DeadShift - Standard

Updated: Sep 16, 2019

This is the best deck in Standard. At least the meta and the community are telling us so.

I don't think I really have a choice here, folks. We have to talk about this deck....Casting Scapeshift at instant speed using Teferi, Time Raveler to abuse the token generation capabilities of Field of the Dead may be better than a hot fudge sundae, and I love sundaes.

I suppose it shouldn't come as any great surprise that Scapeshift combo decks are dominating the PRO-AM circuits right now. Scapeshift is powerful. LandSayGo has been trying to abuse it since it was released back into the Standard wilds. Unfortunately, we were never really able to achieve what we consider an acceptable level of abuse, and Magic players tend to formulate their creations through a sort of collective conscience. The "hive mind" came to an agreement, and created what I believe to be the best deck in Standard until the September 2019 rotation - period. DeadShift.

This deck just won MagicFest Denver - of course you may have never known that because our friends over at ChannelFireball have a strict no fun policy when it comes to coverage. At this point, there is no sense in rehashing old conversations - but no Twitch streams for these CFB events just sucks for the common enthusiast and average spectator.

At any rate, Luis Scott-Vargas piloted "Bant Scapeshift" or "DeadShift" to victory. A remarkable feat no doubt, and his 4th individual GP win. He truly is one of the greats. Congrats, LSV.


Nearly half of our deck is devoted to the land permanent type. It's essential that we have 7 differently named land cards to abuse Field of the Dead, and boy howdy, do we abuse Field of the Dead with this deck. At times while testing this deck, as you will see in the stream tonight, there are instances where it just feels like we are playing a "Hydroid Krasis deck." If you can't hit the land requirements or a Scapeshift - then you essentially are.

The exploit we are leveraging is really Teferi, Time Raveler; searching up and placing lands on the battlefield with Sorcery spells at Instant speed is the main line of the deck, and you should keep that in mind if and when you test this deck for yourself. Your creatures are meant to compliment the ramp game plan - use them as chump blockers continuously. We are creating an army of the dead. Which surprisingly, given the noticeable waning of counter-magic has been very easy to accomplish. Honestly, this has been a blast to play, and tonight's stream will be a deviation for LandSayGo as we play a massive contender for the best deck in the format, and ignore the tier 3 and tier 4 brews we constantly generate.

Tonight we make little more progress towards Mythic. Tonight we're gonna have ourselves a real good time.

I have a knack for finding the right lines of play as it pertains to ramp decks. I've been told that I take too many risks, that I'm a loose cannon, that I'm all loosey-goosey. Yes.

Here is our tool set for the ramping game - our spells that help us exploit the Field of the Dead:

Arboreal Grazer is a damn fine common Magic card - it good at suppressing early game aggro (even from small flyers) and provides us with multi-colored land ramp, its almost too efficient to be fair. Circuitous Route helps us hit the qualifier for Zombie tokens by allowing us to search up several uniquely named lands. Elvish Rejuvenator is yet another purpose driven card aimed at hitting lands and enhancing our line of play. Grow from the Ashes helps us tutor out our basic lands, which are the optimal targets for Scapeshift. RAMP YOUR BUNS OFF, FOLKS.

There are lots of good sideboard options in this list as well, but the main deck line is just so simple and efficient. Hopefully we get to really pull off some craziness, and I have a sneaking suspicion that I won't be the only person playing this deck in the competitive lists tonight and as such may tweak the sideboard on the fly.

A Naya ramp deck running this same combo with access to a sideboard of top end finishers and Alpine Moon sounds pretty doggone good too.

I will be streaming tonight - July 24th starting around 9PM CST, and I hope to see you there!


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