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Pojo's Book Reviews



05.31.02  -  No Rares Deck Fix

2 leaf dancer
2 druid lyrist
1 nantuko mentor
1 kronan archer
1 basking rootwalla
1 rabid elephant
1 gorilla titan
1 springing tiger
1 spined wurm
1 pygmy pyrosaur
1 serpintine karvu

3 blazing salvo
4 explosive growth
4 firebolt
2 engulfing flames
2 elephant ambush
2 beast attack
1 roar of the wurm
1 disorder
1 moment's peace

13 mountain
12 forest

i just started so i don't have that many cards


I haven't done a fix in awhile with no rares in it... so I thought this would be a good opportunity.  With most constructed decks costing an average of 100 dollars or so these days... finding a good deck that can win without costing an arm and a leg is really a sweet deal for anyone on a budget (like me).

The one thing that immediately came to mind while trying to jump start the red/green deck that was sent to me was Madness.  Red and Green together got hands down the best Madness spells out of Torment.  In fact they are all very playable in constructed... and they just happen to all be common or uncommon!  Lets take a look...

Basking Rootwalla
So good this guy would be played even if he didn't have the Madness alternate cost.  Rootwalla is the best one drop beat-stick in magic today... the fact that he can be played ABSOLUTELY FREE anytime you have to discard is just friggin' nuts.

Fiery Temper
Lightning Bolt was broke.  Incinerate was too powerful.  At 1RR, Fiery Temper is still an excellent 3 damage variant.  The ability to deal 3 damage to either a creature or opponent at instant speed is just about as flexible as you can get... and that's why Lightning Bolt and Incinerate are no longer in print.  While still a deal at 1RR, we'd rather only have to pay just R... and that's all that needs to be paid to cast Fiery Temper thanks to madness!

Arrogant Wurm
At 3GG, Arrogant Wurm is just another well costed 4/4 trampler.  Trample is good since R/G have very few other means of evasion... Trample will allow you to ignore that Squirrel Nest chump blocker your opponent has.  While 4/4 tramplers are good... having to pay only 2G is once again a whole lot beter.

Volcanic Eruption
4 mana + 4 damage split anyway you like at instant speed= efficient.
Unfortunately that 4 mana consists of three red mana... which can be tough to come up with while playing a 2 color deck.  Thankfully with madness Volcanic Eruption is even more efficient as it cost the much more managable 1RR!

OK, so now that we know how good Madness is... how do we actually go about casting these spells with their madness cost?  The most efficient way is of course Wild Mongrel.  Yet another common... Wild Mongrel is simply in my mind the best 1Gcc creature ever made.  Wild Mongrel allows you to discard a card from your hand to pump the mongrel +1/+1 and change his color to anything you want.  When adding Madness spells to the mix this ability quickly becomes broken.

Upon seeing this your opponents will immediately scramble to deal with Mongrels as soon as they show up (which actually is pretty tought all by itself).  When they do you need a backup plan to use your Madness spells effectively.  The new common Barbarian Bully from Judgment works quite nicely I've found.  This bully works very much like mongrel as it allows you to discard a card for free to pump him up +2/+2!  This discard is chosen randomly however, unlike the Mongrel where you get to pick what to discard.  Another efficient way to fuel Madness is the uncommon enchantment Narcissism.  This enchantment lets you pump a creature by paying G and discarding a card of your choice.  Not only does this again fuel Madness... but it can make your Arrogant Wurms HUGE as they get nice and big and smash your opponent over the head for the win.

So anyway... here's what I'd play:

4 Llanowar Elves
4 Basking Rootwalla
4 Wild Mongrel
4 Barbarian Bully
4 Flametongue Kavu
3 Arrogant Wurm

4 Firebolt
4 Fiery Temper
2 Narcissism
3 Volcanic Eruption

14 Mountain
10 Forest

The deck essentially builds itself... I added Llanowars for more speed to make the cheap madness costs seem even more brutal.  Not only is Flametonge uncommon... it's one of the best red cards currently available.  This deck is gonna operate like any other good r/g deck... lay threats and beatdown quickly while using burn to either clear the attackers path or to just finish the opponent off. 

Finally, while I haven't found the best way to abuse it yet, Browbeat is another non-rare that is just begging to be abused that could be used if you can't find some of the other cards I've recommended.

Hope this helps... have fun!




Copyright 2001 Pojo.com


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