Goblin Ramp

Hello every, and welcome to the first, of what I hope is many, articles called the Jank Corner.  Those of you who know me will know that I have a tendency to play off the wall decks.  It’s a running joke among people at WNY Gaming, that I design decks that good players use to win tournaments, and I’ve been ahead of the meta game in standard multiple times.  You never know, you might just find the next GP winning deck here.


Today we are going to be looking at a deck that I was super excited to build after the release of M19.  It’s an aggressive mono red deck that just happens to have a potential combo finish to it.  Today we look at a deck I call Goblin Ramp.

Goblin Ramp

Lands (22)
18 Mountain
Scavenger Grounds
Field of Ruin
Detection Tower

Creatures (25)
Siege-Gang Commander
Goblin Trashmaster
Goblin Chainwhirler
Goblin Warchief
Wily Goblin
Goblin Instigator
Skirk Prospector

Instants and Sorceries (11)
Lightning Strike
Fight With Fire

Other Spells (2)
Chandra, Torch of Defiance
Sideboard (15)
Hazoret the Fervent
Squee, The Immortal
Fight With Fire
Goblin Chainwhirler
Dark-Dweller Oracle


At its heart, Goblin Ramp is an agro deck, despite only running one 1 drop.  But that 1 drop is very important to the deck. Skirk Prospector is our main ramp enabler.  It give us the best chance at dropping Chandra, Torch of Defiance on turn 3, or even Glorybringer on turn 3 after sideboard.  It also lets you use your two drops, to ramp into bigger, and better goblins.


With Skirk Prospector in play, our two drop goblins turn into amazing ramp spells. Goblin Instigator brings a goblin token with it, which can turn into extra mana the following turn.  Instigator can also be good late game, with a lord or two in play.  Our second two drop Goblin ramps even without a Skirk Prospector. Wily Goblin brings a treasure with it when it comes into play.  Dropping a Wily Goblin on turn two will let us play one of our 4 drops on turn 3, with is very important for the deck.


Goblin Warchief is one of the best cards in the deck.  The cost reduction lets us chain together multiple goblin spells, especially the ones that bring tokens with them.  The haste aspect is just as important.  Being able to put multiple goblins into play either by casting them, or by playing one that brings tokens, just becomes even more powerful when all of those cards have haste. Goblin Chainwhirler is our other 3 drop.  While we can all agree that Goblin Chinwhirler is an amazing card, it becomes better in our deck.  The synergy it has with the rest of our deck is ridiculous.  Unfortunately, the lack of generic mana in the cost means that it doesn’t get the cost reduction bonus from the Warchief, which is the only reason that it’s only a 2 of in the deck.


Goblin Trashmaster is our lord effect.  Casting it early, from either Skirk Prospector or Wily Goblin, gives it the speed we need for it to be an effective lord.  His ability isn’t insignificant in the deck either.  It has game again all the artifacts currently in the format.  Our other 4 drop is Chandra, Torch of Defiance.  Chandra is an amazing card in standard, but she becomes even better when you can cast her on turn 2, and then use her +1 for mana, to make another blocker.  In fact, unless we have no cards in hand, the +1 for mana is her most used mode in this deck.  And once we have no cards in hand, she’s almost always finding us something we can cast to advance our board state with her other +1.


Our 5 drop slot is filled by three copies of Siege-Gang Commander.  Casting it early, and giving it, and the goblin tokens it brings with it haste (from Goblin Warchief), can push large amounts of damage through, even if the opponent has blockers.  Being able to sacrifice goblins to shock any target is no small matter either.  Need to get just a few extra points of damage across to finish out the game? Siege-Gang Commander is your guy.


Our removal suite is where our combo finish begins to take shape.  To begin with, we get Lighting Strike.  Just a super versatile removal spell, that’s capable of going to the face if necessary.  Unfortunately, it doesn’t kill things like Steel Leaf Champion, which is where Fight With Fire comes in.  Late game, Fight With Fire becomes even better, because we can easily kick it with our with Chandra, Torch of Defiance adding mana, and being able to use Skirk Prospector to sacrifice goblins to add mana.  Our last removal spell doubles as our combo finisher. Banefire can take down larger creatures if need be but usually gets pointed directly at our opponent.  Just like Fight With Fire, extra mana from Chandra, Torch of Defiance and Skirk Prospector can let us Banfire for a huge number.  The uncounterable aspect does come into play, as most the time X will be over 5, and it will just end games.  My current best is X=15.


Our mana base is simple.  Because of the number of double red spells we run, we can’t use a bunch of nonbasic lands.  Therefore, we run 18 basic mountains.  We do get some utility lands however. Field of Ruin is great at stopping opponent’s nonbasics, and can help us find more mountains. Scavenger Grounds deals with graveyards well.  Out last utility land, Detection Tower, lets us finish the game with Banefire or Fight With Fire through things such as Shalai, Voice of Plenty, or lets us kill a creature through Blossoming Defense.


As for the Sideboard, Dark-Dweller Oracle lets us dig for more goblins by sacrificing tokens. There’s copy number 3 of Goblin Chainwhirler to deal with our opponents small threats.  A fourth copy of Fight With Fire to deal with things with toughness 4 or greater. Abrade gives us extra insurance against artifacts as well as acting as an extra removal spell. Squee, The Immortal is just excellent against control matchups. Hazoret the Fervent in matchups where we need a resilient threat.  And we’ve already discussed Glorybringer being able to come down on turn 3 and just wreck people.


And that’s it for the first issue of The Jank Corner.  I hope everyone enjoyed it, and I’ll be back next week with another instalment.  Good Luck, and Good Game.