Category Archives: Theory

Magic 2015: Practice Sealed #2

As part of my GP Sydney preparation, I have bought a booster box of Magic 2015 that will be used to provide practice sealed pools, in order to practice our deckbuilding skills and enhance our knowledge of the format. This is the first of six pools from that booster box.

For a recap of the overall “sort process” I use for Sealed pools, see the first paragraph of Sealed Pool #1. Let’s get straight to it:

White
Resolute Archangel
Spectra Ward
Boonweaver Giant

Razorfoot Griffin
Midnight Guard
Sungrace Pegasus x3
Kinsbaile Skirmisher

Wall of Essence
Sanctified Charge x2
Selfless Cathar
Tireless Missionaries
Congregate
First Response

White has some immediate bombs available in the Archangel and Spectra Ward. Boonweaver Giant is not normally in the “bomb” category, but Spectra Ward pushes him up there, as a 6/6 protection from all colours is nigh unkillable. Unfortunately, White doesn’t seem to have a lot of depth outside of these cards, with a few middling 2-drop creatures and some utility spells being the bulk of the available cards. In this pool, White is at best a support colour to a deeper colour, and it could be correct to just ignore the White entirely.

Blue
Jorubi Murk Lurker x2
Illusory Angel

Welkin Tern
Aeronaut Tinkerer
Peel from Reality x3
Quickling

Void Snare
Chronostutter x3
Fugitive Wizard
Hydrosurge

Blue’s best offerings are the pair of Murk Lurkers, which forces us to pair with Black if we play the colour. While the rest of the creatures are perfectly acceptable in their own right, the awkward combination of spells is not particularly helpful, particularly the triplicates. Blue is likely not going to be played in this pool.

Black
Soul of Innistrad
Flesh to Dust

Accursed Spirit x2
Typhoid Rats x2
Crippling Blight
Blood Host

Necrobite x2
Witch’s Familiar
Unmake the Graves
Mind Rot x2
Eternal Thirst
Wall of Limbs

Headlined by a Soul and a premium removal spell, Black makes a strong case to be one of the colours to play in this pool. The rest of the cards are quite playable, with the Spirits being an evasive source of damage while the Rats gum up the ground. While the overall number of decent playables is slightly short, the is enough here that Black is worthy of consideration.

Red
Cone of Flame
Paragon of Fierce Defiance x2

Inferno Fist
Borderland Marauder
Krenko’s Enforcer
Generator Servant x2
Rummaging Goblin

Crowd’s Favor x2
Foundry Street Denizen
Miner’s Bane
Wall of Fire
Clear a Path

Cone of Flame is an extremely potent card in Limited, often removing several creatures from the board at once, or even just killing your opponent. A pair of Paragons is an excellent selling point for Red as well, and we have a number of small creatures available for them to pump up. A pair of Generator servants can be used to accelerate to some bombs in other colours, like the Soul or the Boonweaver Giant. Red is a strong contender for a playable colour.

Green
Kalonian Twingrove
Genesis Hydra
Paragon of Eternal Wilds x2
Elvish Mystic

Netcaster Spider
Charging Rhino
Shaman of Spring x2
Living Totem

Satyr Wayfinder
Carnivorous Moss-Beast
Plummet x2
Back to Nature

Green also features bombs in Kalonian Twingrove and Genesis Hydra. Another pair of Paragons also shows up in Green, and although there are less creatures available in this colour to pump, the trample-granting ability will be put to good use here. There are a number of solid creatures to fill out a curve, as well. It’s worth noting here that Green has absolutely no removal, and will be reliant on other colours to provide that protection.

Artifacts
(No bombs)

Hot Soup
Tyrant’s Machine
Will-Forged Golem x2

Staff of the Wild Magus
Staff of the Sun Magus

Lands
Yavimaya Coast

Hot Soup, and Tyrant’s Machine to a lesser extent, are reasonable includes if we need a 22nd-23rd card. The other cards areunfortunately unplayable, including the Yavimaya Coast as the Blue pool was too weak.

This is an extremely difficult pool to build from, as while there are a number of good cards available, they are fairly evenly spread across all the colours (The exact split is 16/15/16/15/15 from White to Green, a surprisingly even distribution). This is true to the extent that I still haven’t figured out the “right” build for this pool. While Blue was eliminated in our initial review of the cards, that still leaves six different possible colour pairings. While unconventional, as you certainly won’t have time to do this at a real event, I’m going to cover all the available options and evaluate them individually.

Red had the most cohesive plan when we looked at it, and Black had a reasonable game plan as well.  This pairing seems like a good place to start:

Red/Black
Typhoid Rats x2
Borderland Marauder
Generator Servant x2
Krenko’s Enforcer
Rummaging Goblin
Witch’s Familiar
Accursed Spirit x2
Paragon of Fierce Defiance x2
Blood Host
Soul of Innistrad
Miner’s Bane

Hot Soup
Crippling Blight
Crowd’s Favor x2
Inferno Fist
Necrobite
Flesh to Dust
Cone of Flame

Relevant Sideboard
Unmake the Graves
Mind Rot x2
Eternal Thirst
Wall of Limbs
Necrobite
Foundry Street Denizen
Tyrant’s Machine

Wall of Fire
Clear a Path

This deck looks very reasonable on the surface. You have an early game plan of beat down with aggressive dudes, which the Pargaons will pump. In the late game, a Soul of Innistrad can provide a large advantage. Miner’s Bane is there as an awkward second “finisher” due to the lack of options in these colours. There is a decent amount of removal available as well.

The second Crowd’s Favor was the 23rd card added, and it’s not entirely clear whether that’s correct, or if it should be the Tyrant’s Machine instead. Favor and Necrobite are definitely the two cards I would flag to take out when sideboarding, as they get worse once your opponent knows about them, and Necrobite in particular is awfully clunky.

Unfortunately, this deck does appear to have a weakness to fliers, having exactly zero flying creatures anywhere in the list. The decks solution to this to attempt to outrace any flying beats with the dual Paragon plan, with removal available in emergencies, but it’s still worth noting. A potential solution for this is to pair Red with White instead, as White has a few options available to control the skies:

Red/White
Selfless Cathar
Borderland Marauder
Generator Servant x2
Sungrace Pegasus x3
Kinsbaile Skirmisher
Krenko’s Enforcer
Rummaging Goblin
Midnight Guard
Razorfoot Griffin
Paragon of Fierce Defiance x2
Resolute Archangel
Boonweaver Giant

Hot Soup
Crowd’s Favor x2
Inferno Fist
Cone of Flame
Spectra Ward
Sanctified Charge

Relevant Sideboard
Sanctified Charge
Tireless Missionaries
Foundry Street Denizen
Miner’s Bane

Wall of Essence
Wall of Fire
Congregate
First Response
Clear a Path

This list has a very similar plan A of playing the early beatdown game. While the Pegasi don’t look too impressive, they can help push through damage while helping you stay ahead in a race with lifelink. Inferno Fist on a Pegasus is quite good also. With a primary plan of swarming with a bunch of creatures, Sanctified Charge promises to be quite powerful here, and it’s not clear that we don’t want the second copy. Charging with two Pegasi out is another excellent way to pad your life total.

This version is able to drop the Miner’s Bane, as Whites finisher options are just so much better. While seven mana looks a bit awkward in this weenie-oriented deck, Generator Servant helps provide that little push required to get them out in time. Selfless Cathar barely makes the cut as another way to make combat awkward for the opponent.

Red/Green
I’m going to cheat here and not provide the decklist, as I don’t think a Red/Green combination is particularly viable. The curve is a little clunky, and light on early plays. There is also a significant glut at the 4-drop slot, between 2 Red Paragons, 2 Green Paragons, and 2 Shaman of Spring. The Green bombs don’t seem better then the White options, and, outside of playing maindeck Plummets, Green’s natural weakness to flying compounds the flying issue rather then aids it.

With all the red options exhausted, the other option is to use Black as the main colour:

Black/White
Typhoid Rats x2
Wall of Essence
Sungrace Pegasus x3
Kinsbaile Skirmisher
Witch’s Familiar
Wall of Limbs
Midnight Guard
Accursed Spirit x2
Razorfoot Griffin
Blood Host
Soul of Innistrad
Resolute Archangel
Boonweaver Giant

Crippling Blight
Hot Soup
Tyrant’s Machine
Necrobite
Flesh to Dust
Spectra Ward

Relevant Sideboard
Unmake the Graves
Necrobite
Sanctified Charge x2
Selfless Cathar
Tireless Missionaries
Mind Rot x2
Eternal Thirst
Congregate
First Response

Amusingly enough, this deck looks like it could do a decent job of pulling off the Wall of Limbs kill, with all the incidental sources of lifegain in the deck (3 Pegasus, Blood Host, Wall of Essence, and even the Archangel, with more available in the board). Without the aggression of Red to fuel us, we’re more all-in on our bombs, with some small evasive hits getting in while the ground is clogged up with Walls and Rats.

It’s not clear this deck doesn’t want a Sanctified Charge, as it could be a nice way to get some surprise kills (Who doesn’t like killing creatures with Wall of Essence?). The Hot Soup also looks more out of place in this deck, as we’ve moved away from the aggressive swarming strategy into a more stalling long game play that the Tyrant’s Machine favors.

Ultimately, however, I’m not convinced this deck is better then either the Red/Black or Red/White variations. That said, I will sleeve it up and run it through some practice matches to confirm.

Black/Green
Black/Green is bad for most of the same reasons Red/Green was, and actually looks even worse. Your two-drop slot basically doesn’t exist, which in my experiences is unacceptable in this format, and there’s still a huge glut of 4-drops and expensive creatures. I don’t like it at all.

Green/White
For completeness, here’s the summary of Green/White as well. This option looks surprisingly better then the other pairings for Green, as White does a good job of filling the two-drop slot by itself. The bomb density is at it’s highest in this deck, with the colours each contributing two rares. However, the overall removal density is weakened as a result due to removing Black and Red, and this deck is again more all-in on it’s bombs as a result. It likely isn’t terrible, but I again don’t think it’s better then Red/Black or Red/White.

Conclusions
Of the decks examined in this article, I think the “best” option is either Red/Black or Red/White, with the edge slightly given to White, as it has both more bombs available, and can be more explosive thanks to Sanctified Charge. The limited interactions with fliers is another strike against the Red/Black build.

An honorable mention is given to the Black/White deck, as it’s worth experimenting to see if a deck with that kind of game plan can succeed in the format.

I hope everyone enjoyed looking at this Sealed pool. This is the kind I would consider to be the most educational, as there’s no clear “best deck”, and we have to weigh the pros and cons of a variety of configurations.

Stay tuned for more M15 Limited breakdowns.

Until then,

Random.

Brewing with Blossoms

Recently I was bitten by the Eidolon of Blossoms bug, and found myself idly thinking about how to build around it in Standard. I then was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to play with it in Draft. Lets just say that didn’t help this condition, even with the amount of support my deck had for it. Today, I’d like to go through the process of building a deck around Eidolon of Blossoms and try to reach its full potential.

4 Eidolon of Blossoms
4 Courser of Kruphix

This seems like the default core of any Eidolon deck. Beyond the obvious synergy of Courser triggering Eidolon, Courser also filters lands off the top of the deck, helping ensure the Eidolon continually draws into impactful cards.

Sticking with just Green for now, let’s examine what the deck wants. Some early game ramp is probably desired (Elvish Mystic, Sylvan Caryatid), along with some more Enchantments to trigger Eidolon (Boon Satyr, Nylea). Finally, the deck would like some decent finishers so you actually have a way to win the game after drawing a million cards (Polukranos, Primeval Bounty). With all this, the first iteration of the deck looks like this:

4 Elvish Mystic
4 Sylvan Caryatid
4 Voyaging Satyr
4 Scavenging Ooze
4 Boon Satyr
4 Courser of Kruphix
4 Eidolon of Blossoms
4 Polukranos, World Eater
1 Nylea, God of the Hunt
1 Primeval Bounty
3 Setessan Tactics
23 Forest

At this point, it seems obvious that the deck is sharing some similarities with the Mono-Green Devotion variants that exist out there. The deck already contains Voyaging Satyr, Nylea and Polukranos. Perhaps we should encourage the Devotion aspect while using Eidolon as a value card. This will involve a few changes (Kalonian Tusker, Garruk, Nykthos).

4 Elvish Mystic
4 Voyaging Satyr
2 Sylvan Caryatid
4 Kalonian Tusker
3 Boon Satyr
4 Courser of Kruphix
4 Eidolon of Blossoms
4 Polukranos, World Eater
2 Nylea, God of the Hunt
2 Garruk, Caller of Beasts
1 Hydra Broodmaster
3 Setessan Tactics
19 Forest
4 Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx

Ultimately though, the problem with a mono-Green build comes down to consistency issues. The green devotion builds are fairly prone to drawing too much mana with nothing to do with it, or opening hands with too many high-end cards that are forced mulligans. On top of this, Lifebane Zombie is a card that poses massive problems for green decks, and it usually comes with it’s friend Thoughtseize.

Splashing a colour to give the deck a bit more game seems like a great idea. Doing so will also allow the deck to play some temples, helping to improve draws, as well as interacting nicely with Courser. Let’s return to the four-of Courser and Eidolon shell.

If you can’t beat them, join them, right? Black offers a very appealing set of cards for this deck. It provides access to a very nice disruption package in Thoughtseize + Hero’s Downfall, and the deck also gets to run Brain Maggot as additional disruption that plays nicely with Eidolon. Herald of Torment is also an excellent enchantment creature that can help push through damage, even if bestowed on something like a Courser of Kruphix. Courser even helps mitigate the life loss!  Black even gives the deck the option of Doomwake Giant, which could be a very effective card against Elspeth, and Pharika, who makes enchantment tokens.

4 Elvish Mystic
4 Sylvan Caryatid
3 Brain Maggot
3 Herald of Torment
4 Courser of Kruphix
4 Eidolon of Blossoms
3 Polukranos, World Eater
1 Pharika, God of Affliction
4 Thoughtseize
3 Abrupt Decay
4 Hero’s Downfall
4 Temple of Malady
4 Overgrown Tomb
7 Forest
5 Swamp
3 Mutavault

Odd numbering is due to testing a new deck. Doomwake Giant was excluded in this build, although it might just be really awesome with Pharika, and it’s possible the deck should lean more in that direction. The sideboard for this deck also seems really good, and would include hits like Golgari Charm, Bow of Nylea, and Mistcutter Hydra. A single Whip also seems like it could be reasonable in this build.

What if we were to go maximum greed, however? White provides a sweet removal spell in Banishing light that also happens to be an enchantment, and allows the deck to use Elspeth as a top end win condition.

4 Sylvan Caryatid
2 Loxodon Smiter
4 Courser of Kruphix
4 Eidolon of Blossoms
3 Polukranos, World Eater
2 Archangel of Thune
2 Ajani, Mentor of Heroes
3 Elspeth, Sun’s Champion
4 Thoughtseize
3 Abrupt Decay
4 Hero’s Downfall
2 Banishing Light
4 Temple of Plenty
4 Temple of Malady
2 Temple of Silence
2 Overgrown Tomb
2 Godless Shrine
6 Forest
3 Swamp

This is easily the most midrange (and the most greedy) of the versions we have, and the one most pulling away from the Eidolon plan. It seems very likely to me that this deck wants Underworld Connections as its card advantage source instead, freeing up more slots for game-winning threats. A straight Green/White version of this deck might exist, but I feel like that’s basically worse then just playing Hexproof and killing people (Unflinching Courage is pretty good).

Ultimately, the Green/Black version looks like the most interesting to me. The Eidolon offsets the 1-for-1 nature of cards like Thoughtseize and Hero’s Downfall, allowing you to get ahead and force through damage with cards like Herald and Polukranos. The deck also has enough interaction with spot removal spells, and the sideboard should be capable of handling anything other decks can throw at it. I’m genuinely excited to actually try building that list and see how it plays.

While this was a fun foray into Constructed, I feel like talking some more Limited! Journey into Nyx has had plenty of time to show it’s influence on the format, so in the coming weeks, I’ll be talking about those changes, reviewing my initial impressions from the preview season, and showcasing the most fun decks I’ve played in the format so far.

Until then,

Random

The Golden Rule of Theros Limited

Today I’ll be covering an element of the Theros block draft structure that is the fundamental basis for how the draft structure plays out.

One of the themes of this set is is the hero overcoming the odds and becoming stronger through conflict. Gameplay-wise, this manifests in the form of auras, with Heroic abilities chipping in to help. This creates a fast snowballing affect, where your first guy gets an aura, becomes larger then everything else, and can attack without fear, before future auras come down and just put him far out of reach. Normally, this kind of gameplay is suppressed by the inherent card disadvantage of auras. If you spend your second turn on a two drop, and your third turn on a three mana aura, only to be met by a removal spell, you’ve spent two cards and two turns to get basically nothing.

As the designers wanted this style of gameplay to be viable within Theros (“building a battleship”, as it is colloquially known), changes had to be made in the environment to support it, such as bestow creatures “falling off” to negate the aura disadvantage. One of these changes was the scaling back of removal, in order to allow time for players to build up their heros.

Rage of Purphoros          Sip of Hemlock

Expensive Removal is the norm in Theros Draft

However, the scaling of the heroes is generally faster then the scaling of the removal, meaning that even if you have the answer, you might just be dead before you can cast it. To take a practical example, Ornitharch is considered to be one of the best uncommon in Born of the Gods. If tribute is paid, it is a 5/5 flying creature for five mana, which is a great rate for Limited.

Wingsteed Rider          Feral Invocation

Now Imagine we curve out a Wingsteed Rider, into a Feral Invocation. By combining just these two cards, we have built our own Ornitharch! Except instead of casting it on turn 5, we’re attacking with it on turn 4. That’s a huge difference. If we’re relying on the slower removal to answer this threat, we’re either taking 10, or losing some flying creatures of our own.

This leads to what I’ve dubbed “The Golden Rule” of Theros.

If you don’t have cheap interaction, you’re at a huge disadvantage

While cheap interaction is generally beneficial regardless of what format you’re playing (for example, a cheap interactive spell allows you to deploy threats while still interacting with you opponents game plan), in Theros, it takes on a far more important quality. If you let you opponent build a giant threat without any interaction, you’ll play behind very quickly, and the game might not be that long. While it is, of course, possible to play against a more attrition-based deck with a longer endgame plan (see Gray Merchant of Asphodel), the prevalence of aggressive heroic-based decks in this format means you need to be prepared to fight them.

“Cheap interacton” falls into two categories here: Cheap disruption, which is used to hit the small creatures before the become large threats, and cheap protection, used to ensure whatever giant threat you have is not dealt with by your opponent. We’ll investigate both categories, starting with cheap disruption. I’ll define “cheap” as being two mana or cheaper for the purposes of this discussion, pointing out exceptions where necessary. Once again I’ll only be covering commons and uncommons here. While something like Chained to the Rocks certainly applies, it won’t normally be found in the vast majority of Theros drafts. We’ll start with Theros:

White:

Last Breath         Glare of Heresy

As White is often the aggressive colour in Theros, it is generally more concerned with beating the opponent with a giant threat then with having answers. Nonetheless, these are the two primary answers within the colour. Last Breath is mainboard worthy, although an aggressive deck will be more concerned with the life gain then most. It hits most of the heroes before they get bigger, but will be ineffectual once they’ve gone large (this will be a common theme amongst these spells). Glare of Heresy is strictly sideboard only, but will take out a white hero no matter how big it is. Ray of Dissolution is three mana, but certainly falls in the disruption category.

Blue:

Voyage's End

Here we can see why Voyage’s End is one of the most important spells in the format. Not only does it meet our criteria for cheap disruption, it does so no matter what point it is drawn at. Any +1/+1 counters and auras the hero has acquired will disappear and not be present when it comes back. It’s bigger brother Griptide also brings these benefits, but Voyage still has the edge due to being cheaper and having the scry effect.
One could argue Triton Tactics has a place in this category as well, as the tapping effect is very strong if you can land it without losing your creatures. Dissolve is the catch-all answer of blue, but holding up three mana in this format is generally a big deal.

Black:

Pharika's Cure

The premier spell here is Pharika’s Cure. This spell helps a base-black deck bridge the early and mid game, killing an early threat while providing a little extra life, and as such is crucially imprtant for these decks.

Baleful Eidolon          Returned Phalanx

The other cards that help a black deck survive the early game. While the game plan of black decks tends to be more drawn out, as discussed, you can’t afford to sit there and ignore your opponent. These creatures help mitigate the damage any early aggression may cause. Baleful Eidolon, of course, can be bestowed if drawn late.

Red:

Lightning Strike          Magma Jet

Once again, we can see one of the accepted “best commons” in Lightning Strike. This is not a coincidence. Magma Jet also gets the job done in most cases, but misses a few notable targets like Nessian Courser.
With the advent of Born of the Gods and more 1-toughness creatures (Loyal Pegasus, Akroan Skyguard), Spark Jolt has improved considerably, and can be included in this category.

Green:

Sedge Scorpion

In general, the role of Green in Theros is to ramp into its bigger monsters and win by having larger creatures, the problem is, this isn’t necessary true with the heroes involved. This is another reason why Time to Feed, greens premier removal spell, is somewhat outclassed in this format. Not only is it a three mana sorcery, but it requires a decently sized creature on your board. By the time you’ve met all these conditions, your opponents giant threat may have grown out of reach.

Savage Surge

The untap clause puts this in a different category then the white pump spells in the set, making it more likely this card will be used to ambush something then force through damage, although it does go both ways.

Leafcrown Dryad          Defend the Hearth

Leafcrown Dryad is notable for being an early drop that interacts with fliers, as well as having bestow. Defend the Hearth is a sometimes-necessary sideboard for the aggressive decks. Shredding Winds is also fine here, although three mana escaped our definition.

So we can see a small handful of cards that are either useful in the early game or prevent the snowballing effect. What did Born of the Gods bring us in this category?

White:

Revoke Existence

Once again, White not being too concerned with having the answers in this block, although the effect is nice.

Blue:

Crypsis

A blue trick for creature-based strategies (so primarily white and green), this card is a little narrow, but will generally get the job done.

Nullify

A card that can either take down the cheap heroic creature if on the play, or can hit a bestowing creature late, Nullify is a very useful tool in the blue arsenal.

Retraction Helix

While technically meeting our requirements, it’s worth noting that Retraction Helix is slightly clunkier then it looks. The best targets for this tend to be three mana, such as Triton Fortune Hunter and Wavecrash Triton, so this generally ends up being cast on turn 4. Nonetheless, it still has all the advantages of bounce in this format, so is still a very reliable spell.

Vortex Elemental

The blue Sedge Scorpion, this little guy does an excellent job of deterring attacks. Any ground guy with a sufficient number of auras won’t want to go near him, and in the late game he can just hunt them out instead.

Blue:

Bile Blight

Removal designed for constructed sticks out in the Theros landscape (this card was designed to target multiple Burning-Tree Emissary draws in standard). This does an excellent job dealing with early threats, and occasionally you’ll even get a two-for-one.
Asphyxiate deserves a mention here despite being a three mana sorcery.

Red:

Fall of the Hammer

While not always being played on turn two (unless you played a Sedge Scorpion, in which case you’re living the dream), this is generally good enough to snag an early creature.

Searing Blood

Like Pharika’s Cure, two damage to an early creature for two mana is good enough in this format. The double red in the mana cost ensures that this only goes into base red decks.

Green:

Unravel the Æther

Vastly outclassing Fade into Antiquity, this Naturalize variant, while not dealing with the heroic creature itself, ensures it doesn’t stay too big, allowing greens creatures to be a match.

Now we’ll deal with cheap protection. In general, these are the spells you’ll cast alongside your auras and pump effects in order to dodge the removal that your opponent will throw at you. Not even card will protect you from every effect above, but this should give you a good idea of what to look for. We’ll again start with Theros and then move into Born of the Gods.

White:

Gods Willing

One of the best spells in Theros, this card allows you to protect your creature from any of the above effects, get a heroic trigger, and scry… all for the low, low price of one mana. Applying what was said above, it’s not hard to see why this is one of the best cards for the heroic deck.

Black:

Boon of Erebos

This card is slightly under the radar, as black does not tend to be a heroic deck. Nonetheless, as a “worse” God’s Willing, this still does everything you want a one mana protection spell to do.

Red:

Coordinated Assault

Likely the most powerful one mana trick in the format. Red isn’t generally concerned with protecting its creatures, but this powerful spell does that and more.

As we can see, there aren’t a great deal of cheap protective effects, which isn’t too surprising. As such, it is likely any such effects in Born of the Gods should be prioritized highly, such that you can focus on your disruption and threats in Theros.

White:

Acolyte's Reward

Acolyte’s Reward is an odd one in the sense that it’s a weird hybrid of the protective/disruptive split. In general, I see it as a protective spell with a possibleupside, hence its placement here.

Hold at Bay

While hardly the most exciting spell, this will generally get the job done. It also triggers heroic, for what that is worth.

Red:

Rise to the Challenge

Admittedly more of a trick then a protective spell, but red doesn’t have pure protection.

Green:

Mortal's Resolve

One of greens strongest acquistions in Born of the Gods, this is a very strong protection spell that generally only gets foiled by bounce. A very strong card in any green deck.

That’s all for now! Hopefully people enjoyed the more theory-based article, and that this has helped your understanding of what makes the format tick. I don’t have many drafts lined up in the near future, so I’ll probably have to come up with some more archetype breakdowns to fill in the time.

Until next time,

Random