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Running the Gauntlet: Tezzeret, Day 2 (UW Stoneforge)

Welcome to Day 2 of Tezzeret’s trial by fire, where I get to battle against UW Stoneforge. Day 1 was against Boros, and can be found here.

For reference, the Tezzeret list I am using is the following:

 

To see the rest of this deck’s matchups, as well as the current Running the Gauntlet series, click here!

Day 2: UW, piloted by Owen Turtenwald

This was one of the matchups I was most worried about. In test games before the Pro Tour, UW seemed pretty favored against Tezzeret, mainly because of the counterspells. While Tezzeret does have Inquisition, UW has more Spell Pierces and Mana Leaks, as well as a cheaper clock overall. On the other hand, UW has no way to easily kill a resolved Tezzeret, especially if there is a Tumble Magnet in play. The UW lists have started cutting counters, which does give Tezzeret an edge, but even if they are running 5-6 instead of 8-9, it feels hard to resolve Planeswalkers.

Preboard Games

I managed to go 3-0(wen) in preboard games, which was a pleasant surprise. Granted, I had multiple starts where I went t1 Inquisition t3 Tezzeret, but hey, that’s what the deck is supposed to do! This matchup really showcased the power of Tumble Magnet, as it often bought me enough time to win with Planeswalkers, since it nullified Sword all by itself. If I had Tumble Magnets out without a Planeswalker, they only made me lose slower, but with 8 Planeswalkers that wasn’t much of a problems in the games we played. Sadly, it didn’t feel like improved as much as he did postboard.

Sideboard:

In

 

Out

 

At first, I waffled between Disfigure and Go for the Throat, but after getting Gideoned a few times I decided on GfT.

Postboard Games

My record after board was 2-4, which didn’t surprise me. I may have won two of the actual matches, but again it felt like my draws were really good in many of the games. It is useful to know that the Tezz nut draw beats the Stoneforge nut draw, since that definitely came up, but after reviewing the games we played, my draws were really above par. He got to add Divine Offering and Oust, which while not insane, definitely gave him more answers to Forgemaster.

Thoughts on the Matchup

I won two of the matches, and the game count was 5-4 overall, which isn’t terrible or great. To be honest, I thought it would be a lot worse, and I’m happy to break about even. Their biggest weakness is that they can’t kill a Tezzeret, and every time I got out an early Tezz + Tumble Magnet, I won (very easily). So, what can we do to make it more likely that Tezzeret resolves? If they don’t have an early Hawk or Mystic, you can play around Mana Leak and Spell Pierce with your mana artifacts, so the long game is one option, and Inquisition’ing their countermagic is another. A card that fits perfectly into both plans is none other than Mana Leak. It can stop Hawk or Mystic if Tezzeret is on the play, and it makes it so they can’t just tap out for Jace on turn four. I think it would shore up most of the holes in the matchup, mainly the problem of you not being able to tap out for a ‘Walker and them having free reign to do so.

I didn’t even want any really matchup-specific cards, since it wasn’t that lopsided. Mana Leak would do just fine.

Cards I wanted against UW

Uh, Mana Leak?

Possible Cuts

Ratchet Bomb (seriously, get this thing out of here)

This seemed like the worst matchup going in, and after battling, I was optimistic. Yes, my draws were good, and yes, they have counters and we don’t, but that is easily fixable, leaving the matchup pretty decent.

Tomorrow I battle against RUG, which is always a solid choice!

LSV

53 thoughts on “Running the Gauntlet: Tezzeret, Day 2 (UW Stoneforge)”

  1. With the possible cuts section, is that from the deck as a whole or just this matchup? I really enjoy the Tezz/Forgemaster deck and I often hope that I don’t draw Rachet Bomb when I’m not looking at a field full of goblin tokens, so I wasn’t sure whether the dislike was as high for others as it is myself. I understand where it should be good, but most of the time I’ve found myself in matches where I simply need to get there before the other guy does, and Rachet Bomb doesn’t seem to help as much as any of the other artifacts do.

  2. Pause the match and pet your cats. They don’t understand why you love the glowing square more than them.

  3. Really loved the games. LSV commentary side was a lot better though. 😉

    Only thing I felt about the sideboarding was that the Black Suns Zenith would be really good agaist Caw-go. Even having a 3rd one rather than rachet bomb in the sideboard. Only watched the matches once but it felt like that the games you lost were where he got a huge board presence with multiple creatures.

  4. I just wanna express how much I love these videos. I’m not watching how it’s played from the other side, though I understand how it’s relevant in terms of learning, but I just love watching you play, LSV. It reminds me of watching PV when we used to go to the same tournaments, just extremely tight gameplay.

  5. Since they have Oust and Jace, does it make sense to trim a Blightsteel Colossus to let you keep more accel? They have to kill Forgemasters on sight anyway, and that’s the only target you can’t really hardcast.

  6. m3g1 after you resolve the tumble magnet why don’t you just put him on dead with a 5/5 inkmoth?

  7. Hi Sweet movies!

    In Match 2 Game 3, I see that you pretty mch ad the game.
    But if you had played the Battlesphere you could have -4 tezz and drained for something like 26.

  8. Hey . First thanks for the great series.
    But especially in this series:. It’s kind of annoying if the matches are decided by bad plays.
    For exaple Match 1 Game 1, if the hawk doesn’t trade with the Nexus. The game would be much harder.

  9. Game 2 question.

    When you took otis’ turn with Mindslaver, could you have activated Gideon, bounced him with Jace, re-cast Gideon and then spell pierced and declined to pay 2?

  10. great games, really enjoyed them, etc.

    @luis m1g2, when you mindslaver’d him what do you think about making gideon a guy, bouncing it with jace, then replaying it, and for you to spell pierce it, and not paying for it? ya it doesn’t get any hawks off the board but it solves the gideon problem

  11. M1 G2 when you mindslavered him, I know it probably still wouldnt have mattered, but why didnt you tap his colonnade to activate it, then gideon it. That might have given you one more turn.

  12. Ratchet Bomb doesn’t seem that bad against a mono 2-drop deck, although it may be too slow and it’s easier for them to play around than the Zenith.

    Why not side out the Forgemasters in this matchup? It seems like with Jace, Oust, and Divine Offering, they’re almost actively bad even if you have them. Granted, Tezzeret gets worse if you side into a UB control deck, but there should still be enough artifacts for him to be at least marginally useful.

  13. great series, awful deck. at one point you ask why you dont draw any action spells, the answer is the deck does not have. all thec ards like spheres, magnet etc.. is juts blanks if you dont have tezzeret.

  14. great series, indeed and yeah, i also dislike this deck a lot.
    but its awesome you give it a chance LSV. Hope you enjoy theses matches as much as I do =)

  15. I love this series.

    Post board, it seems like a bunch of artifacts come out for spells and Tezz becomes actively worse, as shown in M1G2 when Tezz is drawn, LSV has played 2 SB cards and has no artifacts in play to kill Jace with. Just something to think about, but I’d say the SB needs more artifact answers – Phyrexian Revoker possibly to run interference with Jace or Swords?

  16. Man, like mike and chard said, it would’ve been sweet if you bounced gideon with jace and then spell pierced him. I was trying to will you to do that, but I guess it had already happened. 🙂

  17. Oh, and also: Since UW just seems to lose when you go turn 3 planeswalker, it feels right to just not tap out and fake the counter in some games. Like Match 3 Game 1, you have this situation where Owen plays the Mystic turn 2 and just loses to Tezzeret, while saying that he has basically no good plays after you slam the planeswalker next turn. Maybe it’s still right to just go for it in this spot, i think it is a very interesting decision though.

  18. Ill add my voice in saying that this is a great series. Standard (or constructed for that matter) content is a great addition from you guys lately.

    The fact that you choose a deck I want to start playing has nothing to do with my opinion, really!

    Also, I think you might have missed an option in M3G2. Last turn before he concedes (so this might be irrelevant), you could have used the magnet to tap his last blocker end of turn, untap, ultimate Tezzeret for 10 points of damage, play your other Tezzeret, make a 5/5 and kill him. I think its just faster and it shows that the ultimate while rarely what you want to go for is always a backup option, and a dangerous one.

  19. I agree with abdallah, this deck has four win conditions in total. Which is ok since it’s a control deck but it seems a tad little when there are relatively few “control” cards in the deck. Also I’m not a huge fan of control mirrors but that’s more of a matter of tastes.

  20. game 2 vs uw, you should have animated gideon, bounced it with jace, cast gideon then pierce it, bro =D

  21. Love the videos. Is there any chance you will be done the series by Friday? I really am excited to play this deck again and I would like to try some of your changes because when I ran the deck last week I felt it was missing something but I wasn’t sure what. Now that I listen to your videos I definitely feel mana leaks could be helpful.

  22. @Grumbler: I think you’re talking about M3G1, but yeah I saw that too. You don’t even need to tap your Magnet at his EoT. Since he’s only got one guy, you can tap one of the magnets and animate the other. Either way you’ve got enough mana to play around Spell Pierce, Inquisition is just icing on the cake.

  23. Seems the Caw is a more stable deck over all, but Tezz has the larger threats. Your plays when you drew good (or rather, quite normal, since I’ve played the deck myself) had a much bigger impact on the board than did his.

  24. Luis Scott-Vargas

    @ Tom

    Yup, Thursday night I’ll post the final installment, with one a day until then.

  25. The deck really needs Tezz 5-8. It needs actual card advantage through drawing in order to have enough stuff to get there. Playing against aggro you goldfish the combo, tumble magnet for advantage, but most games you attrition and it is planeswalker or no. The complete lack of ability to compete without a ‘walker is what holds this deck back.

    RUG sounds interesting tomorrow. I predict a blowout in favour of RUG.

  26. LOL with the divine offering—gruesome encore. Cant stop laughing after the gruesome story from the other day.

  27. @ Vegeta: Yes, besides 4 Tezz, 4 Jace, 4 Kuldotha Forgemasters, 1 Battlesphere, and 1 Mindslayer, it is terribly short on win conditions.

  28. Further thoughts:

    I think Owen overvalued Day of Judgment in M1G1. If he’d discarded a DoJ instead of a Gideon he probably would’ve won. Spot removal or bounce seems way better in the matchup than the wrath, what with Stoneforge and Squadron Hawk being such a large part of the plan.

    M1G3, why not kill Tezz with Celestial Colonnade? You give him the opportunity to activate Forgemaster, but that won’t be the worst unless he gets Blightsteel, and even then he needs a second artifact to go with Sphere. Granted Blightsteel is probably the right call from LSV’s point of view, but if he misses for even one turn then you can wrath away his Forgemaster.

  29. Nice!

    It really does seem like when playing UW, you want to get a tezz out quickly or you’re pretty screwed, which makes the matchup very draw dependent.

  30. Luis Scott-Vargas

    @ MO

    Taking a line of play that causes Owen to lose to any artifact seems poor, especially if you are somehow assuming I might NOT get blightsteel for the instant win.

  31. Am I the only one that watched both sides? Owens commentary is hilarious. Thanks for the videos both of you.

  32. I’m not sure, but it seems to me that the UW deck is actually the underdog in this match. Tezz has a bunch of must-stop threats, while UW’s must-stop threats seem to consist of Jace, occasionally Gideon, and maybe a Sworded guy (which Tumble Magnet, removal, and random 5/5s handle easily). Even their answers are much worse: Wrath was so often a dead card, and Divine Offering, while a reasonable answer to Forgemaster or Tumble Magnet, doesn’t help much against Tezz, which is what really causes the UW deck fits.

    Actually, I think the card I like least in the Tezz deck is Sphere of the Suns. I get that a turn three ‘walker is good, and I get that having extra mana helps play around random counterspells, but I’m not convinced it does enough. I’d be tempted to try Contagion Clasp, since as removal it’s probably better against aggro (turn 3 ‘walker probably just dies), it keeps your Tumble Magnets active indefinitely, ramps your Everflowing Chalices, and can even contribute to the poison-them-out Plan B.

  33. I definitely would counter the tumble magnet in the first game if I were Caw Blade. The Tumble Magnet is the most annoying card for the man who carries the sword. Mr. Owen instead of brainstorming with his first Jace game 1, he should better fateseal Mr. Vargas until he’s completely dead.. well anyways it’s easy to talk outside of the match, maybe while doing the commentary, Mr. Owen got confused in his line of play.

  34. Thumbs up to LSV and this video series, free video content that is SOOOO good, people should pay for!

  35. match one game 2
    when u mind slavered him
    u can activate collinade using it to make the mana. then assassinate it with Gideon.
    still in rough shape, but not 100% dead.

  36. I might be wrong, but I think you might want to add some Mana Leak’s in there. 😉
    Loving the vids considering I’ve been playing Tezz since it came out, can’t wait to see the list you settle on in the end.

  37. this installment was, in the words of matt nass, very interesting. This is an excellent series. Go, LSV!

  38. game 2 against u/w when u slaverd him you should of animated his giddeon and bounced it with jace.think u where dead anyways. Good Vids

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