So normally in this series we cover decks that sit at a one-hundred dollar budget. But what happens when you just want to play some good old fashioned Pioneer on Magic: The Gathering Online the way that God and Richard Garfield intended? Well, today we’re going to cover a list with which you can do just that. It is important to state upfront that we will be using Mana Traders and their Loan Program as the basis of this article and any future ones like it. We aren’t sponsored by Mana Traders (we could be though!), they just have the best version of this program available. If other companies want to do seven tix (or more eyeballemoji.jpg) then we certainly won’t complain.
First things first, why seven tix? For those who refuse to read the first paragraph of an article, we will be taking advantage of Mana Trader’s free account, wherein they will loan anyone or anything with a pulse seven tix worth of Magic Online Digital Objects for free. This means that if one can assemble a deck that costs in total less than seven tix, they can play it for absolutely free. But what are we playing? Let’s take a look at today’s seven tix list: Jund Food.
Jund Food is a synergy driven attrition strategy with access to a combo finish, or in other words a deck that wants to grind an opponent out into the long game until it decides that play time’s over and fires the giant cannon to close things out. It looks to take advantage of the Food mechanic from Throne of Eldraine, in combination with multiple sacrifice outlets and sacrifice payoffs in order to whittle an opponent down over the course of many turns. The deck can then pivot thanks to Bolas’s Citadel, which allows it to flood the board with permanents and sacrifice them all in one swoop to close the game out on the spot.
Acting as the backbone of the deck is the Food core. Gilded Goose acts as a repetitive source of food while also being able to jam out some of the other threats ahead of schedule. It really exemplifies the main theme of the deck, which is a collection of cards that seem rather innocuous on their face but quickly snowball out of proportion when left unchecked. Alongside the Goose is everyone’s favorite slow-play warning generator, the Cat Oven Combo. Cauldron Familiar and Witch’s Oven pair up to generate substantial advantage over the course of several turns while offering free blocks and incidental lifegain every step of the way. Tying the room together is Trail of Crumbs, which works in tandem with both the Goose and the Cat Oven to keep the hand stocked with fresh cards. Being able to generate life, mana, and cards in hand for essentially no cost every turn is the glue that holds the Jund Food deck together, though the rest of the deck is no slouch either when it comes to generating massive advantage.
Generating Massive Advantage
Food tokens are very conducive to sacrifice synergies, considering that most of the cards that take advantage of them want them to be sacrificed. As such, Mayhem Devil is at its absolute best here, with a near constant supply of food and food accessories just waiting to be sacrificed. The devil is primarily a win condition, though can be used to snipe down an opposing team to buy a couple of extra turns through a creature based onslaught. Not to mention just how difficult it can make combat math, when needing to consider the extra damage offered by an untapped Cat Oven or Goose. Similarly, Zulaport Cutthroat looks to chip in its own incidental damage whenever a creature dies. With the majority of cards in the deck being relatively fragile on their own, things tend to die in this deck pretty regularly. This is also further paid off by the likes of Catacomb Sifter, who not only brings their own child sacrifice to the party, but also enables some filtering of the top of the library whenever something else perishes. Outside of the combo, the primary methods of establishing death are Priest of Forgotten Gods and Woe Strider, which both act to sacrifice dudes for additional value. Stacking all of these incidental triggers up together turn after turn is the real threat that this deck’s primary plan offers. While three mana Scry 1 may not seem super enticing, over the course of three turns a six mana “Gain six life, deal three damage to any target, target opponent loses three life, add GBB, Scry 2, draw four” is a pretty good deal.
The Combo Cannon
Rounding out the deck is the combo aspect, which relies solely on Bolas’s Citadel. Taking advantage of the first ability to spam creatures into play enables its own series of triggers to happen, from making tokens to draining life and using Prosperous Innkeeper to gain life (which will in turn help keep the cycle going). Sifter and Woe Strider can also use their Scry abilities to keep lands off the top of the deck, further enabling the Citadel train to keep on rolling. Once a sufficient number of pieces are in play, the second ability to fire the cannon becomes live. On top of dealing ten damage on the spot, there’s also all of the additional triggers to factor in. With one Zulaport and one Mayhem Devil in play, sacrificing ten creatures will result in thirty damage worth of damage.
How does it play?
At the moment, Jund Food’s biggest nemesis is Karn the Great Creator. Turning off artifacts is huge against the deck that wants to activate a hundred artifacts every turn. That said, the deck is quite resilient against most strategies that look to play the game past turn three. There isn’t a ton of interaction so stack based decks like Lotus Field can definitely be an issue as well. When compared to the RB Sacrifice deck, there are definitely some similarities and some glaring differences between the two shells. Sac is better suited for non-creature decks with its litany of spell based interaction and planeswalkers, whereas Food dominates the permanent based wars. The deck feels extremely tight and the synergy is strong, the only weaknesses are in the general construction and its position against the field at large. The deck has a lot of polarized matchups, and is more likely to have either a great or terrible day instead of just a fine one with an average record. That said, there is some amount of flexibility in the list, and room to tune to address specific concerns within a local metagame. Being a seven tix list, I think that now is a reasonable time to try the deck as it has a very good matchup against the likes of Rakdos and Azorius Control.
That’s all for this one. If you found the seven tix series interesting, make sure to let me know as I always love to experiment with how these articles are presented. I have a pretty deep well of seven tix strategies to cover, so if it’s something that you enjoy please make it known! In the meantime, stay safe, play smart, and thanks for reading.