Mike Noble's Terrible Fish Decklist Dump Thread


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    Hi everyone!

    As some of you may know, my name is Mike Noble, and I love Fish decks. Occasionally I'll see a spoiler that inspires me to build a Fish deck including it, it'll get sent to @SamwiseKimchi over text, and I'll never actually build it, test it, or even look at it again. These decks are very formulaic looking due to being prototypes, but hopefully my heart is in the right place.

    My recent brews have been inspired by this decklist: https://www.mtggoldfish.com/archetype/vintage-wub-37001

    I like this deck for a few reasons. It's simple, only really containing mana, creatures, power, and a Chalice of the Void. It doesn't have any Misstep targets outside of Ancestral Recall. There is extensive mana so that Wasteland doesn't break our ability to actually cast spells.

    Since I sold out a few years ago, the month before the first Eternal Weekend, I've been operating on a budget. You'll see a lot of my brews reflecting this, as I try to actually stretch the colors so that Mana Confluence is more appealing than dual lands.

    I'll keep this initial post as an introduction. I hope to post many starting points for everyone to enjoy. Feel free to comment and make adjustments as you see necessary, but remember, these aren't done and I may never play them.


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    Cavern Wizards

    Nimble Obstructionist seems like a decent creature, especially alongside its 3-drop Wizard buddy, Vendilion Clique. I aimed at keep anything costing more than three mana as a flash creature since tapping out against Mentor at sorcery speed can create dire situations. While the creature counts and choices can be twisted around to your heart's desire, Nimble Obstructionist, Qasali Pridemage, and Dark Confidant feel like they always belong in some number, no matter the configuration.



  • I love the fact that Qasali Pridemage is in the list. Completely underrated card in vintage and severely underplayed imo.


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    I think Null Rod/Stony Silence is very well positioned right now. In the 6/17 Vintage challenge, Null Rod was my MVP against all of the PO decks. I'm surprised you don't run more, and you don't run Stony Silence in particular, since it is much more difficult to remove.



  • Posting decklists is fun, but couldn't you add what the deck's gameplan is, because it's not clear what it's trying to do. This deck looks like it would get absolutely crushed by Shops and the Paradoxical and Mentor matchups seem quite bad as well.

    I agree with Menendian that Stony Silence/Null Rod are absolutely necessary if you want to build a Fish/Hatebear deck right now.

    @HouseOfCards: Pridemage is good, but it's not as good as it used to be.


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    @Smmenen said in Mike Noble's Terrible Fish Decklist Dump Thread:

    I think Null Rod/Stony Silence is very well positioned right now. In the 6/17 Vintage challenge, Null Rod was my MVP against all of the PO decks. I'm surprised you don't run more, and you don't run Stony Silence in particular, since it is much more difficult to remove.

    The immediate update, then, would swap the Null Rod and probably 2 Bloodline Shaman for 3 Stony Silence.

    @Griselbrother said in Mike Noble's Terrible Fish Decklist Dump Thread:

    Posting decklists is fun, but couldn't you add what the deck's gameplan is, because it's not clear what it's trying to do.

    Fish is an aggro-control deck that sacrifices the raw speed of purely aggressive cards for disruptive elements. Mike Flores' "Finding the Tinker Deck" would define Fish as a CounterSliver strategy.

    EDIT: Finding the Tinker Deck



  • @mickey.nobilis said in Mike Noble's Terrible Fish Decklist Dump Thread:

    @Smmenen said in Mike Noble's Terrible Fish Decklist Dump Thread:

    I think Null Rod/Stony Silence is very well positioned right now. In the 6/17 Vintage challenge, Null Rod was my MVP against all of the PO decks. I'm surprised you don't run more, and you don't run Stony Silence in particular, since it is much more difficult to remove.

    The immediate update, then, would swap the Null Rod and probably 2 Bloodline Shaman for 3 Stony Silence.

    @Griselbrother said in Mike Noble's Terrible Fish Decklist Dump Thread:

    Posting decklists is fun, but couldn't you add what the deck's gameplan is, because it's not clear what it's trying to do.

    Fish is an aggro-control deck that sacrifices the raw speed of purely aggressive cards for disruptive elements. Mike Flores' "Finding the Tinker Deck" would define Fish as a CounterSliver strategy.

    EDIT: Finding the Tinker Deck

    Thanks for the response, but I was looking for a more detailed response. Ie. what is this deck specifically trying to do? What's the rationale behind the card choices? What's the gameplan against Mentor? Shops? Outcome? Oath?


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    @Griselbrother said in Mike Noble's Terrible Fish Decklist Dump Thread:

    Thanks for the response, but I was looking for a more detailed response. Ie. what is this deck specifically trying to do? What's the rationale behind the card choices? What's the gameplan against Mentor? Shops? Outcome? Oath?

    I have yet to develop a distinct gameplan, and therefore a sideboard, for specific matchups. This is the 60-card foundation from which I'd test and make minute decisions, more of a proof of concept at this point than an actual decklist. I'll see what I can do:

    Bloodline Shaman - Draws cards, although much weaker than Dark Confidant. I expect this card to be the first cut when/if I fine tune.

    Dark Confidant - A source of ongoing card advantage with only a small initial investment. While it can die to Swords to Plowshares and Walking Ballista, the cost makes it very possible to get him down on the first turn and force the issue and perhaps make your opponent lose tempo.

    Magus of the Unseen - A silver bullet against Time Vault, since you can take all their turns. It also has function as a combat trick against Workshops, or forcing opponents to sacrifice artifacts that you'd otherwise steal.

    Meddling Mage - A proactive counterspell against a deck's main pivoting point. Whether you're naming Monastery Mentor, Walking Ballista, Oath of Druids or Tinker, there is something against nearly anyone that will help delay your opponent just long enough to inflict some damage. I've been playing him in Fish since Zendikar and have always been impressed.

    Qasali Pridemage - While mainly for the Workshop matchup, he has the benefit of removing an opposing Oath of Druids or Time Vault as well. He's also a great "turn two" play, since he will pump your "turn one" play on the aggressive and often allow you to hold up mana to active him or activate a Wasteland/Strip Mine. Another holdover from my Noble Fish days.

    Nimble Obstructionist - A new guy, but one with promise. The flash is nice because it allows you to hold up mana for Qasali Pridemage, Wasteland/Strip Mine, and any of the Flash creatures. He's also a non-Duressable Stifle for Tendrils of Agony, among many other uses for his second ability. Untested, obviously, since he's not in consumers' hands yet.

    Vendilion Clique - Another all-star from my Noble Fish days. This guy is great in conjunction with a follow-up Meddling Mage, due to the new information, and can be snuck in to deal with a Jace.

    Venser, Shaper Savant - While pricey, being able to bounce any permanent can have quite the advantage. It's our only real maindeck out to a resolved Blightsteel Colossus, and can screw up combat math or all-in Arcbound Ravagers. The splash synergy with Karakas is nice too.

    Ancestral Recall - Restricted for a reason.

    Gitaxian Probe - Restricted for a reason, and amazing synergy with Meddling Mage. I made most of my Noble Fish money when I could run 4 of each.

    Demonic Tutor - Restricted for a reason.

    Time Walk - Restricted for a reason.

    Chalice of the Void - Not only can you deploy Moxen then follow up with this on the play, but our maindeck only contains 2 1-drops, which allows Chalice to be great against decks like Mentor.

    Null Rod - Shutting off the ability of Walking Ballista and Arcbound Ravager is just gravy to go along with the mana denial this card brings.

    I skipped the mana sources, but hopefully this provides a bit more insight into what this deck is designed to do.


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    I just realized that my initial deck forgot about Aven Mindcensor. I'm sure that replaces the last of the Bloodline Shamans.



  • I have only been following and playing vintage for a couple of years and fish has been no good since then which leads me to this question. What is a fish deck? I assumed it was a blue based deck with some merfolk but that didn't seem to be the case based on your decklist. I've picked up most of the names for things but this one has alluded me. Thanks!



  • Fish is essentially time walk, ancestral, a couple removal spells, and dudes. Most Fish decks are now of 1 creature type, humans, merfolk, or wizards being the main ones. I personally just call them dudes.dec. I do not know why Goblins and Eldrazi do not fit in the fish category, as IMO they are still an aggressive dude.dec that mainly uses the dudes abilities to disrupt the opponent until you tap said dudes ftw. Hope that helps.


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    @KingLeovold said in Mike Noble's Terrible Fish Decklist Dump Thread:

    I have only been following and playing vintage for a couple of years and fish has been no good since then which leads me to this question. What is a fish deck? I assumed it was a blue based deck with some merfolk but that didn't seem to be the case based on your decklist. I've picked up most of the names for things but this one has alluded me. Thanks!

    As said earlier:

    @mickey.nobilis said in Mike Noble's Terrible Fish Decklist Dump Thread:

    Fish is an aggro-control deck that sacrifices the raw speed of purely aggressive cards for disruptive elements. Mike Flores' "Finding the Tinker Deck" would define Fish as a CounterSliver strategy.

    EDIT: Finding the Tinker Deck


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    Was the deck Noble Fish named after Noble Hierarch or Mike Noble?



  • I dont think that guy was bigger than hierarch in her golden ages



  • I'd love to see what you'd do with a Bird tribal deck.


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    I received some feedback from people asking me what Fish deck I'm playing right now. I'm sorry to say, I've played one tournament since the most recent B&R announcement, and it was an 8-man with a homebrew that I went 1-2 with. However, I had a bit of success with the following Fish deck prior to the change, which is almost card for card how I have it configured for Legacy as well:


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    @The-Gremlin-Lord said in Mike Noble's Terrible Fish Decklist Dump Thread:

    I'd love to see what you'd do with a Bird tribal deck.



  • +4 Squadron Hawk and some number of JtMS for that sweet Brainstorm+shuffle action



  • @mickey-nobilis This is a genius idea for a thread.



  • @mickey.nobilis "the word" LMAO.


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