Mono Red Devotion at GPT Manchester – Winners Deck Tech by Ashley Knox

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Mono Red Devotion at GPT Manchester – Winners Deck Tech by Ashley Knox

Much like the block format this article has gone through many changes, it has warped and will continue to change if left to its own devices.

I’ll be honest, when I first saw Theros coming up from the Innistrad and Return to Ravnica block I was less than impressed, but upon completion of the set I really got into the swing of the full scope and flavor of Theros. The less than perfect mana, the return of Elspeth and the fringe possibilities for a Sligh deck in Standard.

Since the introduction of Journey into Nyx I didn’t spend much (read – any) time testing, work had started to pick up and I honestly couldn’t devote the amount of time required so my list for the GPT was incredibly shaky but it showed promise, after all it was basically a port of a fringe Standard deck.

I was already pretty committed to the mono red heroic plan during Theros-BotG block as the other aggro deck did far too much self-damage and the rest of the decks were just too slow.

Journey into Nyx however gave the other decks the tools they needed, Naya got a card drawing engine that brought them closer to Elspeth/dragons and the other aggro decks got Mana Confluence (yippee) and sweet one drops to play with.

I continued to try the heroic strategy with the inclusion of Satyr Hoplite and a few other heroic spells but it simply wasn’t enough, not in block – Standard however will be another story.

Fanatic of Mogis banner

On the day of the GPT at Manchester’s best store – Fanboy3, home of the Ross Silcock, I sleeved up this awkward monstrosity for the first time and tried my luck.

(60)
18 mountain
Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx
Temple of Triumph
Temple of Malice
Firedrinker Satyr
Eidolon of the Great Revel
Everflame Eidolon
Prophetic Flamespeaker
Flame-Wreathed Phoenix
Fanatic of Mogis
Purphoros, God of the Forge
Stormbreath Dragon
Lightning Strike
Fated Conflagration
Magma Jet
Hammer of Purphoros

Sideboard

(15)
Fated Conflagration
Reckless Reveler
Purphoros God of the Forge
Flame-Wreathed Phoenix
Harness by Force
Magma Spray
Searing Blood

Eidolon of the Great Revel

Eidolon of the Great Revel

This card is absurd – it was basically a stand in for Ash Zealot, though this is guaranteed to do the two damage through a caryatid or a courser. The basic idea for this (these?) guys was to do just enough damage to make a fanatic for ~7 or so lethal.

This led to the inclusion of Everflame Eidolon which allows you to use your mana every turn to make plays without any actual damage to yourself.

Prophetic Flamespeaker

Prophetic Flamespeaker

I wanted a guy that was 1RR, this appeared to be the best of the bunch as it drew me cards – or so I thought. I boarded him out a lot either he simply wasn’t getting in or he just had really anti-synergy with the haste afforded by hammer. This guy is great, but not for this deck.

Flame-Wreathed Phoenix

Flame-Wreathed Phoenix

This guy, either a decent bird or a slow dragon. A 5/5 in the air is a big deal when people are slamming in with dragons – opponents get into an awkward situation even when you’re on the back foot – they get to either give you a guy who will block forever or who will trade with one of theirs.

Sticking an Everflame Eidolon on this felt really unfair a lot of the time.

Fanatic of Mogis

Fanatic of Mogis

Though his god doesn’t appear in the list I’ve certainly converted to be a true believer, some fancy shenanigans from Nykthos-ing two of these into play to kill my reanimator opponent who was on 19 life. If we’re going to have board stalls similar to a limited format then I want my top decks to just have so much reach that it doesn’t matter.

I had the Firedrinker Satyr into Eidolon of the Great Revel into Hammer of Purphoros into THIS! God hand a few times and that’s usually just enough to get you there.

Stormbreath Dragon banner

After the “on the job” playtesting session that this GPT afforded me I’ve made a few changes but this won’t be the end, the pro tour coverage will definitely warp the format again but I’m confident that I can pilot this deck as a lot of the draws aren’t very interactive and don’t care much for what the opponent is up to.

Being able to transform into a big red control deck post sideboard against creatures really helps when people are jamming Mana Confluence into Herald of Torment.

(60)
18 Mountain
Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx
Temple of Triumph
Temple of Malice
Firedrinker Satyr
 Eidolon of the Great Revel
Everflame Eidolon
Archetype of Aggression
Flame-Wreathed Phoenix
Fanatic of Mogis
Purphoros, God of the Forge
Stormbreath Dragon
Lightning Strike
Fated Conflagration
Magma Jet
Hammer of Purphoros

Sideboard

(15)
Fated Conflagration
Reckless Reveler
Hammer of Purphoros
Flame-Wreathed Pheonix
Harness by Force
Magma Spray
Searing Blood

I managed to come first in the event – my final result for the event was 6-1-0 my only loss being to the same guy who I beat in the semi finals – We both had three Stormbreath Dragon in the game but I didn’t spend the game stuck on single red.

Anyway thanks for reading hopefully I’ll meet you at the GP! And stay tuned to hear more from Ash Zealot.

I look forward to hearing your comments below, thanks for reading.

Ashley

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