Paradoxical Oath Tendrils aka POT

I have seen some questions about where Oath is in the meta at the moment, and as a person who loves Oath hybrid combo decks, I figured it might be helpful to get my answer to that question in the form of the deck I have now been playing for a couple months.

So to be clear, I didn't come up with this idea, and this list definitely was informed by many lists that came before. I know there has been some success by others with different versions of this deck, some of which are quite similar, and I definitely have some biases about what I like, so this is in no way the "definitive list".

Let's get started, first and foremost this is a combo deck with a capital COMBO, it is optimized around winning ASAP, even after oathing into griselbrand, you will lose games, if you try and play like control oath. We don't have the density of answers needed to win that kind of game. That isn't to say it isn't correct to occasionally win by attacking 3 times (especially against shops decks), but the standard game plan of this deck whether casting paradoxical or activating oath is to win with storm.

Secondly, this is one of my favorite oath decks to draw Griselbrand with, because oathing to just completely fill your yard and then memory's journeying back both Twister and Will is great! Memory's journey is a super important card, and means that we can get away with the super minimal Oath package that we have. Adding additional Oath targets to the main is not advised.

Finally our Protection suite is probably the biggest point of that could be easily varied. I have a somewhat scattered approach here that I tweak out of the board adding more duresses/counters/grids depending on the MU. Your meta might dictate a different mix between main and board, but either way, having access to some of each of these effects is quite good.

We are running minimal cantrips in this list, mostly because this is a deck where we are trying to have more bombs than our opponents have counters. This works a surprising amount of the time against mentor decks, especially post board when we get to add in remoras. There probably is a more controlling version of this deck with more cantrips and less bombs, but that doesn't mesh well with what I think the goals of the deck are to be fast and brutal against the blue decks/combo decks. To race dredge and to have a resilient game 1 back up plan against shops.

The worst matchup for this deck is probably White Eldrazi, but it isn't unbeatable it just requires a bit more hard work. Our shops matchup is much better than W Eldrazi, simply because hurkyl's does so very much work. The addition of Containment priest/stony silence/tks makes the MU much worse.

All the other big players are pretty reasonable matchups, I would estimate in the 50/50 area, depending on specific builds, with the added bonus, that people tend to make mistakes because they don't know which plan you are working toward, and different cards are good against each one. As a sidenote, Enchantments are a really good card type in Vintage right now, very little that interacts with other good cards, interacts with them positively and especially low cost ones that disencentivize your opponent trying to kill you with creatures seem ideal. Basically fragmentize is our main concern these days from that perspective and it is hard to want to side in in large numbers when your opponent might just storm you out.

Last matchup comment, as you can tell this deck is basically ignoring and racing dredge, you are more than welcome to add in some cards specifically for that matchup, but my meta is largely dredge-less so I don't bother. My recommendation would be rav traps and leylines if you wanted something though. It is nice to have something you can draw if you get early oath into griseldad.

I don't want to get into too many specifics about mulliganing decisions other than not to side out the oath package or storm kill, leaving both in gives too many free wins against people that decide to hedge against a particular plan. Also, never cut memory's journey, it is too important an Oh Shit card to cut.

last edited by garbageaggro

I've played this several times locally. One of my favorite things about this deck is that you absolutely don't need Oath or Griselbrand. I've killed on turn one or two several times without GB. Most people board in Oath hate against me. I keep a hand that draws half my deck and blow right by their Containment Priest or Grafdigger's Cage.

I'm playing Vault+Key in my build. It's nice to have a 4 mana "I win" that doesn't require digging and the Key is somewhat useful on its own.

vault+key is interesting. I think if I was playing those I'd also want tinker and jar.

TBH, I jammed Vault + Key + Something else I forget into the Gitaxian Probe slots one morning when I showed up with the wrong deckbox post-restriction.

I think i agree with @mediumsteve that i would want tinker and jar if i was playing vault key.

I also like to play oath into priest and activate twice. flashback journey. Who cares if i don't have griselbrand, i just willed, for the whole graveyard.

Cage is a little tougher, but thankfully is stone awful against just being a paradoxical storm deck.

I like this....been looking for something to tool into since doomsday lost gush

Currently running this at home against my wife to avoid housework... Am winning more than half the time against a Jeskai Mentor build.

I've downshifted the importance of Paradoxical as a hedge against Null effects. It really just Outcomes for unbeatable value before using Decay to clear the way for Oath or Bomberman finishes, and can often do this even with a Null on the board by just holding up countermagic and casting Outcome on their EOT. This deck is really built around Decay as much as anything. It's not mindbendingly broken, but is certainly broken enough that if the opponent can't stick a Containment Priest, Cage, Null, or Stony Silence they are very much at risk of being comboed out. Therefor Decay is nearly always live, and when it isn't you are often just shooting a mentor or ignoring some slower threat and winning.

3 Outcome
4 Oath
1 Big Jace
1 Sylvan Library
4 Fow
1 Flusterstorm
1 Mana Drain
3 Misstep
4 Abrupt Decay
1 Brainstorm
1 Ponder
1 Preordain
1 Demonic Tutor
1 Ancestral
1 Time walk
1 Dig
1 Treasure Cruise
2 Sensei's Top
1 Engineered explosives

1 Auriok Salvagers
1 Griselbrand
1 Emrakul TAT

1 Strip mine
1 LoA
4 Forbidden Orchard
4 Fetch (Tarn, Rainforest, Strand, Delta)
2 Trop
2 Underground Sea
1 Island
5 Mox
1 Black Lotus
1 Sol Ring
1 Mana Crypt

I know people have had success with it, but I am very wary of Salvagers in Oath, since I expect 1 Oath activation to be my plan against shops and White Eldrazi, and Salvagers isn't usually.

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