Man it's been awhile since I've written an article for you guys and for that I apologize. I've just been busy and contemplating what I want to do with my life because I feel as if I haven't accomplished enough thus far. I'm not talking about accomplishments in Magic but rather accomplishments in life. I feel like I've done pretty well for myself in the Magic world but not in the real world. I don't have a real job and my income is pretty sporadic.
I've also been debating if I want to continue playing professional Magic and if I should travel to more or less events. As of right now I've just gone to very few tournaments but I feel as if I need to go all in and go to many tournaments or decide now that I don't want to live that kind of life for the next X years. All this is still up in the air for me; maybe I should try and get a job with the awesome folks StarCityGames.com. I just want a job that is Magic related and pays regularly.
I have also been busy working on the Custom Cube Project with Justin Parnell; it's been going well and should be done before the end of this year. It's been very exciting to work on that project but that's another article entirely. I know you guys aren't here for my problems but I just wanted to let you know what's been going on with me. So thanks for hearing me out. :]
Moving on... I've been keeping an eye on which decks have been doing well in Standard and I'm as sick of Delver as you guys probably are. I recently played RUG Ramp at a local 1K and made Top 8. I wanted to test the deck so I figured a 1K would be a decent place for that. It was a blast to play! I recommend switching to ATT if you're having bad service with Verizon...
So take your normal turn then an additional turn and after that take their turn? Cute? Pfffffff… It's not cute; it's awesome! That's why my nickname for this deck is ATT (All The Turns).
Let's talk about some of the lands. I started out with two Cavern of Souls and almost immediately went up to four. I know not all decks play Mana Leak but the best deck does so you kind of need it. I just wish I could fit four Caverns and four Glimmerposts in the maindeck. I don't see that happening if I'm not playing mono-green. You only need one Kessig Wolf Run and one Inkmoth Nexus to have the option of poisoning your opponent so that's all I played. Also Kessig Wolf Run is usually just good enough.
You may want to cut Alchemist's Refuge but I really liked it. Flashing in a Primeval Titan end of turn against decks playing Day of Judgment or Oblivion Ring is really nasty especially if you have a couple of Temporal Mastery or Mindslaver in your hand. Another thing to note about Refuge is that you only have to activate it once to give all your spells flash that turn. You don't need to do it for each spell; this usually doesn't matter I assume but in a ramp deck it does—you get to points where you have so much mana you can cast a Titan and another six-drop or planeswalker in the same turn.
In the tournament I never needed to kill anyone with the Nexus plan so you could cut that package and attempt to fit the Glimmerposts. It's a bit greedy but they are just so good in the metagame right now. I didn't play Desolate Lighthouse in this list because I felt like I was splashing red and didn't want another colorless land. I'm pretty sure I was wrong about that; it probably wouldn't hurt the mana base too much to add another colorless land. The upside of said land is pretty big.
After the tournament I felt like the decklist was off in some places. I wanted some number of Whipflares or Mana Leaks and to cut down on the number of Mindslavers and Temporal Mastery by one. They were great against the control decks not running countermagic but you were fine against them already. This deck also performed well against the other ramp decks thanks to Tamiyo.
Tamiyo acted as an Acidic Slime; she could lock up their Primeval Titans shut down utility lands or just draw you some much-needed cards. If you ever used her last ability you could do some silly things like Mindslaver lock your opponent. I never really saw the Frost Titans but they seemed good in theory or at least in conjunction with Tamiyo. It should be one of the better Titans against Delver since it gets around Sword of Feast and Famine. Also if you played it at the right time you could lock up a land and stop them from Vapor Snagging it. I'm not sold on the icy Titan so it could get the axe!
The sideboard was an absolute mess. I should've had some number of Karns in the 75 along with Zealous Conscripts or Thrun the Last Troll. I was late for the tournament so I threw together a quick sideboard. I did like the Glimmerposts though. Against decks that weren't running counterspells it allowed me to trade my Caverns for Glimmerposts and against aggressive decks like G/R Aggro or Zombies you really want that life gain!
With the changes here is what the deck looks like.
The changes are minor here but I think they make a big impact. Four Whipflare is where I want to be right now especially since it's pretty much Day of Judgment against many of the aggro decks. Bonfire can be a little slow but with the addition of Whipflare they are better since you don't have to rely on them so much. Before you really needed to miracle Bonfire but now you can draw it early and set it up to blow out your opponent's board.
I've also added the Desolate Lighthouse we were talking about. I thought about Buried Ruin; it would allow us to kind of run three Mindslavers still or rebuy a Solemn Simulacrum or a destroyed Batterskull. That being said it's not relevant enough for me to run. Batterskull shouldn't get destroyed one Mindslaver is usually enough and rebuying a Solemn Simulacrum isn't very exciting.
We could about run Wurmcoil Engine over Batterskull but having your lifelink creature come down a turn earlier could mean life or death. You can argue that we can make Wurmcoil Engine uncounterable but against the decks where you really need the lifelink spell they won't be playing Mana Leaks. The only exception to that is Delver but they also have Vapor Snag to deal with either one and in that situation I'd rather have Batterskull anyway.
The sideboard has some unique choices. For one why am I running Sword of Body and Mind instead of Sword of Feast and Famine? Well both are really good against Wolf Run Ramp and G/R Aggro but Body and Mind is better against Delver. Shutting off Vapor Snag and making 2/2 Wolves is pretty relevant.
Timely Reinforcements: A card that can buy us some much-needed time. All a ramp deck needs is time really.
Venser the Sojourner / Stonehorn Dignitary: We could also play this little combo and shut off many aggressive decks especially ones of the non-blue variety. Even those decks could be shut off if they don't have the right answer.
Entreat the Angels: A solid win condition; one of the main reasons I want to play this deck.
Gideon Jura: An all-star of a planeswalker; he also works really well with Tamiyo!
Tamiyo the Moon Sage: Speaking of Tamiyo this card just continues to impress me. We will have some copies of her for sure.
Blue Sun's Zenith: A nice card draw spell for a ramp/control deck.
Garruk Relentless: Another decent planeswalker that can act as removal if need be. I like Primal Hunter more but we have enough five-drops for now.
Solemn Simulacrum: I feel like this little robot is a good addition in any deck running X spells. He ramps you gives you a decent body and eventually draws you a card.
Primeval Titan: Another sweet card to have with X spells but I'm not sure if he is necessary.
Here is a skeleton of the four-color deck!
This deck is untested and that's why I don't have a sideboard for it yet. I have the 2/2 split on Sorin and Garruk because I'm not sure which one is better. I also believe Alchemist's Refuge would be pretty sweet but I'm not sure if the mana base is stable enough to run another colorless land. It's probably fine in conjunction with Rampant Growth and Solemn. I will test this deck and get back to you guys. If you play it let me know what your thoughts and experiences are!
Thanks for reading guys and gals; I'll catch you later!