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Ertai’s Trickery: Mad Machinist’s Mash-Up (Part 6 of 6)

And so it’s come to this. A week of pooling and cutting, arranging and tinkering, and all the labour to be decided on a mere three games with Sam. Those who’ve read from the beginning have experienced our colour selection, choice of removal, card advantage and Land options, Creatures, and final assembly of the deck.

When we began this project, it was to take the cards of three Artifact-focused preconstructed decks (Planechase’s Metallic Dreams, Archenemy’s Assemble the Doomsday Machine, and Duel Decks: Elspeth vs Tezzeret’s Tezzeret) and combine them into one 60-card hybrid with which to take the field against Elspeth’s deck. When we analysed and playtested Elspeth’s deck, we found it strong in the early game with a decent removal suite, so a slower Artifact theme had its work cut our for it.

At the eleventh hour,  based on advice from readership I stripped out a Swamp and added a Mistvein Borderpost, which I had previously cut from consideration, to bolster the mana base of the deck.

Sam and I took them to battle, and here are our notes.

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Ertai’s Trickery: The Mad Machinist’s Mash-Up (Part 5 of 6)

At last we are ready to assemble the Mad Machinist’s Mash-up! Over the past week, we’ve taken the cards from three different Artifact-based precons (Planechase’s Metallic Dreams, Archenemy’s Assemble the Doomsday Machine, and Duel Decks: Elsepth vs Tezzeret’s Tezzeret deck), and pared away cards in search of making a cohesive whole.

As we said in the beginning, we won’t always make the same choices that you might, and we’re certainly not against being wrong on occasion, but the end result should be a deck that blends the strengths of all three, capable of holding its own even moreso against Elspeth’s deck in the Duel Decks. In our next (and last) installment of this Trickery, we’ll be taking the Mash-Up to battle against her mono-White deck. So let’s go deckbuilding!

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Ertai’s Trickery: The Mad Machinist’s Mash-Up (part 4 of 6)

Once again we return to the lair of the Mad Machinist, and continue our Frankensten-like work on a hybrid deck combining the best elements of three different preconstructed decks! In the past three episodes of Ertai’s Trickery, we’re looking to build a powerhouse Artifact deck out of the 180 cards afforded us by Planechase’s Metallic Dreams, Archenemy’s Assemble the Doomsday Machine and the Tezzeret deck from Duel Decks: Elspeth vs Tezzeret.

In earlier articles, we’ve narrowed the colour scheme down to Blue/Black, and have made early rounds of cuts on our removal, and selected cards that would give us a steady dose of card advantage.

By the end of today’s column, we’ll have our second round of cuts comeplete, and ready to start deckbuilding! All that remains are critters, counters, and miscellany, and we’ll hit them all today!

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Ertai’s Trickery: The Mad Machinist’s Mash-Up (Part 3 of 6)

Welcome back to the next installment of our latest series, Ertai’s Trickery! Our goal is simple: make a solid 60-card deck out of a very limited card pool: Planechase’s Metallic Dreams, Archenemy’s Assemble the Doomsday Machine and Tezzeret’s deck from Duel Decks: Elspeth vs Tezzeret. In past episodes we settled on a colour scheme and began to look at removal. Next, we’ll be looking at ways to get the most out of the 60 cards we settle on.

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Ertai’s Trickery: the Mad Machinist’s Mash-Up (Part 2 of 6)

Welcome back to the next installment of Ertai’s Trickery! We’re back in the machine shop, exploring the considerable number of trinkets and artifacts we’ve salvaged from Metallic Dreams, Assemble the Doomsday Machine, and Tezzeret with an eye to assembling the most powerful, most lethal, and most foe-crushing collection of 60 cards we can, before leading them to bloody retribution against that most nettlesome, meddling Planeswalker, Elspeth! Muahahaha!!!


Sorry, got carried away there  for a moment. Anyway, in our last installment we made all the easy, colour-based cuts. Since the Mad Machinist’s Mash-Up is going to be Blue/Black, we’re now down to only those cards that will work within that framework, but we still have way too many for a deck. It’s time for the next round of cuts, and some difficult decisions.

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Ertai’s Trickery: The Mad Machinist’s Mash-Up (Part 1 of 6)

Today we’re excited to introduce a new occasional series to the website: Ertai’s Trickery! Whereas the Meddling series follows very specific rules with an eye to refining an existing deck within its own framework, Ertai’s Trickery throws such stodgy methodolgy to the wind. No, what you’ll find here is the offbeat, the oddball and the extraordinary, and we’ll be beginning today with the start of a mash-up deck.

The genesis for this feature came from one of our readers, Jars, who had this to say:

One suggestion that you might want to try in the near future: since you already have all these Wizards-made decks (Intro Packs, Duel Decks, etc), what say you to doing a mash-up of sorts? I mean, use cards from another precon to tweak and improve this deck. For example, use the “Assemble the Doomsday Machine” Archenemy deck or “Metallic Dreams” Planechase deck to give the Tezzeret deck a boost. I know that you have specified your procedure of editing decklists (e.g., no adding rares) but this might be a good thing to try.

The more we thought about it, the more fun the idea sounded. But then we thought, “hey, why limit ourselves to just two? Since we have all three of those solidly Artifact-based decks in our library, let’s see if we can’t come up with something truly wicked. So Planechase’s Metallic Dreams, Archenemy’s Assemble the Doomsday Machine, and Duel Decks: Elspeth vs Tezzeret’s Tezzeret deck came down off the shelf and were dumped into one large pile.

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New Year’s Day State of the Site Address

Welcome to 2011!

At the start of a new year, it’s always useful to take a moment and reflect upon the one that’s passed, and having missed our site’s six-month anniversary, I thought it fitting to do so here.

First of all, a huge thanks to all the members of the Precon Community who have made Ertai’s Lament as successful as it’s been. We really didn’t know what we were getting into when we put up our first post on 03 June, but since that time we’ve gone from a few-hits-a-week site to one that averages somewhere between 500-1000 a day. It was great to see so many folks out there have the same interest and passion as us! Certainly, we could not have done it without all the thoughtful feedback we’ve recieved from all of you.

On that note, here are a few things on our minds as we enter 2011.

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Scars of Mirrodin: Myr of Mirrodin Review (Part 1 of 2)

Welcome to Scars of Mirrodin! 

The newest block is upon us, and leading the way are the five new Intro Pack decks showcasing the themes and elements of the set. Indeed, acting as a illustration to the concepts and designs of a given set are one of the things that these decks do best, and all early indications are that the Scars block has raised the bar in relation to past releases. Today we begin our block of reviews with the mono-White Myr of Mirrodin deck, which in keeping with recent convention gets to carry the banner of Scars’ Tribal deck.

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