Colossal plow is technically an artifact that only produces one color of mana, though the great henge is more likely to be actually useable.
Yeah Strixhaven will probably have enemy colored mana rocks, though I think they'll also do something else. We'll know more as we get more cards revealed.
Not having good flash options really limits what we can do in terms of somehow making a stage, and the instants and other cards with flash don't really seem to work together as well this standard.
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Mar 28, 2021 Posted in: Magic General
Mar 28, 2021Hmm, we can also create large mutate stacks, by mutating, making a token copy and then bouncing the original to mutate onto the copy, adding more of the "when this creature mutates..." text.Posted in: Magic General
We can use that to get an increasing number of mutate triggers as we mutate, however most of the interesting ones are targeted, and will fizzle unless we get a bolt bend.
Auspicious Starrix/Illuna, Apex of Wishes is the most promising, though we'd need to get things back into the library too. (Each trigger is still small as the base token isn't mutated)
Mar 27, 202112 layers already! Very tricky with Ashiok's Erasure.Posted in: Magic General
I've been looking for stages, There aren't many options for good shenanigans on the stack though so I was looking at Reflections of Littjara as a bad Dual nature/Swarm intelligence, I think Voracious Greatshark + Lutri, the Spellchaser (mostly copying something like bala ged recovery) is close, but doesn't look quite there. (Lutri legend rule-ing itself is also a problem)
There's also Verazol, the Split Current as an even worse Swarm Intelligence, but the kicker instants we have are pretty underwhelming.
Mar 26, 2021oh I missed Chandra, flame's catalyst with my search earlier.Posted in: Magic General
Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider allows for the ult on the same turn, so we can go off by turn 3.
Tapped land, pass
Land, tormod's crypt, tiblat's trickery it into vorinclex, pass
untap, tormod's crypt, tiblat's trickery it into chandra, then ult.
needing a R from the lands isn't too taxing.
Edit: replaced with strictly better line
Mar 26, 2021Yeah, we can use some other mana source and use one of the omens (omen of the hunt, omen of the dead etc) as the flash enchantment/sacrifice outlet.Posted in: Magic General
not using goose means our opening is slower, as goose is still our only 1 mana dork.
Mar 26, 2021Yeah, No flash makes things harder, though they have bailed us out with stuff like emergence zone and leyline of anticipation being printed in the last or second to last set before rotation.Posted in: Magic General
We can also do some stuff with tibalt's trickery to cheat on mana and as an awful pseudo flash, but its not very good.
Mar 25, 2021Oops Adrix and Nev, Twincasters are from c21, my bad, standard still has the thaumabroom combo at least.Posted in: Magic General
It is about that time, new Standard thread created. (here)
Mar 25, 2021With the Vintage deck at 61 cards and most of the sets released, its about time for a new thread for the standard version of the challenge. And while I am skeptical that we will be able to beat last year’s deck now that we don't have Thousand-Year Storm, there are still some powerful combos we have access to.Posted in: Magic General
So, without further ado, here are the rules, as stated on Stakfish's webpage:
The Rules of the Game
I’ve taken the liberty of adapting the rules from the original vintage challenge to this one. I’ve relaxed them in some places to allow for the limited cardpool, but for the most part I’ve left them as-is.
-Start with a Standard-legal deck of exactly 60 cards. No less, of course, and if we allowed more, you could deal arbitrary but finite damage by including as many copies of Rat Colony as you feel like, and it wouldn’t break the other rules.
-Conditions caused by randomness can resolve any way you like. In this deck, that mostly means that every single card draw is a Demonic Tutor in disguise: you can assume that the order of your deck is exactly what you want it to be. This veers pretty heavily into magical christmasland, but if we didn’t do it this way you’d have to figure out the average amount of damage a deck could deal, which is probably impossible.
-The opponent is a goldfish with a deck of 60 random basic lands. However, they are still playing to stop you: if you give your opponent a choice, they will pick whichever one is worse for you. The only exception is that they won’t concede the game. This is a sadistic goldfish that wants to make you play it out.
-No going infinite. Infinite really means “arbitrary” in magic, most of the time, so we define it like this: when you make your deck, I pick a finite number, say, a million, or Graham’s Number, or four. If, no matter what number I pick, there’s a line your deck can take that will deal at least that much damage, your deck goes infinite and is disqualified.
-This doesn’t matter to our deck, but other rules of magic apply: if I put 80,000,000 copies of Shock on the stack and target my opponent with each one, they’ll die on the tenth one, and I’ll have dealt only 20 damage. In practice, that means you’re either winning with a giant X-spell or by attacking with a lot of very big creatures.
-In the old challenge, you had to go off on turn one. Here, that rule is relaxed, with a caveat: the fewer turns required, the better. No one is impressed that you can deal a lot of damage on turn 50, or 50 million for that matter.
There are a few caveats and corner cases requiring some clarification in those rules:
1.Standard legal means that bans matter. Past Standards have not had any impactful bans for this challenge. That is no longer the case here as Lucky clover is a potentially useful card that we just don't get.
2.Even though Fae of Wishes could make sideboards relevant, we do not get a sideboard or a companion.
3.Since we control randomness and our opponent’s deck is “random” basic lands, we actually get to specify that they are all islands or plains or whatever. This is useful to avoid possibly going infinite if our opponent had, say, a mountain we could somehow steal and go infinite with.
4.The deck must be finite for all lines in the time limit, it doesn’t matter if the deck can go infinite on a later turn, as that turn doesn’t happen.
5.Our opponent will cooperate with any infinites, while opposing us otherwise. Cooperating leads to the deck’s disqualification giving it a terrible score This makes any way to give our opponent any meaningful choices doubly dangerous now.
6.Speaking of scoring, the final score is: -1 * our opponent’s life total at the end of the game. It does not matter how they got there, only the net total matters.
7.Finally, there is some discretion as to whether a slower deck that does more damage is preferred over a faster deck that does much less. In general, we have passed up turn 1 shock pass for large amounts on turn 2-3 this should be obvious, and there hasn’t been much conflict over this point, but if it does come up, we can make a judgement then.
For those who are new to the challenge, here are the writeups of the past standard decks:
Panharmonicon here– Good explanation of how a ‘stage’ is constructed
Alternating Nova Stage here - has a full example of a stage with the scaling kept constant.
Last year's three stage deck: here - explains the different known 'types' of stages
Additionally, there are old Vintage writeups here
And an incomplete, but more current (though still outdated) one here - Has the TM explanation in it which is still relevant for vintage
Also recommended is some reading of the large number notation we will probably need to use for this deck. Specifically Conway Arrow Notation, and Chained Arrow Notation.
First I'll note some glaring holes left by rotation:
Leyline of anticipation we currently have no possible way to get flash.
Leyline of abundance we can't accelerate nearly as fast as before. Even T4 looks unlikely.
Omniscience/Bolas's Citadel we can't cheat on mana much at all.
and of course:
Thousand-year storm losing this means we lose probably our most powerful scaling tool
It's not all gloom and doom, we still have the powerful 'thaumabroom' combo from last standard:
Protean Thaumaturge + Sorcerer's Broom + enchantment creature (nyxbloom ancient) + sacrifice outlet (Gilded goose) + mana (gilded goose) + (+ flash enchantment etb)
Gives us a pretty good way of making many copies of any creatures.
We can also animate enchantments with Dance of the manse and make copies of legends like Orvar, the all-form by mutating onto them and then copying them. (humans and changelings need to become cowards via Kargan Intimidator)
Mar 25, 2021Yeah cutting niv doesn't look like it quite works. We can do a good chunk of what we need to for the next computation without flash, but I don't think it works out.Posted in: Magic General
Previews have started and there's not much yet, Confront the past is a way to reanimate planeswalkers for black mana, I think previous planeswalker combos needed to actually recast the walker, which caused some issues with chrome mox.
Some of the cards are more likely to be useful in the standard deck, Adrix and Nev, Twincasters can be mutated onto and start getting copied by Orvar, the All-Form (who we can also make non human with kargan intimidator) Together they do a pretty good Doubling season+Dual nature impersonation.
Mar 23, 2021Currently there are only 5 commands, and 2 planeswalkers spoiledPosted in: Magic General
The commands are disallowed by our computation restrictions (either by killing the boom keg or by being an instant, or both)
While the planeswalkers are both pretty useless. They are putting passives on them again, so having a planeswalker version of say Alhammarret's Archive is a possibility we can hope for.
Mar 23, 2021That seems to work, though I think Crucible might still be better if we use the Metalworker + Fuel for the Cause version? That way each tap is 2^X instead of X. We can leave one counter on it to proliferate back up.Posted in: Magic General
Either way, I don't think it matters much.
Edit: ah no, we get one more tap of Serra's Sanctum, so that's the way to go.
What are we (realistically) hoping for from StrixHaven?
Mar 21, 2021Should be, we get a landfall every time we go through the worldfire transition, easily more than enough for a layer.Posted in: Magic General
Mar 21, 2021Yeah, I don't see another cut. Though isn't Moraug, Fury of Akoum better than World at war? Because Maraug works in both of our main phases?Posted in: Magic General
Mar 21, 2021yeah, nothing seems to work other than Aegis Automaton..,Posted in: Magic General
Mar 20, 2021Hmm, looking for lifelink replacements, Gaurdian of the guildpact seems like it could be replaced with Mistmeadow skulk but that has protection from arcbond as well, so it cant keep them alive. But it does maybe open us up to using something other than Aegis automation for the W self bounce? like Shepherd of the flock though that doesn't quite work I think?Posted in: Magic General
Sigil of the new dawn also doesn't quite look like it works.
Together forever+ Basri's solidarity almost works but Together forever is its own counter source
Dusk // Dawn is maybe safe? If Dusk kills the boom keg, it also kills all of vedalken orrerys and coat of arms so we dont have flash or a working computation. (does require WW instead of W so might need an extra skulk?)
Edit: ack misread Dawn it returns stuff from the yard, so that's probably no good.
Maybe Time Wipe? Though double white is awkward there too.
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