Affinity in Legacy

  • #1
    The old thread is a bit out of date so I decided to start a new one. First, let me start with my build:

    Lands:
    Creatures

    Non-Creatures
    Sideboard (Based on Metagame Mostly, This is Rough)

    We need to look at some card choices first. The most obvious choice is to cut Myr Enforcer in favor of Tangle Wire. I have found Tangle Wire to be very helpful in many of Affinity’s matches. Against Goblins (Are they still relevant?) it can hurt a lot if you hit it turn three on the play, as long as they don’t have vial active, even if they do it can still slow them down that crucial half turn that you need to pull ahead. Against landstill it is basically a Time Walk for Three, and can help your match up against them a lot. Also against Goyf.dec It forces your opponent to make the decision to attack with Goyf and not play spells or tap him. Tangle Wire also gives you little negatives as you can easily tap it for its own abilities as well as tap Cranial Plating or Disciple to it. I feel that Tangle Wire is the stronger choice.

    The next major card choice is the old debate between Shrapnel Blast,Berserk, and Fling. In my current metagame, there is a lot of control; therefore Shrapnel Blast is the better option. However if your meta were very agro or very combo oriented I would highly recommend Fling. Both cards are good however Fling has the potential to win you games you have no business winning, however in my area, it will most likely get Forced or Counterspelled in some form.

    The only other potential card choices are whether or not to include Atog. Since I cut Fling I have not been to excited with Atog. He is really weak against Goyf because he needs to add artifacts to the yard to grow big. He is however a sacrifice engine for Disciple, however I have considered cutting them for more Chromatic Stars or even a more relevant card against Goyf. For now they stay though.

    We also need to take a look at Affinity’s Match Ups against other decks.

    Against Reset/High Tide: 60/40 in Affinity’s Favor

    You have 4ish turns to win the game. It is basically a race. They have limited counter magic and Tangle Wire can shut them down. Play as aggressively as possible and race them to zero. Normally you should be able to race them effectively. This deck has lost popularity lately, however you should be able to beat them both pre and post board.

    Against Goblins: 45/55 in Goblin’s Favor depending on Board Tech.

    This is a hardcore race. If they resolve Goblin Lackey on first turn, and you don’t have anything to stop it will be bad for you. On the other hand, if you can get plating active then you stand a good chance of winning. Games two and Three E-Plague is good however they have a lot of sideboard outs normally. Everything from Null Rod to Ancient Grudge is devastating for you. Whether or not you win these games depends on how much hate they have for you.

    Against CRET Belcher/Tendrils Combo/ Any Non-Reset Combo 20/80 in Combo’s Favor

    All the combos are lumped together for analysis. Affinity has a hard time in this match up. You run zero counter spells and zero anti-combo tools main deck. They are really fast and you only have a slim chance. Your best hope is that they make like, 8 1/1’s and you can just stall and block for the win. Combo has been declining in popularity lately however, you still loose to it.

    Against UG/w/r (whatever color combination) Goyf: ~60/40 if Affinity Player is Competent.

    This match can be very swingy. If you resolve an Aether Vial on turn one, followed by a Tangle Wire turn three, it is very hard for you to loose. This game normally comes down to who makes less mistakes. If you play aggressively, but not stupidly (ex. Running your Ravager into a Daze) you should be fine. You are faster and your creatures are better. This game generally comes down to a final attack phase that involves jumping modular counters around like crazy. If you were serious about building Affinity, I would highly recommend that you test this match up thoroughly. Post board, I have found Terror to be all right however I have been exploring other options. Anyone who has suggestions, please let me know.

    Overall I believe Affinity is a strong deck that is not always given much thought. This testing has come from myself, my teammates, (Woot! Team LuckSack) and against randoms on workshop (those results not taken to be entirely accurate). I have been playing this deck for about a year with mixed results. I top eighted at Grand Prix Trial Columbus-Columbus and only lost due to a play error on my part with this deck, I also top eighted at the Soldiery Legacy tournament about a month before the Grand Prix.

    This deck can put up results, however it does need more work. That is where Salvation comes in. What would you all do to improve this deck? Do you have any suggestions for the main deck or sideboard?

    Thanks for your help!

    @ MODS: If this needs to be moved to a different sub-topic please do so.

    Moved to Developing Competitive - YuanTi
    Last edited by Kaimera: 9/30/2007 6:07:40 PM
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  • #2
    Two words: Null Rod.

    Either you have to take away artifact lands to be able to cast spells after a Null Rod hits - in which case, your Affinity isn't doing as much for you - or you need a way to deal with The Rod that costs 0 mana.

    Those are tough to come by, though.

    Until you solve the Null Rod problem, your Game 1 had better be freakin' fantastic, because their Games 2 & 3 end when Null Rod hits.

    I've been chewing the gristle on this bone for some time - a solution to Null Rod. If you come up with one, let me know.

    Edit: Well hey! Mogg Salvage! Hmm...

    Edit 2: Other options - Abolish (but we'd need white / Plains), Crash, which requires mountains in play, and Pulverize - man, wouldn't THAT suck.
    Last edited by ThatGuyThere: 9/27/2007 4:12:30 PM
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  • #3
    How often is Null Rod played anyway? I don't see it in many mainstream lists - it might be worrying about too much, especially since Affinity isn't exactly the deck to beat in Legacy, and Null Rod isn't too useful against most other decks.
  • #4
    Quote from Fayf
    How often is Null Rod played anyway? I don't see it in many mainstream lists - it might be worrying about too much, especially since Affinity isn't exactly the deck to beat in Legacy, and Null Rod isn't too useful against most other decks.


    In my meta, quite a bit - because 3 sideboarded Null Rods handle all sorts of problems.

    And it will limit the ability of Affinity to be competitive, until it can win against Null Rod. If Affinity waxes strong, in comes the hate - if the metagame isn't ready, Affinity might be fast enough to punch through and score some unlikely wins.
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  • #5
    Quote from Kaimera
    The next major card choice is the old debate between Shrapnel Blast,Berserk, and Fling. In my current metagame, there is a lot of control; therefore Shrapnel Blast is the better option. However if your meta were very agro or very combo oriented I would highly recommend Fling. Both cards are good however Fling has the potential to win you games you have no business winning, however in my area, it will most likely get Forced or Counterspelled in some form.


    That is not a valid reason to run Shrapnel Blast over Fling. They will have counterspells no matter which card you are running. The fact that you are running the most retarded card legal for Affinity, that being Cranial Plating, means that you should run Fling. However, multiple people running Divert, Misdirection, and Honorable Passage in their main deck is. Fling should almost always be run over Shrapnel Blast, except in the face of those and a rare few other cards.


    On the Null Rod argument; Null Rod does not see much play in most metas, but usually most Affinity decks have answers for it in their sideboard anyways. Cards like Shattering Spree, Oxidize, Overload, and Krosan Grip are good. Grip only being good if you have it with 3 mana available before the rod hits, or seeing 3 Glimmervoids.
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  • #6
    Quote from Complete_Jank

    On the Null Rod argument; Null Rod does not see much play in most metas, but usually most Affinity decks have answers for it in their sideboard anyways. Cards like Shattering Spree, Oxidize, Overload, and Krosan Grip are good. Grip only being good if you have it with 3 mana available before the rod hits, or seeing 3 Glimmervoids.


    I'm not disagreeing - I don't travel much. But Affinity, every forum I look at for Legacy, gets a serious drubbing. I've always assumed it was Null Rod, because that's what it is in our / my meta.

    ...what is it, elsewhere?
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  • #7
    Energy Flux and Kataki, War's Wage are the best hosers, but control decks like BHWC Landstill and others that run Pernicious Deed main are the big reason why so many people say Affinity is so bad.
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  • #8
    Quote from Complete_Jank
    Energy Flux and Kataki, War's Wage are the best hosers, but control decks like BHWC Landstill and others that run Pernicious Deed main are the big reason why so many people say Affinity is so bad.


    It seems the majority of the Affinity countermeasures are based on one thing: Artifact Lands.

    Can the deck work with fewer / no artifact lands? Can we use 0-cost artifacts - Mox Diamond, Chrome Moxes, Phyrexian Walker ... ... others I can't think of... - to get around the problem?
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  • #9
    0-cost artifacts are just as bad as artifact lands. They are like the lands, but require card disadvantage, or don't tap for mana. They also die to Pernicious Deed.
    Needs more Tarmogoyf.
  • #10
    It seems the majority of the Affinity countermeasures are based on one thing: Artifact Lands.
    Null rod also nukes cranial plating and ravager (and, by extension, disciple of the vault), not just artifact lands, robbing affinity of most of its offensive punch, not just speed.

    The countermeasures only seem like to target artifact lands, simply because they're the most numerous artifacts in the deck and the countermeasures are very, very effective against mass numbers (pernicious deed acts like geddon, kataki and energy flux eats everything, etc). I mean, why run specific solutions against creatures when you can hit creatures _and_ land with a single rather low cc card?
    Last edited by mondu_the_fat: 9/28/2007 5:40:45 PM

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  • #11
    Quote from Complete_Jank
    That is not a valid reason to run Shrapnel Blast over Fling. They will have counterspells no matter which card you are running. The fact that you are running the most retarded card legal for Affinity, that being Cranial Plating, means that you should run Fling. However, multiple people running Divert, Misdirection, and Honorable Passage in their main deck is. Fling should almost always be run over Shrapnel Blast, except in the face of those and a rare few other cards.


    Wrong. Fling is an awful topdeck mid-to-late game after board sweepers or combat. Shrapnel Blast is a guaranteed 5. Fling is a sometimes win more, sometimes nothing.
  • #12
    I disassembled and effectively destroyed my Affinity deck (traded away ravagers :D), and do not regret it. Needle wrecked me. I think needle is fine to stop it. The argument against this would be that there's too much stuff to name. First to be named is the aforementioned screwup called Cranial Plating. Then Ravager or Atog. Depending on what deck you are running, you will have other defenses as well, so it's not like you are dependent upon 4 cards to stop Affinity. I've not really ever had a problem against it with Stax...But that's to be expected.

    Affinity seems to be the weakest deck in legacy.
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  • #13
    Not really. There's no "weakest" deck as there is no "best" deck in the format.

    Legacy Affinity still has speed, which means it always has a chance to steal games. There's also a lot of builds for Affinity, so each one has their own strengths and weaknesses:

    1. UBR - ordinary Affinity with Thoughtcasts and Enforcers
    2. BR - Eschews Thoughtcasts and Enforcers for Dark Confidants and more space for disruption (e.g. Cabal Therapy) -- this is my personal favorite among the builds I know
    3. AfFoWnity - aggro-control in an affinity shell

    Affinity will never die because in a field as diverse as Legacy, you can't always expect to run into hosers all the time. It will never be able to grab a chokehold on Legacy like it did in its Standard days, but it's still pretty viable.
  • #14
    Quote from cartman_1337

    Affinity seems to be the weakest deck in legacy.


    Affinity is like Dragon in Vintage. Will win easily if there is no hate against it, but there are several easy ways to hate it out of the metagame.
  • #15
    Well here in Finland someone won a Legacy tournament with this, the deck is called Affowinity:
    JunioRcmf's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    Artifact land - 8
    4 Darksteel Citadel
    4 Seat of Synod

    Nonartifact Land - 7
    3 Wasteland
    4 Ancient Tomb

    Artifact - 13
    4 Chrome Mox
    4 Chalice of the Void
    4 Cranial Plating
    1 Umezawa's Jitte

    Artifact Creature - 16
    4 Ornithopter
    4 Arcbound Ravager
    4 Frogmite
    4 Myr Enforcer

    Blue Creature - 8
    4 Cloud of Faeries
    4 Somber Hovergaurd

    Instant - 8
    4 Thoughtcast
    4 Force of Will



    I'm not sure what he was using in sideboard but the original deck (he netdecked the deck) was using this kind of sideboard:
    JunioRcmf's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards


    Match-ups he listed:
    Welder.dec
    Burn
    IGGy Pop
    Affinity
    Pox
    and if I'm correct he won all of those.
    More about the deck you can find here (that is where he netdecked the deck).
    Last edited by JunioRcmf: 9/29/2007 11:20:11 AM
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    Currently building:
    W 'Geddon Stax (Legacy)
    WBR Wildfire Stax (German Highlander)
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  • #16
    Quote from kicks_422

    Affinity will never die because *it's about the cheapest deck you can build in Legacy.*


    Fixt. No offense, but seriously, no duals. No fetches. In most builds, no Force of Wills. Ravager is the most expensive card in the most common build, and it's 5 bux tops. Even with Confidants, what 7 bux each? BTW, the Affownity build is overrated. I used to play Ravager for a while, but quickly saw that it wasn't a good choice against Thresh or Stax. IDK about Goblins, but I'd say that it's a bit in the gobbo's favor, just from playing ravagers and playing against goblins.

    you can't always expect to run into hosers all the time.


    I'm not sure I believe that there isn't a metagame where no one runs needles. They seem to be a pretty solid 3-of in almost every competitive sideboard.

    ON TOPIC:::

    In my last build, which was the most common build (UBR version), I added in Remands. I used 3. I felt that additional draw (running out of fuel early on was a problem if I encountered even the most feeble disruption) was necessary and that tempo disruption gave me the edge a good percentage of the time. Also, after SB'ing, Remanding a spell and then Cabal Therapy is a good thing. Gives serious Disruption. It makes the Therapy better, as I know I'm getting rid of at least one card of theirs, and then shows me their hand for the free flashback and another actual discard.

    This is just my experience.
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  • #17
    Thanks for all the comments guys. I feel as if my decision to play Shrapnel Blast over Fling and Berserk needs more justification. I have found that in every match up except Combo w/ no Counter Spells and Goblins, Fling is a poor card to play. If Fling gets countered after you have sacrificed all your artifacts to it, then it becomes a one sided Wrath of God and Armageddon toward yourself. If Shrapnel Blast gets countered, you only loose a land or a non relevant creature. Cranial Plating can win games on its own without Fling's help. When goblins was dominant, Fling was the best card to run. Now that all these agro-control decks are dominant, Fling becomes a much weaker card.
    Berserk is also a weak card because of its color. Adding Green really messes with the mana base and can hurt you in the long run. I have yet to test Fatal Frenzy but it might be interesting to try, perhaps in a B/R version with Blue cut.
    I have seen people mention a B/R version. Does anyone have a list for reference? This would be very helpful as I would like to test with it.
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  • #18
    @ cartman: Well, yeah, that too. But even if that's true, why does it still win games? Do tournaments now give free byes to decks without duals?

    And besides, Needles don't really kill the deck as much as Energy Flux and Kataki does.

    @ kaimera: I can't exactly remember how my BR build looked like, but it was something like this:

    kicks_422's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    4 Vault of Whispers
    4 Great Furnace
    4 Tree of Tales
    4 Darksteel Citadel
    2 Glimmervoid

    3 Ornithopter
    4 Disciple of the Vault
    4 Arcbound Worker
    4 Arcbound Ravager
    4 Atog
    4 Frogmite
    4 Dark Confidant
    4 Frogmite

    4 Aether Vial
    4 Cranial Plating
    4 Chromatic Star
    3 Cabal Therapy

  • #19
    Quote from kicks_422
    @ cartman: Well, yeah, that too. But even if that's true, why does it still win games? Do tournaments now give free byes to decks without duals?


    I'm not saying that Affinity doesn't still win games, I'm just saying that most of the time, it's a poor metagame choice and is easily hated against. To win a tourney with it, you need to be in the right metagame with the level of skill to pilot it flawlessly. Mistakes are hard to recover from in the deck.

    And of course tourneys give free byes to decks without duals. Grin Rolleyes

    And besides, Needles don't really kill the deck as much as Energy Flux and Kataki does.


    Right, but Needle is by far the most used card that can hate on Affinity. I was making a point about metagames and how common it is to find Needles in SB's.
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  • #20
    Quote from Kaimera
    Thanks for all the comments guys. I feel as if my decision to play Shrapnel Blast over Fling and Berserk needs more justification. I have found that in every match up except Combo w/ no Counter Spells and Goblins, Fling is a poor card to play. If Fling gets countered after you have sacrificed all your artifacts to it, then it becomes a one sided Wrath of God and Armageddon toward yourself. If Shrapnel Blast gets countered, you only loose a land or a non relevant creature. Cranial Plating can win games on its own without Fling's help. When goblins was dominant, Fling was the best card to run. Now that all these agro-control decks are dominant, Fling becomes a much weaker card.


    You don't use Fling as an alpha strike or finisher when your opponent has the ability to counter it or disrupt it. You use it in response to a wipe or other removal. You keep presure on against your opponent, and in the case of Cranial Plating, Flinging an Ornithopter equiped with one is great for forcing your opponent to waste a counter. Fling is better, but knowing how to play the deck is the best. You don't have to sacrifice everything to make a Fling a huge threat, and something your opponent has to deal with.
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  • #21
    Quote from Complete_Jank
    You don't use Fling as an alpha strike or finisher when your opponent has the ability to counter it or disrupt it. You use it in response to a wipe or other removal. You keep presure on against your opponent, and in the case of Cranial Plating, Flinging an Ornithopter equiped with one is great for forcing your opponent to waste a counter. Fling is better, but knowing how to play the deck is the best. You don't have to sacrifice everything to make a Fling a huge threat, and something your opponent has to deal with.


    This still doesn't take into account how abysmal Fling is when topdecked after an attrition war or, generally, any time you don't have a creature in play.
  • #22
    Quote from emidln
    This still doesn't take into account how abysmal Fling is when topdecked after an attrition war or, generally, any time you don't have a creature in play.


    Fling is stronger in more matchups then Shrapnel Blast, and more often than not the extra push needed to win against some decks. What match-up would you rather have Shrapnel Blast?
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  • #23
    I honestly have no idea how I manage to fit it all in, but I run at least three copies of both fling and shrapnel blast. Of course, I run a build of affinity that has yet to be touched on by anyone in this particular thread so far. I will list it and share why I feel it works better than vial affinity OR afFOWnity. (I have no experience with the wanky B/R build so I'm not sure whether I'd prefer it to that).

    Winston_Smith's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    Lands x 16
    4x Seat of the Synod
    4x Great Furnace
    4x Vault of Whispers
    4x Darksteel Citadel

    Creatures x 24
    4x Ornithopter
    4x Frogmite
    4x Myr Enforcer
    4x Arcbound Ravager
    4x Atog
    4x Disciple of the Vault

    Artifacts x 8
    4x Cranial Plating
    4x Paradise Mantle

    Sorceries x 4
    4x Thoughtcast

    Instants x 8
    4x Shrapnel Blast
    4x Fling


    NOW THEN....you'll notice the number one thing missing from this build is Aether Vial. Obviously this can be weaker for the deck in general as it provides no resistance to counterspells, but the replacement of aether vial with Paradise Mantle improves several other aspects of the deck. First of all, it is a zero casting cost artifact that speeds up your affinity count. It is very possible to get out turn one frogmite with the mantles in the main deck. Secondly, it provides some limited resistance to null rod, one of the primary hosers for affinity and a sideboard strategy that, as an artifact, is available to every color. By equipping mantle to a colored creature such as Atog or Disciple of the Vault, you can still access colored mana after null rod has hit and nullified your artifact lands. This is doubly important because the mantle build does not run any copies of glimmervoid or other non-artifact lands, allowing more space for aggressive creatures and spells. Finally, mantle fixes your mana, allowing for disciple of the vault to get played even when you have no Vaults in play.

    Another noticeable change is the lack of Arcbound Workers in the deck, which have been a staple of affinity since its standard days. This omission is also due in part to the paradise mantles in the main, because rather than playing an arcbound worker on turn one in this deck you frequently would rather either a) play frogmite for 1 off an artifact land, mantle + ornithopter or b) make your first turn ornithopter into a 0/2 birds of paradise.

    As for the fling/shrapnel blast argument, it almost always makes sense to board one out after the first game. Against counterspells, (threshold and some landstill) board out fling. Against board-wiping effects, keep it in for a response play. Against Goblins, fling is practically your main win condition. They will almost always have more creatures clogging up the ground than you and the best method you have of getting past them is to build up a large number of artifacts and fling a really fat atog at their face. (Or attack with a slightly less powered ornithopter powered with plating and then fling it at their face)

    Playing threshold is very reliant on your ability to build up lots of dudes and rush past them. You pack many more creatures and your biggest fear from them is a very fast start and counterspells on your a) disciple of the vault or b) arcbound ravager. The best advice for this matchup is to attack, see what they block, and then start sacrificing things to whichever atog or ravager you can get through. Ornithopter OR that hoverguard guy that some builds run are gold here as they have few options against flyers. UGw is much easier than UGr, which has annoying removal for your best creatures.

    Combo matchups range from bad to terrible. The board can help out some (the one listed is very untuned) but most of the time the faster combo decks (tendrils variants and belcher) are going to roll over you. Your only game plan is to move as fast as possible and try to hit key spells with whatever you've got from the board. Graveyard based combo may be slightly easier but I have less experience in that area. Extirpate is good, as is Tormod's Crypt (especially the latter conssidering it is a 0cc artifact).

    In any event, it is a solid list that doesn't lose so hard to null rod (although it's possible to beat people even when they run it-I once beat a guy with 2 affinity'd myr enforcers after he dropped a rod). Affinity is definitely a blast to play because of how fast it goes, and it's very fun to see how much you can drop on first turn-your whole hand comes down more frequently than you might think.
  • #24
    I've always had doubts on the validity of Mantle. It seems slow. I never seem to need mana, in fact, I find that I hit lands whenever I least need them. Color of mana isn't ever a problem because my mana base seems quite a bit stronger than yours.

    That's the problem I've had with the Mantle. You drop some lands to add in Mantles, where you wouldn't need the mantles if you had left the lands alone. The addition of 4 artifacts with the need of a creature without summoning sickness to be any good seems trivial, if not poor judgement overall.

    My manabase looked like this:

    4x Seat of the Synod
    4x Great Furnace
    4x Vault of Whispers
    3x Blinkmoth Nexus
    2x City of Brass
    1x Glimmervoid

    This did well for me, and in the Proven Competitive segment of Ravager Affinity, this is the manabase agreed upon by most players. It gives you 7 of each color of mana, not to mention gives you 2 colors that your artifact lands don't cover for SBing in Krosan Grips, etc.

    Also, a new idea is SBing in Berserks in place of your Flings for game 2. Or vice versa. Not sure which would have the greater effect.
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  • #25
    Quote from Winston_Smith
    I honestly have no idea how I manage to fit it all in, but I run at least three copies of both fling and shrapnel blast.

    ...

    Complete_Jank's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    Lands x 16
    4x Seat of the Synod
    4x Great Furnace
    4x Vault of Whispers
    4x Darksteel Citadel

    Creatures x 24
    4x Ornithopter
    4x Frogmite
    4x Myr Enforcer
    4x Arcbound Ravager
    4x Atog
    4x Disciple of the Vault

    Artifacts x 8
    4x Cranial Plating
    4x Paradise Mantle

    Sorceries x 4
    4x Thoughtcast

    Instants x 8
    4x Shrapnel Blast
    4x Fling




    I know how you fit all that in your deck. Your deck is missing Glimmervoid which reduces your land count, speed, and consistency. You have no AEther Vials which also reduces your consistency. Archbound Workers are not really a huge spot to miss, but an early turn drop can make the difference in the game on turn 3, as a worker can add 2 instead of 1 to damage, which can mean and additional 2 damage with a Fling, not to mention usually hitting for 1 on turn 2.
    In Vintage (Type 1) > Budget Deck Discussion forum:


    Nothing says budget help like receiving $5000 in recommendations.

    I guess leaving out Time Walk, Timetwister, and Ancestral Recall is budget.
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