Ultimate Masters: MMI Review
 
Magic Market Index for Dec 7th, 2018
 
Magic Market Index for Nov 30th, 2018
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    It's well-trod ground, and I don't think it's worth it, no. Unlike Spirits, Merfolk have ways to generate card advantage without CoCo, and most of our juice is at the 2, not the 3.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    Yep. If you anticipate having to bounce your own creatures for value a lot, Unsummon is probably the better call. All in all, I'm not a fan of spells that only bounce creatures. Harbinger is a bit more valuable because it brings a body, and E-Truth is also more valuable because it can hit problematic permanents.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Modern Humans
    I believe you when you say that Knight is not great when not built around. Still, the fact remains that the Bant version of the deck needs a 3rd beater, preferably an evasive one. Lyev Skyknight looks a bit fragile for my taste on that front - what else is out there?
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Modern Humans
    Not surprised to see a Humans list try to go Bant, since most of the creatures are in those colors and it gives you access to quality sideboard cards. What I am surprised to see is no Knight of the Reliquary. The deck will be in the market for another beater, given it will not have access to Mantis Rider, and KotR + the fetches you have to run for a real 3c deck anyway seem like a good fit. It also gives you a nice versatility boost in that you can play tech like Bojuka Bog and Gavony Township. Without KotR, the deck seems a bit overly reliant on Champ and Lieutenant to get its damage done, and while potent, I don't think the deck will be as good at closing out games with those two alone.

    I'd also want to see both Thalias somewhere in the 75. Thalia, Guardian of Thraben is one of Humans' competitive advantages as far as I'm concerned. Maybe you have to bump her to the SB because of the presence of Collected Company in the main, but she should still be played. Bant Spirits plays her, and she's not even a Spirit. Thalia, Heretic Cathar is a bit more of a pet card, but the deck as presented is a bit light on disruption. Lastly, while I have reaped the benefits of Spell Queller many a time, I am not confident in that 75's ability to protect it. It might have worked for that league, but I'm skeptical about its long-term prospects.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    The aggro decks out there these days are pretty spell-based (Hollow One, Phoenix decks, and Dredge), so countermagic still has value. Spell Pierce has worked well because you can hold it up T1 (I've caught many a Burning Inquiry, Faithless Looting, Manamorphose, Cathartic Reunion, or Goblin Lore on either the play or the draw, and stopped my opponent cold for a turn because of it), and because it's relatively easy to sneak into a curve-out. If we had more flash creatures, Deprive would be more of a consideration. As it stands, Deprive pushes us into lines that are a bit too reactive for my taste.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    There's too much fast aggro out there for me to want to maindeck Deprive right now. I value it as a great sideboard card against combo and control, but I don't think I can bump it to the main. The aggro has pushed me to bringing Harbinger of the Tides back to the maindeck, and so far that's working out very well.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    Cryptic is certainly a powerful spell, but it doesn't play nice with Vial and devotion the way Venser does. I think Venser wins out in that comparison.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    Yeah, I've been down on Phantasmal Image in the past, but this meta has been brilliant for it. I'm up to the full 4 copies and loving it.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    Nicely done! Regarding the Relics, I usually run 3.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    That's because Vial's effect says you may put a creature onto the battlefield. Because of the may language, the Vial's controller can choose whether to use the ability after resolution.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    I don't think the Devotion is the main problem, personally. It's that casting Master on 19 lands is a pain. I've had much more consistent results with 20. I increasingly think that what I want to do with UG is to cut the Mutavaults altogether (to make the mana smooth), run 18 lands (so that the gas flows constantly), and just run cards like Shapers' Sanctuary in the sideboard to combat the removal.dec types.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    Quote from lord_darkview »
    Rothgar, I have some questions about the way your list has changed, since I've been away from both Modern and Merfolk for a bit.

    1. Why are your using Coralhelm Commander? That always seemed like a lot of mana for an easily removed creature.

    2. Are the Chalices designed to fight something specific, or are they a catch-all?

    3. Have you felt the loss of Harbinger against the various graveyard decks?

    4. Eight man-lands looks like a lot. Is this all about beating UW Control?

    5. Is Relic actually better than Cage these days?

    6. Does Tec. Edge really do enough to be worth the slots?


    That list is the MHayashi special - he's had a lot of success with it over the past year, and I bust it out whenever I'm not feeling comfortable with my own list. As you can see from my previous post, I'm off it now, but that list almost never disappoints me.

    His list is designed rather differently from "classic Merfolk" in that it's really not trying to aggro opponents out - it's trying to slow them down with Chalices, then slowly overwhelm them with Fish. Coralhelm is neat in that it's a card you can feed any excess mana to, and the Chalices keep it from getting picked off too easily. It's not a card I would run without Chalices, but with them it has a purpose. Ditto for the Faerie Conclaves.

    Harbinger is straight-up not very good right now - the "tapped creature" restriction was bugging me more every day, until I finally decided to part ways with him. There isn't a graveyard deck in Modern that I think is favored against us (one of the perks of being able to jam 3-4 Relics in a sideboard), so parting ways with it hasn't hurt overly much.

    TecEdge is a card I'm ambivalent about at the moment. I'm choosing to jam it in my 8-Seas because I'm looking to punish

    Quote from rothgar13 »
    Hi all,

    Just wanted to pop in and report that I've had some success with a list going really heavy on the land hate, as follows:



    Pretty simple stuff. Lots of land hate, lots of beef, and just enough interaction to make it all stick. If your meta is looking heavy on the BGx, Burn, and Tron, give this a spin.


    Great list. A question about the SB: why both venser, shaper savant and echoing truth? Are they useful in combination or do you side in one of them?


    I like Venser and E-Truth because there are matchups where I would side in one, but not the other. Examples where E-Truth gets the nod are decks like Storm (buzz off, Goblin tokens) and Burn (you need some kind of response to Bridge, and Venser's on the slow side while not interacting especially well with cheap burn spells), whereas Venser gets the nod against UW Control (can send a Terminus or a planeswalker back while providing a body, can be brought in off a Vial on 4, and is perhaps our most efficient way to interact with Verdict). And of course, there are many matchups (Hollow One, Humans, Spirits, Hardened Scales, Mardu Pyromancer, Shadow, Tron) in which I jam them both.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    Hi all,

    Just wanted to pop in and report that I've had some success with a list going really heavy on the land hate, as follows:



    Pretty simple stuff. Lots of land hate, lots of beef, and just enough interaction to make it all stick. If your meta is looking heavy on the BGx, Burn, and Tron, give this a spin.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    I'm currently a bit down on Harbinger - lots of decks have creatures with good enters-the-battlefield effects (and control is ascendant), so a creature bounce isn't quite what it was in previous metagames. You also have too few lands to reliably curve out, even with Copter (which I've never been a fan of in Modern).
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Merfolk
    Quote from stylejoker00 »
    Quote from rothgar13 »
    Quote from stylejoker00 »
    How's Merfolk these days? I'm getting back into Modern and trying to use them as one of my three decks. Most of them are still in the mail though, so right now I'm bringing Death & Taxes to my FNM in a hour.


    Still feels good. The recent uptick in Burn pilots is good news for the mono-U build, since it is pretty clearly favored against that deck.


    Sweet. I've played CoCo Slivers so hopefully this shouldn't be too hard of a transition. On a random note, why would someone choose Merfolk or Elves? I've heard that Elves play like an aggro-combo deck, and I've read through the very well-written and self-explanatory Merfolk primer (shoutout); I'm just curious. Taking a break from Modern kind of scrambled all my archetype and matchup knowledge. :/


    Elves is more of a "gotta go fast" aggro-combo deck that interacts minimally with the opponent. Generally, that means you'll crush decks that are slower than you and can't interact with you properly, but struggle to address sweepers or decks with ways to generate card advantage along with lots of spot removal, and will have to resort to racing combo opponents. Merfolk is much more of a role-shifting aggro-control deck, whose gameplan in any given match is dictated to some degree by the opponent. Against control and midrange, we are the clear aggressor; against aggro and combo, we are generally the control deck. What that generally results in is that your matchup profile is less polarized; most matchups are 50/50 or close, so pilot skill plays a larger role. The downside is that you rarely get one-sided wins, and that even good matchups can be lost by bad draws or bad plays.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
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