Good article. I might have mentioned the interaction with pyroblast and Dack's ultimate to steal any permanent, since you already mentioned pyro. Otherwise, a pretty complete list of tricks. I do like the block with Jace Vryns prodigy and then activate to flip before lethal damage would kill him trick, but realistically flip Jace doesn't see much play.
I'm just starting to think about this deck so forgive me if this is silly, but for the blue version has anyone just tried snapcaster mage and/or spellseeker? These add to the blue count, can be found by survival, and let you tutor for and replay ancestral and time walk. Might this be better than treasure cruise if you already run ancestral?
I've always really liked your take on Dredge. I noticed this iteration removes the dark depths SB package in favor of hollowed one. Do you find this to be fast enough against PO decks and other fast decks in games 2/3 where they are also SB'ing? I really liked how your older lists could use LftL to recur Depths/Stage through Containment Priest and Grafdigger's cage. The current SB seems much more susceptible to the usual hate. What have been your experiences with this SB in comparison?
I think the combination of
2 Karn, Scion of Urza
1 Tezzeret, Artifice Master
2 Dack Fayden
1 Daretti Ingenious Iconoclast
is definitely a new planes walker package worth considering over the more traditional
2 Jace, the Minsculptor
1 Tezzeret, the Seeker
2 Dack Fayden
1 Time Vault
1 Voltaic key
in Grixis control decks.
The newer set takes up less card space, stays on mana curve, has much better board presence for a control deck, much better synergy, and fewer dead cards. Although it looses the occasional Tez, the Seeker into vault or vault/key oops I win factor, it has less variance and more utility as each of the newer cards are good by themselves, where as time vault by itself is bad, key is not great, and Tez is ok without vault if you can get enough artifacts to ultimate or find utility artifacts as needed.
I have been testing the above package in an otherwise normal Grixis control list (with a bit more artifact mana/ancient tomb and especially Tolarian Academy) with Tinker and Myr Battlesphere as the tinker target, which is also amazing for pumping Karn constructs, for drawing 2 with new Tez, and producing artifacts to sac to Daretti. Not to mention, few things are more fun than ultimating Daretti on Battlesphere for 3 copies. Finally, although @ChubbyRain already mentioned the synergy of Dack, Tez, and Karn, Daretti is actually a great choice for control decks too as he provides a permanent immune to pyroblast that repeatedly destroys artifacts or oath targets over a long game without spending mana and is very synergistic with the aforementioned cards. Finally, I'm not sure anyone has mentioned Myr battlesphere yet as the tinker target in this kind of deck, though the synergy there is pretty powerful from pumping constructs, keeping new Tez at draw 2, or providing a great target for Daretti's or Tez's ultimate.
I would love to hear what others have discovered in play testing too, but i think there is something to these cards in combination worth exploring.
PS - Sorry for the stream of consciousness post, but I'm severely sleep-deprived at the moment.
I thought the wording suggests that the dealing double damage is a replacement effect keyed by "instead" and the second ability was a triggered ability, "if it would deal damage, halve it rounded down" without a replacement i.e. no "instead". Is this not true? I'm not sure there is an issue here with two replacement effects. If one is triggered and the other a replacement then in scenario 1) each Gisella does 10 damage as there is only one replacement effect for each Gisella (no stack for replacement effects) and the triggered abilities then resolve dropping them back to 5 damage and both creatures die at end of combat. In the metamorph scenario, the activated ability puts 1 damage on the stack targeting the opponent, which gets replaced to two damage (no stack), then the opponents Gisella halves it to 1 as a triggered ability that resolves after the now 2 damage activated ability resolves, so the opponent takes one damage. If I'm wrong, then I'm so sorry for making this all more confusing.
There are some cards that I think this deck might want to consider.
With all the flashback spells, situational spells, extreme card draw, and soul fire for lifelink, firestorm is surprisingly not bad. It's similar to his sb firespout except for one red you can discard 3-4 cards and target the opponent or a planeswalker, and his creatures without touching yours and gaining a good amount of life.
This card is borderline playable normally. Here it gets lifelink possibly, and if you ultimate dack, ice plus taigam and mystic retrieval can steal a lot of permanents. Also, ice on precursor golem if that's in your meta is awesome in general.
With all the token generating planes walkers, does this really not warrant testing?
Cavern of souls
Not a big deal but uncounterable taigam is great. Then you can counter removal on him without fear. Also helps cast soulfire and mentor if you play it. Edit: should have specified that this is a one-of given other mana requirements.