Oh frabjous day, my scrumptious card-muffins! It is I, the inestimable Doctor Mox, back to pour soothing oils on the turbid waters of your CCG angst.
Jetta and I send our love to you all, even if our surroundings are a little uncommon. In order to maintain her chastity until our wedding night, Jetta has decreed we spend our evenings apart, under extreme sensory depravation, suspended in individual isolation tanks at a local “facility”. We lie on our backs, adrift in a warming fluid, lulled towards slumber by the faint chorus of whale-song. Humpback, if I’m not mistaken
Naturally, I am feeling the pinch a little more sharply than my bride-to-be. For a start, depriving me of my five senses seems a little more unpalatable than depriving Jetta of her remaining four: she lost all sense of smell at the age of seven after an unorthodox accident involving a ukulele, a helicopter and large bag of ground black pepper.
But all is not lost! While the bleakness that surrounds me may seem infinite, there is a light at the end of my tunnel: they may take away my senses, but they do not restrain my stimulating hands. I am still able to vent my considerable pressures, twice a night if necessary.
But enough! There are letters to answer. Yesterday, I sent out the call. I asked for Type Two deck archetypes that you’d like to see me discuss during my daily diatribe. I received thousands of emails, several hundred letters, a smattering of phone-calls, three death-threats and a video with contents so depraved it is now in the hands of the local police.
Thank you fine and forthright folk for your fantastic collection of possible deck contenders. I feel that I have ample ammo with which to wage war on the Type Two scene. Of course, if there are more decks you’d like to see dissected, be sure to mail me at the address below.
From the bulging sacks, I plumped for the following two missives:
Dear Doctor Mox,
Oh Oh! Do Mono Blue! Hummina hummina do Mono Blue!!! Vedalken Shackles 4 life!!!! Blooooouuuu…
Keldeagh, via email.
Dear Doctor Mox,
One strong archetype that too few articles cover in Type Two is Black/Green Death Cloud. The deck is fabulous. It’s the bee’s knees, the mutt’s nuts, the cod’s pods AND the cheetah’s peter.
All my love,
Ewing4686, via email
Ps: that is not my real name.
Keldeagh, Ewing4686… I thank you from the bottom of my bottom.
Thus far I’ve tackled Tooth and Nail, following it with Affinity. Today, I give you two deconstructions on the suggested decktypes. Dig your teeth into them and chew.
Ladies, Gentlemen, and you confused souls waiting for the op… I bring you Doctor Mox Guide to Type Two, part 2.
Deck Three: B/G Death Cloud Control
Black/Green Death Cloud Control is a mid-range creature-based control deck, relying on obtaining card advantage, mana acceleration and creature superiority. It has a loose template based on ideas first formulated in Extended’s “Rock” deck, therefore it goes 50/50 with everything and has a posse of purblind admirers who fail to acknowledge the deck’s inherent flaws.
1: Is B/G Death Cloud Control fun to play?
I suppose so. It makes early men, such as the land-on-legs that is Sakura-Tribe Elder, and follows them up with board and hand clearers, then usually slaps down with a Kokusho (Latin name: Draconis Assus Humongous). Any deck that serves with a dragon gets my vote.
There is also fun to be had by living dangerously with this deck. A well-timed Death Cloud can whittle both your opponent’s hand and your own. Clenching both cheeks and relying on the top-deck deities is always good for a laugh.
2: Is B/G Death Cloud Control competitive?
It won a number of States and Provincial championships the World over, so it is definitely a contender. It couples the discard and creature control elements from Black with the mana acceleration and artifact hate from Green.
However, the current Type Two scene has two death clouds to deal with. The first is the Black x-spell found in this deck. The second, and more dangerous, is the spectre of Affinity. Until this beast is put to pasture, nothing is competitive.
As the deck draws its inspiration from the Extended Rock, it does have a number of options and outs in any given game. Sadly, the Standard pool isn’t quite as deep, and many a rash diver had cracked his head on the bottom after leaping into the water head-first.
Jetta is a particular fan of this deck, especially the recursion available through the card Eternal Witness. She is enamoured by doing the same thing over and over again. Indeed, when the mood takes her she can become quite demanding. Lord knows I do my best to keep up, but sometimes even my patented soothing balm cannot fend off the fire.
3: What type of player would B/G Death Cloud Control suit best?
The natural candidate for Black/Green Death Cloud Control is anyone who enjoys playing the Rock in Extended. Though why they feel the need to take an uncompetitive deck and adapt it for another format by stripping it of its strongest features is beyond me.
The deck relies on deprivation. It deprives opponents of their creatures, their hand, even their mana-base. Therefore, the deck is a must for players who enjoy taking things from people. Burglars, Pickpockets, [censored] doctors and the IRS would enjoy Black/Green Death Cloud Control.
You should also consider this deck if you fancy yourself as an evil mad scientist in the Frankenstein mold. After all, you’ll be used to trying to resurrect a long-dead creation made up of substandard parts, haphazardly stitched and smelling slightly of decomposing flesh.
4: Is B/G Death Cloud Control difficult to play correctly?
There are many variations on this archetype, therefore it is safe to assume that it is more difficult to build correctly than play correctly. Leaving aside this issue, however, we find that the deck can be surprisingly resilient at times, yet it falls prey to the dreaded spectre of inconsistency.
Sideboarding can also be tricky, as diluting any of the components of a mid-range control deck plays blue havoc with its playability and success rates.
As long as you protect your key spells and use your disruption effectively, then the deck can be a pleasure to play. Just don’t come crying to me when you face down a mono-red deck and pull nothing but bloody Oxidizes all match long.
Deck Four: Mono Blue
Mono Blue takes a perfectly good set of card sleeves and contaminates them by filling each one with a Blue-based travesty. It counters things, bounces things, steals things and generally makes your life a misery.
1: Is Mono Blue fun to play?
My sweet Lord, NO!
No, no and thrice no!
No No No No (absolutely not).
No, no, never… No-no never, no more…
In a word… no.
Mono blue is the dullest, dirtiest, dankest ditch-water deck I’ve ever had the misfortune to see.
The deck has one cardinal rule: “stop things happening.”
And I resent playing a game against someone who is actively seeking ways to stop me play.
2: Is Mono Blue competitive?
At the moment, I’m happy to say that the Mono Blue menace is a Tier 2 deck at best. Why? Because of the crushing speed and brutal battery brought down by the not-so humble Affinity stalwarts.
Control players, here’s a little piece of advice… don’t even play anti-Affinity cards in your frickin’ sideboard. They’ll do naught but weaken your chances against other decks in the field.
I don’t care how many March of the Machines you draw, or how many Annuls you play main… Affinity simply stands there laughing, buck-naked, waggling its Ravager in your protesting face.
3: What type of player would Mono Blue suit best?
Ideally, Mono Blue players should be Space-Lizards hell-bent on enslaving Earth under the tyrannical yoke of their glorious home planet, imprisoning all human life into the dudgeon and despair of the Space-Lizard Smegma-Mines. After all, no self-respecting human being would play Mono Blue unless under the influence of hard drugs. Or under the influence of subliminal messages only heard by playing Judas Priest records backward (or Justin Timberlake records forwards). Or under the influence of a tattooed man named “Jackie the Dagger” who claims that he’s kidnapped your dog and is ready to hack off a paw each time you disobey one of his commands.
The most successful Mono Blue players are arrogant, opinionated, self-centred muppets. I mean, what the Hell’s the deal with bloody Vedalken Shackles?!
Killing people with their own creatures?! How terribly smug.
Seriously… if you’re planning on becoming a Blue mage, I’d invest in a fencer’s mask. That’ll stop you having to spend countless dollars on reconstructive surgery when irate Magic players kick biscuits out of your skull.
4: Is Mono Blue difficult to play correctly?
It can be. I have a theory that I’ve touched on before. To me, the ability to say “No” is of lesser significance than the ability to say “Yes.”
Sure, any yin-yang can counter card after card, hopefully drawing out their opponent’s threats before they themselves are depleted of answers. But the measure of the great control player lies in the ability to let threats resolve and save the countermagic for the truly dangerous stuff. Choosing the correct spells to deny… there’s the rub, my friends.
But frankly, if you choose to play Mono Blue then I hope it is difficult for you. I hope it’s so bloody difficult that you cry yourself to sleep each night, hands shaking though nervous tension, unable to rest and relax due to the enormity of your sins weighing down on your blackening conscience.
You’re a self-proclaimed Blue mage, and you deserve all you get.
On that note, I draw a veil over my Type Two cornucopia. There are more decks to mention, but I’m far too lazy to try.
It is time for me to depart. Tonight, Jetta and I had planned to attend an exhibition of show-jumping on the village green. Sadly, the organizer spent his yearly budget on the purchase of four sensory depravation isolation tanks (of which Jetta and I are the only customers), and therefore cancelled this equine extravaganza.
Luckily, Jetta and I are resourceful. We plan to recreate the event in out lounge area using a pair of highly trained otters and a large box of Q-tips.
Until next time, keep paying the kicker!
NB: If you have a question for Doctor Mox, he can be contacted at [email protected].
Contents may have settled in transit.