Mardu Vehicles and the Revolt Begins!


Hello All, sorry that it has been a while since I last posted, but life is sometimes like that.  recently I have been working with a Mardu Vehicles list and have not done too bad with it overall and am hoping it can compete against the other big hitters of the current standard Meta game.  Also we have our first Aether Revolt spoilers and the jury is still out on them but they look at least interesting.

to start today’s article off here is my current Vehicles list:


Mardu Vehicles

Main: 38

4 Thraben Inspector

4 Toolcraft Exemplar

4 Inventors Apprentice

2 Pia Nalaar

4 Veteran Motorist

4 Scrapheap Scrounger

3 Gideon, Ally of Zendikar

3 Harnessed Lightning

3 Unlicensed Disintegration

4 Smuggler’s Copter

3 Cultivator’s Caravan

Lands: 22

4 Aether Hub

4 Concealed Courtyard

4 Inspiring Vantage

1 Needle Spires

3 Plains

6 Mountain



2 Archangel Avacyn

2 Declaration in Stone

2 Fragmentize

1 Gideon, Ally of Zendikar

1 Stasis Snare

2 Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet

2 Ruinous Path

2 Transgress the Mind

1 Kambal, Consul of Allocation


My list is slightly different then ones found online, but is pretty close overall.  I have tried to streamline the deck into the most consistent deck I could, while giving the deck some recursion and mid game power, while also having a slightly higher removal spell count then most lists I have been seeing.  Toolcraft Exemplar is always the best turn one play especially followed by an artifact on turn 2 which for this deck is fairly usual.  Smuggler’s Copter is obviously one of the more powerful cards in this deck giving the deck the ability to have an evasive creature that cycles cards in your hand giving an aggressive strategy the ability to dig through its deck.  Veteran Motorist is one of those cards that had me in awe since I saw it, I mean a 3/1 for 2 cmc that scry’s 2 when it enters the battlefield AND can pump my evasive vehicles?!  Probably the biggest reason to play white next to Gideon, Ally of Zendikar.  Gideon ends up being a fairly aggressive creature as a virtual 5/5 for 4 mana that can make creatures to go wide if need be or pump a well stabilized board to finish the game quickly, can’t really ask for more from a card in a deck like this.  The few black spells definitely give this deck an edge in control match ups and deal with difficult to kill creatures.  Scrapheap Scrounger has felt amazing in this deck being able to come back and crew a Vehicle even if my opponent was able to kill off all my other creatures, giving the deck the ability to put pressure on constantly more often then not.  Unlicensed Disintegration is just the perfect removal card for a deck like this that can outright kill just about any creature while also 95% of the time dealing damage to our opponent at the same time, giving the deck a small amount of reach as long as our opponent has a creature.  I have seen some lists not running Inventors Apprentices’ and Definitely feel like they need to be in this deck as they are the other one drop you wanna see if you don’t have a Toolcraft Exemplar, and there larger toughness can sometimes matter.  Pia Nalaar has done a lot of work for me as well by allowing me to get more damage though at times where I would have difficulty closing out the games otherwise, while also creating an evasive creature or adding damage and giving us a mana sink if we flood out.   My sideboard doesn’t feel optimal yet and is a work in progress as I find that I never bring in Transgress the Mind’s in this deck as it seems to slow me down too much, which I find that I win the games where I can keep pressure on constantly while trying not to over commit.  The removal in the sideboard is to simply deal with various other problems that the main deck removal can’t deal with all that well, Emrakul’s and BG Delirium with there recursion of Ishkanah or any other beat stick the deck wants to run being the more dominate creatures that tend to be an issue.  I recently played this exact list at an FNM event and went undefeated against a control dominate meta as I played against 2 Grixis control decks a Parharmonicon Deck, and a weird Delirium deck.  I only lost one game against one of the Grixis control decks which I had to Mull to 5 in the final round in which I turned around and dominated game three.  I am not sure how the match up is against BG Delirium as Ishkanah I think could be a big issue and Emrakul if cast is game breaking, but if I can power through the Ishkanah’s and win before my opponent can cast Emrakul I think I will do fine.

For those of you who haven’t seen the recent spoilers for Aether Revolt I suspect you will very shortly if your reading this. We have our new Ajani, being a 6 drop green white Planeswalker that wants to be in a deck full of permanents.  Here are Ajani’s abilities:

+2 Loyalty to  Reveal the top 3 cards of your Library, put all non Land permanents revealed this way into your hand and the rest on the bottom of your Library in any order.

-2 Loyalty Exile target creature, that creatures controller gains life equal to that creatures power.

-9 Loyalty to put 5 +1/+1 counters on each creature you control plus put 5 Loyalty counters on each other Planeswalker you control

So not bad, the ability to create card advantage with the plus ability, protects / acts as a removal spell for the -2 ability,and assuming you can maintain a decent board presence has a pretty decent ultimate ability.  I can see a Naya Walkers list forming in my head already along with a bunch of the Oaths which also can be drawn with Ajani’s plus ability.  Then we have 2 other cards that I think have potential, Yahenni’s Expertise and Trophy Mage both feel like they could be standard players in the future standard meta.  Yahenni’s Expertise is our new wrath effect that gives -3/-3 to all creatures for 2BB but has the upside of being able to cast for free a 3 cmc or less card from your hand, hard to say if this will be enough to include this over radiant flames in our current control Shells, unless of course we can cut red entirely.  The other plus to Yahenni’s Expertise is the fact that it gets around Selfless Spirit which is nice, so we shall have to see and play test with this card to see if it is good enough moving forward.  Trophy mage will see play if we have good enough artifiacts that cost 3, or enough that are good in various matchups where we only want to play one of in our sideboards or main decks.   Dynavolt Tower and Filigree Familiar are the cards that jump out at me at first that might want to see play with  our new Artifact tutoring beat stick, but we shall have to see what the rest of Aether Revolt has in store for us.


So I hope you have enjoyed this article and stay tuned for more on upcoming spoilers from Aether Revolt.  For those of you playing Vehicles lists I hope you find some of this helpful, and If I get the chance to play the Mardu Vehicles against more of the Meta I will be sure to let you all know how I make out.  I Also have my Brewing Cap on so expect to see some Aether Revolt cards being added into my current lists or spawning new ones of there own!

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