Drafting Zebras Part II

This half includes the final build of the deck and the results from playing out the draft.

Building the Deck

All in all, this is quite an average haul. I was disappointed with the lack of Blue and Red Zuberi, especially as I picked up two so early. On the other hand, Blood Rites was a very nice bonus, and I manage to salvage enough decent Zuberi to mean I only had to play four colors. I built the following deck:


2 Ashen-Skin Zubera

3 Dripping-Tongue Zubera

1 Ember-Fist Zubera

1 Floating-Dream Zubera

3 Devouring Rage


1 Ben-Ben Akki Hermit

1 Moss Kami

1 Orbweaver Kumo

1 Kashi-Tribe Reaver

1 Orochi Ranger

1 Sakura-Tribe Elder

1 Kami of the Hunt

1 Soul of Magma


1 Blood Rites

1 Commune with Nature

1 Kodama’s Reach

1 Rend Spirit

1 Yamabushi’s Flame


9 Forest

5 Mountain

1 Swamp

1 Island

1 Lantern-Lit Graveyard

I am happy to be able to play six Red sources to feed Blood Rites (and Ben-Ben). My creature collection is looking a bit sorrowful, save Moss Kami and I may be vulnerable to a fast aerial beats deck if I can’t get Ben-Ben online. Seven Zuberi is not as many as I hoped for, but is acceptable, especially as I have some other Spirits to fuel a lethal Rage.

Round 1

Game 1

I lost the toss and kept a hand featuring my three main colors of mana, a couple of random Zuberi and Blood Rites. My opponent was playing B/U and opened with a Nezumi Cutthroat, which I had no immediate answer for. Fortunately, he stalled at three land and couldn’t find any more significant threats at that mana cost. I eventually ran him over with Moss Kami and random 1/2s. Not the kind of game I was looking for to show how the deck works, but a win nevertheless.

Game 2

He once again had the turn 2 Nezumi Cutthroat, but this time I had an Ashen-Skin Zubera to counter. He followed that up with a Thief of Hope and a couple of random Soratami, but I had Floating-Dream Zubera, Orochi Ranger, and an Orbweaver Kumo to gum up the game again. I quietly assembled the pieces for my combo kill, but hit bad times when he played Keiga, the Tide Star. Keiga started swinging for five a turn and I was on a short clock. I found a second Red mana and managed to fire a Devouring Rage to trade Keiga for my Kumo, draw me a few cards and create a few spirit tokens. This left him with very few creatures to target with Keiga’s ability (I think he stole an Orochi Ranger) but unfortunately, his other flyers combined with some Thief of Hope pinging gave him the game a couple of turns later.

Game 3

He got the beatdown on with a Soratami Mirror-Guard and Cloudskater early in the game and got down a Hisoka’s Guard. Meanwhile, I got in a few damage with some early Zuberi. I built up my mana base and dropped a few more creatures, as did he. I eventually found a second Red source to drop Blood Rites. He beat me down to three and passed the turn, with mana open for the Guard. I fired the first Blood Rites shot at the Hisoka’s Guard, which protected itself, and then killed the Mirror Guard with the second shot, sacking two Zuberi, and giving me two spirits and two cards as a reward. I played another random Zubera and then passed the turn. He got in another hit with the Cloudskater, but I won with a large Devouring Rage the following turn.

Round 2

Game 1

I was never really in this game. My opponent was playing an almost mono-White deck with a splash of Blue. He opened with Devoted Retainer, Kami of Ancient Law, and Kitsune Blademaster in the first three turns. I could only find a couple of Zuberi to defend with and was soon in single-digit life totals. I started to draw some threats and answers, but a Soratami Seer finished me off.

Game 2

My opponent had another fast start, but I managed to stabilize by accelerating into Ben-Ben and Moss Kami. My opponent began assembling his Samurai army, including Nagao, Bound by Honor, and I assembled a load of 1/2s. Eventually I hit critical mass and I started calculating the potential blocking possibilities he had, and whether or not I could still win. Then I remembered that Moss Kami has Trample, and so I just swung in and gave it +15/+0 which, combined with the triggered ability from Ember-Fist Zubera, made it lethal.

Game 3

He came out with a random assortment of White creatures, while I dropped a Black, Blue and Green Zubera. On turn 6, he had three cards left in hand, so I used a Devouring Rage (I really could have used Greed at this point) to sack all the Zuberi giving me three spirits, three cards, and empty his hand. So now we had the interesting game situation where he had Kitsune Blademaster, Devoted Retainer, and Kitsune Riftwalker but no cards, while I had three 1/1 dorks but six cards. He was on 20 life while I was sitting on 18. Advantage me, don’t you think? I thought so, especially as my Floating-Dream Zubera had netted me Blood Rites.

He spanked me for five and laid another land, which suited me fine. I swung back for three and dropped Blood Rites, unfortunately having no more Red mana with which to activate it. He peeled and dropped Kami of Ancient Law and then sacked it to kill Blood Rites, before swinging for another five taking me to eight. At this point, I may or may not have said something along the lines of “how lucky” and he may or may not have replied something like “there are two in my deck”. Well, I was down to eight but still had a handful of gas, and I dropped a couple of Zuberi and an Orbweaver Kumo, after swinging for another three. He untapped and played… Meloku. Good Game.

I was a little disappointed that the games didn’t allow me to display a bit more of what this deck is capable of, but I think you get an idea now of what this deck is all about. As I said, I’m not sure how viable this deck will be once the majority of players realize the power of the two Devouring cards and, to an extent, the Zuberi themselves. However, for now you can have great fun drafting this deck.

Zebras – get them while they’re hot


‘piemaster’ on MTGO

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