[Deck] Mardu Pyromancer

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Post by ktkenshinx » 2 years ago

This is a placeholder thread. If you are interested in taking over the thread and/or writing a primer, PM the moderator team.
This is the thread to discuss the Mardu Pyromancer archetype in Modern.
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Post by motleyslayer » 2 years ago

I picked up the remaning parts I needed to finish updating to a list similar to what people are playing post MH.

Here's my list, with a few thoughts at the end

I feel that the deck needs a lot of work before the MCQ on Saturday, sideboard feels awful. I'll probably cut the rabbles and some number of wear/tear for a few copies of celestial purge and a few other cards, probably blood moons. I feel like I have too many 3 cmc spells in the main and not sure what to cut down on.

any help is great

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Post by motleyslayer » 2 years ago

played at the Toronto MCQ on Saturday to a 5-3 finish. The changes I made were -3 kolaghan's command +3 unearth in the main. In the side the changes were -2 wear//tear, -1 molten rain , -1 bontu's last reckoning, +2 blood moon, +2 celestial purge. Here's my report

Round 1 I lost to BW tokens 1-2. Game 1 I mulled to 5 because I couldn't get lands and I feel too far behind. Game 2 I outraced him. Game3 I beleive I mulled to 6 and I fell behind quickly. There wasn't much to this match.

0-1

Round 2 I quickly lose to 5 colour Niv Mizzet reborn. Game 1 I basically didn't bolt the bird and he resolved an early Niv which I couldn't deal with. Game 2 he resolved a turn 2 Wrenn and Sixx, which he top decked and I couldn't deal with. He hit the mana he needed and I couldn't keep up.

0-2, basically dead for top 8 but I wanted to see how I could recover, it actually gets really good from here.

Round 3 I quickly 2-0 storm. Game 1 was a combination of me effectively removing his mana reducers and him not drawing lands to go off without the cost reducers. Game 2 he kept a hand with multiple copies of empty the warrens and he kept having to go off for low numbers just to not die.

1-2, still not in good shape but I tell myself to take it round by round and see what happens

Round 4 I beat Cheerios 2-1. He goes off game 1 and I lose. Game 2 I applied enough pressure to kill him before he could do much. Game 3 he kept a hand with double paradoxical outcome and I run him over

2-2, getting better.

Round 5 I 2-1 Bant infect. Games 1 and 3 I basically kill any creature he has and I win. Him going to 5 cards game 1 helps. Game 2 he gets me with what I can't kill

3-2, winning 3 in a row has me in a great mood so that helped me go further

Round 6 I 2-1 some kind of Dimir prison deck running both 3 mana Lilies, chalice and the Karn, the great creator package. Game 1 I took advantage of him stumbling on lands and I ran him over. Game 2 he has double plague engineer and I can never recover. Game 3 he had several board wipes and ensnaring bridge in hand after I thoughtseized something else important, I believe some kind of walker. Later on I took the bridge. The game plan that game for most of it was just bait the board wipe and not extend into it. I think he got confused and just played stuff that was easy for me to stop

4-2, I'm at a spot where I can prize if I keep winning

Round 7 I very easily crush humans. Game 1 we both mull and he keeps a slow 6 on the play that didn't do much other than a freebooter that he uses to take an unearth instead of discard or removal. Game 2 he mulls to 6 and probably takes more damage than he should before using the deputy of detention I already knew about. He died not long after dropping the deputy

5-2, 27th after 7, with prizing down to top 32. I felt like I could probably draw last round but didn't offer it because my opponent was 35th

Round 8 I got run over by Izzet Phoenix. Game 1 I was close to stabilizing but then he drops Aria of Flame and casts a lot of spells. Game 2 came down to him needing a way to deal the last 2 damage to me and he draws into a second Phoenix

5-3 finish, not bad after an 0-2 start. I finished 36th, so just missed top 32 prizing. an interesting note is that I avoided thopter sword and Hogaak all day, I'm assuming because of my 0-2 start causing me to play people with more losses throughout the day

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Post by Algernone25 » 2 years ago

I did meh at Gencon with Mardu Pyromancer. It's mostly an old list made older with the rust I had, but overall I still think it's got potential - I just ran into a buzzsaw of Tron for most of the event.

Here's the list I'm going to be using going forward
The maindeck surgicals did a lot more work than you'd think at first blush, just because it's not as expected. As good as CB is, I don't always feel myself wanting it - same with blood moon, so I cut one and a reveler to make room for the new pyros.
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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

motleyslayer wrote:
2 years ago
5-3 finish, not bad after an 0-2 start. I finished 36th, so just missed top 32 prizing. an interesting note is that I avoided thopter sword and Hogaak all day, I'm assuming because of my 0-2 start causing me to play people with more losses throughout the day
just repeating what I said on salvation. Nice that you did not give up right away. The deck had the chance to show that it can fight through the competition.

congrats on the decent finish.
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Post by motleyslayer » 2 years ago

part of me still wants to run bedlam reveler so I might try and fit them back in

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Post by Algernone25 » 2 years ago

The fact that bedlam reveler is un-pushable, un-boltable, and basically un-chaliceable makes me like having it available. That said, it really quickly clogs up your hand if you draw multiples, so 3 feels right.
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Post by motleyslayer » 2 years ago

I can see myself cutting my 2 copies of Yawgmoth, thran physician for 2 revellers which seems reasonable

I also 4-0d FNM last week not dropping a game

Round 1 I beat burn. Game 1 he was stuck on one lands for a while and that obviously bottle necked him. Game 2 he flooded really bad and I really ran him over

Round 2 I beat infect. Game 1 he kept a poor 6 when I was on the play and I tore his hand apart. Game 2 he kept a hand that was really reliant on me not being able to deal with a scale up on a glistener elf. I took one hit from that then killed it. He then wasn't paying attention to my board and tried to scale up an inkmoth thinking he'd get me but I still had an untapped spirit for that and I killed him on the back swing

Round 3 I beat elves. G1 was close, he had a fast start after mull to 6 but then I stabilized and traded with his cards one for one while the whole time being dead to a shaman of the pack g2 he mulled to 5 and I crushed him

Round 4 I beat my buddy on mono black devotion he was just playing for fun. Had an explosive start game 1 but he dropped a phyrexian obliterator which slowed me down and forced me to finish him off with flyers. Ran him over g2

Got 3 packs of Modern Horizons for my night but didn't really open much

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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

congrats on the fnm.

Reveler would be nice post Hogaak, since people would probably ease up a bit on gy removal,
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Post by motleyslayer » 2 years ago

part of me wants to wait til Hogaak gets the ban until I run Reveller as that would get blown out by gy hate. But I did always love it before

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Post by Yawgmoth » 2 years ago


I've been playing around with this list lately, would love any input.

The idea is to use unearth to get extra mileage out of faithless looting , lightning skelemental , monastery mentor , and seasoned pyromancer .

Attacking with 3x times with skelemental early on can seriously disrupt your opponents hand and board state. Unearth also allows you to play monastery mentor for only 1B making it easier for you to get in multiple prowess triggers the turn he comes out (with lava dart you can get even more triggers for less but I haven't committed to this fully yet).

Most importantly, building around unearth adds a ton of new play patterns with faithless looting. For example, pitching a skelemental to a turn 1 faithless looting can allow you to cast it for a reduced cost turn 2. Alongside an inquisition/thoughtseize, this can leave your opponent's hand in pretty bad shape and potentially low on life.

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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

A skelemental strategy + pyromancer strategy. That looks interesting.

What are the snow covered lands for?
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Post by Yawgmoth » 2 years ago

The Fluff wrote:
2 years ago
A skelemental strategy + pyromancer strategy. That looks interesting.

What are the snow covered lands for?
Thanks! Yeah, I think it has potential. I swapped in the skelementals to replace young pyromancer that are usually in mardu pyro. Unearth helps to mitigate the restrictive mana cost of skelemental. The monastery mentor was a recent addition which replaced bedlam reveler since it can also be an unearth target. However, adding more white may be a trap. I think I may need to go back to a more standard build in terms of the only white being lingering souls. Testing will determine.

The snow-covered lands are just there instead of regular basic lands because I like the artwork. However, they can have a small psychological effect against some people if they are trying to figure out why I have them!

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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

being hit with an early skelemental looks hard to recover from. Looking forward to the results of your testings. :)

looking at the list again, is lava dart the optimal card for those two slots? What are you killing with those in your meta?
We are not a phoenix deck, and it seems pyromancer is the only card that benefit from those darts.
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Post by Yawgmoth » 2 years ago

The Fluff wrote:
2 years ago
looking at the list again, is lava dart the optimal card for those two slots? What are you killing with those in your meta?
We are not a phoenix deck, and it seems pyromancer is the only card that benefit from those darts.
The 2x Lava dart are filling the spot I'm least certain about. In theory they give me a couple of more ways to trigger monastery mentor after unearthing it. I think you are probably right about them being sub-optimal.

With the B&R announcement today, I may have to rework a few things to deal with the loss of faithless looting. What is everyone else doing to deal with this loss? It seems like Mardu Pyro is one of the "fair" decks that really got caught in the crossfire. First it was the excessive meta-wide graveyard hate and now it's a Looting ban... This is why we can't have nice things!

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Post by Simto » 2 years ago

Is there even a slight chance this deck can survive losing Faithless Looting?

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Post by Yawgmoth » 2 years ago

Simto wrote:
2 years ago
Is there even a slight chance this deck can survive losing Faithless Looting?
That's what I'm trying to figure out. I think there are a couple of questions:

1. Do we try to find another (less good) draw/discard piece to replace looting? (I.e. cathartic reunion)

2. OR do we find something to replace one of those two effects? (I.e. draw or discard). Which of the two effects are most important for our strategy?

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Post by Cyanu » 2 years ago

i don't think there are any cards that are comparable to looting for us, sure there are stuff like Cathartic Reunion or Insolent Neonate but those are either too expensive for us or too weak, we're not dredge and we don't want to just put stuff in the yard at any cost

looting was our value engine and our deck extracted card advantage by mitigating it's cost (discard 2) with gy synergies, it also allowed to discard spare lands acting as flood protection later with it's flashback and also gave us considerable card selection, which would allow us to dig for answers, threats or sb bullets

without it the entire deck kinda falls apart: we need to increase land count, our flashback cards become weaker, Unearth becomes worse and our deck overall becomes clunky and more prone to randomness...

i'm afraid the only reasonable step ahead is to go for SFM ourselves but it's also very reasonable to assume that shells that are better than mardu (like UWx or even BGx) will continue to be better with SFM and i find the idea that we get to play both SFM and Kcommand a bit 'misreable'... it makes more sense to play the best stoneblade shell rather than a worse one just for some small advantage in the pseudo-mirror

so i'm afraid that's it, it's either Stoneblade or something else entirely now

ps: mardu shadow was a meta assassin in a gy dominated format, i reccomend against this deck despite it doesn't play looting

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Post by Algernone25 » 2 years ago

Simto wrote:
2 years ago
Is there even a slight chance this deck can survive losing Faithless Looting?
In a word? No. The deck was on the fringes before, Looting allowed it get get some value going to draw the game late enough to get some wins. Now our engine is gone, Horizon's attempt to give us relevance with Seasoned Pyromancer really doesn't do any one thing well enough to warrant it carrying the deck, The best replacement we can get is Night's Whisper and I don't feel the deck can afford to spend more life with how greedy it already is.

I'm likely going to be trying to move various parts of the deck before the prices bottom out.
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Post by Yawgmoth » 2 years ago

Algernone25 wrote:
2 years ago
Simto wrote:
2 years ago
Is there even a slight chance this deck can survive losing Faithless Looting?
In a word? No. The deck was on the fringes before, Looting allowed it get get some value going to draw the game late enough to get some wins. Now our engine is gone, Horizon's attempt to give us relevance with Seasoned Pyromancer really doesn't do any one thing well enough to warrant it carrying the deck, The best replacement we can get is Night's Whisper and I don't feel the deck can afford to spend more life with how greedy it already is.

I'm likely going to be trying to move various parts of the deck before the prices bottom out.
What about ransack the lab? It does 3 things which Looting also did: 1. Digs through your deck, 2. Fills up the graveyard with cards of your choice, 3. Lets you pitch/avoid drawing unwanted cards at a particular time making you more consistent. The mana cost and lack of flashback is obviously worse but wizards obviously thinks that it was too cheap for what it did.

Ransack is better at #1 than Looting since it digs three deep instead of two. It's worse at #2 as you cannot pitch cards already in your hand. #3 is worse in the sense that you cannot get rid of unwanted cards in hand but could also be better in some cases because you can dig three deep and potentially avoid three bad top decks (rather than the two you'd get with Looting).

I was thinking about Night's Whisper as well but the life loss hurts and you don't get to fill up your graveyard. It depends on what you are trying to do but because I am not ready to give up on my Mardu Unearth brew I am motivated to fill my graveyard while filtering my top decks which Ransack does.

I've also considered Nahiri, the harbinger as this gives me a way to draw cards while filling my graveyard with unearth targets. I know people have experimented with her in Mardu pyromancer in the past so this isn't totally left field but I'm not sure if it will fit the bill.

Thoughts?

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Post by Simto » 2 years ago

I doubt any of the 2 mana replacements are fast enough :( It's really sad because the deck was very fun to play against.
My best friend was starting to buy cards for it after we tried some proxy games with it. He was starting to get some of the more expensive cards now like Thoughtseize and stuff like that, but those cards will always be good in different decks. I feel bad for my friend :( Hope we can figure out a good deck to use his other cards in.

I saw the Skelemental version at the GP which looked insane. Hope that version of the deck can somehow survive.

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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

Yawgmoth wrote:
2 years ago
The Fluff wrote:
2 years ago
looking at the list again, is lava dart the optimal card for those two slots? What are you killing with those in your meta?
We are not a phoenix deck, and it seems pyromancer is the only card that benefit from those darts.
The 2x Lava dart are filling the spot I'm least certain about. In theory they give me a couple of more ways to trigger monastery mentor after unearthing it. I think you are probably right about them being sub-optimal.

With the B&R announcement today, I may have to rework a few things to deal with the loss of faithless looting. What is everyone else doing to deal with this loss? It seems like Mardu Pyro is one of the "fair" decks that really got caught in the crossfire. First it was the excessive meta-wide graveyard hate and now it's a Looting ban... This is why we can't have nice things!
ah, sorry I didn't notice the mentors. There's certainly use for lava darts since you have those.
As for the darts being sub-optimal or not.. that will be answered by what meta you will play the deck in. There's some 1 toughness creatures that are decent targets for the dart, just from the top of my head - noble hierarch, soulherder, most of the infect creatures, several artifact creatures in hardened scales.

the meta wide gy hate should decrease now that loot is gone. In the next days I'm going to be testing some cards, to see which ones can be a satisfactory replacement for the loot.
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Post by motleyslayer » 2 years ago

kind of a rough ban for us yesterday since we were really one of the only fair decks playing looting. On the plus side there's gonna be less gy hate hopefully. I don't even know what replacement for looting I like though

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Post by Yawgmoth » 1 year ago

Has anyone had any success with this deck since the ban? I've seen some lists posting decent results playing ransack the lab and Kroxa, Titan of Death's Hunger.

Ransack is obviously slower but it's got potential. I think it's probably the best of our options.

Kroxa is interesting because you can cast it Turn 2 for the discard effect and then escape it later when you have the mana. If you hit them with a Thoughtseize or Inquisition in Turn 1 you can maximize the chance that they take the 3 damage. Unlike Reveler or Hazoret, the card actually does something in the early turns. If you use K Command or Unearth you can even loop his discard effect multiple times. In an amazing dreamworld you could use Dreadhorde Arcanist to loop Unearth (this is an engine I've always wanted to utilize in a Mardu shell) and keep recasting Kroxa for a repeatable discard/bolt effect.

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Post by motleyslayer » 1 year ago

so this list won a Face to Face Games Toronto Sunday Showdown not long ago. Deck seems interesting but was also in the hands of a great player

mb ashiok seems weird but probably a meta call due to expecting a bunch of titan decks. I wanna get the copies of kroxa I need to build this deck and try it though

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