Slycne - Beginner Grinder

Who I Am

My name is Justin, and I work for Escapist Magazine.

History With Magic

Like most folks I've played Magic on and off over the years. It's only been recently that a more competitive fire has been stirring. Moving past routinely getting prizes at FNM, I've Top 8'ed some PTQs and made into money at a few smaller events, it's been a slow climb but I'm enjoying seeing myself progress. I doubt I'll ever see myself on the Pro Tour, but I still like the environment of competitive magic.

Decks I'm Playing

Recently I've been trying to branch out from my aggro roots, see what it's like on the other sides and learn how they tick more fully. Playing control, tempo and combo in various formats.

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Said on Best packs for ......


I wouldn't worry too much about including, or avoiding, synergy, part of the fun of Chaos Draft is finding those weird obscure interactions - which you'll miss if you're only playing good stuff packs.

I think the bigger aspect to keep in mind is to keep the packs roughly on the same power level. No one wants to crack Homelands next to Rise of the Eldrazi.

July 30, 2015 11:23 a.m.

That's actually an archive of the old Wizard's site. The current Comprehensive Rules can be found at -

But yes, the deploy creatures option is available on all creatures in the current Emperor rules.

July 28, 2015 10:23 a.m.

Said on Can my opponent ......


To be perfectly clear, this is what's known as derived information as far as the rules are concerned.

  • Derived information is information to which all players are entitled access, but opponents are not obliged to assist in determining and may require some skill or calculation to determine.

At a Competitive REL event you are required to respond truthfully to your opponents question about derived information, but you're not required to give the exact details. A classic example is asking how big a Tarmogoyf is. You're not required to give them a number - so they can make mistakes accordingly, but neither can you lie to them either and must give them the correct method to determine it themselves.

At a Regular REL event - like FNM, derived information is considered free information and you should be answering fully.

July 27, 2015 12:59 p.m.

Because none of this involves the stack, it would be a draw. Damage and lifelink are simultaneous, and Tainted Remedy is simply a replacement effect. So you would take that much damage and they would lose that much at the same time. State-based actions see you are both at zero and you both lose the game.

However, if it was something like Spirit Link instead you would be dead since state-based actions will see you at a zero life total and that triggered ability won't get a chance to resolve.

July 27, 2015 4:33 a.m.

I could see it settling down around $10 over the next few weeks before climbing again. It's more or less at a similar spot as Courser of Kruphix when it ended up in supplemental product, though Collected Company is seeing far more play in additional formats.

I would find some for $10 now and call it a day. You're not going to miss out on some bottoming out to $3-5 dollars - it's seeing too much Modern play for that, and the second any support for tribes like elves shows up in Battle for Zenidkar it's going back up another $5+ dollars.

July 24, 2015 5:13 p.m.

Said on Abzan vs. control...


For the most part, Abzan Control is a huge underdog against the blue based control decks, you just have to accept that it's a bad match-up in general. They have better card advantage, fewer dead cards, and Abzan is too slow to get under or later pressure counterspells.

Game 1 - Just hope you draw the right parts of the deck. Aggressively cycle Abzan Charms since you'll generally have plenty of removal stuck in hand when you want to fight over one of their creatures.

Game 2 - Pitch the dead removal spells like Bile Blight for more discard and card advantage - Duress and Read the Bones. Den Protector is a huge help to have since you can just keep buying back discard or draw two cards. It almost doesn't matter what your threats are, just keep sticking 2-for-1s on them. You can actually card advantage them after board and can save your discard to force threats through.

As for managing the clock, this is a match-up you'll want to play at a brisk pace otherwise finishing three games will be rough. A few general notes...

  • If it's early in the tournament and you're going to draw. You might honestly want to consider conceding instead. You're just going to play more UX control in the draw bracket.

  • One of the more important aspects about the match-up is managing their Dig Through Times. Sometimes it's correct to run something into a counterspell so that they can't Dig Through Time that turn. Also vice versa, don't just jam spells every turn if they are right below ideal Dig Through Time mana/delve.

July 24, 2015 10:32 a.m.

Yes, you still cast Scent of Cinder targeting their creature, thus triggering Willbreaker. Whether or not the spell or ability resolves or does anything on resolution doesn't change that. So you could reveal 0 red cards making X = 0 and this doesn't retroactively stop the spell from having been cast or anything. Note that you reveal during resolution as well, so your spell has gone through the whole process of targeting and such.

July 24, 2015 2:46 a.m.

Yes, you could exile the creature and it wouldn't be returned to play. Endless Whispers causes a delayed trigger when the creature dies. The person with Scavenging Ooze simply needs to activate it before the triggered ability resolves to keep it from returning.

July 24, 2015 2:16 a.m.

Said on Is Smash to ......


Noble_Jimjam & magnetcrocodile

Yes this works. Smash to Smithereens is not worded like say Searing Blood where the damage is contingent on something else occuring. If you really needed a Lava Spike you could target the Darksteel Citadel.

July 24, 2015 2:09 a.m.

Said on When is a ......


wanus88 Because Quiet Contemplation and Citadel Siege target creatures an opponent controls, it's the same outcome nobu_the_bard mentioned. By the time Quiet Contemplation or Citadel Siege's ability is trying to resolve Willbreaker has already taken control of them. So they are no longer legal targets for those abilities and they will be countered.

July 22, 2015 6:03 p.m.

Said on How do you ......


ThatJunkMage It's made pretty clear at the end of 3.9 when it's a requirement to shuffle.

  • At Competitive and Professional REL tournaments, players are required to shuffle their opponents decks aftertheir owners have shuffled them. The Head Judge can require this at Regular REL tournaments as well.
July 22, 2015 4:40 p.m.

Said on When is a ......

  • Mainly wondering if a creature has been targeted if refocus gets countered.

Willbreaker's ability doesn't care whether the spell or ability resolves. So yes, if you cast Refocus targeting an opponents creature, Willbreaker's ability is added to the stack. Willbreaker ability resolves and then the original Refocus then tries to resolve. Your opponent can Counterspell Refocus, but it won't stop Willbreaker's ability.

July 22, 2015 2:36 p.m.

magicnerd0815 That is incorrect. The wording is a little counter-intuitive wording, but these ability still trigger and in order to go on the stack you need to specify a target. As they are resolving is when the decision is made if you want to pay for the effect.

Magic Judges Blog: Yasova Dragonclaw pays for the trigger only on resolution

  • 603.5. Some triggered abilities' effects are optional (they contain "may," as in "At the beginning of your upkeep, you may draw a card"). These abilities go on the stack when they trigger, regardless of whether their controller intends to exercise the ability's option or not. The choice is made when the ability resolves. Likewise, triggered abilities that have an effect "unless" something is true or a player chooses to do something will go on the stack normally; the "unless" part of the ability is dealt with when the ability resolves.
July 22, 2015 1:52 p.m.

Oh, I see what the question is now. Please try to explain it a little more clearly or directly link to the relevant area in question.

Yes, Yasova Dragonclaw's ability has the same beneficial interaction in that the ability always triggers and targets, thus triggering Willbreaker, and you're not required to pay for the ability.

July 22, 2015 12:48 p.m.

What will happen is that you activate Yasova Dragonclaw's ability targeting an opponents creature. This triggers Willbreaker's ability, which gets added to the stack. Provided no responses or additional actions, the stack start resolving. Willbreaker's ability resolves first giving you control of the creature. Yasova Dragonclaw's ability will actually be countered by the rules as it tries to resolve since it specifies that is must target an opponents creature.

So you will gain control of the creature from Willbreaker but it will not get to untap or get haste that turn.

July 22, 2015 12:33 p.m.
  • If you aren't already running 2 copies you should be. The stock list has had two copies for a while now. The first mindslaver can get blown up, eaten, countered or any number of things. Sometimes the lock is the only way to win a game and if you don't have any more you're screwed.

lordoftheshadows Just to point out that unless your opponent has a way to permanently remove it from the graveyard, like Scavenging Ooze, a second Mindslaver isn't necessary since the lock involves Academy Ruins.

July 20, 2015 6:52 p.m.

Said on Boggled by Bogles...


I'll double down on the suggestion to cut some Spirit Link for Unflinching Courage. That one aura is lifelink, a relevant power/toughness increase, gets around chump blocks, and it helps to insulate your against Chalice of the Void. I would cut 3 for 2 Unflinching Courage and 1 Keen Sense.

Also, I'd suggest swapping the numbers on Spider Umbra and Hyena Umbra. Yes, in a vaccum first strike is generally better than reach, but there are 8 other sources of first strike in the deck Daybreak Coronet and Ethereal Armor - and extra first strike is redundant. More importantly, reach is an incredibly relevant keyword against a number of match-ups. For instance, infect and affinity are both packing 4 Inkmoth Nexus. As someone that played boggles for a while, this is a common initial mistake.

July 17, 2015 3:29 a.m.

Said on Faster red aggro?...


My thoughts based on testing.

  • Goblin Glory Chaser was underwhelming. It doesn't have the high upside of Foundry Street Denizen or utility of Frenzied Goblin to push Goblin Rabblemaster or Goblin Piledriver past blockers. It's no Stromkirk Noble.

  • Mardu Scout/Goblin Heelcutter are things I've toyed with and wasn't sold one way or the other. I've just been jamming 4-ofs during testing to see the same cards more often. Worth exploring more.

  • Obelisk of Urd is a trap. Sure, the nut draws are insane, but it's easy to get a game where these get clogged up. It also lines up very poorly against Languish as you usually take a turn off of damage to play it and then get your board swept.

  • I just don't think Collected Company is the style of deck you want to be with Goblins. You have too many important spells, so the creature count is lower. Many of the creatures are individually little impact. And I don't think you want to be playing a value game against most other match-ups.

July 16, 2015 1:21 p.m.

Said on Faster red aggro?...


The list that's currently doing well in our testing.

20 Lands

16 Creatures

20 Spells

Sideboard is a core of 4 Roast, 4 Eidolon of the Great Revel, and you can use the other 7 to fill in as needed.

July 16, 2015 10:49 a.m.

Yes, Rest in Peace's replacement effect means no card ever enters your graveyard. So Energy Field's second ability never triggers.

July 16, 2015 2:19 a.m.

MTG Decks

Stoneforged Rock and Roll Playtest

Commander / EDH Slycne


Stoneforged Rock & Roll Playtest

Legacy* Slycne


Oath Sworn To Black Darkness That's Dark Playtest

Commander / EDH Slycne


Atarka's Goblins: Once You Pop The Fun Don't Stop Playtest

Standard* Slycne


Finished Decks 44
Prototype Decks 40
Drafts 0
Playing since Zendikar
Points 20090
Avg. deck rating 5.20
T/O Rank 72
Favorite formats Standard, Commander / EDH, Modern
Venues Atomic Empire, Gaming Underground, Event Horizon Games, Game Theory
Last activity 5 days
Joined 4 years
MTGO Username Slycne