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Thread: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

  1. #61
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    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    Yeah, that was me. Decided to give it a try. First challenge I've ever played actually. Lost round 1 to turn 1 BR reanimator draws in 2 games and then lost my win and in against miracles in 3 games. Went 5-2. I do feel like the deck needs some SB hate against miracles. Otherwise it had been performing really well lately.

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  2. #62

    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    Ah, congrats. In my experience Miracles is quite an easy matchup, though I do load up on pierces which shut down a lot of their scarier draws like early counterbalance and/or jace. Lately I've been playing a few Lingering Souls in the board and they would also help.

  3. #63
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    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    I actually stole a little tech from a guy I saw streaming and playing the miracles mirror. He was playing palace jailer in the board. They are ridiculously good in the miracles match up because they just don't have many threats. If you stick a jailer your are likely drawing an extra card the rest of the game as long as you can control their 3-4 cards that actually can do combat damage. Hope much discard are you playing?


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  4. #64

    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    Hey all, recently put together this deck. I am really liking it, but I am finding the sac outlets for arena rector are a little light. I find myself always digging and digging. Anyone else find this? Trying to think up some extra sac outlets that don't weigh the deck down.

    Incredibly tempted to try something like viscera seer, or splash green for evolutionary leap. Just some thoughts.

  5. #65
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    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    throwing my .02 in here and this deck just screams nic fit. Not sure why it's being jammed into blue. Your combo color's aren't blue. This deck revolves around 7 cards that I'm seeing. 4 rector and the 3 planes walker targets for it. Nic fit can make this deck work faster, provide alternate win cons, and naturally support it with the creature base and sac outlets. It can also hard cast planeswalkers in a bind.

    Also, this seems either too slow or not powerful enough for legacy meta, but it does seem like it would do alright in modern.
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  6. #66
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    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    @guitarnewf: I get what you are saying. My original iteration of the deck had more of a split of creature removal such as edict and fatal push so that I could target rector. At this point though with 14 cantrips I can usually find a sac outlet. One card I did consider was diabolic intent but you would probably have to increase your creature count to make it viable. I don't think I would add another color though. There's plenty in Black to send rector to the bin.

    @apple: I think we are all well aware of the nic fit build using arena rector and frankly it sucks. Sure blue isn't in the colors of the combo but the same could be said about storm. Brainstorm, ponder and force are pretty strong cards and there is a reason they are the backbone of most combo decks in legacy. Also, this deck often plays more as a control deck. Cantrips allow you to find the cards you need, including your combo pieces. Nic fit is just a different deck and in my opinion is just too fragile and not consistent enough.

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  7. #67
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    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    So in case anyone still has interest in this type of deck, Andrea Mengucci ran a somewhat similar list in his Channel Fireball YouTube video here: https://youtu.be/oaoqc6dARfg

    This is more of a Miracles build of the deck running more countermagic over thoughtseize main along with Terminus and a Counterbalance in the main. He is not running baleful strix. Sounds like he got the list from somewhere else where someone finished high at a tournament with the deck. Honestly, I can get behind this build as strix has not been good lately. It does cantrip but does not act very well in defense. There is so much creature removal in the format now that it just never gets a chance to block. So, I'm going to port over to a similar Miracles list and see how that runs. I still however like one copy of Lim-Dul's Vault in the main as it has been really really good for me. He is also playing NB, God Pharaoh over NB, Planewalker which I just hate. It's better against STORM decks, but that's about it.
    Also, I think the new Teferi will also be good in the list. It will allow us to combo off without pesky counterspells or surgicals getting in the way. It will also let us terminus at instant speed on our opponent's turn off of a ponder or preordain, and it will bounce troublesome permanents so that we can therapy them away. Looking forward to this upgrade.

    I think after the new set comes out, my list will look something like this:

    // Esper Rector

    // 60 Maindeck

    // 6 Creature
    2 Snapcaster Mage
    3 Arena Rector
    1 Monastery Mentor

    // 12 Instant
    4 Brainstorm
    4 Force of Will
    3 Swords to Plowshares
    1 Lim-Dul's Vault
    1 Spell Pierce

    // 16 Sorcery
    4 Ponder
    4 Cabal Therapy
    4 Preordain
    3 Terminus

    // 1 Enchantment
    1 Counterbalance

    // 5 Planeswalker
    2 Teferi, Time Raveler
    1 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
    1 Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker
    1 Ugin, the Spirit Dragon

    // 20 Land
    4 Flooded Strand
    3 Island
    1 Phyrexian Tower
    1 Plains
    4 Polluted Delta
    1 Scrubland
    1 Swamp
    2 Tundra
    1 Underground Sea
    1 Cavern of Souls
    1 Volcanic Island

    SB is still a work in progress and will depend on how the meta shapes up after the new set. I have actually been play Leyline of Sanctity in the board and with the new mulligan rule it's not bad. I know it won't be a popular choice for most people though. Anyway, interesting to see some pros take on the deck. Admittedly I was really have a hard time with hoard decks like goblins and such but hopefully the 3 terminus main will help those match-ups. We shall see.

  8. #68

    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    The list Mengucci played in the veedio is one that top 8'd the recent Legacy Premier on MTGO.

    https://www.mtggoldfish.com/deck/1787530#paper

    I'm not a fan of some of the choices, particularly the sideboard, but it's overall fairly similar to some of the lists I've run. I agree it's a pure mistake to play Bolas GP instead of Bolas Planeswalker, it makes no sense really and somewhat explains why the pilot claimed S&S is a really hard matchup for them. I haven't had any opportunities to play in the past few months, but I'm looking forward to trying out my stoneblade hybrid version soon, as well as giving the miracles style build a try again too after this result.

  9. #69

    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    This one got 9th in the recent challenge:

    https://www.mtggoldfish.com/deck/1831184#paper

    I like the Ancient Tomb, wonder how it worked out. Some matchups it can be really difficult to get to 4 mana.

  10. #70
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    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    So he basically cut one preordain for the 1 x ancient tomb. Yeah, the mana acceleration would be nice. Although it usually takes me at least 3-4 turns to find everything I need. It's basically a 2 -card combo with arena rector and a way to sac it.
    I have been playing with the deck a decent amount and it really is performing well. I don't want to get in too deep until the next set comes out. I will definitely be adding 2 x teferi and 2 x thoughtseize to the main. Going up on Teferi and thoughtseizing at the end of opponent's draw step seems decent.

    I have also been playing 4 x leyline of sanctity online and it has over-performed. Again, probably wouldn't play them without the London mulligan rule in effect. But they really swing the grixis control match up heavily in our favor. I'm also still on 1 x lim-dul's vault and only playing 1 x mentor. I like that configuration as the vault gets you anything you need and is amazing at setting up a terminus when needed. It is card disadvantage though, like an tutor, so I'm still only on one. I'll see where I'm at in 2 weeks.

  11. #71

    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    Played at our weekly legacy event last night. Went with the esper shell that's been discussed on the last couple of pages. Ended up splitting for first place.

    Round 1
    Nic Fit

    Ended up going 2-0. Early hand disruption, baleful strix put in the work until I landed arena rectors both games. Game two I took his huntmaster of the fells with nico bolas, and ugin on board.

    Round 2
    Pox

    2-0. First game nico gets out to destroy ensnaring bridge, and then works on his lands. game two, he played lost legacy, taking my rectors. I hard cast jace, after fowing two liliana's. Jace's uptick controls the deck while he had no cards in hand.

    Round 3
    Grixis delver

    1-1-1. This match went to time. First game got ugin out, next turn, ugin uptick to hit my second rector, get bolas, take his gurmag. Game two, rector gets countered, proceeded to get mana flooded, and died to a single delver. Game three, he surgicals my rectors, but we ended up going to turns. Sword his pyro, he can't make enough tokens in time to kill me in turns. I couldn't hit any disruption or fows in the third game.


    I need more thoughtsieze. Deck felt great against grixis, shut off all his creature removal due to rector. Stop the surgicals, and I can't see grixis being a big trouble for the deck.

  12. #72
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    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    Can you share your list?

    How many rectors? How many baleful strixes?
    Terminus or not? Counterbalance of not?

  13. #73

    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Headshot View Post
    Can you share your list?

    How many rectors? How many baleful strixes?
    Terminus or not? Counterbalance of not?
    Sure. No terminus, and no counterbalance.

    3x Arena Rector
    3x Baleful Strix
    4x Brainstorm (MMQ)
    4x Cabal Therapy (JUD)
    4x Flooded Strand (ONS)
    4x Force of Will (ALL)
    1x Inquisition of Kozilek (ROE)
    3x Island (LEA)
    1x Jace, the Mind Sculptor (WWK)
    1x Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker (CON)
    1x Phyrexian Tower (USG)
    2x Plains (LEA)
    4x Polluted Delta (ONS)
    4x Ponder (M12)
    1x gurmag angler
    1x lim-dul's vault
    1x Scrubland (3ED)
    1x search for azcanta
    2x Snapcaster Mage (ISD)
    2x Spell Pierce (ZEN) *F*
    1x Swamp (LEA)
    4x Swords to Plowshares (3ED)
    2x Thoughtseize (THS)
    1x Tundra (3ED)
    1x karakas
    1x Ugin, the Spirit Dragon
    1x Underground Sea (3ED)
    1x Vindicate
    1x Volcanic Island


    Sidedboard:

    1 nico bolas, god pharoah
    1 gideon
    1 toxic deluge
    2 monastery mentor
    1 gurmag
    2 surgical extraction
    2 silent graveyard
    1 supreme verdict
    2 disenchant
    2 flusterstorm

    I really want to up to 4 thoughtsieze, and keep the fows for the arena play. Maybe add a cavern of souls. I need to play around with the list more. So many different esper control shells out there. Can really taylor it to your meta.

    ***EDIT: 2 preordain was in the first version. I sinced changed it to a gurmag, and lim-dul's vault, main board.***

  14. #74
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    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    Quote Originally Posted by Guitarnewf View Post
    Played at our weekly legacy event last night. Went with the esper shell that's been discussed on the last couple of pages. Ended up splitting for first place.

    Round 1
    Nic Fit

    Ended up going 2-0. Early hand disruption, baleful strix put in the work until I landed arena rectors both games. Game two I took his huntmaster of the fells with nico bolas, and ugin on board.

    Round 2
    Pox

    2-0. First game nico gets out to destroy ensnaring bridge, and then works on his lands. game two, he played lost legacy, taking my rectors. I hard cast jace, after fowing two liliana's. Jace's uptick controls the deck while he had no cards in hand.

    Round 3
    Grixis delver

    1-1-1. This match went to time. First game got ugin out, next turn, ugin uptick to hit my second rector, get bolas, take his gurmag. Game two, rector gets countered, proceeded to get mana flooded, and died to a single delver. Game three, he surgicals my rectors, but we ended up going to turns. Sword his pyro, he can't make enough tokens in time to kill me in turns. I couldn't hit any disruption or fows in the third game.


    I need more thoughtsieze. Deck felt great against grixis, shut off all his creature removal due to rector. Stop the surgicals, and I can't see grixis being a big trouble for the deck.
    In your list, you have an *F* next to spell pierce. Is this like a grade for the card? Angler is kinda interesting. Not sure I love it but I understand why you decided to go with it. What is Karakas for? Just opponent's legendary creatures?
    How have strix been? I personally have moved away from them on to the Terminus just because it A: blanks their creature removal even more and B: strix was just so fragile for me.
    New Teferi does shut off surgical. It also makes thoughtseize better because you can play it at end of opponent's draw step at instant speed. The only I have noticed is that it is a little fragile and it is much better when you are already ahead on board or at least stabilized on board. Something else to try.

    Deck is still a lot of fun and quite competitive.

  15. #75

    Re: Esper Arena Rector (Esper friends/Esper gladiators)

    Quote Originally Posted by drude1 View Post
    In your list, you have an *F* next to spell pierce. Is this like a grade for the card? Angler is kinda interesting. Not sure I love it but I understand why you decided to go with it. What is Karakas for? Just opponent's legendary creatures?
    How have strix been? I personally have moved away from them on to the Terminus just because it A: blanks their creature removal even more and B: strix was just so fragile for me.
    New Teferi does shut off surgical. It also makes thoughtseize better because you can play it at end of opponent's draw step at instant speed. The only I have noticed is that it is a little fragile and it is much better when you are already ahead on board or at least stabilized on board. Something else to try.

    Deck is still a lot of fun and quite competitive.

    The F is foil. I copied it from my tappedout profile, haha. That single Gurmag has done so much for me that it will stay mainboard. It's turned games around that I shouldn't have won. People focus on the rector, that when they get countered, feeds the angler, and they have no removal or counters left for him.

    Strix has been great. My meta is filled with a lot of delver, and other nuisance flyers. I always leave them up for blocking, and a couple of times I have flashbacked a therapy, saccing the strix to name surgical, to clear the way for rector off phyrexian tower. I find strix such a great utility, and since I don't play the preordain, it's card advantage at worse. If it gets countered, one less counter to worry about for rector. If it doesn't, block all day long, or eat removal. It's a great card.

    Karakas is there for opponents. A lot of legendary creatures in my meta, and he works great with gideon as well. Animate gideon, swing, bounce him with karakas to avoid removal, or to play him again, and plus him to add a token in the second main phase. Great little trick.

    I will be testing 4 thoughtseize, and the new teferi for sure. Also looking at the new bolas, as he is hard castable. I have also tested the older ashiok, which is a pet card of mine, I love it. I have managed to exile griselbrand, and take him for myself a couple of time with her. Few cards in the new set I will be trying.

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