Surviving the Rapture

Posted in Feature on June 18, 2013

By Sam Black

Sam Black is a Platinum Pro Player and longtime writer for He is a respected deck builder and took over Daily Decks for the first half of 2013.

Hall of Famer Frank Karsten recently tweeted this deck he built, and I think it's a cool enough deck to share with everyone. Or maybe I just can't ignore a Doomed Traveler deck. (Not just a deck with Doomed Traveler, but a deck that's based on playing all the different Doomed Travelers.)

Supreme Verdict

Frank built a GW Aggro deck that's so good against Supreme Verdict he decided it should play its own, and it turns out, it's even better when you can cast it after attacking with Frontline Medic.

The idea is pretty simple. If all the creatures in the deck are great against removal and provide a fast clock, you should be very well positioned against control decks, which will generally seek to kill your creatures—which is not the best way to fight these creatures. If you're playing against a deck with bigger creatures, Supreme Verdict will be excellent against them, and it will probably make most of your creatures better.

The biggest cause for hesitation in the deck is that the mana looks very ambitious. Not only does it want to cast a green or white creature on turn one, it also wants to cast a creature that costs two green or two white on turn two, which can be a pretty tall order if you don't draw Temple Garden. I think there's a reasonable chance that's not that big of a deal because there's so much redundancy among varied costs that, while you might not be able to play Doomed Traveler on turn one and Strangleroot Geist on turn two, you can play Doomed Traveler on turn one, Voice of Resurgence on turn two, and wait until turn three to cast Strangleroot Geist.

The bigger mana issue to me is the number of lands that come into play tapped. Selesnya Guildgate is a pretty serious cost in Standard, but it gets even worse when you also have to play Glacial Fortress. The blue is "free" in that it doesn't decrease the number of white or green sources in the deck, but there's a real cost in terms of lands that come into play tapped.

Still, the fundamental strategy is strong enough that it's probably worth investigating.

Frank recently played a Constructed tournament without a sideboard, and also presented this deck without a sideboard, but I'm pretty sure even he would want one for this deck, as there will certainly be matchups where Supreme Verdict isn't the best card one could have. The sideboard is my suggestion.

Aggro Verdict

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