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Exploring Explorer with LOLmentals

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New formats are always a blast, but especially so when they're something the community has been asking for so desperately - a paper eternal format on MTG Arena!

Explorer is the newest format to hit MTG Arena, and despite the different name it is essentially just "Pioneer Lite" - all the cards on MTG Arena that are currently legal in Pioneer, with the plan to continue to release cards until it lines up exactly with paper Pioneer (at which point the name will change from Explorer to Pioneer). No unpredictable Anthologies, no digital only cards, just a format you can play the same deck both online and in paper.

Omnath, Locus of Creation

In an interesting quirk, some of the cards that are banned in Historic are legal in Explorer, like one Locus of Creation in particular. However, we're not using him today in a way you might expect...

Time Stamps:

05:35 - Match 1

18:11 - Match 2

28:56 - Match 3


This is actually a port over from Historic, where I built a very similar deck without Omnath, Locus of Creation, and the game plan is very similar. This is the rare Magic deck that can be both brutally aggressive, but also draw tons of cards and ramp way up the curve.

Akoum Hellhound
Brushfire Elemental
Risen Reef

Landfall is the name of the game, and while Omnath, Locus of Creation can do some big things, you're not afraid to play smallball either. Akoum Hellhound and Brushfire Elemental hit hard in this deck, allowing to put the pressure on your opponent as early as turn two and draw out their removal spells.

Risen Reef bridges the gap here, drawing cards and giving you landfall triggers for your early plays, while ramping things up into the mid and late game where things start to get crazy.

Omnath, Locus of the Roil
Cavalier of Thorns
Chandra, Awakened Inferno

Omnath, Locus of the Roil may be the other Omnath, but it still does a great job of providing you with some removal and reach and also scaling up as the lands keep coming. Cavalier of Thorns provides a monstrous body that can defend against fliers and trigger more landfall action, but the real prize is Chandra, Awakened Inferno. Usually seen as an anti-control sideboard card, Chandra is everything in this deck. She's a one-sided sweeper, a win condition, and a removal spell, that's all very castable early and uncounterable, which is important against removal heavy control decks.

This deck was a blast to play in Historic and is perhaps even more fun in Pioneer where the removal isn't as good and you get to play Omnath too!

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