Green in explorer
Mono Green Explorer
Today my article is about Explorer.
After Qualifier Weekend I got myself to test more decks, especially since I felt like I hadn’t seen what the format could do best, so I started testing a lot of new strategies and discovering interactions. I liked several aggressive decks and one of the those caught my attention the most, even getting a recommendation of a friend (thanks, Carlos!), it was Mono Green!
Mono Green Stompy is not new, the deck already had a beautiful phase in Standard, and in Pioneer, it has already punished a lot of people who didn’t expect a 5/4 turn 2. The deck is straightforward and develop its game very well, being popular to this day in the leagues in the hands of those who want to quickly accumulate resources. In Explorer I had my doubts because we don’t have Elvish Mystic and Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx, or even wonderful options like Gather Courage and Aspect of Hydra.
However, it seems there is a universe without these cards and which the deck is a great option for Explorer:
The maindeck is simple, as any deck like this should be. Primal Might has been nicknamed the “green fireball” and it’s an accurate comparison, because it doesn’t need 2 targets to make and can help you hit lethal multiple times. Resilient Khenra was played in the Standard era of the deck and I must confess that I didn’t expect much from the card, but it delivers well to our proposal of always push damage, and it makes the race difficult for the opponent, since killing it means a bigger attack in return.
A very important point about this list is the number of creatures, we used 29, which means that we are close to the ideal number, which is 26. I take this into account when making side plans because I don’t want to make my best card worse: Collected Company. With one exception, which I’ll talk about later. I always leave my creature count at a minimum of 26 and any changes you make, think about that too. It’s bad enough doing Collected Company for elves, even worse for nothing. Don’t make your Collected worse.
The sideboard is what I wanted to talk about the most. If I consider the maindeck stock, the sideboard is where there’s controversy. As I said, I change the number of creatures a little, to have a good Collected Company, and against aggros this card is too strong to let it get worse, so normally against aggros I just put the 3 copies of Ram Through, since it opens a path and still works as a kill condition. Can The Great Henge be any good? Yup. But I focus on having more creatures and winning the race, rather than necessarily trying a grind game.
Against Mono Red, which is a deck that can try to control me, my side is:
-2 Pelt Collector, – 1 Rhonas the Indomitable
+ 3 Ram Through
You can take another Pelt, which doesn’t grow well in this game, and add The Great Henge, but those 3 make me happy.
Against control, for example, I can have more cards in because my removals are worse, so I can, versus Azorius Control, do something like this:
– 4 Primal Might
+ 2 Questing Beast +2 Shifting Ceratops
I don’t go up Shapers’ Sanctuary because nowadays Azorius solves this card well and doesn’t always have the window to make Snakeskin Veil, although post side a lot of Azorius Control uses more wrath effects, like Farewell and Settle the Wreckage.
Against Greasefang, whether Mardu or Esper, I focus on having quick removals and graveyard hate:
– 4 Primal Might – 1 Resilient Khenra
+ 3 Ram Through +2 Unlicensed Hearse
Finally, let’s talk about the exception about the number of creatures, where you need more quality and less quantity, the match is against Rakdos Midrange. Rakdos Midrange is the type of deck that can punish us a lot for having access to multiple removals, so a lot of my plan is to resist, with cards that help trade resources, for example using removals, even because, I have Fight-based removals, which is awful versus removals.
+3 Shapers’ Sanctuary, +1 The Great Henge, +1 Snakeskin Veil, +1 Vivien, Monsters’ Advocate
– 4 Primal Might, -2 Llanowar Elves
I think the deck is an interesting path to explore the format and I highly recommend giving the deck a chance, which when in doubt, helps you make good fights.
Until the next article!