I have another confession to make (my friends). Sorry, Foo Fighters reference.
I love Magic: the Gathering’s block constructed format. It’s been quite a while since I earnestly played Magic. Like 6 years or so? Let’s put it this way: I was last seen jamming as many 2-man, 8-mans, and any tournaments I could find on MTGO to grind tickets playing block constructed on MTGO grinding tickets (as well as a Unburial Rites + Thragtusk deck in standard that could outlast any control deck in the format).
Flash forward to now: I have been re-introduced to Magic through Magic Arena. I have been playing some the last week or so, and just noticed a block constructed format event.
The competitive side of me had already been urging me to drop some money on Arena to expedite the collection building process. And this is was the final push I needed. So, 90 packs later I have most cards I need to build any non-mythic based deck. And plenty of wildcards to fill in the rest.
So, what deck?
Well, off to Google I went and found this Reddit post: My experience trying to get through the Zendikar Constructed event. And hidden among the comments was this deck.
|4x Fireblade Charger|
|4x Archpriest of Iona|
|4x Kargan Intimidator|
|4x Luminarch Aspirant|
|4x Maul of Skyclaves|
|2x Shatterskull Charger|
|2x Kargan Warleader|
|4x Kor Blademaster|
|4x Skyclave Apparition|
|2x Leonin Angel|
|2x Akiri, Fearless Voyager|
|Some number of lands, including:Kabiri TakedownShatterskull SmashingMakindi StampedeNeedleverge Pathway|
Here’s what I ended up with (4x Needleverge Pathway hiding at the bottom):
Zendikar Constructed Event Results
So far, I have played 5 events (updated – 9 events now):
|1st event||4-0 (including 1 rogue win)|
|2nd event||4-0 (including 1 rogue win)|
|3rd event||2-2 (no rogues)|
|4th event||4-1 (including 1 rogue win)|
|5th event||4-0 (including 1 rogue win)|
|6th event||4-0 (no rogues)|
|7th event||4-0 (no rogues)|
|8th event||4-0 (including 1 rogue win)|
|9th event||4-0 (no rogues)|
Not bad results for someone who has only been playing again for 1 week. And whose first game with the deck was in the first event.
33-3 (90.9% winning percentage) record, with a net 600 gold and 9 rares / 18 uncommons to my name. I don’t actually expect the winning percentage to stay that high, but it’s possible. 2 of the 3 losses were due to bad mana configuration. One game I ended up stuck on 2 mana after taking a chance by using Kabira Takedown instead of playing for mana. And the second game was due to having too much red mana (4 red sources, 1 white source), which lead to the current land distribution (note: if playing a red/white deck, just splurge on the wildcards to get the “dual lands”).
Possible Changes to Deck
I like having the Leonin Angels on the top end of the deck. They provide evasion to help close out games. But, I think it could make sense to instead leverage a full playset of Kargan Warleader. Or other 3 mana (or lower) cards. This would allow you to possibly cut one land from the deck, or be more comfortable using Kabira Takedown early to clear the path for your creatures.
Playing the Deck
The deck is overall fairly straightforward. Play dudes and swing.
But it is all about maximizing damage over the course of 5 turns. Games can go longer, but those 5 turns are critical. And with a deck like this, you should always be playing to your outs if your initial push stalls out.
What are Outs?
Outs are cards that can help you “get there” if you topdeck them.
Maul of Skyclaves: can provide flying and at least two extra damage (maybe more…)
Kor Blademaster: in conjunction with Maul, this can an extra 1-5 damage usually if Maul is already equipped (almost lost a game because I did not pay attention to the extra 5 damage coming at me from Blademaster + Maul)
Skyclave Apparition: Clear the way of one creature with 4 or fewer mana cost
Kargan Intimidator: Clear the way of one creature for your warriors
Kabiri Takedown: Clear the way of one creature with toughness less than the number of creatures you have in play