RG Ponza is an archetype that focuses around ramp and land destruction in the early game in order to make high power plays like Inferno Titan happen as quickly as turn four. This list in particular is based off the one made by SaffronOlive at MTGGoldfish with a some change made to help consistency, however there are other ways to build the deck, and it can certainly be budget further.

This build in particular focuses around the card Goblin Dark-Dwellers and the incredible synergy it has with our deck, in order to get the biggest bang for your buck.

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Since we are a budget deck, our manabase isn't that complicated:

Forest and Mountain: The basics

Cinder Glade: A budget dual that works with our Arbor Elf and Utopia Sprawl (Can also be fetched with Mwonvuli Acid-Moss)(Evolving Wilds could be used to make the deck further budget.)

Tormod's Crypt: The cheapest gravehate in the format, Loaming Shaman is another possibility if you want a beater.

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Birds of Paradise: The second best mana dork ever printed (If were talking about value) this card allows us to make turn 2 plays like Molten Rain happen with a single mountain in play.

Utopia Sprawl: This card allows us to get ahead on mana without using a creature mana dork that could get hit by lightning bolt. It also has a huge synergy with Arbor Elf.

Arbor Elf: A "mana dork" that gives us the full value of Utopia Sprawl, with it we can generate 4-5 mana as quickly as turns 3-4, and makes our deck much more dangerous to our opponent.

Pithing Needle: Cards like Ugin, the Spirit Dragon, and Karn Liberated can be very hard to deal with, needle makes them a lot less scary. (Phyrexian Revoker can also be used here if you want a beater with your hate.)

Dismember: Run as a one-of to fend off decks like Infect, dismember will always be a one drop that comes at the price of 4 life.

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Ancient Grudge : Hate for decks like Lantern Control that run Ensnaring Bridge, the really nice part is that it's got flashback.

Feed the Clan : With decks like burn running around in the format, it's important to have lifegain, feed the clan works well with the big creatures we play, and can be recurred with Goblin Dark-Dwellers if we need it.

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Molten Rain & Stone Rain: These cards are what makes Ponza what it is, these land destruction cards are meant to come down as soon as turn 2 and wreck havoc on your opponent's gameplan. (They can also be reccurred by Goblin Dark-Dwellers for huge value.

Beast Within: Beast Within serves as all-purpose removal, it can get rid of anything from Death's Shadow to Inkmoth Nexus, and we play bigger things then 3/3 Beasts.

Anger of the Gods: While it may kill our manadorks, anger gives us the edge to fight decks like Dredge and Affinity.

Krosan Grip: Gets rid of any artifact or enchantment. Period.

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Avalanche Riders: Land destruction on a stick, Avalanche riders allows for turn 3-4 land destruction with some bonus damage attached.

Thrun, the Last Troll: There are plenty of blue decks running around in the format that would love to stop what we are doing, Thrun is a huge middle finger to all control decks as long as you have mana available.

Mwonvuli Acid-Moss: Land destruction with added ramp, the only reason we don't play more is because it can't be recurred by Dark Dwellers.

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Acidic Slime: The top-curve of our land destruction, ooze can also get rid of anything that is being annoying, and has bonus deathtouch to go with it.

Thragtusk: A fatty that gives us life and a creature should it pass away on our board, casting Thragtusk will always be a good play.

Goblin Dark-Dwellers : The build around piece for this deck, Dark Dwellers can recur land destruction cards like Stone Rain, lifegain like Feed the Clan , sweepers like Anger of the Gods, Noncreature removal with Krosan Grip, and a number of other cards in our boards. It also comes along with Menace, an ability that decks like Jund can have a hard time getting around.

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Inferno Titan: Typically a turn 4-5 play, Titan is the top curve of this deck, as he comes with an added Arc Lightning , and does this whenever you attack, allowing you to swing for effectively 9 every turn. Titan is well known to end the game very quickly.

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When looking to unbudgetize this build, it's important to understand that this budget build uses Goblin Dark-Dwellers , while many other ponza builds do not, and instead use options below instead.

Wooded Foothills & Stomping Ground: Unbudgetizing the manabase with fetches and shocks will improve your consistency dramatically, that way you don't have to mulligan just because you only have mountains in hand.

Blood Moon: The biggest upgrade for competitive play, Blood Moon can allow you to get free wins against decks like Jund and Tron, and gives you an edge against many of the popular decks in the format. If put in this build I'd likely run it over Molten Rain since the double red mana cost can get us into sticky situations sometimes.

Chandra, Torch of Defiance & Chandra, Flamecaller : Both Chandras can act as finishers by themselves, with Torch in particular being able to get wins over cards like Ensnaring Bridge in the mainboard.

Bonfire of the Damned: Bonfire allows us to get random wins since we ramp so much in this deck.

Primal Command: Primal Command can act as a toolbox piece for tutors, getting rid of cards, etc.

Stormbreath Dragon: Stormbreath is very good against white decks and can win games in a pinch since it's got haste to boot.

Madcap Experiment & Platinum Emperion : Some ponza decks run this two card combo to get around aggro and combo decks that would normally kill them.

Sudden Shock: Instantly kills an infect creature.

Fracturing Gust: An easy way to remove a board of lantern control or affinity cards.

Kitchen Finks: Awesome reccurring lifegain.

Boil: A way to hose the manabase of some control builds.

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If you liked this deck, please give upvotes, and leave comments or suggestions, and if you want more budget builds and brews, feel free to check me out at Sargeras.
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Date added 1 year
Last updated 1 year

This deck is Modern legal.

Cards 60
Avg. CMC 3.32
Tokens 3/3 Beast
Folders Competitive Modern, Decks to Playtest!!, <$100, Modern inspiration, Decks I want, red die, Modern - Ponza, Budget Modern, Budget, Budget, See all 13
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Revision 3 See all

1 year ago)

-2 Natural State side
+2 Krosan Grip side