It’s Tuesday O’Clock! Time for a Deck Tech!
If you want to see a stream of this deck be sure to check out https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2LJ6t6okp2g!
Recently I was listening to the podcast So Many Insane Plays, a podcast dedicated to discussing Vintage, the most powerful format of Magic the Gathering. In the episode I was listening to, they were talking about the effect Dominaria would have on the Vintage format. It was fascinating to learn about cards that may seem worthless in any other format, have a home in the deadliest decks of Magic.
At 2:25:15 in the Dominaria podcast they start talking about a card that I wasn’t expecting to hear, and frankly barely knew existed. And that card was Jhoira’s Familiar. This simple uncommon from Dominaria, delegated to the draft chaff piles was being seriously discussed for the Vintage format. After arguing it for a bit, both members of the podcast agreed that Jhoira’s familiar could be a powerful inclusion in the Ravager Shops deck.
Ravager Shops for those who are unaware is an artifact deck that looks to power out as many powerful artifacts as possible in as short of time as possible. And it does this through the effect of cards such as Foundry Inspector. With fast mana, and cost reducers it can often dump its entire hand as early as turn 1. Ravager Shops is one of the most powerful decks in Magic, and the fact that it was considering a card like Jhoira’s Familiar made me reevaluate the card.
After listening to this podcast, I realized something. Both Jhoira’s Familiar and Foundry Inspector are currently simultaneously legal in Standard. I immediately set to brewing! This is the list that I came up with after doing a good amount of testing.
Brewing this deck proved to be quite a challenge. Due to the nature of Standard having much more fair cards, I was unable to produce a truly broken deck along the lines of Vintage shops. I also wanted to keep the deck underneath the price threshold of 50 bucks, forgoing the inclusions of Karn and Walking Ballista despite how great they would be in this deck. I still succeded at my goal, however, and produced a really synergistic and fun deck for only 40 bucks. (And less than 5 tix!)
The core of this deck is the powerful effect of cost reduction granted by Jhoira’s Familiar, and Foundry Inspector. If this deck is able to play 2-3 of these cost reduction spells, it can often have very explosive turns where you play everything in your hand for free, draw several cards, and also play those spells for free. Everything in this deck is designed around this cost reduction, and when it comes online it can decimate the opponent.
One of the hallmarks of the Vintage Shops deck is its ability to produce a lot of mana in a single turn. The inclusion of Powerstone Shard facilitates this purpose for us, allowing the deck to drop these on the cheap with the help of Foundry Inspector/Jhoira’s Familiar, and then tap them to net even more mana than you spent to cast it. This card gives the deck very explosive turns and gives us the ability to cast Metalwork Colossus for hardly anything. With this much mana floating around in our pool, we have to have a use for it. This is where Mishra’s Self-Replicator comes in. This card, if not answered immediately, can spiral the game out of control for your opponent. Casting an artifact for free using the aforementioned cards allows us to use all of our open mana to create a self-replicating army. After assembling a huge board of constructs, the next step is to kill our opponent. By splashing just a little outside of brown we can utilize the power of The Antiquities War. This allows us to set up a scenario in which we swing in with, oh, a dozen 5/5’s. Not too shabby if I do say so myself.
Another thing that I love about this deck is it has the ability to grind like none other. Merchant’s Dockhand, the Weatherlight, and Key to the City allow us to draw multiple cards a turn, rivaling even the durdliest of control decks. We can then cast all of these cards for basically free, thanks to the marquee cards of the deck.
And with the release of M19 on the horizon, this deck could receive some serious upgrades in a very short time. Cards such as Sai, Master Thopterist are just begging to be included in this deck. If you would like to see this deck in action, be sure to check out https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2LJ6t6okp2g. Thank you for reading, have a great week and an amazing Tuesday!