Explorations in Ramp

Growth Spiral was a card I initially wrote off. I figured that if the effect was good enough that Explore would see more play. Combine this with the lack of powerful utility lands in Pauper, the prevalence of Tron, and the lack of anything good to do at the top end and I set the card on the back burner.

Enter Standard. Specifically Throne of Eldraine Standard after the most recent wave of bans. I watched a number of Simic Flash/Ramp decks perform well and wondered if something similar could work in Pauper. There is a ton of power in leaving up mana in a blue deck, so much so that Pro Tour Champion Mike Hron never cast a creature into 2U for fear of Exclude even though the card didn’t exist in Time Spiral Limited.

So I put together this list and it performed adequately. A 3-2 finish is enough to keep me interested in a concept for a few league runs. The next time through I ran into Stompy twice and quickly entered the three loss bracket. I went back to the drawing board and added Moment’s Peace to the main.

Of course thinking about the deck today I realize that it’s probably just correct to add a Mountain, move to Brainstorm and Ash Barrens, and go in on Swirling Sandstorm. Which, to be honest, sounds sweet.

The goal of this deck is to operate on your opponent’s end-step and exhaust them of resources a la the old Snow-Go deck. Unlike that deck, I do not want to lean too heavily on one-for-one removal. As Tron has shown, trying to remove threats individually is not as good as simply buying time. With endgame threats like Havenwood Wurm, Ulamog’s Crusher, and potentially Skittering Crustacean, I am interested to see how Temur Ramp performs moving forward.

Published by Alex Ullman

Alex Ullman has been playing Magic since 1994 (he thinks). Since 2005, he's spent most of his time playing and exploring Pauper. One of his proudest accomplishments was being on the winnings side of the 2009 Community Cup. He makes his home in Brooklyn, New York, where he was born and raised.

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