Ghalta vs Modern

Do you like giant monster that are capable of destroying entire cites? Then you, like me, are probably a fan of Kaiju Eiga. There is just so satisfying about watching a prehistoric gargantuan crushing all before it under its giant scaly claws. So, you can imagine my joy when Rivals of Ixalan give us not one, not two, but six colossal Kaiju in the from of the Elder Dinosaurs. Heavily inspired by Toho characters like Rodan, Anguirus and King Ghidorah, many players have tried to find homes for these Elder Dinosaurs in both Standard and Commander. But I had another plan in mind for one of these creatures, the one inspired by the king of the monsters, Godzilla himself. So today it’s time to stomp over Modern with Ghalta, Primal Hunger.

For those of you whom are not in the know, Ghalta, Primal Hunger is a 12/12 Legendary Elder Dinosaur with Trample for twelve mana. On the face of it this giant green meanie doesn’t seem all that impressive, until you consider the fact that Ghalta becomes cheaper for each point of power you have on your side of the board. Now as we all know, cost reduction effects in Magic are completely fine and NEVER result in any issues what so ever…

Ok, so they can break formats, but so far Ghalta seems to be safe, as no-one has broken the game. Yet. Now I was very keen to find a home for this particular terrible lizard, and one such idea has seemed to bare fruit. The great thing is that we haven’t had to break any new ground here, the strategy that we want to put Ghalta into has been doing the rounds for a few years now.

Mono Green Stompy is an aggro deck that takes advantage of Greens access to larger than average creatures and pump spells to force threw damage over it’s opponents blockers. With creatures like Leatherback Baloth and Kalonian Tusker having high power to mana cost ratios, it is very plausible to have ten power on the board as early as turn three. Now I don’t know about you but been able to throw down a turn four Ghalta is certainly pleasing to the ‘Timmy’ in me and can be very hard for the opponent to deal with.

The deck runs full playsets of Dryad Militant and Experiment One in the one drop slot. Dryad Militant is a Savannah Lions with the added upside of been able to hate on decks like storm, while Experiment One is an early game threat that can quickly get out of control thanks to its Evolve ability. We also make use of +1/+1 counter synergies with full playsets of Strangleroot Geist and Avatar of the Resolute. The Geist can provide some early game aggression or even trade up to a 3/2 with a well-timed block. the Avatar is a on its own already has some great stats, but if we have even one +1/+1 counter on a creature it can become a really dangerous threat.

Two Kalonian Tusker and four Leatherback Baloth provide some great vanilla power to our board, and two copies of Dungrove Elder can get really big really fast thanks to our mana base. The last creature in the deck is three copies of Ghalta, Primal Hunger themselves. I believe three is the right number for the deck. In testing four seemed to flood my hand with 12/12’s I couldn’t cast, and two didn’t give me a fair chance to draw one over the course of a game.

The deck runs eleven non-creature spells. Three copies of Vines of Vastwood proved protection to our creatures for a single green, and a valuable pump effect if we can kick it. Four Rancor can make any of our creatures a viable threat for only a single mana, and since most of our creatures have multiple green mana symbols in their casting cost we would be remised not to include a playset of Aspect of Hydra. The mana base for the deck is very simple. Twenty Forests and two copies of Treetop Village give you everything you need you should need.

For the sideboard we have gone for an approach that can handle most matchups. Scavenging Ooze and Relic of Progenitus allow us to battle graveyard decks like Dredge. Gleeful Sabotage can help handle Affinity and Lantern Control, while Guttural Response and Choke handle Blue decks. A single Spellskite can help protect against spot removal, while Dismember gives us access to our own removal package. Finally, a couple of Feed the Clan can force a Burn or other aggro player into the long game, which should favour us.

Creatures (27)
4 Dryad Militant
4 Experiment One
4 Strangleroot Geist
4 Avatar of the Resolute
2 Kalonian Tusker
4 Leatherback Baloth
2 Dungrove Elder
3 Ghalta, Primal Hunger
Non-Creature Spells (11)
4 Rancor
3 Vines of Vastwood
4 Aspect of Hydra
Lands (22)
20 Forest
2 Treetop Village
Sideboard (15)
1 Spellskite
2 Choke
2 Feed the Clan
2 Gleeful Sabotage
2 Dismember
2 Guttural Response
2 Scavenging Ooze
2 Relic of Progenitus

And there you have it, Ghalta Stompy in Modern. The deck is surprising strong and I have been having a lot of fun with it. I might even have a go at filming a few competitive matches with it for the channel, so keep your eye peeled for that. But what do you think? Do you want to try the deck out for yourself? Maybe you have already had some success with these new Elder Dinosaurs yourself. If that is the case let us know about it in the comments below, and don’t forget to like a subscribe to keep up to date on all the goings on here at Master of Magics. But until next time remember, Good Luck and Have Fun.

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