espite covering a lot of Legacy over the past few months, one thing we have never done is visit with the nastiest bunch in the format. From the time Legacy was created until the present, only a few decks have managed to survive the entire time. Merfolk has always existed in some form, with plenty of highs and lows along the way. But sitting right alongside the blue-man group has always been Goblins. Sure, they took a hit with the printing of Mental Misstep, but now that that issue is gone, we have seen that it can be competitive once again. Max Tietze agreed with that thinking when he picked up the deck for a recent Legacy Open.
The game plan of Goblins comes in three main steps for a typical game. The first involves a turn-one play that will dictate the tempo of the game. With an Æther Vial to start things off, you gain protection from counters and twice the mana production you are used to, allowing you to win any kind of game. With a turn-one Goblin Lackey, though, your plan becomes to kill the opponent through a raw burst of speed and mana acceleration. If those one-drops do not stick, which is common, the deck transitions into its grindy mode.
At that point, it looks to just play efficient Goblins while locking up the opponent's mana whenever possible through Wasteland and Rishadan Port. Gempalm Incinerators are cycled and Goblin Piledrivers attack. Once the game has dragged on long enough, the game switches to one all about Goblin Ringleader. Ringleader supplies the deck with so much gas that it is able to keep up with decks that want to go over the top. If the Ringleaders are not available, or they turn up bad results, Goblins can run out of steam quickly. This is a deck I expect to be in the format for as long as it remains, so give it a shot!
Max Tietze's Goblins
Legacy – Winner, StarCityGames Open, Atlanta