Hello and welcome back to Rick's Picks!
I've been mentioning white-red is one of the color combinations I have had the most success with in Theros limited. In my last draft article, I even promised a particularly brutal Boros draft would go up soon. Well, this is it! Without further ado, let's take a look at just how crazy things can get for white-red in Greek land.
Of course, not all red-white decks will be as brutal as this one. But what makes me like the archetype so much is that you don't really need to open a Celestial Archon-caliber card to overwhelm opponents. A curve of turn-one Heroic guy (either Akroan Crusader or Favored Hoplite - or maybe even Hopeful Eidolon) into turn two Ordeal of Purphoros is unbeatable in a good number of games, whereas Lightning Strike and Wingsteed Rider are among the very best commons you could hope to get.
The workhorses that help make red-white function so well, however, are the often unsung Heroic enablers. Gods Willing is incredibly cheap and potentially devastating when it means your beater will not only survive a removal spell, but also get a +1/+1 counter to fight another day. The aforementioned Hopeful Eidolon is often unraceable when it's attached to a good heroic creature. Likewise, red has a mini-arsenal of one-mana goodies in Titan's Strength and Dragon Mantle, giving the color a lot of excellent ways to get the most out of Heroic.
One of the things I love about Magic is how it constantly forces us to reevaluate preconceptions as we wander from one format to the next. I guess you could say Theros draft is my education on the wonders of combat tricks, since I tend to historically undervalue such cards. Hopefully, my success with Heroic here further serves the purpose of making me a better player in the long run.
I hope you enjoyed this, and see you next time.