Yeah, that's a bit extreme. Many of the cards on the ban list aren't that obvious. And like I said, I've been wary of Stoneforge for years, having faced off against it in both Legacy and Standard. But as powerful as it is, I have to agree that the format could definitely survive its unbanning. It might not be the healthiest card, but it's also not the worst offender on the list.
Preordain would be nice, but I think we still have awhile before that card can come back under WOTC's terms. It would help control, sure, but most likely it would help out combo more. Being better at hitting land drops also means it's better at hitting combo pieces. And I think Serum Visions is still a perfectly fine cantrip. In some ways, I like it better.
- Registered User
Member for 9 years, 1 month, and 19 days
Last active Mon, Oct, 29 2018 22:31:54
- 2 Followers
- 2,214 Total Posts
- 237 Thanks
Apr 28, 2017Jitte is certainly part of the equation, but I don't think the lack of it makes SFM somehow weaker by multiples in Modern. Jitte isn't exactly crushing 4/5s and 8/8s, and there are plenty of other options to find with Stoneforge. Still, not having access to it weakens SFM slightly for sure. But again, we're basically ignoring the ThopterSword package, as well as the fact that 4 time out of 5, the Stoneblade player was getting Batterskull anyway. Even without thoptersword, I don't think downgrading Jitte to SoFaF is as much of a loss of power as one might think it is, especially when you consider how the formats are different.Posted in: Modern Archives
Perhaps "brick wall" was the wrong term. "Problematic obstacle" might be better. I wasn't trying to say that Death's shadow decks would suffer against SFM, just that the two strategies are comparably powerful. Death's Shadow still needs to win through damage, and while they can easily overrun or deal with a 4/4 vig, lifelinker, it's still a problem for them if they can't. Discard is an answer to everything sure. And Kcommand is a brilliant response to SFM in general. But that doesn't mean SFM just folds to DS. Just that they will interact with each other, and probably a lot. Spell pierce and dispel are cards after all.
More devolving into minor battles about card interaction (a fruitless exercise), but I'll still bite: My point about Revolt Zoo was that things need to go right for the Zoo deck in order to beat turn 3 Skull. Almost no deck in the format can beat a nut draw from Revolt Zoo that culminates in an Atarka's Command on turn 3. But the fundamental flaw of that deck is their inconsistency. The type of hands that beat Turn 3 Batterskull are the types of hands that beat almost any resistance. But the mediocre and medium hands are what count, and I can tell you that for the average game that doesn't involve nut draws, Turn 3 Batterskull is a big problem for many aggro decks. Drawing a single SFM isn't a "nut draw", it's pretty average. Drawing the exact 8 cards that beat it is a much harder feat. Which is fine. We would lose some aggro. I'm sure Burn would still be fine, as would some variation of CoCo. Revolt might suffer but it's only Tier 2/3 anyway.
Again, the whole point was simply to say, don't underestimate SFM. I'm not saying she would be an issue. In fact, I already stated that I think she would be fine right now. It's been a long time coming, but I do think the format in its current state could handle SFM reasonably well. U/W decks would likely stand to gain the most, and they could certainly use the boost. But I know for a fact that some of the same people complaining about Death's Shadow right now would be back here after Mystic's return, arguing about how oppressive she has become. It's the circle of life here. I was just trying to inject some logic, and remind people that balanced or not, Stoneforge is still a force to be reckoned with, and not some clunky package that doesn't jive with existing U/W deck, as was suggested by Bizzycola on the previous page.
No need to keep this particular argument going though. I basically agree with everyone if the line is "Stoneforge should be heavily considered to come off the ban list". We could talk about theoretical interactions for pages, but I'm not interested in doing that. It's all speculation anyway. The bottom line is that Stoneforge is more than playable in this format, which is why we're even discussing it being unbanned. I'm also strongly of the opinion that the format is relatively fine right now, and doesn't need a shakeup just yet. But I would put Stoneforge on my list of cards I'd like to see considered for freedom, alongside Jace, Twin, and BBE.
Apr 28, 2017Posted in: Modern ArchivesQuote from Wraithpk »
I have no doubt that this is what happened when it was in Standard, but Modern is a different format. Things that warp Standard don't always warp Modern. Emrakul tPE, Reflector Mage, and Smuggler's Copter see practically no play in Modern. Saheeli combo is very borderline on being Modern playable. And we have actual proof that SFM doesn't warp every format it's in, because it's just barely even playable in Legacy these days.
The best case scenario for SFM is a turn 3 Batterskull, assuming that a creature that dies to every removal spell in the format can survive a turn. Is a turn 3 4/4 lifelink vigilance really more powerful than some of the stuff the DS decks are doing? Is it more powerful than Dredge dumping 10 power on the board on turn 2? Is it more powerful than Revolt Zoo putting 10 hastey power on the board on turn 1? The fact is that SFM's best play is not the most powerful thing you can do in Modern. It's good, and would certainly see play, but I have a hard time believing SFM would be broken, especially as long as DS decks still exist.
Wait, so you're going to overlook nearly 7 years of Stoneblade being a Tier 1 deck in Legacy as evidence that it's not playable in that format? Yikes. Stoneforge is still played in Legacy, even if it's not at it's Tier 1 dominance. And now that Top is banned and Miracles stands to fall from grace, it's pretty likely that Stoneblade regains a good share of the metagame again.
I have no doubt that after a few years and perhaps a few other unbans (Bloodbraid and Twin as examples), the Stoneblade package would prove to be "fine" in modern. I was simply reminding Bizzycola, and the thread in general, not to overlook Stoneforge Mystic's power.
Your specific questions are subjective, but I will still respond to them:
Batterskull on turn 3 is definitely going to be a brick wall for many Death's Shadow decks, and the card advantage helps against their Plan B attrition strategy as well. More powerful? subjective. Good enough to be playable against them? Absolutely.
Similarly, having a Batterskull in play to gain life and eat Zombies from Dredge each turn is one of the best ways I can think of to stabilize, short of SB-level stuff like Anger of the Gods. It's not great, but it's better than just trying to race or block with a 4/5 that doesn't have lifelink or vigilance. Same goes for Revolt Zoo. I play that deck, and while it's possible to get through a brick wall lifelinker on turn 3, you need a serious nut draw to do it. Without a very aggressive start and a copy of Atarka's Command, I'd be in serious trouble against T3 'Skull.
And in all the grindy attrition matches, Stoneforge is going to shine. Against most combo, she's probably too clunky, but if it's your only threat and the rest of your deck can interact with said combo deck, she's still serviceable.
I'd be happy to see Stoneforge come off. I don't think she's too overpowered, and I agree that Modern is a different format than Legacy or Caw-Blade Standard was. But that doesn't mean she isn't powerful enough to warp the metagame around her, even if that effect is somewhat temporary. I'd rather see Stoneforge come off than something like Misstep. And while I think SFM would also boost decks like Abzan, it would probably help U/W/x more than anything else, which would be an improvement in color balance for sure. Just don't overlook the fact that she dominated Standard alongside her best friend Jace until they were both banned, and was the #1 deck in Legacy for years. If she gets released into Modern, you better be ready to beat her or join her.
Apr 27, 2017Posted in: Modern ArchivesQuote from bizzycola »
No I understand that cheating it into play is what makes SFM good, I was simply saying that I don't think UW control would want to clog up its list with a creature based strategy.
I also didn't say it shouldn't be unbanned because it would be better in Abzan than than UW or D&T I was simply stating this is a really unwarranted hope. I actually agree that a very Conservative attitude towards preservation of the power level of BGx decks does seem to be the reasoning behind peoples logic as to why other colors should get tools that are actually on par with it.
I get responses all the time about how "x would invalidate Jund" or "y would make discard unplayable" and I disagree those decks will always be viable decks but they are not afforded some protectionist element in the meta-game that says an other wise fair card must be banned because it makes TS/IoK slightly worse.
I just wanted to chime in on this, as I think there is a slight misunderstanding about Stoneforge Mystic's power level.
First, I would say that U/W decks would absolutely be happy to adopt Stoneforge Mystic into their list. It's not exactly "clogging up their list" to add 6-12 cards to the deck to support a SFM engine. It's more like "enhancing their list with a dozen more powerful cards than they previously had access to". Even with just 4 Snapcaster, 4 Stoneforge, and 2 Equipments, it's a very compact and tidy package that covers your finishers as well as your card advantage. But in truth, we know from experience that the Stoneforge engine is powerful enough to warp entire FORMATS around it, which means that one person tries it, someone else wins with it, and by week 3 everyone else is figuring out how to beat 'em or join 'em. By week 5, all the smart kids have joined.
Point is, U/W would happily play a SFM package, as would Abzan, as would Esper, Naya, and various other existing shells. Which of those would end up on top is certainly a mystery, but I'm sure Abzan and U/W would be top contenders given their current power level. Adding SFM wouldn't diversify anything, it would just become the new engine that the metagame revolves around. And I'm not even taking into account the fact that ThopterSword is legal now, and would love to play in the sandbox with our favorite Kor Artificer.
Comparing Steelshaper's Gift to SFM is unjust. Steelshaper's Gift is not a 2-for-1, and does not provide a body for your equipment that can also cheat said equipment into play. If it did, people would play it.
I also want to chime in on Mental Misstep. I was active in Legacy when the card was legal, and it was an unfun time. Everything was warped around it, and while that allowed a few cool decks to actually shine (like Natural Order RUG/Bant and 1-drop Zoo), overall the format was pretty bad. I could wax more about why this was the case, but the gist of it was that everyone was trying to play Misstep, but the only decks that truly benefited from it were control decks that were already trying to answer everything on the stack. I'd rather see them reprint Daze for Modern than to let Misstep back in.
Jun 28, 2016Posted in: Modern Archives - EstablishedQuote from SageOfTheSixPaths »I'm currently running 2 Ghost Quarter as my land hate. Can't be countered, very mana efficient (0 cost lol), and gets Tron before turn 3. On the play even, Crumble can't hit until they've likely assembled Tron and cast a fatty. For this reason I question it's viability vs Tron.
In testing, has it been fast enough to get the job done?
How do you fit 2 GQ into this deck? We are insanely color-mana hungry.
Crumble may not be castable until turn 4+, but we are well setup to keep the big scary spells off the table from Tron or the like until we can resolve the Crumble. GQ might set them back for a turn or 2, but it's also setting us back as well. Crumble just crushes them.
Kevin Jones's list looks pretty much perfect to me. I'm officially back on Grixis Delver.
May 20, 2016Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
Because I still have Junk online and all the pieces in paper (I play it occasionally), still like the deck and can potentially switch if metagame changes.
I can stop posting here if you have anything against it though.
No no, I'm not trying to be a bully. I just think if you are continuing to post here you should keep it positive in support of this version. Even If Jund is objectively better right now, Abzan has its obvious strengths, namely in the mirror. Let's just try and keep the focus on that, rather than which deck is better or why white sideboard cards aren't actually a significant gain over red (I still think they are).
Speaking of, celestial purge is looking decent right now as a 1-of board card.
May 20, 2016Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
So why are you posting here? Not trying to be prickish, just curious.
May 19, 2016For reference, my GP Boston 2014 list, which went 6-3:Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
May 19, 2016Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
I don't thnik Abzan is bad deck but after playing a lot with both decks I think Jund is better deck overall. They both have their advantages and disadvantages though. I agree with Abzan being better against most midrange decks and control due to Lingering Souls which is great card against grindy decks (possibly the best one). It also has some great sb cards (Stony Silence) but overall Jund has more good sb options and Path to Exile which is good late game removal but 99% of the time Terminate is just as good so this isn't real advantages except for few matches (Tron for Wurmcoils, Grishoalbrand-it's better to exile their creatures than killing them,...). I don't agree with mana base not being less painful for Jund (Blackcleace Cliffs is huge bonus) and this is even more obvious against faster decks. It may have better late game than Jund but early game is the problem (I struggled a lot against faster deck with Abzan and felt quite a bit of times that I need a miracle to survive early turns but if I did I was usually in a good spot). Synergy of Lily with Lingering souls is great but I don't think she's better in Abzan than Jund because of that. Of course all that comes to personal preference as well but I had much more success with Jund than with Abzan but like I said Abzan isn't bad deck and there are metagames where it's better than Jund but most of the time I think Jund is better and if I was about to play in unknown metagame I think Jund would be safer bet by having more options and I think it's more flexible deck.
I still somewhat disagree. Jund is the better deck right now, yes. But I still think comparing them and coming up with Jund being "better overall" is simply a matter of timing and subjective analysis. When Junk is better, it's better. That time is just not right now. If the format slows down about half a turn, Junk is the better deck, hands down. Just because it's a little slower doesn't mean it can't run as smooth as the Jund lists. It just needs tuning. The list I was running at GP Boston 2014 had 25 lands, 4 Dark Confidant, and a varied suite of removal spells with a lower overall curve. I'm going to look to that list for inspiration going forward. Point is, that deck was tuned better than anything I've ever played. It just required work and months of testing/grinding to get it to that perfect point.
That said, Jund is looking more and more tempting. I will be testing it as well as soon as I get my hands on a pair of Kalitas.
As for White having the "Best" sideboard cards, I wouldn't say that's a misnomer. Yes, Ancient Grudge is good and sometimes better than Stony Silence. Yes, green has good lifegain options now (finally). In the comparison between Jund/Junk, I don't think you're gaining that much in the board, and of course Lingering Souls is the big gain. But in certain scenarios, we still have an edge with SB options.
Thrun. I didn't mean to dis The Last Troll. He's still an absolute house in the mirror, especially against the Jund varieties. I just think he's a little less necessary in this deck at the moment. If we are losing to a big control deck, Thrun is not likely to get the job done as well as other options. Decks are going BIG right now, with lategames that involve Thopter/Sword, Ancestral Vision, Ulamog, and Worldbreakers. Thrun doesn't exactly go over the top of those decks. Once again, I think it's Sigarda or Sorin right now, not Thrun. We already have blockers for days.
In Jund, Thrun makes a lot more sense.
After writing all this, I'm really inspired to scratch the list I was working with (essentially Craig Krempels' build) and start all over with a renewed outlook on the deck. I'm going to focus on the following core and see what happens:
24-25 lands (possibly 2 Ghost Quarter. I'm coming around on it, especially with a full set of Paths)
1 Slaughter Pact
3 Abrupt Decay
3 Lingering Souls
May 18, 2016Comments on above topics:Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
Abzan Vs. Jund: I wouldn't call Jund the strictly "better" deck (Ayiluss), but it does have it's advantages as folks have mentioned above. Namely, it's faster and more interactive against any of the linear aggressive/combo decks. Our manabase isn't necessarily more painful, just slower, as are our spells. We can mitigate this a bit by having access to Disfigure and upping our Path count, but at the end of day, Bolt is just a hard spell to replace. However, we are certainly the better long game deck. We make better use of Lili thanks to Souls synergy, and we are better positioned to outgrind Jund and UWR decks, as well as many other midrange battles. So Jund might be better positioned at the moment, yes, but that doesn't mean it's a better deck. We crush Jund, so there's that. Besides, it's not the worst thing that we're under the radar right now.
On Ghost Quarter: It's a good card, and I can see finding space for 1 copy, but I wouldn't play more than that personally. The problem is, you are most of the time down a card for using GQ. Yes, it answers some problems, but it also comes with a hefty cost. It's one thing to Path something and ramp your opponent. It's even worse to sacrifice a land and put yourself behind on mana. Beyond that, we just don't have that much room for colorless lands, unless you want to up the count to 25 (not a terrible idea). Even then, I'd rather have something proactive like Gavony or Westvale Abbey or maybe Vault. I'll give GQ a try again, but haven't loved it in the past. More than 1 definitely seems risky though.
Blood Baron: He's definitely hard to kill, but there is one major problem in my mind: he simply dies to Tarmogoyf. You don't want your 5-mana Ace for the mirror to fold to the most prominent 2-mana threat across the table. He still does great things in most situations, but for 5 mana there are better ways to go over top of your Grixis and Jund oponents. See: Sigarda Host of Herons.
Thrun is in a similarly awkward place. Great against UWR, decent against Grixis. But he's still just a big dumb 4-drop that doesn't swing through Tasigur or Goyf at the end of the day. I'd recommend other curve-toppers.
May 16, 2016Posted in: Modern Archives - ProvenQuote from ed06288 »Anyone have a link to a good write-up on uses/rulings/tips of fulminator mage?
There isn't that much to it. You keep him around until the best opportunity presents itself. Attack or block with him as many times as possible against Scape, UWR, or the mirror. Against Tron you might "pop" him earlier. But he blocks wurm reasonably well if you sac during combat.
Do you have any specific rulings or questions about him?
May 16, 2016Posted in: Modern Archives - ProvenQuote from micah1 »Haha yes. Found the replacement for my bitterblossom. After a little more testing, unless it makes me like it more, I'm gonna add 2 Murderous Cut. I think that may make me want to remove Tasigur though. I'm going to keep poking around.
EDIT: Doing more thinking, I do want to try to get 2-3 Courser of Kruphix in the deck. I'm not a big fan of Path to Exile, and could see dropping to 2. It's good, but I don't like it vs a lot of decks. Tasigur would also conflict with the new Murderous Cut, so I could drop that with the third PtE and have 2 coursers added in. I'm also just not the biggest fan of Tasigur in the first place. Once again, after playing more games with my current list, I'll try double courser with Blossom.
I also wanted a 7th discard spell. Probably/possibly over the command, though I really do like my removal...
A fourth Abrupt Decay is another option on the Cheap Removal side of things.
My current, completely unrevised list: http://deckbox.org/sets/1409910
The deck farthest away from it: http://deckbox.org/sets/1412450 Changes are: -2 Blossom -1 PtE -1 Dromoka's Command -1 Lingering Souls -1 Tasigur. +1 Abrupt Decay +1 Inquisition of Kozilek +2 Murderous Cut +2 Courser of Kruphix. I also was briefly considering dropping a Scooze for another Courser. I also made some sideboard rearrangements.
Now that I've mapped out where my testing will be heading with this deck, I'm going to play around with the numbers between those two decks a whooooooole ton. I'll be posting games/records/notes for you guys.
Wanted to address this post before it gets lost in the shuffle.
I figured it was only a matter of time before we starting looking at Murderous Cut as another removal option. It's a great spell, and can help balance the removal suite nicely. But I wouldn't slice Tasigur out of the deck just to marginally improve your removal. Tasigur is a much more unique and powerful card compared with Cut. He represents Goyfs 5+6, and can often come down for even cheaper, while also being a guaranteed 4/5. Both as a blocker and attacker, this can be invaluable. But it's really his lategame prowess that makes it hard to justify cutting him. As a potentially very cheap threat that can buy you extra cards, he really is unique, and he's won me countless games in heads-up hellbent situations. I'd much rather have Tasigur in my deck than Murderous Cut, given the plethora of other removal options we have. Tasigur is irreplaceable.
You still probably only want 2-3 Delve spells max here, and I could see running a 1/1 split on Tas/Cut if you're really in the market for more flexible removal. But I wouldn't cut Tas completely, and I honestly don't think we need Cut bad enough right now anyway. Keep in mind it's conditional, and often will be just as costly to cast as Pulse or Abzan Charm. This is less of an issue on your threats, as you can resolve them in whatever order works best, but removal often needs to work asap. I've had issues with Cut in the past showing up too late to the party to matter.
On a similar note, I think Courser is also a great card, but I don't think you want more than 2. The first copy is generally plenty, and a 2/4 for 3 is often underwhelming, despite the upsides. HE's good in grinds, but very slow against any combo or fast aggro deck. Does work against Burn and Zoo, but they can still run him over more often than not. Great in the mirror. In any case, don't overload on them is all.
That said, test it all for yourself. I'm just speaking from my own experience.
Not sure why we were still discussing Rest in Peace, as it's the last option we'd ever consider for graveyard hate. If Legacy Dredge was a deck, we'd still have better options. Anyway, Spellbomb, Surgical, and Scooze are the obvious GY hate options, with Kalitas and Anafenza being good options against certain decks as well. Not sure we need to explore options beyond that at the moment. For me, Scooze is still doing more than enough work, and I'm not above running a playset in the 75. I've done it before and didn't regret it.
Dark Confidant is totally playable here, we just have better options if we want them. He synchs just a little bit better with Jund, despite what the numbers tell you. They have incentive to run more creatures thanks to Kommand, and they do have a lower enough curve to matter. They also have Blackcleave Cliffs to help smooth the mana pain. Lots of little things add up to an overall better fit. He's still fine here, but most folks choose to use the other options that fit. The big upside to not playing him is that our deck becomes almost wholly Bolt-proof, which makes us the better Izzet-chomper. Snapcaster is less scary when he doesn't trade for anything in your deck. Also, when you aren't afraid of getting Bolted out. Bob opens us up to those types of vulnerabilities. If that's okay with you, than play Bob. For the rest of us, we're happy with Truths and Charms for now.
May 13, 2016Leyline doesn't excite me. Very narrow and falls to cryptic as you mentioned. You also want like 3 minimum to max out turn 1 availability but 3 slots is a lot for such a narrow card.Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
There are plenty of GY options beyond Leyline and wheel. Spellbomb, surgical, Kalitas etc. But against specifically thopters and coco, Scooze is the best option and that's why we prefer to run 3 maindeck.
May 13, 2016I agree the primer could be better, but definitely tone down the criticism just a bit. Have you ever written a primer? It's harder than you think. Also just because he has a diverse primer, doesn't mean he's going to remember every relevant card. The reason cards like Painful Truths and Hissing Quagmire are missing though is that the OP hasn't been updated since March.Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
That said, I do agree that the primer should focus on the Tier 1-2 BGx core variations, and leave the Smallpox and Treefolk version to the other threads. Micah, if you want to rewrite the primer, feel free to offer. Maybe Mastodon is ready to hand it over.
Anyway, I'm not sold on Bitterblossom, especially as a 2-of. I don't like Kitchen Finks main either, unless Burn is half your meta. Blossom doesn't immediately impact the board, and is really slow unless you get it on turn 2. Having a couple Townships to synergize with it isn't really enough support in my opinion, as the card really wants you to be pumping tokens or countering spells with Faeries to truly get full value. Souls is good because it works with Lili, punches through counters, and helps smooth our mana curve while providing immediate pressure or relief. Blossom is much less reliable for all of the above.
Dromoka's Command is definitely a card, though I don't think I'd maindeck it right now. Again, in a Burn infested meta, maybe. Outside of that, I think it's a little clunky and is better off in the board.
Painful Truths is a known quantity. So is Quagmire. I do agree they should be added to the primer, along with all the other recent innovations (Oath of Nissa comes to mind). But let's try and get that to happen in a more constructive and less critical way. 2AM posts need not be borderline flaming.
May 12, 2016Yeah I have Slaughter Pact main, just to get people. Disfigure in the board. But it's hard to justify paying 4 life these days for Dismember, especially before maxing out on Decays and Paths. I'm staying away from that one for now.Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
Sleeved up the board for this weekend/next week, whenever I get to play next. Decided to make some changes from my theorycrafting ideas. Here's what I tuned up:
DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards Sideboard
2 Kitchen Finks
1 Feed the Clan
3 Stony Silence
1 Creeping Corrosion
1 Engineered Explosives
1 Zealous Persecution
2 Fulminator Mage
1 Surgical Extraction
3 Cards for burn because that deck is an issue. EE and Disfigure also fill in there. 4 actual hate cards, plus another ~4 splash cards for Affinity because screw losing to Affinity. 3 Sweepers of various flavors. 1 Extra removal for fast decks. 1 Extra seize for actual combo. 1 Miser Surgical for said combo, as well as any actual "GY" decks. I'm not playing more GY hate until it's proven necessary, but Surgical seems the most impactful as a solo card. Fulminator because lands still kill us (Colonnade, Urza, Scapeshift). And that's basically a wrap. Once I find out what meta I'm expecting, I'll tune as necessary. It's definitely lacking some grindfest cards, and is geared toward faster metas, but I think it's a well rounded board. I stole most of it from Krempels anyway.
- To post a comment, please login or register a new account.