There’s no question what deck you need to beat in Standard right now. Brad, Corey, and BBD put the same 75 cards into 3 of the Top 4 spots at GP Denver, playing a pretty stock version of Temur Energy. Now you’ll need to find a way to get a leg up on the competition, and playing all of the key cards with some sweet additions from black could be the best way to attack the mirror.
The energy mechanic brought some serious power to Standard and will be around long after Ixalan. The highlight is the “mythic uncommon” of Kaldesh draft in Longtusk Cub. A 2/2 for 2 is a fine rate, but nothing to get excited about. Converting every two energy into a +1/+1 counter, however, creates an incredibly tough-to-deal-with and efficient creature. The Cub producing two energy just for connecting allows it to snowball out of control on its own. A 2-drop that doubles as a powerhouse in the late game is a massive payoff for playing an energy deck.
Rogue Refiner combines power with energy and card advantage. A 3-mana 3/2 can hit reasonably hard, and you’re getting a free counter for your Longtusk Cub and a replacement card for that 3-mana investment. This is strong in decks that can’t use energy, and near broken in decks that can.
Servant of the Conduit is a nice producer and user of energy. A 2/2 for 2 can still be a relevant attacker early and late, and the ramp plus color fixing make Servant a great creature.
Whirler Virtuoso allows you to use all of your stockpiled energy to go wide. You’re already getting 3 power for 3 mana, and that only scales as you build up energy. Creating evasive threats at instant speed is too much for many decks to handle.
Bristling Hydra plays out very differently than many of your other energy creatures in that you want to sit on your energy to be able to activate the Hydra when needed. That said, it’s a 4/3 creature for 4 mana that invalidates removal spells and makes blocking extremely difficult.
Glorybringer allows you to go over the top with a hasty Dragon that can kill opposing creatures. This ability to break through and pull in card advantage gives you more great late game.
The splash to go beyond Temur comes in The Scarab God. This is one of the best ways to break the mirror, and it’s devastating against graveyard strategies like God-Pharaoh’s Gift. The Scarab God starts turning your excess mana into more creatures, creating more energy and allowing you to go wide. In the mirror, being able to continually add to the board and have a God that can’t be killed by anything is ungodly.
Attune with Aether has been quietly busted in Standard. The free energy is a counter on something like Longtusk Cub or 2/3rds of a Thopter token from Whirler Virtuoso. You’re also replacing the Attune with a land, providing color fixing.
Harnessed Lightning is the best removal spell even for many decks that don’t utilize energy. In this deck, you can scale it up to massive amounts, use the extra energy, or just use it as an “energy ritual.” Abrade gives you more early interaction while being able to kill Gifts and Gearhulks. Magma Spray provides some extra early interaction and potentially exile Scrapheap Scroungers or a God.
Chandra, Torch of Defiance is finally getting her time to shine. With four great abilities and Servants to curve into the turn-3 planeswalker dream, she’s a great way to handle tough creatures out of G/B, Zombies, and the mirror especially.
The Vehicles give the deck another way to fight back against sweepers while dodging much of the format’s best removal (outside of Abrade). Aethersphere Harvester lets you race and Skysovereign, Consul Flagship is pure power to take over the game.
Energy decks will be a huge part of Standard long after the Ixalan rotation hits, so be prepared to fight these strategies on many levels for some time to come!