Ali From Cairo was once restricted in Type 1 for being too powerful, but in 93/94 we can play four of them so of course we should! The thing that makes Ali so powerful is that you essentially become unkillable if he is in play. The problem is that Ali more often than not doesn't stay in play that long, a problem this deck is designed to fix.Read More
The Lands deck can be built in many different ways but something that should always be present is some number of Fastbonds. It should also have something that draws cards so you really can use Fastbond, like draw sevens or Howling Mine. Other than that it can be either a control deck or a combo deck.Read More
This deck is all about mana screwing you opponent completely without even playing a land destruction spell. Instead the game plan revolves around resolving a Living Plane to make all lands creatures. With Living Plane on the table you then start to pick off your opponent’s lands, which are now 1/1 creatures, by pinging them to death with a bunch of different cards. One of the most used ways to kill the lands is Tim, or as he’s actually called Prodigal Sorcerer. Other good cards are Fireball, Pyrotechnics, Rod of Ruin and if you want to be extra evil, Earthquake.
If you go for Earthquake you should build you deck to be able to operate without lands, that means mana dorks, Fellwar Stone and more. However, remember that the opponent also could use cards like that so it’s good to also pack some artifact destruction spells in your deck. Crumble is probably the top choice here as it’s in the main color and because the life doesn’t matter much if the opponent won’t play another spell for the rest of the game.
If you are a little slow to lock down the opponent it’s good to have some removal in the deck. If you play a red version, you can use the same cards that later will kill lands as removal in the early game. You should also think about how you will protect your Living Plane as most cards in your deck will need it to stay around. Either you play blue for counterspells or you could use green’s own counterspell, Avoid Fate.
Some other interesting cards are Drop of Honey and Sandstorm. Both are quite good at handling your opponent’s lands even if Sandstorm is more of a corner case card. And if you can afford it, The Tabernacle of Pendrell Vale is a fun addition. Last but not least Pendelhaven could also be a really good inclusion as it makes your lands bigger than your opponent’s and Instill Energy can make Tim ping twice.
And one more thing, remember that with Living Plane on the battlefield, lands have summoning sickness. So if the opponent doesn't have white mana for his Disenchant he can't just play a Plains and kill your Living Plane. You will have a turn to take care of the pesky land.
When Fork was unrestricted in 2016 people started brewing on many different Fork decks. The most successful use of Fork seemed to be in big red decks like CandleFlare. But the deck that got Fork restricted in the first place in 1995 was this Fork Recursion Combo by Mark Chalice.Read More
Kobolds may not be the best deck in the game but it's still a valid deck that can pack a punch if the draws are with you. The kobolds are a unique tribe full of 0 cost creatures and a bunch of different lords that each boost all the kobolds in different ways.
You have Kobold Drill Sergeant which gives your kobolds +0/+1 and Trample(!), Kobold Overlord which gives them all First Strike and then Kobold Taskmaster which gives them +1/+0. And as the classic 0 mana kobolds all have 0 power the lords are quite important as you may understand. There is also a black and red Legendary lord by the name of Rohgahh of Kher Keep who gives your kobolds +2/+2.
One fun thing is that you actually have three different 0 mana kobolds so if you want, you can play 12 of them in a deck which with the lords make the total red kobold count 24. Then just pair this with Lightning Bolts, Chain Lightning and other burn spells for a fun aggressive deck. Maybe you also can play a couple of Blood Lusts as the Kobolds both gets First Strike and Trample from the lords?
Atog is one of those cards that laid dormant for some time until someone realized it's potential. The Atog deck of course plays a large amount of artifacts, because otherwise the Atog itself is just a 1/2 for two. But exactly which artifacts to play is open for discussions.
Some decks use Mana Vault, Su-Chi and Fireball for some nice synergy. Other decks take a more suicidal route and play a lot of cheap artifacts that first do some damage and then can be sacrificed to deal the finishing blow. Copper Tablets and Ankh of Mishra are probably the most common ones.
It's also common for the Atog decks to play a lot of burn in the form of Lightning bolt and Chain Lightning. If you want to splash another color, green should be high on your list as it gives you access to Berserk, and there are few things as scary as a berserked Atog.
Goblins is one of the few viable tribal decks in the format with both a bunch of different goblins and a lord to rule them all. The deck usually looks a lot like the Sligh deck but instead of going for the perfect mana curve you go all in on goblins and a playset of Goblin King. The best red goblins that you always see in these decks are Goblin Balloon Brigade and Goblins of the Flarg. The reason why they are better than the rest is because both of them have evasion of some sort.
Other goblins you can use are Mons Goblin Raiders, Goblin Digging Team and if you want to splash a color you also have access to Scarwood Goblins and Marsh Goblins. Besides the obvious Goblin King you can also use Gauntlet of Might, Goblin Shrine and Goblin Caves to strengthen you goblins.
If you splash green you can also use Pendelhaven to make your goblins more powerful.
The first Sligh deck was actually created in 1994 so you could say that this is one of the original decks. The name of the deck comes from the first player to have success with the deck, Paul Sligh, even though it was his friend Jay Schneider who built the deck and innovated the game.
Jay's innovation was to realize the importance of the mana curve, actually that concept didn't even exist before Sligh. The idea was that the deck should be able to use all of it's mana every turn in a efficient way so that it could kill the opponent before he or she was able to play all of his or hers expensive powerful cards. Therefore, the Sligh deck usually plays suboptimal cards just to get the curve mathematically correct.
In the 93/94 format the Sligh deck usually is mono red and contains all the good red aggressive cards like Lightning Bolt, Chain Lightning and Ball Lightning. The creatures in the deck may not be the best creatures in the format but they do their job. Classic choices are Goblin Baloon Brigade, Goblins of the Flarg, Ironclaw Orcs, Granite Gargoyle and sometimes Dragon Whelp.
Erhnam Burn'em is a red and green aggro deck that get's its name from the biggest creature in the deck, Erhnam Djinn, and the red part that mostly consists of burn spells. As with many of the decks on this site Erhnam Burn'em can be built in many ways, even without Ernham Djinn if one wants a lower curve.
This deck is also quite popular as it can be very budget friendly; Taiga is one of the cheapest dual lands, the burn is also cheap and except for Erhnam Djinn the creatures is also quite cheap.
And talking about creatures, this deck usually plays cards like Kird Ape, Argothian Pixies, Elvish Archers and of course Erhnam Djinn. To complement the creatures, you find the classic burn suite with Lightning Bolt, Chain Lightning and Fireball. If you want you can also throw in a couple of Berserks and maybe Giant Growths.
The foundation of this deck looks a lot like Deadguy Ale but instead of using white for efficient and versatile removal it goes full aggro with cards like Lightning Bolt and Chain Lightning. As with Deadguy Ale the creature base is made up by the usual black suspects, meaning Black Knight, Hypnotic Specter and Juzam Djinn.
The combination of black and red also gives this deck access to the powerful Sedge Troll. As with most other Juzam decks, those with a tight budget can use Su-Chi instead of Juzam Djinn, or you can choose to build the deck lower to the ground by skipping the 4-drops altogether and instead playing cheaper creatures.
The Zoo deck is one of the most classic decks in magic history and zoo decks are still being played today even in more modern formats. The most famous version of the old school zoo deck is Lestree Zoo which is named after Bertrand Lestree who piloted his zoo deck to the finals in the world’s first ever Magic World Championship in 1994.
There are many variants of zoo and here we are going to focus on the versions that focus in the colors red, green and blue. There is however also a white zoo deck on the site if you want to read about that.
The main plan for this deck is to play a bunch of mana efficient creatures and then use burn to annihilate your enemy as quickly as possible. The creature base is often made up by Kird Apes, Serendib Efreets and Erhnam Djinns and if you only play those the deck is sometimes called Arabian Aggro. Other usual suspects are Argothian Pixies, Whirling Dervish and Elvish Archers. It’s also not uncommon for this deck to play some sort of mana producing creature like Birds of Paradise.
Other cards that often see play are of course burn spells like Lightning Bolt, Chain Lightning and Psionic Blast but you can also choose to play Giant Growth and Berserk. Another card that see quite a bit of play is Ice Storm which can help you keep your opponent of balance long enough for your creatures to finish him or her off. It also helps you with troublesome lands like Mishra’s Factory and Maze of Ith.
The foundation of this deck is a playset of Mana Vaults which are used to power out big creatures as Su-Chi, Juggernaut and Triskelion. The plan is to stick one or more of those big threats early and then ride them to victory while the opponent still builds up their mana or plays creatures that are easily outmatched by yours.
The deck usually also plays a full set of Copy Artifacts which makes it possible to follow up your big threat with a two mana copy even though you've already used your Mana Vault. You can also play Serendib Efreets and cut the Juggernauts to make all your creatures "bolt proof". Another consideration is of course the small but threatening creature Atog.
UR Burn is one of the top decks in the format and can be built in many different configurations. The foundation of the deck usually consists of 4 Serendib Efreet, 4 Lightning Bolt, 4 Chain Lightning and a couple up Psionic Blasts.
The rest of the deck can either be built to maximize the aggressive side with more burn, Electric Eels and/or Flying Men, or it could be built more as a tempo deck by adding counterspells and some control elements. You can also build the deck with some amount of main deck Blood Moons and Energy Fluxes if you want to be a little hateful.
"In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes."
Classic words that fits this deck perfectly! First you tax your opponent with Land Tax and then you make his or her death swift with the help of Land's Edge. Or to put it in Magic terms, you keep your land count lower than the opponents so that you can activate Land Tax over and over again to fill your hand with lands. Then you use Land's Edge to throw those lands at your opponent face. This is the foundation of the deck but the other part you can build in two different ways.
One way to go is to play cards like Swords to Plowshares, Disenchants and Ivory Tower to keep you alive until you can kill your opponent with the combo. The other way to build the deck as an aggro deck with a bunch of small creatures and Lightning Bolts and use the combo as the finisher.
Another card that can be played is Winds of Change, as it lets you exchange the lands in your hand to actual cards.
This deck is all about cast huge fiery X spells right at your opponent's face. In the early game the deck focuses on playing mana ramp like Mana Vault and mana doublers like Mana Flare and Gauntlet of Might. Then, with a mana doubler or two in play the deck can use Candelabra of Tawnos to produce even more mana and when the time is right put all that mana into one or two giant Firaballs.
Another strategy that can be used is bouncing the Candelabra and Mana Vaults with Hurkyl's Recall to "reset" them and produce more mana. Last but not least the Candelabra of Tawnos can also be used with Mishra's Factory, Maze of Ith and Library of Alexandria for some extra value.
You can build this deck without Candelabra of Tawnos and instead go all in on the mana doublers and Forks, then the deck sometimes is called Big Red.
This is a combo deck that utilizes a powerful combo which Wizards actually thought was to powerful and therefore tried to stop on many occasions by issuing different erratas.
The combo works by combining Power Artifact with Basalt Monolith. This makes the Monoliths untap cost become one colorless and as it still taps for three colorless you are able to get infinite mana. This mana is then used to end your opponent with a huge Fireball or sometimes the classic artifact Rocket launcher (but do remember that Rocket Launcher has "summoning sickness").
The rest of the deck can be built in many ways but it usually uses a lot of counterspells to keep you alive and protect the combo. Sometimes the deck is built like a toolbox deck that uses Transmute Artifact to get the right answers or combo pieces like Basalt Monolith and Rocket Launcher.
This deck is all about resolving an Underworld Dreams and then letting your opponent draw themselves to death. Of course that would take some time if you don't help them on their way, therefore you play cards like Wheel of Fortune, Winds of Change and sometimes also Howling Mine. If you want, you can also pair the Howling Mine with Relic Barrier.
The deck usually complements the main plan with a bunch of Lightning Bolts which can be used both as creature removal or for extra reach so that you can finish of the opponent after Underworld Dreams has done its thing.
Sometimes this decks contain a couple of creatures for another angle of attack but it can also be built completely without creatures so you can play a couple of The Abyss.
The one archetype that WOTC hates more than anything else is without a doubt land destruction. That means that they sadly nowadays never ever print good land destruction cards.
Fortunately for us, things were quite different in the 90's and WOTC printed a bunch of nice land destruction cards in 1993 and 1994. Those cards are exactly what the Ponza deck is all about! Ponza is usually a black, red and green deck that include playsets of Sinkhole, Stone Rain and Ice Storm.
The deck's plan is simple, stop your opponent from playing magic by destroying his or her lands. The rest of the deck and the wincons differ but Dark Rituals and evil black creatures is a common way to go. Another card that could be considered is Crumble as it lets the deck destroy moxes as well.
This is THE control deck of the format. It's been around since the beginning of the game and was the best deck for many many years. The core of The Deck is blue and white but it splashes the other three colors to get access to all of the formats most powerful and restricted cards. It then combines those powerful cards with the formats most efficient answers in the form of Counterspell, Disenchant and Swords to Plowshares.
Another very important card is Jayemdae Tome which lets The Deck draw the answers it needs to survive. As wincons the deck usually use cards like Mishra's Factory, Serra Angel, The Hive or something similar.
The Troll part in the name stands for the powerful Sedge Troll, and Disco stands for the disk with tentacles, Nevinyrral's Disk. The decks game plan is to use the disk to blow up the world, except for your trusty trolls that is. The Trolls instead regenerate to fight another day and continues to beat your opponent senseless while all of his or her stuff has been blown to pieces.
That is the core of this deck, but other than that you can build it quite differently using either classic beaters like Hypnotic Specter or go all in on regenerating creatures like Uthden Troll and Clay Statue. If you want you can also splash blue for more control elements if you don't think the disk is enough.