Meta Snapshot II

Posted: April 16, 2018

The decks in our snapshot are not tiered by its strength, but rather popularity. It’s very hard to gauge the raw power of the deck in a “Best of One” scenario as there is no sideboarding and you rarely play more than a single game against the same opponent. Fast, proactive decks have a significant advantage as the games last but a few minutes, your opponent’s deck has minimal influence on your gameplan and you need not guess what you need to answer in your mulligan. As such, RDW is on a tier of its own when it comes to raw power.

Below you will find all the decks with sample decklists. Some of the decks come with included budget guides, making it easy for anyone to jump in and try them out. All our lists have been assembled at Diamond and Master level.

The absolute king of the format. With Ramunap Ruins and Rampaging Ferocidon legal, and the most efficient removal cards stuck in Kaladesh, this hyper-aggressive deck is THE deck to beat.

Deck: MaggoGx's Master Tier RDW {r}
14Mountain 1Abrade {1}{R}4Ahn-Crop Crasher {2}{R}
4Ramunap Ruins 4Lightning Strike {1}{R}1Captain Lannery Storm {2}{R}
4Sunscorched Desert 3Magma Spray {R}3Daring Buccaneer {R}
4Earthshaker Khenra {1}{R}
4Fanatical Firebrand {R}
4Goblin Trailblazer {1}{R}
3Hazoret the Fervent {3}{R}
3Rampaging Ferocidon {2}{R}
2Rekindling Phoenix {2}{R}{R}
2Rigging Runner {R}
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The popularity of UB control continues to drop as more and more people realize Scarab God alone is not the end-all answer to the unique conditions of Bo1. The absence of Torrential Gearhulk and Fatal Push make it hard to deal with aggro decks, and UB players are often forced to trade-in the control-mirror matchups for even a chance at beating them.

Deck: Nossr50's Master Tier UB Control {u}{b}
1Arch of Orazca 1Bontu's Last Reckoning {1}{B}{B}3Champion of Wits {2}{U}
1Desert of the Glorified 2Cancel {1}{U}{U}1Tetzimoc, Primal Death {4}{B}{B}
1Fetid Pools 2Censor {1}{U}2The Scarab God {3}{U}{B}
3Field of Ruin 1Commit // Memory {3}{U}//{4}{U}{U}1Vizier of Many Faces {2}{U}{U}
1Ipnu Rivulet 1Doomfall {2}{B}
6Island 1Duress {B}
4Submerged Boneyard 3Essence Scatter {1}{U}
7Swamp 3Golden Demise {1}{B}{B}
2Hieroglyphic Illumination {3}{U}
3Moment of Craving {1}{B}
2Negate {1}{U}
2Search for Azcanta {1}{U}
2Supreme Will {2}{U}
1Torment of Hailfire {X}{B}{B}
3Vraska's Contempt {2}{B}{B}
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Wx Vampires are by far the most budget of all decks. Their lifelinking and swarming abilities make them difficult to take on for RDW and UB Control alike. They are vulnerable to board wipes but otherwise sticky and fast.

Deck: Bile's Master Tier BW Vampires {w}{b}
1Field of Ruin 4Call to the Feast {2}{W}{B}2Champion of Dusk {3}{B}{B}
2Forsaken Sanctuary 2Cast Out {3}{W}4Dusk Legion Zealot {1}{B}
1Ifnir Deadlands 2Ixalan's Binding {3}{W}4Legion Lieutenant {W}{B}
7Plains 2Legion's Landing {W}4Martyr of Dusk {1}{W}
4Shefet Dunes 2Moment of Craving {1}{B}2Skymarcher Aspirant {W}
9Swamp 4Queen's Commission {2}{W}
4Radiant Destiny {2}{W}
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Tokens generally come in two non-vampire variants: WG, using tribal cats, Tendershoot Dryads and sometimes Path of Discovery to quickly swarm the board and finish off their opponents. The second, more popular variant is uW. Using the white’s token package and Anointed procession this deck focuses on controlling the board, and uses the blue cards to refill its hand and dig/tutor for threats and answers.

Deck: UW Tokens {w}{u}
2Field of Ruin 3Anointed Procession {3}{W}2Adorned Pouncer {1}{W}
4Glacial Fortress 2Cast Out {3}{W}1Angel of Sanctions {3}{W}{W}
1Ipnu Rivulet 2Ixalan's Binding {3}{W}3Anointer Priest {1}{W}
2Irrigated Farmland 2Negate {1}{U}4Champion of Wits {2}{U}
4Island 1Pull from Tomorrow {X}{U}{U}1Glyph Keeper {3}{U}{U}
9Plains 1Search for Azcanta {1}{U}2Regal Caracal {3}{W}{W}
2Shefet Dunes 3Strategic Planning {1}{U}4Sacred Cat {W}
1Sunscourge Champion {2}{W}
1Vizier of Many Faces {2}{U}{U}
3Vizier of the Anointed {3}{U}
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The merfolk have gained in popularity as well. The refined lists, relying on combat tricks and positive trades to gain insurmountable tempo and momentum are seeing play at the highest of levels.

Deck: Mortomeh's Master Tier Merfolk {u}{g}
5Forest 4Deeproot Waters {2}{U}2Dive Down {U}4Deeproot Elite {1}{G}
2Hashep Oasis 2Unsummon {U}2Jadelight Ranger {1}{G}{G}
7Island 4Kumena's Speaker {G}
4Unclaimed Territory 3Kumena, Tyrant of Orazca {1}{G}{U}
3Woodland Stream 4Merfolk Branchwalker {1}{G}
4Merfolk Mistbinder {G}{U}
2Seafloor Oracle {2}{U}{U}
4Silvergill Adept {1}{U}
2Swift Warden {1}{G}{G}
2Tempest Caller {2}{U}{U}
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Another titan of Ixalan block that struggles to compete in the mummified world. BG explore focuses on a single mechanic, and is thereby vulnerable to engine removal (Lurking Chupacabra, Wildgrowth Walker…). If the engines stick and the deck stabilizes, it can easily blow even the toughest opponents out of the game.

Deck: BG Midrange {b}{g}
1Arch of Orazca 2Duress {B}2Carnage Tyrant {4}{G}{G}
1Evolving Wilds 3Liliana, Death's Majesty {3}{B}{B}2Deadeye Tracker {B}
2Field of Ruin 3Moment of Craving {1}{B}4Jadelight Ranger {1}{G}{G}
8Forest 4Vraska's Contempt {2}{B}{B}4Merfolk Branchwalker {1}{G}
2Hashep Oasis 2Vraska, Relic Seeker {4}{B}{G}3Ravenous Chupacabra {2}{B}{B}
2Ifnir Deadlands 2Seekers' Squire {1}{B}
8Swamp 1Tetzimoc, Primal Death {4}{B}{B}
4Wildgrowth Walker {1}{G}
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Gruul Monsters is the deck that’s gained the most in popularity since the last snapshot. As players are slowly acquiring more and more rares and mythics this deck is jam packed full of, the immense power and stickiness of this deck is starting to show. Dinosaurs are a weaker variant of Gruul monsters.

Deck: Macabr's Master Tier Gruul Monsters {r}{g}
6Forest 3Abrade {1}{R}1Captain Lannery Storm {2}{R}
3Hashep Oasis 4Magma Spray {R}4Earthshaker Khenra {1}{R}
8Mountain 2Struggle // Survive {2}{R}//{1}{G}4Glorybringer {3}{R}{R}
4Rootbound Crag 4Jadelight Ranger {1}{G}{G}
4Sheltered Thicket 4Merfolk Branchwalker {1}{G}
4Rekindling Phoenix {2}{R}{R}
4Resilient Khenra {1}{G}
1Rhonas the Indomitable {2}{G}
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Approach of the Second Sun is unjustly amongst the least popular decks of the format. While missing some tools from Kaladesh, UW and even Esper Approach are the cheapest control decks that have the upper hand over UB control and have an easier way of surviving the aggro decks as well.

Deck: UW Approach {w}{u}
1Arch of Orazca 4Approach of the Second Sun {6}{W}
2Field of Ruin 3Baffling End {1}{W}
4Glacial Fortress 4Cast Out {3}{W}
10Island 1Censor {1}{U}
9Plains 3Essence Scatter {1}{U}
2Hieroglyphic Illumination {3}{U}
1Ixalan's Binding {3}{W}
2Negate {1}{U}
3Opt {U}
2Search for Azcanta {1}{U}
4Settle the Wreckage {2}{W}{W}
3Supreme Will {2}{U}
2Treasure Map {2}
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Magma Spray, Hour of Devastation and Nicol Bolas. You were asking why Grixis over straight up UB control right? The first two improve the RDW and swarm matchups immensely, while the second improves control matchups and raises the deck swag by 200%. Why is not more popular you ask? The mana base to run 3 colors is hard to pool at best of times, and Grixis sacrifices a lot of consistency for raw power.

Deck: Grixis Control {u}{b}{r}
4Dragonskull Summit 3Abrade {1}{R}4The Scarab God {3}{U}{B}1Mountain
4Drowned Catacomb 1Cancel {1}{U}{U}
2Evolving Wilds 2Censor {1}{U}
1Field of Ruin 3Essence Scatter {1}{U}
1Ifnir Deadlands 1Hour of Devastation {3}{R}{R}
3Ipnu Rivulet 2Magma Spray {R}
5Island 3Moment of Craving {1}{B}
4Mountain 2Nicol Bolas, God-Pharaoh {4}{U}{B}{R}
4Swamp 2Search for Azcanta {1}{U}
2Supreme Will {2}{U}
2Sweltering Suns {1}{R}{R}
2Treasure Map {2}
3Vraska's Contempt {2}{B}{B}
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Izzet Tempo gained a bit of popularity since in the last two weeks. The combination of blue and red provides a ton of control and fire power, allowing it to gain an upper hand over the aggressive and midrange matchups, but it has a hard time dealing with large, resilient threats and control.

Deck: Izzet Tempo {u}{r}
1Arch of Orazca 3Abrade {1}{R}2Cryptic Serpent {5}{U}{U}
1Evolving Wilds 3Censor {1}{U}4Enigma Drake {1}{U}{R}
1Field of Ruin 3Essence Scatter {1}{U}3Glorybringer {3}{R}{R}
2Highland Lake 3Magma Spray {R}4Rekindling Phoenix {2}{R}{R}
9Island 3Opt {U}
10Mountain 1Search for Azcanta {1}{U}
2Supreme Will {2}{U}
2Sweltering Suns {1}{R}{R}
2Treasure Map {2}
1Unsummon {U}
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Popularized by Noxious, this hyper-aggressive deck using auras and evasive creatures has made enough appearances on the ladder to make the list and knockout God Pharaoh's Gift. One of the rare new archetypes on the snapshot is as efficient as it is risky to play.

Deck: UW Auras {w}{u}
1Desert of the Mindful 4Cartouche of Knowledge {1}{U}2Adanto Vanguard {1}{W}
1Desert of the True 3Cartouche of Solidarity {W}3Adorned Pouncer {1}{W}
4Glacial Fortress 1Curious Obsession {U}4Mist-Cloaked Herald {U}
7Island 2Dive Down {U}2Oketra's Avenger {1}{W}
5Plains 2Negate {1}{U}3Sacred Cat {W}
2Shefet Dunes 4One With the Wind {1}{U}2Skymarcher Aspirant {W}
2Squire's Devotion {2}{W}3Slither Blade {U}
1Trial of Solidarity {2}{W}2Warkite Marauder {1}{U}
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This covers the 12 most popular decks right now. The list is bound to change up a bit in the coming weeks as the collections grow and people get to experiment with new and refined decks. If you wish to find out more, join the discussion on our Discord server.


Title Category Published Patch
Meta Snapshot: Core Set 2019 Meta Snapshot II August 05, 2018 v786_640159
Meta Snapshot: Core Set 2019 Meta Snapshot July 22, 2018 v786_640159
Preliminary Meta Snapshot: Core Set 19 Preliminary Snapshot July 12, 2018 v786_640159
Meta Snapshot: Kaladesh Snapshot II July 01, 2018 v744_635428
Meta Snapshot: Kaladesh Snapshot I June 17, 2018 v727_633495
Preliminary Snapshot: Kaladesh Preliminary Snapshot June 07, 2018 v727_633495
Snapshot - Dominaria III Snapshot III June 03, 2018 v667_618725
Snapshot - Dominaria II Snapshot II May 20, 2018 v667_618725
Snapshot - Dominaria I Snapshot I May 06, 2018 v667_618725
Preliminary Snapshot - Dominaria Preliminary Snapshot April 26, 2018 v667_618725
Meta-Snapshot II Snapshot II April 16, 2018 v607_607936
Preliminary Meta-Snapshot Preliminary/Snapshot April 01, 2018 v607_604597


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