In a race between a lion and deer, the deer will often win. Because a lion runs for its food, but a deer runs for its life.
How do I play it?
The Spooked Deers is a terrific take at a Spirit and Forest dual aura deck. We will call on the forest spirits to torment opposing caster’s and buff the almighty White Stag. Herds of Not Deer and Deer Woman are included to flank the White Stag, while Lechuza takes care of tough beasties and Blue Mist allows you to take your time if needed.
While you rely on the natural Forest strength to grow your Chapter and find the Pages you need a few extra unexpected add-in’s like Morpheus and Tribal Warcry will ensure opponents never make it out of your haunted forest.
We really crafted this deck around the strong abilities of the White Stag. Given it’s only a two drop for one neutral and one Spirit this will be an early game beastie if you get a decent draw. With a base of 35LP/20HP White Stag is immediately buffed by his own attack which states “ For each Spirit Beastie you control with a Forest Terra bonus this attack deals +10 DMG.”… so make that 35LP/30HP. With a Forest Terra in play that adds up to 50 and if you find some more of your deer friends which we will get to in a moment it’s an additional +10 for each. But wait… that’s not all.
The kicker is the contract ability which basically says if you control another White Stag you can take a 2 or less cost Spirit Beastie and a Forest terra from your Afterlife into your chapter. Given all your Stag/Deer beasties are spirit and two cost this contract effect could trigger multiple times.
Not Deer is a great side kick to White Stag as he has a Forest Terra bonus to help give the Stag’s the +10, but also the ability in it’s attack, Bloodied Claws, which allows you to send a beastie from your Limbo into your Afterlife which is an important step to set up White Stag’s contract ability. Not Deer also has some terrifying abilities, the most powerful potentially being it’s arena effect which give’s all other beasties with a Forest terra bound +10HP if Forest is active, almost acting as an additional buff on top of what White Stag is already producing.
The Deer Amigos weren’t complete without Deer Woman, so we had to include her. Honestly, this is a very overlooked beasties, but fits in perfectly with this build thanks to the Forest terra bonus, low cost and neutral cost. Deer Woman has 35LP, but is buffed to 55LP with wearing flowers as a 4th wall item, as well as swinging for 30HP +2 poison which will inflict an additional +30 damage over the next two turns. It also has a much higher +30 bonus for Forest Terra, plus the ability Nature’s Curse which deals 50 damage to any beastie with a status effect, presumably someone step and attacked the previous turn and poised with another Deer Woman or slept with a Lechuza.
Lechuza was added for some help from above along with some super useful abilities to deal with tougher beasties the buffed up Deer might not be able to get to. And last but not least, Blue Mist. In the absence of a true board wipe spell, the inclusion of Blue Mist is important because it will allow you to play a bit more paced and conservatively if needed thanks to it’s arena effect which will deal 100HP to opposing caster with more LP at the start of their turn. Sinister spirits indeed.
Some expected spells and some surprises on this build. Pretty straight forward from a Forest perspective with the full playset’s of Growth and Germinate along with Wood Devil to try to get the most out of milling through your deck to step up the Deer synergies perfectly.
The unexpected comes with some quick relief from tough beasties with Morpheus and some extra juice to boost up your Deer’s even more. Tribal Warcry is a fantastic spell, but I rarely use it because I typically try to find beasties which already have Tribal Boost so it’s auto enacted without having to pay the aura cost. Despite that, this build fits it perfect thanks to the fact with have eight Deer beasties (unfortunately Not Deer is of course not a deer, but a Beastie Demon). If you’re able to set up the board to a point where there are multiple White Stags or Deer Woman this means some pretty big boost on top of the arena boosts we already reviewed.
EX: 2 White Stags, 1 Not Deer, 1 Deer Woman on board. White Stag is already boosted +40 due to arena ability and now swinging for 60. If you play Tribal Boost for one aura that White Stag is now a 55LP/80HP spirit. Next turn you play one more Deer Woman, White Stag now 65LP/100HP. If you had a forest terra in play (not in the build) they are now 65LP/130HP thanks to Not Deer boost.
Aura & Artifact
This is the first time in a build we’ve included two Neutrality Totality, but feel like it’s warranted given the number of neutral/dual cards in the Spellbook. We also doubled on the Old Book’s Crying Tree which might kind of seem like overkill with the two Neutrality’s and two Prisms, but the ramp is most important on this build. As shown by the example above you want to get these beastie out ASAP to start boosting them to where opposing casters can’t overcome them you will need all the fuel you have.
From an aura breakdown we leaned pretty heavy Spirit with six versus only two for Forest given all the beasties but Wood Devil and Spirit and honestly Forest is just kind of splash for the added ramp to get beasties out quicker via Germinate and works through spellbook with Growth.
Weaknesses / Side Deck Options
This deck is ripe for alterations and honestly there are a ton of ways to go. First off, we just hit on the two neutrality and two artifacts which could probably be tweaked to get to 40 if needed. Of the beasties, the Lechuza’s are nice to have, but ultimately expendable if you wanted to emphasizes some different game styles or Beasties which also might meld well with these like Morgana or maybe Walking Sam.
We went heavy on beasties and light on spells, but this ratio could also be evened out to support more Morpheus, Possession, Fetish Artifact, or the more costly Permanent Possession. I think there’s enough Spirit aura in the build you could even play Resurrection From the Afterlife if you wanted, but thinking tactically from a spell perspective Ghost Forest would also play perfectly here with the fact it turn’s into a Forest Terra after being utilized as a spell.
Card List (42 Total Cards)
- White Stag x4
- Not Deer x4
- Deer Woman x4
- Lechuza x2
- Blue Mist x1
- Wood Devil of Coos Country x1
Spells & Potions
- Powerup Red x1
- New Year’s New Beginnings x1
- Bookmark x2
- Tribal Warcry x2
- Growth x1
- Germinate x3
- Morpheus x2
Aura, Artifacts & Terra
- Old Book’s Crying Tree x2
- Neutrality Totality Aura x2
- Prism Aura x2
- Spirit Aura x6
- Forest Aura x2