July 27, 2015

Standard White-Blue Artificer Control

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Last weekend was the SCG Open in Chicago, the first premier Standard event where Magic Origins was legal for sanctioned play. I saw a lot of interesting decks while I was watching the coverage, but one of the coolest decks I saw was a White-Blue Control deck piloted by Jeff Hoogland. This deck looked exciting, and it was really fun watching Jeff play the deck to a seventh-place finish.

The most innovative card in this deck is Hangarback Walker, and Jeff is playing a full set of four. This little guy is extremely versatile. When evaluating this card, it's important to not think of him as a six-mana 3/3 or an eight-mana 4/4. He is actually a two-mana 1/1 that just gets bigger the longer the game goes. In Jeff's deck, he can drop this guy on turn two and just pump him every turn. When the time is right he can cast End Hostilities to kill everything on the battlefield and cash in his Hangarback Walker for a bunch of Thopters. It also has great synergy with Thopter Spy Network, another amazing card in this deck.

Jeff also chose to play a lot of great utility spells from Magic Origins. Swift Reckoning is practically a two-mana Doom Blade. Spell mastery will usually be active in this deck, allowing you to cast this spell with flash quite often. I also really like Artificer's Epiphany. Divination has not been in Standard in a while, and this spell is a Divination at instant speed most of the time.

Out of the sideboard, Jeff chose to play Displacement Wave as an additional sweeper. This card is a little slow, but it's a great reset button against decks like Red-Green Devotion or any deck playing Dragon Fodder or Hordeling Outburst. Keep in mind that you can bounce a Genesis Hydra when X=2 for Displacement Wave, because Genesis Hydra has a converted mana cost of 2 regardless of what was paid for it.

Jeff Hoogland's White-Blue Artificer Control



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