Arena Standard - Mardu Midrange BO1

15 40 12
26 7 4 23
Aggro Midrange
  • Deck contains 4 invalid cards for this format: Dragonskull Summit (XLN), Elenda, the Dusk Rose (RIX), Isolated Chapel (DOM), Clifftop Retreat (DOM)
Main 60 cards (25 distinct)
Creature (26)
Planeswalker (4)
Instant, Sorcery, Enchantment, Artifact (7)
Land (23)

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Damn Fine Midrange

This decklist got me from platinum 3 to diamond 1. It punishes aggro (especially red) by playing tons of low cost critters that interact with both your opponent’s life total and their creatures. Plus it’s excellent at finding sneaky ways to generate life gain. 

It can easily outpace control lists and its removal package decimates superfriends. Put simply, it’s a phenomenal midrange build that is an absolute blast to play.

Stars of the Show

The most explosive card in the list is by far Bolas’s Citadel. Its ability to run away with a game I would have otherwise lost has saved my butt enough that I don’t think it’s ever leaving this list. Most cards in the deck have a real low cmc so it’s really easy to chain together enough permanents to sacrifice 10 for 10 damage. Plus getting a Judith or Cruel Celebrants as part of that ten can easily give you a 20+ damage turn. 

To keep your life total high enough to go off with the citadel Cruel Celebrant is your best friend. It heals you and damages your opponent 1 every time a creature (including tokens) or planeswalker dies. It is a 1/2 but it’s only a two cost and it’s a great blocker against red aggro. Every two drop in the deck is vital actually. Everybody knows Hero of Precinct One by now. Most of the spells in this deck are multicolored and the tokens make great fodder for triggers. Priest of Forgotten Gods has had a resurgence in popularity in lists like this and it’s easy to see why. It removes an opponent’s creature, draws you a card, does 2 damage, and ramps you two black mana for the cost of two creatures. In a deck that already wants to kill its own creatures PotFG is perf. The final two drop is Dreadhorde Butcher and it’s a doozy. It often can outrace cry of the carnarium which is obviously otherwise a big weakness for the deck, and the damage upon its death works great with sacrifice mechanics.

The obvious issue is that all these tiny critters will get nuked with cheap removal, clearing the way for big stompies to beat the stuffing out of you, Teferis to bore you to death, or just a good old fashioned red mage roasting. That’s where the reason for the season comes in: Sorin, Vengeful Bloodlord. This guy is the savior of Mardu lovers everywhere. The lifelink he gives humiliates aggro lists and his ability to rez dreadhorde butchers basically indefinitely gets around basically all DB’s drawback. Sorin is the reason I made this deck and he certainly lives up to the hype.

The honorable mention is a card that most people seem to think is off meta, but that I absolutely love: Elenda, The Dusk Rose. She’s a great red herring for most opponents against low interaction decks she bulks up so fast it’s stupid.

Weaknesses and Edits

Ramp strategies are tough. The deck can usually beat green stompy and most Gruul lists, but any list with Nissa, especially Bant Midrange is a nightmare. Plaguebearer is our biggest walker removal tool and since Nissa automatically protects herself against sacrifice mechanics that basically whiffs. Also her loyalty is so high that it’s really hard to attack her down fast enough to prevent a blowout. If she isn’t ramped and I hit a citadel on curve, or if I immediately topdeck a bedevil I’m safe but otherwise there’s not much the current list can do. 

I also personally despise playing against discard strats so I forfeit a lot of matches against them probably prematurely and don’t really know if the deck can outlast them.

As far as edits, I’m still not sure the mana base is right and I’ll probably find a way to add one more soon. It’s possible that I might replace Elenda with Heroic Reinforcements and I’m also considering more sweepers for Nissa lands. Command the Dreadhorde has been in the deck before and could be again, but likely most of this will go into a sideboard if I go back to BO3 where the deck has struggled against opponents’ adaptive strategies. The next step is dipping my toe back into BO3. I’ll post updated lists as I make ‘em.

Thanks for reading the ramble y’all! I’m Charlotte, hope this is the first of many decklists from me!




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@una red is the best color for removing artifacts and building sideboards that respond to any color has never been easier since M20 dropped. The short answer is yes! I just wanna get my footing a bit more in the new meta and when I do expect to see an update, cuz this is one of my all time faves. What about you? Made any changes besides land?
@una. Wow thanks so much! So I am a slow learner so I take a while to adjust to new metas, so I’ve been doing a lot of netdecking the last couple weeks. The cards that have really scared me off this particular deck of late have been Grafdigger’s Cage and Nissa. Towards the end of the War meta Nissa decks seemed to get more and more popular and this deck had a lot of trouble with her. Grafdiggers shuts down a lot of the deck in a major way. That said there are ways to handle both cards.
I enjoyed this a lot during these weeks! I had a bit of a problem with the lands in the beginning, but when I learnt to deal with 3 colors mana base my winning rate improved considerably. I LOVED to crush those obnoxious mono red, and also Bola's Citadel resulted in a more interesting, rewarding and sexy alternative to Experimental Frenzy (which I was using it before) in the endgame against control. Do you have any plans to update this in the new meta? Keep it up! ♥
@Beethoven: Thanks! I’d love to hear your thoughts/notes. I still feel like there’s more work to do and I wanna keep climbing the ladder. My fave thing is dropping Sorin after they play their big scary critter or planeswalker and pulling a plaguecrafter out of the graveyard 😈
Looks hella fun - i'll give it a try and report back.
Last Updated: 24 Jun 2019
Created: 23 Jun 2019
1020 147 5

Mana Curve
Color Breakdown
Main/Sideboard Rarity Count
15 9 33 3 0
0 0 0 0 0
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