The Jund of the format  - definitive guide

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The Jund of the format - definitive guide

Today I bring to you the one and only guide on how to play Jund on pauper + sideboard!

By David Royale, 01/23/21

Hi everyone, my name is David, a.k.a. Saitama on both MTGO and Arena. Today I bring to you the one and only guide on how to play Jund on pauper + sideboard guide! But first, I would like to give you some kind of background of the deck.
HOW IT STARTED
Well, it started mainly as a joke. You see, on pauper discords, there's a saying that a deck is “the JUND of the format”, when they are trying to say that it's the worst deck in the format, I didn't understand what they were referring to, and someone explained to me Its because most of the people think that Jund is the worst color combination, since there are no individual cards that had power levels to justify the 3 color combination. This was true in a meta involving fast Faeries decks or long games against Ttron. However, that's not the case anymore, the addition of new cascade creatures to the format is what in essence gives this jund deck the things in terms of power level that we needed.

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Drawing cards is a good way to generate advantage and guarantee wins, but casting cards without paying their mana cost is even better, and these two cards by themselves have the right keywords and stats. So basically I wanted to give jund a shot and make more people interested in it so they stop thinking Jund is the worst color combination, although it's more easily said than done.
THE ACTUAL JUND DECK LIST
The deck is designed as followed:
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LANDS
The first thing we need to talk about is the manabase, being in 3 colors is hard, but not impossible. You need to prioritize which colors you want the most on the first turns, and which ones do you like as a “splash” or in later turns. On this deck, you need to realise that you need your green and black mana early turns, and the red mana is only for the longer game. This is because you want to answer early threats with your black removal and also play the visionary by turn 3 most of the time in order to both draw cards and ramp yourself.
This is the best card in order to fix your mana, I recommend looking at your initial hand very carefully, and see/plan which color you will need in your next following turns, this may sound intuitive but its specially more significative in this deck than in any other, so keep that in mind that your mana development in early turns is what will win you or lose you the game. As a side note, you want to play this untapped and not cycle it by turn 3 if you want to resolve a bonders ornament or by turn 5 or 6 if you want to play a Boarding Party, more often than not you will find out in this position, so don't be afraid of play the land instead of cycling it.
The same as the above, some may prefer evolving wilds, but I will stick with jund panorama because you need to keep your drops on their corresponding turns, and not be in a position where you cannot cast your Ornament, or Party on time. Also you need to fix your mana later and it's another target for Pulse of Murasa, which is important against tough matchups like Burn. Bounce lands
Being on 22 lands may sometimes be rough trying to resolve 6 and 7 drops but these lands are perfect to both keep 2 land hands by not falling so far behind and fix your mana very well. Thriving lands
Early turns you don't want to commit yourself to a single color and these lands are perfect because they can adapt very well according to your colors on early turns and if you are missing a color on later turns, you can bounce them and reset them if needed. Bojuka Bog / Mortuary Mire
The all Stars of the lands, Bojuka Bogs are a must to deal with GY synergy decks like Tron and Familiars and the Mire can setup nasty cascades such as Altisaur into Party. Have I mentioned that you can bounce these? This is totally worth it in long games!
CREATURES
6 cascaders are self explanatory, casting spells for free is the best feeling, but cascading from Altisaur into Party into Blightning…. The feeling is great.
As for the rest, visionary is almost like a 3 for 1 kind of creature, it replaces itself, it ramps you into further turns and has a decent body to start beating down tempo and control decks. ( With the banning of FFF you are not afraid of playing it on turn 3!). Also for the last 2 creatures, we need the card advantage, and monarchs are great for this role, I went with Thorns but I can also see the other monarchs in color viable. It's just a matter of taste, but 2 monarchs are mandatory.
REMOVAL
13 removal spells in total 4 Cast Down because the card is the best one on its role , no questions about that. 2 Lightning Bolt to either deal with most of the popular creatures on the format or if no targets after cascade, they can go to the opponent's face. 3 Chainer's Edict to deal with Boggles, Guardian of the Guildpact and any other creature resilient to spot removal. Terminate helps against River Boa and Guardian of the Guildpact, Abrade to deal with creatures and artifacts, specially Bonder's Ornament, Suffocating Fumes for swarm or cycle if you won't use it, a single Snuff Out to kill things for no mana and finally Fire Prophecy to both fix your hand early turns and ship lands to the bottom in the late game.
CARD ADVANTAGE
Night's Whispers are needed to fix some of your hands, Bonder's Ornament for both ramp and to get the card advantage late game, Pulse of Murasa to get back lands from the graveyard or any of your creatures (plus the 3 main deck are a pain for Burn to deal with) and finally Blightning. Ohhh Blightning, the single most controversial card on the deck and the one card I wouldn't sideboard out on most games.
This one is tricky but here's my thought process by match up: Burn: you save at least 6 points of burn to your face. Stompy / monoW Heroic / Bogles : you can leave them top decking for the rest of the game if casted at the right time, they may hold combat tricks or voltron pieces and this one card totally ruins their plans. After casted, you can deal with their creatures in an easier way. Elves / Walls: usually, they tend to put a bunch of things first on the battlefield and then refill their hand, so if you manage to cast this before they plan to refill their hand, it's a total win. You can leave them top decking for the rest of the game. Against other decks like Tron and Faeries, it can punish medium hands and mulligans very quickly, it can be a bait for their countermagic before you are trying to resolve bigger things like your cascade creatures or tricky cards like Bonder's Ornaments. As a general rule, timing on this card is key, you don't want to cast it on turn 3 most of the time, but you do want to cast it on later turns by either double spell on the same turn or when they are below 5 cards in hand. As well, you get an idea of what they have in their hand depending on what they discard and you can play your next cards based on that information . Finally most people don't remember that this card deals 3 damage to the face, but party into Blightning it's brutal, unanswered it's 9 damage, discard 2 cards for 6 mana. Also it feels great cascading into Blightning everytime and making them discard the removal they had for your creatures.
GENERAL GAMEPLAY
You may feel that the deck is slow, and it is…. Until it isn't. You see, the first phase of the game involves developing your mana the right way and answering early creatures with your removal package. Once you feel you have the game “in control” you start casting your cascade creatures and all of a sudden, it's almost a 2 turn clock for them. With this deck, when it rains it pours, after your first cascade creature, usually is followed by a second one or a way to get back your creature from the graveyard, if it somehow died or got countered. Also keep in mind that more than a third of your deck is removal, so if you have the removal, and the mana to play a cascade creature, first cast the cascade one and see what happens, most of the time you will hit your removal and you can save the one that’s in your hand. On the other hand, it usually pays off to play cascade hoping for a removal because the chances you hit one are very high, and for the same reason, you may want to delay casting your cascade creatures until you have a potential target for removal on the field. All these plays are very situational but the more you play the deck, the more you will get the feel on when to make some of these plays. Cascade is somewhat random, but, this deck has better cascade targets than your average cascaders decks. Look at Walls or LD, having played those decks, and cascading into just Wild Growth or a wall, doesn't feel that great, but cascading into removal most of the time, it really does. Think about it, your worst cascade target is Bonder's Ornament, and even that will help you in the long run.
SIDEBOARD
This Sideboard is designed to beat the league meta, as it's prepared for a wider variety of decks, most of them aggressive ones. Most of the cards are pretty self explanatory but here are some common match-ups you may want to know how to sideboard against.
Affinity

IN

OUT

Consider Fiery Cannonade and Pyroblast if you see a lot of blue cards.
Burn

IN

OUT

If it's the creature heavy version add the fourth Chainer's.
U/x Faeries

IN

OUT

You can cut 2 Chainer's for the last cannonade and electrickery depending on what you see game 1.
Tron

IN

OUT

Familiars

IN

OUT

Heroic

IN

OUT

Stompy / Elves

IN

OUT

You can also side out a Blightning instead of a pulse on the draw against stompy.
Walls

IN

OUT

Fiery Cannonade is not that great against walls.
Pestilence

IN

OUT

Bogles

IN

OUT

Boros Bully

IN

OUT

(potentially a snuff out for weather the storm)
Boros Monarch

IN

OUT

The above is just a reference, as all Sideboard guides, sideboard decisions may need to be changed based on what you see game one or according to the timezone you play in. For a narrow meta of Tron and Faes, I would add the 4th Pyro and the third Bojuka Bog maindeck. It's funny, because some people may add GY hate against you and that really is not that big of a deal, if you see this, take out Pulse and Murasa, and punish them with mighty cascade creatures!
FINAL THOUGHTS
First of all thank you all of you who continued reading up until here, and special thanks to all the people who encouraged me to keep tuning and testing the deck. It was by no means easy, especially when archetypes are well defined but if you have an idea always try and pursue it to make it happen, even if they tell you that you are playing the JUND of the format hahaha. Thanks everyone, if you have any questions please let me know ;)

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