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Thread: [Deck] Sneak and Show

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    [Deck] Sneak and Show

    Sneak & Show




    Old thread: http://www.mtgthesource.com/forums/s...B-Sneak-Attack

    Introduction and History

    Sneak and Show is a blue-red combo-control deck, which primarily operates by trying to resolve either Sneak Attack or Show and Tell to put a huge, most often game-ending fatty like Griselbrand and/or Emrakul, the Aeons Torn into play.

    The deck first burst into the competitive Legacy scene in mid-2010 with the printing of Emrakul, the Aeons Torn, a fatty overpowered enough that it was worth building a whole deck around.
    While Survival of the Fittest decks certainly dominated most tournaments in 2010, Sneak & Show and similar Show and Tell based strategies steadily rose to the top tier of Legacy decks, claiming its first Grand Prix Top 8 in Columbus, where Korey Age piloted a list with Woodfall Primus as the fatty of choice alongside Emrakul.

    Shortly after Survival got hit by the ban-hammer, a new format-defining card arrived in the form of Mental Misstep. Conveniently for Sneak & Show, its combo enablers were completely unaffected by the free counter, while Misstep found its way into many lists, providing protection against disruptive 1-mana spells such as Thoughtseize or Spell Pierce.
    However, Sneak & Show wasn’t the no. 1 Show and Tell deck during most of the Misstep-era, due to Hive Mind, a mostly 3-card-combo deck that could kill on the spot without the need to actually attack with an Emrakul, being THE deck to beat at the time.
    Still, Sneak & Show put up some solid results during that time, sneaking two similar lists into the Top 16 of the Bazaar of Moxen 2011 (Rodrigo Togores and Johannes Gutbrod).

    With Mental Misstep banned, the format sped up slightly, which improved Sneak & Show’s position over Hive Mind.
    Grand Prix Amsterdam saw two copies of Sneak & Show making Top 16 of the tournament, piloted by teammates Jan Van der Vegt and Erwin Sneek.

    The deck continued to put up results in larger tournaments like SCG Opens in late 2011 and early 2012, thanks to the increasing popularity of fair slow decks like Maverick and Stoneblade, which were excellent matchups.
    When Griselbrand got printed in May of 2012, Sneak & Show quickly became THE combo deck to beat, and many voices calling for a ban of either Show and Tell or Griselbrand rose up. While you certainly had some outs to Emrakul or Progenitus, Griselbrand’s card-drawing ability made it extremely difficult to turn the game around once the life-linking demon had entered the battlefield. It also made the Sneak Attack part of the combo much better, since it could cheat a Griselbrand into play, who could draw enough cards to find another red source and an Emrakul to end the game on the spot.
    Sneak & Show’s tournament success spiraled upwards drastically from there, winning 7 SCG Opens in 2012 and 2013, as well as Top 8ing countless large tournaments and GPs.
    Even established professional players like William “Huey” Jensen appreciated its raw power and picked up the deck, putting up consistent great results, culminating in the 2013 SCG Indianapolis Invitational, where Huey, Gerry Thompson, Brian Braun-Duin and Brad Nelson, who took down the tournament in a mirror finals against Huey, all made Top 8 with Sneak and Show.

    The huge hype around the deck started dying down in 2014. It still put up great, consistent results, but with dedicated hate-cards like Containment Priest emerging, it was more difficult to just walk through tournaments without much resistance.

    Khans of Tarkir game-changers Treasure Cruise and Dig through Time created a completely new Legacy metagame, with seemingly infinite amounts of Red Elemental Blast effects running around to keep the overpowered Delve spells in check.
    Still, it managed to make it into the Top 16 of the largest Legacy Grand Prix ever, GP New Jersey 2014, piloted by Jonathan Anghelescu (yours truly ;) ), incorporating Dig Through Time as a “super-cantrip” and main deck Fire // Ice to combat UR Delver, the S tier deck of the time.

    Shortly after that, Treasure Cruise got banned in early 2015, slowing the format down significantly. This time was the birth of the 4 Dig through Time – powered version of Omnitell, which became the new boogeyman of Legacy and, even though slower, was consistent and powerful enough to take Sneak & Show’s place as the premier Show and Tell strategy.

    However, Dig through Time followed Treasure Cruise to the ban-grave shortly thereafter, and Sneak & Show reclaimed its spot as Show and Tell deck no. 1.
    Yet, the overall popularity of the strategy was at an all-time low and except winning the Legacy Magic Online Championship (piloted by yours truly) it didn’t put up many significant results during late 2015 and early 2016.

    A new version of Sneak and Show emerged in 2016, a hybrid of Sneak and Omnitell, therefore called OmniSneak. With a better Eldrazi and Death and Taxes matchup than traditional Sneak & Show, it proved to be a strong meta-choice, making it to the Top 8 of GP Prague and winning three SCG Legacy Classics.

    In late 2016, traditional Sneak & Show made a triumphant return, with Kentaro Yamamoto winning Grand Prix Chiba, the greatest success the deck has ever seen. Another copy snuck into the Top 4, while OmniSneak didn’t make it past the Top 32.



    To be continued (…)

    Ways to build the deck

    The deck consists of 5 different parts that comprise the maindeck:
    1. Enablers

    Sneak Attack: One half of the name-sake, no card in the history of magic more effectively cheats creatures into play for such value…again and again.

    Show and Tell: The other half of the equation, Show and Tell enables all the broken spells at the cost of 2U. Note that you can use it to put in Sneak Attack, saving one red mana. Unlike Sneak Attack, it is a symmetrical effect, which makes it a little more dangerous, in case your opponent puts their own Emrakul or a hate-permanent like Humility into play.

    2. Fatties

    Since the printing of Griselbrand, there is not much room for discussion about the main deck fatty configuration. 4 Griselbrand/ 4 Emrakul are basically set.
    In the Omnisneak hybrid, 3 Omniscience made their way into the deck, removing 1 Emrakul and 1 Griselbrand.

    3. The Search Engine

    Brainstorm: In case you haven't heard, this card turns out to be quite strong in strategies with access to Blue mana and fetch lands.

    Ponder: Next best after Brainstorm, Ponder is preferable to Preordain in this strategy because it digs a card deeper and the deck craves the pieces of its 2 card combo.

    Intuition: Provides versatility within the maindeck and sideboard. Most often it grabs the most effective combo piece or creature for a given situation, though other times it grabs counter-magic or a specific sideboard piece. Intuition gets blown out by Surgical Extraction post-board, so it gets boarded out a lot.

    Preordain: Offers more redundancy.

    Sensei's Divining Top: Another effective card filtering option, Top is especially effective in the mid-game and against heavy-discard strategies. It is less effective against fast decks.

    Gitaxian Probe: This probably belongs more in the "Protection"-paragraph, but it does some minor cantripping as well. Probe is a nice card to support Sneak & Show's main game plan - resolving a Show and Tell or Sneak Attack as fast as possible. Against Tempo, it shows you how many counters your opponent has that you need to fight through. Against Death and Taxes, you can see which hate you need to play around. In the mirror and against Reanimator you might even catch your opponent at a point where you can just win via Show and Tell into creature.
    More experienced Sneak & Show players might be able to read their opponent well enough to know how many counters / hate they have, but fact is that you can't ever be 100 % sure. Gitaxian Probe dispenses with the need to "guess" and makes everything easier by just showing you what's up.
    Generally, you want to cast it in the turn you go off. If you don't know what you're playing against, casting it right away is the better choice, since it allows you to make decisions like whether or not playing around cards like Stifle and Wasteland, leaving mana open to cast your Spell Pierce, etc.

    4. Protection

    To be able to protect the combo against control decks and discard, and to counter opposing cards that would stop the creatures from attacking like Peacekeeper, Moat, Humility, Blazing Archon, and Ensnaring Bridge, as well as taking the control-role against other combo decks, Sneak & Show utilizes a strong counter-suite that consists of:

    Force of Will: Nothing to argue about here; we play a blue (nonblack) deck that needs protection so we play a playset of Forces.

    Misdirection: Most often acting as a fifth Force of Will, it can also provide blowouts against cards like Hymn to Tourach and Maelstrom Pulse.

    Daze: Opinions differ a lot whether or not Daze fits into Sneak & Shows counter-suit. It is another free counterspell to protect your combo, but it does set you back a whole turn if it doesn't result in an immediate win or has to be used defensively. This is especially tough for this deck, because you want to get to 3/4/5 mana as fast as possible.

    Spell Pierce: Ultra efficient and versatile. Counters everything that worries the Sneak & Show player, from Counterspell, over Thoughtseize to Liliana of the Veil or Jace, the Mind Sculptor.

    Flusterstorm: Some prefer Flusterstorm over Spell Pierce because it's more effective against storm strategies and Reanimator. However, the fact that it doesn't hit Planeswalkers and other non-instants/sorceries like Aether Vial makes it much more narrow than Spell Pierce.
    Jace, the Mind Sculptor: Jace is very good against control decks and in the mirror, providing both another must-counter and even an alternate win-condition.

    5. Acceleration and lands

    Recommended stock mana configuration:

    4 Scalding Tarn
    3 other blue fetchlands
    5 sol-lands (3-4 Ancient Tomb and 1-2 City of Traitors)
    3 Volcanic Island
    3 Island
    1 Mountain
    4 Lotus Petal

    This can be customized to fit one's own playstyle of course, but this is considered the stock manabase. Simian Spirit Guide is another playable accelerant, blanking an opponent's Daze and enabling a surprise Sneak Attack activation on your opponent's turn.

    Main Deck Construction Guideline

    Ultimately, this is what the stock shell currently looks like:

    Traditional Sneak & Show
    16 combo pieces (4 Emmy, 4 Grisel + 8 Sneak & Show)
    4 Brainstorm + 4 Ponder
    4 Force of Will
    9 Flex-slots (e.g. Gitaxian Probe, Preordain, Spell Pierce, Misdirection, Daze, Flusterstorm, Sensei's Divining Top, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Omniscience, etc.)

    OmniSneak
    16 combo pieces (3 Emrakul, 3 Griselbrand, 3 Omniscience, 3 Sneak Attack, 4 Show and Tell)
    2-4 Cunning Wish
    1 Impulse
    4 Brainstorm + 4 Ponder
    4 Force of Will
    0-4 Preordain / Gitaxian Probe
    2-4 Spell Pierce / Flusterstorm



    6. The Sideboard

    There is a huge amount of options in the deck's colors. I will try to list the ones most relevant in the current (December 2016) metagame. Also, I will only include cards that have been thoroughly tested in competitive settings and have had tournament success.

    Blood Moon: The best permanent answer to Karakas as well as an almost complete lock-out against many of the format's most popular decks (Eldrazi, Shardless BUG, Deathblade, BUG Delver, etc.).

    Red Elemental Blast / Pyroblast: Very versatile and especially good against Delver decks, where it can act as both a counterspell and a removal for Delver of Secrets to buy some time. Also strong against cantrip-reliant combo-decks and Jace-decks like UWr Miracles and Shardless BUG.

    Defense Grid: The best card we have against Tempo(Delver)-decks' huge amount of counters post-board. If you decide to play with Defense Grid, only board it in against Tempo; it's not worth it against decks with less than 8 post-board counters. Though it can be effective against Miracles, I generally don't bring it in against them, since they have threats of their own (Jace, Counterbalance) that I want to be able to counter (remember that Grid is symmetrical).

    Flusterstorm: Both a possible main deck and sideboard card (more often found in the sideboard than main, though). See above for explanation.

    Through the Breach: Functioning as a one-shot instant Sneak Attack, Through the Breach can work as a supplement providing further redundancy to the creature cheating strategy as well as replacing Show and Tell in the mirror match, against decks that can abuse S&T's symmetry (Reanimator/Belcher) or vs hatebear-decks like Death and Taxes that have a lot of answers to Show and Tell / Sneak Attack.

    Pyroclasm / Kozilek’s Return / Sudden Shock / Grim Lavamancer: Each of those red removal spells has its pros and cons. Pyroclasm is the cheapest sweeper we have access to, but can be somewhat blanked by Death and Taxes’ Mother of Runes. Kozilek’s Return acts at instant-speed and circumvents Mother of Runes, but costs 1 colorless mana more. Sudden Shock is excellent against blue decks that play problematic hate-bears, but less useful against swarm-decks like Elves. Grim Lavamancer provides a quite different angle and is very hard to remove, since most decks don’t leave in removal against Sneak & Show.

    Grafdigger's Cage: Reanimator and Dredge are some of the more difficult matchups. Cage is great against Reanimator and ok against Dredge, while also blanking both Natural Order and Green Sun's Zenith against Elves and Past in Flames vs Storm.

    Surgical Extraction: Even better than Cage against Reanimator, since it can't be bounced / Abrupt Decayed. Solid against Storm and great in the mirror against Intuition and at extracting a countered Sneak Attack.

    Echoing Truth and Wipe Away: Bounce against permanent-hate like Ensnaring Bridge, Humility and Pithing Needle. Echoing Truth is also very good against Empty the Warrens decks like Storm and Belcher or the Entreat the Angels tokens of Miracles. Wipe Away can bounce a fatty against Reanimator and is generally better against Miracles than Echoing Truth, because it can't be countered. It can also randomly split second bounce Karakas if they wait until your turn to bounce your Emrakul.
    Note that Wipe Away should also be boarded against Storm; bouncing a land in response to a hellbent Infernal Tutor turns Wipe Away into Cancel.

    Engineered Explosives: Another catch-all that can also act as a sweeper.

    Jace, the Mind Sculptor: In the matchups you board him in (mirror, slow combo, creaturelight control) you will often be able to win the game with Jace alone. Especially in the mirror, he gives a huge edge and lets you play the control-role very easily.

    Vendilion Clique: A very good card against other combo-decks, creating a clock while being disruptive as well. Obviously great in the mirror, but also good against control-decks that board out their spot-removal.

    Boseiju, Who Shelters All: The absolute trump-card against Miracles. Also useful as a 20th land against Delver-decks and very good in the mirror.

    Omniscience: Another Show and Tell target that’s very good against Death and Taxes, against Containment Priest in general and in any matchup where you could get killed if you just drop in Emrakul off of Show and Tell (Storm, mirror, Reanimator, etc.).

    Matchup Analysis and how to play Sneak & Show

    The way you want to play the deck differs from matchup to matchup, so the MU-analysis and the how-to fall together.

    Even though Legacy is a very diverse format, I won't cover non-Tier strategies, since those are not as relevant. Questions about specific matchups against less popular decks are welcome to be asked in the thread.

    Note that “key-cards from x” means their key-cards against Sneak and Show, not their key-cards in general.

    Miracles 55:45

    An overall positive matchup (Legend Miracles is a different story, but much more rare than the Ponder build).

    They have a lot of dead cards pre-board, which forces them to draw the exact right part of their deck to have a chance in game 1. They’ll still have 4 Terminus in the pre-board games, so a mere Show and Tell into Emrakul is a somewhat risky play, if you don’t have any counter backup.

    Depending on your hand, Counterbalance/Countertop can be annoying, but usually they’ll only have two 4-drops and two to four 3-drops to counter your enablers with Counterbalance.
    Very few lists run Karakas, which can provide an annoying additional angle of disruption towards us.

    Post-board they get access to about 6 additional counters, as well as hate-bears such as Containment Priest and disruptive creatures like Vendilion Clique.
    You should also be aware of Wear // Tear, which can be quite a blow-out if you cast Sneak Attack without additional mana to activate it right away.
    The post-board games tend to get very long and grindy, unless you have an early protected business spell, when they haven’t developed their mana to cast multiple of their REB / Flusterstorm effects yet.

    If you’re dedicated to beat Miracles, Boseiju is your most potent sideboard option against them. You should also bring in any bounce spells and at least 1 removal (Sudden Shock is probably the most effective one against them) for a potential Containment Priest.

    Key-cards from Miracles: Force of Will, Counterspell, Vendilion Clique, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Counterbalance, Pyroblast, Flusterstorm, Containment Priest, (Venser, Shaper Savant (only in Legend Miracles))

    Useful sideboard cards against Miracles: Boseiju, who shelters all, Red Elemental Blast, Flusterstorm, Vendilion Clique, Through the Breach, Wipe Away, Sudden Shock, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Omniscience

    Grixis Delver 40:60

    One of the more annoying Delver matchups. Attacking from both the counter- and discard-angle, Grixis Delver has many ways to disrupt our game-plan, paired with a fast, cheap clock.
    Most Young Pyromancer - lists nowadays have both Cabal Therapy and Spell Pierce main, in addition to the standard playsets of Force of Will and Daze.

    As against every Delver deck, try to play around Daze and, if you can, around Spell Pierce as well. They might draw the wrong part of their deck (Bolts and multiple creatures) in the pre-board games, but you don’t want to get blown-out by Daze if you can avoid it.
    If your opponent doesn’t know what deck you’re on in game 1, hold on to your Lotus Petals to make their blind Cabal Therapies less effective. They will most likely name Counterbalance or other Miracles-cards if you lead off with blue fetch-lands or basic Island.

    Post-board, Grixis Delver loads up on counter-magic (Pyroblast and Flusterstorm, sometimes Invasive Surgery) and might add additional Cabal Therapies, paired with Surgical Extraction. Some lists also run Vendilion Clique and/or permanent-based hate like Pithing Needle, which makes up for their comparatively low number of counters for Sneak Attack (both Pyroblast and Flusterstorm don’t hit it).

    Their clock gets somewhat less effective in the post-board games, since they’ll most likely board out Lightning Bolts and possibly Gurmag Angler. Mass-removal like Kozilek’s Return / Pyroclasm can buy you even more time to allow you to develop your mana-base to play around soft-counters and sculpt a hand that can overwhelm one or two hard-counters.
    Blood Moon is often too slow against them, especially on the draw. Sometimes, they can even let it resolve and kill you with a Young Pyromancer, backed up by Force of Will(s) and Pyroblast(s). Against the 4-color Delver versions without Young Pyromancer it can be viable to bring in Blood Moon, more on the play than on the draw, however.

    Key-cards from Grixis Delver: Force of Will, Daze, Young Pyromancer, Cabal Therapy, Spell Pierce, Flusterstorm, Pyroblast, Surgical Extraction

    Useful sideboard card against Grixis Delver: Flusterstorm, REB, Pyroclasm/Kozilek’s Return, Sudden Shock, Grim Lavamancer, Wipe Away / Echoing Truth, Defense Grid, Engineered Explosives

    Colorless Eldrazi Stompy 60:40

    Unlike other combo decks like Storm, Sneak and Show doesn’t get hit as hard by Chalice of the Void, which makes the Eldrazi matchup slightly positive overall. Still, there are certain draws from them that are very hard to beat; usually involving an early Thought-Knot Seer or an Endbringer they put into play off of your Show and Tell.
    They also have the potential to curve out into a turn 4/5 kill, so a late Show and Tell can sometimes get raced.
    You should also be wary of getting caught off-guard by Warping Wail, even though they’ll usually tap out to cast their threats instead of leaving mana open to cast Wail, especially if they don’t know that you’re on Sneak and Show.

    This matchup is slightly easier for the OmniSneak variant, since Omniscience doesn’t care about Endbringer and Show and Tell into Omniscience Emrakul can beat some scenarios where Show and Tell Emrakul would lose to an alpha-swing.

    Post-board the they get access to Thorn of Amethyst effects, which are annoying, but not back-breaking. Some lists also run Revoker / Pithing Needle, so you should board in bounce-spells, removal and Through the Breach to hedge against that.
    Blood Moon is a huge trump-card against Eldrazi, locking them out of casting their most relevant creatures, Thought-Knot Seer, Eldrazi Smasher and Endbringer.

    Note that the white Eldrazi version (containing both Thalia, Guardian of Thraben and Thalia, Heretic Cathar, as well as Karakas) is a much more problematic matchup. Luckily, the Colorless variant is much more popular.

    Key-cards from Colorless Eldrazi Stompy: Thought-Knot Seer, Endbringer, Warping Wail Thorn of Amethyst, Phyrexian Revoker / Pithing Needle

    Useful sideboard cards against Colorless Eldrazi Stompy: Blood Moon, Through the Breach, Wipe Away / Echoing Truth, Omniscience


    Death and Taxes 35:65

    One of the most difficult matchups, the most difficult of the tier decks. Their main deck contains a high amount of disruptive permanents, from annoying tax-effects like Thalia, Guardian of Thraben (paired with Rishadan Port) to Phyrexian Revoker hard-locks (either Phyrexian Revoker on Sneak Attack + Sanctum Prelate on 3 or Revoker on Sneak Attack + Karakas).

    Pre-board, you should just jam your combo as early as possible and hope they don’t have an answer, which is unlikely, but possible. Waiting for Sneak Attack to play around a potential Karakas will only leave you vulnerable to Phyrexian Revoker. Especially an early Griselbrand via Show and Tell can be a route to victory, drawing enough cards to be able to kill through a single hate-piece like Karakas or Sanctum Prelate.
    In the post-board games, you get some significant interaction to break their locks (Kozilek’s Return even gets around Mother of Runes), and the matchup becomes much less hopeless. They get access to some additional hate, like Pithing Needle, but overall, most of their relevant hate is in the main deck already.

    Thanks to Omniscience and Cunning Wish (which can find Kozilek’s Return), OmniSneak has a much easier Death and Taxes matchup than traditional Sneak and Show, even though Revoker + Prelate on 3 is still a (pre-board) lock.

    If you expect a lot of Death and Taxes in any given tournament, adding dedicated sideboard answers like Sulfur Elemental, Progenitus (they can’t beat Show and Tell into Progenitus) or Massacre Wurm / Inferno Titan is a viable option. Main deck answers to Phyrexian Revoker, such as Fire // Ice, are also an effective possibility.

    Key-cards from Death and Taxes: Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, Phyrexian Revoker, Sanctum Prelate, Karakas, Palace Jailer (rare), Pithing Needle

    Useful sideboard cards against Death and Taxes: Kozilek’s Return / Pyroclasm, Sudden Shock, Grim Lavamancer, Wipe Away / Echoing Truth, Engineered Explosives, Blood Moon, Through the Breach, Omniscience

    Show and Tell mirror

    The mirror, be it the “real mirror” or the one against Omnitell, is a rather unpleasant affair and comes down to luck a lot of the time. However, there still are some guidelines one can follow to increase their chances.

    Generally, you should wait for your opponent to make the first move. If you have Sneak Attack with double FoW backup, it’s a different story, but often times if you go for it with one counter-backup, they’ll have two and kill you on their following turn.
    I like to assume the hard-control role in the mirror, playing draw-go while making my land drops for as long as possible. If I can manage it, I’ll only go off when I draw the 8th card for my turn and have a hand full of counters for protection.

    Gitaxian Probe obviously helps a lot in the mirror, and, just like Omniscience, allows you to leave in a few Show and Tells for the post-board games. It also allows you to catch your opponent off-guard, if they kept a counterless hand, in which case you can combo off much earlier than you’d usually do with the defensive playstyle where you have to assume the worst from your opponent’s hand.

    If you’re really dedicated to increase your chances in the mirror, Vendilion Clique, Boseiju, who shelters all, Jace, the Mind Sculptor and Through the Breach should probably be somewhere in your 75.

    Key-cards in the mirror: Sneak Attack, Force of Will, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Boseiju, who shelters all, Through the Breach, Omniscience, Vendilion Clique

    Useful sideboard cards in the mirror: Vendilion Clique, Omniscience, Boseiju, who shelters all, Through the Breach, Flusterstorm, REB

    Storm (Ad Nauseam Tendrils) 55:45

    A very close matchup. Pre-board your goal should be to get Griselbrand into play as fast as possible. As long as you are at a healthy life total you can't really lose from there (remember to activate Griselbrand only when you need to find a counter, otherwise you leave yourself vulnerable to their discard). Show and Tell Emrakul after Turn 2 often just results in dying on your opponent's turn, so you should only go for it if it's the only thing you can do.

    Spell Piercing or even using Force of Will on a Ritual can be necessary, so keep an eye on the amount of cards in their hand and think how much mana they could still generate. Letting a Dark Ritual resolve might just blank your Force of Will because of a Duress or Cabal Therapy cast after the resolved Ritual.
    They will rarely go off without at least one form of protective disruption against you, so if they cast a Duress on Turn 2 and start Ritualing on Turn 3 while you drew a Force of Will after their Duress, you can definitely save that counter for their Infernal Tutor or other business spell.
    If they didn't cast a discard spell yet and only have one - producing land in play countering the Ritual they cast with that land is often the right way.

    Post-board many ANT lists have access to Xantid Swarm, which is very annoying, since it even blanks Griselbrand. Therefore, you should always board 1-2 sweepers against Storm, which also hit a potential Empty the Warrens or Dark Confidant.
    Other problematic sideboard cards from them are Flusterstorm, which can catch you off-guard very easily, and Karakas, though that is a rather rare choice nowadays.

    Note that Wipe Away turns into a Cancel, when it bounces a land in response to a hellbent Infernal Tutor, which is pretty neat.

    Use REB to counter their cantrips / Probes aggressively.

    This matchup takes a lot of practice and you definitely need to know how ANT operates to fight it optimally.

    Key-cards from Storm: Cabal Therapy + Duress, Past in Flames, Xantid Swarm

    Useful sideboard cards against Storm: Flusterstorm, REB, Grafdigger’s Cage / Surgical Extraction, Echoing Truth / Engineered Explosives / Pyroclasm / Kozilek’s Return, Omniscience

    BR Reanimator 45:55

    One of the fastest combo decks around these days, BR Reanimator has replaced its UB brother in the Legacy metagame for the most part. UB Reanimator was one of the most difficult matchups for Sneak and Show. Thankfully, BR is somewhat easier, since they only have discard as disruption.
    However, the matchup is still very scary and I always know that I have a tough match ahead of me when my opponent shows me Chancellor of the Annex as the first turn starts.

    Cantrip-heavy hands are quite good against their heavy discard-plan. Show and Tell gets cast more often than you’d think against BR Reanimator, since they often empty their whole hand of fatties with Faithless Looting. Plus, unless they have Griselbrand or Tidespout Tyrant, you can overpower a Chancellor of the Annex (the most likely creature they could have, since it’s the only 4-of fatty in most lists) or Sire of Insanity off of a Show and Tell quite easily.

    Note that Intuition is a cute answer to Exhume, since you can search for 3 Griselbrands to exhume one into play.

    Post-board you can take on the control role very nicely, with additional counters and graveyard-hate, plus Vendilion Clique, Jace and Through the Breach as additional finishers. They get access to Pithing Needle, so remember to board your bounce spells in; incidentally, Wipe Away and Echoing Truths are also quite efficient answers to many of their fatties.

    You have to accept that there will be some hands from BR Reanimator you won’t ever beat, but if the game goes long, you are heavily favored, especially post-board.

    Key-cards from BR Reanimator: Chancellor of the Annex, Unmask, Thoughtseize, Pithing Needle, Blazing Archon

    Useful sideboard cards against BR Reanimator: Flusterstorm, Through the Breach, Grafdigger’s Cage / Surgical Extraction, Echoing Truth / Wipe Away, Vendilion Clique, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Omniscience


    Shardless BUG 60:40

    One of the easier matchups. They only have 4 Force of Wills and about 6 discard-spells to disrupt you pre-board, as well as the occasional Liliana of the Veil or Jace, the Mind Sculptor to punish an unprotected Show and Tell into Emrakul (you should still go for it most of the time, since many Shardless BUG lists have cut down on planeswalkers).
    Their clock is also rather slow, which gives you a lot of time to find your combo pieces. As against all discard-heavy strategies, cantrips are very effective against them and are the cards you most want to see in your opening hand. Spell Pierce also does a lot of work against their discard and Planeswalkers.
    Misdirection is definitely your card with the most blowout-potential against Shardless BUG, hitting both Maelstrom Pulse and Hymn to Tourach, even Ancestral Vision!

    Post-board they bring in additional discard and disruptive permanents like Pithing Needle or Vendilion Clique. Some lists used to run Meddling Mage, but he has largely disappeared from their sideboards.
    They also usually have some number of Golgari Charms, which makes a naked Sneak Attack (without mana to activate it) a little riskier. Still, most often you should rather take the small chance of them having Golgari Charm than having your Sneak Attack discarded by a Thoughtseize or Hymn to Tourach, which is much more likely.

    You get to board in a lot of bombs against them, including Blood Moon, Jace TMS, Through the Breach and clean answers to many of their threats, like Red Elemental Blasts and Vendilion Clique (which is great against their planeswalkers).
    Even though almost all lists play 2 basics these days, Blood Moon is still very often game-ending against them.

    Key-cards from Shardless BUG: Hymn to Tourach, Thoughtseize, Force of Will, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Liliana of the Veil, Pithing Needle, Vendilion Clique

    Useful sideboard cards against Shardless BUG: Blood Moon, REB, Flusterstorm, Through the Breach, Echoing Truth / Wipe Away / Engineered Explosives, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Vendilion Clique

    Lands 65:35

    Lands is one of the easiest matchups, even more so for the OmniSneak version.
    Their only way to win pre-board is a fast Marit Lage arrival. Their grind-engines around Life from the Loam and Punishing Fire are mostly useless against you. Try to counter their Explorations, Gambles and Crop Rotations and remember most lists don’t have Karakas main deck, so Show and Tell Emrakul is often good enough in the pre-board games.

    Most Lands builds these days have moved away from Rishadan Port, replacing it with Ghost Quarter, which is much less disruptive for us than Port.

    Post-board they get access to Sphere of Resistance, which is quite annoying, especially when their mana denial plan works. Still, we have enough sol-lands and Lotus Petals that it shouldn’t matter too much. If you have a hand that is soft to Sphere, it is very viable to FoW it.
    Blood Moon is an obvious blow-out against them, even though they have Krosan Grip as an out to it. Also be wary of Grip when casting Sneak Attack. For example, if you have 4 mana and an uncracked fetch-land, crack it before casting Sneak Attack, since they might Krosan Grip it if you fetch to activate after resolving Sneak Attack.

    Key-cards from Lands: Crop Rotation, Exploration, Dark Depths + Thespian Stage, Sphere of Resistance, Krosan Grip

    Useful sideboard cards against Lands: Blood Moon, Through the Breach, Wipe Away / Echoing Truth, Vendilion Clique, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Omniscience

    Aggro Loam (4 color Loam) 60:40

    Similar to Lands, Aggro Loam is an overall positive matchup, though a bit trickier than Lands.
    They have quite a few answers to Show and Tell into creature, in the form of Knight of the Reliquary (searching up Karakas) and Liliana of the Veil. Most of their other main-deck disruption, like Chalice of the Void, doesn’t matter too much against you.
    Dark Confidant and Green Sun’s Zenith (x=2 Gaddock Teeg, x=3 Knight of the Reliquary) are among their most dangerous cards (along with Knight and Liliana).

    Note that you can still get Sneak Attack on the battlefield with Gaddock Teeg on board by Show and Telling it into play.

    Their boarding plan contains discard and some potential hate-bears, which increases their chances only minimally, since you get access to removal and huge bombs like Blood Moon.

    Key-cards from Aggro Loam: Knight of the Reliquary, Karakas, Liliana of the Veil, Gaddock Teeg, Dark Confidant, Thoughtseize, Containment Priest (rare)

    Useful sideboard cards against Aggro Loam: Blood Moon, Through the Breach, Pyroclasm / Kozilek’s Return / Grim Lavamancer / Sudden Shock, Engineered Explosives / Wipe Away / Echoing Truth, Vendilion Clique

    Esper Deathblade 60:40

    A rather positive matchup, which gets much more difficult post-board.

    Pre-board they usually have some amount of Spell Pierces and Thoughtseizes alongside the playset of Force of Will. Stoneforge Mystic provides a fast-clock and Liliana of the Veil is very difficult to deal with. Other than that, most of their deck is rather useless against you, so unless they draw the right part of their deck, game 1 should be heavily in your favor.

    Post-board they get access to a variety of hate-cards, attacking you from different angles with additional discard (more Thoughtseizes, sometimes Duress), counters (Flusterstorm / Invasive Surgery / more Spell Pierces, sometimes even Blue Elemental Blast) and hate-bears (Containment Priest, Meddling Mage).
    You get to bring in some impactful cards like Blood Moon and removal for the hate-bears or Stoneforge Mystic, which buys you a lot of time. The games will usually go very long post-board, unless you have an explosive hand you manage to push through.

    Key-cards from Esper Deathblade: Force of Will, Spell Pierce, Thoughtseize, Liliana of the Veil, Flusterstorm, Invasive Surgery, Containment Priest, Meddling Mage, Notion Thief

    Useful sideboard cards against Esper Deathblade: Blood Moon, REB, Flusterstorm, Through the Breach, Pyroclasm / Kozilek’s Return / Sudden Shock / Grim Lavamancer, Echoing Truth / Wipe Away, Engineered Explosives, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Vendilion Clique

    UR Delver 60:40

    One of the easiest Delver matchups. Even though they have a fast clock, their only disruption comes in the form of counters (4 Daze 4 Force of Will main), so it’s usually not difficult to resolve an early Show and Tell.

    Even though they don’t play Wasteland, try to avoid fetching too many Volcanic Islands, to hedge against Price of Progress.

    If you have the choice between dropping Emrakul or Griselbrand off Show and Tell, try to go for Emrakul early on and Griselbrand in the later stages when your life total is low enough that you could get alpha swung to death through an Emrakul.

    Post-board they get additional counters, usually Pyroblast and Spell Pierce / Flusterstorm, as well as Pithing Needle as an out to Sneak Attack.
    Some lists run Sulfuric Vortex in their sideboard, so keep that in mind when deciding between Emrakul and Griselbrand off Show and Tell.

    Red Elemental Blast is one of your best cards against UR Delver, acting as both protection for the combo and removal against Delver of Secrets and Stormchaser Mage.

    Key-cards from UR Delver: Force of Will, Daze, Pyroblast, Spell Pierce, Flusterstorm, Pithing Needle, Sulfuric Vortex

    Useful sideboard cards against UR Delver: REB, Defense Grid, Flusterstorm, Pyroclasm / Kozilek’s Return / Sudden Shock / Grim Lavamancer, Echoing Truth / Wipe Away, Engineered Explosives, Boseiju, who shelters all

    Elves 65:35

    A very positive matchup that can get more difficult if they construct their sideboard hatefully enough.

    Pre-board their only way to win is to race you. In order to do that, they usually need to resolve either Glimpse of Nature or Natural Order, for which you have both Force of Will and often Spell Pierce as well. Keep in mind that they have access to Reclamation Sage in game 1 and no way to strip Sneak Attack out of your hand (again, pre-board), so try to avoid playing a naked Sneak Attack and passing the turn.

    Unlike with other decks, you don’t care about the Wirewood Symbiote / [CARDS]Elvish Visionary[CARDS] value engine, so usually, there is no need for you to counter either of them.

    There will be times where you struggle to assemble the combo and you’ll get beaten down by the little pointy ears, but generally you should be able to hold them off of their combo and end the game in the first few turns.

    Post-board they’ll usually have some amount of discard to interact with you, but you also improve your position after sideboarding with mass-removal and Grafdigger’s Cage. Games get a lot grindier post-board, but they’ll get punished very hard if they don’t mulligan aggressively for hands with discard.
    Some few lists run Crop Rotation + Karakas in the sideboard, so be prepared for that, even though it is rather rare.

    Key-cards from Elves: Glimpse of Nature, Natural Order, Cabal Therapy, Thoughtseize, Pithing Needle

    Useful sideboard cards against Elves: Grafdigger’s Cage, Pyroclasm / Kozilek’s Return / Sudden Shock, Grim Lavamancer, Flusterstorm, Echoing Truth / Wipe Away, Engineered Explosives

    General early-game plan

    As you can see, your game-approach changes quite a bit from matchup to matchup. Still, often you don't know which deck your opponent is on and don't know whether you should fetch for a basic, Ponder on Turn 1 or rather keep up your Spell Pierce to counter their discard.
    Gitaxian Probe helps a lot here, another reason why it fits the deck so well.

    Some general tips if you are on the play and have no idea what deck your opponent is playing:

    • Always fetch up a basic island if you want to go for turn 1 Ponder.

    • If you Ponder and don't shuffle, try to play around discard by leaving your business / important spells on top instead of drawing them.


    • If you have the choice between turn 1 Ponder and keeping up Spell Pierce without a Force of Will in hand, always keep up Spell Pierce against discard and fast combo decks.


    • If you have a Spell Pierce and a Brainstorm with a land and a Lotus Petal, it can be ok to give away information by playing Lotus Petal, since it gives you the ability to cast both Spell Pierce and Brainstorm if you are forced to.


    Tips and Tricks

    Even though you don't have that much room for interesting plays like other decks do, there are still some "tricks" to get around certain hate cards or bait a response that benefits you out of your opponent.

    How to beat Karakas
    I assume everyone who played with or against Sneak & Show before knows how this works, but it might help the others.
    To do this you need and Emrakul, it doesn't work with Griselbrand. If you have RR you can start it in your turn, with only R you have to wait until your opponent's end of turn. Then you activate Sneak Attack, putting Emrakul into play and enter your turn. You give your opponent priority in your beginning of combat step. If they bounce Emrakul then, you regain priority, and can activate Sneak Attack again to put Emrakul back into play. If your opponent lets you move to the declare attackers step and bounces Emrakul in response to the Annihilator trigger, they don't lose life, but you can just kill them on the following turn, because their board will be wiped and you get to keep Emrakul in hand.
    The easiest way around Karakas is Blood Moon or a surprise Wipe Away.

    How to use Griselbrand
    I have seen many players die with Griselbrand on board, because they get greedy or use his ability at the wrong time. This shouldn't happen, if you try to follow these guidelines:

    • Never activate Griselbrand's ability against Delver decks with Lightning Bolt, unless you absolutely have to.


    • Don't activate Griselbrand in your turn against Combo decks that protect themselves via discard. Let them cast their discard spells with a small amount of cards in hand and wait for their business spell to go onto the stack to dig for your Force of Will(s).



    Sneaky Griselbrand can block

    If you are at a low life total (let's say below 14) or your opponent has a lot of power on the board, sneaking in Griselbrand and hope to draw an Emrakul can be very risky. In this case it's better to activate Sneak Attack after your opponent declared attackers, block his strongest creature, and draw cards on his turn.
    You can also use this fact as a bait if you have Sneak Attack in play but no creature. Tap your red source around for a bit, pretending to think about putting Griselbrand into play and attacking, then pass the turn. That might keep your opponent from attacking in fear of a blocking lifelink demon.

    Misdirection vs Stifle

    When playing against a Stifle-deck, you always want to play around it (if you have no Brainstorm in hand). If you have Misdirection in hand, the playing-around means you can activate your fetchland in response to an activated/triggered ability of your opponent. If they Stifle your fetchland ability you can Misdirect that Stifle to their own trigger. You often want to keep your Misdirection for their counterspells, but it's an interaction you need to know of. Especially if resolving your fetch can mean playing around their soft-counters, it's often worth it to use your Misdirection, because it hurts their plan as well as helping yours to get around soft-counters.

    Decklists

    If you need a list for some initial testing before you make tweaks of your own, here are three tried and tested lists I’d recommend; one Preordain-build, one Gitaxian Probe - build, and the latest OmniSneak stock list:

    Kentaro Yamamoto’s Sneak and Show
    1st at GP Chiba November 2016

    3 Ancient Tomb
    2 City of Traitors
    2 Flooded Strand
    3 Island
    2 Misty Rainforest
    2 Polluted Delta
    2 Scalding Tarn
    3 Volcanic Island

    4 Emrakul, the Aeons Torn
    4 Griselbrand

    4 Brainstorm
    4 Force of Will
    4 Ponder
    4 Preordain
    4 Show and Tell
    4 Spell Pierce

    1 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
    4 Lotus Petal
    4 Sneak Attack

    SIDEBOARD
    3 Blood Moon
    3 Engineered Explosives
    1 Flusterstorm
    1 Grafdigger's Cage
    2 Grim Lavamancer
    1 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
    2 Red Elemental Blast
    2 Vendilion Clique

    Gitaxian Sneak and Show

    3 Ancient Tomb
    2 City of Traitors
    3 Island
    3 Misty Rainforest
    1 Mountain
    4 Scalding Tarn
    3 Volcanic Island

    4 Emrakul, the Aeons Torn
    4 Griselbrand

    4 Brainstorm
    4 Force of Will
    3 Gitaxian Probe
    4 Ponder
    4 Show and Tell
    4 Spell Pierce

    2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
    4 Lotus Petal
    4 Sneak Attack

    SIDEBOARD
    2 Blood Moon
    1 Boseiju, Who Shelters All
    2 Defense Grid
    1 Flusterstorm
    2 Grafdigger's Cage
    2 Pyroclasm
    1 Red Elemental Blast
    1 Sudden Shock
    2 Through the Breach
    1 Wipe Away

    JPA93's OmniSneak
    25th at GP Louisville January 2017

    3 Ancient Tomb
    2 City of Traitors
    4 Flooded Strand
    3 Island
    1 Misty Rainforest
    1 Polluted Delta
    1 Scalding Tarn
    3 Volcanic Island

    3 Emrakul, the Aeons Torn
    3 Griselbrand

    4 Brainstorm
    3 Cunning Wish
    4 Force of Will
    1 Impulse
    1 Intuition
    4 Ponder
    4 Preordain
    4 Show and Tell
    2 Spell Pierce

    3 Lotus Petal
    3 Omniscience
    3 Sneak Attack

    SIDEBOARD
    1 Boseiju, Who Shelters All
    2 Defense Grid
    1 Firemind's Foresight
    1 Flusterstorm
    1 Intuition
    1 Kozilek's Return
    1 Pyroclasm
    1 Red Elemental Blast
    1 Release the Ants
    1 Sudden Shock
    1 Surgical Extraction
    1 Through the Breach
    1 Trickbind
    1 Wipe Away

    Sneak and Show in action

    Here are some great feature matches from GP Chiba (November), where Kentaro Yamamoto won the title with Sneak and Show.

    Kentaro Yamamoto vs Death and Taxes
    Kentaro Yamamoto vs Sneak and Show mirror
    Kentaro Yamamoto vs Miracles


    Sample Sideboarding Guide

    As it is with probably every deck, there is no 100 % correct way to board with Sneak & Show. It's especially important that you construct your sideboard in a way that it is not clustered against a certain archetype, since you can seldom afford to board out too many cards without making your main game plan worse.

    However, here are some guidelines, using the Gitaxian Probe list from the Decklists section:

    Miracles:

    -2 Lotus Petal
    -3 Gitaxian Probe
    -1 City of Traitors

    +1 Boseiju, who shelters all
    +1 Flusterstorm
    +1 REB
    +1 Sudden Shock
    +2 Through the Breach

    Grixis Delver:

    -3 Gitaxian Probe
    -2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
    -4 Spell Pierce (You don't need Spell Pierce when you have Defense Grid)

    +2 Defense Grid
    +1 Flusterstorm
    +2 Pyroclasm
    +1 Sudden Shock
    +1 REB
    +1 Wipe Away
    +1 Boseiju, who shelters all


    Colorless Eldrazi Stompy:

    -2 Gitaxian Probe
    -4 Spell Pierce
    -2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor

    +2 Blood Moon
    +2 Through the Breach
    +1 Wipe Away
    +2 Pyroclasm
    +1 Sudden Shock

    Death and Taxes:

    -4 Spell Pierce
    -1 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
    -3 Gitaxian Probe

    +2 Blood Moon
    +2 Pyroclasm
    +1 Sudden Shock
    +2 Through the Breach
    +1 Wipe Away

    Show and Tell Mirror:

    -2 Show and Tell
    -2 Lotus Petal
    -1 Mountain

    +1 Boseiju, who shelters all
    +1 Flusterstorm
    +1 REB
    +2 Through the Breach

    Storm (Ad Nauseam Tendrils):

    -3 Gitaxian Probe
    -1 Mountain
    -2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
    -1 Emrakul, the Aeons Torn

    +1 Flusterstorm
    +2 Grafdigger's Cage
    +2 Pyroclasm
    +1 REB
    +1 Wipe Away

    BR Reanimator:

    -1 Mountain
    -1 Gitaxian Probe
    -1 Griselbrand
    -3 Show and Tell

    +1 Flusterstorm
    +2 Grafdigger's Cage
    +2 Through the Breach
    +1 Wipe Away

    Shardless BUG:

    -3 Gitaxian Probe
    -2 Lotus Petal
    -2 Force of Will

    +2 Blood Moon
    +1 Flusterstorm
    +1 REB
    +2 Through the Breach
    +1 Wipe Away

    Lands:

    -3 Gitaxian Probe
    -2 Force of Will on the play / -2 Spell Pierce on the draw

    +2 Blood Moon
    +2 Through the Breach
    +1 Wipe Away

    Aggro Loam:

    -3 Gitaxian Probe
    -2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
    -2 Force of Will on the play / -2 Spell Pierce on the draw

    +2 Blood Moon
    +2 Pyroclasm
    +1 Sudden Shock
    +2 Through the Breach
    +1 Wipe Away

    Esper Deathblade:

    -3 Gitaxian Probe
    -4 Force of Will
    -2 Lotus Petal

    +2 Blood Moon
    +1 Flusterstorm
    +1 REB
    +2 Pyroclasm
    +1 Sudden Shock
    +1 Wipe Away
    +1 Through the Breach

    UR Delver:

    -3 Gitaxian Probe
    -2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
    -1 Ancient Tomb
    -1 Sneak Attack
    -2 Force of Will

    +1 Boseiju, who shelters all
    +2 Defense Grid
    +1 Flusterstorm
    +2 Pyroclasm
    +1 Sudden Shock
    +1 REB
    +1 Wipe Away

    Elves:

    -2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
    -3 Gitaxian Probe
    -1 Sneak Attack

    +1 Flusterstorm
    +2 Grafdigger's Cage
    +2 Pyroclasm
    +1 Wipe Away
    Last edited by JPA; 05-05-2017 at 05:26 AM.

  2. #2
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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    New primer is the mutt's nuts, good job.

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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Thanks rxavage. The primer is still in progress, more sections like "How to identify you play against X" (similar to what apple713 did) and "Tips and Tricks" will be added soon.


    @apple713: I appreciate your work, but there are a few mistakes in what you wrote; you also left out UWR Delver completely. Here are some corrections:

    Quote Originally Posted by apple713
    Please do that exercise that anziD recommended. Identifying decks on the first turn or 2 is critical. The easiest Identifier as to what deck is sitting across from you is typically its land base. Many decks keep a fetch land in play until their second turn and its difficult until they actually use them. However many turn 1 plays reveal what your opponent is playing, or at least the type of deck they are playing.

    few examples

    Land: rishadan port <---- if this is the first land its usually D&T unless lands / goblins kept a bad hand, or goblins drops a vial.
    Deck: Goblins / death and taxes / 43 lands / MUD
    Type - Aggro - just win fast The only aggro deck there is Goblins. The rest is pretty hard control. "Just win fast" seems like a pretty loose plan against them, since they usually have hate cards against Show and Tell. "Try to win via Sneak Attack" seems like a better advice.

    Land: mutavault
    Deck: merfolk / Slivers
    Type - Tempo - watch out for counters

    Land: Karakas / plains
    Deck: death and taxes ( Esper Blade, UWr Miracles)
    type: Anti Sneak attack - get lucky :P

    Land: taiga
    Deck: Jund / 43 lands / zoo <--- if you see this in your meta it expect to win :P could theoretically be Goblins or BURG, but very unlikely that they lead off with Taiga
    Type aggro / control - expect to win


    Land: Bayou
    Deck: BUG / Jund / Nic Fit / loam Pox (ANT)
    Type: Aggro / control - expect discard


    Land: tropical island
    Deck: RUG / Bant <---- you play against this just about the same as you play against RUG so it doesn't really matter Bant is completely different from RUG. Against RUG, you can't lose after resolving Show and Tell. Bant plays Knight of the Reliquary, Karakas and Jace.
    All BUG-versions play Tropical Island, too. Deathblade has a 1-of Tropical Island as well
    Type: Tempo (watch for counter spells) / Control (if it's Shardless BUG or Deathblade)


    Land: Ancient tomb / city of traitors
    Deck: Dragon stumpy / Imperial Painter / MUD / Stax / Sneak Attack <------ should refrain from playing either of those turn 1 unless you are casting show and tell / sneak attack UB Tezzerator
    Type: Control - Chalice of void on 1, watch out for phyrexian revoker.

    Land: Volcanic island
    Deck: RUG / Sneak Attack / UWR Delver / ANT / TES

    Land: Underground Sea
    Deck: Reanimator / BUG / Team America / Esper / ANT (5 Good decks use it, probably why its it most expensive) TES
    Type: Tricky one - but expect minor disruption like daze / spell pierce / discard Underground Sea without a turn 1 play is most likely to be Esper Blade, since they only have Thoughtseize as a good proactive t1 play. U-Sea into Duress/Cabal Therapy is Storm, Deathrite Shaman is Shardless BUG/Team America/Deathblade

    Land: Scrubland
    Deck: Esper / Rock
    Type: Aggro - expect swords to plowshares Why is Swords to Plowshares the relevant card we have to expect from Esper / Rock? Karakas/Knight of the Reliquary paired with Discard and Liliana of the Veil is what we should fear about Scrubland

    Land: Savannah
    Deck: Maverick
    Type: Aggro - expect swords to plowshares again, Karakas is what we should play around, Swords to Plowshares is irrelevant

    Land: Tundra
    Deck: Miracles / Esper UW(R) Delver!!
    Type: Control / aggro - expect swords to plowshares / watch out for karakas / play around counters if it is not UWR Delver, you can expect to have a lot of time setting up your combo.

    Land: Plateau
    Deck: ??? Goblins
    Type: Rouge

    Land: Gemstone Mine / Cephalid Colosseum / City of Brass
    Deck: Dredge / Hypergenesis / TES Legacy Hypergenesis operates with a fetchland manabase and Spirit Guides, they play none of those lands
    Type: Combo / expect discard

    Land: island
    Deck: High tide / omnitell / Merfolk Sneak & Show / Esper / ANT / Reanimator
    Type: combo / control - expect counters

    Spell: Aether vial
    Deck: Goblins / Death and Taxes / Merfolk / Slivers

    Spell: Sensei's divining top
    Deck: Miracles / Nic Fit / Combo decks

    Spell: Preordain
    Deck: High tide / omnitell / ANT (maybe surely ^^)
    I will add my own version to the matchup-section in the primer soon.

  4. #4
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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Added the "how to identify" section. Please tell me how you like the approach and direction.

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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Quote Originally Posted by JPA View Post
    Added the "how to identify" section. Please tell me how you like the approach and direction.

    I like it, well done!!


    Does anyone know how the U/G Show and tell deck performed today. That brew looks like a lot of fun with some interesting tech choices. Anyone who didn't see it, check out deck tech on SCG at this link

    http://www.starcitygames.com/events/...ll_with_b.html

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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    @JPA

    You have made some good additions. By no means was my post comprehensive. I started writing just whatever came to mind and i was surprised that it amounted to all that.

    Anyways, you don't want to cram too much into the heads of beginners.You additions have include all possibilities small or big. For example

    Land: Karakas / plains
    Deck: death and taxes ( Esper Blade, UWr Miracles)
    type: Anti Sneak attack - get lucky :P


    While it is possible that esper / miracles will get a karakas / plains on t1 it is significantly less likely that it will turn out to be esper or miracles as opposed to death and taxes. What this translates to is, if I see a plains on t1 I'll try to combo off on my following turn without FOW back up. If I see a blue source, or something i suspect to play FOW/spell pierce, I'm probably not going to take that chance.

    I would recommend adding your changes to what I wrote and combining it with what you wrote up for the turn 1 plays.

    Swords isn't that big a deal unless you have griselbrand, then you need to have mana open to counter spell it or hopefully get a force.

    For some reason I'm not too afraid of karakas. It just means your are forced to win with sneak attack which is my preferred method of victory anyways.
    Currently Playing
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    Currently Brewing: [Deck] Sadistic Sacrament / Chalice NO Eldrazi
    Currently looking for Beta duals - Find me on Magictraders.com as "Apple"

    why cards are so expensive...hoarders

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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Quote Originally Posted by apple713 View Post
    @JPA

    Swords isn't that big a deal unless you have griselbrand, then you need to have mana open to counter spell it or hopefully get a force.

    For some reason I'm not too afraid of karakas. It just means your are forced to win with sneak attack which is my preferred method of victory anyways.
    Even if you don't have Force of Will, the 7-14 (you draw 7 "for free" because of the lifegain from Stp) cards you will draw are very likely to win you the game on the next turn. Swords is a dead card against Sneak & Show.

    It's not difficult to play around Karakas, sure. But it's still a better answer an opponent can have to our strategy than Swords to Plowshares.

  8. #8

    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    I would disagree with you APT. If your Griselbrand is StPd and not by your choice, I would wager that those 14 cards in your hand may not be enough to win.

    Yes, you could get something nutty like Sneak, Grisel, Emmy infinite petals but, if you don't make it to the next turn that does you no good.

    I think for your anaylsis to be more accurate, in hindsight, we should have analyzed a more precise game state. i.e. how stocked are our hands and what does the board look like. I would bet you dollars to sense you lose if the StP was out of D&T assuming the game has played out normally.

    Also at Ben Weinberg's deck... I'm really not overly impressed by the deck. I think it would be SUPER fun but I doubt if it is a long term deck. I dislike the idea of a "super" Show and Tell when generally I only want to put in one card. What I mean is if we say break magic down into a game in which we assign a value to each card... Lets say Griselbrand is worth 5 cards and we spent 1 by playing Eureka we get a net value of 3 cards 5-Eureka-Grisel= 3. Now if we consider every card our opponents put into play they get, lets say 3 cards off of our Eureka. Making our net value 0 card as opposed to Grisel and show being a net 3 and our opponent getting 1 which leaves us with a net 2.

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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Quote Originally Posted by nodahero View Post
    I would disagree with you APT. If your Griselbrand is StPd and not by your choice, I would wager that those 14 cards in your hand may not be enough to win.

    Yes, you could get something nutty like Sneak, Grisel, Emmy infinite petals but, if you don't make it to the next turn that does you no good.

    I think for your anaylsis to be more accurate, in hindsight, we should have analyzed a more precise game state. i.e. how stocked are our hands and what does the board look like. I would bet you dollars to sense you lose if the StP was out of D&T assuming the game has played out normally.

    Also at Ben Weinberg's deck... I'm really not overly impressed by the deck. I think it would be SUPER fun but I doubt if it is a long term deck. I dislike the idea of a "super" Show and Tell when generally I only want to put in one card. What I mean is if we say break magic down into a game in which we assign a value to each card... Lets say Griselbrand is worth 5 cards and we spent 1 by playing Eureka we get a net value of 3 cards 5-Eureka-Grisel= 3. Now if we consider every card our opponents put into play they get, lets say 3 cards off of our Eureka. Making our net value 0 card as opposed to Grisel and show being a net 3 and our opponent getting 1 which leaves us with a net 2.
    Eureka is a card to watch. Get them while they are cheap. When WOTC prints another permanent type it'll be good. I think the way he built the deck was interesting but could use much more tweaking
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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    I missed BBD's top 8 performance, did anyone watch it?

    Was OmniTell's win a fluke because the meta wasn't prepared for it, or was it a legit win

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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Quote Originally Posted by Technicolor Mage View Post
    I missed BBD's top 8 performance, did anyone watch it?

    Was OmniTell's win a fluke because the meta wasn't prepared for it, or was it a legit win
    Top 8 of the Invitational was Standard this time around. For future reference, the Invitational order switches every event, so at the next Invitational it'll be 4 Legacy 4 Standard 4 Legacy 4 Standard Top 8 Legacy and for the one after that it'll be 4 Standard 4 Legacy 4 Standard 4 Legacy Top 8 Standard and so on and so on.

  12. #12
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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Nice primer, pal. Even though I'm not a Sneaky player I've enjoyed reading it.
    But it lacks: Gemstone Mine, go
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    Quote Originally Posted by guillemnicolau View Post
    Since the print of dark petition grim tutor hasn't seen play in legacy (not in competitive decks).
    Quote Originally Posted by THerzog41 View Post
    I believe Maverick is still the best deck in the format and definitely the most underrated deck in the format.
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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Quote Originally Posted by nodahero View Post
    I would disagree with you APT. If your Griselbrand is StPd and not by your choice, I would wager that those 14 cards in your hand may not be enough to win.

    Yes, you could get something nutty like Sneak, Grisel, Emmy infinite petals but, if you don't make it to the next turn that does you no good.

    I think for your anaylsis to be more accurate, in hindsight, we should have analyzed a more precise game state. i.e. how stocked are our hands and what does the board look like. I would bet you dollars to sense you lose if the StP was out of D&T assuming the game has played out normally.
    I'm sorry, but I don't really want to argue about in which situation Swords to Plowshares is a good card against us. It's a bad card, often dead, and should be boarded out every time.
    If you think it's good because there can be situations where the Sneak & Show player COMPLETELY bricks on 14 cards (no Force of Will, no new combo, etc.), goes to 8+ life from STP, and gets dealt 8+ dmg next turn, then I can't change your mind about that and we agree to disagree.

    Quote Originally Posted by CabalTherapy View Post
    Nice primer, pal. Even though I'm not a Sneaky player I've enjoyed reading it.
    But it lacks: Gemstone Mine, go
    Thanks. That particular section lacks a lot, more will be added over time.

  14. #14

    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    I don't disagree with StP being bad. I have seen multiple instances where StP simply wrecked me g1 because D&T had an aggressive start and my grisel couldn't save himself and I lost due to the pressure.

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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Slightly off topic but still pretty amusing, at eternal champs I was waffling on what to play for vintage so ported my legacy sneak and show deck and made this happen:



    turn 1 duress into two show and tells. still lost this game!
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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Quote Originally Posted by oneiros76 View Post
    Slightly off topic but still pretty amusing, at eternal champs I was waffling on what to play for vintage so ported my legacy sneak and show deck and made this happen:



    turn 1 duress into two show and tells. still lost this game!
    Thats pretty crappy luck.

    On a side not I have point out I have never seen anyone with the same spell ground playmat as me except for you. Mine isn't drawn on but same style and color. Most people would get distracted by the black lotus in the grave and the three beta mox's in play... I notice the playmat...hahaha
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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Quote Originally Posted by oneiros76 View Post
    still lost this game!
    How? xD

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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Quote Originally Posted by JPA View Post
    How? xD
    S&t 1 - time vault
    S&t 2 - voltaic key

    Or

    Yawgmoths bargain

    Or

    Bazaar of baghdad

    Or

    Oath of druids -> tidespout tyrant

    Or ... This could get to be a very long list
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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Quote Originally Posted by AnziD View Post
    Top 8 of the Invitational was Standard this time around. For future reference, the Invitational order switches every event, so at the next Invitational it'll be 4 Legacy 4 Standard 4 Legacy 4 Standard Top 8 Legacy and for the one after that it'll be 4 Standard 4 Legacy 4 Standard 4 Legacy Top 8 Standard and so on and so on.
    Thanks for that tidbit

    So, in this particular tournament when I see that BBD finished 6th with Show and Tell, does this mean it was his ranking based on all the swiss rounds? Sorry, I am confused, I always assumed that in every large tournament you played your swiss rounds, and the computer did the rest in figuring out your exact percentages as to how you stacked up against the field. Then the top 8 faced off in single elimination based on their seeding.

    Even more on topic, I noticed his list does not run City of Traitors. I also see in the primer talk of Gemstone Mine, yet haven't seen a recent list running this land? What gives? I thought the list was pretty airtight

    EDIT: My post count shrunk, is this because the other thread was archived?

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    Re: [DTB] Sneak and Show

    Quote Originally Posted by Technicolor Mage View Post
    So, in this particular tournament when I see that BBD finished 6th with Show and Tell, does this mean it was his ranking based on all the swiss rounds? Sorry, I am confused, I always assumed that in every large tournament you played your swiss rounds, and the computer did the rest in figuring out your exact percentages as to how you stacked up against the field. Then the top 8 faced off in single elimination based on their seeding.

    Even more on topic, I noticed his list does not run City of Traitors. I also see in the primer talk of Gemstone Mine, yet haven't seen a recent list running this land? What gives? I thought the list was pretty airtight
    Hm, I think AnziD explained the Invitational format pretty well; it's split into Legacy and Standard, everything else is the same as in any other tournament. Maybe do a google search of your own or take a look at SCG's website.

    I don't know where you read about Gemstone Mine in the primer. BBD and CVM run 4 Ancient Tomb 0 City of Traitors. Some think that City of Traitors is bad, because you want to keep making land drops in many matchups and City sets you back there.

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