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Paul Hagan's Magic The Gathering Deck Garage


Hey all; welcome back to the deck garage. I had a huge amount of e-mail this week, so it looks like Regionals, Saviors going legal, and the approach of 9th Edition have really gotten people thinking about new decks. This week’s e-mail got picked for a different reason – it had a summer theme! Here’s an e-mail I received from Mark, who is a camp councilor…


Every summer (for the past 3 years) I have been playing casually at a camp for which I am a counselor. So this year I thought I'd think up a new deck based off a new set of Jokulhaups that I acquired.

22x Lands:
2x Mikokoro, Center of the Sea
2x God’s Eye, Gate to Reikai
4x Darksteel Citadel
4x Forgotten Cave
10x Mountain

6x Creature Spells:
4x Rukh Egg
2x Darksteel Gargoyle

24x Other Spells:
4x Incinerate
4x Pyroclasm
4x Starstorm
4x Dismantle
4x Seething Song
4x Jokulhaups

8x Artifacts:
4x Energy Chamber
4x Darksteel Reactor

3x Boseiju, Who Shelters All
4x Unforge
3x Boil
4x Grab the Reins
1x Obliterate

As you can see the main win condition is the indestructible Darksteel
Reactor with secondary wins in Ruhk Egg and Darksteel Gargoyle. The basic
idea is to establish board control using Incinerate, Pyroclasm, and
Starstorm, play darksteel reactor (accelerating the counters with E Chamber
and Dismantle), and then wipe the board with Jokulhaups if or when

I put the Mikokoro and the cycle lands in for drawing into what I might
need, and the God's Eye and Citadel are there for their synergy with

I'd like to try to keep the deck mono colored for simplicity, as well as
themed around Jokulhaups.
The sideboard reflects the decks that were being played last year: Elf and
Nail, Counter-Donate, Equipment weenies, and (bad) affinity.

Thanks in advance,



Looking over Mark’s deck, it looks like he is off to a decent start, but there are a few things that I would like to see change.

The first thing that jumps out at me is the lack of speed in getting charge counters on Darksteel Reactor. Yes, the deck has Energy Chamber and Dismantle, but I honestly think that Dismantle has to come out (it doesn’t do as much any more), leaving us with just four cards to accelerate the Reactor. Why don’t we kick things off by throwing in a full set of Coretapper in place of the Dismantle?

-4 Dismantle
+4 Coretapper

Not only will the ‘Tapper allow Mark to add charge counters quicker, but he can also respond to anything that would destroy it by sacrificing it and adding two more counters to his Darksteel Reactor.

Looking at the cards in this deck, I’m not seeing too many cards with a high casting cost that need to be dropped really early. The mass removal, such as Pyroclasm and Starstorm, should be able to take care of anything that shows up early, while Mark waits to get the appropriate mana for his win conditions and / or Jokulhaups on the table. I would also like to give Mark a little life after Jokulhaups, so why don’t we cut Seething Song (for reasons above) in favor of Darksteel Ingot, which can help provide him with mana after a Jokulhaups hits.

-4 Seething Song
+4 Darksteel Ingot

At first, I did want to get rid of Rukh Egg – it never seems *that* good. However, it does provide Mark with a decent win condition after a Jokulhaups resolves, and I can’t justify cutting it, so it stays. Ditto Darksteel Gargoyle.

I do, however, want to add two copies of Zo-Zu the Punisher to the deck. I’m not entirely sure that they are spectacular additions, but it can’t hurt to resolve one post-‘Haups.

+2 Zo-Zu the Punisher

To make room, I’m going to cut one copy of Starstorm and one land.

-1 Mikokoro, Center of the Sea
-1 Mountain

Looking over Mark’s sideboard, I really can’t complain about much aside from Unforge. Boseiju seems like a good call, as does Boil, as any form of blue control will be the bane of this deck’s existence. Grab the Reins can’t hurt against Tooth and Nail, and the lone copy of Obliterate seems like an OK call for any match that goes slowly.

-4 Unforge [SB]

Honestly, I think Shatter is just as good of call as anything here, so why don’t I toss in one additional copy of Oblierate and three copies of Shatter to replace Unforge.

+1 Obliterate [SB]
+3 Shatter [SB]

I think that wraps up work on Mark’s deck – here’s the final result…

4 Coretapper
2 Darksteel Gargoyle
4 Rukh Egg
2 Zo-Zu the Punisher

4 Darksteel Ingot
4 Darksteel Reactor
4 Energy Chamber
4 Incinerate
4 Jokulhaups
4 Pyroclasm
3 Starstorm

LANDS (21):
4 Darksteel Citadel
4 Forgotten Cave
2 God’s Eye, Gate to Reikai
2 Mikokoro, Center of the Sea
9 Mountain

3 Boil
3 Boseiju, Who Shelters All
4 Grab the Reins
2 Obliterate
3 Shatter

Hope that helps, Mark, and good luck! I’ll see y’all next week.

-Paul Hagan


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