Mono-Blue Artifact Storm by Tulio_Jaudy on MtGO

Creatures (8)
4 Glint-Nest Crane
4 Ornithopter

Non-Creature Spells (34)
2 Baral’s Expertise
4 Reverse Engineer
2 Engulf the Shore
4 Paradoxical Outcome
2 Whir of Invention
2 Aetherflux Reservoir
4 Bone Saw
2 Implement of Improvement
4 Inspiring Statuary
4 Prophetic Prism
4 Renegade Map

Lands (18)
18 Island

Sideboard (15)
2 Baral’s Expertise
2 Engulf the Shore
2 Commit // Memory
2 Dispel
2 Metallic Rebuke
3 Negate
2 Vexing Scuttler

Summary

Combo decks are very rare in Standard, but the last few rotations have seen a couple combo decks that needed the axe from Wizards. The deck we’re featuring today, however, has always been on the fringes of the format, and it may very well be the most viable combo deck left in Standard.

The deck wins through Aetherflux Reservoir gaining enough life and then using its activated ability. Simply gaining a few life each turn is rarely enough to get the job done, which is why this deck plays a multitude of cheap artifacts, and “storms off” with Paradoxical Outcome. Not only with Paradoxical Outcome return all the cheap artifacts in play, but it will draw an impressive number of cards, allowing you to find more gas or an Aetherflux Reservoir if you’re missing one.

To help draw cards and find the important artifacts needed to combo off, this deck plays several impactful cards. Glint-Nest Crane is a good early game play that replaces itself with Aetherflux Reservoir or a cheap artifact that you’ll need later. It also blocks some of the format’s early aggressive creatures, making it a valuable creature early and an effective life gain effect late. Reverse Engineer helps accumulate the critical mass of cheap artifacts while filtering though your deck.

Whir of Invention frequently finds Aetherflux Reservoir if it’s missing, but can also find cheap artifacts. Whir’s flexibility makes it a good draw at almost every point in the game. As an additional pseudo-Paradoxical Outcome, Baral’s Expertise isn’t a bad option. It bounces three cheap artifacts most of the time it’s cast, but it’s also a powerful defensive option if needed. Inspiring Statuary, while not necessary for the combo, allows the deck to go a lot faster, and is a powerful tool to race against aggressive decks if needed.

In the sideboard, the deck is primarily concerned about opposing counter magic. Metallic Rebuke, Dispel, and Negate all help the deck protect its combo against slow control decks. Similarly, Vexing Scuttler allows the deck to play the grindy game if needed, returning a previously used spell and putting a beefy body in play. Additional copies of Baral’s Expertise and Engulf the Shore allow the deck to play the control-combo game against aggressive decks like Zombies and Vehicles.

Here are the changes I would make going forward:

Mainboard

-1 Inspiring Statuary

+1 Baral’s Expertise

Sideboard

-2 Baral’s Expertise

+2 Aether Meltdown

This is day 173 of Spellsnare.com’s 2017 Deck of the Day column, where each day we’ll feature a different Standard, Modern, or Legacy deck that caught our eye. You can read day 172 here, where we featured a Legacy deck that takes the top dog of Modern and does its best to port it.

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