MTGGoldfish is supported by its audience. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn a commission.
Browse > Home / Strategy / Articles / Fish Five-0: Esper Control (Standard, Magic Arena)

Fish Five-0: Esper Control (Standard, Magic Arena)

Can a good ol "land-go" playstyle control deck still exist? Lets see how it fares in the queues!

Loading Indicator


The deck is called "Land-Go" as we just hope to play our lands and pass the turn to our opponents as we play reactively. Outside of a Teferi, Time Raveler preventing us from doing things, we want to remove things and counter things on the opponent's turn.

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

For right now, the meta is low on counterspells outside of a few Mystical Disputes and the few brave Simic Flash players. This is probably because a resolved Teferi, Time Ravaler just makes too many cards in our deck blank draws, but with Teferi only seeing play in small numbers, its time to make our opponents play around open blue mana! Once we've run out of answers and need a way to reload, we turn to our friend G-Diddy!

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

More often than not, this card will save us as that second ability will tap down things like a Wicked Wolf that is currently going unanswered. On top of that, a 3/3 card advantage machine that we can potentially protect or bounce back with cards like Teferi, Time Raveler and Time Wipe gives it even more value if left unanswered. 

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

With where the meta is, we all understand how important this card is. Almost every threat right now is green and being able to have an easy way to answer an opposing Teferi, Time Ravaler goes a long way. 

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

Kaya, Orzhov Usurper just seems amazing with how many cat decks are running around right now. Remember, when you have this card to use it on Witch's Oven and then worry about the cat later as the Oven enables a ton for their deck. It may also seem ridiculous but having Kaya eat all your opponent's food is not only a wonderful sentence to type out but also an efficient way to turn off Wicked Wolf. Against the Order of Midnight and Find // Finality decks, we can pick off their key graveyard targets and at the very least, Kaya gains us two life!

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

As you may have noticed, I have four copies of Leyline of the Void in the sideboard. This is a way for us to help us slow down the cat decks and a few copies aren't the worst against the Golgari decks trying to grind you out with cards like Order of Midnight and etc. Just remember when bringing these cards in, you take out Drown in the Loch as that is a bad time for you. 



For any aggro decks you do run into, I think we have ways to fight them with all of our removal and sweepers game one but game two and three, we load up even more so I like our odds post board.

Against all the Cat decks, stop that oven! The next key card I look for in these matchups is their Trail of Crumbs. This matchup feels a little unfavored game one but you can steal some games with Kaya, Orzhov Usurper and Cry of the Carnarium. Post board this should favor us a bit more but it's not an auto-win even with all of our sideboard hate. If you run into the Jund variant, make sure you have an answer for their Mayhem Devil as that card kills us quickly. Especially combined with God-Eternal Bontu.

If Simic doesn't get a ton of bans by the time this video comes up, just be ready to play a rough game, as game one will be great for us but post-board there will be Veil of Summer. Sometimes an early Oko, Thief of Crowns can feel scary but it's definitely winnable. A card that absolutely can't stay around is Nissa, Who Shakes the World. If they have a Nissa, please kill that immediately. 

In the event you run into Azorius Flash/Control deck, know that they're probably favored as the number of dead cards we'll have will be significant. Just make sure Teferi, Time Raveler doesn't stick around and be sure to play around a potential Teferi, Time Raveler + Finale of Glory at the end of your turn. This might be one of our worst match ups as we really are underprepared to fight the mirror.


The deck ended at 3-2 due to some unfortunate draws. We got stuck on lands and maybe that comes with not playing Opt. I think this deck could return to form if there are bannings as Veil of Summer just destroys us. If there are bans, this is the list I'd play as I figure the most popular decks after an Oko, Thief of Crowns banning will be some kind of Cat deck, Simic Flash, Temur Reclamation, and Fires of Invention. Mortify might be a card we need to run multiples of again as it blows up so many things.

  Loading Indicator

If you ever have a deck you want to be made into a video feel free to leave a like, comment, Email, and subscribe to the MTGGoldfish Youtube Channel 

-Your Friendly Neighborhood AsianAvenger

Twitter: @TheAsianAvenger || Twitch: || Email:

More in this Series

Show more ...

More on MTGGoldfish ...

Image for Fish Five-0: Grixis Amass (Standard, Magic Arena) fish five-o
Fish Five-0: Grixis Amass (Standard, Magic Arena)

Wondered what the Grixis Amass deck looks like from Mythic Championship 6? Well, TheAsianAvenger took it for a spin!

Nov 15 | by TheAsianAvenger
Image for Assassin's Creed Spoilers — June 18 | Debut Stream and Legendary Assassins! daily spoilers
Assassin's Creed Spoilers — June 18 | Debut Stream and Legendary Assassins!

Assassin's Creed spoilers have started with a ton of legends and much more.

Jun 18 | by mtggoldfish
Image for Single Scoop: I'm Sorry For What I Said About Phlage single scoop
Single Scoop: I'm Sorry For What I Said About Phlage

It's okay to be wrong and I was especially wrong about Phlage, Titan of Fire's Fury!

Jun 18 | by TheAsianAvenger
Image for Commander Clash Podcast 152: Underrated Modern Horizons 3 Cards commander clash podcast
Commander Clash Podcast 152: Underrated Modern Horizons 3 Cards

Modern Horizons 3 cards that have been flying under the radar!

Jun 18 | by mtggoldfish

Layout Footer

Never miss important MTG news again!

All emails include an unsubscribe link. You may opt-out at any time. See our privacy policy.

Follow Us

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Twitch
  • Instagram
  • Tumblr
  • RSS
  • Email
  • Discord
  • YouTube

Price Preference

Default Price Switcher