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Budget Magic: Mystic Terror Combo (4 Mythic / 11 Rare) | Standard


Selamat siang, Budget Magic lovers, it's that time once again! This week, we are heading to our new Kaldheim Standard format once again, this time to play a new Kaldheim-based combo: Mystic Terror Combo. The goal is to get a Terror of the Peaks on the battlefield, target it with Mystic Reflection, and then play something that makes two tokens like Forbidden Friendship or Dwarven Reinforcements, both of which will come into play as copies of Terror of the Peaks and throw 20 direct damage at our opponent's face! The rest of the deck has some light control elements to keep us alive long enough to set up our combo, along with a bunch of ways to dig through our deck for combo pieces! Can the combo of Mystic Reflection and Terror of the Peaks work in Standard on a 15 total rare / mythic budget? Let's get to the video and find out; then, we'll talk more about the deck!

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Budget Magic: Mystic Terror Combo

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The Deck

Mystic Terror Combo, as its name suggests, is a combo deck. We're trying to find and resolve three specific combo pieces. If we do, we should win the game on the spot without ever having to attack! Let's walk through the combo itself step by step and then we'll talk about our backup plan and utility cards.

Step 1: Terror of the Peaks

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Combo piece number one is the only real creature in our deck: Terror of the Peaks. Without a Terror of the Peaks on the battlefield, it's really, really hard for our deck to actually win (although we technically can beat down with tokens, it's unlikely to be enough to win). Transmogrify is in our deck to find Terror of the Peaks as consistently as possible. We can use it to exile a random token and know that we'll end up with Terror of the Peaks 100% of the time. Along with finding Terror, Transmogrify has another benefit: it finds Terror of the Peaks at the discounted price of just four mana. To win the game with our combo, we not only need Terror of the Peaks but also one or two mana for Mystic Reflection and another two mana for a token maker. Getting Terror of the Peaks with Transmogrify means we can pull off the entire combo in one turn for a total of seven mana rather than eight, which is very relevant in some games.

Step 2: Mystic Reflection

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Combo piece number two is Mystic Reflection, which we need to target our Terror of the Peaks to make our tokens come into play as copies of Terror rather than relatively useless 1/1s or 2/1s. While we don't have a guaranteed way to tutor up Mystic Reflection like we do with Terror of the Peaks and Transmogrify, we do have the full four copies of Silundi Vision to help find the instant as consistently as possible. Ideally, we'll foretell Mystic Reflection early in the game so that when we're ready to combo, we can cast it for just one mana rather than two, although we can combo by casting Mystic Reflection naturally from our hand if we have enough mana.

Step 3: Two Tokens

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The final piece of our combo puzzle is a card that puts two tokens into play at once. For this, we have two options: Forbidden Friendship, which always costs two mana, and Dwarven Reinforcements, which costs two mana if we can foretell it earlier in the game. If we can first Mystic Reflection a Terror of the Peaks, both of the tokens will actually be copies of Terror of the Peaks. This gives us exactly 20 damage to our opponent's face, with the original Terror of the Peaks dealing 10 when the two new token copies come into play and each of the tokens triggering each other for five more damage. It's pretty common for our deck to deal zero damage to our opponent before we combo and then win the game by surprise with the full 20 damage on our combo turn!

The Backup Plan

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If we can't win with our combo for some reason, our backup plan is Shark Typhoon, which is actually extremely flexible in our deck. If we are on the combo plan, we can use Shark Typhoon to make a small Shark token on our opponent's end step, untap, and Transmogrify the Shark into a Terror of the Peaks to combo off. On the other hand, if we aren't winning with the combo, hard-casting Shark Typhoon is actually extremely strong in our deck thanks to all of our foretell cards. One of the weird quirks of foretell is that even though we can cast the cards at a discount from exile, they still have their normal converted mana cost, which means if we cast something like Dwarven Reinforcements for two mana with foretelling we'll get a 4/4 Shark along with the two 2/1 Dwarf tokens. Sticking and protecting a Shark Typhoon are usually enough to win us the game over the course of two or three turns. Things get even crazier if we happen to get a Terror of the Peaks onto the battlefield alongside Shark Typhoon because each Shark also offers direct damage with Terror of the Peaks!

Interaction and Card Draw

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Rounding out the non-land cards in our main deck are Fire Prophecy for removal, Saw It Coming as a counter, and Behold the Multiverse as another foretell card that can dig through our deck to find our combo pieces. 

The Mana

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Because the non-land cards in our deck take up our entire 15-rare / mythic budget (sadly, we need four mythics and four rares just for the combo, which doesn't leave a lot of rares / mythics left over to round out the deck), we have zero rare lands in our mana base. While this does lead to some tapped-land clunkiness, Volatile Fjord is actually solid in our deck since it is a dual land that counts as a Mountain for Dwarven Mine. As for Dwarven Mine, it makes a single 1/1 token, which means it isn't great with our Mystic Reflection combo since it only gives us a single Terror of the Peaks, which isn't enough to win the game immediately. However, Dwarven Mine is a great way to make a token to exile to Transmogrify into Terror of the Peaks, which makes it solid in the deck. If you have them in your collection, a Triome that makes blue and red is a strict upgrade over Swiftwater Cliffs since it will give us more Mountains to turn on Dwarven Mine (plus, cycling is better than gaining a life). 

Playing the Deck

By far the most important thing to realize about Mythic Terror Combo is that it's a combo deck. It's going to go badly if you play it like a normal deck (just casting your cards on curve). Rather than running out Forbidden Friendship on Turn 2 to make a couple of tokens, it's usually better to hold onto it for after we find our other combo pieces and can use Forbidden Friendship to win the game right away. 

Another big challenge with the deck is managing Terror of the Peaks. In a perfect world, we want to hold onto Terror of the Peaks until we can play the full combo in the same turn because if we run out Terror of the Peaks early with the plan of comboing off on the next turn, the odds of Terror of the Peaks dying goes up significantly since we turn on our opponent's sorcery-speed removal, like Binding the Old Gods and Elspeth Conquers Death. However, there are times when we're going to die before we get enough mana to play the entire combo in one turn and basically have to just run out Terror of the Peaks and hope that it manages to survive. 

Oh yeah, it's also important to note that if our opponent kills the token we're targeting with Transmogrify before Transmogrify resolves, the spell fizzles, and we don't get our Terror of the Peaks. If possible, try to Transmogrify when the opponent is tapped down, especially if you're up against a deck that is likely to have instant-speed removal. 

Wrap-Up

All in all, we finished 2-2 with Mythic Terror Combo. I played a ton of games with the deck tuning and testing, and overall, I finished with a bit less than a 50% win percentage. While the combo itself is powerful and really good at catching opponents by surprise, perhaps the biggest issue with the deck is that it doesn't have a lot of raw power, instead relying on sneaky synergies to pick up wins. Sneaky synergies can be tough in Standard when most decks are built around some sort of rawly powerful payoff like Embercleave, The Great Henge, or Showdown of the Skalds. Sometimes, we spend a lot of time and effort staying alive and setting up the combo only to be janked out by one busted card that slips through our defenses. 

As far as changes to make to the deck, there isn't much to do while sticking to the 15-rare / mythic budget. Terror of the Peaks and Mystic Reflection are basically uncuttable because they are the cards that make the combo work, and both Shark Typhoon and Transmogrify are really good in the deck. While I'm sure some sideboard slots could be shifted around, I think the current build of Mystic Terror Combo is about as good as it gets on a 15-rare / mythic budget.

So, should you play Mythic Terror Combo? I don't think it's the most competitive Budget Magic deck we've ever played, but it is good enough to pick up wins, and the combo itself is really unique and powerful! While I'm not sure you could use it to rank up to mythic or anything like that, it is a really fun option for jamming some unranked games or playing on the lower levels of the Arena ladder. 

Ultra-Budget Mystic Terror Combo

Sadly, no ultra-budget list this week. Because the combo itself eats up so much of the budget, there really isn't a way to cut the number of rares / mythics in the deck without either dropping the combo (which is the entire point of the deck) or making the combo significantly less consistent. 

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As for the non-budget build of Mystic Terror Combo, the biggest upgrades are in the mana base and sideboard. Fabled Passage and Ketria Triome allow us to upgrade our dual lands, while Storm's Wrath offers a much-needed sweeper to buy us an extra turn or two against creature-based decks. All in all, the game plan of the non-budget build is the same—it just gets a few extra tools (and more consistent mana) that were outside of the budget of the build we played on video.

Conclusion

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 SaffronOlive@MTGGoldfish.com.



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