Quote from SadisticMystic »Jungle Patrol is out of order there (no green mana yet). Tinder Wall into Ranger of Eos fixes it at a cost of one card; I had a plan that could keep stage 5 at the same number of cards by building around Sanctum Plowbeast, but it required stage 2 to be reformulated and use up the extra card anyway, and then it still failed because stage 3 kicks off with Norritt instead of a mana producer.
If Rite of Passage, Gruul Ragebeast, and the whole structure of fighting isn't going to be there, Phelddagrif might as well change to Abyssal Persecutor now to avoid having to pay ever-increasing amounts of white mana to keep the opponent alive.
Another candidate for the use of a card slot, now that we don't run any cards like Empress Galina which break if the original copy ever gets haste, is changing Minion Reflector into Dual Nature + Madrush Cyclops. Then we don't have to keep paying 2, especially at the enchantment-bounce level where replaying the cards doesn't get back anything, and at the start where there's not as much structure. Being able to get more than the one MR trigger on everything is also nice.
Ghostly Touch is essentially a duplicate Gilder Bairn, but what about the Hero of Bladehold I had it paired with? Five-Alarm Fire only triggers when a creature gets through, and normally that's limited to what we attack with. Hero is nice because it creates additional attackers, with opportunities to interleave more things between each trigger. Ultimately it's 5AFs times attacking creatures, and as long as something can make more 5AFs in the mean time (which Gilder Bairn does through a very circuitous route), this is just x^2 and not worth the slot. Never mind.
Speaking of Gilder Bairn, something that might lead to a productive outcome is if we had some limited way to regenerate it (this incidentally forbids anything that would allow it to turn black, since Horror of Horrors would then be able to regenerate it without limit). That neatly accompishes the goal of tapping it, and 5AF could burn it to invoke the shield followed by Bairn pumping the counters on 5AF, as long as there were spare regeneration shields available. The most promising choice here is the localized Soul Channeling, and then...Righteous Cause is just like half a Gilder Bairn, which isn't very useful as a card. Wingmate Roc, probably not much better (although it does make each subsequent trigger more powerful alongside Hero of Bladehold). Looking in another direction for the time being, maybe if there were something like Myr Battlesphere that wasn't restricted to tapping Myr, that would usefully get more and more Bairns each time.
If combat-related triggers are what we're looking for, then for once it looks somewhat hopeful they might create some useful cards in this space, right?
Quote from SadisticMystic »Okay, so if Riven Turnbull doesn't fight anything, it just makes a single black mana for each Bloodbond March--not very saturated, but that's still a lot of Bloodbond Marches.
Djinn Illuminatus got dropped from the deck somehow; it (or something like Pyromancer Ascension + a second Allay) is needed if for no other reason than to get one final burst out of World at War. With that in place, it also means Crippling Fatigue is slightly better than changing that slot to Unspeakable Symbol, despite taking a modicum more work to put back in place each time.
As far as cards that sacrifice Mountains, there's Lava Dart, which isn't much different than tapping it for mana. There's also Glacial Crevasses that even care about the fact it's a snow Mountain, but yeah...no.
For the last couple slots...Ghostly Touch on Hero of Bladehold? Might that do something in the declare attackers step each time, bumping up the number of triggers that Five-Alarm Fire gets a couple steps later? The Ghostly Touch triggers could untap the snow-covered mountain, or better yet tap a Gilder Bairn. It's not like there's much else in the way of safe space at this point.
Quote from SadisticMystic »That nicely completes the set of basic lands. We can't exactly add a step for Ghost-Lit Redeemer because it can use its regular tap ability, so that's full saturation.
With regular cycling now on board, Chaos Warp is going to have to drop to Show and Tell again. Wheel of Fortune is also unsafe since we can put the opponent's cards back, but changing Reito Lantern to Soldevi Digger should fix that right up.
Cateran Overlord doesn't appear to serve any purpose here except as a sacrifice outlet, in which case it and Whetstone can fuse slots into Altar of Dementia. In the free slot, if Grip of Chaos goes back in and Rimescale Dragon becomes the snowball fighter, does that tick the last number in the chain up to 8?
Phelddagrif appears to serve the "make sure opponent survives combat" role. It can also serve the "give the opponent a creature" role, which might allow Measure of Wickedness to go, but I don't think that quite works. Riven Turnbull is the lowest-level thing that needs to get a proper fight, and unlike the system where we could switch back and forth between Cowardice and Clash of Realities for a small expenditure that could all be handled at the Allay level, we have no way to put Gruul Ragebeast back in hiding until it gets up to Paragon of Fierce Defiance. Even if it did work, the slot would need to go back to Indestructibility so that the lone 1/1 Hippo token has some safety from all the forces that are gunning for it.
Right now we have no way to bounce artifacts, and in fact no way to sacrifice artifacts. This might leave room for Coldsteel Heart to make snow mana at the top, but can we do anything with that? Merfolk Skyscout could do just as well if it's untapping a snow-covered mountain; Krond the Dawn-Clad is inferior still because of no duplicates and because a spare Riftsweeper has to be used up to get the card back.
Quote from SadisticMystic »Even if March of the Machines doesn't cost any layers directly, you're also cutting Sinking Feeling in order to make Break Through the Line behave, and that costs some layers (all of them?) on Elite Arcanist. Indeed, with that card gone, Rite of Passage and the whole fight setup don't accomplish a whole lot.
Quote from Magicman657 »
Damnit! Guess I'll have to revise the deck somehow. With just 1 Chain Reaction and no Boros Charm that should fix it (just play another card that doubles creatures). I think the Charm was leftover from a draft where I had 4 Chain Reactions before realizing that the first one would be lethal. Turns out that wouldn't work anyway
As for an alternate plan, maybe something like 1 Flame-Kin Zealot + 1 Craterhoof Behemoth + 4 Overwhelming Stampede?
Quote from SadisticMystic »On second glance at the triple "arrow iteration" deck, the Moggcatcher substitution won't do after all, because it's red: the perils of having to cut off so much space so early.
Looking into it further, Canal Dredger doesn't look safe either. Nothing in the artifact/enchantment block can be allowed to get Bloodbond March triggers, or we could discard that a few times for more black mana, at a lower level than Devout Chaplain. Even more problematic is Sleeper Agent, which can be bounced from any arriving creature and then discarded again.
Is the Dredger/Reito Lantern function actually something we need at all? I don't see any obstacles in setup that require cards to get stuck in the grave, and once we get all the structure, anything that dies as a creature can go onto a Mimic Vat and be tucked back into the library from there. Any nonpermanent cards can be returned by Archaeomancer (although I'm not sure that will be able to stay in the deck after the Sleeper Agent revision--if it can, Wandering Mage fits over Ghosthelm Courier since we have no higher Clerics and no source of lifegain), and that leaves Elspeth who only has the one cameo responsibility early on and won't be going to the graveyard in any case.
Quote from SadisticMystic »
A few things:
Devout Lightcaster can't go into that as it stands. After we activate Possessed Nomad, it's possible to manipulate the graveyard size by various means to put it back under 7, and at that point Nomad reverts to a white creature so its ability can be bounced around to slap Devout Lightcaster. Amazingly, they haven't given us a good, clean innate black card to fit that shape, and it's not the kind of card they same likely to print in the future, so tough luck there. Phyrexian Bloodstock could possibly do something, except that's wasting a "low" step on a card slot that's better off high.
Likewise, Reito Lantern isn't safe either. Show and Tell is being counted on for the excess land drops, and that invites the goldfish to play their own lands. Then Frontier Siege lets us fight those to kill, and if Reito Lantern can put those cards back into the deck, Words of Wisdom ceases to be limited by anything. Canal Dredger (what, haven't you ever wanted to use THAT card?) might serve as a way to get around this, assuming the tap cost and required haste isn't too onerous at such a low level.
How does anything take advantage of Bloodbond March now? Cephalid Shrine seems to have disappeared, as have all other sources of counterspells.
Did you calculate Everbark Shaman with some lost layers now that it's the only treefolk in the deck? The physical card will have to go back to the graveyard for each activation, so it can't be standing pat on a single Mimic Vat copy while that runs down to do its thing.
Instead of linking Goblin Burrows-Tidal Warrior-Seahunter, we could use Moggcatcher for the transition by itself. That frees up Empress Galina to slot into the appropriate point, and the generic land step could go elsewhere--if nothing else, as a basic plains below Dream Thrush. Better yet, if we want to do that, something like Embodiment of Spring is better than Dream Thrush, since the land gets the Mimic Vat layers that way, more than offsetting the loss of the target-redirection layers. Or even Plains (with Vat)-Terminal Moraine (without Vat)-Dream Thrush.
And why is it still Mana Crypt, source of constant babysitting? The two Spirit Guides mean we have enough starting leeway to go with the more cooperative Thran Dynamo as the sole colorless mana generator.
Quote from Vertain »I just noticed my previous list has only 56 cards. That aside, this challenge is remarkably entertaining. My list has evolved another step: