[[Mind’s Desire]]. A tool that Storm fans have dreamt about for years. Not since 2015 has Legacy experienced an unbanning: back then the community got to play with [[Worldgorger Dragon]] and [[Black Vise]] again. Players have been swept by a wave of excitement! New and old Storm decks alike are getting to test with a card that has only been seen in Commander, Vintage, and Historic (Cube too). Fittingly, The EPIC Storm can play the ever-adaptable role it continues to excel in. [[Mind’s Desire]] just so happens to make the best Storm deck even better!
For the moment, Legacy seems to be in an exciting place. First and foremost, The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-Earth has continued to impress. Certainly [[The One Ring]] and [[Orcish Bowmasters]] are good, but the land cyclers at Common have also been incredible. Dimir [[Death’s Shadow]] decks have taken on a “Scam” role with [[Grief]] + [[Reanimate]] that pairs well with [[Troll of Khazad-dûm]] to present heavy disruption alongside an unblockable threat. [[Lórien Revealed]] can serve as part of a mana base for control and combo decks alike while also allowing a rebuild in the later parts of a game. [[Ancestral Recall]] is good even when it costs five mana (or none when [[Omniscience]] is on the board). The real reason for the season is [[Mind’s Desire]]
Do you want to know a secret? The EPIC Storm’s super power is that it is not defined by specific cards. Certainly, the deck has featured many of the same cards throughout its lifetime. Almost all of the marque cards have been rotated or changed out at one point or another (with the exception of [[Burning Wish]]). That’s because the secret super power of The EPIC Storm is that the deck’s identity is ADAPTABILITY. In other words, the deck can take the best Storm cards and play them with a bit of tweaking. This is exactly what happened with [[Mind’s Desire]]. After pretty exhaustive testing on the part of the team, [[Ad Nauseam]] looked like it didn’t fit in the deck’s current construction if [[Mind’s Desire]] was to be incorporated into the list — something that was a goal for the team. The current list, The EPIC Storm v14.8 is still being worked on actively, so expect changes throughout this testing process, but being able to present the “Triple Threat” of three [[Galvanic Relay]], three [[Echo of Eons]], and three [[Mind’s Desire]] was a major turning point in deck design. The team is very excited about moving forward with this new tech and explore what it has to offer! Let’s start with three awesome new situations for this month.
(MTGO: Killabee | Twitter: @Stahlkarnickel1)
I’m a Sociologist/Data Analyst from Würzburg, Germany. Magic was a steady companion for me since early 2000s, but it took me until late in 2021 before I discovered eternal formats — especially Legacy — to be my sweet spot for brewing. I am known for designing and piloting “The Riddler” and various other Combo brews that I publish on Twitter and Discord. Other Storm is not my strong suit, but I like the challenge!
the epic Storm
- 4 [[Brainstorm]]
- 4 [[Veil of Summer]]
- 4 [[Wishclaw Talisman]]
- 4 [[Burning Wish]]
- 3 [[Galvanic Relay]]
- 3 [[Mind’s Desire]]
- 3 [[Echo of Eons]]
- 4 [[Rite of Flame]]
- 4 [[Dark Ritual]]
- 4 [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]]
- 4 [[Lotus Petal]]
- 4 [[Mox Opal]]
- 4 [[Chrome Mox]]
- 4 [[Bloodstained Mire]]
- 1 [[Scalding Tarn]]
- 1 [[Verdant Catacombs]]
- 1 [[Underground Sea]]
- 1 [[Volcanic Island]]
- 1 [[Badlands]]
- 1 [[Bayou]]
- 1 [[Taiga]]
- 3 [[Thoughtseize]]
- 2 [[Abrupt Decay]]
- 2 [[Chain of Vapor]]
- 1 [[Grapeshot]]
- 1 [[Galvanic Relay]]
- 1 [[Empty the Warrens]]
- 1 [[Tendrils of Agony]]
- 1 [[Mind’s Desire]]
- 1 [[Echo of Eons]]
- 1 [[Pulverize]]
- 1 [[Peer into the Abyss]]
SITUATION No. 1 — Cephalid Breakfast
While not down and out, Cephalid Breakfast has seen better days. A combo deck focused on resolving two one-toughness creatures in a format with [[Orcish Bowmasters]] is not quite the issue. Cephalid Breakfast can beat [[Lightning Bolt]], [[Swords to Plowshares]], and all kinds of cheaper or more efficient removal. The real struggle affecting the deck is the meta shifts that have come alongside [[Orcish Bowmasters]]. Black is no longer a fringe-playable color in Legacy, it’s just everywhere. One particular example is Dimir [[Death’s Shadow]] and the high numbers of [[Surgical Extraction]] they play. Cephalid Breakfast is good at playing around several points of interaction, but even they can be overwhelmed. Players have often relied on the backup plan of [[Urza’s Saga]] [[Construct Token]] beat-downs, but that is less effective these days. One nice thing is that the deck simply does not care about [[The One Ring]] at all. Protection from everything does not stop an opponent from winning the game, a point that Cephalid Breakfast capitalizes on. All told the deck is now just a solid choice to make, not the top-tier threat it was a few months ago.
The EPIC Storm and Cephalid Breakfast have a matchup that has not changed all that much with the recent meta shifts. Unsurprisingly, the deck with [[Force of Will]] and a quick combo win can be difficult for Storm decks to combat. The key to winning as The EPIC Storm has seemed to be altering how the game is played. Instead of planning for a turn-two win every single game, treating Cephalid Breakfast like a bad control deck with [[Orim’s Chant]] can go a long way to addressing weaknesses. The [[Force of Will]] deck typically slows down post-board, allowing breathing room to construct a protected combo turn. It is not a simple match by any stretch of the imagination, but properly preparing for it with boarding and mindset changes can prepare a pilot for success.
Our first situation begins on turn three of game one. A [[Lion’s Eye Diamond]] was drawn for the turn. Our opponent spent their second turn casting [[Brainstorm]] and [[Shuko]], the threat being a turn three win attempt if they have [[Cephalid Illusionist]] in hand. They are currently tapped out, perhaps it is time to take advantage of that. Several possibilities are available for our turn, which one gives us the best route to victory?
SITUATION No. 2 — Grixis Delver
History tends to repeat itself, does it not? Such is the case here with the re-introduction of Grixis Delver as a major player in the Legacy metagame. Previous versions of the deck (circa 2018) were on top of the Legacy format with [[Deathrite Shaman]] and [[Gitaxian Probe]]. Those days are long over, but Grixis Delver now comes back with a fury, [[Orcish Bowmasters]] is single-handedly reviving the old classic. The addition of another color in the [[Delver of Secrets]] shell always needs to be made with caution. Particularly in [[Wasteland]] matchups, being cut from an entire secondary color can be devastating to a pilot’s game plan, so the addition needs to be particularly good. Short answer: it is. Outside of [[Orcish Bowmasters]], the splash includes cards like [[Sheoldred’s Edict]], [[Fatal Push]], and [[Plague Engineer]]. These are cards hardly worth the splash, but they are available to you if you are in the colors.
In the current metagame, [[Null Rod]] is seeing increased play across many sideboards. Sometimes even up to two copies or more! The EPIC Storm has always planned to board in some removal for fair Blue strategies, but now it’s more important than ever. The other concerning aspect of the deck is an increase in [[Surgical Extraction]] being played. With no main deck win conditions, [[Burning Wish]] can be a choke point if it ever hits the graveyard. Planning ahead and ensuring that it never happens is one way to approach it. Another is by boarding in the [[Tendrils of Agony]]. Both are fine, but in this surprisingly hostile meta, it has made sense to have a main deck route to victory. Just don’t forget about it when you are comboing off!
-1 [[Chrome Mox]], -1 [[Mox Opal]], -1 [[Echo of Eons]]; +2 [[Abrupt Decay]], +1 [[Tendrils of Agony]]
Our [[Echo of Eons]] in the face of two copies of [[Orcish Bowmasters]] was very bold, but it resolved. It has paid off so far! We are facing down a lethal board-state in our fourth turn of the game — a 16-power [[Orc Army]] certainly counts as lethal against our six life. The two cards we have in Exile are [[Echo of Eons]] and [[Burning Wish]] that grabbed the aforementioned wheel. A win needs to occur this turn; what do we need to make this happen?
SITUATION No. 3 — Grixis Delver
Second verse, same as the first, but a whole lot louder and a whole lot worse. Grixis Delver rears its head again!
With the prevalence of [[Underground Sea]] decks in the format, non-counterspell disruption has also increased. [[Veil of Summer]] is good against [[Thoughtseize]], but it can only do so much. The true strength of The EPIC Storm’s newest iteration is the ability to secure an on-board [[Wishclaw Talisman]] and use it to put an “uncounterable” [[Mind’s Desire]] on the stack. Uncounterable in that the Storm trigger and original copy is put on the stack without going through a choke point of counterable tutors (i.e. [[Infernal Tutor]] and [[Burning Wish]]). In this way at least, our engine is very difficult to disrupt. Grixis Delver also packs several copies of [[Null Rod]] as discussed earlier, but these can be addressed with time if we are given it.
While not a lethal boardstate, the opposite battlefield is quickly becoming a problem. While our opponent is tapped low, it may be time to attempt a win. We just untapped into our fourth turn in game one after our opponent cast a [[Ponder]] that shuffled their library — no guaranteed flip for [[Delver of Secrets]] thankfully. Our draw was a copy of [[Echo of Eons]]. With two copies of [[Wishclaw Talisman]] at our disposal, what sequence of actions should we take to maximize success here?
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