Scalding Tarn (Modern)[Article] - Winning my way into Modern.

Discussions about the Modern format

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Post #81 by Valdarith » Thu Dec 26, 2013 5:05 am

With four Snapcasters would 19 land be okay? I'd cut the Lighthouse in that case since I need colored land most with absence of fetches. I could get away with 12 creatures if I ran the full set of Remand, Visions, and Probe. That's 12 cantrips right there.
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Post #82 by Alex » Thu Dec 26, 2013 5:40 am

I think the problem I see arising is that you're basically stranded between a rock and a hard place. Here's why:

At what point are you no longer playing a Delver list and instead playing the 30-removal spell URw deck? You know, the deck with the dreadful combo matchup but the absurd creature matchup? Because killing people with Celestial Colonnade doesn't seem too far out of the wheelhouse at this point.

When I played Delver it was based around 1-mana cantrips (which you are playing worse versions of) and the ability to keep your opponent off of relevant blockers for six consecutive turns. This worked because 1drop removal was basically worthless due to the presence of Mental Misstep. If you had the Misstep for their turn 1 removal and had the Mana Leaks to follow it, you locked your opponent out of the game for five turns and they just lost.

That being said, I'd consider your direction. Of course, this is
just an observation.

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Post #83 by Khaospawn » Thu Dec 26, 2013 2:41 pm

I'm with Alex. I'd rather play Runechanter's Pike over the Chimera. It's nice to have evasion, but in my experience, a swarm of Elemental tokens is just as good. Equip one, swing, equip after combat to a token for a blocker. Lather, rinse, repeat.
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hamfactorial » Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:41 pm wrote:In a pinch, Khaos' beard can help turn this around.

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Post #84 by Valdarith » Thu Dec 26, 2013 4:54 pm

I see what you're saying Alex. I hate not having Ponder and Preordain, and I thought about Delverless Delver too but came to the same conclusion: why am I not just playing Tempo Twin or UWR control? I could fork the extra 40 for Splinter Twin and play without fetches, Cryptics, and Cliques, but the Cryptics seem like a necessity for the deck so I'm probably going to stay away for now.

Here's an updated list with a completely thrown together sideboard.

[deck]
Creatures (12)
4 Delver of Secrets
4 Snapcaster Mage
4 Young Pyromancer

Spells (29)
4 Serum Visions
4 Gitaxian Probe
4 Lightning Bolt
3 Vapor Snag
2 Spell Pierce
4 Remand
3 Mana Leak
2 Izzet Charm
2 Runechanter's Pike
1 Electrolyze

Land (19)
4 Steam Vents
4 Sulfur Falls
2 Mountain
9 Island

Sideboard (15)
2 Dispel
1 Electrickery
2 Annul
1 Negate
2 Combust
1 Counterflux
2 Hibernate
3 Molten Rain
1 Electrolyze
[/deck]
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Post #85 by Alex » Thu Dec 26, 2013 7:49 pm

For UWR you can play more removal in place of Cryptic Command. My room mate plays Slagstorm and Bonfire of the Damned in the Cryptic slots since he doesn't have them, and the deck seems to play just fine. It makes him soft to combo, but you can play Counterflux or Mindbreak Trap and fix that out of the sideboard.

Let me go find his deck, brb.

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Post #86 by Alex » Thu Dec 26, 2013 8:08 pm

Just kidding, I guess he removed them and added Supreme Verdict instead, but for curious parties:

[deck=Jake's UWR]
Creatures (4)
4 Snapcaster Mage

Instant (23)
1 Aurelia's Fury
3 Electrolyze
2 Izzet Charm
4 Lightning Bolt
3 Lightning Helix
3 Mana Leak
3 Spell Snare
2 Sphinx's Revelation
2 Think Twice

Sorcery (4)
2 Supreme Verdict
2 Pyroclasm

Planeswalker (2)
2 Ajani Vengeant

Artifact (1)
1 Batterskull

Mana (26)
4 Celestial Colonnade
4 Arid Mesa
4 Scalding Tarn
1 Boseiju, Who Shelters All
2 Ghost Quarter
3 Hallowed Fountain
2 Island
1 Plains
1 Mountain
1 Sacred Foundry
3 Steam Vents

Sideboard (15)
1 Crucible of Worlds
2 Spellskite
2 Stony Silence
3 Counterflux
1 Chalice of the Void
1 Mindbreak Trap
1 Chandra, Pyromaster
1 Jace, Memory Adept
2 Sowing Salt
1 Pyroclasm
[/deck]

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Post #87 by Valdarith » Thu Dec 26, 2013 8:21 pm

Yeah and 8 fetches. No go for me.

I'm still messing around with Pike vs no Pike. Came up with this for a no Pike list.

[deck]
Creatures (12)
4 Delver of Secrets
4 Snapcaster Mage
4 Young Pyromancer

Spells (30)
4 Gitaxian Probe
4 Serum Visions
4 Vapor Snag
4 Lightning Bolt
2 Pillar of Flame
2 Spell Pierce
1 Dispel
4 Remand
3 Mana Leak
1 Izzet Charm
1 Electrolyze

Lands (18)
4 Steam Vents
4 Sulfur Falls
2 Mountain
8 Island

Sideboard (15)
1 Dispel
2 Forked Bolt
2 Annul
2 Essence Scatter
2 Combust
1 Counterflux
3 Molten Rain
2 Turn / Burn
[/deck]
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Post #88 by Alex » Fri Dec 27, 2013 8:36 am

What is the Pillar of Flame for, exactly? Kitchen Finks? Could probably just be a better spell. Flashfreeze comes to mind for the board in that matchup. Counters Finks, Birthing Pod, and Kiki Jikki.

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Post #89 by Valdarith » Fri Dec 27, 2013 3:24 pm

It's for Finks and Voice which are a pain for this matchup. I could play a better burn spell in its place. Also thought about Flashfreeze in the board so I'll make some room for it. I'm not totally sold on Molten Rain with the RR cost in a fetchless deck and this deck ought to already have a favorable tron matchup.
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Post #90 by Valdarith » Sat Dec 28, 2013 12:31 am

I guess Pillar should be Runechanter's Pike. Gives me huge game against Soul Sisters and Wafo-Tapa UWr, the former of which this deck could have issues with and the latter of which has issues dealing with artifacts.
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Post #91 by Khaospawn » Sat Dec 28, 2013 2:53 pm

I've always enjoyed a 2/2 split between Pillar and Burst Lightning.
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hamfactorial » Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:41 pm wrote:In a pinch, Khaos' beard can help turn this around.

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Post #92 by Valdarith » Sat Dec 28, 2013 3:12 pm

Can you share your list, Khaos? I'm debating exactly how much removal I should pack.
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Post #93 by Khaospawn » Sat Dec 28, 2013 7:33 pm

I'm at work, going from memory, so here it goes :

[Deck]
Creature 12
4 Delver of Secrets
2 Grim Lavamancer
3 Snapcaster Mage
3 Young Pyromancer

Weapon 2
2 Runechanter's Pike

Spells 28
4 Lightning Bolt
2 Pillar of Flame
2 Burst Lightning
2 Vapor Snag
4 Serum Visions
4 Gitaxian Probe
2 Thought Scour
4 Mana Leak
2 Remand
2 Spell Pierce

Land 18
4 Scalding Tarn
2 Misty Rainforest
3 Steam Vents
1 Sulfur Falls
2 Mountain
4 Island
2 Mutavault
[/deck]

Trust me, there's plenty of room for tweaks.
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hamfactorial » Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:41 pm wrote:In a pinch, Khaos' beard can help turn this around.

Col. Khaddafi » Thu Jul 04, 2013 6:02 pm wrote:I rarely skip a Khaospawn wall of text because I know there is always piss at the end of the rainbow.

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Post #94 by Valdarith » Sat Dec 28, 2013 7:48 pm

How have you liked Pike? I keep second guessing myself on it with running 18 land.

I keep wondering what the best number is for burn spells. I have also read the majority of the UR Delver thread on Sally and there seems to be little consensus on anything. Some are high on Magma Jet, others use Spellstutter Sprite instead of Young Pyromancer. I think they're just playing a different deck entirely since most of them play 22 lands and only 22 spells.
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Post #95 by Khaospawn » Sat Dec 28, 2013 8:11 pm

Pike is pretty much how I've been winning against aggro and Goyf decks. I'll stabilize at a low life, and as long as I can protect YP$, I can just cantrip /counter / burn my way into making a little army. Swing with a +10/+0 token to make a big clock, re-equip to a second token to defend, and then repeat the steps on my next turn. The Pike gets better with access to Thoughtscour.

Basically, I started with the concept of recreating the old U/W Delver decks, but with Red. YP$ is almost like your Moorland Haunt - your way to help stabilize and make a body for the Pike.
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hamfactorial » Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:41 pm wrote:In a pinch, Khaos' beard can help turn this around.

Col. Khaddafi » Thu Jul 04, 2013 6:02 pm wrote:I rarely skip a Khaospawn wall of text because I know there is always piss at the end of the rainbow.

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Post #96 by Valdarith » Sat Dec 28, 2013 9:19 pm

Nonbo with Pike and Lavamancer is concerning. I also question Burst Lightning in a deck with 18 lands. This is what keeps me moving toward Magma Jet. Two damage for two mana is not good but scry two late game seems so big to me.
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Post #97 by Khaospawn » Sat Dec 28, 2013 9:28 pm

Its not really a nonbo. Lavamancer usually just eats lands, dead creatures, etc. The thing with burst lightning is that it's usually 2 damage early, but late game it's not hard to hit for 4. I've even snapped one back for 4 damage - yes, I had 7 lands.

However, I've considered bumping up to 20 lands to ensure that happens more often.

Thoughtscour is really good too for adding fuel to pike and lavamancer.

Don't play scared, dude. Try this shit out. Even if you only get a +3-5 bonus from pike, it's worth it. The first strike is a tremendous bonus.

And for what it's worth, I actually don't like Magma Jet that much. If I HAD to run it, it'd simply be as a 2-of.
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hamfactorial » Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:41 pm wrote:In a pinch, Khaos' beard can help turn this around.

Col. Khaddafi » Thu Jul 04, 2013 6:02 pm wrote:I rarely skip a Khaospawn wall of text because I know there is always piss at the end of the rainbow.

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Post #98 by Valdarith » Sat Dec 28, 2013 9:52 pm

What I'm thinking now.

[deck]
creatures (12)
4 delver of secrets
4 snapcaster mage
4 young pyromancer

spells (30)
4 serum visions
4 gitaxian probe
4 lightning bolt
2 spell pierce
4 vapor snag
4 remand
3 mana leak
1 izzet charm
2 magma jet
2 runechanter's pike

lands (18)
4 steam vents
4 sulfur falls
2 mountain
8 island

sideboard (15)
2 dispel
2 forked bolt
2 combust
1 counterflux
3 hibernation
2 electrolyze
3 open slots
[/deck]
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Post #99 by Khaospawn » Sat Dec 28, 2013 9:58 pm

Tell me how your testing with Izzet Charm goes. I didn't like it.
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hamfactorial » Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:41 pm wrote:In a pinch, Khaos' beard can help turn this around.

Col. Khaddafi » Thu Jul 04, 2013 6:02 pm wrote:I rarely skip a Khaospawn wall of text because I know there is always piss at the end of the rainbow.

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Post #100 by Valdarith » Sat Dec 28, 2013 10:00 pm

I figured it would be a decent one of to kill dudes, counter spells, or filter my hand late. It could always be Electrolyze but I'm trying to keep the curve low preboard.
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Post #101 by Khaospawn » Sat Dec 28, 2013 10:05 pm

I think it's bad. At least it was for me. It always boiled down to being an overpriced Spell Pierce or Creature-only Shock. Plus the RU mana made it hard for me to do other Red-based things.
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Post #102 by Valdarith » Mon Dec 30, 2013 3:01 am

Ordered my Remands and Serum Visions yesterday. Hope they get here by Friday, but if not I'll just run Thought Scours and Grim Lavamancer. ;)
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Post #103 by Alex » Mon Dec 30, 2013 4:37 am

If all else fails, you could always try out Leering Emblem.

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Post #104 by Valdarith » Mon Dec 30, 2013 5:53 pm

Kinda has a Kiln Fiend feel with a toughness boost too. It pushes me to cast spells during my turn though which is not really what the deck wants to do outside of Visions and Probe.
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Post #105 by Alex » Mon Dec 30, 2013 6:08 pm

Pushes the deck closer to Infect in playstyle, but 'tis sweet nonetheless. We've been doing a LOT of testing with Double Cleave this week, trying to find ways to make the card insane. Thusfar we've played it in UG Infect, UR Delver and a UR KilnClops build.

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Post #106 by Valdarith » Mon Dec 30, 2013 6:22 pm

I like that Double Cleave can double (lol) as removal in UR Delver.

I could take a more aggressive approach to the deck and run stuff like Kiln Fiend or Nivix Cyclops. It would just be less tempo and more of a tapout strategy. Do you have the KilnClops list? If I don't get my Remands and Serum Visions in time I might have to go a different route.
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Post #107 by Khaospawn » Mon Dec 30, 2013 6:35 pm

Kilnclops just seems bad in Modern without Ponder and Preordain.
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Post #108 by Valdarith » Mon Dec 30, 2013 9:16 pm

I actually think it's not too bad.

[deck]
Creatures (15)
4 Nivmagus Elemental
3 Snapcaster Mage
4 Kiln Fiend
4 Nivix Cyclops

Spells (26)
4 Lightning Bolt
4 Gitaxian Probe
4 Faithless Looting
4 Artful Dodge
4 Assault Strobe
4 Mizzium Skin
2 Apostle's Blessing

Lands (19)
4 Steam Vents
4 Sulfur Falls
3 Island
8 Mountain
[/deck]
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Post #109 by Alex » Tue Dec 31, 2013 2:22 am

Khaospawn » Mon Dec 30, 2013 12:35 pm wrote:Kilnclops just seems bad in Modern without Ponder and Preordain.

We played a version where the deck basically revolved around cantripping. Full four-of Manamorphose, Gitaxian Probe, and Serum Visions. Also played Ideas Unbound on the turn you planned on going off. The rest of the spells were pump spells and protection spells. It was bad against control but absolutely insane against creature based decks and storm. We played a bunch of games in the Scapeshift matchup and he (playing this deck) killed me (on Scapeshift) on turn 4 pretty consistently. I imagine the Tron matchup is very similar, although we don't own the deck so we didn't try it out.


[deck=Double CleaveClops]
Creatures (8)
4 Kiln Fiend
4 Nivix Cyclops

Instants (15)
4
Apostle's Blessing
4 Double Cleave
4 Manamorphose
3 Mutagenic Growth

Sorcery (15)
4 Artful Dodge
4 Gitaxian Probe
3 Ideas Unbound
4 Serum Visions

Mana (22)
2 City of Brass
4 Island
4 Mountain
4 Scalding Tarn
4 Steam Vents
4 Sulfur Falls

Sideboard (15)
4 Delver of Secrets
4 Electrolyze
3 Mana Leak
4 Remand
[/deck]

We had some fun with it. No idea if it's competitive or not since we were just playtesting it pre-boarded, but it was certainly an amusing deck.

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Post #110 by Valdarith » Tue Dec 31, 2013 2:34 am

I like Assault Strobe over Double Cleave here since if you don't have the Artful Dodge they're going to block regardless of what you do. One less mana is big.

I was going to suggest Mizzium Skin but you have so many damn cantrips that finding multiple dudes shouldn't be a problem.
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Post #111 by Alex » Tue Dec 31, 2013 2:37 am

You would think that about them blocking, but a lot of the time if they don't see at least 2 spells in your main phase, they just assume you're not about to go off and take it to the face. There were a lot of games where he would swing at me with a 1/2 Fiend, and I'd be like "Okay" and by the end of the exchange I had taken 14 damage. It was irritating because it basically became "Okay does he have the Double Cleave...?" It's awkward to be on the receiving end of that unless you're holding counters.

Creature based decks can't sit there losing trades, so it's rough for them, too. Like yeah, they might block you, but if they aren't trading with you, you're basically getting free draw steps to sculpt your hand.

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Post #112 by Valdarith » Tue Dec 31, 2013 4:14 am

I goldfished my deck a bit in a few different iterations.

1) I tested with and without Magma Jet and really preferred the deck with Magma Jet. It just made my draws so much smoother and in a format dominated by x/2s it is basically a hard counter against creature decks. Even against an empty board it's never a dead card. It's not quite Electrolyze but it's good enough.

2) It's either Grim Lavamancer or Runechanter's Pike. Despite not having fetches I usually had a full grave for him to use, and he's nuts against aggro but terrible against control and combo. Pike is good against aggro and control but bad against combo. I'm wondering if I should mainboard Pikes and side in Lavamancers vs decks like Affinity and Jund. The fact that Pike dies to Abrupt Decay makes me not want it in the Jund matchup.

3) 28 spells for Delver is really nice. Blind flips are good.

4) I'm not going to run this deck without Serum
Visions. I could do it without Remand and in that case I'd probably run Electrolyze and another couple of spells in its place.
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Post #113 by Valdarith » Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:44 pm

http://www.mtgtop8.com/event?e=6355&d=236588

This list 4-0d a daily a few days ago. Pretty similar to what I'm building but with Lavaman instead of Pike.
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Post #114 by Valdarith » Sun Jan 12, 2014 5:13 pm

Carlos Moral just made top 4 in GP Prague with UR Delver beating Junk. Looks like he's running something very similar to my list except with Grim Lavamancer instead of Runechanter's Pike.
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Post #115 by Khaospawn » Sun Jan 12, 2014 7:07 pm

Valdarith » Sun Jan 12, 2014 12:13 pm wrote:Carlos Moral just made top 4 in GP Prague with UR Delver beating Junk. Looks like he's running something very similar to my list except with Grim Lavamancer instead of Runechanter's Pike.

I saw that too! lol
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hamfactorial » Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:41 pm wrote:In a pinch, Khaos' beard can help turn this around.

Col. Khaddafi » Thu Jul 04, 2013 6:02 pm wrote:I rarely skip a Khaospawn wall of text because I know there is always piss at the end of the rainbow.

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Post #116 by Alex » Sun Jan 12, 2014 7:47 pm

I love how close that list was to the Standard version of the deck.

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Post #117 by Valdarith » Sun Jan 12, 2014 8:41 pm

http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/A ... /welcome#1

It's actually scary how close his list is to mine. The spell suite is almost exactly like mine down to the numbers. Two maindeck Pillar of Flame, full set of Remand, three Vapor Snag, two Spell Pierce. The differences are that he's running two Clique and one Lavamancer maindeck and two Mutavault to go up to 20 land. Oh, and no Mana Leak. I don't like that.
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Post #118 by Valdarith » Sun Jan 12, 2014 8:55 pm

Of course 3/4 of the deck is mostly locked in...
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Post #119 by Khaospawn » Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:07 am

There was another list posted in the event coverage that was 4 cards off from my deck. It played mana leak. It just wasn't playing Pike or Burst Lightning. Instead it played an extra land, a Clique, and some Spell Snares.
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hamfactorial » Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:41 pm wrote:In a pinch, Khaos' beard can help turn this around.

Col. Khaddafi » Thu Jul 04, 2013 6:02 pm wrote:I rarely skip a Khaospawn wall of text because I know there is always piss at the end of the rainbow.

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Post #120 by Valdarith » Mon Jan 13, 2014 3:17 pm

The thing I like most about this deck is that all my opponents are playing Modern and I feel like I'm playing Legacy.
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