I’ve spent a lot of time with music – listening, performing, analyzing and so on – and that means I often get songs stuck in my head. Sometimes they’re real songs, sometimes they’re songs I make up, and sometimes they’re half-songs from weird media I’ve listened to. One of my favorite podcasts, MBMBAM, once posited a sequel to the Tracy Chapman song “Fast Car” – the sequel, of course, is “Faster Car”, and that bit has been living in my brain for a while. Sometimes, these earworms result in deck ideas, which is good because it means they’re actually productive.
This all came together when James Keating messaged me about a sweet Kaldheim spoiler that I immediately fell in love with as I realized it could easily help us drive some fast cars across the border and into the red zone.
Magda has that magical “becomes tapped” text we all know and love from Kaladesh block that clues us in to some vehicle synergies. Magda turns all Dwarves into winners – whenever they race, they earn treasure and treasure can buy us new cars… or Dragons. Yeah, I think we’ll be buying a lot of dragons.
Currently, Dwarves are not one of the mightiest tribes in Magic, which means our lineup will be limited for now. I’m sure Kaldheim will bring some massive upgrades in the Dwarf department, and I assume we’ll see some in the D&D set too, but for now, this is what we’re working with.
Torbran is currently the number one Dwarf available in mono red, so he’s an easy inclusion – the problem is, our vehicles aren’t red, and fixing that requires way more work than it’s worth. That said, he helps our Dragons a bit as well as bolstering our Dwarves in normal combat, so he’s included.
Things fall off pretty quickly, with Rimrock Knight the most familiar to Standard players. Dwarven Recruiter has a powerful effect, but the worse Dwarves are, the less impressive it seems. Dwarven Bloodboiler is a bit of a nonbo with our Vehicles, but it does offer an alternative way to tap Dwarves and trigger Magda, and Dwarven Blastminer can tap itself.
A few changelings shore up the ranks of Dwarves here.. but wait, that’s only eight – nine if you count Magda! Surely that’s not enough to…
Oh, okay, I see how it is. Well, now we have sixteen Dwarves, which is at least moderately respectable. I look forward to casting Dwarven Recruiter and stacking all of these on top of my library for the memes.
So those are the pilots – where are the cars? Well, we’ve got a veritable celebrity garage full – here are the nine vehicles we’ll be using to drive up our Treasure count and drive down the prices on the Dragons in our deck.
These three are my favorites, as they all provide some form of advantage, whether in the form of bolts from Skysovereign, filtering from the Copter or top five looks from Weatherlight. It feels thematically treacherous to put Weatherlight in a deck with none of its crew, but you know what? Maybe it’s a rental.
These are the mid-tier vehicles – they do a decent job in combat, but they’re not the most exciting options. Untethered Express almost jumps up to the higher tier since it grows turn by turn, but the rest are solidly B-level.
These two are just here to fill empty spaces in the garage – at least both of them bring some cards in the bargain.
So now that we’ve covered the Dwarves and the Vehicles, what does the Dragon lineup look like? I’m not counting the Changelings, of course, as it’ll be a sad day if we ever have to search those up. I didn’t want to overload the deck with too many high-cost cards, but there are nine Dragons in this deck that we can summon with our treasures, either by using Magda’s ability or just by casting them out of our hand.
Lathliss will often enter first, as her ability to make more 5/5 Dragon tokens can really take over the board if left unchecked. The firebreathing ability seems like an afterthought, but with three or more Dragons on the battlefield it starts to add up very quickly.
Or should we get this one first? Utvara Hellkite makes 6/6s when Dragons attack, so it’s more likely you’ll want it second, actually – get Lathliss, then Utvara Hellkite, getting a 5/5, then attack with Lathliss for a 6/6 and you’ve got a huge army all of a sudden.
Actually, do you want this one first? Warstorm Surge is also in the deck, but Terror of the Peaks does a great job of turning Dragons into direct damage – it’s even better with Lathliss and Utvara Hellkite spitting out tokens.
The final boss of Upper Blackrock Spire continues to make its way into red-heavy Dragon decks – absent Terror or Warstorm Surge, it does nothing when it enters, but when it manages to attack, it can achieve a lot in a hurry. Put some boots on it if you can!
Once this deck starts to snowball a Dragon advantage, Hellkite Charger is exactly what it wants – search this up, attack and then use your actual land to pay for the ability and attack some more. That’s more Utvara Hellkite tokens (and thus more Terror of the Peaks damage) as well as more Drakuseth triggers.
Wait a minute, do we have another Dragon that wants to be on the table first? Scourge of Valkas may not be huge, but it makes up for it with the scaling nature of its trigger. Actually, I think Scourge wants to come down later, as otherwise its triggered ability is going to be fairly unimpressive.
If there’s a problematic creature that needs to be incinerated, or even better, a player with a low life total who needs to be eliminated, Spawn of Thraxes is here to solve your problem. It’s a shame we don’t have ways to recur it, but that’s what we get for playing mono red.
We’re missing some removal options in this deck, but Steel Hellkite can help shore things up if it manages to connect. A localized Engineered Explosives can really stir things up, especially in the late game when problem permanents need to be dealt with before they end things.
As long as Magda is around, this factory-sized familiar can churn out seven damage blasts turn after turn and eliminate competing creatures one by one. If not, it’s a bit disappointing as “just” a 5/5.
I’m sure you’re itching to see what the full deck list looks like, so here it is! I’m hoping to update this one later in the spoiler cycle as we hopefully see some more Dwarves, Vehicles and Dragons to raise this deck’s power level.