Shoppin around for a legacy deck and the two decks I was considering were Death n Taxes and Merfolk -- however this deck looks like it's having a surge in popularity. How does its competitiveness compare to the two other decks I mentioned? It's a bit pricey however I feel like I could afford it considering I already have many of the cards like Grove of the Burnwillows, a Liliana, a Thoughtseize, some of the Chalices, and the Life from the Loams. Would you recommend this? Thanks.
My SB choices:
I had some idea of what the field would be. I know there would at least be miracles, some delver, Rest in Pieces, storm, elves, DnT, and burn. In OKC I have never seen dredge, any SnT decks, or Eldrazi. I replaced Thoughtseize with Duress and added a COP:Red as a concession to Burn.
In my person testing the Eldrazi matchup hasn't been great. It's made even more awkward by the lack of good SB cards to put in to replace Chalice, which is completely dead. I was super excited when I saw the tech of SB Swords to Plowshares. I played 3 matches online and was in love immediately. Dark Depths is in the MKM list, so I decided to try it. My impressions were that it was good vs Miracles and Sharless, as well as giving a fast clock agaisnt decks like Elves and Combo
The Field (9 players):
TES (I think)
Rest in Pieces
Round 1: Burn 2-1
I have Deathrite into Chalice while I'm getting beaten down by a Goblin Guide and a Swiftspear. I'm able to stabilize at 3 with a Scavenging Ooze that quickly puts me up to 6 while he's topdecking.
I have a turn 1 Chalice into turn 2 Knight. At somepoint he waiting til I Zenith for 2 (off land land mox), and Prices in response. I was able to use Knight to get a Wasteland and Armageddon myself to take 0 and then got Gaddock Teeg. I won at 4 life by attacking with enough times with an 8/8.
Round 2: Curtis with Canadian Thresh 2-1
I loaned Curtis some Forces for this event so I knew his whole list (2 Pierce 2 Dismember 2 Forked bolt). This matchup is supposed to be great but it still makes me nervous.
I'm on the play. He leads on Goose and I lead on cycling land into T2 Chalice. Daze. He casts Goyf. I resolve Library. He plays a Delver and drops me to 15. I play Liliana and eat the Goose. He kills Lili and drops me to 11. I realize I can't play around Daze here, I need knight to stabilize. So I cast it, he Dazes, and we're on to game 2.
+ 3 StoP, Thalia,
- 3 Dark Confidant, Teeg
I don't remember much about the next two games but he didn't lead either of them with a turn 1 creature. I kept removal heavy hands both games, and Swords was great. It never interfered with a Chalice and I was able to wasteland lock him both games. Both games I drew the one Confidant left in my deck. In game 2 he chump blocked a Goyf, and in game 3 I had a library and he was insane. Need to reconsider this SB strategy maybe.
Round 3: Chris Team America 2-0
Both games he never gets his mana online.
I'm on the draw, mull to 5, and open with land Mox Mox Knight of the reliquary, which he every so smugly Dazes. My last card in hand is Aprupt Decay, but that was enough. He shows me True-name Nemesis but I race it with dorks and pFire.
+ Charm, Deluge
61 cards YOLO
I boarded in answers to TNN and that's it. Always tell your opponent when you're playing 61 cards. They tilt.
In game 2 he has double Deathrite and I have double Pfire. He lets a DRS die and eats the pFire with the other. I cast the second pFire, he forces, then eats it. I decay the Deathrite, and a couple turns later rip the third pFire and find a Grove with Loam.
Round 4: Ed with TES (I think) 1-2
Ed's deck is weird to me. It's very fast. He has Burning Wish and IT, very little discard, lots of Chrome Moxen (which let him Ad Nauseum with 0 mana), and never uses PiF.
Game 1 I'm on the play and I Sneep:
land land Mox Chalice Chalice Decay Knight. Chalice 0, Chalice 1, go.
I mull aggressively looking for interaction. I keep turn 1 Library, he kills me on turn 2.
I mull aggressively looking for interaction. I keep turn 1 Chalice into Dark Confidant into Knight. He blows up my Chalice and Decays my Bob. I rip Duress and he has:
Tutor, Tutor, Burning Wish, Decay, LED, land (2 lands in play)
My board is a Knight (4/4) and nothing else. He's at 11.
What do you take here?
I take Decay figuring he has nothing and I need to kill him. If I get to attack him to 7 that shuts off Ad Nauseum and I should be able to win if I get just one more turn. I incorrectly deduced he needed more than one ritual off the top to kill me.
Of course he rips Dark Ritual and kills me with AdN on his next turn.
At this point there's a clean cut; 4 players are 3-1. Unfortunately, I've played against all of them so I get a pairdown and have to play the last round and face elimination.
Round 5: Miracles (Ponder) 2-0
Game 1: I have Chalice into Bob. He Counterspells some things, but I have more Wastelands than he has answers to Chalice. Bob takes me home.
Game 2: I get an early Lili and he has ALL The basics. I watch him sit there with 5 basics while discarding more basics and fetches to Lili. Eventually I stick a Knight and fetch Stage. I use Lili ultimate to blow up all his white sources, resolve a Chalice on 1, and prepare to kill him with Marit Lage. He topdecks Karakas. How enfuriating. So I wasteland it and kill him next turn instead.
I have the number 1 seed for top 4, followed by TES, Team America, and Canadian Thresh
Upper seed gets the play and I open cycling land into library. He has a turn 1 Delver turn 2 Goyf and some Dazes
and I don't find removal in time.
- 3 Dark Confidant, 1 Teeg
+ 3 StoP, Thalia
I keep a pile of removal and draw my 1 Confidant again, he's very nice to me and I get to wasteland my opponent while he complains I'm taking forever to kill him. Magic as it's finest. I also got Priced for 10 this game.
He keeps the sketchiest hand I've ever seen and goes turn 1 Wasteland me, turn 2 play Wasteland, use it to cast Pithing Needle, name Wasteland. I learned afterward he kept 0 Islands
Consequestly, I have 3 mana by the time he plays his first dude. Easy mode. I cast the spells in my deck and eventually Decay the Needle while I have 3 wastelands in play and get a Flawless Victory.
Ed and I are both going to Columbus and want the byes so we split the store credit and play it out.
I keep something bad idr. He kills me on his turn 1.
- 4 Decay, 2 Loam, 1 Maze of Ith, 1 Forest, 2 pFire,
+ Thalia, 2 Canonist, 2 Duress, Charm, Deluge, Dark Depths, Stage, Crop Rot
After thinking about it, I decided I wanted Marit Lage in my deck. It just gives me a way to race him.
fetchland, Wasteland, cycling land, Bob, Lili
He probes me writes down my hand and goes into the Tank. I figure I must be dead, but Ed's a good guy and earned the byes. He counts all the spells in his hand, and mutters something about not having enough red mana (for Empty the Warrens). I think he convinced himself that he could empty and therefor a Tendrils would have to be enough. Se he starts storming, at the end of the turn, I'm at 1, and he's at 36. Then he says go with 0 cards in hand.
I cycle into a Mox and draw another land so I get to play a Lili agaisnt a topdecking storm opponent. Eventually I draw ScOoze and get to eat all the Dark Confidants I had to discard and he scoops at 21 life when I have a Chalice at 0, 1, and 2 (yay topdecks).
I keep turn 1 Chalice with other stuff.
He doesn't kill me turn 1, which is nice, Turn 2 he has Decay for my Chalice. We play draw go for while (I drew Dark Depths and got to melt it a little). Eventually I draw Library, he Decays it, and I draw Canonist. Canonist sticks around to long enough for me to draw a Dark Confidant and a Duress and I win by attacking with 2/2s.
The deck ran smooth as butter. The biggest thing I learned is that if you deck has Mox Diamond in it, you should mulligan way more aggressively. It's night and day the difference having that card makes. It's also not vulnerable to Wasteland, and it feels like cheating. You get to play with Moxen and your opponents don't.
Most rounds I boarded in 1-drops while leaving the Chalices in my deck. My logic was that the 1-drops in question (StoP v delver and Duress v storm) are worth it if they get to resolve, and if you have a Chalice you're pretty far ahead anyway. I never had a negative interaction come up; my opponents were more than willing to blow up my Chalices and free the cards in my hand. I was also able to use Library + Loam to clear StoPs from the top of my deck in 2 games were I had a Chalice in play.
Against Delver, my plan was to resolve Chalice at all costs, then try to clean up the creatures afterward. This works fine v BUG variants, but agaisnt RUG I had to change my strategy. Both games I died it was because I put a higher premium on getting value permanents in play than I did killing all the creatures. Kill the dudes first, play your Chalice and Library second.
Againt Miracles, resolve a Chalice as early as possible. It protects your dudes from StoP, and you get to Decay their top, which I find hilarious. Follow a Chalice with a Dark Confidant and it's very hard to lose.
I didn't miss having a Planewalker, but I also didn't play anyway matches where having one would matter. I never felt like I needed Dark Depths, but I understand it's appeal. I does the same thing it does for Maverick; gives you a quick kill with Knight through Rest in Piece. Reclamation Sage wasn't great, but I think it's necessary. I never missed Thoughtseize, and I might keep Duress around for longer. I think this choice comes down to if you think you'll play more Burn or Sneak n Show. Playing Decay over Lili seems pretty even. they both kill one of your Delver opponent's creatures. Having a third Lili for storm and miracles is better than the 4th Decay, so I look forward to my next event when I'll remember to borrow the cards I need.
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GW(G/B) Maverick RRR Burn (G/B)G(G/R) Elves!
Building: Who knows?
EDH WR Jor Kadeen - 100% pimp URG Maelstrom Wanderer - rampramprampbomb.dec UG Prime Speaker Zegana Control UBR Gwendlyn di Corci and her band of Scantily Clad Women UR Pauper Gelectrode
Primarily Garruk is used as a haymaker/repeated CA engine in fair mirrors. There's a lot of cards that could potentially fill that role, so Garruk isn't needed but some people play him. Ultimately I think that Grim Flayer does a similar thing for less mana, but I haven't played extensively with Garruk.