Fiend Artisan

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Format Legality
1v1 Commander Legal
Archenemy Legal
Arena Legal
Block Constructed Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Casual Legal
Commander / EDH Legal
Commander: Rule 0 Legal
Custom Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Gladiator Legal
Highlander Legal
Historic Legal
Legacy Legal
Leviathan Legal
Limited Legal
Modern Legal
Oathbreaker Legal
Pioneer Legal
Planechase Legal
Quest Magic Legal
Tiny Leaders Legal
Vanguard Legal
Vintage Legal

Fiend Artisan

Creature — Nightmare

Fiend Artisan gets +1/+1 for each creature card in your graveyard.

, : Sacrifice another creature: Search your library for a creature card with converted mana cost/mana value X or less, put it onto the battlefield, then shuffle your library. Activate this ability only at any time you could cast a sorcery.

PuritanPuree on Amalia the Explorer

5 months ago

BioProfDude Thanks for checking out the deck!

I was actually just checking out the results of a big pioneer tournament that happened this past weekend to check how Amalia combo decks did and to compare lists. It actually did really well, taking 3rd and 4th, and it had a winning record against the winning deck, Izzet Phoenix. It was interesting to see that the most successful versions didn't even use Fiend Artisan at all (though a couple that made top 32 did), which was a bit surprising to me. Their sideboards also had a much more varied sideboard toolbox of 1-off creatures, which didn't surprise me too much, but I'm bad at sideboards, so I let other people figures those out, haha.

As for the suggestions, Selfless Savior actually did show up in basically all of the lists, usually as a 1-off. I was using Tamiyo's Safekeeping as a similar effect, but I'll happily trade them out for a good boy if that's the move. Selfless Spirit is a bit too tricky to play with in this deck since accidentally giving Wildgrowth Walker indestructible while trying to protect the combo while it's going off will draw the game, which is obviously not ideal. All of the top decks were also running Return to the Ranks, which I also found mildly surprising since I just assumed it'd find more use in a self-mill variant of the deck, which I'm not using, but they for sure know better than me. I'm assuming that Rally the Ancestors doesn't see any play both because of the sac clause, and because Return only costs 3 if I only need to get back 1 thing.

Thanks again for checking the deck out! I'll likely be editing the deck to reflect some of the changes from the tournament results shortly.

wallisface on Why Are So Many Recent …

5 months ago

DemonDragonJ sacrifice triggers have to be used carefully, and they were absolutely correct to make Fiend Artisan ability sorcery-speed. However whether these effects need to be sorcery or not rides heavier on the payoff rather than the sac itself.

I already gave you a bunch of examples earlier in this thread on abilities that are correctly only sorcery-speed. I would suggest going back and re-reading this thread.

wallisface on Why Are So Many Recent …

5 months ago

DemonDragonJ some good articles include:

I will say in general, even if the idea of instant-speed Fiend Artisan might ”sound awesome”, if the application of that idea comes at the expense of the game enjoyability overall, then it’s almost never a good idea. The game has a much bigger responsibility than just making an individual effect ”feel cool”.

Imo Wotc should continue to employ such tools as once-per-turn and sorcery-speed effects at a rate that continues to make the overall health of the game as strong as possible - they shouldn’t jeopardise the game for the benefit of a few cards.

DemonDragonJ on Why Are So Many Recent …

5 months ago

wallisface, it seems that you and I shall not be able to reach an agreement on this subject, so I do not see any reason to continue discussing it, further, but your assertion that limiting effects to sorcery speed is your opinion, not a fact, and, with as many members as this forum has, there must be, statistically speaking, at least one other user here who agrees with me, on this subject. However, I shall say that the example that you gave with Fiend Artisan sounds awesome, and that is exactly why I like being able to activate abilities at instant speed.

Also, I do admit that I do not have much knowledge about game design, so I definitely would like to learn more about it, so do you have any recommendations for what I should read?

wallisface on Why Are So Many Recent …

5 months ago

DemonDragonJ it's not just a case of "too powerful", its also a case of "bad game design".

In the case of Map tokens, allowing them to be triggered at instant speed would make the combat step a logistical nightmare. If a player (or, even worse, if both players) has a bunch of Map tokens in play and swings in combat, having those abilities instant-speed-triggerable will easily make that combat step take a massive amount longer, and additionally makes the entire combat interaction a massive gamble, as nobody will quite know which creature trades/beats what when the Maps are triggered (because they don't always add counters). So, in short, having Maps at instant speed creates the following problems:

  • Creates unnecessary grind and slowdown to the game in a phase that is already often fairly action-packed.

  • Adds chaos and randomness to the game in a way that strips away a degree of player agency and play-skill.

  • Entirely removes the risk of activating the token, as you can always just do it in your opponents end-step instead of spending mana upfront. This leads to less interesting/intense gameplay.

In the case of Fiend Artisan, being able to sacrifice creatures at instant speed is already a strong effect, in that you can block a creature and then sac it, nullifying the attack while also getting whatever benefit you got from the sacrifice. In Fiend Artisans case this payoff is ridiculous, in that if used at instant speed would make it very difficult for your opponent to ever have a proactive attack (without having trample) while also buffing your board. Additionally, it falls into the same trapping of just removing any stakes from activating the ability - if you can always just do it in your opponents endstep then you remove any decision making from the game entirely.

If you can't see that these cards, and many, many others, need to be at sorcery-speed in order to maintain game-balance, decision-making-processes, fair-gameplay, and a consistent tempo/pace to the game - then that's on you. It might be worth doing so reading on what makes good game design (not mtg specific, just in general) to get a better grasp on why having effects be sorcery speed or once-per-turn is a good thing for the growth/playability of the game.

wallisface on Why Are So Many Recent …

5 months ago

DemonDragonJ the list of abilities that are too powerful to activate at instant speed is going to be pretty broad, and for the most part I agree with most of the “sorcery only” abilities Wotc have made - especially as you have to take into context the formats they’ll be used in (including sealed).

I’m not going to name any kind of exhaustive list as I feel like this conversation is going nowhere quickly, but i’ll list a few good/distinct examples I can think of that would be completely miserable at instant speed:

TheJankTrain on Next Stop: The Exploration Station

6 months ago

Would reccomended adding Fiend Artisan to help tutor up the combo.

legendofa on Hand Control v2

7 months ago

Welcome to the club, stixx925!

If you want to control the opponent's hand, you need to start early, like turn 1. Thoughtseize and Inquisition of Kozilek are popular in several formats to start pulling everyone's hand apart, but pretty much any 1-cost discard will help.

It looks like the core of this deck is the Jace's Archivist + Notion Thief combo, so you want to get that out as quickly as possible. There are some good creature tutors in green, ranging from Fauna Shaman through Fiend Artisan to Worldly Tutor and Sylvan Tutor.

Finally, I think you can trim down some of the "whenever you draw" payoffs and and add some more removal. Your 4-drop spot is skewing your mana curve too high, so look for 1- and 2-cost cards.

Above all, have fun!

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