Is Esper Artifact Control for standard viable?
Posted on Jan. 10, 2017, 9:45 p.m. by Dracoson
It seems to me that the upcoming format is likely to be centered on busted combos (at least initially). To me that says that I want to be playing UBx control (I started Grixis, but have been leaning more Esper lately, as Anguished Unmaking seems likely to be better than Unlicensed Disintegration), with access to point removal, counter magic, and hand disruption. I'm also keep leaning on Herald of Anguish as the finisher with Distended Mindbender and Thought-Knot Seer backing him up and providing additional disruption.
Here's where my conundrum lies. If I use Herald of Anguish, it warps the deck to have a certain amount of artifacts to Improvise him out, and to be able to sac some to get rid of creatures (Tezzeret the Schemer's +1 would also help here on both counts). Now, some artifacts (Renegade Map and Inspiring Statuary) seem like no brainers and might let me cheat a little bit on mana (using 25-26 lands instead of 28-29), and Prophetic Prism helps too, but how much space is too much? Is 4 Inspiring Statuary too many? If I dedicate 12 spots to artifacts and 9 to creatures, that only leaves 10-13 for spells/planeswalkers, is that enough?
Here's the starting point:Esper Artifact Control
I personally think you have too much going on in there not enough focus on anything in particular. I think that UBG is the right way to go. If your focus is improvise, the demon and artifacts, which is good, you need artifact generation and there is no better way than clues to do that. 4 Servant of the Conduit, 4 Tireless Tracker and maybe even some Tamiyo's Journal could help along the way. Green and a bit of energy can give you access to Bring to Light to find anything you need and you can focus the rest on artifacts and improvise. More Battle at the Bridge will be great, as well as Yahenni's Expertise.
Also, between servant, aether hub and any form of energy generation (4 mana instant speed card draw card), you can splash anything else.