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  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    I like your sideboard strategy a lot better than mine. Mine has been (I post at the beginning of this page) to drop Search and Censors in Game 2/3. That just never really felt right. I like the looks of just cuts some of the numbers to make room instead.

    So far, 1 Pull From Tomorrow seems to be enough in the 75, so if you keep one main, I can see dropping the one sideboard. Or just leave it in the side and drop the one main to open up a slot.

    Jace's Defeat I am right on the fence on. When it works, it sure feels good but a lot of the time it is just OK. May bump up to 4 Negate instead or swap it for a Essence Scatter, which you can use as a pseudo spot removal.

    I haven't played that much with Baral, Chief of Compliance but when I do, he seems really strong. Has a big target on his back, which I like. Most of the time, I will spend a few turns fighting over him which just plays into our favor. If he sticks, 1 less to cast everything is a huge plus.

    Most of the games that I have lost, other than just not drawing the cards I need, have been because they counter my board wipe and it puts me so far behind I can't recover. That is one of the main reasons I like running 4 Harnessed Lightning, it takes the pressure off of forcing me to turn 4 Settle or turn 5 Fumigate to keep from dying. I can now keep the board clear as much as possible then do a board wipe later. Not being afraid to take some hits has been the biggest improvement to my game since I started playing Approach. Have always heard, 'Use your life total as a resource', finally starting to try and do that.

    One card I saw a lot of in Atlanta that worked really well against Temur was River's Rebuke. Not sure it fits nicely into our deck or not but was back breaking in Temur mirror matches.
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    @racerxen - nice. Mario suggested Hour of Revelation. It may help sure up the GPG matchup.

    Are you running the same list you posted on page 6? You mind posting your sideboard strategy for Temur and Red? Thanks
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    @MarioAugusto88 - nice work at the PPTQ. Hour sounds like an interesting card because you are right, everyone seems to be playing around Settle now. Quick question, when you bring in Vraska's Contempt, how often do you run into mana issues casting it? I like the looks of Esper but the mana base just seems pretty rough (that is the main reason I am on Jeskai, mana base is a lot smoother, IMO).

    A bunch of UWx Approach decks did well in Baltimore this weekend. Most interesting is U/W Approach Jorge Esquivel. Pretty standard except no Search for Azcanta main just one in the sideboard. Assuming he brings it in against control. As much as I like Search, it does kinda make sense, I usually board them out against Temur and Aggro and those are 75-80% of the meta right now.

    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    Last night at FNM, I was talking to some of the other guys there about which they liked better in my Approach deck, Fatal or Harness. It was a pretty even split. I like Jeskai because of Harness and the mana base. Currently trying the draw-go style decks and there is almost no way for me to turn on the Revolt part of Fatal, so imo, it is just not as strong.
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    @the_codaddy - I have been very impressed with Glyph Keeper. Forcing them to spend 2 removal on it just feels really good against most control decks. Then buy it back for 7 mana is pretty nuts. Against Temur, Glorybringer has been doing a lot of work for me also. But I am still trying to work out the correct 75 cards.
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    @Departure1993 - Both the newer Draw-Go style decks are almost identical. Red runs Harness and Black runs push. I like the Jeskai version because the mana base feels smoother the first 4-6 turns and usually I can sequence my lands so the 1 or 2 that do come in tapped, does not mean I can't cast what I need to. Whereas Esper, it feels like a lot of games, it is turn 4-5 before I have the mana I need. Plus I like Harness Lightning better than Fatal Push both are good just personal preference on my part. Either way, the early spot removal makes a very big difference.

    As far as sideboarding:

    Temur - 2 Options
    Option 1 In
    +2 Jace's Defeat
    +3-4 Negate
    +2 Gearhulk ?

    Option 1 out
    -2 Search (Really like the card but just not great in this matchup)
    -4 Censor (On the draw, this loses a lot of it's value as a counter)

    Or
    Some combination of these depends on how much you want to board in.
    -2 Search
    -1 Gideon
    -1 Pull
    -2 Disallow
    -1 Cast Out

    Option 2 In
    +2 Gearhulk
    +2 Glorybringer
    +2 Glyph Keeper
    +1 Locust God
    +2 Abrade

    Out
    -3 Supreme
    -2 Fumigate
    -2 Search
    -2 Approach
    -2 Censor

    Play with the numbers as needed.

    Option 1 out is pretty standard, but someone posted the second list of cards to board out and I have been liking the results. As far as bringing in, 6 extra counters should mean you can get your Approach home and the Gearhulks make everything easier as well as being another threat. But Option 2 means you don't care about Approach and are just going to beat them down with dudes. This has worked really well on game 2 after they have removed most of their removal. Depending on the game 1 and who I am playing I will side in dudes on Game 2 if I don't get there, I will swap back to the Approach plan. It puts them under a lot of pressure to make decisions while not knowing what I am playing.
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    Most of the time, everyone says cut 2 Search and 4 Censor to make room for stuff. But after watching Alex play Sunday, that is not what he did. So kinda in the same boat. Still working on a decent SB plan for the new Draw-Go style lists, either Jeskai or Esper because other than Fatal Push and Harness Lightning, they are almost the same mainboard.
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    At the Atlanta GP I went 5-3-1 with my Jeskai list, just missing day 2 by 2 points. The game 1 draw and g9 lose did me in. Over all the deck ran very well. Was really impressed with how smooth it played and never really felt like I was in an unfavorable matchup. Sometimes I just did not draw the cards I needed. Ended up playing 4 Glimmers, 3 Disallow and 5 board wipes (3 Settle, 2 Fumigate) main. Really liked the extra Glimmer, always seemed to have one when I needed it.

    R1 (1-1) Temur 0-0-1
    Game 1 - went very long, my opponent was playing slowly and we both played draw-go turns for a while after turn 10, about 30 minutes in, I finally found my Approach and ended it quickly after that.
    Game 2 ended quickly with him drawing a great hand.
    Game 3, he mulled to 5, looked up and saw there was less than 10 minutes left of the clock and started taking 2-3 minutes per turn to play. A judge came up and mentioned is speed of play but there was only a minutes left on the clock. I felt like I could have easily won that last game. The draw came back to bite me in the end.

    R2 (2-0) U/R Control 1-0-1
    G1 – fun game, we both countered a lot of each other’s stuff, finally I landed a Gideon and beat him down with it.
    G2 – I had more counters than he did and was able to bait a lot of counters early. When I cast my 2nd Approach, he only had 1 Negate left, which I countered.

    R3 (2-0) U/W Approach 2-0-1
    G1 – Pretty normal mirror match up, I landed an Approach on turn 7. That put him behind, he was never able to cast his because if it.
    G2 – I boarded in all my dudes. Turn 3 Gideon, Turn 4 Gideon, Turn 5 Glorybringer, Turn 6 Glyph Keeper, Turn 7 Gearhulk. He just could not deal with everything, pretty easy win.

    R4 (1-2) Sultai Energy 2-1-1
    G1 – Pretty standard game, easily win.
    G2 – Duress, Cub, Constrictor, Cub, Hydra with 3 Attunes mixed in, it was over very quickly
    G3 – Miss played this game and it cost me. Kept the board clear until turn 5-6. He had a Constrictor in play and around 8-10 energy. He played a cub. I thought I could harness lightning it after it landed but when I tried he was able to pump it out of range. I should have bolted the constrictor instead. Not sure I would have taken the game if I did but would have at least given me a chance. First loss of the day.

    R5 (2-1) Temur 3-1-1
    Really don’t remember and didn’t have any notes written down about it. Played Temur all day, they started to run together after a while.

    R6 (1-2) Temur 3-2-1
    Same here, don’t remember the details except G3. I was stuck on 3 lands, held him off for a while but didn’t draw my 4th land until turn 7-8 and was dead at that point. Second loss of the day.

    R7 (2-0) Temur 4-2-1
    G1 – standard stuff, played 2nd Approach on turn 8.
    G2 – Brought in all dudes again, just ran over him. Temur cannot deal with a Glorybringer.

    At this point realized if I win the next 2, I go to day 2 but so does the guy sitting next to me.

    R8 (1-0) Esper Approach 5-2-1
    G1 – Very long, about 35 minutes long. I landed an early Approach. I think that is the key when playing mirror matchup’s game 1. After that, he could never tap out to play his. Finally with a hand full of cards and about 15 mana on the board, I went for it. Played Approach, he disallowed, I disallowed, and he then cast 3 Censors in a row which I played 1 for each. Kind of funny but he was salty at this point.
    G2 – He let a Gideon land pretty early then played Cast Out on it. I Ixalan’s Binding his Cast Out and made a Gideon emblem. A few turns later I countered his first Gearhulk. With only a few minutes left to go in the match, he played his 2nd gearhulk. I let it resolve, then double Harnessed Lightning to kill it. He looked over at his friends that were sitting next to him (guessing there matches were already over) and said ‘There is no way I can win, is there?’ They asked if that was his last gearhulk. He got up and walked away from the table without answering. They had to pick up his cards for him. He was pissed.

    Everyone at the table had the same record at this point, so everyone there was in and win.

    R9 (1-2) Temur 5-3-1
    G1 – Pretty happy to see the Blue/Green land drop game one. I felt like I was in good shape against Temur. Game ended quickly with me winning on turn 9.
    G2 – He drew a great hand, mine was pretty slow. He won very quickly.
    G3 – Same as G2. He drew the cards and I didn’t.
    We talked after the game and said he had 2 great hands the last 2 games. I shake his hand and wished him luck day 2. All you can do.

    Over all very pleased with the deck. I misplayed some and it cost me but always felt like I could win any round. I did avoid Red all day but with the added burn mainboard, I felt like it would be a good matchup.

    Star of the day had to be Harness Lightning, it just did so much work all day. Spot removal for just about everything was very strong. Also The Locust God. He was awesome from the sideboard. Need to learn how to play him better but he won games for me when he hit the board. Will bump him up to a 2 slot in my SB to make sure I draw him when I side him in.

    Changes – Bringing in a bunch of dudes on game 2 worked a few times but really feel like the standard sideboard stagey would be more consistent and will go back to that. Will keep a few bombs but go back to more of a controlling sideboard.

    Censor just felt underwhelming all day. Everyone seemed to play around it and I think I countered something with it only 1-2 times all day Saturday. I think I sided it out every game. Not sure what I am going to do moving forward.

    Funny story of the tournament. On Friday during one of the 4 round events (trying to get 2 byes on Saturday) was playing against B/W Tokens. I kept the board clear and was able to land a Gideon on turn 6-7. 2 turns later, I cast my first Approach. He played Cast Out on my Gideon, then played Lost Legacy naming Approach. After taking all my Approach’s he looked at me and said ‘Want to go to game 2?’ I had an Ixalan’s Binding, 2 Disallows and some land in my hand. I said ‘No, let play this out’. Next round I Ixalan’ed his cast out, then beat him down with Gideon over the next 5 turns. He scooped his cards and stormed off.
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    @recerxen - Gratz on the nice finish and welcome to Jeskai Smile I agree 100% about Harness Lightning, it has made such a huge difference in the deck. I am still on the standard U/W list with a splash of red for it but the pure Draw-Go style looks very nice. How did the deck feel without Gideon and no Cast Outs? Did only running 2 Approachs give you any problems?

    Watched Alex Lloyd on twitch pilot the Esper list and was very interested in see he left in Opt and Censor on almost every match. Not sure how he sideboarded. Would you mind letting us know your plan?

    GP Atlanta was a blast, looking forward to GP Memphis in February and any PPTQs around this area until then.

    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    @Bauzzy - sweet looking deck and gratz on the nice finish.

    I ended up going 5-3-1 at the GP, missing day 2 because of the one draw. I will do a write up of it later this afternoon.

    Jeskai Approach Lists on MTGGoldFish and the GP Atl Esper list, IMO, are showing that players are starting to build decks based on the UWx Approach shell that lines up well with their meta and/or playing style. I really don't think there is going to be one 'right' list, in the end, there are going to be some core cards but a lot of variance in the different lists.

    What is interesting, none of the 3 color lists are running any Gideon, instead are running Gearhulk main. I run 2 Gideon main and feel like they are one of the best cards against mirror/control matchups. And even against aggro or energy decks, they always seem to do a ton of work. Has anyone here cut them? If so, what are your thoughts?
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    Esper Approach just won Atlanta GP! Grand Prix Atlanta 2017 I saw a bunch of Approach decks, played against 2. Get ready for more mirror matches.

    I think I talked to this guys while I was there. I ran into him on Saturday night after the event, he was running Esper and this sounds like his list. But I can't remember his name. If this is him, super nice guys. We talked about the Esper and Jeskai versions for a while.
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    Quote from Rondiggity »
    Finished day 1 of gp Atlanta at 7-2 with the list I posted earlier. 4z2 against energy, 2-0 against gpg, and won the mirror.


    Gratz, I ended up 5-3-1, missed day 2 because of a lose to Temur on Round 9. Missed played some on my part and they had a great hand. The rest of the day I was 4-0 against Temur.
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    I still like Gideon. He does not win very many G1 but he does keep me from losing them. He prevents a ton of damage and gives them someone to swing at for a few turns instead of me. Kinda funny fighting over him when I really don't care about it him. Force them into over committing to kill him. Then Fumigate or drop Approach. I like him G1 a lot better than gearhulk because G1 everyone has some sort of creature hate, Gideon ignore it but hulk eats it.

    As far as mana, usually I can cast harness on 2 and Gideon on 3 without much problem. But most times I wait to drop him until later, just depends on the board and what I have in my hand. Only time I drop him on 3 is if I have nothing else in my hand that I can cast or if I am trying to bait out a counter.
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    Thanks Ron, that is not a bad idea, I do bring in a few double reds from my sideboard.
    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
  • posted a message on U/W Control - aka. - Approach of the Second Cats 2.0
    I don't mean to be the Internet superhero but I really don't like Matignon's list. I feel like he was running that because he is a Draw-Go player and it was something that most of the pro's there were not excepting. Just my 2 cents.

    @devtin - I agree with you about Baral, I tried him and when he worked it was great but after a lot of testing, he did not make my 75. But I do disagree with you about Harness. My list is mainly a U/W with 4 harness mainboard. It makes all the difference. I have tried almost turning it into a U/R with a splash of white for approach and everything in between. All the standard list really needs is some spot removal. Harness can hit early and is still very relevant late game also. The mana base is very smooth. Yes, it is a 3 color deck and sometimes that does bite me in the butt, but not very often.

    Mainboard I am pretty set. Just float between the 4th Glimmer, the 4th Disallow or the 6th board wipe. Still trying to decide what I want to do with my sideboard. I can go a pretty standard U/W but add in some Abrade or Magma Spray. Or I can go all in on switching to almost a midrange deck with really impactful creatures. Going to take both to the GP and try them out tomorrow. Will decide which one I play Saturday after I am there.


    Posted in: Proven (Standard)
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