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Budget Magic: Mono-Red Storm (Historic)

Olá, Budget Magic lovers, it's that time once again! I know, I know, Budget Magic doesn't usually go live until Monday, but today's deck is sweet enough that I didn't want to wait. So what are we playing? Mono-Red Storm in Historic, of course! Thanks to Strixhaven's Mystical Archives it's now possible to Storm off in the format, and the archetype can be pretty cheap to build. Our deck today technically features four mythics and 16 rares, although eight of our "rares" are really commons (Faithless Looting and Grapeshot) with jacked up rarity (thanks Wizards). Regardless, the deck is super fun, cheap and surprisingly competitive! How good is Mono-Red Storm in Historic? Let's get to the video and find out; then, we'll talk more about the deck!

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Budget Magic: Mono-Red Storm

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The Deck

Mono-Red Storm is a combo deck. Our goal is to cast 19 spells in a turn and then cast a Grapeshot to burn our opponent out of the game! Since I'm writing this article on Sunday morning, I'm going to keep it a bit shorter than normal. But here's the plan:

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The easiest way for us to cast 19 spells in a turn is looping Grinning Ignus with either Birgi, God of Storytelling or Runaway Steam-Kin on the battlefield. In their own way either Birgi or Runaway Steam-Kin make us back one mana when we cast Grinning Ignus, which we can use to bounce and replay Grinning Ignus to repeat the process. If we have both Birgi and Runaway Steam-Kin (or two Runaway Steam-Kins) we actually generate mana with the loop, giving us infinite mana as a bonus. 

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While Hazoret's Monument isn't essential for the combo - we can win without it - it does do two important things. First, reducing the cost of red creature spells allows us to have some really explosive turns. For example, if we play Hazoret's Monument on turn three on turn four we'll have enough mana to cast Birgi, God of Storytelling into Grinning Ignus and immediately start our infinite storm loop thanks to the mana Birgi makes when we cast Grinning Ignus, which means we don't need to leave Birgi, God of Storytelling on the battlefield for a turn to expose it to removal. Second, Hazoret's Monument allows us to rummage an infinite number of times as we repeatedly cast Grinning Ignus, which guarantees that we'll find Grapeshot to finish the game. Once we cast at least 19 spells we can cast Grapeshot, get a ton of copies thanks to the storm mechanic and burn our opponent out of the game for the win, potentially as early as turn four!

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The rest of our main deck is a bunch of cheap card draw spells to help us dig through our deck for combo pieces and also trigger Runaway Steam-Kin and Birgi, God of Storytelling fairly (while not common, we can get a storm count high enough to kill our opponent without drawing Grinning Ignus by chaining together enough of these spells). Ox of Agonas is a sneaky all star in our deck. All of our other card draw spells are either card neutral (we spend a card to draw a card) or even card disadvantage (Faithless Looting and Merchant of the Vale technically leaves us down a card). Ox of Agonas gives us a cheap way to draw extra cards to keep our big combo turns going and is especially powerful if we can loot it into the graveyard and then escape it for two mana. 

The Sideboard

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The main goal of our sideboard is to fight through various Storm hate cards. Abrade answers Damping Sphere, Grafdigger's Cage and creatures like Thalia, Guardian of Thraben or Meddling Mage. Fry is to answer Narset, Parter of Veils, but also answers annoying white hate creatures. Meanwhile, Thermo-Alchemist and Electrostatic Field gives us a semi-transformation sideboard plan. If our opponent is overloaded on hate cards we can sideboard out some (or even all) of our combo and try to win like a weird Memekin deck by playing cheap cantrips and pinging our opponent to death.

Wrap Up

All in all we went 3-2 with Mono-Red Storm, although I still feel like we should have beat Sultai Ultimatum. In game three our opponent had four removal spells over the first five turns to keep Birgi, God of Storytelling and Runaway Steam-Kin off of the battlefield, when if just one of our mana generating creatures had stuck we had the win in hand. Even though we lost the match, it felt like we could compete with the deck and were potentially even favored in the matchup.

In general I'm really happy with where the deck landed, especially considering the budget restriction. The deck felt competitive, fun and cheap. In fact, the only thing I dislike about the deck is that Faithless Looting and Grapeshot are unnecessarily increasing the price on Magic Arena thanks to their inflated rarity. If you like comboing and storming off, but don't have a ton of wildcards, I'd certainly recommend giving the deck a try! It's fast and consistent, and as we saw in our last match, surprising strong at fighting through the various hate cards that our opponents might have.

Ultra/Non-Budget Storm

As far as making Mono-Red Storm even cheaper, I don't really think it's possible. Runaway Steam-Kin, Birgi, God of Storytelling and Ox of Agonas are the three "real" rares and mythics in our deck, and they are all essential. Probably our best bet for the archetype becoming cheaper on Arena is Wizards eventually reprinting Grapeshot and Faithless Looting at their correct rarity so they cost common wildcards rather than rare wildcards.

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As far as non-budget Storm, I'm not sure I'd change much in the main deck. Going into a second color for more sideboard options could be worthwhile though. While Red can deal with creatures and artifacts, it can't easily deal with enchantments like Deafening Silence or Rest in Peace (although Chaos Warp does offer an option, which is probably worth considering for the sideboard if you have a few more rare wildcards to spend). Going into white would allow us to play Rip Apart, which does basically everything we want in a sideboard card, not only getting rid of artifacts and hatebears, but also enchantments like Deafening Silence and even Narset, Parter of Veils after a single -2!


Anyway, that's all for today! As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, opinions and suggestions in the comments, and you can reach me on Twitter @SaffronOlive, or at

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