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Hindering Light Discussion
3 months ago
My main suggestion would just be to look for versions of your cards that do similar things for less mana. For instance, Soul Sear could probably be Lightning Bolt , Blazing Salvo , Mizzium Mortars , Thundering Rebuke , Roast , or Tears of Valakut if you're expecting flyers. Similarly, Dissolve and Ionize might be better as Spell Pierce , Counterspell , Hindering Light , Izzet Charm , Mana Leak , etc. depending on what you need to counter when.
The only other card I'll suggest (and I admit that it's a pet card of mine so I might be biased) is Myth Realized . It triggers prowess itself, grows from the same triggers as prowess, provides a mana sink in the late game, and is a creature that can conveniently dodge your own boardwipes whether they be Pyroclasm , Evacuation , or Wrath of God .
7 months ago
Yooooo this deck is sweet. I really like the untapping/tapping shenanigans as a concept. Don't know if you're looking for suggestions, so don't feel compelled to make these changes if you don't want to.
Judge of Currents seems like a dope sideboard card against Aggro decks in theory, though I don't know how it work in practice. Might require some testing since your board does take a little bit to set up.
I think some redundant way to untap your dudes would help here. Stonybrook Angler is a way to do this, or if you want to move towards a Snow manabase you could play Rimewind Taskmage. Both cards I mentioned are also Wizards, so they get the discount from Stonybrook Banneret.
8 months ago
fatalzintomyum Oh wow. I totally forgot about Iona, Shield of Emeria. That's a great suggestion because we effective way to lock out our opponent on turn 4. It wouldn't deal with the board at the moment, but preventing almost any further action could often win the game on the spot. If I were aiming to make the deck as competitive as possible, I'd probably cut Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite, Zetalpa, Primal Dawn, and 1 Angel of Invention. For a 3 and 3 split. Honestly, 4 Iona isn't out of the question. However, since I am trying to play this among fellow budget friends. I'd rather not hard lock them out of the game if possible. Unless, they anger me of course. Then I'll need a playset. >:D
I agree Modern is likely outside the power level for God-Pharaoh's Gift or at least in this shell. Unfortunately, I typically play Modern with my group so I wanted to essentially upgrade a Pioneer deck. I'm making that attempt, but that might be the final conclusion.
Balaam__ Ya... I agree the main weakness of this deck is just how easy it is to side board in both artifact and graveyard hate against it. To be perfectly honest, I don't think there's a perfect solution. For Leyline of the Void the best answer I currently have access to is Deputy of Detention or Brazen Borrower, but like you said that's only a temporary solution. I agree counterspells are the best potential solution for artifact hate. Essentially, becoming a jank UW Control with a GPG. I could see playing Dovin's Veto, Aether Gust, and Spell Pierce. Or maybe even some lesser used ones like Hindering Light/Keep Safe or Hypnotic Sprite. If I had the budget Force of Negation. What would you suggest?
9 months ago
If you replace Solemn Simulacrum and Oath of Lieges with any cards with activated abilities, you could switch Zirda, the Dawnwaker with another legendary creature with an activated ability like Basandra, Battle Seraph, Brion Stoutarm, Razia, Boros Archangel, or Tajic, Legion's Edge, and just have Zirda as your companion. But Zirda will also be very vulnerable since you can't recast her from the command zone if she gets removed, but if you play Brion Stoutarm you could just sac her when she gets targeted, and just use one of the many white recursion spells to bring her back. If you so choose to lean into the Sunforger side of the deck though, you could easily play Kykar, Wind's Fury as the commander, and just run extra protection spells that you could pull out of the deck using Sunforger such as Eerie Interlude, and Razor Barrier, or counterspells like Render Silent and Hindering Light. I think I might build something like that soon!
10 months ago
Well met, doughty traveler, and hereupon we must joust! You entreated my presence, and thence thou shalt be remunerated. I shall be oppugning your deck most perfidiously, yet you must fend off my awesome advice!
(Okay, I'm done.)
Let's do this.
Well, I have an artifact build of my own, thus I may be leastway some aid. (See Mr. Scarecrow)
In your deck updates you mentioned cutting Mystic Remora, but I find this card to be amazing whenever it is upon the field. Do you know how many decks run all creatures? Only those obsessed with Umori. Four mana is a severe tax, as this oft draws four or five cards or entirely ends the opponents' plans, merely due to them being afeard of you drawing too many cards.
Come on. Only 33 lands?! (Mine has 25.) I'd actually go down a few. Expedition Map can serve as a land-in-disguise, and Traveler's Amulet, as with Wanderer's Twig, each serve more late-game value just by being artifacts.
Go do your homework, young 'un. Should you not be studying for Tolaria West? This tutors for all sorts of trangams. Need defense for a combo? Pact of Negation! Wish to murder everything? Walking Ballista it shall be. It can also find an Inventors' Fair to find an artifact, and may stomp upon those foul graveyard players with a Tormod's Crypt.
Dispatch is spicy, Swords is just better. Now, as much as I love spicy cards, I find it difficult to justify them when there is just a better option, in this case one that is unconditional. Dispatch may be active turn one on a good day, two or three on a normal day, but Swords to Plowshares is always ready.
Prepared for some bromidic options? Ichor Wellspring draws a lot, being one of the primary engines in my deck. Krark-Clan Ironworks ends the game upon resolution. Thirst for Knowledge is always solid, stocking the bin and sculpting the hand. If you can get ahold of one, Daddy-o does bloody everything.
Now, upon my spicy choices:
I have said afore and I shall say once more, if the deck bears Dimir, you run Unfulfilled Desires. It goes through SO MANY CARDS. It lets you be mana efficient for those bloody turns where you have three just lying about and being indolent, whereat you may filter through three cards instead. This mayn't be card advantage, but it is amazing. Mana-flooded? Lovely! Mana-screwed? Still great! It is better than it reads, and it reads most meritoriously. Oh, and it's cheap, too. My card store had thirteen lazing within their shelves.
Turn Aside is fun, but have you seen the splendid Hindering Light? Of course you have, yet it draws a card, and therefrom I find reason enow to see to its inclusion. Only if you want, but it feels great.
Now, I much enjoy Supreme Will, for it leastwise cycles but may act as a lacking counterspell. Impulse goes in all of my blue decks, for it evermore pulls its weight. Moreover, I am rather fond of Painful Truths, as it draws quite a few cards withal much efficacy.
There are a sparse few things I would foredo.
Spellbook doesn't do anything. If you're drawing enough to be above seven, you should be winning the game instead of maintaining your hand. Call it clemency.
May all luck have you!
Discussing payment, you must see my lovely Hazezon. Thank you very much.
1 year ago
I suggest replacing Hindering Light with a different counter spell because you don't have many permanents in the deck that will be targeted by spells that often (Of course you could keep it in sideboard if your opponent would board in enchantment hate). Spell Pierce or Spell Snare could be good replacements.
1 year ago
I think counter magic is perfectly fine as a concept. It's a way to deal with issues, before they actually become an issue and it examplifies one of blue's main weaknesses: Difficulty in dealing with the board. I used to hate counterspells when I got into Magic again (during Lorwyn, damn Faeries), as they simply seem like a disability to play the game; "I want to play something." - "You may not". I have since accepted their place in the game and their importance.
The reason I still do dislike counter magic is because it exists to provide a strength to cover a weakness. A weakness that since then has been partially filled out by strong answers to the board over the course of Magic's history. One of the main offenders is Cyclonic Rift , especially present in Commander and other multiplayer formats that are significantly slower than Duel Magic (1 on 1). Other offenders are cards that really should be enchantments, but opted for a more nefarious although simpler route: Curse of the Swine and Reality Shift , and their predecessors; Pongify and Rapid Hybridization .
As said by Berry in the article; Blue has the ability to change something from one thing to another. We have also seen various types of such polymorphing done in enchantment form; Darksteel Mutation , Lignify , Frogify . All of this makes perfect sense in what blue is capable of doing.
However doing a change irreversibly like the Curse of the Swine or Reality Shift, is giving hard answers to a color whose weakness is hard answers - at least on the board. Yeah, you replace them with a creature, but a much weaker creature and if a token, one you can permanently remove by having it change zone.
Another issue with counter magic is the tempo shift. The opponent casts a 5 mana spell, you cast a 2-3 mana counter spell. Suddenly there's a disparity of 2-3 mana in the counterspeller's favor. It is mainly equalized because the blue player must have ready mana, resulting in that player not developing their own board state. However that can again be offset by utilizing instant speed spells or abilities that either advance board state or card draw for the blue player.
If the blue player didn't have these chances to apply disparity in mana spent and benefit, the color would struggle to have meaningful strengths, I know that. However the issue is in finding the fine line between how much mana disparity is acceptable. The cat is out of the bag on this one, as there have already been printed numerous versions of unconditional counterspells that have set a precedent for what blue counterspells are allowed to do and how cheaply.
If you compare a counterspell to a destroy spell, the main difference is obviously zone of application and also timing of application. One proactive, one reactive (well actually both are reactive, but you probably know why I have to make a distinction). Reactive spells provide a lot more flexibility in when you're required to use them. Their main problem is that sometimes reactive spells are too late to cause the same mana disparity that a counterspell does. As soon as that permanent hits the battlefield, an ability may come into effect, be it triggered, static or active. A reactive spell cannot avoid that.
Also take into account that blue can deal with any spell in existence, with the possible exception of spells with Split Second, specifically designed to be uninteractive - and still they can be interacted with . If there's a spell that is uncounterable, you can get creative with Venser, Shaper Savant , Time Stop , Mindbreak Trap , Ashiok's Erasure , there's load of ways to get around "uncounterable". Blue is also the color that will straight up see a threat on the board and simply take it for themselves, with Control Magic , Gather Specimens , Blatant Thievery , Expropriate . Effectively a removal, card draw and threat all in one.
No other color can boast the same catch all mechanic. White comes close for something in the same ballpark, but it is still just a bleak imitation - as countermagic goes. And evidently look at that price tag.
In the earlier days of Magic, blue was not the only user of countermagic. I feel like you could provide other colors with more conditional types of countermagic, to better even it out. And not just anti countermagic like Guttural Response . Blue would still be the best, but not the sole user. - White is a color that protects itself, so something like Hindering Light is the most likely avenue to take White Countermagic, anything that touches my stuff - go away. Think Equinox in terms of templating but not necessarily that specific. Giving their spells on the stack protection from a color or supertype or plain "old" Hexproof. - Green already has an affinity to provide hexproof to their stuff, Heroic Intervention and Veil of Summer , so expanding on that seems reasonable. - Red could go the Fork / Shunt route but is unlikely to get countermagic that straight up nullifies other types of spells than spells with targets. - Black is kinda difficult. The usual is just to tack an alternative payment of life, cards or permanents on an otherwise Blue card. Black already have an indirect proactive answer through selective discard, like Duress . The issue is these are all sorcery speed, so if an opponent suddenly starts drawing a lot of cards, it can be difficult for black to be proactive in time. So perhaps just providing Duress at instant speed through a condition would be acceptable. Something like "Instant Duress may be cast as an instant if an opponent has drawn two or more cards this turn." / "Instant Duress may be cast as an instant if the target opponent has 5 or more cards in hand". Any kind of variation on that.
Of course some would talk about color pie bleeding/breaking, but ain't that already happening by giving blue hard removal (by proxy) and large scale soft board removal? I know some of these issues are mainly aimed at multiplayer formats, but we cannot ignore that Magic has grown to be something else than only Duel Magic (1 on 1). Blue's counter magic is here to stay, but is it too much to ask that the other colors can get even slightly in on the action if not directly, then indirectly by interacting more with the stack?
Green has one of the best palettes available to them for a slightly slower format; mana ramp, card draw, large threats, ability to scale well, protective measures, explosive finishers and a hell lot of combo potential and pieces.
I think Green is only beaten slightly by Black in terms of Commander due to tutors in a singleton format. And because Black can cheat mana costs or pays differently, has access to card draw and good finishers, along many more combo pieces.
Blue is one of the only colors that reliably can stop combo or finishers dead in their tracks. Reversibly, they are the color best suited to keep those combos or finishers uninterrupted. They have the best access to card advantage and resource manipulation. And extra turns.
There's a reason that many cEDH decks are mainly some variation of Sultai colors (Green, black and blue) with maybe one added color or full WUBRG. I think this picture would be more diverse, if more colors became able to interact better. The ability to interact is one of the core foundations and strengths of Magic. Counter magic is a pillar of this interaction, more colors should find a way to do it or something similar.
1 year ago
Here's my take on your ask to change something based on your Maybe Board.
While these fetch lands help you fix, the fact that the lands you find will come in tapped is like you are missing the turn's land drop. Why not have 2 lands that actually give you mana instead AND help you get back artifacts from the graveyard?
I would consider changing Hindering Light or Turn Aside for Cyclonic Rift and/or Enlightened Tutor . The counter effect that you get with the first ones is very specific and you may find scenarios where you can't really use them, however CycRift works 2 different ways and the Tutor can help you find a Sorcery to board-wipe if you need to level the field.
Also, I would give a try with Sensei's Divining Top instead of Throne of the God-Pharaoh I like to give preference to cards that will give me card advantage every turn versus the ones that may or may not cause damage to opponents depending on you having creatures tapped.
Finally I would find a way to include Rhystic Study , it is too good not to. Maybe swapping with Darksteel Mutation , which is an Aura that does not really give you any benefit and any creature you target can be blinked or bounced. Unless you know a creature is the key piece of a win combo, i think this aura is not going to really help you win the game but having additional cards drawn with Rhystic Study will definitely give more options to.