Best posts made by wfain
posted in Survival read more

That's what I've been calling this deck anyway. After quite a bit of work I think I've finally come down to a list I'm pretty satisfied with. Might be a couple off still, but I'm pretty happy so far.


The deck works by using Bazaar of Baghdad or Survival of the Fittest to generate a bunch of power spread across a bunch of bodies (sometimes they all have haste and/or flying too!)

The engine and drivers of the deck takes up 20 cards:
4 Bazaar
4 SotF
4 Vengevine
4 Hollow One
4 Basking Rootwalla

Add the obligitory 14/15 lands and 5 moxen and Black Lotus:
2 Bayou
1 Savannah
1 Trop
1 Taiga
1 Forest
1 Dryad Arbor
1 Gaea's Cradle
6 green fetches of your choice (mixing is good to dodge Spyglass)
5 Moxen
1 Black Lotus

We've got 20ish cards left to play with. I've fiddled with having more ways to interact (like main deck Abrupt Decay), more engine pieces (Faithless Looting, Wheel of Fortune, Frantic Search, Breakthrough), tutors, and other raw card draws. The best cards in Vintage obviously make the cut (Ancestral Recall and Time Walk). I've also chosen to go with a couple annoying effects via Thorn and Chalice. Neither of them really impact this deck while they are more than capable of stealing wins from other players. I've decided to err on the side of lots of creatures (because Vengevine and Survival demand it):
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Time Walk
1 Chalice of the Void
1 Thorn of Amethyst
4 Mana Dorks (I have 2 DRS, 1 BoP, 1 Noble)
1 Elvish Spirit Guide (this is better than Lotus Petal, I'll explain why later)
1 Anger
1 Wonder
1 Tasigur
1 Squee
1 Manglehorn
2 Thalia
2 Dark Confidant
2 Tarmogoyf

Some questions you may be asking-

Why no Memnite/Walking Ballista?
-tried both, the free nature isn't relevant, basically ever.

Do you really want Wonder/Anger?
-Wonder is how you beat Mentor/Pyromancer tokens, and Anger is how you beat Oath (if they don't draw Orchard of course) and is a great way to still have haste guys when your opponent is relying on Grafdigger's Cage.

Why Tarmogoyf?
-He is a big guy that you don't have to set up for, just play him and he can swing hard. He is also pretty good at holding off Shops until you can set something up (like Wonder or Energy Flux).

How good is Squee?
-I've only had him for a handful of games but he has shown to be useful so far. He allows you to be more aggressive with Bazaar activation.

Why is Elvish Spirit Guide better than another mana dork or Lotus Petal?
-Not least because it is an uncounterable way to generate extra mana (that happens to work through Chalice/Trinisphere too) but also because it allows you to generate an additional mana on Survival turns. If you find yourself short a G when trying to create some Vengevines you can grab ESG and use it to give you +1 G to activate Survival that one extra time (you need to have a superfluous creature in hand for this to work)

How much mana do you need to Survival?
-Depends on the situation. If you already have SotF in play and Vengevine(s) in the graveyard you need 1 creature in hand. If that creature is Basking Rootwalla you need GGX or GXXX (discard BR for VV, VV for Hollow One, tap off color to cast Hollow One, or discard BR for Hollow One and tap XXX to cast Hollow One {you could also get Bob or Thalia assuming you have the right Mox among those extra mana}). If the creature is not BR- you'll need GGX (dude for BR, BR for HO, tap 1 for HO) or GGG, or GG and an additional creature in hand (discard creature 1 for ESG, discard creature 2 for BR, use ESG to add G to discard BR for HO, cast HO).

Sideboard (still not perfect, but getting closer)
2 Stony Silence (Shops and Outcome)
1 Faerie Macabre (Dredge)
1 Wispmare (Leyline of the Void/Moat/Oath)
2 Energy Flux (Shops)
1 Gilded Drake (Oath/Tinker)
3 Ravenous Trap (Dredge)
1 Ingot Chewer (Shops/Outcome)
1 Manglehorn (Shops/Outcome)
2 Abrupt Decay (Shops/Outcome/Oath/Fair Blue decks/Cage/Rest in Peace/etc)
1 Kambal (Outcome/Fair Blue)

Comments are always welcome!
Thanks to @hierarchnoble @kaluma and @bleedth3sky for also working on the deck and offering their suggestions!

posted in Survival read more

The Hornet Queens have again chosen to have Survival Salad in their pile of decks for team VSL tonight!

posted in Vintage News read more

Just gave a listen, thanks for spotlighting our Survival deck! Some things I’ll point out to answer some of the questions you guys had: the mana dork split is to help dodge revokers (with the birds being a budget function at first because I didn’t want to spend $100 on nobles if the deck was bad), Tarmogoyf is a good man to have against Shops or lightning bolt decks, especially when they are planning to rely on cage/priest to hold you in check. The Kambal are all @kaluma . I don’t think they’re very good personally and I play Bob in that spot normally to help recoup some resources that you bleed to Bazaar. I prefer mixing 1 goyf and 1 delve guy because goyf is still good against Leyline and crypt, but the delve guy is better against spheres.

You guys hit the nail on the head with ESG though. Don’t play less than 2. For any reason. If you do you’re wrong. They do so much. I posted a 5-0 earlier this week, or maybe it was late last week with the newer version we’ve been using which has Spell Queller as a 2 of.

Today I ran through a league and a half with a BUG version which picks up FoW by adding Prized Amalgam and Mental Misstep (with some other blue creatures to up the count) and Gravecrawler to up the synergy factor. It’s just a preliminary version that will require some tuning to find the right mixes, but it’s 7-1 in league matches thus far.

posted in Vintage Community read more

@chubbyrain I find it hard to believe, power level wise, that Outcome is worse than Gush. Gush is more flexible and doesn’t require quite the deck building constraint (although I could argue almost all the cards Outcome requires are cards you’re playing anyways) but you could still beat 2 Gush, it’s basically impossible to beat 2 Outcome (resolved of course, if you always have FOW and they don’t you’re winning in either case).
Basically- Outcome feels like Gush with Fastbond stapled to it (and then some)

posted in Vintage Community read more

In my experience as a competitive player, an athlete, and a coach- the best mindset I’ve found is to be process oriented. Consider yourself successful if you’ve done everything you wanted to prepare both skill wise and physically (SLEEP!), executed whatever your plan is to the best of your ability, and minimized controlable mistakes. If you do those things the victories come. But you’ll have more fun too, because winning/losing becomes secondary.

posted in Decks read more

4-1 today in league. Rebuilt the sideboard to fight only Shops, Outcome, and Dredge. Fair blue decks are basically easy wins (and you can still bring in Leo, Thalia, and Abrupt Decay to help).


Is this deck worth it's own thread and maybe a primer at this point? Is that something people would be interested in? If so I can try to record my replays after I finish a league so people could see it in action (I play on a tablet so the best I can do is record with my phone after the fact).

posted in Survival read more

@serracollector it’s pretty decent so far! I’m sitting on 4-0 in league with the 2 Thalia list from a couple posts up. Tasigur/Tarmogoyf make the Shops matchup like 60/40 in my favor where before it was like 40/60 or something. Those dudes just handle all but the most busted Ravager/Overseer draws.
Tasigur also makes it a little easier to trigger VV through Trinisphere (which was nearly impossible before).

EDIT: went 5-0. Pretty decent hits on my prize chests too!

posted in Survival read more

@bleedth3sky nice! I added a comment on scg directing people to our thread.

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

@smmenen I listened to some of it, but really just skipped to hear you talk about my Survival deck. 😝

posted in Vintage Community read more

@moorebrother1 I think there is a simpler explanation that people haven’t come to yet- it’s the dichotomy between old players and new players. For old players Vintage is their last refuge of how things used to be (before 93/94 came around anyways). Prison strategies, counterspells, combo decks. Things you couldn’t do in other formats, the ones that had “devolved” into creature battles and planeswalker team-ups. Now even vintage is under that attack. Shops is closer to modern Robots than the old prison decks. Survival is basically an aggro deck as well. Even the counterspells decks win with planeswalker team-ups these days. It feels more and more like modern, now with power to these old players. (Plus they’ve been playing forever and the format doesn’t change that much aside from restrictions, so of course they feel bored).

New players, who largely get in via MtGO, probably feel the opposite. Here is a format that doesn’t often incentivize the skills that make them good at other formats. Combat math is almost irrelevant to most decks. Using mana efficiently isn’t as important as maximizing power/flexibility (depending on your deck choice). Landing a planeswalker on an empty board is no guarantee of victory. In fact, depending on your situation, you may be better off holding it in your hand to represent something else!

I just don’t think our favorite format is capable of being anything other than niche because it doesn’t reach very many players where they are. I don’t think it has to do with the meta game, though that is probably what name people put on their dissatisfaction, so much as it does with the inherent nature of this format.

posted in Decks read more

@hierarchnoble that’s me! I’ve really enjoy playing it. Have since changed Wheel of Fortune to Sylvan Library.

posted in Survival read more

I’m going to test Chalice and Thorn by shaving a mana dork and a Bob.

posted in Combo read more

Manglehorn has proven to be very good vs PO in my Survival deck.

posted in Survival read more

@kaluma @hierarchnoble

As kaluma posted above, we were talking on mtgo chat (who does that?) and Spell Queller came up as an interesting idea if we were looking at cutting colors. Kaluma had already been playing without Anger and told me that Bob had been cut as well, so I suggested maybe just cut black entirely. We were concerned about missing the disruption, but Spell Queller seems like a reasonable fit. My build differs slightly from the one above so I'll post it so we can talk about all the choices and hash something out.


posted in Survival read more

@serracollector to kill Hollow One. That is a very common plan they’ll use in sideboard games.

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

My point wasn’t that LSV invented Cabal Pit.

Honestly, who cares?

I’ve come up with lots of cool decks and tech that end up being widely used but nobody knows who I am. It doesn’t matter in the slightest, either.

The point is that, right now on MTGO the Dredgers I’ve seen have adopted the above stated package (with Darkblast too) following its use in team VSL. That fact, combined with the relatively low percentage of Oath at the moment leads me to the title of this thread- PSA: Containment Priest isnt good. Don’t play it expecting it to matter (unless all you need is one turn to establish Time Vault or Tendrils or whatever else to win on the spot). If you’re trying to play fair, you probably want something else.

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

@brianpk80 lol.

@vaughnbros I’d like to issue an apology to you. I accused you of doing the same thing I was doing (failing to understand your point, and not being honest about really trying). I’m sorry. You deserve better. Your perspective in this matter is valuable and legitimate, and I didn’t treat you as such. I hope you’ll accept my apology.

posted in Survival read more

@drstreetmention that guy seems like a 1 of at best to me. Interesting for sure, but not a candidate for multiple slots.

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

@babau Sai or either 5cmc Tezz seems better too. Or Karn PW.