Last time, we discussed some brews using the new cards from Scars of War. With Scars of War heralding the first set rotation, the meta is going to change in a big way. One of the biggest changes looks to be the onset of combo decks. To continue our Scars of War hype train, today I have a combo brew to sate the appetite of those less interested in winning with mere combat math.
Our combo involves these two lovely gentlemen.
With both on the board, any Underworld troop you draw creates at least two Dreadlings, which, being spiders, each draw you a card due to Arachnomancer’s ability. If those newly drawn cards are Underworld troops, you net more spiders, and thus more draws until you fail to draw any Underworld troops. In the right deck, this duo can frequently lead to a near infinite amount of Dreadlings and a lethal attack. The biggest drawbacks to this combo are that it requires you to hit SSBW thresholds and to play two below curve troops. The big positive for the deck is that the combo fits in a proven archetype – Crusader Kagulichu. Let’s take a look at a draft list.
Underworld Crusader socketed with Minor Wild Orb of Vigil
Rune Ear Hierophant socketed with Minor Blood Orb of Intimidation and Major Blood Orb of Sacrifice
Skittergear Gang socketed with Major Wild Orb of Conjuration
Whew. This deck is all over the place. I know this can’t possibly be even close to a good build (let alone an optimal build), but there’s a lot I like going on here. First, I think Skittergear Gang is a beast of a card. Socketed with either Major Wild Orb of Conjuration or Major Sapphire of Sorcery, it is a 5 cost 4/4 which draws a card and creates two bodies when it dies. That might be the definition of value. It is also the elusive dwarf for Mistress of Bones to resurrect. In this deck in particular, the major gem can create an Underworld troop to start our combo.
I also believe Malevolent Machinations will be an important card in Underworld Crusader decks. It is almost as good as it gets versus aggressive decks as it will often be a Carnasaurus which scales upwards. The floor on this card is as bad as it gets, but I feel it will be a staple in troop heavy decks like this. Rotpaw Gang is a card I like a fair bit as a one of in decks like this to give mill effects slightly more value.
There is also a lot to dislike about this deck. The shard base is…well…it’s not pretty. Asking a deck to hit SSBW is a fairly tall order. Somehow, I think we’ve managed to almost make it work in this list, but it won’t come without its inconsistencies. I’m also not sure how I feel about a deck which runs one Rune Ear Hierophant. When would you not want four of this guy? The problem here is that it’s unlikely running twelve three drops is correct. This in part leads me to think that the optimal build here may be to cut down to one copy each of Mad Progenitist and Arachnomancer and have it as the deck’s plan B (which can conveniently be fished from the crypt with Mistress of Bones). Mistress Kagu Crusader has proved to be a formidable deck, and Skittergear Gang alone seems like a steep upgrade for it if we can make the shards work. I think a good number of folks will experiment with Sapphire-Blood-Wild builds, and I’m excited to see what they come up with!
It’s exciting to see the sheer number of decks made possible with Scars of War and how prominently combo looks to play a part. And there are still even more decks to discover! Eternal Invoker may even see its day in the sun with the printing of Absolute Power and Arcane Soil (a whole other combo deck to brew on a later day).
Be sure to tune in to my stream tonight at 3:30 PM PST. While we can’t yet play the deck we brewed today, I will be talking about it and other things to expect from Scars of War constructed, not to mention I will likely play something on the Constructed Ladder. As always, there will be Primal Pack and free Draft, Sealed, and Evolving Gauntlet code giveaways.
See you on the ladder,
Varranis is an analyst for professional gaming organization Fade 2 Karma. He has played countless TCGs over the last eighteen years and brings a unique lens to HEX theory crafting and deck building based on his historical experience. Varranis has numerous tournament wins and top finishes to his name across several popular TCGs and has coached and supported players in world championship level events.