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  • posted a message on The People's Pod
    Hey Everyone,
    I am guessing most people reading here are already on Discord and so may have seen my updates. However, the below is a document that I've made, with my current decklist and a mini-sideboard guide for the top 14 match-ups and whether its favourable or not (all decks more than 2%).


    My list has been pretty steady for the last couple of weeks, with only small tweaks happening. I have been grinding the friendly leagues, and on 2 occasions went 3-2, 4-1, 5-0 (so 12-3 twice). That record has started to pay out nicely, so I took a punt on a competitive league when MODO got back up running yesterday. I went 3-2, so was indifferent payout to a friendly league, but then followed that with a 4-1, beating UW Control, Mardu Pyro, Spirits, Valakut and loosing to Grixis Shadow in Match 5. Unfortunately the deck does struggle with the faster Death Shadows hands (they landed a shadow on T1 G1 on the play), and in G2 I drew 8 lands to 4 non-lands by turn 6 (i kept a 4 spell 3 land hand and drew lands every draw step). That's not to say I would have won G2 with a good spell distribution, and definitely doesn't say I'd win Game 3, but it's dissapointing that I didn't get to try!

    Overall, I think the list is great. I will continue to work on it, but the maindeck feels very smooth. The mana works, and the toolbox creatures are all perfectly acceptable in your opener (there's very few MUs where Scooze, Spellskite, Deputy, Knight or Cratermaker are not relevant). The sideboard will continue to get updated as time goes on.

    Would love more people to test this list, because it is really quite good imo. Feel free to ask any questions.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on [Primer] Amulet Titan
    @FoodChainGoblins - thanks for that, the matches were good!

    BG Rock is pretty even. I lost 2-1 last time to this guy, and won 2-0 this time, though my online testing suggests it's maybe slightly worse than even - really will depend on the build. I have an Obstinate Baloth, Chameleon Colossus and Tireless Tracker, so they make a massive difference. Honestly, how the draws line up is pretty key. You can see Colossus in your opener and it's actually a bad thing, because it's likely to get tagged by a thoughtseize. But, if they don't have the thoughtseize, there's every chance you'll win off the back of that 1 card. It's really quite swingy and grindy, both decks can end up pretty hellbent and without much battlefield (which is where BG wants to be) but obviously we have some pretty stunning topdecks from that spot. My opponent is a really good player, and I'm pretty sure if we played 10 matches we'd win 5 each lol.

    I cut Walking Ballista in my testing online (for a primal command), and the first thing I felt was "man, I wish I had more of a toolbox". What it really meant was "I need a pact target or a t-west target in the main". About 20minutes before the event, I had MD Ballista still, because there's basically 2 spots where I really want it.
    1. Vs UW to fireball them
    2. Vs Deaths Shadow when there's a strong chance they have stub, or when they've gone low on life.

    The "clears out creatures" mode is rarely stunning, and it's "gut shot bob" mode is equally meh. Its flexibility is why people run it, but it's not really a bomb imo. Hornet Queen, on the other hand, will either be dreadful or great (in a similar way to Zacama, which I nearly ran)!!

    On the day, Hornet Queen single-handedly won the Hardened Scale match and the Spirits match, because I stole 2 game 1s that I shouldn't have, and then went to 3. Ballista wouldn't have done the same. However, had I faced UW or Grixis Shadow, I'd probably be saying something different.

    On the sideboarding front, I don't take notes but roughly...
    Against Spirits I boarded in 3 Path, 2 Dismember and 2 rec Sage. Rec Sage tagging Aether Vial is useful, but also tagging damping sphere was the main concern. However, after Game 3, I find out my opp isn't running Damping Sphere and boarded out Aether Vial! I cut my Pact of Negation (pretty rubbish vs Cavern + Aether Vial, but ALSO find out there's no cavern in her budget manabase)! I cut 3 explore, Relic, Bog & Summoners Pact, since that card isn't great vs Spell Queller. If I knew my opps list, I'd not board in Rec Sage and keep in 2 explore.

    Against BG Rock, it was something like:
    -2 Scout, -2 Amulet, -1 Cavern (the least useful utility land), -1 Titan, -1 GPact, -1 UPact
    +2 Dismember, +2 Path, +1 Tracker, +1 Chameleon, +1 Baloth, +1 Tect Edge,

    I don't want too much ramp, since they're bad topdecks, but Scout is great vs Field of Ruin and Amulet can lead to some nutty games. Azusa and Explore are better than both off the top, so the full set of those stay. Cavern for Tect Edge is kinda irrelevant, but cutting 2 scouts makes me need less T1 Green, so felt ok with that. I keep 28 lands because they do attack your mana quite a bit. Cut a titan and a pact because the early game matters, you're boarding in more threats, and it reduces the effectiveness of Surgical. U-pact is a bad topdeck and bad in your opener, so I cut that. I didn't board in the 3rd path because I don't love ramping my opp, and because i'd rather play more threats than answers.
    Posted in: Big Mana
  • posted a message on [Primer] Amulet Titan
    Copying foodchains here, got a post about a tournament!! Small 30 player event. Played this list:
    First of all, I know what you're thinking, and yes, its pretty old school! I have only tested Coalition Relic a little bit, but my gut was that it's a good card but not really something that I need. I was uncomfortable with adding more artifacts when people board in ancient grudges and co pretty agressively.
    Here's my main thing with Coalition Relic tho... do you keep a hand of lands, relic + titan? It makes a turn 4, like azusa would. But, its significantly weaker, since those extra land drops can bring a lot of power later on. In addition, it doesnt block to gain life. If the answer to that is "no, I wouldn't keep", then you are looking for a card that lines up with others. At that point, it clashes with Azusa rather than helping it. I do think the card is good, and I could be completely wrong with my assessment. But, if I don't face blood moon, i think I like explore more. Neither are good in a race (mostly) and neither are particularly powerful stand-alone cards. Explore lets me play a trinket + amulet on T3, or lets me play tracker + land in post-board games etc. It makes it easier to recover from dead scouts, but re-draws in the late game (also, an extra land drop is sometimes better than extra mana in the late game, getting extra kabira triggers etc).
    I have never loved trinket mage, but its useful. I don't REALLY want it in my opener, but it's passable with any other piece of ramp. As a result, I'm happiest when i run 1.
    I've been less and less keen on Walking Ballista for a long time, and i took the plunge and dropped it for the hornet queen. That allowed me to play a 2nd Rec Sage in the board, which was a last minute decision when i saw 3 hardened scales & 4 blood moon decks in the room.
    The event:
    Round 1 vs UW Tron - Game 1 I am on the play with an amulet/azusa/titan hand. They go PowerPlant into Map, play T2 Mine pass. I rip a 2nd amulet and kill my opp (without the 2nd amulet, I was getting in for 8 plus grabbing GQ, so the game was won either way).
    I board for G-tron, and then they lead on Colonnade! WHAAAA!
    I try my best not to tap out because i have a spell pierce in hand. On my turn 4 end step, they gifts ungiven. I gamble and let it resolve, hoping they go for unburial rites. They do, and I spell pierce the flashback. I untap, play 2 amulets and kill me opp. Pretty nutty hands, but I was ahead in both games without the 2nd amulet.
    Round 2 vs Hardened Scales - don't remember the details much. It was 1-1, and in the 3rd my opp had 2 damping sphere, 2 hardened scales, natures claim but NO threat at all. I spin my wheels for a bit, land a titan and go on to win. By the end of the game, my opp has had 8 lands in 6 turns. He checks the top of his deck and there's 4 more lands coming. Lucky! My maindeck Hornet Queen wins me game 1 FWIW.
    Round 3 vs Bant Spirits - this was quite a close game, lots of back n forth. Game 1 my hornet queen does some work after a reflector mage pings my titan back. They can't beat the swarm and I get there after a misplay (I EE for 1 in their upkeep, which was correct, but they tap their 2 hierarchs for Coco, which I should have pact of negation-ed and just forgot to check my hand)! Game 2 they go T2 Queller T3 Coco into Queller + Lord, T4 Lord Lord kill me. Game 3 goes longer, and there's a turn where I have hornet queen and the crew, 2 snakes and a plant. My hand is Summoners Pact, Path & Dismember.
    My Opp has 3 lords, queller with nothing under it, 2 Maelsoleum Wanders and 6 life. I tank for a while. I can't figure out if I want my pact to resolve or my removal, but realise I'm bating the wanderers.
    I play Pact first, pay 4 for the first wanderer, and teh 2nd counters it. I Dismember & path 2 lords and swing with the queen + 4 tokens. I work out they ahve to block queen + token and take 3 + 2 from slayers, therefore wiping their board and leaving them on 1. Great, i'm pretty sure they have no outs. However, I had 2 snakes that I didn't attack with! So i missed lethal, but it luckily didnt matter.
    Round 4 & 5 I can ID into top 8 so I do.
    Quarters vs BG Rock - I played this guy at the quarters last time and lost, hes a really nice guy though and its always fun playing against him and his deck!
    I'm on the draw and he goes fetch pass. I'm pretty sure this means he has Bob, because you don't keep a hand without discard against me unless u have the best possible t2 play. I lead on amulet, and indeed he plays bob. I start ramping and make a plant or 2, but the bob is staying in play. Eventually I land a titan, but it dies to assassin's trophy. No worries, I'd gone for t-west. Next turn, I rip a 2nd amulet and can do some tricks with bouncelands to make 2 titans and haste em. My opp has a long pause so i'm 99% sure i'm facing assassin's trophy here. So, with my titan triggers I go get bog to shrink a goyf that had got into play. My hunch is right, and my opp has given me 2 free lands. But, he kinda had to or the "other" titan woulda smacked him. He then untaps and plays a 3rd trophy on my titan. I have 8 mana to pay, but get to untap and get the 4th and get him dead!
    Game 2 I board out 2 amulets and 2 scouts. I was a bit lost on if this was right or not, but I don't love amulet here, but having the single trinket mage makes me want enough targets, and there's only 1 EE and 0 Ballista, so that was the call I made. He doesn't play discard on 1, so again I expect bob on 2 - which happens. I play turn 1 amulet. Turn 2 i rip an amulet, sigh because now I don't have trinket mage targets and it's not a great card in the MU. Then I check my hand and kill him with double-titan. Oops. I apologise to my opponent, because we've had 4 really good games in our G1 and our previous outting, but it was my turn to win (we met at the same stage and even sat in the same seats)!
    There's discussion about a split, I think "yeah why not", then realise that i've spent all day to play just 4 rounds, so decline.
    Semi Final vs Burn - my opp is a really good player, and someone i've known a long time. At 1 point, my results were so bad against him that I just thought i was destined to never beat him. Glad my game has since improved from those early days!
    Anyway, I mull to 6, accidently draw 7 and so i'm forced down to 5. Its ok, but the scout dies to a bolt and I never really have a chance.
    My sideboarding was a little sketchy. I've never registered negate before, and I knew he was on bridge + deflecting palm, so thought i best bring it in. I had it in my opener and regretted boarding it in the entire game, spell pierce would have been great and negate wasn't. Anyway, I go T1 Plant, T2 Amulet + Bounceland + Scout. He attacks with a swiftspear and revelries my amulet. T3 I make another plant, and start blanking his swifty. I draw an azusa and make some land drops, and get something like a t4 titan. I dont remember the details but there's a bridge I have to navigate, a path and a lack of threats in my hand, all while my lifetotal is getting butchered. My titan fetches kabira + twest, and i know i'll need to draw a bounceland or a threat to get going again. I find amulet then vesuva, which lets me pick up t-west, grab a titan, grab pact for rec sage (targetting bridge) and attack with a titan that was already in play. Get there!
    Game 3 goes kinda long but my opp floods out a bit. I use path on an eidolon on T2, and he has no other creatures, and the spell half of his deck is a lot less scary. Titan gets there again.
    Final vs Hardened Scales - at this point, there's £60 for 2nd or £120 for first, so we split. We don't play it out, everyone had had enough and the shop shuts after the last game. lthough £90 doesn't sound a lot, its maybe the 3rd most I've ever won, since I don't play a lot of paper magic. I also went undefeated all day, which was good.
    I ran hot today, like the T2 vs BG Rock when I was really expecting a grind-fest. I was lucky that my hardened scales opp flooded out, i was behind there. Burn and UW Tron felt pretty good though!
    As a wrap up on individual cards:
    2nd Rec Sage might have been unnecessary, but for that particular day, it was good.
    Hornet Queen main was definitely better than ballista. Didn't miss it once!
    Explore won me a game in Round 1, was decent vs BG Rock and got boarded out a lot. I was happy with it though, and still don't think it's worse than Coalition Relic. Damn my stubbornness!
    3 Path 2 Dismember was also pretty decent. I may use my store credit for an EE though, and replace the 2nd Dismember. I do feel like I should run extra cards for the trinket mage to get when I board out 2 amulets!
    Any questions, ask away Smile
    Posted in: Big Mana
  • posted a message on [Primer] Amulet Titan
    @ k0no - I think you're a fair bit off with the ballista / zacama analysis unfortunately!!!

    The issue isn't about "how easy is it to find". Generally speaking, the both fall into the camp of "at their best AFTER you resolve a titan". As a result, it's pretty irrelevant on how you get it. If you land a titan, you're using t-west to get hold of 1 of these 2 cards.

    Here's where most people lie on the situation:
    1. Zacama is at its best when you're already winning.
    2. Walking Ballista is better in your opening hand - there's a non-zero amount of games where you go T2 Ballista for 1 kill your Bob / BOP / Delver or whatever might be about.

    As a result, Ballista is seen as a removal spell with more flexibility, whereas Zacama is seen as winmore.

    However... there will always be areas where Zacama is better and vise versa. As an example, it's pretty easy to see spots where a titan gets pathed, but a follow up Zacama just takes over the game (lets say, vs spirits). Ballista in that spot might kill 1 creature, not 3. There's also the "cornercase" spot where you pick up Ballista off Stirrings, which can't happen with Zacama. Its more about power vs flexibility though, and i think Ballista is better for a consistent gameplan.

    Honestly, a lot of amulet players will tell you never to drop Ballista. I've always had a different opinion in that i think it's a very good tool to have, but it's not ground-breaking. I also like as much of my 60 to look good in my opening hand, and ballista (and zacama) don't. Ive been known to register Courser of Kruphix in Ballista's spot for this reason, but I nearly always end back up on Ballista. My point is though, that it's not crucial or irreplaceable. Play what you want Smile
    Posted in: Big Mana
  • posted a message on The People's Pod
    Wanted to do a big write-up. those of you on discord may have seen most of this!
    So, I've been playing MTGO (friendly) leagues, and my last 4 have finished 4-1, 4-1, 5-0, 5-0. Lets have a discussion! Here's the decklist:
    And here's what I played against (for interest only)!

    League 1 (4-1)
    UW Control (loss)
    Eldrazi & Taxes
    4c shadow

    League 2 (4-1)
    Elves (loss)
    UW Control
    Ad Naus

    League 3 (5-0)
    UB Mill
    mono U curiosity
    5c agro
    abzan midrange
    BG rock

    League 4 (5-0)
    Ad Nauseum
    Abzan "creatures" (Aether Vial, KotR, hatebears)
    So, I've not played the big decks lately (no pheonix, burn or grixis shadow, but did play 4c shadow and dredge).

    Anyway, there's some obvious questions about cards that I bet most of you have!!
    1. Fauna Shaman - this card looks rubbish on paper, or at best, average. It dies to everything in the format, pretty much. For me, it's replacing Eldritch Evolution. So here's a comparison. Fauna Shaman when left unchecked takes over the game (will explain more in part 2). Eldritch Evo will get your best card for you, but nothing more. When facing interaction, Fauna Shaman dies and you don't get to tutor anything. However, it trades 1-for-1 with the opp. Eldritch Evo, on the other hand, costs 2 cards to get 1. Depending on what you fetch, you can be down a card at the end of the exchange, and very rarely up on the exchange.
    The big downside to Shaman is that it's impossible to tutor up a 3-drop on turn 2 with it - against a deck like storm/tron, grabbing Eidolon / Magus of the Moon on Turn 2 can be the difference between a win and a loss.
    The other upside on Shaman is that it plays around Grafdiggers' Cage! Win!
    Having said that, the way Shaman carries a game shouldn't be overlooked... which leads me nicely onto:

    2. squee, goblin nabob - this card looks odd too. It's pretty weak by itself, though I have used it on chump duty and on "discard to lili" duty before, generally speaking this isn't a card you ever want to see without Fauna Shaman. So, why run it?
    Well - if your shaman is staying in play (which it will sometimes, even against control decks, it just may be later in the game), then you can use your first activation on the opps end-step to grab squee. Your 2nd activation now gets whatever you need - so at this point, you have turned "random creature in hand" into "best creature in deck", and put squee in the yard. That's pretty inefficient. BUT, for the rest of the time that shaman lives, you get "G, search for your best card". That's mental! You still get your draw step. I realize that 3 activation's is a lot, but if you get 3, you never lose, thanks to squee. AND, then there's the bonus of "I drew squee whilst having shaman". In that spot, 2 activations is usually enough to tie up the game.
    In short - the payoff for the deck space is massive, and its well worth the slot. Its what took shaman from bad to good in my opinion.

    3. Rhythm of the Wild - this deck makes better use of Rhythm than any other i've seen. When you only have prime speaker in your list, Rhythm can be a little hit and miss. But with 4 Shaman too, you have more pay-offs for this card. It's been pretty good, but I could see 1 being cut.

    4. Goblin Cratermaker - very few games go by where I dont search this up. It's not always the 1st card you get, but you use it way more than you expect, and it's reusable with Rallier + Witness. It's great to ahve some removal MD that you can tutor up with your 8 re-useable tutors.

    I would recommend the doubters out there to check my stream for gameplay examples (https://www.twitch.tv/daviusminimus/). A LOT of my wins can be attributed to Shaman and/or Rhythm. I hope you get inspired to try it out.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on [Primer] Amulet Titan
    @FoodChainGoblins - I dont think you need to be sad! I went to an event the other day and played my "old skool" red version, with abrade, firespout and 3 explore. I counted every time Abrade was better than path, and every time it was worse. Because of the match-up lottery that exists in Modern, I ended up with 100% of my MUs where Abrade was better (because it didn't ramp, and the 2nd mana didn't matter). Its unlikely to be like that often, but you have to remember a couple of things:
    1) the core of our deck, and indeed 56 of the 60 cards main, are all already powerful - if you add a trinket mage or a coalition relic instead of some explores, its not going to be a big difference in the majority of games
    2) you don't board in creature removal in every MU!

    As a result, you can play what you want to an extent. I still think Path is well placed, but it doesn't mean its the best card every time you play. If you are playing a GP or something like that, then sure, you want every % you can get. But if you're playing even 6-7 rounds (e.g. Modern Challenge online), I'm pretty sure you can get away with whatever you want.

    Coalition Relic is again just "well placed" right now. It fights blood moon pretty well.
    Posted in: Big Mana
  • posted a message on [Primer] Amulet Titan
    Yeah spawnofhastur is correct with everything he has said above.

    For me, I'm down to 1 trinket mage. I don't particularly like it in my opener, unless it's alongside scout/amulet, at which point, it's just a nice-to-have, not a key piece. It's nice off teh top sometimes, giving you some interaction and/or some explosiveness.

    The Path to Exiles are pretty good right now. Abrade is a lot worse without KCI, and there's not too many creature decks that care about firespout right now. That could easily change. I do still run a single dismember though, because it's significantly better than path against decks like storm and anything with bobs. Ramping people on Turn 2 isn't great. The main issue is that you can't realistically run 2+ dismembers, the life pain is rough. I could see a list with 4 golgari rot farms and dismember though. You get access to Bog for black mana too.

    I do think we're close to a known best-list right now, but the SB will change when the format does, which will dictate whether or not you want Paths or sweepers, and it's pretty easy to get the mana to incorporate that.
    Posted in: Big Mana
  • posted a message on [Primer] Amulet Titan
    @k0no - that's not something i had considered too much. The issue is that by not getting the plant, you guarentee they can kill the titan. Getting the plant forces them to have removal + lili. At the time, I applied the theory that I would have a lot of topdecks to be able to pick up the t-west, and the pay-off for blanking the lili is massive.

    The other thing to take into account is that i didn't have amulet, so it would have taken me 2 turns to recover with a t-west, which opens me up to inquisition + thoughtseize (i didnt have mana for transmute and titan in 1 go).

    I can see a scenario where it is correct to run head first into the lili, and I hadnt honestly spent long considering that. Its almost second nature to grab plant when facing rock. I'll certainly think about that more next time! I think my line was correct this time, but doesn't mean it will always be.
    Posted in: Big Mana
  • posted a message on [Primer] Amulet Titan
    Ok so I'm going to do 1 of my event reports that come around every so often! I played in a small monthly event (5 rounds to top 8 cut). First, the decklist... I was using my flex slot and my SB to try and beat Grixis Shadow, Burn and hopefully help me vs Pheonix - I didnt know what would be at the event, so just based it off MTGO meta.

    1 Bojuka Bog
    1 Boros Garrison
    1 Cavern of Souls
    3 Forest
    4 Gemstone Mine
    1 Ghost Quarter
    1 Grove of the Burnwillows
    4 Gruul Turf
    1 Khalni Garden
    1 Radiant Fountain
    4 Simic Growth Chamber
    1 Slayers' Stronghold
    1 Sunhome, Fortress of the Legion
    3 Tolaria West
    1 Vesuva

    4 Amulet of Vigor
    4 Ancient Stirrings
    1 Engineered Explosives
    3 Explore
    1 Pact of Negation
    1 Relic of Progenitus
    4 Summoner's Pact

    4 Azusa, Lost but Seeking
    4 Primeval Titan
    4 Sakura-Tribe Scout
    1 Trinket Mage
    1 Walking Ballista

    2 Abrade
    1 Chameleon Colossus
    1 Dismember
    2 Firespout
    2 Obstinate Baloth
    1 Reclamation Sage
    3 Spell Pierce
    1 Tireless Tracker
    1 Tormod's Crypt
    1 Tectonic Edge
    And here's how the games played out (from memory):

    Round 1 vs GW hatebears - I didn't see a tonne of my opponents deck, but it was a GW Coco deck. Im not sure if it was valuetown or hatebears really. Anyway, my opp had only been playing mtg for a few weeks, but he played REALLY well. A few mis-sequencing things that could have benefitted me, but ended up not mattering. I spoke to my opp during the game to point out those things, since he likely wouldn't recognise those "mistakes" otherwise (since they didnt end up mattering). Overall though, the opponent played really well.
    Anyway, Game 1 I mulled and kept a pretty medium hand, but it could make mana and had a ballista. I drew into a titan eventually, after the ballista really did some work. Their deck wasn't really capable of handling the squadron titan mode.
    Game 2 went a bit longer, but again I drew ballista and htis time also EE. I played a bit like a control deck, and they could never get going. I landed the first titan, they coco-ed and hit aven mindcensor which was inconvenient, but that's all it was. Closed it out quite comfortably from there. These sort of MUs are a nightmare for my opps deck, so that all went well.

    Round 2 vs Dredge - Didn't know I was against dredge, they kept 7 on the play, and I mulled to a bad 5. I kept 4 lands stirrings hoping to find amulet and be facing a durdly deck (1 of the lands was a boucneland, another was cavern). They lead on looting so i knew what was oging on, I went forest stirrings wiff. Turn 2 Cavern naming Merfolk having drawn a blank and scoop. The bluff is unlikely to work, but it certainly got my opponent thinking!

    Game 2 is the reverse. I keep a good 7, they mull to 5. Their mull to 5 is much better than mine last time out, but a Turn 3 azusa into turn 4 titan on the play is enough this time around.

    Game 3 I mull to 5(!!) and my opp mulls to 4(!!). Crazy really. I dont really remember how my opponents hand works out, but I go Turn 1 scout, turn 2 amulet, turn 3 titan. Having ripped the amulet and titan in consecutive turns. Luck on my side!

    Round 3 vs Jund - I don't remember a lot of the details here, the games went very long, all 3. The first was pretty funny, because neither of us could get going. I didnt draw a titan for days, and they had a turn 2 bob. However, he wasn't hitting extra threats. He just kept pushing, bolting, and k-commanding all my ramp (amulet, scout, azusas all died), but I didn't really care. They were just being played because it's all i had. He landed a lili, but then eventually I drew a titan, and started the chain. I kept sandbanging lands to bait out thoughtseizes and to throw away to k-command/lili's (which worked perfectly). Eventually, we were in a spot where my opp was down to just 2 life from bob and thoughtseizes etc, with just bob in play. I had a plant and slayers + boros in play. I play vesuva copying the plant and just pass. He now has to answer both plants and dodge bob... bob reveals assassin's trophy. Terrible game, really funny. I lose Game 2 and win Game 3, but don't remember exactly how!

    Round 4 vs Dredge - this was really funny. I was against a mate of mine, and another mate was sat next to me. I'm paired down, and we both know what we're on. My opp asks me to scoop him into the top 8, so i tell him to get lost. I said I'd take an ID if he fancied playing a win-and-in in Round 5, and explained that the MU is amulet heavy. He says no. I joke and say he can go on the play... he goes "really" and i say "if you win the dice roll". He does. I then proceed to play lose Game 1 on the draw, and its REALLY close. He keeps 1 land looting and plays looting. Discards 2 dredgers but takes a draw step... he's missing his second land, and rips it Turn 2. He then goes off, and has lethal on his turn 4. On my turn 3 though, I resolve a titan. I eat his GY and make a plant. Opp can now put me to 1, has a hand of loam, 3 lands, stinkweed (i knew all that info from his previous turns) and has shrinkhorn in play with 1 counter. He taps it and hits creeping chill for lethal. Ouch!

    I offer the ID, which we all find pretty funny.

    Game 2 is mental... i go at least 8-10 turns just using bog, bounceland and relic. I'm at least 15 cards deep but never find a titan. Eventually they piece together a kill, and I check the next 3 cards, still no threat. Wasn't to be!

    Currently 3-1-0, and can ID into the top 8, which I do.

    Quarter Finals vs BG Rock - Everyone knows what everyons playing at this point. The top 8 is 2-amuleters, Pheonix, Dredge, BG Rock, Burn, Storm and tron... a pretty good top 8 for amulet.

    I win game 1 on the back of an early relic. My opp has 2 goyfs that can never grow, and no other pressure. I resolve something like a turn 6 titan and start chaining them together for what felt like a comfortable win.

    Game 2 I don't remember particularly well, but there was a good bit of back n forth. My opp played an early bob, tracker and kalitas. I abrade both bob and tracker, and kalitas sticks. I eventually land a titan, but have to grab T-west + Khalni because I know about a lili. My opp pushes the plant and takes out the titan, and I never draw a 2nd threat.

    Game 3. A lot of back n forth again here, but this time my opp goes field of ruin on simic growth and surgicals it. Its a nice line which I didn't expect. There's a key turn where my opp completely overcommits with Bob, Goyf, Goyf and Scooze. I have trinket mage in hand which he knows about, but only 6 mana (not enough to play mage, Ee and crack it - and i know about an assassin's trophy so dont want to expose an EE). So I decide to play explore first, which finds me a relic. I decide to play that over the trinket mage, since I'll have enough mana to mage into EE next turn, and relic shrinks the goyfs and scooze all in 1 go. I'm feeling pretty good about my spot. The Bob flips a thoughtseize which is the key moment, they take trinket mage and I'm unable to recover. In this game, we go to around turn 8-10 again, and I don't find a single titan. Although I had some removal, I only ever get to play a single baloth that matters all game (don't see tracker, baloth No.2, Chameleon Colossus, titans or pacts). Its worth noting that a t-west wouldnt have been relevant because of the surgical line my opp took.

    I finish the day 3-2 with a quarterfinals loss. It was a good day out, but I'm dissapointed to lose to Dredge and BG Rock, mainly because I didn't draw a titan. In both, I was in a good spot and played fairly well. I wasn't punished for my lack of paths, and the top 8, outside of pheonix, was pretty favourable for me. The fellow amulet-er lost to burn in their quarters unfortunately.

    And finally a discussion on the card choices:

    1. I wanted to play Paths and a white manabase, but didn't have the paths. So, I went with a pretty close to stock red list (though those haven't really existed since KCI dissapeared). Anyway, I was worried about that, but never faced a situation where it mattered. I boarded in Abrade vs my R1 opp, and both BGx decks. I drew it 4 times, and on all 4 occasions the target I wanted to kill could be killed (including a T2 Goyf, a small tracker and bob). It had the upside of not ramping my opp. However, had I faced Izzet Pheonix (which won the event) or Grixis Shadow, i'd have been pretty sad about it all!

    2. In 2 of my post-board games vs Jund and BG Rock, I had Chameleon Colossus in my opener, which sucked. However, both my opps were forced to Thoughtseize it away, which let an azusa resolve. All in all, a fine exchange.

    3. The singleton Trinket Mage was again pretty decent but not ground-breaking. It ate discard spells, but rarely fetched up amulet. I'm still ok with 1 copy rather than 2.

    4. Explore kept being medium like it always is. I liked it vs Jund and BG. I still consider this card best of the rest.

    5. Spell Pierce got boarded in vs Dredge, but I only drew it once in the 4 SB games, and it was too late in the game. It tagged a Conflag for 4, but it wasn't really ground-breaking. It was, however, better than a negate. I wanted to swap 1 Pierce for a Negate before the event, and likely will when I pick 1 up (i didnt get to the store in time). However, Pierce is still great.

    Not much else to say, the decklist is fairly stock, I didn't miss white this time but probably will next time! I am still pretty happy with 28 lands, 3 explore, 1 trinket mage + 1 other as my list, and even if I go to white, I'll stick with this approach. My flex slot will depend on what I expect to see. I consider Relic, Rec Sage, & Baloth all reasonable MD inclusions in that spot.
    Posted in: Big Mana
  • posted a message on [Primer] Amulet Titan
    I know its slightly off topic, but what is the Mythic Championship? Like hows it differ from any other side events?
    Posted in: Big Mana
  • posted a message on The People's Pod
    So this is my current list:

    Few things on my list:
    1. Arbor Elf in place of Hierarch is a budget choice that I’d switch if I had the chance!
    2. Goblin Cratermaker wouldn’t make the cut but its my only out to Torpod Orb so it stays!
    3. Negate and Avalanche Rider have meant that Tron is actually a positive match-up now, so are worth their slots
    4. Relic in place of Surgical, but I think it MAY be the better option. Questionable since it’s a nonbo with Knight of the Reliquary specifically, but I do like it vs Snapcaster / search for azcanta decks, and goyf decks, and deaths shadow decks, which are all places I dont want surgical.
    5. Incubation // Incongruity is certainly in the testing phase. So far its been ok, but it does take a couple of slots. For example, I could drop 1 for a MD Tracker and then I’d have space for a Chameleon Colossus in the SB.
    6. 3rd Forest over 1st Horizon Canopy is another budget option, but until I get the Hierarch’s, I need forests for Arbor Elf.
    7. I’m not sure if I want Negate or Unified Will. Unified Will is better vs Valakut specifically, whereas Negate is slightly better vs UW where I don’t want to overcommit to the board and/or when I’m trying to recover from a wrath effect.

    Deck has been decent recently, quite happy with where it’s at. I do wish I could make space for more SB bombs. I have a small list of cards that I like and wouldn’t mind having access to, but they currently don’t make the cut:
    1. 4th path
    2. Kataki,
    3. Chameleon Colossus
    4. Gaddock Teeg
    5. Swagtusk

    End of my write-up. My results are still a little inconsistent but I’m basically playing modo for free. Varying results, but 2-3, 3-2 and 4-1 are all happening. Not yet hit a 5-0, but no real scrubbing outs either.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on [Primer] Amulet Titan
    @kOno - is GP London modern?! Urgh how to make that happen for myself!?

    I will be playing amulet if i make it to London. How much testing I do will depend how much fun I'm having with Prime Speaker Vannifar!

    If I do go, I'll test for a solid month, like 200 matches. That'll be enough hopefully!
    Posted in: Big Mana
  • posted a message on The People's Pod
    @BurstOfAnger - I'll try respond to your comments
    1. Deceiver is better than Krasis - woodland bellower is the reason to run krasis. However, if you want a combo chain that doesn't require white (renegade rallier) and doesn't need the GY to function (Sun titan can fill the Bellower role), then you have to go Bellower + Krasis. That's not to say it's the only way to go, but it's the way that some go.

    2. Rhythm of the Wild I tested for 100+ games. I think the card is stunning vs UWx, terrible vs any deck that doesn't give you time to play a 3-drop do nothing (burn, storm) and good in some other spots (like vs tron, you don't have a tonne of hatebears you can tutor up, so playing this on T2 and a Vannifar on T3 is good). It's a terrible topdeck against decks like BGx. If they care about it, they'll use a trophy to remove it AND it'll pump goyf, if you don't have any persist creatures, they'll just ignore it.

    Rhythm is a much better magic card than Torch Courier. For the most part, you just want good cards in your deck. That's why I would stay well clear of Torch Courier. Some more recent lists have run Knight of the Reliquary + hanweir battlements, since you will occasionally get to line up a fast hand with a haste land, but the rest of the time both cards are very playable. I'd recommend this over Courier.

    For everyone else - I think the best versions of these decks have cleaner mana. Field of Ruin is a real magic card, and Burn really punishes our fetch/shock manabase (and Burn is a pretty strong deck right now). As a result, the Knight of the Reliquary list is pretty nice, since it's straight GW with 4 blue cards (vannifar) and 2 red (kiki), making the mana a little cleaner. The Temur version that skimps on white and goes bellower is also successful, in part due to the ease of casting cards. I would recommend those 2 lists before any proper 4 colour decks (decks with GW + reflector mage + deputy of detention etc really stretches your mana). That's just my 2 cents at this point in time!
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on The People's Pod
    @Lectrys - I maybe haven't been fully clear. If you have 1 forest when you start to combo, you return it to hand for scryb ranger to untap. Then you re-play that forest for the turn. I can honestly say I've never been caught without it. I can see the upside to podding a 1-drop into a 2-drop that can then copy a 3 or 4 drop, that's a real upgrade on your manadork, but I just don't really see the upside in terms of comboing.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on The People's Pod
    @Lectrys - i think the "not having 2 forests" has to be pretty rare? You only need 1, because then you re-play the 2nd during the combo.
    How does the Image combo work? I assume it needs more than 1 creature to get started? I dont feel the need for image, but i haven't tested it.

    I'm having the most success with Kurusu's build (https://www.mtggoldfish.com/deck/1667455#online). I've changed the odd card (don't own hierarchs, surgicals or horizon canopy, so i'm fully budget), and changed up the SB a little bit. The list is a lot better than it looks, and I think it's a good place to start. Double-spellskite has been really nice for what it's worth.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
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