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By: Tribal Apocalypse, Tribal Apocalypse
Feb 10 2017 1:00pm
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 Welcome back to Tribal Apocalypse!

   Table of Contents 

  1. Last Week on Tribal Apocalypse...
  2. The High Price of Winning
  3. Announcement Time!
  4. What's Next

Check the full archive for the "Diaries of the Apocalypse" series

by Kumagoro

 So, after some thinking and listening to the player base, it's settled: Primeval Titan is now restricted to its tribe (that is, Giant) and Archon is now Major League (so not Underdog legal anymore), both effective immediately.


The reason for the first change has been discussed in the past weeks, the Titan instantly provides an endgame (Dark Depths and Thespian's Stage) that has become too widely abused. And the Archons are just the best at reanimation strategies, better than some of the other options in Regular (with Ashen Rider giving Angel of Despair a run for her money), so it makes no sense the way they were currently judged as their junior varsity. Their recent streak of wins (4 in the past 12 Underdog events) confirms it.

Also, the following cards are bugged and therefore temporarily banned from all subformats until further notice (I'd like for someone to test them every now and then and inform me if they got fixed): Animate Dead, Dance of the Dead, Magmasaur. I have no news about other reanimation auras being bugged, please let me know if that's the case, since two of them not working seems to hint at more general troubles with the mechanic. (Then again, I just made a quick Gatherer search, and there doesn't seem to exist other auras of this kind, are there?) Ditto for creatures that deal with +1/+1 counters. (I'm pretty sure there are a lot of those.)


 Now let's talk about the Pure Reform, i.e. the introduction of more or less fixed ban list for the Pure format. I say "more or less" because it'll work this way: for every full 5 wins in the Hall of Fame, a tribe contributes a card that's dear to its heart to the Pure ban list. Keep in mind these cards will be banned for EVERY TRIBE during Pure events, but ideally they punish more the tribe that contributes them. And as soon as a tribe reaches 5 wins or a multiple of 5, they immediately have to contribute a new ban for Pure. As of now, the contributions will be as follow:

  • Human: 9 cards (47 wins)
  • Elf: 5 cards (29 wins)
  • Goblin: 4 cards (23 wins)
  • Vampire: 2 cards (11 wins)
  • Shaman: 2 cards (10 wins)
  • Knight: 1 card (9 wins)
  • Cat: 1 card (8 wins)
  • Kor: 1 card (8 wins)
  • Wall: 1 card (8 wins)
  • Wizard: 1 card (8 wins)
  • Merfolk: 1 card (7 wins)
  • Plant: 1 card (7 wins)
  • Eldrazi: 1 card (6 wins)
  • Ally: 1 card (5 wins)
  • Archon: 1 card (5 wins)
  • Berserker: 1 card (5 wins)
  • Kithkin: 1 card (5 wins)
  • Scout: 1 card (5 wins)
  • Soldier: 1 card (5 wins)
  • Soltari: 1 card (5 wins)
  • Zombie: 1 card (5 wins)

 A few tribes are on the brink of contributing a card: Elemental, Faerie, Monk, Spirit. (Also, Elf is just one win away from its 6th card.)

 Bazaar of Baghdad has done an excellent job of distributing most of the cards from the previous ban list under the new system. The final list will be mostly like that (I had already commented on it here), but I'm taking this weekend to mull it over a bit more. The first Pure event of the year is scheduled for February 18. I'll communicate the final list in the comments here, in the newsletter, and in next week's article. If you have suggestions, make sure to let me know.


  • Event Number: 7.04, Week 317 BE
  • Date: February 4
  • Attendance: 18
  • Rounds: 4
  • Subformat: Underdog
  • Winner: Michelle_Wong (Plant)
  • 1 Loss: ML_Berlin (Berserker), Deonmag ( Scarecrow), CruelHellraiser (Pilot), BrunoDogma (Rat), TLR (Kor)
  • True Underdog Prize: CruelHellraiser (Pilot)
  • Tribes: Berserker (x2), Devil, Juggernaut, Kobold, Kor, Lizard, Mutant, Pilot, Plant (x3), Rat, Scarecrow, Soltari, Specter, Wolf, Wurm
  • Event link (with all players, pairings, standings, decks, and results): here it is

 So, congratulations to Michelle_Wong for her first Tribal Apocalypse win! Plant did the trick for her.


 Also interesting, and successful, this Pilot list by CruelHellraiser. Nice to see Pilots (and their Vehicles) being played as (hopefully) a new mainstay tribe.


 And then, let's see... I'd say let's feature a Rat deck, we didn't see one of those in a while. This one is by BrunoDogma.



 Here's the prices of all the featured decks, courtesy of the amazing Deck Pricer from mtgGoldfish (MTGO Traders prices as of February 10, 2016):

  • Michelle_Wong's Plants: $281.72
  • CruelHellraiser's Pilots: $13.46
  • BrunoDogma's Rats: $16.00

 The Top 10 Cheapest Decks that Went Undefeated

  1. mihahitlor's Warriors, $1.95, 1st place on Event 233
  2. morpphling's Vampires, $2.25, 1st place on Event 285
  3. morpphling's Goblins, $2.35, 2nd place on Event 102
  4. JogandoPelado's Berserkers, $2.80, 1st place on Event 248
  5. Gq1rf7's Goblins, $3.32, 1st place on Event 154
  6. MisterMojoRising's Insects, $3.55, 2nd place on Event 201
  7. Gq1rf7's Goblins, $3.58, 1st place on Event 169
  8. Gq1rf7's Goblins, $3.70, 1st place on Event 145
  9. Gq1rf7's Goblins, $4.12, 2nd place on Event 141
  10. Gq1rf7's Assassins, $4.18, 1st place on Event 147

 NOTE: not adjusted to current prices; data collected since Event 85. A separate non-Goblin Top 10 is in preparation.


 Just to remind you of a few things:

 The Ishkanah Prize: The first player to win a match with a Spider deck by activating Ishkanah's lifedraining ability for a lethal strike of at least 4 damage, will get a 3-tix credit certificate from MTGO Traders. Spider lovers, or simply ticket lovers, start building!

 The Underdog Prize: During any event of the regular rotation (but not during the one-time special events), all players who are running an Underdog Tribe are eligible for a 1-tix credit certificate from MTGO Traders. The tie-breakers are first the number of Underdog categories (for instance, a tribe that's simultaneously Endangered and Unhallowed will take the prize over one that's only Endangered), then the points achieved in the final standings. During Underdog events, only the True Underdog tribes are rewarded (those are the tribes belonging to all three categories of Underdog at once).

 The Up-and-Coming Prize: When a tribe wins an event for the first time ever (losing Unhallowed status), its pilot will get a 3-tix certificate from MTGO Traders.

 The New Kids on the Block Award: When a new tribe is introduced in the game, or reaches enough members to be played as a proper tribe (i.e. at least 3 members, so you can build a deck that features 4 copies of each plus 8 Changeling creatures), the first player to score a match win with it will get a 3-tix certificate from MTGO Traders. You'll need a hard win, not a BYE or a win by no-show of your opponent. The tribes currently eligible for the award are Gremlin and Monkey.

 The Hamtastic Award: The Biodiversity Prize dedicated to the memory of Erik Friborg rewards each player who registers 10 different tribes (except Human, Elf and Goblin) during the year with a 3-tix certificate from MTGO Traders. You can go on and win the prize multiple times in the year, but you need to keep playing different tribes! (So if you manage to register 50 different tribes in one season, you can get up to 15 tix!)

 The Top Players Lockout: Every time a Top Player (either a Google Era Top 8, an Ultimate Champion/Tribal Player of the Year, or a seasonal Top 8) will end undefeated, they will not be allowed to register the same tribe and deck again for 5 events (i.e. they'll have to register a different deck or decks 5 times before coming back to the undefeated one). With "deck" is meant a specific, recognizable archetype (e.g. Wall-Drazi), which in some case will be linked to a specific combo card (e.g. Helm of Obedience). A list of the current lockouts is maintained here.

 Wanna test your deck? Tell us when you're online, and look who else is there and when! All of this here!


 The upcoming Tribal Apocalypse events of the Blippian Era (every Saturday at 17:00 GMT):

  • 7.05 (Week 318 BE), on February 11: Regular
  • 7.06 (Week 319 BE), on February 18: Pure
  • 7.07 (Week 320 BE), on February 25: Regular
  • 7.08 (Week 321 BE), on March 4: Underdog

Check out all the rules for the sub-formats!

Check out the full Tribal Calendar for 2016!



Since NO will not be by Bazaar of Baghdad at Sat, 02/11/2017 - 22:49
Bazaar of Baghdad's picture

Since NO will not be purified, still going with my list, I nominate Wall of Blossoms, or maybe Wall of Roots instead. Both are creature type Plant Walls. That way, with Plant and Wall each taking one slot, one can be the Wall of Blossoms and the other can be the Green Sun's Zenith, currently slotted in Wall. This way it doesn't matter which is which.

With Construct picking up a 4th win, that might put All Is Dust on a de facto watchlist.

Maybe AiD, maybe Candelabra by AJ_Impy at Sat, 02/11/2017 - 23:39
AJ_Impy's picture

Maybe AiD, maybe Candelabra of Tawnos, maybe even Cloudpost. The power of constructs and similar tribes lies in the fast colorless mana.

Cloudpost, yes; I had assumed by Bazaar of Baghdad at Sat, 02/11/2017 - 23:47
Bazaar of Baghdad's picture

Cloudpost, yes; I had assumed it was already on the list.

The only colorless tribe on by AJ_Impy at Sun, 02/12/2017 - 19:57
AJ_Impy's picture

The only colorless tribe on the list (excluding gimmick colourless like soldier or wall) is Eldrazi, which is being used to maintain the exclusion of Eye of Ugin (which is very powerful in all colourless ramp anyway.) So, unless Cloudpost gets a Natural Order-style guarantee, it's a fair target for Construct's 5th win.

Guys, we don't want to by Kumagoro42 at Wed, 02/15/2017 - 14:21
Kumagoro42's picture

Guys, we don't want to annihilate entire archetypes. You ban Cloudpost, you're chain-banning a dozen other cards, and basically guaranteeing nobody will ever play certain tribes in Pure again (or downgrading them to Urzatron, which is just a ridiculous proposition in Legacy), which in turn will open the ecosystem to all kinds of predators.
It's not that I want to protect Cloudpost, but it's sort of one step away from banning Island.
What we want to do is we want to take away the things that make a tribe (or archetype) over the top, not the things that make it simply exist. Goblins and Elves still exist in Pure, and are played, they're just not a safe bet anymore. It's the same with Wall of Roots and Wall of Blossoms, you might as well ban Wall as a tribe then. I can accept an argument for Overgrown Battlement, which is over the top.

Besides, why are we suddenly at war with Cloudpost and ramp? They didn't even do that well in Pure over the past year. Here's the last 14 undefeated tribes in Pure: Human (UR Delver), Goblin, Ally, Eldrazi, Demon, Shaman, Human, Warrior, Vampire, Human (BUR Delver), Angel, Kor, Human (WW), Human (RDW). The only deck with Cloudpost here is Eldrazi, by NemesisParadigm, from last March. As usual, aggro is king, but somehow it's everything but aggro that needs to be toned down. I don't understand this position, it's sort of coming from the idea that aggro is what Tribal Wars should be, but it's a very misguided idea.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not by AJ_Impy at Wed, 02/15/2017 - 19:08
AJ_Impy's picture

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying 'Get cloudpost out of Pure' (Quite the opposite, I'm more than a little fond of the card and enjoy using it to full effect), just speculating. Construct being one win away from a pure ban opens up all sorts of questions as to what the best card in the deck is. BoB's suggestion of All is Dust has some merit in one-sided board wipes are powerful, and the cost is easily mitigated in the decks which benefit. Candelabra, does anyone else beside me play it? It's a tad pricy which may well be impacting its appeal. Cloudpost is the strength of quite a few ramp decks, but as you say, it's a lynchpin of that archetype.

I suspect we might well be able to go for a tribe specific option when Construct gets its fifth win. Walking Ballista really is that good.

I defer to that reasoning. by Bazaar of Baghdad at Thu, 02/16/2017 - 00:32
Bazaar of Baghdad's picture

I defer to that reasoning.

Congrats Michelle! :D Plants by Paul Leicht at Sun, 02/12/2017 - 01:46
Paul Leicht's picture

Congrats Michelle! :D Plants have a storied history in TWA. Grats for bringing them and winning. :)

Good news! They fixed Animate Dead. by AJ_Impy at Thu, 02/16/2017 - 13:00
AJ_Impy's picture

No word on fixing Dance of the Dead, so we'll need to test that. No word on Magmasaur.

EDIT: We have now tested Dance of the Dead, it is also fixed.