Tag Archives: Magic: The Gathering

There Can Only Be One Episode 3! Budget Aggro!

Jeremy and I sit down to chat about some sick budget decklists for aggressive highlander decks!

http://mtgcast.com/mtgcast-podcast-shows/active-podcast-shows/there-can-only-be-one/there-can-only-be-one-3-budget-aggro

Please find the deck lists below!

GB Aggro

1 Glissa, the Traitor
1 Inquisition of Kozilek
1 Duress
1 Mind Twist
1 Mesmeric Fiend
1 Brain Maggot
1 Rakshasa Deathdealer
1 Putrid Leech
1 Scavenging Ooze
1 Lifebane Zombie
1 Dreg Mangler
1 Birds of Paradise
1 Garruk Relentless
1 Go for the Throat
1 Golgari Charm
1 Putrefy
1 Troll Ascetic
1 Boon Satyr
1 Grafted Wargear
1 Rancor
1 Overgrown Tomb
1 Woodland Cemetery
1 Evolving Wilds
1 Terramorphic Expanse
1 Pack Rat
1 Pain Seer
1 Bloodsoaked Champion
1 Diregraf Ghoul
1 Hypnotic Specter
1 Tombstalker
1 Hooting Mandrills
1 Herald of Torment
1 Diabolic Edict
1 Hymn to Tourach
1 Reclamation Sage
1 Lotleth Troll
1 Varolz, the Scar-Striped
1 Skullclamp
1 Phyrexian Revoker
1 Gravecrawler
1 Gnarled Scarhide
1 Mogis’s Marauder
1 Caller of the Claw
1 Knight of Infamy
1 Desecration Demon
1 Bloodline Keeper
1 Obstinate Baloth
1 Strangleroot Geist
1 Great Sable Stag
1 Wolfir Avenger
1 Tormented Hero
1 Brushstrider
1 Bonesplitter
1 Dryad Sophisticate
1 Skyshroud Elite
1 Heir of the Wilds
1 River Boa
1 Skylasher
1 Elves of Deep Shadow
1 Rakdos Cackler
1 Overrun
1 City of Brass
1 Night’s Whisper
1 Dark Tutelage
1 Song of the Dryads
1 Dryad Militant
1 Experiment One
1 Kalonian Tusker
1 Vampire Lacerator
1 Skinshifter
1 Gilt-Leaf Palace
1 Llanowar Wastes
1 Temple of Malady
13 Forest
12 Swamp
1 Hero’s Downfall
1 Winter Orb

BR Aggro

1 Lightning Bolt
1 Incinerate
1 Searing Spear
1 Lightning Strike
1 Char
1 Fireblast
1 Arc Trail
1 Blightning
1 Hellrider
1 Hero of Oxid Ridge
1 Terminate
1 Dreadbore
1 Falkenrath Aristocrat
1 Skullclamp
1 Grafted Wargear
1 Rakdos Cackler
1 Diregraf Ghoul
1 Bloodsoaked Champion
1 Gravecrawler
1 Firedrinker Satyr
1 Goblin Guide
1 Ashenmoor Gouger
1 Ashenmoor Liege
1 Pain Seer
1 Blood Scrivener
1 Goblin Rabblemaster
1 Winter Orb
1 Mana Confluence
1 Blood Crypt
1 Dragonskull Summit
1 Blackcleave Cliffs
1 Graven Cairns
1 City of Brass
1 Terramorphic Expanse
1 Evolving Wilds
1 Lavaclaw Reaches
1 Ghitu Encampment
1 Mishra’s Factory
1 Tormented Hero
1 Gnarled Scarhide
1 Herald of Torment
1 Master of the Feast
1 Desecration Demon
1 Mogis’s Marauder
1 Duress
1 Inquisition of Kozilek
1 Magma Jet
1 Spike Jester
1 Hellhole Flailer
1 Lifebane Zombie
1 Hymn to Tourach
1 Price of Progress
1 Burst Lightning
1 Vampire Lacerator
1 Tattermunge Maniac
1 Dynacharge
1 Sword of Feast and Famine
1 Lightning Mauler
1 Stormblood Berserker
1 Hellspark Elemental
1 Hell’s Thunder
1 Sudden Shock
1 Molten Rain
1 Eidolon of the Great Revel
1 Ash Zealot
1 Anathemancer
1 Stromkirk Noble
1 Skullcrack
1 Flames of the Blood Hand
1 Shrine of Burning Rage
1 Pack Rat
1 Stigma Lasher
1 Keldon Marauders
1 Porcelain Legionnaire
1 Zo-Zu the Punisher
1 Magus of the Moon
13 Mountain
10 Swamp
1 Cryptborn Horror

uW Aggro

1 Geist of Saint Traft
1 Stoneforge Mystic
1 Batterskull
1 Sword of Feast and Famine
1 Grafted Wargear
1 Skullclamp
1 Spectral Procession
1 Honor of the Pure
1 Spear of Heliod
1 Mother of Runes
1 Dryad Militant
1 Boros Elite
1 Soldier of the Pantheon
1 Mardu Woe-Reaper
1 Elite Vanguard
1 Knight of Meadowgrain
1 Isamaru, Hound of Konda
1 Boros Reckoner
1 Angel of Jubilation
1 Swords to Plowshares
1 Path to Exile
1 Harm’s Way
1 Elspeth, Knight-Errant
1 Ajani, Caller of the Pride
1 Silverblade Paladin
1 Mirran Crusader
1 Brave the Elements
1 Daring Skyjek
1 Aven Riftwatcher
1 Kor Skyfisher
1 Spirit of the Labyrinth
1 Aegis of the Gods
1 Thalia, Guardian of Thraben
1 Hallowed Fountain
1 Glacial Fortress
1 Evolving Wilds
1 Terramorphic Expanse
1 Seachrome Coast
2 Island
1 Flooded Strand
1 Brimaz, King of Oreskos
1 Imposing Sovereign
1 Judge’s Familiar
1 Eight-and-a-Half-Tails
1 Knight of the Holy Nimbus
1 Knight of the White Orchid
1 Leonin Arbiter
1 Knight of Glory
1 Student of Warfare
1 Figure of Destiny
1 Accorder Paladin
1 Sigiled Paladin
1 Benalish Cavalry
1 Doomed Traveler
1 Elite Inquisitor
1 Mentor of the Meek
1 AEther Vial
1 Grand Abolisher
1 Flickerwisp
1 Sublime Archangel
1 Kataki, War’s Wage
1 Hushwing Gryff
1 Aven Mindcensor
1 Strip Mine
1 Kor Firewalker
1 Leonin Relic-Warder
1 Azorius Arrester
1 Pianna, Nomad Captain
1 Savannah Lions
1 Serra Avenger
1 Council’s Judgment
1 War Priest of Thune
1 Mishra’s Factory
1 Armageddon
25 Plains

-Liam Coughlan

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The Monday Metagame (February 2)

We’re back! This past week had a lot of Highlander played with the year end championships on Sunday and then Monday night Highlander last night! There will a full report from the year end championships published later this week along with all of the deck lists!

As far as Monday of this week there was a slight decline in the number of blue based decks and an increase in the number of aggressive decks. Both creature based decks and more spell based aggressive decks were played to relatively good success. Nelson was even able to take his burn deck (which in fairness was splashing blue for some choice powerful pointed cards) all the way to a 5-0 finish tonight! The speed and efficiency of these decks coupled with the fact that there aren’t very many midrange decks around currently means that these decks can slide past a lot of the tempo and control decks before they are able to set up their mana. Furthermore these aggro decks pressure the combo decks sufficiently to sometimes win before the combo decks can go off.

Speaking of combo decks they were some actual bona fide combo decks this week! While some of these decks were fairly typical such as Trent’s mono green deck and Garret’s Esper Academy deck there was one particularly interesting new deck. Multiple players recently have played around with some reanimation elements in their decks however most of the time the reanimation took a back seat to some other broad strategy. Good examples are things like Esper control featuring Gifts Ungiven as a way to find a reanimation combo quickly or green black decks that use reanimation spells as a way to acquire more value from creatures with ETB effects (Excellent examples of these decks can be found courtesy of Alistair and Alasdair!). This week however Adam Price played a Grixis deck which was much more all in on its reanimation theme. Though this deck possessed control elements however the main game plan involves creating some large threat from the graveyard. This strategy was fairly powerful as many decks either lacked the permission to stop it or were in capable of winning through the reanimated threats.

The last interesting thing from this week is that were literally zero decks which did not contain some number of non basics. Even the mono green combo deck is splashing a few dual lands for activation of lands and Deathrite Shaman. I could well be that non basic hate cards and consistent 1 and 2 colour decks with way of interacting with opponents mana bases might well be at an all time high.

Lastly is the spicy deck of the week! There were a few great candidates for the spicy deck of the week. Jeremy’s Lands deck however takes the award. This deck features several combos with Fastbond and many prison elements to lock the opponent out. At one point this week I saw Jeremy lock a player out by strip mining all of his lands with a Tabernacle of the Pendril Veil in play. The other deck that caught my attention this week was Connor’s 4 colour zoo deck! He’s been playing it for a few weeks and it seems super sweet! I’ll have a deck tech coming out for both these decks in the coming weeks!

As always here is the metagame!

UG Tempo

UB Faeries

Esper Control

Grixis Control

Lands

Bant Midrange

Esper Midrange

Esper Academy Combo

UWR Tempo

Pattern Rector

Mono Green Combo

UR Burn

UR Tempo

4 Colour Academy

BUG Infect

BUG Tempo

4 Colour Zoo

Grixis Reanimator

4 Colour Burn

RUG Aggro

GW Aggro

-Liam Coughlan

Monday Metagame Grixis Time Vault Deck Tech

Here is a new deck tech with special guest Jeremy White!

1 Vedalken Shackles
1 Keranos, God of Storms
1 Spellskite
1 Time Vault (5)
1 Cascade Bluffs
1 Ral Zarek
1 Ponder
1 Imperial Recruiter
1 Trinket Mage
1 Baleful Strix
1 Preordain
1 Grindstone
1 Toxic Deluge
1 Painter’s Servant
1 Dragonskull Summit
1 Drowned Catacomb
1 Voltaic Key
1 Darkslick Shores
1 Notion Thief
1 Arid Mesa
1 Bloodstained Mire
1 Sensei’s Divining Top
1 Duress
1 Badlands
1 Thoughtseize
1 Treasure Cruise
1 Dack Fayden
1 Blood Crypt
1 Venser, Shaper Savant
1 Anger of the Gods
1 Sulfur Falls
1 Damnation
1 Jace, Architect of Thought
1 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
1 Tezzeret the Seeker
1 Ancestral Vision
1 Snapcaster Mage
1 Rough // Tumble
1 Marsh Flats
1 Pestermite
1 Wooded Foothills
1 Vendilion Clique
1 Fact or Fiction
1 Muddle the Mixture
1 Think Twice
1 Brainstorm
1 Electrolyze
1 Counterspell
1 Countersquall
1 Force of Will
1 Cryptic Command
1 Mystical Teachings
1 Miscalculation
1 Forbidden Alchemy
1 Impulse
1 Shred Memory
1 Spell Snare
1 Spell Pierce
1 Negate
1 Dismiss
1 Mana Drain
1 Mana Leak
1 Remand
1 Dig Through Time
1 Inquisition of Kozilek
1 True-Name Nemesis
1 Underground Sea
1 Glen Elendra Archmage
1 Steam Vents
1 Volcanic Island
1 Splinter Twin
1 Demonic Tutor (2)
1 Pyroclasm
1 Gitaxian Probe
1 Flooded Strand
1 Deceiver Exarch
1 Scalding Tarn
1 Watery Grave
1 Condescend
1 Compulsive Research
1 Verdant Catacombs
7 Island
4 Mountain
4 Swamp
1 Misty Rainforest
1 Polluted Delta
1 Sunken Ruins
1 Daze

-Liam Coughlan

The Monday Metagame (January 26th)

We’re back! I didn’t get a chance to play this Monday however I showed up just in time to get the metagame down! We still love blue decks but the rest of the colour pie is starting to fight back.  Decks like Mono White Aggro and BG Rock attempting to be too low to the ground or too redundant to be overcome by the blue decks. After three rounds however the only decks that were still in contention were UB Tempo, Grixis Time Vault, and UG Sorenson.  A noteworthy difference in the this weeks winning deck is that it was entirely focused on winning the game with a combo. Jeremy White piloted his Grixis Time Vault list to a 4-0 record this week and won about a third of his games with Time Vault. Despite this powerful combo’s potency it is not the only win condition in the deck. Jeremy also elected to play the Splinter Twin combo and Painter’s Servant Grindstone Combo in order to increase his density of win conditions. The constant here is the combo element. Since Jeremy was able to win the game on the spot if he resolved key spells he was able to battle through the other blue decks. Conversely the tempo and control decks suffer from needing to protect a threat for some amount of time before winning the game. In a metagame full of people trying to be very interactive this plan can often struggle. It is a decent time to be playing combo decks that also feature control elements as many of the decks in the format now allow the games to progress much longer than the metagame of a few weeks ago. Decks like Jeremy’s Grixis combo deck or even perhaps decks like High Tide might be well suited to the current metagame. There is also still a glaring hole in the metagame for very fast aggressive decks. Decks like Goblins, Slow Burn, and Suicide Black might well be able to punish many of these decks that are looking to many land drops and a establish a few threats.

The other pressing issue to discuss is the recent points changes that occurred. In case anyone was not aware Muddle the Mixture, Crucible of Worlds, and Mishra’s Workshop all went down from 1 to 0 points Grim Tutor was reduced from 2 to 1 and Balance was increased to 1 point. Of these cards only Muddle the Mixture has featured incredibly heavily in decks thus far but it is certainly not  yet concerning.

Lastly we have the Spicy Deck of the week! An honourable mention must go to Serge Yager for his mono Blue Ramp deck though every deck he plays is spicy and I could feature him every week (and might well do so soon). This week the Spicy deck award goes to Jeremy White for his Grixis Time Vault deck which he is 8-0 with thus far! Hopefully we’ll have a deck tech of that deck coming out soon!

Here is the breakdown of the metagame:

Mono White Aggro

UG Sorenson

2 Esper Control

Grixis Time Vault

UB Tempo

UR Control

Bant Midrange

UR Tempo

Grixis Control

BUG Tempo

Academy Combo

UW Tempo

2 Pattern Rector

Eggs

Wildfire

BG Rock

BW Hatebears

RUG Control

RG Aggro

Mono Green Combo

BUG Infect

Big Blue Artifact Ramp

Comments loved as usual!

-Liam Coughlan

Monday Metagame Spicy Deck UB Faeries Deck Tech

Hey everyone! Here is the deck tech for this week! Youtube took a little while to upload so its going up a bit late. Big props to Aaron for this sweet list!

18 Island
3 Swamp
1 Thoughtseize
1 Dismember
1 Glen Elendra Archmage
1 Skullclamp (1)
1 Mind Twist
1 Sai of the Shinobi
1 Bonesplitter
1 Vendilion Clique
1 Inquisition of Kozilek
1 Complicate
1 Jace Beleren
1 Cloud of Faeries
1 Trinket Mage
1 Sol Ring (3)
1 Underground Sea
1 Scalding Tarn
1 Creeping Tar Pit
1 Vault of Whispers
1 Oona’s Prowler
1 Snap
1 Far // Away
1 Faerie Harbinger
1 Oona’s Blackguard
1 Misty Rainforest
1 Arcane Denial
1 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
1 Ponder
1 Watery Grave
1 Undermine
1 Polluted Delta
1 Ninja of the Deep Hours
1 Delver of Secrets
1 Baleful Strix
1 Treasure Cruise
1 Ancestral Vision
1 Faerie Conclave
1 Pestermite
1 Dimir Signet
1 Underground River
1 Cloudseeder
1 Negate
1 Sower of Temptation
1 Venser, Shaper Savant
1 True-Name Nemesis
1 Thada Adel, Acquisitor
1 Sensei’s Divining Top
1 Phyrexian Metamorph
1 Snapcaster Mage
1 Bitterblossom
1 Fact or Fiction
1 Recoil
1 Umezawa’s Jitte (1)
1 Invisible Stalker
1 Thieving Sprite
1 Cryptic Command
1 Counterspell
1 Verdant Catacombs
1 Brainstorm
1 Mana Leak
1 Seat of the Synod
1 Mystical Tutor (1)
1 Sword of Fire and Ice
1 Remand
1 Preordain
1 Pithing Needle
1 Marsh Flats
1 Reflecting Pool
1 Repulse
1 Looter il-Kor
1 Dig Through Time
1 Sakashima’s Student
1 Cyclonic Rift
1 Drowned Catacomb
1 Misdirection
1 Spellstutter Sprite
1 Duress
1 Force of Will
1 Muddle the Mixture (1)
1 Spell Snare
-Liam Coughlan

The Monday Metagame (January 19)

Hello Highlander fans! Welcome back to the Monday Metagame! We had a solid 23 player turnout this past Monday and the metagame has shifted a little bit from last week so there are plenty of interesting things to talk about.

This week practically the whole room decided that it would be a good idea to play blue with over 16 of the 23 decks being fairly deep into what is often argued as the best colour in magic. These decks were varied and all sorts of blue decks were represented. Esper dominated the control variants though there were also a UR control and control combo decks that did quite well. Lastly Jeremy White piloted his UW control deck all the way to the finals. Right now with all of the blue decks in the format finding the best control variant likely revolves around being consistent and not stumbling on mana at all or else you risk dying the tempo decks or falling behind in the control mirrors. There were a few different tempo decks in the room last night though the most successful variants were the ones playing green. Again in a room full of people playing blue decks being able to stick a Tarmogofy or Lorescale Coatl early on then protect it for the rest of the game seems like a very decent place to be. The state of combo currently is about the same as it was last week, most of the combo decks, with the possible exception of academy, are not all in on their combos and instead either look to play to play a tempo or control game to keep their opponent off balance only to then combo kill them. Overall this strategy seems to be paying off for many players.

The non blue decks follow a fairly similar trend to last week though there is a significant lack of true aggressive decks in the format right now as Shane Harwood’s GR aggro deck and Nigel Dufty’s BW hatebears deck. Its probably that the disparity in these decks is what is causing people to be able to play so many blue cards. Many of the control and tempo variants in particularly can struggle against these very low to the ground aggressive decks as they have many relevant cards and they can be very low to the ground.

For the this week’s spicy deck of the week I just so happened to the pick the winner on Monday night! Aaron played his UB tempo list to a 4-0 finish this week defeating Jeremy on UW in the finals. His list has a faerie theme in it. While this might give people who were playing in Lorwyn standard nightmares it is a fairly unknown entity in the highlander community. Aaron was able to gain tempo over his opponent using his black splash and then finish the game with some of the terrifying flying menace often suited up with equipment. This equipment made many of his creatures redundant and allowed him to press his advantage with virtually any creature! He was nice enough to give me his lift so I’ll have a deck tech of that coming out tomorrow hopefully!

One more note! I will likely be out of town for next Monday but Jeremy has been nice enough to volunteer to record the metagame for me so there will still be an article!

Without further ado here is the exact break down of the decks played on Monday:

GR Aggro

BW Pestilence

Monogreen Combo

3 Esper Control

RUG Control

RUG Combo

UG Tempo

UWRG Aggro

Pattern Rector

BUG Tempo

Wildfire Combo

2 UR Control

UR Time Vault

BW Hatebears

Academy Combo

GB Rock

UB Tempo

Esper Academy Control

Junk Value

UW Control

-Liam Coughlan

The Monday Metagame (January 12)

Happy Tuesday Highlanders! My name is Liam Coughlan and I’m starting a new weekly column here on Canadian Highlander called the “The Monday Metagame”. I’m a recently newly elected member of the council and one of my goals is to increase coverage of the format! So with that in mind I’m going to do a weekly overview of the Monday metagame so that those who weren’t present get an idea of what’s going on in the scene and so that those were there and are planning to come the next week can potentially metagame appropriately!

This week was marked by an abundance of fair decks with about 75% of the metagame. The unfair decks can be separated into two different categories, the artifact combo decks (two Academy and one Wildfire), and the mono green Craterhoof combo decks. This week it definitely paid to either be able to interact with creatures decks heavily or be able to go bigger or wider than the other creature decks.

Stefan Bard was one of the players who was able to interact with these creature decks quite well and won all the matches he played against them and finishing 3-0-1 with an unfortunate draw against Wildfire.

The Finals featured two creature decks battling it out as Matt piloted his mono red Goblins past Pat J. playing Pattern Rector. Both these decks are good examples of ways to beat the large number of other creature decks. Goblins are able to both go wide and close out games with burn meaning that goblins often get there despite sometimes being out matched in size. Pattern Rector uses its tool box of creatures and combo elements to either go over the top of other creature decks and ignore their creatures or simply go bigger. Both decks were certainly well situated in a creature based meta game.

The last thing I’d like to talk about is the spiciest deck of the week. I’m going to do this every week and all it really is is a deck that I think is particularly cool or well situated in the metagame. This week the spicy award goes to Adam Price for his Black White Pestilence deck. Adam has been playing this deck for a while but it was particularly well situated this week as playing a deck full of X for one removal in a room full of creatures is definitely great. Adam’s only loss came to Will on Grixis Control I believe and he beat down on all the other match ups he played against. Congrats Adam!

Here’s an exact break down of the decks that were played on Monday!

Jund

BG Rock

2 Esper Control

Grixis Control

UR Control

BW Pestilence

Mono Red Goblins

BR Goblins

Naya Aggro

2 Bant Good Stuff

BW Hatebears

UR Tempo

RUG Tempo

UB Tempo

BUG Tempo

2 Academy Combo

Wildfire

Pattern Rector

3 Mono Green Combo

Thanks a lot guys and tune in next Tuesday for the Monday Metagame! If you have any comments please don’t hesitate to send me a message or comment below!

Liam Coughlan