21, Apr, 24

Elite MTG Thunder Junction and Warhammer Artifacts Crush Major Eternal Event!

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Article at a Glance

Over the past year, almost every premier set that has been released had major implications for Constructed formats, even beyond Standard. The introduction of Wilds of Eldraine brought us Up the Beanstalk, which proved to be too strong of a card advantage engine for Modern. The Lost Caverns of Ixalan resulted in yet another ban. This time, Geological Appraiser bit the dust for its role in a fast and consistent combo deck in Pioneer.

Meanwhile, Murders at Karlov Manor completely shook up the metagames of both Pioneer and Modern. Vein Ripper is an amazing payoff for the Vampires deck in Pioneer, and the combination of Leyline of the Guildpact and Scion of Draco is still a force to be reckoned with.

Outlaws of Thunder Junction released quite recently, but it appears as though this set follows a similar trend. For instance, Slickshot Show-Off is a clear multi-format all-star right from the jump. If that weren’t enough, a rather innovative Artifacts shell in Legacy making use of two different Thunder Junction cards won a recent Magic Online Legacy Challenge! Given the vast card pool already available for Legacy players, this unique deck is certainly worth looking into.

New Cards Play a Major Role

Simulacrum Synthesizer

Before Outlaws of Thunder Junction, blue-based Artifacts shells in Legacy were hanging on by a thread in the metagame. Eight-cast decks utilizing the power of Thought Monitor and Thoughtcast had fallen out of favor a bit. Patchwork Automaton was clearly still a powerful card in conjunction with zero-drop Artifacts, but decks were a bit too reliant on the potent two-drop to close the game.

Well, that was all about to change with the printing of Simulacrum Synthesizer. Simulacrum Synthesizer has the ability to churn out a multitude of massive tokens. If you’ve ever played against Urza’s Saga, you know just how big these Construct tokens can get, and this deck utilizes both Construct makers. The difference, though, is that Synthesizer has the potential to make a bunch of Construct tokens all in the same turn!

Similar to Modern Affinity builds, this deck plays a high density of efficient Artifacts, just with significantly stronger options. Beyond just enabling Patchwork Automaton, cards like Mox Opal and Lotus Petal ensure that your Affinity payoffs like Frogmite and Sojourner’s Companion cost as little as possible. Seat of the Synod works wonders here as an untapped Artifact Land, too.

Notably, Simulacrum Synthesizer isn’t the only new Artifact to make an appearance. Lavaspur Boots appears as a one-of in this decklist, primarily as a tutor target for Urza’s Saga. While it may be just a one-of, its ability to provide Haste to one of your massive Constructs can provide a huge swing. Its cheap Equip cost of only one mana makes it easy to move around on future turns. Tack on a power buff and Ward 1, and you’ve got a lot of upside built into these Boots.

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Thunder Junction Meets Warhammer

Skorpekh Lord

Where this deck starts to separate itself even further from Modern Affinity builds is with its inclusion of some fantastic three-drop Artifact Creatures from the MTG Warhammer set. After a long waiting period, Warhammer cards have just recently made their way onto Magic Online. From Triumph of Saint Katherine to Chaos Defiler, these cards have quickly begun making their presences felt.

The first Warhammer card this deck features is Skorpekh Lord. Skorpekh Lord simply does everything this deck wants. It grants a form of evasion to all of your massive Constructs. It triggers Synthesizer when you cast it or Unearth it. The only downside is that it costs three mana, but in Legacy, this is hardly a problem. Mox Opal and Lotus Petal make it trivial to cast this card early, even without a Land in play that produces black mana. Add in the almighty Ancient Tomb and it’s easy to play this card ahead of schedule.

That brings us to the second Warhammer card: Sicarian Infiltrator. Sicarian Infiltrator is a neat mana sink that works exceptionally well with Synthesizer. At minimum, Sicarian Infiltrator is a three-mana 1/2 that draws a card when it enters. However, if you have excess mana lying around, you can use its Squad ability to have it create extra copies of itself when entering play. Importantly, each copy that enters the battlefield has a mana value of three, so each copy will trigger Synthesizer as well.

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Bigger and Better

Force of Will

The addition of Synthesizer, Lavaspur Boots, and a couple elite Warhammer cards have given the Legacy Patchwork Automaton archetype a new identity. Rather than relying heavily on synergies between Urza’s Bauble and Emry, Lurker of the Loch to pull ahead, this deck consistently puts a ton of extra pressure on the opponent.

Being able to Flood the board with Constructs helps a ton in Creature-heavy matchups. You are also a little less vulnerable to Orcish Bowmasters and Chalice of the Void for X=0.

The one area this deck gets a little weaker in is disrupting fast combo decks. Interestingly, this deck plays four copies of Force of Will in the sideboard, not in the maindeck. At first glance, this may seem like a wild choice to make. However, it makes sense considering how few blue cards this deck has to pitch to Force. There are no copies of Emry, Thoughtcast, or Kappa Cannoneer to be found here. The only blue cards in the maindeck are Infiltrator, Thought Monitor, and Synthesizer, the last of which you really don’t want to pitch to Force.

By cutting Force of Will from the maindeck, this deck gets to play even more Artifacts to help fuel the Synthesizer/Automaton gameplan. As such, you’re main gameplan is bolstered, and you can still side in Force of will for games two and three when necessary. You will feel the cost against strategies like Doomsday combo in game one, though, so this decision does have its tradeoffs.

At the end of the day, there’s no denying the elite performance this archetype put up. The Thunder Junction cards undoubtedly played a large part in the deck’s success. If you’re looking to play Legacy in the coming weeks, it might be worth packing some extra hate cards like Null Rod. This deck is powerful and will run you over if you’re not prepared.

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