48. The Aristocrats

Faithless Brewing, Episode 48: Woe Strider


Few things in Magic are more powerful than the ability to sacrifice your own permanents. Look no further than Krark-Clan Ironworks or the more recent Grinding Station Breach decks in Modern: if it doesn’t cost mana, and you can do it repeatedly, the sky is the limit for sacrifice combo. On the creature side of things, sacrifice outlets have an equally distinguished pedigree. From the Standard Mardu Aristocrats deck that won Pro Tour Gatecrash, to Four-Color Rally the Ancestors, to Hogaak Bridgevine or Yawgmoth Undying combo, even stretching back as far as Zombie Bombardment in Legacy, it seems that every kind of sacrifice deck has found some competitive success.


Aristocrats as a strategy has been on a temporary hiatus, with contemporary design philosophy dictating that sacrifice should cost mana, or only happen at fixed moments in the turn. But Theros: Beyond Death has flipped the script, with the printing of Woe Strider putting sacrifice decks back on the menu in Pioneer and even Standard. Combined with the 2019 additions to the Modern card pool of Carrion Feeder, Altar of Dementia, and Yawgmoth, Thran Physician, there has never been a better time to start eating your own permanents for fun and profit. Let’s get sacrificing!


Flashback: Brew Review Testing





Dimir Trap Control (Dan): 1-4 league

Original List: Dimir Trap Control by Soren W



Soul Sisters (Damon): 3-2 league

Original list: Soul Sisters by Paimon





Grixis Kroxa (David): 3-2 league

Rakdos Kroxa (David): 4-1 league

Original list: Rakdos Kroxa by illsicknasty



Spaghetti Flash (Damon): 3-2 league

Original list: Spaghetti Flash by nonstripedzebra


Imminent Doom Control (Dan): 3-2 league

Original list: Here Comes the Doom by KilgoreTrout503

“DOOM!… DOOM!” by James Earl Jones


Brew Session: Woe Strider





Sketch 1: Golgari Company

Sketch 2: 4c Rally Strider

Sketch 3: Abzan Double Combo

Sketch 4: Bishop of Wings Combo

Sketch 5: Rakdos Sacrifice



Reference lists:




BG Gruesome Company (Baymax, 5-0 league)

4c Vannifar Combo (Kurusu, 5-0 league)

4c Rally (Jhang Jhengyu, PT Nagoya, record unknown)

Rakdos Sacrifice (Troels Munk, PT Brussels, 2-3)

Mono-B Devotion (gloomy5200, 5-0 league)

Abzan Rallistocrats (Uniq, 5-0 league x2)




Jund Aristocrats (kortero, 5-0 league)




Rakdos Aristocrats (Theros Beyond Death era)

Mardu Aristocrats (Tom Martell, ISD/RTR era)



Zombie Bombardment (Legacy, Sam Black)



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