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The Fish Tank: Sweet and Spicy User-Submitted Decks (Nov. 24-30, 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 have lists that run the gauntlet from Standard to Pioneer to Modern, with a bunch of spicy combos, so let's get to the lists! 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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Thousand-Year Storm is one of the most unique archetypes in Standard, and thanks to Throne of Eldraine, the deck has a ton of new options in the form of adventure creatures, which can not only storm off themselves with Lucky Clover but also allow the deck to play a bunch of creatures while still keeping the spell count high enough for Thousand-Year Storm to work. The deck's main goal is to use Rosethorn Acolyte and Beanstalk Giant in conjunction with Lucky Clover from ramp to get Thousand-Year Storm on the battlefield; then, we can tutor from our sideboard with Fae of Wishes before killing our opponent by copying something like Bonecrusher Giant, Ral's Outburst, or Expansion // Explosion a bunch of times with Thousand-Year Storm! The deck's biggest drawback is that it can be slow, and if our opponent can immediately answer Thousand-Year Storm with a counter or removal, we can end up doing a lot of work for nothing. On the other hand, when the plan comes together, it can lead to some of the craziest, most explosive turns possible in Standard!


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Indomitable Creativity is undoubtedly a powerful card, but building around it comes with a pretty high cost since you can only play a handful of very specific creatures (to find with Indomitable Creativity) and need non-creature ways to put artifacts or creatures on the battlefield to power up Indomitable Creativity. Davin P. approaches this plan with Treasure tokens. The deck's main goal is to use cards like Depths of Desire, Hornswoggle, Pirate's Pillage, and friends to build up a board full of Treasures and then use Indomitable Creativity to get multiple copies of the deck's only creature: Marionette Master. Even with just a couple of Marionette Masters, if we choose to fabricate them to four power, it should only take two or three Treasures being sacrificed to drain our opponent out of the game on the spot! The plan's downside is that most of the Treasure-producing cards are about one more mana than the norm, although having a bunch of cheap removal like Fatal Push, Battle at the Bridge, and Unlicensed Disintegration helps to make sure we stay alive long enough to execute our plan. Oh yeah, and the deck is essentially a budget deck (just above our normal $100 budget range), which explains some slightly underpowered choices like Evolving Wilds

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We tend to look at a lot of crazy combo decks in The Fish Tank, so it's time to show all of our aggro-playing friends some love with a Pioneer build of Cavalcade. While it might seem strange to think of Cavalcade of Calamity as Pioneer playable, the deck does have a lot of sweet options, with a ton of good one-drops and Throne of the God-Pharaoh as an additional way to double up our damage. Plus, we have four copies of Smuggler's Copter, which tends to be the secret to making any janky creature-based aggro deck at least somewhat playable. If you're a Standard Cavalcade player and want to give Pioneer a shot, BlueSteel's build looks like a good starting point, at the very least.

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Dubious Challenge—despite a name that suggests it might not be worth the effort—it a popular build-around, and now thanks to Pioneer, we've got an entirely new format to try to make it work! The deck's plan is simple: we ramp into Dubious Challenge with Elvish Mystic, Llanowar Elves, and Gilded Goose, and when we cast Dubious Challenge, we hope to find a finisher (either Zetalpa, Primal Dawn or Emrakul, the Promised End) and an enabler (either Trostani Discordant or Charming Prince) to make sure that we end up with the finisher no matter what our opponent chooses. The good news for Pioneer Dubious Challenge is that all of the pieces are there to make it work—our Dubious Challenges themselves should be pretty consistent. The bad news is that the finishers in Pioneer are a bit worse than in Modern, where there are one-hit-kill options like Emrakul, the Aeons Torn or creatures that can lock a deck out of the game like Iona, Shield of Emeria. That said, a Turn 3 Zetalpa, Primal Dawn or Emrakul, the Promised End is still pretty scary, and Worldspine Wurm should probably be in consideration as well, as the biggest, baddest top-end threat in the Pioneer format.


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Zombie Hunt is an infamous budget-friendly jank deck in Modern that now has a second life in Historic thanks to Treasure Hunt entering the format. While I've seen similar decks with Jace, Wielder of Mysteries as the finisher, this build goes with a true Zombie token finish in Awaken the Erstwhile. The deck's plan is to play Reliquary Tower and then use Treasure Hunt (perhaps with the help of Mystic Sanctuary to get it back from the graveyard) to draw our entire deck for a low price. Then, once we have a massive hand full of cards, we cast Awaken the Erstwhile to not only clear out our opponent's hand but also to make an overwhelming board full of Zombies to win the game! While the deck is likely more of a meme than a truly competitive option (although it should be pretty consistent at winning around Turn 6), one of the upsides is that it's super cheap, with this build needing only eight rares on Magic Arena, and four being Watery Grave, which you (hopefully) will have in your collection from Standard. It's worth keeping in mind if you want a cheap Historic deck that can jank out opponents in a really unique way!


Anyway, that's all for today. Thanks to everyone who sent in decks this week, and if you'd like your own deck considered for a future Fish Tank (or the Fishbowl Thursday Instant Deck Tech) make sure to leave a link in the comments, or you can email me at As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, opinions, and suggestions, and if you've got some ideas on how to make this week's batch of Fish Tank decks even better, make sure to leave those as well!


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