Building Dimir Control In Standard

Alessandro Carvallo details his process building Dimir Control for Standard, featuring Micromancer and a suite of tutorable control cards.

A New Proposal

Dimir Micromancer Control is one of my new proposals for Standard at the moment, representing a classic control deck with a good balance between removal, counterspells and card draw.

I started building this archetype a couple of months ago, but I originally wasn’t quite sure how I should build the base of this deck. I believe this is the right time to build and pilot a full-blown control deck, now that there is a solidly established metagame. When a metagame has established in this way, control player can make more educated choices on which answers to pack into the deck to combat the strongest, most-played threats in the format.

Right now, the decks to beat in Standard are Grixis Midrange, Mono-White Midrange and Azorius or Mono-White Soldiers.

These are the decks I kept in mind when building Dimir Micromancer Control. I would be very happy having favorable matchups against at least two of these three matchups.

Deckbuilding Philosophy

The biggest challenge in building this deck is finding the perfect balance between reactivity and proactivity, so I will explain my proposal for the construction of the deck in parts and thus be able to reach a very good configuration.

The card that was my strongest pull toward Dimir Control is Micromancer. The flexibility that this card gives us is very interesting for the strategy that we want to develop, because it can give us access to search our deck for removal spells, discard spells and card draw.

Duress is a very successful card right now in Standard and is very maindeckable. There are many threats in the current metagame that Duress can easily solve. Another great advantage of Duress is that it will give us the necessary information to better sequence our spells.

Removal Spells

Ronas Vortex, Cut Down and March of Wretched Sorrow are my removal spells of choice: Cut Down for early game, Rona’s Vortex for mid-to-late game and March of Wretched Sorrow for later game.

It really seems extraordinary to me to have access to all these tutorable removal cards in our main 60 (plus Consider and Duress). It gives us a feeling of being able to cope with the different angles of play that our opponent presents us.

With the one-mana Micromancer removal suite figured out, my second line of removal spells are Infernal Grasp, Go for the Throat and Path of Peril – mandatory removal for any deck that uses black.

Lier, Disciple of the Drowned

I continued building with one of my favorite cards of all time: Lier, Disciple of the Drowned. Lier has a history of generating very powerful combos and very interesting interactions in past Standard metagames. I always like combining it with cheap spells to be able to take advantage of its ability from turn six or seven on.

This card works very successfully based on the spells that we chose to combine with Micromancer and also with other spells that I chose to give more consistency to our strategy.

Card Advantage

Continuing with cards that give me proactivity and card advantage, they are Memory Deluge and Siphon Insight.

Siphon Insight is a card that I love and I always look for a deck that can benefit from all the potential it has. It has a very good line of play around counter spells and is very annoying for our opponents with midrange and control decks. Apart from this, the surprise effect alone generated by playing the opponent’s spells makes our plan much more interesting and also much more uncomfortable for them.

To finish the construction of our maindeck, I chose Reckoner Bankbuster – one of tne of the best cards in the format without a doubt. Four copies is always a great advantage when we face midrange or control decks.

And to close with a flourish, I also included a couple of copies of Hullbreaker Horror – also a very powerful card in Standard and even more so in this deck full of cheap spells, which is where we will get its best potential.

Manabase

Our manabase is pretty solid, since we only play two colors and we also have very good dual lands. I was testing between 24/25 lands, and I leaned towards 25 for our final list. We have a small white splash with Raffine’s Tower to have a chance to cast a cleaved Path of Peril.

Dimir Micromancer Control
Standard
Buy on TCGplayer $288.89
by Alessandro Carvallo
2 mythic
30 rare
9 uncommon
19 common
0
1
2
3
4
5
6+
Creatures (6)
3
Micromancer
$0.75
Instants (21)
2
Cut Down
$2.98
2
Rona's Vortex
$0.50
3
Consider
$5.97
1
Infernal Grasp
$2.99
2
Negate
$0.50
3
Make Disappear
$2.37
4
Siphon Insight
$1.40
1
Memory Deluge
$0.35
Sorceries (4)
2
Duress
$0.50
2
Path of Peril
$2.58
Artifacts (4)
Lands (25)
7
Island
$0.07
4
Swamp
$1.40
4
Shipwreck Marsh
$17.96
4
Raffine's Tower
$51.96
60 Cards
$172.54
15 Cards
$172.21

Why Dimir Control?

You’re probably wondering what makes Dimir control a good deck right now. Playing control is never a bad option, but even if the metagame is heavily represented by midrange decks, this allows us to have the necessary timing to develop our entire game.

It is also a deck that makes decisions much more difficult for our opponent, and we benefit from that, since we will always play with open mana and on the opponent’s turn, giving us many interactions and decisions each turn. We also have very good quality counterspells, the best removal spells and great card advantage.

Disadvantages of the Deck

The main disadvantage of Dimir Control is that its gameplay is very complex. Every decision we make will have a lot of repercussions on the rest of the game and all the games we play will have a lot of complexity so that we can move forward.

Dimir control is a “fair” deck; we do not perform powerful combos or interactions that are “auto win”. We must structure our game plan turn by turn.

Sideboard Guide

Grixis Midrange

InOut
+1 Sorin, the Mirthless-2 Path of Peril
+1 Hullbreaker Horror-2 Cut Down
+1 Memory Deluge-1 Rona's Vortex
+1 Go For the Throat
+1 Negate

Soldiers

InOut
+1 Sheoldred, the Apocalypse-2 Duress
+2 Life of Toshiro Umezawa-4 Siphon Insight
+1 Path of Peril-2 Negate
+1 Go For the Throat
+1 Sorin, the Mirthless
+1 March of Wretched Sorrow

Mono-White Midrange

InOut
+2 Disdainful Stroke-1 Duress
+1 Memory Deluge-2 Cut Down
+1 Hullbreaker Horror-2 Siphon Insight
+2 Cruelty of Gix-1 Go For the Throat
  • Alessandro Carvallo

    Standard Competitive Guide

    Alessandro Carvallo, MTGO star and deck designer for Standard and Pioneer, started Playing Magic during Khans of Tharkir and has since placed in the top levels of MTGO play. He held one of the highest winrates in Standard at the beginning of 2022. He likes to innovate and bring new strategies to light, always focused on the competitive side.

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