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Thread: Infinite Power

  1. #1
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    Infinite Power

    Earlier this year I rediscovered my love of the game after not playing for the last 15 years or so. I have always loved building interesting decks, and my goal is to build at least 1 reasonably competitive Tier 2 deck.

    I've been brewing around this idea for the past 2-3 months, and at this point I think I've got something good enough to see if others are interested in exploring this idea and see how successful we can make this deck.

    I'll share my current list (which evolved nicely throughout my time at Eternal Weekend) and then give you a small primer. I'll also track my record with the deck at the bottom of this post over time.

    So, without further ado I give you:
    Infinite Power

    //Core Of The Deck
    4 Power Artifact
    4 Grim Monolith
    3 Walking Ballista
    4 Mindshrieker
    4 Enlightened Tutor
    1 Draco

    //Card Filtering
    4 Brainstorm
    4 Ponder

    //Counters & Removal
    4 Force of Will
    3 Pact of Negation
    3 Swords to Plowshares

    //Flex Slots
    3 Standstill

    //Lands
    6 Island
    3 Flooded Strand
    3 Misty Rainforest
    2 Polluted Delta
    2 Scalding Tarn
    3 Tundra

    //Sideboard
    SB: 3 Leyline of Sanctity
    SB: 2 Holy Light
    SB: 2 Pithing Needle
    SB: 2 Detention Sphere
    SB: 1 Seal of Cleansing
    SB: 1 Walking Ballista
    SB: 1 Rest in Peace
    SB: 1 Swords to Plowshares
    SB: 1 Ensnaring Bridge
    SB: 1 Containment Priest




    Inception

    "What infinite mana combos are there in Legacy"? Quick google search and a few clicked links later and Power Artifact & Grim Monolith seemed like the best of the bunch.

    So, we've got infinite colorless mana...what's the best thing we can do with it? How about instant speed kills? Walking Ballista seems perfect.

    If we're going to be dependent on a 3 card combo, then we need a way to make sure we get the pieces. Enlightened Tutor is a great fit. It gets ANY piece and only costs .

    Finally, some redundancy is always helpful. While there's redundancy on the mana rock (Basalt Monolith), that doesn't do anything else for the deck. There's no redundancy for Power Artifact sadly. So that leaves us with possible redundancy for Walking Ballista.

    There's a few different options you can find on a Gatherer search, and if people are interested I can post the list of the ones I considered. But the standout star of the show is Mindshrieker. This guy TECHNICALLY doesn't give you an instant speed win, but to make up for it, he gives you 2 different options for winning before your opponent does much of anything next turn. Plus he enables a completely different combo on a completely different axis independent of the infinite mana.


    Gameplans

    One of the things I love about this deck is that it has so many viable gameplans that overlap. Topdecking a single card can frequently allow you to shift from one gameplan to another pretty seamlessly.

    Plan A: Grim Monolith + Power Artifact + Walking Ballista (in play or hand) = leathal to the face
    Plan B: Grim Monolith + Power Artifact + Mindshrieker (in hand) = mill their deck, they die on draw step
    Plan C: Grim Monolith + Power Artifact + Mindshrieker (in play) = mill your deck or their deck, swing for lethal
    Plan D: Mindshrieker (in play) + Enlightened Tutor (in hand) = If not blocked, put Draco on top and mill it for a 17/17 flyer
    Plan E: Mindshrieker (in play) + Brainstorm (in hand) + Draco (in hand) = If not blocked, put Draco on top and mill it for a 17/17 flyer
    Plan F: Walking Ballista + Power Artifact = Fast Big Beater
    Plan G: Walking Ballista + Grim Monolith(s)/4+ mana = Slower Big Beater
    Plan H: Mindshrieker + Mana & Hope = Attack with blind flips of your/their deck depending on who should have higher CMC average
    Plan I: Grim Monolith + Power Artifact + Draco = DRACO BEATS!


    Justifying The Slots

    Manabase: This is mostly a mono deck, so basics are good, and 3 Tundra for the white spells (no x) is plenty. Fetches help with brainstorm. 19 seems like the correct number, as you only need 2 or 3 lands to combo off, depending on gameplan. So far I don't feel like I've lost because I didn't have enough land. I will occasionally keep a 1 land hand if it's got 2 cantrips and all the business I need. Otherwise don't keep 1 land hands, and you'll have the 2 lands you need to win, or draw the 3rd in the first few turns anyway.

    Core of the deck: This is mostly explained in the inception and gameplan sections. I think there's a question of whether it's best to go with 4 Mindshrieker and 3 Walking Ballista or visa versa. Walking Ballista lets you go off with only 2 lands (whereas Mindshrieker requires 3 to win same turn you power up the monolith). Right now I'm going 4 Mindshrieker because it overlaps more of the gameplans, and it's pretty rare so far that I only have 2 mana when ready to go off this way. But Walking Ballista is also a removal spell, so I continue to debate.

    Draco: While this is part of the core of the deck, it deserves a bit more of a walk through. I absolutely love when plan D or E can happen. One of my best moments with the deck so far is seemingly punting by playing brainstorm into a Leovold, Emissary of Trest while attacking with Mindshrieker for the win, and having my opponent realize too late they should have Force of Willed my Brainstorm. This one card gives the entire deck a completely different axis to attack on. Has to be him instead of Emrakul, the Aeons Torn because you can't Enlightened Tutor for the spaghetti monster. In updating the list to this latest version I went from 2 Draco down to 1 so I can fit all 4 Ponders. I'm still looking for a way to fit the 2nd back in since it's really bad to be holding Draco and Enlightened Tutor in hand with Mindshrieker on the table unless you have a 2nd to go after. Also a 2nd ups the odds for a hidden Draco finish with brainstorm.

    Brainstorm & Ponder: See Legacy, sub-section Combo decks. :-) But seriously, my earlier iterations of the deck had fewer Ponder, but I'm mostly convinced now that 4 just is the correct number even for this deck.

    Force of Will: Because Storm, Belcher, Reanimator, etc all exist. Also, it's good to be able to push through your combo.

    Pact of Negation: This one is a bit odd looking, I know. However, here's my reasoning. It's pretty common to be ready to go off (or need to go off) when you don't have spare mana for a Spell Pierce/Flusterstorm/etc. Given that we play Grim Monolith, we can start using this spell once a Grim Monolith is down, often T2. This allows us to protect the T2 Grim Monolith by just tapping it plus the mana used to cast it on our next upkeep. So it's a good way to push through the first piece of the combo if needed, and once it's out you can use it to stop them doing something if required. Yes, it's a bit risky...if they have double counter to stop this when you are trying to push through a Grim Monolith, then you could just die. But so far it's not come up for me, and I'd take the rare loss in trade for the number of times it's protected the first combo piece. And it's real primary use is to push through the final combo piece (Power Artifact), which if it lands means you won't even have a next upkeep to consider. The safer option would be Misdirection as it can serve the same purpose, but 7 card disadvantage counterspells seems like a worse idea than the rare case of double counterspell losing you the game. 3 instead of 4 because we'd almost never want to draw more than 1 in a game.

    Swords to Plowshares: Best removal spell in the game. For a while I tried out Path to Exile instead, followed by a split between the two. This was because Swords to Plowshares is a bit of a nonbo with Gameplans D-H. Usually a 17/17 flyer is game over if you've pinged them at all or they fetched a lot, and Swords to Plowshares can give them another turn. However, the ramp you give many decks with Path to Exile does seem worse after having tried it. 3 instead of 4 because we need Draco in the deck and the Walking Ballistas can serve double duty here.

    Standstill: These are really what I consider the flex slots in the deck. I've tried a few different things in these slots. Previously I was trying out Delver of Secrets (deck runs 20 ins/sor, and flipped delver + 17/17 Mindshriker is lethal). While a surprising choice to most people I showed the deck, it wasn't too bad, and gave the deck even more of a backup aggro plan. But ultimately it didn't feel like it did ENOUGH. At Eternal Weekend, I was noticing that my most frequent issue was just running out of gas when they had a few good answers to an early combo/Draco attempt. So for now, the idea is that Standstill will slow the game down so you can sculpt a combo hand with some counter backup, or often just give you the missing piece to combo off if they crack it. Either way, cracking your own standstill, while still a bit risky, is really not too bad given you'll most likely be winning same turn. The Standstills are also a nod to the fact that we are making the opponent's artifact removal an easy 2 for 1 (downside to enchantments), this can help make up for that damage if they get one to stick while Power Artifact is on the stack.


    Sideboard

    Before I went to Eternal Weekend I would say that the sideboard was barely more than a randomly selected set of typical sideboard cards. However, after jamming dozens and dozens of games over the weekend, I feel like this is at least a good starting point. I'd really like to get some more input and refinement on this!

    Leyline of Sanctity: Discard really hurts combo, but actually hurts us a bit less than most combo decks, as we CAN put each piece out one at a time if required. Still this helps against Storm, Burn, and some other stuff to boot. No need for 4 as we can tutor/hardcast if needed. I'm still going for 3 currently, but eventually going down to 2 is do-able if something else is sorely needed.

    Holy Light: This one comes from a suggestion from an opponent at Eternal Weekend. It's amazing against Elves, True Name Nemesis, Young Pyromancer & friends, and a host of other problem creatures. It can hit Mindshriker as well though, so be careful.

    Pithing Needle: Won me multiple games against Lands, but also good against Deathrite Shaman. Most importantly, it can shut down some hate against us like Engineered Explosives, Pernicious Deed, Dack Fayden, and many others. Tutorable.

    Detention Sphere: Good universal removal that has added bonus of taking out multiple copies. Tutorable.

    Seal of Cleansing: Pre-emptive answer to a lot of artifact hate. Tutorable.

    Walking Ballista: For now 4th copy lives here...might go maindeck at some point, but here as extra removal when/if needed.

    Rest in Peace: REALLY shutting down the graveyard is good against a lot of decks.

    Swords to Plowshares: 4th copy lives here for matchups where we want extra removal.

    Ensnaring Bridge: The fact we can still combo off if we have no hand should be exploited when needed. Drop this, play out your hand and nothing can attack. Just topdeck into the combo pieces and still go off to win. Also note, your draw for turn can enable Mindshrieker to attack and then become 17/17.

    Containment Priest: This could be a 2nd Rest in Peace, but seems like a split for this gives a bit more protection against Show and Tell decks.

    What I'm looking For
    I would love to get more ideas and feedback on the deck overall, but especially the sideboard. Eventually I'd love to put together a sideboarding plan for the deck, but it's still way too early for me to say definitively what should go in/out for most matchups.

    If anyone has ideas for minor tweaks to the core slots, I'd love to hear it, as well as any different ideas for the flex slots.

    Finally, if you decide to try out the deck, I'd love to hear how it goes for you. What works, what doesn't work, etc.

    Current Record

    4 Round Swiss Side Event @ Eternal Extravaganza 7: 3-0-1 (ID to split prize payout)
    Legacy Championship @ Eternal Weekend 2017: 1-3 (drop)
    4 Round Swiss Legacy Rebound @ Eternal Weekend 2017: 3-1

    Cumulative Record @ Local Weekly Tournament: 9-5-0


    TL;DR
    I think this is a pretty sweet Combo deck that has multiple combo options, and it gives you a somewhat reasonable backup Aggro plan.
    Last edited by deragun; 11-08-2017 at 03:15 PM.

  2. #2

    Re: Infinite Power

    Quote Originally Posted by deragun View Post
    Earlier this year I rediscovered my love of the game after not playing for the last 15 years or so. I have always loved building interesting decks, and my goal is to build at least 1 reasonably competitive Tier 2 deck.

    I've been brewing around this idea for the past 2-3 months, and at this point I think I've got something good enough to see if others are interested in exploring this idea and see how successful we can make this deck.

    I'll share my current list (which evolved nicely throughout my time at Eternal Weekend) and then give you a small primer. I'll also track my record with the deck at the bottom of this post over time.

    So, without further ado I give you:
    Infinite Power

    //Core Of The Deck
    4 Power Artifact
    4 Grim Monolith
    3 Walking Ballista
    4 Mindshrieker
    4 Enlightened Tutor
    1 Draco

    //Card Filtering
    4 Brainstorm
    4 Ponder

    //Counters & Removal
    4 Force of Will
    3 Pact of Negation
    3 Swords to Plowshares

    //Flex Slots
    3 Standstill

    //Lands
    6 Island
    3 Flooded Strand
    3 Misty Rainforest
    2 Polluted Delta
    2 Scalding Tarn
    3 Tundra

    //Sideboard
    SB: 3 Leyline of Sanctity
    SB: 2 Holy Light
    SB: 2 Pithing Needle
    SB: 2 Detention Sphere
    SB: 1 Seal of Cleansing
    SB: 1 Walking Ballista
    SB: 1 Rest in Peace
    SB: 1 Swords to Plowshares
    SB: 1 Ensnaring Bridge
    SB: 1 Containment Priest




    Inception

    "What infinite mana combos are there in Legacy"? Quick google search and a few clicked links later and Power Artifact & Grim Monolith seemed like the best of the bunch.

    So, we've got infinite colorless mana...what's the best thing we can do with it? How about instant speed kills? Walking Ballista seems perfect.

    If we're going to be dependent on a 3 card combo, then we need a way to make sure we get the pieces. Enlightened Tutor is a great fit. It gets ANY piece and only costs .

    Finally, some redundancy is always helpful. While there's redundancy on the mana rock (Basalt Monolith), that doesn't do anything else for the deck. There's no redundancy for Power Artifact sadly. So that leaves us with possible redundancy for Walking Ballista.

    There's a few different options you can find on a Gatherer search, and if people are interested I can post the list of the ones I considered. But the standout star of the show is Mindshrieker. This guy TECHNICALLY doesn't give you an instant speed win, but to make up for it, he gives you 2 different options for winning before your opponent does much of anything next turn. Plus he enables a completely different combo on a completely different axis independent of the infinite mana.


    Gameplans

    One of the things I love about this deck is that it has so many viable gameplans that overlap. Topdecking a single card can frequently allow you to shift from one gameplan to another pretty seamlessly.

    Plan A: Grim Monolith + Power Artifact + Walking Ballista (in play or hand) = leathal to the face
    Plan B: Grim Monolith + Power Artifact + Mindshrieker (in hand) = mill their deck, they die on draw step
    Plan C: Grim Monolith + Power Artifact + Mindshrieker (in play) = mill your deck or their deck, swing for lethal
    Plan D: Mindshrieker (in play) + Enlightened Tutor (in hand) = If not blocked, put Draco on top and mill it for a 17/17 flyer
    Plan E: Mindshrieker (in play) + Brainstorm (in hand) + Draco (in hand) = If not blocked, put Draco on top and mill it for a 17/17 flyer
    Plan F: Walking Ballista + Power Artifact = Fast Big Beater
    Plan G: Walking Ballista + Grim Monolith(s)/4+ mana = Slower Big Beater
    Plan H: Mindshrieker + Mana & Hope = Attack with blind flips of your/their deck depending on who should have higher CMC average
    Plan I: Grim Monolith + Power Artifact + Draco = DRACO BEATS!


    Justifying The Slots

    Manabase: This is mostly a mono deck, so basics are good, and 3 Tundra for the white spells (no x) is plenty. Fetches help with brainstorm. 19 seems like the correct number, as you only need 2 or 3 lands to combo off, depending on gameplan. So far I don't feel like I've lost because I didn't have enough land. I will occasionally keep a 1 land hand if it's got 2 cantrips and all the business I need. Otherwise don't keep 1 land hands, and you'll have the 2 lands you need to win, or draw the 3rd in the first few turns anyway.

    Core of the deck: This is mostly explained in the inception and gameplan sections. I think there's a question of whether it's best to go with 4 Mindshrieker and 3 Walking Ballista or visa versa. Walking Ballista lets you go off with only 2 lands (whereas Mindshrieker requires 3 to win same turn you power up the monolith). Right now I'm going 4 Mindshrieker because it overlaps more of the gameplans, and it's pretty rare so far that I only have 2 mana when ready to go off this way. But Walking Ballista is also a removal spell, so I continue to debate.

    Draco: While this is part of the core of the deck, it deserves a bit more of a walk through. I absolutely love when plan D or E can happen. One of my best moments with the deck so far is seemingly punting by playing brainstorm into a Leovold, Emissary of Trest while attacking with Mindshrieker for the win, and having my opponent realize too late they should have Force of Willed my Brainstorm. This one card gives the entire deck a completely different axis to attack on. Has to be him instead of Emrakul, the Aeons Torn because you can't Enlightened Tutor for the spaghetti monster. In updating the list to this latest version I went from 2 Draco down to 1 so I can fit all 4 Ponders. I'm still looking for a way to fit the 2nd back in since it's really bad to be holding Draco and Enlightened Tutor in hand with Mindshrieker on the table unless you have a 2nd to go after. Also a 2nd ups the odds for a hidden Draco finish with brainstorm.

    Brainstorm & Ponder: See Legacy, sub-section Combo decks. :-) But seriously, my earlier iterations of the deck had fewer Ponder, but I'm mostly convinced now that 4 just is the correct number even for this deck.

    Force of Will: Because Storm, Belcher, Reanimator, etc all exist. Also, it's good to be able to push through your combo.

    Pact of Negation: This one is a bit odd looking, I know. However, here's my reasoning. It's pretty common to be ready to go off (or need to go off) when you don't have spare mana for a Spell Pierce/Flusterstorm/etc. Given that we play Grim Monolith, we can start using this spell once a Grim Monolith is down, often T2. This allows us to protect the T2 Grim Monolith by just tapping it plus the mana used to cast it on our next upkeep. So it's a good way to push through the first piece of the combo if needed, and once it's out you can use it to stop them doing something if required. Yes, it's a bit risky...if they have double counter to stop this when you are trying to push through a Grim Monolith, then you could just die. But so far it's not come up for me, and I'd take the rare loss in trade for the number of times it's protected the first combo piece. And it's real primary use is to push through the final combo piece (Power Artifact), which if it lands means you won't even have a next upkeep to consider. The safer option would be Misdirection as it can serve the same purpose, but 7 card disadvantage counterspells seems like a worse idea than the rare case of double counterspell losing you the game. 3 instead of 4 because we'd almost never want to draw more than 1 in a game.

    Swords to Plowshares: Best removal spell in the game. For a while I tried out Path to Exile instead, followed by a split between the two. This was because Swords to Plowshares is a bit of a nonbo with Gameplans D-H. Usually a 17/17 flyer is game over if you've pinged them at all or they fetched a lot, and Swords to Plowshares can give them another turn. However, the ramp you give many decks with Path to Exile does seem worse after having tried it. 3 instead of 4 because we need Draco in the deck and the Walking Ballistas can serve double duty here.

    Standstill: These are really what I consider the flex slots in the deck. I've tried a few different things in these slots. Previously I was trying out Delver of Secrets (deck runs 20 ins/sor, and flipped delver + 17/17 Mindshriker is lethal). While a surprising choice to most people I showed the deck, it wasn't too bad, and gave the deck even more of a backup aggro plan. But ultimately it didn't feel like it did ENOUGH. At Eternal Weekend, I was noticing that my most frequent issue was just running out of gas when they had a few good answers to an early combo/Draco attempt. So for now, the idea is that Standstill will slow the game down so you can sculpt a combo hand with some counter backup, or often just give you the missing piece to combo off if they crack it. Either way, cracking your own standstill, while still a bit risky, is really not too bad given you'll most likely be winning same turn. The Standstills are also a nod to the fact that we are making the opponent's artifact removal an easy 2 for 1 (downside to enchantments), this can help make up for that damage if they get one to stick while Power Artifact is on the stack.


    Sideboard

    Before I went to Eternal Weekend I would say that the sideboard was barely more than a randomly selected set of typical sideboard cards. However, after jamming dozens and dozens of games over the weekend, I feel like this is at least a good starting point. I'd really like to get some more input and refinement on this!

    Leyline of Sanctity: Discard really hurts combo, but actually hurts us a bit less than most combo decks, as we CAN put each piece out one at a time if required. Still this helps against Storm, Burn, and some other stuff to boot. No need for 4 as we can tutor/hardcast if needed. I'm still going for 3 currently, but eventually going down to 2 is do-able if something else is sorely needed.

    Holy Light: This one comes from a suggestion from an opponent at Eternal Weekend. It's amazing against Elves, True Name Nemesis, Young Pyromancer & friends, and a host of other problem creatures. It can hit Mindshriker as well though, so be careful.

    Pithing Needle: Won me multiple games against Lands, but also good against Deathrite Shaman. Most importantly, it can shut down some hate against us like Engineered Explosives, Pernicious Deed, Dack Fayden, and many others. Tutorable.

    Detention Sphere: Good universal removal that has added bonus of taking out multiple copies. Tutorable.

    Seal of Cleansing: Pre-emptive answer to a lot of artifact hate. Tutorable.

    Walking Ballista: For now 4th copy lives here...might go maindeck at some point, but here as extra removal when/if needed.

    Rest in Peace: REALLY shutting down the graveyard is good against a lot of decks.

    Swords to Plowshares: 4th copy lives here for matchups where we want extra removal.

    Ensnaring Bridge: The fact we can still combo off if we have no hand should be exploited when needed. Drop this, play out your hand and nothing can attack. Just topdeck into the combo pieces and still go off to win. Also note, your draw for turn can enable Mindshrieker to attack and then become 17/17.

    Containment Priest: This could be a 2nd Rest in Peace, but seems like a split for this gives a bit more protection against Show and Tell decks.

    What I'm looking For
    I would love to get more ideas and feedback on the deck overall, but especially the sideboard. Eventually I'd love to put together a sideboarding plan for the deck, but it's still way too early for me to say definitively what should go in/out for most matchups.

    If anyone has ideas for minor tweaks to the core slots, I'd love to hear it, as well as any different ideas for the flex slots.

    Finally, if you decide to try out the deck, I'd love to hear how it goes for you. What works, what doesn't work, etc.

    Current Record

    4 Round Swiss Side Event @ Eternal Extravaganza 7: 3-0-1 (ID to split prize payout)
    Legacy Championship @ Eternal Weekend 2017: 1-3 (drop)
    4 Round Swiss Legacy Rebound @ Eternal Weekend 2017: 3-1

    Cumulative Record @ Local Weekly Tournament: 8-4-0


    TL;DR
    I think this is a pretty sweet Combo deck that has multiple combo options, and it gives you a somewhat reasonable backup Aggro plan.
    This old school combo is really sweet but i think it has some weaknesses. First off, the combo can be two-for-oned by disenchant (to continue on the old school theme).
    Second it's a three card combo (two cards played, one card in hand) while there's two card combos, i.e. show and tell. So from a competivive point of view why would you play this instead (except it being fun to play and you get to play power artifact)?
    I know that's a boring critisism but somebody's got to say it :)

    Your combo is not awefully slow, fastest being T2 grim, T3 Power artifact (which is Daze and pierce-proof) but the need to three cards may make it slower.
    You are pretty easily vurnerable to discard and permanent hate (i.e. null rod). For that reason i belive you should consider spell pierce over pacts. Not all interaction are taking place on your fundamental turn.
    I like that you have many avenues to victory, many of them tutorable with enlightened tutor. I do Think 4 of them may be too many. They are card disadvantage, which may not matter if you can go off, but may hurt you if your first combo-attempt gets stopped.
    I dont see the place for standstill at all. You say that you can slow down your opponent, and that is true. But you cannot sculpt a hand under standstill - you are bound by your topdecks just as your opponent. Chances are opponent break it to play a hate-piece or discard and you cant even counter it due to playing PACTs. Standstill doesn't put up results as being a good draw-engine even in decks that are built around it.
    I also see a problem with splashing for a color to fight fair decks. Splashing for a color to fight combo decks is generally no problem, since they don't play wasteland (that's why UW Control can splash red for redblasts, but not for Lightning bolt). Splashing White for swords (with only tundra to cast it) means that you may not have a white source when you want to use your plow. I suggest you play a plains for this reason. Versus the decks you need White, you also need a reliable source of White mana.

    Now onto the sideboard. Being blue and playing many basic lands you could play back to basics, that's a card that slows down a bunch of decks (but you need that plains if you wanna play B2B).
    I don't Believe Holy light is good enough. It costs three mana, kills a few elves, sure, but doesn't do anything against death n taxes (except killing revokers) which is the main deck you want sweepers against. I think i would rather play supreme verdict as a sweeper, or engineered explosives.
    Your sideboard signficantly lacks graveyard-hate. I dont see you having any chance against a reaniamtor deck. Perhabs a number of surgical plus RIP (that you can tutor for) and the containment priests would do?
    If you really want to play leyline i think you might wanna play 4 to increase the chance of pre-game effects.
    Not sure how your combo match-up seems, but on paper it looks bad. Maybe you can fit a White planeswalker to board into versus slow decks to give you another angle of attack (that does not die to red blast).
    Finally, lots of decks play 2x fluster storm in the board. It's great both as anti-combo card and can be boarded in to fight discard and opposing countermagic.

    Hope some of this was helpful.

  3. #3
    The crazy nastyass honey badger

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    Re: Infinite Power

    A lot of the plans lean on having 2 4-offs that are answered with relative ease (i.e. in a multitude of ways using several cheap cards). I don't see this being consistent enough to perform constantly (since it has a single point of failure) or robust enough to fight through mana denial strategies (i.e. Wasteland, Stifle, Daze/FoW). Furthermore, the 4 FoWs aren't enough to defend you against fast(er) combo decks.

    I'm sorry, but I don't think this is going to work. There are just too many holes and too few strengths.
    Quote Originally Posted by cavalrywolfpack View Post
    DAMMIT ECHELON

  4. #4
    Member

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    Re: Infinite Power

    Quote Originally Posted by JackaBo View Post
    This old school combo is really sweet but i think it has some weaknesses. First off, the combo can be two-for-oned by disenchant (to continue on the old school theme).
    Second it's a three card combo (two cards played, one card in hand) while there's two card combos, i.e. show and tell. So from a competivive point of view why would you play this instead (except it being fun to play and you get to play power artifact)?
    I know that's a boring critisism but somebody's got to say it :)

    Your combo is not awefully slow, fastest being T2 grim, T3 Power artifact (which is Daze and pierce-proof) but the need to three cards may make it slower.
    You are pretty easily vurnerable to discard and permanent hate (i.e. null rod). For that reason i belive you should consider spell pierce over pacts. Not all interaction are taking place on your fundamental turn.
    I like that you have many avenues to victory, many of them tutorable with enlightened tutor. I do Think 4 of them may be too many. They are card disadvantage, which may not matter if you can go off, but may hurt you if your first combo-attempt gets stopped.
    I dont see the place for standstill at all. You say that you can slow down your opponent, and that is true. But you cannot sculpt a hand under standstill - you are bound by your topdecks just as your opponent. Chances are opponent break it to play a hate-piece or discard and you cant even counter it due to playing PACTs. Standstill doesn't put up results as being a good draw-engine even in decks that are built around it.
    I also see a problem with splashing for a color to fight fair decks. Splashing for a color to fight combo decks is generally no problem, since they don't play wasteland (that's why UW Control can splash red for redblasts, but not for Lightning bolt). Splashing White for swords (with only tundra to cast it) means that you may not have a white source when you want to use your plow. I suggest you play a plains for this reason. Versus the decks you need White, you also need a reliable source of White mana.

    Now onto the sideboard. Being blue and playing many basic lands you could play back to basics, that's a card that slows down a bunch of decks (but you need that plains if you wanna play B2B).
    I don't Believe Holy light is good enough. It costs three mana, kills a few elves, sure, but doesn't do anything against death n taxes (except killing revokers) which is the main deck you want sweepers against. I think i would rather play supreme verdict as a sweeper, or engineered explosives.
    Your sideboard signficantly lacks graveyard-hate. I dont see you having any chance against a reaniamtor deck. Perhabs a number of surgical plus RIP (that you can tutor for) and the containment priests would do?
    If you really want to play leyline i think you might wanna play 4 to increase the chance of pre-game effects.
    Not sure how your combo match-up seems, but on paper it looks bad. Maybe you can fit a White planeswalker to board into versus slow decks to give you another angle of attack (that does not die to red blast).
    Finally, lots of decks play 2x fluster storm in the board. It's great both as anti-combo card and can be boarded in to fight discard and opposing countermagic.

    Hope some of this was helpful.

    Thanks for the reply! Definitely some good things to think about in your feedback.

    Regarding the ease of 2-for-1, it's definitely a downside that's inherent to the deck. That's a primary reason I'm playing 7 'free' counterspells to protect it / push it through. I'll make no claim that this is a better deck than Sneak & Show, but my reason for playing it over S&S is that this deck can operate on a few different axes. It's got multiple 3 card combos, and the Mindshrieker + Enlightened Tutor gameplan as a 2 card combo. It's the variety of 3 card combos that aren't all on the same axis that I think makes this at least better than a standard all-in 3 card combo.

    I'm collecting various data points on my games, but I haven't logged most of them into my spreadsheet yet. Once I do I'll post some of the interesting data from it. But you are correct, currently the ideal scenario would be a T3 combo. I COULD adjust the deck to have the possibility of a T2 combo (lotus petals), but that just seems like living in magical Christmas land with a 4 card combo, and the petals would do nothing else.

    I feel like the deck is slightly more resilient to discard than most combo decks (again multiple axes helps, as does the fact any of the combos can be played through pure topdecking if required). But you have a very good point with the interaction not all happening on my fundamental turn. Any counters make it more likely I need to wait till T4 to have 3 to go off, but having more early interaction might just be worth it. I'll try out this swap tonight and see how it goes.

    I'm more resistant to reducing the Enlightened Tutor though. No argument that it is card disadvantage, but in many games I end up needing 2. Either it takes a reload after the first combo attempt, or the infinite mana combo doesn't go through and I use the 2nd to go for the mindshrieker kill. I'll try to keep an eye on how often I get one that I don't need in a game, but it hasn't seemed like that happens very often at all so far.

    I'm not completely sold on the Standstill, but there are some aspects of it that I do like. Other options I'm considering are just going up to 4 swords, 4 ballista, and 2nd Draco. Or try out 3 Training Grounds to go more aggro with the creature suite. Or look at other 1 or 2 CMC counters/permission and go a bit more control during the early game.


    SIDEBOARD

    I've considered Engineered Explosives but given that I can really only do it for 0 or 1 it doesn't seem great. I'd neglected to consider Supreme Verdict because of the double . So far I've avoided a Plains since it's a dead land for Power Artifact, however, if I'm accepting a slightly slower plan for the Spell Pierce, then it would likely also make sense to accept the same for the Plains. And that would make Supreme Verdict much more doable.

    B2B was in my sideboard in the very early iterations of the deck and I felt it was just too slow, and interfered with my Tundras too much. But if I'm putting in the Plains it might make sense to re-examine.

    I'm ok with the 3 leyline because I can hard cast them if needed. But I'll need to reconsider their need overall with the switch to Spell Pierce as they might lose enough utility against discard with the Pierces as a maindeck answer that other things might be better.

    I've only played against Reanimator once with this deck, and it did in fact go very poorly. I've got the 1 RIP in the side already. I think that Ensnaring Bridge is ok, but not great, given that I can T2 drop it with a Monolith. I'll consider further changes for graveyard based match ups after seeing how things adjust with the Spell Pierce/Plains updates.


    Also, on a side note, I'm trying out a pair of Welding Jars as general anti-hate. As long as I have 1 mana open it should be able to stop the vast majority of hate that can 2-for-1 me in the middle of going off.

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