Hello and welcome back to a very overdue return to content on the GreenSunsZenith! I’ll be honest, it’s been tough over the past few months to find a balance between life, streaming and written content.
In saying that…what better way to return than with a new edition of Inside the Maverick – a series where I interview prominent members of the Legacy Maverick community.
A huge shout out & thank you to my Patrons – your support has been fantastic and I appreciate each of you. I’m really happy to have my drive back, return to writing and spread the GWx gospel in 2023.
Want to join the ‘Zenith?
Due to the nature of Maverick and most 75s being different in some niche way, I find it very rewarding to listen to other pilots and where they’ve found success. Maverick is a highly tuneable archetype, meaning you can build the deck to combat any specific metagame. Tutor engines such as Green Sun’s Zenith and Knight of the Reliquary allow you to achieve this, giving you access to silver bullets which can stall or even take down opposing strategies.
Harry(1232) has been doing just that, taking a list, tweaking it over the course of a few months and being rewarded with some great results. The peak of that is below, finishing 9th in a Legacy Challenge with Naya Saga Maverick at the end of last year.
Harry1232’s MTGO Performances since July 2022
I reached out to Harry and they were happy to dive a little deeper into where they see Maverick positioned at the moment and how to best fight the current Legacy metagame.
Hey Harry, thanks for joining me today. How’d you first get into magic?
I first started playing Magic after a couple of friends got me into it during Khans block. I mostly just played kitchen table, draft and commander for a few years. When Arena came out was when I really got into constructed magic.
When did you get into Legacy? What decks did you find interesting?
I started playing Legacy a lot this summer after watching some Strassdaddy streams. His Punishing Saga deck looked very interesting to me and got me to try out the legacy format. Since then I’ve been tweaking that list as well as trying out other Maverick strategies.
What appealed to you about Maverick?
I love the toolbox aspect of the maverick strategy. Green Sun’s Zenith can find a number of green creatures including Knight of the Reliquary, which can fetch a number of utility lands including Urza’s Saga, which can fetch silver bullet 0-1 CMC artifacts. There are so many different choices to make in this deck and it feels like it has an answer to almost every situation.
You’ve been doing really well with a variety of Maverick archetypes. How do you feel about each of them?
The current legacy metagame is very creature-based with Initiative and Delver as the top decks and Painter, Elves and Breakfast right behind them. This means that creature removal is very important right now and as far as colour combinations for Maverick, Abzan has the best removal.
Swords to Plowshares and Snuff Out are the two best removal spells in legacy at the moment and this deck gets to play both of them. Grist also means that in an Abzan deck GSZ can be a removal spell (provided you have a creature you’re willing to sac) which is something that other color combinations of Maverick are really missing (at least until Mawloc comes to MTGO)
I think this is the best Maverick deck for MTGO until we get access to Mawloc.
Punishing / Punishing Saga:
Sadly, I think the Mono-White Initiative deck has sped up the format to the point where Punishing Fire is just too slow right now. A two mana shock is pretty embarrassing when your opponent is playing a 3/3 on turn one growing to a 5/5 the following turn.
Minsc & Boo, Timeless Heroes is the other big reason to play red in Maverick. This card is definitely very powerful but I have found it also to be slow in this metagame. Games against initiative are usually already decided by the time we get to 4 mana and it is very hard to get into play vs Delver with Wastelands, Daze, FoW and Bolts on mana dorks.
I think this deck is too slow for the current metagame, but I expect that to change once we get Mawloc. From the few games that I’ve got to play with Mawloc in paper, I have been very impressed. For just two mana or off a GSZ it can eat creatures like Delver of Secrets, Dragon’s Rage Channeler, Mother of Runes, Goblin welder, etc.
When cast for more mana it not only eats opposing creatures but is a huge creature as well. I think this will greatly improve creature matchups but also help against combo and control since this will take some main deck removal slots but not be a dead card when the opponent has no creatures in play.
Your version with White Plume:
I think the deck I was running a few weeks ago with White Plume Adventurers was really good at the time but has gotten worse as the initiative decks have adapted.
The deck was trying to go under the initiative with lots of cheap removal and small creatures including Mother of Runes to give protection from white. This strategy has gotten a lot worse since Initiative has started playing main deck Walking Ballista and Swords to Plowshares.
This deck was also not great against Delver since it was very easy for them to take the initiative with flying creatures. Come post-board (after cutting WPAs) the deck had a hard time keeping up with the card advantage of Expressive Iteration.
How are you currently attacking the initiative saturated metagame online?
This is where I am at with the deck right now.
I have swapped the WPAs for Urza’s Sagas. Saga plays a similar role to WPA as a threat/card advantage but also makes the mana smoother in regards to mana flood/screw. This is huge against Delver as it makes getting wasted out of the game less likely and I get to keep in my card advantage/threat piece in post-board to keep up with Expressive Iteration.
Stoneforge Mystic into Kaldra has been very effective at fighting the W Initiative decks. Finding Jitte is also spectacular against decks like Elves, D&T, Cephalid Breakfast.
3 main deck Endurance makes the Delver matchup a lot easier while also providing hate against decks, like Oops, Reanimator, Doomsday.
Do you have any thoughts on where Maverick pilots should focus on in 2023? Any advice for players wanting to pick up Maverick in 2023?
Once it is released online, I think Mawloc is going to be a game changer. Going forward I expect Maverick to be a Naya deck with 3-4 Mawlocs and I think we should be figuring out the best shell to support them.
Where can people find you if they want to reach out?
I am pretty active on the Maverick Discord, username @Harry1232#0391
A huge thank you to Harry for coming on the Zenith and sharing some of his insights into Legacy Maverick’s position in the Legacy metgame.
If you’d like to check out past editions of Understanding the Maverick, you can find them below!
Understanding the Maverick: RascalYote
Understanding the Maverick: Achillies27
Understanding the Maverick: Mark Strassman
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Make sure to join the community via the Zenith Discord!
Until next time, play well, play fair.
One thought on “Understanding the Maverick: Harry1232”
It’s been a blast to watch Harry’s growth in the competitive scenario.
What a fantastic addition to the Maverick Team!
Tks for the interview, guys!