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ktkenshinx
01-11-2010, 07:44 PM
On September 19, 2009, Dream Halls came off the Legacy banlist. The card had been legal in Magic Online Classic, and resulted in no problems there; the assumption was that it would be safe for Legacy. It might even spawn some new decks. Everyone knew the enchantment was powerful (it had been banned for years in Extended and Legacy), and it had been some time since anyone built a successful Dream Halls deck for competition. Indeed the idea itself was consistently condemned on the forums as unrealistic, slow, and inconsistent. Yet, after much testing, debate, argument, and research, a number of new cards and interactions were found that interacted brilliantly with the Halls. This proved to be enough to bring Dream Halls from the casual box into the coveted card slots of tournament decks.

The end result was a powerful victory on January 2, 2010. In Frankfurt Germany, on day 6 of the 7 day Magic Marathon that was German Magic 1, Jonas Harbili piloted a Dream Halls deck to victory. The particular build was created by Harbili's, friend Marc Tobiasch, who, at the last moment, elected to play a different deck. Harbili took Tobiasch's Dream Halls all the way. With 270 competitors, over two dozen unique archetypes, and attendance from across the continent, the tournament was a major event. And Dream Halls took the top prize. Here is Harbili’s list.

Dream Halls
By Jonas Harbili
1st Place, Day 6 Legacy at German Magic 1, January 2 2010

Lands: 17
3 Ancient Tomb
4 Flooded Strand
5 Island
1 Polluted Delta
2 Scalding Tarn
2 Underground Sea

Creatures: 5
1 Bogardan Hellkite
4 Progenitus

Instants: 12
4 Brainstorm
4 Force of Will
4 Lim-Dul's Vault

Sorceries: 19
4 Conflux
3 Cruel Ultimatum
4 Ponder
4 Show and Tell
4 Thoughtseize

Artifacts and Enchantments: 8
4 Dream Halls
3 Lotus Petal

Sideboard: 15
1 Hydroblast
2 Meditate
1 Rushing River
4 Spell Pierce
2 Duress
3 Propaganda
2 Pithing Needle

An impressive list for an impressive win. Before explaining individual card choices, I will explain how the combo itself works for those that do not immediately see it.

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Basic Deck Strategy

1. Get Dream Halls in play.
2A. Discard something to cast Conflux
2B. If you don’t have Conflux, discard something to cast Lim Dul’s Vault and cast a spell to draw Halls.
2C. If you don’t have LDV, then you should not be comboing yet.
3. With Conflux, find 1 Progenitus (Green card), 3 Cruel Ultimatum (Black, Blue, and Red cards), and 1 Conflux (White Card).
4. Discard Progenitus to cast Conflux 2, finding Hellkite, Thoughtseize, FoW.
5. Discard Hellkite to cast Ultimatum number 1. (5 life loss)
6. Ultimatum 1 returns Hellkite to hand. Discard Hellkite again to cast Ultimatum number 2. (10 life loss)
7. Ultimatum 2 returns Hellkite to hand. Discard Hellkite again to cast Ultimatum number 3. (15 life loss)
8. Ultimatum 3 returns Hellkite to hand. Discard Progenitus to cast Hellkite. (20 life loss)

This is the basic way the combo can work. You can always alter the order or find other cards as needed, but the fundamental operation will remain the same. If you are concerned about instant speed graveyard removal (A Crypt or Relic, for instance), which will kill your discarded Hellkite, then you can alter the combo process.

1. Get Dream Halls in play.
2A. Discard something to cast Conflux
2B. If you don’t have Conflux, discard something to cast Lim Dul’s Vault and cast a spell to draw Halls.
2C. If you don’t have LDV, then you should not be comboing yet.
3. With Conflux, find 1 Progenitus (White card), 2 Cruel Ultimatum (Blue and Black cards), and 1 Bogardan Hellkite (Red Card) and 1 Conflux (Green card).
4. Discard Progenitus to cast Conflux.
5. With Conflux find 1 Cruel Ultimatum and 4 Progenitus.
6. Discard Progenitus 1 to cast Ultimatum 1. (5 life loss)
7. Discard Progenitus 2 to cast Ultimatum 2. (10 life loss)
8. Discard Progenitus 3 to cast Ultimatum 3. (15 life loss)
9. Discard Progenitus 4 to cast Bogardan Hellkite. (20 life loss)

Back this up with FoW and Thoughtseize, and find your combo pieces with aggressive Brainstorming and Pondering, and you will be well on your way to some turn 2-4 wins in no time.

Alternately, you can always simply use Progenitus as a beating win condition, whether cast using Dream Halls, or dropped into play as early as turn 2 (or even 1) with Show and Tell. This makes the deck slightly more versatile than other combo decks, as it effectively as two different combo-based win conditions.

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Card Choices
THE MAINDECK

(Now, before I explain the card choices in Harbili’s deck itself, I must offer some words of disclaimer. There is no universally agreed upon deck list. Harbili’s interpretation won a major event and brought hope to Dream Halls players everywhere. But it is not flawless and it is not above criticism and revisal. This is the case with many decklists, but it is very noticeable with Dream Halls.
I have attempted to explain Harbili’s probably reasoning for using these cards in his deck. I have not spoken with him, and my reasons may not be his, and may simply be inadequate. But that is the point of discussion and refinement. )

Ancient Tomb: Accelerates Dream Halls and Show and Tell, allowing for a much faster clock. On occasion, can be risk in a tight Aggro matchup, especially against Zoo. Harbili’s build only runs 3 because Tomb can only cast 8 of his spells (Show and Tell, Dream Halls).

Islands: The deck is extremely resilient to Wasteland, owing to its 5 Island manabase. In many games, it does not even need Underground Sea, or Ancient Tomb, to win.

Lotus Petal: There are a number of contenders for this spot, Chrome Mox, Mox Diamond, and Dark Ritual being the frontrunners. Each has serious problems that Petal does not share.
Chrome Mox causes card disadvantage. That is particularly bad in hands where you don’t actually have your combo, and you have to pitch a draw or protection spell to get some mana. This leaves you vulnerable to counters or hate, and/or can slow you down in the long run.
Mox Diamond forces you to run extra lands to be most effective, and Harbili’s build (running only 17) does not really fit that bill.
Dark Ritual is powerful, but it costs B and adds BBB. If it cost U and added UUU, it would assuredly be in the deck. But Ritual increases your reliance on Underground Sea, which in turn makes you more vulnerable to Wasteland. Moreover, the only time that you would be able to maximize your mana gain is with Dream Halls itself. Casting anything else would not require Ritual; even with a Ritual, the earliest you could cast Show and Tell is still turn 2 (which you can do with a Petal anyway).

Bogardan Hellkite: The dragon serves multiple purposes in the deck. First, it pitches to cast Ultimatum in the first of the 2 combo processes I described above.
But Hellkite is also a viable Show and Tell target. If you need an extra turn or 2, a quick Hellkite can hold the line long enough for you to cast Halls, Ultimatums and then swing for the win.
Finally, Hellkite lets you circumvent Meddling Mage (if ever you see him…), Gaddock Teeg, and other cards that might prevent the Ultimatum path from working on its own.

Conflux / Dream Halls: Harbili’s build adheres to the combo philosophy of full-playsets. Every important combo card comes in 4’s. This increases consistency, but also decreases overall card slots.

Show and Tell: Enables the turn 2 win in some games, greatly aids the turn 3 win, and provides an alternate win in the form of Hellkite (if necessary). Redundant “mana acceleration” in most cases; between this, Petal, and Tomb, you are almost guaranteed to get Halls out before turn 4. An overall excellent card in the deck.

Brainstorm / Ponder: Quick, cheap, digging. Both pitch to FoW. Brainstorm hides combo pieces from probing discard spells. Probably the best ratio of cost to digging in all of Legacy (unless you are feeling lucky with Spoils of the Vault). Harbili likely considers these superior to comparable draw spells like Impulse, Accumulated Knowledge, Diving Top, etc. because Brainstorm/Ponder work faster and get more immediate returns. For his build, which is intent on speed, this is more important than the increased digging of Impulse, or the synergies of Top.

Lim-Dul’s Vault: Harbili decides to use the classic UB tutor instead of cards like Enlightened Tutor, Grim Tutor, Rhystic Tutor, redundant draw, etc. There are some strong cases to be made for Vault. For one it pitches to FoW, unlike any of these other cards. Second, it finds anything that you need, not just Halls. This is a limitation of Enlightened Tutor, for instance. If you need Show and Tell, a sideboard card, a FoW, etc. then LDV becomes much better.
It trumps Cunning Wish because it actually finds Halls itself (and Show and Tell for that matter). It also can be considered better than Grim Tutor owing to its cost. By turn 3, especially if on the play, Dream Halls should be casting its winning cards, not sacrificing a valuable Lotus Petal to cast the Tutor on turn 2. Tutor also loses some of its punch without Ritual, which Harbili did not choose to include. Finally, the 3 extra life loss of Tutor can be fatal in matches where you already are using Tomb to accelerate, FoW to counter a spell, and Fetchlands to grab your Islands.

Force of Will: Harbili is using a blue combo deck. FoW will be included. Period.

Thoughtseize: The 1 CC black sorcery disruption slot certainly belongs in this deck. But the question remains: Duress or Thoughtseize? Some players prefer Duress. After all, most threats are non-creature, and the 2 life loss can be very dangerous in aggro matchups (more on this to come). Is Thoughtseize warranted?
Thoughtseize handles 2 threats that Duress cannot touch. The first is Pridemage. If you don’t have FoW in the early turns of the game (which you probably won’t, given that you only have 4), then it helps to have additional assurance against the enchantment wrecking Lion. If you don’t, then you have to get redundant cards in your hand to counteract the Pridemage’s effect. This can slow you down at least a turn or two, which is lethal against Zoo.
Thoughtseize also slows down the opponent’s clock. If you are having a subpar start, or if your opponent is having a good one, preventing a turn 2 Goyf drop can be critical in keeping you alive until you can drop the Halls. Similarly, in Enchantress, taking out Argothian before she hits play can help stall the opponent until you can get your own combo online.
That said, 2 life can be a lot. If you are already losing about 3-6 life (from FoW, Fetch, Toom, and LDV), then the additional 2 life loss can put you too close to burn danger. Or attack danger. I will discuss more of this later (the self-inflicted damage), but for now, trust me that it can be a problem.
Duress can be a suitable replacement, but only if you are budget minded and confident that you will not face too many Pridemages/will be able to outrace opposing decks.

THE SIDEBOARD
Hydroblast: Additional anti-burn countermeasure. Similarly useful against a fast Goblin clock. Replace a Thoughtseize with a Blast, as in most cases, they will have the same end effect, although without the life loss (I acknowledge that Blast won’t nuke an artifact, but if you are boarding in Blast at all, then that is not your worry).
-1 Thoughtseize, +1 Hydroblast

Meditate: Boarded in against decks with a slow clock, especially Landstill and Stax decks. The card advantage is worth the wait, as your opponent is unlikely to be able to come up with a counter to your 4 additional cards in their one extra turn. When you are 5 cards richer at the beginning of your next turn, you will be more than ready to both combo out and defend your pieces. Also, the 3 CC is helpful to circumvent Chalice and Counterbalance.
Vault is less useful in these matchups. For one more mana you can get 4 more cards. The 2 CC of Vault is also a liability with Chalices and Counterbalances roaming around in these matchups (and Spell Snares, for that matter). Meditate circumvents all of these problems.
Additionally, Meditate is a strong answer to discard. If your hand gets hit hard by any number of disruption spells, Meditate lets you refill. The cost of a turn is unimportant, given that you are likely to win the moment you untap and enter the main phase.
-2 LDV, +2 Meditate

Rushing River: Sometimes you just need to bounce something. Or two somethings. Whether a threatening Pridemage, a billowing Stax, or an early Reanimator target, River gets the job done. Take out a Thoughtseize for the River, as they will often accomplish the same task. You would not want to board in River against a deck that had more instant threats than permanent threats anyway.
-1 Thoughtseize, +1 Rushing River

Spell Pierce: Wins the counter war for you against the midrange UG decks (and Merfolk, for that matter). Also extremely early as disruption against fast combo like Belcher and ANT. When adding cards like Pierce and Duress, you want to use the “little off the top” boarding strategy; taking out a single copy of cards here and there to gain additional weapons.
-4 (Permutation of Petal, Vault, Show and Tell, Progenitus, etc.), +4 Pierce

Duress: If your opponent is playing green then you can expect Krosan Grip in games 2 and 3. Use a similar “off the top” boarding strategy to get all of the Duress into your deck.
Same as above

Propaganda: Most of the time you want to race your opponent. But against Dredge, Goblins, or Zoo, you might want the extra few turns of life that Propaganda buys you. Similarly effective against Enchantress, if they get their angel tokens online. This is a tougher card to board in, as you are acknowledging that you are slow against a fast deck, as opposed to Meditate where you accept some slowness against a similarly slow deck. Moreover, your opponent will still have cards that you need to take out with Thoughtseize and Duress (Grip in most cases). I would not board in this card in most matchups and would rather try to race.

Pithing Needle: Pridemage answer, pure and simple. If Pridemage hits play then this is your only solution. Has a host of other tangential applications, but its defeating Pridemage is at the top of your list.
-1 LDV, -1 Progenitus, +2 Needle

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Advanced Deck Strategy

In this section, I will discuss some of the nuances of the Dream Halls deck. These are strategic points that apply to all matchups, and are good to consider no matter who you are playing against.

The Mana Base: Here are your chances of getting a certain number of lands in your opening hand (without mulligans):

0 Lands: 5636 times (5.64%)
1 Land: 21353 times (21.35%)
2 Lands: 32372 times (32.37%)
3 Lands: 25703 times (25.7%)
4 Lands: 11439 times (11.44%)
5 Lands: 3024 times (3.02%)
6 Lands: 441 times (0.44%)
7 Lands: 32 times (0.03%)
In 90.86% of all scenarios, you will have 1 through 4 lands, which should be playable.

Self-Inflicted Life Loss: One of the biggest game-aspects lost in goldfishing is self-inflicted life loss. Dream Halls does a fair amount in a short time and on a consistent basis. This is problematic in a field full of fast aggro decks. While it will not matter in the control matchup (slower clocks) nor the combo matchup (if the opponent goes off you are dead whether your life total is 20 or 15), it is supremely important to understand self-inflicted life loss against decks like Zoo, Goblins, Burn, and so on. This is not just a function of Harbili’s deck, although I will use his list to illustrate the point.

Look at the mana base. Harbili runs 17 lands total, of which 10 damage you: 3 Ancient Tomb and 7 Fetchlands. So you have almost a 60% chance of getting at least 1 land that damages you in your hands. In practice, this means that you will probably have either 2-3 fetchlands or 1 fetchland/1 Ancient Tomb. This gives you about 2.5 damage per game from your lands.

Now let’s look at your disruption. In some games, you will be fine with just casting 1 FoW (1 life loss). In other games, you will not get a FoW, but will instead get a Thoughtseize (2 life loss). In other games, you may need/cast both (3 life loss). This works out to around a 1.75 life loss per game on average; you have an equal chance of getting FoW or Thoughtseize (so the average of the 2 is 1.5), and a less than likely chance of getting both. This raises the total to about 1.75.

Finally, you are using Lim-Dul’s Vault. You have about a 44% chance of getting it in your opening hand, and after you cast a single draw spell, that increases to about 50%. If you get Vault, you will probably cast it, and it will probably take around 2-3 digs to get a card that you need. This means that, in a game where Vault is used, you will lose about 2.5 life on average. But you do not always draw Vault. Indeed you will probably only use it in less than 50% of games. Let us say 40% of games. So multiplying the 2.5 life loss average by the 40% of games that it is used in gives you approximately 1 life loss on average from Vault every game.

So that means you will deal yourself 2.5 damage from lands, 1.75 damage from disruption, and 1 damage from Vault on average in any given game. That’s approximately 5 damage per game. Goldfish the deck a few times and you will find that this value is extremely close to the truth.

Why is this a problem? Because decks like Zoo have a scarily fast clock. Assume a scenario where the Zoo player goes turn 1 Lynx, turn 2 Goyf, turn 3 Burn. That’s 4 damage from the Lynx on turn 2, and 10 damage from the Goyf, Lynx, and Burn spell on turn 3. That’s 14 damage. See the problem? That puts you a measly 1 life from death. If you had an extra fetchland or need more Vault digging, this could mean that you are unable to pull of the combo.

So what is the point of all of this? I have demonstrated that self-inflicted life loss is a problem in this deck, a serious one that can cost games. The way around this is to be judicious. Here are my point-by-point pieces of advice for Dream Halls pilots:
1. Thoughtseize only when necessary: If you are playing against Goblins or Zoo and it is game 1, the only serious threat that Zoo has is Pridemage. Goblins has nothing. By “serious threat” I mean a card that can stop your combo. If you need to slow down the clock, then use FoW. Avoid Thoughtseizing in the serious aggro matchups unless you know that it will help you.
2. Crack fetches only when needed: Only crack your fetchlands when you need them for mana. In general this is a good practice, but it is even more important in Dream Halls owing to the possible life loss.
3. Be flexible and patient: This point pertains specifically to LDV. Do you REALLY need to dig for Halls? Or can you just Show and Tell a Progenitus/Hellkite out right now to hold the line? Or even win the game? Vault is one of the worst, and best, cards in the deck, because players who use it have a tendency to suicidally dig for their card even after it becomes clear that further life paying is not to their advantage.

When to use Progenitus: Show and Tell can get your combo out, but it can also get the 10/10 monster into beating mode. When would you use one strategy instead of the other? First of all, see how early you can do one strategy versus the other. If you have Tomb, Petal, Show and Tell, Progenitus in your opening hand and you are on the play, and you also happen to have a blue card and FoW, then by all means, get him out there and don’t worry about the Dream Halls win condition. Second, if your hand is light on digging spells (Brainstorm/Ponder/Vault), you lack combo pieces like Conflux and Halls, but you do have Show and Tell and Progenitus, then go with that combo. The clock is ticking in many matches, and Progenitus can really slow that down.
Similarly, sometimes Show and Tell on Hellkite is also a good decision. This is especially true in the Goblin and Merfolk matchups, where a single Hellkite can virtually clear the board. In general, just be flexible. If you do not feel that you can find your combo in time (whether through statistical analysis or the heart of the cards), then look for a backup plan in Progenitus/Show and Tell.

Cards to Watch Out For: In the Legacy format, there are only a few cards that you need to specifically watch out for in addition to the normal stuff like Duress/Thoughtseize/FoW/etc. EVERY deck needs to watch out for these cards. You also need to keep an eye open for the following. Some go without saying, but it still is important to mention them.
Krosan Grip: Default Dream Halls hatred.
Qasali Pridemage: Not many decks use him, but the maindecked hatred is rough in game 1.
Red Elemental Blast / Pyroblast: It is tempting to hastily combo out against decks that do not appear to pack countermagic. Then the Blast hits.
Gaddock Teeg: Shuts down all aspects of the main combo. Show and Tell with Hellkite/Progenitus circumvents the little guy.
Ethersworn Canonist: Same as above.
Umezawa’s Jitte: An early Jitte drop and equip will put your opponent above 20 life in a hurry. Progenitus beats is the solution here.
Burrenton Forge Tender: You have probably begun to notice that most of these cards stop the combo. Not the Progenitus.
Aura of Silence: The enchantment version of Pridemage, more or less.
Rhox War Monk: Similar to Jitte.
Extirpate: Nightmare card, even though not many decks use it. If cast in the middle of a combo, it could leave you a turn behind and on the rocks. As usual, however, it does nothing to stop Progenitus.
Chain of Vapor: Dredge’s weapon of choice against Halls. Bounces the enchantment in response to a spell being cast to slow you down. Useless against Progenitus.
Iona, Shield of the Emeria: This is the only card on the list that stops both of your plans. If Iona gets out and names blue, you are scooping. No Halls, no Show and Tell, no FoW, no nothing. This creature is one of the strongest cases to change part of the board to include a Snuff Out or two, although even that may be a lost cause, given that you cannot back it up with FoW (Duress/Thoughtseize backup, however, will work).
Arcane Laboratory: Enchantment version of Cannonist.
Ray of Revelation: Aggro Loam will use this and Grip for redundant hatred.
Zuran Orb: Like Jitte, but when combined with Glacial Chasm and Loam, can produce a seriously problematic engine that means Progenitus can’t attack.
This is not an exhaustive list, but it gives you some idea of the huge vulnerabilities, especially in games 2 and 3, that the Dream Halls combo itself is going to have. Plan accordingly. Do not assume that a deck has no threats just because you think you know their list. Always try to have a backup plan (read: Progenitus) whenever you are trying to combo against any deck that might have these cards. You will notice that these cards do little to stop Progenitus, but everything to stop Halls. Keep that well in mind.

ktkenshinx
01-11-2010, 07:47 PM
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Matchups

Matchups are sorted alphabetically. Not all decks have been included on this list, as some matchups will be similar to others. Based off of recent tournament results, these are the decks that a potential Dream Halls player should be prepared to face.

Aggro Loam: Favorable
Your opponent will have almost no chance of stopping you in game 1, unless you get a bad draw and get beaten to death. The only cards that you have to worry about are Chalice of the Void at 1, which will slow your digging down, and Burning Wish for Hull Breach or Reverent Silence. Chalice only slows you down, and Wish is itself a slow plan that you should be able to stop with either Thoughtseize or FoW. It is to your advantage to just go for the Dream Halls route, unless you know that you can protect Progenitus from a possible Chainer’s Edict, Perish, or other wishable removal spell.
Krosan Grip will be the name of the game in games 2 and 3. Ray of Revelation might also make a showing. If your opponent showed no sign of Burning Wish during game 1, and you want to assume that he does not actually have a Burning Wish in his deck, then you can simply side out a few pieces of the Halls combo and switch to Progenitus beat mode with disruption package backup. If Wish is still in the picture, then keep your options open. Spell Pierce or Duress are the only cards worth bringing in no matter what, but because Loam has very few cards that actually threaten your plan, you need not bring in many.
Boarding strategy: -1 Conflux, -1 Halls, -1 Vault, +3 Duress/Pierce

ANT: Favorable
It’s almost a strict race to the finish. You have to worry about FoW, Pierce, Duress, and perhaps a maindecked bounce spell. There is no reason to not go for the Dream Halls combo, unless you can get Progenitus out on turn 1; by the time you get him out on turn 2, you will already be winning by turn 4. At that point in time, you might as well try for the turn 3 or 4 Halls win.
In games 2 and 3, you can totally switch around your plan. I have found it quite effective to board out most of the Halls combo and add in both the Pierces and Duresses. Then you can just go for the Progenitus/Hellkite beat plan, which you can resolve by turn 3 most of the time, while sitting behind a shield of a whopping 16 disruption/counter spells. ANT, on the other hand, will be unable to so easily switch their strategy, and will have a highly unfavorable game 2 and 3. Why get rid of your combo if the matchup is a straight race? Because in doing so, you can double your disruption spells while ANT is pretty much stuck at their usual package. This gives your Progenitus a strong chance of ending the game while ANT fumbles around for its Storm count. Regardless, as a result of games 2 and 3, the match as a whole is in your favor.
Boarding strategy: -2 Conflux, -3 Ultimatum, -1 Halls, +2 Duress, +4 Spell Pierce

Belcher: Favorable
ANT is almost a strict race. Belcher, at least in game 1, is 100% a strict race. Unless the Belcher player wishes for Hull Breach, you just need to beat them to the finish. As long as you have 1 FoW or 1 Thoughtseize, you should be able to manage this; the probability works out in your favor of having either these cards by turn 2.
Games 2 and 3 are a bit of a toss up. If Belcher resolves a turn 1 Xantid Swarm, then they are going to be able to win the subsequent race (most of the time). If they do not side in the Swarms and instead bring Duress into the picture, then you have to worry about disruption. Basically, you do not know what the Belcher player will do; will they try and stop your combo, or try and protect their own? Because of Swarm, it is extremely foolish to rely on the Progenitus strategy in games 2 and 3. If that green critter gets out, your clock is ticking down, and Progenitus is not going to be able to race it. Adding in the Duress set will be quite helpful, as 11 disruption spells are going to be a challenge for Belcher to circumvent (especially if used judiciously). Just watch out for the surprise Empty the Warrens. If you were planning to FoW Belcher and then find yourself having to FoW a Warrens, you are going to be in serious trouble. Remember, however, the Ultimatum can keep you alive here for a turn if you do not have the full combo assembled. The same goes for Hellkite.
Boarding strategy: -1 Vault, -2 Progenitus, +2 Duress, +1 Hydroblast

Countertop: Unfavorable
So much countermagic. Counterspell, FoW, Daze, Spell Snare, Counterbalance, Hydroblast; this is but a sample of what you will face in this matchup. When combined with the Goyf/Rhox clock, you could be in serious trouble. Especially given that one or two Rhox swings tends to put the Countertop pilot at 20+ life, and out of range of a single turn combo kill. Make sure that you have a Progenitus back up plan in the works; even a simple Swords on their own Tarmogoyf can put them at over 20 life, and bring your lone Hellkite into range of Path or Swords. Remember, the Countertop player just needs one creature out to smash, and can hold 4+ counters in hand to deal with your combo. You have to invest far more in order to win.
The story is not much better after boarding. You will have even more spells to worry about, like Grip, Elemental Blast, Chalice, and others. Your best bet is likely ditching the Halls combo altogether. But what about the random ‘I win’ factor? Forget about it. If you dealt with 12-16 counters in game 1, expect 16+ in game 2 (or at least 12+ and some permutation of Grips and Extirpates). You will have a much better chance of resolving a Show and Tell on Progenitus then you will of resolving the whole combo; one takes up 8 slots. The other takes up 15. Meditate is valuable in this matchup, especially because at 3 CC it does not get countered by Countertop or Snare. Moreover, your clock is not that serious. Getting 4 extra cards can help bolster your arsenal to win a counterwar.
Boarding strategy: -1 Vault, -2 Halls, -2 Conflux, -3 Ultimatum, +2 Meditate, +2 Duress, +3 Pierce.

Dredge: Neutral
Another race, but this time you are guaranteed to get hit by disruption spells. Or rather, one spell: Therapy. You will probably get Therapied 3 times by turn 4 (2 if you are lucky). Guaranteed disruption, by virtue of excessive dredging, coupled with a blazing fast clock can be problematic in game 1. Don’t even think about the Progenitus beating plan; three turns is just not fast enough when the zombies are building for an assault.
Games 2 and 3 are slightly better. Unfortunately, unlike most decks in the format, you do not have any graveyard hate in your board. That’s the bad news. The good news is Dredge has very little to board in against you. You might have to worry about a Dread Return on Iona, perhaps a Ray of Revelation, and maybe a Chain of Vapor. But you don’t have to worry about much else. Thoughtseize is useless in this matchup, so get rid of all 4 of them in favor of Spell Pierce, which can be critical for stopping Return and Therapy. Propaganda is also immensely helpful in slowing the clock down. Shed some of the less useful cards (in addition to Thoughtseize, get rid of Vault, because it’s suicidal, and Progenitus, because you are not going to win the beatdown game) to improve your game 2 and 3 matchup.
Boarding strategy: -1 Vault, -2 Progenitus, -4 Thoughtseize, +4 Spell Pierce, +3 Propaganda.

Goblins: Highly Favorable
What differentiates this Aggro matchup from the Zoo matchup or the Merfolk matchup? Lack of answers. Quite simply put, there is almost no card that Goblins can use that can stop you. All you have to worry about is their clock. This means you do not have to use Thoughtseize to proactively remove threats, nor do you have to waste time getting a FoW to protect your combo; once you go off, you go off. Period. End of story. The Goblins clock is about as fast as the Zoo clock (turn 4 win), and your clock is approximately a turn 3 win, with consistency. Turn 4 if you want to be conservative. Obviously you do not under any circumstances want to go for the Progenitus plan, unless you can get him out on turn 1 (or turn 2 on the play). The monster is just not fast enough to race the horde.
Games 2 and 3 you will only have to worry about Red Elemental Blast, and perhaps Chalice. Some decks pack neither, in which case this is just a repeat of game 1. You can board in Propaganda to give you a huge clock extension, and you can add in a Hydroblast to slightly bolster your counterspell arsenal.
Boarding strategy: -4 Thoughtseize, +3 Propaganda, +1 Hydroblast

Lands (38/43): Neutral-Favorable
Game 1 is essentially a free win for you. The only card you need to worry about is Glacial Chasm, but even Chasm can only stop 5 of the 20 life loss as a result of your combo. Bring Progenitus onto the field (to avoid Maze of Ith shenanigans) and keep Chasm in the yard (FoW on Loam) to seal the game. You have a lot of time to set this up, or at least more than you would in other matches.
So why is this match only neutral? Games 2 and 3 can get ugly. Krosan Grip and Ray of Revelation are slightly annoying, but overall not that bad; there is nothing uniquely bad about the matchup just regarding these two cards. Zuran Orb is the problem child here. When used in tandem with an active Chasm, this will shut down your entire attack strategy and leave your opponent hanging at around 5 life but just out of reach. Do not ever let an Orb resolve. If you do, endless life gain and Chasm/Stadium/Cycle-land recursion will dash all hopes of victory. Thankfully, however, because Lands does not exactly pack redundant hatred, you should be able to get lucky in at least 1 of the 3 games and dash to the finish while your opponent fumbles around for a Chasm or Grip. For boarding you want to add in a pair of Duress and Pierce, the former for Grip and Orb, and the latter for Ray and Loam. This will give you 12 disruption spells to guarantee your success.
Boarding Strategy: -2 Progenitus, -1 Vault, -1 Petal, +2 Duress, +2 Spell Pierce

Merfolk: Highly Unfavorable
Your nightmare matchup. Fast clock combined with ample countermagic shield is a recipe for catastrophe to the aspiring combo player. Cursecatcher alone will slow Show and Tell down by at least 1 turn. Combine that with Daze and FoW and you have a serious wall of counterspells to pierce. Now, add on top of that Standstill, so the Fish player can draw into even more countermagic, and Jitte, to put them out of combo range, and you have yourself the classic nightmare matchup. There are three tricks to winning this match. First, don’t be scared. If you have FoW backup for your Halls, do not assume that your opponent has a FoW AND a Daze just because they have more than three cards in hand. You will miss your window of opportunity to win and learn in dismay that they did not even have the FoW, let alone 2 counterspells.
Second, don’t be stupid. Do not tap out to cast a Show and Tell if your opponent has a Cursecatcher in play. Do not forget that there are charge counters on a Jitte. Errors like these will cost you games, and they are easy to make against the already frightening Merfolk deck.
Third, pay attention to the Merfolk clock. Unlike Zoo and Goblins, aggro decks that consistently can muster a turn 4 kill, Merfolk tends to be a bit slower. If your opponent is having a slower start, then use your draw and tutor spells to find protection spells (FoW, TS) or redundancy (extra Show and Tell, Halls). Double Show and Tell is especially effective, especially when backed up with other spells. You cannot afford to go for this sort of redundancy in a Zoo matchup, because the clock is so much faster. But against Merfolk, it can be worth the wait.
Games 2 and 3 are worse than game 1. You will also have to face Hydroblast and Spell Pierce in addition to all the counters of your first game. Duress and Spell Pierce are your answers here. Unfortunately, it is hard to sideboard against Merfolk because you cannot just ditch a strategy (Progenitus or Halls) as in other matchups. This means you have to choose which you are going to use as your primary. I prefer Progenitus, as it renders their Hydroblasts ineffective; they are meant to counter Ultimatum, not Show and Tell.
Boarding Strategy: -2 Halls, -2 Conflux, -1 Vault, +2 Duress, +3 Spell Pierce

Zoo: Unfavorable
Maindeck answers, a fast clock, and a dangerous sideboard characterizes the Zoo matchup. The turn 4 clock of Goblins is made far more dangerous when you add in Pridemage to the mix. If he slips through into play, then you essentially have to switch to the Progenitus plan. Even this, however, might not be enough, especially if burn spells start flying at your face. While Harbili himself went 2-0 against Zoo in his tournament, this should not be viewed as representative of the matchup overall. In his first game, the Zoo player did not drop a plains and thus missed out on 3 critical points of Nacatl damage over the next few turns; this would have ended the game. Similarly, his opponent did not draw any enchantment removal in either game.
The first order of business in sideboarding is to lower your Thoughtseize and Vault count; these cards tend to kill you rather than help you. Duress comes in to deal with Grip, and Propaganda comes in to greatly increase your survival chances.
Boarding Strategy: -1 Vault, -3 Thoughtseize, -1 Progenitus, +2 Duress, +3 Propaganda

----------------------------------------------------------------
Conclusions

Dream Halls is a powerful combo deck, but Harbili’s build is not the end-all-be-all strategy. There have been similar Dream Halls showings since his win, many of which were slightly different builds. This should be debated and discussed in the post itself, and not leveled as an attack against the primer; I acknowledge that there is no BEST build. I merely am giving an explanation of one specific build.

I will post additional tournament information on this deck (And its variations) as they are presented in the thread.

-ktkenshinx-

ktkenshinx
01-11-2010, 07:55 PM
----------------------------------------------------------------
Additional Builds & Tournament Appearances

Dream Halls
By Jaime Cano and Csat Fernndez: GP Madrid 2010
2nd and 4th place respectively (same decklist)

Lands: 17
3 Ancient Tomb
1 Flooded Strand
5 Island
3 Misty Rainforest
3 Scalding Tarn
2 Underground Sea

Creatures: 4
4 Progenitus

Instants: 12
4 Brainstorm
4 Force of Will
4 Lim-Dul's Vault

Sorcery: 20
4 Conflux
4 Cruel Ultimatum
4 Ponder
4 Show and Tell
4 Thoughtseize

Artifacts and Enchantments: 7
3 Lotus Petal
4 Dream Halls

Sideboard: 15
2 Meditate
1 Rushing River
4 Spell Pierce
1 Wipe Away
2 Duress
3 Propaganda
2 Pithing Needle

------------------------------------------

dorsch
01-11-2010, 08:27 PM
Great Primer. I can see you put lots of work in it, so i am sorry i have to spoil that:
How often did you actually play this deck in a real tournament?
This
3. With Conflux, find 1 Progenitus (Blue card), 3 Cruel Ultimatum (White, Green, and Black cards), and 1 Bogardan Hellkite (Red Card).does not work because of Cruel Ultimatum's colors, so you should edit that line to a combo chain which works

stacker
01-11-2010, 08:41 PM
Rushing River: Sometimes you just need to bounce something ... or an early Reanimator target

I'm not sure I would board this in against reanimator, because like you say later in your primer, they would just reanimate Iona game 2/3 naming blue. I think it's much more worthwhile to board in extra duress/countermagic to prevent their reanimates and extirpates.

J.V.
01-11-2010, 08:46 PM
This is true, Cruel Ultimatum is BUR...
but the combo can still be achieved by getting the following:
Progenitus (Green), 2 Cruel Ultimatum (B and U), Conflux (W), and Bogardan Hellkite (R)
Then cast the Conflux for Cruel Ultimatum and 4 other pitch cards (prog's and confluxs).
then cast 3 Cruels and Hellkite for the win.

kicks_422
01-11-2010, 08:49 PM
Great Primer. I can see you put lots of work in it, so i am sorry i have to spoil that:
How often did you actually play this deck in a real tournament?
Thisdoes not work because of Cruel Ultimatum's colors

Then just switch Progenitus as the green card and the Ultimatum as the blue card. Then get another conflux as the white card?...

johanessen
01-11-2010, 09:19 PM
From countertop you must fear Pyroblasts more than Hydroblasts (UGrx versions)

IsThisACatInAHat?
01-11-2010, 09:26 PM
Awesome primer. I wonder if the guys who placed well (Harbili and didn't someone do well at an SCG event?) would give us their thoughts. Is there an approaching consensus on what the best wincon package is?

ktkenshinx
01-11-2010, 10:02 PM
Great Primer. I can see you put lots of work in it, so i am sorry i have to spoil that:
How often did you actually play this deck in a real tournament?
I have not played this in a tournament, that is true. I did, however, test Halls in 25 sample 3-game bouts against each of the matchups listed. It is from this testing (none of which was done on Workstation) that my experience comes.

Thisdoes not work because of Cruel Ultimatum's colors, so you should edit that line to a combo chain which works
I have edited this to reflect my oversight. Writing long primers tends to see one forget the little details like this; good catch.

Once the data from the most recent SCG event is released (the excel spreadsheet) then I will update this accordingly with that deck's matchups. Someone did indeed finish 28th of 117 at Dallas/Ft. Worth; his list is given below:

Dream Halls
By Dustin Buckingham
5 Island
4 Force of Will
3 Conflux
1 Echoing Truth
4 Thoughtseize
4 Ponder
4 Mystical Tutor
4 Brainstorm
4 Daze
3 Polluted Delta
4 Dream Halls
3 Cruel Ultimatum
3 Lotus Petal
3 Ancient Tomb
1 Bogardan Hellkite
2 Underground Sea
4 Show and Tell
4 Misty Rainforest

Sideboard:
SB: 4 Progenitus
SB: 3 Diabolic Edict
SB: 4 Blue Elemental Blast
SB: 4 Ravenous Trap

His build is extremely similar to Harbili's in most respects.

-ktkenshinx-

Tao
01-11-2010, 10:10 PM
- One thing I noted in the replies to this thread and the old DH thread: People are too afraid to go for Show and Tell / Progenitus, some even to the point at which they don't want to play Progeitus at all: Yes it can be outraced. But that doesnt really matter, you win some games and lose some games, thats the basic thing about nearly every combo, you go for it and see if it is enough. I mean, don't do it against Goblins or Pox or when Prog clearly won't win the race but it is often giving you good odds.
ANT is an awesome deck which has the luxury of being able to cast Chant and have a 100% Combo, but usually Combo decks are based on taking risks - I've seen Mind's Desire for 12 fizzle and Mind's Desire for 1 win. DH has other advantages when compared to ANT. Some ANT versions even side in Dark Confidant or Xantid Swarm, because they HELP winning if you untap with them. Progenitus needs no help for that.

If you see Tropical Islands on the opponents side, just go for it.
They have a hard time countering a Show and Tell on turn 3 (make sure to have Petal or Tomb so you get around Daze), especially if you either Thoughtseized or have FoW ready. They will drop Goyf, you drop Progenitus and they will scoop. GG. But if you let the game go on and on to set up a perfect DH combo they will find more and more disruption every turn, maybe even Counterbalance with FoW and trinket Mage on Top.

It is often the same thing with Staxx. Even though they might have solutions for it, like Moat or Tabernacle/Geddon it will still be better to go for it than just waiting for them to drop Trinisphere and Chalice on 1/2 and Geddon you. Same with Landstill, but here it is better. If they have Moat or Wrath you get another shot with DH later, if they dont have it, you just got a free win.

- For what you get with the first Conflux:
a) If you are not worried about disruption (like free Krosan Grips): it doesnt really matter: you just get something like 2 additional Confluxxes, 2 Ultimatum, 1 Hellkite and it is more than easy from then on, because all the Confluxxes give you way more gas than you need. You can't do anything wrong.

b) If you are worried about disruption: First of all cast the first spell without passing priority.

In G2 if they play Green Mana they will often be waiting with Krosan Grip and thus it is best to lead with a Cruel Ultimatum so that you survive more turns if they Grip it. The Ultimatum will usually draw you more gas so you can combo again in one or two turns and it also usually buys you enough time to live until then - they probably just lost their complete hand and a creature and you gained 5 life. Furthermore the Ulrimatum will have wrecked their hand so that they won't disrupt again.

If you have no Ultimatum, but a Conflux you should play it safe and get another Dream Halls. Furthermore a Lim Duls Vault, two Conflux and a Cruel Ultimatum. If they let Conflux resolve without Gripping it then you have won because they don't have Grip. Cast Cruel Ultimatum to make absolutely sure you have won and go on as in G1. If they Grip it you will have another Dream Halls for the next turn and you will be able to cast Cruel Ultimatum from it.

yougo
01-12-2010, 01:56 AM
hi

ive build this deck and the first question that came to my head was, what are we doing againts discard and blast those are the worst card right ? but then ive started to realize why not playing chalice of the void!!! it stop everything we fear except krosan grip im still wanderring if i will try this baby main or in the side board. of course the deck needs a little tweak i presume but that is the list im trying right now

key spell 8

4 dream hall
4 show and tell

the kills 12

4 progenitus
3 cruel ultimatum
1 all sun dawn
4 conflux

disrupt 8

4 force of will
4 thoughtseize

deck manipulation 11

4 brainstorm
3 impulse
4 lim dul's vault

mana 21

4 ancient tomb
4 chrome mox
3 underground sea
4 polluted delta
2 scalding tarn
3 island
1 swamp

side 15

2 wipeaway
2 hurklys recall
4 chalice of the void
2 duress
3 ravenous trap
2 propaganda

chalice does not just stop hate it win you game its excellent againts zoo tempo ***** and any kind of storm combo once its on the play for exemple they cannot sword their own creature to gain life...:tongue:

i think chalice should be at least considered

what are you thinking ?

Rancorous Fool
01-12-2010, 02:29 AM
I prefer the slightly more compact win condition of:

-1 hellkite
-3 cruel ultimatum

+1 tendrils of agony
+3 Open spots

1 Tendrils is all that is needed.

Dream halls--> conflux 4 times netting force + tendrils + 9 other cards. Play 4 of those 9 other cards. Impulse or Brainstorm into other spells. to pitch to play tendrils.

The one functionality I miss is playing cruel off of dream halls to draw into conflux.

dearleader
01-12-2010, 03:46 AM
Great primer, ktkenshinx. It's very thorough.



If you have no Ultimatum, but a Conflux you should play it safe and get another Dream Halls. Furthermore a Lim Duls Vault, two Conflux and a Cruel Ultimatum. If they let Conflux resolve without Gripping it then you have won because they don't have Grip. Cast Cruel Ultimatum to make absolutely sure you have won and go on as in G1. If they Grip it you will have another Dream Halls for the next turn and you will be able to cast Cruel Ultimatum from it.


After Dream Halls hits play, you have priority cast Conflux. They either Grip in response or they don't.
- If they do, then you can choose to fetch something like Dark Ritual + Dream Halls to go off next turn.
- If they don't, then you'd have 4 cards + Conflux again, and then you have priority again with Dream Halls in play.
The point is that what you search for depends on whether they grip in response, right?


Best win condition
There's no consensus. Harbili’s win package is pretty decent. There are no necessarily dead cards pre-conflux; Progenitus (and to a lesser extent Hellkite) can be S&T'd in, and Cruel Ultimatum gives you 7 cards to cast off Dream Halls. It's also worth noting that even though the deck deals at most 20 damage on the turn it combo's off, following up 2/3 CUs with Dragon and Progenitus is usually game. It's almost assuredly game postboard, because you can tutor up a bounce spell to get rid of any permanent.
Storm is not a great kill because you then need answers to Trinisphere and Canonist, while other kill conditions can slow roll 1 CU a turn. It's also harder to win if they've hit you a few times with RWM. Tendrils is dead pre-combo, and having Tendrils discarded leaves you without a win condition.


Goblin's MU
I've actually found the Goblins MU about as difficult as Zoo. Ports and Wastelands slow us down by a full turn, and if Goblins realizes it's up against combo, it can mulligan aggressively into fast hands.

In brief, I've also found that Landstill is a very easy MU because they have around 7-9 relevant cards (Counterspell, FoW, and some combination of Clique/Cunning Wish/random tech). Eva Green is generally a terrible MU - discard affects us much more than other combo decks, and they put down a reasonably fast clock. Rock is not as bad as Eva Green, but it depends on the build. Tempo Thresh is generally easy, but it depends on the draws. Lim Dul's Vault is their only spell snare target, and the only other relevant spells they have are Stifle, Force, and Vendilion Clique. I also didn't find Counter-top to be as bad as described, but I haven't playtested that matchup a lot, and the skill of the Counter-top player is obviously a big factor. Versions with Qasali Pridemage are very difficult, but Daze can be played around, and Spell Snare only counters Vault, which can be boarded out.

I'd like to make a case for Dark Ritual over Ancient Tomb and Lotus Petal. I fully understand the merits of Tomb, and am testing it in the place of some lands and Dark Rituals in my build. It's nice to open up some non-land slots and to not worry about card disadvantage from Ritual (I run fewer progenitus, so I also have more slots for lands). I like Dark Ritual because it gives you a full 8 cards that cast Dream Halls on turn three. It conveniently provides better protection against Daze. The downside is that you have 2 fewer cards for a turn 2 Show and Tell, but the chance of having acceleration + S&T + Progenitus/Combo in hand is small enough that the difference. Turn 3 seems to be the magical goldfish turn, because the first 2 turns are usually spent cantripping. It doesn't necessarily make you more reliant on Underground Sea because you can run more basics in the Ancient Tomb slots. Also, if you run 20-ish lands, Ritual can be boarded out in control MUs.

Maveric78f
01-12-2010, 04:14 AM
Nice Primer but awful list. I don't give a shit it has won a big tourney or not. My version of the deck plays 20 lands + 4 petals + 6 cantrips + 3 tops. Even with this, I have hard time finding my mana in some MUs (Canadian Thresh and Eva Green to start with). Reducing the land count to 17 and relying on Show and Tell that much is really not the way to go. Against discard, it has absolutely no chance neither since it plays no card advantage and no top.

Darkenslight
01-12-2010, 07:46 AM
Has anyone considered Searing Wind as an alternate source of large damage? It deals 10, and it cuts down on the steps required:

1) Cast DH
2) Cast Conflux for CU, CU, Conflux, Searing Wind, Progenitus
3) Discard Progenitus to cast Conflux, getting Conflux, Prog, Prog, CU, All Suns Dawn.
4) Discard PRog for CU.
5) Discard CU for CU.
6) Discard Conflux for Searing Wind (for the win)/All Sun's Dawn (if any steps were countered).

And you can always just go nuts, if necessary :)

Hopo
01-12-2010, 08:34 AM
Nice Primer but awful list. I don't give a shit it has won a big tourney or not. My version of the deck plays 20 lands + 4 petals + 6 cantrips + 3 tops. Even with this, I have hard time finding my mana in some MUs (Canadian Thresh and Eva Green to start with). Reducing the land count to 17 and relying on Show and Tell that much is really not the way to go. Against discard, it has absolutely no chance neither since it plays no card advantage and no top.

You are too harsh. This deck has proven itself, and if your list isn't competitive, don't blame it on this list.

That said, I play 25 lands and 3 Mox Diamonds. I also think that the combo shouldn't need Show and Tell to go off. If majority of the time you just use Show and Tell to drop a fatty, I feel you could as well drop the Halls and its massive support package and play more consistent S&T deck.
In order to reliably cast Dream Halls, land count should be 20 or above and include at least four copies of Ancient Tomb/City of Traitors.

I also dislike Force of Will because of the card disadvantage. Like Maveric78 said, there's no real card advantage going on here. I decided not to play Fow for now, since it takes an invaluable card from your hand and I already have had problems comboing when I have Dream Halls but have cantripped/used all the coloured cards and cannot cast Conflux. This adds up when you are facing discard. By removing Fow you could replace Ponders with Tops and improve immediately the discard matchups. It also makes playing Mystical tutor even more appealing. In last tournament I won majority of the games by tutoring Conflux at the end of opponents turn and during my turn dropping Dream Halls. I understand tutor being more card disadvantage, but I don't think that this deck even needs Fow while tutor drastically improves your chances of having business in hand while playing Halls.

deadlock
01-12-2010, 09:28 AM
Some notes:
- I consider cutting S&T a huge mistake, reasons has been expressed by others already.
- The smallest possible kill with the largest number of Progenitus looks good,
to make S&T stronger.
- Cutting FoW is a huge mistake in my opinion, card advatange is not everything, if they drop a Pridemage or something it can screw you badly. Fow helps here.
- If you dont go for the fastest possible kill like the orginal list, say aim for a turn 5 kill, Ancestral Visions is a great tool. As its nice to cast of Halls in order to find Conflux and it lets you recover from discard / whatever. If so you would need additional ways to survice to that point though. Concentrate can also be considered with the proper acceleration. Cast it on turn 3 to set up the turn 4 combo.
- I also thought about Flash of Insight as it can be discarded for Halls, gives ca and also finds the second piece. Requires a bunch of blue and UU in that turn though.

Maveric78f
01-12-2010, 09:49 AM
You are too harsh. This deck has proven itself, and if your list isn't competitive, don't blame it on this list.
I never said that.

FoW is a necessary evil. Not to protect your combo because it does it quite unefficiently (since you'd need 5 cards to combo), but as a versatile universal turn 0 to turn infty solution. It's also great to fight against random hate after playing Conflux, along with Thoughtseize. As I said earlier, the best protection spells for the combo are Duress/Thoughtseize and Spell Snare. The first one deals proactively with everything, but it's empties your hand which is bad. The second one is the answer to every non split second and non counterspell hate : hate bears, Qasali, counterbalance, hymn, mana denial (smallpox/sinkhole). Spell Pierce is good too.

Hopo
01-12-2010, 10:08 AM
Instead of Fow I've been playing Cabal Therapy. But I must admit that Rector version plays quite differently and benefits massively from therapy. I'm advocating one-mana discard spells as primary protection.

Shimster
01-12-2010, 10:15 AM
As a sidenote: You shouldn't give too much credit to Jonas Harbili. The deck's inventor is Marc Tobiasch, who lent the deck to Jonas. Marc decided against playing the deck in favour of his 4c Kitchen Finks control deck by flipping a coin.

The Meditates are a SB answer to discard. Marc said he has got enough other weapons to fight blue control.

Maveric78f
01-12-2010, 10:35 AM
I tried a UGB version with Veteran Explorer and Lotus Cobra to mana ramp the combo and 4*Seize + 4*Cabal Therapy to protect the combo. The good thing of this version was to be able to play quite often Conflux or even Ultimatum without DH. But I found that I was emptying my hand too fast.

My list was controlish:

// Lands 19
2 [CST] Island (2)
2 [CST] foret (2)
2 [CST] swamp (2)
3 [ZEN] Fetch UG
4 [ON] Polluted Delta
3 [ZEN] Fetch GB
1 [A] Underground Sea
1 [A] Topical Island
1 [A] Bayou

// Creatures 8
4 Veteran Explorer
4 [ZEN] Lotus Cobra

// Combo Package 10
3 [CFX] Conflux
1 [ALA] Cruel Ultimatum
1 [] Echoing Truth
1 [EVE] Nucklavee
4 [SH] Dream Halls

// Disrupt 11
4 [LRW] Thoughtseize
4 [] Cabal Therapy
3 [] Pernicious Deed

// Manipulation/Tutors/Piocheurs 12
4 [FNM] Fact or Fiction
4 [MM] Brainstorm
4 [BOK] Sensei

The perfect hand is like this:
Turn 1 Explorer.
Turn 2 Seize + Therapy flashbacked. Play Cobra.
Turn 3 Fetch 7 manas in pool to play whatever you want.

Fatestitcher
01-12-2010, 10:48 AM
First of fall, I would like to thank the person who wrote this primer for making it thorough and informational. Pros and beginners with hopes of riding this deck towards T8 victories will benefit from reading it.


I prefer the slightly more compact win condition of:

-1 hellkite
-3 cruel ultimatum

+1 tendrils of agony
+3 Open spots

1 Tendrils is all that is needed.

Dream halls--> conflux 4 times netting force + tendrils + 9 other cards. Play 4 of those 9 other cards. Impulse or Brainstorm into other spells. to pitch to play tendrils.

The one functionality I miss is playing cruel off of dream halls to draw into conflux.

While I cannot discount the possibility of using Tendrils as a bankable win condition, I must just point out that that build makes it unidirectional in a way that it couldn't win without Dream Halls on the board. I would give Jonas the credit for having the balls to bring this unproven list in a major tourney. The same principle applied by Bant/CounterTop/green aggro players made this deck effective and that is what's called NO package. I call SnT the blue and meaner Natural Order, it costs 1 less colored mana to play, it doesn't need 1 creature, and it only costs a fourth of Natural Order (at least that's how much i got mine :laugh:). SnT package in this deck is very synergistic. Progenitus, a rainbow card that pitches anything to Dream Halls and SnT accels Dream Halls into play turn 1 or simply wins turn 3 by dropping a fatty that doesn't scoop to anything.

Having alternate win cons wins games.

godryk
01-12-2010, 01:35 PM
For your interest, the two lists I told you about, are already uploaded:

http://www.deckcheck.net/event.php?event=GPT+Madrid+2010+-+Madrid+/+Spain

fishnabubu
01-12-2010, 01:45 PM
I just took home a set of under ground seas and a set of badlands after finishing second this past weekend at Jupiter games. I played a dream halls list that I have been working on for 3 months solid as I was in the hospital for most of that. Here is the list.

4xbrainstorm
4xponder
4xdream halls
3xconflux
3xintuition
2ximpulse
4xshow and tell
4xcruel ultimatum
4xprogenitus
4xforce of will
3xpact of negation
4xlotus petal
3xsimian spirit guide
8xisland
3xancient tomb
3xcity of traitors
s/b.

4xchalice of the void
1xconflux
1ximpulse
1xintuition
3xmisdirection
3xspell pierce
2xhibernation

After my 2nd place performance i will say the deck needs 1 or 2 more islands, and the hibernations and misdirections are going to change to different cards. Brainstorm is good but i think without that many shuffling effects it might be better as serum visions. I know it looks silly having chalice of the void with all of those cantrips, but when i board in the chalice I take all of them out to bring in 4xchalice, 1ximpulse, 1xintuiton, and 1x conflux. I can afford less search if I'm slowing my opponent down considerably. I can say just coming out of the hospital this was my favorite performance of mine as far as my ten plus year magic career goes. actually its like 14 years but who's counting.

p.s. i just want to say that I had a very good time interacting with everybody. I want to apologize for the simian spirit guide win....that was dumb but sometimes that is how magic goes.

Happy Gilmore
01-12-2010, 01:54 PM
I'm very happy to see another viable combo deck being represented. First Enchantress then Dream Halls. The format is getting better every second.


I just took home a set of under ground seas and a set of badlands after finishing second this past weekend at Jupiter games. I played a dream halls list that I have been working on for 3 months solid as I was in the hospital for most of that. Here is the list.

4xbrainstorm
4xponder
4xdream halls
3xconflux
3xintuition
2ximpulse
4xshow and tell
4xcruel ultimatum
4xprogenitus
4xforce of will
3xpact of negation
4xlotus petal
3xsimian spirit guide
8xisland
3xancient tomb
3xcity of traitors
s/b.

4xchalice of the void
1xconflux
1ximpulse
1xintuition
3xmisdirection
3xspell pierce
2xhibernation

After my 2nd place performance i will say the deck needs 1 or 2 more islands, and the hibernations and misdirections are going to change to different cards. Brainstorm is good but i think without that many shuffling effects it might be better as serum visions. I know it looks silly having chalice of the void with all of those cantrips, but when i board in the chalice I take all of them out to bring in 4xchalice, 1ximpulse, 1xintuiton, and 1x conflux. I can afford less search if I'm slowing my opponent down considerably. I can say just coming out of the hospital this was my favorite performance of mine as far as my ten plus year magic career goes. actually its like 14 years but who's counting.

p.s. i just want to say that I had a very good time interacting with everybody. I want to apologize for the simian spirit guide win....that was dumb but sometimes that is how magic goes.

Congratz on the finish, I'm glad you did well with your list. However, just the thought of not running brainstorm deserves a good smack in the face. Serum Visions? I threw up a little. Run fetchlands, run another color even (black is a great canditate). There is litterally no good reason not to run brainstorm and additional shuffle affects.

johanessen
01-12-2010, 02:04 PM
maverick, i'm atm trying a four colour version with veteran explorer, academy rector and diabolic intent as a tutor. also play 4 thoughtseize plus 3 cabal therapy as disruption pack, but still haven't reached the optimized configuration.
the combo pieces are 3 conflux, 1 cruel ultimatum, 2 nucklavee and one chain of vapor, though 1 nucklavee is optional sometimes you can hardcast it and gives some c.a.

ktkenshinx
01-12-2010, 02:22 PM
I will update the main post with the pertinent information, including credit to Marc and his take on Meditate's inclusion. I will also add in the Dream Halls list to the third post (those that finished from Madrid).

Perhaps the best way to start some serious and productive discussion on the deck would be to analyze and compare win condition packages. Which is stronger? Which is faster? Which requires fewer cards? Which is more resilient to disruption? What cards stop certain packages? etc. This would be a good way to more acutely tackle the Dream Halls deck.

Here are the possibilities as I see them:

1. Ultimatum/Hellkite
2. Searing Wind
3. Tendrils of Agony
4. Nucklavee

These are not so much "packages" as they are the key components of the package. Is there any further clarification or preciseness that we can find in regards to win conditions before we actually analyze them?

-ktkenshinx-

Rancorous Fool
01-12-2010, 02:46 PM
I must just point out that that build makes it unidirectional in a way that it couldn't win without Dream Halls on the board. ...

Having alternate win cons wins games.


I still play show and tell, as well as 4 progenitus. The alternate win condition is still intact. I'm not sure why you thought I would cut those cards. I simply changed the dream halls kill condition. Cruel Ultimatum, like tendrils, cannot be played without dream halls. The only functionality lost is relying on Conflux post dream halls resolution rather than stalling/ hoping to draw conflux off of cruel.

Infinitium
01-12-2010, 03:07 PM
Don't forget Time Stretch. It allows the deck to scrap Ultimatum altogether and instead pack 4x Progenitus as the win/pitch, which imo is a positive since it is actually droppable off S&T. A singleton Stand/Deliver (or Recoil should one splash Black) can be run to bounce Moat/Humility should you be vary of that G1.

Atwa
01-12-2010, 05:15 PM
Don't forget Time Stretch. It allows the deck to scrap Ultimatum altogether and instead pack 4x Progenitus as the win/pitch, which imo is a positive since it is actually droppable off S&T. A singleton Stand/Deliver (or Recoil should one splash Black) can be run to bounce Moat/Humility should you be vary of that G1.

I think Time Stretch is actually a pretty good card. When you play Progenitus, Time Stretch basicly means game over. I would still play at least 1 Ultimatum (getting your opponent to discard his whole hand is good after all), but he other 2 spots it takes up can be filled with 1 Time Stretch and 1 card to get rid of nasty things like Moat, Humily, Glacial Chasm and the like. I would actually consider old school Desert Twister for this role, but the fact Vindicate has 2 colors makes it better (easier to fetch with Conflux).

I have also been thinking about Abeyance. When you resolve this, there is nothing your opponent can do. I've been thinking about playing Chant to protect you from countermagic and Grip (you play to combo out the turn you land Dream Halls), but you always were vulnerable against Pridemage. Abeyance actually protects you from both countermagic, and Pridemage activations (or Seal of Cleansing/Primordium and Aura of Silence for that matter).

Maybe splashing white for both Abeyance and Vindicate is a thought to think about for a while.

Fatestitcher
01-12-2010, 05:53 PM
Ive been thinking about a slot for Abeyance too in place of Cruel ultimatums.

here's my proposed Conflux#1 defensive pile:
:b:: Lim-Dul's vault/Thoughtseize
:u:: Pact of Negation
:r:: Conflux
:g:: Progenitus
:w:: Abeyance

Vindicate may be squeezed in the :b: slot. This list may require to run the ultimatums in the sb or none at all. 2xTime stretch or 2xPandemonium as the kill card.

fishnabubu
01-12-2010, 06:43 PM
There is very solid reasoning for not running multicolor. In testing the mono blue build was doing just as good as the other builds at playing around disruption, but not automatically losing to double wasteland draw automatically is a big bonus. I played against fairly heavy counter spell packages in 6 of the 7 rounds in the swiss and 2 of three rounds in the top 8 so my deck obviously can get past disruption. Brainstorm was not as good as ponder for me 80 percent of the time.

fishnabubu
01-12-2010, 07:04 PM
I think Time Stretch is actually a pretty good card. When you play Progenitus, Time Stretch basicly means game over. I would still play at least 1 Ultimatum (getting your opponent to discard his whole hand is good after all), but he other 2 spots it takes up can be filled with 1 Time Stretch and 1 card to get rid of nasty things like Moat, Humily, Glacial Chasm and the like. I would actually consider old school Desert Twister for this role, but the fact Vindicate has 2 colors makes it better (easier to fetch with Conflux).

I have also been thinking about Abeyance. When you resolve this, there is nothing your opponent can do. I've been thinking about playing Chant to protect you from countermagic and Grip (you play to combo out the turn you land Dream Halls), but you always were vulnerable against Pridemage. Abeyance actually protects you from both countermagic, and Pridemage activations (or Seal of Cleansing/Primordium and Aura of Silence for that matter).

Maybe splashing white for both Abeyance and Vindicate is a thought to think about for a while.

This is true but it is overkill, when u drop progenitus it is pretty much game over. I only had one progenitus killed the entire tournament. and i never lost a race. I also dont like fetches because then I'm open to silly things like stifle and pithing needle to wrecking my mana.

Brizzle
01-12-2010, 09:09 PM
Would Leyline of the Void be a viable Sideboard option? It's useful in quite a few matchups and can be Show and Tell'ed in if necessary.

fishnabubu
01-12-2010, 09:52 PM
Yes i think that is definitely one of the cards that is on the radar, definitely a meta-game call.

Fatestitcher
01-12-2010, 09:54 PM
yes. it is interesting that with FOW you can protect it from their duresses/therapy. Chalice of the Void (1 counter) in the sb may also help, especially against ANT, Ichorid, and Entomb decks. But that's already 8 slots >.<

eq.firemind
01-13-2010, 02:22 AM
How about Conflux into:
Sharuum the Hegemon
Sharuum the Hegemon
Disciple of the Vault
Conflux/Progenitus
Conflux/Progenitus

Then Disciple (pitch Conflux), Sharuum (pitch Sharuum). Sharuums create infinite loop of death/resurrection and opponent dies from Disciple. 3 combo slots (instead of 4 Ultimatums), but 1/1 creature is easy to get rid off

The second pile is:
Sharuum the Hegemon
Sharuum the Hegemon
Pandemonium
Conflux/Progenitus
Force of Will/Pact of Negation
Works just like the first one, but you have protection spell and Pandemonium is less vulnerable than Disciple.

The third pile:
Kiki-Kiki, Mirror Breaker
Sky Hussar
Force of Will/Pact of Negation
Conflux/Progenitus
Conflux/Progenitus
This one needs 2 slots for the win, waiting for attack is bad, package includes protection.

And just if you want some classy wins:
Magister Sphinx
Hidetsugu's Second Rite
Conflux/Progenitus
Conflux/Progenitus
Force of Will/Pact of Negation
Sphinx, FINISH HIM!, Hidetsugu's Second Rite, you win, FATALITY :cool:


Oh, and the best Conflux pile ever:
Autochthon Wurm
Nourishing Shoal
Lich
Conflux
Pact of Negation

Maveric78f
01-13-2010, 03:32 AM
Okay. This has been debated 1k times on the other thread and it appeared quite clearly that the best package is:
1*Instant U-Bounce (useful pre-DH)
1*Cruel Ultimatum (useful pre-Conflux)
1*Nucklavee (useful in control MU when you have a lot of lands)

All three elements can be resurrected from the yard and it's possible to protect the combo against any (single) graveyard hate.

The Conflux-stacks are simply (Progenitus is not necessary, even if the deck is probably better with it) :
Conflux => Seize + Fow + Ultimatum + Conflux*2
Conflux (pitch Conflux) => Seize + Bounce + Nucklavee + Conflux
Depending on board state/opponent's hand size/your hand :
- Bounce annoying permanent pitching FoW
- Seize (pitch Conflux)
- Ultimatum (depending on the opponent's hand, pitch either Nucklavee or something else)

Then, combo like a champ. Play Nucklavee regrowth Ultimatum and the Bounce. Play Ultimatum, Bounce Nucklavee, play again Nucklavee, and so on.

I don't see a single reason for using another package actually.

dearleader
01-13-2010, 03:51 AM
I agree with a lot of the stuff Maveric78f says.
- Running 17 land with no Top makes it very difficult to win against MUs that attack your mana base. It makes you too dependent on S&T. Also, Top is really worth it in this deck. It slows down the turn 2-3 goldfish, but it's invaluable against control and discard. I've said this many times before, but it bears repeating; drawing Vault cards with top is really important. going turn 1 top, turn 2 vault for 2 combo pieces, turn 3 win can happen quite often.
- Force is worse than Pact of Negation to protect our combo, but it's desperately needed to shore up our combo matchups since DH is the slowest combo deck, and it provides a generic solution to problematic cards such as Pridemage and Countertop (even though our combo dodges CT, a turn 2 CT turns off too much of our cantrips and gives our opponent inevitability).

There seems to be a lot of misconception about the Progenitus plan. It's not a good plan vs aggro. You're still at a significant risk to lose even with Turn 2 Progenitus on the draw, or Turn 3 on the play. I think getting raced by aggro is a much greater concern than the few decks in the meta that run 2-3 cards to stop progenitus. Other than FoW and Remember, even if your opponent finds a solution to progenitus, you've at least bought yourself a few more turns to play land and dig for the combo. As for MD answers any permanent that stops any of the win conditions, I suggest a single MD Cunning Wish. It's not dead in any match-up; I have Echoing Truth, Dark Ritual, Pact of Negation, and Ravenous trap in my SB. I only run 1 because it's generally too slow for a combo deck, and I can try to Vault for it if i really need it.

Adding other colors for protection is unnecessary. Abeyance seems interesting as it solves Qasali Pridemage, grip, and counters, but getting 5 mana to cast both Abeyance and S&T Dream Halls is too difficult seeing as how Zoo can goldfish you by turn 4, Merfolk and Thresh pack land destruction, and CounterTop will probably have its combo out by then. Enchantment destruction just sets you back a turn, which is only a problem if you're facing lethal. Get Dream Halls into play, without passing priority Conflux into Rit, DH, Conflux, Prog, CU, and go off the next turn.


Win conditions
Storm is unnecessary. You have to run 1 All Sun's Dawn, or else you're only left with the Progenitus plan if your opponent discards Tendrils, which is unlikely to happen unless your opponent knows your deck, but why take the risk or run additional dead cards as an answer?. You're also reduced to the Progenitus plan if your opponent has Trinisphere.

Searing Wind/Magister Sphinx is not that great either. Again, both cards are dead pre-combo (Sphinx can be S&T'd in, but it rarely does anything). Again, you have to run an All Sun's Dawn to avoid losing to discard on win conditions.

Is there any good reason why we must try to win the turn we combo off? Going Conflux -> cast CU 2-3 times, followed by a Wish for bounce/GY hate/countermagic, and finally a Progenitus gives us the game against most decks. Unless you see a lot of Enchantress decks that can have both Moat and Elephant Grass in play on turn 3, there's not much else in the field that can stop it. Running 3 CU gives you 7 cards to cast off Dream Halls, which means that most of the time you'll just be Vaulting for Dream Halls exclusively.

If I were to run a dedicated kill package, I'd probably run Nucklavee-CU-Echoing Truth. It's simple and has only 1 possibly dead card (nucklavee).

This is more or less the deck that a few of my friends and I created a few months ago. A couple things like the land count and the win package could be tweaked. It's not perfect, but in terms of speed it goes off turn 3-4 very consistently. It gets fewer turn 2 wins than the German build, but the basics and top help greatly against land destruction strategies, top is huge against discard. In this deck, you only need UU if you hardcast Dream Halls or if you cast 2 other blue spells in the same turn, and you almost never need BB in a single turn. I rarely have to grab Underground Sea. 3 FoW looks odd - I could easily run 3 duress/thoughtseize and 4 FoW. It's just that Force is terrible at protecting the combo since it requires that you have S&T, DH, Conflux, Force, and 2 other colored cards in hand to go off with protection. If you expect lots of CounterTop or Combo, then 4 Force is a must.
I'm going to test running a few Lotus Petal and Ancient Tomb in place of some land and Dark Rituals to open up a few more slots in the MD. I don't like running 4 progenitus because they're dead without S&T, and I've had bad experiences getting raced by Zoo / Goblins when I had turn 3 Progenitus.
I was originally running 1 Pandemonium 1 All Sun's Dawn as kill, but it's generally worse than Cruel Ultimatum or Time Stretch.

2 Progenitus
3 Cruel Ultimatum
4 Dream Halls
4 Conflux
4 Show and Tell
3 Dark Ritual
4 Brainstorm
3 Sensei's Top
4 Lim Dul's Vault
4 duress/thoughtseize
3 Force of Will
1 Cunning Wish
4 Polluted Delta
2 Misty Rainforest
1 Underground Sea
9 Island
5 Swamp

The S/B is largely unsettled, but it looks sometime like this:
2 Ravenous Trap
2 Relic of Progenitus
4 Spell Pierce
2 Echoing Truth
1 Pact of Negation
1 Dark Ritual
3 xxxx (Possibly Innocent Blood to help shore up aggro matchups)

Forbiddian
01-13-2010, 04:25 AM
I'm surprised that you don't have to defend against your opponent's using your own Dream Halls very often.


Storm Combo players could pitch a black spell to cast Ad Nauseum, then dig out Silence, Orim's Chant, or Pact of Negation (pitch a blue spell instead of paying 0). I don't have much experience playing Dream Halls, but that would seem to be a pretty smooth move.

You're still capable of getting Conflux on the stack, but if your opponent, say, Ad Nauseums, gets a kill, and silences you in response to the Conflux, is there a Conflux pile that could keep you alive?

Julian23
01-13-2010, 04:38 AM
Pact of Negation (pitch a blue spell instead of paying 0)

Even when played via Dream Halls one hast to pay the upkeep or lose the game.

Maveric78f
01-13-2010, 05:11 AM
I'm surprised that you don't have to defend against your opponent's using your own Dream Halls very often.


Storm Combo players could pitch a black spell to cast Ad Nauseum, then dig out Silence, Orim's Chant, or Pact of Negation (pitch a blue spell instead of paying 0). I don't have much experience playing Dream Halls, but that would seem to be a pretty smooth move.

You're still capable of getting Conflux on the stack, but if your opponent, say, Ad Nauseums, gets a kill, and silences you in response to the Conflux, is there a Conflux pile that could keep you alive?

You're right. One might need a SB card to fight this. I propose:
- to search for 2 counterspells, 1 FoW and 1 black: Countersquall (can be hard casted, might kill), Perplex (can be played, might tutor something), Undermine (might kill too).
- to search for Misdirection in order to own opponent's chant. But as you reveal the cards you search for, your opponent might as well go off.
- to search for a combo kill card: extract or hide/seek

dearleader > You agree that the package I play is the best but you don't play it. I can't the reason why. I agree with you when you say that 4*Progenitus is too many. I'd play either 2 or 3. According to me the list must follow something not far from this:

Manabase 24
15 coloured lands
5 2 mana lands
4 Petals

Combo 16
4*Conflux
1*Ultimatum
1*Bounce
1*Nucklavee
3*SnT
4*DH
2*Prog

Search/Draw/Manipulation 11
2*Mystical Tutor
4*Brainstorm
3*Top
2*Fact or Fiction

Protection 9
4*FoW
3*Seize
2*Spell Snare

Black is really subpar MD, but it might take more importance post SB. Or it might be cut and play more Spell Snare and Spell Pierce instead. And in SB to fight extirpate, you may want to have another Ultimatum (discard 6 is generally better than extirpate).

About the SB:
1*Hide/Seek or Countersquall
4*protection slots (more seize, pierce, snares, Pact of Negation)
4*anti graveyard
4*More bounces (hibernation, rebuild, rushing river)
2*Meditate (control MU)

dearleader
01-13-2010, 07:01 AM
The only reason I don't play it is because I don't see the need to have a dedicated win package. The difference between killing your opponent outright and leaving them at -6 cards, -2 creatures, - 10 life, with yourself holding a handful of counters, a utility spell off Cunning Wish, a Progenitus in play and +10 life is minor. Perhaps Lands could answer that if they have more than 1 Maze of Ith so that I can't go Cunning Wish -> Wipe Away, Cruel Ultimatum, and end the turn holding 3 FoWs. It's just that all else being equal, I'd rather have the 2 additional CU to combo off than Nucklavee and a bounce spell.

What's the reason behind running 3 S&T? I see that you're running mystical tutors to grab them (instead of Vault, which i like because i've been boarding out vault against spell snare), but I always want to see S&T. When I've played against control, they've almost always countered S&T because of the threat of progenitus. It helps so much in trying to resolve Dream Halls / Conflux in the long game.

What's the reasoning behind 2 FoF? I was originally running 2 cunning wish until I felt it was too slow. Is FoF just there to combat against discard and Counter top?

Maveric78f
01-13-2010, 07:25 AM
Maybe you're right about the unnecessary kill package even if it does not work against Ichorid, Survival or Echantress (and sometimes tribal that has overextended). For this last reason, I'd still play 4 Cruel Ultimatum and maybe only 3 Confluces then (in order to be able to kill). But then you lack a bounce MD, which is always cool to have with Mystical Tutor. So I don't know...

FoF is against counterspells, discard and it helps to combo. With FoF + 2*blue spells in hand, you can try to combo efficiently. The classical play remains to play it at end of turn, untap and to start comboing at your turn.

Bahamuth
01-13-2010, 07:34 AM
What are you trying to counter with Spell Snare in your mainboard?

What's the point of Nucklavee? Are there any relevant instants you can return?

What do you want to bounce in game one?

Maveric78f
01-13-2010, 08:34 AM
Spell Snare:
Counterbalance, chalice, hate bear, hymn to tourach, tarmogoyf, qasali. All the hate is 2CC. And some of this hate is heavily played MD.

Nucklavee: Fact or Fiction, the instant U-bounce that will bounce Nucklavee and so on...

In game 1, there is not much thing I need to bounce, you're right. But this might happen with gaddock, meddling mage and counterbalance.

Bahamuth
01-13-2010, 11:40 AM
Spell Snare:
Counterbalance, chalice, hate bear, hymn to tourach, tarmogoyf, qasali. All the hate is 2CC. And some of this hate is heavily played MD.

Nucklavee: Fact or Fiction, the instant U-bounce that will bounce Nucklavee and so on...

In game 1, there is not much thing I need to bounce, you're right. But this might happen with gaddock, meddling mage and counterbalance.

What reason do you even have to run Dream Halls combo over ANT at this point if Chalice and CB are hate cards to you? How exactly is Chalice going to prevent you from casting Dream Halls into Conflux Ultimatum Progenitus stuff? How is Counterbalance going to achieve that? No one runs hate bears mainboard. And as far as I'm concerned, a combo deck like this doesn't want to waste cards on countering stuff like Goyfs that only become relevant aften you should have won the game already. Pridemage is really the only card on your list that does make sense. Doesn't seem worth it to run Snares for that.

I doubt the Nucklavee is good. You never want to see it in your hand unless you already have cast a FoF and you are comboing, and at that point you're probably winning. You can easily win without Nucklavee when comboing through Conflux.

The fact that it might happen is definitely not a good reason to play a card you never want to see otherwise.

dearleader
01-13-2010, 04:09 PM
Maybe you're right about the unnecessary kill package even if it does not work against Ichorid, Survival or Echantress (and sometimes tribal that has overextended). For this last reason, I'd still play 4 Cruel Ultimatum and maybe only 3 Confluces then (in order to be able to kill). But then you lack a bounce MD, which is always cool to have with Mystical Tutor. So I don't know...

FoF is against counterspells, discard and it helps to combo. With FoF + 2*blue spells in hand, you can try to combo efficiently. The classical play remains to play it at end of turn, untap and to start comboing at your turn.

I'm running 1 Cunning Wish maindeck to grab a bounce spell if I win off of Conflux. This grabs bounce against Enchantress and graveyard hate against Survival and Ichorid. If I draw the Cunning Wish, it can grab Dark Ritual for acceleration, or it can grab Pact of Negation for protection. Regardless, I think it's a close call whether to run a kill package.

I'll try FoF, at least in the board. Even though it's slower it still seems better than Meditate.


What reason do you even have to run Dream Halls combo over ANT at this point if Chalice and CB are hate cards to you? How exactly is Chalice going to prevent you from casting Dream Halls into Conflux Ultimatum Progenitus stuff? How is Counterbalance going to achieve that? No one runs hate bears mainboard. And as far as I'm concerned, a combo deck like this doesn't want to waste cards on countering stuff like Goyfs that only become relevant aften you should have won the game already. Pridemage is really the only card on your list that does make sense. Doesn't seem worth it to run Snares for that.

I doubt the Nucklavee is good. You never want to see it in your hand unless you already have cast a FoF and you are comboing, and at that point you're probably winning. You can easily win without Nucklavee when comboing through Conflux.

The fact that it might happen is definitely not a good reason to play a card you never want to see otherwise.

The combo itself isn't affect by countertop or Chalice, and neither of these cards affects Dream Halls as much as ANT. However, the fact that they blank so many cantrips can make it difficult to go off with counter protection, giving countertop a huge advantage in the mid-late game, where otherwise Dream Halls would have no problems against control.
Hymn and Pridemage are also pretty important. I'm not sure if that makes Spell Snare is worth, or if Spell Pierce isn't better.

The problem with the win condition is that you'll generally have to have dead cards if you want to win in one turn. The only win condition that doesn't have dead cards is Time Stretch, which you can cast off DH to spend 2 turns grabbing the combo.

Darkenslight
01-14-2010, 06:48 AM
I wonder, if we're splashing White, whether Suppression Field may not abe a good sideboard card, as it stops a number of key Legacy cards (Top and Pridemage, primarily), and it has little impact on your deck; the only cards really affected are your fetches.

ktkenshinx
01-14-2010, 10:55 AM
Some matchup information, courtesy of the Excel spreadsheet from the SCG Dallas/Ft. Worth Open.

Three Dream Halls decks placed quite well in the tournament, each one enjoying a winning record throughout the day against a range of decks. We only have the decklist for one of them (Mr. Ed Novak's, presented below), but we have matchup data for all three of them. There are some slight and interesting differences between Novak's deck (19th overall at the event) and Harbili's (not to mention the GP Madrid decklist). These will be worth talking about; these lists represent our only evidence-based discussion of Dream Halls. They actually placed well at tournaments, despite what naysayers about the build and the strategy say.

Dream Halls
By Ed Novak
19th Place at SCG Dallas/Ft. Worth Legacy Open

Lands: 17
4 Ancient Tomb
2 Flooded Strand
2 Misty Rainforest
2 Polluted Delta
2 Scalding Tarn
5 Island

Creatures: 5
3 Simian Spirit Guide
1 Bogardan Hellkite
1 Progenitus

Artifacts and Enchantments: 8
4 Lotus Petal
4 Dream Halls

Instants: 16
4 Brainstorm
4 Force Of Will
4 Mystical Tutor
4 Pact Of Negation

Sorcery: 14
4 Conflux
3 Cruel Ultimatum
3 Ponder
4 Show And Tell

Sideboard: 15
2 Relic Of Progenitus
1 Tsabo's Web
4 Blue Elemental Blast
3 Mindbreak Trap
4 Nix
1 Iona, Shield Of Emeria

The deck trades alternate strategies (Progenitus beats, for instance) in favor of maximum speed, with 3 Spirit Guides and a full set of Petals. The deck favors Mystical Tutor to LDV, a decision that I am not sure is ideal; Tutor cannot find the main combo piece, and that is a huge strike against a combo deck that runs it. Pact of Negation replaces Thoughtseize as the second set of disruption cards, but I imagine this would be a serious liability in matchups like Zoo (Pridemage), where you can't even use Pact before you combo out.

The Sideboard is full of interesting ideas. The Mindbreak traps give Halls an almost guaranteed ability to race ANT, with Blue Elemental Blast giving similar power in the Belcher matchup (not to mention Goblins, Zoo, Burn, etc.) Nix is an excellent alternative to Spell Pierce, given that they will probably be aimed at the same things: Daze and FoW. Iona also provides an additional boost, although I wonder how many times Novak actually used her in his day.

Overall I like the changes to Harbili's list that Novak implemented, except for one. The lack of Progenitus would be a serious problem in the long run of testing. SnT --> Progenitus is an amazing combo that can consistently get online on turn 2. If on the play, you will be well-positioned to end the game quickly. This is especially powerful in the control matchup, which, as we will shortly see, Novak did not actually face all day.

Now, onto the matchups. Here is the data for Novak's deck, and then that for Dustin Buckingham and Andrew Shugar.

Dream Halls by Ed Novak (19th Overall)
Game 1: ANT, Won 2-0 (1-0)
Game 2: Enchantress, Lost 0-2 (1-1)
Game 3: Survival, Lost 1-2 (1-2)
Game 4: Aggro Loam, Won 2-0 (2-2)
Game 5: Dredge, Won 2-1 (3-2)
Game 6: Boros Aggro, Won 2-0 (4-2)
Game 7: Belcher Combo, Won 2-0 (5-2)

Dream Halls by Dustin Buckingham (28th Overall)
Game 1: UW Control, Won 2-0 (1-0)
Game 2: Countertop, Lost 0-2 (1-1)
Game 3: Countertop, Won 2-0 (2-1)
Game 4: Natural Order Bant, Won 2-0 (3-1)
Game 5: Fish, Lost 0-2 (3-2)
Game 6: Threshold, Won 2-0 (4-2)
Game 7: Fish, Lost 1-2 (4-3)

Dream Halls by Andrew Shugar (36th Overall)
Game 1: ANT, Won 2-0 (1-0)
Game 2: Belcher, Lost 1-2 (1-1)
Game 3: Natural Order Bant, Lost 0-2 (1-2)
Game 4: Zoo, Won 2-1 (2-2)
Game 5: Burn, Lost 1-2 (2-3)
Game 6: ANT, Won 2-0 (3-3)
Game 7: Goblins, Won 2-0 (4-3)

Much of this tournament data confirms my own testing in the initial primer. ANT was largely a favorable matchup, and I imagine Belcher remains so (the 1-2 loss suggests that Shugar probably drew poorly and/or Belcher drew well). Merfolk was a nightmare, as predicted, and the dedicated Aggro decks were largely out-combod. I am surprised to see the back-to-back countertop matchups. In the first, Buckingham gets crushed 0-2. But then he pulls back on top for a 2-0 win. I am still confident that the Countertop mtachup is terrible, so I must chalk up the second win to luck of the draw or brilliant/stupid play on one or both player's parts.

-ktkenshinx-

Brizzle
01-14-2010, 01:12 PM
Might Sphinx of the Steel Wind be a good SB card for the Zoo matchup?

dsg123456789
01-14-2010, 01:19 PM
Why is the Cruel Ultimatum kill better than using Conflux to get Progenitus, Magister Sphinx, and Dragon Breath? It kills the opponent no matter what their life total, and it only has a single non-SnT-able card (dragon breath).

Shawon
01-14-2010, 01:22 PM
Dragon Breath can't enchant Progenitus. Also, a hasty Magister Sphinx kills in two turns, and it is prone to removal.

Maveric78f
01-14-2010, 01:55 PM
A Ur list with burning wish is conceivable. Especially since scalding tarn is legal, and then anger would replace Dragon Breath quite efficiently. BW searches for either conflux or SnT. And red provides Reb in SB. It's nice on paper but in my testings it was damageable to have (crucial) 2CC spells in a deck that is normally Spell Snare proof.

I also like a lot the ability to play fire/ice. MD hate bear removal time walk, and pitchable to play BW with DH.

AcidFiend
01-14-2010, 06:18 PM
I don't aspire to play this deck but I wanted to give props to the original poster for the great primer.

caenel
01-15-2010, 04:03 AM
Hey guys,

I'm going to take Dream Halls to a tourney this saturday, but I'm still looking for a decent sideboard. I'm expecting a meta of a decent number of Goblins, some ANT, some Merfolk, a couple of Bant (NO & no NO) and then some random others (Zoo, Landstill, Rock).
So far, my sideboard will look like this (fairly straightforward):

3 Propaganda
4 Spell Pierce
2 Duress
2 Meditate
2 Hydroblast
2 Pithing Needle

I'm thinking to replace the Meditates with Massacre. I'm just a bit concerned running into a decent number of hatebears (Teeg, Cannonist) and I think Massacre might be a good answer here (all hatebears are white, so plains should be a given and I'm playing USea, so swamps should work out too).

What do you guys think about it? What would be a good sideboard in a meta as given above?

PS: I don't have any bounce in the side, since I'll be playing a Nucklavee list with a maindeck copy of Wipe Away and Echoing Truth.

Hopo
01-15-2010, 04:08 AM
You might want to know that Gaddock Teeq shut's down Massacre.

Also, Mindbreak trap might be useful if you are facing lots of storm.

eq.firemind
01-15-2010, 04:15 AM
I'm thinking to replace the Meditates with Massacre. I'm just a bit concerned running into a decent number of hatebears (Teeg, Cannonist) and I think Massacre might be a good answer here (all hatebears are white, so plains should be a given and I'm playing USea, so swamps should work out too).

Unfortunately, Massacre costs 4, wich means you can't cast it with Teeg in play.
<beaten by Hopo>
A little piece of information: I've played against Dream Halls with my WG Survival/DnT mix. I run 4 hatebears (3 Teeg+1 Canonist) main and 2 more in side. We played 5 games, I win 4, lost 1. Cards that won me games were Wasteland (mainly), hatebears and Krosan Grip. I lost a game due to turn 2 or 3 Show and Tell into Prog. The close game was the one with Show and Tell into Prog in turn 5. I pulled that one on the back of multiple Tarmos, Children of Korlis and Aven Mindcensor, but it was still close.
I guess Show and Tell is good against hatebears.

dearleader
01-15-2010, 04:58 AM
Dream Halls
By Ed Novak
19th Place at SCG Dallas/Ft. Worth Legacy Open

Lands: 17
4 Ancient Tomb
2 Flooded Strand
2 Misty Rainforest
2 Polluted Delta
2 Scalding Tarn
5 Island

Creatures: 5
3 Simian Spirit Guide
1 Bogardan Hellkite
1 Progenitus

Artifacts and Enchantments: 8
4 Lotus Petal
4 Dream Halls

Instants: 16
4 Brainstorm
4 Force Of Will
4 Mystical Tutor
4 Pact Of Negation

Sorcery: 14
4 Conflux
3 Cruel Ultimatum
3 Ponder
4 Show And Tell

Sideboard: 15
2 Relic Of Progenitus
1 Tsabo's Web
4 Blue Elemental Blast
3 Mindbreak Trap
4 Nix
1 Iona, Shield Of Emeria

The deck trades alternate strategies (Progenitus beats, for instance) in favor of maximum speed, with 3 Spirit Guides and a full set of Petals. The deck favors Mystical Tutor to LDV, a decision that I am not sure is ideal; Tutor cannot find the main combo piece, and that is a huge strike against a combo deck that runs it. Pact of Negation replaces Thoughtseize as the second set of disruption cards, but I imagine this would be a serious liability in matchups like Zoo (Pridemage), where you can't even use Pact before you combo out.

The Sideboard is full of interesting ideas. The Mindbreak traps give Halls an almost guaranteed ability to race ANT, with Blue Elemental Blast giving similar power in the Belcher matchup (not to mention Goblins, Zoo, Burn, etc.) Nix is an excellent alternative to Spell Pierce, given that they will probably be aimed at the same things: Daze and FoW. Iona also provides an additional boost, although I wonder how many times Novak actually used her in his day.


I think cutting Vault is a reasonable choice. It's the only card in the deck that eats spell snare against control, and it's relatively slow against aggro. I've been considering a build that plays Mystical Tutor with 8 S&T targets and fewer cards to cast off Dream Halls. I don't understand why he wouldn't run more S&T targets, since Mystical Tutor is basically a Vault that doesn't find the permanents. Running 8-9 S&T targets with 4 S&T and 4 Mystical seems reasonable.

Without Vault, the singleton Iona seems really random too. Are there any situations anyone can think of where you need Iona after you combo off in order to win?

The argument against Thoughtseize is that you lose 2 life and a card even when there is nothing relevant to take. Losing a colored card can be crucial when the deck needs 4 in hand to win consistently via S&T-Dream Halls. The fact that it's free speeds up the deck a bit. It also lets him go mono-blue, which could be a minor advantage.

Maveric78f
01-15-2010, 05:05 AM
Hey guys,

I'm going to take Dream Halls to a tourney this saturday, but I'm still looking for a decent sideboard. I'm expecting a meta of a decent number of Goblins, some ANT, some Merfolk, a couple of Bant (NO & no NO) and then some random others (Zoo, Landstill, Rock).
So far, my sideboard will look like this (fairly straightforward):

3 Propaganda
4 Spell Pierce
2 Duress
2 Meditate
2 Hydroblast
2 Pithing Needle

I'm thinking to replace the Meditates with Massacre. I'm just a bit concerned running into a decent number of hatebears (Teeg, Cannonist) and I think Massacre might be a good answer here (all hatebears are white, so plains should be a given and I'm playing USea, so swamps should work out too).

What do you guys think about it? What would be a good sideboard in a meta as given above?

PS: I don't have any bounce in the side, since I'll be playing a Nucklavee list with a maindeck copy of Wipe Away and Echoing Truth.

In an aggro metagame, the Ur version is the best.


// Lands
2 [B] Volcanic Island
3 [TE] Ancient Tomb
4 [ZEN] Scalding Tarn
2 [EX] City of Traitors
4 [UNH] Island
1 [ZEN] Misty Rainforest
1 [ON] Flooded Strand
2 [ON] Polluted Delta
1 [OV] Mountain

// Creatures
2 [CFX] Progenitus
1 [CFX] Magister Sphinx
2 [M10] Bogardan Hellkite

// Spells
4 [SH] Dream Halls
4 [FNM] Brainstorm
3 [AP] Fire/Ice
4 [AL] Force of Will
2 [CFX] Conflux
4 [JU] Burning Wish
3 [CHK] Sensei's Divining Top
4 [TE] Lotus Petal
4 [ZEN] Spell Pierce
3 [US] Show and Tell

// Sideboard
SB: 1 [CFX] Conflux
SB: 1 [US] Show and Tell
SB: 2 [IA] Pyroclasm
SB: 2 [B] Red Elemental Blast
SB: 1 [SHM] Firespout
SB: 1 [RAV] Compulsive Research
SB: 3 [ALA] Relic of Progenitus
SB: 1 [IA] Anarchy
SB: 1 [US] Meltdown
SB: 2 [OV] Pyroblast
I love how Spell Pierce and Fire/Ice are complementary to fight against hate.

Actually, as it's strong against aggro, I'm considering playing -4 Lotus petal and +3 Ponder +1 Fire/ice.

caenel
01-15-2010, 05:09 AM
@Hopo: My bad, I should have noticed. Sometimes my mind thinks it had a genial thought, but in the end, these thoughts almost always end up coming back to bite me :-)
Scrap the Massacre idea :-)

Fatestitcher
01-15-2010, 10:08 AM
What do you guys think about it? What would be a good sideboard in a meta as given above?


i will try 3-4 deathmark or slaughter pact.

Darkenslight
01-16-2010, 08:47 AM
i will try 3-4 deathmark or slaughter pact.

In a heavy aggro meta, I'd consider 3-4 Deathmark (for Bears of Hat), and possibly 2-3 Flashfreeze for reactive answers to Teeg and Blood Moon (as examples).

Xentra
01-16-2010, 11:30 AM
What do you think of cutting brainstorm / ponder from the MD, using lim-duls vault, impulse, mulldrifter, ... as replacement. This opens us up for chalice of the void as MD protection since we can make an easy 2 mana in the first turn.

However I don't know if we should focus on this sort of protecting, but chalice is also a target for pridemage and other removal that could hurt dream halls.

ktkenshinx
01-16-2010, 11:55 AM
What do you think of cutting brainstorm / ponder from the MD, using lim-duls vault, impulse, mulldrifter, ... as replacement. This opens us up for chalice of the void as MD protection since we can make an easy 2 mana in the first turn.

However I don't know if we should focus on this sort of protecting, but chalice is also a target for pridemage and other removal that could hurt dream halls.
Cutting Brainstorm is a horrible idea in the deck, especially given the manabase that most builds are using. With anywhere from 7-10 fetchlands, Brainstorm is maximized as a draw spell. Additionally, the classic Brainstorm in response to discard will protect critical combo pieces. Removing the one mana instant would be a travesty for the deck.

Ponder, however, could possibly be ditched for Impulse. Their digging power is comparable, and a brief comparison will show the strengths vs. weaknesses of the two.

Ponder:
1. Look at top 3 cards.
Impulse
1. Look at top 4 cards.
(Impulse has more immediate digging)

Ponder
2. Put them back on top OR on bottom
Impulse
2. Put them on bottom
(If you see at least 1 card that you want in the top few cards, for instance, a Halls and a Show and Tell, then you can keep them there for later use. With Impulse, you can only take one)

Ponder
3. Draw a card
Impulse
3. Choose one and put it into your hand
(Both spells give you one card)

Ponder
4. Sorcery
Impulse
4. Instant

Both of these spells net you one card. The big difference is that Ponder lets you keep cards on top of your library if you want; a common occurrence for anyone that has played this deck a few times. Impulse digs an extra card, but that is almost to your disadvantage. If you stumble across two combo pieces in that digging, you will be forced to put one on the bottom of your library.

The difference between Instant and Sorcery are negligent in this deck, with only 4 FoW as countermagic (in some builds, at least), and only one non-combo related spell to cast during the main phase (Thoughtseize). If you are running a build with more countermagic, especially countermagic that must be hardcasted, like Nix and Spell Pierce, then Impulse becomes much better. Otherwise, Ponder is the superior choice.

-ktkenshinx-

deadlock
01-16-2010, 12:10 PM
Some notes:
- Dont cut Brainstorm or Ponder, both do exactly what the deck wants to do.
- Burning Wish looks very strong, its comparable to Lim Duls Vault, with the advantage that it doesnt cost you life and doesnt create card disadvantage.
Also it reduces the number of "dead" / redundant cards in the maindeck and makes Cruel Ulti unnecessary - what do you want more?
- I think its a mistake to go below 4 Progentitus, especially with Wish in the picture giving you a total of 7 Show and Tell.
- Fire / Ice in a combo deck? I dont like that at all. It doesnt kill any real beaters and well Pridemage.. i dont think he is the biggest problem for the deck.

My list for reference, its close to Maveric's with a few sublte differences stated above:

"Burning Dreams"

// Lands
4 [TE] Ancient Tomb
1 [ON] Polluted Delta
6 [ZEN] Island (1)
2 [B] Volcanic Island
1 [ON] Flooded Strand
1 [ZEN] Mountain (3)
4 [ZEN] Scalding Tarn

// Creatures
1 [M10] Bogardan Hellkite
4 [CFX] Progenitus

// Spells
3 [TE] Lotus Petal
4 [ZEN] Spell Pierce
3 [CHK] Sensei's Divining Top
4 [SH] Dream Halls
4 [CST] Brainstorm
4 [JU] Burning Wish
3 [US] Show and Tell
3 [CFX] Conflux
4 [AL] Force of Will
4 [M10] Ponder

// Sideboard
SB: 1 [US] Show and Tell
SB: 1 [CFX] Conflux
SB: 1 [SHM] Firespout
SB: 1 [OD] Concentrate
SB: 1 [US] Meltdown
SB: 1 [10E] Time Stretch
SB: 3 [ALA] Relic of Progenitus
SB: 3 [B] Red Elemental Blast
SB: 1 [IA] Anarchy
SB: 1 [CHK] Eye of Nowhere
SB: 1 [TO] Overmaster

Dont nail me on all the board choices, some are just fillers till something better is found.
Besides going for Show and Tell into Progenitus / Hellkite, the mainkill of Dream Halls and Conflux is, to put a Progenitus into play and get the Time Stretch out of the board.
I had a Cruel and All Suns Dawn in the board, but for now there unnecessary imo.
I am considering a third splash colour, either black for Seize and Deathmark or green mainly for Reverent Silence. Having the basic Mountain and overall tons of basics makes a real difference against decks packing Waste (obvious kinda).
Besides Progenitus who is out of question, i am not sure if Hellkite is the best choice, i am also considering other creatures like Iona or Sphinx - any opinions on that matter?

Gocho
01-16-2010, 02:00 PM
If you want to use Burning wish, I will add a Tendrils in your Sideboard. You can play 9 spells chaining the conflux's and play it for 20 damage as alternate win condition.

And Pulverize is better that Meltdown.

Maveric78f
01-16-2010, 06:48 PM
I am happy to see that other people are experiencing Ur builds. I have a lot to say but no time for the moment.

Maveric78f
01-17-2010, 05:48 AM
I think its a mistake to go below 4 Progentitus, especially with Wish in the picture giving you a total of 7 Show and Tell.
Actually, I play 2 Prog (2 turns) + 2 Hellkite (3 turns or sweep the opposing weenies + 4 turns) + 1 Sphinx (2 turns). They are 5 cards (outside from DH) that make my SnT superior to everything in the format.

I love this setup. It kills infinite life combo, it's all SnTable. I felt that I didn't need more Conflux MD. It's the minimum to search for both Hellkites. I love tops that are awesome against anything that is not aggro. I love Firespout and Fire/Ice that are awesome against aggro. It feels really well balanced between the aggro and control MU. After SB blue decks are definitely not a problem (-4 F/I +4 REB).

Actually, now I can't think of any advantage of playing B over R for the splash. R provides BW which is the best tutor. It offers good solutions against aggro that enables you to gain some time and therefore remove petals that are card disadvantage. And finally, against control it plays 4 REB in SB, so that blue decks are not anymore a problem (well, merfolk is still not easy).

My updated list. Not very different from the previous one. The main MD difference is that I removed the petals. In SB, I adapted a bit, but I'm still unsure about a lot of things.


// Lands
3 [B] Volcanic Island
3 [TE] Ancient Tomb
4 [ZEN] Scalding Tarn
2 [EX] City of Traitors
4 [UNH] Island
1 [ZEN] Misty Rainforest
1 [ON] Flooded Strand
2 [ON] Polluted Delta
1 [OV] Mountain

// Creatures
2 [CFX] Progenitus
1 [CFX] Magister Sphinx
2 [M10] Bogardan Hellkite

// Spells
4 [SH] Dream Halls
4 [FNM] Brainstorm
4 [AP] Fire/Ice
4 [AL] Force of Will
2 [CFX] Conflux
4 [JU] Burning Wish
3 [CHK] Sensei's Divining Top
4 [ZEN] Spell Pierce
3 [US] Show and Tell
2 [M10] Ponder

// Sideboard
SB: 1 [CFX] Conflux
SB: 1 [US] Show and Tell
SB: 2 [B] Red Elemental Blast
SB: 3 [SHM] Firespout
SB: 1 [RAV] Compulsive Research
SB: 3 [ALA] Relic of Progenitus
SB: 1 [IA] Anarchy
SB: 1 [US] Meltdown
SB: 2 [OV] Pyroblast

Some thoughts in random orders:
- don't forget that Hellkite has flash, so that we don't really need a solution to Glacial Chasm : just destroy Zuran Orb. Land Sphinx and wait your opponent for not paying anymore their Chasm upkeep. And Flash your hellkites in. You also have Fire/Ice to finish them.
- I don't think Pulverize is better than meltdown. I don't play a lot of mountains and Meltdown can be played for 3R. Okay it can't be played under DH, but I can't see any artifact being a real problem for the combo.
- I prefer Anarchy than bounces against annoying enchantments, because of Sterling Grove. Maybe I'm wrong because of Karmic Justice (and Glacial Chasm).
- Tendrils in SB is a bad kill, useless most of the time (if not always).
- Relic is SBed in almost only against Ichorid and it's not really convincing. Sometimes I wonder if it's worth it.

caenel
01-17-2010, 08:08 AM
Hey fellow sourcers,

I just finished 4th in the swiss in a small tourney in Aalst (Belgium) (only 14 ppl there, still GPT for Madrid with 3 byes on the line) with Dream Halls. Granted, the thread is moving slightly the other way at the moment, but I played a slight modification of the original UB list. Here's the list I used:

Maindeck:
3 Ancient Tomb
2 Flooded Strand
5 Island
2 Misty Rainforest
1 Polluted Delta
2 Scalding Tarn
2 Underground Sea

4 Lotus Petal

1 Duress
3 Thoughtseize

4 Brainstorm
4 Dream Halls
1 Echoing Truth
4 Force of Will
3 Ponder
4 Show and Tell
1 Wipe Away

4 Conflux
1 Cruel Ultimatum
4 Lim-Dl's Vault
1 Nucklavee
4 Progenitus

Sideboard:
3 Deathmark
2 Duress
3 Hydroblast
3 Propaganda
4 Spell Pierce

Here's how the tournament went:

R1: Jan (playing Lands.dec)
game 1: Jan wins the die roll and I keep a hand with most combo pieces but without Show and Tell. I do have a Brainstorm and a Ponder though, so I think I might find a needed card soon enough. Jan opens with Barbarian Ring into Gamble... I sigh of relief. I don't think this match can ever be won by Lands.dec, as the mostly play Chalice of the Void as combo protection (which has to be set at 3 and 5 against Halls to have any chance of winning, not counting my maindeck bounce). I use my card drawers to find me the needed cards and go for the combo kill with Nucklavee bounce on turn 4 (protected by Force).

Sideboarding: nothing
game 2: Jan elected to start, but I combo out with Nucklavee recursion on turn 2.
1-0-0

R2: Jelle (playing Countertop Bant)
game 1: I win the roll, but mulligan down to 5 this game and keep a hand with 1 land and some draw. By the time I find my combo pieces and protection, Jelle already has a clock down in Tarmogoyf and has a hand full of Dazes and Forces with Counterbalance on the table. I try, but just cannot get through.

Sideboarding: +2 Duress, +3 Deathmark, -2 Opt, -1 Lim-Dul's Vault, -2 Lotus Petal
game 2: Jelle expected a lot of combo, and it shows. He sideboards about 11 cards against me. I don't think this matchup is even winnable anymore now. I have to face: Qasali Pridemage, Gaddok Teeg, Ethersworn Cannonist, Trigon Predator, Force of Will, Daze, Counterbalance, Krosan Grip. There are about 22 cards in his deck now that screw me... I try anyway and when I go for the combo kill with double protection, I miscalculate and end up with Dream Halls in play and only Conflux in hand (I should have played differently to have an extra card in hand with the same outcome). Jelle elected to drop a Trigon Predator with Show and Tell. Bummer. Afterwards, he showed me a Cannonist in hand, so if I hadn't made the misplay, he would've dropped Cannonist with Show and Tell and I still had no way of going off that turn.
1-1-0

R3: Jo, I think, sorry if I got the name wrong (Aggro Loam)
game 1: I win the die roll and he gets a rather slow start with only a turn 3 Countryside Crusher and I can combo out the turn on my turn 4.

Sideboarding: +3 Hydroblast, -1 Opt, -1 Lotus Petal, -1 Duress
game 2: I mull down to 6 and I keep a hand with a lot of draw. He wins the mulligan war by going down to 5. Sadly, he plays a turn 2 Confidant to undo his mulligan. I meanwhile manage to use my draw spells to draw land and new draw spells. Gaddok Teeg comes down for my opponent and I cannot find anything usefull before going down.

Sideboarding: +3 Deathmark, -3 Hydroblast
game 3: I go first and keep. My opponent mulls to 6 again. I manage to get a Show and Tell for Dream Halls with Conflux and another card in hand on turn 4, and my opponent manages to make a misplay here. He drops a Terravore with Show and Tell, only to realize he cannot cast the Krosan Grip in his hands now (as Terravore was his only other green card and he was almost tapped out). Lucky for me. I think I might have gotten out of it though, as I had 5 mana on the board and if the Dream Halls would have gotten Gripped, I could've gotten another one with my Conflux and combo out next turn.
2-1-0

R4: Shawn (Tempo CounterTop)
Shawn is a teammate, playing a very odd build of Bant CounterTop. It uses Wastelands and Stifle like Tempo *****. Luckily we tested the evening before and I got my but kicked about 4 games to 1... Shawn is a gentleman though and scoops me into the top 4 (Top 4 play-off since we were less than 16 participants). Plan is that I get to play another person and win, and then play against a teammate in the finals.
We play a couple of games for fun though (no sideboarding) and I manage to win all of them (or maybe lose one or so, but we played like 4 games).
3-1-0

That's enough for a 4th place finish on tiebrakers. My round 1 opponent Jan just misses the cut by placing in 5th.
Bad news is that I have to play Wim (another teammate who already booked for Madrid) in the semi's. When the pairings are anounced, I immediately scoop and send him to the finals to hopefully get his byes. The match would've been tricky, but far from unwinnable. He's playing his own brew of cards, something like a control countertop build with tutorable artifacts and recursion loops. It has only few countermagic in there, so I definately had a shot (but I'm probably not going to be able to attend Madrid anyhow).

Sadly, Wim loses a close match with 2-1 in the finals against NO Bant.

Conclusion:
I'm rather pleased with the deck, but the problems it has fighting through hate are massive. I'm really thinking about splashing white for Chants or something.

Please give any suggestions/tricks you guys have experienced, I might be playing this deck again next week and would love to make the Bant match more winnable. :wink:

Tao
01-17-2010, 08:32 AM
Please give any suggestions/tricks you guys have experienced, I might be playing this deck again next week and would love to make the Bant match more winnable. :wink:

Bant has no solution, neither MD nor SB, for Progenitus. Don't side out Petals or Vaults, don't bring in Death Marks and go straight for the big man asap. Side out the Bounce for 2 Duress. Turn 2 will always win, turn 3 usually, turn 4 sometimes and even turn 5 can win if all Bant plays are Hate bears. And whatever chance you have winning with a turn 5 Progenitus, it is still way higher than trying to Combo through the Bant wall of hate.

Fatestitcher
01-17-2010, 04:03 PM
I go for the combo kill with double protection, I miscalculate and end up with Dream Halls in play and only Conflux in hand

In this scenario, Pact would have been golden. Would you consider running 2-3 Pacts of negation in your next list?

I see your maindeck bounce spells did not do well against those hatebears. Replacing 3 Ponders with M.tutors may work for you since you already have answers main deck. I run SDTs in my build but it's not the same for your case since you need blue cards to finish your combo. In Hellkite+CU kill I don't need pitch cards for lethal since most likely I'll draw it after 3 CUs..

Your list also have 1-of Duress vs Thoughtseize. In your matchups, which card proved more useful and would you consider sb'ing 3xThoughtseize instead to counter life loss?

caenel
01-18-2010, 03:38 AM
I go for the combo kill with double protection, I miscalculate and end up with Dream Halls in play and only Conflux in hand
In this scenario, Pact would have been golden. Would you consider running 2-3 Pacts of negation in your next list?

Well, Pact would have been OK, but in this situation, I just misplayed: He had double Daze, with me having 1 open mana. He Dazed 1 time and I Forced the Daze (since I was holding a Spell Pierce and wanted the mana for that one). I just had to pay for this Daze, then Force the second Daze. This would have left me with 1 more card in hand (the Spell Pierce).


I see your maindeck bounce spells did not do well against those hatebears. Replacing 3 Ponders with M.tutors may work for you since you already have answers main deck. I run SDTs in my build but it's not the same for your case since you need blue cards to finish your combo. In Hellkite+CU kill I don't need pitch cards for lethal since most likely I'll draw it after 3 CUs..

I did not really have much need that day for maindeck bounce spells, since I only ran into a hatebear in 2 games (one of which was Teeg, around who you can play). But I get your point. I'm pro and contra for Ponder (it switches). Sometimes I hate having to play Ponder (the sorcery speed sucks), but other times, I'm really thankful for Ponder as it shuffles unneeded cards away. I'm going to try out Mystical instead of Ponder, as I really see the benefit of getting that Conflux/Show and Tell/protection spell when needed.


Your list also have 1-of Duress vs Thoughtseize. In your matchups, which card proved more useful and would you consider sb'ing 3xThoughtseize instead to counter life loss?

To be honest, I would have played 4 Thoughtseize main, but only found 3 before the tournament. In retrospect, the 2 damage would matter in a Progenitus race. I think I would keep playing this configuration, as I often found myself taking Duress as extra protection piece with my second Conflux.

Maveric78f
01-18-2010, 05:24 AM
Set-up:
2 [CFX] Progenitus
1 [CFX] Magister Sphinx
2 [M10] Bogardan Hellkite
4 [AP] Fire/Ice
4 [AL] Force of Will
2 [CFX] Conflux
4 [JU] Burning Wish

How to combo efficiently with this set-up?

You can combo reliably with Conflux + any coloured card in hand, or Burning Wish + Red Card + any other coloured card.

Burning Wish Set-up

Let's start with the Burning Wish set-up which is somehow easier.

1/ BW, discard red card, search for Conflux in SB.
2/ Conflux#1, discard the other coloured card, search for FoW + Prog + Conflux#2 + Hellkite + Sphinx
3/ Conflux#2, discard Prog (and shuffle it in your library), search for FoW + Prog + Prog + Conflux#3 + Hellkite.
4/ Sphinx, discard Prog (and shuffle it in your library), opponent is at 10.
5/ Conflux#3, discard Prog (and shuffle it in your library), search for F/I + Prog + Prog + F/I.
6/ Hellkite, discard Prog (and shuffle it in your library), opponent is at 5.
7/ Hellkite, discard F/I, opponent is at 0.

How it can be interrupted and what are our solutions:
1/ Archive Trap in resp to Conflux#2. Just laugh, play Sphinx, Hellkite, Prog and pass.
2/ Mindbreak Trap in resp to Conflux#1. Well you're fucked up. But this does not happen if you play directly Conflux (you'll have FoW in hand). If you suspect Mindbreak Trap, you can spend 1 more turn to play Burning Wish and play DH the turn after.
3/ Extirpate on Conflux in resp to Conflux#2. Just search for F/I + Prog + Prog + Hellkite. You can still play the combo and keep a playable Prog if anything goes wrong. If the opponent swarmed you with creatures, then don't hesitate to direct Hellkite triggers at them.
4/ Krosan Grip in resp to BW, then search either for SnT or Conflux or a drawer (Compulsive Research). And try to recover.
5/ Chant in resp to DH. Just wait one more turn and hope you can survive this delay.
6/ Chant in resp to BW. Just wait one more turn and hope you can survive this delay.
7/ Ad Nauseum in resp to BW. You're a jerk. Never play DH against ANT/TES if you don't have any protection. Show and tell is the way you want to win in this MU.
8/ Any permanent preventing you from winning (Humility, Solitary Confinement, etc...). Just tutor F/I instead of FoWs, and BW instead of F/I. Play it off Prog to tutor Anarchy. Play anarchy off F/I. And combo. Anarchy is also your only chance against a resolved Iona.
9/ SS on BW. You're fucked up.


Conflux Set-up

1/ Conflux#1, discard the other coloured card, search for FoW + Prog + Conflux#2 + Hellkite + Sphinx
2/ Conflux#2, discard Prog (and shuffle it in your library), search for FoW + Prog + Prog + BW.
3/ BW, discard Prog (and shuffle it in your library), search for Conflux in SB.
4/ Conflux#3, discard Prog (and shuffle it in your library), search for F/I + Prog + Prog + Hellkite.
5/ Sphinx, discard Prog (and shuffle it in your library), opponent is at 10.
6/ Hellkite, discard Prog (and shuffle it in your library), opponent is at 5.
7/ Hellkite, discard F/I, opponent is at 0.

How it can be interrupted and what are our solutions:
1/ Archive Trap in resp to Conflux#2. Just laugh, play Sphinx, Hellkite, Prog and pass.
2/ Mindbreak Trap in resp to Conflux#2. FoW pitching Sphinx if you don't have any other solution. You'll win only 1 turn later. Don't bother to tutor 2 Hellkites, just land 1 Hellkite and 1 Prog and make your hand full of FoWs/Spell Pierces/REBs.
3/ Extirpate on Conflux in resp to Conflux#2. Just search for F/I + Prog + Prog + Hellkite. You can still play the combo and keep a playable Prog if anything goes wrong. If the opponent swarmed you with creatures, then don't hesitate to direct Hellkite triggers at them.
4/ Krosan Grip in resp to Conflux#1, then search for DH or SnT + Prog + Conflux#2 + BW + Sphinx.
5/ Chant in resp to DH. Just wait one more turn and hope you can survive this delay.
6/ Chant in resp to Conflux#1. Tutor FoW, REB (if you're playing against ANT/TES post SB) and stuff to pitch. Just wait one more turn and hope you can survive this delay. If your opponent has no W open and if you're quite sure he does not have AN in hand, you can safely play DH.
7/ Ad Nauseum in resp to Conflux#1. You're a jerk. Never play DH against ANT/TES if you don't have any protection. Show and tell is the way you want to win in this MU.
8/ Any permanent preventing you from winning (Humility, Solitary Confinement, etc...). Just tutor F/I instead of FoWs, and BW instead of F/I. Play it off Prog to tutor Anarchy. Play anarchy off F/I. And combo. Anarchy is also your only chance against a resolved Iona.
9/ Spell Snare on BW. Either play Prog and pass or Force pitching Force and continue the combo. It's often better not to counter spell SS in order to protect a resolved Prog.

Conclusion

The BW route is definitely the risky one. Avoid it if you can. Generally against blue decks, try first to exhaust your opponent from his counterspells before playing DH.

Against ANT/TES, SB out at least 2 DH, because they are too risky. Against Reanimator, SB out the SnT.

Kagehisa
01-18-2010, 06:44 PM
Blue have no chant effect but try 4x Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir in SB. XD

Infinitium
01-18-2010, 07:19 PM
12 red cards to pitch to Burning Wish looks like it's too few to reliably combo off 5 mana + Dream Halls alone, especially considering 4 of them are wish itself and the rest looks somewhat dubious to begin with (Conflux doesn't count for obv. reasons). Fire/Ice? Hellkite? I can sort of understand Hellkite instead of Ultimatum#4 for a number of reasons, but it seems lackluster in comparison with Progenitus since you don't run that kill to begin with. If you're that concerned with infinite life loops or Moat why not simply put a Sphinx in the sideboard instead of clogging the maindeck answerable threats?

Shawon
01-18-2010, 09:31 PM
Furthermore isn't the Nucklavee kill infinite?

Edit: I was thinking that the UB Talisman could replace Lotus Petal. It's permanent and gives you the colors you want anyway. It fits the tempo of UB Dream Halls, you can cast it, tap it for Ponder/Duress, and go off next turn.

Maveric78f
01-19-2010, 03:17 AM
12 red cards to pitch to Burning Wish looks like it's too few to reliably combo off 5 mana + Dream Halls alone, especially considering 4 of them are wish itself and the rest looks somewhat dubious to begin with (Conflux doesn't count for obv. reasons). Fire/Ice? Hellkite? I can sort of understand Hellkite instead of Ultimatum#4 for a number of reasons, but it seems lackluster in comparison with Progenitus since you don't run that kill to begin with. If you're that concerned with infinite life loops or Moat why not simply put a Sphinx in the sideboard instead of clogging the maindeck answerable threats?
I play 14 red cards. If don't get any of those I can still herdcast BW. I don't get where is the problem. About Hellkite over Ultimatum, the reason is simple: Hellkite is a very good card to SnT and in a Ur build I play virtually 7 SnT. The Ur build is not so good at finding DH, but in any case it can SnT something interesting (the less interesting is Sphinx).

And with BW, the SB is crowded. I wished I had some more room and I definitely won't play extra kills.

I've been defending the Cruel Ultimatum/Nucklavee/Bounce kill for a long time but these 3 cards are really not that good in the Ur build that does not need to bounce anything (F/I and BW do this job) and that needs to SnT things.

Playing only 2 Progenitus is a choice I made for the moment but I can see why one would prefer to play more. The 3rd and 4th copies could replace the Ponder/F/I slots. Actually, I feel often safer SnTing Hellkite than SnTing Progenitus.

I have chosen to include a kill in the turn because I don't empty my opponent's hand, but I often SB out Sphinx.


Furthermore isn't the Nucklavee kill infinite?
No. You'll deck yourself before make your opponent lose 40 life.

caenel
01-19-2010, 04:01 AM
Furthermore isn't the Nucklavee kill infinite?
No. You'll deck yourself before make your opponent lose 40 life.

The Nucklavee kill is infinite, as long as you play at least 3 Progenitus. Once you run low on cards in the deck, you start discarding Progenitus for every spell you cast (bounce, Nucklavee and Cruel Ultimatum), which nets you 3 cards (Progenitus) back in your deck upon resolution of Cruel Ultimatum. Just draw all 3 Progenitus and repeat over and over.

Maveric78f
01-19-2010, 04:38 AM
The Nucklavee kill is infinite, as long as you play at least 3 Progenitus. Once you run low on cards in the deck, you start discarding Progenitus for every spell you cast (bounce, Nucklavee and Cruel Ultimatum), which nets you 3 cards (Progenitus) back in your deck upon resolution of Cruel Ultimatum. Just draw all 3 Progenitus and repeat over and over.

Mmmmhh. I never realised that. Still it's difficult (and in most cases impossible) to reach the game state where you have only 3/4 Prog left in library. If you count the number of cards in hand:
Bounce: Nucklavee-Bounce-Pitch = -1 card
CU (pitching Nucklavee): Draw3+Nucklavee-CU-Nucklavee = +2 card
Nucklavee: Bounce+CU-Nucklavee-Pitch = 0 card
It means that you have only a CA of +1. Knowing that you play more than 1/3 of cards you can't pitch to play your spells (lands/petals/tops), it means that you can't rely on this "infinite kill".

Anyway, the deck does not need any infinite kill in most cases. The reason why I play an infinite kill in my Ur build is that this kill is the only one I could figure out with 100% good SnTable cards in 3 cards (not requiring any attack).

DireLemming
01-19-2010, 07:22 AM
Wouldn't Petals be better as Simian Spirit Guides to help with coloured spells (and sporadically a counter for Daze). Or at least a partial mix?

Fatestitcher
01-19-2010, 09:50 AM
Petals are better because you can cast them once your hand reaches maximum size. Adding SSGs after 3 or 4 Petals makes you win faster with Dream Halls. You'll need to cut cards for it though (Progenitus/Ponders/Tutors) which leads to lesser SnT>Progenitus kills on early turns OR difficulty in finding DH+CFX. You end up with a faster but less consistent deck that is also more susceptible to hatebears and relies heavily on good draws, like Belcher.:laugh:

Shawon
01-19-2010, 10:34 PM
I was thinking... How about this kill package?

4 Progenitus. 2 Time Stretch. That's it. Nothing else. No Nucklavee, Bogardan Hellkite, Cruel Ultimatum. Just 2 Time Stretch.

I know this sounds crazy, because this means your only way of winning is Prog beats, but hear me out.

These are what I believe to be the advantages:

- Prog + 1 Time Stretch usually equals 20 damage. However, with 2 Time Stretch, you can deal 40 damage if 20 isn't enough.
- If one Time Stretch gets discarded, you still have another one.
- Time Stretch is blue, so you can pitch it to Force of Will, but since you run 2 Time Stretch, you can actually pitch a Time Stretch to Force of Will to protect Dream Halls or Show and Tell, and then Conflux for the other Time Stretch. If you pitch a Nucklave/Cruel Ultimatum you probably just shot yourself in the foot.
- You can use the saved slots for additional bounce removal or counter protection. These extra saved slots can mean the world when you need to combo fast and find the right pieces and protect yourself.

Here's another way of looking at it:

(1 Wipe Away ) + 2 Time Stretch <= 1 Wipe Away + 1 Nucklavee + 1 Cruel Ultimatum <= 1 Magister Sphinx + 2 Bogardan Hellkite <= 4 Cruel Ultimatum + 1 Bogardan Hellkite

Really, I'm just advocating 4 Progenitus + 1 Time Stretch as the kill, but running a spare to pitch to FoW, or have a backup if one gets discarded, or use if 20 damage isn't enough.

DuKeLiO
01-20-2010, 05:15 AM
The problem with the Progenitus + Time Stretch kill is that you primary kill and your backup plan are "hateable" for the same cards. You can't win with Elephant Grass or Humility or Runed Halo or Moat for example.

Infinitium
01-20-2010, 08:17 AM
Sure you can. You'd still obviously still run bounce spells maindeck for the diversity they bring and the fact that they can still buy a turn or two versus aggro and board control decks.

odabella
01-20-2010, 08:49 AM
Maybe the 3-4 Ultimatums are better to play DH without Conflux. Besides you must play more bounce for multiple hate permanents.

EDIT: But 2 Extraturns seem nice too (Together with 2 Bounce -> 4 Slots)

Frid
01-20-2010, 06:35 PM
The big difference is that when you're comboing "blindly" with just two or three cards in hand other than conflux (which is always autowin), which happens quite often if you used show and tell or a force of will to protect the combo, if you cast a cruel ultimatum you'll probably win from that, but if you have a time stretch you're doing almost nothing. That is why killing with ultimatums is superior to anything else, apart from the suggested advantages of avoiding the combat step and other random things like glacial chasm or the like.

Fatestitcher
01-20-2010, 07:02 PM
currently my backup plan against GY hate:



4 Progenitus. 2 Time Stretch. That's it. Nothing else. No Nucklavee, Bogardan Hellkite, Cruel Ultimatum. Just 2 Time Stretch.

Darkenslight
01-21-2010, 05:10 AM
I wonder about Hostility's potential in a deck like this. Because it performs the same function as Progs for Conflux and Cruel Ultimatum. In addition, if I understand the Rules correctly, it converts each life from Cruel to a 3/1 with Haste.

Just a thought.

EDIT; Damn, oit doens't work that way. Boo.

citanul
01-21-2010, 05:40 AM
Hostility:
If a spell you control would deal damage to an opponent, prevent that damage.

Cruel:
Target opponent sacrifices a creature, discards three cards, then loses 5 life.

Damage is considered to be loss of life but loss of life isn't damage. This means that Hostility will not trigger on the 5 life loss from Cruel.

_perfido_
01-21-2010, 01:10 PM
What about the playing in a mirror match???

Yesterday I won g1 making my opponent resolving a Show and Tell, we both played a Dream Halls, then I Forced his Cruel, leaving him with an empty hand. In my turn I played Conflux, winning the match.

Starting from here, I decided to side in this way: -4 Progenitus -2 Vault -1 Show and Tell +4 Spell Pierce +2 Duress, with the idea to use again his own Show and Tell and/or Dream Halls, counter the spell played by Dream Hall and winning with his hand empty. And it was what exactly appened in g2 ^^

So, what do u think should be the right gameplan in a mirror match pre and post side???

_perfido_

Frid
01-21-2010, 02:22 PM
That is a nice gameplan against bad players, but against decent players you can't expect winning the round like that. I use to sb this way in the mirror match:

-3 progenitus
-3 show and tell
-2 lim-dl's vault

+4 s. pierce
+2 duress
+2 meditate


Card advantage is crucial in the mirror match, so I leave out cards that produce disadvantage (S&T and consequently progenitus, vaults), and sb in disruption and card advantage (meditate), taking the control role always, and just going off if I have duressed or thoughtseized the same turn or the turn before.

dearleader
01-21-2010, 08:55 PM
Top is the best card in the mirror match. The version that myself and a few friends play run 3 tops, and whoever lands it early wins ~75% of the time. It can make Lim Dul's Vault pretty backbreaking. Also, having lots cards to cast off Dream Halls helps greatly - you can sometimes power through counters by playing multiple cards of DH. There's some tricks you can do, like if you see that they still keep S&T post board, you can board out all the S&Ts and acceleration, and some Vaults, while keeping Progenitus to cast off their S&Ts. But how often are you expecting the mirror match?

The mirror match is kinda funny because it devolves into who blinks first by putting Dream Halls into play. Without S&T, the games last long enough for both players to sculpt their hand, so tapping mana to play DH usually means being on the losing end of a spell-pierce war.

Frid
01-22-2010, 10:08 AM
You play 6 duress to avoid such things. Neither you nor your opponent should try to go off in the first turns, so you have plenty of time to develop your board with lands to cast halls. And pierces should be used in your opponents cantrips and duresses OR if your opponent tries to go off, but not to defend yourself when comboing.
Playing dream halls off S&T means going off with 5 cards in hand at most, because dream halls will resolve 90% of the time, while facing an opponent with 7 cards. Not very promising, specially when you are left with just 3 cards after playing conflux or cruel ultimatum... That's why S&T has to be sideboarded out.

Michael Keller
01-22-2010, 01:04 PM
You play 6 duress to avoid such things. Neither you nor your opponent should try to go off in the first turns, so you have plenty of time to develop your board with lands to cast halls. And pierces should be used in your opponents cantrips and duresses OR if your opponent tries to go off, but not to defend yourself when comboing.
Playing dream halls off S&T means going off with 5 cards in hand at most, because dream halls will resolve 90% of the time, while facing an opponent with 7 cards. Not very promising, specially when you are left with just 3 cards after playing conflux or cruel ultimatum... That's why S&T has to be sideboarded out.

I firmly believe six discard effects to be too many in a deck of this foundation. You play cards like Ponder and Lim-Dul's Vault to set up your next draws, and in my eyes, it just seems like overkill. In my list, I currently run a protection suite which looks like this:

[4]x Force of Will
[3x] Thoughtseize
[1x] Duress

I just think some people have the misconception that this deck eats it pretty easily to hate. In my experiences, it actually can power through hate quite effectively. I run one Time Stretch in my build, as well as a single Ancestral Memories (http://mtg.windswalk.com/images/set_en/PT/41.jpg), which when played gets you the two-card combination you need to win the game; I've found it to be quite effective in testing. It's also a neat top-deck when you have no cards left in hand.

The single Time Stretch I run replaces the fourth Progenitus. I really do enjoy abusing Show and Tell, so I also maintain the Hellkite as well as something else. Show and Tell makes the world go 'round, here.

The list I run is a little unorthodox, but I've found it to work great. I'll have it up later as it is a home.

Frid
01-22-2010, 01:32 PM
You play six duress AFTER sideboarding in the mirror obviously. Maindeck you play just 4 thoughtseize.

Michael Keller
01-22-2010, 02:59 PM
You play six duress AFTER sideboarding in the mirror obviously. Maindeck you play just 4 thoughtseize.

Assuming you win game one, why would you put in two more Duress when you'll be on the draw? It makes more sense to be able to maintain your protection suite (with four discard spells and four Force of Will) as is and then substitute for Spell Pierce, which is far more effective than, say, boarding out the most critical component of the deck (being Show and Tell).

That card should never be sideboarded out, ever. All you're doing is depleting a fast start with discard spells. And, assuming your opponent has Brainstorm or a discard spell to start the game off, your newly inserted discard spell becomes useless. Remember, you are benefitting just as much as they are from either card.

It's like the Painter mirror: Board out the Painter's Servants and keep in the Grindstones. Same philosophy here, except Painter's Servant (on its own) is not even close to being as powerful as either a Dream Halls or Show and Tell play. I run a different sideboard as well as a different maindeck and I've tesed extensively against the mirror. And the one constant in each of those matches came down to one card:

Force of Will.

If you drop a Dream Halls off Show and Tell, you can immediately start wreaking havoc on an opponent. Which means they HAVE to stop that from hitting play because they will not get (effectively) another turn after you play either Conflux or Cruel Ultimatum. Thus, they need to stop it then and there. When they do, they have to pitch a card in the process to Force, oftentimes eliminating a card which would have won them the game off their Dream Halls turn. Both win conditions are sorcery speed, so when you extract your basic fundamental strategy of win first, you're putting yourself at risk.

Discard does help, and it helps in that it prevents you from having to pitch a card to Force of Will. Thankfully, the acceleration components in the deck force you to sacrifice a Lotus Petal or take damage off Ancient Tomb. Rarely, if ever, will an opponent begin the game with enough mana to prevent Spell Pierce from being effective in the mirror. Now you're capable of playing both discard and more countermagic, without having to pitch a key spell.

Example:

I was playing on MWS not too long ago. I play Show and Tell. Opponent Forces, pitching Progenitus. I Force back...forced to pitch Cruel Ultimatum. Show and Tell resolves and Dream Halls comes into play. I am left with a single card in hand. My opponent now has a single card left in their hand that does not comes into play off Show and Tell. My opponent draws a card for turn. My opponent proceeds to win, pitching Force of Will for Conflux.

This happens a lot in the mirror because you have to deplete your hand in order for the deck to be effective. Unless Cruel Ultimatum resolves, then you'll be putting yourself at card disadvantage. Point is, you already run enough discard that on the draw game two, discard won't matter. I have played more opponents who have been playing Brainstorm over Ponder, dead serious (because you are now allowed immediate access to your top three Vaulted cards).

And personally, I do not run four Thoughtseize in my main deck. There isn't a creature in the game that scares me with this deck. You run Vault, Tomb, Force, and Thoughtseize. That is just masochism. Three Thoughtseize and one Duress seem like a much better fit. I've even considered dumping Thoughtseize all together for Duress, particularly in this deck.

dearleader
01-23-2010, 01:47 AM
I agree that counters are better than discard; a lot of time you don't want empty your hand if you can avoid it, as there might not be any relevant cards to take. I've tested against ANT and the results were somewhat surprising, although a few bad draws for the ANT player may have skewed the results. FoW is the best card because stops your opponent from comboing without depleting your hand; the combo player has to find solutions to a force while you have the potential to combo off at any given turn. For the mirror, reactive protection has some advantages over discard.

However, S&T is not good in the mirror. It's card disadvantage, and, unless you've Duressed your opponent, a risky play. The only time I'd choose to play a Dream Halls in the mirror is if: 1) I have a hand that can beat one counterspell and 2) I've either Duressed and seen a weak hand, or he hasn't resolved a Lim Dul's Vault.

Hollywood, in your example game, why did you Force back when you only had 1 cad left in your hand? If you didn't force, you would have a grip of Dream Halls, Conflux, Force, and a blue card compared to his single card. I would be happy if my opponent blew a force on a non-essential part of the combo. It's actually very likely that his last card is a Conflux or Cruel Ultimatum, since it's the card you always want to keep in hand for the mirror, especially seeing as you were casting S&T. Also, he pitched a Progenitus to his FoW instead of putting it into play, suggesting that his last card is either a land or Conflux/Cruel Ultimatum - if it were anything else, he would have pitched that to the Force and put Progenitus in play, forcing you to topdeck ftw. Of course, I don't know much about the game state (whether either player has resolved a Vault, how many duress have been cast etc.)

Maveric78f
01-23-2010, 04:38 AM
SnT is bad in some MUs. Enchantress, mirror, reanimator to start with.
DH is bad in some MUs. Decks that have no answers to a big creature, ANT, Solidarity, and probably others.

Why would not you SB out bad cards?

However playing more than 4 discards is suicidal. Even 4 was too many according to me.

Frid
01-23-2010, 07:18 AM
Al least we agreed S&T has to be sideboarded out. But duress is the best card in the mirror. I don't see the point in not playing as many copies as I can.
No one plays solidarity nowadays and if someone dares to he will get crused 90% of the time, so I even won't consider it. And when facing ANT it is true that dream halls could be dangerous, but hey, a little of common sense, do not go off without having duressed or having protection. And you may apply this for their chants also... In any case, you have to take the control role in the matchup because they are faster, so you have to necessarily look for hands with disruption and/or counterspells.
It is true that against ANT the S&T + progenitus plan may be useful, so in this MU I don't sb it out, or just one copy of each at most. But surprisingly I found out that the matchup against ANT is in our favour, something that I really did not expect before testing it, which reinforces seriously my personal option to take this deck to the GP in Madrid next month.

Iron_Blood
01-23-2010, 04:56 PM
I been testing this deck and it has been great fun!

We should figure out the best kill condition for Dream halls.

As of right now I like the Nucklavee + Bounce + Cruel. I just like the idea of unlimited Cruels. Is it the best? Most likely not. In the first post of this thread we should start editing it for the kill cons then after a while figure out which one is the best.

Maveric78f
01-23-2010, 08:30 PM
We should figure out the best kill condition for Dream halls.
In french, we call this a marronnier (literally chestnut). It looks more like an old chestnut.

Iron_Blood
01-23-2010, 08:43 PM
Not to long ago I was thinking of Circu, Dimir Lobotomist (Whenever you cast a blue spell, exile the top card of target library. Whenever you cast a black spell, exile the top card of target library. Your opponents cant cast nonland cards with the same name as a card exiled with Circu, Dimir Lobotomist)

This does get threw any Runed Halo like things. If there was a combo that we could just remove the whole library from the game by playing the same spells over and over.

I know it is pretty far fetched and really narrow.. But I figure I would bring it up.

dearleader
01-23-2010, 09:16 PM
I also found the ANT MU to be slightly favorable. It's all about having FoW; making them play around countermagic while having the ability to go off any time after turn 2 is truly amazing. Also, Lim Dul's Vault is great in this match up - you can try to find a pile with 1-2 disruption spells and the missing combo piece, and then slow roll them.

If we start a discussion of kill conditions, we need to consider if running cards purely to win on the turn we combo off is worth it. IMO, it's not worth running cards that are otherwise dead just as a kill condition. We're guaranteed to get Progenitus, a handful of countermagic and duress, and often a single bounce spell, and there's not much that can effectively beat that. I play 3 Cruel Ultimatums that function as Conflux 5-7. My win package off Conflux is effectively 2-3 CU followed by a Progenitus backed by a handful of disruption. There's very few instances where that doesn't work, and I don't think it's worth running dead cards to account for those very marginal cases.
The only card that I think is worth running to win on the turn you combo off is Time Stretch, since you can play it off Dream Halls in a pinch to buy yourself some time.

I've had Sadistic Sacrament played against me, stripping me of all win cons except for 1 progenitus, and still won the game by chaining Confluxes to grab a grip of countermagic, duress, and a single cunning wish that became a bounce spell. Progenitus backed by that suite is often enough to win by itself.

caenel
01-25-2010, 08:19 AM
Another small tournament report from me, as I had another GPT yesterday. I barely missed top 8 by not being able to win the final match (but the 3rd round proved to be much more influencial). I'll first get my report underway, then post a couple of findings.

Here is the decklist I used (same as last week, except with Mystical Tutor instead of Ponder):

Maindeck:
3 Ancient Tomb
2 Flooded Strand
5 Island
2 Misty Rainforest
1 Polluted Delta
2 Scalding Tarn
2 Underground Sea

4 Lotus Petal

1 Duress
3 Thoughtseize

4 Brainstorm
4 Dream Halls
1 Echoing Truth
4 Force of Will
3 Mystical Tutor
4 Show and Tell
1 Wipe Away

4 Conflux
1 Cruel Ultimatum
4 Lim-Dl's Vault
1 Nucklavee
4 Progenitus

Sideboard:
3 Deathmark
2 Duress
3 Hydroblast
3 Propaganda
4 Spell Pierce

30 players showed up for the trial, so we had 5 rounds with a cut to top 8 afterwards. Normally 3-1-1 should get you there. Here's how it went for me:

R1: Jo Geeraerts (NO Bant)
I played Jo last week when he was playing Aggro Loam. I hoped for the same matchup, but he switched decks and was playing NO Bant this time. Damn, first round and I'm already up against a 'hate'-match. Ah wel.
game 1: We both mull to 6 this game and decide to keep them. I won the die roll and was playing. I get a good hand with a Brainstorm, a Thoughtseize and most of the combo kill in hand, along with some mana. The Brainstorm reveiled the rest of the kill and the Thoughtseize on turn 3 before going off shows me no answers in his hand. I play Show and Tell that turn into Dream Halls and go into Nucklavee recursion mode for the kill.

Sideboarding: -3 Dream Halls, -3 Conflux, -1 Lim-Dl's Vault, -1 Echoing Truth, +4 Spell Pierce, +2 Duress, +2 Deathmark
I sided out the combo kill, since Dream Halls and my graveyard would get hated out. In retrospect, maybe the Halls should have been kept on board to provide an alternative way to get Progenitus in play.
game 2: I have to mull down to 5 this game and cannot recover from it. By the time I could go for a Show and Tell, I'm already at 8, facing a Tarmogoyf and a Pridemage. On to game 3 it is.

Sideboarding: /
game 3: This game has me keeping a grip with some draw, Progenitus, 2 Duress, Force and lands. I manage to start some early disruption with Duress and keep his creatures of the board with Deathmark. He cannot get an offence rolling, but has massive hate against my graveyard/enchantments. We get to a situation where he has Sensei's Top on top of his library, Krosan Grip in hand and a Crypt and Relic in play. I go for Show and Tell into Progenitus and get a Force with a Mystical Tutor as protection for next turn (he could foil my plan by finding a Natural Order and getting his own Progenitus). 2 attacks later, it was game over.

1-0-0
2-1

Happily to have won this match, I'm ready to face my round 2 opponent.
R2: Kristof Cazaerck (RB Goblins)
Alright, Goblins, a good matchup, right? Well, we'll see...
game 1: We both mull down to 6, but I get a broken draw for my efforts. He won the die roll and elected to play. He just goes land, go. I masterfully copy that play on my first turn. He puts down a Port on his second turn and elects to play nothing to being able to tap my land in my upkeep. So without mana, I just go Ancient Tomb, Petal, Show and Tell into Dream Halls, Conflux and combo out from there.

Sideboarding: -2 Progenitus, - 1 Lim-Dl's Vault, +3 Hydroblast
I figured I could just go for the combo kill here, as Progenitus would probably not get me there fast enough.
game 2: I mull to 6 again and keep a decent hand, but nothing spectacular. It had 2 Hydroblast in it, so I figured I could stall a bit. My elected to play and spectacularly mulligans down to 4 cards! His first turn was just 'go'. He kept a 4 cards no-lander, figuring going to 3 would lose the game anyhow. I'm feeling positive and play a land to have Hydroblast up. He proceeds to rip a Badlands of the top and play a Duress. Great, Hydroblast feels soooo powerful then. He takes my Dream Halls away. I just do the land, go thing again. He proceeds to play another Duress! And takes my Conflux (I think). I'm left with some land and a Progenitus in hand, but rip a Show and Tell of the top like a pro. I go for it (as he mulled down to 4, 2 of which where Duress and only has 1 land yet). Show and Tell into Progenitus. He drops a Ringleader and gets a Warchief and a Chieftain from it. I make a sigh of relief, no Weirding and 2 mana shuffled away. I pass the turn and he draws his second land of the top, plays it and casts the Weirding he was holding in his opening 4. Damn. Ringleader hits me. I draw a land and have to say go. He draws a land and starts beating me down Goblin-style. I have 1 draw to little to be able to recover and still win it, so close. Turns out my opponents starting 4 where Duress x 2, Weirding and Ringleader. Nice one!

Sideboarding: /
game 3: I'm on the play and see a hand featuring T2 Progenitus with Force backup. I Decide to go for it. He has the Weirding, but Force takes care of that. 2 swings and it was all over. Few...

2-0-0
4-2

Pretty pleased to be sitting on 2-0, I hope for a good matchup to be able to double draw into top 8.
R3: Remi Dierickx (Zoo)
We both don't know what the opponent is playing, strangly enough. It turned out he was playing Zoo, so I was happy. This should be a good matchup.
game 1: I win the die roll and elect to play. I go turn 2 Progenitus and never look back.

Sideboarding: -3 Dream Halls, -3 Conflux, +3 Deathmark, +3 Hydroblast
game 2: I mull down to 6 again and keep a hand which is a little slow. He punishes me for it with a very speedy offence backup up by burn to finish me off before I could get big P into play. My mistake here, I should have mulled the hand away.

Sideboarding: /
game 3: I keep a starting 7 with 2 Progenitus, 2 Brainstorm and land. I figure that with me on the play, I can find a Show and Tell or other tutor/draw card with Brainstorm and get a T2/T3 Progenitus going. My first Brainstorm reveils land, land, counter. No help there. I fetch and play my second Brainstorm. This one gets me counter, land, counter... As of this point, I'm out of gas with only 2 x big P, counters and land in hand. I don't see anything to help me for the rest of the game and lose to Zoo beats.

2-1-0
5-4

Ok, this was the match that changed it all. I felt let down by my deck. 3-0 would have guaranteed top 8, now it's still a struggle. Still, one win would get me in there.
R4: my friend Robin Wouters (Iona Ichorid)
Just my luck, a 50-50 match against a friend... We talk about it a little and figure that 3-1-1 is good enough to secure top 8. We decide to draw here as we do not want to get either of us out of contention. The remaining matchups seem to be favorable in the last round (lots of Goblins, a White control, Zoo). Most decks we had good matches against.
We play it out for fun. I win game 1 the turn before he kills me, game 2 and 3 go to him.

2-1-1
(6-6)

Last round, here we go, a win nets me top 8.
I'm seated next to Robin (R4 opponent) and he gets a nice matchup against White Control. Then I see my opponent... Dang, I know what he's playing and it is really really bad news.
R5: Roy van Oever (Dark Depths)
Great. Counters, counters, counters and then some. Well, here we go.
game 1: He wins the die roll and goes for a T2 Confidant, I let it resolve and go for a T3 combo win with Force backup. This proves to be enough. One game in the bag, one more to go. I start feeling more confidant now.

Sideboarding: -1 Progenitus, -1 Lim-Dl's Vault, -2 Lotus Petal, -1 Conflux, -1 Mystical Tutor, +4 Spell Snare, +2 Duress
game 2: I have to mull down to 5 and keep a 50-50 hand. I cannot get the mana I need together and lose to Confidant + Hexmage beats. The lone lightpoint is where I manage to bounce his 20/20 flying dude with Wipe Away, negating his wall of countermagic in hand.

Sideboarding: /
game 3: I'm on the play and keep a good Show and Tell into Progenitus hand with Spell Pierce as backup. My deck craps out again and I cannot find a 4th mana to give me Spell Pierce protection on turn 3. I would have gotten the game there and then with Show and Tell into Progenitus with Pierce backup (he had a Pierce of his own then). I didn't dare to go for it with the backup countermagic and wait. And wait. And wait. about 4 turns later, I see my 4th mana source, but I'm already low on life from Hexmage beats and he has 3 Spell Pierce in hand at that time. I try but get countered and by the time I gather my mana for a Dream Halls with backup countermagic, I'm dead.

2-2-1
(7-8)

I end up finishing in 13th spot. My spot in the top 8 (well, the spot I thought to have had) goes to a single 3-2 finisher, all the rest are either 3-1-1 or 3-0-2. The top 8 is filled with Goblins and Zoo, with one NO Bant and my friend Wouter with Iona Ichorid as tough matches. I grumble a bit, but realize I just had a very bad matchup in R5. R3 was the crucial one.

I keep on believing in this deck, though, it is really really strong. My only concern stays with heavy hate matchups or heavy counter matchups. Hate matchups (like Bant) surely are winnable. The first game is very much doable and with good sideboarding, you should have a fighting chance to win G2 or G3. Heavy counter matchup are almost unwinnable though, especially when they have a quick clock. For this deck to become more mainstream, it needs a serious out against decks like Dark Depths and Merfolk.

Suggestions/Comments are always appreciated.
Bye for now!

Frid
01-25-2010, 09:49 AM
Bant in any version is one of the easiest matchups for the deck, and merfolks is slightly unfavorable but of course not a nightmare as I've read some posts ago. Propagandas are more or less useful against them, especially if they dont get a fourth land.
The hardest matchups for this deck are heavy disruptive decks with outs to progenitus, like pox or eva green.

Maveric78f
01-25-2010, 10:07 AM
Caenel. Your list is absolutely bad. I've always said that 17 lands is suicidal. But playing 17 lands with only 4 cantrips is even more suicide. I'm sure you've spent your day mulliganing hands with not enough mana.

Let's recap your deck. You play 4 petals, 4 FoW, 4 LDV, 3 tutors, 4 Show and Tell. The 1/3 of your deck nets you card disadvantage. In these conditions you can't win counterwars.

As Frid said, the worst MUs are mana denial and discard, especially for your build that spends its time giving CA to its opponent and that plays so few lands. The key point to win those MUs is Sensei Divining Top.

About the zoo MU, it's not that easy. A resolved Prog won't give you the game. A resolved DH will face Qasali and Krosan Grip both providing them 1 or 2 turns, just the time for finishing you off.

stacker
01-25-2010, 11:31 AM
Played a small-ish tourney (12+ people) this past weekend with the original stock list of 3 cruels et al. Went 3-1 (6-3) in the first 4 rounds, winning against elfball, rock, and ANT, and losing 0-2 to merfolk.

In semis, beat elfball 2-0 thanks to 2nd EOT lim-dul's into 3rd turn dream halls -> conflux both games.

Finals against the same merfolk who, obviously, did not want to split. Lost game 1 handedly against a resolved standstill. Game 2 did not board anything in as I wanted to keep 4 duress effects and still combo relatively quick. I eventually hard casted dream halls into 2 cruels and a progenitus for the final 10 damage.

Game 3 was pretty epic. I was at 14 life with one card in hand, a dream halls in play and a progenitus. I passed the turn. He had 2 vials (3 counters and 1 counter), a reejeray, silvergill, and mutavault. He literally untapped, put 4 counters on his vial, tapped it, then blindly slammed the top card onto the table. Of course it was the lone llawan that he sbed in. He then attacked with his 3 merfolks.

My one card in hand other than the progenitus that was just returned? Bogardan Hellkite. He couldn't find an answer and I won a sea for my efforts. After the game, he said that he should've boarded in his REBs.

caenel
01-25-2010, 12:13 PM
@Maveric78f
Alright, got the point of the card disadvantage and the shortage of mana (although I didn't need to mulligan down a lot because of mana, I did at times have difficulty finding that 3th or 4th mana quickly enough).

Any suggestions on how to fix my list? I'm up for anything, but keep in mind that I really like a comboish DH deck instead of a more controllish DH deck.

dearleader
01-25-2010, 04:51 PM
Run Sensei's Top. The card selection more than makes up for the speed of Ponder. It results in fewer turn 2 plays, but it gives so much consistency past turn 3. Aside from finding combo pieces, choosing when to draw land and when to draw DH fodder is pretty big too. Also, an EOT Vault with a top out usually gives you the game with counter backup.

Mystical Tutor is garbage. I've tested it before, and the 1 mana cost doesn't help except for being immune to spell snare. As mentioned multiple times before, card disadvantage is terrible for this deck. Lim Dul's Vault pulls it's weight because it can fix your draws for the next 2-4 turns. The thing is, early on the deck wants see a lot of cards through cantrips to sculpt your hand and evaluate your options. For example, if you cantrip and see redundant combo pieces early on, you can try to combo without counter backup.

I understand that the S&T Progenitus plan is pretty strong, but I still don't like lists that run 4 Progenitus and 17 land. It makes you too dependent on S&T, so that without S&T a fourth of the deck does nothing. Running 17 land makes it much harder to hardcast dream halls, which in my experience was one of the strengths of the deck (against control, you could draw out a counter with S&T, and then later hardcast Dream Halls).

caenel
01-25-2010, 05:11 PM
So basically:

- Switch 3 Mystical Tutor for Sensei's Tops
- Drop 1 Progenitus (and maybe an extra card) for extra land

I'll try this and post an updated decklist and test as soon as possible


Thanks

Fatestitcher
01-26-2010, 01:10 AM
After frustrating results with my LED decks (Ichorid and ANT) versus hate in the form of artifacts (Relic,Crypt,Chalice) I decided to bring a tweaked version of Tobiasc/Harbili U/b Dream Halls deck to a local 50-person tourney last night and went 3-3. Although I may not have done well I just wanted to share my experience with the deck and i hope others learn something from it.

minor differences from the list and some explanation:
-4 Ponder/+2 Sensei's Divining Top, +2 Impulse
-1 Progenitus/+1 Dark Ritual (i often find myself drawing 2 Progenitus when accel would have been better)
-2 Thoughtseize/+1 Duress, +1 Pact of Negation
-1 Underground Sea/+1 Swamp (against Thresh, Wasteland!)

Here's my full decklist and sideboard:
---17 Lands---
7x Fetchlands (4 Delta/3 Strands)
5x Island
1x Swamp
1x Underground Sea
3x Ancient Tomb
---Accel---
4x Show and Tell
3x Lotus Petal
1x Dark Ritual (Awesome! if Dreams Halls gets gripped or bounced you can Conflux into this one and win next turn!)
---Combo---
4x Dream Halls
4x Conflux
---Search---
4x Brainstorm
2x Sensei's Divining Top (tops act as permanent brainstorms!)
4x Lim-Dul's Vault
2x Impulse (and Impulse as LDV#5 and #6)
---KILL---
3x Progenitus
3x Cruel Ultimatum
1x Bogardan Hellkite
---Protection---
4x Force of Will
2x Thoughtseize
1x Duress (just testing this out, painless against control but thoughtseize proved to be better overall)
1x Pact of Negation (great help against Counter wars, i was expecting to face a lot of Blue decks but didn't!)

SB:
4x Leyline of the Void
3x Spell Pierce
2x Propaganda (I never drew any one of these versus Aggro!)
2x Slaughter Pact (I prefer the 0cc and win now answer)
1x Wipe Away (did not drew this either)
1x Hurkyl's Recall
1x Gaea's Blessing (against Painter but no one played it LOL!)
1x Time Stretch (very effective in a Conflux pile against decks that can pack GY removal and also if you happen to discard Ultimatum for whatever reason, i side out Pact for this card against non-Blue decks)


On to the report! Bear with me as this is my first time. I promise to be brief but accurate as possible.
Round 1 vs Enchantress 1-0
g1- I had my combo in hand. He wasn't able to do much but play Enchant Lands. I proceeded to win with Ancient Tombs, Show and Tell, Dream Halls > Conflux, Cruel Ultimatum win!
g2 - On his 2nd turn he tried to play Seal of Primordium, I Force. I drew the combo 2nd turn after breaking a fetchland on my first turn. I played Show and Tell via Tombs, he showed Runed Halo naming Cruel Ultimatum. I showed Dream Halls. I then Conflux into Progenitus + Time Stretch and win. Good thing i sided Time Stretch in.

Round 2 vs Dragon Stompy 1-1
g1 - I'm on the play with a weak hand of Show and Tell, Progenitus, Duress. I played Underground Sea and duressed seeing Seething Song, Arc-Slogger, Magus of the Moon, 2x SSG! I figured i'm fucked up next turn since the other land in my hand was a fetchland and I didn't have Force. Unless i draw an Island, i can Show and Tell Progenitus. He played the Magus followed by Jitte and beaters, when I finally managed to drop Progenitus it was late by a single turn.
g2 - I got mana screwed after keeping a hand with Tomb and Petal. When i played SnT though he managed to drop his singleton Akroma, Angel of Fury. Progenitus alone is not enough to race his beaters. If I had mulled to an opening hand of Dream Halls or Conflux it could have turned out differently. Again a bad decision on my part.

Round 3 vs Zoo 1-2
g1 - I take Nacatl beatings but was able to drop Dream Halls and win through Conflux.
g2 - Poor hand did not catch up with an early Lynx and fethcland shenanigans. I lost during his 5th turn after doing enough damage to myself with Lim-Dul’s Vault.
g3 - I was able to Sn’T Progenitus early but he also put Gaddock Teeg into play. A Lightning Helix from him meant Progenitus must extend another turn. I have FoW and Slaughter Pact in my hand but have only an Island and Tomb in play, I couldn’t Pact Teeg even if I wanted to. He played Sylvan Library and grabbed enough burn, a pair of Bolts and Fireblast to my face! Afterwards, he showed me that he also sided in 4x Cannonists.

At this point I knew I will not cut it into Top 8 but still decided to give the deck its deserved tourney runs.
Round 4 vs Jacob (Goblins) 1-3
g1 - I knew what he was playing but still kept a slow hand. I kept a hand with Underground Sea and SDT. Wasteland on Underground Sea meant I can never dig for another land again. Siege-Gang Commander with hasty critters gets there turn 4. Keeping a non-aggressive hand against an agressive deck will bite you hard in the face.
g2 - He sided in 4 Thorn of Amethyst and was able to drop a pair on the board. I managed to play 4 lands and a Petal. SnT + Progenitus almost got there but a hasty Piledriver et al. went sideways on me for lethal 16 damage when I was at 15. I never dew my Propagandas.

Round 5 vs Scapeshift 2-3
g1 - I started with a good hand and the deck did what it’s supposed to do.
g2 - SnT turn 3 via Dark Ritual into Dream Halls + Conflux gets there real quick. I sided in Time Stretch for Pact of Negation to dodge GY hate.

Round 6 vs Ichorid 3-3
I know he was having a bad night as he always lands in the T8. He is one of the most successful Ichorid players I know.
g1 - I punted as I Forced a Deep Analysis bait. Iona is already sitting in the yard, but I failed to see the Dread Return also in the yard nor realize that he has already 3 creatures on board. DR + Iona on blue gets there.
g2 - I managed to pull out a double Leyline but considering he’s a good player as he is, he proceeded to harcast Narcomoeba and Thug for beats. My life withered down as I struggle to find my combo pieces. My life was at 6 when I managed to Sn’T Dream Halls (I also have Progenitus and Hellkite in hand), he then dropped Iona on blue in response. The only way I can still pull this off is by flashing Hellkite and burn Iona’s face for 5. And just as i prayed for, Iona went sideways on me and Hellkite pitching Ultimatum was able to kill it post combat. I then Conflux into Progenitus + Time Stretch FTW.
g3 - He’s on the play but I open with a Leyline. This was also the point where he mulled to 4. I was able to Sn’T Dream Halls and pitch into Conflux when he Chained Dream Halls in response. I Conflux into Conflux. Good thing I have a fifth land in my hand to hardcast Dream Halls and win!

Some thoughts on the list above.. my next list would probably run 1 less Show and Tell as this card backfired in many matches. I will opt for a 2:3 Ritual:SnT ratio. I will definitely consider 4x Propaganda in the sb until I figure out a better way to deal with aggro. I am now also considering Pandemonium in place of Time Stretch.

jazzykat
01-26-2010, 04:10 AM
Just a comment about SnT. If you drop progenitus then you should probably win. If your opponents happen to have Iona or Akroma in their hand that is probably mostly bad luck.

Maveric78f
01-26-2010, 04:20 AM
So basically:

- Switch 3 Mystical Tutor for Sensei's Tops
- Drop 1 Progenitus (and maybe an extra card) for extra land

I'll try this and post an updated decklist and test as soon as possible


Thanks

Top requires more lands. 20. I proposed a Ur list some days ago. If you absolutely want to keep a Ub version, I think it's quite easy to switch slots. But I have to say that the turn 4/5 win deck is probably better Ur as it enables to play pyroclasm effects against tribal decks.

dearleader
01-26-2010, 07:28 AM
@F'er
In round 1 you could still win without time stretch. Since you presumably won the game on the board with Progenitus, you could also chain Confluxes to grab all your discard and counter spells.

Round 2 was really bad luck. If you see a hand that can potentially win, you should keep it. The deck is terrible with mulligans, since between the acceleration, LDV, Force, and Dream Halls, you need to have a lot of colored cards in hand to win. Mulliganing on average sets you back a full turn because you need to draw cards. Also, S&T Prog is pretty safe against all the non-aggro decks.

Round 4 looked pretty tough. Sometimes the deck doesn't get there. As an aside, I still think bounce like Chain of Vapor or any cheap removal spell is better than Propaganda against aggro. I've found tempo to be huge against aggro. Propaganda can buy you a turn or so by only allowing 1-2 creatures to attack, but it comes at the cost of a turn 2 or 3, meaning that unless you know what your going to draw (from a vault), you're missing out on a turn's worth of cantripping. Chain of Vapor on the other hand is pretty versatile. At one mana, it answers the tempo of an aggressive 1 drop perfectly - it stops Nacatl and Lackey from connecting and forces them to alter their turn 2 plans - and past turn 1 you can cantrip and bounce a creature at the same turn. It also provides additional answers to hate.

S&T is way better than Ritual. 4x S&T is a must. For one, you need UUB to ritual out a Dream Halls, and in a build with Ancient Tombs and only 17 land, you sometimes end up with the wrong mana. If you go with Rituals, I'd suggest going with a slightly slower build without Ancient Tombs and Lotus Petals, and with more land. The times when S&T backfired are pretty unlucky. If i know i'm up against some sort of aggro, I try not to S&T Progenitus - depending on the gamestate. The thing with S&T is that the S&T Prog plan is great against control. Most aggro-control decks don't have any outs to a 10/10, and you can win a lot of games through that. It then forces your opponent to counter your S&T at all times to avoid Progenitus. Then, you simply have way more threats than they have counters - They have to counter your 4 S&T AND either your 4 Dream Halls or the 5-6 cards you can cast off dream halls. With your own discard and Forces, combined with the nice cantripping from Top and Lim Dul's Vault, you'll generally have more threats than they have counters (unless their playing Counter Top). A lot of times against control, I'll go for an unprotected S&T, simply to either draw out a counter or right out win the game.

Mr.T
01-26-2010, 07:05 PM
I'm Confused as to why everyone runs the 3-1 split of cruel and hellkite. its useless why not run 4 cruel instead. also i run 3-4 mulldrifter's for extra search that can combo with the cruel while comboing or just evoke for some early cards. My old list is in the original thread before it was moved here. Anyway here is my current list.


//1cc
4 Brainstorm
4 Ponder
4 Thoughtseize
//2cc
4 Mana Leak
//3cc
4 Show and Tell
//5cc
3 Mulldrifter
4 Dream halls
4 Force of Will
//7cc
4 Cruel Ultimatum
//8cc
2 Conflux
//10cc
2 Progenitus
//Lands
7 Fetch's
4 Ancient Tomb
3 Underground Sea
7 Island

Brizzle
01-26-2010, 07:11 PM
I'm Confused as to why everyone runs the 3-1 split of cruel and hellkite. its useless why not run 4 cruel instead.
It's an alternate threat. It can also be Show and Tell'd in to clear a hate-bear or Warrens tokens or something like that.

Frid
01-26-2010, 07:31 PM
I'm Confused as to why everyone runs the 3-1 split of cruel and hellkite. its useless why not run 4 cruel instead.

Agreed with this. Every time you resolve a halls and you have bogardan in hand it simply sucks, and if you're comboing already with ultimatums or conflux it's just overkill. If at least it were blue maybe, but it isn't. And putting it into play with a S&T just gives an useful target for your opp stp's or path to exile. And ultimatums don't do damage, they cause loss of life, which matters sometimes against random things like glacial chasm for example, as I posted some pages ago.
For me, 4 cruel are the way to go, and S&T into progenitus as the alternate way. If you opponent hates one of those ways, the other won't be affected by the same hate. Simply and effective. That's what I like most from this deck.

Maveric78f
01-27-2010, 03:18 AM
Agreed with this. Every time you resolve a halls and you have bogardan in hand it simply sucks, and if you're comboing already with ultimatums or conflux it's just overkill. If at least it were blue maybe, but it isn't. And putting it into play with a S&T just gives an useful target for your opp stp's or path to exile. And ultimatums don't do damage, they cause loss of life, which matters sometimes against random things like glacial chasm for example, as I posted some pages ago.
For me, 4 cruel are the way to go, and S&T into progenitus as the alternate way. If you opponent hates one of those ways, the other won't be affected by the same hate. Simply and effective. That's what I like most from this deck.
Putting Hellkite into play earns at minimum 2 or 3 turns against aggro decks. It's also GG against some decks, such as Tempo Thresh. Or very useful against some others such as ANT. SnTing Hellkite is rarely a bad move.

caenel
01-27-2010, 05:33 AM
Another small benefit of having the Hellkite in there is that you can pitch Hellkite to play your Cruels, each time returning the Hellkite from the grave with the just played Cruel. This gives you more card advantage and stability (although you would hardly ever fizzle finding a blue card when drawing 3 from Cruel, but land-land-land on top has happened before).

Frid
01-27-2010, 08:52 AM
But that is a clear example of pure overkill. The huge point against hellkite is that when you resolve dream halls and just have an ultimatum in hand to go off you will win from that 95% of the time. On the other way, if that ultimatum is a hellkite you can't do anything, first of all because you directly can't play it as it is red, and second because if you could play it an ultimatum effect would be clearly superior. Because this was a common scenario in my testing I dropped the hellkite for the fourth ultimatum. Then there are obviously more marginal pros and cons, but for me this was the key one, and because it is a clear point against I don't run it.

Maveric78f
01-27-2010, 09:25 AM
Between SnT Hellkite and SnT CU, I think that there is a big difference of effect also. In the Ur version, there is no way you can demonstrate that CU > Hellkite. BW tutors Conflux and SnT. First case, you have DH, then you tutor for Conflux. Second case, you have Hellkite, then you tutor for SnT. In both cases, CU does nothing. And also in the Ur version, you play 14 red cards, which mean you'll probably be able to play Hellkite off DH (and as an instant please). This instant type provides it another (side-effect) advantage: if you SnT DH in play and your opponent SnT ORing, Harmonic Sliver, and so on you prefer to have an instant-speed spell.

Fatestitcher
01-27-2010, 09:28 AM
@Frid
During my testing I never fizzled after dropping Dream Halls. I always manage to find Conflux or a single Ultimatum nets me one, thereby the reasonable 3:1 split. Probably one factor for this is that I run permanent search engines (SDTs), Impulses which can dig deeper than Ponders aside from the LDVs.
What I wanna find out is that if you do have any maindeck solution for random hate or aggro.

Fatestitcher
01-27-2010, 09:55 AM
@Maveric
Burning Wish is a good card and this deck runs at least 8 sorcery spells. The core of the deck however is Dream Halls and it fails to find just that. Right now, i believe LDVs > BW because LDVs will find you any card.
As a long time combo player, I personally dislike Burning Wish in any list except AggroLoam (and Belcher, Enduring Ideal:smile:) and I don't play it in my AdNT. Putting Burning Wish in will be similar to playing storm Bryant Cook TES-style which is not my taste.:tongue:

odabella
01-27-2010, 10:05 AM
But that is a clear example of pure overkill. The huge point against hellkite is that when you resolve dream halls and just have an ultimatum in hand to go off you will win from that 95% of the time. On the other way, if that ultimatum is a hellkite you can't do anything, first of all because you directly can't play it as it is red, and second because if you could play it an ultimatum effect would be clearly superior. Because this was a common scenario in my testing I dropped the hellkite for the fourth ultimatum. Then there are obviously more marginal pros and cons, but for me this was the key one, and because it is a clear point against I don't run it.

I am playing Ub.

In my testgames I lost one game against enchantress with Hellkite because of Cop:Red (Ultimatum = Loss of Life).
After reading marveric78f's posts I think the nucklavee-CU-Bounce Package is supposed to be the best killing package.

Why play 4xCU instead? To have Conflux 5-8. Other reasons?

Maveric78f
01-27-2010, 10:14 AM
@Maveric
Burning Wish is a good card and this deck runs at least 8 sorcery spells. The core of the deck however is Dream Halls and it fails to find just that. Right now, i believe LDVs > BW because LDVs will find you any card.
As a looong time combo player, I personally dislike Burning Wish in any list except AggroLoam (and Belcher, Enduring Ideal:smile:) and I don't play it in my AdNT. Putting Burning Wish in is similar to playing storm Bryant Cooks' TES-style which is not my taste.:tongue:

It's a bit simplistic. I've played Ub DH for a long time (although I did not play Prog at this time and I admit it was probably an error) and I don't regret playing red now. Red brings a lot to the deck:
- BW vs LDV: no card disadvantage, no life loss, can play a control role (Firespout, Draw spell), can get rid of locks (Anarchy, bounce, anti-artifact), only 1 coloured mana, finds all the non permanent combo elements.
- Fire/Ice vs Petal: Ice is a Time Walk, such as petal (acceleration), but Ice is not card disadvantage and sometimes you're happy to burn some stuff.
- Hellkite*2+Sphinx vs CU*4: Hellkite can be hardcasted. Hellkite has flash. CU guarantees the win under DH. The fact that the Ur version plays virtually 7 SnT makes the creature kill more reliable.
- Spell Pierce vs discard: Spell Pierce is complementary with Fire/ice in this deck. It's awesome.
- REB in SB.

That's it. We should also compare on the MUs. The only things I'm 100% sure, it's that Ur is better against discard (no card disadvantage, spell pierce) and against gob (SnT Hellkite, more control).

dearleader
01-28-2010, 06:34 AM
I think what's missing from the analysis is that LDV can find you everything you need if you're up against a slower control deck, or even a combo deck that's trying to play around your FoW. It gives you the card quality of a few turns worth of Top-spinning. You can often find piles that contain 2 disruption and 1 combo piece, redundant combo pieces and disruption, or disruption/combo piece and a fetch. The fact that it's an instant is pretty significant too; your opponent either counters it on their EOT which potentially opens them up to your combo, or lets you pick your next 2-3 draws. Finally, unless you're running a version that relies more on S&T creatures, LDV being able to fetch permanents is somewhat important too.
Discard lets you see what you're up against, and not using mana on the turn you're comboing (especially if you need to hardcast DH) is somewhat important. I think it's a tossup though.

Regarding Hellkite VS CU: cards that can be cast off S&T are less dead than cards that can be cast off DH. I don't like Hellkite as a maindeck S&T target, since it turns on removal, but at least it's more flexible than CU. Hellkite requires S&T. CU requires S&T/acceleration + DH. I've been playing 6-7 spells for DH and I've never lacked for one. If you're looking for outs to decks like enchantress, consider running a singleton bounce spell or Cunning Wish (with a wishboard of bounce, Ravenous Trap, and Pact of Negation) instead of running the 4th Cruel. This only fails if they manage to resolve 2 hosers against you through your countermagic and discard before you combo off, and only if you don't have more bounce to board in for games 2/3.

It's possible to bring in other S&T creatures in certain MU's. Nothing jumps out right now. Maybe the new Wurm against aggro and aggro-control. It seems better than Progenitus in those MU's postboard because you're less likely to get outraced with the Wurm (they only get in 1 turn to attack with their creatures, as opposed to 2 turns when you try to kill them with Prog). I'm not sure if the effect is worth the SB slots, but it gives you more/better S&T targets in games 2/3.

I want to ask everyone; how do you play this deck against control in general? I know this is a pretty vague question (the Merfolk MU is wildly different from the CT MU) but I just want to know how people play against counters. I admit I haven't played a lot with the german build. I play a somewhat different list, with 20 lands and only 2 progenitus, so I'm often not afraid of casting S&T unprotected, depending on what I have in my hand. The reason is that your opponent risks seeing progenitus, and we could have multiple CU/Conflux in hand if we get DH in play. In the matches I've played, my opponents almost always countered S&T, regardless of how well they knew the deck. In my build though, I'm usually not upset if my opponent counters S&T, because it means 1 fewer counter I have to worry about when I play DH. This is where I want to ask people how they play, particularly if they only cast S&T with protection. I think this might be partly due to how the decks are built; the german build has 5 creatures that are mostly dead without S&T and it runs 4 lotus petal + 17 lands (with ~6 basics), while I run 2 progenitus and 20 land (only 1 dual and 7 fetches) with 3-4 Dark Rituals for mana. It seems that the former places more emphasis on S&T, in terms of both depending on S&T to make a game-winning play, and the strength of the S&T plan. It may make sense to protect the S&T in this build, because it's very likely to win off an early progenitus, and the deck might not reach the mana to hardcast DH, especially through wasteland. On the other hand, I've never really had a problem hardcasting DH against Thresh. I'm not using this point to claim that my list is superior. Just pointing out a difference in deck construction that could lead to this difference in play.

Deck construction aside, I want to know if this is how other people play against blue decks. Is casting S&T without protection too loose? Is it the best strategy against control, where you want to draw out their counters with S&T - a non-essential combo piece? I think there's been a lot of discussion about marginal issues in deckbuilding (which is admittedly important since there is still no consensus list), but not about how the game plays out against various MU's. I want to throw this question out there to see if this is the consensus on how people play.

Maveric78f
01-28-2010, 06:57 AM
As you said, it depends a lot of your hand, the opponent's board and the opponent's hand size. But in general, I can say this with my Ur version. Important to know is that my MD protection is 4 FoW + 4 Spell Pierce + 4 F/I (not really protection, but it means I'm not afraid of Gaddock or shit like this) + 4 REBs in SB.

I play virtually 7 SnT. I have often have several virtual copies in hand (+4 DH). So I often play it to test the opponen'ts response. However, I try dodge daze if I'm not forced to play into it. When my opponent has no clock and I have top in play and not them, I can also spend some time to build card quality, to cycle my Fire/Ice (useless in this MU), etc...

With 12 cheap counterspells post SB against heavy control decks like Standstill (= no clock), it's almost impossible to lose. Just go to 6/7 manas available and try to play DH without SnT. The problem with SnT is ORing and Humility. If you're in a MU where you don't fear either one, then you can continue SnTing.

Against Merfolks, it's completely different though. They are aggressive and SnT is your best weapon. Against Merfolk my SB plan is +4 REB of course -1 Sphinx, -1/2 DH, -0/1 F/I, -0/1 FoW. Red helps a lot against Merfolk with F/I, REB and Hellkites (BW on Firespout is not completely aweful neither).

Frid
01-28-2010, 07:05 AM
The less clock they have (and thus the more controllish role they play) the better matchup for you. Think that 90% of the control decks in legacy just run 4 force of will as hard counters, as you do, and you run 4 thoughtseize and just have to resolve a show and tell or a dream halls. The best of all this is that you don't care about counterbalance (unless they get a cmc3 and cmc5 on top obv). My gameplans against control are two, depending on my hand. If I have 2 or 3 dream halls and/or S&T, I cast one after the other consecutively, and one has to resolve most of the time. If I only have a dream halls, I wait until I resolve a thoughtseize, or if they have countertop online until I get a fow. And the wait usually isn't that longer playing LDV and cantrips. The problem comes when they go: Turn 1 top, turn 2 balance, turn 3 goyf. But in this scenario would lose everyone.
I really find control decks very easy to beat with this deck, especially landstill, followed by countertop. Control role with no clock, this means loads of time to sculpt your hand, is exactly what the deck needs to win.

Fatestitcher
01-28-2010, 09:52 AM
Against control there's time to cantrip into at least 2 disruption spells. I will go off if I have FoW and Pact of Negation in hand. I'd also replace Spell Pierce with Dispel in the sb.

Dispel :u:
Instant Common

Counter target instant spell.

stacker
01-31-2010, 11:55 PM
what do people think about adding 1 cunning wish mainboard and 1 research/development sideboard?

caenel
02-01-2010, 04:23 AM
Just a quick add to the thread:

I've been testing Ancestral Memories as a 2-off in my Dream Halls list lately and I must say... it really is crap... (as all of you would have already expected, but I'm a little hard-headed). You never ever hardcast the thing, but that was to be expected. But when I use it for what I intended it: Searching for a Conflux after casting a Dream Halls it fizzled almost 50% of the times for me. Once it even found me 6 land and another Halls...
When playing something that I'd only cast of Dream Halls (as Conflux nr 5-6) I'd really want it to get me what I want at a 100% ratio. This just didn't work.

Secondary, I've been tinkering with my kill conditions. What do you guys think about the False Cure/Beacon of Immortality kill? I'm running it at the moment and loving it. They are in a different color, so Conflux gets them both at once. The kill is graveyard independent (as opposed to the Nucklavee/Cruel kill I was running). It kills the opponent, no matter what the life total is. It only requires 2 slots, so it is a very compact kill. I'm running this kill and a Time Stretch as backup kill. So my main and backup kill only requires 3 slots (since I'm taking 4 Progenitus for granted here) and are both not graveyard dependant. I have the ability to maindeck 1 Wipe Away this way to take care of some troublesome permanents that might be in play.

On a short note, I'd like to direct everyone's attention to another 2 very nice finishes in Spain with basic UB Dream Halls builds: 2nd and 4th in a 72 ppl GPT for Madrid.
Here is the deckcheck link:
http://www.deckcheck.net/event.php?event=GPT+Madrid+2010+-+Madrid+%2F+Spain

Maveric78f
02-01-2010, 07:45 AM
The problem about your kill Caenel is that you lose to Trickbind. So it needs another kill. Well Prog might be enough to take care of this. The good thing about CU, is that it is good in itself. Meaning that you'll be happy to play DH without Conflux in hand but CU. Even if you can't combo right after you're still in good position.

I myself play the Sphinx+2*Hellkite which also (almost) ensures you to win during the turn whatever is the opponent's life total. I prefer this because they also aren't so bad with DH (even if they are less gamebreaking than CU), because I play 4*Burning Wish to tutor Conflux as well and because I play 4*Burning Wish to tutor SnT. These are the only reasons.

Note that the 2 nice finishes have exactly the same decks. I'm going to repeat myself but I just can't understand their land count.

caenel
02-01-2010, 10:29 AM
@Maveric78f
Well, yes, it loses to Trickbind (or Stifle) for that matter, but ask yourself: Who plays Trickbind? Almost no-one. Stifle, yes, but we can counter that.

More on that: the opponent can just as easily Trickbind (or Stifle) the come into play ability on Sphinx or Hellkite, if I'm not mistaken, thus rendering your kill as unreliable as mine against the same cards (you still have a 5/5 flying beater in play, I give you that).

Also on a side note I have to say I'm still playing the UB version, so I always play the first Conflux for protection (Force of Will/Thoughtseize/Duress), Beacon, Conflux and Progenitus. Then I play my Thoughtseize/Duress, get more with the next Conflux if needed and finally Conflux for my kill conditions. So unless they hold a grip with 4 or more uncounterable (like Trickbind/Krosan Grip) answers, I can reliably strip their hand of answers before going for the throat (and yes, if all else fails, Progenitus + Time Stretch or plain old Progenitus beats are pretty reliable backup options).

Maveric78f
02-01-2010, 10:44 AM
1 thing really nice about your combo is that it's instant speed.

I also like the suggestion of stacker. Except that I would just play 1*research/development MD as kill (+progenistus in case it gets discarded).

dearleader
02-01-2010, 06:41 PM
False Cure seems worse than Pandemonium. 1 Pandemonium with 2 progenitus deals around 60 damage (assuming you have 4 conflux), and it only requires 1 dead card, which is not only important for consistency, but it also reduces the chance of having your kill condition discarded. I like that false cure avoids randomness like Glacial Chasm or CoP red, though.
Also, compare running False Cure/Beacon to running 2 CU: After you combo with Conflux you can bounce any annoying permanent, make them discard it along with the rest of their hand, gain 10 life, make them sac 2 creatures, grab a handful of counters, and pass the turn with a 10/10 on the board. It's pretty much a guaranteed kill. The only thing that could stop it is if Lands topdecks a Glacial Chasm and is at a high enough life to pay the upkeep until we run out of counters for their loam, or if some deck has more than Moat/Humility/Elephant Grass on the board. Most of the time, it's just as effective as the guaranteed kill, except you run 2 fewer dead cards and 2 more combo pieces.

The False Cure kill, for all practical purposes, isn't instant speed. It's highly unlikely that you'll be able to kill without first resolving Conflux. I can't really think of a situation where the instant speed of False Cure / Beacon would be relevant.

Research/Development seems interesting. Again, if it's only there for the kill, I'm not sure if Pandemonium wouldn't just be better, since you wouldn't need to use up sideboard space for kill conditions.

In general, I don't like cards that are only good after resolving Conflux. If we resolve Conflux in a game, 99% of the time it won't matter what kill condition we use. We're tutoring up a 12 cards (20 - 4 conflux - 4 pitch); that's enough to win by exclusively beating with progenitus for 2 turns, unless you're going to get raced.

GtF
02-04-2010, 02:09 AM
So is it worth replacing spell pierce with dispel in the SB of this deck?

p1mpjuice
02-07-2010, 07:22 AM
The False Cure kill, for all practical purposes, isn't instant speed. It's highly unlikely that you'll be able to kill without first resolving Conflux. I can't really think of a situation where the instant speed of False Cure / Beacon would be relevant.

This makes me sad =(.

I'm surprised people are comparing LDV to burning wish. LDV is card disadvantage, but it locks you into at least 3 quality draws. Your package of 5 finds you everything you need, and if your only looking for one card, top to draw it and you're golden.
The card disadvantage has hurt, and I've lost a few games because of lack of cards to pitch, but the deck stacking ability is too good to pass up (and let's be honest; if LDV also cantripped it would be ridiculously broken).

Playing black also gives you access to rituals and discard, which really shouldn't be discounted very quickly.

Maveric78f
02-07-2010, 07:25 AM
What's good about BW card "equiality" is that you can play it through DH, and not play it in prevision of playing DH. LDV enables it only with top in play, which is not so good. And saying you find 3 good draws with LDV is a bit utopic. Generally, you just tutor for 1 card, 2 cards if you're lucky.

raudo
02-08-2010, 09:52 AM
Lim-Dul's vault reminds me from the good old days I played turbo-stasis. :) So I ordered a set of thoughtseizes and when they come I will build this deck up. I must browse my old cards from stasis and other combo decks to find some fresh ideas..

caenel
02-22-2010, 08:01 AM
Kind of quiet in the Dream Halls section for a while (has everyone given up on this deck?).
Anyhow, I played Dream Halls yesterday at a tournament in Mol (Belgium). The results, build and thoughts are found in the tournament reports section.

http://www.mtgthesource.com/forums/showthread.php?16603-Dreaming-to-top-8

parad0x
02-23-2010, 04:59 PM
I have recently picked up the Dream Halls combo deck, and I really like your combo solution. It just seems a bit clunky to play cruels for then win when you can just win instantly. It also opens up the SB to gravehate.

Do you feel that Sensei's divining top could fill the place of Ponder?

Fatestitcher
02-23-2010, 07:55 PM
It definitely can, but not as 4-of. You don't want to dilute blue in the deck as blue cards are crucial to pitch for FoW, Conflux, or Cruel Ultimatum, Progenitus. I've tested a pair of tops main and they are great turn 1 plays.

It's also worth discussing if Scroll Rack sits better in its place as it can dig deeper and it can also hide combo pieces from discard.

Good luck on your new pet deck :tongue:.

4zureSky
02-24-2010, 12:39 AM
I recently started playing with this deck and its awesome against a lot decks except decks with counters :( Most of the time I just go for SnT then progenitus and it wins me the game haha. For even more power I sided time stretch for faster kill if I will go with dream halls in 2nd game too. Scroll Rack seems pretty good in this deck but what would you remove for it? The list is tight as it is :(

Maveric78f
02-24-2010, 02:14 AM
Yesterday, I playtested my Ur version (see page 4 of the thread). 8-8 preboard mostly thanks to the BW => anarchy to deal with Iona on blue. If Iona is set on Red, I can still SnT and Ice Iona the time I win. Postboard I led 3-1, but at this point I think the MU is really great for DH because I can enter 4 Reb and 3 relics. The game gets very controlish (the reanimator version played by my opponent is U-heavy with 7 hard counters and 4 daze). His plan is not that much to reanimate but let me resolve DH and counter the kills. Hellkite shines a lot in this MU because I can hardcast it.

I think that reanimator is definitely one of those MUs where R splash shines in comparison with B splash. I could name a lot of other decks but I don't have figures to prove it.

caenel
02-24-2010, 04:49 AM
I have recently picked up the Dream Halls combo deck, and I really like your combo solution. It just seems a bit clunky to play cruels for then win when you can just win instantly. It also opens up the SB to gravehate.

Do you feel that Sensei's divining top could fill the place of Ponder?

I've been testing various cards in the Ponder spot for a while now. I tried Sensei's Top. I tried Mystical Tutor. But ultimately, came back to Ponder because of the shuffle effect it grants. Top was nice and all, but I frequently found myself staring at a not so good top 3 cards without any shuffle effects to get them away. You do not want to just go draw-go for 3 turns with this deck. Maybe a combination of Ponder and Top might work, something like 4 Brainstorm, 3 Ponder, 3 Lim-Dl's Vault, 2 Top as a search package. I'm going to look into that one. For now though, I'm kind of fond of Ponder. It got me out of more sticky situations already than Mystical (too slow and cannot get Progenitus/Dream Halls) or Top (no shuffle effects when the top 3 cards where not what I needed) did.
Situations where Top might shine is the counter matchups to sculpt out that perfect hand with double or triple protection, but in general, I found it too clunky against fast aggro decks (Goblins/Dredge).


It's also worth discussing if Scroll Rack sits better in its place as it can dig deeper and it can also hide combo pieces from discard.

I'm afraid I cannot see Scroll Rack making a big impact here. It just cost too much mana to be helpfull. You cast this on turn 2 most of the times, with activations coming on turn 3. This is where I'd just like to go for the kill or big-P. Also, as 4zureSky said, where would you put it? The list is pretty tight already. Maybe Scroll Rack could be tested instead of Top in my previously suggested search setup. This would be (with Scroll Rack): 4 Brainstorm, 3 Ponder, 3 Lim-Dl's Vault, 2 Scroll Rack. Might have to give that one a spin too.


I think that reanimator is definitely one of those MUs where R splash shines in comparison with B splash. I could name a lot of other decks but I don't have figures to prove it.

You could be right about the Reanimator matchup. For my build, this matchup is much harder, especially pre-board. Post-board though, I get to side in 3 Deathmark, which are usually enough to keep Iona of the table for 1 turn (which is all I normally need). The problem in the Reanimator matchup is that they can race your Progenitus kill with Sphinx of the Steel Wind (if they have that in hand when you Show and Tell).
Still, I feel black being the better choice. You gain invaluable streamlining functionality (Lim-Dl's Vault) and usefull hand desruption (Thoughtseize) together with (from my point of view) better boarding choices (Deathmark, Duress, Leyline of the Void). Only time (and testing) will tell which version is better, I guess.

Maveric78f
02-24-2010, 05:16 AM
Still, I feel black being the better choice. You gain invaluable streamlining functionality (Lim-Dl's Vault) and usefull hand desruption (Thoughtseize) together with (from my point of view) better boarding choices (Deathmark, Duress, Leyline of the Void). Only time (and testing) will tell which version is better, I guess.
Actually I'm the only one who has tested both versions and I don't see what are the pros for the black splash. How is Deathmark relevant? I play 4 Fire/Ice MD which are removal against swarm and Time Walk against 1 fatty. How is duress/thoughtseize better than 4*Spell Pierce MD (complementary with Fire/Ice) and 4*REB in SB. 4*BW provides universal response to almost everything with Bounce against annoying permanents, Anarchy against Iona@U and Enchantress, Firespout against swarms. Leyline is not better than relic of progenitus, since relic (*3) makes you draw and can be played also as a Time Walk against Tarmogoyf. If I sum it up:
- Thoughtseize can't be compared with Spell Pierce but Pierce's weaknesses against seize are balanced by the fact it's completely complementary with Fire/Ice and that the Ur version can be played almost always at instant speed (save for burnning wish, but it is finally hardcasted only 33% of the time)
- Deathmark SB < Fire/Ice MD
- Duress < REB (except maybe against ANT)
- Leyline < Relic (well you could switch yourself)
- LDV is too different to be compared to Burning Wish (only 1 coloured mana, no card disadvantage, no life loss, can search for cards that are only 1-of and do not pollute the MD against the ability to fetch lands, Progenitus and Dream Halls and the instant speed).

I can see for only justification to play Ub the fact that it's the only version that has been played in tournament and therefore the only one that has top8ed. Then people has started to copycat it.

caenel
02-24-2010, 06:04 AM
Actually I'm the only one who has tested both versions and I don't see what are the pros for the black splash. How is Deathmark relevant? I play 4 Fire/Ice MD which are removal against swarm and Time Walk against 1 fatty. How is duress/thoughtseize better than 4*Spell Pierce MD (complementary with Fire/Ice) and 4*REB in SB. 4*BW provides universal response to almost everything with Bounce against annoying permanents, Anarchy against Iona@U and Enchantress, Firespout against swarms. Leyline is not better than relic of progenitus, since relic (*3) makes you draw and can be played also as a Time Walk against Tarmogoyf. If I sum it up:
- Thoughtseize can't be compared with Spell Pierce but Pierce's weaknesses against seize are balanced by the fact it's completely complementary with Fire/Ice and that the Ur version can be played almost always at instant speed (save for burnning wish, but it is finally hardcasted only 33% of the time)
- Deathmark SB < Fire/Ice MD
- Duress < REB (except maybe against ANT)
- Leyline < Relic (well you could switch yourself)
- LDV is too different to be compared to Burning Wish (only 1 coloured mana, no card disadvantage, no life loss, can search for cards that are only 1-of and do not pollute the MD against the ability to fetch lands, Progenitus and Dream Halls and the instant speed).

I can see for only justification to play Ub the fact that it's the only version that has been played in tournament and therefore the only one that has top8ed. Then people has started to copycat it.

Well, I personally prefer Duress vs REB, just because of the fact that you could Duress one turn in advance to going off, thus knowing the opponents hand (or most of it) and knowing what you are up against (countermagic that is). It allows you to better calculate your plays. For REB, you need that extra red mana on the turn you are going to combo, often delaying that turn to get that extra mana source on the board. I often find myself casting Thoughtseize/Duress on turn 2 (seeing little or no counters) and combo out on turn 3. And as you mentioned, Duress and Thoughtseize alone make my matchup against Tendrils decks that much better.

About the Leyline/Relic issue, I am undecided myself. I found Ichorid to be a hard matchup (because of the speed + disruption (Cabal Therapy/Unmask) they could use). Leyline comes down turn 0 and Ichorid has to find an answer for it if they want to go off, giving you the needed time to assemble all your pieces and combo/beat them out. Relic needs a mana to be cast, and a turn. If Ichorid can start, you could very well be screwed. Yes, Relic cantrips and keeps Goyf very small, but I do not see myself sideboarding in Relics in Goyf matchups, since there are better cards to side in for those matches.

Deathmark and Fire/Ice perform the same duty here, getting rid of hatebears post board (although F/I does not get rid of Iona). Maindecking F/I gives you nice options against aggro pre-board, but it also costs slots I cannot find in my build. I think they are both good options.

As to saying that you are the only one that has ever played the red version, I would like to disagree. I did try your red version (one of the first ones you posted, I think). I put it to several test runs (maybe not as intensively as you did), but it just did not feel right. I always felt like I was playing the slow control game, as to where I'd like my DH deck to play the more combo role, with control elements to aid my combo get through. I guess it's a playing style preference here.

Furthermore, I just think it is unfair to just go around calling people copycats for playing a version that works. You seem to assume that UB players don't playtest and just copy decks they find on deckcheck. I'm sorry to disappoint you there, but I (and I guess most of the other DH players) do test and go through different itterations of the decks card to get to their final decks finished. If you just call UB players copycats, by all means, prove your right and post a finish with your red version. Maybe others will start to copycat your version too.

Maveric78f
02-24-2010, 07:00 AM
Well, I personally prefer Duress vs REB, just because of the fact that you could Duress one turn in advance to going off, thus knowing the opponents hand (or most of it) and knowing what you are up against (countermagic that is). It allows you to better calculate your plays. For REB, you need that extra red mana on the turn you are going to combo, often delaying that turn to get that extra mana source on the board. I often find myself casting Thoughtseize/Duress on turn 2 (seeing little or no counters) and combo out on turn 3. And as you mentioned, Duress and Thoughtseize alone make my matchup against Tendrils decks that much better.
REB does much more than countering countermagic. First of all, it's Card Advantage against FoW, then, it does not fail against Brainstorm and finally, it's also more than countermagic, it kills meddling mage and merfolks for instance.


About the Leyline/Relic issue, I am undecided myself. I found Ichorid to be a hard matchup (because of the speed + disruption (Cabal Therapy/Unmask) they could use). Leyline comes down turn 0 and Ichorid has to find an answer for it if they want to go off, giving you the needed time to assemble all your pieces and combo/beat them out. Relic needs a mana to be cast, and a turn. If Ichorid can start, you could very well be screwed. Yes, Relic cantrips and keeps Goyf very small, but I do not see myself sideboarding in Relics in Goyf matchups, since there are better cards to side in for those matches.
Of course Leyline is better than Relic against Ichorid. I agree that Ichorid is complicated. However as a general grave hate, Relic is better.


Deathmark and Fire/Ice perform the same duty here, getting rid of hatebears post board (although F/I does not get rid of Iona). Maindecking F/I gives you nice options against aggro pre-board, but it also costs slots I cannot find in my build. I think they are both good options.
Death Mark won't kill Iona because Iona will name black. It shuts down as well the combo. Only SnT on Progenitus remains as a game plan in your situation. The problem is that against Iona on the board, Progenitus beatdown is too slow. Fire/Ice will still be effective to some extent. But more importantly, if the opponent chooses blue, you can BW on Anarchy and if he choses red, you can Ice Iona and win the race with SnT on Progenitus. Let's just not lie to each other. iona on the board (before Progenitus) is gg in 75% of the times. We'd better focus on how we can prevent this.


As to saying that you are the only one that has ever played the red version, I would like to disagree. I did try your red version (one of the first ones you posted, I think). I put it to several test runs (maybe not as intensively as you did), but it just did not feel right. I always felt like I was playing the slow control game, as to where I'd like my DH deck to play the more combo role, with control elements to aid my combo get through. I guess it's a playing style preference here.
I'm happy to learn that some other people tried it. My Ur build is slower than the black one I can't deny it. However I'm not sure it's relative to the colour choice. If you prefer explosiveness then you can build a Ur version with petals and without Fire/Ice and tops.


Furthermore, I just think it is unfair to just go around calling people copycats for playing a version that works. You seem to assume that UB players don't playtest and just copy decks they find on deckcheck. I'm sorry to disappoint you there, but I (and I guess most of the other DH players) do test and go through different itterations of the decks card to get to their final decks finished. If you just call UB players copycats, by all means, prove your right and post a finish with your red version. Maybe others will start to copycat your version too.
Compare the GPT lists with the Jon Harbili's here
http://www.deckcheck.net/list.php?type=Dream+Halls

Apart from the Vojtěch Mrz's list, which is also very close, they are exactly the same, except for the fetches. Even the SBs are 80% the same. Don't tell me they're not copycats...

Ps: and I forgot to precise that I don't play tourneys. So it's hard to have any finish. And having a finish (or even 5 as for Jon Harbili's) is definitely not a proof it's a good build. Counter-example? I think you got me.

Hopo
02-24-2010, 07:55 AM
Calling the winning version of the deck worse than your unsuccesful/untested red splash list is plain pointless. You should get that yourself.

Still no love for Academy Rector here? It is an effective way to get the combo going and enables you to play solid disruption in the form of Cabal Therapy and Innocent Blood. I noticed that my rector build has performed a lot better than the 4 Progenitus + 4 Show and Tell version I tried in tournament play. I know people are stuck with thinking that S&T + Progs is the way to go, but I just ended up being raced by lots of stuff when I dropped Progenitus. Rector gives higher chance of actually comboing, and you can't go wrong with that, unlike with plain Progenitus, which is widely answered by a dozen equally effective SB cards. Show and tell complements this by allowing to drop rector a turn earlier or just go straight for the Dream Halls. That has worked for me a lot better than just playing a suboptimal Show and Tell deck.

Maveric78f
02-24-2010, 08:10 AM
Calling the winning version of the deck worse than your unsuccesful/untested red splash list is plain pointless. You should get that yourself.
Why do you call it untested? I've tested it extensively. And that's why I can sustain that the winning version (which is also losing, don't forget it) is worse. I won't force you believe me. But I think you should be able to get my point.

You can tell that my version has no success, I can answer by telling that it's still undefeated. It's as much relevant (or irrelevant).

I posted on the previous Dream Halls thread the first version that did a finish (in late Spetember or early October). It was piloted by a friend of mine and he did 2nd on 50 (approximately, I can't remember the exact number) with an awful list. He recognised it himself right after the tourney. Jon Harbili's list is definitely better than my friend's in a lot of ways. In that sense, it's an improvement. There is still a high improvement potential.

caenel
02-24-2010, 09:00 AM
Still no love for Academy Rector here? It is an effective way to get the combo going and enables you to play solid disruption in the form of Cabal Therapy and Innocent Blood. I noticed that my rector build has performed a lot better than the 4 Progenitus + 4 Show and Tell version I tried in tournament play. I know people are stuck with thinking that S&T + Progs is the way to go, but I just ended up being raced by lots of stuff when I dropped Progenitus. Rector gives higher chance of actually comboing, and you can't go wrong with that, unlike with plain Progenitus, which is widely answered by a dozen equally effective SB cards. Show and tell complements this by allowing to drop rector a turn earlier or just go straight for the Dream Halls. That has worked for me a lot better than just playing a suboptimal Show and Tell deck.

I thought about Rector, but that would go to slots in the deck. What would you take out for your Rector? Firstly, I'd have to splash white (no big deal, -1 Island, -1 Underground Sea, +2 Tundra). The problem I have with Rector is that you still want your 4 Dream Halls in there, probably alongside 4 Rector. I cannot see myself cutting back on Show & Tell either, as it has proven itself over and over again to me. Progenitus? Well, I must admit that I have won more games in tournaments beating people up with Progenitus than I have comboing out with Dream Halls (well, it will be about 50/50 there, maybe not more). Progenitus beats works. End of line. Turn 2/3 Progenitus goes the way about 80-90% of the time. Yes, it can be raced (especially by Goblins). But no, I'd never give up on going for a turn 2/3 Progenitus (Bant hates you when you manage to do that). So cutting Progenitus is out of the question for me too.

Then I'd either be cutting down on protection (Thoughtseize/Cabal Therapy or Force of Will). This is what gives us an edge over ANT. We can actively disrupt/distort the opponents strategy, while they have to rely on Chant effects to go off. Don't think I'd be dropping those.

That leaves me to search. But I just do not feel comfortable with playing less than 11 search effects. I'd always try to keep those in at least, since you have to remember you are playing a combo/semi-combo deck where the combo needs 2 or 3 precise cards to work. I'm currently playing 12 search cards (full sets of Brainstorm/Ponder/Vault), with 1 maindeck Wipe Away as tool against unexpected things. I am going to try the +2 Top, -1 Ponder, -1 Vault and +2 Scroll Rack, -1 Ponder, -1 Vault combinations. This would give me at most 2 spots (the 4th Vault spot, going down to 11 search, and the Wipe Away spot) to play Rector. I just don't see it happen. Maybe if you could provide a decklist with Rector we could go to town with, we might get a better idea of what you mean by playing a Rector/Dream Halls build.

Right now, I'd only see myself maybe splashing white for some sideboarded Chant effects, but I challenge you to convince me otherwise :-)

Hopo
02-24-2010, 09:02 AM
Just take your deck for a tourney or two, that is bound to have better impact than trying to just verbally prove superiority. I also think like you that the list from Hanau is not optimal, but it is performing and that can't be denied. Based on my own experiences and tournament results with different builds, I'm willing to believe that the rector build looks the most promising. I haven't played with Burning Wish, but I understand it's power and always try to cram it in decks I create. Actually a build with Show and Tell only as a wish target sounds really appealing to me, and having a history of using Natural Order in a similar manner (only as a 1-of in SB) I could see that being beneficial for some combo-only approach.

I'd like to point out, that if people agree the 4 Progenitus being standard, then the least space requiring combo set is just 1 Time Stretch. I like the False Cure/Beacon-combination, though, as it ignores the attack step completely and isn't slowed down by minor (or major) life gain. You could theoretically play a build without Progenitus, which is something I try to succesfully accomplish, I guess. I just want to build a combo deck which doesn't die to board control like Moat or Humility or doesn't mess it's draws by rather useless 10-mana dudes, or doesn't deplete it's hand with Show and Tell just to find itself lacking cards in hand to combo.

Maveric78f
02-24-2010, 09:38 AM
We may find an agreement in playing W ;-)

First of all, I'd say I don't like the Academy Rector's plan. It's just 1CC less

Chant is obviously a great card when you don't want your opponent to take advantage of Dream Halls himself. Moreover it can be played as bluff. Chant prevent most dedicated counterspells such as Beb, Reb, Spell Snare.

Enlightened Tutor would also be very good combined with Mystical Tutor. I'd say 3MT and 2ET. ET could also fetch Sphinx for SnT. The MD becomes Spell Snare proof, which is something I like a lot. In SB, meddling mage can be great too.

Hopo
02-24-2010, 11:37 AM
This is my rector list from some time ago, top 8 in 20-30 player Madrid Trial:

4 Conflux
4 Academy Rector
2 Dream Halls
2 cruel ultimatum
1 Time Stretch
1 Progenitus
1 All Sun's Dawn
4 Mox Diamond
4 Cabal Therapy
2 Innocent Blood
4 Brainstorm
2 Mystical tutor
2 Ponder
2 Thoughtseize
4 Polluted Delta
4 Flooded Strand
4 Ancient Tomb
3 Island
3 Underground Sea
3 Tundra
2 scrubland
1 Swamp
1 Plains

Definitely not finished, but I haven't been paying attention to the game recently.

canael said that 4 Dream Halls is needed in rector version. I question that and see no need to play more than two copies if playing a full set of rectors. One for the combo, another just in case. I would now play 4 Innocent Blood and 4 Cabal Therapies as sacrifice outlets. This deck can fairly often go first turn therapy for Stifle, second turn Rector -> therapy flashback-> combo. Rector is somewhat more resistant to discard, since Duress can't take it. Still, consistency issues arise and I need to rethink the whole package again. I want this to be more combo, less Show and Tell. I want to concentrate in comboing asymmetrically and with as minimal chances of my plans backfiring as possible.

Something like this:
4 Academy Rector
4 Conflux
4 Cabal Therapy
4 Innocent Blood
2 Dream Halls
1 False Cure
1 Beacon of Immortality
1 All Sun's Dawn - combo twice if first if fails or combo pieces get discarded. Can be hardcasted and tutored for.
+ cantrips
+ tutors
+ protection
+ manabase

No progenitus. I played before with only 6 protection spells, 4 Therapy + 2 Thoughtseize. This needs to up, so I'm eager to try Orim's Chant.
Academy Rector teases me to put in silver bullets to win when you don't have Conflux in hand but could sacrifice rector, like Form of the Dragon.
I try to build something from that for a coming tournament

dearleader
02-25-2010, 12:17 AM
The thing I dislike about the Rector version is the 3 color mana base. Running a 2 color manabase of mostly basics is one of the strongest aspects of this deck; you crush Thresh and Merfolk with your strong mana base by hardcasting DH after S&T gets countered.

Also, I never liked running a 2 card combo to fetch DH, which then combos with CU/Conflux. It never felt more consistent than the U/B version; Innocent Blood is pretty awkward as a sacrifice outlet as it doesn't stop them from using Swords/PTE.

@Maveric
I don't think making the deck Spell Snare proof is that important. I tend to board out at least 2 Vault (depending on whether or not I know they've boarded out SS) for more disruption, so SS occasionally hits Vault. Besides, the Thresh MU is pretty easy unless they have Vendilion Clique.

As for the UB or UR builds, I don't think one is remarkably better than the other. I like discard and Vault, and playing Burning Wish alongside REB was a bit awkward.

@Caenel
I never thought of Beacon/False Cure as tech against storm. That seems really good. Have you had problems with Beacon/False Cure/Time Stretch dead in your hand? The flexibility of win conditions is why I don't like combo kills - there's very few cases where chaining Confluxes won't win you the game, regardless of what killl you run, so it makes sense to play kill conditions that aren't dead.

I agree that top is clunky against Aggro. It's only better than ponder when you expect the game to last longer than turn 3. I think this partly comes from deck design; Top is very good against control and discard, and my deck is geared towards beating control. For aggro, I board in some Chain of Vapor and Deathmark.

Fatestitcher
02-25-2010, 12:53 AM
Playing 3 colors will screw this deck oftentimes, aside from Thresh and Merfolk, Moon effects and PoP are again rampant. Not to mention StPs and PtEs are certainly everywhere and those are usually enough to spoil the Rector plan.

Even when you can counter their removal spells targeting Rector early in the game, you are already at a disadvantage the fact that you will have less cards to pitch for spells. You might need to wait a turn or two before you draw a colored pitch card. Card disadvantage is the intrinsic weakness of this deck that's why on-top-of-library tutors (except Lim-Dul's) are not popular.

Against control however, the game plan is not rushed and there's time for players to fill up their hands with cards turn after turn. In the current meta, I don't see the 4cc Academy Rector pulling off the same tricks it did during its peak a while back. In a casual meta with no decks-to-beat though it may still have a chance.

caenel
02-25-2010, 03:53 AM
@Caenel
I never thought of Beacon/False Cure as tech against storm. That seems really good. Have you had problems with Beacon/False Cure/Time Stretch dead in your hand? The flexibility of win conditions is why I don't like combo kills - there's very few cases where chaining Confluxes won't win you the game, regardless of what killl you run, so it makes sense to play kill conditions that aren't dead.

- Well, Beacon is mostly a dead card. You could theoretically use it against something like Ichorid/ANT, I guess, but it is waaaay to slow in those matchups.
- Time Stretch is a complete dead card, but as I said in my retrospective at my tournament report, I'm getting out Time Stretch and replacing it (at the moment) with a main deck Wipe Away. The only matchup where you would really like Time Stretch to resolve with Progenitus is against Goblins (as they stand a fairly good chance of racing your big-P). But since Time Stretch has to be cast via DH, you'll be better of just winning that match with the combo kill.
- False Cure is not entirely dead, but it is surely situational. Outside of the combo kill, False Cure can be used when doing Progenitus beats and the opposing player is trying to race big-P by gaining some life. A hard casted False Cure makes sure they cannot race it (see the first game of the first round in my tournament report where I pulled this trick against a Rock player... he really did not see that one coming).

So I'm really only playing one clunky 'unusable' card now (Beacon) and one card that I don't mind seeing when going for a Progenitus race (False Cure). That's the least dead cards in the deck I can possible think of for now.


On a side note: I've been going over my W splash in my head a bit, and I'm going to try this build for now (changes are in bold):


3 Ancient Tomb
2 Flooded Strand
5 Island
2 Misty Rainforest
1 Polluted Delta
2 Scalding Tarn
1 Tundra (took out 1 Underground Sea for this, so the ratio of non-basics remains the same)
2 Underground Sea

4 Lotus Petal

1 False Cure
4 Thoughtseize

4 Brainstorm
4 Dream Halls
4 Force of Will
4 Ponder
4 Show & Tell

1 Beacon of Immortality
2 Orim's Chant (compared to my last tournament deck, I put them in for 1 Time Stretch and 1 Pact of Negation)

4 Conflux
3 Lim-Dl's Vault
4 Progenitus

SB:
3 Deathmark
3 Duress
4 Leyline of the Void
2 Orim's Chant (took out Dispel, since this is even better in every matchup Dispel is relevant)
3 Hydroblast (added 1 to give me a little more edge against red decks like Goblins/Aggro Loam)

The changes are made to incorporate a white splash in the deck for Chant effects. From my experiences, the hard matchups are (as with any combo deck), the U matchups. Most notably Faeries/Countertop/Dark Depths and Dreadstill are hard. Bant also poses a difficult matchup with Forces and Dazes. I now have 9 maindeck answers to counters (4 Forces, 3 Thoughtseize, 2 Orim's Chant) and I'm able to board in 5 more answers (3 Duress, 2 Orim's Chant) bringing the total count to 14. My ANT matchup is not weakened by the change of Orim's Chant for Dispel (it might have even become better). Chant might even function as a little Time Walk main deck when using the Show & Tell --> Progenitus kill, by casting it with kicker. I have 5 sources of white mana (1 Tundra, 4 Lotus Petal) which should prove enough. If not, I'm going to have to replace a basic Island with a Tundra as well. With the maindeck changes, I have been able to adapt the sideboard too, adding 1 Hydroblast to be a bit more defensive against Goblins.

Mind you, this deck build is untested for the moment, but I'd like to hear your thoughts on the changes already :smile:

I'll test it as soon as I can find the time to do so (too bad everyone else is leaving for Madrid tomorrow and I cannot go :frown:), so I'm out of testing crew atm

4zureSky
02-26-2010, 07:24 PM
I have a quick question.. if I play meditate at the end of the person's turn do I skip the turn after I take one or so I skip it right away?

Fatestitcher
02-26-2010, 10:53 PM
You skip it right away because that is your next turn.


I have a quick question.. if I play meditate at the end of the person's turn do I skip the turn after I take one or so I skip it right away?

Dr.AgOn
02-27-2010, 04:33 AM
I really like that list, caenel!! Orim's Chant is a HOUSE in this Deck! It always provides a Time Walk against Most decks. No wonder it's expensive. I'll use Silence for a while, cause I don't have Chants yet... Well, at least Silence doesn't target^^

Piceli89
03-01-2010, 05:25 PM
Maveric, i don't know if you already pointed it out, but did you leave the Relics in the sideboard in the end? It seems to me that it's a bit wasted slots, since you could dedicate that space to add more stuff for the Wish toolbox.
However, atm I'm playing your Ur build (the faster one, w/ petals) and it's surprising consistent,way more than the UB one. I can't understand why people prefer to play with a bad list that relies too much on god draws and plays about 20-24 card disadvantage or dead pre-combo cards, while yours can act as a control deck with a one-turn kill.

The question: did you already found (or wrote) how to side properly against Pro Bant and Merfolk? The list doesn't seem to have lots of cards maindeck that can easily be cut, except for Lotus Petals in g2 when facing slower (i.e. blue) decks. How are you used to perform and to sideboard against those 2?

And another thing. Do you find yourself having a bad time against ANT, since only the presence of Force of Will and Spell Pierce in your build (if compared to the UB one, which has Thoughtseize but no Spell Pierce, even if it gets heavy on counter-discard post side )? I don't know if REBs may be that useful against a good pilot. At least, against me they're not that great.

4zureSky
03-02-2010, 12:42 AM
Hi, I was having a ruling problem with this person on MWS and he/she said if I play dream halls, even he can use it =.= Is that true?

Fatestitcher
03-02-2010, 12:59 AM
If you would carefully read the card, unless it was printed in foreign language, there is no clause that says only you can use it.:smile:

4zureSky
03-02-2010, 01:11 AM
Ohh I actually never knew that! I feel stupid now. So my opponents can also use dream halls but then can they play their sorcery spells as instants or do they have to have to follow the speed of what they are playing?

caenel
03-02-2010, 02:10 AM
Dream Halls does not affect the type of cards, it just provides an alternate means of casting them. This means that sorceries remain sorceries, just with an alternative way of casting them. Your opponent can still only play instant spells or creatures with flash in your turn.

unicoerner
03-08-2010, 09:04 AM
LDV was always underwhelming for me, if LDV is the main reason to run black imo we could look our for another colour. The red build seems very interesting. I am not sure about the white one, becasue i don`t see how it strenghtens our combo. It offers some protection, but nothing else

Maveric78f
03-08-2010, 09:22 AM
As far as I know, red is the best but I can see the benefit of white with STP, chant and Enlightened Tutor. All of them are very valuable in some MUs.

Greenpoe
04-02-2010, 02:56 PM
I got this idea from the Shelldrazi thread, but how about adding Dark Ritual for acceleration, 1x Shelldock Isle, 1x Emrakul, the Aeons Torn instead of Progentius/Show and Tell? It could be even used as a transformational alt-win con. Emrakal kills a turn faster when it hits the field, is uncounterable (and the Shelldock Isle is a land, so their only option is to counter Doomsday), plus them losing 6 permanents is always nice. The advantages are that Doomsday is a 1-card combo, and takes up only 6 slots (4 Doomsday, 1 Shelldock Isle, 1 Emrakul) as opposed to 4 Show and Tell + 4 Progentius (whereas S&T is a two card combo).
Of course, this makes more reliance on black, but I think it would be worth it.

Conficker
04-02-2010, 09:21 PM
Replacing 6-8 blue cards with a Doomsday combo (4 black/2 colorless cards) may have little impact on the deck's performance in terms of pitchability for colored spells as Conflux and Ultimatum are black anyways. However Time Stretch is not. Removing Show and Tell will be a huge mistake. You are taking away an early turn SnT+PRO play which guarantees a win if unanswered. A play that is lethal in 2 turns and is immune to Wasteland, Rishadan Port, Magus of the Moon, Pithing Needle and Stifle btw.

The list is already crammed with cards. A non-Ad Nauseam tendrils shell can probably fit a Doomsday combo. But at what purpose? Ad Nauseam is already established as a fast & consistent storm engine.

Greenpoe
04-02-2010, 11:33 PM
My point was that basically, Doomsday (with just Shelldock Isle and Emrakul to minimize the slots used) is a 1-card combo using 3 total slots while S&T is a 2 card combo, so that's the key benefit, that Doomsday works by itself while S&T needs DH or Progentius to be useful.

Conficker
04-03-2010, 02:59 AM
Let's put Doomsday as strictly a 1-card combo. You cast it turn 3, lose half your life but still it doesn't let you win outright. You need 2 extra turns to draw and activate Shelldock during which an opponent has plenty of time to disrupt you or overrun you with beaters. Goblins, Zoo and Ichorid would gladly rape you.

I would prefer a 2-card combo that let's me win now, or win more with a Progenitus on board that can at least block a few attackers to buy me some time.

tb249606
04-06-2010, 12:50 PM
What are the thoughts for splashing white in this deck instead of R/B? it gives us silence/chant which are great protection/fog/ time walk against alot of decks. it also alllows for the addition of Karakas to deal with a reasolved Ioona, let me know what you think

Conficker
04-06-2010, 03:50 PM
My thoughts, Duress and Thoughtseize already do a great job. Replacing them with Chant or Silence will only burden you with paying the extra mana needed to cast SnT or DH on the same turn. White protection doesn't let you see opponent's hand so if they Force your Chant you can walk blindly into a Daze.

Another reason is that black offers access to Lim-Dul's Vault which can tutor for any card. Dealing with Iona isn't that much of a problem as you have access to both blue and black (or even red) removal spells.

TygerClaw
04-09-2010, 12:09 PM
In the red/blue version, would a pestermite/kiki-jiki combo kill be worth running? Maybe in the sideboard to switch up the kill to use creatures instead of cruel (to get around teeg, ivory mask effects, etc?) I would think most decks would remove their creature kill when siding against this deck? Also this condition wouldn't be completely dependent on dream halls either. Pestermite on your end step, show and tell or even cast kiki-jiki, win?

Just an idea I was considering.

Conficker
04-09-2010, 02:16 PM
I haven't seen a Dream Halls build that can support :r::r::r: for Kiki-jiki. Too many creature cards in fact that can make the list a bit clunky.

That combo however can work in a Hive Mind deck (http://www.mtgthesource.com/forums/showthread.php?16434-[Deck]-Hive-Pact-v-1-0-1&highlight=hive) or possibly Sneak Attack.dec as an alternate kill.

stacker
04-16-2010, 12:29 AM
Any thoughts on replacing progenitus with emrakul? The downside is that you can't use it to cast other spells for free, the upsides are huge.

vv Haha remind me not to post this late again

Hopo
04-16-2010, 05:04 AM
Any thoughts on replacing progenitus with emrakul? The downside is that you can't use it to cast other spells for free, the upsides are huge.

Also, you can't cast it with any of your cards via Dream Halls or can't even tutor it with Conflux. So, what were the upsides again?

Combo Winter
04-20-2010, 04:04 AM
The upside is that you an cast it off a land to get a free turn and win the game With dream halls in play. On a side note what do people think of a recurring insight and trade secrets in the long forgotton mono blue verison.

ProPAIN
04-20-2010, 04:48 AM
Am i missing something ? I tought only colored spells can be played of a dream halls ability and as far as i know colorless isnt a "color".

DireLemming
04-20-2010, 04:57 AM
Eldrazi don't work with Dream Halls:

105.4. [...] “Multicolored” is not a color. Neither is “colorless.”

dearleader
04-20-2010, 04:59 AM
The upside is that you an cast it off a land to get a free turn and win the game With dream halls in play. On a side note what do people think of a recurring insight and trade secrets in the long forgotton mono blue verison.

No. That doesn't work. Colorless is actually not a color. If you want it to work, you could do something like 1x Celestial Dawn to tutor and cast Emrakul.
Emrakul doesn't offer a whole lot to this deck. In general terms, you have the DH combo to beat aggro decks, and S&T Prog to beat control/aggro-control. IMO, the marginal advantages of Emrakul in comparison to Progenitus (being a better S&T target against aggro; slightly better against any other deck) don't make up for the disadvantages (not being able to pitch to FoW, DH). I guess if you really want to improve the aggro MU you can build a DH deck with Emrakul as the S&T target, and Celestial Dawn as the Conflux target. It's not an unreasonable strategy. I'd rather have more colored spells and not run dead cards like Celestial Dawn in my deck.

The concesus is that the mono-blue storm version is pretty unplayable, and in testing it seemed to have strictly worse match ups across the board. In either case, Recurring Insight seems worse than any other draw 4, and Trade Secrets seems poor against, say, Tempo Thresh, where they get to draw the rest of their Dazes, Forces, and Stifles.

dorsch
04-20-2010, 05:06 AM
The upside is that you an cast it off a land to get a free turn and win the game With dream halls in play.
Wrong!
You can not pitch a land nor anything else to cast a colorless spell via dream halls.

LegacyDan
05-01-2010, 03:57 PM
I have noticed Dream Halls players are using less and less Conflux combo and more and more 2 card kilmecs like Magister Sphinx/Searing Wind and Beacon of Immortality/False Cure. is this a reginal thing or are other metas doing this as well.

Cavius The Great
05-01-2010, 06:18 PM
This deck should be in DtB. I mean for real. Whoever thought up playing Conflux in the deck, mad props.

Banana
05-02-2010, 03:23 PM
I have noticed Dream Halls players are using less and less Conflux combo and more and more 2 card kilmecs like Magister Sphinx/Searing Wind and Beacon of Immortality/False Cure. is this a reginal thing or are other metas doing this as well.

I notice that too. I am not sure if that is because people are saying/experiencing the conflux combo is a little chunky.

I am currently testing out an U/G Dream Halls built that use the cards: Coalition Victory/Prismatic Omen/Progenitus for the win.

Adan
05-02-2010, 05:22 PM
Wrong!
You can not pitch a land nor anything else to cast a colorless spell via dream halls.

The key to make this work is Painter's Servant. If you have a way to abuse him as well as Dream Halls, you could go insane with the Eldrazi Colossi.

dearleader
05-03-2010, 05:11 AM
I have noticed Dream Halls players are using less and less Conflux combo and more and more 2 card kilmecs like Magister Sphinx/Searing Wind and Beacon of Immortality/False Cure. is this a reginal thing or are other metas doing this as well.

wait what.

You need Conflux to find your kill conditions. Is there something I'm not getting?

In this deck, over 95% of the time your precise kill conditions won't matter. Conflux is effectively the kill condition, because it tutors up a ton of cards. I mean, there are some kill conditions that are situationally/arguably better than others, and there's obviously kill conditions that are strictly worse, but the improvements are so marginal that they're hardly worth the effort to discuss. The Beacon/False cure win package is small and at instant speed; the Cruel Ultimatum (no nucklavee) win package effectively has no dead cards.


The key to make this work is Painter's Servant. If you have a way to abuse him as well as Dream Halls, you could go insane with the Eldrazi Colossi.

With the amount of crazy suggestions in this thread, I don't know if this is sarcastic or not. Anyways, it doesn't solve the problem of tutoring up Painter's Servant with Conflux and then casting it off DH. I guess the U/B deck can tutor for LDV + Dark Ritual/SnT to grab and cast Painter's Servant, and maybe the U/R deck can use them with REB or something. A U/W build could run Enlightened Tutors and maybe Grindstone, but at that point you'd be better off running U/W Dreamhalls with PainterStone as your win condition. It seems like too much trouble for a change in win cons - having it as a 1 of makes it relatively useless in the deck, while running 4 Painter's Servant demands an overhaul to the deck that might not be worth casting Eldrazi.

Celestial Dawn is the slightly better alternative to Painter's Servant if you don't have other ways of abusing Painter's Servant(say, in the U/B build). In this situation, Celestial Dawn is effectively a 1 card kill condition. Conflux for a bunch of counters/utility, then cast Progenitus and Emrakul.

The alternative to all this is to run a split of Progenitus and Emrakul as your 4-5 SnT targets, and then go for Conflux into SnT and LDV, then LDV into Emrakul. You don't get to cast Emrakul, but assuming that you've tutored up some utility spells / countermagics and can live for one more turn, you should be fine.

Dia_Bot
05-03-2010, 02:04 PM
I agree with dearleader. Cutting the conflux combo from the list is a bad Idea.

LegacyDan
05-04-2010, 12:45 AM
hey dudes, I don't play this deck. I was just curious because I lost two games to the affor mentioned cards.

Puzzle
05-04-2010, 02:36 PM
The Beacon/False cure win package is small and at instant speed; the Cruel Ultimatum (no nucklavee) win package effectively has no dead cards.

I agree with most of what you said but Beacon and False Cure being instant-speed is irrelevant, as Conflux and Dream Halls are not.
That's why in decks using Progenitus, i.e. most of them, I think the Coalition Victory + Prismatic Omen is strictly superior to it.

Oh, and the Painter suggestion was indeed sarcastic and quite juicy at that.

kkoie
05-10-2010, 08:29 AM
I have been working on this deck for a few weeks and I am constantly frustrated on how difficult the Merfolk matchup is. Are their any varients or sideboard solutions that people have tried that helped? I have tried propaganda on the past, but was dissatisfied with the results. What are peoples thoughts on splashing red for firespout?

ImpinAintEasy
05-10-2010, 10:47 AM
I have been working on this deck for a few weeks and I am constantly frustrated on how difficult the Merfolk matchup is. Are their any varients or sideboard solutions that people have tried that helped? I have tried propaganda on the past, but was dissatisfied with the results. What are peoples thoughts on splashing red for firespout?

I've been testing this online for awhile and it is a tough matchup. Even with propaganda, often times they can just attack with pumped up lords. Plus they can usually out counter you. I've thought of crazy things like show and tell for form of the dragon or firespout like you suggested. I've recently put in Karakas in the manabase to help fend off Reanimator's Iona so I was thinking of splashing white for moat which could also be abused by show and tell. I am currently settled on a mono blue version utilitizing rushing rivers in sb and propaganda for this matchup but im really not that sold on the matchup as of yet.

In my testing this deck folds to heavy discard (BW or BGW decks), I have not tried the meditate option in sb yet, but have tried mystic remora. To me this matchup is far worse than merfolk. I am curious if anyone has suggestions for it.

dearleader
05-10-2010, 03:57 PM
I agree with most of what you said but Beacon and False Cure being instant-speed is irrelevant, as Conflux and Dream Halls are not.
That's why in decks using Progenitus, i.e. most of them, I think the Coalition Victory + Prismatic Omen is strictly superior to it.

Oh, and the Painter suggestion was indeed sarcastic and quite juicy at that.

I originally thought the same about Beacon + False Cure. Caenel pointed out in his tournament report that it's very useful in the ANT MU. If they know what you're playing, they can try to cast Ad Nauseam off your DH with Conflux still on the stack, and then chant you. With Beacon + False Cure, you can then win on their upkeep.

I actually don't see why Beacon + False Cure is worse than Coalition Victory + Prismatic Omen. Both require 2 dead cards. In fact, I'd say Beacon + False Cure is strictly better because of the benefit in the ANT MU



I have been working on this deck for a few weeks and I am constantly frustrated on how difficult the Merfolk matchup is. Are their any varients or sideboard solutions that people have tried that helped? I have tried propaganda on the past, but was dissatisfied with the results. What are peoples thoughts on splashing red for firespout?


In my testing this deck folds to heavy discard (BW or BGW decks), I have not tried the meditate option in sb yet, but have tried mystic remora. To me this matchup is far worse than merfolk. I am curious if anyone has suggestions for it.

The answer to both is to play a ton of basics and play Sensei's Top. The deck only needs 1 blue mana to function, and Sensei's top helps you cantrip to find lands and multiple combo pieces. I don't know why a lot of lists run a ton of Seas and Tombs with 17 lands - that's just asking to lose to wasteland, and I feel the added vulnerability to wasteland in a deck that wants to get to 4-6 mana is not worth it. This deck wins the counter wars against Merfolk. You have discard + Force + multiple win cons that they have to counter. Use good jugement in grabbing duals and fetching. If they leave mana open for Stifle, they are effectively slowing themselves down by a turn as well, so you're in no hurry to fetch. Versions that run Echoing Truth are a bit more difficult, but they usually only run 2 if any, so try to grab a duress with LDV. If you just need 1 combo piece off a Lim Dul's Vault and you have Top out or Brainstorm in hand, try to find a pile with Combo Piece + Disruption. Sometimes, if you Thoughseize them and see a hand with few creatures, you can try to go for the Progenitus plan.

The key against merfolk is to play basic lands to negate their daze and cursecatcher. If you can play around those, throw out unprotected S&T's to test if they have FOW. In testing, Merfolk was positive preboard. I played merfolk against Dream Halls and felt like I couldn't win unless I had 2 force. The mana denial strategy was completely ineffective. They have to try to kill you by turn 4-5. As a sidenote, I was playing against a version that ran Pact of Negation instead of FoW. It actually works wonders against any non-combo blue deck, because they are so good in multiples - as opposed to FoW which is really bad in multiples. You punt game 1 pretty bad to faster combo, but that's what the SB is for.

Discard is indeed a tough MU. Top helps by letting you float combo pieces on top of your library. If they don't have a fast clock, just play lands for a while and then win when you can rip the combo off the top with Sensei's top or an EOT Lim-Dul's Vault.

ImpinAintEasy
05-11-2010, 11:17 AM
@dearleader

Thanks for the response. My deck pretty much runs 6 basic island, 2 Karakas, 3 Ancient Tomb, 7 Fetches. I decided to stray away from UB and focus on a more mono blue build. Keep in mind the online meta is different than paper for a variaty of reasons. I haven't tried Top to be honest, so that is an option. The online meta is full of RB Goblins, Dredge, Zoo, Death and Taxes, Reanimator and ANT. RB Goblins and DnT are 1, 2 in showings due to the relatively lower cost of entry.


Here is my current build for clarification:

Creatures (5)
1 Bogardan Hellkite
1 Magister Sphinx
3 Progenitus

Spells (37)
4 Brainstorm
4 Force of Will
4 Conflux
2 Cruel Ultimatum
4 Ponder
4 Spell Pierce
1 Rushing River
2 Spell Snare
4 Show and Tell
4 Dream Halls
4 Lotus Petal
37 cards

Lands (18)
3 Ancient Tomb
4 Flooded Strand
6 Island
3 Polluted Delta
2 Karakas


Sideboard
3 Hydroblast
2 Dispel
3 Mindbreak Trap
3 Propaganda
2 Relic of Progenitus
2 Tormod's Crypt
15 cards

Puzzle
05-18-2010, 06:34 AM
I originally thought the same about Beacon + False Cure. Caenel pointed out in his tournament report that it's very useful in the ANT MU. If they know what you're playing, they can try to cast Ad Nauseam off your DH with Conflux still on the stack, and then chant you. With Beacon + False Cure, you can then win on their upkeep.

I actually don't see why Beacon + False Cure is worse than Coalition Victory + Prismatic Omen. Both require 2 dead cards. In fact, I'd say Beacon + False Cure is strictly better because of the benefit in the ANT MU
I must admit I hadn't thought of that case.
What I thought of was Solitary Confinment and Stifle but most importantly the dreaded Lich play. (There's also Sulfuric Vortex but that's a narrow case I won't argue).


By the way, I'm currently testing a blue version as follows.
I must admit the testing is slow-going because of lack of time but I'm curious as to why no-one else seems to have tried it, so if there's a good reason not to waste my time on it, please advise.
I can think of the Krosan Grip issue, which black solves but what else is there ?
On the + side, it withstands Wasteland and discard better, is immune to Stifle, doesn't piss life to the wind, and is less likely to run short of CA.

17 Island
4 Crystal Vein
3 Saprazzan Skerry

4 Ponder
4 Intuition
3 Mystic Remora

4 Force of Will
2 Misdirection
2 Daze

3 Progenitus
4 Show and Tell
4 Dream Halls
4 Conflux
1 Prismatic Omen
1 Coalition Victory

Edit : seeing the list like this (on a computer screen), replacing a Conflux with a Progenitus or Time Stretch may be a good move.

Blackmagic
06-04-2010, 03:53 AM
I'm interested in this deck but I only own one show and tell, is there any list or strategy that you guys can provide without show and tell? Any help would be appreciated.
Also have anyone tried ancestral vision against discard strategies? divert also seems decent.

say no to scurvy
06-04-2010, 04:01 AM
this deck revolves around show and tell, you can't replace it

try hypergenesis instead

Blackmagic
06-04-2010, 07:52 AM
Okay, what I meant was is there a different take on the deck, without show and tell (not trying to replace it with something I can't cast 1gg?).

Without show and tell the multiple progenitus's are redundant so alot of slots are open.
I accept it's not going to be as good, just a budget build, but what would be a suitable alternate win?
Or isit better just putting in more search options to find the conflux combo quicker?

I know there was a early version using grozoth to find searing winds, that would be a cheap alternate route. what else?
(I know it sounds scrubby but just wanna hear someones thoughts on the best alternate strategy, any decklist will be appreciated, thanx)

Banana
06-04-2010, 07:43 PM
Patrick Chapin came up with the idea of using Grozoth to find Searing Wind and casting it with Dream Halls without Show and Tell

http://www.deckcheck.net/deck.php?id=28917

Here is the decklist

Land (19)
4x Ancient Tomb
2x Flooded Strand
2x Island
2x Misty Rainforest
2x Polluted Delta
2x Scalding Tarn
4x Underground Sea
1x Volcanic Island

Creature (3)
3x Grozoth

Instant (18)
4x Brainstorm
4x Force of Will
3x Lim-Dul's Vault
3x Pact of Negation
4x Searing Wind

Sorcery (12)
4x Conflux
4x Ponder
4x Thoughtseize

Enchantment (4)
4x Dream Halls

Artifact (4)
4x Chrome Mox

Blackmagic
06-05-2010, 04:42 AM
Thanx Banana,
this is what more like what I was looking for.
Any obvious suggestions to add, maybe something like simian spirit guide instead of chrome mox, because chrome mox robs a card which you don't wan't in this deck coz you need as much cards in hand as possibe plus it also can be ditched to searing wind?
What about inkwell leviathan as an additional 9 cost spell?
Would you add a pretty standard sideboard to this deck or would this version have a completely different sb?
discard heavy decks are my main concern so what do you think of ancestral vision as a sb option against discard, what is the best option against discard is it really meditate?

dearleader
06-07-2010, 02:27 AM
Why play a card that can only tutor for 9cc cards when you can play a card that tutors for any card? You can win with searing wind while playing Conflux too, although Searing Wind is a pretty bad win condition. Conflux is just flat out better than Grozoth.

If you're not playing S&T, then you might consider taking a more control route. I wouldn't know what that would look like, but S&T is the card that makes this a viable combo deck.

>> Discard
Ugh, this question gets asked by everyone - I swear I've offered my advice on this about 6 times in this thread. this was in my post just a couple posts up. Please take time to RTFT.

Discard is indeed a tough MU. Top helps by letting you float combo pieces on top of your library. If they don't have a fast clock, just play lands for a while and then win when you can rip the combo off the top with Sensei's top or an EOT Lim-Dul's Vault.

In testing this seemed to work. stuff like hypnotic specter could wreck you, but that's hardly played anymore. Top lets you filter cards beyond the first few turns, and then you can win once you find one/both combo pieces on top of your library. I prefer to run maindeck top, but builds that focus on a fast combo or Progenitus prefer ponder.


>> Puzzle
The mono-blue builds where covered in the old Dream Halls thread in N&D. I think the general consensus was that fetchlands were good, LDV was too good not be played in a deck with so many combo pieces, and that discard is great for this deck. I'd like to stress that last point, because pitch counters are not great in this deck. The ideal combo turn involves: S&T -> DH -> Conflux pitching a card. With FoW backup, you'd need 6 colored cards in hand. Discard is a 1 for 1 against control, and you'd be happy to see them in multiples, whereas the second FoW usually pitches to the first one. This is also the reason why Pact of Negation is better in combo-light metagames; 2 Pact of Negations = 2 counters, 2 FoW = 1 counter.

Intuition is a decent replacement for LDV, but the main benefit of LDV was to tutor up whatever you needed on turn 2 to combo off the next turn.

If you want to play UB, try playing a U/B build with 20-21 lands with 12-13 of them being basics, and 3-4 dark rituals. I usually only play 1-2 duals because it's rare that I'd ever want more than 1 black mana, and you really want to be hitting your first 3 land drops if you didn't get a nutty hand.

Banana
06-08-2010, 01:50 AM
Anyone tried using Child of Alara as a sideboard strategy? I thought it is nice restart if you get rushed by decks like Zoo, Goblins, Dredge maybe (any aggro decks that doesn't have haste) etc. when you can pitch it to the graveyard and then reset the board (minus the Land since they can't be destory.

Hopo
06-08-2010, 03:03 AM
Anyone tried using Child of Alara as a sideboard strategy? I thought it is nice restart if you get rushed by decks like Zoo, Goblins, Dredge maybe (any aggro decks that doesn't have haste) etc. when you can pitch it to the graveyard and then reset the board (minus the Land since they can't be destory.

What's wrong with Damnation/Firespout/Wrath of God or other more playable spells? Also, I believe you got it wrong regarding how the card actually works. Pitching it to graveyard does nothing.

Sleep Well
06-08-2010, 04:40 PM
I've been having a really hard time with the merfolk matchup; I haven't tested it yet but has anyone considered maybe counting down the island count by one for a volcanic island and putting firespout or something to the SB?

ImpinAintEasy
06-08-2010, 05:40 PM
I've been having a really hard time with the merfolk matchup; I haven't tested it yet but has anyone considered maybe counting down the island count by one for a volcanic island and putting firespout or something to the SB?

Wouldn't propaganda be a better option? It doesn't weaken your manabase and should provide enough stall to combo out. The match is not easy though, that is for sure.

Firespout might worth testing though. I think someone had tried fire/ice earlier in the thread as well.

Sleep Well
06-08-2010, 08:17 PM
Wouldn't propaganda be a better option? It doesn't weaken your manabase and should provide enough stall to combo out. The match is not easy though, that is for sure.

Firespout might worth testing though. I think someone had tried fire/ice earlier in the thread as well.

Well my thought process was that, it'd be a push in our favor towards helping out with that MU (Merfolk Specifically). Because it's not a good MU at the moment. I plan on testing it at some point.

Dr.AgOn
06-11-2010, 02:02 AM
Sry for double post..

Dr.AgOn
06-11-2010, 02:03 AM
Anyone tried using Child of Alara as a sideboard strategy? I thought it is nice restart if you get rushed by decks like Zoo, Goblins, Dredge maybe (any aggro decks that doesn't have haste) etc. when you can pitch it to the graveyard and then reset the board (minus the Land since they can't be destory.

Doesn't work while pitching. Has to be on the battlefield first in order to trigger.

dearleader
06-11-2010, 03:24 PM
Well my thought process was that, it'd be a push in our favor towards helping out with that MU (Merfolk Specifically). Because it's not a good MU at the moment. I plan on testing it at some point.

What specifically are you having trouble with in the Merfolk MU? Usually they just have 1 counter that you duress, or you FoW/Pact of Negation it, or you bait out a counter with S&T and then hardcast Dream Halls. Their land desctruction is the only thing that hurts you, so you just need to play around that. The deck's primary strength against Merfolk is that Merfolk only has FoW as a hard counter, whereas Dream Halls has 7-8 disruption pieces, 4 S&T, and 4 dream halls that they must deal with. They don't match up with dream halls even if you count their soft counters. The only way they do well is if they go Turn 1 Vial turn 2 Waste + Stifle, or some variation thereof, but you can play around land destruction by fetching basics and only fetching when they tap out, when you have extra lands in hand, or when they drop Standstill. Stifle is actually not that great for Merfolk in this match up; the only time they're winning by keeping stifle mana open instead of dropping dudes is if they have a vial out, and even then that approach gives you about 6-7 turns to assemble your combo.

I've playtested Merfolk against my friend who was playing a Dream Halls build of 20-21 land (mostly basics and fetches with 1-2 duals) and Pact of Negations instead of FoW. DH won all but 2 games. 1 game I had a godly draw that had a lot of creatures and drew into 2 FoW. The other game was when DH was mana screwed for a while and had to S&T progenitus, which I only raced by dropping LoA off S&T. I'm not claiming to be a good merfolk player, but the matches were all pretty onesided.

Combo Winter
06-20-2010, 08:44 AM
This deck is in need of 4 grim monolith. Which probably would go well with the inculsion of intuition over limduls vault. I think that dreamhalls will become the combo deck in legacy post ban list changes. grim monolith is like 20x better than show and tell not that im say cutting show and tell is smart its just that grim monolith is a perfect fit for acell in a deck like this.

say no to scurvy
06-20-2010, 08:53 AM
grim monolith can only support dream halls and no other cards in the deck. progenitus is my win-con half the time, so unless you have a build that's pure combo, i can't fathom including monolith currently.

Sleep Well
06-20-2010, 04:27 PM
What specifically are you having trouble with in the Merfolk MU? Usually they just have 1 counter that you duress, or you FoW/Pact of Negation it, or you bait out a counter with S&T and then hardcast Dream Halls. Their land desctruction is the only thing that hurts you, so you just need to play around that. The deck's primary strength against Merfolk is that Merfolk only has FoW as a hard counter, whereas Dream Halls has 7-8 disruption pieces, 4 S&T, and 4 dream halls that they must deal with. They don't match up with dream halls even if you count their soft counters. The only way they do well is if they go Turn 1 Vial turn 2 Waste + Stifle, or some variation thereof, but you can play around land destruction by fetching basics and only fetching when they tap out, when you have extra lands in hand, or when they drop Standstill. Stifle is actually not that great for Merfolk in this match up; the only time they're winning by keeping stifle mana open instead of dropping dudes is if they have a vial out, and even then that approach gives you about 6-7 turns to assemble your combo.

I've playtested Merfolk against my friend who was playing a Dream Halls build of 20-21 land (mostly basics and fetches with 1-2 duals) and Pact of Negations instead of FoW. DH won all but 2 games. 1 game I had a godly draw that had a lot of creatures and drew into 2 FoW. The other game was when DH was mana screwed for a while and had to S&T progenitus, which I only raced by dropping LoA off S&T. I'm not claiming to be a good merfolk player, but the matches were all pretty onesided.

Playing around merfolk is fine but they put you on such a fast clock sometimes propaganda isnt even enough, I tried using firespout I just didnt like it. I don't know about those results but I can easily say that merfolk is one of our worst match ups. We steamroll aggro but aggro control not so much.

Vacrix
06-20-2010, 04:31 PM
Patrick Chapin came up with the idea of using Grozoth to find Searing Wind and casting it with Dream Halls without Show and Tell
I doubt he came up with that idea. It was mentioned numerous times in the decks original development.
Either way, the SnT package looks much stronger. Chapin is just a ballsy pro. :D

dearleader
06-21-2010, 03:33 PM
Playing around merfolk is fine but they put you on such a fast clock sometimes propaganda isnt even enough, I tried using firespout I just didnt like it. I don't know about those results but I can easily say that merfolk is one of our worst match ups. We steamroll aggro but aggro control not so much.

Hmm. It would help if you could point out how you're having more trouble with Merfolk than any other aggro deck. Is it a problem with cantripping? A combination of Daze and Cursecatcher? Mana denial or Standstill?

From my experience, Merfolk is like a slower Zoo, except with 4 FoW and no burn. In the games that I've played FoW are pretty negligible, since Duress, FoW/Pact, and even S&T can deal with them, and with no deck manipulation they only get FoW in about half their games anyways.

Sleep Well
06-21-2010, 07:22 PM
Hmm. It would help if you could point out how you're having more trouble with Merfolk than any other aggro deck. Is it a problem with cantripping? A combination of Daze and Cursecatcher? Mana denial or Standstill?

From my experience, Merfolk is like a slower Zoo, except with 4 FoW and no burn. In the games that I've played FoW are pretty negligible, since Duress, FoW/Pact, and even S&T can deal with them, and with no deck manipulation they only get FoW in about half their games anyways.

May I ask you what you board in?

EDIT: I don't run pact of negation, how helpful do you find it?

dearleader
06-25-2010, 05:28 PM
I barely board in anything for merfolk. Sometimes I board in Spell Pierce/Discard if I see a lot of Spell Pierce in game 2. I'm toying with boarding out Progenitus for some Innocent Blood or bounce spells to help buy a few turns. I already have more disruption in my mainboard than they do, so I usually don't change anything.


The ideal combo turn involves: S&T -> DH -> Conflux pitching a card. With FoW backup, you'd need 6 colored cards in hand. Discard is a 1 for 1 against control, and you'd be happy to see them in multiples, whereas the second FoW usually pitches to the first one. This is also the reason why Pact of Negation is better in combo-light metagames; 2 Pact of Negations = 2 counters, 2 FoW = 1 counter.

The essential purpose of playing Pact is that it requires 1 fewer card in your hand to combo off. This deck doesn't want FoW for the same reason why this deck doesn't want to play against discard. There's very few must counter cards you'd want to 2-for-1 yourself for, and those are mostly in opposing combo decks. Even in the Countertop-Bant matchup, FoW-ing a CB still puts you in a losing position - spell-pierce or Thoughtseize/duress from the SB can help take care of it. When playing with Pacts, it's not uncommon to combo off with double-Pact backup, which never happens with FoW. One thing with Pact is that you have to be careful with it. It's much better when paired with duress, so you don't accidentally kill yourself while playing against 2-3 counters. Also, being able to trade your Pacts with their FoW gives you such an advantage in the mid-late game.

One reason for running FoW is that it allows you to go S&T->Prog against CB and other control decks, which is very potent. I only run 1-2 progenitus main, so it doesn't happen for me as often, but this is a valid strategy.

I really want to hear about what specific problems you guys are having with various MUs. There may be a lot of problems that I've missed in testing. I don't get to do much testing now, so any discussion about how to play specific MUs are very helpful.

festeringGAB
06-26-2010, 04:44 AM
hi :)

what do you think about this build?

4 brainstorm
4 force of will
3 spell pierce
3 daze
4 Lim dul's vault
4 Ponder
4 Conflux
4 Show and tell
4 Thoughtseize
4 progenitus
4 Dream halls
1 Pandemonio

3 Ancient tomb
4 Underground sea
4 Polluted delta
1 Flooded Strand
5 Isola

we have lost lotus petal but we have more counter..
do you think it's a good idea?
and we have only one closing, pandemonium + Progenitus..so there are 2 free slot for other cards..

Banana
08-01-2010, 02:53 AM
Pandemonium seems like a pretty neato combo pieces... instead of using Searing Wind.

Darkenslight
08-01-2010, 06:06 AM
Quick question - can you cast an Emrakul using Dream Halls? Last time I checked, you couldn't cast artifacts, as they had no colour.

Puzzle
08-02-2010, 08:50 AM
Quick question - can you cast an Emrakul using Dream Halls? Last time I checked, you couldn't cast artifacts, as they had no colour.
Quick answer : RTFT.
It was answered less than two pages ago.

Darkenslight
08-02-2010, 11:13 AM
Yeah, apparently, I'm a moron. :)

I like the alternate wincon interactions, too. I also like the PS/Grind possibility as a possible wincon in the side.

Banana
08-22-2010, 07:17 PM
Painter's/Grindstone is a neat idea. I read somewhere someone suggest using Painter's to cheat with the color restriction of all the Eldrazi such as Emrakul. But I think if you are going to play that combo pieces there are better list that focus on that instead.

Not to take any credit from Harbili for winning it all or others who placed top 8 with this deck... do you think it might be folks are now aware of this deck so they know what to do against it resulting in the success of this deck in tournment?

Silent Requiem
08-24-2010, 03:30 AM
I've been getting a little bored of UB Dreamhalls and I'm looking for a bit of a change. Has anyone been working on the UR version? I really like the idea of Burning Wish.

-Silent Requiem

Banana
08-26-2010, 01:33 PM
Nucklavee seems like a really good card for U/R Dream Halls...

Shai tan teh reaper
10-05-2010, 12:43 AM
I've been getting a little bored of UB Dreamhalls and I'm looking for a bit of a change. Has anyone been working on the UR version? I really like the idea of Burning Wish.

-Silent Requiem

I played the Red versoin for a few mounth's (Burning wish, Simian Spirt Guide, Fire/ice, nucklavee) the only problem I had was that you still need to keep black and the decks mana base gets realy shady at 3color. I also never played with a single conflux card is trash, so if ur a fan of conflux chain win versoins (I think most are) burning wish dosen't really give you much, if you go with a cruel ultimatuim and critter win (less win more verson as i like to call it) burning wish is amazing

mistercakes
01-21-2011, 04:39 PM
anyone still playing this deck? i'm interested in sleeving it up and taking it to a local.

is there a current u/b list, or is this deck pretty much off the map?

Silent Requiem
01-22-2011, 02:31 AM
The deck is decent, but not yet optimized.

As with most combo decks, it will never be seriously played by more than a handful of people, and, as with most combo decks, a pilot has to devote at least a year to the deck before they can play it properly.

-Silent Requiem

Kratosso
01-24-2011, 10:30 AM
3 Progenitus

4 Brainstorm
4 Force of Will
3 Intuition
2 Lim-Dl's Vault
4 Conflux
4 Cruel Ultimatum

4 Ponder
4 Show and Tell
4 Thoughtseize

4 Dream Halls

3 Lotus Petal
3 Ancient Tomb
5 Island
3 Misty Rainforest
4 Polluted Delta
2 Underground Sea

Testing Intuition that's like a tutor.

kkoie
01-24-2011, 10:55 AM
I would agree with Silent's reply. However below is the list I piloted at last years Columbus Grand Prix to a 5/4 finish day one (should've won rnd 9 but I was out of contention for day 2, hungry, and annoyed w/ loss to hivemind rnd 8, go figure). I can tell you my four losses were to Probant, New Horizons, Hive Mind (a nightmare matchup, they had prog. hate and dreamhalls helps them win faster than me), and Zoo.

If I were to play it again I would make some changes, specially to the sideboard and manabase (-2 usea +2 fetches).

4 Progenitus
4 Show and Tell
4 Dream Halls
4 Conflux
1 Beacon of Immortality
1 False Cure

4 Force of Will
4 Thoughtseize
1 Duress
1 Wipeaway
4 Brainstorm
3 Ponder
4 Lim-Dul's Vault
4 Lotus Petal

3 Ancient Tomb
4 Underground Sea
1 Swamp
4 Polluted Delta
5 Island

Sideboard was
3 Duress
3 Deathmark
3 Meditate
3 Planar Void
3 Propaganda

Morim_Brightsmoke
02-20-2011, 11:52 PM
Have people considered running praetor's counsel in this deck as a one of to reset your hand. It seems pretty insane since you are actually discarding to fuel the combo itself. It may be win more, but then again everything after you play dream halls feels a bit win more, and you have to play something. Just a thought.

nodahero
02-21-2011, 04:16 PM
Counsel while extremely bomby serves little purpose for the most part... What does it actually do to aid you in?

Are you using it as a 5th Conflux effectively?

Shai tan teh reaper
06-16-2011, 03:37 PM
// Lands
2 [R] Underground Sea
2 [R] Volcanic Island
4 [ZEN] Scalding Tarn
4 [ON] Polluted Delta
2 [A] Island (2)
1 [A] Mountain (2)
1 [A] Swamp (2)
1 [R] Badlands
1 [CS] Snow-Covered Island

// Creatures
1 [EVE] Nucklavee
4 [PLC] Simian Spirit Guide
1 [CFX] Progenitus

// Spells
4 [SH] Dream Halls
4 [JU] Burning Wish
3 [US] Show and Tell
3 [LRW] Ponder
4 [MM] Brainstorm
4 [AL] Force of Will
1 [LRW] Cryptic Command
4 [ALA] Cruel Ultimatum
4 [LRW] Thoughtseize
3 [TE] Intuition
2 [M11] Preordain

// Sideboard
SB: 1 [US] Show and Tell
SB: 1 [10E] Deathmark
SB: 2 [SHM] Firespout
SB: 1 [CFX] Conflux
SB: 2 [A] Blue Elemental Blast
SB: 3 [A] Red Elemental Blast
SB: 1 [US] Meltdown
SB: 2 [TSP] Wipe Away
SB: 1 [FD] Night's Whisper
SB: 1 [US] Duress

I have been having really good success with this list. Don't have time to explain choices now but nothing else was happening on the thread so figured it couldn't hurt to share with anyone interested in the deck still :).

Silent Requiem
06-17-2011, 03:31 AM
It's been a long while since I played Dream Halls, but I like some of the innovations in your list.

First, I agree that SSG is better than lotus petal. Sure, it does not combine with Ancient Tomb (which you are not running anyway) for a T1 Show and Tell, but it was far more common to be staring at Lotus Petal with a Dream Halls in play and wishing that it had a color.

You also seem to be doing without the Progenitus beats as a (major) alternate win. I think that's sensible, as decks like Zoo could race Progenitus anyway. Equally, Emrakul makes Progenitus far less impressive.

Nucklavee is worth playing; some decks do gain life, and you want to be able to deal the damage you need.

If you are not playing Lim Dul's Vault, though, I'd be tempted to drop black completely. You want your colours as consistent as possible, and Duress does nothing that blue can't do in other ways.

In general, your list looks slower than the list I used to play, but more consistent. I really like it.


-Silent Requiem

Shai tan teh reaper
06-17-2011, 01:46 PM
It's been a long while since I played Dream Halls, but I like some of the innovations in your list.

First, I agree that SSG is better than lotus petal. Sure, it does not combine with Ancient Tomb (which you are not running anyway) for a T1 Show and Tell, but it was far more common to be staring at Lotus Petal with a Dream Halls in play and wishing that it had a color.

You also seem to be doing without the Progenitus beats as a (major) alternate win. I think that's sensible, as decks like Zoo could race Progenitus anyway. Equally, Emrakul makes Progenitus far less impressive.

Nucklavee is worth playing; some decks do gain life, and you want to be able to deal the damage you need.

If you are not playing Lim Dul's Vault, though, I'd be tempted to drop black completely. You want your colours as consistent as possible, and Duress does nothing that blue can't do in other ways.

In general, your list looks slower than the list I used to play, but more consistent. I really like it.


-Silent Requiem

Yep SSG is much better then petal the mass number of games

When I first picked up Dreamhalls I think I ran 3 Progenitus but the card is not the one card win it used to be. Merfolks walk by him, zoo does not usually care about him, and anything else will have something more scary. I have played around 200+ with list similar to the one I posted and I have yet to Ever swing with the one Progenitus (and not becouse I i did not have him).

Nucklavee is the key to the whole deck. He is the one that takes away the worries of fizzle-ing for a non-conflux chain version. When you get Dreamhalls out and have a wish you win. You grab conflux then have conflux grab Nucklavee, Cryptic, Cruel, Prog ---> Pitch Nucklavee to play cruel, get Nucklavee back, Pitch Cryptic to play Nucklavee getting back Cryptic and Cruel. Pitch a card to Play Cryptic on Nucklavee, then repeat.

I dropped LDV as I found myself holding the card the majority of the time I drew it as I did not want to lose a card to do something I can do without losing a card. I tried dropping black before but the loss of Thoughtsieze hurts really hard, it does do thing blue counterparts can't ---> It hits krosan Grip, it comes down before you combo so you do not need mana open, gives you info, takes cards that will be problems when you cast show and tell.

Thank you :). It is a fun deck and very underrated. Thanks for thoughts

lorddotm
06-17-2011, 06:26 PM
snip

Although this does nothing to advance the deck, I have a "Fight War Not Wars" tattoo on my arm. Great band, The Feeding of the 5000 is one of my favorite albums of all time.

Your list does look pretty sweet though, do you ever find you are having trouble finding Dream Halls?

lorddotm
06-17-2011, 06:26 PM
snip

Although this does nothing to advance the deck, I have a "Fight War Not Wars" tattoo on my arm. Great band, The Feeding of the 5000 is one of my favorite albums of all time.

Shai tan teh reaper
06-18-2011, 09:04 PM
Although this does nothing to advance the deck, I have a "Fight War Not Wars" tattoo on my arm. Great band, The Feeding of the 5000 is one of my favorite albums of all time.

Your list does look pretty sweet though, do you ever find you are having trouble finding Dream Halls?

Most definitely one of the best of all time.

Finding Dream halls is not to hard with the mass filter and Intuition to back it up. The biggest problem is getting it onto the field in the current meta

pandaman
07-06-2011, 06:00 PM
I was having a play around with an Aluren list the other day but because I don't own Imperial Recruiter it was a bit clunky. I was looking for another combo to put into the control shell (credit goes to the Aluren list that ran Top 16 at GP Providence this year and the Legacy GP last year) I was using and I thought of Dream Halls!

Warning: this is very unconventional and may not work, and in fact may not belong in this thread. Just wanted to get a few thoughts on it, to see if they accord with mine. Since the win-con is Dream Halls. Please tell me if I should start a thread in the Casual forum :P

Maindeck [60]

Control

4 Force of Will
4 Cabal Therapy
4 Gitaxian Probe
4 Coiling Oracle
4 Repeal
4 Brainstorm

Extra creatures

4 Wall of Blossoms
2 Vendillion Clique/Eternal Witness (undecided)

Combo

4 Dream Halls
4 Conflux
1 False Cure
1 Beacon of Immortality

Land

2 Island
2 Forest
1 Swamp
1 Underground Sea
1 Bayou
2 Tropical Island
1 Volcanic Island
4 Misty Rainforest
2 Scalding Tarn
2 Polluted Delta
2 Verdant Catacombs

Sideboard [15]

4 Natural Order
1 Progenitus
1 Dryad Arbor
4 Go for the Throat
3 Firespout
3 Thoughtseize

It's just the Dream Halls combo shoved in to the original control shell.

It is good because:

Cabal Therapy and Gitaxian Probe love each other
You have plenty of creatures to sack to Cabal Therapy
It sees a lot of cards (Coiling Oracle, Wall of Blossoms, Brainstorm and Repeal), which allows you to find the combo quickly
It is a compact combo compared to Aluren (10 cards v 13 cards)
It doesn't have Recruiters in it (completely irrelevant but was a budget consideration)
It grinds really well
It has a transformational sideboard that not may people expect
It can hardcast Dream Halls (always cool)
It can hardcast Dream Halls and Natural Order with only basic lands

It is bad because:

It is strictly slower than the usual Dream Halls shell
It is slower than Aluren
You're trying to hardcast a 5 mana enchantment with double blue
It only runs 20 land (may need more)
You need a Conflux and another card in hand after casting Dream Halls
Dream halls enables hate in their hand that they can play at instant speed that they may not otherwise be able to play (avoidable with Cabal Therapy)

I would like to fit in or try:

Intuition (to find combo or Cabal Therapy). Intuition with Cabal Therapy is quite ridiculous. Maybe -1 Dream Halls -1 Conflux -1 Witness/Clique +3 Intuition?
Lim-Dul's Vault. Good at finding combo. Might not be as good as Intuition
More land

Testing is continuing, for a bit of fun. Please share your thoughts. Brutal or otherwise.

mistercakes
07-06-2011, 06:13 PM
i would recommend fitting show and tell + progenitus in there. it will help sneak out your dream halls as well as just give you an alternate kill. then you can run a 1 of natural order just in case they get rid of your combo piece.

pandaman
07-06-2011, 07:39 PM
I appreciate that Show and Tell and Progenitus are excellent, and Show and Tell gives me an alternate way to get Dream Halls into play. However, the strategy of this deck is different to that of the classic Dream Halls Combo. This deck is built to grind out the Dream Halls by hardcasting it. It's a bit of a different direction that I'm trying to take with the whole approach to getting out the combo.

Someone previously commented that the hardest thing is getting Dream Halls out on the board in the current meta, and I would agree with that. However, the grind strategy doesn't work if you run Show and Tell and Progenitus, because you then don't have the space to fit in the necessary control elements to grind with: Cabal Therapy, Gitaxian Probe, Repeal and the creatures. I've found the big reason this deck actually works sometimes is that Cabal Therapy is excellent at plowing through counters, and by turn 5 (at the earliest, and ideally) you will have cast a couple of creatures, drawn a couple of cards of them, maybe Repealed something to slow the opponent down, Cabal Therapied a couple of times and you will know what is in their hand and whether it is safe to go off, or whether you have to grind some more to find more protection.

If Show and Tell and Progenitus go in you lose that aspect, and you might as well play the standard build with 8 cantrips and no Cabal Therapy, Gitaxian Probe and creatures.

You also have an alternate (albeit slow) kill with Coiling Oracle and Clique/Witness beatdown. I've done it a couple of times, when control decks don't draw their Mishra's Factory.

I'm still not convinced that this grind approach is actually any better than the standard approach either, and would appreciate thoughts on the grind approach for the current meta.

Silent Requiem
07-07-2011, 01:53 AM
The difficulty with any control build is that Jace will just do it better. He helps you maintain control through card dratw, and he is a more compact kill package, leaving you more room for control elements.

While that does not mean that Dream Halls should not run any control elements, these are mostly based around resolving the combo rather than shutting down another player for 5+ turns. By giving up Show & Tell, you are also giving up on one of the strengths of the deck, the difficulty of hating it out.

No, I think that a fast UR build is probably the best build for Halls these days. The obvious improvement would be reducing the size or complexity of the combo package so that more disruption and card filtering can be played. This is the attraction of Storm builds, although they come with their own weaknesses and design limitations. It is also why Hive Mind sees more play than Halls; a very similar deck, but with a much more redundancy.

Dream Halls will see more play when a better card to cheat into play with Dream Halls is printed.

-Silent Requiem

MCulo
08-03-2011, 07:06 PM
We now have Sorin's Vengeance in M12. Requiring only 2 casts of the kill card instead of chaining a long string to win. Spots could be freed up for other cards to flesh the deck out against hate and protect the combo.

menace13
08-03-2011, 09:42 PM
We now have Sorin's Vengeance in M12. Requiring only 2 casts of the kill card instead of chaining a long string to win. Spots could be freed up for other cards to flesh the deck out against hate and protect the combo.
The 2 card kill has been around a long while in the form of False Cure+Beacon and both can be found with Conflux unlike Sorin's Vengeance.

dearleader
08-04-2011, 01:36 AM
You could also play a 1 card kill with Pandemonium as long as you run 2 Progenitus. The point of running Cruel Ultimatum isn't just to combo kill; you have another card to cast off Dream Halls for when you don't have Conflux, and the card also happens to kill. It obviously isn't an ideal combo card, but it's more or less the second best thing to cast immediately after putting Dream Halls into play. This is obviously less of a concern in UR builds.

Hopo
08-04-2011, 03:29 AM
There are two great 2-card wins available (probably even more but these I have used): Beacon of Immortality + False Cure and Progenitus + Time Stretch. Any 3-card combos are worse than those in the maindeck.

caenel
08-04-2011, 03:48 AM
Well, you could always add a third two card, fetchable with Conflux, combo to that list. The list would become:


False Cure + Beacon of Immortality

Instant speed combo that requires targetting the opponent.


Progenitus + Time Stretch

Instant speed combo that does not require targetting an opponent, but is foiled by Moat or Humility.


Magister Sphinx + Hidetsugu's Second Rite or Sorin's Vengeance

Sorcery speed combo that requires targetting the opponent.


I would still say that either not playing a "combo" kill and just using raw card advantage to win (using Cruel Ultimatum and Progenitus) or incorporating the combo kill with False Cure and Beacon of Immortality alongside Progenitus would be the way to go. The Time Stretch-kill is often a win-more and the Magister Sphinx combo's are, at sorcery speed with the same targetting requirements, inferior to the False Cure combo.

Maveric78f
08-04-2011, 04:26 AM
There are two great 2-card wins available (probably even more but these I have used): Beacon of Immortality + False Cure and Progenitus + Time Stretch. Any 3-card combos are worse than those in the maindeck.

Once more, I do not agree with that.

First of all, most DH decks play Show and Tell and thus Progenitus. So that Time Stretch combo (or Pandemonium) is only a 1-card combo in this shell.

Second of all, combos can be more than 2-card but still valuable if their elements are not useless without DH in play. For a long time, I preferred Magister Sphinx + Hellkite*2 because all my combo elements were SnTable.

If you play Ur (which is still the best to my opinion), I would advise to play 4*Progenitus and 4*Burning Wish as your kills (plus 2/3*Conflux obviously). Burning Wish tutors for control cards, Show and Tell, Conflux and Time Stretch.

Hopo
08-04-2011, 06:15 AM
Time Stretch -combo is not win-more, it's just win. You don't even pass the turn. I wouldn't play 2 different combos in maindeck, though, if that's what you meant. Beacon-combo is the strongest in my opinion.