Riddlemaster Sphinx

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Legality

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
Vanguard Legal
Vintage Legal

Riddlemaster Sphinx

Creature — Sphinx

Flying (This creature can't be blocked except by creatures with flying or reach.)

When Riddlemaster Sphinx enters the battlefield, you may return target creature an opponent controls to its owner's hand.

ASalesman on Unesh, Ultimate Guide (Tribal)

7 months ago

BIG REVISION HERE

Here is all the big changes I've made to this list, and an explanation for each. Guide edits will come in a little bit!

  • Replaced Burnished Hart with Mistwalker. Burnished Hart feels too slow, Mistwalker is a cheap sphinx that makes the deck go fast. Mistwalker is a nice addition because it benefits from the full 2 cmc reduction from Unesh. 1/3 and flying on Mistwalker makes it the best changeling when it comes to combat.
  • Replaced Guardian of Tazeem with Aetherflux Reservoir. Aetherflux Reservoir is a new win condition in this deck. With all of the added changelings and ability to bounce changelings to your hand, it is easier than ever to play a lot of spells on your turn. In addition to being a 50 lifepoint cannon at instant speed, it is the only lifegain in the deck. It can make up for all the health you lost from Mana Crypt and Ancient Tomb. Guardian of Tazeem's effect is underwhelming most of the time. Having the other cheaper sphinxes there is still 20% sphinx, and are easier to play.
  • Replaced Leyline of Anticipation with Narset's Reversal. Leyline's effect is honestly underwhelming at 4 CMC. It's great if it starts in your opening hand, but it is Force of Will fodder otherwise. Debatably it is worth for synergy with Sphinx of the Second Sun, but adding emergence zone (description below) gives you a cheaper Leyline effect at the cost of it only being one turn. One turn with the effect is all you need to win the game though, or to get very far ahead with Sphinx of the Second Sun. Narset's Reversal is a great card because it can be great in a counterspell war, but it can also be used to augment your other cards such as Frantic Search or High Tide or Ghostly Flicker. I love Narset's Reversal because it is great on it's own, but also sees some great synergy.
  • Replaced Myriad Landscape with Emergence Zone. Myriad landscape is noticably too slow, similar to burnished hart. The utility from Emergence Zone can be outstanding. Emergence Zone is a more easily accessible Leyline of Anticipation essentially. It is less mana to use at the price of using it for only a turn. Presumably the turn that you would use it you would also win the game, so you don't need it more than once anyway.
  • Replaced Treachery with Cloudstone Curio. Treachery is a clunky card that rarely resolves. If the mana doesn't untap after this card is played, it feels very bad. Cloudstone Curio is an engine in this deck. It really keeps the BFOF's coming. Playing this card with Universal Automaton on the field means you get to double all of your BFOF's that you play. Additionally, it works particualrly well with the newly added Aetherflux Reservoir.
  • Replaced Long-Term Plans with Chain of Vapor. If you are playing the deck right you are seeing enough of your deck to get your game winning cards without using long term plans. Long term plans also scuffs one of your BFOF's because your opponent knows which card it is. Chain of vapor has many uses. As well as being spot removal, it can be used to protect Unesh, and to return other cheap sphinxes to your hand to be played again which grants additional synergy with the Aetherflux Reservoir win condition.
  • Replaced Sphinx of Uthuun with Sakashima of a Thousand Faces. Sphinx of Uthuun is expensive for what it does. It will normally be chaper to play Sakashima, and it becomes a second Unesh which doubles all of your BFOFs rather than getting you an extra regular FOF. Having a second Unesh on the field also grants you protection from spot removal targetting only one Unesh.
  • Replaced Riddlemaster Sphinx with Bloodline Pretender. Riddlemaster Sphinx's ETB isn't as good as the others (Enigma Thief and Dream Eater). Bouncing one creature isn't super great because your sphinxes already have combat superiority most of the time. It feels expensive for what it does, which means it is too slow. Another cheap sphinx in this slot speeds up the deck, and provides extra synergy with the other added cards.
  • Replaced Island with Lotus Field. I want to try this out. I am skeptical that it is actually better than an Island, but we will see! Let me know what you think here.
  • Replaced Island with Sea Gate Restoration  Flip. Becasue why not really? Worst case scenario, you pay 3 life to have it enter as an untapped island. Having it your hand later game can get you a lot of cards in a pinch.
  • Replaced Imprisoned in the Moon with Gilded Drake. Gilded drake is 1 mana cheaper. It not only takes your opponents creature away from them, it also gives it to you, at the cost of them having a 3/3 flyer. In cEDH this trade is insanely good for you. Imprisoned in the moon can be removed to return the creature back to their side. Nothing happens when Gilded Drake dies. He can also be easily blocked by one of your sphinxes, which means it might be chip damage to a different opponent. To me Gilded Drake is a no brainer here.

ASalesman on Unesh, Ultimate Guide (Tribal)

1 year ago

Dominaria Remastered Gave me a couple of goodies! Also I made some subs to favor early game power of the deck rather than greeding the later game. CEDH decks are powerful because they are fast. I want UNESH to play as fast as possible.

I updated the version of Urza's Incubator and High Tide because they have foil prints now! Now just waiting for foil prints of Enigma Thief, Riddlemaster Sphinx, and Fierce Guardianship to have a full foil deck!!

I put Sphinx of Lost Truths back in for Sphinx of Clear Skies because it feels better to draw the 3 cards right away rather than waiting for the attack, even if you do have to discard 3 after.

Vexing Sphinx instead of Argent Sphinx due to lower mana cost, early survivability, and card draw that isn't necessarily reliant on UNESH being in play. Further testing needed to see if the discard from vexing sphinx hurts too much or not.

Mystic Remora instead of Kefnet's Monument. Kefnet's monument always feels too slow for what it is actually doing. It is clearly the lowest powered artifact in the deck. In the two turns waiting to play Kefnets monument, Mystic Remora could draw you several cards. These cards could be the difference between winning or losing, being able to ramp in to UNESH or not, having an additional answer faster than you would otherwise. I had a personal crutch with Kefnet's monument because it fit the theme. However Mystic Remora is the clearly stronger card (and has a foil print for the very first time).

DanMcSharp on Free Fly (Arena Standard)

2 years ago

Hello again,

Honestly I don't know if my insight is so great that you should eagerly look forward to it like this, but I certainly don't mind, always glad to help as I can!

First thing I notice is that you don't have a lot of 1 and 2 drops. The deck mostly starts to come online at turn 3 or 4, and then you try to get the most out of cards like Watcher of the Spheres and Warden of Evos Isle (8 of these seems like a bit much btw, you could remove a few Warden of Evos Isle ) which would imply that you want to use all your mana every turn, otherwise they didn't achieve much. You also don't have anything to play at instant speed as it is, so if I was you I would replace the 4 Alseid of Life's Bounty with 4 Selfless Savior because taxing yourself 1 mana for each Alseid of Life's Bounty that you want to use really hurts since you have nothing else to do with the mana if you end up not using it. Getting hexproof is nice, but you run so many creatures that I'm pretty sure you should be more worried about board-wipes, and Selfless Savior usually helps more with that anyway. Sure Alseid of Life's Bounty has lifelink, but it's not getting any bigger or enchanted in this deck, so I wouldn't count on it to keep you alive with its life gain.

I have to admit I'm not a big believer in Archon of Absolution myself, but I can see how useful it can be with today's meta since mono-white life gain/agro is everywhere. But I must say I feel like it's dead weight in any control matches, and it only having 2 toughness at 4cmc makes it too easy to remove for anything that's not white. If it works well for you, I'm glad to hear it though!

Reidane, God of the Worthy  Flip seems like a fine addition. It's probably annoying enough to play against for you to run some, and with all the snow cards around these days it's the best time to try it out.

If you're concerned about protecting your creatures, the first thing that comes to mind for you in this deck would be Lofty Denial , but if you feel fancy you could try adding 1 or maybe 2 Flicker of Fate . It can save a creature from targeted removal, return a stolen card back to your side of the battlefield, mess with the opponent's enchantments, +1/+1 counters and equipments, could be a combat trick for your Watcher of the Spheres by bouncing another flier, could draw you a card with Cloudkin Seer or bounce another target with Riddlemaster Sphinx and more interestingly, it could turn your Hakka, Whispering Raven into Alrund, God of the Cosmos  Flip at instant speed!

This would already give you a few instant speed things to do if case you'd rather keep Alseid of Life's Bounty in the deck. If you go that route you could also consider Skycat Sovereign since it's a good 2 drop anyway, and it would give you more things to do with any leftover mana. Actually, 1 or 2 castles like Castle Ardenvale or Castle Vantress probably wouldn't hurt either.

I'm more used to seeing azorius flier played as a low curve agro deck, but it can probably work fine this way too. Actually you could also try slotting in like 2 Mazemind Tome , it's usually a fine addition for midrange decks that don't have much control elements, and it's also life gain!

Hopefully this gives you some food for thought.

Cheers.

Blotterhead on Free Fly (Arena Standard)

2 years ago

DanMcSharp - Sorry to bother you again, I won't make a habit of it! But since you were so helpful before, maybe you could take a look at my main Arena deck?

It really does well for me, but Reidane, God of the Worthy  Flip might have a better option? I keep going back and forth with that and Jubilant Skybonder . The reason Reidane, God of the Worthy  Flip seemed to be a good fit was that 1.) a lot of players are using snow lands, 2.) it's a 3 CMC flying, and 3.) I don't have any life gain or control so the artifact can help with damage control, and helps protect my creatures that rely on their abilities to make the deck work.

I also realize 4x Gust of Wind may seem like a lot, but the extra card draw along with something that can bounce back Planeswalkers or destroy large token creatures for CMC 2 has been working like a champ.

Maybe even Riddlemaster Sphinx has a better option, but it seems to work very well, especially when I can cast it for cheap.

Also want to add that I experimented with Vryn Wingmare and it only made things worse. Any input would be appreciated, thank you!

fireteam on 4c control

4 years ago

Today I got a few more wildcards, so we got

Additionally, I changed out the Despark for a Time Wipe (currently a Ritual of Soot )

fireteam on 4c control

4 years ago

Not super happy with the 1 Despark left (down from 3 originally) but still debating what to put there. As of writing still down:

Also I know the land base is by far not optimal (really need to take advantage of all the scry lands) but I don't have the rare wildcards to do so.

abbatromebone on U GOT BURNED

4 years ago
  • Sol ring is not modern legal.
  • 75 cards means your deck will be less consistent than a 60 card deck. However you can have a sideboard of 15 cards maybe consider pulling some of those cards out.
  • You have a lot of creature cards that get you vaule off your spells. However 23 is a lot of creatures when you want to cast spells. You may want to trim cards there. Espically the higher cmc ones like Sun-Crowned Hunters and Riddlemaster Sphinx
  • consider spell cards like Rift Bolt Searing Blaze and Electrolyze
  • although i said to trim creature cards Monastery Swiftspear is an amazing one drop due to haste, and can get really big from your spells.
  • Firemind's Foresight is great because it lets you tutor for cards you want however its 7 mana which is a lot espically when you want to cast a lot of spells. For ideas for cheap spells (cantrips) i would recommend looking at modern storm. The entire deck is build around what your doing. Its something to consider.
  • You have a fair number of gold cards, and cards that are double blue or red, so running only basics can be hard. It keep things in the lower budget you could run izzet guildgate. Cascade Bluffs isn't to expensive i think either.

Caerwyn on Returning a card enchanted with …

4 years ago

Please remember to link your cards using double brackets

[[riddlemaster sphinx]]

Riddlemaster Sphinx ; In Bolas's Clutches ; Drag Under .

There is a difference between control and ownership of a card.

Control is who controls the permanent or spell on the stack; ownership is the player from whose deck the card came (or who brought the card in from outside the game, if something like Glittering Wish was used).

In this case, you own Riddlemaster Sphinx and control it. Your opponent gains control of the Sphinx using In Bolas's Clutches clutches, but they do not gain ownership of it. So, when it is returned to its owners' hand, that will always* be you regardless of whether or not you control it at the time.

(*Caveat: There exist some very old cards that allow changes in ownership to occur. These cards are not legal in any format and may actually violate local gambling laws. So, in effect, you will always be the owner of the cards in your deck.)

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