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  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    Quote from SphinxP »
    Watching the pro tour...it seems like this deck would be very soft to Eldrazi. Chalice for 1 turn 1, beefy blockers turn 2 onwards, and lots of Eldrazi scions seems like a recipe for beating what goblins is trying to do.
    A turn 2 Thought-Knot Seer is absolutely backbreaking against this deck, which isn't saying much because that's pretty good against most decks...but man is it powerful.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    Unfortunately I didn't have enough time to goldfish enough games to check on potentially wasted G from BTE. I did, however, get to play at my Modern FNM yesterday. The event was 6 rounds, and below is the list I played:

    There's definitely potential here, but there is much room for improvement. I finished 3-3, which was better than I expected. I beat GR Tron, Infect, and UB Mill (deck was sweet), and lost to Jeskai Control, Mono B Eldrazi, and Zoo due to a few mistakes. Aside from my hastily put together sideboard, I did want to share a few things.

    Mana availability - Perhaps from a design flaw, but I always wanted more mana. While access to SSG can grant explosive starts, sometimes the apes just left me hanging. There were a few games where I was stuck on one mana (missing land drops on turns 2-6 against Tron) and access to another land would have secured me a win. Mana screw happens, but I can definitely build this deck better. My next goldfish test will be to remove SSG entirely and move toward 19-20 lands total.

    Devastating Summons - This is a great finisher, giving two triggers to FSD (even with saccing zero lands) and triggering Prowess on MSS. Three land seems to be the sweet spot for this card, allowing you to follow up with either Bushwhacker. However having multiples in hand is not the greatest, so if I choose to continue with Summons I may only run a singleton copy. Feels good man.

    BTE and Git Probe - The green mana from BTE was wasted a total of 3 times across the 6 rounds (16 games total). In my opinion this isn't too terrible, but that is still mana left unspent that could be turned into potential damage. Gitaxian Probe wiffed. A lot. While getting information and drawing a card for 2 life is great, I think there are better options out there for this slot. I plan on testing a combination of Probes and Mutagenic Growths to get a feel for where I want to be. Fortunately Manamorphose has been great in testing and in real games.

    Reckless Bushwhacker - When its good, its REALLY good. When it sits in your hand with nothing to cast beforehand, its extremely lackluster. I'm sure there were some incorrect plays I did last night when attempting to set up Reckless, but I can say that unless you're running a ton of ways to trigger surge I believe the correct number to run is 3. I consider Reckless, like Devastating Summons, a finisher or a way to get in that last damage to secure a win the next turn. With that being said, I did not find multiple Reckless helpful.

    I also plan on toying around with Matter Reshaper and some lords, thinking Rakdos colors.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    Quote from SphinxP »
    For everyone running BTE: what are you actually casting with the green mana it generates, and with what frequency/consistency? Is Atarka's/RB/manamorphose enough to reliably spend that mana, or is it ending up being wasted a large percentage of the time?

    In my own playtesting, there are times when there is excess G from BTE but they seem few and far between. Once I do around round of goldfishing I'll be sure to mark them down. I'm not great with numbers but I can contribute to the thread by counting those scenarios. There are similar situations with Manamorphose where I am unsure if I want to add RR or RG when I don't have Goblin Bushwhacker, Reckless Bushwhacker, or Atarka's Command already in hand. Perhaps that is incorrect play, but sometimes I feel I need to dig to get the most out of a turn. Normally I lean on RR, because I only run 2 Command and the chance of topping either Bushwhacker is greater, but there is the awkward chance that I topdeck the command and have to wait till next turn to cast it because I filtered the mana incorrectly. Those situations are also small in number, but they feel worse than wasting excess BTE mana.

    I wanted to add that I have removed Goblin Grenade and a singleton Reckless from my list in favor of 2 Devastating Summons. In testing, DS works very well FSD and Monastery Swiftspear, especially when followed up with any Bushwhacker. The majority of the time I have floated 3 mana, cast DS for 3 lands, and followed up with either Bushwhacker for great effect.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    Hello all! I've been lurking around here for quite a while after finally taking the plunge into the Modern format. Had to use my Goblin Guides somewhere, right? I want to give a big thank you to everyone who contributes to the thread as it has been very helpful in my own playtesting and deckbuilding! The list I'm running is a slight variant of the "Goblin Surge" deck a page or two back.

    Anyway, I figure I'd chime in on the below:
    Quote from Rogomatic »
    SSGs are useful for 2 reasons: (1) they pitch to Fury of the Horde, and a Mountain doesn't, and (2) they allow for explosive T1s with BTE. If you don't run any of those two, then you probably need 0 SSGs. If you only run BTEs, there's still a good argument for removing part if not all of them.

    One thing that's worth pointing out after my last round of testing is that Goblin Grenade has pretty poor synergy with both Monastery Swiftspear and Reckless Bushwhacker. Obviously, under normal circumstances you want to sac for grenade after combat -- which means you're leaving damage from the Swiftspear on the table, and if you choose to kick Bushwhacker with a grenade, you've reduced the grenade to a Bolt.

    My experiences with SSG is that I personally never want multiples in hand, especially while trying to "go off". My list runs a 15/3 Land/SSG split. I prefer this to the 14/4 split because when attempting to draw into other spells via Gitaxian Probe and Manamorphose, I'd rather not have SSG pop up. While I can't deny the usefulness and overall burst potential of the ape, I do believe the correct number for this kind of deck is at least 3. Can anyone offer some insight or feedback for running 3 to 4 SSG?

    In regards to Goblin Grenade, I completely agree with Rogomatic here. Grenade is surely powerful, but I imagine that T3 decks that run playsets of Swiftspears, BTE, and Reckless may have some difficulties resolving the grenade when needed. Running a playset of SSG, coupled with the Grenades, should make them easier to resolve.
    Posted in: Aggro & Tempo
  • posted a message on Cloudy, With a Chance of Goblins (UR - Mizzix)
    I like the list, similar to my Niv-Mizzet 2.0 Goblins into Dragons deck. This list however seems a lot more plausable. I feel I should mention it, because Mizzix's second ability does reduce the cost, Dragonshift would be glorious as another powerful, but Izzet flavorful, addition to your arsenal.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Xenagos, the God of Double Damage Beatdown
    Quote from plushpenguin »
    Oh, I also just noticed that as a side bonus, Frontier Siege adds even more mana if you get an additional main phase off of an extra combat step.

    This...this is good.

    Just so I don't waste a post, I'm now looking to add Relentless Assault to the deck but another card came to mind as an additional combat phase enabler, what are your thoughts on Fury of the Horde? It has the potential to become an extra combat phase after a big draw.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Xenagos, the God of Double Damage Beatdown
    Quote from plushpenguin »
    The important part about Nature's Will in comparison to cards like Bear Umbra is that you can pay for the effect as setup before your first attack. With Bear Umbra, you need to either have 4 extra mana to pay during your turn (hard), or you need to play it the turn after you already attacked with it. In either case, you risk blowout by removal spell. Granted, with the former, you need to connect to get the bonus, but that usually isn't a problem in this deck considering how humongous your power stats on all your trampling threats become.

    This card reminds me of the very first build that ran Sword of Feast and Famine. The land untap was really really good. The pro-green preventing me from targeting with Xenagod buffs wasn't. So I have good expectations for Nature's Will.

    I may not be understanding you correctly, but both Bear Umbra and Nature's Will require you to play them before you attack in order for them to get the triggers. Doesn't matter which card you play, you will need four mana regardless to cast it and also need a beater on board to get it going. Bear Umbra does require you to have a target in order for it to work, and yes there is the chance that you open yourself up for a two-for-one before resolution, but being able to untap your mana before you attack opens up different instant speed options that you can take advantage of. For example, while you do not play Hellkite Charger, after re-reading it the ability only triggers during the declaration of attack. Should you not have the mana to spend right then and there, you won't be able to activate the ability for an additional combat phase. Unfortunately, Nature's Will doesn't work in this case. Before damage is dealt, you also may not be able to play other instant speed options like Temur Battle Rage or Savage Beating, which again Nature's Will doesn't help with. It really seems to come down to whether you prefer to use instant speed options, or utilize strong sorcery speed cards in your second main phase like the aformentioned Relentless Assault. In your case Nature's Will does seem like a solid choice and I look forward to reading your test results.

    BONUS: As an alternative to Frontier Siege (Khans choice) and because I like jank, I'd like to know what you think of Elemental Resonance as an alternative four mana "ramp" option. It competes with other notable ramp cards like Oracle of Mul Daya, Explosive Vegetation, and of course Nature's Will. This card came to mind while flipping through my EDH box when assessing Bear Umbra. With Aura cards you want to choose resilient targets to avoid getting two-for-one'd. In this deck, Elemental Resonance has a great indestructible target with Xenagos. While not as safe as pure ramp options like Explosive Vegetation, getting 3RG every main phase one seems pretty great.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Xenagos, the God of Double Damage Beatdown
    Now that I think about it, I should just try out Nature's Will instead.. I need to play it before my attacks, but everything turning into a pseudo-Rapacious One seems too good to pass up.

    Nature's Will has the obvious synergy with both Aggravated Assault and Hellkite Charger. Bear Umbra works in a simliar way but untaps your lands before damage. Great on Hexproof beaters, but not so great on others.

    Speaking of 4 mana "ramp" spells, I've recently added From Beyond to my deck (which has yet to be updated). It has worked great in the two games I have played with it, creating blockers, getting that extra mana when needed, and being able to replace itself by tutoring for Rapacious One, Conduit of Ruin, and Void Winnower. Since I no longer have need for Awakening Zone I may bring in another extra combat phase card or Nature's Will/Bear Umbra.

    I have yet to pick one up, how has Greenwarden of Murasa been?
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Xenagos, the God of Double Damage Beatdown
    Glad to see you're still writing up on Xenagod. I've recently taken the plunge into Modern (missed my copies of Goblin Guide I guess), however I've still been competing in the EDH league at my LGS regularly. I'm still a big fan of Realm Seekers but it has the same problem as Multani, Maro-Sorcerer in that when Realm Seekers comes into your hand late game and you need to play it, its less effective. Even if one player has been eliminated, Seekers gets shorted on it's overall effectiveness. The P/T will almost always be less than it would if it came down mid-game, and later on you should have the desired lands/trample enablers you need to make your beats count. Don't get me wrong, Realm Seekers is still phenomenal as your first or second beater drop and this reason alone is why I continue to use it. When its good, its really good.

    I do agree with your statement of mana consumption. In my opinion, without the aid of Sneak Attack and other cheat into play cards, Xenagod decks want to play beaters and when you aren't playing beaters you should be ramping. Simple and effective right? It should be, but as I'm sure you have noticed you also have to keep a steady ramp:beater ratio in order for the deck to do what you want it to. I prefer to lean higher on the ramp side of the ratio so I always have something to do. This is just a personal preference, but if I'm not doing at least one thing a turn I'm not having as much fun. I'll play rampfatty.dec all day, but if you don't have your ramp you aren't playing your beaters. Mana Geyser is a great one shot effect to raise your mana up to absurd amounts and would play well with firebreathing creatures and getting to use the full effects of Savage Beating and Sieze the Day. I'd still rate it lower than Savage Ventmaw and Rapacious One though because those cards complete both of the basic tasks you want to do in one card. Against control players, the Geyser isn't going to do much work since they also play on your turn. If you find yourself playing against a lot of tapout style decks give it a try. What are your thoughts on Dramatic Entrance?

    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Xenagos, the God of Double Damage Beatdown
    Quote from plushpenguin »
    Current update on the chopping block:

    The two "worst" fatties:
    Managorger Hydra - Very high variance. Awesome early. A bit less awesome late.
    Inferno Titan - Still quite solid, but I think we can do better

    Bane of Progress
    One mana dork
    Cultivate is already temporarily out for testing

    Desired adds:

    Explore (I have a land count that can support this)
    The new super E-wit

    Any other cards that might seem good as replacements? I know that there are more damaging fatties out there, but all of them either require wolf run support or cheat support in this build. Vorapede or Realm Seekers? The latter hits very unreliably early, but can tutor up its own evasion and use it if we are on at least six lands.

    Dragonlord Atarka? It has mass evasion and clears out a fair number of tokens, but doesn't offer too much else.
    Not sure what you're testing in place of Cultivate, but I do recommend giving Explore a try. It isn't super awesome good, but certain necessary utilites in EDH usually aren't (Harmonize, Ramp, Mana Rocks, etc.). I have found it is useful in most stages of the game, especially if you need to unclog your hand after a big draw spell.

    Vorapde has shown decent results so far. The resiliency is nice and like Woodfall Primus you can double dip with Greater Good. Vigilance is great against counterswings, too. You don't seem to have an issue with fixing, so the triple G shouldn't pose an issue.

    I would argue that Realm Seekers is a meta inclusion. The more draw power your group has, the better Seekers is. Everyone likes to draw cards, and I have yet to drop Seekers for less than 15/15. It can fetch it's own evasion, but also other utility lands if you need them. It requires some work to get going, so don't think of it as a beater. Realm Seekers should be treated as a utility creature first and a beater second.

    Unfortunately I can't say much for it, but maybe test Dragonlord Atarka in place of Inferno Titan as it offers a similar ETB effect but also has two forms of evasion and has two more P/T for only one more mana. I am planning on picking one up myself, but the price ($) is pretty high at the moment. Sorry for the lack of card tags, posting from a phone.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Xenagos, the God of Double Damage Beatdown
    Quote from plushpenguin »
    Thoughts on new spoiler:

    4GG Greenwarden of Murasa:

    ETB regrowth and on death you can CHOOSE to exile it to regrowth another card.
    It's a six drop and doesn't have trample but it's big enough that you can try and force people's removal on it. Also it's an easy conduit for card draw. Best buds with Flameshadow Conjuring. I think it is worth trying.

    I like it as a quasi-double Eternal Witness, will most likely replace Creeping Renaissance in my build. I agree with you as a draw conduit, this guy is just begging to be sacced to Greater Good.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Xenagos, God of Revels
    Cutting the Resonator did feel a bit awkward so I'm testing a swap with Fatal Frenzy, even though I am very fond of it. All of the cards from the big change saw play and were great, so I feel the deck is headed in the right direction. I'm testing the following changes as well:

    -Terra Stomper +Ruric Thar, the Unbowed
    -Heroes' Bane +Hunter's Prowess
    -Elemental Bond +Fierce Empath
    -Borborygmos Enraged +Akroma, Angel of Fury
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Niv-Mizzet Dracogenius Day of the Dragonshift
    Quote from kherkeep »
    in my opinion you need more thing to give haste to creature because if you play Descent of the Dragons and then somebody play Wrath of God you wil cry. So Fervor or Hammer of Purphoros could be great
    That's a valid point. Non-creature options are best, so unfortunately things like Urabrask the Hidden and Ogre Battledriver didn't make the cut. Hammer looks especially nice as it gives me something to do late game with land and is also tutorable with Fabricate.

    EDIT: After some thought, Ogre Battledriver can still come down early and do some work so I brought it in.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Niv-Mizzet Dracogenius Day of the Dragonshift

    This is a deck idea that I've been toying with since Dragonshift became legal. The basic idea is to field as many tokens as you can, and succesfully cast an overloaded Dragonshift, Day of the Dragons, Hellion Eruption or Descent of the Dragons to pull off a win. Plan B is to overrun the board with tokens or burn the table out with Purphoros, God of the Forge or Impact Tremors. Other notable cards include Goblin Bombardment and Outpost Siege as insurance against boardwipes, Clone Legion and Rite of Replication to generate an obsene amount of tokens with creatures like Emrakul's Hatcher, and Dragon Tempest which allows you to bypass the combat phase for plan A with Descent of the Dragons. Feedback is appreciated.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Xenagos, God of Revels
    The first day of the league was great fun. I learned a bit about what the "restricted" pods bring to the table as well as what people do and don't like. Unfortunately for me, I haven't played in many semi-competetive magic games since Innistrad rotated out so my nerves were a bit shakey, and because of a missed trigger I gained 0 points for the day, so lesson learned. The deck was tested throughout the entirety of the weekend, and there are some much needed changes to be made if I want to be able to compete more effectively in the league, and make the deck just plain easier to pilot. This will be the biggest change I've made to the deck since inception. As Churchill put it, "To improve is to change. To be perfect is to change often". Let's get to it.

    -Jungle Basin and Dormant Volcano + 2 Mountain
    These two karoos are better suited toward mono colored decks. While getting two mana from one land is powerful (Temple of the False God), I very often found myself with either of these cards in hand and unable to play them until I found a suitable basic land. As a product of either a lack of early game ramp or fixing, these cards didn't do much for me. I also found myself short red mana some games, so in come two basics.

    -Nissa's Pilgrimage +Talisman of Impulse
    Being exclusive to forests, I believe you're only getting real value from this if you either have spell mastery active, which doesn't happen too often in this deck, or if you're playing mono G. Talisman should lower the curve of the deck and also gives access to Red.

    -Garruk's Packleader +Drumhunter
    Packleader is a good card and may find its way back into the deck someday, but it does compete with Xenagod at the 5 CMC slot. If I have a beater ready to go in hand, I want to cast Xenagod ASAP. Sometimes Garruk's Packleader just sat in my hand because I needed to drop a beater and thus was, in my opinion, useless at that point. Drumhunter comes down earlier, has a chance of drawing a card at the end of every turn, and also gives some mana.

    -Mage Slayer +Flametongue Kavu
    I never found myself able to use Mage Slayer effectively, and I think Soul's Fire is actually a much better card for what it wants to do. Perhaps with a way of tutoring it up (Godo, Bandit Warlord) I would get more mileage out of it. However often times it sat in my hand or on the field, unable to equip becaues I didn't have the extra mana to do so. Flametongue Kavu comes in to give the deck more early game, which it severely lacked, and being able to shoot something for 4 will almost always be relevant.

    -Strionic Resonator +Oracle of Mul Daya
    Much like Mage Slayer, most of the time I didn't have the mana to make much use of Resonator. While extremely powerful, it often just sat there doing nothing. Perhaps when the deck is more fine tuned I will test it out again. For now, because I don't have access to Sensei's Divining Top or Sylvan Library, Oracle of Mul Daya comes in as a way to filter lands off the top of the deck. Drawing into lands turn after turn spells disaster for this deck. While she may telegraph what your next beater could be, I don't think it matters as it may very well eat a counterspell or removal before combat.

    -Nissa's Revelation +Life's Legacy
    I whiffed once on Nissa's Revelation, and it felt really bad. I'm hoping Life's Legacy will open up new ways for the deck to reliably draw cards. Much as I am averse to using Harmonize, its definitely on my radar as a draw option.

    -Hunter's Insight +Eternal Witness
    Insight is good, but I felt a severe lack of recursion in the deck. Unfortunately I don't have much in the way of green recursion, so in comes E Witness. As an attempt to make the deck more resilient to creature destruction, getting back a big creature sounds more effective than waiting to draw a new one.

    -Utvara Hellkite +Bramblecrush
    Staring down Karthus, Tyrant of Jund and having this in your hand really sucks, even moreso than Atarka, World Render. Utvara Hellkite is still a great card, but without a reliable way to cheat it into play I think it could be better used elsewhere. Bramblecrush adds another way to deal with permanents, specifically planeswalkers. JTMS's bounce hurts, and this is a good way to deal with it and many other threats.

    -Worldspine Wurm +Vorapede
    Ironically enough, I got to hardcast Worldspine Wurm over the weekend. Three times. I also got to live the dream of casting Temur Battle Rage on it, doing 60 damage in one go. Crossing that off my bucket list, Vorapede comes in as a resilient threat that drops early and also has inherent trample. Vigilance should prove useful against counterswings.

    -Hull Breach +Deglamer
    In an attempt to diversify my removal, Deglamer comes in as another way to deal with Gods. Prior to the change, the only option the deck had was Chaos Warp.

    -Flamerush Rider +Explore
    Tried Flamerush Rider a few times, I wasn't really a fan. The potential is there, but I often wished it was something else. Explore comes in for testing.

    -Cultivate +Wickerbough Elder
    Due to some of the prior changes, I felt the deck had a bit too much ramp into it and not enough action. Wickerbough Elder is also coming in for testing.

    -Arcbond +Blasphemous Act
    One of the way to gain points in the league is to deal the most damage from a single source for the entirety of the game. Infinites do not count, and cards that kill the entire table also do not count. Arcbond was fun when I got to play it and I highly recommend giving it a shot! However since it does nothing for points, I'm swapping it for Blasphemous Act as a board wipe option.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
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