[Archetype] - U/R Seismic Swans

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Blue-Red Seismic Swans




IMAGE(http://img106.imageshack.us/img106/1175/sawns.jpg)




"Some say the world will end in fire, some say in ice. From what I've tasted of desire I hold with those who favor fire. But if the world should perish twice, I think I know enough of hate, to say that for destruction, ice is also great, and would suffice."
-- Robert Frost


IMAGE(http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee215/Hodoku/UR.gif)

Introduction




This thread is an updated version of the original thread found here. I'm currently in the process of updating and modifying, basically giving it a complete facelift. As I am very busy, this process may take awhile, please bear with it.

What is U/R Seismic Swans?
Its a deck idea that was created to try and beat most of the top standard decks around. (Ok, mainly Faeries and 5CC)
A variant of the original U/R CounterBurn Deck, Seismic Swans is an incredibly complex control deck that seeks to win all of its games by burying its opponent in card advantage. Yes, it wins many games by simply out-drawing its opponent.


Origin
The original idea came about from the U/R CounterBurn strategy of Countering and Burning away threats to completely cripple the opponents' deck, while winning with various finishers. It later evolved when some people played a list on Magic Online exploiting the Seismic Swans Combo, to much success. This build then became the most popular and highly played. The deck's success rippled through the Japanese community, and a number of the players from that country played the deck in Pro Tour Kyoto. Shuhei Nakamura, a player of respected caliber piloted in Kyoto to a Top 32 finish.


So how does it work?
The basic premise is simple: spend the first few turns countering spells and sweeping the board when necessary. As you amass mana, you can play Swans of Bryn Argoll and begin drawing an insane number of cards. Every time you play a sweeper spell, you will not only clear the air for your 4/3 flier to beat in, but also draw two cards (or more). The play style is mainly "Draw-Go" since counters and most burn are instants. Basically you do whatever you can to stall your opponent until you win using the combo or aggro them to death with Swans and/or other creatures (including man-lands) OR a combination of the above. Fun Right?!

Detailed Descriptions on How to Play


Method of Playing
This section describes in great detail how to pilot the deck to victory, as well as the many play mistake committed by players. Piloting skills are very crucial if you want to win with this deck. And this section has been requested by many members in the previous thread.

I meant to do a more detailed one, but that will take time. Meanwhile, you can read this little paragraph, courtesy or our good friend sisomic. ^_^
sisomic;18035547 wrote:
...

U/R is a bad match-up for every deck except Fae. (BB is really good.) But even that match-up is only like 45-55 at its worse.


ADVICE TO ALL: If you are going to play this deck; LEARN IT, PRACTICE IT, LOVE IT. If you do not have every card and quantity memorized in the deck and can't recite them forward, backward, and alphabetically, you have not practiced enough with this deck. It is way too complicated to just "pick up" or "throw together" like I keep seeing some of you say. I know that a lot of people want to try this out because it has actually seen some competitive play, but its not like the other tourney decks. Keep this in mind when you are playing this deck. If you lose, don't say, "This deck is bad against
































































































































4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Cascade+Bluffs" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Cascade+Bluffs">Cascade Bluffs</a>
6 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Island" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Island">Island</a>
6 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Mountain" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Mountain">Mountain</a>
2 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Faerie+Conclave" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Faerie+Conclave">Faerie Conclave</a>
4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Shivan+Reef" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Shivan+Reef">Shivan Reef</a>


3 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Dominus+of+Fealty" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Dominus+of+Fealty">Dominus of Fealty</a>
3 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Vendilion+Clique" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Vendilion+Clique">Vendilion Clique</a>


4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Goblin+Assault" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Goblin+Assault">Goblin Assault</a>
4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Cancel" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Cancel">Cancel</a>
4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Dream+Fracture" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Dream+Fracture">Dream Fracture</a>
4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Pyroclasm" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Pyroclasm">Pyroclasm</a>
4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Incinerate" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Incinerate">Incinerate</a>
4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Puncture+Blast" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Puncture+Blast">Puncture Blast</a>
3 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Broken+Ambitions" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Broken+Ambitions">Broken Ambitions</a>
3 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Negate" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Negate">Negate</a>
2 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Jace+Beleren" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Jace+Beleren">Jace Beleren</a>



3 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Remove+Soul" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Remove+Soul">Remove Soul</a>
4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Relic+of+Progenitus" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Relic+of+Progenitus">Relic of Progenitus</a>
4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Flashfreeze" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Flashfreeze">Flashfreeze</a>
4 x <a href="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Dragon%27s+Claw" class="autocard-link" data-image-url="http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?type=card&amp;name=Dragon%27s+Claw">Dragon's Claw</a>



[/deck]

If for some reason, you want to see more of the old builds as well as those contributed by other users, you can find the old thread here: http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=1119540



My Decklists

Decklists Created by Me. Or Decklists which I am currently testing.

[deck= U/R Seismic Swans
By: AzureKn1ght]

Lands
1 *Ghitu Encampment
3 *Mutavault
2 *Vivid Creek
1 *Reliquary Tower
1 *Mountain
3 *Island
3 *Shivan Reef
4 *Cascade Bluffs
4 *Reflecting Pool
4 *Crumbling Necropolis


Creatures
3 *Plumeveil
3 *Swans of Bryn Argoll
2 *Razormane Masticore
(Testing the Masticores MD. Hopefully it will work well with Swans)


Other Spells
3 *Broken Ambitions
4 *Cryptic Command
3 *Incinerate
3 *Jace Beleren
2 *Negate
4 *Pyroclasm
2 *Remove Soul
2 *Seismic Assault
3 *Volcanic Fallout

[deck=Sideboard]
2 *Banefire
3 *Glen Elendra Archmage
2 *Sower of Temptation
2 *Negate
2 *Pithing Needle
1 *Plumeveil
2 *Evacuation
1 *Volcanic Fallout

[/deck]


[/deck]


[deck=UBR Grixis Control
By: AzureKn1ght]
With the success of the Swans control deck, I decided that it might be worth to add black to the deck, and form a Grixis control deck. Many of the deck's main features are derived from the Seismic Swans deck. Although this deck is not exactly a Seismic Swans deck (no swans at all!), this deck uses generally the same strategy, playing heavy countrol and card advantage engines. The only difference here is that the win-con has been changed to Demigod which when played in multiples, can be quite devastating.

-Land-
4* Crumbling Necropolis
4* Reflecting Pool
4* Cascade Bluffs
4* Sunken Ruins
3* Vivid Creek
3* Island
3* Mountain


-Creatures-
4* Demigod of Revenge
3* Plumeveil
2* Wydwen, the Biting Gale


-Other Spells-
4* Broken Ambitions
2* Remove Soul
2* Negate
4* Cryptic Command
4* Jace Beleren
2* Tidings
1* Banefire
2* Cruel Ultimatum
4* Volcanic Fallout



[deck=Sideboard]
3* Pithing Needle
3* Terror
3* Infest
2* Guttural Response
2* Negate
1* Banefire
1* Plumeveil

[/deck]


[/deck]






Tournament Decklists

Found another successful decklist that made Top 8? Send me the link! I'll update it here.


2009 Regionals




[Deck= Parth Modi
Standard - 3rd Place, Chicago, IL Regionals]

4 *Cascade Bluffs
4 *Fire-Lit Thicket
4 *Ghitu Encampment
4 *Graven Cairns
1 *Mountain
1 *Mutavault
4 *Reflecting Pool
4 *Rugged Prairie
4 *Spinerock Knoll
4 *Treetop Village
4 *Vivid Crag
4 *Vivid Marsh
42 lands


4 *Bloodbraid Elf
4 *Swans of Bryn Argoll
8 creatures


2 *Ad Nauseam
4 *Bituminous Blast
4 *Seismic Assault
10 other spells

[deck=Sideboard]

1 *Ad Nauseam
2 *Ajani Vengeant
2 *Aura of Silence
1 *Maelstrom Pulse
4 *Qasali Pridemage
3 *Vexing Shusher
2 *Volcanic Fallout
15 sideboard cards


[/deck]

This decklist is not your standard U/R build, it doesn't play any control or CA spells. Instead, he chose to take advantage of the cascade mechanic, and Ad Nauseam, to quickly get out all the combo pieces. Then end the game by burning the opponent to death. This is an interesting build, really worth considering. This could be the direction where the Swans deck is heading.

[/deck]






Pro Tour-Kyoto Decklists



AzureKn1ght;18003671 wrote:
Among the players who decided to run the swans build, one of them in particular deserves special mention. And that is Shuhei Nakamura. If you don't know who he is, you might have been living under a rock. He is one helluva good player. Probably one of the best players around.

Shuhei Nakamura U/R Swans:




[deck=Shuhei Nakamura - U/R Swans
Pro Tour-Kyoto, Standard]


Main Deck

60 cards

4 *Cascade Bluffs
4 *Crumbling Necropolis
1 *Ghitu Encampment
5 *Island
1 *Mountain
3 *Mutavault
4 *Reflecting Pool
4 *Shivan Reef
26 lands


3 *Plumeveil
3 *Swans of Bryn Argoll
6 creatures


3 *Broken Ambitions
4 *Cryptic Command
2 *Incinerate
4 *Jace Beleren
2 *Negate
4 *Pyroclasm
2 *Remove Soul
2 *Seismic Assault
2 *Tidings
3 *Volcanic Fallout
28 other spells


[deck=Sideboard]

2 *Banefire
2 *Glen Elendra Archmage
4 *Goblin Assault
1 *Incendiary Command
1 *Negate
1 *Pithing Needle
1 *Plumeveil
2 *Swerve
1 *Volcanic Fallout
15 sideboard cards

[/deck]

Taken From: http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/eventcoverage/ptkyo09/topslist

[/deck]

Magic Online Decklists



Magic Online Premier Event Top 8 Decklists





[deck=YYsapporo - 1st Place
Standard Event #192780 on 02/12/2009]

Main Deck

60 cards
4 *Cascade Bluffs
4 *Crumbling Necropolis
2 *Ghitu Encampment
5 *Island
4 *Mutavault
4 *Reflecting Pool
4 *Shivan Reef
27 lands


1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Swans of Bryn Argoll
5 creatures

3 *Broken Ambitions
4 *Cryptic Command
4 *Incinerate
3 *Jace Beleren
2 *Magma Spray
2 *Negate
1 *Pithing Needle
4 *Pyroclasm
3 *Remove Soul
2 *Seismic Assault
28 other spells


[deck=Sideboard]

3 *Flashfreeze
3 *Guttural Response
3 *Sower of Temptation
2 *Swerve
4 *Vithian Stinger
15 sideboard cards
[/deck]

Taken from: http://www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/events.aspx?x=mtg/daily/decks/mol192780

I guess this is the most successful build by far, I'm just puzzled by the single Pithing Needle?
Of course, there are a few others that made top 8 as well. I decided to specially mention this because he made it to 1st place! Congratz YYsapporo! He has been constantly playing U/R CounterBurn on Magic Online and his Seismic Swans build has seen much success lately. If you check the link, you'll realize that he had beaten many 5 color control builds to the top spot this proves our superiority. I really wish he could post some of his experiences and match up details here so that we can further develop the deck.

Good Luck in your future matches YYsapporo! Keep up the good work! :D

[/deck]



[deck=Ysapporo - 4th Place
Standard Event #176871 on 01/29/2009]

60 cards

4 *Cascade Bluffs
4 *Crumbling Necropolis
2 *Ghitu Encampment
5 *Island
4 *Mutavault
4 *Reflecting Pool
4 *Shivan Reef
27 lands


1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Swans of Bryn Argoll
1 *Vendilion Clique
6 creatures


3 *Broken Ambitions
4 *Cryptic Command
4 *Incinerate
3 *Jace Beleren
2 *Negate
2 *Puncture Blast
4 *Pyroclasm
3 *Remove Soul
2 *Seismic Assault
27 other spells


[deck=Sideboard]
3 *Flashfreeze
3 *Guttural Response
1 *Pithing Needle
4 *Sower of Temptation
4 *Vithian Stinger
15 sideboard cards
[/deck]

Taken from: http://www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/events.aspx?x=mtg/daily/decks/mol176871
[/deck]


[deck=Bard_Taliesin - 4th Place
Standard Event #168796 on 01/28/2009]

60 cards

4 *Cascade Bluffs
4 *Crumbling Necropolis
5 *Island
2 *Mountain
4 *Mutavault
4 *Reflecting Pool
4 *Shivan Reef
27 lands


1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Swans of Bryn Argoll
5 creatures


3 *Broken Ambitions
4 *Cryptic Command
4 *Incinerate
3 *Jace Beleren
2 *Magma Spray
2 *Negate
4 *Pyroclasm
3 *Remove Soul
2 *Seismic Assault
1 *Tidings
28 other spells


[deck=Sideboard]
3 *Flashfreeze
3 *Guttural Response
1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Sower of Temptation
4 *Vithian Stinger
15 sideboard cards
[/deck]

Taken From: http://www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/events.aspx?x=mtg/daily/decks/mol168796

[/deck]

[deck=YYsapporo - 2nd Place
Standard Event #168796 on 01/28/2009]

60 cards

4 *Cascade Bluffs
4 *Crumbling Necropolis
2 *Ghitu Encampment
5 *Island
4 *Mutavault
4 *Reflecting Pool
4 *Shivan Reef
27 lands


1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Swans of Bryn Argoll
3 *Vendilion Clique
8 creatures


3 *Broken Ambitions
4 *Cryptic Command
4 *Incinerate
3 *Jace Beleren
2 *Negate
4 *Pyroclasm
3 *Remove Soul
2 *Seismic Assault
25 other spells


[deck=Sideboard]
3 *Flashfreeze
3 *Guttural Response
1 *Pithing Needle
4 *Sower of Temptation
4 *Vithian Stinger
15 sideboard cards
[/deck]

Taken from: http://www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/events.aspx?x=mtg/daily/decks/mol168796
[/deck]



[deck=YYsapporo - 2nd Place
Standard 24-18-12-12-6-6-6-6 Event #154403 on 01/11/2009]


Lands
4 *Cascade Bluffs
4 *Crumbling Necropolis
5 *Island
2 *Mountain
4 *Mutavault
4 *Reflecting Pool
4 *Shivan Reef
27 lands


Creatures
1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Swans of Bryn Argoll
5 creatures


Spells
3 *Broken Ambitions
4 *Cryptic Command
4 *Incinerate
2 *Jace Beleren
2 *Magma Spray
2 *Negate
4 *Pyroclasm
3 *Remove Soul
2 *Seismic Assault
2 *Tidings
28 other spells

[deck=Sideboard]
3 *Guttural Response
1 *Jace Beleren
1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Sower of Temptation
2 *Swerve
4 *Vithian Stinger
15 sideboard cards
[/deck]

Taken from: http://www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/events.aspx?x=mtg/daily/decks/mol154403

[/deck]

[deck=YYsapporo - 3rd Place
Standard Event #154405 on 01/12/2009][/SIZE]

Lands
4 *Cascade Bluffs
4 *Crumbling Necropolis
5 *Island
2 *Mountain
4 *Mutavault
4 *Reflecting Pool
4 *Shivan Reef
27 lands


Creatures
1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Swans of Bryn Argoll
5 creatures


Spells
3 *Broken Ambitions
4 *Cryptic Command
4 *Incinerate
3 *Jace Beleren
2 *Magma Spray
2 *Negate
4 *Pyroclasm
3 *Remove Soul
2 *Seismic Assault
1 *Tidings
28 other spells

[deck=Sideboard]
3 *Flashfreeze
3 *Guttural Response
1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Sower of Temptation
4 *Vithian Stinger
15 sideboard cards
[/deck]

Taken from: http://www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/events.aspx?x=mtg/daily/decks/mol154405

YYsapporo tweaked his original list abit, deciding on a 3rd Jace and cutting the 2nd Tidings ( a good choice imo ), he also changed his SB, adding Flashfreeze in place of Swerve allowing him to have answers to more threats. I really like his decklists. YYsapporo whoever you are, your input on this forum would be greatly appreciated!


[/deck]



[deck=duotianshi203 - 8th Place
Standard Event #160682 on 01/18/2009]


Lands
4 *Cascade Bluffs
4 *Crumbling Necropolis
5 *Island
2 *Mountain
4 *Mutavault
4 *Reflecting Pool
4 *Shivan Reef
27 lands


Creatures
1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Swans of Bryn Argoll
5 creatures


Spells
3 *Broken Ambitions
4 *Cryptic Command
4 *Incinerate
2 *Jace Beleren
2 *Magma Spray
2 *Negate
4 *Pyroclasm
3 *Remove Soul
2 *Seismic Assault
2 *Tidings
28 other spells

[deck=Sideboard]
3 *Guttural Response
1 *Jace Beleren
1 *Oona, Queen of the Fae
4 *Sower of Temptation
2 *Swerve
4 *Vithian Stinger
15 sideboard cards
[/deck]

Taken from: http://www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/events.aspx?x=mtg/daily/decks/mol160682

Notice that this guy decided to run the exact same list as the one YYsapporo used on 01/11/2009. Maybe this build is more popular or more successful?

[/deck]







Other Builds

Decent Decklists submitted by other users.


[Deck=Seismic Swans - By Veji]


3 Plumeveil
3 Swans of Bryn Argoll
-------------------------
6 Creatures

4 Cryptic Command
3 Broken Ambitions
2 Remove Soul
2 Negate
----------------------
11 Counterspells

4 Pyroclasm
2 Magma Spray
2 Incinerate
2 Seismic Assault
1 Volcanic Fallout
---------------------
11 Burn

3 Jace Beleren
2 Tidings
-----------------
5 Draw

4 Crumbling Necropolis
4 Shivan Reef
4 Cascade Bluffs
4 Reflecting Pool
4 Mutavault
2 Ghitu Encampment
4 Island
1 Mountain
-------------------------
27 Land

[deck=Sideboard]
2 Volcanic Fallout
2 Guttural Response
2 Swerve
2 Vendilion Clique
2 Sower of Temptation
2 Glen Elendra Archmage
1 Banefire
1 Pithing Needle
1 Ingot Chewer
---------------------------
15 Sideboard Cards
[/deck]


[/deck]



Contribute Your Decklists!





IMAGE(http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee215/Hodoku/UR.gif)

IMAGE(http://wiki.mtgsalvation.com/images/thumb/0/05/Chandra.jpg/424px-Chandra.jpg)

IMAGE(http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee215/Hodoku/UR.gif)

MATCH UPS



Match Ups

Please note that the statistical numbers are only rough estimates derived from my playtesting, and the actual game match up can vary due to many factors. However, this can be use as a rough guide on how to play against the different decks.

Faeries - 60/40
While I can't say how entirely accurate it is to say that this match-up is always going to be 60/40 in the favor of Swans, that was the way it appeared to be after a good deal of testing. The Faerie player can usually win the average game as long as he gets a strong hand and a turn two Bitterblossom, but there are so many hands with Swans that just beat Faeries that it is truly a wonder why no one played this deck sooner. Volcanic Fallout as well as Pyroclasm help to keep the Fae player's board empty most of the time, and Plumeveil holds off any trouble-makers. Once again, resolving a Seismic Assault makes it almost impossible for them to beat you.


RW Lark (aka Boat Brew) - 65/35
RW Lark is generally the deck you want to play against when piloting Swans. With no way to make its men bigger than x/2, you're going to always get the most out of your sweepers. Your counterspells make up for what Pyroclasm and company won't kill. Post SB, Pithing Needle really shuts down Figure of Destiny, Siege-Gang Commander, Windbrisk Heights, and Ajani Vengeant. A pretty easy match-up overall, which is good considering the popularity of RW.


B/W Tokens - 55/45
This match-up is mostly in your favor (and thus might actually be higher than 55/45), but the success that Swans has against B/W is directly related to whether or not the Tokens player resolves a Glorious Anthem effect or not. Just like against Boat Brew, your sweepers will be able to clear the opponent's board while also gaining you card advantage. The plan of countering threats and periodically clearing the board works fine 90% of the time, but sometimes they will sneak a second Glorious Anthem into play and then you find your sweepers to be nearly useless. If the B/W player can make his tokens bigger than x/2, you've probably lost. Seismic Assault can help to bail you out of this situation by giving you more ammunition to pick off the stragglers, but generally it means game over. If they have Thoughtseize, expect a slight improvement in their deck performance against Swans. The good news is that Swans is innately resilient to Head Games, since they likely won't want to fill your hand with lands. It's still bad for you since they will give you the least useful cards at any given time, but it's a far cry from what happens to a Five Color player.


Five Color Control - 50/50 (possibly more)
In this match-up, you want to be as aggressive as you can whilst also out-drawing them. It's difficult to strike a proper balance for this, but the ideal way to do it is to drop a Goblin Assault and allow it to act as a pseudo-Bitterblossom that will endlessly apply pressure without costing you any mana investment. Glen Elendra Archmage can help you go toe-to-toe with Cruel Ultimatum and also to win you counter wars. The match-up with Five Color is generally even. You may draw more cards than they will, but the card quality overall in their deck is better. If you can stick a Seismic Assault, you should usually win. They might have Runed Halo, though, so be sure to hold a Cryptic Command back when you have enough lands for lethal.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Match Up Details from previous thread.




Faeries:
Quite a favourable match up. You have Negate, Broken Ambitions and a whole suite of counterspells for their Bitterblossom. If they do pull it off later in the game, you play a Goblin Assault to pressure them (they can trade with me forever, but lose a life a turn). You could have some Guttural Response SB to beat the counter war. In this matchup, use V. Clique to take mistbind, or remove soul it.
Aim all burn spells at them until BB bleeds them to death? If all else fails, pyroclasm them when the numbers are up. All of their control against creatures is virtually useless as you have so few creatures. Demigods will wreck them too

Builds that splash a little green mana base can SB Naturalize or something?



Demigod/Red Deck Wins:
This match up relies on the draw quite a bit. If you can set up with your control early enough, it shouldn’t be too much of a problem, follow up with pyroclasm/firespout for their smaller creatures. If they pull out several Demigod of revenge in Game 1, theres really nothing you can do.
You definitely wanna Side in Faerie Macabre/Relic of Progenitus and Flashfreeze.


Theleetnoob;17649545 wrote:
Hi, I've done 6-0 to my FNM Today and wanted to hear your thoughts about my list. I find it pretty fun to play, consistent and have enough win-cons to switch for control to aggro in the space of 1 turn. Heres my list and my MU

Game 1 : Elf Ball - Vithian Stinger out of the board kills this decks 2-0
Game 2 : Red Deck Wins - 2-0
Game 3 : Naya Agro - 2-0
Game 4 : Goblin Warriors - 2-0
Game 5 : Blightning Red - 2-1
Game 6 : Jund Ramp - 2-0

Kithkin/White Weenie:
This match up could prove to be problematic. The important factor in this matchup is the early game. If you allow them to get a few early hits in, it’s not hard for them to surprise you with a Mirrorweave or Ajani Goldmane to take you down. Spectral Procession will be a thorn in your side to deal with. Pyroclasm combined with other burn spells can go a long way in this matchup. Also, Vendilion Clique can flash in when they attack, it can trade and get rid of their Cloudgoat or something. Post-board, they get forge-tenders, but we have options, too. Everlasting Torment neuters them, and Magma Spray seems good to hit a T1 figure.


5 Color Control:
This matchup is typically favourable, all of their control against creatures is virtually useless as you have so few. Puncture Blast away their Finks. Just make sure you have your counters up for their Cruel Ultimatum. Post SB Fulminator Mage or Memory Plunder will prove useful. Resolve a Jace and the Card Advantage should overwhelm them. They typically die to your planeswalkers... So have your Jace and Chandra stick around.

Reveillark Control:
This match up should be fairly easy for you. You just need to keep your counters up for any of their threats. Revaillark should never resolve and neither should Makeshift Mannequin. Shriekmaw does nothing to you. Demigod should more or less win you the game. Same as against RDW, you definitely wanna Side in Faerie Macabre/Relic of Progenitus.

Lemme know how your testing goes. I'd really like to hear it, and update the match ups here.



IMAGE(http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee215/Hodoku/UR.gif)

CREDITS


IMAGE(http://www.wizards.com/mtg/images/daily/features/11_FactorFiction.jpg)






Credits


To Hodoku for the awesome dividers
To neruka for coming up with the banner
To WotC and the respective artist for the artwork.
To Chris Jobin from http://mtgsalvation.com/996-thirst-for-knowledge-for-the-birds.html for a very informative article.
To All of you who have contributed your ideas and Decklists

THANKS!


IMAGE(http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee215/Hodoku/UR.gif)



Well, thats all for U/R Swans. I really hope people can take it to some competitive tournaments, or just have fun with the deck. I would really appreciate if anyone could give me some opinion or suggestions on this deck. Send me your versions! I'll really like to see it, and we can all critique. Also, I'm looking for a really good banner. I hope any of you who are more artistic can help me out.


Note: I'm quite busy these days, so I may take awhile to reply, but any comments and suggestions are most welcomed.

THANKS! :D
I am Blue/Black
Good luck at Regionals fellow Swans players!!!


Detailed Metagame Breakdown



Here is all the match ups for the different Archetypes in Standard. (At least the most common ones) Note that this list was taken from Pro-Tour Kyoto, and may be subject to change, nothing is set in stone afterall. I'd just decided to put it up here to help everyone in their deck building, particularly the construction of a suitable SB for the current meta-game.

IMAGE(http://www.wizards.com/mtg/images/daily/features/29_chart.jpg)



I hope this goes a long way to helping everyone with their deck building! :D
I am Blue/Black

Detailed Swans Match Up Statistics
(Taken From Pro-Tour Kyoto)



Here are the match up statistics for U/R Swans. Please note that this table is constructed using data from Pro-Tour Kyoto alone. Therefore, this table may not be very accurate. As you can see, the number of matches is relatively small, and this can make the data less accurate.

IMAGE(http://img516.imageshack.us/img516/8199/swanstable.png)




I hope this table can help you better understand how this deck fairs against the respective match ups, as well as to aid you in constructing your deck as well as preparing a SB that will even out tougher match ups. Good Luck!
I am Blue/Black
you spelled archtype wrong?
you spelled archtype wrong?

EDIT, EDIT:
Its archetype, with an "r". :D

FIXED
I am Blue/Black
Um.. I don't think so... If I'm not wrong, its spelled Achetype. With the 'E'.

???

I'll do some Googling to see.

Its archetype, with an "r". :D
Here's the deck I won an FNM with 5-0
took on fae, 2x5cc, a kithkin, and a boat brew

Creatures: 7

4 swans of bryn argoll
3 plumeveil

Counterspell: 16
3 negate
4 broken ambition
1 remove soul
4 cancel
4 cryptic command

Other spells: 12
1 swerve (helps against counter wars)
1 volcanic fallout
2 seismic assault
4 jace beleren
4 pyroclasm

Land: 25
4 crumbling necropolis
4 shivan reefs
4 cascade bluffs
3 ghitu encampment
7 islands
3 mountains

sideboard: 15
3 swerve
2 relic of progenitus
1 remove soul
4 flashfreeze
3 volcanic fallout
2 gutteral response

I think the hardest deck to play against was RDW, I dedicated a lot of sideboard to RDW. Cancel is actually VERY good, late game hard counters are always a plus. I out controlled a 5cc deck twice through sheer counters once sideboard hits (think up to 22)
Against Rdw the Wall of reverence is a great choice
Banner?

Here's something. Use it if you like.

IMAGE(http://i595.photobucket.com/albums/tt39/nerukaaa/Other/SwansBanner.png)
Banner?

Here's something. Use it if you like.

IMAGE(http://i595.photobucket.com/albums/tt39/nerukaaa/Other/SwansBanner.png)

Haha. Neat! Thanks so much. However, it would be nice if the banner included more of the maindeck/sideboard cards. I'll use this banner for the time being though.

Thanks.:D
I am Blue/Black
I would make that for you, but I dislike cluttered banners. And I need to work now. But you're welcome.
This is like that "Rad Nauseam" deck that BoaB just did, except this is cooler and UR is the best two-color combination ever.

Props to you :]
BTW guys, what do you all think of the Ad Nauseam and Reliquary Tower tech I added to my deck? (See OP)

I got the idea after seeing the BoaB article:
http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/boab/30

I only had to add 2 Vivid Creeks to make it work out, since we already have Reflecting Pools + Crumbling Necropolis. A little black splash seems alright.

I like Ad Nauseam because of its instant speed, as well as its recurrence ability. Imagine if you draw many consecutive lands, they don't cost any life.

Here's how I plan to use it. Play it at opponent's EOT, with Seismic already out. Then keep drawing like crazy. Just stop when your life is very close to 0. Usually around 5 life? Coz nothing in the deck costs more than 5, assuming you are not playing against RDW. Then count the lands in your hand, if it's enough to finish off your opponent, go ahead and fire off! If it's not enough, throw some lands at your swans to get enough! If swans is not out yet, play it during your turn and continue! How fun is that!!

On Second thought, Relinquary Tower doesn't seem that important :P Oops. But I just thought that having like 10+ cards in hand can easily scare of any opponent. Haha!
I am Blue/Black
I thought Reliquary Tower would be boss, but I'm worried about the manabase a little since 3 Plumeveils wants color-producing lands. ;P So I dunno if even 1 would hurt me.

Ad Nauseum seems decent, though. I might be persuaded to run even more land if I ran Ad Nauseum. Maybe 28-29? But I suspect I could also just use it as counter-bait. The problem is it does set you up for the counter/bounce Seismic from Cryptic. And it would seem a real hassle to have to wait till you could protect both. But this I cannot say anything about without testing first. This is just speculation. :D
I would consider Ad Nauseum in the side to put in place of Swans in certain matchups. Particularly the mid-range matchups with much creature removal.
I thought Reliquary Tower would be boss, but I'm worried about the manabase a little since 3 Plumeveils wants color-producing lands. ;P So I dunno if even 1 would hurt me.

Ad Nauseum seems decent, though. I might be persuaded to run even more land if I ran Ad Nauseum. Maybe 28-29? But I suspect I could also just use it as counter-bait. The problem is it does set you up for the counter/bounce Seismic from Cryptic. And it would seem a real hassle to have to wait till you could protect both. But this I cannot say anything about without testing first. This is just speculation. :D

1-of Tower isn't that bad. As long as you play all of your other lands first, you should always have the colors you need. Besides, its not like Plumeveil is dropped by turn 3. I don't actually think that having no maximum hand size matter much however. If you think you are going to need to discard next turn, burn their face at EoT or something. It makes a difference less than 1% of the time so there really is no need to even run it. But I just wanted to point out that 1-2 of won't hurt you as much as you think.


My thoughts on Ad Nauseum: Run Cruel instead.
As this is a new thread, I'll post my updated decklist:

2x Remove Soul
4x Cancel
3x Broken Ambitions
2x Negate

2x Tidings
2x Jace Beleren

4x Pyroclasm
3x Incinerate
3x Volcanic Fallout
2x Magma Spray

2x Seismic Assault

4x Swans of Bryn Argoll
3x Plumeveil

2x Ghitu Encampment
4x Cascade Bluffs
4x Shivan Reef
5x Island
5x Mountain
4x Crumbling Necropolis

The Tidings are actually making it work as 2, 3 is too much.
I may add one or two Jace, in place of 1 Incinerate and 1 Swans.
As this is a new thread, I'll post my updated decklist:

2x Remove Soul
4x Cancel
3x Broken Ambitions
2x Negate

2x Tidings
2x Jace Beleren

4x Pyroclasm
3x Incinerate
3x Volcanic Fallout
2x Magma Spray

2x Seismic Assault

4x Swans of Bryn Argoll
3x Plumeveil

2x Ghitu Encampment
4x Cascade Bluffs
4x Shivan Reef
5x Island
5x Mountain
4x Crumbling Necropolis

The Tidings are actually making it work as 2, 3 is too much.
I may add one or two Jace, in place of 1 Incinerate and 1 Swans.

If you are going to play Tidings, instead put in some 2-3 vivids and play Cruel Ultimatum instead. If it resolves it wins you the game.


For the name, how about Cryptic Swans?
why wouldn't Chandra have a place? even if all you did was drop her and use her -x all on the swans then it would still be 6 CARDS for 5 mana. that seems really good to me. : S
This isn't a Swans deck. I'm sorry to say this, but Swans is just a very minute piece of the deck, a support card.

This is a Landstill deck. You draw lots of cards off Jace Beleren, and attack with Man-lands. You win with this and Seismic Assault. Occasionally, you'll lay a Swans and draw cards and attack for the win, but it's not often, say, 1/4th of the time.
I think it depends on the matchup! Wee
This isn't a Swans deck. I'm sorry to say this, but Swans is just a very minute piece of the deck, a support card.

This is a Landstill deck. You draw lots of cards off Jace Beleren, and attack with Man-lands. You win with this and Seismic Assault. Occasionally, you'll lay a Swans a draw cards and attack for the win, but it's not often, say, 1/4th of the time.

I agree with you 100%! This deck doesn't revolve around Swans, Swans just boosts this deck. This deck revolves around counter-control and burn.

I still think the thread should be called swans, however. It will help people find this thread faster. If only Wizards didn't call the deck "Swans". Because honestly, the decks that were at Kyoto weren't optimal. 4 Jace is something I would never do. Bring in the fourth for control Mirrors, maybe, but not MD. Even if your strat was to just draw 3 cards off of each one, its not the correct play.

Anyways, leave the thread name as Swans something. Or just Swans would work. We all call our decks something else anyways. I am using Pyro's name, ColdFire, because it just sounds much better than "CounterBurn" and not as plain as "Swans".
I feel running 3 Swans is pretty optimal, too. Four might be a bit much.

I like 4 Jace. I think 3 is all right, too, though. But I don't think this deck has any card draw without Jace or Swans so gotta go with Jace. I'd be pretty sad if I didn't draw any of him during a game. And there's no way to draw cards without him, so.
I've already gone down to 3 Swans. 4 is too much, though against mono-red, it's the one time you will lay it turn 4 with no regrets.

4 Jace isn't really too much, when you aren't running 4 Swans. If you stop drawing cards, you lose. So it's a precaution. 2 Tidings I think is also correct, but I only currently use 1.

One of this deck's worst enemies happens to be opposing Swans. You can draw all the counterspells you want, but that Swans will kill you. Don't let the other player resolve a Swans just so you can draw off it, unless you will then bounce it at end of turn or the like.
Veji would you mind posting your decklist?

what thoughts do you have about cancel in the swan deck?
Veji would you mind posting your decklist?

what thoughts do you have about cancel in the swan deck?

Cancel is decent late game. Better than most counterspells. However, this deck, with its card drawing, doesn't have too much of a problem with the late game. So the problem happens to be the early game. You need cheap counterspells over solid ones. 2-drop counterspell is VERY important to this deck. Broken Ambitions is the number one counterspell turn 2, and helps you filter EVERY TIME. Must run 3 of these. You need about 5 Bitterblossom stoppers, and with 3 Broken Ambitions, you need 2 Negate. Remove Soul is another highly important counterspell, particularly in the Faerie Matchup (Spellstutter Sprite, Mistbind Clique, importantly). You need 2 here as well. That gives you 7. Throw in the 4 Cryptic Commands you MUST have, and you've hit 11 counterspells, which is about the right number for this deck.

Cancel has been a counterspell that really hasn't seen the light of day, and that's because it's just not quite playable. 2 mana anything is SO MUCH better than 3 mana anything, more than any mana discrepancy I can think of.
But in a budget deck, Cancel is the best option to replace Cryptic.

Unless you prefer Counterbore or Discombobulate.
But in a budget deck, Cancel is the best option to replace Cryptic.

Unless you prefer Counterbore or Discombobulate.

This is actually debatable. Some don't see Cryptic as a counterspell. They see it as a utility spell. It does whatever you need it to do. The problem with people saying they need a "budget replacement" is that there really is none. Of course a 3mc counterspell is better than a 4mc one. But Cryptic cannot be consider strictly a counterspell, or else it wouldn't see play.

Cancel would be a fine budget replacement for Cryptic, but just keep in mind that your deck isn't nearly as powerful without Cryptic.
Unfortunately you are right.
Cryptic has 4 uses, all are great.

The 4 uses:

Counter target spell
- Replacement: Cancel
Tap all creatures target opponent controls:
- Best replacement possible: Deluge
Return target permanent to it's owner's hand:
- Replacement: Boomerang
Draw a card:
- Ponder

I replaced it with Cancel because, in my opinion, it's the most practical.
i just dont get this deck. ive played against it a few times online but i dont think it was optimal. i was playing a decnt rdw and just toyed with my opponent while his swan did nothing but giv me endless card advantage and a debate on just how flashy of a kill i could get on him. it was fun! but i kno it has potential so here are my questions.

1. what if someone removes the swans :/ its cute that it cant be damaged but any deck that uses direct damage will just reap tons of card advantage and others will just path it or unmake it away.

2. i see lists with 2 seismic assaults...um in a a sixty card deck ull see mayyyyybe 1 every third game. what if it gets removed?i can beat this deck with a path to exile and a wispmare?

3. so ur supposed to draw lots of land to kill off ur opponent. so ten land basically. seems like a lot of land to luckily draw. jace gives u one card. no mulldrifters in these decks?


4. seems like too few win cons. a removable fatty, a few enchantments? most of the burn will go to killing off threats. what if the opponent plays a gouger or something that cant be killed by a fallout blast? if u need a ton of counters in ur hand at the ready, how do u keep a lot of burn as well?


eh i donno im prolly wrong. i heard theres a lot of swannage at my local fnm so i will see wen i attend there on fri.
i just dont get this deck. ive played against it a few times online but i dont think it was optimal. i was playing a decnt rdw and just toyed with my opponent while his swan did nothing but giv me endless card advantage and a debate on just how flashy of a kill i could get on him. it was fun! but i kno it has potential so here are my questions.

1. what if someone removes the swans :/ its cute that it cant be damaged but any deck that uses direct damage will just reap tons of card advantage and others will just path it or unmake it away.

2. i see lists with 2 seismic assaults...um in a a sixty card deck ull see mayyyyybe 1 every third game. what if it gets removed?i can beat this deck with a path to exile and a wispmare?

3. so ur supposed to draw lots of land to kill off ur opponent. so ten land basically. seems like a lot of land to luckily draw. jace gives u one card. no mulldrifters in these decks?


4. seems like too few win cons. a removable fatty, a few enchantments? most of the burn will go to killing off threats. what if the opponent plays a gouger or something that cant be killed by a fallout blast? if u need a ton of counters in ur hand at the ready, how do u keep a lot of burn as well?


eh i donno im prolly wrong. i heard theres a lot of swannage at my local fnm so i will see wen i attend there on fri.

This shouldn't be a Swans deck. Swans is only need late-game to draw hundreds of cards. It can be dropped against Red, and they will generally not be able to draw cards and kill you, before the Swans wrecks them.
Yeah this is why we need like, a tutorial in the OP or something.

Your possible win conditions are the following:
Manlands
Swans
Seismic
Burn
Mill the opponent (for some matchups I can see this being necessary but very few)

If this STILL seems like too few to you, remember that the card advantage generated by this deck is massive. If it isn't, you probably lose. So your main goal is to draw a crapton of cards. So it doesn't really -matter- if a few of your win conditions are picked off here and there, you draw more. It also helps that this is a control deck, so their plots to foil you will more often than not fail. Runed Halo on Swans? counter or bounce it or kill them some other way; Pithing Needle on Seismic? counter or bounce it or kill them some other way

However Needle on Jace would be super annoying, so I would try to have an answer to Needle in the side
The best answer to Pithing Needle is Ingot Chewer, for two reasons:

1) It's the cheapest answer at R.

2) It's flexible enough to be a 5 for a 3/3 when they don't get their Needle.
i just dont get this deck. ive played against it a few times online but i dont think it was optimal. i was playing a decnt rdw and just toyed with my opponent while his swan did nothing but giv me endless card advantage and a debate on just how flashy of a kill i could get on him. it was fun! but i kno it has potential so here are my questions.

1. what if someone removes the swans :/ its cute that it cant be damaged but any deck that uses direct damage will just reap tons of card advantage and others will just path it or unmake it away.

2. i see lists with 2 seismic assaults...um in a a sixty card deck ull see mayyyyybe 1 every third game. what if it gets removed?i can beat this deck with a path to exile and a wispmare?

3. so ur supposed to draw lots of land to kill off ur opponent. so ten land basically. seems like a lot of land to luckily draw. jace gives u one card. no mulldrifters in these decks?


4. seems like too few win cons. a removable fatty, a few enchantments? most of the burn will go to killing off threats. what if the opponent plays a gouger or something that cant be killed by a fallout blast? if u need a ton of counters in ur hand at the ready, how do u keep a lot of burn as well?


eh i donno im prolly wrong. i heard theres a lot of swannage at my local fnm so i will see wen i attend there on fri.

1. If someone removes the swan, just dig up another. :/
2. If one decides to remove seismic, just blow up in their face in response. There is no way to remove assault without taking a handful of lands at your face. If they have a swans out, they'll just win.
3. No, you don't have to get 10. You have manlands and Swans to get in there to finish the job. Jace gives you a personal howling mine, with the exception of every 3rd card. It is superior to Mulldrifter in this deck because it can draw you any number of cards in a game.
4. You shouldn't care about Gouger. It's just a 4/4. Let it beat you for 4 damage, this is a control deck. Only the last life point counts. The obvious answer to that question is Reliquary Tower.
---The Killers--- ()
This isn't a Swans deck. I'm sorry to say this, but Swans is just a very minute piece of the deck, a support card.

This is a Landstill deck. You draw lots of cards off Jace Beleren, and attack with Man-lands. You win with this and Seismic Assault. Occasionally, you'll lay a Swans and draw cards and attack for the win, but it's not often, say, 1/4th of the time.

Hmm... No, I know it started as just a U/R Control deck. However, it seems that only one type has been played so far (perhaps the most successful?), and thus Swans (this build in particular) claimed the archetype.

So now, the archetype is know as "Swans" as stated in all the mtg coverage articles...

Since I was making a new thread, I thought I should probably make the most updated one, i.e. the one everyone is using: Swans.

Of course, you are free to discuss non-swans builds here if u wish...
I am Blue/Black
You misunderstood his post completely :P

Read it again
You misunderstood his post completely :P

Read it again

Thank you.

I'm trying to tell people that ask "What if your Swans gets removed?" that this isn't a deck based around Swans, so it isn't of the utmost importance to keep the Swans on the board. This deck is Jace Beleren + Seismic Assault + Manlands, with varied counterspells and burn and occasionally, a Swans that will beat down the opponent and draw you hundreds of cards, but only 1/4th of the time if you are playing correctly.
Thank you.

I'm trying to tell people that ask "What if your Swans gets removed?" that this isn't a deck based around Swans, so it isn't of the utmost importance to keep the Swans on the board. This deck is Jace Beleren + Seismic Assault + Manlands, with varied counterspells and burn and occasionally, a Swans that will beat down the opponent and draw you hundreds of cards, but only 1/4th of the time if you are playing correctly.

Ok, I see your point. I just thought everyone knew that already. There are always alternate win conditions. Which is why I decided to splash black for Ad nauseam. Actually Seismic Assault is the key component of this deck. That and the enormous CA engines. Man-Lands come in handy now and then.
I am Blue/Black
Ok, I see your point. I just thought everyone knew that already. There are always alternate win conditions. Which is why I decided to splash black for Ad nauseam. Actually Seismic Assault is the key component of this deck. That and the enormous CA engines. Man-Lands come in handy now and then.

Don't play Ad Nauseam. It will net you 2-3 cards or kill you. If you really want to splash for black, play something insanely stronger.
Don't play Ad Nauseam. It will net you 2-3 cards or kill you. If you really want to splash for black, play something insanely stronger.

I currently still testing ad nauseam. Seems possible with so many lands in the deck. You can't really splash Cruel Ultimatum easily, well its BBB. Then again, it may be possible with insane card draw... Still, the return a creature part doesn't benefit us?
I am Blue/Black
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