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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2019 2:34 am 
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I like the idea of running a few Warrent // Wardens. How's it doing in testing so far?




EDIT: How crazy am I for wondering is Sky Tether is playable in constructed? It's a 1 mana removal spell in control. You don't care that it's target becomes a defender on the ground if your win cons are flyers and PWers. You have enough sweepers that enchantment removal isn't too scary, if that one mana buys you turns before they find it - and the cheap cost helps you play other spells where more costly removal wouldn't.

The obvious nonbo in Esper is with Eldest Reborn, and maybe (prob) that's enough to never consider further there - but I'm thinking it could be good in control decks that don't have access to Reborn but do pack sweepers (Bant, Azorius, Jeskai, or maybe even some goofy Naya build that wants to use W for mass removal, G for ramp and Wilderness Reclamation, and R for big burn finishers).

Since we are discussing Esper in this thread: it's not completely insane to use the card you suggested, however there are just better alternatives right now. It would take the spot of Moment of Craving or Warrant // Warden, both of which have more upsides (only negative side is 1 mana more expensive). Craving is needed for the 2 life vs RDW, Warrant // Warden is just more versatile, since you can use Warden vs. any deck, not just aggro (will be more important as the meta moves away from fast aggro to midrange and control).

As for how Warrant // Warden performs, it is better than Moment of Craving in most situations unless you need that 2 life early on to survive (vs. RDW, maybe WWr). Right now it's hard to remove Moment of Craving from the deck and feel safe, because you meet RDW everywhere you go (less on ladder but still). It is definitely a good choice of card to use when the meta becomes less agressive, which usually happens a few weeks after a new set lands.


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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2019 5:22 pm 
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So I had started on Grixis because I opened a bunch of Bedevil but I saw the error of my ways, came back to roost, and all that.

I'm still not running Lyra and have found no reason to, I guess we have different metas.

Quench is great. Better than Sync at the moment indeed.

What's the reasoning behind Dis/Disp over Insight?
Especially when you're only running 1x Fake News


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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2019 11:47 pm 
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otrisk wrote:
So I had started on Grixis because I opened a bunch of Bedevil but I saw the error of my ways, came back to roost, and all that.

I'm still not running Lyra and have found no reason to, I guess we have different metas.

Quench is great. Better than Sync at the moment indeed.

What's the reasoning behind Dis/Disp over Insight?
Especially when you're only running 1x Fake News


Turn 2 action is just something I value highly. And while it has 1 main deck Campaign, it has 2 more in the board.

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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 4:47 pm 
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With all the enchantments out there which are basically must-answer threats, I feel that Mortify is an automatic 3-4 of, rather than a 2 of.
Also, I was thinking the same about Sky Tether, but by god I will never stop running Eldest Reborn (too much plus), so it's a 'no' for me.

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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 9:35 am 
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Here is my esper contral, doing not to bad in bo1 in an aggro meta, but doing average in bo3.
I think both my sideboard and my use of it can be improved.

4 Thought Erasure
2 Search for Azcanta
4 Moment of Craving
2 Syncopate

3 Mortify
3 Absorb

4 Kaya's Wrath
3 Chemister's Insight
3 Vraska's Contempt

3 Teferi, Hero of Dominaria
2 The Eldest Reborn
1 Lyra Dawnbringer

4 Watery Grave
3 Hallowed Fountain
4 Godless Shrine
4 Glacial Fortress
4 Drowned Catacomb
1 Island
2 Swamp
4 Isolated Chapel

2 Unmoored Ego
3 Negate
3 Duress
3 Cry of the Carnarium
1 Vraska's Contempt
2 Revitalize
1 Chromium, the Mutable

Spoiler


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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 11:06 am 
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I'm not an esper expert at all, but my inclination for bo3 would be to cut lyra and some number of cravings from the maindeck. Super aggressive strats don't seem to be very common, at least from my experience so far, you're way more likely to be running into izzet drakes/sultai midrange/esper stuff than rdw or gw tokens and of those decks only drakes might care about Lyra at all and cast down is just better than craving against all of them.

For your sideboard I think you might need Consecrate // Consume for the sultai lists both as a clean answer to tyrant and as a way of denying krasis rebuying from graveyard, it also gets around dive down. For an actual finisher I'm not sure, maybe maindeck Chromium instead of Lyra - at least it can trade with a tyrant if needed and has a bit more protection.

I'm sure wiser folk will give their opinion though.


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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2019 4:03 pm 
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Does Absorb replace Sinister Sabotage now?

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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:24 pm 
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Does Absorb replace Sinister Sabotage now?

It depends on your build. I played around with a deck that follows the current meta build, and there you would play Absorb. You can also play a version with Sabotage, where you rely more on the surveil mechanic, in combination with cards like Disinformation Campaign (Vert runs that version). I would say both are viable, which one is better is hard to say though. It also depends on the meta, if there's less hyper aggro, then Absorb is less needed, and the surveil 1 is much more powerfull. Also the casting cost is more easy on Sabotage, it might mean you could run less shock lands. Since the amount of fast aggro you meet (especially in Bo3) declines after 1-2 weeks of a new set, the surveil based deck might actually be better right now.

Wacky0 wrote:
Here is my esper contral, doing not to bad in bo1 in an aggro meta, but doing average in bo3.
I think both my sideboard and my use of it can be improved.

I don't think you can run 1 build for both Bo1 and Bo3, they are 2 completely different games. Assuming from the SB you will want to play Bo3, I would agree that you don't need to run 4 Moment of Craving, best replace those with 2x Cast down and 2x slots for other things, like 1 more Teferi, 1 more Absorb (or go for 4x Sabotage, and replace 1x Reborn for 1x Disinformation Campaign). I also found that running 3x Azcanta (and then running only 3 Teferi) helps the consistency of the deck, having an Azcanta in your opening hand is just extremely good, and even a 2nd later on is not a total waste.


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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2019 9:08 am 
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Turbo wrote:
Does Absorb replace Sinister Sabotage now?

It depends on your build. I played around with a deck that follows the current meta build, and there you would play Absorb. You can also play a version with Sabotage, where you rely more on the surveil mechanic, in combination with cards like Disinformation Campaign (Vert runs that version). I would say both are viable, which one is better is hard to say though. It also depends on the meta, if there's less hyper aggro, then Absorb is less needed, and the surveil 1 is much more powerfull. Also the casting cost is more easy on Sabotage, it might mean you could run less shock lands. Since the amount of fast aggro you meet (especially in Bo3) declines after 1-2 weeks of a new set, the surveil based deck might actually be better right now.

Wacky0 wrote:
Here is my esper contral, doing not to bad in bo1 in an aggro meta, but doing average in bo3.
I think both my sideboard and my use of it can be improved.

I don't think you can run 1 build for both Bo1 and Bo3, they are 2 completely different games. Assuming from the SB you will want to play Bo3, I would agree that you don't need to run 4 Moment of Craving, best replace those with 2x Cast down and 2x slots for other things, like 1 more Teferi, 1 more Absorb (or go for 4x Sabotage, and replace 1x Reborn for 1x Disinformation Campaign). I also found that running 3x Azcanta (and then running only 3 Teferi) helps the consistency of the deck, having an Azcanta in your opening hand is just extremely good, and even a 2nd later on is not a total waste.


Yeah I played a mirror against the Surveil list and I lost. I can't seem to find a current updated list for that anywhere. @Divinevert you wanna share?

Edit: Nevermind I see his deck. Not too different to what I have been running. But the deck I ran against had that 1/1 flyer that surveiled everytime it attacked or something. That in combo with disinformation was a pain.

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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2019 6:57 am 
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I'm thinking of picking up this deck once I have more wildcards to spare, but am concerned about one thing: how bad are game 1s of Esper control mirrors? Do they take forever? Post-board games should speed up tremendously, but pre-board with both sides having way too many answers and not enough threats, it could be miserable as hell.


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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 2:27 am 
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Banedon wrote:
I'm thinking of picking up this deck once I have more wildcards to spare, but am concerned about one thing: how bad are game 1s of Esper control mirrors? Do they take forever? Post-board games should speed up tremendously, but pre-board with both sides having way too many answers and not enough threats, it could be miserable as hell.

I don't think Esper is bad vs control round 1. But yeah with any control deck matches can take a while. What I found most important (with any deck) is keeping track of the meta, and then adapting your deck to deal with it. In a control heavy meta for example you don't want to run too many or any Moment of Craving (just an obvious example). If you just netdeck and try to plow through an onslaught of decks it isn't tuned for, you are in for a rough ride.


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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 5:38 am 
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By "bad" I don't mean the matchup is bad in the 20% win rate sense (after all, you are also a control deck, and mirror matches logically should be 50-50), I meant that it takes a long time. Like, I look at the typical Esper control lists and they have so few ways to win - it's just Teferi emblems, The Eldest Reborn (weak against an opponent with no creatures), and Karn as a one-of. Both sides are loaded with answers, which means Karn will never actually win the game, which means the games end by Teferi emblems and milling. But that means game 1s could go on forever, longer even than Nexus combos.

I imagine postboard games end much faster because of the threat of Thief of Sanity, but preboard sounds like ... wow. Is that really the case?


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 Post subject: Re: Esper Control
PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 1:16 pm 
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The Esper mirror is comparable to the Nexus mirror in a sense: If you have to play it out it takes ages; most of the time players will know to concede early enough.

The KO criteria for me are a Teferi emblem (unbeatable) and an active Azcanta vs. no pressure (at that point you'd have to get VERY lucky to win)

From a game length standpoint, I made the experience that actually Sultai mirrors can take quite a bit longer because Sultai doesn't lock the opponent out. In Esper mirrors, a small advantage counts for a lot more than a small advantage in a Sultai mirror.
That said, Esper generally does not have the ability to win in the early turns, while Sultai has definitely seen some early concessions against an uncontested t3 Vivien, for instance.

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