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BMoor's Magic The
Quest for Ula's Temple is one of those cards that,
you don't think it's any good, it just puts a smile on your
face. It's flavorful, it lets you pound down with the
biggest, baddest, bluest creatures in Magic (more amusing
since Blue doesn't usually do big nasty creatures), and it
has that brass ring of being able to plunk down a free
creature at the end of every turn just taunting you to try
and break it. And remember, it triggers EVERY turn, not just
at the end of your turn. You could drop down a big blocker
at your end step, then drop another one down at your
opponent's end step to swing with.
First, the Jwar Isle/Tar Pit issue. A point of life could be
useful, but anyone who's played with Genju of the Falls will
tell you that the Tar Pits are the much better play. I also
want you to take out Halimar Depths and replace it with
Islands, since you're going way heavy on lands that enter
the battlefield tapped. Also for another reason I'll explain
in a moment.
You see, to maximize the Quest for Ula's Temple, you need
plenty of creatures in your deck. I'm concerned that your
deck's creature percentage isn't quite high enough. To
remedy that, I want you to take out Essence Scatter. When
you've got Inkwell Leviathan, Wrexial, and Nemesis of
Reason, you aren't really afraid of any of your opponent's
creatures. It's their kill spells you want to be able to
counter, and since Shriekmaw and Nekrataal aren't
Standard-legal, Negate should cover you just fine. In those
extra slots, I want you to put in Serpent of the Endless
Sea. Since you already plan to Spread your Seas over to the
other guy's side of the table, the Endless's drawback is not
really an issue, and it gets bigger with every Island.
But if you feel that Halimar Depths is important enough for
you to keep in your decklist, then instead replace Essence
Scatter with Lorthos, the Tidemaker. He's not really that
much more useful than the Endless Sea, but his size isn't
tied to your lands, and if you get to eight mana and have
nothing to spend it on, you could make a very suitable alpha
strike with it.
Usually this is the part of the article where I rattle off a
bunch of other suggestions that might be neat, to give you a
smörgåsbord of options, but sadly, your deck wants to be
creature-heavy, specifically heavy with Serpents, Krakens,
Leviathans, and Octopi, and there just aren't enough in
Standard to add any more. Lorthos and Serpent of the Endless
Sea were basically the best ones you're not already running.
After that maybe Shoal Serpent, which is just a 5/5 that
becomes a Wall when you stop drawing lands, and Steelclad
Serpent is just too bad for me to recommend with a straight
face. So I guess this article is wrapping up early.
Good luck, Geoff! And to everyone else out there, remember:
if you have a deck in need of a once-over, a comment or
question about my articles, or just want to tell me you got
the Edgar Allen Poe reference in this article's title, send
it to firstname.lastname@example.org,
and you might end up in the operating theater for the rest
of my audience to learn from!
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