Pioneer – Bant Control with Wilderness Reclamation

Have you ever wanted to feel like you're playing a control deck and a combo deck at the same time? In Pioneer we can combine Wilderness Reclamation and Sphinx's Revelation to do just that.

Bant Control Decklist (Pioneer)

4 Supreme Verdict
4 Absorb
1 Censor
3 Cyclonic Rift
2 Dig Through Time
1 Dovin's Veto
4 Growth Spiral
2 Hieroglyphic Illumination
2 Settle the Wreckage
4 Sphinx's Revelation
2 Cast Out
4 Wilderness Reclamation
4 Breeding Pool
2 Castle Vantress
4 Fabled Passage
1 Forest (347)
4 Glacial Fortress
4 Hallowed Fountain
2 Island (335)
4 Lumbering Falls
2 Plains (331)
1 Dovin's Veto
2 Aether Gust
2 Disdainful Stroke
3 Jace, Vryn's Prodigy/Jace, Telepath Unbound
1 Mystical Dispute
1 Natural State
1 Sanguine Sacrament
2 Search for Azcanta/Azcanta, the Sunken Ruin
1 Veil of Summer
Wilderness Reclamation

We're used to seeing Wilderness Reclamation combined with Nexus of Fate. However, we don't actually need to go this deep into combo territory for this enchantment to be a powerful card. If we're playing a control deck with mostly instant speed spells, Wilderness Reclamation is simply a "free" spell that doubles all of your mana for the rest of the game. We don't need to play any "bad" combo cards that make us weaker against interactive decks in order for this to translate into a victory.

Sphinx's Revelation

Sphinx's Revelation is the biggest payoff in this list for achieving absurd amounts of mana. As a card that's excellent at both refueling and keeping you alive long enough to cast the sweet fuel you just drew, it does an even better job at this when we can double, triple, or quadruple its normal values. While often the best way to cast Revelation is to wait until the opponent's end step while having a counterspell at the ready, you should be able to navigate the game state suitably to determine whether or not anything your opponent can do is even good enough for you to care about anymore.

Cyclonic Rift

Cyclonic Rift is another awesome payoff for the big mana that doesn't give us clunky draws when it's missing. It can be played as the adventure half of Brazen Borrower in a pinch, but with Reclamation we can potentially bounce our opponent's entire board to their hand as early as turn 5 while still keeping open most of our remaining mana.

Growth Spiral

Our only other green card in the maindeck is Wilderness Reclamation's partner in crime. Growth Spiral is easy to cast early and speeds us up by a full turn, whether it's enacting our Reclamation gameplan or simply being able to cast a Supreme Verdict on the third turn.

Supreme VerdictSettle the Wreckage

This list mainly relies on the powerful Supreme Verdict as its board clear of choice, but Settle the Wreckage is a great instant-speed option for haste creatures or recursive threats. Both sit at the sweet spot of four mana for the interaction with both Growth Spiral and Wilderness Reclamation.

AbsorbDovin's Veto

We're running the full four hard counters in Absorb, which makes sense since we should often have mana to spare. A three mana counterspell is often weak because it can be difficult to cast an additional spell in the same turn, but the life gain is a powerful enough effect that we can absorb this awkwardness when we don't have our mana engine online yet.

CensorHieroglyphic IlluminationCast Out

One of the subtle geniuses of this list is the inclusion of so many modal spells to round out the deck. Cast Out and Hieroglyphic Illumination are great cards when we have access to our key enchantment but are clunky otherwise. However, with so many cycling cards we'll never find ourselves in a situation where we are stuck with a bunch of expensive cards and nothing to do. These cheap cantrips also give us enough ways to fill our graveyard that we can support a few copies of the overpowered Dig Through Time.

Lumbering Falls

AlarmObot is a sicko and only ran 4 copies of Lumbering Falls as a win condition. This is probably OK since they have hexproof and most opponents will concede in the face of a massive Revelation, but if you think you need something additional you may want to include a copy of something like Teferi, Hero of Dominaria or Elspeth, Sun's Champion.

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Michael Schuller