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BAN & Change of Companion Rule

BAN & Change of Companion Rule

 

How things have changed

 

Here we are again to talk about the last Bans that affected Standard and the changes of the companion rules and how that created a shift in the Standard metagame.

BAN

 

The Ban hitting on Agent of Treachery and Fires of Invention killed for sure the deck the nearly alone and uncontested was dominating the metagame, Jeskai Lukka. It also took out Winota decks and the good old Jeskai Fires from the field. Obviously also all the other deck that were “abusing” the Agent of Treachery and Yorion, Sky Nomad interaction died with these changes.

Companion

 

The first impression that most of the people had, including me, was that with the change of the Companion rule they were going to be close to unplayable, aside from Yorion, Sky Nomad that looked good even with the new rule for the bonus that it gives.

The poor Lurrus of the Dream-Den decks suffered more this change and are nearly disappeared.

As said before few decks are still playing Yorion, Sky Nomad as a Companion, some lists of Bant, UW Control and Temur Elementals are still around but problably just Tier 1.5 at best.

Jegantha, the Wellspring seeing some play as Companion in some builds of  Jund, Mardu Knights and Rakdos (list that I played for a while below) just because it is a “free” card just costing you a card from the sideboard.

Companion
1 Jegantha, the Wellspring

Deck
4 Blood Crypt
2 Castle Locthwain
4 Cauldron Familiar
4 Claim the Firstborn
4 Dreadhorde Butcher
4 Fabled Passage
4 Gutterbones
4 Mayhem Devil
4 Midnight Reaper
6 Mountain
4 Priest of Forgotten Gods
1 Robber of the Rich
7 Swamp
4 Witch’s Oven
4 Woe Strider

Sideboard
4 Agonizing Remorse
2 Embereth Shieldbreaker
1 Fire Prophecy
2 Heartless Act
1 Jegantha, the Wellspring
4 Rotting Regisaur
1 Theater of Horrors

New Metagame

 

With this changes as previewed above the metagame changed, some deck disappeared and some come back to shine, for as far as I saw in these days the best decks at the moment are, not in any particular order:

Temur Reclamation

Deck
3 Uro, Titan of Nature’s Wrath
2 Aether Gust
4 Expansion // Explosion
4 Growth Spiral
2 Mystical Dispute
1 Neutralize
3 Opt
3 Scorching Dragonfire
2 Thassa’s Intervention
4 Shark Typhoon
4 Wilderness Reclamation
2 Blast Zone
4 Breeding Pool
2 Castle Vantress
4 Fabled Passage
2 Forest
2 Island
4 Ketria Triome
1 Mountain
3 Steam Vents
3 Stomping Ground
1 Temple of Mystery

Sideboard
2 Mystical Dispute
2 Bonecrusher Giant
1 Brazen Borrower
2 Chemister’s Insight
1 Commence the Endgame
3 Negate
2 Nightpack Ambusher
2 Wilt

I mean this is nothing new actually, not even the build is much different from before but with Jeskai Lukka gone and so nobody stealing you the lands in the first turns, this might be the weapon of choice if you fell comfortable in playing this Control/Combo kinda deck. Personally I love this deck and it gave me satisfaction in the past so I certainty recommend it.

Another deck that I love and seems to be really solid in this metagame it is Jund Sacrifice, with the exception of Temur Rec as a bad MU the rest of the field it is still a good place for Jund:

Deck
4 Cauldron Familiar
4 Gilded Goose
1 Korvold, Fae-Cursed King
4 Mayhem Devil
4 Priest of Forgotten Gods
4 Woe Strider
4 Claim the Firstborn
3 Bolas’s Citadel
4 Witch’s Oven
4 Trail of Crumbs
4 Blood Crypt
4 Fabled Passage
3 Forest
1 Mountain
4 Overgrown Tomb
4 Stomping Ground
4 Swamp

Sideboard
2 Korvold, Fae-Cursed King
3 Cindervines
4 Duress
2 Embereth Shieldbreaker
2 Lava Coil
2 The Akroan War

If you like Cats, triggers and killing the opponent slowly but inexorably with those Mayhem Devil pings, or just a nice Bolas’s Citadel activation, but this deck can also go really go over the top with the interactions that as with Trail of Crumbs that often bring you back when you’re behind and became a card advantage machine that it’s hard to stop. So I can certainly say that if you  like this kind of deck this might easily be the best choice for this Standard.

Humble brag, this deck took me on the second day of the season to the MTG ARENA Mythic Rank #12 so it hold a special place in my heart.

 

Last deck that I would like to present to you, but not for importance, it’s Bant Ramp, back in the meta feat Nissa, Who Shakes the World that make her come back to the Standard once again, ready to shake it once again.

 

Deck
2 Narset, Parter of Veils
4 Nissa, Who Shakes the World
2 Tamiyo, Collector of Tales
4 Teferi, Time Raveler
1 Dream Trawler
2 Hydroid Krasis
4 Uro, Titan of Nature’s Wrath
3 Shatter the Sky
3 Aether Gust
4 Growth Spiral
2 Elspeth Conquers Death
1 Blast Zone
4 Breeding Pool
4 Fabled Passage
2 Forest
4 Hallowed Fountain
2 Island
1 Ketria Triome
2 Plains
4 Temple Garden
2 Temple of Enlightenment
2 Temple of Plenty
1 Zagoth Triome

Sideboard
1 Aether Gust
1 Elspeth Conquers Death
2 Brazen Borrower
2 Dovin’s Veto
4 Glass Casket
2 Knight of Autumn
3 Mystical Dispute

 

Here you find another deck that we already saw dominating the Standard, now it is back on track and you can find either list of 60 cards or some 80 cards list that use Yorion, Sky Nomad as companion. If you like Midrange/Controlish decks, doing card advantage, big mana and dealing with all opponent threats this might be your weapon of choice. Solid and with a solution for everything Bant Ramp is definitely a deck that will be around again for a while now.

 

Conclusions

 

Those decks are currently the tier 1s of the metagame that is just settling down now, so things might change a bit from now on and they will probably change when M21 comes out, but till then this is most likely the “power house” that I saw and I feel recommending. As I said under every archetype try to make the choice with in mind what you like and feel comfortable playing because that makes a great difference on how you’re going to play.

 

Bonus

 

A deck that seem to be always valuable when the metagame is not settled completely it’s MonoRed a straight forward aggro that in different builds always effective in killing the opponents quite fast and punishing most of the people that is trying to find a place in Standard.

This is a build that I found interesting featuring Cavalcade of Calamity

Deck
4 Chandra, Acolyte of Flame
2 Tibalt, Rakish Instigator
4 Fervent Champion
4 Grim Initiate
4 Scorch Spitter
4 Tin Street Dodger
4 Torbran, Thane of Red Fell
4 Forbidden Friendship
4 Heartfire
4 Cavalcade of Calamity
4 Castle Embereth
18 Mountain

Sideboard
1 Tibalt, Rakish Instigator
4 Blazing Volley
4 Embereth Shieldbreaker
2 Redcap Melee
4 Scorching Dragonfire

This deck try to kill the opponent very quickly with fast and small creatures, triggering those Cavalcade of Calamity, possibly with a Torbran, Thane of Red Fell to get that win even on turn 4 with a good start. This is a possibility but you might also want to stick to a more classic version with Embercleave. Now MonoRed is not really my kind of deck, but if you really want to play quick games of Magic this is the deck for you probably.

 

Post Scriptum

 

The ones that I exposed here are the decks that are currently most played and the ones I consider the strongest, but as I said previously sleeve up (digitally or irl) whatever you like and feel comfortable playing with, that is really something that make the difference, doing your own choice doesn’t leave space for the regret of playing something because someone told you and then not feeling comfy with it, because that usually bring you to play badly and put you in a bad mindset. In the end remember that its still a card game and you should have fun playing it, not stressing out!

 

That’s it for today, remember,

Have fun, stay safe and play Magic!

Saverio Quinto aka Space Cowboy

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