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PostPosted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:14 pm 
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I don't see that much value in white, tbh. I understand the appeal with the fixing options, but GB Briar Snake would be more consistent with only a minor power drop.

KLD Season King of the Hill Winner.
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The one true King of NGA Magic Duels on Xbox One.

You want some? Come get some. You don't like me? Bite me.

Day 1,000 of the never-ending Vert monarchy.


Magic's a simple game, 2 people take turns playing cards and in the end Divinevert wins 2-0...

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:23 pm 
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Location: Portugal
divinevert wrote:
I don't see that much value in white, tbh. I understand the appeal with the fixing options, but GB Briar Snake would be more consistent with only a minor power drop.

Well, in this version Selfless Spirit is important removal Defense, the other reason is Ajani plus his Oath.
Angelic purge, as I mentioned is a hit-all removal with synergy and there's also anguished unmaking.
Gideon is just goodstuff here.

Stockpile is cute, but useful.

Also, an extra color makes Woodland Wanderer much better (and the Unbridled Growths can make it even bigger)
The briar Snake deck benefits from white. The non-briar version should probably be :g::b:, but I like this version and it has beaten other Snake decks, so there's that...

Give me land, Give me fire, Give me that which I desire! :mage:
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:16 pm 

Joined: Apr 24, 2017
Posts: 1
Haven_pt wrote:
So this is pretty much my final draft of the briar deck. Its mid-rangish and easily goes very tall. Its been quite consistent on the ladder at R40 and can hold its own against most of the meta.

The life of briar

2 x Selfless Spirit
3 x Winding Constrictor
1 x Yahenni, Undying Partisan
4 x Bloodbriar
2 x Tireless Tracker
2 x Woodland Wanderer
1 x Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet
1 x Verdurous Gearhulk
1 x The Gitrog Monster

2 x Fatal Push
2 x Anguished Unmaking

2 x Angelic Purge
2 x Yahenni's Expertise

3 x Unbridled Growth
3 x Hidden Stockpile
2 x Oath of Ajani

1 x Nissa, Voice of Zendikar
1 x Gideon, Ally of Zendikar
1 x Ajani Unyielding

2 x Shambling Vent
2 x Plains
3 x Swamp
2 x Hissing Quagmire
2 x Canopy Vista
4 x Forest
2 x Sunpetal Grove
2 x Woodland Cemetery
1 x Westvale Abbey
4 x Evolving Wilds

To view this deck go to: ... 79e678ecd2

Created using Magic Duels Helper:

Don't underestimate the briar, it can grow very quickly. An idea curve goes something like:
T1 Unbridled
T2 Snake
T3 briar (sac the Unbridled if you don't need the fixing and briar goes 4/5, out of Grasp range)
T4 Tracker into Evolving Wilds (which you sac and briar is 6/7 out of Grasp/burn range) and you have a clue ready for next turn.
T5 drop Nissa or Oath of Ajani and go to town...

Dream play? Not really, that's the kind of draws I get all the time... The deck has plenty of cheap bombs that get very big and can apply pressure very early, most decks will have a hard time dealing with so many.
I guess you could add the Last Push and more angelic purge which, are top-notch is this deck, because they exile all those troublesome Vehicles and tutelages while making the briar grow (don't be afraid to sac Land, the deck has plenty).
Weaknesses: a tendency to flood later on and a certain weakness to flying. Things like Avacyn can be a problem, but going much taller than her usually helps and don't forget those purges too.

I like you'r deck. but i try a black and green deck (just for see ... ba16d93435 )

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:46 pm 
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Posts: 9526
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
I need to talk a little about the oldest deck I’m play ne. It’s Zerris’ The Fading Light. An absolutely elegant control build. It’s in the running for the top five best decks ever in Duels. It’s still going with the original build from July 24, 2016. I just wanted to give it a quick shout out cuz I just ended a 38-0 win streak after running into conflux Superfriends

Gotta stop keeping those two landers.

Current record is 73-9

It escaped losing two in a row already so it and four other lucky deck builders are still in the running for best Duels deck of all time.

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There's a limited amount of fun to be had in a single game, and this deck will ensure no one has any of it.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:05 am 

Joined: Nov 03, 2013
Posts: 2581
Thanks Barney. I like trying out these decks that you've been playing for years. I'm playing Make Big Plays right now because of you. I don't have as good a record as you but I assume that's because you're on XBox and I'm on Steam.

I'm gonna quote Zerris' OP here for everyone's ease, since we're talking about it. I'll double check the decklist to make sure I have everything tomorrow when I'm home.

So, you're using the original list? The one with Ulamog and no Dec in Stone?

Zerris wrote:
V 1.1
* Added 2x Declaration in Stone, 1x Reclamation Sage
* Removed 1x Tamiyo's Journal, 1x Oath of Liliana, 1x Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger

Removed "cute" cards to add more solid (and cheap) removal. Reclamation Sage can be tutored by Bellower and recurred by Liliana (in addition to Greenwarden, of course) which lets it hit multiple times against Mill / Enchantment heavy decks. Declaration in Stone is just a solid card, and helps against mass tokens and a lot of the more problematic creatures against us (Ulamog, Greenwarden, anything that recurs).


I've now played up to Rank 30 in the new season, and feel like I have a rough handle on the developing metagame. There's a lot of aggro - primarily humans, in a variety of colors, taking advantage of the new anthems and Thalia. There's a lot of midrange G/B decks, very similar to last format with the addition of Murder. There's some people trying to durdle for days with graveyard recursion strategies - zombies or otherwise. And there's a variety of people playing janky brews attempting to make Delirium or Emerge into things (they're not) or Vampires (it might be, but it's still worse than humans).

The notable absences:

Five colors walkers is completely dead. The mana base is unplayably bad without Sylvan Ranger, and there are no viable replacements that are cheap enough, versatile enough, and have enough board presence to keep you alive against aggro. Four color walkers can survive, but it needs to be very lean on the colors, and might need to run things like Explosive Vegetation.

Esper Control got a ton of tools - but the aggro decks got way more. If you face off against Mono-White or W/R or W/G Humans and you don't have Languish on turn four or Planar Outburst on turn five, you die. If they have Selfless Spirit, Planar Outburst might not be enough. I think Counter-Control still has a home somewhere, but it's a lot tougher.

Ramp got basically nothing. Brisela is playable, but it's not a significant upgrade. Also, one of Ramp's better matchups (Walkers) is gone, and their worst matchup (Humans) is stronger than ever. The strategy's still playable, but definitely worse.

With all that in mind, you probably know me (or should) as the person who always wants to be playing the biggest and strongest midrange deck. Especially with Esper Control being at a low in the new meta, we can go very big and not worry about getting countered off all our payoffs. The trouble, of course, is surviving to get there. This is my current approach:

The Fading Light ()


2x Sylvan Advocate
1x Nissa, Vastwood Seer/Nissa, Sage Animist
2x Tireless Tracker
1x Liliana, the Last Hope
1x Gisela, the Broken Blade/Brisela, Voice of Nightmares
1x Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet
1x Gideon, Ally of Zendikar
1x Archangel Avacyn/Avacyn, the Purifier
1x Ob Nixilis Reignited
1x Linvala, the Preserver
1x Greenwarden of Murasa
1x Woodland Bellower
1x Sorin, Grim Nemesis
1x Bruna, the Fading Light/Brisela, Voice of Nightmares


3x Blessed Alliance
3x Grasp of Darkness
2x Declaration in Stone
1x Reclamation Sage
3x Murder
2x Anguished Unmaking
2x Languish
2x Tragic Arrogance

Lands (26)

2x Plains
6x Swamp
2x Forest
4x Evolving Wilds
2x Hissing Quagmire
2x Shambling Vent
2x Canopy Vista
2x Woodland Cemetery
2x Isolated Chapel
2x Sunpetal Grove

Mana Source Reasoning
Pretty simply here - this deck is very mana hungry, in exactly three colors. We have no space for fancy lands, so take all the playable duels and fetches, and fill in the rest with basics. We've got and costs we want to be able to fetch for, but overwhelmingly need , so all the spares are swamps. There's some argument for adding a third Forest for Nissa, but casting black spells reliably matters so much more. Gisela is a pretty bad turn four play (she either dies, gets tapped, or gets bounced) so you mostly want on turn five.

Those familiar with the last set might recognize this deck - it's Four Color Walkers! Wait, didn't I just say walkers was basically dead from lack of mana fixing? Well, that's why we're down to three colors now - Red has been cut entirely. We're also playing non-walker spells in and now, which means we can cut Oath of Nissa - notorious for showing you Languish but refusing to let you select it - because it doesn't actually improve the mana base. The only casualty is Nissa, Voice of Zendikar, who was decent against aggro decks - much less so with Thalia, Heretic Cathar around, though. We've also lost a lot of early creatures, with Sylvan Ranger gone for good, and Lambholt Pacifists missing in action. Instead, they've been replaced with a boatload of removal.

The main reason for this push is twofold - first, Thalia is a very real issue for trying to play blockers. Ride Down causes much the same problem. Against Bant, Spell Queller eats your sorcery speed play for value, and Reflector Mage bounces it. The short version is that playing cards and expecting to block with them is probably expecting too much. If you want to survive against aggro, you'll need to either kill things or gain an incredible amount of life (or both). The addition of Murder also forces us into costs - at which point, Grasp of Darkness is a much more reasonable card. Blessed Alliance is also an all-star; it edicts without needing to pay , and late in the game gains you some life on the side. The untap option is even good against Thalia or Tamiyo. Most notably, the lack of any creatureless control/mill decks allows us to feel fairly comfortable playing 13 cards that do nothing but kill creatures. Side benefit, this deck has no fear of man-lands (and gets to blow out aura decks) with all the instant speed removal.

Tragic Arrogance over Planar Outburst is - for the moment - a metagame call. I've run into a lot of Ulvenwald Mysteries decks on the ladder, and Tragic Arrogance is one of the few cards that can sweep up the creatures, the clues, and the enchantments at the same time. I think the value of a 4/4 land in comparison is very low - it's only really good for pressuring walkers, and we have other tools for that (including Arrogance if they play multiple).

The finishers were also all chosen with a specific goal in mind - if Murder is going to be floating around a lot, they need to be good even if they die on the spot. Against mono-white, they need to be able to block or interact with multiple creatures, immediately. Thus, every threat from Gideon on down brings a second threat or a removal effect with it. Kalitas adds so much value to your removal spells that he's worth the cost of not having an immediate impact, and Gisela is primarily there to meld with Bruna - she's actually lackluster on her own in most matchups. Bruna, by comparison, can return Tireless Tracker, Gisela, Avacyn, or Linvala.

And that's a wrap...

Welcome to the new EMN format, and all hail our new mono-white human overlords! Luckily, the heroic strategy of "mash all your mythics into a deck" remains alive and well to combat the menace. Suggestions on card selection / strategy appreciated as always, and have fun melding Brisela while discovering the token limit on Zombies! (spoiler: it's 100)

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2018 6:31 pm 
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Posts: 9526
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Nono I’m using version 1.1, I’ve never played Tamiyo Journal in the build I use.

And yeah I’m sure the disparity in records is that Xbox is softer, no doubt

Have fun!! Glad I’m giving you an excuse in trying these awesome decks

Btw read and respect Zerrises paragraph on mana reasoning. He’s not kidding on how bad this deck needs double black RIGHT AWAY

DCG-MTG wrote:
There's a limited amount of fun to be had in a single game, and this deck will ensure no one has any of it.

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