Sunday, 1 February 2015

43 Lands

Hrmm, 5 lands in my opening hand.. I keep. Why? Because I’m playing 43 Lands, that’s why! Yes, you read that correctly – a deck named after its (very high) land count. One of the game’s defining features has always been its mana system. Lands are easily the most common source of mana, and finding the right balance can mean the difference between too many and not enough. One of the best things about 43 Lands is that you don’t really have to worry about that. Allow me to explain..

The irony about 43 Lands is that among its most important cards are the spells. Exploration and Manabond are both non-land cards that help create tempo and that you want to play on turn 1. Exploration is very self-explanatory, but I want to talk about Manabond a bit because I know it is seen as less important in Legacy. The reason I play 4 Manabond is because of its synergy with Nantuko Monastery – a card that isn’t really seen in Legacy Lands decks. Putting other Manabonds/Explorations in the graveyard is therefore a good thing, which is why I kept 4 in the deck.

Mulch is another one of the deck’s all-star spells that isn’t really used in Legacy. The reason for this is Life from the Loam, which is great at creating card advantage but is weak to graveyard hate. Mulch simply draws four cards from your library and lets you keep all of the non-lands. In a 43 Lands deck, this usually means draw 3 or 4 cards for 1G. Mulch is amazing, and I wish there were more. The best alternative for Mulch #5 that I found was Clear the Land. This card can bite you in the ass, but I thought as a 1-of it could go in. For 2G, Clear the Land has both players reveal the top five cards of their library and put all lands into play tapped. The rest are exiled (which is very important vs graveyard-based shenanigan decks). The main thing about this card is that it’s a Sorcery, so it CAN boost the tempo of your opponent. You’re almost assuredly going to win in the card advantage department, but be sure to play around opposing Brainstorms.

Ok, now on to the deck’s namesake – the lands!  The deck is all about creating a sort of landlock on the opponent and then winning with manlands. I put in 12 win conditions, but you might want to take some out for other cards. Crop Rotation becomes your new best friend, as it allows you to tutor for whatever utility land you require (including win cons). Crop also works very nicely with Riftstone Portal, as it gives lands such as Tabernacle and Maze of Ith some mana generation when you need it. Petrified Field is another underrated card, as it works very nicely with 1-ofs and Wastelands/Rishadan Ports.

This deck is VERY customizable. Normally, I prefer leaving the options open for you guys to explore, but I went through so many iterations/ideas while brewing that I want to mention a couple. Originally the deck had 1 Pendelhaven and 1 Kjeldoran Outpost. Outpost can be a really good card, but Tabernacle is so strong and can really help you lock an opponent out in combination with Wastelands and Rishadan Ports. If you want a budget deck.. don’t play Lands. BUT, if you want to play Lands anyway and don’t own a Tabernacle then Outpost is a great win con for the deck. Without the Outpost I removed the Pendelhaven and added more Riftstone Portals for Crop targets and to smooth out the mana base. I had also considered Intuition with Gaea’s Blessing, Sphere of Resistance, Deserted Temple and many others. Seriously, the deck has so many options – both spells and lands. Happy brewing!

43 Lands


1 Forest
4 Savannah
4 Mishra’s Factory
4 Wasteland
4 Treetop Village
4 Rishadan Port
4 Nantuko Monastery
1 The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale
4 Maze of Ith
4 Windswept Heath
4 Petrified Field
1 Karakas
3 Riftstone Portal
1 Dust Bowl

Total: 43


4 Exploration
4 Manabond
4 Crop Rotation
4 Mulch
1 Clear the Land

Total: 17


1 Glacial Chasm
4 Tormod’s Crypt
4 Naturalize
3 Powder Keg
2 Ensnaring Bridge
1 Zuran Orb

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