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Allied Colors in Standard

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This week, I have for you five different allied-colored decks. All of these decks have gone 5-0 recently in a MTGO League, so they should have the chops needed to do well for you at your local Friday Night Magic event. Let's get started.

U/W Artifacts

The first deck I have for you isn't the typical uw deck you'll be expecting. Let's take a look at uw Artifacts.


Scrap Trawler and Teshar, Ancestor's Apostle combine to form a recursion engine that allows you to keep a steady stream of creatures on the battlefield. With both in play, if you have a Walking Ballista either in your hand or graveyard, you can chump block your opponent's largest creature forever by blocking with your Scrap Trawler. That will allow you to put that Walking Ballista from your graveyard into your hand. You can then cast the Walking Ballista (even for 0 mana) to bring the Scrap Trawler back to the battlefield from your graveyard thanks to Teshar, Ancestor's Apostle. Of course, it's probably better to cast that Walking Ballista for at least 2 mana so that you can remove the counters from it prior to the combat damage that the Scrap Trawler will take. Plus, it can act as another blocker for you, even if you later destroy it due to removing all of its +1/+1 counters, as a way to infinitely block another creature.

All of that blocking you're able to do is benefited by having Teferi, Hero of Dominaria on the battlefield. When I originally looked at this decklist, Teferi stood out to me as a piece that could be swapped out. After all, his +1 loyalty ability isn't being used for any counter magic, only for card drawing. My original thought was to replace him with some card drawing and removal spells. However, I then thought about his -8 loyalty ability and how that would be used to remove an opponent's biggest creature each turn (or possibly multiple creatures if you don't ultimate Teferi without leaving a loyalty counter on him). That inevitability is what makes Teferi such a powerful planeswalker.

U/B Improvise

The next deck I have for you is built around the improvise keyword from Aether Revolt. Let's take a look at ub Improvise.


What this deck wants to do is play artifacts, and lots of them. Flood the board with artifacts of all kinds, cast The Antiquities War, and a couple of turns later attack with a huge army of 5/5 artifacts. The deck also plays Karn, Scion of Urza which happens to be able to make his own artifacts, and those artifacts get bigger and bigger with each additional artifact you play. They also basically get +5/+5 when the third lore counter is placed on The Antiquities War thanks to the way they're worded.

If you can't seem to find a copy of The Antiquities War, you can always use those artifacts you have in play to help you cast your Herald of Anguish. Not only does this creature hit for a ton in the air, but it can also act as removal for you by sacrificing those same artifacts you used to help cast it.

B/R Aggro

Our next deck is by far the most aggressive deck I have for you this week. Let's take a look at br Aggro.


This nearly Mono-Red deck splashes Black for only two cards. The first is Unlicensed Disintegration. This removal spell helps you deal with any abnormally large threat while also providing a bit of extra damage, assuming you control an artifact. The extra bit of reach this spell provides can be just what's needed to close out a close game. The second card that the Black splash is for is Scrapheap Scrounger. Bringing this creature back from the graveyard can allow you to keep constant pressure on your opponent. The only other creature in the deck that can come back from the graveyard is Rekindling Phoenix, so you have multiple ways to keep that pressure on.

Since this deck is nearly Mono-Red, you're able to cast Goblin Chainwhirler very consistently on turn three. Having a 3/3 with first strike will make blocking very difficult for your opponent. That's more aggressive power for this deck.

R/G Dinosaurs

The next deck I have for you harkens back to a time, not so long ago, on the plane of Ixalan. Let's take a look at rg Dinosaurs.


Llanowar Elves is the only new card in this deck, and the ramp it provides is incredible. You can certainly use that ramping to play your large creatures ahead of schedule, which can be a real problem for your opponent. It also helps provide a 2-point reduction for the mana needed to cast Ghalta, Primal Hunger, assuming you tap the Llanowar Elves for mana. Llanowar Elves singlehandedly allows you all of the speed of an aggro deck without sacrificing any of the power.

G/W Counters

The final deck I have for you also includes the mana ramp that Green decks are known for and combines it with a great place to put that mana late in the game. Let's look at gw Counters.


Let me just go on record by saying that I think Shalai, Voice of Plenty is an amazing card. The hexproof she provides for you allows you to stay alive longer and keep more creatures in play, as long as you're able to protect Shalai herself. That's where Blossoming Defense comes in. It allows Shalai, Voice of Plenty to gain hexproof for herself when she is targeted by a removal spell played by your opponent. Since the deck only runs two copies of Blossoming Defense, you'll want to save them for when it's most important to keep her in play.

Shalai, Voice of Plenty also provides you with a place to put your unused mana in the late game. The amazing thing is that with each activation, she provides a +1/+1 counter to each creature you have in play, no matter how many that is. Plus, when you combine her with Lyra Dawnbringer, those counters equal additional points of lifelink for all of your angels in play.

Wrapping Up

Now that you've seen the five examples I had for you of allied-color decks, which one is your favorite? Let me know by leaving a comment below or you can reply to me directly on Twitter (@mikelikesmtg), or email me directly at mikelikesmtg@gmail.com. And be sure to join me here again next week as I continue my search for innovative decks in Standard. I'll see you then!

— Mike Likes


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