Hello everyone and welcome back to Limited Concepts your weekly look into the world of Limited MTG where we will break down what it takes to 3-0 your next draft or take down your next pre-release. Last week we dove into the enemy color pair archetypes in Dominaria and took a look at some of the gold uncommon cards and some of the bombs that might draw you towards a certain color. This week we will be taking a look at the allied color pairs and some of the cards that fall into those archetypes.
This is a color pair famously associated with flyers and tends to be a good deck in whatever Limited format you are playing. Dominaria brings us some great flyers such as Cloudreader Sphinx and Academy Drake. Cloudreader Sphinx is not only a great flying body but also allows you to filter your draw which by the time you are casting him will be something on your mind. Whether you need just another land to cast that powerful Kicker card in your hand or you are looking to mitigate flood and draw some action, Scry 2 is a big game in Limited and can really help you tun the corner in these grindy Dominaria Matches.
There is a sub theme here in Dominaria with historic spells, though there aren’t too many payoffs so don’t worry too much about trying to jam your deck full of artifacts. The gold uncommon Raff Capashen, Ship’s Mage allows you to cast historic spells as though they had flash which can be pretty powerful with sagas if you cast them on upkeep allowing you to trigger them twice in one turn. Cards like Teshar, Ancestor’s Apostle would make me more likely to want to play a couple extra historic spells especially alongside cards like Daring Archaeologist but don’t think you need to play sub par cards just because you have 2 Serra Disciples.
In blue you also have access to a couple of powerful enchantments like Arcane Flight to throw your Evra, Halcyon Witness to the skies and win the game. Not to mention my personal favorite In Bolas’s Clutches that can quickly turn the tides in a game you were losing or slam the door or an opponent when you were winning.
Playing this archetype gives you access to the most Kicker cards in the set and with efficient cards like Shivan Fire and more powerful ones like Fight with Fire you may find yourself in these colors. The gold uncommon here is Hallar, The FireFletcher who looks to gain you extra value from casting your spells Kicked and on its own as a 3/3 body is pretty decent in this format.
Kicker is a great mechanic that turns your cards into modal spells allowing you more options through out your games. You can play your Untamed Kavu if you need to block or want to start being aggressive but you can also wait to play it Kicked as a 5/5 especially if you have another possible play for the turn. Kicker adds some depth to the game where you sometimes have to make decisions about whether or not you should wait to play a card Kicked. I would say more often than not it is worth it to wait to cast your spells Kicked but giving you that modality is what makes the mechanic so strong allowing you to change your game plan as needed.
Territorial Allosaurus is a great example of a very powerful Kicker card that starts off as a 4 mana 5/5 which is already pretty great and then tack on the fact that for a little more mana you get a Pounce out of the card if you want and can help turn around a game where you may have been flooding out.
Dominaria is a great home for durdle decks and what better combination to durdle in than U/B? With the format being much slower than we have been used to lately Control has truly resurfaced in Limited and the support is there for the archetype. Cards like Vicious Offering, Blink of an Eye, and Eviscerate can keep your life total high by stopping your opponent’s creatures until you have exhausted their resources and can win through whatever means you may have. My personal favorite is suiting up Cold-Water Snapper with Arcane Flight and attacking with a Flying Hexproof turtle but that’s just me.
Caligo Skin-Witch is another card that gets a lot better in this archetype where sometimes you need a 1/3 to block and preserve your life total and other times you get to Mind Rot your opponent while adding to the board all with just one card.
Divination and Dark Bargain are great to keep up on card advantage with your opponent which is a key component of this archetype since you are often trading one for one and a big card draw will usually spell the end for your opponent.
Speaking of card advantage that is the name of the game for the gold uncommon Rona, Disciple of Gix who can absolutely take over the late game allowing you the ability to basically draw an extra card every turn.
Snycopate is also back in the format and is very maindeckable where in most Limited formats you may not play counterspells at all. Being able to counter something on curve on the draw is very impactful and especially in this format where you are often tapping out to cast expensive spells.
The main theme here is a Sacrifice/Reanimation deck that has the possibility to do some very powerful things. Your gold card is Garna, The Bloodflame which can allow you to sacrifice your permanents to some sac outlet and then play Garna to return those creatures to your hand. Being a 5 mana 3/3 is pretty bad and flash doesn’t make up for that. Looking at the ability at the very least you can set up a situation where you basically draw 1 card off of her if you play Garna after losing a creature in combat though what you really want to be doing is getting multiple creatures back with her ETB effect. The final clause can be very important in a lot of games where your opponent may have a decent number of bounce effects and is looking to out tempo you.
Whisper, Blood Liturgist is one of the sac outlets I was talking about earlier and can allow you to do some pretty broken things like use Final Parting to put Darigaaz Reincarnated into your graveyard then sac a couple creatures and cheat him into play. One of the best parts about Whisper’s ability is that it doesn’t say other creatures allowing you to sacrifice Whisper to it’s own ability.
In red you have Siege-Gang Commander to help give you fodder for your sacrifice engines and provides another engine itself. Squee, the Immortal can be repeatedly sacrificed and recast to burn out your opponent or draw a bunch of cards. I would love to cast a Kicked Keldon Overseer to steal their creature and attack then sacrifice it to Whisper.
It seems you can have a more aggressive version of this deck or a more controlling version but either way I would be looking at this color pair if I had cards like Whisper, Blood Liturgist, Siege-Gang Commander, and Rite of Belzenlok.
Here we have your typical go wide aggressive deck but in Dominaria the archetype is given some pretty powerful cards to work with. The gold uncommon is Shanna, Sisay’s Legacy and she rewards you for going wide and allows you to attack from another angle by just being an enormous creature on her own. Her first ability is also pretty decent and may come up more often than you think such as in situations where your opponent has an Icy Manipulator and can’t tap her down or they cast a Kicked Territorial Allosaurus and can’t fight it before it gets too big.
Song of Freyalise is a very powerful card in this color combination that can help you play out your hand and then lay a major beatdown on your opponent.
Shalai, Voice of Plenty can give all your creatures Hexproof and start to make your creatures bigger putting the game out of your opponent’s reach.
Well I hope you enjoyed this dive into the Limited archetypes of Dominaria and that it will help you to build a better deck by properly evaluating what cards fit into which archetypes. This format has proven to be a challenging one and in the coming weeks we will tackle some more specifics about this format in hopes to increase your win percentage. If you want to leave a comment please do so below otherwise you can find me on Twitter/Instagram/Twitch as @aGangofHippies to stay up to date with all my content and to say Hi.