2019 Holiday Exchange!
 
A New and Exciting Beginning
 
The End of an Era
  • 1

    posted a message on [Primer] Stasis 2016- updated 2019
    UUUUUStasis!UUUUU
    UStrictly non-budget, competitive as possible- no chronotogs!U





    U Introduction:U


    Stasis. The very name is dripping with MTG history. From way back in the earliest days of Alpha, this card was there, waiting to be abused, waiting to annoy, waiting to be broken. From the antidote to the black summer of Necropotence, where it was the good-guy deck, to the odd fringe extended prison deck, Stasis was always there, rarely dominating but always with us. The card that could probably lay a good claim to the title of "most despised" in the whole of MTG history would periodically pop up for about the first ten years of Magic, piloted by an Adrian Sullivan type player, win events in Standard or Extended, and then recede. Then something changed. Prison decks became almost official persona non grata, Wizards stopped printing free spells and the best free draw spell of all Gush was no longer allowed in proper Magic. People did not forget about Stasis, some pretty famous commentators and players love the card, Gerry Thompson for example was a big fan and was throwing up testing ideas just a few years ago, but to all intents and purposes the Stasis deck has been dead for a while, consigned to the "casual" and Commander tables.
    Typically Stasis often attracts the kind of "new to the game" casual player who wishes to annoy others, Stasis being a port of call high up on the list after land destruction and other prison strategies. The problem with this is that just reinforced the idea that Stasis is a casual deck, badly played and built for fun with inelegant and unlikely combinations of cards. But what if there is actually a moderately competitive Legacy build featuring Stasis? What if the tools are there right now and we have not noticed........?

    This thread is for Stasis decks that are as competitive as possible. Do we mean one copy of this is going to turn up at the next GP and be ridden by a pro to victory and fame? Well, not really. But do we mean a deck you can take to your local high entry "win a dual", or even to 4-0 at FNM then yes. Do we mean a deck that can be favoured against at least some of the top archetypes? Yes, that is possible.

    One thing to note about Stasis discussion is the term "hardlock" and "softlock". A hardlock deck aims to lay Stasis and pay for it forever, any new resources (lands) come into play and cannot be built up for a get-out-of-jail spell, because we will have something to either make their lands ETB tapped or to tap them, limiting them to one mana in an "almost" hard lock. A softlock deck aims to play Stasis as part of an overall resource strategy, it may be paid for indefinitely but the enemy will have the opportunity to play lands and build them up to put pressure on or find a solution. This may sound like the worse of the two options, but the problem is in Legacy there are plenty of decks that do not need much in the way of mana, and in order to execute a true hardlock we need to play pretty poor cards like Frozen Aether , which is not really where we want to be.
    This almost allows a total lock out, and costing just one mana is technically viable in comparison to chaff like Frozen Aether. It has the upside of punishing Fetch heavy decks, making Wasteland escapes by killing lonely Forsaken Cities impossible unless they are already down. It can also make Howling Mine better - it switches off when tapped, and even stops Lotus Petals being popped the turn they are cast. Spirit Guides do work with it, but before you dig out the Spirit Guides, this card is hard to include, even if you are prepared to forsake Back to Basics in the URW shell to make it multi coloured. Its disadvantage with Forsaken Cities is sadly obvious- they come in tapped post Maze, requiring a card to untap, putting strain on the Turbo shell.

    This planeswalker can tap permanents and untap them too, meaning a softlock can degenerate into a near hard lock, save for Spirit Guides, Petals and a solitary land. That might be enough for some decks, of course, but that is why we play other things.
    This one untaps two lands and draws cards whilst can be removal as well........

    UUU The problems with Stasis UUU

    Stasis decks are effectively symmetrical mana restriction decks but where the card also acts as an anti-creature tool, fulfilling two functions. This presents us with the problem that some decks need just a single land or less to work, such as Storm or Sneak and Show with its Lotus Petals. Furthermore, if we try and break the symmetry of Stasis with usable cards that are good in their own right then you can bet your bottom dollar that other decks might use the same shell. Elves, for example, can use creatures that bounce a lands to untap creatures.

    A second issue is that in fulfilling two roles Stasis might need to be cast to stop creatures before we are ready to keep it up indefinitely.
    When we have Stasis down the odds are that once we no longer can pay for it the opponent will get first use of their mana, so we will need to be able to design the deck in such a way that it can remove threats and defend itself whilst under a temporary Stasis, or keep the Stasis around forever without ruining its resources.

    A third major issue is the existence of uncounterable cards- Cavern of Souls makes uncounterable creatures, which we can at least deal with, but Abrupt Decay nerfs our key card and short of Misdirection effects we can't do a damn thing about it. Planeswalkers can also operate under Stasis, something both sides of the table can use.....

    Finally we are aiming at being competitive events of a certain moderate size, and thus when playing paper MTG, will rapidly let most people know what you are doing. If you are doing well with a Stasis deck the odds are you will have a game go long. Even if you do not people will talk- Stasis is not the kind of card that goes unnoticed. Your hopes for surprise value will rapidly diminish, so no more winning because the opponent took a good hand and tapped out turn 2 or 3 to play a dude, Cranial Plating, Green Sun's Zenith or whatever and never got an untap.


    UUU Why play Stasis?:UUU

    Beyond the desire to go old school and subjective definitions of what makes good Mtg, Stasis does offer a couple of promising properties.
    Firstly it acts against both creatures and mana in a single card, making it potentially rather potent against fair decks if you can break the symmetry. Very few other cards offer both the ability to restrict already existing permanents and also stop yet-to-be-cast spells from coming down.

    Secondly, it comes in the colour of the best free counterspells and card selection in the game, making it viable against certain unfair decks too. Free counterspells are great in any deck, we all know they are the glue that holds Legacy in place, but when your whole deck is designed to play under Stasis the odds are you will get more value out of them than your opponents who might be able to also cast a Force or Daze but will not be able to sculpt their hand better than you and who will need to cast stuff to win themselves, which under Stasis means a very few potential cards that can be cast over the course of a game. Sure, you have a problem if a burn player, say, has resolved a Sulfric Vortex or a player has a planeswalker type card before you lay Stasis, but playing a Stasis type deck will require you to know what the likely threats are in their deck and counter appropriately. Generally though you would hope to have the option of casting Stasis for reasonable advantage as soon as you draw it, even if you choose not to.

    Other good cards cards in their own right can combine with Stasis rather well- Tabernacles and attack taxes, for example, or untapping Planeswalkers like Garruk mark one or Ral above, whilst Legacy is full of quality control spells that make casting things asymmetrically harder.

    As Foretold also offers the chance to do stuff whilst under Stasis, asymmetrically. It also combines well with Ancestral Vision and instant card draw.


    URW Introducing some shells:UGW



    This primer will concern itself with two basic approaches- bant creature based, and control/prison based, including mono U, UR and URW variants of the deck.

    Bant Stasis- a creature approach

    The first shell uses creature similar to some that Elves use that allow lands to be bounced to keep paying for Stasis, and is typically Bant based, with a tutor package to enable a Stasis to come down early. This may or may not run Force of Wills, indeed the most famous version of this, Fatpow's Horn of Greed Stasis list featured on SCG's daily digest had none, but it certainly can. An Enlightened Tutor package and Green Sun's package is equally likely, and a draw engine will also most likely be required, whether it be by cards like Ancestral Vision , or by Horn of Greed and Exploration .




    This may use the odd copy of Forsaken City , a nominally bad land used as back up to the creature based land bouncing plans, which effectively trades cards in hand for an untap at the beginning of the upkeep.

    U/Ur/Uw/Uwr creatureless Stasis
    The second type of shell is slightly reminiscent of the old mono-blue turbo shells, but without the Frozen Aether, Veldaken or Tradewind bounce engines that don't do anything on their own. Also absent is the hardlock card Chronotog, who again does nothing on his own. What we really want to aim for in competitive builds is a Blue based control deck that uses Stasis as a flexible card to lock the prison. It needs to be able to win without Stasis, or at least may only need a few turns of Stasis action.

    This deck normally relies on one of two kill cards- Black Vise is rather obviously better than anything else of its ilk for its 1cc, but it it is just a win con. Secondly Fevered Visions acts as a damaged-based win condition that draws both players cards, but draws them first for you. With a turbo draw element paying for Stasis via Forsaken City can be indefinite, despite the presence of Wastelands in the format it is quite easy to keep a Stasis going. Bolt and Ral Zarek are further damage sources.

    This deck is similar to Jace, Tamyo and Zarek based planeswalker builds in UR, where prior to As Foretold being printed Planeswalkers needed to be resolved before the Stasis. A Jeff Hoogland list of this sort is in the decklists section, where the whole Fevered Visions package is replaced by the more prosaic but highly effective Bolt-Snap-Bolt and Jace deal.


    This type of deck can be tuned in terms of main deck for a meta. The sideboard should then be aimed very much at Storm and Burn, which are likely to be very difficult matches game 1. I should mention the Brainstorm elephant in the room- Turbo Stasis decks,and particuarly mono U ones, use Brainstorm less effectively than their opponent's blue decks, because over fetching can lead to the Turbo deck being self milled before the opponent. If the number of fetches is low, Brainstorm becomes worse. Root Maze builds must eschew Brainstorm entirely, as fetches are very bad in such builds. Brainstorm is of course the best card in Legacy, and you can still play it in UR and URx builds that are not based around the "turbo" howling mine package. In these situations, UR Stasis acts as a UR control deck spouting all the usual suspects, using Brainstorm, and Stasis is just part of the control comboing with an untap walker. Jeff Hoogland has streamed one of these UR Stasis control builds as well as traditional fetchless mono U.


    Mono Blue
    After the initial version of the primer there was some discussion of mono blue creatureless, and a pointer to a GP list that went 4-4. Hoogland has streamed mono U Stasis, the list in the spoiler below. The most old school of Stasis decks, it wins via Vise or decking.
    Clearly, once you drop fetches in mono U you have to turn Brainstorms into either Ancestral Vision or Ponder, but the free stuff list of options is basically the usual suspects- Forces, Dazes are almost a must in this type of shell, Ensnare , Misdirection , and even Snap present creditable options, although I still prefer the more traditional Chain of Vapor over Snap. The Wipe Away in the sample list raised eyebrows here but it is actually rather good, especially against decks making 20/20s they wish to hexproof.

    What you lose by having the shell as mono U is the Fetch-Brainstorm smoothness, any Fevered Visions (which is replaced by the Vise), any Enlightened toolbox from white or burn from red. You still get free counters, Tabernacles, Propaganda, draw and, of course the Stasis. What you gain is a faster game- Vise being a turn one drop, and less chance of a Blood Moon or Wasteland wrecking your day.




    Bant Stasis offers two basic options, with a number of choices arising once you have decided on the basic option. Firstly, the engine is relatively simple- mana dorks, untap and land bounce ability creatures. This will be core to all versions. Enlightened Tutor and Green Sun's Zenith offer the ability to grab the right dudes to get a bouncing land and untap. You can assume that you are generally looking to lay Stasis as quickly as possible in this archetype. From from there we get two basic options, featuring either heavy blue control and some "regular" draw or featuring more combo orientated draw engines and less blue control.

    Derevi, acts as a win con and might the best type of hardlock that Stasis can employ with genuinely useful cards.
    Force of Will is potentially well-supported in terms of blue cards and can, along with Daze, offer a measure of protection against fast linear combo decks. Daze is especially important as in classic mono blue hardlock lists running 4 cc stuff it is very difficult to use Daze at all as you need to get your expensive hardlock pieces down before Stasis, and Daze sets you so far back. This is one of the reason hardlock mono-U is a basically casual deck in contrast to soft-lock varieties featured here which work better with Daze.

    Asusa, Exploration and Horn of Greed forms a card advantage engine reminiscent of Enchantress in terms of they way it ramps for value.

    Bant Stasis can also run Planeswalkers like Garruk for some land untapping, circumventing Stasis and potentially ticking upwards. A variant of this is RUG Stasis, less Enlightened tutoring but the addition of red giving options such as Pyroblast, Ral Zarek or even Fevered Visions. Personally I would question Ral Zarek's usefulness, as Garruk is a more powerful Planeswalker in a vacuum, but Pyroblast could be a very valuable addition.




    Mana dorks are essential.
    Noble Hierarch is obvious, although a greedier mana base could mean trusty BOPs get in on the action.
    Other potential mana producing dork cards include
    Wall of Roots is a reasonable blocking body which sadly produces just green mana but does not tap at 2cc
    and
    Sylvan Carytid - adding hexproof but at a steeper two cc.

    Untap and bounce dudes are basically few in number so
    Quirion Ranger
    Scryb Ranger
    are the only two reasonable choices here, we must use some number of these core creatures.

    If Green Sun's Zenith is included then we get Dryad Arbor for acceleration main and options for the sideboard like Gaddock Teeg great for most versions of Storm (and, incidentally this hurts traditional Prison decks such as Stax or other combo decks involving 4cc non creature spells such as Spirals).

    Azusa, Lost but Seeking
    Horn of Greed
    Exploration
    These form part of the Fatpow Stasis draw engine, I won't explain it here as it is pretty obvious.


    Garruk Wildspeaker offers potential wincons and circumvents the Stasis
    Ral Zarek
    Equipoise is an anti-D n T card. Simply put with Stasis down the phased out permanents do not come back as they should come back in the Untap Step.
    Enlightened Tutor . Finds Stasis, at the cost of card disadvantage. In its way it is excellent against discard, as it puts what we want on top of the library, and increases the chances of us drawing what we want.
    Sterling Grove Main or sideboard card, it acts as an expensive Tutor whilst eating your opponent's first Abrupt Decay.

    As Foretold - another option, better in decks with Ancestral Visions and Instants due to the "once each turn" wording.
    Hidden Strings
    I am not a fan, as on its own it does nothing but I have seen it used in old lists.

    Black Vise Cheap win con that synergises with Stasis and can reduce the life of decks like Miracles quite quickly if you get a hardlock. Damage can be redirected to Planeswalkers.

    Brainstorm goes without saying, and Ponder plus Ancestral Vision are obviously worth consideration.
    Gitaxian Probes can always be run, and Force of Will offers protection against Belcher et al.
    Daze is of course playable, and synergises very well, although it needs to be used carefully pre-Stasis.

    Stifle is always good int his format- plenty to hit and often gets us ahead if drawn early against slower decks.
    Thwart Three islands back to hand is steep in any other deck, and is still steep here, but it can be used.
    Foil This is probably unplayable in most versions.

    Chain of Vapor - Although slightly better in decks with few non-land permanents, this card's main use is to bounce our Stasis. Note you can bounce our Stasis and then sac a land to bounce something else- if it is theirs then they can do the same. It can bounce an early delver on its own acting as a simple unsummon if you have no permanents down.

    Meditate . I feel this is just a bad card in most versions. If it drew two from the top four and cost two I would play it, but 3 cc is so much under a Stasis, and its uncastable before Stasis vs a fair few decks.
    Ancestral vision . I like it in the Bant shell but only if the deck is not running the Horn of Greed combo.

    Stoic Angel . Stasis number five to an extent, and a dude that works under Stasis itself.

    Other Stasis-esque effects....
    Back to Basics Impressive and powerful potentially asymmetric Stasis for lands with no upkeep costs, unlikely to make many main decks but a possibility.
    Static Orb - another Stasis variant upon the classic
    Winter Orb


    Sideboard options- as ever it is a case of chose what you want to beat, and we have plenty of colours to chose from.
    Teeg we have already mentioned, and of course
    Rest In Peace ,
    Containment Priest and
    Grafdigger's Cage
    All offer various anti bin strategies to hurt everything from Manaless Dredge to Storm. Priest being also anti-"Show and Tell"- cheated Grisselbrands too, Cage stopping Natural Order and our own Green Sun's Zenith too. RIP could combo with Energy Field, although that is more likely a main deck strategy in Pillow-Fort.

    Arcane Laboratory
    Eidolon of Rhetoric
    Aethersworn Canonist and
    Rule of Law

    All offer some anti Storm and Enchantress style action turn 2 potentially, and Leyline of Sanctity offers some more potential Storm/burn/discard tech.

    Energy Flux nails Affinity or Steel stompy, equipment and vial decks like D n T runs a large amount of artifacts, especially when you remember Phyrexian Revoker is an artifact, and MUD.
    Null Rod hits affinity, old style Stax decks, and MUD too. Stony Silence does this in White
    Krosan Grip split second disenchant.

    Chill is good at protecting Stasis, making Pyroblast cost 3, hosing burn and making Fireblast cost actual mana.
    Monastery Siege makes Abrupt Decay cost a whopping four mana or acts as card selection, potentially.
    Sterling Grove offers tutoring and prevents other Enchantments being targeted (although sadly Council's Judgement still works against them).

    Submerge Free removal/tempo for faster decks like Infect.

    Zuran Orb life for lands, anti aggro tech that costs zero. Obviously easy to cast under Stasis.
    Claws of Gix . Similar, worse, but can sacrifice Stasis end of turn to give you first use.
    Ensnaring Bridge Anti-huge monster option that stops Craterhoof Behemoths, Emrakul, Progenitus, Grisselbrand type options only. Obviously not stellar with a full hand, very build dependent card.

    Propaganda
    Ghostly Prison
    Anti swarm stuff, slows Delver, makes them tap out, slows Eldrazi drastically, likely a board card rather than main feature in the Bant lists, it conceivably end up main deck as a singleton.

    Flusterstorm are always worth considering for Storm and counter wars.

    Gaddock Teeg - useful hatebear that stops a lot, including Green Sun's Zenith, Natural Order, Tendrils of Agony, Terminus, Cataclysm, Jace, Force of Will etc.

    Leyline of Sanctity. Pretty self-explanatory.

    Meddling Mage . Stops whatever it needs to stop.



    One of the more famous Fatpow lists is here. There are quite a few different takes on this, including Fatpow's RUG version, but this is the most well-known due to Gerry Thompson's Digest column.



    Here is a different take from long-time contributor SpoCk0nd0pe. This is at the other end of the spectrum, with a plethora of counterspells.



    I have only included two lists here to show two different approaches, there are a few out there but the main aim is to get people brewing for their local meta today.



    This is probably the hardest part for me to write due to the variety of options available in Bant- I have not tried them all, and playskill, always huge in any deck, is even more of an issue in a Stasis deck where the value of cards changes before and after Stasis is played. I am primarily a player of the creatureless U-X shells, and have a lot of experience with the Planeswalker builds featuring Zarek and/or Jace. The variety in the various Bant lists out there makes giving specific matches in detail hard, so we shall have to content ourselves with broad advice and an acknowledgement of key cards. Fair decks are going to be the easiest decks for us, but it will vary from deck to deck and depend a lot on your build. Combos will generally be harder, although the board tools exist to help deal with them. Builds are key, as you can imagine taking on a combo deck is easier when Force of Will etc. are in your list, although Fatpow's list itself is, of course, a deck drawing combo in itself.

    Fair and Aggro Decks
    Generally a Stasis deck should be looking to beat a fair deck that uses men to attack like D n T, say, no matter what its disruption is. The faster the fair deck gets the harder it becomes, the more they try and be mid range and grindy the easier, with the caveat that Abrupt Decay is a real pain. If you are having difficulty with lots of fair decks then you need to readjust your build, because they need to be your bread and butter. Faster red based aggro decks like faster Delver variants and Burn might sound problematical, but with cards like Chill about it is not an insurmountable problem if you are prepared to lose valuable slots on what are relatively narrow board cards. Often game two may be more difficult than game one against fair decks, in contrast to unfair ones where game two should see us stronger than our game ones.


    Death and Taxes.
    We would certainly hope to be favoured here over the match. Their key guys will be Thalia, the not often played Spirit of The Labyrinth, Ethersworn Canonist, Revoker, Sanctum Prelate and Aven Mindcensor- each hits a small part of our deck. Annoying non tapping Serra Avengers can be a pain if they are run, but this match very much is about their hate bears. If these can be kept off for a small while there is every chance of a winning board state being found. This is where your control suite comes in, and why your build must be able to remove permanents or at least counter them- a specific control option of note is Equipoise. With no men down this can, during your upkeep, phase out their hatebears, allowing you to go about your business unfettered. Stasis ensures they never fade back in, thanks to no untap, but just removing hate bears for your turn is often enough, especially if you run Back To Basics in the 75 as it is one of the rudest cards against D n T. With a couple of men down you can reduce their lock and specifically get rid of their artifacts providing you have none of your own out. Note that if phasing ever does happen to a vial and it comes back it will not reset. Their mass removal is often Cataclysm from the board, so be aware of it.

    The chalice-stompy decks
    Eldrazi, All in Red Dragon Stompy, Merfolk, Soldier Stompy, Trinichoke-Viridistax etc.
    Chalice Stompy strategies have always been around, and it is important to not keel over to t1 chalice. I guess Green Sun's Zenith is important here as it gets cc1 stuff into play without running into Chalice.
    Eldrazi is lightning quick, and puts pressure on fast. If you run Back to Basics you can do a fair chunk of restriction with it, although this is way better in a Propaganda shell. I personally would not want to race Eldrazi on the draw with a lot of Bant shells, I would rather have tutorable answer cards somewhere like Meekstone and in particular Ensnaring Bridge (the latter of which may not be viable in draw heavy builds) but it will all depend on your build. As an increasingly common deck you need to build with it in mind. A lot of decks have difficulty with Eldrazi on the draw, especially if it gets a disrupting piece down T1.

    All in Red/Dragon Stompy
    This is vulnerable to Chill post board, under Stasis or Back to Basics the Chill effect is very powerful in a Propaganda shell, on its own it is less so. Their Moon will stop any Forsaken untap shenanigans, and they have Pyroblast game two. Being bant makes removing Chalices and enchantments is at least quite easy.

    Merfolk
    Another Chalice deck with Force of Will and Islandwalk sounds difficult but counters aside it has few ways to interact with Stasis or, indeed, creatures, save the odd Jitte and Dismember and its clock is quick-ish but not frightening. Cards like Curse Catcher don't hit Stasis or other hate permanents itself and Vial is not the fastest at churning out their men, none of which can remove Stasis even temporarily in the way D n T's guys can. Many of these fishy decks are low on Wastelands too. This match will depend on how you build your Stasis shell- with counters and control or with combo/draw will give vastly different outcomes. If you have Propaganda sideboard effects you should find a resolved Stasis and one of them is often going to be game.

    Other Chalice decks may pop up, Soldier Stompy but the principle is the same- they kill with dudes and Stasis slows their development, often leaving them with no way to remove it.

    BUG- shardless or otherwise.
    This is the hardest of the fair matches- they have many angles of attack and run Abrupt Decay, hand destruction and counters. Monastery Siege makes Abrupt Decay cost four, Sterling Grove says "no, me first" full stop, Back to Basics can be lethal from the board, and Misdirection, Stifle or Divert effects can get a bit of a blow out. But you can forget game one a lot of the time unless you get a lucky draw or they get a bad one. The Fatpow engine here might be able to run away with it if it hits Exploration early doors as BUG is pretty slow.


    Delver decks- RUG
    The second fastest of the Delver decks, they have few lands, almost no basics (making Back to Basics great if you run it) and if they take a threat-light hand can be caught napping- drawing out with Ponders and Brainstorms is not an option with Stasis down. They have thy ability to drop a threat and ride it to victory,though, and can Pyroblast game 2/3. A resolved Stasis might be enough game 1, but resolving it is hard and game 2 and 3 is not going to be pleasant if they overload on Pyroblast effects.

    Delver- Grixis
    Its slower than RUG, and although they splash into Abrupt Decay I would be happier against this in the Horn of Greed version at least than against RUG. Back to Basics from the board is great.

    Delver R/U
    Chill is perhaps your best game two friend, its really nasty for them, prowess is hard to use effectively under a Chill. You need to watch out for Eidolon or Sulfuric vortex as well as counters. If either of those two permanents hit you can't lay Stasis and hope to win without dealing with them, but in bant you get all the tools to do so.

    Death's Shadow- same deal really, but with no Chill to slow them.

    Burn
    This is really the same as RU delver speed wise. They get more free Fireblasts than we get Forces/Dazes and have less reliance on dudes, game one is always going to be tough unless you include some life gain and counters/disenchant effects to deal with Sulfric Vortex. Game two - Chill again makes Stasis better, and they ony have so many Pyroblast effects. Leyline is normally strong but no auto win even if it is t0.

    Maverick
    Very much death and taxes territory, but they get Pridemages and Knight of Autumn, which need to be watched out for, and in black splash versions Abrupt Decay game two. Again you would hope for a win against this type of deck, but will need a board plan with cards like Back to Basics acting as extra Stasis as they will likely have enough removal to deal with a mere four Stasis

    Prison Decks
    Pox and Loam Pox
    Mono B Pox decks generally can't do much about a resolved Stasis, unless they run and preemptively play and untap a Nev's disk (which is exceptionally unusual), but their black green cousins can worry less thanks to Decay and Pernicious Deed. The danger here for Bant versions is getting undone by Smallpox getting some maximum value early on. Follow it up with Lilly coming down and laying Stasis profitably is looking hard. If you can slip a Stasis down and pay indefinitely then all their Mishra's look rubbish against it, and Cursed Scroll et al. is equally ineffective.

    Miracles- watch out for Terminus, basically.


    Stax- Wx and MUD variants. A t1 3 sphere or Chalice is always going to be really hard, and Humility in W Stax is rude if it resolves too. Get ahead and get a mana dork down is key.

    Combo

    Lands and Golgari Depths variants
    They will all run acceleratents, they are always quicker than they look, and 20/20s don't have to swing too often. Post board expect 4 grip every time in Lands and more Trophy plus Decay in Depths. One hit with a 20/20 is enough. Assassin's trophy is at least counterable.

    Painter
    Pyroblasts maindeck make for a sad Stasis player, and t2 Blood Moon can be really nasty. Not a match to look forward to, you need specific answers to their combo but also will likely find them disappearing to blast effects with Painter down. Fortunately the deck declined substantially post Top

    Infect.
    This depends entirely on if you are running Force of Will and creature removal, and how much. The key here as with most control decks is not losing early. Having some flying in the list gives us an edge most decks do not have against the deck, they only have 4 unblockable Agents after all. Misdirection will be stronger in this version than critterless lists below.

    Spiral Tide mono-u
    Again this combo type is not one to look forward to, and if it is about you need specific board slots you would otherwise not run. Mercifully rare, and only really going to be fought with narrow board cards like Canonists, Rule of Law etc.

    Reanimator
    A lot of anti-bin cards exist, and of course Containment Priest is rather hard for them from the board. This should not be an unwinnable match if it is in your meta.

    Storm- I won't differentiate between the various versions, again I lack a lot of practice here with Bant versions although I have played Storm with the second type of Urw Stasis deck. If Storm is about you need to consider board Null Rods, Rule of Laws or Arcane Lab effects, and Leylines of Sanctity plus anti-bin effects, although they can win without the bin. Note they may switch to a different plan game two and not target you, so avoid putting all the eggs in one defensive basket. Game one is going to be tough- untap steps are not exactly needed in Storm decks.

    Belcher
    The most disruptable combo deck, Leylines and Rule of Law etc. will all die to resolved Reverent Silences, but Null Rods, and Pithing Needle effects are strong. Game one will often be a question of being a Force of Will version or moving to game two swiftly either way- a perfect start for Stasis and a slow start for them might see you draw half your deck via Horn of Greed, but killing them before they can finish you will be hard.

    Elves
    Restrict them to one spell a turn is a valid strategy in game two, you can't switch their dudes off with Cursed Totem effects without hurting your own. Stopping Natural Order should not be too hard. Game one allows them to have the same bounce a land tricks as you.

    Enchantress
    Another type of combo deck, I play a little Enchantress myself- Stasis does not worry me too much unless it has a hardlock, Engineered explosives does, Rule of Law/Cannonist Effects effects do. You can get out of the mana restriction with Sanctum, but the new Thalia can stop that. If this deck is around then a couple of copies of Thalia, Heretic can turn stasis into a near hardlock deck against most Enchantress lists.



    These decks rely on lots of Pillow-Fort style defensive permanents and/or Spells- similar in some ways to Miracles, but not as good. Stasis is a component in the deck but not the sole focus-it locks them. Fevered Visions draws cards before the opponent, and thus avoids the drawback of Howling Mine- an Abrupt Decay after their upkeep netting them horrible card advantage. The without Visions or Vise the deck lacks damage wincons, and you can see from Saffron Olive's take on Stasis that without these cards you normally build round Planeswalker win cons near hardlock like Ral Zarek.
    The printing of As Foretold makes Stasis much, much better. As such UR control with As Foretold, Brainstorm et al is probably the best deck set up to abuse Stasis.

    The number of Vise you play is proportional to the aggression the deck has. Fewer Vise means the deck has to control more- which means more flexibility is needed, more toolbox and Stasis is needed for longer- cards like Stifle and Misdirection are better here in this sort of build.

    The defensive shell is not sacrosanct here- it is all down to what you want to beat and how much you want to make the deck about Stasis. You might, for example, want to include other well known combos as well that fit- Rest in Peace and Energy Field will cheapen the curve somewhat, opening up new possibilities and radically altering certain matches.

    You can try to include a little bounce for end of turn bouncing of Stasis, but too much of this will result in dead, redundant cards. Similarly cards like Ensnare can bounce lands and tap things like Batterskull tokens but a free or 4 mana fog is not too impressive, even if under Stasis it can be really strong, so the odd one of these may make the deck or board but only the odd one. I prefer bounce and ensare only in old school mono U.

    The sideboard needs to aim at decks that are not so vulnerable to prison cards we use main deck. The ones to go for are often combo decks, where we switch to cards that stop them, such as Rule of Law effects, Flusterstorm, bin hate and Leylines etc.




    Propaganda or Ghostly Prison
    Pillow Fort Choice good against Eldrazi, D N T etc. Rubbish against cheat a creature dudes.

    Fevered Visions
    Kill card/turbo gas in one. Feeds Forsaken City in some builds. First draw makes it much better than Howling Mine, can also be pitched to FOW. I'd use two in UR Stasis where walkers are not the focus, but I have used 4 in some Pillow fort versions. generally post Narset I would eschew these in favour of more Walkers.

    The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale - self explanatory, bloody expensive, very good against critter decks.

    Howling Mine
    Turbo element for Forskaen City- Dictate of Kruphix may take the curve up too much as a playset, but could subsitute. Safer in combination with Root Maze, these are still a vulnerability the deck has. I don't play them myself much anymore, unless in the old style mono u.

    Force of Will
    Brainstorm

    Enough said. Unless you are going to try a Suppression Field, mono U or Root Maze type build with no fetches- in which case Brainstorm won't work- you should start with these.

    Daze
    If you try Root Maze then Daze is a definite no-no, otherwise it is a likely include in mono U. Less impressive in builds that go long like UR Zarek Stasis, most impressive in balls out Turbo lists with 4 Vise.

    Lightning Bolt
    Swords to Plowshares
    Two perfectly reasonable inclusions. I prefer Bolt as it can be thrown at things or face, and is in the best support colour, although the split card Fire and Ice is a bit more flexible than both, and better for my money.

    Ancestral Visions Ideal draw for some builds, it whiffs so badly mid game unless it is locked.
    This combos well in a build with
    As Foretold , - allows stuff to be cast under Stasis- for me it should be in all builds.

    Chrome Mox
    Lotus Petal
    Simian spirit Guide
    and sol lands- Ancient Tomb
    City of traitors
    Acceleration that can also act as a castable extra mana source under a Stasis. The more grindy the meta the fewer you should use. I like the sol lands in the PW versions where 4 and 5 cc PWs need to be resolved, in decks where a turbo shell is used the first three offer more potential.

    Zuran Orb
    A one of perhaps that does much, not least allow lines of play that would otherwise be risky. Good defense vs Price of progress and fair decks.

    Chain of Vapor
    Bounce one or a couple of your permanents to protect them, a random early doors unsummon on a flipped delver,or bounce your Stasis EOT. One or two may smooth a deck's performance, but no more than two- at best in mono U. Good in mono U, less so in UR PW stasis.
    Wipe Away
    I raised my eyebrows at this but split second is great vs Lands and Depths decks, especially the former which has little to no hand discard. It also works vs Miracles to bounce a Counterbalance late on and is good v Infect decks going all in if you live to get to 3 mana.

    Ensnare . Yes it is great under a Stasis, saves the odd dual from Wasteland, sometimes is just a 4cc Fog, or an extra card in hand to put back and shuffle away or pay for a Stasis. But don't be tempted to go to more than one. A mono U old school trick only I feel.

    Stifle
    Very good at protecting Tabernacles or Forsaken City, a well as the normal early doors fetch attack. Hits Deed as well vs. Nic-Fit. Its pretty mediocre in some matches. A more general 1cc effect to protect lands that I prefer is Pithing Needle set to Wasteland as Needle is excellent in other matches we struggle with such as Depths. I would leave it to the RUG delver lists.

    Static Orb
    Part-propaganda, part Stasis. One of these slows the game down, probably asymmetrically. An option in its own right over a Propaganda in the side or main of decks.

    Back to Basics
    The nuts against some decks, it should not hurt us too much if at all, awesome toolbox target for Tutors. Makes Eldrazi players cry with Propaganda or Tabernacle.
    Blood Moon
    UR Stasis can use this, but it means Forsaken City won't work.

    Winter orb - good vs Miracles or UW control and Basic heavy decks in place of B2B. Many decks only need one/two mana per turn to function efficiently, though, I would avoid it.

    Lair lands-
    these bounce a non lair land when they come into play, giving options under Stasis or Back to Basics. You can include one but sadly a URW one does not exist, and again, no more than one. The UWG one allows Krosan Grips and white board cards to be cast more easily, the UBR one allows Fevered Visions. A nice idea but ultimately probably a bit too cute.

    Enlightened Tutor .
    Glues some URW versions together, its potential card disadvantage of course.

    Island Sanctuary . Prevents self-decking in a Turbo shell, stops a fair few decks, including Eldrazi almost stone dead. Great E tutor target. Very binary as an option, does lots or nothing.

    Solitary Confinement , great card but it only really combos with Fevered Visions, I have never used it but it might work for someone, you would have to get the draw via something other than the draw step though. I would avoid.

    Energy field Might work in an enchantment control type list with Rest In Peace,although why not play Miracles Helm/RIP if you want that type of list?

    Planeswalkers- Zarek, Jace etc.
    These can be included but are hard to protect- Propaganda/Ghostly and Energy Field not helping at all. I have included a couple of Planeswalker lists in the decklist section, I like Zarek, Tamiyo and Teferi, hero in decks with a couple of sol lands.

    Narset, Ashiok, and even Karn can make a big impact, whilst in UW I would put small and big Tef on the teamsheet.

    Thalia, Heretic Cathar . Nonbo with Tabernacle, but awesome against a lot of decks. Especially good against decks like Enchantress/Elves that can use Sanctum/Cradle mana. Maindeckable, but better in Bant stasis with lots of other dudes.

    Suppression Field combines with Root Maze to really slow the game down to a crawl and punish fetch users, nonbos with Planeswalkers and Zuran. One day it might work.

    Pithing Needle . Can be mained. Wastelands can disrupt our Stasis payments, so that is why main decking it is great, although its ability to disrupt problem permanents like Vial, Hexmage and Lilly is not to be sniffed at.



    Board Options
    Null Rod and
    Stony Silence
    Great for Storm an other combo decks, despite potential nonbos with Mox and Petals. If you run Petals or Mox it might be worth running Spirit Guides instead if you also run this in the board.

    Ensnaring Bridge - fatties don't like it, nonbo with Turbo builds against anything other than fat dudes.

    Leyline of Sanctuary
    Also obviously used for Burn and many others. Good vs BUG, Storm, Grixis control and combo decks with targeted kill.

    Rule of Law , together with the pyroblast-able but pitchable to Force blue version Arcane Laboratory, this works very well at restricting combos like Elves, Storm etc. I avoid using creatures as they are nonbos with out deck but the effect is available in hatebear form. Pyrostatic pillar is a more aggressive card for Storm.
    Flusterstorm

    Chill Great but narrow card, for Burn, Delver and even some combo decks like Belcher. Will make our red spells cost a bit more, I would avoid in UR or URW As Foretold builds, but include in others.

    Equipoise . Fades out hatebears on our turn, and if Stasis is down they don't fade in. Ditto reduces available lands and artifacts, Tutorable one of that could be main decked in some D n T heavy metas. Great one of in a URW toolbox type deck, v. cute.

    Greater Auramancy Protects enchantments but not from Council's Judgement, sadly. Cute and unnecessary IMHO.

    Monastery Siege Probably more useful, but our 3cc slot has a lot of better cards like As Foretold.


    Divert
    Misdirection
    Can lead to blowouts for them, there are a very limited number of these that can be included, and sometimes there will be nothing else to Misdirect to. Best in mono U.

    Meekstone .
    Extra anti critter measure, makes Ensnare better too if you run one. I have never needed one in any version.
    Pyroblast Red is at a premium but it could EOT kill a Stasis as well as the usual functions.

    Armageddon Sometimes where Stasis gets killed, 'Geddon doesn't, especially good against fetch heavy decks with few real lands. It might work for someone, though it would be a different deck with a couple of Stasis, most likely.

    Submerge Theoretically great for the right metas, Maverick, RUG and Infect-ridden being an obvious one, although Swords or Bolts are way more flexible and can be main decked. Personally I would rather include some main board anti-critter measure and save a precious sideboard slot.

    Grafdigger's Cage - anti bin/Green Sun's utility, RIP does more against 'Goyfs, of course, and can be mained with Energy Field.
    Cursed Totem Anti Pridemage, Death-rites, Elves etc.

    Leylines- B and W- offer obvious early action vs many decks.

    True Name Nemesis Strong board card for Miracles and decks that do a lot of removal/countering and are essentially slow. Miracles decks often remove their whole compliment of Terminus against us.

    The following are potentially maindeckable depending on what you are trying to do.

    Tsabo's Web . Decent with Root Maze, and cantrips itself- perhaps a toolbox shell or a Karn included walker list could run them to good effect.

    Pithing needle Utility, exceptionally useful main deck if you run Energy field as it allows you to name "Wasteland", which sometimes is the only way a deck has of getting a permanent of yours to the bin without countering. That trick works against Death and Taxes, and similarly Merfolk, although they can counter a spell to do it as well. Against lands you should probably name the Stage, to stop them, as they run Ghost Quarter sometimes.

    Surgical extraction- anti reanimator tech I guess. Add in all the other ones to taste. Cage, RIP etc.







    First up Hooglands mono U streamed 2018



    Next up up the list I first used when Fevered Visions came out, very raw but fun and promising at the time.
    Nowadays I am on UR with a Zarek core from UR and kept two of the Fevered Visions from this.




    The version below omits Brainstorm due to few fetches, and has the classic Energy Field combo in.
    It is only 3 Stasis, because Stasis is harder to get online early with fewer acceleration effects. You could conceivably run A JTMS in this build as it is a bit more controlling and slower.

    pillow fort energy field, circa 2016 Magic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    5 Island
    1 plains
    1 mountain
    1 tundra
    1 volcanic island
    4 flooded strand
    4 forsaken city
    1 wasteland

    2 tabernacle at pendrell vale

    2 simian spirit guide

    2 lightning bolt
    1 chain of vapor
    2 pithing needle

    3 black vise
    1 enlightened Tutor

    3 rest in peace
    3 energy field
    4 daze
    2 howling mine

    3 stasis (I have toyed with this at 3 copies and a 'geddon, but have never run it main)

    1 wipe away
    1 propaganda (you could sneak up to 4cc for a single JTMS if you felt bold)
    4 fevered visions
    2 dictate of kruphix
    2 back to basics

    4 force of will

    1 spiteful visions (Miracles, omnitell, Enchantress etc.)
    2 true name nemesis (Miracles, Eldrazi, any slow and steady critter deck like Maverick that does not draw buckets full)
    1 rule of law (enchantress, high tide, storms including tin fins, elves, omniscience etc.
    4 leyline of sanctity (BUG, BG_X, Pox, Storm, Burn)
    2 chill (burn, ur delver etc.)

    3 pyroblast (U decks)
    1 pyrostatic pillar (miracles, storm, enchantress)
    1 wasteland



    My current list is halfway between Hoogland's UR and the above lists. As Foretold rocks.



    This one below is taken from The Source, and is the old style Zarek-Planeswalker build. It is less pillow-fort-y, and was made pre Vise-unban and Visions, it would be interesting to see where it went today. The link is below, too.

    The link for the above deck is here.
    http://www.mtgthesource.com/forums/showthread.php?26095-1st-Place-with-U-R-Stasis-at-Weekly-Tournament
    The test deck it was based on was written about by Adam prozac on SCG here:

    http://www.starcitygames.com/article/26146_The-Dragons-Maze-Of-Legacy.html


    Here is Saffron Olive's take. MTG Goldfish video content is available for this deck, made for "Against the Odds" a little while back. I would be looking to incorporate Fevered Visons in this list today, and Meditate would be a no-no for me.



    Here is a 2016 mono-u GP list. I would think about adding Tabernacles somewhere(which may have been in the board or omitted for cash reasons), plus Stifles, to help protect Forsaken City. I am hard pressed to justify just two Forsaken Cities, but it is what it is. The sideboard is incomplete. The deck went 4-4, by all accounts.

    mono u 2016Magic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    24 land
    2 Forsaken City (I think this should be 4, but the list says 2)
    22 Island

    14 Permanents
    4 Stasis
    3 Propaganda
    4 Howling Mine
    3 Black Vise

    22 Instants and Sorceries
    4 Ponder
    2 Snap
    3 Wipe Away
    4 Force of Will
    4 Daze
    2 Divert
    3 Misdirection



    This one has come from Caleb Durwood's SCG column. In the column he discusses what he would do with the deck.



    Here is my current list, it is a completely fevered vision free list, and is basically as an As foretold superfriends list.







    As with the Bant version, fair decks are easiest, and white decks with creature removal slots have a fair few dead cards against us.

    Death and Taxes
    I have lost game one in this match, but rarely the whole match. Again as with Bant their most active cards are Thalia, Spirit of the Labyrinth (mercifully rare), Sanctum Prelate. If you run a controlling version with a couple of Bolts or Fire Ice then you can have a more flexible game plan- Tabernacle and Back to Basics or Stasis means that Mother of Runes is one they tend not to keep around. Hard counters can be aimed at Spirits and Thalias early on, but if they do get through it is not time to despair. We have as many Tabernacles + Forsakens than they have Wastelands and we can even potentially get Stifles, Pithing Needles etc. in some builds. If you run jank like Equipoise in game two then even without Stasis Equipoise removes the hate bears for our turn. If you run a four Vise type Turbo list the matchup is easy, their taxes work against them when you drop an early Vise, whilst superfriends lists can at least control the board quite well with the walkers.

    Maverick
    Very similar story really- Teeg does little against our deck, Green Sun's taps them out early, making them vulnerable to Stasis or, if you run it, Back to Basics, which is good against their deck if they are unsuspecting and have not got a Noble down. They can wriggle out of stuff with all those Pridemages, Knights of Autumn and odd Decay, but generally you will lock them and win game one a fair chunk of the time. Submerge is not as good in the match as it appears.

    Chalice decks: Merfolk
    Again this is a relatively easy deck as with the Bant matches- few interactions with Stasis, Cursecatchers that only hit our counters, not our permanents or Stasis effects. Even a Chalice on 1is not that hard for us, Chalice with two counters as well is harder.

    Chalice decks- All in Red or Dragon stompy

    This is harder due to game two Pyroblasts and potential Blood Moon effects ruining paying for Stasis; Moon can wreck us if we are under pressure early, unless you are high on basics. Pyroblasts can nerf that key early Propaganda if it is main deck. You hope to win this one, not expect to, but although Chill goes a long way to slowing them game two, it hurts many of our builds.
    Chalice on one is a pain if you run a Vise heavy and less controlling build that has less of a long game. My superfriends version has at least got Force,counterspell and a bit more damage to the walkers, whilst the bolt-snap-bolt plan of the jeff Hoogland video has similar damage.

    Chalice decks- Eldrazi
    A few cards different in the build can radically alter this matchup. If you don't play acceleration or a tutor package into Propaganda or Bridge type cards the game one win percentage can be radically reduced, sometimes it is just too fast on the play. A Back to Basics or early Stasis/Tabernacle hit can be really important. Static Orb does a lot of work if you run it, as does Zuran. If you run Island Sanctuary you can cut their win options down to Pingers with a Howling mine down. Generally a t2 or 3 Propaganda does slow them considerably, it can be enough to get us where we need to be. As foretold versions can use the rather rude Restore Balance to good effect. The chalice power will depend on how many control cards you have.

    Delver decks: RUG
    Its pretty fast and very losable on the draw. You have to get the Propaganda or similar defences down or get the Stasis Tabernacle going when they can't Wasteland it. If you have burn this can be good. Creatures only hit you once under a Stasis, so the main issue is getting one down with a way to pay for it past all the dazes.

    Delver: Grixis
    Easier in some ways than RUG because it is slower- the game plan is to get some Propaganda down early and to take control - unlike v RUG the DRS can win the game without attacking so Stasis is needed for large chunks of the match, and Zuran Orb's ability can be vital in this type of match. Its not easy, but any version with Suppression Field and/or Maze is stronger vs Delver decks than one without.

    Delver: R/U
    If they draw lots of early critters they often tap out and are vulnerable to Stasis. The more early critters they draw the better it is for us. If you run Zuran it is very, very important to bring it in and draw it in this match, and the fact that some RU dever decks don't run Wastelands is of importance. Not running Zuran makes us clearly less favoured, but in general the match is easier than burn.


    Burn- Game 1 is super hard but not unwinnable in Zuran builds- if they stall out on lands early on -and you run and draw a Zuran. If you run Vise you can sometimes steal a win, but Vise heavy builds normally would not play Zuran as they are after less of a long game. Game two- Chill and/or Leylines, please, certainly some kind of plan is needed.

    Shardless BUG/BUG
    This is very difficult game 1, the more Back To Basics you play the better.
    Fortunately the deck is rare, as Grixis and four colour is better.

    Grixis and 4 colour snow
    One of the better matches- they can't deal with Enchantments easily and Tabernacle can ruin Lilly Last hope. Their discard backed with counters can win them the game early on, but their ability to grind later on is diminished by our key cards.

    Nic-Fit
    Never played it, at least it lacks Wastelands even if it does run Decays and Trophies- watch out for Decay.


    Prison decks
    Miracles Still hard as hell to fight through. Game 1 is always easier than 2, but the Fevered Visions is hard for them if you run it. My superfriends build just tries to out teferi/narset/jace them, and often does.

    Lands-It helps if they start to loam, which they often should not. If they don't loam, and think instead-it is hard. They will win via a 20/20 if you get a slow start. If they get Exploration or Mox down t1 you are up against it time wise. My old Energy Field version could win game 1 easily enough- RIP + Field is good, but game two, K Grip etc. to deal with make life hard.
    The Zarek planeswalker versions are hard for them to deal with.


    Prison Pox- Mono B

    We have no dudes for Smallpox to get value out of, and all that mutual mana restriction plays badly with our Propaganda. Lilly is a pain as it can be ritual-ed out off a single land, but resolved Turbo elements help. I like Leylines in the board for this match, regardless of the build of deck I have.

    Combo:
    Painter

    Worse than in the Bant version, which can at least run Krosan Grip. Null Rod type cards, Chills, Needles and Leylines help somewhat game 2, but winning the counter war is hard. Null Rods are great, but everything is Blast-able with Painter about. At least the deck has retreated post Top.


    Show and Tell- Sneak n Show.

    Their win con needs dudes to attack, but it is less explosive against us due to Propaganda saying "no". They spend a lot of resources getting Sneak down but need the mana to attack. I like to run Needles, and they can at least deal with the Sneak and the GB activation. Bridge game two is obviously a key card. My walker version runs no Propaganda main, primarily because its all about the S n T.
    Omnitell. Hard, lots of angles to cover.

    Reanimator- hard to even, its not unwinnable game one, better in decks with tapping abilities. Game two should be more profitable, especially with those Grafdigger's, RIPs or whatever you chose to run etc.. Iona, she will be game unless you have a stuff already down. Watchout for Show and Tells too in UB.

    Elves
    We have all the restriction tools, and unlike Bant can deploy Tabernacle to good effect. Abrupt Decay is a pain (stop me if you have heard that before), but we have those Tabernacles to wipe their board under Stasis, making the Cradle not that scary. Its much easier if they don't know what you are on for game one. Walker versions running Narset get some use, and if you can stretch to RUG walker versions you get W6.

    Storm- again I won't differentiate between the various versions, they all vary and all have a similarly hard game one for us.
    Game two- In comes the hate 'n' hope strategy.

    Belcher
    Game one- hard but not unwinnable, as we are a Force deck.
    Game two- bring in hate, stop the Reverent silence and wishing.

    Infect
    Its v hard but not unwinnable in the right version. Definitely not favored though, best if you have bolts and Needles main.



    U Summary:U


    Well there you have it. Stasis is a powerful and unique card, and need not require many bad cards to make it work in the right shell. Many similar restrictive cards to Stasis, such as Back To Basics, already get played, whilst much of the two approaches here consist of good cards in their own right. Cut the chaff that does little on its own and look for a synergistic deck.

    Nobody is going to say that a Stasis deck will be winning Grand Prix events anytime soon, but if you have the admittedly expensive cards in your collection I think you will be surprised at just what you can do with a well-designed Stasis deck. It is a wide-open canvass with two clear routes of creatureless with defensive permanents/spells and Bant creatures. Just leave the Chronotogs and Frozen Aethers at home.

    New cards don't come along that often for Stasis- As foretold we have discussed and Search for Azcanta also offers the possibility of 2cc selection and a traditional UWR control shell that can get value out of Azcanta until the Stasis resolves. It is possible one comes along soon but don't hold your breath.....


    Many thanks must go to SpoCk0nd0pe for invaluable help, especially with the Bant section.
    Posted in: Developing (Legacy)
  • 1

    posted a message on [Primer] Enduring Ideal
    Hey all. With the site about to go off soon, I wanted to say my goodbyes.
    I love EI, and I certainly think it has a bright but fringe future. The new card is excellent, replaces mistveil plains for sure and makes Nodes better.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • 2

    posted a message on [Deck] Pillow Fort Prison- White-X Enchantment Control
    Well , with the site about to go I would like to thank contributors to the thread.
    We just got a new toy with the new academy ruins land too. Keep brewing, see you on the other side.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • 1

    posted a message on End of an Era
    Always enjoyed the Modern section, it was well organised, and popular, and dealt with a huge format well.
    The general section worked well too.
    I felt the Legacy section died a while back. I don't think the Legacy Mod was actually active for over a year, unlike the general staff and other mods- I certainly never got a response from any messages, and the arrangement did not work- the developing section was perpetually full of "my first vampire deck" type threads by people who literally had never played the format, and lots of top decks were missing from the main section even before the threads were lost.
    I think Mtg needs a site like this, I note that the source has cooled down too.

    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • 1

    posted a message on So SICK of planeswalkers already
    Quote from user_938036 »
    So they recently add this feature to the game where you can use your creatures to attack another player's planeswalkers. This new feature will allow you to interact with planeswalkers in an obvious and simple way with cards you should already be playing.

    On a serious note, they did alter a number of uncommons, rares and even a few commons to specifically answer planeswalkers. There is a lot of paper in the format to answer the rocks. Planeswalkers are showing up more than ever because there are more than ever but they are far from dominating.


    Trouble is they keep pushing creatures and planeswalkers, and this is great for anyone who is 30. But for anyone who played in the old days, Mtg was about stack interaction, artifacts, and enchantments. People playing creatures were the ones suffering, and that is pretty much how a lot of old timers prefer it.....
    Posted in: MTG Arena
  • 2

    posted a message on Static ability on walkers confirmed not war of the spark exclusive
    I welcome this, but PWs still make the game all about combat, which is for me a huge issue. Limited by necessity has to be that way, although I have won a fair few limited games where I have not attacked. One of the reasons I would rather not play Mtg than play Standard, and spend time and effort to get people to stop playing Standard, has been their relentless focus on combat/creatures and PWs for most of the past few years, and their idea that players should not feel bad about anything, such as losing energy counters, having cards or lands dissappear or even being unable to attack rather than players not feeling bad about unintentional flood or screw, which is actually understandable. Of course they probably don't care about the player feeling bad when they try and sell their Std deck at SCG prices and no-one buys until they get a tenth of what they were asking for. Most people play Standard and realise it is a money treadmill, fair enough. But why does the money treadmill exclude so many traditional aspects of Mtg?

    This new design space just encourages more PWs. If they want a static ability that goes, why not use Saga type enchantments? Why make it about combat?
    I think they have realised how dull many of their pw designs of the same walkers became. There are only so many Gideons you can see, and I think they just needed to freshen up the space....

    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 2

    posted a message on Something bugs me about WAR (semi-rant inside)
    Honestly I don't care for the story at all. I am fed up with Planeswalkers doing the same basic thing, making the game combat heavy etc. The Sagas were a much better idea, and I hope we can lock the entire Bolas/Gatewatch up until 2050, because they have spent too much time thinking about showing the story on the cards and not enough time designing the game well, hence the ridiculous Standard bans these past few years.
    I guess the only way we can dump the whole lot is if the entire pile of PWs, Bolas included as I find him spectacularly dull, ended up flame grilled.

    I would like some new worlds, no planeswalkers and definitely no dragons, scheming or otherwise. I won't get this anymore than you will get what you want.......



    Posted in: Magic General
  • 1

    posted a message on [Primer] Mono Red Prison
    Stupid question, but why is this in developing?
    Man we need a sort out- threads like this should be in the main, alongside Miracles etc. Last I looked infect was lurking in developing as well.
    Why don't you pm a mod and get the deck moved to established (and call it dragon stompy as well as Mono Red prison, as that is what I have seen it referred to as most often)
    Posted in: Developing (Legacy)
  • 4

    posted a message on as a female player the new art style females is getting really annoying
    I don't like the depiction of men either from an intellectual rather than aesthetic point of view, and they have done nothing about it apart from make the muscles bigger with every set.
    Take a look at real male soldiers, as in actually physically fit men who fight and die, then have a look at what we see on Mtg; it is as far from real as the metal bikini art is for women. Only for women it is considered sexualised, but for male characters it is not.
    In short


    =



    Still in terms of art I don't like the modern homogenised style.
    To be brutally honest, I liked the old artist lead approach that bought us Foglios et al. Sure some sucked, but the variation was appealing.
    Nobody would be interested in Mishra's factory winter if it were an old card but with the modern art. I would ratehr a Stasis every now and then, regardless of how sexualised it is.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 1

    posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 26/11/2018)
    People want bans/unbans on how the format feels to them. Not on how it is. Data needs to be taken on how people feel about the format, not just on how fast the data says it is.

    I find it interesting length of games are being measured in turns, not actions, and not actual time to complete a game. A turn takes longer if there are more things to do on it. Cheap spells, moxen, force, bainstorm, and fast mana (moxen, sol lands) mean that a t3 game of Vintage or Legacy takes longer than Modern t3 wins. Perhaps when esyablishing how fast games are should be measured on completed actions by each player.
    Also the difference between game one and two needs to be noted. With hateful cards like RIP and Stony Silence about game twos often end up way longer than game one.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • To post a comment, please or register a new account.