October Mid Range Type 1 Breakdown and Unsolicited Commentary

This fall/winter season is a time that’s typically more laid back. There is no Gencon or Origins on the horizon, Waterbury may happen all of once, and there’s no telling what StarCityGames.com will decide to do. While there will be far fewer large scale tournaments, there will be plenty of mid-sized tournaments, which is where I get to stick my tongue out at Philip Stanton and thump my own chest… that is, of course, assuming that you creeps give me Top 8 lists!


Karlsruhe (40) 10/02/04

1) 4cControl (with Green over White)

2) Food Chain Goblins

3) Tendrils

4) Control Slaver

5) 4cControl (4 scepters)

6) Goblins

7) Goblins

8) Stax

Hadley (41) 10/09/04

1) Belcher

2) Artifact Reanimator

3) Tendrils

4) Control Titan

5) Affinity

6) Workshop Aggro

7) BrokenCards.dec

8) MonoU Belcher

Denmark (42) 10/10/04

1) Gay/R

2) Tog

3) MonoU

4) Stax

5) Workshop Aggro

6) Stax

7) Tendrils

8) Sligh

Eindhoven (36) 10/24/04

1) Control-Titan

2) Stax

3) Stax

4) Oath

5) Mono-Blue

6) Stax

7) 4cControl

8) Dragon

Eindhoven (43) 10/24/04

1) Stax

2) 4cControl

3) Stax

4) Stax

5-8) Tendrils

5-8) 4cControl

5-8) UG Madness

5-8) UR Scepter-control

Once again it’s time for me to complain. Here, we have one New England tournament, four European tournaments, and zero of anything else. I know New England can do better, but at least they are giving me some numbers. In actuality, I should get at least three from New England, considering there is at least on tournament every weekend. As for other places, the Midwest often dips below or hovers above my range of sight, California is usually too low, and I have no idea what Canada’s excuse is. Feed me T8’s!

Also, of note that this is probably the worst time for Type One tournament organizers, as we have come off from our normally successful summer season, right into the holidays. If you see tournament attendance drop, remember that most Type One players have to travel longer to play than most other players. We don’t have real FNM’s, wide-spread popularity, or huge money tournaments to keep the attendance as high as it will get during the summer.

This fall/winter season is a time that’s typically more laid back. There is no Gencon or Origins on the horizon, Waterbury may happen all of once, and there’s no telling what StarCityGames.com will decide to do. While there will be far fewer large scale tournaments, there will be plenty of mid-sized tournaments, which is where I get to stick my tongue out at Philip Stanton and thump my own chest… that is, of course, assuming that you creeps give me Top 8 lists!






















Meandeck Titan




Workshop Aggro




Mono Blue




Control Slaver








Artifact Reanimator












Mono-Blue Belcher
























UG Madness




UR Scepter-Control




Why I love Stax

Stax a thing of beauty to behold. Just goldfishing it makes you giddy. If you’re accustomed to a control deck, the speed in which Stax can attain control over the game is just amazing. If you’re a combo player, you can’t help but he envious of the consistency Stax has in locking down the early game.

Because you run Mishra’s Workshop, the bulk of your deck is forced to be artifacts which brings another benefit of a low occurrence of color screw. In most hands, the color of a Mox is irrelevant to the first few turns.

To play it perfectly, it requires a bit of a brain, however…

Why I hate Stax

Playing Stax is like inviting your buddy over and making him watch you play Tetris. There’s absolutely no fun in it for anyone but yourself. The game is even painful to watch from an outsider’s point of view.

Also, Stax is the simplest deck to just destroy people with. Workshop-Trinisphere-go doesn’t exactly require any real finesse. The deck forces a control player to hold a Force of Will and even so, the deck is certainly capable of vomiting out a Welder on the same turn. It is 22.5% of the Top 8’s right now and I firmly believe that if Mishra’s Workshop cost $25 like it did three years ago, it would be back on the restricted list.

Stax’s application for this card is by far the more effective than that of Workshop aggro since it’s a lot easier to recover from a Mox-Workshop-Juggernaut than it is to recover from a Workshop-Tangle Wire. Both Workshop aggro and Stax have access to Trinisphere, which is ultimately what’s been earning the wins.

I hate Trinisphere because it’s allows the deck that can use it to effectively abuse the Time Walk effect. For example:

Stax drops Mishra’s Workshop (+2 extra turns for Stax) and Trinisphere (-2 turns for the non-Workshop playing opponent) on turn 1. This turn is a net total of a 4 turn advantage.

A typical non-combo Type One deck leads off with dropping a one-mana producing land and likely 1-2 accelerants. A typical example, using Control Slaver (CS):

CS drops a Volcanic Island and a Mox (+1 turn)

A typical combo Type One deck does quite a bit more. Using Meandeath as an example:

Meandeath drops a City of Brass, a Mox (+1 turn), tap the City for a Dark Ritual (+2 turns) or another artifact accelerant (+1-2 turns), then play some non-game ending spells in preparation.

Is what Stax can do fair? Yes, but in the history of Type One if something is really unfair, the bulk of people take advantage of the situation (4 Fact of Fiction in Mono-Blue and Keeper, 4 Gush in Gro-a-Tog and Gro variants, 4 Burning Wish in both Long.dec and German Combo-Control, 4 Land Tax in Parfait… Okay, I’m kidding on that last one).

However, this isn’t so easy.

I’ll say it and stick by it – Mishra’s Workshop is and always will be self-governing. Its dominance is restricted by its insane cost and rarity. In proxy environments, where the norm is 5 or 10 proxies, you have to own power to be able to use those proxy slots for Workshops.

Is the problem Trinisphere? Workshop? Both? Neither? We will probably not know until there is enough high-proxy events run to use as a data source.

4cControl is still going strong!

4cControl is maintaining its slot in the top 2, but this month is a little different. While 4cControl was the definitive dominant deck of the summer, it’s honestly not even close to the best deck choice right now (I know! This coming from me).

How is this deck still keeping afloat? People are drifting in all directions with it, that’s how. In Karlsruhe, a 4cControl deck placed first by taking out the white element for Green to support a Crucible of Worlds/Fastbond strategy. In that same tournament another 4cControl player went the Isochron Scepter and Fire / Ice route to sweep Goblins.

These two decks are far variations from the standard 4cControl builds so much that one could argue that only three 4cControl builds should be counted in the Top 8, while these would be in some obscure class of their own.

Bram Verhees ran with an idea that came from the Germbus development dungeon, 4cControl with Tinker, Darksteel Colossus, and Karn. While I initially scrapped the idea, the Germans took a liking to it and some made T8 appearances with it. Bram saw this list on Morphling.de and ran with it to make two T8 appearances with it.

For your own edification, here is part of my original post and thoughts on 4cControl with Tinker.

//NAME: 4ColorControl

// Mana

Flooded Strand

3 City of Brass

2 Tundra

2 Underground Sea

2 Volcanic Island

4 Wasteland

1 Island

1 Strip Mine

1 Library of Alexandria

1 Sol Ring

1 Black Lotus

1 Mox Jet

1 Mox Sapphire

1 Mox Ruby

1 Mox Pearl

1 Mox Emerald / Mana Crypt

// Counters

Force of Will

4 Mana Drain

// Search/Tutor

4 Brainstorm

3 Cunning Wish

1 Demonic Tutor

1 Tinker

// Draw

1 Ancestral Recall

1 Fact or Fiction

3 Skeletal Scrying

// Broken

1 Yawgmoth’s Will

1 Time Walk

1 Balance

1 Crucible of Worlds

// Removal

2 Swords to Plowshares

1 Fire / Ice

// D00ds

1 Karn, Silver Golem (or a Monkey)

Darksteel Colossus

2 Exalted Angel


Red Elemental Blast

3 Flametongue Kavu

2 Rack and Ruin

2 Crucible of Worlds

1 Disenchant

1 Vampiric Tutor

1 Swords to Plowshares

1 Blue Elemental Blast

1 Gush

I chose to try Karn out since he not only works well with Tinker, but he can win a lot faster than Shaman and can block a 7/x critter
(read: Titan) if need be. I really loved this guy when I tested him, though I really missed being able to cast Shaman turn 1 and stop a lot of the craziness in the format. I’m still on the fence with this card slot.

I went with Colossus (originally a Platinum Angel) to have something where I can just go Tinker-Win. Colossus is a lot more resilient than Angel is, just as long as you keep Welders in check.

I also chose Mox Emerald over Mana Crypt just because between 3 Cities, 3 Scrying, and 4 fetchlands, I felt that I took enough pain and the one colorless was often not used to the fullest as it would be in other decks. Keep in mind that with 3 Cities and 1 Emerald, you can near comfortably run Regrowth with only minimal penalty (that is, drawing it without green access), though I personally don’t see it as being worth it.

Tinker was often the wrong card to cast against the harder matchups in the format, especially Control Slaver. It’s really because of this matchup, that I’m weary about flaunting my ‘Tink-thang’.

Overall, I was only somewhat happy with this build. I had it ready well before Gencon, but was unable to attend. I’ve heard of others doing similar things with 4cC. I believe the Hadley crew was among those who hit on the concept right around the time I did (or before, we’ll never know or really care) as well. By the time I had started showing people, I started hearing that they had been working along the same lines as I had.

What happened to Control Slaver?

It won Gencon. It won Waterbury. It only made one placement in my sampling of 5 top 8’s. First I attribute this to the lack of New England results being fed to me. Constantly, I hear “I faced 3 rounds of Control Slaver before I hit the Top 8, then lost to it.” Second, I think it shows a health of the deck itself. Nothing in the deck is so overly broken that it’s an overall unfair deck. Good players put the deck in the top 8, but it’s usually by itself.

Where’s Oath?

Oath won’t show up until Novembers numbers. Everyone and their midget sidekick was trying to make an Oath deck that worked, yet my numbers show only 4 Forbidden Orchards in my top 8’s and Philip’s numbers will probably just show the 16 from the StarCityGames tournament. It’ll be interesting to see if the deck takes off on the steam of that one tournament or whether it was just a one-trick pony.

And finally…

Numbers by Jeek (sans the last Eindhoven)

The top 10 restricted cards

28 Mox Ruby

26 Ancestral Recall

26 Black Lotus

26 Mox Jet

26 Mox Sapphire

26 Sol Ring

25 Mox Emerald

24 Mox Pearl

23 Time Walk

20 Strip Mine

The 10 (11) lowest restricted cards

1 Mox Diamond

1 Grim Monolith

1 Chrome Mox

1 Frantic Search

2 Time Spiral

2 Regrowth

2 Lion’s Eye Diamond

3 Windfall

3 Yawgmoth’s Bargain

3 Mind Twist

3 Mind’s Desire

The top 10 (non-basic land) unrestricted cards

77 Wasteland

64 Force of Will

59 Goblin Welder

57 Volcanic Island

51 Rack and Ruin

50 Polluted Delta

50 Thirst for Knowledge

46 Brainstorm

44 Mana Drain

37 Mishra’s Workshop

*Cough*Trinisphere is 11th*Cough*


77 Wasteland

64 Force of Will

59 Goblin Welder

57 Volcanic Island

51 Rack and Ruin

50 Polluted Delta

50 Thirst for Knowledge

46 Brainstorm

44 Mana Drain

43 Island

39 Mountain

37 Mishra’s Workshop

36 Trinisphere

35 Crucible of Worlds

33 Red Elemental Blast

32 Chalice of the Void

28 Mox Ruby

27 Blue Elemental Blast

27 City of Brass

27 Duress

26 Ancestral Recall

26 Black Lotus

26 Flooded Strand

26 Mox Jet

26 Mox Sapphire

26 Sol Ring

26 Underground Sea

25 Mox Emerald

24 Mox Pearl

24 Smokestack

23 Tangle Wire

23 Time Walk

20 Fire // Ice

20 Shivan Reef

20 Strip Mine

20 Tinker

19 Mana Crypt

19 Triskelion

18 Gemstone Mine

18 Sundering Titan

17 Cunning Wish

16 Accumulated Knowledge

16 Dark Ritual

16 Mana Vault

16 Price of Progress

16 Tolarian Academy

15 Demonic Tutor

15 Mana Leak

15 Oxidize

15 Tormod’s Crypt

15 Vampiric Tutor

14 Blood Moon

14 Intuition

14 Swords to Plowshares

13 Gorilla Shaman

13 Library of Alexandria

12 Energy Flux

12 Goblin Lackey

12 Goblin Piledriver

12 Lightning Bolt

12 Memory Jar

12 Yawgmoth’s Will

11 Goblin Vandal

11 Xantid Swarm

10 Darksteel Colossus

10 Elvish Spirit Guide

10 Hurkyl’s Recall

10 Stifle

10 Swamp

10 Wooded Foothills

9 Back to Basics

9 Deep Analysis

9 Mogg Fanatic

9 Mystical Tutor

9 Siege-Gang Commander

9 Taiga

8 Animate Dead

8 Bazaar of Baghdad

8 Defense Grid

8 Duplicant

8 Echoing Truth

8 Goblin Grenade

8 Juggernaut

8 Mishra’s Factory

8 Naturalize

8 Oath of Druids

8 Ophidian

8 Squee, Goblin Nabob

8 Uba Mask

8 Worldgorger Dragon

7 Goblin Matron

7 Lotus Petal

7 Mindslaver

7 Null Rod

7 Ray of Revelation

7 Skullclamp

7 Wheel of Fortune

6 Artifact Mutation

6 Fact or Fiction

6 Fireblast

6 Flametongue Kavu

6 Goblin Charbelcher

6 Jester’s Cap

6 Karn, Silver Golem

6 Lava Dart

6 Necromancy

6 Powder Keg

6 Slice and Dice

6 Sphere of Resistance

6 Tendrils of Agony

6 Tropical Island

6 Tundra

6 Vedalken Shackles

6 Viashino Heretic

5 Balance

5 Bayou

5 Chain Lightning

5 Chain of Vapor

5 Coffin Purge

5 Misdirection

5 Platinum Angel

5 Skeletal Scrying

4 Arcbound Ravager

4 Auriok Steelshaper

4 Ball Lightning

4 Barbarian Ring

4 Bloodstained Mire

4 Chromatic Sphere

4 Cloud of Faeries

4 Curiosity

4 Darksteel Citadel

4 Daze

4 Death Wish

4 Disciple of the Vault

4 Food Chain

4 Forbidden Orchard

4 Frogmite

4 Genesis Chamber

4 Goblin Recruiter

4 Goblin Ringleader

4 Goblin Warchief

4 Grim Lavamancer

4 Ground Seal

4 Honden of Infinite Rage

4 Impulse

4 Isochron Scepter

4 Jackal Pup

4 Kird Ape

4 Land Grant

4 Morphling

4 Myr Enforcer

4 Ornithopter

4 Pyroblast

4 Pyroclasm

4 Rebuild

4 Shattering Pulse

4 Spiketail Hatchling

4 Standstill

4 Timetwister

4 Tinder Wall

3 Ambassador Laquatus

3 Chains of Mephistopheles

3 Chill

3 Control Magic

3 Crop Rotation

3 Gempalm Incinerator

3 Gilded Drake

3 Keldon Champion

3 Mind Twist

3 Mind’s Desire

3 Necropotence

3 Pernicious Deed

3 Propaganda

3 Psychatog

3 Spoils of the Vault

3 Su-Chi

3 Tsabo’s Web

3 Underground River

3 Vault of Whispers

3 Windfall

3 Yawgmoth’s Bargain

2 Ancient Tomb

2 Burning Wish

2 City of Traitors

2 Counterspell

2 Cursed Scroll

2 Demonic Consultation

2 Diabolic Edict

2 Disenchant

2 Dust Bowl

2 Ebony Charm

2 Echoing Ruin

2 Engineered Plague

2 Exalted Angel

2 Faerie Conclave

2 Gifts Ungiven

2 Goblin Cadets

2 Goblin War Strike

2 Lion’s Eye Diamond

2 Mana Severance

2 Memnarch

2 Mogg Sentry

2 Old Man of the Sea

2 Pulverize

2 Reckless Charge

2 Regrowth

2 Shatterstorm

2 Skirk Prospector

2 Time Spiral

2 Urza’s Rage

2 Verdant Force

2 Voidmage Prodigy

1 Arcane Laboratory

1 Blaze

1 Brain Freeze

1 Caller of the Claw

1 Channel

1 Chrome Mox

1 Dance of the Dead

1 Darksteel Ingot

1 Death-Mask Duplicant

1 Diminishing Returns

1 Engineered Explosives

1 Fastbond

1 Final Fortune

1 Fling

1 Forest

1 Frantic Search

1 Future Sight

1 Gaea’s Blessing

1 Gaea’s Cradle

1 Gauntlet of Might

1 Glimmervoid

1 Goblin Sharpshooter

1 Grim Monolith

1 Gush

1 Hull Breach

1 Kaervek’s Torch

1 Merchant Scroll

1 Mob Justice

1 Mox Diamond

1 Pentavus

1 Possessed Portal

1 Primitive Justice

1 Razormane Masticore

1 Shivan Gorge

1 Shunt

1 Stroke of Genius

1 Submerge

1 Sword of Fire and Ice

1 Tainted Pact

1 Zuran Orb

1 Æther Spellbomb