Good old Gary (Gray Merchant of Asphodel) excited a lot of players when it returned to Standard in Theros Beyond Death. But since the set's release, Nightmare Shepherd has taken over as the black card everyone wants to play.

Besides being an efficient, evasive creature, Nightmare Shepherd gives you additional value from enters-the-battlefield triggers. That means it can enhance almost any strategy you want, depending on the other creatures you put in your deck. Plus, unlike Yarok, the Desecrated, it gives you value off the creatures you played before it on the curve, and its monocolored casting cost is easier to build around.

This week's deck is packed to the brim with creature-based discard effects to force your opponent into topdeck mode as quickly as possible. That wrecks opposing control and midrange strategies, but it's got a different trick against aggro: four maindeck sweepers. After all, you don't care if your creatures die—they'll come right back to haunt your opponent's dreams.

 

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