MTG Arena decks: the best MTG Standard decks January 2023

Keeping up with the best MTG Arena decks is a task and a half with bans and new cards in Standard - so here's the best MTGA decks, made easy

MTG Arena decks - artwork of the phyrexian praetor sheoldred, villain of the Dominaria United set.

For anyone having a hard time grinding through Magic: The Gathering Arena’s ranked Standard mode, there’s no shame in looking for help to start stacking up the wins. Here we’ll take you through some of the best MTG Arena decks available, as well as what makes them so strong to play with, and difficult to play against.

In MTG Arena, the meta is constantly moving. Fresh brews appear week by week, and the best MTG Arena deck of the moment may soon be surpassed by a new variant. It’s hard to keep up, even if you’ve perfected how to build an MTG deck, or have a great MTG deck builder to help you out. To give you a head start we’ve collected five MTG Arena Standard decks that can be ridden all the way to Mythic.

These are best MTG Arena decks in Standard right now:

MTG Arena decks - a screenshot of an MTG Arena decklist for the esper midrange archetype

Esper Midrange

In the post-Dominaria United meta, Esper (White/Blue/Black) is the MTG color combination that has cemented itself as king of midrange (though there are plenty of pretenders to its throne). The simple reason for that is: it plays great cards from three different colours.

In a world of slow decks playing scary threats, Esper packs some of the scariest. Star of the show is Raffine Scheming Seer, which draws cards and rewards you for building a board. Other key cards are Wedding Announcement and top MTG planeswalkers like The Wandering Emperor, or Kaito Shizuki. 

There’s not a ton of synergy to speak of in this MTG Arena deck, it just jams in a bunch of busted cards that generate value, threatening to get out of control quickly. As a result, it packs in the rares. This is one MTG deck that’s going to burn through a lot of wildcards.

MTG Arena decks - a screenshot of an MTG Arena decklist for the mono black midrangearchetype

Mono Black Midrange

Banning The Meathook Massacre may have given Esper a slight edge, but it wasn’t enough to keep the black decks down. Though one of its key pieces has been relegated to the MTG banlist, this deck archetype is still going strong.

Looking to play a slower, grindy game, this mono black deck relies on the awesome power of Sheoldred, The Apocalypse, powerful removal like Invoke Despair, and one of the best MTG Vehicles, Reckoner Bankbuster, for card draw.

While it leans on the slow side, this MTGA deck has plenty of one-drops that can build up an early lead. That also means Mono Black Midrange can hold aggro decks at bay, stalling them until it can generate a decisive lead.

MTG Arena decks - a screenshot of an MTG Arena decklist for the blue tempo archetype

Mono Blue Tempo

Something of an antidote to all the midrange MTG Arena decks floating around in Standard right now, Mono Blue Tempo relies on tons of cheap blue spells, and just a few potent threats to close out the game.

Using this Standard deck, you’ll frustrate your opponent with counterspells like Spell Piece, bounce their creatures with Fading Hope, and dig for your big threats with Thirst for Discovery. With their resources and patience dwindling, you then slap down a Haughty Djinn or Tolarian Terror (great with all the spells you’ve used), keep it safe with Slip out the Back, and use it to close out the game. Simple!

MTG Arena decks - a screenshot of an MTG Arena decklist for the selesnya enchantments archetype

Selesnya Enchantments

Still kicking around from Kamigawa Neon Dynasty, this synergistic deck does just what it did at the start of the year. It takes advantage of the best MTG enchantments and enchantment payoffs in Standard, piling up +1/+1 counters and throwing big dudes at your enemies.

Cards like Jukai Naturalist Kami of Transience, and Generous Visitor all work together here to form an aggressive beatdown deck. Your cards all make each other better, and once you get going, it’s hard for an opponent to slow you down without mass removal that can reset the board. That’s why The Meathook Massacre’s banning puts this deck back ahead.

If you’ve taken a break from MTG Arena lately and want a deck that doesn’t use cards from the last few sets but can still win games, we recommend Selesnya Enchantments. If that’s you by the way, make sure you’ve not missed any recent MTG Arena codes.

MTG Arena decks - a screenshot of an MTG Arena decklist for the jund midrange archetype

Jund Midrange

Fine, one more midrange deck. The Jund Midrange deck packs the biggest, highest mana cost threats in Standard currently, huge green creatures like Titan of Industry and Workshop Warchief. It gets fantastic use out of these by leveraging one of the best cards of the year, Fable of the Mirror-breaker.

After that, it’s just your Standard midrange deck, playing some of the best cards in three different colours, along with a nice bit of interaction to deal with opposing threats. Blood-Tithe Harvester stands out as a quality two-drop that can perform a number of roles in this MTG Arena deck.

MTG Arena decks - a screenshot of an MTG Arena decklist for the mono red aggro archetype

Mono Red Aggro

Okay, that’s enough clever stuff. Here’s a strategy that’s been around in Magic for ages, and always kills when new sets drop, MTG Standard rotation happens, or the meta is a little on the slower side.

Mono Red Aggro looks to punish slow decks by attack, attack, attacking with a load of little one and two drops (Phoenix Chick, Reinforced Ronin) and winning the game before your opponent even knows what’s happened. Burn spells like Lightning Strike can deal with annoying blockers, or finish the game once you’ve got the other player low.

Your aim with Mono Red Aggro decks is to hit your opponent hard and fast, pulling into a commanding lead before they can muster a proper defence or – your worst nightmare – find a board wipe spell.