Fournier’s Goblin Guide: Week 1 ELD Standard, GP MTL and SCG Philly

Welcome to another edition of the [Card]Goblin Guide[/Card], where I take a look at what’s happened in tournament Magic over the last week and tell you exactly what you need to know going into the weekend’s events. With SCG Philadephia, or rather King of Prussia, just around the corner, all three formats are on the docket at this trios event. There’s lots of information to get to, so let’s get cracking.

Another week has passed and we finally have some Eldraine Standard to look at. The format is starting to shape up, with three distinct strategies really taking the forefront. The first are [Card]Edgewall Innkeeper[/Card] decks, trying to exploit its synergy with Adventure cards to flood the board with mediocre creatures. The Golgari flavours seek to use black’s superior removal suite and higher quality adventure creatures, while Selesnya builds flood the board more effectively, going wide with [Card]March of the Multitudes[/Card] and [Card]Venerated Loxodon[/Card]. I cannot in good conscience recommend these decks full of one mana 1/1s looking to grind out on-board presence. Sure, they’re sweet synergistic creature decks, but they’re full of downright embarrassing cards and can’t possibly hold a candle to the [Card]Field of the Dead[/Card] decks that can go way over the top.

Speaking of which, the Bant Golos deck is my first of two Standard recommendations for this weekend.

[Deck Title= Bant Golos – Brad Nelson]
3 Arboreal Grazer
1 Fae of Wishes
4 Golos, Tireless Pilgrim
4 Hydroid Krasis
2 Realm-Cloaked Giant
4 Growth Spiral
4 Once Upon a Time
2 Time Wipe
4 Circuitous Route
3 Teferi, Time Raveler
1 Tranquil Cove
1 Azorius Guildgate
1 Blossoming Sands
1 Boros Guildgate
2 Breeding Pool
1 Castle Vantress
2 Fabled Passage
2 Temple Garden
1 Temple of Malady
1 Temple of Mystery
1 Selesnya Guildgate
1 Simic Guildgate
1 Orzhov Guildgate
1 Plains
1 Plaza of Harmony
2 Island
2 Hallowed Fountain
1 Golgari Guildgate
4 Field of the Dead
2 Forest
2 Aether Gust
2 Agent of Treachery
2 Devout Decree
1 Glass Casket
1 Jace, Wielder of Mysteries
1 Mystical Dispute
2 Negate
1 Planar Cleansing
2 Unmoored Ego
1 Veil of Summer

Three Teferis, eh? Can’t say I’m all that sure about that, but who am I to question the master? Brad put up another unsurprising Fandom Legends finish with the format’s biggest deck, hardly weakened by the untimely loss of [Card]Scapeshift[/Card]. Golos does a great [Card]Primeval Titan[/Card] impression, and with little hate in sight, I’m confident in recommending this [Card]Field of the Dead[/Card] deck to anyone in a Standard seat this weekend.

Off-colour guildgates not your thing? Mine neither, so I have a second deck for your perusal this week. Jess Estephan iterated off Brad’s Simic deck that I recommended last week, and all but swept her MPL division with the powerful combo of [Card]Birds of Paradise[/Card] and two unbeatable three-mana Planeswalkers.

[Deck Title= Bant Food – Jessica Estephan]
1 Arboreal Grazer
1 Deputy of Detention
4 Gilded Goose
4 Hydroid Krasis
4 Leafkin Druid
1 Paradise Druid
3 Risen Reef
2 Voracious Hydra
3 Wicked Wolf
4 Nissa, Who Shakes the World
4 Oko, Thief of Crowns
1 Once Upon a Time
4 Teferi, Time Raveler
4 Breeding Pool
4 Temple Garden
1 Temple of Mystery
1 Plains
1 Island
4 Hallowed Fountain
4 Fabled Passage
5 Forest
2 Agent of Treachery
1 Deputy of Detention
2 Disdainful Stroke
2 Glass Casket
2 Negate
2 Questing Beast
2 Tolsimir, Friend to Wolves
2 Veil of Summer

This deck rocks, and I love it. Nissa is just such a powerful card, and my experience with the Simic deck concluded pretty quickly that the green Castle was hardly important in a deck with [Card]Leafkin Dryad[/Card]. I’d rather have Teferi and [Card]Deputy of Detention[/Card]. I’m not sure if the MPL split’s playoffs have been played yet, but good luck to her regardless!

Let’s move on to Modern, where a new boogeyman has emerged.

[Deck Title= Jeskai Paradoxical Outcome – Cain Rianhard]
4 Emry, Lurker of the Loch
2 Sai, Master Thopterist
4 Urza, Lord High Artificer
4 Engineered Explosives
4 Mishra’s Bauble
4 Mox Amber
4 Mox Opal
4 Arcum’s Astrolabe
1 Witching Well
4 Jeskai Ascendancy
2 Saheeli, Sublime Artificer
4 Paradoxical Outcome
1 Nexus of Fate
4 Flooded Strand
4 Scalding Tarn
1 Prismatic Vista
1 Sacred Foundry
1 Steam Vents
5 Snow-Covered Island
1 Snow-Covered Mountain
1 Snow-Covered Plains
3 Galvanic Blast
2 Mystical Dispute
2 Path to Exile
2 Teferi, Time Raveler
2 Timely Reinforcements
1 Ceremonious Rejection
1 Narset, Parter of Veils
1 Pithing Needle
1 Tormod’s Crypt

There are many builds of [Card]Paradoxical Outcome[/Card] Urza, but I’m confident that this is the right approach. Sure, [Card]Jeskai Ascendancy[/Card] can be a pain to cast in a deck with so many Islands, but its explosive combo potential is downright outrageous. This deck can now turn two people with Emry and Ascendancy. It has absurd resilience to disruption thanks to the high threat density and every card providing some kind of card advantage engine. It even has a solid plan B with many of its combo pieces actually playing to the board quite effectively. This deck is bonkers, and you’d be doing yourself a disservice by disrespecting it. I’m not confident the sideboard is entirely there, but that’s absolutely fair for a new deck.

Storm won the last big Legacy event, and with Depths at an all-time low thanks to an oppressive metagame, I think it’s time to go back to Delver. For a classic deck like this one, surging in a metagame in which it’s historically been comfortable, I think it’s right to take the old school approach to Insectile Aberration beatdown this weekend. Our very own Daryl Ayers wrote about this just the other week, then went on to win a PTQ shortly after! Now that’s some results-oriented thinking!

[Deck Title= Temur Delver – Daryl Ayers]
4 Delver of Secrets
3 Hooting Mandrills
4 Tarmogoyf
2 Wrenn and Six
4 Lightning Bolt
2 Spell Pierce
2 Spell Snare
4 Stifle
4 Daze
4 Force of WIll
4 Brainstorm
4 Ponder
1 Preordain
4 Polluted Delta
4 Scalding Tarn
3 Tropical Island
3 Volcanic Island
4 Wasteland
3 Submerge
1 Wrenn and Six
1 Winter Orb
2 Force of Negation
2 Flusterstorm
1 Red Elemental Blast
1 Pyroblast
1 Grafdigger’s Cage
1 Surgical Extraction
2 Ancient Grudge

Good luck on the battlefield! I’ll be sitting out this weekend to attend a friend’s wedding, but I’ll still be rooting for all my less-getting-married friends in Montreal and the barren suburbs of Philly. Make sure to check out the Face to Face Games booth in Montreal for an absurd 40 per cent store credit trade-in bonus, and join me at the Toronto store on Sunday for some fun casual Team Sealed.