Arctic_Ghost's picture
By: Arctic_Ghost, Arctic_Ghost
Dec 08 2022 11:19am

We all remember Blue Tron right? The deck that put a smile on everyone’s face and taught us that with 3 lands in play, you could get 7 mana to use at your disposal. Tron created an era in Pauper where it was truly a time to be alive and playing Pauper.

However, over time, players loved Blue Tron so much that just about everyone asked for it to die so that Pauper players would be forced to play something else because we were all so warped by the archetypes beauty. Wizards tried by banning Expedition Map, but that did nothing.

It was only when Prophetic Prism and Bonder’s Ornament went down for the dirt nap did we truly realize how much we missed counting to 7. Wizards heard our pleads and tried their best by giving us back our Map to help us find the glory we were looking for, but alas, it was not enough.

With the release of Brothers’ War however, we may have found the diamond in the rough we have all been looking for! I am sure everyone wants to read about Tron! If you are not one of those people, tough noodles, because I want to talk about it!

The list we will be looking at today got third place in the challenge that took place on 11/19/2022 and was piloted by the player RClint21. Alright ladies and gentlemen it is time! Let’s rock!

Mulldrifter – At this point Mulldrifter should be considered an official mascot of the Tron archetype. In a Flicker style like this, you always want 4 copies.

Mnemonic Wall – A big part of how you actually win in the late game and your combo with Ghostly Flicker.

Stonehorn Dignitary – This is how you tell your aggro opponent in a polite way that they don’t need to attack to win the game.

Dinrova Horror – Here is your main way of winning with this build and it does the job very well. I like seeing only 1 copy as you will only ever need 1 to win the game.

Crop Rotation – The whole point of an Urza Tron archetype is to get Urza Tron in play. This is one of the best ways to do that. It can also get you land like Bojuka Bog at instant speed or a land that produces color.

Moment’s Peace – A way to buy extra turns against aggro decks that can be fetched with Mystical Teachings. Always a staple of the archetype.

Weather the Storm – No one likes losing to burn decks.

Pulse of Murasa – A good way to fight into the late game. It also gains 6 life which is quite good against any burn based deck.

Breath Weapon – A great board wipe against any deck. Just be careful and remember this hits your own creatures as well.

Impulse – This is a fantastic card for Tron as it digs 4 cards deep at instant speed. Seeing 4 cards is quite amazing when trying to find the right answer or last Tron piece you need.

Compulsive Research – This is a fairly good draw spell for the mana. You can also win the game with this and the Flicker combo, but it takes a ton of clicks as well as a ton of time to pull off.

Behold the Multiverse – A good instant speed draw spell that you can cast for 2 mana later on in the game. The best part of Foretell is that you can set the card aside and it can’t be hit by a Duress type of effect.

Mystical Teachings – We all know this card by now. It is a way to generate a ton of card advantage and it does a damn good job at it.

Prohibit – You can’t cast Counterspell easily and you do want a tiny bit of counter magic to be proactive. Especially since you have Teachings in your deck to go fetch it.

Unwind – A form of Negate that untaps your lands so you can do a ton more stuff. I like it as a 1 of.

Ghostly Flicker and Ephemerate – Here are your combo cards. I like 1 copy of each as you don’t want to draw them super early, nor do you want so many copies of them early either.

Expedition Map – Helps get Tron or a land you need. Enough said.

Energy Refractor – Here is what is hopefully the saving grace for Tron and does do a decent job. However, there is a small issue, it is not an actual reprint of Prophetic Prism. What this does is gives you the option to filter 2 mana and make a mana of any color. This means you are always losing a mana. The trade off is you can use it multiple times. I can say personally, the filtering part does through me off, so be careful when using your mana so you do not miss count.

Network Terminal – It is not a great replacement for Bonder’s Ornament but it does do a decent job. I like having 2 copies of this card in the deck.

The Manabase

Urza’s Tower, Urza’s Power Plant and Urza’s Mine – Playing 4 of each of these along with the 2 Islands in the deck are standard of the blue Tron archetype.

Bojuka Bog and Remote Isle – Great utility lands that are fairly standard of the archetype.

Sea Gate and Thriving Isle – Here are your dual lands of the deck.

Crystal Grotto – This is the land Tron in Pauper has been waiting for. A filter land that gives you a quick Scry. Thank you Wizards.

The Sideboard

Blue Elemental Blast, Hydroblast, Pyroblast and Red Elemental Blast – For their colored matchups respectively.

Exclude and Negate – Some extra counter magic. I want to say I am not a huge fan of Exclude these days. I personally think we are passed the days of a 3 mana Remove Soul being good enough even if it draws a card but this is just my opinion.

Ancient Grudge – This is fairly good against Affinity and also helps against the mirror because destroying the mana rocks can through them off being able to cast spells.

Breath Weapon – An extra wrath if you need it.

Moment's Peace and Stonehorn Dignitary – Extra copies for the aggro decks just in case.

Weather the Storm – Not today Burn!

Verdict and Conclusion

Ah good old Blue Urza Tron. Everyone’s favorite deck that will always be the best deck ever. Is it back? Does the printing of Energy Refractor raise it from the grave to dominate once again? Well, the answer is yes and no.

Blue Tron is still a good archetype and does some very powerful things. The tricky part about playing Blue Tron is that you need to make sure your list is built to beat a specific meta game. Most of the time, blue tron lists like the one I talked about today does not necessarily have enough stuff to deal with everything and is spread a tiny bit thin.

Over time and as newer cards got printed, the Pauper format has evolved and has become quit a bit faster. The loss of Prism and Ornament still hurts and while Refractor does help a ton, I don’t think it alone will return Blue Tron to its former glory, but again that is also because the format itself has shifted.

This list did get 3rd place though and it is a good sign (or bad) that Tron is here to stay. I think we just need some time to see how the format develops with the release of Brothers’ War.

Do I think you should play Blue Tron? I think the archetype is still very powerful and a fine choice. However your list may differ depending on what tournament you play in. A local tournament or a league may not have the same meta as a weekend challenge. This means you need to plan accordingly and make sure you show up prepared with the right 75.

I know that I didn’t have any ground breaking words about the archetype and the reason for that is because it hasn’t really changed. I will revisit this version of Tron again in the future. For now my verdict is that it is still good, but you need to build it right for the specific tournament you are going to.