I suppose that the title requires a bit of explanation. A week before the usual unlimited-proxy tournament, I was heavily testing combo GAT (Gro-A-Tog), complete with Fastbond and Future Sight. Somewhere during this time, JP started talking about a U/G deck full of Type Two jank and posting ridiculous win records against Slaver. It was just stupid enough to test, and in the interest of writing a great article for you, the reader, I took what was essentially Odyssey Block Madness to a fully powered Type One event.
My reasons for doing so were obvious. Oxidize was completely insane against Slaver, much better than anything Red can come up with. The deck runs Null Rods, which have been pure petroleum in my previous tournaments. It runs enough Blue to support Force of Will, as well as gaining support from Circular Logic. And any deck that runs Stupefying Touch (go ahead, look it up) has to be good. The list, ladies and gentlemen:
3 Null Rod
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Time Walk
4 Tropical Island
4 Flooded Strand
1 Strip Mine
1 Black Lotus
1 Mox Emerald
1 Mox Sapphire
The Touches were there for obvious”inappropriate touching” jokes, as well as to shore up the Tog matchup, which gives this deck fits. Pre-sideboard, the plan against it is”Find a Wonder and pray for Wild Mongrel.” On other fronts, the deck has counters and Null Rod for combo and handles Slavery quite well, thanks to a strong sideboard and madness outlets, which minimize the effect of a Mindslaver turn by discarding the hand before the opponent can work evil with it.
The prize was a Mox of choice, and I sat down and got ready to show the world what Madness was made of.
Round 1, Kevin Cron playing Workshop Slaver
Like a day without sunshine, it is not a tournament unless Kevin and I play each other. Without fail, it has happened at every event I have been to. He is possibly my favorite person ever to play against, wielding my favorite deck to beat. Kevin gets an early lead when I have to mulligan to five cards, and quickly finds two Goblin Welders with which to beat me with. I play a Null Rod, and he drops a Chalice of the Void for two, basically killing the madness in my deck. He attempts a Windfall, which is answered by a Circular Logic for zero and then another for one. In my hand are four Arrogant Wurms with no madness outlet and four lands in play. The turn before I can grab that fifth land, Kevin flips down a Timetwister, shuffling me into a hand of useless madness creatures and another Circular Logic, which is totally cool with no graveyard. Needless to say, Kevin wins.
I manage to steal the second game with an early Wild Mongrel. He steals a dog with Duplicant, which is promptly Oxidized. When I pitch an Arrogant Wurm into play, Kevin scoops and we move on to game three.
We both do our thing in the early turns, me dropping a Null Rod and a Mongrel, him playing lots of now-useless artifacts. I start the attack with a Mongrel and a Basking Rootwalla and drop him to a precariously low life total. He plays a Memnarch, slowing my advance. I attack, but miscalculate the damage and miss my window of opportunity to kill him. He plays Mindslaver with enough artifacts to make sure I will not take another turn before I die to Memnarch. Remember that Null Rod? I stupidly pitched away a Black Lotus and the Welder did the fandango with it. Play mistakes suck, most definitely. Rian Litchard, a friend of JP’s and another pilot of the same deck, suggests just bringing Oxidizes in from the board and keeping Wonder in, as it is the counter to Slaver’s Man Plan if they hit aggro.
Round 2, Adam with Survival-Fruity Pebbles
Adam played Rian the round before me, and I was informed that his deck had Peacekeeper in it. Such a card means an autoloss for me, as my deck has precisely zero answers to it. I sit down to play Adam, and I lead with Tropical Island, Black Lotus, Time Walk, Ancestral Recall and Brainstorm in my opening turn. I get my aggro on and lower him to seven life before he Survivals up a Peacekeeper and plays it into my Circular Logic. He then coolly plays a Recurring Nightmare and I scoop when the Peacekeeper hits again.
I beat insufficiently, as Adam drops a Peacekeeper before I get him in the red zone. Figuring he has some creature-based kill, I play it out. His Academy Rectors find Enduring Renewal and Goblin Bombardment, using Shield Sphere to kill me. I would comment here about how 1999 called and it wants its deck back, but I was playing block Madness with power thrown in, so I have little room to comment.
I tell JP of my loss, and he informs me that I do not know the Secret of Steel, and when I go before Grom, I will be cast from Valhalla. You see, the entire deck has a”Conan” feel to it, with the swords on the sideboard being the source of its power.
Round 3, Mike with Control Slaver
Mike is a regular at the tournaments in Ohio and is a very tough adversary. I launch into the first game with two Wild Mongrels and outrace him. The bad thing about winning with Madness is that there’s little to write about when I actually pull off a win.
I Waste away his mana base, leaving Mike with only a Mox Emerald and me with an active Mongrel. I play a Wurm and then Time Walk, giving him a single turn to recover before he dies. He doesn’t find an answer and I get my first win of the day.
Round 4, Willie with Tog
I see two Basking Rootwallas and no madness outlets, so I end up hardcasting them and attack. They go the distance while I reserve counters and strip Tropical Islands to prevent Pernicious Deed from ruining my day. His life decreases in increments of six and we move on to game 2.
I drop out a second turn Wild Mongrel. My third turn consisted of me discarding Wonder, Deep Analysis, two Basking Rootwallas and an Arrogant Wurm. Those of you who played Odyssey-Onslaught Type Two might remember that sometimes, Madness just wins. His lone Deed gets countered and I regain hope for maybe getting into the Top 8.
Round 5, Roland with Tog
Roland is on Team Mercy with me, and we are both at 2-2 and so we have to play it out, much to our disappointment. I had identical tiebreakers with another player, so this match would still not guarantee me a spot in the top. In the first game, I get a Wonder hardcast and swing in with the most unlikely of heroes. It did the job and went all the way as I countered my way through to victory.
Sideboard: See round 3
The second game, I had a Wild Mongrel hit after he Mana Drained it, I Force of Willed his counter, he Forced back at me and I Forced it right back, winning the war. Roland played a Psychatog and won the battle over it, only to have it hit with Stupefying Touch. Instant sideboard vindication ensued. The poor creature sat on his side, unable to do much after being violated. I could tell Roland was tired and had been playing all day when he let my Mongrel through at five life and me holding three cards. I was happy for the victory, but bummed that I beat my good friend and teammate. It turns out that even with the 2-0 win, I ended up in ninth place, just short of the final steel-cage no-holds-barred battle royale for the Mox.
JP ended up winning the whole thing and Rian placed fourth, resulting in a considerable showing for a seemingly terrible deck. What does this mean for you budget players out there? There exists another proven deck that can do well in a very powered metagame and can be played in five-proxy tournaments. Best of all, many players already have the cards for the deck (minus the Touches, which every one of us had to proxy). If you are unsure of whether or not you want to play Type One, grab the cards you need for this deck and give the format a try.
I’d like to give thanks to JP and Rian for sending me a most awesome deck, my special lady Erin for baking cookies for everyone at the tournament, and Wild Mongrel for randomly winning games. Until later, readers!
Hi-Val on TMD