The seven best budget Timeless decks for MTG Arena Ranked (2024)

The seven best budget Timeless decks for MTG Arena Ranked (2024)
Johnny Garcia Updated on by

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Timeless is one of the many formats on Magic: The Gathering: Arena. The format allows every single card on Arena to be played, with no bans. Instead, cards that are problematic are restricted to only one copy per deck. It mimics the rules of the Vintage format, albeit confined to the card pool on Magic: The Gathering: Arena. Due to just how many cards are legal in the format, the decks in Timeless can get extraordinarily expensive when it comes to wildcards. While weaker than full-powered decks, there are a few budget decks you can use in Timeless without needing to break the bank trying to gather wildcards. These are the seven best budget decks in Timeless for Magic: The Gathering: Arena Ranked.

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What Is A Budget Deck?

A budget deck on Magic: The Gathering: Arena refers to a deck that uses little to no rare or mythic wildcards. Common and uncommon wildcards are very easy to come by, and it’s not unusual to have hundreds of them in your collection. As such, decks that primarily use common and uncommon rarity cards are considered budget, with minimal use of rare and mythics. 

7. Dimir Terror

Dimir Terror is a tempo deck built around Tolarian Terror, which can easily cheat itself out for just one blue mana. The deck plays a ton of instant and sorcery spells so they can fill up the graveyard with them to consistently cast Tolarian Terror. It tends to play a lot of cards that can draw and discard as a way to get more into the graveyard quicker while also getting the cards they want in their hand into the hand. 

While Dimir Terror’s main monster is Tolarian Terror, the other side of the equation is the instant and sorcery collection of cards. These are both counterspells and removal spells to keep your opponent’s spells from resolving or creatures from staying on the battlefield. Cards like Counterspell, Fatal Push, and Stern Scolding can also handle most of the cards in the format. Lorien Revealed is also great at getting a land out of your library by islandcycling it, and since it’s a sorcery you also contribute to the Tolarian Terror discount. 

Although not an instant or sorcery, Mishra’s Bauble is another card the deck wants around. It gives you a free card draw as well as information on what your opponent is drawing. You can build Dimir Terror without any rares, though it’s not a bad idea to at least dedicate four rare wildcards to getting a playset of Counterspell so you have access to the best counter in the format. Even then, even a full-power Dimir Terror list doesn’t need to invest too heavily into wildcards thanks to many of its best enablers being common and uncommon. 

6. Mono-Blue Delver

Delver is a famous archetype throughout Magic’s history, and it has a position in the Timeless metagame as well. As the name implies, the deck’s main gameplan involves Delver Of Secrets, and plays primarily instant and sorcery cards to make sure you can flip it over into a 3/2 flyer early in the game to get in for a massive amount of damage. While Delver Of Secrets is the main creature in the deck, other choices such as Spyglass Siren and Siren Stormtamer help to fill up the battlefield more, and have flying to make it easier to get in for damage if your opponent has no way to block them. 

As for the noncreature slots, most of the cards have a mana cost of one to make sure you can always be casting them. Spell Pierce shuts down noncreature spells early, and Stern Scolding and Lofty Denial help to take care of creatures. Of course, traditional Counterspell is a great choice for the rare playset. 

One problem Mono-Blue Delver can have is running out of cards in their hand. Luckily, there are two budget ways to take care of that. Since you use so many spells, Treasure Cruise is a great source of card draw thanks to having the delve ability to discount it by exiling cards from your graveyard, and Curious Obsession gives a creature card draw whenever it deals damage along with a useful little +1/+1 stat boost. While Mono-Blue Delver is budget, if you are looking to upgrade it, going into Izzet opens up the door for a stronger core, but the Mono-Blue version is suitable if you’re trying to keep things budget. 

5. Boros Affinity

Affinity is a mechanic that discounts the generic mana you have to pay based on how many permanents you control of a specific type. Generally, affinity is best on artifacts due to how many useful artifacts there are in the game. For Timeless, Boros Affinity gives you access to the best affinity support cards without needing to dive deep in your wildcards. 

Your creatures are going to all be artifacts, with Ornithopter being a free way to get an artifact creature on the battlefield to raise your affinity for artifacts. Eventually, this can cast free Myr Enforcers. Yotia Declares War is also important, as this also gives you an Ornithopter on the battlefield. The reason Ornithopters are so important is because of Retrofitter Foundry, your rare playset as it can turn the Ornithopters into a 4/4 artifact creature by tapping itself. The artifact dual lands are only common and count for affinity, so Rustvale Bridge is a fantastic dual land for the deck that lets you tap for any colour you may need. Even without it, the majority of your deck is colourless, so it’s rare you won’t be able to cast a spell. 

To take advantage of how many artifacts you control, Michiko’s Reign of Truth gives a creature a massive stat boost for two turns, and All That Glitters provides a more permanent stat boost for as long as the aura is attached. Shrapnel Blast is a potential game ender, as it can deal five damage to any target if you have an artifact to sacrifice. If you want even more guaranteed damage, Gingerbrute can be used to make in unblockable for an excellent choice to give All That Glitters or Michiko’s Reign of Truth’s stat boosts to. 

4. Boros Convoke

While Boros Convoke does require two playsets of rares, it’s worth it for an explosive deck that can win the game in the first few turns. The deck takes advantage of the plethora of common creatures that create a token when they enter the battlefield like Voldaren Epicure, Thrabn Inspector, and Novice Inspector. The tokens aren’t ever used for their printed effect, but instead as sacrifice fodder for Kuldotha’s Rebirth and Gleeful Demotion, which turns them into three 1/1 creatures for just one red mana. Ornithopter is also excellent as a way to use these two cards one turn one, or acts as just an extra body on the battlefield. Resolute Reinforcements is a two-drop but comes with two bodies on the battlefield for the price of one. 

With how quickly the deck can flood the battlefield with creatures, this enables the convoke mechanic, which lets you tap creatures to generate mana instead of paying their mana costs traditionally (a creature taps for either the mana of its colour or generic). Knight-Errant Of Eos can get even more creatures into your hand to easily cast, and Venerated Loxodon can give +1/+1 counters to all the creatures that convoked it to give them a big stat boost early in the game. 

Boros Convoke wins games out of nowhere, and if your opponent has no way to wipe to board, you are going to be able to beat most desks in the metagame. With how quickly Boros Convoke sets up an established battlefield, it can chump block and chip in for damage before your opponent even has a chance to play a creature. 

3. Rakdos Burn

Burn is always a staple of budget decks, and for Timeless, Rakdos Burn is the way to go thanks to the plethora of payoffs in the colour pairing. The black side of things gives more burn spells unavailable to Mono-Red such as Bump in the Night and Okiba Reckoner Raid which flips into a creature later. Endless Nightmare is another fantastic one-mana black card that deals two damage while also forcing your opponent to discard a card to set them back early in the game. 

Taking a page out of Pauper, Rakdos Burn in Timeless can take advantage of cards like Voldaren Epicure to make a Blood token to cast Alms of the Vein for its madness cost to deal three damage and gain three life for just one black mana. 

As for the red side of things, the rare playset you don’t want to skip out on is Lightning Bolt. Unconditional three damage to any target for one mana is simply too good to pass up on, and is the reason Lightning Bolt is a staple in burn decks in all formats. Monastery Swiftspear is similar, as it helps you create explosive turns if your opponent doesn’t block it, as you can chain instant-speed burn spells to trigger its prowess to make it larger and deal massive damage. Since Timeless decks tend to have such a low mana curve, Eidolon Of The Great Revel is another great addition if you want to add in more rares when you’re looking to upgrade. 

2. Beseech Storm

Beseech Storm is a deck that takes advantage of Beseech The Mirror’s effect when bargained which lets you cast a spell with a mana value of four or less for free. The goal is to chain Beseech The Mirror into other copies of itself, to then win the game with Tendrils Of Agony which has storm, meaning it copies itself for every other spell you had cast that turn. As an added bonus, you can use Beseech as a tutor for other cards in your library. 

Ornithopter and Shambling Ghast are both ways to ramp up your mana, with four Dark Rituals being your main rare playset. You do still need two more ways to fill out the Tendrils Of Agony slots, but no more than that. Weather The Storm is useful, but can be excluded until you want to upgrade the deck from its budget version. The deck is nothing but cheap artifacts and creatures to easily get your storm count high and give you targets for Beseech the Mirror to bargain. 

While most tutors are rare or higher, Assemble The Team is only an uncommon that lets you search out for combo pieces. While it does only let you look at the top third of your library, this still gives you high odds of finding one of the combo pieces you need for any given time. 

1. Red Deck Wins

It’s impossible to talk about budget decks without talking about Red Deck Wins. The deck is Mono-Red, playing nothing but cheap (both literally and in mana value) and meant to win as quickly as possible by using creatures with haste and burn spells. Monastery Swiftspear is the heart and soul of the deck, capable of doing a ton of damage if left unchecked. Kumano Faces Kakkazan is another good addition to the deck, as it can have Monastery Swiftspear enter with a +1/+1 counter to make it that much more threatening while Kakkazan flips into a 2/2 creature with haste once it goes through the Saga. 

With how many burn spells have released on Magic: The Gathering: Arena, Red Deck Win has access to the best ones. Lightning Bolt is a staple of red decks, and Static Discharge is another card that deals three damage to any target but also makes all other copies of itself deal one more damage than the last. Searing Blood is another punish to low-toughness creatures, dealing two damage to it but then three damage to its controller to get removal and burn on one card. 

While the main rare of the deck is Lightning Bolt, the mythic playset is dedicated to Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer. The Monkey can snowball the game in your favour, giving you Treasure tokens and the ability to cast spells from the top of your opponent library while being a good blocker as well. 

That’s as much as we have on the best budget Timeless decks in MTG Arena Ranked. In the meantime, you might consider the best standard decks in MTG Arena, alongside the most expensive cards in the upcoming MTG Fallout set.