Hey, everyone!  It’s Micah here, back with another draft guide.  Skycrag is on the menu for today and oh man is it delicious.  Now, this isn’t a fancy seafood dinner.  Skycrag is a meat and potatoes meal with just a little bit of spice.  Enough of my terrible analogies!  Let’s get to it.

The Gameplan

The Skycrag gameplan is all about hitting the opponents face.  With weapons, units, spells, really anything will work here.  The early game is focused on sneaking in damage to trigger your spark cards to create difficult to deal with threats.  The late game tends to become a puzzle where you figure out how to push through the last few points of damage against Time based board stalls.

How do you get into the deck?

Like all good draft decks, start by 1st picking Mortar.  All jokes aside, Mortar is a defensible first pick, but you really get into this deck by picking very strong single faction Primal or Fire cards.  Cards like Jotun Cyclops and Thunderhoof Warrior.  Once you are in one of these factions and you start to see Clan Hero or Cloudsnake Breeder wheeling around the table, you’ll know that Skycrag as a faction pair is open.  Don’t underestimate cards like Cloudsnake Hatchling.  It is one of the best spark enablers in the format.

Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide

What to prioritize in Pack 2

This is the first pack where you will not encounter any Skycrag dual cards.  The Empty Throne was focused on the allied color pairs (Rakano, Elysian, Feln, Stonescar, and Combrei) and you will need to focus on individual Fire and Primal cards.  Aggression and evasion are the keys to a good Skycrag draft.  Cards like Cobalt Acolyte and Levitate are very good here.

Stun is a great way to get past defenders and enable Spark.  Jarral’s Frostkin and Flash Freeze are probably at their best in Skycrag.  Overwhelm units are also better with Omen’s then they were before.  Being able to trade with a unit and trigger spark is pretty valuable.

Permafrost
Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide
Torch
Skycrag Draft Guide

Packs 3 & 4

The last two packs should be focused on filling the holes in your curve, picking up removal and grabbing what fixing you can if you’re splashing.  Curving out (Plays on 1, 2, 3, 4 etc) is how Skycrag wins games.  Be sure not to neglect your curve!  Topaz Drake was recently buffed to have 1 more power and that makes it playable as a late game finisher now.

Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide

Subthemes – Spell Power/Spells Matter

While very cool, this theme is probably best left alone.  I do have dreams of Snowballs, Second Sight, and Boltcrafter Shaman.

Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide

Subthemes – 6(5)/3(2)’s – AKA Pit Fighter is secretly good.

What do Pit Fighter, Centaur Outrider, and Dusthoof Brawler all have in common?  If you guessed they are all unplayable you’re not only wrong, you’re leaving some very powerful finishers on the table.  They all have high single game win-percentages (69%, 62%, and 63% respectively).  Pit Fighter and Dusthoof Brawler have 6-7 win-percentages greater than 50% with Centaur Outrider at 45%.  There is a HUGE CAVEAT though.  They really need a way to give them flying for them to actually be good.  If you see one of these units you can speculate and grab them early, or you can grab the enablers first and pick this up later.  They currently go very late in the draft.

Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide
Skycrag Draft Guide

Traps – Excessive Splashing

The biggest trap I’ve personally fallen into with Skycrag is thinking that a splash is still free.  Unlike a deck that is base Time, Skycrag doesn’t have access to any of the tools that Praxis has.  Unless you are seriously lacking removal, or you have several Praxis/Elysian Strangers, that Purify should stay in your sideboard/pool.

Common Traps Cards

Forge Wolf (Set2 #2) – Spark is important but not enough to play this.
On the Hunt (Set2 #5) – I know some people love this card, but it’s only amazing on turn 1.
Mating Call (Set2 #110) – Do what I say, not what I do.
Scaly Gruan (Set1 #215) – Gruan is fine a controlling deck.
Yeti Snowchucker (Set2 #113) – Same deal as the Forge Wolf.  I have been destroyed by this before.  That doesn’t make it something you want to play all the time.
Grenade (Set2 #10) – This is much better in Stonescar where you can sacrifice for value.
Rakano Flagbearer (Set1 #27) – Too Weak, Too Lacklusterer.
Sparkbot (Set2 #13) – See Scaly Gruan and Grenade above.
Twinbarrel (Set2 #16) – Throwing this on a Dusthoof Brawler is the dream I guess?  Dream bigger.
Calderan Cradle (Set2 #192) – I’VE TRIED
Serpent Mount (Set2 #124) – This is like a reverse Pit Fighter/Acolyte combo, but the tempo loss severe.  Your opponent has an entire turn to react and deal with the Serpent.
Storm Glider (Set2 #195) – This is playable in Skycrag, but it’s not something you want to play on curve.  This is a finisher.
Decimate (Set2 #200) – I’m not sure what would make this playable.  The gap between 6 and 7 power is canyon sized.  The gap between 6 and 10 is from here to the moon.

Some of these cards ARE playable, just not in Skycrag Aggro.  Feel free to tell me why I’m incredibly wrong in the comments.

7-win Example Decklists

7-1

2 Cloudsnake Hatchling
1 Oni Ronin
1 Ruthless Stranger
1 Dragonbreath
2 Rakano Stranger
1 Rampage
1 Skycrag Stranger
3 Static Bolt
1 Wild Cloudsnake
1 Yeti Snowslinger
1 Clan Hero
2 Skyrider Vanguard
1 Audacious Bandit
1 Jarrall’s Frostkin
1 Jotun Cyclops
1 Magma Javelin
1 Mortar
1 Serpent Trainer
1 Watcher of the Big Ones
2 Pouncing Drake
1 Swindle
8 Fire Sigil
9 Primal Sigil
1 Cobalt Monument

7-1

1 Blind Storyteller
1 Cloudsnake Hatchling
1 Grenadin Drone
1 Oni Ronin
1 Pummel
1 Champion of Fury
1 Combrei Stranger
1 Dragonbreath
1 East-Wind Herald
1 Rakano Outlaw
5 Clan Hero
1 Cobalt Acolyte
1 Flash Freeze
1 Granite Ring
1 Grenade
1 Burn Out
2 Magma Javelin
1 Outlands Brute
1 Swift Stranger
1 Centaur Raidleader
1 Gun Down
1 Shogun of the Wastes
1 Cannonbearer
9 Fire Sigil
7 Primal Sigil
1 Skycrag Banner

7-1

1 Firemane Cub
1 Oni Ronin
1 Pummel
1 Temper
1 Dragonbreath
1 Feln Stranger
1 Lightning Strike
1 Praxis Stranger
1 Rockslide
1 Scaly Gruan
1 Wild Cloudsnake
1 Yeti Snowslinger
1 Clan Hero
1 Foothills Alpha
3 Granite Acolyte
1 Icebow
1 Stoneshaker
2 Stormcrasher
1 Ridgeline Watcher
1 Storm Glider
1 Thunderhoof Warrior
1 Aerial Ace
1 Gun Down
1 Cannonbearer
1 Iceknuckle Jotun
1 Stonescar Maul
1 Araktodon
8 Fire Sigil
7 Primal Sigil

Cards I’m happy to play in this archetype:

Common

Uncommon

Rare and Legendary

1 Cloudsnake Hatchling (Set2 #103)
1 Grenadin Drone (Set1 #5)
1 Levitate (Set1 #190)
1 Oni Ronin (Set1 #13)
1 Temper (Set1 #10)
1 Torch (Set1 #8)
1 Yeti Spy (Set1 #191)
1 Young Gun (Set2 #3)
1 Backlash (Set1 #200)
1 Blinkwolf (Set2 #7)
1 Dragonbreath (Set2 #108)
1 East-Wind Herald (Set1 #201)
1 Lightning Strike (Set1 #197)
1 Ornate Katana (Set1 #23)
1 Pyre Adept (Set1 #21)
1 Rampage (Set1 #17)
1 Smith’s Hammer (Set2 #8)
1 Static Bolt (Set1 #194)
1 Violent Gust (Set1 #205)
1 Yeti Snowslinger (Set1 #203)
1 Clan Hero (Set2 #190)
1 Cobalt Acolyte (Set1 #212)
1 Crafty Yeti (Set2 #116)
1 Flash Freeze (Set1 #209)
1 Foothills Alpha (Set2 #117)
1 Granite Acolyte (Set1 #31)
1 Icebow (Set2 #118)
1 Rally (Set1 #33)
1 Rebel Sharpshooter (Set1 #30)
1 Skysnapper (Set1 #208)
1 Stormcrasher (Set2 #121)
1 Wisdom of the Elders (Set1 #218)
1 Audacious Bandit (Set2 #17)
1 Centaur Outrider (Set1 #35)
1 Guerrilla Fighter (Set1 #36)
1 Jarrall’s Frostkin (Set1 #220)
1 Jotun Cyclops (Set2 #122)
1 Magma Javelin (Set1 #41)
1 Mortar (Set2 #194)
1 Recogulator (Set1 #37)
1 Ridgeline Watcher (Set2 #123)
1 Serpent Trainer (Set1 #219)
1 Thunderhoof Warrior (Set2 #25)
1 Aerial Ace (Set1 #235)
1 Dusthoof Brawler (Set1 #49)
1 Gun Down (Set2 #26)
1 Pit Fighter (Set2 #27)
1 Skywalk Instructor (Set2 #128)
1 Cannonbearer (Set2 #31)
1 Cirso’s Meddling (Set2 #132)
1 Hellfire Rifle (Set1 #55)
1 Iceknuckle Jotun (Set2 #133)
1 Topaz Drake (Set2 #198)

1 Firemane Cub (Set2 #1)
1 Hearty Stranger (Set2 #104)
1 Hidden Shiv (Set2 #4)
1 Permafrost (Set1 #193)
1 Ruthless Stranger (Set1 #11)
1 Snowcrust Yeti (Set2 #105)
1 Unstable Form (Set1 #189)
1 Warhelm (Set1 #14)
1 Bladekin Apprentice (Set1 #22)
1 Borderlands Waykeeper (Set1 #517)
1 Cloudsnake Breeder (Set2 #107)
1 Flame Blast (Set1 #2)
1 Kaleb’s Choice (Set2 #188)
1 Piercing Shot (Set1 #25)
1 Rakano Outlaw (Set1 #20)
1 Rockslide (Set2 #189)
1 Talon Dive (Set2 #112)
1 Wild Cloudsnake (Set1 #195)
1 Assembly Line (Set1 #29)
1 Fevered Scout (Set1 #512)
1 Granite Ring (Set2 #9)
1 Hipshot (Set2 #11)
1 Ice Sprite (Set1 #214)
1 Jawbone Hatchet (Set2 #12)
1 Oni Quartermaster (Set1 #32)
1 Polymorph (Set1 #211)
1 Skyrider Vanguard (Set2 #120)
1 Tundra Explorer (Set1 #204)
1 Cloud of Ash (Set1 #39)
1 Furnace Mage (Set1 #40)
1 Grenadin Cannoneer (Set2 #20)
1 Hunter’s Harpoon (Set2 #193)
1 Morningstar (Set1 #510)
1 Outlands Brute (Set2 #18)
1 Outlands Sniper (Set1 #42)
1 Rebel Illuminator (Set1 #43)
1 Soaring Stranger (Set1 #229)
1 Storm Glider (Set2 #195)
1 Swift Stranger (Set2 #24)
1 Windshaper (Set1 #230)
1 Yeti Troublemaker (Set1 #222)
1 Centaur Raidleader (Set1 #50)
1 Elysian Trailblazer (Set1 #228)
1 Jotun Hurler (Set1 #227)
1 Psionic Savant (Set1 #360)
1 Skycrag Wyvarch (Set1 #247)
1 Stonepowder Heretic (Set2 #29)
1 Swindle (Set2 #129)
1 Crowd Favorite (Set1 #58)
1 Frontline Cyclops (Set1 #53)
1 Lumbering Gruan (Set2 #134)
1 North-Wind Herald (Set1 #240)
1 Sapphire Dragon (Set1 #236)
1 Stonescar Maul (Set1 #52)
1 Adaptive Predator (Set2 #135)
1 Granite Monument (Set1 #423)
1 Cobalt Monument (Set1 #418)

1 Pyroknight (Set1 #16)
1 Brazen Daredevil (Set1 #19)
1 Champion of Fury (Set2 #187)
1 Charchain Flail (Set1 #3)
1 Cloudsnake Saddle (Set1 #199)
1 Maelstrom Bell (Set2 #109)
1 Whispering Wind (Set1 #202)
1 Censari Brigand (Set1 #34)
1 Cloudsnake Harrier (Set2 #114)
1 Eye of Winter (Set1 #210)
1 Shogun’s Scepter (Set1 #26)
1 Vadius, Clan Father (Set2 #191)
1 Deranged Dinomancer (Set1 #223)
1 Groundbreaker (Set2 #21)
1 Skyward Seer (Set2 #125)
1 Steelfang Chakram (Set1 #38)
1 Torgov, Icecap Trader (Set2 #126)
1 Watcher of the Big Ones (Set2 #130)
1 Crystallize (Set1 #232)
1 Magus of the Mist (Set1 #233)
1 Obliterate (Set1 #48)
1 Pearlescent Drake (Set2 #127)
1 Pouncing Drake (Set2 #28)
1 Shogun of the Wastes (Set1 #51)
1 Soulfire Drake (Set1 #47)
1 West-Wind Herald (Set1 #231)
1 Flamestoker (Set2 #32)
1 General Izalio (Set1 #56)
1 Hatchery Hunter (Set1 #237)
1 Jarrall Iceheart (Set1 #239)
1 Thunderstrike Dragon (Set1 #243)
1 Towering Stranger (Set2 #196)
1 Worldpyre Phoenix (Set1 #54)
1 Mistveil Drake (Set1 #242)
1 Rimescale Draconus (Set1 #246)
1 Steelbound Dragon (Set1 #60)
1 Strength of the Pack (Set1 #367)
1 Kaleb, Uncrowned Prince (Set1 #61)
1 Molot & Nakova (Set2 #199)
1 Sindok, Rage Incarnate (Set2 #34)

That’s it for Skycrag!  Think I got something wrong, or didn’t mention something important?  Comment below and let me know!  Be sure to check out our other Draft Guides and Draft Snaps.

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