[PRIMER] Bant Enchant

  • #1

    a.k.a.: Hexproof Auras, Bant Auras, Ghost Pants



    Explanation of the concept:
    Simple version: Put auras on a hexproof creature and blast away.
    Long version: Auras and hexproof creatures are essential parts of the strategy, but there are 4 options for supporting the concept that you'll have to choose between.
    • Ramp
    • Double Strike
    • Support Creatures
    • Support Spells

    Ramp accelerates the building of your voltron. This is important because you will often find yourself racing to deal damage before your opponent can find an answer. Double strike is another way to race. It is a better topdeck (mostly) and is a little bit more powerful than ramping but it is also conditional upon having a board state that needs the ability. You lose some consistency if you choose double strike cards. Support creatures are creatures that further your gameplan indirectly, for example through resiliency which allows you to avoid edict effects. Finally there are support spells which may add versatility to the deck by allowing us to react to our opponents' answers.


    The Deck in a 'vanilla' configuration: (Current as of 7/30/13)




    Explanation of Card Choices:

    Creatures:
    -Geist of Saint Traft - Core card. Always run 4.
    -Invisible Stalker - Core card. Always run 4.
    -Fiendslayer Paladin - This is a big help against R/x aggro lists and is a decent alternate target for your auras if the hexproofs aren't showing up. The pseudo-hexproof ability protects it from most of the common targeted creature control.
    -Voice of Resurgence - Fits the concept in lots of ways that may be hard to appreciate until you've seen him in action.
    -Avacyn's Pilgrim - Ramp and fix.

    Enchantments:
    -Ethereal Armor - Core card. Always run 4.
    -Rancor - Core card. Always run 4.
    -Spectral Flight - This is almost always going to be a 4. Granting Flight to your Geist of Saint Traft is very important.
    -Unflinching Courage - This replaces Gift of Orzhova. The extra toughness is very valuable and it's easier to cast.


    Instants:

    -Selesnya Charm - Not an absolutely essential spell. If you're looking for room to play around with the concept this is the most obvious card to cut.




    Bant Enchant was one of the most successful decks of DGM standard and it is still well-positioned with the release of M14. It is sometimes derided for simplicity but those of us who've played it for a while would be able to tell you that it is not so simple to play it well. Although it is true that sometimes you'll get a nuts draw that sequences itself and wins on turn 4 there will be many more games where your ability to mulligan, read the board and sequence your plays will be vital to your success.






    Alternate Card Choices:
    Co-Written with Bonerfleximus

    Cantrips: Abundant Growth is borderline main-deckable. In fact it was a fixture in the deck until recently. The others generally turn out to be less useful than they look at first. Curiosity - for example - might draw you an extra card but in a 4 turn game you'll never cast it. Or curiosity might prevent you from getting the fourth turn kill. Then you've got an extra card available to you on the fifth turn, but only if you survive that long.

    Abundant Growth - Draws a card, fixes mana, and synergizes extremely well with Ethereal Armor
    Elvish Visionary - Cantrips, acts as a body to attach Rancors to or pump with Ajani, costs zero cards but often requires opponent to play one card to remove.
    Think Twice - Card draw.
    Curiosity - Draws more cards on Invisible stalker
    Gift of Orzhova - This is a good aura but it's a little too pricy to run a full set.


    Tempo/Removal: These are often relevant - especially Feeling of Dread. Most of these are sideboard options.

    Feeling of Dread - Removes two creatures from two combats (either offensive or defensive) and pumps Quirion dryad twice
    Inaction Injunction - Removes a single creature from two combats (both offensive and defensive) and doesn't cost a card
    Detention Sphere - Potentially an X for 1 removal card, adds to the number of enchantments on board to synergize with ethereal armor
    Oblivion Ring - Same as D-sphere, can also hit D-sphere against U/W/x
    Supreme Verdict - This deck rarely commits more than one creature to the board. Can be used to gain card/tempo advantage any time an opponent overcommits
    Jace, Architect of Thought - Slows down agro, acts as card advantage, can force opponent to overcommitting into a board wipe
    Bonds of Faith - Enhances Invisible stalker, stops thragtusk and other creatures, acts as another enchantment for the board
    Arrest - Same deal as bonds of faith, can also stop other troublesome creatures such as Olivia, Niv Mizzix

    Charms: Both are good charms and are borderline main-deckable.

    Azorius Charm - Time-walk the opponent, allows you to swing and gain life rather than holding back a blocker, can be used to draw a card.
    Selesnya Charm- Not the favored charm anymore but still a strong choice.


    Beats: Most of these creatures are not worth playing. Even Restoration Angel and Thragtusk - both great creatures - are too high up the curve to help you. Our manabase is geared for 3 CMC or less. Remember that on turn 4 you're going to (hopefully) be casting 2-4 auras and dealing lethal damage. You need all of that mana to execute your combo - not Thragtusk.
    Everyone tries to fit Sigarda into the deck at first but you soon find out that she's too expensive to fit in here. If anyone comes up with a way to get consistent Sigarda kills I would love to hear it. I love the card but she's never been good enough for me. The same logic applies to Bruna as well.
    Loxodon Smiter on the other hand IS good enough for the sideboard and occasionally main-deck.

    Voice of Resurgence - Easier to cast than Strangleroot Geist and has a greater upside if everything goes right but Strangleroot is more consistent and shares a creature type with Geist of Saint Traft. Very close between these two. Can't go wrong either way.
    Loxodon Smiter - Good way to punish people who play Liliana of the Veil and good sideboard card.
    Quirion Dryad - Easy to cast threat that keeps getting bigger, lethal if not dealt with.
    Sigarda, Host of Herons - The pinnacle of creature types we want to play, high mana cost makes her slow
    Lone Revenant - Same deal as Sigarda, card advantage is rarely relevant unless accompanies by rancor
    Restoration Angel - Cantrips off Visionary, evasive that can dodge sorcery speed removal for a turn, recovers from board wipe, removes GoST from combat after attack declared, great defensive creature
    Thragtusk - This guy...
    Bruna, Light of Alabaster - Too expensive and too vulnerable.
    Fencing Ace - An alternate low CC creature with built in doublestrike. This guy is wicked with a Rancor on him but he's not a particularly good target for auras aside from that. Remains surprisingly popular. Maybe I'm missing something?


    Support for your beats: These are good sideboard cards that could find their way into a main-deck every now and then.

    Negate - Protection from most board wipes, enchantment removal, edict effects, or cards that you just really don't like.
    Ajani, Caller of the Pride - Amazing finisher. They see your board and think they have 1-2 more turns to live, drop Ajani and win. Can also be used to build board if you have a lot of tempo cards to protect him. If they decide to swing at Ajani you minimally gained 5 life and got a +1 counter for 3 mana.
    Divine Favor - Slows Agro, puts GoST / Stalker out of range of a lot of creatures power, gains life
    Nevermore - If you want to survive post-board you might have to be able to play this card effectively. Name Supreme Verdict or Paraselene for example.
    Increasing Savagery - This was used in all of the top tournament decks but I've removed it on recommendation of the winner himself. It is definitely worthy of consideration.


    Assessing your starting hand (Mulliganing) Written by Bonerfleximus

    Learning to mulligan properly is very important with this deck. You're playing 3 colors and a combo that needs to go off quickly. You can't afford to keep a hand that has too many lands, too few lands or the wrong type of lands. Bonerfleximus breaks it down for you.

    Learning how to mulligan with this deck or any deck comes with grinding and practice. As you play the deck more, you'll be able to see how each hand is likely to play out. This is only a rough outline of the thought process that goes into mulliganing with this deck, your experience with the deck and level of discipline will ultimately be the deciding factors!

    Two main things when assessing the starting hand:

    Assuming you draw no extra threats, when is the earliest you can put pressure on your opponent? Turn 3 is ideal, turn 4 is acceptable in most cases. Note that an invisible stalker with no enchantments does not count as "pressure"
    Assuming you draw only 1 colorless mana source by turn 3, how may dead cards do you have?


    If the answer to the above two questions are "Pressure on turn 3-4 and 2 or less dead cards", the hand is a keeper. If it's not, go through the below steps in order:


    1. Are you on the play or on the draw? If you're on the draw and you can put pressure on your opponent turns 3-4 you should usually keep the hand. The pressure is more important on the draw because your opponent is one step ahead of you and you get to draw an extra card. If you're on the play the dead cards aspect is important, but turn 3-4 pressure on the play will still usually be a keeper.
    1. What kind of deck is my opponent playing? Can I afford a slow hand?
    1. How many cantrips do I have and how many cards will I have drawn into by turn 3? A 7 card hand with 2 castable cantrips or 1 cantrip and 2-4 land is almost always a keeper since it will be better than your average 6 no matter what.
    1. If I take away the worst card in my 7-card hand, is the remaining 6 better than an average 6? (you can apply this to 6, 5, or even 4 as well). Card value for this excercise should be determined in the context of the hand - i.e. if you have only green and blue mana, no fixers, and a silverblade paladin in your starting hand he is most likely going to be a dead card in the context of this hand for at least the first 4 turns. He would be the worst card in most cases. If you have a starting hand of 4+ lands, take away the least useful land and start there. Also take matchup into consideration if you know what you're up against. A somewhat common scenario is to have auras but no creatures - auras with no bodies to attach to are dead cards in a starting hand. Unless you have tremendous card advantage in the hand due to abundant growths and your opponent mulliganing, you should never keep a starting hand with no creatures! After making this assessment if the answer is "an average 6 is better than the best 6 in this hand", you should mulligan. If the best 6 in this hand are equal to or better than an average 6 card draw, you should keep. If you're on the ropes about it, move on to number five:
    1. What is the skill level of your opponent? This one is tough but if you're playing in your local scene chances are you know a lot of the people you're playing against. At competitive REL where you don't know most of your opponents, you can do a couple of things to assess your opponent's experience level. Strike up friendly conversation about magic in general, how they've been doing in the tournament, what matchups they've had trouble with, etc... Do this without giving any information about your deck and see if they freely give information about theirs. People who freely give information about their deck, no matter if its useful, usually have less competitive level experience. Also when you're on the play, move semi-slowly to see if your opponent decides to mulligan/keep before you do. The person on the play is obligated to decide first but inexperienced players will jump the gun and make a decision before you, sometimes even sharing information about their poor hand (o darn, one lander!). The less experienced the player, the more likely you can keep a borderline hand and end up okay. These players are less common in the later rounds of a tourney if you're doing well. This shouldn't be one of your main determining factors, only use this if your hand is borderline playable or this can easily backfire. No matter how inexperienced your opponent seems (little kid with no sleeves), never keep a poor hand.
    1. Never look at the next few cards after you mulligan. I see a lot of people do this to see if they would have "got there" but you can only make a decision based on the information you have available! Doing this can cause you to second guess yourself in the future and become a worse player, stick by your decisions with the information available and move on. You're playing a game of controllable variables and uncontrollable variables. Only worry about the controllable ones, let the uncontrollable ones take care of themselves.


    Matchups:
    I will accept write-ups for specific match-ups if anyone is interested in writing it.


    The Bonerfleximus guide to sideboards. Gatecrash.
    Sure thing, this is generally how I sideboard:

    vs All Reanimator / Combo:

    -2 Gift of Orzhova
    +2 Ajani, Caller of the pride

    the goal is to kill them before they can get Vault / Hoof online

    vs any Aggro:

    On the draw versus all aggro, or on the play versus Naya blitz:
    -4 Invisible stalker (replace 2 fencing ace if they run hard removal)
    -2 Simic Charm
    +2 Loxodon Smiter
    +2 Feeling of Dread
    +1 Gift of Orzhova
    +1 Strangleroot Geist

    Invisible stalker is terrible on defense, so we add Strangleroot and Smiter. Replace Simic Charm with Feeling of Dread. Naya blitz gets this sideboard on the play because they are more consistently fast than us.

    On the play versus non-naya blitz aggro (Zombies, Aristocrats, Experiment Jund, Naya Humans (midrange with huntmaster/resto), etc..):

    -2 Simic Charm
    -1 Invisible Stalker (or Fencing ace if they run hard removal)
    +2 Feeling of Dread
    +1 Gift of Orzhova

    Vs Jund Midrange:

    -2 Fencing Ace
    -1 Silverblade Paladin
    -2 Gift of Orzhova
    +2 Sigarda
    +2 Negate
    +1 Ajani, Caller of the Pride

    In this matchup you just want to rely on the fact that they are slow and you have all day to set up an inevitable death for them. Play around Liliana, Bonfire and the occasional sideboard edict effect. You're not in a hurry here so it's okay to slow your curve if you have a geist and they've ramped to being able to hardcast bonfire for 2 before you can enchant him. If you have a free win hand, just go for the kill.


    Vs UWR or UW midrange (not control):

    -2 Fencing Ace
    -2 Gift of Orzhova
    -2 Selesnya Charm
    +2 Negate
    +1 Ajani, Caller of the Pride
    +1 Nevermore
    +2 Strangleroot Geist

    This is the most fun matchup for me because it involves a lot of thinking. You can wrecked here if you don't have experience with it, but if both players are equally experienced/skilled then bant auras is heavily favored.

    There's two ways to play this matchup. The first way is if you don't have experience and feel that your opponent does, the best to do here is just go balls to the wall and try and kill them as fast as possible. Don't play around anything unless its blatantly obvious, such as they shock themselves for a 4th land then pass the turn (resto angel). This way of playing will still win slightly more than 50% of the time.

    The second way to play it is for those that are more experienced with the matchup. Only commit enough pressure to the board to ensure that you're winning the race if things keep going at their current pace. Our deck is slightly more explosive than theirs, but not by much, so they have to assume you can go off on them at any time and will usually not risk holding back too many trumps. If you overcommit though, they can get card advantage from a verdict. The only trump they have that can be more explosive than ours is a harvest pyre on a reckoner. If they have a reckoner on board, try to either force a trade, turn up the heat, or leave mana for simic charm / negate open.

    Versus most other midrange (Naya, Junk, Zegana Bant):

    These vary, but they're pretty easy matchups for our mainboard so just be careful not to oversideboard or overreact to their strategy if you happen to lose game 1 to bad luck.

    Versus control (Esper, Bant, UWR, BWR):

    -2 Fencing Ace
    -2 Silverblade Paladin
    -1 Abundant Growth
    -2 Gift of Orzhova
    +3 Strangleroot Geist
    +2 Ajani, Caller of the Pride
    +1 Nevermore
    +2 Negate

    This matchup is similar to UWR Midrange, either go for the kill as fast as possible or try to play the game with them. If you have a slow hand, play conservative. Thankfully they put very little pressure on us early. If you have a fast hand that can potentially curve into a turn 4/5 kill, don't play conservative and just go for the kill. The longer the game goes the harder it is to win. Even if you can only get them to 5 life or less and they 5-for-1 you with a supreme verdict, go for it. We still have the ability to get those last 5 points of life, and at that point it's a lot easier to read what they have in their hand because they can no longer use their life total as a resource so they have to be a lot more careful (like verdicting a lone pilgrim because they're afraid of enchantments). If you have rancor in hand, try and use that to your advantage to get a free swing in before unloading everything. They usually want to get better than a 1-for-1 so they might let you get a free attack with a stalker/geist in before they wrath. This can be risky because if they have two wraths in hand or a snapcaster then you're gonna be behind.

    This is not an easy matchup and you have to lose a lot of games before you can start reaping percentage points. Once you have a lot of these under your belt, you can hover around 50% against a competitive field.


    This is the old Match-ups primer, archived. Refer to the Bonerfleximus guide for more specific and up-to-date advice.
    Against Aggro:
    It can be tough to win against aggro. Our best goldfish is up to a turn faster than them but we are not as consistent. Our goldfish against RDW is often a turn or two slower than usual because they're able to snipe out dorks and Silverblade Paladin. They on the other hand are as fast and as consistent as ever. Your best bet is to take advantage of the fact that they deal with creatures by dealing direct damage. Cast a Selesnya Charm as a Charm Knight at the end of their turn (preferably after they've tapped out to play their own creature). Then on your turn use auras to pump the Charm Knight up out of searing spear range. If you can get a Charm Knight up to 6 toughness you're probably going to win. Strangleroot Geist can usually be counted on for a 2 for 1 exchange.

    Against Midrange:

    A generally favorable matchup for us. There's a good chance that we'll get an uninterrupted goldfish against them and they're going to have to be tuned to face us if they hope to have a chance. Liliana of the Veil, Mizzium Mortars, Bonfire of the Damned and Devour Flesh have all gained in popularity. The G/W midrange decks have been playing Paraselene and Ray of Revelation to attack out auras directly. Your best bet against these guys is to be fast in game 1. In game two you might want to slow-roll a little bit - for example make sure you cast a Strangleroot Geist to protect your Geist of Saint Traft from edict effects. It might slow you down a turn but you can usually accept that against midrange.

    Against Combo:

    A good matchup for us. When two combo decks run into each other the faster combo usually wins. We're the fast combo. Post-board you can expect to see some kind of disruption so be wary of that.

    Against Control:
    This hasn't been much of a problem lately due to the relative lack of control decks in standard but they seem to be on the upswing. Your best bet is to play fast. If they don't draw a Supreme Verdict (or a Terminus) they might not be able to do anything meaningful against you. It might be worth running Rootborn Defenses and slow-rolling the first Supreme Verdict.


    Other Decklists:


    Unfortunately the deck is not easy to pilot. Mulliganning properly is difficult and we haven't had a lot of pilots. Aside from GP Atlantic City where we got some attention for once we haven't had much presence in tournaments. In the first GP after Gatecrash - for example - we only had 5 total entrants. This deck is a newer archetype that has been slow to gain converts. Don't ask me to explain why. Don't make the mistake of confusing low turnout for lack of power. This deck has more GP wins this season than Jund Midrange. I like to believe that if we had 10 times as many people playing it we'd be a factor in every major tournament but I can't prove it myself. If I were a high-level player then perhaps I could back up my beliefs with results.


    Archived version of the original OP


    BANT ENCHANT PRIMER



    What is Bant Enchant?
    There are three key functions of this archetype:
    • Uses Ethereal Armor with other enchantments to go over the top of your opponent
    • Hedge against the risk of a 2-for-1 by using hexproof bodies and elvish visionary
    • Use enchantments/creatures that improve consistency and velocity through mana fixing/cantrips
    What archetype does Bant Enchant fall under?

    It’s possible to build Bant Enchant in many different ways - tempo, agro, control, or midrange have all been explored in this thread. All versions of Bant Enchant create board states that are difficult for your opponent to interact with and have the potential for turn 4 blowout wins. This primer primarily focuses on Agro because in testing it makes best use of the archetype’s strength – putting pressure on your opponent with very few ways for them to disrupt with your gameplan.


    Current Deck (As of 12/6):

    Illinest's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    Land (23)
    2x Cavern of Souls
    5x Forest
    3x Glacial Fortress
    4x Hallowed Fountain
    2x Hinterland Harbor
    1x Moorland Haunt
    2x Sunpetal Grove
    4x Temple Garden

    Instant (2)
    2x Feeling of Dread

    Creature (19)
    4x Avacyn's Pilgrim
    3x Elvish Visionary
    4x Geist of Saint Traft
    3x Invisible Stalker
    3x Loxodon Smiter
    2x Silverblade Paladin

    Enchantment (16)
    4x Abundant Growth
    2x Detention Sphere
    4x Ethereal Armor
    2x Oblivion Ring
    4x Rancor



    Current deck card evaluation


    Creatures:
    Avacyn’s Pilgrim – Enables you to play a three-drop on turn two. Fixes mana for Silverblade, can be rancor’d or used as moorland fodder later in the game.
    Elvish Visionary – Perfect non-hexproof creature for this deck. The card draw prevents you from being two-for-one’d. When rancored, can trade up with Thragtusk or put pressure on control decks to waste a board wipe at the cost of zero cards. This is all in addition to the known benefits of cantrips.
    Geist of Saint Traft – The hexproof beater of choice. Pair with silverblade or cast ethereal armor to give first/double strike. The ideal turn two play off of pilgrim.
    Invisible Stalker – Excellent target for ethereal armor/rancor. Can’t be interacted with save for board wipes and edicts. Limited to three copies because you rarely want to see more than one per game and we have enough cantrips that three is enough.
    Loxodon Smiter – Can’t be countered, U/W/(x) midrange decks are fairly popular right now. The discard is relevant as well because opponents think twice about siding in Liliana against you with this card along with your dorks/pilgrims. Great body against agro, dodges several popular removal spells (Ultimate Price / Searing Spear / Pillar) and can’t be killed by resto angel.
    Silverblade Paladin – Effectively doubles the strength of your auras and puts immense pressure on the opponent when paired with a hexproof threat. He's somewhat tricky to use correctly depending on the matchup, with similar implications of use to Ethereal Armor (see below). If you're pairing with an attacking geist, be wary of instant speed removal getting your geist killed. Against control decks, its best to hold this card as a finisher. In some cases, also consider pairing with the Geist's angel to deal 8 damage in the air.


    Instants
    Feeling of Dread – Usually used by control decks to stall into the late game, this card does double work in our deck. Cast in response to your opponent declaring combat to tap down their two biggest threats, keeping you safe and allowing you to swing against less blockers next turn.

    Enchantments
    Abundant Growth – Mana fixes, cantrips, and adds an enchantment to the board for Ethereal armor. This is the perfect utility enchantment for this deck.
    Detention Sphere / Oblivion Ring – Removal and an enchantment in the same package. Current deck has a 2/2 split to deal with opposing detention spheres and to help with the occasions where blue mana isn't available.
    Ethereal Armor – The core of the deck. Learning to use this card properly is one the trickiest things about playing this deck. Knowing when to use it or hold it and when it’s appropriate for offense or defense is all about playing the deck and learning the matchups. Some common scenarios to look for:
    • Against control, you’ll often hold this card for a final strike or to add precisely enough damage to shorten their clock to X turns.
    • Against agro, you might use it defensively to create a wall while poking away at them a few points at a time with a stalker.
    • Against decks whose primary removal is damage-based (RDW / Jund) you can use it to put your creatures out of sweeper/burn range.
    Rancor – Gives the deck recurring reach and extra damage. Acts very similar to a grave crawler for this deck (2 damage for 1 mana, recastable as long as you have any creature in play.) Favorite targets are Visionary, Stalker and Moorland Haunt tokens.

    Lands:
    Moorland Haunt – Another source of card advantage for this deck, gives you evasive bodies that can be used to chump or to attach a rancor to for long and grindy games.
    Cavern of Souls – Helps us against counter-heavy decks. The counter-meta is softening up a bit but will likely never completely disappear.

    Card Options (UNDER CONSTRUCTION)

    Cantrips:

    • Abundant Growth - Draws a card, fixes mana, and synergizes extremely well with Ethereal Armor
    • Inaction Injunction - Removes a single creature from blocking your Geist and attacking the following turn, while not costing a card
    • Elvish Visionary - Cantrips, acts as a body to attach Rancors to or pump with Ajani, costs zero cards but often requires opponent to play one card to remove.
    • Think Twice - Cycles through two cards, pumps Quirion Dryad twice
    • Curiosity - Draws more cards on Invisible stalker

    Tempo/Removal:

    • Feeling of Dread - Removes two creatures from two combats (either offensive or defensive) and pumps Quirion dryad twice
    • Inaction Injunction - Removes a single creature from two combats (both offensive and defensive) and doesn't cost a card
    • Detention Sphere - Potentially an X for 1 removal card, adds to the number of enchantments on board to synergize with ethereal armor
    • Oblivion Ring - Same as D-sphere, can also hit D-sphere against U/W/x
    • Supreme Verdict - This deck rarely commits more than one creature to the board. Can be used to gain card/tempo advantage any time an opponent overcommits
    • Jace, Architect of Thought - Slows down agro, acts as card advantage, can force opponent to overcommitting into a board wipe
    • Bonds of Faith - Enhances Invisible stalker, stops thragtusk and other creatures, acts as another enchantment for the board
    • Arrest - Same deal as bonds of faith, can also stop other troublesome creatures such as Olivia, Niv Mizzix
    • Azorius Charm - Time-walk the opponent, allows you to swing and gain life rather than holding back a blocker, can be used to draw a card.
    • Selesnya Charm - Removal against large threats, can become a threat to recover from a board wipe, can save geist or give trample to a pumped up big-guy.

    Beats:

    • Quirion Dryad - Easy to cast threat that keeps getting bigger, lethal if not dealt with.
    • Geist of Saint Traft - We all know who this guy is
    • Invisible Stalker - Zero-interaction beater that can get huge with the right supporting cards
    • Sigarda, Host of Herons - The pinnacle of creature types we want to play, high mana cost makes her slow
    • Lone Revenant - Same deal as Sigarda, card advantage is rarely relevant unless accompanies by rancor
    • Restoration Angel - Cantrips off Visionary, evasive that can dodge sorcery speed removal for a turn, recovers from board wipe, removes GoST from combat after attack declared, great defensive creature
    • Thragtusk - This guy...

    Support for your beats:
    • Rancor - Amazing 1-drop, can't get 2-for-1 if your creature is killed. Can break through chump blockers, synergizes with ethereal armor.
    • Ethereal Armor - Having just one in play is decent, but with 14 enchantments this card scales extremely well for 1 mana. Cast on an invisble stalker to put him out of bonfire/electrickery range, or cast on Geist to protect him. Having more than one of these out at a time gets crazy.
    • Negate - Protection from most board wipes, enchantment removal, edict effects, or cards that you just really don't like.
    • Ajani, Caller of the Pride - Amazing finisher. They see your board and think they have 1-2 more turns to live, drop Ajani and win. Can also be used to build board if you have a lot of tempo cards to protect him. If they decide to swing at Ajani you minimally gained 5 life and got a +1 counter for 3 mana.
    • Spectral Flight - Evasion, resilience, leaves you open to being 2-for-1
    • Divine Favor - Slows Agro, puts GoST / Stalker out of range of a lot of creatures power, gains life

    Sideboard Options (Under construction)


    Assessing your starting hand (Mulliganing)


    Learning how to mulligan with this deck or any deck comes with grinding and practice. As you play the deck more, you'll be able to see how each hand is likely to play out. This is only a rough outline of the thought process that goes into mulliganing with this deck, your experience with the deck and level of discipline will ultimately be the deciding factors!

    Two main things when assessing the starting hand:
    • Assuming you draw no extra threats, when is the earliest you can put pressure on your opponent? Turn 3 is ideal, turn 4 is acceptable in most cases. Note that an invisible stalker with no enchantments does not count as "pressure"
    • Assuming you draw only 1 colorless mana source by turn 3, how may dead cards do you have?

    If the answer to the above two questions are "Pressure on turn 3-4 and 2 or less dead cards", the hand is a keeper. If it's not, go through the below steps in order:
    1. Are you on the play or on the draw? If you're on the draw and you can put pressure on your opponent turns 3-4 you should usually keep the hand. The pressure is more important on the draw because your opponent is one step ahead of you and you get to draw an extra card. If you're on the play the dead cards aspect is important, but turn 3-4 pressure on the play will still usually be a keeper.
    2. What kind of deck is my opponent playing? Can I afford a slow hand?
    3. How many cantrips do I have and how many cards will I have drawn into by turn 3? A 7 card hand with 2 castable cantrips or 1 cantrip and 2-4 land is almost always a keeper since it will be better than your average 6 no matter what.
    4. If I take away the worst card in my 7-card hand, is the remaining 6 better than an average 6? (you can apply this to 6, 5, or even 4 as well). Card value for this excercise should be determined in the context of the hand - i.e. if you have only green and blue mana, no fixers, and a silverblade paladin in your starting hand he is most likely going to be a dead card in the context of this hand for at least the first 4 turns. He would be the worst card in most cases. If you have a starting hand of 4+ lands, take away the least useful land and start there. Also take matchup into consideration if you know what you're up against. A somewhat common scenario is to have auras but no creatures - auras with no bodies to attach to are dead cards in a starting hand. Unless you have tremendous card advantage in the hand due to abundant growths and your opponent mulliganing, you should never keep a starting hand with no creatures! After making this assessment if the answer is "an average 6 is better than the best 6 in this hand", you should mulligan. If the best 6 in this hand are equal to or better than an average 6 card draw, you should keep. If you're on the ropes about it, move on to number five:
    5. What is the skill level of your opponent? This one is tough but if you're playing in your local scene chances are you know a lot of the people you're playing against. At competitive REL where you don't know most of your opponents, you can do a couple of things to assess your opponent's experience level. Strike up friendly conversation about magic in general, how they've been doing in the tournament, what matchups they've had trouble with, etc... Do this without giving any information about your deck and see if they freely give information about theirs. People who freely give information about their deck, no matter if its useful, usually have less competitive level experience. Also when you're on the play, move semi-slowly to see if your opponent decides to mulligan/keep before you do. The person on the play is obligated to decide first but inexperienced players will jump the gun and make a decision before you, sometimes even sharing information about their poor hand (o darn, one lander!). The less experienced the player, the more likely you can keep a borderline hand and end up okay. These players are less common in the later rounds of a tourney if you're doing well. This shouldn't be one of your main determining factors, only use this if your hand is borderline playable or this can easily backfire. No matter how inexperienced your opponent seems (little kid with no sleeves), never keep a poor hand.
    6. Never look at the next few cards after you mulligan. I see a lot of people do this to see if they would have "got there" but you can only make a decision based on the information you have available! Doing this can cause you to second guess yourself in the future and become a worse player, stick by your decisions with the information available and move on. You're playing a game of controllable variables and uncontrollable variables. Only worry about the controllable ones, let the uncontrollable ones take care of themselves.

    Sideboarding (UNDER CONSTRUCTION)


    Matchups (UNDER CONSTRUCTION)

    Last edited by Illinest: 7/30/2013 12:35:39 AM
  • #4
    Really do like the synergy, and props on the originality. I have to ask though, in the spirit of honesty and helping you improve your deck, just how consistent has your playtesting been with only 20 lands? I honestly cannot help but be very skeptical, this deck sort of models Delver with 12-16 creatures, the extremely low land count, but does *not* have the cantripping/turbo draw power to smooth out early draws.

    If anything the only suggestion I'd make is +4x Thought Scour, in conjunction with your Abundant Growth perhaps, maybe another land or two to play it safe. I'm a HUGE advocate for Abundant Growth by the way, and if you think 4 cantrips is good enough I'll go with that. I can't help but still feel this list is really hurting for another 4 though.
    Standard: Team GWB RAMP
    http://forums.mtgsalvation.com/showpost.php?p=9157664&postcount=1
    South Carolina State Champion: 2012

    Yo dawg Frites Player, we herd you liked getting 1 for 3'd by Angel of Serenity, so we put some Angels in your Angel (Avacyn) so you can get chained while you get exiled. ANGELCEPTION.
  • #5
    Quote from Cassial
    Really do like the synergy, and props on the originality. I have to ask though, in the spirit of honesty and helping you improve your deck, just how consistent has your playtesting been with only 20 lands? I honestly cannot help but be very skeptical, this deck sort of models Delver with 12-16 creatures, the extremely low land count, but does *not* have the cantripping/turbo draw power to smooth out early draws.

    If anything the only suggestion I'd make is +4x Thought Scour, in conjunction with your Abundant Growth perhaps, maybe another land or two to play it safe. I'm a HUGE advocate for Abundant Growth by the way, and if you think 4 cantrips is good enough I'll go with that. I can't help but still feel this list is really hurting for another 4 though.


    he has 10 cantrips.

    and I like the list I would make some changes but its forsure one of the most unique bant lists post RTR yet.
    My blog

    3rd at Wisconsin States 2012
    Standard:
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Next Lvl ZombiesB//
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    JUND Whedon
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Thanks to DNC @ Heroes of the Plane Studios for the Sig.
  • #6
    Quote from Cassial
    Really do like the synergy, and props on the originality. I have to ask though, in the spirit of honesty and helping you improve your deck, just how consistent has your playtesting been with only 20 lands? I honestly cannot help but be very skeptical, this deck sort of models Delver with 12-16 creatures, the extremely low land count, but does *not* have the cantripping/turbo draw power to smooth out early draws.

    If anything the only suggestion I'd make is +4x Thought Scour, in conjunction with your Abundant Growth perhaps, maybe another land or two to play it safe. I'm a HUGE advocate for Abundant Growth by the way, and if you think 4 cantrips is good enough I'll go with that. I can't help but still feel this list is really hurting for another 4 though.


    Hi there, thanks for the input and compliments. As stated there are more cantrips in the form of Inaction Injunction and Think Twice. I do however have consistency issues. I did a few more hours testing yesterday against a post-rtr Jund Zombies list, as well as an American Control list and made some changes to the list based on my testing which I've listed below.

    I like thought scour but I'm not a fan of cantrips purely for the sake of cantrips unless I'm running Snapcaster/Runechanter's pike. There is some synergy with Azorius Charm(which is in the new list). I'd rather let the opponent play the threat I know than something new though.

    Here's the new list with explanations of the changes I made:

    Bonerfleximus's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    Land (22)
    3x Forest
    4x Glacial Fortress
    4x Hallowed Fountain
    3x Island
    4x Sunpetal Grove
    4x Temple Garden

    Instant (6)
    3x Feeling of Dread
    2x Azorius Charm
    1x Divine Deflection

    Sorcery (3)
    3x Inaction Injunction

    Enchantment (14)
    4x Abundant Growth
    2x Detention Sphere
    4x Ethereal Armor
    4x Rancor

    Creature (13)
    4x Geist of Saint Traft
    4x Invisible Stalker
    3x Quirion Dryad
    1x Sigarda, Host of Herons
    1x Lone Revenant

    Planeswalker (2)
    2x Ajani, Caller of the Pride



    New Additions:


    • Land revision (22 land) - I was having trouble with land, bumping the land count to 22 and dropping the 1 Moorland Haunt made the deck a lot more consistent. I was no longer torn between casting a cantrip or a threat. This also let me splash a couple of bombs (Sigarda/Lone Revenant). My previous land count was operating off of Xerox theory - with the ability to draw 10 extra cards it should have counted as 5 additional land. I think that theory applies less so when half my cantrips are 2 mana cantrips.
    • Azorius Charm - This card overperformed in the Jund Zombies matchup. I had noticed there were several occassions where I could swing for 10+ damage, but I'd be open to lethal on the crackback. I used the lifelink portion of this charm to gain 10 life and put them on the defensive. I also had a few occasions where my Geist was rancor'd and I'd put the blocker on top of their library to trample through for full damage.
    • Divine Deflection - Similar dynamic as Azorius Charm, I would either use it to prevent an alpha strike for the win or 2-for-1 and kill a blocker/planeswalker with the reflected damage. Against the control matchup I used this when he cast his finisher (Devil's play) for the win. This card was a blowout.
    • Sigarda - Upping the lands to 22 makes her usable, and she's probably the most effective threat you can play in a deck like this. I honestly haven't had a chance to run her yet in live games, so I'll have to report back.
    • Lone Revenant - Same deal here - with the right support this guy can let you search for finishers / answers and since I only run 13 threats there's no reason to drop more than one at a time.


    Cards Removed:

    • Negate - This may go back in depending on how the meta shapes up, but for now I'm fine with having 3-of in the sideboard against control matchups. There's so few ways to interact with this deck that unless you're playing against a deck with 4+ board wipes you shouldn't have too many issues.
    • Think Twice - It was cute to be able to cantrip twice and pump dryad twice, but 2-3 mana was just too expensive for this type of deck. Replaced with azorius charm to be able to have the same effect if absolutely necessary, but with other great utility.
    • Moorland Haunt - Not enough creatures in the deck for this to matter. Unless I have 3+ hexproof threats in hand I'm not going to drop more than one at a time and the opponent has very few ways to interact with my creatures.
    Last edited by Bonerfleximus: 9/27/2012 4:17:28 PM
  • #7
    Quote from Nahadoth
    he has 10 cantrips.

    and I like the list I would make some changes but its forsure one of the most unique bant lists post RTR yet.


    Thanks, what changes would you make?
  • #8
    I'd go up to 21 lands and add something better than [CARD]Lone Revenant
    [/CARD] I really like Dungeon Geists or another Sigarda, Host of Herons maybe run Elvish Visionarys over Quirion Dryad I really like them + they are a body to enchant and another cantrip even though Quirion Dryad can get big you don't get anything from her when she enters and you need to cast 2 other non green spells for her to be out of Pillar of Flame range I think she is awesome but chances are she will be taken out asap so why not get a card instead?

    I'll look more into the list and give you a more detailed version of how i'd change it later.
    My blog

    3rd at Wisconsin States 2012
    Standard:
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Next Lvl ZombiesB//
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    JUND Whedon
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Thanks to DNC @ Heroes of the Plane Studios for the Sig.
  • #9
    Quote from Nahadoth
    I'd go up to 21 lands and add something better than [CARD]Lone Revenant
    [/CARD] I really like Dungeon Geists or another Sigarda, Host of Herons maybe run Elvish Visionarys over Quirion Dryad I really like them + they are a body to enchant and another cantrip even though Quirion Dryad can get big you don't get anything from her when she enters and you need to cast 2 other non green spells for her to be out of Pillar of Flame range I think she is awesome but chances are she will be taken out asap so why not get a card instead?

    I'll look more into the list and give you a more detailed version of how i'd change it later.


    Ya I'm running 1 each of the Lone Revenant and Sigarda for testing purposes, likely I'll just settle on two-of one of them.

    I like the proposal of Elvish Visionary. My initial build was split between visionary and Judge's familiar as an evasive body that puts board wipes one turn further away. I might go back to visionaries because they're a free body that lets you cycle through more of your deck, and there's almost no risk to casting rancor on them.
  • #10
    Dalems's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    Land (22)
    5x Forest
    4x Hinterland Harbor
    4x Temple Garden
    3x Island
    3x Hallowed Fountain
    3x Sunpetal Grove

    Spells
    4x Azorius Charm
    4x Farseek
    4x Trackers Instincts
    2x Forbidden Alchemy

    Enchantment (18)
    4x Abundant Growth
    2x Detention Sphere
    4x Ethereal Armor
    4x Rancor
    4x Mana Bloom

    Creature (10)
    4x Geist of Saint Traft
    4x Invisible Stalker
    1x Sigarda, Host of Herons
    1x Lone Revenant



    My take on the deck using turn 2 ramp, more enchantments, Tracker's instincts/Forbidden Alchemy to find threats (Better cantrip). I moved around the manabase to support the green ramp aspect more. Goldfish is turn 4 (26/24 Invisible Stalker with Lifelink. Seems like that would hurt)
    Currently testing/playing

    GR Ramp Happy Valakut GR
  • #11
    Quote from Dalems
    Bonerfleximus's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    Land (22)
    5x Forest
    4x Hinterland Harbor
    4x Temple Garden
    3x Island
    3x Hallowed Fountain
    3x Sunpetal Grove

    Spells
    4x Azorius Charm
    4x Farseek
    4x Trackers Instincts
    2x Forbidden Alchemy

    Enchantment (18)
    4x Abundant Growth
    2x Detention Sphere
    4x Ethereal Armor
    4x Rancor
    4x Mana Bloom

    Creature (10)
    4x Geist of Saint Traft
    4x Invisible Stalker
    1x Sigarda, Host of Herons
    1x Lone Revenant



    My take on the deck using turn 2 ramp, more enchantments, Tracker's instincts/Forbidden Alchemy to find threats (Better cantrip). I moved around the manabase to support the green ramp aspect more. Goldfish is turn 4 (26/24 Invisible Stalker with Lifelink. Seems like that would hurt)


    Hi, thanks for your input. I'm trying to critique without sounding harsh but have you tested this deck against competitive players?

    I don't quite see the point of Mana bloom - it's turn-2 ramp at best you can have 4 mana on turn 3. Not sure what that does for you other than add an enchantment to your board. Perhaps if you had more spells that were castable on the opponent's turn it might be splashable since you can use it once each turn but you only have 6.

    Tracker's instinct is interesting but with only 10 creatures you're gonna be biffing a lot when you cast it, putting yourself at an extreme disadvantage because you just lost 2 mana and a card without advancing at all. I see it as more for creature-dense decks.

    Also I see nothing in here to deal with opposing enemy threats besides Azorius Charm and D-Sphere. The deck has the potential to blow someone out with multiple enchantments, stalker, ethereal armor, in playtesting this happens very rarely.

    To make it consistent you have to be able to stay alive and cycle through your cards in an efficient manner that still affects the board/hand. This is why I use abundant growth and Inaction Injunction as cantrips and I'm also considering putting elvish visionaries in there over the Dryad.

    In the early RtR meta I think your list will have a lot of problems with all the fast agro decks that vomiting up triple 2/2s or swinging with a Silverblade paired with a Sublime for 10 on turn 3.
  • #12
    I think enchantments are awesome and all but Ray of revelation and Paraselene wrecks them.
    JOIN THE MOTION! REVIVE EXTENDED FORMAT PLAY!


    Current Decks

    Standard
    RDW R

    Extended
    ELDRAZIWOLFRUN RG
    DEMONIC LANDFALL BG
    GOBLINS RU
    ELVESG

    Modern
    Storm UR
    Land Destruction RB
    Turbo Smog WR

  • #13
    Quote from Yorutenchi
    I think enchantments are awesome and all but Ray of revelation and Paraselene wrecks them.


    If my deck becomes a tier 1 deck, I'll start worrying about how to deal with those cards. In the RtR meta that I see forming, I don't think I'll have to worry about that.
  • #14
    Quote from Bonerfleximus
    If my deck becomes a tier 1 deck, I'll start worrying about how to deal with those cards. In the RtR meta that I see forming, I don't think I'll have to worry about that.


    True. If it becomes a threat then people wil side in those cards. But as an unexpected sort of rogue deck it can work. It really depends on how good G/W will be as either tokens,humans,aggro,lifegain.
    JOIN THE MOTION! REVIVE EXTENDED FORMAT PLAY!


    Current Decks

    Standard
    RDW R

    Extended
    ELDRAZIWOLFRUN RG
    DEMONIC LANDFALL BG
    GOBLINS RU
    ELVESG

    Modern
    Storm UR
    Land Destruction RB
    Turbo Smog WR

  • #15
    Quote from Yorutenchi
    True. If it becomes a threat then people wil side in those cards. But as an unexpected sort of rogue deck it can work. It really depends on how good G/W will be as either tokens,humans,aggro,lifegain.


    I think Ray of Revelation will definitely see some sideboard play because of O-ring, Detention Sphere and Rest in Peace.
  • #16
    Quote from Bonerfleximus
    I think Ray of Revelation will definitely see some sideboard play because of O-ring, Detention Sphere and Rest in Peace.


    but how many decks can use it. For one this deck actually. Bant looks good (probably better than G/w or u/w) so it would have full acess to the awesome answers to threats that would come up in mirror.
    JOIN THE MOTION! REVIVE EXTENDED FORMAT PLAY!


    Current Decks

    Standard
    RDW R

    Extended
    ELDRAZIWOLFRUN RG
    DEMONIC LANDFALL BG
    GOBLINS RU
    ELVESG

    Modern
    Storm UR
    Land Destruction RB
    Turbo Smog WR

  • #17
    Quote from Yorutenchi
    but how many decks can use it. For one this deck actually. Bant looks good (probably better than G/w or u/w) so it would have full acess to the awesome answers to threats that would come up in mirror.


    All I'm saying is that it will probably be in some sideboards so as you suggested I may want to consider this card as a threat. I have 3 negates in my sideboard, but Syncopate or Dissipate might be a better answer for the exile.
  • #18
    It just seems to be too all over the place...
    On jace
    By WeNeedControl
    i tested jace tonight and its one of the worst planeswalkers. it never really does anything except make u lose. i suggest u sell yours for 17 each like i did.

    then again on valakut
    ROFL what? Valakut? The best card in standard is Jace the mind Sculptor

    hm.... interesting.
    Haters gonna hate on my jank decks.
  • #19
    Quote from antiernie13
    It just seems to be too all over the place...


    It's a tempo deck similar to delver if that simplifies it for you.


    The differences between this and delver:


    • It runs less threats because it's less vulnerable to removal
    • It runs more pumps because it has less threats
    • The damage is less sustained and more of a burst using finishers. Example being - you draw into an ethereal armor with 2-3 enchantments on the board and increase your damage output by +4 that turn. Or you drop Ajani and give flying/doublestrike to your pumped Stalker/GoST.
    • The rest of the cards take a different approach at the same goals - gain card advantage, disrupt your opponent's plays.
  • #20
    I did some more testing on Cockatrice last night, I beat BR zombies and lost to 5CC due to some misplays. I think 2x sigarda and 3x visionaries are definitely the way to go for the remaining creature spots. Here's my most current list:

    Bonerfleximus's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    Land (22)
    3x Forest
    3x Glacial Fortress
    4x Hallowed Fountain
    2x Hinterland Harbor
    3x Island
    3x Sunpetal Grove
    4x Temple Garden

    Instant (6)
    2x Azorius Charm
    1x Divine Deflection
    3x Feeling of Dread

    Enchantment (14)
    4x Abundant Growth
    2x Detention Sphere
    4x Ethereal Armor
    4x Rancor

    Creature (13)
    3x Elvish Visionary
    4x Geist of Saint Traft
    4x Invisible Stalker
    2x Sigarda, Host of Herons

    Sorcery (3)
    3x Inaction Injunction

    Planeswalker (2)
    2x Ajani, Caller of the Pride



    For those who doubt the deck, throw a copy together on cockatrice and play it out. Here's some key points to keep in mind:

    • Don't play more than one hexproof threat at a time unless you're 100% certain your opponent doesn't run board wipes.
    • Don't attach ethereal armor to Visionary unless you think your opponent's deck is light on removal, or you have no other options. It's not that bad of a play because visionary doesn't count as a 2-for-1 but just don't give them an option.
    • 80% of the time hold your Ajani's as a finisher. It's ok to drop early if you have the cards to protect him, but its more important to be able to get his -3 off when you need it and Abrupt Decay is a card.
    • Don't keep hands with less than 2 land and a threat, or 2 land and at least one cantrip/tempo card.
  • #21
    Not seeing it in here, but what are everyone's opinions on Spectral Flight as a 2-3of in the mainboard? In my testing of a variant of this deck, it's been an all-star on everyone except Sigarda.
    My Decks:

    Standard
    TBD

    Modern:
    :sympu::sympw: Gifts Tron
    :symw::symg: Death and Taxes
    blue mana Merfolk

    EDH:

    :sympw::sympu::sympb::sympr::sympg: The Five Suns (Five Praetor decks)
  • #22
    I posted one deck like that when all the RtR cards were spoiled, in Standard New Card Discussion, probably deleted already. I tested it for a couple days by that time, and the deck is just not enough... it folds vs Sweepers and vs Enchantment Hate, of course.
    If you want to test more, I'll post my list, take ideas from it if you want, and good luck! Smile

    Denegaar's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    4 Geist of Saint Traft
    4 Invisible Stalker
    2 Sigarda, Host of Herons

    4 Abundant Growth
    2 Arrest
    1 Bonds of Faith
    3 Detention Sphere
    4 Ethereal Armor
    1 Nevermore
    4 Pacifism
    2 Rancor
    3 Spectral Flight
    3 Sphere of Safety

    2 Forest
    3 Glacial Fortress
    4 Hallowed Fountain
    3 Hinterland Harbor
    2 Island
    2 Moorland Haunt
    1 Plains
    3 Sunpetal Grove
    3 Temple Garden

    2 Nevermore
    3 Rest in Peace
    3 Negate
    3 Sundering Growth
    3 Supreme Verdict
    1 Terminus

  • #23
    Arctic aven is a nice creature. We could use some life link.
  • #24
    Quote from Denegaar
    I posted one deck like that when all the RtR cards were spoiled, in Standard New Card Discussion, probably deleted already. I tested it for a couple days by that time, and the deck is just not enough... it folds vs Sweepers and vs Enchantment Hate, of course.
    If you want to test more, I'll post my list, take ideas from it if you want, and good luck! Smile

    Bonerfleximus's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    4 Geist of Saint Traft
    4 Invisible Stalker
    2 Sigarda, Host of Herons

    4 Abundant Growth
    2 Arrest
    1 Bonds of Faith
    3 Detention Sphere
    4 Ethereal Armor
    1 Nevermore
    4 Pacifism
    2 Rancor
    3 Spectral Flight
    3 Sphere of Safety

    2 Forest
    3 Glacial Fortress
    4 Hallowed Fountain
    3 Hinterland Harbor
    2 Island
    2 Moorland Haunt
    1 Plains
    3 Sunpetal Grove
    3 Temple Garden

    2 Nevermore
    3 Rest in Peace
    3 Negate
    3 Sundering Growth
    3 Supreme Verdict
    1 Terminus



    Interesting choices, I like how you go all-in on the enchantment synergies. I haven't run anything that enchantment heavy but I've found that without enough cantrips you can't consistently draw into your threats. By having 6 more cantrips in my list (potentially 8 more if you count the charm), I am able to draw into more threats. Its also important when playing against sweepers to not drop more than 1 threat at a time which I'm sure you know.

    Also, having Ajani as a finisher is huge. It's not difficult to do the first 5-8 points of damage with this deck, and your main vulnerability is to sorcery speed sweepers. Sweepers can't be used to react to you casting Ajani and -3 your geist/stalker for a finishing blow.

    I'm also not sold on the value of casting enchantments as creature removal (arrest / pacifism). Against zombies, they always have sac outlets to gain value from their creatures after you Pacify/Arrest them and against other decks you're playing 1 card to counter 1 card. With Inaction Injunction you detain a creature for 2 combats and lose zero cards. With feeling of dread you remove two creatures from 2 combats and lose 1 card. Overall I find that Feeling / Inaction are sufficient for creating openings for geist to swing or stalling until you can build up to critical mass.

    I'm also considering using Divine Reckoning as a removal - it's a wrath spell for 4 that lets each side choose one creature to keep. I think that weighs heavily in our favor almost every time, and it has flashback.

    Edit: I love bonds of faith. Never thought of that one and am going to try and think of a way to add it
    Last edited by Bonerfleximus: 10/2/2012 5:18:48 PM
  • #25
    Quote from bv310
    Not seeing it in here, but what are everyone's opinions on Spectral Flight as a 2-3of in the mainboard? In my testing of a variant of this deck, it's been an all-star on everyone except Sigarda.


    I haven't tested it in this deck, but I think it can work. The thing I like about rancor is the recursion effect. The primary risk of dropping enchantments on creatures is getting 2-for-1'd and Rancor on hexproof guys makes that close to impossible.

    I feel that ethereal armor is justifiable because of the blowout factor it can have on the game for only 1 mana and the synergy it has with abundant growth / rancor / ajani -3.

    Spectral Flight is definitely worth considering though since it puts stalker out of range of most cheap sweepers.
  • #27
    Quote from Albus Severus
    Arctic aven is a nice creature. We could use some life link.


    Azorius Charm fits that role
  • #28
    Quote from Denegaar
    I posted one deck like that when all the RtR cards were spoiled, in Standard New Card Discussion, probably deleted already. I tested it for a couple days by that time, and the deck is just not enough... it folds vs Sweepers and vs Enchantment Hate, of course.
    If you want to test more, I'll post my list, take ideas from it if you want, and good luck! Smile

    Nahadoth's DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    4 Geist of Saint Traft
    4 Invisible Stalker
    2 Sigarda, Host of Herons

    4 Abundant Growth
    2 Arrest
    1 Bonds of Faith
    3 Detention Sphere
    4 Ethereal Armor
    1 Nevermore
    4 Pacifism
    2 Rancor
    3 Spectral Flight
    3 Sphere of Safety

    2 Forest
    3 Glacial Fortress
    4 Hallowed Fountain
    3 Hinterland Harbor
    2 Island
    2 Moorland Haunt
    1 Plains
    3 Sunpetal Grove
    3 Temple Garden

    2 Nevermore
    3 Rest in Peace
    3 Negate
    3 Sundering Growth
    3 Supreme Verdict
    1 Terminus



    might as well max out on bonds of faith over pacifism
    My blog

    3rd at Wisconsin States 2012
    Standard:
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Next Lvl ZombiesB//
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    JUND Whedon
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Thanks to DNC @ Heroes of the Plane Studios for the Sig.
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