HFX Games Series: Pioneer Recap

HFXGames Series Pioneer Recap

Our first HFXGames Series event brought out 10 Pioneer players to battle it out for cash, credit, and glory! We’ve entered a new era of Pioneer with the banning of Karn, the Great Creator and the unbanning of Smuggler’s Copter. We see a rise in different styles of aggro and midrange decks, no longer pushed back by the dominance of Mono-Green Devotion. As we will see with our Top 4 deck lists, the field was full of fast creature decks and black-based midrange decks.



Christopher Brackley (1st) –  Red-Black Midrange:

4 Thoughtseize                                                        Sideboard:

4 Fatal Push                                                             3 Duress

1 Torch the Tower                                                  2 Extinction Event

1 Bitter Triumph                                                     3 Unlicensed Hearse

1 Abrade                                                                  1 Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet

1 Heartless Act                                                       2 Kolaghan’s Command

4 Bloodtithe Harvester                                         1 Hidetsugu Consumes All // Vessel of the All-Consuming

2 Kroxa, Titan of Death’s Hunger                        1 Go Blank

3 Reckoner Bankbuster                                         1 Abrade

4 Bonecrusher Giant                                             1 Eliminate

2 Graveyard Trespasser                                        

4 Fable of the Mirror-Breaker

2 Sheoldred, the Apocalypse

2 Invoke Despair

4 Blackcleave Cliffs

1 Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth

1 Takenuma, Abandoned Mire

2 Castle Locthwain

3 Swamp

1 Den of the Bugbear

1 Sokenzan, Crucible of Defiance

4 Blightstep Pathway // Searstep Pathway

2 Hive of the Eye Tyrant

2 Haunted Ridge

4 Blood Crypt



Travis Benedict (2nd) – Mono Red Aggro:

4 Monastery Swiftspear                                                      Sideboard:              

4 Soul-Scar Mage                                                                    

4 Kumano Faces Kakkazan // Etching of Kumano          1 Chandra, Torch of Defiance

4 Play with Fire                                                                    2 Unlicensed Hearse

2 Monstrous Rage                                                               3 Roiling Vortex

2 Wild Slash                                                                          3 Roast

4 Eidolon of the Great Revel                                              1 End the Festivities

2 Chandra, Dressed to Kill                                                  2 Bonecrusher Giant

4 Rampaging Ferocidon                                                      3 Goblin Chainwhirler

3 Light Up the Stage

4 Ojer Axonil, Deepest Might // Temple of Power

16 Mountain

4 Ramunap Ruins

2 Den of the Bugbear

1 Sokenzan, Crucible of Defiance


Phil Samms (3rd-4th) – RW Convoke:

4 Ornithopter                                                       Sideboard:

1 Giant Killer                                                         4 Torch the Tower

4 Warden of the Inner Sky                                 1 Jegantha, the Well-Spring

4 Voldaren Epicure                                              1 Thalia, Guardian of Thraben

4 Thraben Inspector                                            3 Get Lost

4 Gleeful Demolition                                           3 Containment Priest

3 Thalia, Guardian of Thraben                           3 Reidane, God of the Worthy // Valkmira, Protector’s Shield

4 Resolute Reinforcements

3 Imodane’s Recruiter

4 Knight-Errant of Eos

4 Venerated Loxodon

4 Battlefield Forge

2 Den of the Bugbear

1 Mountain

4 Inspiring Vantage

1 Eiganjo, Seat of the Empire

3 Needleverge Pathway // Pillarverge Pathway

2 Shefet Dunes

4 Sacred Foundry


Brad Perry (3rd-4th) – BW Control

4 Thoughtseize                                                         Sideboard:

4 Fatal Push                                                              2 Damping Sphere

1 March of Otherworldly Light                             4 Duress

3 March of Wretched Sorrow                               2 Go Blank

2 Vanishing Verse                                                    4 Leyline of the Void

3 Get Lost                                                                 3 Necromentia

1 White Sun’s Twilight

2 Path of Peril

4 Phyrexian Arena

3 Sheoldred, the Apocalypse

3 The Wandering Emperor

2 Settle the Wreckage

2 Sunfall

1 Kaya, Intangible Slayer

2 Brightclimb Pathway // Grimclimb Pathway

1 Castle Locthwain

1 Eiganjo, Seat of the Empire

4 Godless Shrine

1 Hive of the Eye Tyrant

2 Mirrex

1 Plains

2 Shambling Vent

4 Shattered Sanctum

3 Swamp

1 Takenuma, Abandoned Mire

3 Temple of Silence


In the end, Christopher Brackley’s RB Midrange was able to defeat the over-the-top style BW Control deck and then took on the fast-paced Mono Red deck in the finals, securing a cash prize! I had the chance to ask Chris why he chose the older style of RB Midrange with Reckoner Bankbuster over the new, low to the ground version with Smuggler’s Copter and Inti, Seneschal of the Sun. Here’s what he had to say about his list:


“I think that Inti is too vulnerable as a 2/2 and reliant on other cards to be good. Copter’s Crew 1 and flying abilities are the biggest draws for the card, but the only creatures that can’t crew 3 for Bankbuster are flipped Fable and the Goblin Token. The extra +1/+1 and card advantage are preferable in a midrange deck. Inti is very hard to get card advantage from in a deck with such a wide range of CMC’s. The best you’re going to get is an extra land drop or Thoughtseize early, and if not, it’s just a card for a +1/+1 counter. Invoke Despair was a meta call, and I would have put Archfiend of the Dross in regularly.”


Want to see your deck list posted? Join us on February 17th where we will be hosting our first Regional Championship Qualifier for Round 6! The format will be Standard and will feed into RC Montreal in early May.







Written By: Travis Benedict
Pro Tour Competitor, Cat Lover

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