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Subject: [PAUPER] White/Green Fliers rss

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Garcian Smith
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Northridge
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Hi there,

I'm playing MTG again thanks to some friends who are getting me back in it. I've grown interested in the Pauper format where you can only use commons. The deck I've made uses fliers as I've noticed really powerful fliers lately.

Here's the list:

(19)CREATURES:
4 - Squadron Hawk
4 - Leonin Skyhunter
4 - Stormfront Pegasus
4 - Fledgling Griffin
3 - Kor Sanctifiers

(8)REMOVAL:
4 - Journey to Nowhere
4 - Pacifism

(5)BUFF:
4 - Inspired Charge
1 - Adventuring Gear

(4)DRAW:
4 - Snake Umbra

(24)LANDS:
6 - Forest
4 - Teetering Peaks
14 - Plains

So the idea here is to simply use fliers to wreak havoc while his creatures are not prepared. If they do have fliers or reach units, you can cast the removal on them and swing past them. The fliers I've added are all 2-cost guys, most that have 2 damage on them. Squadron Hawks is extremely good card advantage so it is kept. Kor Sanctifiers is only there to get rid of any threat that journey as well as Pacifism cannot deal with. Inspired Charge really adds up on the damage you can do... I would say it's sort of like a white Overrun. Snake Umbra is the only reason green is in here as it does 3 key things: it adds 1 more damage to a flier that you have, it gives them protection from removal and it also draws cards for you to put more threats out. Teetering Peaks adds a solid 2 damage even though it comes it tapped. The thing is that most of my cards cost 2, so I'm bound to have 1 left over at times.

The key changes I want to make is a few. I'm going to remove Fledgling Griffin as its flying is too sporadic for me. To replace that, I'm going to add Kor Skyfisher and use its ability to bounce the Teetering Peaks. Then I'm thinking about removing Adventuring Gear to throw in Prophetic Prism as I can use the Skyfisher to bounce that so I can have more cards this was as well.

Comments?
 
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Cyrus the Great
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I'm not sure if the Skyhunter is a good fit with this mana base: could you drop the Peaks and throw in some more Forests and green pump spells?
 
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AJ Newhausen
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Revelade wrote:
Then I'm thinking about removing Adventuring Gear to throw in Prophetic Prism as I can use the Skyfisher to bounce that so I can have more cards this was as well.

No way. If you have Adventuring Gear on the table, Skyfisher should bounce a land to give you more landfall.

The way aggressive decks win is to deal 20 to the opponent before their lack of individual card power comes back to bite them. You don't want to be drawing more cards (especially not as inefficiently as Prophetic Prism) because if you reach a point where you have nothing better to do than spend two mana to draw a card, you've probably already lost.

Honestly, I don't think Snake Umbra does enough for you to add an entire second color to your deck. (Worse, since you already have four lands that do nothing for your mana.) I'd scrap the green entirely and go with Adventuring Gear instead.

One question...is this Standard Pauper? I can't tell if you're restricting yourself to Standard-legal cards because of the format or if that's all that you own. If not, pick up a few Bonesplitters to go with those Squadron Hawks as well.
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Jason Cawley
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I think 4 Inspired Charge along with the Umbras is too much pump - you risk having few creatures left alive on the board after enemy removal and a hand full of ways to make stronger critters you do not have.

I'd increase equipment instead - say a 2nd Gear. I don't know if you have access to older cards (generally the Pauper format does, but you personally might now own them), but the Bonesplitter from original Mirrodin would be perfect - 1 to cast, 1 to equip, give +2/+0, and it is a common. Could use that instead of a second gear if you can get that. I'd only run 2 Charge maximum.

Another item to consider is Brave the Elements, since all your creatures are white. Sideboard perhaps. I'd also put Plummet in your sideboard - you often will only care about removing blockers with flying, and it is more permanent than enchantment removal (since the enchantment can't be destroyed to "free" the creature) and it is instant speed.

I wouldn't mess with the mana base just for teetering peaks. Just use 4 terramorphic expanse instead, with 2 gear say. It gives double landfall for your gear and Fledgling Griffins and it fixes your mana (e.g. to ensure double white turn 2).

It is OK to go up to 3 for some creatures, and Kemba's Skyguard fits the theme and the incidental lifegain can help win races. You really want 20 threat creatures for a deck like this, not just 16.

Consider, in you first 5 draw steps you will have seen a fifth of your deck (marginally faster perhaps with the Snake Umbra but around that). You can expect to see only 3 creatures. If an enemy deck has 4 removal he will see one in that time, and if he runs 8 he may well see 2. You will have 1-2 live creatures on the board by turn 5. If you are lucky you will have had one creature hitting since turn 3. Your opponent is still on no sort of clock unless you have 2 live hitters.

Up your flying creature count to 20 and you have 2-3 expected alive then instead fo 1-2. That is a huge difference in the "clock rate" the enemy is on.

You can't think of the Sanctifiers as creatures for this because (1) they won't be played until 4 mana and they have a target (2) they will probably be blocked by enemy ground creatures. They are fine for defense and their 2 for 1, and especially good against opponents that use enchantment removal, but you can't count on that.

+4 Kemba's Skyguard
+4 Terramorphic Expanse
+1 Adventuring Gear

-2 Inspired Charge
-1 Snake Umbra
-4 Teetering Peaks
-1 Kor Sanctifiers
-1 Pacifism

Much less likely to run out of live creatures, I'd think...
 
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AJ Newhausen
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JasonC wrote:

I think 4 Inspired Charge along with the Umbras is too much pump - you risk having few creatures left alive on the board after enemy removal and a hand full of ways to make stronger critters you do not have.

Agreed, but I'd still rather cut the Snake Umbra. It doesn't really justify an extra color in the deck. If this deck is going to play one non-white card, I'd feel much better if it was Lightning Bolt, and we've already got four red lands in the deck. Replace the Snake Umbra with Lightning Bolt, and the six Forests with four Plains and two Mountains.

Quote:
I'd increase equipment instead - say a 2nd Gear. I don't know if you have access to older cards (generally the Pauper format does, but you personally might now own them), but the Bonesplitter from original Mirrodin would be perfect - 1 to cast, 1 to equip, give +2/+0, and it is a common. Could use that instead of a second gear if you can get that. I'd only run 2 Charge maximum.

Agreed...at least one of those Charges should be more Adventuring Gear. Four mana is way too much to ask for from an aggressive deck like this with regularity.

Quote:
Another item to consider is Brave the Elements, since all your creatures are white. Sideboard perhaps.

That's uncommon. I'll ignore Plummet since I'm cutting green.

Quote:
I wouldn't mess with the mana base just for teetering peaks. Just use 4 terramorphic expanse instead, with 2 gear say. It gives double landfall for your gear and Fledgling Griffins and it fixes your mana (e.g. to ensure double white turn 2).

Maybe, but Teetering Peaks makes me want to splash red instead of green. Also, Fledgling Griffin doesn't really care about double landfall. Then again, this deck has zero one-mana creatures, so we can probably sneak a few in.

Quote:
It is OK to go up to 3 for some creatures, and Kemba's Skyguard fits the theme and the incidental lifegain can help win races. You really want 20 threat creatures for a deck like this, not just 16.

A fine suggestion, but I don't know if 2 power is enough for three mana. Definitely a possibility.

Quote:
You can't think of the Sanctifiers as creatures for this because (1) they won't be played until 4 mana and they have a target (2) they will probably be blocked by enemy ground creatures. They are fine for defense and their 2 for 1, and especially good against opponents that use enchantment removal, but you can't count on that.

Four mana feels like one too much for what you want this to do. I'd cut these entirely and go with a pair of Revoke Existence (1W sorcery: Exile target artifact/enchantment) in case you need this sort of effect.

The only problem is that I feel like I need one more creature. We have five aggressive creatures (adding Skyguard but removing Sanctifiers), but I'm not sure what the sixth should be. I'd try Kor Hookmaster as a way to shut down one creature too large to handle otherwise while you complete the flying onslaught.

Here's what I'd do, if this was my deck:

+4 Kemba's Skyguard
+2 Kor Hookmaster
+4 Lightning Bolt
+2 Revoke Existence
+1 Adventuring Gear
+2 Terramorphic Expanse
+3 Plains
+1 Mountain

-4 Pacifism
-2 Inspired Charge
-4 Snake Umbra
-3 Kor Sanctifiers
-6 Forest
 
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Jason Cawley
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If you are going to go red for real and add non evasion creatures, then I'd just go all the way to a Boros build modified for Pauper. Keep the flying subtheme plus red burn for finishing "reach", but plan on getting some of the early damage on the ground just from fast landfall creatures.

4 Steppe Lynx
4 Plated Geopedge
4 Goblin Bushwhacker
4 Kor Skyfisher
4 Stormfront Pegasus
4 Leonin Skyhunter

2 Adventuring Gear

2 Journey to Nowhere
4 Lightning Bolt
4 Staggershock (or Burst Lightning)

4 Evolving Wilds
4 Terramorphic Expanse
4 Teetering Peaks
6 Mountains
6 Plains

Bushwhackers give haste as well as pump, once you are playing 2 guys a turn. The Skyfishers can recur the Teetering Peaks or the Bushwhackers. 8 lands that trigger double landfall to pump Lynxs and Geopedes or a Gear-ed up flyer, plus 4 more land pump from the Peaks. 10 removal, 8 of it also "reach" burn to finish off their life total on turns 4-6.

FWIW...
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Simon Tan
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Looking over the list (assuming cards need to be Standard legal as well as no uncommons or higher)...

- Fledgling Griffin is kinda sub-par, considering you already have a clogged 2-casting cost line. You could sacrifice a little of the flying theme to put Steppe Lynx to start early pressure or Infantry Veteran to help your later attackers. If you do add Steppe Lynx, consider adding Terramorphic Expanse and/or Evolving Wilds to help pump it, as well as reduce the number of dead land draws by drawing them out with these cheap fetchlands. Kor Skyfisher is also a good choice, though I would use these to replace Stormfront Pegasus.

- Green doesn't really feel like it has a place here. For card draw, you could use Repel the Darkness to also help clear the way for attackers. (Generally, drawing many extra cards doesn't really help a deck that hopes to win quickly. I would use real pump spells like Groundswell or even Giant Growth instead of late-comer Snake Umbra.) You could also use Khalni Garden and Turntimber Grove in lieu of most of your regular Forests (again, Terramorphic Expanse will help you reduce it to a single copy if needed).

- Red is generally a better addition here than green, especially if you already have Teetering Peaks on the list. You could add burn to help push blockers away or push for the last points of damage.

- A third alternative would be to go mono-white. It will help reduce the lands you place in the deck to about 22 or even 20* (since most of your stuff costs 2 or lower). You can use Mighty Leap as a white pump spell (even though the flying would be redundant) instead of Snake Umbra, or use Hyena Umbra (which is much cheaper).

Overall, you're tweaking the deck more than actually needing to build it again. Check what cards or strategies are problematic for you, and see what you can use to help improve your game.

*20 not recommended.
 
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Steve Wagner
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20 lands is fine if the deck's average cost is between 1 and 2. Sometimes, people are putting in too much land, just because they see everyone else doing it.

Yes, you don't want to get mana hosed at the beginning of the game, but you sure don't want to be drawing land late when you really need something else.

Also, you need to ask yourself what you're going to be doing with that extra land late in a game. Most people put in a bunch of cheap stuff that helps at the beginning of a game, but nothing for the late game.

Sorry if this is a little derailing, but I thought it is a good point to add.
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