Its been some time since I wrote the last instalment of An Artificer’s Tale, and quite a lot has happened since then! Over the past few weeks (all-be-it less so more recently) I have worked on a 100 card deck and have had the opportunity to test it out in a handful of games.
I began by testing in some simple 1 on 1 games, just to get a feel for the deck and check that it “curved out” okay. It was pretty successful, In one game I had a Strata Scythe equipped Slobad getting on with the beat down, in another Lux Cannon got online to force a concession. In both games my mana seemed ok; although as the deck has some very expensive cards I instantly decided I would need to add a few more Mana-stones. The main problem was a severe lack of card-drawing ability though. This could be difficult to solve, being in red, but I’m working on it…
I have also had the chance to test the deck in a couple of real (read: multiplayer) games. In the first my opponents were running Karador, Ghost Chieftain, a themed Vampire tribal deck lead by Anowon, the Ruin Sage and Riku of Two Reflections.
Despite having no less than two of my lands blown up early on I found myself with few mana problems. Expedition Map found me Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle early on, but the threat of an Acidic Slime in Karador’s grave nullified that whilst Archon of Justice took out my Inkmoth Nexus too.
What the deck really lacked though, as before, was simple card advantage. Once I played out my hand I had nothing to back it up and found myself playing in top-deck mode for a while. I did have Thopter Assembly and Bonehoard combining to give me some nice (indestructible) guys to play with. Thanks to a lot of counters from Arcbound Crusher I even managed to have a 27/27 flier for a while.
Now were I trying to win, I could have simply KO’d the Karador player there and then. The Karador deck is quite vicious and, having played against it a number of times, it essentially just does the same thing over and over unless its grave gets exiled; recurring Primeval Titan every turn puts the deck so far ahead it just becomes an inevitable beating.
Instead I opted to let the game go on a while longer, as for me this was more about seeing what my deck could do. Turns out, not a lot when I’m just top-decking
Finally, I played a game against Experiment Kraj and Riku of Two Reflections (same deck as before). This game went really well for me, I was able to drop a lot of artifacts relatively quickly and got some good synergy going with them and Slobad. Unfortunately a Primordial Hydra came down for the Kraj player early, and neither of us could find a way to answer it once it was equipped with Lightning Greaves. Time Stop shut me out of my last turn (where, annoyingly, I would’ve drawn, cast and cracked an Oblivion Stone to stabilise the board!) and that was the end of that!
These games were all a few weeks ago now and I had planned to write/publish Part 3 earlier, but alas real life has been getting in the way as ever! Since then I have been tinkering with cards in the deck. Some of the artifacts I originally traded for have since been dropped in favour of what I hope are more useful cards. I now have a good number of mana stones, as well as a little recursion and a few more tricks. There are a handful of cards that I am still aiming to get just to round out the deck a little. I’m currently running on 39 lands but I think it should be alright to drop this a little.
Part 4 will very likely contain my first full decklist! I’ll be looking forward to receiving feedback on the deck and will probably take a look pack to parts 1 and 2 to see how well I have managed to stick to my objectives and achieve them.