This Week in Popculture’s Cube: What’s YOUR Deck Obsession?
What’s YOUR Deck Obsession?
By Peter Kuebeck
It started innocently enough.
I was playing a BW deck on MODO a few years back and discovered the utter power of using Lingering Souls. Just a taste. But a taste was enough.
And thus began my addiction to tokens.
We all have our own deck addiction, or own obsession. We may not like to admit it. We may try to be cosmopolitan and play all deck types. All colors. All strategies.
But, in the end, we always come back to our first love, that first spark when Magic suddenly made sense.
And we forever try to improve upon it. To tinker with it. And we’ll never be satisfied. Ever.
Tokens pretty much define why I love Magic. There’s a mythic, epic, ancient sweep to the idea. The ability to put an army out onto the battlefield. To overrun the barricades of your opponent. Sweeping to victory at the head of a mighty host lives deeply in my memory, mostly because I was raised on epic, double-VHS-tape-boxed-set movies, and played a lot of Risk as a kid. I’m sure that for people who can’t help but play Burn, say, or UB control, there’s a similar itch.
My interest in token decks just kept getting stronger.
About a year ago I bought a playset of all the commons from the Kamigawa block, and was impressed with the number of effective 1/1 flyers. I put together a nice little casual BW aggro that relied on cheap spirits, Lingering Souls, Beckoning Apparitions, and some samurais. While certainly nothing that was going to win any tournaments, it turned out to be an effective “kitchen table” deck.
And so my journey down the rabbit hole went deeper.
Next up: my first-ever EDH, with Obezedat as commander, while not strictly a token deck, was BW and worked on the same kinds of principles.
And now my continuing project: my Modern Token Aggro.
Sometimes it’s Selesnya. Sometimes it’s BW. Sometimes it’s Junk. And I’m thoroughly convinced I’ll never be done with it.
But it always rests on this principal: how do I get the most tokens out, with the fewest resources, in the shortest amount of time?
Currently, it’s mostly Selesnya, splashing black. It’s running Lingering Souls, Voice of Resurgence, Raise the Alarm, Collective Blessing, Armada Wurm, Spectral Procession, and, among other things, Sylvan Caryatid for good measure. But it’s far from finished. I’ve got more lands coming (I just bought a playset of Razorverge Thickets). Maybe I’ll add in Sporemounds. Or Doomed Travelers. Primeval Bounty; Parallel Lives; Hero of Bladehold; Cenn’s Enlistment; Elspeth, Sun’s Champion; Ajani, Mentor of Heroes; Brimaz, King of Oreskos; Doubling Season. They’ve all either been in the deck, or been in contention. It’s a rotating roster of possibilities. Anything’s fair game.
I don’t mean for it to win tournaments. I don’t mean for it to be a breaker of worlds. But I mean for it to represent my vision.
It’s seeped into how I look at cards and sets. The fact that there’s going to be a tribe in Khans of Tarkir that is Junk-colored tickles me to no end. The possibility that Junk tokens could be a viable option in Standard once Return to Ravnice rotates out fills me with glee.
I’m continually looking for cards on StarCityGames or eBay that will fit in with my GWB token ideals. More and more frequently, as EDH looms larger in my Magic-related imagination, I’ve discovered a world of cards that fit the bill pre-Modern that I’m absolutely in love with. Breeding Pit. Night Soil. Decree of Justice. Death Mutation. Wonderful, wonderful stuff. It makes me feel like some sort of mad scientist.
So, tell me, friends: what’s your Deck Obsession? What Magic itch do you continually need to scratch? Let me hear about the deck you’ve always wanted to build – over, and over, and over again.