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Author Topic: Landstill: The Primer  (Read 15321 times)
Mon, Goblin Chief
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« Reply #60 on: December 14, 2003, 12:16:09 am »

Quote
Quote @jshields,

Do you have any reasons behind these questions? It is highly unacceptable to just post a list of questions without so much as a drop of actual work from yourself. I could say things such as "Why not splash black? Why not use Will? Why not use Timetwister?" But unless I have a valid reason behind why I think they should be used it serves no purpose to the thread or community. If you have the desire to learn why there isn't a peticular feature being used that you think should be, then why don't you write out a post explaining the choices that you think should be made, and why. There is no reason to not put the effort into this site, that others like Shockwave have.
Personally I think the question why Wishes aren't good here is  relevant for a PRIMER. As this is meant for people who have no experience with the deck, one can't assume a working knowledge how the deck plays.
The question has an easy answer if you understand the deck, as Dante prooved, but this thing is a primer and meant to answer exactly these kinds of basic but deck specific questions.

Just to make sure that stuff gets into the primer.
I always like "Big-NONO" parts for primers. People will try modifying the deck, we can at least tell them what definitly doesn't work.\n\n

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the Luke
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« Reply #61 on: December 14, 2003, 05:26:41 pm »

I have played versions Shockwave's Landstill for the last three weeks at tourneys, and I must say, I'm very impressed. Our tourneys are small yet our core is very highly powered, so often a third to a half of the decks are powered. Out of 12 people at the last tourney, there were about six Ancestrals floating around. My overall results for the three tourneys were:
(BYE+2)-1, 2-0-1 and 3-1.

My first loss was to suicide black, and I feel strongly that I would have taken it out, but I misplayed a Chalice of the Void game two.

My second loss was to Blue/White control, and I should have taken it out, or at least drawn. I lost game one after resolving Ancestral, multiple Standstills, an active Library and at least one Disk. I feel that he outplayed me, not that his deck was better. Two of the wins in the last tourney were scrubtastic, and should be treated as byes.

It is a great deck, and I can see the reasons for each maindeck and sideboard decision. The manabase has always done me well, I've hardly mulliganed at all. The Lightning Bolts are the only truly questionable slot in the deck. I'd say that they are more suited to a random metagame, and if you are expecting more combo, then the Chain of Vapor/Teferi's Response (or maybe Mana leak) configuration is suitable. The bolts are still an excellent catch-all. They are either removal or extra pressure first game.

Cunning Wish has no place in this deck, for two reasons: one, there is really no need. The deck has so many main deck answers, and a superb maindeck sweeper, Nev's Disk. Two, why spoil such an excellent sideboard? Games two and three are where Landstill should REALLY shine. Cunning Wish is a slow answer that ruins the rock-solid consistency of this deck's sideboard. And anyway, what would you cut?

Shockwave, great deck, it's a pity I have to hand back most of the cards to my wife to rebuild Gay/R, or I'd likely keep playing it. Good primer, well written. Perhaps you should deal with the Cunning Wish issue (if you haven't already done so) for those whom its exclusion isn't so obvious.

-Luke
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Rico Suave
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« Reply #62 on: December 14, 2003, 05:37:30 pm »

Great work.  

I also like the idea of "do not do this" in a primer.
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Smmenen
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« Reply #63 on: December 14, 2003, 05:56:40 pm »

The primer was a long time coming, but well worth the wait.  Well done.

Steve
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Shock Wave
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« Reply #64 on: December 15, 2003, 01:58:24 pm »

Quote
Quote Personally I think the question why Wishes aren't good here is  relevant for a PRIMER. As this is meant for people who have no experience with the deck, one can't assume a working knowledge how the deck plays.
The question has an easy answer if you understand the deck, as Dante prooved, but this thing is a primer and meant to answer exactly these kinds of basic but deck specific questions.

While I agree that the Primer should address Cunning Wish on the premise of it being a strong choice in most control builds, I'm not going to write an explanation about every blue card and whether or not it fits in the deck. Although the primer is written to help those that are not familiar with the deck, that doesn't mean that a little thought shouldn't go into the questions you ask, as Mykeatog has suggested. I encourage the questions, however some reasoning to accompany inquiries would be appreciated.

Quote
Quote also, what changes could be done that do not leave this deck as a t1.5 design for making it a budget build?

This is another omission from the primer that I intend on including in part II. Landstill is actually still quite strong as a budget deck, but obviously lacking in comparison to the powered versions. I'll do my best to address this issue in the near future.

Quote
Quote I also like the idea of "do not do this" in a primer.

While I agree that this should be added, in what format would those interested like it presented in the primer? For example, I can just leave it as is and then continue the matchup analysis, including a small paragraph for each matchup and what the common misplays are (I think I've done this for most of the matchups I've included). The other possibility would be to just make a seperate section in the primer for what common misplays are and what the correct play decisions are in certain scenarios.\n\n

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Rico Suave
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« Reply #65 on: December 15, 2003, 02:14:52 pm »

Well, in a primer it usually does a card-by-card analysis.  What I meant before was more like in contrast to "run these cards" it would also be beneficial to have a "don't run these cards" section.

Even a couple lines devoted to common cards that just don't work, like Wishes, would be exactly what I was thinking.

Having misplays for each match is great though.
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Phantom Tape Worm
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« Reply #66 on: December 15, 2003, 02:16:13 pm »

Excellent primer shockwave, I was wondering when you were finally going to post it  Wink

Just to chime in on the fetchland issue, I came to the same realization with mono-u gay fish.  Fetchlands thinned out the mana base too much to support the continued activation of so many man lands while still trying to cast spells in the late game.  Additionally, it reduced the amount of colored mana you'd see late game to an unacceptable level.  In gay/r fetchlands were necessary to support the manabase AND fuel lavamancer so manlands needed to be cut (2 conclaves went away).  Obviously cutting man lands is not an option for landstill and the manabase is where it needs to be.
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wicketsnatcher
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« Reply #67 on: December 15, 2003, 05:10:44 pm »

Well this Saturday I happened to win a power tournament in Hadley with the "U/R Landstill 2003, Post Mirrodin".  With only slight changes.

I did not find the basic mountain to be helpful in the deck.  Usually basics are around to make sure the ever popular Blood Moon doesn't do you in.  And since Blood Moon turns them into Mountains, the basic Mountain isn't really doing you anything good.  I do not think that protection against Wastelands is a good enough reason either, since you have so many lands for your opponent to kill, generally they'll be taking out threats as opposed to mana producers.  For this reason, I decided to change the red fetchland to a blue one, and the mountain to another Island.

Throughout the course of the day there was one game where I was screwed for lack of red mana.  I realized the potential for that happening when I initially made the change.  However, aside from that single game, it was not a problem.  

I agree with having only two fetchlands in the deck.  Any less would hurt that slight bit more on making sure you have red mana, and any more would (obviously) reduce the land count in the deck.  It was my experience that 5 lands was the "sweet spot", so to speak (giving you the resources to swing with a Conclave and have counter backup).  Any more than that was great, but it started working like a well oiled machine at that point.  That's justification of the higher land count because you also must take into consideration that your 4 Wastelands & Strip Mine are not likely to be mana sources.

The second change I made to the deck was the removal of 2 Lightning Bolts for 2 Chain of Vapors.  The primer already discussed the merit of this replacement, however I strongly believe it should always be included in the main deck regardless of the metagame.  Sometimes things slip through your wall of counters.  It's bound to happen.  The end of turn Chain of Vapor was key in several matches, especially when you can counter the bounced permanent the second time it gets played.  I am still unsure about the 2 Lightning Bolts, but I do believe in versatility and it was nice to be able to burn out 'phids and, in one game, burn for the win.

Lastly, I wanted the deck to have a stronger control element and so I replaced 1 Misdirection and 1 Stifle with 2 Mana Leaks.  I think that Mana Leak is very strong in the deck, especially with the 9 colorless producing lands.  I don't think that there was a time I had wished them to be either Stifle or Misdirection.

And now a comment about Cunning Wish.  The reason I do not believe that it should be included in this deck is because it requires too many sideboard slots to trully be effective.  Currently 4 Tormod's Crypts and 4 Red Elemental Blasts are necessary, leaving only 6 slots open for wishing and tuning your deck to other matchups (Maze of Ith is an AMAZING card).  If you want a few Mazes and Chalices in your board, there is just no room left to make Cunning Wish as versatile and strong as it can be in other decks.
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PucktheCat
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« Reply #68 on: December 15, 2003, 05:13:48 pm »

Quote
Quote Throughout the course of the day there was one game where I was screwed for lack of red mana.  I realized the potential for that happening when I initially made the change.  However, aside from that single game, it was not a problem.  

I agree with having only two fetchlands in the deck.  

What do you suggest for this slot in light of these two statements?  A painland?

Leo
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wicketsnatcher
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« Reply #69 on: December 15, 2003, 06:50:30 pm »

Quote
Quote What do you suggest for this slot in light of these two statements?  A painland?

Yes, I think that if I were to build this deck again, Island #5 would become a Shivan Reef.  I think that it would really do the trick for what everyone is looking for.


On a side note, I just finished up my tournament report with LandStill.  It's not that great, but I figure it may be used for some reference in regards to discussion about this deck.\n\n

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Shock Wave
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« Reply #70 on: December 16, 2003, 01:30:18 am »

Just to give a little history on why that mountain even exists:

Back in 2001 when mono-blue still had some balls to it, Landstill ran 4 mountains. The reason is because Back to Basics cripples this deck just as much if not moreso than Blood Moon. When I tested the earliest version of the deck (pre-Onslaught) against Smmenen, I found that mountains were absolutely key against his BTB. Since BTB is now non-existent, it makes perfect sense to cut the Mountain and swap the Wooded Foothills for a Flooded Strand. I've also tested the 1 Shivan Reef configuration (I believe I played with 1 the first time I played in Kansas for the Black Lotus) and it seems like right now it is the way to go.

Superstition is the only thing that's keeping me from cutting the Mountain in my current build. It hasn't failed me up to now, so I'm going to stick with it until it does.

Quote
Quote The second change I made to the deck was the removal of 2 Lightning Bolts for 2 Chain of Vapors.  The primer already discussed the merit of this replacement, however I strongly believe it should always be included in the main deck regardless of the metagame.  Sometimes things slip through your wall of counters.  It's bound to happen.  The end of turn Chain of Vapor was key in several matches, especially when you can counter the bounced permanent the second time it gets played.  I am still unsure about the 2 Lightning Bolts, but I do believe in versatility and it was nice to be able to burn out 'phids and, in one game, burn for the win.

It's really hard to say what the optimal configuration is because the direction the metagame is taking is still uncertain as of now. It looks as though aggro has had it, but who can say for sure? Contrary to what some think, Chain of Vapor is not strictly superior to Lightning Bolt. Sometimes bouncing a permanent does little more than buy you one turn. Lightning Bolt is, well, removal. The difference should be quite apparent. I'm not advocating one unequivocally over the other, rather pointing out that both have significant strengths and weaknesses.

Quote
Quote Lastly, I wanted the deck to have a stronger control element and so I replaced 1 Misdirection and 1 Stifle with 2 Mana Leaks.  I think that Mana Leak is very strong in the deck, especially with the 9 colorless producing lands.  I don't think that there was a time I had wished them to be either Stifle or Misdirection.

Well, I can't say that I agree with cutting Misdirection or Stifle for Mana Leaks. The reason is that by lessening your count of Misdirection, you're going to have a more difficult time resolving Standstill against control on turn 2. Sometimes, the game revolves around that exact play. Stifle is also an absolute house in the curent environment. I've never been disappointed to draw it, especially considering everyone and their brother runs fetchlands right now. I've found that sometimes I can just win against control by raping their manabase and stifling a fetch. I like having the possibility of going the mana denial route and Stifle is obviously of paramount importance to that strategy. It also rapes Dragon, which otherwise would be a hopeless matchup.\n\n

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pernicious dude
Guest
« Reply #71 on: December 16, 2003, 02:08:59 am »

The deck Wicketsnatcher faced in the Hadley finals ran,
of course,
Back To Basics main.
It came down twice game one.

I'd been running one fetch, one pain, one Swamp in my U/b.
I'm going to two fetch, one pain, no Mountain in my U/r.
The four sided REB, along with 4 main Disk,
should hopefully handle B2B.
The rest of my current sideboard is
4 Tormod's Crypt,
3 Maze Of Ith,
2 Chalice Of The Void,
1 Blue Elemental Blast,
and one Mother-Humpin' Slice and Dice, y'all.
Sweet as Masticore is in the mirror,
and against the fearsome Elf.dec,
I think Slice will be more generally applicable.

I'm staying with the three MisD and three Stifle.
I'd like to fit a fourth of each.
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