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I am a fan of block-specific mechanics because I think Wizards pushes these mechanics to the players to boost flavor, encourage out-of-the-box thinking, and to discover interactions previously unnoticed.
When these cards were spoiled independently, people viewed them differently and used them differently.
Marionette Master found a found in a UB GPG deck that used Metalwork Colossus and cheap artifacts to sacrifice triggered an eternalized 7/7 Marionette Master thanks to GPG.
On the other hand, Brass’s Bounty was immediately seen as a bulk rare people hoped not to get during their prerelease.
There is a reason why they are costed next to each other – because you can win the game simply by casting them one after another. If you cast Marionette Master with natural lands, it would mean you had 6 lands to cast it and get a minimum of 6 treasures off of Brass’s Bounty which is still enough to deal 24 damage even if Marionette is just a 4/6.
These 2 cards will be the focus of today’s dech tech!
Treasure Map is by far the best and cheapest way to get treasure tokens early. It is also very useful in making sure we draw our lands and our spells early and keep the game under control.
Spell Swindle has been played along side Revel in Riches but I disagree with using Revel as a win condition because it’s easy to play around. If the opponent refuses to cast spells and deprive the ‘swindler’ from casting this, then the Revel in Riches is a dead card on the battlefield.
To back up Spell Swindle we need to play early counter magic to make sure we don’t get ran over. Essence Scatter is becoming more relevant now than Negate since most decks now are creature heavy. Metallic Rebuke is often cast for 2 with the abundance of artifacts we have in play. Supreme Will is our catch all and our way to dig up our win condition.
Fatal Push will help us get to turn 3-4 until our mana is enough to deprive our opponent of their game plan. Battle at the Bridge on the other hand is our only way to get rid of indestructible gods. With Rampaging Ferocidon gone, we can definitely gain back a good amount of life from this.
Vraska’s Contempt definitely takes some slot because its the premier removal spell available in standard today. It takes down any problematic creature or planeswalker forever and gains you life.
Tezzeret never found a good home but we will splash at least 1 copy in our deck because of his synergy with our strategy. He creatures artifacts we can sacrifice to trigger Marionette Master, ramps us to get to Marionette a turn earlier, and his -2 ability if calculated well can make Marionette Master’s power bigger without killer her. Remember that Tezzeret pluses power and minuses toughness, with a 4/6 Marionette Master, she can take a +5/-5 and reach 9 power which would then require you to sacrifice less artifacts to deal lethal damage.
I had debated if Glimmer of Genius was better than Pirate’s Pillage in this deck and I think it is most of the time, however I am seeing less control decks nowadays and the risk of having Pirate’s Pillage countered on game 1 is slim. Once resolved, getting 2 treasures off of it accelerates us to our late game much faster. Having 5 lands and 2 treasures (given we didn’t flip a Treasure Map yet) ramps us to a Brass’s Bounty on turn 5. At any point that we resolve a Marionette Master, it’s game over. We will still play Glimmer don’t get me wrong, but more Pirate’s Pillage.
Every control/combo deck needs a reset button and we don’t have the best in our colors but Bontu’s Last Reckoning is too cheap not to play. I can argue that Hour of Devastation can work as our Fumigate but I am not keen on playing double red, we will only splash red for Pirate’s Pillage and Brass’s Bounty.
If our plan A does not work out, The Scarab God is the perfect plan B to get our plan A back online!
How does the 60 cards look like now? scroll down!
3 Marionette Master
2 The Scarab God
4 Treasure Map
1 Tezzeret, the Schemer
4 Fatal Push
2 Battle at the Bridge
2 Essence Scatter
2 Metallic Rebuke
4 Supreme Will
3 Pirate’s Pillage
2 Glimmer of Genius
3 Vraska’s Contempt
2 Spell Swindle
2 Brass’s Bounty
4 Aether Hub
4 Drowned Catacomb
4 Fetid Pools
2 Field of Ruins
2 Dragonskull Summit
2 Lost Legacy
4 Trespasser’s Curse
As a rogue deck builder, the strategy is to keep your strengths hidden from your opponent and use their meta-approach to your advantage.
The top 4 decks we see dominating the new standard are Tokens, Snake, GPG and various Energy variants.
Duress, Dispossess and Lost Legacy is still the best counter against fellow combo decks like Tokens, GPG and even Approach decks if they remain common on your local meta.
Trespasser’s Curse’s application goes beyond token decks. It can also sided in with decks that run 24-28 creatures in their decks like Tokens, BG Explore, Snake, RG Monster, Merfolks and Vampires. Having 2 copies is painful enough for opponents to keep putting creatures into play which you can just sweep or take out 1-for-1. It also extends our life totals enough to buy us the time to set up our combo win.
Negate provides more back up against counter wars but it’s also a way to answer decks that plan to sideboard into a mid range deck and use Planeswalkers, enchantments or artifacts to win the game.
With enough play testing and tweaks, I think this deck shows promise as an under the radar deck for FNMs. It has the cards to beat gauntlets in today’s standard but funky enough to catch your opponent off guard.
Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below!
See you back soon!