Best MTG Kaldheim Standard Metagame Challenge decks

Earn loads of KHM booster packs and gold this weekend.

Image via WotC

The Standard Metagame Challenge event is returning to Magic: The Gathering Arena this weekend, offering loads of Kaldheim booster packs as rewards for multiple wins. 

Wizards of the Coast is running the Standard Metagame Challenge via MTG Arena from Feb. 6 to 9. An entry cost of 400 gems or 2,000 gold is needed to play, offering players up to 30 Kaldheim booster packs for seven wins. Since the digital release of KHM on Jan. 28, numerous Standard Constructed decks have left a mark on a wide open and mostly undetermined meta.

The Standard MTGO Challenge showcased top MTG decks like Izzet Tempo (Nathansteuer), Temur Ramp (Herotsukai), and Mono-Blue Snow (KelMasterP). Deathtouch tribal builds have performed well as a budget build and Mono-Green Food may have a greater impact on the meta than most players realize. 

From Aggro to Control archetypes, here are the best KHM decks to play in the upcoming MTG Arena Standard Metagame Challenge. 

Izzet Tempo

With the release of Goldspan Dragon via KHM, most players will agree that Izzet Tempo might be the most popular deck played this weekend in the MTG Arena Standard Metagame Challenge. Bonecrusher Giant and Brazen Borrower are the only other two creatures within Nathansteuer’s build. Four copies of Shark Typhoon apply late-game pressure, along with Faceless Haven.

Controlling the tempo of a match is vital and this deck does that with two new KHM Instant spells. Behold the Multiverse provides card draw and a peek at what a player can draw while Disdainful Stroke, Essence Scatter, and Saw it Coming keep opponents from playing powerful cards. Powerful creatures like Ox of Agonas and Phoenix of Ash are standing by in the sideboard, along with more removal.  

Here’s Nathansteuer’s first-place Izzet Tempo deck:

  • 4 Bonecrusher Giant (ELD) 115
  • 4 Brazen Borrower (ELD) 39
  • 4 Goldspan Dragon (KHM) 358
  • 3 Shatterskull Smashing (ZNR) 354
  • 4 Behold the Multiverse (KHM) 46
  • 2 Disdainful Stroke (KHM) 54
  • 2 Essence Scatter (IKO) 49
  • 2 Negate (ZNR) 71
  • 4 Saw It Coming (KHM) 76
  • 4 Shark Typhoon (IKO) 67
  • 4 Fabled Passage (M21) 386
  • 3 Faceless Haven (KHM) 371
  • 4 Riverglide Pathway (ZNR) 289
  • 7 Snow-Covered Island (KHM) 279
  • 3 Snow-Covered Mountain (KHM) 283
  • 3 Volatile Fjord (KHM) 273
  • 3 Frost Bite (KHM) 138
  • 2 Negate (ZNR) 71
  • 3 Mystical Dispute (ELD) 58
  • 3 Ox of Agonas (THB) 147
  • 2 Phoenix of Ash (THB) 148
  • 2 Scorching Dragonfire (M21) 158
  • 1 Shredded Sails (IKO) 136
  • 2 Storm’s Wrath (THB) 157

Mono-Green Food

Mono-Green Food maintains its Standard Constructed S-tier status, adding Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider as an additional finisher. Players should have most of these powerful Green cards unlocked with wildcards by now, making it a cheap and ideal deck to play this weekend. Mono-Green Food is one of the best MTG decks to play at the Standard Challenge Event, according to the pro player and streamer Yoman5. 

“Mono-Green Food is incredibly well-positioned right now, and it’s a strong proactive deck capable of playing through a lot of nonsense,” Yoman5 said.

Heavy with creatures, Gilded Goose provides mana ramp while Feasting Troll King, Lovestruck Beast, and Kazandu Mammoth apply early pressure.  Thrashing Bontodon is the ideal creature who doubles as Artifact and Enchantment removal. Wicked Wolf, likewise, applies its own removal, along with Kogla, the Titan Ape. 

Here’s Yoman5’s Mono-Green Food deck:

  • 4 Castle Garenbrig
  • 3 Chainweb Aracnir
  • 3 Faceless Haven
  • 3 Feasting Troll King
  • 4 Gilded Goose
  • 4 Kazandu Mammoth
  • 2 Kogla, the Titan Ape
  • 4 Lovestruck Beast
  • 2 Questing Beast
  • 4 Ram Through
  • 1 Scavenging Ooze
  • 15 Snow-Covered Forest
  • 4 Tangled Florahedron
  • 4 The Great Henge
  • 2 Thrashing Brontodon
  • 3 Trail of Crumbs
  • 1 Trail of Crumbs
  • 1 Vivien, Monsters’ Advocate
  • 1 Vivien, Monsters’ Advocate
  • 2 Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider
  • 1 Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider
  • 4 Wicked Wolf
  • 2 Wilt
  • 1 Witch’s Oven

Boros Aggro

Mono-Red Aggro placed eighth in the MTGO Challenge event, beaten out by Theo_jung’s Boros Aggro build (fourth place). Three KHM cards have given Boros Aggro a boost in MTG Standard tier rankings: Goldspan Dragon, Showdown of the Skalds, and Usher of the Fallen. Other familiar names like Bonecrusher Giant, Robber of the Rich, and Sheperd of the Flock make up the build.

Rather than running multiple copies of Embercleave, Theo_jung only included one copy alongside three copies of Maul of the Skyclaves. In conjunction with the Equipment, the saga Showdown of the Skalds pumps up low-cost creatures in the late game for extra value, while Shatterskull Smashing is the primary form of removal. 

Within the sideboard, Embereth Shieldbreaker and Giant Killer provide additional removal options. Ox of Agonas and Phoenix of the Ash are the creatures, along with the new KHM angel, Reidane, God of the Worthy.

Here’s Theo_jung’s Boros Aggro deck:

  • 4 Bonecrusher Giant (ELD) 115
  • 2 Goldspan Dragon (KHM) 358
  • 4 Robber of the Rich (ELD) 138
  • 4 Seasoned Hallowblade (M21) 34
  • 4 Selfless Savior (M21) 36
  • 4 Shepherd of the Flock (ELD) 28
  • 2 Skyclave Apparition (ZNR) 322
  • 4 Usher of the Fallen (KHM) 35
  • 4 Shatterskull Smashing (ZNR) 354
  • 1 Embercleave (ELD) 120
  • 3 Maul of the Skyclaves (ZNR) 320
  • 4 Showdown of the Skalds (KHM) 229
  • 4 Mountain (KHM) 397
  • 4 Needleverge Pathway (ZNR) 288
  • 8 Plains (KHM) 394
  • 4 Temple of Triumph (M21) 391
  • 2 Skyclave Apparition (ZNR) 322
  • 2 Embereth Shieldbreaker (ELD) 122
  • 3 Giant Killer (ELD) 14
  • 3 Ox of Agonas (THB) 147
  • 3 Phoenix of Ash (THB) 148
  • 2 Reidane, God of the Worthy (KHM) 300

Honorable mentions

There are a number of decks that players will underestimate or overlook in the MTG Arena Standard Metagame Challenge event. Dimir Rogues is still one of the most powerful Magic Standard builds and it doesn’t need any KHM cards to pop off. 

  • 3 Agadeem’s Awakening
  • 4 Bloodchief’s Thirst
  • 4 Clearwater Pathway
  • 1 Cling to Dust
  • 1 Confounding Conundrum
  • 4 Drown in the Loch
  • 4 Fabled Passage
  • 1 Hagra Mauling
  • 2 Heartless Act
  • 4 Into the Story
  • 5 Island
  • 2 Lullmage’s Domination
  • 1 Lullmage’s Domination
  • 1 Lurrus of the Dream Den
  • 4 Merfolk Windrobber
  • 2 Mystical Dispute
  • 4 Negate
  • 3 Of One Mind
  • 4 Ruin Crab
  • 3 Skyclave Shade
  • 4 Soaring Thought-Thief
  • 3 Swamp
  • 4 Temple of Deceit
  • 4 Thieves’ Guild Enforcer
  • 1 Thieving Skydiver
  • 2 Zagoth Triome

Temur Ramp had a solid showing at the MTGO Challenge, created by Herotsukai, earning a second-place finish. 

  • 4 Ugin, the Spirit Dragon (M21) 285
  • 2 Goldspan Dragon (KHM) 358
  • 4 Beanstalk Giant (ZNC) 61
  • 4 Cultivate (CMR) 424
  • 4 Genesis Ultimatum (IKO) 189
  • 1 Seize the Spoils (KHM) 149
  • 2 Shatterskull Smashing (ZNR) 354
  • 4 Fire Prophecy (IKO) 116
  • 2 Into the Roil (CMR) 397
  • 4 Jwari Disruption (ZNR) 64
  • 2 Mystical Dispute (ELD) 58
  • 4 Shark Typhoon (IKO) 67
  • 1 Barkchannel Pathway (KHM) 290
  • 4 Cragcrown Pathway (ZNR) 287
  • 3 Fabled Passage (M21) 386
  • 4 Forest (KHM) 398
  • 4 Island (KHM) 395
  • 4 Ketria Triome (IKO) 250
  • 2 Mountain (KHM) 397
  • 1 Riverglide Pathway (ZNR) 289
  • 1 Mystical Dispute (ELD) 58
  • 3 Bonecrusher Giant (ELD) 115
  • 2 Essence Scatter (IKO) 49
  • 3 Koma, Cosmos Serpent (KHM) 326
  • 1 Mazemind Tome (M21) 383
  • 3 Negate (ZNR) 71
  • 1 Shock (M21) 159
  • 1 Shredded Sails (IKO) 136

And for players itching to play the returning Snow mechanic, KelMasterP put together a solid Mono-Blue list that finished third in the MTGO Challenge event. 

  • 4 Ascendant Spirit (KHM) 341
  • 4 Brazen Borrower (ELD) 39
  • 4 Cosima, God of the Voyage (KHM) 303
  • 4 Frost Augur (KHM) 56
  • 2 Gadwick, the Wizened (ELD) 48
  • 2 Icebreaker Kraken (KHM) 345
  • 2 Voracious Greatshark (IKO) 70
  • 4 Essence Scatter (IKO) 49
  • 2 Neutralize (IKO) 59
  • 4 Shark Typhoon (IKO) 67
  • 4 Faceless Haven (KHM) 371
  • 24 Snow-Covered Island (KHM) 279
  • 2 Bubble Snare (ZNR) 47
  • 2 Graven Lore (KHM) 344
  • 3 Mystical Dispute (ELD) 58
  • 4 Negate (ZNR) 71
  • 4 Threnody Singer (THB) 75