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Paul Hagan's Magic The Gathering Deck Garage

Type I Land Destruction


Hey all! I know I haven’t been around for a bit, but I felt that the quality of my articles might have been slipping, so I decided to take a month off. However, now I’m back and ready to get rolling on a Deck Garage per week again.

Looking through my Inbox, I thought I might ease my way back into the mix of things by working on what looks like an already well-designed Type I land destruction deck. Here’s the e-mail I received:

Well first off i would like to say i am a weekly reader(or was... you haven't done it in a while:-(!!! ) neways... I leave for marine corps boot camp in a little over a month and a half and I was wondering if before I left if you could help me with a type 1 (primarily because of sinkhole) discard, land destruction deck ive been workin on. But its got a different theme 2 it. Basically i shut them down right off the get go via land destruction or mass discard, but preferably both). After i shut them down... plop, ankh of mishra to deal sum damage to them, and nothin in my deck costs over 4 so it seemed like a good idea. with no hand and no lands, it seems like they have a battle ahead of them.

here's the decklist.

4 Rain of Tears
4 Sinkhole
4 Rancid Earth
4 Ankh of Mishra
4 Hymn to Tourach
4 Duress
4 Hypnotic Specter
4 Nekratal (incase sumthing gets off)
4 Dark Ritual
1 Mind Twist
1 Diabolic Tutor

22 Swamps

There's the decklist. As a side thought, i would like to make the deck 1.5 instead of 1 but i hate the thought of losing sinkhole seeming its so powerful. Any thoughts would be greatful.

OK, I admit it – I’m biased towards the military. If you are in any branch and send me a deck that needs fixin’, you get to move a bit closer to the front of the line.

Not two weeks ago, I was preaching to a buddy of mine that the good land destruction decks usually run in the neighborhood of twelve to sixteen land destruction spells, not twenty-two. It drives me nuts when I see that happening. Fortunately, it looks like our contributor (henceforth referred to as The Marine) has the right idea. Not only that, but he has the correct land destruction spells out of black, including:

Rain of Tears
Rancid Earth

The only other spell worth considering that doesn’t cost too much mana is Choking Sands, which is only good if The Marine isn’t expecting a lot of Swamps to show up. If there aren’t any Swamps in sight, I would suggest pulling Rain of Tears in favor of Choking Sands, but otherwise, the land destruction is good as is.

I’m likewise pleased with Ankh of Mishra. However, I’m not so sure that four are warranted – The Marine can probably get away with just three copies. The extra slot will go towards an addition I need to make three or four paragraphs down.

-1 Ankh of Mishra

Moving towards the discard, it once again looks like The Marine is ahead of me. Duress and Hymn to Tourach are the best at what they do, and I wouldn’t change these at all.

When we hit creatures, I think I am able to make a change or two. Hypnotic Specter is good enough to make the cut, but I am not so happy with Nekrataal. It costs too much and it doesn’t really do enough to help The Marine win the game. We’ll look at removal momentarily, but I’d like to help this deck with a win condition.

The best thing I can think of for an issue that The Marine’s opponents will have issues dealing with is a 5/5 that can potentially hit the table on Turn 1. Be careful, though, as a well-timed burn spell can put you in a bad, bad spot.

-4 Nektrataal
+4 Phyrexian Negator

I do agree that The Marine needs some removal, but just to be on the safe side, it should be non-targeting, leading us to two obvious choices: Diabolic Edict or Chainer’s Edict. Seeing that The Marine will usually prefer to land an Ankh of Mishra early in the game, he likely won’t want to suffer through the effects of getting to the seven mana necessary to Flashback Chainer’s Edict. This being the case, let’s go with Diabolic Edict instead.

+4 Diabolic Edict

We do need to make room for this card, but that is easy enough to do. With four Duress and four Hymn to Tourach in the deck, I really don’t think Mind Twist is necessary. Yes, yes, it can be good, but so can getting rid of small creatures that could potentially beat you up throughout the course of the game, such as an early White Knight.

-1 Hymn to Tourach

We still need to clear up two more spots, but I’m seeing a very small mana curve in this deck. No card costs more than three mana now, *and* The Marine has access to Dark Ritual. I think it would be safe to cut two Swamps.

-2 Swamp

I think that does it for what I want to do to this deck; the rest is simply tweaking the deck to fit the local metagame. Here’s the final decklist:

4 Hypnotic Specter
4 Phyrexian Negator

3 Ankh of Mishra
4 Dark Ritual
4 Diabolic Edict
1 Diabolic Tutor
4 Duress
4 Hymn to Tourach
4 Rain of Tears
4 Rancid Earth
4 Sinkhole

LANDS (20):
20 Swamps

Hope that helps, and good luck (especially in boot camp – yikes!) I’ll see y’all next week.

-Paul Hagan

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