Tuesday, November 29, 2011


This deck's name is taken from the fantastic NoMeansNo song, mostly 'cause I can.
4x Counterspell
4x Deprive
4x Sunder

12x Forest
11x Island
1x Oboro, Palace in the Clouds
4x Serum Visions
3x Summer Bloom
4x Explore

2x Meloku the Clouded Mirror
4x Skyshroud Ranger
3x Dirtcowl Wurm
4x Vinelasher Kudzu
So what does this do? Pump out a bunch of land, drop Dirtcowl Wurm or Vinelasher Kudzu and then cast Sunder. Meloku is there as a backup device, generating 1/1 flyers and providing the air attack should the big dumb monsters on the ground prove to be less than adequate.

For the longest time, this deck was all about getting to the mid-late game; the addition of Vinelasher Kudzu helped give this deck some early gas but this is one of those decks that, despite its synergies, wants to cast one big spell and win. If it doesn't get it's big spell, it is possible to win on the back of a large Vinelasher backed up by countermagic, but it's more difficult. Still, better to have a plan than no plan.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

In madness you dwell

OK, it's been a little while so a link back to the Thing That Should Not Be, as a refresher for readers.

I'm playing against B/W humans again. It's not going well. Thingy is getting overrun by Champion of the Parish. Aggro decks; is there a plan here?

There is; Play Mimeoplasm, remove two Dearly Departed and have a 10/10. That should make things interesting. And then the program crashes. OK, that happens.

Do over: I have Chancellor and Tome Scour, with an Island in my opening hand and yeah, I mill for 12. But no love comes my way afterward and I die to large humans swinging.

Sigh. This deck needs some more disruption, specifically creaturekill.

So new changes:

-4 Jace Archivist: removing because of the UU in the casting cost, truthfully. In a three color deck, especially ones with out a 'bridge' color and lands that support it (such as the Lairs of Planeshift) or very expensive lands, double color requirements can be backbreaking. Chancellor is UUU and that tweaks the entire manabase but I feel it's worth it as a Mimeoplasm target or, if hardcast, a swinging effect using the opponent's deck against them.

-2 Gravedigger; I just don't have as many targets as I'd like for this.

+3 Tolarian Winds for the draw, +3 Doom Blade for creaturekill. Let's move on!

My next matchup is against a U/R Equilbriium deck with Kobolds and Storm Entity/Grapeshot to try and win. I get out three Looters and despite going through over a third of my deck, get a whole lot of nothing in terms of action. The milling effects are working though: if I can survive 10 more turns I can pull this out.

Stonewood Invocation arrives though and I don't have to. Still, an ugly, drag out way to win.

Game two has the glory of a revealed Chancellor of the Spires in my opener and a difficult choice on turn two: Do I cast Tolarian Winds and draw a fresh set of 6, or do I keep the hand and go with the glory that is a Mind Funeral and Mimeoplasm in hand? I decide to stick it out with the Mind Funeral and hold back. The deck I'm facing hasn't shown to be speedy or disruptive enough so ditching a good hand doesn't seem wise.

I end up eating 3 on turn 4 from a Storm Entity and I still have a full hand and my opponent's graveyard is full of terrible things to copy so I cast Winds, draw 5 and on my next turn, cast Tome Scour to mill another five cards (getting a Kobold!) and casting Gravedigger to get back The Mimeoplasm.

After taking another 3, I play the Mimeoplasm to get myself a 8/10 flying Chancellor, cast Ponder from my opponent's graveyard and draw a Doom Blade. At this point I feel like I've got the game wrapped up...and then he throws down 4 Kobolds, Grapeshot, Grapeshot, I eat 11 and die.

Eh, it happens. But fuck, if Storm isn't the worst card mechanic they've ever done. (Transform taking a close second.)

The second matchup highlights one of the problems I've been having with Thingy: It's very reliant on my opponent's stuff: if I mill Kolbolds or Disenchants, these are not spells or creatures that are worth removing/recasting. They don't make for scary Mimeoplasms or solid Chancellor effects. My own efforts to ensure that my Mimeoplasms are badass may not be enough.

So it's on to the final match! I take the play and lead with a Looter and start drawing, discarding and seeing what I can get. A second Looter comes while my opponent has T1 Ponder, T2 Ponder, Ponder. So I may need to hurry this up.

I can't hurry it up fast enough and the Storm combo takes me. The details escape me, though I do remembering thinking: I need a Doom Blade, because a 20/20 Storm Entity is coming soon.

Sometimes, I hate being right.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Briefly out

I'm moving and don't know when my internet/life will return. I figure about a week, then I'll be able to resume Tues-Thurs posting again!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Crystalized Thought

Sometimes reading through articles on Magic is good brainfood. The competitive edges that players try and work through don't exactly apply to my metagame but they do help solve mental problems. For example, this article at Channel Fireball contains this gold nugget:
Now, when I come to Jon with a list, the first thing he asks me is, “What do you want to beat?”
Dead on. No deck or strategy can beat everything and I don't use sideboards, so the question is: What strategy is this deck meant to beat. 

It is why I have created a mental subcategory of decks called "Jason decks"; ones that are meant to defeat his strategies (frequently milling or thievery ones.) When I don't play a Jason deck against him and I lose, I take what I can and learn from that. When I win and I do so because of a well executed strategy, not because of bad/good luck, then maybe I'm onto something.

However, I need to view all my decks this way: What is this meant to beat? The answer to that question takes a bit of the sting out of a loss when I'm playing a strategy that is just flat out unworkable given my opponent's strategy. That doesn't excuse bad play or poor decisions but it might allow me to remove a bit of ego from the equation and see situations for what they are, instead of just feeling bad because I lost.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Game situation: Sensei's Top telling me Plains, Plains, Swamp is in my future, while I'm facing double Ankh of Mishra. So things are bad.

I have a Seal of Cleansing on the board to take care of something, only question is what, of course.

Then the worst happens; I shuffle my deck when I meant to draw. This fucks the whole game really. There's no way for me to properly reset things-you can't un-shuffle a deck (although it wouldn't be a problem if the Shuffle and the Draw commands weren't right next to each other...design fail!)

I'm given a forgiveness token and we just keep going.

It's good to play with friends.