Thoughts on the new ugin?
Ugin, The Unspeakable
Legendary Planeswalker — Ugin
Colorless spells you cast cost 2 less.
+1: Exile the top card of your library face down and look at it. Create a 2/2 colorless Spirit creature token. When that token leaves the battlefield, put the exiled card in your hand.
-3: Destroy target permanent that is one or more colors.
4 starting loyalty
Blockers, card advantage, cost reduction (not super applicable), removal. The mana cost is a little awkward- it’s not cheap enough to be played without tron like baby karn, but doesn’t stabilize like big ugin or mindslaver. Worth a test tho imo.
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Oct 29, 2018Ok, can someone explain Summary Dismissal to me?Posted in: Control
Looking at it, it seems pretty bad. Its cmc is high and its blue cost is high for its cmc. It doesn't draw. What are we planning to counter with this? Ulamog or World Breaker seem like obvious targets, but outside of those, I really don't know. Storm can remand grapeshots (or just play more/empty), UW has better cheap counterspells and will probably win a counter war if we play a 4cmc counterspell... I don't even know what else this could come in against.
I guess it's pretty good as I've seen a lot of people running it, I'd just like to know why.
Oct 13, 2018Spirits is for sure rough... A decent amount of removal is the big thing. Silent arbiter, which is really good against most aggressive decks, is only okay here because it can't block and gets queller'd a lot anyways. Maybe a second Ugin in the 75 if you don't have one already; a resolved Ugin wrecks decks like spirits, and often it's a race to tron for ugin/o-stone.Posted in: Control
Sep 21, 2018IIRC surgical is in the combo hate section.Posted in: Control
As for kozilek, he says it’s kinda like Ugin, but for spells instead of creatures... My first thought was that mindslaver was pretty much better for the 10cmc, but I can see times where the cast trigger would matter, and we can definitely take advantage of the counter ability. My main concern is that it’s a flat 10 instead of mindslaver’s 6+4, which means it’s more likely to get stuck in hand, and we can’t pitch it to thirst.
Sep 12, 2018Colonnade is definitely an important target that I missed.Posted in: Control
I still think there's a case for MB spatial though, it's definitely not fair to say that there's not even a chance. Each has clear upsides and downsides, it's a matter of weighing them vs the current meta and the rest of your deck.
Also, river of tears is never something you should be relying on to reduce the life loss- even if you run 3 or 4 rivers, a 2-mana sorcery-speed kill spell (that still costs 2 life) is just not very good. Unless I'm at <4 life, I'd rather be holding up counters or instant-speed removal.
Sep 11, 2018The list of creatures that dismember always kills and spatial always doesn't in modern is somewhat short:Posted in: Control
Street wraith (technically)
off the top 50 creatures in modern from MTGGoldfish. Others off the top of my head are reality smasher, tasigur, bedlam reveler, and most things in living end.
Spatial kills everything in humans and spirits (w/o lords), everything in burn, everything in counters company, everything in trad affinity, everything in jund except big goyfs and scoozes, everything in wizards... list goes on.
The 4 life that dismember costs shouldn't be diminished. 4 life is a big deal against decks looking to beat down fast; aka the decks we have the most trouble with. Often trading the 4 life for a creature will buy you time overall, but i'd encourage you to test when the 4 life vs the 1 extra mana matters. Dismembering a vengevine hurts the soul.
I used to be on 2 dismember main... I switched to a 1/1 split, and I've been liking it, although it could go either way. The big delve creatures, hollow ones, and revelers are all threats that we can't easily repeal/deal with in other ways, and killing them is important... just make sure to pack some of both in the 75.
Sep 3, 2018Nice finish. I've found the same thing with ugin in gifts piles- especially against decks like spirits, gifts turns into 3 cards.Posted in: Control
It could be worth trying a karn+talisman list with extra gifts, too. Talismans would help offset buried ruin in terms of blue mana, and karn is kind of like ugin in that your opponent will almost never give you karn off gifts. He does also synergize with crucible, and with the extra chalices in your build.
I'm definitely not above jamming a second gifts in my crucible-less, buried ruin-less build tbh.
As for how to play it in less gifts-centric builds, I agree with barrin... I've always looked at it as a card advantage spell, and not necessarily as an instant game-winner. You get your 3rd and 4th best cards for any given scenario, yeah, but we have plenty of redundancy, not to mention recursion in the forms of snappy and academy ruins. Running it without a 100% guaranteed slaver lock pile is totally fine: there are a few lines you can take where if your opponent does everything to keep you off of academy ruins, you can either get 3 out of 4 wincons or just rip through like 20 cards, which should usually be enough to win.
Snapcaster is very good with gifts (and just by itself). I'd recommend one in your list VickVega, if budget isn't a concern. It lets you recast relevant spells that you giftsed for and didn't get, and if you don't need to answer something immediately, you can flash back gifts.
Aug 17, 2018A few things about gifts:Posted in: Control
You can always fetch a mindslaver (or any artifact wincon) to either your hand or your graveyard to recur w/ academy ruins, which helps speed up your inevitability.
We run so many 1-ofs that an instant-speed gifts can almost always get us what we want for the next turn. Examples:
Ugin/Ostone/Cyc Rift/EE for wipes
Slaver/Ugin/Ballista/Wurmcoil for wincons
Condescend/Supreme Will/Remand/Snappy for counters
Map/Twest/Snappy/Slaver for Academy Ruins (note: doesn’t guarantee the Ruins, but you can guarantee any other two cards as an alternative)
Repeal/Dismember/Cyc Rift/Snappy for bounce/removal
Obviously all of these depend on your deck, the matchup and the board state. Wurmcoil is bad in some matchups where sundering titan is better (like jeskai), so you’d switch those. I run a spell burst, so I usually get that over remand.
I find the crucible/buried ruin package to be a bit too slow. We can win in other ways, and the opportunity cost of the colorless land over a blue source isn’t worth it to me.
As far as gifts winning the game on resolve... if we end-step it and untap with tron, usually, if we hardcast it t4, it’s just a good card. That said, it is a really good value card and I would recommend testing with it at least some.
Jul 24, 2018I don't play trinket mage right now, but I'd still rather have needle. T1 vs T2 can be a pretty big difference.Posted in: Control
On another note, I've been rocking a 1-of spell burst in place of my second Supreme Will. Having a hard counter can be good early game- like a t2 stirrings, or a t2 goblin guide, or even t1 opal. In the mid game, it gets better- for example, it's hard for us to stop 2 lethal bolts on t5 with condescends/remands when we don't have a billion mana- spell burst takes care of one for cheap, and leaves you with mana left to counter the other. Plus, once you start buying it back, it's obviously very strong. I replaced Supreme Will because I've found that it's more often an impulse than a counter- in fact, it's a pretty bad counter.
Jul 24, 2018Here's my sideboard, if it helps:Posted in: Control
1 Mindslaver (I run a 1/1 split and 2/0 with wurmcoil- they could be switched, still not sure)
1 Chalice (1 main)
1 Tec Edge
1 Grafdigger's Cage
1 Spell Pierce
I'm not beyond playing a Needle/Spyglass, to be honest. I've felt the same way against walkers, and needle on Aether Vial is decent also. I think I'll trim a Surgical for a Needle, at least to try.
Burn is rough, but imo the best outs are chalices, spatials, and counters such as spell snare/spell pierce- our MB counters are pretty bad. Also TKS is solid.
Jul 20, 2018We don't have a mana denial plan, but we do have a mana advantage plan. Tec Edge acts as a backup of sorts. If we don't have our mana advantage, then we're basically a bad control deck. Against UWx, for example, we often lose because it's hard to slam a 6-8cmc threat and win a counter war and counter a Teferi that removes our threat in one turn cycle without a mana advantage. Since typically, we can gain more mana through fewer lands with tron, slowing our opponent down with Tec Edge as opposed to leaving them neutral with FoR is advantageous.Posted in: Control
Jul 19, 2018Echoing Truth is an interesting choice. Is it for anything in particular? We already have a decent amount of bounce in the main.Posted in: Control
I'd personally replace it with either another surgical or Grafdigger's Cage. Only 1 surgical for GY hate is pretty light.
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