Also, if you manage to cast a Squee, he's a goblin so your rabblemath would need to be updated.
Mandrills is sweet because it can be cast for G, Goyf is sweet because he can become a monster under the right circumstances for 1G. Rabble costs more than both, but provides additional value past his own body. Tasigur is probably just a smaller version of Gurmag Angler in this list as activating his 4 mana ability is not ideally where you want to be. Both Tasigur and Angler require black mana to cast which is somewhat of a downside. If I was going to pick a dude like Tasigur, I'd probably just go with the Angler instead.
The deck may just not have enough surprise value anymore, and as people on MTGO move away from SB options that target shops and PO, the incidental hate towards creature strategies goes up. I have seen a ton more plows, peacekeepers!, and sweepers (pyroclasm, verdict, deluge) recently, and it doesn't take a whole lot to throw off our game plan. Survival decks are going to need to adjust and evolve, and won't be able to bank on people making bad SB decisions and not really understanding how the combos work for long.
I have been having a real hard time against Jeskai Mentor and basically any deck that runs plows and snaps with FoW. I have lost games where I dropped 12 power on board turn 2, and I have been ultimated by a JTMS more than once. Survival at its core is not a control deck, but also lacks the focused aggro plan you might see from a deck like humans or fish. This shoves it into a weird place between combo and aggro/control.
@ritter Play more Dyrad Militant for a start! She is really good against jeskai. Secondly, sweepers shouldn’t impact you unless they are backed up by RiP. Your plan against jeskai is to grind resources with your Thalias and random attackers while building towards a great VV/Survival turn where they can’t deal with all of them. Try not expose them one at a time, instead work to get 3+ all at once. Obviously if you have a 9+ power Bazaar hand on t1 you go for it, but make sure you build up a hand to fight back if they deal with that. Don’t be super aggressive with Bazaar if you don’t have Squee, do it when you want to filter bad cards.
In general- I encourage people to STOP playing 3 cmc dudes you have to hard cast (like Manglehorn, Kambal, Queller, etc), at least in the main. They’re too hard to cast on time when you have to play Bazaar too. Instead opt for things like Mandrills, Dryad Militant, and Ingot Chewer- highish impact for 1/2 mana is better than super high impact for 3 cmc that you never cast.
For me the URw matchups (mentor/YP) are still pretty good. Actually they got a LOT better for me with DRS and dryad militant. I expected to have a little bit of problem with DRS mana-generating, but I've so far not noticed that problem. What I've noticed is that it's inclusion have improved my win rate. Do you guys have ideas for a black splash that would make this deck better? I've been wondering, as I've included a bayou to get the DRS activation mana, if there's something that would be worth splashing the color. I've played against GBxx versions of this deck, but at least in the mirror they were horribly bad, and brought nothing worth splashing for. But maybe there's something there that would make the splash worth it.
I totally agree with wfain in regards to the 3cmc spells, they are just never worth playing. If you play a silver bullet that's 3cmc hoping to get it with survival, well, if you have 4 mana to spend on survival you probably have better things to do. Which may include paying 2 mana on extra survival targets + ingot chewer, or paying 1 mana on other targets and getting thalia into play. Or just paying 4 mana to get 3 vengevine, 1 rootwalla and 1 hollow one into play, which is at the very least ok.
One thing I really was surprised was how good pyroblast has been. I didn't even consider it something in the first time I was getting this deck together, as there's no misstep to fight the "misstep wars". But it seems like usually people don't expect it and sometimes they can't even play around it (too much pressure) and waste their missteps in other 1 drops. And if they force the pyroblast, you kinda countered a force with a 1 mana spell, which is great. That being said, countering a walker, recall, outcome or force with pyroblast in an essentially naya deck is AWESOME!
I've been noticing how good thalia is against the blue decks. That's pretty obvious of course, but what I mean is that I will be trying the 4th copy of it, probably on the sideboard. The "non-combo-dependant" disruption + aggression (on vintage a 2/1 first striker is kind of a bully) have been ridiculous.
Thalia's been great, DRS, pyroblast and no 3cmc spells have become kinda no-brainer to me.
@GutoCmtt @wfain Would you mind posting a list? It sounds like you are running the full 5 colors with Thalia, Pyroblast, DRS etc., and I'm interested to see how you allocated spots for ESG, DRS, and your lands. I've also been thinking a lot about off color moxen and a 5C list could potentially run all of them. I've found that emerald and pearl are great, while the rest go from game breaking on T1 to worse than a green producing land mid to late game.
Has anyone been trying Riftstone Portal recently? It was a staple of lists near the top of this thread, and kinda died off. I've been running a singleton and it has definitely been better than another fetch. If you are running DRS, I can see an extra fetch being more valuable, especially if you are color fixing for a 5C list.
@ritter I haven't tried riftstone portal, but it seems as good with bazaar as it seem bad without it. It's like an extra land drop when you have an early bazaar into survival. But many times you get to keep a 1 land hand with off-color mox and some mana dork, and with riftstone you just wouldn't be able to do so.
The list I'm running atm is:
I played with Portal for a while when I first went to 4 Bazaar (somehow I was stupid enough to think 3 was right in my first drafts). It's fine but wildly swingy. I find that this deck is already a bit swingy by nature, so I wanted to mitigate that as much as possible- that meant lessening the amount I rely on the GY to produce value as it is the most likely area for us to be attacked in games 2-3. That's why I moved off Portal, Anger, and why I don't play 4 DRS.
In addition, I think approaching this as a combo deck is incorrect. For me, the value of the deck is its ability to take whatever role is required in a given matchup, or even a given starting hand.
@covetousrat Awesome! I look forward to seeing the list!
Not to sure where are the top 8 list as i don't understand Japanese. This is the website
This is the video for the finals.
Here is the decklist from the deck tech (not the decklist that won):
4 Basking Rootwalla
2 Deathrite Shaman
3 Thalia, Guardian of Thraben
1 Dark Confidant
2 Elvish Spirit Guide
2 Squee, Goblin Nabob
1 Big Game Hunter
1 Kambal, Consul of Allocation
4 Hollow One
1 Tasigur, the Golden Fang
1 Black Lotus
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Mox Jet
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Emerald
1 Ancestral Recall
4 Survival of the fittest
1 Thorn of Amethyst
1 Time Walk
1 Chalice of the Void
1 Tropical Island
3 Windswept Heath
2 Verdant Catacombs
2 Wooded Foothills
4 Bazaar of Baghdad
1 Kambal, Consul of Allocation
2 Stony Silence
3 Energy Flux
4 Leyline of the Void
4 Mindbreak Trap
If that's the list, that seems like a very low number of black sources for all of those black cards. Maybe it's okay because they're not part of the main gameplan, but I'd be very concerned about getting my one Bayou hit by a Waste/Strip.
Another interesting point is that this list swaps out a couple mana dorks for more utility creatures, at least compared to most of the lists in this thread.
EDIT: I suppose DRS works as another black source too...maybe this is fine after all.
@revengeanceful the winning list cut black/red entirely, and just played 4x Noble Hierarch (alongside triplex(!) Stony Silence main). I think he's probably right, though 0x Ingot Chewer feels awkward.
(I did build this on MTGO, and it's by far the most mind-bending deck I've played in a while. Figuring out your gameplan--much less how it fits with your opponent--is painfully difficult).