Yawgmoth's (Bargain Not Will) Unrestrictable?

@twerkshops Right... the game we are playing is basically, prove the restriction. We are trying to come up with lists that break cards ON the restricted list so as to prove that they should stay on the list. (Easier than proving that they should come off, since you can't ever really know without actually bringing them off, or creating some big data model of the entire metagame... cough cough, wizards?)

@twerkshops Why are crucible and waste unhealthy? Would a Fastbond, zuran orb deck even work in the currect meta?

@vaughnbros I never said Crucible and Waste were unhealthy. Currently they are both value cards in decks that have other primary game plans. Unrestricting Fastbond makes Crucible a viable Plan A and I'm not sure Consistent Land Destruction Combo is a deck we want in the format.

I do not believe Zuran Orb is playable, unfortunately. If you really want to play a gimmicky combo, you can just assemble Fastbond+Crucible+2xFactories without the Zuran Orb and Channel+Fireball somebody to death if you have more life than them and they don't have blockers.

last edited by twerkshops

@twerkshops A consistent land destruction combo deck sounds great! A nice change up from having Shops as the only option for mana denial. The deck would still have to find ways to recover from creatures, and other threats after it establishes its mana lock. That isn't exactly easy in the current meta.

I also think you are overestimating how good Crucible+Fastbond would be without Zuran Orb in the current meta. Creatures are very real, and taking a bunch of damage to establish a mana lock would be very costly in certain situations.

@vaughnbros I never said anything about taking a bunch of damage to establish a mana lock.

EDIT: I've been solitairing URg Landstill with extra Fastbond for the last hour or so and am having way too much fun to keep saying that it should stay restricted. 😉

last edited by twerkshops

@Topical_Island said in Yawgmoth's (Bargain Not Will) Unrestrictable?:

@desolutionist I actually think Ponder would be even more dangerous than Brainstorm because of Tendrils Decks. The shuffle feature is very good for stitching together that sort of kill.

But you are a lot better player than me, what do you think? I just remember pre-restriction watching decks Ponder then Shuffle then Ponder then Shuffle then Ponder and then... Oh hey! Found it! You're dead.

Ponder is fine in storm decks, slightly better than preordain at finding one specific thing, but preordain has more value on subsequent turns and is better in decks with redundancy. Neither of them are even remotely close to brainstorm.
If that effect was really that good in storm you would see more lists with preordain(s). The only decks that really pose a threat with ponder are(were) decks with gush (enabling a critical mass for gushbond decks and making gush aggro control decks slightly better than they were already).

Oath of druids on the other hand would really benefit if ponder was unrestricted as it is much better than preordain at finding one of your 4of combo pieces. It would run smoother which is something it desperately needs.

Fastbond could have been unrestricted when gush was still legal and it would likely not have been problematic, seeing as mentor gush was the superior strategy to combo gush because of how horrendous the thorn matchup is for combo gush, and having multiple fastbonds doesn't magically solve the thorn problem. So even with unrestricted fastbond the metagame would have likely still been centered around mentor gush and not the gushbond engine.

Without gush abusing fastbond simply isn't that interesting, 3 card combos aren't good enough for vintage. The power level barrier for combo decks is extremely high considering that you have to measure up to Oath of druids, time vault, tendrils and monastery mentor.
I would love to see a value deck with a combo finish based around fastbond and crucible/Life from the loam but I highly doubt such a deck would be competitive enough in vintage. The combo is to easy to shut off with either mental misstep or artifact removal/null rod, something like abrupt decay would annihilate it.

@Macdeath So you're conclusion is that Fastbond is safe to unrestrict, and that Ponder is unsafe, but not due to storm combo but rather due to blue tempo decks?

@Topical_Island really enjoying the list you put together. I like that landfall features as well!

I also like that it looks unlike other vintage pillars. More or less. How many different matchups have you tried?

@BandsWithOthers Only against Tempo-Mentor... It's good, not crazy, but seems unfair. I bet if it existed people would be complaining a lot...

The really interesting one is the Paradoxical, Horn, Lotus Cobra, Fastbond one I'm on now. That seems borderline busted... Like when you play extra copies of Fastbond off Lotus Cobra mana then pick it all up with Paradoxical and draw a million. Bleh. It goes off pretty nicely through Null Rod too. Usually on about turn 3-4, through a Goldfish who starts with Rod on the table. I want to test it against White Eldrazi next. I think that is really the test. If it's busted against that, then it's just busted... which I'm pretty sure it is. I'm not even good at this stuff. Just Imagine what Rich Shay would do to people with 4 Fastbonds.

(My favorite new play is Fastbond, into Lotus Cobra, into restricted Gush, into Green Sun's Zenith for Eternal Witness, into second restricted Gush. Cobra is also pretty sweet against Thorn too.)

People always look at the busted plays that would be caused by unrestricting a card but fail to talk about how it does in a grind/through resistance. That is what would interest me more with fastbond. You need to see how the card does there. If it's a consistent difference maker in the "margins" games that hinge on a tiny swing of tempo/card advantage than THAT is what matters and would make the theoretical deck it is played in too dominant.

All this being said, Crucible + 4 Fastbond SEEMS pretty busted at first glance, can just imagine wasting a board for minimal life loss and mana-screwing decks right and left.

My thoughts,


@Stormanimagus That is exactly what I am doing. Building the most broken deck I can, then testing it through the most common decks in the format... you know (DCI)... playtesting.

@Topical_Island said in Yawgmoth's (Bargain Not Will) Unrestrictable?:

@Macdeath So you're conclusion is that Fastbond is safe to unrestrict, and that Ponder is unsafe, but not due to storm combo but rather due to blue tempo decks?

I actually believe ponder is a safe unrestrict now that Gush is gone (but I'll admit I have a rather open view of what should be on the restricted list).

The most obvious problem i see with the fastbond lists posted in this thread is that they would fall pray to fast combo and dredge. Crucible, fastbond + waste is far from unbeatable and even with strip mine if you have rituals or mox opals you are going to be happy that your opponent spent so much resources on something you can just goldfish your way through. Non combo decks can win by waiting to make their landdrop and resolve a game ending spell or use their jewelry.

A deck that wants to win with zuran orb can't really play null rod, although to be fair you probably will have 3 copies of dack fayden in that deck which will help against artifact mana. Lotus cobra wasn't really playable even with a deck built to abuse it (gifts gush), it tends to be win more. A deck can only go so far with a bunch of "do nothing" cards. Deathrite shaman might be better.

Against most blue decks your engine is going to take too long to get online although if you do manage to get it online you are probably going to be very far ahead and your win con will be a lot more sluggish than theirs + you probably won't have as much space as them to play interactive cards.

It's a beautiful and very fun engine, but I don't think it has what it takes to be viable in the vintage metagame (much like other powerful and cool decks like gifts or rector omni).

last edited by Macdeath

I think the optimal Fastbond list plays spheres and Rods. I don't think Fastbond is safe to un-restrict.

I don't know if this is good enough but what about Fastbond + high tide cards?

If Fastbond ever becomes unrestricted than we can't make fun of World Champ Mark Hornung anymore for asking why Gushbond decks didn't play 3 Fastbond.

last edited by Guest

@Aaron-Patten That is really interesting. I don't think I would ever have thought of that method. Got a list in mind?

@Topical_Island I think that some of the "mystique" of unrestricted Fastbond is that if it powers on a turn 3-4 win deck it doesn't seem any more degenerate than any other deck in the format. And since it would have natural predators and fare well enough against some and poorly against others (as @Macdeath points out), it seems like it could find a balanced place.

I would be interested as well to hear @Aaron-Patten ' s list. I think the trick would be, could Fastbond open a new avenue vs simply limbering up already dominant strategies. I have a feeling that a green leg of the thorn pillar is not necessarily something anyone wants.

Will be interested to hear Goldfish results vs shops and eldrazi.

@BandsWithOthers I mean, this is kinda threatens to reopen that other can of worms, but it's central to what I'm up to here... I frankly don't care what people want. That's kinda the whole point of doing this. I would like to actually test these cards and see if one can actually demonstrate real win rate brokenness.

If Fastbond is degenerate (which I actually suspect it is) in terms of winning, then it should be restricted. If not, not. If people don't "want" to play against some land destruction that is green for some odd reason, even though colorless mana denial absolutely exists already, and even if a green deck of that kind it isn't winning an oppressive rate, then I suggest that maybe checkers is their game. Heck, if they can't handle any such situation, playing decks that aren't very broken but which they don't like... #checkers. (I have a very big problem with the hue-and-crying sort, because their "fun" is just not more important than the fun of other folks who really like playing those decks.) So switching to checkers guarantees that those people will never have to be sad again, because the opponent didn't play nice and run the deck that they wanted to play against. And everyone will be happier for the move.

In terms of Fastbond, it smells pretty broken to me, though I can't actually claim to have proven that with a playtested list just yet.

last edited by Topical_Island

I don't have a specific list written up since I don't expect it's un-restriction and thus wouldn't want to spend the time on a hypothetical that I don't believe can ever exist; however, if you look at legacy lands lists of late you'll notice that they generally play Sphere of resistance as a 4 of. That's because they don't actually have to resolve anywhere near as many spells as their opponents do in order to win the game. With Fastbond in place of Exploration the gap between the number of spells required to win is even wider since the lands player can reliably get all their lands from hand into play on turn 1 instead of just an extra one per turn and all of this is with just one spell; Fastbond. This opens up lines where the opponent is easily locked out of the game indefinitely on turn 1. Shops prison aims to do the same thing and it has a powerful ally in Mishra's Workshop allowing it to put the appropriate permanents on to the battlefield on turn 1 and to keep them coming on all successive turns thus ideally outpacing the opponents ability to play lands. I believe Fastbond has the same potential in an appropriately constructed deck.

With Fastbond on the table there is very little cost to Strip Mine effects. In this scenario you're only paying a life and a card to destroy a land instead of also missing your land drop. Additionally with Fastbond on line Crucible becomes a one sided Armageddon (given that you also have one of nine strip effects) for one less mana and enables finishers as well as provides near limitless card advantage in the form of on board interactions on the turn. It also provides near infinite mana. Card advantage is much better when you are not limited by the mana costs of the cards you've gained.

Without any dependence on activating artifacts for mana Null Rod becomes one sided mana denial as well, turning off your opponents best main deck defense against your plan A; moxen.

This description so far lacks a draw engine of which there are several including Life from the Loam which is essentially an un-counterable repeatable Ancestral Recall and likely a 4 of in the main deck as it is in many Legacy Lands builds. In the Vintage version these three cards will not be limited by the number which can enter the battle field on that turn so it will be more of a literal Ancestral Recall in Vintage than it is in Legacy. Even more importantly I think that in the case of a Vintage Lands deck with Fastbond there would also be space for multiple Horns of Greed which is almost an instant win with a Fastbond on the table and is basically a guaranteed win in multiples. If you have Life from the Loam you're drawing at least 3 cards a turn and if you have a Horn of Greed you're likely drawing you're whole deck and placing it directly into play in the same turn given some menial life gain. Life from the Loam plus a cycle land means you will put as many lands from the top of your library into play as their are on top of your deck in a row with each non-land in the sequence costing only one additional mana each to burn past.

Academy Ruins can act as a way to get key artifacts from your graveyard after dredging them meaning that you get to use everything you dredge.

The spheres by themselves are strong against blue based strategies aiming to counter your key spells but are back breaking in any match up where the opposition has no mana as one would expect against a deck playing 9 strip effects and 4 Fastbond along side those 10 Spheres, X Null Rods, 4 Life from the Loams, and X Crucible of Worlds'.

So far this deck would appear weakest against creature based strategies but have no fear for The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale will assuredly arrive just in time to sweep away any pesky permanents your opponent may have stealthily slipped into play while attempting to play their "fair" deck against this monstrosity.

I'm not saying it's unbeatable, I'm just saying it's better than everything else by a mile.

last edited by Aaron Patten

@Aaron-Patten Wow! Nice Analysis! I think what we've been mostly talking about in this thread is for those who say Fastbond or Flash or Gush or whatever is unrestrictable, can we put up some proof that indeed the monster it creates would be bad for Vintage.

We all do plenty of broken, unfair stuff, but if it would lead to a dominating, homogenizing strategy then it's bad for Vintage.

That said, I'd be interested in seeing if this kind of Fastbond Prison deck would actually successfully lock out the other decks in the meta (@Topical_Island ahem) But this sounds like a very strong argument that our favorite wizard on a hill should remain a safe One-Of...for now...

The deck described would Have to stick a sphere or rod to make it work though it seems. Would there be decks like combo or dredge that could just outrace it? Oath probably would not care too much about rods and spheres and opposing wastelands could probably work a number on Lands to at least slow the tempo of such a deck. In any case. Both sides have compelling cases. Thanks to all for tolerating and helping move from hypothetical to empirical!

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