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  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    In the Hovey streams he doesn't play against any GDS opponents which is the biggest factor in the videos feeling out-of-touch with the current meta game. The lines of play are pretty relevant still and he doesn't play against any decks that are now obsolete or non-existent. I like watching these game play videos because of the misplays he makes. It helps me learn from them. And also the deck construction issues, like watching how he flops because of no basic forest, or how often Tarfire helps. It's inspired me to try 3x in my main deck, and certainly never play without the basic forest.

    One thing I feel is that it's hard to go all-in on Tarfire when you're also running 3x stub in the main deck. I know I've ranted quite a bit these last few pages about the value of stub but I'm currently trying 3x Tarfire and no stubs, with 2x Grim Flayer. Really trying to go all in on the aggro plan. I haven't had a chance to test against burn with my new configuration yet. I am happy to report that I won two matches last night, Jund 2-0 and UW 2-0

    -EDIT-

    Defish, I'm super interested in your main board surgical. Please report back with how it goes
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    I don't think the Shadow Zoo list is better positioned against even the linear decks (such Tron, Infect, or Storm) than we are as Traverse players. While Zoo is faster than us, they lack interaction so there's the chance a linear deck will just out-goldfish them. Whereas I personally feel like I'm currently piloting the absolute best deck in the format against fully linear opponents. The games I play against Ad Naseum, Amulet Titan, or even Hollow One & Dredge..are hilarious. Even Phoenix, Affinity & Scales are usually a blowout in my favor.

    Then you have mid-range creature decks like Vizier Combo, Humans, Spirits - all of which I'd say are medium if not slightly unfavorable.

    And lastly we have the highly interactive decks; our cryptonite. If we had just a bit more ways to protect our threats we could potentially shore up these matches and consider ourselves tier 1.

    I've been watching a few of the recent Dylan Hovey streams lately and he plays a mean traverse shadow list with 3x Tarfire. I personally don't agree with running only 1 basic (he has no forest) but the rest of his list has some serious gas.
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on Sultai Death's Shadow - BUG Shadow
    Yes, thank you for asking. My thoughts on a week of playtesting the deck:
    • 4x on Flayer, Incubate, Traverse - too many consistency tools.
    • 17x land is too few, we still need 18
    • 17x creatures has caused the occasional whiff on incubation so I think I want 18
    • even with Incubate, the deck still wants more cards which double down on delirium. Having no Tarfire really hurts
    • I almost want a basic island to traverse for. Might consider one in the SB for the BGx and UWx matches since they attack our mana base
    Refined deck list:

    My top concern is go-wide creature decks like Coco, chord, and Vial decks. Graveyard decks are a walk in the park. I need to text more against UWx and BGx though
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    Is something like Dragon's Blood a reasonable option against them? Collective Brutality could also be useful if the Vannifar deck starts picking up steam. They typically play chord, path, maybe more spells post board.

    Personally I have only played one match against the new spectacle burn. I won g1 with classic Shadow > TBR. Then game two he scoops after I turn 1 Thoughtseize him and see he kept a 6 with 4 lands, two spectacle cards, and no enablers. Weird keep

    I hope people keep playing new fringe decks hoping to crack the next flavor of the month because I feel pretty confident against most things. I've been doing fairly well in leagues lately, losing only to UW and Jund. I randomly lost a match to Titan shift because I miscalculated his lands. I let him resolve a hard cast Search for tomorrow when he already had a Valakut on the table. It made his 6th mountain and he popped my 3/3 Shadow when I had lethal on board next turn. I was holding Delay in hand ut didn't cast it on his SFT because I miscounted the mountains. It was game 3 of the match
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    Two main deck definitely seems odd for Cindervines. I'm not sure it does much of anything against dredge, spirits, GDS, humans, and it's likely too slow against tron or UW. But I hope I'm wrong. It'd be nice to have a enchantment card type as a staple to make delirium and Tarmogoyf better off.

    Report back to us with how it goes for you
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    I was mistaken about the reference because he was indeed discussing his GDS sideboard when suggesting Spellskite. But also has an article critiquing Peter Holman's winning list from a couple months back, here. It's interesting how often he admits that Traverse is actually better off than GDS against certain opponents.

    I've been really loving Grim Flayer lately. Both as an extra body but also because of his ability. Grim Flayer was the reason I won three matches this morning, one against 8-Whack, one against Dredge and the other against Spirits. In each match, he was an additional relevant threat and twice his surveil ability played in a game win.

    I've been coming around on LOTV again, currently trying two in my list. So far she's been stuck in my hand during a couple games, but I won those anyway.
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on Sultai Death's Shadow - BUG Shadow
    How many Pteramander would be reasonable to include? And if so, what would it replace? Should we take a more GDS approach with a focus on inst/sorc rather than a range of card types. One of the problems I see with The new Pteramander is that it's toughness always starts at 1 so it's always going to be vulnerable to a Gut Shot or Lightning Bolt

    I'm really trying to develop the Incubation/Incongruity idea from my previous post. Here are some other creatures I consider as 1-ofs for the main deck or Sideboard.

    Any other suggestions?

    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    I like to keep a small number of Wraith (usually 1) in against burn because, like Godrik said, it does help with delirium in a pinch. Also I've been lucky enough (several times) by bait my opponents removal by playing a 2/2 and backing it up with Wraith to effectively counter their burn spell.

    The tricks that can be pulled off to buff shadow at instant speed (besides fetch lands, because they see those plays coming) are not to be overlooked. It's one of my favorite aspects of playing burn spells over other removal because of the tricks you do by burning yourself. Bolt yourself into TBR with shadow swinging is 6 extra damage

    ----

    In a recent article by Ben Friedman he mentions using Spellskite as a Sideboard tool against Burn and UWx control. Any thoughts on that?
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    Grave hate is usable against all the most popular decks so I soberly want to be prepared. I prefer Spellbomb over surgical because it helps against delve and dredge as well as fuels the delirium theme.

    Might be right to shave all Thoughtseize against Affinity but I don't know if I could cut all Wraiths. I'd be worried I wouldn't hit my land drops.

    I also forgot to write a plan for burn, so I'll edit that in now.
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    Ok the Incubation theme is officially on the shelf. As much as I'd really like to develope that idea, I think it's overall weaker to affinity, humans, and spirits - which is not where I want to be. Back to my main list, with some Sideboard updates. Gearing up for GP LA


    Against GDS:
    -3 Temur battle rage
    -3 Stubborn Denial
    -2 Inquisition of Kozilek
    -1 Fatal push
    +3 Fulminator Mage
    +2 Liliana of the Veil
    +2 Delay
    +1 Kolaghan's command
    +1 Nihil Spellbomb

    Against UW Miracles:
    -3 Temur Battle Rage
    -3 Fatal Push
    -1 Stubborn Denial
    +3 Fulminator Mage
    +2 Liliana of the Veil
    +2 Collective Brutality

    Against Izzet Phoenix:
    -1 Fatal push
    -2 Grim Flayer
    -2 Street Wraith
    +2 Nihil Spellbomb
    +1 Faerie Macabre
    +1 Abrupt Decay (in case they bring Blood Moon)
    +1 Collective brutality

    Against Humans:
    -3 Stubborn Denial
    -2 Street Wraith
    +2 Liliana of the Veil
    +1 Abrupt Decay
    +1 Radiant Flames
    +1 Kolaghan's command

    Against Spirits:
    -2 Stubborn Denial
    -3 Street Wraith
    +2 Delay
    +1 Abrupt Decay
    +1 Radiant Flames
    +1 Collective brutality

    Against Amulet Titan:
    -2 Stubborn Denial (adjust Stub vs IOK depending on play or draw)
    -2 Grim flayer
    -1 Inquisition of Kozilek (not sure about this one)
    +3 Fulminator Mage
    +2 Delay

    Against Jund and BGx:
    -3 Stubborn Denial
    -3 Temur Battle Rage
    -3 Inquisition of Kozilek
    +3 Fulminator Mage
    +2 Liliana of the Veil
    +2 Delay (not sure about this either)
    +1 Abrupt Decay
    +1 Kolaghan's command

    Against Affinity and Scales:
    -1 Stubborn Denial
    -2 Street Wraith
    -2 Thoughtseize
    +1 Abrupt Decay
    +1 Radiant Flames
    +1 Kolaghan's command
    +2 Collective Brutality (just to kill and recover health)

    Against Dredge:
    -2 Street Wraith
    -2 Dismember
    +2 Nihil Spellbomb
    +1 Faerie Macabre
    +1 Radiant Flames

    Against Tron:
    -2 Dismember
    -3 Fatal Push
    +3 Fulminator Mage
    +1 Kolaghan's command
    +1 Abrupt Decay (for O-stone, Chalice, or Map if I'm on the play)

    Against Jeskai:
    -2 Stubborn Denial
    -2 Temur Battle Rage
    -2 Street Wraith
    +3 Fulminator Mage
    +2 Collective Brutality
    +1 Abrupt Decay (for Azcanta, Detention, & Clique)

    Against Burn:
    -1 Thoughtseize
    -3 Street Wraith
    -2 dismember
    +2 Collective Brutality
    +2 Delay
    +1 Abrupt Decay
    +1 Kolaghan's command

    ----

    Assuming I'm married to Stub and won't be dropping blue, does anyone have any suggestions or modifications?
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on Considering writing a book for beginners.
    Interest expressed.

    Please elaborate. I imagine beginning with the history of modern, maybe even starting with the old extended?
    Posted in: Modern Community
  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    What is the other spectacle card they play besides the pseudo-bolt?

    Or are you referring to the "exile two cards, you may play them until your next turn" spell?
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    I think GDS reminds people of a legacy deck, but also because people overestimate the power of Snapcaster Mage. Don't get me wrong, it's a great card. But we've already seen players drop their snaps to 3x and I wouldn't be surprised if GDS is just one new utility creature away from dropping snap to 1-2 copies if not all together. Death's Shadow is very land-light so its not always easy to take advantage of snappy

    Back in 2015 when the first "Shadow Control" list placed top 8, I used to run Esper Shadow where I didn't even use snap but rather Meddling Mage (alongside 4 TS, 4 IOK, and 4 Gitaxian Probe Rip...) and I never felt like I needed snappy.
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on Death's Shadow Jund
    Regarding Stubborn Denial: The way I see, it all depends on what you want to be prepared for. Do you want to prepare for your worst match-ups, where it's difficult to gain percentage points no matter how you cut it (though a smoother mana base helps) or do you want to be prepared for the decks that are most popular? I'll assess the value of Stubborn Denial, and the opportunity cost of running the 4th color, against some of the biggest contenders.

    • Izzet Phoenix (8.5% meta share) - Stub is a house, one of your best cards for the match. Easily worth the splash mana
    • Grixis Shadow (6.75% meets share) - Stub is useful but not always live, but good as a force Spike because they play a low and on curve. Not much effort to run the 4th color since they don't attack our mana. Red mana isn't important in this match so blue is arguably the next third color here (if let's say you have Snapcaster or Delay)
    • Burn (5.75% meta share) - Stub is once again your best card for the match-up. It's worth packing a 4th copy in SB if your meta is burn heavy. No contest that blue is a necessary color for a considerable win % increase here, even at risk of mana base life loss.
    • Affinity (including Scales) (4.5% meta share) - this match-up I am most on the fence about which is better to play. While they're both creature-based aggro, they both have crucial targets for Stub. The mama base pain should be considered. And personally I don't feel either traverse shadow variant should struggle in this match.
    • Dredge (4.25% meta share) - Extremely versatile card that stops all their key enablers. Not essential to maintain a positive win % for this match-up but also little to no risk by running a 4th color.
    • Bant Spirits (3.75% meta share) - Stub is mediocre here but has a few key targets that can swing the tide of the game. Overall I would estimate that Jund Shadow probably has a better win % however, due to less damage from your mana base. In my 4C list, I keep 1x Stub post SB.
    • Straight Jund (3.75 meta share) - Our worst (or close 2nd) match-up. Stub isn't going to help much as they are heavily interactive and always have extra mana to pay the force Spike. 3C Shadow clearly has a better win rate (though still not great by any standards)
    • Jeskai (3.5% meta share) - IMO our worst match-up. While stub is slightly more useful here than against Jund, the 4th color isn't free because they are both a burn deck and a control deck. Either version of our deck is going to have a tough time gaining % points no matter how you Sideboard.
    • Humans (2.9% meta share) - Stub is awful and you're clearly better off playing Jund Shadow if you're preparing for a Humans meta game.
    • Amulet Titan (2.9% meta share) - While it doesn't help with their key threat, it stops crucial combo pieces such as Amulet or Summoning Pact. Since they don't attack our mana and they're not aggro, there's virtually no cost to running the 4th color and increasing your win % here.
    • 4C Whir (2.75% meta share) - Stub is a house and dominates the match-up. Though Shadow is heavily favored here regardless.
    • G/x Tron (2.5% meta share) - same as above. Very useful for the match-up but we're favored either way.
    • UW control (2.5% meta share) - stub is more useful here than against jeskai because of Terminus, but UW also leans heavily on the mana Denial plan so the 4th color is a big liability. Jund Shadow is far from favored in this match, however slightly more favored than GDS or 4C.
    So how do we assimilate this information? Do we take the scariest, most difficult to win matches, and build based on what works best there? Humans, UWx, and BGx are certainly the most difficult to win, and Jund colors will prove more consistent and useful, but to what degree? And what share of the meta are you really prepared for here? Or do we prepare for the considerably larger share of the meta against which Stubborn Denial will add win % at little to no cost regarding mana base? Humans is the only deck where stub is completely dead, and it's dropped to a pathetic 3% meta share.

    Personally, in an open meta like GP LA which I'll be attending, I'd like to be prepared for the 29% of the meta (Tron, Whir, Dredge, Affinity, Burn, Phoenix, Storm, Infect) against whom I want stub and don't mind the 4th color, rather than be worried about the 13% of the meta (UWx, BGx, Humans) where stub and 4th color are a big opportunity cost that will cost you percentage points against opponents that are near impossible to beat anyway. I did not include in these cuts the 12.5% meta share from GDS, Amulet Titan, and Spirits because I feel that stub and the 4th color are not a huge hindrance but are likely only slightly helpful. Personally I strongly recommend blue for these matches but because of Delay which has been great for me.

    To attack this from an angle relative to Defish's point: what matches are you undoubtedly worse off against without stub? I'm not taking about Tron, Affinity, Spirits, or Amulet because while stub is applicable in those matches, Jund Shadow can be tuned to be highly favored. But my primary concerns are Phoenix, Dredge, and Burn which occupy a considerable meta share and our win % is definitely higher with stub than without.

    Personally, I'm keeping my stubs. No qualms about Jund Shadow players or the results they put up. All of my analysis really shows that there's a valid argument for both sides. I just like Stub. I feel that the best cards in the deck are Death's Shadow, Traverse the Ulvenwald, Stubborn Denial and Temur Battle Rage. And they're each the respective reason why I play each color
    Posted in: Midrange
  • posted a message on BUG Wilderness Teachings Turns
    Can you cast spells after WR's eot trigger resolves but before your turn actually ends? (So long as they're instants of course)
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
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