Two Card Monte



  • I built my list to play the way I play magic. If you ask me, I would tell you this deck is terrible. In fact, I always tell people this deck is terrible. It has served me well and continues to do so, and I will continue to play it. But if you are trying to tune a deck to consistently win at magic, there are probably much easier ways to do it. The pay off of this deck is that it can do powerful things with broken cards, but that does not change the fact that the core of the deck is 16 terrible cards that require specific synergy, that are easy to answer and stop, sometimes difficult to get into play, propped up by carving out the rest of the deck with a list of restricted cards, and then trying to glue it all together with the most awkward mana base the format has to offer. This deck is not for everyone. It is not always friendly to its pilot. It is not always forgiving to its mulligans. It is full of highs and lows. Some days I feel unstoppable, others I cannot win a game to save my life.

    This is all fine by me. This all falls into how I enjoy casting magic cards. If this does not speak to you, if this leaves you frustrated or always a turn behind, its possible that you should try something else.

    I just want to cast Demonic Consultation more times than anyone else at every event that I play.


  • TMD Supporter

    @shaman-ben I appreciate the input, but I would not call it 16 bad cards. Leyline is great, Painter is decent, and the other two... well, they are there. heh.

    Though, I'm not sure how I should take you telling me I should possibly try something else when I was just noting things from my last play through. Maybe just a misunderstanding. Painter is my all time favorite artifact, of course I want to play it.



  • @mdkubiak my statement was in general, not specific to your post. I encourage you to try things out in the deck. There is plenty of room. I have tried oath, dark depths, all sorts of weird stuff. Play with the mana. Try dark confidants. You definitely gotta find a way to make it work for you if you want to win.

    But you also have to put your leylines in to play.

    Thats probably the most important part of the deck.


  • TMD Supporter

    @shaman-ben My apologies, I misread your statement. That's my fault. Of course I want to win, but I just want to start playing a list that really works for me. 🙂 I find the deck a lot of fun and want to continue to play it. Just a little frustrated with myself for being on some awful losing streaks with the deck.

    Yeah... those damn Leylines. Heh I wish I could say I only did that once (though only once yesterday).


  • TMD Supporter

    One other note @Shaman-Ben. Demonic Consultation is an awesome card. Love it. 😄



  • @jaco Went 3-1 (7-2) for 2nd place with your list yesterday, swapping Confluences for Cities and Pyroblasts for Red Blasts on a because-I-own-them basis.

    Two of the four decks I played against were heavy control decks. Welder is an all star in these matchups. He costs 1 so they frequently forgo artifact hate to leave in Misstep. As long as you can get some artifact, any artifact, into play, you can get your win cons.

    I also got to do my favorite 2CM welder move: Activate Grindstone, maintain priority, weld out Grindstone for Painter. My opponent had to think about that one for a bit to figure out when he was supposed to cast his answer.

    I did run into a bit of trouble with Dack Fayden. Normally, I'd wait until I had the win in hand, castable, and activate-able. Against Landstill, this was tough game one as I got Strip/Wasted turns one, two, and three. Game two, he cast three Force of Will, two Misstep, and two Mana Drain.

    Daretti never did anything other than eating countermagic. Nevertheless, I really like the idea of him in this deck. All three abilities are relevant. I figure if you can land him, they're probably out of countermagic, so you can ultimate to get back the win condition they countered.

    A couple people both online and in meatspace and online expressed disbelief at my playing Bob. I was actually a big fan of him. By my quick count, the average CMC of the deck is 1.35 and fully 25 cards (42%) are CMC 0. Given the lack of "answers" played in this deck, the information revealed to the opponent is rarely relevant. I greatly appreciated the additional card draw. Incidentally, Bob also dealt a considerable amount of damage to my opponents, including being lethal when I instead cast and activated a combo kill. I really like having the additional out against Null Rods and other artifact hate.

    On the subject of a less-hateable kill, I've usually added a Tinkerbot to 2CM. Multiple times during the day, I had Tinker in hand but nothing particularly useful to get. I think I'd add it here.

    It seems like most people consider it a black and white choice between Welder and Draw 7s. I'm not so sure that's the case. I'm going to try a Wheel with Welder - besides drawing 7, it enables more Welder shenanigans.


  • TMD Supporter

    @thecravenone Nice! I think there is a lot more room to play with this deck than people may think. I've had an idea floating around my head, could be atrocious, but I have had zero chances to try it out for months. Bleh.



  • @mdkubiak Sounds like you should post it here for us to ridicule! 😛


  • TMD Supporter

    @thecravenone Not until I get a chance to try it out. 🙂


  • TMD Supporter

    This is what I've been tinkering with. I have no idea if this is any good (I have a suspicion it will fall flat on its face), but I never have gotten the chance to try it out.

    *Ignore the sideboard for the most part. I've given little thought to it.

    The things you normally don't see in a 2 Card Monte list:

    • Foundry Inspector
    • Lodestone Golemn

    Foundry Inspector
    In multiple match-ups, I lost because I was 1 mana short on certain turns. I kind of wondered, would an artifact cost reducer help in this deck like it does Ravager shops? Hard to say, but I felt and still feel it may be worth the try. This also adds the benefit of being an okay body (3/2). Which is something this deck can have trouble with, so buying a turn or two might be the difference between a win and a loss. Though, since this isn't really directly helping to pull off the combo, it very well could be a liability.

    Lodestone Golemn
    A great beat down body and with the main focus of this deck being artifacts, this can slow down an opponent. I think the body of the Lodestone helps tremendously and can impact a game. I'm quite less keen on this one and might be better as a Dark Confidant, Foundry Inspector, or maybe even a Tezzeret.

    Overall
    What I wanted was to get a little bit away from in the deck is being too all in on the combo, which is why I cut the draw 7 cards. The version I ran in the past, most likely due to my inexperience and misplays than the build (I trust @Shaman-Ben's deck building), I felt it fall on it's own face a lot and I was hoping to top deck. I wanted to shore up some of the weaknesses in that build, so I wanted to add a bit of a creature package (Lodestone Golemn, Foundry Inspector, Dark Confidant).

    I flirted with unique 2 Card Monte ideas such things as: Phyrexian Revoker, Sphere of Resistance, Red Daretti, Thorn of Amethyst, Induced Amnesia, etc. (I'm sure there's more, but that's what I can think of right now). None of them felt right, except maybe, Induced Amnesia. I think Goblin Welder could be excellent and is probably the correct path for me to take, but I wanted to try an unique spin on the deck.

    I'm not sure if changing to Pyroblast is correct for the deck. Mostly did it because I sold my Beta Pyroblasts. If I was running Dack Fayden, I would for sure play Pyroblast.



  • @nedleeds Played this 75 today with the following changes:

    -3 City of Brass
    +1 Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth
    +2 Mox Opal

    I figured that while I really like Chromatic Lantern in the deck, even in multiples, it just combos so poorly with City of Brass. The only game that I was hurting for land, I kept no artifact mana and got double-wasted.

    Misstep was sweet. Game 2 on the draw against Bargain Storm, I kept this and won by playing a control game until I found my combo pieces.

    I definitely need to get used to playing control pieces again. I let a Recall sneak by forgetting I had the Phyrexian menace in my hand.

    I was surprised at how little I missed the extra Helms. I just happened to have always had the one-of when I needed it. I'm still a bit concerned about having only one when one of the four tutors exiles at random.

    On that note, my greatest 2CM play of all time is:

    Real men Demonic Consultation for restricted cards! I'll name Time Vault!

    Time Vault is the first card exiled

    That's why you don't name restricted cards with Demonic Consultation!



  • Highest-performing 2CM decklist from EW:

    Paradoxical Outcome is a cool addition and definitely makes sense given the number of artifacts the deck plays.

    I'm not sure I still like Ethersworn Canonists main.



  • I played the following pile of legal Magic cards at Saturday's Romancing the Stones Event

    I went 4-1 to make top 4, where I lost to end up in fourth. I beat Shops, PO, Dredge, and Shops. My loss was to Moon Stompy.

    The top 4 match against DPS was pretty interesting.

    Game 1: He kills me before I take my first turn
    Game 2: I assemble three half combos. At one point, I Helm for X=9, hoping to either hit his Sphinx or bin Yawg's Will. Behind me I hear someone say "OH MY GOD HE'S JUST MILLING HIM!" I eventually drew the second half of a combo to win.
    Game 3: I'm on the draw. I'm iffy on keeping this hand. It has a painter kill but zero protection. I'd much rather have a Leyline/Helm kill in hand to help stave off his first turn. I keep anyway and he kills me before I take my first turn. Upon further consideration, my hand was ~20% to draw into a turn one kill and 100% to kill on turn two.

    As much as I love Goblin Welder, I think it's time to switch to a Draw-7 build. With PO and Shops being huge chunks of the format, there's a ton of artifact hate floating around. I want the Draw-7s to find my answers to those problems faster.

    I have no idea how to build a sideboard right now. I brought five cards to destroy Null Rods, Energy Fluxes, and Stony Silences, but I could never find enough things to cut. Perhaps moving to a Draw-7 build will simplify that.



  • Hey everyone, I’m new to this deck and have enjoyed playing it online. The first time I played the deck in paper I had a situation where I had a leyline of the void and a grindstone in play. My opponent thought he was dead not knowing the combo so I activate grindstone, and he puts the first two cards of his library in the graveyard and then asks some questions to which I don’t respond and then he concedes. Is this some moral grey area of the rules or am I obligated somehow to clarify?



  • The correct answer to a rules question that you cannot/will not answer is "You should call a judge." Allowing someone to believe something false, especially after they've specifically asked you, is at the very least a dick move.

    In the situation you've described, the opponent would've violated a rule by placing cards into the Graveyard while Leyline of the Void was in play (Game Rule Violation). You would've violated a rule by allowing them to do so (Failure to Maintain Game State).



  • @thecravenone said in Two Card Monte:

    The correct answer to a rules question that you cannot/will not answer is "You should call a judge."

    This is true, but also, if it's a "will not," you can just go ahead and let them know how it works. When both players have a good experience, everybody wins.



  • @mathmentor said in Two Card Monte:

    Hey everyone, I’m new to this deck and have enjoyed playing it online. The first time I played the deck in paper I had a situation where I had a leyline of the void and a grindstone in play. My opponent thought he was dead not knowing the combo so I activate grindstone, and he puts the first two cards of his library in the graveyard and then asks some questions to which I don’t respond and then he concedes. Is this some moral grey area of the rules or am I obligated somehow to clarify?

    This could easily be “Misrepresenting the Gamestate” which is a DQ and possible suspension. Hard to know exactly what happened from your description.

    https://magic.wizards.com/en/events/coverage/ptaer/disqualification-in-round-5-of-pro-tour-aether-revolt-2017-02-03



  • @Mathmentor I don't think you've done anything wrong according to the rules. Provided you've said nothing untruthful or somehow misled your opponent or misrepresented the game state, it's your opponent's fault for not understanding the interaction. From the MTG rule book:

    A player should have an advantage due to better understanding of the options provided by the rules of the game, greater awareness of the interactions in the current game state, and superior tactical planning.

    @thecravenone I have my own personal beliefs on this (and I have called judges numerous times to explain interactions to my opponents), but again this is not a rules issue. If you go to the Player Communication section of the rules, there are a handful of things that a player is actually required to answer and everything else can be answered either partially or not at all. The one thing that is not allowed is a lie or misrepresentation of the game state, such as saying you can Stifle a Chalice trigger on 1. If done intentionally to gain an advantage, that constitutes cheating. The big thing is that Vintage players need to become more comfortable with calling judges. I think what you are saying is well meaning and I would encourage Vintage players at paper events to do this to try and break the stigma. But at Champs or SCGCons, it will never be the opponent's responsibility to call a judge for you.

    @craw_advantage That's how I want to play the game. 🙂 But you never know who you will sit down across from each round. If you know the rules, hopefully you can protect yourself, other players, and the integrity of the tournament as a whole.



  • @chubbyrain Oh, absolutely! I'm totally in agreement with you that people should call judges whenever it might be needed (and I think that's what @Mathmentor's opponent should have done rather than just conceding). If you need information and your opponent chooses to be unforthcoming, get it from a judge. But I also think that on more of a social level, if your opponent clearly is just unfamiliar with the cards in question and assumes that there's a game-ending combo on the board that they just don't understand, it's nice to do the friendly thing and say "no no, I have not killed you yet." Obviously there's no obligation to explain what the actual combos in the deck are or anything like that. And yeah this is always a tricky needle to thread at tournaments... I think most well-meaning people want everyone to feel welcome and have a good time, but unfortunately there's plenty of opportunity for the other player to be a butt and you do have to protect yourself from that too.



  • @craw_advantage When the Saheeli + Sun Titan Kill was new, I called a judge over to watch it. I didn't want the opponent to think I was pulling a fast one on them. I 100% agree with you from a moral point of view. I go to these events for fun and winning is a secondary objective to me. However, it is competitive REL and not everyone has the same mindset. I can't project my morals onto everyone in attendance. If someone has a much more competitive disposition, they are within their rights to let an opponent believe they are dead to such an interaction so long as the game state is intact (and aside from what may have been a mistype with "graveyard", the game state is intact) and the opponent didn't lie or misrepresent or mislead the opponent to create that belief. It's different with damage and life totals as this is "free information" but card text and interactions are "derived information". It's the players responsibility to understand what cards do, how cards work, and most importantly ask a judge if they are unsure.


 

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