WSD - Rug Ramp Deck Tech
Weekly Standard Discussion on RUG Ramp
Posted on: 3/3/2013 9:20 PM By KeirandtheWhale
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Hey MTGDeckbuilder Community,
My name is KeirandtheWhale, but you can just call me Keir.
This week on Weekly Standard Discussion, I'm going to take a look into a deck archetype that has a ton of potential. My testing has shown me that most matchups are pretty even, and post board, can swing very much into your favour.
I'm talking about Rug Ramp. Yes, Rug Ramp. That's Red (ie. Removal and mega blowout burn spells), Blue (ie. Counters and Card draw), and Green (ie. Ramo and big idiots).
We'll start off with the mana base:
4 Breeding Pool
4 Steam Vents
2 Stomping Ground
From my testing 10 Shocks is about ideal. Playing a turn 1 shock is super benefitial for this deck, and picking them out with Farseek is important too.
4 Hinterland Harbor
4 Sulfur Falls
3 Rootbound Crag
These lands will come into play untapped a ton, and having a healthy colour base is super powerful.
Forest and Island are there for Ghost Quarter prevention basically.
2 Kessing Wolf Run
1 Alchemist's Refuge
Oh, I'm sorry. You don't have removal for my 2/2 wolf? That's ok. I'll give him +12/+0 and Trample untill end of turn. And at the end of your turn I'll drop some more dudes and maybe some walkers
So here's your mana base. I've never been screwed out, but some tweeks may ben needed. This deck is very colour greedy so optimizing your mana is super important
Next up is creatures. There are your guys that you'll need to bring your opponent down to burn range, which is surprisingly easy. At the same time, you need enough creatures to block and be defensive if your opponent is the aggressor.
Here's the base I'm working with:
2 Snapcaster Mage
While this 2 mana, flash mage isn't unknown to anyone, he plays a very different role in this deck. If your opponent is aggressive, don't be afraid to Ambush Viper your opponents attack step. Another trick you need to be aware of is the Farseek, Snapcaster Farseek turns. Why do this? Well, a turn 4 Niv-Mizzet is usually pretty good, and getting yourself ahead on lands is incredibly powerful.
4 Huntmaster of the Fells
These guys both fill similar but different roles. They're both super strong against aggro, as gaining life and putting creatures on the board is the opposite of what they want.
Thragtusk is better in the control matchup, as wrathing the board is far less profitable.
Huntmaster is great against midrange decks and tempo decks. Forcing your opponent to play spells is good, and getting 4 damage and 2 life split between 2 bodies is always good.
2 Niv-Mizzet, Dracogenius
I've been looking for a deck to fit this guy into, and I think this is it. Getting a 5/5 on turn 4 can happen a lot, but playing him with 10 mana, pinging for 2 and drawing cards will happen a ton too.
So here's that creature base. Against midrange and control decks, play one guy out at a time, and force them to remove it. Against aggro, play all your guys and don't stop until they're in topdeck mode.
Now for your spells. You need to get some spells that fill out your curve, force you ahead and remove or prevent your opponent from getting back into the game.
2 Pillar of Flame
2 Rapid Hybridization
Single Mana removal is always good, and the drawbacks are a non-issue to this deck. Hybridization can generate tempo against big swings, and pillar is a beast against a lot of decks.
2 Izzet Charm
Counters are good, and your opponents wont usually play around an Izzet Charm. Snapcastering either of these cards are strong. Izzet Charm also smacks down x/2s, and keep you in the game.
Now for my favorite part of the deck... the ramp package
2 Urban Evolution
Oh yeah, Farseek. This card is just so good. In many ways, this deck plays similar to Jund, in that a turn 2 Farseek makes your matches way better.
Urban Evolution is a card I've been wanting to break for a very long time. Drawing 3 and playing extra lands is the best feeling in the world. I love playing lands! I love drawing cards! So good! For this deck, this is your Sphinx's Revelation. This is the card that pulls you back into a game from behind.
Now, what to do with this mana? When you get into the late game, you will have 12+ land. It's very easy to hit land drops for every turn, and get way more ahead than your opponent with Farseeks and Urban Evolutions. Well, what to do with your mana? Well...
1 Bonfire of the Damned
3 Clan Defiance
Bonfire is an absolute house, esspecially when you miracle it. Hits everything, and hardcasting it for 4-6 is not unheard of.
Clan Defiance is a bit of an odd choice, but has blown away so many games for me. Miracling Bonfire was great because it was R and X to hit their biggest threat, splash hit and smack them in the face. Clan Defiance works almost as well, but is more reliable. RGX to hit their biggest guy, sometimes hit Olivia or Resto and hit them for a ton too, is super powerful. I promise that playing this card will not disappoint. Pulling a game out of nowhere with this will happen, and you will be grateful you have it.
Planeswalkers: just kinda value
3 Jace, Architect of Though
This guy is here for his -2 ability. You'll always just use it and draw cards. If your opponent attacks him, you gain life, and if they don't attack him, you draw a bunch of gas.
1 Garruk, Primal Hunter
This is the only card I'm iffy about. He blows control out of the water, but is pretty slow against aggro. Kessig Wolf Running a guy and then -3 to draw 10 will win you the game 100% of the time, but triple green is hard to hit sometimes. May be worth testing Relentless in this spot.
1 Psychic Spiral - Turns out instant speed, "no-you-get-milled-instead-of-me" is strong, espeically with counterflux, snapcaster backup
2 Witchbane Orb - Comes in against Jund. Rakdos's Return, Slaughter Games, Liliana's -2 and -6, Huntmaster Flips, Bonfire.... Oh god, so good. Also, does wonders against Control decks using Drownyard
2 Counterflux - Going up to 4 hard counters is strong against other control decks
2 Simic Charm - Pretty good against UWR decks that want to burn your guys and throw Harvest Pyres at Boros Reckoners. All modes are active alot of the time.
2 Urban Evolution - Against Sphinx's Revelation decks that don't put pressure on in the early and mid game, this is your answer to keep up with their card advantage. Also lets your set up a lethal Clan Defiance with counter backup
3 Searing Spear - Comes in for Naya Blitz. You need to remove their threats and 2 damage often just isnt enough
1 Grafdigger's Cage - Gaveyard Hate. You need it against Humanimator. Stop your opponents nut combos.
2 Ground Seal - Cantrip and does the same thing as above. Seems pretty good
Sideboard probably needs a ton of work, but it's a good starting point
I hope this deck tech has been comprehensive and informative. If youre wanting to play something unusual, yet still competitve, here's a great deck to try out. You have a ton of directions you can take this deck, whether you want to make it more controlling or get more aggressive.
While not discussing a proven deck, I'm hoping that this decktech inspires you to try out a new deck. Find a card that does stuff you like, build around it, abuse the shit out of it. I've been playing magic for a long time, and this is by far some of the best mana standard has had in a long time, meaning many many different decks are viable. Enjoy it while you can. Build your decks properly. Standard is your oyster.
As always, keep flipping those Delvers