1st place on AVACYN ANGELS!!!

Played this in a local event to finish with a 4-0 record taking first and coming home with a Tundra! 16 players came to battle in Allentown, PA @ Cloud City Games! Deck and list felt great!!!

I built this to prey on Gush token decks, shops, and eldrazi. Turns out it does just that...


2 Jace the Mind Sculptor
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Time Walk
2 Fact of Fiction
1 Dig Through Time
1 Senseis Divining Top
1 Brainstorm

2 Archangel Avacyn
2 Snapcaster Mage
2 Vendillion Clique
1 Notion Thief

2 Moat
1 Enlightened Tutor
1 Engineered Explosives
4 Swords to Plowshares

4 Force of Will
2 Mana Drain
4 Mental Misstep
2 Flusterstorm

1 Black Lotus
1 Sol Ring
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Emerald
1 Mox Jet
1 Karakas
1 Library of Alexandria
4 Flooded Strand
1 Polluted Delta
1 Marsh Flats
3 Tundra
1 Underground Sea
3 Island
2 Plains

2 Path to Exile
2 Disenchant
2 Steel Sabotage
1 Grafdiggers Cage
2 Containment Priest
3 Rest in Peace
1 Notion Thief
1 Balance
1 Supreme Verdict

Rd 1 UWR Landstill with Mentor
G1 - Moat holding the fort. Sneak in Avacyn and friends
G2 - Avacyn under Standstill. Forcing the issue and win

Rd 2 TKS Shops
G1 - Sphere and Ravager turn 1. Almost come back but TKS seals it
G2 - Grind to mid game and land a Moat. I control Hangarback and Ravagers from doing anything.
G3 - I have 2 moxen 2 Sabotage 1 land. Play my stuff Sabotage a few spells, play Jace and control into Avacyn win

Rd 3 Dan Miller on 4c Gush
G1 - Turn 1 Mentor off Lotus but 1 land. I Swords him Misstep back. I sit on Library a few turns. Clique trades with a token. Then Notion Thief steals a Gush draw and win from there.
G2 - He forces my FOF and Jace. I Thief a Gush draw and control the game. I counter Sphinx and yawg will. Land 2nd Thief and coast to win

Rd 4 Blue Moon
G1 - Clique into Jace into Avacyn wins
G2 - Control the Game and Clique gets him to 6 life and a top deck Chandra does things after I fatesealed it to bottom earlier
G3 - He's on a mulligan to 5. I have Recall and play draw go a few turns and land a Jace and he goes the distance

Conclusion. I can't wait to play again 🙂

last edited by tattoocek

@tattoocek just very very impressive. I'm kinda floored to see the list and imagine it's games against Gush and TKS decks. Way to make everything instant speed. If only there were a Jace that had flash this deck would be reach draw go nirvana.

last edited by Topical_Island

Hey, how many times did you Drain something that was uncounterable via Cavern, just to get mana to play a Fof or a Moat or something the next turn?

Congrats on your win Josh. Saturday I was thinking again about Avacyn (since my LGS has a big poster of her), and it had to be you who made it playable 😄

Moat is an awesome card. Pity it's so expensive...

@Topical_Island draining uncounterable things definitely happens haha. One of the strengths of the deck is definitely being able to play the majority of my deck at instant speed that is for sure. And an instant speed Jace...let me know when you wake up 😛

I love this deck, mana drain is such a dead archetye, right?

Love notion thief it's just a blowout sometimes

Congrats on the success. I built a very similar deck for the May P9 and found that I never drew Moat when I needed it. How many times did you search it up with Enlightened Tutor?

I went 1-3 and probably didn't even deserve that. The deck played very poorly. I didn't play 4x Swords in the main, but I think I ran a 2/2 split of Swords and Verdicts. I was running 1 Ojutai, 1 Baneslayer, and 1 Consectrated Sphinx instead of the Avacyn's. Nonetheless I thought the idea was powerful enough on paper. Might need to try Avacyn (didn't own them last month).

@enderfall, I definitely found myself tutoring up moat often enough. And vs TKS you're able to put it on top of the deck, draw it, and laugh at them lol. I wanted pseudo 3 moats in the main and e-Tutor does just that.

I tested sphinx and it felt a wee bit Mana intensive. Probably still playable if I went to 3 Mana Drain. I also tested Restoration angel and baneslayer angel and avacyn being bigger than Restoration was huge. And avacyn having flash and making my team kind of unkillable for a turn put her above baneslayer in my book. There's also situations where you can purposely attack into an opponents creatures with say Snapcaster and if he dies in combat the angel is flipping...it's something that easily gets overlooked. I even considered running 1 mulldrifter and maybe 1 therapy to get angel to flip on my terms other than just baiting someone into a poor blocking situation...

@enderfall Following the UW midrange approach, I tried few months ago Blue Angels (or Dance Magic Dance as Rich Shay named it link text). I love the idea, but deck lacks instawin factor and too many times the opponent went crazy before I could take control.

Moat seems a big improvement since it can be played reactive and proactively, and doesn't affect our fliers. I'm just sad to lose spirit of the labyrinth, a card that I'd love to break (but feels plain bad against eldrazis).

@xouman I love Spirit of the Labyrinth too. But it was too much of a nonbo with JTMS. I actually believe I'd go to 3 JTMS if I play the deck again. Moat plus Jace is hard for every deck to beat. Then again the deck felt fine with 2 Jace. The 3rd was cut for Notion Thief

@tattoocek said:

@xouman I love Spirit of the Labyrinth too. But it was too much of a nonbo with JTMS. I actually believe I'd go to 3 JTMS if I play the deck again. Moat plus Jace is hard for every deck to beat. Then again the deck felt fine with 2 Jace. The 3rd was cut for Notion Thief

Yep, I understand. If you can protect Jace, there is no reason to play SotL, you are already getting CA. And with moat, SotL is pretty lame. However Notion Thief is the only black card and seems a bit weird to play black just for it (but you already play 5 basics, and you don't need thief against wasteland decks, so it could be not a problem at all). Would any cavern help here? Maybe I love caverns too much.

What I miss here is mana crypt, it seems a must with the high CCs. I'd even play ancient tomb in the SB probably. It's hard to believe you had always the mana you wanted, 17 lands is really nice but crypt is among the best accelerators in the game.

@xouman Thief was a morning of change. I wanted to add 2 cards that just trumped the Gush archetype. Thief does that better than anything white offers to be honest. Also considered green for sylvan and Dramoka. But again thieves are just the best. If I didn't draw the Moat plan immediately vs Gush, I could get a thief in blowout fashion. I was tempted to play Crypt but the fact that I can't remove it easily, and I'm often in a grindy game I decided against it. Black can be a heavier splash too. I considered baleful strix, 1 therapy, and some sb cards. But ultimately Thief is all I wanted for black...

5 basics proved to be insane vs blue moon, eldrazi, and shops clearly. Vs eldrazi, they want you to fetch basics and come mid game they can dismantle you with wastes and Ghost quarters. Quarter is great because most ppl only play 2 or 3 basics where I'm on 5, it's very hard to lose to pure Mana denial.

Cavern, Karakas, Library, and waste effects were all battling for position in the deck and ultimately landed on Library because again, in an opener it can win the game single handedly, and Karakas is insane with Clique and Avacyn. So yeah haha

Mana Crypt is probably more doable if I added Demonic Tutor, Tinker, and Sphinx of the Steel Wind...which is a legitimate option.

Can you explain why you think this deck is good against Gush? Sounds like you only faced it once and had active Library in one game and a huge mana advantage in the second, not mention resolving Thief into Gush twice.

I've beaten Mentor with Bant Collected Company, but that doesn't mean I think I was favored. I guess I don't really understand the hype on the basis of a single 2-0 match. Is there something I'm missing here?

last edited by wappla

I'm not basing it solely on the events results. Leading up to the event I tested it vs pyromancer Gush and mentor. And basically those decks lose to moat. Especially in game 1. Post board ypu protect moat, or you get a notion Thief blowout play. It's good enough vs Gush when piloted well. That's all.

Library is there to trump Gush, 2 Moat 1 e-Tutor is there to trump Gush, and thieves are there to trump Gush. The deck certainly has game vs Gush. Like I said I built the deck with eldrazi, Gush, and shops in mind. In testing and in the event it did just that...

Before adding thieves and fofs, Gush was a little more of an issue, but after the fact, I like my chances with the deck and tight play...

Look at the top 3 decks from p9 challenge. Grixis pyromancer is definitely not beating moat. Unless you count 1 jtms or JVP mill is suppose.

2nd place list can not beat moat. And 3rd place list has 2 wear/tear in the 75 to beat moat. I'll take my chances on moat putting in most of my work vs Gush but there are certainly games where I keep mentor off the board, cast some of my own CA and win with fliers.

Point being this deck is definitely tuned in to fight Gush...

For the "insta-win" factor, this deck can accommodate Tinker for SotSW. Maybe good enough?

After testing a little, I think 2 Plains feels too much. The 2nd should be on the sideboard or be another land IMO. Between 2 Plains, Karakas and Marsh Flats (after you've got Underground Sea) that 2nd plains feels clunky.

And I always feel adding black JUST for Thief is not that great. At least Demonic Tutor could be in there. 😉

@fsecco I actually love the 2nd Plains. I could see adding Demonic Tutor. The more black cards I add, the more I'd want a 2nd black producing land. The 2 Plains is a nod to eldrazi and shops. I could see it being a Scrubland if I upped the black card count.

Additionally the reason I avoided Tinker Sphinx is because I want to minimize the amount of "bad draws" the deck gets and increase consistency. That's the same reason why landstill and old UW angels lists always ommited tinker. But again it's a metagame deck so tweak it as you choose 😛

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