State of the Meta—Big Bant Wolf

I could tell you about misplays and about bad matchups and I could go over every opponent I played on Saturday’s PTQ, but I’d rather get you ready for Standard this week. Coming off the heels of Pro Tour Gatecrash I’m excited to see the overall deck diversity and strange brews that are rampant right now. We’re one month into Gatecrash Standard and things are looking balanced, if not a bit Aggro.

It’s time to build the best mid-range deck. There I said it. The power creep on creatures is at an all time high. Control can’t keep up. And if you wanna play a rousing game of Who’s the Beatdown? Be my guest. For me it’s all about trumping the decks that plan on trumping Aggro. Taking a cue from Melissa De Tora’s Wolf Run Bant, I have decided to make a Wolf Run Deck of my own. Big Bant Wolf (Run). Naya can have its Reckoners and Huntmasters and it’s Rakdos Returns. I’m on Geist and Biomancer and Clan Defiance/Sphinx’s Revelation. Boros charm is nice but I can play Rootborn Defense to protect my Giest as well as Selesnya Charms and Simic Charms. Thanks to Reckoner ‘s success I was able to purchase a play set of Thragtusks on the cheap. Here’s the prototype.

Big Bant Wolf

4 Thragtusk
4 Geist of Saint Traft
1 Supreme Verdict
2 Zegana, Prime Speaker
2 Selesnya Charm
3 Farseek
1 Master Biomancer
1 Clan Defiance
1 Sphinx’s Revelation
2 Blind Obedience
2 Restoration Angel
4 Loxodon Smiter
2 Simic Charm
3 Centaur Healer
1 Gideon, Champion of Justice
1 Jace, Architect of Thought
1 Tamiyo, Moon Sage
2 Kessig Wolf Run
3 Hallowed Fountain
3 Breeding Pool
3 Temple Garden
2 Glacial Fortress
4 Hinterland Harbor
2 Sunpetal Grove
2 Stomping Ground
2 Forest


3 Jace Memory Adept
1 Rest In Peace
2 Terminus
3 Supreme Verdict
2 Negate
2 Dispel
2 Rhox Faithmender

After a few test sessions I was really happy with how the deck played. I rarely get land screwed… I don’t NEED to turn two Farseek, three is just fine. Biomancer is kind of bonkers in a creature mirror especially with Giest (6/6 Angel) and Selesnya Charm (4/4 Knight) Thragtusk (5/5 Beast) and even Zegana, Prime Speaker for more cards! I may go to two. Restoration Angel is really getting some work in too, may go to four. Wolf Run adds a solid peice of envitibilty and Clan Defiance is sweet, too. The Verdict may go to sideboard as I’m not keen on losing my hoard.

I played Charles’ Don King (Domri Rade) Naya deck. Games went well and most times I had plenty of options. I’m interest on my Jund match up but I think the Simic Charms really help there (hexproof/bounce your Olivia). Nick was rocking some Crypt Ghast/Griselbrand deck, which I was able to fight well with Selesnya Charm.

I built the deck based on the prevalence of Boros Reckoner. EVERYONE is playing that card. And if there’s one thing I’m good at is crushing a called meta game. Thragtusk was the card but now it’s Reckoner, so most of the cards in this deck trade one for one with him. As with Simic/Selesyna Charm, some times he just dies. Restoration Angel also does God’s work. Geist deck wins (aka Lucky Charms) is less a problem since I run my own and can block him just fine.

Plus, I’m playing big creatures in Bant colors and using Wolf Run. Big Bant Wolf! It’s too good a name to not be a deck. I know you’re excited to see how I do this Tuesday with a mid-range deck. I’ll be live tweeting/Instagraming my matches this week so check out @Hotcblog on Twitter and RockerTycoon on Instagram. Give me your support!

Let me take a second to thank all the people that gave me words of encouragement/consolement during the PTQ. Micah, Maha, Zil especially. I did not enjoy my time in the basement but the new friends I made and the jokes we made at our own expense were well worth it.


Zac Clark, Mid Range Maverick

State of the Meta is a Hipsters of the Coast column about the Constructed Metagame. Focused on Standard with occasional asides to Legacy Modern and finance, it is a commentary of the current trends in Constructed magic and a place that Zac Clark vents about the weekly TNM.

5 Responses to “State of the Meta—Big Bant Wolf”
  1. Matt Jones says:

    I’ve seen a lot of these decks online now. The Junk Reanimator deck i’ve been playing has a pretty easy time with most non-Prime Speaker Bant decks. What do you think is excellent sideboard technology against P.S. Bant?

    • Zac Clark says:

      Appetite for Brains

      • Matt Jones says:

        A lot of the 4-0 and 3-1 decks look like this:
        3 Angel of Serenity
        3 Arbor Elf
        4 Avacyn’s Pilgrim
        4 Breeding Pool
        2 Cavern of Souls
        2 Cyclonic Rift
        1 Detention Sphere
        4 Farseek
        4 Forest
        1 Garruk Relentless
        2 Garruk, Primal Hunter
        3 Gavony Township
        1 Hallowed Fountain
        3 Hinterland Harbor
        4 Loxodon Smiter
        3 Prime Speaker Zegana
        4 Restoration Angel
        4 Sunpetal Grove
        4 Temple Garden
        4 Thragtusk

        1 Cavern of Souls
        2 Detention Sphere
        2 Feeling of Dread
        2 Jace, Memory Adept
        3 Rest in Peace
        3 Syncopate
        2 Trostani, Selesnya’s Voice

      • Zac Clark says:

        AfB does a lot of damage here. The meta is once again shifting to Mid-range. I’d expect Esper to do well for a bit. Not your style of course, but it seems like the better mouse trap.

        Angel was a card I just didn’t have any of. Verdict is so rampant, while terminus is not… Junk can cast Rites to get around that but maybe Rootborn Defense is a card?

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  1. […] other topics, Zac Clark broke down his design of “Big Bant Wolf” in response to the post-Pro Tour metagame, while […]

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