https://www.reddit.com/r/ModernMagic/comments/7tmuyp/thopter_foundrysword_of_the_meek_too_slow_for/ so lots of hate for the combo on reddit, but theres a couple interesting comments that i think might be talking about the same deck (link below). apparently someone top 8'd an event in canberra with a list running chalice, thoptersword, trinisphere, crucible and witchbane orb in then main, and relic, needle, and fountain all in the board. looks spicy as hell and goes back to what i was saying a few weeks back, could we be undervaluing trinisphere in modern? I still think crucible might just be a pipe dream but i've always been impressed with quicksilver fountain.
i guess the SSG are there for turn 1 chalice, turn 2 bridge/trinisphere etc. might put a similar list together and try it out! what does everyone else think? and do we know if this person is on the thread, i'm gonna message the guy on reddit as well since i'd like to chat to him about the list
The points about the hate are true, though maybe a little overblown. Surgical Extraction and Relic are pretty easy pieces of hate to play around, and some of the most common hate. Most artifact destruction hate can be answered with redundant pieces and/or welding jar. Stony Silence is the biggest hurt, followed by Leyline of the Void, then Rest in Peace imo. That said, I've frequently beat all of those. Decks that play stony silence often have little to no way to actually destroy something like ensnaring bridge, so hiding behind a bridge to get enough artifacts for a lethal Tezz is frequently an out.
I think the biggest issue with the hate isn't that it usually kills you, it's just that it slows down your already kinda slow gameplan to play around it. This is why I always found midrange matches some of the easiest matches. They tend to give you a lot more time to play around stuff.
I do think people underestimate the thopter sword combo a bit too. I find it's rare you lose once you untap with it. Most decks rely on attacking with creatures to kill you, and thopter sword shuts that down pretty well, even when not paired with bridge. The biggest issues being the combo decks and big mana decks, as they can typically just ignore thopter sword completely.
The deck does have some serious weaknesses, though I think it's got a lot of power as well in it. Sadly not a lot of people playing it to come to a quicker consensus on if there is a "best" build, and what that looks like.
I'm gonna try this trinisphere chalice build. I've played a but with trinisphere in the past, and it's great vs something like storm. I have run into issues where it's hard to empty my hand when I have both trinisphere and bridge out, so I wonder if that'll be an issue here or not.
I'm also not sold on Liliana in the deck. I feel like it sounds like a great idea, but every time I play with it I find her kinda awkward. Especially the double black mana cost when you are trying to get triple blue asap and have a bunch of colourless sources.
I'll be playing the deck at GP Toronto, it's probably the wrong choice for a GP, but man, I love playing it too much to pass it up. Just hope I dodge tron
So I tried out the Tezzeret Stax build with maindeck chalices and trinispheres. I didn't get many matches in, so take my thoughts with a grain of salt. In the end it felt really really slow. You've got all of nothing to do turn 1 unless it's a chalice for 0, and turn 2 is going to only every be foundry, sword, chalice or mana rocks really (ok, 1 brutality gives you some interaction), but for the most part you aren't doing much of anything relevant until turn 3. I find this tends to be really clunky and slow. I also found it could be very difficult to actually empty your hand at a reasonable speed for Ensnaring Bridge, when everything in your deck costs 2 or more, and trinisphere doesn't help that.
It feels like if you don't have a chalice on 2, or a foundry + sword on turns 2 and 3, the deck isn't doing enough.
I'm still a big fan of the Turbo Tezz build with a lot more cheaper spells. It is able to play a lot of discard to interact on the early turns, a number of 0 and 1 cost cards makes it a lot easier to empty your hand to help with bridge. I think the stax version has a lot of powerful cards that don't quite work well enough with eachother for me. I'm not really a fan of Crucible and only 1 field of ruins and 1 ghost quarter.
Anyway, obviously he did well with it, I just wasn't feeling it.
I went up to 4/3 thopter sword pieces as I've seen more burn lately, and so often I just want it in play asap. Especially against burn Whir can sometimes be a bit too slow. I've been fairly happy with extra discard over serum visions to interact on those early turns. I've been trying the Talismans over Pentad Prism lately and liking it. Prism certainly has a bit more speed with Whir, but I do like the fact that Talisman is just ramp over the longer game. One downside is also is that Abrupt Decay/Pulse out of the board is a bit harder to cast, as I also dropped an Opal. So that's a bit of a concern, which might send me back to Pentad Prism. If there was a BG talisman I could maybe go that route, but I don't really want to go with a signet, I like having the option of turn 2 talisman and immediately tap it to cast a discard spell.
I played with Trinisphere quite a bit and found it good in two matchups. Storm and Shadow. Storm for the obvious reasons, and Shadow because it's a bunch of cheap spells but the creatures are big. Trini definitely impacts your ability to empty your own hand which makes it bad against cheap go wide decks looking to get under burn. I had started testing it with 3, fairly quickly got down to 1 and stuck there for a while before just determining the 3rd chalice is nearly as good and is stronger against a lot more decks like Tron, Infect, Burn etc.
Pilot for the stax list here. TBH have no clue how I managed to top8 since I don't play nearly as much as most people and the deck is pretty much designed just to rip on burn and shadow decks.
Some notes from the tourney:
- Trinisphere is a very situational card but does reasonably well against half the meta trying to out pace you. If you get it down early enough it can lock people out of the game for they've kept land light hands. It is abysmall in some matchups notably Ux control shells where it helps them more than it helps us.
- Liliana rarely comes to my hand so can't say much about her. Did get to ult her vs rg Tron to get rid of o-stone at one point though so there's that.
- This deck struggles hard vs Stony silence. Might consider running some number of abrupt decays in the board.
- I'm looking at search for azcanta as a way to fix draws, seems decent. You tend to occasionally end in situations where you want to dig deeper and not draw multiple of the same lock pieces. Also another blue source never hurt anybody.
- MD crucible has been good to me, additional artifacts to sac to thoper foundry with citadel, infinite tutoring with fair and of course the gq/field combo(considering running another field, unsure what to cut for it though). Very versatile card for the deck imo.
- this deck seems really weak to cryptic command though. Needs a way to go around having lock pieces bounced. Feels bad everytime.
- sb could use a lot of work. Rejection felt meh, never really found a use for it and I'm running chalices MB to slow down Tron and affinity anyways. And have pitching needle for the main things hurting me from either.
- pentad prism over performed everygame, and was usually worth guiding out t1 to get out a t2 tezz for 5/5 beats.
- creatures are still a pain to deal with, considering running more wraths.
-maybe I'm just unlucky but I only drew whir a couple times in the whole tourney. Anyone with experience can comment on this?
Whir is amazing, and I think the biggest reason this deck even has a chance. I love that it lets you play a bunch of one ofs and potentially have access to them through Whir. The downside is it skews your manabase more heavily to blue. I miss the days of being able to run a bunch of Darksteel Citadels and Ghost Quarters, but with Whir it makes that plan hard. But it's worth it. It provides a lot of great outs to situations. Like I've just crushed Storm game 1 by Whir'ing for my maindeck Grafdigger's Cage after they end step Gifts, or whiring for a Pithing Needle to shut down Liliana or something like that.
I've personally found stony silence not as big of a problem as I thought it would be. A lot of stony silence decks don't put you under a ton of pressure, or often have many/any ways to get rid of a bridge. So sitting behind a bridge with maybe a Padeem or Welding Jar to protect it, and build up enough artifacts to Ult tezz, or draw into Abrupt Decay/Pulse becomes a really viable way to win. It does hurt turning off your mana rocks and thopter sword, but things like Chalice and Bridge remain unaffected, so i feel in the end I've actually beat Stony Silence as much or more than I've lost to it. It is probably one of the best pieces of hate vs us though, especially on turn 2. Only thing worse is probably shatterstorm, but I never see that.
As for Abrupt Decay/Maelstrom Pulse in the board, I LOVE them. I find I board them in almost every time. Great catchall answers to sideboard hate and provide more outs to Stony/RiP/Leyline than just Tezz.
Is Nihil Spellbomb just straight up better than Relic? I find myself wanting to keep certain cards in my graveyard fairly often, and the corner case of saccing it to a Foundry and still drawing a card for B looks nice. Also, the option to draw (or not draw) a card in an Ensnaring Bridge deck is just another % of value you don't notice until playing the card. Of course the only situations where that's relevant is against something like Vengevine/Hollow One.
Any links to the video coverage from CanCom? I can't find anything on google.
I play Nihil Spellbomb over Relic in most decks that have access to black mana. I agree with Search for Azcanta, Thopter combo, and in some cases Academy Ruins it would make sense here over Relic. Currently I don't in my list because I want to be able to gain value against certain decks incrementally throughout the game. In the matchups I want gy hate I'm really looking to slow them down more than get a one off impactful hit. This being because these decks (Tezz decks) don't always close fast. In a deck running Death's Shadow or Goyf to close quickly I'd almost certainly running Nihil.
It's also worth mentioning that Nihil is potentially 1 mana cheaper for the clear a graveyard effect (if you are sure your opponent has a Delve creature in hand). This is incredibly relevant on the draw.
I think both Relic and Spellbomb are perfectly viable options. I personally like Relic more. I like that it's tap ability lets you sometimes get a lot of value out of it without cracking it. Like against delve cards, a turn 1 or 2 relic just tapping every turn can do a lot of work. I'd generally vastly prefer the relic vs decks with delve cards. I also don't mind that it exiles my yard. I don't really find myself using my yard much at all other than Sword which tends not to sit there long. So I don't mind exiling my own yard
ok so lots of aggro and tron at the pro tour. good news about aggro since we dont usually have issues with many aggro decks, the high number of tron is annoying though, so we ideally need to start finding more/better ways of dealing with that deck, but otherwise i feel like we could be reasonably well positioned?!
I'm not convinced there is a whole lot we can do, but I am experimenting with cutting my academy ruins and inventor's fair and one other land, bringing in 3 ghost quarters, then I made room for a maindeck crucible. Though so far I lost the only game I played against tron. Though I am kinda liking it, as I rarely ever activated fair or ruins. extra ways to deal with nexuses out of affinity are really nice
lots of aggro has just made me go up to 4 foundry/3 sword to maximize odds of just drawing into them, which is usually great vs anything attacking you to death
it's not really gameplay related, but I have always enjoying making my own custom Star Wars themed tokens for my decks. Ages ago I made A-Wing thopters and have been using them in paper for awhile. Though I recently had an idea to make new one that fit in the dice tray of my deckbox (Ultimate Guard Flip & Tray). So today I made these, which turned out pretty well I think. Similarly I recently made some 5/5 tokens for artifacts I animate with Tezz
so given the pro tour result, i feel we need to ask the question... what do we do if bridge gets banned? i dont think it'd be that devastating to us since we can play a more removal heavy list but it would definitely hurt. main damnations? glint nest cranes and hangarback walkers?
... So effort put into planning for events that are, imo, very unlikely, is probably a waste of effort
Good advice. Thanks.
On more of a ‘sure thing’ note then, given that everyone and their brother will be running a bunch of artifact hate, any advice on potential SB tech? I see some lists have been running Padeem, but how does that go with trying to dump your hand for bridge?
I find Padeem great. People often board out removal because it's bad, so they don't have a lot of ways to answer Padeem. usually by the time you have padeem out, it's not too hard to play 2 things a turn, especially when one is often a land. Though if you are facing down lots of 1/1 tokens, then there can be an issue there as drawing 2 lands is a real possibility. But overall I love a padeem in the board.
I also really like the abrupt decays and pulses to help out vs hate like Stony and Relic. As for beating actually artifact destruction, outside of Padeem it can be an issue. Welding Jars are good. Sometimes it's a matter of hoping you can get either a jar out, or redundant pieces, or something like a chalice of the void out. You can sometimes beat artifact destruction by just overwhelming them with threats, through the thopter sword combo, bridge, chalice, etc. Shatterstorm is a nightmare scenario though
(Systrill, I watched pretty much all of your streams with the deck ^^)
For my experience of like two hundred matches in stores and in PPTQ (I did two top 8 with the deck in PPTQ) and kind of the same online, I would say I'm pretty sure of most of the things in my maindeck.
Some things I can ad to the debate and contribution :
- Run obviousely 4 Whir, 4 Foundry, 3 Sword (debate for running 2...don't think it's a good idea), 3 Bridge.
- Run nine 0 Mana cost artifacts : 2 Jar, 3 Mox & 4 Mishra B (I recently cut a Mishra for a Tormod crypt to fight the actual format)
- I am Running 2 Decay main / 1 Decay & 1 Pulse in side, no collective brutality (I use to, but cut them, and don't miss them) and I'm soooo confortable with it because you have to deal with enchantement or artifacts for sure game two but also sometimes game one. And loose just because you just cant deal with an enchantement feels bad... And That's also good removal to get rid of spell quellers, scooze or many ennoying 2 drop.
- Running 4 prism and 4 Tezz had been really good for me, after first played 3& 3 ; because Tezz beatdown is a real plan after all, and Prism is life in this deck ! Helping whir, Tezz T3, Animate, Sac, Fighting a Blood moon, Put Three counters when Thalia's on the board... Pretty much everything you want in the deck.
- Graff digger Main friends ! Those days it's such a good things and be abble to win against storm first game sometimes through it in response, or in instant speed with whir in response to snap, chord or coco that's too good I think so. Also stops lingering souls flashback, now more and more looting and hollow one and dredge strategies.
- Pithing Needle 1 main and 1 sideboard, pretty much no choices... Needle cans be a real condition of winning with the deck. Spyglass is a bit to expensive in my opinion. And we need those two needles to fight Tron...(Nightmare matchup ^^)
- 4 Thoughtseize. I use to play inquisition and Brutaluty but the hardest matchups need Thoughtseize I think. Just unfortunately it turns your Burn matchup a bit worse... But still like even so I took that decision.
- And, THE instant win condition for the deck (seriousely I won many many games with it) run 1 copy of KCI main ! Because if you have thopter sword it's basically infinite Thopter, Life and colorless mana ! and sometimes in instant speed ^^ (Defeat Titanshift or Tron this way felt sooo good believe me ^^)
For the sideboard... With the actual format I am less sure, and trying things.
I'm just sure we have to run 3 Chalices, 1 Decay & 1 Pulse, At least one damnation, 1 Ethersworn canonist, 1 Needle, Witchban orb.
The 3 stoic rebutal are pretty good against control decks, Tron, Big combo decks and Titanshift wich I think is sweet.
Systrill you said you think padeem is good. I am always wondering about him, because I've pretty never put him on the board... You think we should keep him in sideboard for sure ? If you say so I will keep him for the GP.
For the rest I tried Surgical ext, Spreading seas, Lost legacy (pretty good sometimes), few damnations, flaying tendrill...
The big hate cards against the deck are for me not Stony or RIP. Shatterstorm is a nightmare, as that F*****g Sprea wich is going through everything we have... Aven mindcensor, Meddling mage, Scooze, Kataki... Grudge is really ennoying too.
But I think if you are not ready to fight the hate you wouldn't play this deck ^^
To my experience the worst matchups are Classic Tron (Eldrazi is waaaay easyer to beat), TitanShift... Storm is...Even but sometimes you just cant do nothing if they are too speed. Same for Burn... It's not an easy matchup if you are not able to combo speed... And I had big struggles to defeat Lantern ! What do you think about that matchup ???
So tell me what do you think about the list, the ideas I mentionned, about what you think we should run in sideboard after this pro tour, if you have problems like me to defeat lantern ^^
Best regards !
(And sorry for my english ^^ as I said I'm french).