Low Standard for a Friday Night

This is the first Boy Android column that has been written by someone other than me, Dave Pemberton. If you’re interested in submitting a column of your own on any aspect of nerd culture, please drop me a line.


My name is Joseph Cain and I have been playing MtG for about 15 years casually. My favorite part has always been deck building because I love solving problems and that’s what good deck building is all about. A good deck accomplishes the following things in most cases:

  • Has a clear path to victory with threats and cards that support those threats

  • Cards which keep you in the game such as counter magic, removal, etc.

  • Synergy

  • Appropriate mana sources and a sane curve

  • Exactly 60 cards (I would rather insert a barstool in myself than do a Battle of Wits deck)

While I enjoy playing Spike decks and winning, nothing quite gives me the satisfaction of going undefeated at a Friday Night Magic with a budget deck or a deck with some cards that are underestimated. That’s why the purpose of this weekly article will be deck construction focused on budget decks and decks utilizing overlooked rares, or in some cases just my attempts to break a junk rare. No challenge is too great. Thus the title of the article- I’m playing standard and I have low standards on what is a “good” card and a “good” budget. All for your sadistic enjoyment, dear readers.

I would love deck suggestions from you, but I offer a couple of limitations to those of you brave enough to make a challenge:

  • I only play Standard. Therefore the cards, budget or deck suggestion must be standard legal

  • I reserve the right to ignore ridiculous challenges (i.e. five-color Search the City!)

  • Even when using cheap or junk cards, I will apply good deck building practices to the deck

With all of that being said, here is my goal:

  • First week of each month: I go over all of the challenges and ideas I have received the month before and pick my favorite- the most interesting and fun to my perverse mind.

  • Second week: I design the deck I will use that FNM and present it to you all for your suggestions, ridicule and tomfoolery.

  • Third Week: I give a full report on the deck. The games I played that Friday night, the results, the good, the bad, the ugly. No drawing in. I play out all games.

  • Fourth week: I’ll use this week for general ranting, bs’ing about MtG, guest spots, catching up if I skip a week, whatever.

Joseph Cain - Beast

Joseph Cain – Beast

Sound like a plan? Good! Since obviously I haven’t received any suggestions for this month’s deck I will use the following format for this month: this week I take your suggestions/challenges, next week I present the deck, the week after I post the results. You can send your suggestions one of two ways: post it in the comments section below (this is my preference) or email me at josephcain1981@gmail.com. Suggestions can be for me to build a deck showcasing an overlooked rare, budget constraints, doesn’t matter. I’m excited to hear your ideas and accept your challenges.

Just to get you started, some cards that jump out as good candidates for over looked rares to me include: Tibalt the Fiend-Blooded, Search the City, Teysa Envoy of Ghosts, Ruric Thar The Unbowed, Stuffy Doll, Krenko Mob Boss, things like that.

Hit me up with your ideas and let’s get this train wreck rollin’! Oh and one more thing- if I accept your challenge or build a deck based on a card or theme you suggest and win the following FNM with it, I’ll split the prizes with you 50/50.


19 thoughts on “Low Standard for a Friday Night

  1. I have a challenge for you. Build a pile revolving around this jankery.
    1 Borborygmous Enraged
    4 Mwonvuli Tracker (to tutor)
    4 Axebane Guardian (ramping)
    4 Gatecreeper Vine (to get land for Borborygmous to pitch, and Axebane to ramp with)
    Fill with the appropriate cards to help survive ie. Fog, Druids Deliverance, Searing Spears, etc…
    Have fun with this because it has potential.

    • thanks, Brent! Great suggestion. It definitely would need more than one win condition though and some way to survive getting board wiped

    • I have been trying to come up with some Jank with Notion Thief (Reforge the Soul and Whispering Madness). It’s worth exploring, but it needs more than just that “lock” for sure

    • I really like the idea of a deck with Malignus and Cryptborn Horror in a deck especially with Fling and maybe Reverberate. I don’t know where Rakdos would fit in though. I’m going to toy around with this one.

  2. Joe, you know how I am with decks of this sort. I had this wild idea about using keyrune a. Dimir keyrune is exactly what tar put was except it produce mana turn two.
    Grixis control with keyrunes. Especially with the upcoming swarm of terminus. Sure it worries about decay and putrefy. But so does ever other deck.

    • That sounds very competitive to me. There is no way to do it budget, but I could evej see something like this as tier 1. Why Grixis over Esper?

    • So I played around with this and combining this idea with Aaron’s I was able to do it for under $80 and it play tested well.I think this is the deck I’m going with next week.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s