Esper Tokens in Standard (Videos)

Feature Article from Brian Braun-Duin
Brian Braun-Duin
10/12/2017 11:01:00 AM
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Tokens are my kind of Magic. I've always loved playing decks that make lots of tokens, and have historically done pretty well with a number of these decks. In recent years, most token generators are planeswalkers, which I also love, but in our current standard format, the go-to engine for producing tokens is Hidden Stockpile and Anointed Procession. This is less of my token style, as I generally prefer to cast cards like Lingering Souls and then pump them with Gavony Township, but I'll settle for Legion's Landing and Shefet Dunes in a pinch.

These kinds of token decks have existed for a while in Standard – ever since Anointed Procession came out – but they haven't really been good enough to put up a big impact on the format. Ixalan looks to change that dynamic, primarily on the back of Legion's Landing. Landing produces a token, which already has synergy, but then can flip into a land that keeps producing tokens, which works extremely well with Procession and Anointer Priest. It's also nice to just make tokens at instant speed and have a consistent source to generate them, which is clutch against sweeper effects to get things going again.

This Esper Tokens deck is based on a list by Magic Online user hogpog_98 who took it to a Magic Online Standard PTQ top 8 last weekend.

I made a few small changes to the deck. Namely, I cut cards like Harsh Scrutiny and Lost Legacy for Demystify and Ixalan's Binding to handle an increase in token mirror matches as well as Ixalan's Binding just being a great card in the current Standard format. Lost Legacy is no longer needed with Approach of the Second Sun falling out of style and I'm honestly just not sure what Harsh Scrutiny is for. Presumably decks like Temur, but I'm not sure if it's that good or that needed.

In Magic Online leagues, each round is an individual struggle against your opponent, their deck and the very structure of the game itself. It takes a dedicated player to be able to go toe-to-toe with these opponents, and I'm part of an elite testing force designed to do so. These are my stories.

- Brian Braun-Duin




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