Historic Deck Tech: Deathtouch Tribal

Well, it’s finally here. Kaldheim is out on Magic Arena and already everyone is busy brewing away and testing decks out for the new seasons meta. With a whole bunch of new cards to either slot into existing decks, or build around to create new and exciting brews, it’s always going to be an interesting time for the game we all love. For me, there are more than a few great or interesting cards that I was keen to get my hands on and test out in the meta, including one particular Legendary Creature that has brought back one of the most infamous alternative win conditions in Magic long history. That’s right, today we look at poisoning our opponents to death with Fynn, the Fangbearer and Deathtouch Tribal.

Now, cards on the table. Initially, this was going to be a Standard deck tech as that is always the more influenced format from a new set release. However, as I was building the deck, it became clear that while I could create a viable deck around this particular strategy, it wasn’t as well rounded as I would have hoped. The simple fact is that the Standard card pool was just not quite big enough to make a completely solid deck. But if we move in the Historic format, we have a lot better options for the deck. If you are wanting to try out this strategy in Standard (which is still rather fun) then check out Total MTG’s budget deck tech on the subject and tell him I said hi. But for now, let’s take a look at the Historic version of the deck.

One of the reasons I was very excited to try this strategy out was the new mono green legendary, Fynn, the Fangbearer. This two mana Human Warrior turn any creature with Deathtouch into a deadly package, as if they make contact with your opponent then they give them two poison counters in addition to any damage done. For those that can’t remember, poison is an alternative win condition that cause a player to instantly lose the game if they accumulate 10 or more poison counters.

The idea of giving any Deathtouch creature effectively poison 2 is absolutely gross, as it makes smaller threats like Vampire of the Dire Moon (that most players would just let through without blocking in order to keep their more precious creature on the board) immediate threats that have to be dealt with. Additionally, if you are able to swing in with five or more unblocked Deathtouch creatures while Fynn, the Fangbearer is on the board, it’s an instant win. Now tell me that doesn’t sound like fun.

Ok, so we have a basic strategy, now we need to build a deck around it. A playset of Fynn, the Fangbearer is obviously a good place to start, as we want to make sure we have him on hand as much as possible. Next up, we want a lot of cheap but effective Deathtouch creatures to take advantage of his special ability. A playset of above-mentioned Vampire of the Dire Moon, as well as Narnam Renegade and Foulmire Knight is a great place to start. Next up we move on to our two drops, with four copies of Gifted Aetherborn, as well as a couple of copies of Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons (who is just a perfect fit with any Deathtouch heavy deck).

As we move onto our three drops, we would be remised if we didn’t throw in a playset of Nighthawk Scavenger (who can really get out of control if our opponent ends up filling their graveyard too quick) as well as four copies of Hooded Blightfang. Along with all the other life link we have thanks to Vampire of the Dire Moon, Gifted Aetherborn and Nighthawk Scavenger, the Blightfang ends up giving us a ton additional health while possible draining our opponent to death, which is rather handy for aggressive match ups. We are also going to run two copies of Ochran Assassin, which allows us to go for an alpha swing and finish up the game in a single attack step once we have all the pieces in place.

Questing Beast is also a great card for the deck, as it gets around fog effects that can really hamper our strategy if we happen to come across them. It’s also a super powerful card in its own right and can happily win us the game on its own, which is nice. Finally, we run two non-creature cards with a couple of Assassin’s Trophy in case we come across any problems we can’t simple bite to death.

For our twenty-two card mana base we want to make sure we have untapped mana at every point in the game. To that end we run playsets of Blooming Marsh, Darkbore Pathway // Slitherbore Pathway and Overgrown Tomb, as well as four Swamps and Forests and a pair of Fabled Passages to help trigger Narnam Renegade.

Creatures (36)
Narnam Renegade
Foulmire Knight
Vampire of the Dire Moon
Fynn, the Fangbearer
Gifted Aetherborn
Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons
Nighthawk Scavenger
Hooded Blightfang
Ochran Assassin
Questing Beast

Spells (2)
Assassin's Trophy
Lands (22)
Blooming Marsh
Darkbore Pathway // Slitherbore Pathway
Overgrown Tomb
Fabled Passage

Sideboard (15)
Blossoming Defense
Heroic Intervention
Assassin's Trophy
Leyline of the Void

For a sideboard, we have two additional Assassin’s Trophy for removal, as well as a playset of Thoughtseize we can bring in to disrupt control decks. To protect our board, we run a playset of Blossoming Defense for targeted removal, as well as a couple of Heroic Intervention to protect against sweepers. Finally, to disrupt those pesky graveyard deck, three copies of Leyline of the Void (just make sure to take out your Nighthawk Scavenger when you bring them in).

And that is Deathtouch Tribal for Historic. It’s a lot of fun to play and is surprising effective in testing. But what do you think about today’s deck? Is this what you want to play in Historic, or have you a different brew you want to try out? Please let me know in the comments below, and while you’re there you could like and subscribe to keep up to date with all we do here at Master of Magics.

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