I would be very interested in if this can put up results as is. I love when a mono color deck can work. Few questions:

  • Chalice of the void? Seems like it would do work in the sideboard as another tool to hate on fast mana.
  • You have mostly 2 drops but very few ways to ramp into them (lotus, petal, mox) Should you consider curse catcher?
  • Daze seems middling when you have no 1 drops and are not playing a vial plan. Considering your draw engines look light as well I think that slot may be better served as a draw spell or even Gitixian Probe or ponder.


Thanks for the critique! I think your points are valid. I’m having internal struggles of playing Aether Vial or Null Rod. In terms of 1 drops, I think Cursecatcher is a good choice. Mistcaller doesn’t seem terrible either.

I hate to do it but I might cut some lords. UU is hard to cast in this deck. I think there’s a lot of room for improvement but I can see this being a solid deck to play.

With Thieving Skydiver to steal moxen and/or serpents and Hullbreacher to stop draw spells, I wonder how needed Null Rod is? Maybe vial does seem like a better choice.

last edited by Naixin

@naixin said in Merfolk:

With Thieving Skydiver to steal moxen and/or serpents and Hullbreacher to stop draw spells, I wonder how needed Null Rod is? Maybe vial does seem like a better choice.

I am not actually a fan of Vial in Vintage because you will be facing opponents who also are play null rods and for the most part Cavern helps you push things through. Vial does a lot better in decks that have 1 drop fish as well, which you do not.

I am of the mindset that you want to draw a lord, but not specifically 2 in every game, so I think cutting a LOA is a reasonable move.

Thieving is ok, but I think there will be matches where you are stealing mana rocks too late to matter. For 3 mana other lists get Dack which is leagues above thieving and in those decks typically easier to cast. I think you may want to consider cutting there for something more universally good.

I actually top 8'd the vintage challenge with merfolk a week ago, perfect 6-0 in swiss before punting away the match in top 8. This was before hullbreacher, so I would be cutting lords for that probably. https://www.mtggoldfish.com/deck/3543549#paper

@notmi Awesome! What is your opinion on Cursecatcher? And why Vial > Null Rod?


I played a few leagues with the deck with cursecatcher, and it was quite bad. On board tricks are a lot less effective than tricks in your hand. My plan with vial was to always be holding up mana for counterspells or wastelanding them to tax their mana. I went really heavy on counterspells under the idea that true name would win every fair matchup. I think with all the counterspells, combo is the best matchup, making rod a lot less necessary. Energy flux and skydiver are huge wins vs shops as well, and with a deck full of basic islands and forces, you generally get to cast your spells. During the challenge, I stole multiple huge stonecoils in multiple different games.

In my experience, the lords are by far the weakest part of the deck. Skydiver answers both of the cards out of shops that race you, ballista and stonecoil, and helps with the mana denial plan of 5 wasteland effects and dazes and flusters. True name is practically the only card that matters vs fair decks, and I generally mull to cavern + true name in the matchup. Silvergil is a decent cantrip, but the 8 lords are mostly just filler.

@notmi Awesome thanks. I will take your list and try it out with Hullbreacher over Lord of Atlantis.

@notmi looks like someone else did well on the challenge with vials. Seems like you’re doing something right. I have a few questions.

  1. Do you ever get screwed by phyrexian revoker? It seems like us wastelanding and them naming vial will set us back quite a bit

  2. Do you think our PO matchup is good enough to not need Null Rod? I know thieving skydiver is really good against serpent and ballista and lone moxen, but PO always is on the back of my mind. I guess the MD flusterstorms and mindbreak traps help, but Null Rod is such a clean answer

  3. Any thoughts of splashing white for kataki, deafening silence, or Thalia?

  4. Any thoughts on paradigm shift combo with oracle?


In order:

  • Revoker can be a problem, but for the most part you want to just force their most meaningful play and resolve flux post board. My loss in the challenge top 8 was because I stupidly let them resolve a lodestone golem with force in hand because I had a vial, then they followed up with revoker and I was too far behind to win. But in the 6 rounds before that, I played vs shops twice and beat both of them by just making land drops they couldn't wasteland away.

  • The deck was build with beating combo in mind. I think rod is very unnecessary, especially since you're not playing much mana accelerants to play it on turn 1.

  • The manabase would have to drastically change to support white cards. Honestly, even with 9 islands the deck sometimes struggles to cast non merfolk blue spells. Deafening silence is the most relevant of the white cards you could play, and I don't think it's worth the added weakness playing white would add to your manabase

  • My very first list a couple months ago was actually UB with paradigm shift, demonic tutor, vamp tutor, and demonic consultation with 4 oracles, but I found that the end result was just me putting a bunch of medium cards in my deck to turn 5 kill people, which was accomplished by just casting lords anyway.

@notmi thank you for taking the time to answer. I will try your challenge list with the hullbreachers and see how it runs.

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