Every time I see a mono-white deck, or nearly mono-white deck, that puts up good numbers, it catches me by surprise. With some solid creatures and some of the better removal spells from over the past year, white decks have had a lot of game. While there may be little incentive to stay mono-colored considering how powerful the mana fixing is in Standard, a nearly-mono-white aggro deck putting up numbers still impresses me.
At W, you have some powerful options. Mardu Woe-Reaper and Kytheon, Hero of Akros are decent, but neither blows anyone away. With so many 2/3 creatures in the format, and many of them coming down at 2 mana (yeah, I’m talking about you, Sylvan Advocate and Ayli, Eternal Pilgrim), you can’t load up on 1-drops. They do help add an early presence, however, which is nice.
At WW, we start looking at some serious power and potential card advantage. Knight of the White Orchid is a great card, especially on the draw in a nearly-mono-white deck. Being able to play Knight on turn 3 into another 2-drop is an incredible tempo swing. The other 2-drops for this deck are Consul’s Lieutenant and Anafenza, Kin-Tree Spirit. Both cards have the potential to grow smaller creatures and take over the game.
Towards the top end of the curve, at 1WWW, you have Archangel of Tithes. This is one of my favorites cards in Standard, but I haven’t found the opportunity to play it in a high-level event. I really like what this card can do, but finding the perfect home has eluded me. Perhaps this is it?
As for the splash, with both Canopy Vista and Prairie Stream in the format, and thanks to Knight of the White Orchid and fetchlands, you can very easily splash without needing to commit a basic of another color. Den Protector and Dromoka’s Command are too powerful to omit as excellent early and late cards. Reflector Mage may be the best card in Standard. The tempo it provides and the potential to win the game when opponents lose their creature and can’t cast anything the following turn is phenomenal.
Splashing blue always opens the door for sideboard countermagic, so like every other deck in Standard, the blue has to be on the table. Aggressive creatures backed up by Reflector Mage and countermagic is definitely a winning formula in Standard today.