Paupers and Kings, Ep. 10: Robot Uprising

arcbound-ravager-730x280

Hi everyone, and welcome to the tenth and final episode of Paupers & Kings, my series on porting Pauper decks into the Modern format while staying on a budget. I hope you have enjoyed the series, and have taken advantage of some of the crossover archetypes to break into either Modern or Pauper (or both). I’ve had a lot of fun playing lists across the formats and have myself learned a lot more about Modern in the process. If you missed an episode, here is a link to all ten articles.

For our final week we’re taking a look at Affinity. The goal in both formats is similar: smash down a bunch of robots and/or artificers and beat face. In Modern our guys tend to be free or very cheap, and we get a lot of them, and we gain value with cards like Signal Pest, Cranial Plating, and Arcbound Ravager. In Pauper we rely more on the metalcraft ability and Affinity for Artifacts to cheat out 4/4s before our opponent knows what’s happening.

Let’s take a look, shall we?

Affinity in Pauper

We’re playing Eredion’s list in Pauper, a choice I made after he stomped me with it in a Daily Event while I was playing Hexproof. His mastery of the list notwithstanding, I like a lot of the choices he has made in putting his list together as well. Here is his 75:

[d title=”Affinity by Eredion (Pauper)”]
Land
4 Great Furnace
4 Seat of the Synod
4 Tree of Tales
4 Darksteel Citadel
2 Vault of Whispers

Creatures
4 Atog
4 Carapace Forger
4 Frogmite
4 Myr Enforcer

Spells
4 Thoughtcast
4 Galvanic Blast
2 Perilous Research
2 Fling

Utility
2 Flayer Husk
2 Ichor Wellspring
3 Prophetic Prism
3 Springleaf Drum
4 Chromatic Star

Sideboard
3 Dispel
2 Doom Blade
2 Electrickery
1 Krark-Clan Shaman
2 Serene Heart
3 Ancient Grudge
2 Relic of Progenitus [/d]

The stars of Affinity in Pauper are Myr Enforcer and Carapace Forger, and many a match is won by simply swinging in with these mighty 4/4s before your opponent has a chance to mount much of a defense. Even so, the creature that really inspires fear in the list is, of course, the wily [c]Atog[/c]. Anytime he is on the table, especially in the mid- to late-game, he can be a game-winning threat. Because of his potential for explosiveness, your opponent is often forced to make bad blocks, lose advantage on the board, and eventually be either overrun to have something giant [c]Fling[/c]ed at his face.

[c]Flayer Husk[/c] is great in the mirror and gets your guys out of [c]Flame Slash[/c] range, while also providing another 1-drop artifact to fuel your Affinity count. Six draw spells help ensure that you don’t run out of gas and, combined with nine cantripping artifacts, you can really draw cards with the best control lists, at least for awhile.

Eighteen land feels right, and the [c]Vault of Whispers[/c] help enable [c]Doom Blade[/c] out of the board, a necessity for guys like [c]Fangren Marauder[/c] who will, left unchecked, completely ruin your day.

Eredion’s list is on the cheap end, even for Pauper, mainly because he doesn’t run [c]Hydroblast[/c] or [c]Pyroblast[/c] in the sideboard. That said, it’s a well-tuned list that will compete with any deck you run up against; you’re more than getting your money’s worth. It’s under 10 tix to put together online, and just $34 to build in paper.

Myr-Enforcer

Affinity in Modern

For Modern, we started with iBelieveable’s list, and modified it to be slightly more on the budget end. You have a lot of choices when building Affinity in Modern, which I love. Some lists run as many [c]Master of Etherium[/c] as possible alongside [c]Welding Jar[/c]s to protect them, while others focus more on exploding out of the gate and winning as early as possible. Affinity can win on turn three and will often win by turn four, well before some opponents have done more than put down a mana dork or gotten their mana bases under control. Here is the Modern list we played.

[d title=”Affinity (Modern)”]
Land
4 Blinkmoth Nexus
4 Glimmervoid
4 Inkmoth Nexus
4 Darksteel Citadel
4 Island

Creatures
4 Arcbound Ravager
1 Etched Champion
3 Master of Etherium
4 Signal Pest
4 Steel Overseer
4 Vault Skirge
4 Ornithopter
4 Memnite

Spells
4 Thoughtcast
4 Cranial Plating
4 Springleaf Drum

Sideboard
3 Etched Champion
2 Chalice of the Void
4 Dismember
2 Torpor Orb
1 Whipflare
2 Ancient Grudge
1 Illness in the Ranks [/d]

The number of must-answer threats here is huge. [c]Arcbound Ravager[/c], [c]Steel Overseer[/c], [c]Master of Etherium[/c], and [c]Cranial Plating[/c] all have a major impact and will win unless answered. Even if they take care of your creatures on the ground, your lands are ready to transform and start flying over the battlefield. [c]Inkmoth Nexus[/c] can easily win in a single swing with a cranial plating later on in the game, and at that point your opponent will be hoping to top-deck answers since they’ve likely used all their resources handling your other threats.

I like drawing two cards for {U} so I added in 4x [c]Thoughtcast[/c] from the original list. Some lists run [c]Galvanic Blast[/c] or even [c]Dispatch[/c], but I liked staying in a single color as much as possible. I was tempted to try out [c]Ensoul Artifact[/c] because it works so nicely with [c]Darksteel Citadel[/c] and [c]Vault Skirge[/c] but it didn’t end up in this list. All of our threats are viable on their own, using an extra card and opening ourselves up to a 2-for-1 situation didn’t seem ideal.

You can make Affinity a budget list in Modern, more or less, just by taking out [c]Mox Opal[/c]. I’m sure it’s handy for explosive starts, but at $150 for a playset online, I’m happy to pass. After that, you’re looking at $15 for the 4x [c]Arcbound Ravager[/c]s, $50 for the 8x Nexus lands, and less than $30 for the rest of the mainboard. That’s under $100 online for the main 60.

For the sideboard, [c]Etched Champion[/c], [c]Ancient Grudge[/c], [c]Whipflare[/c], and [c]Dismember[/c] all are important players, and none of them are too expensive. After that you can fill in with whatever awesome artifacts you have laying around: [c]Pithing Needle[/c], [c]Chalice of the Void[/c], and [c]Torpor Orb[/c] are all cards that can do work. [c]Glimmervoid[/c] and [c]Springleaf Drum[/c] mean you can bring in nearly any color from the board, so cards like [c]Rule of Law[/c] and [c]Illness in the Ranks[/c] are viable options too, just don’t get greedy with any cards that require double mana unless it is {U}{U}, since that’s the only color we can really call our own.

Affinity on the Play

Three videos for each format this week. I played far, far more in Modern as I enjoyed the deck so thoroughly, but only filmed three. My current record with Modern Affinity is 10-2, though, and it is now my favorite Modern list alongside U Tron.

 

In Pauper, Affinity rewards practice and expertise. I’ve played against Eredion twice now in Daily Events, and while we are 1-1, his expertise with Affinity is apparent regardless of if he wins or loses. My point is that the deck is stronger than it seems by watching me play it; I’m sure my misplays were numerous and costly.

Next week on Paupers and Kings

Sadly, there is no next week on Paupers and Kings. Thanks for tuning in to the series, and I hope you enjoyed it! My next endeavor will have a stronger, more particular focus on Pauper and the competitive metagame. Let me know what directions you’d like to me to take, or if you’d like to see anything in particular covered for Pauper.

Until then, may your craniums always be plated.

/bava

Legacy on Mondays: Getting Into Eternal Part III: Final Tips

scalding tarn 2

Hey guys,

For the past two weeks, I have been trying to help you break into the eternal format of Legacy with strategies like buying staples and just playing budget decks. At this point, I just want to share a last few tips with you to help you get started. It won’t be too long of an article, this will just be a small advice compilation to assist in your beginning. Here we go:

1. Practice First!

This means that before you invest in a Legacy deck of some kind to play on MTGO or in paper, you should play around with it a little bit and see: A) if you like it, and; B) if it actually works. How you ask?

Well, WOTC might hate me for saying this if they read my articles, but use a free online service. Cockatrice is my preferred one for testing, and it’s relatively easy to navigate.

Another such program is Magic Workstation, but I do not know how well it works as I have never used it. Honestly, I am a little scared to suggest this. I only recommend these programs for testing Eternal. Please do not use them to actually play Magic games. It is much less fun and competitive than playing even on MTGO. For this reason, I am also declining to provide you with links. I know the cost is exorbitant, which is why I advocate testing before investing, but please play the game as it was meant to be played.

2. Borrow Cards

This will get you very far. If you have a couple friends that have some duals and fetches that they are not using in their current Legacy deck(s), then ask to borrow them. If you can earn some store credit or money using borrowed Legacy cards, then you can use that credit to help get you those cards from your store. Note that some Legacy-played cards are also very applicable in other formats. Ask your Modern Zoo-playing friend if you can borrow his/her [c]Tarmogoyf[/c]s.

Once again, this one comes with a warning. If some person you don’t know very well lends you cards, do not steal them. It is not nice in the slightest, and will not do you any good. Tapping into your friend’s assistance can be of great benefit, but I think it goes without saying that you should NEVER take advantage of it.

3. Get Used To Playing One Deck

This one might be hard. Since Eternal formats come with such a high cost, it is only feasible to own one or two complete Legacy decks at any given time, since your staples can only be stretched so far based on how many you own. This is where testing comes into play, too. Make sure you love the deck that you buy since you will play it a LOT. It will likely be the same 70-75 cards that you play at every Legacy event and game for a while, especially if you are just getting into the format.

The upside to playing just one deck for such an extended period, barring a completely dead and un-moving set of decks to play against, is that you will become a master of whatever deck you wield. There is no other format for which this is true. Vintage is a probable exception, and I think EDH is a bit too diverse and is more of a “fun” format, which would likely prevent you from playing the same damn 99 for a year straight.

Modern changes too quickly as well. Playing the same Modern deck for a year is not likely at the pace at which the format is moving right now. But Legacy has a mostly static metagame overall, and if you rock Merfolk for a year, you will “pwn” with the deck.

polluted delta art

4. DO NOT INVEST IN ZENDIKAR FETCHLANDS!

Don’t do it. DO NOT BLOODY DO IT. I am no speculator, but let me tell you this: You will lose a boatload of money if you invest in playsets of Zendikar fetches now. They are so overpriced, it is almost not even funny. You can make due with Khans fetches; they run only about $10 a piece on average, with [c]Polluted Delta[/c] being the most expensive. This is a manageable price, and I am glad for this reprint.

I say this with such enthusiasm because I am almost certain that there will be a reprint of the Zendikar fetch lands within two blocks and whatever special sets may be contained within that time period. Hell, Modern Masters 2015 isn’t even spoiled yet. Perhaps they will make an appearance there. If they do, you will cry if you invested in them, because that’s easily at least $200 that you will be out, even if you purchased just a playset of [c]Misty Rainforest[/c]. You are much better off not losing money and having a slightly imperfect mana base, trust me.

5. Maintain A Methodical Purchasing Approach

This last word of advice is just to keep buying at a gentle pace. You need not dump a ton of money all at once into the format. Just wait to save a bit of spending money, and buy a part of your Legacy deck perhaps monthly or even every two weeks. Don’t stop taking your honey on dates, just continue to accumulate funds slowly and ease in. If you play Standard, I would advise the following:

  1. Stop playing Standard.
  2. Sell your Standard cards before rotation so you do not lose a bunch of money.
  3. Use said money that you have “saved” to buy whatever last thing you need to complete your deck.

This will let you play Legacy immediately after leaving Standard and maintain a bit more money in your pocket. I am not a Standard fan, so I advocate for this, but if Standard is your “love and life,” then by all means play. Who am I to stop you?

That’s all for this week. I hope this series has been at least a little bit helpful to you. Feel free to leave comments with questions, or hit me up with an email.

Note that I will be out of town and away from technology until Thursday of this week, so I will try to reply then or as soon as I can after.

Thanks for reading!

Game of Thrones Chat S04 E10 The Children

The Fan of History and Power_T discuss the season finale.

We assume that you have seen the three first seasons all the episodes of the fourth season up to and including this one when you listen to this. Otherwise there will be spoilers.

Please do not spoil anything from the books or later episodes in the comments to this podcast.
The fourth season on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pjeCcjfkz_E&list=PLiLMS0AQ-jpBqXMsxwqnj1Hb9Uhk0bWqd
The fifth season will be published on Hard Nerd Cafe on YouTube as well as on itunes.

Talk Game of Thrones with us on Hard Nerd Cafe or
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Game-of-Thrones-Chat/233435420181626
or https://twitter.com/GameofThronesCt

Learn more about the Fan of History on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28o-28fc-t8
or check out the Fan of History podcast on itunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/fan-of-history/id958058555?mt=2

Commander Corner: Dragonlord Ojutai

dragonlord ojutai card art

Welcome back,

Over the course of the spoiler season, I have been checking them very intensely. My usual routine involves me making my preferred spoiler site as my home page so it loads immediately when I open up Chrome on my phone. I usually get into a rhythm where I check it once every hour or so, or just whenever I have nothing to do.

As the set was being spoiled, there were some standouts, but nothing that really stuck with me. That all changed when [c]Dragonlord Ojutai[/c] was shown to the world.

I was flabbergasted when I saw him, and still get a bit giddy when I talk about him. His ability perfectly resonates with what I want from a commander in the Azorius color combo. I always wanted to build a commander in these colors, but I could never find one that suited my style. [c]Geist of Saint Traft[/c] is too straightforward, [c]Brago, King Eternal[/c] in my opinion isn’t as good as [c]Roon of the Hidden Realm[/c], and [c]Bruna, Light of Alabaster[/c] is just begging to be killed.

[c]Dragonlord Ojutai[/c] is different though.

[c]Dragonlord Ojutai[/c] can’t be killed immediately unless they wrath the board, he provides card advantage when he connects, he has a sizable body, and a reasonable mana cost. He allows you to sculpt your hand as you pressure your opponent. With the right kind of deck, you can make it so that your opponent can’t kill him outside of wrathing the board. If they’re wasting a wrath to deal with one creature that you can just cast again, things are looking good for you. He gives you card selection and a clock. He does everything a control player needs to win the game. He is the perfect control commander if you don’t wish to play red.

Another thing that [c]Dragonlord Ojutai[/c] does that I love is that he is the perfect example of what his brood is about. They are about meditation and knowledge, while being swift and deadly. They are the wise men of Tarkir, but just because they are smart, doesn’t mean they aren’t deadly.

Ojutai taught his followers well. He taught them patience, cunning, and how to exploit their enemies’ weaknesses instead of using shear power. A fight can be won with the mind just as easily as a sword, and Ojutai lives that philosophy.

Let’s see what the best of the Elder Dragons can teach us today.

Dragonlord-Ojutai-by-Chase-Stone

The master of patience and cunning, Dragonlord Ojutai is often seen in a deep state of meditation

[d title = “Ojutai, Master of the Mind (EDH)]

Commander

1 Dragonlord Ojutai

Lands

1 Adarkar Wastes

1 Azorius Chancery

1 Azorius Guildgate

1 Boseiju, Who Shelters All

1 Celestial Colonnade

1 Cephalid Coliseum

1 Command Tower

1 Evolving Wilds

1 Flooded Strand

1 Glacial Fortress

1 Halimar Depths

1 Hallowed Fountain

9 Island

1 Minamo, School at Water’s Edge

1 Myriad Landscape

1 Mystic Gate

9 Plains

1 Sejiri Refuge

1 Temple of Enlightenment

1 Terramorphic Expanse

1 Tranquil Cove [/d]

[d]

Creatures

1 Angelic Field Marshal

1 Consecrated Sphinx

1 Glen Elendra Archmage

1 Icefall Regent

1 Mother of Runes

1 Restoration Angel

1 Sakashima’s Student

1 Sovereigns of Lost Alara

1 Thassa, God of the Sea

1 Weathered Wayfarer [/d]

[d]

Instants

1 Afterlife

1 Anticipate

1 Azorius Charm

1 Brainstorm

1 Center Soul

1 Condemn

1 Counterspell

1 Crib Swap

1 Cyclonic Rift

1 Desertion

1 Dig Through Time

1 Disenchant

1 Dismiss

1 Emerge Unscathed

1  Impulse

1 Muddle the Mixture

1 Mystical Tutor

1 Path to Exile

1 Pulse of the Grid

1 Reality Shift

1 Remand

1 Return to Dust

1 Sphinx’s Revelation

1 Swords to Plowshares

1 Think Twice

1 Unexpectedly Absent [/d]

[d]

Sorceries

1 Compulsive Research

1 Final Judgment

1 Ponder

1 Preordain

1 Supreme Verdict

1 Treasure Cruise

1 Wrath of God

Enchantments

1 Banishing Light

1 Eldrazi Conscription

1 Journey To Nowhere

1 Mammoth Umbra

1 Myth Realized

1 Oblivion Ring

1 Righteous Authority [/d]

[d]

Artifacts

1 Azorius Keyrune

1 Coalition Relic

1 Commander’s Sphere

1 Darksteel Ingot

1 Gilded Lotus

1 Lightning Greaves

1 Ojutai Monument

1 Sensei’s Divining Top

1 Sol Ring

1 Talisman of Progress

Planeswalkers

1 Ajani Steadfast

1 Narset Transcendent [/d]

Price: MTGO = 132.04 TIX (Not including DTK cards which aren’t out yet) | Paper = $404.22

The way I thought this deck should go is more of a Voltron strategy. Not the typical style of “slap swords on him and go,” but more of just keeping him alive. I don’t like the way the [c]Sword of Fire and Ice[/c] and the others play. It just seems lazy and not very fun. In order to protect our commander, we just have to give him vigilance. If we can do that, he will protect himself.

Besides protecting him, this deck has a heavy focus on card advantage. Keeping your hand full of cards and smoothing out your draws by using the pleothora of cantrips at your disposal should keep you going throughout the game and allow you to use your mana efficiently. Once you feel like it’s time to start applying pressure, just cast [c]Dragonlord Ojutai[/c] and go to town.

This deck’s main way of achieving victory, like most Voltron strategies, is winning via commander damage. Ojutai’s body is sizeable enough that it wont take long until your opponent is dead. He does lose hexproof when he is tapped which is not the most ideal, but we have access to counterspells and protection spells that allow us to make sure he is safe. [c]Minamo, School at Water’s Edge[/c] also goes a long way to make sure that your opponents removal won’t be able to keep our commander down.

myth realized

If [c]Dragonlord Ojutai[/c] isn’t enough, we have a couple of creatures we can get our beat downs on with, as well as one of my favorite cards in Dragons of Tarkir, [c]Myth Realized[/c].

[c]Myth Realized[/c] has been an absolute blast for me. This card has indeed lived up to the hype, at least in my opinion. I don’t know if this card will have a home in Standard, but I believe it at least has a home in this format. This card has impressed me and has shown what a powerful one-drop it is. Over the course of the game, it will become big. I’m not just talking it turning into a 6/6, I mean much larger.

The biggest I’ve ever gotten it to was a 30/30. I cast it on turn one and just let it sit there for a good while. After a couple of turns of casting cantrips and removal spells, it was a large enough threat where I could start turning the corner and applying massive amounts of pressure on my opponent while being able to hold mana up for counter spells. This card is an absolute house and is a win condition on its own.

Honestly, in testing at least, I have yet to run into any severe issues with this deck. Yes, in the early game you’re not doing too much besides casting a couple of cantrips, but you have board sweeps to clean up some early game aggression and move into the later stages of the game, which is where this deck shines.

Once you have firmly taken control of the game, it’s hard to lose that control outside of some rare awkward draws. [c]Dragonlord Ojutai[/c] performs exactly as well as you think he would. The amount of card advantage he gives you is real, and it has helped me win a solid amount of the games I have played with him. This deck is a ton of fun for people who love drawing cards and slowly taking over the game like me.

You have to have patience, the right time to strike will show itself soon enough.

Before I finish up, I would like to comment on the recent rules change for Commander. I think not being able to tuck an opposing commander is bad. I’ve always felt that cards that can tuck commanders to be stop gaps in the format. If a commander gets out of control, instead of just banning them outright, we have ways of dealing with them. We can simply just tuck them and the problem is solved.

Yes, white, blue, and red (also green if your opponent is running an artifact commdner) are the only colors to have these cards, but I don’t think that is an issue. Yes, getting your commander tucked does stink, but I feel that these cards are necessary to prevent people from overly relying on abusing their commander. I think this change will have a negative impact on the format. Only time will tell if I’m right or not.

Thank you for checking out this weeks Commander Corner. If you have any suggestions, let me know in the comments below. Next week, we work on a budget. See you soon, my friends.

-Steven Gulsby

Lines in the Sand: Commander Rules Updates

time reversal Commander rules have been updated. Sam delves into the changes and their implications.

Ladies and gents, the world has changed. We have received an update from the commander Rules Committee. This is technical talk time.

The rules for commanders getting put into your library or into your hand now have an added replacement effect which you may apply. This replacement effect allows you to put the commander in the command zone instead of either of those places. Additionally, you still get to choose where your commander goes regardless of who controls it when either of these things happen.

In the end, who does this update help? Who is the target audience? What does it mean for those besides the target audience? Answers are at the ready.

hallowed burial card spell crumple card chaos warp card

This update strategically benefits everyone who needs access to their commander at all times.

Combo commanders like [c]Zur, the Enchanter[/c], [c]Maralen of the Mornsong[/c], and [c]Sharuum the Hegemon[/c] heavily benefit from this change as their ability to win hinges on having their commander available. Aggressive decks like [c]Krenko, Mob Boss[/c] and [c]Aurelia, the Warleader[/c] also love this update. Finally, voltron decks such as [c]Uril, the Miststalker[/c] and [c]Rafiq of the Many[/c] swoon over this change.

I will point out that many of these commanders, and strategies in general, did not need the help. The decks are good enough without the Rules Committee helping them out.

cultural exchange

Making some decks better was not the goal of the change though.

The goal was to make it so players got to play their cards more often. The fact of the matter is that most players are not heavily invested in the Magic community. Most players do not come to shops to play Magic. Most players do not post on forums or decklist websites. Most players do not read articles. Many players already play Commander believing this rule change is how commander has always worked. These players want to play Magic more than they want to win games of magic.

Letting them have access to their commander more often accomplishes this goal.

With this knowledge in mind it makes perfect sense to implement this change. As someone who does all of the above community interactions however, I think this change will negatively impact my play group and many others.

What can playgroups who do not feel bad about shuffling a problematic commander do to compensate for the loss of such a simple and elegant solution?

The answer is simple; you can do almost nothing to replace these answers. Magic has very few solutions which will get around this. Some colors literally have no replacements for the cards they lost. Cards which could fill this gap include: [c]Lignify[/c], [c]Song of the Dryads[/c], [c]Control Magic[/c], and [c]Arrest[/c].

These may not be great solutions but if your group really needs answers to problem commanders these may be the best you can get.

Players can do a few things about the games themselves however. The players can talk about how competitive they want the upcoming game to be. My group has both very casual decks, like Tribal Sphinxes and Skip My Own Turns, and also has competitive decks like Zur and Krenko. We discuss competitiveness of the next game every time we play. This is easy for us as we collectively have around 15 decks to choose from every game night.

allied strategiesIf all else fails and your group starts to get less fun you have one last bastion of hope, your words. Talk to your friends if the playgroup becomes less fun for you. Magic is a hobby after all and it is supposed to be fun and relaxing, not just competitive and challenging. Communication saves play groups.

Today, I sign off with a quote from my cousin Matt concerning the Rules Committee and their job of accommodating both casual and competitive players:

“The problem with Commander is that it encompasses so much of Magic. There are thousands of plays that are arguably degenerate, and no real way to distinguish what ‘crosses the line.’ They can’t draw their line in the sand without dramatically changing the game.”

See ya next week!

Community League #4: Standard Silverblack, Week 3

community league 4 banner

Hey gang!

Check out the week one article for a reminder on rules, reporting, and prize payouts.

There are no more email reminders so hopefully you all made it here to read this, anyway.

Week Two for Bava

I updated my list slightly from week one (mono black devotion) and played it with updates against rremedio1 for week two. The deck performed much better with the updates and I was able to edge out a win two games to one. Roberto was playing a Sultai control list around [c]Temur Sabertooth[/c], which is super-strong. Here is the video:

What have you guys been playing and how has it gone? Respond in the comments below, or use the league forum!

Week Three Pairings

With further ado, here they are. If you have any questions, get in touch.

league-4-week-3

Looks like it’s me vs Dan for week three. Expect a video from both sides!

Good luck, have fun!

The MagicGatheringStrat Show, Ep. 5

Section 1: This week in Standard Pauper

Section 2: Player run events

MPDC 28.05
23 March 2015
Standard · 13 Players
10 Decks · ~77% Reported
3 rounds Swiss
Top 4 playoff
Hosted by gwyned

1st heroismo* by kukikira
2nd BW Tokens Flood* by Ruthelis
T4 Heroic cruise* by Forli
T4 U/R Control* by Nagi_Bultra

Cruise Watch: 2015
1st Place: 0 Cruise
2nd Place: 0 Cruise
3rd Place: 4 Cruise
4th Place: 4 Cruise

Ok, now for the deck:

Since we have seen Boros heroic and WU heroic like every week, lets look at something slightly different:

BW TOKENS FLOOD
Standard · Aggro-Combo
2nd by Ruthelis in MPDC 28.05 (4-1)
[d]
Creatures
4 sandsteppe outcast
4 Loyal Pegasus
4 Mardu Hordechief
4 Selfless Cathar
2 Sungrace Pegasus
1 Cavalry Pegasus

Spells
4 harsh sustenance
4 Inspired Charge
4 Raise the Alarm
4 Read the Bones
4 Triplicate Spirits
1 Gods Willing

Lands
11 Plains
5 Swamp
4 Scoured Barrens

SIDEBOARD
3 reach of shadows
3 sandblast
4 Oppressive Rays
2 Meditation Puzzle
2 Ajani’s Presence
1 Pillar of Light
[/d]

Very cool that it is White Weenie splashing for Read the Bones and Harsh Sustenance.

Do you think there is room for: [c]Foul-Tongue Shriek[/c]? Seems tailor made for it.

Now, lets look at an opening hand:

Ideal turns:

Turn 1: Scoured Barrens
Turn 2: Selfless Cathar and Scoured Barrens
Turn 3: Plains and Sandsteppe Outcast making a token, attack for 1 with Cathar
Turn 4: Cast Triplicate Spirits
Turn 5: Harsh Sustenance for 6, opponent at 13, Swing for 6, opponent at 7
Turn 6: Sacrifice Cathar and swing for 11.

Now that is with nothing but the cards in your hand. Will that work? I guess if you only have 3 mana, that’s a pretty strong outcome.

Now let’s look at the next six cards:

No mana, but you have plays for days. This looks pretty strong.

If we decide to use [c]Foul-Tongue Shriek[/c], where would it go?

Personally, I would put it in place of [c]Inspired Charge[/c]. Yes, charge is a blow out. However, it doesn’t give you life and it costs double white and is a 4 cmc spell.

Lets look at that math above if we replace the charge with shriek.

On the draw, this would be your opening hand:

Turn 1: Scoured Barrens
Turn 2: Scoured Barrens, cast Selfless Cathar

Your hand looks like this:

Turn 3: Plains, Sandsteppe Outcast making a token, attack for 1 with Cathar.
Turn 4: Triplicate Spirits

Your hand looks like this:

Here is your board state:

boardstate 1

What do you do?

If you Harsh Sustenance for 6 and swing in, that is 13 damage.

If you double cast [c]Foul-Tounged Shriek[/c] and swing in, you gain 12 and they lose 12 and you potentially strike for 7 which would be lethal.

What would be the difference if you happen to have another plains, and Inspired Charge?

If you attack and cast charge, you strike in for 19 just like with the shriek, but you you gain no life.

If your opponent has blockers, they take no damage. With Shriek, they lose life regardless, same with Harsh Sustenance.

So which is better?

Free Wins In Modern: White

eidolon of rhetoric

Hi all,

So what is a free win? There may be definitions floating around out there, but I consider a deck to get a number of free wins when the opponent is unable or unlikely to interact with what you are doing.

How can we get free wins?
A deck can be built to aim for the highest number of free wins by focusing on certain zones that are safe in that metagame. Before Burn received [c]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/c], there were many long stretches where the life total was safe. At these times, a player could pick up the [c]Nivmagus Elemental[/c] deck and prize a few events. The deck depends on a low life total being safe, and otherwise interactions with it are difficult because it is so fast. Sometimes the life total is a safe zone. Sometimes (like now in Modern, for example), the graveyard is safe. Sometimes going wide is safe because there is no mass removal (also now in Modern).

Additionally, free wins can be achieved on the backs of certain safe types of permanents. Seasons have existed (the Jund instead of Junk era before [c]Deathrite Shaman[/c] was banned for example) where creatures with protection from black or red were nearly indestructible, for example. Enchantments rotate in and out of safety according to how well [c]Kor Spiritdancer[/c] is performing.

Is a free win today the same as a free win a month from now?
Certainly not. The sideboard restriction of 15 cards means that it is easy to find a window to exploit, but it is often hard to yield consistent results over the long course of time. In fact, a lot of players unfortunately pick up decks like Storm, Dredge, Bogles, and Eggs because they are cheap and have prized events. Later they find out that by the time they buy the cards, practice the deck, and enter an event, their opponents have placed the necessary 2-3 sideboard cards to crush them.

Essentially, a free win is exploiting a temporary format weakness. If you have another definition, then feel free to write about it in the comments, but for the purposes of this article series, I will be operating with this definition. Rather, henceforth I will be operating with this definition. Otherwise [c]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/c] would be an error in the last article.

Free Wins in White
White is an insane color to use to exploit format weakness and chop decks in half at the axis where they are weakest. White can exploit the graveyard, play creatures with protection from everything, rip apart the ever-present Burn, and play a host of powerful crippling enchantments. The “honorable mentions” list here would scroll down for a long, long ways.

The List
8) [c]Rule of Law[/c], [c]Ethersworn Canonist[/c], and [c]Eidolon of Rhetoric[/c]
Like many cards on the “free wins” lists, these do not actively win the game in any other way than shutting the opponent down. Storm, Living End, Infect, Amulet Bloom, and Burn are severely crippled by this limitation. The time that you buy by playing one of these cards will be the time that you need to win with whatever formality you’ve placed in your deck.

7) [c]Leyline of Sanctity[/c]
This card often wins games before they begin. It isn’t watertight, but it has a lot of sweet characteristics: it is an enchantment with a casting cost greater than 3, so it may as well read “indestructible” (yes, unfortunately except in the matches where it really matters: Burn). It is uncounterable and cannot be discarded from your hand. Finally, it has a lot more range than its primary purpose of defeating seven [c]Lightning Bolt[/c]s. Many combo decks have to bounce this before they can win, and it is unlikely that they have enough bounce spells in their sideboard to do so reliably. Decks with [c]Thoughtseize[/c] and [c]Inquisition of Kozilek[/c] basically get [c]Hymn to Tourach[/c]’d at the beginning of the game.

6) [c]Aven Mindcensor[/c]
This card has all the vulnerabilities it can possibly have. It is a creature. It has one toughness. It costs three. [c]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/c] punishes you for playing him. [c]Abrupt Decay[/c] and even [c]Gut Shot[/c] kill him. Still, this [c]Stone Rain[/c] with flash will often set the opponent so far back in every match where the opponent has a fetchland. Furthermore, in any match against decks that need to search ([c]Primeval Titan[/c], [c]Scapeshift[/c], Tron, and [c]Tooth and Nail[/c] for example) are shutdown outright. His evasion and power of 2 makes him the first list entry that actually can win the game himself. The best thing about his evasion and power is that it messes with your opponent’s perceived clock. [c]Aven Mindcensor[/c] often puts him at two or four below what he thinks he is.

5) [c]Wrath of God[/c]
I would be remiss to omit this when much inferior versions made the red list. The card advantage you can earn from this card is sometimes much greater than those that are on the banned list. [c]Ancestral Visions[/c] draws three cards on turn 5, and this can do more a turn sooner. The anti-regenerate clause is very relevant in a time with [c]Welding Jar[/c], [c]Boros Charm[/c], and even [c]Thrun, the last Troll[/c] coming out to play.

4) [c]Proclamation of Rebirth[/c]
This card has every ounce of hardiness that you want in one around which you would build a deck. It exploits the graveyard, a safe zone. It is uncounterable. It isn’t a permanent. The creatures come back to play, so they won’t be countered. The creatures you are bringing back either gain you mountains of life or serve to defeat the opponent outright: [c]Martyr of Sands[/c] and [c]Serra Ascendant[/c].

3) [c]Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite[/c]
Entirely too much of the format is weak to this Praetor, three thousand steps up from his Ebon predecessor. When cards like [c]Night of Souls’ Betrayal[/c] are given serious consideration to attack Infect, Twin, Affinity, and the like, this card should definitely be cheated into play as often as possible. I’ve never beaten this guy. He is a [c]Wrath of God[/c] attached to a flying 4/7 body, which is plenty, but additionally all the [c]Lingering Souls[/c] tokens and mana dorks that you have been playing before him also give your opponent approximately half a turn to find an answer or die.

2) [c]Iona, Shield of Emeria[/c]
To continue our list of “huge creatures to reanimate with [c]Unburial Rites[/c],” Iona gets the higher nod over Elesh-Norn because she shuts down all decks, whether they are focused on creatures or not. She locks the opponent down as much as many two and three-card locks do, and what’s more is that she can usually end the game in two swings.

And now, the card you’ve been waiting for, the number one free winner in Modern White….

1) [c]Daybreak Coronet[/c]!
This card is the quintessential free-win card in Modern. No deck gets as many free wins as Bogles gets, and what makes [c]Daybreak Coronet[/c] better than many of the other cards on the list is its reliability in the early game. Whereas most of the other cards are relevant on turns four and after, [c]Daybreak Coronet[/c] wins on turn three. It is pride-obliterating to lose to a [c]Slippery Bogle[/c], but once this card is in play, your loss is nearly assured. [c]Rancor[/c], [c]Unflinching Courage[/c], or [c]Spirit Mantle[/c] are the last nails in the coffin.

Well that’s it for this week’s installment of Free Wins in Modern. It could also be known as “You didn’t pack [c]Tempest of Light[/c]? GG” because White hate is focused primarily on enchantments.

I left out many of the cards (excepting [c]Rule of Law[/c]) that get free wins only in particular match-ups like [c]Rest in Peace[/c] or [c]Stony Silence[/c] and tried to look at the grander metagame. I can guarantee that there are plenty of cards you believe should be on this list because that is the way white works.

Game of Thrones Chat S04 E09 Watchers on the Wall

The Fan of History and Power_T discusses what is probably the most male episode of Game of Thrones so far. All men like it. All women despite it. Is that really true?

We assume that you have seen the three first seasons all the episodes of the fourth season up to and including this one when you listen to this. Otherwise there will be spoilers.

Please do not spoil anything from the books or later episodes in the comments to this podcast.
The fourth season on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pjeCcjfkz_E&list=PLiLMS0AQ-jpBqXMsxwqnj1Hb9Uhk0bWqd
The fifth season will be published on Hard Nerd Cafe on YouTube as well as on itunes.

Talk Game of Thrones with us on Hard Nerd Cafe or
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Game-of-Thrones-Chat/233435420181626
or https://twitter.com/GameofThronesCt

Learn more about the Fan of History on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28o-28fc-t8
or check out the Fan of History podcast on itunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/fan-of-history/id958058555?mt=2

Cheap as Chips, Ep. 7: Shivers and Shakes

maralen of the morningsong

Who played Dungeons and Dragons in their youth? Dark elves were some seriously bad dudes in that game. It might not surprise you much to learn that black is my favorite color in Magic. Every deck I’ve brewed for this series is black and some other color. So when I saw that Magic has black elves, I just had to have me some.

Glissa is mostly green, so she doesn’t count. Only one double-black elf has inspired a deck, and it’s this one – [c]Maralen of the Mornsong[/c].

How crazy is that effect? Tutor whatever card you want! Cool right? Ok, wait, let’s think this through carefully.

Hmm. That is a seriously bad idea – giving your opponent the chance to tutor a card first, so they can kill you, and you never get to tutor anything. Maybe this deck is a really stupid ide– nah, let’s just go for it!

Shivers and Shakes

Shivers and Shakes is a deck that gives your opponent indigestion with [c]Delver of Secrets[/c] and [c]Nightveil Specter[/c], before giving them chest-constricting heartburn with [c]Maralen of the Mornsong[/c], leading into the shivering, cold-sweat nightmare of [c]Ob Nixilis, Unshackled[/c]. To keep your opponent from killing you with their first tutor, the deck has numerous counter spells.

There’s one important caveat to the Maralen-Ob Nixilis combo – you need to have a total of six lands (on the battlefield and in your hand) before casting Maralen. Otherwise you will need to tutor first for land, a bad idea.

Unless, of course… unless you have [c]Bitter Revelation[/c] in your hand to dig for more land. Which brings us to the issue of card draw.

Shutting down all forms of card draw is indeed a powerful effect. It was better during the reign of [c]Treasure Cruise[/c] but is still relevant against many decks in the meta. It is especially useful if you can still put cards in your hand using the various ‘reveal and keep’ mechanics that do not use the keyword ‘draw.’ [c]Fact or Fiction[/c] would be perhaps the best choice here, but I didn’t pick up any copies in time for this article. I had [c]Bitter Revelation[/c] in my collection so I went with that.

Let it be said, however, that a stronger version of this deck (such as my paper version) includes [c]Jace, Architect of Thought[/c] and [c]Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver[/c] as stronger methods to build card advantage. They allow Maralen to come down as early as turn 3 (tutoring for Ashiok on turn 4 if you are playing a creature deck, or Jace to get another card or two immediately).

I mention those cards because they change the deck into something that can truly give your opponent the shivers. But let’s stick within our budget! This is what we have:

[d title=”Shivers and Shakes (Modern)”]

Lands

4 Drowned Catacomb
2 Exotic Orchard
1 Bojuka Bog
1 Dimir Aqueduct

2 Dismal Backwater
6 Island
8 Swamp

Creatures

2 Oona’s Gatewarden

3 Delver of Secrets
4 Nightveil Specter
4 Maralen of the Mornsong
2 Ob Nixilis, Unshackled

Spells

2 Dispel

2 Despise

2 Duress

2 Extirpate

2 Mana Leak

2 Negate

2 Dissipate

1 Soul Manipulation

1 Quash

2 Bitter Revelation

2 Aetherize

1 Murder

Sideboard

2 Echoing Truth

3 Trickbind

2 Dissipate

1 Aetherize

1 Quash

2 Memoricide

2 Murderous Cut

2 Nihil Spellbomb [/d]

Ideal gameflow

T1: Play a Delver. Cross your fingers. [c]Duress[/c] or [c]Despise[/c] are also an option.
T2: If you crossed your fingers properly, your Delver flips. Keep [c]Mana Leak[/c] mana open.
T3: Play a [c]Nightveil Specter[/c]. Duress or Despise here – anything to throw off your opponent’s game plan.
T4: Another Delver or Specter, or counter spell mana open.
T5: If you have enough land, play Maralen here. It is highly preferable that you have 5 land down and keep [c]Mana Leak[/c] open to deal with whatever your opponent tutors.
T6: Tutor for Ob Nixilis and play it. If your opponent can’t counter or remove it, you should win the game.
T7: If Ob Nixilis did not work, swing with Delvers and Specters and hope for the best!

Sideboard

[c]Aetherize[/c], [c]Echoing Truth[/c] and [c]Murderous Cut[/c] will be the most frequently picked replacements, and a smattering of additional counter spells and strippers round out the sideboard. More testing is needed to see what this deck really needs here.

Let me know what you’d add or change in the comments!

Here are some videos of the deck in action.

Paupers and Kings, Ep. 9: Hypermana

Voyaging Satyr

Hi everyone, and welcome to the ninth episode of Paupers & Kings, my series on porting Pauper decks into the Modern format while staying on a budget. Today we’re ramping up to talk about … well, ramp. We’ve got Tooth and Nail to look at in Modern and Eldrazi Green to check out in Pauper. Let’s take a look!

Hypermana in Pauper

Partially inspired by Alex Ullman’s article on SCG last year, I wanted to take a look at the hypermana concept in both formats. Below we have Alex’s list from the article, and his write-up is more detailed than I will get here.

[d title=”Eldrazi Green by Alex Ullman (Pauper)”]
Land
18 Snow-Covered Forest
2 Haunted Fengraf

Ramp
4 Voyaging Satyr
4 Arbor Elf
4 Utopia Sprawl
4 Wild Growth

Creatures
4 Nylea’s Disciple
1 Fangren Marauder
4 Nest Invader
3 Ulamog’s Crusher
4 Aurochs Herd
4 Llanowar Sentinel
2 Fierce Empath
2 Krosan Tusker

Sideboard
1 Fangren Marauder
4 Scattershot Archer
3 Wickerbough Elder
1 Calming Verse
4 Thermokarst
2 Moment’s Peace [/d]

The plan in brief is to get a lot of mana early and play things like [c]Ulamog’s Crusher[/c] by turn 3. Nest Invader provides ramp and early blockers when necessary, while Krosan Tusker can help ramp or come down late game as a big body.

As I was playing it, I found the list to be vulnerable to flyers, so I would add some Spidersilk Armor into the sideboard I think to shore up those matches.

Hypermana in Modern

Tooth and Nail could also be called Eldrazi Green, by rights, since it is a mono-green shell that ramps up and (often) wins by getting Emrakul on the board. The key players are Emrakul, Xenagos, and Tooth and Nail. Everything else serves to ramp into the combo or protect you while you get there.

[d title=”Tooth and Nail (Modern)”]
Land
22 Forest

Ramp
4 Arbor Elf
4 Voyaging Satyr
4 Overgrowth
4 Utopia Sprawl
1 Garruk Wildspeaker
1 Garruk, Primal Hunter

Creatures
3 Acidic Slime
2 Eternal Witness
1 Xenagos, God of Revels
1 Emrakul, the Aeons Torn
1 Wurmcoil Engine

Spells
4 Harmonize
2 Primal Command
4 Tooth and Nail
2 Beast Within

Sideboard
1 Beast Within
4 Creeping Corrosion
4 Creeping Mold
2 Eyes of the Wisent
4 Naturalize [/d]

The deck is surprisingly resilient for a combo deck. While your opponent may counter your Tooth and Nails, you will eventually be able to hard-cast Emrakul if they take too long, and there often isn’t much that can be done after that. Wurmcoil is a key player against aggressive lists like burn and the deck can often get him down early enough to actually make a difference.

Xenagos is a key enabler here and the component that makes it so your wincon happens the same turn (not the next turn). Attacking with Emrakul is always fun, but even better when she is 30/30 and has haste. Getting in with a 12/12 lifelink wurm is also quite strong and, if it won’t win you the game outright, will often do so in a turn or two.

Cost-wise you’re looking at just 45 tix or so online to put the list together, or about $155 in paper. If you’ve picked up some of the spendier staples already (Emrakul, Wurmcoil, Primal Command) then the list costs almost nothing to try out. Make sure you find the inexpensive [c]Garruk Wildspeaker[/c] so you can save a couple tix. I got mine off Cardhoarder as MTGOTraders didn’t have any in stock at the time, though it appears they do have one now.

Hypermana on the Play

We definitely ramped, but did we crush? I played three matches with Eldrazi Green and lots and lots (and lots) of matches with Tooth and Nail. I’ve rotated them in the playlist by format for your viewing pleasure.

 

In a way, Eldrazi Green seems a bit “fair” in the current Pauper format. People have answers to Crusher and other big threats, and countermagic is a big component of the game right now, which stymies our plan somewhat. Tooth and Nail, on the other hand, was surprisingly resilient (it only needs to get one fatty out and that’s the game, usually), though it did have an issue on occasion with faster aggressive decks.

Next week on Paupers and Kings

Next week will be the 10th and last episode of Paupers and Kings, where we will look at Affinity in both formats. Thanks for tuning in and I hope you’ve enjoyed the series!

Until then, may your utopias always be sprawling.

/bava

Legacy on Mondays: Or You Could Just Play Burn

Welcome Back!

In this series, my goal is to get newer Legacy players into the format without breaking the bank. There are serious signs that the Legacy format is in decline, as one of the biggest supporters of the format, Star City Games, has relegated most of their opens to Standard, and made Legacy a Sunday-only IQ event. Some Wizards of the Coast employees have stated that they just “do not like” the format, and many are shying away from playing for Modern and Standard.

I do not want this to happen. Legacy is a very fun format, and its interactions and playstyle are distinct from those in other formats. I want you guys to get into this format however you can.

As for me, I initially just wanted a taste of the format, but once I got started I just wanted to play more eternal. Even if you just have a little bit of money to start playing, you can go to those Sunday IQs with a budget deck and still have the chance to clean house.

Last week I talked about how to get some staples to start the format if you do not want to play a budget deck, and instead wanted to get something quite competitive, but over a longer period of time. If there is a Legacy FNM (rare, to say the least!) in your area and you want to be there within a month, this article is for you. I am going to show you three decks, all of which can be acquired for a reasonable Legacy deck price, that you can play without buying a bunch of staples. And yes, one of them is Burn.

Let’s start with that, shall we?

I. Burn

[d title=”Burn by Peyton”]
Red Fire Dudes
4 Goblin Guide
4 Eidolon of the Great Revel
3 Grim Lavamancer
Sudden Red Fire
4 Lightning Bolt
4 Fireblast
4 Price of Progress
3 Searing Blaze
Slower Red Fire
4 Lava Spike
4 Rift Bolt
4 Chain Lightning
Red Fire That Sticks Around
2 Sulfuric Vortex
Realms of Red Fire
4 Wooded Foothills
4 Bloodstained Mire
12 Mountain
Sideboard of Hate (And more Red Fire)
2 Sulfuric Vortex
3 Mindbreak Trap
2 Red Elemental Blast
3 Smash to Smithereens
3 Relic of Progenitus
2 Ashen Rider
[/d]

This is my own list of Burn, and one that I am in the process of buying so that I can take it to a larger event which is pretty close to me in a few weeks. Note that I am meta’ing Burn; I do not expect much red hate and want to capitalize somewhat. I also like [c]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/c] in Legacy right now. Anyway, this deck has become even cheaper since Khans reprinted eight red fetches for us to use. [c]Grim Lavamancer[/c] is an amazing tool against decks like Death and Taxes, and there must be fetchlands to enable ol’ Grim.

Fetchlands increase the overall consistency of the deck through thinning, as well as enabling [c]Searing Blaze[/c] as a powerful card against creature decks. Optimally, this should be a 10-10 split for fetch/[c]Mountain[/c] ratio, but for an extra $60, I cannot justify adding two [c]Arid Mesa[/c] just for a slightly better ratio. Do not do it unless you are a serious Burn player, in which case you should also buy [c]Ensnaring Bridge[/c] for your sideboard.

This brings me to the attractiveness of this particular list. It plays the reprinted cheap fetches, an effective Burn maindeck without sacrificing key components for price, and the sideboard is effective yet budget-minded. The current TCGplayer cost of this deck after optimization for direct shipping at moderately played or better condition is as follows (sans Mountain):

Burn Price

At just under $350, this deck can be picked up without a lot of prior experience and win games. It is the perfect example of how speed meets consistency that has stood the test of time. Go out there and burn some face!

II. Manaless Dredge

[d title=”Manaless Dredge, Fairly Stock List by Peyton”]
A TON of Creatures that Do Graveyard Stuff
4 Balustrade Spy
2 Flayer of the Hatebound
4 Golgari Grave-Troll
4 Golgari Thug
4 Ichorid
4 Narcomoeba
4 Nether Shadow
4 Phantasmagorian
3 Shambling Shell
4 Stinkweed Imp
4 Street Wraith
Stuff that Works from the Graveyard
4 Bridge from Below
4 Cabal Therapy
4 Dread Return
Some Enablers
4 Gitaxian Probe
3 Mishra’s Bauble
Narrow Sideboard
4 Leyline of Sanctity
4 Leyline of the Void
4 Mindbreak Trap
2 Sickening Shoal
1 Ashen Rider
[/d]

Manaless Dredge is a newer deck that operates on discarding a dredger or the powerful [c]Phantasmagorian[/c] turn one, and then discarding a bunch of dredgers or dredging the following turn to pile up a graveyard quickly. The deck can combo kill as early as turn two with a [c]Balustrade Spy[/c] milling everything, then reanimating a [c]Flayer of the Hatebound[/c] followed by a huge Grave Troll for the win. You can also lock out the opponent with [c]Iona, Shield of Emeria[/c] if she is a more readily available win condition.

The deck is not overly expensive, but MUST play four white Leyline in the sideboard to shore up the Burn and Storm match-ups. Those are likely to be disastrous game one, as you cannot interact and must combo kill before they do. [c]Mindbreak Trap[/c] is also important, as the Storm player can potentially remove a turn zero Leyline before combo. These cards are not cheap. Creature decks can also be pretty hard, so a couple of post-board options like [c]Contagion[/c] or [c]Sickening Shoal[/c] are needed to ensure victory. Otherwise, Iona isn’t cheap, and neither are typical dredge pieces.

Here is the cost of the entire deck, following the same criteria as before:

Dredge price

The deck only costs a bit more than Burn, and this is mostly because 4 [c]Leyline of Sanctity[/c] is a $120 investment straight away. I am honestly not sure which is a “better” deck. Dredge can certainly be faster and more powerful in certain matchups and metagames, but some metas are just rife with graveyard hate. The same can be said for Burn, but Manaless Dredge can also just win before the opponent assembles some hate, which is less likely for the Burn deck.

The other nice thing about playing Manaless Dredge is that it opens the possibility for playing normal, mana-infused Dredge in the future, which I personally prefer. Normal Dredge has better answers to hate, and is potentially equally explosive if not more so a la [c]Lion’s Eye Diamond[/c]. If you like cool combo for little monetary investment, this is the one for you.

III. Enchantress

[d title=”Legit Enchantress by Peyton”]
Enchantments
3 Elephant Grass
2 Exploration
3 Mirri’s Guile
4 Utopia Sprawl
4 Wild Growth
2 Rest in Peace
4 Enchantress’s Presence
3 Sterling Grove
1 Oblivion Ring
3 Solitary Confinement
1 Sigil of the Empty Throne

Enchanted Ladies (And Cthulhu)
4 Argothian Enchantress
1 Emrakul, the Aeons Torn

Enchanted Realms
4 Serra’s Sanctum
4 Windswept Heath
1 Plains
11 Forest

Magical Enchanted Lady Finder (And sometimes some short guy)
4 Green Sun’s Zenith
Lonely Metal Hat
1 Helm of Obedience

Wicked Hateboard
3 Stony Silence
2 Oblivion Ring
1 Curse of Exhaustion
4 Leyline of Sanctity
3 Carpet of Flowers
1 Choke
1 Gaddock Teeg [/d]

This one is a bit of a shocker to be on here, and is the most pricey of the three decks. Unlike the others, I would like to start with this deck’s price point:

burn

Enchantress Price

Clearly, that is a lot higher than Burn or Dredge, by a margin of $200. Then why in the heck is it in this article? Well, for a Legacy deck, $570 is a surprisingly low number. For those of you unfamiliar with Enchantress, it is basically a combo deck that chains together an insane number of enchantments while drawing cards with the Enchantresses and their Presences while maintaining a [c]Solitary Confinement[/c] lock. The deck wins with Helm/RIP, a hard cast Flying Spaghetti Monster, or a ton of Sigil angels.

The deck is older and has barely seen any play at all in recent years. That being said, I think the deck could make a comeback. For a reasonable amount of money, this deck crushes aggro and most tempo decks, and has great post-board game against most combo and control decks. If you want to invest a bit more in the format, and get a “true” competitive (albeit declining) deck, I highly recommend Enchantress. This list would benefit from one maindeck [c]Karakas[/c], but this is not necessary for it to function.

That’s all for this week. I hope you have found the article helpful! If you have any questions or comments, post them below or email me at [email protected]

Thanks for reading, and I will see you next week when I talk about how to pick, build, and play a deck with those staples you bought. Cheers!

/Peyton