You CAN Play Type I #38: The Control Player’s Bible Part XIX – Head To Head With Stacker 2

Turn 1: Mountain, Mox Pearl, Mox Sapphire, Grim Monolith, Su-Chi. How does the Deck come back from a blazing start like that… Or can it?

The Control Player’s Bible, Book I (The Fundamentals of 5-color control)

Contents of Book I:

The Control Player’s Bible, Book II (Advanced 5-color control strategy)

Part XVI: Why Control Sucks

Part XVI: The Inquest Idiocy Quiz

Part XVIII: Head to Head: Sligh

Part XIX: Head to Head: Stacker 2

Stuff missing from last week

Through some strange fluke, our valiant editor printed the wrong column. I don’t know why, but the non-strategy content was copied from the previous week’s, so you might want to read it before moving on to this week’s column.

First of all, it seems I’ve made it to the next round of the Writer’s War, so kindly vote for me. Thanks to all the people who supported me from all parts of the globe.

(This article has been written way in advance because, as you read this, I’m probably not in Manila but way out in one of the provinces. So I have no idea what’s going on in the Net, but I’m sure everything’s fun in my absence.)

Update: The Inquest fiasco

I got a lot of feedback from that article on the”Killer Deck” in Inquest Gamer #85, especially on how the article seemed very similar – not to mention one card different – to an old Beyond Dominia guide written in 1999.

I hope you don’t mind if I print only two of them:

—– Original Message —–

From: Brian Weissman

To: Oscar Tan

Sent: Tuesday, April 09, 2002 6:51 AM

Subject: Article

All I can say is”awesome!” This is a fantastic article, and it really made me smile.  I don’t know how many times I’ve read utter BS in Inquest, and seeing you tear this guy’s entire article to pieces so meticulously was great.   I agree with basically everything you said, though at one point you do mention that Moat is an answer to Hypnotic Specter.  Keep up the good work Oscar, and I promise you that we’ll get a chance to chat/play on ICQ soon!  Take care.



Brian Weissman

—– Original Message —–

From: Brian Weissman

To: Oscar Tan

Sent: Tuesday, April 09, 2002 8:26 AM

Subject: Re: Inquest T1 Deck

Heh, your article pretty much says it all already 😛  This guy is as clueless as you’ve labeled him, and his”the deck” is a total embarassment. The absence of Gorilla Shamans from the main deck and Red Blasts from the sideboard is terrible, but the omissions of Fact or Fiction and Yawgmoth’s Will are downright criminal!   I think you should email this moron directly, and tell him that when he attaches the names of people to a deck, he should actually consult the person he mentions.  Ugh, this guy’s article just makes me mad, so I’m closing this email.


Brian Weissman

—– Original Message —–

From: Alex Shvartsman

To: Oscar Tan

Sent: Wednesday, April 10, 2002 10:04 PM

Subject: Re: Inquest

> Hi Oscar,


> I read the article last night and must say it was very good. I do not agree

> with all the strategy points (though I agree with about 80%+ of them)

> but the way you ripped into IQ was hilarious.  I also tracked down IQ

> editor Jeremy Smith and made sure he reads it and has SteveF read it –

> so you might get your public reply after all.


> Alex

If, like me, you feel very strongly about it, you can still write to [email protected]. I also e-mailed the lazy writer I criticized, Steve Frohnhoefer, but he did not reply. It’s been two weeks, you know…

I know this is a hobby and all, but demanding integrity and responsibility from people who take your money for their writing is never wrong.

(But, by the way, I mentioned Moat in relation to Hypnotic Specter because I was discussing Spiritual Focus. I was trying to be brief and was noting how the Inquest deck had so much creature removal, so using the anti-discard sideboard against creatures wasn’t a factor.

Also, I’m afraid Alex didn’t tell me which 20% he didn’t agree with. Everyone else who wrote pretty much agreed with everything, except Jarrod Bright who felt the number of blatant lies was more like fifty. So you see, I’m really gentle compared to the company I keep.)

Public Service Announcement: How do you Wish?

Finally, as a Type I columnist and forum moderator, I’ve had to answer questions about the Wishes countless times already, so I’ll repeat the summary here:

The Wishes are adapted from a funky Arabian Nights card:

Ring of Ma’ruf



5, Tap, Remove Ring of Ma’ruf from the game: The next time you would draw a card this turn, instead put into your hand a Magic card you own removed from the game or not in the game.

The key ruling is that”not in the game” here is limited to your sideboard only, not your binder and bedroom.

However, from our spoiler:

Living Wish



Judgment rare

Choose a creature or land card you own from outside the game, reveal that card, and put it into your hand. Remove Living Wish from the game.

Flavor text: He wished for growth, but not for a way to control it.

Note that it’s limited to cards outside the game, which should be read as from your sideboard in real play. Now, it seems the”removed from game” zone is still”inside the game,” especially considering the Ma’ruf wording. Until the Judgment FAQ comes out, I’m assuming this means no Flashback abuse at the Prerelease, and no recycled Yawgmoth’s Will and no picking up Timetwister or Morphling pitched to Force of Will in Type I.

The White wish fetches the best permanent hosers, since it fetches artifacts and enchantments. However, since it costs five mana, you might want to toy with Living Wish and the next best group of permanent hosers, especially in multicolor decks. (Yes, I know… Green is our usual off-color. The next best seems to be red, but most of the hate you fetch is directed against aggro.)

When Aggro Gets Funky

Anyway, last week, we began our look at aggro v.”The Deck” with the”standard” mono red Sligh. You saw how”The Deck” fended off a healthy mix of mana disruption, burn and beatdown, of speed and flexibility.

If we take Sligh as the starting point and survey the rest of the field, we’ll find that some aggro decks have more speed but less flexibility, while some have less speed but more flexibility. The latter are usually far from”classic” archtypes and are things you’ll see only in Type I. They draw a lot of flexibility from powerful Type I-only cards, and these powerful cards mean they don’t give that much speed up, too.

Today’s guest duelist is JP”Polluted” Meyer, a Long Island native and Beyond Dominia’s self-styled Mike Flores. He’s the man behind a number of Beyond Dominia rogue aggro decks, which fit his temperament. Today, he’s packing Stacker 2, the world’s strongest fat burner – a red/artifact deck based around Goblin Welder and Mishra’s Workshop. (You might’ve seen Dave Price’s Teletubbies; that was a blue/artifact deck and plays differently, though it shares Workshops with Stacker 2.)

As you’re going to see, Stacker 2 actually resembles Sligh, but has to be approached in a completely different way.

I’m using a pre-sideboard game, to highlight the skill it takes to approach this aggro deck instead of hate cards. What you’re about to see is a clash between two brutal, highly-powered titans, so guess what backdrop we’re using for today’s fight?

Hint: As requested by Jeremy Buffone, a.k.a., Riverboa11 from Beyond Dominia, no holds barred…

(Witty strategy commentary by Oscar Tan. Intense wrestling dramatization by Darren Di Battista, a.k.a. Azhrei. Questionable Magic tips by Inquest’s Steve Frohnhoefer not included.)

00:37:09 – — JP ”Polluted” Meyer says: ”ur mom parises”

00:37:09 – — Rakso says: ”Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war”

00:37:27 – Rakso drew 7 cards.

00:37:33 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer drew 7 cards.

Bad Player Meyer steps into the ring, gesturing to his fans who cheer him on wildly as he strikes a pose and the pyro illuminates him to the thousands of young girls whose hearts he’ll be breaking. In his head, anyway.

After the customary scowls and trash talking, we get right down to business. The referee gives the signal, then quickly gets out of the way.

00:37:41 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’keep’

00:37:43 – Rakso says:’k’

00:37:44 – It is now turn 1.

00:37:45 – Rakso plays Volcanic Island.

Slow start, I know.

00:37:45 – It is now turn 2.

00:37:48 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer draws a card.

00:37:50 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Mountain.

00:37:52 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Mox Pearl.

00:37:54 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Mox Sapphire.

00:37:56 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

00:37:57 – Mox Sapphire is tapped.

00:37:58 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Grim Monolith.

00:37:59 – Grim Monolith is tapped.

00:38:00 – Mountain is tapped.

00:38:01 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Su-Chi.

00:38:02 – Rakso says:’wtf?!’

00:38:02 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’ok?’

00:38:05 – Rakso says:’k’

What in hell???

Hey, I’m supposed to be the broken Type I deck on this table.

Okay, on turn 1, he’s played out five out of eight cards from his hand, and has six mana on the table. He also has a 4/4 out.



Artifact Creature


Antiquities uncommon

When Su-Chi is put into a graveyard from play, add four colorless mana to your mana pool.

This is what makes Stacker 2 very different: its main creatures aren’t affected by The Abyss, so no silver bullet. They’re a lot bigger than the Jackal Pups you saw in the Sligh sample, too.

Bad Player Meyer comes into the lockup forcefully, getting an immediate duck under and looks to roll me over into a pinning predicament…

00:38:06 – It is now turn 3.

00:38:07 – Rakso draws a card.

00:38:13 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’and i have red! mise!’

00:38:17 – Rakso plays City of Brass.

00:38:18 – City of Brass is tapped.

00:38:19 – Volcanic Island is tapped.

00:38:19 – Rakso’s life is now 19. (-1)

00:38:22 – Rakso plays Diabolic Edict.

00:38:24 – Rakso buries Diabolic Edict.

00:38:25 – Grim Monolith is untapped.

00:38:25 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Su-Chi.

The thing about Stacker 2, though, is that it needs a lot of mana for its big men. On average, it can only pack ten of those big artifact creatures, so there’s actually a chance he might be out of ammo after the first shot.

…I break his grip.

It’ll take more than that to catch me.

00:38:27 – It is now turn 4.

00:38:30 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer draws a card.

00:38:32 – Mox Sapphire is tapped.

00:38:33 – Grim Monolith is tapped.

00:38:34 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Su-Chi.

00:38:35 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’ok?’

But it’ll take more than that to stop him, too.

We return to neutral and I wait for an opening to make a move. BPM takes a deep shot in an attempt for a fireman’s carry into a pin, wobbling me off my balance…

00:38:38 – Rakso plays Force of Will.

00:38:39 – Rakso plays Mana Drain.

00:38:39 – Rakso removes Mana Drain from the game.

00:38:41 – Rakso buries Force of Will.

00:38:41 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Su-Chi.

00:38:42 – Rakso’s life is now 18. (-1)

I sprawl out and manage to maintain my footing, but he’s in past my defense and we’re both struggling to gain control.

00:38:42 – Mountain is tapped.

00:38:43 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

00:38:45 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Winter Orb.

00:38:46 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’ok?’

00:38:48 – Rakso says:’k’

00:38:50 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer set Mountain NOT to Untap as Normal

BPM aborts the move and switches his method of attack from upper to lower body, pulling my legs out from under as he lifts me up and plants me flat on my back with authority.

Winter Orb



Beta rare

As long as Winter Orb is untapped, players can’t untap more than one land during their untap steps.

Meyer is down to two cards in hand, though, and the aggro deck is out of steam. I’ve successfully blunted the first wave – on round 2, no less.

This is Type I. Broken things happen.

Now all I have to do is wrest the momentum… With that stupid Orb on the table, though.

00:38:54 – It is now turn 5.

00:38:55 – City of Brass is untapped.

00:38:56 – Rakso draws a card.

00:38:59 – It is now turn 6.

00:38:59 – It is now the Untap Phase.

00:39:01 – Mox Pearl is untapped.

00:39:02 – Mox Sapphire is untapped.

00:39:02 – Mountain is untapped.

00:39:02 – It is now the Draw Phase.

00:39:03 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer draws a card.

00:39:05 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

00:39:06 – Mox Sapphire is tapped.

00:39:08 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Winter Orb.

00:39:10 – Rakso says:’…’

BPM can’t follow up the move, so he gets a takedown with no back points. I manage to roll to my stomach and escape being pinned, but I need to escape and regain control before I can even think about winning.

Remember, we haven’t sideboarded, and I only have one Dismantling Blow against the two Orbs on the table.

Out by turn 3, on the heels of two 4/4s, I know…

00:39:15 – City of Brass is tapped.

00:39:15 – Rakso’s life is now 17. (-1)

00:39:17 – Rakso plays Mystical Tutor.

00:39:19 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’k’

00:39:25 – Rakso moves Ancestral Recall from Rakso’s library to tabletop.

Time to retaliate. I hit a switch and drive BPM face first into the mat, wrenching his shoulder and regaining control with a reversal.

00:39:09 – It is now turn 7.

00:39:30 – Volcanic Island is untapped.

00:39:30 – Volcanic Island is tapped.

00:39:32 – Rakso buries Ancestral Recall.

00:39:33 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’k’

00:39:34 – Rakso drew 3 cards.

00:39:37 – Rakso plays Mox Emerald.

00:39:38 – Rakso plays Mox Jet.

00:39:46 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

00:39:47 – Mox Jet is tapped.

00:39:51 – Rakso plays Demonic Tutor.

00:39:52 – Rakso buries Demonic Tutor.

00:39:53 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’k’

00:39:58 – Rakso moves a card from Rakso’s library to Rakso’s hand.

00:40:03 – Mountain is tapped.

00:40:03 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Lightning Bolt.

00:40:06 – Rakso’s life is now 14. (-3)

I begin to set BPM up to get stacked himself with a half Nelson, but I leave my body too high and haven’t broken down his base yet.

I get some much-needed Moxen to counter his Orb, but I’m not comfortable fighting the rest of the battle with them on the table, and I don’t have enough mana to do other tricks. I go for Gorilla Shaman to attack his mana. It’s also the only card I have that can kill both Orbs by itself.

Gorilla Shaman, a.k.a. Mox Monkey




Alliances uncommon

XX1: Destroy target noncreature artifact with converted mana cost X.

00:40:07 – It is now turn 8.

00:40:09 – Mox Pearl is untapped.

00:40:09 – Mox Sapphire is untapped.

00:40:09 – Mountain is untapped.

00:40:10 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer draws a card.

00:40:11 – Mountain is tapped.

00:40:12 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

00:40:12 – Mox Sapphire is tapped.

00:40:13 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Wheel of Fortune.

00:40:14 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’heh’

00:40:19 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer moves Cursed Scroll from JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s hand to JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s graveyard.

00:40:20 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer drew 7 cards.

00:40:23 – Rakso moves Gorilla Shaman from Rakso’s hand to Rakso’s graveyard.

00:40:23 – Rakso moves Vampiric Tutor from Rakso’s hand to Rakso’s graveyard.

00:40:23 – Rakso moves Sylvan Library from Rakso’s hand to Rakso’s graveyard.

00:40:23 – Rakso moves The Abyss from Rakso’s hand to Rakso’s graveyard.

00:40:25 – Rakso drew 7 cards.

He couldn’t have timed that Wheel of Fortune any better if he were using Backwash! He completely negated my card advantage, took out the card I tutored for, and I couldn’t play it since he’d could Bolt it before it did any damage and I had no reason to risk it.

BPM sees the setup and uses his superior leverage to dump me. I’m off my feet and on my hips now, and BPM is just a quick motion away from being in complete control with my back exposed to the mat.

00:40:27 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Tolarian Academy.

00:40:31 – Tolarian Academy is tapped.

00:40:36 – Grim Monolith is untapped.

00:40:37 – Grim Monolith is tapped.

00:40:38 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Su-Chi.

00:40:40 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’ok?’

00:40:43 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:'(that was to bleed mana)’

The game has completely turned around, ladies and gentlemen.

00:41:58 – Rakso plays Force of Will.

00:42:01 – Rakso removes Mana Drain from the game.

00:42:01 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Su-Chi.

00:42:02 – Rakso buries Force of Will.

00:42:03 – Rakso’s life is now 13. (-1)

BPM doesn’t get his body around in time, though, and we end up back in the neutral position waiting to make a move.

Third fattie hits the grave. At turn 4. BPM is not pleased at all.

00:42:05 – It is now turn 9.

00:42:15 – Mox Emerald is untapped.

00:42:15 – Mox Jet is untapped.

00:42:19 – Volcanic Island is untapped.

00:42:21 – Rakso draws a card.

00:42:25 – Rakso plays Mox Pearl.

00:42:28 – Rakso plays Mox Sapphire.

00:42:30 – Rakso plays Wasteland.

00:42:31 – Wasteland is tapped.

00:42:35 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Tolarian Academy.

00:42:36 – Rakso buries Wasteland.

00:42:39 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

00:42:42 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

00:42:43 – Rakso plays Regrowth.

Okay, he has two Winter Orbs on the table, but I have four Moxen and two land. He has two Moxen and a Mountain for mana, along with a tapped Grim Monolith. We both have five cards.

Major decision time.

I could go for Ancestral Recall… But Edict is already in the graveyard, leaving only Dismantling Blow, Swords to Plowshares and Balance to deal with the next fattie. I’m down to two cards, and want to buy some breathing space.

00:42:49 – Rakso moves Gorilla Shaman from Rakso’s graveyard to tabletop.

00:42:50 – Volcanic Island is tapped.

00:42:51 – Mox Jet is tapped.

00:42:52 – Mox Sapphire is tapped.

00:42:58 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Mox Pearl.

00:42:58 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Mox Sapphire.

I go for Shaman instead. That leaves him with one Mountain, and may stall him before he draws a Mishra’s Workshop. Also, Shaman is the only card that can get both Orbs out of the way.

I risk it, by the way, because I already drew Dismantling Blow off Wheel of Fortune, and have six mana on the table.

I manage to sneak in and set up a single leg takedown. I stand back up and prepare to take him off his feet…

00:43:01 – It is now turn 10.

00:43:04 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer draws a card.

00:43:08 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Mountain.

00:43:08 – Mountain is tapped.

00:43:09 – Mountain is tapped.

00:43:11 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Incinerate.

00:43:14 – Rakso says:’crap’

00:43:16 – Rakso buries Gorilla Shaman.

BPM later tells me Stacker 2 runs both Incinerate and Lightning Bolt. Oops. Going for the Shaman wasn’t as good an idea, then, especially when you consider I had four Moxen anyway and he still had five cards in hand and four Workshops left in the library. But I wanted to take out his cheap artifacts and thought it was worth the risk if he ran only four Bolts.

… BPM under hooks my arms and rolls me through it back over him.

00:43:22 – It is now turn 11.

00:43:26 – Mox Emerald is untapped.

00:43:26 – Mox Jet is untapped.

00:43:26 – Mox Pearl is untapped.

00:43:26 – Mox Sapphire is untapped.

00:43:27 – Volcanic Island is untapped.

00:43:27 – Rakso draws a card.

00:43:32 – Rakso plays Underground Sea.

00:44:20 – It is now turn 12.

00:44:30 – Mountain is untapped.

00:44:31 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer draws a card.

00:44:32 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Mishra’s Workshop.

00:44:34 – Mountain is tapped.

00:44:34 – Mishra’s Workshop is tapped.

00:44:36 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Juggernaut.

00:44:38 – Rakso says:’k’

00:44:39 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’ok?’

Mishra’s Workshop


Antiquities uncommon

Tap: Add three colorless mana to your mana pool. Spend this mana only to play artifact spells.



Artifact Creature


Beta uncommon

Juggernaut attacks each turn if able. Juggernaut can’t be blocked by Walls.

BPM starts to pull me into a cradle…

00:44:41 – Underground Sea is tapped.

00:44:42 – Volcanic Island is tapped.

00:44:42 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

00:44:43 – Mox Jet is tapped.

00:44:43 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

00:44:44 – Mox Sapphire is tapped.

00:44:46 – Rakso plays Dismantling Blow.

00:44:48 – Rakso drew 2 cards.

00:45:32 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Juggernaut.

…but I keep myself rigid and he has to break the hold and move back to a control position, but neither of us can take any offense now.

00:45:41 – It is now turn 13.

00:45:43 – Mox Emerald is untapped.

00:45:43 – Mox Jet is untapped.

00:45:43 – Mox Pearl is untapped.

00:45:43 – Mox Sapphire is untapped.

00:45:45 – Underground Sea is untapped.

00:45:51 – Rakso draws a card.

00:45:56 – Rakso plays Black Lotus.

00:46:06 – Black Lotus is tapped.

00:46:07 – Rakso buries Black Lotus.

00:46:09 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

00:46:10 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

00:46:15 – Rakso plays Morphling.

00:46:16 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’k’

I start to hit a Peterson roll and begin to bring him over…

00:46:18 – It is now turn 14.

00:46:23 – Mishra’s Workshop is untapped.

00:46:24 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer draws a card.

00:46:32 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’mm’

00:46:41 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Black Lotus.

00:46:42 – Black Lotus is tapped.

00:46:42 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Black Lotus.

00:46:43 – Mishra’s Workshop is tapped.

00:46:44 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Memory Jar.

00:46:48 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’ok?’

00:46:48 – Rakso says:’!’

…but he keeps behind me and stays in control…

Can you say broken again? By turn 7, I’ve had to deal with three fatties, all his restricted cards (Wheel of Fortune, Memory Jar, Tolarian Academy, Black Lotus), and still have two Winter Orbs in my face…

Fortunately, thanks to my Monkey and his own Orb, he only has one red mana left so this draw 7 isn’t as bad as the first one.

00:46:52 – Memory Jar is tapped.

00:46:53 – Rakso says:’sure’

00:46:53 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Memory Jar.

00:46:55 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays a card facedown.

00:46:56 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays a card facedown.

00:46:57 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer drew 7 cards.

00:46:58 – Rakso plays a card facedown.

00:47:00 – Rakso plays a card facedown.

00:47:04 – Rakso drew 7 cards.

00:47:06 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Mox Emerald.

00:47:10 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Goblin Welder.

Nasty! You saw it in Type II… But in a format filled with cheap artifacts, it’s the most dangerous element of Stacker 2. The game went along so quickly that he didn’t even need one early – three fatties already – but if I let this guy lose summoning sickness, every artifact on the table morphs into Su-Chi or Juggernaut, and nothing short of Balance is going to save me. Even worse, I can’t let it get active and start turning Winter Orbs into Memory Jars

Goblin Welder




Urza’s Legacy rare

Tap: Choose target artifact a player controls and target artifact card in that player’s graveyard. If both targets are still legal as this ability resolves, that player simultaneously sacrifices the artifact in play and puts the other artifact from his or her graveyard into play.

I can’t let BPM get a hold, not now…

00:47:14 – Rakso says:’wait’

00:47:18 – Rakso plays Force of Will.

00:47:21 – Rakso removes Misdirection from the game.

00:47:22 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’k’

00:47:23 – Rakso’s life is now 12. (-1)

00:47:24 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Goblin Welder.

Like I said, his own Orb left him with just one red mana to work with. He drew the nastiest possible one-mana threat, but he can only slip so many things past”The Deck” each game.

00:47:41 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Wasteland.

00:47:41 – Wasteland is tapped.

00:47:49 – Underground Sea is tapped.

00:47:50 – Rakso buries Underground Sea.

00:47:51 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer buries Wasteland.

00:47:52 – It is now the Discard / Cleanup Phase.

00:47:53 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer moves Mountain from JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s hand to JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s graveyard.

00:47:54 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer moves Lightning Bolt from JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s hand to JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s graveyard.

00:47:55 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer moves Mountain from JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s hand to JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s graveyard.

00:47:56 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer moves Winter Orb from JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s hand to JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s graveyard.

00:47:57 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer moves a face-down card to his/her hand

00:47:58 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer moves a face-down card to his/her hand

00:47:59 – Rakso moves Yawgmoth’s Will from Rakso’s hand to Rakso’s graveyard.

00:47:59 – Rakso moves Undiscovered Paradise from Rakso’s hand to Rakso’s graveyard.

00:47:59 – Rakso moves Fact or Fiction from Rakso’s hand to Rakso’s graveyard.

00:47:59 – Rakso moves Wasteland from Rakso’s hand to Rakso’s graveyard.

00:47:59 – Rakso moves Tundra from Rakso’s hand to Rakso’s graveyard.

00:48:02 – Rakso moves a face-down card to his/her hand

00:48:03 – Rakso moves a face-down card to his/her hand

Doubly nasty! I already used my tutors or lost them to his Wheel of Fortune. I’ve already used Ancestral and Regrowth. Now, my next card drawer and last recursion card just hit the grave uselessly. I’m not going to be able to fend off his attacks for much longer if this keeps up…

BPM left me some space, so I try it again. He’s up and over!

The dust clears… And I still have my Morphling!

BPM gets violently thrown to the floor! He’s down on his back and I’ve got his arm. It’s just a matter of locking down a pin now.

00:48:07 – It is now turn 15.

00:48:08 – Mox Emerald is untapped.

00:48:08 – Mox Pearl is untapped.

00:48:09 – Volcanic Island is untapped.

00:48:10 – Rakso draws a card.

00:48:12 – Rakso plays Underground Sea.

00:48:15 – Morphling is attacking.

00:48:16 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

00:48:16 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

00:48:18 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s life is now 15. (-5)

00:48:19 – It is now turn 16.

00:48:21 – Mishra’s Workshop is untapped.

00:48:22 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer draws a card.

00:48:25 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Mountain.

00:48:45 – Mishra’s Workshop is tapped.

00:48:46 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

00:48:46 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer plays Juggernaut.

He’s not giving it to me yet, but he’s not in a good position…

00:48:47 – It is now turn 17.

00:48:50 – Rakso says:’k’

00:48:54 – Mox Emerald is untapped.

00:48:54 – Mox Pearl is untapped.

00:48:54 – Morphling is untapped.

00:48:56 – City of Brass is untapped.

00:48:57 – Rakso draws a card.

00:49:00 – Rakso plays City of Brass.

00:49:22 – Morphling is attacking.

00:49:36 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

00:49:36 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

00:49:38 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer’s life is now 10. (-5)

I’ve worn him down, though, and soon get a tight lock up by his shoulder…

00:49:39 – It is now turn 18.

00:49:39 – It is now the Untap Phase.

00:49:41 – Mox Emerald is untapped.

00:49:42 – Mishra’s Workshop is untapped.

00:49:43 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer draws a card.

00:49:57 – JP ”Polluted” Meyer says:’aw, scoop…’

I lean and put BPM’s shoulders flat on the mat. Put a fork in him, he’s done.

BPM is counting the lights! BPM is down for the count!

Stacker 2, The world’s strongest fat burner, JP”Polluted Meyer”

Mana (29)

1 Black Lotus

1 Mox Ruby

1 Mox Sapphire

1 Mox Pearl

1 Mox Jet

1 Mox Emerald

1 Sol Ring

1 Grim Monolith

11 Mountain

4 Mishra’s Workshop

4 Wasteland

1 Strip Mine

1 Tolarian Academy


Creatures (15)

4 Goblin Welder

4 Su-Chi

4 Juggernaut

2 Masticore

1 Karn, Silver Golem


Direct damage (11)

4 Lightning Bolt

4 Incinerate

3 Cursed Scroll

Utility (5)

3 Winter Orb

1 Wheel of Fortune

1 Memory Jar

I think that example spoke for itself, and emphasizes that”The Deck” isn’t just about silver bullets. As the opposition gets funkier and handling it gets more confusing, you just fall back on basic card advantage and flexibility.

“Exotic” aggro decks: Predicting the unpredictable

As another example of dealing with aggro that gets funky, here’s a completely”nonstandard” deck, a test build of a multicolored aggro with Standstill played by John Perio (Perio on BD) from Texas. Now, I can’t predict what’s in his build because it’s so open-ended, but Type I is far from a game of perfect information.

04:39:43 – — x4b says: ”I am ready.”

04:39:43 – — Rakso says: ”Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war”

04:39:51 – Rakso drew 7 cards.

04:39:54 – x4b drew 7 cards.

04:40:09 – It is now turn 1.

04:40:10 – Rakso plays Underground Sea.

04:40:11 – It is now turn 2.

04:40:14 – x4b draws a card.

04:40:22 – x4b plays Mox Pearl.

04:40:24 – x4b plays Mox Ruby.

04:40:31 – x4b plays Tropical Island.

04:40:31 – Mox Ruby is tapped.

04:40:36 – x4b plays Kird Ape.

04:40:38 – Rakso says:’k’

04:40:40 – Tropical Island is tapped.

04:40:41 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

04:40:43 – x4b plays Standstill.

04:40:48 – Rakso says:’ooooh’

04:40:52 – Rakso says:’k’

Sorry.”The Deck” just isn’t the broken deck today. I’ve seen Standstill in action. It’s solid but hard to use, but it couldn’t have been dropped at a better time in this game.




Odyssey uncommon

When a player plays a spell, sacrifice Standstill. If you do, then each of that player’s opponents draws three cards.

04:40:54 – It is now turn 3.

04:40:55 – Rakso draws a card.

04:40:59 – Rakso plays Undiscovered Paradise.

04:41:04 – Rakso plays Mox Pearl.

04:41:08 – x4b buries Standstill.

04:41:09 – x4b drew 3 cards.

I just have to suck it up. I can’t just wait and let that Ape play by itself.

04:41:12 – Undiscovered Paradise is tapped.

04:41:14 – Rakso plays Gorilla Shaman.

04:41:16 – Underground Sea is tapped.

04:41:17 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

04:41:22 – x4b buries Mox Pearl.

04:41:23 – x4b buries Mox Ruby.

04:41:27 – It is now turn 4.

04:41:33 – x4b draws a card.

04:41:47 – x4b plays Wasteland.

04:41:50 – x4b plays Black Lotus.

04:41:54 – Black Lotus is tapped.

04:41:58 – Tropical Island is tapped.

04:42:03 – x4b says:’rrr’

04:42:04 – Rakso says:’k’

04:42:09 – x4b plays Lightning Bolt.

04:42:12 – Rakso buries Gorilla Shaman.

04:42:13 – x4b buries Lightning Bolt.

04:42:16 – x4b buries Black Lotus.

04:42:19 – x4b plays Call of the Herd.

04:42:20 – Rakso says:’k’

04:42:24 – x4b creates new card: 3/3.

04:42:31 – Kird Ape is attacking.

04:42:33 – Rakso’s life is now 19. (-1)

04:42:34 – Rakso’s life is now 18. (-1)

04:42:36 – Wasteland is tapped.

04:42:39 – Rakso buries Underground Sea.

04:42:40 – x4b buries Wasteland.

Repeat after me.”The Deck” is just not the broken deck today…

(Incidentally, I’m not sure why he killed the Shaman. I couldn’t trade for Ape, and he used the Lotus immediately. Remember this Bolt when you get to my life total at the game’s end, regardless of the Zuran Orb.)

04:42:43 – It is now turn 5.

04:42:46 – Rakso moves Undiscovered Paradise from tabletop to Rakso’s hand.

04:42:47 – Rakso draws a card.

04:43:00 – Rakso plays Underground Sea.

04:43:03 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

04:43:03 – Underground Sea is tapped.

04:43:06 – Rakso plays Balance.

…yeah, right. According to Inquest, maybe?




Beta rare

Except the player who controls the fewest lands, each player sacrifices lands until all players control the same number of lands as the player who controls the fewest. Players do the same for creatures and discard cards from their hands the same way. (Restricted in April 1995)

04:43:09 – x4b buries Kird Ape.

04:43:10 – x4b buries 3/3.

04:43:12 – Rakso moves Stroke of Genius from Rakso’s hand to Rakso’s graveyard.

04:43:13 – Rakso buries Balance.

04:43:14 – It is now turn 6.

04:43:18 – Tropical Island is untapped.

04:43:18 – x4b draws a card.

04:43:23 – x4b plays Taiga.

04:43:25 – It is now turn 7.

04:43:26 – Rakso draws a card.

04:43:29 – Rakso plays Undiscovered Paradise.

04:43:29 – Undiscovered Paradise is tapped.

04:43:30 – Underground Sea is tapped.

04:43:30 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

04:43:31 – Rakso plays Mind Twist.

04:43:32 – Rakso says:’2′

Mind Twist



Beta rare

Target player discards X cards at random from his or her hand. (Restricted in August 1994, banned in February 1996, unbanned and restricted in October 2000)

04:43:36 – Tropical Island is tapped.

04:43:36 – Taiga is tapped.

04:43:37 – x4b plays Incinerate.

04:43:40 – x4b moves Emerald Charm from x4b’s hand to x4b’s graveyard.

04:43:41 – x4b moves Hull Breach from x4b’s hand to x4b’s graveyard.

04:43:48 – Rakso buries Mind Twist.

04:43:51 – Rakso’s life is now 15. (-3)

See? Keep your composure, and play your game. That turn 1 Standstill was bad, but the tables have now completely turned. Plus, you already have a good idea of what are in his deck.

Three turns of land-go pass. I get a Wasteland and use it on his Tropical Island. He gets a Mox Jet and a Volcanic Island.

04:45:19 – It is now turn 14.

04:45:22 – x4b draws a card.

04:45:24 – x4b plays Blurred Mongoose.

04:45:25 – Taiga is tapped.

04:45:26 – Mox Jet is tapped.

Blurred Mongoose




Invasion rare

Blurred Mongoose can’t be countered. Blurred Mongoose can’t be the target of spells or abilities

This is nasty, but not on its own. I could use a bit more mana, though I have fifteen life to burn while waiting.

04:45:27 – It is now turn 15.

04:45:37 – Rakso draws a card.

04:45:40 – Rakso plays Mox Emerald.

04:45:46 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

04:45:47 – Underground Sea is tapped.

04:45:47 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

04:45:52 – Rakso removes Yawgmoth’s Will from the game.

04:45:59 – Undiscovered Paradise is tapped.

04:46:04 – Rakso moves Gorilla Shaman from Rakso’s graveyard to tabletop.

04:46:05 – Rakso moves Wasteland from Rakso’s graveyard to tabletop.

04:46:07 – Wasteland is tapped.

04:46:14 – x4b buries Mox Jet.

04:46:18 – It is now turn 16.

04:46:23 – x4b draws a card.

04:46:30 – Taiga is tapped.

04:46:31 – Volcanic Island is tapped.

04:46:32 – x4b plays Fire / Ice.

04:46:34 – Rakso buries Gorilla Shaman.

04:46:35 – Rakso’s life is now 14. (-1)

04:46:37 – x4b buries Fire / Ice.

04:46:38 – Blurred Mongoose is tapped.

04:46:39 – Blurred Mongoose is attacking.

04:46:41 – Rakso’s life is now 12. (-2)

I try to attack his mana and get a blocker, but it gets burned away. Twelve life is still far from dangerous, though.

04:46:42 – It is now turn 17.

04:46:44 – Rakso moves Undiscovered Paradise from tabletop to Rakso’s hand.

04:46:48 – Rakso draws a card.

04:46:52 – Rakso plays Tundra.

04:46:59 – Wasteland is tapped.

04:47:02 – x4b buries Volcanic Island.

04:47:03 – Rakso buries Wasteland.

04:47:06 – It is now turn 18.

04:47:09 – x4b draws a card.

04:47:18 – Blurred Mongoose is attacking.

04:47:18 – Rakso’s life is now 10. (-2)

04:47:26 – x4b plays Strip Mine.

04:47:27 – Underground Sea is tapped.

04:47:27 – Strip Mine is tapped.

04:47:28 – Tundra is tapped.

04:47:28 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

04:47:29 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

04:47:29 – x4b buries Strip Mine.

04:47:30 – Rakso plays Fact or Fiction.

04:48:21 – Rakso buries Mox Sapphire.

04:48:22 – Rakso buries Mana Drain.

04:48:25 – Rakso buries Fact or Fiction.

04:48:29 – Rakso buries Underground Sea.

04:48:30 – Rakso moves Library of Alexandria from tabletop to Rakso’s


04:48:31 – Rakso moves Misdirection from tabletop to Rakso’s hand.

04:48:32 – Rakso moves Zuran Orb from tabletop to Rakso’s hand.

Again, patience and card advantage. Did he just give me both Orb and a Library that I can use?

Library of Alexandria


Arabian Nights uncommon

Tap: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool. Tap: Draw a card. Play this ability only if you have exactly seven cards in your hand. (Restricted in May 1994)

04:48:36 – It is now turn 19.

04:48:39 – Rakso draws a card.

04:48:44 – Rakso plays Library of Alexandria.

04:48:47 – It is now turn 20.

04:48:51 – x4b draws a card.

04:48:53 – Blurred Mongoose is tapped.

04:48:54 – Blurred Mongoose is attacking.

04:48:56 – Rakso’s life is now 8. (-2)

04:48:57 – Taiga is tapped.

04:48:59 – x4b plays Kird Ape.

04:49:01 – Rakso says:’k’

04:49:03 – It is now turn 21.

04:49:04 – Rakso draws a card.

04:49:14 – Library of Alexandria is tapped.

04:49:15 – Rakso draws a card.

04:49:17 – Rakso plays City of Brass.

04:49:26 – City of Brass is tapped.

04:49:27 – Rakso’s life is now 7. (-1)

04:49:29 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

04:49:31 – Rakso plays Demonic Tutor.

04:49:35 – Rakso buries Demonic Tutor.

04:49:48 – Rakso moves a card from Rakso’s library to Rakso’s hand.

04:49:52 – Rakso plays Zuran Orb.

Zuran Orb



Ice Age uncommon

Sacrifice a land: You gain 2 life. (Restricted from November 1995 to October 1997. Banned in Type I.5 until April 1999. Banned in Extended since the creation of that format.)

04:49:56 – It is now turn 22.

04:49:59 – x4b draws a card.

04:50:04 – x4b plays Tropical Island.

04:50:06 – Blurred Mongoose is tapped.

04:50:06 – Blurred Mongoose is attacking.

04:50:06 – Kird Ape is tapped.

04:50:06 – Kird Ape is attacking.

04:50:09 – Rakso’s life is now 3. (-4)

Three life, and I’m not panicking.

04:50:19 – Taiga is tapped.

04:50:19 – Tropical Island is tapped.

04:50:20 – x4b plays Incinerate.

04:50:23 – Rakso plays Misdirection.

04:50:25 – Rakso plays Fire/Ice.




Mercadian Masques rare

You may remove a blue card in your hand from the game rather than pay Misdirection’s mana cost. Change the target of target spell with a single target.


04:50:27 – x4b buries Kird Ape.

04:50:28 – Rakso removes Fire/Ice from the game.

04:50:29 – x4b buries Incinerate.

04:50:29 – Rakso buries Misdirection.

04:50:31 – It is now turn 23.

04:50:32 – Tundra is tapped.

04:50:34 – Rakso plays Ancestral Recall.

04:50:36 – Rakso drew 3 cards.

04:50:54 – Rakso draws a card.

04:50:59 – Rakso plays City of Brass.

04:51:02 – Mox Pearl is tapped.

04:51:02 – Mox Emerald is tapped.

04:51:03 – Tundra is tapped.

04:51:04 – Library of Alexandria is tapped.

04:51:04 – City of Brass is tapped.

04:51:05 – Rakso’s life is now 2. (-1)

04:51:08 – Rakso plays Morphling.

It’s over. I even Regrow Ancestral Recall in the middle of Morphling’s cleanup job for good measure.

I was in complete control, and don’t think that was even close just because I dropped Morphling at two life. A smart aggro player would say that I won at turn four, after a BalanceMind Twist sequence that ended with Fact or Fiction.

A dumb aggro player would ask DCI to restrict Morphling.

There’s usually just one thing you can predict about multicolored aggro decks, and it’s that they’re slower than mono colored versions. You’re”The Deck” though, and you can win a battle of flexibility if you use everything at your disposal from the Land Destruction Option to basic card advantage to simply your life total.

Again, keep calm, and make intelligent guesses as to what you’re up against. If there’s one format where you can just play anything, it’s Type I, after all.

Last week, we began by examining the archtypical mono red Sligh v.”The Deck” matchup, and followed up with a look at more flexible builds. Next week, we’ll check out the other extreme: Pure beatdown and no more tricks.

Oscar Tan

[email protected]

rakso on #BDChat on Newnet

Manila, Philippines

Type I, Extended and Casual Maintainer, Beyond Dominia (http://www.bdominia.com/discus/messages/9/9.shtml)

Featured writer, Star City Games (http://www.starcitygames.com/php/news/archive.php?Article=Oscar Tan)

Proud member of the Casual Player’s Alliance (http://www.casualplayers.org)

P.S. – Thanks to Brian Weissman, John Ormerod, Darren di Battista, a.k.a Azhrei, JP”Polluted” Meyer, Matt D’Avanzo and Adam Duke a.k.a. Meridian for being tough critics of the drafts of this series.

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