Welcome to another installment into the Precon Recon series. Today, we are going to be looking at the new Golgari deck, Golgari Growth. For a look at the original deck list, check it out here: http://www.wizards.com/Magic/TCG/productarticle.aspx?x=mtg/tcg/returntoravnica/intropacks#deck4.
The Golgari Growth deck is all about fattening up your graveyard to fatten your creatures later on. Scavenge is the Golgari keyword ability. Scavenge allows you to “recycle” dead creatures for +1/+1 counters on your living creature. But there are some things about the deck that do not seem to fit in, and need to be fixed in order to properly exploit the graveyard.
As with every Precon Recon we begin by evaluating certain cards, and removing those that no longer fit the needs of the deck. For this deck, as we previously mentioned, proper exploitation of the graveyard is key. Anything that does no longer suite that goal shall have to be removed.
We begin by removing a very useless card for this style deck, in my opinion. That card would be Veilborn Ghoul. A 4/1 for five mana that cannot block, and returns to your hand when a Swamp enters the battlefield does not seem like a very Golgari effect. Remove it. Slum Reaper may help you get a creature with Scavenge into the grave, but it may be costly if you should draw this and have no other options. I suggest removing it. Stonefare Crocodile is a nice creature in it has decent power and payable lifelink, but I feel it is going to be out of place in here moving on, and should thus be removed. When evaluating the Scavenge ability, I prefer the cheaper routes. That means that the seven drop, seven Scavenge Terrus Wurm is vastly overpriced in this deck, and should be removed. The Walking Corpses may seem nice, at a 2/2 for just two, but perhaps better options are available. Serpent’s Gift truly does become unnecessary especially when there was only one copy, remove. While Rites of Reaping does have some amazing benefits, I feel it is very overpriced and should be removed. Launch Party is another card that has a better option out there, and should be replaced. Aerial Predation is another card that is just out of place in this deck. The Gobbling Ooze may be a fun way of exploiting getting creatures to the graveyard, but it is so expensive just to get out. While I do really love Golgari Longlegs, there are just some better options going on right now, and their spots could be better used. That is fifteen cards out.
The first addition I would like to suggest is also another subtraction. I think that the Guildgates are so valuable when running multiple colors, yet only one was present in this deck. I think that green mana plays the main contribution to the deck, so let’s replace two Swamps and only one Forest with the remaining three spaces for three Golgari Guildgates. Slitherhead is such a great creature, and again, there were only two copies in the deck. Definitely up it to four. The Drudge Beetle is a good replacement to the Walking Corpses, so adding in two more replaces them with equal casting cost, power/toughness, but also brings with it a late game Scavenge. Some of the best things to be putting +1/+1 counters on are things with flying and lifelink, why not get both in one creature, the Daggerdrome Imp! Up the count two more for a total of four. A card that should definitely go into this deck, even though it is a rare is Lotleth Troll. Two copies should suffice. Grisly Salvage is such a great card, and allows you to go find the creature you need (probably a Lotleth Troll) AND fattens the graveyard at the same time, up this by three for four copies. Then, I like being able to recycle things I may have used or lost, so another copy of Treasured Find is key. Then, we work on removal spells and graveyard work by adding in Bone Splinters. Sacrifice a creature to destroy a creature for only one mana, means you should have mana to spend to Scavenge what you just sacrificed! Three copies round out the reconstruction!
So when the deck is all said and done, it should be very similar to this:
4 Golgari Guildgate
1 Acidic Slime
1 Corpsejack Menace
4 Daggerdrome Imp
1 Dreg Mangler
4 Drudge Beetle
1 Korozda Guildmage
2 Korozda Monitor
1 Sluiceway Scorpion
1 Wild Beastmaster
2 Lotleth Troll
2 Golgari Keyrune
4 Grisly Salvage
2 Treasured Find
3 Bone Splinters
And there we have it, another Precon Recon is finished! The new deck will play faster due to the cheaper creatures in the deck now. There is still plenty of ways to fill your graveyard, perhaps more so now than before. Plus, there is some better options going for direct creature removal.
The last suggestion I would make is try and figure out if certain cards are not meeting your expectations, and replace them with Sewer Shambler. I happen to love the Sewer Shambler, so try and squeeze him in in place of something that may not be as useful. You definitely get your mana’s worth out of the Shambler!
So that is that. Tune in next week when I take a look at another of the Return to Ravnica preconstructed decks. If there is one in particular you would like to see me get to first, be sure to send me an e-mail and let me know which deck, and how you would like to see it reconstructed, and I would be happy to make that deck a priority!
So until next time, keep safe and keep gaming!