This week in Magic: Rabble, Rabble!

goblin rabblemaster

With the Modern PTQ season winding down, I figured it was time to change gears and formats this week. This week we’re going back to Standard. With the introduction of M15, there has been little to no change as far as what decks are played. There has been a change as to what decks have remained dominant, though.


A quick look at what has been winning will show you that Mono Blue decks have been on the rise again along with variations of Mono Red. Selesnya and Jund variants aren’t too far behind. It’s definitely aggro season out there. If you’re brave enough to pilot control decks, my hat is off to you; it’s tough out there.


If you couldn’t tell by now, the deck we’ll be taking a look at this week is Rabble Red. I got the chance to play this a couple of weeks ago to much success at the local FNM. I definitely plan on running it again this week. Overall, the deck is a lot of fun to play. I knew there was something special about Goblin Rabblemaster when it came out. Following it’s performance at the Pro Tour, it just further surmised my feelings on it.


Here’s a quick look at what I’ll be running.


Rabble Red
4x Rakdos Cackler
4x Burning-Tree Emissary
4x Firedrinker Satyr
4x Foundry Street Denizen
4x Goblin Rabblemaster
3x Rubblebelt Maaka
3x Legion Loyalist
3x Firefist Striker
2x Ash Zealot
4x Stoke the Flames
3x Lightning Strike
1x Titan’s Strength
18x Mountain
3x Mutavault


1x Legion Loyalist
2x Titan’s Strength
2x Dynacharge
2x Mizzium Mortars
2x Magma Spray
2x Searing Blood
4x Eidolon of the Great Revel


One of the first things I said to myself is that this deck is fast. Secondly, Goblin Rabblemaster gets out of hand very fast if left unattended. First let’s talk about the deck’s speed.



This deck curves out like crazy, and the most expensive spell in your deck is technically a 4cc spell, but it has convoke. Most of the time you’re casting it for nothing. Ideally, you’ll cast one of your 4x one-drops, then the following turn your setting up your Goblin Rabblemaster with either support creatures thought your Emissary or Striker. On turn three, your hope is to play a Rabblemaster.


Depending on your board state you may want to play him on during your second main phase. Remember, if you play him during main phase one, you’ll be forced to swing with your new Goblin token. However, that’s where Stoke the Flames comes in. Not only is it a great reach card for creature removal or damage to the dome, but it helps you from having to attack with your new token if you know it’s going to die.



There is a reason that this deck is called Rabble Red. Goblin Rabblemaster gets out of hand very fast. Let’s break him down. According to his second ability, he makes babies. That’s right. The very first thing he does, as you enter combat, is make a Goblin token with haste. Due to it’s timing, Goblin Rabblemaster will force your token to attack. It was mentioned earlier, but keep this in mind before you cast him.


It’s the third ability that really makes him stand out. A lot of people disagree with me, but when I first read this guy he reminded me of another Goblin that gave people problems when it was running around in Standard.


Goblin Piledriver

So what’s the difference between this guy and Goblin Piledriver? A lot, but we all know WOTC doesn’t make the same mistake twice. I’m not saying that Goblin Piledriver was a mistake, but they don’t go around printing the same powerful cards over and over again (see Jace, the Mindsculptor).


The Rabblemaster may not have protection from Blue or get +2/+0 for each other attacking goblin, but the Piledriver didn’t have a Legion Loyalist by his side. Don’t forget that in this deck you have Foundry Street Denizen and Legion Loyalists as additional Goblins. Add that to the fact that the Rabblemaster makes Goblins, and he gets big very fast. With just a Denizen and a Loyalist in play. attacking with all three Goblins – make that four – will turn the Rabblemaster into a 5/2 first-striking Goblin with trample that can’t be blocked by tokens. All this because you attacked with your Loyalist.


They’re all one big happy family

Let’s face it, without the combination of Legion Loyalist and Goblin Rabblemaster, this deck would just be a pile of red cards. The Battalion trigger on the Loyalist means that there is a high chance that my Rabblemaster will live through any of your defenses. Not to mention, he’s going to slam you for some damage.


Thankfully, we don’t have to rely completely on the Loyalist. Thanks to the really low curve of the deck, it’s completely possible to empty your hand in the first few turns. There were definitely times when I didn’t get a chance to play the Rabblemaster. However, I’m playing so many creatures that come down so fast, it can be overwhelming in this format.


Not every deck is perfect

While I greatly enjoy playing this deck, it is not without it’s share of problems. Some of the matchups you need to be wary of are RW Burn, Mono Blue, and GW Aggro.


The matchup against burn is a problem because they can aim most of their spells at your guys. Searing Blood is absolutely devastating against you. It is a brilliant 2-for-1 against you all the time. There is nothing worse than going for a pump spell and having it countered by Searing Blood.


Mono Blue can not only outrace you, but Master of Waves has protection from Red. Don’t forget that Tidebinder Mage can tap down one of your creatures. It’s not a total loss, but it’s not fun either. The same can be said about GW Aggro. Not only can the deck throw down just as fast, but thanks to creatures like Voice of Resurgence, they’re crew gets fat very fast. Then you’ve got to deal with Wurms, and more Wurms. The outcome just does not look good.


Well that’s it for this week. If you think I left something out or have any questions, then leave a comment below.


About the author

Simeon is now the Community Manager for Battleground Games & Hobbies. If you have any questions or inquiries, then you can reach him at He is also an avid gamer who loves to play board games and video games. He graduated college with a degree in Political Science, and now serves the public by writing about games. You can check that out here. Don’t forget to “like” him on Facebook as well. It’ll update you on all of his newest content. Best of all, you can follow Simeon on Twitter (@SimeonCortezano) for some real time hilarity. Thanks for reading!


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