Mill Deck

Mill Deck

Author:
Arkblade
Forum Tag:
[mtgdeck]21534[/mtgdeck]
Type:
Original
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60
Format:
Legacy
Rating:
4.0 (2 votes)
Cost:
$518.62
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54743
magic card

Analysis

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Rating History

Member Vote Decks Rated Decks Posted Threads Started Forum Posts
Arkblade 5 10 7 6 75
3 50 11 17 784

Comments & Discussion

Mill Deck
5/6/2007

Arkblade
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UPDATE: 06.26.07
In order to make the deck more "competitive" I've restructured it a bit. I've added in Damnation, Extirpate, Mana Short, Chromatic Star, and counters. Another addition was Haunting Echoes for late decking which hopefully never happens.

UPDATE: 06.04.07
Removed Psychic Drain, Urborg land, Cabal Coffers, Cabal Ritual, Chainer's and added Howling Mine, Psychatog, Cunning Wish and Memory lapse into the deck. Wishboard contains: Mana Short, Brain Freeze, Extirpate, and Psychic Drain.

UPDATE: 06.03.07
Okay so the deck is performing like it should. I removed Haunting Echoes as well as Traumatize because as Ed has already figured out, they are just too damn slow. However, I did leave in the Glimpses and Twincasts. Also found out that with the added flashback cards, I don't mind the Orbs now at all...thanks again to Ed. Think Twice and Chainer's were added and make huge differences, while Damnation was removed due to it's slowness. I am still testing the deck though, I may need to rearrange a few more things before it's done. For now, I am happy with the results...much better record: 19-6 W/L

UPDATE: 06.03.07
Went back to the basic deck I had before only this time I kept the Orbs and added Damnation and Delay. Oh and did I mention that I have no creatures in the deck now? before anyone says anything else, let me test it first and see what's what.

UPDATE: 06.02.07
Okay, rearranged a few things, took out quite a bit and added a few things. Note: I am not adding white to the deck, not what I want in it and don't see the need. Added 1 Howling Mine, 1 Glimpse, 3 Cabal Rituals, 2 Perplex, 2 Mesmeric Orb (yes I had them, but only 2), and 1 more Polluted Delta. The tests have been somewhat skewed because I chose fast-paced decks to go up against. I have a 14-6 W/L record...not great but not too shabby either. Still making adjustments here and there.

UPDATE: 06.02.07
Added more lands, Howling Mines, Familiars, and KotCM. Added Pithing Needles, Millstones, and Arenas to SB. Junked Circu and Szadek again, as well as Cutpurses. Also reduced number of spells down to 3 copies...yes, I did that on purpose. Thanks to Edemis for waking me up, even though I think this UB mill version is just fine without white.

UPDATE: 06.01.07
Removed Dark Rituals. Added Circu and Szadek to SB.

UPDATE: 05.30.07
Reduced the number of Psychic Drain, Haunting Echoes and Traumatize down to 3 each while adding in 3 copies of Wheel and Deal from the SB. Added 4 Imaginary Pet to the SB for chump blockers when needed. Removed Shadowmage Infiltrator from main deck and dropped into SB (removed Diabolic Vision).

UPDATE: 05.28.07
Added Dark Ritual and removed Szadek and Circu.


Comments welcomed.
http://www.skullcrafts.com

5/26/2007

Cody Dwyer
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just an idea, would you consider adding in some black mana acceleration's. the deck seems a little slow

5/27/2007

komatos
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no complaints and grievances from me, but why 1 Circu and 1 Szadek? are they just there for fun?

5/28/2007

Arkblade
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Both very good points. Added Dark Ritual and removed Szadek and Circu.
http://www.skullcrafts.com

5/29/2007

kz.carlton duvall
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the only problem i see is fast decks with alot of creatures, cause you dont have much to block with
maybe add in some removal like last gasp, dark banishing, poosibly hex (very costly), unsummon may work too...or maybe im worng, idk, just a suggestion
10
kz. AsS P!rates!`<(emoticon)>

5/31/2007

Edemis
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I'm going forward on the basis that this is purely for casual; this is way too slow and craptastic for anything close to nearing competitive. So, with that point settled...

Howling Mine is a must for all mill decks. It decks them and refuels your hand, something crucial when your playing something like a bad burn deck.

White is generally better than black for mill, since it gives you a lot of control elements in Wrath and Swords to Plowshares; this way you're not entirely owned by aggro. As nice as Glimpse is, it's not worth it. Unless you want to go UW with a B splash for Nightscape Familiar and Glimpse. You seem to have enough mone for it.

Cards that deck without any further prompting are win; I don't see how any decking deck can do anything without them. Mesmeric Orb, at least 2 copies of Dreamborn Muse(This IS for casual, right?).

Slowing down that came to a crawl is critical; decking takes a lot of setup, and you won't often have the longest time for it. 4 Propaganda and maybe a few Crawlspace or Ghostly Prison are always welcome.

Haunting Echoes is win more beyond belief. Traumatize is totally useless. Mesmeric Orb decks about as much over a game as it does, comes down earlier, and costs much less. Scalplexis rarely goes more than once, is easily stoppable, and eats up your mana like crap. Nothing should cost more than 4, with as few cards costing that as possible.

Cost reducers. They help. The less commitment you need to make per card, the better.

Counters, Card Advantage. You need to have all the elements of a control deck so you can play like a gimped one after setup. You need to be able to push for as much as possible and maintain your advantage. Decking over a long period is just as effective a short burst, less risky, and more consistent.

Cards that help both you and your opponent are the ones to run. Look at Owling Mine and take a hint. The main reason to run decking is cards like Vision Skeins, which is normally bad, begin to help you both ways. Decking is about breaking the symmetry, not about trying to get it done as fast as possible.

Twincast is stretching it. Relearn at worst, so at least you have some selection.

Cut the Dark Rituals. If your deck didn't have so much expensive chaff than you wouldn't need them.

4 Wheel and Deal. It's almost your best card.

Cutpurse is comparatively inactive. Put in cards than immediately help and are harder to stop. Like counters and card draw.

Your Sideboard sucks. But since this is Casual (Right...?), I guess it doesn't matter. But actually have it do something that be an outlet for crap that you couldn't shove into your main. I hear wishboards are pretty good...

So, resulting in...
-The entire deck except for Remands, Wheel and Deal, Glimpse, Lands
+Lands(total count to 23 or so), -Lands, +Lands for a better manabase or for White over Black
+1 Wheel and Deal
+2-4 Cunnings
+Rest of the deck (Originality!)
-SB
+Wishboard

Make sure the originality at least touches upon the rest of my post.

5/31/2007

Arkblade
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Edemis wrote:
"I'm going forward on the basis that this is purely for casual; this is way too slow and craptastic for anything close to nearing competitive. So, with that point settled... "

#1. This is extended.
#2. It's extremely competitive.
#3. It's no slower than any other extended deck.
#4. Sure, it could use some improvements.

Edemis wrote:
"Howling Mine is a must for all mill decks. It decks them and refuels your hand, something crucial when your playing something like a bad burn deck."

Howling Mine benefits my opponent as much as it does me. It gives them card advantages that I would just as soon not allow them to have. Sure, it's a cheap artifact that forces draw...but it's in no way a mill type of card. It's not like the Mines force my opponent to discard or anything.

Edemis wrote:
"White is generally better than black for mill, since it gives you a lot of control elements in Wrath and Swords to Plowshares; this way you're not entirely owned by aggro. As nice as Glimpse is, it's not worth it. Unless you want to go UW with a B splash for Nightscape Familiar and Glimpse. You seem to have enough mone for it."

Umm...you couldn't be more wrong. I don't feel like going into just why right now, but maybe some other time when you have a chance to look over Glimpse versus Wrath/StP you'll understand.

As for the rest of your post, I'm not entirely convinced you even understand what mill is. You're talking about making a mill deck into a utility-like control mill-like deck...that's not what this is. The goal is to mill and win by mill, not handle every threat that comes up and only using mill as an afterthought.

=)
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6/1/2007

Edemis
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#1. This is extended.
#2. It's extremely competitive.
#3. It's no slower than any other extended deck.
#4. Sure, it could use some improvements.
-------------------------
1. Yet I see four Rits, a card not in the current extended format...
2. WTF?
3. Extended clock is about (generalizing) turn 4 now, unless you have ways of slowing the game to a mind-numbing halt (Chalice, Trinisphere, etc.). There's not a mill deck in creation that can finish up that quickly.
4. Damn right it could.
--------------------------
Howling Mine benefits my opponent as much as it does me. It gives them card advantages that I would just as soon not allow them to have. Sure, it's a cheap artifact that forces draw...but it's in no way a mill type of card. It's not like the Mines force my opponent to discard or anything.
--------------------------
Mill doesn't generally care about the opponent getting card advantage; it's not about gutting them and then winning, it's about setting up a win and dealing with other things as they come. In mill, the symmetry is broken on cards like this. That's the reason you run it. It makes sure you don't run out of fuel.
-------------------------
Umm...you couldn't be more wrong. I don't feel like going into just why right now, but maybe some other time when you have a chance to look over Glimpse versus Wrath/StP you'll understand.

As for the rest of your post, I'm not entirely convinced you even understand what mill is. You're talking about making a mill deck into a utility-like control mill-like deck...that's not what this is. The goal is to mill and win by mill, not handle every threat that comes up and only using mill as an afterthought.
------------------------
I've looked over Glimpse versus Wrath and StP. In any deck that needs time whatsoever, Wrath wins. You can make it three color to add Glimpse if you want... but white is needed, or you autolose to Goblins (or Domain Zoo if you insist that Dark Ritual is extended-legal...). Mill isn't that fastest win condition; it's about long term advantage, not playing like a really bad burn deck.

And, yes, I understand what mill is. Mill is a deck centered around decking your opponent. Which, no matter what method you do it, takes time. Time you need to have. Time that UB doesn't give you. You need to slow the pace of the game down to a point where you have the oppurtunity to play these spells and gain your advantage. Because, to deck your method, you would need 4 Glimpses and a Wheel and Deal, or 5 Glimpses(About). You need time to set up, get those cards, find the mana to play them. That take quite a bit of time, since every time you play a mill spell, you lose tempo. So you need to gain tempo, tempo enough to play all of those spells and come out smiling. Tempo this deck doesn't give you. And the only close to viable strategy I've seen for mill is to play several cards that will mill without your help, and then play the rest of the game like a control deck, exacerbating your opponents problems every so often. You need to be able to deal with your opponents threats at all times, or your dead. And a dead player doesn't do much milling. One thing to remember is that, in order to mill, you opponent only needs to have 1(or 2, depending on the play order) card less in his deck than you do. If you can guarantee that, then you win. So you need to play long term cards; one pop done cards like Glimpse lose you the game unless you can back them up with cards that help over time. That's the reason you never see, and never will see, any burn decks in any top 8. Period. (For the record, creatures do count as long term advantage cards. So close, but not quite.)
----------------------------------
If you have any more questions, feel free to ask. If you really want to play this pile that badly, I guess I'll do whatever I can to help. >_>.

6/1/2007

kz.carlton duvall
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IF dark ritual isnt extended legal...which i have 0 idea if it is or not...maybe you could add in dralnu? it gives glimpse flashback
but it may be too costly...just an idea
kz. AsS P!rates!`<(emoticon)>

6/1/2007

Arkblade
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Edemis wrote:
"1. Yet I see four Rits, a card not in the current extended format..."

My bad, I had forgotten this site doesn't update that frequently. I have removed them from the deck.

Edemis wrote:
"Mill doesn't generally care about the opponent getting card advantage; it's not about gutting them and then winning, it's about setting up a win and dealing with other things as they come. In mill, the symmetry is broken on cards like this. That's the reason you run it. It makes sure you don't run out of fuel."

Any deck cares about an opponent having card advantage. You may be thinking of old school mill decks that needed to have other resources to really keep pace with decks to overcome their lack of direct offense. This mill deck doesn't require as much because it deals directly with decking your opponent as quickly as possible...an opponent without any cards to draw is not an opponent, they're defeated.

Edemis wrote:
"I've looked over Glimpse versus Wrath and StP. In any deck that needs time whatsoever, Wrath wins. You can make it three color to add Glimpse if you want... but white is needed, or you autolose to Goblins (or Domain Zoo if you insist that Dark Ritual is extended-legal...). Mill isn't that fastest win condition; it's about long term advantage, not playing like a really bad burn deck."

You obviously only skimmed over a few instances with this comparrison. Not only is Glimpse quicker, but paired with twincast, it makes an otherwise 8 cost for up to 40 cards milled into a possible 16 mana with up to 80 cards mileld. Not to mention the fact that The Sticks could fuel these even further by reproducing the Glimpses effects or even Twincast's.

In addition, I'm not entirely sure you get the whole Trauma/Haunt combo??? if you do, I apologize.

Edemis wrote:
"And, yes, I understand what mill is. Mill is a deck centered around decking your opponent. Which, no matter what method you do it, takes time. Time you need to have. Time that UB doesn't give you. You need to slow the pace of the game down to a point where you have the oppurtunity to play these spells and gain your advantage. Because, to deck your method, you would need 4 Glimpses and a Wheel and Deal, or 5 Glimpses(About). You need time to set up, get those cards, find the mana to play them. That take quite a bit of time, since every time you play a mill spell, you lose tempo. So you need to gain tempo, tempo enough to play all of those spells and come out smiling. Tempo this deck doesn't give you. And the only close to viable strategy I've seen for mill is to play several cards that will mill without your help, and then play the rest of the game like a control deck, exacerbating your opponents problems every so often. You need to be able to deal with your opponents threats at all times, or your dead. And a dead player doesn't do much milling. One thing to remember is that, in order to mill, you opponent only needs to have 1(or 2, depending on the play order) card less in his deck than you do. If you can guarantee that, then you win. So you need to play long term cards; one pop done cards like Glimpse lose you the game unless you can back them up with cards that help over time. That's the reason you never see, and never will see, any burn decks in any top 8. Period. (For the record, creatures do count as long term advantage cards. So close, but not quite.)"

Let's see...

Round 1 - Island
Round 2 - Swamp...

There are a number of things that I can do with only 2 mana. Cast Lurking Informant to start small milling next round. I can delay until my opponent's turn to Remand whatever it is being cast. I can cast a Cutpurse for early discard (a sort of milling effect) or use him as a chump blocker. Or I can cast Glimpse...which would bring my opponent's deck size to 42??? on round 2??? how is that piss poor mill???

Let's just go with that then. Let's say I cast Glimpse on round 2.

Round 3 - Island...

Now I have another number of things I can do. I can still do all of the above, but in addition, I can still delay to cast Remand or Twincast (in case I'd be taking burn, I can fire back).

So lets do that, we'll wait on our opponent.

My opponent summons some ungodly cheap creature that's a 6/6 (whatever). So I cast Remand and put it back into his hand while I dra a card.

Round 4 - Polluted Delta... I pay 1 life and put a Swamp into play.

I cast Glimpse + Twincast and now my opponent is at 21 cards in his deck. Remember, this is only round 4!

Round 5 - Island, I cast Wheel and Deal and now my opponent only has 13 cards in his deck. Done.

Round 6 - Swamp... I cast Haunting Echoes...well...that pretty much sums it up, game over.

Now, I understand that this won't always happen but the cards are consistent enough to make up this kind of scenario more often than not. Besides, no deck is going to win 100% of the time anyway.
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6/1/2007

Edemis
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Any deck cares about an opponent having card advantage. You may be thinking of old school mill decks that needed to have other resources to really keep pace with decks to overcome their lack of direct offense. This mill deck doesn't require as much because it deals directly with decking your opponent as quickly as possible...an opponent without any cards to draw is not an opponent, they're defeated.
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Any deck needs resources to keep pace with other decks. Otherwise you lose. I'm not saying you need offense, I'm saying you need cards that give you tempo. I see, quite literally, none in this deck. I'll explain more a bit further down. Also, Howling Mine is symmetrical. It's a very slight amount of card advantage for your opponent, and it's a whole crapload of potential card advantage for you, in any deck built correctly. If you need any more proof, look at a few Owling Mine lists. Not the versions from pre-TS standard. Modern ones from today's extended. Howling Mine, Kami of the Cresent Moon, and Skyscribing; they benefit both of you, at a slight cost to you, but you always get the better end of the deal. It's not quite a overt here as it is there, but you do always get the better end of the deal, barring obscure circumstances with artifact-hate, which shouldn't be in most Extended decks in great quantities, and those which have it should not be siding it in for a Howling Mine. It's not extremely disadvantageous to you to start off, and you always come out smiling in the right build.
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You obviously only skimmed over a few instances with this comparrison. Not only is Glimpse quicker, but paired with twincast, it makes an otherwise 8 cost for up to 40 cards milled into a possible 16 mana with up to 80 cards mileld. Not to mention the fact that The Sticks could fuel these even further by reproducing the Glimpses effects or even Twincast's.

In addition, I'm not entirely sure you get the whole Trauma/Haunt combo??? if you do, I apologize.
---------------------------------------
I've put the UW vs. UB through extensive testing. I'm pretty sure it's better; I haven't really tried mill in extended, but in Legacy there's no contest. You get a stronger control build, and you get Fish elements. It's like saying 4 color medley Hulkflash is better than the monoblue one because you have speed over strog control elements. Total BS. I've argued against people on this point as well; guess what? Which one made it to day 2 and won Columbus? Which one didn't even qualify for said PT? Also, how often will you realistically mill 40? That's about as easy as getting a turn one win with Narcobridge or Dragonstorm; it's pretty damn near impossible. Also, Glimpse can't go on Scepter, and I can't say Twincast is exactly amazing on it...

And yes, I understand the Traumatize/Haunting Echoes combo. I also understand that double 5 CC card combos suck, especially with the closest things to card draw you have in this deck as Cutpurses and Remands. I hear 20 land manabases with 4 Fetches don't do the best to support those either, with no acceleration in the entire deck. A single Remand or Counterspell hoses the whole thing, if you're even alive when you get to 5 mana.
-------------------------------------
Let's see...

Round 1 - Island
Round 2 - Swamp...

There are a number of things that I can do with only 2 mana. Cast Lurking Informant to start small milling next round. I can delay until my opponent's turn to Remand whatever it is being cast. I can cast a Cutpurse for early discard (a sort of milling effect) or use him as a chump blocker. Or I can cast Glimpse...which would bring my opponent's deck size to 42??? on round 2??? how is that piss poor mill???

Let's just go with that then. Let's say I cast Glimpse on round 2.

Round 3 - Island...

Now I have another number of things I can do. I can still do all of the above, but in addition, I can still delay to cast Remand or Twincast (in case I'd be taking burn, I can fire back).

So lets do that, we'll wait on our opponent.

My opponent summons some ungodly cheap creature that's a 6/6 (whatever). So I cast Remand and put it back into his hand while I dra a card.

Round 4 - Polluted Delta... I pay 1 life and put a Swamp into play.

I cast Glimpse + Twincast and now my opponent is at 21 cards in his deck. Remember, this is only round 4!

Round 5 - Island, I cast Wheel and Deal and now my opponent only has 13 cards in his deck. Done.

Round 6 - Swamp... I cast Haunting Echoes...well...that pretty much sums it up, game over.

Now, I understand that this won't always happen but the cards are consistent enough to make up this kind of scenario more often than not. Besides, no deck is going to win 100% of the time anyway.
---------------------------------
Let's see...
Turn one-
Fetch, crack it, get Stomping Grounds, Kird Ape
Turn 2-
(Fetch, crack it, if needed)Hallowed Fountain/Temple Garden, Boros Swiftblade, swing for 2 with the Ape(17, since I'm going to assume that you cracked at least one fetch)
Turn 3-
Last land needed to assemble domain through some method, Gaea's Might, Tribal Flames, GG

Even if you help back mana for a Remand, you wouldn't live past turn 4. If you Glimpsed and insisted on your strategy as a bad burn deck, you would have lost. That's consistent enough to win 2 GPs in a row. Can you claim the same for your deck? If this was TEPS, you would have lost. Hell, if this was Sunny Side Up, you would have lost. I don't even want to think what would happen versus Ichorid, where they WANT you to mill them and have Therapy for your echoes. And any other potential threat you may have. And is STILL fast enough to kill you turn 4-5. Where you had to wait until turn 6 to do significant damage... at least add Signets. And no, I do not count losing when they had 13, or whatever, card in they library a personal victory.

Rather, if you went like this... (against the same moveset as above)
Turn one-
Chrome Mox, pitching something random, Land, Mesmeric Orb/Howling Mine
Turn two-
Land, one more artifact/Familiar/cost reducer/whatever. Hell, if you want to cast Glimpse, you can pull it off now if you want. If you want it that badly, then you CAN go UWB, but W is a must. Condemn as they attack, or Unsummon, or, just take the damage.
Turn three-
You can Wrath now, if you chose not to kill their creature. Or you can play a cost reducer and let your Mesmeric Orb/future minor mill/whatever do it's job as you play the rest of the game as a control or fish deck. Play it out slowly and aim for the small advantage where you can get them. If need be, you can Ghostly Prison now too, and hopefully disrupt their pump. You should have at least 1 Condemn in hand by now. If not, you can use the Think Twice or Deep Analysis you could have milled to try and dig for one... If the two cards you're getting a turn haven't already given you everything you need.
-----------------------------------
See how many more options you have? The game is a lot less linear, you can respond to their threats in time, and push for card advantage in small ways whenever you have the oppurtunity. Your game becomes a lot more obtuse, and you have a very reactive and solid control deck that may only need to mill near the end to win you the game in case plan A goes wrong. That's good mill. The one you were playing in your 6 turn WTFBBQ game IS what we would call "piss poor" in a world in which we try to win our games...

You also have a lot more consistency, because Howling Mine allowed you to find more cards, and thus answers, while you're manacurve was a lot smaller and smoother, more like Gro's so you could play out your cards and STILL respond. That's CRUCIAL.

Also, after that turn 3, you could easily find some more powerful cards and responses, because you should have had some decent flashback cards in the grave, and were getting 2 cards a turn instead on one. I could easily find more cards to help my situation and exacerbate my opponents. I don't care how many extra cards he gets; as long as I can deal with his key cards and blanket wipe his others, I'm fine. What can he, the aggro player, do when I have 1, or even 2, Prisons on the board? At that point, you'd be praying for a solution. UW, or even UWB, does more than just pray; it goes and finds one. There's a huge difference. That's also assuming you didn't draw more Moxes, which would have sped you up even more. Also notice, with a single Sunscape or Nightscape Familiar, all of your counterspells cost one, and there's no card, not even flashback, that costs more than 2, so you always have mana open, even with just a few lands. That's what we would call "good" mill, if there is such a thing. At worst, you could finish up with Tog or Grunt in either of those builds.

As another note, White also lets you turn your deck into a kind of fish, which pushes for mill where it can while putting up pressure on the board; it lets you control the game, and gives you plentiful tools to launch a two-pronged attack. When you opponent is trying to deal with what your putting on him on the board, he tends not to notice what's happening beneath his nose, and you can use that to your advantage. Being able to support multiple Jotun Grunts is always nice, and you get a few more options for your mill cards as targeting yourself to fuel the aforementioned grunts or digging for Flashback cards. Mill was never meant to be a directly focused strategy. It, like Hulk Flash, was always meant to be diluted among other strategies as a supporting factor.

While no deck will ever win 100% of the time, it's your job as a builder to give it the best chance possible, and make it as near to that figure as possible. This is nowhere near a refined build; work to make it such.

6/1/2007

kz.carlton duvall
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edemis, whether you are right or not, you may be, (im not that competitive,) just stop...because both of you have been arguing for about 2 pages now, and neither of you ahve convinced each other...so theres no point in trying...he will most liekley not change his deck, and you will most likely not believe that UB is better than UWB, so just let other people comment man
kz. AsS P!rates!`<(emoticon)>

6/1/2007

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edemis, whether you are right or not, you may be, (im not that competitive,) just stop...because both of you have been arguing for about 2 pages now, and neither of you ahve convinced each other...so theres no point in trying...he will most liekley not change his deck, and you will most likely not believe that UB is better than UWB, so just let other people comment man
---------------------------------
I'll probably stop now; I'm not one to admit defeat, and I always try to get my point across. Maybe one or two, but I'll try to keep them short. Though I think my comments are more substantial than the usual;

"Awesome deck man. Despite several glaring flaws, it's amazing! 10/10!"

6/2/2007

Edemis
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I guess you decided to listen to me on the Mines. I still don't see why you drop black completely now. I'm trying to keep this short, so I'll be brief. Look at what black gives you.

Echoes (You still caught up on your 10 mana combo?)
Glimpse (Okay. If you really want it that badly, you can run it. But it's not worth it at less than 4, and you can easily support the 1 B with the fetchlands you have, and more you could add. I know you have money. Use it to your advantage.)
Nightscape Familiar (Nothing white can't give you. I even like the white one better, since it can actually block versus aggro with its 0/3 body; it waylayed Lackey more than I can count for Legacy... It's also more fragile. You have better things to be doing than regenerating it for 2; you give you 2 counters, a Think Twice, Multiple Analysises, an artifact... Need I say more?)
Lurking Informant (WTF? Slow as hell, expensive. Why is this even in here in the first place?)
Coffers, Urborg (Coffers is overdoing it, as you don't need quite that much mana. Urborg you can do in UWB just as easily)
Potential Transmutes (Most of the good ones are mono-blue, and the ones than need black can be easily supported by duals. Again, you have money (I think you have most of the fetches and duals anyways...). Use it.)

What white gives you;
Condemn (Helps your aggro matchup drastically; more than you can believe. And that's your worst matchup.)
Ghostly Prison (Close to a 3 mana Wrath, easily droppable turn 2 with a Mox. Need I say more? I actually ended up cutting the Wraths in my Legacy build because Propaganda was that much better, and costed less. It got reduced because it was blue, but Prison is close enough.)
Sunscape Familiar (Reducer, amazing turn 1 versus aggro, much more stable. I'm happy to have four, always. Nightscape looks good on paper, but this is much better in testing, pretty much every game.)
Wrath (Old WOG himself. May be overdoing it, but you always have the option.)
Absorb (Not amazing, but it's okay, and it helps your Aggro matchup. It's fully acceptable.)
Jotun Grunt (Helps your aggro matchup a bit, gives you a threat on the board. You stop milling once you're graveyard is done, which can take a while with a Mesmeric Orb on the board...)
Court Hussar (If you have room for it, it makes your aggro matchup even better. Usually boarded if you can find space. Probably not but worth a mention.)
Decree of Justice (You can pull a few out of board for an alternate win condition. Probably not over the Grunt, but it was a slight mainstay before CS was printed...)

Also, cards in maindeck that are excess and should be mentioned;
Traumatize (Worthless. Worth less and less as the game goes on, and Echoes is pretty devastating in deck even without it. Just excess. Not that Echoes is good enough to run, but...)
Twincast (Reactive. Extra mana should be used for counters, not winning more.)
Scalplexis (S...l...o...w... 5 CC is not worth the body or the affect. Mesmeric Orb usually ends up decking more, finds Analyses, finds Think Twices, fuels your Grunts, fuels your Togs... I don't really need to say more, do I?)
Kami of the Cresent Moon (Maybe you couldn't find your fourth Howling Mine? I dunno. I'd run Howling Mine over this since it doesn't get reduced anyways, and Mine is more flexible and less vulnerable. White gives you enough for the aggro matchup so you don't need to resort the jank like this.)
Lurking Infomant (We went over this. It's retarded)
Stormscape Familiar (Neither Black nor White needs to be reduced. Most of what you run should be cheap enough so this doesn't matter.)
24 Lands (You can cut a few. 21-23 is good.)
Wheel and Deal (I personally like this, but after all these years, I'm questioning whether or not it's what slowed my Legacy deck down enough to make it uncompetitive. Whatever though.)

Cards that should be added in greater quanities;
Howling Mine (Went over this)
Familiars (White one is much better; merits 4 copies)
Remand (Just good)

Cards that should be added;
Deep Analysis (Amazing with Orb. Breaks the symmetry like a knee-capping stick does glass)
Think Twice (Weaker Deep Analysis at instant speed. Not good, but worth a mention)
Chrome Mox (Amazing tempo)
Unsummon (Bad Condemn 2-3. Not good, but worth a mention if you can't find anything better)
Counterspells (For god's sake. I don't need to explain this.)
Mesmeric Orb (Amazing. I don't need to explain this.)
Tog? (Powerful card, broken with Orb. That's as far as I'm going to go.)
Cunning Wishes (Wishboard is pretty damn nice. Not completely dedicated, you understand. But lets you find answers in a deck that needs them badly. Lets you reach for things that help you own matchups. I hear Extirpate on Ichorid is pretty good. Might even give you a chance.)

This ended up being pretty long despite my efforts, but... I guess that's how I roll. I'm not sure I got everything, but this is the most I can pull off the top of my head.

6/2/2007

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Edemis,

I am not adding white to the deck. I am not removing blue or black either. I am considering your words carefully however. I thank you for the critiques at least. On the flip side of that, my deck is now watered down and not winning as much as it once was. I did take out the familiars because they made no difference at all in the games I played. I added the Cabal Rits and those seem to help me but are a little slow at turn 2. I am still very much open to ideas on how to make this a better U/B mill deck.
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6/2/2007

Edemis
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Add in Moxes with the Familiars. They're not perfect, but the white ones are amazing, as stated before, versus aggro. I still don't see why you refuse to run White. If you want me to suggest actual changes instead of just hinting... Here we go: -2 Scalplexis, -2 Specter, -2 Perplex, -3 Psychic Drain, -2 Lurking Informant, -3 Ritual, -2 Echoes, -2 Miasma, -2 Wheel and Deal. That's the weak cards down. -8 Swamp, -5 Island, -1 Cabal Coffers, -1 Urborg (Strip Mine, I guess. Whatever. Matter of opinion.). That's the manabase.

Adding white to the manabase:
+3 Flooded Strand (One is interchangeable with a Mox. It's a matter of preference. I personally like the Mox better, but this is slightly more consistent. It's a power vs. consistency thing.)
+3 Hallowed Fountain
+3 Watery Grave
+1 Godless Shrine (Interchangeable with 1 Grave; ie. -1 Grave, +1 Shrine is acceptable when you're having problems)
+3 Chrome Mox
+3 Plains (1 from the cards taken out before. Hallowed Fountain over one of these if aggro is light.)

Adding Quality Cards;
+4 Sunscape Familiar (You can take out one for another counter (Mind Lapse) if you want. It depends on how bad aggro is in your format, and how badly you would need more counters. It's a singleton board. You don't have much room for a dedicated one after the Wishes, but the board isn't that serious with only two Cunnings)
+2 Mesmeric Orb
+2 Deep Analysis
+2 Cunning Wish
+4 Condemn (Again, can be cut for a counter. Depends on how much aggro is in your format. Also, it's not bad as a Wish bullet)
+3 Ghostly Prison (Again, interchangeable for control elements or Wrath. Depends on the aggro meta. 2 is often find, with the rest in board.)
+2 Memory Lapse (-1 Remand, +1 Lapse if you want; it's usually hard, or almost so, since the Orb decks them before they can draw the spell again. 1 Board isn't bad, but 4 main is usually the way to go)

If you need more counters, Condescend is good with the Familiars, and a strong counter in itself. It's often a U, Force Spike, Scry 2, and can be more when you need it to be. It's good while you're developing (turn 2-3 or so), but Mana Leak is better after that. It depends on what you want. Either one is fine.

Before you start saying, I like how my UB list is, I want to keep it in theme, these are traditionally the colors for strong decking and control, I have combo here... Whatever. Give that list I gave you a spin; just because Dimir is UB doesn't mean that the best decking decks are in that color. I've never seen a successful decking deck WITHOUT white, since you just can't live long enough without it. Get in 4 Lapses if you can. It's diluted, but it's still powerful (Kind of like Legacy fish, only I cut the Dazes and FoWs that were in the original, for obvious reasons), and has a lot of synergy. If you find you have too many artifacts, drop a copy or two. I'm not entirely sure how my final Legacy build looked like (It's been years since I've played that monster), but I can recall quite a bit of it. I didn't manage to fit in everything, but I guess that might have been a result of the Glimpses. I'll post the white board a bit later if you're willing to give it a try. It will contain Wish targets, if you want to ask, or you can just make stuff up. Your board doesn't look like it really has much of a purpose now anyways. This way it's more than a place the stuff the cards that make up the final build.

Monster is used as an offensive term, by the way, since it can fall either way and it wasn't too clear.

6/2/2007

Edemis
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Since my other post was getting too long, if you're really determined to keep this UB, after testing the list I gave you before, mind you, at least add Moxen. Nightshades are kind of weak, but a 0/3, 1/3, or something to that effect with a beneficial effect is always amazing against any aggro; it save you a few point of damage at least, and occasionally save you the game (Turn 1 Sunscape saved my arse so many times in Legacy vs. Goblins. It stopped Lackey, forced them to go the Vial route, and gave me enough to to set up my Propagandas (Prisons in extended) and take control of the game. They literally had almost no answer to a Propaganda and a Sunscape, and couldn't push through. The times they could, a simple StP (Condemn) stopped them, and when I started wishing for tech, or slapped down Propaganda no. 2, they scooped and went onto game 2. I'm still not sold on why you want to keep it UB so badly. Maybe it's just I've had too many good experiences, but I still don't get why...). Spells like that give you the aforementioned tempo you need to set up properly. It's more evident in Legacy, but Extended is getting to a similar point as well, so... you should be able to see it without too much difficulty. 4 Mesmeric Orb is a must, since manaless decking is good for you, better with Familiars, and often nets you key Flashback cards which can put your deck over the top. I'm sure you must have noted the synergy with Mind Lapse in the previous post. Also, cut the Informants. For god's sake... I still don't see why you continue to run them. That, Psychic Drain, and all of your 5+ CC cards. Also, Hissing Miasma is too weak in practice. Maybe in Legacy, but in Extended a single creature can finish business, and any amount of damage is pushed over the top with burn. Life is a resource that you have in abundance; most players won't think twice about it when sending creatures into the red zone, if it'll help them win the game. Flashback cards are amazing with the Orb; I'm sure you can see why. Deep Analysis is the best of a good bunch. That's probably it for now, but if you want to glance over my previous posts (Yeah, I'm not sure I'd want to either), a lot of the Magic theory that I applied to white can, if you stretch is and reduce the power of each individual card, be applied to black if you really wanted to. I still think the list I gave you is perfectly agreeable, since the only reason I really see for black is Glimpse, and that list still has it, but... I guess if you wanted to that badly...

As for the SB, a Wishboard works wonders. Having individual answers to decks is more liberating that you know, since I've never seen you with one. It give this deck (as in Mill in general, all variants) so much more advantage, since it's all about answering cards and then going proactive with your mill in controlled quantities while still dominating and maintaining a strong game presence. Dr. Teeth is always happy to come out of board and make a good impression on that stall/side in Gaea's Blessing/can't deck for whatever reason player; You can easily remove 40+ cards if you time it correctly, and with another 7-9 from your hand... (Howling Mine) That's about 30 damage, with cards from your hands stalling until the breakthrough. You can Wish for bounce if you're having trouble, even. You want this deck to be dynamic and flexible. The key to a good mill deck is having a plan that changes with the opponent's. You don't generally want to go in with a "hard" strategy, like dropping Haunting Echoes for the win; play a soft one, like Mesmeric Orb, and then playing around your opponent, not him playing around you. Remember that with one Orb and one Familiar, or extemely controlled play, you can win given enough time. This probably won't be better in casual play, like if you're playing with your college or middle school buddies or group, but if you take a mill deck to a tournament, I can guarantee your that's the only strategy which will come close to working. I'm not entirely sure what you mean be competitive, but if you're serious about it and want to win a tourney or PT with this, you need to reform your mindset and give this deck a serious reworking. If you want, look at the Dampen Thought or Screeching Sliver limited lists; while not perfect, being a format with a lot less power level and a smaller deck, they can give you can idea of how decking decks need to work. Be proactive, but make sure nothing kills you and you never run out of fuel- that's Dampen Thought. Take control of the game, make sure your opponent is helpless, and then push for every bit of advantage you can in the race- that's Slivers. That's how a constructed decking deck should work; you have more cards to run and more cards to deck- a combination of those strategies is the only way to play.

6/2/2007

Edemis
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One more post. I hate how long these things end up getting; I guess it's my writing fetish at work. My final note is that I'll even load up my deck on Apprentice and prove to you that a reactive strategy is better than a proactive one. I'm not one to admit defeat, and I'm willing to spend my time to prove that my Magic theory is correct, whether the list is UB or UBW or UW. I'll edit a few goldfishes into here a bit later.

EDIT: Oh. I miscounted. I was four cards short of a complete list on my part; I got this when typing this thing into Apprentice. I'm thinking of what to add now. Edit it up later.
+1 Cunning Wish
+3 Mana Leak (Random. Try to think of something better later.)
------------------------------------------------------------------
Goldfish Number 1:
Starting 7: Mana Leak, Condemn, Remand, Glimpse the Unthinkable, Plains, Polluted Delta, Watery Grave- Okay starter I guess. It's worth keeping, but I consider sending it back to look for a Mox and some power cards. I keep it on the basis of Remand, however. Let's say I'm on the play.)
Turn 1:
Watery Grave tapped, go.
Turn 2:
Draw Cunning, Polluted Delta, go.
Crack the Delta (19), going fishing for an Island, Remand, draw Memory Lapse, back to me
Turn 3:
Draw Sunscape Familiar, drop the Plains, play it, go.
Mana Leak? Condemn? Whichever, back to me. Let's say the Leak.
Turn 4:
Draw Ghostly Prison, play Glimpse, holding the white up for Condemn, go
Condemn, doubt I take anything in the real game due to the counters being up, so still 19
Turn 5:
Draw Delta, think, play Delta, go.
He gets his attacks, whatever. It's a fish, so I'm not worrying too much. As a note, I can Wish for a Condemn and play it to screw him even more, or Wish for a counter to whatever he plays. However, I opt to use my wish to help me dig through my deck (Think Twice, whatever you want...), getting some draw spell or another, which I hold, giving me room to Memory Lapse and still have an uncracked Delta
-Not as perfect as the first few games I had, but passable. I could answer everything he had, deck him 10, which will inevitable pay off, and dig through my deck trying to find a Mesmeric Orb. Alternatively, I could have Wished for some potential win condition (Card making tokens? I dunno) and tried to go with that instead of plan A. Not the best example. but it's not a bad play. Frankly, I'd be happy to have the physical (board) opening I had with a control deck, if I didn't run out of counters, let alone this one.
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Goldfish Number 2:
Opening 7: Howling Mine, Sunscape Familiar, Cunning Wish, Glimpse the Unthinkable, Polluted Delta, Island (Definitely not bad. Again no Mox, which is disappointing since I'm running four, but the rest of the hand is easily passable, and I have a good amount of land. On the play again)
Turn 1:
Crack the Delta fishing for my Godless Shrine, which comes into play tapped (19)
Turn 2:
Draw Mox, Island, Sunscape Familiar, play Mox imprinting Glimpse (I see I have Orb and Howling, so I can either get another one if needed, but the Orb should easily be enough. No sense in not bluffing a counter; I have 10 in this deck, it's not that common that I don't have one.)
Turn 3:
Draw Flooded Strand, play it, tap my Mox and Shrine to play Howling Mine, still playing on the pretense of holding a counter (I know I'm against a fish. Good habits for regular play though...
EOT crack the Strand searching for a basic of choice (Say plains), Cunning Wish, actually getting that counter, or a Think Twice, whatever.
-A strong start; I have a developed manabase, my two key cards, in hand, the potential to get 2 cards a turn, and whatever I wished for with Cunning. Not bad at all.
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Goldfish Number 3:
Deep Analysis, Glimpse the Unthinkable, Cunning Wish, Mesmeric Orb, Chrome Mox, Polluted Delta, Polluted Delta (Finally the Mox shows up. I hesitantly keep this hand, since it is rather weak. I do see 3 lands, a crap card to feed the Mox, a first turn Artifact into a second turn Wish. Not too good of a hand, but since I mull reservedly, I keep it. Say I'm on the draw now.)
Turn 1:
Draw Watery Grave, play it untapped, feed the Analysis to the Mox, tap both to drop the Orb
Turn 2:
Draw Fountain, whine about manaflood, play a Delta, tap the Mox and the Island to Glimpse (Nothing better to do)
Turn 3:
Condemn, Cunning Wish, Lands, wrap this game up. I don't really have the time to continue with this, but compared to the games you showed me of this as an example... I'd say this is much more consistent and powerful. Just venturing here... If you were curious, the top 10 cards were Remand, Howling Mine, Memory Lapse, Plains, Polluted Delta, Deep Analysis, Mesmeric Orb, Polluted Delta, Memory Lapse, Condemn. The ones you would have drawm probably would have been Remand, Howling Mine, Mesmeric Orb, Polluted Delta, Memory Lapse. Everything else would have been decked. That's some excellent topdecking, giving me some counters and even more cards to work with. The Glimpse declares this game is almost definitely going to finish in my favor.
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That's probably the last goldfish. But if you could see, I never ran out of options. This build is still slightly rough, but I always had something, or could Wish for something to get it. Look at these, which are actual games, and compare them do your own. Maybe this works for UB as well, but check this out. At least give it a spin. These were smooth, powerful, and were excellent starts to a game. Also notice how each of them was different. Look at them, and compare. I doubt your current deck could pull of anything near any of these. If you're curious, here's the list I ran;

2 Island
3 Mana Leak
3 Cunning Wish
2 Deep Analysis
4 Howling Mine
4 Mesmeric Orb
4 Sunscape Familiar
4 Glimpse the Unthinkable
4 Memory Lapse
3 Remand
3 Ghostly Prison
3 Condemn
1 Godless Shrine
4 Chrome Mox
2 Plains
4 Hallowed Fountain
3 Watery Grave
4 Polluted Delta
3 Flooded Strand

Wishboard:
1 Condemn
1 Absorb
1 Think Twice
1 Judge Unworthy?
1 Mana Leak
1 Trickbind/Stifle
1 Disrupt?
8 Whatever- I haven't ironed out the board that far yet. Not much of a reason to, since I'm pretty sure all of my work an arguments are
go to waste anyways. That's not going to stop me from making them, though.
------------------------------------------------------------------
Congratulations if you managed to sit through all of my poor typing. If you actually read all of that, you have my congratulations. I didn't think anyone would; you especially, with your determination to push UB through.

6/3/2007

Arkblade
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You did notice that I said I'm NOT going to be adding white or droppinf blue/black right? =P
http://www.skullcrafts.com

6/3/2007

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If you're going B/U creatureless, you should run 4 Damnations, maybe even some Mutilates. Tolaria West is great tech with Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth, or Moxen, etc..
Cabal Coffers are only worth it if you play Phsychic Drain, in which case, it would make the deck slower, and the need for Urborg would be a lot higher. Otherwise Psychic Drain is a tad weak imho, since it usually can only be effectively played for around 4-5, when you should be keeping mana open for the opponents turn.

Wouldn't Isochron be fairly effective in this deck?

It's funny that if Mill ever became truly competitive (which it sadly isn't right now), that Gaea's Blessing is both Standard and Extended legal right now... =)
"Any mogg will tell you there's nothing more nauseating than the smell of cute."

6/3/2007

Edemis
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You did notice that I said I'm NOT going to be adding white or droppinf blue/black right? =P
---------------------------------------------------
Call it immature, but I don't like to lose. I think I'm going to be testing this now just to prove you wrong. :P
---------------------------------------------------
If you're going B/U creatureless, you should run 4 Damnations, maybe even some Mutilates. Tolaria West is great tech with Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth, or Moxen, etc..
Cabal Coffers are only worth it if you play Phsychic Drain, in which case, it would make the deck slower, and the need for Urborg would be a lot higher. Otherwise Psychic Drain is a tad weak imho, since it usually can only be effectively played for around 4-5, when you should be keeping mana open for the opponents turn.

Wouldn't Isochron be fairly effective in this deck?

It's funny that if Mill ever became truly competitive (which it sadly isn't right now), that Gaea's Blessing is both Standard and Extended legal right now... =)

-----------------------------------------------------
Going creatureless has more disadvantages than Damnation. I dunno, I guess. Damnation is kind of slow without Familiars, which defeats the purpose of them.

Mill will never be competitive. It's way too slow. Maybe in Legacy, but... There's not much hope for Extended.

6/3/2007

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As a note... if you read them, a lot of my suggestions could be incorporated into a UB list, and I made a post making suggestions for pure UB, if you were just skimming or assuming.

6/4/2007

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Deep Analysis>Think Twice. Life being of not too large of a consequence, 2 mana for 2 cards is easily better than 2 for one; the main difference is that one is at instance speed. Think Twice is more of a Cunning Wish target; it's only ever good as 3 for 2 at instant speed, and most of the time you get it when you don't want it.

Not matter how you see it, artifact mana or a Familiar is better than Ritual. There's nothing you're in a hurry to do turn 3. I really don't see why, especially since you can't to nearly anything with BBB.

A wishboard is good. This is the one I'm running (made up on the spot) for the UWB build I made, and should be the general infrastructure of one;
Absorb
Undermine (Can be versus Absorb; Hero's Demise works great here if you're having problems. Cutting this entirely isn't bad either, though I figured you'd have room since you can't run White here.)
Condemn
Judge Unworthy
Orim's Chant (Stifle or Trickbind work here as well; Stifle has some advantages over this, but this helps versus Aggro, so it wins here)
Muddle the Mixture
Shred Memory
Think Twice (Versus Careful Consideration- selection versus advantage. Consideration usually is better, but I like this here. Read the Runes is pretty powerful here as well, but I don't think it's quite...)
Last Gasp (Darkblast or Lose Hope work too; metagame choice)
Quicken
Pulse of the Fields
Disenchant (Or Return to Dust if Colossus is giving you problems)
Perplex
(Two Psychatog, or cut the Perplex and 3 Jotun Grunt)
----------------------------------------------
Yes, I know it has white. I run white; it's still the best solution even if you don't want to add it- the board manupulation it gives you is superb. A lot of the cards have Blue and Black replacements, if you want them; like Chain of Vapor isn't that bad of a substitute for Disenchant, but it's obviously not nearly as powerful. You would also need Crypts here, since you can't run Prison.

And adding the Mines back isn't a bad idea, especially since you did some weird crap again. With the Wheel and Deal side, as you usually don't need it until near the end, those can go out of Cunnings. Dralnu is even slower than most of the cards you cut; It's only really good turn 7 to 8 in straight control, and this is anything but that. Twincasts are still weak; cut them for Relearns, so you at least have some more selection, and don't need to devote as much.

Memory Lapse isn't not a bad card in itself, and DOES have some amazing synergy with Orb, in case you missed that the first time. >Delay and Remand, and Leak>Delay. This is by no means a fast deck; Delay usually equates to card disadvantage.

Finally, have you EVER manage to Psychic Drain for more than 3? 4? I don't see why you keep putting them back in; they suck, and are the slowest of any card still in the deck. I'd rather run Dampen Thought over it, and this deck doesn't even have any other Arcane cards.

That's all I see now. More can probably be found in my other posts, when I was slightly more awake.

6/4/2007

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Okay, with the Wishboard setup, I can be very very nasty when I get to wishing. The ability to Brain Freeze on a moment's notice is very effective. It's a bit slower than I wanted, but I don't know of any blue mana acceleration to use...possibly an artifact? Not to mention the fact that with Extirpate, I can lobotomize my opponent to keep the threats down to a minimum. Mana Short fuels the Orbs if I'm not mistaken?

I haven't played this yet, so that's why I'm asking for advice.

I think what I have here is pretty good, it's definitely different, but maybe you guys can see something I'm not able to???

Thanks.
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6/4/2007

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I think what I have here is pretty good, it's definitely different, but maybe you guys can see something I'm not able to???
----------------------------------------------------------
Adding white. :P.

Other than that, yes, Mana Short fuels the Orbs. But I think copies in 4s is a bit too much. The transmute box is pretty strong as well; the Shred usually fixed your Ichorid matchup to some extent, and it goes fishing for an artifact during others. Perplex in the board is pretty strong; lets you cut down the Psychatogs to 2, since four is overkilling it, even in side. They're supposed to be an alternate win condition, not even a main plan. I don't even think having them anywhere but side is even intelligent.

Use the wishboard I gave you; it gives you solutions to most things you need them for. Of course, the removal a white DOES change some things, but I don't think that they're major.

Deep Analyses mainboard are huge. Why did you cut them? Especially since you refuse to drop Twincast for Relearn, so they're even better.

As for the accelarant, a Signet or Talisman should do the trick. Usually I use the Familiar, since the white one is so amazing due to it's large butt, but I don't think that's quite so applicable with this deck. As your build nears what my UWB build is, throw them (Black only) back in and test for a while. A lot of my suggestions begin to make a lot more sense when everything costs one less; that's more or less the basis of why I tried to venture a mill deck into competitive. The efficiency and synergy of it was pretty amazing. I could keep on going, and going, and going, and my opponent never had a threat I didn't have a quick answer for.

Still say you should give my list a try. I may look kind of quirky, but I'm pretty sure that's the best you can do if you want to run Glimpse.

6/7/2007

drewness!
Acolyte
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Nice deck...white wouldn't hurt...but it's not necessary. The only card I think would work well in here is Accumulated Knowledge. It will work well with the Orb (which i love in this deck) I give it a 9!
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