Raise Your Standards – A Marvel-less Standard

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Hello and welcome to another episode of Raise Your Standards.  My original plan for this week was to discuss the announcements that Wizards of the Coast made regarding the changes that are happening to Standard (their new set structure, the return of the core sets, the announcements that were made regarding upcoming releases), however since my article comes out on Friday, it felt like I would only be reiterating the things that other writers on other websites have already said.  And while I’m sure there’s a very small portion of my audience that cares what my opinion is on these things, I think for the majority of you, hearing the thoughts of established pro players has more weight on your own opinion, so I’ll forego that plan and will instead discuss the ban that happened this week and go over some decks that did well recently on MTGO that could be good in this new Marvel-less Standard.

It Finally Happened

In my article last week, I went over the reasons that I felt there would likely be no bans announced this week.  Even though I was wrong about there not being anything banned, I was partially correct in my reasoning.  For those of you living under a rock, the announcement was that Aetherworks Marvel will be banned as of 06/19/17 in Standard.  The reason for the ban was due more to the fact that Aetherworks Marvel basically ignores one of the main limiting factors on a card, its mana cost.  Because of this, it would be difficult to design future cards that have a high power level that is balanced by their having a high mana cost, as those cards could potentially be played as early as turn four by activating Aetherworks Marvel.

“Having 10% of your games end that quickly (by turn four) is justifiably unpalatable to most of you. The best games of Magic are ones that involve counterplay on both sides. For those reasons, we believe Aetherworks Marvel needed to go, even though it is not unbeatable.” — Aaron Forsythe

Aaron Forsythe also went on to go over a few other ideas that were discussed as opposed to having another banning, such as “pair banning”, adding cards such as Duress and Pithing Needle to Standard, restricting cards, or functional errata.  Hearing that other potential solutions were discussed was wonderful to hear as it shows that Wizards of the Coast really understands the cost of banning a card.  By giving us this behind-the-scenes look at their decision making process, it helps give players the sense that our suggestions for possible solutions were heard and reviewed even if they weren’t ultimately found to be the best solution.

He also addressed the “banning fatigue” that has happened recently, which has been a real detriment to anyone playing Standard.  It’s daunting for any player on a budget that wants to win in tournament play to purchase or trade for certain cards, because recent bannings have all happened to cards in the ‘best’ decks.  So, you can either buy/trade for cards needed that may possibly get banned, or you can play a sub-par deck.  Hopefully this will be the last ban for the foreseeable future in Standard so consumer confidence can return.

What’s Next?

So, since this weekend is your last chance to play it, have fun playing your Aetherworks Marvel deck.  Next week, you’ll need a new deck.  Here are a few suggestions.

 

Temur Energy – (by jaytee0913)

PlaneswalkersChandra, Torch of Defiance

Creatures

Spells

Lands

Sideboard

 

If you’re on a budget and had been playing Temur Marvel, here’s a deck for you.  This deck plays many of the same cards that Temur Marvel did, so buying into this deck shouldn’t be too much of a stretch.  It does play quite a bit different than the Marvel deck though, as it’s a lot more interactive with your opponent.

The next deck we’ll take a look at is Red/Black Aggro.

 

R/B Aggro – (by tantska)

CreaturesHazoret the Fervent

Spells

Lands

Sideboard

 

This deck looks to take advantage of discarding cards (by using things such as Hazoret the Fervent, Key to the City, or Ravenous Bloodseeker) in order to gain an advantage in addition to playing cards for their Madness cost.  That makes the deck capable of dealing lots of damage out of the blue that is potentially unblockable.  It’s important to be aggressive, but not too aggressive with this deck, as you will want to hold cards in your hand from time to time in order to deal a fatal blow to your opponent with no warning.

The final deck we’ll take a look at is Black/White Tokens.

 

B/W Tokens – (by hyphon68450)

PlaneswalkersAnointed Procession

Creatures

Spells

Lands

SideboardHidden Stockpile

 

What a fun looking deck!  This deck looks to take advantage of creating tokens to use to help you gain life (Anointer Priest), draw cards (Vampiric Rites), and overwhelm your opponent (or transform Westvale Abbey into Ormendahl, Profane Prince).  If you’re looking for a deck with a lot of synergy that uses cards that your opponent will likely have to read to know what they do (since they’re not the usual staples in Standard), then this is the deck for you.

Conclusion

That’s all I have for you this week.  If you haven’t had a chance yet, I encourage you to head over to the mothership to check out all of the announcements that Wizards of the Coast made this week.  There are a lot of cool looking sets coming out over the next year and I’m looking forward to visiting Ixalan and returning to Dominaria.  I’m feeling optimistic about Standard now that Aetherworks Marvel has been banned.  Hopefully that’s the last ban in Standard for quite a while.  Let me know your thoughts about all of the announcements by either leaving a comment below or emailing me directly at mikelikesmtg@gmail.com.  I plan to pick up Archenemy: Nicol Bolas this weekend and have a little fun playing against my family.  Wish me luck!  Have a good week, and I’ll see you back here next week as we look for innovative decks to play in Standard!

Mike Likes

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Mike Likes

Mike started playing Magic back in 1994, but gave it up at the end of 1995. He came back to the game during the Lorwyn block and has been playing ever since. Around this time, he opened and ran his own comic & game store, while also raising his newborn daughter. After 8 years, he sold his business and moved to Wisconsin with his wife and daughter. With the debut of Kaladesh, his entire family became regular Magic players. He now has hopes of competing alongside his wife and daughter at a Grand Prix or similar event in the future. #MTGDad

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