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Thread: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

  1. #1

    [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    Its been stated many times before that people beleive control to be weak in this format for a variety of reasons that have been discussed in depth. I think most people would agree that the cards available to control to control the board is actually quite good but can`t capitalize on that board position properly because of it`s extremely slow win condition. So one of the weakest points of control has been its win conditions but what can be done to shore up this problem? I feel there are two routes you can go:
    1. Try to find a creature that is good against removal, cheap and big enough to kill fast as well as be able to help out in a tight spot against aggressive decks(but if you are able to fill the first 3 requirements then the last one shouldn`t be a problem)

    or

    2. Find and put together a combo win that is easily acheivable once you have established control. The combo can`t really afford to be dead on its own and has to be relatively fast in comparison with the creature options

    Creature win conditions

    For the creature route you have a few interesting yet underplayed good win conditions in the form of Fledgling dragon, tombstalker and gigapede.

    Fledgling dragon- In the right list this guy can kill the quickest of all the other available creature finishers because of its pump ability meaning a kill as early as turn 6 or 7 but it is still very vulnerable to the sort of removal that many legacy decks play and without threshold this creature is even more vulnerable to that removal and essentially not a great blocker until at least the mid game

    Tombstalker- The biggest thing going for this guy is his ability to come down fast and help when or if things go south around turns 4-5 and end the game around turn 8-9. Unfortunately he also suffers from the same problem Fledgling dragon does in the removal department but he is a little harder to remove because he is always huge when he comes out and doesn`t necessarily cost as much.

    Gigapede- If this guy had flying I think he would probably be the contender for the best creature win condition available because he is extremely resilient to any sort of removal including your own and he has a very good power to casting cost ratio. The down side is that his mana cost means he won`t be coming down until after turn 5 which means he is the slowest of the 3. High on resiliency low on speed would be a good motto for this creature.

    Combo win conditions

    Of course the 3 obvious combo wins for control are: mana severance belcher, mizzium tranreliquat plus time vault and walk the eons plus exploration and crucible.

    I feel I don`t know enough about how these types of control decks would play to provide an intelligent opinion of how good they are so it can be discussed at length in the thread.

    There are alot more options in both the creature and combo win portions than what I have said but these are the ones that are at the forefront of my mind to get the ball rolling. If someone has any better ideas it would be good to hear them because thats what threads like these are for. To figure out what is good or what is bad about something to hopefully make it better in the future and make a more diverse format. Thoughts?
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  2. #2

    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    Blue control, splash of red for Pyroclasm and Empty the Warrens.

    Deny, deny, deny, EtW, protect, win.

    You probably want to deny for 4 or 5 turns at most before you go off with EtW, if you can work out permanent based control then you might be able to deny for longer. Use Lotus Petals, Chalice of the Void and Engineered Explosives in the main deck to help with the denial and fuel a respectable storm count when you want to go off. Mystical Tutor gets you your win condition so you need to figure out if you are going to run tutor and Brainstorm or if you are running no 1 mana spells and using Chalice to aggressively shut them down.

    Another variant would include Isochron Scepters to go with all those nice blue instants.

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    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    So your two options basically boil down to:

    1) Make your deck Aggro-Control. In other words, play Threshold.
    2) Make your deck Combo-Control. We know from Solidarity that such a deck is realtively weak in the format right now.

    Neither of these options is truly what you're looking for. In essence, the win condition of a purely control deck is largely irrelevant. You plan to win in the lategame, not the midgame.

  4. #4

    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    Currently, the most common Control win conditions are Mishra's Factory, Nantuko Monastery, Grave Shell Scarab, Eternal Witness, Eternal Dragon, Seismic Assault ... Look at how these cards synergize with the overall strategy of the deck and you get an idea of what makes a good control win condition.

    Make your deck Combo-Control. We know from Solidarity that such a deck is realtively weak in the format right now.
    I'd throw Enchantress and Aluren into this discussion.

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    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    ... and of course Decree of Justice, which is a win-option for Rift, Wombat and even some Landstill builds.
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  6. #6

    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    Combo-control in the form of Salvagers seems pretty good right now.
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    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    Quote Originally Posted by emidln View Post
    Combo-control in the form of Salvagers seems pretty good right now.
    As long as it can fight through CRET Belcher and the like. As a devoted Truffle Shuffle player, I am heavily in favour of the "win in the long game" school of thought, for which Gigapede and Grave-Shell Scarab are more than enough. However, I have also bought all the cards for CRET Belcher and TES, which shows you exactly where my allegiance to board control has gone. Unless something completely drastic happens with the metagame, control decks will be inferior to Threshold, and only Landstill will be able to both disrupt enough and establish a clock to take advantage of the disruption effectively. However, that will definately weaken the Goblins matchup....

  8. #8

    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    Quote by nightmare:
    So your two options basically boil down to:

    1) Make your deck Aggro-Control. In other words, play Threshold.
    2) Make your deck Combo-Control. We know from Solidarity that such a deck is realtively weak in the format right now.

    Neither of these options is truly what you're looking for. In essence, the win condition of a purely control deck is largely irrelevant. You plan to win in the lategame, not the midgame.

    Asking for a faster more durable win condition than a 2/2 land, a 4/4 land or an eternal dragon does not mean its trying to be threshold. It means that control decks need to become faster in order to compete. The biggest problem for me whenever I tried to play control in legacy was that it was so slow that by the time you got something to kill them with they had bounced back or could fight off your puny offense easily.Plus time is a factor with control so sometimes you would draw games when you really won just because you couldn`t kill them fast enough. Instead of saying thats just how control works why not try to fix the problem and make it better?

    As for the comment on combo control I don`t really know what to classify solidarity as but I think that with the rise of combo the control decks need to win quicker in order to compete and as I understand it there are only two ways to do that. Add in faster/better creatures to kill faster or give it a combo finish.
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    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    Quote Originally Posted by blacklotus3636 View Post
    Asking for a faster more durable win condition than a 2/2 land, a 4/4 land or an eternal dragon does not mean its trying to be threshold. It means that control decks need to become faster in order to compete.
    Which means they need to play the aggro-control game to compete. If they are working toward that, then the Threshold shell is the logical conclusion.

    The biggest problem for me whenever I tried to play control in legacy was that it was so slow that by the time you got something to kill them with they had bounced back or could fight off your puny offense easily. Plus time is a factor with control so sometimes you would draw games when you really won just because you couldn`t kill them fast enough. Instead of saying thats just how control works why not try to fix the problem and make it better?
    http://mtgthesource.com/forums/showt...?t=5449&page=6

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    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    I think the most important quality of a win condition is that it fits into your deck seamlessly.

    Example:
    I'm having fairly decent results with a deck that relies on an assortment of disgusting artifacts/enchantments and Enlightened Tutor. I tried everything true and tested, and dismissed all good win conditions until I got stuck with Rakavolver. Remaining relevant through both Moat and Humility was of more importance than being a generally crappy card.


    There are literally dozens of questions that need to be answered, here a few off the top of my head:

    Do you need it often to stem an early assault?
    Can you protect it reliably when it resolves?
    Do you intend to ever wipe the board yourself?
    Do you have access to graveyard? If so, how?
    How many slots are you willing to spare?
    Do you care whether you can cast it as an instant?
    Do you often have a lot of mana open?

    And those are only the non-specific ones; add 'does deck xyz present a problem?' in a dozen iterations.



    The line between Aggro/Control and Control is quite distinct in my opinion. UGw Thresh is usually a textbook example of Aggro/Control, but sometimes approaches the game in a true control attitude: 'I need to find Counterbalance/Top or Mongoose/Worship and protect it, then I can kill at my leisure'.
    In the latter case, Thresh would probably be more than happy to board out its cheap threats for more permission and more control tools. Speed matters only if you don't trust your deck to keep the opponent down indefinitely (or at least long enough to win with slow and sure win conditions).

  11. #11

    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    Quote Originally Posted by Nightmare View Post
    Which means they need to play the aggro-control game to compete. If they are working toward that, then the Threshold shell is the logical conclusion.

    http://mtgthesource.com/forums/showt...?t=5449&page=6
    I don't think that's the case tho', both Auriok Salvagers and Cephalid Illusionist open up the doors to aggro-control-combo, and being able to transition between all three of those roles puts an opponent under tremendous pressure.
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    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    I think what blacklotus is suggesting is not to move closer to Aggro-Control, but rather to move closer to Midrange (or Combo-Control). In other words, the plan should be "Stop the opponent's game plan, then drop something that makes him crap his pants." Examples of this would be MUC with Morphling, Scepter-Chant, classic 'Tog, or MBC with Kokusho.
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    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    Nihil is right.

    Though with traditional control it's usually going to take a while to win. If there was any way to drop a bomb that quick, wouldn't all players playing control play it?

    I mean, with any great finisher, usually the more mana you have the stronger it becomes, look at Morphling and Decree of Justice.

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    Re: [Discussion] Control`s win condition

    in black/blue, i've been trying vexing sphinx and tombstalker. both are relatively fast, and they work well together. control for 2-3 turns, then sphinx, then tombstalker. the BB UU in each is a little taxing, but gemstone mines and duals help. these two give nine damage a turn and only having to control the opponent's game for 6-8 turns is a lot better than having to keep them at a standstill for 10-14 or something like that. that's a little specific, but whatever. is shows that coltrol can have fast, powerful win conditions
    Last edited by raharu; 06-30-2007 at 11:15 PM.

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