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By: Kumagoro42, Gianluca Aicardi
Feb 15 2019 12:00pm
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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. Show and Tell
  4. Announcements
  5. What's Next

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

by Kumagoro

 Weekly reminder, March: Off the Machines is officially a thing that will officially happen, which means Cloudpost will be banned in all formats for the entire month of March.

 Also, card prices on MTGO keep going down, except for the cards I really want to buy. Figures.


  • Event Number: 9.05, Week 422 BE
  • Date: February 9
  • Attendance: 11
  • Rounds: 3
  • Subformat: Standard
  • Winner: Bandit Keith with Soldier
  • Runner-up: ThyShuffler with Vampire
  • 1 Loss: _Kumagoro_ with Wizards, AJ_Impy with Angel, lovetapsmtg with Skeleton, CruelHellraiser with Warrior
  • Underdog Prize: lovetapsmtg with Skeleton
  • Tribes: Angel, Fungus, Knight (x2), Skeleton, Soldier, Vampire (x2), Warrior, Wizard (x2)
  • Event link (with all players, pairings, standings, decks, and results): here it is

 Standard is back, with a serving of Ravnica Allegiance to shake things up a little bit. But not at the top, where Bandit Keith wins his very first Standard event while piloting a Boros Soldiers list (new entry on our cheapest undefeated leaderboard) that didn't require any assistance from the latest set, perhaps because Boros wasn't one of the Allegiance guilds.


 Orzhov was in Allegiance, though, so the other finalist, ThyShuffler, was able to reinforce his Vampires with some natural additions like the reprints of Godless Shrine and Mortify.


 As for me, I continued my Prime Speaker Vannifar month with a build based on her Wizard subtype.


 The Standard pool doesn't have any good creature to untap her along the way to keep Podding along, so I just went with Wizards with a good ETB effect, like Exclusion Mage and the often decisive Tempest Caller, all while waiting to reach the curve-toppers. In hindsight, I think Carnage Tyrant wasn't even needed; Pelakka Wurm gave me a life respite in a couple occasions, but what I really wanted was a nice flier, and Riddlemaster Sphinx should've been my first choice over Dream Eater, as they mostly have the same role in the deck but the Sphinx's body is bigger. Also, Mesmerizing Benthid is okay, but Biogenic Ooze is incredible, it should be included in multiples, since it also grows Vannifar. And since this build tends to stabilize the board so it ends up stuck in ground stallings, Vivien Reid is a valuable card to break these situations.

 Moving on, lovetapsmtg proved Skeleton is a overlooked tribe in Standard. It has a strong lord in Death Baron, a nice finisher in Bone Dragon, and two different recurring creatures in Reassembling Skeleton and Gutterbones, which means you can use Phyrexian Scriptures as a suspended Damnation and Vicious Offering as a Dismember, and then bring back most of your team later.


 Last but not least, CruelHellraiser made use of a ton of new cards to engineer a Gruul Warrior deck based around riot and Rhythm of the Wild in particular, while taking inspiration from the Standard Green Stompy list with Pelt Collector at the core. The fact that Vannifar and her Wizards was able to stop such Warrior rampage twice makes me very proud.



 Here's the prices of all the featured decks, courtesy of the amazing Deck Pricer from mtgGoldfish (MTGO Traders prices as of February 15, 2019):

  • Bandit Keith's Soldiers: $3.48
  • ThyShuffler's Vampires: $4.97
  • Kumagoro's Wizards: $54.99
  • lovetapsmtg's Skeletons: $1.84
  • CruelHellraiser's Warriors: $10.96

 The Top 10 Cheapest Decks that Went Undefeated

  1. SirFalcon2008's Goblins, $1.54, 1st place on Event 289
  2. mihahitlor's Warriors, $1.95, 1st place on Event 233
  3. morpphling's Vampires, $2.25, 1st place on Event 285
  4. morpphling's Goblins, $2.35, 2nd place on Event 102
  5. JogandoPelado's Berserkers, $2.80, 1st place on Event 248
  6. kokonade1000's Berserkers, $2.95, 2nd place on Event 354
  7. Gq1rf7's Goblins, $3.32, 1st place on Event 154
  8. Bandit Keith's Soldiers, $3.48, 1st place on Event 422
  9. MisterMojoRising's Insects, $3.55, 2nd place on Event 201
  10. Gq1rf7's Goblins, $3.58, 1st place on Event 169

 The Top 5 Cheapest Non-Goblin 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. JogandoPelado's Berserkers, $2.80, 1st place on Event 248
  4. kokonade1000's Berserkers, $2.95, 2nd place on Event 354
  5. Bandit Keith's Soldiers, $3.48, 1st place on Event 422

 NOTE: not adjusted to current prices; data collected since Event 85.


 Blast from the recent past: I never went around to publish (my bad) lowman02's video commentary of his January adventure with Rebels.

 Neither he nor Generalissimo have been around lately. I hope they're both fine and will be back soon. In the meantime, here's what lowman said about his deck:

 LOWMAN02: "Rebel Rebel" (in ode to the late David Bowie) came about as a desire to play the Land Tax/Armageddon engine in Tribal Wars – at the time of this deck's inception, I'd noticed that a lot of the decks that existed cheated on mana in some fundamental way, either through reanimating or cheating into play big things way sooner than would naturally be possible, or through the use of Cloudpost, so I was determined to make a deck that punished mana bases aggressively to accrue virtual card advantage.


 This deck was designed to have a very strong game plan against either speed aggro, through the use of the Rebel tutor chain (Aven Riftwatcher is a beating in this matchup, especially with Lin Sivvi, Defiant Hero's recursion going on), and/or speed combo (reanimator, Sneak Attack, Show and Tell, etc.), through the use of Swords to Plowshares, Path to Exile, Karakas, and Whipcorder (it also "hot-techs" a Relic of Progenitus).


 Despite Land Tax being of value in both the aggro and speed combo matchups, it really shines in its synergy with Armageddon and the ability to generally demolish control or "Tron" style landed decks. Running Rebel tutoring and Armageddon in the same list can be a liability, as the two plans can be at odds with one another. This leaves a lot of decision-making up to the pilot in regards to value-based mulligan decisions, while play direction (i.e. going for a Rebel chain or a geddon) tends to vary highly based upon matchup. Rebels, as creatures, have not aged well, so while they still provide a ton of value off of tutoring every turn for free cards, the cards they find are underwhelming in comparison to modern threats. This means that the pilot needs to positionally use Armageddon after Land Taxing to keep a set of very medium threats relevant while an opponent goes to their top deck in hopes of lands to play their better cards. At its heart, this is an aggro/control shell, able to control directly through use of the best removal ever printed in the game and through actual card advantage from Land Tax and virtual card advantage off of Armageddon (if you can't cast your card, then I basically Mind Twisted it out of your hand), and to play aggro through an albeit slow tutor chain of very mediocre creature cards.


 The deck's win condition is highly fair: just beat down (generally sped up through a miser copy of Mirror Entity); on the other hand, the card advantage engine of the deck is grossly unfair. The deck's largest challenges tend to be ramp strategies (reference my game against Nagarjuna's Hydras) or deck's that are essentially not creature-based combo decks, for example Eureka, Show and Tell into Omniscience into name any critters that win the game. Despite getting some free wins off of Armageddon from time to time (my first two games in this tourney were really short affairs, unfortunately), this deck does offer a lot of decision-making to the pilot, specifically aggro and midrange matchups tend to be highly involved and interactive, making for some great games, like the ones I played against Generalissimo's Hounds just for funsies after the tournament has ended.


 Just to remind you of a few things:

 The Underdog Prize: During any event of the regular rotation (but not necessarily 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.

 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. There's currently one eligible tribe for the award: Sheep.

 The Repopulation Award: Some tribes get played only once (to get the New Kids on the Block Award) and then forgotten. Never again! Register one of the following tribes three times in different events, then play all rounds of those events with them, and you'll get a 3-tix certificate from MTGO Traders. The list of these tribes, established May 5, 2017, is as follows: Antelope, Goat, Incarnation, Nightstalker, Ouphe, Rabbit, Salamander. Already cleared: Atog, Crocodile, Homarid, Jackal, Leech, Licid, Manticore, Metathran, Monger, Moonfolk, Octopus, Orgg, Ox, Processor, Siren, Slith.

 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.

 We're on Discord! Join us from here, chat about tribal things with other tribal players and arrange tribal games on MTGO all week long! (Or your can just keep using our Google Sheets bulletin board).


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

  • 9.06 (Week 423 BE), on February 16: Modern
  • 9.07 (Week 424 BE), on February 23: Legacy
  • 9.08 (Week 425 BE), on March 2: Underdog
  • 9.09 (Week 426 BE), on March 9: Standard

Check out the ban lists and the event calendar

Art disclaimers. Revel in Riches art by Eric Deschamps; Show and Tell art by Jeff Laubenstein; Herald of Anafenza art by Aaron Miller.