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Thread: [DTW] Bant Survival

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    [DTW] Bant Survival

    Bant Survival

    Table of Contents
    1) Introduction
    2) Constructing the Deck
    -Core Decklist
    -Remaining Options
    -Sideboard Options
    -Sample Decklist
    3) Playing the Deck
    4) Matchup Analysis
    5) Accomplishments
    6) Reading Material
    7) Credits


    Introduction
    Survival of the Fittest was a card heavily played in the early days of Type 1.5 because of the card advantage and tutoring power the two mana enchantment could produce. Decks such as Angry Tradewind Survival, Survival Advantage, Rec Sur, and many other variants were made to abuse it. However, Survival archetypes were pushed aside due to the format gaining new powerful combo decks, another two mana enchantment (Counterbalance), and the format, in general, getting faster. Survival decks had trouble with speed and an over-reliance on Survival due to too many dead slots, narrow creatures, and basically, a whole deck that worked when Survival was in play, but folded if it didn't. The format had veered away from Survival of the Fittest decks, but some recent additions have put it back in the spot light.

    Bant Survival is the new Survival of the Fittest contender that I got started on when trying to incorporate a better late game in the older Threshold decks. I hated the fact that if a control deck could "outlast" me; they usually won with their superior card advantage and more powerful cards. This led me to multiple things like Intuition, Gifts, a Thresh-Landstill hybrid, and most notably, Survival. Survival was obviously the direction I chose to go with due to the printing of some fantastic creatures in recent sets: Noble Hierarch, Rhox War Monk, Vendilion Clique, Qasali Pridemage, Trygon Predator, etc. It was much different from where I started, but it worked nonetheless. From posting this original thread, the deck picked up and got worked on and tweaked continually until it is where you see it today, top 8ing tournaments across the globe.


    Constructing the Deck
    Bant Survival is a GUw Survival of the Fittest deck that utilizes some of the best creatures in the game as offensive and control elements and the most efficient spells in the format. A thing this deck wants to avoid is losing without Survival. It inevitably happens, but it is very important that the deck functions without Survival. Why? Because Survival won't turn up every game, it won't resolve every game, and it won't stick around every game. This deck is exceptionally good at doing that. It relies on the tempo that the inexpensive answers and creatures create to abuse the game-winning card in, Survival of the Fittest or play better without it. With that in mind, it is necessary for the deck to include:

    4 Brainstorm
    4 Swords to Plowshares
    4 Force of Will

    These are the most efficient spells in the colors of Bant. Brainstorm is vital at smoothing out draws, fixing mana, and of course digging for Survival. More often than not, you will be playing Survival-less and having the creatures to play or the spells to cast is important to actually winning the game and Brainstorm brings you into the powerful cards this deck holds. Swords to Plowshares is the best removal spell in the format and handles almost anything. There isn't much to say when you are paying one mana to remove their creature that was 2-3 times more expensive. Force of Will is a free spell that can keep Bant Survival from losing and help resolve Survival and win. It is a necessary evil, but an integral part of the deck. It allows the deck to keep laying down threats and disrupt the opponent, something other Survival builds lack. The deck relies on these cheap cards so that it can allocate resources elsewhere, like playing Survival or any of creatures in the deck and still have protection against combo decks or to protect your investment.

    The creatures are also the most efficient that the colors of Bant have to offer and can answer a wide array of situations like a Survival deck should. Survival should be able to pull you out of things because it is that powerful and if you build the deck right, you should win when it lands. With the recent additions of creatures that are cheaper and more powerful, it gave Survival of the Fittest new tools to put it back as a deck to beat in Legacy. Speed is a big concern for Survival since it is a mana intensive engine and when you are tutoring up expensive answers and beaters, the deck fails to keep up with the format. The colors of Bant have gained the tools to stay in the game and out last the opponent. The necessary creatures are:

    4 Noble Hierarch
    4 Tarmogoyf
    2 Qasali Pridemage
    3 Rhox War Monk
    1 Squee, Goblin Nabob
    1 Loyal Retainers
    1 Iona, Shield of Emeria

    Every deck list should start with this core 16. It has the best acceleration in Noble Hierarch, the most efficient beater in the format in Tarmogoyf, the quickest answer to Artifacts and Enchantments in Qasali Pridemage, the best aggro stopper in Rhox War Monk, the best card advantage engine (when paired with SotF) in Squee, Goblin Nabob, and a game winning combo in Iona/Retainers. The creatures are both tools Survival can grab but also great threats on their own. Something you should consider when building your creature base is; is this a card you would hate to see when drawing it without any other creature or Survival?

    The manabase is pretty simple. This is a Survival deck so green mana is the primary color. The deck may run more blue mana symbols, but the fact that Noble Hierarch can produce blue is very important. The more green mana, the more powerful Survival can be. Blue is the close secondary color and white follows both of those as a splash for Swords and quite a few creatures. With the printing of the Zendikar fetchlands, the manabase became incredibly resilient. All fetches can grab any land in the deck with the exception of one basic which makes Wasteland simple to play around and Moon effects terrible. The manabase should be 18-20 lands. The deck isn't as mana hungry as Survival builds of old and can operate fine on 2-3 lands with Brainstorm (and Ponder if you run it) helping out occasionally to dig for them as well. A common manabase is:

    4 Misty Rainforest
    4 Windswept Heath
    4 Tropical Island
    2 Savannah
    2 Forest
    1 Island
    1 Plains

    This allows for the best color consistency and mana denial protection. Eight fetchlands can get any color in the deck and turns Wasteland, one of the most format defining cards, off. The synergy with Brainstorm is always nice so having a large amount goes well for that combo. The duals are all green because more green producing lands plays better with Survival. A high basic count helps stabilize the mana in the face of all the hate out there. I definitely recommend going up to 19 or 20 lands. I have run 18 fine a few times but the occasional mana screw was happening too much. A Tundra, additional Savannah, or an extra basic Island/Forest is a good option.

    With all of that together, the core decklist is something like this.

    Core Decklist
    4 Misty Rainforest
    4 Windswept Heath
    4 Tropical Island
    2 Savannah
    2 Forest
    1 Island
    1 Plains

    4 Noble Hierarch
    4 Tarmogoyf
    2 Qasali Pridemage
    3 Rhox War Monk
    1 Squee, Goblin Nabob
    1 Loyal Retainers
    1 Iona, Shield of Emeria

    4 Brainstorm
    4 Swords to Plowshares
    4 Force of Will

    I am positive I am forgetting something though... Oh yeah...

    4 Survival of the Fittest

    I cringe when I see builds running less than four. This is the focal point of the deck and it is what makes the deck tick. SotF is a win if left unchecked and left alone to acquire card advantage or the game winning combo. Run four.


    Remaining Options
    That is 49 cards. The remaining 11 can go to a variety of cards for different matchups or personal play style. By that, I mean the deck can be played a few different ways. Adding more creatures to lean on the aggressor side or playing some more counters to play more as a controlling deck. Both can depend on the meta. Here are a few options for the remaining 11 slots.

    19th Land – This should either go to a third Savannah or a Tundra. 19 lands gives a more stable mana base and can help with consistency if you play with a higher curve with more three casting cost creatures. It can also be beneficial in a meta with Pox, Sui Black, Eva Green, Canadian Threshold, Loam, etc decks.

    Jace, the Mind Sculptor – It has been interesting watching this card develop in people’s minds. Now that most blue decks are packing 2-4, running him is becoming more appealing. For one, he can win the game on his own and is just a powerful card. The second reason to run him is to have an answer for your opponents.

    Ponder – A supplementary card to Brainstorm. A weaker version of Brainstorm, but has all the same pros as it does. It improves consistency, smoothens draws, and is a great way to dig out Survival or other answers.

    Spell Snare – An additional counter helps the deck play more controlling against combo and aggro decks. Spell Snare stops a large number of Legacy staples as well as common cards that really hurt Bant Survival. It is unable to hit many powerful cards that can come early or later in the game, though.

    Spell Pierce – Another narrow counter, like Spell Snare, but much more effective at resolving Survival and stopping cards like Sensei’s Divining Top and Aether Vial. Sadly, it can’t hit creatures which really limits its use against some decks.

    Daze – It can hit a broader number of cards than Spell Snare or Spell Pierce and allows the deck to tap out and still have protection/disruption available like Force of Will. The problem is that it can set the deck back on tempo and it ends up being dead later on in the game.

    Spellstutter Sprite – A card that has fallen out of favor recently because it is sometimes too slow to stop things you need it to like Aether Vial or Sensei’s Divining Top and it requires leaving mana open in a deck that wants to play its creatures aggressively. It is still a quality card that is great versus ANT, Zoo, Canadian Thresh, and any deck that has plenty of cheap cards. Sprite is a fantastic target for Survival to stop burn spells, removal, cantrips, and to lock up the game with multiple faeries in play.

    Vendilion Clique – Clique is a card that does “it” for the deck in multiple ways. It is never truly bad because it is a solid beater that can jump in the way of an attacker for the kill or fly over the stand-offs. Against combo, it is a great disruption piece and beater and against control, flashing it in at the end of their turn can leave the path open for Tarmogoyf or Survival.

    Trygon Predator – Qasali Pridemage does the same thing, right? Not really. Trygon Predator is great versus Stax and Enchantress as well as being a slow answer to the random artifacts and enchantments that Qasali Pridemage can hit. Predator is a good choice to diversify the curve to get around Counterbalance easier or a Chalice at two. It’s an effective card in specific situations and decent in others while also being a good beater with evasion.

    Eternal Witness – A staple in Survival decks for years because it can get back that fallen Survival. Witness is a card to tutor up when you suspect Survival could be blown or to get back a Swords for that Lord of Atlantis or to get back a Tarmogoyf. A nice piece of insurance that is never terrible when drawn.

    Kira, Great Glass-Spinner – Kira is an effective answer to the rise of Zoo and Lands as well as being decent against anything with targeted removal. It is valuable as a one of to grab and lock up the game.

    Rafiq, of the Many – The original finisher because it can act as a pseudo Anger, coming out of nowhere and deal large amounts of damage. It can make any creature deal very large amounts and with Rhox, it can double the life gain. It has mostly been phased out, since having the five mana to pitch a creature and play Rafiq, is probably better off going towards Iona. It may still have a place because it does interact well with Rhox, is a legend and therefore a target for Retainers if the win is there or Iona is unavailable, and is not a bad draw.

    Wonder – A card that has also mostly been phased out since Iona is the main finisher and has flying. Wonder is great at making the army fly over the ground so that Rhox War Monks can gain life untouched, or a Tarmogoyf can fly over. It has been removed because slots are limited and when your finisher has flying, it becomes redundant, but still holds value when the numbers of Rhox War Monks, Tarmogoyfs, etc go up.

    Sower of Temptation – As a one of, it gives the deck an out to big huge monsters that Goyfs can’t matchup against. It can swing games if the opponent has his/her pants down, but it is vulnerable without something like CounterTop backing it up.

    Meddling Mage – Disruption in the form of creatures is something this deck loves. Obviously, other “hate bears” like Gaddock Teeg and Ethersworn Canonist are anti-synergistic with the deck, so Meddling Mage is the only main deck option. Builds running this have it in the Spell Snare/Daze/Spell Pierce slot, usually as a three to four of. It is much more versatile and effective but it is much slower.

    Jotun Grunt – Most people hate the card in general because when you think about it, it sucks. A creature that is smaller than Tarmogoyf with an expiration date? Sucks. In reality, it is an efficient beater that can be used to recycle lost cards like tutored creatures or as a way to hate on graveyard dependent decks.


    Sideboard Options
    Playing Survival means you are lucky when it comes to sideboarding. Most of the matchups are even and favorable with very few terrible matchups. This makes sideboarding very good because you can board to beat anything based on what you expect to see. Most things in your sideboard will be cards to improve matchups from even to favorable.

    The Bant colors have a lot to offer in terms of hate cards, general answers, and good disruption. To make your sideboard, you should really have a good idea of what you expect to see. If you expect a lot of combo, having Spell Pierce and hate bears like Meddling Mage, Gaddock Teeg, or Ethersworn Canonist makes the matchup very easy. Control? Krosan Grips, Genesis, Spell Pierce, hate bears, and maybe even graveyard hate can be beneficial. Aggro? Kitchen Finks, Umezawa’s Jitte, Propaganda/Ghostly Prison and Path to Exile are great answers to swarms and fast rushes. There are limitless options but coming up with the right combination can make or break your tournament.

    I’ll cover most of the options to just get everything out there so that the supplies are there to put the sideboard together.

    Krosan Grip – Qasali Pridemage and Trygon Predator are great answers, but some of the time they aren’t enough. They don’t do it against Counterbalance some of the time, they are counter-able, Humility eats them alive, etc. Having a reliable answer to these things as well as others is important.

    Path to Exile – It supplements Swords well and is needed versus faster aggro decks like Zoo and Goblins to hold off the initial rush. Path is also invaluable against Merfolk at picking off the Lords.

    Ghostly Prison/Propaganda – Swarms hurt the deck a lot since you need Survival or you lose. Tribal decks can overrun Bant Survival easily, so having a nice way to stall until you can stabilize with the better threats is a good way to win. The taxing effects are also amazing at Ichorid and almost make it impossible for them to win. The right one to run is difficult to say; blue is easier to cast, but can be hit by REB and white is harder to cast. A split might be the best if run.

    Umezawa’s Jitte – One of the best aggro hate cards because it can create card advantage, gain life, and pump your dude to finish the game faster. Jitte is really effective in this deck because of all the flying guys as well.

    Hydroblast/Blue Elemental Blast – Still very good against Goblins at countering Ringleader, Matron, and Goblin Warchief and decks with burn. However, with Zoo becoming less reliant on red with the cutting of some to all of its red creatures, it is less effective against them.

    Tormod’s Crypt – General graveyard hate that usually will go alongside a Faerie Macabre or two. In order to beat Ichorid consistently, this is a necessity or they will overrun you with their larger “hand”. Better than Relic of Progenitus because it doesn’t hurt the Survival engine or Tarmogoyf and is free.

    Pithing Needle – A versatile and cheap card that answers problems like Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Thopter Foundry, Aether Vial, Wasteland, Rishadan Port, Mutavault, Engineered Explosives, Mother of Runes, and many other things that could give the deck fits.

    Cold-Eyed Selkie – Blue is the most played color in the format by a mile and this card is great against all of them. Protecting him from removal against a blue deck and allowing him to hit once will usually garner you 2-3 cards and just puts you far ahead.

    Faerie Macabre – As mentioned above, Faerie Macabre is used in Survival as a tutor-able way to get rid of Loam, Reanimator targets, Ichorids, etc at instant speed. Running one to two is a good idea.

    Genesis – In a heavy board control metagame, Genesis provides inevitability and card advantage. Control decks cannot beat you if all your threats keep coming back for more. It is mana intensive and this deck is favorable against decks like Landstill, Truffle Shuffle, Quinn, etc so it may not be worth the one slot.

    Gaddock Teeg – Another hate bear like Meddling Mage that can shut down combo and control. It turns off Force of Will, however, and modern lists of ANT have an easy out to him. Against control, it still is a beating.

    Ethersworn Canonist – The best hate bear against combo because they can’t win with it in play and they have to jump through major hoops to remove it. It has no other applications which makes it a narrow sideboard card.

    Kitchen Finks – Rhox War Monk should probably be played as a four of in your 75 cards so Kitchen Finks is a great supplement to the rhino. It often takes out two goblins while gaining four life or take down a Nacatl, block another, and gain four life.

    Llawan, Cephalid Empress – Merfolk is played in heavy numbers so one hate card isn’t too much to ask for. If this resolves against them, you win. It also is an amazing answer to Progenitus.

    Emrakul, the Aeons Torn – The initial thought is that this is there for Loyal Retainers, but it is also amazing protection against graveyard hate as well. It can also recycle your creatures for Survival to keep churning them out. But of course you can still cheat it into play with Loyal Retainers by having Retainers in play, discarding him, put his trigger on the stack, and sacrifice Retainers to reanimate him. He’s great at coming in against Enchantress and control as a means to wipe their board.

    Spore Frog – With Genesis or Emrakul this can set up a nice lock versus aggro. Without it, it fogs for a turn and really isn’t worth it. The two need to be run in combination. The lock is easily breakable with an instant removal spell, however. It is fantastic against Ichorid, though.

    Loaming Shaman – Graveyard hate attached to a tutor so you can grab it with Survival. This is much more effective than Faerie Macabre when the opponent has already dredged his deck or if Loam has pulled plenty of things into its yard. Shaman is also effective at, like Jotun Grunt, recycling cards back into the deck.


    Sample Decklist
    My decklist has been constantly changing since the day I made it. Many slots regularly change because of trying to adapt to the meta, new cards, or optimization. In all the tournaments I have been to and done well, I think every list has been slightly different. That is the beauty of Bant Survival. Without further ado, here is my list.

    Bant Survival
    By Jak.
    4 Misty Rainforest
    4 Windswept Heath
    4 Tropical Island
    2 Savannah
    1 Tundra
    2 Forest
    1 Island
    1 Plains

    4 Survival of the Fittest
    4 Brainstorm
    4 Swords to Plowshares
    4 Force of Will

    4 Noble Hierarch
    4 Tarmogoyf
    3 Meddling Mage
    2 Qasali Pridemage
    4 Rhox War Monk
    2 Vendilion Clique
    1 Trygon Predator
    1 Wonder
    1 Squee, Goblin Nabob
    1 Loyal Retainers
    1 Iona, Shield of Emeria

    1 Flex Slot

    Sideboard
    3 Spell Pierce
    3 Path to Exile
    2 Umezawa’s Jitte
    2 Pithing Needle
    2 Krosan Grip
    1 Faerie Macabre
    1 Kira, Great Glass-Spinner
    1 Llawan, Cephalid Empress

    Matchups
    Zoo
    Pre-board: Zoo can get out to a very fast start so mitigating the life loss is very important until you can stick a Rhox War Monk or stabilize at all. The creatures you want to keep off the table are Grim Lavamancer, because it can take down every creature in the deck with exception of Tarmogoyf and RWM, and Knight of the Reliquary because it is bigger than everything. The matchup gets better for us as the turns go by, so lasting until the late game is key.

    -4 Force of Will
    -2 Vendilion Clique

    +3 Path to Exile
    +2 Umezawa’s Jitte
    +1 Kira, Great Glass-Spinner

    Force of Will is a fast answer to cards like Steppe Lynx and Wild Nacatl, but the card disadvantage and life loss isn’t worth it, and going down on cards that early is likely to not win you the game. Sideboarding also takes too many blue cards out of the deck to effectively have Force + blue card. Vendilion Clique is lackluster because of how weak it is defensively and it costs three. Path to Exile comes in as a quick answer to their fast beaters and as a way to get rid of their larger guys later on. Umezawa’s Jitte is the card advantage you want against them, eliminating multiple threats, countering their burn, and pumping our dudes to sizes bigger than theirs. Kira turns off their removal or makes it straight card disadvantage.

    Post-board: The deck becomes packed with removal to slow them down. Jitte and Survival are too many targets for Grip as long as you can keep Qasali Pridemage from hitting one of them. Their clock becomes a lot slower when they sideboard hate in for Survival and with the deck having more cheap removal. It is a lot easier to setup, stick a few creatures, pick off their important ones, and take the advantage.

    Merfolk
    Pre-board: Merfolk beats you by hindering you enough so that it can drop Lord of Atlantis and have unblockable dudes. Fetching basics helps prevent this to negate their Wastelands. Most builds don’t run Stifle, but it is still wise to be careful of it and fetch at opportune times (i.e. when they are tapped out after Vial and end of their turn so that they have to leave mana open through their turn). Getting enough lands into play is not hard so play around Daze, which leaves them with only Force to counter all of your better cards. Swords, counter, or do whatever to keep Lord of Atlantis off the table. Doing all of this is hard when they have the disruption, the protection from Vial, and the card advantage from Standstill, but as long as you keep their weenies tiny they can’t do much.

    -3 Meddling Mage

    +3 Path to Exile
    +2 Umezawa’s Jitte
    +1 Llawan

    Path to Exile is great at picking off their Lords, Jitte can stop their swarms and pick off their dudes, and Llawan is the game breaker against them. Most of the cards in the deck are fine against Merfolk. Nothing is really dead so you need to cut cards that don’t do much for you. The deck can still function without the slight acceleration and mana fixing of Noble Hierarch
    Last edited by Jak; 08-05-2010 at 07:43 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Surviving Bant

    Hey, nice idea! The main reason I try to build this is that I want to play Noble Hierarch in Legacy.

    About deck: I think you can cut Gigapede. You already have Genesis for lategame.

    Another thing to do is to move Gaddock Teeg in sideboard. You already have 8 counterspells and Survival => Meddling Mage for combo and problematic cards Game 1. If you meta is full of aggro/burn, put 2-d Rhox War Monk of Kitchen Finks (Monk I think 'cause he pitches to FoW). In my meta 2-d Trygon Predator is the right guy. The new Qasali Pridemage would be great too.

    I also think you need more creatures for your survival plan. I'd cut Ponders, but the problem is that you also want blue cards for FoW. The idea was to run 2 Ninja of the Deep Hours, but sadly it means you want Birds of Paradise instead of Noble Hierarch (well, I'll try this way, but I'm not sure it'll be good)

    My crazy tech here is Oriss, Samite Guardian or Linessa, Zephyr Mage (better 'cause she's blue and has better first ability) to kick opponent off balance with Genesis-recovering Grandeur.

    Honestly I don't like Daze here 'cause survival is very mana-intensive. The option is to run Stifles (as good as Daze against ANT), 1-2 Dreadnoughts and Trinket Mage+small toolbox. Or just run more creatures (Spellstuller Sprite + more faeries?).

    I never run less than 21 land in decks with Survival that can't cheat a lot of mana (like lists with Vial or Survival Elves). 1 Dryad Arbor must be somewhere here, but with FoW restrictions it's hard to find what to cut.

    That's all for now. I hope my ideas will help!

  3. #3
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    Waikiki's Avatar
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    Re: Surviving Bant

    Hi Jak,

    I've been playing alot with UGW survival allready and can tell you it's really strong! Mt first tournament with the deck brought me to a 9th place (52 players)

    My matchups:

    dredge 0-2 (didn't anticipate dredge decks only 2 in the field so had no sb for it)
    ugb dreadstill 2-0
    43 land 1-1 maze of ith etc takes alot of time :(
    nassif list 2-0
    Nassif list 2-0
    elves survival 2-0


    Overal the update list looks like:

    // Deck file for Magic Workstation (http://www.magicworkstation.com)

    // Lands
    4 [A] Tropical Island
    4 [B] Savannah
    4 [ON] Windswept Heath
    4 [ON] Flooded Strand
    1 [US] Forest (4)
    1 [A] Tundra
    1 [OD] Island (2)

    // Creatures
    1 [MM] Squee, Goblin Nabob
    1 [JU] Genesis
    4 [FUT] Tarmogoyf
    4 [CFX] Noble Hierarch
    1 [DIS] Trygon Predator
    1 [ALA] Rhox War Monk
    1 [OD] Mystic Enforcer
    3 [LRW] Spellstutter Sprite
    1 [FD] Eternal Witness
    1 [LRW] Sower of Temptation
    2 [MOR] Vendilion Clique
    1 [FUT] Venser, Shaper Savant

    // Spells
    3 [EX] Survival of the Fittest
    4 [MM] Brainstorm
    4 [B] Swords to Plowshares
    3 [NE] Daze
    4 [AL] Force of Will
    2 [CHK] Sensei's Divining Top

    // Sideboard
    SB: 3 [PS] Meddling Mage
    SB: 3 [TSP] Krosan Grip
    SB: 4 [IA] Hydroblast
    SB: 1 [BOK] Kami of False Hope
    SB: 3 [VI] Natural Order
    SB: 1 [CFX] Progenitus

    The sb switch to natural order progenitus is reallly something people don't expect.

    The faerie package is really really really awesome! sprites are tutoracle stp protection and later in the game even counterspells.

    My favorite play is T1 hierarch T2,5 flash clique for removal and hit for 4 in your own turn.

    Mystic enforcer was one of my testslots but he has won me so many games that im not going to cut it.

    The open slots are:

    rhox war monk
    venser
    eternal witness. yes she hasn't been of any use so far. Im just scared of cutting and untill the next set I do not have anything to replace it with.

    SB:

    The transformational sb progenitus NO.
    Kami of the false hope. Good against elves survival and ichorid(even agains progenitus).
    Hyrdroblast. Goblins and dragon stompy still need some extra fighting. Could be path to exile, but this can get cast from a basic land.

    MM vs combo and aggro loam. Love em.
    Krosan grip doesn't need explanation.

    Cards im looking forward to:
    The new WG exalted disenchant creature !

    I hope we could tune this deck a little more cause it's very competetive.

    Ohw and I called the deck b0b0'survival due to a inside joke.
    But Bant survival will do I guess
    Team R&D

  4. #4
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    THEchubbymuffin's Avatar
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    Re: Surviving Bant

    Waikiki, wouldn't spore frog be better than kami?

  5. #5
    Survivalist
    Waikiki's Avatar
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    Re: Surviving Bant

    I couldn't find one in my craploads of cards :(
    Team R&D

  6. #6

    Re: Surviving Bant

    I built a similar list a while ago with some succes

    Manabase 20
    5 forest
    4 windswepth heath
    4 wooded foothills
    4 tropical island
    3 savannah

    creatures 22
    4 noble hierarch
    4 tarmogoyf
    4 spellstutter sprite
    2 kitchen finks
    1 gilded drake
    1 tradewind rider
    1 Rafiq of the many
    1 genesis
    1 squee, goblin nabob
    1 ethersworn canonist
    1 eternal witness
    1 harmonic sliver

    instants 12
    4 force of will
    4 brainstorm
    4 swords to plowshares
    2 Bant Charm

    enchantments 4
    4 survival of the fittest


    Side

    4x Krosan grip
    3x Blue elemental blast
    2x Gaddock Teeg
    1x Ethersworn Cannonist
    3x Relic of Progenitus
    2x Sower of Temptation


    I buit this deck when Rafiq was first released. I thought he could be breakable. With the printing of Hoble Hierarch, the deck just got better, Hierarch became my n°1 survival target. With a goyf in play an 2 hierarchs, one could wreak havoc.
    Bant charm was an experiment and in my limited testing it came out quite good.
    Rafiq is here pure for kill reasons, having a spellstutter sprite an a rafiq in play: that's 4 damage by a flying 1/1, rafiq himself beats for 8, not to speak about goyfs.

    I based my build on other ATS builds, but the tradewind rider and the gilded drake will probably be cut for witness or ponder (in need of blue cards).
    Currently playing and testing:
    Faerie Stompy
    Bant Survival
    UW Tempo
    Zoo

  7. #7
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    Re: Surviving Bant

    This is what I've been playing for a while. I, too, am of the opinion that Daze is pretty bad in the deck and that Sprite is really solid. Moreover, I think it is possible to fit Counterbalance in the deck with good effects - for example, you have much less need of lifegainers or combo hate.

    4 Windswept Heath
    4 Flooded Strand
    1 Polluted Delta
    4 Tropical Island
    3 Tundra
    1 Savannah
    1 Plains
    1 Dust Bowl

    4 Noble Hierarch
    4 Tarmogoyf
    4 Spellstutter Sprite
    3 Knight of the Reliquary -> here working as just a Doran stand-in, might turn into Wisescale Sage
    2 Vendilion Clique
    1 Venser, Shaper Savant -> may turn into Qasali Pridemage
    1 Sower of Temptation
    1 Squee, Goblin Nabob

    4 Force of Will
    4 Brainstorm
    4 Sensei's Divining Top
    4 Counterbalance
    3 Survival of the Fittest
    2 Swords to Plowshares

    Sideboard
    2 Swords to Plowshares
    1 Condemn
    2 Krosan Grip
    3 Enlightened Tutor
    2 Tormod's Crypt
    1 Aura Fracture
    1 Threads of Disloyalty
    1 Ethersworn Canonist
    1 Genesis
    1 Eternal Witness
    YOU'RE GIVING ME A TIME MACHINE IN ORDER TO TREAT MY SLEEP DISORDER.

  8. #8
    Survivalist
    Waikiki's Avatar
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    Re: Surviving Bant

    imo CB doesn't really fit into the deck. Survival needs alot of mana and so does CB. Im not sold on it.

    At least not with the playstyle I use.
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  9. #9
    Plays green decks
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    Re: Surviving Bant

    Quote Originally Posted by Waikiki View Post
    imo CB doesn't really fit into the deck. Survival needs alot of mana and so does CB. Im not sold on it.

    At least not with the playstyle I use.
    I sort of agree. Counterbalance is good in any deck with a curve for it, but here it seems to take away from what the goal is. IMO the goal is to play aggro with creatures using a ridiculous CA engine. It also controls the board using free counters and good answer creatures.

    However, that is what I am trying to mold the deck into and using CB is another good route to go.

    Currently, I am trying to find some creature removal that is tutor-able. The only things worth considering are Masticore and Intrepid Hero... There isn't anything like Shriekmaw. However, we still have Sower or Gilded Drake.

  10. #10
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    Re: Surviving Bant

    Well since everyone is psoting their pet UGW survival deck here is mine. It tok top 8 at a 39 person tournament. Basically it cuts out as many of the crappy toolbox creatures as it can and mostly uses survival for a card advantage engine to just spit out goyfs every turn.

    4 Tropical Island
    2 Tundra
    1 Savannah
    1 Forest
    1 Island
    4 Windswept heath
    4 Flooded Strand
    1 Polluted Delta
    4 Sensei's Divining Top
    4 Ponder
    4 Brainstorm
    4 Swords to Plowshares
    4 Counterbalance
    4 Daze
    3 Survival of the Fittest
    4 Tarmogoyf
    2 Trigon Predator
    2 Eternal Witness
    1 Squee Goblin Nabob
    2 Mystic Enforcer
    4 Force of will

    SB:
    4 blue elemental blast
    4 Tormod's crypt
    4 Krosan grip
    1 Survival of the fittest
    1 Genesis
    1 Fairie macabre

  11. #11

    Re: Surviving Bant

    15 creatures, are you sure that's enough to make the engine running? I have some trouble playing 18 creatures + you don't have genesis in the main. So my feeling is that the first creature you pitch to your survival to get squee is a lost critter.

    I'd also strongly suggest to play spellstutter sprite over daze. In 90% of the cases the sprite will be a hardcounter + it's survivalable (is that a word?), witch comes in handy too when you don't have another blue card in your hand to pitch for force of will.
    Currently playing and testing:
    Faerie Stompy
    Bant Survival
    UW Tempo
    Zoo

  12. #12
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    Re: [Deck] Surviving Bant

    I have been testing this deck and I can definately see potential in it. Even if it is not the best build I would play it because it is fun. This list is not optimized at all I will be testing it though to see what works.

    // Lands
    4 Tropical Island
    4 Savannah
    4 Windswept Heath
    4 Flooded Strand
    3 Forest
    1 Tundra
    1 Island

    // Creatures
    2 Vendilion Clique
    1 Venser, Shaper Savant
    1 Squee, Goblin Nabob
    1 Eternal Witness
    4 Tarmogoyf
    4 Noble Hierarch
    1 Trygon Predator
    1 Mystic Enforcer
    4 Spellstutter Sprite
    1 Meddling Mage
    1 Wonder
    1 Troll Ascetic

    // Spells
    4 Survival of the Fittest
    3 Brainstorm
    4 Swords to Plowshares
    4 Force of Will
    2 Umezawa's Jitte

    // Sideboard
    4 Krosan Grip
    2 Sower of Temptation
    2 Meddling Mage
    1 Faerie Macabre
    1 Spore Frog
    1 Harmonic Sliver
    1 Ethersworn Canonist
    1 Kataki, War's Wage
    1 Aven Mindcensor
    1 Genesis

    Some notes that I am testing.

    Maindeck
    Land count - I felt that I often was stuck with too few of mana and was too dependent on NH's so I am trying 21. Will probably cut to 20.

    Umezawa's Jitte - I don't think this will be necessary as we use repeated Goyfs to stop aggro, and Sprites to stop burn. But I just want to test it.

    Wonder - Even though most of our creatures are flying already. I think that this one card should win a couple games where my opponent thinks they can chump my goyfs.

    Troll Ascetic - Nice trick with Jitte, just testing, and will cut if Jitte fails.

    Sideboard

    Mostly highlander to see what I side in. Explaining some strange picks.

    Genesis - Most match ups squee is all we need.
    Spore Frog - Saw the white one in Waikiki's SB. 1 mana combo stopper. Nice with Genesis.

    Harmonic Sliver - Alara Reborn is not legal yet I think. Will be Qasali.

    Aven Mindcensor - This one is what I want to test most. Fetches, Tutors, CIP abilities are all affected by this. Also I lost a game to a janky Prog deck earlier. I hold grudges sometimes.

    Testing will be done on MWS so results should be inaccurate, but who expects anything more?

    If anybody thinks some of these ideas are good let me know, because I am not good at deckbuilding, and want to see where I suck.

  13. #13
    (previously Metalwalker)
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    Re: [Deck] Surviving Bant

    This is my list:
    Dark Bant Survival

    Lands: 19
    3 Tropical Island
    2 Underground Sea
    2 Tundra
    1 Savannah
    1 Forest
    1 Swamp
    1 Island
    2 Windswept Heath
    3 Flooded Strand
    3 Polluted Delta

    Cantrips: 10
    3 Sensei's Divining Top
    3 Ponder
    4 Brainstorm

    Removal/Counter: 11
    3 Swords to Plowshares
    4 Daze
    4 Force of Will

    "Vanilla Creatures": 13
    4 Noble Hierach
    4 Tarmogoyf
    3 Dark Confidant
    2 Vendillion Clique

    Engine+Package: 7
    3 Survival of the Fittest
    1 Shriekmaw
    1 Trygon Predator
    1 Genesis
    1 Squee Goblin Nabob


    SB: (needs tweaking)
    1 Ethersworn Canonist
    1 Meddling Mage
    2 Trygon Predator
    1 Sower of Temptation
    1 Quasali Pridemage
    3 Engineered Plague
    3 Duress
    3 Krosan Grip


    Black gives access to Bob + Genesis/Shriekmaw recursion, and access to Plague in the board against tribal decks (Merfolks, Elves, Goblins). Duress gives a good MU against combo and opposing CB.

    (EDIT: I'm shaky on the Manabase against moon effects, so I upped it to 19 lands, running 3 bobs instead of 4, akin to old-school Not-Quite-Survival builds. I'm not too sold on Sprite although I got owned by her when playing against Bant Survival. She seems good if you can chain up to 2 (with or without help from Survival). I would rather play Daze/Spell Snare since you want to avoid losing to CB lock early, and Daze gives you an edge against many decks.)


    If I ran UGW Bant instead of 4c Dark Bant, I might go with:


    17 Lands
    2 Academy Ruins

    4 Noble Hierach
    4 Goyfs
    2 Trinket Mage
    2 Vendillion Clique

    3 Survival of the Fittest
    1 Genesis
    1 Eternal Witness
    1 Squee

    4 Swords to Plowshares
    1 Engineered Explosives
    4 Force of Will
    4 Counterbalance

    4 Brainstorm
    3 Ponder
    3 Sensei's Divning Top

    Some sort of Brassman NLU Survival mix. EE with Witness + Genesis + Ruins is pretty good lock even if we destroyed our own Survival. I personally dislike CB-Top in Survival Bant, but I don't know what's the best shell.

    Natural Order Bant Survival is interesting due to acceleration with Hierach and synergy with Survival + Progenitus, although we have trouble hitting 4 mana and avoiding daze effects. I might play with 2 Natural Order + 1 Dryad Arbor + 1 Progenitus, but I'm sure that list will involve 20 lands and some form of control with Daze/Spell Snare/CB etc.

    Clique + Hierach is really a house: T1 Hierach, T2 clique disrupt, T3 swing for 4 + backed by countermagic.

  14. #14
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    Re: [Deck] Surviving Bant

    @ crz
    Have you tried spellstutter sprite? From what I have experienced, an active survival and sprites can be gg for an opponent. They are pretty good on their own aswell. Countering a 1cc card is good, but the fact that it flies not that bad with heirarchs.

    Point of my post. Sprites are the shizz.

  15. #15
    Plays green decks
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    Re: [Deck] Surviving Bant

    4 Windswept Heath
    4 Flooded Strand
    4 Tropical Island
    2 Savannah
    2 Tundra
    2 Forest
    2 Island

    4 Survival of the Fittest
    4 Brainstorm
    2 Ponder
    4 Force of Will
    4 Swords to Plowshares

    4 Noble Hierarch
    4 Tarmogoyf
    4 Spellstutter Sprite
    2 Vendilion Clique
    2 Sower of Temptation
    1 Trygon Predator
    1 Eternal Witness
    1 Rhox War Monk
    1 Big Beater Slot (Quagnoth, Gigapede, Morphling)
    1 Genesis
    1 Squee
    1 Wonder

    SB
    4 Krosan Grip
    2 Meddling Mage
    3 Back to Basics
    4 Hydroblast
    2 Rhox War Monk

    This is what I have been working with. I'm trying to cut it down but I have been really liking everything. SB is geared towards control, aggro-control, and aggro. I probably should add stuff for Ichorid and TES. Maybe Chants and Crypts, but I never see those on MWS. I also may want to add more Sowers since they are so ridiculously good with most UG decks looking like they are adding 4 Coatls.

  16. #16
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    Re: [Deck] Surviving Bant

    Nice to see you're liking the faery pack I suggested.
    I think wonder isn't needed since most creatures you play allready got flying.

    Myself am even trying to go up to 3 cliques. they are really good.
    Team R&D

  17. #17
    Plays green decks
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    Re: [Deck] Surviving Bant

    Quote Originally Posted by Waikiki View Post
    Nice to see you're liking the faery pack I suggested.
    I think wonder isn't needed since most creatures you play allready got flying.

    Myself am even trying to go up to 3 cliques. they are really good.
    Yeah, I love the StP protection. It also just seemed better than Daze in many aspects.

    Wonder is really there to make Goyfs fly. Gets over Goblins, other Goyfs, Coatls, etc. I guess it is the weakest slot. I'll try cutting it.

    I really want to incorporate a few things MD.

    -Additional land
    -Wickerbough Elder
    -Meddling Mage
    -Gaddock Teeg

    Finding room is the hard part. I am pretty sure I want to add the additional land so I can get the mana I need to activate Survival and play a Sower if I have to.

    I'm going to try...

    -1 Wonder
    -2 Ponder (Unsure...)

    +1 Breeding Pool
    +1 Wickerbough Elder
    +1 Vendilion Clique

    It ends up still being at 62 which I want to at least get down to 61.

    Does anyone have any ideas for the big beater slot? Something that can come down and being larger than Goyf, Coatl, and Tombstalker, while hopefully having evasion or be hard to remove. Gigapede was my first choice since it is sooo hard to remove but I hate that it doesn't have evasion or a better toughness. Any ideas?

  18. #18
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    Re: [Deck] Surviving Bant

    I use mystic enforcer as the big beater slot. I would rather run the pridemage because his exalted works great with the faeries. Yes its weaker vs CB but it's way faster. I do not like to have that many 4cc slots in the deck I run 19 lands +4 hierarch.
    Team R&D

  19. #19
    Plays green decks
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    Re: [Deck] Surviving Bant

    Quote Originally Posted by Waikiki View Post
    I use mystic enforcer as the big beater slot. I would rather run the pridemage because his exalted works great with the faeries. Yes its weaker vs CB but it's way faster. I do not like to have that many 4cc slots in the deck I run 19 lands +4 hierarch.
    This is true. I do like the Pridemage dude so running a few will go well with the quasi Exalted theme. Mystic Enforcer is also a favorite so that will at least be tried but I want to see how this (list at bottom) works.

    Here is what I have going on to keep it most up to date.

    4 Windswept Heath
    4 Flooded Strand
    4 Tropical Island
    2 Savannah
    2 Tundra
    2 Forest
    2 Island

    4 Survival of the Fittest
    4 Brainstorm
    4 Force of Will
    4 Swords to Plowshares

    4 Noble Hierarch
    4 Tarmogoyf
    4 Spellstutter Sprite
    3 Vendilion Clique
    3 Quasali Pridemage
    2 Sower of Temptation
    1 Trygon Predator
    1 Eternal Witness
    1 Rhox War Monk
    1 Genesis
    1 Squee

    SB
    3 Krosan Grip
    3 Meddling Mage
    2 Gaddock Teeg
    2 Back to Basics
    3 Hydroblast
    2 Rhox War Monk

    It Quasali ends up being better as a one of, then I would replace the two with an Enforcer. I also want to keep trying Wonder so that will be thrown into testing too. There is nothing like Flying Goyfs that get pumped from Exalted or Flying, Lifelinked, and Pumped War Monks.

  20. #20
    Plays green decks
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    Re: [Deck] Surviving Bant

    I finally had time to test this some more. Not a ton, just a bit more since I downloaded ARB. I do like the Pridemages since Exalted kicks ass but I realized that 3 was too many. Unless I need to destroy something, I won't tutor for them and they usually get pitched to Survival if I one in hand. They are still effective and I enjoyed it as a two of. Updated list...

    // Lands
    4 [ON] Windswept Heath
    4 [ON] Flooded Strand
    4 [A] Tropical Island
    2 [R] Savannah
    2 [5E] Island (3)
    2 [9E] Forest (3)
    2 [R] Tundra
    1 [DIS] Breeding Pool

    // Creatures
    4 [LRW] Spellstutter Sprite
    1 [FD] Eternal Witness
    1 [ALA] Rhox War Monk
    2 [MOR] Vendilion Clique
    4 [CFX] Noble Hierarch
    1 [MM] Squee, Goblin Nabob
    1 [JU] Genesis
    1 [DIS] Trygon Predator
    2 [LRW] Sower of Temptation
    4 [FUT] Tarmogoyf
    1 [OD] Mystic Enforcer
    2 [ARB] Qasali Pridemage

    // Spells
    4 [MM] Brainstorm
    4 [AL] Force of Will
    4 [EX] Survival of the Fittest
    4 [IA] Swords to Plowshares

    // Sideboard
    SB: 2 [ALA] Rhox War Monk
    SB: 4 [PS] Meddling Mage
    SB: 2 [US] Back to Basics
    SB: 4 [TSP] Krosan Grip
    SB: 3 [IA] Hydroblast

    21 lands felt great. The deck has a low curve, but it is still very mana hungry and I never disliked drawing lands. I cut it down to 2 Cliques since I needed the room for an Enforcer. I'm unsure of the move since I have barely had time to test. I may cut a Pridemage to get the other back in since it is better if you draw it. Enforcer was good. I needed something that I could tutor up and be big and he was it.

    I really only played against aggro. Sprites helped a bit by countering a a couple burn spells. Hierarch kicked ass. I love the card. I won soooo many Goyf wars and it gave me the mana I needed several times. Just awesome. The SB rocked and the games were a breeze. Tutoring up War Monks was broken. Sowers were okay but in a MU like Zoo they just get burned out so I boarded those out a lot versus aggro.

    Basically, I am really happy with the list. It ran smooth. When I got Survival I won and when I didn't the deck still did well since I still run awesome cards.

    I'm going to keep playing with this but the only change I would make is -1 Pridemage, +1 Clique. So far I have liked how it is.

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