Aside from the fact that Tulio Jaudy might be on the short list of people who play more Magic Online than me, the other thing that I respect most about him as a player is that he loves to play a good brew. If you don't remember, he ended up winning a PTQ a while back with a UG Flash list that was playing none other than Shambleshark.
The list I'm playing today is one that he ended up taking to the Top 4 of the World Magic Cup Qualifier in Brazil. It has a lot of interesting choices that Chord of Calling benefits from. Let's take a look.
I get the distinct feeling that Chord of Calling is going to be one of the defining cards in the upcoming Standard format. It's simply too powerful not to be. It's a literal tutor that can get any creature in your entire deck and put it directly into play. That last part is absolutely huge. It also lets us cheat on deckbuilding as we're able to include one or two of specific creatures, with our set of Chord of Calling providing us with an additional four copies.
While I have my own feelings on the deck and what I think should and shouldn't be included, let's take a look at how it performs and see what it's capable of.
RUG Chord vs. Bant Chord
RUG Chord vs. Monoblue Devotion
RUG Chord vs. Generator Jund
The deck seemed pretty powerful, and I feel like we could have won that match against Jund had we just drawn a fourth land in five or so turns. After all, we essentially got him to five life. Maybe an end of turn Stoke the Flames would have also been game-winning, as it would have put him to a virtual one life and given us another 1/1 to Deal Damage with.
We awkwardly found ourselves boarding out Goblin Rabblemaster every game unfortunately. I'm sure I'm going to get yelled at by Tulio in the comments for this, but he just seemed too fragile and didn't seem to do very much, despite the trick of being able to make a Goblin during combat, then convoke with it. I would much rather have had more silver bullets. In fact, there were several creatures that I wished the deck had access to.
Arbor Colossus and Stormbreath Dragon were two five-drops that I felt could be useful. Stormbreath Dragon can win games out of nowhere by attacking for four instantly. It could also help potentially turn on Purphoros, God of the Forge, but that's more of a side benefit. Similarly, Arbor Colossus can kill or block an opposing Stormbreath Dragon or Archangel of Thune which could be an incredibly useful trick. Let alone the fact that he's a huge 6/6...
As far as six-drops go, Scuttling Doom Engine can be game winning, but AEtherling was a six-drop that I thought would benefit the deck greatly. It's basically the go-to win condition for control decks, and it allows us to punch through damage and deal with planeswalkers that we might otherwise not be able to. Scuttling Doom Engine is awesome, and the six damage is definitely relevant at times. I wouldn't suggest cutting it, but I would definitely consider supplementing it with an AEtherling.
As far as seven mana goes, Hornet Queen was a creature I was somewhat surprised not to see here. Hornet Queen has kind of been one of the go-to staples for Chord decks as she's an amazing creature to fetch out, providing us six power and five bodies. Unless they have a sweeper, creature combat basically screeches to a halt after the Queen enters the battlefield. If we want to go real deep, we can try a Gruul Ragebeast and "fight" an opposing creature when we enter the battlefield. He can basically kill any creature in Standard right now. We'd have to be careful with our future creatures as they're forced to fight something when they enter the battlefield, but I imagine we should be fine. Heck, it could even lead us to attacking our 2/4s into their 2/4s, then playing another 2/4 to finish theirs off.
Down to a two-drop, Quickling is even a great target for Chord of Calling to help dodge removal on one of our creatures or reset something like our Polukranos, World Eater. It also gives us some power in the air which is great for attacking planeswalkers. Blinking something like a Reclamation Sage or getting a second use out of Izzet Staticaster isn't all that bad either.
The random Izzet Charm also felt a little out of place. I would actually add another creature over it. I love some of the choices that were included in the deck, but I feel like we can go a little deeper, with some of the creatures I've mentioned.
I honestly can't wait until Khans of Tarkir. It's a set focused on some of Magic's absolute favorite color combinations: BUG, RUG, UWR, BWR, and Junk (BWG). These combinations often end up being some of the favorites of deckbuilders (take Junk any UWR deck in Modern or Shardless BUG or RUG Delver in Legacy) and I am drooling to see some of the tools we might get from this set. Stay tuned, because spoilers for the set start next Monday, so be sure to follow us on Facebook for all the updates.
Thanks for reading, and I'll catch you Monday!
Frank Lepore@FrankLepore on TwitterFrankLepore on TwitchTV