Black Red Blightning in Zendikar Standard


Hi all, happy Friday! I hope your weekend will be productive, both in Mtg tournaments and other stuff. For this post, I’ll take an analysis on the Black Red Blightning deck which was one of the top decks in pre-Zendikar Standard. The deck suffered a lot on this rotation with the loss of its important components. We said goodbye to Demigod of Revenge, Figure of Destiny, Boggart Ram-Gang, Flame Javelin and to the black red lands Auntie’s Hovel and Graven Cairns. The question now is: Is the deck still competitive enough in the new Standard? We’ll soon find out as Zendikar becomes legal on tournaments this weekend.

First, let’s take a look at my build of the Black Red Blightning deck before the rotation.

4 Boggart Ram-gang
4 Demigod of Revenge
4 Figure of Destiny
4 Goblin Outlander

4 Blightning
4 Flame Javelin
4 Lightning Bolt
4 Terminate
4 Volcanic Fallout

4 Auntie’s Hovel
4 Graven Cairns
4 Dragonskull Summit
12 Mountain

4 Anathemancer
3 Chaotic Backlash
3 Doomblade
3 Infest
2 Pithing Needle

The deck lost almost all of its creatures and a third of its mana fixers. Let us see what Zendikar cards we can use for the new build of the Black Red deck.

The Zendikar Red cards:

Burst Lightning – A Shock that gets better late game, this can replace Flame Javelin’s slot although its not as good.

Chandra Ablaze – She gets a slot maybe in the sideboard.

Elemental Appeal – This pseudo-Blistering Firecat deals huge chunks of damage and gets better if kicked but I prefer the cheaper Ball Lightning. Maybe a copy or two of this in the main is enough.

Goblin Bushwhacker – This is more suited on a Goblin deck rather than on the black red unless you’re running more creatures than burn spells.

Goblin Guide – Cheap cost with haste is good but giving the opponent land draws makes me reconsider this Goblin.

Goblin Ruinblaster – The new version of Avalanche Riders and is much better in my opinion. The bad thing is Anathemancer already took its place in dealing with non-basic lands.

Lavaball Trap – Effective against fetchlands and Harrow but the five mana you use for its trap condition should be spent on your big spells rather than wait.

Obsidian Fireheart – This has a good chance of a playset main deck. The drawbacks though is that its not haste and dies to a lot of spot removals today.

Unstable Footing – A good sideboard card but it just missed out Burrenton Forge-tender. Wizards would have added “and can’t gain life this turn.” to this.

On to the Zendikar black cards,

Disfigure – Black’s version of Shock, this can be sideboard for pro-Red guys like BFT but Standard doesn’t have one at the moment. Hooray!

Needlebite Trap – A good sideboard for decks with life gain. This will get a slot in my sideboard.

Sorin Markov – A copy or two of him on the sideboard against insane life gain scenarios.

Ravenous Trap – To deal with random graveyard shenanigans. I’m predicting reanimator with Iona decks.

The other cards worth mention,

Teetering Peaks – Additional pump and damage for your early beaters.

Piranha Marsh – If you’re running a pauper version or budget version of the deck.

With a quick look at the other previous sets and some random fixing and curving, here is my initial and untested list:

4 [ZEN] Akoum Refuge
4 [ZEN] Arid Mesa
4 [ALA] Crumbling Necropolis
10 [ZEN] Mountain
4 [M10] Dragonskull Summit

4 [ARB] Anathemancer
4 [M10] Ball Lightning
4 [M10] Siege-Gang Commander
4 [CFX] Shambling Remains
4 [CFX] Hellspark Elemental

4 [ALA] Blightning
4 [ZEN] Burst Lightning
4 [ARB] Terminate
4 [M10] Lightning Bolt

As I have observed on the pre-Zendikar Standard testing tournaments at Magic-League, the dominating decks are Jund cascade and Three-color control decks. This made me consider to have the Anathemancers in the main deck. Twelve black red gold cards also means twelve mana fixers. The Arid Mesa is optional but is preferred.

My sideboard would look like this:

3 Deathmark to deal with Putrid Leeches and Baneslayer Angels,
4 Thought Hemorrhage for control and combo decks,
3 Fleshbag Marauder specifically for Wall of Denial as this card is big problem of the deck,
2 Needlebite Trap maybe for control and life gain decks, and
3 Volcanic Fallout for token decks and random weenie horde.

This wraps up my take on the Black Red Blightning Burn deck in Zendikar Standard. You might want to test this in your local tourney so feel free to do so. Until next post and you may have a fun-filled Mtg weekend. 😀

Categories : Magic The Gathering