The General Magic: The Gathering Thread

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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Matt » 18 Nov 2010, 09:14

how in the hell do you have 3 baneslayers?

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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby octopimpostor » 18 Nov 2010, 09:15

Whats withcanaians and their magic cards!?!?
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Chuckles » 18 Nov 2010, 13:56

Matt wrote:how in the hell do you have 3 baneslayers?

-m


I heard he got James to open his packs for him.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Ayailla » 18 Nov 2010, 14:47

I just bought a starter deck and improved it slightly with some cards I got from a booster. Here's what it has in it so far. Cards other than the lands are linked.

Mountain x 10
Forest x 10
Acid Web Spider
Arc Trail x 2
Asceticism
Barbed Battlegear
Barrage Ogre x 2
Copper Myr x 2
Cudgel Troll
Fireball
Flameborn Hellion x 2
Hoard-Smelter Dragon
Horizon Spellbomb
Iron Myr x 2
Molder Beast x 3
Oxidda Scrapmelter x 2
Panic Spellbomb
Prodigal Pyromancer
Shatter x 2
Sylvok Replica x 3
Trigon of Infestation
Turn to Slag x 2
Untamed Might x 2
Viridian Revel
Vulshok Heartstoker x 2
Vulshok Replica x 3

Like I said, this is basically the Relic Breaker deck with some extra cards added in. Any tips on how I can make it better? I haven't played properly for about 3 years so I have no idea what cards are around nowadays...
Last edited by Ayailla on 19 Nov 2010, 03:28, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Madness Hero » 18 Nov 2010, 15:39

Matt wrote:how in the hell do you have 3 baneslayers?

-m


My friends and I are good about sharing cards for deck building purposes.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby MowDownJoe » 18 Nov 2010, 17:41

You have extremely trusting friends.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Trymantha » 18 Nov 2010, 17:47

Ayailla wrote:I just bought a starter deck and improved it slightly with some cards I got from a booster. Here's what it has in it so far. Cards other than the lands are linked.

Mountain x 20
Forest x 20
Acid Web Spider
Arc Trail x 2
Asceticism
Barbed Battlegear
Barrage Ogre x 2
Copper Myr x 2
Cudgel Troll
Fireball
Flameborn Hellion x 2
Hoard-Smelter Dragon
Horizon Spellbomb
Iron Myr x 2
Molder Beast x 3
Oxidda Scrapmelter x 2
Panic Spellbomb
Prodigal Pyromancer
Shatter x 2
Sylvok Replica x 3
Trigon of Infestation
Turn to Slag x 2
Untamed Might x 2
Viridian Revel
Vulshok Heartstoker x 2
Vulshok Replica x 3

Like I said, this is basically the Relic Breaker deck with some extra cards added in. Any tips on how I can make it better? I haven't played properly for about 3 years so I have no idea what cards are around nowadays...


first big peice of advice i(and neaerly everyone) always give is cut the deck size down to 60 with a split of around 36 nonland and 24 land.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Chuckles » 18 Nov 2010, 18:40

Trymantha wrote:first big peice of advice i(and neaerly everyone) always give is cut the deck size down to 60 with a split of around 36 nonland and 24 land.


Really? My first piece of advice is "Make sure you have the money to back up the habit." Always.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Ayailla » 19 Nov 2010, 03:27

Trymantha wrote:first big peice of advice i(and neaerly everyone) always give is cut the deck size down to 60 with a split of around 36 nonland and 24 land.


The best player I know always only has 20 land... I made a mistake on that post, it's 10 mountain and 10 forest. Don't know why I put 20 for each. I'm gonna go ahead and edit that now...

So yeah, my deck size is 60.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Yaxley » 19 Nov 2010, 06:05

Of course, land count is always going to be dependent on your mana curve and what other mana sources you have. I have a Stompy deck that only runs 10 to 12 lands and it plays fine.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Lyinginbedmon » 19 Nov 2010, 11:55

I've been considering a few cards for my deck which look tremendously promising for adding some much-needed control to it.

First and most impressive is Sword of Body and Mind, a mythic rare from Scars of Mirrodin. It costs 3 to summon and 2 to equip, with the effect that the equipped creature gets +2/+2 with green & blue protection and each time they hit my opponent's life I put a 2/2 green Wolf token into play and they discard the top 10 cards of their deck. I could plant it on top of an unblockable Dimir Infiltrator and ride home.

But the second is a combo of two cards, Nezumi Bone-Reader and Endrek Sahr, Master Breeder.
  • Whenever I play a creature (And with ninjutsu galore, I'll have plenty to, I could practically just cycle Mistblades), Endrek pumps out it's converted mana cost in 1/1 black Thrull tokens, though he suicides if I have 7 out (Presumably they eat him).
  • Whenever I choose to pay 1 black mana and sacrifice a creature, Nezumi Bone-Reader makes my opponent discard a card from their hand.
The combination of the two gives me throttle-able discard capability over my opponent, allowing me to make him discard as much or as little as I need. It fires up to full function around turn 6, with Endrek costing 5 mana and Bone-Reader costing 2.

So in the end, I'm dealing damage to my opponent, forcing them to take away (potentially) a 6th of their deck each time, and making sure they have peanuts to retaliate with, whilst my ninjas lay siege and ensure they don't have much of anything to stop me with either. Not to mention once Ink Eyes comes into play, she'll have plenty to choose from in their graveyard.

Currently deciding if there's anything I should take out for them in my deck to keep the card count down.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Kag » 19 Nov 2010, 18:49

Ninjutsu won't activate Endrek.

Also, see the discussion on "win more" cards further up. Those cards pretty much don't help your deck do what it needs to do at all.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Lyinginbedmon » 19 Nov 2010, 19:04

No no, ninjutsu puts creature cards into my hand, which I can then play to get tokens through Endrek. I can use ninjutsu to bounce my creature cards to my hand, to play them again next turn, netting me tokens. Dimir Infiltrator is a good example, every time I use him for ninjutsu I get to play him again next turn to get 2 tokens. Ideally I'd fit Walker of the Secret Ways into the deck as well but she's just not useful enough.

Ink Eyes alone would murder Endrek the moment I played her if ninjutsu did trigger him.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Kag » 19 Nov 2010, 21:49

Well, that's almost like synergy, except that 90% of the time Endrek is going to be dead-in-hand or a waste of 5 mana because none of the other cards in your deck are worth playing with him.

If you want to make your opponent discard, just play a discard spell. Attaching a bunch of strings to stuff just makes it a bigger target, which is always awful.

On that note: Okiba-Gang Shinobi does exactly that. Maybe a little expensive, though.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Lyinginbedmon » 20 Nov 2010, 06:08

A discard spell would work, yes, but it would then go into my graveyard and I'd need to cast it again, to a max of 4 times. It's a high mana cost (Wit's End is 7 mana for the basic effect) for a low long-term result, because once that spell is done, they can still draw cards until I get another copy of it.

Endrek and Bone-Reader also have a high initial mana cost (7 total), but it's spread out across a few turns since Bone-Reader is just 2 mana by himself, and after that they're very cheap to operate and they let me force discards persistently and reliably and without having to attack like Okiba.

If I end up with Endrek in hand, I can still play him and use my cheap ninja baits like Ornithopter until Nezumi turns up, he's only dead in hand when I have two or more of him in my hand. If all else fails, I can just use the Thrull tokens as cannon fodder and attack my opponent with them, and if my opponent doesn't block one of them, it becomes ninja bait as well (and since tokens taken out of their initial environ cease to exist, dies and saves Endrek potentially).
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Kag » 20 Nov 2010, 06:32

Lyinginbedmon wrote:A discard spell would work, yes, but it would then go into my graveyard and I'd need to cast it again, to a max of 4 times. It's a high mana cost for a low long-term result, because once that spell is done, they can still draw cards until I get another copy of it.


Er, yes, that's how sorceries and instants work. If that's a problem, why are you playing any of those?

Spells also can't be killed before they do anything, by every deck ever built ever. And they can happen in the early game. And it only costs you one card to play them.

If I end up with Endrek in hand, I can still play him and use my cheap ninja baits like Ornithopter until Nezumi turns up, he's only dead in hand when I have two or more of him in my hand.


Which would be a huge waste of mana for almost no effect.

You're suggesting putting in two cards that don't synergize with anything else in the deck, are borderline useless separate, and don't really get you any closer to your win condition. It's kind of silly.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Lyinginbedmon » 20 Nov 2010, 06:51

Interesting how you clipped the rest of the paragraph that describes useful tactics to use Endrek's tokens for...hmm...

I don't want to use Wit's End because it's too much mana for too little long-term effect. That's what I have a problem with, not instants and sorceries in general, just that decent discard spells are too expensive for too little gain.

The Endrek/Bone-Reader combo fires up Turn 6, to play Wit's End (ONCE) I'd need to wait until turn 7. For 7 mana, I could cast 1 Wit's End or I could make my opponent discard up to 7 cards by sacrificing 7 tokens, but my opponent will almost never have that many cards in their hand.

If Endrek comes out before Nezumi, his tokens are useful as ninja bait, cheap damage, and cannon fodder.

If Nezumi comes out before Endrek, he's still useful for sacrificing my useless creatures like Ornithopter and tokens from Sword of Body and Mind.

I agree that they don't fully synergise in this deck, but they contribute very well to the control of the battlefield and my opponent's resources without disharmonising it.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Kag » 20 Nov 2010, 07:16

Lyinginbedmon wrote:Interesting how you clipped the rest of the paragraph that describes useful tactics to use Endrek's tokens for...hmm...


Because that's a red herring. You aren't going to have a meaningful amount of tokens, because your deck Never plays high-cost creatures.

I don't want to use Wit's End because it's too much mana for too little long-term effect. That's what I have a problem with, not instants and sorceries in general, just that decent discard spells are too expensive for too little gain.


What? You need a discard effect that strong so rarely that it isn't even a scenario worth talking about. Hymn to Tourach is an extremely good card, Mind Rot is a pretty good one, Blackmail is great, too.

More importantly: control is vastly more valuable in early turns. If you aren't making your opponent discard until turn 6 or 7, you are doing it all the way wrong.

If Nezumi comes out before Endrek, he's still useful for sacrificing my useless creatures like Ornithopter and tokens from Sword of Body and Mind.


Your entire deck is predicated on HAVING CREATURES! Making your opponent drop one card is never going to be better than having an Ornithopter on the board.

Consider that Endrek is a 2/2 for 5 mana. That's kind of a huge risk. If you're going to play him, don't you think you need a better reason than that?
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Lyinginbedmon » 20 Nov 2010, 07:26

My deck is predicated on having UNBLOCKED creatures, a prospect that becomes more difficult as the match wears on.

Ornithopter is good for early turns but then quickly becomes less useful, unlike Dimir Infiltrator which is 2 mana for a 1/3 unblockable with an optional search effect. Once Dimir Infiltrator is regularly showing up (which via Dimir Aqueduct is by tapping just 1 land), Ornithopter can be sacrificed, and Infiltrator nets me 2 tokens cheaply as well.

Ninjutsu isn't used to obviate playing big cards, it's used to play big cards earlier. Once mid-game hits, I need to start controlling my opponent's resources by more than just unblockable ninjas to ensure they don't pull something to cripple my ninjas which, by themselves, are not very powerful.

Arrest and Pacifism are two cards that, played later in the game such as on Ink Eyes, can really hurt this deck and which could be waiting in their hand all the way up to then.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Kag » 20 Nov 2010, 07:57

Lyinginbedmon wrote:Once mid-game hits, I need to start controlling my opponent's resources by more than just unblockable ninjas to ensure they don't pull something to cripple my ninjas which, by themselves, are not very powerful.


Sure, but you already solve that problem by having Mana Leak, Last Gasp, and Repeal in the deck.

Even if you hadn't, there's a knee-high stack of cards that will do the same job, better, and make better use of of the tools you already have.


Arrest and Pacifism are two cards that, played later in the game such as on Ink Eyes, can really hurt this deck and which could be waiting in their hand all the way up to then.


Drop repeal for Boomerang or Echoing Truth, or add Walker of Secret Ways. Problem solved.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Lyinginbedmon » 20 Nov 2010, 09:08

Agreed, Echoing Truth replacing Repeal now, because it's cheaper and takes everything with the same name too. I may add a couple of Walkers, but I don't think they're effective enough to warrant a full 4 (The deck is already at 69 cards, not sure I want to push it too far past).

Most of the cards are around 3 mana, so the curve is actually pretty good, and nearly a third of the deck is lands at 22 cards.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby ecocd » 21 Nov 2010, 19:55

On the life gain deck, if you feel you can really pump the life gain and your casual circle doesn't mind some older cards, Test of Endurance is a white enchantment that you win if you have over 50 life. It should cost a relative pittance for a rare. Something that may not be as cheap is Lightning Helix - that could be too good for your playgroup. In general, creatures that gain life as they come into play server double duty. Radiant's Dragoons is the classic example.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Lyinginbedmon » 22 Nov 2010, 12:09

Okay, so, my final deck design (and my only one ever, by decree for my own safety in fact) is as follows:

4x Throat Slitter
4x Ornithopter
4x Ninja of the Deep Hours
4x Nezumi Bone-Reader
4x Mistblade Shinobi
4x Higure, the Still Wind
4x Endrek Sahr, Master Breeder
4x Dimir Infiltrator
1x Ink Eyes, Servant of Oni

4x Mana Leak
4x Echoing Truth
4x Agony Warp

1x Sword of Body and Mind

7x Swamp
6x Island
4x Waterveil Cavern
4x Dimir Aqueduct
1x Academy Ruins

Total:
33 creatures
12 spells
22 land
1 artifact

Card total: 68
Playable/Land ratio: 23-11 (Roughly 2-1)
Mana curve: 2.97 (137 converted mana cost total, 46 non-Land cards)

Since I have them to hand (I.e. I don't need to buy them) I think a couple Walkers of the Secret Way and That Which Was Taken will go in the sideboard. Adding all 3 straight in alters the mana curve to 3.21 and shifts the P/L ratio to 49-22 (roughly 2-1 still), so not that big but considering both housemates are playing with decks nearing 100 cards I'm keeping things slim.
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Xiryc » 22 Nov 2010, 20:29

So I was bored, and decided to throw out a Proliferate decklist. It seems awful, but fun:

4 Grindclock
4 Voltaic Key
4 Temple Bell
3 Lux Cannon

4 Steady Progress
2 Inexorable Tide
4 Contagion Clasp
2 Contagion Engine

4 Everflowing Chalice
2 All is Dust
3 Aether Tradewinds

4 Halimar Depths
4 Tectonic Edge
4 Mystifying Maze
4 Scalding Tarn
8 Island
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Re: Magic: The Gathering: Whatcha mean, there's no thread yet?

Postby Kag » 23 Nov 2010, 10:56

Lying, I think after testing you'll probably find that 4 Higure is too much. My intuition says 2, but test it.

As for the discard, Ravenous Rats was the weapon of choice when Kamigawa was in standard (not that U/B ninjas was ever big, but you know). I'm not sure if there's anything strictly better. Bloodhusk Ritualist looks promising. Liliana's specter is Ravenous Rats with evasion, but costs 1BB, which is bad for multicolor. Thieving Sprite is almost the same for 2B.

Xiryc, I feel like straight weenie or burn would be absolutely horrible matchups for that. I'm not really sure what to do about it, though.

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