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How BotherShawn Hit Mythic Under $275

Arena Standard Competitive 
By: BotherShawn - 16 Jul 2019
TL;DR at the end of the article

History of Magic Background:

In 2004 at 10 years, I began playing magic by piloting goblins at summer camp. Seven years later in 2011, I begin to play at Friday Night Magic when Innistrad came out. At that point, I began to play magic a minimum of two times a week for Draft/Standard/Modern. I continued to grind magic until I became a Level One Judge in 2016. Before this, I was already attending a Grand Prix once a quarter playing side events and grinding for tickets. I have begun to stream Magic the Gathering in May of 2019 which begins my journey to mythic. 

May 2019 

I began playing Magic Arena with the same mindset I took to playing Hearthstone and Legacy. 

Thinking about this from a Hearthstone perspective, I wanted to make sure that I collected as many FREE in-game resources (Free Gems, Packs, Cards, Drafts, etc. - Known Arena Codes) and that I collect cards that will last as long as possible. Thinking about this from a Legacy perspective, I wanted to make sure that I collected as many cards that can be used in as many different highly played decks as possible. In this mindset, I began to collect every shock land and check land that was out at the moment. 

Shock Lands: Breeding Poolimage, Godless Shrineimage, Blood Cryptimage, Hallowed Fountainimage, Stomping Groundimage, Watery Graveimage, Steam Vent, Sacred Foundryimage, Temple Gardenimage, and Overgrown Tombimage

Check Lands: Hinterland Harborimage, Isolated Chapelimage, Clifftop Retreatimage, Sulfur Fallsimage, Woodland Cemeteryimage, Dragonskull Summitimage, Drowned Catacombimage, Glacial Fortressimage, Rootbound Cragimage, and Sunpetal Groveimage

Access to these cards would give me a solid foundation of lands to play as many different decks as possible. I then looked at Standard and spoke with some friends about what were the ‘Hot’ cards at the moment and looked at what were the most expensive cards in paper magic that were currently out. These cards were:

image image

I began by looking at what fun decks I could be playing/building: Earlier that year Autumn won with Mono-U Aggro which looked like a ton of fun and easy to build in Arena as it did not have a large amount of rares (5 rares, 31 uncommons, 5 commons, and 19 Islands). 

image image image image

An updated list with M20 for this deck can be found here:

Mono-Blue Aggro

Main 60 cards (14 distinct)
Instant, Sorcery, Enchantment, Artifact (22)
Creature (18)
Land (20)
Side 15 cards (7 distinct)

Simulating MTG Arena Best of 1 starting hand
(Simplified, true algorithm in MTGA not revealed by Wizards yet)

This deck got boring after a while and I wanted to build a fun deck and built, Wilderness Reclamationimage + Expansion // Explosionimage with support from Niv-Mizzet, Parunimage & friends.

image image image 

These two decks ended up getting me up to Gold which I felt was great based on the number of cards I had in my collection. 

June 2019

After only getting gold at the end of the month I wanted to be able to try for the next tier to platinum. I looked at what the most popular decks in paper standard were and at the time they were Mono-Red Aggro and Esper Control. 

I normally play a deck with blue in it (coming from Modern Merfolk). With a ton of rare wildcards (30 something to be exact), I purchased the entire esper control list and was ready to play best of one. After a ~50% win rate I was feeling stuck again and wanted to rank up. I knew that I could play mono-red and began purchasing all of the cards for it. I tried to purchase everything that was either ‘required for the deck’ or ‘evergreen’ (meaning that I could use it in other decks and not just this one). Short of 8 rares, I began to play a modified version playing Guttersnipeimage over Goblin Chainwhirlerimage and some amount of Electrostatic Fieldimage to have my spells deal extra damage where my creatures could not. Approaching the end of June, I was feeling super defeated not being able to get out of gold for another month. I took a hard look at my collection thus far and thought about what I could do to give it a significant boost. Just that same day the $50 for 50 pack sale popped up for M20. This was the perfect way to get some assortment of 50 rares/mythics and some assortment of at least 8 rare/mythic wildcards which would be perfect to build any new deck for standard. 

Updated Mono Red List:

Mono-Red Aggro

Main 60 cards (12 distinct)
Creature (24)
Instant, Sorcery, Enchantment, Artifact (16)
Land (20)
Side 15 cards (5 distinct)

Simulating MTG Arena Best of 1 starting hand
(Simplified, true algorithm in MTGA not revealed by Wizards yet)

Updated Esper List:

Esper Hero

Main 60 cards (22 distinct)
Instant, Sorcery, Enchantment, Artifact (18)
Planeswalker (6)
Creature (10)
Land (26)
Side 15 cards (8 distinct)

Simulating MTG Arena Best of 1 starting hand
(Simplified, true algorithm in MTGA not revealed by Wizards yet)

Through the past two months, I continued to compete in Best of Three Drafts as much as possible as this was a surefire way to get as many cards from each set as possible. I honestly believe that most of my success the following month came from the ability to 3+/X drafts and gain a ton of cards and wildcards. Doing this allowed me to acquire every card from War of the Spark andRavnica Allegiance without spending a lot of extra money (currently at $255).  

July 2019

Coming into July 2, I wanted to be as prepared as possible to build one deck and bring it from Silver to Mythic. I watched Team Aether Member Ratsrelyk7 who was playing a handful of decks during their Early Access event - Scapeshift, Goblins, Boros, Vampires, Elementals, Golos, Abzand Legenda, Mardu, Artifacts, Dinosaurs, and Leylines. After watching them I felt that either the goblins deck or the dinos deck was the strongest but I felt the lists that he created needed to be more optimized for the meta. At the time I knew that a lot of the best of one meta was going to be Mono-Red decks and control decks so I needed both creatures with toughness that was either four or greater and that could also kill by turn five versus control. A streamer friend of mine who hit mythic the previous month and just started streaming CoachHotDish (and is still working towards affiliate) posted an interesting brew of his. 


I felt that this deck looked really powerful and I was already very close to having all of the cards for the list. I was able to complete the deck after opening my $50/50 booster pack deal which I felt was great coming from hearthstone’s $1/pack release deal. This original deck was great and allowed me to grind from Silver to Platinum with no changes (besides some land configuration) with an 85% win rate. 

The powerhouse of the deck comes from Marauding Raptorimage due to its ability to make our creatures cheaper while also being a great attacker forcing our opponents to block with their Llanowar Elvesimage, Paradise Druidimage, Incubation Druidimage, and/or Leafkin Druidimage unless they want to take a lot of damage. Another breakout star from M20 is Shifting Ceratopsimage which is a huge utility creature for the current standard format.

Once getting to (the rank before mythic) we looked at playing best of three and working on a sideboard for it. My teammates sidetrakisbad, Ratsrelyk7, and I were able to work on CoachHotDish’s original sideboard and come up with….

Red Green Dinos

Main 60 cards (17 distinct)
Creature (26)
Planeswalker (4)
Instant, Sorcery, Enchantment, Artifact (7)
Land (23)
Side 15 cards (6 distinct)

Simulating MTG Arena Best of 1 starting hand
(Simplified, true algorithm in MTGA not revealed by Wizards yet)

Now after playing it a bunch, I think the decklist is very strong but may need some additional tweaks to compete with Esper Control. This is something that I am currently working on and you may see in the future. If you are looking for a fun deck to play and grind with, I would highly suggest playing red-green dinos.


TL;DR How to Get to Mythic without spending millions of dollars:

Month 1: Spend $5 on the entry gem package, begin to draft Bo3 with a win rate of 3+/x or better, and search for all the free arena codes that are live .... Known Arena Codes
Month 2: Spend some amount of money $50-100 to buy gems and continue to draft 3+/X or better to gain packs and wilds
Month 3: Choose a deck that you believe will be strong enough to beat both mono-red (as it’s not going anywhere till October of 2019 - and could stick around after that as a Red/Black Aggro deck) and is able to withstand a board wipe on turn four or five

About BotherShawn:

My name is Shawn and I am a new content creator for AetherHub.com. I have been playing Magic for 15 years. I stream Magic a minimum of two days a week on Friday's & Sundays's from 6:00 PM to Midnight EST.







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Nice and informative article. Thanks!
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