Ravnica Allegiance Standard Brews: Gruul

Chantelle CampbellStandard

Last week, I brewed up a new Standard Simic deck using my old friend Carnage Tyrant. It was so much fun that I decided to try again this week – but this time, we’re going Gruul!

A 7/6 Trampling Hexproof Dino is already a promising way to close out games, but I found myself asking, “Why not give it Haste?” Thankfully, with the addition of Domri, Chaos Bringer, I found a way to do just that.

Using the popular Standard Golgari Midrange deck as a base, I’ve created a Gruul deck that’s both linear and explosive. This brew can’t grind out games quite like Golgari, but it provides a more straightforward way to close out the late game with Banefire, as well as a versatile sideboard that can be adjusted for the new metagame.

New Gruul

3 Carnage Tyrant
3 Gruul Spellbreaker
4 Jadelight Ranger
4 Llanowar Elves
4 Merfolk Branchwalker
3 Rekindling Phoenix
4 Zhur-Taa Goblin
2 Thrash // Threat
4 Lightning Strike
2 Banefire
3 Domri, Chaos Bringer
9 Forest
7 Mountain
4 Rootbound Crag
4 Stomping Ground

1 Banefire
3 Cindervines
2 Rampage of the Clans
3 Vivien Reid
4 Wildgrowth Walker
2 Collision // Colossus


Just like the R/G Dinosaur decks that were popping up before rotation, this deck’s power comes from its versatile Riot threats, such as Zhur-Taa Goblin and Gruul Spellbreaker. Most importantly, Riot can trigger more than once per creature; when you use Domri, Chaos Bringer to cast your Gruul Spellbreaker, you can choose both modes!

Gruul Spellbreaker also plays an important role against Settle the Wreckage, a card that could have previously blown out this heavily creature-based strategy. While this deck could be weak to the new four mana board wipe, Kaya’s Wrath, Domri’s minus helps you rebuild quickly. Also, if your opponent can’t follow up a Wrath with a fast clock, Banefire should help you close out many games.

New Sideboard Tools

Of our new sideboard cards, Cindervines is the one I’m most interested in testing out. Control decks are unlikely to bring in enchantment removal against this deck, so Cindervines can often win Games 2 and 3 on its own. Additionally, it blows up Ixalan’s Binding and Conclave Tribunal!

Between Collision//Colossus and Vivien Reid, this deck has great answers to flying threats, from Lyra Dawnbringer to basically any card in Izzet Drakes (I’m looking at you, Niv-Mizzet). We also have four Wildgrowth Walkers, which may make it to the main deck if the aggressive decks are fast enough.

With all of these decks I’m brewing up, I’m not sure what I’m going to play after the new set is released. Next week is Azorius, and who knows what those lawmakers might bring!