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The best MTG Arena decks in 2024 for every format

Whether you're just starting out or looking to conquer everything from Alchemy to Standard.

Image credit: Marta Nael/Wizards of the Coast

The best MTG Arena decks will let you go into the slickest version of digital Magic: The Gathering and come out on top, climb the ranks and win more prizes. While MTG Arena used to be limited in its formats, it’s really grown since its release in 2019; there are not only more formats than ever now, but even MTG Arena-specific variants.

Best MTG Arena decks

Because of this, newer players might feel a little bit overwhelmed. After all, not only is learning how to play MTG a fair amount of information, but understanding and mastering different formats on top of that can all feel like too much.

To make things a little bit easier to parse, we’ve broken up our list into formats. We simply picked the top MTG Arena deck for each format, along with an explanation of how to use it and the cards to look out for. The only exception to this is the first entry, which is more of an ethos for beginners looking for the best MTG Arena deck to start with rather than a specific deck.

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Keep in mind that the best deck in each MTG Arena format changes incredibly quickly, but the MTG Arena decks we’ve chosen here will serve you well regardless.

1. Red Deck Wins

The best MTG Arena deck for beginners

If you're just starting out in MTG Arena, going on the aggressive is a good strategy. | Image credit: Wizards of the Coast

If you’re new to MTG Arena, or Magic: The Gathering in general, then one of the first decks you’re likely to do well with is an aggro deck. While other colours can manage this, particularly white, the heaviest hitter is red. Red is a MTG colour that’s known for its aggression, which means there are a lot of one and two-mana creatures that tend to have haste. In the early turns you’ll often want to play these and instantly attack with them, but you can also wait until you can play a few creatures in a single turn to turn the tables.

Red’s aggression means that you often get a lot of instant and sorcery spells that don’t cost much mana and can deal direct damage to creatures or even other players. When you combine these with ways to exile cards to play in later turns, and the sheer force of constantly attacking, you can end up with a deck that’s simply faster than most decks can deal with.

If you’re just starting out in MTG Arena or MTG, keep your creatures and spells cheap and just go for all-out aggression. These decks can struggle if the game goes on too long, but you’re still more likely to win a lot more than you lose in the lower ranks of MTG Arena.

2. Four-Colour Control

The best MTG Arena Standard deck

This powerful Standard deck relies on you milling Portal to Phyrexia into the graveyard, fetching it with Abuelo’s Awakening and then multiplaying it using Hulking Metamorph. The result? Victory! | Image credit: Wizards of the Coast

The Standard MTG Arena deck here isn’t one you’ll see on our list of the best Standard decks in paper Magic: The Gathering. That’s not because it’s bad on the tabletop, but because MTG Arena is a bit like the Wild West - far more so now that Outlaws of Thunder Junction has released. Four-Colour Control has plenty of ways to counter spells, but can also remove problems with cards like Temporary Lockdown.

The aim is to mill your Portal to Phyrexia into your graveyard, then bring it back with Abuelo’s Awakening and copy it with Hulking Metamorph. This allows you to steal creatures from your opponent’s graveyard, and is an entertaining win condition that you don’t often see in Standard. You can also occasionally win by milling out your opponent using Jace, the Perfected Mind, but that probably won’t happen too often.

3. Golgari Midrange

The best MTG Arena Alchemy deck

There are just two cards in Golgari Midrange with three copies - Honest Rutstein and Assemble the Team- while the rest tend to appear just as single copies. | Image credit: Wizards of the Coast

Midrange decks specialise in being slightly too hard for aggro decks to overcome, and a little bit too tricky for control decks to lock out of the game. They’re a good middle ground for those who like a lot of different potential plays in their deck, and Golgari Midrange does a good job of showing why. There are a huge number of single cards in this deck instead of the usual sets of four - in fact, there are only two cards that have three copies.

Honest Rutstein allows you to return a creature card from your graveyard to your hand, but also makes it so that your creature spells cost one less mana to cast. That goes well with the huge array of two-mana and three-mana creatures the deck contains to allow for some really explosive turns.

You’ve then got Assemble the Team, which allows you to search the top third of your library for a card and put it into your hand. This basically means that you’ll nearly always be able to find the card you’re looking for, and that it’ll likely cost a little less to cast.

A lot of the cards in the deck can make mana too - which means you can cast big game-ending spells like Tyrranax Rex and The World Spell when you’ve had enough fun and need to win.

4. Kaya, Intangible Slayer

The best MTG Arena Brawl deck

Led by its eponymous planeswalker, Kaya, Intangible Slayer siphons the life out of your opponents, while providing you with cards and copies of creatures. It's formidable. | Image credit: Wizards of the Coast

This MTG Arena deck is white and black and has Kaya, Intangible Slayer at the helm. As a planeswalker with Hexproof, Kaya is already a pretty strong start all on her own. She can siphon life from your opponents, allow you to draw cards, and even exile enemy creatures and enchantments and allow you to make copies of them. All three of these abilities are powerful, but you’ll usually be using her to draw cards to gain access to more options when facing down big threats.

The deck is filled to the brim with incredible removal spells like Cut Down, Infernal Grasp and Legions to Ashes, which makes it very strong against creature decks. The main aim is to basically outlast your opponent by having more removal than them, then using their own cards against them or playing Sheoldred, the Apocalypse and drawing your way to victory. It’s a lot of fun, but only if you don’t want to cast many creatures.

5. Mono Black Zombies

The best MTG Arena Historic deck

As you'd expect from a good zombies deck, Mono Black Zombies works by flooding the board with the terrifying monsters, while also buffing them up with your supporting spells. | Image credit: Wizards of the Coast

Much like the Cranberries classic song, Zombies are, in fact, in your head. They’re also pretty much always going to be good thanks to the incredible mix of low-cost, hard-to-kill creatures, card advantage and general buffers. This MTG Arena deck uses Cryptbreaker to not only create tokens and fill up the graveyard, but also draw cards at will as well. Death Baron and Lord of the Accursed work together to make your zombies substantially stronger, while Diregraf Colossus and Champion of the Perished can both become huge with good timing.

The deck is incredibly strong and, thanks to Murderous Rider, Dark Salvation and Languish, has fairly good removal as well. The whole deck is built to last; each individual card is strong on its own, but if you can put a couple of creatures into play and keep playing more, you’ll find that the deck snowballs into something terrifying.

If you’re after a deck that’s fun to play and incredibly resilient, Mono Black Zombies is it. It’s heavy on rare cards, but more affordable than a lot of MTG Arena decks.

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