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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2016 12:59 pm 
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Rabble, i still haven't tried your demonic flash yet. I'm missing an Infiltrator. Looks like fun though.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2016 1:13 pm 
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Honk honk!

Where was this thread at??

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2016 1:19 pm 
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Rabble, i still haven't tried your demonic flash yet. I'm missing an Infiltrator. Looks like fun though.



CGB recently remarked that the deck has trouble on the draw. Which may very well be a very large weakness. I don't play it much right now, since I enjoy other archetypes, but it was a great deck to meet the new environment head on, and got me a bucketload of free wins, both vs the bad, the ugly, and the stumbling. I still see it often played vs me on steam, and it always requires careful play to not get blown out by; let me know when/if you've put it through its paces :)


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2016 1:46 pm 
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will do, thanks again for sharing it


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 10:06 pm 
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V 1.2
* Added 1x Nissa, Vastwood Seer, 1x Calculated Dismissal
* Removed 1x Jace, Unraveler of Secrets, 1x Bone to Ash

Reasoning: Nissa fits in the same finisher/recurring advantage slot that Jace did, but she's just a better fit. You can cast her without tapping out against control, she draws a card while still being a 2/2 that can pressure, and she can block in aggro where Jace is too slow. Her +1 is slightly worse than Jace, but her -2 might be slightly better; it enables Lambholts. And her ultimate wins on the spot regardless of the board, where Jace's doesn't. Getting threats off the board just isn't as important as keeping the counterspell shields up; whatever you remove with Jace will be replaced with something much worse when you tap out. Also, Bone to Ash is great when it works, but the most-commonly dead card in my hand. Most of the cards we care about countering aren't creatures; we can tussle with creatures. Time to grab one of the next-least-worst counterspell.

---

V 1.1
* Added 1x Jace, Unraveler of Secrets, 1x Forest
* Removed 1x Void Grafter, 1x Bone to Ash

Reasoning: We could use a finisher and a way to get resolved threats off the table; Jace on 7-8 lands seems good. Also, the way we lose the game is stalling on lands; 26 still felt like too few. Void Grafter is the most conditional threat, and Bone to Ash is the most conditional counterspell.

---

Zerris here, feeling a bit silly.

I tried to post a cool deck that relied on flash and powerful creatures to beat down opponents. Not a bad deck, per se, but not quite as good as I'd hoped. Getting stonewalled by 1/1s in front of Walkers was an issue. And then, in the comments, @Goblin Rabblemaster mentioned Wolves. I remembered why I used to hate Simic Decks - all the threats were bad, and the counter magic was inconsistent. That's not really true any more.

So, here's a Wolves deck that I whipped up in under 10 minutes, and started thrashing people with at rank 40 instantly. Pretty untuned, but the concept is so simple that I doubt there are a lot of changes that need to be made. Playing out each turn is also incredibly simple - all the skill is in knowing exactly what your deck can draw, exactly what your opponent's deck can draw, what you can afford to let happen, and what you can't afford to let happen. This should also make it an excellent "baby's first control deck" for new players trying to learn the archtype.

Decklist:

How About No?
(Control)

Threats
2x Sylvan Advocate
3x Duskwatch Recruiter/Krallenhorde Howler
3x Lambholt Pacifist/Lambholt Butcher
1x Nissa, Vastwood Seer/Nissa, Sage Animist
2x Tireless Tracker

Flash Threats
3x Bounding Krasis
2x Void Grafter
3x Pack Guardian

Counterspells
2x Scatter to the Winds
3x Broken Concentration
4x Spell Shrivel
1x Calculated Dismissal
2x Bone to Ash
2x Confirm Suspicions

Lands (27)
10x Island
7x Forest
4x Evolving Wilds
2x Hinterland Harbor
2x Lumbering Falls
2x Westvale Abbey/Ormendahl, Profane Prince

Mana Sources
Enough to cast our spells on curve, blah blah blah. Notably, not enough to cast our threats on curve - at least, not Pack Guardian. But so what? Having our lands come into play untapped matters much more than landing a random threat during the stage of the game where our opponent still has answers. And Pack Guardian is a powerful enough threat and hedge against flooding that I think it's worth playing over Vile Redeemer. Lastly, we would love to get value out of our lands, ideally without the cost of them coming in tapped or getting sacrificed early on - Lumbering Falls and Westvale Abbey help out there as recurring sources of value.


Deck Features

This is a refreshingly simple deck. You'll notice the lack of many things. For example, we have no removal. We have no pump spells, and no combat tricks. There are no spells that just draw cards. The only card costing more than two mana that isn't instant speed is Tireless Tracker, and that card's just busted. Our only situational counterspell is Bone to Ash; the rest can all target anything, and are (almost always) hard counters. No worrying about which countermagic to use on each card they cast; it's all pretty interchangeable. All our threats can win the game on their own. As a result, every card besides the lands is a threat or an answer to a threat. And four of the lands are threats/answers as well. All of our card advantage is built into our cards that do other things - Duskwatch Recruiter, Bone to Ash, and Confirm Suspicions. We're playing a full playset of every card in the deck.

The strategy is also simple, at least in concept. Tap out on turn two for the most powerful creature in your hand for that match-up. Then never tap out again until you hit five+ mana with a counterspell up. Counter everything they play that can't be beaten with 4/4s and 4/5s in combat. Ignore everything that can. We're playing the cheapest most powerful two-drops in the game, so there aren't that many decks that can match their power without casting something more expensive after we stop tapping out. As long as you have one threat that's pressuring your opponent, everything else is disposable. Kill spell targeted at your second creature? That's fine - you just counted a spell with a creature. Don't you feel powerful? Void Grafter will sometimes make that go even worse. Every time your opponent casts a spell, consider carefully whether or not you actually care. Every time you don't care, that's one more real threat you do get to counter.

Of course, that's against midrange/control/ramp. Against aggro, we're playing the cheapest biggest creatures in the format, and we have counterspells for their Gideon, Ally of Zendikar or Archangel Avacyn. They can't use their combat tricks in combat because we counter them and they get blown out. If they cast them pre-combat, we just play around the information on the table. Red decks don't even have inevitability against us; we draw more counterspells than they draw burn spells. And if it really comes to it, Ormendahl, Profane Prince with counterspell backup is a decent plan.

Time to practice saying no.

And that's a wrap...

Relatively simple deck concept, relatively simple deck write-up. Control deck is control-y, go counter some spells.

Image

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If I ever built an Esper Control deck, it would still somehow contain 2x Sylvan Advocate, 2x Tireless Tracker, 1x Nissa, Vastwood Seer, 1x Reclamation Sage, 1x Nissa, Vital Force, and 1x Woodland Bellower.


Last edited by Zerris on Mon May 09, 2016 12:35 am, edited 5 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 11:19 pm 
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I'm also trying my hand at a Simic Flash deck. I pretty much just load up on all of the UG Flash creatures and the most efficient counterspells that Magic Duels has to offer, so I almost always have mana up for counter magic on my opponent's turn. With Dimensional Infiltrator and Vile Redeemer having colorless activated abilities, Thought-Knot Seer & Reality Smasher seemed like a good splash. This also allows us to run Ruins of Oran-Rief to potentially give our flashy devoid guys +1/+1. Playing Void Grafter to save another creature from removal and then making it a 3/5 is pretty sweet. So far this deck has been a lot of fun, and some of the opening hands seem near impossible to beat if you are on the play.

The hardest cuts to make so far have been Tireless Tracker & Woodland Bellower, but I found that they just aren't the right fit for the deck. I was playing Tracker originally, but had a few games where he just sat in my hand because I also had a flash creature and countermagic, and Pack Guardians fit with the theme/strategy better.

The Flash

Creature(24)
2x Dimensional Infiltrator
2x Rattlechains
3x Duskwatch Recruiter
2x Sylvan Advocate
2x Vile Redeemer
3x Void Grafter
3x Bounding Krasis
3x Pack Guardian
2x Thought-Knot Seer
2x Reality Smasher

Instant(9)
3x Horribly Awry
4x Spell Shrivel
2x Scatter to the Winds

Planeswalker(2)
1x Nissa, Voice of Zendikar
1x Jace, Unraveler of Secrets

Land(25)
6x Island
6x Forest
2x Lumbering Falls
2x Hinterland Harbor
1x Woodland Stream
4x Evolving Wilds
1x Westvale Abbey
2x Ruins of Oran-Rief
1x Wastes

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 30, 2016 2:37 pm 
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Hey this is cool, people picking up on this thing. Some thoughts:

I've found that over time, and the decks people play adjusting, that Ormendahl is a bit sketchy in this deck unless you concede to run at least some spawners and rogues. And guys... Whirler Rogue is still an amazing card... If you cut them, then you are better off running other lands imo.

The original idea CGB had in approaching the deck was to go all in flash. Now, Redeemer in this deck, well not in the last list posted, but in both mine and zerri's would be a 3/3 flash. The end. You can't count on him to save you from a whipe. Either you go deep on the counters and the powerfull threats or you go and try to get ormendahl online by splashing more colorless. In my list, Redeemer is a bad excuse for a bounding krasis.
I personally prefer the consistency of the pure approach, with ormendahl being there as a 1 in 50 trump that doesnt cost anything to our mana almost at all, and whilst I feel Zerris's deck is going TOO deep on the counters, resulting in many unplayable mulligans (imho), a good point to be made is that Void Grafter , even though he only has 2 power, survives Radiant Flames and is a BOSS vs spot removal.
He might be a key dude in an evolvng metagame of midrange/control decks trying to answer aggro. (flipping a recruiter whilst they fix their mana, playing a 2/1 flier on your turn, then flashing down a grafter to answer their grasp of darkness, then holding up counters feels pretty sick vs esper).

My original take on the deck, which I think is still very valid, came from testing vs Randomname on Cokatrice before the expansion was released. Recognizing chumps into walker to be a very likely level 1 of our future format, wether it 's in 4c walker control or more classical versions, I opted, and am still partial, to cheap fliers.
This said, I've underplayed the deck after I raced to 40 in the opening week, so I am most likely no the best source to consult on how to build it today. It's a simple archetype and I preferred brewing other decks; but I do think this pile remains strong and relevant; and as Zerris said, a great thing for new players to grasp control/aggro.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 30, 2016 3:14 pm 
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Ormendahl isn't there because it's plan A - it's just an almost-free land that by itself gives us a backup way to win games. I think it's crazy not to play it in almost any creature deck with fewer than four colors, in any metagame. If nothing else, paying 5 for a 1/1 when you don't counter anything is very reasonable. I find I flip it in 20% of my games, usually off Pack Guardian as a way to win a life-point race, while still holding up a counterspell. If it flips with counter backup, it ends the game. It also means that all future sweepers and non-exiling kill spells can be placed in the "don't care" camp, which takes the burden off some counters. In fact, basically anything that doesn't directly kill or tap down Ormendahl ceases to be relevant.

My counterspells are less mulligan-y than most because they're so unconditional, much like the threats. Every hand with 1+ threat, 1+ counterspell, and 3+ lands is keepable (2+ lands on the draw).

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If I ever built an Esper Control deck, it would still somehow contain 2x Sylvan Advocate, 2x Tireless Tracker, 1x Nissa, Vastwood Seer, 1x Reclamation Sage, 1x Nissa, Vital Force, and 1x Woodland Bellower.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 30, 2016 6:41 pm 
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I included the Abbey in my list mainly for one additional colorless mana source. The chance of getting Ormendahl is nice, but I'm not really expecting it to happen and it isn't really part of the main plan. With Vile Redeemer, he is mostly a worse Krasis, but even just a 3/3 flash creature for 3 is good in this deck. Plus, with Ruins I've had him be a 4/4 flash for 4 several times.

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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2016 12:47 pm 
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Zerris wrote:


Agreed! Have given this a couple of tries and find it quite fun to play. Felt scary first couple of times with no removal but you are right about brickwalling early creatures by slamming one of the 2 drops and just countering key spells. Love playing Lambholt Pacifist on T2 on the play. There are just enough creatures to play on their turn so that if they hold their key spells to play around your counters you just add more threats to the board.

Did make one change. Dropped a land and added Nissa, Vastwood Seer. Can come down, flip, with counter magic back up. The few times she has come down I actually just added another threat to the board. Then just drew extra cards.


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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2016 4:32 pm 
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You're right, Nissa, Vastwood Seer does feel good. I think she might just be a better Jace, Unraveler of Secrets - you can cast her without tapping out against control, she draws a card while still being a 2/2 that can pressure, and she can block in aggro where Jace is too slow. Her +1 is slightly worse than Jace, but her -2 might be slightly better; it enables Lambholts. And her ultimate wins on the spot regardless of the board, where Jace doesn't. Making the swap in V. 1.2.

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If I ever built an Esper Control deck, it would still somehow contain 2x Sylvan Advocate, 2x Tireless Tracker, 1x Nissa, Vastwood Seer, 1x Reclamation Sage, 1x Nissa, Vital Force, and 1x Woodland Bellower.


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PostPosted: Mon May 02, 2016 4:28 am 
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I'm growing to become a fan of your decks Zerris. You should start a Youtube :)
And Nissa, Sage Animist has a huge psychological factor too in this deck! Drawing and revealing a counterspell forces your opponent to play around it, leading almost always to suboptimal plays from their side. I'm not even sure this is worse than Jace's +1 :D
The only thing I would maybe change is -1 Calculated Dismissal +1 Horribly Awry or Countermand. Calculated Dismissal becomes useless lategame, Horribly Awry not so much, as the opponent can still draw little ones in late game, and Countermand is just unconditional with the possibility of removing future threats in a preventive matter :)

EDIT: I might also cut two lands for two Natural Connections. 27 lands is just too much, and if you're keeping up counters, but there's no play, you can ramp instead.


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PostPosted: Mon May 02, 2016 10:57 am 
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GNiels wrote:
The only thing I would maybe change is -1 Calculated Dismissal +1 Horribly Awry or Countermand. Calculated Dismissal becomes useless lategame, Horribly Awry not so much, as the opponent can still draw little ones in late game, and Countermand is just unconditional with the possibility of removing future threats in a preventive matter :)

EDIT: I might also cut two lands for two Natural Connections. 27 lands is just too much, and if you're keeping up counters, but there's no play, you can ramp instead.


Note I want to start by acknowledging that I agree that Calculated Dismissal could become a dead card in the late game. However, Horribly Awry seems to favor the early game when you are on the draw. Why do I say that? Well, based on my play of the deck and the concept, the value of the deck is you don't worry about early creatures due to the value creatures it plays on T2 saving the counters for their real threats. The only time this is problematic is the start of T3 when they can play something like Bygone Bishop or Tireless Tracker. With no way to answer the Bishop and the possibility that the Tracker can grow larger than your blockers you might have a problem. Thus a 2 CMC counter that hits creatures when on the draw seems nice. But as a one of the chances of having it are small.

Sure they can play low cost creatures late in the game but more likely than not you will already have multiple creatures in play that outclass or at least push with whatever they put in play. Stopping a late game small creature just does not seem that crucial. Now imagine that your counters on T4+ are Bone to Ash and Horribly Awry against any archetype that wants to slam a walker or resolve a sweeper. Against the mostly played archetypes right now I would not want to be holding a Horribly Awry over Calculated Dismissal in the midgame and even going into early late game. Letting them resolve the small creature late game is worth not letting them resolve something like Gideon, Ob, Chandra, or Sorin mid or late game.

If the opponent is going to sit on their win-cons to play around Calculated Dismissal that is not a bad thing. You are likely adding threats to the board playing flash creatures on their turn or can cast value creatures like Advocate and Tracker with counter magic putting them under pressure. That is the key to making Calculated Dismissal much better. Sure if you draw it when they have 11+ lands on the board it is a problem. However it seems like you have other problems if that is the state of the game as you do not have them under pressure. But your value creatures should be putting them under pressure, they have to try and deal with them forcing them not to play around your counters.


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PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2016 3:21 am 
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Vkandis wrote:
Note I want to start by acknowledging that I agree that Calculated Dismissal could become a dead card in the late game. However, Horribly Awry seems to favor the early game when you are on the draw. Why do I say that? Well, based on my play of the deck and the concept, the value of the deck is you don't worry about early creatures due to the value creatures it plays on T2 saving the counters for their real threats. The only time this is problematic is the start of T3 when they can play something like Bygone Bishop or Tireless Tracker. With no way to answer the Bishop and the possibility that the Tracker can grow larger than your blockers you might have a problem. Thus a 2 CMC counter that hits creatures when on the draw seems nice. But as a one of the chances of having it are small.

Sure they can play low cost creatures late in the game but more likely than not you will already have multiple creatures in play that outclass or at least push with whatever they put in play. Stopping a late game small creature just does not seem that crucial. Now imagine that your counters on T4+ are Bone to Ash and Horribly Awry against any archetype that wants to slam a walker or resolve a sweeper. Against the mostly played archetypes right now I would not want to be holding a Horribly Awry over Calculated Dismissal in the midgame and even going into early late game. Letting them resolve the small creature late game is worth not letting them resolve something like Gideon, Ob, Chandra, or Sorin mid or late game.

If the opponent is going to sit on their win-cons to play around Calculated Dismissal that is not a bad thing. You are likely adding threats to the board playing flash creatures on their turn or can cast value creatures like Advocate and Tracker with counter magic putting them under pressure. That is the key to making Calculated Dismissal much better. Sure if you draw it when they have 11+ lands on the board it is a problem. However it seems like you have other problems if that is the state of the game as you do not have them under pressure. But your value creatures should be putting them under pressure, they have to try and deal with them forcing them not to play around your counters.


If you're not a fan of Horribly Awry, go for the Countermand then ;)


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PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2016 9:56 am 
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2 x Rattlechains
2 x Harbinger of the Tides
2 x Dimensional Infiltrator
2 x Sylvan Advocate
2 x Undercity Troll
3 x Duskwatch Recruiter
3 x Rabid Bite

1 x Nissa, Vastwood Seer
2 x Tireless Tracker
3 x Bounding Krasis
2 x Void Grafter
3 x Grip of the Roil
3 x Spell Shrivel

3 x Whirler Rogue

2 x Guardian of Tazeem
1 x Outland Colossus

9 x Island
6 x Forest
2 x Hinterland Harbor
3 x Rogue's Passage
4 x Evolving Wilds


Playing it at the moment, pretty fun to play, although playing on the draw can be an uphill struggle.

I have probably something around 65% winrate on rank 35-40 Steam (I usually use this deck to get back ranks after playing and losing horribly with some weird decks that don't work).

It's somehow aggressive, and can handle sweepers fairly well with some counters and flashy creatures. I experimented with Pack Guardian, but never seemed to have spare lands in my hand for this card to show its real value.


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PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2016 10:57 am 
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It feels like Counter-Wolves needs a touch of bounce for those pesky early drops, which managed to fly under your counter-screen. How do you feel about a couple of Disperse or Harbinger of the Tides? I think this would also help with mulligan decisions.


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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 9:51 am 
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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 9:53 am 
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Vkandis wrote:
Agreed! Have given this a couple of tries and find it quite fun to play. Felt scary first couple of times with no removal but you are right about brickwalling early creatures by slamming one of the 2 drops and just countering key spells. Love playing Lambholt Pacifist on T2 on the play. There are just enough creatures to play on their turn so that if they hold their key spells to play around your counters you just add more threats to the board.

Did make one change. Dropped a land and added Nissa, Vastwood Seer. Can come down, flip, with counter magic back up. The few times she has come down I actually just added another threat to the board. Then just drew extra cards.


I almost always get a T3 transform on Lambholt Pacifist.
The lack of removal and combat tricks feels a little precarious, but definitely makes up for it with tight control.

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PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2016 1:05 pm 
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Hi All!

I ran against a Simic deck someone was using in Duels that I thought had a core of a really great idea. I took what I saw from his deck and ran with it, and it's not only pretty effective, but a blast to play.


Monster Ego

Creatures
2x Thing in the Ice
2x Sylvan Advocate
2x Duskwatch Recruiter
2x Sylvan Ranger
1x Nissa, Vastwood Seer
2x Primal Huntbeast
2x Altered Ego
2x Cyclone Sire
1x Greenwarden of Murasa
1x Gaea's Revenge
2x Plated Crusher

Spells
3x Disperse
2x Displacement Wave
2x Gather the Pack
2x Scatter to the Winds
2x Spell Shrivel
2x Catalog
3x Nissa's Pilgrimage
3x Explosive Vegetation


Lands
8x Island
10x Forest
2x Lumbering Falls
2x Westvale Abbey/Ormendahl, Profane Prince


So, basically a ramp simic deck, but there’s some fun synergies in this. The obvious goal is to get to one of the big boys as fast as you can, but the ramps work nicely to get a Thing out quickly as well. Since Simic lacks the easy removal that the other colors have, this deck relies on bounce to clear the deck, so Thing works well there. With the land pumpers (Sylvan Advocate, Cyclone Sire, Scatter to the Winds), I’ve made my Lumbering Falls 6/6 or more…and who can argue with a gigantic hexproof beast that can’t be swept by Planar Outburst? The real joy, though, comes in knowing three turns in advance that your opponent has no chance. After a nice ramp, put down the Crusher, then next turn Alter Ego him as far as you can go, then take out any last-ditch sweep spells with your counters.

I’m not completely happy with the functioning of the deck yet, but it is a whole lot of fun to play. Lemme know what you guys think.


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PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2016 9:11 pm 
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Call me crazy, but I'm suspicious of your 22 land Plated Crusher deck. The first thing I'd do is cut some cards to add 4-5 lands. Also, the lack of the best card in Duels - Tireless Tracker - confuses me.

From a playmaking standpoint, I'd advice against putting counters on Lumbering Falls. it doesn't have hexproof unless you activate it, and you don't want to have to leave up four mana every turn to keep from getting your manland blown up when you could be diversifying your threats.

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If I ever built an Esper Control deck, it would still somehow contain 2x Sylvan Advocate, 2x Tireless Tracker, 1x Nissa, Vastwood Seer, 1x Reclamation Sage, 1x Nissa, Vital Force, and 1x Woodland Bellower.


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