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By: Paul Leicht, Paul Emerson Leicht
Jul 18 2014 12:00pm
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Summertime Blues (& Greens)

 

by Paul Emerson Leicht, July 2014

 

Introduction:
I felt the inspiration and need to draw a cartoon about this, while I was involved in a discussion of the shutdown of v3 in juff chat the other day. I think the cartoon speaks my opinion pretty clearly. :) Please forgive the scribbled nature of it as part of the inspiration was the style of ubiquitous xkcd.com cartoons that we often see linked to on Facebook and other social media.

As per the fact that the lettering was a bit hard to read, I redid the text bubbles in g.i.m.p. Hopefully it is much clearer now.

Summertime Blues...


Given the title of this article I couldn't resist including a youtube of the famous Eddie Cochran hit.

Swelter in the shelter, and Helter Skelter...
90 degrees fahrenheit weather under a hot tar roof is no fun. Particularly on the 5th (top) floor of a century (+) old building in NYC where summer humidity is legendary. Particularly without any AC because the apartment you are in is unrenovated and has iffy wiring. And you too might have the summertime blues. No worries brave reader we shall carry on and this too will pass. But since we need something to take our mind off these mundane travails let's talk about another woe.

The beta is or should be a few days live now as the ONLY client by the time this article is posted. It may be tough to use and in some cases impossible. However I do not expect that last to be the case for most players despite the intense amount of vocal complaints about the program. I dislike it and will probably not be as excited to play on it as I have been on occasion in v3 in the past. But let's face it, Wizards knows they have us over a barrel and we will still be slinging cards in some fashion as the months and years go by.

OK so this is the same old ground and the same old spiel we have discussed before and well circles... So moving on: In a flurry of deck building I have been playing Vintage in Juff against a wide variety of players and realized perhaps what we need is a basic how to build for vintage primer. I am no expert on this subject but having built a few decks I figure to share what I have learned so far.

Mana CryptLibrary of AlexandriaBrainstorm


Vintage Staples Toolkit

The Power 9. Duh. These guys add "win" to any deck. But nine is really a misnomer since Timetwister while important in some specific instances tends to not be an auto-include in most vintage decks. Some may feel the off-color moxen are similarly handicapped and should only be included when they may have a profound effect on acceleration or when you don't want to be vulnerable to land destruction. (Though there are plenty of cards that hate on Moxen too.)

Sol Ring (and Mana Vault and Mana Crypt) aka "the Rocks". These restricted cards are seen far and wide and provide fast colorless mana. For mana vault as long as you can afford a turn to untap it (only during your upkeep mind you) its drawback is tolerable. Even if you can't afford the turn, the 5-6 damage it may cause you will probably not be enough to swing the game against you. However it is a consideration and if you are playing a deck with little in the way of life gain/recovery you may decide to eschew it and Mana Crypt too. Mana Crypt is especially dangerous and if your opponent is on counter magic they can rely on your own device to kill you as long as they can stop your plan from working.

Of course if you can sac it in a timely manner that works too. One trick advanced tourney decks favor is Tinker via tapping an island and mana crypt, saccing crypt to fetch something mean (whichever part of the Vault/Key combo they don't have or Memory Jar or Blightsteel Golem, etc)  Also you should not let the danger fool you. Most games with Crypt on the table end long before the 3 damage (maybe) per turn becomes an issue.

Brainstorm, Ponder, Ancestral Recall, Thirst for Knowledge. One thing that makes decks work well is consistency. And consistency is much easier to achieve if you draw/see more cards. So for a deck that plays with blue mana this restricted quartet is a must have. Of course that depends on the space in the deck and that is a common tension within the format.

Library of Alexandria is not really a mana source and when you are calculating lands don't consider it as such because it is really a draw augmenter. That is to say, with Library careful play can lead to burying your opponent in card advantage simply by tapping this land at the end of his turn.

Massive draw tends to be symmetrical which is usually frowned upon in theory because whenever you give your opponent the same advantage you have, you aren't typically winning. However, as with many symmetrical effects, timing is often key (see Wrath of God). If you have megrim out for instance (as was the case in a game I played recently where my opponent played Megrim and in another where he played Underworld Dreams) Memory Jar, Windfall and Wheel of Fortune all become killers. You can toss (Black Vice)s down to finish the deal if you are so inclined. Another card that falls into this category is Timetwister which helps with Underworld Dreams and Black Vice. The Rack can aid you post-Mind Twist in finishing what the Megrim started.

In Microprose's version of the game, a common deck was built around Ivory Tower, Icy Manipulator, Winter Orb, Timetwister, Regrowth, Moxen, Wheel, Black Vice, Copy Artifact, Swords to Plowshares, and Wrath of God, with no creatures to speak of beside perhaps a Triskelion and (Vesuvan Doppleganger) for repeatable pinging damage.  Such decks are grindy and hard to defeat since they have multiple ways to delay and achieve their ends. I don't recommend such a deck online as it won't win much in tourney and won't be appreciated in non-tourney settings.

Yawgmoth's Will & Necropotence and Yawgmoth's Bargain.

These cards were quite popular and still are as parts of tourney winning decks. I don't know that there is a lot of use for them outside of that setting and as I am primarily concerned with writing about casual vintage play I won't cover them much here. Except to say that if you see one of these cards and or power you are likely facing a tourney ready deck. That may not be the case but often is.

Removal. Swords to Plowshares is king in this format as removal since it exiles almost all creature threats and keeps your opponents at least somewhat honest. Path to Exile is even better if you know you are facing a deck without basic lands. No downside exiling is some good. This is one reason I try to bring a few basics with every list.

Oblivion Ring hits  Emrakul, though unfortunately not usually in time. It also hits pesky enchantments/artifacts and most importantly Jace, the Mind Sculptor. Jace being the planeswalker most likely to be seen in vintage casual with Garruk (#1) a close second. There are others, Tezzeret is popular in his self-named deck (Tezzerator) and his second version is just as dangerous as his first. Oblivion ring takes care of all of these. However, the caveat is that O-Ring is subject to bounce, which can be a key factor in deciding whether it is worth it.

Since casual play rarely goes to 3 games sideboarding is rarely an option so when deciding what is an auto-include in your deck you don't have the luxury of working with 75 cards unless you are actually building to 75+. Which is definitely an option. There are plenty of 40 life/10 card draw games that take better advantage of bigger decks and there are players who only want to play against big decks. I don't have anything against that except years of ingrained training: "Thou shalt not exceed the minimum!!"

While I have begun doing just that by building to 61 it is hard to break such a strong admonition. Especially since it is founded in solid logic. The more cards in your deck the less likely you will draw a particular one. This goes back to consistency in play. If your deck has lots of redundancy then deck size becomes less important, particularly if you built in plenty of draw as well. However most tuned decks focus almost entirely on achieving the win con and leave little room for digressions. Which means they will be more consistently.

Of course the real question is: what is your main goal in playing magic casually? Are you still all about taking names and crushing dreams? Do you need to win with style and panache? Does the fun of the game itself outweigh win/lose? Do you feel you must be allowed to play your creatures and spells without hindrance? All of these questions should inform how you build, and think about building. Vintage is a wide open format casually speaking and even in competition it seems there is plenty of room for innovation though the major archetypes may already be decided and the tweaks may tend to be microchanges rather than sweeping.

Out of the morass of casual play comes the next rogue idea that takes a place among the tourney decks so let your imagination be your guide as you seek unusual or under played cards to use.

Basking Rootwalla Circular LogicGorgon Recluse



Decks:

To start us off this time let's talk Madness. No, not crazy like a bat. I mean the mechanic, as in the card Gibbering Descent. In my interview with the Legendary AJ_Impy I gave you a glimpse of his mono black manticores deck that featured this card and that list inspired this next list though it is not Legacy nor Tribal.


Let's start with Gibbering Descent itself. This card makes you and your opponent discard and causes life loss every turn. This symetry is easily broken as GD also has a feature called Hellbent which skips your upkeep when you have no cards in hand meaning you don't discard (but that is moot since you have no cards) and you don't lose life. Your opponent doesn't get this protection. If you have to hard cast GB it is not really worth it at 6cmc but if you can discard it to your many discard outlets it is relatively cheap at 4cmc.

The usual vintage package of Sol Ring, Mana Crypt, Mana Vault, etc are fetchable with Trinket Mage who also gets you Elixir of Immortality and Cursed Scroll. Pack Rat provides both a win con by itself and a way to discard. There is typically enough removal and sweeping in vintage to not be confident of going all the way with this guy but he does provide a solid threat and way to cast things with madness.

Fiery Temper, Big Game Hunter, Violent Eruption, Ichor Slick and Obsessive Search are your other madness cards and they all provide needed benefits. Cursed Scroll is yet another threat to the board and your opponent's health since you will be emptying your hand quickly with this deck. Masticore comes into its own with a Gibbering Descent on the table since he no longer has an upkeep cost, however this may mean you need to be more careful in how you manage your hand.

Elixir allows you to recover life lost from opposing forces and GB but is primarily there to help reset your deck if you discard something you need. It incidentally helps protect against such outlier cards as Surgical Extraction (but not Extirpate because of the Split Second key word) and Haunting Echoes. Rakdos Pit Dragon is a major finisher once you have achieved hellbent.
 

 

 

Some of you may notice I am continuing the discard theme with this deck. Swans, a formerly serious deck in Old Extended and then briefly flirted with in Modern is playable in casual vintage as it generally doesn't rise to the level of serious deck in this format. But be aware that some may feel it is too mean since it features land destruction as a sub theme to keep your foes from overrunning you with their lands and creatures before you can get your combo. Last month I showed you Swans in a straight deck; this time it comes with the full combo.

Which is very straightforward. Get an Academy Rector out and kill it or get Seismic Assault on the table directly and get a Swans of Bryn Argoll on the battlefield. Start throw lands at the Swans until it produces a dredge land and then start throwing that at Swans. Alternatively you can return lands thrown to hand via Life from the Loam. Abundance helps speed things up by allowing you to choose land/nonland for every draw. Sylvan library = draw 3 no cost when Abundance is also out. 

Get to 10 lands (or whatever their life total/2 is) and start chucking lands at them. This usually spells game over though there are certainly some surprises that could end your victory march. (Such as a Shining Shoal to prevent and redirect the damage.)

 

 

Vulcan, the roman version of Hephaestus was the god that inspired Purphoros. Here he goes quite mad. With tokens. This is more of a Standard format combo but I like the ability to fetch Deranged Hermit into play (via either Green Sun's Zenith, or Skyshroud Poacher.) and instantly do 10 damage to my opponent. This deck was inspired by a conversation with a player, Guilty Conscience, who I was chatting with about another deck I'd been working on and suggested some changes. That deck called "Genesis Sisters" is a spin off on the Modern deck highlighted a few weeks ago by Oliver Law. That list is shared below. The idea is very similar to this one: Get Purphoros out (with Rector or by hard casting it) and then play creatures/tokens until Op quits or loses.

The specifics of "Vulcan the Mad" has changed a lot and ended up very different from its start, but the core elements of Deranged Hermit and Purphoros remain. Which I hope explains the diverse list. In the deck below, again the Forge god is key but the tokens are made by Genesis Chamber. A combination of two deck archetypes that have good synergy. "Soul Sisters" (Soul Warden, Soul's Attendant) give you plenty of life, Norin the Wary helps here. And he stars as the main trigger for Genesis Chamber and Purphoros.
 

 

Aether Flash was an idea I had to make it easier to sac Rector but slowly I took those out until there is only one left so perhaps the Flashs are less good. They certainly don't help via Purphoros, except to make him a creature with both out. Otherwise there is little chance of him ever attacking. Probably the flashes need to be Oblivion Ring, Swords to Plowshares or some other removal. But I leave that up to you. The interesting thing about this deck is it is mostly comprised of humans so Angel of Glory's Rise helps tons when your opponent thinks they have you on the ropes. Hence the lootings and Unburial Rites. Ranger of Eos helps replenish your hand when the board is wiped or when you suspect it may be. Norin himself is very difficult to kill but clever opponents will try anyway. One way is with permanents and another is by countering him or his trigger. While this may be hard for you to stop, it is a good thing to be aware of.

 

This is an ultimatum: Concede or die! No I kid, the ultimatums are in the deck and the idea here is to use Wild Evocation to cast them. Repeatedly. This is no Dream Halls combo with smooth draws and universal fetchers to do your dirty work. This deck requires finesse and luck. You can affect the luck by timely casting of the right cards. Jace, Brainstorm, Ponder, Omenspeaker and Melek, Izzet Paragon are there to help with that. Future Sight was a suggestion by AJ (he and I discussed this after rehashing our old Ultimatums deck that we co-constructed a few years back) but I rejected it eventually as being a "build-around-me" card wanting cards like Sensei's Divining Top, Counterbalance and other cards of a similar nature. While that isn't a terrible idea it is a different deck.

 


Yes, I did go there. What can be more fun than having a handful of cards and still getting to do stuff? Discarding them to win! The theme of this deck is Mark Rosewater's iconic card from Mirage: Maro, our reworked Elemental who gets bigger the more cards you keep in hand. Ivory Tower, Empyrial Armor, Empyrial Plate and Venser's Journal all reward you for keeping cards in hand. Stormbind, Pack Rat, and WIld Mongrel give you something to do with those cards when Maro gets removed (as is inevitable in some games.) (Wheel of Sun & Moon) provides a way for you to recycle those cards after discarding. Alternatively it can be main deck hate against reanimator strategies. Shard Convergence helps put cards in hand as do the Guided Passages. And here I must admit something. I have long wanted to build a deck with Guided Passage that doesn't just lose. That challenge is harder than it might seem at first glance. Many a deck during Invasion Block Standard tried to break Guided Passage and while Burning Wish eventually gave it something to work with (cf, on the internet: Burning Passage) it wasn't what I had in mind.

Guided Passage almost always guarantees you will get the worst possible 3 for the situation you are in from your deck. The plus side is typically some cards are hard to evaluate by an opponent who doesn't want to carefully sift through the list to see what is what. This deck however takes advantage of only one feature of the sorcery. It essentially draws +2 cards and self replaces. This can be used to fix mana early or merely to give yourself more lifegain or toughness. It can be used to give fodder for the discard outlets all of which are guaranteed to do something fun.

One more fun thing I learned while building this deck (I did kind of know it already but I didn't KNOW it, if you catch my drift): There is a Maro in every color and there are some colors with multiples. I have to hand it to Mr Rosewater, he certainly gets around.

 

I did promise a deck and so here is one (mostly.) I meant to use more but when I sifted through all the decks I've been playing and brewing, the ones above are the ones I was most excited about sharing with you. Squirrel Prison is probably in my top 5 favorite deck archetypes ever. Despite the fact that people don't like prison style decks. This one can certainly play that game well. Opposition is monstrous when tokens are numerous but often I find the deck just winning via the red zone.

There is a reason, after all,  it fits into the Aggro Control category of deck types. While it can control things, it often just wants to swing at your opponent's dome. On the other hand Tradewind Rider loves to play the bounce game. Either to provide additional plays for Deranged Hermit or to keep your op off his good perms. Bouncing an Oblivion Ring with a Deranged Hermit underneath is just good fun. (I bet he will never target a deranged hermit again with that enchantment.)

Gnight V3.0 we did not love you but you will be missed all the same.

Gnight V3.0 we did not love you but you will be missed all the same.

 

Conclusions
There is no such thing as a good world that never changes. We are in the midst of some big ones. This game in particular is facing a crisis as players decide whether they can stand the new client enough to port over when the switch happens. As of this writing that will be in very short order on Wednesday morning sometime. I hope you do come with us. As much as I dislike the beta client as it stands now, it is what we have. And as long as I can, I will attempt to log in and play.

And also this: Vintage if no other reason should pull the veteran player and collector onwards because I believe we are possibly going to see a renaissance in many formats in terms of building as people rediscover all of the old cards they'd forgotten about. There are so many possible decks just within Vintage that I could spend a year writing just about them and not exhaust the subject. I promise I won't do that as I have other interests in magic but for now hey, where else but MTGO can you buy and play a fully powered Vintage deck for under $1000? I don't claim it is really all that cheap as most good decks have many expensive parts but it isn't nearly as expensive as paper is. Because, unlike paper there is no reserved list keeping the number of Loti, Moxen, and Blue IWINs in check, the prices should remain within reason.

Expect prices to go up, go down, go up, go down and everywhere in between. Most of all expect the unexpected because that is what life will hand us. It never fails. On the 30th of this month I plan to celebrate my 49th birthday. Hopefully it will be a better day than last year. (My SO ended up in the hospital at the end of it. I have to be happy she is home now.) And I hope for all good things for all my readers in the coming year. May we all prosper and be happy.

Magically,

Paul Emerson Leicht (aka Winter.Wolf and Telir on MTGO) 

19 Comments

How can O-ring deal with by Rerepete at Fri, 07/18/2014 - 16:11
Rerepete's picture

How can O-ring deal with Emrakul. He has protection from colored spells?

The other thing I noticed is that post VMA, there is a lot of power in the JFF room, and even more decks with Vault/key combo.

Yeah the power and early game by Paul Leicht at Fri, 07/18/2014 - 19:14
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Yeah the power and early game combos are everywhere since they are relatively cheap right now. Kids -- Candy Store. I guess. I have found that I want to play with power even if I don't have it so I identify with those who do. But I have been trying to find decks that aren't 100% broken while still have some competitive edge. It isn't easy without going the full route.

A person who gets Time Vault/key early is saying "Hey look I can beat you in one-two turns." aka "Watch me play solitaire." Strangely while that combo should be a tourney worthy one it doesn't seem to show up very often. I guess there is enough post sideboard hate (Chalice set to 1, Gorilla Shaman, etc) that it isn't worth it.

Anyway I am hoping that eventually Juff will settle down a bit as VMA prices rise again and people will play more reasonable decks. But for now grin and bear it I guess :(

With O-Ring, the spell by Misterpid at Fri, 07/18/2014 - 16:32
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With O-Ring, the spell doesn't target Emrakul - the triggered effect does. Emrakul doesn't have protection from effects, just from spells.

Precisely and thanks for the by Paul Leicht at Fri, 07/18/2014 - 19:09
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Precisely and thanks for the explanation Mister. :)

Cool stuff - just build a by Bartimäus at Fri, 07/18/2014 - 16:52
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Cool stuff - just build a squirrel deck myself to get my Lady a bit more excited in the Game:
Surprisingly, Not going the prison Avenue here...
But V4? After pete's 'the Sky is Not falling' Statement I decided to believe, draft and bought into
Power and enjoyed really great times. Today i spend hours After hours to find a way
Into the new client: it was simply pain. My personal highlight is the missing yard of my
Opponent (happens on both machines I use)- the info from the orcs on Solving it was
"File a Bug request".
Great- no clue, whether a game has ever excited and frustrated me more.

Yeah v4 is something to get by Paul Leicht at Fri, 07/18/2014 - 19:09
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Yeah v4 is something to get used to alright :( I am hopeful that things will get ironed out. Technically it is only 3.4x...so room for improvement right??Right?? Well anyway the graveyards are collapsed to start with in multi so blech but not the end of the world :( But if you really couldn't see it at all...now that's a game crushing bug.

The other thing I found out with Multi is if you are playing 2HG only one head of your opponent's board will show unless you hit the tiny tab to the right of the screen. (I thought someone schooled the v3 designers about collapsing stuff...) Ack! and I agree, totally frustrating & exciting experience.

Your lady likes squirrels? How about Squirrel Wrangler? Unfortunately not too much in that flavor vein in MTG but there is Acorn Catapult which made my day when I got one for commander and played it. Everyone was like "Oh how cute!" until I started using it :p

Squirrels Ruling the World by Bartimäus at Sat, 07/19/2014 - 02:31
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Squirrels Ruling the World seem to have some appeal for my Boss - though a
Swarm of everything can be a Force. I use the 'cute' acorn catapult in the mentioned deck
Comparately to your Commander Take :-)
The graveyard is still missing - no solution by Support so far. The say to Look into, whatever
That means..

You may note that Squirrel by Paul Leicht at Sat, 07/19/2014 - 03:35
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You may note that Squirrel Girl beat Galactus. (Marvel Universe) so there is that.

:-) by Bartimäus at Sat, 07/19/2014 - 06:11
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:-)

5 balls for the uncared by Bartimäus at Fri, 07/18/2014 - 16:56
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5

5 balls for the uncared squirrels in a world of dragons, demons & angels - Leaving Alone Nest combo

My only issue with the new by Elbinac at Sat, 07/19/2014 - 13:31
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My only issue with the new client so far is how much harder it is to randomly spectate the games of friends and clan-mates.

Filtering possible opponents to "my buddies only" brings up only players I've played against before, but have NOT added as a friend yet.
Presumably, I'm on their buddy list, then?

I have to actually ask folks what they are playing and where in order to watch a game.
Which kind of ruins the fun of randomly dropping in.
I suppose it could be considered a good thing for those who consider spectators a distraction.

I like when friends randomly by Paul Leicht at Sat, 07/19/2014 - 14:04
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I like when friends randomly drop by. In fact that is what sometimes starts off the friendship. Unfortunately when WOTC went about rebuilding the wheel that is MTGO they stripped out all excess functionality even the stuff with proven upside and no downside. I hope they restore those things as work gets done.

Elbinac's picture

The new system of floating windows would be amazing with a multiple monitor setup.
Though currently for me it is about equal in utility to the old chat system.

Which means I might upgrade my system just for that.
Having the main lobby and chat in a side window while whatever I'm doing is in the main window seems great.
As does the possibility of tinkering in the deck editor.. *ahem* collection while playing without tab juggling.

Some of the card border/foil treatment variations are pretty terrible.
Though the minimalist foiling of some looks great with the animation.
And the animations in general look better that the disabled options.

I'm mildly hopeful we see some re-skin options like we had for the old client.

This was a fun read. It by TheKidsArentAlright at Sun, 07/20/2014 - 00:34
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4

This was a fun read. It actually inspired me to dust off and update my old URW "Meddling Angels" deck I played in Extended circa 10 years ago. It was always one of my favorite decks to play and I wanted something more casual to familiarize myself with the new client. With about half a dozen games under my belt I can say that, one: it's still a blast to play, and two: I don't hate v4 nearly as much as I thought I would. Also, I really want to make Meddling Mage work, but there's too much randomness outside of tournament Magic for him to be super effective.

For anyone who wants to give it a try (I can't say enough how much fun I'm having playing with it again.), here's my current list. It's on the competitive side of casual, and my version is tricked out with Power, Forces, fetches, and duals since I already own them, but you could certainly make it work without them and the rest of the deck is pretty cheap. A rough pass at a budget version got me down to around $70 for the entire thing with the most expensive cards being $10ish singletons.

3 Stoneforge Mystic
3 Trinket Mage
2 Snapcaster Mage
3 Serra Avenger
3 Lightning Angel

1 Umezawa's Jitte
1 Sword of Fire and Ice

1 Sensei's Divining Top
1 Pithing Needle
1 Engineered Explosives

4 Swords to Plowshares
3 Lightning Bolt
1 Fire/Ice
3 Force of Will

1 Ancestral Recall
1 Brainstorm
1 Ponder
1 Time Walk
4 Preordain

1 Black Lotus
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Ruby
4 Flooded Strand
4 Scalding Tarn
3 Tundra
3 Volcanic Island
4 Mishra's Factory

Sideboard (Included since all games apparently default to best-2-of-3 now)
4 Disenchant
4 Grafdigger's Cage
3 Grim Lavamancer
1 Batterskull
1 Force of Will
1 Pyroblast
1 Red Elemental Blast

First off, the manabase is extremely greedy, like Ebeneezer Scrooge level greedy. Even with all the fetchlands and duals it's still bit me in the butt a few times and I may end up cutting the Factories for the 4th Tundra and Volcanic plus 2 Faerie Conclaves. Also, it is definitely not worth running off color Moxen, Mana Crypt, Sol Ring, or Tolarian Academy. The deck is very color sensitive and I've gotten more utility out of Mishra's Factory than those cards.

The creatures are pretty solid, but Serra Avenger isn't quite as good as I remember. I really need a solid 1 or 2 drop and will probably try Young Pyromancer and Grim Lavamancer at some point. Stoneforge Mystic, Snapcaster Mage, and Trinket Mage are all awesome cards with a lot of utility. Lightning Angel, I think, is vastly underrated. She's an evasive threat that plays defense while not dying to Bolt or Abrupt Decay.

I've been very happy with the removal and cantrip suite. The single Fire/Ice is there as the 20th blue card to support the 3 Force of Wills. I also feel that at least some countermagic is needed both to protect your own threats and stop opponents from doing broken things. I don't want to go overboard on the permission, though I could see possibly trimming 1 each Swords to Plowshares, Lightning Bolt, and Fire/Ice for 2 Izzet Charms and the 4th Force.

Anyway, this ended up being way longer and more in depth than I originally thought it would be, but if you're a fan of aggro-control decks, I strongly recommend at least trying it out.

I'm not sure about in by Elbinac at Sun, 07/20/2014 - 03:14
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I'm not sure about in vintage, but in Modern you can certainly make Meddling Mage work.
Gitaxian Probe and Remand work well to help you determine your calls.
You needn't fear over-committing into otherwise un-counterable sweepers they cannot cast.

And you can pair it up with the also hand disrupting zombie buddy two drop if you decide to go three colors.

As far as lightning angel goes, most people are favoring her *Flash*ier kin these days.
But I still have a soft spot for the ol' gal.

The thing about Meddling Mage by TheKidsArentAlright at Sun, 07/20/2014 - 04:11
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4

The thing about Meddling Mage is that he really only works well in a defined metagame with a small number of top tier decks, and casual Magic is anything but. Were I hellbent on playing him though, it would probably be in an Esper shell alongside Tidehollow Sculler, Thoughtseize, Cabal Therapy, and Gitaxian Probe. Remand, while powerful in Modern, is not something I'd want to play in Vintage.

You're probably right about Restoration Angel too, especially since I'm already playing Snapcasters, Trinket Mages and SFMs. I don't own them and don't necessarily want to spend the tix on them since I'm currently saving up for a Mishra's Workshop deck. Also, I wanted an excuse to break out my Lightning Angels that have been collecting digital dust for the better part of a decade now. That said, Lightning does have the advantages of connecting a turn earlier and Vigilance, so I'll probably be sticking with them unless I decide I need Resto for something else.

Now I have the opponents by Bartimäus at Wed, 07/23/2014 - 12:29
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5

Now I have the opponents graveyard, played succesfully some casual and some
competetive games: All in all it works but playing experience is down some 50% mainly
due to sloppy things like chat but mostly a really 'unmagic' feeling with the graphic interface;
Might be my personal feeling but slinging a Black Lotus first time in a tamagotchi atmosphere is just
weird and disappointing.

The learning curve is steep by Paul Leicht at Wed, 07/23/2014 - 13:18
Paul Leicht's picture

The learning curve is steep and the presentation is horrifying (more so if you have a huge collection with lots of singletons.) And the features you got used to on v3 aren't there. That's a lot to swallow. But as my cartoon suggests I expect we will. I agree that it is disappointing but hang in there. Hopefully it will get better. And if not we can make our views known, again and again and again.

It's without an alternative by Bartimäus at Thu, 07/24/2014 - 01:43
Bartimäus's picture
5

It's without an alternative as no Paper magic here and I do Not want to leave the Game I love, though yesterday my lady looked At the screen and said, what is that? Are you switching to some Japanese kiddy Game?