All out of Rare Wildcards? How to Approach War of the Spark Standard for Free-to-Play

Connor Bryant
April 25, 2019
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Do you know one thing I hear from Arena players from all over the globe lament: "I'm out of Rare Wild Cards!!" It happens to the best of us, especially the avid brewer. So what to do when you're all out of rare wild cards and can't shell out coin for more boosters? The answer is to get crafty. 

War of the Spark is an incredibly powerful set that'll impact Standard and has plenty of commons or uncommons you can add into your current decks to give them a boost! Let's go over 3 different existing popular decks and see if we can find any new adds for them! We'll be discussing updates for Mono Red, Mono White and Mono Blue today! 

Mono Red

 

Here is the flaming scourge of the Arena ladders in the dying embers of Ravnica Allegiance Standard. This deck sets the pace of the format in best of 1 and has powerful sideboard tools in best of 3. Mono Red is definitely the fun police in the format but somebody has to do it! And if my reward for being the fun police is a quick climb to mythic, I'll take it!  It seems like many players on Arena have come to the same conclusion. War of the Spark gave a few different tools to support a few of the current ways to build Red decks.

Burning Prophet is a powerful 2 drop from the new set that I think could power up the Electrostatic Field and Runaway Steam-Kin Mono Red combo builds. It is even a wizard for Wizard's Lightning. Prophet is especially strong with cantrips like Crash Through and Warlord's Fury. Turning those meh cards into Opt with upside while growing the prophet is really nice.This could make chaining even more draw spells together with Steam-Kin a possibility. The card is also good with Experimental Frenzy and can help you clear extra lands from the top of your library. I could also see the card being played in a Feather centric Boros "Heroic" style deck. Having more creatures benefit from casting spells makes you less reliant on buffing a specific guy, and it is especially nice with Defiant Strike. I think this card is awesome and can slot into a bunch of different decks. Good use of an uncommon wild card! 

Grim Initiate is a bit more straight forward. This guy looks a lot like the red Hunted Witness but is better on the front side. You lose lifelink on the token but First Strike is preferred in a red deck. Initiate seems like a great add for Red based creature decks looking for additional good one drops to play. I love Initiate in Judith, the Scourge Diva decks and think he'll pop up all over the format.  

Mono White

Mono White played the opposite side of the fun police during Ravnica Allegiance. It is a deck that will wax and wane in popularity depending on how many sweepers folks are playing. This deck alone made Cry of the Carnarium necessary in Esper Control. White aggro is also a great grinding deck because the games are fast and pretty straightforward.

Law-Rune Enforcer 

Law-Rune Enforcer will be a good addition to the deck. Enforcer doesn't have the most impressive body but the 2 toughness is big in mirrors and against all of the various 1/1 tokens. All of the anti-aggro blockers in the format are 2 drops like Augur of Bolas or Wildgrowth Walker, which Enforcer can minimize at the low cost of 1 mana. If you can stick a counter on him or a Benalish Marshal on the field, he battles well as a 2/3. My favorite thing about him is his ability to tap their creatures on your opponent's end step and then tap something else on your turn, basically removing 2 creatures during a key combat. He is also incredible with Unbreakable Formation or vigilance from Gideon Blackblade as you can attack with him and then before blockers, tap down one of their blockers. Mono-white always wants more one drops and Enforcer is a good one. 

Grateful Apparation 

This one won't go in traditional Mono White but I could see being interested in a version with Gird for Battle , Unbreakable Formation and Venerated Loxodon that would really utilize this card. Apparation may look familiar, as its a white Thrummingbird. You could even utilize synergy with Gideon Blackblade or Ajani, Adversary of Tyrants or Ajani's Pridemate. Lots of cool potential with this card, and that's not even approaching it's applications in dedicated Proliferate midrange decks. 

Mono Blue

  

Mono Blue ended up taking down Mythic Championship 1 in the hands of Autumn Burchett. Unfortunately, Mono Blue didn't get much help from the new set. It picked up a new roleplayer removal spell in Kasmina's Transformation. This will let Mono Blue pack better answers for Lyra Dawnbringer or Niv-Mizzet Parun, two cards that are usually impossible to beat. Kasmina, Enigmatic Mentor could be a nice sideboard roleplayer against decks with sweepers and lots of removal. Her shield adding on two mana makes a potential Dive Down even more disastrous. 

Wrap Up

Here are some other notable uncommons or commons for exisiting decks I wanted to mention as powerful additions in different decks. 

Neoform in Prime Speaker Vannifar decks

Emergence Zone in Simic Nexus

Saheeli, Sublime Artificer in Izzet Drakes

Augur of Bolas in Izzet Drakes and Esper Control 

   

Pollenbright Druid and Evolution Sage in Simic based counters decks

Return to Nature in Golgari/Sultai Sideboards

Spark Harvest in Judith decks

Merfolk Skydiver in Merfolk

Tyrant's Scorn in Esper Control, Dimir and Sultai

 

Let us know in the comments which new War of the Spark cards excite you the most and what you've been climbing the ladder with!  

 

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