5 Very Promising The Lost Caverns of Ixalan Decks from Early Access
The Lost Caverns of Ixalan seems to be on its way to becoming a significantly fun set to play in terms of options, with sheer diversity for many viable MTG decks that it seems to showcase. Like, seriously, the variety is more than enough, that so long as it is not another Dinosaur deck, you can expect some surprising gimmick or two that would immediately impress, if not statistically annoy.
And so, we’ve gathered a preliminary list of MTG deck brews for The Lost Caverns of Ixalan early-access for Standard. The concepts may not be fully formed just yet, but the ideas are already more than enough to make you think about their actual use when the set officially releases next week.
Turn-Three Ob Nixilis Ultimate
The bread-and-butter combo of this deck circulates aroundand . The idea is simple. Curve naturally with a 2-mana 8/8 on turn two, and then cast your planeswalker with its Casualty ability. If successful, you now have a copy of Ob Nixilis that can use its ultimate immediately for various objectives:
- The first one is pure card advantage. You only need to target yourself with it, and draw as much as the effect provides.
- The second is a finisher. Perhaps after a few turns getting a Devil token into play, you deal a total of nine damage for a hopeful lethal.
But the most devastating combo of all comes from a third card:. If you manage to do the aforementioned combo with a Sheoldred in play, you not only deal 7 damage to your opponent, but an additional two per card drawn. This means, the combo devastates with an instant 21 damage if you line up these three cards perfectly.
Other than that, you can simply treat the deck as a sort of typical control/midrange Grixis build. Maybe you don’t have The Ancient One in your hand? Then you can instead select a number of generic meta alternatives for Ob Nixilis to use Casualty with. Is the almighty 8/8 stuck without a partner? Maybe you can mill yourself and start manually attacking with it instead.
Not focused enough? Perhaps you can try this alternative instead.
(credit via MTG Malone)
Main 60 cards (22 distinct)
|Instant, Sorcery, Enchantment, Artifact (16)|
Reanimation: Descended Abuelo Style!
Yet another entertaining twist to the ever-consistent reanimation decks that we always run into during Standard games. That’s right, our endgame targets are once again things such asand , and we have returning cards such as . This time, however, we got quite a lot of new toys to play with. The most crucial of which is Brass’s Tunnel-Grinder, which is an absolutely awesome hand-fixing card that not only has inherent scalability, but even has a powerful transformation bonus if you ever get to that point.
Our second card in the new reanimation arsenal would be. Even if you don’t pay X, it is still a very effective 4-mana reanimation card that can take advantage of any late-game ability. Sure, turning them into 1/1 Spirit creatures makes them very vulnerable. But as we have seen with , it only takes a turn or two for things to get out of control with them.
As for reanimation targets, our new choice is the, which can easily snowball into an army of Gnome tokens when left unchecked, and can benefit from the X effect of Abuelo’s Awakening if it is strategically viable.
(credit via Dr Ruckus)
Main 60 cards (20 distinct)
|Instant, Sorcery, Enchantment, Artifact (33)|
Side 12 cards (12 distinct)
Exploration, “effective” exploration, and a bunch of other clutch effects that turn the tide (pun not intended) of the battle depending on your choice of tribal bonuses. Actually, screw that, your solidarity to this Simic Merfolk deck would most of the time simply lie on a few key cards. Its overall gameplay works, mind you. But most of the individual effects do not directly flow into a combo, unless that card specifically affects all Merfolk cards.
In any case, if you are looking for a unified strategy for this early-access brew, it would be the focus onplus the consistent use of all cards that can explore (or provide explore). Accumulate enough assets on the battlefield, and will be an absolute powerhouse that can disrupt both combat-based and ability-focused options of your opponent.
And remember, never hesitate to keep racking up those draws.
(credit via PowrDragn)
Main 61 cards (20 distinct)
|Instant, Sorcery, Enchantment, Artifact (8)|
Just Dinos Being Primal Dinos
And of course, being the premiere tribe of The Lost Caverns of Ixalan, Dinosaurs were significantly beefed up with a lot of new support cards. That is to the point of building Dino decks just for the sake of them being affected by non-Dino components that happen to support them directly. The most interesting of which is probably, which double duties on both sides of the mid-to-late game, functioning as either a mana dork or a defensive bruiser.
That being said, most of these “terrible lizards” still roll with mostly direct synergy. Like,may as well be its own thing, but still benefits from anything generated by the smaller dinosaurs within the deck.
Then we have the obligatory addition of, with their effects being effectively complementary to the effects already provided by the newer dinosaur cards. That, or you have an optional option for the times when they’re not really the wisest manual casting choice. Hmm? Oh and yeah, is somewhere in there as well.
In any case, have fun bashing opponents with these new toys, and maybe you can even tweak some of those choices with other available (older) dinosaurs in mind.
(credit via LegenVD)
Main 60 cards (21 distinct)
|Instant, Sorcery, Enchantment, Artifact (4)|
Gnomes Go Crazy
I always like the cumulative effects that create more creatures that pump even bigger creatures already on the battlefield. It’s a tried and tested concept for many builds, but for this particular deck, it is amusing to see it come from a bunch of simple field-checking permanents.
The easiest one to mention isand , which synergizes with just about any artifact on the deck, but especially works well with a . Then we have and that also check for new permanents, but with simpler mechanics. Together, they form this stupidly simple beatstick combo that immediately creates chump targets and attacks with them before any sweepers come on the next turn.
By the way,in this deck is deceptively good at dampening down aggro plays with its defensive capabilities, while still being able to maintain synergistic value with all the other cards in the deck. Definitely an ace player to help consistently set off any cumulative permanent combos you intend on keeping up.
(credit via Hexamyn)