I really like Delver. I like that it is aggressive, plays blue cards, Pyroblast, Null Rod and Wasteland.
I considered playing it at Champs but decided to go with Survival instead because I was wary of playing a fair deck in a large tournament (and Survival is the new hotness, etc) but I had a decent amount of success (in the small sample size that I was able to play) with both URg and URw online. I was especially liking URg:
I went 33-7 with a few different versions of URg Delver in August and September of this past year. Some leagues, a lot of tournament practice matches. I especially beat up on DPS and Outcome but I didn't play Shops much and didn't trust that matchup because of that.
@wfain very interesting list. I like it.
One thing: you went with Deathrite + Bayou over Hierarch despite being solidly in Bant. This is very possibly correct as I hate playing the mirror when my opponent has Deathrites and I do not. The flip side of that is that I also hate it when my own Deathrites don’t tap for mana, especially in the face of Graveyard hate that is already hampering my deck post-board.
Do you think that Deathrite is just better in Bant full stop or is there something about the FoW approach (as opposed to Thalia) that leads you to choose it over Hierarch?
Edit: or is Leovold that good? I realized he was in here just after I posted.
I finished 7-3 for 38th place at Champs. I lost vs shops in the last round when I punted several times including missing the win on board in game one. My brain was completely gone after a long day but it was a good run for me. I loved my deck and I’d change only -1 Kataki, +1 Trygon Predator in the board. I’ll write up a bit more later.
I have a theoretical BUGR list. It’s not too far off @wfain‘s from a few posts above. The main deck seems solid and there are a lot of great sideboard options but I feel like I have too many good cards here. How would I side vs PO? How do I get my blue count high enough vs Shops in games two and three?
4 Basking Rootwalla
3 Deathrite Shaman
1 Elvish Spirit Guide
2 Leovold, Emissary of Trest
1 Squee, Goblin Nabob
1 Trygon Predator
4 Hollow One
1 Black Lotus
1 Mox Emerald
1 Mox Jet
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Ancestral Recall
3 Mental Misstep
4 Survival of the Fittest
1 Time Walk
4 Force of Will
1 Treasure Cruise
4 Bazaar of Baghdad
4 Misty Rainforest
2 Tropical Island
3 Windswept Heath
1 Tormod's Crypt
1 Grafdigger's Cage
2 Ancient Grudge
2 Assassin's Trophy
1 Hurkyl's Recall
2 Null Rod
4 Leyline of the Void
I mean, Leovold is great against other blue decks when it lands and doesn't eat a Pyroblast.
One thing I wonder about this BUG version and PO is that Misstep is, I think, only ok against them. Not nearly as good as it is against Xerox. Sometimes the cantrip, Top or Mana Vault that you hit is good enough to slow them down but these cards aren't winning the game for them.
I do like that BUG plays Treasure Cruise and Brainstorm. I've actually replaced Hooting Mandrils in my GWUR version with Cruise as well.
I still want to find a place for DT. Maybe because I own a Beta Tutor though I realize that's a bad reason to play a card. Too much Old School recently, maybe.
I’ve played only one match with the BUG version (though I did win it) but here are my theory-crafting thoughts on that version vs. GWUR:
- It feels like BUG should be a bit faster in practice as you don’t need to choose whether to spend mana on disruption vs. attacking.
- Deathrite gives added game in various matchups and is generally a very strong card.
- Misstep and FoW are one for one answers vs. Thalia’s many for one.
- Pyroblast, Ancient Grudge and Ingot Chewer really are strong.
- The guaranteed mana of Birds/Hierarch is a really big deal for this deck.
- BUG has had fewer revisions and almost no personal testing by me. It feels like it must be further from an “optimal” build at this point.
@kaluma how do your matchups vs. PO and Shops go? How do you play them and how do you sideboard?
@kaluma, this is an extremely greedy list (and I absolutely mean that as a compliment):
Did you find the one null rod sufficient?
I find when I keep a hand with Survival and mana I tend to do pretty well and when I keep a Bazaar hand I don't. I may get a few creatures in play but if they are handled I end up with card disadvantage and pitching cards that I want to keep. Maybe I just need to add a second or third Squee to fight this.
@wfain this list seems really solid. I played something similar in a league and went 2-3 but played the mirror three times and went 1-2 vs it. The biggest differences are I had three Birds vs the Hierarchy/Deathrite split and I had two Ancient Grudge main.
Is Hierarch better than two Birds here? Feels like you want both red and black occasionally.
I cut Mandrils and don’t know how I feel about it. How do you like that card?
I’m trying to figure out if I want to play Survival at champs and I really don’t know so far. One of the issues I’m having is that I haven’t gotten the chance to test the shops matchup and my guess is that Survival is not favored. At least in game 1.