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Elfball/aggro



 
Reply to topic    Magic-League.com Forum Index -> Legacy (T1.5) Decks
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thnkr



Joined: 16 Sep 2009
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2009 7:52 pm    Post subject: Elfball/aggro Reply with quote

I've just completed an elf deck that works as your typical legacy elfball but can also work as aggro if the Glimpse of Nature is countered. The decklist is as follows:

Creatures:
4 Birchlore Rangers
4 Elvish Visionary
4 Fyndhorn Elves
4 Heritage Druid
4 Llanowar Elves
4 Nettle Sentinel
4 Quirion Ranger
4 Wirewood Symbiote

Spells:
4 Glimpse of Nature
4 Summoner's Pact
4 Land Grant
4 Grapeshot

Enchantments:
4 Exploration

Lands:
8 Forest

I'm still working on the sideboard. I suppose it's really up to how your meta runs on what the sideboard should be. The deck runs pretty consistent turn 2 or 3 kills. Again, if the Glimpse is countered then you should still be able to drop your hand full of elves by turn 3 and swing with weenies.

I have had responses about there being 4 Grapeshots in there, but they serve multiple purposes, and there are good reasons for there being 4. First, you don't need to play so many spells in order to do a quick kill. You can play two in one turn after you've played 9 spells and win. You can also drop your hand turn 2, use your extra mana for playing a Grapeshot for 5 or 6 and start swinging for 6-8 damage per turn after that. Your opponent is on a clock to deal with all of them, which is not something that most decks are ready to do (especially game 1).

I do highly suggest that if you try the deck out before making a hurried response with opinions about it. This is not to say that I am not open to opinions, but I prefer they be informed opinions with knowledge and experience of the feel of the deck and the speed at which it works.

Thanks,
mickey
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Eldariel
Level 3 Judge


Joined: 15 Jun 2006
Posts: 277

PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2009 7:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I strongly suggest packing more relevant spells. If you have Pacts, at least play one Regal Force and honestly, since it's Legacy, I'd play Natural Orders and some Elven tribal synergies in Sylvan Messenger. Overall, you may have SOME kind of an aggro plan in there, but that aggro plan loses to a single Tarmogoyf.

Also, Exploration & Land Grant are both horrible. It's not a good idea to let your opponent know what to counter and it's an even worse plan to play Explorations in a deck with EIGHT (!!) lands. Indeed, no matter how many mana producers you have, you need ~8 more lands before you can play at all. Your aren't even running Elvish Spirit Guide.


Survival Elves would offer a much more powerful gameplan with more resiliency for counters, while variety of Combo Elves are basically your deck...except with some relevant spells besides Glimpse and more robust construction overall (though I wonder the Crossroads and Alarm in the first list...I just listed it 'cause it packs Natural Order).
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thnkr



Joined: 16 Sep 2009
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2009 11:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Eldariel wrote:
I strongly suggest packing more relevant spells. If you have Pacts, at least play one Regal Force and honestly, since it's Legacy, I'd play Natural Orders and some Elven tribal synergies in Sylvan Messenger. Overall, you may have SOME kind of an aggro plan in there, but that aggro plan loses to a single Tarmogoyf.

Also, Exploration & Land Grant are both horrible. It's not a good idea to let your opponent know what to counter and it's an even worse plan to play Explorations in a deck with EIGHT (!!) lands. Indeed, no matter how many mana producers you have, you need ~8 more lands before you can play at all. Your aren't even running Elvish Spirit Guide.


Survival Elves would offer a much more powerful gameplan with more resiliency for counters, while variety of Combo Elves are basically your deck...except with some relevant spells besides Glimpse and more robust construction overall (though I wonder the Crossroads and Alarm in the first list...I just listed it 'cause it packs Natural Order).


I don't suppose that you tried it out before deciding on how you feel it could be improved?

I understand that some of the card choices don't seem to feel correct, but there are reasons behind them. For example, the Explorations help to empty your hand of land as you go off (normally goes of on 2nd or 3rd turn) so that you can use the Land Grants to weed the land out of the deck as it is going off. It also helps to accelerate the deck if you don't have the Nettle Sentinels on the board yet. I don't use larger creatures and spells that cost more than 2 (the only 2 casting cost spells I pay for are the Grapeshot and the Elvish Visionary). The Explorations also help immensely with mana acceleration with the Quirion Rangers and Wirewood Symbiotes working together.

I know that people do not favor the Land Grants because it shows my hand, but that is only relevant to countermagic control decks, which have a tough time with the deck anyways due to so much being played so fast. The mana acceleration is such that it is tough for countermagic decks to keep up. I can normally drop my entire hand by the 2nd turn, unless I'm going off, in which case that means that they did not counter the Glimpse of Nature. If they don't counter the Glimpse of Nature then it's usually game. Thus, the Glimpse forces them to use whatever counter they can afford with 0-2 mana, and from there I can empty my hand of all the elves and start swinging for 5-7 a turn. If you think about it, that's like a green Ball Lightning that gets to stick around.

The aggro plan doesn't really lose to a single Tarmogoyf due to the sheer number of creatures at the speed of which they hit the board. The opponent may be able to take out an elf at a time by blocking with the Tarmogoyf, but that puts the opponent on the defense. That's assuming the Tarmogoyf can avoid an early Grapeshot.

I do politely ask that you try out the deck. As strange as the deck may appear, it does work. I will take advice freely, but I do ask that the advice comes from experience with playing the deck and fully understanding how it works.

Respectfully,
mickey
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Arkham



Joined: 28 Jul 2009
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2009 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Incredible. Almost all one mana .... Ancient Tomb (city of traitors) - Chalice. Boom!, all lost. Look side against it because if you don't you'll have a GREAT problem
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Eldariel
Level 3 Judge


Joined: 15 Jun 2006
Posts: 277

PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2009 3:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've played against Combo Elves a great deal in Legacy and I can tell you which cards I lose games to. I actually have. I can also tell you which cards allow me to fuck you over, as I have.

If you Land Grant for your first land and I have a Force/Daze, of course I'm gonna stop you from playing anything and just kill you. The gain is not worth the risk (mostly because THERE IS NO GAIN TO SPEAK OF; +1 storm? O.o).

And I don't care about your experience, your landcount is MATHEMATICALLY TOO LOW. Do you know why even 10-land Stompy plays 10 lands + 4 Land Grants? That's right, 'cause if you run under 14 lands you just cross the threshold from acceptable number of hands with lands to unacceptable; this is assuming a curve of "1" of course.


Also, yeah, maybe the aggro plan works once in a blue moon; how should I know, I haven't played this deck until a blue moon. I do know that vast majority of the decks do NOT lose to a bunch of 1/1 dorks though; there's a reason Elves wasn't a deck in Legacy for a long time.

The way I see it, you can possibly beat Merfolk and midrange decks, and lose to basically everything else. Adding more engines would incredibly improve your MU against e.g. Zoo & Goblins and getting rid of Land Grants & getting yourself more power in the deck would vastly improve your capability to win against blue decks.


Adding few lands would improve your game overall and make you more resilient to mulligans and enable mulliganing for good hands instead of just for lands. Exploration...is a win-more. Once you're going off, you don't NEED to play all the lands you draw, you'll win anyways.



Not everything in making a deck requires rigorous testing. There's this thing called "Magic Theory" and it's been fine-tuned for over 10 years. When there are things such as mana ratios, it's worth drawing upon that information.

Likewise, you know that a card like Exploration is completely useless when you aren't already winning, so you cut it for something that helps you win instead of its role, which is to help you win slightly more impressively. It doesn't even really increase your consistency when going off as lands don't draw you cards either way. There's just no reason to play it here.
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thnkr



Joined: 16 Sep 2009
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2009 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I suppose we'll just have to disagree, then.
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Eldariel
Level 3 Judge


Joined: 15 Jun 2006
Posts: 277

PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2009 4:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thnkr wrote:
I suppose we'll just have to disagree, then.


If you want, catch me online sometimes and we can play a dozen test games with me piloting a bunch of established decks (let's say Goblins, Zoo, Merfolk, Tempo Thresh, Countertop Thresh, Ad Nauseam Tendrils & Elf Survival) and find out that no, Explorations aren't pulling their weight and neither are Land Grants.

I'm just offering you a shortcut here to avoid the rigorous testing process. But if you really consider the testing necessary and need the results to convince you that the changes I'm suggesting would make the deck better, catch me online at some point and we'll arrange 10-game serieses pre- and post-board for each of those matches.
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thnkr



Joined: 16 Sep 2009
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2009 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i just played 3 games against survival elves, won all three. The third game I didn't go off, the guy had two Force of Wills to stop it. I ended up winning via elf damage and a Grapeshot for 5.
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thnkr



Joined: 16 Sep 2009
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 11:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Didn't ask for his decklist, but I can tell you what I saw in the deck. I saw duel-lands with the searchlands, Survival of the Fittest, BoP, Qurion Ranger, Anger, Genesis, FoW's, Tradewind Rider, Masticore, Spore Frog, counterspell. I don't know how many of each, I'm guessing 1 of each Anger, Genesis, Rider and Masticore. I'm guessing 4 FoW's and Counterspells, BoP and Rangers. He also ran Enlightened Tutors, I'm guessing for the Survival. That's what he always used them for. I believe he had more creatures to play, but he was on the defense rather quickly. After the first game he wouldn't play anything on his turn if he could help it in order to save mana to counter my start. The first game was a 2nd turn kill.
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Eldariel
Level 3 Judge


Joined: 15 Jun 2006
Posts: 277

PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 11:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

thnkr wrote:
Didn't ask for his decklist, but I can tell you what I saw in the deck. I saw duel-lands with the searchlands, Survival of the Fittest, BoP, Qurion Ranger, Anger, Genesis, FoW's, Tradewind Rider, Masticore, Spore Frog, counterspell. I don't know how many of each, I'm guessing 1 of each Anger, Genesis, Rider and Masticore. I'm guessing 4 FoW's and Counterspells, BoP and Rangers. He also ran Enlightened Tutors, I'm guessing for the Survival. That's what he always used them for. I believe he had more creatures to play, but he was on the defense rather quickly. After the first game he wouldn't play anything on his turn if he could help it in order to save mana to counter my start. The first game was a 2nd turn kill.


That's not Elf Survival, that's Tradewind Survival. It's an obsolete, slow controllish midrange deck.
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thnkr



Joined: 16 Sep 2009
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 11:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, okdoke. Ya, the 4 Grapeshot won me 3 of the games, allowing me to clear his creatures 2 of the games for elf damage.
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