First and foremost I want to take a moment to thank everyone who read Monday's article, Tilt is Toxic, and everyone who left feedback, heartfelt or otherwise. I guarantee you I read all of it, and it was kind of mind blowing. The fact that we're all so similar yet with such different experiences and from such different walks of life is staggering. Your comments are all awesome, and if you liked or loved the article, I'm glad. I put a lot of myself into it, and I'm glad you could relate, or take something from it, or be entertained for fifteen minutes by it.
That being said, let's get down to some rogue Standard decks and videos!
It's safe to say that I've gone on record and mentioned Eidolon of Blossoms as one of my favorite cards from Journey into Nyx, if not one of my current favorite Standard cards period. I heard some rumblings of a constellation deck going around after the Pro Tour, but I hadn't seen any yet...until now.
Adam actually mentioned this deck in his article on Tuesday as well. Now Magic Online user twop only managed a 3-1 finish with the deck, but that's still pretty good, especially if this is a preliminary list of what we can expect from the BG Constellation deck. Let's take a look at how the deck operated, and then we can take a look at what changes we might want to make.
BG Constellation vs. Monogreen Devotion
BG Constellation vs. Azorius Control
BG Constellation vs. Boros Auras
BG Constellation vs. Red Deck Wins
Oh, BG Constellation. You had me at two Primeval Bounty in the maindeck.
But seriously, this deck looks pretty sweet, and it packs a punch as well. We won another match before we started recording so we had an official record of 4-1 last night, only losing to the Azorius deck. That's pretty good, but I did feel like there were some holes to shore up against control (or more specifically, Sphinx's Revelation / Supreme Verdict control decks; I think we're fine against Monoblack decks).
The first question I had was whether or not Herald of Torment was the best option for the deck. While they're great in and of themselves, I'm not sure they really fit the strategy of the deck. They attack for three early, and they can be bestowed, but this isn't the kind of deck that wants to attack early. In fact the deck is actually fairly grindy and looks to win a long game.
I took a look through all of the enchantments in Standard and I think I might like something like Whip of Erebos or Pharika, God of Affliction somewhere in the deck better. Maybe one and two, respectively. As much as I love the aforementioned Primeval Bounty, perhaps if we went with Pharika, God of Affliction, it could be replaced with Deadbridge Chant. This is a card I was curious about anyway. It's still an enchantment, but it also has the potential to put other enchantment creatures directly into play each turn, triggering constellation. It also adds two pips of devotion for Pharika as well. Even if we don't hit a creature with it, we would still be drawing a second card every turn, which isn't something Primeval Bounty can do. And with Pharika in the deck somewhere, filling up our graveyard to make some vital Snake Tokens is also a beneficial ability.
Doomwake Giant was a little better than I suspected him to be in Constructed. As a 4/6 for five with no evasion, I wasn't expecting the world, but truth be told, a 4/6 is actually not so easy to deal with in combat right now. He also ends up dodging things like Bile Blight, Doom Blade, and Abrupt Decay, which is not irrelevant. While you're rarely able to play two enchantments in the same turn in the early game, the -1/-1 to one side of the board is often pretty good against a lot of strategies all by itself. Getting two Doomwake Giants in play at the same time is most likely game over for any sort of creature-based strategy.
I would be tempted to add white for Banishing Light, but I'm not sure it's needed. The deck already has plenty of removal, and I don't think it's worth messing up the mana for it. I think one of the reasons black and green are two of my favorite colors to combine is because they can deal with everything. We have ways to deal with artifacts, creatures, enchantments, planeswalkers, lands, and each with only a single card. That's a very comfortable feeling when playing with a deck: knowing you have an answers for most card types.-->
We were going to play the new Naya deck this week, with Ajani, Mentor of Heros and Scion of Vitu-Ghazi in it, but I realized it suffers from the one thing I hate about Naya decks: little card advantage and an Overabundance of mana creatures that are terrible top decks. This deck actually has a surprising amount of card advantage. In fact most cards have ways to gain you a card, and often times multiple cards. Primeval Bounty, Doomwake Giant, Eidolon of Blossoms, Courser of Kruphix, Underworld Connections, and Vraska the Unseen all have ways to generate some form of card advantage.
The Lifebane Zombies out of the sideboard are so huge right now when every deck is either green or white or has green or white hybrid creatures somewhere inside it. One card I was not overly fond of out of the board, however was the lone Boon Satyr. It's pretty good against control decks as a surprise attacked after a wrath, but have just one is pretty odd. I could see cutting the third Doomwake Giant for it, or even playing one in the maindeck over one Herald of Torment, but that might require a bit of testing. We also felt like these should be a couple Duress in the sideboard for the control matchup, and maybe even an Erebos, God of the Dead. The maindeck is actually quite good against aggro decks, so maybe we need to gear our sideboard more toward defeating the Sphinx's Revelation decks.
Well, that's about all I have for this week. We'll return to our regularly scheduled Modern Monday next week so be sure to return for that. Thanks for reading and I'll see you then.
Frank Lepore@FrankLepore on TwitterFrankLepore on TwitchTV