Standard Archetype Breakdown

Posted in Event Coverage on February 26, 2009

By Bill Stark

It is the question on the minds of all at the dawn of a new Pro Tour: what decks will all the pros be playing? After hours of typing and research, your faithful web coverage team is proud to bring you the results.

Boat Brew98
UB Faeries50
Blightning Aggro37
Monowhite Kithkin26
BW Tokens19
RW Kithkin13
Jund Control5
WUR Lark5
Bant Aggro4
BG Elves4
UW Merfolk4
Bant Lark3
Blightningless BR3
BG Control2
Doran Control2
GW Aggro2
Monowhite Tokens2
Naya Aggro2
WUBG Control2
WUBR Lark2
BGW Doran1
BR Tokens1
BW Control1
Grixis Howling Mine Control1
Naya Control1
Naya Elves1
RG Ramp1
RW Control1
UW Lark1

The most popular archetype, by a nearly two-to-one ratio with the second place finisher, is Red-White Reveillark (also called "Boat Brew"). Featuring hits like Figure of Destiny, Fulminator Mage, Knight of the White Orchid, and Mogg Fanatic, the deck has a powerfully aggressive early game tempered by a Wrath of God-resistant end game thanks to Reveillark. Many builds are also powered by Ajani Vengeant, Spectral Procession, and Windbrisk Heights.

In second place is Pro Tour-Hollywood standout Five-Color Control, formerly known as Quik 'N Toast. Banking on the powerful interaction between Reflecting Pool and the Vivid lands, the deck plays virtually any spell it wants. Cloudthresher fights alongside Cryptic Command fights alongside Cruel Ultimatum. Of course, the newly released Conflux has given the deck plenty of added oomph. Players have been seen using the anti-Faeries tech of Volcanic Fallout in their lists, as well as the under-rated Ethersworn Adjudicator.

Rounding out the top five are two aggro decks and an aggro control. Fifty Faeries players have brought the blue-black scourge, hoping to continue riding the back of Bitterblossom and Cryptic Command to steal a Pro Tour victory. Kithkin and the Black-Red Aggro decks will be nipping at their heels, looking to make sure that doesn't happen.

Of course, it wouldn't be a Pro Tour without innovators. A group of players have come to play with similar builds of a Standard Tezzerator list, featuring Esperzoa to gain added advantage a la Stampeding Wildebeests. Rafiq of the Many has been seeing play in some very aggressive Bant Aggro decks, and a good number of well respected Japanese players have shown up with new kid on the block Swans Control.

So which archetype will reign supreme? Tune in all weekend long for live coverage as it happens, here on!

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