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Treasure Cruisin' Gifts Storm
 
The Role of Ecosystems in Fantasy Worldbuilding
 
Life's Legacy: Delving into Delver
  • posted a message on Ancestral vision bloodbraid elf
    I was actually wondering about this myself, but I just don't think AV is a card jund is in the market for. It would be easy to add one watery grave and 4 vision, which could be discarded to liliana/brutality - but for the rare times when you would actually cascade into it it just doesnt seem worth the effort. Just hope to cascade into eminently smoother, more playable k-command and liliana for your CA
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 10/02/18)
    Re: Lantern logistcal issues.
    I think there's a misconception that logistical issues only mean Eggs-style long turns. This isn't true. Top posed logistical issues of a different nature, as evidenced in its Legacy banning statement during April 2017. Specifically, Wizards had this to say about the card:
    https://magic.wizards.com/en/articles/archive/news/april-24-2017-banned-and-restricted-announcement-2017-04-24
    ...but Sensei's Divining Top comes with its own host of issues that center around the timely conclusion of matches in a tournament setting. The necessity of repeated Top activations to play the card slows down match play and leads to tournament delays.

    This does not apply to veteran Lantern players who are generally efficient with their turns. But it definitely applies to inexperienced Lantern players who have numerous activations to manage that in turn lead to tournament delays. Matches may not be concluding in a timely fashion when Lantern pilots are slowly puzzling through their lock pieces. Again, I don't think we've seen this issue yet because most Lantern players are very experienced with the deck and know shortcuts and how to quickly move through their steps. But as the deck takes off and we see more players trying it in major tournament settings, we may see worse players bog down games and lead to similar tournament delays.


    I'm really not seeing it. Lantern is not a case where you can ponder 3 times per turn and have to decide your next 3 plays etc (i.e. divining top with fetches). You normally have 1-3 mill rocks out and get to chose to mill 1-3 times and then end turn. That's it. You mill once, look at the top card that changed, decide whether to mill again. Can you go in the tank for 20 minutes thinking about it? I suppose, then in comes slow play rulings right? The majority of the time the decision to mill or not is incredibly easy.

    Also asked a friend who plays in a lot of GPs, he said rounds almost always go to time anyways, with an avg 15-20m wait from when time is called to the beginning of the next round (I assume most consumed by the 5 turns of various mostly non-lantern decks plus some time to process results and post pairings). So as far as I can tell, lantern is not a logistics question. Not even if we extend logistics to miscellaneous long turns, because there are really not many decisions to be made - "mill or not" is basically it, x the number of mill rocks in play. That might be complex in some situations but certainly not on average. You might as well say serum vision decks take too long because sometimes the player goes in the tank deciding what to do with the scry 2.

    And while I think most would consider it unfun-to-miserable to play against, or makes for "bad TV" this is subjective and not a banlist criteria (to date). It might tip the scales if it was close but this being the sole or even primary reason for hitting it with a ban would be a new precedent. Certainly wizards can decide tis is a new reason to ban cards, but we should not expect it. So can/should the deck be hit with a ban? Not yet, no. If it starts performing at a much higher rate and either stifles diversity or creates war-of-the-sideboards then we can talk.

    If/when the time comes to knock lantern down with a ban stirrings, whir, opal and bridge would all be in the conversation. Bridge would kill the deck but also remove a frustrating card from the format. Opal does splash damage to affinity. Stirrings does splash damage to tron. Whir is a pretty new card, and when we look at dredge they didn't ban prized amalgam or cathartic reunion even though those were the cards that cause the deck to cross the line so I doubt whir would be the choice.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 10/02/18)
    Whether or not a player concedes to the lock doesn't matter. The match has a timer of 50 minutes (or whatever the standard is for big tournaments). If a player wants to force a ridiculously long game 1 or 2 by not scooping that's their perogative - the game will still go to turns at 50m at which point it will likely be over in the usual 5-10m. Eggs was banned because it wasn't 5-10m for those last 5 turns - each egg player turn could be 20m long so extra turns could add upwards of 30-40 minutes to the round timer beyond the allocated amount. That is simply not how lantern works.

    The only way this is a problem is if rounds rarely actually go to time which I find hard to believe. As mentioned, every 30+ player prerelease I've gone to has pretty much every single round go to time. I assume tournaments with hundreds of players in the room, someone somewhere will usually go to time.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on [POLL] What cards do you want banned or unbanned in the February 12, 2018 announcement?
    What I'd like Long term:
    Unban in order: BBE, SFM, Preordain, Twin, Zenith, Seething Song, Dig, Artifact Lands
    Ban in order: Stirrings, Grapeshot, Opal

    What I'd like this b&r:
    Unban: BBE, SFM
    Ban: Stirrings

    What I expect this b&r:
    Unban: bbe
    ban: none
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 10/02/18)
    Can someone explain the lantern-going-to-time problem to me? I don't play in big tournaments, but I would just assume with hundred+ players almost invariably every round has someone go to time. Every 30-40 player prerelease I have gone to goes to time every round because somewhere in the room has a long match. Is it not the case that most rounds already go to time?

    Assuming it is the case that most rounds in a huge event go to time because somewhere out there in the dozens and dozens of matchups is a control mirror or a midrange slogfest, what difference does lantern being popular make? The rounds still go to time... okay... that would be no change. I feel like people are conflating lantern with eggs on this which seems wrong. The similarity between lantern and eggs is that they are artifact decks that are boring as **** to play against and have annoying win conditions.

    Eggs would get to time and get 2 or 3 chances to sacrifice and recur a bunch of artifacts trying to combo, taking 20 minutes. Lantern gets to time and goes "draw, go" each turn. I do not see lantern's 5 turns ever taking an inordinate amount of time, certainly no more than jund or jeskai control or whatever.

    TLDR; Lantern's individual turns are no worse than a midrange or control deck and are often way faster (draw-go). Lantern does not present a logistics issue because its last 5 turns cannot be excessively long.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on [Primer] Goblins
    The new firebrand goblin is almost never better than mogg fanatic and is often much worse.

    Assuming your opponent had no blockers when you play the card, it gets one point of haste damage through that mogg fanatic would not. It could be more if the haste triggers batallion or piledriver or you have lord effects - but a lot of the time its a conditional one extra damage over a fanatic as the potential upside.

    Now whats important is that goblins are in the business of turning guys sideways - mogg fanatic turns sideways as much as you want and still keeps its pinging effect alive. Firebrand? Exact opposite - you must give up the ping in order to swing. The number of situations where this is horrific are numerous but lets give a few;

    Opponent wraths.
    Opponent casts fatal push or electrolyze.
    Opponent flashes in snapcaster to block a chieftan or other x/2 (your fanatic can ping before blocks, your tapped firebrand looks on in sadness as your better goblin gets blocked and dies)
    Any block where one more point of damage would finish off a relevant blocker.

    And finally, when the only upside is haste you have to keep in mind that haste can be given to your fanatic by bushwhackers or chieftans, so sometimes your fanatic comes down with haste anyways.

    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    The rallier example above is indicative of the trouble I have. None of our cards are scary besides the combo and maybe voice vs interaction without removal. Dork into cobra rallier recur fetch is a common line - now what? You have five power that dies to a stiff breeze and five mana. You play felidar you flicker rallier for another fetch? Play saheeli and try to protect it with three chump blockers? Then you can Evo and combo except if they have any interaction the combo fizzles. Now you're four turns deep with five lands in a deck with few to no mana sinks - how does this turn into mid-range pressure? Swinging with rallier? Topdecking the single sun Titan?

    I get the combo it's just slow and vulnerable. I don't get the backup plan because it gets utterly stonewalled by goyf tasigur tks etc so how are you outgrinding abzan Jund jeskai control gds etc? They have better bodies more interaction and more CA. Are you grinding the linear decks because I don't see beating burn infect storm etc by poking for five over four turns.

    Anyways keep plugging away and I'll check in to see if there's a breakthrough now and then. I just can't see the path from here where the deck can combo, grind, race, and interact effectively based on the matchup. I had the same block w kiki chord where I'd draw voices and walls and get combod out or chords and dorks and get searing blazed off the face of the earth. Could very well just be playstyle and low tolerance for feeling helpless when I have an ostensibly good draw
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    I think the problem I have is just archetypal. The decks interaction is through creatures that are easily killed, and sparse at that. As a combo deck it's garbage compared to storm or ad nauseum, as a mid-range deck it's atrocious because the only interaction is basically voice of resurgence so you can't actually stop unfair things from happening (ie thoughtseize) and you have almost no true CA because unless you get to combo felidar might as well be cloudshift.

    We can't actually play a good mid-range game because pia and Kiran isn't path to exile and voice of resurgence isn't tasigur. The stars have to align for us to get there with voice tokens or four mana cloudshifts as opponent must play along - terminate voice so we can rallier it back or queller our rallier giving us a voice token or have no pressure on a saheeli etc.

    The cards are synergistic enough but the overall strategy of slow vulnerable combo propped up by dorks and voice into a grizzly bear hurloon minotaur beatdown as plan b just doesn't feel powerful enough vs what people are doing in most games.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    Yeah I'm really struggling to get anything resembling consistent results with this deck. If I don't see a turn 1 mana dork I am regularly one turn too slow with establishing the combo - I feel like I lose regularly with the combo in my hand but no time to deploy it. In other cases I have the combo but am almost certain my opponent has path/push/bolt to disrupt it if I go for it and get stuck that way trying to be patient and find a window to jam it.

    In other games I flood out with too many dorks and no payoffs, get stuck with evolution and only 1 drops to pod up, draw rallier with no fetches, draw all 3 of my 5 drops in the first 2 turns, draw felidar with a dork out and slime/thrag in hand having to do crap sequencing to max value, etc etc. I know some of this is just variance, but it feels like there are just so many ways that things go wrong and the deck has near-zero interaction. We are either comboing off or applying pressure - but while trying to be the beatdown with lotus cobra and voice of resurgence is better than doing it with wall of roots and wall of omens (kiki chord) its still a pretty anemic beatdown.

    So for me I think I'm shelving this for the time being. I love that the deck gives me a chance to play a bunch of cards I acquired for Modern but have never used otherwise: rallier, oath, evolution, saheeli, felidar and to some extent cobra (i have another cobra BTL brew). But I mostly play interactive toolbox decks, and if I'm going for a non-interactive combo deck this one just seems slow and vulnerable Frown

    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    Agree with above except keranos doesn't get pathed as you won't have devotion. Evolution is still bad vs counters so not a great plan to run tutor targets for that match unless they have application elsewhere as well.

    Does saffi eriksdotter do anything for the deck? I can't remember her combo but I thought she did something with rallier?
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    Its important to remember what tracker is doing in the deck. Its an alternate win condition that synergizes with dorks and a fetch heavy manabase. It is good vs midrange and control. If the deck is already good vs midrange and control then it would make sense to pass on tracker despite its reasonable synergy and instead play something that is good vs aggro and/or combo.

    I hope the argument is not that riverwise augur is good vs aggro or combo though, because it is not. So if you do not need more midrange/control cards in the deck (tracker) I would think the same logic applies to augur. If you do want this type of card, then the last page of compare-and-contrast may help you decide which card is better suited to this role.

    I'm going to try shaving 2 cobras. Its strange as its a card you do not want multiples of, but also dont really care if you draw or not. I think conventional wisdom is - play 4 if you want it every hand and are ok with multiples, play 3 if you want to see one copy, play 1 if its a tutorable card or you can otherwise dig to find it. I dont know what the rational for a two-of is; I guess you need one and want to hedge on thoughtseize? Cobra as a four of seems wrong; but conventional wisdom doesnt tell me whether I should be on 1, 2, or 3. Perhaps that is the definition of when to play 2? ;p

    I was also skeptical of lancers but I do feel like the option of turning evolution into saheeli could be worth quite a bit.

    Another card I was looking at is green gearhulk. Im not sure what problem it solves but its a pretty good flicker/clone target. I like having a tutorable "burn spell" whether its a rhino or hasty dragon or whatever. Right now if our opponent maths us and can survive the crackback I dont think theres anything we tutor to change that - perhaps pia and then sac thopters counts, but is mana intensive.

    Probably crap but worth remembering if we want this effect (I had considered wilt leaf liege earlier for similar role)
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    Tireless tracker is a stand alone threat that generates ca and acts as a mana sink. It is a removal magnet that improves the chances your felidar/saheeli can go off without a path or bolt - or theyve blown removal already on those cards and tracker is free to do his thing. He is really there for midrange and control matchups as he is too slow vs aggro, big mana, or combo.

    We are never evolving for tracker. Nor are we evolving for augur. Felidar flickering an oath is the same amount of dig if you're looking for saheeli. Or you could just do a rallier or sun titan value evolution - and if you really want a way to turn evolution into saheeli thats literally what thalias lancers will do, admittedly requiring a 3 drop to sac rather than a 2 but still.

    So if we're not podding into this we're hard casting it. The body is awful so you're paying four to best-case draw one loot two, with any actual value depending on you flickering it - again, felidar on oath is same amount of dig - or copying it. Would you be happy to minus 2 a planeswalker for a brainstorm? I wouldnt. Yes its technically a way to dig for the felidar but boy is it low value if you whiff.

    By all means try it, I would be happy to be wrong but the scenarios just dont add up to an improvement to me. As a three mana 1/1 id be listening since thats a turn 2 play and we could evo for it with a dork. The extra mana is not worth a point of power and toughness - esp if you're not running sun titan.

    Jadelight im less clear on. Would I play a three mana 4/3 with scry 2? Probably not? How about 3 mana 3/2 draw a card scry one? Probably? I have a hard time positioning what this card will be worth and how often flickering or copying will produce value.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    Removing oaths reduces your rallier and felidar targets, so keep that in mind. Riverwise augur looks horrid. Something like Painful truths wil flat out draw 3 for 3, and we're talking about evolving a voice or cobra into a 2/2 that draws one and possibly loots twice? I dont see it.

    The comments on cobra reflect my experience. I will try going down to two and see how that feels. As someone mentioned earlier everytime you mess with your mana dork distribution it has a big impact on whats good for the rest of the deck. If im on 2 cobra do I still want 3 rallier? If I go down to 2 rallier do I still want 3 felidar? If I go down to 2 felidar what am I doing with these 4 slots I just freed up?

    Ive also found the vomit hand onto table is often not great. Trying to punch through goyfs tasigurs seers and shadows is a tall order for a board of 3/2 and 2/1s and bleeding resources to chip them down is nonbo with the other plan of protecting saheeli while keeping a body out for evolution.

    I know in my bring to light brews id do a 3/3/3 split of bird hierarch cobra - but I was ok w 9 dorks in part because I had use for floods - glittering wish for bombs for example, and some pump effects - a sword or two and an increasing savagery and sometimes id run overrun or wilt leaf liege. In these saheeli decks the only residual value of a dork is podding it into a rallier or silver bullet and chump blocking.

    Which is to say - this deck feels like it can be explosive and it can grind but it can also fail to do the thing you want because you draw cards that support the other half (no dorks early, topdeck dorks late)
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    Does cobra really earn it's keep? Unless you have turn one dork it doesn't feel like it does much. You can Tapout for it turn two and if it survives and you have saheeli evolution you can turn three kill which dork saheeli felidar would do anyways?

    It has synergy w rallier and tracker and pods into guardian so I get it in principle, but in games it never seems to impress me and often feels bad to draw
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Saheeli Evolution/Chord
    It's still just a speed bump vs storm as they can easily grapeshot him tho no? Similar in Tron they may just have the pyroclasm brutality or ostone although if they don't I see him buying multiple turns and even soft locking since Tron without Karn or ugin is pretty weak. He's not the hard lock on Tron or storm that eidolon is to storm or kataki to affinity. But bonus points for stopping verdict cryptic company and chord!

    Here's the list I'm currently running online - I still feel like I'm hovering on the flex slots and maybe I always will:

    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
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