This Red/Green Primeval Titan/Scapeshift deck (Titanshift) has been gaining popularity even after its initial breakout, which is an indicator that it is actually a very strong deck and not just a flash in the pan.

If you're unfamiliar, the deck revolves around Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle, as well as Primeval Titan and Scapeshift. It is a surprisingly consistent deck that is able to win on turn five or six a lot of games, which means the only issue is finding a way to survive until then. Since the deck isn't one of the faster decks in the format it is necessary to play some reactive cards to compensate, like Lightning Bolt and Anger of the Gods. Here is the list of Magic Online player Tikiman89, which is what I played:

Both the maindeck and sideboard are very similar to other lists that have been doing well recently. Through the Breach is a card that this version opts not to play, and I believe the deck is more consistent as a result. Playing Through the Breach instead of Scapeshift could possibly make the deck slightly more powerful since there is the possibility of getting Primeval Titan into play on turn three, but there will also be times Through the Breach is in hand without a Primeval Titan and then it does very little. Playing 10 win conditions rather than essentially six or seven in the version with Through the Breach is a dramatic difference.

One of the draws to playing Scapeshift is its good matchups against midrange strategies. To fight back, those decks may try to win by causing you to discard a key spell, but by having four Scapeshifts alongside the Primeval Titans it makes life much more difficult for the player on the Thoughtseize side of the matchup. There were multiple games where we won with Scapeshift while still having a backup copy left in hand. The Red/Green Scapeshift deck played out pretty well, but the loss to Blue/Black Mill definitely was a surprise.

Blue/Black Mill is not a deck one gets to see in action too often, but it was actually very impressive. Game One we were basically left helpless as most of our deck was gone before our opponents third turn. Glimpse the Unthinkable followed by multiple Archive Traps has a way of doing that. The matchup played out in a fashion that even if our entire deck wasn't gone it was still important to think about how many Mountains were left. This definitely didn't feel like a good matchup for Scapeshift, though it is not a deck I would expect to face that often.

The other matches went much more smoothly against Blue Tron and the Kiki Vengeance deck respectively. Tron is a pretty good matchup as long as they don't get an early Karn Liberated or Sundering Titan down. The first game our opponent did play Sundering Titan while also having countermagic to back it up, but it also felt like our draws were much better in the other two games. Regular Goryo's Vengeance is not a good matchup for Scapeshift as they tend to be able to win a bit faster. However, this take on the deck seemed a bit more clunky, and their draws didn't line up that well against ours. It was a little silly seeing our opponent run spells into the Chalice of the Voids we had in play, but that is a thing that can happen, and they definitely helped swing the matchup.

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Red/Green Scapeshift is not just the new flavor of the month; it will be sticking around for a while. This deck has game against more or less every strategy in the format while also being one of the most consistent combo decks. In addition, this is a fairly straightforward deck to pick up without a ton of experience with it. Cards that punish shuffling or searching our deck are especially good against Scapeshift, as we saw with Archive Trap. Also, expect to see land destruction see more play as Fulminator Mage is regaining more traction as a sideboard option.

Thanks for reading,

Seth Manfield