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Choo-choo! Here come the kitties! Keep reading if you want a quick run down of playing with this cat-tastic deck!


The Game Plan

So what are we trying to do here? In broad strokes, suit up some buff kitties and turn them sideways. In more practical terms our deck is going to generally win through combat damage but we have packages to try and enable going tall or going wide depending on what we're up against. In essence this deck will play out differently depending on how powerful your match-ups are. In a less powerful meta this deck will pack a punch and should be pretty simple to pilot (get in with some agro damage, go wide, and cast Craterhoof Behemoth and you should have a decent time of it) where as in more powerful metas you will have to take advantage of some of the more toolbox aspects of the deck to react to threats/changes in the board state as needed.


Getting What You Need

Tutors! Tutoring can be one of the toughest decisions ever and this deck has a number of them which means a number of decision points. However, being that one of our weaknesses in this deck is raw card advantage, hopefully the extra card selection of tutors can mitigate it to some extent. In an attempt to help make the decision process a little simpler I'm going to list each tutor, some scenarios you might use it in, and what you might want to target in those scenarios.


1+2) Taj-Nar Swordsmith and Steelshaper's Gift

These three aren't going to be used for any one thing more than another, think of these as equipment wild cards

-Need more cards: Sword of Fire and Ice

-Need more mana: Sword of the Animist or Sword of Feast and Famine

-Need removal: Sword of Sinew and Steel or Sword of Fire and Ice

-Need to get things back from the graveyard: Sword of Light and Shadow

-Need to protect my things: Lightning Greaves , any of the swords with appropriate color protection, or Hammer of Nazahn

-Need to go wide/go on the offensive: Sword of Truth and Justice

3) Nazahn, Revered Bladesmith

Nazahn, Revered Bladesmith is here to get you the Hammer of Nazahn for obvious reasons. However always consider your options and remember the previous three tutors can also grab the hammer even if two of them can't put it into play and Nazahn can grab all the other things listed for your first three tutors if needed. Also unrelated to tutoring but don't forget her second ability.

4) Enlightened Tutor **

Now Enlightened Tutor is probably our most versatile tutor however, in general you won't be using it to grab equipment just because there are other tutors that can do that. That being said, remember that all the targets I have mentioned so far are also valid targets for Enlightened Tutor and sometimes they are going to be what you want to get. In general though Enlightened Tutor is the only tutor you have to get non-equipment artifacts and one of only two enchantment tutors so it is likely to be your only chance to tutor for an enchantment while you are more likely to run across another equipment tutor later.

-Need cards: Sylvan Library , The Great Henge *, or Sword of Fire and Ice

-Need mana: Sol Ring , Mirari's Wake , Smothering Tithe , Sword of the Animist , or Sword of Feast and Famine

-Need removal: Aura Shards , Song of the Dryads , Sword of Sinew and Steel , or Sword of Fire and Ice

-Need to go wide/go on the offensive: Cathars' Crusade , Dolmen Gate , Sword of Truth and Justice , or Felidar Retreat

-Need to get things back from the graveyard: Sword of Light and Shadow

-Need to protect my things: Lightning Greaves , any of the swords with appropriate color protection, Hammer of Nazahn or (in some situations) Dolmen Gate

5+6) Worldly Tutor ** or Eladamri's Call

These two creature tutors are your flexible creature tutors, use them to get finishers/protection/utility/etc. as needed.

-Need cards: Keeper of Fables or Alms Collector

-Need equipment instead of a creature: Taj-Nar Swordsmith or Nazahn, Revered Bladesmith

-Need removal: Qasali Slingers or Feline Sovereign

-Need to go wide/go on the offensive with many kitties: Brimaz, King of Oreskos , Nacatl War-Pride Kemba, Kha Regent , King of the Pride , Mirri, Weatherlight Duelist , Jazal Goldmane , Leonin Warleader , Pridemalkin (if you have a lot of +1/+1 counters already), or Regal Caracal

-Need to go tall/have a bunch of equipment already and need one kitty to stack it all on top of: Balan, Wandering Knight , Skyhunter Skirmisher , or Mirri, Cat Warrior

-Need to protect my things: Prowling Serpopard , Leonin Abunas , or Vigor

-Need to try and win/finish someone off: Craterhoof Behemoth , Raksha Golden Cub , or Nacatl War-Pride

7) Idyllic Tutor

A slightly less flexible but still important slot, Idyllic Tutor is one of only two tutors giving you access to a number of the more powerful cards in the deck. Just be aware that it is likely that you will only get to tutor for one of your enchantments over the course of a game.

-Need cards: Sylvan Library

-Need mana: Mirari's Wake , Smothering Tithe , or (if you have a lot of equipment in hand) Sigarda's Aid

-Need removal: Aura Shards or Song of the Dryads

-Need to go wide/go on the offensive: Cathars' Crusade or Felidar Retreat


NOTES

*Try to only cast The Great Henge if you have at least your commander or some other 5 power creature out, we really don't want to pay for than 4 mana for it ever unless we are really desperate or have absolutely nothing better to do with our turn/mana.

**Remember, Enlightened Tutor and Worldly Tutor (ie. your instant speed tutors that put the card on top of your deck) are generally best cast on the end step of the turn before yours. This allows you to leave mana up in case there is something else you might want to do instead, allows you to bluff and pretend you are holding removal of some kind which can sometimes help protect you, and it will give your opponents less information about what you have on their turns so it is more difficult for them to try and stop what you are trying to do.


Quick Tips

1) Remember, Arahbo's first ability targets so be aware if you have given something protection from white or green or shroud (cards in the deck that do this include Lightning Greaves , Sword of Feast and Famine , Sword of Truth and Justice , and Sword of Light and Shadow ). However, his second ability (which in general is more important for closing out games) does not target so you can still buff up your shrouded/protected kittens.

2) Rishkar's Expertise and Return of the Wildspeaker are really your only big "draw a bunch of cards at one time" spells so be careful when you use them. In general you will want to cast them after/during combat so that they take into account the +3/+3 from our commander when looking at the creatures power.

3) Don't forget that Heroic Intervention protects all your permanents (not just creatures). Use it to protect yourself as needed accordingly.

4) Don't forget your utility lands! Hall of Heliod's Generosity , Homeward Path , Maze of Ith , Strip Mine , Wasteland , Gavony Township and Yavimaya Hollow can all be incredibly useful in the right situations.

5) Don't forget you have access to your companion! It costs 3 generic mana to put them in your hand from the "companion zone" and then you can cast them for their casting cost as you normally would from your hand. Remember, if your companion dies it goes to the graveyard. It does not go back to the "companion zone" it started in.

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