Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Steve Rubin Responds

Steve Rubin has given me permission to post his takedown of my build, which he posted as a comment on Facebook.  See what he had to say after the jump.

You say that each deck has a "plan"- but we managed to create such a plan by putting marginal cards in every deck. It is certainly tough to build from a Sealed pool alone, on the MODO client no less. But we can really do better here I think. I wish you linked a file for me so I could build the decks! anyway here are my general thoughts:
I think the best config is:
  • W/u flier aggro/control: can play multiple roles too. My only problem with this config is the Steppe gliders are a bit worse.
  • U/R control : this deck utilizes all of our colorless lands for Blinding Drones, Maw of Kozilek, Kozilek's Pathfinder, and maybe even Eldrazi Displacer, etc.  I think we have to play this since we want the lands with the <> mana with the drones and this lets us get some value off of it. Also we have many red cards but most of them are generic aggro beaters while UR Devoid control maximizes the best ones (Herald of Kozilek, Tyrant of Valakut, Rolling Thunder, and Kozilek's Return). We are missing a few fatties, but have some super strong spells and every card is great. With Cinder Barrens, we also get to splash Fathom Feeder for "free" if we want. I think it is a slam dunk deck.
  • G/b/? choose your own adventure. The Green and the Black cards suck, but I think there is a big mana combo deck to be made with a heavy creature base, and Vampiric Rites, Zendikar Resurgence, Nissa, and Null Caller being the payoffs.  Soothsayer fits in well with the Green, as does Bone Splinters. Maybe play a few actual Wastes as well, since we are not that color committed to Black, for our 3/3 flash guy and Stalking Drone. It's probably awful but you could play Ruin in their Wake and Walker of the Wastes, which are both super strong. I imagine that this deck is strong since I think it will be quite good against aggro and really slow decks but maybe not so good at the hard hitting midrange flier/good creature decks.
More unorganized notes about your decks and how I would've built:
  • Putting the colorless mana in a blue white deck is sort of a spew, considering none of the white cards benefit other than Displacer
  • Your red white deck is really just a mono red deck, with some random underpowered white cards - it seems absurd to ever want to split a color three ways. Weapon Trainer is only ok, and this deck is not lacking good 2 drops.  The red/white deck has a plan, but it is pretty flimsy. 2 drops, removal, and pump spells.  Without any impactful creatures like the Steppe Gliders or bolster cards for the late game, I am pretty sure this deck is never going to win
  • Even though our White is clearly the deepest, Blue is deep in a different way. It has some strong colorless cards (Blinding Drone, Cultivator Drone, Gravity Negator) that require colorless lands. If we are going to include these lands, we might as well take advantage with other cards that we can use, i.e., Maw of Kozilek or even a potential splash. Also, we have the pleasure of having 2 Coastal Discovery and 2 Roiling Waters! So sick... Can you put all 4 of those in one deck?  Especially what looks like an aggro flier u/w deck?  You can, but splitting those to two different decks creates multiple smooth late game power - and doesn't take up "synergy spots in our deck."  Also, we get to find a home for our Kozilek's Return, no Eldrazi stinks; instead, 3 2 drops with 3 toughness is full diesel.
  • We can also utilize Kozilek's Channler, Rolling Thunder, and Roiling Waters and Coastal Discovery, all of which are good in this deck - notably still leaving enough awaken cards for the Halimar Tidecaller.  You can share colorless sources for the Displacer, OR you can just play the Displacer off of all the common lands and maybe throw in the U/W land, since having a ton of sources is insane with that card, and also with the Maws.  The white deck would be super deep on 3 drops anyways.
  • The UW deck I propose is almost mono white, with just a touch of the extra more u/w type blue cards.
  • It is pretty hard to ignore a color.  Our black is clearly awful, with a straight 70% of it being bad devoid cards and 30% of it being pretty bad Ally cards, though we have a GB dual land, which by itself is great, and a couple of secretly strong options, such as Vampiric Rites and Bone Splinters, both of which are both super strong in any of our Green base decks. Fathom Feeder is great in our control decks. And Malikir Soothsayer is a bomb in any Green or White deck we could make.  UR gives us synergy, and 2 really strong early game blockers in the gold cards.  Also, with the colorless lands plus our Cinder Barrens, we can get our Fathom Feeder into a deck!  Hooray.
  • Our Green is also horrendous.  While we have a few mythics, it is super shallow -- has about 2 gas cards and then the rest is garbo.  I think we might have to go deep, and while the Green deck you made is fine, it really doesn't do anything powerful.  I think it could be a good idea to try a super heavy creature version, where we play Zendikar Resurgence and Vampiric Rites as payoffs.  Now this is obviously ambitous, but I am pretty sure you can potentially play White in that deck if need be, since you will have extra powerful White cards after building only one White deck.  We also may be able to get away with straight GB with just some Unnatural Endurance as spells to combo with our fatties and protect our best cards.

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