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Magic: The Gathering» Forums » Strategy

Subject: My Galepowder Mage deck rss

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Stephen Coney
Croatia
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I recently got some help here on building multiplayer decks. I had an idea for a deck and want some input. The contents are limited by the cards that I have, but I'm open to all suggestions.

Here is the deck list:

Galepowder Mage x4
Changeling Titan x3
Changeling Hero x2
Bone shredder x4
Avan Riftwatcher x4
Highway Bandit x4
Deadwood Treefolk x4
Woodripper x2
Monk Realist x2
Gravedigger x3
Magus of the Abyss x1
Yavimaya granger x2

Creatures: 35

Cream of the Crop x1
Repopulate x1
Wanderer’s Twig x1

Other Spells: 2

Lands:
Terramorphic Expanse x4
Swamp x5
Forest x7
Plains x6

What makes the deck work is the Galepowder mage and the Changelings in combination with the other creatures’ enters-and-leaves-play abilities.

You play an Aven Riftwatcher and gain two life, then the Galepowder Mage attacks and selects the Riftwatcher to exile and you gain two life again, at the end of the turn the Riftwatcher comes back into play and you again gain 2 life. The mage gets killed and you play the Deadwook Treefolk or Gravedigger to get it back into your hand. The Woodripper destroys artifacts, Monk Realist enchantments, the Bone Shredder destroys creatures and the Highway Bandit reduces an opponent’s life and give you life. Yavimaya Granger fetches lands. The Changelings championing mechanic functions the same way.

It also resets vanishing and fade counters. It’s a pity that my Blastoderms have Shroud (although Championing doesn’t target and thus ignores Shroud)

It seems to work fine when I play against myself, although sometimes it takes a few turns to get going, which is why I think of it as a multiplayer deck.

Since I play against a very limited pool of players, how does the deck look? Is it unbalanced? Are there some cards that would really rock (not elementals - I’ve already got an elemental deck that uses Evoke).

The biggest problem I can see is the echo cost of the Grangers and Shredders, which will have to be paid the turn after they are used. However, with seven creatures that retrieve creatures from the graveyard, I can probably just let them go. Also, I decided not to use elementals in this deck, since I already have a deck that heavily leans on the evoke mechanism.
 
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Brendon Russell
New Zealand
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Has the makings of a fun deck - I've been known to produce some Galepowder Mage shenanigans myself!

Some thoughts:

- not enough lands - your mana curve seems too high for 22. I'd start with 24.

- possibly not enough non-creature spells.

- needs a backup plan to Galepowder Mage, in the event that your Mages get removed on sight, as they undoubtedly will once your opponents catch on to your plan, or you don't draw them. Mistmeadow Witch performs a similar function, but needs more mana and means substituting one of your colours for blue. Noncreature alternatives include Momentary Blink, Turn to Mist and another similar spell from Kamigawa block that I can't remember the name of (I think it adds a +1/+1 counter to the creature when it returns to play).

- May be able to use a(nother) big 'finisher'. Woodfall Primus and Angel of Despair are a couple in your deck's colours that come to mind, and can do nasty things to your opponent with Galepowder Mage. They may not be budget-friendly though.

- Wickerbough Elder (from Eventide) will work similarly to Woodripper, but is cheaper and hits both artifacts and enchantments so it can replace Monk Realist as well.

Hitting all 3 colours consistently always has the potential to be problematic, so:

- Borderland Ranger/Civic Wayfinder (identical except for creature type) can work with Galepowder Mage to help avoid colour screw, and keep your hand filled with a land drop each turn. I run 4 x Borderland Ranger in a 3-colour deck with Galepowder Mage and they work really well. I see you have Yavimaya Grangers for a similar purpose, but these alternatives avoid the echo cost issue with the tradeoff of not accelerating your mana.

- Evolving Wilds (from Rise of the Eldrazi) is functionally identical to Terramorphic Expanse, so you can effectively have 5-8 Expanses if you want.

- Murmuring Bosk (from Morningtide) looks to be close to the ideal land for this deck, especially if you go with Wickerbough Elders which ups your Treefolk+Changeling count further. The potential life-loss is offset by your Aven Riftwatcher plan. It's a bit less budget-friendly than some other options, but a reliable mana base is often the best place to invest a few extra $!
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Stephen Coney
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Thanks for the great advice. I can't believe I hadn't thought of the Wickerbough elders. I've got two of them, so that's an easy switch. I'll try to hunt up some of the other cards as well. The Borderland Rangers are a good idea and I'll happily replace the Yavimaya Grangers.

As far as getting and keeping the Galepowder mages in play, I could add Beseech the Queen, and I was thinking that even if my opponents destroy the mages, with the Deadwook Treefolk and Gravediggers, I can keep casting them. Maybe that's optimistic.

Again, I really appreciate your help.
 
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Brendon Russell
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Glad I was able to help! I love comes-into-play enters-the-battlefield creatures myself, and my favourite decks are always built around them.

I must admit I hadn't taken a close look at every aspect of your deck, and I hadn't really picked up on your plan for retrieving dead Galepowder Mages. I wonder whether it may be a little slow a lot of the time though, as you probably won't be getting the benefit of the Mage's ability again until 2 turns later (recast it next turn, attack the turn after). Beseech the Queen or other tutor effects will likely have a similar problem.

Still, this is all theory and the best way to find out if the deck really works is to play it! With a limited set of opponents, no doubt you'll also identify some metagame-specific tweaks based on what types of decks they tend to play.
 
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