Khans of Tarkir: Our in-house format and the rankings

So when the Magic: The Gathering set “Khans of Tarkir” came out, I (this is Claire writing) was absolutely entranced. And that was rare, because in the past I’ve just been like… Magic cards are a thing, I’m not much into it but I know a lot of people are. So this was something pretty amazing for it to get me hooked.

I don’t know why, there’s just something about the theme that really appealed to me. So I asked James, who has made decks and draft cubes and stuff before what he thought I could do. Once he told me the options, I decided to go in a bit of a different direction and make normal sized 60 card decks, but all the nonland cards would only have one copy in the deck! So kind of like a cross between normal format and the commander format, if you know what I’m talking about.

So below this post I’ve included the deck lists, but I thought it important to give the ranking results from our little home “tournament” we ran a little while ago, especially since we’re about to change the decks up with the new set’s cards and film our tournaments for you.

Last Place: Jeskai. This was really sad because James was really keen on this theme, which is a little bit like eastern kung fu monks with a bit of Avatar The Last Airbender thrown in. However, in the format as I wanted it, the deck was way too weak. Not enough creatures, and not enough damage-dealing creatures at that.

4th Place: Mardu. I was excited to play this deck, but not when I realised how inconsistent it was. Mardu wants to be a rush deck, but it could never pull it off (in the format we used). I really want it to be better, because it has goblins in it.

3rd Place: Temur. This is probably my favourite deck because, being new to Magic, for me it’s the simplest deck. It just goes out there, with big monsters, all stompy. Nothing too tricky. However, it failed a couple of times to pull off its intended stompiness.

2nd Place: Abzan. I enjoyed this deck too, though I think James handled the mechanics better. Funnily enough, we found this deck ridiculously good at being a rush deck, certainly more than Mardu. It definitely gave the 1st place winner a run for its money…

1st Place: Sultai. The clan that’s winning all the major tournaments was also the one winning in our house. It’s got so much to recommend it: it’s good at rushing, delve is a stupidly good mechanic, and all the interaction with the graveyard just really gets under the skin of the opposition.

So we will of course be focusing on fixing the lowest placed decks first when we filter in the new cards. I look forward to bringing those matches to you in video form soon!
– Claire

Click below to see the deck lists

Abzan Deck
Abzan Battle Priest
Abzan Falconer
Abzan Guide
Ainok Bond-Kin
Anafenza, the Foremost
Archers’ Parapet
Armament Corps
Dazzling Ramparts
Herald of Anafenza
High Sentinels of Arashin
Ivorytusk Fortress
Krumar Bond-Kin
Longshot Squad
Mer-Ek Nightblade
Salt Road Patrol
Siege Rhino
Tuskguard Captain
Unyielding Krumar
War Behemoth
Watcher of the Roost
Incremental Growth
Kin-Tree Invocation
Abzan Charm
Defiant Strike
Dragonscale Boon
Feat of Resistance
Smite the Monstrous
Take Up Arms
Abzan Ascendancy
Brave the Sands
Retribution of the Ancients
Suspension Field
Abzan Banner
Briber’s Purse
4 Sandsteppe Citadel
4 Blossoming Sands
4 Scoured Barrens
3 Forest
6 Plains
3 Swamp

Jeskai Deck
Bloodfire Expert
Bloodfire Mentor
Dragon-Style Twins
Efreet Weaponmaster
Highspire Mantis
Jeskai Elder
Jeskai Student
Jeskai Windscout
Master of Pearls
Mistfire Weaver
Monastery Flock
Mystic of the Hidden Way
Narset, Englightened Master
Pearl Lake Ancient
Riverwheel Aerialists
Sage of the Inward Eye
Sage-Eye Harrier
Thousand Winds
Warden of the Eye
Wetland Sambar
Whirlwind Adept
Master the Way
Burn Away
Deflecting Palm
Flying Crane Technique
Jeskai Charm
Smite the Monstrous
Swift Kick
Jeskai Ascendancy
Quiet Contemplation
Singing Bell Strike
Jeskai Banner
4 Mystic Monastery
4 Swiftwater Cliffs
4 Tranquil Cove
6 Island
3 Mountain
3 Plains

Mardu Deck
Ankle Shanker
Bellowing Saddlebrute
Bloodsoaked Champion
Canyon Lurkers
Chief of the Edge
Firehoof Cavalry
Gurmag Swiftwing
Horde Ambusher
Jeering Instigator
Mardu Blazebringer
Mardu Heart-Piercer
Mardu Hordechief
Mardu Roughrider
Mardu Skullhunter
Mardu Warshrieker
Ponyback Brigade
Timely Hordemate
Valley Dasher
War-Name Aspirant
Wingmate Roc
Zurgo Helmsmasher
Act of Treason
Arrow Storm
Hordeling Outburst
Rush of Battle
Crackling Doom
Kill Shot
Mardu Charm
Ride Down
Smite the Monstrous
Trumpet Blast
Mardu Ascendancy
Raiders’ Spoils
Dragon Throne of Tarkir
Mardu Banner
4 Nomad Outpost
4 Bloodfell Caves
4 Wind-Scarred Crag
6 Mountain
3 Plains
3 Swamp

Sultai Deck
Abomination of Gudul
Grim Haruspex
Hooting Mandrills
Kheru Bloodsucker
Kheru Dreadmaw
Kheru Lich Lord
Kheru Spellsnatcher
Meandering Towershell
Necropolis Fiend
Rakshasa Deathdealer
Rakshasa Vizier
Rotting Mastodon
Ruthless Ripper
Sagu Archer
Shambling Attendants
Sidisi, Brood Tyrant
Sidisi’s Pet
Smoke Teller
Sultai Flayer
Sultai Scavenger
Sultai Soothsayer
Swarm of Bloodflies
Death Frenzy
Dutiful Return
Rakshasa’s Secret
Scout the Borders
Taigam’s Scheming
Villainous Wealth
Become Immense
Disdainful Stroke
Murderous Cut
Sultai Charm
Debilitating Injury
Sultai Ascendancy
Sultai Banner
4 Oppulent Palace
4 Dismal Backwater
4 Jungle Hollow
3 Forest
3 Island
6 Swamp

Temur Deck
Ainok Tracker
Alpine Grizzly
Avalanche Tusker
Bear’s Companion
Embodiment of Spring
Glacial Stalker
Heir of the Wilds
Highland Game
Icefeather Aven
Pine Walker
Rattleclaw Mystic
Savage Knuckleblade
Scion of Glaciers
Snowhorn Rider
Summit Prowler
Surrak Dragonclaw
Temur Charger
Tusked Colossodon
Witness of the Ages
Woolly Loxodon
Arc Lightning
Roar of Challenge
Savage Punch
Seek the Horizon
Awaken the Bear
Crippling Chill
Force Away
Icy Blast
Temur Charm
Trap Essence
Temur Ascendancy
Temur Banner
4 Frontier Bivouac
4 Rugged Highlands
4 Thornwood Falls
6 Forest
3 Island
3 Mountain


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