Arena – U/G Merfolk

Hi friends! This week we will be playing around with one of my favorite tribes that splashed its way back into Standard! I am of course talking about Merfolk. Merfolk decks have been around for a long time and typically operate as tribal aggro decks with anthem lords like Lord of Atlantis. The tribe is classically thought of as Mono-Blue but, along with Pirates and Dinosaurs, Ixalan brought us a fresh take by adding Green as a primary color for Merfolk.

The deck’s featured “lords” are Merfolk Mistbinder and Kumena, Tyrant of Orazca. Merfolk Mistbinder is a classic lord effect giving all other Merfolk +1 +1, however, Kumena, Tyrant of Orazca offers some unique abilities. It features three activated abilities that synergize with having a lot of Merfolk on the battlefield. This card allows you to get in for unblockable damage, draw additional cards, and add +1/+1 counters to your team. Pretty exciting stuff! The deck only features two non-creature spells currently which are Song of Freyalise and Deeproot Waters. Both these cards work together to get as many creatures on the board as quickly as possible to really utilize the abilities featured on Kumena. Additionally, Song of Freyalise can also act as a finisher by pumping up your attackers and making them indestructible for a turn.

Before we take a look at the list I wanted to mention that I tried to keep the deck on the low budget side but if you have access to a few more Rare wildcards I would suggest adding Breeding Pool to the mana base and trying to fit two more Deeproot Elite into the list. Lets go ahead and jump into some matches!

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CREATURES
4x Mist-Cloaked Herald
4x Kumena’s Speaker
4x Merfolk Trickster
4x Merfolk Mistbinder
4x Silvergill Adept
2x Deeproot Elite
4x Merfolk Branchwalker
4x Kumena, Tyrant of Orazca

SPELLS
4x Song of Freyalise
4x Deeproot Waters

LANDS
4x Hinterland Harbor
4x Unclaimed Territory
2x Simic Guildgate
6x Island
6x Forest

This deck was a ton of fun! I definitely saw some struggles with the Mana at times as a result of trying to keep rares on the lower end. I believe that we could actually go down to 21 lands once we add a full set of Breeding Pool. I am going to work to continue to tune this deck with the hopes that it can compete in ranked (best of three). The deck felt explosive and seemed to have an edge against midrange style decks. However, we didn’t feel well positioned against other aggressive strategies. I am wondering if the deck could move to become more midrange in nature by adding some more reactive spells. Unfortunately, It becomes difficult to utilize Song of Freyalise if we become too spell oriented.

The deck feels like in order to compete as an aggro deck it needs another fast lord effect. Additional copies of Deeproot Elite could certainly help fill this roll but I am constantly wishing that there was another traditional Merfolk lord in the format. What are your thoughts on the deck? Have you tested any cards not listed? and Do you feel the deck is better suited as an aggro deck or some sort of midrange combo strategy? Certainly let me know in the comments below or come visit me at twitch.tv/DCMDame! You’ll be seeing more Merfolk floating around my channel soon.

Happy Gaming,
Dave

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