After my previous 2 announcements, I’m sure everyone is excited to see what’s in store for The Forbidden Alchemy in 2019 and I’m not gonna lie, I’m very excited as well. As Julio and Nick both shared, 2019 is the year of Filipino-MTG content. I am very happy in the direction we’re taking. Still in the pipeline of ideas is getting some professional Magic players in here as well to share a stories of their life beyond the cardboard and dices.
If you’re wondering what today’s title is about, it’s about a pet deck I’m trying out in Arena and so far it’s winning 50% of its matches in Bo1 and around 60% in Bo3. This is a rough idea I’m working on but I want to share it with everyone in case you guys have ideas to improve it.
Connive // Concoct is by far the least used split card from the Guilds of Ravnica set and probably for good reasons. It’s one of the most expensive split card to use, and the yields are less than impressive. Gaining control of an Adanto Vanguard on your 4h turn means you probably have taken 3-6 damage from it (or more if you played an untapped shockland to cast Connive). Concoct is a slightly improved Rise from the Grave it that didn’t see any play whatsoever outside Limited. So why focus on this card in today’s article?
It’s because we got a huge 8-mana Pig that transforms your entire board into a kill squad for a turn, and sometimes swinging in with a bunch of 3/3s and 5/5s with trample should be enough to close the game. Alone it’s a 7/7 Vigilant, Trampling, Haste creature which returns your mana investment immediately, but its ETB ability is crazy if you have enough boardstate to swing with.
A glass cannon shell which uses End-Raze Forerunners is popping up in the web but upon testing in Arena, it’s very bad against very fast decks like mono blue, Wet Weenies, and burn. Those match-ups are like watching your deck get murdered by Leonidas and his brave 300.
So I converted the glass cannon shell into a creature-heavy shell with a decent curve and still have that surprise turn 4-5 Craterhoof “THIS IS SPARTAAA” finish in the deck and I arrived with this list.
In this shell, we are given two ways to use the pig.
My recommended way of using End-Raze Forerunners is to at least have ‘some’ board presence. Ideally the deck has creatures you can play at each curve and if they survive long enough, landing a pig on turn 5 with Concoct should give you at least 15 power you can swing with to attempt at closing the game out of nowhere.
Having some plays early also helps us stay alive against fast decks. They trade well against low-to-the-ground aggressors and they buy us time to play our 5 and 6 drops naturally even without the reanimators.
The other way of winning with the pig is to take advantage of slow starts or slow decks that need time to set up.
We can also attempt to dump the pig into the graveyard with Chart a Course and Discovery // Dispersal then reanimate it with Concoct to swing in for 7, then cast Quasiduplicate on it to create a 7/7 token and pump the original to 9/9 to deal 16 damage and win that way. It works sometimes and when it does, stealing the game is like stealing candy from a baby.
We can also play the long game since we have our muscles spread across the curve all the way up to 7. They also have good benefits if cheated into play early against some specific decks.
The sideboard plan is also very flexible and this is what I’ve been using in Bo3 matches.
With 10 explorers in the deck, siding in Wildgrowth Walkers and taking out some number of Dream Eater and Eldest Reborn improves our match-up against burn, mono red, weenies and mono blue significantly.
Thought Erase, Negate are good answers to Reclamation decks and Planeswalkers, while Carnage Tyrant remains our silver bullet against heavy control decks.
And while Nexus of Fate runs free to decimate the unprepared meta, Unmoored Ego will surely carry its weight in gold in making sure no one plays Solitaire on you.
That’s it for now! Do look forward to the debut articles that Nick and Julio will be posting soon! Till then, we hope to see you back here more often!