Abbi Marie | 24th October 2018
Okay so maybe you’re not thinking of getting back into standard, maybe you’ve never played standard and don’t plan to, in that case, I have one question… Why on earth are you here???
Since the spoilers for Guilds of Ravnica, and then pre-release, and the simple fact that showdown packs have come straight from value town, I really wanted this set to be my return to the standard format, where my love for Magic all began. *Insert dream sequence of naive young Abbi playing her Mono-Black Nightmare deck* But to be honest I was pretty serious about getting back into Standard, I mean, if anything it just creates more opportunities to play Magic, FNMs, tournaments etc. Although I seem to be lying to myself about the actual situation as if I’m still not deciding how to play my Modern deck about a year down the line. ‘Oh, yea I’ll just hop back into standard after rotation simmers down’ hahahahahahahaha-help me.
By the time I decide on a Standard deck or get the money to build one, it’ll be the next rotation. Yes, I’m a mess, my life’s a mess, my deck building skills are a mess. Moving on.
With all this in mind, I thought It would at least be a good start to look at some of the playable and cool decks that have surfaced giving the current rotation and new meta. Even If I still can’t decide, maybe it’ll help you decide, and If you don’t wanna get into Standard, seriously why are you still here????
So here are 5 deck concoctions for your return to Ravnic- I mean standard.
Something Golgari *sigh*
So with Assasins Trophy being the absolute hurricane it’s been, it pretty much put Golgari on the map as a viable option. Golgari Aggro is currently sitting at 23% of the meta, not bad really. (Aggro itself at 75% of the meta) which does make me a little sad as I’m not an Aggro player myself, I’m not aggressive enough as a person. (Except when I see bad drivers of course)
Saying this Aggro is probably the best option for Golgari, but you can do midrange or even Explore varients. I’ll give you guys some choice cards for this kind of deck.
Your Overgrown Tomb’s and Woodland Cemeteries are an obvious one. The most common land base is around 24, maybe 23 if they choose to run Llanowar Elves. You ultimately want a turn 3 Jadelight Ranger, then a turn 4 Chupacabra or Findbroker. Some variants of the decks even play one or both Vraskas.
The deck can be weak to counter-heavy control decks; I’m talking like 12+ counterspells. Of course, don’t forget Teferi and other planeswalkers in general. On the other hand, it is extremely strong vs control decks that rely on actual removal spells to deal with threats. Experimental Frenzy is a very strong card against this deck as there are very few ways to deal with it, as well as March of the Multitudes. Tocatli Honor Guard is also excellent against this deck, especially the creature-heavy lists that might play very few maindeck answers to it.
It’s definitely a strong deck, and top of the meta, but with this means a lot of people will be playing it, and you may see a lot of it at FNMs and Tournaments.
Bet you thought we’d seen the last of these shenanigans? After the dark turn Standard took before Ravnica and rotation a lot of people we’re seeing Red. (Do you see what I did there???) Mono-Red did dominate for a while, and some people were hoping rotation would put an end to this river of red. However, here we are again! Having been dubbed ‘Red Deck Wins’ variants of these decks are sitting at 15% of the Meta, Aggro, of course. Some even swaying toward Goblin or Dragon versions.
Again you’re best at an Aggro approach to this one.
More Goblin heavy
Land tends to sit between 22-24, just plain old Mountains will do, perhaps a Field of Ruin if you’re feeling spicy, but it isn’t that necessary. Mono colour can make your deck less flexible, especially with sideboard cards, but Mono-Red isn’t doing too bad. It can suffer against the Golgari Decks, and general other Aggro decks that can keep up, it’s a fast game and normally they’re designed for a sprint, not a marathon.
There are a few slight variations of this deck, but it sits with 7% of the Meta, and it’s the biggest control deck at the minute in Standard. Control taking up 25% of the current Meta. I do play a form of control (Albeit not Blue, or standard) but if I was to get back into Standard this is probably the route I’d head down, now that we know Angel Tribal is a no-go.
Being a control deck, your lands are around 26/27 heavy. Of course, you’ll want probably 4 of each Glacial Fortress, Clifftop Retreat, Sacred Foundry, Steam Vents and Sulfur Falls. You could even play a couple Crackling Drakes or Niv-Mizzet, but some variants of these decks run 0 creatures. Of course, Planeswalkers as your only win-con can be a risky move, especially with cards like Assassins trophy about.
This deck can struggle against Aggro decks, especially with a lack of Deafening Clarion early on. Control matchups are tough and can be especially hard if they resolve a Search for Azcanta.
Boros Aggro (I mean, kind of Angels.. I guess??)
A nice chunk of 12% of the meta, and while not tribal, it’s got a good amount of Angels in, so I LIKE IT. Aggro again, if you couldn’t guess from the name, and it has Angels in it! Did I say?
This is quite land heavy at 24/25 for your chunky CMC Angels. You want 4 Clifftop Retreat and 4 Sacred Foundry. Shalai, Voice of Plenty, Tocatli Honor Guard and Conclave Tribunal are also some good choices.
This deck can do really well against some Golgari decks as they have significantly weaker 2-drops, and History of Benalia is just a pain in the ass. Mono-red can struggle with the Lifegain that comes with this deck, and slightly bigger creatures. Flying is also a very strong keyword in most formats.
Control can be fair as you have a lot of strong 2/3 drops. If you can get them down early on it puts a lot of pressure on the board.
At a lower but still present 4% of the Meta this deck is still a fun and viable option for Standard play.
This deck can really hold it’s own against Golgari, just like any token deck. It can also have fast starts to overrun Control decks and fast regrowth after a wrath effect. Against Aggro (without Chainwhirler) there is a lot of Lifelink and fast swarm to win any long game, but Chainwhirler can be a tough match.
Do you have any standard decks you’re enjoying? Or brews you think are whacky and wonderful? Let us know!