I’m Dreaming of a Green Winter

Sometimes when you’re brewing, you strike gold with the first draft of your first list, and that’s exactly what happened here. I knew I wanted to brew a mono-green aggro/devotion deck that could easily abuse [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card]. As I feverishly began scribbling cards down that were reasonable in it, it began to feel more and more like the Dungrove Stompy list that I won a PTQ with, which excited me even further.

[deck title= Dungrove Stompy]
[Creatures]
4 Birds of Paradise
4 Llanowar Elves
4 Strangleroot Geist
4 Dungrove Elder
1 Champion of Lambholt
1 Borderland Ranger
2 Thrun, the Last Troll
3 Phyrexian Metamorph
1 Bellowing Tanglewurm
1 Wolfir Silverheart
1 Thragtusk
1 Acidic Slime
[/Creatures]
[Spells]
4 Green Suns Zenith
4 Rancor
2 Garruk Relentless
[/Spells]
[Land]
23 Forest
[/Land]
[Sideboard]
1 Melira Sylvok Outcast
3 Torpor Orb
2 Dismember
2 Beast Within
2 Crushing Vines
2 Fresh Meat
1 Thragtusk
2 Overrun
[/Sideboard]
[/deck]

There was nothing that could make it quite as consistent as the Dungrove Stompy list that I played, but I felt like I could make up for that with the redundancy of the two-drop slot of [card]Kalonian Tusker[/card] and [card]Swordwise Centaur[/card] to consistently have bigger starts that my opponents. After finishing my brewing articles from the last couple weeks, I acquired all the cards I needed for this deck and ran it through some testing. Without a sideboard, the deck beat Mono-Black Devotion 2-1, but unfortunately went 0-4 against an unorthodox UW Control deck running [card]Archangel of Thune[/card] in the main. Now I knew where I needed to focus my sideboarding strategy, which led me to this:

[deck title= Beast Wars]
[Creatures]
4 Elvish Mystic
4 Experiment One
4 Swordwise Centaur
4 Kalonian Tusker
4 Boon Satyr
4 Reverent Hunter
2 Polukranos, World Eater
3 Nylea, God of the Hunt
[/Creatures]
[Spells]
4 Aspect of Hydra
2 Bow of Nylea
2 Enlarge
[/Spells]
[Land]
3 Mutavault
20 Forest
[/Land]
[Sideboard]
2 Pithing Needle
3 Mistcutter Hydra
2 Plummet
2 Witchstalker
4 Nylea’s Disciple
2 Primeval Bounty
[/Sideboard]
[/deck]

Unfortunately, that was the extent of my testing with the deck before an event at Empire Game Center, which was to be my real testing for a PTQ in North Canton the following week. We got underway and it was announced that there were 81 players, meaning a total of seven rounds with a cut to top eight.

Round 1: B/R Midrange 2-0

Game 1 – I started off pretty quick while he played a couple swamps. On turn three, he finally played a [card]Lifebane Zombie[/card], and I followed it up with a [card]Bow of Nylea[/card]. I proceeded to keep dropping threat after threat, to which he responded by casting a [card]Dreadbore[/card] and an [card]Anger of the Gods[/card], but it wasn’t enough to stop me.

Game 2 – I started off even faster this time, but my opponent did even less this game. He cast a [card]Hero’s Downfall[/card] on turn three and followed it up with a [card]Desecration Demon[/card] on turn four, which I tapped down with a sacrificed [card]Mutvault[/card]. His next turn he was sitting at seven with the [card]Desecration Demon[/card] staring at my board of a 5/5 [card]Reverent Hunter[/card], a [card]Kalonian Tusker[/card], and a 2/2 [card]Experiment One[/card], and he tapped out for a [card]Whip of Erebos[/card] which allowed me to sacrifice the [card]Experiment One[/card] to tap down his [card]Desecration Demon[/card] and end the game.

Sideboarding: From what I saw, I assumed this was  Mono-Black Devotion with red for cards [card]Dreadbore[/card] and [card]Anger of the Gods[/card], so I sideboarded only partially for Mono-Black Devotion.

In:
2 [card]Witchstalker[/card]
2 [card]Primeval Bounty[/card]

Out:
2 [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Enlarge[/card]

Round 2: Bant Control 2-0

Game 1 – I kept a fairly slow hand, but was able to make him one for one me until he ran out of cards and I was left with a couple of fatties to finish him off.

Game 2 – He was able to keep me off balance with a [card]Last Breath[/card] into [card]Kiora, the Crashing Wave[/card] and then [card]Jace, Architect of Thought[/card]. Fortunately, I was able to keep some pressure on and killed his [card]Jace, Architect of Thought[/card] with a [card]Mistcutter Hydra[/card] for one when he decided to use it to draw some cards. Once that happened, I was able to kill [card]Kiora, the Crashing Wave[/card] to free up my big guys and take the match.

Sideboarding: This is my standard plan going in for U/W Control decks, and it seemed to be fine in this matchup as well.

In:
2 [card]Pithing Needle[/card]
3 [card]Mistcutter Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Witchstalker[/card]
2 [card]Primeval Bounty[/card]

Out:
1 [card]Reverent Hunter[/card]
4 [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Bow of Nylea[/card]
2 [card]Enlarge[/card]

Round 3: RUG Devotion 2-1

Game 1 – I opened with a very aggressive start, but he had [card]Turn // Burn[/card] and [card]Cyclonic Rift[/card] to slow me down. That didn’t last for long, as I was eventually able to outmaneuver him with bigger guys.

Game 2 – My sideboard plan really took away from my aggressiveness this game and he was able to assemble a planeswalker army to stall me out. He then cast a [card]Progenitor Mimic[/card] copying my [card]Reverent Hunter[/card] to keep making guys that were too big for me to handle.

Game 3 – I absolutely just ran my opponent over this game, opening on [card]Experiment One[/card] into [card]Kalonian Tusker[/card] into [card]Reverent Hunter[/card] for three (since he cast [card]Turn/Burn[/card] on the [card]Experiment One[/card] during combat) and finishing up with a [card]Polukranos, World Eater[/card] to force the victory.

Sideboarding: I sideboarded like this had more blue than it actually did, and realized it during game two, so I desideboarded and went with the original configuration.

In:
3 [card]Mistcutter Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Witchstalker[/card]

Out:
3 [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Enlarge[/card]

Round 4: R/W Burn 2-1

Game 1 – I knew this opponent was on a red deck going into the match, but didn’t realize it was the full-on burn deck. I started with a bit of a slow hand and he ran out a [card]Young Pyromancer[/card] and then a [card]Chandra’s Phoenix[/card]. I was sitting on lethal damage for him on the next turn when he burned me down to four, untapped, and cast a [card]Warleader’s Helix[/card] to finish me off.

Game 2 – I kept another slow hand, but this time with a [card]Bow of Nylea[/card] and [card]Nylea’s Disciple[/card] to gain back much of the expected life loss. And in the end, it came down to me having [card]Boon Satyr[/card] to flash in and block his [card]Satyr Firedancer[/card], allowing me to live to kill him on the next turn.

Game 3 – This was another slugfest, with me keeping a slower hand full of lifegain. This time it was simply his deck failing him as he hit three lands in a row to not be able to kill me in time.

Sideboarding: I sideboarded under the assumption that my opponent had some bigger stuff that would be slow enough for me to resolve a [card]Primeval Bounty[/card], in game three I took them back out for two [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card].

In:
4 [card]Nylea’s Disciple[/card]
2 [card]Primeval Bounty[/card]

Out:
4 [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Enlarge[/card]

Round 5: R/G Monsters 2-0

Game 1 – I kept a very beefy hand with a lot of [card]Kalonian Tusker[/card]s and [card]Swordwise Centaur[/card]s and was able to run over everything he was throwing in the way.

Game 2 – Now this was a game! He went turn-two double [card]Burning-Tree Emissary[/card] into [card]Sylvan Caryatid[/card], then on turn three played a [card]Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx[/card] to cast a [card]Nessian Wilds Ravager[/card]. I let him choose between a [card]Kalonian Tusker[/card] and [card]Elvish Mystic[/card] to fight, and he chose the [card]Kalonian Tusker[/card]. I ran out a couple more small guys on my turn, to which he followed up with a turn four [card]Sylvan Primordial[/card] blowing up one of my [card]Mutavaults[/card]. I then cast another creature into an 8/8 [card]Reverent Hunter[/card] to stonewall his big guys for a while. I eventually cast a [card]Polukranos, World Eater[/card] and he followed up with his own. He activated monstrosity for seven to try to kill mine, only to have me cast [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card] to kill his instead. From there, I was able to start attacking with my giant [card]Reverent Hunter[/card], having him lose a lot of ground by repeatedly chump blocking it and eventually losing his big guys to it. He was able to cast another [card]Polukranos, World Eater[/card] to kill off two more guys and block and kill my [card]Reverent Hunter[/card], but at that point it was too late for him and he was grasping at straws trying to topdeck anything relevant to no avail.

Sideboarding: I pretended to sideboard, and even shuffled a few cards in and took them back out. There were no cards in my sideboard that I really wanted against this deck, the main was already pretty well setup for this match.

Round 6: Mono Black Devotion 0-0-3

I.D.

Round 7: Mono Black Devotion 0-0-3

I.D.

Top 8 Quarterfinals: Bant Control 1-2

Game 1 – I kept a very aggressive hand, and his only piece of interaction was a [card]Last Breath[/card]. He was unable to find a [card]Supreme Verdict[/card] to keep from dying.

Game 2 – I had an awkward hand with multiple [card]Swordwise Centaur[/card] that he was able to neuter with a [card]Detention Sphere[/card] and a couple [card]Supreme Verdict[/card]s. Once I did find some more creatures, he had already cast [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card] to lock me out of the game.

Game 3 – I kept a hand of [card]Forest[/card], [card]Experiment One[/card], [card]Elvish Mystic[/card], [card]Swordwise Centaur[/card], [card]Swordwise Centaur[/card], and [card]Boon Satyr[/card] and opened on the [card]Experiment One[/card]. hoping to hit a [card]Forest[/card] to really get aggressive. Instead, I missed my land drop and played the [card]Elvish Mystic[/card], which promptly took its [card]Last Breath[/card]. I did draw a [card]Forest[/card] on my next turn and cast a [card]Swordwise Centaur[/card] so I could get in for two. He had another [card]Last Breath[/card] for my 2/2 [card]Experiment One[/card]. I then cast another [card]Swordwise Centaur[/card], getting them both [card]Detention Sphere[/card]d. His next turn, he cast a [card]Brimaz, King of Oreskos[/card], which I couldn’t get past. It eventually killed me.

Sideboarding: I sideboarded the same as I did earlier with the other Bant Control deck. I still feel like this was the right way to sideboard against this deck, but I may want something other than [card]Primeval Bounty[/card].

In:
2 [card]Pithing Needle[/card]
3 [card]Mistcutter Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Witchstalker[/card]
2 [card]Primeval Bounty[/card]

Out:
1 [card]Reverent Hunter[/card]
4 [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Bow of Nylea[/card]
2 [card]Enlarge[/card]

The rest of the top eight consisted of two Bant Control, three Mono-Black Devotion, one Esper Control, and one Mono-Blue Devotion.

I decided that I needed two better sideboard cards to replace [card]Primeval Bounty[/card] against the U/W/x decks, and since the card I really needed to deal with was [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card], I decided on a [card]Bramblecrush[/card] and an additional [card]Pithing Needle[/card]. With those changes, I unleashed the deck upon an unsuspecting PTQ.

Round 1: U/G Biovisionary 2-0

Game 1 – This was a pretty straightforward game of me putting more pressure on than he could handle, but it did take longer because he was able to generate a ton of chump blockers. I was able to clinch it with an [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card] to end the game before his [card]Progenitor Mimic[/card] could spit out any extra [card]Biovisionary[/card]s.

Game 2 – I started with some early pressure again, but walked into an [card]Aetherize[/card], which was unexpected. I was quickly able to recover and end the game before he was able to find any more shenanigans.

Sideboarding: He got real excited talking about how many cards he was boarding in, so I correctly put him on boarding in a bunch of bounce spells and counterspells.

In:
3 [card]Mistcutter Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Witchstalker[/card]

Out:
3 [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Enlarge[/card]

Round 2: Mono-Black Devotion 2-0

Game 1 – I opened on my most aggressive start possible with a turn-one [card]Experiment One[/card], a turn-two [card]Krosan Tusker[/card], and a turn-three [card]Boon Satyr[/card]. All he was able to muster up was a [card]Pack Rat[/card] and a couple of removal spells that came far too late to be useful.

Game 2 – I had another opening close to the one from game one, but this time he got stuck on [card]Swamp[/card], [card]Mutavault[/card], and a [card]Pack Rat[/card] for the whole game. He was unable to interact at all.

Sideboarding:

In:
2 [card]Plummet[/card]
2 [card]Witchstalker[/card]

Out:
2 [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Enlarge[/card]

Round 3: R/G Monsters 2-0

Game 1 – I opened on [card]Experiment One[/card] and quickly made it a 2/2 to get in some damage, but my opponent was able to hide behind a turn-two [card]Courser of Kruphix[/card] for a couple of turns until I cast [card]Enlarge[/card] to run over his guys. It was another couple of turns and the second [card]Enlarge[/card] that sealed the victory.

Game 2 – He was able to get up a double-[card]Courser of Kruphix[/card] wall very early, but I managed to get another [card]Enlarge[/card] to remove the road blocks. Unfortunately, he was able to hit his big guys, keeping me at bay. I eventually hit [card]Bow of Nylea[/card] plus [card]Nylea, God of the Hunt[/card] to get through for lethal. He tried to deactivate Nylea by activating monstrous on [card]Polukranos, World Eater[/card] in an attempt to kill my [card]Elvish Mystic[/card], only to get the hydra killed by an [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card] pumping the elf.

Sideboarding: I have no relevant cards to sideboard against this matchup.

Round 4: R/G Monsters 2-1

Game 1 – I was able to outmaneuver his slow start, but his army eventually grew large enough to keep me at bay. I finally drew an [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card] to deal the final points of damage.

Game 2 – I kept an awkward hand of two [card]Forest[/card],s two [card]Experiment One[/card]s, two [card]Elvish Mystic[/card]s, and a [card]Nylea, God of the Hunt[/card], figuring that I would draw some big guys to evolve the [card]Experiment One[/card]s. But I drew mostly [card]Forest[/card]s and got blown out by his turn-four [card]Mizzium Mortars[/card]. I was unable to recover.

Game 3 – I had a super aggressive start again with [card]Experiment One[/card] into [card]Kalonian Tusker[/card] into [card]Reverent Hunter[/card]. He played a couple of blockers, but it was over before it began for him.

Sideboarding: I have no relevant cards to sideboard against this matchup.

Round 5: G/W Aggro 2-1

Game 1 – I opened quickly again, but he kept pouring the blockers in the way. In the end it came down to me mowing stuff down with a giant [card]Reverent Hunter[/card] that gained trample from [card]Nylea, God of the Hunt[/card], despite his [card]Ajani, Caller of the Pride[/card], buffing his already-big guys each turn.

Game 2 – This game started in my favor until he slammed down guys way bigger than mine for three turns, I finally got him into a stalemate when he hit a [card]Brave the Elements[/card] to kill me on the spot.

Game 3 – We both mulliganed, and instead of going to five, I kept a one-land hand that was bonkers when I hit a second land. This game was quickly over when I hit my second land off the top to cast a [card]Swordwise Centaur[/card] evolving [card]Experiment One[/card] and he was unable to find a second land. I followed up with two more [card]Swordwise Centaur[/card] to ensure he had no outs, and he hit a second [card]Forest[/card], but was still unable to do anything.

Sideboarding: I have no relevant cards to sideboard against this matchup.

Round 6: Bant Control 2-1

Game 1 – I opened pretty aggressively, but he had all the right cards. I did get him as low as eight life before he clinched the game with an [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card] to keep me from ever getting in again.

Game 2 – I opened a little less aggressively, but with an awkward draw for him to play against. I put him of the backfoot and then cast a [card]Pithing Needle[/card], naming the only card that beats me in this situation… [card]Kiora, the Crashing Wave[/card]. After the match, I found out that he did in fact have the [card]Kiora, the Crashing Wave[/card] in hand.

Game 3 – I opened super aggressively and put an early [card]Pithing Needle[/card] on [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card] so he would have to deal with it if he ever wanted to use her. Doing this allowed me to resolve a [card]Nylea, God of the Hunt[/card], which he had to [card]Detention Sphere[/card], allowing me to cast a second one. He had to [card]Detention Sphere[/card] the second one as well, keeping him from using any of his card-draw spells. He ended up missing a land drop because of the lack of filtering, and then drew a scry land the next turn, leaving him dead because he couldn’t cast his [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card].

Sideboarding:

In:
3 [card]Mistcutter Hydra[/card]
3 [card]Pithing Needle[/card]
2 [card]Witchstalker[/card]
1 [card]Bramblecrush[/card]

Out:
4 [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Bow of Nylea[/card]
1 [card]Reverent Hunter[/card]
2 [card]Enlarge[/card]

Round 7: B/W Midrange 0-0-3

I.D.

Round 8: Mono Black Devotion 0-0-3

I.D.

Top 8 Quarterfinals: Mono Black Devotion 1-2

Game 1 – I mulliganed to six, and kept a fairly mediocre hand. I was punished pretty quickly for it as my opponent had turn-one and turn-three [card]Thoughtseize[/card] backed by turn-four and -five [card]Desecration Demon[/card]s
to finish me off.

Game 2 – I kept a fairly fast hand, and was able to outpace him while he tried to get advantage with a [card]Nightveil Specter[/card]. He ended up casting a [card]Desecration Demon[/card], and I locked it down to swing for the win.

Game 3 – I kept a pretty awful hand of four [card]Forest[/card], [card]Plummet[/card], [card]Bow of Nylea[/card], and a [card]Nylea, God of the Hunt[/card], thinking I could attack him from a different angle. Unfortunately, he took my [card]Plummet[/card] with a [card]Thoughtseize[/card] and I drew four more [card]Forest[/card]s and another [card]Nylea, God of the Hunt[/card] as five of my next six draws. He quickly destroyed me with two [card]Desecration Demon[/card]s while I was unable to do anything.

Sideboarding:

In:
2 [card]Plummet[/card]
2 [card]Witchstalker[/card]

Out:
2 [card]Aspect of Hydra[/card]
2 [card]Enlarge[/card]

I was once again very happy with my deck. There were quite a few people in absolute shock that a mono-green deck was doing well, including some of my friends. As far as any further changes to the deck, after a combined record of 11-2-4 across two tournaments, I think I’ve nailed down the optimal build for now.

I would recommend this deck to anyone looking to get into Standard fairly cheaply, as the [card]Mutavault[/card]s are the only cards worth more than $10 currently, and they’re not absolutely necessary if you just want to have fun.

As always, if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them for me and I will try to get back to everyone.

Thanks for reading,

Josh Milliken

@joshuamilliken

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37 comments on I’m Dreaming of a Green Winter

  1. Stephen says:

    Thanks for the tourney reports and sideboarding plans.
    I played this deck for FNM and then in a local higher stakes top 8 event on Saturday.

    I played your exact list Friday. I lost one match in the 4th round when I mulled to 4 before seeing my first forest then lost because of oversideboarding plus flooding in game 2. That was good for 3rd place.

    I made a few changes for Saturday
    +1 Polukranos / -1 Enlarge because Polu is always awesome and one of the few ways to interact and enlarge is a card I kept drawing both of on Friday and almost losing because it was uncastable for a few turns.
    +1 Gyre sage / -1 Swordwise Centaur because with the low land count I was having a bit of trouble sometimes having too many 4 drops and not enough mana. Giving up the 1 devotion felt fair for gaining a card that ramps hard and does a pretty good Goyf impression in this list. I’ll probably go to a 2/2 split on these two cards or just go with all gyre sages.
    +1 witchstalker / -1 Reverent Hunter. this was a meta call as I knew several of the top players would be on black or w/u control, but I still think it was a mistake. reverent hunters get really big in this list.
    +1 nykthos / -1 mutavault again trying to make the late game mana a bit more consistent, but with mutavault being a key card against w/u control and probably going to 2 or more gyre sages, I’ll be back to the 3 mutavaults.

    SB change was 1 tower defense over 1 plummet. I found a foil of this card at the shop I was playing and realized that in addition to doing what plummet does, it also is awesome against Anger of the gods, mizzium mortars and almost every other card in decks running stormbreath. its also a total blowout to blue when they get their aggro flyers start. I will definitely be playing 2 of these in the SB over the plummets.

    I ended up going 4-1 with deck only losing to a particularly tough u/w control list in 3, and splitting top 4 after winning the first round of top 8.
    It was particularly satisfying to cast bramblecrush, enlarge and tower defense all in a deciding game 3 win.

    Looking forward to casting more aspect of hydra FTW.

    1. Josh says:

      The problem with Tower defense is that it doesn’t do what Plummet does. Plummet just wants to get the flyer out of the way so you can get all your guys in for damage.

      The big problem with Nykthos is that for it to be any good you already have to be in a winning position as you will have roughly 4 creatures in play already.

      Enlarge is really good game 1 against everything except Mono Black Devotion and U/W Control, and you can still blow them out with it once they tap out. It is essentially a huge removal spell most of the time though as r/g monsters can put up a lot of walls.

      Gyre Sage is probably a bad idea, as you don’t really want to set stuff up, you just want to apply pressure as quickly as possible to make then stumble so you can finish them off.

      The thing everyone keeps losing sight of about with this deck is that it doesn’t want to ramp, it wants to hit its cards on a curve.

      1. Stephen says:

        My reasoning for adding gyre sage and nykthos and dropping an enlarge was that i wasn’t hitting my 4 drops and enlarge on curve. I didn’t love the nykthos, but with the low land count, gyre sage was a very flexible threat that was very helpful when stuck on mana. I only ran one, but it was amazing every game I had it, mostly as a bigger body than swordwise centaur, and occasionally as a crucial mana source. Gyre sage is very similar to tarmogoyf in this list.

        Enlarge was amazing against gruul monsters and I’d like to find room for the second one, but Polukranos is amazing in every matchup and I won’t play less than 3.

        I am not sure why you are playing plummet if it is only for clearing blockers. Do you use it in any matchup other than mono black and if not is demon that much of a road block that you need 2 narrow removal spells in your deck to answer it?

        1. Josh says:

          Desecration Demon is pretty much the only way Mono Black creeps into the game outside of an all removal draw. You would rather not have to sacrifice creatures to push your damage through while risking a crackback of lethal the next turn.

  2. Josh says:

    I’m going to post some of the questions I’m getting other places, and my replies to them. So check back periodically for updates.

  3. Josh says:

    ablarga on Reddit asked

    “Why no coursers?”

    Courser of Kruphix just doesn’t do what the deck wants to do. It’s slow, and doesn’t attack for much, plus it competes for the already packed 3-drop slot.

  4. Josh says:

    Jon Welsh on Facebook asked

    “Josh, what are your opinions and a white splash in the monogreen deck for Fleecemane Lion over Swordwise Centaur and Unflinching Courage (or Selesnya Charm) over Enlarge?”

    It would make it too inconsistent. It would not help the matchup it actually needs help with in U/W Control. If I were going to splash it would be black for stuff like Golgari Charm and Thoughtseize.

  5. towndrunk says:

    I have been playing with a simllier list but i have rangers guile instead of bow ehat do u think of putting thrm in the side deck for removle heavy match up

    1. Josh says:

      I’ve considered them, but the most removal heavy deck in the format is Mono Black Devotion, and that matchup really doesn’t need anymore help.

      1. Stephen says:

        I was considering mending touch because I knew I would probably have to play against a u/w deck with 6 sweeper, but it ultimately didn’t make the cut because it is so narrow.

        1. Josh says:

          If I were going to run an anit-sweeper card it would be Golgari Charm. I will likely give it a try at some point.

      2. towndrunk says:

        Can allos stop a detion spear and azu charm from putting some thing back on top

        1. Josh says:

          That’s very true, but when U/W has to one for one you your cards are way better and you come out on top. Golgari Charm also gets rid of Detention Spheres and regenerates your guys from Supreme Verdict.

          1. towndrunk says:

            Tru and sashing black can all so give u everhones favort troll varolz scavenging all those 3 power guys seems like a lot of funi was just trying to keep it in the shell of mono green. But yes i think splashing b sould be strong

  6. Josh says:

    For those wondering, sideboarding against Mono Blue Devotion is as follows

    In:
    3 Mistcutter Hydra

    Out:
    1 Aspect of Hydra
    2 Enlarge

  7. Josh says:

    Brian Brown on Facebook asked

    “Just curious did you ever test with hero of leina tower in the mystic spot? I haven’t tried it yet so it could be utter crap, but your playing 6 pump spells and possible boonsatyr heroic triggers. The mystic seems like he will more than likely be swinging turn 2 anyway. Turn 2 you’ll more than likely be playing one of your two drops. Also i know your going for devotion but did you try any scavenging oozes main?”

    I wanted to make it as consistent as possible, and with only 10 pump spells the Hero of Leina Tower is far worse than Elvish Mystic since you generally have to tap out for 6 of the 10. Scavenging ooze is a card I gave a brief consideration until I realized that it will almost always be a 2/2 for 2 since this deck is the aggressor, and can’t really afford the extra mana to activate it for minimal gain anyways.

  8. Adam says:

    Hey Josh thanks for the Beast Wars deck idea and for sharing your experience playing it. I am going to build the deck and try it out at my local store’s Game Day this Saturday…I’ll let you know how it goes!
    I am wondering what you don’t include a Garruk, Caller of the Beasts in the deck?
    And do you think it would be okay to add a couple Nykthos, Shrine of Nyx?
    Thanks!

    1. Josh says:

      Garruk, Caller of Beasts cost a little too much, and doesn’t help any of the matchups it should because of that.

      And as I already said about Nykthos above: “The big problem with Nykthos is that for it to be any good you already have to be in a winning position as you will have roughly 4 creatures in play already.”

      Unravel the Aether is normally a decent sideboard card, but there’s just not room or a reason to care about enchantments with this deck. It was a consideration at one point, but I discovered it just wasn’t needed.

      1. Adam says:

        Thanks for the quick reply Josh,

        I guess if a particular enchantment is causing problems then the Pitching Needle would take car of it games 2 & 3.
        I’m excited to give the deck a try and was just wondering about those 3 things (sorry I missed your previous Nykthos comment).

        May all your creatures be monstrous,
        Adam

  9. Adam says:

    Hey Josh thanks for the Beast Wars deck idea and for sharing your experience playing it. I am going to build the deck and try it out at my local store’s Game Day this Saturday…I’ll let you know how it goes!
    I am wondering what you don’t include a Garruk, Caller of the Beasts in the deck?
    What about a couple Unravel the Æther in the sideboard?
    And do you think it would be okay to add a couple Nykthos, Shrine of Nyx?
    Thanks!

  10. Josh says:

    I’ve made some changes that I’m testing out

    -6 Forest
    +4 Overgrown Tom
    +2 Golgari Guildgate

    SB
    3 Mistcutter Hydra
    3 Thoughtseize
    3 Golgari Charm
    3 Ultimate Price
    3 Nylea’s Disciple

  11. Stephen says:

    Played 2 PTQ and one gameday event with my take on this list last weekend. 265 player Seattle PTQ on Saturday I lost in the second round then rattled off 8 straight, not losing again until the top 8 semis. 158 player Sunday PTQ in Corvallis, I went 4-2, then dropped and played in an on-site gameday side event. Started 3-0, scooped to my friend in round 4 then drew into top 8 were I ran the table. Weekend record: 19-4.

    I only lost to mono-white agro, a super greedy green/blue/black devotion deck that would never beat a control deck, and Naya midrange twice. I felt like I had horrible draws and they had nut draws in most of my losses.

    I actually really like the w/b control matchup. Won every time, even through triple verdict one game.

    1. Josh says:

      Sweet, that’s good to hear. I was unable to repeat my success the past two weekends, mostly because everyone I lost to knew what I was playing. I made the changes above to better deal with a resurgence of Mono Blue Devotion and Control. I did sweep Game Day, splitting in the finals, but winning anyways. Next stop with this deck is hopefully GP Cincinnati.

      1. Stephen says:

        The best change I made was dropping Reverent Hunter entirely, I also dropped 1 enlarge and 1 swordwise and played 2 gyre sage, 2 renegade krasis, and 4 Polukranos.

        sideboard change was playing tower defense over plummet. A number of times it saved my board from mortars and it is a blowout against mono blue’s most aggressive starts.

        1. Stephen says:

          Top 8ed a second ptq with this shell last weekend. Josh, I’m planning on hitting gp cincy and would like to talk to you about the list. The email link at the bottom of the article isn’t working for me, though.

          1. Josh says:

            My email is joshmilliken2001 at yahoo.com

          2. Anonymous says:

            What does your current list look like?

            1. Josh says:

              Like this

              -6 Forest
              +4 Overgrown Tom
              +2 Golgari Guildgate

              SB
              3 Mistcutter Hydra
              3 Thoughtseize
              3 Golgari Charm
              3 Ultimate Price
              3 Nylea’s Disciple

              1. Anonymous says:

                What about you Stephen?

  12. Ultra_Magnus says:

    I lost the final of Game Day with this list (it is a bit more old school stompy with more pump):
    ______________
    Stompy Devotion

    21 Forest

    4 Elvish Mystic
    4 Swordwise Centaur
    4 Kalonian Tusker
    4 Witchstalker
    4 Reverent Hunter
    4 Deadbridge Goliath

    4 Giant Growth
    4 Aspect of Hydra
    4 Ranger’s Guile
    3 Fleetfeather Sandals
    _________
    Sideboard

    4 Unravel the Aether
    4 Skylasher
    2 Plummet
    2 Pit Fight
    2 Mending Touch
    1 Pithing Needle

    If only we had Rancor as there are no low cmc replacements at this point. I would be happy with a reprint of Predator’s Strike or even Unnatural Predation. I have been trying Fleetfeather Sandals as a bad Rancor replacement, instead of the higher cmc ways through like Nylea, God of the Hunt, Chorus of Might or Enlarge. Flying and haste are a good combination and you can throw it out there cheap, then it tends to stick around and give you a way through for the Aspect of Hydra/Giant Growth pump win.

    I am really enjoying this deck, but I am missing Rancor … sob … sob.

  13. Anonymous says:

    How’d the GP go for everyone?

    1. Josh says:

      I went 6-3 losing to pretty bad draws against Mono Black Devotion twice in a row(I mulliganed to 4 game 1, and mulliganed 3 other games in those 2 matches) and had a couple awkward draws against R/W Burn to get knocked out.

  14. Josh says:

    Current list

    Creatures (29)

    4 Elvish Mystic
    4 Experiment One
    4 Swordwise Centaur
    4 Kalonian Tusker
    4 Boon Satyr
    4 Reverent Hunter
    2 Polukranos, World Eater
    3 Nylea, God of the Hunt

    Spells (8)

    4 Aspect of Hydra
    2 Bow of Nylea
    2 Ultimate Price

    Land (23)

    3 Mutavault
    20 Forest

    Sideboard (15)

    3 Thoughtseize
    3 Mistcutter Hydra
    3 Golgari Charm
    2 Doom Blade
    3 Nylea’s Disciple
    1 Ultimate Price

    1. Josh says:

      Sorry, lands are

      Land (23)

      3 Mutavault
      4 Overgrown Tomb
      2 Golgari Guildgate
      14 Forest

  15. Stephen says:

    Just won an 84 person top 8 standard premier event on MTGO yesterday with the little green guys. went 4-0 against esper. I think there was another mono green deck in the top 8 also. I’m convinced this is the best deck in the format.

    1. Balda says:

      Hi! Stephen i was wondering how do you sb vs mono blue dev, only the hydras? Domestication and claustrophobia has been a pain for me, so i find myself wanting some defense against that. Perhaps the Ranger’s Guile? I see you play tower defense, but i feel like i rather be on the offensive on this match. Please give me some thoughts, ty in advance :)

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