Quote from FoodChainGoblins »Serious question here for everybody. Do you feel that this deck is Tier 1, Tier 2, or Tier 3? Now I know when it comes down to it, it really is semantics and (most) any solidly built deck on any given day can take down a Modern tournament. But how do you feel it ranks with the likes of Grixis Shadow, E Tron, Titanshift, and Affinity? I realize that it probably matters less now that WotC is giving less info, but it irks me a little bit for us to be listed here on MTGS as "Tier 3."
Here's my opinion... I feel that it's Tier 2, but close to Tier 1. I think it's a very strong deck that is underestimated in the meta. I know. I underestimated it for the longest time until I decided to finally try it 6 months ago. I'm pretty sure many are the same way.
Quote from SmauG »With the printing of Kitesail Freebooter i'll be definetly trying an Abzan(U) list. I would even go as far as dropping blue alltogether and go full disruptive.
My current list allready has some black mainboard and a lot sideboard to the point I feel it's realy just a blue splash for Reflector Mage rather than Bant.
I wonder, has anyone ever tried a list without the ranp and exalted triggers of Noble Hierarch?
Quote from Shelldell »Welcome, SmauG.
1. Maulfist Revolutionary isn't a bad card, it's just competing against a lot of other good cards for the 3 CMC slot. The trample is nice, though Maulfist is dependent upon having another card with a counter on it already to gain value from its ETB and on-death abilities. This is not unusual in a Humans deck, but it's not guaranteed, either. Mirran Crusader and Knight of the Reliquary can also have evasion (Crusader via protection, Knight via Kessig Wolf Run), a degree of resiliency, and the ability to punch for damage that exceeds their CMC.
2. Both Thalias and Avacyn's Pilgrim are all loosely part of a package. The Thalias together are effective against a huge swath of the format, though they both miss against hand-spewing creature-based aggro decks like Affinity. Running the Pilgrims is important to cast Big Thalia earlier, which is strongest T2 on the play, and it also helps you ease the tension between Thalia GoT & CoCo by hitting 5 mana if necessary. Because you have more dorks you can then shave some weaker 2 CMC humans and load on a few more good 3 CMC ones. If you aren't running 3+ Pilgrims you can get away with 2-3 Thalia GoT but I wouldn't bother with Big Thalia. Running CoCo, Path, and Reflector Mage already gives you some decent game against midrange decks. Rallier's value depends upon how many 2 CMC creatures you keep. If you move to the Pilgrim + 3-drop plan you'll end up shaving some 2-drops which weakens Rallier and makes Eternal Witness more attractive. Overall I'm not pushing you to adopt this package, I just want you make sure that you understand the downstream build decisions that come from it.
3. Mantis Rider is an excellent card, and perhaps equally important is Izzet Staticaster in the board. However, Avacyn's Pilgrim does not play well with Mantis Rider. Trading black for red and cutting Pilgrim (which admittedly is a weak card in and of itself) means cutting down 3 drops to 9-10, cutting Big Thalia / Kambal / Sin Collector, and adding more 2-drops. These 2-drops could be Meddling Mage (see Headminerve's lists), Metallic Mimic, Mayor, Baby Jace, etc.. the community hasn't really aligned on an optimal 2-drop yet. Most are usually OK, and even situationally decent, but none have been consistently incredible. I cut Mimic once I realized that it doesn't do anything off of CoCo.
The overall choice of red vs black is largely a meta call IMO. I personally think black usually does a bit better against control and unfair decks while red does better against affinity / infect and a few other small aggro decks, but you can build both lists to try to minimize their respective weaknesses. For instance, I'm running 2x Ceremonious Rejection to try to shore up WGUB's matchup against Affinity (and help with E-Tron). Conversely you can build WGUR lists with more Mana leaks in the side to help against unfair matchups. Finally, you have some lists that try to stick as closely to WG(u) as possible (see EpicEmpiricism's list above) -- this gives you the most consistent and painless experience, which can be just as valuable as either Red or Black.
4. Don't worry about Solemnity for now. In terms of enchantments be prepared with a plan against Blood Moon. I prefer Reclamation Sage or Qasali Pridemage to War Priest as the ability to hit artifacts and do double duty against Affinity etc is more important than being a human.
Quote from NeoSin »
I've been experimenting with this list ever since Shadows spoiled TL, but I never made an account until recently. As of recent, with the advent of GY strategies taking over the format, I've been running MB Anafenza, the Foremost. She can easily single handily win you the game against Dredge, and really pulls you ahead in the race against Death's Shadow or any sort of value Delirium strategy. She also has some neat little tricks with Mana dorks and dodges pain in the butts such as Anger of the Gods and Sweltering Suns.
A card I've run in the past is Grand Abolisher. What are thoughts and opinions on that in the metagame as it stands?