There’s no better time to play this deck than now, both on Paper and on MTG Arena. Bant Ramp is just so seriously powerful right now and it’s in a good place.
Lands, Flying Squid, and Angels
Bant Ramp is just one of those decks that you just don’t want to go against simply because it can either kill you fast or grind you out.
Bant Ramp, much like Gruul Midrange, has varying decklists but they’ll all run on the same core that makes the deck just really awesome to play with (and horrible to play against).
The Decklist – Bant Ramp by Kubota Yuuhi
5-0 - Let’s 5 Standard - Hareruya
If you noticed, I picked out a Japanese decklist from Hareruya. The reason being is that Japanese players always have different approaches to deckbuilding.
The list I picked out comes from their Let’s 5 Standard tournament, which is one of Hareruya’s Standard events held weekly.
Okay, now it’s time to pop the hood and check out the engine that runs this deck.
The Ramp Cards
In a 24-creature deck, half of their creatures are mana dorks. The deck runs playsets of Incubation Druid, Llanowar Elves, and Paradise Druid.
And for a good reason. You want to drop out both your threats and defensive cards as early as turn 4. Paradise Druid and Incubation Druid are both good for fixing your colors, so there’s hardly any issue at all with mana.
As early as turn 3, you start to churn out your threats or should give you enough space to set up for the long game.
Jadelight Ranger is too good of a card that allows you to filter your library thanks to its Explore ability. It can get as big as 4/3 with unmatched utility compared to most 3-drop creatures in Standard right now.
Shalai, Voice of Plenty is a 3/4 flyer and I consider this more of a threat than anything else simply because it protects you, your creatures, and your planeswalkers by giving Hexproof.
Its pump ability is no laughing matter either.
And of course, we have Nissa, Who Shakes the World, and I think she does her best in this deck more than any other deck.
Dropping this at turn 3 (with the help of your dorks) usually just means game over because its +1 ability untaps a land and turns it into a 3/3 creature with Vigilance and Haste.
In case you’re not playing at the ideal pace, there are cards on this deck that will help protect you and your creatures long enough to get you one step closer to achieving your goals.
Prison Realm is a 3-drop removal that’s similar to Ixalan’s Binding and Baffling End, except that it captures planeswalkers too.
Teferi, Time Raveler, or Mini-Teferi, prevents players from casting at Instant speed, so decks like Mono-Red Aggro are slowed down significantly.
And then we have Frilled Mystic, the deck’s only form of counter spell in the mainboard. For 4-mana, it’s quite handy for players who’re about to drop their bombs or removals and it can give you a blocker at Instant speed.
Then there’s Trostani Discordant, a 5-drop creature that gives you 2 1/1 White Soldiers with Lifelink and has an anthem ability that gives all of your creatures +1/+1.
Its last ability also prevents cards such as Entrancing Melody from working.
Then lastly, we have The Immortal Sun that simply prevents PW’s from using their loyalty abilities and gives you an additional card to draw. This puts a hamper on threatening PW’s such as Nicol Bolas, the Arisen, and Nicol Bolas, Dragon God.
And three of these cards are easily available as early as turn 2.
Late Game Threats (Win Conditions)
Arguably, Hydroid Krasis can also be considered as either an early threat or a defensive card for Bant. It’s a X/X flyer with trample that makes you gain life and draws out cards once it enters the battlefield.
The later the game gets, the better this card becomes. That’s why I just listed this as your win condition because there’s just only a handful of cards that can go against this beast.
Finale of Glory just floods your board with tokens, but at 12-mana, you drop an additional X number of 4/4 Angels on top of the X number of 2/2 White Soldiers.
So that puts you at about 20 creatures in total for the price of 12-mana.
I mean, that’s basically game over from that point on.
Just because it’s a straight-forward deck doesn’t mean that you can just run this on autopilot. You have to know when to set-up your plays and when to drop your cards.
One could argue that the way this deck plays would be to go against how the opponent is playing. So if you’re playing against an Aggro deck, you’re more likely to grind them out.
Whereas if you’re playing against Control decks, you’re going to want to play at a faster rate.
Here are some quick notes on how you can play around with this deck to maximize its potential:
- You can use Nissa’s ability to untap a land to ramp up towards certain cards. The 3/3 body is merely a bonus.
- You can always drop Hydroid Krasis for a quick lifegain and draw advantage as soon as you have 4-mana available.
- When in doubt, grind it out.
Bant Ramp looks to only get stronger by the time Core 2020 comes out, and I think it’s one of the decks to beat in any Standard event.
You can check out Channel Fireball’s Huey Jensen’s video on how he takes this deck out for a spin:
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