Destroy target artifact.

Dredge 1 (If you would draw a card, instead you may put exactly one card from the top of your library into your graveyard to your hand. Otherwise, draw a card.)

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Mystery Booster (MYS1) Common
Modern Horizons (MH1) Common

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Format Legality
Modern Legal
Block Constructed Legal
Oathbreaker Legal
2019-10-04 Legal
1v1 Commander Legal
Pauper EDH Legal
Casual Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Vintage Legal
Leviathan Legal
Legacy Legal
Pauper Legal
Limited Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Highlander Legal
Commander / EDH Legal
Tiny Leaders Legal
Unformat Legal

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Shenanigans Discussion

StopShot on Help me foolproof this infinite …

3 months ago

Today's infinite combo is in mono-red, but card suggestions outside of red are welcome. The combo:

Cards: Seasoned Pyromancer + Ashnod's Altar + Nim Deathmantle


The point of this thread: is to come up with card suggestions to add to the 99 of this theoretical deck that will help guarantee this combo will win the game. The problems this combo faces are outlined in the sections Hole A, Hole B and Hole C. Suggestions for combating any one of these three holes is greatly appreciated.

Potential pay-offs of this combo.

How this combo works: To start you just need to have all three cards listed on the battlefield. So long as the Seasoned Pyromancer creates at least one token you'll be able to sacrifice both the token and the pyromancer to Ashnod's Altar to generate mana which you can recur with Nim Deathmantle. This means theoretically you have created infinite draw/filtering, infinite 1/1 tokens for every time you discard two nonland cards and infinite colorless mana off those infinite tokens. Of course however, there are certain holes in this strategy that hinder it.

Hole A

Hole A of this combo: Whenever a deck comes up with infinite draw, it should be noted that it is never truly infinite card draw unless you can refill your library an endless number of times. Otherwise drawing too many cards when you don't have a library can result in losing the game. Since our token generation and mana generation are both directly tied to the number of times we can draw/filter cards that means our token and mana production is just as limited unless we can solve the infinite draw issue. This is what I'd refer to as Hole A.

Solutions and Problems to Hole A: One possible solution to regenerate one's library is to run either Kozilek, Butcher of Truth or Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre. Given the last ability of either one, if either titan ends up in the graveyard they will simply reshuffle our graveyard back into our library, and given our combo is always discarding cards this task should be easy. BUT it's not a perfect solution. Suppose in the following scenario we reshuffle our library and the following two statements happen to be true: (1) The Eldrazi titan is positioned as one of the bottom three cards in our library and (2) our library has an odd number of cards in it. If you were to continuously filter cards under this situation there would be no possible way to discard the Eldrazi titan without completely drawing out from your deck and losing the game as a consequence. This is also true if our library has an even number of cards in it and the Eldrazi titan makes up one of the two bottom cards of our library. You would need some extra card to fix this problem or else the combo would be limited to either noted event occurring.

Possibly a better solution than running the Elderazi titans would be to run Elixir of Immortality instead. Given we don't need to discard the Elixir to use its effects and our combo can generate excess colorless mana after each loop it should be feasible to cast and activate the Elixir so long as our library has more nonland cards in it than land cards. This solution isn't perfect either but it's better than using the Eldrazi titans. In the event our library has an even number of cards in it we'll always be able to draw into the Elixir of Immortality regardless of where its located in our deck. However the same can't be said if our library has an odd number of cards. In the event our library has an odd number of cards, if the Elixir happens to be at the very bottom of our deck, the last card, there would be no way to draw the elixir using our combo without over-drawing from our library. That means there is still a hole in this strategy, albeit a smaller one, but the question still remains; is there a better card for the job?

Hole B

Hole B of this combo: Just like Hole A, Hole B is another chance phenomenon that can derail our ability to continue the combo. Let's say under the given scenario our library currently has more nonland cards in it than land cards and we have 2 nonland cards and 2 land cards in hand when we start the combo. (Theoretically producing the tokens needed to continuously draw cards should be possible, but let's continue on with this scenario.) As we cycle through 2 cards at a time let's pretend that each consecutive two cards we draw is a land and a nonland together. This by itself would be enough just to keep the combo going, but then the unthinkable happens. We suddenly hit a massive land block in our deck, let's say the next 10 consecutive cards are all lands (despite how rare that chance may be). At this point we'd be at a deficit of negative mana per cycle just to dredge through each of these lands in order so that we can get to all the nonland cards beyond it. More than not, this scenario would be where our combo falls short due to this rare chance ordering of lands. This is Hole B of our combo.

Solutions and Problems to Hole B: When tackling the Hole B scenario, let's pretend we already have the perfect solution to Hole A that allows us to constantly shuffle cards in our graveyard back to our hand without fail. This is primarily to focus on the Hole B dilemma. One fact to keep in mind is given most decks tend to have more nonland cards than land cards it should be a given that with each deck shuffle we should end up with more tokens than before and thus more disposable mana to bypass any land blocks that may occur later on in the combo. So a given fact here is the later in the combo we go the less problematic Hole B starts to become. It's only before the first or second reshuffle that Hole B has the greatest potential to derail this combo.

One solution to Hole B is to use Shenanigans. Because of how dredge works we can always choose to have one of our cards be the dredged card. In this scenario we have guaranteed that one of the cards drawn or in this case dredged will always be a nonland card meaning our only outcomes from here on out will always be land + Shenanigans OR nonland + Shenanigans meaning there's no chance to lose value and always a chance to gain value. While this may seem like a perfect solution this problem it runs in direct contrast with our dilemma in Hole A. If we're using Elixir of Immortality as our card cycler of choice there's always the possibility we could accidentally dredge the Elixir into or graveyard by mistake and thus losing our ability to cycle our graveyard back into the library. While we wouldn't need to worry about dredging the Eldrazi titans away by mistake, that would mean we'd have to use a less effective Hole A solution in order to combat the problem that is Hole B. It should also be noted that since Shenanigans has Dredge 1 it won't be able to change our library from having and even number of cards to an odd number of cards and vice versa. In order to change the even or oddness of a library you'd need to use an off-color dredge card with an even dredge number to change the state of your library's even/odd card count. So is dredge the right solution to Hole B or is there another alternative that could work in its place?

Hole C

Hole C of this combo: Lastly yet most importantly, we need an actual way to win with this combo. While infinite card draw, infinite tokens and infinite colorless mana are really powerful, together they are not enough to win you the game right away. For that we'd need to have yet another card in our library dedicated to abusing any one of these qualities to win us the game on the spot. While this may be the easiest hole to fill in the question ultimately sits at; what is the best solution to Hole C?

I've come up with three win conditions that work, but if you know of one better I'd like to hear what wincon you'd prefer best. The three cards that come to my mind are Anger, Walking Ballista and Blasting Station. Anger would be an easy card to dump into the graveyard which would be what we could give our massive token army haste to win the game. This strategy can bypass annoying cards like Leyline of Sanctity and Propaganda as we can easily pay the price with our infinite colorless mana, but cards such as Crawlspace or Spore Frog could easily stop this win condition. If we use Walking Ballista or Blasting Station we'd have the mana to cast either and all the tokens needed to be sac'd for either to deal lethal damage, but both these win condition cards would easily be beaten if our opponents have a Leyline of Sanctity or a Dissipate. So, what is the best win condition for an infinite combo like this one?

RNR_Gaming on Alesha who doesn't smile

5 months ago

There are definitely ways to circumvent the downside like Dreadhorde Arcanist and Anarchist. Additionally, Shenanigans is a nice way to deal with pesky artifacts and fill the yard.

ihaveadogandhisnameistunathesecond on [[Primer]] Gonti - Night Market Shenanigans

5 months ago

Sorry dude, I don't know if you know this but Shenanigans is a red card. It can't be in your deck.

Ejell on

7 months ago

The problem with Shenanigans is that you don't want to (in fact, you can't allow yourself to) have dead cards in hand: Shenanigans is quite unplayable in most of our matchups and isn't played in our most important turns: the first 4 ones because we are fighting for hand and for board. The dredge 1 is really too few to consider it as a real upside too.

teslamon on

7 months ago

maybe Shenanigans for some more artifact removal and another dredge outlet

Phaetion on Ikoria Teaser

7 months ago

Otterly elementary, my dear Watson.

There's definitely some Simic Shenanigans going on with that teaser.

As for the cycle, I'll just wait and see what it is, but I'd love to see the Ultimatums from Shards Block. We (technically, since it's a leak) already got Abzan's.

xaarvaxus on Merciless rage needs upgrading

8 months ago

Getting some better lands like Dragonskull Summit and Sulfurous Springs to replace Cinder Barrens and the like is a good place to start.

A couple better mana rocks such as Talisman of Indulgence and Worn Powerstone would also be good additions.

I like the addition of Glint-Horn Buccaneer from you maybeboard as it acts as a discard outlet as well as giving added value to your madness and other discards.

Any flashback Increasing Ambition, retrace Throes of Chaos or dredge cards Shenanigans all work well with the host of discard outlets in the deck. Madness obviously works best but those others are good as well.

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