Welcome to an Historic day! Historic Anthology 3 is coming to Arena in less than two weeks and along with it we’ll finally get a Historic ranked queue. Wizards has promised it’s going to be a big year for the Historic format, and they didn’t disappoint when they showed off Phyrexian Obliterator and Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger during the announcement.

Wizards of the Coast was kind enough to give us not one, but two free previews to share with our community. When I saw them, I was blown away by the kind of awesome cards that they’re planning to add to Historic. Not necessarily over-powered cards (since Standard will be adding enough of those, apparently) but really splashy finishers (like Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger) and build-around me cards, like these:

Akroma’s Memorial 

Mirari’s Wake

Like I said, pretty awesome cards!

It wouldn’t be a preview article without some deck lists, right? Luckily for you I put together two decks, one for Historic and one for Historic Brawl to try to make use of these two blasts from the past. First up we’ll take a look at a Bant control deck for those new ranked queues and then we’ll dive into a Historic Brawl deck!

Historic Wake

Creatures (3)
Fae of Wishes

Planeswalkers (9)
Calix, Destiny’s Hand
Narset, Parter of Veils
Teferi, Hero of Dominaria
Teferi, Time Raveler

Spells (24)
Dance of the Manse
Elspeth Conquers Death
Mirari’s Wake
Mystical Dispute
Omen of the Sea
Ominous Seas
Radical Idea
Shatter the Sky
Lands (24)
Blast Zone
Breeding Pool
Fabled Passage
Hallowed Fountain
Temple Garden
Temple of Enlightenment

Sideboard (10)
Ashiok, Dream Render
Dance of the Manse
Dream Trawler
Finale of Glory
Finale of Revelation
Grafdigger’s Cage
Heliod’s Intervention
March of the Multitudes
Mass Manipulation
Thassa’s Intervention

Since this is Historic, let’s talk about the history of Magic! This deck is directly inspired by Daniel Zink’s tournament-winning deck from 2003 Worlds, which you can find in this article Randy Buehler wrote a few years ago for a Standard throwback gauntlet event on Magic Online. That deck used cards like Wrath of God and Mana Leak to control the board, Deep Analysis and Compulsion as a draw engine, and closed out games with Mirari’s Wake and Decree of Justice. Zink’s deck also featured Cunning Wish, which at the time could retrieve cards that had been exiled during play.

I’ve tried to stay true to that design, though I haven’t been able to actually take this for a spin in any Historic queues to tune it up. The general idea is the same. Control the board with Shatter the Sky, Teferi, and Mystical Dispute, draw cards with Omen of the Sea and Radical Idea; and then close the game out with Mirari’s Wake and Dance of the Manse or fetch a win condition from your sideboard with Fae of Wishes.

For reading this far here’s a prize! The alternate card style versions of our new preview cards:

Let’s talk about Historic Brawl. While not (yet) an officially supported format by Wizards outside of a few Arena events, I think it’s easy to see that Brawl on Arena has become wildly popular and Historic Brawl is a natural extension of that format. It may give us something a little closer to Commander on Arena, which a lot of fans would be very excited for.

For our purposes, Mirari’s Wake and Akroma’s Memorial are two perfect cards for a Brawl deck, but since they’re relegated to Historic we’ll cross our fingers and hope that Historic Brawl is on the horizon. What I’ve brewed up is a Historic Brawl deck build on the Chulane, Teller of Tales pre-constructed Brawl deck. Chulane’s ability wants us to play a lot of creatures and specifically creatures with abilities that trigger when they enter the battlefield. It’s also a ramp deck so Wake and Memorial fit in really well.

I started from the stock list and first looked for cards to swap out for Wake and Memorial and settled on taking out Circuitous Route for Wake and Parhelion II for Akroma’s Memorial. Now let’s see what the Historic sets can offer our creature-driven ramp deck. We’re not looking to completely rebuild the deck, but we do want to find some splashy upgrades where we can.

Here’s a quick list of two cards from each Historic set that fits our theme (except for Historic Anthology 2 which didn’t really have any good fits):

Next I decided to take a look at the sets that have come out since Throne of Eldraine, and see if there were cards there that stood out as good replacements for this deck.

In addition to these 14 cards I wanted to try to find space for, I added Chainweb Aracnir, which felt like an upgrade over Kraul Harpooner. I did not spend time re-working the lands, though there a lot of obvious inclusions such as the dual lands from Magic Core Set 2019 (e.g. Sunpetal Grove) and the cycling lands from Historic Anthology 2).

Here’s the final list—though I’ve left the manabase out, you can have fun with that on your own. Hopefully Historic Brawl comes to Arena as a fully supported format so we can have some fun with it one day!

Historic Brawl Chulane

Commander (1)
Chulane, Teller of Tales

Creatures (21)
Beanstalk Giant
Chainweb Aracnir
District Guide
End-Raze Forerunners
Elvish Visionary
Fauna Shaman
Frilled Mystic
Ghalta, Primal Hunger
Goreclaw, Terror of Sisma
Gyre Engineer
Incubation Druid
Kogla, the Titan Ape
Leafkin Druid
Maraleaf Pixie
Meteor Golem
Paradise Druid
Shalai, Voice of Plenty
Spectral Sailor
Steelbane Hydra
Thassa, Deep Dwelling
Uro, Titan of Nature’s Wrath

Planeswalkers (2)
Vivien Reid
Vivien, Monsters’ Advocate

Spells (11)
Akroma’s Memorial
Arcane Signet
Entrancing Melody
Faerie Formation
Gilded Lotus
Growth Spiral
Incubation // Incongruity
Mirari’s Wake
Prison Realm
Run Away Together
Time Wipe

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