The Great Aurora was definitely a card that piqued my interest when I first saw it spoiled in Magic Origins; I mean, it's a nine mana sorcery that shuffles every permanent and card in hand into their respective decks, only to dole out that same number of cards to each player, putting all lands drawn this way into play for free...whew, that was a mouthful. I didn't even know how I could possibly exploit this card. I just knew that I wanted to.

So imagine my surprise when none other than Kenji Tsumura tweeted about a deck containing the mythic card in response to tweet from fellow Magic Online aficionado Saffron Olive...

@SaffronOlive Thanks for the introduction :) Here is my decklist and yours is almost perfect! Thanks and ggs!

— 津村 健志 (@KenjiTsumura) August 25, 2015

To make things a little clearer, this was the exact decklist in question that was posted by Kenji...


Keep in mind Kenji didn't actually create the list. A Japanese opponent of his did as he mentions in a reply on Twitter, and I would definitely credit him if I had his name. Nevertheless, when a deck with a nine mana sorcery has the endorsement of a Hall of Famer and one of the best players to sleeve up 75 cards, you better believe I'm going to try it out.

Let's see how that worked out for me.

(Videos arranged in a playlist within the player.)

My first question was, in a deck with cards like Bile Blight, Pharika's Cure, Demonic Pact, and Dark Petition, why we didn't have a single Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth in here somewhere. This leads me to believe that, despite our successful record, the deck definitely has some room for improvement. This would also make our Llanowar Wastes a little less painful when we drew them or needed them for black mana, but at that point, all our lands would produce black mana, so forget I said anything!

While we're on the subject of lands, I wasn't 100% sold on all of the lands that entered the battlefield tapped. The reason is that, while you often want to have access to double colors in a deck like this, when we cast The Great Aurora we want as many lands as possible entering the battlefield untapped. So we can Crush our enemies, to see them driven before us, and to hear the lamentations of their women! Often times, though, we would Great Aurora, hit something like eight or ten lands, and only have four of six of them coming into play untapped. Can you imagine the havoc we could cause with ten untapped lands!? I admit that I wouldn't want to cut down on the duals too heavily, but I could definitely see trimming two or so Jungle Hollow perhaps.

All that aside, The Great Aurora was super sweet. People kept asking me how the deck intended to win and it was kind of hard to explain. Sure we have some creatures, and some planeswalkers, but none of them are that huge or deal a tremendous amount of damage. Basically we're the most grindy deck you can possibly be, and the thing we want to do is keep amassing card advantage by chaining multiple The Great Auroras. While our opponents aren't capable of taking advantage of the cards and mana we give them - because they end up being able to only play one spell on the turn after we reset things, or because they're busy casting instants and sorceries while we're putting multiple permanents into play and cards into our hand - we can often play two or more spells before following things up with another The Great Aurora. It all ends up adding up, like cumulative upkeep you see!

One thing that kind of interested me was the inclusion of a Woodland Bellower or two. We could even add a copy of Invasive Species. I mean heck, we already have both Courser of Kruphix in the deck to search out!

This deck just goes to show you that dreams in Standard really can come true! I may or may not have a Modern article on Monday as I'm taking the next few days off due to PAX Prime, but I still might, if I can find the time to play some games for you guys over the weekend. I have a deck in mind, but if you have any unique ideas you've seen performing well, then by all means, toss them my way! In the meantime, be sure and check out my podcast, Freshly Brewed, with Ali Aintrazi and be sure to subscribe through iTunes or help us out over on our Patreon. Thanks for reading and I'll see ya soon!

Frank Lepore
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Freshly Brewed Podcast with Ali Aintrazi (available on iTunes and Stitcher Radio)