Fine Gaming: Dega-Taur Win Record
After building the Dega-Taur deck from my last article, I went out and tried out against the local competition. With many players try out their new concoctions, it was curious to see what decks would stand out. Firstly, I feel it’s important that a few minor changes were made to the deck before its run.
For one, Nykthos does almost nothing for the deck. With no major pour for all the mana, it basically becomes just another colorless land in most cases. It’s been replaced with mountains.
Secondly, the sideboard was incomplete, but also was reconsidering certain options, Instead of Dark Betrayal, why not Bile Blight? It hits more targets and if it’s a large number of the same creature, it can full on change the course of battle. Additionally, the power of Revoke Existence is known, so considering the power of the gods and even certain enchantment decks, I figure it was good to run.
Ultimately, my deck list looked like so:
Lets break down the Rounds:
Round 1 – Bant Aggro 2-1
Game 1 I had an opening hand of 2 Boros charms, Blood Crypt, Sacred Foundry, Ragemonger, Boros Reckoner, and Rageblood Shaman. I decided to keep it because all my colors were available and figured I’d get my third land soon. I drew into 2 more Boros Charms, and several other high end cost minotaurs, but by the time I’d get more land, my opponent had 13 Damage on the board and I was at 7 Life. I conceded and went to game 2.
Sideboard for this match definitely encouraged more removal of my opponent’s creatures, lead to adding in my Mizzium Mortars and Chained to the Rocks in exchange for my Deathbellow Raiders
-4 Deathbellow Raiders
+2 Chained to the Rocks
+2 Mizzium Mortars
Game 2 began what was more representative of the deck, getting Ragemonger out on turn 3 followed soon after by a swarm of Boros Reckoners, Rageblood Shamans, and eventually Kragma Warcaller for the killer. After a good 15 trample damage came at my opponent with no answer, we when to game 3.
Game 3 was a very close match. Probably closest I came to losing. After getting his Experiment One to a 3/3 state and whittling me down to 5 life, all I had were Mutavaults to block with and the threat of Unflinching Courage to ruin my day. Luckily, one Loxodon Smiter was disposed of earlier with a trade with a Boros Reckoner. Sacrificing the Mutavaults to stay alive, I was thankfully blessed with a misplay when my opponent bounced the Mutavault to my hand with Simic Charm instead of using it for it’s +3/+3 effect later on. This lead to a slow but steady comeback as I managed to get out the Ragemongers I needed along with the Rageblood Shamans and Fanatic of Mogis to go in for the kill. Being at 2 life was a risky endeavor, but ultimately worth it.
Round 2 – GW Auras 2-1
Game 1 seems to be a reflection of my Round 1 game 1 – where I only got 3 lands, two of them mutavault colorless. I was able to keep my opponent’s creatures at bay with a incoming stream of Lightning Strikes but only for so long before he made his Boon Satyr evade death with a Selesnya Charm and then slap a Unflinching Courage onto it. From there, couldn’t get an answer (or a land) in time to get out my offensive defense.
Like my first round, sideboard wanted more removal. Again, I had considered putting in the Mizzium Mortars, but as my opponent was Voltron-ing it up with no sign of hexproof, I figured that my Act of Treasons would work best here. But just in case it didn’t, Revoke Existence to remove the more pesky enchantments like Boon Satyr or even the popular Eidolon of Countless battles.
+2 Revoke Existence
+2 Act of Treason
-4 Deathbellow Raiders
Game 2 was much better, having plenty of lands and answers in hand, I was able to lightning strike most early enemies. When my opponent played a Fiend Slayer Paladin, a Chained to the Rocks took care of it. From there, it was just a matter of flooding the battleground with my minotaurs and just overrunning my opponent
Game 3 was a close match, with my opponent having gained a good bit of life from an Unflinching Couraged Hero of Iroas, but a Chained to the Rocks took care of it before it could win. However, he had an army of Eidolon of Countless Battles, Soldier of the Pantheon, Brimaz, and Fiend Slayer Paladin against my 2 Boros Reckoners, Purphoros, and Fanatic of Mogis. To top it off, I was at 2 life while he was comfortably at 14 before the final turn. Luckily, a misplay occured when my opponent slapped a Eidolon of Countless onto his Soldier of the Pantheon and swung, forgetting that Purphoros is indestructable. Regardless of that, after throwing two Boros Charms at his face, I realized it didn’t matter. I could swing out with my Reckoners and regardless of whether or not he blocked wouldn’t have matter. The fact that I drew into a Rageblood Shaman to buff all my minotaurs only guaranteed that victory.
Round 3 – Boros Burn 2-1
Admittedly I was a little excited to go against a deck like this, as it was actually one of the decks I had considered building. Luckily, this match up showed some of it’s flaws.
Game 1 was a convincing victory, with a large number of minotaurs filling the field and overrunning my opponent faster than he could burn them. Not many burn spells could overcome my creatures 3 toughness. Lightning Strike and Warleader’s Helix and nothing else, forcing my opponent more often than not spend two spells to kill a single minotaur. However with the threat of Satyr Firedancer being possible, I kept burn spells in hand until my opponent conceded the first match.
Realizing that my opponent wasn’t running too many creatures, I tried a sideboard of Mogis and Peak Eruption in place of my two Chained to the Rocks. Neither saw play but good answers regardless.
-2 Chained to the Rocks
+1 Mogis, God of Slaughter
+1 Peak Eruption
Game 2 was very close, where my opponent had plenty of Boros Charms and just enough life gain from Warleader’s Helix to keep him from lethal. With his life at 12 and 11 damage on the board, I was forced to shock land myself to 6 and play Legion’s Initiative. However, this was exactly enough my opponent needed and killed a single minotaur with two Searing Bloods, costing me the game.
Game 3 seems much like a repeat of Game 1, where minotaurs quickly filled the fields and while Boros Charms came against me, the damage from the minotaurs was too great, too resilient. With his life at 6 and mine at 8, and with more than enough damage on the board to end my opponent twice over, my opponent conceded.
Round 4 – Intentional Draw
Top 8 – Bant Control 2-0
My top 8 match was my first against a control-type deck, so I was curious to see how the match would play out. I don’t think my opponent was ready for how quickly Minotaurs could come out with Ragemonger on the field as the first match rampaged pretty quickly. Even when Kiora came out and weakened my assault slightly, I was still at an advantage. The planeswalker was removed from the picture very quickly and my opponent took brutal damage after brutal damage.
Like my previous match, I decided that with few to no creatures, Mogis was definitely the card to bring in, along with Revoke Existence to combat any annoying Detention Spheres. In place, I sided out my Chained to the Rocks and a single Deathbellow Raider. Didn’t need to attack recklessly.
-2 Chained to the Rocks
-1 Deathbellow Raider
+1 Mogis, God of Slaughter
+2 Revoke Existence
Game 2 was a little harder as my opponent threw several Supreme Verdicts my way and I didn’t have the Boros Charm or Legion’s Initiative answer for them. Luckily, Mutavaults pulled their weight and laid on the offense when no other minotaurs could. They got Azorious Charmed a few times, but once the second Mutavault was laid down, it was difficult to hold them back, especially when a Rageblood Shaman drop buffs them up. Even with a Sphinx’s Revelation for 8, it ultimately became a matter of time before I finally did drop my Legion’s Initiative and put enough minotaurs behind it with enough mana open to evade a board wipe.
So ultimately, the deck when 4-0-1 (intentional draw), I got to admit, the deck went much better than I thought it would do, especially if a Ragemonger hit the board turn 3. How could the deck be improved? One concern I had was that several of my matches resulted with my life being very low. I almost wonder if I should consider putting some sort of life gain in the sideboard against more aggressive decks, but at the same time, it would slow my own assault and I’m not sure if that’s what’s best for the deck or not. One consideration was running Whip of Erebos and that might do the trick, while still providing some tricks, such as returning a killed Kragma Warcaller or Rageblood Shaman to the field to get that final umph needed to win a game.
I believe the future version of the deck will look something like this:
More playtesting is required, but I think the deck is off to a good start and hearing word that more people are realizing the deck’s strength makes me more confident in its viability. Again, it remains to be seen if it stands up against the stronger decks like Mono-Blue or Mono-Black, but it makes quite the impact.
Next time, we’ll talk about my first experience at a modern event. Probably won’t win considering I’m not even running an established deck, here’s hoping it’ll be fun. Till next time.