MTG – How To Build Goblin Charbelcher, a Budget Legacy Deck Tech for Magic: The Gathering!


Ooh! With Eternal Masters coming out, I’ve just got one question on the mind: What should I build in legacy? Let’s see… Alright, what do we got here? What do we got here? We got Counterbalance… Eh… Merfolk? Nah, everyone will hate me… High Tide, I have no idea how that works… Huh, Charbelcher, that’s an affordable Legacy deck! Hi! I’m Hoogie, the MTG assistant! It looks like you are trying to build a Magic deck. Would you like some help? Ugh! Hoogie is so annoying, but he builds pretty good decks… It looks like you are trying to build a Legacy deck. May I suggest playing Modern instead? Would you like me to guide you through Modern Kiki Chord? No, we’re building Legacy! Are you sure? The correct answer really is Modern. Enough of your sass, just let me build a Legacy deck, Hoogie! Alright… we’ll build Legacy. It looks like you want to build Charbelcher, so I guess you’re not all bad. Uh-huh. Let me just import this Belcher decklist from 2011, and… we’re all done! Good thing Legacy never changes! It looks you don’t know what you’re talking about, though slightly inferior to Modern, Legacy is still a dynamic format where decklists grow, evolve and refine over time. Are you sure about that? Let’s build an actual competitive Charbelcher deck instead. Alright! Legacy Charbelcher, which I can only assume is mono-red Goblin aggro! Let’s go! It looks like you -really- don’t know what you’re talking about. Charbelcher is nothing like the deck you described. Would you like a tutorial on Charbelcher? Mmm… Okay! Great! Before we begin: it looks like some of your artwork needs updating. Oh… right! That’s because they reprinted Goblin Charbelcher in Eternal Masters. Good thing too, ’cause that card was up to 6 dollars a piece. Ridiculous! Goblin Charbelcher – also known as just Belcher for short – is one of the most polarizing decks in the Legacy format. Hah! That’s exactly what Erin Campbell said about Legacy Dredge in her video. It is the definition of… Do Legacy players have some kind of persecution complex about the decks they play? Can I please just continue? Oh, I had more, but you go ahead Hoogie. It is the definition of a glass cannon deck It aims to end the game as quickly as possible, while interacting as little as possible with its opponent. Belcher does this, by either playing and activating its namesake Goblin Charbelcher, on the first turn of the game; Or by generating a large storm count and casting an Empty the Warrens. We do these obnoxious things by generating mana from various spells, such as: Lotus Petal, Chrome Mox, Simian Spirit Guide, Elvish Spirit Guide, Tinder Wall, Seething Song, Rite of Flame, Pyretic Ritual, Desperate Ritual and Lion’s Eye Diamond. Alright, so what ridiculous amount of overpriced dual lands do I need for this deck? You only run one dual land actually. It’s the only land in the entire deck. The deck runs four copies of Land Grant to go find this land. We need the land to be a Forest in order to search for it with Land Grant; We also want it to be a Mountain in the event we activate our Goblin Charbelcher while it’s still in our deck. This leads many people to playing Taiga as the lone land in their Belcher decks. The optimal land however to play is an Russian foil Stomping Ground. The reason for this, is it sends the message “I can afford a Taiga, but it really doesn’t matter”. Wait? So you’re telling me that this deck doesn’t even need to run any of the original dual lands? I can just put in a plain old Stomping Ground? Russian. Foil. Stomping Ground. Send a message. No! But… (Hoogie sighs.) I suppose… if you must. Moving on! The last deck in the main deck we have yet to discuss is Burning Wish. Burning Wish adds some consistency and utility to Belcher. Burning Wish’s primary use is acting as an additional win condition. We often use it to grab our fourth copy of Empty the Warrens from the sideboard to generate a plethora of Goblins. Oh… I get it! So, it lets me grab any card or “tool” that I need to solve problems with! So, if I need to kill a Gaddock Teeg, I guess I could grab a Pyroclasm from the sideboard; Or if I need to destroy an enchantment, just snag a Reverent Silence. Exactly. Chalice of the Void got you down? Go on a Shattering Spree. Not able to make enough Goblins to kill them? Spin the wheel with Diminishing Returns and try again. Some rude blue mage countered your Goblin Charbelcher? Trade in some Trash for a Treasure. When it comes to actually playing with Belcher, the games tend to be short. Yay! (claps) I love short games of Magic. But there are still many decisions in them. Decisions? I hate those! That’s why I play red Hoogie! Too bad… Decisions here are critical. Because you are often only taking a single turn, the cards you start with are the most important decision you make every game. When examining your opening hand, there are three things you need to take note of: First, you need to make sure you have one of your win conditions in the form of Goblin Charbelcher, Empty the Warrens, or Burning Wish. Second, you need to be sure you have a way to start making mana: Spirit Guides, Lotus Petal, Chrome Mox, Land Grant, and even Taiga are all “starters”, that make mana on their own. Finally, you need to make sure your hand makes enough mana to provide relevant action. Seven mana is the most you’ll need and this will kill your opponent with Goblin Charbelcher. Just four mana is enough when you are storming off with Empty the Warrens naturally, but you will need six mana if you are utilizing a Burning Wish to get Empty the Warrens. When it comes to sideboarding with Belcher, things are fairly straightforward. If your opponent is playing Force of Will, you bring in Xantid Swarms and Red Elemental Blasts. Generally I like to trim two copies of Burning Wish, a Lion’s Eye Diamond, a Seething Song, and two Pyretic Rituals. If your opponent is playing artifact-based disruption, such as Chalice of the Void, you bring in Ancient Grudge and Shattering Spree. Trimming Pyretic Ritual is fine in these matches as well. The remaining cards in the sideboard are there for Burning Wish targets when you need them, and often are never boarded in to the main deck. While playing Goblin Charbelcher is not for everyone, if you enjoy being the one asking the questions in a match of Magic, it might just be the deck for you. Not to mention, win or lose, you’ll almost always have time to go and find lunch after your match. Wow! Goblin Charbelcher is an affordable and unique deck for the Legacy format! Wait? Why am I playing that? Let’s build something in blue that uses Brainstorm! (Hoogie sighs.) Blegh.

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