Hello ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to another edition of The Cardboard Witch. Hopefully you've all been well the past couple days; I personally have been *trapped* at work being *forced* to playtest Standard decks all day (the horror!). When we last left off we finished the 8th installment of our series about deck archetypes in SoM booster draft; "Gotta Catch Em All". Let's jump right back into the mix by looking at one of the most basic but effective aggro decks in the format; G/W Metalcraft. While less popular than some of the other "flashier" Metalcraft decks this archetype is both very aggressive and resilient; it's also much easier to draft. Green based Metalcraft-ish cards are considerably easier to come by than Red ones for example and most of the time I end of playing this deck it's because I notice Green is "open" after I load up early on good White/artifact cards.
Key Cards: One of the most frustrating aspects of playing *any* Metalcraft based deck in this format is managing the "artifact" vs "non-artifact but broken Metalcraft card" ratio in the build. Both Green and White have strong common cards that become downright broken when you have 3 artifacts in play and the tendency will be to over-value these cards when you should be drafting artifacts. Always remember folks; 10 artifacts and 1 Carapace Forger/Auriok Sunchaser/Ghalma's Warden is the basis of a draft deck . 10 Forgers/Sunchasers/Wardens and 1 artifact however is the basis of an impending train wreck.
How Does it Win?: Like most aggro decks G/W Metalcraft seeks to flood the board with cheap aggressive creatures and establish an early beatdown strategy. Unlike most aggro decks however this archetype is designed to switch into "Beadown with Fatties" mode in the mid game once it achieves Metalcraft status. Usually this forces the opponent into a war of attrition he can't win; forcing him to sacrifice weenie after weenie to avoid "4 beats" to the head while absorbing incidental damage from any flyers you played earlier. Throw in efficient removal options like Arrest and Sylvok Replica and you end up with a formidable "mid-range" deck that periodically blows people out of the water on the "nuts" Metalcraft draw.
Overall Rating: While arguably one of the least "sexy" decks in the entire format there's simply no denying that G/W Metalcraft is remarkably effective. This format is largely dominated by 3/3's for 4-5 and any deck that can go right over top of that to 4/4 and 5/5 Metalcraft enhanced beatsticks is going to be strong. Alternately the deck can struggle against good removal and has a limited # of options against large on-color "Bomb" creatures (Arrest). Also like most straightforward aggro decks G/W Metalcraft is designed to be in the lead for most of the game; if your opponent owns the board with faster/larger creatures this can sometimes lead to unwinnable games. Despite these overall failings G/W Metalcraft is still one of the most aggressive and stable builds in the format. It's also ridiculously easy to play well with few activated triggers and a bunch of "big numbers" cards. I feel pretty safe calling this deck a 6 out of 10 overall with a note that it's played less often than it should be simply because it's a little boring.
Well folks that pretty much wraps up our 1 page primer on drafting/building G/W Metalcraft in Scars of Mirrodin booster drafts. As always I hope this information was useful to you and I'd like to thank ya'll for reading my blog. As usually I'm behind at work and not feeling the greatest so don't panic if it takes me a couple days to put out the next article; I'm still planning on finishing *every* single decktype I've seen pop up in triple SoM booster drafts. Until next time remember to let someone else corner the market on Auriok Sunchasers and always keep it weird!