2/25/2014 ReConstructed: "Stargazing on a Budget"

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This thread is for discussion of this week's ReConstructed, which goes live Tuesday morning on magicthegathering.com.

This article has me concerned; the author appears to be confused about how Eidalon of Countless Battles works. He says that:

"While Hopeful Eidalon might look a little weak on its own, sitting on the battlefield, it pumps Eidalon of Countless Battles by +2/+2--and that's where the synergy starts to come in!"


"Spirit of the Labyrinth is...an enchantment...meaning it doubles up for Eidalon of Countless Battles."

These statements are, as I understand them, untrue. Eidalon of Countless Battles (or the creature it's enchanting) gains +1/+1 for each creature and each aura you control; it does not get/give +1/+1 for each enchantment. Spirit of the Labyrinth is not an aura, and so it will only provide +1/+1 to the Eidalon of Countless Battles if it is on the field. Hopeful Eidalon likewise will only provide +1/+1 while it is a creature, and also it will only provide +1/+1 while bestowed. When you pay the Bestow cost on a creature and put it on the stack, it becomes an Enchantment--Aura spell (losing the type "creature" in the process). This is extrapolated from the MTG Gatherer ruling where it states "on the stack, a spell with Bestow is either a creature spell or an aura it is never both;"  I bolded that last bit for emphasis.

This is a natural mistake to make, one that I, myself, made when reading the card the first few times, but it will be confusing to new players if this is not corrected. If it is possible, an addition to the article correcting these errors would be nice.



I looked up the total price of this deck if I buy the singles.


It's about $95 on average.


What kind of a budget is that? I can get 3 new blenders for that much money. I can see 15 movies in theatres! I can buy 5 chess sets!


Or I can enter a tournament and attempt to win despite my handicap. I can watch other players play the best decks and adapt to the metagame, while I'm stuck with the same subpar deck week after week because I'm not spending hundreds of dollars weekly to get a metagame edge. Pay to win!


And then next year I can do it again once vital cards like Ethereal Armor rotate out. Good thing my chess set doesn't have an expiration date.


Am I just supposed to spend thousands of dollars a year just to play a fair game? Just to play with different decks like advertised?


Tournament Magic is either a horrifying scam or a sick joke.

Incoming_Wormhole wrote:

I looked up the total price of this deck if I buy the singles.


It's about $95 on average.


What kind of a budget is that? I can get 3 new blenders for that much money. I can see 15 movies in theatres! I can buy 5 chess sets!


If you leave out the dual land base, the deck becomes a much more reasonable budget. The rares in it are worth around $22.00 where I shop, and after commons and uncommons the deck should still be under $30.00, not counting the lands. Investing in dual lands is typically a good choice, but if you haven't the money, it's not vital, particularly in a deck like this one, where the deck is predominantly white. If you add two more Azorious Guildgates, take out the rare dual lands, and added 4 more plains and two more islands, the deck would still function well, and be much cheaper. If you do choose to invest in dual lands, though, I would certainly start with the Temples; they will be in Standard rotation for longer than the "Shocklands" will be, and are much cheaper!



Yeah it seems dumb that if a person submits a deck with a budget manabase on budget week, Gavin will change it, but if they submit a deck without a budget manabase, he won't put in a note saying "by the way if you can't afford dual lands you can play this with basics instead" or something to that effect.


Props for using Stratus Walk, I agree that that card has potential.

I agree with ank.  I know it's not usual to amend an article after it's gone live, even when it's full of typos, however Gavin has the mechanics of Eidolon of Countless Battles wrong.  It's counting auras and creatures, not enchantments and creatures.  The card is awkwardly worded so that no permanent is counted twice.  It's an easy mistake to make.  Let's not perpetuate it.

I played a version of this deck back in November. It was red-white rather than blue-white for Ordeal of Purphoros, Boros Charm, Madcap Skills and Coordinated Assault. But it's otherwise exactly the same idea. (Yes, this is my "I played Hopeful Eidolon before it was cool" claim :P) ReConstructed featured a similar deck too, but Gavin plumped for Akroan Crusader rather than Phalanx Leader. I like Phalanx Leader with Coordinated Assault because your Fabled Heroes can grow absolutely huge - I won one FNM game attacking for 20 with a single creature 


Given the blue here is just for Aqueous Form/Stratus Walk and Ordeal of Thassa, I have to say I think the red-white version is a little better. 

I love the Hold the Gates for Phenax deck. I've considered something similar before, but I hadn't thought of going five-colour Maze's End!

Hey guys!

Thanks for bringing this error to my attention. You're totally right about how Eidolon works - I had indeed misread the card and had it in the same mindspace with Ethereal Armor. I'm sorry about the mix up there!
Normally, I would post corrections to the decklist. However, even with the change, I don't think I would actually modify anything. The deck doesn't rely on that interaction very much, and I even cut the weakest card that would have. (Nyxborn Shieldmate.) So I'd still just play the deck as-is - you can just ignore any lines about enchantment creatures double counting. :)

Hopefully this helps clear things up. Thanks for the feedback, everybody!

STAR WHALE. +10 points to Gavin for slipping that in there.

I like budget week. Nothing more to say there.

It would be nice to have the schedule for this column listed out somewhere, if there is indeed a regular rotation like budget-open-Modern-specific request. (Or something.) I think it would lead to people bringing in better decks--more time to think ahead if so desired--as well as giving some added structure to the column, letting readers know what to expect.

Hi Gavin, just suggesting to add in some kind of note or errata for the issue on Eidolon of Countless Battle, as not everybody reads the forum discussion on the article; I've had a few people asking me whether the article's take on Eidolon of Countless Battle is correct or the Gatherer's entry.

Our trusty editor Mike has gone through and should have fixed all the problem areas. Thanks again for all your help in pointing them out!

Excellent. Thanks Gavin and Mike, we appreciate it. I'm looking forward to the next article. =)

I read the article before and after the change, and I enjoy how the article reads like it's super-excited Eidolon of Countless Battles gets +1/+1 when you put an enchantment creature out :P.


ReConstructed continues to be one of my favorite columns on the site - keep up the great work!

My EDH decks:

Erebos ()

Damia ()

Ghave ()

Sliver Overlord ()

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