11, Mar, 24

Zero-Rare Mono-Blue Standard Deck Thrives on MTG Arena!

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Article at a Glance

MTG Arena is an excellent program that allows players to easily load up games of Magic the Gathering from the comfort of their own homes. While there is a social element you will be missing out on, MTG Arena is extremely convenient. Even if you only have a small amount of time to play, it’s easy to hop into the queue, play a few matches, and hop off at your leisure.

As nice as MTG Arena is, though, one aspect many players have complained about over the years is the general economy. It can be tough to invest in lots of rares and mythic rares on a digital platform. This is especially true for a format like Standard, which not only rotates, but frequently has potent metagame shifts that are important to keep up with.

This issue, coupled with the fact that most top tier Standard decks utilize a ton of high rarity cards, can certainly turn players away from the format. Luckily, some players have recently highlighted a unique mono-blue aggro deck in Standard that can be great for climbing the Arena ladder. Multiple players have mentioned making it to mythic or diamond ranking with this deck, and it features zero rares! It’s a solid budget-friendly option with some nice tools to fight a variety of strategies. Let’s take a closer look.

Maximizing Evasive Creatures

The main gameplan of this deck is to utilize tempo to your advantage. In the one-drop slot, there are a total of 12 evasive Creatures. Gingerbrute, Network Disruptor, and Spyglass Siren act as the bread-and-butter beaters for this archetype. While each of these Creatures only have one-power, their evasive nature helps serve a greater purpose: enabling Ninjutsu.

Where the real power in this deck lies is with two specific Ninjutsu Creatures that you can get onto the board in short order. Moon-Circuit Hacker is the most efficient. For only one mana, you get to return your miniscule Fliers and put in a bigger threat that can start accruing cards. Alongside Moon-Circuit Hacker, this deck utilizes Prosperous Thief as another decent Ninjutsu Creature that can provide a mana advantage. As we will see later, Thief’s ability to make Artifact tokens is also incredibly important in maximizing some potent three-drops.

What’s nice about the Ninja gameplan in conjunction with your Flying one-drops is that, not only do they help get your Ninjas into play in the first place, but they can help make sure your Ninjas can keep attacking on future turns. Once you return Network Disruptor, for instance, you can replay it, tap down your opponent’s blocker, and attack with Prosperous Thief or Moon-Circuit Hacker once again.

In the case of Spyglass Siren, you can start generating Map tokens to potentially grow your Ninjas and make them harder to block profitably. Fading Hope and Machine Over Matter help with this plan, too, keeping your damage output up.

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An Artifact Subtheme

Zoetic Glyph

As strong as this deck’s tempo gameplan might be, in some matchups, it’s important to have bigger Creatures at your disposal. Even with Network Disruptor and bounce spells in the picture, your ground Creatures may get outclassed as the game progresses. This is where your Artifact subtheme makes its presence felt.

Between Spyglass Siren and Prosperous Thief, you will often have Artifact tokens lying around. These tokens help make Zoetic Glyph and Unctus’s Retrofitter reliable tools to make sure you can attack into slightly bigger blockers and close the game. In matchups where removal is a concern, using Zoetic Glyph on an Artifact token is an effective strategy. Now, even if they kill the Creature Enchanted by Zoetic Glyph, you still get to Discover 3 as a nice bonus.

In matchups where removal is less of a concern and you need to try to win a race, such as against Boros Convoke, you can also use Glyph and Retrofitter to buff up Network Disruptor or Gingerbrute. Now, you can end the game in short order with your tough to block threats.

Meanwhile, High-Speed Hoverbike is the perfect target for Zoetic Glyph in either scenario. You don’t have to worry about getting blown out by Instant-speed removal when attempting to Enchant Hoverbike with Zoetic Glyph, but you also get a large evasive threat out of the deal to start bashing with.

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Other Options

Case of the Filched Falcon

All in all, this deck can give a lot of other strategies a run for their money. Depending on the decks you expect to face the most, there are a few other notable options to consider playing. The first of these cards is Case of the Filched Falcon. This is a rather easy case to Solve in this style of deck, and while the upside of Unctus’s Retrofitter might be a little higher, Case is significantly stronger against black-based midrange decks.

The problem with Retrofitter is that the Artifact you make into a Creature only stays that way for as long as Retrofitter remains in play itself. In a format featuring removal like Go for the Throat that otherwise would have a minimal number of targets in your deck, your opponent may be able to simply kill Retrofitter in an efficient manner and mess up your whole gameplan. Even Cut Down deals with the impactful three-drop, which isn’t ideal.

Case not only can create a threat that dodges both of these removal spells, but your 4/4 will have evasion guaranteed. As such, the card is definitely worth consideration.

Another card worthy of inclusion is Disruption Protocol. Playing full playsets of Fading Hope and Machine Over Matter is a bit excessive, especially in midrange matchups. Getting to use Protocol to actually deal with problematic cards like Raffine, Scheming Seer and provide more than just a temporary reprieve can be essential.

The reality is, there are plenty of cards worth considering. If you happen to have a few rare Wildcards lying around, there are other basic additions you can add like Akal Pakal, First Among Equals and Mirrex to help in attrition-based matchups.

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A Budget Deck Carrying its Weight

Gleeful Demolition

Even as is, though, the deck is certainly capable of winning games. With a nice mix of pressure, disruption, and Creatures that are difficult to block, this deck has the tools to fight. Zoetic Glyph in particular carries a lot of weight, as its strong against aggressive, midrange, and control strategies alike. In some spots, simply sticking Glyph on Gingerbrute or Hoverbike can end the game by itself.

That being said, the deck definitely has its weaknesses when compared to other tier one decks. Against Boros Convoke, one of the strongest decks in the format, this deck heavily relies on Zoetic Glyph or Retrofitter to cross the finish line. Boros Convoke is simply too fast to race with low-powered Fliers, and your Ninjas get quickly brick walled. If that weren’t enough, Gleeful Demolition has extra utility against this deck, making it much tougher to just ride Gingerbrute or Hoverbike to victory.

Against Dimir and Esper midrange, this deck’s lack of removal can be a bit of a weakness, especially when facing down Deep-Cavern Bat. Luckily, your Ninja plan can come in handy here, generating extra value over time. As mentioned, too, your big Artifact Creatures aren’t the easiest for these midrange decks to deal with given their current removal suite. Ultimately, this deck provides players with a sweet budget-friendly choice to play in events and grind the MTG Arena ladder with without feeling completely outmatched, which is a welcome sight.

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