Disclaimer: This one’s gonna be big on Magic the Gathering speak. You’ve been warned. If that’s your thing, I’d strongly advise you download Autocard Anywhere.
I can’t be bothered turning off the MtG Grand Prix Omaha stream, so I’m gonna talk about it instead. Streaming pro MtG has been a great way to kill time on weekends. I’m starting to understand how Nascar fans feel. The format had been pretty stale for a while, but the bannings of Felidar Guardian and Saheeli Rai have opened things up a bit. The first few weeks were a lot of Mardu Vehicles vs Temur Marvel (a deck that spins Aetherworks Marvel to find Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger on turn four). Then Zombies edged in and now BG Delirium is making a comeback. In short, the format is getting more interesting (with the exception of Aetherworks Marvel being the boogieman of the format).
Right now though, I’m totally in love with Sam Black’s Anointed Procession deck. It looks like a total pile, but in reality it’s a rogue deck stuffed full of synergies. It takes advantage of the format’s lack of preparation to deal with enchantments and really doubles down. The thing to keep in mind is that Anointed Procession doubles all tokens, which includes clue tokens too. To take advantage of this, not only has the surprising all star (hey now) Thraben Inspector earned a slot, but from out of nowhere he’s giving draft chaff Ulvenwald Mysteries a go. So Anointed Procession doubles the clue tokens that Thraben Inspector makes, but the Inspector also offers a corpse for Ulvenwald Mysteries to investigate. Upon cashing in the clue, Ulvenwald Mysteries adds two 1/1 tokens. God forbid two Ulvenwald Mysteries hit the board, because things get nuts.
There’s a ton of draft chaff, to be honest. As dumb as it sounds, Anointer Priest helps slow the bleeding against aggro decks. I wouldn’t believe it if I hadn’t seen it with mine own two eyes. Blisterpod gets in there as a one drop who can trade in for a one shot accelerator. Oh, and Hidden Stockpile, if you were worried things were getting a bit too heated there. It’s not even all jank. There’s room for both Oketra the True and Bontu the Glorified, plus Gideon, Ally of Zendikar pulls double duty making 2/2 knights and an anthem emblem.
The glue holding everything together is Cryptolith Rite. I’ve always loved the card, but goddamn if it isn’t absurd in here. While it’s no Earthcraft, Cryptolith Rite allows the deck to go apeshit, sacrificing clue tokens (to make even more 1/1 dudes) and using the abilities of both Bontu and Oketra. Then if he needed another angle, he runs Westvale Abbey to pump out a hasty Ormendahl, Profane Prince from nowhere.
The deck doesn’t have a ton of resistance against an all out air assault, but on the ground it does an amazing job of gumming up the works. You’d think that it’d fold outright to wraths, but that isn’t the case. Between Ulvenwald Mysteries cashing in dudes for clues and clues for dudes, the indestructible gods, Hidden Stockpile, Gideon and Anointer Priest’s embalm ability, it can build back up without completely falling to shit.
I don’t see the deck winning the tourney (especially since as of now it’s going 5-2), but it’s nice to see innovation coming up against a field of Aetherworks Marvel and showing them how durdling gets done. C’mon Sam, bring this standard environment back into the Black.