Thursday, July 12, 2012

1000 Shards

I'll just say it up front, I love, love this deck. I named it after the Isis song, because I use glass beads for tokens and I figured that I'd have a ton of them glittering on the table.
7 Island
7 Forest
4 Yavimaya Coast
2 Simic Growth Chamber
2 Llanowar Reborn
1 Oran-Rief, the Vastwood

3 Gaea's Skyfolk
4 Simic Initiate
4 Cytoplast Root-Kin
4 Aquastrand Spider
2 Vigor
3 Spike Feeder
2 Spike Drone
3 Fungal Behemoth
3 Plaxcaster Frogling

2 Slice in Twain
1 Mystic Melting
3 Mirrorweave
3 Keep Watch
I came up with this deck at the end of the Ravnica block, after reading an article at Star City Games, where the author described a possible situation where, by turn 4 you've swung for 13 points of damage minimum, using the Graft mechanic from the Simic guild.That just seemed awesome to me and it was an idea that everyone was was (and continued to) ignore. So taking that skeleton (from one Ted Knutson, I believe) I went about building it.

Originally, there were Cytoshapes in there instead of Mirrorweave-the replacement done for what I hope are (or will become) obvious reasons. The Mirrorweave is a bit of an off beat for me: I prefer to have all the colors I need to cast a spell, so this would go into a U/W deck by my traditional thinking. However, it's too good to ignore what that card does for this deck and so I suck up the UU costs and go with it.

Here's how it works: because the counters are added on when the creature enters the battlefield and the official power/toughness is written as 0, when the game asks: What is this creature's P/T? the answer is: It is a 0/0 with X +1/+1 counters on it.

But when I Cytoshape a creature into a copy of mine, the game doesn't copy counters, it copies the base power and toughness of a creature so the game asks what P/T the copy is, the answer is: Zero (unless there are pre-existing counters on the creature.)

With that knowledge and a love of swinging for 20 on turn 5, I set to work

Now, the Simic guild existed a couple years before Mirrorweave and Vigor, so this deck has been evolving, of course. I don't recall what I had in place of Vigor or Fungal Behemoth but they gave me much better creatures, to be certain. The Spike Feeders have always existed in this deck: they've proven worthy in the past, Spike Drones were brought in when I realized I wanted to have more one-drops and worry less about what my opponent was doing. There were most likely Thrives in this deck at one point a card I really like but can't seem to make work and 1000 Shards was no exception.

I'm fairly certain that this week's updates will include axing Simic Guildmage for something more effective and finding a cheaper solution to Slice in Twain: I just wanted something that would draw me cards. Which leads me to my next subject.

Someone might be asking; why Keep Watch? I wanted to emphasize both what this deck does (attack with creatures) and blue does (instant speed card draw.) I can also use Keep Watch when opponents are attacking, including one memorable time when I cast it to draw into a Mirrorweave that I then cast to annihilate my opponent's army. The most important thing though is that Keep Watch rewards me for doing what I want to do here, refilling my hand and allowing me to keep quickly rebuild my offense if my opponent draws into a board wipe.

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