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The Fish Tank: Sweet and Spicy User-Submitted Decks (Dec. 15-21, 2019)

Welcome back to The Fish Tank, the series where we peek at sweet viewer-submitted decks and maybe, with our powers combined, turn them into real, fun, playable lists! This week we've got a ton of Pioneer and a touch of Modern as well. Oh yeah, and to have your own deck considered for next week's edition (and for our Fishbowl Thursday Instant Deck Tech), make sure to leave a link in the comments or email them to me at


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While we looked at a Pioneer Dubious Challenge deck a while ago, thanks to the banning of Oko, Thief of Crowns, it's worth showing off another build of the deck, this time from Moudou. The deck's goal is simple: ramp into Dubious Challenge and hopefully hit a big Eldrazi or Worldspine Wurm along with something like Trostani Discordant or Charming Prince to guarantee we end up with the big finisher. In the past, the plan's problem was that Oko, Thief of Crowns turns cards like Emrakul, the Promised End, Worldspine Wurm, and Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger into relatively harmless 3/3 Elk. Now that Oko is (finally) banned, the time seems right to try Dubious Challenge in the format, and Moudou's build looks like a solid starting point.

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Thousand-Year Storm is a super-fun card to build around, but so far, it hasn't really seen any play in Pioneer. Cr1ms0nw0lf looks to change this! The deck's goal is to get Thousand-Year Storm on the battlefield, and then things get pretty crazy, with Rosethorn Acolyte and Pirate's Pillage acting like super-rituals to allow us to draw through our entire deck with Growth Spiral, Radical Idea, and friends. Eventually, we use Fae of Wishes to tutor essentially our entire sideboard into our hand and win the game by making about a million hasty Revel of the Fallen God tokens! The main problem with Thousand-Year Storm, especially in Pioneer, is that it's slow, and if we don't get our namesake card on the battlefield (for example, if our opponent can counter it), our deck doesn't do much of anything. Saheeli, Sublime Artificer offers a bit of a backup plan, although just how often it is enough to win the game remains to be seen. Still, the deck looks like a blast to play, and when everything comes together, it should offer some of the most spectacular turns in the Pioneer format!

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Zada, Hedron Grinder is a classic build-around (and one of the cards I get the most questions about). -Arcanity- looks to make the combo-centric Goblin work in Pioneer, and rather than me discussing the deck, I'll let Arcanity do it since along with the submission came a link to a 3,000-word primer about the brew!

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Deathless Knight is not a card I expected to find in Pioneer, let alone as the driving force of a combo deck, but Tchitcherine defies expectations with his Deathless Knight Combo brew. The idea is to use Lotleth Troll to discard Deathless Knight and trigger Faith of the Devoted to drain our opponent for two (and gain two life) and return Deathless Knight to our hand. This slowly grows our Lotleth Troll while also enabling cards like Hollow One and Archfiend of Ifnir that care about cards being discarded. While the combo itself is unique, the rest of the deck is basically a graveyard-heavy Golgari Midrange build, with some delirium synergies thrown in for good measure. Is the Deathless Knight plan better than a more traditional Golgari Delirium strategy? I have no idea, but it is spicier for sure!


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Rats are one of the most underappreciated tribes in Modern, although Beartrax looks to change this with his build. The deck's main goal is to eat away the opponent's hand with discard-based Rats and then finish the game with a huge Pack Rat or two, along with Nezumi Shortfang as a Rat-based version of The Rack. While the deck looks a bit light in the power department, if we can empty our opponent's hand quickly enough, a board full of 1/1s should eventually be able to finish off the opponent!


Anyway, that's all for this week. As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, opinions, and suggestions in the comments, and if you have some ideas on how to improve or use these decks, leave those as well. If you'd like your own deck considered for a future edition of The Fish Tank (or the Fishbowl Thursday Instant Deck Tech), leave a link in the comments, or you can email me at Thanks to everyone who submitted decks this week. Keep the spicy jank coming!

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