Abzan Ascendancy is Very Sexy!

Welcome back. Look i have a post up on a Monday, it is about to get cold people! Hell freezing over cold.

Joking aside, i have been working on different versions of more or less the same list for a few hours now. Trying to find the right balance of this card and/or that card for the deck i hope to use to win Gameday this weekend. Deck choice is still in the air. I could swap to red/black agro or my warrior deck on a whim. But i really like the idea of a combo like creature deck at the moment. Something that punishes the control lists in the meta and that i hope can get around the different agro decks with good blocks and a trip to value town.

Here are the lists as they stand at the moment.

abzan_leap

abzan_rites

abzan_grim

abzan_abomination

Like i said they are just a few cards off. Grim Haruspex or Smothering Abimination for extra card draw? How many leaps vs Vamp Rites? Bone splinters or Collected Company and sacrifice dudes like merciless executioner?

I just don’t know for sure. I do know i want to explore this list this week big time.

You know that agro list is looking better and better.

You know i love to read your thoughts.

<3s

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Don’t Tell Anyone but I Have Been Brewing

Welcome back everyone. I know it has been a little while, man i feel like i am always saying that but i needed some not writing time to try and get some writing done.

A couple of things, first there should be a new podcast starting here in a day or two. I will let me explain things in the podcast but basically it will be all about Magic brewing and whatever else we feel like and i hope to have it out weekly. I hope.

Two, there are some sick possibilities mana wise in this new standard and mana bases are about to become the hard part of MtG- Standard.

The Gurobo clan has been brewing away for a little while now and i have to say there are some sick little decks out there and i am not sold on any one kind of build. Last standard i knew that my red/black token deck was the best deck for me. I did really well with that list the whole time it was legal and i think that it was a real contender. I might port something like it into modern. Who knows?

Right now we have 3 main lists in the works.

Remmie (aka the boy) is working on a Green/White morph list with a heavy life gain theme. Yes, Felidar Sovereign is a huge player in the list. It is not good, yet! But we are working on it. And if i had my way we would make a few quick tweaks and it would gain a ton but this is a lesion for us both (Remmie and I). He his learning how to find what cards are good and where the balance between “for fun” decks and “winning is fun” decks. Mean while i am learning how to let him do his own thing and find his own path. It is hard because well he is not good at things yet. He is 16? Almost 16. For all intensive purposes he is 16. Meaning he is a monster.

Updates to the red/black token deck. I lost a few things, Goblin Rabblemaster and Stoke the Flames being the main ones. Dragonmaster Outcast, Hangarback Walker and Molten Vortex help to fill the void. Not sure how good it is yet. But i bet it is fairly solid.

My main focus is on a 5 color Collected Company list, seems good enough for next weekend but i might need to add some more interaction to the list. It is not the fastest kill ever. Might be fine vs anything other then the huge life gain deck. But the real trick with it comes down to the mana base and do i want to add in a Bring to Light tool box. Right now i am not using them but i might need to go for it. It would make the sideboard much much MUCH sweeter. I want to jump into the trickiest part the mana base.

4 wooded foothills
4 windswept heath
2 polluted delta
2 flooded strand
1 forest
1 island
1 mountain
1 plains
2 canopy vista
2 cinder glade
2 prairie stream
1 sunken hollow
1 smoldering marsh

aka “What is left in my deck?” and “What do i need to find now?”

But i think this covers the mana base fairly well. I can Company on 4 with ease. If i have a 1 drop (the only one atm is Warden of the First Tree you should be able to play it with out too many issues and hitting most 3 mana dorks is simple enough on curve but 4 is most likely. I have learned a few things: 3 Catacomb Sifter is 1 too many, Evolutionary Leap is in fact huge win more card when you have time to pair it with Yasova Dragonclaw.

I will try and have a finished deck list for you soon but the above mana base should get you started on your own 5 color adventure well enough.

Magic players, if you were to build a Bring to Light tool box sideboard what are your must haves? What silver bullets do you add to the main deck? I will take a look at the 5 color winners from last big standard event and again post PT this coming weekend, but i want to know your thoughts.

<3s

Temur Molten Vortex

Sunday night while i was buying catnip to make a spirit catman my bestie in Dungeons and A-holes, i also was having a Facebook conversation with Travis. For those that don’t know Travis he is a Magic player that tends to think on the edges of what most people thing of as good deck design. Also he is a huge troll, that is just his thing. If he can get you to think about something by poking you with his words he will do so at almost all costs. Ie, Troll. One last thing about Travis, he will be my podcast partner for a new show coming soon. Locking down a recording time is our main hangup but i hope to have that ironed out real soon.

Anyway, Travis and i were bouncing around a deck list he has been rocking for a few weeks now and doing fairly well with at his local store. This is what he sent me over a couple of messages.

4 molten vortex

4 magmatic insight
3 anger of the gods
4 monastery siege
2 days undoing
3 treasure cruise
1 volcanic vision

1 alhammarret’s archive

2 keranos god of storms

36 lands

In another window i jump over to Tapout.com and fill this mess in and try a few practice hands. If he is winning like he says he is based off out out my practice hands went he is sacrificing kittens to a forgotten god in a cave somewhere.

So between roleplaying moments of amazing stuff, i hit him back with a few cards.

Alchemist’s Vials
Pyromancer’s Goggles
Radiant Flames – with a message to add a third color
Sarkhan Unbroken

After a moment the following comes in, make a list set it up how you think it would be best and i will take a look in depth.

These are my thoughts for a list.

4 Molten Vortex

4 Magmatic insight
2 Atarka’s Command
4 Tormenting Voice
4 Radiant Flames
3 Treasure Cruise
2 Ravaging Blaze
2 Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy
3 Sarkhan Unbroken

4 Alchemist’s Vials
2 Pyromancer’s Goggles

34 not lands meaning 26 lands, i think that 26 should be more then enough. but if not i can see adding in a few more by cutting the commands but i like idea of using them to jump to 4 lands as well as sneaking in some damage.

So why temur? Well Radiant Flames really needs 3 colors of mana on hand to do max damage to wipe the board and Sarkhan Unbroken is a non creature way to draw cards while fixing mana and or make big flyers to get in damage or block as needed. Ie he is the stall this deck wants. Jace allows us to rebuy our much needed spells since we want such a large land count. And well green sideboard cards are sweet right now.

The real question is can we go Mardu? Yes, yes we can the mana is about the same as Temur. With the loss of our planeswalkers, cruise and Atarka’s Command we gain, a slew of wraths, two of the best removal spells post rotation Murderous Cut and Crackling Doom as well as two cards i feel will really shake up standard post rotation Deflecting Palm and Mardu Charm. Getting in for a few points as your opponent ramps to a big fattie then palm them back with their own man or Cdoom it down is a thing i fully expect in the coming months.

It is a good time to be into Magic. It is a good time to buy boxes if you don’t play and sit on them. This next set of cards will be like printing money unlike any set we have seen before and i hope we wont see again for a long while.

Okay, i need to get to bed soon and i want to finish the MTG Potpourri cast, don’t think i am going to make it but i want to try.

Comments are welcome

<3s

One of the Worse Times of the Year.

Standard format uses the two most recently-released blocks, as well as the current core set. When a new block is launched, the oldest block rotates out of the list. – MtG Mothershipsite

I hate standard rotation time, I feel it is one of worse times of the new for brewers. Well at least for me.  As the last few weeks of Standard start to wind down and the next cool cards start to come to light all i see are the babies that i haven’t had time to finish or play. I don’t play as much constructed magic as i could. Sure i play FNM’s (but i tend to draft at those) and whatever other tournaments we have at my local shop but i don’t travel to play. Not really. And since i don’t play Magic online other then the odd draft, i am often left with dozens of minor regrets at the end of the Magic year on decks not played.

I will miss you babies that never were

Sure there is the excitement of whats to come, but i don’t have those cards. The don’t sit in my binders calling out to me. They are just cards on a screen. Like books on a shelf when you have no time to read them. Great possibilities, possible flops but until they are in my hands they are just dreams yet to come.

Think that is part of the reason Modern is such a popular format. People just want to keep rocking their favorite cards. And i understand that feeling even if modern is just too big of a format for me most of the time. But in a few weeks this feeling will be long past and my focus will be on all the new and exciting possibilities happening all a round us. But for now i long to hang on to what is here.

Thinking of you Theros block.
<3s

Last Hurrahs of the Best Standard I Can Remember.

I have decided for this last hurrah of the current standard environment to only draft in FNMs if the standard constructed event fails to fire. Also i plan to take a new deck each week. This includes some revamped old favorites as well as some builds that are completely new that i feel can only happen in this window. And the last few weeks of living this plan has been a lot of fun. That being said not all of these decks have been good. Winning at least 1 FNM while crashing and burning in others. But that is why the family is drafting, they can carry team Gurobo even if i am not around to do so.

Also i want to add that i was able to take down my shops Gameday tournament with my Red/Black Impact Tremors deck. Totally unchanged for the expected meta. I just played to even out the field of players so we wouldn’t have to deal with bye rounds. My only loss on the day was due to a Mardu dragon deck with a turn 2 Soulfire grand master each game followed up with a Draconic Roar WITH A revealed Dragon for a huge tempo/live swing. Game 2 i was able to push threw this until my opponent was able to Anger of the Gods wiping both board (mostly mine) while gaining 21 life. I held back just in case and started to recover. But a second Anger off the top for my opponent knocked me out of the game and it was just me drawing hoping for a removal spell for his 4/4 dragon… But i was able to make the top 8 and win out. Thankfully my son took down the Mardu player with his blue devotion/artifact deck.

So lets look at the next build i have in process.

I really want to rock a crazy enchantment list while i can. Herald of the Pantheon, Sigil of the Empty Throne and Starfield of Nyx just seem insane mix in a few cards from left field like the Font of XXXs from Journey into Nyx as to control when my enchantments are men and when they are not as well as sweet value cards like Courser and Eidolon of Blossoms.

Here is what i have so far.

Font of Fertility
Font of Vigor
Suspension Field/Silkwrap some combo of these with the others in the sideboard for games 2-3
4 Herald of the Pantheon
Banishing Light
Bow of Nylea
Courser of Kruphix
Eidolon of Blossoms
Sigil of the Empty Throne
Starfield of Nyx

This leaves me with a few slots, 5ish… Unless we do some trimming. If we want to start adding things like Commune with the Gods, Kruphix’s Insight or End Hostilities we start needing to make those cuts. Let alone making room for some way to return our Starfield in the event they get hit other then the Bow of course….

So how do flesh this mess out? We start by looking at our meta. My meta is a hand full of agro decks. Slikwraps and FoVs should handle the early game well enough. If we make it to the mid/late game we should be golden vs them. An Abzan midrange list. As long as we have a Banishing Light for Elisabeth and can recover/stop an Ugin from destroying us we should be okay. Ugin makes me want to splash blue for Disdainful Strokes.. Blue and/or Red is an fairly easy splash thanks to fetches and the FoFs…. Wonder if we want to take advantage of that? I also have a few Artifact decks floating around for the most part i just need to keep my life total high and use the removal enchantments to take things out. There is a few control decks about but they shouldn’t be too much of a problem unless they manage to wipe when i can’t unman my maned up enchantments. Yeah that was a crazy line, but i like it.

I know i want 2 End Hostilities, 3 Kruphix’s Insights. I would like 3 Reclaim and some number of the Green Siege… Sigh. Big mana spells need fast mana if you want them to hit the board quickly.

So lets crunch some numbers.

Is 8 targeted removal spells and 2 sweepers enough/Too much or just right? it feels right to me. You want those 8 early. Most of the time you will be happy to draw 2 or more a game. Hell you might HAVE to draw 3+ to win some games.

Are the 4 FoVs right? I am not sure. I want at least 1 a game. But i also want at least one Starfield and with 3 Kruphix’s Insights and potential drawing from Eidolon of Blossoms it seems safe to trim here.

Could we go below 24 lands? Don’t think so. We want land. In most match ups the more the better. Hell we might want to trim to go up to 25 or 26…

Think i will try it out as

Font of Fertility
Font of Vigor
Suspension Field/Silkwrap Think you go 3/1 Silkwrap/Field
4 Herald of the Pantheon
Banishing Light
Bow of Nylea
Courser of Kruphix
3 Kruphix’s Insights
Eidolon of Blossoms
2 Frontier Siege
2 End Hostilities
Sigil of the Empty Throne
Starfield of Nyx

4 Green/White fetch
3 White/blue Fetch
3 Green/Red Fetch
2 Green/White Temple
4 Plains
6 Forest
2 Island

4 Disdainful Strokes
2 Stubborn Denial
4 The other of the Suspension Field/Silkwrap
Reclaim
1 Mountain
1 Font of Ire

There will be some games where we wont be able to win fast enough with the Sigil’s 4/4 fliers. If we can get a little FoI engine running we might be able gain the needed reach that surprises our opponents. I mean 6 mana for 5 damage to the face is just bad. 10 for 10 is better but still bad. 15 for 14 also bad but if you are making 4/4 fliers each turn and it is uncountable it might be better.  If it is bad these last two slots are FoVs for the rush match ups where we are just buying time.

Thoughts?

<3s

Why is no one on Blood-Chin Fanatic???

Late last night instead of going to bed at a normal time for an adult i stayed up too late and brewed with my pal, Travis. Brewing for those that don’t know, is when you try and build a “Magic” deck from pet cards you might want to play with in a deck. I have to explain this as my wife who plays Magic and knows that people think of and call me a brewer asked me what i was doing last night and when i said “Brewing with Travis” she was confused. I can only assume she thought it was some weird gay/sex/internet thing, to which i would say… It could be???? But we were working on magic deck lists.

We started off with the core idea of what to play in standard ques on Magic Online. We are both tired of just drafting all the time and not having anything to just to have fun with. We are also broke as fuck and so the idea of budget builds happened and we went from one amazing build around me card to the next until i remembered that i had bought some Blood-Chin Fanatics awhile back and that they are super cheep online. Oh also add in the requirement of the deck being alive post rotation….

And the rest was almost a flood of a list.

Creature (28)
4x Bloodsoaked Champion

2x Battle Brawler
4x Blood-Chin Fanatic
4x Blood-Chin Rager
4x Chief of the Edge
1x Chief of the Scale

3x Mardu Strike Leader
3x Grim Haruspex
3x Brutal Hordechief

Instant (4)
2x Harsh Sustenance
2x Secure the Wastes

Sorcery (2)
2x Swift Reckoning

Artifact (3)
3x Sigil of Valor
Land (23)
4x Caves of Koilos
3x Evolving Wilds
6x Plains
2x Scoured Barrens
8x Swamp

This thing might be a monster. It uses some of my personal favorite cards from the last block. Everyone is a Warrior except the  Grim Haruspex. But he adds some much needed card draw to the list. I wanted something that didn’t involve taking turns off like a Read the Bones would and would also play into they whole sac a guy thing. Seems like a natural fit.

What i really like about this list is how the deck goes both wide and tall using cards like Blood-Chin Fanatic, Brutal Hordechief and Sigil of Valor. Just picture how you might “go off” you have a few guys out put on some early pressure but now your opponent is hiding behind a few men of her own but you have to push through for the last few points. But if you alpha she can crack back for the game…. Then you topdeck lets say the Fanatic. All your guys become drain lives. Just think about what happens if you also have a Sigil of Valor… Equip attack with 1 guy, becomes a 6/6+ eat a blocker sack for a 12 point swing. Tasty.

You all know how i feel about the Brutal Hordechief and the Mardu Strike Leader, love them!!!

The best thing? The whole deck costs less then 10 tixs online. 8.something according to tappout.net. Is it a winner? Idk. Does it look like it can hold its own and steal games from people playing everything from mono red burn to the control decks? Yep. Seems to have solid game against most decks i can think of… Even has a little game vs turn 2 5/5 flying artifacts.

Will it be a thing post rotation? Shrug… But agro with synergy tend to eat new decks for awhile at least and by then i hope to have enough “thingies” to move up in deck. It also happens to be something i can play in paper fairly easily and get a ton of reps in with in a small amount of time.

As always love your feed back.

<3s

Sphinx’s Tutelage; aka only a Matter of Time until my Son Asks for a Mill Deck. part 23

Last night i had a most disturbing dream that kept me awake a lot of the night, in my half asleep daze my mind drifted to Magic as it often has done lately and deck lists floated past my eyes.

SphinxsTutelage

Sphinx’s Tutelage i think is a sleeping powerhouse. This guy might just the Magic version of the second coming. Lets look at a standard list that came to be last night as well as how i can use it to tweak one of my modern decks.

In standard there is actually a lot of directions we can go to abuse this card. Two that game to mind straight away are an enchantment themed Herald of the Pantheon/Eidolon of Blossoms and Secret Plans/Morph decks. I think that the Herald of the Pantheon/Eidolon of Blossoms is a little stronger. However, if you look at some of my past Morph decks you can see just how many cards they can draw almost at will. This could just become a sideboard option for those style of decks.

4 Herald of the Pantheon
Courser of Kruphix
Eidolon of Blossoms
Font of Fertility
4 Nylea’s Presence
4 Font of Fortunes
Font of Vigor

4 Banishing Light
4 Sphinx’s Tutelage
Sigil of the Empty Throne
Starfield of Nyx

22 lands
4 white/blue fetch
4 white/green fetch
6 forests
4 islands
3 plains

Kruphix’s Insight is another card you could add here. I am hoping that the raw card draw is good enough. everything thing says draw a card more or less.

While i was looking for the links for cards another idea came to mind, Evolutionary Leap with Elvish Visionary/Jeskai Sage/Palace Familiar/Wall of Mulch/Fate Foretold and Military Intelligence…. This one could be amazing also. I am just not sold on its ability to win with out the Tutelage. Where i think that the above list could win with out its named card.

In Modern, i play a Swan’s Skred deck, it is not bad just lots of counters and burn spells relying on Swans of Bryn Argoll and things like seismic assault or isochron scepter + a burn spell to finish the game. This deck might have just got a new win con. Painter’s Servant + Sphinx’s Tutelage ….

Painter's Servant

Yes, i am modern legal!

Sure it is a multi card combo to win on the spot. But adding a few to a dedicated control/draw list should be easy. Now i don’t have an exact list of what i am currently playing i can get close.

4 Lightning Bolt
4 Skred
4 Anger of the Gods or Pyroclasm (do you feel like you need it cheap or to exile?)

4 Serum Visions/gitaxian probe

4 Remand
4 Mana leak
3 Cryptic Command

4 isochron scepter – Snapcaster Mage if you got them

4 Swans of Bryn Argoll
2 Painter’s Servant
4 Sphinx’s Tutelage

Snow lands and fetches.

Before i would run 6 bounce spells and plan to grind people out with card advantage. But now i could just combo them out. Skred my Swans for 6, i draw 6, mill you for 12…. Untap, play painter… skred for 7, 1 draw 7 you mill 14 did you flip lands? No? repeat….

Seems good.

<3s