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Mono-Blue Devotion for Big Standard Event

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Joined: 11 Sep 2013
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Wed Dec 11, 2013 2:48 pm    Post subject: Mono-Blue Devotion for Big Standard Event Reply with quote

I am on my way to another standard tournament this weekend and once again I find myself un-able to prepare the way I should, by playing as many games as possible. So I turn to the magic community again for input and advice.

The deck I am going to be piloting is Mono-Blue Devotion (see decklist below) and while I am no stranger to the deck I donít know all the matchups as well as I should. I will be playing in a standard event were the prizes for Top 8 is total of 12 boxes so assuming a Top 8 split 54 packs per person or top prize is a case. This leads me to believe most people in the event will be piloting tier 1 decks.

Decklist: Mono-Blue Devotion

Land (24):
20 Island
3 Mutavault
1 Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx

Creatures (30):
4 Cloudfin Raptor
4 Frostburn Weird
4 Judgeís Familiar
4 Master of Waves
4 Nightveil Spector
2 Omen Speaker
4 Thassa, God of the Sea
4 Tidebinder Mage

Spells (6):
2 Bident of Thassa
3 Cyclonic Rift
1 Jace, Architect of Thought

Sideboard (15):
3 Gainsay
3 Jace, Architect of Thought
3 Negate
1 Pithing Needle
3 Rapid Hybridization
2 Ratchet Bomb

For the most part my deck choices are pretty typical as mono blue builds itself; I start to veer away with the 2 copies of Omen Speaker, third copy of Rift, and only 1 Jace. I think I would like to increase the number of Jace and add a copy or 2 of rapid hybridization to main deck to make my matchups against control and mono-black better but with the slew of recent white/x aggro decks I think to 2 copies of omen speaker are well represented. After the last couple tournaments seeing control decks main deck anywhere from 2-4 last breath and a flurry of other spot removal to keep Thassa offline and trash Master of Waves, I might consider Mizzium Skins as a sideboard option. It triples up against Electrickery, Golgari Charm, Shrivel and spot removal. 1-2 Domesticate might make it into the side against Mono-Blue, I donít think I will ever want to side in 3 negate so probably take out one of those.

Expected Meta Game Breakdown:
Orzhov Control: Recently GP Dallas Winner and New Deck, likely people will mimic
Azorious Control: Higher Level Players at the Shop will gravitate toward proven control decks
Esper Control: Ditto
Mono-Blue Devotion: I have played this at the store before and convinced many of its power
Mono-Black Devotion: Has done very well lately with many top 8s and finishes
White Aggro (RW devotion GW Weenies Ect.): recent success here and there and is built to beat MBD
GR Devotion: I know a couple guys that run this as there ďWinĒ deck and expect locals to copy as well

I primarily choose the decks for the metagame break down for this tournament from recent SCG, TCG, and Wizards events. I also applied a little bit I know about the store like the higher level player tend to lean toward the control decks and some people will just try to play what they think no one else will play.

Sideboard Plan-

Orzhov Control: -2 Omen Speaker, -2 Cyclonic Rift, -2 Bident of Thassa
+3 Rapid Hybridization, +2 Jace, Architect of Thought, +1 Ratchet Bomb

Our game play against Orzhov Control is about the same as against mono-black. Hybridize for desecration demons and maybe pack rat it they drop it early enough, Jace will help get card advantage but if I change side these will probably be better as Mizzium skins for their removal. Plus more Jaces make their Heroís Downfall better. Speakers come out because they donít block well against this deck and they donít even draw removal spells away from other creatures. Scry is a minimal loss as many versions of this deck donít run them at all. I leave in 1 copy of Rift because it can save me against a pack rat army if necessary and if they tap out turn 4 to play demon, I bounce it and swing forcing them to replay next turn. After that I can sacrifice a creature to tap him and my opponent should be about dead at that point.

Azorious Control: -3 Cyclonic Rift, -1 Tidebinder Mage, -2 Omen Speaker
+ 3 Jace, Architect of Thought, +3 Negate (Maybe +2 Negate +1 Pithing Needle)

Jace comes in against most control to give me some card advantage and keep me going after verdicts. He does get targeted by Detention Sphere a lot but at least itís not Thassa. Tidebinder comes out because heís not a mini Aetherling and heís just a 2/2 bear in this match up. I would rather have a Negate in hand most times. While Gainsay does hit a lot of the important cards in this matchup it misses Elspeth and last breath which has seen increasing amount of play in main decks and sideboards. Although I do like the idea of 1 needle 2 negate because the needle helps catch Elspeth after she resolves and offers me a weapon against Aetherling.

Esper Control: -3 Cyclonic Rift, -2 Omen Speaker -2 Bident of Thassa
+ 3 Jace, Architect of Thought, +3 Negate, +1 Needle

Our game plan against Esper is essentially the same as against Azorious. This matchup we want all 3 negate because with the added black they will have more creature removal we will want to stop. This gives more credence to the Mizzium Skin idea but for now we have negate. Also with them having more creature removal Bident become less effective so we drop a Bident for a Pithing Needle which will likely have the additional target of Ashiok. This makes it more important in this matchup than in the Azorious one.

Mono Blue Devotion (Mirror): -1 Bident of Thassa, -2 Omen Speaker, -1Cyclonic Rift
+3 Gainsay +1 Jace, Architect of Thought

This strategy is pretty obvious although I think I would like to have some Domesticates in there somewhere as well. Omen Speakers donít really block anything except Mutavault and Tidebinder but they donít stop the binder from hitting my Frostburns so I still lose a blocker. Assuming there board state looks the same a mine itís going to be a stand still for the most part so Bident will only be effective if I have a larger Cloudfin Raptor than them or Thassa. If I have Thassa I am going to want to use her unblockable ability to make her hit for 5+ damage rather than cast Bident. Gainsays hopefully will stop their Thassas and Nightveil Spectors as he will be a beast in this matchup. In the mirror he is basically bigger better thieving magpie. Jace will help with the game via card advantage so good to have extra. Also he is another problem card to make them use up there counters, or finds me more Thassa or Master if they counter my first.

Mono-Black Devotion: -2 Omen Speaker, -2 Bident of Thassa, -2 Cyclonic Rift
+2 Jace, Architect of Thought, (or Mizzium Skins) +3 Rapid Hybridization,
+1 Ratchet bomb

Same as for Orzhov Control more or less.

White/X Aggro Decks: -3 Cyclonic Rift
+1 Jace, Architect of Thought, +2 Ratchet Bomb

I should have a good matchup against these decks already with my 2 costing guys having large toughness and my Tidebinder locks down Experiment Ones and Dryad Militants. Rift is just a delaying tactic in this matchup as it will be unlikely I will be able to overload it. Anything I bounce will get recast without too much tempo lost for my opponent. Only way this would change is if they are running any enchantments then I might keep a rift or two in to stop some of that shenanigans.
GR Devotion: -3 Cyclonic Rift -2 Omen Speaker
+3 Rapid Hybridization +1 Ratchet Bomb +1 Pithing Needle

I havenít played this matchup many times but this seems to be a good strategy. The only thing Speaker blocks is Burning Tree Emissary, everything else they attack with kills it. Rift is just a delaying tactic against this deck and not even very effective. Best use for it is probably bouncing a Voyaging Satyr so they need another turn to go nuts with NykthosÖ they come out. Rapid hybridization kills Polukranos, possibly a Voyaging Satyr or Stormbreath Dragon. Ratchet bomb is really a guess/luck shot vs a Mistcutter Hydra if they have one and pithing needle is necessary for Planeswalkers which include Domir, Garruk, Chandra, and can use it on Nylea if really necessary.

So that is my game plan going into this event. I interested for your input on it and my ideas for sideboard alterations.

Thanks Again.
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Joined: 28 Sep 2004
Posts: 151

PostPosted: Thu Dec 12, 2013 9:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

get those omenspeakers out of there its not good enough in an aggro deck especially..

// Lands
20 [THS] Island (3)
3 [M14] Mutavault
1 [THS] Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx

// Creatures
4 [GTC] Cloudfin Raptor
4 [THS] Thassa, God of the Sea
4 [RTR] Frostburn Weird
4 [RTR] Judge's Familiar
4 [THS] Master of Waves
4 [M14] Tidebinder Mage
4 [FBP] Nightveil Specter

// Spells
2 [RTR] Jace, Architect of Thought
2 [THS] Bident of Thassa
2 [RTR] Cyclonic Rift
2 [GTC] Rapid Hybridization

// Sideboard
SB: 2 [RTR] Jace, Architect of Thought
SB: 1 [THS] Bident of Thassa
SB: 1 [GTC] Rapid Hybridization
SB: 2 [RTR] Mizzium Skin
SB: 2 [ROE] Domestication
SB: 2 [M12] Negate
SB: 3 [THS] Gainsay
SB: 2 [M14] Claustrophobia
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Joined: 23 Jul 2008
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 11:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not boarding out Weirds in the mirror match is one of the biggest mistakes people playing monoU do. For the side I play 4 Gainsays and 2 Domestication (1 in main), you have to win the mirror match regularly.
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