BR Control - Call a Spade a Spade

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So if the format is all about resolving the obvious bombs or breathing really hard with aggro really fast.... why not flex your insane mental powers and beat everyone?

Disrupt, remove, gain tremendous value, draw lots of cards and win through an obnoxious late game army of pack rats or a rakdos' return for x=16+ or X=8 Copied? 



Sideboard is for whatever I deem to be the most problematic. Note that this deck can use Havoc Festival if some smarmy WG player thinks boarding in Centaur Healer is gonna save them. And it can use Mutilate. And Sever. And Ultimate Price. AND Rakdos Charm. The sideboard is pretty sexy.

Standard's Strongest? ... it just might be....

EDIT: Tweaked the best deck in standard's cards. The sideboard is not the best sideboard in standard.

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"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

Cool. -1 Flames of the Firebrand, +1 Appetite?
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Could I play Olivia over Pack Rat and Liliana of the Veil over Dark Realms? 

You get beat with mana investment instead of cards and then more discard stuff. Maybe I'm just lazy and don't want to buy dark realms.  

My problem is lack of instant speed removal. And where are the bonfires? If I'm playing this I want to miracle stuff.  
I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks festival is worth playing.  Maybe if you say it people will believe it's a thing -.-

What's your thought on card draw in this deck?  Is the 2 of underworld connections enough, or would you consider either sign in blood or something else?
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Sad I missed what summoned the authorities.

That said I don't think you need Sign. Lili 3.0 and Connections draw a lot of cards... plus flames/mizzium/chandra provide CA... and Appetite/Duress/Pillar remove CA sources from opponents. And dreadbore for Jace, of course.

Pack Rat/Rakdos Return are late game mana dumps. You want to emblem Lili 3.0 asap. Then you can just blast someone in the face and Sphinx's Revelation is just a giggle because you burn them twice as hard.

Liliana of the Veil is a no-no. You have no value pitches and so if you just want a Tribute to hunger, play Tribute to Hunger.

Olivia is ok, obviously... but she's pretty easily coped with because she's a single body and if you're hoping to ride her to a win that can be a letdown. I use nighthawk because he clutters the air and mitigates connection life loss and trades with Angel of Serenity if you time it appropriately.

EDIT: If you want a 3rd Appetite cut a Duress. I think you want 3 Flames. So good with reanimator -> craterhoof trying to be a thing.

EDIT2: Havoc Festival would be a strict sideboard card only and no more than a 2x, but I'd need a really narrow matchup to want to bring it in I think. 

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"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

I think you want some instant speed removal main deck. Thundermaw HellkiteRestoration Angel being in standard means you probably want something that kills a creature instantly. 

Does pack rat/nighthawk/rakdos's return get there? Just doesn't seem like enough damage to win games with Thragtusk, Centaur Healer, Huntmaster, Sphinx's Revelation, and deathrite shaman seeing play.

"This list much made Niche barf a lil' in his mouth, so I can be proud of that." -rstnme

Thundermaw generally won't one shot you. The curve keeps the board clear for you so you have the luxury of untapping and presenting an answer. That said I'd cut Nighthawks for Ultimate Price/Murder first. A 2/2 split is probably sexiest.

Regarding killing your opponent... once you Slaughter Games Thragtusk (or Sphinx's Revelation when they tap out) you'll be surprised at how easy it is to kill your opponent. Rakdos, Rats, and Chandra get you there. 

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"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

I like it, but the biggest glaring issue I see is that it gets taken to the shed by anything that can play on the stack (since almost everything in the deck is Sorcery-speed, and the number of proactive elements is fairly minimal). Flash is probably a nightmare and even though you want to beat UWC senseless, you'll probably get stumped by virtue of their spells having a tendancy to resolve first when they want it to resolve first.
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I fail to see how you cannot outplay WU Flash. You can pre-empt their permission, proactively answer Resto Angel, force misplays by simply resolving a nighthawk, and then strip whatever saves them from you once you hit 4 mana and cast your first Slaughter Games. And its an obvious truth that WU is terrible once hellbent. The telegraphs of the punches get worse... you just have to pay attention.

Trying to beat WU at instant speed isn't actually possible. The deck you'd build to do so would fold to everything including WU half the time.

If you're not comfortable without some instant speed interaction like I said... cut some nighthawks... but you probably want the body. In particular with Lili 3.0s -3 power. 

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Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes


If you're not comfortable without some instant speed interaction like I said... cut some nighthawks... but you probably want the body. In particular with Lili 3.0s -3 power. 



This sentence made me miss Lashwrithe =(
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Yup I've been meddling with such mindset for a deck. Attacking, hand and lib for key cards. I just couldn't establish good win punches.

Will try.
I fail to see how you cannot outplay WU Flash. You can pre-empt their permission, proactively answer Resto Angel, force misplays by simply resolving a nighthawk, and then strip whatever saves them from you once you hit 4 mana and cast your first Slaughter Games. And its an obvious truth that WU is terrible once hellbent. The telegraphs of the punches get worse... you just have to pay attention.

Trying to beat WU at instant speed isn't actually possible. The deck you'd build to do so would fold to everything including WU half the time.

If you're not comfortable without some instant speed interaction like I said... cut some nighthawks... but you probably want the body. In particular with Lili 3.0s -3 power. 



I think you're overlooking my point-It isn't about beating Flash at the stack game, it's that having some way to interact at instant speed is absolutlely crucial when you're caught between meat swings and tempo pushes and not being one or the other. be it through instant speed removal or some way to durdle at instant speed. Standard doesn't exactly have a great selection of instants, but even durdlemonsters like Gravepurge are worth considering.


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I think you're overlooking my point-It isn't about beating Flash at the stack game, it's that having some way to interact at instant speed is absolutlely crucial when you're caught between meat swings and tempo pushes and not being one or the other. be it through instant speed removal or some way to durdle at instant speed. Standard doesn't exactly have a great selection of instants, but even durdlemonsters like Gravepurge are worth considering. I'll post a list soon.



Just run reverberate in the sideboard.  Most of the things you need instant speed answers to are counters and sphinx's revelation.  Reverb helps with both.  Other than that, if they're counting on resto angel, you could always run some number of thunderbolt.

I'm just not sure there's enough draw, especially if pack rat is going to be a win con.  Maybe a 1 of staff of nin
I don't see Pack Rat being that great of an end-game in standard. There's a lot more removal out there, as well as just better creatures that can answer him. Swamps from Liliana 3.0 are about the only thing worth throwing away to it. But I haven't tested with him. Untapping with Olivia Voldaren usually spells GG for most opponents. I like Sign in Blood a lot. Chandra can even -2 it to drain them for 4 if you're close enough. SiB also makes it a LOT easier to keep 2-land hands. Bloodgift Demon can also be a quick clock if you get him to stick and provides a decent amount of card advantage as well.
I see what you did there.

Nice. Pretty much what I built first draft, only I had Desecration Demon in there over the Nighthawks and eventually added more beef. And then decided that I'd rather be pitching cards to Lili of the Veil then to Pack Rat in a format with as many sweepers running around as this one.

But I told you Lili 3.0 was good.

Edit: I also recommend a Staff of Nin, or a Bloodgift, in place of one of the rats. If you wanna run them 3 is the correct number, especially in a deck that can see as many cards as this one. If you time it right, the only time you'll ever actually need to cast more than one is if they top a sweeper that you haven't already culled off with Slaughter Games.
I want to be Cultured.
But I told you Lili 3.0 was good.


...in b/g zombies...
I hate dogs.
I think I can make a Staff or two work.

Also, I need Keyrunes in here. All the mana.

Pack Rat beats spot removal. Olivia and Bloodgift do not. If spot removal is the concern, switching to cards that can get easily 1:1'd isn't that right action.

Sign in Blood is unnecessary... and if you're using it to justify keeping 2 land hands that's actually sub optimal magic play. It's the same as keeping a 1 lander because you got a Ponder/Preordain in the other 6. 

I'll update the OP with some changes. Hurray. 

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"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes



Pack Rat beats spot removal. Olivia and Bloodgift do not. If spot removal is the concern, switching to cards that can get easily 1:1'd isn't that right action.
 



I would agree with that if you weren't packing loads of hand destruction, but I can see the logic so I can't really argue too much. Keyrunes are outstanding, what would you drop though?

@Felis - And in decks like this one, where every element of her synergises with what you want to do. Getting a land every turn to feed to Rats or pump up an eventual Return is good. As is her -3 being either plain old spot removal or a damn near insta-win via a ridiculous life swing with Nighthawk. And if you manage to build enough points to get an ultimate out of her it turns Return into a straight up win condition.
I want to be Cultured.
I changed the main. I have no problem swapping Nighthawks out for Keyrunes (which I did, better Thragtusk defense.... and with a lili pump crashes into big problems like griselbrand/aos without blinking).

I pulled a quantity of Flames and Rat for 2 Ultimate Price. Those were fair suggestions and worth tinkering with.

Lili 3.0 stays. She's the chair of the hotsauce committee. Being able to cast a staff and do other stuff is pretty sweet... like return for 7 in the same turn. Winnnnnnnning. 

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"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

Serious question - When you side in Pithing Needle, what are you doing it for?
I want to be Cultured.
Generally you want it to cope with Jace/Tamiyo so you can keep your limited supply of burn pointing at the face. Dreadbore won't always be enough to rely on since those decks use 5-6 planeswalkers and you need to resolve it also. It's a lot easier to stick a Needle early and it doubles as a virtual 4 for 1 each time you play it... and it attracts Detention Sphere... which is good since Pack Rat.

It's just a great all purpose card... use it. 

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Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

Fair enough, I'll consider it, Walker meta is cool.
I want to be Cultured.
pack rat

since its your only creature, why even give them a chance to hit it with removal and set you back a turn?  i don't see it.  i'd just run more spells.  could you consider running a miser elixer?  go for that infinite game like sphinx's revelation.dec?  of course, not as good, but just throwing it out there. 

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pack rat

since its your only creature, why even give them a chance to hit it with removal and set you back a turn?  i don't see it.  i'd just run more spells.  could you consider running a miser elixer?  go for that infinite game like sphinx's revelation.dec?  of course, not as good, but just throwing it out there. 



You don't cast Pack Rat until you can make 2 more pack rats. Thereby spot removal won't be an issue. A sweeper will be required.

The trick is because you don't run many creatures as games progress against decks that use sweepers they will stack up in the hand... and a slaughter games for Supreme Verdict/D-Sphere will usually yield a 2 or 3 for 1. Or Rakdos Return will clear those out. Generally when you're ready to play a Rat you're ready to proactively protect it... in a permanent way.

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"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

eh... seems gimmicky

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Gimmicky? It's called playing smart. You won't need pack rat to block or handle creatures. You do not crash him out if you do not have mana to make a second. That's two basic and comfortable truths of him in this deck.

Using your disruption to protect your wincon? That's not a gimmick at all.

If you don't play creatures sweepers don't get cast. They sit in the hand. You can always rely on your opponent having them there if they're in color. The only catch is naming the right one (always verdict g1, sometimes terminus g2/3).

I know you of all people are smart enough to do this right. 

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"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

This might sound slightly retarded, since the card is obviously overpriced and has only seen very marginal play as a SB option in limited, but I was looking through my card database the other night and I stumbled upon Night Terrors and wanted to get peoples opinions on it.

Like I said, I know it is overpriced, and that Appetite for Brains and Duress pretty much do the same thing but for cheaper.

That said, it hits all the same things Appetite for Brains does, but also hits things that it doesn't (Centaur Healer, Geist of Saint Traft, Loxodon Smiter, Geralf's Messenger, Gravecrawler, Ajani, Caller of the Pride, Liliana of the Veil, Pyreheart Wolf, Dreg Mangler, Fiend Hunter, Snapcaster Mage, Augur of Bolas, Guttersnipe, Izzet Staticaster, Lyev Skyknight, Mentor of the Meek, Wolfir Avenger, Silverblade Paladin, Ash Zealot, Deathrite Shaman, Invisible Stalker, Mayor of Avabruck, Pack Rat, Precinct Captain, Strangleroot Geist, Nightshade Peddler, Runechanter's Pike, and Keyrunes), as well as a bunch of other 1-3 drops that aren't as relevant as the above mentioned ones.

It hits all the high value targets that Appetite for Brains does (Thragtusk, Thundermaw Hellkite, Craterhoof Behemoth, etc), and Exiles like Appetite as well, cutting off reanimation, scavenge, Deathrite Shaman and Moorland Haunt shenanigans.

It also hits X spells unlike Appetite, dealing with stuff like Sphinx's Revelation and Rakdos's Return.

It hits all the same things Duress does, stripping PWs/removal/CA cards/Artifacts/Enchantments from your opponents hand, and unlike Duress, it Exiles, cutting off both Deathrite Shaman and Snapcaster Mage shenanigans, as well as general flashback stuff (getting rid of both Lingering Souls and its flashback as an example).

The fact that it costs 3 means it may just be a bit too durdle to really have a place anywhere, but it certainly has some potential.

Thoughts?
"I have existed from the morning of the world and I shall exist until the last star falls from the night. Although I have taken the form of Gaius Caligula, I am all men as I am no man and therefore I am a God."
3 mana yeeeeouch man. Being able to hit Geist and Lili 2.0 is nice... but I seriously don't think at 3 mana its worth more than a glance.

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"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

That is what I figured, at 3 cmc it seems like it could be a bit too durdle to really do much, but like I said, there are just a ton of things in the meta that it could be good against (sadly, since it costs 3, most of them will come down before you can strip them of it, unless you are on the play).

Really wish it was :B::B:.

Just figured I would get peoples opinion on it, since it certainly does have some potential. Likely not enough to be really playable, but you never know. Even if for some reason it would be worth playing, its definitely nothing more than a SB card anyways.
"I have existed from the morning of the world and I shall exist until the last star falls from the night. Although I have taken the form of Gaius Caligula, I am all men as I am no man and therefore I am a God."
I didn't like Distress either, so I wouldn't be a fan at BB either.

I'm a snob. If they take away my Dark Ritual... I expect black's one saving grace to be 1 mana discard spells that are efficient and reward correct decisions. And huge, undercosted creatures. That's clearly in my color pie.

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"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

I didn't like Distress either, so I wouldn't be a fan at BB either.

I'm a snob. If they take away my Dark Ritual... I expect black's one saving grace to be 1 mana discard spells that are efficient and reward correct decisions. And huge, undercosted creatures. That's clearly in my color pie.



You mean like Treacherous Pit-Dweller....lmao sorry Niche, I just couldn't help myself there.
"I have existed from the morning of the world and I shall exist until the last star falls from the night. Although I have taken the form of Gaius Caligula, I am all men as I am no man and therefore I am a God."
Unplayable, undercosted fat creatures. Sorry about that.

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"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

I didn't like Distress either, so I wouldn't be a fan at BB either.

I'm a snob. If they take away my Dark Ritual... I expect black's one saving grace to be 1 mana discard spells that are efficient and reward correct decisions. And huge, undercosted creatures. That's clearly in my color pie.



You mean like Treacherous Pit-Dweller....lmao sorry Niche, I just couldn't help myself there.



Don't tempt him... He'll find a way to make it work.

Every list I make for this comes back to the issue of needing a real source of draw that's stronger than Underworld Connections and all of the :B: ones require an excess of lifegain to avoid getting ruined by aggro. Lili's thinning capacity is good for this, but I keep coming back to using Veilborn Ghoul as a dredging engine- which probably isn't where Niche wants to be.

@B_F-
Pack Rat with discard to haze out disruption is actually pretty solid- furthermore most opponents would do better to board out most removal in favor of more sources of card advantage, bending the game to a shape where Pack Rat can snowball.
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You're silly for not wanting Olivia here when you're running big Lili. Ping in conjuntion with lili's "minus" ability is incredible for dealing with thragtusk, for clearing the way for a pumped rat, for stealing an opponent's creature with a single land, man do I even need to keep going? If it was just one of those points then meh w/e, but every aspect of both cards interact so well with one another. That said, don't four-of her or anything, but at the very least run a copy or two in the side. 

Why Pillar of Flame? I'd rather see Bonfire of the Damned in every situation except turn 1 or 2. GW aggro is droping loxodon smiter on turn 2, and if you use Pillar to hit their pilgrim, great, but it's still coming turn 3. Geist can't be hit by it. Resto angel and Thragtusk + little brother token don't give a crap about it. You don't have enough oomph in the deck for it to qualify as reach. Bonfire is just bonkers with Lili's ult. 

Anywho, I'm going to talk a friend of mine into playing some games with me today and I'll be using this :

Land : 24
Blood Crypt x 4
Dragonskull Summit x 4 
Mountain x 7
Swamp x 9

Creatures : 5
Pack Rat x 3
Olivia Voldaren x 2

Spells : 28
Appetite for Brains x 2
Bonfire of the Damned x 2
Duress x 3
Dreadbore x 3
Mizzium Mortars x 2
Ultimate Price x 2
Rakdos's Return x 2
Flames of the Firebrand x 2
Rakdos Keyrune x 4
Underworld Connections x 1
Slaughter Games x 3
Staff of Nin x 2

Walkers : 3
Liliana of the Dark Realms x 3

Sideboard : 15
Duress x 1
Pillar of Flame x 3
Pithing Needle x 3
Rakdos Charm x 3
Tribute to Hunger x 2
Underworld Connections x 1 
Sever the Bloodline x 2
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Bonfire is ok... but Pillar is a necessary evil for this deck. It's not a bad card and has relevant legs in many matchups. And I'll gladly murder a mana dork to push smiter back to 3, where I can mortars or dreadbore it comfortably. And pillar kills silverblade paladin pretty well too.

Olivia is a good card. I don't like her for this deck since its creature light. She'll die quickly and unless you play her with 7 mana free aside from her there is no guarantee of value. I can play a rat with 5 mana and cause a lot of trouble. 

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"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

And I'll gladly murder a mana dork



Pillar is soooo tasty against dorks.
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Do Zealous Conscripts have a place in the board?
Sure!

What for? =) 

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Boasts?

2011 States Top 4
Multiple 2013 IQ Top 4/8 Finishes
Designer of Top 8 States finishing MBC decks in 2011, 2010, and 2009 
Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

I had Reanimator (once they start hardcasting stuff) in mind and maybe doing cheeky things with an opponent's Swagtusk. Would probably cut a Mind Rot and either a Needle or Charm for 2 of them. Don't know if it's worth it or win-more though. I also still like Nighthawk in the board for aggro match-ups. He eats removal, but that removal is usually burn that then isn't directed to my face.

The favor of Nighthawk and disappointment in more than 2 Charms comes from my playing Rakdos Aggro though.
Sure!

What for? =) 



Pure trolling power? I mean, who doesn't love having a PW stolen right as it is about to go ultimate. Tongue Out
"I have existed from the morning of the world and I shall exist until the last star falls from the night. Although I have taken the form of Gaius Caligula, I am all men as I am no man and therefore I am a God."
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