5 Things to Consider When Building a Deck With Fires of Invention
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Fires of Invention is the card that struck me as the most powerful card in Throne of Eldraine during the spoiler season. When it works you can be ahead by so much mana. But the difficult part about this card is deciding which other 56 cards to play. In this Standard format, I have almost exclusively been playing decks with Fires of Invention. Here are 5 things that you should consider when building a deck with Fires of Invention.
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1. Which colors to play The main versions of Fires of Invention that I have tried out so far are Jeskai and Temur. Jeskai lists usually play a lot of planeswalkers like Teferi and Narset and and is able to get value in the early game using them. I have found planeswalkers aren’t at their best in a Fires strategy because of the limited amount of spells you can play to protect them, but I think they are some of the better options out there for Fires. Teferi is just a really good card and the cheap planeswalkers are good to cast immediately after a Fires. An awkward part about Narset though is that you can’t get Fae of Wishes off the activation. I have also tried playing the Jeskai deck splashing Oko, but I wouldn’t recommend that. I have also been trying out a Temur version of Fires with some elemental synergy with Risen Reef and Omnath. With that package, Cavalier of Flame is able to win the game very quickly. It can also play Oko. Temur’s weakness is that it can’t play the wraths such as Deafening Clarion and Time Wipe in the main deck and that comes up often. Temur can still play Fae of Wishes and pull a Time Wipe out of the sideboard, but that is slow. The advantage of Temur is that it has extra speed in getting to the Fires because it can play mana ramp. Green versions of Fires have the disadvantage of only being able to play the land ramp spell and not the mana dorks. That is because mana dorks don't add to the overall land for Fires. Fortunately, Growth Spiral, Beanstalk Giant, and Arboreal Grazer are actually fine cards but the other ramp spells aren’t great. Golos fires isn’t a deck that I’ve played yet but it seems pretty solid. Other Fires decks that I’m interested to try are some Grixis or Five-Color builds. Those are difficult to build because they require good mana bases and just the right colored cards. I’m interested to see which Fires deck will be the best.
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2. Which cheap cards to play Obviously, you can’t just build a deck exclusively with expensive cards. It is difficult to find the right cards because you don’t want a lot of cheap cards stuck in your hand after you cast your Fires. Green decks are able to play cards like Arboreal Grazer or Growth Spiral which can ramp you to the Fires. Jeskai versions play cheap interaction spells and cantrips. It is risky to play a large number of cheap cantrips such as Opt because after you play the Fires, it will be difficult to find time to cast them because they don’t have as high an impact as many of the other cards. To get around this some decks have been playing Shimmer of Possibility or Drawn from Dreams because the card selection is much higher and it is the same cost as Opt when you have a Fires in play. Also, Teferi is a good way to get around Fires' limit on spells because you can bounce the Fires and then cast the spells you want to cast.  Another list that I want to talk about is Martin Juza’s list playing 8 Cavaliers. He decided to get rid of most of the cards less than 3 mana and only have a few Aether Gust and Bonecrusher Giants. This path is pretty risky depending on how slow the format is but I think it is currently viable because the deck has the ability to catch up with Deafening Clarion. This is the deck that I’m currently liking the most because it has the most powerful Fires.
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3. Counterspells? Counterspells are not at their best because Fires has the text that you can’t play spells on your opponent’s turn. It doesn’t mean counterspells are blank when it is in play but they are definitely weakened. Even though counterspells might be not optimal, Fires decks still play them in their sideboard. I think this seems right just as a way to back up your fires or protecting the first spell you play in the turn. You have to be careful to play them before they are useless.
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4. What mana sinks to play Mana sinks are really good because Fires doesn’t actually use any mana to cast spells. Fires only gives you a limit on how many spells you can cast on your turn so you can just use your mana for something else, and effectively you are able to cast three spells in the same turn. I have found the best mana sinks are Biogenic Ooze, Cavalier of Flame, and Oko. Cavalier is especially good in the right deck because it allows you to win the game out of nowhere in some circumstances. Other good mana sinks that you can use are the castles and more specifically Castle Vantress. Scrying is helpful in getting to your most important cards.
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5. Fae of Wishes Fae of Wishes is very powerful in combination with Fires. Being able to tutor for a card in the sideboard and immediately play it is very powerful. The cards you get don’t even need to be in your colors. Some of the most impactful of these that are played are Planewide Celebration, Command the Dreadhorde, Casualties of War, a variety of wraths, and planeswalkers. The deckbuilding restriction of this though is that you actually have to use some of your sideboard slots to play these cards. Fae of Wishes is also especially powerful with its activated ability because you can effectively cast a card from your sideboard every other turn. You can just use the card you draw to discard and return the Fae and then you are able to use it over and over again. It is also good if you can Time Wipe the Fae back to your hand. Fae is a good card but might not be right in this deck though. I have been in a lot of situations where it was pretty awkward.
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If I were to play a deck right now I'd play a version of Fires similar to Martin Juza's build with Cavaliers because it seems to have a good matchup against Golos decks. Martin Juza's Fires 3 Aether Gust 4 Bonecrusher Giant 4 Teferi, Time Raveler 4 Cavalier of Flame 4 Cavalier of Gales 4 Deafening Clarion 1 Niv-Mizzet, Parun 3 Drawn from Dreams 4 Fabled Passage 4 Fires of Invention 4 Hallowed Fountain 2 Island 2 Mountain 1 Plains 2 Sacred Foundry 4 Steam Vents 2 Temple of Epiphany 4 Temple of Triumph 4 Castle Vantress Sideboard 3 Ashiok, Dream Render 3 Devout Decree 2 Disdainful Stroke 4 Mystical Dispute 3 Realm-Cloaked Giant I hoped you liked my thoughts and I wish you luck in your future deck building. Please comment if you have any more questions.
(Edited)
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