Sunday, 17 January 2016

Balancing Tings

“Accidents can be fun.” – no parent, ever. I stumbled upon today’s deck while looking into another archetype that had been requested. While I decided to write about this one today, fear not! It does not mean I won’t ever write about the other. Occasionally it can be hard to figure out which deck I want to write about, but hey, that’s what life is about sometimes: Balancing Tings.

The land base. There are actually a couple of options here, despite the lands’ relatively unique sac-style of play. The most common approach (and the one I stuck with), is the use of the Invasion-cycle that create 2 colours of mana when sacrificed. While I do understand the appeal of the Odyssey-cycle lands in a 5-colour deck without fetch lands, I just do not think the lack of ramp is worth it. 24 sac lands might seem a bit light to you, in which case these can make a great addition to the deck if you want. I obviously went with Wasteland, which has its pros and cons in the comparison.

The win conditions in the deck are pretty few and far between, which is why some of them have built-in protection. While Anurid Brushhoper and Nimble Mongoose are both excellent at staying alive, I find their clock can be a bit slow at times. Because of this, I focused more on the Terravore game plan, which can beat down for the win very quickly. If it’s not already clear, the idea is to play Balancing Act while floating enough mana to cast a Terravore, Brushhopper or Mongoose. The sideboard also includes an Insidious Dreams, which can be used to find a threat if you don’t have one already, while maximizing Balancing Act on your opponent’s hand.

Strategy. One of the best pieces of advice that I found with regards to playing Tings is that you need to focus on your land management. You want to make sure that the colour(s) of mana that you are going to need during your key turns are available. The deck has a strong game against aggro, but can struggle against control and combo. I tweaked the deck to have a better game against both, with cards such as Duress and Overmaster in the sideboard.

Most of the decks that I saw contained 1 or 2 copies of Obliterate to combat control. I decided to omit it however, because a) I included other options and b) I believe it to be too slow for the Ancient format. The deck was designed for Extended after all, while we are playing against an entirely different kind of monster. I could also see a combination of Wish cards and Lion’s Eye Diamonds to be a strong possibility in the deck. Happy Brewing!

Balancing Tings


4 Archaeological Dig
4 Ancient Spring
4 Geothermal Crevice
4 Irrigation Ditch
4 Sulfur Vent
4 Tinder Farm
4 Wasteland

Total: 28


3 Anurid Brushhopper
4 Terravore
1 Nimble Mongoose

Total: 8


4 Balancing Act
4 Chromatic Sphere
4 Orim’s Chant
4 Lotus Petal
4 Moment’s Peace/Peace Talks
3 Fire // Ice
1 Pyroclasm

Total: 24


4 Overmaster
4 Duress
2 Disenchant
1 Abeyance
1 Hull Breach
2 Ivory Mask
1 Insidious Dreams

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