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The best Magic: The Gathering Standard decks in 2024

Keeping things in rotation.

Image credit: Wizards of the Coast/stock.adobe.com/DAndreev

The best Standard decks in Magic: The Gathering right now are pretty nicely spread across a range of colours and strategies. That’s always good news for the popular MTG format, and means we’re nicely set until its next major rotation.

Best MTG Standard decks - May 2024

If you’re getting into the game for the first time, finding your way in a constructed format can be daunting. To help you along, we’ve made a list of the top MTG decks in Standard at the moment with a little explainer about each of them.

Diving into MTG for the first time? Pick up the standard rules here!Watch on YouTube

While Standard does change fairly regularly, we’ve only just seen the launch of Outlaws of Thunder Junction and we’re still just under three months away from Bloomburrow and the next rotation, so this is the most stable the format tends to be. The specific meta in your area might be different, but the best Standard decks in MTG should all perform well nevertheless.


1. Esper Midrange

A little bit of everything

Esper Midrange throws a lot of pesky creatures at your opponent, while also letting you draw cards and remove any threats with removal. | Image credit: Wizards of the Coast

First up, we’ve got Esper Midrange. If you’re new to the game, you might not know that Esper is shorthand for black, blue and white, and you also might not know that midrange decks are designed to do very well against a lot of different deck types. This particular deck has a lot going for it. A key factor here is a very cheap removal suite made up of three Cut Down, four Go for the Throat, and both The Wandering Emperor and Gix’s Command. You can also counter spells with No More Lies, meaning you’ve got a lot of interaction.

The creatures in this deck are all pretty annoying to deal with. A lot of creatures in this deck fly, which means that a lot of creature decks that don’t make the most of flying creatures are going to struggle when trying to defend against you. Plus, the creatures tend to let you draw cards, which means you’re more likely to see your removal spells when you need them.

There are a lot of decisions to make when you’re playing this Standard MTG deck which can make it tricky for newer players but, with so much card draw, you’ll get to grips with it quickly.


2. Domain Ramp

All of the colours

Domain Ramp builds up your mana pool with ramp spells such as Cartographer’s Survey, Glimpse the Core and Spelunking. | Image credit: Wizards of the Coast

Domain Ramp is named so because of the Domain keyword, which has an effect on cards based on the number of different basic land types you control, and ramping, which is where you put extra lands into play.

What that means is while this deck has a lot of land types in it, and some very expensive cards, you’ll be playing them earlier than normal. You’ll also find playing all five colours in this Standard deck a little easier thanks to the triome lands, which are three land types on one land, and with the help of ramp spells like Cartographer’s Survey, Glimpse the Core and Spelunking.

Your aim is to keep your opponent off the battlefield by using board wipes like Depopulate and Sunfall, and then end the game with Archangel of Wrather and Atraxa, Grand Unifier. The deck can struggle against incredibly fast aggro decks, but it’s not an impossible match-up unless the aggro deck draws almost perfectly.


3. Boros Convoke

Bring an army

Knight-Errant of Eos is actually the only Convoke card in Boros Convoke, sitting at the centre of its focus on flooding the field with creatures and attacking fast and often. | Image credit: Wizards of the Coast

We don’t think Boros Convoke is especially well-named, as it only has one card with Convoke in it. Hey, naming decks is hard. This Standard deck is, in essence, a go-wide aggro deck. What that means is that your aim is to completely flood the board with creatures, and then just keep attacking until you’ve won the game.

One of the coolest cards in the deck is Warden of the Inner Sky, a one-mana 1/2 that you can put +1/+1 counters on by tapping three artifacts or creatures, which can also gain Flying and Vigilance when it has more than three counters on it. Combine that with cards like Novice Inspector and Voldaren Epicure, which make artifact tokens as they enter the battlefield, and you’re golden.

Then you’ve got cards that buff all of your creatures, such as Sanguine Evangelist and Case of the Gateway Express, for even more damage every turn. Knight-Errant of Eos is the Convoke card in the deck, a 4/4 that allows you to draw creature cards.

Boros Convoke is a dependable Standard MTG deck that does a good job avoiding the loss of steam that some aggro decks suffer from, and can even do well against board wipes thanks to lots of different tokens.


4. Temur Land Combo

Land, lots of land

Half of the Temur Land Combo deck is land, with the likes of Virtue of Strength and Roxanne, Starfall Savant helping you to generate even more mana. | Image credit: Wizards of the Coast

If you love playing land cards then you’ll adore the Temur Land Combo deck. For starters, literally half the deck is land cards, which is wild. Your aim here is to basically create as much mana as possible. You’ve got cards like Virtue of Strength and Roxanne, Starfall Savant that can help you generate extra mana, with cards including Aftermath Analyst, Shigeki, Jukai Visionary and Spelunking to mess around with your graveyard.

You can then pour all of that mana into Worldsoul’s Rage to deal a huge amount of damage to your opponent with one spell. Memory Deluge basically single-handedly covers your standard card draw, and you can keep pesky creatures at bay with Fires of Victory.

It’s a solid Standard MTG deck for sure, but might not be the most fun for some newer players, because you spend a lot of time building up for a single strong turn and can’t do anything especially flashy with your creatures.


5. Azorius Control

What’s a creature?

With no creatures in its main list, Azorius Control excels in shutting down your opponent until they're left defenceless. | Image credit: Wizards of the Coast

Finally, we’ve got Azorius Control. This blue and white Standard MTG deck has no creatures in the main list. Instead, it’s filled to the brim with counterspells, removal spells and four copies of The Wandering Emperor.

On first glance, you’d assume the game plan here is to simply make MTG so boring for your opponent that they concede. After all, why would they keep playing when every spell they cast and creature they put into play gets countered or killed? That’s not actually the only strategy at work here, though.

You can finish off foes with a few different token types. While you’ve got Phyrexian Mite tokens from the land Mirrex, you can also create spirits using Phantom Interference, Three Steps Ahead and Sunfall. You’ve got Restless Anchorage to play with as well, which is a land that can become a 2/3 creature with Flying for three mana. You just need to lock the game down until your opponent is out of cards in their hand, and then slowly chip away at them.

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