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Haze of Pollen
Prevent all combat damage that would be dealt this turn.
Cycling _(, Discard this card: Draw a card.)_
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Haze of Pollen Discussion
5 days ago
I came back to say that I tinkered with my own deck based off what you had put together with the cycling and Archfiend of Ifnir. It's a lot more fun and interactive now! I'd always wanted to fit Archfiend in somehow, and I could never make it work. Taking a step back and approaching from a cycling-first (via Archfiend, Vile Manifestation, and Abandoned Sarcophagus), -1/-1 counters second angle made it all come together very nicely. Now that the deck benefits from cycling cards, protection like Haze of Pollen are life savers. Great job!
Looking at the changes you've made, however, trying to change the deck to a WBG theme just for Angel of Invention and Anointed Procession seems like stretching it too thin (Grind / Dust's Dust can be cast with Channeler Initiate). U/W Gift likes Angel, and a variant of that would certainly enjoy the benefits of Procession, however.
1 week ago
Looks pretty solid, I would try and stick 2 Heroic Intervention into the sideboard.
Id love to see some maindeck interaction, besides protecting your stuff. Theres got to be a way to deal with Longtusk Cub, Hazoret the Fervent or The Scarab God to hedge against top tier builds, maybe even a Censor or Spell Pierce to buy a turn. The strategy and your offense looks really well investigated, it just needs some haymaker endgame or something to slow down the opponent enough to set up your team. Fog stuff like Haze of Pollen for example allows you to be on offensive and not die to RamuRed or Dinos. maybe just add a couple of 4-drops at least or something to thwart a Sweltering Suns. Maybe Growing Rites of Itlimoc Flip to cast a Tishana, Voice of Thunder. Theres a ton of intense midrange decks in the meta to keep in mind.
Looks like a fun deck to play, Im hoping Kumena and Silvergill were the missing pieces to Merfolk being competitive in Standard +1
2 weeks ago
Great suggestions, Oculus84! I ran this deck with Drake Haven and/or Faith of the Devoted at some points both main- and sideboard, and they didn't do much. This deck's worst matchup, I would say, is UW Approach control. They usually have enough mana to get around Censor, Haze of Pollen doesn't do anything, and Gideon's Intervention kills this deck, so, naturally, I want more diverse wincons. That's where these two would come in, but draining 2 or making a 2/2 flier won't do much against lifegain. Stir the Sands just as underwhelming as Drake Haven.
Kefnet, Kefnet, the least appreciated god, and yet my favourite, how did I not think of him for this deck? Blocker against aggro, lowers my curve, draws cards, and finally, can return excessive cyclelands to my hand to draw even more cards! I'm an idiot. Thanks, Oculus84.
2 weeks ago
Response to Waffles13.
I really like the idea of adding in the deserts. Not only will they add more cycling cards but it will also give Ifnir Deadlands something to target besides itself. Also removing some one drop cycling cards means I won't have much else to do turn 1 so putting down a tapped land will be a good option.
I'll take your advice on removing the Dissenter's Deliverance and replacing it with Without Weakness. Not having targeted removal on my end requires me to at least block an opponent's removal as much as possible. From looking at https://www.mtgtop8.com/topcards standard artifacts, it looks like most of the top artifcats are artifact creatures and I can remove those with the Archfiend of Ifnir so I'm going to remove the Dissenter's Deliverance from the deck entirely.
Vile Manifestation seems like a great card seeing as it has 4 toughness which is enough to dodge the common 3 damage removal spells and block small creatures. However, it doesn't synergize very well with Abandoned Sarcophagus so I'm not sure how well it would end up doing in my deck. I'll put 4 in my sideboard to put in against aggro decks because I plan on taking out the Abandoned Sarcophagus in those matchups.
Haze of Pollen seems useful but the 3 cost cycling is turning me off of it. I think that Heroic Intervention is a much more flexible card because it can block board wipes, targeted removal of my creatures or artifacts, or even allow me to chump block with my creatures without them dying. That last one I think makes it perform a similar function to Haze of Pollen and I like the flexibility that it provides. I'll test it out though if I get the chance.
I think Driven / Despair is better than it seems. For two mana I can usually draw at least one card because of Key to the City, which (2 mana for one draw) is equivalent to a cycling and sometimes better. I'll usually have other creatures that I can attack with and not just the tokens. If I can swing with 2 creatures then that makes it better than Costly Plunder and Painful Lesson. Also for Costly Plunder I would need to sacrifice a creature and I would most likely want to sac a token. If I have a token, then I can attack with it instead of sacing it to get the extra draw. I'm not a fan of Sword-Point Diplomacy because my opponent can make me discard any important draws I get. Driven / Despair also allows me to gain more than two cards, and in a deck with so much card advantage, I don't think other draw spells do enough. The card is also a good target for Key to the City to toss because it still has an effect from the graveyard. The second effect, Despair, seems like it would really mess with my opponent's plan if I can make them discard at least two cards.
2 weeks ago
Interesting concept! Archfiend of Ifnir is hard to work into this style of deck, I think. Typically blue is better at cycling but these colors get all the fancy snake tokens.My recommendations: Dissenter's Deliverance is a cheap nifty cycle card but might not find use in a lot of match ups besides being a cycle trigger. Maybe main board Without Weakness and sideboard Dissenter's Deliverance. If you go this route then I definitely feel you want Haze of Pollen main board and Heroic Intervention can chill sideboard if you really think you need it. Desert of the Glorified and Desert of the Indomitable are both great here and you could probably use 2 of each??
I'm not sure how badly you need Driven / Despair. You already have Archfiend of Ifnir as the main win condition along with Horror of the Broken Lands and Key to the City. Not to mention you're relying on the idea you have hipatra/ifner combo in full swing. A more reliable card draw could be of use like Costly Plunder, Painful Lesson or Sword-Point Diplomacy.
Hopefully any of this helped! I love the idea behind this deck.
1 month ago
Hey Laurie_89, you're right about the creature situation; red's creatures are faster than mine, but it's really only Hazoret that's bigger, but since they're all about attacking and not blocking I don't mind taking an early chunk of health in order to catch up afterwards, and they don't have any way of removing Ghalta, so if I was able to take the damage from them on turns 1-4 (which I'm assuming would probably be around 10 on average) then cast ghaltra, I could just use all my merfolk as chump blockers and ghalta would win in two or three turns. As far as energy decks go, I think they'd be tougher than red for me to deal with due to all their removal and good tempo, but I used to play a deck that was fairly similar to it until BFZ rotated out and as long as I can go first, I should be able to hold up pretty well, otherwise I'll have to resort to my sideboard for that matchup. Unsummon is my best friend against that deck, because they're gonna want to cast Servant of the Conduit asap every game, especially since I don't have removal, and in that case if I can Unsummon it, then it just buys me an extra turn minus one mana.
I definitely like the idea of Haze of Pollen though, because that works really well against both the red deck and energy decks, so I'll definitely plop a couple of those in the sideboard. Essence Scatter is a definite maybe, I just need to playtest it more to find out whether it's more important than Negate in my side right now or not. Sixth Sense is a great card, but I haven't been having trouble with hand size lately, so I'm gonna pass on that guy for now.
Also, I've been debating whether or not Watertrap Weaver would be a good addition or not, cause that makes for some pretty nice tempo, and if they only leave up a blocker or two, this can get you through a lot if you can't find a Herald of Secret Streams. But I'still unsure about it, because it does buy you time and can get your guys through a blocker, it can also tap their Servant of the Conduit turn 3 so they can't use it 'till turn four, but on the other hand it's a 2/2 for 3 and doesn't boost any of my other guys, and it only stalls one guy for a turn so it's not a permanent solution. Right now I'm just really hoping that they reprint one of the merfolk lords (Master of the Pearl Trident would be nice) so I can just fully commit to an aggro build instead of having to tweak it back and forth between aggro and mid-rangey stall.
Anyways, thanks Laurie_89 for the helpful suggestions, and now I've got to put them to the test to see what works best.
1 month ago
I like the dino surprise in this deck and you're right, putting him down on turn 4/5 is a real possibility especially with a Rishkar or Vineshaper Mystic turn three play. My only concern is that your low cost creatures aren't as strong as some of red's or energy's low cost creatures so I feel you may be losing some of your guys to block damage from these decks making Ghalta harder to cast. Maybe try some creature control likeEssence Scatter. Alternatively, you could still have the aggro plan and attack each turn with your unblockable merfolk, but to make sure other aggro decks don't beat you to the finish cast a fog effect on their turn such as Haze of Pollen. Also if you make your guys unblockable, maybe a card like Sixth Sense will be useful for card advantage.
1 month ago
IzzetFanatic I have not really looked into any other decks. I just heard about Affinity yesterday, so I am basically completely fresh to competitive magic. I was exploring the option of running around 10 prevent damage spells like Fog and Haze of Pollen and cards that send attacking creatures back to the opponents hand or tap creatures. My combo only needs to hit once for me to win so I don't mind decks flooding the field as long as I survive long enough to hit with Hellkite Tyrant and I ensure my hit connects. I know to be competitive in Modern I am going to have to spend money but I was hoping to clock in around $400-500.