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By: Arctic_Ghost, Arctic_Ghost
Jun 07 2017 11:00am
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We all know what this archetype is. You take enchantments such as Armadillo Cloak and Ancestral Mask, you then attach them to a creature with the Hexproof ability (Slippery Bogle for example) and then you attack to your hearts content.

 

One big problem this archetype has always faced are cards such as Chainer's Edict and Diabolic Edict. The way you would counter these cards are with creatures like Young Wolf and token generating cards to protect against such spells. But now you get a new card from Amonkhet in the form of Cartouche of Solidarity. Not only does it give your creature a power/toughness bonus, but it also gives First Strike and it gives you a token to do with what you want to.

 

I have also taken some pointers from many different lists and especially from Michelle Wong, who is one of the best pilots of this archetype that I have seen. I have added Manamorphos and some red cards to the sideboard to try and help out some of the popular matchups you may run into (such as Snow Delver and decks run Circle of Protection: Green) and to help you fight the midgame. I'll stop rambling on and break the deck down piece by piece.

 

 

The Creatures

Slippery Bogle and Gladecover Scout – These are your 1 mana cost Hexproof creatures. I've gotten flooded many times with drawing too many of them and so I decided to go down to only 7 and so far it's been very good.

 

Silhana Ledgewalker – Your 2 mana cost Hexproof creature. Silhana Ledgewalker can also be better because she can only be blocked by flying creatures, making it easy to get in more damage, but the 2 mana cost can make a big difference when trying to play multiple spells in 1 turn.

 

Heliod's Pilgrim – I personally love this creature because it gives this deck a source of card advantage. I can't tell you how many games I have won because I was able to tutor for the right Aura that I need. I might add a third copy if I can find room.

 

Aura Gnarlid – I am not a huge fan of this creature because it does not have Hexproof and it is easily dealt with in today's Pauper meta. One big strength of this archetype is that it turns a lot of your opponents deck off by making their removal spells useless and although it can steal games here and there, I think it would be better as something else.

 

The Spells

Rancor – Good old Rancor. This is one of the best Aura's you have because for only 1 green mana, you get to give your creature an extra 2 power, they gain Trample and if your creature does end up dying, the Rancor will return to your hand. Do remember that the Rancor must go to the graveyard from the battlefield so that it returns from your hand. If your creature dies in response to it being cast, the Rancor will go to the graveyard and never resolve.

 

Ethereal Armor – This is what I think is the best Aura in this archetype because it costs only 1 mana, gives your creature First Strike so that it fights better in combat and it gives your creature a big bonus for each enchantment you control and that can help end the game extremely quickly.

 

Cartouche of Solidarity – This is the new tool that this deck has gotten from the new set. Not only does it give a small power and toughness bonus, but it also gives First Strike, which is always good for combat. The best part however, is that it gives you a token to work with as well, not only giving you a creature to block with or attach more Aura's too, but also protecting you from cards such as Chainer's Edict and that will definitely help you win in the long run.

 

Armadillo Cloak – This is your way of outracing the aggro strategies of the format because it gives you creature the ability of, “Whenever this creature deals damage, you gain that much life” and because this is not the actual ability Lifelink, if you put 2 copies of this on the same creature, you gain double the amount of life instead.

 

Ancestral Mask – This is without a doubt the scariest Aura that you have because it gives +2 power for each other enchantment you have in play and when you consider the fact that you will most likely have 3 or more enchantments in play at any given time, you can imagine how much damage you can deal with 1 copy of this card alone. This is the way you end the game fast and it does the job well.

 

Utopia Sprawl and Abundant Growth – These are here to help you fix your mana. Utopia Sprawl helps you ramp by allowing the Forest you attach it to produce 2 mana instead of only 1 and the Abundant Growth not only replaces itself, but also gives the land you attach it to produce any color you need it to. They also stay in play and help your Ancestral Mask and Ethereal Armor get bonuses.

 

Manamorphos – This is one of the new tools I am trying out because a lot of others are as well. It allows you to draw a card deeper for free, while also fixing your mana and allowing you to play cards in your sideboard from other colors, so that you can prepare for anything. So far I have been very pleased with this card in my deck.

 

The manabase is very straightforward and there really isn't very much to touch on. The reason you play Blossoming Sands over Selesnya Sanctuary because you are going to attach enchantments to your lands and won't want to return them to your hand and you also need a dual land to produce white. I want a second copy of Khalni Garden because I like the token it gives you when it comes into play, but the fact that it enters tapped makes it difficult to adjust and find room. The rest of the manabase is pretty much what it is.

 

The Sideboard

3 Standard Bearer – This is mostly used for the mirror and against Stompy, but it can also be good against Burn so you can, in a way, counter a burn spell.

 

2 Moment's Peace – This is against aggro decks so you can buy a turn or 2, then set up and win the game. I am not sure it's a great plan, so far I am not a big fan of it.

 

2 Lifelink – This is also for aggro matchups, I have seen people main deck 1 copy and I am slowly starting to like that. This spell on its own isn't very good and so game 1 you don't need it, you just want to use your most powerful spells to lock up the game.

 

2 Young Wolf – This creature also helps further against Edict effects, but it can also be just a good creature because it takes 2 removal spells to finally deal with it.

 

2 DispelSerene Heart is a popular sideboard card against this deck and this is your answer for it. However after further testing and looking more into the format, I don't think you need this card because a lot of decks are using Gleeful Sabotage (it is a sorcery so you can't beat it with dispel), Standard Bearer (a creature that dispel does nothing against) and Natural State which dispel is just not great against, you'd rather have more threats in enchantment form. I will be taking this out of my sideboard for more powerful cards like Pyroblast to further fight blue decks.

 

2 Flaring PainCircle of Protection: Green and Fog effects have become more popular as of late and this helps win against those effects.

 

2 Electrickery – This allows you to play a slower game and set up easier against token strategies, Elves and Delver Blue. This card can also be useful at killing opposing Standard Bearer, but if that is all you are worried about, I would suggest Gut Shot instead.

 

The Videos

 

 

 

Conclusion and Verdict

The archetype is still as powerful as it always has been. I think the deck is also well positioned and I really love the addition of Manamorphose and will definitely be experimenting with sideboard card options to see what fits. Even against heavy Edict decks or true hardcore control decks, I feel well positioned and just need to sequence my spells correctly to win the game.

 

Would I recommend this deck? I absolutely would recommend this deck and suggest you pick it up. You may get hated on by sideboard cards or may run into a little bit of bad luck, but so long as your sideboard is planned for what you are going to face and if you can fight through the variance, I see no reason you will have trouble doing well in pauper events. Let me know what your build looks like and what changes you would make.

 

Would you like to compete in a free Pauper tournament with some great prizes? Head on over to Gatherling.com on Tuesday nights at 8pm EDT and play in our weekly Pauper Classic Tuesday's event! Join the chat #PCT to chat with us and feel free to find most of the competitors on Discord!

 

Thanks for reading and watching. See you guys next time!