Magic: The Gathering/Vintage Decks & Strategies

The below decks may be moved around between the tiers as new cards, trends, discoveries and interactions make certain strategies more or less competitive than they were previously. Please add to this page but do not modify existing decklists without making note of the changes.


Tier One StrategiesEdit

These are the cream of the crop, these strategies are the ones that are consistently winning tournaments and have no significant weaknesses or matchups that can't be won.

Oath PrimerEdit

This deck wins by playing and activating Oath of Druids, often taking advantage of Forbidden Orchard to ensure that the opponent has at least one creature in play.

Mana Drain VariantEdit

Team White Lotus (TWL) Oath

Article at Star City Games here.

GWS OathEdit

This is the variant that has recently became very popular and has placed high in numerous tournaments. It too runs no Mana Drains in favor of Impulse and a black splash for additional Tutors and Duress. As a result, this variant can be built on a budget without losing any cards when one utilizes the ten proxies that most American tournaments now allow.

List & ExplanationEdit

Oath of Druids

Maindeck:

Artifacts

  • 1 Black Lotus (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Emerald (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Jet (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Pearl (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Ruby (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Sapphire (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 2 Sensei's Divining Top

Enchantments

  • 4 Oath Of Druids

Instants

  • 1 Ancestral Recall (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Brainstorm (*now Restricted in Vintage, like Ponder)
  • 1 Crop Rotation (Now Unrestricted in Vintage)
  • 4 Force Of Will
  • 4 Impulse
  • 4 Mana Leak
  • 1 Vampiric Tutor (Restricted in Vintage)

Legendary Creatures

  • 1 Emrakul, the Aeons Torn
  • 1 Griselbrand

Sorceries

  • 1 Ponder
  • 2 Preordain
  • 1 Demonic Tutor (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 4 Duress
  • 1 Gaea's Blessing
  • 1 Imperial Seal
  • 1 Time Walk (Restricted in Vintage)

Basic Lands

  • 2 Island

Lands

  • 2 City Of Brass
  • 1 Flooded Strand
  • 4 Forbidden Orchard
  • 3 Polluted Delta
  • 1 Strip Mine (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Tropical Island
  • 1 Underground Sea
  • 4 Wasteland

Sideboard:

  • 1 Darksteel Colossus
  • 2 Triskelion
  • 2 Choke
  • 3 Ground Seal
  • 3 Annul
  • 3 Oxidize
  • 1 Tinker (Restricted in Vintage)

Variations of this build, popularized by team GWS, have placed in the top 8 of the GenCon Vintage Championships and several Starcity Power 9 events. This has become the most popular form of Oath of Druids decks. Tinker-Darksteel Colossus can be run maindeck. It does have the advantage of getting around Meddling Mage and Chalice of the Void, however is bad if the opponent controls a Goblin Welder. Razia is starting to take the place of Spirit of the Night as the deck's second large hasted flier. The deck plays as an aggro-control deck disrupting the opponent until it finds Forbidden Orchard and Oath of Druids to win. Other cards commonly played are Mystical Tutor, Misdirection and Chalice of the Void.

Decklist posted by team GWS.

Drainless Tinker VariantEdit

This variant runs no Mana Drains in favor of Impulse and a black splash for additional Tutors and possibly Duress. As a result, this variant can be build on a budget without losing any cards when one utilizes the ten proxies that most tournaments now allow. In addition, it runs Tinker as an additional way to combo out.

List & ExplanationEdit

Search:

  • 4 Brainstorm (*Restricted in Vintage)
  • 4 Impulse
  • 2 Sensei's Divining Top (This was a new addition to the list.)
  • 1 Ancestral Recall
  • 1 Time Walk
  • 1 Imperial Seal
  • 1 Vampiric Tutor
  • 1 Mystical Tutor
  • 1 Personal Tutor
  • 1 Demonic Tutor

Disruption:

  • 4 Duress
  • 4 Mana Leak or Daze
  • 4 Force of Will
  • 1 Misdirection

Combo:

  • 4 Oath of Druids
  • 1 Tinker
  • 1 Akroma, Angel of Wrath
  • 1 Razia (edited)
  • 1 Gaea's Blessing

Mana: (Had been tweaked since then.)

  • 1 Black Lotus
  • 1 Mox Emerald
  • 1 Mox Jet
  • 1 Mox Pearl
  • 1 Mox Ruby
  • 1 Mox Sapphire
  • 1 Strip Mine
  • 1 Island
  • 1 Underground Sea
  • 2 Tropical Island
  • 2 Wasteland
  • 2 Flooded Strand
  • 3 Polluted Delta
  • 4 Forbidden Orchard

Some of the Drainless Oath builds including the first such build (listed above) run Tinker and Darksteel Colossus as an additional way to combo out quickly. This gives the additional advantage of an alternative win condition in situations when Oath of Druids is neutralized by cards such as Meddling Mage, Forbidden Orchard, Goblin Bombardment, or Wasteland targeting Forbidden Orchard. Such variations sometimes run Imperial Seal, Mystical Tutor and Personal Tutor to help grab Tinker, Ancestral Recall, Time Walk, or disruption. Other Drainless Oath builds such as the one above do not run either Tinker or Darksteel Colossus and instead run Razia, Boros Archangel.

Other variations on the deck include running cards such as [b]Muddle in the Mixture, Crop Rotation, Chalice of the Void, Pithing Needle, Regrowth, Library of Alexandria, City of Brass, more Sensei's Divining Top and on occasion running three creatures rather than two[/b] in order to significantly decrease the probability of being slowed down by an active Goblin Welder. Some rarely even run cards such as Yawgmoth's Will, Enlightened Tutor, Engineered Explosives and Balance.

Decklist reprinted with permission from the original author, Centroles, who posted this in May 28, 2005.

Stax PrimerEdit

The Stax deck in Vintage wins through a board-lock created by cards like Trinisphere, Smokestack, Tangle Wire and lots of other cards that restrict the number of spells being played.

The advantage of Stax is that it has a lot of permanents, so it does not care about Tangle Wire or Smokestacks.

The win conditions are Karn, Silver Golem, Sundering Titan or Triskelion who could be reanimated with Goblin Welder, also a quite important part of the deck. Even 2 Goblin Welders could create a Tangle Wire of fading 4 permanently which makes playing impossible for your opponent.

Gifts PrimerEdit

GG Gifts Artifacts

  • 1 Black Lotus (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Engineered Explosives
  • 1 Lotus Petal (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mana Crypt (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mana Vault (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Emerald (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Jet (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Pearl (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Ruby (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Sapphire (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 2 Pithing Needle
  • 1 Sol Ring (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Time Vault

Artifact Creatures

  • 1 Darksteel Colossus

Instants

  • 1 Ancestral Recall (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 4 Brainstorm
  • 4 Force Of Will
  • 2 Gifts Ungiven (Now restricted in Vintage)
  • 4 Mana Drain
  • 1 Mystical Tutor (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 4 Thirst For Knowledge
  • 1 Vampiric Tutor (Restricted in Vintage)

Sorceries

  • 1 Burning Wish (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Demonic Tutor (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Flame Fusillade
  • 1 Imperial Seal
  • 1 Recoup
  • 1 Time Walk (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Tinker (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Yawgmoth's Will (Restricted in Vintage)

Lands

  • 4 Island
  • 3 Flooded Strand
  • 1 Library Of Alexandria (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 2 Polluted Delta
  • 2 Underground Sea
  • 2 Volcanic Island
  • 1 Tolarian Academy (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Snow-covered Island

Meandeck Gifts Artifacts

  • 1 Black Lotus (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Lotus Petal (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mana Crypt (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mana Vault (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Emerald (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Jet (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Pearl (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Ruby (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Mox Sapphire (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Sol Ring (Restricted in Vintage)

Artifact Creatures

  • 1 Darksteel Colossus

Instants

  • 1 Ancestral Recall (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 4 Brainstorm
  • 1 Echoing Truth
  • 1 Fact Or Fiction (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 4 Force Of Will
  • 4 Gifts Ungiven
  • 4 Mana Drain
  • 3 Misdirection
  • 1 Mystical Tutor (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Rebuild

Sorceries

  • 1 Burning Wish (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Demonic Tutor (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 4 Merchant Scroll
  • 1 Recoup
  • 1 Time Walk (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Tinker (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Yawgmoth's Will (Restricted in Vintage)
Lands
  • 4 Island
  • 2 Flooded Strand
  • 3 Polluted Delta
  • 2 Underground Sea
  • 2 Volcanic Island
  • 1 Tolarian Academy (Restricted in Vintage)
  • 1 Snow-covered Island


Note: As of April 24th, there is an errata on Time Vault, causing the Flame Fusillade/ Time Vault/ Infinite Damage combo to no longer work.

Note: As of September, 2008, Time Vault has received additional errata which allows it to combo with Voltaic Key to take infinite turns. This has subsequently made everything written on this wiki more inaccurate than it already was. Go somewhere else to get information on Vintage. (perhaps www.themanadrain.com)

Control Slaver PrimerEdit

A Standard Decklist Lands

  • 1 Library of Alexandria
  • 1 Tolarian Academy
  • 2 Polluted Delta
  • 2 Flooded Strand
  • 4 Volcanic Island
  • 2 Underground Sea
  • 4 Island

Creatures

  • 4 Goblin Welder
  • 1 Triskelion
  • 1 Pentavus

Spells

  • 4 Force of Will
  • 4 Mana Drain
  • 1 Echoing Truth
  • 1 Darkblast
  • 4 Brainstorm
  • 1 Fact or Fiction
  • 1 Ancestral Recall
  • 4 Thirst for Knowledge
  • 2 Mindslaver
  • 1 Rack and Ruin
  • 1 Gifts Ungiven
  • 1 Time Walk
  • 1 Tinker
  • 1 Demonic Tutor
  • 1 Yawgmoth's Will
  • 1 Vampiric Tutor
  • 1 Black Lotus
  • 1 Mana Crypt
  • 1 Mana Vault
  • 1 Sol Ring
  • 1 Mox Emerald
  • 1 Mox Jet
  • 1 Mox Pearl
  • 1 Mox Ruby
  • 1 Mox Sapphire

The First Primer by Rich Shay aka The Atog Lord

An article on Burning Slaver, a Control Slaver variant, by Brian Demars

Belcher PrimerEdit

The Mountains Win Again PrimerEdit

Everything Wins Again PrimerEdit

Everything Wins Again is a metagame hate deck designed to have a 50/50 matchup against any deck in the metagame preboard, and a 51/49 matchup postboard.

This is done by completely sacrificing manabase immunity to Wasteland for the support of all five colors. Sometimes this element is forgone in favor of a four color manabase depending on the metagame.

The first and only top 8 of this deck was recorded here.

6. Andrew Fox "Everything Wins Again"

Maindeck (60 cards):

  • 1 Mox Emerald
  • 1 Mox Jet
  • 1 Mox Pearl
  • 1 Mox Ruby
  • 1 Mox Sapphire
  • 4 Dark Confidant
  • 1 Demonic Consultation
  • 1 Duress
  • 1 Ancestral Recall
  • 2 Brainstorm
  • 1 Curiosity
  • 1 Daze
  • 1 Disrupt
  • 1 Memory Lapse
  • 1 Ninja of the Deep Hours
  • 1 Seal of Removal
  • 1 Spell Snare
  • 1 Time Walk
  • 2 Fire/Ice
  • 3 Hide/Seek
  • 3 Meddling Mage
  • 1 Call of the Herd
  • 1 Sylvan Safekeeper
  • 1 Gorilla Shaman
  • 1 Pyroblast
  • 4 Swords to Plowshares
  • 1 Children of Korlis
  • 3 Jotun Grunt

Lands (18):

  • 2 Bloodstained Mire
  • 4 City of Brass
  • 2 Flooded Strand
  • 2 Mishra's Factory
  • 1 Island
  • 1 Plains
  • 1 Plateau
  • 1 Scrubland
  • 1 Swamp
  • 1 Taiga
  • 1 Underground Sea
  • 1 Volcanic Island

Sideboard: (15 cards)

  • 1 Artifact Mutation
  • 1 Darkblast
  • 1 Flametongue Kavu
  • 1 Gifts Ungiven
  • 1 Hide and Seek
  • 1 Meddling Mage
  • 1 Pyrokinesis
  • 3 Pyrostatic Pillar
  • 4 Serenity
  • 1 Spell Snare

Everything Wins Again builds up incremental card advantage over the course of the game by confusing the opponent and causing them to misplay. This is done by playing almost no repeating cards in a given game so that the opponent cannot correctly find the 'optimal' play in any given situation.

Tier Two StrategiesEdit

Dragon PrimerEdit

Fish PrimerEdit

Fish is a tier two Vintage Deck that tries to win throug little creatures like "Isamaru", "Kataki, War´s Wage" and "Meddling Mage". Secondly Fish includes a lot of hate-cards and counters like Force of Will and Stifle or Trickbind. As an answer for creatures it has 4 Swords to Plowshares, the best Spot-Removal ever printed.

It´s a nice opportunity to start with playing Vintage and a so called Budget-Deck, the most valuable cards are Force of Will and probably Meddling Mage.

At a high player-skill it could even reach the Top 8 of a T1 tournament.

Grimlong/Deathlong PrimerEdit

Food Chain Goblins PrimerEdit

Famous decksEdit

Here are some famous decks of tournament winners:

Zak Dolan 1994 world championEdit

  • 1 Library of Alexandria
  • 4 Savannah
  • 4 Tropical Island
  • 4 Tundra
  • 2 Strip Mine

15 lands

  • 1 Clone
  • 2 Old Man of the Sea
  • 1 Time Elemental
  • 1 Vesuvan Doppelganger
  • 1 Birds of Paradise
  • 1 Ley Druid
  • 4 Serra Angel

11 creatures

  • 1 Ancestral Recall
  • 1 Control Magic
  • 1 Mana Drain
  • 1 Recall
  • 1 Siren's Call
  • 2 Stasis
  • 1 Timetwister
  • 1 Time Walk
  • 1 Regrowth
  • 1 Armageddon
  • 2 Disenchant
  • 1 Kismet
  • 4 Swords to Plowshares
  • 1 Wrath of God
  • 1 Black Lotus
  • 1 Black Vise
  • 1 Howling Mine
  • 1 Icy Manipulator
  • 1 Ivory Tower
  • 1 Mana Vault
  • 2 Meekstone
  • 1 Mox Emerald
  • 1 Mox Jet
  • 1 Mox Pearl
  • 1 Mox Ruby
  • 1 Mox Sapphire
  • 1 Sol Ring
  • 1 Winter Orb

34 other spells

Sideboard

  • 1 Chaos Orb
  • 1 Circle of Protection: Red
  • 1 Copy Artifact
  • 1 Diamond Valley
  • 1 In the Eye of Chaos
  • 1 Floral Spuzzem
  • 2 Karma
  • 1 Magical Hack
  • 1 Power Sink
  • 1 Presence of the Master
  • 1 Reverse Damage
  • 1 Sleight of Mind
  • 1 Kismet
  • 1 Winter Blast

15 sideboard cards

Last modified on 13 April 2014, at 15:09