Guilds of Ravnica Standard Deck Tech – Izzet Creature Control
This week I’ll be doing a Standard Deck Tech for each of the five guilds from Guilds of Ravnica. Today I’m taking on an Izzet deck. There are a lot of players that see the Izzet cards today and want to go straight to trying to build a Red/Blue Wizard deck. I'm going to be doing that, but not quite the typical build. I want to have more of a control build for this deck. Don’t get me wrong, you can build a sweet aggro Wizards deck, but I want to see how some of the powerful control cards from the new set will play out in this deck.
I first want to start off with a list of cards from Guilds of Ravnica that I believe could possibly be a good fit in the deck. These could include main deck cards and cards that would eventually end up in the sideboard.
Potential Guilds of Ravnica Cards for the deck
Now that I’ve pulled out the best from Guilds of Ravnica, I want to turn my attention to the card pool from the rest of Standard. There are plenty of cards to choose from, so let’s see what list I’ve come up with of potential cards to put in the deck.
Potential Existing Cards from Standard
Now that I have a list of cards to choose from to make the deck, it’s now time to decide what goes and what stays. What I like to do first is break the cards down by their casting cost with creatures and noncreature spells separated. Let’s see how that breakdown looks below.
1-Casting Cost Spells
I decided to pass on having any 1-mana spells in the deck. With Goblin Electromancer being in the deck some of our spells will end up being one mana spells thanks to its helpful cost reduction.
2-Casting Cost Spells
To start off we went with the obvious choice and jammed in 4 copies of Goblin Electromancer. It helps in reducing the cost of some of our key spells allowing us to cast multiple spells a turn if needed thanks to the Jump-Start ability on some of the cards. For our other 2-drop creatures I decided to go with a versatile creature that can provide card selection and removal with Dismissive Pyromancer. I think this creature will work very well in this deck. Out of the sideboard I decided to have a couple copies of Electrostatic Field against aggro decks.
As you can see there are a lot of choices for 2-drop noncreature spells in the deck. Let me start off with the ones I want to have in the sideboard. For counterspells I want to bring in Negate and Essence Scatter depending on the matchup. For removal, I have Lava Coil that I can bring in from the sideboard. As for all the rest of the cards, since the deck is leaning towards having more creatures than the average control deck, there is only one of these cards that I’m putting in my main deck and that is Blink of an Eye. I think this spell will be a good tempo play that can help us get to the late game where we have more powerful cards.
3-Casting Cost Spells
As you can see, there is only one creature to choose from and that is Exclusion Mage. Like Blink of an Eye, this is a great tempo play that can disrupt your opponent from having an aggressive start to the game. In the 3-drop slot, I’m hoping that Wizard’s Lightning can be a 1 mana spell most of the time thanks to the 13 Wizards in the deck. The best hard counter spell I can play is the new card Ionize. It counters anything and will get in some damage to the face as well. Risk Factor is another new card that I’m hoping will provide some value in this deck. If played correctly you can either deal a quick 8 damage to your opponent or start drawing some much-needed cards to refill your hand if you’ve already got your opponent low enough in their life total. Out of all the others, the only other spell I’m keeping is Fiery Cannonade in the sideboard to deal with decks that plan on playing a lot of smaller creatures like token decks.
4-Casting Cost Spells
I like having Rekindling Phoenix in this deck for both offensive and defensive reasons. It can become a great blocker that can be used turn after turn, or it can shoot through the air dealing 4 points of damage on every attack. I did want to try and fit Crackling Drake in this deck, but just couldn’t find a spot for it. Murmuring Mystic can be great, but since our deck is only half spells, I decided not to put it in. When it came to noncreatures spells I needed some card advantage cards, which is where the new Chemister’s Insight comes into play. The dream is when you can cast it on turn three, the turn after you’ve cast your Goblin Electromancer. The other cards on this list are strong, but just not what I’m looking for in this deck.
5-Casting Cost Spells
I decided to go with 1 of each of the planeswalkers on this list. They are both able to provide card advantage which is what you want. Jaya Ballard can help you cast multiple Jump-Start spells in one turn thanks to the 3 mana it provides. Ral, Izzet Viceroy can help you remove some threats later in the game. Patient Rebuilding is also a source of card advantage, but I didn’t think it would work well with the deck I’ve built up to this point.
6-Casting Cost Spells
When it comes to the two 6-drop creatures in the deck, I decided they both make the cut. Niv-Mizzet, Parun can just start taking over games. Dream Eater does it all. It’s a large flying creature that can instantly come onto the battlefield to block if needed. It bounces a nonland permanent when it comes onto the battlefield and it also helps with your card selection thanks to being able to Surveil 4. The last card in the deck is one I’m very excited to play with and that is Expansion // Explosion. This reverse Sphinx’s Revelation just keeps gaining value the later in the game you cast it. If needed it can also copy an early removal spell, counter spell, or even something fun your opponent might play.
There aren’t many lands to choose from, but here are the ones you could use for this deck.
I’ve decided that it is important in this deck to make sure we can get both colors of mana as often as possible. Because of this, I want to have 12 dual lands in the deck including 4 copies of Izzet Guildgate.
Now that we’ve figured out what cards to use, its now time to build the deck! Here is what I came up with for quantities for the final deck list.
Izzet Creature Control
This deck is different than the typical control deck out there, with a few more creatures than some, but I believe that it can start to control games once you chain some spells together. Some of the cards have a high value pay off if played correctly and I look forward to navigating the deck in the coming weeks. Thanks again for reading this Standard Deck Tech on Guilds of Ravnica deck tech week. Join me again tomorrow for a new guild and a new Standard deck.