MTG Arena Standard Decks – Best-of-Three (BO3) Metagame Tier List – May 2020


Our Magic: The Gathering metagame tier list ranks all the top competitive decks for Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths Standard. With the advent of MTG Arena, there are more events, tournaments and matches being played than ever before and it may be hard to keep track of the best decks in the format. Here, we will include the defining meta decklists, descriptions, and explanations for each archetype, with links to more decklists and deck guides if any are available at the time. If you want to view all the best meta decks and their ranking in one snapshot, we have a summary table below. We’ll provide further explanations alongside all of this.

MTG Arena Meta Tier List for May 2020 Season (Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths)

Our best-of-three tier list is based on recent tournament results and ladder experience. Performance and representation of the metagame are both taken into account. We provide commentary on changes to the metagame and why they are ranked as such below.

Recent Events

Key CardTier (BO1)Tier (BO3)ArchetypeColorDecksGuides
eld-125-fires-of-invention-art-crop12Jeskai Keruga FiresDecksGuide
Lukka, Coppercoat Outcast11Jeskai Yorion LukkaDecksGuide
Obosh. the Preypiercer Art by Daarken1.52Rakdos Obosh SacrificeDecks
iko-226-lurrus-of-the-dream-den11.5Rakdos Lurrus SacrificeDecksGuide
iko-217-zenith-flare11Boros CyclingDecksGuide
Obosh. the Preypiercer Art by Daarken12Mono Red Obosh AggroDecksGuide
piko-216p-winota-joiner-of-forces1.51.5Four-Color WinotaDecksGuide
eld-194-inspiring-veteran-art-crop1.53Mardu KnightsDecksGuide
war-79-bolas-s-citadel21.5Jund SacrificeDecks
Rotting Regisaur (M20) Art by Randy Vargas23Mono Black OboshDecksGuide
eld-226-lucky-clover22Temur AdventuresDecks
thb-229-uro-titan-of-nature-s-wrath21Bant Yorion ControlDecksGuide
rna-149-wilderness-reclamation-art-crop21Temur ReclamationDecksGuide
iko-221-gyruda-doom-of-depths33Simic GyrudaDecks
war-221-teferi-time-raveler-art-crop32Azorius ControlDecks
rna-174-frilled-mystic-art-crop33Simic FlashDecks
Kaheera, the Orphanguard Art by Ryan Pancoast23Gruul Kaheera FiresDecksGuide
m20-191-season-of-growth1.52Selesnya AurasDecksGuide
m20-216-omnath-locus-of-the-roil22Temur ElementalsDecks


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26 Responses

  1. Risto Kaasik says:

    I feel like Simic Flash should be tier 2-3. I played whole last season with Simic Flash (490 games), when DotD was not banned and Flash was unfavored (around 40-60)against it. It has even match-up against Food decks, and completely dominates all the control decks (Fires and Stax) and is very strong against most aggro decks (Gruul, rakdos and mono red). Only decks that completely rekts Flash are Golgari Adventure and Dimir Mill.

    Speaking of Golgari Adventure which I chose to play this season is completely out of the picture. Have played 60 games with it, which is not a lot but still have not played a single mirror match. And frankly I am not having such success with it as I had with Simic Flash. Maybe I’m not playing it correctly but it doesn’t do well against control decks and neither Aggro decks.

    • mtgazone mtgazone says:

      I think your skill and experience of the deck matters a lot in MTG, perhaps even more so than the strength of the deck. 490 games is a lot! The pros bring the strongest decks to tournaments because their skill level is so similar, which means playing a weaker deck would be a huge disadvantage.

  2. Brendan Dillon says:

    Assuming a ban comes on Oko (though I think Restricted list would be more reasonable), it will be interesting to see the next phase of the metagame, though I expect it to remain strongly green, there are just too many strong green cards to build around right now.

    • mtgazone mtgazone says:

      People are expecting the deck will continue on as a Ramp variant just without Oko – kinda like last Standard season, with more options now. Being restricted is out of the question, as that is usually just for the Vintage format.

    • Philip Kendall says:

      Nothing’s ever been restricted in Standard, they’re not going to start now – and if they were, Field of the Dead would have been the prime candidate as it was obnoxious only in multiples.

      • Brendan Dillon says:

        So young… That’s not true at all. Standard (originally known as Type II) had many restricted cards back in the day. Maybe no restricted cards since you started playing, but that’s not ‘never’.
        And what made FoD obnoxious wasn’t when it triggered in multiples, it’s that there were so few ways to counter it in the first place
        Oko is powerful, but it’s just a planeswalker, there are plenty of ways to tackle him, but having to deal with another one right after getting rid of the first, that’s the nauseating part.

  3. Jake S says:

    I’ve been playing a lot of Simic Flash in Plat, and it easily carried me to Diamond in the last couple of days in Bo3. Since hitting Diamond I’ve found it to be less than ideal, but switching to an Izzet Flash version has done absolute wonders.

    What’s nice about the Izzet version in the current metagame is its ability to easily switch to a Draw-Two archetype through sideboarding Irencrag Pyromancers and Improbable Alliances. This lets it have a much better matchup against both aggro and T3feri, though Narset then becomes a problem (though a less painful one than T3feri). Shifting Ceratops is a lot less scary when you have red removal, too.

    Royal Scions is really the standout card. The versatility of cycling through your deck or beating down the opponent wtih their +1s, plus the inevitability of their ult, makes for a very scary card that people tend to either overlook–to their detriment–or dump too many resources into, leaving plenty of room for a Brineborn Cutthroat to get stacked.

    Overall the deck seems to be pretty well positioned against the top of the field, though who’s to say whether it will pick up steam. Personally I’m hoping it doesn’t, so I can afford to grab the Scions in paper!

  4. Kakata says:

    How is Golgari Adventures tier 1? that’s easily the worst deck in the meta right now and I don’t see anyone using that deck in tournaments lately either.

  5. Andrew says:

    Is there a link to BO1 decklists

  6. Brendan Dillon says:

    Considering the Top 8 at MCVII, I think it’s pretty reasonable to move simic Flash into Tier 1, and equally reasonable to move Fires to Tier 2. Personally I prefer Jund Sacrifice over either. Golgari Adventures is probably T2 as well.

    • Damian Cohen says:

      And even more reasonable to include Simic Ramp Elementals (as played by Andrea Mengucci) at least in tier 2 status. It’s been fantastic all the weekend.

    • mtgazone mtgazone says:

      It’s a bit hard to base the list purely on the tournament as it’s a completely different metagame environment – this version of Simic Flash is good, but I’m not sure if it’s Tier 1. Maybe 1.5 currently?

  7. battaile says:

    good stuff Terrence, loving these tier lists

  8. Ayongs says:

    i spent all my WC for temur reclamation, the deck is good but struggle a lot when fight against aggro, any tips pls ? :’)

  9. battaile says:

    “due to its trouble with the manabase.”
    I feel like this deck (Gruul aggro) would be unreal if the mana didn’t suck so badly

  10. Rémi Ragham says:

    When RedDeckWins deck is totally pushed out of the meta, you know that the format is unhealthy 🙁

  11. Andrew M. Lauer says:

    Why are most of the decks on this site BO3? I feel like BO1 is much more popular.

  12. Noname says:

    What are all these old comments, from Nov 2019 for example, doing here? Could you remove them? Makes for a better reading experience if the comments are actually referring to this article.

  13. legolas42 says:

    temur adventure is not in the tier list? it made top 4 at the last MagicFest Online Weekly Championship