We're approaching the twilight of Hour of Devastation Standard and the metagame at this point is well-known. Temur Energy is the new top do, supplanting Ramunap Red and Zombies, with a spate of solid tier two decks behind them, including G/B Constrictor and various control strategies.
But a new deck has emerged recently, built around one of the more powerful cards in Hour of Devastation, Crested Sunmare. We most all know how powerful Wingmate Roc and Broodmate Dragon were and Crested Sunmare acts like another of those creatures, but with the upside of being able to continue to churn out tokens and have those tokens be immune to most sweepers.
The only way to clear away those horse tokens without first getting rid of the original is Hour of Devastation, and unsurprisingly, this deck has four copies of Gideon, Ally of Zendikar, which can anthem your team above the powerful red sweeper. And if you ever get two copies of Crested Sunmare onto the battlefield, they protect each other, making things like Fumigate virtual blanks.
Of course, realizing that potential is the tricky part, and this deck goes far out of its way to maximize its build around, with a slew of life-gain cards. Most of them are attached to solid bodies, but Crypt of the Eternals lets you make two horses on turn five even from no battlefield, and Authority of the Consuls, in addition to being a bomb against Ramunap Red, lets you gain life on your opponent's turn, thus making more horses on their end step.
These enablers for Crested Sunmare also give the deck a strong aggressive plan that opponents have to take into account. Curving your early creatures into a Gideon, Ally of Zendikar can easily lead to a turn five kill, so your opponent often has to use their interaction early, leaving them vulnerable to the horse brigade.
With so much space dedicated to its plan, there is less room for interaction, but the high amount of life gain lets the deck play four copies of Anguished Unmaking in its 75, so the interaction you do have is flexible.
Crested Sunmare is a great trump in midrange matchups while the cheap creatures and life gain position you well against aggressive decks. This deck could be a sleeper hit for #GPDC, making a late push in a complacent metagame much like U/W Monument a few months ago.
- 4 Crested Sunmare
- 4 Glory-Bound Initiate
- 4 Lone Rider
- 4 Sunscourge Champion
- 4 Thraben Inspector
- 1 Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet