Something is bothering me, and I am just going to come out and say it. Magic decks names are pretty dumb. I’ve been playing long enough to remember deck names like Turbo Stasis (which was a Stasis deck that still won pretty slowly, there was nothing turbo about it), Full English Breakfast (you can guess what that deck does, but it does not even tell you, and instead drew inspiration of other Extended format decknames from the period, which were named after breakfast cereal), to Robots (which was WotC’s attempt to rename Affinity in coverage, even though the deck did not really have any cards with the mechanic in it anymore). Of course, these names, and others, like Trix, Ponza, The Deck and Miracle Grow are iconic names, entrenched in the history of the game.
New deck naming conventions are a thing now, instead of something creative, it’s mainly descriptive. When you hear Grixis Delver in Legacy, you know you’re looking at a deck that features the Grixis shard and Delver of Secrets. From that you can assume the deck has plenty of cards that interact favorably with the Delvers. When you see Lands, you know you’re going to be looking at a deck that features an absurd amount of lands. Even in Standard the deck name is typically the color of the deck and a key card name or mechanic. Something like Ramunap Red lets you know you’re looking at a Red deck featuring deserts. Temur Energy let us know that a Red Green Blue deck was being featured, and so was the energy mechanic. These more generic names make it easier for people who are tuning in to coverage to be at least a little familiar with what is being played. These more generic names make much more sense than names of the past and make it easier to an audience to know what to expect.
This is why calling today’s deck Black Red Vehicles is so nonsensical to me. The Vehicle mechanic is really cool, and when Chris Van Meter won an open back in 2016, there were nine vehicles in the deck. Not only did the deck have the vehicles, but it also ran cards like Toolcraft Exemplar, Veteran Motorist, and Depala, Pilot Exemplar to really take advantage of those cards. Since then Smuggler’s Copter was removed from the format, and instead of being the centerpiece of a deck, they are in more of a support role. Calling a deck with three vehicles in the main, and none in the board Vehicles makes no sense to me. Today’s deck is just a Black Red aggro deck that runs three Heart of Kiran. Would we call a Red Black deck that ran three Loxodon Warhammers Red Black Warhammer? Probably not.
I guess not only have I stolen the daily decklist concept, but also the sick of it concept. There may not be an original bone in my body.
Anyways, quickly on to the deck. The creatures here are the among the best that red can offer. Glorybringer is a heck of a threat and can exert itself to deal with the most problematic creatures on your opponent’s side of the board. Goblin Chainwhirler does incredible work against decks that are trying to go wide with it’s come in to play ability. Pia Nalaar brings in a buddy and has some synergy with the artifacts in the deck. Rekindling Phoenix is hard to deal with, often times taking two control spells to be dealt with properly. Scrapheap Scrounger, an artifact, and one of the two main deck cards that require black mana, keeps coming back. Soul-Scar Mage is a nice cheap threat for the deck, and finally Walking Ballista is still one of the best creatures in Standard. Heart of Kiran, the lone vehicle of the deck provides a flying vigilant threat that can dodge Seal Away and can be crewed by Planeswalkers.
The removal spells in the deck feature the versatile Abrade, which can either kill an artifact or deal three damage to a creature. Magma Spray takes care of opposing Scrapheap Scroungers forever for the low cost of one mana. Unlicensed Disintegration just kills whatever you want it to, and while weakened with the recent rules changes, does deal three damage to the player if you control an artifact. The deck also features two copies of Karn, Scion of Urza, which gives the deck much needed gas in the late game, or gives us another creature if we’re trying to apply as much pressure as possible. The copies of Chandra, Torch of Defiance are nice as well, as she gives us another clock with her first plus one and ultimate. She can also ramp us if we miss a land drop or want to drop multiple threats in a turn. Finally she’s a bit of removal as well!
The Black Red archetype really blew up at Grand Prix Birmingham with six copies of it in the top eight, so as you prepare for an upcoming Standard event, you have to be ready for this, or face, sigh, getting ran of the road by it.
Black Red Vehicles
Trackback from your site.