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Nadaar, Selfless Paladin Art by Aaron Miller

Alchemy Orzhov Venture Competitive Deck Guide – Venture Your Way to Mythic!

Orzhov Venture was the top performing deck of the Kamigawa: Set Championship so DoggertQBones wasted no time trying it! Learn how to board in the most popular matchups and the best tips for playing the deck!

Hello everyone! I’ve done a few competitive deck guides so far, but now we’re switching formats! With the Set Championship being Alchemy and Historic, we saw a litany of new strategies come into the limelight, and probably the biggest surprise of the weekend, Alchemy looked awesome! There were so many cool decks cruising through the field so I felt that I had to write about them ASAP! Of course to start out, we have to go with the winning deck list!

Orzhov Venture was easily the most surprising deck for me as I initially slated the Venture buffs to not be enough, but I’m glad to see that I was wrong! Let’s take a look at the list.

Orzhov Venture by Eli Kassis
by Paul
Buy on TCGplayer $257.44
best of 3
4 mythic
43 rare
2 uncommon
11 common
Planeswalkers (2)
Instants (8)
Vanishing Verse
Power Word Kill
Infernal Grasp
Hagra Mauling
Sorceries (3)
Enchantments (4)
60 Cards
15 Cards

What I absolutely love about this deck is it’s simplicity and it’s efficiency. With how the list is designed, your cards are either a good threat or a good answer. Headlining the deck of course are the adventure cards which can be both! Triumphant Adventurer and Nadaar, Selfless Paladin are both value creatures that can get you through the dungeon quickly while being strong threats on their own! For Venture interaction, the Precipitous Drop buff was apparently enough for it to break through and now that I’ve tried it, it’s the real deal. Killing a small creature (or big one later in the game) and getting additional value is pretty nuts!

Although the deck is called Venture, it’s not so insular that the deck needs to be built around it. We get to play additional great threats like Archon of Emeria, Citystalker Connoisseur, The Wandering Emperor, and Liesa, Forgotten Archangel which both are good clocks as well as interaction! Then beyond that, we have a litany of different interactive spells whether it’s Duress to help disrupt the opponent’s hand alongside Citystalker or Vanishing Verse and Hagra Mauling to control the opposing threats.

It’s been awhile since we’ve seen a good aggressively slanted midrange deck be viable in any of Arena’s formats, and I’m very glad it’s one that’s so sweet!


Triumphant Adventurer Art by Alexander Mokhov
Triumphant Adventurer Art by Alexander Mokhov

Orzhov Venture

+1 Reckoner Bankbuster-1 Intrepid Adversary

You could potentially do a lot of boarding in this matchup, but realistically, you’d just be swapping good cards for fine cards. I think this deck is more or less pre-boarded for the mirror as you’re just trying to get maximum value out of all your cards and nothing in the board really aides in that game plan. This matchup is going to be all about card advantage so do your best to squeeze every bit of value that you can out of your cards.

Mardu Midrange

+1 Cathar Commando-1 Intrepid Adversary
+1 Dawnbringer Cleric-1 Valki, God of Lies
+1 Thraben Exorcism-1 Infernal Grasp
+1 Duress-1 Archon of Emeria

Mardu Midrange is a pretty similar matchup to the mirror, but the big difference is that they play a lot of really powerful enchantments which can be a huge pain to deal with. To help mitigate, we bring in every additional answer we can for those enchantments so they don’t get anymore value than they have to.

I would say this matchup is slightly unfavored as they have more cards that produce raw card advantage, but as long as you mitigate the enchantments and play the card advantage game, it’s still very close.

Grixis Midrange

+1 Cathar Commando-1 Intrepid Adversary
+3 Graveyard Trespasser-4 Archon of Emeria
+1 Reckoner Bankbuster-1 March of Otherworldly Light
+2 The Meathook Massacre-1 Hagra Mauling
-1 Precipitous Drop
-1 Power Word Kill

Yet another midrange deck! Kamigawa is apparently the advent of midrange so a lot of what I said before is going to apply here as well. The main difference in this matchup versus the other midrange matchups is that Grixis has more removal so Graveyard Trespasser gets a lot more value than it would versus the other decks. Then just like the other two, it’s all about leveraging your cards as well as you can.

Mono White Aggro/Small Creature Decks

+3 Graveyard Trespasser-4 Archon of Emeria
+2 Bloodchief's Thirst-3 Duress
+2 The Meathook Massacre

Against the small creature decks you’re looking to play as the Control deck. Archon of Emeria and Duress are quite bad against these strategies so it’s pretty easy to take those out and bringing in removal like Bloodchief's Thirst and The Meathook Massacre similarly obvious.

The only weirder inclusion is Graveyard Trespasser, but as long as you’re aggressively trading with your other creatures, this will likely be able to gain a few life and then eventually trade with one of their threats which is more than good enough.

Calamity Combo

+4 Graveyard Trespasser-1 Intrepid Adversary
+1 Duress-1 Valki, God of Lies
+1 Reckoner Bankbuster-2 Vanishing Verse
+2 Go Blank-4 Precipitous Drop

Calamity Combo is a super interesting deck coming out of the Championship and one I would consider a strong matchup for this deck. We have 10 cards that attack their hand so then it’s all about mounting an offense that’s fast enough to get underneath their combo.

Play aggressively even in the face of a potential wrath as you can’t let them get too much time to sculpt their hand. However, if you have the choice between deploying another threat and holding up removal to kill a big token then I would hold up removal most of the time.

Izzet Mill

+1 Cathar Commando-2 Vanishing Verse
+4 Graveyard Trespasser-1 March of Otherworldly Light
+1 Duress-1 Power Word Kill
+2 Go Blank-4 Precipitous Drop

Mill wasn’t a popular option at the event itself, but considering Shota Yasooka went undefeated with it, expect more of it. I don’t think this matchup is awful, but I would say it’s likely not great as the curve in our deck is pretty low so a copied Tasha's Hideous Laughter could pretty kill us. We do have a good amount of hand disruption which helps so beyond that just play very aggressively to not give them time to combo.

Naya Runes

+1 Cathar Commando-4 Nadaar, Selfless Paladin
+1 Thraben Exorcism-1 Intrepid Adversary
+1 Duress
+2 Bloodchief's Thirst

Although Naya got knocked around at the Set Championship, it’ll still be a presence in Alchemy. That said, it’s hard to out-scale them in a heads up arms race so working on depleting them of threats is a much better way to go. Keep all their creatures off the board when possible, don’t let them resolve their 4 drop enchantments if possible, and you can pretty easily kill them with pretty much anything.


Liesa, Forgotten [card name=
Liesa, Forgotten Archangel Art by Dmitry Burmak
  • I tend to lean towards Lost Mine of Phandelver when choosing my venture as getting the scry, a treasure, and a card is pretty easy and quite good. However, if I’m facing a deck I need to beat before they combo me then I’ll generally pick Tomb of Annihilation to help increase the clock.
  • Venture cards obviously get better the earlier you deploy them, but I wouldn’t put too much credence in playing them early if you believe you need to remove a scary threat first. That said, I would still prioritize them pretty early.
  • Remember you can hold back Triumphant Adventurer if you need a solid blocker. It’s very easy to get caught in the habit of always attacking as it feels free.
  • Despite having the one of Valki, God of Lies, I wouldn’t prioritize getting a Red land out unless you already have an abundance of mana or that’s a clear path to victory.
  • Be careful what you loot away with the Blood token from Citystalker Connoisseur as this deck is pretty mana intensive so you don’t always want to loot away lands. I probably hold the Blood token here more so than other decks.
  • It seems obvious, but remember that you can put a Precipitous Drop on a creature before completing a dungeon, attack with one of your Venture creatures, complete the dungeon, and kill it before combat.

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Robert "DoggertQBones" Lee is the content manager of MTGAZone and a high ranked Arena player. He has one GP Top 8 and pioneered popular archetypes like UB 8 Shark, UB Yorion, and GW Company in Historic. Beyond Magic, his passions are writing and coaching! Join our community on
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