Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Wanna Win NOW (WWN) Deck

"Why haven't I won yet?!"
This is a completely untested but potentially scary basis for a RG Infect deck. I call it "Wanna Win Now", or WWN. The reason for that is because there are six combos (all requiring Assault Strobe) that can result in a turn three win.

4 x Spikeshot Elder
4 x Ichorclaw Myr
4 x Blight Mamba
4 x Necropede
4 x Putrefax

4 x Groundswell
4 x Vines of Vastwood
4 x Assault Strobe
3 x Grafted Exoskeleton
3 x Livewire Lash

4 x Rootbound Crag
6 x Mountain
12 x Forest

Assault Strobe is necessary for the turn three win. It must be combined with a two mana infect creature and an instant that gives it +4/+4. Assault Strobe is a sorcery, so the smart opponent will likely block it, but if they can't stop it, that's game over.

Turn 1: Play a land.
Turn 2: Play another land, cast Ichorclaw Myr, Blight Mamba, or Necropede
Turn 3: Play another land, cast Assault Strobe, and if unblocked, cast Groundswell or Vines of Vastwood. This will either cost RG or RGG depending on which boost is being used.

I'm not 100% certain how to calculate the cumulative probability on this (EDIT: though I give it a shot in the first comment and it MIGHT be about 21.8%), but those are the best odds I've ever seen for a potential turn three win. The linchpin of having to draw an Assault Strobe by turn three keeps the odds from being completely favorable, but the rest is drawing 1 of 12 creatures, 1 of 8 instants, and having 3 land in play by turn three (even if you use Groundswell, you need landfall for it to be +4/+4).

Of course, if you DON'T win on turn three, that horrible failure doesn't leave one with no options. The boost spells combined with infect are still potent, Grafted Exoskeleton on Spikeshot Elder means it can give an opponent 3 poison counters for each 1RR you have available each turn, the boost spells combined with Livewire Lash gives a way to put poison counters on the opponent even if they've got a good defense going, and casting Putrefax is roughly the equivalent of throwing a temper tantrum and saying "I should have won by now!"

As I've said, this deck is completely untested, and for all I know it would get slaughtered in tournaments. Nonetheless, I'm proud of it because it's a deck I haven't seen before. It may turn out to be a lame duck, but darn it, it's MY lame duck.

Of course, if it IS tournament viable, I suspect I'm going to be outvoted on what to call it, and WWN will fall by the wayside. They'll probably call it "Infection Assault", or something. BLEH.


  1. Assuming you can calculate the cumulative probability by multiplying each of the odds of drawing a particular card needed by turn three (assuming one goes first), then the probability of drawing the needed cards are about 21.8%, or a little over 1 in 5 games (5 out of 23, to be precise).

  2. The name is actually pretty likely to stick considering the titles people have given to Magic decks over the year-- ____ Deck Wins, Captain Crunch, Sligh... I've survived some weird freaking deck names in the decade and change (duocade? Freaking lacuna) I've played.

    Mechanically, the only problem here would be blockers... And they wouldn't remain a problem for long.


    Lets first work out what must be in the top ten cards of the deck. (7 in hand plus 3 turns and draws) (I'm going to ignore things like having a no land hand followed by drawing three lands, as that is very rare and I am lazy)
    I'm also going to replace rootbound crags with two forests and two mountains, as it make the math much simpler.
    (n choose r is n!/(r!*(n-r)!))

    We need:
    1 mountain (8)
    2 forest (14)
    1 Ichorclaw Myr, Blight Mamba, or Necropede (12)
    1 Assault Strobe (4)
    1 Pump spell (8)

    So there are
    (8 choose 1 mountains)*(14 choose 2 forests)*(12 choose 1 creatures)*(4 choose 1 double strike things)*(8 choose 1 pumps)
    ways of getting all the right cards in 6 cards. You have to then account for the fact that you're drawing then cards over three turns, but I'll finish that later.

    First, I sleep.

    Perhaps include lightning bolt or something to kill blockers?

  4. I would totally offer to try it out with you online. I have a suspend/counter deck that I think could spell defeat for this, although I do like this deck.

  5. There's actually a discussion about this deck and RG infect in general at the official forum (that I started, though it didn't start out as a WWN deck). Someone's posted an excellent variant with lightning bolts and Birds of Paradise (post #13 by Ankiseth) -

  6. You probably want Smoldering Spires, and possibly Teetering Peaks as well.

  7. Actually, he probably doesn't want either of those given his already low quantity of mountains. He needs to have a land come into play untapped on turns two and three and have very specific mana for the central combo to work. Putting in Smoldering Spires or Teetering Peaks lowers the chance of that significantly.

    This isn't a very strong combo though - it falters to just about anybody hitting their curb properly. Red Deck Wins just laughs at you and bolts your creature in response to Groundswell or Vines. Ramp decks have a Birds of Paradise out or a Llanowar Elf, and if he figures out what you're doing they'll be untapped for sure. Wall of Omens is just as likely to handle it. Sure, it will go off sometimes. But it's a lot rarer than the chances of you getting the cards together.

  8. Is it wrong that I though of an awful pun for the deck's name as soon as I saw it? 'Strobe Blighting'