SCG Houston: The Return of Devotion

SCG Houston is in the books and has brought with it some new changes to the overall standard metagame. Two decks each put 2 copies in the top 8: G/R Devotion and Jeskai Tokens. For quite some time it has been felt that G/R devotion is no longer a top strategy, more or less since the rotation of Burning-Tree Emissary, so for it to have such a good showing is mildly surprising.

Robert Berni – 1st (37)
Boon Satyr
Elvish Mystic
Whisperwood Elemental
Genesis Hydra
Polukranos, World Eater
Eidolon of Blossoms
Courser of Kruphix
Sylvan Caryatid
Voyaging Satyr
Crater’s Claws
Ugin, the Spirit Dragon
Lands (23)
10 Forest
Mountain
Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx
Temple of Abandon
Wooded Foothills

Sideboard (15)
Genesis Hydra
Nissa, Worldwaker
Setessan Tactics
Xenagos, God of Revels
Arbor Colossus
Nylea’s Disciple
Reclamation Sage

This deck is pretty standard fare for devotion: put dudes on the field, cast big things very quickly, eventually do absurd things with tons of mana. The addition of Crater’s Claw allows the deck to bypass the well known road blocks of Hornet Queen and Hornet Nest (both of which are absent from the list, a fact that I like). The standout new card that the strategy got is Whisperwood Elemental, which allows the deck to continue developing it’s board without having to fear cards like Crux of Fate or End Hostilities as much.

Tannon Grace – 8th (36)
Whisperwood Elemental
Shaman of the Great Hunt
Rattleclaw Mystic
Genesis Hydra
Courser of Kruphix
Arbor Colossus
Voyaging Satyr
Polukranos, World Eater
Elvish Mystic
Crater’s Claws
Xenagos, the Reveler
Nissa, Worldwaker
Lands (24)
Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx
Temple of Abandon
Rugged Highlands
Mana Confluence
Windswept Heath
Wooded Foothills
Forest
Mountain

Sideboard (15)
Outpost Siege
Wild Slash
Briber’s Purse
Setessan Tactics
Arbor Colossus
Nylea’s Disciple
Arc Lightning
Reclamation Sage

The 8th place list has a number of differences from the winning list, most of which revolve around Shaman of the Great Hunt. The deck wants to play creatures more capable of attacking to get value out of the Shaman, as well as ways to create multiple creatures turn after turn with the planeswalkers.

The lists for the top 32 can be found here for anybody interested. G/R devotion, with 5 total copies in the top 32, is certainly an archetype that is here to stay. This is not even counting the fact that the Temur Ascendancy combo decks are basically a G/R devotion deck that adds for the possibility of an infinite combo.

Chris Wendelboe

Chris is a level 2 judge from Ashland, New Hampshire. He enjoys Scapeshift, modern, and putting on the best events possible.