May 5, 2013

Featured Deck: Standard Grixis Delver


This week I would like to feature the deck of my friend Bryan Jeffrey Borromeo. Although Grixis decks tend to be more control-ish with great access to a wide variety of removals, counterspells and card draws, I liked what Bryan did in this deck that he incorporated this advantage of Grixis to an aggressive based strategy.

Why Grixis Aggro?
Bryan explained to me that he tried Grixis Control but the metagame was just too aggressive and powerful for a very reactive deck like Grixis Control. It was very slow against midrange decks like UWR reckoner and Jund mindrange builds. With the Grixis Delver Aggro build, it gave him opportunities to deal early damage and deal about 10 damage before the opponent drops his or her threats. That way, employing the flying creatures and the burn spells like Searing Spear + Snapcaster Mage combos can still steal a win for you.

Choice of Cards.
I asked Bryan about his choice of cards. Basically what he did was to put value creatures early in the game and dump Olivia Voldaren and Duskmantle Seer in the late game to finish the game off. Duskmantle Seer is a card that I expect to be used more after the release of Dragon's Maze with the printing of the Split cards and since those cards are very useful, people would definitely use split cards in their deck lists. Duskmantle Seer can single-handedly punish those decks with split cards (split cards when revealed with Duskmantle Seer's ability deal damage equal to the total mana cost of both halves of the split card). The classic Runechanter's Pike + Thought Scour combo can let you race with any creature that you play in the late games, giving this deck it's needed reach. Also, the removal and counter package of this deck was designed to deal with virtually anything that your opponent may have. Dreadbores for Planeswalkers. Rakdos Return for control match ups. Searing Spears, Izzet charms, Mizzium Mortars can deal with creatures your opponents will play against you.

Delver of Screts

The comeback of Delver in standard? It might be outrageous to say this ^_^ but Bryan's deck is definitely a good start. Delver has proven its power before but since Standard didn't have access to cards fixing the top cards of your library to ensure flipping of Delver early in the game, Delver may not be the powerhouse that it used to be. However, with many spells in this deck, flipping Delver early is not that difficult. But the thing is, this deck doesn't solely depend on Delver of Secrets to win the game. Delver is just another win condition in the deck which I think makes the deck strong.

Frostburn Weird

One of the cards that I like to discuss in this build is the four Frostburn Weird in the main deck. Frostburn Weird is a common card and I think many people just didn't care about it and has underestimated this card. I think this card is very strong for what it's worth. It blocks virtually any aggressive creature in the format right now. It can also kill and survive Geist of Saint Traft. Although Boros Reckoner can still be a problem, at least you can save damage for 1 turn since reckoner will surely deal the damage it took to this creature instead. Against Control decks, Frostburn Weird can attack 4 damage each turn until it is dealt with by the control player. You can save your other creatures for later after waiting for the control player to cast a Supreme Verdict. You might end up watching many control players wasting their removal in this 1/4 common creature.

Standard Grixis Delver by Bryan Jeffrey Borromeo
4 Watery Grave
2 Blood Crypt
2 Dragonskull Summit
2 Drowned Catacomb
3 Sulfur Falls
3 Steam Vents
1 Desolate Lighthouse
3 Island
2 Mountains

4 Delver of Secrets
4 Frostburn Weird
4 Snapcaster Mage
2 Vampire Nighthawk
2 Olivia Voldaren
2 Duskmantle Seer
2 Dreadbore
2 Mizzium Mortars
1 Rakdos's Return

2 Runechanter's Pike


4 Thougthscour
4 Searing Spear
1 Devour Flesh
2 Counterflux
2 Izzet Charm

2 Psychic Spiral
2 Dissipate
2 Desecration Demon
2 Izzet Staticaster
2 Rolling Temblor
2 Negate
1 Dreadbore
1 Jace, Memory Adept

Playtesting vs Bant Control: 3-0
Playtesting against the Bant Control of our fellow friend, the deck was undefeated 3-0, not counting the games which the opponent kept less than 6 cards in mulligans or playing with only 2mana for the rest of the game because they may not be optimal games to measure the strength of this deck.

Feel free to test and tweak this decklist for your FNM this week. Feel free to comment and post your experiences and ideas about this deck.

Enjoy and win!

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