Hi everyone, and welcome to the first episode of Paupers & Kings, my series on porting Pauper decks into the Modern format while staying on a budget.
Today we’re looking at everyone’s favorite list to hate, Bogles / Hexproof.
We’re starting with Hexproof, in particular, because the list plays very similarly across formats. In both Pauper and Modern you are playing a near solitaire-esque game of Magic; building a Voltron with Auras and busting through for massive damage and life gain.
Strengths of Hexproof / Bogles
- Life gain against other aggro decks makes it very hard for them to race you
- Null your opponent’s targeted removal
- Good early game and late game, can be aggressive and grindy
Weaknesses of Hexproof / Bogles
- Weak to specific hate from sideboard (aura sweepers are a mean thing)
- Clunky hands require aggressive mulligans
- Weak to discard and sacrifice effects
Hexproof in Pauper
For whatever reason, we tend to call this deck “Hexproof” in Pauper but “Bogles” in Modern. That’s the nomenclature I’ll use from here on it, but it’s the same deck. The Hexproof list we’re favoring today is from Dain5, who has been placing in recent Pauper Daily Events with it.
I like this list because the mana base is incredibly consistent; gone are the tap lands, instead we’re rocking 17 green sources and 12 spells that can help us get white when we need it.
Here is the list:
Hexproof by Dain5 (Pauper)
16 Snow-Covered Forest
1 Khalni Garden
4 Aura Gnarlid
4 Gladecover Scout
4 Silhana Ledgewalker
4 Slippery Bogle
4 Abundant Growth
3 Ancestral Mask
4 Ethereal Armor
4 Utopia Sprawl
4 Armadillo Cloak
1 Flaring Pain
3 Gleeful Sabotage
2 Hornet Sting
3 Scattershot Archer
3 Young Wolf
3 Moment’s Peace
It’s a cheap list even by Pauper standards, except for one troublemaker. Ancestral Mask run at $4 each right now, so you’re blowing some cash if you want those. Replacing them with Umbras (Hyena, Spider, Snake as you prefer) would be fine if you wanted to save some cash. Running regular forests is fine too; I added the snow-covered but they honestly don’t do anything.
The goal of this list is to land a Hexproof guy (of which there are 12), load on some auras (of which there are 16) and beat face. Ledgewalker has the added bonus of being difficult to block, and Gnarlid comes down later in the game, often as a large, unblockable beater.
Bogles in Modern
The list works about the same way in Modern, but has a few all-stars that raise the power level, provide consistency, and (unfortunately) require a more complicated mana base. The list we’re looking at today is adapted from Dust_’s winning list. Let’s take a look.
4 Sunpetal Grove
4 Wooded Bastion
1 Dryad Arbor
4 Gladecover Scout
4 Kor Spiritdancer
4 Slippery Bogle
3 Path to Exile
4 Daybreak Coronet
4 Ethereal Armor
4 Hyena Umbra
1 Keen Sense
4 Spider Umbra
2 Spirit Mantle
2 Spirit Link
3 Burrenton Forge-Tender
2 Gaddock Teeg
2 Nature’s Claim
2 Stony Silence
4 Rest in Peace
This budget list still has a few cards that break the bank, especially compared to Pauper. Daybreak Coronet is the biggest transgressor. Unfortunately, you really can’t play Bogles in Modern without that card, it is simply way too strong.
Kor Spiritdancer can be replaced by another Hexproof creature, even Silhana Ledgewalker could come in. You lose some consistency because the card draw you can get off her is really helpful especially in stalled out games, but can save almost $15.
The mana base is about as good and cheap as I can get it. We’re saving about $100 with this base, mainly by omitted Windswept Heath, a card that is amazing but also awfully expensive. Let’s take a look at how we’re getting mana.
Brushland is an amazing dual land in a list like Bogles. It is always untapped and it always provides either or . The one life lost is (usually) easily made up with the lifegain we have going. If there’s a list to run this land, it’s Bogles.
With 7 basics in the list, Sunpetal Grove has a decent chance to come into play untapped and give you whatever color mana you may need. On the other hand, half the time it’s a guildgate, which isn’t always awesome.
Wooded Bastion is an allstar. It allows you to play Forest on turn 1 and then rock on turn 2. This let’s you hit a 1-drop Hexproof guy and then rock any two of your 1-mana enchantments on turn 2, swinging in with a 6/4 first-striking trampler, for instance, or something else ridiculous.
Dryad Arbor eats sacrifice effects. You can, alternately, buff it up and swing in, assuming no one else is around to wear all those auras.
Some of our sideboard choices are expensive. Choke can hose big blue lists, but since they’re not always our biggest concern, you could omit it. Gaddock Teeg is amazing against certain lists, though. My board includes Rest in Peace which is actually my favorite sideboard card of all time and a great answer to anyone testing out Dredge decks. Stony Silence hoses a lot of lists including Affinity, and it’s also cheap. Forge-Tender can come in as Hexproof guy #9-12 with the added bonus that they are immune to red sweepers; they can also save your face from damage in a pinch.
On the Play
So how do these look in play? I took them both our for three matches, and the results speak for themselves. Check out the playlist.
For those counting along at home, that’s 6-0 in the tournament practice room. 3-0 in each format. Hard to do much better than that!
Next Week on Paupers & Kings
I’m going to try and do this as a weekly series. Is that cool with you all? We have lots more great crossover potential, including Goblins, Burn, Mono-Green Stompy, Delver, Tron, and others. Which lists do you want to see me try out? Let me know down in the comments.
Until then, may you opponent always be holding useless Doom Blades.