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Delver Decks

Happy Thursday MTG peeps,

Today we want to yatter a bit about a one-drop Innistrad common which has recently been getting a lot of love and attention from Magic the Gathering players. It's been called the new blue flying Wild Nacatl (Shards of Alara) and if you had not yet seen it on the kitchen table or the game table at Friday Night Magic, we think that you will soon enough.

The card we're talking about is Delver of Secrets. This one drop transform card provides excellent tempo and fairly versatile in that many players we've seen will splash blue just to have it. The goal of most the decks featuring Delver is to have it come down turn 1, and then have it transform as soon as possible. The player will hopefully then be able to afford it a measure of protection in the following turns with counterspells or bouncing threats to maintain tempo and deliver an aireal barrage with this modest 3/2 flyer which can add up to quite a bit of damage.

As the key here is to have it transform, you will want to pack your build with a variety of instants and sorceries based on your local metagame. A few spells worth considering may be the following:

Gitaxian Probe for one blue phyrexian mana allows for a nice card draw after looking at your opponent's hand for upcoming threats.
Ponder for one blue gives you an opportunity to arrange the next picks in your library for an answer to your opponent's threats.
Think Twice for 1U provides a card draw with flashback.
Mana Leak for 1U is a great counterspell give your new Insectile Aberration protection.
Dissipate for 1UU may be rather important in your
metagame with all those flashback / recursion shenanigans rather popular right now.
Gut Shot for one red phyrexian mana will kill illusion builds, your opponent's one-drop mana dorks and those nasty Inkmoths.
Dismember for one and two black phyrexian mana is an efficient killer.
Bounce spells such as Vapor Snag and Disperse will give you the ability to bounce creatures or non-land permanents in the case of Disperse back to your opponent's hand. In desperate times you may even want to respond to your opponent's burn spell / board wiper / or other spot removal by bouncing your own Delver back to your hand.

As the Delver of Secrets is a Human Wizard as well as a Human Insect (just like Jeff Goldblum), it can also be equipped with a Silver-Inlaid Dagger (or Sharpened Pitchfork / Butcher's Cleaver) to provide a decent boost. Runechanter's Pike can also pump up your little blue man by all those instants and sorcery cards that are now in your graveyard. Likewise the versatile Bonds of Faith Aura can provide a boost for Delver or a lock-down on an apponent's threat.

So where to take this build . . .
Obviously Delver's best buddy is Snapcaster Mage but for $30, not a lot of casual players like us can afford this. We really would like MTG Daily writer Jacob Van Lunen (one of our fav writers on the Mothership) to take a crack at building something which we can then consider and adopt to our tastes or adapt to our local meta-game. There's also a really interesting U/R 'counterburn' deck out there. Another interesting build we've seen recently comes from Justin Vizaro who brewed up a Delver Illusions budget deck over at TCG Player . . .

Creatures : 4 Delver of Secrets, 4 Phantasmal Bear, 2 Phantasmal Dragon, 4 Lord of the Unreal
Spells : 3 Disperse, 4 Dissipate, 3 Gitaxian Probe, 3 Gut Shot, 4 Mana Leak, 3 Ponder, 4 Vapor Snag

Pretty decent.
Anywhoos - we want to know from you where you would take a budget build featuring Delver of Secrets. Drop us a line or a decklist below in the comment thingy and we here at MTG Realm may just bust it out at the next FNM and give you credit.
Lastly -

The folks over at MTG Mint Card is holding a Thanksgiving Sale with a 7% Store Wide Discount. Ensure you use the coupon code provided (linky HERE) on checkout page in order to redeem this offer. Hurry up as this offer valid through 18 November, 2011 .


Korwinga said...

I was looking at doing something similar. My thought was to do a U/R deck, using delver and another one drop, Reckless Waif, to fuel the aggro. Then I could use the counter magic you mentioned, backed up by burn to either clear the field, or finish off the other player. I don't have a complete decklist yet, but I've been working on it.

Hybrid said...

I've seen a u/g build with mayor of avabruck, green sun, snapcaster, and a bunch of removal. did pretty well at fnm.