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Jaya Ballard Returns
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Shouldn't 4x Cavern of Souls be a must in that deck?
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Quote from RPD »
    As soon as you face a grafdiggers cage, she turns into a slow scry engine, and that's definitely not what I want out of a planeswalker.


    This argument is fair, and I can buy that she fits better in the Vizier shells than normal Knightfall, where the scry digs you towards combo.

    I won't argue that she is the end-all-be-all value card for us, but I still feel like you're undervaluing her. I like her flexibility - she can act like a must-kill 3-drop with all our dorks (something Tireless Tracker can't do, at least not without taking a lot of risk) as well as a 5-drop that 0s right away, AS WELL as a lategame fireball for 10. She has other advantages over Tracker, most importantly that she also discounts on mana while generating card advantage and she dodges Path and Fatal Push. That being said, her 0 misses like 1/6 of the time which obviously also matters, and I certainly don't dislike Tracker at all.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Quote from RPD »
    After playing both abzan vizier and this version, I think that four colors is one step in the right direction, but the sideboard had many things which made no sense and knight+retreat don't belong here. Trying to think about what to add to the deck instead of those cards but I can't decide on which ideas are good or bad. I'll put some of them here in case someone wants to try them or reply why they are good/bad. Constructive criticism is welcome!

    • -2 retreat -2 knight for some combination of finks/tracker/tamiyo field researcher. Finks buys some turns and is good with vizier even without the sac outlet. It's really bad vs grafdiggers cage though, which is played a lot this days. Tracker is great because it fuels our hand and we have tons of mana to spare in the lategame (20 lands + 12 dorks). It fits a similar role to duskwatch, while duskwatch is also a combo piece, so it's probably not worth it. Tamiyo is a nice way to draw cards and/or prevent damage, I like her more than nissa steward of elements (which is slower and less powerful overall)
    • Splashing blue in the abzan shells. That would allow playing both combos (life and mana) and reflector mage. Red splash isn't needed since there's no knight to fetch for kessig and orzhov pontiff plays as a different staticaster.


    Grats on the result! I am still having great results with Vizier Knightfall, but I wouldn't mind trying out -2 Retreat, and maybe +1 land and +1 Duskwatch Recruiter. I want to stay combo-centric G1, so the value cards you're suggesting seem like board options to me. I would still play 4 Knights, as they stand great on their own and support the combo with Wolf Run. Tireless Tracker is good, but I think I like Nissa as a 3-drop more with only 20 lands and no Courser of Kruphix. The primary reason I'm staying away from the Abzan shell is that I play MTGO, and infinite life combos aren't really a thing there.

    Without having tried her, I am very much down on Tamiyo - what does she accomplish for us? No synergy with the combo or with our twelve 0-power dorks, and doesn't do much against Control where Nissa at least scries and generates card advantage without relying on creatures staying on board. Additionally, being a 4-drop is rough.

    I am fairly convinced that Devoted Druid shenanigans is something we should be doing. However...

    Quote from TNDS »
    *Long Post*


    ... if I were to play regular Knightfall, I really like this list. Only adjustments I would make for the online meta is adding an Eidolon of Rhetoric to the board, maybe cutting the 3rd Staticaster since Counters Company decks are less represented on MTGO.

    Also, thanks for the report. Some sideboard comments:

    • Definitely bring in Unified Will against Living End, 90% of games against them revolve around countering Living End - if that resolves, we usually lose anyway. Also, Reflector Mage is terrible against them.
    • I like Vendilion Clique against control, flash threats are great to play around counterspells (this is why CoCo is so good against them).
    • Don't fret about the Skred Red loss, that deck is built to prey on green midrange decks like ours. Smile It's a tough matchup for sure.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Quote from RPD »
    That's amazing. One question, do you think that the retreats are still useful in that deck? Both combos are a bit unrelated and it seems weird to run them together.


    I would agree that the Retreats are some of the weaker cards in the deck. I don't mind them though, it sort of functions like redundancy with the other combo - overload on pieces so they can't answer it all, or maximize your topdeck wins against non-interactive stuff. I could see maybe dropping to one miser's copy if we need the space for something else, though I like being as combo-centric as possible in game 1.

    Quote from RPD »
    As Malko said, I feel like it's slightly favored. Reflector mage is a good card, same for blessed alliance. I want to discuss how to sideboard against them because I'm not totally sure. Advice is welcome.


    Do you really want Blessed Alliance against Eldrazi Tron? It's a super reactive card in a matchup where we want to get on board as much as possible, and it's fairly awful against Matter Reshaper and Endbringer. Also loses a lot of value when they know about it after Thought-Knot Seer. Then again, take my input with a grain of salt, I'm not a fan of the card in general. Smile

    I don't love Vendilion Clique against Walking Ballista and Endbringer. I have no experience with Gaddock Teeg, so don't know if the Teeg/Evo package is worth it - it only shuts off 2x Karn and 1-2x All is Dust, but I guess those are really impactful cards against us. Based on your list, I would think something like:

    +3 Reflector Mage
    +2 Unified Will
    (+1 Gaddock Teeg)
    (+1 Eldritch Evolution)

    -2 Retreat to Coralhelm
    -2 Birds of Paradise
    -2 Selfless Spirit
    (-1 Scavenging Ooze or Spellskite)

    I would probably cut Oozes, Spellskite and Voices before I cut value 3-drops - we are grinding here. If you want to hedge the matchup even more, a 3rd Unified Will in the board could be nice.

    Quote from deus837 »
    @MalkoMann:

    Good stuff. Although you touched on the Grixis Shadow matchup, I'd like to hear more about how that matchup has been for you (main-board and post-board)? That deck is my main concern right now when I evaluate basically anything, and it seems to me that those matches are very rarely won through combo, and more often won through attrition. So, I'm wondering how you think the Vizier version is positioned vis-a-vis the traditional version against Grixis?


    If my matchups were 100% Grixis Shadow, I would probably just want to play "normal" Knightfall, the version with Reflector Mage main (https://www.mtggoldfish.com/deck/675789#online); that deck has fewer dead cards against all their removal. That being said, I feel much more comfortable with Vizier Knightfall than when I played with GW Devoted Druid. All their interaction makes it really tough to combo off, but Knights often survive since they have to respect the Druid and she can turn the game around. Post-board we trim combo pieces and add Oozes, Paths and Nissas, and we can truck along just nicely with them in a fair game. Reflector Mage helps push CoCo through their Stubborn Denial by bouncing 4-power creatures - I usually just assume that they have it unless they have a super explosive opening, and it's really important to resolve, so try to buy time if you can. It's obviously not a great matchup, but I would guess at least 50%.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Quote from BANTxMAN »
    Nice Work Malko! I too have been playing Kelvin's vizier knightfall list and have been doing fairly well. I did have a run of bad luck this weekend though in a 60 man 1k paper event where I ran into eldrazi tron rounds 1 and 2 and lost both in 3 games. The games that i won were easy combo wins and the games that i lost were grindy bu felt pretty unfavored. How has the matchup been in your experience? Any advice for me? I need to improve this matchup if im going to keep bringing vizier knightfall to paper events at my lgs.


    I am overall 12-7 against Eldrazi Tron with Knightfall, and 2-0 specifically with the Devoted Druid version. It has always felt like a slightly favourable matchup to me with the traditional lists, because we grind so much better than they do, and I would assume that the Vizier version is quite good against it too. They run 2-3 Dismember as interaction, so setting up combo is reasonably easy, and their clock isn't that fast so we have time. Obviously Thought-Knot is good at breaking up our pieces, but Reflector Mage is gas against that line of play. I feel like I mostly lose against them when they nutdraw T3 Karn or set up a fast Endbringer + Collar, but that's true for all Tron decks and Eldrazi Tron does that much less consistently.

    Unified Will and Nissa are good sideboard options against them.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    So, I've been on an absolute tear with Kelvin's Vizier Knightfall mashup deck lately, putting up a 33-7 (!) result over the past 8 leagues: http://imgur.com/a/gs8WC . There is obviously a bit of positive variance here, the sample size is small, and these are friendly leagues so the opposition is a little softer, but still - averaging a league result better than 4-1 is pretty damn good, all things considered.

    My list is 72/75 from the list Kelvin posted in his latest article, with a few minor changes: https://www.mtggoldfish.com/deck/658632#online

    I would almost argue that it is a mistake playing without the Devoted Druid combo in GW decks right now. The combo goldfishes really well and is usually fast enough to go under Tron/Ad Nauseam/Titan Shift etc (so, matchups where we usually struggle), and just generally gives you a bunch of free wins that Voice of Resurgence and Qasali Pridemage do not. I played quite a bit with the pure GW combo version, but that felt a little too soft to interaction, and against Grixis Shadow in particular. This version has Knights, so you win a lot of games by taxing their removal on your combo dorks and then grinding them out with huge beaters. Having a tutorable Wolf Run as a combo enabler comes up a lot as well. Also, since Grixis Shadow has mostly pushed out spell-based combo decks from the meta, Reflector Mage feels really good right now and buys us a bunch of time to set up or beat down.

    I was skeptical about the two Nissas in the board for grindy matchups, but I have been fairly impressed with them. T1 dork -> T2 Nissa for 1 and +2 uptick is tough for control decks and Grixis Shadow to deal with, and obviously casting her for X = 50 or 100 beats most decks. Usually I would play Tireless Tracker in that spot, but with only 20 lands he loses some value.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Quote from MalkoMann »
    Quote from Dreadnaught33 »
    What deck would you take to a tournament right now malko?


    Tough to say, though probably not the mashup combo version that Kelvin advocates. Probably either pure Knightfall with Reflectors, or balls-to-the-wall GW combo without Knight of the Reliquary.


    I may have to redact my statement a little - just took Kelvins mashup combo list through a friendly league to a relatively easy 5-0, though I drew decent matchups. The list definitely has more legs than I gave it credit for, I'll play it through a few more leagues to learn more.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Quote from Dreadnaught33 »
    What deck would you take to a tournament right now malko?


    Tough to say, though probably not the mashup combo version that Kelvin advocates. Probably either pure Knightfall with Reflectors, or balls-to-the-wall GW combo without Knight of the Reliquary.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Not too hot, unfortunately - in the main event I went 4-2 and felt good, and then got insta-crushed 0-3 / 0-6 in the last three rounds. Generally, I won my good matchups and lost my bad ones, but probably ran below average in the matchup lottery. Drawing 8-Rack and Bogles was rough, especially as I had seen those decks combined 3 times online over 200 matches, and they seem like awful matchups.

    My matches were:

    8-Rack: L 1-2 (0-1)
    Abzan: W 2-0 (1-1)
    UW Control: W 2-0 (2-1)
    Grishoalbrand: W 2-0 (3-1) - thankyou Scavenging Ooze
    Affinity: L 0-2 (3-2) - in game 1, I combo'ed him for 21 damage and he had 22 life
    Grixis Shadow: W 2-1 (4-2) - best match of the tournament, went to time and I had to play insanely tight to win
    Bogles: L 0-2 (4-3)
    Burn: L 0-2 (4-4)
    Elves: L 0-2 (4-5)

    I played a single event Sunday and went 3-1, with wins against Abzan, Saheeli Combo and Merfolk, and loss against Tron. I opened a foil Verdant Catacombs in the prize packs though, so not too bad. Smile
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    The list I'm currently trying out has both. Smile Almost same as the pure Knightfall list from the latest Chew article, just a few changes in the board:

    https://www.mtggoldfish.com/deck/675789#online
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    I've been trying out a lot of different versions of GWx decks over the past weeks. I've been playing original Knightfall, Cobra Knightfall, Chew's Reflector Knightfall, a couple different versions of mashup Devoted Druid/Vizier Knightfall and pure GW Devoted Company. There are just so many options for us right now, which is really confusing but also kinda cool - it's a good problem to have.

    One thing I'd like to mention is a point from Kelvin's article, where he argues for Devoted Knightfall over normal Knightfall because of the rise of Vizier decks: Cut all the dorky Voices and Oozes and beat them over the head with your own combos backed by Staticasters and Reflectors to get the edge in the mirror, which makes sense. The online meta, however, doesn't have a lot of Vizier decks, but there's a BUNCH of Grixis Shadow. That is a horrible matchup for Devoted Druid and friends, and I would much rather have my Voices and Oozes back.

    I played a couple of friendly leagues with Kelvin's Reflector Knightfall list from his latest article, and casually went 5-0 and 4-1: http://imgur.com/a/T2AAc . Reflector Mage ranges from straight-up busted to a blank draw, but it's a decent fit in this shell. I like it much less in the Devoted Druid version, where you can't punish the tempo-loss as much with 2/2 beats.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Quote from JetpackBlues »
    I actually really disagree, I think the matchup is favourable, spell queller goes a very long way in these matchups, they have no maindeck removal for it and only a limited amount post board, which is stretced over your knights and ooze. Your fair plan is significantly better than theirs and you have ooze if they go for the finks route.
    When playing the fair game, your coursers and knights allow you to outgrind them. You have to be paitent with your removal and only use it when it poses a real threat. If it aint killing you, dont kill it.


    Okay, really interesting that you see it that way. I agree that we win the fair game, but they can stall for so long that the combo inevitably comes up. What do we do when they go T2 Devoted Druid and we don't have a path? Keep up Queller for the rest of the game? The fact they can end step CoCo or chord, and then untap and combo off through our interaction is also rough.

    I'll admit that my sample size is small (I am 2-4 against Abzan Company in total), but it certainly does not feel like a favourable matchup to me, especially so with Vizier in the mix. All the creature-toolbox decks seem this way to me, we do not want to be facing Chord of Calling in general imo.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Quote from Neon989 »
    Hey guys,

    i see a rising in the counters company Deck, but didn't play this match yet. How do you beat it? What are good sb-options?


    I have always considered Abzan Company a pretty poor matchup, they are faster than we are and we only have 4x Path for interaction, in addition to them being a wide creature deck and the board stall favoring them. These new Vizier lists seems even worse, as their combo is even faster and we can't break it up with Scooze as we could with the Finks combo. Izzet Staticaster is of course still good, but it cannot break up the combo as they can go off at instant speed with Devoted Druid already in play. Tough, tough matchup in my opinion.

    If we really want dedicated hate against them - maybe Eldritch Evolution into Linvala? Seems sketchy. Negates for their Chords and CoCos is good (Negate being way better than Unified Will here, as discussed earlier).
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Quote from TNDS »
    Hi guys, I've been a Knightfall player religiously for the last four months, and I love the deck. I read this thread most days and've only now made an account Grin I love the fact we have so many 5-0 list players and people that care about the deck. Although it doesn't count for much, In matches I'm currently 26-11 in my LGS's Modern Tuesdays which are pretty competitive with a very 'Tier' meta.

    My big fear is that in my local meta Burn is fairly popular. Because of this I'm on the 2-1 split Courser of Kruphix to Tracker. Now I love Tracker and I for the most part think it is criminally underplayed in Modern, and I think the synergy with KotR in our deck is INSANE. BUT I think Courser is just such as game changing card against Burn/Aggro. I'm worried that moving to the full on Lotus Cobra/Tireless Tracker list will let us do silly things to Midrange and control decks, but puts us possibly in a much weaker position against hard Aggro. I'm super interested in it so much that I just order my 4 Lotus Cobras Grin But I wonder what people think to that, as I think it probably will leave us defensively a bit more bare.

    Also people seem to have started to dip in the amount of Selfless Spirits run Mainboard in favour of Scooze which I like. But as most lists are now mostly on 1 maybe 2 I'm wondering that, yes it's a lovely feeling having a selfless out on board protecting a Queller which is holding something important, but is it one of the first pieces of fat in the deck that could be cut?


    Welcome! Smile Grats on the good results so far.

    I am also on the 2/1 split of Courser/Tracker, I think a lot of people are - Courser is secretly one of the cornerstones of our deck, imo. I hedged by placing the second copy of Tireless Tracker in the board, after I couldn't find a way to fit it into the main. I want to play 8 dorks, but some people cut a Birds for the extra value 3drop, which I find a little greedy. Gun to my head I probably would cut the 3rd Voice for another 3drop, but the online meta that I play in is beginning to have a lot of control. Cutting a Path seems insane to me, although I've seen lists that do that.

    Scooze is just plain great, it is our best card in so many matchups. I think 3 is correct. The Selfless Spirit is definitely a flexspot, and I agree that it is one of the lowest priority creatures in the deck, but it's nice to have options with CoCo.

    On another note, I want to talk a little more about Eidolon of Rhetoric in the board. I was on the fence about adding it in, since it is a powerful but quite narrow hoser against Ad Nauseam, Storm and Living End specifically, but I have been incredibly impressed with it against UW and Grixis control. Snapcaster/counterspell decks get hosed way harder by this than I realized, and as long as we have the board with a Eidolon in play, they cannot win counterwars or cast spells from under Queller - in essence, Queller becomes a hard counter on legs. Also, they cannot spend time drawing cards, it feels great having an Eidolon in play when the last counter comes off Ancestral Vision. Smile Eldritch Evolution isn't good in this matchup though for fear of getting countered, so one copy is all we get. For now, it has earned its slot in my board for sure.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Knightfall/Bant Company
    Quote from mirrislegend »
    I'm surprised to see 2x Unified Will persisting. According to MalkoMan's spreadsheet, Unified Will is brought in against only 1 deck that Negate is not, meaning Negate suffices in place of Unified Will in every case but one. Further, Negate is brought in against more decks than Unified Will. Between Negate overlapping almost all of Unified Will's applications and Negate having more applications than Unified Will, it seems pretty intuitive to me to cut both Unified Will for 2 more Negate or for 1 Negate and 1 of something else.

    Does somebody have a perspective on Unified Will that I'm missing? Does the anti-creature power of Negate vs Eldrazi Tron really elevate Unified Will over more Negates?


    There are a few points to be made here. First off, some matchups have specific spells be good, such as Negate vs Burn or Elves and Unified Will against Eldrazi Tron. Secondly, when you board in both counterspells, they have different functionality within the matchup. Imagine having 4 Negates against Tron and the play a Ulamog, or similarly against Valakut when they play Primeval Titan. The split of counterspells gives us flexibility.

    Quote from CornOnJacob22 »
    I posted about this a while ago, but I think one of the counterspells in the sideboard should definitely be a Disdainful Stroke. It is great against the big mana decks, and it can both creature and noncreature spells. I don't know whether it's better to run 2 Unified Will, 1 Negate, and 1 Disdainful Stroke, or 1/2/1 with the 2-of being Negate.


    I don't quite buy this. Against Tron specifically, sure Disdainful Stroke is great, but against a broad field? Can you elaborate on why it warrants a slot?
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
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