I’m feeling on a bit of a Magic kick at the minute, so thought I’d come along here and showcase something that I’ve been recently attempting to build: a three-colour Magic deck! Of course, it’s not like I’ve never done this before, but whereas for the Jeskai deck that I featured some time ago, I’ve gone much wider than simply sticking to the single block. I always feel a bit nervous trying this, because generally speaking a multi-coloured block will contain a lot of support and fixing, which helps the deck play better. Going wider as I have done here, though, I’m forever tempted to throw in all sorts of stuff which runs the risk of diluting the mana base. I’m no expert, as we all know, but nevertheless, I thought I’d share this deck as the first iteration of one of my favourite three-colour combos!
Today, we’re going Mardu!
Mardu is the three-colour wedge of red, black and white. I enjoy playing black and red, and I enjoy black and white, so the idea for this started out as throwing both ideas together to see what happens! I am also a huge fan of Tarkir block, as it was the one I remember the most as being “around” when I first got into the game. The theme of it is also really nice, and I think I’ve probably got more decks that feature cards from this block than from any other!! I did open a lot of Tarkir packs though…
In choosing to build this deck, though, I was at a bit of a loss for how I wanted it to turn out. For example, I know that red and black tends to be very aggro, and I know that black and white tends to be quite controlling. How to smash those two effects together and build a cohesive deck? Well, I’ve ended up with a fair number of creatures, and there are a number of combat-trick elements from the other slant on this combo – red and white. I’m not a huge Boros player, of course, but I do like the constant attack and the way Boros lends itself to combat tricks. So I’ve tried to create a deck that has some interesting tricks up its sleeve while also being fast and obvious!
Night Market Lookout (2)
Honored Crop-Captain (2)
Angel of Despair
Ruthless Ripper (2)
Paragon of Fierce Defiance
Sorin, Solemn Visitor
Coat with Venom
War Flare (2)
Double Cleave (2)
Built to Last (2)
Built to Smash (2)
Mardu Runemark (2)
Talisman of Hierarchy
Nomad Outpost (4)
Overall, I think this is the kind of deck that really speaks to me, as the kind of Magic deck that I like to play. It’s not overly-competitive, it’s not overly-complex in terms of effects or whatever, it’s got enough interest to be fun and stuff, so it should just be a really nice deck to play!
There isn’t really any kind of “plan” to the deck, which might seem a little odd at first, and would certainly fly in the face of a lot of MTG strategy out there. However, I’ve found that the best way to build a deck to succeed is through a lot of redundancy. If I were to build this deck around, say, Zurgo Helmsmasher as the main protagonist, then his removal would potentially cripple the deck. He will benefit from a lot of the effects that I’ve included through anthem-effects on instants and other creatures, and he’ll get to do a lot of damage that way, for sure. But he isn’t the key piece.
All of those instant speed combat tricks can affect pretty much any creature, and most of them will have a devastating effect. Getting first strike or double strike, pumping them up to ridiculous power/toughness, it’s all good! Unless you’re playing some of the more esoteric meta-game win conditions, the object here is to reduce your opponent from 20 to 0 life. If I can do that by just throwing jacked-up creatures at my opponent, then why not, right?!
The deck does need a bit of tinkering, though. The land base in particular is a bit off! Whenever I build decks like this, I try to include as much mana-fixing as possible, for obvious reasons, and I usually find myself wanting to have the complete relevant cycle for a three-colour deck. For example, the “refuge lands” from Tarkir block are all present for my relevant colours, and the generic taplands from OGW and SOI are also here. However, I’m working with what I have, so I’m not buying more cards just for the sake of it – as such, there are some cards that I could benefit from, if only I had them!
I think, if I were to look at the deck again, potentially thinking about buying cards as “missing pieces” for the deck, I’d probably want to swap out the two artifacts, and the Paragon. I’ve been guilty before of wanting to force in all the Paragons that I can into my decks, but really they’re not always that necessary. I also find myself thinking the Angel of Despair is a bit too expensive, though it is nice to have removal in a deck.
Definitely need to do some more thinking on this one, I think…!