Confession time: I have a soft spot in my heart for Jeskai Ascendancy combo. The card is just flat-out sweet, if not incredibly broken. I ended up going 11-5 at Pro Tour Khans of Tarkir with Ascendancy Combo and finished 11-5 at PT Dragons of Tarkir with Ascendancy tokens. I had my Ascendancy Combo deck built for Modern before Dig Through Time and Treasure Cruise were banned, so I never did get the chance to play it. With the rotation of Sylvan Caryatid and Retraction Helix, it appeared I might never get another opportunity to play this awesome deck.
I was wrong.
The Ascendancy combo deck is very much alive and well. With Jeskai Ascendancy and a mana creature, every 1-mana draw spell functions as a free loot. This helps find the relevant spells. Eventually, Treasure Cruise will make sure the loop continues for just 1 mana.
While this is all well and good, there sure is a lot of set up to start looting to find Cruises. I definitely need more. Mediocre draft common Elemental Uprising actually emerges as an all-star here. Creating a 4/4 creature that also taps for mana and essentially has haste, since you target a land already in play, is awesome for the combo. Now, each 1-mana spell also nets a mana, and 2-mana spells like Dig Through Time are free.
It actually doesn’t take getting very far into the combo to win. Each iteration also grants all of your creatures a +1/+1 bonus, causing them to grow out of control quickly. If your opponent has blockers, that could create a problem, but Slip Through Space just happens to be a 1-mana cantrip that also forces your creature through! A perfect addition to the deck.
Briber’s Purse is an awesome addition to this combo deck as it can function as a 0-mana way to activate Ascendancy and start the loop with a tapped mana creature or can help force through a giant creature if you can’t find a Slip. You also get the occasional added bonus of being able to stop an attacking creature multiple times, so sometimes this gains 8+ life and is an unexpected difference maker!
Jeskai Ascendancy is such a broken card and tons of fun to try to figure out. This is definitely a deck I’m going to try while I still can!