/ Pauper

Pauper Deck Tech: Golem Eggs

If you're not familiar with Mark Rosewater's seminal Making Magic story Timmy, Johnny, and Spike, go read it now. Seriously, you need to know this stuff. This post will be here when you get back.

All right.

I'm a classic Johnny, I love the jank. I love the jank so much that I even love it when horrible, janky things are being done to me. Weird interactions and strange win conditions just put a smile on my face; I don't care who the victim is. And if you weren't aware, there's a surprising amount of space in the Pauper metagame for interesting, janktastic decks.

When I took up Pauper, it was because it's the cheapest way to play constructed on MTGO but I didn't expect to really fall in love with the format. Boy, was I wrong. It's a very exciting time for me as a player because after several false starts in the past year, I really feel like Pauper's getting a foothold now.

The very first cards I added to my Cardsphere Wants on opening day were for one of my favorite Pauper decks, Golem Eggs.


Here's my list:

Golem Eggs

3 Ancient Den
4 Great Furnace
4 Seat of the Synod
4 Vault of Whispers
4 Chromatic Sphere
4 Chromatic Star
4 Conjurer's Bauble
4 Disciple of the Vault
4 Etherium Sculptor
1 Frantic Salvage
3 Galvanic Blast
3 Glaze Fiend
4 Golem Foundry
2 Lotus Petal
2 Prophetic Prism
4 Pyrite Spellbomb
2 Terrarion
4 Thoughtcast

2 Ancient Grudge
4 Electrickery
3 Krark-Clan Shaman
2 Nihil Spellbomb
4 Sunbeam Spellbomb

This deck's engine is the recursion of the low cost artifacts that sacrifice themselves for an activated ability. Many of these also draw cards when sacrificed.

Chromatic-Sphere Pyrite-Spellbomb

Etherium Sculptor makes these cheap or free to play, and there are also two free Lotus Petals.

Etherium-Sculptor Lotus-Petal

Conjurer's Bauble and Frantic Salvage get the cards back from the graveyard.

Conjurer-s-Bauble Frantic-Salvage

Artifacts being cast or entering the battlefield trigger two of the three win conditions. Each Golem Foundry in play gets a charge counter when artifact spells are cast. Remove three charge counters at instant speed to produce a 3/3 golem. Usually the golems go wide or become sacrifice fodder themselves, depending on the board state. If you're lucky enough to also have a Glaze Fiend on the battlefield, the golems pump them up just like all the artifacts entering the battlefield on your turn for a high power attacker in the air.

Golem-Foundry-Card Glaze-Fiend

The last of the three win conditions is the unassuming Disciple of the Vault, which has a damage trigger whenever an artifact hits the graveyard. Add this damage on top of incidental damage dealt by Pyrite Spellbombs or Galvanic Blasts, and you've got a lot of vectors for success that let you adapt to your opponent's deck.


I like having lots of options, especially ones that can show up out of nowhere. That happens quite often with Golem Eggs. Depending on how your library's ordered, you can pull off long chains of play-sac-recover with your artifacts and leave your opponent a stunned ruin.

On the other hand, the deck is kind of a glass cannon and if your library's not cooperating, you can suffer through some pretty powerless turns. And this can happen no matter how many Thoughtcasts and Chromatic Sphere/Stars you manage to play. I've seen some builds use Faithless Looting to try and help with this, but I just accept it as the price I have to pay for the occasional big fun win.

Other builds mix the deck with Urzatron lands and Fangren Marauders or bend further into red by including Scrapyard Salvo and Reckless Fireweaver.

As much variation as there is in the main deck, there's even more discussion about the correct sideboard choices. Personally I've found I need to have a bit of artifact hate in Ancient Grudge and the ability to board wipe Elves or tokens with Electrickery and Krark-Clan Shaman, but the last six are flex spots based on what you run into in your meta. For MTGO I stick with Nihil Spellbomb for an egg that deals with the yard and Sunbeam Spellbomb for when I'm stuck in a grindy game.

If you feel like you've got some Johnny/Jenny tendencies and want to try out pauper, I recommend you give this deck a shot. It's not too expensive in paper or digital, and I've never hit a mirror match with this one!

Hope I've gotten some of you interested!


Ted Rodney

Ted Rodney

Cardsphere Founder. Opened first booster of Revised in '94 and returned to the game during Scars block. Pauper, EDH, Modern, Standard Limited. Always happy to talk to the community.

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