Final Painter Hand Answer

Hand No. 10: (on the draw)

[[Lotus Petal|]] [[Beseech the Mirror|]] [[Mox Opal|]] [[Scalding Tarn|]] [[Galvanic Relay|]] [[Bloodstained Mire|]] [[Beseech the Mirror|]]


This hand needs to draw exactly [[Dark Ritual]] to function while still losing to [[Mindbreak Trap]] or [[Surgical Extraction]]. The rest of the hand is fairly non-functional, we have so many six-card hands that are better due to the London Mulligan. Don’t be afraid to leverage that free [[Timetwister]]!

The EPIC Storm vs. Boros Initiative

the epic Storm

Main Deck
  • 4 [[Ponder]]
  • 4 [[Brainstorm]]
  • 4 [[Burning Wish]]
  • 4 [[Beseech the Mirror]]
  • 3 [[Galvanic Relay]]
  • 1 [[Tendrils of Agony]]
  • 1 [[Song of Creation]]
  • 1 [[Gaea’s Will]]
  • 4 [[Veil of Summer]]
  • 2 [[Thoughtseize]]
  • 4 [[Dark Ritual]]
  • 4 [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]]
  • 4 [[Lotus Petal]]
  • 4 [[Chrome Mox]]
  • 2 [[Mox Opal]]
  • 2 [[Cabal Ritual]]
  • 4 [[Misty Rainforest]]
  • 3 [[Bloodstained Mire]]
  • 2 [[Underground Sea]]
  • 1 [[Volcanic Island]]
  • 1 [[Bayou]]
  • 1 [[Taiga]]
  • 2 [[Echoing Truth]]
  • 2 [[Carpet of Flowers]]
  • 2 [[Boseiju, Who Endures]]
  • 2 [[Thoughtseize]]
  • 1 [[Consign // Oblivion]]
  • 1 [[Grapeshot]]
  • 1 [[Galvanic Relay]]
  • 1 [[Empty the Warrens]]
  • 1 [[Tendrils of Agony]]
  • 1 [[Echo of Eons]]
  • 1 [[Peer into the Abyss]]


Hand No. 1: (on the draw)

[[Brainstorm|]] [[Ponder|]] [[Burning Wish|]] [[Mox Opal|]] [[Volcanic Island|]] [[Bayou|]] [[Misty Rainforest|]]


This hand would be perfectly fine against most decks in the Legacy format. Against Boros Initiative, however, they have four main deck copies of each of [[Chalice of the Void]] and [[Archon of Emeria]] on top of an incredibly fast clock because of [[Seasoned Dungeoneer]] as well as [[Caves of Chaos Adventurer]]. We cannot afford to keep hands that lolly-gag around taking time to find themselves, we need to be fast — that’s the name of the matchup (for the most part).

Hand No. 2: (on the play)

[[Dark Ritual|]] [[Dark Ritual|]] [[Chrome Mox|]] [[Bloodstained Mire|]] [[Beseech the Mirror|]] [[Beseech the Mirror|]] [[Ponder|]]


In game-one situations where you’re on the play, Initiative decks have no interaction which means that you can just put a lethal copy of [[Tendrils of Agony]] on the stack.

Activate [[Bloodstained Mire]] to search up an [[Underground Sea]] and then cast a pair of [[Dark Ritual]]. Following that, we’ll play the [[Chrome Mox]] (Imprint: [[Ponder]]), cast [[Beseech the Mirror]] with Bargain sacrificing that same [[Chrome Mox]] to search for and then cast [[Gaea’s Will]] (Storm 5 | in mana pool). From there, we can replay our graveyard: [[Dark Ritual]],[[Dark Ritual]], [[Chrome Mox]] (Imprint: [[Beseech the Mirror]]), [[Beseech the Mirror]] into [[Tendrils of Agony]] (Storm 10 | in mana pool)

Hand No. 3: (on the draw)

[[Chrome Mox|]] [[Mox Opal|]] [[Lion’s Eye Diamond|]] [[Burning Wish|]] [[Beseech the Mirror|]] [[Song of Creation|]] [[Taiga|]]


A key to understanding the match-up is accepting that you’re unfavored and sometimes you just need to take some risks. For example, we’re keeping a hand that loses to a [[Chalice of the Void]] with zero counters. That said, if our opponent makes the more common play to cast [[Chalice of the Void]] for one we can then play our artifacts, cast [[Burning Wish]], and then [[Empty the Warrens]] for 10 [[Goblin Token]]s. These [[Goblin Token]]s would threaten to steal The Initiative and kill our opponent with their own Trap!

Hand No. 4: (on the play)

[[Thoughtseize|]] [[Brainstorm|]] [[Underground Sea|]] [[Misty Rainforest|]] [[Dark Ritual|]] [[Chrome Mox|]] [[Brainstorm|]]


This hand looks a bit like Hand No. 1 where it needs to find it’s own identity, which makes you wonder, “what’s the difference?” Simply put, this hand has [[Thoughtseize]] on the play. I specify on the play because when on the draw, it’s a useless card as their disruptive permanents will already be on the table. With this seven-card hand we’re looking to discard a copy of [[Chalice of the Void]] or [[Archon of Emeria]] and then on the second turn transform our hand with [[Brainstorm]] plus [[Misty Rainforest]]. There’s multiple levels with this hand, in fact, we even have a second [[Brainstorm]] in case our first one fails us.

Hand No. 5: (on the draw)

[[Veil of Summer|]] [[Lion’s Eye Diamond|]] [[Lion’s Eye Diamond|]] [[Lotus Petal|]] [[Dark Ritual|]] [[Bloodstained Mire|]] [[Ponder|]]


In Hand No. 3, I mention that opponents are more likely to play a [[Chalice of the Void]] on one rather than zero — this is true in my experience (especially if your name isn’t Bryant Cook). If your opponent decides to take the less likely play, however, we can use [[Veil of Summer]] to resolve our artifacts through the [[Chalice of the Void]]. [[Veil of Summer]] doesn’t care if the spell is blue or black, it just says that those spells cannot be countered. All things said, I would likely try to [[Ponder]] to set up a game plan rather than searching up [[Taiga]] or [[Bayou]] on the first turn with no other real strategy to move forward with.


Recommended sideboarding:

[[Echoing Truth|]] [[Echoing Truth|]] [[Boseiju, Who Endures|]] [[Boseiju, Who Endures|]] [[Thoughtseize|]] [[Thoughtseize|]]
[[Veil of Summer|]] [[Veil of Summer|]] [[Veil of Summer|]] [[Galvanic Relay|]] [[Galvanic Relay|]] [[Galvanic Relay|]]

Hand No. 6: (on the play)

[[Veil of Summer|]] [[Song of Creation|]] [[Burning Wish|]] [[Chrome Mox|]] [[Mox Opal|]] [[Boseiju, Who Endures|]] [[Brainstorm|]]


Unless to play [[Chrome Mox]] (Imprint: [[Song of Creation]]) and then [[Brainstorm]] into exactly [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] to allow yourself to [[Burning Wish]] into [[Echo of Eons]] I don’t see what this hand accomplishes. In fact, if you wanted to draw seven new cards it’s built into the rules system of the game!

Hand No. 7: (on the draw)

[[Thoughtseize|]] [[Beseech the Mirror|]] [[Beseech the Mirror|]] [[Lotus Petal|]] [[Thoughtseize|]] [[Bayou|]] [[Underground Sea|]]


In Hand No. 4, I brought up that [[Thoughtseize]] isn’t very good on the draw — that doesn’t change in the post-board games. In fact, it gets worse as your opponent has additional heavy-hitting spells such as [[Null Rod]] that they can resolve on the first turn. Meanwhile, this hand is also incredibly slow and not looking like a hand that is capable of winning unless we draw very well.

Hand No. 8: (on the play)

[[Gaea’s Will|]] [[Burning Wish|]] [[Chrome Mox|]] [[Lion’s Eye Diamond|]] [[Misty Rainforest|]] [[Misty Rainforest|]] [[Burning Wish|]] [[|Underground Sea]]


This hand is very interesting to me, we have the capacity to [[Burning Wish]] into [[Echo of Eons]] and then use [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] to discard the [[Echo of Eons]] for the Flashback cost. What’s interesting about it is, which card to you Imprint to the [[Chrome Mox]] so that you’re able to cast a copy of [[Burning Wish]]? I’d likely lean towards exiling the [[Gaea’s Will]]. If you Imprint the second copy of [[Burning Wish]] you only have six “Tutor effects” left in your deck and the odds you don’t find one in seven new cards is a little too high for my taste. The concern here is if you need [[Gaea’s Will]] post-[[Beseech the Mirror]] later in the game. Ideally, a [[Beseech the Mirror]] would find a [[Tendrils of Agony]] this turn to end the game and not having [[Gaea’s Will]] wouldn’t be a concern. If you don’t win this turn, there’s still [[Song of Creation]] plus the fact that you just ruined your opponent’s sculpted hand while you began the game with two extra permanents in play and a high Storm count.

Hand No. 9: (on the draw)

[[Boseiju, Who Endures|]] [[Echoing Truth|]] [[Echoing Truth|]] [[Chrome Mox|]] [[Bloodstained Mire|]] [[Dark Ritual|]] [[Veil of Summer|]]


This hand seems suspicious, but you’re 32 percent turn after turn to draw a payoff spell. Meanwhile, you have three answers for [[Chalice of the Void]], [[Archon of Emeria]], and [[Null Rod]]. Speed is the name of the game for the most part, but reactive hands when on the draw can end up stealing matches and this looks like a hand that can possibly do that.

Hand No. 10: (on the play)

[[Dark Ritual|]] [[Mox Opal|]] [[Beseech the Mirror|]] [[Underground Sea|]] [[Misty Rainforest|]] [[Misty Rainforest|]] [[Bloodstained Mire|]]

Share your answer in the comments below!

I’ll provide my answer in the next article. For now, make sure to leave a comment with your thoughts!