The January 23, 2017 Update

Posted in Daily Magic Update on January 23, 2017

By Blake Rasmussen

Blake is the content manager for, making him the one you should email if you have thoughts on the website, good or less good (or not good). He's a longtime coverage reporter and hasn't turned down a game of Magic in any format ever.

The Daily Magic Update is a roundup of everything Magic you should know on January 23, 2017. Today's Update is brought to you by Walking Ballista, who walked out of Aether Revolt booster packs and into our hearts this weekend.

What You Might Have Missed Over the Weekend

  1. Columbus Open Weekend

The first major Standard action took place over the weekend, and it was quite enlightening. The Copycat combo—Saheeli Rai and Felidar Guardian—showed up in force, but by the time the quarterfinals were over, there were none left. Instead, green decks loaded with synergy and +1/+1 counters stood atop the field. Walking Ballista, of all cards, positioned itself as the breakout card of Aether Revolt, while Winding Constrictor and Rishkar, Peema Renegade weren't close behind.

You can check out replays of Day One and Day Two as well as the Top 64 decklists to get a more complete feel for the weekend.

  1. The Magic Art of Terese Nielsen | The Magic Man Sam

People are starting to notice these videos a bit more, but The Magic Man Sam is still criminally under-viewed, especially if you're an art lover. The detail, research, and care that go into these are fantastic. This episode concerns itself chiefly with the art of Terese Nielsen, and it was incredibly well-received—including by Nielsen herself!

So check out the video below or visit his YouTube page for more.

  1. Top 10 Most Underrated/Underhyped/Overperforming Cards in Aether Revolt Limited! | The Mana Source | Wedge

I mean, it kicks off with Walking Ballista, so you know it's already aboard the hype train, even if this is a Limited video. Now that we've got some time under our belts drafting the set, opinions are starting to shift on cards up and down the spectrum. These are the cards Wedge thinks didn't get enough press at the get-go, but are definitely earning their stripes now that people have cards in hand.

  1. Deck Tech: Black-Green Counters in Aether Revolt Standard! | StrictlyBetterMTG | Dev

Though the timing on this posting made me initially think he was looking at results, the deck is actually quite different—at least in terms of card choices, if not strategy. Here, Dev walks through his version of a Winding Constrictor/Rishkar, Peema Renegade/Walking Ballista deck and tells you why he thinks his version is one of the best around.

After All That, Read, Watch, or Listen to These

  1. More Aether Revolt–Inspired Decks | Gathering Magic | Abe Sargent

Brewers gotta brew, and Sargent has got brews for days for both Standard and just for fun. You know you want to sleeve up the Indomitable Creativity deck he has inside.

  1. Aether Revolt: The Women's March on Ghirapur | Hipsters of the Coast | Rich Stein

Stein draws parallels between Aether Revolt and the Women's Marches that took place over the weekend. These parallels were completely unintentional, but timely. If only we could see the future that clearly.

What People Are Talking About

The Kaladesh League we tried out with, well, Kaladesh, is coming back for Aether Revolt. Check with your local store for details.

People are very most definitely talking about Walking Ballista. The artifact successor to Triskelion walked tall this weekend thanks to a bevy of +1/+1 counter synergies and its ability to break up the Saheeli Rai-Felidar Guardian combo. It was very good in decks like . . . 

Deck of the Day

  1. Brennan DeCandio's Black-Green Delirium

This isn't your dad's Black-Green Delirium.

More accurately, this isn't the same Black-Green Delirium deck from a few weeks ago. Grim Flayer is still there, as are some Traverse the Ulvenwald and Tireless Tracker, but the rest of the deck is something new entirely.

The list below is the one used by Brennan DeCandio to win the Standard Open this past weekend, and what a win it was. Yes, the deck had to change because Emrakul, the Promised End was, well, ended, but this deck is virtually an Aether Revolt theme deck. Winding Constrictor; Rishkar, Peema Renegade; and Fatal Push all highlight the deck's new toys (and best starts), but the real standout of the entire weekend was Walking Ballista. Between the aforementioned Winding Constrictor and Rishkar, not to mention Verdurous Gearhulk, it's easy to pack counters on the Ballista by the bucketful. From there, picking off planeswalkers, creatures, and life totals becomes elementary.

We're sure to see an uptick in this style of deck in the coming weeks, and we're definitely sure to see more and more of Walking Ballista, so if you're looking for more on the deck, check out this deck tech done by DeCandio.

Black-Green Delirium

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