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Drafting Green/White


Welcome to another addition of Very Limited. Over the last few weeks, we’ve explored some of the best archetypes for BTT drafting. Knowing how to draft a particular deck gives us confidence that we’re taking the right cards as we go deeper into pack two. Today, we’ll be concluding our series of columns on BTT Draft archetypes by talking about the best aggressive Draft strategy in the format, Green/White.

What Is Our G/W Deck Trying to Do?

G/W comes out swinging and never stops turning sideways thanks to a seemingly endless stream of combat tricks. Decks like this have terminal velocity in most Limited formats; we can steal the game a good portion of the time, but a small hiccup or a reasonable curve from the opponent will usually spell disaster. BTT isn’t most formats, though, and the bestow mechanic allows even the most aggressive archetype to have a lot of strength as we go deeper into the game.

When Should We Be Drafting G/W?

Gods Willing
When we see a green light that green is very open, it’s usually a good sign that the G/W deck is capable of being the 3–0. White offers easy-to-cast tricks that can go around the table pretty late while people are looking to fill out their trick-laden decks with creatures in the second and third packs.

It’s important that we remember to stay open when drafting BTT. Born of the Gods is a much weaker Limited set than Theros, and we’d rather set ourselves up nicely for packs two and three than cross our fingers and hope that everything falls into place. We should focus on remembering what cards we’ve passed more than what cards we’ve taken during our Born of the Gods pack. This information should give us a clearer picture of the decks being played by the players on our left. After the first pack, we should have a mishmash of playable cards and knowledge that we passed very little of one to three colors.

Of course, there are bombs and occasions when we’re able to pick up multiple copies of a cornerstone common or uncommon in the first pack. We can steer our deck in a particular direction to accommodate those picks.

It’s rare that I’m set on a color anywhere in pack one, barring situations in which I open a very good rare and am passed a couple strong, on-color treats to go with it. Sometimes, it’s just there, though. Swordwise Centaur is the worst offender. It’s a great card in this format, it comes down and beats for a lot of damage, and it isn’t blanked by Nyxborn Triton or Felhide Minotaur, like a lot of the 2-drops in the format are. It’s easy to be a big fan of Swordwise Centaur, but it can be harder to accept the implications of taking Swordwise Centaur as high as we should.

Swordwise Centaur
The first Swordwise Centaur we take is like dipping our foot into a pool to test the temperature. The second Swordwise Centaur is basically like diving into the deep end. From that moment forward, we’re probably going to be jamming green very hard. It may seem like a risky proposition, but green is underdrafted right now. Taking Swordwise Centaurs allows us to actually gain value out of card like Aspect of Hydra that will keep jogging around the table looking for a lonely suitor.

I tend to avoid white in this format, but the G/W deck is an exception. We still want the same cards as our fellow white drafters, but the scraps are much better in our deck than they would be in theirs. Why? Well, let’s say we’re R/W, W/B, or W/U: We’re leaning on white for our best creatures in any of these color combinations. Sure, Battlewise Valor is a fine card, but we’d much rather be taking a reasonable, on-color body for our deck. This isn’t an issue for the G/W deck—we’ll still be taking the best heroic and bestow creatures above the tricks, but we’ll be happy to pick up the tricks that our neighbors are forced to pass.

Let’s Talk Pick Orders!

Brimaz, King of Oreskos
Let’s take a look at G/W in Born of the Gods! We’ll start with the best cards we could possibly open and go all the way down to cards that are acceptable, albeit not good, as main-deck inclusions for the G/W deck.

Scourge of Skola Veil

To Recap

Eidolon of Countless Battles
Best rares:

Best uncommons:

Best commons:

Now We’ll Take a Look at Theros!

Elspeth, Sun's Champion

Nemesis of Mortals

Evangel of Heliod

To Recap

Polukranos, World Eater
Best rares:

Best uncommons:

Best commons:

Armed with this knowledge, drafting G/W should be a breeze. G/W offers up the best aggressive strategy in the BTT Draft format. It should be noted that taking cards that kill flyers with our later picks can be rewarding here. Limited sideboarding is very important in the current format.

Next week, we’ll begin taking a look at Journey into Nyx. We’ll discuss early card evaluations in an effort to improve our chances at the prerelease. In the meantime, we should brush up on our Limited skills by reading the following columns: Very Limited, Theros Sealed, and Sideboarding in Limited. These columns lay a strong groundwork for success at the Journey into Nyx prerelease.

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