Happy Turkey Day to all those in the United States who celebrate! To commemorate this day of questionable decisions, both in history and on the third helping of stuffing, we at Bleeding Cool have written up another Oathbreaker deck tech for Magic: The Gathering. Oathbreaker, for those just beginning to read Bleeding Cool's deck techs on the format, is a style of play originated by the WeirdCards Charitable Club (it is fitting that a charity be mentioned today, in the spirit of giving and of giving thanks!). WeirdCards is also responsible for the MagiKids program, which is responsible for providing underprivileged children with kits of unused Magic card donations so that they might be able to play the game as well.
So, who is the Oathbreaker that we think represents Thanksgiving Day so highly to us? Well, from our perspective that's Oko, Thief of Crowns. This may have to do with his ability to generate Food tokens. This may also have to do with the fact that now he's banned from Standard, where he'd been a format-warping stand-out for all of a month or two before the announcement.
But speaking in terms of Oathbreaker playability, he's as good as any Planeswalker for the most part. I recently got a chance to use the deck I'll be detailing in this article against a Tibalt, the Fiend-Blooded deck similar to the one I wrote about when I started this segment (alongside a Nissa, Who Shakes The World build), and while it did well, Tibalt ultimately managed to burn me down. How delightfully devilish! But my point stands; in Oathbreaker, Oko isn't broke…o.
Keeping in the spirit of our Food token subtheme (as this deck will revolve as a Simic, or Blue-Green, Aggro deck), our Signature Spell will be Giant Opportunity!
As I mentioned above, the deck will be a Simic Aggro build. There will be a special focus on cards found in the Throne of Eldraine expansion set since it just felt right to include them with Oko. There are Adventure synergies, Food synergies, and a fair amount of copying and changing creatures into other things. After all, this is an Oko deck.
Feasting Troll King – While he's a bit pricey to cast from your hand, Feasting Troll King is a decent generator of Food tokens when you do so. In a pinch, you can sacrifice Food to recur him as well – and, ideally, we aim to make a lot of Food in the deck.
Mimic Vat – Another artifact in our arsenal, Mimic Vat allows us to make ephemeral copies of once-dead creatures. But imagine this: What if your opponent has killed your copy of Oko, the Trickster? Put it under the Vat for a plethora of his abilities in action! Make creatures significantly larger, or copy a creature! The possibilities with Mimic Vat prove substantial.
Sorcerous Spyglass – This is a silver bullet in a multitude of one-on-one Oathbreaker matches. Do you want to be able to completely shut down Ashiok, Dream Render with Exhume as Signature Spell, or maybe even Liliana, the Last Hope, featuring The Elderspell? Neutralize the opposing oathbreakers with Sorcerous Spyglass, to ensure they can't exile everyone else's grave, or get that oh-so needed emblem.
Scale Up – This sorcery is a fun and surprisingly-effective one. You have many smaller creatures in this deck, so Overloading this spell will often allow you to get a good chunk of damage onto your opponents.
Kenrith's Transformation – What kind of Oko Thief of Crowns deck would this be without the very thing that made him infamous in the storyline? If you've exhausted Oko's options for the turn, and maybe wanted to still turn something into an Elk, then use this to do so, and cantrip in the process!
String of Disappearances – I was thinking of using this simply to save creatures, but this card can also enable additional Adventure casts, which is rather strong if you are looking to make a Food token into a 4/4, create a Human token from Lovestruck Beast to enable its attacks, or bounce a problematic opposing permanent. Plus, if you do this to your own creatures and have the mana, you can affect an opponent's creature as well.
No matter your stance on the debate of whether or not Oko is broken, this deck performs quite well in this format. I have tested it against a few different decks in a few different situations. In one-on-one, it shines. In multiplayer, it satisfies. And while it makes perfect sense that Oko is banned in Standard Magic play (and even in Brawl!), Oko's niche is really within Oathbreaker.
What do you think? Is Oko too strong for the one true Planeswalker-centric format? Is this deck weaker than you'd prefer, by contrast? Let us know! And enjoy the pecan pie.