6, Apr, 22

Are You Ready For the Pioneer Pro Tour? Here Are the Format's Best Decks

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Article at a Glance

Up until recently, many players considered Pioneer a dead Magic: the Gathering format. But Wizards of the Coast announced the return of Pro Tours and the first one will feature Pioneer. This reinvigorated players’ interest in the format.

If you haven’t been keeping up with Pioneer, you may need a brief breakdown of the metagame. I’ll cover several of the format’s most prevalent decks in this article, plus showcase a few extra fun options.

The Pioneer Metagame

Looking at Pioneer’s metagame, there is a diverse range of decks with every type of strategy being well-represented. There are strong options for control, midrange, aggro, and combo players.

Pioneer metagame on 04/05/22 | MTG Goldfish

Let’s break down a few of the most popular decks in Pioneer!

Azorius Control

This is your traditional control strategy that uses counterspells and board wipes to keep the battlefield clear before landing a tricky threat such as Teferi, Hero of Dominaria, or Shark Typhoon.

You can pass your turn with mana open and leave your opponent guessing as to whether you have Absorb, Memory Deluge, or the new addition, The Wandering Emperor.

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Winota Midrange

This deck puts explosive amounts of power on the battlefield. It does this by ramping into Winota with Elvish Mystic and Prosperous Innkeeper, attacking with a field full of non-Human creatures, and using Winota to “cheat” big threats into play such as Tovolar’s Huntmaster.

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Hidden Strings Combo

This all-in combo deck uses its namesake card, Hidden Strings, and Vizier of Tumbling Sands to untap Lotus Field multiple times in a turn, making a ton of mana to cast Emergent Ultimatum.

The goal of casting Emergent Ultimatum is to put an Omniscience into play, allowing you to cast all your spells for free. From here, you can win by casting Approach of the Second Sun twice in one turn.

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Mono-Red Aggro

This is Pioneer’s version of the typical Modern Burn deck. It will occasionally splash white for Boros Charm and white sideboard options.

But for the most part, Red-based aggressive decks aim to play efficient prowess creatures like Monastery Swiftspear and Soul-Scar Mage and boost their stats with burn spells such as Play with Fire and Skkewer the Critics.

Chandra is a difficult-to-answer threat that provides card advantage, ramp, and direct damage to your opponent. And Eidolon is a classic Burn card that taxes your opponent’s life total whenever they play cards that cost three or fewer mana.

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Other Pioneer Strategies

Niv-Mizzet Reborn is a midrange deck that plays spells of every color pairing. The legendary dragon can dig through the top of your deck and draw Dreadbore, The Scarab God, and Bring to Light.

Fires of Invention was banned in Standard but it is still legal in Pioneer. This is another five-color deck that aims to Transmogrify creature tokens into Angent of Treachery.

Izzet Phoenix decks play a high density of instants and sorceries to reanimate Arclight Phoenix from the graveyard or transform Thing in the Ice.

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