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Much Abrew: Tiamat Giant Surprise (Historic Brawl)


The Core Set 2011 Titan cycle is one of the most iconic creature cycles in the history of the game. Sun Titan, Primeval Titan, Frost Titan, Grave Titan, and Inferno Titan are the rare group of creatures from more than a decade ago that still hold up today, even after 13 years of power creep. It turns out that being a 6/6 for six with a keyword, an enters-the-battlefield trigger, and an attack trigger is enough to make for a pretty good threat, even by 2023 standards. The cycle recently came to Arena for the first time in Historic Anthology 7, and as soon as I saw them, I knew I wanted to try to build a deck around all five of the Titans. The end result is today's deck: Five-Color Giant Tribal Tiamat Surprise! What wild things can the deck do in Historic Brawl? Let's get to the video and find out; then, we'll talk more about the deck!

Much Abrew: Tiamat Titan Surprise

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The Deck

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The idea for today's deck was simple: I knew I wanted to build a Historic Brawl deck based around the five M11 Titans. The six-drops are iconic, powerful, and one of my personal favorite creature cycles of all time, which seemed like a good enough reason to build a deck around them. While I knew I wanted to focus on getting all five Titans on the battlefield as often as possible, the big question was how best to go about achieving this plan. Obviously, the deck would have to be five colors, but beyond that, there are a ton of different possibilities. Eventually, I realized the answer was right in front of me on the type line: all of the Titans are Giants!

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While five-color Giants isn't really a common thing, there actually are some pretty good reasons to build a five-color deck full of Giants. There are several sweepers that only remove non-Giant creatures, like Realm-Cloaked Giant, Cyclone Summoner, and Battle of Frost and Fire. Playing a deck full of Giants would essentially turn these cards into Plague Winds, letting us keep all of our creatures while destroying our opponent's board. 

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While the big black and green additions to the deck aren't exactly Giant themed (although there are some solid black and red Giants, even outside of the Titan cycle, like Kroxa, Titan of Death's Hunger and Beanstalk Giant), these colors are super important to making the deck function. Green gives us the ability to ramp and fix our mana, which is especially important for a Giant deck since most Giants cost six or more mana, and our creatures are split between all five colors. Cards like Cultivate, Beanstalk Giant, and friends help make sure we can actually cast all of our sweet Giants. Meanwhile, black offers tutors, which is essential to our deck because we sort of have a hidden commander that we really need to find to make our deck function. But more on this in a minute.

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After deciding we'd be a five-color Giant deck, the next question was what commander would lead the brew. Somehow, there isn't really a five-color Giant tribal commander yet, although I'm sure we'll get one eventually, and cards like Morophon, the Boundless—which work as cheat codes for five-color tribal decks that don't have a real legend—don't exist on Magic Arena. As I browsed through all of the five-color legends on the client, I found several that would work, like Esika, God of the Tree or Jodah, Archmage Eternal, but they weren't especially exciting or flavorful. Then, I stumbled on Tiamat and realized that its ability to tutor up five creatures from our deck would be perfect since our primary goal is to find all five of the Titans as often as possible. The problem is Tiamat only finds Dragons. But then it struck me: What if our Giants were Dragons?

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I mentioned earlier that black tutors are really important to our plan because we have a hidden commander. It's Maskwood Nexus. Maskwood Nexus turns all of our creatures into all creature types, which means if we can find it and get it on the battlefield, Tiamat can tutor up Sun Titan, Frost Titan, Grave Titan, Inferno Titan, and Primeval Titan, making it (oddly) the perfect Giant commander. So, our deck's primary goal is simple: find Maskwood Nexus, ramp into Tiamat, use Tiamat to tutor up the entire Titan cycle, and win with Giant beats. But it gets even more spectacular...

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Primeval Titan's enters-the-battlefield and attack trigger lets us tutor up two lands, which arguably makes it the strongest member of the Titan cycle. It turns out that this ability also works hilariously well with Maskwood Nexus because we can use Primeval Titan to tutor up The World Tree, which we can sacrifice for 10 mana to tutor out any number of Gods and put them on the battlefield. Thanks to Maskwood Nexus, all of our Giants are technically Gods as well, so we can put literally every creature in our deck on the battlefield, easily winning us the game!

Wrap-Up

Is the deck good? Historic Brawl is weird because the games aren't tracked by Untapped.GG, so I'm actually not 100% sure what our exact record was, but I think we won right around 50% of the time. The deck is hilarious and super powerful in the late game, but it's also overloaded with expensive Giants, which means if we don't draw our ramp, we can get run over by aggro without doing much of anything at all. 

The plan of using Tiamat as our commander is risky but super powerful when it works. Since we don't have any actual Dragons in our deck without Maskwood Nexus, we generally don't ever want to play Tiamat—it just doesn't do anything. But that's mostly fine because our deck is full of so many massive Giants that we usually have something to play while we are waiting to find Maskwood Nexus. When we do find Maskwood Nexus, it's hard to lose. Grabbing all five Titans is absurd value, although we did have one game where we actually did the Tiamat Titan thing and lost because the turn after we cast Tiamat, our opponent played an Elesh Norn, Mother of Machines, which is pretty good against six-drops built around enters-the-battlefield abilities. All this is to say, while there are certainly games where our plan doesn't come together, Tiamat might actually be the best five-color Giant commander, as weird as that probably sounds!

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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