These are a few of the games I’ve played with the deck this week.
4 man Sharuum, Sapling, Glissa, Treva
I have a mana flood start (sometimes keeping that all mana hand doesn’t work out!) and hide behind Sapling, poking my head out only to kill any infect creatures I can’t block as Glissa flies out of the blocks. Treva, despite having the numbers and an active Vedalken Anatomist, chooses not to block Glissa and eats Tainted Strike & a boost to get knocked out. Worst still he was poisoned to exactly 10 so using the Anatomist at any time during the attack would have left him at a precarious 9 but still alive. Tel-Jilad Fallen & boost did for Sharuum who had no removal in hand. I hit VT straight after Sharuum was eliminated which gave me a Damnation to clear the table. I proceeded to draw into Artisan of Kozilek -> E-Wit -> Nim Deathmantle and stalled Glissa’s short recovery for a couple of turns before I could DT for Ulamog. Glissa never really recovered from the Damnation and the Eldrazi finished everything at the bell.
3 Man Sapling, Treva, Rayne
On a mulligan to 5, I hit Sol Ring which allowed for a turn 4 Primeval Titan. Rayne had an extremely slow start and Treva didn’t find removal. Left to his own devices, PT ensured it got silly quickly. That one didn’t last very much longer.
3 Man Sapling, Treva, Sharuum
Rayne audibled into Sharuum and I kept a 2 lander with Sakura Tribe Elder and Cultivate. Right on queue I drew Primeval Titan. Treva had a tapper for a few turns to lock down Primeval Titan but it ended up dead to an evoked Shriekmaw and the game got out of hand after that.
Apparently an unanswered Primeval Titan is good. Who knew?
3 Man Sapling, Treva, Sharuum
I keep Stronghold, Swamp, Urborg, Coffers, Avenger of Zendikar, Cultivate, Damnation and, of course, didn’t find a Green source for a full 7 turns. Despite sticking Sapling out there, I was beaten down to 10 before finding a forest and stabilizing. There were a couple of dead turns where Sharuum could and should have forced the issue as he had Akroma’s Memorial in play.
My Cultivate allowed Acidic Slime on the Memorial. I follow that with Rampaging Baloths and drop Deserted Temple to make a 4/4 Beast token. A very lucky series of top-decks gave me Mosswort Bridge which hid away a Decree of Pain and made another Beast. The previous turn’s Deserted Temple untapped Bridge straight away to allow me to cast Decree directly, drawing 12 cards and leaving Sapling alone in play. In the 12 was Creeping Corrosion which crippled Sharuum and it snowballed from there into an eventual Genesis Wave for 24. Deserted Temple on Cabal Coffers with Urborg in play is slightly unfair.
Sharuum was really ticked off that he didn’t press when he could have. You snooze, you lose. ;op
5 man Sapling, Treva, Sharuum, Rayne, Merike Ri Berit
Rayne & Treva had sworn revenge on me for beatings the previous 2 days so I was forewarned. I mulliganed all spells keeping only 2 land (High Market, Overgrown Tomb) and drew Maelstrom Pulse, Cultivate, Shriekmaw and Mimic Vat. I decided to keep this as it’s a very good hand with just 1 additional land. Of course I didn’t draw that land right off.
I drew Praetor’s Council. I drew Ulamog which I discarded at EOT. I drew Oracle of Mul Daya & discarded Praetor’s Council. I drew Spiritmonger and discarded it. Merike is as mana screwed as I am but manages to fire off a turn 5 Balance to slow everyone else down to our level. I peel a Stronghold on turn 5 and get some land. Find and pay a Necrogenesis, then hung about for a bit clearing out some graveyards. Despite a very active Rhystic Study and a couple of turns with a Consecrated Sphinx backed up with Reliquary Tower, Rayne isn’t doing anything particularly impressive. Treva gets a slow start and refuses to play anything into my Shriekmaw/Mimic Vat. Sharuum keeps playing huge beasts and keeps losing them. It’s all very scattered. The game kind of limps on for a few minutes and time is called with no real loser (maybe Rayne as he’s got less than 30 cards in his library). I must have missed a pile of decent Mimic Vat triggers in all that time: Consecrated Sphinx, Primeval Titan, Clone, Emperium, Gilded Drake, Sun Titan. I got too focused on removing them with the Necrogenesis rather than putting them in the VAT. Worse still, I had enough mana to recur Shriekmaw with Stronghold to reset the vat and remove the offending creature with Necrogenesis afterwards. It was a thoroughly abysmal display on my part.
We’re done for the week so it’s time for some changes. I need more land and more coloured land so I'm going to increase both counts by 1:
1 Ulamog/Kozilek. (One Eldrazi is probably enough for all my Eldrazi needs.)
1 Ezuri, Renegade Leader. (It says Elf! ELF!!!!! :facepalm: )
1 of Wasteland/Stripmine (I only need one and I need coloured mana more.)
1 Mana Reflection (Yes, it’s excellent but my mana at the moment has more issues getting from 1 to 6 rather than from 6 to 12. It’s a necessary cut.)
In (the list is currently):
1 Dual (Golgari Rot Farm? Reflecting Pool? Exotic Orchard? Pine Barrens? Just going on what I own, I’m not overly enamoured with the choices.)
1 Life from the Loam
1 Crucible of Worlds
1 Kamahl, Fist of Krosa
1 Skeletal Scrying
1 Black Sun’s Zenith (This could be a real bonus as I have no outs to Sharuum’s Darksteel Forge and he's mostly creature/combat based.)
1 Filth (This was in my first incarnation. It was cute though not sure I want it here. Thanks for the reminder Marcus, I’ll keep it in mind.)
This is the last in this particular series (initially intended to have been a single post but you know how it goes!) I'll post the final changes and any major issues in the comments and, as always, you're all very welcome to chime in. If you can think of a way to allow me to get around Darksteel Forge, I'd be happy to hear it.