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Playing Pauper: WU Rhystic Tron


Welcome to the first edition of Playing Pauper, where I show off Pauper decks in the new Magic Online Pauper League. Pauper is a sweet format, but we've been lacking Pauper content on MTGGoldfish. I'm happy to change that, and I hope you enjoy the series.

I'm starting the series off with one of my favorite decks in the format: White Blue Rhystic Tron. It's been around in the past, but has never been popular. This deck utilizes the Tron lands (Urza's Tower and company) to race ahead of the opponent. It can overwhelm the opponent by playing an early Ulamog's Crusher, prevent our opponent from dealing damage with Rhystic Circle, or kill the opponent in one blow with a giant Kaervek's Torch.

We'll break down the deck after the videos, but first a quick reminder. If you enjoy Playing Pauper and other video content on MTGGoldfish, be sure to subscribe to the MTGGoldfish YouTube channel to keep up on all the latest and greatest.

WU Rhystic Tron Intro

WU Rhystic Tron vs Mono Blue Delver

WU Rhystic Tron vs Kuldotha Jeskai

WU Rhystic Tron vs Burn

WU Rhystic Tron vs Mono Black Control

WU Rhystic Tron vs Mono White Tokens

The Deck

The deck's game plan is relatively simple. I'll describe the phases of a typical game:

Phase 1

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In Phase 1, you set up shop and fix mana with Expedition MapProphetic Prism, and Azorius Signet. This setup typically takes up Turns 1 through 3. The best draw for this deck includes all three Tron lands by Turn 3, either by having all three drawn naturally or having two of the pieces plus Expedition Map. These hands still need to contain colored mana, however, so you typically also need a Prism, Signet, or Blue-producing land.

This deck can operate without the complete Tron land cycle until Turn 6 or 7. If you can cast most of the spells in your opening hand and draw through your deck to find the missing Tron pieces, don't mulligan into oblivion thinking you have to have 2-3 Tron lands. It's not necessary.

Phase 2

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In Phase 2, you want to interact with your opponent. The easiest way to interact is by blocking with Sea Gate Oracle and Mulldrifter, which help dig through your deck for Phase 3. The next easiest way is to get rid of creatures with spells like Journey to Nowhere and Repeal. Even a temporary answer such as Repeal is useful since once Ulamog's Crusher or Rhystic Circle come down, your opponent's creatures aren't really going to matter. Since so many cards in our deck don't affect the board directly, the card draw from Repeal is pretty important. 

Phase 3

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In Phase 3, you want to achieve Tron by getting at least one each of Urza's Tower, Urza's Power Plant, and Urza's Mine. Afterwards, you're free to go nuts with Ulamog's Crusher, Rhystic Circle, Capsize, or Kaervek's Torch. Although Condescend is an expensive Force Spike with scry early in the game, it shines later in the game when you have twice as much mana as your opponent.

Occasionally Phase 3 (casting Ulamog's Crusher) can end up happening as early as Turn 3 or 4. That's one of the upsides of playing with the Tron lands.

The Sideboard

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Against control decks, especially decks with counterspells, the Dispels and Negates are the most important sideboard cards.

Against aggressive decks, the Sunlances, Circle of Protection: Red, and Circle of Protection: Green come in for your opponent's creatures. Fade Away is a bit of tech I found while scouring Gatherer for good Commons one day. It can read "Target opponent sacrifices six or seven permanents," against Elves or Mono White Tokens. I like having this card to surprise my opponents and win otherwise unwinnable games.

Aura Blast and Divine Offering hedge against decks heavy with these permanent types. Oblivion Ring in the main deck can do the same job, and Gorilla Shaman is much better if you're trying to beat Affinity. The singleton Relic of Progenitus is a nod towards Delve Flashback heavy decks of which there are many sweet lists running about.

Rolling Thunder is often better than Kaervek's Torch when you care more about creatures than counterspells. In some matchups you want both, and occasionally (when your opponent's deck loses to a single Ulamog's Crusher or Rhystic Circle), you want neither.

Due to having four Prophetic Prism in the deck, this deck's sideboard can fairly easily splash for Red, Green, or Black cards when necessary. 

The Matchups

There are plenty of decks that can't win a game once Rhystic Circle resolves and you're ahead on mana with Tron lands. Decks with instant speed damage (e.g. Burn) can be problematic, but those decks often can't beat Ulamog's Crusher. These occasional free wins is a definite part of the power of the WU Rhystic Tron.

Aggro matchups are surprisingly manageable due to playing both efficient blockers and cheap creature removal. However, WU Rhystic Tron often has difficulties keeping up with opposing control decks like Mono Black Control or UB Mystical Teachings variants.

If the sideboard is constantly adjusted to match the metagame, I think WU Rhystic Tron can keep up with the varied Tier 1 decks of the format. Having answers to a variety of threats and access to an early Ulamog's Crusher makes the deck extremely resilient and powerful.

Conclusion

I hope you enjoyed this look into one of my favorite lesser-known decks in the Pauper format. Join me next week when I continue the series with some of the more popular decks in Pauper. Reach out to me in the comments or on the YouTube channel. You can also find me on Twitter @JakeStilesMTG with your thoughts on this week's article and what you want to see next.


More in this Series

Show more ...


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