Finally got a few test games in with this deck over the past few weekends. I won't post a total play-by-play but I did update the first post with the actual deck as it stands now - you can see compared to my OP, I did eschew the Sunforger package for now and also went lower budget due to a lot of the cards I wanted to run being out of stock in my LGS and in use or nonexistent in my collection. I have a few thoughts:
1) Quintorius, Field Historian
is a surprisingly good commander, generating a pretty steady stream of value. I went 1/3 in terms of wins, but was competitive in the other two games.
2) Bag of Holding
is the best card in the deck by a lot. I have been lucky enough to draw it every game, and it was huge and was the reason I won in the actual win (especially since I got to use it twice via Junk Diver
). Mistveil Plains
which has also appeared every game has also been a rockstar as has Scrabbling Claws
but that's no surprise - I figured those would be great, I just hadn't guessed how amazing Bag would be.
3) I have yet to draw my favorite card and the reason for this deck's existence (Auriok Salvagers
), which is a mega bummer and may be coloring my opinion on some other cards on the cut list...
4) Bomat Courier
has also been a house, although it helps I had it turn 1 in one game so it effecitively "drew" 5 cards before the table could block it. In the winning game though, it worked to just pitch my hand to it for one card after a suicide attack thanks to MVP Bag of Holding
stashing all those cards for later.
5) I am surprised at how crucial sac outlets have felt; this deck actually struggles to keep its 'yard full enough sometimes. Goblin Bombardment
is probably the 3rd best card in the deck after Mistveil and Bag, and makes me want more sac outlets.
So those are general thoughts. Here's what is 99.9999% getting cut before I play again:
- Wand of Vertebrae
: Blind milling is actually kind of bad in this deck. Codex Shredder
gets a pass because its other effect is so good, but Wand shuffling isn't that great and it exiles itself so it can't even be looped with salvagers.
- Digsite Engineer
: Without a Salvager loop running I don't actually trigger Historic effects like this that much, and even when I do I found that paying for a 2/2/ or 3/3 just wans't a thing I could reliably afford. This was a Nessian Courser
in one game, and a dead draw that got fed to the claws in the other.
- Signal Pest
: Was hilarious with Bomat Courier
in one game for some early aggro reminiscent of Kaladesh Standard, but is abysmmal late. I want ways to make my spirits spookier but this ain't it.
- Cursed Mirror
: Maybe my meta isn't good for it? Everyone keeps buzzing about this but it's been a Manalith
every game. Commander's Sphere
is a manalith too, but at least it pitches itself for a card and gets looped or builds loops with Sun Titan
and Scrap Trawler
- Slayers' Stronghold
- Cute utility card, does nothing. There's a million utility lands I'd like to run so this is out.
I'm currently showing at 101 cards here but 100 on the app I used to transcribe and 99 in play so I need to recount? But a few things I'm thinking of adding:
1) Sac outlets! I'm definitely replacing Stronghold with High Market
. I'm also looking at Martyr's Cause
or Blasting Station
or possibly even Claws of Gix
. It'd be Spirit Bonds
if I had one, but I don't so those are the contenders for now.
2) More instant-speed interaction. Top of my list right now is to buy more copies of Swords to Plowshares
, Chaos Warp
, and Generous Gift
as soon as I can. I may have to settle for Lightning Bolt
or Skywhaler's Shot
in the interim (bleh).
3) More rummage/wheel effects: My only Wheel of Fortune
, Valakut Awakening // Valakut Stoneforge
, and Reforge the Soul
are currently in use. I also don't seem to own a copy of Heartwarming Redemption
? While I wait to buy or shuffle those around, I'll be looking at "weaker" effects like Cathartic Reunion
and Tormenting Voice
4) Conjurer's Bauble
: Mishra's Bauble is so great, I'm inclined to try its weaker brother (I don't own Urza's Bauble
at this time, sadly).
Top of my want list is currently Urza's Saga
(it's an enchantment for Reconstruct that fetches Bag of Holding, or fetches Sol Ring, or fetches Expedition Map to go find Mistveil Plains or High Market) and Goblin Engineer
for better redundancy and power. Also intended to buy an Akroma's Will
as a blowout card, but it was out of stock. Chances are, they will probably get edged out for the more universal removal as well as maybe better mana (this deck's mana is garbage and it wants Arid Mesa
, Sunbaked Canyon
, Fabled Passage
, and a Sacred Foundry
to fetch so badly it hurts).
A few other cards on my radar to cut and free up space:
- Quicksmith Genius
, Teshar, Ancestor's Apostle
: Digsite Engineer is partically getting cut now for mana constraints, but also because it's hard to trigger if I'm not looping trinkets with Auriok Salvagers
. I have not yet drawn Teshar and only drew Genius once. Genius seemed okay (he drew two cards). But I suspect these two's days are numbered since they're hard to reliably generate value off of.
- The "Big Reanimator" Package: Ruin Grinder
, Eternal Dragon
, Angel of the Ruins
, and Combustible Gearhulk
+ Feldon of the Third Path
: This seemed really fun, and Grinder and Dragon were pretty great when drawn, but Feldon doesn't actually trigger Quintorius and this deck's one win (and one "last man standing barely lost") were on the back of a horde of 5/3 spirits rampaging around and pumped by Hofri or Virtue. These are fun, but as I get more good stuff for the deck I suspect that everything else is just better.
- Lorehold Excavation
: This card is so flavorful, but again I've found blind milling quite poor for my deck. I haven't drawn it yet, but given how I felt about Wand in the game I had it this will probably get cut sooner rather than later.