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1  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 13, 2015, 02:26:20 pm
It was also a real player while Mental Misstep dominated Legacy and the fact that it's banned in modern for being OP is evidence of how good it is.

The Modern banned list is not a reliable source of data for what cards are "OP." They ban cards for different reasons, or sometimes no reason.

I think AV is probably too slow for Vintage unless you can put it on the stack with a different effect like cascade.
2  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 05, 2015, 04:59:01 pm
In the old days when Stax was tier 1 in Vintage, it was normal to play 16 lands in fast Drain decks, and even 18 lands in Oath. It was essential vs. spheres and also very good against Wasteland and soft counters from Fish decks. This type of deck depends on having access to UU as often as possible. I am trying 16 lands.

13 Control
4 Force of Will         
4 Mana Drain         
3 Mental Misstep     
2 Thoughtseize                     

2 Answers
1 Hurkyl's Recall     
1 Abrupt Decay                     

2 Tinker
1 Tinker         
1 Blightsteel Colossus                 

6 Gifts
2 Gifts Ungiven         
1 Yawgmoth's Will     
1 Time Vault         
1 Voltaic Key         
1 Regrowth                 

13 Draw
3 Fact or Fiction     
1 Jace, the Mind Sculptor   
1 Thirst for Knowledge     
1 Time Walk         
1 Demonic Tutor         
1 Merchant Scroll     
1 Ponder         
1 Vampiric Tutor     
1 Mystical Tutor     
1 Ancestral Recall     
1 Brainstorm                     

8 Artifact Mana
1 Black Lotus         
1 Mana Crypt         
1 Sol Ring         
1 Mox Pearl         
1 Mox Sapphire         
1 Mox Jet         
1 Mox Ruby         
1 Mox Emerald                     

16 Lands
1 Tolarian Academy     
3 Underground Sea     
3 Tropical Island     
2 Island         
1 Snow-Covered Island     
2 Polluted Delta     
2 Flooded Strand     
1 Misty Rainforest     
1 Scalding Tarn   
3  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 04, 2015, 04:19:53 am
Mana Vault has been in most of my Gifts decks in testing thus far, except the Rector Omniscience one. As Steve stated, it is fantastic against Workshops and/or with Voltaic Key in play, but it is also very good at helping you race against things like Dredge (or control-combo decks), which is very relevant when most of us are trimming Dredge hate from the sideboard because we're pretending these are very fast combo decks (they're not). I think if you're playing Key/Vault there's zero reason not to play Vault, other than being obstinate. The only reason I don't play it in Rector Omniscience is because after a lot of testing I cut it for Ancient Tombs (I wanted repeatable mana acceleration to cast multiple expensive threats early, and Tomb does that better, albeit at a cost of 2 life). Depending on your configuration Ancient Tomb might be worth a look main deck as well, but not if you're running stuff like Drain where you want to have lots of blue mana at all times.

EDIT, just saw this:
I like your idea.  You may have something there.  

Just wanted to point out some possible ways to deal with Jace:

Maelstrom Pulse
Hero's Downfall
Pithing Needle
Snapcaster Mage
Rushing River
The best ways in a BUG shell to deal with Jace would probably be Vendilion Clique and/or Notion Thief. Both are very good against Jace decks.

I considered Tomb but yes it does interfere with leaving UU up often.

Regarding Mana Vault, the argument from Ichorid is a very good one. Similar to MUD, though, it depends on what kind of decks you expect to see your metagame. I am not sure if there is a "normal" metagame, but in my area there are few of either, which might be one reason I am testing without it.
4  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 04, 2015, 01:12:10 am
I have played a lot with Mana Vault. It is a borderline card because you need the mana AFTER the gifts, not just to cast it. One vault doesn't solve the mana problem.

That i can sort of agree with. But my first thought regarding your list was that it looked really clunky with so many 4-mana spells and a lack of mana acceleration to cast them. I am strongly considering cutting down on jaces and snapcasters in my list for the reason that they require too much mana in an already clunky deck.

I think 6 4cc spells could be fine. 3 fact, 2 gifts, 1 jace could work with 16 land. I have been trying that. I haven't seen any good "fast" versions of this deck. I think getting up to turn 3 or 4 may be the best way to play this deck now that we have less consistent blue decks.
5  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 03, 2015, 11:55:28 pm
Well I mentioned on the last page that 7 may be too many for the 4cc spot. I have considered cutting a Jace for a land.

I have played a lot with Mana Vault. It is a borderline card because you need the mana AFTER the gifts, not just to cast it. One vault doesn't solve the mana problem.
6  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 03, 2015, 10:42:14 pm
You asked for reasons, I supplied a half dozen.

For Gifts decks that don't run Tinker, I suppose it would be more arguable.  But yours not only runs Tinker, but has a ridiculously expensive mana curve.  I don't think your deck, as presented, is viable.  You have 3 Facts, and 2 gifts, and 2 Jace.  That doesn't even make sense on the face of it.

EDIT: It's true I haven't won any tournaments with Gifts recently, but I have won many tournaments with Gifts, and there are more compelling reasons to run Mana Vault than ever: namely, Lodestone Golem.    

Actually, what you did was list some very obvious other cards that interact with artifacts. Anyone that has played Vintage for a week could figure them out. You haven't contributed anything.

Well, I actually pointed out a few things that weren't quite simple math, like important Gifts packages that require Mana Vault.  But if that isn't compelling enough to you, I'll simply add that I've done alot of testing recently, and Mana Vault has been a top performer across the board, but it's especially important against Workshops in the current metagame.  Mana Vault has won me multiple games that no other card in that slot likely would have. 

Moreover, just because the reasons are "obvious" or easy to figure out, doesn't mean they don't apply.  Reasons are reasons whether they are obvious or not. 

Well depite your boorish posting, your opinion has been noted. I am sure you will dazzle everyone with your upcoming masterpiece about Mana Vault. My opinion is that +2 colorless mana may not be worth a card in this new version of the deck, and I have cut it.
7  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 03, 2015, 10:05:02 pm
You asked for reasons, I supplied a half dozen.

For Gifts decks that don't run Tinker, I suppose it would be more arguable.  But yours not only runs Tinker, but has a ridiculously expensive mana curve.  I don't think your deck, as presented, is viable.  You have 3 Facts, and 2 gifts, and 2 Jace.  That doesn't even make sense on the face of it.

EDIT: It's true I haven't won any tournaments with Gifts recently, but I have won many tournaments with Gifts, and there are more compelling reasons to run Mana Vault than ever: namely, Lodestone Golem.    

Actually, what you did was list some very obvious other cards that interact with artifacts. Anyone that has played Vintage for a week could figure them out. You haven't contributed anything.
8  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 03, 2015, 09:51:56 pm
@Machinus, your list has seven 4cc blue spells (3 fact, 2 gifts, and 2 jace).  That mana curve seems suspect to me.  In an era where 4cc spells are more difficult to cast than ever, that seems excessive, especially with your lack of mana acceleration beyond Mana Drain.  Your list doesn't even have Mana Vault.  

There are not many more accelerators that are good enough to maindeck. Mana Vault is an ineffective source of mana.

Couldn't disagree more.  Casting Gifts with Mana Vault is more than worthwhile both back in the day and present.  I
 
Mana Vault is simply too good to omit.

Couldn't disagree more. Mana Vault can be omitted just fine. Maybe your upcoming breakthrough article will enlighten us with reasoning.

I don't need to write an article to explain why Mana Vault is probably mandatory in a Gifts list with 7 4cc blue spells.  It's pretty obvious to most.

I just gave you reasons, but I will add to them:

1) Mana Vault accelerates out Gifts, Tinker, and Yawg Will

2) It's fantastic against Workshops

3) It can be untapped by Key, so it's never dead even when tapped

4) It boosts Academy, even when tapped.

5) It can be untapped with Hurkyl's, and even generate mana that way.

6) Not to mention, Mana Vault is important for the "mana" Gifts package.  If you get Lotus, Mana Vault, Crypt, and Academy, you can basically make Gifts mana neutral to set up a huge play.  

7) Mana Vault was also a key staple in Gifts lists of the past: http://www.starcitygames.com/article/11209_Gifts-Dissected--Part-II.html

Mana Vault appeared in roughly 88% of the Gifts lists that top 8ed Vintage tournaments at the time of that writing (41/47 decks).

Conclusion:

The burden of proof is on the player arguing why Mana Vault shouldn't be included, not on why it should be.  




There is no burden of proof. I've played Gifts for a long time and I don't have to play Mana Vault. It has pros and cons, and without Thirst and Brainstorm it might not be good enough to play. So far I haven't seen you winning any big tournaments on the basis of including Mana Vault in your Gifts deck so let's not get ahead of ourselves.
9  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 03, 2015, 09:34:31 pm
@Machinus, your list has seven 4cc blue spells (3 fact, 2 gifts, and 2 jace).  That mana curve seems suspect to me.  In an era where 4cc spells are more difficult to cast than ever, that seems excessive, especially with your lack of mana acceleration beyond Mana Drain.  Your list doesn't even have Mana Vault.  

There are not many more accelerators that are good enough to maindeck. Mana Vault is an ineffective source of mana.

Couldn't disagree more.  Casting Gifts with Mana Vault is more than worthwhile both back in the day and present.
 
Mana Vault is simply too good to omit.

Couldn't disagree more. Mana Vault can be omitted just fine. Maybe your upcoming breakthrough article will enlighten us with reasoning.


It is a 1cc artifact so it evades Chalice @ 1

Most of the time 1cc artifacts do not evade Chalice at 1.
10  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 03, 2015, 07:25:39 pm
@Machinus, your list has seven 4cc blue spells (3 fact, 2 gifts, and 2 jace).  That mana curve seems suspect to me.  In an era where 4cc spells are more difficult to cast than ever, that seems excessive, especially with your lack of mana acceleration beyond Mana Drain.  Your list doesn't even have Mana Vault. 

There are not many more accelerators that are good enough to maindeck. Mana Vault is an ineffective source of mana. Using it to cast Gifts or Fact or Fiction means you cannot use it to cast the spells you draw. It's more effective when you have ways to get rid of it when you don't need it, and without Thirst or Brainstorm it's not as good as other cards. Mana Vault won't solve that problem.

It may be the case that there are too many expensive spells. This style of deck wants to hold open UU to delay the opponent and ideally generate drain mana to start going off. Sorcery speed draw spells make this strategy harder to execute, and the best instants are restricted. So you have to play with the cards in the pool.
11  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 03, 2015, 06:20:29 pm
2x Deathrite Shaman or Noble Hierarch (more reliable mana generation) can go a long way in both accelerating into Gifts/Fact or Fiction and helping the difficult Shop match. 

The problem with this is that it triggers oath and is not a good card in the late game. On turn 1 it's a good way to establish mana, but the other abilities are not worth the mana and time to use them in this deck.
12  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 02, 2015, 09:28:00 pm
I don't necessarily believe that Jace should be in the deck at all.  Like you said about not having Merchant Scroll, Brainstorm, or Thirst for Knowledge, you need cards to bridge the gap between turn 1 and Gifts Ungiven.

Jace is a strong way to generate card advantage over multiple turns. I would rather have Thirst back, but we have to play with the cards in the pool. The brainstorm effect is also really strong in this deck since you can fetch and tutor to get rid of the cards you don't want. Even the turn you play it, you can bounce a threat or stock up on free counters.

It's also your secondary win condition after Colossus, which is actually quite important since Tendrils is much worse in a MUD-heavy metagame.
13  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 02, 2015, 07:09:26 pm
I like your idea.  You may have something there. 

Just wanted to point out some possible ways to deal with Jace:

Maelstrom Pulse
Hero's Downfall
Pithing Needle
Snapcaster Mage
Rushing River

Pulse and Downfall cost 3 so they are much worse than REB. Pithing Needle would be great but we also run 2 Jaces Smile  It may just be that Green doesn't have the same efficiency to kill Jace.
14  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 02, 2015, 06:43:47 pm
Hello gentlemen,

I've been testing and brewing more, and I have come up with a new design that I like. Back in the old Gifts days, there were 4 brainstorms and 4 thirst, so Gifts really was just needed to combo off. Since we don't have those kind of draw spells available now, there is a lot more pressure to use Gifts as a draw spell when you aren't sure you have the mana and permission to force through the win.

I don't believe Gush is compatible with the mana-hungry Gifts strategy (at least as a core engine card). However, rather than casting Gifts for value, there is another spell that performs a similar function, but works MUCH better as a card advantage generator, and has huge synergy with Mana Drain and the rest of the tutors in this deck.

Green Gifts 2015:

4 Force of Will         
4 Mana Drain         
3 Mental Misstep     
2 Thoughtseize                     
1 Hurkyl's Recall     
1 Abrupt Decay                     
1 Tinker         
1 Blightsteel Colossus                 
2 Gifts Ungiven         
1 Yawgmoth's Will     
1 Time Vault         
1 Voltaic Key         
1 Regrowth                 
3 Fact or Fiction     
2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor   
1 Thirst for Knowledge     
1 Time Walk         
1 Demonic Tutor         
1 Merchant Scroll     
1 Ponder         
1 Vampiric Tutor     
1 Mystical Tutor     
1 Ancestral Recall     
1 Brainstorm                     
1 Black Lotus         
1 Mana Crypt         
1 Sol Ring         
1 Mox Pearl         
1 Mox Sapphire         
1 Mox Jet         
1 Mox Ruby         
1 Mox Emerald                     
1 Tolarian Academy     
3 Underground Sea     
3 Tropical Island     
2 Island         
1 Snow-Covered Island     
2 Polluted Delta     
1 Flooded Strand     
1 Misty Rainforest     
1 Scalding Tarn         
           
SB:           
2 Hurkyl's Recall     
2 Nature's Claim     
1 Trygon Predator     
1 Toxic Deluge         
2 Abrupt Decay         
1 Batterskull
3 Grafdigger's Cage     
1 Flusterstorm
1 Mindbreak Trap     
1 Blue Elemental Blast     


In this version of the deck, the weirdest card you have to play is Regrowth (which is quite good with FoF and Gifts), and when using it to combo off, the opponent will not give you Yawgmoth's will, which means your kill costs 6 mana. The pile is Vault+Key+Will+Regrowth, out of which they will give you Key+Regrowth, meaning your kill costs 1G+2+1+1. Your win condition is Colossus, or Jace activating if they remove colossus.

The biggest loss when playing Green over Red is REB in the sideboard, but between black discard and blue permission there is more than enough disruption. The only functionality which is missing is a cheap way to kill Jace in UBG. However, you gain great tools like Nature's Claim, Abrupt Decay, Trygon Predator, or even Pernicious Deed. I think it's possible to play 4 colors, but in my experience it is best not to push your manabase since you are already heavily depending on UU and this deck is very mana-intensive.

Mana Drain into Fact or Fiction used to be one of the most dominating plays in Vintage. I am not sure if it is still as good in 2015, but it is a plan that goes very well into the Gifts shell and may be the perfect setup card for your Gifts. If you can get just one combo piece in your hand before casting Gifts, your subsequent piles will be much harder for the opponent to split.
15  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 02, 2015, 06:19:19 pm
Steve has said that everyone else's lists are bad, and that his list is much better. He has, in fact, claimed that the archetype will be defined by his work. Maybe Steve will redefine Gifts. Maybe Steve will do for gifts this time what Brassman did for it last time. Maybe Steve's Gifts Ungiven decklist will cure Abu Jafar of being a Leper while causing all three factions of the Three Kingdoms to join hands and sing in harmony.

Who knows? Since we can't see his decklist, we can't verify any of that. But what we can see is that this thread is for discussing Gifts Ungiven, not Steve Menendian. Please keep it that way.

Steve can start his own thread for self-promotion and hype over meaningless card choices. This one was doing fine until he crashed it.
16  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 02, 2015, 04:50:46 am
The Gifts lists I've seen so far here and elsewhere are remarkably uninspired and underwhelming.  I'm disappointed in not only how little creativity I've seen in Gifts lists in over two weeks of experimentation, but how badly these lists seem to actually attack the format.  

I'm publishing my Gifts lists on eternal centrals Gifts week this week (in a free article). It only took me a day or two to brew up a much stronger list than any I've seen published, and it's been testing extremely well against Delver (esp recently) and Workshops.

I'm certain that my Gifts list will be the model for the archetype going forward.  #shotscalled

I'm doing well with my list. I think so far this thread has been pretty positive and interesting until your post.
17  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: February 01, 2015, 03:31:54 pm
I made 11th at the Invitational yesterday with this list. It was a cut to top 16 and Mr. Seals put me away for the second time in a row in elimination rounds.

I was very pleased with it all day. The maindeck is about 58-59 cards correct, and the sideboard is pretty rough draft-ish -- I didn't have enough time to test it thoroughly, unfortunately. It's favored against everything that isn't running Mentor, Delver, Pyromancer, or Deathrite.


Grixis Gifts Control:

4 Force of Will
3 Mana Drain
3 Mental Misstep

4 Dark Confidant
3 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
1 Snapcaster Mage

1 Demonic Tutor
1 Vampiric Tutor
1 Mystical Tutor
1 Merchant Scroll
1 Ancestral Recall
2 Preordain
1 Thirst for Knowledge
1 Brainstorm

2 Gifts Ungiven
1 Time Walk
1 Tinker
1 Yawgmoth's Will
1 Time Vault
1 Voltaic Key
1 Blightsteel Colossus

2 Lightning Bolt

1 Black Lotus
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Mox Jet
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Emerald
1 Mana Crypt
1 Sol Ring
2 Island
4 Scalding Tarn
3 Underground Sea
2 Volcanic Island
1 Misty Rainforest
1 Flooded Strand
1 Tolarian Academy
1 Library of Alexandria

Sideboard:
2 Ingot Chewer
1 Mountain
2 Goblin Welder
1 Lightning Bolt
1 Engineered Explosives
1 Flusterstorm
2 Red Elemental Blast
3 Grafdigger's Cage
1 Nihil Spellbomb
1 Ravenous Trap


Cards #59-60 are the Preordains, which took the place of a second Snapcaster and a seventh fetchland at the last minute. They were great for me all day. I do miss the second Snapcaster though and would try and fit it in somewhere if I had to play tomorrow.

In terms of strategy, this is a board control deck with 2 gifts in it rather than a Gifts-centered deck. But good finish
18  Vintage Community Discussion / Community Introductions / Anyone from East Tennessee? on: January 30, 2015, 10:25:53 am
I am working with some other players to start having Type 1 tournaments in Knoxville. If you are in the area post here so I can get your information and keep you in the loop.
19  Eternal Formats / Ritual-Based Combo / Re: Does Treasure Cruise/Dig Through Time Have A Place In Combo? on: January 26, 2015, 06:30:31 pm
let's take a look at Jesse Martin's most recent combo list on Morphling.de from November:

1 Black Lotus
1 Chrome Mox
1 Lotus Petal
1 Mana Crypt
1 Mana Vault
1 Mox Emerald
1 Mox Jet
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Sol Ring
1 Cabal Ritual
4 Dark Ritual
1 Demonic Tutor
4 Duress
1 Grim Tutor
1 Imperial Seal
1 Necropotence
2 Tendrils of Agony
1 Vampiric Tutor
1 Yawgmoth's Bargain
1 Yawgmoth's Will
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Brainstorm
1 Chain of Vapor
4 Gitaxian Probe
1 Hurkyl's Recall
1 Inkwell Leviathan
1 Mind's Desire
1 Mystical Tutor
1 Ponder
1 Preordain
1 Time Walk
1 Timetwister
1 Tinker
1 Windfall
1 Wheel of Fortune
1 Badlands
2 Bloodstained Mire
4 Polluted Delta
1 Snow-Covered Island
1 Tolarian Academy
3 Underground Sea

SB:
4 Defense Grid
1 Hurkyl's Recall
2 Leyline of the Void
1 Plague Spitter
1 Rebuild
2 Snow-Covered Island
1 Snow-Covered Swamp
1 Thoughtseize
2 Tormod's Crypt

This decklist appers to be missing a Memory Jar or Lion's Eye Diamond. Can anyone confirm the 60th card?
20  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: January 26, 2015, 04:43:34 pm
Another thing I've tested is white for better Oath hate post-sb and Monastery Mentor.  Cutting Tinker + Robot for Monastery Mentor + X has worked out well, since the classic Gifts pile of Tinker/Time Walk/Recur/Recur has functioned just as well with Monastery Mentor/Time Walk/X/X.  With all the high CC bombs and awkward early game topdecks, converting Robot's slot into a flow-enabler like Preordain is huge.  White also gives access to sideboard Unburial Rites packages.  

Another noticeable feature of Gifts I learned from playing it modern is that it truly playing singletons, by nature of the card's function itself.  Perhaps switching a Drain to a Flusterstorm would increase flexibility in an emergency Gifts for 4-counterspells type of situation.  

Congrats on a respectable finish at your event.  

Thanks. I have not tested Mentor at all. My instinct for Mentor is that you want a lot of cheap spells to resolve after Mentor is in play. So you would play Probe and Preordain. In that cast you really want to resolve Will instead of Recoup since you get all the spells. Past in Flames could be decent there if you have a bunch of probes. There's also Manamorphose and Cabal Therapy (eats and then makes a token for one card). If you can resolve Time Walk, there are plenty of ways to kill your opponent, but how good is Mentor when you aren't combing off? Tinker is really good regardless, however Mentor is better vs. MUD.

Adding another counter to Gifts for is something I do post-board. In Game 1, I am not sure I want to give up maximizing my drain mana triggers. But it's definitely good to cast in response to an opponent's threat.
 
21  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: January 26, 2015, 04:30:22 pm
I tested Recoup in a Gifts list that had some Preordains and Probes and it was not an awful topdeck.  

There are times in the game when it is "dead," but this is similar to when you don't have enough mana to cast Gifts, or your yard is just too small to cast Will yet. So I don't see it as being a problem to draw it sometimes. You can utilize it to double Walk, DT, or Tinker, and then it's also really good in high-mana scenarios.

Also, Past in Flames doesn't get you Lotus back, which is really huge for comboing off.
22  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: January 26, 2015, 02:38:41 pm
(In the old days when the game had RFG I used to add two more turns with burning wish but Mark Gottlieb had to meddle in more places he didn't belong so you can't do that now.)

Sorry, guess I'm new-school: What is RFG?

Removed from game zone. There was no exile zone. So you could cast burning wish, get back the time walk you just flashed back, cast it, and then it would go to the graveyard, where you could flashback the recoup on it again. You could take all 5 extra turns this way Very Happy
23  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: January 26, 2015, 02:22:00 pm
I cast Recoup often, and I use the flashback ability too. I make great use of the card when I play with it.

People will often give you Time Walk as one of the two weaker cards in a Gifts pile. I set up walk into recoup+walk into flashback recoup+tinker or will or something like that. I also play 4 mana drains, and paying the 3R to flashback is really easy with drain mana. I think people may be forgetting that Recoup is active in the graveyard, so when your mana is producing properly you can get a lot of value out of the card. Also, if you are in a scenario where you are mana-flooded and draw Gifts, there is no way for an opponent to split your cards to prevent you from casting Will. Recoup works no matter where they put it.

(In the old days when the game had RFG I used to add two more turns with burning wish but Mark Gottlieb had to meddle in more places he didn't belong so you can't do that now.)
24  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: January 25, 2015, 04:14:11 pm
I still don't get the Recoup, but otherwise it looks fine.

I put Recoup in my Gifts piles quite often. It usually gets a time walk for 2UR, and then I can get Tinker or Will later if they get countered.

Also, you can put 1 recoup, 1 snapcaster into a Gifts pile and then 2 spells that you need.
25  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: January 25, 2015, 12:09:44 am
Ok here's what I'm thinking for tomorrow:

4 Force of Will
4 Mana Drain
3 Mental Misstep
1 Hurkyl's Recall
1 Dack Fayden
1 Fire // Ice

1 Yawgmoth's Will
1 Time Vault
1 Voltaic Key
1 Tendrils of Agony
1 Blightsteel Colossus
1 Recoup

3 Gifts Ungiven
2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
2 Snapcaster Mage

1 Tinker
1 Thirst for Knowledge
1 Time Walk
1 Demonic Tutor
1 Merchant Scroll
1 Ponder
1 Vampiric Tutor
1 Mystical Tutor
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Brainstorm

1 Black Lotus
1 Mana Crypt
1 Sol Ring
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Mox Jet
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Emerald

1 Tolarian Academy
3 Island
3 Polluted Delta
2 Flooded Strand
3 Underground Sea
3 Volcanic Island

SB:
2 Hurkyl's Recall
2 Ingot Chewer
1 Toxic Deluge
1 Pyroclasm
3 Grafdigger's Cage
2 Thoughtseize
2 Red Elemental Blast
1 Flusterstorm
1 Mindbreak Trap

***
I went 3-1 with this deck, losing the mirror 1-2.
26  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: January 23, 2015, 03:33:49 pm
Ok I made a couple of changes with a little testing. I am not sure if StP is enough of a concern with Mentor, but I suspect that there will be some at the tournament I'm going to.

4 Force of Will
4 Mana Drain
3 Mental Misstep
1 Hurkyl's Recall
1 Fire // Ice

1 Yawgmoth's Will
1 Time Vault
1 Voltaic Key
1 Tendrils of Agony
1 Inkwell Leviathan
1 Recoup

3 Gifts Ungiven
2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
2 Snapcaster Mage
1 Dack Fayden

1 Tinker
1 Thirst for Knowledge
1 Time Walk
1 Demonic Tutor
1 Merchant Scroll
1 Vampiric Tutor
1 Mystical Tutor
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Brainstorm

1 Black Lotus
1 Mana Crypt
1 Mana Vault
1 Sol Ring
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Mox Jet
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Emerald
1 Tolarian Academy
1 Library of Alexandria
2 Island
3 Polluted Delta
2 Flooded Strand
3 Underground Sea
3 Volcanic Island

In this deck, a second mage may be better than Ponder since you don't want to be playing small ball usually.
27  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / Re: New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: January 23, 2015, 02:54:10 pm


Seriously, 2 posts in the last 7 years? Gifts is bringing some folks out the woodwork.

It's not just Gifts. I rarely have the opportunity to play Vintage since I live in a remote area for Eternal magic. Gifts combined with a one-of tournament in my area brought me back! Smile
28  Eternal Formats / Blue-Based Control / New Gifts, without Brainstorm or Thirst for Knowledge on: January 20, 2015, 06:28:59 pm
It's been a while since I played Gifts. I had the most success with decks playing 4 Thirst and 4 Brainstorm along with Gifts. I think this deck is much worse without them. However, Gifts might still be good enough to play. So here is an idea:

Gifts 2015:

// 13 Control
4 Force of Will
4 Mana Drain
3 Mental Misstep
1 Rebuild
1 Fire // Ice

// 6 Win
1 Yawgmoth's Will
1 Time Vault
1 Voltaic Key
1 Tendrils of Agony
1 Blightsteel Colossus
1 Recoup

// 16 Combo Time
3 Gifts Ungiven
2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
1 Snapcaster Mage
1 Tinker
1 Thirst for Knowledge
1 Time Walk
1 Demonic Tutor
1 Merchant Scroll
1 Ponder
1 Vampiric Tutor
1 Mystical Tutor
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Brainstorm

//25 Mana
1 Black Lotus
1 Mana Crypt
1 Mana Vault
1 Sol Ring
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Mox Jet
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Emerald
1 Tolarian Academy
2 Island
2 Snow-Covered Island
3 Polluted Delta
2 Flooded Strand
3 Underground Sea
3 Volcanic Island

I think Misstep is really important vs. Duress, Thoughtseize, Spell Pierce, and Pyroblast. I also think 4 Drain could be right since this might be the Mana Drain deck that is best able to exploit it. Jace is generally decent, but exchanging cards from your hand is very important in this deck.

Has anyone else been brewing Gifts?
29  Vintage Community Discussion / Card Creation Forum / AEther Sense on: June 16, 2013, 01:23:45 am
AEther Sense

{2} {U} {U}

Instant

Counter target spell.

Flashback - {U} {U}


30  Eternal Formats / Global Vintage Tournament Reports and Results / Re: [Report] The Cary Cup #1: TO Report (0th Place) and Player Report (1st Place) on: January 28, 2008, 12:45:16 am
Sorry to let down Arsenal this time...but it was definitely the right call...

Congrats on the finish! I'll see you in the top4 next time.
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