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Three Decks for the Store Championships


The Dominaria Store Championships are happening this week, so there's no better time to take a look at the best decks of the format so you can decide what you should be playing. Let's start off by looking at Mono-Red Aggro.

Mono-Red Aggro

If you're looking to take home that Store Champion playmat, this is the deck I would suggest playing. It attacks fast and hard, and if your opponent stumbles even slightly you can take over the game completely. In the early game, you'll want to try to get a Soul-Scar Mage onto the battlefield if your opponent is playing anything other than complete control. That will allow you to use your Abrades and Lightning Strikes later on to shrink down their threats that you might otherwise have a difficult time dealing with.

Also remember that all sources of non-combat damage done to creatures your opponent controls will result in those creatures gaining -1/-1 counters if you have a Soul-Scar Mage in play. This includes the damage from exerting your Glorybringer as well as the damage from Goblin Chainwhirler's enter the battlefield effect. It would also include any damage Chandra inflicts on your opponent's creatures. This can become very important when facing down huge threats like Ghalta, Primal Hunger and the like.

Earthshaker Khenra and Ahn-Crop Crasher show up in full force in this deck to make blocking difficult, if not impossible, for your opponent. Use their abilities to force through as much damage as you can early on. That way you can rely on Chandra, Torch of Defiance and Hazoret the Fervent to deal the remaining few points of damage without needing to leave yourself wide open to a counter attack.

U/W Control

The next deck I have for you is the polar opposite of the previous deck. Let's take a look at U/W Control.

So, while the Hazo-Red deck attacks with blazing speed, this deck does the exact opposite. Your main goal with this deck is to keep your opponent's threats to a minimum because your deck gets stronger the longer the game goes. In the early game, you'll want to use your counterspells and removal on your opponent's creatures that will end the game within a few turns. Don't worry too much about creatures with 1 power, but try not to let too many of these small creatures pile up. You have mass creature removal spells and a way to gain life, so use your life total as a resource to make sure you get to the late game where you can begin deploying your threats.

Speaking of threats, your two main routes to victory will be through Torrential Gearhulk or Teferi, Hero of Dominaria. Torrential Gearhulk can attack for huge chunks of your opponent's life total, provided you've cleared the board of any potential blockers. With its ability to be flashed into play as a surprise blocker along with its ability to recast an instant card from your graveyard without paying its mana cost, you shouldn't have much trouble removing those potential blockers.

Teferi, Hero of Dominaria has quickly vaulted to the top of the list of most powerful planeswalkers in Standard. His +1 loyalty ability gives you both card advantage as well as a means of casting a counter spell, or bluffing one if you're not currently holding one. His -3 loyalty ability helps you clear any nonland permanent your opponent controls that you deem as a problem. If you manage to ultimate Teferi, his -8 loyalty ability acts as a form of Annihilator whenever you draw a card, and since this deck has multiple ways to draw additional cards you can quickly eliminate any and all threats your opponent has as well as the lands needed to cast further threats.

B/G Steel Leaf Stompy

The final deck you might want to consider playing is another aggressive deck that has the potential of going very big very quickly. Let's take a look at B/G Steel Leaf Stompy.

In the early game, this deck is hoping to get a Llanowar Elves into play. This enables the deck to ramp out its bigger threats a turn earlier than normal and makes it difficult for the opponent to keep up. If you manage to play a Steel Leaf Champion on turn two (thanks to a turn one Llanowar Elves), you can play a Heart of Kiran on turn three. You can then crew the Heart of Kiran with the Steel Leaf Champion in order to make it a creature which will give you 10 total power on the battlefield. Assuming you've played a forest each turn, you can then play Ghalta, Primal Hunger with your remaining 2 mana. Granted, this play pattern probably won't happen too often since it requires seven specific cards out of the nine cards you've gotten by turn three, but when it does happen the chances of you losing that game are next to none.

Even if the Magical Christmas-land scenario I gave you doesn't happen, you can regularly power out Ghalta, Primal Hunger on turn four, which can still be very difficult for your opponent to overcome. Remember that this deck also plays a full playset of Blossoming Defense, which can be important when trying to keep your dangerous threats on the battlefield. This deck is also running Heart of Kiran. This card can work wonders against White decks that are using Seal Away as their main source of creature removal.

Wrapping Up

That's my take on the three best deck choices for the Dominaria Store Championship. Which one is your favorite? Let me know if you play any of these choices at your local Store Championship and how you did. Also, I'd love to hear if you played a different deck and what your results were. You can 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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