@gutocmtt In Vintage yes, as opponents tend to either have one large or many small blockers. In other formats where playing multiple 4/4s is more common, probably the OG Ball Lightning is still superior.

@evouga The odds of an opponent keeping multiple 4/4s back to block seems much less likely than them having a removal spell. Modern also has access to pump effects like Bushwacker and that Surge guy in which multiple creatures would be better than a single creature. Also, why are we talking about the Red Force?

I have a very serious question for the community regarding this card. So here goes:

Does anyone think this card as an early answer to artifacts justifies one or ALL of the following unrestrictions?

  1. Thorn of Amethyst
  2. Chalice of the Void
  3. Lodestone Golem

The reason I ask is that I think shops is going to be a hurting archetype very soon (with the existence of the new ouphe + this card + a lot of other tech that has been spoiled) and I think this card helps shore up a fair amount of the turn 1 feel bads that shop can bring forth. Like this is a turn 0 solution to chalice of the void + ravager or chalice of the void + overseer. It's also a turn 2 solution to chalice + sphere on the draw. I always thought the restriction of chalice was mostly the fault of the workshop archetype for abusing the card too much and that chalice being in the format was otherwise a good thing for deck diversity and meaningful choice when it came to deck building. The possible upsides I could see to bringing it back would be:

a. Make Misstep way less of an auto-include in the format because Chalice @1 stops the cannibalizing of 1-drop.

b. Allow more hate decks to run it and open up a resurgence of certain archetypes like Blue Moon.

Now, here are the possible disasters to unrestricting Chalice:

a. Chalice + Lavinia seems probably too busted.
b. Eldrazi could perhaps abuse Chalice too much because of the diversity of card types it runs alongside Ancient Tomb and perhaps we'd be right back in the same coin-flip feel bad situation we were right before it got restricted.

Anyway, just curious to hear people's thoughts.

@gutocmtt

Ball Lightning is unplayable and so is the red Force.

@stormanimagus

I don’t think Shops needs an unrestriction in the slightest bit.

@vaughnbros said in [MH1] Force of Vigor:

@stormanimagus

I don’t think Shops needs an unrestriction in the slightest bit.

I think it's pretty clear that thorn would be safe to come off and should never have been restricted in the first place. The other two cards are farrr more unsafe to unrestrict.

@vaughnbros said in [MH1] Force of Vigor:

@gutocmtt

Ball Lightning is unplayable and so is the red Force.

😱

@stormanimagus
Eldrazi has been the best deck in the challenges since Karn the Great creator has been released on 3rd May.

It has gone
6-0 on 25th May
6-0 on 18th May
5-0 on 4th May

The deck that went 6-0 on the 11th was Karn Workshop deck with every available sphere effect.

In the leagues on the 26th and 19th May, respectively Eldrazi went 5-0

@nba84 Undefeated record is not a very good criterion. The undefeated players in the last round of the swiss often scoops on MTGO because play/draw has not been implemented and ranking doesn't matter. It's like players taking an intentional draw to go eat but that isn't enabled by the client so someone generally just concedes.

Eldrazi also does have a rough Shops matchup from experience (though it's gotten better with Karn). When it won on the 8th, there were no Shops decks in the top 8. The next week, Shops dominated, in part because Eldrazi was popular having won the last challenge. The week after, the eldrazi player lost to ravager in the finals and Karn Shops won. The next week, the same eldrazi player played against blue players and won the event. This week, Karn Shops beat Karn Drazi in the finals. That doesn't make it not the best deck. There is a bit of metagaming here.

@stormanimagus No, it's very not clear. I had to block you on facebook because of how not clear it was and your unsolicited rants about the data we were collecting.

Seriously, wizards just banned three cards in pauper and said in their most recent announcement:

Over the past several months, we've observed a rise in both play rate and win rate of blue-based decks in Pauper, with Blue-Black Delver sustaining a +55% win rate on Magic Online.

We recorded Shops with Thorn at a 60% win rate.

@chubbyrain Yes, but a lot has changed since thorn was restricted. The hate cards for shops as an "aggro-blitz" deck have improved and the metagame has shifted more towards PO than Xerox (at least that is my general understanding of the meta). I also don't partake of the online meta so most of my theory comes from a couple places:

  1. My local meta
  2. Anecdotal reporting of other local metas from Vintage players I talk to.
  3. Tournament reports on TMD.

Based on these 3 things I don't think Thorn of Amethyst would somehow "break" shops again as an archetype because players are already moving away from Overseer Shops in favor of other builds and those other builds wouldn't be able to abuse Thorn quite as much. Just thinking logically here, would a player really want multiple thorns in play when their plan A is to resolve one of 5-7 copies of a Karn Planeswalker?

As to your unsolicited rants comment, I'm truly sorry that I caused you headaches in the past, but it's in the past and I'm trying to discuss the effects a REAL new card might have on the meta and the type of shift it could cause. I have no interest in being lectured at for perceived past indiscretions. I want to move the conversation forward and not reopen that can of worms. Please keep things civil.

@stormanimagus Thank you for the apology but you are repeating the same things from before with regards to MTGO data, your local metagame, and anecdotal reports. The tone is different but the content is unchanged.

I can only say that MTGO is the most robust data set that we have and it is routinely cited by WotC in their B&R announcements. Empirically, PO has put 2 decks in the top 8 of the last 5 challenges and none in the last 3 weeks. There were two PO decks in last weeks top 32 (17th and 22nd).

Theoretically, one of the reasons PO got better against Shops was because of the restriction of Thorn. That lowered the amount of Sphere effects, especially the number of asymmetrical sphere effects, and made Hurkyl's Recall a viable option for PO. PO decks actually had time to cast Hurkyl's Recall now.

And logically, you can't say

@stormanimagus said in [MH1] Force of Vigor:

I think it's pretty clear that thorn would be safe to come off and should never have been restricted in the first place. The other two cards are farrr more unsafe to unrestrict.

...when you are drawing on your local metagame and anecdotal evidence (or TMD posts while ignoring MTGO data). By definition, those are relative to only you. My local metagame and anecdotal evidence is very different from yours, and I only pay a passing interest to the monthly 16 person events posted on TMD when I get access to weekly 60 person events that I can often watch the game replays of, or even watch players playing the games live via stream.

last edited by Brass Man

After considering Force of Vigor in Vintage Pitch Dredge decks, I have made the following findings in adding Force of Vigor to the sideboard and to the main deck of Pitch Dredge.

Adding Force of Vigor to Pitch Dredge will have to include additional green cards to exile to Force of Vigor in order to cast it.

I have found that most Pitch Dredge decks use a creature to give your other creatures haste such as Flame-kin Zealot and Dragonlord Kolaghan. While both are effective they are neither blue nor green that can be exiled to Force of Will or Force of Vigor. I believe Maelstrom Wanderer is a good alternative to be added to Pitch Dredge that is both blue, green and can be exiled to cast Force of Will and Force of Vigor and should be added as the “Haste” creature.

Force of Vigor in the sideboard:

I would like to recomend three different sideboard options that can utilize Force of Vigor. These recommendations assume that there are four Golgari Grave-Trolls and a Maelstrom Wanderer in the main deck.

Sideboard option one:

4x Force of Vigor
4x Noxious Revival
3x Shambling Shell

Shambling Shell can be take the place of Golgari Thug and can be exiled to Force of Vigor. The ability to be Dredged to your hand after being discarded or dredged from you library makes it an excellent candidate for the sideboard. Shambling Shell is also a green card that can be added to the deck without causing much disruption to the natural workings of Dredge decks.

I find that adding four Noxious Revival would be good candidates for being cards that you can exile to Force of Vigor. Noxious Revival is a good utility cards in Pitch Dredge decks allowing you to recover a Bazaar of Baghdad and getting a second Bazaar from your graveyard. Noxious Revival is also good at getting utility cards from your graveyard such as Force of Will, Force of Vigor or getting a Hollow One into your hand. Other applications include putting a card onto of your opponent’s deck that they may not want, saving a Bridge from Below from being exiled and putting a Narcomoeba on top of your library.

Sideboard option two:

4x Force of Vigor
4x Basking Rootwalla
3x Vengevine

Sometimes there is an opportunity to sideboard cards in that make your deck more aggressive rather than to come up with answers to hate cards. Survival decks have been popular for playing Hollow One, Basking Rootwalla and Vengevine with Bazaar of Baghdad. Hollow One and Bazaar of Baghdad are already in the main deck and Basking Rootwalla and Vengevine are both green cards that can work well in Pitch Dredge when combined with Bazaar of Baghdad and Hollow One. In my play testing I do find that getting the appropriate combinations of cards into your hand is inconsistent. But there are a limited number of green cards that work well in Pitch Dredge and this may be a good option.

Sideboard option three:

4x Force of Vigor
4x Elvish Spirit Guide
2x Nature’s Claim

This option allows there to be six cards that can destroy artifacts and enchantments that work well in combination with each other. Elvish Spirit Guide and Nature’s Claim can be exiled to Force of Vigor. Elvish Spirit Guide can be used to cast Nature’s Claim as well as be able to pay for taxing sphere effects when casting spells. Casting Force of Vigor may be consistent with this option, getting one of the four copies of Elvish Spirit Guide to cast Nature’s Claim is even more consistent alongside with Force of Vigor. This is the best option when working against Leyline of the Void since it has an option of casting Nature’s Claim and not relied of anything from the graveyard.

When sideboarded into the main deck, all three options provide a total of sixteen green cards to be utilized with Force of Vigor. Golgari Grave- Troll has an increase chance of getting into your hand since it can be dredged back into your hand. I prefer option one the best when it comes to being the overall most effective.
Force of Vigor in the main deck:

With the London Mulligan taking into effect soon, Pitch Dredge may not rely on Serum Powder as much and there may be decks that do not include Serum Powder. Having the extra four spaces in Pitch Dredge may enable enough room to include Force of Vigor and counter magic as well as being well balanced and effective. The inclusion of Force of Vigor in a Pitch Dredge deck without Serum Powder is demonstrated in the following deck.

4x Bazaar of Baghdad
4x Bridge from Below
4x Stinkweed Imp
4x Cabal Therapy
4x Hollow One
2x Ichorid
2x Dread Return
1x Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite
4x Narcomoeba
4x Prized Amalgam
4x Force of Will
4x Mental Misstep
3x Force of Negation
1x Maelstrom Wanderer
4x Force of Vigor
4x Noxious Revival
4x Golgari Grave-Troll
3x Shambling Shell

There are twenty blue cards and sixteen green cards in the deck, this should be enough cards to support the pitch cards that are in the deck while being balanced and effective. This is of course if Pitch Dredge can still be played without Serum Powders when the London Mulligan takes effect.

Notable creatures to put in Pitch Dredge to help support Force cards are Domia, Sage of Stone, Muldrotha, the Gravetide, Prophet of Kruphix and Hogaak, Arisen Necropolis.

I would like to thank Dr. Rich Shay for recommending to use Shambling Shell as a possible card to pitch to Force of Vigor.

last edited by Daniel Worobec

As a general rule you usually don't sideboard dredgers, you usually replace the worst ones in the main. So Dakmor Salvage, Life from the Loam, and Darkblast usually take maindeck slots from Golgari Thug rather than occupy sideboard space.

That said I really like Maelstrom Wander, I think that's a suggestion we should take seriously.

Vengevine is interesting, I've tried to build around him as a Dredge option for Modern quite a bit and never really got there. I don't think the card pool is particularly better in Vintage, and you have a lot more hate to deal with. It doesn't really do you much good to invest a lot of card slots into a plan that also loses to all the same hate. I would like Vengevine more as part of the main Dredge plan, displacing things like Dread Return entirely, which would of course eliminate the haste creature from the list. Perhaps Hogaak, Arisen Necropolis should be considered in the place of the Dread Return package, seeing as he is green and quite worth returning on his own. Of course, if you return two in a turn that triggers Vengevine so that's a possiblity as well.

Hogaak is really, really good. So that's at least a couple of extra Green cards you should be playing in the main.

@Daniel-Worobec @ajfirecracker I have a lot to say about this because I have thought a lot about Dredge sideboards.

I have found that most Pitch Dredge decks use a creature to give your other creatures haste such as Flame-kin Zealot and Dragonlord Kolaghan. While both are effective they are neither blue nor green that can be exiled to Force of Will or Force of Vigor. I believe Maelstrom Wanderer is a good alternative to be added to Pitch Dredge that is both blue, green and can be exiled to cast Force of Will and Force of Vigor and should be added as the “Haste” creature.

I think this is a really good idea with some good reasoning behind. I think that the inclusion of "pro-active" cards like Force of Vigor, and creatures (duh). I think with the inclusion of Maelstrom Wanderer increases the value of Hogaak, Arisen Necropolis as it is a bigger payoff to Cascade into than most of our cards (being either small creatures or counter spells).

Sideboard option one:

4x Force of Vigor

4x Noxious Revival

3x Shambling Shell

I have done quite a bit of testing with Noxious Revival and I am pretty confident that in a "normal" Pitch Dredge shell you often want 2-3 but that 4 is to many. Also as @ajfirecracker said there is little to no value of playing Dredge cards in the SB.

I find that adding four Noxious Revival would be good candidates for being cards that you can exile to Force of Vigor. Noxious Revival is a good utility cards in Pitch Dredge decks allowing you to recover a Bazaar of Baghdad and getting a second Bazaar from your graveyard. Noxious Revival is also good at getting utility cards from your graveyard such as Force of Will, Force of Vigor or getting a Hollow One into your hand. Other applications include putting a card onto of your opponent’s deck that they may not want, saving a Bridge from Below from being exiled and putting a Narcomoeba on top of your library.

Yes! Noxious Revival is a very good card in my opinion for the Dredge SB and I think is a necessity in the current version as they are a lot weaker to waste effects than they have been in the past. As you can tell there are many, many uses to Noxious Revival and I have been very nicely impressed with it. My biggest complaint with it is that it is yet another source of card disadvantage in a deck with 8-12 pieces of card disadvantage which can lead to you being unable to fully capitalize on its power at times.

Sideboard option two:

4x Force of Vigor

4x Basking Rootwalla

3x Vengevine

Again, like @ajfirecracker said I do not think Vengevine has a spot in the SB of Dredge as it is weak to all of the same things that our other creatures are. Basking Rootwalla is a card that I really like and have thought about a lot in the past and I think can spawn a new type of SB for Dredge because of Force of Negation (I will expand on this later).

In my play testing I do find that getting the appropriate combinations of cards into your hand is inconsistent.

Ah, yes. The biggest advantage of Bazaar of Baghdad can also be its biggest weakness at times. This comes back to my point of not being able to fully capitalize on your powerful cards because you are so low on resources (ie you cannot resolve the cards you are digging for or you cannot dig as efficiently or quickly as you would like because you have so few cards in hand)> I have a few ideas on this later.

Sideboard option three:

4x Force of Vigor

4x Elvish Spirit Guide

2x Nature’s Claim

I like this and recognize that it is not a complete SB but you most likely need some answers to Containment Priest.

With the London Mulligan taking into effect soon, Pitch Dredge may not rely on Serum Powder as much and there may be decks that do not include Serum Powder.

I think this statement is very risky. If you look at the math you are roughly 97% to hit Bazaar without Serum Powder with the London Mulligan, yet with Serum Powder you are roughly 99%. Now assuming you lose every game where you do not have Bazaar of Baghdad in your opener and that you have a 50% win rate (when you have Bazaar in your opener) then the inclusion of Serum Powder boosts your overall expected win rate by roughly 1% (it is actually a bit more I think), and this number goes up the better player you are! So to cut Serum Powder you would have to find a set of 4 cards that boosts your win rate by more than roughly 1% for it to be worth it. Is that possible? Most likely. Have we found what cards yet? I am not convinced. Additionally Serum Powder increases the average number of cards in our opening hand which is also heavily correlated with winning the game for Dredge.

Notable creatures to put in Pitch Dredge to help support Force cards are Domia, Sage of Stone, Muldrotha, the Gravetide, Prophet of Kruphix and Hogaak, Arisen Necropolis.

I think Damia, Sage of Stone is a possibility as it allows us to have more cards in hand (more countermagic, resources), digging power, and speed but I think it may be win-more. If you could Dread Return a Damia is it better than Dread Returning an FKZ or DLK (most likely winning you the game on the spot)? As for Muldrotha, the Gravetide I think that you need to heavily tune your list for this to be playable as there is nothing we can play from the GY for value that we can not already, if you made a more land heavy list with Loams and such then it could be alright. Prophet of Kruphix seems really bad to me, not enough lands in the deck to use it, might as well DR a huge green creature. Hogaak seems worthwhile, not because he pitches (we want it to be blue and green for that) but rather because he seems viable post SB as he can be cast from GY through Priest and can be cast through Cage from hand for free.

4x Bazaar of Baghdad

4x Bridge from Below

4x Stinkweed Imp

4x Cabal Therapy

4x Hollow One

2x Ichorid

2x Dread Return

1x Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite

4x Narcomoeba

4x Prized Amalgam

4x Force of Will

4x Mental Misstep

3x Force of Negation

1x Maelstrom Wanderer

4x Force of Vigor

4x Noxious Revival

4x Golgari Grave-Troll

3x Shambling Shell

This seems like a good starting 60, but I think you want to shave some Shambling Shells for an Ichorid and a Force of Negation

I am now going to provide a few 60s and 75s that I think have some theoretical merit and will explain why.

1st List: May 4th Dredge

"Normal" Pitch Dredge with Force of Vigor

This is a pretty normal looking MD with some of the changes I suggested you make. I did not include the SB because I think it is one of the most complex and important decisions for Dredge.
For this version the SB needs to include between 2 or 3 of the following:

  1. Answers to GY hate (an the means to execute it).
  2. Another axis of attack.
  3. Redundancy.

The Antihate SB
Now when you break into option #1 you have a few targets. You must be able to deal with the following effects/cards as efficiently as possible:
Spheres
Wasteland
Containment Priest
Grafdigger's Cage
Leyline of the Void
Countermagic
Tormod's Crypt
Pithing Needle
Yixlid Jailer*
Rest in Peace*
Now the ones with a * are rarer or lower quality concerns because they are either not very good (RiP) or not very popular (Yixlid Jailer).
Now most SB include very broad and efficient answer such as Nature's Claim or Chain of Vapor. Because Force of Vigor fits this role we may be able to more carefully curate our SB with more powerful or narrow cards to be able to beat certain specific cards or matchups. With this in mind I propose Survival all-star, pet card of mine, and a card I have been thinking about a lot and testing a bit, Squee, Goblin Nabob. Yes, you read that right. Squee. In a Dredge SB. Here is the thing though, in matchups or situations where you GY is not permanently exiled (which is a decent amount since only 2 of the above cards achieve this) he is insane. While you GY may be "locked down" or you are unable to get your normal value out of it, Squee operates on a different axis than our other value as nothing is put onto the battlefield or cast, getting around Priest, Cage and Countermagice. Additionally he solves one of the biggest issues I have mentioned with Pitch lists; low resources (not many cards in hand). With Squee operation you are not only able to dig much more efficiently but your hand size will increase by 1 every turn provided you are not doing anything else. This is very important if you are looking for something like a Hollow One and want to keep your Countermagic live or the where you want to find your land for your anti-hate spell. As promised here is a suggested rough draft antihate SB along with a note on what role each card serves:

1 Squee, Goblin Nabob (Utility)
2 Noxious Revival (Utility/Answer)
4 Gemstone Mine (Mana)
1 Mana Confluence (Mana)
1 Vengeful Pharaoh (Disruption/Answer)
3 Chain of Vapor (Answer)
3 Nature's Claim (Answer)

The Delver SB
This is my take on option #2 (for @ajfirecracker it used to be Marit Lage).

4 Squee (Utility)
3 Noxious Revival (Utility/Answer)
4 Basking Rootwalla (Transformation)
1 Strip Mine (Disruption)?
1 Wasteland (Disruption)?
2 Hogaak (with some MD)

So this SB is extremely theoretical so far but the new Forces + Hogaak allow you to have what I think is a sufficient critical mass of not only free creatures that do not rely directly rely on the GY but also Counters to "ride" these highly efficient creatures to victory. This strategy is somewhat similar to Delver decks in Legacy but taken to the extreme. @brianpk80 has been very vocal recently about how Hollow One allows Dredge to "transform" into a Delver deck and I think this SB is mean to capitalize on that idea to the max. The Strip Mine and Wastelands are there because I would imagine you need a few lands in the Shops matchup, because it furthers your disruption while again being on a different axis and because it could really help you in the mirror.

I wanted to also just throw a few decklists out there to get more ideas brewing and to think of how the 60 impacts and complements the final 15.

3rd List: Blue.dec

How much interaction is to much? (How to piss off BPK)

Please let me know your thoughts and suggestions. If I made any mistakes or did something dumb please let me know as I stayed up way to late trying to do this since I got excited. I have many more ideas on the subject and have discussed it a lot and cannot wait to begin testing on MODO soon (PS if anybody is looking to sell Dredge on MTGO for a nice price PM me).

Edit: Fixed some counting stuff cause I am tired and bad at math. Also realized none of these lists have any GY hate so that could be an issue in an open meta.

last edited by Rat3dE

We're never going to cascade even with Maelstrom Wanderer

Gravecrawler is probably a must for a Vengevine-based list

I would be looking at additional anti-hate resources in the manaless context, including possibly manaless creature removal

last edited by ajfirecracker

This card is really, really good. I even bring it in against Oath as a removal for Oath itself or to just destroy two Moxen if I for instance have a Containment Priest in play or want to disrupt their mana development.

I believe that this will be the go-to anti-artifact sideboard card for Hatebears going forward. Especially now that the London mulligan is coming to stay.

last edited by Griselbrother

@rat3de said in [MH1] Force of Vigor:

The archetype is going to put me in an early grave. 😛

Great ideas here, and props to the thinkers who understand what an obscenely powerful wrecking ball this Megapitch Dredge stands to be.

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