A couple of days ago, I presented an Aether Revolt Sealed pool and asked which of 3 possible decks you liked more. Today I’m going to give you my answer.
A) Green-Black Splashing Red
Normally, when you look at a pool, you think, “How do I win the game with this deck?” When you have a pool that is as uniquely powerful as this one, however, then your question changes. It becomes, “How do I lose the game with this deck?” Since all 3 decks have enough power to win, you should try to minimize the games in which you lose. I think the deck that loses the fewest games is choice A) B/G.
The main problem with R/G is that it’s clunky, and clogged at the 4-mana slot. If you ever stumble, you don’t have many ways to catch up. Your 4-mana creatures are great, but don’t do a whole lot to stabilize the board, particularly Scrapper Champion. The second problem is that it’s one-dimensional—you don’t have a ton of removal, and no way to kill a creature with more than 2 toughness that is not an artifact.
When I look at R/G, I see a lot of ways to win, but I also see ways to lose that I do not see in both other decks—being too clunky or losing to a creature you can’t remove. For this reason, I don’t like it as much.
Then, there’s B/G and B/R, but B/G has a couple of advantages. The first advantage is that it’s great at turning on Fatal Push. With 3 Implements and an Unbridled Growth, Push becomes a premium removal spell that the other decks don’t have access to. In a pool where the weakest part is the removal, I like to play the deck that maximizes what I do have access to, and in this case, ironically, the deck that has less removal does that by virtue of being better at turning on revolt.
The second advantage is that B/G has a much better curve. If you just look at the number of spells in each casting cost slot, you’ll notice that it’s about the same, but if you look at where the power is, it’s better distributed in B/G. B/G has 4 creatures that are good to play on turn 2. B/R only has one. If you add the Implements of Ferocity to this, then you have a deck that is much better at establishing a dominating board presence early on.
Overall, it seems to me like the average quality in the B/G deck is also just higher. If your opponent deals with your haymakers in the B/R deck, you might end up in trouble, but B/G will consistently play a solid creature turn after turn, so even if they deal with your Demon you’re going to have a good board. Basically, B/G’s filler cards are better than B/R’s.
B/R has 2 Skyship Stalkers, which are great, but since green is also not lacking in the bombs department (Tusker and Rishkar are both awesome, and you’re going to have Demon and Gremlins no matter what), this part is kind of a wash. On top of that, B/G is better at playing Demon. It has one more artifact, Wanderer, and Rishkar to speed it up.
G/B/r does have a downside in that the mana is a little worse. You have an extra color, after all. But in the end I don’t think it’s that big a deal since you have 4 cantrips and 6 red sources—Aether Hub, Growth, Prism, Wanderer, Servant, and Mountain—which is more than enough for a single late-game splash card.
In the end, I think B/G is the most well-rounded of the 3 decks. It’s the best combination of power, curve, and answers, and the deck that I think is the least likely to lose to something random. When I look at R/G I see problems (clunky and few removal spells), and when I look at B/R I also see problems (few ways to get revolt, not a great curve as far as creatures are concerned, etc.). When I look at B/G, however, I see no problems, and that’s what I’m looking for in a pool as powerful as this.
In some less powerful pools it might be worth sacrificing a curve for bombs, but since this pool gives you bombs either way, I’d rather go with the deck that I feel will have a solid draw and be competitive no matter which part of it I end up drawing.