The Scoop: Casual Contemplation – The Best Offense is a Good Defense

It’s not terribly common that my favorite card in a set ends up being the most coveted and expensive in the MTG community. The card this deck is based around is a perfect example. Assault Formation turns combat on its head by making “big butt” creatures the thing to be feared on the battlefield. The ability to deal damage with toughness rather than power isn’t new. Doran, the Siege Tower was able to do this back in the day. Even Ixalan gave us Belligerent Brontodon, which does the same thing to all of our creatures. But these cards miss the ability to turn Walls into war machines, and that’s where Assault Formation comes in.


  • Creatures
    • Tree of Redemption x2
    • Fog Bank x2
    • Guard Gomazoa x2
    • Overgrown Battlement x4
    • Wall of Frost x2
    • Hover Barrier x2
    • Murmuring Phantasm x2
    • Stinging Barrier x2
    • Glacial Wall x2
  • Instants and Sorceries
    • Tower Defense x4
    • Noxious Revival x4
    • Fog x4
  • Enchantments
    • Assault Formation x4
  • Lands
    • Simic Guildgate x4
    • Island x10
    • Forest x10

This deck at one point housed white, but I found the Bant combination slowed the deck down a bit too much. The only thing I really sacrificed by taking white out was Wall of Denial, which was a painful loss, but Tree of Redemption, Wall of Frost and Glacial Wall can bring plenty of damage on their own. The other reason I picked Blue over White was the tricky strength in Fog Bank and Guard Gomazoa. 2/2’s and 3/3’s with Flying (essentially, because of Assault Formation) that don’t take combat damage are no slouches. Overgrown Battlement supplies extra mana for the removal of Defender via Assault Formation. Stinging Barrier was a fun addition as well, since it offers mild direct damage in a color combination that would otherwise not.

Tower Defense is an incredibly powerful card in this deck. Providing, essentially, +5/+5 to every creature for 2 mana at instant speed? It’s pretty nasty. Noxious Revival was my choice for supplying recovery to the loss of Assault Formation to removal. Fog gives a couple of extra turns if you’re waiting to hit an Assault Formation and you don’t feel like putting some of your walls in harm’s way.

  • Turn 1: (Forest)
  • Turn 2: (Forest) Overgrown Battlement
  • Turn 3: (Island) Guard Gomazoa
  • Turn 4: (Forest) Assault Formation, Fog Bank
  • Turn 5: Tree of Redemption
  • Turn 6: Tap Overgrown Battlement for an additional 4 mana. Use 3 mana to swing with Tree of Redemption, Fog Bank and Guard Gomazoa. Wait for opponent to declare blocks. Cast Tower Defense.
  • Turn 7: Rinse and repeat.

The disadvantage of this deck, as is the case with many of my Casual Contemplations admittedly, is that it requires Assault Formation on the field to be even remotely effective. However, this deck doesn’t leave itself vulnerable, because the relatively cheap and sturdy Walls do their job of protecting your life while waiting for an Assault Formation. This deck can easily survive several turns of bad draws, etc. and doesn’t need to trigger everything quickly. But once everything is in place, this deck quickly overwhelms opponents.


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.