3 New Aggro Decks Made Competitive by Innistrad: Crimson Vow
Hello everyone! Today I’m going to be highlighting 3 aggro decks that have already gotten significant boosts from Crimson Vow (and may even get more before spoiler season is over!) Aggro has always been my favorite archetype in Magic so whenever a new set comes out, the first decks I’m generally looking at are the aggressive ones.
Not only are they my favorite, aggro decks tend to perform inordinately well week one since many players have a lot of untested brews while aggro decks, while also untested, are much more efficient and can slice through jank. Whether you’re a lover of aggro decks or someone looking to know what new aggressive decks you may need to beat, hopefully this helps!
1. MONORED BURN
Monored, for the first time in a long while, was actually not viable in Standard. The card quality was too low compared to it’s White or Green counterparts and was functionally non-existent in both Standard 2022 and current Standard. However, I’m sure many players have been clamoring to get back on the Monored saddle, but instead of a dedicated aggro deck, I think a Burn deck may be better! Instead of relying on the creature quality to make the deck viable (which is still spotty), the Burn support seems a lot better so far.
The biggest upgrade to this strategy is far and away Chandra, Dressed to Kill. She’s a bit narrow as she’s a bit narrow, but she is absolutely nuts in this deck. Her first plus 1 is excellent as a small piece or reach and nets us a mana which allows us to play any of our 12 one mana spells on turn 3 and even more options when played later! Her second plus 1 is a bit riskier as it whiffs if we hit a land, but if it hits a spell, we can cast it which is a very powerful ability, especially as a +1. Finally, her ultimate is not necessarily game winning, but it’s still very powerful and easy to hit considering she has no other minus abilities.
The second upgrade to this deck is Manaform Hellkite which gives Monored another great top end card. I’m unsure of the exact number we want, but we probably don’t want the full set. Hellkite is really interesting in this deck as it adds damage of all our non-creature spells which can work really well in conjunction with our more expensive burn spells, something that no other card allows us to do. Previously, cards like Roil Eruption and Igneous Inspiration weren’t really playable as there was so little upside to playing them, but with Burn being supported by our other card choices and Manaform Hellkite, we are more than happy to play them.
It’s been awhile since a Burn deck has been viable, but with the two new cards, I think it may be it’s time to shine.
2. RAKDOS VAMPIRES
It’s no real surprise to see Vampires on this list as they’re the featured tribe of the set! Vampires was already on the precipice of playability before, but with (at least) 4 new cards going into the deck, it’d be pretty surprising if they couldn’t make it now!
The first upgrade to the deck is the innocuous Voldaren Bloodcaster who is insanely powerful. First off, she’s a 2/1 Flier which isn’t an incredible stat line, but definitely solid. However, her real worth is that she can create Blood tokens whenever she or another creature dies! This is similar to Skemfar Avenger, but triggering off her own death is a monumental upgrade compared to just other creatures activating the trigger. Why is making Blood good? That leads us to the next upgrade very nicely.
Falkenrath Forebear is the main payoff for having Blood tokens matter. A 3/1 Flier that can’t block normally wouldn’t be a good enough stat line to see play, but when you can recur it for one mana and two Blood tokens? That’s a very powerful effect. It’s simple, clean, powerful, and still not the only Blood payoff!
Anje, Maid of Dishonor is the final Blood payoff (and enabler) in this deck. She has a very nice stat line of 4/5 which blocks extremely well and makes a Blood token whenever she or another Vampire enters the battlefield. The concern with Blood tokens is they aren’t particularly high impact if you don’t have a Falkenrath Forebear you’re looking to reanimate, but for 2 mana and a token or creature, Anje can drain the opponent for 2 which can add up extremely quickly! Anje is definitely one of the cards Vampires needed the most as it’s a large body, synergistic with the rest of the deck, and provides even more reach.
The final upgrade to the deck is the new
With all these new additions in the deck, Vampires is looking to be a strong, synergistic deck ready to take on the format.
3. SELESNYA HUMANS
The final deck for this list is Selesnya Humans where it’s not the featured tribe of Crimson Vow, but has gotten some pretty massive upgrades. Furthermore, although it’s not completely new (it sees some play in Bo1), it has yet to break into true competitive tier and is completely absent in Bo3 so I think it’s close enough.
The first upgrade is one of the most hyped cards coming out of Crimson Vow and a beloved card for many players, Thalia, Guardian of Thraben.
Thalia is an unbelievably powerful card, and that’s far from an exception for this deck where she very well may be at her best. First off, this list plays 0 non-creature spells (in the main) which makes Thalia a completely one sided effect. Second, we have a large swath of ways to buff Thalia’s power which makes her First Strike that much more potent and a monster in combat. Lastly, with Turns being one of the best decks right now, Thalia is an excellent resource to fight against them alongside a really aggressive curve. Humans literally couldn’t have gotten a better card in the deck.
The second really exciting option for Humans is Savior of Ollenbock. There’s so much to unpack here, but this card is also absolutely nuts in Humans. On the surface, it’s very similar to Brutal Cathar, but needs to attack with a bigger creature to get the effect, which doesn’t sound the best, but isn’t bad. However, where it really shines is it’s flexibility.
First off, this can trigger multiple times which van absolutely decimate board states if unanswered. If that’s all it did I’d be unsure if it was better than Brutal Cathar, but it can also target creatures in any graveyard. What this allows is that if you’re not interested in exiling something on the opponent’s side or you don’t have a target, you can start grabbing creatures from your graveyard that will come back when Savior dies! Humans didn’t necessarily need this effect, but it will happily take it!
Even though Humans has only gotten two really exciting cards so far, it’s already looking like one of the premiere aggressive strategies going into Crimson Vow.
There’s a lot of exciting cards coming out of Crimson Vow that look poised to shake up what seemed to be a stale metagame. I’m very excited to see what other goodies get spoiled to see if these powerful decks can get even more powerful!
Thank you for reading!