Patch 1.01.00, Ally Warfield Interview, Win Every Card Event, Jeskai Superfriends, Esper Dance, Bant Golos, Gruul Smash, Abzan Wolves

The News

Patch 1.01.00

An update went live Thursday to address a few bugs. There isn’t anything worth talking about, but if you would like to read the patch notes, you can find them here.

Glimmers of Genius: Ally Warfield

Team Rankstar’s very own Tim Chambers had a chance to chat with the awesome Ally Warfield about her recent top 4 GP finish, her upcoming Mythic Championship appearance, and future career as a school counselor. You can check it out here!

Win Every Card Challenge

This weekend is the much talked-about Win Every Card in Standard Event. Instead of trying to sum it up myself, I’ll just copy the info directly from the article:

The Decks

Since we’re going into the arguably the biggest event in Arena yet, let’s look at what are, in my opinion, the decks to beat in Bo1.

Fires & Friends

similar to lists from @ThebeauMTG @moctzal @LokalnyFilipo

4 Fae of Wishes (ELD) 44
4 Bonecrusher Giant (ELD) 115
4 Narset, Parter of Veils (WAR) 61
4 Teferi, Time Raveler (WAR) 221
2 Sarkhan the Masterless (WAR) 143
3 Prison Realm (WAR) 26
4 Deafening Clarion (GRN) 165
4 Fires of Invention (ELD) 125
2 Drawn from Dreams (M20) 56
2 Time Wipe (WAR) 223
2 Mountain (ELD) 265
2 Island (ELD) 255
1 Plains (ELD) 250
2 Fabled Passage (ELD) 244
4 Interplanar Beacon (WAR) 247
4 Hallowed Fountain (RNA) 251
4 Steam Vents (GRN) 257
3 Sacred Foundry (GRN) 254
3 Temple of Epiphany (M20) 253
1 Temple of Triumph (M20) 257
1 Castle Vantress (ELD) 2422 Dovin's Veto (WAR) 193

2 Mystical Dispute (ELD) 58
1 The Elderspell (WAR) 89
1 Disenchant (M20) 14
1 Ashiok, Dream Render (WAR) 228
1 Unmoored Ego (GRN) 212
1 Time Wipe (WAR) 223
1 Nicol Bolas, Dragon-God (WAR) 207
1 Casualties of War (WAR) 187
1 Chandra, Awakened Inferno (M20) 127
1 Garruk, Cursed Huntsman (ELD) 191
1 Ethereal Absolution (RNA) 170
1 Planewide Celebration (WAR) 172

Fires of Invention is an interesting card, and I see it spawning more than one archetype in it’s time in Standard. Free spells are always a good way to break symmetry, and casting two free spells on each of your turns can be backbreaking.

Fae of Wishes also opens up a lot of possibilities in Best of 1 games, allowing you to fill up your typically unused sideboard with tutorable answers.

Put these two cards together and you have the makings of a potent deck regardless of your wincon. In this case, a planeswalker package helmed by Sarkhan the Masterless is just where we want to be.

The strategy is fairly simple. Deal with the opponents threats. Set up your board. Turn your planeswalkers into dragons, and turn them sideways. Going into this weekend I think Jeskai Superfriends with Fae of Wishes and Fires of Invention is the top deck to beat.

Esper Dance

from @AFKGOLDBOTELITE

4 Fae of Wishes (ELD) 44
2 Murderous Rider (ELD) 97
2 Disfigure (M20) 95
1 Dovin's Veto (WAR) 193
1 Cry of the Carnarium (RNA) 70
2 Dance of the Manse (ELD) 186
4 Kaya's Wrath (RNA) 187
4 Teferi, Time Raveler (WAR) 221
4 Oath of Kaya (WAR) 209
3 Doom Foretold (ELD) 187
4 Golden Egg (ELD) 220
4 Guild Globe (WAR) 239
3 Swamp (ANA) 58
2 Plains (ANA) 56
2 Island (ANA) 57
4 Fabled Passage (ELD) 244
1 Castle Vantress (ELD) 242
4 Watery Grave (GRN) 259
3 Hallowed Fountain (RNA) 251
3 Godless Shrine (RNA) 248
3 Temple of Silence (M20) 2561 Glass Casket (ELD) 15

1 The Elderspell (WAR) 89
1 Dovin's Veto (WAR) 193
1 Despark (WAR) 190
1 Cry of the Carnarium (RNA) 70
1 Ashiok, Dream Render (WAR) 228
1 Unmoored Ego (GRN) 212
1 Time Wipe (WAR) 223
1 Enter the God-Eternals (WAR) 196
1 Planar Cleansing (M20) 33
1 Command the Dreadhorde (WAR) 82
1 Ethereal Absolution (RNA) 170
1 Captive Audience (RNA) 160
1 Dance of the Manse (ELD) 186
1 Mass Manipulation (RNA) 42

Esper Stax, or in this case Esper Dance of the Manse is being touted by some pros as the best deck in Standard at the moment. But most of them are playing it in Best of 3, as pros are wont to do. But just like in the Jeskai Walkers list above, Fae of Wishes is letting us take a sideboard of utility into the Best of 1 realm.

The key player here are really Doom Foretold and Oath of Kaya. Dance of the Manse just lets you play them out multiple times allowing their small tempo swings to snowball into an unmanageable advantage. The Eggs and Guild Globe allow you to run a less-than-perfect mana base without sacrificing the ability to play Kaya’s Wrath on turn four consistently.

There are other versions of this deck floating around. With a bit of experimentation you can find the right fit. Maybe consider adding a Wishclaw Talisman. Teferi lets you bounce it back to your hand after you tutor, just to use it again next turn, and it’s a good target for Dance when it’s in your graveyard.

Bant Golos Field

from Alexander Hayne

4 Arboreal Grazer (WAR) 149
4 Once Upon a Time (ELD) 169
4 Growth Spiral (RNA) 178
4 Teferi, Time Raveler (WAR) 221
4 Circuitous Route (GRN) 125
1 Time Wipe (WAR) 223
4 Golos, Tireless Pilgrim (M20) 226
3 Realm-Cloaked Giant (ELD) 26
4 Hydroid Krasis (RNA) 183
2 Forest (ELD) 268
2 Island (ELD) 255
1 Plains (ELD) 250
2 Fabled Passage (ELD) 244
4 Field of the Dead (M20) 247
1 Castle Vantress (ELD) 242
2 Hallowed Fountain (RNA) 251
2 Breeding Pool (RNA) 246
2 Temple Garden (GRN) 258
1 Temple of Malady (M20) 254
1 Temple of Mystery (M20) 255
1 Orzhov Guildgate (RNA) 252
1 Izzet Guildgate (GRN) 251
1 Golgari Guildgate (GRN) 248
1 Selesnya Guildgate (GRN) 255
1 Simic Guildgate (RNA) 257
1 Blossoming Sands (M20) 243
1 Tranquil Cove (M20) 259
1 Plaza of Harmony (RNA) 254

Expect to see Golos, Tireless Pilgrim and Field of the Dead together in different shells for the next twelve months. This Bant-based list is likely the biggest game in Standard right now. I like this version especially because it can put down some early speed bumps with Arboreal Grazer and Teferi, Time Raveller. Then it transitions well into the late game with the board wipes, Golos, and huge Hydroid Krasis.

The real big game of this deck is making disgusting amounts of Zombie tokens and swinging for lethal with thirty or more power on the board. It doesn’t matter how long it takes to get to that point, as long as you’re able to string together productive turns you’ll eventually have a big one.

Gruul Smash

from: multiple sources

4 Pelt Collector (GRN) 141
4 Growth-Chamber Guardian (RNA) 128
4 Zhur-Taa Goblin (RNA) 215
4 Gruul Spellbreaker (RNA) 179
3 Bonecrusher Giant (ELD) 115
2 Thrashing Brontodon (M20) 197
2 Questing Beast (ELD) 171
2 Skarrgan Hellkite (RNA) 114
4 Shock (M20) 160
2 Once Upon a Time (ELD) 169
3 Domri's Ambush (WAR) 192
1 The Great Henge (ELD) 161
3 Domri, Anarch of Bolas (WAR) 191
10 Forest (ELD) 269
7 Mountain (ELD) 265
4 Stomping Ground (RNA) 259
1 Castle Embereth (ELD) 239

For those looking for a more straight-forward game plan for the event, I have to suggest a Gruul deck. There are several builds of Gruul going around right now. Some use Robber of the Rich. Others have Gilded Goose to ramp a bit. They use different numbers of each of the cards, and at this point the optimal lists hasn’t been found. I pulled the above from the meta snapshot on mtgatool.com, and I’ve been having a lot of fun with it. So, if you want to just smash face and let RNGsus take the wheel, play Gruul.

Big Abzan Wolves (CASUAL)

from Dominik

4 Gilded Goose (ELD) 160
4 Ferocious Pup (M20) 171
4 Savvy Hunter (ELD) 200
4 Nightpack Ambusher (M20) 185
3 Wicked Wolf (ELD) 181
3 Bake into a Pie (ELD) 76
2 Prison Realm (WAR) 26
3 Sorin, Vengeful Bloodlord (WAR) 217
4 Tolsimir, Friend to Wolves (WAR) 224
3 Garruk, Cursed Huntsman (ELD) 191
2 The Great Henge (ELD) 161
3 Swamp (ELD) 259
3 Forest (ELD) 269
2 Plains (ELD) 250
4 Overgrown Tomb (GRN) 253
4 Godless Shrine (RNA) 248
4 Temple Garden (GRN) 258
2 Temple of Malady (M20) 254
2 Temple of Silence (M20) 256

While I’m constantly thinking about optimal lists and win percentages, playing off-meta decks is where I want to play. I met Dominik at the Throne of Eldraine prerelease at The Zone, in Pekin, IL. We played each other in round 3. After our games I asked to check out his deck, and I was really impressed with the synergies he had managed to piece together. We got to talking about tournament Magic, and how I avoided it. He told me about taking a Dragon Tribal deck to one of the NRG $5k tournaments, and didn’t do terribly. I was intrigued.

He went on to tell me about his 10 win run in last week’s Play Anything event with his Wolf Tribal deck. We found each other on social media, and he sent the list over. I’ve been playing the heck out of this deck ever since.

What you see above is his list, unedited. I really like it, and think that with some minor tweaks, it could be fairly competitive. But I wanted to drop it here and thank Dominik for sending me the list. If his brewing skills are everything I think they are, this won’t be the last deck of his you’ll see here.

The Wrap Up

We’re in a news-lite and deck-heavy time in Arena, and really all of Magic the Gathering. With less impactful sets leaving and the introduction of what seems to be a wildly powerful set, it’s only reasonable to expect a lot of deck lists over the next few weeks without much news otherwise.

At this point we’re just waiting to hear when Brawl is going to show up as a playable format. It was stated to be releasing this month! Even though we got word recently that there won’t be a queue for it all of the time, we will still be able to use direct challenges to play Brawl with our friends.

Previous Weeks

2019-09-27 (Client Release, ELD Release, Bant Hero, Torbran Cavalcade)
2019-09-20 (Event Update, ELD Previews, Simic Flash, Mardu Knights)
2019-09-13 (Historic Changes, Standard 2020, Mastery Pass Countdown)

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