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  • posted a message on Modern Esper Draw-Go
    I would only take out Cryptics against Burn.
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on UW Control
    I agree that the styles category is pretty meaningless.

    Technically “applicable against combo” is not the same as flash, it just so happens that flash creatures are the only ones that sufficiently do the work, and some semi cheap threats like Gideon OTT or kitchen Finks that may or may not get there. This is also a huge draw to cards like Tasigur in control decks (obviously the wrong color).

    Glittering Wish is of course not in the right colors, but I’ve listed it here, because it’s kind of surprising how much potential this card actually has. The wishlist would certainly contain 1 Sigarda Host of Herons, 1 Kitchen Finks and possibly even a Dragonlord Dromoka. That being said Glittering Wish for Sigarda looks like an actual win-con to me.

    Btw, I'm picturing the following wishlist:
    1 Sigarda, Host of Herons
    1 Kitchen Finks
    1 Dragonlord Dromoka/second Kitchen Finks
    1 Fracturing Gust
    1 Supreme Verdict
    1 Meddling Mage
    1 Wheel of Sun and Moon

    The characteristics kind of fit to certain matchups, more or less. I generalized, because the metagame is too wide.

    For example “turning the corner against hyper aggressive decks” could also be named “win-con against Burn and Merfolk and such as”. I think this makes sense, because Burn, Merfolk,… actually require a dedicated win-con whereas a deck like Infect and Affinity don’t (Colonnades do the work). The problem with Burn, Merfolk,… is that they have the means to push the last points of damage through, they are very hard to get full control of thanks to cards like Burn, Manlands, Aether Vial, Haste, Trample, Cavern…

    “Applicable against combo” is essentially directed against Storm, every matchup where tapping out is a risk. Again, another group of matchups where the win-con is key.

    “Resistance to removal” is essentially the trait to win against Jund, Grixis Control and such as, which is why I gave Batterskull a semi fail, and kitchen Finks is a dog to Tarmogoyf and Tasigur.

    So yeah, referencing the actual matchups should lighten up some of my reasoning.

    With the last category (ability to overpower other decks) I tried to measure/visualize a card’s potential for inevitability. Essentially inevitability is constituted by both power-level and resistance to removal/disruption.

    I’m not convinced of most Planeswalker’s powerlevel in Modern (Gideon of all kinds, Teferi, etc.), simply because they need the help of your deck to get there. Whereas, if I drop a Wurmcoil Engine, some decks just fold to it and Wurmcoil does this to numerous decks whereas Gideon Jura pretty much always needs help from your removal.

    I totally agree that a lot of matchups aren’t about the win-cons, but others are, namely:
    Burn, Merfolk, Eldrazi Tron (where turning the corner is key)
    Grixis Control, any control matchup (inevitability)
    Storm, combo in general
    Jund, Hollow One midrange in general – the win con can make a difference, even though it’s not essential.

    Jace has been disappointing to me actually, so maybe I'm a little bit biased. In fact running Jace has showcased to me again how valuable flash/instant speed is. I've recently played against a Grixis control player (who of course crushed me with his own Jace). I had Jace in my hand, but never dared to play it out, because I knew he had a Lightning Bolt, and tapping out would have opened up the window for him to resolve his own Jace. So the whole thing resulted in a long draw go game, that he won, because of Thought Scour and Kolaghan's Command and Serum Visions being a sorcery has also been a huge hindrance on my side, because I couldn't EOT flash it back with SCM.
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on UW Control
    I've compiled a list where I tried to compare the various win-cons that we have at our disposal according to four characteristics. I have a personal preference for Aetherling (awesome finisher, that I recently discovered for Modern), Batterskull, Torrential Gearhulk and Elspeth, Sun's Champion, so they come first on the list. Tell me your thoughts on the characteristics (are they appropriate for evaluation?) and whether my evaluation is spot on or garbage. This is essentially how I came to the conclusion that a card like Teferi is only mediocre, yet so many players have started to put him into their decks, which baffles me.
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on UW Control
    or you just play Elspeth, Sun's Champion.
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on UW Control
    Concerning removal spells instant speed is invaluable. If it's sorcery speed there has to be a massive upside like being permanent removal or a Wrath effect. Condemn >>>>> Oust by a mile.
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on Jeskai Control
    You don't even have make sacrifices to hyperaggressive strategies if you are willed to play cards like condemn (see soorani's latest list). Condemn is great and underplayed. But you're losing the ability to burn down Jace and Lilly and turning the corner quickly.
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on UW Control
    I definitely go down on the Knots, maybe 3, because the alternatives are weak (Leak and Negate). I hate Mana Leak, too, but I'm pretty confident that it's better than Negate.

    Gideon, Ally of Zendikar is another 4cc spell, I hope that is not the solution to combat Jace; and Gideon of the Trial is just a dog to PtE. The best way to fight Jace in U/W colors are 2cc counterspells (Logic Knot, Mana Leak, Negate), Vendilion Clique, Detention Sphere, Snap beats, and Cryptics. That's it. Sad, but true. But I don't think Jeskai is better, either. They have a fragile manabase, less Field of Ruins, less countermagic to preemptively stop Jace (they have to cut something to play these Bolts). Pick your poison, I guess. But this is essentially the mirror, it's not that this problem is one-sided.
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on UW Control
    Jace is two turns faster than Search when in top deck mode. The same logic applies to Cryptic Command. You get immediate value out of the card, and that's huge when being under pressure. Also, I have the feeling that people use Jace's Brainstorm ability not enough. The play "Jace, BS, he dies" is actually pretty good, not amazing, but still above average (I reiterate: above average!!); but if you Jace, fate seal and it dies anyway, yeah, that's just a wasted Jace TMS, and it happens quite frequently in a Lightning Bolt, Bloodbraid Elf, Reality Smasher metagame. Fatesealing in the dark in account of Lightning Bolt (and nothing else) is an overly risky play.

    This is where I'm right now:



    Looks unconventional, but I'm just throwing this out here, because I want to hear what you think about it, feel free to tear it apart, haha.

    A few comments on card choices:
    I think weak cantrips like Wall of Omens, Spreading Seas, Remand, and Shadow of Doubt are complete garbage compared to "real" cantrips like Anticipate, Serum Visions and Opt. These cards are actually getting there, there is no durdling around.

    8 Fetchlands is the norm for every 3 color deck, yet people refuse to play more than 4 Fetchlands in U/W control. With Jace TMS AND Logic Knot involved (maybe I should only run 3 Logic Knots, 4 is really pushing it), I see absolutely no reason to run less than 8. You can get Burn to above 50% very easily actually. Maybe the matchup is close, but you are in no way an underdog.

    Two of the best cards I decided to omit for the time being are probably Spell Snare and Detention Sphere. The price for running Detention Sphere is - of course - that we would have to make cuts in the permission/disruption department. I think this is not necessarily where we want to be. If there is a problematic permanent that we need to get rid of (like Jace, Blood Moon, Chalice, Lilliana) there is still the gamble that get there with the means that we have available in the main like Vendilion Clique, Cryptics, and generic counterspells. I think it's wiser to shore this weakness up with an appropriate SB.

    Spell Snare, I think, is highly dependent on the metagame. If Storm and Burn rises to the top again, then I'm definitely making the switch, but as long as Bloodbraid Elf and Jace decks are the top tier decks, I stick to two mana counterspells and a high cantrip count (six instead of just four)

    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on Jeskai Control
    Vendilion Clique is insanely good in a Jace TMS environment.
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on Which Jace, the Mind Sculptor shell is the most powerful?
    UR Kiki wtf?
    Should be UR Blood Moon. Just think about it. Blood Moon turn 3, Jace bounce turn 4. Lock complete. I think it's either straight U/W control or U/R Blood Moon. Or at least some kind of two color combination. U/B with IoK and Fatal Push sounds awesome, too.

    Btw, is Jund with Blue supposed to be a 4 color deck or just Sultai?
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on UW Control
    To ensure double blue on turn two only 2 Plains I think. I like to run 2-3 Scalding Tarns depending on how many Logic Knots I have in my deck, 1-3 Glacial Fortress, and 2 Hallowed Fountain. Something along these lines.

    I actually consider giving up the long term mana denial plan, hence cutting the Spreading Seas and fitting in a couple of Shadow of Doubts. The fact that Shadow of Doubt crushes Gifts Ungiven is just so juicy. Or I just find room for both of them somehow.

    Turn one Blue mana for Opt is not very important, at least not as important as it is for Spell Snare.

    Thrun, the Last Troll
    -> Elspeth, Sun's Champion, Wurmcoil Engine, Torrential Gearhulk, Wrath of God
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on UW Control
    Quote from jayjayhooks »
    Here's what I've been looking at, still subject to a lot of testing.



    I feel like with the added cantrips and Search actually being land in the mid-late game, that dropping to 24 lands was fine. The mana base might need some tuning, still not really sure on the Field of Ruins. It incentivizes me to run 1 more basic than I want to, might cut an island for the 4th Glacial Fortress again or potentially 2nd Hallowed Fountain (fountain could be important to prioritize fetching to still have targets for ruin).

    Maybe it was you Slowgod, but someone on the FB group mentioned that they are using Shadow of Doubt as a Pseudo spreading seas in the list, and I liked that, especially in conjuction with Ruin. Ruin seems enough stronger than Tec Edge or GQ in the Tron Matchups that I felt like I could hedge a little by dropping to 3 Seas, then after I read that on the FB I'm thinking 2 Seas/ 1 Doubt in the main and maybe a Seas in the sideboard might be fine. Doubt is a lot better in the Shift/Storm matches which have been traditionally harder than the Tron variants, at least for me. My only big issue is that I might be hedging too much against the big mana decks because they always seemed so easy but that might have been in part due to Mana Leak. If you notice, I cut all non-1cmc counters (and cryptic) from the deck because I feel like this deck just has amazing late game and I really want to get there. The early turns it will be tough to find 2 mana to hold up.

    TLDR: Field of Ruin is a very hard card to evaluate and I think it could potentially shift the focus of the deck a lot if it turns out to be good.

    Edit** Gideon AOZ hasn't been amazing, might switch it back to the 3rd Trials.


    As for the mana base, the Annihilator and myself seem to have arrived at the pretty much the same manabase. I just added another Fetchland to better support Logic Knot, and the Ghoster Quarters are just placeholders at that point for whatever Wasteland one prefer. I think you definitely want the second Hallowed Fountain, because if you open with it in your starting hand, your Scalding Tarns suddenly cannot fetch up a white source anymore, that is important for Supreme Verdict. I see that you haven't included any Fetches beyond Flooded Strand in the list above, but I actually think you should. Glacial Fortress is great, but in an Opt build, blue mana on turn 1 is certainly an advantage.

    I don't like going down on Spreading Seas. Shadow of doubt as a replacement is interesting, but you are still down a card for mana denial. I think you need a critical amount of mana denial (=8 cards) to assure the long term advantage. Shadow of Doubt is also a potential SCM target. This could actually be the key to destroy Storm game 1
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on UW Control
    Having the option to Mana Leak / Snapcaster Mage + Opt definitely feels great. In fact, SCM + Opt is such a great combo that I'm trying out a 4 SCM, 4 Opt build.

    This is where I'm right now:



    0 Gideons may look like blasphemy, haha; I don't think this is better than a Gideon build, but I feel Snapcaster Mage and Gideon/Jace are kinda filling in the same slot, and this is at least worth trying. Smile
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on UW Control
    Just build up a wall of counterspells, make sure Gifts Ungiven and Past in Flames never resolve and put an threat into play end of turn. Luckily they can't go off at instant speed unlike Ad Nauseam.
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on UW Control
    Opt is great news. But it's hardly broken or anything. I think I start off with 2 copies. Next to 4 Serum Visions of course. I just hate that Opt is another victim of Chalice of the Void.

    EDIT: Do you think Opt is better than Serum Visions? Being an instant is huge and the scry and draw is flipped. Soorani seems to think so and I think he has convinced me.
    Posted in: Control
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