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Much Abrew: Selesnya Tokens (Standard)


Hello, everyone! Welcome to another episode of Much Abrew About Nothing. Normally, Much Abrew runs for about a week as our Instant Deck Tech, but this week, thanks to the release of Guilds of Ravnica on Friday, we're playing a deck that we featured in a deck tech only a couple of days ago: Selesnya Tokens! Selesnya got a ton of sweet new cards from Guilds of Ravnica, with March of the Multitudes specifically looking like a game-ending bomb in the right deck, but how does it work in practice? Can the guild beat a Goblin Chainwhirler? What support cards best support our powerful finishers? Let's get to the video and find out; then, we'll talk more about the deck!

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Much Abrew: Selesnya Tokens (Standard)

Discussion

  • That went well. We played a friendly league and ended up cruising to a 5-0 finish (and finally opened some good Treasure Chests!). We played against a ton of aggro decks (which isn't all that surprising in the early days of a new Standard format) but managed to beat a Goblin Chainwhirler or two along the way, which is pretty impressive for a deck built around making 1/1 tokens.
  • March of the Multitudes is absurdly powerful and probably the biggest reason to play Selesnya Tokens. It's really hard to resolve it and go on to lose the game, and most of the time, we kill our opponent the turn after casting March of the Multitudes. While it's a good card on rate, being instant speed makes it especially powerful, since it allows us to make a potentially lethal board while avoiding things like Goblin Chainwhirler and Cleansing Nova (and also counterspells, to some extent). If Selesnya catches on in Standard, you're going to want to make sure to have an answer in your deck. Counterspells like Negate can help if you always leave mana up, while Fiery Cannonade and Settle the Wreckage offer two instant-speed ways of dealing with all the attackers. 
  • The second biggest reason to play Selesnya Tokens is Venerated Loxodon. While March of the Multitudes gives us an inevitable late game, Venerated Loxodon gives us an extremely scary aggro start. When we have a copy in our opening hand, it's pretty common to end Turn 3 with at least three creatures and eight power on the battlefield, and in Magical Christmas Land, where we have multiple copies of Saproling Migration or a bunch of Legion's Landings, we can have five or six creatures and up to 14 power on the battlefield on the third turn of the game. That's enough to beat just about any deck in the format.
  • The final piece of the puzzle is Pride of Conquerors and Flower // Flourish, which allow us to close out the game by surprise, with one big attack. Pride of Conquerors was somewhere between very good and game ending every time we cast it. While there is some risk of flooding out on pump spells and not drawing enough creatures, I could see adding another copy to the deck because it's the card we want most after we get some tokens on the battlefield. Meanwhile, Flower // Flourish is basically a cheat card, since we can count it as a land rather than a spell, but it's a land that sometimes gives our huge board of tokens +2/+2 until end of turn and just kills our opponent. 
  • Emmara, Soul of the Accord is interesting. It can spiral out of control if it goes unblocked, but as a 2/2 for two, it often just sits on the battlefield and waits until we can convoke something to make an extra 1/1 token. Next time I try the deck, I'm going to go with a 2-2 split of Emmara, Soul of the Accord and Shanna, Sisay's Legacy in the two-drop slot and see how it feels. This being said, we did just go 5-0, so the deck is more than good enough to play as-is.
  • District Guide seems weird, but it does work pretty well with convoke, giving us a body and a land, which means it makes two mana for convoke spells, in a weird sort of way. It's also worth mentioning that District Guide could facilitate a splash, perhaps for something like Negate or Teferi, Hero of Dominaria out of the sideboard. While playing straight Selesnya makes sense for now, as the format develops, it's worth keeping in mind that our good mana and fixing like District Guide does make splashing a specific answer very possible and not all that painful.
  • As far as other changes I'd make to the deck, there really aren't many, although I am interested in trying Huatli, Radiant Champion, if not in the main deck, then at least in the sideboard for slower matchups. While it might prove to be unnecessary, our wall of tokens provides a good way to keep a planeswalker's loyalty high, and it's really hard to lose if we can ultimate Huatli, Radiant Champion, thanks to the endless card advantage she generates.
  • Otherwise, there isn't much to say about the deck. The plan is pretty straightforward: flood the board with tokens and kill the opponent quickly. The good news is that the plan works surprisingly well. 
  • So, should you play Selesnya Tokens? Based on our experience, the answer is pretty clearly yes. I think the deck has a very legitimate shot of being a tier-one deck in Standard, even with Goblin Chainwhirler still running around. The combination of almost unbeatable fast starts thanks to Venerated Loxodon and an almost unbeatable late game thanks to March of the Multitudes makes it extremely scary. If you like making tokens and are looking for a competitive deck for Guilds of Ravnica Standard, Selesnya Tokens seems like a very legitimate option!

Conclusion

Anyway, that's all for today. Don't forget to vote for next week's deck by liking, commenting on, and subscribing to Instant Deck Tech videos! 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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