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Mar 14, 2018Mainly because of the access to a ton more quality options in legacy. Modern doesn’t have Chain Lightning, Price of Progress, Fireblast, etc. Also, meta often makes Grim Lavamancer much more valuable. Swiftspear is definitely a good card and you could run 4-of, it just depends on what sort of build you are going for. It just falls a little short of being a Core card, because the bar is higher.Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
Mar 2, 2018That’s variance. That’s magic. You can include as many as you want of a particular answer in the side. The trick is to have answers for all the likely matchups you think you need help with. We only have 15 sideboard slots. So often that means only having 1 or 2 cards for a specific matchup. If you can include cards that are good for multiple different matchups, then that helps save slots for others.Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
Mar 1, 2018Posted in: Aggro & TempoHow do you get that card in your hand to play with any kind of consistency?
You either get it or don’t. Mulligan for it if it’s super important. Otherwise, the point of a sideboard is to swap out cards which are weak in a matchup for cards that are bombs. This won’t necessarily make any difference for a particular game, but over the course of many games will have a significant effect.
An example of this is siding is out Searing Blazes for Pillars vs Storm. Blazes are more or less dead-draws, whereas Pillar is a bomb. Drawing a Pillar makes you a favourite to win, while drawing the Blaze means you’re more likely to lose. So over the course of many games, of the 10% of games were you draw the Pillar over Blaze, you are winning those games rather than losing them. That could mean improving the overall matchup by 5-10%.
Feb 27, 2018Interesting inclusion. With 24 lands and 18 mountains, the deck isn’t going to get colour screwed very often statistically. So it seems like a pretty low opportunity cost to include the Dunes. At that rate it doesn’t have to do very much to be worth including. Though, there are plenty of good X/1s to kill depending on the matchup. Bomat Courier, Syphoner, Phoenix tokens, Earthshakers, Toolcraft Exemplars, Motorists... might even snipe an Angel of Invention if you are lucky.Posted in: Proven (Standard)
Feb 26, 2018It would definitely seem that Mono Red is the more consistent version.Posted in: Proven (Standard)
Best performing list:
JOHN ROLF'S MONO-RED GRAND PRIX MEMPHIS 2018 - 10THMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards Creature (27)
4 Ahn-Crop Crasher
4 Bomat Courier
4 Earthshaker Khenra
4 Fanatical Firebrand
4 Hazoret the Fervent
3 Kari Zev, Skyship Raider
1 Pia Nalaar
3 Rekindling Phoenix
4 Lightning Strike
1 Magma Spray
3 Grasping Dunes
3 Scavenger Grounds
2 Pia Nalaar
1 Rekindling Phoenix
2 Magma Spray
2 Aethersphere Harvester
3 Chandra, Torch of Defiance
2 Dire Fleet Daredevil
1 Vance's Blasting Cannons
Interesting how he is running a full set of Phoenix main/side. Perhaps he was expecting a bunch of other red decks and figured it was better at fighting the opposing Glorybringers? Phoenix is quite good against the decks that rely on lots of spot removal too, so it might just simply be that.
Feb 24, 2018You want to splash, then splash. Though the concept is not new. People have been suggesting it in this thread for years. I can find a decklist on MTGTop8 from 2010 running a pair of Plateau.Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
However, Mono-Red accounts for 97% of successful Burn lists. As such, it still appears be the better EV choice, despite certain matchup weaknesses.
Feb 24, 2018Entomb is an interesting way to tutor up something like Loam. Nice one.Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
I initially didn’t include Gitrog because of upkeep cost, but I think you are right that it deserves a spot over Sawtooth. I’ll try him out.
Feb 23, 2018Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
Why not have a land as a commander? What’s so important about being a creature or even legendary for that matter? This deck sets out to win with one of the slowest and easily disrupted 11-card combos in Magic.
Child of Alara - Likely the best fit for the deck as it gives it access to a sweeper on demand. Given most of the deck revolves around getting lands on board and the win con is also lands, the destroying all nonland permanents is pretty good.
Progenitus - The hydra is also a great option for comander as an alternative win condition. Including a Cathedral of War allows it to 2-shot people.
Sliver Queen - A different approach to an alternate win condition. The Queen goes wide rather than big. It can also come in handy as a defensive card, churning out chump blockers.
O-Kagachi, Vengeful Kami - This commander is likely more of a deterrent than anything else, making people think twice about attacking you, otherwise risking that you blow something up of theirs.
Cromat - Old school janky option. Cromat is a weird morphing style card that can do a fair job as an alternate win con that makes good use of spare mana. Progenitus and Sliver Queen are better, but perhaps not as interesting.
Kiora's Follower - One Basic trick with Maze’s End is to activate, replay it, untap, and and then reactivate it. This is a way to accelerate the process. Follower is the most versatile of these untappers, so it makes the cut.
Riftsweeper - A major risk of running essentially an 11 card combo with no redundancy is that one of your Gates will get exiled. Riftsweeper is insurance against that possibility.
Azusa, Lost but Seeking - Best additional land per turn option for getting your gates into play ahead of schedule. Works really well with Maze’s End if you have an untapper or Amulet on board.
Krosan Restorer - One of the best untapper options. With Threshold you can untap both End as well as a couple lands needed to activate it again. She otherwise ramps you quite substantially Or accelerate the Crackling Perimeter win significantly.
Nissa, Vastwood Seer - It might seem odd to include her in a deck with only a handful of basic forests, but her Planeswalker half is a great value engine that fits well with the get lands into play plan. Playing her, fetching a forest, and then drawing a card off the planeswalker activation is good enough on its own.
Ramunap Excavator - Budget crucible. Both cards are good insurance plans against your Gates being destroyed via Strip Mines and so forth. It also plays well with Uncharted Realms.
Mina and Denn, Wildborn - Another additional land per turn card. This one has some added versatility in being able to bounce lands. This can come in handy to dodge targeted land destruction.
Oracle of Mul Daya - One of the best additional land per turn cards, that also helps dig deeper into the deck. Very good on its own, both her and Nissa, Steward of Elements get a significant boost from each other when both are present on board.
Restoration Angel - The deck needs backup plans as the Maze’s End win is relatively easy for opponents to disrupt. This card in conjunction with Kiki-Jiki gives you access to another a win-now Combo. The nice part about this plan B is that each half are great value cards on their own, since the deck has many ETB creatures. Notably Riftsweeper, on the off chance multiple Gates get exiled.
Stone-Seeder Hierophant - The best untapper. It is likely this deck’s unobvious must kill. In conjunction with additional land per turn cards, Hierophant can enable wins from multiple Maze’s End activations from seemingly out of nowhere.
Cloudblazer - Just a great value card that helps us dig for our Gates and synergises with our plan B cards.
Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker - The other half of our Resto Angel plan B win con. As with the Angel, this goblin can be a value engine along side Cloudblazer and Mulldrifter.
Mulldrifter - Another great value card just like Cloudblazer.
Seedborn Muse - Slightly awkward untapper, since it happens during opponent’s turn, but still very powerful. Especially when combined with things like Crackling Perimeter. It can also enable wins off Enter the Infinite where the main constraint tends to be to how many mana you can produce during a single turn.
The Gitrog Monster - Another additional land per turn card, but with some extra bonus text. This card works synergises with our cycling lands, Uncharted Realms, and Grapple with the Past, as the draw trigger on he frog doesn’t care how the land got into th graveyard. If you also have Excavator in play, the sacrifice trigger is much less painful and the frog is just a pure draw card engine at that point.
Greenwarden of Murasa - A good Eternal Witness style card that helps the deck fight through land destruction, but is otherwise a good value card. The extra death trigger is what gives it the nod over Witness.
Ulvenwald Hydra - Big creature that can threaten to win on its own, but is included for its ETB to fetch out a gate or Maze’s End, or any other useful utility land for that matter. It can be very effective alongside Kiki Jiki to both threaten a win via combat while also progressing the Maze End game plan.
Amulet of Vigor - Probably the best card in the deck given how many tap lands we play. It also accelerates our Maze’s End, especially in conjunction with additional land per turn cards.
Animist's Awakening - This ramp spell is a bit hit or miss, but can be an excellent way to get a couple of extra Guildgates into play in the later turns. Generally the plan is to cast this for 6-7+ mana and Spellmastery. It’s a bit like Boundless Realms in this deck, which cannot otherwise play a card like that.
Burgeoning - A lot of our cards draw cards or put lands into out hand. Maze’s End puts itself into our hand. As a result, this enchantment can provide a lot of value. Cast early it can put you very far ahead.
Expedition Map - Classic card to fetch our a particular land. Generally it is Maze’s End, but Wolf Run or High Market can sometimes be better.
Quicken - Mainly in the deck to enable wins with Enter the Infinite. The idea being that you can cast a card like Splendid Reclamation at instant speed after a Seedborn untap and discarding all the drawn Gates to Turbulent Dreams.
Traverse the Ulvenwald - Another Tutor that can fetch any land. It’s useful to point out that it can also search out Ulvenwald Hydra which will then get that land and put it directly into play.
Constant Mists - The best Fog we can play. In conjunction with Excavator it provides an indefinite stalling mechanism until we draw into a sweeper or something. If we have an additional land per turn card, we are not even necessarily stopping our game plan either.
Crackling Perimeter - Guildgate themed alternate win con that can actually be quite effective along side cards like Seedborn Muse or Korean Restorer.
Grapple with the Past - Because it doesn’t limit you to choosing from only the top x cards of the library, it makes this the best Grisly Salvage style card. In reality it’s more of an instant speed Restore.
Life from the Loam - The best graveyard retrieval for lands. There are some neat things you can do with it like rebuy cycling lands, then cycle them to rebuy Loam and dredge through the deck looking for Gates to then retrieve.
Mulch - Another good Grisely Salvage style card. This makes the cut because it gives us all of the revealed lands.
Nissa, Steward of Elements - Another good value card just like her 2-sided version. Late game you can cast her for 6+ counters and just keep using her zero activation for max value.
Summer Bloom - This card is included because of its potential for an explosive early start, and also because it can get your opponent’s off guard enabling an early win from seemingly nowhere.
Sylvan Scrying - Another any land tutor card. The deck has several good options to grab other than Maze’s End.
Turbulent Dreams - Mainly in the deck to enable wins using Enter the Infinite. It allows you to discard all of your gates so that you can then Splendid Reclamation them into play. Generally you need quite a bit of setup and a lot of mana to pull it off, but it does give you a way to instantly win in the late game.
Painful Truths - One of the better card draw spells that is ironically easy to cast on our clunky 5-color manabase.
Realms Uncharted - Great card to grab a bunch of Gates and then rely on stuff like Excavator or other cards to recur them into play.
Rites of Flourishing - Provides additional lands and cards per turn which is too much value for it to matter that it benefits your opponent’s. Often their game plan revolves around creatures that you will sweep away anyway, so in some sense we get more value out of it in the long run.
Day of Judgment - Creature sweeper. Nice budget option. Wrath of God, Supreme Verdict, and Damnation are also good options.
Ghirapur Orrery - Very similar to Rites of Flourishing. Best cast when you are about to empty your hand.
Harmonize - Another solid draw spell. This one being Green is significant, as our non-gate lands are heavily biased towards that colour, so it will be much easier to cast than similar Blue options.
Kiora, Master of the Depths - Very effective at ramping and recurring lands. She is the better or the two Kiora. Paired with Krosan Restorer it gets a bit out of hand.
Kiora, the Crashing Wave - If you can get 2 Explores from her, you are doing well. She can sometimes stall problematic commanders or things like Valakut.
Reap and Sow - This is primarily played to give you another land tutor, bonus that it puts it straight into play. The land destruction half can often be relevant too though.
Splendid Reclamation - This card sometimes plays like a 1-card combo, especially if you have been using Loam during the game or if there is a mill deck in the group. Getting back even just a handful of lands is generally enough for it to be worthwhile. It’s a key card in an Enter the Infinite win sequence.
Tempt with Discovery - Cast early enough, opponents may not realise what you’re up to and give you a few extra Gates. Even with the risk that you only get 1, it tutors any land and puts it into play, which is good in itself.
Nissa, Vital Force - The last and most expensive of the included Nissa’s, she’s great as a means of recurring lands, which is basically why she’s in the deck. On the off chance you can plus her and keep her at 6 loyalty until your next turn, the ultimate’s emblem is also pretty good.
Rout - Instant speed sweepers are very good, as you can wait for maximum value and keep the initiative.
Worm Harvest - Good card at stalling the board that plays well and on theme with our lands matter deck. Excellent along side Excavator, which essentially gives you the rebuy for free.
Urban Evolution - Maybe the best draw spell we have. It’s easy for the deck to cast and puts an extra land into play. Great from all angles.
Akroma's Vengeance - Because our game plan revolves are lands, Sweepers that destroy most non-lands are very good for us. It’s not without some pain sometimes, as we may lose an Amulet or something else, but generally this is going to hurt our opponent’s way more than us. These sweepers are especially important to deal with more non-creature oriented decks like those playing Paradox Engine. Vengeance is nice also in that it won’t destroy our planeswalkers.
Austere Command - Similar to Vengeance, this sweeper will help us with non-creatures and creatures alike. Command is great for its flexibility.
Hour of Revelation - This takes care of everything, and almost always for only 3 mana.
Merciless Eviction - Another sweeper with flexibility like Austere. It’s an important addition to give us outs to indestructible permanents.
Planar Cleansing - The classic destroy all non-land permanents spell.
Fated Retribution - There are not many speed sweepers, but the timing is usually well worth the extra expense.
Praetor's Counsel - Good stuff card that helps us to recur lands if needed, but otherwise is just good at generating a lot of value in a long game.
Enter the Infinite - This card is essentially a 1-card Combo if you can setup properly and do your math right. You’ll need a ton of mana to pull it off, as generally your looking either have or put into play Seedborn or Amulet along with some additional land per turn cards. Play out the drawn Guildgates, with the help of Summer Bloom if you can, then untap after passing the turn and activate Maze. If you include Turbulent Dreams, you can also setup for a win by discarding your Gates and casting Splendid Reclamation. Quicken is helps to setup the Splendid Reclamation win, by allowing you to do during your opponent's turn after an untap with Seedborn.
Maze’s End & Guildgates (Azorius Guildgate, Boros Guildgate, Dimir Guildgate, Golgari Guildgate, Gruul Guildgate, Izzet Guildgate, Orzhov Guildgate, Rakdos Guildgate, Selesnya Guildgate, Simic Guildgate) - Pretty straightforward. Just make sure to have all 10 Gates.
Bojuka Bog - Good land tutor target to deal with decks abusing their graveyards.
High Market - This is a card you will want if you are playing with Child of Alara as your commander. It gives you an easy way to sacrifice him in order to trigger the sweeper effect.
Kessig Wolf Run - Great inclusion that gives you the ability to close out a game with basically any creature.
Maze of Ith - Excellent defensive card. It’s worthwhile to consider even runnings it’s contemporary version as well.
Reliquary Tower - Useful commander staple land to include. Comes in handy when we are holding a lot of reactive or late game spells but want to keep digging with card draw.
Tectonic Edge - Budget Strip Mine. The key is that it doesn’t let the opponent search for a replacement, allowing locks with Excavator or Crucible.
Westvale Abbey - Somewhat difficult to transform, it is a low opportunity cost to include it and it fits the lands matter theme. Sometimes decks will fold to an indestructible lifelinker, especially if you then sweep the board.
City of Brass & others (Cascading Cataracts, City of Brass, Command Tower, Exotic Orchard, Grand Coliseum, Mana Confluence, Path of Ancestry, Vivid Crag, Vivid Creek, Vivid Grove, Vivid Marsh, Vivid Meadow) - Including as many good 5 color lands as you can is important to keep the deck consistent.
Savage Lands & friends (Frontier Bivouac, Jungle Shrine, Opulent Palace, Sandsteppe Citadel, Savage Lands, Seaside Citadel) - Tri-lands are the next best thing to 5-color lands. However, not as important to include all of them. I suggest sticking to the ones that produce Green, as a majority of the deck needs Green, particularly the spells that allow you to fix your mana.
Tranquil Thicket & Cyclers (Scattered Groves, Sheltered Thicket, Slippery Karst, Tranquil Thicket) - These cards are generally more spells than lands. They play so well with cards like Loam that it’s worthwhile to have a few. Again, limiting to Green ones is suggested.
Forest - Lastly, we have a handful of basics. In part to fetch with Nissa or effects from the opponent like Ghost Quarter or Path to Exile. Green again to best support the deck, but if you expect cards like From the Ashes, it’s advisable to include one of each of the other types.
Feb 15, 2018I'd be bringing in Walking Ballista against Aggro if I had it, but not against Control. Against Midrange, likely not, but it would really depend on the specific deck. I don't see a ton of lists playing Ballista though, and it's probably more of a mainboard card over Motorist than a sideboard option. The trouble with the Ballista build is that it is a lot less consistent, since you don't benefit from the Scry 2 filtering of Motorist, and a lot less aggressive. Ballista was popular when we still had Gideon.Posted in: Proven (Standard)
Duress definitely comes in against control and combo. Usually those would be the only two decks you want it for. More or less, you are swapping creature removal for hand disruption. Against Midrange, your Disintegrations are very good so you want to keep them in. Abrade can be good and can be lacklustre depending. Sometimes Fatal Push might come in over Abrade depending on the creatures you are fighting against. Rarely would you want Duress.
Feb 14, 2018I don't have a sideboard guide per se. Personally I try to stay flexible. For example, depending on what my opponent's decks first 3 turns are likely to look like, I might be inclined to side out Exemplars on the Draw and side them back in on the Play. As in the latter case, there is a good chance to get the tempo initiative and ride that to victory.Posted in: Proven (Standard)
In general, red aggro you want to be control pretty much Play or Draw. Side in your removal and Sweepers. Side out some of your more awkward blockers.
Midrange can be tricky, but we are in general the aggro deck. However, Fumigate is actually still pretty good here, since our threats will wear it much better than theirs and we can setup a big blowout.
Control, we are pretty much always the aggro deck. Some of our removal comes out and Duress, other disruption, and special control killer type threats come in. Just be mindful of a classic control sideboard strategy of bringing in threats like Regal Caracal.
Feb 13, 2018Sideboarding vs RDW: yes, Fumigate or Settle as sweepers. Cast Out or Ixalan's Binding for opposing Hazorets. Any extra Harvesters helps. I would side out of Exemplar and some number or Hearts and Scrounger. Maybe shave a Disintegrate or two if you also have cheaper removal available like Magma Spray.Posted in: Proven (Standard)
Scarab God: We are relatively fast, so the game has to drag out for the god to be relevant. That being said, we have access to Cast Out or Ixalan Binding, as mentioned. Both good options to answer Scarab too.
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