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Author Topic: "The Unbroken" U/R Landstill: The Primer  (Read 85895 times)
oshkoshhaitsyosh
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« on: October 31, 2011, 08:13:20 pm »

An Introduction

This is what I would call the official Blue/Red Landstill Primer.  My name is Josh Potucek and I have been playing Landstill for about three years in Vintage and about five years in Legacy with great success.  I would like to share some of my experiences and knowledge about Landstill.

WARNING:  This deck does not have blowout victories.  Every match is a grind, even when the matchup is favorable.  You may be in for a life shock when you play this deck!

Landstill is a deck similar to Workshops in a way, but similar to a Drain control deck at the same time. It is similar to Workshops in a sense because it has to grind out wins and create a slow soft lock. But at the same time it has a heavy controlling disruption suite while maintaining good positive card advantage from all aspects.  I donít care what some people may say, but this deck is not an easy deck to play.  The concept may look easy on paper, but mistakes are exaggerated in a deck with no powerful/broken cards, and you will lose making mistakes.


Card Analysis and Choices


Countermagic


Mana Drain: This is a great counter in that it lets you activate Factories on next main phase, cast a Null Rod, Crucible or anything else really. This card can be a bit mana intensive for my lists at times, but I will take the trade off for the positive things Mana Drain allows. This card is a no-brainer.

Mana Leak: This is a first cousin of Mana Drain for Landstill. I already run mana denial, so in most cases they will not have the extra 3 mana to pay for the spell.  This is a great option to use in conjunction, or over, Mana Drain at times. I have run lists with 2/2 split and 3 Drain/1 Leak split also with success. With Mana Leak there is less strain on the mana base.

Daze: This card is something of the past now with all the other great counters available, but figured it should get an honorable mention.

Force of Will: This card doesnít need explaining in a blue deck.

Mental Misstep This card is obviously a good card. I am not 100% sold that itís a perfect fit in the deck. Misstep and Spell Pierce in my opinion are in an interchangeable slot.

Spell Pierce: Great card that plays really well with mana denial again.

Misdirection: One of my favorite disruption spells in the deck by far. This is a mandatory 2-of in Landstill lists in my opinion. It protects the early Standstill, helps win counter wars, and steals the occasional Ancestral Recall.

Mindbreak Trap: This is a close cousin to Misdirection. This card is in my more recent lists and has been phenomenal. It stops your opponent from having a lucky turn one, it wins the counter wars, is a hard counter late game, and when your opponent pops your Standstill and tries to go broken it aids in stopping them in their tracks. Great card!

Red Elemental Blast: Clearly great in the blue matches.

Pyroblast: Same

Flusterstorm: Havenít played this card in Landstill yet, but it may eventually squeeze in the deck. I havenít really had the need with all the other great options.

Steel Sabotage: Winner when Shops is a dominant force!


Card Advantage


Gorilla Shaman: Clear card advantage being able to destroy multiple Moxen and other artifacts with a single card. Gorilla Shaman got much weaker after Lodestone was printed and Mental Misstep became a card. The card still deserves an honorable mention.

Null Rod: One of my favorite parts of the deck and abusing the card advantage.  This card speaks for itself. It will single handedly turn off so many cards in your opponentís deck, netting card advantage while stopping one of the most lethal two card wins in the format in Key/Vault.

Engineered Explosives: This card is a slightly better choice in a legacy landstill deck, but not a bad option over null rod. It is a very versatile card as in it can control mox setting it at zero, or even controlling an oath of druids, or a creature with cmc of two for that matter. This may be a more viable option if the meta shifts towards aggro strategies to beat landstill.

Standstill: This card speaks for itself. I can now have 5 Ancestral Recalls in my deck by running this. Teamed up with man-lands this card is scary.

Ancestral Recall: No need to explain.

Brainstorm: I actually cut Brainstorm from my more recent lists, only for the fact that it doesnít do enough for me with only four fetch lands, and not many broken plays in my deck. I have been playing the deck forever and always was quite disappointed with Brainstorm in it from day 1. The deck generally runs four to five shuffle effects, can't get Blightsteel in the hands, and canít dig for broken cards. So when Jace was printed I decided to run Jace over Brainstorm. I started to like Jace more and more and added a second Jace.  I am running three Jaces now. Sure, Jace suffers from the same issues as Brainstorm in this deck with so few shuffle effects, but Jace does much more than just Brainstorm, he can bounce a threat or eventually win the game. So on that note I have found Brainstorm to be a really nice card in a broken deck, but pretty poor in this one.

I do like Brainstorm in my Legacy Landstill lists because I have seven fetch lands and four Brainstorm (then its more exciting to play!)

Jace, the Mind Sculptor: This card was not in my earlier lists because it wasnít a card, but once I caught on to it I saw that he was insane in Landstill. I started by running one over Brainstorm, and then soon jumped to two and now currently I am at three in my list. I canít play it as fast as some decks with minimal Mox mana ramping, but it is a great mid/late game control card and itís a game winner.  Jace plays right into this deckís strength: card advantage. Jace single handedly, can bounce a creature every turn or Brainstorm, netting card advantage. It is insane.

Fact or Fiction: A great option as it can create pretty big card advantage similar to Jace, the Mind Sculptor, but fact is powerful because it is instant. It is also less mana intensive compared to Jace, the Mind Sculptor. This may be a great option in future builds.


Creature Control and Other Cards



Fire/Ice: Kills Dark Confidant, Lotus Cobra, Vampire Hexmage, and many other pesky creatures. It is a blue card, making it great with Misdirection and Force of Will, and can cantrip or stall out a land or creature for a turn on the same note. One notable disadvantage in comparison to Bolt is that it doesnít kill Lodestone Golem

Lightning Bolt: The stepbrother of Fire/Ice. It is better and worse than Fire/Ice at the same time. Itís NOT blue which does occasionally get in the way, it can kill a Jace, assuming they brainstorm with the Jace, and it canít kill multiple threats like Fire often does. Biggest downfall I have been a victim to is getting my Lightning Bolt countered by Mental Misstep. It is very annoying and you do not want to have a counter war over killing a creature because they have Misstep. This is an interchangeable mix and match slot with Fire/Ice. I personally feel that Fire/Ice is the correct card in current meta.

Dead/Gone: Always seemed like a card that could be squeezed in with the burn somewhere sometime, although I haven't tried it yet. It burns a critter or answers Tinker, which seems pretty good to me.

Crucible of Worlds: This card is awesome. It smoothes out the mana base, It provides a way to pull all the blue sources from the deck by fetching every turn. It is a lock piece vs. any deck teamed up with Wastelands, Strip Mine and Null Rod.  Not to mention that it is really good vs. Workshops.

Snapcaster Mage: This card is intriguing and cute and all, but I just run too many counters with alternate costs, I really donít think itís worth running this guy and having to rework my counter package.

Vendilion Cliquelion: Now this card might be something to look at in the future. This card seems like it would be great vs. other control decks and maybe the mirror. Look for it to be a 1-2 of sometime in the future.

Mystical Tutor: This card was in my lists all up until the most recent list. It was cut for a few reasons.  For starters, it is susceptible to Misstep, it is card disadvantage and it can fetch Recall, which is great, but makes you susceptible to Misstep again.  It was just not good enough in the current metagame, because of Misstep. I recently cut it for another Jace.

Merchant Scroll: I really don't like this card in Landstill too much, but it's an option.  I have tested it and a two mana sorcery to get an instant is just not quite good enough in my book.  Playing a sorcery for two mana seems OK if itís turn one and you get a lucky Mox hand. Short of that I don't want to be tapping two mana to find an instant. Maybe this is a preference card, but I have never needed such a card.

Chain of Vapor: Clearly a very versatile bounce spell. Able to bounce anything off the board. It was replaced with Sabotage in the newer lists because of the rise in Workshop decks. It answers Tinker as well.

Echoing Truth: Landstill must run an array of one and two mana bounce spells to be able to dodge Chalice of the Void at times. This is another very versatile bounce spell. If something sneaks through the wall of counters you have bounce spells. Especially nice vs. a resolved Tinker

Steel Sabotage: Can bounce or counter any artifact. Clearly amazing vs. Workshops, and can counter Key, Vault, Lotus, Top or any of the annoying artifacts played in blue decks before you hit Null Rod. And yet again, it answers Tinker

Hurkylís Recall: This is a great card in bouncing Shopís board or answering Tinker.

Smash to Smithereens: I ran this card as a singleton for a short period of time. Again it dodges Chalice at 1, and believe it or not itís decent vs. blue decks as you can kill an artifact and kill Jace with it for two mana.  But itís definitely a stronger choice when Shops is the clear cut  #1 deck to beat.

Time Walk: Itís power for a reason and I kill with Grizzly Bears attacking, you do the math haha.  

Stifle: This card again didnít make the cut in my two more recent lists. They were cut for Mindbreak Traps. They both stop storm cards, but Stifle didnít do enough and wasnít improving my game plan enough. It is also hosed by Misstep, like many cards, so it was cut.  Trap was leaps and bounds better.


Mana Base


I have found the most efficient ratio of mana sources vs. spells to be 21 land, 1 Lotus, 2 Moxen, to the 36 spells. Any less mana sources is simply wrong and will not work properly.  22 lands is an option that I had run in the past which is always an open option. I have tried running a random Mox Jet in the deck in attempt to speed up the deck and it never tested all that well.  I have found the combination of four fetches, 4 Volcanic Island, 3 Island to be a sufficient number of blue sources for my play style.

Library of Alexandria: Great card in this deck. When you get a hand without a Standstill this is an efficient card at replenishing your hand. An absolute all-star in the deck

Wasteland/Strip Mine: Never less than an auto five slot include.

Faerie Conclave: This is an intriguing option. I would consider it as a possible singleton to include.

Barbarian Ring: I played this card in my Bloomsburg list. Itís another random intriguing card. Great vs. a Bob, cute with Crucible and itís an extra red source for the mana base

Ghost Quarter: This is a great sideboard option or might even be a one of option for the maindeck in the future.


Now For Some of My ListsÖ


Josh Potucek 2/28/09 Baltimore Vintage Event 3rd place

4 x Force of Will
3 x Mana Leak
3 x Daze
4 x Stifle
4 x Null Rod
4 x Standstill
1 x Red Elemental Blast
1 x Pyroblast
1 x Brainstorm
1 x Black Lotus
1 x Ancestral Recall
1 x Mox Sapphire
1 x Mox Ruby
1 x Time Walk
2 x Gorilla Shaman
1 x Misdirection
2 x Crucible of Worlds
1 x Mystical Tutor
1 x Chain of Vapor
3 x Fire/Ice
4 x Island
3 x Volcanic Island
2 x Polluted Delta
2 x Flooded Strand
4 x Wasteland
1 x Strip Mine
4 x Mishraís Factory

SB:

4 x Threads of Disloyalty
2 x Old Man of the Sea
3 x Relic of Progenitus
3 x Annul
3 x Energy Flux

Josh Potucek Ė Landstill
Game Core Con on 9/12/09 4th place 31 players


4 x Force of Will
4 x Mana Drain
2 x Misdirection
2 x Red Elemental Blast
4 x Standstill
2 x Fire/Ice
2 x Gorilla Shaman
3 x Null Rod
1 x Hurkyl's Recall
2 x Crucible of Worlds
1 x Mox Sapphire
1 x Mox Ruby
1 x Black Lotus
1 x Time Walk
1 x Ancestral Recall
1 x Brainstorm
1 x Echoing Truth
1 x Chain of Vapor
1 x Mystical Tutor
2 x Stifle
2 x Daze
4 x Volcanic Island
4 x Flooded Strand
4 x Mishra's Factory
3 x Island
4 x Wasteland
1 x Strip Mine
1 x Library of Alexandria

SB:

2 x Spell Snare
2 x Ingot Chewer
3 x Threads of Disloyalty
2 x Engineered Explosives
2 x Relic of Progenitus
2 x Tormod's Crypt
2 x Pithing Needle

Joshua Potucek, Bloomsberg Quarter Finalist
1/22/11, 24 players


3 x Lightning Bolt
2 x Stifle
4 x Standstill
2 x Crucible of Worlds
3 x Null Rod
1 x Gorilla Shaman
1 x Red Elemental Blast
1 x Misdirection
2 x Spell Pierce
4 x Force of Will
4 x Mana Drain
1 x Smash to Smithereens
1 x Jace, the Mind Sculptor
1 x Chain of Vapor
1 x Hurkyl's Recall
1 x Time Walk
1 x Brainstorm
1 x Mystical Tutor
1 x Ancestral Recall
4 x Mishra's Factory
1 x Strip Mine
4 x Wasteland
4 x Volcanic Island
1 x Library of Alexandria
1 x Barbarian Ring
2 x Island
1 x Snow-covered Island
1 x Black Lotus
1 x Mox Sapphire
1 x Mox Ruby
1 x Flooded Strand
1 x Scalding Tarn
1 x Misty Rainforest
1 x Polluted Delta

SB:

2 x Mindbreak Trap
1 x Pyroblast
2 x Annul
1 x Engineered Explosives
2 x Pyroclasm
4 x Threads of Disloyalty
3 x Energy Flux

BBGD 17 Josh Potucek Landsill 1st place 7/16/11 33 players
Report here - http://www.themanadrain.com/index.php?topic=42542.0


4 x Standstill
4 x Force of Will
4 x Mana Drain
2 x Crucible of Worlds
2 x Jace, the Mind Sculptor
4 x Null Rod
2 x Steel Sabotage
2 x Spell Pierce
2 x Misdirection
3 x Lightning Bolt
1 x Hurkylís Recall
1 x Echoing Truth
1 x Mystical Tutor
1 x Time Walk
1 x Ancestral Recall
2 x Stifle
1 x Black Lotus
1 x Mox Sapphire
1 x Mox Ruby
1 x Polluted Delta
1 x Scalding Tarn
1 x Misty Rainforest
1 x Flooded Strand
4 x Volcanic Island
3 x Island
1 x Library of Alexandria
1 x Strip Mine
4 x Wasteland
4 x Mishraís Factory

SB:

3 x Energy Flux
1 x Hurkylís Recall
2 x Pyroclasm
2 x Vendilion Clique
1 x Threads of Disloyalty
1 x Pyroblast
2 x Red Elemental Blast
2 x Mindbreak Trap
1 x Ingot Chewer

BBGD 17.5 Josh Potucek landstill 1st place 9/10/11, 32 players
Report Here - http://www.themanadrain.com/index.php?topic=42887.0


4 x Standstill
4 x Force of Will
4 x Mana Drain
2 x Misdirection
2 x Mindbreak Trap
2 x Spell Pierce
2 x Steel Sabotage
4 x Null Rod
2 x Jace, the Mind Sculptor
2 x Crucible of Worlds
3 x Lightning Bolt
1 x Hurkylís Recall
1 x Echoing Truth
1 x Mystical Tutor
1 x Time Walk
1 x Ancestral Recall
1 x Black Lotus
1 x Mox Sapphire
1 x Mox Ruby
4 x Mishraís Factory
4 x Wasteland
1 x Strip Mine
1 x Library of Alexandria
3 x Island
4 x Volcanic Island
1 x Scalding Tarn
1 x Polluted Delta
1 x Flooded Strand
1 x Misty Rainforest

SB:

2 x Red Elemental Blast
1 x Pyroblast
3 x Energy Flux
2 x Underground Sea
2 x Yixlid Jailer
4 x Leyline of the Void
1 x Firespout

BBGD 18 Josh Potucek landstill 1st place 10/22/11, 36 players
Report here - http://www.themanadrain.com/index.php?topic=43318.0


4 x Standstill
4 x Force of Will
4 x Mana Drain
2 x Misdirection
2 x Mindbreak Trap
2 x Mental Misstep
1 x Red Elemental Blast
4 x Null Rod
3 x Jace, the Mind Sculptor
2 x Crucible of Worlds
3 x Fire/Ice
1 x Steel Sabotage
1 x Hurkylís Recall
1 x Echoing Truth
1 x Time Walk
1 x Ancestral Recall
1 x Black Lotus
1 x Mox Sapphire
1 x Mox Ruby
4 x Mishraís Factory
4 x Wasteland
1 x Strip Mine
1 x Library of Alexandria
3 x Island
4 x Volcanic Island
1 x Scalding Tarn
1 x Polluted Delta
1 x Flooded Strand
1 x Misty Rainforest

SB:

1 x Red Elemental Blast
3 x Energy Fux
2 x Underground Sea
2 x Yixlid Jailer
4 x Leyline of the Void
2 x Ingot Chewer
1 x Steel Sabotage

The Council Open TPG #1 Joshua Potucek Landstill 1st Place 1/21/12, 22 players
Report Here - http://www.themanadrain.com/index.php?topic=43852.0


4 Standstill
4 Force of Will
4 Mana Drain
2 Misdirection
2 Mindbreak Trap
2 Mental Misstep
2 Red Elemental Blast
2 Crucible of Worlds
1 Steel Sabotage
4 Engineered Explosives
1 Time Walk
1 Ancestral Recall
3 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
1 Hurkylís Recall
1 Echoing Truth
2 Fire/Ice
4 Wasteland
4 Mishraís Factory
1 Strip Mine
1 Library of Alexandria
1 Faerie Conclave
1 Polluted Delta
4 Scalding Tarn
3 Volcanic Island
2 Island
1 Mountain
1 Black Lotus
1 Mox Sapphire

SB:

1 Yixlid Jailer
4 Leyline of the Void
2 Underground Sea
4 Ingot Chewer
1 Chain of Vapor
2 Steel Sabotage
1 Energy Flux



In addition to all of my wins and almost wins, I have played this deck at Blue Bell eight man side events.  I have won with Landstill close to a half dozen times. It is easy to see the progression of the builds and where the deck currently is at with my three tournament win streak.

Bad Matchups & Good Matchups


Fish Decks with Tarmogoyf and a Fast Start For an Oath Deck:

Fish Ė Fish is a deck that can give Landstill a tough time. In order to beat a deck like this, in game one you have to get a hand with that can deal with a couple creatures.  Thatís not always easy.  This can be accomplished with a burn spell and a couple of counters. There are hands where you have the cards to counter a few creatures, then drop a Crucible, setting up everlasting Factory blocks which all you to drop Jace.  Game oneís vs. Fish are not easy. After game one, depending on your sideboard strategy, it is a beatable deck.  I have found all different types of Fish hate to work, as you can see in my lists above.

Oath Ė Oath isnít a bad matchup unless they resolve an early Oath. If Landstill survives the first few turns and has time to take control of the game then Oath will not win. But on the flip side an early Oath is really bad news. Believe it or not I have beaten Oath once an Oath resolved. This means I used a burn spell to burn out my token and used Wasteland on his Orchard. I have done this several times in the same game vs. Oath. So save your Wastelands vs. this deck! They are very important for if and when an Oath resolves!

Good Matchups: Broken Blue Decks and Workshops

These are the good matchups for Landstill.  When you play vs. a broken blue deck the game plan is simple, resolve a Null Rod, keep Dark Confidant off the table and continue building card advantage through Standstill and Null Rods.  Itís a pretty simple game plan, but you cannot get casual about countering random spells and cannot get casual about wasting your own resources either.

Conclusion: That is a quick overview of the good and bad matchups.  The deck can still lose to broken blue decks and Workshop decks if you donít play really tight. When I lose with this deck playing vs. a broken blue deck, it is when they get off an early Tinker or I have really unfortunate luck in my own draws. Still, I feel like my most current list is the best and most consistent at executing the game plan. If the Workshop Prison pilot manages to establish a board with Trinisphere, or Smokestack/Crucible of Worlds itís also conceivable that you could lose.  Itís only the lucky retarded broken hands that you will lose to once and a while. This deck is insanely consistent and will maintain the same game plan every single game. There is no ďoh hey look I drew a lucky one of, I guess I winĒ factor to the deck.


Why This Deck Doesnít Want Broken Cards


I have tested tutors, auto wins, and even Tinker/bot in the deck and never have found it desirable. The deck needs to get full advantage out of every single card in the deck! For example, topdeck tutors are cute and all, and sure they might get you the one out answer, but they are real card disadvantage when the card you tutor for is countered.  Another example is Tinker/bot: if I draw a robot in my hand while playing Landstill that is card disadvantage. I want every single card I draw that isnít a mana source to do something, not just sit in my hand. The same thing applies to Key/Vault.  Sure, having both in your hand just wins the game, but having one and not the other is just terrible. And they do nothing on their own.  I built my list to take advantage of every card in the deck.  My last example if Yawgmothís Will. Will is great in a deck that runs the full suite of black tutors, all the artifact fast mana and has broken lines of play. Landstill, however, is an inherently un-broken deck so itís just not good enough.


Why Blue/Red Over Other Color Combinations?


Landstill, in my opinion, can be played with either blue/red, blue/white, or blue/black. Landstill does not want to be a three color deck. Especially the type of builds that I play. I want the full suite of Waste effects and Null Rods. The mana base would weaken too much to make it three colors.  

Blue/Red Ė The main reason I like staying with blue/red Landstill over any other color is because Red Elemental Blast and burn spells are huge. Red Elemental Blast is just so good in counter wars, or in itís ability to nuke a Jace.  The burn is a nice game finisher, or removal for those pesky creatures. Red gives you the option of Fire/Ice as well, which dodges Misstep as I previously stated.

Blue/White Ė This would be my second best option in playing Landstill. I played a blue/white build in a tournament years ago and I was in contention to the very last round until I lost to a broken blue deck.  Looking back, I wish I had burn and Red Elemental Blasts to fight that deck. White has Swords to Plowshares, which makes it intriguing. Swords does something that a burn spell canít: Swords has the ability to remove any creature, including a robot off Tinker, or any big Shops creature, whereas burn has the upper hand vs. a Jace.  If I were to run a blue/white list again it would run one or two Faerie Conclave in addition to Mishraís Factories to fight Jace.  It would also run Spell Pierces to help stop a Jace from resolving.  Not to belabor the point, but a downfall to Swords to Plowshares is that it too is vulnerable to Mental Misstep.

Blue/Black Ė This is another option and the only other option. Black has creature removal in Innocent Blood, Dismember, Ghastly Demise, or even Diabolic Edict. But it is still weak vs. Jace, so it is similar to the white list (though Swords to Plowshares is just a better removal spell than the options that black removal brings to the table.)


Why Null Rod?


Null Rod is crucial in my lists because it completes the mana denial circle. If the metagame shifts to more Fishy decks and more Landstill, then obviously this card is weak. But between broken blue decks and Workshops, Null Rod shuts them down in combination with the Wasteland effects. If the format had less broken decks and broken plays then Null Rod would be obsolete, but thatís not the case.

Gorilla Shaman and Engineered Explosives are other cards that could fit in the slots instead of, or with, Null Rod. Obviously Shaman works with Rod and explosives donít.  I played Shaman and Rod, but found Shaman do a poor job at denying mana and card advantage. Sure, you eat the permanents with Shaman, but they still get to use the mana before you eat them with Shaman.  I upped the count to four Null Rods and cut Shaman. Engineered Explosives is an interesting option over Rod, because you can play it for 0, 1, or 2. If it was more like Pernicious Deed it would be more playable.  It can only hit one certain mana cost, so if you set it at 0 to hit Moxen your opponent could Key/Vault you. If you set it to one they can ramp with Moxen and Lotus. Setting it at two is obviously strong because it can handle Dark Confidant and other similar creatures.  But I have always had success with the mana denial plan and wouldnít have it any other way.


Current List vs. My Previous Lists


I feel my current list is as strong as it has ever been. I have had pretty decisive victories with the build. The numbers are perfect for card combinations and I made the deck better at dealing with Mental Nisstep (a new player in the meta.)  

In between my win at Blue Bell Game Day 17.5 and Blue Bell Game Day 18, I played at a small tournament in Bloomsburg, PA with Landstill.  I came up short and was really disappointed in my deck. I lost in the first round to a Bob/Tezz deck, which is what I prey on. I didnít draw a single Standstill, Jace, or Wasteland in my two game skid vs. the deck. I kept hands with countermagic and some burn. At the time the burn spells were Bolts.  I ended up using a Bolt to kill a Bob and got into too many counter wars with Misstep, because Misstep proved too good vs. my Bolts.  I ran out of counters and then never drew any advantage spells.  In both games I fought over a Bob and I had my crucial burn spells Missteped. I won the next round and then the following round I played vs. a Bob/Gush deck. I had the same issue with Bolt.  Again I was fighting over a Bolt resolving because of Misstep. So for Blue Bell Game Day 18 I went with Fire/Ice and never looked back.  I used Fire Ice to two for one Bobs twice on the day. The cards was nuts.

Mindbreak Trap is the next major change in the deck. In Blue Bell Game Day 17.5 I played against Joe Pace in the top four. I had just made the change to have the Traps over the Stifles for this tournament. I lost game one.  It was late in game two and he played an Ancient Grudge on my Null Rod, then played a sol ring (maybe it was a Mox), then went for Yawgmothís Will. I was holding trap. I trapped his Will. If that was a Stifle I straight up lose and my tournament ends.  Trap is a great (and probably underrated) card if people donít understand the concept behind it.

There are subtle changes from tournament to tournament, sometimes theyíre metagame changes, but something theyíre just evidence of new cards being put to use to help make the deck better and better.


Sideboarding


The only slots I feel that must remain the same areÖ  None of them really.  As the metagame shifts, so does the sideboard.  Recently Dredge has been a huge hit and the most consistent way I have found to beat that deck is with 4 Leyline of the Void, 2 Yixlid Jailer, and 2 Underground Sea.  These hate cards simply say NO to Dredge.  If you protect them, you will win.  Itís as simple as that.

Next for Shops: If I am not running Bolt, I feel a number of Chewers, and Energy Fluxes, (and maybe a Steel Sabotage) to be sufficient.  Just look at my sideboards on each list and see: they are changing periodically. There are many options for the deck in this regard.  

Maybe youíre alright accepting a loss against a given deck (by not using sideboard slots against them.)  Maybe youíre going to use that space to shore up other matchups.  Sideboards should be evidence of what you want to beat.  


Overall Conclusion:


I have had great success with this deck, and by winning three Blue Bellís in a row I hope I can open peopleís eyes and maybe get people to think outside of the box in this format. Itís not only about speed and raw power; Vintage can be a slower more thought out game. I hate people that think that if a deck doesnít have Yawgmothís Will itís bad. I simply do not agree. I take pride in winning without broken cards and defying the image of what some people think Vintage is.

Props Ė Props go out to all the people that disrespect me and me playing this deck, you drive me to become better and make the deck better. Even though some people can be real a**holes.

If anyone has questions or anything feel free to ask, Iím glad to be a force in the format and I hope that maybe my success will change the metagame somewhat!!! This is my attempt at a primer or a deck analysis as I have never done anything like this before! There may be some missed points or missed cards so this is not the gospel, but it is close  

EDIT:  Thread stickied, edited for spelling and grammar.  Congratulations on your promotion Josh - Prospero.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2012, 09:34:34 am by oshkoshhaitsyosh » Logged

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oshkoshhaitsyosh
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« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2011, 08:31:26 pm »

Hope everyone finds this atleast a little insightful. I am I primer n00b this is a first!
« Last Edit: October 31, 2011, 08:33:58 pm by oshkoshhaitsyosh » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2011, 10:52:26 am »

No Merchant Scroll? I find ways to cut cards and include Merch. Scroll in my blue decks because it is too good. It basically toolboxes all your answers. Steel Sabotage? Fire//Ice? Force of Will/MindBreak Trap? Pretty much anything relevant for Landstill it finds. I think Brainstorm is way too good, I don't know about cutting it from Blue list..since it digs and protects your hand.

As much as I like being able to beat Dredge with Leylines, I will accept a auto-scoop to this match and focus on Blue decks/Shops/Fish/Oath matchups and take the deck to tourneys accordingly. My list is..

1 Brainstorm
4 Force of Will
1 Misty Rainforest
1 Polluted Delta
3 Island
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Time Walk
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Mystical Tutor
1 Echoing Truth
1 Merchant Scroll
4 Standstill
4 Mana Drain
2 Crucible of Worlds
4 Null Rod
2 Steel Sabotage
2 Spell Pierce
1 Misdirection
2 Lightning Bolt
1 Fire // Ice
1 Hurkyl's Recall
1 Stifle
4 Volcanic Island
1 Scalding Tarn
1 Flooded Strand
1 Library of Alexandria
4 Wasteland
1 Strip Mine
4 Mishra's Factory
1 Black Lotus
2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
SB: 3 Energy Flux
SB: 1 Hurkyl's Recall
SB: 2 Pyroclasm
SB: 1 Threads of Disloyalty
SB: 1 Pyroblast
SB: 2 Red Elemental Blast
SB: 2 Mindbreak Trap
SB: 1 Ingot Chewer
SB: 2 Annul

Pretty close to other Landstill list but good blue cards. It probably needs Mental Misstep somewhere, but is fine without the card.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2011, 10:57:28 am by Shax » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2011, 11:44:33 am »

Your list looks weak in a field with bob. We have alot of bobs in the blue bell meta game, and as far as brainstorm goes I like more jace and no brainstorm. Brainstorm is way better in a deck packed with broken cards. Once upon a time I ran scroll and wasn't too impressed same with stifle, but whatever works for you! The main problem with scroll is its a 2 mana sorcey, sure it gets you any instant but I never want to be using scroll in early or mid game seems fine in late game but that's it. I never was fond of playing many sorcerers with this deck unless they are really necessary. There are so many ways to build landstill. Thanks or chiming in and showing your list!

And when I won the first time with landstill I ran no dredge hate an got lucky. But in a blue bell meta game we have alot of dredge running wild. The sideboard and main deck choices are all based on the expected meta game.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2011, 12:59:23 pm by oshkoshhaitsyosh » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2011, 11:13:51 pm »

Thanks for posting this. It was a great read!
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« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2011, 03:22:52 am »

Thanks for the fantastic primer.  Few questions for you:

Stifle Ė This card again didnít make the cut in my 2 more recent lists. They were cut for mindbreak traps. They both stop storm cards, but stifle didnít do enough and wasnít improving my game plan enough. It is also hosed my misstep like many cards so it was cut. Trap was leaps and bounds better.

Isnít the primary purpose of Stifle not to stop Storm, but to pile on additional mana denial by countering fetch activations?  How do you feel about your mana denial package without it?  Do you simply have enough that additional mana denial would be unnecessary?

Blue/Black Ė Last off this is another option, and the only other option. Black has creature removal in innocent blood, dismember, ghastly demise, or even edict. But it is still weak vs. a jace so it is similar to the white list but swords to plowshares are just better then the removal black brings to the table.

Black also potentially brings Duress effects to the table (as well as demonic, despite vamp being subpar here).  Do you find Duress effects an inferior option for Landstill?
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« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2011, 06:06:13 am »

Thanks for the fantastic primer.  Few questions for you:

Stifle Ė This card again didnít make the cut in my 2 more recent lists. They were cut for mindbreak traps. They both stop storm cards, but stifle didnít do enough and wasnít improving my game plan enough. It is also hosed my misstep like many cards so it was cut. Trap was leaps and bounds better.

Isnít the primary purpose of Stifle not to stop Storm, but to pile on additional mana denial by countering fetch activations?  How do you feel about your mana denial package without it?  Do you simply have enough that additional mana denial would be unnecessary?

Blue/Black Ė Last off this is another option, and the only other option. Black has creature removal in innocent blood, dismember, ghastly demise, or even edict. But it is still weak vs. a jace so it is similar to the white list but swords to plowshares are just better then the removal black brings to the table.

Black also potentially brings Duress effects to the table (as well as demonic, despite vamp being subpar here).  Do you find Duress effects an inferior option for Landstill?
Well when I first had stifle in the deck, storm was relevant. And obviously it adds to the mana denial but I figured I would try the deck without the stifles to see how I liked it and it was awesome. I actually liked stifle alot more when workshops were the clear cut best deck. Stifle could negate a wasteland or be cute with smoke stack. Vs blue stifle was always underwhelming in my experiences.

I haven't tested black enough to say if duress is inferior. Landstill can get hands that are hungry for colored mana sources and I'm not sure duress would fit properly. It could in the right build. I have already tested blue white landstill with the new enchantment null rod, and it was to mama intensive to get white mana, half the time I would have an island and colorless sources and wished it was a null rod. But I'm sure you could make more non blue spells work in a landstill list just would need to rework the mana base some
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« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2011, 07:04:07 am »

Well when I first had stifle in the deck, storm was relevant. And obviously it adds to the mana denial but I figured I would try the deck without the stifles to see how I liked it and it was awesome. I actually liked stifle alot more when workshops were the clear cut best deck. Stifle could negate a wasteland or be cute with smoke stack. Vs blue stifle was always underwhelming in my experiences.

I haven't tested black enough to say if duress is inferior. Landstill can get hands that are hungry for colored mana sources and I'm not sure duress would fit properly. It could in the right build. I have already tested blue white landstill with the new enchantment null rod, and it was to mama intensive to get white mana, half the time I would have an island and colorless sources and wished it was a null rod. But I'm sure you could make more non blue spells work in a landstill list just would need to rework the mana base some

Interesting. Thanks for the insight.
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« Reply #8 on: November 03, 2011, 11:14:52 pm »

Quote from: oshkoshhaitsyosh
...I hope I open peopleís eyes and maybe get people to think outside of the box in this format. Itís not only about speed and raw power; vintage can be a slower more thought-out game. I hate people that think if it doesnít have yawgís will itís bad. I simply do not agree. I take pride in winning without broken cards and defying the image of what some people think vintage is.
QFT.

Awesome read! Thank you for writing this and actually playing a deck you enjoy and tuning it to your meta along the way   Very Happy
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« Reply #9 on: November 04, 2011, 01:02:27 am »

Just a forums question. Isn't Landstill a typical Null Rod deck and shouldn't all this new threads on this decktype placed in the Null Rod section?
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« Reply #10 on: November 04, 2011, 01:33:35 am »

I dont think there is any deck that fits "blue based control" better then landstill atm, thats probably why its in this forum
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« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2011, 03:33:17 am »

It is definately based on a strong mana denial package and rides little beats home on the back of Wasteland and Null Rod. It is using tempo advantages to keep away the opponent from doing something serious until it wins. Sounds to me a lot like Fish.
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« Reply #12 on: November 04, 2011, 04:47:06 am »

It is definately based on a strong mana denial package and rides little beats home on the back of Wasteland and Null Rod. It is using tempo advantages to keep away the opponent from doing something serious until it wins. Sounds to me a lot like Fish.

Yeah, but if you say that people won't want to play it.
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« Reply #13 on: November 04, 2011, 10:10:37 am »

WAIT!! Jace is a girl????? Beyond that great primer.
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« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2011, 10:54:11 am »

It is definately based on a strong mana denial package and rides little beats home on the back of Wasteland and Null Rod. It is using tempo advantages to keep away the opponent from doing something serious until it wins. Sounds to me a lot like Fish.
Its still packing 10-15 counters and plays the permission game.
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« Reply #15 on: November 04, 2011, 11:10:34 am »

It is definately based on a strong mana denial package and rides little beats home on the back of Wasteland and Null Rod. It is using tempo advantages to keep away the opponent from doing something serious until it wins. Sounds to me a lot like Fish.
It's far from fish as I only have 4 grizzly bears in the deck. That would be like calling a deck running bobs a fish deck. Landstill is much closer to a blue control deck then it is fish. Sure I get your point it has mana denial, but who says a blue based control deck can't have mana denial?
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« Reply #16 on: November 04, 2011, 02:06:57 pm »

BBS ran Back to Basics and full strips and often won just swinging with a bunch of Ophidians. No one called it fish because of that.
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« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2011, 02:45:47 pm »

Great primer. Really like this build, its control suite, and approach to winning.
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« Reply #18 on: November 14, 2011, 03:42:05 pm »

Great primer. Really like this build, its control suite, and approach to winning.
Thanks!
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« Reply #19 on: November 14, 2011, 09:53:41 pm »

It is definately based on a strong mana denial package and rides little beats home on the back of Wasteland and Null Rod. It is using tempo advantages to keep away the opponent from doing something serious until it wins. Sounds to me a lot like Fish.
It's far from fish as I only have 4 grizzly bears in the deck. That would be like calling a deck running bobs a fish deck. Landstill is much closer to a blue control deck then it is fish. Sure I get your point it has mana denial, but who says a blue based control deck can't have mana denial?

Gotta agree there. The old Keeper decks ran the Wasteland/Strip Mine suite with Crucibles, and they were far from being "Fish" decks. Landstill is more in line with those old Keeper decks than Fish.
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« Reply #20 on: November 14, 2011, 10:44:04 pm »

[There is no place in this thread for comparisons to Fish, so please save everyone's time and move on]


I've been able to play against this list and the Meandeck Landstill list a substantive number of times and here are the basic findings:

1) All of the clunky and awkward cards found in testing were changes Meandeck made...

2) Except for the black tutors which were amazing

3) Null Rod is no joke, even against somewhat immune lists, like Gush-powered/low expansion strategies

4) It's not the size of the creatures, but the number of them that poses a problem for these lists.  Ie, it's not sb'ing Tarmogoyf, it's having goyf, bob, trygon all sucking up attention from a Landstill player that will allow victory
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« Reply #21 on: November 14, 2011, 10:59:50 pm »

2) Except for the black tutors which were amazing

I find this a little surprising, though I will admit I haven't played against the deck as much as you have. Aside from the obvious Ancestral or maybe a bounce spell, what made the tutors so fantastic?
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« Reply #22 on: November 15, 2011, 08:06:11 am »

Josh: what do you think about this change:

-1 Island, +1 Tropical Island

Not much, but it will support 2 x Ancient Grudge in the SB and 1-3 x Firespout in the SB (all metadependant)
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« Reply #23 on: November 15, 2011, 09:05:12 am »

Quote
what made the tutors so fantastic?

Not ancestral recall.  The deck doesn't often need draw if it can control the pace of the game.  Usually the deck is good at locking down tactical options for opponents to within a hair of victory.  If the opponent is able to assemble the right angle of attack, though they can still win by sneaking in a BSC or w/e.  The black tutors help fill in the cracks in Landstill's defense so that they supplement the hard wall of counters (and mana disruption) with the finishing blow.

There are other games where the mana denial doesn't work and/or standstill doesn't come down and sometimes those just don't go well regardless.
« Last Edit: November 15, 2011, 12:25:05 pm by Grand Inquisitor » Logged

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« Reply #24 on: November 16, 2011, 12:05:26 pm »

[There is no place in this thread for comparisons to Fish, so please save everyone's time and move on]


I've been able to play against this list and the Meandeck Landstill list a substantive number of times and here are the basic findings:

1) All of the clunky and awkward cards found in testing were changes Meandeck made...

2) Except for the black tutors which were amazing

3) Null Rod is no joke, even against somewhat immune lists, like Gush-powered/low expansion strategies

4) It's not the size of the creatures, but the number of them that poses a problem for these lists.  Ie, it's not sb'ing Tarmogoyf, it's having goyf, bob, trygon all sucking up attention from a Landstill player that will allow victory

So you prefer Meandeck? http://www.mtgdecks.net/decks/view/21677
I'm just wondering because Meandeck has that "Oops I win" factor but I feel like the vault-key and tinker-bot sort of get in the way of Standstill. I've never used or tested Meandeck so I'm just wondering yours or others opinion.
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« Reply #25 on: November 16, 2011, 12:11:28 pm »

Inquisitor indicated he disliked how clunky the Meandeck changes were, though conceded the tutors were good. I would assume he would prefer a different build.
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« Reply #26 on: November 16, 2011, 12:15:01 pm »

Inquisitor indicated he disliked how clunky the Meandeck changes were, though conceded the tutors were good. I would assume he would prefer a different build.
Oh ok. I misunderstood him then.
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« Reply #27 on: November 16, 2011, 04:27:36 pm »

I was testing with GI, and pretty much Demonic and Vamp were awesome while Will, Tinker/Bot and Snapcasters were getting in the way.  The ability of Vamp to grab strip/nullrod/crucible when compared to mystical is pretty important.  Tinker was hard to set up, even with the factories as artifacts, and we found snapcasters to not have enough targets.  Most of the time I would rather have just had a vanilla counterspell.  Will with a grave of wasteland, force, drain and mindbreak just isnít that sexy. 

That being said, were talking about a nights worth of testing here, so I wouldn't write those cards off yet.
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« Reply #28 on: November 17, 2011, 11:01:31 am »

Great primer, Josh.  I really like the deck, as well.

Some salient questions:

What are your thoughts on Into the Roil in place of Echoing Truth? 

How sexy are your Mishras?
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« Reply #29 on: November 17, 2011, 11:53:03 am »

How sexy is Mishra?

(Corrected)

Very sexy...
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