Last weekend, my friends and I attended a local Team Constructed event—but instead of Legacy alongside Standard and Modern, Pauper was the third format.
I was the designated Standard player, since nobody plays it in my area. Everyone plays almost exclusively Legacy (this is where my Legacy love come from—my roots!), so they needed to adapt to a new environment!
My last individual Standard event was Grand Prix Warsaw on November 12th, and my weapon of choice was Temur Energy. I did very well with the deck at the Pro Tour and that GP, so I figured why not stick to what I know the best?
I picked up the same exact list and sideboard plan from 6 weeks ago, and it worked out perfectly!
If you want to know more about it, check out my previous article—it’s still plenty useful.
I faced two mirrors and two control decks. Control decks are known for having a good Temur matchup, but I managed to go 4-0 thanks to the flexibility of Temur post-sideboard, dropping just one game to U/W Cycling game 1 .
I love my sideboard plan in the mirror—cutting 8 green 2-drops is awesome. I love my 4 Viziers post-sideboard, and I still dislike Nissa, Steward of Elements in this matchup.
Overall, I feel like Temur is the deck that suits my playstyle best, and my list feels solid against control and Mono-Red.
Though my teammate played Burn, I’m going to talk about a different deck today since I already offered my take on Burn after GP Madrid just a few weeks ago.
I’m going to pick up the list of a friend of mine, who’s known for brewing his own decks (mostly in Legacy), but today it was Modern, and his pet deck of choice was Faeries!
Faeries was always a deck in Modern, but never a popular one. It is one of the few decks that plays the once-banned Bitterblossom, so it definitely got my attention.
Daniele’s list is very different from others. He doesn’t play any discard spells, and relies on countermagic to interact with his opponent.
Yuta Takahashi, a Japanese Pro Player, is a Faeries aficionado I remember finishing X-3 at GP Chiba, losing to 3 Eldrazi Tron. Naturally, his suggests that this deck isn’t the best equipped to fight Urza’s lands, so if you expect many of those don’t play this deck (I would also suggest that you not play the format if that’s the case), but if you expect a grindy metagame with some combo decks, then Faeries can fight well!
Pauper is rising in popularity, and I even saw the notion of a Pauper GP floating around! I’ve never followed the format, and so I left it to my teammate to do all of the homework.
He is a fan of Affinity, and this was his list:
The pros of playing 6 Chromatic Star are that you are faster and can go off with affinity/metalcraft cards earlier than the version with Prophetic Prism.
On the other hand, I saw plenty of times where my teammate had mana troubles. I don’t believe that I saw him cast Gearseeker Serpent a single time, but I saw him holding in his hand plenty of times without the mana to cast it.
Moving forward, I would not recommend playing a version without Prophetic Prism.
He faced three mirrors, which are tricky matchups. It’s important to realize when to attack with Atog, and it’s a matchup where you have do to a lot of math. Atog is definitely your best card.
I asked him why he chose not to play Gorilla Shaman and decided to go with the full set of Ancient Grudge. He said that the Shaman easier to answer with cards like Hydroblast and Galvanic Blast, whereas Ancient Grudge is guaranteed to hand you a 2-for-1.
GP Santa Clara is around the corner, and I will be watching the coverage closely from home. I can’t wait to finally watch some Legacy!