The 2021 Magic World Championship has come and gone, and the deck I chose to play for the event was Mono-Green Aggro. Overall Mono-Green Aggro didn't perform that well at Worlds, but there are a variety of factors that contributed to that. I still consider it to be one of the best decks in Standard, after having done a lot of preparation for this past weekend.

Mono-Green is the deck that has performed the best on the MTG Arena Ladder and various tournaments outside of Worlds, based on what I have found. The World Championships is never a typical event. The Grixis Lier deck, for example, seemed to be specifically targeting Mono-Green while giving up a bit of equity against Izzet decks.

There were two different Mono-Green lists at Worlds: the one I played, and the one Sam Pardee and Paulo Vitor Damo Da Rosa chose to play. I'm going to talk about the version I chose to play and why I chose the cards I did. This is what I submitted for Worlds:

Magic: The Gathering TCG Deck - Mono-Green Aggro by Seth Manfield

'Mono-Green Aggro' - constructed deck list and prices for the Magic: The Gathering Trading Card Game from TCGplayer Infinite!

Created By: Seth Manfield

Event: World Championship XXVII

Rank: 9th-16th

Standard

Market Price: $270.77

Cards

Snow-Covered Forest

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $1.06

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/230146_200w.jpg

({T}: Add {G}.)

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Kazandu Mammoth

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.20

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/222154_200w.jpg

Landfall — Whenever a land enters the battlefield under your control, Kazandu Mammoth gets +2/+2 until end of turn.

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Faceless Haven

Market Price: $4.89

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/230188_200w.jpg

{T}: Add {C}.
{S}{S}{S}: Faceless Haven becomes a 4/3 creature with vigilance and all creature types until end of turn. It's still a land. ({S} can be paid with one mana from a snow source.)

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Lair of the Hydra

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $2.51

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/243438_200w.jpg

If you control two or more other lands, Lair of the Hydra enters the battlefield tapped.
{T}: Add {G}.
{X}{G}: Until end of turn, Lair of the Hydra becomes an X/X green Hydra creature. It's still a land. X can't be 0.

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Unnatural Growth

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $10.13

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/249563_200w.jpg

At the beginning of each combat, double the power and toughness of each creature you control until end of turn.

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Outland Liberator

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.18

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/248262_200w.jpg

{1}, Sacrifice Outland Liberator: Destroy target artifact or enchantment.
Daybound (If a player casts no spells during their own turn, it becomes night next turn.)

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Lotus Cobra

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $3.06

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/221778_200w.jpg

Landfall — Whenever a land enters the battlefield under your control, add one mana of any color.

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Devouring Tendrils

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.09

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/235989_200w.jpg

Target creature you control deals damage equal to its power to target creature or planeswalker you don't control. When the permanent you don't control dies this turn, you gain 2 life.

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Werewolf Pack Leader

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $7.31

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/243078_200w.jpg

Pack tactics — Whenever Werewolf Pack Leader attacks, if you attacked with creatures with total power 6 or greater this combat, draw a card.
{3}{G}: Until end of turn, Werewolf Pack Leader has base power and toughness 5/3, gains trample, and isn't a Human.

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Snakeskin Veil

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.10

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/230183_200w.jpg

Put a +1/+1 counter on target creature you control. It gains hexproof until end of turn.

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Ashaya, Soul of the Wild

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $7.34

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/221884_200w.jpg

Ashaya, Soul of the Wild's power and toughness are each equal to the number of lands you control.
Nontoken creatures you control are Forest lands in addition to their other types. (They're still affected by summoning sickness.)

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Old-Growth Troll

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.50

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/230123_200w.jpg

Trample
When Old-Growth Troll dies, if it was a creature, return it to the battlefield. It's an Aura enchantment with enchant Forest you control and "Enchanted Forest has '{T}: Add {G}{G}' and '{1}, {T}, Sacrifice this land: Create a tapped 4/4 green Troll Warrior creature token with trample.'"

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Esika's Chariot

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $4.55

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/230173_200w.jpg

When Esika's Chariot enters the battlefield, create two 2/2 green Cat creature tokens.
Whenever Esika's Chariot attacks, create a token that's a copy of target token you control.
Crew 4

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Blizzard Brawl

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.18

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/230208_200w.jpg

Choose target creature you control and target creature you don't control. If you control three or more snow permanents, the creature you control gets +1/+0 and gains indestructible until end of turn. Then those creatures fight each other. (Each deals damage equal to its power to the other.)

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Tangletrap

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.05

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/235998_200w.jpg

Choose one —
• Tangletrap deals 5 damage to target creature with flying.
• Destroy target artifact.

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Ranger Class

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $12.43

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/243348_200w.jpg

(Gain the next level as a sorcery to add its ability.)
When Ranger Class enters the battlefield, create a 2/2 green Wolf creature token.
{1}{G}: Level 2
Whenever you attack, put a +1/+1 counter on target attacking creature.
{3}{G}: Level 3
You may look at the top card of your library any time.
You may cast creature spells from the top of your library.

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Tajuru Blightblade

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.09

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/221848_200w.jpg

Deathtouch

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Inscription of Abundance

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.51

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/222042_200w.jpg

Kicker {2}{G}
Choose one. If this spell was kicked, choose any number instead.
• Put two +1/+1 counters on target creature.
• Target player gains X life, where X is the greatest power among creatures they control.
• Target creature you control fights target creature you don't control.

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Toski, Bearer of Secrets

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $8.64

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/229494_200w.jpg

This spell can't be countered.
Indestructible
Toski, Bearer of Secrets attacks each combat if able.
Whenever a creature you control deals combat damage to a player, draw a card.

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Briarbridge Tracker

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $1.01

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/249533_200w.jpg

Vigilance
When Briarbridge Tracker enters the battlefield, investigate. (Create a colorless Clue artifact token with "{2}, Sacrifice this artifact: Draw a card.")
As long as you control a token, Briarbridge Tracker gets +2/+0.

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Wrenn and Seven

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $25.08

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/249568_200w.jpg

+1: Reveal the top four cards of your library. Put all land cards revealed this way into your hand and the rest into your graveyard.
0: Put any number of land cards from your hand onto the battlefield tapped.
−3: Create a green Treefolk creature token with reach and "This creature's power and toughness are each equal to the number of lands you control."
−8: Return all permanent cards from your graveyard to your hand. You get an emblem with "You have no maximum hand size."

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Tangled Florahedron

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.38

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/221925_200w.jpg

{T}: Add {G}.

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Creatures

Mono-Green Aggro is mostly creatures, so let's talk about those first. I found Jaspera Sentinel to be too low impact, as it does very little on its own. I tried the card of course, because I wanted this deck to have a one-drop like most aggressive decks do.

The other reason for no one-drop creatures is you often play a tapland on turn one. Kazandu Mammoth and Tangled Florahedron allow you to go all the way up 29 lands without flooding out too much. Most versions of Mono-Green have played Kazandu Mammoth because it can be a huge three-mana threat, but I like having the Florahedron as well. Two-drop creatures can be extremely important in Mono-Green Aggro.

Here are the other two-drops. I like having a total of 14 two-drops because you really need to have at least one to start off the game. Having multiple two-drops also isn't a bad thing. There are plenty of games where I lead off on Werewolf Pack Leader, and then the next turn play Lotus Cobra and Ranger Class. Werewolf Pack Leader hits the hardest, so I will typically play that one whenever I want to maximize damage output and potentially draw an additional card.

Ranger Class is a two-drop but also a late game mana sink, so it has a lot of utility as the game progresses, and also helps ensure that you don't flood out. The biggest question mark though is playing Lotus Cobra instead of Sculptor of Winter, or a different two-drop.

I like Lotus Cobra. It can crew Esika's Chariot while making mana. It can attack the opponent while generating mana the same turn. This is especially important against control decks, and with the sideboard plan. It allows you to generate mana the same turn you cast it, so you can cast two two-drops on turn three. There are 29 lands in Mono-Green Aggro, so you hit land drops more reliably than most decks. The cons are that it's not a snow permanent, it's a 1-toughness threat, and if you don't have a land to play it doesn't make mana. Despite those drawbacks, Lotus Cobra is my preferred two-drop in this deck.

These are our three-drops in addition to Kazandu Mammoth. Old-Growth Troll might be the best creature in Mono-Green Aggro, especially against the Izzet decks, because even if it dies to something like Burning Hands you get extra value from it dying. Briarbridge Tracker is mostly a flex slot, as I wanted one more three-drop, but sometimes the clue is relevant in longer games. I didn't try Primal Adversary in this slot, so I'm not actually sure which is better, though I do still lean toward it being Tracker.

Noncreature Spells

Esika's Chariot is the best threat in Mono-Green Aggro. While not technically a creature, it is three different creatures for the price of one that also snowballs when it attacks and makes more creatures. This card is one of the top couple cards in Standard right now, and playing it on turn three is a huge reason to play Mono-Green.

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For Worlds I went with four of these cards total, and a big reason was because I expected to play some mirror matches. These cards allow you to go over the top against other creature decks. Unnatural Growth is slightly better in the mirror, but usually worse against other decks. I would still rather draw one of each card though, so I just hedged a bit and went for a split. However, in a world where Mono-Green isn't as common, you can cut down on the five-drops.

You need to maindeck four of these because of their importance in creature matchups. Killing something for one mana is so good. It does suck that some decks in this format don't have any cheap creatures, which can make Blizzard Brawl essentially useless in game one of certain matchups.

Inscription of Abundance makes life difficult for your opponent, and it's tougher for them to play games knowing you have this card because of all the things it can do. At five mana it's great, so it can also be another swingy five-mana play versus creature decks. However, oftentimes you will cast it for two mana, and if you can put two counters on a creature to save it that is awesome.

Lands

I went with a two-two split on Faceless Haven and Lair of the Hydra. Faceless Haven is a great card, but this deck needs a ton of green mana. I have lost more games to not having the proper mana to cast Old-Growth Troll than to not having Faceless Haven. I found the correct number of Faceless Haven to be between two and three copies, and I went with two.

That's the maindeck! This is still a reasonable maindeck going forward, as most events still have an adequate number of creature decks for Mono-Green to stomp all over. You can add Snakeskin Veil to the maindeck, and I kind of wish I did have at least one copy main for Worlds because of the high density of Izzet decks. Trimming a five-drop for a Snakeskin Veil main is quite reasonable, though after sideboarding I still don't want to have more than two copies in my deck.

Sideboard Guide

Vs. The Mirror

On the Play

On the Draw

Since the mirror is such an important matchup, you have cards in the sideboard that are really only for being on the draw. Tajuru Blightblade is much better at stopping you from getting run over than t putting pressure on the opponent. On the draw, blocking is more important, so that's when I want it in the deck. Similarly, Unnatural Growth is only a game-one card.

After sideboarding, games tend to be more removal-based and your opponent will likely also have access to Outland Liberator. Since the deck does play 29 lands, I think boarding out one on the draw is okay. Ashaya, Soul of the Wild is essentially a swap for Unnatural Growth. It is a super powerful creature in the mirror, as it's usually large enough that it doesn't die to fight effects. It provides extra mana as well, so I decided it was worth playing one.

Vs. Izzet Epiphany

Izzet Epiphany decks typically have no creatures game one, and then side in some Dragons and Eggs for games two and three. If this is the case, Tangletrap is the removal spell you want.

I'm surprised more people haven't been playing Toski, Bearer of Secrets. The card puts a ton of pressure on the opponent, and makes cards like Burn Down the House much worse against you. Toski can be too slow if your opponent finds a very quick combo draw to take multiple extra turns, but that is always going to be tough to beat. You are the aggressor here, and you want to put on as much early pressure as possible.

Vs. Izzet Dragons

Against the Izzet Dragons deck that plays four copies of Smoldering Egg and four copies of Goldspan Dragon, your removal is very important. Tangletrap is still the best removal here because you don't need to fight the opposing Dragon—you can straight-up kill it regardless of whether you have a creature in play. I also keep in Blizzard Brawl though. Unlike against Izzet Turns, if you are able to keep the Dragons off the board, Alrund's Epiphany alone is not all that scary.

Vs. Mono-White Aggro

After game one, white aggro decks typically board out their flying creatures like Elite Spellbinder in exchange for Brutal Cathar or Skyclave Apparition. You want to have the maximum number of fight spells. The way you lose is by not having removal for cards like Brutal Cathar.

I have found this to be one of the best matchups for Mono-Green, as you just go over the top of what they are doing.

Vs. Temur Midrange

Temur Midrange (which is mostly a Gruul Aggro deck) has impressed me. This is one of the scariest matchups to play because if they have Jaspera Sentinel into Magda, Brazen Outlaw, you fall too far behind on mana. I played against Jean-Emmanuel Depraz in the swiss portion of Worlds, and the games were very close with him essentially topdecking his way to a win, so the matchup can still go in either direction.

You may find it surprising I don't side in the additional fight spells here, but your best removal spell is Tangletrap. You don't want to be too reactive, as establishing your own source of pressure is quite important.

Wrapping Up

The biggest question moving forward is where Mono-Green sits after having a not-so-great performance at Worlds, despite doing well in other events. I don't normally complain about luck, but I feel like a lot of my losses at Worlds were due to missed land drops, not necessarily the deck I was playing. There may be some small changes to the list though as the metagame settles down. For instance, one card I was super happy to have in my sideboard is Tangletrap. I would look into adding the fourth copy if Dragons decks remain super popular after having finished in the top two spots at Worlds.