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BMoor's Magic The
Gathering Deck Garage
August was a rough month for me, and Scars of Mirrodin was a rough block. The original Mirrodin block held sentimental value to me, and seeing the Mirrans lose the war just to bring back villains from before I started playing was a major blow-- for a while there, I lost hope in Magic. After all, what's the point of following the stories if the villains never definitively get beaten, and the heroes do? I do apologize for the long wait in between articles, but here's hoping I can live up to my Internet handle and "be more" available in September.
At any rate, now that the full Mirrodin block is released, and Innistrad is confirmed to not have any major mechanics involving counters, I feel I can give this deck the fix it deserves.
I made a deck recently that I find to be a lot of fun, but it feels like it could be better. I was reading the daily pojo and I realized that I should send this into the Garage, and I chose you since you've always seemed the harshest/most impartial when it comes to judging cards. Here's the decklist in order of converted manacost.
However, the main problem I have with the deck is that it's pretty slow. Like, really slow. Mana is never a problem due to the three Chalices and proliferate/Surge Node/Voltaic Key, but setting everything up takes forever; often, I end up winning just from the Thopter Tokens killing the other player off (or just losing flat out). Could you help me fix this problem? I'm thinking of maybe switching out Triskelion and/or the Titan Forge? I tried adding infect, but it took up too much room and it never really worked out; maybe 2 decimator webs will help? Help! I need to cut out the unnecessary "fat" and fix this deck! (Note: I'd like to stay within Extended, or at least all new format cards)
I've wanted to do this fix for quite some time, not least of all because I played a similar deck at my local FNM for quite some time. The difference was that I ran white as well as blue in order to use Luminarch Ascension and Ajani Goldmane alongside Thrummingbird, which was hilarious every time I got it off. But I'm guessing that Nick doesn't want to add another color to this, and I don't blame him, so I won't add white.
But just like I used proliferate to power up Ajani, I think you'd do well to use it to power up Jace, Memory Adept. Jace's ultimate may not look too good on paper, but consider that he can use his zero ability to make your opponent Glimpse the Unthinkable every turn, without spending loyalty, and your proliferation will help keep Jace out of range of your opponent's ability to burn it out. Or, you can use him as a draw engine.
I also think, if you want to speed up your deck, you should take out some of the bigger cards that are loading up the high end of your deck. In fact, I'd take out the Treasure Mage package entirely-- Contagion Engine is the only 6+ artifact I'd leave in. I know that you'll have the mana for it once your Chalices and such get going, but still, you have to keep an eye on your curve. Especially since Everflowing Chalice is about to rotate out of Standard-- I'm not sure if that bothers you, but if it does, the mana in this deck is about to get a lot tougher. And if Pentavus and Thopter Assembly are coming out, Throne of Geth should also come out, since you have no easy way of accumulating expendable artifacts.
In their place, go to a full four of both Trinket Mage and Chimeric Mass. Chimeric Mass makes an excellent win condition, for much of the same reasons as Dread Statuary-- it can't be hit by removal spells unless you've activated it. Don't be afraid to drop an early Mass and let it proliferate to power-- just because it's an X spell doesn't mean you should wait until it's too late to do any good to cast it.
Elixir of Immortality is another card I think you need. Honestly, there are very few decks that wouldn't benefit from a copy or two of the Elixir, but yours is especially well-suited for it, given that you're already running Trinket Mage. It also "combos" well with Jace, if you think you'd like to try and win through milling, and it puts dead Masses and Mages back in your deck.
And to replace Throne of Geth, I recommend Viral Drake. Not only is the Drake a fairly easy way to get that first poison counter onto an opponent, but it also makes a good blocker, and its proliferate ability is repeatable, which means you could, with sufficient mana, swing for one poison counter and then proliferate nine more onto your opponent in one turn! If you keep the Chalices in, I'm sure Viral Drake will quickly earn its place in your heart, and then infect it.
Finally, I think Phyrexian Metamorph would be a good card to consider, letting you have redundant copies of your most vital artifacts. Sure, most of your good cards cost less than four, and copying Chimeric Mass is a poor play without a Surge Node, but the fact that the Metamorph can copy your opponent's best stuff too makes it a card to take a look at.
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Magic the Gathering Deck Fixes