Back To Basics

Hello everyone! Welcome back to Think Outside The Box!

My goodness it’s been a while! After taking a couple weeks for personal reflection/ a break from magic due to some personal and family issues, finally, it’s good to be back!

During my time away to be honest, I haven’t really thought much about magic. I have stayed on the sidelines regardless, reading content and watching videos etc. In particular, this past weekend was the World Magic Cup. Scotland again reaching day 2! Clad in the Kilt it’s always a pleasure to watch! so wherever you are from in the world, hope it went well!

Now ramblings are done, onto the magic.


Back to basics. During my personal time away it had me thinking back to when I started playing magic. God, I remember turning up to my first FNM with my 90+ card 4c “mill control aggro” deck and winning 0 matches. Back when times were different and magic was different to me anyway. It sort of makes you think. The basic swamp floods back so many memories for me. After I started to take magic more seriously I built a mono black deck, this was Theros standard when Pack Rat was a card. This black deck was a Child Of NightMark Of The VampireSanguine Bond and Gray Merchant Of Asphodel or “Gary” mashup and it was great! Each week I began to tune this deck, trade for other cards and decided to dip my toes into the cold, cold water of competitive magic.

My first competitive deck I built was the Mono B devotion deck and was all I played the whole standard block until rotation came about.

Earlier this week I decided I was going to play in the PTQ online this past Saturday. I had a look on various sited to see what to play and came about the Mono B aggro deck. 16 swamps you say? Sold! I honestly don’t want to talk about the event itself much as I decided to just play Temur as I had not gotten much practice with the Black deck.

Now, the mono B deck:


LANDS – 20

Ifnir Deadlands

16 Swamp



Dread Wanderer

Night Market Lookout

Vicious Conquistador

Gifted Aetherborn

Scrapheap Scrounger

Ruin Raider




Heart Of Kiran

Aethersphere Harvester

Fatal Push

Walk The Plank

Supernatural Stamina




Kitesail Freebooter

Deadeye Tracker

Scavenger Grounds

Walk The Plank

Harsh Scrutiny

Raiders’ Wake

Vraska’s Contempt


There we have it, my Mono B aggro deck. I will discuss some card choices.

Night Market Lookout, 3 Vicious Conquistador

The reason here I find is simple, When crewing with the lookout it has more versatility.

Ruin Raider this is the glue of the deck, card draw attached to a sizeable body is pretty good.

Harsh Scrutiny this card is really good! Vs temur it can take all there annoying blockers and lets you filter the top of your deck, it’s also very good vs mono red to take there Hazoret.

I find Gifts to be one of the harder matchups for this deck. This is why this and a copy of Scavenger Grounds is in the deck.

Raiders’ Wake this is here because…. I like the art? I’m unsure of this 1 slot, Lost Legacy or Dispossess could be a shout here, but I like the wake VS a control deck.

I believe Mono B aggro to be a strong deck and could catch people unaware as it has a very fast start.

Back to basics, back to start fresh, back to playing a basic swamp in multiples and back to enjoy magic again!

As always thanks for reading!

What about you guys then? what did you all play back at the start? Does any cards invoke a memory? Sound off!

Until next time!




Aaron "Ronnie" Brown

Aaron "Ronnie" Brown

Hi! I'm Aaron Brown, more know as "Ronnie". I'm from north Ayrshire in Scotland. I have a 2 year old daughter and a very supportive fiancée. I aspire to play magic for the Scottish national team and to one day play on the Pro Tour.

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