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By: Arctic_Ghost, Arctic_Ghost
Jan 27 2022 12:06pm
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Recent ban list changes have come to shake Pauper up, or at the very least, attempt to shake things up. Bonder's Ornament and Prophetic Prism have found their way on the list to (I assume because Wizards said it) hurt Tron. I don’t agree with Bonder's Ornament getting the ban hammer, but that is not the topic of today.

More importantly for today, Atog has also been banned along side Prophetic Prism. Will this be enough to hurt Affinity? Not one bit it seems. Today we will be looking at the winning list from the challenge that took place on 1/22/2022 and was piloted by the player Tozla. Lets get right into it.



Myr Enforcer – Wouldn’t be Affinity without this creature.

Gearseeker Serpent – I love this creature and I am happy to see it getting played. Although a bit more difficult to cast, it shouldn’t be too hard to meet the mana requirements and it is a big creature that can end the game extremely quickly.

Krark-Clan Grunt – The next best thing to Atog. It costs 1 more to cast which is annoying, but it does exactly what you need it to. It sacrifices artifacts to combo with Disciple of the Vault and it pumps its power so that you can use cards such as Fling to win the game. Unlike Atog, we only see 2 copies of this card in the deck and I like that. Being 3 mana as opposed to 2 and not pumping its toughness to survive something like a Lightning Bolt makes it so this is more of a pure combo card, rather than a true part of the archetype.

Disciple of the Vault – Can’t get through the red zone? Here is your solution!

Thoughtcast – A staple of the Affinity archetype since the day Affinity got spoiled more than a decade ago. Never play less than 4 in my opinion.

Galvanic Blast – This has become a staple of the Affinity archetype in Pauper and for good reason. It deals with most threats or can take a decent chunk out of your opponents life total.

Blood Fountain – I like this card a lot. It can return up to 2 creatures from your graveyard so that you can fight a longer game or set your combo back up and it brings along a Blood Token for you to use if you need to draw a card. A cool thing about this card, it adds 2 counts to your Affinity because the token it brings is also an artifact.

Makeshift Munitions – This can help a ton at ending games. It can also help you play a sort of control game against aggro decks such as Elves for example.

Deadly Dispute – Another great card. You have tons of artifacts to sacrifice and 8 of them draw cards when they go to the graveyard. This card gives you a ton of card advantage and a Treasure token to ramp a little with.

Chromatic Star – This helps you fix your mana and draws a card when it goes to the graveyard. It doesn’t have to be used to draw a card, it just has to go to the graveyard. This makes it great with Deadly Dispute.

Ichor Wellspring – A 2 mana artifact that draws 2 cards. Not the most powerful card ever, but it serves its purpose well.

Wedding Invitation – You will notice there are no copies of Fling in the main deck. This is your way of replacing Fling. It draws a card when it enters the battlefield and it can make a creature unblockable. This does the same thing as Fling more or less but you don’t need to lose a creature to do it and it can’t be countered by cards such as Dispel or Hydroblast. I like this card personally. There is a catch though, you do lose to removal a bit harder because you need to get through the red zone, so as far as it being better than Fling, it depends on the meta you expect to face in my opinion. Attacking also loses to Moment’s Peace. Both all in routes still get hurt by Prismatic Strands.

The Manabase

Seat of the Synod, Vault of Whispers and Great Furnace – This archetype does not function without these artifact lands so please do not play less than 4 of them.

Mistvault Bridge, Drossforge Bridge and Silverbluff Bridge – Although they come into play tapped, they help you cast your spells and you still have the potential to end the game quickly. There are only 5 of these duels because you can’t afford to be too slow.

There is 1 Island to round out the manabase at an even 18 lands. The Island comes into play untapped and cannot be hit by artifact hate and can still help cast Thoughtcast. Now that Prophetic Prism is gone, playing an extra artifact land such as Darksteel Citadel can hurt you a bit in the long run.

The Sideboard

Ancient Grudge and Gorilla Shaman – Here are some cards for the mirror.

Blue Elemental Blast and Red Elemental Blast – For your blue and red matchups.

Dispel – Extra help against counter and removal heavy decks. I like playing this as a 1 of in the main sometimes depending on the meta you think you will face.

Electrickery, Fiery Cannonade and Krark-Clan Shaman – Here are your anti aggro cards. Remember! When using the Shaman, press down your control key before and while using their ability or else it will not work correctly.

Verdict and Conclusion

So Atog and Prophetic Prism are down for the dirt nap, for now. Was that enough to hurt Affinity? I don’t think so. All it did was hurt Tron and make Affinity have to use new toys. This archetype won a Challenge and that is no easy thing to do.

Affinity is clearly here to stay and will most likely remain one of, if not, the best deck in the format. Krark-Clan Grunt is no Atog, but it helps you combo off and that is all you need. This list is not the only way to build the archetype and I look forward to seeing what players do in the coming weeks. Will it be as dominant as it has been? Honestly, there is a good chance it will remain that way.

Do I think you should play this deck? Yes I do. Should you play this list? This is a great place to start but is probably not the be all end all. I like that Wedding Invitation doesn’t need you to necessarily lose a creature to win the game and it draws a card. Is it better than Fling as a whole? As I said earlier, it depends. While Fling loses to counterspells, Wedding Invitation loses to removal spells. So it all depends on the meta you expect to face.

However, with all this being said, as always, do remember my words are not gospel. I will always encourage you to try a deck that I bring you despite my personal feelings. Remember that results will vary and always remember to practice!

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!

Thank you so much for reading. Best of luck to you in your next tournament and I’ll catch you all next time!