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Naya Tokens - A Metagame Answer

2019-08-02 | Share: Twitter | Reddit | WhatsApp

Selesnya Tokens is an old Standard deck by now. But its popularity kept declining since the release of War of the Spark. That's because the new decks were stronger. But I think that Selesnya Tokens can compete again in the current meta. To do so it needs to adapt. What I did is adding red to the deck to get access to a few fitting cards. Following I'll list a selection of current meta decks and elucidate why Naya Tokens is a good deck choice right now. You can find my deck here:

Bant Scapeshift

Naya Tokens can be a very fast deck. It is able to quickly overwhelm slow decks and it's resilient to pointed removal. Bant Scapeshift slows opposing creature decks down by blocking with its few utility creatures (Arboreal Grazer, Elvish Rejuvenator, Hydroid Krasis), single target removal (Prison Realm), and Teferi, Time Raveler. Naya Tokens circumvents all of these speed bumps by goin wide. After sideboarding the color red allows access to Blood Sun which shuts down the main combo with Field of the Dead but also other utility lands like Blast Zone which currently is the only permanent answer to Blood Sun. You can also use Settle the Wreckage from the sideboard if you manage to play around Teferi, Time Raveler. But why didn't I add blue or black to Selesnya Tokens and use sideboard options like Deputy of Detention, Legion's End or Ashiok, Dream Renderer? The reason is that red offers the addition of Scampering Scorchers in the mainboard. This card slots into a token strategy perfectly because it helps going wide.

Orzhov Vampires

Orzhov Vampires wins by attacking with creatures. Naya Tokens can stifle this plan by presenting lots of blockers. Again the removal suite is targeted and small. To win the decks needs to go wide again and also grow the force bigger than the opposing vampire army. The removal of Naya Tokens is limited in the mainboard but works well against key vampires. But the sideboard provides lots of answers. Devout Decree, Prison Realm and Settle the Wreckage is plenty removal against Orzhov Vampires.

Bant Ramp

Naya Tokens is faster than Bant Ramp. It has a perfect counter against control magic in the form of Trostani Discordant. The sideboard is again great because we can use Veil of Summer to expand our answers to Entrancing Meldoy and Mass Manipulation.

Jund Dinosaurs

If Jund Dinosaurs manages to play threats with Trample we can get in trouble. Big creatures can be easily block by our tokens. Hanged Executioner is great removal against single creatures. Naya Tokens' sideboard is equipped with cards that can kill opposing dinosaurs easily.

New Cards

  • Woodland Champion: It's a cheap creature that packs a good tokens synergy. Naya Tokens is able to quickly deploy lots of tokens. That will in turn quickly grow Woodland Champion.
  • Hanged Executioner: I use this card as a substitute for Conclave Tribunal. Hanged Executioner is removal that helps the game plan by creating an additional token. It can't hit every permanent but for the mainboard it's enough to be able to deal with creatures.
  • Nightpack Ambuser: This card has already proven its power. Simic Flash evolves around this creature and uses it as a finisher. Naya Tokens can use this card to pressure control deck by playing threats in the opponent's end phase to make counter spells less valuable. Nightpack Ambusher is also a token engine which is perfect for a tokens deck.
  • Scampering Scorchers: I already talked about this card in the "Bant Scapeshift" paragraph.
  • Tolsimir, Friend to Wolves: Tolsimir already saw occasional play in Selesnya Tokens but wasn't great. I added it to Naya Tokens because I like the narrow synergy with Nightpack Ambusher.
  • Raise the Alarm: In the past Selesnya Tokens played Saproling Migration instead of Raise the Alarm. I think both options are equally good. Although I like Raise the Alarm better because it's an instant spell which I like against controlling strategies. Another option is to just play both cards.

Is Naya Tokens a Good Choice for a Tournament?

All of my arguments for Naya Tokens are hypothetical. I played a lot with this deck on Arena and was successful. But this is no representative data - especially because the Arena meta is different to tournaments (paper and online). So if you want a good and safe choice you should choose between the established meta decks. If you want to put in some effort and be brave start testing with Naya Tokens, improve it and maybe register it for a tournament.

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