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By: TheWolf, Shane Garvey
Feb 14 2019 1:00pm
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Welcome to part two of my guide to drafting Ravnica Allegiance. If you missed part one, you can find it here; I suggest you go back and read that one before continuing with this one.

Other Decks

Despite there just being five guilds, there are other decks you can draft that work if you can pull them off. One of these is completely different to the guild decks, while three of them are variations of the normal archetypes.

Gates

The Gates deck can be very strong if you can pull it off. As the name suggests, this deck is built around the Guildgates and the cycle of cards that get better when you have them, especially Gatebreaker Ram, Gates Ablaze and Gateway Colossus. These cards are incredibly strong in a Gates deck, and you can have a lot of success by drafting it.

I usually get into this deck in one of two ways. If I see one of three cards mentioned above early, I will usually take them, even as high as first pick, then look to see if I can soft force the deck. Even if I can't, the Ram and the Colossus are still good even with three-four Guildgates, so I don't feel like I'm wasting a pick. The second way is seeing these cards from about fourth pick on. This is a huge sign that this deck is open, and I'll move in at that point.

Best Commons For This Deck: Azorius Guildgate, Gateway Plaza, Gruul Guildgate, Open the Gates, Orzhov Guildgate, Rakdos Guildgate, Simic Guildgate. You don't want too many Gateway Plazas, but you want to get at least eight Gates and as many as fourteen.

Best Uncommons For This Deck: Archway Angel, Gatebreaker Ram, Gate Colossus, Gates Ablaze, Gateway Sneak.

 

High Alert

High Alert is a card that rewards you for having high toughness creatures, which is something that Azorius does pretty well anyway. This deck ends up being pretty similar to the standard Azorius archetype but with a an exception. You want to focus on those high toughness creatures, and even cards like Wall of Lost Thoughts and Junktroller go up in value. Otherwise, draft it like a normal white/blue deck.

I don't usually end up in this deck on purpose. What normally happens is I find myself drafting Azorius normally, then see a High Alert late in pack one or early pack two. I'll often take it at that point, then value the higher toughness creatures and defenders a bit higher to start rounding out the deck.

Best Commons For This Deck: Anything from the Azorius archetype list, plus Concordia Pegasus, Humongulus.

Best Uncommons For This Deck: Anything from the Azorius archetype list, plus Junktroller, Wall of Lost Thoughts.

 

Dovin's Acuity

Another Azorius deck, this one does actually play out a bit differently. It ends up being more of a control deck, with the best versions I've seen taking the game long and milling out the opponent. Obviously, the deck is built around Dovin's Acuity and that card changes how you build the deck. This is the deck that takes the most advantage of Azorius' guild mechanic, Addendum. You want to be taking instants with Addendum in order to get the best value and to trigger Acuity. This will allow you to burn through your deck to get to your good cards, but be careful - it is possible to mill yourself. For this reason, you also need a couple of copies of the otherwise unplayable Clear the Mind to prevent you from losing to your own deck. The rest of the deck is filled out with defensive cards like Wall of Lost Thoughts and Thought Collapse, to name two of the best.

You have to be careful drafting this deck, as it is very easy to draft bad versions of it. I usually take Dovin's Acuity early, around third-fourth pick, but I will quickly abandon it if I am not seeing cards like Summary Judgment or Arrester's Admonition being passed to me. 

Best Commons For This Deck: Arrester's Admonition, Persistent Petitioners, Sphinx's Insight, Summary Judgement, Thought Collapse.

Best Uncommons For This Deck: Code of Constraint, Depose/Deploy, Dovin's Acuity, Senate Guildmage, Wall of Lost Thoughts.

 

Cavalcade of Calamity

This is a bit of a strange deck, and maybe the most 'build-around' of them all. Obviously, the key card is Cavalcade of Calamity. You need to pick this up early, then begin drafting as many 1-power creatures as you can. For this reason, the deck usually ends up Rakdos in colour, as your key 1-power creatures are in black and red. 

While this isn't a deck I look to go into (and have not drafted), I have lost to it, and there does seem to be something there for it. If you have given this a go, let me know in the comments.

Best Commons For This Deck: Burn Bright, Footlight Fiend, Goblin Gathering, Rakdos Trumpeter, Thirsting Shade. You want as many Goblin Gatherings as you can get for this deck. There is no such thing as too many.

Best Uncommons For This Deck: Cavalcade of Calamity, Orzhov Enforcer, Tin Street Dodger

 

General Tips For Drafting This Set

  • Take the most powerful cards in a pack early, even if they are gold cards. Most of the power of this set is in the multicolour cards, so taking them early is usually correct. The only time I would shy away from this is if there is a gold card and a monocoloured card of similar power. Even if the monocoloured card is slightly less powerful (not by much), I would take it.
  • Don't get married to your first picks. You need to be able to read the signals in this set. If you see, for example, an Aeromunculus fourth pick or later, you should probably move into Simic, even if it means abandoning all the cards you have already drafted. Finding the open guild is very important, and I have won drafts where I have abandoned my first six picks to move in an entirely different direction.
  • Guildgates are good cards. You want to be taking these reasonably highly - and higher if you have some of the Gate payoff cards. As a general rule, if there is a choice between an average card and a Guildgate, I'll take the Guildgate.
  • Don't be afraid to splash, but two colours is still better than three or more. I have found the two colour decks are just much more consistent, though I will certainly splash if I am low on removal or I have a bomb rare.

 

Card Ratings

In the pictures below, you will find my current ratings for every card from Ravnica Allegiance. These ratings are out of 10, with 10 being the best of the best and 0 being unplayable trash. The average is 5. Generally speaking, cards rated 7-7.5 or higher are cards you are happy first picking; cards rated below 5 you generally don't want to include in your deck unless you have a specific reason to.