Page 1 of 14 1234511 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 268

Thread: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

  1. #1
    Well, Attempted Rationalism at least.
    Rationalist's Avatar
    Join Date

    May 2015
    Location

    King County
    Posts

    180

    'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    [EDIT: Now Available on MTGO]


    The Deck (as seen in Rounds 1 and 7 below):


    The Exact List Mark Played in the Video Above:

    4x Boarding Party
    4x Creative Technique
    4x Maelstrom Wanderer
    3x Aurora Phoenix
    2x Sweet-Gum Recluse
    2x Let the Galaxy Burn
    1x Emrakul, the Aeons Torn

    4x Gemstone Cavern
    4x Sandstone Needle
    4x Saprazzan Skerry
    4x Hickory Woodlot
    4x Ancient Tomb
    4x City of Traitors
    4x Dwarven Ruin
    4x Otawara, Soaring City
    3x Crystal Vein
    3x Sulfur Vent
    1x Havenwood Battleground
    1x Mountain

    Sideboard:

    4x Throes of Chaos
    4x Pyrokinesis
    3x Mirrorshell Crab
    2x Tibalt's Trickery
    1x Maddening Hex
    1x Aeve, Progenitor Ooze

    Whatever I am personally playing at this moment in time: Mississippi River Moxfield Link

    Deck Description:

    The basic premise of this deck is that the chain of Cascader -> Creative Technique -> Cascader -> Creative Technique is very difficult to interrupt and has an overwhelming chance of wining you the game on the spot on most boardstates. Starting the combo, even redundantly if needed, is also extremely consistent, as the deck is basically all gas and lands. In the current "fiat stock" list there are currently 4 cards that with the game on 5 mana and demand double-countermagic to stop, 11 cards that win the game with 6 mana and demand double-countermagic to stop, and 4 cards that win the game on 8 mana and cannot be stopped by double-countermagic. When the combo chain ends, you should usually have somewhere between 50 and 100 power on board, they should all have haste, and quite often you should also have a hasty Emrakul as well as an extra turn trigger. We're going "over" classic Show and Tell here, and we're doing so with a deck with more consistent access to its combo and a combo that is more resilient to countermagic.

    Individual Card Discussions:

    Boarding Party - This is the best individual cascading 6-Drop. It's a 6/3 Haste and even through an opposing Deafening Silence that you failed to remove just casting spells that summon 3 beaters (Cascade -> CT -> 2 more Cascaders) can win quite a few games just by being big and hasty. Most importantly, it's easy to cast with a mana cost of 5R.

    Creative Technique - This spell is the deck. Quite often it becomes correct not to "demonstrate" with CT when you're confident you are effectively certain to win the game with the amount of combo-chaining you've already built up and there is a card or two that could ruin your chain somewhere in your opponent's deck. If you're anything like me this will come up far less often then you'll initially expect, however, and you should almost always default to demonstrating. You almost always demonstrate.

    Maelstrom Wanderer - Maelstrom Wanderer is a lynch-pin of the deck. Not only does his haste let you win without passing the turn to the opponent even if you miss Emrakul in the entire chain, his double-cascading is what helps propagate the combo chaining (into a forking river, if you will). It's also worth noting that the way timing works hitting (or even hardcasting) MW provides insulation for you against Flusterstorm and Mindbreak Trap as he seeds a Cascade Trigger into the stack that survives both forms of interaction. Hardcasting MW vs. Delver is a solid way to power through a sculpted hand of countermagic.

    Aurora Phoenix - The deck leans heavily red and the manabase largely informs our choice of cascading 6-Drops. This is the "other" Mono-Red one that's still a creature threat. Other than flying and cascade the text on him is almost always irrelevant. The double-red pips make him harder to cast than even Let the Galaxy Burn as there are only 8 lands in the deck that make double-red pips on their own, but the deck needs a critical mass of beefy creatures and he checks all the boxes even if he doesn't excel at any particular one. Flying can be relevant.

    Sweet-Gum Recluse - This is probably the least popular 6-Drop Cascader currently in the "Fiat Stock" list, but there are two strong cases for his presence in the deck in some small number. Firstly the most inflexible thing about this deck is its manabase. They've just only printed so many Sol-Lands in the game's history and we're clearly already turning the dial to maximum here. One consequence of this is that we end up with a lot of non-red lands in our primarily red deck, and an astute opponent is likely to prioritize wastelanding specifically the red ones. It benefits us, then, to run a couple cascaders that don't rely on red-mana and instead utilize another color since we'll be forced to run some number of non-red depletion-lands. You don't want to run a lot of such creatures since we're so predominantly a red-deck, but matching our cascaders to our manabase means a healthy creature selection will have 1 or 2 non-red ones. Furthermore Sweet-Gum's "triple-lord" effect can actually be a huge amount of beef, which can matter both when our combo is stifled before it reaches critical mass (such as through Deafening Silence) and we have to go beatdown, or against decks like Reanimator when we want our board to swing happily through Emrakul et. al. He also has flash which could be relevant someday, but I've never personally had cause to make use of the flash.

    Let the Galaxy Burn - This might not be an actual threat, but it's more maindeck answers to hatebears and it's just as easy to cast as Boarding Party. It's quite useful in the right matchups.

    Emrakul, the Aeons Torn - She wins the game even in awkward boardstates where pure force doesn't and even gives us strong protection against Painter. The extra turn is particularly helpful is the opponent is threatening a combo win on their next turn, also has an answer for MW to remove haste from our non-BP threats, and also has a blocker or two. You know her already; she's good.

    Gemstone Cavern - Free mana is good and throwing away one card from hand is cheaper for this deck than pretty much any other. Can both enable Turn-2 hardcast CT as well as let us power through Daze or Thalia as needed. Credit to Jarvis Yu for the suggestion.

    Sandstone Needle, Saprazzan Skerry, Hickory Woodlot - These lands are great. If you're new to this deck I know that might sound a bit crazy, but they really are; other decks are just overly dependent on casting a large number of spells from their hand for mana to win the game, but in a world where the game ends with a low from-hand-cast count but not on Turn 1, these are reusable colored Sol-Lands. Against decks like Delver the plan is often to Combo two turns in a row to burn out their countermagic. Lands that stick around make that ask much, much easier.

    Ancient Tomb, City of Traitors, Crystal Vein - Most optimal lines involve playing an untapped Sol-Land on your critical combo turn, so we play lots of them.

    Dwarven Ruins - We are very thirst for Sol-Lands, and we have a desire for Double-Red pips. Thus, Dwarven Ruins. I know it's a sacland, but we play 40 lands so it's not as bad as you think. If it helps, think of it as our Rite of Flame.

    Otawara, Soaring City - It's maindeck interaction. In a combo deck that is doing everything it can to make it self immunized from opposing from-the-hand interaction, having maindeck answer to hatepieces is a beautiful thing.

    Sulfur Vent - We remain thirsty for Sol-Lands, and this is another one that can make Red-Mana. Sulfur Vent tends to get the nod ahead of Timber Farm because the blue-mana can be relevant for Otawara, but in a variant that's running Boseiju, Who Endures you could swap in one for the other. Makes MW much easier to hardcast as the land provides 2/3rds of its color requirements on its own.

    Havenwood Battleground - This is in the current "fiat stock" list as another land to turn on both Sweet-Gum Recluse as well as hardcast MW. Could reasonably be a 4th Crystal Vein instead.

    Mountain - There are a lot of effects that destroy a land but get you a basic from the maindeck. Given that one basic is still enough to turn two colorless sol-lands into CT mana, running a single basic can become relevant. Given that opposing Boseiju, Who Endures allow you to search for any land with basic land types, if that's the only form of this effect you expect to see, could reasonably be replaced with a Volcanic Island to help turn on Otawara.

    Throes of Chaos - Out of the sideboard this can let you turn the deck into a reasonably consistent Turn 2 deck in a way that is also resistance to Thoughtseize-effects to try to get under fast combo decks, or act as additional copies of Maddening Hex vs. most spell-based combos. Credit to 'rufus' for the suggestion.

    Pyrokinesis - Kills hatebears. We want this over Fury because 6-CMC prevents it from clogging up our cascades. It can still end a branch of the chain by being hit off CT or a MW Cascade, but based on the way the internal engine of the deck works that would only happen after forking an additional branch into the chain so it's less of a problem. Credit to Joe, from Mox Boarding House Ballard.

    Maddening Hex - We can play it turn 2 pretty consistent (particularly with Throes of Chaos) and there are many decks that just can't beat this card.

    Tibalt's Trickery - This is what allows us to turn Throes of Chaos into a combo starter we can play on turn 2. You don't want to run more than 2 copies, however, as having multiple of these in the deck while combo chaining can get ... complicated. Credit to 'rufus', from this very thread.

    Mirrorshell Crab - A surprisingly effective Counterspell/Stifle for 3 Mana (since it can't be countered back) that doesn't get Cascaded into by the 6-Drops, and is a beefy 5/7 with Ward when it ends up in your combo chain anyways.

    Aeve, Progenitor Ooze - Specifically, blue tempo decks have the ability to counter a single copy of CT while we're comboing and then try to Surgical Extraction them from the deck to cut our chain short. Doing that adds an additional 2 storm to the stormcount, however, on top of what we've already generated ourselves. This allows Aeve becoming the last remaining cascade hit in the deck and come down along side any other cascader already on the stack to generate a threatening board. Credit to Bob Huang.

    Other Cards Worth Discussing:

    So the above is my best approximation of what I currently consider the optimal build. If you're not planning on running that exact list card-for-card, however, let's also talk about some of the other relevant cards not listed above.

    Boseiju, Who Endures - There is another channel land that you may see in lists that I don't have listed above. It was in the original build of the deck but I personally cut it after realizing that after months of playing with the deck it was only ever useful once. If it was reliably able to answer a Bloodmoon or there were more Trinisphere decks in the meta I might reconsider, as it is an efficient answer and a flexible card, but I find I'd rather have the Gemstone Caverns.

    Apex Devastator - Some lists have run a single copy of Apex Devastator and I've played around with this as well. It strikes me as overkill, though, as after hitting Maelstrom Wanderer the combo always seems to build sufficient critical mass, it's not as useful a creature on the board, you can't reasonably hardcast it, and it's not Red for Pyrokinesis. If you find yourself with a build and in a meta where building up critical mass is your sticking point it's worth remembering that this card exists, but in general I don't recommend it.

    Magma Opus - A potential sideboard "ritual" that produces Treasure and doesn't get cascaded into.

    Emergent Ultimatum - This is an interesting card to throw into the combo chain, but even Apex Devastator is better at building critical mass and isn't as vulnerable to countermagic. This card was floated by my friend Lee Hung Nguyen (who you might know as 1mrlee on twitch) but I don't think it's generically useful. It does, however, provide a way to plugging a different set of sideboard cards into the deck's internal engine as well as raising the deck's internal blue and green count, so if you're doing something more radical this card is a tool that plugs into the deck in an interesting way. As it stands, though, I think it's a slightly awkward adaptor that doesn't have a worthwhile payoff to plug onto the other end.

    Keruga, The Macrosage - This guy is quite lovable and I wish I had a current excuse to run him. I don't. However, if you're trying to make Commandeer or Force of Vigor work, consider if you want to adopt this hippo as your companion.

    Sakashima's Protégé - This is an alternative 6-Drop Cascader that can fall into the Sweet-Gum Recluse slot. Basically, it's a clone that defaults to a 3/1 without good targets. I've found Sweet-Gum to be more useful and reliable, but this is an option if the clone effect is super valuable to you. Worth noting that you can clone your own Emrakul to send your Emrakul to the graveyard while keeping a copy in place, which lets you shuffle your graveyard back into your library mid-chain.

    Etherium-Horn Sorcerer - I used to run this guy so inertia and older stuff might cause you to see him here and there but he's awkward to cast and an unimpressive body with an irrelevant ability. I would strongly recommend avoiding this.

    Tinder Farm - An alternative to Sulfur Vent if you care more about Green Mana that the 'Fiat Stock List' (or care about White Mana for some reason I can't currently predict).

    Consign/Oblivion - This is a bounce spell for 1U that you can play without being cascaded into. Another very reasonable sideboard card that's just not currently being run.

    Chancellor of the Annex - Obviously strong in multiple matchups if you have room for it in the sideboard.

    Fry - I used to run this as an answer to Teferi, Time Raveler who is a major headache for the deck without an Otawara in hand. It really wedges itself into the gears of the combo though so I don't generally recommend it. Worth remembering its existing if Teferi becomes incredibly common, though.

    Commandeer - If you're able to make the deck blue enough this is a massively powerful sideboard card alongside Keruga. I was never successful in making the deck blue enough so my recommendation remains a base red-deck with Pyrokinesis. If you want to try to construct a Blue Keruga version with Sakashima's Protégé and Etherium-Horn Sorcerer though I won't stop you.

    Force of Vigor - A strong sideboard card in theory if you want to pair it with Keruga. Would be easier to pull off than Commandeer.

    Boom Pile - We're a primarily red deck full of Sol-Lands and sometimes (vs. Red Prison, for example) you want want a catch-all answer to permanents. Sometimes it doesn't work and that's unfortunate, but if you don't need it to buy you a turn by clearing their threats and are just using it to remove hatepieces, technically it has a 75% chance since you'll get two-flips before your next pre-combat mainphase. Card is definitely questionable but if you're really looking for something to work regularly against something like classic Mono-Red Prison, a card worth remembering.

    Show and Tell / Omniscience - Don't play these cards! In general I think I'm keeping an appropriately humble tone here for what for all its strengths is a homebrew I'm pretty much just testing at local 1ks and weeklies, but when other people play around with the deck I repeatedly see these cards being floated. They don't do anything you want to do. The deck is an engine designed to play itself out, not try to get extra value out of your hand. Anything that has a chance of "bricking" the combo chain needs to have a very specific purpose in mind. This is just trying to juggle while comboing for no reason. Whatever card you think this could enable could just have been the card you hit instead of either of these. Don't play these cards!

    Sideboard Guide:



    - All suggestions in this sideboard guide are intended to emphasize the thoughts behind the sideboard construction, not to be definitive play suggestions. -
    - I'm a metaphorical car-engineer, not a metaphorical Nascar pilot. Adapt as you see fit, Speed. -

    [EDIT: Currently Playing with this sideboard and abandoning my original sideboard guide attempt. Short version though, you want 4x Pyrokinesis vs. Initiative, 4x Throes + 2x Trickery vs Fast Combo, you want to add 1x Maddening Hex if that Fast Combo is storm-based, you want to bring in Aeve vs Blue Tempo, and that leaves 3-ish sideboard slots that I'm honestly still unsure about myself]
    Last edited by Rationalist; 08-04-2023 at 08:28 PM.

  2. #2
    Member

    Join Date

    Sep 2011
    Posts

    4,928

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Interesting deck. The consistent goldfish is awesome.

    Lowest hanging fruit: You get to run Keruga, the Macrosage in the SB for free. That guarantees you a threat and extra card in hand, even if you can't pull off the combo. Companion gives you something to do with your mana before you hit 5. It also gives you +1 blue card (see Commandeer).
    Edit: Did not notice Keruga was already buried in the list.

    The next step is to find ways to interact with interaction without disrupting the engine. It's a shame you can't run Defense Grid, as that both protects you from counters and stops opponent from casting their copies if you choose that option. You're limited to lands or CMC 6+.

    Echo of Eons costs 6! It plays very well with aggressive mulligans and big mana. If you hit in the combo, it won't cascade into more spells, but it does reload your hand. When you fail to combo, it could help reload on resources.

    All is Dust may be appealing in the SB. It's a catch-all answer to most permanent-based hate and creature swarms as long as you can ramp to 7. Blast Zone is another options for low CMC stuff.

    Colossal Skyturtle could be good tech too. It bounces an early Murktide Regent/Marit Lage or returns a disrupted piece to your hand.

    Split cards let you cheat and play below 6 CMC, because technically their CMC is the combined cost of both spells.
    Reason // Believe costs "6" but is turn 1 library manipulation into a way to cheat Emrakul into play!!
    Discovery // Dispersal costs "7" for a 2-mana cantrip
    Expansion // Explosion costs "6" for a Fork that could be used to counter counterspells or double up on your own Creative Technique. Don't know if that's any good.
    Supply // Demand unfortunately costs "5", otherwise you could run a 3-mana tutor
    Crime // Punishment is a "7" cmc XBG board wipe for permanent-based hate. Bad off cascade, good in opening hand.

  3. #3

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Is there enough Red in the deck for Pyrokinesis instead of Fry? And would Bojuka Bog be serviceable instead of Leyline of the Void? With those changes your SB plan never whammys you when you cascade aside from the song.

    Edit: D'oh, not never, just much less. Maelstrom Wanderer still hits Pyro.

  4. #4
    Well, Attempted Rationalism at least.
    Rationalist's Avatar
    Join Date

    May 2015
    Location

    King County
    Posts

    180

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Went 4-0 tonight at the Mox Boarding House Ballard (Card Kingdom) Legacy Weekly, beating Merfolk, Lands, WG Depths, and 4C Minsc Pile.

    I'll post the details I remember as a rundown with lessons learned in the next 24 hours or so (I promised my architect I'd send her an email tonight with house measurements and stuff and it's almost 10:30 already).

    Was exciting. Drew a crowd and one or two people took pictures.

    I appreciate the input and ideas. Please keep them coming. =)

  5. #5
    Member

    Join Date

    Sep 2011
    Posts

    4,928

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Great result! Well done.

    I watched the YouTube video and am confused. Creative Technique's Demonstrate ability is optional. You don't have to use it. Then you only get 1 Creative Technique (instead of 2 branches), but you also don't give opponent a free spell. Against a goldfish, always branching makes sense. Against Show and Tell, I don't understand why the pilot (you?) made the copy. Opponent got free Griselbrand and Emrakul, prolonging the game, when it could have been a much faster win without the copy. With only 1 branch you still get 4 creatures in play, including a good shot at free Emrakul. The more times you use Demonstrate, the higher chance opponent hits a dangerous card (Griselbrand, Emrakul, Force of Will, cantrip -> Force of Will, Show and Tell -> big thing from hand, Cunning Wish -> Mindbreak Trap/Flusterstorm from SB?).

  6. #6
    Well, Attempted Rationalism at least.
    Rationalist's Avatar
    Join Date

    May 2015
    Location

    King County
    Posts

    180

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Quote Originally Posted by FTW View Post
    Great result! Well done.

    I watched the YouTube video and am confused. Creative Technique's Demonstrate ability is optional. You don't have to use it. Then you only get 1 Creative Technique (instead of 2 branches), but you also don't give opponent a free spell. Against a goldfish, always branching makes sense. Against Show and Tell, I don't understand why the pilot (you?) made the copy. Opponent got free Griselbrand and Emrakul, prolonging the game, when it could have been a much faster win without the copy. With only 1 branch you still get 4 creatures in play, including a good shot at free Emrakul. The more times you use Demonstrate, the higher chance opponent hits a dangerous card (Griselbrand, Emrakul, Force of Will, cantrip -> Force of Will, Show and Tell -> big thing from hand, Cunning Wish -> Mindbreak Trap/Flusterstorm from SB?).
    Point of clarification:

    I'm not the one in the video. I'm just "citing my sources" since watching that video gave me the inspiration for the more "all in" version of the deck. (I didn't want to pretend I was the first person in the world to throw cascade cards into a deck with creativity - I just made this "forced echo chamber" all in combo version that's half Sol Lands). I'd have to rewatch it to try to guess their exact motives, but like you I don't know their exact thoughts.

    Having played the deck I will say that there are times when you don't want to demonstrate (if you're confident you can win with what you have deterministically and the opponent has relevant disruption) so I suspect your analysis may well be correct, and they may have just made a poor play decision. One of the interesting things about the deck is that you can just "low-ball it" outright and simply grab 4 or 5 random creatures. I don't know their full list though. This entire thing started when I tried to recreate their list to submit to Bryant Cook and then suddenly realized I could make it much better by going in a different "all in" direction. I'm still naive in piloting this deck, but in my version at least I'd still demonstrate against Show and Tell by default. If you don't demonstrate you expose your stream to their countermagic since they would only need 1 FoW to shut you down, and as long as they don't hit an immediate Griselbrand to dig for answers on their first Creativity it doesn't seem much different than demonstrating against a blue deck which you should just go far over the top of.

    Here's the kind of board state you can generate if your opponent can't shut down your stream early. (The die represents 2 extra turns on the stack.)



    The fact that extra Emrakuls (or Sakashima's Apprentices copying Emrakul) can shuffle Creative Techniques back into your library is quite fun.

    In general though, yeah, sometimes it's not right to go for it, but given that the combo becomes more vulnerable when you don't push at least at the start, at least in my version (without the Show and Tell "junk" hits and so forth), I'd certainly push the demonstrate at least on the first one if not further.

  7. #7

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Went through gatherer for more options for the SB that would work for this deck. Found a few more Split cards that could have merit.

    Catch // Release
    Consign // Oblivion
    Never // Return

    All offer an answer to 3Feri at least which seems to be the toughest of the 3 big hate pieces you listed to deal with. The first 2 are also blue for Commandeer with Catch // Release also pitching to Pyrokinesis. The mana would need to change to incorporate Never // Return, but I left it included for completeness.

    Bound // Determined

    Need an extra 2 mana on the go off turn, but Determined serves as protection on the combo turn and hitting Bound off of Creative Technique isn't too bad.

    Rough // Tumble

    Might be better than Pyrokinesis for dealing with Thalia/Small creatures.

  8. #8
    Member

    Join Date

    Sep 2011
    Posts

    4,928

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Quote Originally Posted by Rationalist View Post
    Here's the kind of board state you can generate if your opponent can't shut down your stream early. (The die represents 2 extra turns on the stack.)
    While this is certainly fun for meme value, half that board state would accomplish the same thing in 99% of games. You could generate an even crazier board state, but is that necessary? The "low ball" board state of 4-5 creatures should be enough to win most games (Edit: against most decks. Not only talking about Show and Tell here).

    Imho you should weigh the necessity of extra branches (to get enough gas to win) against the risk of opponent hitting powerful cards to stop you. That varies by deck. Show and Tell is a worst case scenario: big fatties, blue counters, cantrips into counters, Cunning Wish into Flusterstorm/Mindbreak Trap (to end all branches at once!). There are at least 20 bad reveals possible, some enabling them to shut down multiple branches. Their plan is also to cast big spells for free, they don't need help. Against fair blue control, it makes more sense to Demonstrate the first 1-2 times to dodge Force (but too many times and you can dig them into a board wipe or T3feri).
    Last edited by FTW; 09-14-2022 at 04:54 PM.

  9. #9
    Well, Attempted Rationalism at least.
    Rationalist's Avatar
    Join Date

    May 2015
    Location

    King County
    Posts

    180

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Quote Originally Posted by FTW View Post
    The "low ball" board state of 4-5 creatures should be enough to win most games.
    Against Show and Tell with no Disruption of my own?

    Quote Originally Posted by FTW View Post
    Imho you should weigh the necessity of extra branches (to get enough gas to win) against the risk of opponent hitting powerful cards to stop you.
    I agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by FTW View Post
    Show and Tell is a worst case scenario: big fatties, blue counters, cantrips into counters, Cunning Wish into Flusterstorm/Mindbreak Trap (to end all branches at once!). There are at least 20 bad reveals possible, some enabling them to shut down multiple branches. Their plan is also to cast big spells for free, they don't need help. Against fair blue control, it makes more sense to Demonstrate the first 1-2 times to dodge Force (but too many times and you can dig them into a board wipe or T3feri).
    I'm not ... positive I agree yet (unless Mindbreak Trap is stock now and I missed it, in which case maybe I do).

    I mean it's a reasonable argument, but I'm not sure it's worth capping the ceiling of the combo at four to 5 random creatures against Show and Tell as I'm not positive that clock is enough pressure to be relevant against their average hand. Rather than trying to "philosophize" this one though, let me actually investigate some hypergeometric possibility trees with a stock-ish list and really hammer out what the numbers look like here. Regardless of the outcome, it will probably be educational for me to look at some actual probabilities here, so thanks for raising this either way.

  10. #10
    Well, Attempted Rationalism at least.
    Rationalist's Avatar
    Join Date

    May 2015
    Location

    King County
    Posts

    180

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Quote Originally Posted by LennonMarx View Post
    Went through gatherer for more options for the SB that would work for this deck. Found a few more Split cards that could have merit.

    Catch // Release
    Consign // Oblivion
    Never // Return

    All offer an answer to 3Feri at least which seems to be the toughest of the 3 big hate pieces you listed to deal with. The first 2 are also blue for Commandeer with Catch // Release also pitching to Pyrokinesis. The mana would need to change to incorporate Never // Return, but I left it included for completeness.

    Bound // Determined

    Need an extra 2 mana on the go off turn, but Determined serves as protection on the combo turn and hitting Bound off of Creative Technique isn't too bad.

    Rough // Tumble

    Might be better than Pyrokinesis for dealing with Thalia/Small creatures.
    Consign // Oblivion is a nice find. EDIT: I don't think it's a fantastic answer to Teferi though since I can't cast it as an instant and it doesn't destroy it so it requires 7/8 mana to go off with more specific color requirements, but it's a flexible answer for some other things.

  11. #11
    Well, Attempted Rationalism at least.
    Rationalist's Avatar
    Join Date

    May 2015
    Location

    King County
    Posts

    180

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Re: FTW's thoughts re: Demonstrating the Combo vs. Omnishow

    This is probably a healthy thing to do spend some time thinking about so I did. Feel free to correct me if and where you think I'm losing the plot here.

    For some reason, initially, I thought I could do the same kind of hypergeometric "tree" I usually do manabase calculations (example:https://i.imgur.com/s3aGtW7.png) to resolve this issue, but I now think this isn't necessary so I'm going to do a quick facsimile of this sort of thing. To try to investigate this, I grabbed the most recent JPA Omnishow list from MTGGoldfish (https://www.mtggoldfish.com/deck/5094284#paper) to serve as my prototypical 'stock/expected list' and tried to break up the spells they could technique into maindeck into "Wiffs", "Marginal", "Conditional", "FoW-Level Answers", "Problematic", and "Bangers" under the hypothetical scenario in which you're going off T3 against 3 untapped mana.

    Taking a good number of liberties to keep this manageable, this is what I got

    Wiffs 6/41 ~ 14.6%

    2x Jace
    4x Lotus Petal

    Marginal 15/41 ~ 36.6%

    4x Veil of Summer
    4x Brainstorm
    4x Ponder
    3x Emrakul

    Conditional 10/41 ~ 24.4%

    4x Show and Tell
    3x Eureka
    3x Omniscience

    FoW-Level Answers ~17.0%

    4x FoW
    3x Intuition

    Problematic 3/41 ~ 7.3%

    3x Griselbrand

    Bangers

    Nothing

    Quick justification because there's more to talk about.

    • Jace isn't going to do anything until and unless I pass the turn and there are no lines where the 4th mana turns on a relevant line from hand
    • All of the non-creature spells in 'Marginal' have a small chance of drawing a Force of Will and Emrakul is relevant because it sets a floor in how much value we need to get off the combo. These have real utility for the opponent, but are closer to a Wiff than a Force of Will.
    • All of the cards in "Conditional" are more useful than digging 3 cards deeper for an answer, but given the composition of the deck have a hypothetical "expectation number of answers" level less than just getting 1 Force of Will. This is probably the most attackable assumption of this analysis, as with Intuition or Griselbrand in hand this turns into Drawing 14 cards. However, since the only maindeck answer they have is Force of Will, I think when you combine the chance that there hand meets that condition with the variance of drawing 14 cards, that this should easily be worth less than 1 Force of Will in expectation value.
    • The best thing that intuition can grab here with a natural expectation of getting a Show and Tell effect later in the turn with this deck is just FoW, so it's a FoW. Technically Intuition would be the worse of the two here due to the pitch-card required to cast FoW from hand, but that's a nuance we're paving over.


    So according to this rough breakdown there's about a 75% chance that what they get is worse than a FoW, about 17% chance that what they get will directly or effectively be a FoW, and about a 7% chance that what they get will be Griselbrand, which is the one card they could hit that could be worse for us than them getting a FoW.

    The point here is that by not demonstrating, comparatively, we're giving them exactly one free FoW, which is clearly at the upper end of the probability distribution of what they could get. That's not the end of the issue, though, because the relevant question would then become how bad for us would we expect the Griselbrand hit to be? So let's assume that they highroll that 7% off the Creative Technique and hit a Griselbrand, have 50 cards left in their library, and all 4 FoW and 3 Intuition (which we are counting as FoWs) are in there. I went and plugged these numbers into a hypergeometic calculator, assumed they drew 14 of those cards, and this is what I got:

    Probability n = 0 : ~8%
    Probability n = 1 : ~27%
    Probability n > 1 : ~64%

    There's more detail we could break these numbers into because we're being pretty rough, but here's the picture as we've established it at the resolution of this analysis.

    When we demonstrate to this opponent, about ([7.3 X 0.64]%) ~ 4.67% of the time we're going to shoot ourselves in the foot, give them a Griselbrand, and see them draw into multiple answers. The other ~95% of probability space consists of them doing no better in halting our gameplan than if we had simply not demonstrated, and most of THAT portion of probability space (3/4s of all possibilities) consist of them getting a "Conditional", "Marginal", or "Wiff" off the technique, all of which are outcomes in which we would expect it is more likely than not that our combo will be safer than if we had not demonstrated.

    The decision that is presented to us is then this:

    1. We can choose not to demonstrate our first technique, in which case if our opponent has any of the 7 "FoW" level cards in hand they will stop our combo immediately. If not, then we will summon 4 or 5 creatures (depending on what spell initiated our cascade stream), which variably may or may not have haste, and try to use them to clock an opponent about to start their Turn 4 on Omnishow against no opposing disruption from our side of the table.

    OR

    2. We can demonstrate, raise the ceiling of our combo so that if our opponent doesn't stop it we will likely win without passing the turn at the cost of taking ~5% risk that we'll give the opponent the ability to stop us after the first Creative Technique even if they didn't have it already, but actively preventing our opponent from stopping our combo if they don't high-roll that very first creative technique.

    I feel much better about option 2. Keep in mind that after the first demonstration, the next time we demonstrate we'll have 3 copies of creative technique on the stack and it will be even harder than to stop the combo than it was before (making each subsequent demonstration safer than the previous one).

    This is pretty rough and I'm admittedly I'm only putting 30 or 40 minutes into this post and its math, but as a Fermi calculation to make this yes or no decision, I think it makes sense.

    Am I getting something wrong here? Happy to correct and refine this outlook in the name of piloting this deck better as I'm rather enamored by it at the present time.

  12. #12
    Well, Attempted Rationalism at least.
    Rationalist's Avatar
    Join Date

    May 2015
    Location

    King County
    Posts

    180

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    ... (continued)

    FTW did allude to a Cunning Wish build though, which does seem more dangerous than the JPA list I pulled in this regard. I did find one more recent placing with a Cunning Wish build so I'll rerun this kind of Fermi-style calc here with that build later today.

    [Will edit in here when appropriate]

  13. #13
    Member

    Join Date

    Sep 2011
    Posts

    4,928

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Thanks for doing that detailed analysis.

    The deck in the video had better hits than JPA's. Against JPA's recent UG EurekaTell list I agree. But Jace is rare. Looking at recent results there's a wide range of Show and Tell lists. There isn't really a stock build like there is for Delver.

    If you see Cunning Wish like the video then there is a Wishboard. A Wishboard could have 1 copy of Flusterstorm or Mindbreak Trap. Either could end all your branches.

    DANGER Cards:
    Griselbrand -> draw 14 into many answers or cantrips into answers + lifelink blocker
    Cunning Wish -> possible Mindbreak/Fluster to end all branches
    Flusterstorm -> can counter multiple Creative Techniques (not in JPA's list or video, but maindeck in some lists)
    Force of Will -> counters 1 Creative technique
    Intuition -> Puts Force or other answer in hand (not in the video deck)
    Emrakul -> extra turn could happen before yours and annihilate your creatures before they attack

    Conditionally dangerous:
    Brainstorm -> Can put FoW, Wish or Fluster in hand
    Ponder -> Can put FoW, Wish or Fluster in hand
    Omniscience -> Lets them dig for answers or maybe even combo off before your branches resolve (Cunning Wish -> Firemind's Foresight -> ... -> set up Release the Ants)
    Show and Tell -> bad if Griselbrand or Omni in hand
    Sneak Attack -> bad if Griselbrand is in hand (not in the video deck or JPA's list)
    Eureka -> bad if Griselbrand or Omni in hand

    It definitely depends on the build. Given the variations between builds and the potentially dangerous cards in many, Show and Tell seems like the worst case scenario for Demonstrate. Most other decks don't have as many dangerous hits.

    Against a generic fair blue deck, I agree with you that Demonstrate is worth it. They have some probability of hitting a counter while you get a guaranteed 2nd copy, so overall it improves your odds to beat counters (especially FoW in hand on the 1st copy).

    Until there's sufficient playtesting of real matchups, this will be all theory. Maybe when you test more you'll find something different.
    Last edited by FTW; 09-14-2022 at 04:47 PM.

  14. #14
    Well, Attempted Rationalism at least.
    Rationalist's Avatar
    Join Date

    May 2015
    Location

    King County
    Posts

    180

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Quote Originally Posted by FTW View Post
    Until there's sufficient playtesting of real matchups, this will be all theory. Maybe when you test more you'll find something different.
    One of the reasons I'm hoping popularize the deck a little, for sure.

    Also, what do you think, reasonable new sideboard card to test? (Being non-colorless is a small concern but I like some of what it opens up.)


  15. #15
    Member

    Join Date

    Sep 2011
    Posts

    4,928

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    It looks like decent tech. But when do you bring it in? If you're casting big cascade spells, you should already beat a board of X/2s? Edit: Maybe D&T and Elves?

    Is there anything good that would shuffle Creative Techniques back into your library so you can go through more than 4? Echo of Eons? Time Spiral? Time Spiral lets you untap to cast another cascader/Creative Technique to keep going off. Seems good.

    Is 1 Boseiju, Who Shelters All worth it to help force through the first copy?

  16. #16

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)



    This looks interesting.

    On another note, I think you're focusing too much on the Show&Tell MU.
    This is obviously bad and will stay that way.
    It's probably best to not demonstrate or only do it at the start and gamble to get the ball rolling.
    Rather, focus on the other MU where can easier edge out a win.

  17. #17
    Member

    Join Date

    Sep 2011
    Posts

    4,928

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Quote Originally Posted by Zoid View Post
    Rather, focus on the other MU where can easier edge out a win.
    Those should be easy. The deck is so redundantly built: 38x land 18x Creative Technique 4x Emrakul. Consistent goldfish should be easy. Matchups with minimal resistance should be easy. Unlike Hypergenesis or Living End, the threats are ALSO the cascade engines and come from the library instead of a vulnerable zone (GY or hand), so the engine is much lower variance.

    The important question is how to help it fight bad matchups: disruption or faster combos. Especially because there is narrow design space to board in any tools without breaking the engine.

  18. #18
    Well, Attempted Rationalism at least.
    Rationalist's Avatar
    Join Date

    May 2015
    Location

    King County
    Posts

    180

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Quote Originally Posted by FTW View Post
    It looks like decent tech. But when do you bring it in?
    Against expected non-Teeg Hatebears would be the idea (so largely D&T, Esper Vial, Humans style decks), but this is what I'm still naively trying to figure out. It boards in as an effect very smoothly without disrupting the ratios naturally in the deck, the degree to which that effect is worth a sideboard slot is not immediately clear to me though so I'm an infant grabbing at blocks at this point to see if they fit in the hole and just fishing for outside perspective on which blocks I should focus on jamming in the hole first.

    Quote Originally Posted by FTW View Post
    Is 1 Boseiju, Who Shelters All worth it to help force through the first copy?
    I don't think so. It's such an awkward 1-mana colorless ETB tapped land in a deck that's weakest point is often mana-disruption (EDIT: Well, mana-disruption and a quick combo if not v. a quicker combo). Even if I do cast Creativity off of it (which is itself only a minority of the hands since often you cast the cascader), it only protects one of the two copies from FoW, so it's specifically to stop the double-force line? I mean I did get double-forced + hydroblasted on the second creativity with 3 branches on the stack on Monday so it could come up, but I went on to win that game anyways just by jamming again later.

    Doesn't seem worth it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zoid View Post
    On another note, I think you're focusing too much on the Show&Tell MU.
    It just came up conversationally; it's not like a tactical priority of the deck build over anything else. Please don't over-interpret the fact that I wrote paragraphs of analysis in response as it being a focus of the deck, I do that for basically everything as time allows (I believe that post starts with a link for me doing the same thing in more depth for whether or not to include the second copy of a marginal land in WU Bomberman circa 2019 or so). I appreciate that no one here knows me or my background personally, but as an anecdote ever since my father was diagnosed with diabetes some years back he has taken to running analysis on graphs of his blood-sugar throughout the day, every day, and using them to optimize his diet and eating schedule, and behaviorally I'm very much my father's son if you know what I mean.

    I'm not focusing on Show and Tell from my perspective, I just spend half an hour plotting out the math for it because it seemed like a way to investigate a region of ignorance I had that was in the spotlight and it's what I do instead of ... tapping my foot or something.

    EDIT: Just to be clear that doesn't mean my analysis is ANY GOOD, I just mean I do it a lot, good or bad.

  19. #19
    Well, Attempted Rationalism at least.
    Rationalist's Avatar
    Join Date

    May 2015
    Location

    King County
    Posts

    180

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Quote Originally Posted by FTW View Post
    The important question is how to help it fight bad matchups: disruption or faster combos. Especially because there is narrow design space to board in any tools without breaking the engine.
    Just so. (nods)

  20. #20
    Member

    Join Date

    Sep 2011
    Posts

    4,928

    Re: 'Mississippi River' (All In Creativity Technique Combo)

    Quote Originally Posted by Rationalist View Post
    Against expected non-Teeg Hatebears would be the idea (so largely D&T, Esper Vial, Humans style decks), but this is what I'm still naively trying to figure out. It boards in as an effect very smoothly without disrupting the ratios naturally in the deck, the degree to which that effect is worth a sideboard slot is not immediately clear to me though so I'm an infant grabbing at blocks at this point to see if they fit in the hole and just fishing for outside perspective on which blocks I should focus on jamming in the hole first.
    That's worth a test at least.

    Chandra, Awakened Inferno could also be strong and is uncounterable (Esper), but doesn't cascade.


    Quote Originally Posted by Rationalist View Post
    I mean I did get double-forced + hydroblasted on the second creativity with 3 branches on the stack on Monday so it could come up, but I went on to win that game anyways just by jamming again later.
    Nice. I think that's one of the best things your build has going for it: redundancy. Even if you get countered, just about every nonland draw lets you jam again.

    SB Dragonlord Dromoka doesn't let opponent cast spells on your turn. Which means they can't counter your things, can't cast anything off Demonstrate, and can't even counter the Dragon. Is that unnecessary overkill?

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)