The Pauper Brewer’s Cup, Week Three: The Chosen One


Welcome back, everyone, and thanks for making the Brewer’s Cup such a fun event so far. I’ve loved reading your submissions and watching conversations happen in the comments. How are you guys liking the event so far? Anything I should change?

By now you know the score. If you’re new here, don’t worry, I’ll go over it each week. This week’s article has two sections. First you get to vote on your favorite list from our top contenders last week. Second, you get to submit new lists around a new theme, which will be voted on next week. Here is a reminder of how this whole thing works.

The Pauper Brewer’s Cup

Here are some rules and stuff.

  1. Every week, I will offer some kind of constraint or challenge to our readers.
  2. Submit a fun, innovative, or powerful brew built around those constraints.
  3. Your submission must be legal for Pauper in Magic Online. Guidelines are here.
  4. I will select three lists out of your submissions, and you will get to vote for that week’s winner.
  5. After 8 weeks we will have 8 innovative brews, and they will enter the gauntlet portion of the Brewer’s Cup.
  6. Whoever owns (submitted) the deck that wins this gauntlet will be endowed with fabulous riches (to be determined) and great esteem.

If any of that doesn’t make sense, ask for clarifications in the comments. The idea is that we should have fun sharing ideas and brewing, maybe discover some new, powerful decks, and in general support and promote the format we love the most, Pauper.

If at any point you have a suggestion for a theme or challenge, send those along too. I will do my best, but I am relying upon the ingenuity of you guys to make this thing really successful. I know you won’t let me down!

So, rules and stuff aside, let’s get down to business.

Week One Winner

Wow! We tallied 65 votes over the week for your favorite [c]Cavern Harpy[/c] lists.

The sure winner with 36 votes was Tomscud with his Eidolon and On list. Congratulations! Eidolon and On is now officially the first list that will go into the gauntlet portion of the Brewer’s Cup where it will have the opportunity to fight for glory and riches.

Rremedio grabbed second place with 19 votes for his Harpy Control list while Gerge brought in a solid 10 votes for his Dimir Shinobi list.

Voting for Week Two

Our constraint in week two was to include 4x of one of the following: [c]Bant Sureblade[/c] | [c]Esper Stormblade[/c] | [c]Grixis Grimblade[/c] | [c]Jund Hackblade[/c] | [c]Naya Hushblade[/c] and to only use the colors of the shard you had chosen. This challenge is quite hard because, as someone noted, the Blades all want to be in an aggro deck, but multi-colored aggro decks are an issue in Pauper due to our clunky mana bases. That said, there were some excellent submissions, and here are my three picks for you to vote on.

[d title=”Esper Blink-ifacts by brick (Pauper)”]

4 Esper Stormblade
4 Ethercaste Knight
4 Ethersworn Shieldmage
4 Court Homunculus
4 Glassdust Hulk
2 Sanctum Gargoyle
3 Mulldrifter

4 Brainstorm
3 Mystical Teachings
3 Momentary Blink
3 Mana Leak
2 Doom Blade

Mana Makers
2 Azorius Signet
4 Evolving Wilds
4 Terramorphic Expanse
4 Plains
5 Island
1 Swamp

2 Vedalken Outlander
2 Diabolic Edict
2 Prismatic Strands
1 Echoing Decay
2 Holy Light
1 Grim Harvest
1 Doom Blade
1 Crypt Incursion
2 Dismantling Blow
1 Swamp [/d]

Brick took feedback from his first submission and tuned it into this list, highlighting a [c]Mystical Teachings[/c] package that can grab anything from the spell toolbox or [c]Ethersworn Shieldmage[/c]. I like the idea of grabbing Flash creatures with Teachings, and the deck looks solid overall. It also fit the shard requirement, which many lists did not. I’m willing to be flexible, but lists that follow the rules get bonus points.

[d title=”Bant Sword and Shield by heltoupee (Pauper)”]

2 Armadillo Cloak
2 Cho-Manno’s Blessing
1 Crystallization
2 Curse of Chains
1 Favor of the Overbeing
3 Shield of the Oversoul
1 Steel of the Godhead

2 Fieldmist Borderpost
2 Wildfield Borderpost

4 Bant Sureblade
4 Heliod’s Pilgrim
3 Mulldrifter
4 Qasali Pridemage
2 Safehold Elite
4 Slippery Bogle
4 Steward of Valeron

4 Evolving Wilds
7 Forest
1 Island
7 Plains

3 Dispel
2 Gleeful Sabotage
3 Prismatic Strands
1 Relic of Progenitus
3 Scattershot Archer
3 Standard Bearer [/d]

Another list that follows this rules, this time in Bant colors. Heltoupee resubmitted his list to make sure it fit the guidelines, and the result is a great looking Bant list with a solid [c]Heliod’s Pilgrim[/c] aura package. With the 4x pilgrims I feel like the SB could benefit from some situational auras, though otherwise it looks pretty balanced.

[d title=”Jund Hack and Slash by zturchan (Pauper)”]

4 Jund Hackblade
4 Putrid Leech
4 Horned Kavu
4 Manaforge Cinder
2 Desecrator Hag
4 Blood Ogre

4 Lightning Bolt
3 Terminate
3 Riot Spikes
4 Searing Blaze
4 Chain Lightning

Mana Sources/Lands
3 Firewild Borderpost
2 Veinfire Borderpost
4 Forest
4 Swamp
7 Mountain

3 Ancient Grudge
3 Electrickery
3 Molten Rain
3 Duress
3 Pyroblast [/d]

There is plenty to love in this Jund list. Stick a fat, undercosted creature like Leech or Kavu, protect it with tons of removal, and swing for the fences. I can see this list doing well against creature decks, but imagine it has issues with more controlling lists.

Vote Here!

Alright, which of these three lists do you like the most? Submit your votes by the end of the week. One vote per reader, please.

Week Three: The Chosen One

I had some good suggestions for themes in last week’s comments, and I will probably use them in the future. For now, I want to mix things up and, with an eye to not always creating clunky, multi-colored midrange lists, this week’s challenge will be sleek and streamlined.

Here are your constraints this week:

  1. All but 4 cards in your list have to be castable with only one mana.
  2. Your 4 exceptions can have any mana cost you like.

Yep, it’s a one-drop challenge. Note that the way I have worded the rules does allow for cards like [c]Vault Skirge[/c] and [c]Rift Bolt[/c]. I am also willing to consider Convoke and Delve in your list but I have to believe that those cards are realistically only going to cost one mana when you cast them.

Submissions will be judged on power, innovation, and how well you work within the constraints.

Submit your brews and ideas

That’s it! Submit your lists in the comments below. Yes, that means other people can see your stuff and copy it or adapt it, but I do really want this to be an opportunity for us to discuss and brew together for Pauper.

Lists need to be submitted before next Tuesday, July 7, to be considered.

I will pick three submissions to highlight in next week’s article, and you guys will get to vote to decide the winner.

Our Forum Guidelines and Style Guide are available here, so you can make your decklist look like a list. Please use it.

Other thoughts, comments, or concerns? Suggestions for a weekly challenge? Leave those in the comments too!

Last but not least, if you like this challenge or any of our other content, please consider supporting us via our Patreon.

Happy brewing!



Mid-Week Pauper Meta Report: June 11, 2015

boros garrison art

About this article: This is a weekly report on the online pauper meta. The data it uses are from last Wednesday to this Wednesday. It looks at the data that Tom Scudder and I collect from a selection of dailies. We watch the replays on MTGO to figure out how each person did, not just the 3-1s and 4-0s that Wizards publishes. This allows us to see the whole picture and figure out how well each deck did in total. Now, this data is just for this week and just from the data we collects so it does ignore the other 3-1/4-0 results which means it is not perfect. Additionally, the conclusions in this article are based on this week, and as the meta is fluid, the top decks shift. This is intended to see what decks are performing well this week and what to expect in the future.

This uses the data from the 6/4, 6/7 afternoon, and 6/7 evening dailies.

Burn? Burn. The deck has jumped up to be the king of the hill, knocking off MBC from its throne for the first time since Treasure Cruise was banned. In addition, it has become such a large part of the meta that it made MBC fall to only 12.18% of the meta. The red menace has been a real threat, but to what extent can it maintain its spot on top with slightly below average results? As long as MBC is a major deck, I expect Burn to stay as MBC cannot deal with the deck as it was able to handle W Tokens. Be ready for burn, in deck selection and especially in the board.

One of the biggest responses to Burn was a WR Tokens deck by MadarmeBK that did fantastic over the week. It used Conclave Phalanx, tokens, and burn to outrace Burn. The deck will be covered more in depth downwards on the page.


There is a big deck missing from these graphs – Affinity. The deck has slowly decreased in prominence, and it actually went below the 5% mark. This is one of the first times one of the 5 biggest decks – Affinity, Delver, MBC, Stompy, and UR Fiend – went below the 5% mark in over a month. Another interesting bit is how the “Other” group again grew in prominence. This means that it is very viable to play a smaller deck and get results. This is the second week in a row that this happened and I’m watching to see if it continues.


Through this graph, the decks with the best weeks are quite clear – Delver, Stompy, and UR Fiend. Esper Fae Combo had the most mediocre week it has had in a while, but still not too bad. The decks that did the worst are MBC and UB Angler. Burn had a week that is slightly below average, but not terrible. Nothing is too shocking here, but it is always an interesting graph to look at.

Thanks for reading! – Najay1


1. Stompy – After a down week, Stompy came back in force. Again the deck was not super popular at 5.88% of the meta, but it did great from those pilots. With a 57.14% cash rate and a 62.75% win rate, Stompy ran over a lot of the competition this week. At least part of this can be attributed to a strong matchup v. Burn and a weak matchup v. Affinity. Additionally, as rogue decks have started to make more of an impact on the scene, Stompy is able to make many of these easy matchups. I still like Stompy right now, although if Burn drops in popularity, so may Stompy’s results.

2. Delver – Interesting that Delver increased its popularity up to 8.82% – the highest in a while. I would expect this is because Gut Shot has not been as close to as popular as many thought it would be. I think that the popularity of Delver is very important in determining whether the card is worth a spot in the board and if it continues to rise, then I would expect more Gut Shots to come out. This could make for a cyclical pattern in the meta, which would be very exciting. Delver still ran well on the top tables with a 38.10% cash rate and a 60.00% win rate. Delver still looks to be a fantastic choice for the meta, and more people will continue to make that choice.

3. UR Fiend – UR Fiend also had a good week, but not as strong as either of above with a 38.46% cash rate and a 53.49% win rate. One of the main stories to see is whether Gut Shot will become a staple of the deck. 3 of the 7 decks reported by Wizards played the card, most of them as a 2-3 of card in the main. This could very much improve their results against Delver, which has never been a great matchup for them. Additionally, if MBC remains big in the meta, I doubt this deck can become too great.


1. Affinity – Affinity is here less so because of its popularity, but because of its lack of it this week. For the first week in a very long time, Affinity made up of less than 5% of the meta at 4.62%. Affinity’s share of the meta has slowly moved down and down throughout the DtK season and now into the current season. The deck was around 8.5% prominence consistently until 2 weeks ago and last week it dropped to 6.40% prominence. In addition to its shrinking popularity, the deck didn’t do great with an 18.18% cash rate and 47.22% win rate. Now there were only 11 Affinity pilots this week so be aware of high potential uncertainty in those numbers. Despite all of this, I do not expect the deck to shrink much lower in prominence. The deck is widely regarded as a top deck and it is well known among the Pauper community. The lower popularity does mean that it may be safe to prepare for less Affinity in your sideboard, at least for the upcoming week.

2. MBC – The now 2nd most popular deck in the meta, MBC made up 12.18% of all decks. This is the lowest it has been in a few weeks and comes directly out of the difficulty of facing burn. In the last season, MBC was 5-28 versus Burn and it does not have too many strong options to shore up the matchup. The best black life gain spell is Gary and that is already a 4-of. Other than that, the two main life gain spells are Corrupt and Tendrils of Agony, both bad versus Burn. Unless Burn goes back downwards, I do not think MBC will or should rise up again as evidenced by a 20.69% cash rate and a 44.68% win rate, both sub-par.

3. UB Angler – This last deck has become another very common force in the meta over the past few weeks. Making up 8.40% of the meta, UB Angler has exploded onto the scene very similarly to last season when it did the same things. Sadly, it is also putting up more sub-par results with a 25.00% cash rate and a 42.37% win rate, something of a trend recently. UB Angler has not had enough strong weeks to counter the amount of bad weeks that it has experienced and continues to struggle – especially with Burn being such a major part of the meta. Not a fan of this deck right now, but you must be ready to face it.

Deck to Watch For

Hexproof – In a MBC dominated meta, Hexproof would not seem to be a great option, but it has done surprisingly well with a 50% cash rate and a 66.67% win rate this week out of 4 tries (which isn’t very significant). The reason why Hexproof seems to be a contender is its strength against a lot of the other top decks. Burn is the most popular deck and Hexproof can easily beat that deck as it has built in lifegain, a faster clock, and doesn’t let Burn kill its creatures (although that usually doesn’t happen). Even though it isn’t great against MBC, it has serious game against Burn, Delver, and UB Angler – the 3 other top decks. If MBC stays down, Hexproof may end up surprising some people.

Brew of the Week

[d title=”RW Tokens by MadarameBK – June 9th, 2015 (Pauper)”]
Tokens Package
4 Battle Screech
4 Raise the Alarm
4 Squadron Hawk
3 Conclave Phalanx
3 Guardians’ Pledge
2 Veteran Armorer

Rebel Package
4 Ramosian Lieutenant
2 Aven Riftwatcher
1 Bound in Silence
1 Nightwind Glider

4 Lightning Bolt
2 Firebolt
2 Flame Slash
1 Journey to Nowhere

Other Spells
1 Faithless Looting
1 Prismatic Strands

4 Boros Garrison
4 Plains
4 Wind-Scarred Crag
3 Ancient Den
3 Great Furnace
3 Mountain

3 Pyroblast
2 Electrickery
2 Gorilla Shaman
2 Lumithread Field
2 Molten Rain
1 Prismatic Strands
1 Disenchant
1 Patrician’s Scorn
1 Relic of Progenitus [/d]

Here is the MTGGoldfish page. By far one of my favorite brews to come out recently, this deck really utilizes a card many had written off – [c]Conclave Phalanx[/c]. I’m using the latest list that madarameBK used as he made the list and knows it better than I do.

The deck is mainly 3 parts as split into above. The tokens package is the main part of the list and it creates the main aggro focus of the deck. The deck has lots of burn and removal to back up the aggression. Lastly, it has a rebels package (which some other versions do not have) centered around Ramosian Lieutenant for the search function. With that it can find cards valuable against various decks. Aven Riftwatcher is great against Burn and other aggro decks, Nightwind Glider can take down all of MBC’s 2/2s, and it can even get Bound in Silence for removal on demand.

This is an innovative list that was designed to take down the current meta and looks to be a fantastic meta deck. I’m not sure how it will fare in the future, but I love this deck for the upcoming week and expect it to leap in popularity.


1. Burn will remain as the top deck, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see it decline a bit in popularity.
2. MBC and UB Angler will continue to have large followings, but will put up below average results.
3. The RW Tokens brew will find more success and potentially could be a breakout deck for the week.
4. UR Fiend will not have as strong of a week as it has the past two weeks.


With thanks to Tom Scudder. Check out his Facebook and his Spreadsheet.


PCT Results

The PCT is a weekly tournament hosted on by LongTimeGone. It occurs Tuesday at 8 pm Eastern.



Mid-Week Pauper Meta Report: May 28, 2015

ghostly flicker art

About this article

This is a weekly report on the online pauper meta. The data it uses are from last Wednesday to this Wednesday. It looks at the data that Tom Scud collects from a selection of dailies. He watches the replays on MTGO to figure out how each person did, not just the 3-1s and 4-0s that Wizards publishes. This allows us to see the whole iceberg and figure out how well each deck did in total. Now, this data is just for this week and just from the data Tom collects, so it does ignore the other 3-1/4-0 results which means it is not perfect. Additionally, the conclusions in this article are just based on this week, and as the meta is fluid, the top decks shift. This is intended to see what decks are performing well this week and is not necessarily a reflection of the deck’s overall strength.

This uses the data from the 5/21, 5/22 evening, 5/24 afternoon, and 5/24 evening results

No decks really exploded onto the scene this week and W Tokens continued its fall, but UB Angler has now risen to make up more than 5% of the field and had a quite decent week. The other major story is that the DtK season is wrapping up and Modern Masters 2015 is coming in as the hot new thing.


The prominence graphs are above and really there is not too much fluctuation from the prominence in all of the field and just the 3-1 and 4-0 results. The only deck that increased/decreased by more than 2% was Esper Fae. This shows a decently even metagame for the week and not the large jumps that can often occur.


The graph above demonstrated the 2 groups of decks this week. Esper Fae is above all with over 60% cash and win rates and just after that UR Fiend, UB Angler, Delver, and Burn are all very close to each other with very strong weeks. Affinity, MBC, and Stompy did not do as well, with the entire group having less than 30% cash rates and a losing record. Stompy had a much worse week than I expected, but other than that this graph is not super surprising.

As always thanks for reading, Najay1!


1. Esper Fae Combo – Esper Fae continues its hot streak at the top of the charts with a 62.5% cash rate and a 65.45% win rate. It was very polar in the results as it had 10 decks in the money and 4 decks winless with only 2 in between. With the arrival of Gut Shot, the deck now is much less safe going off while the opponent is tapped out and could suffer as a result, but for the current season Esper Fae is leaving on top. Look for another strong week from Esper Fae.

2. UR Fiend – A deck that has not been racking up the numbers recently, it made a strong showing this week as it put up a 43.75% cash rate and 57.41% win rate. Despite that, I do not expect the deck to be a major power in the meta in the immediate future. The question with the deck going forward is to what extent the deck will utilize Gut Shot, if at all. I am a bit surprised about the amount of UR Fiend with the dominance of MBC as it is not a strong match up at all and I would not look for the deck to be great during the end of the season.

3. UB Angler – The best Gurmag Angler deck is starting to really become a deck to watch out for. Last week the deck just missed 5% prominence and this week it barely got over the mark with a 5.06% prominence. With the larger sample size, the deck’s results can now be analyzed more accurately and this week it did quite well with a 43.75% cash rate and a 55.56% win rate. The Delver version of the deck is now by far the better contender and has put up very strong results. I really like this deck and its current version which have done better than the Turbo Angler decks of last season.


1. W Tokens – The past flavor of the week deck is now diminishing back to its normal size with a 3.8% prominence across the 4 dailies. Those decks did not have strong numbers either as it had a 8.33% cash rate and a 42.11% win rate, not the most stellar. The win rate does indicate the cash rate should probably be higher (as 1/3 of the pilots went 2-X), but it could also indicate that the top decks were prepared for W Tokens. As the hate starts to fade away, the deck may be able to make a comeback.

2. Stompy – Stompy is a deck that I thought would be great in the coming weeks, but it certainly did not have a great performance this week. With a 22.73% cash rate and a 45.07% win rate, the deck did not do as well as expected. One of the reasons for the failure is a 2-6 record versus Esper Fae (not including the data from the 5/24 evening daily) which was its second most common match up. This was mostly just a bad draw for Stompy and they probably will not meet too much in the future. Overall, I can see this deck doing decent to great before Gut Shot hits at which time the future is unknown.

3. Affinity – Affinity also had a below average week, again, as it took home a 27.27% cash rate and a 44.93% win rate. The deck had as many 0-X as it did 3-1s and it placed 0 4-0s. The deck has been mediocre pretty consistently in the season, but the addition of Gut Shot ma change its fate. On one hand, Gut Shot is just terrible against Affinity, as it can basically hit nothing except Flayer Husk (which isn’t even in every list). Yet, Delver isn’t a bad matchup (16-16 in this season) and can be tuned to be a great one and Delver may be put out of the meta to some extent (although it is currently underplayed so we will see). The results of this deck in the next season will be interesting to watch.

Deck Spotlight

MBC – MBC was again the most popular deck with 51 entries through 4 dailies. That leads to a prominence of 16.14% which is down from the more than 20% it packed last week. The deck was below average this week with a 29.41% cash rate and a 48.78% win rate. These are both a bit below average, but are not as bad as some of the numbers seen in the past. Interesting again was the difference between the cash and win rate. Overall, the deck was again did not merit the top spot in the meta, but this week was a bit better than some of its past results.

Brew of the Week

UR Tron Fae Combo – This is not the newest deck on the block and has been around for a decent while, and has never really put up more than a few copies in the results. The list is similar to RUG Tron, but it does not rely on big fatties to get the job done, but the Cloud of Fae win con like in Esper Fae. I do like this deck because it seems to have more resistance to MBC and also can win by Kaervek’s Torch or Sage’s Row Denizen. An interesting list and one that I think more should check out.


Thanks to Tom the Scud. Check out his Facebook and his Big Fat Spreadsheet.


PCT Results

The PCT is a weekly tournament hosted on by LongTimeGone. It occurs Tuesday at 8 pm est.