Being stuck in the past is the best way to get left in the dirt when bigger and better things arrive. This applies to Legacy just as much as other aspects of life. To stay competitive in the cutthroat environment of Legacy (thanks [[Delver of Secrets]]), constant evaluation of your strategy and deck list need to be made. Getting a strategy and deck list to align is no small feat. Certainly, established archetypes have a structure that supports their success. When that structure is altered (e.g. removing [[Ponder]] from The EPIC Storm), it may be time to re-evaluate the game plan.
The initial thoughts behind the changes seen in The EPIC Storm v13.3 were brought about by recognizing some tension with our sideboard plan. When playing against Blue decks, the plan is to lean into [[Galvanic Relay]] as a card advantage engine, seeking to overwhelm the opponent. The previous sideboard plan exchanged [[Rite of Flame]] for [[Carpet of Flowers]]. While a marked improvement in power level against opposing copies of [[Island]], this was only a lateral shift in the plan. [[Rite of Flame]] is good when paired with [[Galvanic Relay]] too! This tension of replacing an already-good card for a better card in the matchup did not sit well with us. Paired with the knowledge that [[Chalice of the Void]] decks are seeing increased play with the popularization of Moon Stompy, we saw an opportunity to improve The EPIC Storm even further.
Cutting [[Carpet of Flowers]] means we cannot claim the title of “Delver Killer”, a name brought about by the inclusion of our favorite enchantment and its strength against a deck that could not remove it once in play. Now that we have included more potent sideboard cards against the non-Blue meta share, it is time for a new nickname. The EPIC Storm v13.3 or “Stompy Stomper” is tailor-made to maintain the same power against Blue decks but have the interaction needed to face [[Trinisphere]] and [[Chalice of the Void]]. [[Crash]] is a card that has been used in older versions of the deck, and now it resurfaces for more time in the limelight. The power of [[Crash]] exists in the ability not to sacrifice “tempo” when it is time to combo. Having a free spell to interact with hate pieces can make or break a game — whether cast directly from hand or plus-one mana from a [[Wishclaw Talisman]] activation. Additionally, we have included [[Grapeshot]] as our third card to replace the copies of [[Carpet of Flowers]]. It being back in the board might look like an out to a resolved [[Veil of Summer]] across the board. While this is certainly an option, the main reason for its inclusion is flexibility. From small Storm turns to kill a RB Reanimator opponent after they do most of the damage themselves via [[Griselbrand]] activations, to removing a pesky [[Collector Ouphe]] from Elves or Naya Depths, [[Grapeshot]] has the flexibility needed to push through some of the matchups our sideboard was not previously made for.
Responding to metagame changes in Legacy can be time-consuming and getting lost in the weeds is a real danger. Familiarity with a deck’s strategy is the first step to streamlining that process. That knowledge can then inform deck lists and card choices. For The EPIC Storm, the response to increased [[Galvanic Relay]] plans against Blue decks was the recognition that our “Delver Killer” sideboard plan was no longer necessary. Paired with the uptick in prison strategies, the sideboard changes mark the strategy we want to have against them. Again, change is good! The copies of [[Carpet of Flowers]] served The EPIC Storm very well, now is the time to try something new. Let’s see how these changes work in practice and if we really can stomp Stompy decks.
Douges is a long-time Legacy enthusiast who started streaming the GWx side of the format back in 2019. He’s the founder of the GreenSunsZenith.com, a home for Legacy Maverick and is itching to play in a European Legacy tournament after getting a taste for international events via Legacy GP’s in Kyoto (2018) and Los Vegas (2017).
Guest’s Note: I want to give a quick shout out to one of my best mates I’ve met through my local scene Chris Raymond (Brisbane Eternal Weekend 2019 Champion) as key proof reader to make sure I wasn’t making any foolish mistakes.
Our first situation is against a Storm deck that hasn’t seen extended amounts of play in a while. Ruby Storm is usually a mono-Red deck that utilizes the cost-reducing power of [[Ruby Medallion]] to power out a large combo turn with [[Bonus Round]], [[Jeska’s Will]], and the entire Red ritual suite. While it did see a resurgence with new printings, the deck is outclassed by its predecessor The EPIC Gamble. Thanks to the near-Herculean efforts of Tony Scapone, the ritual-based Storm deck has evolved into an artifact-based Storm deck. Despite this new evolution, Ruby Storm is still a uniquely powerful deck! Capable of making ridiculous amounts of Red mana, there is a classic feel to casting [[Ruby Medallion]]. Thankfully for The EPIC Storm, Ruby Storm is a slightly slower deck compared to The EPIC Gamble. While capable of winning without [[Ruby Medallion]] in play, the smoothness of the deck does falter. So there is often at least a turn available to us as The EPIC Storm.
Interaction is not the name of the game here. While Ruby Storm does have some interaction points with [[Burning Wish]] targets like [[Shattering Spree]] to remove a key artifact on our board, we have inclusions like [[Chain of Vapor]] to bounce their cost-reducer. Make no mistake, this is most often a flat-out race to the finish line. The goal is to be quick and hyper-efficient.
-2 [[Galvanic Relay]]; +1 [[Chain of Vapor]], +1 [[Thoughtseize]]
Even though all that is left is a simple [[Chrome Mox]] trigger, this turn began with the famous [[Ad Nauseam]] trick. By putting [[Chrome Mox]] on the stack and responding to it with [[Ad Nauseam]], you can utilize the cards “drawn” to Imprint underneath [[Chrome Mox]]. This may not matter, but in low-resource situations, it could mean the difference between a win and a loss. Ruby Storm does not have any interaction for zero mana, the coast is clear. We are, however, a single mana short of the lethal [[Tendrils of Agony]] in our hand! Thank goodness we aren’t two mana off — the [[Chrome Mox]] trick pays off. Can we find a path to victory with this pile of cards in hand? Do we [[Brainstorm]] to find what we need or is there a cleaner line?
Author’s Note: This match was played with TES v13.2 as seen by the [[Carpet of Flowers]] in the sideboard. Would anything have changed with our plan if [[Crash]] and [[Grapeshot]] were included in our deck?
First, let’s assess the board state and look at some of the things that stand out. Our Storm count is already at seven and therefore we only need three additional spells (including [[Tendrils of Agony]]) to finish off our opponent with 20 life. Although this is a postboard game, I wouldn’t expect any countermagic or interaction from our opponent based on typical TEG lists. After we exile a card under the [[Chrome Mox]], we’ll have access to two mana on board. Playing the [[Mox Opal]] out will give us access to three mana thanks to Metalcraft and that’s where I first got stuck. Three mana doesn’t do a whole lot here to the untrained eye. Use it all to cast and fetch with [[Wishclaw Talisman]]? Try to [[Brainstorm]] into the unguaranteed mana and spells to win?
Hold up. Let’s read [[Chain of Vapor]]
If I want to return my own permanents that cost nothing to replay (other than exiling another card to [[Chrome Mox]]), I can effectively get two additional copies of [[Chain of Vapor]] (that don’t count towards Storm) thanks to the two lands in play. Alright let’s go for this!
I will exile a copy of [[Brainstorm]] under [[Chrome Mox]] then play [[Mox Opal]] (Storm 8). I’ll tap both copies of [[Chrome Mox]] for then cast [[Chain of Vapor]] targeting [[Mox Opal]] (Storm 9 | ). I’ll copy [[Chain of Vapor]] once sacrificing the [[Badlands]] to return [[Chrome Mox]], then copy it again sacrificing the [[Underground Sea]] to return the [[Lotus Petal]]. Now we can replay [[Mox Opal]], replay the [[Lotus Petal]], and replay [[Chrome Mox]] (Storm 12 | ) to add and cast [[Tendrils of Agony]]. You don’t need to return the [[Lotus Petal]] as the Storm count would still be lethal without, but what sort of Storm player doesn’t like additional copies of spells?
Someone already did most of the work for us! With such a high Storm count, the only thing left is to find out how best to put this [[Tendrils of Agony]] on the stack. If there is a prompt to find a cleaner line to victory, odds are there is one — I should know, I wrote the prompt.
In this case, the key card is the handy [[Chain of Vapor]]. With the ability to bounce and replay our zero-mana artifacts, this will net one additional mana for the [[Tendrils of Agony]] we almost missed out on. Start by imprinting a [[Brainstorm]] under the [[Chrome Mox]] and play [[Mox Opal]]. Tap for . Next is chaining the [[Chain of Vapor]] targeting [[Chrome Mox]] and copying to target [[Mox Opal]]. Replaying these artifacts (Imprint any non-[[Tendrils of Agony]] card) and the game is ours!
Since it’s close to Halloween, the alternative line is to also bounce the [[Lotus Petal]] and replay it. This line doesn’t add any additional mana, but it does make the Storm count the extra spooky number thirteen.
Is it even an Infernal Tutoring without a [[Chain of Vapor]] trick? Imprint [[Brainstorm]] to the [[Chrome Mox]], play [[Mox Opal]], and then tap it for . Now cast [[Chain of Vapor]] targeting [[Mox Opal]], sacrifice a land to copy it, and then return [[Chrome Mox]]. Replay both artifacts and then cast [[Tendrils of Agony]].
Imprint [[Brainstorm]], cast [[Mox Opal]], float a Black mana, cast [[Chain of Vapor]] targeting [[Chrome Mox]], sacrifice lands to pick up the rest of the mana rocks, replay everything and then cast [[Tendrils of Agony]].
If [[Crash]] was in the deck, the [[Ad Nauseam]] would likely have drawn significantly fewer cards given that some of these copies of [[Veil of Summer]] would have been a [[Crash]].
We haven’t hit that many artifact mana or rituals, so I would imprint a [[Brainstorm]] and cast the other copy of [[Brainstorm]]. If I find two mana then I can [[Tendrils of Agony]] or if it’s [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] then [[Burning Wish]] for [[Tendrils of Agony]]. If I don’t find enough mana, then I would [[Chain of Vapor]] the [[Wishclaw Talisman]] so the opponent couldn’t use it to assemble their combo.
[[Chrome Mox]] imprints a copy of [[Brainstorm]], and from there our [[Mox Opal]] is live and well. We can leverage the [[Chain of Vapor]] trick here to sacrifice our lands to generate mana with our [[Chrome Mox]] and [[Mox Opal]]. After tapping out to generate (do NOT sacrifice [[Lotus Petal]] yet) we can replay our [[Chrome Mox]] and [[Mox Opal]] again after using the for the [[Chain of Vapor]]. This increases our Storm by three and gives us access to the floating , any color mana from the [[Chrome Mox]], mana from the [[Mox Opal]] and a fourth mana from [[Lotus Petal]] to play [[Tendrils of Agony]] for a dozen.
SITUATION No. 2 — Doomsday
Often touted as the best combo deck in Legacy, [[Doomsday]] wears many masks. The core of the deck focuses on resolving the namesake card, [[Doomsday]]. With the printing of [[Thassa’s Oracle]], building piles has been condensed to a simpler science than in days of old. Because the requirements to put [[Doomsday]] in your deck are relatively small, there are many strategies surrounding it’s core card package. Sometimes, players will build a “tempo” variant with [[Murktide Regent]] and [[Baleful Strix]], with the goal of hedging against UR Delver (classically understood to be the deck’s worst matchup). Other times, players understand the need for speed — “turbo” builds exist here — often with the goal of crushing everything that isn’t UR Delver. However, starting with recent results in the Showcase Challenge from a Turbo [[Doomsday]] build, a new sideboard card has changed the combo landscape! [[Sheoldred, the Apocalypse]] is a card that can potentially swing the matchup [[Doomsday]] has against UR Delver into a more favorable position. Without getting caught up in the details here, this inclusion is making big waves. Turbo [[Doomsday]] can now be built with the non-UR Delver meta in mind, staying fast and efficient. When encounters with the S-tier menace are had, [[Sheoldred, the Apocalypse]] can fight back. Does this mean that [[Doomsday]] is now not only the best combo deck in Legacy but also in the running for the best deck overall? Only time will tell.
Tough are the matches played against [[Doomsday]] as The EPIC Storm. The deck embodies everything we want to avoid facing. Fast and efficient combo? Check. [[Force of Will]] and [[Force of Negation]] — often playsets of both? Check. Cantrips to see everything quickly and change plans when necessary? Check. The EPIC Storm is being pushed in multiple directions. On one hand, there is pressure to combo quickly before an opponent can cast [[Doomsday]]. On the other hand, playsets of [[Force of Will]], [[Force of Negation]], and [[Daze]] put a giant stop sign on those early attempts, suggesting instead that a longer game is needed. This tension is difficult to navigate. Finding the correct moment to attempt a win will depend on many in-game factors. How the opponent is casting cantrips, if mana is left unspent to hold open interaction, how aggressive discard spells are used. Reading those intangibles will make or break a game. [[Doomsday]] is one of our most difficult matchups, making wins that much sweeter when they do actually come around.
Because [[Doomsday]] is such a difficult matchup to navigate, micro-decisions can matter significantly. For this situation, we are in our turn two of a post-sideboard game. Our opponent is playing a Turbo [[Doomsday]] build. They have played a land and passed on their first turn. There is no direct line to victory at the moment, but our decisions lie in making the most of what we are given. With the ability to cast [[Echo of Eons]], [[Galvanic Relay]], or simply nothing, our plan needs to be based on how we think this game will play out. With the knowledge that threading the needle between speed and resiliency is how The EPIC Storm wins, what is the best way to do that?
When I think of a typical [[Doomsday]] list, I know they play some amount of countermagic and hand disruption. If I have a moment to go off, I’ll most likely take it as soon as possible (within reason) because as the longer the game goes, the more disruption they can draw into. As typically a GWx player, I would assume this matchup would be a race of who can go off first, with potentially more disruption along the way from the [[Doomsday]] side. The opponent has kept seven in a postboard game. This could mean many things. It could be a quick combo hand or it could be a slow hand with disruption. It doesn’t give too much away other than they know they can either most likely win the game with it, or stop me from winning before they can. Because of this, I feel if we have the shot to cast [[Echo of Eons]] into a line, we should just go for it. Here’s my line:
Play [[Bloodstained Mire]], fetch for [[Badlands]] and cast [[Rite of Flame]]. Fetch for [[Underground Sea]] off [[Misty Rainforest]] and cast [[Wishclaw Talisman]] using . Use the last floating to fetch for [[Echo of Eons]]. Cast [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]]. This might cause our opponent to cast a [[Force of Will]] which gives us an opportunity to blow them out with [[Veil of Summer]]. I think this encourages your opponent to counter [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] more than the line of castint [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] before you search with [[Wishclaw Talisman]]. Now you get to wheel using the [[Echo of Eons]]. The other option is leading on [[Veil of Summer]], which if it resolves is huge. If it doesn’t, it’s still one less piece of interaction your opponent has (and most likely would prompt me to still go off this turn).
Do you sometimes wish you could yell at your past self for playing dumb lines? That sums up where I am right now. Previously, I had attempted to resolve a [[Veil of Summer]]-protected [[Echo of Eons]] at this stage. Sometimes patience, even in one of the worst matchups The EPIC Storm has, is key. An [[Echo of Eons]], even a protected one, leaves a lot to chance at this stage. Giving up a copy of [[Wishclaw Talisman]] if our line doesn’t win can spell certain defeat against a deck as powerful as [[Doomsday]]. There is no room for slip ups like that. One note here is The EPIC Storm is not a deck that wants to go off as early as possible. While we are certainly capable of early wins, and indeed often thrive on them, there is a balance to wontonly casting the first engine card that comes across your hand. I definitely lost sight of that while playing this scenario
Instead of trying to be the first one out of the gate, we can spend this turn setting up. Playing out the [[Bloodstained Mire]] and [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] will allow us to fetch and cast the [[Wishclaw Talisman]] from hand — likely using an [[Underground Sea]] and [[Taiga]]. If at any point our opponent wants to interact with countermagic, either against the [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] or the [[Wishclaw Talisman]], we will happily use the [[Lotus Petal]] to protect with a [[Veil of Summer]]. If that doesn’t happen, we can attempt a protected [[Ad Nauseam]] on our next turn. The key takeaway is knowing the fine line between needing aggression and restraint in a given game or turn cycle.
I don’t think this decision is terribly difficult. I would simply play the [[Bloodstained Mire]], activate both fetchlands, play [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]], and then [[Wishclaw Talisman]]. If they play either [[Force of Will]] or [[Force of Negation]], we should cast [[Veil of Summer]]. Playing [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] out not only stops discard, but theoretically could allow us to play around fringe sideboard options such as [[Spell Pierce]]. I would not push the envelope, handing the [[Wishclaw Talisman]] over to [[Doomsday]] is just asking to lose the game. Especially against a deck that is as compact as them, but also due to the amount of interactive spells they have.
Unfortunately, the best card that the opponent could have here is an [[Opposition Agent]] off of a [[Dark Ritual]]. With these cards in hand, [[Opposition Agent]] is unbeatable, so we have to treat it as if it does not exist. I would just play out my cards here to play around discard spells and have a [[Veil of Summer]] protected [[Ad Nauseam]] next turn. If they [[Force of Will]] the [[Wishclaw Talisman]], I would protect it. This line mostly hopes that they do not have a way to win the game next turn.
I see no reason to go for anything this turn. I would use this turn as a setup and try to win with a more deterministic combo than [[Galvanic Relay]]. I would play out the [[Wishclaw Talisman]] and [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] and just pass leaving up [[Veil of Summer]] or cast it against a counterspell. This protects against discard and counterspells and wins on turn three. If the opponent has a turn two win then so be it.
I think in this case, we need to play out our permanents. Here, I would play our [[Bloodstained Mire]] and crack it along with our [[Misty Rainforest]] to get [[Underground Sea]] and [[Taiga]]. Another land combination you could choose is [[Bayou]] and [[Volcanic Island]]. Either way, you are still giving yourself access to your four colors of mana. I would then cast our [[Wishclaw Talisman]] and hold up the [[Lotus Petal]] to cast [[Veil of Summer]] if needed, to assure the resolution of [[Wishclaw Talisman]]. If we do have to spend our [[Veil of Summer]] to resolve our [[Wishclaw Talisman]], it will be best to play our [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] from our hand so we can avoid a [[Thoughtseize]] effect from taking it away on their turn. In this case, the follow-up turn highly depends on our draw step. Ideally, we would want to put an [[Ad Nauseam]] on the stack. This can be accomplished if we get to keep our [[Rite of Flame]] through the turn cycle.
SITUATION No. 3 — UR Delver
[[Delver of Secrets]] and friends have been the best thing to do in Legacy since Innistrad’s printing of the aggressive one-drop creature. Instead of just being the archetypical resource-denial “tempo” decks of old, UR Delver is now a powerful mid- and late-game strategy as well. [[Expressive Iteration]] and [[Mystic Sanctuary]] allow this efficient deck to play the long game. The classic starts of [[Delver of Secrets]] + [[Daze]] + [[Wasteland]] still exist, putting the pressure on opponents early and often. Once the initial threats have been addressed, [[Murktide Regent]] closes the door and [[Expressive Iteration]] refuels to keep trying again. There are multiple reasons that UR Delver is at the top of the proverbial food chain. Despite the target on its back, the deck is still putting up results each week. You can’t help but appreciate how absolutely rock solid this deck is.
Luckily for us, UR Delver has a glaring weakness. The sideboard of UR Delver has to be tuned to an expected metagame. Because of this, Storm strategies can take a backseat to other decks deemed more important to prepare for. If UR Delver is gunning for Storm, there is nothing we can do but take the beating prepared for us. If the sideboarding strategies keep up as they have been, Storm decks are not the priority. Stack interaction and quick threats are certainly enough to beat The EPIC Storm in some cases. But because we have the ability to overpower much of their countermagic, there are real chances to come to the table with a plan to beat UR Delver.
With the new sideboard of v13.3, the mapping against UR Delver has become quite lean. Not having [[Carpet of Flowers]] to swap with [[Rite of Flame]] means the goal is to just be an efficient [[Galvanic Relay]] deck. Most UR Delver decks are not playing [[Flusterstorm]] at the moment. Cards that do need to be on the minds of The EPIC Storm pilots are [[Counterbalance]], [[Maddening Hex]], [[Surgical Extraction]], and even rare cases like [[Ashiok, Dream Render]] and [[Blood Moon]]. Of course, traditional counter magic like [[Force of Will]], [[Force of Negation]], [[Daze]], and the “blast” effects of [[Pyroblast]]/[[Hydroblast]] also exist. Matches against UR Delver are certainly not free. They can be successful though, with careful planning and tight play
Many game actions have been taken in the game before our final situation presented itself. This is a sideboard game and it is our turn five. We spent the last two turns chaining copies of [[Galvanic Relay]] together. Our opponent has been resource light, only finding land number two on the previous turn. But it afforded them the ability to land the [[Counterbalance]] we face across the board. The previous turn resulted in a [[Thoughtseize]] revealing [[Pyroblast]], [[Daze]], and [[Force of Will]]. [[Expressive Iteration]] was discarded so that our following turn could work off of known information. There are a lot of moving pieces with this one. With one piece of counter magic available in hand and an active [[Counterbalance]] on the board, how do we play out this turn?
This is a tricky one as I really want to start with [[Abrupt Decay]] on [[Counterbalance]]. That, however, takes two out of our three available mana (including our only available green mana). By starting with [[Abrupt Decay]], it leaves us very vulnerable to the [[Daze]] in hand. I was tunnel-versioned at first into ‘losing our hand to [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]]’ but then realized the cards we care about are in exile. Thankfully, we don’t care about [[Echo of Eons]] being discarded, so I like this line using the [[Wishclaw Talisman]] in play to find another [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]]. I don’t have a winning line as it depends on what we find off the [[Echo of Eons]], but here’s my best line:
We [[Abrupt Decay]] the [[Counterbalance]] leaving [[Badlands]] open. Using our last mana we [[Wishclaw Talisman]] for [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] which we can presume gets hit by [[Daze]]. We can then cast our [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] from exile as our opponent no longer has a blue card to pitch to [[Force of Will]]), then casting [[Echo of Eons]] into seven fresh cards. This does give our opponent a chance to also draw into further interaction, but we haven’t played a land yet and with just a land and another [[Chrome Mox]] or [[Lotus Petal]] we can most likely go off with [[Veil of Summer]] protection. I feel this line puts us in the best position to win.
Oh boy. Somewhere out there is a flowchart on how to properly play this turn out. Hopefully we can follow it in a way that leads to victory. [[Counterbalance]] is the key unknown here. I want to do different things depending on if there is a zero- or one-mana value card on top of their library (if there’s a two-drop there, this is a non-issue). Let’s think about it a little deeper. We have 18 minutes on the clock and using up some of it to be careful can be a good thing. If there is a one-mana value spell on top of the library, we can cast [[Abrupt Decay]] and we only need to worry about a single point of interaction. One that we have covered with [[Veil of Summer]]. Things get more interesting if there is a zero-mana value card on top. The only way to find out without major losses to our strategy is by casting [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]]. One of three things happen:
NEITHER ZERO- OR ONE-DROP REVEALED: This is the easiest of the three options. Just cast our mana-producing spells into a protected [[Ad Nauseam]] or [[Echo of Eons]]. We even have the option to protect our [[Veil of Summer]] with another copy using the on-board [[Wishclaw Talisman]]. It’s like stealing candy from a baby.
ZERO-DROP REVEALED: Things get a little harder here. Our [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] was countered. Thankfully, we can cast [[Dark Ritual]] to power out an [[Abrupt Decay]] on the [[Counterbalance]]. Then cast [[Rite of Flame]] (it makes ) and use the on-board [[Wishclaw Talisman]] to get the [[Bayou]] from the deck in an effort to resolve the [[Veil of Summer]] in exile. Assuming it meets with a [[Force of Will]], we know our opponent is out of gas. This frees us to play the [[Wishclaw Talisman]] from exile, use it to tutor another copy of [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]], and Flashback the [[Echo of Eons]] in our hand (of note, we are only ONE Storm away from lethal [[Tendrils of Agony]] if our opponent casts a spell).
ONE-DROP REVEALED: Our [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] will either resolve or be met with the [[Force of Will]] from our opponent’s hand once they see their [[Counterbalance]] trigger did not counter the artifact. Either way, we can then spend two mana from [[Underground Sea]] and [[Taiga]] to cast [[Abrupt Decay]] on the pesky enchantment. With only one land available, we have a choice of [[Dark Ritual]] or [[Rite of Flame]]. Because [[Rite of Flame]] is obviously a better card, we can cast it and use some of the floating mana to tutor another copy of [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] with our [[Wishclaw Talisman]]. From there, the turn proceeds like before with the Flashback of [[Echo of Eons]].
Finally, a good one! I would start on [[Abrupt Decay]] destroying the [[Counterbalance]]. After this, I would activate the [[Wishclaw Talisman]] for [[Bayou]] at this point. Play the [[Bayou]] and then play [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]], assuming that it resolves, we’ll cast [[Veil of Summer]]. At this point, we’ll add using the [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]]. Cast [[Dark Ritual]], use [[Wishclaw Talisman]] to search for [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] and then play it. Cast and then sacrifice [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] for . At this point, cast [[Echo of Eons]] floating .
Casting this [[Abrupt Decay]] is rather tempting, but doing so limits the mana options significantly. I would start by casting [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] with the hope that they would reveal their top card. Depending on what that card is, it changes my plays a lot. If it is zero, I would start casting the rituals and then the exiled [[Wishclaw Talisman]]. If the opponent uses their [[Force of Will]], I would cast [[Veil of Summer]] and then use one of the copies of [[Wishclaw Talisman]] to find another copy of [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] in order to cast [[Echo of Eons]] with the [[Tendrils of Agony]] still floating in exile. If there is a one-mana value card on top of their deck, I would cast the [[Abrupt Decay]] with the [[Badlands]] and the [[Taiga]]. I would then crack the [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] for Green and cast [[Echo of Eons]]. This lets us cast the [[Veil of Summer]] if they try to counter the [[Echo of Eons]] or just cast it after to protect the rituals that we draw for the [[Tendrils of Agony]] that is still floating in exile.
I would lead off with the [[Abrupt Decay]] on [[Counterbalance]]. I think if we play another card and the opponent reveals a one then we will be too pinched on resources, so to guarantee there’s not a one mana card on top I would cast [[Abrupt Decay]]. I would then cast [[Dark Ritual]]. If that resolved I could play out [[Wishclaw Talisman]]. If either of those two are countered then I could use [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] with [[Echo of Eons]] in hand. Even if they weren’t countered I would still do this to get the [[Force of Will]] and [[Daze]] out of hand since there is a [[Pyroblast]] for the future turns anyway. This gives me more resources to work with than the opponent over the next several turns to try and find a win.
This turn can start in many different ways but rather than test the [[Counterbalance]], I lean more towards removing it immediately with [[Abrupt Decay]] with our [[Taiga]] and [[Badlands]]. We then cast the [[Dark Ritual]] from exile with our remaining land. If they choose to counter this we can freely spin the wheel on [[Echo of Eons]] without losing our stacked exile zone. If they don’t counter the [[Dark Ritual]], we can play our second [[Wishclaw Talisman]] into the [[Force of Will]] and still have [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] and [[Echo of Eons]] available. If the second [[Wishclaw Talisman]] resolves, it’s a “choose your own adventure” type of turn into the exiled [[Tendrils of Agony]] for lethal.
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Jordan Karim is a biochemistry lab manager that enjoys solving questions about the microscopic as well as about Legacy combo turns. In his free time Jordan can be found playing Magic with friends, watching movies/TV, or searching for the next tasty new restaurant.
His favorite Magic card is Dark Ritual and his favorite deck is God-Pharaoh’s Gift from Hour of Devastation standard.
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This awesome mini token set is printed on actual playing cards! A superior smooth 330gsm quality card-stock with a high-quality finish!
These tokens are literally half the size actual cards (44.45 × 63.5mm) and will not fit in standard size sleeves! But you wouldn’t want them to any way — they’re double-sided and have creature tokens on the backs!