The New Face of Standard

The New Face of Standard

Taking a look at the post-States Standard format.

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It seems my local meta is being dominated by Golgari-type decks, everyone is looking for 4 Lotleth Trolls (including me), I played a couple of matches against some GB and GBR decks, and they can be brutal if you get the right cards (Lotleth Troll + Slitherhead + Rancor).

I also played against an Azorius deck similar to the Bant Control you posted, but with black instead of green to use Sorin, Lord of Innistrad and take advantage of flashbacks like Lingering Souls. I almost won that one :( (using a very cheap BW Exalted deck).

I'm trying to build a Golgari deck too, with cards like Lotleth Troll, Sliterhead, Corpsejack Menace, Splinterfright and others alike.

Unfortunately, I don't think any of my three decks really stand a chance against any of the local or national meta game, even if I got to update them with the Ravenica cards. All three of them were pretty much gutted by the swapping out of Scars and M12, so I'm kind of stuck.

Honestly? I don't follow the metagame. Never have. I just build whatever kind of deck I feel like, though often on Cockatrice more than using actual copies since I can't just spend money on cards at the drop of a hat.

Currently ruling the roost in my Cockatrice decks is a Bant deck similar to Duels 2013's Talrand deck, featuring heavy doses of green for things like Parallel Lives and splashing white for Trostani, Vitu-Ghazi Guildmage and a couple of other RTR Selesnya additions. Wouldn't be legal in Standard due to Primeval Titan and old lands like Savannah.

One thing I've found interesting was the more direct response that some of the aggro decks are taking against the popular control. I've seen Curse of Echoes and Angel of Glory's Rise being added to sideboards among the U/W human aggro decks.

Slycne:
One thing I've found interesting was the more direct response that some of the aggro decks are taking against the popular control. I've seen Curse of Echoes and Angel of Glory's Rise being added to sideboards among the U/W human aggro decks.

I don't know about the Curse (which is fun in its own right) but Glory's Rise has a lovely little infinite combo with Fiend Hunter and anything that lets you sack a creature with an added benefit, usually Falkenrath Aristocrat. Additional supports for this combo: Huntmaster of the Fells for infinite Wolf tokens and life (though opening a vulnerability to a pair of Rakdos Charms), Healer of the Pride for infinite life without needing four colors, and Zealous Conscripts for dirty infinite thievery (and more counters for your Aristocrat/s).

StarCityGames posted an article about this little "infinite everything" combo and an intriguing four-color Reanimator deck to play it in. I'm considering trying something like this in my Kaalia of the Vast Commander deck... though I can't use Huntmaster with her as my general.

2xDouble:
I don't know about the Curse (which is fun in its own right)

From what I understand it's included as a mostly specific response to Entreat the Angels. Forcing the control decks to either not miracle it or stabilize the game by casting it.

I do okay with my Azorius Tempo deck. It's built similar to the Azorius Aggro, but with more blue for Dungeon Geists, detention spheres, o-rings, arrests, and fiend hunters. I also use Cackling Counterpart as a way to give any creature I have in play Flash for another copy. Sphinx's Revelation is big for card draw. I might take out some of the geists for Tamiyo, because she can do either the same thing, or something better. My deck has a tendency to have to double lock a creature to allow me to deal damage, but Tamiyo won't help with that.

Right now I'm using Azorius spirits aggro/control and it seems to work decent. I use Midnight Haunting and Lingering Souls for the main token production. To buff my tokens I have Drogskol Captain, Favorable Winds and Intangible Virtue. For tech stuff, I run 3 Detention Sphere and 2 Oblivion Ring, a couple sleep, and 4 Cyclonic Rift. I also use 3 Snapcaster Mages to get Haunting's, sleep, or rifts back. There's also a splash of black in there with Drowned Catacomb for the Souls' flashback and a single Vault of the Archangel. Finally, I use 2 Angel of Serenity just because they're really good.

Oh, and I don't have sweepers main boarded at the moment (other than an overloaded rift of course), but there's 3 Terminus in the sideboard, and I may main deck a Supreme Verdict or 2.

EDIT: Derp, I could just link the deck instead of going on about it.
http://essentialmagic.com/Decks/View.asp?ID=948752 <-the decklist

EDIT 2: Oh yeah, this is the 2nd incarnation of this deck. I took the first to an FNM and went 1-4, but all my losses were close games going 1-2, so it wasn't bad at all. I'll be taking this version to this week's tournament and seeing how it does. If it fails, I'm probably gonna be doing Rakdos Aggro, or maybe check out that Selesnya Midrange deck.

I decided on building a GW Selesnya deck which takes advantage of cloudshift and Restoration angel to flicker and populate Armada Wurms and Thragtusks (Thragtuski?). It's a bunch of fun, but I don't think it's strong enough to compete with.

Captchya: Win hands down..... I hope so, but I doubt it.

My local is a tie between Azorius Control and B/G/R zombies. One guy has a killer G/W Humans deck that uses almost nothing from RtR, and if he rolls out a Champion of the Parish with a Champion of Lambholt, the deck gets silly fast. Our lone female representative has a R/B Vampires with heavy amounts of removal. People forget Stormkirk Noble is a card, and can get very dangerous if not dealt with. One guy runs the infinite mana combo with Deadeye Navigator, Fervor, and Axebane Guardian, along with 2 or more walls. It doesn't work often, but it's amazing when it does.

Braedan:
I decided on building a GW Selesnya deck which takes advantage of cloudshift and Restoration angel to flicker and populate Armada Wurms and Thragtusks (Thragtuski?). It's a bunch of fun, but I don't think it's strong enough to compete with.

Captchya: Win hands down..... I hope so, but I doubt it.

I just put together my own take on a Selesnya deck last night, though I'm using Populate instead of flicker for token production. It's going to be a bit slower going than my BW tokens deck, I expect, but it should be fun to play, even if it's not super competitive.

You may be right about the competitiveness of a token/flicker deck, but I can say with confidence that there are few things quite as fun as repeatedly flickering Thragtusk!

I'm running a more aggro version of the Selesnya deck because I wasn't able to get the Thragtusks in my area (because they're in 99% of all standard decks and are $20 rares). Strangleroot Geists, maindeck Thalia, and a pair of sublime archangels are in their place (as well as Restoration Angel because really, what the hell are you blinking besides Thragtusk?).

Deck is soft to Olivia in Jund decks and to getting 3 terminuses miracled on you in the same game. Apart from that it's pretty solid, especially postboard (though I don't have my RIPs yet.)

Been a while since I've been to an official tournament, though I still go to in-home tournaments over at a friend's house. Most of our decks are using cards that have been cycled out (one guy still has a beast of an Eldrazi deck, for instance) so really I can't discuss current "legal" builds.

But I do have a question about an argument that I got into recently.

Suppose the controller of a Serra Ascendant has 29 life and attacks with it. The defending player blocks it with a 2/2...what happens to the Ascendant? The 1 damage of Lifelink gives its controller 30, at which point the Ascendant's ability kicks in giving it +5/+5 and Flying...but at the same time, it was already dealt lethal damage when it was still a 1/1. So does it die? Or does it instantly become a 6/6 Flyer with 2 damage against it for the turn? I say that it should be dead, but a buddy of mine says that it gets to live. His argument is that the ability kicks in the moment he gets 30 life, my argument is that even so, since the combat damage happened at the same time, he gets that life as the Ascendant is dead and on its way to the graveyard.

RJ 17:
Suppose the controller of a Serra Ascendant has 29 life and attacks with it. The defending player blocks it with a 2/2...what happens to the Ascendant? The 1 damage of Lifelink gives its controller 30, at which point the Ascendant's ability kicks in giving it +5/+5 and Flying...but at the same time, it was already dealt lethal damage when it was still a 1/1. So does it die? Or does it instantly become a 6/6 Flyer with 2 damage against it for the turn? I say that it should be dead, but a buddy of mine says that it gets to live. His argument is that the ability kicks in the moment he gets 30 life, my argument is that even so, since the combat damage happened at the same time, he gets that life as the Ascendant is dead and on its way to the graveyard.

I beleive state-based actions kill Serra Ascendant before it's ability goes on the stack. Although let me double check the rulings for lifelink, damage, static and triggered abilities.

704.1. State-based actions are game actions that happen automatically whenever certain conditions (listed below) are met. State-based actions don't use the stack.

704.5g If a creature has toughness greater than 0, and the total damage marked on it is greater than or equal to its toughness, that creature has been dealt lethal damage and is destroyed. Regeneration can replace this event.

Edit

Nope, I was wrong. So what happens is that each creature hits each other for 2 and 1 respectively. All damage is done simultaneously and Lifelink happens as a static ability so you gain 1 raising you to 30. This then engages Serra Ascendants static ability, but this all happens before state-based actions scoop creatures off to the graveyard. So the 2/2 lives with one damage still assigned to it and Serra Ascendant is a 6/6 with 2 damage assigned to it.

Basically the hinge is that damage doesn't actually "kill" the creature, a state-based action check looks for any creatures with more damage than their toughness and Serra Ascendant's ability isn't a triggered ability based on receiving priority and adding it to the stack.

deth2munkies:
I'm running a more aggro version of the Selesnya deck because I wasn't able to get the Thragtusks in my area (because they're in 99% of all standard decks and are $20 rares). Strangleroot Geists, maindeck Thalia, and a pair of sublime archangels are in their place (as well as Restoration Angel because really, what the hell are you blinking besides Thragtusk?).

Deck is soft to Olivia in Jund decks and to getting 3 terminuses miracled on you in the same game. Apart from that it's pretty solid, especially postboard (though I don't have my RIPs yet.)

Counter Olivia with either arrest or pithing needle. If you have a way to prevent an acidic slime from entering play, even better.

Currently have a Bant mill/defender/enchantment thing going on. It works pretty well and took a lot of people by surprise. The lockdown is just plain silly on it.

vxicepickxv:

deth2munkies:
I'm running a more aggro version of the Selesnya deck because I wasn't able to get the Thragtusks in my area (because they're in 99% of all standard decks and are $20 rares). Strangleroot Geists, maindeck Thalia, and a pair of sublime archangels are in their place (as well as Restoration Angel because really, what the hell are you blinking besides Thragtusk?).

Deck is soft to Olivia in Jund decks and to getting 3 terminuses miracled on you in the same game. Apart from that it's pretty solid, especially postboard (though I don't have my RIPs yet.)

Counter Olivia with either arrest or pithing needle. If you have a way to prevent an acidic slime from entering play, even better.

Oh I'm well aware that they exist, but I'm running Oblivion Ring over Arrest to deal with Planeswalkers, I've just been testing whether or not to side it in for Jund as it's really bad against pretty much everything else in their deck.

Slycne:
Nope, I was wrong. So what happens is that each creature hits each other for 2 and 1 respectively. All damage is done simultaneously and Lifelink happens as a static ability so you gain 1 raising you to 30. This then engages Serra Ascendants static ability, but this all happens before state-based actions scoop creatures off to the graveyard. So the 2/2 lives with one damage still assigned to it and Serra Ascendant is a 6/6 with 2 damage assigned to it.

Basically the hinge is that damage doesn't actually "kill" the creature, a state-based action check looks for any creatures with more damage than their toughness and Serra Ascendant's ability isn't a triggered ability based on receiving priority and adding it to the stack.

Awwww nuts. Well at least you managed to give a more technical and precise explination than my buddy could. Thanks for taking the time to answer my question. :D

I'm currently running a G/U self mill deck, though I have yet to test it out in completed form.

There is a standard casual tourney being held today, but regrettably I won't be able to participate. Hopefully I will see how it does within a week or so.

Encaen:

Braedan:
I decided on building a GW Selesnya deck which takes advantage of cloudshift and Restoration angel to flicker and populate Armada Wurms and Thragtusks (Thragtuski?). It's a bunch of fun, but I don't think it's strong enough to compete with.

Captchya: Win hands down..... I hope so, but I doubt it.

I just put together my own take on a Selesnya deck last night, though I'm using Populate instead of flicker for token production. It's going to be a bit slower going than my BW tokens deck, I expect, but it should be fun to play, even if it's not super competitive.

You may be right about the competitiveness of a token/flicker deck, but I can say with confidence that there are few things quite as fun as repeatedly flickering Thragtusk!

Heh, I should have said that I'm using both. Two Trostani, Selesnya's Voice plus an odd assortment of things like Rootborn Defenses and Growing Ranks let me pump a tonne of bonerwurms.

Try adding some Strangleroot Geists. Speeds the deck up quite a bit and gives two blocks if things get really rough.

Flickering Thragtusk is fun, but Flickering Thragtusk with Trostani out and getting 13 health is lots of fun too :D

I'm loving the Raka control decks that have been popping up courtesy of plentiful multicolored mana and hybrid cards. Tempo, burn and Giest of Saint Traft. What more could you want?

Well, aside from the sweet sweet sound of Dega lifegain/burn courtesy of gatecrash. The time is right for tricolor-offcolor decks to take the stage!

Farthing:
I'm loving the Raka control decks that have been popping up courtesy of plentiful multicolored mana and hybrid cards. Tempo, burn and Giest of Saint Traft. What more could you want?

Well, aside from the sweet sweet sound of Dega lifegain/burn courtesy of gatecrash. The time is right for tricolor-offcolor decks to take the stage!

For some control and stompy, perhaps.
It's probably going to be a repeat performance not of original Ravnica Block, but Alara Block. The Guild archetypes largely feel more homogenous compared to before, granted, this is a tad premature.

Jund Stompy vs Bant, only this time with Thragtusk instead of Bloodbraid Elf generating all that free tempo.

The only card I think is a little too good is Thragtusk, but I'm thankful it wasn't another "Pre-Ordained Chase Mythic" like Jace the Mind Sculptor.

B/G Zombies.
http://magic.tcgplayer.com/db/deck.asp?deck_id=1063145
Yes, I should be playing B/R for the reach the deck has. However, Rancor is a powerhouse and Dreg Mangler leads to turn 4 kills. Unfortunately, my meta loves G/W. So I have to battle through a lot of Thragtusks. I've not been very good so far, but that turns around today.

 

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