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Thread: [DTB] Vial Goblins

  1. #1
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    [DTB] Vial Goblins

    A deck which has defined Legacy for most of it's existence, Vial Goblins is likely to remain a strong tournament choice until combo and hate can bring it's presence to lower levels.


    //Tempo Generators
    4 AEther Vial
    4 Goblin Lackey
    4 Goblin Warchief

    //Removal
    4 Mogg Fanatic
    4 Gempalm Incinerator

    //Draw Engine
    4 Goblin Matron
    4 Goblin Ringleader

    //Damage
    4 Goblin Piledriver
    2 Siege-Gang Commander

    //Land Destruction
    4 Wasteland
    4 Rishadan Port

    //Mana
    4 Bloodstained Mire
    4 Wooded Foothills
    5 Mountain
    2 Mountain/Red Dual

    //Open slots
    3 X


    For the open slots, many players run artifact removal in the form of Goblin Tinkerer or Tin-Street Hooligan. Other such potential cards are Goblin Sharpshooter, Pyrokinesis, Siege-Gang Commander, or the 24th land. In splash versions, this slot has also been Swords to Plowshares, Disenchant, or Cabal Therapy. There are several choices for the sideboard: Red Elemental Blast, Pyrokinesis, Chalice of the Void, Tormod's Crypt, Pyrostatic Pillar, Pithing Needle, Krosan Grip, etc. Which of these you choose basically depends on the meta, but strong anti-hate and anti-combo elements are usually always necessary.

    Much has been written about this deck in reports and articles (one more coming next month), so I won't repeat that discussion.

    Modern Goblins Primer, Part I
    Deck History
    Old Source Thread


    Some basic matchup analysis:

    Goblins is just over parity against Threshold, but UGR with 4 Pyroclasms post-board can be tough. White threshold is usually easier to handle, as WW is easier to stop (for Tividar's Crusade).

    Goblins also has tough matchups with RGB Survival and B/R Suicide, again due to very strong hate such as Pyroclasm and Engineered Plague. These weapons are one reason why Goblins' numbers have been dropping (slowly, but) steadily.

    Goblins can have a strong post-board anti-combo game, but this depends on having relevant draws and a strong sideboard. Goblins will lose a lot of game 1s to combo, especially Tendrils-based decks.

    Goblins has very little trouble dealing with most Control decks. Those not blue-based have advantages since they can deploy better hate, but for the most part control does not have strong tools against this deck.


    The big questions for this deck's future:

    - What anti-combo elements are most consistent and effective for use in this deck?
    - How can hate be reliably dealt with when it's in basically every single sideboard?
    - Are new strategies necessary to outmaneuver ever-developing technology?
    Last edited by Machinus; 04-28-2007 at 02:22 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Eldariel, Tranquil Domain is a good card, however, having more outs against decks with Artifacts makes Grip the better choice in my opinion. Plagues hurt, but not bad enough to the point where you would need extra hate in. Grip is extremely versatile. Patron came in on so many of my matchups, and helped against pyroclasm, infest, swords, burn, basically good against almost any form of removal aside of mass removal. Tranquil Domain is awesome against enchantress, wombat, multiple plagues, as well as other decks. Grip may not be quite as good in these particular matchups, but is much better in most matchups. The reason I took out the two Patron of the Akki's from my board is because the 4th grip is about as good against plague as patron, it kills chill, and it will most likely help more in general. The 4th Pillar gives a better combo match, and helps a lot against most decks running plague, aside from Red Death. Also I will note that I hate the list they have up reaaaaally bad. I don't like only 2 taiga, you would have to run a minimum of three, I prefer 4 with 6 fetch lands total (mires over foothills, Most players will name wooded foothills with needle). I would definitely run 3 siege gang at the GP, no less. 2 MD Tin street is excellent and I wish I had room for a third.
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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Awesomator, what is your reasoning behind 3x Pyrokinesis SB rather than the full set? For reference I'd been running 3x Pyrostatic Pillar which IMO is a much weaker anti-combo weapon than Chalice. Otherwise, my decklist is the same as yours.

  4. #4

    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    How good is Pillar against Tendrils? Pillar alone can't stop the opponent from using Tendrils to win, since IGG and Tendris are 4cc, aggro needs to do 4 more damage just for the soft lock, and that gives Tendrils the time to Brainstorm and Burning Wish for Diminishing Returns or at least Brainstorm with out suffering damage.

    It doesn't seem to be significant against Tendrils with out a clock cast on the first turn, and even then that clock is going to be hard pressed to do 4 damage before turn 3. Is there something I'm missing here? Wastelands and Rishadan Ports? Rishadan Port doesn't seem to be fast enough, considering Pillar is a 2 drop, and Wasteland has to be used on turn one, setting back the Pillar to turn 3, or after the Pillar is cast, which is the same as Rishadan Port.

    Granted, the opponent could do 2 points of damage to himself with his lands or have Plunge into Darkness, but is that something that Goblins should count on?

    Wouldn't something along the lines of Leyline of the Void be better in the SB? It gives Goblins a double Time Walk for Tendrils to answer it, or it forces them to go for Diminishing Returns or Empty the Warrens, the first of which is random and the second of which isn't a win condition against aggro with out the first. Uncounterable 4cc discard pile hate is also solid in the Threshold match up, where it can't be prevented with their counter wall or removed with their Engineered Explosives, and it's bound to be useful against Reanimator or the rewording of Flash etc.

    Pillar just seems to be a hold over from High Tide, where turn 4 and Storm 20 turned it into a hard lock, but Goblins can race High Tide and board in Red Elemental Blast as it is.

    So, what's so great about Pillar? How is it being used to stop Tendrils?

  5. #5
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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Pillar is used for its versatility. Its a monster against Loam decks which are generally a bad match for you. Its great against thresh since everything in the deck aside from Enforcer will deal them 2 damage. Its great against combo since its a 2 drop. All the other anti combo in red/green/white is three mana or more aside from Orims Chant which is bad since you dont want to keep mana open waiting for combo. Its never ever easy for tendrils to combo out with Pillar on the board, they need to think about each spell before leading up to tendrils. It requires them to use tendrils instead of warrens, and requires they follow up a non lethal tendrils with a lethal one. 2 Pillars is usually gg and Pillar + CotV is also end game. The versatility of an enchantment hate card is also a nice option since your opponent needs an answer to enchantments, not just creatures and artifacts.
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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    @Bardu- I don't run the full set of pyrokinesis, because Most aggro decks are already good/decent matchups. Tin Street is a huge deal in the Gob matchup. Focusing more on bad matchups is much more important imo. Goblins is very hard to play, and few can play it right, so when i play the mirror I try to take full advantage of the mistakes my opponents are making.

    @breathweapon- Tendrils is not going to be a huge percentage of the field man, you really need to understand this. If I were to run leyline, I would actually need to dedicate a lot of the sb to it. Pillar helps with morebad or even matchups than Leyline. I would need to have leyline in my opening hand or else it's useless. Thresh is already a good matchup, but Leyline would help vs loam based control decks (which pillar already does). Pillar is good against decks more on the control side running E plague. Pillar is even good to just squeeze damage in. 2 pillars isn't always GG, but it is automatically at least 8 damage in, and that's if they have it in their hand. If a player doesn't have a burning wish in hand it is probably a definite GG, and if they get it off with tranquility, then they need to also be able to combo out and find another tutor if they didn't have two. There are much much better choices against tendrils than Pillar, however, Pillar helps in many matchups, and a versatile sideboard will take you a long way.
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  7. #7

    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Considering the number of combo decks in the field is irrelevant when I'm the one using the combo deck; I just want to know whether or not Pillar is even a concern, since I've never lost to it in a tournament or encountered it online. Other people using Tendrils just seem to lose to Pillar because they're terrible; Burning Wish for an answer is pointless, because the deck can just Burning Wish for Diminishing Returns and go for it.

    I understand Pillar is used because it affects Threshold as well as Aggro-Loam, but so does Leyline of the Void, and that card crushes Threshold and Aggro-Loam; it's turn zero, it's uncounterable, it's free, it's permanent, it's difficult to remove and it permits aggressive mulligans.

    Just in testing, I haven't lost a game 3, assuming I win game 1 and lose game 2, against their turn one Lackey and turn two Pillar; 2 drops just don't seem to be good enough when you're on the draw, and counting on Pillar, Pillar or Pillar, Chalice is weak, because the odds aren't good, and they're still boarding in Shattering Spree and wishing for Hull Breach.

    I'd just rather use something that is more consistent in that slot, Leyline of the Void pushes them into Diminishing Returns and Empty the Warrens, so you could board in Goblin Sharpshooters and take advantage of their plan B.

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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Leyline is a much better card against you, but pillar can still do the trick. A lot of players misboard and get less aggressive against Combo. Don't go by results of players online, they are almost always terrible. I will play the match with you on MWS if you would like. Since I run 4 pillar we can actually see how big its effects are on the matchup. Leyline is more consistant against combo, and less consistant against everything else. Like I wrote on my last post, the focus of the sideboards should be to stay versatile. Pillar is a much more versatile card than Leyline since survival is rarely played. You don't try to count on having double hate also, you can aggressively mull slow hands into these kind of hands though. Chalice for 0 + Waste/port is extremely effective also on the play.
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  9. #9
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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Hi there, I'm looking for some advice.

    First the list I'm playing:

    4 Taiga
    3 Wooded Foothills
    4 Bloodstained Mire
    4 Mountain
    4 Wasteland
    4 Rishadan Port

    4 Goblin Lackey
    4 Mogg Fanatic
    4 Goblin Piledriver
    2 Tin-Street Hooligan
    4 Goblin Warchief
    4 Goblin Matron
    4 Gempalm Incinerator
    4 Goblin Ringleader
    1 Goblin Pyromancer
    2 Siege-Gang Commander

    4 AEther Vial

    SB:
    4 Chalice of the Void
    4 Pyrostatic Pillar
    4 Krosan Grip
    3 Pyrokinesis

    As far as I've been able to read out of this thread, this is exactly Awesomators list except for the Pyromancer and manabase. Is it really not worth playing? It is able to win games on the spot where no other card would help. I know it's very situational, but thats why it is a one-of.

    Then I really need some advice with the sideboarding.

    a) for the Mirror: You obviously want to board in the Pyrokinesis, do you also want Grips (like 2 maybe)? I wouldn't think so, but they can destroy vials. Then what comes out? Lackeys? There isn't anything else I'd even consider except maybe Piledriver.

    b) against NQG/w: You'd want the Calices, Pillars and Grips in this matchup, but have you got enough Goblins to board out?

    c) against NQG/r: What comes in what comes out? They can go aggro, so Pillar might hurt you more than them, but their cantripping engine also is hurt by Pillar. Chalice?! Grip?!

    d) against Deadguy/Red Death: I am sure you want the Grips for their Plagues. How about the Prokinesis? I guess you'd also board them in both matchups, but again what is boarded out?

    e) against combo:
    I) Combo without relevant Permanents(Solidarity): In come Pillars and Chalices.
    II) Combo with grippable Permanents like Iggy PoP or TES: Chalices and Pillars also come in, do you want the Grips?

    against any of those what goes out?

    f) against Stax: Grips come in and out goes?

    g) against Fairie Stompy: you want Grips and Pyrokinesis here I guess, again what comes out?

    Thanks in advance for any help I get
    Last edited by Van Phanel; 04-29-2007 at 08:17 PM. Reason: my english sux, especially at 1 am

  10. #10
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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Well first off on your list I think the 3rd Siege Gang is a much more integral card to the deck than the 1 of Pyromancer. Siege Gang is an awesome topdeck against a lot of decks and by running 3 you get more Lackey->Siege Gang draws. As for sideboarding

    Mirror:
    -3 Goblin Piledriver
    +3 Pyrokinesis
    I know from talking with one person that he boards out Lackeys on the draw but I think that Piledriver is a worse card the majority of the time.

    Grow:
    +4 Chalice
    -4 Mogg Fanatic
    Fanatic does practically nothing in this matchup because only terrible players will run out Werebear without Thresh. Also Chalice wants to be set @ 1 so removing a 1cc works well with this strategy. I don't think boarding in Pillar or Grip is worth it because then your Ringleaders wont be hitting as well and they are very important in that matchup.

    Combo:
    +4 Pillar +4 Chalice
    -4 Gempalm -2 Tin Street -2 Mogg Fanatic
    You don't bother bringing in Grips against form of combo because your already boarding in 8 anti-combo cards and you dont want to over sideboard. Also the Iggy Pop/TES player doesn't need to pass priority so Grips seem very marginal.

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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    ohh man long post lol

    A)Pyromancer is good and capable of winning games, however, the third siege gang helps you race combo which is your worst matchup. I would run sharpshooter before Pyromancer and I don't run either.

    B) Very good question, I guess it would depend on which build they are playing.
    What is the build you have been up against? Counterbalance Top thresh?

    C) You could board out: 2x Tin street, 1X Pyromancer, 1x SGC, 3x Incinerator, a couple mogg fanatic. Really depends on what build you're up against. Always leave at least 1 incinerator to find with tutors, but against the build with heavy burn and 4x SB Pyroclasm your board is usually very small.

    D) Deadguy and Red Death are two different board startegies. I board in pillar against Deadguy. Against Deadguy depending on the play/draw situation your strategy should be different. In: 3x Pillar, 3x Kinesis, 4x Grip. Out: 3x Gempalm incinerator, 3x Piledriver, 2x Tin Street, For you, out 1x Pyromancer,1 SGC or 1 lackey on draw. Against Red Death Just the 3x Kinesis and 4x grip. Out 2x Gempalm, 2x Tin street, 1x Pyromancer, 2x Piledriver.

    E)
    I) Against solidarity, I board out 2x tin street, 3x Goblin Ringleader, 3x Gempalm.
    II) Although it is nice to kill Storm decks artifacts, most likely you won't get that chance. I usually try to keep the speed in and use only Chalice and Pillar. I leave in Tin Street in case I get that Chance though. Out 4x Ringleader and 4x gempalm.

    F) Stax: There are way too many different stax decks. Some of them run creatures and some don't. Depending on the build, In 4x Pyrostatic Pillar and in 4x Krosan grip. Always a tough choice as to waht to take out. Out: 4x Incinerator, 2x piledriver, 2X Mogg Fanatic (more or less depending on whether or not you're playing first).

    G) Faery Stompy I board in: 4x Grip and 3x Kinesis. Out 1x Pyromancer, 1x Siege-gang, 3x Piledriver, 2x fanatic (also depending on what build you're playing against).

    I kind of rushed through this but hope it helped at least a bit.
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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Against most combo, I take out Ringleaders. I think it's by far the weakest card in the deck. Gempalms kill whatever Dark Confidants they try to use to gain advantage of you taking creature removal out and it makes a better beater than Ringleader. Tin Street is integral for destroying whatever artifacts they haste out in anticipation of your Chalice and make your mana denial strategy more complete with Wastes/Ports and Tin Streets hitting all the mana sources they've got. Otherwise I agree though, -4 Ringleaders, -3 Gempalms, -1 Fanatic seems like a decent side if you don't expect Warrens (against Warrens, you'll definitely want Fanatics as they allow you to stem the bleeding especially against 6-8 point warrens).

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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Most combo players won't risk warrens unless they have to since some players run sharpshooter. I leave in the fanatics for speed and conifdant killing usually, forgot to mention confidant good call.
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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Quote Originally Posted by Awesomator View Post
    Most combo players won't risk warrens unless they have to since some players run sharpshooter. I leave in the fanatics for speed and conifdant killing usually, forgot to mention confidant good call.
    Yea, but it doesn't hurt to have insurance, since when they have no other option, they WILL go for Warrens if they still can. And some players just ignore the danger altogether and go by the assumption that most lists don't play SS.

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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Has anybody tested Chalice of the Void in the maindeck?

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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Hellllll No. Chalice is amazing, but it hurts your deck too. You board it in when it gives you the advantage. COTV is awesome in some matchups and terrible in others. If you have a meta full of thresh and combo then definitely do it, but GPs are usually very diverse.
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  17. #17

    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Quote Originally Posted by JimmyC27 View Post
    Has anybody tested Chalice of the Void in the maindeck?
    I'd suggest testing Land Grant and Root Maze first.
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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    lol why root maze? and why land grant? Root maze is awful in this deck. Hurts you worse than it would your opponent because you don't get that quick speedy start. Also it would make your combo matchup even worse. Land grant is terrible because you show your entire strategy to your opponent. Goblins is full of tricks, you don't want to be revealing them.
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  19. #19

    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Quote Originally Posted by Awesomator View Post
    lol why root maze? and why land grant? Root maze is awful in this deck. Hurts you worse than it would your opponent because you don't get that quick speedy start. Also it would make your combo matchup even worse. Land grant is terrible because you show your entire strategy to your opponent. Goblins is full of tricks, you don't want to be revealing them.
    Clearly you've never played with/against the card,

    Land Grant tutors for Forests, including Taiga, and Root Maze can be used to turn the 8 Fetchland manabases of aggro-control and control against them while Land Grant is still a functionable Fetchland.

    First turn Taiga -> Root Maze is a Time Walk in the same sense that first turn Ancient Tomb -> Sphere of Resistance or Chalice of the Void for one is a Time Walk, because the opponent is going to lose his first turn, allowing Goblins to repeat their first turn after the Root Maze is cast with an Aether Vial or a Goblin Lackey.

    Root Maze is a 2 for 1 Time Walk against Fetchlands, because the Fetchland CIPs tapped and the land the Fetchland tutors for CIPs tapped, so if Goblins isn't using Fetchlands and the opponent is, it's a one sided tempo generator.

    Root Maze DESTROYS combo, High Tide has 8 Fetchlands and relies on its land drops each turn, and TES has 12 Artifacts and 11 lands it has to drop to generate storm and mana before and after the combo.

    Land Grant isn't required, but there's no sense in using Fetchlands with Root Maze, the Extended dual lands would also be fine.

    Root Maze is the best MD answer to combo Goblins has that isn't dead against the rest of the field, and I've used it in all of the aggro decks in this format so far to serious success.
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  20. #20
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    Re: [DTB] Vial Goblins

    Ok I can see how Root Maze is good in some aggro decks... but Goblins?

    As a comboplayer I'm quite happy to see you playing Root Maze instead of Pillar or Chalice. With Pillar or Chalice on the board I absolutely have to find an answer or change my playstyle. All I have to do to get around Root Maze is wait a turn and then I can pretend that you didn't play a hate piece at all.
    LED doesn't need to be tapped so there are only 2 cards (Chrome Mox and Lotus Petal) that are hurt by Root Maze. Iggy Pop doesn't even play Chrome Mox and TES only has to decide whether it needs the mana or the stormcount of the card.
    As for Tide, Root Maze meet your new friend Reset and his buddy Turnabout.
    Granted Root Maze does more than nothing but wouldn't you rather play more Goblins in most cases?
    edit: I wanted to add that Tide has 6 Fetchlands, and Tide has FoW :)
    edit2: With 19 lands in the deck (substituting 4 Fetch for 4 Land Grant) how often is Land Grant a free spell? I'd say not as often as a Fetchland.
    Last edited by Silverdragon; 05-01-2007 at 12:28 AM. Reason: RTFC
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