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By: romellos, A. Atasoy
Sep 19 2013 10:24am
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   Hello everyone and welcome back to the new edition of the Standard Budget series, where I continue to share some of my budget and semi budget deck brews & reviews for the Standard format. We are living one of those special times where we are eagerly awaiting to start a new journey in the MTG Multiverse. This is the excitement of new cards and innovations that will show us new possibilities for the days to come...

Finally, the whole Theros set has been revealed and we are hundred percent ready to brew new decks with some safe (or crazy) ideas for the next Standard season. It seems, this year we are going to have much slower Standard environment than the previous years. And Theros supports this slowdown as the general tendency of this set is focused on the Midrange curve. But this doesn't mean that, we won't see any fast paced aggressive decks around. As there will be still various of options to brew really fast Mono Red, Mono White, Boros, Rakdos or Gruul decks.

I will start my Theros deck reviews with the Mono White Weenie option and its very close Boros variant with some flavored additions from the Theros set. I'm a great fan of White Weenie type decks for years and I have brewed or at least tried to brew lots of Mono White aggressive decks during every Standard season. Some of those ideas shined and some of them become total failures during my brewing attempts. And this year, I'm more optimist about White deck variants. We have a great card pool to brew various of different White Weenie decks due to the RtR Guilds and Heroic mechanic from the Theros.

Today, I will review a Mono White Weenie and a semi-Boros deck brew without any one of those specialized Guild or Heroic approaches as a starting point. But, I will definitely re-visit White Weenie & Boros with heavily specialized Heroic themed brews during this season.

Let's begin to this journey with the Heroes of the Sun...

Heroes of the Sun
post-rotation semi-budget Standard deck by romellos
Creatures
4 Dryad Militant
4 Judge's Familiar
4 Precinct Captain
2 Banisher Priest
2 Heliod, God of the Sun
4 Soldier of the Pantheon
4 Fiendslayer Paladin
3 Imposing Sovereign
4 Fabled Hero
31 cards

Other Spells
4 Ajani, Caller of the Pride
4 Brave the Elements
1 Spear of Heliod
9 cards
 
Lands
20 Plains
20 cards

Fabled Hero

 

First, I have started to brew this deck as a budget deck (total cost up to 20 tickets). Then, I decided to move to the semi-budget limits (up to 40 tickets) due to the un-released cards like; Heliod, God of the Sun or Soldier of the Pantheon. The current cost of this deck is 23.84 ticket total at MTGO Traders for all released cards at the Main deck & Sideboard sections and it doesn't include any one of new Theros cards. Even that, the current cost is very fair for such an entertaining deck. The biggest unknown element in this deck is Heliod, God of the Sun. And, I only included him in this deck to reflect the Theros' God theme. Regardless of White God card, I don't expect other Theros cards to be too hot after 1-2 months. 

The Curve of this deck is balanced for each CMC step (up to Four CMC range). We have lots of effective & cheap Savannah Lions variants & Taxers for the early Turns to get the upper hand.

Savannah Lions  Dryad Militant  Soldier of the Pantheon

It is so obvious that Old Lion is not the King anymore. Now, it's only a matter of Meta perspective about who is the new rightful King of the Savannah. And in that regard, Dryad Militant & Soldier of the Pantheon are our Top Two contenders who can climb this ladder to claim the throne.

Dryad Militant is more effective against the Flashback cards or Snapcaster Mage strategies with her specialized Graveyard Hate to exile Instant & Sorcery spells. But, all these Graveyard based Instant & Sorcery utilities will leave Standard within a few weeks. So, she will be just a Elite Vanguard this year.

Soldier of the Pantheon is basically a creature with a protection from the RtR Block. And this makes him far superior that Dryad Militant at this evaluation. He can be effective to stop or evade any multicolored creatures like; Boros Reckoner or Loxodon Smiter that we are going to see in the current Standard environment a lot. And he also dodges all the multicolored removal spells & effects. Even, his Life gain bonus can be a crucial turning point during some games against the Two or more colored decks.

Judge's Familiar  Imposing Sovereign

Judge's Familiar is a flying Cursecatcher with the same Force Spike ability, which can be effective to cause some disruptions & delays. Our opponent has to wait One more Turn to play the instant or Sorcery spells while we continue to attack (unless they can't be countered).

Imposing Sovereign is another unique card with an anti-tempo tax effect against the opponent's creature. She is really effective as an early turn option to nullify the timely blockers or the Haste factor of the RDW type decks with her Kismet like Tax effect. 

Precinct Captain  Banisher Priest

Precinct Captain is one of the best Soldier cards that ever printed with his pseudo-Hero of Bladehold combat trigger. He is one of those cards, that need to be answered as soon as possible or it will be too late to stop the raids of free 1/1 Soldier tokens.  

Banisher Priest is basically a fixed reprint of Fiend Hunter. Even that, her 2/2 body can be a more crucial thing than a 1/3 against various of decks. It is a good thing to have a such Journey to Nowhere effect on a stick again that we can utilize in any Mono White decks freely. Otherwise, we have to find a Mountain in order to chain opponent's creatures.

Fiendslayer Paladin  Fabled Hero 

It is for sure that, Fiendslayer Paladin is not a Paladin en-Vec. But still Fiendslayer Paladin can do the work on his own, even as a 2/2 creature with First Strike & Lifelink ability. And he also dodges all the Black & Red spot removal spells. I believe that Fiendslayer Paladin can be a decent creature in the such decks like this one. And he really shines in the Hexproof type decks where we can maximize his efficiency with the Aura spells.

Fabled Hero is a Fourth generation Double Striker with the Three CMC and 2/2 body, after Hearthfire HobgoblinMirran Crusader and  Silverblade Paladin. And this shows us that, New isn't always Better. Technically, Fabled Hero can easily grow as a 4/4 or 5/5 creature very often in the right Heroic decks. But, I personally prefer something more consistent and self-contained. Regardless of my thoughts about him, I will continue to use Fabled Hero in my Standard White Weenie decks. As we don't have any better alternatives over him.

Heliod, God of the Sun  Spear of Heliod 

Heliod, God of the Sun is the strongest God in the Theros storyline, but his card version is currently regarded as one of the weakest ones among the Five God cycle. He is just an over costed Mobilization with a global Vigilance bonus, without his Devotion. So, we need a dedicated deck in order to fully utilize his potential. At that point, White Weenie or Boros can be a right choice to achieve his Devotion more easily than a control deck. Heliod (as a creature) and his abilities can be also very useful during the Midrange or Late game stages, where crazy things started to happen on the board.

It's a little weird that, I'm more excited for Heliod's augury than himself as Spear of Heliod is really a promising card with its double value in a one package. First, this is a Glorious Anthem which, it is always a good to have this effect around. Secondly, we can activate its ability for a repeatable Avenging Arrow spell. Aggressive or Midrange decks can easily add One or Two Spear of Heliod to the Main deck to get benefits from this Card. It won't even surprise me to see Spear of Heliod in the Esper Control decks as a Silver bullet.

Brave the Elements  Ajani, Caller of the Pride

Brave the Elements is effective with its Global Protection for our all White creatures against any spot removal spell & global damage effects. Or we can also use it for an Alpha attack that can't be blocked. No matter what, this is One CMC card and cheap spells with great effects are always useful in the aggressive decks.

Normally, I don't include any Planeswalkers to my decks due to the Budget concept in this series. There is a first time for everything. As, the current price of Ajani, Caller of the Pride is fairly low for a Planeswalker that we can use in the Standard. Ajani, Caller of the Pride is Three CMC, so it will be easy to bring him in the curve. And his abilities are very well fit for the White Weenie type decks to maximize the power of Creatures. Overall, any Planeswalker with Three CMC is worth to be considered.

 

Here is my second deck; Fables of Boros which is following the same brew philosophy of my first deck.

Fables of Boros
post-rotation semi-budget Standard deck by romellos
Creatures
3 Dryad Militant
3 Anax and Cymede
3 Soldier of the Pantheon
4 Fiendslayer Paladin
4 Imposing Sovereign
4 Fabled Hero
4 Judge's Familiar
4 Precinct Captain
29 cards

Other Spells
2 Boros Charm
2 Ajani, Caller of the Pride
4 Brave the Elements
1 Spear of Heliod
2 Lightning Strike
11 cards
             
Lands
4 Boros Guildgate
12 Plains
4 Sacred Foundry
20 cards

Sideboard
2 Boros Charm
2 Renounce the Guilds
2 Lightning Strike
4 Wear/Tear
3 Burning Earth
2 Rest in Peace
15 cards
 
Anax and Cymede

 

The creature base and the main deck structure is nearly same as in the Mono White Weenie version. There are only minor adjustments on the Boros side.

Anax and Cymede  Lightning Strike

Anax and Cymede are our Boros King & Queen from Theros. Regardless of their Heroic ability, this card is just a Pure & Aggressive Boros Beater. And this is what Anax and Cymede will be most of the times.

It would be so great and flavorful to see the reprint of Lightning Bolt in this set. But instead, we have received a functional reprint of Searing Spear. So, actually nothing will change for us. We used to play with Searing Spear and now, we are going to play with Lightning Strike. Same effect under the different name. The only question mark in our current situation is; whether should we play with Lightning Strike or Magma Jet (or Mizzium Mortars over those Two).

Boros Guildgate  Temple of Triumph

During this Standard season, we are going to have Two options for the un-conditional Tap Lands. Both of these Land Cycles are nearly identical to each other, except the slight Scry 1 ETB bonus of the Temple Lands. The differentiate will just come from the Budget criteria as Guildgates will be the obvious choice in that matter.  

 

WRAP UP:

See you next time in the "Standard Budget" series with new Budget & Semi-budget Standard deck brews. I will continue to my journeys in the Theros.  Next time, I will look into the Steam for any Auguries to come...

5 Comments

WW by jokeandcolor at Thu, 09/19/2013 - 19:27
jokeandcolor's picture

Respect to a fellow White Weenie brewer. Been a fan ever since I discovered the Hold the Line event deck and how much fun Angelic destiny could be when thrown on Mirran Crusader. Good times.

When I saw Fabled Hero I just by Kumagoro42 at Thu, 09/19/2013 - 22:26
Kumagoro42's picture
5

When I saw Fabled Hero I just knew you would put him in one of your WW decks! :)

So, are we agreeing that Heroic looks very hard to fully exploit? (In fact, I think these decks don't have any way to trigger it). How many beneficial spells that target a single creature can one expect to put in a deck, when the usual amount is zero, if not for the occasional Rancor (that's not even in Standard anymore)?

I think we may see some rogue by romellos at Fri, 09/20/2013 - 18:35
romellos's picture

I think we may see some rogue Mono White, Boros or Selesnya variant Heroic decks in the Standard. I believe Heroic decks have more chance for the Block rather than the Standard.

I agree with you that Heroic concept is hard to exploit due to its restricted nature. At least Heroic cards are good targets for Aura spells. And I think this can be the loophole (at least for eternal formats). Rancor could be fantastic with them. And I want to try: Whip Silk, Crown of Flames, Conviction, Sun Clasp or Flickering Ward with the Heroic cards.

I was surprised that you by Procrastination at Fri, 09/20/2013 - 16:03
Procrastination's picture

I was surprised that you didn't try to make the Boros list a little more "Heroic" friendly. Sure, Heroic isn't "very good", but now is the time to give the wacky ideas some love!

An undisturbed, Fabled Hero plus Madcap Skills is a 2 turn clock! Boros gets Martial Glory, which aimed properly at A&C + Fabled Hero makes the Hero alone a 7/3 Trample Doublestriker!

Heroic Boros might be the Naya Blitz of this Standard; Explosive yet Inconsistent.

Thanks for your comments. My by romellos at Fri, 09/20/2013 - 18:42
romellos's picture

Thanks for your comments.

My Boros deck didn't follow Heroic path, as I wanted to keep it something close to the White Weenie version.

Currently we have lots of options to brew Boros decks with very different approaches. And Heroic path is one of them with different creature base and support spells with multiple targets. I think Heroic decks can be very entertaining deck choices for the casual games. And I'm looking forward to play with them.