I had a lot of trouble figuring out what deck I should play for my video this week. Everything feels so played out that I just thought everything would be boring. I didn't even know what I could build around that would be original.
In desperation, I scoured Magic Online Daily Event decklists and just saw the same old things over and over. And then, somehow, inspiration struck. I was looking at the control decks, and I thought it might be interesting to try a different approach.
The deck I'm going to play with today is based, as so many of my decks are, on an interaction I've had come up a few times in M13 Limited.
Specifically, I'm trying to get to a late game where I have a lot of mana and an Archaeomancer, an Elixir of Immortality, and a Diabolic Revelation. Three cards that don't see much (if any) Constructed play.
With those cards in my deck, I can cast Diabolic Revelation for Elixir and Archaeomancer and whatever threat or answer I need, then Archaeomancer my Revelation back, and then Elixir everything back. Then I can just do it all again, giving me unlimited access to every card in my deck.
The other thing that I'm doing differently is that I'm using Sign in Blood, Divination, and Augur of Bolas instead of Think Twice, Forbidden Alchemy, and Snapcaster Mage. This allows me to draw more cards for less mana to increase the velocity of my deck and lets me play Grafdigger's Cage, an excellent answer to undying, which is normally a problem for U/B decks. It also means that in the late game, I can get a deck that's densely packed with card draw by using Elixir, which wouldn't happen if I had to exile all of my card draw spells to get an advantage from them.
The primary reason that this is good to do now when it wasn't before is this: the advantage to the flashback card draw spells is their instant speed, but in a format where counterspells are less reliable, moving the entire deck to sorcery speed makes a lot of sense.
So here's the deck I'm playing:
Before recording, I played a few matches with this deck to make sure it worked. I beat Mono-Black Control, Delver, Mono-Green Aggro, R/G Post, and Mono Red Stuffy Doll. I'm pretty sure I didn't lose to anything, so my initial results have been promising, but I don't know how things will go when I'm actually recording. Let's find out.
At this point I'm happy with my results, but it occurs to me that I'm probably very bad against Zombies. Without moving into white, which would basically be a different deck, that's a difficult problem to fix, but I'm going to try adding some Vampire Nighthawks to my sideboard in case I play against them and see how bad it actually is. I'm cutting one Phantasmal Image, one Gut Shot, and one Mutilate. I'm also cutting the other Mutilate for a second Black Sun's Zenith.
It also occurs to me that the Archaeomancer could be a second Diabolic Revelation and allow the same end game, which means the blue is really only in this deck for Augur of Bolas and card draw/library manipulation. While I think it's correct to include blue for that, it's noteworthy that two Diabolic Revelations and an Elixir of Immortality is a hugely powerful end game for any black control deck.
Well, it's definitely awkward that two of my game wins in these four matches were due to my opponents misclicking, but I still think the matches did a great job of demonstrating what I was trying to do with the deck. It certainly exceeded my expectations. I'm honestly tempted to go to SCG Open Series: Minneapolis to play this deck, when I wasn't planning to go yesterday.
Thanks for watching,
@samuelhblack on Twitter