All users will need to merge their MTGSalvation account with a new or existing Twitch account starting Sept 25th. You can merge your accounts by clicking here. Have questions? Learn more here.
Magic Market Index for March 16th 2018
All Sets Are Good: Saviors of Kamigawa
Dominaria Spoiler Digest - Who's Who and What's What from the Release Notes
  • posted a message on GWx Vizier Company
    Ensnaring Bridge is a neat idea against those decks -- I think you should usually be able to get your hand below 4 cards to stop their 4/Xs by T3-T4. I am less certain of getting your hand slim enough to reliably shut out other aggro decks like Affinity, Humans, and Merfolk, though. Maybe Bridge could be a good 1-of if you're expecting a lot of E-Tron and Hollow One?

    Another SB option is Dusk // Dawn. Dusk has overlapping application against E-Tron + Hollow One, Merfolk, and parts of Humans, but both halves seem really solid vs BGx Traverse Shadow & Jund.

    I also had an unrelated question regarding Qasali Pridemage (especially in Bant): would you bring Pridemage in against Jund & Humans running 1-2x Grafdigger's Cage? To me, if they're going to stick a Cage earlier than we can Chord or CoCo for Pridemage in response then Pridemage isn't a very reliable answer. And outside of answering Cage the Pridemage is just an exalted bear... so I'm leaning towards not bringing in Pridemage and just accepting a few tough matches where they resolve an early cage. Is this the right call?

    Any other tech or tips for the Humans matchup?
    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on GWx Vizier Company
    Quote from Str1fe5 »
    Question: Do people get value out of tourney / match summaries or is that just a bunch of narcissim?
    I can't speak for everyone but I certainly appreciate it when people post match summaries. We want to get as much data together as possible, especially with detailed info on how well flex slots perform so we can better tune our lists. If you're worried about the match summary getting too long just toss it in a spoiler tab. Smile

    Quote from Arkaedrian »
    Does anyone have experience playing against Ponza? What's the matchup like for us?
    I've played several matches so far but this is still a difficult question to answer since there are so many versions of Ponza. Between the different builds and Ponza's high variance you could play against the archetype every week and have different results every time. On average I think we are slightly favored because their primary angle of interaction -- land destruction -- doesn't always line up well against our high Dork count. We can still win the game even if we're behind on board and mana if we just have 1G / 1W for our combo pieces. With that said you do need to respect the possible T2 Blood Moon / Stone rain. Mull for Fetches / basics / dorks and keep a ~3 land hand if possible. They are also typically removal-light with a few Bolts / Inferno Titan in the main and some red sweepers in the side. If you have Forge-Tenders and/or Selfless Spirits bring them in. Spell Queller and Tidehollow Sculler can do a great job of holding off some of their LD effects -- even if they're killed later in the game and they get their spell back the relevance of LD is probably diminished by that point. Comboing out is usually more realistic than trying to outgrind their top-end. With all of that said there will be some games where Ponza curves out perfectly with ramp into LD into threats and there's not too much we (or many other decks) can do about that, especially if they're on the play, so don't feel too bad if they've got the nuts.
    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on GWx Vizier Company
    @adri_kalo: What's your 75? I have had similar results with Courser but I wondered if that might be a natural effect of running her with only 21 lands and 8 fetches. I imagine you run more lands or at least a few more fetches to support Tracker?
    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on GWx Vizier Company
    @Torpf: if Dauntless Bodyguard's ability were templated more broadly as "Sacrifice Dauntless Bodyguard: Target creature gains indestructible until end of turn" I would be interested. But as it's worded now the combination of sequencing and single target restrictions as well as its arguably less relevant body stats compared to Selfless Spirit (flying) or Forge-Tender (pro-red) all offset the convenience of its lower casting cost to me. The fact that you have to sequence Bodyguard after the creature you're trying to protect is already in play gives your opponent a chance to remove that creature, so Bodyguard can only save the creature at instant speed if you have Chord ready to cast in hand. I'm glad you're testing it, though, good luck.

    @Arkaedrian: what kind of meta are you expecting?
    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on GWx Vizier Company
    Thanks for the suggestions, guys! Here's the list I ended up taking to the IQ today:
    In the end I decided to test Fauna Shaman in the main just to get more data on her even if she seemed a little risky vs interactive decks. But I did take your suggestions to bulk up on Forge-Tender SB and Finks MB.
    Sorry, I'm a little too tired to remember SB swaps but if anyone has questions about specific matchups I'll try to remember.

    R1 Chelsea on Bant Company (2-1)
    This matchup went to board stalls all three games. G1 I combo'd out, G2 she stuck Elspeth and ended up taking over, G3 I went to time but I combo'd out. Not too much interaction in this matchup, felt pretty favorable.

    R2 Bernard on Ponza (1-2)
    G1 he ramped into T3 Inferno Titan to Bolt away my board and I couldn't answer it so I died. G2 he started setting up a value engine of Tracker and Courser but ignored me so I combo'd out on ~T4. G3 I made the punt of the century and for some reason lead with Botancial Sanctum instead of Fetching up my basic T1. Naturally he followed up with Blood Moon and I'm left with just Devoted Druid and two mountains as mana. A few turns later I drew into a Forest and Chorded for Vizier, followed by a top deck Fauna Shaman. The route to the combo looked open but I'm a few turns too slow and he's been pumping up a couple Trackers which finished me off.

    R3 Michael on GB Tron (2-0)
    G1 I combo'd out T3. G2 he picked apart my board and hand with 2x Collective Brutality, Thoughtseize, and Warping Wail. Fortunately he kept a hand that's light on Tron lands and threats. I Negate a second Thoughtseize to keep Ballista in hand, and Eternal Witness back a CoCo that had been pitched off Brutality to rebuild. I chip in with a growing Ballista and Witness and finish him off with a couple Ballista pings.

    R4 X on Humans (0-2)
    G1 I had a bit of a punt here as well. He had T2 Meddling Mage naming Chord and was casting T3 Phantasmal Image, presumably to copy Mage and block CoCo. I responded by tapping Druid and casting the CoCo in my hand, selecting Recruiter + Reflector Mage bouncing his Meddling Mage. Phantasmal resolved and he copied my Reflector, bouncing my Devoted Druid back to hand and setting me back a few turns, lol. This, combined with a Freebooter taking my Chord, set me too far behind. I can't remember much of G2 but I was similarly a turn or two too slow and most of my blockers like Finks matched up poorly against his attackers due to flying (Mantis) or first strike (Thalias). My opponent was a nice dude and pointed out that I had Jace in play G2 and forgot that I could target his Images with Jace's +1 to kill it.

    R5 Philip on Affinity (0-2)
    G1 I lead with Hierarch on the play and passed T2 with mana open for Queller. He aimed Galvanic Blast at Hierarch, which I intercepted, but he had a second Blast to hit Queller, which freed up the first Blast to hit Hierarch. I played Recruiter and he Blasted that, too. Meanwhile he's been growing a Thopter with Steel Overseer and I can't catch up. G2 I mulled to a 5 with hierarch, clique and something else which is hit by T1 Thoughtseize. Somehow I got a little mana screwed and couldn't cast Clique until a turn after he Whipflares my board away. Clique does manage to grab Plating but he's already got two Ravegers and an Overseer going to town.

    R6 Sean on GB Elves (1-2)
    This was 100% goldfishing. G1 I combo out T3 on the play. G2 he chains Heritage Druid into CoCos into a couple Shaman of the Packs to kill me. G3 I assemble the infinite mana combo T3 but can only play Baby Jace. Baby Jace helps me dig a bit, but I don't find any payoff card over the next two turns and die.

    Final record 2-4
    Thoughts & takeaways:

    Overall I went 2-4. Normally that'd be kinda sad but I was relatively pleased since it was my first IQ and I've only been on the deck a couple weeks. The deck itself was mostly solid, I just have to grow into it by tightening up my play, getting more reps in, and building my endurance for longer events.

    I really liked Fauna Shaman and Baby Jace in my 2-CMC flex slots. However, this may be because the meta was a little more on the fast side than the grindy side. There were a few Jund and Jeskai control decks there but I guess I dodged them all day. Maybe my opinion on Shaman and JVP will change after playing them more.

    The Scooze in the main got boarded out in pretty much all of my games, but it still seems so relevant against such a broad range of decks that I can't bring myself to cut it yet.

    Vendilion Clique performed well, but perhaps not so well that I want to risk running into Legendary issues again in the future.

    Reflector Mage was solid against Bant Company / Humans and helped me get some cards back from under Quellers / Meddling Mage / Freebooter. However with BBE in Jund now and a decrease in Delve threats Reflector Mage doesn't seem like the home run against Midrange it was a few months ago. It also didn't seem worth bringing in against Swarm decks. I still want 1 in my SB to tutor for but will cut the second.

    Having 4x counterspells against Tron (+Queller & Clique) felt really good. Highly recommended.

    Many of my losses today (and in other matches this week) were from being blown out with sweepers. This is something I need to get better about playing around, but I'd like to improve my odds a bit more with a Selfless Spirit in the side.

    I'd also like to have a few more haymakers vs swarm decks. Path is a start, but decks like Elves and Affinity can shrug off a Path relatively easily. Kyle Boggemes has advocated for a second Walking Ballista in the side to ping aggro decks while keeping up your density of combo pieces. I'll also go back to trying Lejoon's suggestion of Settle the Wreckage.

    Taken together, here's my updated sideboard: No changes to the mainboard for now.
    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on GWx Vizier Company
    @Ludafish -- in theory JVP seems like a tremendously flexible game 1 role-player. Looting is relevant both when we're looking to combo out ASAP and when we want to grind and improve raw card quality. Likewise, flashing back a CoCo or Chord could help in either assembling the combo or a more aggressive board state. I say "in theory" because I haven't had JVP come up in enough games yet to really say. Even if JVP is just catching removal that would've been aimed at a combo piece, Queller, Courser, etc I don't think that's such a bad thing. With that said he'd probably come out vs Jund and Burn. What's your experience with the card? What do you think is better in its place?


    @Str1fe5 -- Phyrexian Revoker would be neat against Tron and Affinity, yeah. I think these matchups may already be somewhat favored, though, and Revoker seems fragile and doesn't excite me in too many other matchups. I'll think about it more.

    Regarding susceptibility to Grafdigger's Cage, is this issue unique to my build decisions, or just a common issue for Bant due to its lack of Decay and Pulse effects? What would you suggest to remedy the issue?
    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on GWx Vizier Company
    Fair question, Str1fe5.

    Although I want to have a plan together for Storm, the main matchups I'm anticipating for Saturday are Jund, Gx Tron, Burn, Affinity, and Humans. Meddling Mage didn't seem as exciting for that line-up. However, Selfless Spirit would be reasonable-to-great against many of those decks, and Forge-Tender would be quite welcome against Burn while covering some removal in Jund and Affinity.

    After talking to a few more people since yesterday I've also been thinking that Geist -- while awesome against Grixis Shadow and Ux control -- is perhaps poorly positioned against Jund due to Liliana and a higher threat / blocker density than most Shadow decks. Similarly, I'm still a little uncertain on Fauna Shaman. She seems like a solid role-player with some really interesting instant-speed applications but could be a poor choice if there's a lot of Jund and she either gets removed before untapping or we don't have creatures in hand to pitch.

    Despite my earlier hesitations about Voice's tension with Spell Queller and my reluctance to run mainboard cards that don't help with non-interactive matchups it looks like enough Bant players have been having success with 2x Voice in the 75 that I'll give it a try.

    With that in mind I'm leaning towards -1 Fauna Shaman for +1 Voice of Resurgence or the second Ooze in the main and -2 Geist, -1 Settle the Wreckage in the side for +2 Forge-Tender or 1:1 split of Forge-Tender:Spirit and +1 Voice. I'm open to suggestions on alternative swaps if anyone has feedback!
    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on GWx Vizier Company
    I'm planning on attending an IQ next week and had a few more questions for you guys. First I wanted to talk about Courser in Bant's main right now. It can be a really solid role-player against almost every deck aside from combo, but I'm starting to feel the disadvantage of playing with your top card revealed more keenly. Most recently I played a game against Grixis Shadow and between his early Inquisition and my T3 Courser my opponent spent most of the game playing with perfect information about my hand. In a proactive Abzan approach this wouldn't be such a big deal but with Bant our counterspells, Quellers, and potential to CoCo/Chord into Queller or other interactive pieces all lose a decent amount of power as our opponent can seem them in hand and minimize their effectiveness or see that we don't have them and play more aggressively. Even outside of Spell Queller just broadcasting that you're about to topdeck your last combo piece seems a little loose. Is this a problem, or am I overemphasizing the drawback of revealing your draws relative to the advantages Courser provides?

    I've thought about replacing Courser with a second Ooze as they provide some similar effects against Burn and midrange / aggro. Ooze requires more mana investment but is more disruptive and can have a higher impact as a late game topdeck. I've seen plenty of Knightfall lists running 2-3x Ooze, though this is partly because they don't have Chord to help tutor for singletons. Does running a second Ooze in a Druid list ever make sense? Other options for this slot could be Tracker, Finks, or Voice.

    Second, against Storm I'd like to bring in 3x Path, 2x Negate, and 2x Will, which means shaving ~3 non-creature spells from the main. Most conventional guides recommend that you virtually never cut CoCo since it's the best card in the deck. However, directly Chording for combo pieces seems like the fastest route to victory in this matchup. Is this a situation where it's correct to cut some CoCos over Chord, or am I approaching this matchup incorrectly?

    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    Quote from maniospas »
    Emissary+dork achieve the T3 kills much more consistently (e.g. if we run, say 7 dorks) compared to Rallier + Cobras.
    Could you elaborate on why this is so? I'm not sure I follow.

    4 Birds / 4 Cobra / 4 Rallier
    T3 combo requires T1 Birds (4 copies) or T2 Cobra (4 copies) with a fetch land (11 copies).

    4 Hierarch / 3 Birds / 4 BTE
    T3 combo requires T1 dork (7 copies)

    I'm not really sure where the BTE fits in. You can play T1 Bird > T2 BTE + Saheeli > T3 Evo sac'ing BTE for Felidar. But you could also do T1 Bird > T2 Saheeli > T3 tick Saheeli down copying Bird + play any 2 drop + Evo sac'ing 2 drop for Feldiar.

    What am I overlooking here?
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    I've found Merfolk to be closer to 40:60... We can take games when we get lucky with early combos and sweepers but racing them has almost always ended poorly for me. The most important parts of this matchup are keeping them off Islandwalk by mulling away opening hands that either have a Breeding Pool / Hallowed Fountain or require you to fetch for blue, blowing up Spreading Seas, and/or sniping their Lords, and presenting an early combo before they get too set-up and start holding up mana for interaction.

    In theory Engineered Explosives and Fiery Justice should be really good against them but between mainboarded Cursecatchers + Spell Pierces and SB Negates actually resolving your sweepers at the right moment can be tricky, and we don't have any way to filter up or tutor for spell-based sweepers so overall it's not the most consistent defense. Sometimes you land a sweeper and its a blow-out. I've also had a few games where I've stuck Engineered Explosives T2 that they played around with a 1-drop, 2-drop, and 3-drop on board, keeping the rest of their 2-drops in hand. If you're going to play EE I'd maybe hold it back so that they play into it a bit more before you deploy it and immediately crack it. However, deploying it later after they've set up more does run the risk of playing EE into an open Negate. Fiery Justice can be a bit more reliable and mana efficient against them, though it favors comboing rather than trying to race due to the life gain. I think this is okay since racing isn't a great approach anyways as I've mentioned.

    Gearhulk is a really welcome sight and your best card in the matchup next to Path as long as you've got some acceleration to get it out by T4. I've got 4 Merfolk players at my shop so I've even thought about running 2x Gearhulks in the side, lol. If you're in black then Vengeful Rebel and Abrupt Decay are game-winning cards -- cloning / blinking Rebel can make racing feasible and Decay can hit all of their most threatening cards, Lords / Vial / Seas, without getting stopped by Curse Catcher or Spell Pierce. In Red Abrade serves as a passable poor-man's Abrupt Decay, and Lightning Helix can help stabilize a bit as well. Worship can be good if they're not running too many copies of Vapor Snag or Echoing Truth. . My most successful plays usually involved getting Saheeli down after Felidar -- T1 Bird > T2 Removal > T3 Felidar > T4 Saheeli. This matchup also rewards running more copies of Felidar Guardian rather than just 1x Felidar + 4x Evo since Evo can be taxed by Cursecatcher and hit by their counterspells.

    You've probably noticed a theme here: Negate answers our most important cards in the matchup: removal, Evo, and Saheeli. If they mull to a reasonably aggressive hand with Negate and are familiar with the matchup / play smartly they will probably win. If you're running a typical 4c list -- especially one with 4x Evo and 1x Felidar -- I honestly don't think there's much you can do to make things consistently favorable without really warping your 75. If you're on a 5c or psuedo-abzan midrange plan like Emzed I think you can stand a decent chance if your post-board 60 looks something like this:

    Staticaster is a tricky call. I've had one (good) Fish player tell me that I should bring it in if only to deal with Master of the Waves but I've heard a couple other players say they want to cut Master of Waves to bring in more copies of Negate, Echoing Truth, or Dismember to keep us off the combo and I'm inclined to believe that this latter approach is a more effective strategy against us. I also don't like leaning on Blue cards against Merfolk since that puts me in more scenarios where I may have to fetch up an Island to play the card and and turn on Islandwalk. Subsequently I've mostly stopped bringing in Staticaster vs Merfolk but if you have a lot of dead cards to take out in the matchup and not that much to bring in then Staticaster might be OK.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on GWx Vizier Company
    Quote from Lejoon »
    I would not think that running a Stomping Ground and a Kessig is passable for a consistent mana base. You never want to fetch Stomping Ground proactively since Jace costs double blue and you have lots of blue cards. This means that a KoTR enabled Kessig would need two rounds of land sacrifices often and makes it also slow. You would also have to take more damage from the mana base. It might be worth it if you want to be more all-in on a "combo" or have more late game threats.
    Yeah, fair point. Jace's UU cost does pull things much more towards firmly Bant.

    This deck plays more like a more midrangey version of RUG Splinter Twin by playing alot of flash cards. Especially post board when you can choose to adopt even more to your opponent and you can choose to take a more combo-control role.
    Which common matchups to you expect to take the control role in and board in all of your counterspells? Mostly against opposing unfair decks?
    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    If you don't want to run counterspells the next best option might be a second Gaddock Teeg and a Selfless Spirit?
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    For creature-based removal in the main I think your next best options are Reflector Mage or Glorybringer.

    Against Tron and Titanshift I think you want 2x Unified Will or Disdainful Stroke.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on GWx Vizier Company
    Nice to see you here, Lejoon! :p

    Do you think it'd be worth running 1x Stomping Ground and swapping 1x Gavony for 1x Kessig Wolf Run so that your Knights can tutor up a win-con mana-outlet for your infinite mana? This seems especially convenient since you only have 2x Duskwatch Recruiters and 1x Chord of Calling.

    Settle the Wreckage is a really neat idea for the Bant shell since Bant holds up enough mana for all of its Flash creatures and Instants that it doesn't telegraph the spell as much as other tap-out GWx creature decks might. I'll give that a shot.

    Here's the list I'm currently building:
    My goal is to have almost every card in the main support the combo plan game 1 somehow, either by digging for the combo or by protecting it (and for Clique's case either digging or protecting). I’m not sure that this approach will be optimal if interactive decks continue to gain stock but that’s where I’ll start. I'd like to work Jace TMS in if his price drops enough after the reprint, and I agree that he could really power up the Bant shell. Kyle Boggemes recently wrote an article with his take on Bant Company + Jace that might interest you as well.
    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    Congrats on the 5-0, stu20. Dance

    Quote from stu20 »
    @Shelldell a few questions.
    3 guardians in the deck. When you cast them do you usually gain value from them (splicer, oath, rallier, tusk)?
    Usually Felidar generates some value, yeah. Occasionally you get some awkward openers that have Felidar and no blink target that you probably need to mull unless the rest of the curve is really good. It's not a great card so I could see shaving to 2 copies but I always want more than one so that my combo plan doesn't fold to a single Path and so that digging for Felidar with Oath has a higher success rate.

    Has qasali pridemage maindeck been good for you? You mentioned the lack of good two-drops that can smooth our draws so I was wondering if that a critic directed at qasali. I have been happy with slime since it doubles as hate for big mana strategies.
    Yes, Pridemage has been solid. Between gobs of Merfolk, Humans, and Taxes all playing Vials, Affinity being present, decks with mainboard Blood Moon like Ponza and Red Prison, there are a lot of artifacts and enchantments that I would prefer to remove earlier than later, and against every other deck a 2/2 with Exalted isn't a bad floor. I also like having more 2-drops both to smooth our curve and Evo into Felidar. If you go all-in on 4x Cobra + 4x Rallier + 4x Evo then Acidic Slime can be reliably accessible by ~T3, so I can see how it would work for your list. Without maxing out on that Cobra-Rallier-Evo package I find Slime's interaction to be a little slow with a body that's irrelevant in most matchups except midrange.

    The spell pierce/unified will in the sideboard confuses me. Mind sharing your thoughts on the split?
    Unified Will is an incredible spell against Big Mana decks, especially in the mid game if you can establish a board presence. However, against decks with lots of interaction or a fast combo you can find the spell getting inactivated when you need it most. For example against Storm I had my Bird Bolted and then I couldn't stop my opponent from going off next turn since they had Baral and I had no creatures. Spell Pierce is a slightly more reliable and mana efficient way to interact with decks that try to cast game-winning unfair spells in the early game, and occasionally it can accomplish some of the same things you want out of Unified Will, like countering Karns or Scapeshifts cast on curve. Running a split lets you bring in the more relevant counterspell if you only have space to swap one in, or bring in both against Big Mana when you really need it.

    Finally the plains/forest 2-2 split. Has that been working for you? Since I moved from that split to 3 forest/1 plains I have never looked back but I recognize that since I am playing coiling oracle the 3-1 split makes more sense to me.
    As a general rule of thumb I like having enough basics to cast most of my spells through Blood Moon. Previously I've ran Gearhulk, Sigarda, Lancers, or some other WW card that I wanted to support with two plains. Otherwise I agree that 3 Forests + 1 Plains better suits our ratio of mana costs.

    One other thing: whats your winning percentage with the combo? Like in 10 games you win do you win with the combo in about 5 of those games?
    That depends on what I'm playing against. Against evasive aggro decks it's like 80% combo and 20% beats. Against non-evasive aggro it's 50-50. Against Midrange or Control it's 80% beats and 20% combo. Against combo and Tron it's probably 60% combo and 40% beats. Since I have a lot of evasive aggro, combo, and Tron at my shop that's pushed me more towards combo wins -- over my last two FNM sessions 72% of my wins came from the combo and 28% from beats.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • To post a comment, please or register a new account.