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Decknology: Full of Surprises

Written by LegitMTG Staff on . Posted in Competitive Magic, FNM, Standard

Editor’s Note: Decknology is a weekly series with two Standard decks you can sleeve up tonight for Friday Night Magic. We hope to feature some Tier 1 decks and some spicy brews, but need your help! For a chance to be featured, submit your decklist with accompanying article (about 750 words) to editor@legitmtg.com. For best results, focus on what makes your 75 stand out from the crowd.

Previously on Decknology: Tezzeret Superfriends and BUG DelverUB Vampires and Monoblack Artifacts; Hellrider and Quirion Dryad; Naya Beats and RG Aggro.

Trading Post Twist by David Doyle

David Doyle is a student at Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond, Ky. When he isn’t hitting the books and working to become a teacher, he likes building decks. Known for bringing fun, off-the-wall decks to FNM, he has a fire for deckbuilding things that take people by surprise.

Oh, boy, do I have a deck today. If you love durdling around and want to watch your opponent scratch his head, give this a try!. It’s a monowhite Trading Post deck that’s splashing blue for Temporal Mastery and Tamiyo, Moon Sage whose main win condition is infect, and it has a subtheme of miracles.


Trading Post

The underlying engine driving the deck is the Trading Post engine. Many, many people (Brad Nelson) have been building Trading Post decks to varying success. One of the things that has remained constant is Wellsprings. I like the 3-3 split between Ichor Wellspring and Mycosynth Wellspring because you want a lot of sacrifice fodder and card-advantage generators.

Mox Opal acts as my 24th land and is invaluable for mana fixing. The rest of the Post package is rounded out by Buried Ruin and Phyrexia’s Core. Unlike most other Trading Post decks, this isn’t using Sphere of the Suns because it’s not particularly interested in acceleration.


The sheer power level of Entreat the Angels, Terminus and Temporal Mastery when they’re flipped off the top is amazing and may outright win you the game. Without Terminus, I probably wouldn’t have even given the other two a second look. It does everything your deck needs, and it’s not even that bad when cast normally.

Temporal Mastery is good miracled at almost any point, but it’s kinda miserable in your opening hand. If you manage to cast it for full price, you can usually use that extra turn to pull ahead or get another draw step towards a miracle. Entreat the Angels is an alternate win condition if your opponent is able to deal with the infect portion.


Gideon Jura does a really good Time Walk impression and can double (triple?) as removal and another win condition. Tamiyo, Moon Sage freezes attackers and can even draw some cards, and her ultimate is absurd in this deck. One of my favorite ways to use her, actually, is freezing a Birthing Pod. Dispatch is going to be your spot removal. You can usually have metalcraft by Turn 5, making it a better Swords of Plowshares.


Tumble Magnet comes in against Wolf Run or anything else that likes to finish with large creatures. Mindslaver comes in against other control decks, and you can loop it with two Trading Posts to infinitely take your opponent’s turns. Divine Offering comes in against Pod decks and Pike/Sword versions of Delver of Secrets. The Swamp and Nihil Spellbombs come in against Pike Delver and Unburial Rites decks. The Trinket Mage packing will usually come in against Zombies or monored.


Everything in this deck seamlessly meshes together like cogs in a machine. The overlap of applications in this deck is really, really cool.

  • My favorite little piece of synergy is looping Necropede with Trading Post. If you have two Necropedes and at least one Trading Post (though this works better with multiple Posts), you can sacrifice one to find another in the graveyard and recast the new one.
  • This deck  has the fastest Tamiyo ultimate I’ve seen. It’s so good it’s a legitimate game plan to protect her while proliferating as quickly as possible.
  • Much like Think Twice is the go-to instant-speed card draw to miracle on your opponent’s turn in more traditional decks, Trading Post fills that role. The advantage is it costs less mana, which means another angel or buffer to protect your spells from Mana Leak.

Till next time!

— David Doyle
Twitter: @DavidPDiddle

WB Zombies by Joseph Scalise

When he’s not writing or shooting hoops, Joseph Scalise is usually reading online articles, grinding at PTQs or playing in local FNMs. He would sleeve up White Weenie in every format but sometimes has to settle for other forms of aggro. Most of all, he is just a 21-year-old aspiring screenwriter who spends good chunks of his time on the sunny California coast slinging spells.

Restoration Angel has time and again proved to be one of the best creatures in Standard. The angel teams up with many cards to create nightmares for your opponent, including Geist of St. Traft, Thragtusk, Strangleroot Geist or, more to the point, Geralf’s Messenger. In the right situation, you can take six life from your opponent while dropping a 3/4 flier. But doesn’t Geralf’s Messenger require three swamps while the angel is a white card? How could you possibly intend to cast them in the same deck? Funny you asked …

I don’t consider this a zombie deck. But I called it that because it does run the big three zombies (Geralf’s Messenger, Gravecrawler and Diregraf Ghoul) as well as two components from that deck (Blood Artist and Mortarpod). Messenger is the real all-star, being a very strong target for the angel and the most terrifying creature in the deck.

You almost always want to cast Geralf’s Messenger, which brings us to the manabase. The Evolving Wilds are slow, but they act like Plains four, five and six because the only other way to produce white mana is with four Isolated Chapels. Don’t worry, the mana is not as stretched as you would think. Every white card only requires one white mana.

One of the strongest points about this deck is its different angles of attack. It can act as a very strong aggro deck, but also can be play with a controlling shell, killing off problematic creatures and stalling before winning through attrition with cards like Lingering Souls.

The slew of removal is key. While the package may seem like a lot, it actually is rather necessary. Tragic Slip is the best of the bunch, becoming a one-mana Doom Blade when paired with Mortarpod. The Go For The Throats are for other zombie or black-based decks, while Doom Blade is just a cleanup card. Mortapod turns on morbid triggers and can be chained with Gravecrawler and Geralf]s Messenger, while Blood Artist sits around dealing some extra damage.

All of the sideboard cards are very distinct answers for a specific archetype, usually which should be rather obvious. Cloudshift comes in for aggro decks that have a hard time answering multiple first-striking golems and Messengers that just won’t die. It is also good against control to save your creatures in a pinch. Vile Rebirth is insane against undying creatures as well as Zombies in general, and has really outperformed. Despise comes in for creature-heavy decks, but it’s mainly for Pod and Ramp style archetypes (Note: Always bring it in against ramp … always!).

This deck needs to be played very concisely. The mana curve is packed under four, and there are a lot of cards fighting for slots. One piece of advice when piloting this deck. Know. When. To. Play. Cards. I’m serious. Sometimes you want to Duress your opponent instead of playing a Gravecrawler or Diregraf Ghoul. Sometimes the one-drop is a vastly better choice. This is the reason I love this type of deck. Is it the type of game where you want to linger some souls on Turn 3? Or would Messenger be better? What about playing a Blade Splicer? This deck is a lot more complicated than it originally seems, but is extremely fun to play, quite competitive and is a new twist on an old story.

Until next time, always, always, always, keep turning your guys sideways.

Adios for now,

— Joseph Scalise

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