Since the day I held my first Magic cards in my tiny, pre-pubescent hands, I had a weakness for the color green and big, bad creatures. Wait, let me correct the latter one: I had a love for seemingly tiny critters who would turn into unstoppable powerhouses at my command. Back then, I had assembled a Spike deck, revolving around the +1/+1 counters being moved from one Spike to another, creating some massive slug-like creatures. It was awesome when I stomped my brother with 8/8 monstrosities. Rancor helped making that possible and for that, it will forever have a special place in my heart.
Pauper allows me to give Rancor another go with the oh so popular Stompy deck. Playing Stompy revolves around playing tiny creatures and injecting them with stuff like the aforementioned Rancor or Shield of the Oversoul, turning them into formidable foes. However, it doesn’t stop there. Instants like Groundswell and Gather Courage give your servants that final boost, overrunning your enemy’s creatures with all the force green commons can muster.
When I put it like that, it sounds like playing Stompy doesn’t require much finesse. Nothing could be further from the truth. In a format where decks like Delver have ways to ignore your creatures completely, simply rushing for another way of winning, leading your mob to victory is tricky. The cards in your deck allow you only limited immunity against creature removal. Sure, you can pump up your creatures to survive removal like Lightning Bolt, but hexproofing them against anything else is hard. That’s why tactical use of Vines of Vastwood and your ever so handy Silhana Ledgewalker is so important. Buff up that Ledgewalker, annul your opponent’s removal and sweep in for some killing blows.
I’m still rounding out the deck, but so far, I’m satisfied with it. Granted, my lack of skill and control of this deck has resulted in quite some losses, but every game teaches me something new. Soon, I’ll stomp them. I’ll stomp them all.
Just a few hours ago, Wizards of the Coast spoiled us with a look at some cards from their next core set Magic 2014. It’s normal for Wizards to give us a few spoilers way before the release of the set, but the cards we’ve seen now are proof of the return of one of Magic’s most iconic creature types: slivers. These nasty-looking beasts have first been sighted in the Tempest set, and had their last public appearance in Future Sight. Now, July will be the month they return to Standard play,
This has me hyped for two reasons. First of all, I hate sliver decks. I recall the days one of my friends built one, and though it was not complete, it annoyed the hell out of me that if he survived long enough, all his creatures had trample, flying, first strike and all other tools needed to ruin my day. However, I love slivers since I just love tribal mechanics. Focusing on a certain creature type gives me focus, and makes it easy for me to pick cards for a deck. Now, I’m actually considering building a sliver deck as soon as “M14” comes around, not just as a way to recover from childhood traumas.
How do you feel about the return of these hive-minds? What else do you hope to find in Magic 2014?
As the release of Dragon’s Maze is drawing near, and I couldn’t get a spot at my local gamestore’s Prerelease (can you see the sadface?), I’ve been having some fun during the weekend tweaking my Boros deck. You can find the tentative decklist right here, and I would love all you Magic lovers to take a look at it and give your feedback. Before you do that, though, here are a few things my deck is about:
Like every Boros deck, I want to make good use of the Battalion keyword. I love the mechanic, and I love how it motivates me to attack with as many creatures as possible. Due to that, the majority of my creatures should have it.
I’m a sucker for weenie decks, and as you can see in this deck’s mana curve, it peaks out at two mana, and holds only one 4-mana critter. While I’m willing to add bigger creatures, I wouldn’t want them to have a converted mana cost of more than four.
The majority of the deck is formed by creatures, but I’m covering them with a selection of other spells. Arrows of Justice offer some form of removal, and so does Mugging. The flexibility of Boros Charm is something I enjoy, so I would love to keep it.
Knowing that, I can already see some points of improvement. Act of Treason could offer me some early-game Battalion and take care of potential blockers. More Madcap Skills could turn some already annoying creatures into even more annoying creatures, and if I had the luck or money, I would add two more Reckoners and three Frontline Medics.
So, Magic geeks of the blogosphere, hit me hard with your critique and help me improve this deck!