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 Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?

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Millaninja



Posts : 59
Join date : 2009-11-01

PostSubject: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 1:27 pm

Considering I am nothing but Win Fodder at the local FNM, I figured it was time to change that... I am considering attempting to build a U/B Mill/Control Deck, with Zombies and a few other cards... The main foundation would be from the Alara Unatural Schemes Deck, with mainly Lich Lord of Unx, Nemesis of Reason and Hedron Crab taking stage for Milling, as well as some good counters, and Sedraxis Alchemists to function as Unsummons. Here are the cards I'm thinking of using...

2x Lich Lord of Unx
2x Nemesis of Reason
4x Hedron Crab
3x Sedraxis Alchemist
2-3x Tidehallow Strix
2-3x Wall of Frost
2 Grixis Grimblade
1x Ob Nixilis
?Hypnotic Specter
2-3x Dredgescape Zombie
?Jace? if anyone has him?

4x Countersquall
2-4x Diabolic Tutor
3-4x Essence Scatter
2x Cancel
? Sign in Blood?
? Ior Fall Expedition

4x U/B Fetch Lands
4x Jwar Isle Refuge
4x Terramorphic Expanse
? Swamp
? Island

AAAAAAAND if anyone else has any other good Ideas for the deck, or if you have any of the cards I'm looking for, such as 3 Hedron Crab, the Fetch Lands, 2 Jwar Isle Refuge, or Jace, let me know! I might be willing to buy/trade for them!
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Kkrueg



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 2:56 pm

I totally have an esper mill decks right now i can think of some cards you might want to play if you're going for the whole mill aspect. Archive trap from zendikar would work pretty well seeing as how most every deck is playing fetches now and mind funeral is one that i think you should play either way.
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JakeFaas
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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 3:56 pm

Mind funeral actually is probably better now that fetches are in standard. One fetch = 2 lands from their deck. If you play a mind funeral late game, i could see it stretching to 10-plus cards. Archive trap is basically a must, and dipping into white for path to exile with archive trap would be a great idea, plus it pulls those lands out for the mind funeral. I'd say discard could also benefit this deck, duress and even brainbite to an extent. Architects of will could replace the dregscape zombies in my opinion. If you could stand to dip into the red side of things, cruel ultimatum would be a nice way to finish up the top of your curve, and give you access to great removal via terminate and lightning bolt. I think the format requires at least a third color splash when you do allied colored combinations right now. There are just too many things that can straight up shut out allied colors. Do you really want someone to land a great sable stag against you on turn three and you have no response to it?
I would say Tidehollow Strix is far superior to grixis grimblade. Play four of the bird and if you like the grimblade enough, you can play him as a 2 of. Remember he isn't gauranteed deathtouch, so investing in a 2/1 with no abilities for two colors isn't the best deal. If you want to include him, do yourself a favor and include wall of denial over your wall of frost. Sedraxis Alchemist, while a great limited card, suffers from the same problems that your grimblade does. These are not GUARANTEES. The creatures you use need to be good alone, if they are better with friends, great, but i wouldn't play a gray ogre or a coral merfolk in standard. I would say that Nemesis of reason should be pushed up to 3-4. This is going to be the most efficient way to mill your opponent, also it can't be burned out by red players, and even vamps will struggle to tendrils it away. Lich lord is decent, but he's inefficient if you plan to use him to mill. His buildup and pay off aren't the same. Playing lilianna in that spot might be something to consider, as your opponent will probably have some creatures in their graveyard. Sign in Blood is greater than Ior Ruin Expedition. You can burn or draw out your opponent with Sign in Blood, while Ior Ruin will be the last thing you want to see in topdeck mode. Using Hedron crab is iffy in standard. its a great mill effect, but it will never represent a formidable defense without some outside assistance. Sideboard might be the right place for the crab, in vs. control, since aggro definately has a hold on standard right now. Esper Charm should be in Diabolic Tutor's spot. It digs you into your deck at instant speed, while also having the option to clear out a hand or get rid of an Ascension. If you've got it at all, Day of Judgment and infest might be worth main deck spots at 2 and 4 (with 2 more Days Sideboarded). When you play this style of deck, you have to make sure you aren't dying. Its easy to goldfish wins, but you have to defend yourself from the aggro rushes. Right now i don't see ANY way to deal with a creature on the board. People will probably play a creature, and eventually one is going to land. What will you do if you don't have a counterspell up for baneslayer angel or you spent your last turn tapping out to play diabolic tutor. Instants are important, or at least cheap sorceries. I would try to build up a defense in my first few turns, then just sit back and control while they try and break through my defenses. Not much holds a candle to a wall of denial on third turn. At least not without throwing 3-4 cards at it.
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Millaninja



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PostSubject: interesting....   Mon Nov 02, 2009 4:23 pm

I suppose instead of Sedraxis Alchemist, I can just use Unsummons... and I'm sure I have at least one Archive Trap to use... I suppose if I had to add a 3rd color, I'd use Red, I have 3 Crumbling Necropoli, and a Dragonskull Summit so that I can use Lightning Bolt or Terminate. Dang... so much to consider.... otherwise I'm sure I have one more Nemesis.... oooh, I just realized... what if I added some different artifacts, like Whispersilk Cloaks for protection from Spot removal besides my Countersqualls?
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Be_Nike



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 4:50 pm

I think the main problem here is that the deck is out of focus. There are far too many creatures for a mill/control deck and the zombies really aren't going to keep up with the rest of the aggro decks that are currently being played. I think if you focus more on the mill/control part of the deck it will get a lot better.

With that said, I'll agree with Kurt and Jake and say that you should probably splash white. Path to Exile with Archive Trap is fantastic and Wall of Denial is far more capable of stalling the early game tan Wall of Frost. My advice would be to remove most of the smaller zombies. Strix isn't terrible and neither is Sculler, but they are both going to either get burnt the turn you play them or may take one block from a creature like Putrid Leech or Nighthawk and be on their merry way. With a mill/control deck you need some good mill and a few creatures that are hard to deal with and can finish up the game. Sphinx of Jwar Isle is a good compliment to Nemesis as a finisher and Jund has huge problems dealing with it. Instead of trying to figure out ways to make your creatures harder to kill with a terrible constructed card like Whispersilk Cloak, just play efficient creatures that are already hard to kill like the Sphinx who has shroud.

All in all, I think you need to play fewer, harder to kill creatures and more efficient mill and other spells like Mind Funeral, Esper Charm, Negate, some Essence Scatters, and maybe Haunting Echoes to compliment the rest of your mill. Focus more on what your deck is trying to do, and it will become a lot better.
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Yoman



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 5:01 pm

I looked up some mill decks and it seems that Howling Mine is commonly played and Esper is the way to go. If you do run Howling Mine you're going to need some protection, so use Angelsong. I definitely agree with Path + Archive trap for forcing your opponent to make a hard decision. You will also need Day of Judgment. There is a lot of aggro in the meta, so Essence Scatter main with Negate sideboard. Also twincast works for so many of your spells, not to mention for doing things against your opponent's spells. Here is a list I found that I slightly modified.

Creatures: x4
Wall of Denial x4

Instants: x17
Angelsong x4
Twincast x3
Essence Scatter x2
Path to Exile x4
Archive Trap x4

Sorceries: x8
Mind Funeral x4
Day of Judgment x4

Artifacts: x4
Howling Mine x4

Planeswalkers: x3
Jace Beleren x3

Mike, I think your problems at FNM come from lack of focus in one direction for your deck. If you want to do mill, then your entire deck needs to focus on milling your opponent. Parasitic Strix isn't going to help you mill, Grixis Grimblade isn't going to help you mill. When your deck has that focus, I believe you will find a lot more success.

Keeping it creatureless (mostly) may actually help you a lot as well. Any opponent you play with creature removal is going to have dead cards.

I hope you get some ideas from the cards listed above.

!@#$%^& Benike beat me to the "focus" advice
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JakeFaas
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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 5:11 pm

Be_Nike = Beneke? I never knew!
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Be_Nike



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 5:17 pm

Haha Jake...well now you know Very Happy I don't think that the mill deck needs to be creatureless, but closer to it. I think the creature list should be something like 4 Wall of Denial and 4 Sphinx of Jwar Isle. They're both really hard to get rid of and serve the purpose of stall for mill to come online and a fantastic finisher, respectively.
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JakeFaas
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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 5:20 pm

I think four sphinx will clog the deck up. 2 seems to be everyone's chosen amount and that makes the most sense to me. This would open up those other spots for some counter magic to the tune of punish ignorance. Even at 2 of, its a 4 mana 3 for 1.
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Yoman



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 5:36 pm

Unfortunately Vamps, which seems to be fairly commonly played, has an answer in Gatekeeper of Malakir for the entire creature base.
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Kkrueg



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 5:44 pm

What Jake and Mike have basically describe is my mill deck. Esper is definitely the way to go if your focus is going to be on milling your opponent. I find that it's really hard to play aggro mill deck because you have two different objectives, A) Aggro, taking your opponent to zero life or B) Mill, taking your opponent to zero cards in their library. These are two totally different objectives and you really do need to focus like mike said. Filling a deck with have of one win strategy and half of another ends up putting you in the middle of nowhere and not winning. If you want to play mill i suggest that you forget you opponent has a life total because you're never going to take them to zero any way. Wall of Denial, Path to Exile, Archive Trap, Day of Judgment, Sphinx of Jwar Isle, maybe Baneslayer, Mind Funeral, maybe Twin Cast targeting your traps or funerals, even paths. But the main thing you need to do is decide how you're going to win and make sure everycard you play is going to support that strategy.
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Be_Nike



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 7:18 pm

Gatekeeper is a problem...countermagic helps somewhat. I'm not sure what else to do about it...I think the deck needs something like Wall and Sphinx against the rest of the decks in the format. I'm still not sold on punish ignorance. I feel like this deck needs to stall into a DoJ on turn 4 and then it better mill in the next 1 or 2 turns or the aggro decks are going to beat it down.
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Ryman



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Mon Nov 02, 2009 7:41 pm

I def agree it should be Esper colored. Another thing I was thinking of is going defensive with possibly a couple Ranger of Eos to search up both Hedron Crab and possibly Kraken Hatchling. You can run things like Wall of denial with the Hatchling to help stop the bleeding until you can mill them out with your spells and/or crab. A singleton copy of Haunting Echoes and Traumatize could be cute as well, but their are most likely more efficient ways to mill in Mind Funeral, Nemesis of Reason, Hedron Crab, and Archeive Trap. Possibly some Trapmaker's Snare to help you search up the trap if you don't have one in hand. I'm also all about Twincasting the trap to really get full potential.
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JakeFaas
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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Tue Nov 03, 2009 8:29 pm

Inez wrote:
Unfortunately Vamps, which seems to be fairly commonly played, has an answer in Gatekeeper of Malakir for the entire creature base.

Its not necessarily a bad thing to have them use a gatekeeper to take out a third turn wall since you can fourth turn DOJ and be on your marry way without having to get rid of your own wall. One of my biggest pet peeves with the wall is that its so impossible to kill, that if you do end up needing to use DOJ, you're doing your opponent a favor, moreso if you have 2 walls out. Just because a card can be answered doesn't necessarily mean it should be dismissed. Every card has an answer, and at three black mana, they probably deserve to kill the wall.
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Kkrueg



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Tue Nov 03, 2009 10:22 pm

Jake has a great point. Vamps and maybe mono black control are going to be the only decks who run the gate keepers and even if they are being played against you i don't see them as a huge threat. Them spending three black mana to remove your creature gives you more time to set up your mill.
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Millaninja



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Tue Nov 03, 2009 11:11 pm

Some very good points here... Yea, I think in Hindsight that an Esper Mill Deck is the way to go, so if you guys can help me out with the Walls, the Traps, Mind Funerals, ETC, I should be able to put this together pretty quick...
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Kkrueg



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Wed Nov 04, 2009 12:04 am

post the things you need in the trading post, andrew and i might have a spare archive trap, will you be at magic on friday?
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Millaninja



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PostSubject: Re: Help with U/B Mill Control... any suggestions?   Wed Nov 04, 2009 11:55 am

As far as I know, I plan on it, I know that Dan was gonna help me with a few cards as well, like if I wanted to put Hedron Crabs in... But yea, I'll post on the Trade Board for the cards I'll need. Thanks again for the help, guys!
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