Selkie Strike(s). . . AGAIN!



  • So, recently I've been trying to solve the Vintage puzzle of beating Shops, PO, AND Jeskai all at once and I've come upon an old friend: Selkie Strike! I'd love to make this deck good again as I was it's original founder back in 2008 or so. So I won't give a whole back-story on the deck unless folks want a whole article on that at some point. Suffice it to say, I think I've found a new variant of the deck that runs some new mana-denial elements that fit a lot more now than Stifle did back then. I believe the time may again be right for this sort of mild mana-denial deck backed up by counters, null rod effects, and tough to deal with beaters. So here is my current iteration of the list:

    Selkie Strikes. . .Again!

    // 60 Maindeck
    // 4 Artifact
    1 Black Lotus
    1 Mox Sapphire
    1 Mox Pearl
    1 Mox Emerald

    // 15 Creature
    2 True-Name Nemesis
    4 Noble Hierarch
    3 Cold-Eyed Selkie
    3 Qasali Pridemage
    3 Thalia, Guardian of Thraben

    // 3 Enchantment
    3 Stony Silence

    // 15 Instant
    4 Mental Misstep
    4 Force of Will
    3 Daze
    3 Swords to Plowshares
    1 Ancestral Recall

    // 18 Land
    3 Tropical Island
    4 Wasteland
    1 Strip Mine
    3 Tundra
    2 Misty Rainforest
    1 Island
    4 Flooded Strand

    // 5 Sorcery
    1 Time Walk
    1 Treasure Cruise
    3 Chart a Course

    // 15 Sideboard
    // 6 Creature
    SB: 4 Containment Priest
    SB: 1 True-Name Nemesis
    SB: 1 Kataki, War's Wage

    // 4 Enchantment
    SB: 4 Energy Flux

    // 3 Instant
    SB: 2 Steel Sabotage
    SB: 1 Swords to Plowshares

    // 1 Land
    SB: 1 Plains

    // 1 Sorcery
    SB: 1 Retribution of the Meek

    I would really be interested in the community feedback around this list. Thanks in advance!

    -Storm



  • Since you dropped cavern and the human theme, maybe this works.

    Otherwise, notion thief would always be better, even if 1 mana more its a drawer for you if surprise element, hits harder, and its a stopping of them ever drawing cards, which selkie doesn't.

    I like your mana denial plan, works good with noble you got mana they dont.

    Thalia doesnt mix too well with your dazes and fows and missteps though? But ill guess they counter thalia and then its free rollin.

    Check in with J0nas at cockatrice (yea the bug guy), he played a white weenie to some success.



  • The problem is, why play this over just a merfolk deck? Merfolks are gonna have the exact same tools with energy flux, daze+fow, cold-eyed selkie and your exalted pumps are what they have in lord of atlantis and the rest.

    Thats why i dont like your true-name nemesis card. I would consider sticking to the land destroy plan maybe even more with Ramunap excavator since we're green anyway, and MAYBE deathrite shaman to pump that up even more.

    Null rod over stony silence. Does white really justify the difference?



  • I'd consider some Trygons . They can also fly over tokens and other ground based obstacles with their evasion.

    It is a bit too rogue but Cephalid Constable is sooooo fun against a non creature based opponent with your Exalted creatures 🙂 Forcefeed them their own permanents


  • TMD Supporter

    I ran a few variations of Noble Fish through a few leagues and a Challenge last year to very middling results. It was during my early days using the MODO client, so the deck is not as refined both towards the metagame then nor the metagame now. There are obvious changes that need to be made now, but here's my list that got featured on Vintage 101:



  • I love this deck and decks like it. I think you need to recur the Wasteland/Strip mine with Ramunap Excavator. You probably need 2 Green Sun's Zenith and you will probably want to cut the White and add Red.

    The meta-game now is very different. You need Red for Ancient Grudge or By Force and some main deck Pyroblast with Lightning Bolt. The Green Sun's Zenith will add search and better filter for you since almost all of your creatures are Green. The White does not add enough against Shop and Pyromancer decks.

    If you want to keep White then your curve goes up since you really need Big Thalia and some type of good Planeswalker. Going with Red gives you a Dack Fayden option too if you want it.

    Also consider JVP or Snapcaster if you go with Lightning Bolt. It will look similar to Jeskai but it will play quite differently. You are looking for a BUG deck tempo to make it work correctly with Cold-Eyed Selkie replacing Bob for card draw.

    If you do keep White add Spirit of Labyrinth main, otherwise you need some hate for PO decks because they will own you. That's why you need the Pyroblasts and Ancient Grudges.



  • @moorebrother1 So you are essentially making it no longer Noble Fish? The deck is Bant. End of story. The reason being that white gives you Stony, Pridemage, Containment Priest, Plow, and, most importantly, Thalia 1.0. Thalia 1.0 + Wasteland + Daze is the reason this build works at all. Containment Priest and Plow, specifically, save you massive amounts of space in covering many matchups at once which decks like this need to compete. The Exalted Mechanic is also highly relevant with True-Name Nemesis vs. decks like Jeskai and Jeskai Superfriends. Also, Spirit of the Labyrinth won't work with Force of Will in this list because I need to be able to draw cards to support Force of Will.

    Also, @hierarchnoble, you are running 4 Force of Will and no discernible draw engine. That seems real bad to me. My list is running 3 Chart a Course and 3 Selkie to go with 1 Ancestral, 1 Treasure Cruise. To me, that is the bare minimum draw spells that will actually refill your hand enough to support early Force of Wills. Spyglass + Meddling Mage is cute, but I really don't think this deck can afford that level of slowness to only MAYBE hit a relevant card in hand. Cards like sensei's top can hide important cards on the top of deck, making Meddling Mage far worse. You can theoretically Spyglass a Sensei's Top but I still don't think it's great vs. like PO for example since tutors can help find the solution to mage (namely Balance) and if you name Balance they will just play their POs with impunity. I like that you are running my config of force/daze/misstep, but I also think that the 1 Horizon Canopy is sloppy and that your sideboard is all over the place. 1 Stony isn't going to cut it vs. the mopal lists in my opinion and I also think this deck looks like a sitting duck vs. Jeskai lists.

    Those are my thoughts as of now.



  • @stormanimagus I ran Noble Fish for most of 2011 - 2012 and played it at Eternal Weekend. I was suggesting to close some gaps that I see in your meta-game match ups.

    I built a version of your deck and I did not go with Thalia, I went with Shardless Agent. I the prison aspect of Thalia is just not good enough against Shops now, being very honest about it. The issue with the deck is speed and pressure.

    You do not have enough control against the aggro decks and you do not have enough aggro against the control decks.

    I love playing White and I think there is a balance here but Stony Silence does not stop Shops or PO, I assure you that it may help a little but I played PO and I dealt with Stony Silence against LandStill every time, I had to.


  • TMD Supporter

    @stormanimagus Your whole analysis reads like you read my list but not the context of the list, both the good and the bad. To restate, it was an unremarkable list that I played nine months ago. I posted it for posterity because some technology might be garnered from it.



  • @moorebrother1 said in Selkie Strike(s). . . AGAIN!:

    @stormanimagus I ran Noble Fish for most of 2011 - 2012 and played it at Eternal Weekend. I was suggesting to close some gaps that I see in your meta-game match ups.

    I built a version of your deck and I did not go with Thalia, I went with Shardless Agent. I the prison aspect of Thalia is just not good enough against Shops now, being very honest about it. The issue with the deck is speed and pressure.

    You do not have enough control against the aggro decks and you do not have enough aggro against the control decks.

    I love playing White and I think there is a balance here but Stony Silence does not stop Shops or PO, I assure you that it may help a little but I played PO and I dealt with Stony Silence against LandStill every time, I had to.

    The deck you're proposing is an entirely different one. Also, Thalia 1.0 is of course sided out against Shops.



  • It sounds like there has been some success with this deck now. I am happy for this and I'll build a version.



  • I like Sylvan Library more than Chart in these decks -- it doesn't pitch to force but it's impossible to remove. This deck isn't winning on turn 3 anyway.



  • @nedleeds I've considered running 1 in the past and may still do so but I don't think you could run more than 1 anyway because it doesn't stack and isn't blue. So, at most I'd do a 1/2 split of sylvan and chart. I really have come to like the burst that chart provides, though. I also really like that I'm not nuking my life-total to do so.



  • You could also run just 1 monastery mentor in there, since it's white anyway. You might need it vs young pyromancer decks.



  • Search for Azcanta could replace Sylvan Library/Chart a Course, is blue, and synergizes really well with Knight of the Reliquary or Ramunap if you decided to add either. Also binning that useless Daze or 2nd Thalia instead of drawing dead cards seems very good in a list like this.



  • Maybe a stupid question, but just asking: What actually happens if we just cut Force of Will?



  • @topical_island We probably no longer need to draw 2 + cards a turn haha. Force of Will is still one of the most flexible disruption spells ever printed and is run in blue decks for a reason.



  • @uvatha
    Turn two trygon with noble would be a beater, as well as ramunap



  • @yakuzaxrock said in Selkie Strike(s). . . AGAIN!:

    @uvatha
    Turn two trygon with noble would be a beater, as well as ramunap

    Neither does very much against Shops. Energy Flux is where you want to be at if you're playing Blue.



  • @topical_island I cut it back in 2010/2011 when I played this deck a lot it was very good back then. It really helped in the mirror since this deck was fairly heavily played at that time. I think now you would just lose to PO if you cut the FOW.


 

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