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I recently played Ghost of Tsushima for the first time, and after the majestic grandeur of the game set in I knew I wanted to build something of the same flavor. Yes, Samurai and Ninjas are different blah blah blah, you know what I mean. I threw this together to capitalize on the neat aspects of ninja trickery. Enjoy!


Nothing too crazy here. We derive the bulk of our mana from basic islands, and to supplement this we run two different support lands.

Halimar Depths lets us stack the deck in our favor, setting up subsequent turns.

Skyline Cascade helps slow the early game down if we’re getting hammered by weenie or aggro decks.


Any opponent worth their salt will spot our basic game plan a mile away. It’s imperative that we be able to protect our unblockable creatures, as they’ll be sitting at the top of the Empire’s Most Wanted list. We run a plethora of spells ranging from countermagic to tempo to augmentation, all in the name of protecting and bolstering our admittedly wimpy creatures.

Counterspell is the best of the best, and in mono is an automatic inclusion. Fizzle anything remotely threatening and set yourself up for victory.

Mana Leak covers more potential concerns than Spell Pierce and supersedes it here.

Memory Lapse is a grand old spell from bygone days of yore. Reduce the opponent to tears by butchering the tempo of their game. Odds are good we’ll be able to nimbly sidestep it again the following turn anyway.

Vapor Snag doesn’t hit Enchantments, Lands or other permanents, but that’s what a Sideboard is for. We’re really only looking to keep the battlefield relatively clear and remove creatures with particularly formidable abilities, and the bonus 1 point ping is helpful.

Smoke Shroud proved more useful than it looked at first glance. Our Ninjas will be doing most of the heavy lifting as we plod along to victory, but it’s no secret they aren’t very powerful. There are an endless supply of +X/+X spells we could choose from, but Smoke Shroud has value far beyond its initial casting…

Strike me down, and I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine Show


The main strategy is simple and effective. We want unblockable creatures on the battlefield and attacking, at which point we can exchange them in a puff of smoke for our ninjas waiting in the wings.

Triton Shorestalker and Slither Blade are a lot like C-3PO and R2-D2. They’re small, weak and seemingly inconsequential, and yet when the bantha fodder hits the fan they save the day. About as defenseless as C-3PO, they will be completely reliant on support magic to avoid removal. Both are lightning rods and neither is boltproof, so expect the hate.

If we do manage to deflect any vitriol hurled their way, once they are declared as attackers and are subsequently not blocked it’s time to strike from the shadows.

Mistblade Shinobi will likely be the easiest ninja to get into play, costing a lone . His ninjutsu ability will help tremendously in the early stages of the game, bouncing one of the opponent’s creatures back to their hand and turning back the clock on their boardstate, leaving them likely a turn behind. Eats tokens for breakfast too!

Ninja of the Deep Hours (old school card frame, of course) is probably our MVP. Between the various bounce spells and effects slowing the opponent down and abilities like this one putting more cards into our own hand, the potential is here to quickly turn the tide in our favor. At 2/2 he doesn’t hit very hard, but we’re in this for the long haul—and a bit of Ninja-nuity (Ninja+ingenuity…Boo!) in the form of Smoke Shroud does add up over time. It’s all about control, tempo and a gradual wearing down of our opponent’s defenses.

Moonsnare Specialist is another tempo adjuster, returning a creature of our choice to its owner’s hand. Worthy of note is that this potentially includes our own creature, which opens up all sorts of bouncing ninja shenanigans. Light on cards? Set up another draw by returning Ninja of the Deep Hours to our hand. Need a little extra oomph to finish off the opponent? Bounce whichever of our ninjas Smoke Shroud is enchanting. The aura spell will go straight to the graveyard and when the bounced ninja is ninjutsu’d in again, you may reattach it free of cost.

•Cast Slither Blade and Triton Shorestalker to have guaranteed ninjutsu targets.

•Protect the unblockable creatures (or ninjas thereafter) with countermagic, bounce or tempo spells.

•Abuse the ninjutsu capabilities of our ninjas, appearing out of nowhere and slashing from the shadows, vanishing into the smoke, only to strike again.


Built to handle the more tangible threats to our specific playstyle found in the format, namely faster aggro decks with ultra low mana curves and numerous burn spells: i.e. mono red burn decks and to a lesser extent little white weenies.

Blue Elemental Blast cuts through like a high powered water jet.

Hydroblast See Above.

Spell Pierce is a classic multitasker.

Boomerang can target any permanent, helpful when facing down Tron, or Artifact or Enchantment heavy decks.

”But there is nothing carefully concealed that will not be revealed, and secret that will not become known.”


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24% Casual

76% Competitive

Top Ranked
  • Achieved #4 position overall 2 days ago
  • Achieved #2 position in Pauper 4 days ago
Date added 1 week
Last updated 1 week

This deck is Pauper legal.

Cards 60
Avg. CMC 2.20
Folders Pauper, Epic Decks
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Revision 2 See all

1 week ago)

+3 Boomerang side
+1 Brainstorm maybe
-3 Eye of Nowhere side
+2 Island main
-2 Skyline Cascade main