Madcap Ponza by joy1 on MtGO

Creatures (14)
4 Arbor Elf
2 Birds of Paradise
2 Inferno Titan
2 Platinum Emperion
2 Stormbreath Dragon
1 Thragtusk
1 Thrun, the Last Troll

Non-Creature Spells (25)
2 Chandra, Torch of Defiance
3 Bonfire of the Damned
3 Madcap Experiment
4 Mwonvuli Acid-Moss
4 Stone Rain
1 Beast Within
4 Blood Moon
4 Utopia Sprawl

Lands (21)
8 Forest
1 Kessig Wolf Run
1 Mountain
3 Stomping Ground
4 Windswept Heath
4 Wooded Foothills

Sideboard (15)
2 Thrun, the Last Troll
3 Ancient Grudge
3 Anger of the Gods
1 Choke
2 Grafdigger’s Cage
2 Kitchen Finks
2 Shatterstorm


R/G Ponza has been a deck on the rise in Modern over the last several months, especially on MtGO. Its ability to stifle opponents in a very new way makes it an appealing option for many. The deck we’re featuring today takes the traditional Ponza decklist and adds a very powerful combo to it.

Primarily, this deck is looking to gain a significant mana advantage over its opponent, both through ramp and land destruction. For ramp, this deck only plays 1 mana “ramp” spells, as it fits better into this deck’s curve. Birds of Paradise and Arbor Elf are the 1 mana creatures that ramp mana. The latter of which is better in this deck than most thanks to Utopia Sprawl being a very important card to this deck’s strategy. Stone Rain is the easiest (and least color intensive) land destruction spell available, while Mwonvuli Acid-Moss is a little more expensive but has both land destruction and ramp attached to it, singlehandedly swinging the game in this deck’s favor.

Once this deck has asserted its mana dominance over the opponent, there are several ways for it to take advantage of it. Inferno Titan and Stormbreath Dragon end the game very quickly, while Thragtusk can help this deck get back into the game and Thrun, the Last Troll is a nearly impossible to answer threat. Chandra, Torch of Defiance is an excellent way for this deck to draw cards and gain extra mana while killing opposition creatures. Lastly, Bonfire of the Damned plays a critical role in this deck, wiping the opponent’s board once this deck has its mana in place.

Blood Moon is perhaps the centerpiece of this deck. The 3 mana enchantment has proven itself as a powerful Modern staple as of late, and just like most Moon decks, this one functions significantly better when it is in play, potentially locking opponents out of the game without much effort. Some Moon decks have been turning to powerful combos to win the game quickly, and this version is doing exactly that by using the combo of Madcap Experiment and Platinum Emperion. This combo can singlehandedly beat a lot of the format once resolved, and it offers this deck a new dynamic angle of attack that it didn’t previously have.

Here are the changes I would make going forward:


-1 Thrun, the Last Troll

+1 Scavenging Ooze


-1 Shatterstorm

+1 Choke

This is day 358 of’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 357 here, where we featured a Modern Humans deck that forgoes all but white in order to stay lean and mean.

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