PayOneLife Deckspert

Howdy slayers!

I've been playing for a while now - I remember getting my first fetchland in a booster back in the day and thinking 'One life! What is this rubbish!?'. I promptly traded it away for some cleric tribal card and learnt my first harsh Magic lesson.

I haven't played an awful lot of competition, and most of it has involved more harsh Magic lessons. I really love to brew, and you'll find me dropping comments on decks all over the place. Having played for a while, and spent may hours looking up junk on Gatherer, I feel I can offer something in this way.

Good luck out there!

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Hey there, nice deck! A guy at my lgs used to run something similar back when I was playing my Affinity deck a lot. It wrecked me every single time.

I'm curious about your choice of Secure the Wastes. Have you considered Increasing Devotion? It gives you better token to mana ratio whether you cast it normally or flash it back. Being able to cast it twice helps for those games where you have to chump block for a number of turns or they are able to wrath the board. Also it has a great synergy with Snapcaster mage, allowing you to target it and get 10 tokens for 5 mana. Just a thought.

June 24, 2017 11:13 p.m.

Said on Sure Hit...


There are some really weird suggestions here, this thread has me scratching my head.

Firstly, I think your mana curve is a bit of an issue. You have 22 2cmc cards which is really too many. It means that currently you only have two cards in the deck to cast on turn one (Serum Visions) in an aggro deck which wants to race the opponent. That is a problem. Have a look at something like 8 whack - nearly the entire deck is 1cmc cards. It also means that you will usually be only casting a 2 cmc spell on turn three, when if you had a mix of 1cmc and 2cmc cards you'd be able to cast two spells. At the moment you go:

Turn 1: Land, pass.
Turn 2: Land, 2cmc rogue, pass.
Turn 3: Land, 2cmc rogue or 3 cmc card (you've got a 56% chance of hitting one of your 3cmc cards by turn 3 when you're on the play, so half the time you'll only play a 2cmc card).

You're on turn 3 and you have two creatures. If you increase your 1cmc rogues it will look like this:

Turn 1: Land, 1cmc rogue, pass.
Turn 2: Land, 2cmc rogue, pass.
Turn 3: Land, 2cmc rogue, 1cmc rogue, (or 3cmc card), pass.

You end up with 4 creatures in play on turn 3 instead of 2! This is extremely important if you want to get around your opponent's removal (and they all run a lot of it). It will also allow you to cast spells for their prowl cost a lot sooner.

Serum Visions is also not a good choice for an aggro deck as card selection is far less important to your plan than having threats. I think the first thing you should do is drop Serum Visions and possibly Morsel Theft or Inkfathom infiltrators for four Slither Blades. I would also consider playing Faerie Miscreant, as it gives you an evasive body with a minor upside. It can block fliers which can sometimes be necessary to staying alive. If you choose to play Miscreant you'd need to play the full four. If you were just going to play 2 and keep the Morsel Thefts then you'd be better off with Triton Shorestalker as previously suggested (Gudul Lurker is terrible though, not close to worthy of consideration).

I'd also cut Fireshrieker. I get that it gives you double triggers for combat damage, but it's just too slow! You can't equip it until turn 4, and if someone kills the creature you equip it to then you've just wasted all of your turn 3 mana and half of your turn four mana for no benefit. Cards like Sword of Fire and Ice and Sword of Light and Shadow are far more powerful and don't get played in modern because they don't do anything straight away. I like the idea of a single copy of Earwig Squad. It will usually cost you three mana (especially if you take my advice on bringing in the 1cmc creatures) and it's enter the battlefield effect is very strong against some decks in modern. Ad Nauseam combo only runs two cards as win cons, and storm combo usually only runs three. These decks use different cards to win so that they can't get beaten by stuff like Cranial Extraction, but Earwig Squad doesn't make you choose cards with the same name. If you resolve Earwig Squad against these decks you literally win. It's also a 5/3 on turn 3 which is pretty darn aggro AND it's a rogue!

Another card I think could be good is Smuggler's Copter. It helps cards like Frogtosser Banneret and Royal Assassin get in real damage and the looting efect is pretty handy. Also its name fits perfectly with rogues :P

I'm not sure about most of the cards in your sideboard, how did you decide on these? As for suggestions, I would substitute Terror for Doom Blade, which is strictly better and 25c to buy. I also like Faerie Macabre, which is a great uncounterable response to reanimator decks, Snapcaster Mage, Tarmogoyf and Delirium amongst others. It's also a rogue with evasion for the times you don't end up needing to hate on the graveyard. You might also consider Tormod's Crypt because dredge and reanimator strategies are going to be the decks most likely to outrace you. A few Dispel would help nicely against burn decks, Collected Company, Ad Nauseam, Chord of Calling, Cryptic Command and to counter your opponent's counterspells! Having two Negate and two Dispel will help a lot against burn. I would drop Diabolic Tutor, Inquisitor's Flail and Hands of Binding for some combination of the cards I've suggested.

Hope this has been helpful :)

June 18, 2017 6:37 a.m.

If there were fetches in the deck and more Fatal Pushes it could be pretty useful. Currently it allows Mutavault to produce black at little opportunity cost. I think one in the main deck is good, but no more than that to avoid the issue of having two in hand (them being legendary and all). Definitely not for the sideboard though - they do absolutely nothing to stop anything another deck might be doing.

June 11, 2017 12:23 a.m.

PickleNutz Urborg makes itself a swamp so you can tap it for black mana. It also doesn't work with Blood Moon; if you have both out you get what is called a dependency (it's part of the layering rules) so Blood Moon actually stops Urborg's effect from working. It's terrible in a deck with Blood Moon and even worse as a sideboard answer to it.

It's true that you're not going to get aggro vampires working (at least in mono-black). I'm wondering if you might get midrange vamps working though, with the excellent disruption (Thoughtseize, Inquisition of Kozilek, Collective Brutality, Fatal Push and even Victim of Night) and the good midrange creatures like Gifted Aetherborn, Vampire Nighthawk and Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet available to black. Black has some great Lilianas for the job too.

I was looking for a cool finisher for a control/midrange deck the other day and found Malakir Bloodwitch, which dodges Path to Exile, Fatal Push, Abrupt Decay and Lightning Bolt meaning they basically have to have Terminate or double Bolt late game to deal with it. On top of that it has evasion and an etb so it does something when it hits the battlefield. If you have even a couple of other vampires it's a Lightning Helix that doesn't target stapled to a hard to kill evasive beater. It seems to me that it's black's Stormbreath Dragon. I really want to make it happen and I think this is the build.

But yeah, my advice is to think midrange and not aggro. Your curve just isn't low enough and your creatures too inefficient for aggro.

June 10, 2017 11:13 a.m.

Interesting Deck! Tomorrow, Azami's Familiar lets you get around Weirding too, if that's useful. Could be a good one-of.

June 9, 2017 12:23 p.m.

Said on Budget Izzet Delver...


Anger of the Gods does hurt you, but so do Day of Judgment and Pyroclasm. You use them when your opponent has a threatening board. Board wipes are essentially card advantage spells - you take out more of their stuff than your stuff and that's card advantage. Your game plan is to land one or two threats and then back them up with your control suite, so you don't usually lose much stuff. This means that most the time decks that are trying to go wide will be punished by Anger more than you are if they overextend. When you play you should keep a threat in your hand, so that if the board gets cleared you can just drop the new threat into play and keep them on a clock.

Tormod's Crypt doesn't hurt your graveyard at all which is why it's better for your build than something like Relic of Progenitus. Remember that Cryptic Serpent cares about your graveyard too.

Steam Vents is a solid choice. After that if you can't afford Tarns you might look at the red and blue fetches from Khans (such as Bloodstained Mire and Flooded Strand) as they can fetch Steam Vents and so are helpful for mana fixing even though they're not quite as good as Tarn. Also any fetch is worth getting as they are great for any future decks you might decide to build.

Burn is an interesting question; have you been struggling against it? It works on the principle that each of its cards are worth 3 damage, so it only cares about each of those cards generating that much damage. Because it doesn't have any card advantage if you can prevent sufficient damage it will often run out of gas. A natural advantage you currently have is that you don't damage yourself with your lands, meaning that burn decks have to find at least one extra card to beat you. Essentially you take the control role and try to make the game go long.

With this in mind here is my strategy to beat burn. Firstly you let them burn your creatures. That's a card that they don't get to damage you with - the exception being Searing Blaze which you should counter if you can as it does both creature and player damage. This works because you'll only need one creature late game to take over, when your burn friend will be in topdeck mode and praying they peel something good. Counter any spells that go to your face, but prioritise Lightning Helix and Boros Charm where you can. Lightning Helix can buy them another turn to try to draw a kill spell and Boros Charm is their most efficient burn spell. This means you will probably want to let a few Lava Spikes or Rift Bolts through.

As for their creatures you should kill them as soon as possible otherwise they create too much damage value for your opponent. Either bolt them (first choice) or block them where you can so long as you kill the attacking creature when you don't have removal. This does put some pressure on your creatures as they are pulling double duty - eating bolts and killing creatures. To help out if you need the creature to block their attacker and they try to bolt it you should save it with a counter when you can (otherwise follow the let them bolt it rule). Also kill Eidolon of the Great Revel as soon as you can, don't let them get value out of it.

As for sideboarding I would try out the strategy I suggested above before you try sideboarding in answers. You already have 3x Dispel, 4x Mana Leak, 1x Izzet Charm, 4x Lightning Bolt, 2x Electrolyze (good for killing their creatures) and 2x Spell Pierce which are all solid against burn! Even Remand isn't bad at slowing them down a turn. If you really needed a sideboard answer I would probably go for Negate as it's cheap and good for a lot of match ups. Eidolon isn't great as it does their work for them - it hurts you a lot as well.

Hope that wasn't too much text! I'd be interested to hear how your next burn matchup goes :P

June 8, 2017 1:37 a.m.


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