Vintage Fro-Bots

Posted in Daily Deck on July 16, 2015

By Melissa DeTora

Melissa is a former Magic pro player and strategy writer who is now working in R&D on the Play Design team.

One thing I love about Magic Online is that you can play any format at any time. Most Magic players can't play Vintage, because they just don't have the means to acquire the highly sought after "Power Nine[1]." It's a whole different story on Magic Online, however. Extremely rare cards like the Power Nine, Mana Crypt, Mishra's Workshop, and many others are readily available, making the Vintage format much easier to get into digitally than in face-to-face Magic.

Today's deck is a Vintage deck that is an innovative take on a classic Vintage archetype usually known as Stax. The name came about because it used to play Smokestack. The deck archetype consists of artifact mana as well as a lot of "lock out" cards like Chalice of the Void, Lodestone Golem, and Sphere of Resistance. The idea behind the deck is to play a ton of mana acceleration and then spells that make your opponent's spells cost more. Combine that with Wasteland and Strip Mine and your opponent will never have enough lands to play their spells, thus locking them out of the game.

Montolio's take on the deck earned him a 4-0 finish in a Magic Online Vintage Daily. This version is a little different from traditional Stax decks. Instead of large artifact creatures like Steel Hellkite or Duplicant, this deck plays smaller creatures like Arcbound Ravager and Phyrexian Revoker. Low mana creatures are a smart move, as you can usually cast one early and attack with it until the game ends. Arcbound Ravager is especially strong, because as the game goes on you will likely have lots of artifacts in play that are no longer useful—like Tangle Wire or the Moxen.

The Vintage metagame is full of creatures like Young Pyromancer and Snapcaster Mage, so Sword of Fire and Ice is another nice addition to this deck. Even Batterskull—a card that usually only makes an appearance alongside Stoneforge Mystic—is good here because it's pretty easy for you to accelerate to five mana with this deck.

Montolio's Fro-Bots

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[1] The Power Nine are nine cards from Alpha, Beta, and Unlimited that are widely considered to be the most powerful cards ever printed. These cards are: Ancestral Recall, Black Lotus, Mox Emerald, Mox Jet, Mox Pearl, Mox Ruby, Mox Sapphire, Timetwister, and Time Walk.

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