1v1 Specialists, LET'S DO THIS

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Gentlemen, BEHOLD! I have noticed that the decklist and strategies pages sometimes get clogged up with discussions on 3 or 4 player FFA, 2HG, or people throwing around the term "Straw Man" like they just got back from a vacation to Oz. I feel, in a sea of OMG 5 Suntail Hawks threads, that maybe there should be a little sanctuary for competitive 1v1 discussions. All the content herein is to be taken Super Seriously as I am ranked in the top TEN THOUSAND on Xbox and iPad 1v1 play. Without further adieu...


ANCIENT WILDS:

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CURVE:

0 (0): None

1 (1): 1x Joraga Warcaller

2 (7): 3x Elvish Visionary, 1x Fauna Shaman, 1x Ring of Kalonia, 2x Thornweald Archer

3 (10): 3x Beast Within, 1x Carven Caryatid, 1x Eternal Witness, 1x Manaplasm, 1x Spawnwrithe, 3x Wood Elves 
 
4 (8): 1x Briarpack Alpha, 1x Erratic Portal, 2x Natural Order, 2x Vengevine, 1x Wolfbriar Elemental, 1x Yeva, Nature's Herald

5 (6): 1x Acidic Slime, 1x Overrun, 2x Stingerfling Spider, 2x Thragtusk

6+ (3): 1x Gaea's Revenge, 1x Pelakka Wurm, 1x Terastodon

27 creatures, 8 other spells (though Natural Order might as well be a creature), 25x Forest (77.1%/22.9%)

THE WHYS:

- 1x Joraga Warcaller: Not as amazing as you think when you look closely (it specifically says "other Elf creatures you control"), but it's certainly not terrible either with 11 Elves (including himself) total in this build. Putting counters on him with a Ring is pretty sweet.  It'll give you a reason to call Elvish Visionary and Wood Elves back after you've taken advantage of their enter the bedroom, errr, battlefield abilities.

- 3x Elvish Visionary: Play a 1/1 for 2 and draw a card. Can't really see a drawback there. You've got synergy with Joraga Warcaller, Erratic Portal, Natural Order, and sometimes he(?) even contributes to getting a Vengevine back on the field. Run all of them.

- 1x Fauna Shaman: Gotta creature you don't want in your hand (say, a Stingerfling against Garruk), well, if you get to untap with her, "upgrade". Early game I don't mind pitching a bomb like Revenge to get a Wood Elves, you can always GET A WITNESS! later if you want your Revenge. Just in case you didn't know, pitching a Vengevine in your hand to go grab something (even another Vengevine) is usually the correct play...unless you're off to a fast start and you really want to put the pressure on your opponent. Also don't forget, she's an elf!

- 1x Ring of Kalonia: A lot of people like to go the Taunting Elf route to break up theoretical board stalls. I prefer smart placement of (just one, two is a bit much) Ring to push damage through. It can even sit on an early drop "ramp Elf" and turn it into a threat. If my opponent wants to use a removal spell on what was originally a 1/1 that already drew me a card or got me a land, they are more than welcome to. Putting this on a dude with Deathtouch (in this case an Archer a Slime) can catch an inattentive opponent off guard as well, meaning, if he blocks your 6/6 Trample/Deathtouch with his 6/6, you only have to assign LETHAL damage to his blocker (in this case, 1) and the other 5 damage will still trample over. The only drawback the ring has in this build is that it CANNOT be used with Gaea's Revenge though (it's a non-green source).

- 2x Thornweald Archer: Even it were just a 2/1 Deathtouch for 2, I would still run it. The Reach is a total bonus. He is also an Elf. He will at least trade with any creature in combat with the exception of those that have First Strike, are pro-green (in that case, he's not even getting into combat with them), or pro-damage, like a Fog Bank or a Dawn Elemental. Anything else is totally in this dude's whealdhouse. Run both of them.

- 3x Beast Within: One of the few removal spells green even has. As long as you're smart about the drawback, this is a totally good deal as it hits any non-Indestructable/Hexproof/Shroud/pro-green PERMANENT. Hit a land if you want. Hit one of your own. Hit one of your creatures in response to a Tendrils of Corruption. Do whatever man. The power is within you. Run all of them.

- 1x Carven Caryatid: AKA: Elvish Visionary number 4. Though, she can be a house against the aggro decks. There must not be be many retirement homes in Ravnica as the flavor-text states that "old-wood" is rare and that I am 9 years old.

- 1x Eternal Witness: I wouldn't play a Nature's Spiral in this deck, but I will play a more expensive one if it comes with a 2/1 body attached. Remember, it's any card, you don't always have to get a creature. Sometimes you just need 2 Overruns to put a dude away.

- 1x Manaplasm: Originally I wasn't going to run him (and I'm only going to run 1, not 2), but with all the new unlocks, this deck doesn't always need to wait around for it's bombs or bounce engines to show up anymore. You can just pressure them from the get-go with this and things like Spawnwrithe. Remember, it says any spell, so you can theoretically go t2) Elvish Visionary, t3) Manaplasm, t4) Natural Order on Elf for Gaea's Revenge, swing for 13 Even going t3) Plasm t4) Vine gets you 9, unimpeded. Try not to man plasm over the mic when you pull this off though, it's only a game.

- 1x Spawnwrithe: In the world of Duels, I would consider this a 3 mana Must Answer threat (but in his case, Answer also includes blockers with > 1 toughness). Remember, if he hits he's not a creating just 2/2 token, he's creating another Spawnwrithe. It can get out of hand very quickly. Remember he has Trample as well. That being said, I wouldn't go overloading your deck with stuff like Giant Growth and Yeva's Forcemage just for him, because, well, there is only 1 of him.

- 3x Wood Elves: Why yes, for 1 more mana I will take a Nature's Lore with a 1/1 Elf body attached. Thanks. Run all of them.

- 1x Briarpack Alpha: A fine combat trick with a 3/3 body attached. Sometimes you just flash him in and give himself the bonus to take down a x/4 or x/5. I only run 1 though because once his trick his done, he's simply a 3/3 for 4 mana. Without a bounce engine in place, he's just all Alpha. No Omega.

- 1x Erratic Portal: My only bounce engine in this build, as I feel that particular engine is not essential to performing well with this deck. Your cards are already pretty much good on their own. Drawing the second one never made me happy so I dropped to just 1 to make room for other stuff and to lower my mana curve a bit. Once you got this online though, shenanigans WILL commence. Feel free to bounce your opponent's creatures too if they neglect to leave mana up (just not the ones with ETB effects, mkay?). I don't get what's so "Erratic" about this though. It's not like it says "bounce to random player's hand".

- 2x Natural Order: Run both, weirdo. Obviously, what to get depends on the situation. Sometimes you just gotta Order up a Stingerfling Spider to prevent yourself from dying to flyers.

- 2x Vengevine: Awesome to pitch with Fauna Shaman, sometimes Natural Order fodder, and it always feels terrible to use a non-exile kill spell on this. Run both.

- 1x Wolfbriar Elemental: Even if you're only kicking this once, a 4/4 and a 2/2 for 5 mana is still ahead of the curve. The awesomeness only scales from there.

- 1x Yeva, Nature's Herald: Not essential, but once she's out makes combat for you opponent a nightmare if you leave any mana open. Also makes it possible to recur Vengevines on your opponent's turn as surprise blockers. The 4/5 body is nothing to sneeze at either. Also, she's an Elf.

- 1x Acidic Slime: I like having access to the effect, but I feel 3 is just way too much. One's fine to tutor as needed. Just drawing multiples of this never seemed too exciting unless my opponent was already mana screwed. The Deathtouch is great, but, the inability to get vertical like the Archers isn't worth it for 5 mana once he's done his initial business.

- 1x Overrun: Why not? Turn your "ramp" Elves into game winners.

- 2x Stingerfling Spider: Because you don't really want to just auto-lose to a bunch of Squadron Hawks and spirit tokens, do you? You can't Beast Within them all. Run both.

- 2x Thragtusk: I'm not going to run all 3 because I don't want to overload on 5 drops. 2 is fine though because he is really that good. I don't want to go into detail because it would be a total thrag to type it all out. You're just going to have to figure it out for yourself.

- 1x Gaea's Revenge: He will run wild on the control decks and can't be touched barring something like Innocent Blood or double Flamebreak (or Beast Within in the mirror, don't forget!). Sometimes you just want to Natural Order up some Revenge and get the job done quickly.

- 1x Pelakka Wurm: Again, 1 is enough. If you're in a situation where you need 2 of these guys out to live, well, chances are, will resolving the second one save you, say, more than 5% of the time? Didn't think so. Obviously the go-to Goblin destroyer.

- 1x Terastodon: And then sometimes you just want to leave your opponent no lands and a trio of 3/3s. Make sure you're actually going to kill them sometime in the near future if you do this though. If I ever get to a point where I have to hard-cast this guy for 8, I usually just nuke 3 of my own lands as there are only 2 other spells in the build that cost more than 5. 18 power for 8? Seems Terastic. (also remember, it says "up to three" on the card, you can just shoot 2 of your opponent's lands or the like, if you'd want, or none at all, if you're worried about your new 9/9 falling in combat)

THE WHY NOTS:

- Bond Beetle: He's cute I guess when you get that engine going, but I'd rather just have my non-engine dependent 1-of ring for the (albeit 1 turn slower) same effect and (once it's equipped) less of a mana investment, plus....TRAMPLE.

- Giant Growth: I'll take a slightly-less powerful combat trick that comes with a 3/3 body attached. Thanks though.

- Taunting Elf: Sadly, you're never going to hear me plead "I hope I can topdeck my 0/1!" instead of Overrun . I'm sure it's fine for you 2HG folks though (when all you wonderful people aren't trying to glitch it that is)

- Awakener Druid: The deck is a lot faster now, yeah, but I certainly don't want to open myself up to getting Stone Rained on turn 3. I really only need my lands, to, you know, produce mana. If I really need to stunt my mana growth in a pinch, I can make due with a Beast Within or Terastodon

- Caller of the Claw: Flashing in a 2 power creature these days is rarely impressive outside of a Snapcaster Mage or whatever 2 power fairies are out there. As far as the ability goes...whether it's a beat-up jalopy or a Testarossa, would you get excited about "upgrading" either to a Kia Spectra?

- Yeva's Forcemage: If you're really dying to completely warp your deck around Taunting Elf and Spawnwrithe, go nuts.

- Ambassador Oak: Not a terrible card, and he does make an Elf, but he's outclassed by the other 4 drops. Only for the most hardcore of Two Towers fans.

- Herd Gnarr: I herd of a good reason to gnarr include this in your deck the other day. It sucks.

- Momentous Fall: Now that the deck actually has a little bit of game before it finds it's bombs/assembles it's engine(s), there's not as big a reason to go tearing through your deck looking anymore. Still wonderful with Vengevine and Thragtusk, just no longer needed. We had our Moment, but there's simply no Ous anymore.

- Roaring Primadox: There's going to be a lot of you who think I'm on the pipe for this dude's complete dismissal, but Erratic Portal  does the job so much better and I'm not really missing the 4/4 body much. Don't even get me started on casting this guy into an empty board. When is it ever relevant? I'm sure it can be (emergency blocker), and I'm also sure that percentage begins with a decimal point. You know the bounce engine is not ESSENTIAL to winning with this deck, right? Right?

- Lurking Predators: Cute, can potentially get out of hand. But for 6+, I better get something like Debtors' Knell which WILL end the game in short order (most of the time, in that particular deck) than something that MIGHT. Filtering through unwanted lands is nice, but what happens when you reveal a Joraga Warcaller? AWolfbriar Elemental? A Stingerfling Spider? A Briarpack Alpha? A Terastodon? You HAVE to put that card on the battlefield. No may ability here. That seems poor to me.

- Primordial Sage:  I'm referencing my game screen as I type this, and I just noticed how the art in Momentous Fall looks like a pack of hunters starved for better card advantage standing over a freshly-killed sage.

- Soul of the Harvest: This is essentially a beefier Primordial Sage. Looks totally killer at first until you read the fine-print where it says "NONTOKEN creature". That's really the soul reason why I won't run him.

- Wild Pair: What does this card do the TURN AFTER (in most cases) you cast it? Let's see:

    - Taunting Elf <------------> Bond Beetle (depending on how the game lets you stack the triggers, I don't know if you can go Beetle into Elf on an empty     board though
    - Elvish Visionary  <----------> Wood Elves <-------------> Awakener Druid <----------->Manaplasm <---------->             Gigantomancer <---------> Joraga Warcaller (though searching him up seems like a terrible plan)
    - Fauna Shaman  <----------> Acidic Slime <----------> Caller of the Claw  <----------> Yeva's Forcemage (trigger stacking alert,     again!) <---------> Herd Gnarr <------------> Spawnwrithe
    - Ambassador Oak
    - Roaring Primadox
    - Yeva, Nature's Herald <--------> Primordial Sage
    - Thornweald Archer  <--------> Eternal Witness (A Bond Beetle pumping itself on ETB can go into these two as well, again, depending on     how the game lets you stack the triggers)
    - Carven Caryatid  <---------> Vengevine  <---------> Stingerfling Spider
    - Wolfbriar Elemental  <---------> Thragtusk  (though I don't know why you would ever go Thragtusk into Elemental, since          you can't...............KICK IT! *guitar*)
    - Elderscale Wurm  <--------> Pelakka Wurm

    Okay, that's not terrible, (and if it needs to be said, or if somebody was planning on reminding me, you can just get a copy of the creature you cast,
    if you have one availiable, I know). I guess it just boils down to personal preference I guess, and my pessimistic outlook on life that if I do run this
    as a 1-of (I don't think I could ever get talked into 2, let alone 3), what'll happen is I'll cast this and never have another creature to trigger it (since
    I believe the whole, "let's hold on to these creatures I could be casting turns 2-5/6 until I grow a pair"-plan is a bad idea).

- Wurmweaver Coil: Oh look, it's one of those expensive enchantments that opens me up to the dreaded 2 for 1. You could have at least had the decency to put Trample on here.

- Elderscale Wurm: Wurm can shut an aggro deck down, sure, but a Thragtusk or Pelakka Wurm does pretty much the same thing, since if this just gets immediately removed you've gained, at most, 6 life... and Tusk and the other Wurm getting removed at least gives you something in return.

- Gigantomancer: The potential is there, but what happens if you Order this up (or pay the 8) and they just immediately kill it? You got absolutely nothing out of the deal other than a gigantic letdown.

- Decree of Savagery: I'll just leave this to you savages and your Taunting Elf builds.

- Primal Surge:  For 10 mana I want a 100% guarantee that this will win me the game. Sometimes this is the Publisher's Clearing House guy showing up at your door with a gazillion dollar check, others, it's an email from a Nigerian "investor". I'm a fearful man.


BORN OF FLAME:

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1 (7): 1x Blaze, 1x Earthquake, 2x Flame Slash, 1x Lightning Bolt, 2x Red Sun's Zenith

2 (8): 2x Ruby Medallion, 2x Searing Blaze, 4x Searing Spear

3 (9): 3x Chandra's Phoenix, 1x Chandra's Spitfire, 2x Flamebreak, 2x Flames of the Firebrand, 1x Sulfuric Vortex

4 (6): 1x Chain Reaction, 2x Chandra's Outrage, 1x Furnace of Rath, 2x Obsidian Fireheart

5 (3): 1x Beacon of Destruction, 2x Magma Phoenix

6+ (3): 1x Fireblast (though most of the time this is for 0...plus 2 mountains), 2x Inferno Titan

10 creatures, 26 other spells, 24x Mountain  (27.8%/72.2%)

THE WHYS:

- 1x Blaze: A scaling source of damage that hits creatures and players? Seems good. Yeah, yeah, sorcery speed, but you're rarely going to find any of these effects at instant speed.

- 1x Earthquake: A Blaze variant that hits both players and all ground creatures (and most of the time our ground creatures won't care). You don't always have to wait to pop more than one creature with this. Sometimes you have to just hit the one or you wouldn't be able to cast this the next turn anyways.

- 2x Flame Slash: One mana. Four damage. To a creature. Seems like a fair deal as we can't always be waiting around for that Chandra's Outrage for 4 mana you know.

- 1x Lightning Bolt: The best one mana burn spell ever printed?

- 2x Red Sun's Zenith: A Blaze that shuffles back in your deck when you use it, with the added bonus of exiling a creature it kills? Let's see how often that ability can be relevant shall we? Doomed Traveler, Archon of Justice, Vengevine, Chandra's Phoenix, Purity, Dread, Goblin Arsonist...do I really need to continue? Remember, "dies" is shorthand for "put into a graveyard from the battlefield". That never happens if you Zenith it.

- 2x Ruby Medallion: Well, now that we're super burn heavy, one, many times we'd like to cast multiple spells in a turn, especially with Furnace of Rath in the deck, and two, there ARE some spicy creatures to ramp in to. Turn 3 Obsidian Fireheart or turn 4 or 5 Inferno Titan is pretty frightening. Even getting a Magma Phoenix out one turn earlier against the super-aggro decks can bail you out if your sweepers are MIA.

- 2x Searing Blaze: The landfall trigger is kind of a drag since we don't have access to fetchlands (shutting down the possibility of ever doing this on your opponent's turn, so it might as well say "sorcery" on the card), but again, with this build, most of the damage we do to an opponent is gonna come from our spells, not our creatures (Chandra's Phoenix doing most of the heavy lifting in that department (and you CAN use this to get said Phoenix back in your hand on opponent's EOT, if that situation ever turns up). If this didn't have the Landfall clause and did something like 2 and 2 (or even 1), running all 3 would be fine. As is, 2 is fine (until we get better 2 and 1 mana removal).

- 4x Searing Spear: Well, it's not like we have Incinerate or 3 other Lightning Bolts right?

- 3x Chandra's Phoenix: Our heavy lifter when it comes to combat damage from creatures. Sure it's only (non-Rath) 2 points at a time, but Haste is important, and since we're built around directly nailing our opponent most of the time, he's easy to recur, unlike those other Phoenixes.

- 1x Chandra's Spitfire: Some may say an odd choice, but this little spitfire will make your opponent loathe to tap out without any kind of air defense. If they do, well, feel free to go to town (don't overdo it though if you can't finish them). If they want to not play anything and hold up removal every turn waiting for you to "power" her up, that's on them. At least they're not really developing their board to the fullest, right?

- 2x Flamebreak: It's your Dollar Store Earthquake. Remember, you shouldn't wait forever to pop this, "hoping" your opponent overextends, as you're still taking damage from the creatures actually on the board, and from the card itself when you do use it. A 2 for 1 is still a 2 for 1. Don't get greedy.

- 2x Flames of the Firebrand: Arc Lightning rebranded. Questions?

- 1x Sulfuric Vortex: Hate life gain but think Blood Hand is a garbage card? Well, here you go. Remember, your life total IS a resource too. Manage it accordingly. (sidenote: It may just be me, but I have accidently confused this with Furnace of Rath at times, and vice versa, because the art looks sorta similar? You're probably right, it is just me.)

- 1x Chain Reaction: A sweeper is a sweeper, right? Handy for those times when Odric has 99 anthems and they all grant +1/+1, and when you need to clear the skies.

- 2x Chandra's Outrage: I find overloading on 4 mana removal spells (even with the added bonus of Shocking your opponent) to be an outrageous proposition. 2 of these seem fine. If you reallllllly want to run the 3rd Searing Blaze, I would look here for the first cut.

- 1x Furnace of Rath: Again, as long as you're smartly managing your life total as a resource, this card is INSANE. Sure, the effect is global, but who cares if you win the game at 2 life or something? This isn't college football. People can talk about the Hostility + Fireblast combo all they want, I find Blasting a dude with this out to be equally as impressive. This will also make your little Chandra's Phoenixes hit as hard as those terrible Firewing Phoenixes people keep trying to cram in to decks. If your opponent starts dropping 5/5s and above and is still at a relatively healthy life total, this can let you actually come back without have to drop 2 spells on 1 dude.

- 2x Obsidian Fireheart: Not the most imposing of mythic rares, but if you get to untap with this even once, you've got at least a Goblin Fireslinger that an opponent can only deal with by Stone Raining himself...and hey, a 4/4 for 4 is still pretty good.

- 1x Beacon of Destruction: Our Megadeth Invitational Card, and the least impressive of our removal spells, but it shuffles back in, and I had no problem running one Lava Axe last year, and this has the added bonus of actually hitting a dude if needed.

- 2x Magma Phoenix: More potential crowd control on a 3/3 flier with recursion (though if you ever HAVE to recur and recast this, things are probably looking grim)...and yes, sometimes you just kill this yourself for the win.

- 1x Fireblast: Free spells! Sorta! I wouldn't ever recommend casting this for the alternate cost unless you already have 8 mountains out or something, or if you are going to win THAT TURN (or the next).

- 2x Inferno Titan: Well, we have two now, and something to do with those Medallions. Worst case scenario when this hits you Arc Lightninged your opponent and cost them a removal spell. I can live with that I guess. Don't forget he has Firebreathing.

THE WHY NOTS:

- Dragon Hatchling: A firebreather with evasion is certainly better than those without, but you're basically just skipping your turn to power one of these up, and begging for your opponent to Time Walk you if they kill it.

- Pyre Charger: On an empty board, you have a Raging Goblin on turn 2 and, if you're willing, a Lightning Elemental on turn 3.

- Rain of Embers: Even if it were an Instant, this card is still emberassingly bad.

- Swiftfoot Boots: I just don't really see what needs Haste and/or Hexproof in this deck. I'm gonna dedicate slots so MAYBE i can haste an Inferno Titan on turn 6 or 7?

- [card[Torch Fiend[/card]: Odds are, we're going to kill in response anything that's attempting to be equipped, and if we lose to a Panoptic Mirror, so be it. Even if he's not already out on the field, you're still effectively paying 3 mana to Smelt something. If he hit enchantments too I would reconsider, but until that time, he's no fiend of mine.

- Fiery Hellhound: And now we have a firebreather without evasion. Fired anyone?

- Flames of the Blood Hand: A Flame Javelin that shuts off lifegain if you happen to leave the mana up. Hmmm. I think a Vortex accomplishes what you want to do with this bloody well, so you don't need it. Move on chaps.

- Prodigal Pyromancer: At the 3 slot you have Flamebreak and Flames of the Firebrand, and they do his job better AND faster.

- Firewing Phoenix: Okay everyone, reallllly look at this card. It. Is. Terrible. Even if they patch it to a 4/2 in the future (so your 4 mana investment doesn't die to Blister Beetle of all things), what are you really getting with this? It still dies to just about anything able to block it except the odd spirit token (and those usually tend to show up in 2s anyways). "But I can get it back!" you say? Okay. Spend 4 mana to initially summon. It dies. Spend another 4 mana to put it back into your hand, and then ANOTHER 4 mana to get it's fragile self back on the field. 12 mana to take advantage of it's recursion. Does that sound even remotely good? At least getting back a Chandra's Phoenix means we're furthering our goal of actually killing a dude. Geez, they could have at least gave him Haste or something.

- Furnace Whelp: It's an over-costed Dragon Hatchling! Whelp, I'm sure impressed.

- Chandra's Fury: Instant speed Rain of Embers except it's also a Flame Javelin. For 5 mana. I'm furious the developers keep trying to trick us into playing with garbage like this.

- Cone of Flame: I just find it hard to get jazzed about 5 mana sorceries which sometimes require me to hit myself or my own creatures. The aforementioned 3 mana "sweepers" will do.

- Fire Elemental: Yes, vanilla comes in all shapes, sizes, and temperatures.

- Fire Servant: You'd serve us all better by making way for Furnace of Rath. Thanks.

- Hostility: Now, now, tone down the hostility. I know this into Fireblast is, like, "the hottest thing ever", but how often do you get to fire the combo off into an empty or undefended board? Don't get me wrong, this card is still good, but I'd rather be doing direct damage with my spells than making poor man's Spark Elementals with them. It's what this deck is built for.

- Skarrgan Firebird: So a fair amount of the time this is going to be a 3/3 flyer for 6? Skarrrrr matey, walk the plank.

- Disaster Radius: Radius of a circle: D/2   Radius of a disaster: Palm/Face

- Dragon Mage: So if you get to untap with a 7 drop and actually hit them, aren't you usually winnning anyways? If you run this, just know that I am praying as hard as I can (to the point where I may have actually burst a blood vessel) that you rip 7 lands with this, and your opponent hits nothing but good stuff.

- Flame Wave: Flamebreak + Searing Blaze - Landfall + 1 damage  = 7 mana. Still doesn't seem like a good deal with all the other tools in this deck.

- Worldfire: You don't actually win if you cast this you know (unless you've got something under one of Odric's spells). Even the flavor text is horrible. What is "small" about 9 mana?

CELESTIAL LIGHT:

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0 (0): None

1 (11): 1x Basilisk Collar, 4x Serra Ascendant, 4x Soul Warden, 2x Swords to Plowshares

2 (6): 4x Ajani's Pridemate, 2x Knight of Meadowgrain

3 (8): 3x Kemba's Skyguard, 1x Loxodon Warhammer, 2x Recumbent Bliss, 2x White Sun's Zenith

4 (6): 2x Chastise, 2x Day of Judgment, 1x Marshal's Anthem, 1x Well of Lost Dreams

5 (2): 2x Baneslayer Angel

6+ (2): 1x Felidar Sovereign, 1x Purity

21 creatures, 14 other spells (though White Sun's Zenith is really a creature), 25x Plains  (60.0%/40.0%)

THE WHYS:

- 1x Basilisk Collar: Makes all your Soul Wardens into stone-cold ground killers, and allows Pridemate to buff himself. Also super effective if your opponent plays a Horcrux of any kind.

- 4x Serra Ascendant: Now, since we're not playing garbage like Sanctifier, Missionary, and auras, you're going to have to do a little more work to get these guys into 6/6 monsters. Que serra serra. I like to think of these dudes as mainly another way to turn on a Pridemate turn 2 with their Lifelink. I certainly don't mind trading an opponent's x/1 for this if it is indeed getting my Thundercats Ho! on (terrible show by the way).

- 4x Soul Warden: Confirmed furry. The easiest way to turn on your Pridemate. Also, if you wanna get real funky, turns your White Sun's Zeniths into pseudo-combat tricks if you have a Pridemate (or even a close to active Ascendant) up.

- 2x Swords to Plowshares: It's a one mana exile spell, where the life your opponent gains hardly ever matters. Questions? You can get super tricksy by Swording your own dude to turn on an Ascendant mid-combat if you want, or even buff a Pridemate. I would never recommend this unless your opponent was tapped out AND close to death though.

- 4x Ajani's Pridemate: This is the true centerpiece of the deck, and in a perfect world  you'll always have a hand with at least one of these guys. With all the religious undertones this deck has, I feel we could have gotten rid of the whole Pride thing and just referred to these dudes as Pope John Paws or something. Oh, we're referring to groups of lions and not rainbows? This whole Celestial Light thing has me very confused.

- 2x Knight of Meadowgrain: They could have just named these dudes Knights of Meowdowgrain to fit in with Ajani better. What you're getting here is a downright Meadowbargain. A 2/2 First Strike Lifelinker, for 2. With a Collar equipped, these guys can actually never be defeated in combat by anything that doesn't also have First Strike.

- 3x Kemba's Skyguard: So you may wonder why we're not running trash like Sanctifier and Missionary, yet I include these guys. Well, when those other dudes are done giving life, they are just garbage ground troops. Here, you're still left with a 2/2 Flyer for 3, which is always a good bargain in my book.

- 1x Loxodon Warhammer: Yeah, this is a bit on the slow side, but it is a WARHAMMER after all, and the Lifelink is extremely relevant. Another way to have your Pridemates buff themselves.

- 2x Recumbent Bliss: Sure, I'll pay an extra mana for a Pacifism with an Ajani's Mantra attached.

- 2x White Sun's Zenith: When people complain about a lack of finishers in this deck if you don't get an Ascendant or Pridemate going, I invite them to look towards the sun. Then we can all gather around the campfire and start singing "For I was blind, but now I see". Also, you better be using this on your opponent's end step, if you aren't using this as a crazy combat trick, nerds.

- 2x Chastise: Running all 4 of these is certainly a mistake, but removal is removal, right? Extremely easy to play around, but your opponent knows he always has a stern talking to in store for him if he ever attacks in to 4 open mana. Can also use on your own guys to get tricksy.

- 2x Day of Judgment: Well OF COURSE I do a Judge Dredd impersonation every time I cast this. You don't?

- 1x Marshal's Anthem: I don't mind casting this as an adjusted-for-inflation Honor of the Pure, and the times you get to tack on a one-sided Rise of the Grave? Well, that's just a total bonus.

- 1x Well of Lost Dreams: Also known as the well of lost games for your opponent if you ever get to start drawing cards with this thing...and with this deck, there are obviously a lot of ways to do so.

- 2x Baneslayer Angel: Your Bruce Wayne invitational card. You people who run less than 2 slay me.

- 1x Felidar Sovereign: Well, what do you do when the game stalls out but you're at 665 life? Granted, I've won more games stealing my opponent's Purity than when I'm using it in this deck, but it's still fine for the 4/6 Vigilant Lifelinker you get.

- 1x Purity: Sadly, the second ability usually is more relevant than the first (from my understanding, it won't shut down a Sulfuric Vortex), but it's still a 6/6 Flyer, and he'll close out a game soon enough.

THE WHY NOTS:

- Cathedral Sanctifier: Yeah, they're great for aggro-ing out early with a Pridemate and an Ascendant, but if you don't have those dudes, these guys by themselves are gar-bage. Why is everyone in such a hurry these days? This deck can play a long game.

- Elixir of Immortality: Maybe I have this in hand against Jace, maybe he mills it. Every other matchup, stunningly mediocre.

- Goldenglow Moth: The days of the Goldentroll Moth going off with Holy Day are far behind us, thankfully.

- Ajani's Mantra: These were great in March to War last year, but that was because you had Pridemate AND Searing Meditation. These (for the most part) benefit only Pridemate and the 1-of Well of Lost Dreams. Plenty of other ways to gain life in this deck.

- Ajani's Sunstriker: I guess these would be fine if there was a strike going on at the Meadowgrain? That's not a thing that actually happens in this game though.

- Angel's Feather: See: Ajani's Mantra

- Divine Favor: Only good to hold off an initial aggro-rush, and not even always then. Getting 2 for 1ed when you play this isn't as bad as other enchantments since you still gained 3 life out of the deal...wait, who are we trying to kid. That's still terrible. Would you really play a card that simply said "gain 3 life"?

- Lone Missionary: See: Cathedral Sanctifier. The only thing sadder than this card is walking in on your roommate actually practicing lone missionary.

- Moment of Heroism: Sigh, I love me at least one good combat trick, but there's simply no room for Heroism in this deck.

- Pearl Medallion: Oooooh lawds! It's a turn 3 Seraph of Dawn! Sinners repent! Look at the curve, we don't need to be ramping here.

- Slith Ascendant: Even less intimidating than the Star Wars kid with a lisp.

- Solemn Offering: I'm sure some of you are solemn over the exclusion of this, and it is effective against just about every deck in theory, but how often is this simply a dead card in your hand? It's sad times when you start Offering up your own artifacts just to get some benefit out of this. If you lose to a Mirror or Vortex, feel free to offer up all the hate mail you can spare. I'll understand.

- Kor Cartographer: I'm going to ramp into the most epic of Landbind Rituals, you'll see! Don't be a sod.

- Peace Strider: Oh look, it's a beefier Cathedral Sanctifier. Peace out strider.

- Rhox Faithmender: The key life totals in this deck are 30 and 40. This is bit of overkill in a 4 mana 1/5 body. No thanks.

- Seraph of Dawn: Yeah, it's a pain for decks like Chandra and Krenko to get rid of, but you've already got a favorable matchup against those two. I don't really have anything negative to say about this card, but there's better things you can be doing than jamming these dudes in your deck and warping your mana curve. I'm dawn here.

- Archon of Redemption: 2/2 Fliers for 3 and gaining life is one thing, 3/4s for 5, gaining 3, and mayyyybe gaining life from future fliers is quite another. Sorry Marley, this isn't good enough.

- Landbind Ritual: Hooray! You gained 10+ life or something! If you didn't turn on an Ascendant or game-winning Sovereign, why are you celebrating again?

- Swell of Courage: It's either a very expensive Guardians' Pledge, or does a very poor impersonation of a +X/+X aura (with Flash). Hey man, if that sounds swell to you, go for it.

- Beacon of Immortality: Again. 30. 40. If casting this for 6 actually gets you there, you're probably already in good shape.

- Celestial Mantle: You already know how I feel about auras. Two. For. One. City. You know the dude with this on is just gonna get chumped all day right? If you're at a low life total trying to creep back up, this still isn't doing THAT much. If you're at a decent life total, Overkill. This ain't Final Fantasy X. You don't get bonus XP for finishing a game at 8999 life.

- Serra Avatar: Okay, so in theory this is a great finisher, I mean, even a 9/9 for 7 is pretty good. However, this thing is a terrible defender against any kind of board presence from your opponent. Example: Avatar is an 11/11, if I swing with a 4/3 and a 7/7, or any combination of dudes with power =11, if you don't have a removal spell of any kind, no matter how you block, your Avatar is toast. He is vulnerable on two fronts. I don't know if I'd straight up call this a "win more", but he's certainly closer to that than he is to simply "wins games".

- Celestial Force: What do we get for 8 mana. A 7/7 body. and Cathedral Sanctifier's ETB ability every upkeep. That's exciting.

CROSSWINDS:
Show
CURVE:

0 (0): None

1 (5): 2x Kraken Hatchling, 3x Sleight of Hand

2 (9): 2x Azure Mage, 2x Disperse, 2x Fog Bank, 2x Mana Leak, 1x Spiketail Hatchling

3 (5): 2x Cancel, 1x Keep Watch, 2x Repulse

4 (9): 2x Archaeomancer, 2x Rite of Replication, 4x Talrand's Invocation, 1x Talrand, Sky Summoner

5 (7): 1x Bribery, 1x Followed Footsteps, 1x Future Sight, 1x Gravitational Shift, 1x Panoptic Mirror, 1x Sphinx of Lost Truths, 1x Time Warp

6+ (0): None

11 creatures, 24 other spells (Talrand's Invocation, Rite of Replication, Bribery, and Followed Footsteps (if not immediately dealt with) might as well be creatures), 25x Island  (31.4%/68.6%)

THE WHYS:

- 2x Kraken Hatchling: A control deck has to stall a little, no? He's also a fine candidate for Keep Watch duty. Running 3 can be a bit overkill though.

- 3x Sleight of Hand: Rip through your deck looking for answers. You have sleight problems if you're not running all of them.

- 2x Azure Mage: You won't always get to use his ability in some games, but he's fine for 2 mana. Plus, unlike a Hatchling or to a lesser extent, a Fog Bank, he's a terrific topdeck late game. 2 is fine.

- 2x Disperse: Remember, you don't ALWAYS have to bounce opponent's creature...and bouncing your own Archaeomancer is certainly not terrible either

- 2x Fog Bank: More stall. Funny thing Trampling through a fog is more effective than simply trying to walk into one. Again, 3 is slightly overkill.

- 2x Mana Leak: Of course is gonna run as much 3 or less countermagic as it can get it's hands on. Don't wait too long to play this though, as it obviously gets worse the longer the game goes.

- 1x Spiketail Hatchling: Force Spike on a 1/1 flyer? Seems like a fair deal. Will slow your opponent down a bit if you get this out turn 2 on the play.

- 2x Cancel: Again 3 mana or less counters are always going to have a home in blue decks.

- 1x Keep Watch: Situational card draw applicable to situations that happen all, the, time.

- 2x Repulse: Unsummon + cantrip for 2 mana extra. Still a fine deal.

- 2x Archaeomancer: I certainly don't find anything primitive about a Call to Mind with a 1/2 body.

- 2x Rite of Replication: A clone to help you stabilize early and a flat out game-winner late. Remember, if you put this under Panoptic Mirror you only have to pay the kicker cost of (5) to get your 5 dudes. 2, not 3 of these, sounds about rite.

- 4x Talrand's Invocation: When you're not pulling off crazy Panoptic Mirror shenanigans or making over nine thou...errr, 5 copies of things, this is the card that's going to win the game for you. Run all four.

- 1x Talrand, Sky Summoner: If you get to create even one 2/2 with this you've gotten great value. However, it's not the end of the world if you run this out there on turn 4 and it just eats a removal spell. But if you have, for whatever reason, another Sleight of Hand on hand/in hand/handy, waiting until turn 5 to drop him is fine.

- 1x Bribery: Steal your opponent's best creature that's not in his graveyard or hand. Questions? Just don't be dumb and bounce a creature you steal, unless something crazy is going down like it's getting Rite'd for 9, or Followed Footsteps or something.

- 1x Followed Footsteps: Enchanting your opponent's creature is usually the best play with this, but you don't always have to follow the crowd's footsteps. Sometimes your own Archaeomancer is a perfectly fine target.

- 1x Future Sight: Card advantage machine (though the 2nd copy is unnecessary in my sight). If you're running this out after turn 5, don't play a land in your hand first before you cast this okay? There may be one sitting on the top of your deck. If you're planning on casting a spell off the top of your deck on your own turn, again, don't play a land from your hand, just in case.

- 1x Gravitational Shift: Sometimes you get to hose a ground force with this, and sometimes you just steal a game out of nowhere with your air force. Obviously, you want to know what cards your opponent potentially has access to before you just casually throw this out there.

- 1x Panoptic Mirror: For the new folks. You play this. Then, at the beginning of your next turn, PAUSE THE GAME, and then use this thing's ability to start the madness right then, well, you know, if it's prudent to do so. Even a Sleight of Hand on this is nuts. Also, in case you've Foucaulten, you can imprint more than one spell on this thing...just be careful, every deck with the exception of Liliana has a potential answer to this card.

- 1x Sphinx of Lost Truths: There are a lot of people out there who sphinx this guy is some kind of finisher. He's really not. He loots 3 cards for you for 5 mana, and he's a Concentrate with a 3/5 flying body for 7. You should be handling the truth.

- 1x Time Warp: Your favorite Mirror target. Don't sit on this forever waiting for said Mirror to show up though. It's not the end of the world if you have to warp this card in to an Explore from time to time.

THE WHY NOTS:

- Curiosity: I think there's enough card draw in this deck to not open yourself up to a 2 for 1. The earliest you can hit with this anyways is on turn 3, with a Mage or Hatchling, and do you really think your dude is getting in most of the time at that point? On the play against some of the control decks, sure. Does that scream consistency to you?

- Distortion Strike: What are you trying to do, cast this on something with Curiosity on it? (what up 2.5 for 1 city!) A 2 or 3 power guy? A Goliath Sphinx .335837% of the time? Really? Only Talrand, Sky Summoner cares about this card, and not for the damage.

- Hydrosurge: There's been a surge of bad puns in this guide lately.

- Favorable Winds: You can steal some Winds with this if you go the aggro-airforce route with the deck. Personally, I feel that is     the inferior version of Crosswinds.

- Ring of Evos Isle: How is this the best Ring in the game again? What in your deck is so important that you have to give Hexproof to (for 2!!!) outside of Talrand himself? ... ??? ...

- Twincast: It's a fine card, just a tad costly to use on yourself, and a lot of the time your opponent doesn't play anything worth copying.

- Arm with Aether: Ummm, block your low P/T dudes or kill them in response? Thanks?

- Call to Mind: You know what the dude in the card is telling himself? "I wouldn't mind paying 1 more mana for a 1/2 body."

- Skywinder Drake: See: Favorable Winds

- Dehydration: You know, my cousins Kraken Hatchling and Fog Bank know a guy who knows a guy who knows a guy that just does the most quality of work. *skeptical look*

- Spiketail Drake: I don't mind paying 2 mana for a flying Force Spike, I DO mind paying 5 mana for a flying Mana Leak though.

- Tidings: 4 cards is great, but you're usually ripping through your deck/recurring effects enough that this isn't really needed.

- Time Reversal: Oh boy oh boy oh boy. I hope I can draw this so I can really get all those Jace turbo-mill builds really good!

- Cerulean Sphinx: This card would be a lot better if it read: If Cerulean Sphinx is in your opening hand, reveal it, shuffle it into your sideboard, and go get a better card. Yes, even a Kraken Hatchling fits the bill.

- Flow of Ideas: 6+ cards is even better tidings, but again, the idea here is you don't really need this.

- Recurring Insight: Not the most consistent of cards. For a card and 6 mana sometimes you get a double Divination and sometimes you go big and hit a double Tidings. Still better ways to draw cards with this deck though.

- Blatant Thievery: A 7 mana Mind Control 98% of the time? Yeah, I heard the one about stealing a Debtor's Knell. Cool story bro.

- Cast Through Time: So this or Panoptic Mirror? Guess which one is cheaper, and better?

- Day of Dragons: You know the turn you cast this all your shiny new dragons are summoning sick, right? I'd rather swipe a game out of nowhere with the admittedly less-offensively (and again, CHEAPER) but more defensively-impressive Gravitational Shift.

- Goliath Sphinx: Whether your bowl has 2 scoops of vanilla ice cream in it, or 10, it doesn't change the fact that it's still vanilla.

- Sphinx-Bone Wand: If you sphinx this card actually won you more than 1% of the games in which it was actually cast, you're wrong. In all likelihood your opponent was already boned. Just in case you were wandering.

- Time Stretch: It's not a stretch to say that this is fully win-more is it? Again, for 10 mana I want a guaranteed win, not a sometimes double Explore

DREAM PUPPETS:

Show
CURVE:

0 (0): None

1 (8): 2x Hedron Crab, 4x Jace's Phantasm, 2x Unsummon

2 (6): 2x Counterspell, 2x Into the Roil, 2x Mind Sculpt

3 (9): 2x Aether Adept, 3x Crippling Chill, 1x Dream Fracture, 1x Stroke of Genius, 2x Sword of Body and Mind

4 (6): 2x Clone, 3x Dreamborn Muse, 1x Icy Manipulator

5 (4): 1x Archive Trap (though sometimes it's a 0), 2x Body Double, 1x Mind Control

6+ (2): 2x Chancellor of the Spires

17 creatures, 18 other spells, 25x Island  (48.6%/51.4%)

THE WHYS:

- 2x Hedron Crab: (Basically) free milling. It can turn on Jace's Phantasm and Body Double by itself fairly quickly. It can carry a sword. It costs one. This Hedron is totally solid, not just geometrically. Run both.

- 4x Jace's Phantasm: You're actually going to win with damage more than milling with this build, and this is the guy that's going to do it. Run all 4 and picture them in some kind of bizarro Ghostbusters outfits.

- 2x Unsummon: You gotta have some time to set things up, right?

- 2x Counterspell: Quite possibly the best 2 mana counter ever printed? Run both.

- 2x Into the Roil: Remember, this hits non-land permanents as well. Bounce their sword kill their guy? Seems fine. You don't always have to kick it, but you're usually better off waiting to do so.

- 2x Mind Sculpt: There's no need to run all of these as this isn't a dedicated mill deck, but it can help turn on a Phantasm by turn 2. Head massages turn me on too.

- 2x Aether Adept: Sorcery speed Unsummon with a 2/2 body attached. If you're adept at deck building, you're probably running both like me.

- 3x Crippling Chill: It's your sorta/kinda Unsummon/Adept that cantrips. Cast this on your opponent's turn on a creature not affected by summoning sickness and cost that creature 2 more attack steps. You can cast this on your own turn as well if you're desperate to hit a land drop, or if you want to force in some damage or something, but it's not something I would normally recommend.

- 1x Dream Fracture: Hey, it's another counter, even though both you and your opponent are cantripping. Worth the drawback as it's slim pickings here.

- 1x Stroke of Genius: Who needs those Mines and Fonts? I want to be the only one drawing cards. Also: Instant. Speed.

- 2x Sword of Body and Mind: Ahhh, turn your utility guys into absolute animals, that make other animals. One hit is usually devastating as it activates all your Phantasms from that point forward unless you're playing some weirdo running Elixir of Immortality or Time Reversal.

- 2x Clone: If you can't beat them, join them.

- 3x Dreamborn Muse: If you're gonna win through mill, aside from repeated sword hits, this is gonna be the card you muse. Don't go dropping multiples of this if your opponent is only sitting on 2 cards while you've got a grip of 5. Milling yourself out is just embarrassing.

- 1x Icy Manipulator: One is fine. Nice for keeping a dude locked down every turn (for 1 mana) or stunting an opponent's development by keeping a mana tapped down on "upkeep" (though this game really doesn't have that phase). It's even fine for tapping down an opponent's Mine or Font so they don't get to draw extra cards.

- 1x Archive Trap: Well, it's either this or Traumatize. The latter will usually hit for more cards, but the former is instant speed and is sometimes free. Trap is really the only "combat trick" we have in the deck as well. Also: Admiral Ackbar > YuGiOh

- 2x Body Double: We're not a dedicated mill deck, but we certainly don't mind it when we can sometimes pull out our opponent's bombs with this for 5 mana, or even something of ours in a pinch.

- 1x Mind Control: 1 is fine, as sometimes you just need to straight up TAKE something that's already hit the battlefield. Don't lose control of your mind and strap a sword on a creature you take though.

- 2x Chancellor of the Spires: Not a finisher per se, but the difference between this and say, something like Goliath Sphinx is that his ETB ability is pretty sweet *most* of the time. Don't be a nerd and try to cast an opponent's Mutilate though, you want to aspires for something more. You also get to live the dream sometimes swinging with a 5/5 flyer on turn 2.

THE WHY NOTS:

- Grindstone: Even disregarding the fact that all these decks are STACKED with land, do you really want to pay a 3 mana activation cost to maybe hit 4 or 6? Unless your deck has Painter's Servant in it, I can't see why you'd ever run this.

- Prosperity: I guess it's fine in a turbo-mill deck with Jace's Erasure and Dreamborn Muse and the like, mega-buffing a Sturmgeist, or decking your opponent. But outside of that, I just never want my opponents to draw extra cards, and I'm not completely dedicated to A MILLI A MILLI here.

- Thought Scour: Sure the cantrip is fine, but where does wasting a slot in your deck to mill for 2 really get you? Thoughts?

- Tome Scour: 10 is the magic number in this deck, and Mind Sculpt does it better. 3 (Hedron Crab) + 7 > 3 + 5

- Visions of Beyond: The Mariah Carey invitational cantrip. A 1 mana cantrip is usually all it ever is.

- Grindclock: How is this even good in TURBO-mill builds? You know it has "grind" in it's name, right?

- Howling Mine: Like hundreds have echoed before me, the best thing you can be doing in a game of Magic besides winning the game, is drawing extra cards. I don't want my opponent to draw extra cards, synergies be damned.

- Jace's Erasure: Since I don't like my opponent's to draw cards with Mines and Fonts (and Forced Fruition), and the only card draw we really have is cantripping off Crippling Chill and Into the Roil and casting Stroke of Genius. I'm not gonna lie, I like me some Erasure from time to time, just not Jace's version.

- Sapphire Medallion: You're ramping into a turn 3 Clone for what exactly? Vampire Nighthawk is nice I guess. Ramping into a Chancellor? Nice, but not really essential in most matches.

- Sands of Delirium: Nice alternate win condition I guess, if nothing's going on. When there's stuff to DEAL WITH, what is this doing exactly? If you're turbo-mill, don't your other cards do more for less?

- :Cephalid Broker: I mean, I guess a Merfolk Looter with a dash of PCP is fine, I just think there are more exciting deals to be brokered for 4 mana.

- :Font of Mythos: See: Howling Mine

- Sleep: So you cost your opponent an attack step for one turn. Maybe you even had the fortune of casting this AND leaving counter magic up. Now what?

- Vedalken Entrancer: Like their brethren in the Blue Man Group, it takes about an hour and a half for their performance to be over.

- Wheel and Deal: Look at this shady guy trying to sell me some bootleg Wheel of Fortune.

- Scalpelexis: Yeah, sometimes you get lucky and exile 20+ cards and your opponent becomes scalpoplectic with rage, most others he just not-quite Tome Scours your opponent, but, with the exiling, you lose utility with Phantasm, Chancellor, and Body Double.

- Sturmgeist: Drawing a card when you hit is nice, but since we're not putting those Mines and Fonts here, a lot of the time all you're really getting is a little bit more expensive Thieving Magpie, with a little bit more power. Sturm and hot Drang that's exciting! (not really)

- Telemin Performance: Yes, it technically mills too, but sometimes you hit the jackpot and sometimes you just guaranteed your child 100K in student loan debt. Too risky.

- Traumatize: It's either this or Archive Trap I suppose...and I like instant speed mill 13 (sometimes for free...and sometimes a wacky combat trick) more than the volume of cards you'd hit with this in a non turbo mill build.

- Forced Fruition: 6 mana is a lot to let your opponent get a "free" Griselbrand-effect every time they cast a spell. Sometimes all they need is to find that one answer after drawing 7...leave this to the turbo-millers.

- Isleback Spawn: This dude is pissed that a Crab gets to hold a Sword and he doesn't.



EXALTED DARKNESS:
Show


CURVE:

0 (4): 4x Evolving Wilds

1 (0): None

2 (13) : 2x Child of Night, 1x Demonic Tutor, 3x Doom Blade, 3x Knight of Glory, 2x Knight of Infamy, 2x Pacifism

3 (10): 2x Guardians of Akrasa, 1x Mortify, 1x Pillory of the Sleepless, 1x Royal Assassin, 3x Unmake, 2x Vindicate

4 (5): 1x No Mercy, 2x Silent Arbiter, 1x Sublime Archangel, 1x Worship

5 (5): 1x Battlegrace Angel, 2x Deathbringer Liege, 2x Divinity of Pride

6+ (3): 1x Nefarox, Overlord of Grixis, 1x Angel of Despair, 1x Debtors' Knell

20 creatures, 16 other spells, 12x Swamp, 8x Plains, 4x Evolving Wilds  (50.0%/50.0%)

THE WHYS:

- 4x Evolving Wilds: Kind of essential in a two-color deck? Helps thin your deck out too. With Darklit Gargoyle out of the picture you don't really have to adhere to the "you only need 2 Plains" strategy anymore.

- 2x Child of Night: Well, if you take the time to analyze the build, child, you'll see we're abandoning the whole weenie/aggro rush concept here. We're looking to stall and drop bombs...sorta like a poor man's Obedient Dead or Dark Heavens. Gaining some life helps that, especially in a sea of Goblins. We've got a few Exalted chaps to help it out too from time to time.

- 1x Demonic Tutor: What exactly is there to say about this that hasn't already been said? For 2 mana you grab ANY card in your deck. Banned in Legacy.

- 3x Doom Blade: Well, we are trying to be a control deck here, so you can never have too much instant speed removal. Granted, this is pretty miserable in the mirror and against Liliana.

- 3x Knight of Glory: A 2/1 Exalted for 2 is a glorious value. Plus, being pro-anything in the Duels environment can sometimes just lead to auto-wins.

- 2x Knight of Infamy: See the infamous statement above.

- 2x Pacifism: Hey, it's more sorta-removal. This doesn't actually pacify any creatures with activated or triggered abilities though, so don't go thinking this is gonna solve your Obsidian Fireheart problem or something.

- 2x Guardians of Akrasa: Well, okay, admittedly I'm not akrazy about this card, but what other defensive/stall options do we have? Child of Night into this isn't the worst thing in the world against any sort of weenie rush.

- 1x Mortify: Instant speed creature and enchantment removal. Need I say mort?

- 1x Pillory of the Sleepless: Pacifism with a clock attached. Now is this pillory designed for insomniacs, or does it make you one? I'm curious.

- 1x Royal Assassin: If you ever get to untap with this, aside from a bum rush, you're probably never getting attacked again until it's removed. Remember, aside from Vigilance dudes, an opponent has to tap their dude to attack, at which point you let this evil mime do his thing.

- 3x Unmake: Instant speed exiling, when you're having trouble with dudes with enters the graveyard abilities, or graveyard recursion. Bye bye Phoenix.

- 2x Vindicate: Hit any permanent. Including lands. Don't get greedy though.

- 1x No Mercy: Not an auto-win, but if you get this down while still above, say, 12 life, it's going to be awfully hard to lose.

- 2x Silent Arbiter: You could argue that this guy brings things to a screeching halt faster than a Royal Assassin or a No Mercy. Just don't go arbitrarily dropping him when you're ahead on board.

- 1x Sublime Archangel: Sort of an oddity here, but her ability is just too good, and even just a 4/3 flyer for 4 is ahead of the curve. Unknown at this time whether or not she practices Santeria.

- 1x Worship: Shrug. We have 20 creatures. A lot of them big. Keep on stalling until you can put your opponent away.

- 1x Battlegrace Angel: Your grace is here mostly for the lifegain.

- 2x Deathbringer Liege: With 1 of these out, you have 12 other spells with the added text "when you cast this spell, destroy target creature". The buffs are nice too when you want to swing with more than one dude.

- 2x Divinity of Pride: Well, you've survived everything your opponent has thrown at you, now it's time to get that life total back up there. Remember, this thing IS Obama-esque, so Deathbringer Liege makes him a 6/6.

- 1x Nefarox, Overlord of Grixis: Like all the other Legends in the game, if you ever get to untap with this (though, like Odric, he has to actually make it to the attack step), mayhem ensues. You really want me to say it, don't you? Okay. He rox.

- 1x Angel of Despair: Vindicate for 7, with a 5/5 Flyer attached. Dees pair of things seem great.

- 1x Debtors' Knell: Knell before your king. It's a harder to remove Reya Dawnbringer for anyone's graveyard. It probably won't win you any games against  turbo-Jace, but against the other decks you've pretty much got things locked up when you untap with this.

THE WHY NOTS:

- Cathedral of War: I tried it, and while the bonus is nice, it really jacks up your mana when you're trying to cast your Unmakes, Deathbringer Lieges, and Divinity of Prides on time. Don't say I didn't war you.

- Sigil of Distinction: Okay, now comes the part where I type "this isn't an aggro deck" 5000 times. It's a fine card if you want to go that route. Sure it can make one of your dudes an impenetrable wall for control purposes,

- Akrasan Squire: 1/1? Sounds control-ish.

- Duty-Bound Dead: 0/2s with a 4 mana regeneration clause? Sounds control-ish.

- Seize the Initiative: A silly combat trick? Sounds control-ish. I'm sure many people have had gleeful seizures when running this in their aggro builds, but I wouldn't even run this in one of those.

- Tormented Soul: 1/1 can't blocks? Sounds control-ish.

- Aven Squire: 1/1 FLYER? Now we're getting somewhere. Okay, we're really not.

- Darklit Gargoyle: An absolute all-star (and the main reason you only want to fetch swamps with your Evolving Wilds once you hit 2 Plains), but this dude isn't playing any defense. Sorry.

- Mark of Asylum: No, I'm not going to dedicate a slot just on the off-chance that I completely hose my worst matchup, Born of Flame. 10% of the time your opponent is going "Gah, I can't believe this mark is running this card.", and the other 90% your opponent is going "This card? This person belongs in an asylum.".

- Mighty Leap: At least this combat trick is marginally better than Seizure up there. Though there's no way I'm going to take a leap of faith and believe anyone who tells me this still isn't terrible.

- Ring of Xathrid: By the time you have this on one of your Knights, it'll be turn 4, and then you have to leave up 2 mana every turn? And this doesn't even buff up the White one? For control purposes, I would only put it above the Cloak as far as uselessness goes.

- Spirit Mantle: We're really not trying to protect our dudes from creatures. We're trying to kill all of theirs. Again, sure it can make one of your dudes into an impenetrable wall, but your also entering the outskirts of 2 for 1 city here.

- Daggerclaw Imp: Can't block? Can't help you.

- Servant of Nefarox: If you're gonna be vanilla, can you at least have a decent toughness?

- Sword of Vengeance: See: Sigil of Distinction. (though this is obviously better)

- Whispersilk Cloak: Again, we're not trying as much to keep our guys alive than we are to kill all of theirs. Shroud IS good most of the time. BUT, then there's the whole getting your guy killed in response to equipping blow out. This card is very high risk-high reward. I personally don't like playing with it, but I sure hate playing AGAINST it.

- Angelic Benediction: I don't see the point in tapping down something in this deck unless you're getting in for lethal. It may win you a game or 2 in a race, but for consistency purposes, 4 mana do-nothing (unless you're the beatdown) enchantments just don't cut it.

- Duskmantle Prowler: I don't see how a 2/2 haste for 4 (exalted) is any better than 2/1s for 2 (pro-black or white) without haste (exalted).

GOBLIN GANGLAND:
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CURVE:

0 (0): None

1 (12): 2x Goblin Arsonist, 2x Goblin Bushwhacker (though 99% of the time this isn't being cast for 1), 1x Goblin Fireslinger, 2x Goblin Grenade, 2x Goblin Guide, 1x Goblin War Strike, 2x Shock

2 (10): 2x Ember Hauler, 2x Goblin Piledriver, 1x Goblin Wardriver, 3x Krenko's Command, 2x Warren Instigator

3 (7): 3x Gempalm Incinerator (though again, 99% of the time this is a 2 mana creature removal spell), 3x Goblin Chieftain, 1x Goblin Warchief

4 (4): 1x Clickslither, 2x Goblin Ringleader, 1x Krenko, Mob Boss

5 (3): 2x Siege-Gang Commander, 1x Voracious Dragon

6+ (0): None

28 creatures (though Gempalm Incinerator is more of a removal spell), 8 other spells (again, Krenko's Command is really a creature), 24x Mountain (77.8%/22.2%)

THE WHYS:

- 2x Goblin Arsonist: It's a 1 drop goblin with a nice little dying ability that combos well with Goblin Grenade and Clickslither, and the like. It's always going to do at LEAST 1 damage if you're not shooting down x/1 and x/2 creatures with it. Run both.

- 2x Goblin Bushwhacker: If you play this for only 1, you better be doing something with Grenades or Slithers or something. It's also usually pretty whack to just run this out there on turn 2 if you have a different turn 2 play. Even if you don't, look at your hand and ask yourself if he'd be better off saving. That being said, run both nerds.

- 1x Goblin Fireslinger: Speaking of 1 drops that always do at least 1 damage...well, always isn't the case here. But 98% of the time, yup, and a slightly less percentage than that, even more.

- 2x Goblin Grenade: When one of your goblins has outlived his usefulness, don't fire him, give him the Lava Axe. Use on creatures only in periods of extreme Duress, like sacrificing Arsonist to hit an x/1 and dome your opponent for 5. Run both.

- 2x Goblin Guide: Ummm, only one of the best 1 drops ever printed? This deck is obviously Vin Diesel and Paul Walker-approved, so don't sweat the drawback too much. Run both.

- 1x Goblin War Strike: Board stalls getting your workforce down? Go on strike.

- 2x Shock: Just another way to squeak some damage in or clear some x/2s out of the way of your x/2s. Usually used for the latter, but sometimes this is what you need to end games too. Run both.

- 2x Ember Hauler: Think hard before you use him to nuke a creature or just run him out there on turn 2 against a deck with high volumes of removal. If i have a different turn 2 play that's not Bushwhacker, I usually wait to run this go out there also. Run both.

-2x Goblin Piledriver: Aside from getting manipulated on by an Icy Hot Stunta, there's not much blue decks can do once he hits the table. Granted, he's only swinging for 1 without backup, but there's usually always backup. Even against the non-blue decks he's good at diverting blockers away from your Wardrivers, Lords, and Instigators when they're all swinging together. Isn't this more of a sleeper hold though?

- 1x Goblin Wardriver: Subtype: Goblin Warrior, Battle Cries other goblins. Why yes, I believe I'll drive this one off the lot.

- 3x Krenko's Command: It's not Raise the Alarm, but it'll do. Always a fine turn 2 play. Run 'em all. This, I command.

- 2x Warren Instigator: Think juuuuuust a bit before you snap keep any opening hand with one of these. They're not going to put Dragons and Commands into play. Most of the time though, this is a scary thing for your opponent to see on turn 2. You also don't ALWAYS have to put a goblin down with his ability (like, say, a Bushwhacker). Feel free to psyche your opponent out sometimes, or play around sweepers. Or drop in a Lord to buff everyone after First Strike damage. Run both.

- 3x Gempalm Incinerator: Nothing much to be said here other than, if you're casting this as a creature you'd better be winning that turn. If you're behind, and able to cast it, you can always just cycle this without actually killing anything, in a pinch. Run 'em all.

- 3x Goblin Chieftain: They're lords. +1/+1 to others goblins plus Haste. Now that there's 3, this into Krenko is way more common now, and mostly unbeatable. Run. Them. All.

- 1x Goblin Warchief: You get the above's Haste, but you trade the buff for lowering the casting cost of Goblins by (1). That's still good since this into Siege-Gang Commander is a beating.

- 1x Clickslither: The keyword here is Trample, otherwise I wouldn't even bother. Just be careful not to get blown out by removal after you've munched on some goblins.

- 2x Goblin Ringleader: There are 26 things this can potentially hit in the deck when you drop 1 (including the other). I'm not going to get into percentages here, I already slogged through one Statistics course, but doesn't that seem good to you, even without the 2/2 body and Haste? Run both.

- 1x Krenko, Mob Boss: If they don't have spot removal for him they better have mass removal or you ARE going to win (usually sooner, sometimes later).

- 2x Siege-Gang Commander: 5 power for 5 mana spread out over 4 Goblin bodies. Sometimes his hit for 2 ability is even relevant. Oddfuturesiegegangrunthemall.

- 1x Voracious Dragon: 9 times out of 10, you don't really need him for the body, you really only want him for the ability. Believe it or not, sometimes games just Drag On and this guy shows up and domes a dude for the full 20.

THE WHY NOTS:

- Goblin Balloon Brigade: I might actually consider this if the card simply had flying. I don't like paying mana for the "privilege" though. It just feels like I'm getting extorted by some creepy carny.

- Raging Goblin: Look people, this is NOT a Goblin Guide prototype. 2 a turn starting on turn ONE is a much much much bigger deal than 1 a turn. Why do you think Goblin Guide has a drawback? This dude can't even rumble with a Hedron Crab without calling in his homies esse'. "But you have Krenko's Command in your deck!". Yes I do. I'm paying a card and 1 more mana for TWO (sans haste) of his bodies. One whole card for just a 1/1 with haste? Not worth it.

- Smelt: There's probably at least one dude out there with a great Goblins vs. Panoptic Mirror story that ends with "He who Smelt it, dealt with it.". Is that kind of humor really worth a slot though?

- Goblin Piker: I'll have a vanilla answer for you in 2, 1, .....

- Ring of Valkas: What exactly am I paying 1 mana to give haste to? So you say you grant haste, yet slow down my deck at the same time. Hmmm. A Krenko on turn 5? How about I just cast Krenko on turn 4, because if they have the removal for him, this ring doesn't matter (and if they don't, waiting for a ring equip technically gives them 1 more turn to topdeck one). The +1/+1 every turn is not very exciting either.

- Arms Dealer: You don't need to get all up in arms about your dismissal. Your ability isn't exactly essential (read: doesn't say "player") and there are better options on the curve now. Deal.

- Blisterstick Shaman: Again, better options at the 3 and less spot. Certainly not a card I would necessarily be ashamaned to see somebody running though.

- Goblin Artillery: Homemade crap like this is the reason arms dealers exist. The goblin equivalent of the kid who blew his eyebrows off trying to make an M-80.

- Goblin Assault This card certainly looks good on the surface, but it is deceptively bad. Does getting a Raging Goblin every turn outweigh the risk of having to potentially suicide your Chiefs and Wardriver every turn, or forcing you to blow your Hauler early? No.

- Goblin Offensive: I'll tell you what's offensive: at 4 mana this is an un-kicked Goblin Bushwhacker, at 5 it's a Krenko's Command, at 6 mana and above it's irrelevant because you've either already won or your opponent has stabilized and this does nothing but elicit a few chuckles.

- Goblin Roughrider: I'll let my dog handle this one. "Ruff."

- Lavafume Invoker: You might as well have that "8" fall over and read "infinity".

- Rummaging Goblin: Good in theory but terrible in practice. Unless I luck out into a Krenko, Mob Boss, Siege-Gang Commander, or Voracious Dragon (and the mana to cast them), farting around looting usually means I'm not ahead on board, pushing as much damage in as possible.

- Squee, Goblin Nabob: We had a great run, but this deck is much, much faster now with the promo unlocks, and his synergy is no longer needed. Besides, a goblin of "great wealth and prominence" shouldn't be out on the battlefield getting dirty anyways.

- Thunder-Thrash Elder: I have nothing but respect for my elders for all the times they helped out when I needed to go big, but it's a faster world now, and they're free to go play bingo or shuffleboard or whatever a Viashino does.

- Battle-Rattle Shaman: "It's a thuggish ruggish noooooo..."

- Goblin Fire Fiend: It's a 1/1. For 4. Look at that bottle of MD 20/20 in his hand, this guy is the homeless man of firebreathers.

- Goblin Goon: I could live with the drawback if he had haste or trample or something, but he doesn't, so get lost Bruce Banner.

- Lowland Oaf: You know, if you didn't have to tap him, he wouldn't be that Giant of a letdown. But you do, and he's patiently waiting for all your best LOLand Oaf jokes.

- Reckless One: Would it be reckless to say that this is simply outclassed by the other 4 drops?

- Relentless Assault: One, cost. Two, more often than not a board position where these would be useful represents a board position where you're already winning.

- Mindmoil: Yeah, you haven't lived until you've discarded 4 goblins and drawn 4 lands.

- Rage Reflection: See: Relentless Assault

- Chancellor of the Forge: Hello, just showing up here to inform you that my owner has taken a mulligan to 6 (or less) but I gave him this great Raging Goblin in the deal.

- Goblin Dynamo: You really want me to pay 7 mana for these abilities on a 4/4 body? How about you give me these same abilities, for 3 mana, and I'll take it on a 1/1 body. What? You've got kids to feed? I'll take my business elsewhere then.

OBEDIENT DEAD:
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CURVE:

0 (0): None

1 (5): 2x Fume Spitter, 2x Innocent Blood, 1x Mire's Toll

2 (6): 2x Jet Medallion, 2x Nantuko Shade, 2x Sign in Blood

3 (9): 1x Infest, 2x Liliana's Specter, 4x Murder, 1x Underworld Dreams, 1x Vampire Nighthawk

4 (8): 1x Diabolic Tutor, 1x Icy Manipulator, 2x Liliana's Shade, 1x Mutilate, 1x Nekrataal, 1x Phyrexian Obliterator, 1x Tendrils of Corruption

5 (2): 2x Rise from the Grave

6+ (5): 1x Corrupt, 1x Massacre Wurm, 1x Grave Titan, 1x Rune-Scarred Demon, 1x Griselbrand

15 creatures, 20 other spells (Rise from the Grave is basically a creature though), 25x Swamp  (42.9%/57.1%)

THE WHYS:

- 2x Fume Spitter: Dudes, it's a one drop that puts a PERMANENT -1/-1 counter on a creature, so you can save your actual removal spells for something better. Even acts as a pseudo-fog/murder against the rush decks. Block one thing, sac it, kill another. He's fine fodder for a top-decked Innocent Blood. He plays nice with things like Nekrataal's First Strike and Infest. I secretly fume inside whenever I hear people bad mouth this little guy.

- 2x Innocent Blood: One mana removal spells seems great, right? Granted, you have to sac one of your dudes too, so you want to pop this early, even it's to drop a lowly 2/1 or something. Still fine later on though since you can just drop a Specter, Spitter, or Nekrataal after you've got their initial use out of them.

- 1x Mire's Toll: Now in most situations, this is only getting played before turn 3 when you're trying to go off on a Rise from the Grave on your own creature. Still though, waiting to see your opponent's entire hand of 4 or 5 is invaluable. Even though you're only pitching one card, you now have information about your opponent's hand, and how he can interact with you in the future. You know what the say about half-battles and knowing, right?

- 2x Jet Medallion: I am all for dropping bombs 1 to 2 turns earlier, especially when all our bombs actually DO something upon entering the battlefield.

- 2x Nantuko Shade: It's a 2 mana shade. Just be wary of going all in when your opponent has mana out (and access to instant speed removal/bounce).

- 2x Sign in Blood: Drawing cards is about the best thing you can do in magic aside from flat out winning the game. On the draw, you can even get tricky and cast this turn 2 (with no turn 1 play) to force yourself to discard a bomb to Rise later. Also, of course, can be used as a poor man's Lava Axe when you have an Underworld Dreams in play.

- 1x Infest: Hey, even a weak sweeper is a sweeper...not to mention that most of your dudes can live through this (even the shades, if you wait until the 5 mana mark).

- 2x Liliana's Specter: I don't understand all these "why run this when this isn't a discard-themed deck" gripes. It's not like this is Mind Rot. You're still getting a 2/1 Flyer out of the deal. Sure, you're not fist-pumping when your opponent discards a land or a Doom Blade or something, but when he discards something else? Pure upside.

- 4x Murder: For one mana more, you have none of the restrictions of Doom Blade or Go for the Throat. Seems like a killer deal.

- 1x Underworld Dreams: I wouldn't run both, but I'm usually never unhappy to see this, as a clock is a clock. One of your best defenses against Mine/Font Jace as well.

- 1x Vampire Nighthawk: "There's only one of him!" So. What. When a card is good, you just run it. You get a 2/3 with THREE keywords: Flying, Deathtouch, Lifelink. What is there to discuss here?

- 1x Diabolic Tutor: Effectively copy number 2 of any bomb in your deck, though, honestly, most of the time, I use this to grab an Obliterator on turn 4.

- 1x Icy Manipulator: The times where we actually NEED this to tap down a creature are going to be few and far between. But it's nice to have, and we mostly use it to shut off an opponent's land for a turn, which in the mirror, is actually pretty important. Also shuts off Howling Mines if needed, and is another out to Knight of Glory.

- 2x Liliana's Shade: More of a filter than a ramper, and a fine win condition on it's own. However, with Medallions in the build, I find running the full 4 a bit overkill. Always gotta be mindful of the curve.

- 1x Mutilate: When is this not actually Damnation? .03% of the time?

- 1x Nekrataal: Doom Blade on a 2/1 First Striking body for 4. I don't think anyone believes 2 mana is too much for a Doom Blade, and 2 mana for a 2/1 First Striker seems good as well, sooooooo......value.

- 1x Phyrexian Obliterator: Well, seeing as how we're running nothing but Swamps, why would you not run this? Goblins, Garruk, and Chandra have no real way of dealing with this without sacrificing permanents. A 4 turn clock on it's own, and it even has Trample to boot once your opponent has to bite the bullet and start chump blocking. My number one tutor target in the aforementioned matchups.

- 1x Tendrils of Corruption: Corrupt for creatures only. Now why champion this over something like Exsanguinate? Well, it's simple. Affecting the board > Not affecting the board.

- 2x Rise from the Grave: Put. Directly. In. To. Play. Any questions?

- 1x Corrupt: Mostly used to close out games, but unlike Exsanguinate, this can hit a creature in a pinch as well. Hey, having access to that is valuable every now and again.

- 1x Grave Titan: 10 power and toughness over 3 bodies for 6 mana. If you ever get to actually swing with this, well, things are looking pretty grave for your opponent.

- 1x Massacre Wurm: For the times you REALLY need a Reiver Demon, doesn't this provide the same solution 90% of the time, at a lower cost (and can be cheated into play with Rise)? Not uncommon to "burn out" an opponent with it's ability as well.

- 1x Rune-Scarred Demon: Demonic/Diabolic Tutor with a 6/6 Flyer attached. You're not going to lose too many games  where you resolve this, unless you have problems and grab a land or something.

- 1x Griselbrand: Whether you resolve this on turn 4 or turn 8, drawing 7 cards usually locks up the game.

THE WHY NOTS:

- Crippling Blight: Now what do we get when we lose the 1/1 body of Fume Spitter? Creature can't block. Does that seem good in this style of deck? Sure, it would be fine if you ran this as an aggro deck. But why are you running this as an aggro deck?

- Blister Beetle: Now if it gave a permanent counter, I would give him a chance. But it doesn't, so this can beet it. At least you can cast a Fume Spitter on an empty board.

- Exsanguinate: Sure, this can technically be a "finisher", but do you really want to load your deck with things that don't affect the board? At least Corrupt can hit a creature in a pinch. Worst case, with two Jet Medallions out, Corrupt and Exsanguinate 4 mana does 4 damage to your opponent. No Medallions? Corrupt does 6 damage for 6 mana. Exsanguinate still only does 4 for 6 mana. Blood work is expensive these days.

- Dread Warlock: Hi, I'm the 3 mana black Spectral Rider. Huh? Control deck? What's that. Translation: why are you in such a hurry to do damage with this deck? You sitting on a fat stack of Exsanguinates or something?

- Last Kiss: It's fine, and I wouldn't fault you for running this, but we had to kiss something goodbye to make room for all the sweet promos.

- Warpath Ghoul: It's a vanilla 3/2. If you want to go down that crappy aggro path, fine. Don't say I didn't war you though.

- Befoul: You know, you CAN get to a point where your deck has too many removal spells. 4 mana sorceries are gonna be the first to go, as hitting a land is rarely relevant.

- Bloodhunter Bat: If you're hunting for a mono-black aggro build, I suppose you could do worse. But then again, how often do "4 mana 2/2s that Shock your opponent" and "aggro" go hand in hand?

- Halo Hunter Make room for Dread! For one more mana, you get the same 6 power (mostly unblockable) with the twice the toughness, and a No Mercy ability. Easy call.

- Incremental Blight: There NEEDS to be at least 3 creatures on the board for this to even be cast. Sometimes, you have to target 1 or 2 of your own. That seems cool. Yeah blight. At least Infest and Mutilate are cheaper, and can be cast WHENEVER YOU HAVE THE MANA TO.
 
- Nested Ghoul: You're a 4/2 that makes a 2/2 if you get damaged/killed by damage? For 5 mana you're slightly better than a Fire Elemental? Okay, is that all you're trying to tell me? Allright, well, we have some other candidates we're interviewing today, but we have your resume on file. Good day.

- Nightwing Shade: Nantuko is fine. Giving him flying and an extra point of (mostly irrelevant) toughness for 3 extra mana is not fine.

- Veilborn Ghoul: It's a bootleg Bloodghast. When is bootleg ever used in a positive connotation?

- Dread: No Mercy on a 6/6 (mostly) unblockable body is fine. Here are the real questions we need to ask though. Is this better than our other 6+ drops. I say no. Even though it's "only" 1 card, is this worth warping your mana curve over? Again, I say no. Can't be cheated into play, and the No Mercy "ability" isn't really a true ETB effect, so if they just remove this on the turn you cast it, you've gotten nothing (other than the ability to shuffle this back in your deck). Sorry man, we got standards here.

- Hellcarver Demon: With no library manipulation present in this deck, why would you ever want to roll the dice on a one-sided Worldfire (sans damage)? Seriously, even those folks at Gambler's Anonymous are raising an eyebrow at you.

- Nightmare: Just a big, scaling, flying brony with no relevant ETB effects. Hard to kill with damage, but easily blocked as well. Aside from Dread (who will just shuffle himself back in the deck), you get nothing if they just kill this the turn you cast it, whereas your other bombs at least have already done something.

- Nightmare Incursion: I'm not interested in removing cards my opponent might draw. If he does draw them, I feel confident I'll should have an answer or two in hand since I'm not clogging my deck up with this nonsense.

- Public Execution: Do you really want to pay 6 mana for an unconditional removal spell with a rarely relevant ability? There's a big difference between M13 Limited and DOTP 2013.

- Xathrid Gorgon: Slowwww, and leaves blockers, blockers that sometimes can actually still kill your dudes. Nope.

- Phage the Untouchable: You can't cheat this into play. It can be chumped. If you get to untap and swing and hit with your other bombs you've more than likely got the game in hand anyways. 4 toughness is not impressive for 7 mana. Sure, maybe you get to live the dream and Jace casts Telemin Performance and hits this. You get to send a "LOLOLOLOL"  message to that opponent. But come on, grow up.

- Avatar of Woe: Why oh why is this card even necessary with all the other tools in this deck? So maybe I can cast this for 2 against Jace. I would be scared to death to even have this in my deck against Jace. Mind Control. Clone + some combination of bounce or Crippling Chill. Against non-Jace decks? This is famous Lost antagonist Charles Winmore.

- Pestilence Demon: This immediately effects the board only if you have more than 8 mana or some combination of medallions out. Sometimes you can't even use his ability because you'll just kill yourself (the same can be said of Griselbrand, but come on, DRAW 7, take 7 (that he can still remedy)  >>>>>>> doing a point of damage here or there) I didn't run this guy in 2012, and I sure don't miss him here.

- Reiver Demon: See: Massacre Wurm

- Plague Wind: We. Have. Enough. Removal. Already. Nine? Why yes, I do realize that, phonetically speaking, that is German for NO.

PACK INSTINCT:
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CURVE:

0 (0): None

1 (5): 3x Prey Upon, 1x Primal Bellow, 1x Ulvenwald Tracker

2 (12): 4x Garruk's Companion, 1x Lightning Greaves, 4x Nature's Lore, 2x Primordial Hydra (because casting this for x=0 is a great time), 1x Vinelasher Kudzu

3 (6): 2x Cultivate, 1x Dungrove Elder, 3x Leatherback Baloth

4 (4): 1x Chameleon Colossus, 1x Master of the Wild Hunt, 1x Obstinate Baloth, 1x Timbermaw Larva

5 (4): 2x Garruk's Packleader, 1x Indrik Stomphowler, 1x Vorapede

6+ (5): 1x Primeval Titan, 1x Rampaging Baloths, 1x Terra Stomper, 1x Avenger of Zendikar, 1x Howl of the Night Pack

24 creatures, 12 other spells (Howl of the Night Pack is a creature though, a lot of them), 24x Forest (I find it mind-boggling that this is one of the few decks that doesn't have the 25 land mandate, not that I'm complaining mind you, I prefer 24 in these Duels decks)  (66.7%/33.3%)

THE WHYS:

- 3x Prey Upon: Well, at least we've got some kind of removal, right? Just try not to get blown out using this. If your opponent kills your guy in response, you ARE getting 2 for 1ed.

- 1x Primal Bellow: I always like to have at least 1 combat trick in a creature-based deck (2 is kind of pushing it though). This will also steal a game out of nowhere if your opponent is careless with managing his life total. Also, sometimes you need to combo this with Prey Upon so you don't lose your dude as well (or you cast this when your opponent is using Prey Upon on you, and you bellow "2 FOR 1!".

- 1x Ulvenwald Tracker: Well, here's your 4th (and repeatable) Prey Upon on a 1/1 body. Don't forget that he can use his ability on himself to fight, if you're desperate.

- 4x Garruk's Companion: Every deck needs their 2-drops, and tell me how you think a 3/2 Trample for 2 sounds? Pretty good, right? Run all 4.

- 1x Lightning Greaves: Haste. Shroud. 0 Equip Cost. Just remember the difference between Hexproof and Shroud...you can't target your own dude either, so no combat tricks with whatever is wearing this. Also, if you only have 1 dude out and this is on him, no Blanchwood Armor for you until you get another guy out, since "Unequip" isn't really a thing in this game.

- 4x Nature's Lore: Well, we've got some fatties in this deck, and a fair amount of creatures that want lands to come into play, so here you go. Filtering your deck out is always welcome as well.

- 2x Primordial Hydra: Against a majority of the decks currently available, casting this for x=1 isn't a bad thing if you've got nothing else going on. He grows himself without any additional investment.

- 1x Vinelasher Kudzu: Some may consider this a silly choice, but it is a 2-drop with upside. Just make sure you have an actual plan if you're gonna skip a Nature's Lore on turn 2 just to cast this guy. Greed ain't always that good Gordon.

- 2x Cultivate: Again, let's ramp in to some fatties, thin our deck out, and occasionally power something up.

- 1x Dungrove Elder: Here's a grovey example on why we want to run the forest fetchers and not the medallions. If you're expecting some kind of Larry the Cable Guy pun, you can just git on out of here.

- 3x Leatherback Baloth: Sure it's just a vanilla 4/5. But it only costs you THREE. Contrary to what you may have heard elsewhere, there is no such thing as a Leatherback Balrog in this game, nor is there an M. Brindle Bison.

- 1x Chameleon Colossus: You do realize that in the world of Duels, anything that has pro-"x" is awesome, right? Oh look, even his ability is awesome. You do realize he can swing for as much as 18 on turn 4 (and this is probably why he doesn't have Trample) if you've got a Primal Bellow in hand, right?

- 1x Master of the Wild Hunt: He makes a 2/2 Wolf every upkeep. His ability does a fine Prey Upon impression (which also works with the Wolves from Howl of the Night Pack if you ever find yourself in that situation). He's a 3/3 himself. You're just hunting for any kind of sliver of justification to exclude him, aren't you?

- 1x Obstinate Baloth: A 4/4 for 4 is ahead of the curve, the life gain is not irrelevant in a word of Goblins and Soldiers, and you even get to randomly hose a Liliana's Specter from time to time. I'll obstain from any further arguments. He's fine.

- 1x Timbermaw Larva: This dude IS a monster attacker, but for defensive purposes I'm leaving the other 2 home with their maw.

- 2x Garruk's Packleader: What do you do when all your early plays are dead? Draw more cards. Only 3 creatures in this build will never trigger him, so 87% of the time with him on the field (assuming he's the only creature you ever had in hand and cast), he will trigger from the casting of a dude (unless you're casting multiple dudes and can't do an x=3 Hydra). Also note: it says "enters the battlefield", so those 4/4 landfall Baloths will trigger him as well. 2 of these dudes is fine.

- 1x Indrik Stomphowler: I honestly don't like stomping the yard with this guy, but it's nice to have at least potential access to his ability. You still get a 4/4 out of the deal. Just don't Indrik Roll yourself by casting this and having to nuke your own Lightning Greaves or something.

- 1x Vorapede: It's a 5/4 with Vigilance and Trample that comes back as a 6/5 when it dies. What vor do you want?

- 1x Primeval Titan: NOW Prime Time feels like he belongs with a decent amount of cards now hungry for Forests.

- 1x Rampaging Baloths: Most people play it safe and treat this guy as a 7 drop (play him, play 7th land, get a dude), but if they have the removal, they have the removal. It's not like you can play a land in response or something (this is of course assuming that your opponent's pause button, and brain, is functioning properly). Just run him on out there on turn 6 if you're not sitting on a Titan. He's still a 6/6 Trample.

- 1x Terra Stomper: Can Terragood be a term, or is it simply too terribad to use?

- 1x Avenger of Zendikar: Again, see Rampaging Baloths (though this is 1 mana more expensive). If they have it, they have it, at least you've got a load of chump blockers out of the deal, right?

- 1x Howl of the Night Pack: In most cases, the game will end (in your favor) shortly after you cast this, a fine thing for a 7 drop. Howl can you lose you ask? Topdecks. Cautious opponents holding on to mass removal. Already ridiculous board states. 2 of these is a bit much to pack though.

THE WHY NOTS:

- Fog: The only redeeming quality of this particular card in this particular deck would be the hilarity of hearing your opponent, swinging for the win, pleading "Come on man, don't be a Fog."

- Emerald Medallion: I'm satisfied with Nature's Lore and Cultivate for ramping. They place nice with Dungrove Elder, Timbermaw Larva, and the like. Also, actually filtering lands out of your deck to increase the chance of drawing actual spells is great.

- Blanchwood Armor: Really at it's best on turn 3 after a turn 2 Companion, as your other Tramplers are 5 and 6+ drops. It's fine, but again, as will all creature enchantments that don't grant Hexproof/Shroud, you are leaving yourself open to the dreaded 2 for 1.

- Brindle Boar: So you chump blocked a 5/5 and sac'd this to gain 4 life, effectively gaining 9. So what's your follow up play, Bountiful Harvest.

- Genesis Wave: Let's see what this can POTENTIALLY get you in this particular deck, shall we?
    x=1: 3-4 mana: Reveal 1: Forest, Ulvenwald Tracker
    x=2: 4-5 mana: Reveal 2: Garruk's Companion, Lightning Greaves, Primordial Hydra (that dies if you put it on the battlefield), Emerald Medallion, Vinelasher Kudzu
    x=3: 5-6 mana: Reveal 3: Blanchwood Armor, Leatherback Baloth, Brindle Boar
    x=4: 6-7 mana: Reveal 4: Chameleon Colossus, Fangren Firstborn, Master of the Wild Hunt, Timbermaw Larva, Jayemdae Tome, Primal Huntbeast, Wildheart Invoker, Obstinate Baloth
    x=5: 7-8 mana: Reveal 5: Garruk's Packleaders (if you do this, put him into play before any other 3 power creatures so you can draw cards of any of the other creatures entering), Indrik Stomphowler, Ant Queen, Sentinel Spider, Vorapede
    x=6: 8-9 mana: Reveal 6: Rampaging Baloths (again, Baloths first, lands after), Terra Stomper, Epic Proportions, Primalcrux, Primeval Titan
    x=7: 9-10 mana: Reveal 7: Avenger of Zendikar (again, drop him first, then whatever lands you rip)
    x=8 or more: 10-11 or more mana: Reveal 8 or more: Khalni Hydra, Verdant Force

    Seems like a pretty poor mana investment to me. This isn't Elves with Elvish Archdruid and other mana accelerants you know.

- Fangren Firstborn: I'm a bit of a fan, but you're probably only getting one activation with this guy (if you get any at all). If you're getting more than that, well, you were probably already in good shape. I like the other 4 drops a tad more though. Firstborns aren't always the favorite.
    
- Jayemdae Tome: I just think Garruk's Packleader is a better card draw engine, plus he comes with a 4/4 body, and is triggered by every single thing in this build with the exception of Ulvenwald Tracker, the 2 Timbermaw Larvae, and Wild Hunt and Night Pack wolves. Do you want to pay 4 mana to draw an extra card, or do you want to pay 2 or more mana to draw a card and get a body on the field?

- Primal Huntbeast: Is a 3/3 Hexproof for 4 good enough if you don't hit your pump spells or Blanchwood Armor. You know what Primal Huntbeast is an anagram for? MI PAL THRUN, BEAST. Yes, Thrun, the Last Troll, you are sorely missed.

- Wildheart Invoker: Even with the ramp we have access to, you might as well tip that 8 over and read it as infinity.

- Ant Queen: I just don't see it without Overrun in this deck. I don't think I would even run Jade Mage here. 5/5 body is okayyyyyy though.

- Bountiful Harvest: If you're running this I'm just going to assume you have another bountiful harvest in a baggy next to you, and a whole lot of Pringles.

- Incremental Growth: So I need to have 3 creatures out, or I buff 1 or 2 of my opponent's creatures, or I don't cast this at all? How about I just don't include this, at all.

- Predatory Rampage: NOT [CARD]OVERRUN[/CARD]. Outside of the mirror or Ancient Wilds, your creatures are gonna be bigger than theirs anyways, and they'll probably already be chumping the fatties you're sending their way if they haven't killed them.

- Sentinel Spider: Yeah, well, we're just going to have to all suck it up and hope we can outrace some fliers if it comes to it. Why is this not Stingerfling?!?

- Epic Proportions: Well, your likelihood of getting 2 for 1ed with this particular card is lowered a bit since you can Flash it in, and granting Trample is great, but it's simply not as epic as my other 6 drops.

- Primalcrux: Worst case scenario he's a 6/6 trampler for 6 with no other abilities. In cases where he's even bigger, is it even really necessary? Your board is probably     looking pretty sweet. I'd rather have my 6 drops come with some kind of added bonus (yes, I consider "can't be countered" to be a bonus, of sorts)

- Boundless Realms: Flavor Text: "Planeswalking cannot be taught. Either you see the doors or you do not." - Nissa Revane   Oh, I see the door. It's right over there. Seriously. Go. What does this do if you don't already have a dude hungry for lands out? I'd rather just cast a Titan.

- Biorhythm: So for 8 mana you get an effect that's only good if you're already ahead on board, otherwise, you're basically just killing yourself. Sure, you can cast this after Howl of the Night Pack and get all DeBarge on a person and sing "the Biorhythm of the Night Pack, oh yeah", but come on, that's just horrible.

- Khalni Hydra : Sadly, this is just Terra Stomper #2 without the uncounterable clause. Sure, you could theoretically get him out on turn 4, but it's more realistic to simply get a Stomper on turn 5.

- Verdant Force : It's turbo Ant Queen for 8, without the birthing costs, and +2 P/T. Still underwhelming.

PEACEKEEPERS:
Show
CURVE:

0 (0): None

1 (5): 2x Doomed Traveler, 3x Elite Vanguard

2 (13): 3x Accorder Paladin, 2x Honor of the Pure, 2x Journey to Nowhere, 2x Raise the Alarm, 1x Spectral Rider, 3x Squadron Hawk

3 (10): 2x Attended Knight, 2x Fiend Hunter, 1x Flickerwisp, 2x Glorious Anthem, 1x Guardians' Pledge, 2x Oblivion Ring

4 (3): 2x Dawn Elemental, 1x Odric, Master Tactician

5 (2): 2x Geist-Honored Monk

6+ (2): 1x Captain of the Watch, 1x Sun Titan

24 creatures, 16 other spells (Raise the Alarm = creatures though), 25x Plains  (68.6%/31.4%)

THE WHYS:

- 2x Doomed Traveler: A 1 drop 1/1 that replaces himself with a 1/1 flyer if he goes to the grave. Seems good.

- 3x Elite Vanguard: Now that we have access to 4 anthem effects and 3 Accorder Paladins, this dude is awesome and will punish any kind of slow start by your opponent.

- 3x Accorder Paladin: According to me, this is just what an aggro deck wants...and with 3, you don't always have to be bashful about offering the trade if you've got another one waiting in the wings (not normally recommended though).

- 2x Honor of the Pure: You do see that every single creature you could possibly run in this deck is white, right?

- 2x Journey to Nowhere: Every deck needs removal, right? You don't believe me? You should never stop believing.

- 2x Raise the Alarm: You know when anthem effects are at their best? When you have a lot of creatures out. This gives you 2, at instant speed. "Alarm" in this case being an air horn followed by a mild roof-raising motion.

- 1x Spectral Rider: See: Elite Vanguard. But in this case he's 1 mana more expensive but (mostly) unblockable.

- 3x Squadron Hawk: It's all or nothing with this card (why would you ever run just 1???). Card advantage is card advantage, even if you're "only" drawing 2 more 1/1s with evasion.

- 2x Attended Knight: 3 power over 2 bodies, with the 2/2 having first strike. Have you attended any seminars on "value" lately?

- 2x Fiend Hunter: A riskier Journey to Nowhere as this is more easily removed. I find the reward here to be greater than Pacifism though as it's still a fine 1/3 body, and Pacifism won't stop any triggered or activated abilities a creature may have. This will.

- 1x Flickerwisp: So. Much. Utility. The 3/1 flying body is not bad either for 3 mana. Blink a Journey or O-Ring to a better target. Blink your token making creatures. Blink an opponent's land to force him to use a combat trick pre-combat or not at all. Blink one of your own lands for extra mana or to remove a blaze counter on it. Blink a dude that has a hurtful enchantment on it. Blink a token and kill it. Blink an opponent's Honor of the Pure to shrink his team for a turn. There's no real reason for me to go on, is there?

- 2x Glorious Anthem: See: Honor of the Pure. Also, remember this particular one says "creatures you control", so if you're 1v1ing on Planechase, that does have a chance to be relevant...

- 1x Guardians' Pledge: This is sort of our poor man's Overrun or Plague Wind. Always nice to have access to.

- 2x Oblivion Ring: Journey for any non-land permanent. Yes, you will use this on non-creatures a fair amount of the time.

- 2x Dawn Elemental: Well, we've got 2 now. With the 4 anthems and 3 paladins, this guy is quite the little aggro flyer, who plays great D when you're on your back foot.

- 1x Odric, Master Tactician: Just a 3/4 First Striker for 4 is perfectly fine. If you get to use his "ability" even once though, I'd imagine the game is over.

- 2x Geist-Honored Monk: At worst this is 5 power for 5, over 3 bodies. 2 of them with Flying, one with Vigilance, with scaling P/T. You should be honored to have access to this.

- 1x Captain of the Watch: 4 bodies for the price of 1 is a good deal, even if he only buffs soldiers. I wouldn't run more than 2 6+ drops in the deck, so it's either 2 of these or 1 and 1 Titan. I'm going with the latter.

- 1x Sun Titan: There are 25 different things you can recur in this build (not counting land), so I think he is perfectly acceptable here. Yes, he even brings your anthems back from the grave.

THE WHY NOTS:

- Loyal Sentry: I want to attack, not defend, and I have a lot of removal anyways. This is the dude on the ramparts talking trash to the invading army, but when he actually has to get out there and fight? Yeah.

- Master Decoy: Why does a deck named Peacekeepers need a decoy, when, you know, a card like Gideon's Lawkeeper has better work experience on his resume and does the same thing for cheaper? Anyways, tappers are good in defensive decks. Only so-so in offensive decks. No thanks.

- Pacifism: Even an aggro deck can have too much removal, and I feel this is the weakest of the bunch.

- Ring of Thune: Why do I care if my guys have vigilance? The only time I've seen it come up is when I've had it on a Master Decoy and I was able to declare him as an attacker and then tap something. The +1/+1 every turn, in practice, isn't all that awe-inspiring either.

- Crusader of Odric: He/she does have the potential to get out of hand, but I still think is outclassed by the other 3 drops, and definitely weaker in a build with no Captain's Calls.

- Intrepid Hero: This guy is like my little cocker spaniel. Always picking fights with big dogs, but anything mid-to-small-sized he cowers in fear from. There's enough removal in this deck anyways.

- Midnight Guard: "In the midnight hour, I can't feel your power. Just like a prayer, I don't expect you to get me there."

- Nightguard Patrol: So in exchange for Vigilance, we lose a 1/1 body, and a point of toughness on the other. The night is dark and full of garbage.

- Pennon Blade: So when is paying 6 mana to make one of your dudes a slightly larger Crusader of Odric a good deal? Don't pen your hopes of winning on this.

- Safe Passage: Yes, you can blow an opponent out with this, but isn't running a Pledge safer and more consistent?

- Captain's Call: So let's take a look at our other 4 drops. Those are still good without anthems. This? With no Crusaders to enable, not the most intimidating, especially at sorcery speed. I mean, it's fine and all, but there are better deals you can call upon in this deck.

- Elgaud Inquisitor: A 4 mana 2/3 Doomed Traveler with Lifelink. Elgaud, is 4 mana for a non-evasive 2/3 that makes a 1/1 sound like a deal? Is Lifelink even relevant in this deck?

- Mausoleum Guard: He's not bad, but really, he's double the Doomed Traveler for quadruple the price. Leum in your sideboard.

- Sigil of the New Dawn: It has potential, but it's an awful lot of mana to invest and keep up in this style of deck since it's not actually doing any damage itself.

- Windborne Charge: I charge you with explaining to the crowd how this is better than Guardians' Pledge a vast majority of the time.

- Archon of Justice: This is a good card on it's own, but I don't think this deck is really crying out for an Air Elemental to clog up the high-end of your  curve...and there are numerous ways of dealing with this without sending it to the grave.

- Turn the Tables: More like flip over a table when you see how poor this card turns out to be. A 5 mana situational removal spell isn't even that great in a non-aggro deck. You're not even guaranteed to kill things like a Leatherback Baloth or a Sphinx of Lost Truths with this.

- Spirit of the Hearth: Why? This deck already mauls Jace. Maybe 1 time out of 100 it saves you against Chandra's deck or from a game ending Corrupt but whatever.

- Archangel: Replace "5" with "3" and "Arch" with "Baneslayer" and then we'll talk.

- Mass Calcify: 25% of your matches (the 5% comes from Nefarox) this is going to be a dead card. Maybe sometimes it wins you a game, but you know what's better in this deck? Guardians' Pledge . That card is (again, most of the time) a one-sided sweeper or a game-ending overrun. Also, this card is SUPER RACIST.
Don't have the time to read through all of this right now. Just wanted to say that our Crosswinds is pretty much identical.
-1 Archaeomancer / +1 Call to Mind for the cost and it being a spell. However, I do like the fact you can bounce an Archaeomancer.
-1 Sphinx of Lost Truths / +1 Kraken Hatchling because the late-game is good enough and I just wanna reach it without trouble.
I've found Sphinx of Lost Truths to be helpful in getting through the inevitable mana flood that always happens with this deck. Don't even bother waiting to pay the kicker cost.
I wanna be the very best Like no one ever was To become first in ranked is my real test To beat them all is my cause.

Ranked 96 in 1 v 1 atm, use goblins and black control about equally.

There can only be one!
A bit in awe that you wouldn't play Primeval Titan in a deck that combos so well with it.  Of course, it thins your deck out and gives you more mana to play things off of draws from Garruk's Packleader.  More to the point, it directly comboes with or feeds Primal Bellow, Blanchwood Armor, Timbermaw Larva, Rampaging Baloths, and Howl of the Night Pack.  6 for a 6/6 trampler with a comes-into-play ability that works well with the rest of your deck?  There's a reason this card is so popular.

Also, is there some special reason you're playing with 1 each of Blaze and Red Sun's Zenith instead of just two of the latter? 
Also, is there some special reason you're playing with 1 each of Blaze and Red Sun's Zenith instead of just two of the latter? 

Just in case for the rare chance he needs/wants to kill one of his own Phoenixes without having to exile it? That's a thought that actually crossed my mind when I was playing the deck. Could be for an entirely different reason too, like avoiding an extra shuffle effect, but I'm not Mobius, so I can't tell you.
That, my friends, is a typo regarding Red Sun's Zenith. There's 2 in there. Fixed it. 
@Monsieur Wiggles: I just like the Sphinx for his triple Merfolk Looter ETB effect. If I get to kick him that's just a bonus. 

@Jizzon: I'm not doubting Prime Time's synergies with the deck, I just feel they're a bit underwhelming when, besides all the land fetching,  what you have is "just" a 6/6 trampler for 6 (ANGELLL OF DEATHHHHH!). 6+ drops having synergy with other 6+ drops isn't really too exciting for me. As far as the Larva goes, he's already beating for beating for at least 6 the turn after he comes out, what's an extra 2 damage when Prime Time comes into play worth in this particular deck most of the time? The same goes for Primal Bellow and Blanchwood Armor. You're usually hitting for massive chunks. You're not trying to chip a player out.  

I know he's a great card, but you can only put so many expensive cards in your deck, and with what we have so far, I feel Terra Stomper, double Howl of the Night Pack, Rampaging Baloths, and Khalni Hydra (though I sure hope I'm not actually casting him for 8) are more than enough. It's probably too much already. If we get another good 4 or less drop, I'll probably end up shaving a Howl.
I think I like Primeval Titan over Khalni Hydra. Just a 6/6 indeed, but even a 6/6 can wreck face, and it makes the Howls of the Night Pack a lot stronger when you're topdecking/casting them after Titan. Potentially winmore, but I'll take that extra little bit of synergy if a couple extra wolves lets me squeeze in lethal damage easier. 
It could go either way, but I feel better rolling the dice with a potential turn 4 or 5 8/8 trampler. over what Prime Time has to offer. Either way seems completely acceptable. I'd probably ratchet up the incredulousness though if people were dropping Prime Time for something like Ant Queen.
I agree with Brodo about PT x Hydra. Titans are probably the most OP creatures ever printed. Sure, Prime Time loses half of his powers fetching only basic lands, but he still have a awesome EtB effect, which means he's more resilient to removal. Must run, IMHO.

WotC doesn't care about flavor. Their forum is the only place where an ORC can kill a troll...

Lost around 120 posts in the forum migration

Post #1000 on Feb 02, 2013

Post #2000 on Sep 04, 2013

Can you actually get Khalni Hydra down turn 4 with Pack Instincts? I don't know the best case, but it was pretty much a 6 drop when I ran it and that didn't seem too special. Pretty much like having a second Terra Stomper, which isn't bad. I just like when I get some return from my finishers, even if it's just two forests.
The nice thing about the larger card pool this game offers is that you can adjust to what you're seeing trends in online.  Cards like Blanchwood Armor allow you to steamroll certain decks, but it opens up a better two-for-one possibility against many decks with good spot removal or bounce.  Timbermaw Larva and Fangren Firstborn are both decent four-drops, but at two toughness apiece, they can make you more succeptible to some of what both red decks pack.

We generally have most of the same ideas; I like your style.  Personally, I prefer to err on the side of overall resiliency and value, as I've had better results over the years when doing so.  So far, I've had the best luck with Liliana's and Yeva's decks, but all of them are contenders (though Jace leaves me wanting the most).  They really did do a good job setting up better overall balancing with this game. 
@Brodo: You're right, you can't get Hydra out on turn 4. If you go some combination of 1) land, Tracker....2)land, Companion....3)land, Baloth or Cultivate....you're still 1 mana short on turn 4. 

And this is why we have discussions. Back to Prime Time it is!

I just recognized the real problem here. I was confusing Khalni Hydra's reduced casting cost with Primalcrux's ability. I am super dumb.  
I just thought about it and you can run it out turn 4, but you need a perfect hand.

Turn 1:
Forest, Ulvenwald Tracker ( -1 :G: )

Turn 2:
Forest, Garruk's Companion ( -2 :G: )

Turn 3:
Forest, Nature's Lore, Garruk's Companion/Nature's Lore ( -3 :G:, or -2 :G: )

Turn 4:
Forest cast the glorious Khalni Hydra

Will have either 5 lands in play with a -3 reduction or 6 lands in play with -2 reduction with this setup. It uses almost all the cards you'll see by turn 4 when on the play though.
That's still a ridiculous turn 4 board though, empty hand or no. But I admit, still probably not as good as having access to a Primeval Titan
Ancient Wilds: You made a lot of questionable decisions on card selection in this deck, but leaving taunting elf out is just flatly wrong. The question isn't whether overrun is better than taunting elf, it is whether you would rather have a taunting elf or draw 15 or 20 more cards looking for that one overrun in your deck.

Celestial Light: I agree mostly, but White Sun's Zenith? Basically a useless card. At 4 cost it is a joke, at 5 it is bad, and for 6 you have better options. Anything more than that and the game should already be over. 
This is more of a forum question than anything else, because that is a boatload of information in one thread.

Can someone design a thing where I can type the words, and it will provide the html links to the mouseover cards?

If that's impossible, would it be possible to train myself to be able to type the text quickly?  It takes a lot of time to come up with the deck ideas, but I bet it took colonel chicken hours and hours to format his 1v1 dream team.  I can't really comment on something here without tons of text to help the reader or op get on topic (the topic is all the things in 1v1... that's the game MtG DotP 2013 lol go play it).  Maybe contract with Wizards to create a spellchecker program that automatically converts text to links or something if ya into such things.
I run Ancient Wilds with both Taunting Elfs, my Natures Order targets are Gaias Revenge and the Elderscale Wurm and I run all the flash guys (Yeva, Callers of the Wild and Briarpacks) because I love the tricks exspecially in combination with Vengevine. Beside that I have 2 Wild Pairs for endgame (which can be out turn 5 easy) and alot of the single cards that all do something different to cover as many situations as possible. I think exspecially with the additonal Natures Order we get, Eternal Wittness, Fauna Shaman and the Wild Pairs this is really a deck that lets you search for your guys.

The main problem is being restricted to only 2 creatue removals that even give them board power and very costy enchantment/artifact removals. Atleast we get another beast within.

Concerning your list I think Gigantomancer is a really horrible card atleast compared to what you COULD have instead with the Natures Order. 
This is more of a forum question than anything else, because that is a boatload of information in one thread.

Can someone design a thing where I can type the words, and it will provide the html links to the mouseover cards?


It is actually pretty easy to do this.
Just type [c]Giant Growth[/c] and it will show up as Giant Growth.

For decks or to save time, you can use the decklist tag:

[deck=Pump Spells]
1 Giant growth
1 Titanic Growth
[deck]

Would be:



Note that the number in front of the card name in a deck tag is what makes the tag realize it is a card, so if there is no number, the card will just appear as plain text. Just typing a number is probably faster than using card tags for each individual card.

Hope that helps.




Tyvm lildjdude93, I've bookmarked this page!  I'll use it next time ......"window.parent.tinyMCE.get('post_content').onLoad.dispatch();" contenteditable="true" />test

Manaplasm
Honor of the Pure



Hmmm, tyvm!  Don't want to sort this one out atm


- You know what's hilarious about this deck? By my calculations this is the ONLY deck that can pump out a turn 3 kill (barring Planechase shenanigans). Opening 7 on the play: 2 land, triple Phantasm, double Chancellor.
1) Island, Phantasm, go
2) Phantasm swing for 5, Island, double Phantasm go
3) Swing for 15, gg.




I've hit the DOUBLE Phantasm, double Chancellor jackpot once.




It's funny that not even this deck's nemesis, Goblins, can claim a turn 3 kill.




Naw gobs can manage a turn 3 kill with a god hand too.


Opening hand: mountain, mountain, mountain, goblin guide, goblin bushwhacker, chancellor of the forge.


T1: Draw shock.  Reveal chancellor, get 1/1 haste goblin, mountain, guide, swing for 3


T2: Draw a goblin grenade.  Mountain, bushwhacker, swing for 7. (10 total damage)


T3: Draw a goblin grenade.  Chuckle maniacally.  Swing for 4 then blow stuff up with 2x grenades and 1x shock (26 total damage).



Not that these god hands are terribly practical.  I honestly like this sort of theorycrafting exercise just as much as gameplay though.  Can anyone manage better than 26 damage by turn 3?




- You know what's hilarious about this deck? By my calculations this is the ONLY deck that can pump out a turn 3 kill (barring Planechase shenanigans). Opening 7 on the play: 2 land, triple Phantasm, double Chancellor.
1) Island, Phantasm, go
2) Phantasm swing for 5, Island, double Phantasm go
3) Swing for 15, gg.




I've hit the DOUBLE Phantasm, double Chancellor jackpot once.




It's funny that not even this deck's nemesis, Goblins, can claim a turn 3 kill.




Naw gobs can manage a turn 3 kill with a god hand too.


Opening hand: mountain, mountain, mountain, goblin guide, goblin bushwhacker, chancellor of the forge.


T1: Draw shock.  Reveal chancellor, get 1/1 haste goblin, mountain, guide, swing for 3


T2: Draw a goblin grenade.  Mountain, bushwhacker, swing for 7. (10 total damage)


T3: Draw a goblin grenade.  Chuckle maniacally.  Swing for 4 then blow stuff up with 2x grenades and 1x shock (26 total damage).



Not that these god hands are terribly practical.  I honestly like this sort of theorycrafting exercise just as much as gameplay though.  Can anyone manage better than 26 damage by turn 3?





I can't beat 26 damage, but there is another way to win on turn 3:

Turn 1 - play mountain, reveal Chancellor and play guide, swing for 3 - 3 damage total

Turn 2 - play mountain, play another guide and a Raging Goblin swing for 6 - 9 damage total

Turn 3 - play mountain, play Goblin Chieftan, swing for 14 - 23 damage total

I hope my maths is right

I like your way better, as the Goblin Grenades really help push the damage through. However my way only requires 8 cards whereas your way requires 9.

-1 Archaeomancer / +1 Call to Mind for the cost and it being a spell. However, I do like the fact you can bounce an Archaeomancer.



I run all the Archaeomancers *and* Call to Mind currently, but when I experiment I take out the latter before the former.  Its cost and flexibility are convenient in that you can wait for a situation to present itself and then pick out the card you need and cast it same turn, but I haven't found it *as* useful as Archaeomancer's affinity with Rite of Replication -- early game, it's a great way to stall with infinite chump blockers for 4 mana if you get stuck waiting on a draw (or mana flooded).  Late game, a kicked Rite on an Archeomancer is generally GG, especially in those cases where whatever your opponent has out is not good Rite material for you.

I run all the Archaeomancers and also Call to Mind.  I think what I leave out is Gravitational Shift.  I've also made room for Bribery now that it's unlocked.  I also second those saying Primeval Titan over Khalni Hydra
@Black_Acre: Disagreeing is a thing, yes, but I'd like to hear your views on why Taunting Elf's exclusion is flatly wrong. Specifically, why do you think it's so essential to the deck? I already gave my reasons. I never actually said I was dependant on Overrun to win me games, I simply stated one topdeck is better than the other.

As far as White Sun's Zenith goes, I don't see how instant speed dudes are useless. Sure, casting it for 4 mana is not impressive. At 5 you get 4 power, pretty on curve except for the fact that this is at INSTANT SPEED. 6 get 6. 7 get 8. This isn't like Goblin Offensive or something...instant speed makes all the difference. There are even techy plays to make every now and again when you have a combination of Soul Warden + Ajani's Pridemate/Serra Ascendant out. It also let's you recover from sweepers pretty effectively, shuffles back in your deck, makes seemingly hopeless No Mercy/Dread situations winnable, etc.

The majority of games don't actually end when 6 mana is availiable. Especially with this deck if you don't aggro out with an early Pridemate or Ascendant. These tend to be long, dragged out, slugfests. And how much better is a Purity or Felidar Sovereign than 6 power over 3 bodies at instant speed? The difference isn't that extreme.

@Kungfudojo: I swapped out Elderscale Wurm for the Gigantomancer because in situations where Wurm's ability is relevant, you're often loathe to swing with him. You have to win the game sometime, right? Orkin Man is at least more of a team player.

@Forsy: It really didn't take terribly long. The longest part was simply playing and formulating my opinions/strategies now that the game has been out for a little bit. I have everything stored on seperate word files and I just copy and pasted here. The difference in typing Goblin Guide and Goblin Guide is mostly negligible (to me).

Oh yeah, and I'm done revamping everything with our shiny new 2 promo unlocks.
I don't like your krenko build.

You have only 4 cards playable in 1 turn and that is too less for sligh. On 2 turn you can add only 2 guys who can attack, so in most games 2 first turn = 0 damage to your opponent. Raging gob isn't a great card but since you can't have 4 guides there is nothing better.

1: mountain -> raging gob ->1 damage
2: mountain -> kicked brushacker -> 4 damage
5 damage on 2 turn not bad.

Also more creatures on battlefield is always an advantage for you (reckless, incinerate, grenade)

Squee has a nice synergy but i think it's just too slow for 3cmc. I prefer to sacrifice a 1/1 which i probably don't really need. Maybe i'm wrong.

Thunder Trash - it's a joke? card disadvantage, no flying, no trample, no nothing, can be removed by zillions cards...

Blistertick Shaman - piker with additional 1 damage on turn 3? What's the point? The same turn when you can play chieftain, warchief, arms dealer which are ten times more useful for the same cost.

Rummaging goblin - i think he's good also in practice, you don't need more than 5 lands in this deck and landflood is the worst enemy for this deck.

Other choices are good.
Squee is so good because its something thatll remain if you do get swept by Day of Judgment or something. Sure its just a 1/1 but you have it the entire game, with exception to Swords or Red Suns Zenith. You kinda have to overextend with goblins to win really, especially in certain matchups.
@Protagenius: Thunder Thrash is there in cases where you need to go big against something like Garruk. If I know I'm playing him (or another deck light on removal), having a 7/7 on turn 3 is not exactly terrible. And sometimes you just need to shoot an x/1 creature down with Arsonist. I'll make a 4/4 for that.

The Shaman? Well, if you're running the Raging Goblins which I'm implying you do, don't you want to clear some x/1s out of their way (or x/2s post-combat)? You're not always going to have the Shock or Gempalm Incinerator.

All that being said though, those two (and maybe Arms Dealer) are next on the chopping block once more cards are released.

And in theory, on turn 2: I can have Arsonist, Guide, Guide, attacking.

Your candor leads me to believe that you want to go as fast as possible (which is correct), but then you champion the rummagers. They can't swing and loot at the same time you know. And if you're running rummagers then why not Squee with them??
@Black_Acre: Disagreeing is a thing, yes, but I'd like to hear your views on why Taunting Elf's exclusion is flatly wrong. Specifically, why do you think it's so essential to the deck? I already gave my reasons. I never actually said I was dependant on Overrun to win me games, I simply stated one topdeck is better than the other.

As far as White Sun's Zenith goes, I don't see how instant speed dudes are useless. Sure, casting it for 4 mana is not impressive. At 5 you get 4 power, pretty on curve except for the fact that this is at INSTANT SPEED. 6 get 6. 7 get 8. This isn't like Goblin Offensive or something...instant speed makes all the difference. There are even techy plays to make every now and again when you have a combination of Soul Warden + Ajani's Pridemate/Serra Ascendant out. It also let's you recover from sweepers pretty effectively, shuffles back in your deck, makes seemingly hopeless No Mercy/Dread situations winnable, etc.

The majority of games don't actually end when 6 mana is availiable. Especially with this deck if you don't aggro out with an early Pridemate or Ascendant. These tend to be long, dragged out, slugfests. And how much better is a Purity or Felidar Sovereign than 6 power over 3 bodies at instant speed? The difference isn't that extreme.




Taunting elf costs 1 mana and it WINS GAMES. There are very few cards in this format which can claim that. The combos in Ancient Wilds result in creature advantage, but it isn't laden with trample like Pack Instinct. You need to connect with those creatures and taunting elf is an invaluable solution. Passing it up is simply mind bogling to me.   



 
Passing it up for a Ring that grants Trample when I actually need to push through a clogged board is mind-boggling? Much like the ring, Taunting Elf does NOTHING without other creatures, but I feel the ring does more over a period of time. If they're killing all your creatures you're ringing up, guess what, they're also killing all your creatures you're trying to push through with Elf. Okay sure, it's one more thing to sac to Natural Order. It's one mana and WINS GAMES SITUATIONALLY, sure. You might as well say the same thing about a Cathedral Sanctifier when at 27 life and Serra Ascendants on the board.

I'm not telling people necessarily not to run it. I just won't. In my personal experience I run just fine, and I have lost to a Taunting Elf exactly ONCE (because some dude put a Wurmweaver Coil on it). I recogize all the applications: pump, bounce after blockers, make my creatures unblockable, et al...I just think it requires too much support to be good. I fail to see how that is on the level of mind-boggling. You make it sound like it's equatable to cutting Goblin Guides for Lowland Oafs.
Passing it up for a Ring that grants Trample when I actually need to push through a clogged board is mind-boggling? Much like the ring, Taunting Elf does NOTHING without other creatures, but I feel the ring does more over a period of time. If they're killing all your creatures you're ringing up, guess what, they're also killing all your creatures you're trying to push through with Elf. Okay sure, it's one more thing to sac to Natural Order. It's one mana and WINS GAMES SITUATIONALLY, sure. You might as well say the same thing about a Cathedral Sanctifier when at 27 life and Serra Ascendants on the board.

I'm not telling people necessarily not to run it. I just won't. In my personal experience I run just fine, and I have lost to a Taunting Elf exactly ONCE (because some dude put a Wurmweaver Coil on it). I recogize all the applications: pump, bounce after blockers, make my creatures unblockable, et al...I just think it requires too much support to be good. I fail to see how that is on the level of mind-boggling. You make it sound like it's equatable to cutting Goblin Guides for Lowland Oafs.



If you honestly put Cathedral Sanctifier on the same level as Taunting Elf you are insane. You make it seem like you have to choose between Taunting Elf and Ring of Kalonia. How about instead you keep both and drop something crappy like Momentous Fall or even [Card]Gaea's Revenge[/card].
Oh, I don't know, maybe because I like drawing cards with Momentous Fall in response to a removal spell or when my hand is barren, and gaining life? What happens when you're only hitting your x/1s and lands? Surely you want to draw extra cards, right?

I want effect: "push through damage on board stalls when needed with a card that needs a lot of support". I don't feel this effect is absolutely essential so I make room in my deck for only 1 card like this. I choose Ring.

And Gaea's Revenge? Sometimes you Order up some Revenge on turn 4 against decks that can barely do anything about him. Exalted is a good one (barring No Mercy...even Silent Arbiter is pretty poor against him). Jace? Chandra if they don't double Flamebreak you? (though I'd probably just get a Pelakka Wurm if I wasn't stuck with one in hand in that case).

Am I to believe you've won every game where you've resolved a Taunting Elf? That sounds like insanity to me.
Your candor leads me to believe that you want to go as fast as possible (which is correct), but then you champion the rummagers. They can't swing and loot at the same time you know. And if you're running rummagers then why not Squee with them??



I run rummagers because there are not enough good quality cards to end every game in fifth turn (or even earlier). And then when opponent has good defence, you can't attack plus your hand is empty. So you just sit and wait for one game ending card (dragon, commander, grenade, krenko). Whenever you draw a land or even other not much helping card you do nothing whole turn. In those not very rare moments rummaging gives you speed to draw 2 cards a turn, so it doubles your chance to draw something that matters and kill your opponent before he kills you. With rummagers i think the whole deck runs faster. As i said any land above 5 is a blank card, so you can also build a card advantage.

Squee is not bad, but you need at least one other card to get value from him, and only with arms dealer that value would be constant, not one-off trick. Also you don't get any speedboost from him.



Ok, let's talk about chandra.

Dragon Hatchling - i hate those guys because they drain all mana and suddenly die, so you waste your time and resources with this.

Searing Blaze - it's too situational card for me. In practice you have to play this as sorcery on first arrived creature (even when it's not worth to do it) because you never know when you draw next land.

Flames of the Blood Hand - what's the point to play this card unless you are going to win this turn? (I know there is spitfire or phenixes but there are also much better cards to cooperate with them and those cards are good on their own)

I think medallions really help to this deck (probably best second turn drop)

I would play 2 magma phoenixes because having as much sweepers as possible is important to this deck (and they deal with flyers as well)

Have to admit, I hated Gaea's Revenge in 2012, but in Ancient Wilds, being able to Natural Order him out can put some serious pressure on your opponent fast.  He's solid as a one-of, especially if you're also packing Taunting Elf.  I do plan on running Soul of the Harvest once it hits, and the synergy with Erratic Portal and cards like the elves is really nice.

Protagenius, though your candor is a bit barbed, I do agree with what you've said about both of the red decks.  I'll be running Chandra's as a big red deck once it gets an additional copy of Inferno Titan and Hostility, as well as the great board-sweeper Chain Reaction.  Love the Ruby Medallions in the deck.  And yeah, Magma Phoenix absolutely hoses many of the decks you'll face.
Glad to see I'm not the only one running Blanchwood Armor. Whenever I mention it people just start screaming "2 for 1!" like they have tourettes or something. That card on a Garruks Companion has saved me from GG every time I've had the chance to play them on turn 3
What are you running against, mostly?  Blanchwood Armor is definitely a powerful card, but yeah, after I got two-for-oned with it a bit too often, I pulled mine.  Early against red, either green, or unlucky blue, it's definitely a house, though, so yeah.  Will you still run them when Dungrove Elder is released?
I ve switched to running one taunting elf to give a shot to the spawnrithe. Since she is so situational, having one in the deck isn't too unreliable: there are effectively multiple chances to get her out of th deck, even discarding her or chumping if needed will still give you a chance to get her back on the field when you can use her. 
I can't wait for the second vengevine, there will be quite some aggro coming out of this deck if built for it in the future.


In the mean time it is getting very very hard to make the cuts. Even gigantomancer has his place, not on turn four, but on landdrop five or six, he can make for a huge surprise. People are getting wise to elderscale anyway ^^. 
The reason Taunting Elf wins games (assuming he's properly programmed) is simple: When your combined creature power is =/> your opponents life total, you win.

You don't need trample if your opponent can't block your creatures.
i.e. Overrun doesn't necessarily win you the game if your opponent has blockers.
Overrun just this side of absolutely wins you the game if you have Taunting Elf.