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The New Pauper Standard Season - Craig Larson (4/13/2009)

The new Pauper Standard season is here with the arrival of Conflux
Conflux
ConfluxSet: Conflux
Cost:
8
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
M
Number:
102
Text:
Search your library for a white card, a blue card, a black card, a red card, and a green card. Reveal those cards and put them into your hand. Then shuffle your library.
on Magic Online. The general consensus has been that Conflux
Conflux
ConfluxSet: Conflux
Cost:
8
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
M
Number:
102
Text:
Search your library for a white card, a blue card, a black card, a red card, and a green card. Reveal those cards and put them into your hand. Then shuffle your library.
by and large offers very little aside from a pile of good options for your sideboard and a possible Domain deck. Esper also gets a kick in the pants with a bevy of solid artifact creatures. All in all though, Conflux
Conflux
ConfluxSet: Conflux
Cost:
8
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
M
Number:
102
Text:
Search your library for a white card, a blue card, a black card, a red card, and a green card. Reveal those cards and put them into your hand. Then shuffle your library.
is turning out to be a much more significant addition to the meta than it initially seemed it would.

As far as sideboard options, the Outlanders, erm, outshine everything. When they hit the board against the right deck they stall or put your opponent on a clock like few cards in the format. Given that most removal in the current meta is red or black, Valeron Outlander
Valeron Outlander
Valeron OutlanderSet: Conflux
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
130
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Protection from black
and Vedalken Outlander
Vedalken Outlander
Vedalken OutlanderSet: Conflux
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Vedalken Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
132
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Protection from red
are strong choices that can be maindecked. Zombie Outlander
Zombie Outlander
Zombie OutlanderSet: Conflux
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
133
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Protection from green.
is also extremely effective as the majority of any given tourney is going to consists of decks running green creatures (e.g. Wickerbough Elder
Wickerbough Elder
Wickerbough ElderSet: Eventide
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Treefolk Shaman
Rarity:
C
Number:
80
Artist:
Jesper Ejsing
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Wickerbough Elder comes into play with a -1/-1 counter on it. G, Remove a -1/-1 counter from Wickerbough Elder: Destroy target artifact or enchantment.
, Elves etc).

Gwyned even ran a deck predicated on the idea that Valeron Outlander
Valeron Outlander
Valeron OutlanderSet: Conflux
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
130
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Protection from black
will dodge a lot of removal, and putting a Shield of the Oversoul
Shield of the Oversoul
Shield of the OversoulSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
242
Artist:
Steven Belledin
Text:
Enchant creature As long as enchanted creature is green, it gets +1/+1 and is indestructible. (Lethal damage and effects that say "destroy" don't destroy it. If its toughness is 0 or less, it's still put into its owner's graveyard.) As long as enchanted creature is white, it gets +1/+1 and has flying.
on it effectively shuts out many decks. Throw in some exalted creatures, and you've got a very effective clock.

Here's his build from MPDC 5.02 (Top Eight):

Creatures(25):
3 Akrasan Squire
Akrasan Squire
Akrasan SquireSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Soldier
Rarity:
C
Number:
1
Artist:
Todd Lockwood
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Exalted (Whenever a creature you control attacks alone, that creature gets +1/+1 until end of turn.)

2 Civic Wayfinder
Civic Wayfinder
Civic WayfinderSet: Ravnica City of Guilds
Cost:
3
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elf Warrior Druid
Rarity:
C
Number:
157
Artist:
Cyril Van Der Haegen
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Civic Wayfinder comes into play, you may search your library for a basic land card, reveal it, and put it into your hand. If you do, shuffle your library.

2 Crabapple Cohort
Crabapple Cohort
Crabapple CohortSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Treefolk Warrior
Rarity:
C
Number:
109
Artist:
Richard Whitters
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Crabapple Cohort gets +1/+1 as long as you control another green creature.

3 Mulldrifter
Mulldrifter
MulldrifterSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
C
Number:
76
Artist:
Eric Fortune
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying When Mulldrifter comes into play, draw two cards. Evoke 2U (You may play this spell for its evoke cost. If you do, it's sacrificed when it comes into play.)

3 Rhox Bodyguard
Rhox Bodyguard
Rhox BodyguardSet: Conflux
Cost:
5
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rhino Monk Soldier
Rarity:
C
Number:
122
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
Exalted (Whenever a creature you control attacks alone, that creature gets +1/+1 until end of turn.) When Rhox Bodyguard comes into play, you gain 3 life.

3 Sage Owl
Sage Owl
Sage OwlSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Bird
Rarity:
C
Number:
95
Artist:
Mark Poole
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying When Sage Owl comes into play, look at the top four cards of your library and put them back in any order you choose.

3 Steward of Valeron
Steward of Valeron
Steward of ValeronSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Druid Knight
Rarity:
C
Number:
198
Artist:
Greg Staples
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Vigilance T Add G to your mana pool.

3 Valeron Outlander
Valeron Outlander
Valeron OutlanderSet: Conflux
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
130
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Protection from black

3 Wickerbough Elder
Wickerbough Elder
Wickerbough ElderSet: Eventide
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Treefolk Shaman
Rarity:
C
Number:
80
Artist:
Jesper Ejsing
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Wickerbough Elder comes into play with a -1/-1 counter on it. G, Remove a -1/-1 counter from Wickerbough Elder: Destroy target artifact or enchantment.


Non-Creature(11):
2 Negate
Negate
NegateSet: Morningtide
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
43
Artist:
Jeremy Jarvis
Text:
Counter target noncreature spell.

3 Ponder
Ponder
PonderSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
1
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
79
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Text:
Look at the top three cards of your library, then put them back in any order. You may shuffle your library. Draw a card.

1 U2lnaWwgBlessing
Blessing
BlessingSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Julie Baroh
Text:
W: +1/+1

2 Recumbent Bliss
Recumbent Bliss
Recumbent BlissSet: Eventide
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
13
Artist:
Todd Lockwood
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature can't attack or block. At the beginning of your upkeep, you may gain 1 life.

3 Shield of the Oversoul
Shield of the Oversoul
Shield of the OversoulSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
242
Artist:
Steven Belledin
Text:
Enchant creature As long as enchanted creature is green, it gets +1/+1 and is indestructible. (Lethal damage and effects that say "destroy" don't destroy it. If its toughness is 0 or less, it's still put into its owner's graveyard.) As long as enchanted creature is white, it gets +1/+1 and has flying.


Lands(24):
6 Island
Island
IslandSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add U to your mana pool.

6 Forest
Forest
ForestSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add G to your mana pool.

6 Plains
Plains
PlainsSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add W to your mana pool.

3 Bant Panorama
Bant Panorama
Bant PanoramaSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
0
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Number:
221
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Text:
T Add 1 to your mana pool. 1, T, Sacrifice Bant Panorama: Search your library for a basic Forest, Plains, or Island card and put it into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.

3 Terramorphic Expanse
Terramorphic Expanse
Terramorphic ExpanseSet: Time Spiral
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Number:
279
Artist:
Dan Scott
Text:
T, Sacrifice Terramorphic Expanse: Search your library for a basic land card and put it into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.


Sideboard
2 Boomerang
Boomerang
BoomerangSet: Fifth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Alan Rabinowitz
Text:
Return target permanent to owner's hand.

2 Naturalize
Naturalize
NaturalizeSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
275
Artist:
Ron Spears
Text:
Destroy target artifact or enchantment.

2 Negate
Negate
NegateSet: Morningtide
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
43
Artist:
Jeremy Jarvis
Text:
Counter target noncreature spell.

2 Oblivion Ring
Oblivion Ring
Oblivion RingSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
C
Number:
34
Artist:
Wayne England
Text:
When Oblivion Ring comes into play, remove another target nonland permanent from the game. When Oblivion Ring leaves play, return the removed card to play under its owner's control.

2 Recumbent Bliss
Recumbent Bliss
Recumbent BlissSet: Eventide
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
13
Artist:
Todd Lockwood
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature can't attack or block. At the beginning of your upkeep, you may gain 1 life.

2 Relic of Progenitus
Relic of Progenitus
Relic of ProgenitusSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
1
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
C
Number:
218
Artist:
Jean-Sébastien Rossbach
Text:
T Target player removes a card in his or her graveyard from the game. 1, Remove Relic of Progenitus from the game: Remove all graveyards from the game. Draw a card.

3 Scattershot Archer
Scattershot Archer
Scattershot ArcherSet: Conflux
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elf Archer
Rarity:
C
Number:
90
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
T Scattershot Archer deals 1 damage to each creature with flying.


Given how early in the season this is, Gwyned's build is obviously somewhat unfocused and needs some tuning. Running only three Mulldrifter
Mulldrifter
MulldrifterSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
C
Number:
76
Artist:
Eric Fortune
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying When Mulldrifter comes into play, draw two cards. Evoke 2U (You may play this spell for its evoke cost. If you do, it's sacrificed when it comes into play.)
s is obviously not optimal, and you have to question why he's only playing two of some cards. That being said, the concept is solid, and if you're anticipating a meta that is filled with decks reliant on black removal this is a good choice, and you should expect to see it in further tourneys. It should also be noted that the deck is run without exalted creatures under the title ´´Shield of Valeron´´ or ´´Force of Valeron´´ and both builds are equally, if not more, effective in the current meta. Both are run as Green-White decks, and interestingly enough can afford to forgo four lands in favor of four copies Safewright Quest
Safewright Quest
Safewright QuestSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
240
Artist:
Dan Scott
Text:
Search your library for a Forest or Plains card, reveal it, and put it into your hand. Then shuffle your library.
, which manages to fix mana and thin your deck at the cost of a small amount of tempo.

Gwyned's sideboard showcases the problems that arise from trying to deal with every deck under the sun, and could be condensed considerably. Scattershot Archer
Scattershot Archer
Scattershot ArcherSet: Conflux
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elf Archer
Rarity:
C
Number:
90
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
T Scattershot Archer deals 1 damage to each creature with flying.
is a nice inclusion though, as there are a lot of 1/1 fliers and the archer heavily punishes players four using them. Otherwise a lot of the cards should be in the maindeck, and Relic of Progenitus
Progenitus
ProgenitusSet: Conflux
Cost:
10
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Legendary Creature
Sub Type:
Hydra Avatar
Rarity:
M
Number:
121
Power:
10
Toughness:
10
Text:
Protection from everything If Progenitus would be put into a graveyard from anywhere, reveal Progenitus and shuffle it into its owner's library instead.
should never be played with less than three copies, as you just don't draw it often enough with less.


After playing around with and playing against domain decks, it's becoming pretty obvious that they are solid contenders.

Here is a preliminary list by Bodeddie from MPDC 5.01 (Top Four):

Creatures(23):
4 Mulldrifter
Mulldrifter
MulldrifterSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
C
Number:
76
Artist:
Eric Fortune
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying When Mulldrifter comes into play, draw two cards. Evoke 2U (You may play this spell for its evoke cost. If you do, it's sacrificed when it comes into play.)

4 Aven Squire
Aven Squire
Aven SquireSet: Conflux
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Bird Soldier
Rarity:
C
Number:
3
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying Exalted (Whenever a creature you control attacks alone, that creature gets +1/+1 until end of turn.)

3 Wild Nacatl
Wild Nacatl
Wild NacatlSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Cat Warrior
Rarity:
C
Number:
152
Artist:
Wayne Reynolds
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Wild Nacatl gets +1/+1 as long as you control a Mountain. Wild Nacatl gets +1/+1 as long as you control a Plains.

4 Civic Wayfinder
Civic Wayfinder
Civic WayfinderSet: Ravnica City of Guilds
Cost:
3
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elf Warrior Druid
Rarity:
C
Number:
157
Artist:
Cyril Van Der Haegen
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Civic Wayfinder comes into play, you may search your library for a basic land card, reveal it, and put it into your hand. If you do, shuffle your library.

4 Matca Rioters
Matca Rioters
Matca RiotersSet: Conflux
Cost:
3
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Warrior
Rarity:
C
Number:
84
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Domain - Matca Rioters's power and toughness are each equal to the number of basic land types among lands you control.

4 Aven Trailblazer
Aven Trailblazer
Aven TrailblazerSet: Conflux
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Bird Soldier
Rarity:
C
Number:
4
Power:
2
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying Domain - Aven Trailblazer's toughness is equal to the number of basic land types among lands you control.


Non-Creature(16):
4 Agony Warp
Agony Warp
Agony WarpSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
153
Artist:
Dave Allsop
Text:
Target creature gets -3/-0 until end of turn. Target creature gets -0/-3 until end of turn.

3 Fiery Fall
Fiery Fall
Fiery FallSet: Conflux
Cost:
6
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
63
Text:
Fiery Fall deals 5 damage to target creature. Basic landcycling 1R (1R, Discard this card: Search your library for a basic land card, reveal it, and put it into your hand. Then shuffle your library.)

2 Armillary Sphere
Armillary Sphere
Armillary SphereSet: Conflux
Cost:
2
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
C
Number:
134
Text:
2, T, Sacrifice Armillary Sphere: Search your library for up to two basic land cards, reveal them, and put them into your hand. Then shuffle your library.

3 Exploding Borders
Exploding Borders
Exploding BordersSet: Conflux
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
106
Text:
Domain - Search your library for a basic land card, put that card into play tapped, then shuffle your library. Exploding Borders deals X damage to target player, where X is the number of basic land types among lands you control.

4 Drag Down
Drag Down
Drag DownSet: Conflux
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
42
Text:
Domain - Target creature gets -1/-1 until end of turn for each basic land type among lands you control.


Lands(21):
4 Plains
Plains
PlainsSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add W to your mana pool.

4 Terramorphic Expanse
Terramorphic Expanse
Terramorphic ExpanseSet: Time Spiral
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Number:
279
Artist:
Dan Scott
Text:
T, Sacrifice Terramorphic Expanse: Search your library for a basic land card and put it into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.

3 Island
Island
IslandSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add U to your mana pool.

3 Swamp
Swamp
SwampSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add B to your mana pool.

4 Forest
Forest
ForestSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add G to your mana pool.

3 Mountain
Mountain
MountainSet: Arabian Nights
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Douglas Shuler
Text:
Tap to add R to your mana pool.



Sideboard
4 Festercreep
Festercreep
FestercreepSet: Morningtide
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
C
Number:
62
Artist:
Jeff Easley
Power:
0
Toughness:
0
Text:
Festercreep comes into play with a +1/+1 counter on it.1B, Remove a +1/+1 counter from Festercreep: All other creatures get -1/-1 until end of turn.

3 Terror
Terror
TerrorSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Ron Spencer
Text:
Buries target creature. Cannot target black creatures or artifact creatures.

4 Recumbent Bliss
Recumbent Bliss
Recumbent BlissSet: Eventide
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
13
Artist:
Todd Lockwood
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature can't attack or block. At the beginning of your upkeep, you may gain 1 life.

4 Relic of Progenitus
Relic of Progenitus
Relic of ProgenitusSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
1
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
C
Number:
218
Artist:
Jean-Sébastien Rossbach
Text:
T Target player removes a card in his or her graveyard from the game. 1, Remove Relic of Progenitus from the game: Remove all graveyards from the game. Draw a card.



The obvious goal is to hit domain (i.e. having one of each land type in play under your control),drop Rioters and Nacatls to beat your opponent and follow it up with Exploding Borders
Exploding Borders
Exploding BordersSet: Conflux
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
106
Text:
Domain - Search your library for a basic land card, put that card into play tapped, then shuffle your library. Exploding Borders deals X damage to target player, where X is the number of basic land types among lands you control.
. Drag Down
Drag Down
Drag DownSet: Conflux
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
42
Text:
Domain - Target creature gets -1/-1 until end of turn for each basic land type among lands you control.
and Agony Warp
Agony Warp
Agony WarpSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
153
Artist:
Dave Allsop
Text:
Target creature gets -3/-0 until end of turn. Target creature gets -0/-3 until end of turn.
are solid removal options, and given the typically high toughness of your creatures, they frequently allow you to win the combat step.

Fiery Fall
Fiery Fall
Fiery FallSet: Conflux
Cost:
6
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
63
Text:
Fiery Fall deals 5 damage to target creature. Basic landcycling 1R (1R, Discard this card: Search your library for a basic land card, reveal it, and put it into your hand. Then shuffle your library.)
landcycles most of the time, but this slot is really up for grabs. Lately though, decks are leaning towards Absorb
Absorb
AbsorbSet: Invasion
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
226
Artist:
Andrew Goldhawk
Text:
Counter target spell. You gain 3 life.
IFZpcw==. The reach you get with it and Exploding Borders
Exploding Borders
Exploding BordersSet: Conflux
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
106
Text:
Domain - Search your library for a basic land card, put that card into play tapped, then shuffle your library. Exploding Borders deals X damage to target player, where X is the number of basic land types among lands you control.
allows you to end games even if your opponent manages to stabilize.

The sideboard is also more or less up in the air, and is pretty much a pile of old standbys. There's obvious room for improvement, but again, this is a deck you should expect to face.


Domain can also run a variety of protection bears given the flexibility the mana base gives you. Joekewwel even managed to take second at MPDC 5.03 running Valeron Outlander
Valeron Outlander
Valeron OutlanderSet: Conflux
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
130
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Protection from black
and Shield of the Oversoul
Shield of the Oversoul
Shield of the OversoulSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
242
Artist:
Steven Belledin
Text:
Enchant creature As long as enchanted creature is green, it gets +1/+1 and is indestructible. (Lethal damage and effects that say "destroy" don't destroy it. If its toughness is 0 or less, it's still put into its owner's graveyard.) As long as enchanted creature is white, it gets +1/+1 and has flying.
in his build. Because of this I've been skeptical of the value black removal has in this meta, and decks dependent on it. So until recently I was pretty down on Ostlyn's Black-Blue aggro deck he titled ´´Strix Alchemy´´.

Here's his build from MPDC 5.01 (top eight):

Creatures(25):
3 Gravedigger
Gravedigger
GravediggerSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie
Rarity:
C
Number:
134
Artist:
Dermot Power
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Gravedigger comes into play, you may return target creature card from your graveyard to your hand.

3 Mulldrifter
Mulldrifter
MulldrifterSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
C
Number:
76
Artist:
Eric Fortune
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying When Mulldrifter comes into play, draw two cards. Evoke 2U (You may play this spell for its evoke cost. If you do, it's sacrificed when it comes into play.)

4 Parasitic Strix
Parasitic Strix
Parasitic StrixSet: Conflux
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Bird
Rarity:
C
Number:
32
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying When Parasitic Strix comes into play, if you control a black permanent, target player loses 2 life and you gain 2 life.

4 Sedraxis Alchemist
Sedraxis Alchemist
Sedraxis AlchemistSet: Conflux
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie Wizard
Rarity:
C
Number:
54
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Sedraxis Alchemist comes into play, if you control a blue permanent, return target nonland permanent to its owner's hand.

4 Tidehollow Strix
Tidehollow Strix
Tidehollow StrixSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Bird
Rarity:
C
Number:
203
Artist:
Cyril Van Der Haegen
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying Deathtouch (Whenever this creature deals damage to a creature, destroy that creature.)

3 Warren Pilferers
Warren Pilferers
Warren PilferersSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Goblin Rogue
Rarity:
C
Number:
146
Artist:
Wayne Reynolds
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
When Warren Pilferers comes into play, return target creature card from your graveyard to your hand. If that card is a Goblin card, Warren Pilferers gains haste until end of turn.

4 Zombie Outlander
Zombie Outlander
Zombie OutlanderSet: Conflux
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
133
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Protection from green.


Non-Creature(12):
1 Snakeform
Snakeform
SnakeformSet: Eventide
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
161
Artist:
Jim Nelson
Text:
Target creature loses all abilities and becomes a 1/1 green Snake until end of turn. Draw a card.

4 Agony Warp
Agony Warp
Agony WarpSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
153
Artist:
Dave Allsop
Text:
Target creature gets -3/-0 until end of turn. Target creature gets -0/-3 until end of turn.

3 Turn to Mist
Turn to Mist
Turn to MistSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
155
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Remove target creature from the game. Return that card to play under its owner's control at end of turn.

4 Unmake
Unmake
UnmakeSet: Eventide
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Steven Belledin
Text:
Remove target creature from the game.


Lands(23):
7 Island
Island
IslandSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add U to your mana pool.

10 Swamp
Swamp
SwampSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add B to your mana pool.

1 Esper Panorama
Esper Panorama
Esper PanoramaSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
0
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Number:
223
Artist:
Franz Vohwinkel
Text:
T Add 1 to your mana pool. 1, T, Sacrifice Esper Panorama: Search your library for a basic Plains, Island, or Swamp card and put it into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.

1 Grixis Panorama
Grixis Panorama
Grixis PanoramaSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
0
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Number:
224
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Text:
T Add 1 to your mana pool. 1, T, Sacrifice Grixis Panorama: Search your library for a basic Island, Swamp, or Mountain card and put it into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.

4 Terramorphic Expanse
Terramorphic Expanse
Terramorphic ExpanseSet: Time Spiral
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Number:
279
Artist:
Dan Scott
Text:
T, Sacrifice Terramorphic Expanse: Search your library for a basic land card and put it into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.


Sideboard
4 Festercreep
Festercreep
FestercreepSet: Morningtide
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
C
Number:
62
Artist:
Jeff Easley
Power:
0
Toughness:
0
Text:
Festercreep comes into play with a +1/+1 counter on it.1B, Remove a +1/+1 counter from Festercreep: All other creatures get -1/-1 until end of turn.

3 Negate
Negate
NegateSet: Morningtide
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
43
Artist:
Jeremy Jarvis
Text:
Counter target noncreature spell.

3 Phyrexian Rager
Phyrexian Rager
Phyrexian RagerSet: Apocalypse
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Horror
Rarity:
C
Number:
49
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Phyrexian Rager comes into play, you draw a card and you lose 1 life.

3 Relic of Progenitus
Relic of Progenitus
Relic of ProgenitusSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
1
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
C
Number:
218
Artist:
Jean-Sébastien Rossbach
Text:
T Target player removes a card in his or her graveyard from the game. 1, Remove Relic of Progenitus from the game: Remove all graveyards from the game. Draw a card.

1 Snakeform
Snakeform
SnakeformSet: Eventide
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
161
Artist:
Jim Nelson
Text:
Target creature loses all abilities and becomes a 1/1 green Snake until end of turn. Draw a card.

1 Turn to Mist
Turn to Mist
Turn to MistSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
155
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Remove target creature from the game. Return that card to play under its owner's control at end of turn.


Ostlyn also created ´´It's just a Flesh Wound´´, and this deck is based upon that, but he added Parasitic Strix
Parasitic Strix
Parasitic StrixSet: Conflux
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Bird
Rarity:
C
Number:
32
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying When Parasitic Strix comes into play, if you control a black permanent, target player loses 2 life and you gain 2 life.
, and Sedraxis Alchemist
Sedraxis Alchemist
Sedraxis AlchemistSet: Conflux
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie Wizard
Rarity:
C
Number:
54
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Sedraxis Alchemist comes into play, if you control a blue permanent, return target nonland permanent to its owner's hand.
to capitalize on more comes into play effects. Zombie Outlander
Zombie Outlander
Zombie OutlanderSet: Conflux
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
133
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Protection from green.
and Tidehollow Strix
Tidehollow Strix
Tidehollow StrixSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Bird
Rarity:
C
Number:
203
Artist:
Cyril Van Der Haegen
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying Deathtouch (Whenever this creature deals damage to a creature, destroy that creature.)
are both aggressive, nigh on unblockable creatures which give the deck the option to frequently play as the beats, and are equally effective on defense.

Navisd ran an updated version in MPDC 5.03 which featured Helm of the Ghastlord
Helm of the Ghastlord
Helm of the GhastlordSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
5
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
166
Artist:
Franz Vohwinkel
Text:
Enchant creature As long as enchanted creature is blue, it gets +1/+1 and has "Whenever this creature deals damage to an opponent, draw a card." As long as enchanted creature is black, it gets +1/+1 and has "Whenever this creature deals damage to an opponent, that player discards a card."
and Gravegill Duo to make the deck aggro out better, and took fourth place with this strategy. It's arguable as to which build is better, but given that the current meta is almost all aggro, being able to push for a faster win seems like the more favorable strategy. The first thing to go when considering this direction is Gravedigger
Gravedigger
GravediggerSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie
Rarity:
C
Number:
134
Artist:
Dermot Power
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Gravedigger comes into play, you may return target creature card from your graveyard to your hand.
. Four drops don't make for an aggressive play, and the recursion engine loses importance when you're trying to aggro out. Brackwater Elemental
Brackwater Elemental
Brackwater ElementalSet: Conflux
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
C
Number:
21
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
When Brackwater Elemental attacks or blocks, sacrifice it at end of turn. Unearth 2U (2U: Return this card from your graveyard to play. It gains haste. Remove it from the game at end of turn or if it would leave play. Unearth only as a sorcery.)
is my choice, but what goes in the slot is pretty arguable.

The sideboard isn't set, but Consign to Dream
Consign to Dream
Consign to DreamSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
32
Artist:
Richard Kane Ferguson
Text:
Return target permanent to its owner's hand. If that permanent is red or green, put it on top of its owner's library instead.
is without a doubt an automatic inclusion. It slows down so many decks,and gives you a very effective out to decks reliant on god auras (the cycle of hybrid creature enchantments in Shadowmoor), especially Shield of the Oversoul
Shield of the Oversoul
Shield of the OversoulSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
242
Artist:
Steven Belledin
Text:
Enchant creature As long as enchanted creature is green, it gets +1/+1 and is indestructible. (Lethal damage and effects that say "destroy" don't destroy it. If its toughness is 0 or less, it's still put into its owner's graveyard.) As long as enchanted creature is white, it gets +1/+1 and has flying.
. Negate
Negate
NegateSet: Morningtide
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
43
Artist:
Jeremy Jarvis
Text:
Counter target noncreature spell.
is also pretty solid as it reliably deals with a variety of threats (including god auras) and gives you a defense against removal heavy decks. Relic of Progenitus
Relic of Progenitus
Relic of ProgenitusSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
1
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
C
Number:
218
Artist:
Jean-Sébastien Rossbach
Text:
T Target player removes a card in his or her graveyard from the game. 1, Remove Relic of Progenitus from the game: Remove all graveyards from the game. Draw a card.
still just as effective as it was pre-Conflux
Conflux
ConfluxSet: Conflux
Cost:
8
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
M
Number:
102
Text:
Search your library for a white card, a blue card, a black card, a red card, and a green card. Reveal those cards and put them into your hand. Then shuffle your library.
, and the rest of the board is meta dependent.


Finally, the last deck which is making waves is ´´Mono-White Hybrid´´, and it didn't receive anything from Conflux
Conflux
ConfluxSet: Conflux
Cost:
8
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
M
Number:
102
Text:
Search your library for a white card, a blue card, a black card, a red card, and a green card. Reveal those cards and put them into your hand. Then shuffle your library.
. It's just well situated in a meta almost devoid of Red Deck Wins or Dominus Deck Wins style decks.

Here is Gavin's List which won SPDC 8.02:

Creatures(23):
3 Angelic Wall
Angelic Wall
Angelic WallSet: Portal Second Age
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Wall
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Rebecca Guay
Power:
0
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying Walls can't attack.

4 Ballynock Cohort
Ballynock Cohort
Ballynock CohortSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Kithkin Soldier
Rarity:
C
Number:
3
Artist:
Jesper Ejsing
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
First strike Ballynock Cohort gets +1/+1 as long as you control another white creature.

4 Beckon Apparition
Beckon Apparition
Beckon ApparitionSet: Eventide
Cost:
1
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
82
Artist:
Larry MacDougall
Text:
Remove target card in a graveyard from the game. Put a 1/1 white and black Spirit creature token with flying into play.

4 Harvest Gwyllion
Harvest Gwyllion
Harvest GwyllionSet: Eventide
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Hag
Rarity:
C
Number:
90
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Power:
2
Toughness:
4
Text:
Wither (This deals damage to creatures in the form of -1/-1 counters.)

4 Nightsky Mimic
Nightsky Mimic
Nightsky MimicSet: Eventide
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Shapeshifter
Rarity:
C
Number:
91
Artist:
Franz Vohwinkel
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Whenever you play a spell that's both white and black, Nightsky Mimic becomes 4/4 and gains flying until end of turn.

4 Nip Gwyllion
Nip Gwyllion
Nip GwyllionSet: Eventide
Cost:
1
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Hag
Rarity:
C
Number:
92
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Lifelink (Whenever this creature deals damage, you gain that much life.)


Non-Creature(19):
4 Edge of the Divinity
Edge of the Divinity
Edge of the DivinitySet: Eventide
Cost:
1
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
87
Artist:
Dan Scott
Text:
Enchant creature As long as enchanted creature is white, it gets +1/+2. As long as enchanted creature is black, it gets +2/+1.

3 Oblivion Ring
Oblivion Ring
Oblivion RingSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
C
Number:
34
Artist:
Wayne England
Text:
When Oblivion Ring comes into play, remove another target nonland permanent from the game. When Oblivion Ring leaves play, return the removed card to play under its owner's control.

4 Recumbent Bliss
Recumbent Bliss
Recumbent BlissSet: Eventide
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
13
Artist:
Todd Lockwood
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature can't attack or block. At the beginning of your upkeep, you may gain 1 life.

4 Unmake
Unmake
UnmakeSet: Eventide
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Steven Belledin
Text:
Remove target creature from the game.

4 Double Cleave
Double Cleave
Double CleaveSet: Eventide
Cost:
2
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
135
Artist:
rk post
Text:
Target creature gains double strike until end of turn. (It deals both first-strike and regular combat damage.)


Lands(18):
18 Plains
Plains
PlainsSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add W to your mana pool.


Sideboard
4 Barrenton Cragtreads
Barrenton Cragtreads
Barrenton CragtreadsSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
6
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Kithkin Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
138
Artist:
Daren Bader
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Barrenton Cragtreads can't be blocked by red creatures.

4 Kithkin Zealot
Kithkin Zealot
Kithkin ZealotSet: Eventide
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Kithkin Cleric
Rarity:
C
Number:
9
Artist:
Scott Altmann
Power:
1
Toughness:
3
Text:
When Kithkin Zealot comes into play, you gain 1 life for each black and/or red permanent target opponent controls.

4 Relic of Progenitus
Relic of Progenitus
Relic of ProgenitusSet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
1
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
C
Number:
218
Artist:
Jean-Sébastien Rossbach
Text:
T Target player removes a card in his or her graveyard from the game. 1, Remove Relic of Progenitus from the game: Remove all graveyards from the game. Draw a card.

3 Wispmare
Wispmare
WispmareSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
C
Number:
48
Artist:
Eric Fortune
Power:
1
Toughness:
3
Text:
Flying When Wispmare comes into play, destroy target enchantment. Evoke W (You may play this spell for its evoke cost. If you do, it's sacrificed when it comes into play.)



If you can't see where the deck is going, you probably don't know the cards at all. 4/4 fliers tend to be very hard to deal with in this format, especially when they're black. Given that there are eight one-drops which can pick up Edge of the Divinity
Edge of the Divinity
Edge of the DivinitySet: Eventide
Cost:
1
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
87
Artist:
Dan Scott
Text:
Enchant creature As long as enchanted creature is white, it gets +1/+2. As long as enchanted creature is black, it gets +2/+1.
, you can frequently be swinging for as much as eight on turn three. But even with such a fast start it can be fragile, especially to instant speed spot removal. Magma Spray
Magma Spray
Magma SpraySet: Shards Of Alara
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
108
Artist:
Jarreau Wimberly
Text:
Magma Spray deals 2 damage to target creature. If that creature would be put into a graveyard this turn, remove it from the game instead.
, for example, can stop the deck in its track. On the other hand, it runs a pile of virtually unconditional removal, and some solid defensive creatures (Harvest Gwyllion
Harvest Gwyllion
Harvest GwyllionSet: Eventide
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Hag
Rarity:
C
Number:
90
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Power:
2
Toughness:
4
Text:
Wither (This deals damage to creatures in the form of -1/-1 counters.)
and Angelic Wall
Angelic Wall
Angelic WallSet: Portal Second Age
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Wall
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Rebecca Guay
Power:
0
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying Walls can't attack.
), so it can stabilize even if the initial assault is shot down.

The sideboard seems to be gravitating towards attempting to deal with god auras, burn, recursion, and protection bears, and is no way set in stone. Barrenton Cragtreads
Barrenton Cragtreads
Barrenton CragtreadsSet: Shadowmoor
Cost:
6
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Kithkin Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
138
Artist:
Daren Bader
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Barrenton Cragtreads can't be blocked by red creatures.
is out and in its place is God knows what. Probably Moonglove Extract
Moonglove Extract
Moonglove ExtractSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
C
Number:
258
Artist:
Terese Nielsen
Text:
Sacrifice Moonglove Extract: Moonglove Extract deals 2 damage to target creature or player.
for extra reach and one more way to deal with protection bears.


So if you're looking to play some Pauper Standard, given the current meta, any of the aforementioned decks are solid choices. Given the current card pool and how early in the season we are, there's still plenty of room for innovation, so even home brews have a good chance of success. Personally, I'll be running Strix Alchemy to make up for badmouthing it, and because it's a blast to play. So head on over to PDCmagic.com if you're interested in the format and /join PDC on Magic Online. The last MPDC had thirty four players, so you won't be the only new player, so just give it a try if nothing else.


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