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  • posted a message on Commander Legends EBAY leaks
    If the translation is correct, why can't we Legacy or Vintage players play Jeska without her always dying on the spot?
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on [Primer] Green Nykthos Devotion (includes Tooth & Nail)
    As far as I've read rules-wise and release notes-wise, playing back-sided land MDFCs as lands is legal, but they are treated as their front side for all other purposes (i.e. Kiora can't put them into your hand, and Wrenn and Six can't recur them, but both Courser of Kruphix and Crucible of Worlds can let you play them as lands).
    Posted in: Big Mana
  • posted a message on Kaldheim Modal Transform Mechanic Hunch
    Quote from DJK3654 »
    Perhaps auras, for instance, that have a spell on the back that gives a similar effect to all your creatures temporarily or that gives it only to one temporarily but for cheap or with the bonus of cantrip say.

    Those actually sound like excellent ideas for what MDFCs can be like! Rather along the line of Licid #X.0: aura on the front, creature with the aura's abilities and perhaps P/T boost as its actual P/T on the back.
    Posted in: Speculation
  • posted a message on Oops, no lands
    For a more combo-tastic "No Lands" Belcher list, this is a list I found and tweaked that is heavily based on izzetmage's list in https://www.mtgnexus.com/viewtopic.php?f=28&p=102736&sid=ef39200081095a8b99490e7ce6066cf3 (specifically http://nxs.wf/np102475):

    The deck wins on Turn 3 fairly often and on Turn 2 on occasion. (Turn 1 still needs the yet-to-be-achieved god hand.) The deck mulligans OK but not spectacularly. Speed-wise, it's slower but more consistent than Neobrand, and I think it's faster than UR Storm.

    Emeria's Call seems better than the 4th Valakut Awakening sometimes and worse than it in others, so jury's still out on it. (I've actually cast Spikefield Hazard more often than Valakut Awakening.) It's currently Emeria's Call so I can pretend I play Silence. Amulet of Vigor has definitely helped me combo off faster at times, though, so I'd rather it stay.

    The basic Recross the Paths pile looks something like this, from top to bottom:
    1. Turntimber Symbiosis
    2. Reforge the Soul
    3. 7th card (Pact of Negation, Veil of Summer, Shatterskull Smashing, etc.)
    4. Simian Spirit Guide
    5. Simian Spirit Guide
    6. Goblin Charbelcher
    7. Pyretic Ritual/Desperate Ritual
    8. Pyretic Ritual/Desperate Ritual
    9. Irencrag Feat
    10. Recross the Paths
    The topmost Turntimber Symbiosis is purely for Clash and should be bottomed in that Clash.

    The turn after you cast Recross the Paths, Miracle Reforge the Soul and hit Irencrag Feat mana for Belcher.

    If you have 3 mana when you Miracle Reforge, you can afford to replace Irencrag Feat with Desperate Ritual and make sure you put another Desperate Ritual in the Recross pile to still hit 7 mana for Belcher. Doing so lets Pact of Negation truly protect the combo.

    In one of my testing games, I ended up with enough mana for the 7th card in my Recross pile to be Wilt, then hit my opponent's hate enchantment with Wilt and comboed off post-Reforge in the same turn. It's moments like this - in Game 1 no less! - that make me feel like this deck can be competitive in Modern.

    Against Karn, the Great Creator, you can try Irencrag Feat into Shatterskull Smashing and kill a 5-loyalty Karn GC that way.

    Pact of Negation and Guttural Response perform better against Aether Gust, and Guttural Response protects Recross quite well, but Veil of Summer protects Irencrag Feat versions of the combo better and actually does something against targeted discard.

    Thundering Rebuke is cheap removal big enough to kill both Eidolon of Rhetoric and decent-sized Karn GCs.

    Empty the Warrens is a 15th sideboard card that should help dodge some hate cards.

    Your best tactic against Dredge is to combo off before they can kill you with milled Creeping Chills from your Reforge that they Dredge 7 cards from.

    The link on top has even more tips for how to pilot this deck.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Kaldheim Modal Transform Mechanic Hunch
    I have a hunch that most Kaldheim MDFCs will have an artifact or creature on at least one side (and most Strixhaven ones will have an enchantment or artifact on at least one side). A Mothership article recently said that MDFCs were their opportunity to print what are essentially split cards where at least one half is a permanent.

    I have a hunch that, like the Zendikar Rising MDFC lands, at least one side of the MDFC non-double-land cards will distinctly suck. Think Clues or Food tokens if they were cards.
    Posted in: Speculation
  • posted a message on [ZNR]Hell Hound of Akoum — Renzo Arana preview
    Now recommended by The Professor as one of the top 5 Modern cards in the set.

    I'd find that remark easier to believe if Small Zoo didn't already have a revival and then die out again a year or less ago. From my testing, Burn would rather play Wayward Guide-Beast because it has Haste and therefore deals more damage on Turn 1, and as long as it bounces no lands on Turn 2 or it's not played on Turn 1, the Guide-Beast's drawback is quite ignorable. The Hellhound also has a toughness of 1 and is therefore vulnerable to Wrenn and Six, Gut Shot, and Lava Dart (all of which are currently reasonably popular in Modern; blame R(x) Prowess for the last 2). Using land drops to protect the Hellhound from them is like sandbagging and then using instants to protect Prowess guys from Bolt--you ain't using them to push through damage anymore. I find it tough to believe that Hellhound and other Zendikar Rising cards can make Small Zoo popular yet again; I believe Zendikar Rising will help more popular decks more prominently.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on [ZNR] Top 10 Zendikar Rising Cards
    The last core set may have been a disappointment competitively, but Zendikar Rising looks outright promising in comparison! So, it's time to make Top 10 lists for the newest set again! As is tradition, mine is for my Top 10 Cards New to Modern, though feel free to pick any format or reason you want:

    1. Skyclave Apparition: It's pretty close to mono-white Deputy of Detention, except when it's forced off the battlefield, it does a pretty good Generous Gift impression. Creature-heavy decks, especially those with tutors, will love it.
    2. Wayward Guide-Beast: Turns out that as long as this guy bounces no lands on Turn 2 (use your Turn 2 land drop post-combat) or is played on Turn 2 or later, the tempo hit Burn takes for playing this guy is fairly negligible. Looks like Burn wants this, then!
    3. Cleansing Wildfire: Unless R(x) Prowess builds really need the actual land destruction against Field of the Dead decks, I think they prefer the cheaper cantrip. This card is better at slowing down Tron decks than any 3-mana card ever will, anyway.
    4. Inscription of Ruin: It does a decent Liliana of the Veil impression, a somewhat-there Liliana, the Last Hope impression with better removal and a tempo boost, and an OK Unearth impression. Yes, it can do only one thing at a time, but when that one thing is killing or resurrecting a creature, that tends to be pretty good! The kicker is gravy.
    5. Scourge of the Skyclaves: RB Prowess may start warping itself to include this guy. (From my testing, it will require some mana base changes and Gut Shots.) Aggro Death's Shadow builds with Monastery Swiftspear will also like him. This guy being a 5/5 on Turn 3 and a 10/10 on Turn 4 is not Magical Christmas Land.
    6. Spare Supplies: I suspect Eldrazi Tron would rather have the speedy card or two than the eventual life gain and potential extra cards that Mazemind Tome provides. Mazemind Tome kept Scrying instead of drawing cards when I tested it, anyway.
    7. Lithoform Blight: This card is a hilarious hybrid of Tron hate and anti-Blood Moon colour fixing. Yorion, Sky Nomad decks (especially Niv-Mizzet Reborn decks) are likely inclined to maindeck this.
    8. Myriad Construct: Eldrazi Tron may want this as yet another beater opponents may not be inclined to spend removal on. Eldrazi Tron actually being able to kick it is a plus. Then there are those nutty decks I'm already seeing that try to get it involved in a massive Empty the Warrens impression...
    9. Turntimber Symbiosis: At the very least, Neobrand wants this card as a land that makes mana the turn it ETB that's actually green. Some green decks that can make lots of mana, such as Devoted Vizier combo decks, that newfangled GW Field of the Dead Creature Ramp deck with 4 Elvish Reclaimer, and the more fringe Tooth and Nail decks and Nykthos Green decks may also want this.
    10. Akoum Hellhound: If Small Zoo comes back (it did for some time within the last year), this guy will be headlining it. Its Landfall pump plays nice with Small Zoo's love of Revolt.
    Honourable mentions include Feed the Swarm (it's mono-black and it can kill both creatures and enchantments!), Silundi Vision (slower combo decks and maybe even control decks may want the dig that can also be a land--I know I like it in my fast UGr Scapeshift build), Omnath, Locus of Creation (my testing says it's a new staple in Niv-Mizzet Reborn decks due to the fast CA, life gain, tempo gain, and decent chance at large damage; fun card for other WURG decks), Soul Shatter (imagine an easier-to-cast semi-Crackling Doom), Valakut Exploration (a tad inconsistent, but it draws 2 cards per turn when it works, and with Wrenn and Six and fetchlands, you'll be surprised how often it works), Ashaya, Soul of the Wild (a large, cool new toy for that GW Field Critter Ramp deck that turbo-charges Field of the Dead and is often a massive 7/7 or larger the turn it ETB--Ashaya is faster than Elder Gargaroth in that deck), Ancient Greenwarden (another large, cool new toy for that GW Field Critter Ramp deck that is its own Ramunap Excavator-like engine with a semi-Panharmonicon attached), Scute Swarm (note how many toys that GW Field Critter Ramp deck got?), Agadeem's Awakening (Death's Shadow and Scourge of the Skyclaves decks will want this as a Bolt-land that resurrects multiple creatures late-game), Shatterskull Smashing (Death's Shadow and Scourge of the Skyclaves decks figure it's a Bolt-land that might kill a small creature or weakened planeswalker one day), Bala Ged Recovery (yes, I have caught a deck using Regrowth in Modern lately, and since that deck plays Gifts Ungiven and Field of the Dead, this is likely better), Valakut Awakening (maybe for those more combo-prone red decks), Archon of Emeria (has more hate than Eidolon of Rhetoric, sadly has a smaller butt), Hagra Mauling (tapland or 4-mana kill spell? Your choice), Moraug, Fury of Akoum (this guy can kill pretty darn quickly even with only 1-2 land drops per turn), Skyclave Pick-Axe (Infect and just maybe Small Zoo or Aggro Death's Shadow may want this), Brushfire Elemental (it's like Plated Geopede except a lot faster--another pick for Small Zoo), Leyline Tyrant (Big Red builds with Ensnaring Bridge will have fun with this guy--killing it with something like Chandra, Torch of Defiance shaves at least one turn off the clock), Nighthawk Scavenger (Lifelink, Flying, and often considerable power may make this viable), Forsaken Monument (maybe Eldrazi Tron might actually want the ramp, life gain, and pump--Green Tron is more likely to want the life and appreciates the ramp, but doesn't really need the pump, and it's prone to blowing it up anyway), Linvala, Shield of Sea Gate (being able to provide mass indestructible or hexproof is nifty for creature-heavy decks), Nahiri, Heir of the Ancients (maybe for the sideboards of those Colossus Hammer decks), and Crawling Barrens (may be a worse Gargoyle Castle, may actually end up being a decent mana sink and finisher).
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • posted a message on Oops, no lands
    For something quite different, here's my first crack at "No Lands" Belcher abuse. It's basically BG Rock with Belcher:

    Goblin Charbelcher behaves like a 4-mana creature that can't block but that OTKs the opponent the turn after it ETB. It gets to effectively have haste if I have 7 mana...which I basically have never reached so far.

    Grim Tutor's speed is sometimes appreciated. The 3 life loss definitely hurts, though. Sometimes, I wonder how Karn, the Great Creator would do in Grim Tutor's slot. Sometimes, I realize that this deck's mana base is mostly taplands, Grim Tutor costs 1 mana less, the card Grim Tutor has tutored for the second most often is Assassin's Trophy (to kill opposing Karn GC), and I've even tried tutoring for "lands".

    The draw engine is Lurrus of the Dream-Den + Mishra's Bauble because this deck's average CMC is way too high for Bob.

    I suspect that Fatal Push sucks at killing 3+-drops in this deck, so Bloodchief's Thirst gets to be the 1-mana maindeck removal spell that tries to kill some things cheaply and painlessly and that scales better in this deck.

    Inscription of Ruin tested well in Jund and RB Prowess but hasn't tested quite as well here. It does do a decent impression of both Liliana of the Veil and Unearth, though.

    I'm not quite hopeful about how competitive this BG Rock build is. Belcher swings some slower match-ups in this deck's favour, such as that newfangled GW Creature Ramp deck with 4 Elvish Reclaimer, but the tempo loss from all those taplands often bites it in the butt in other match-ups such as Tron, other BGx Midrange decks, and control decks. The RB Prowess match-up wasn't as bad as I thought, though.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on [ZNR] Myriad Construct— Ali Aintrazi preview
    Quote from FlossedBeaver »
    I'm not convinced Myriad Construct is a good card either, but I would argue that its ability is better than hexproof (what do you have that's worth protecting on a medium-sized vanilla beater?).

    It's likely worse than Hexproof when your opponent can point a Gut Shot at it and it explodes instead of no-selling the card. There's also the part where Skyclave Apparition has no problem targeting Myriad Construct for exile.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on [ZNR] Wayward Guide-Beast— Weibo preview
    Quote from wallycaine »
    Quote from Lectrys »
    Quote from Lectrys »
    That combat damage to player bounce own land clause blows fairly hard. Whenever I play Burn, I'm significantly more likely to lose whenever I'm stuck on one land all game. This will pressure people to not play it on Turn 1, which removes some of the point.


    Maybe the power of a 2/2 haste trampler on turn 1 (that doesn't draw the opponent cards, like guide sometimes does) is enough to make it worth restructuring the build of aggro decks a bit to use this most effectively. A much lower curve (mono 1-drops?) could be quite happy with it. In modern, how about this, goblin guide, and swiftspear along with all the one-mana bolts you can get?

    In Modern, I already basically play Guide, Swiftspear, and almost every 1-mana Bolt I can get (Shard Volley went out of fashion some time ago and can't really get along with Wayward Guide-Beast). Then Eidolon of the Great Revel wins too many games by itself to not include, and Boros Charm's 4 damage instead of 3 has actually been quite helpful. ...You can see how, at the very least, Wayward Guide-Beast gets in the way of casting these 2 cards.

    Say I play Wayward Guide-Beast on Turn 1, always watch this guy deal combat damage to my opponent, and play a 1-mana Bolt every turn starting on Turn 2. My opponent is on 3 life by the end of my Turn 4. That's not a way to win (e.g. against Green Tron).
    It's worth pointing out that if you hold your land drop until your second main phase on turn two, you get to 2 mana on turn 3, which I believe nets you a dead opponent on turn 4 in your example. It takes some finagling, but it's fairly easy to maintain 2 lands in play with this beastie, though going any higher is probably out of the question if you're hitting every turn.

    Decided to use your tip and tried 4 Wayward Guide-Beast in my Modern Burn deck (kicked out some less worthy 2-cmc cards). Wayward Guide-Beast's drawback actually wasn't that noticeable as long as I could make sure it connected while I had no lands at least once. Looks like another strong creature for Burn!
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on [ZNR] Leyline Tyrant— Brian Kibler preview
    Tried Leyline Tyrant in Modern Mono-Red Blood Moon Midrange-Control. Dunno how competitive it is, but killing my own Leyline Tyrant with something like Chandra, Torch of Defiance, Chandra, Awakened Inferno, or whatever artifact Karn, the Great Creator tutors for typically shaves at least one turn off my clock and breaks board stalls induced by my own Ensnaring Bridge in style. Would Modern RG Ponza like this card, or would it rather play 4-drops like Tectonic Giant?
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on [ZNR] Myriad Construct— Ali Aintrazi preview
    So what happens when you target this with Unleash Fury?

    It dies and splits into tokens before Unleash Fury resolves.

    This also means no land from Assassin's Trophy, they don't gain 3 life from Lightning Helix, Stomp fizzles and they get no Bonecrusher Giant....
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on [ZNR] Deliberate— Noah Walker preview
    This also smells like Anticipate.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on [ZNR] Myriad Construct— Ali Aintrazi preview
    Quote from Ritokure »
    Um... okay? It's just a decently sized body that's good against spot removal and really bad against Wraths. Unless you're playing Commander, the Kicker clause might just as well be flavor text, because I suspect any scenario where you have 7 mana and would want to spend said mana on a big dumbo without evasion is the exact scenario where your opponent is sitting on a Wrath.
    That said, in Commander it does scales up to the nonbasics each opponent controls, so if you have a cheap Instant speed way of triggering this, this is a huge army on legs.

    Modern Tron decks can hit 7 mana either really easily (Green Tron) or with some difficulty (Eldrazi Tron).

    On the one hand, board wipes such as Oblivion Stone and Wrath of God make this guy look like a fool, targeting abilities such as on Karn Liberated and Skyclave Apparition make it an embarrassment, and humble lesser removal like Bolt and Lava Dart already make it crumble into tokens. On the other hand, it resists one strong spot removal like Path to Exile or Fatal Push!
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on [ZNR] Agadeem's Awakening//Agadeem, the Undercrypt— StarCityGames preview
    I'll try one of these in my Modern RB Prowess deck with 4 Scourge of the Skyclaves, probably replacing a land. It'll most likely be played as a Bolt-land, but I'm more likely to cast this than Shatterskull Smashing.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
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