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  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    I played 3 rounds of tournament Modern yesterday with this list:

    If I owned a Harsh Mentor I would have put that in the SB over 1 Smash to Smithereens, and same goes for 1 Ramunap Ruins over 1 Mountain in the main deck.

    Match 1, R/G Tron:
    Game 1- Tron doesn't do much in the opening turns, and I go FSD, Mogg War Marshal, dude + Bushwhacker to put him at 4 on turn 3. Burn and goblins wins it.
    SB: -1 Legion Loyalist, -2 Reckless Bushwhacker, +2 Molten Rain, +1 Kari Zev's Expertise
    Game 2- I keep a terrible(!) hand of 4 Mountain, 1 Grenade, 1 Bolt, 1 War Marshal. I'm hate mulliganing in any deck and am particularly averse to going to 6 in an 18 land deck with no cantrips, but clearly this was a bad keep. He goes T3 Karn, T4 Wurmcoil, T5 Ugin...
    Game 3- I keep a hand of 3 Mountain, Mogg Fanatic(?), Devastating Summons, Kari Zev's Expertise, and Molten Rain. I play Mogg and he plays a non-Tron land. I topdeck a land and decide to play Devastating Summons for X=1, knowing that I'll get back to 3 lands for Molten Rain before he hits Tron. My 1/1s chip in, Molten Rain buys time. He eventually pyroclasms, but I play FSD + Bushwhacker to immediately rebuild my board and hit for 5. Eventually burn wins it.
    1-0 (2-1 in games)

    Match 2, Lantern:
    Game 1- I'm on the draw and start with T1 Guide, T2 Piledriver. He has a turn 3 Witchbane Orb, and I see through Lantern that he will have Ensnaring Bridge next turn. On my turn 3 I play Guide #2 and a kicked bushwhacker for exact lethal!
    SB: -4 Legion Loyalist, -3 Reckless Bushwhacker, -1 Devastating Summons, -1 Mogg War Marshal , +3 Goblin Fireslinger, +2 Grim Lavamancer, +3 Smash to Smithereens, +1 Goblin Piledriver
    Game 2- He thoughtseizes me, and sees a few more goblins, bolt, and grenade. I chip in with small goblins. He lands a turn 3 Bridge with 2 cards in hand, which means I can only attack for 4, putting him at 12 life. On his turn 4 he plays a tapped land and a spell (turns out he had the Witchbane Orb in hand and just needed a 4th mana). Since he has 1 card in hand, I can attack with 3 1/1s, Sac a Mogg Fanatic, bolt + grenade for lethal.
    2-0 (4-1 in games)

    Match 3, G/B Tron:
    Game 1- Opponent has turn 3 tron + Karn on a mull to 4. Luckily Karn stinks against goblins and I'm able to attack him to 3 life. He begins to stabilize with O-Stone and Worldbreaker. I have bolts in hand, but no board and no creatures. I topdeck a Cavern of Souls Frown I play out some 1/1s to try and build a board. I draw a mountain 2 turns before we would have restarted the game with Karn.
    SB: -3 Legion Loyalist, -2 Reckless Bushwhacker, +2 Molten Rain, +3 Goblin Fireslinger
    Game 2- Opponent mulls to 4 again and I'm able to chip him down to 13 before he gets turn 4 Tron + Thragtusk. Next turn I chip him down to ~13 again. He plays a 2nd Thragtusk, and I attack through them to get him to 13 life again! He drops a Wurmcoil, and I topdeck my third land to go Bolt + Grenade + Grenade.
    I made a mistake in G2 when I attacked into his Thragtusk. I attacked with all 4 of my 1/1s including a Goblin Fireslinger (which he blocked) for 3 guaranteed damage. I should have just attacked with 3 and pinged with the Fireslinger. This might have mattered if I was off of lethal by a few points.
    3-0 (6-1 in games)

    The next four rounds of the tournament were legacy where I went 2-2 with Grixis Delver, good enough for top 16!

    Overall, no one expected goblins to be so fast. Even I surprised myself with the turn 3 win against lantern! I'm still figuring out sideboarding for this deck. None of my SB cards seemed very impactful, although Harsh Mentor would have done work against my matchups if I had it.

    Mogg Fanatic vs. Fanatical Firebrand is still up in the air for me.
    Cavern of Souls was obviously useless in these matchups, but it has performed well on Cockatrice. It did almost cost me M3G1, and would have prevented my triple burn play in M3G2. I'll probably keep it in for now.
    Ramunap Ruins has actually won me a game on Cockatrice where my opponent was at 2 life and had counters in hand. And so far I have dealt 0 damage to myself with it. I plan on testing 1 when I buy it.

    Speaking of cockatrice testing, I have gone undefeated in my 10+ matches. I know Cockatrice is not great testing, but it does show that this deck is consistent and can run over bad opponents and fringe decks.

    I'm excited to keep swarming people, especially now that they'll be trying to play 4 drops like Jace and BBE!

    Edit: I'm sure I got some of the details from the games wrong, so sorry about that!

    Also, I wanted to add that although my Tron opponents had mulligan issues, they still got turn 3-4 tron + haymaker in every game. And both agreed that mulligans are not what lost them the game, but rather not finding the best haymaker (Wurmcoil or T4 O-stone/Ugin) or an early sweeper.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    Your list is much "larger" than most of the lists on here. You effectively have 10 two drops, 9 three drops, and 2 four drops. With only 19 lands I think you'll frequently run into problems casting all of your spells.

    Also, there seems to be two ways to build goblins. In your deck, you hope that your powerful goblins survive and take over the game. The problem with that strategy is that 1. Other decks are inherently more powerful at higher cmc (Ravager > Mogg war Marshall, K Command > Chieftain, CoCo > Krenko), and 2. There are so many efficient answers to creatures in this format (path, push, bolt) that your opponents actually gain tempo by killing your threats. If your opponent out values and out tempos you, you'll have a very hard time.

    To get around this, many people choose to build a low to the ground, or "no lord" style of goblins. You accept the fact that your opponents will have removal, so you don't run many threats above 1cmc. That way, when they bolt your Goblin Guide, you are still tempo neutral, and you likely already did some damage. This deck is still able to swarm around targeted removal, but is weaker to sweepers and large blockers, and it relies on burn to finish off the opponent. You'll find some example lists earlier in this thread. Good luck!
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    My issue with Leyline of Punishment is that it would never feel right to mulligan for it. 60% of the time (actually more, since I believe you only run 3) it will not be in your opening hand, and if you draw it, it's almost completely dead. This is where I need more experience, but would something like Skullcrack be a suitable replacement? It hits for 3, it's not useless when you draw it, it can help punch through pro red creatures, and it can stop 1 time life gain effects. Against things like Soul sisters I already have Forked Bolt and Grim Lavamancer.

    Eidolon is a card I should really test out. I don't own any currently but I can definitely see how it would be good against control and combo!

    How do you feel about Goblin Fireslinger or Frenzied Goblin in the SB as ways to get around blockers while not reducing the goblin density of the deck?
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    RE: Jayjayhooks and sideboarding

    I think what it comes down to is that I need more experience with the format and specifically our bad matchups. When it comes to our bad matchups, why are they bad? Why do we lose? What cards can be sideboarded to improve that problem? I like your example, should you side in grave hate vs. dredge, or side in Piledrivers and go for maximum speed? Hopefully someone will be able to chime in with some advice!

    RE: MrCojonudo and lands

    I agree that adding 1-off lands doesn't make a huge difference one way or another. I like to think of it in terms of worst case scenarios.
    Ramunap Ruins: Worst case scenario is that this is one of your only early land drops, and you are forced to either ping yourself for 1-3 damage or wait to cast your spells. The trade off is that IF the game goes long or you flood out, you have an additional uncounterable source of damage attached to your lands for free. I look forward to testing this.

    Cavern of Souls: Worst case scenario is that this is one of your only early land drops, and you are forced to hold off on casting your burn spells (which you would likely do anyways). If you have Cavern + any other land, the only thing you are unable to cast is 2 burn spells on the same turn. The math changes slightly post SB, but in my SB every spell I bring in has at least 1 colorless that can be paid for by Cavern (except 2 Forked Bolt and 1 Grim Lavamancer). The trade off is that you get uncounterable goblins which can be very relevant depending on the matchup.

    Teetering Peaks: Worst case scenario is that this is one of your only early land drops, and you are forced to delay development by a whole turn! This is the most significant downside of the 3 lands described so far. The upside of getting +2/+0 for a turn is nice, but I'd have to test it to see if it's worth it.

    Thanks for the replies!
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    You're right, Mogg War Marshal definitely helps the go-wide strategy and has some nice synergy with FSD, Piledriver, and the Bushwhackers. It just feels like such a slow card compared to the rest of the deck!

    The problem with Devastating Summons is you really never want 2. Even getting 1 in hand too early is problematic if you only have 1 or 2 lands.
    Don't forget that you can sacrifice 0 lands and pump your FSD by +2/+0!
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    Quote from Midn8Walker »
    Can someone give me a tl;dr about the discussion of MrCojonudo and Jayahooks or tell me if it's worth the time?

    Probably not worth it. It started off with some very friendly discussion about the basics of Goblins and their sideboard options. Then it became more of an "agree to disagree" moment, and it's over now.

    I'm getting back into Modern and I have my first tournament next week. I plan on running this list, and I could use some advice!

    This deck is a "no lords" (unless you count Piledriver) 8-whack list that tries to race as fast as possible. There are a few cards that stand out:
    - 1 Cavern of Souls. Worst case, it is my only land and I would have lost anyways if it was a Mountain (or I draw more lands and play the game as normal). Best case, I get around a few counters or Chalice.
    - 1 Ramunap Ruins. I want to test this. I don't have high hopes it will ever be relevant but I want to see for myself.
    - 1 Devastating Summons. I love this card with the 8 bushwhackers. It provides a huge surprise damage potential. It's flood insurance. I don't feel bad playing it turn 1 or 2 if I have 3+ lands already.
    - 2 Piledriver, 0 Chieftain. This deck does not have many "finishers", and that makes me a little worried. I want to stick to the plan of beating, bushwhacking, and burning.
    - 4 Mogg War Marshal. I see this card in almost every goblin list. I know it is good. I just wonder if it's really as good as it always has been, or if we're blindly throwing it into our lists out of habit. Thoughts?

    About the sideboard, since I don't have much experience with today's metagame this is mostly based on what I've seen posted here. One thing I don't like is how many non goblins are in the SB. I feel like boarding in too many spells for goblins will throw off the balance.
    - 1 Genesis Chamber. Is this really the best answer for the control matchup?
    - 1 Grim Lavamancer, 2 Forked Bolt. I wanted more creatures in the SB so I swapped the 3rd Forked Bolt for a Lavamancer.
    - 2 Molten Rain, 0 Blood Moon. Against control and Tron I think this deck only needs 1-2 extra turns to punch in the last bit of damage. Molten Rain seems to do this better than Blood Moon by dealing 2 damage, and putting them behind on mana, not just on colors.
    - 1 Goblin Piledriver. What matchups is Piledriver best in? When should I be siding him in?

    Thanks! I know I had a lot of questions, but I'm hoping to start some good discussion.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Breya: Doomsday Artificer
    This deck looks awesome. I've been thinking about building a finely tuned competitive EDH combo deck and right now I'm leaning towards this one. I've been comparing all of the various Doomsday/AN combo decks out there. What would you say are the biggest advantages to playing this Breya deck over something like Zur or Thrasios?

    Also, for the deck itself, have you considered adding Gush and/or Chromatic Sphere to cantrip and help your Doomsday piles? I don't have much experience with Doomsday myself, but from what I've read, Gush enables some very mana-efficient piles with LED and Yawgmoth's Will. Chromatic Sphere/Star are less exciting but they help you cantrip into your DD pile while fixing your mana. And, they happen to form a little draw engine with Salvagers if you're really desperate!

    What do you think about these budget substitutes if I were to buy into this deck?
    Mana Drain -> Counterspell
    Pact of Negation -> Negate
    Imperial Seal -> Dark Petition
    Dark Confidant -> Gush
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    I've been testing out Zinamogg's list and Devastating Summons has been over-performing for me. I might try bumping it up to 2 copies in the MD. I find that it is a great T3 play with a bushwhacker, and it's one of the best late game topdecks, as it is one of our only cards that scales up the later the game goes on. Also, with 19 basic lands, it helps when you flood out.

    The mana curve is something I still need to get used to. With 4x MWM, 4x Piledriver, and 8 Bushwhackers, our 1-drops are very precious. I dislike boarding into too many high CMC cards, and I've been looking for lower CMC replacements. I like Tormod's Crypt, but I might try to use Surgical Extractions instead (or in addition). I like Smash to Smithereens as our artifact hate solely because of the 3 damage. Everlasting Torment is rough to cast at 3cmc but it is very effective. I might try out Gutshot as a way to cheaply deal with potential blockers, but Forked Bolt might just be better.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    Zinamogg what is your current list?

    Congrats on the wins everyone! I'm glad goblins is proving itself in the new meta
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    I'm still running a variant of Jwelt's Goblin Surge list. This is the current iteration:

    I agree with a few of your comments about the lack of Mogg Fanatic. I do really miss the interaction, but I can't find a way to fit him into this build.

    Another issue that I've been thinking about is the decks mana base. I looked at the results of Medrage's awesome calculations, and am currently running 14 lands (9 of which are fetches) + 4 SSG based on his findings. However, after some practice with the deck, I'm wondering if we really need the 4 SSG and the advantages it provides. Zinamogg just posted a nice list with 8 lands + 8 fetches and 0 SSG, and praised the decks mana consistency. I'll try to outline the benefits of running SSG vs more lands:

    14 lands + 4 SSG
    SSG provides burst mana. This allows turn one 2-drops (notably Piledriver in other builds), dropping multiple one drops, and most importantly IMO, lets you play Blood Moon before your opponent can fetch basics. In the build I posted about, I don't find myself needing the burst mana on turns 1-2 that often because my 2-drops are Bushwhackers, which are better the later they are played.
    SSG helps when you flood out. I have found myself casting SSG more times than I care to admit, and it HAS won me games before. If those SSGs were more lands, I would have lost.
    SSG can provide "surprise" mana. This is a corner case, but might be relevant when you're casting Bolt or Atarka's as a combat trick, or when paying for Spell Pierce/Mana Leak.

    Not running SSG:
    **Biggest perk to not running SSG in my opinion is the decrease in 0 land opening hands. With 14 lands + 4 SSG, you will draw a 0 land hand 13.9% of the time. With 18 lands that percentage is just 7%. Half as much!! Seeing a hand with 1 land, 1 SSG, and multiple drops is also tempting to play, but probably incorrect.
    Much more consistent mana. I have lost games because I kept a hand with 1 land and 1 SSG and just couldn't deploy my threats fast enough. Aside from "burst" situations, I almost always would rather have a land.
    With no SSGs you might be able to drop 1 land and play 17.

    I can't draw any conclusions yet, but I think I'm going to start testing other combinations of mana, like 15 lands + 3 SSG, 16+2, 17+1, 17+0. I have a strong feeling that in a deck like mine, where the burst potential of SSG is slightly less, that it's not worth using 4 SSG due to the inconsistency it causes.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    Another problem deck: Elves!!

    This deck can quickly get out of hand. Their creatures come down fast and are good at blocking ours. If they stick an Archdruid it's really hard to get past them. And Collected Company helps them keep swarming when we run out of gas. I've found that my best chances of winning are when I can get in some quick damage Turn 1 and 2, and finish with Goblin Grenade and Bolt.

    I'm not running any Forked Bolts in the sideboard, but I'm thinking about it. Right now I have 2 Lightning Bolts main and 2 in the side.

    I could see Dolmen Gate being ok in this matchup, but if we waste too much time deploying it, their deck can retaliate very quickly with Ezuri pumps.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    Quote from jwelt »
    I have found Dolmen Gate (suggested by MedRage) to be a good answer for blockers.

    Dolmen Gate is interesting. Does it really provide enough advantage by allowing you to attack through beefy blockers multiple times? It seems like it could work, I'm just wary about cards that don't do much on there own, especially at 2cmc. What matches do you side it in?

    By the way, your deck appears to be a card short. I imagine you forgot the singleton Devastating Summons?

    Good catch! That's right, +1 Devastating Summons. I even double counted!

    On another note, I'm not particularly impressed with Mutagenic Growth right now, especially when it competes with Lightning Bolt for a maindeck spot. Maybe I'm not using it properly, but here's how I typically play Mutagenic:
    As a "free" spell for Reckless Bushwhacker. Costing 0 here is much better than bolt's 1cmc.
    Pumping an unblocked creature. 0 mana for 2 life is a good trade, but not significantly better than bolting to the face.
    In response to an opposing bolt. There are only 3 creatures in my build that will be saved by this tactic, Guide, BTE, and Swiftspear. If you can save a creature, that's just a 1-for-1, if you can save a creature AND get the +2 power during combat, that's a win for us.
    Pumping a blocked creature to prevent it from dying. This situation seems good, but I'd rather have bolted my opponent's creature and let my creature attack through in the first place!

    Overall, the advantages to Mutagenic Growth are it's interactions with Reckless Bushwhacker, and the potential to save one of our creatures from a bolt while dealing 2 extra damage. I'm not sure if that's enough to warrant a spot in the main deck over Lightning Bolt, which is much more flexible, and provides reach when our opponent's have stabilized the board. I'd like to hear some thoughts on this Smile
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    I think that's a major perk to running fetches; they reduce our odds of getting flooded (even if it's just a few percentage points). I know the whole "thinning is mathematically insignificant" argument, but in this deck I've never lost a game because I lost the race to 20. If I lose, it's because my opponent stabilized before I could kill them, and my life total is insignificant.

    Here's a rough example. Our deck has 14 lands + 4 SSG, we're on the play and it's our turn 2, and we've seen 2 mana sources-
    If those two lands were two mountains, our next draw has 16/52 or 30.77% chance to be a mana source.
    If those two lands were fetches, our next draw has 14/50 or 28% chance to be a mana source.

    It's very insignificant either way, but I hate flooding out, so I run 4 SSG, 9 Fetches, 1 Stomping Ground, and 4 Mountains as my mana base.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    Hi everyone! First time posting in the Goblins thread, but I think this will be my new main deck now that Twin is gone.

    I've been testing out some lists I've seen in the thread and found that I don't enjoy the high variance of the T3 Fury/Chancellor list, but I prefer the no-lord style instead.

    I'm testing out Jwelt's Goblin Surge deck with a couple modifications:

    The goldfishing you guys have done is seriously impressive. I've been playing the deck on Cockatrice and it really is quick. Dumping my hand on turn 1-2 is so satisfying. Winning on turn 3 on the play when your opponent went T1 Ancient Stirrings -> Kozilek's Return? Ahh, that's why I love goblins. This deck has won on turn 3 through each of the following scenarios: double Lightning Bolt, Remand, Mana Leak (Zinamogg, I'm not sure Defense Grid is necessary because counters are already so weak against us), Spellskite... it can be seriously quick.

    However, there are a few common patterns to my losses, and I'm going to try and sum them up to try and find a way to improve.

    Heavy discard, especially when I'm on the draw:
    Often times my hand has a bunch of junk and 1-3 payoff spells. If these get taken away, we are very crippled.

    Wasteland Strangler:
    This card is a beating. Always a 2-for-1 and it comes down as early as turn 2 for them.

    Bolt Snap-Bolt:
    This is an easy 3-for-2 for our opponent and it comes down fast, similar to Wasteland Strangler.

    Wall of Omens/Wall of Roots/Spellskite, early Tasigur/Gurmag:
    When my opponent gets down early blockers, it really slows us down. Sometimes you can go wide of the walls, but when you lose an attacker to Tasigur/Gurmag each time you swing, you really are in a tight spot.

    Board Wipes:
    Usually the only wipes that are fast enough are Pyroclasm, Kozilek's Return, Drown in Sorrow. If you get hit with one, it's hard to recover, especially because our payoff spells get better with more creatures in play.

    Stumbling to my own sequencing:
    This will likely improve with practice, but I've found that it's not always easy to choose the right order to cast our spells. Often times you have to trade off pumping Swiftspear vs. holding a spell back for Surge next turn. Or, do I use my Bushwhacker now, or play out all my guys to get max value from it next turn? The answers are not always clear.

    Other thoughts on the deck-
    I really like the 1 Devastating Summons. It's great flood insurance and combos very well with a Bushwhacker. I often sac all my lands and pray it's enough to close out the game (it always has been so far).

    Having green in the deck is not a negligible cost. I often get tripped up using the RG from BTE, and knowing when to use manamorphose to get RG instead of RR is tough.

    I like the idea behind the switch from Probe + FSD to Bolt + Mutagenic Growth. I don't think the full 8-for-8 trade is correct, but I think I'll start messing around with those numbers and see what works.

    Sideboarding is very unfamiliar to me with this deck. It's not always straight forward. When cutting cards I usually try to cut down the same ratios. For example, +3 Blood Moon, -1 Manamorphose, -1 Reckless Bushwhacker, -1 Burning-Tree Emissary.

    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Yasova, Landstalker
    I think the primary engine for this deck is Life from the Loam, and that card plays so well with cycling lands! Since you're not using Blue mana much, you could probably remove a combination of 2 islands, Polluted Delta, or Flooded Strand for 3-4 cycling lands
    Posted in: Variant Commander
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