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Much Abrew: Captain Combo (Historic)

Hello, everyone! Welcome to another episode of Much Abrew About Nothing. This week, we're heading to Historic to play the most busted card from Alchemy: Inquisitor Captain. While Inquisitor Captain is a really strong value card in pretty much any deck with a bunch of cheap creatures, as a sort of super-powered version of Collected Company, our deck is going deep on the Captain. The idea is that we can play a single copy of Inquisitor Captain and hopefully end up building an insurmountable, game-ending board by using Inquisitor Captain to find cheap clones (to copy Captain) and blink creatures like Soulherder (to blink Inquisitor Captain and reuse its enters-the-battlefield trigger). In theory, a single Inquisitor Captain can put something like 10 bodies and 30 power on the battlefield, as early as Turn 3! The end result is a deck with a combo similar to the Neoform combo in Historic but that also gets to play a bunch of good cards, rather than janky combo pieces, giving us a much better chance of winning fairly. How good is Inquisitor Captain in Historic? Let's get to the video and find out on this week's Much Abrew About Nothing

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Much Abrew: Captain Combo

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The Deck

  • Record-wise, Captain Combo we insane. We finished 5-0 and only dropped a single game along the way. I mentioned in the video that Captain Combo felt like it might be the best deck in Historic. While the sample size is still fairly small, I don't think I'm being hyperbolic: the deck is pretty busted.
  • As far as the deck itself, it's pretty simple: we have Inquisitor Captain and 16 creatures that allow us to reuse its enters-the-battlefield trigger if we find them with Inquisitor Captain (eight Clones in Glasspool Mimic and Mirror Image and eight blink creatures in Soulherder and Charming Prince). With 32 Inquisitor Captain "hits" in our deck, we're roughly 50% to hit at least one of these creatures with each Inquisitor Captain activation. Even if we whiff, it's not a huge deal because we're likely finding something like Grizzled Huntmaster to tutor something from our sideboard or Skyclave Apparition for removal. 
  • A 50/50 shot at respinning with Inquisitor Captain might not sound great. But when you consider that we also have Ephemerate (to blink Inquisitor Captain) and that once we find a Soulherder, it's an extra Inquisitor Captain activation every turn, if we can draw a single Inquisitor Captain, the end result most of the time is that we will build a massive board and win the game!
  • The only real weakness of the deck is wraths, although they are far from unbeatable, as we saw in our matches. Cards like Thalia, Guardian of Thraben and Elite Spellbinder from the sideboard help (even in game one thanks to Grizzled Huntmaster), but there are plenty of options if we need more help against sweepers, ranging from Guardian of Faith to counterspells like Dovin's Veto. For now, I'm happy with the current build of Captain Combo. But if control becomes a problem, it should be easy enough to adjust the list to beat it.
  • Maybe the best comparison for Captain Combo is the Neoform combo deck that used to be popular in the format. While our deck isn't quite as fast (we don't have haste to attack with all of our Captains immediately), it's much more resilient. The big problem with Neoform combo is that you have to play a bunch of bad cards that don't really do much outside of the combo to make it work. Our deck is almost all good cards that are powerful outside of the combo, but we still have the potential to dump 10 or 20 power on the battlefield as early as Turn 3.
  • So, should you play Captain Combo in Historic? I legitimately think it's one of the best decks in the format at the moment, although there is one problem: Inquisitor Captain is so good that I'm expecting it will get nerfed at some point in the near future (potentially to only trigger if you cast it, which would eliminate all of our blink and clone shenanigans and basically kill our deck). I think Captain Combo is a great option if you want to win a bunch in Historic right now. Just keep in mind that the fun might be short-lived thanks to a nerf and that Wizards still is refusing to refund wildcards for nerfs, which makes buying into the deck risky. (Thankfully, you can use most of the cards in the deck to build some sort of Soulherder blink deck even without Inquisitor Captain, so it wouldn't be a complete loss.)


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

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