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Deck of the Day – Red Aggro

It’s definitely been the summer for green and white. Dromoka’s Command held its throne at the top of Standard, and aside from that we’ve seen Jace, Eldrazi, Languish, and other cards make serious impacts. Red had felt lost until Thermo-Alchemist came around. We haven’t seen a true red aggro deck in some time, though.

That no longer needs to be the case. You have enough aggressive creatures and some powerful burn spells to strike fear in the hearts of your opponents.

Incendiary Flow and Collective Defiance added reach to the pool of red cards. Both are costed efficiently—Flow can deal with a number of problematic creatures for red thanks to the exile clause, and Defiance is a perfect top end.

 

You’re not going to be using any Outnumbers or Fiery Impulses in this deck. Lightning Axe can sit quietly in the sideboard for when it’s needed. If you can’t hit the opponent, you’re simply not interested! Instead, Fiery Temper and Exquisite Firecraft round out your burn suite. With lots of options to go to your opponent’s head, you’d better keep your life total high when playing against red aggro!

We’ve seen the success of Mono-White Humans with 22 1-drop creatures in it. This deck doesn’t get quite that high, but 17 creatures that can be deployed on the first turn is still quite aggressive!

 

Falkenrath Gorger is a nice 2-power creature for 1 that can also allow your other discard outlets to turn into card advantage. Insolent Neonate has pseudo-evasion, especially for an early creature, so it can get in a few hits before cashing in for a madness spell.

Goblin Glory Chaser is a heavy hitter if it can get through a single time, which is pretty likely for a turn-1 play. If not, you have cards like Incendiary Flow to help clear a path when needed. Zurgo Bellstriker makes sure to get in early and also dash in late to help play around sweepers.

Lightning Berserker is akin to a Fireball with buyback. You can cast it turn 1, turn all of your excess mana into damage, and also force your opponents to leave back blockers even when you have nothing in play. If they don’t have any blockers to leave untapped, a Berserker off the top can end the game in an instant.

Thermo-Alchemist offers at least 1 unblockable damage per turn. Getting a bonus point on each of your burn spells isn’t too shabby, and that’s before even mentioning that Alchemist can actually block a number of creatures in the format while living to tell the tale.

Furyblade Vampire can come in for huge chunks of damage, and is your best madness outlet. A 4-power creature for 2 mana with trample is massive, and turning on your Falkenrath Gorgers to discard other Vampires or Fiery Tempers is excellent.

Mono-Red Aggro has fallen out of favor with White Humans taking the top aggro spot. That may no longer be the case. Getting in some early damage before Liliana, the Last Hope, Kozilek’s Return, and Languish come down is crucial in today’s format. White doesn’t have reach after the initial onslaught, but red does. This could be the ticket for aggro players in Standard!

Red Aggro

Andrew Kemper, Top 4 in a Standard IQ

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