@ebgmtg karn has been slowly less impressive for me. I thought he would be a good plan versus jeskai but I have found him to be a liability versus dack. I would be looking to move away from him in the future. @ChubbyRain 's opinion may differ?
If Dack is your problem, I know what your issue is. Karn isn't there to tick down--he's there to just keep ticking up for a few turns. Paradoxical--even with the bonus card usually being a Mox--can overwhelm Jeskai if you get to just tick up Karn a bunch, then -1 and get an extra Will/Outcome to just have more stuff than they have answers. It was one of those very paradoxical "this isn't a threat, it's a howling mine" realizations.
In the BUG Variants running 4 Dr. Shaman and Leovold, and ESG (Albeit not played most games for this purpose), could a Singleton Priest of Titania be a thing? Anything past her and another elf leads to enough consistent Mana (looking at you Orcish Lumberjack) to go off every turn right?
Priest of Titania is win more. 3 mana+Survival is realistically death already, and while it would be great to cast Hollow One, it's often better to just cycle it away and try to hit gas or a more castable card.
I'll offer an explanation: Often, it's a "I just started going off, and I guess at some point I'll let you know that you're dead. If you know you're dead, I guess you'd concede?" It's fun to just combo off, especially with outcomes.
It's very much not being rude, or showboating, or whatever. They came to have their fun, and by god, they intend to have it.
Now, in paper, I suppose I'd just scoop myself a lot faster--they are taking up precious time on the clock, and no judge can say they're not within their rights to keep taking game actions which are advancing the game state--but on MTGO? Fine, go nuts. If I get bored, I'll concede.
Because (1) it's a fantastic run hot deck (Cosmo's deck from champs, for example, doesn't have Preordain. It's going to fold on itself some medium percentage of the time, though I'm sure it's fantastic when it does not), and (2) it doesn't have any real champion online who is willing to grind the deck and get the 3 to 4 5-0 records it takes to get noticed. (and a big #3--it relies on your opponent not knowing what you're doing a little bit).
@drstreetmention edited the "original" post -- although going through the decklists right now, Paul Callis who played "Junk Survival" to a 6-2 record played the same 60 as the winning Asia Vintage Champs-- so it really was Bant.
Cleaning up the data and moving people to the right category:
Bant Survival = 65% win rate (8 players)
RGwu Survival = 55% win rate (6 players with 1 or more Ancient Grudge and Chewer)
Other Survival = 75% win rate (1 player: FOW Leovold / Misstep)
Thanks for puttting this together. Not surprising to me in the least--the RGwu versions are far more matchup dependent, and that's not as good in a huge tournament like Champs. Bant was simply ultra stable and did well. FoW Survival was me, and I finished 8-2 (with 1 loss to, of all things, Blood Moons), good for the casual 75%. That's not really any sample size.
What I see from this is that--back of the napkin--is that you've got enough sample size that you're about 80% certain that bant was better against the champs field than RGwu, and 0 statistical certainty about anything about FoW Survival.
That said--every single version is notably north of 50%, so I'm quite certain that we had the best deck in the room, with a very decent conversion rate to the top 8.
@neo_altoid @CountDaBubba it is perfectly reasonable to play Dig and Cruise and up your blue count for FoW. This is what ecobaronen decided was the correct line. Personally my team liked dig, will, snap a small amount more.
Agreed on that. We felt Snapcaster was basically required, and it was "Pick 2 of Will, Cruise, and Dig"--and Will/Dig was what we (well, only Ryan, really, as BPK ended up on Oath,and I ended up on Survival)
@countdabubba Good question! It is my belief that you can only support 2 "delve spells" in PO. So for this you have to choose between Dig/Cruise/Will and Snapcaster. Dig is the best one as you are a combo deck. Cruise IMO is more underwhelming then Will and Will plays a bit better with the one snapcaster mage. It is perfectly acceptable to run 1 dig 1 cruise or 1 dig 1 will 1 snap. Any other configuration doesn't make sense.
Poor Squee, he's already got that face and you put him alone ;(
That's because @wfain is a monster.
Just played a league with the list from kaluma's stream and I really liked it. Phantasmal and containment priest made me run more confidence against tinker (while still losing, but variance hits every deck), and I guess it would be nice against oath and it's blue to force.
PI has consistently impressed. It answers a lot of the problems of the deck without being pure trash outside of problem situations. 1U 4/3 haste is for real.
Btw, I really liked your idea of hurkyl's in the side. Hurkyl end step to survival with nothing holding you back, and even have another turn until your opponent be able to attack again. I mean, energy flux is kinda lights out for shops when you play it, but it's 3 mana against a deck with wasteland, sphere, revoker... And sometimes hurkyl would save you when flux wouldn't. I'll definitely try it for my next league on flux's spot!
I like the idea of Hurkyl's (and we certainly do enter a Hurkyls->you're dead kind of state). Worth trying (I think it's wrong), but worth trying, as Hurkyl's x2+Trygon+removal gives pretty good game.
I also hate only 12 mana producing lands. It's possible that it's right, and 4 mox is correct, but I hate only 12 lands.
Re: Cruise--I've found that it's one of the worst cards early and one of the best cards late. Deep Analysis isn't insanity to play, and worth trying. I think Brainstorm is pretty overrated, tbh, as you want to brainstorm with a full hand, and Survival does not have a full hand all the time. I'd cut Brainstorm before I cut Cruise.
But even as recent as 2015 when both Mental Misstep and Flusterstorm were both legal it was still being used in multiple top 32 decks of the Vintage NA EW. It seems to have dropped completely off the map right after. All the reasons stated above make sense, but how come it was still being used so recently (in vintage time)?
People are slow to adapt, and in a format where Vintage where the other 59 can carry you so hard, it sometimes doesn't matter. I think Misdirection might even still have a place in Oath of Druids if we go back to Abrupt Decay being the tool du jour to fight Oath, but short off that, the combo decks are too critical mass-y and the control decks too good at casting Misstep, Flusterstorm and Reb for Misdirection to matter too much.
Flusterstorm is basically the entire reason. Flusterstorm isn't free, but it's so much better as both a defensive and offensive tool when you have the mana that Misdirection is rendered largely unneeded. Even back on the day, the only deck that really played Misdirection was Oath, since you didn't have a huge startup cost in cards, and resolving Oath did actually end the game.
How are you jamming in more blue cards? All of the black cards main are already blue as well!
For real though, I thought about Spell Queller, and my issue with the card is that it sucks against Jeskai. You end up wanting to Spell Queller cards like Preordain rather than spells that matter, since you get so thoroughly ranched by removal if you ever tuck something like a Jace or Dack Fayden under the card. Leovold is blue, and does the deed of hosing PO roughly as well as Spell Queller (we trade beating Tinker for being better against the cantrips).
My overall experience has been that the paper meta has a great amount of diversity, at least in the first 2/3 of tournament rounds. At champs this year I played against 5 different decks (6 rounds, my r1 opponent was a no-show).
If you're only looking at MTGO challenges and paper top 8s, one could get the impression that the paper meta is less diverse than it is.
The paper meta has a lot of bad players playing bad decks at the bottom tables. Metagame diversity is high if I'm willing to count the no hoper who decided to play some unplayable "QUAD LASER FACT OR FICTION!" pile. (Of course, they're probably having a blast casting these cards--if you realized you're not going to win, you really ought to do what you want and have a good time playing!)
The X-0/X-1 bracket at champs, for X>5, is basically the MTGO metagame, and the vast majority (not all, but a pretty heavy majority) of bad decks have been trimmed away, and even the rouge decks aren't "WHY WOULD YOU EVEN TRY THIS", it's instead something standard with a twist instead.
On a totally unrelated and irrelevant note, do the new Vengevine and Noble Hierach masterpieces push this deck even further into the insurmountable #1 Most Expensive Deck slot by a longshot?
I think you certainly can have a pimp version of this deck which is nearly as bad as anything else. I think the only reason you don't get there is that USea--which we don't play--is so much more expensive than pimp versions of Trop and Bayou.
You'll note that my anti-PO plan is quite light. I'm not bringing in 5 cards, I'm bringing in 2 stony silence (and maybe 2 abrupt decay if they are on vault key)...and that's it. I think you've been traumatized to the point of wanting to smash them into the ground with a bunch of hate (and that's really not the plan).
I'm legit just cutting superfluous combo pieces (-1 Wonder, -1 Squee), for a mild number of stony silence...and calling it a day.
You can't control them to never winning, but you can stay alive long enough to win yourself. the game is "I bet you don't have 2 copies of outcome" Sometimes...they do, and you lose, but all I feel was that force took the matchup from horrific (like...20% in my experience against a prepared opponent with Tinker, Vamp, and a brain) to a 40/60-45/55 matchup, which I'm willing to stomachh going into an event.
Report, while it's still fresh. Props to @kaluma for the deck, I felt damn near unbeatable for most of the day. My Jeskai sideboard of 2x decay+squee was great. my shops sideboard was irrelevant (I won via normal survival things, not anything else), and my dredge hate was dredge hate.
R1 Storm. G1 I break his soul by flusterstorm on Tinker, after leading windswept heath pass.
G2 I assemble drs+leovold+countermagic. he gets clocked and dies after trying and failing with macro.
R2, lose G1 to blind revoker on lotus, win game 2 to assembling the bash bros, then winning a drawn out affair where I had to beat a traxos via phantasmal image, then lose game 3 to revoker on lotus
r3, I smash Jeskai with "here is survival, are you dead?". game 2 was a more buffoony affair where hardcast trygon predator and wonder win the game right through rest in peace.
r4, smashed landstill. felt like I won 3 games, as bazaar and survival donked him. But I did lose g2 having taken some hits while finding abrupt decay for containment priest, and getting fiery confluenced for 6.
r5 smashed Jeskai. g1 played sylvan library. it found me 3 survival. the 3rd stuck and killed my opponent.
g2, it's a more drawn out affair, but I basically win by trygon eating his hate, then pooping out vengevines.
r6 beat dredge. He mulled to 1 g1, and I had double leyline ancestral in game 2.
r7 lost to blood moons. lost g1 to "surprise you're dead" won g2 off forest jet decay blood moon, lost g3 to emerald sapphire recall...find 0 mana sources, null rod dead.
r8 beat shops, lost g1 to trinisphere, had fast trygon predator games 2/3 and he carried me home.
r9 beat grixis control. g1, I have a bug fish hand. DRS, Leovold, misstep bolt on leo, stick survival, ballgame.
g2, I open bazaar, hollow one hollow one against his library. I force his dack fayden on 3 with flusterstorm backup, then rip walk to put him to 0 instantly.
r10, I battle shops, g1 have this awkward moment where I've survival'd, forced a couple things, but now our opponent has revokered survival and has larger monsters. fortunately, I have DRS and burn her out for the win.
g2 she opens on sphere. I bazaar, vv+rootwalla (pitching esg to cast rootwalla) hollow one, and 2x hollow one the next turn and easily win.
My deck was from my last post:
20 core survival
1 phantasmal image
1 sylvan library
1 treasure Cruise
4 Emerald, Jet, Sapphire, Lotus