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Theorycrafting Jumpstart


Jumpstart has arrived and there are tons of decks pouring into the meta. Most of them are a bit more aggressive but worry not as I love decks that slow down the game (IN A FAIR WAY). I have to say that with another batch of cards getting added to Historic, I'm starting to hope that life after the pandemic will allow us to see a digital format eventually get the paper treatment because Historic has been so much fun. The only issues I have with the format now is Field of the Dead but outside of that, everything else is amazing! I also hope you all understand that when there's a new set, yours truly has to see if Grixis is Tier I so we've got a nice mixture of aggressive and grindy decks that are using some amount of Jumpstart cards.   

Up first are the Tribal lists I've been noodling with.

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Vampires used to be pretty popular and Jumpstart has brought back a few vampires that might make the tribe popular again. The last time Drana, Liberator of Malakir was in standard, vampires weren't all that popular but I wonder if that changes now that she has a home with the Ixalan vampires. Another card that was brought back was Blood Artist but the iconic vampire hasn't made its way into my lists as I think Cruel Celebrant might be better as it being a 1/2 means it doesn't get picked off by Goblin Chainwhirler and so forth. I could be entirely wrong on this as Blood Artist being able to trigger off of your opponent's creatures might be enough of an upside. 

A tribe that I've always loved is Dragons so naturally, I had to try to cook up a list ...

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The issue with dragons has been that they're just so expensive to cast and Jumpstart just added Dragonlord's Servant and Dragonspeaker Shaman, which combined with Sarkhan, Fireblood reduces the cost of our dragons by quite a significant amount. The format gives us access to some sweet dragons like Bladewing the Risen to reanimate some dragons. Dragon's Hoard is a great way to add mana for now but there is a discussion to replace it with Herald's Horn as they're both about the same card. Do I think dragons are Tier 1? Definitely not as I think we're still missing cards like Thunderbreak Regent and a few Dragonlords but they're definitely fun!

However, there is a tribe that I think is climbing the tiers ...

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Before Jumpstart was spoiled, we all knew that Goblins was just a Goblin Chieftain away from being pretty solid and now that we finally have that exact card, I think goblins could actually make a push for being a legit tier deck. Especially since we got Krenko, Mob Boss which now gives Conspicuous Snoop actual text whereas before, we were just using Snoopy to cast goblins. The card that has caught me by surprise is Muxus, Goblin Grandee. This card usually ends the game when casted. At first I was worried about the mana cost attached to it but with Skirk Prospector, we can cast this quite often. Of course, I still think we shouldn't have more than one to two copies as seeing it early is a terrible feeling.

Onto slightly less tribal decks

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This deck is honestly like a Dimir Tempo deck that has a Mill subtheme as Bruvac, the Grandiloquent serves as a solid body to block with while enabling a ton of our deck like Vantress Gargoyle and Into the Story. It also has a bit of Rogue tribal thrown in as Thieves' Guild Enforcer has been such a fun card. It does a decent impression of Delver of Secrets while combined with Vantress Gargoyle aka Historic's Tarmogoyf. The deck can be a bit of a control deck that can shift gears into an aggro deck as our cheap threats can close out games pretty quickly.  And of course, it can mill opponents out. I think there's something here with this deck but I don't believe my deck is perfect. I still want to see how I can squeeze more card draw in to get more mileage out of Teferi's Tutelage. This deck does feel better in a format like best of one but I'm open to suggestions to make this viable in best of three!

Another deck that is relatively close to the Dimir deck is this Grixis midrange deck

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The deck itself tries to play a lot like a Jund deck by playing powerful cards and if I'm going to call Vantress Gargoyle the Tarmogoyf of Historic, then I may as well double down on it and throw it into this deck! If this isn't the biggest Grixis Pile O' Cards, I don't know what is! It really benefited from getting Gonti, Lord of Luxury as Gonti is another rogue that can peel cards off the top of our opponent's library. 

Another deck that I've been waiting to play is some kind of discard deck. This is the rough version but it's a little bit more creature heavy!

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Tinybones, Trinket Thief is now our endgame for when our opponent's run out of cards as this deck often struggled with things to do after our opponents are out of cards. Speaking of our opponent's being out of cards, we plan on using Phyrexian Obliterator to win games, while also holding up mana to activate Tinybones. The discard deck does feel better in a best of three format as this can allow us to properly sideboard to take out aggro decks.

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If Mono black isn't spicy enough, and you want to step away from the devotion gameplan and play a little more of Rakdos Disco-Burn! It doesn't pack the devotion or obliterator plan but we get to add red for powerhouses like Kroxa, Titan of Death's Hunger which will serve as a way to discard and burn our opponents out. We also get the nice team up of Tinybones, Trinket Thief and Angrath, the Flame-Chained to really spice things up and burn opponents out while still enabling our discard plan. Angrath might be right at home here as he also allows us to have psuedo removal with his -3 so consider me a fan of fire and steel! Another addition we get with red is Carnival // Carnage which can pick off problematic creatures with one toughness while scaling up later in the mid game as a way to discard and have reach. I'm not sure what the sideboard looks like yet as nothing is set in stone. However, we might need to add something into the sideboard to help us beat Gruul and goblins. Maybe Phyrexian Obliterator or some other solid threat as those two decks are tough. Specifically Goblins because a Muxus kills us more often than not.

If you've been watching my streams or seen what I've been climbing the ladder with in Standard, you know I love me some Esper Bolas and this is my take on a Historic version...

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With how aggressive the decks can be in historic, the deck having access to Languish is big as now we can be boardwipe.deck. Since we're shifting formats, this now gives us access to Teferi, Hero of Dominaria and Oath of Teferi. With how much Mono blue tempo is in the format, I think we need cards like Fry and Chandra, Awakened Inferno. Thanks to the bigger card pool, the deck's power level goes through the roof in this format. The issue I'm concerned with is can we survive the early aggression so I've loaded the deck up with sweepers and a bit more to deal with aggro. We do need to be ready to fight Field of the Dead so maybe we should be playing Fall of the Thran or some more ways to keep the zombie hoards at bay. Right now, I've got a few copies of Virulent Plague and Necromentia to hopefully pick off Field of the Dead early. 

Conclusion

Historic continues to go from rags to riches as the format is getting more support and an even better card pool than any of us could've imagined. Not only will we get to play with Jumpstart, we've got Amonkhet Remastered coming and Pioneer Masters so we can only hope for the Dragons of Tarkir commands to be added. I still think cards like Thought Scour should've been added but for the most part, Jumpstart has definitely made an impact and I can't wait to see how the meta shapes up. If you've got sweet historic brews, I'd love to see them in the comments or reach out to me on Twitter or Email. Thanks for reading and have fun brewing!

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-Your Friendly Neighborhood AsianAvenger

Twitter: @TheAsianAvenger || Twitch: twitch.tv/TheAsianAvenger || Email: theasianavenger@mtggoldfish.com


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