See red is an interesting option in red too, but we already have Solidarity to give first strike. Theres a red 2cc enchantment from Kaladesh though I can't remember it's namebut gives +2+1 and menace. Menace is a good form evasion especially on a flier.
Flying is great which is why I run One With The Wind in addition to Cartouche Of Knowledge, giving me 8 ways to give evasion. While I like Stormtamer a blue one drop isn't where our mana lets us be. The manabase is mediocre at best because of the low land count. I've had times I couldn't cast both blue spells in hand without getting blown out because i no longer had dive down.
Thoughts on One with the wind? I personally don't like temmet that much and was thinking of running this instead. Why Dive Down over sheltering light? is hexproof to deal with vraska's really worth more than scry 1, especially considering U is harder to get to than W with the mana base?
Why doesn't this deck maindeck Spell Pierce ?
The whole gameplan revolves around sticking auras on non-hexproof creatures and having a 1-mana counterspell to avoid 2-for-1's seems like a no brainer.
One with the Wind also seems really good here for the "voltron" plan, rather than Legion's Landing which is probably better to grind post-board as the deck doesn't go wide that fast to reliably flip it and also lacks the mana to consistently sink into it.
Hey guys, just wanted to chime in on the dive down/sheltering light discussion from my personal experience.
Sheltering light is often redundant with adanto vanguard if the life doesn't matter. Scry is nice, but it really shines in protecting from targeted removal or sweepers on non vanguard targets you've started to suit up.
Dive down is great against exile/ control effects.
Cards I want to see sheltering light against:
board clears that aren't settle the wreckage or hour of devestation or pinpoint removal that isn't exile or neg toughness, usually a nonvanguard target, and in combat to punch through 1 or 2 blockers and not give up board presence.
Cards I want to see spell pierce against:
Interaction or remova that isn't hostage taker turns 1-3 that costs more than 1-2 cmc.
Cards I want to see negate against:
Anything that gets rid of an adanto vanguard clock post T3.
Grixis midrange is a real deck and you're going to see push/red/contempt removal but maybe also moment of craving and hour of devestation out of the board.
Red has the one drop that can punch through protection.
White also has cast out, ixalan' binding, and baffling end.
Blue may have unsummon if it's tempo or counters of their own to stop the combat trick.
Dive down is incredibly relevant against a huge swath of the field right now, but you can also use it to survive combat in some situations too. The issue stems from the mana base. Dive down requires a stronger blue mana base for T3 onward after we develop our first two attackers. I don't have a good answer for that one. Maybe the 2/2 hexproof unblockable ascend guy? Shift blue to the main color and white as our secondary color? Not sure here.
I tried the UW list at the last Standard Showdown, didn't perform too well due to inexperience (I usually don't play aggro decks ). The strategy is as simple as it gets, but execution is much harder. Often it's correct to delay the 2-drop to be able to protect it, the only early drops I jam without remorse are the embalm/eternalize cats. Those two reanimating threats also give the deck so much reach.
Since I only had 3 Srams, I played 2 Temmets and they work really great in combination with the double strike cat. I hit for 14 damage each turn (5/5 double strike unblockable and a Adanto Vanguard geared up with a blue cartouche). Too bad my opponent gained 16 life each turn with a flipped Adanto and double Anointer Priest/Anointed Procession. I think the Tocatli Honor Guard (that I didn't have in the deck at that time, hindsight 20/20) would prevent them from stabilizing and I could have easily raced.
I think the Siren Stormtamer is also way better than the 2/1 Vampire. Extra protection for spells that circumvent indestructible is important. They also help against Settle the Wreckage.
That's also why I play no Sheltering Light, but the full playset of Dive Down, although a 1-3 split seems reasonable as well. Indestructible is only necessary on cards like Sram and Temmet, everything else comes back as a black or white zombie cat anyway so it doesn't really matter when it dies. The extra toughness helps against most -x/-x effects and also against Yahenni's Expertise.
This deck should not be so inactive considering how quickly it's picking up wins. Another UW auras list just top-8'd a pptq.
My current list is pretty stock, except I don't like snubhorns at all, and dropped them for more sacred cats. I also really like one with the wind as a 2-of. I'm also running Aether Meltdown in place of Baffling End, flash makes it much more playable and Aura makes it a cantrip with sram out. It's also more useful vs cmc 4+ creatures.
I'm also testing a different list. I feel like the major weakness of this list is recovering after having our major threats dealt with. There used to be a UW aggro deck that did very well recovering from board wipes and the like, and it's grindiness made it a really solid meta call. Oketra's Monument is the deck i'm talking about.
Oketra's really helps the deck pull ahead in longer, grindier games as yet another source of card advantage, and turning those topdecked creatures into useful draws rather than things you wish you didn't draw over another aura or something. and helps deal with removal. It also lets us shelve Baffling End and instead play Fairgrounds Warden as mainboard removal. Oketra's also gives the deck even more of a go-wide option, letting us close out games either with 1 supercharged voltron creature, or tons of tokens.
I like that we can always attack with all those unblockable dorks, so we don't have to play removal spells at all G1. We can also grind with several of them on the battlefield, and not attach auras on a single creature all that often. It also means Spell Pierce gets better and Dive Down / Sheltered Light less necessary since we hardly involve our creatures into trading steps. We almost only need to counter non-creature removal spells (the only exceptions being Glorybringer and Walking Ballista).
I think it's somewhat key to dig for Squire's Devotion because the format is very aggro. Even UB control can slam the Scarab God early and turn the corner right away. The combo with Vanguard isn't even cute because we must pay 4 life very often and keep the guy on board at any cost sometimes.
Edit : I'm exploring red a little bit and I am quite attracted by an evasive approach with Tilonalli's Crown. The manabase seems rather good. To go with Crown though, I can't run 1-toughness creatures besides Vanguard (goodbye Pouncer and Herald), so the most obvious replacements I can think of are Thriving Turtle (lul) and Kari Zev, Skyship Raider.
I'm wondering if ascend is really worth all the hassle. It seems to me like there are three different ways this deck plays out.
1) Aura stomp, we outrace our opponents and land a sram or a pouncer and some auras and beat face
2) Creature grind, our threats get answered and instead of going tall we go wide
3) Lose. If we can't do one of the 2 above we don't win.
As much as I like the idea of ascend, and as easily reachable as it is, I think we're warping the deck in pursuit of ascend when we should instead be making it more overall consistent. Legion's Landing is the first card that comes to mind that should be cut, and then snubhorn. Neither feel good to draw at pretty much any point in the game, and while a flipped legion's landing will sometimes help stall out games, I'd almost always rather draw an aura or an actual threat. Ditto for snubhorn
I wouldn't mind putting in three Negates or Essence Scatters (depending on the matchup) in place of Legions Landing. This probably means switching an Island for a Plains. Also, I have switched my SkyMarchers Aspirant with Sacred Cats at this point.
I've found life gain to be pretty important to the deck, that's why I run Glory-Bound Initiate in addition to Sacred Cat. Against any red variant it can mean the difference between winning and losing. I've also considered Squire's Devotion, but I really don't think it's good enough.
I came to the same conclusions with the deck - resilience is key to try and prevent 3 for 1's with spot removal with recursion as a secondary condition to help rebuild a board. Any other cards need to have a key role or very good ability to make the cut.
I agree that my first flex-spot is the Sacred Cat (currently down to 2 to test a Hope of Ghirapur, which is to hedge against control but feels meh so far), but I'm a little higher on Legion's Landing, particularly against heavy removal to keep a threat on board, help you get to 5 mana for Embalm/Eternalising and mitigate any flooding. I matches where you are racing I can see it being less effective. I run 3 Landing and haven't been cutting them in sideboarding, but maybe I should be considering cutting 1.
Nice, what are your thoughts on unsummon? It feels we are more of a tempo/aggro deck. Another card that has been mvp for me is champion of wits. Too often I need to cycle cards to get a proper combination.
I have only been playing it for a little bit but it has been really strong in testing. Being able to just win without attacking has been great for dodging settle the wreckage. The deck can either play out like a sram deck or just get the combo of wand equipped to paladin + lifelink. The paladin has been great to just give lifelink to outside of being equipped, then swing with, kind of a weaker vigilance. It can just win as early as turn 4 if you don't get any interference.
Um...this question is going to sound a bit stupid, but it's bothering me, so I'll just get it over with. Why do these creatures have two different species'? Did an elf figure out how to have sex with a tree?
Also, isn't Dauntless Bodyguard a better option than Stormtamer here ?
It lacks evasion but is more aggressive and the defensive ability is free to activate.
I've moved away from this deck after a 2 FNMs so I can't say anything about the new RW builds, but the Stormtamer protects you against exile removal AND more importantly Settle the Wreckage. The Bodyguard is a decent card though that can possibly fit in if there are still some flex slots.