Casual Kings #2
While I was browsing through some message board ads (a budget player must always be on the lookout for a profit, and get the most of his tickets) I came across multiple ads for Firemane Angels, 2 for 3 tickets. This got me thinking about Firemane Control. Normally, a typical Firemane Control would be about as far away from budget as you can get, with playsets of Hallowed Fountain, Sacred Foundry, and Steam Vents, along with a full grip of WoGs and Threads of Disloyalty in the sideboard, but that’s solely the R/W/U version. While this variant is ultimately more powerful than my prospective R/W/G version, the green version is about a zillion times cheaper, while being just as reliable, if not as game breaking as its R/W/U cousin. Here’s my list for R/W/G Firemane Control. It focuses around both global threats like Savage Twister, and recurring ones like Vitu-Ghazi, Genju of the Fields, and Searing Meditation, not to mention the cornerstone of the deck, Firemane Angel.
4 Firemane Angel at 6 tickets
4 Sakura Tribe-Elder at near nothing
4 Kodama’s Reach at near nothing
4 Blaze at half a ticket
4 Savage Twister at 1 ticket
4 Lightning Helix at 1 Ticket
4 Faith’s Fetters at near nothing
2 Genju of the Fields at half a ticket
4 Searing Meditation at two tickets
4 Sensei’s Divining Top at 3 tickets
2 Selesnya Sanctuary at near nothing
2 Gruul Turf at near nothing
2 Vitu-Ghazi, the City Tree at a quarter of a ticket
4 Pyroclasm at one ticket
4 Genju of the Spires at two tickets
4 Seed Spark at half a ticket
Total: My estimates add up to about 18 tickets, but prices fluctuate quite a bit. However, this isn’t to say that you should splurge, as you should be able to get this deck at less than 20 tickets for the whole shebang. Now, onto its performance.
I’m playing in the Casual Play room of Magic Online. If the deck does well there, I just might take the deck to the Tournament Practice room. I’m aiming for about an 80% win rate or more in the Casual Play room.
Match 1 versus sheater
sheater was packing a G/W/B beaters deck, with such goodies as Putrefy and Loxodon Hierarch. I was able to stall the game for quite awhile thanks to Savage Twister taking out his Llanowar Elves, Wood Elves, and Watchwolf all in one swoop, and my Faith’s Fetters on his Hierarch. He was in topdeck mode by this point in time, and lucked out in drawing Indrik Stomphowler which promptly took out my Fetters. However, by this time my 6 mana lands were online, playing a Firemane Angel. Convenient that my first striker has 4 power, while he has no creatures with toughness over 4. Firemane stalled the game for two turns, until my relentless top spinning finally found me a pair of Searing Meditations, and that warranted a concession.
The second game was less fun, as he had an extremely slow draw of 3 Kodama’s Reaches, while a Reach of my own powered out a quick Angel to go with my Searing Meditation. He drew no money cards, only speedbumps confined to the ground, as my Angel quickly secured a victory in three swings and some Meditating.
Match 2 versus Lord Slayer of Torm
This guy was playing a typical deck of the Casual Room, which was rather unrefined, but still entertaining to play against. His deck revolved around Hellbent goodies like Jagged Poppet, with Delirium Skeins to quickly gain the mechanic. He played out a Squealing Devil which was met by Lightning Helix, and then played a Skeins on turn three. I discarded an Angel in order to gain life, along with an extra forest and Top. He then played a pair of Volcanic Hammers, but ran out of gas after my Faith’s Fetters eliminated his threat in Jagged Poppet all the while keeping me at a safe 14 life. I resurrected my Angel on turn 9, and it was downhill from there. He was dead in four swings, a Sakura Tribe-Elder beating, and a Lightning Helix.
Game 2 was rather easy to win, as he overextended on turn 4, putting me at 11 life looking down 7 points of power in Rakdos Guildmage, Gobhobbler Rats, and Squealing Devil. I Pyroclasmed them all away, and my combo of Genju of the Fields and Searing Medition was able to take down any creature he played, all the while putting me farther and farther away from 0 life. I finished the game at 23 life.
Match 3 versus sith9
If I’ve ever see a more absurd deck than this, I’ll start building them myself. His deck was focused on playing Ink-Treader Nephilim and Natural Affinity. He then played Wildsize on every possible target, which netted him about 10 cards. He dug deep, and I thought the combo was over. Alas, he said he didn’t find what he was looking for, and by turn 5 I had Firemane Angel in play thanks to Sakura Tribe-Elder, and that was that.
Game two was less interesting, as he failed to find the right mana for his Nephilim, despite his Kodama’s Reach. He was playing a slow deck with few creatures, so I had sided in my Genjus of the Spires and Moutains, while taking out slower cards like Vitu-Ghazi. I connected with the red Genju twice, and then burned him out thanks to Searing Meditation and a pair of Helixes.
At this point the deck has performed flawlessly. Its reliability is significantly higher than I thought it would be, and Firemane Angel really proved to be the gamebreaking card I had hoped I was investing in.
Match 4 versus BuRn1nG
This guy was packing Selesnya Aggro at its finest. Llanowar Elves on turn one was followed by a Wood Elves on turn two, with an Umezawa’s Jitte coming down on turn three along with a Selesnya Guildmage. I blocked the Jitte holder twice with two Sakura Tribe-Elders, each time saccing them after blocking, but before dealing combat damage, as to avoid the making of counters. After stalling until turn 6 I found what I was looking for thanks to my Top, and Savage Twister devastated his board of weenies. I played my Angel on turn 7, shortly thereafter playing a Searing Meditation and a Lightning Helix, and this granted me a concession.
His draw was much worse Game 2, and my Sakura Tribe Elder held back his 1/1s for a couple of turns, before I found my Genju of the Fields. I played Searing Meditation and another Elder, and soon my 2/5 life gaining shock dealing engine of death™ took control of the game. His Indrik Stomphowler came down on my Genju, but I had a Lightning Helix with him at 4 life, and with the Meditation activation (that rhymes O.o) he was dead. If my deck can beat Jitte, I’m rather confident it can at least achieve numbers of some significance in the Tournament Practice room.
Match 5 versus Thorec
Thorec was playing an interesting deck that revolved around Krovikan Mist. He played multiple Mists and a Meloku the Clouded Mirror on turn 5, to which I had no answer. Over 7 turns of top spinning, I never found a Savage Twister, only finding a hat trick of Faith’s Fetters, which were only delaying my death for a turn each time. My first loss was handed to me after four match wins of 2-0, not a bad start.
Game 2 I sided in the Pyroclasms, and got rid of the Vitu-Ghazis, a Sakura Tribe-Elder, and a Blaze. This decision was just backbreaking for him, as even with a draw of two Krovikan Mists and a Meloku, his 1/1s wilted in front of my ‘Clasms. The Angel showed up on turn 9, rather late, but better than never. She was able to swing free of harm, as first strike is really proving its worth. He returned every single land he had in a futile effort to alpha strike me, but he was three lands short, and I won the game soon after.
Game 3 I saw my first glimpse of his permission facet of his deck, something I haven’t had much time to practice against. He Remanded my first Angel, and Rune Snagged it the second time, but his overpriced, underwhelming Illusions just weren’t laying the beats down hard enough. He used Eye of Nowhere and Boomerang to great effect in denying me the ability to resurrect my Angel for three turns, but I finally got it into play on turn 14. I was at 5 life at the end of his turn, looking down at a trio of tapped 3/3 Krovikan Mists. I untapped and thought for a moment. I decided to race him. I fired off two Lightning Helixes, one at a Mist, one at his face, and swung in for four, putting him at 13. Next turn he made the mistake of swinging again, playing Tidings, and thus only leaving one mana open. I then swung for four again putting him at nine, and finished him off with a large Blaze. Blaze has really been a sleeper card until this point, but it’s so versatile in this