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Peasant Primer: AD and EOG Edition

Article by noverb - January 4, 2021

Hello everyone! I am noverb and while you may be familiar with me from my other articles or my twitch stream, today I am extremely happy to be posting this on Eternal Warcry! Today I am writing, once again, to hype up the Peasant format in Eternal. This is in preparation for Jedi_EJ’s Peasant Charity Tournament on January 9th, 2021! So hopefully you will come out of this article with a deck you want to play or at least an idea of the potential meta. For those new to peasant, here are the rules of deckbuilding:

You may only include commons and uncommons in your deck. Cards from Campaigns are banned. This promotes accessibility. Cards that create or transform into random cards are banned. The ability to create rares and legendaries break the nature of the format. These include:

  • The Conjuring Cycle
  • Unstable Form
  • Good Idea At The Time
  • Cards from Empire of Glass that add random cards to your market such as Scrapmetal Fury.

That's it! Peasant is an amazing format that has a super low barrier to entry. No campaigns need to be purchased and no saving shiftstone for all those legendaries and rares. Even the newest of players can hop right in and join the fun! There have been two other Peasant tournaments so far, and while I’ll be recapping most of the decks in this article, you may want to see how things played out:

Since then we have seen two major sets drop and a slew of balance changes to add more great archetypes. The first huge change is that we now have access to markets with the Etchings cycle and the two-drop Grafters from Empire of Glass. This adds a lot of consistency to decks centered around one or two key cards. Cards that come to mind are Eremot's Machinations, Touch of Force/Flash Fire, and Kodosh Sees All. Let’s take a look at the previously known archetypes and see what they got from the new sets.

Elysian Fliers

Additions: Shifting Illusion and Glen Scout.
Two great fliers that have early and late game potential. As we’ve seen Plunder is an amazing mechanic and adding it to a relevant body in this deck is great. I slotted Shifting Illusion into the Snowstorm Druid slot. I think Snowstorm Druid still has a place in the deck to prevent our Majestic Skies from being removed, I’m just not sure if it’s better than the other one drops. Glen Scout is just a clean swap for Locust as it has the same body.

Market: I went with Speed Grafter here. I feel like the Time Market just has more options than Primal. Then came the choice of Time Etchings or Grafter and what to cut. The problem with Etchings is that our units are split right down the middle and it asks us to stop some of the aggression to make it work. The cut ended up being Calibrate. Although, I’m not sure if that’s correct. Calibrate was our “Seek Power” slot allowing us to cheese a bit on power while also being more chances to hit Majestic Skies. It was likely a greedy cut and I would review that decision if this is the deck you want to play.

Other Notable Options: So it’s worthy of note that Forbidden Research was printed in Argent Depths. I was toying around with a variant of the deck that cut/trimmed some of the other looting fliers to play Research in order to splash Eremot's Machinations in the Market. That might be me going too deep in the sauce, but if you like sauce, there ya go!

Summary: Fliers are a powerful archetype that got great new additions. A perfect deck for newer players trying to do powerful things without the extra complexity of a lot of moving pieces. Be on watch for Display of Creation, though, it will rip your Units from the skies!

FTJ Armory

Additions: Desert Alchemist and Gravity Glove
Gravity Glove can do a neat impression of Edge of Prophecy so I don’t mind replacing a single Furyblade with it. We can get it with Calibrate and Bladecrafter and bring it back the same ways we bring back Edge. It’s way more modal than Edge and I’m excited to see what it can do. Desert Alchemist, at the very least, replaces Scorpion Wasp. The flying on Wasp is largely irrelevant in this format and costing one less is amazing. That’s not even mentioning Plunder! The other two slots were the last two Torches. I think Alchemist answers more than Torch and the weapons cover the rest.

Market: This was an EASY Coveted Gemstone! It ramps you to Edge and grabs great options out of the market. Easy includes are Ancient Excavator, Kodosh Sees All, Pillar of Amar, and Shugo's Hooked Sword. I feel like most Gemstone Markets will be similar due to the small number of options, but since all the options are powerful, I don’t mind. The cuts were the two Ancient Excavators (previously Throne Warden) and two Amber Acolytes as they both serve similar purposes to the Gemstone so the feel of the deck didn’t change much.

Other Notable Options: FTS Sac was a huge pain in the first Peasant tournament, and while it may not be as prevalent after the nerfs, unit swarms are still an issue. With that in mind Splashing primal for Lightning Storm (and going deeper in the sauce for Touch of Wild) can help our go wide matchup. Otherwise we find ourselves breaking big weapons on small idiots over and over. You can use the Forgeborn slot in the Market for Stonescar Maul instead. Both are for similar matchups but they have different weaknesses. I was also looking into Heirloom Blade as a one-of to search for with Bladecrafter. The card was buffed around the time of the second tournament and it piqued my interest. Being able to go Bladecrafter + play a 4/4 weapon on turn six in dire situations is rather interesting. Sometimes you just don’t have that extra turn, or power, to wait for Edge of Prophecy.

Summary: Armory is a deck near and dear to my heart, and while immensely powerful, it does have some glaring weaknesses. The deck received some good tech and probably makes better use out of the Market than any other deck. Be on the lookout for Display of Menace, that card HURTS!

FTS Sacrifice

Additions: Gleaming Grenadin and Grisly Contest
Arguably the deck got more tools than just those cards, but these made the most sense without changing the core of the deck. Grisly Contest let’s us get more removal for the same slots and allows combust to slide into the Market. Gleaming Grenadin came in for Unfamiliar Interloper and two Nahid's Distillations.

Market: Sacrifice gained a lot from Market access, and there are tons of ways to do it. My first inclination is put in some silver bullets and a gamewinning card like Mysterious Waystone. In order to make room for the Vine Grafter I cut the Madness and slid it into the Market anyway. Madness is a great card, just totally dead in some matchups. Other ways to run the Market are moving the expensive cards like Machinations and Feartracker to the Market in favor of adding to early consistency. Or maybe bring all four Interlopers in and add a Display of Menace and Display of Ambition to the Market. That’s the kinda spice I like.

Other Notable Options: Corrosive Dagger comes to mind as a card that, with some tweaking to the power, could be a very fine addition. There’s an alternative version of this deck that uses Shoaldredger coupled with Markmaker to close out games. Both cards inherently work with the strategy of the deck so you don’t have to make any big jumps for their inclusion. Not to mention Shoaldredger can come back from Machinations if you play it right.

Summary: FTS Sac lost a lot of steam thanks to nerfs to many of its cards. That being said, it still has great grind potential. It gained some solid options and can utilize the Market well. I could see this deck coming back.

Xenan Lifeforce a.k.a. Cult Aspirations

Additions: Curtain Call
This should be a surprise to no one, but Curtain Call is going to be siiiiick in this deck. The deck was already wicked fast, playing 4/3s (now 4/4s) on turn one. Now with the power of an additional Lifestealing trick, it’s even harder to race. Curtain Call was highly considered for a pre-tournament ban due to its sheer power, but it may be needed to check the Fire menace.

Market: As has been a recurring theme, Vine Grafter seems a little too good. You’ll see a lot of my decks with Vine Grafter due to the strength of Regen. Couple that with the ability to grab Machinations and replay your Grafter to go to the Market again and you are in business!

Other Notable Additions: Venomous Nightshade was something that raised my brow when looking for new additions. It plays a similar role to Premonition Wisp by making a token when we gain life. It sees quite a few ultimates thanks to the nature of the deck, but only hitting itself and Vine Grafter make it a little too corner-case. Don’t give up hope, though, you’ll see this card in a later deck.

Summary: I’d still credit this as one of the most powerful aggressive decks in the format. Combining speed, heavy hitters, and life gain, the Cult has a lot going for it. Now, with access to Markets we have some late game inevitability as well.


Additions: Unfortunately, aside from getting access to a Market, Rats didn’t get anything to be excited about.

Market: Our Market card of choice, which no other deck will choose, is Exotic Purchase. We can search for it with the Display of Knowledge and Calibrate, it can market twice on its own, and it has some powerful options to choose from. Pack Hunt does a bad impression of Bazaar Stampede. Cirso's Choice seems like good utility for a number of situations. Machinations is worse here than usual, but I can definitely see lines where you would grab it. Turn Back Time could see a lot of play, grabbing whatever you need that has been dealt with. And Display of Instinct is for those of you playing the Fire variant. If not, just slot in a Backlash or some other counter.

Other Notable Options: Last tournament I was really enthralled with Display of Menace and TheBryanStage took my Menace Rats deck to a Top 8 finish. So the deck I’m listing here is the Menace version. However this deck is perfectly serviceable as a TPS deck without the Fire, and you can find an older version (also piloted by Bryan) from Tournament 1.

Summary: Like in Throne, Rats is always a contender. Having access to a go-wide strategy alongside being able to summon some big bodies real fast, a lot of decks have trouble answering this deck. The most common cause of loss is just the pieces not coming together and it sputtering out. Overall a strong deck and one I would recommend if you want to do wild and wacky things.

JPS Hero

Additions: Deathwing and Ghastly Perfume
I know I touched on Hero of the People in a previous article, but I don’t think I gave a decklist for it because I couldn’t settle on one myself. With these two new additions, though, I think that JPS is the home for our Hero. Deathwing is an absolute powerhouse and giving those abilities to a Hero is fantastic. Ghastly Perfume is just the killer spell. These two are huge inclusions to the Hero shell.

Market: Vine Grafter is at it again giving your units Regen and giving you access to a great Market. Sabotage and Felrauk's Choice protect you from what your opponent is trying to do. Display of Purpose is your catch-all do everything spell. Secret Passage and Haunting Scream are great ways to close out the game.

Other Notable Options: The hardest part about Hero decks is you just want to play all the factions to get all the abilities. Losing out on Time is the hardest, though, because Machinations is better in this deck than it is in most. Aside from considering a Time splash or switching Primal for Time, the most interesting considerations are for the Reweave package. I trimmed down on Outcast Elites in favor of a better package due to Elites having few Unseen allies. You could easily revert that change.

Summary: Hero is likely one of the first decks you made when starting Eternal and this format brings Eternal down to a level where you can play Hero again. With a powerful Reweave package and strong standalone cards I think Hero may have enough to go the distance. However be wary about playing Hero without Aegis as Defile could ruin your day.

Honorable Mentions

There are quite a few decks that exist in the format that I didn’t cover for different reasons. Some I don’t think are as good anymore given the lack of additions from newer sets like Combrei Aggro. Other decks I just couldn’t decide on a build or didn’t know if they even wanted a Market like Hooru/JPS Curse Control and Stonescar/Menace Dragons. Or the archetype was just not something I wanted to fiddle with, looking at you Mono-Fire.

Not saying Mono-Fire is bad, in fact it may be the best archetype in the format. It definitely got a lot of new additions from the new sets like Eager Deputy, Gleaming Grenadin, Badlands Survivalist, Autotread, Darkblade Cutpurse, Flameheart Patroller, Volatile Grenadin, Beacon of War, Corrosive Dagger, Mightweaver...etc. But a combination of it not being my style of deck and just too many options to decide on one build left me without the ability to truly grasp the possible decks for this article. Mono-Fire has a ton of individuality to it, and like we saw in the finals of the last tournament, the deck can really be teched to how you want to play.

The New Brews

With the new sets came new archetypes, sweet build around cards, new synergies, and new tribes. I’ve made some prototypes of a lot of these new strategies for you to try out. Big thanks to TheOverMaster, Prackalakin, and spiffirific for their help with ideas and shells!

Argenport Armory

AP Armory was the first shell I made after the release of Argent Depths. It’s a deck that I had hoped to throw down in the third Peasant tournament had it happened closer to the release of that set. The shell is based around cards you are likely already familiar with: Siphoner Paladin and Backbreaker. The deck also features one of the cutest combos in Peasant: Turn 1 Rat Cage into Turn 2 Heirloom Blade. Follow that up with Siphoner Paladin and your opponent will be running for the hills.

Market: Before EoG my market was Justice Etchings: Reweave, Kemmo's Blueprints, Slay, Mantle of Justice, Steel Legion. That Reweave came with a Trickshot Ruffian for some rough blowouts, or just another Paladin. Post EoG I am way too into Vine Grafter, and it’s not like you lose power by switching to a Shadow Market. The card I really wanted to make space for was Hookblade Infuser. It just feels like it fits the strategy so well. Now you could be more reasonable and play Marsh Dragon instead, but I like spice.

Other Notable Options: The removal suite can be teched to your playstyle, moving things in and out of the Market as needed. The sacrifice fodder can also be changed around a bit. Notably you can use Unfamiliar Interloper to splash for a third faction. This can be quite useful in a lot of ways. Primal gives you access to sweepers like Lightning Storm and Cyber Combustion as well as Touch of Wild to slam through those infinite blockers. Fire has things like Display of Ambition, Voprex’s Choice, Combust (although maybe worse than Grisly Contest), and Smuggler's Stash. Time brings in the always useful Eremot's Machinations, Lumen Shepherd, Ancient Excavator and other ways to bring back weapons. You can go even deeper with your pal noverb and just play all the Factions. Splash for Edge of Prophecy, Sorcerer's Wand, you name it! Interloper can make your dreams come true!

Summary: AP Armory is a synergy driven Relic Weapon deck that can grind really well. Unlike FTJ, AP doesn’t have the recursion to make one weapon last forever. The weapons it does make are hardy enough, and can be made bigger with Siphoner Paladin. The drain from Stonepowder Alchemist, Feartracker, and Mysterious Waystone give the deck the reach it needs to close out games. Overall a strong deck that I would suggest for those looking to grind out some games.

Skycrag Grenadins

Grenadins got some great inclusions from AD and EoG. The deck can produce a lot of Grenadins between Gleaming, Drone, Spark Hatcher, and Corrosive Dagger. It utilizes Grubbot and Kindling Carver to make sure you are stocked up on cards. Beacon of War is a sweet reusable anthem that acts like a Crystallize in the late game. Steam Blast and Disassembler give you some nice reach in the main deck, with more options in the Market.

Market: As mentioned, the Market adds a lot of reach. Flame Blast and Kaleb's Choice are nice reactionary cards to problematic threats. Beacon of War, Battledriver, and Flash Fire are all great finishers depending on the state of affairs. I considered Touch of Force for a while in the Flash Fire slot as it plays a similar role if Touch is used on Steam Blast. The option exists for a Primal Market with the Rage Grafter (who is a Grenadin), but the options there aren’t as strong.

Other Notable Options: Cyber Combustion is something I was really considering, but in most cases it answers problems the deck already has no issue with. Although I may be wrong about that. It could be instrumental in certain matchups/stalls. I really wanted to make this a Menace deck given my fondness for Display of Menace, but the power base definitely gets stretched with it. You get access to sweet cards like Combust and Blightpetal as well. But cuts would have to be made, probably something like Corrosive Dagger as it becomes a lot worse. It’s an interesting idea. I would love to see someone run with it.

Summary: Grenadins is a go-wide aggro deck with the card draw engines to grind through the mid-game and the burn to reach past control decks. The deck should have reasonable game against every deck in the meta.

Combrei Ramp

The time has come! Not only has Ramp finally gotten the payoffs it needed, but it also has a better ramp package and a market! Coretap Maximizer is a MONSTER when it comes to ramping and, if the opponent can’t answer it, you are off to the races. Not to mention that it does a great job at holding the fort. From the Heavens was one of the first cards spoiled in EoG and I was so excited to build a ramp deck in Peasant just to cast it. The card is absolutely amazing.

Market: Coveted Gemstone is the perfect Market card for this deck. It ramps you, combos with Maximizer, and gets you the cards you wanted to play anyway. Excavator, Kodosh Sees All, and Pillar of Amar are the easy includes. I figure you want one weapon, so Ghostblade has it’s uses, although there are other options. The last slot is pretty loose as there aren’t a ton of options in this market. Mask is a nice addition if you go to the market a second time to ensure your fatties are beating down properly.

Other Notable Options: The main changes would be to the removal package. Vanquish and Fall Short deserve honorable mention depending on the meta, but right now the removal is set up for the Aggro decks. Edict of Kodosh is a hard call towards a meta filled with Regen. We’ll see how right I am.

I do think that Sabre of Progress does a good Minotaur Ambassador impression. While Spiffy talked me down, I really do want to try that in a version of the deck. Aside from pure Combrei you have some other cool options. Edge of Prophecy and Sorcerer's Wand immediately come to mind as Market cards that may be worth splashing. Both bringing their share of additional removal. That may likely be better than the pure combrei build.

Summary: For those who want to go big or go home, Ramp is here for you. The deck does powerful things, but they are also very telegraphed. A well placed Disjunction or negate could spell defeat. Ramp has always been high risk, high reward, and it’s no different here. If this is the deck you bring, may the draws be with you.

Sentinel Bond

Sentinels were another pushed tribe that seems to have enough cards to form a core now. The deck relies on synergy a bit more than most with the big Bond Sentinels needing smaller high-power Sentinels to help them come online. However the deck has explosive potential that could really cause some havoc in the early game with a slew of big beaters. The deck hosts a nice package of relics to make full use out of Coretap Maximizer and Monolith Guardian. Laser Blast is a sweet removal spell especially with the likes of Maximizer using its Deadly effect on even the biggest threats.

Market: Time Etchings and Gemstone tag-team here to make sure you hit your power in time while also having access to a great market. Infinite Hourglass stops those pesky permafrosts while also replacing Gemstone as your active Relic. Porcelain Mask gives overwhelm to your army of stone slabs. The rest of the Market is just filled with your usual powerhouses, as if you needed more.

Other Notable Options: There’s less you want in this deck than most, but there are still a few things worthy of note. Desert Alchemist provides early defense while fixing your power. Waystone Gate would make sure you hit power drops and provide you with a beefcake later in the game, but it is a bit slow for the strategy. You could argue them over Amber Lock, but I really want to see how Amber Lock does in this shell. Barricade Basher is an interesting choice for more power early, but discarding a card is a real downside with how little card draw this deck has.

Summary: Sentinels can do very powerful things, but a lot of the power comes from stringing the synergies of different cards together. The real weakness to this deck will be the awkward draws and hands that just...don’t go off. In a lot of ways the deck is very similar to Rats. If you want Rats but in a more straightforward, face-smashy shell, this deck is for you.


Honestly how could you look through Empire of Glass and not want to at least TRY to build Dredge? For those unaware, Dredge is a term coined from a Magic: The Gathering mechanic of the same name that involves putting cards from your deck into your discard pile and doing discard shenanigans. Eternal has had Dredge-esque strategies in the past and you will see some of the cards, like Haunting Scream, making a comeback in this deck. With payoffs like Umbren Deathwatcher and Shoal Dredger, I had to try this deck out.

Market: This Market includes cards that I haven’t been including in my other Shadow Markets. Felrauk's Choice will hopefully stop them from answering our large threats. False Demise plays a similar game to Haunting Scream and Dark Return with a bit of extra value. Shoal Stirrings has some good targets and can get you right back into the Market by grabbing your Vine Grafter that just died. Vine Grafter dies, right? I’m sure it dies sometimes. I’d also like to make the honorable mention to Blood Quill, because Theo wanted that in the Market so badly.

Other Notable Options: One card that got tossed around was Gorgon Fanatic. A huge nod to Scream’s old best friend. I absolutely wouldn’t fault you if you wanted to include that card. You could include the “play when discarded” cards: Icy Gaze and Faceless One. There are a few other self-discard options like Malaise and Fatal Misstep if those tickle your fancy. You could also open up into a third faction. Fire brings in powerful cards like Autotreader, while Time gives you access to Machinations, and boy would these threats love overwhelm.

Summary: Overall this deck is very exciting. Few decks can interact with the void outside of cards like Display of Tradition so you are free to set up. You will have a good amount of threats, but there may be games where you are just stuck with all discard and no payoff. If you aren’t playing this deck, make sure to have some instant speed interaction before a Deathwatcher comes flying at you.

Ultimate Mandrakes

Another tribe given life by Empire of Glass, Mandrakes definitely has some powerful Units. While not all exceptional on their own, their different triggers and Ultimates combine to form a rather strong engine. The biggest pull to Mandrakes is the ability to reasonably play four Shoal Stirrings. That card can really pull some weight. There are some non-Mandrake cards included to help trigger different Ultimates or to Ultimate themselves helping buff your Mandrakes.

Market: A Shadow Market was the obvious choice, and not just because Vine Grafter’s regen is busted, but because it’s a Mandrake! Sabotage and Vara's Choice are included to answer threats that Xenan may not be able to easily answer. Machinations acts as Shoal Stirrings 5-8 which is always welcome. Curtain Call and Nectar of Unlife are just super powerful cards that you may want in a slew of situations.

Other Notable Options: This is actually a deck I could see going with two Grafters because they both have Ultimates to trigger. Then you could probably swap Sabotage for a time card or something of the sort. One thing I really wanted to do with this deck, like most decks, is add another faction. This time for Root Ripper as that card really excites me. You can make whatever big bad monster the opponent has into a 3/3, or you can upgrade one of your units. On top of that you get a repeatable anthem with Overwhelm for all your Mandrakes. Double Primal is a lot, though, so a sacrifice would have to be made.

Summary: Mandrakes are a solid archetype filled with great supporting cards. Being in Xenan for Machinations and Curtain Call is definitely upside. The relative downside is that the deck functions best when all it’s pieces interlock. Which is a common theme in these decks.

Last Words

I think I got to all the decks I wanted to cover. I got pretty jumbled up looking through my deck folder on Eternal over and over. Hopefully this article gives you a decent enough idea of the possible meta or gave you an idea for a deck to bring to the tournament. Peasant is one of my favorite things about Eternal and I really hope to share that love with you this weekend. So head on over to Battlefy to sign up or twitch to watch the action on Saturday. Good luck this weekend!

noverb noverb+5160


EarthsOverseer Eternal Version: 20.12.23
Awesome article noverb! You’ve really outdone yourself this time.