Dark Petition Storm Sideboarding

I just bought into MTGO with my favorite Vintage deck, DPS. I've built a list that I like for the maindeck, but since I've mainly played in proxied paper with a small number of opponents, I am a little unsure of sideboarding. I have a couple of questions, if there any experienced pilots who have insight I'd appreciate it.

  1. I see a lot of Mindbreak Trap in sideboards. When exactly do you want to bring in this card? Against Xerox? Against PO?

  2. I've played against a couple of decks, including hatebears/humans, where I wanted to kill Thalias and Lovinias. I see Collective Brutality, Karakas and Fatal Push in SBs, presumably for these matchups (and Chain of Vapor also does work here). I sort of like the idea of killing multiple things at once... is the CMC a dealbreaker on Toxic Deluge?

last edited by Stasis_Kismet
  1. I used to bring Mindbreak Trap in for PO, but I started just racing them pretty much. It can be useful against shops as well sometimes, but there are better things to bring in against them (Tinker, Hurkyl's, etc). Maybe better players disagree with me, but I wouldn't bring it in against Xerox... imo DPS should almost always be taking an aggressive posture, so prioritizing trying to stop Xerox from executing its plan is probably not going to set you up for success most of the time.

  2. Yeah, it basically just costs too much when you consider the creatures you're trying to kill with it. If your opponent is playing sphere creatures, you're better off dealing with the first one immediately and then going off, rather than saving up four mana and then seeing them play another sphere effect, then getting to five and seeing them play a third sphere effect, etc. It lines up even worse against Lavinia, because you're probably only playing 12-13 lands in the first place so you're actually pretty likely to get stuck on two lands and lose the game with Toxic Deluge in your hand and Lavinia on the board.

last edited by craw_advantage

Massacre used to see some play to attack multiple Thalias and W-Hate bears, but with Lavinia, its not as useful. Other sweepers that have been used are Bontu's Last Reckoning and Balance (if you splash white).

  1. Defense Grid is probably the best thing to bring in against Xerox Style decks. Resolving this early really puts pressure on them. I've also boarded in extra duress effects. Another tactic I've used is to have Flusterstorm as a 1 or 2 of in my main/sideboard to combat their counterspells. In big turns, this thing can be uncounterable.

  2. Karakas is probably a must right now with how much Lavinia is floating around, otherwise going the Oath Route out of the board where you board in 4 Oath of Druids, 2 Creatures, and a Gaea's Blessing. Maindecking a few green lands is good nowadays for having Abrupt Decay anyway. Toxic Deluge is one of my favorites for killing multiple creatures, otherwise playing Fatal Push is another good one. Lavinia isn't even THAT scary, because you can easily push past it with 3 lands in play. I have seen a play of "Push Thalia, untap, upkeep mystical for Will, Draw, Ritual, Ritual, Will, Push Lavinia, play rest of stuff, Kill you".

Pack Rat is another reasonable choice in lieu of the Oath idea.

Defense Grid is definitely the best card in the deck to bypass counterspells. Otherwise, depending on your splash color, cards like Abeyance and City of solitude can do the trick as well.
Beware that people tend to bring in artifact hate post board though.
Toxic Deluge can be too costly to be effective sometimes but is still better than most alternatives (such as Pyroclasm, Bountu's last reckoning, Virtue's Ruin, ...).
Balance is godly if you are splashing white, and as Soly said Karakas is a must have since it deals with Thalia and Lavinia.
Engineered Explosives and Echoing Truth are also worth considering as catch-all answers.
Pack Rat used to be a great plan B vs hate decks but Ballista slammed that door shut for good. Make sure to have Mentor and/or Tinker Bot as a more resilient win-con in the 75 though.
Oath of Druids can be an option too with a green splash.

Welcome to MTGO! Glad to have you.

  1. In most cases you want to leave the Traps in the SB against Xerox and just lean on the discard, Flusterstorms and Defense Grids. The problem with Traps is that you game plan is basically trying to limit the amount of interaction the opponent has access to during your turn between the discard and Defense Grids - your opponent can't cast multiple spells if you have a Grid in play and likely won't have multiple counters if you've been stripping their hand - so Trap is accomplishing the opposite of what you want it to do. Board it in against PO and the Mirror. I also like it against Shops because after you Hurkyl's them, they will generally play out their threats first and then let you trap whatever their prison piece is. That depends on the exact list and SB configuration though.
  2. If you really want the sweeper effect, Deluge is probably your best bet. However, SB space is limited. In general, the dealbreaker on Toxic Deluge is the lack of utility of the card. Karakas is an extra mana source against Shops and a discard spell against Control/Combo decks. Fatal Push also has some function as removal against Shops (hitting Revoker) though I've honestly cut it for another Brutality. The problem with Deluge is that it's only really good at dealing with these hatebear/eldrazi matchups and that in my opinion isn't enough to justify the SB slot. Now, your experience may vary. I'm a nerd so I keep track of my matchups and I see that over the past month I played against Eldrazi 4.5% of the time, "Fish" 6.3% of the time, and a couple Humans decks (like <2%). Conversely, Xerox + Survival has been ~35% of my matchups, with Shops another 10%. Having Karakas and Brutality are then more valuable because they do more in those matchups.

I like Chains of Mephistopheles against PO, since they usually don’t have enchantment removal against DPS. Chains shuts down much of their deck. You may need Karakas or Liliana against BW PO because they bring in Kambal.

Against Thalia, I like creatures. Phyrexian Obliterator, for his immunity to Ballista, as the finisher, and a collection of variable underlings such as Pack Rat, Black Knight, and Plague Spitter. This usually catches them off guard.

I haven’t played against the new card , Lavinia, but I would probably cut Dark Petition and go back to Burning Wish.

last edited by Guest

There's got to be something better that black knight?


Nothing that much better than Black Knight, other than Vampire Hexmage which has some other utilities.

Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet is also one of my favs. Thrashing Wumpus a classic.

Dread of Night.

last edited by Guest

You’re encouraging me to bust out some Lake of the Dead... that’s not nice!

last edited by wfain

@john-cox said in Dark Petition Storm Sideboarding:

There's got to be something better that black knight?

Order of the Ebon Hand? 😉


I like the chains idea, but can Ritual Storm really afford to have sb slots dedicated to the outcome matchup?

I love Phyrexian Obliterator but since we'd be bringing it in mana denial/sphere matchups, can we reliably pay XBBBB to cast that thing when Ritual is mostly a colored mana fix?
Black knight just isn't good enough and plague spitter doesn't deal with Lavinia without therapy.
Pack rat just doesn't pan out against shops between revokers and Ballistas.
I think the only reliable plan B in the current state of things is Tinker Bot and/or Mentor if you splash white.

I like the Burning wish idea, it's much better than Petition in the face of Lavinia and/or at finding answers to disruption. It also does a better job at abusing broken cards like LED, Demonic Consultation and Gifts Ungiven. But Dark Petition has a lot more raw power and consistency.

Thanks for the many insights everyone. It's been very helpful. I think I've landed on an SB configuration I'm happy with (at least to begin with) but I do have a follow up questions: is it worth bringing Hurkyl's against PO?

@stasis_kismet In my experience, bringing in Hurkyl's has not been worth it because being reactive against PO tends to be a losing plan since they plenty of countermagic. I have found the PO matchup extremely difficult. Grid + discard has been the best plan I have found, but even that is typically not enough. They're just better able to disrupt your gameplan than you're able to disrupt theirs, and they're just about as fast as you are.

last edited by revengeanceful

If you want to beat outcome, you can sideboard Sadistic Sacrament. This card will beat the pants off most outcome lists.

@13nova said in Dark Petition Storm Sideboarding:

If you want to beat outcome, you can sideboard Sadistic Sacrament. This card will beat the pants off most outcome lists.

I always wonder why Cap effects aren't played more often, when there are so many decklists out there that have all of 1-3 win conditions.

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