Brewing in a Top Hat: Historic Anointed Rat Clones

Pack Rat Art by Kev Walker

A warning before we begin: this deck can accidentally crash your game very easily, so be careful.  What’s that?  You’re more interested than ever?  I like your style!  Well then, without further ado, let me introduce you to my most recent brew:

Anointed Rat Clones

What is this deck trying to do?

This is a control deck with a ton of enchantment engines, where the primary gameplan is to use Mythos of Illuna + Anointed Procession to generate tons of copies of the Procession. From there, all of our tokens are copied loads of times, and we quickly overwhelm our opponents with an inexhaustible supply of value. We need time and disruption to set the combo up, so we have a bunch of removal and discard, and our token producers are good at slowing down aggro decks anyway. Even if we don’t draw into the combo, our deck has fantastic synergy between the other pieces; most of my wins have come from decks being unable to defeat the value generated by the secondary plans.

The primary plan has served me well against both aggro and midrange, which is most of the Historic meta. I’ve found many of the other decks unprepared to deal with the combination of cheap disruption and insurmountable value the deck has access to!

Card Choices

Fatal Push: With the amount of aggro in the format, it’s nice to have a premium one mana instant speed removal spell in the format.  Even without fetch lands, it is easy for us to activate Revolt, since our deck already wants to do that for Hidden Stockpile and such.

Thoughtseize: This card is okay.

Pack Rat:
Low-cost token engines are vital so we can curve out well.  Plus there is something extremely satisfying about watching your 1/1 rat turn into a 9/9 rat in one activation.

Hidden Stockpile: The deck’s primary token engine. Once we get set up with an Anointed Procession or three, each servo we sacrifice can make 2-8 more.

Bastion of Remembrance: The tokens we make and sacrifice drain our opponents away with this, plus it can kick-start our Revolt by giving us that initial permanent to sacrifice.  Also a great target to copy with Mythos of Illuna once you’re set up.

Anointed Procession: This is the card the whole deck is built around.  The tokens Mythos of Illuna creates will be doubled, so if you target this once, your following token spells will be increased 8:1.

Wrath of God: Having a sweeper is important for lots of reasons, but I’d like to point out that you can sweep a large board of your own servos to win with a Bastion of Remembrance out.

Mythos of Illuna: There are so many fun things you can cast this on, but the primary target is Anointed Procession.   The token it creates is itself doubled, so a single cast on it will give you three total.  Those three will themselves then produce eight of whatever they copy.  That means you can use Mythos of Illuna to do all sorts of things once you have a few Processions out, like target a land to have access to 8 additional mana next turn and 4 this turn!

Divine Visitation: This can be a bit of a win-more card, but acts as an alternate wincon if you can’t get your Processions going.

Shark Typhoon: This can be an alternate win condition as well, but more often it’s just kickstarting Hidden Stockpile and drawing a card.  Cycle for zero to guarantee it dies.

Castle Ardenvale: This serves a vital role for us in that it is a token creator that cannot be countered.

Fabled Passage: Poor man’s fetchlands.  Trigger your Revolt spells with them.

Sideboard Guide

Grafdigger's Cage Art by Daniel Ljunggren

Sultai / Four-Color Midrange

+/- Variable

There are a lot of different versions of this deck going around, so pay attention to what threats and win conditions they play in game one.  If they are the version that uses Aetherworks Marvel, bring in some Grafdigger’s Cages to keep them from casting off their library.  If they use Nissas to win, bring in Desparks. If they use Ugins, bring in Sorcerous Spyglass.  Find their threats game one and take out the cards that aren’t good against them. Cards like Uro aren’t generally as big a deal, since we’re going way over the top of them.

Gruul / Mono Red Aggro

InOut
+3 Extinction Event-4 Thoughtseize
+4 Aether Gust-1 Divine Visitation
-2 Shark Typhoon

Don’t waste single-target removal on small threats; instead save it for when they try to play Embercleave.  Remember that Aether Gust can save you from an Embercleave on Gruul Spellbreaker by targeting the equipment!  Try to bait them into a big Wrath of God.

Jund Sacrifice

InOut
+2 Grafdigger’s Cage-4 Thoughtseize
+1 Containment Priest-1 Shark Typhoon
+1 Liliana, Dreadhorde General
+1 Sorcerous Spyglass

Spyglass hits Witch’s Oven and Woe Strider. Containment Priest hoses Cauldron Familiar, Collected Company, and Bolas’s Citadel. Cage is one of the best cards you can have against Jund Sacrifice, hosing a huge amount of their deck!

Control

InOut
+2 Despark-2 Fatal Push
+2 Sorcerous Spyglass-3 Wrath of God
+1 Liliana, Dreadhorde General

This match comes down to who can stick their threats better. If they win with Ugin, it is imperative that you get a Spyglass out against it.  There is no coming back from his minus-x ability.  Mythos of Illuna can copy their planeswalkers to pull you back into a game.

The match up against control is rough, and if you find yourself facing it more than you are facing aggro then it would be a good idea to revamp the sideboard and add in 2-3 more cards that are better against Control. Dovin’s Veto and Mystical Dispute are both great for pushing through your important cards against counter-heavy decks like Azorius, or another big threat like Elspeth, Sun’s Nemesis could be good to help overload their counterspells.

Auras

InOut
+3 Extinction Event-2 Thoughtseize
-1 Divine Visitation

Prioritize hands with playable board wipes, especially Extinction Event.  If you see them move Lurrus from side to hand, save your Fatal Push for it.

Tips and Tricks

I keep getting stuck unable to activate Revolt!  Help!

Getting that initial Revolt started can be tough if you’re dead drawing, and there is no feeling worse than having several Hidden Stockpiles without a death to start it all up.  So what do you do if you’re in this situation?

Well, for starters, there are some common habits that are normally good, but are bad in this deck.  For instance, don’t play Fabled Passage turn 1.  I know we have very few one drops and you’re thinking you’ll get that “comes into play tapped” out of the way when it doesn’t help, but for this deck it’s better to play a tapped land and trigger Revolt most of the time.  Save your Fabled Passages if you can; I’m not saying miss land drops to hold them.

Another tip for triggering Revolt that is a little less obvious is you can copy an opponent’s permanent with Mythos of Illuna.  Anything they have that sacrifices will do; just make sure if it can self-sacrifice that they don’t do it in response to the Mythos.  Creatures are the obvious target, since Hidden Stockpile can then sacrifice the token.

How many Anointed Processions can I make before the game crashes?

I wouldn’t go more than 5.  The formula for finding out how many tokens you’ll get is: Tokens = 2x where x is how many copies of Anointed Procession you have.  I can tell you with certainty that two Mythos of Illuna on an Anointed Procession will crash the game, so don’t play a second one, especially since if you played the first one you are in an excellent position to win.  Why not play that second one on a land to ramp yourself 8 instead?  Or a Bastion of Remembrance to make 64 tokens?  There are more ridiculous things you can do than crash the game.  Get creative.

What are the moral pitfalls that I should watch out for when playing a deck that can crash the game?

I’m glad you asked.  Okay; I’m glad I asked.  Listen folks, don’t crash the game just because you can.  That isn’t fun for your opponent, even if it’s fun for you.  I understand that seeing those huge numbers go up and up can be quite exciting; I’m a Johnny myself.  However, there is a person on the other side of that screen.  If you’re at the point you can win, just win.  I’ve warned you that this deck can crash the game so that you can avoid doing it if possible.  As Spider-Man has had to learn repeatedly throughout his reboots, “With great power comes great responsibility.”

Other Cards and Budget Options

elspeth-suns-nemesis-art-crop

Here are some other cards that I tried and evaluated for you.  Some were playable and some, not so much.  Adjust for your collection to craft the version that works best for you, without blowing all your wild cards.

Fungal Infection: This is a great sideboard option against more aggressive decks like mono red and Gruul Aggro. It can be a great roadblock by itself, but later when we have Anointed Procession or Divine Visitation out, then a ton of tokens at instant speed can really destroy some combat steps.

Omen of the Sun: A token maker that can sacrifice itself to trigger Revolt is great, but it costs just a bit too much for what it gives us.

Archon of Sun’s Grace: This is a decent alternate win condition.  We have a ton of enchantments so constellation has plenty of ways to trigger.

Elspeth, Sun’s Nemesis: She is a better sideboard option than main, because Escape makes her very good against Control decks.

Mirrormade: Budget replacement for Mythos of Illuna, but doesn’t make tokens, so it’s just not as good.

The Scarab God: Great sideboard option against creature based midrange.  We don’t have the creatures to make use of it, but your opponents might.

Lithoform Engine: Slow, but this is another way to make tokens copies of Anointed Procession.

Memorial to Glory: Budget Castle Ardenvale.

Ominous Seas: This budget token maker takes a while to get set up, but if you can activate it with enough Anointed Processions, it’s fun to watch your opponents drown in kraken tokens.

Kasmina, Enigmatic Mentor: If the four-drop wasn’t so contested she might make the cut.

Embalm Creatures: Anointed Procession makes all your creatures with Embalm make extra copies of themselves.  Value!

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