EDIT: After looking at the list over the past couple of days I’ve realized I could probably cut all of the Mishra’s Factory as they don’t work well with Winter Orb. Also, unless I’m boarding out Winter Orb, the Hurricanes in the sideboard are not doing much either. In place of the Factory’s I’m thinking a Maze of Ith may be nice and some Elvish Archers. A Sylvan Library or two in the board sounds good in place of the Hurricanes. I’d also really love to play Typhoon in the board as well. Just some glaring deficiencies I noticed. I thought it might be fun to keep edits on how the deck evolves here, if anyone is even coming back to this post.
EDIT 2: I’ve done some tweaking and think I have the maindeck where I want it, or close to it at least. The sideboard is still under construction. I’ve dropped the 3 Mishras Factory’s and 2 Forest’s as well as cut all 3 Ehrnam Djinn, the lone Spitting Slug, 2 Scavenger Folk, and all 4 Ghazban Ogre for Maze of ith, a 3rd Pendelhaven, 4 Wyluli Wolf, 4 Timber Wolves, 4 Evlish Archers, and a 2nd Crumble. The creature count has upped to 30 and the curve tops out at 2cc. I haven’t had time to test it much, but the Timber Wolves have allowed me to trade weenies with fatties using banding, which is great. Cutting the Ernies was not easy, but can be and usually is a dead card if Winter Orb is already in play. The Archers were also a great addition. Between the Archers first strike, more pump from Wyluli Wolves, and the Timber Wolves’ banding, I have more combat trickery to play with. Pendelhaven is such a great card, so I felt I needed at least a third copy. Maze of Ith should be fine and help punch through for damage and save an attacker or fend off a big creature. The second crumble is also nice just having a bit more removal. The other cuts were not hard to let go of. The Spitting Slug actually worked against me during one game against Pestilence, the Ghazban Ogres were often held in hand for fear of his drawback, the Factory’s were a nonbo with Winter Orb, and the Scavenger Folk were often just vanilla 1/1’s and I felt 2 would suffice. The deck is now doing what I want it to; simply pumping out small creatures under Winter Orb with a bit of synergy from Nafs Asp, and a ton of combat tricks. Banding is something I think mono G could really benefit from and so far it’s worked well. Just yesterday I traded a Timber Wolves for a Serra Angel. If not for banding, the Serra would have put me on lock down and probably would have ended the game. So that’s it for the main. I’m having a lot of fun with it. I’ll put a last edit up soon on the sideboard and replace the pic with the updated version of the deck.
EDIT 3 (final): The maindeck is finished and I’ve replace the above pic with the final list. I went over the additions and cuts in the previous edit, so I wont get into those here. The tweaks have made the deck perform much better. It’s definitely doing what I want and is doing well. As for the sideboard, I’m not quite finished with it and will probably not come back with an edit on it. However, I’ll list out my current take on it, since I believe it’s pretty much finished, give or take a couple cards.
3 Black Vise
3 Whirling Dervish
1 Concordant Crossroads
2 Citanul Druid
2 Avoid Fate
I’ll start with Black Vise. I’ve seen a huge resurgence of Black vise recently and they’ve kicked my ass. It could be slightly due to the growing popularity of Atog decks, but I’ve seen them in a lot in other decks as well. This is a card I’ve always disliked if I wasn’t playing 4, so I may add one more, but I’ll see how 3 works. I figured if I’m playing a deck that’s not heavy on creatures, or just completely creature-less, I can board out the Timer Wolves for the Black vise, since the wolves’ banding isn’t going to do anything in those match ups. Having Black vise against those decks may help widdle them down a bit faster. The vise will also make these decks pay for their card advantage and balance out another one of greens weaknesses in lack of card draw. Next is 2 Crumble, making 4 in the 75. No-brainer here, Crumble is awesome. Good-bye Mishra’s Factory. I upped the Whirling dervish to a 3 of. Black rack has become popular and I absolutely hate The Abyss. The Dervish will ride on and put the opponent on a fast clock. Tranquility has been amazing. I’d like to play 3, but I’m going to continue to see how 2 work. Enchantment removal is not easy to come by and since I’m only playing 1 enchantment in the 75, Tranquility is an auto include. Concordant crossroads is a super fun card. The artwork is also beautiful. This is another cheap way to take care of The Abyss and put the pressure on at the same time. Next is Citanul Druid. This is just sort of a pet card and is the weak spot, but in the right match up, it can get out of hand. Unfortunately it may be cut. Last is Avoid fate. I’d like to add a third, but not sure on that yet. It’s main job is to protect the Winter Orbs. It’s always fun to have your opponent tap out to destroy your Winter orb only to have their Disenchant countered by a green spell. So, that’s it! Looking at the board made me realize how versatile green can be. There’s something in there for almost everything.
I’ve always loved fast aggro decks. Playing tons of creatures and overwhelming the opponent is my kind of Magic, so it was inevitable that I’d eventually try my hand at a mono G stompy deck. As everyone knows, mono G may not be the best choice for a single colored deck in old school, but it’s by far the most beautiful in my opinion. The color is so aesthetically pleasing that I don’t think I’ll mind if it loses every game, but I think it may hold its own.
I have a tendency to draw inspiration from popular decks around the latter half of the 90’s, circa 1997 to be specific. This is when I was really into Magic as a kid and I wanted to try and build something similar to Sven Geertsens 3rd place 1997 Senor Stompy deck. This deck was so much fun for me to play back in the day. The deck locked the opponent down with a Winter Orb while maintaining the ability to play tons of cheap fatties through Quirion Ranger, a Llanowar elf, and a Forest. That’s literally all it needed to get a swarm of creatures on the table. The deck had great synergy and played over 30 creatures. Unfortunately, I don’t have access to near as many efficient creatures to make this work in Old School, but a straight up Stompy deck with some winter orbs doesn’t sound bad, so I’m giving it a go.
I’ll start with the creatures. I always wanted to play Nafs Asp, so a playset of this bad boy was in for the first 1cc slot. He synergizes with winter orb and has beautiful artwork. Check. Next is Ghazban Ogre. Svend played him, he’s a 2/2 for G, and while he has a somewhat hefty drawback, as an aggro player, I don’t give a shit about drawbacks. I just want to smash face and Ghazban Ogre is good at that. Scavenger folk takes the next 1cc slot. This card is an auto include for mono G stompy. It takes care of artifacts and it swings. Another auto include is Lllanowar elves, which don’t need an explanation. Scryb Sprites is next on the list. A 1/1 flyer for G is a no brainer. Flying is rare for green and these guy’s can get in for tons of damage and even take down Serras and Dibs with a little help from Giant Growth and even live through it with a boost from Pendelhaven. So that makes 20 1 drop creatures. That should suffice for a good swarm under Winter Orb. For the 2 drops I started with Argothian Pixies. Another revered green creature in old school. They can stop/swing through Mishra’s Factory’s, Juggernauts, and Su-Chis and live to tell the tale. In the 3cc slot, I went with Spitting Slug. So far, he’s the weak link, but he’s got a big butt and he’s a Spitting Slug, so I’ll take 1. I had a hard time cutting Killer Bees from this slot, but with my Winter Orb route, I wouldn’t be able to utilize their ability, so they were scrapped. At the top of the curve is the best Green creature in Old School, Ehrnam Djinn. I decided to only play 3 due to space constraints and just wanting to try and keep the curve as low as possible.
The rest of the deck is 4 Winter Orb, 4 Giant Growth, a single Crumble, and a Chaos Orb. The giant growths, so far, have been used almost solely for combat tricks, taking down other creatures, as there is 0 creature removal other than Chaos Orb and sometimes Crumble. It was hard not to cut creatures to add other things like Sylvan Library, Ice Storm, Berserk, and other great cards, but I wanted to keep the creature count as high as I could.
There’s not much to the mana base. 4 strips, 2 Pendelhaven, 3 Factory’s, and 13 beautiful Forest’s. Svend played a total of 18 Land in his deck back in ’97. I’d love to be able to play such a low number as to add more creatures, but for many obvious reasons that’s not possible. But at some point I might just try it out anyway.
So as not to make this post even longer, I’m not going to delve into the sideboard. Half of it is just cards I like that aren’t really that great like Citanul Druid, Powerleech, and Storm Seeker. The cards that are actually doing things are Whirling Dervish, Tranquility, Hurricane, and Crumble. Avoid fate is sometimes nice to have. Winter orb is an important part of this deck, so the Avoid fate can come in handy for keeping those out, as well as saving an Ehrnam.
So far, I’ve played 7 matches with it and its 6-1. I’ve played two Counter-Burn decks, a couple matches against White Weenie, Black Rack, and two matches against The Deck. The first match against The Deck went to me 2-1 fairly easily. My buddy Brendon did some tweaking, made some clutch side-boarding decisions, and came back and knocked me off my winning streak. I believe every other match was 2-1. This deck is a lot of fun. It needs work, but it’s done surprisingly well right out of the gate. Spitting slug can be cut for something better. I think I could throw in a 3rd or even 4th Pendelhaven. A couple of Berserk would be nice and maybe a 4th Mishra’s Factory. Other than that I’m pretty happy with the maindeck. Most of the work is in the sideboard. I did, however, manage to take down Brendon on The Deck with a Storm Seeker in one game, which was extremely satisfying, so the sword stays. I’d like to put in a couple Sylvan Library to the board, possibly in the place of the Druids. The Tranquility’s have been great, so a third may not be a bad option. Also, Sandstorm might be a good choice against other weenie decks.
It’s been nice hiding out in the forest. There has been some negativity floating around the Old School community surrounding price spikes, buyouts, squabbles over this and that, and whatever else. I do my best to stay out of it. I play this format to hang out with good, like minded people, play fun cards, and have a good time. With Bootleggers Ball a week away, I’m beyond excited and could care less about all that shit. So next Saturday I’ll bid the pixies and druids adieu and stroll out of the forest and into the mountains. I’ll pick up a gang of goblins along the way and we will burn everything that crosses our path. Much like the creatures of the forest, the fee of their services is minimal.