All posts by IAMZERG

Cards to Watch: Jace’s Phantasm

Spoiler season for Magic 2013 came very quickly on the heels of the Avacyn Restored release on MTGO and there is already a card that stands out.  Jace’s Phantasm seems like it should be fake.  In power level terms, Wizards has put far worse cards in the rare slot before.  Jace’s Phantasm is a 1/1 flier for a blue mana out of the gate.  When an opponent has 10 or more cards in his or her graveyard, it suddenly turns into a 5/5 flier.  Few cards I have ever seen got me as excited as I am over this card, assuming it is real.  The reason it gets me excited?

It makes an excellent tool for Delver players.  It is an enormous body for a minimal cost.  I can’t imagine Delver players passing this up, unless the meta just doesn’t favor it.  U/B control can be a pain since it can interact very well at all stages of the game with Delver’s plan.  If it continues to be a contender, Delver will need to look to other tools.  Most lists have token generation, giving them an edge in the matchup as opposed to a build like mine, which relies primarily on Invisible Stalker, and has a lot of trouble after a resolved Liliana of the Veil or Curse of Death’s Hold.

Access the complete Magic 2013 Spoiler at MTGSalvation.com.

Avacyn Restored Release on MTGO was Sunday?!

I completely missed the Avacyn Restored release apparently… I have been busy with Diablo III and trying to find a job.  I’ve had a lot more luck with Diablo III… Finished Hell difficulty the other night.  Inferno is… bonkers.  An entirely different ballgame.

Anyways, I’ve re-assessed things a bit, and I might be continuing with the Mono-Blue Delver project.  Delver is not a terrible deck right now, and I really like my chances against decks playing Wolfir Silverhearts.  The deck will still need some tuning.  4 Invisible Stalkers and 4 Runechanter’s Pike seem correct, even in the face of cards like Curse of Death’s Hold and Black Sun’s Zenith.  I’d like more answers to it than just Grand Architect and the already stretched thin Mana Leak, but the metagame may dictate that little more is warranted.  I toyed with the idea of using Spectral Flight instead of Runechanter’s Pike so my Invisible Stalkers get the benefit from Favorable Winds, but that seems incorrect… Too much has to happen for that interaction to be useful and it doesn’t have the raw power available in Runechanter’s Pike.  I’m still undecided on what I should add to finish out a long game.  Mill may be the way to go about it since it doesn’t involve attacking at all.  Increasing Confusion is an interesting card for this purpose.  Most of the time, it will make an equipped Runechanter’s Pike threaten lethal immediately, but it can polish off opponents almost on its own given enough time.  To couple with it, a card that made me giggle at how bad it seemed when I saw it in the Innistrad spoiler: Dream Twist.

I agree that mill is not the most effective possible way to win a game of Magic.  However, further enabling my primary route to victory while allowing for an alternate route in case the game goes late is something I want this deck to be capable of.  For this type of list, I will be moving back up to 23 lands and probably going for a slightly more controlling build.  That means Dissipate will probably make it back in.  Milling myself also makes my Snapcaster Mages all that much better.  Consider this slightly improbable scenario:  I finished my sixth turn and I was fortunate enough to have hit every land drop thus far (yeah.. probably not a good idea to keep 5-land hands, but with Runechanter’s Pike and Invisible Stalker?… tough call, at least in my opinion).  Unfortunately, my opponent is attempting to resolve a Curse of Death’s Hold and I have no way of dealing with it at the moment and he knows it (Gitaxian Probe).  I do, however, have Dream Twist in hand along with a Snapcaster Mage.  I cast Dream Twist, manage to find a Mana Leak, cast it off of Snapcaster, and my equipped Invisible Stalker lives.

Oh, and if you decide to use something similar to the deck I’ve described, I’d like to know what kind of results you had if you don’t mind.

Deck Review: Birthing Pod

Was going through my list of articles and realized this one never got posted.  It’s outdated and short, but its points are still pretty valid.

Podding has not produced as many sound results as anticipated.  The deck, despite its sound strategy of pouring a steady stream of threats onto the battlefield, is difficult to pilot perfectly. 

In addition, the deck fails to attack the opponent on multiple levels.  Two good examples of attacking the opponent on multiple levels can be found in two of the top tier decks: Wolf Run can win through Titan and friends attacks as well as Inkmoth Nexus, and Red Deck Wins has Shrine of Burning Rage.  While Shrine of Burning Rage isn’t exactly a different level, it allows the red deck to play a different game than the opponent is.  For every red spell cast and every turn that passes, the shrine can do an additional point of damage, forcing the opponent to play as though he had much less life than  he actually does.

Consistency issues are the final nails in the coffin.  The deck can’t count on having a Pod every game, and when it doesn’t, it plays out as an inferior ramp deck. 

A U/W Control Homebrew for the New Standard

The format is moving away from tempo-based decks, at least as far as I can tell.  I will continue to tune the Delver list, as it may end up being necessary at the start of the Avacyn Restored release on MTGO.  Control variants and midrange decks are the dominant forces in the format.  My next deck attempt is going to be a U/W homebrew.  I want a no-frills deck that can win through card advantage.  I will be loosely patterning the deck off of Dave Shield’s U/B Control deck that he received second place with in Grand Prix: Baltimore this year.  You can view his decklist, other competitors’ decklists, and enjoy the event coverage here.  The deck’s choice of game-enders is mill (through Nephalia Drownyard) and Consecrated Sphinx beats.  The deck effectively runs 6 board sweepers, none of which can be recast through Snapcaster.  Three Forbidden Alchemy, four Think Twice, and a single Blue Sun’s Zenith represent the card draw suite (excluding Consecrated Sphinx of course). 

I want to lean a little harder on Snapcaster than Dave’s deck did.  His deck has the advantage of being able to wipe out a horde of X/1 tokens for 2 mana via Black Sun’s Zenith.  The only downside to Black Sun’s Zenith is that it cannot get rid of Undying creatures effectively.  The -1/-1 tokens reset it so that it comes back every time.

Well, enough of the comparison game.  I need to have a working list.  Starting with the obvious 4-of’s:

Day of Judgment
Snapcaster Mage
Think Twice
Mana Leak

Dave’s deck features a strong spot removal suite.  Oblivion Ring should be fine here, along with a couple Midnight Haunting.  Now, on to the finishers.  The blue and white Miracle cards may have a place in my removal suite, but that will be to contemplate later. This may end up being an inferior U/W miracle deck, but time will tell.

Runechanter’s Pike will be pretty large for this deck.  I think it will serve me well as a finisher on a spirit token… but the deck needs some resilience.  For backup in the finisher department, I have a lot of options.  The budget option would be Chancellor of the Annex or Sunblast Angel.  I really like the idea of Sun Titan, however.  It allows me to accelerate if I need to get ahead on mana, or simply return important permanents such as Oblivion Ring, Runechanter’s Pike, or Ghost Quarter.  Its power to converted mana cost ratio is better than the other finishers’ as well.

For the card drawing suite, I am going greedy by playing 3 Divination as opposed to the Forbidden Alchemy in Dave’s list since I’m not sure how I would hard-cast the flashback on it.  Ok… I think that’s a list.

4 Snapcaster Mage
Chancellor of the Annex

1 Blue Sun’s Zenith
Day of Judgment
Dissipate
Divination
Mana Leak
Midnight Haunting
Think Twice

Oblivion Ring

Ratchet Bomb
Runechanter’s Pike

Ghost Quarter
Glacial Fortress
10 Island
12 Plains

This is where I’m starting anyway.  Oooo… I didn’t mention the Ratchet Bomb.  It’s an out to Entreat the Angels and other decks with the “randomly win with creature tokens” game plan.  Not sure what things will look like post-board in the mirror.  Hopefully, that won’t be a problem.  Let me know what you think.  Sideboard plans?

Was working up a follow-up article to this and realized the original never got posted.  Oh well.  It’s here now.  Enjoy.

Nixed Sixth Edition… 6.1th Edition anyone?

Sixth edition got nixed before it made it to a Standard queue.  My balance of creatures and spells is off.  Also, my abysmal matchup against Wolf Run and similar decks leads me to reconsider some things.  A budget Spirit Delver list I found here revealed some major flaws in my deck.  An inability to deal with creatures effectively, as well as an inability to push through damage outside of a Runechanter’s Pike does not allow this deck to succeed.  The other deck features Fiend Hunters and Oblivion Rings as solutions to problematic permanents.  The deck also features 20 instants and sorceries to help flip Delver, while my sixth edition mono-blue delver list only has 17.  Drogskol Captains protect the other Spirits in the deck and also pump them.  They are also pumped by Honor of the Pure.  I feel the two decks have very different paths to victory, and the path to victory my version uses is fairly narrow and less resilient than the Spirit Delver list.  Token generation provides a very rapid recovery after a board sweep, whereas my deck leans on countermagic to answer a board sweeper.  With that said, I now must decide if I want to further protect the threats I present, or move to a more resilient plan.  Given the evidence presented in that forum, a more resilient plan seems to be the correct answer.  I have really liked Invisible Stalker, but in thinking things through, I can’t remember very many occasions where it was actually better than any other evasive creature.  I’d love to turn off removal spells altogether with hexproof and deal with sweepers using countermagic, but I can sacrifice a few counterspells for ways of dealing with difficult creatures after they have hit the table, and I really like that possibility.  Niblis of the Breath gets me pretty excited.  However, the creature’s toughness makes me depressed.  With a Grand Architect in play, it’s a little less scary.  Yes, I’m moving back to that plan again.  This time, I think I am wise to the mistakes I made, so.. hopefully this won’t end in another failed list.  There’s a blue uncommon that pumps fliers.  I think it fits the bill nicely here.  A lack of token generators is a problem here, however, and is where the list stalls out a bit.  I think we can cheat by with two routes to victory here, however.  Dropping down on the countermagic suite and revising the creature list a bit should help.  Snapcaster Mage doesn’t get into the red zone very frequently, so four seems like the wrong number.  I really need evasive, aggressive creatures.  Dungeon Geists really isn’t what I want either in spite of how good it is.  4 for a creature is a bit much.  Early pressure and cards that stall an opponent’s threats are things I need more.  I’ve revamped my spells to add to my ability to stall out creatures.  Though I’m still worried about allowing Titans to return to play over and over, I think my spell selection will help significantly in giving me that added bit of reach I need toward the end of a game.  I’m afraid to post a list because I fear the deck will be revised again before it makes its way into a standard queue, particularly since you don’t see Niblis of the Breath at the top tables.

Mono-blue Delver: Sixth Edition

I have been unhappy with the build I have been experimenting with.  Dropping down to 20 lands hurts as it really cuts down on my options.  An interesting game I had with a build I’m very dissatisfied with almost makes pursuing the concept of a 20-land delver list worth the effort:

Increasing the potential for craziness and dumb luck is always nice, but I am unsure where to take the deck.  I want a list that I don’t have to worry too much about hitting land drops in, as that has been quite an issue in the several games I have with the build featured in the video above (could simply be variance).  The mana cost of the spells is another factor.  Forbidden Alchemy is one of my favorite cards in the earlier builds of this deck, but I fear not being able to cast it when needed if only using 20 lands.  Moving to 21 or 22 lands might be correct.  Mana cost wise, it is less efficient than Thought Scour… but having selection over what you draw and pitch is worth it more often than not.  There are enough Delver decks in the format at the moment to prey on, so it may be correct to just hope for the best against Frites and other decks that ‘go big’ in a hurry.  Nonetheless, I’d like to have a puncher’s chance against Frites and Wolf Run Ramp.  That is why I am upping the Dissipate count to 3.  Erring towards being more reactive may be incorrect, but even in the most aggressive builds I have played with, Frites has a pretty good shot of casting Unburial Rites on Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobyte before I can kill them.  Elesh Norn is nigh impossible to come back from.  I’ve survived Gideon Jura, Day of Judgment and other difficult-to-deal with shenanigans, but Elesh Norn takes the cake.  A few Surgical Extraction  or a couple Phantasmal Image would put Frites on its back heels, but $10 each is more than I am willing to pay.

An article on Wizards’ website used Grand Architect in their budget Delver deck, but Grand Architect has underperformed for me.  Granted, the deck on the site had more artifacts than my list does.  I like the card, but I would prefer something else in that slot for my list.  2 Dungeon Geists may be where it’s at, along with a fourth Forbidden Alchemy.  Dungeon Geists has performed very well for me against the decks that go big in a hurry.  He also helps to nullify the effects of Elesh Norn until I can bounce and counter him.

I decided to get a few Butcher’s Cleavers for the sideboard in case mono-red decides to be a pain.

Here’s the list I’m thinking about putting through a Standard queue on MTGO:

4 Delver of Secrets
2 Dungeon Geists
4 Invisible Stalker
4 Snapcaster Mage

3 Dissipate
4 Forbidden Alchemy
4 Mana Leak
4 Ponder
2 Thought Scour
4 Vapor Snag

Runechanter’s Pike

Buried Ruin
19 Island

Sideboard:

Disperse
Dissipate
Negate
3 Butcher’s Cleaver
Nihil Spellbomb
Ratchet Bomb

I’ll try and remember to record everything so you have an accurate idea about how this deck ends up performing.

Avacyn Restored–Cards I’m Excited About

I must say one of my favorites in the entire set so far is Vessel of Endless Rest.  Frites has been giving me fits.  I virtually can’t beat it with Delver.  There isn’t even a point in posting the videos… they were a complete massacre.  Vessel of Endless Rest is a very attractive solution to the menacing deck.  Thwarting all their hard work with a single card that accelerates me as well is pretty sweet.  Sadly, there is little Delver can do with extra mana laying around.  I am therefore tempted to move away from a hard-nosed, aggressive build.  I will not let go of it without a fight, though.  Dropping my land count to 20 and taking a second look at my spell suite will probably be my last attempt at a viable mono-blue Delver list until Magic rotates online.  If that fails, I will look to move to a more controlling, late-game deck that relies on Delvers for early pressure in the matchups where it proves useful.

I promised myself I wouldn’t rabbit trail in this article and look what I did…  Moving on.  Cavern of Souls makes me want to cry.  Humans, humans, humans… and zombies.  I don’t see myself playing decks that would merit that land, so if I pull any, they will be sold once those decks realize how good the card is against control.  Great for solving color issues in those tribal decks as well.  However, if Humans decide to get smart and start playing Islands, I may have to acquire a few.

All of the nonbasic lands in this set are pretty spicy.  Decks meeting the conditions they require would probably be interested in these.

Conjurer’s Closet is interesting, though its mana cost is very restrictive.  Blinking a creature each turn can be sick given all the enters the battlefield triggers on the creatures in this set.  Great for limited.  Not convinced it will see play outside of that at 5 mana.

Moonsilver Spear is a card I can get behind in limited.  Swinging with a random dork into a clogged board just got interesting.  Sure the thing dies, but he gets replaced with a 4/4 Angel you can re-equip the sword with.  Outside limited, 4 mana is probably more than a lot of decks can afford to pay.  I think the Swords will be the go-to equipment until Scars of Mirrodin rotates.

The big ol’ mythic dual-color cycle of angels…. They certainly make me feel like I am playing the wrong deck… Frites, meet your new reanimation targets.  Thank goodness they don’t nerf Delver as hard, but they all hit like trucks so I feel that is an inadequate consolation.  If you say, “they all die to removal,” you are correct.  Sadly, they do not die to all removal and that means they will be royal pains.  Oh, and don’t forget the grandmother of them all, Avacyn herself… an 8/8 flying, vigilant angel for 8 that makes all of her controller’s permanents indestructible.  Good luck with that… unless you play Islands, Plains, or Swamps.  In that case, you are fine… no need to worry.  Oblivion Ring, Vapor Snag, Smallpox, and Helvault (oddly, it IS mana-efficient to use it on Avacyn… Her flavor text matches this even… interesting) to the rescue!  Wait.. Helvault is colorless.  But need I go on?  Granted you are still dealing with an 8/8 flier… getting hit by that thing probably isn’t an option, so don’t expect reinforcements to arrive in time.  Chump blocking with Spirit tokens seems fine.

I think I’ve made my point.  Avacyn will most likely not see much play.  She might be a good sideboard card for Frites against certain matchups, but she is no all-star, and she is hard to hard-cast, relegating her to the sidelines (as far as I can tell… perhaps a ramp deck will make effective use of her).

Terminus is also beautiful.  A Wrath of God for Frites, Zombies, and other nasty graveyard-exploiters.  This and Vessel of Endless Rest may be enough for Frites to consider adding a few shuffle effects to keep all their goodies off the bottom of their library.

I suspect everyone and their brother will be putting together an Angels deck, so prepare…  Also, prepare to profit from this set.  I suspect the angels will be big-time sellers in the secondary market, possibly as big as Vampires was if a competitive version becomes available.  I might pull the trigger on my first booster box ever.  With only 244 cards in the whole set, a big score could put me in the black before I finish opening all the packs.

Treacherous Pit-Dweller is an interesting gamble.  The flavor is awesome: “This guy over here managed to kill me, so he must be stronger than my other master; I’ll join his side.”  It seems like a good card.  A 4/3 for 2.  Will be interesting to see if this guy gets a shot in competitive.  I have a feeling the risk will be well worth it.  Lots of Ebay sales have him at $0.99 for 4.  May end up being random junk, but only time will tell.  Personally, I’m keeping my evil eye on this one.

Silverblade Paladin.  Another interesting card.  Yes, the double strike is fragile as well as the creature that confers it, but unchecked, this guy can bruise many, many ribs.  Also one of those sleepers.  There are enough blink effects between white and blue to make me believe soulbound will be a legitimate mechanic in competitive.

Entreat the Angels, as expected, has not escaped the hype.  Ebay presale prices are already starting to get up there.  There was this one card waaay back in Scourge called Decree of Justice.  It saw some significant time in the limelight as a way to end games.  Control mirrors were fought over resolving this spell.  Perhaps those times have returned?  Only time will tell.

Devastation Tide gets me extremely excited.  Finally, a foolproof way to deal with all those stupid tokens!!!!!!  I’d love it if this card got some love, but I don’t have my hopes up.  The hard-casting cost is rather reasonable, so who knows…  And the ebay prices are higher than many of the other cards.

Tamiyo, the Moon Sage seems really good.  He protects himself and has a significant impact as soon as he enters the battlefield.  People have already caught on.  Pre-sale prices on ebay are over $60 for 4.

Cards with an X in their cost are always good for second looks.  Divine Deflection is no exception.  XW to prevent the next X damage taken by you and permanents you control and deal it to target creature or player.  Using it in MTGO is going to be a pain, but it may be worth it.  This is a very interesting card with a multitude of uses.  I cannot wait to see how the price on this card changes.  It seems it would be nearly impossible to lose against some decks once you have this in hand and enough mana to redirect any lethal assaults.  Having this in your deck will drastically change how people play.  The opponent will be forced to plink you to death slowly once he is wise to the trick.  The highest price I see for the pre-sales that are not Buy It Now (which are overpriced) is $4.57 for 4.  That may be where it stays.

Restoration Angel has not been spared from the limelight on the pre-sales… over $5 for 4.  To be expected, as it is probably one of the best given its ability to trade 1-for-0 with targeted removal spells.

Infinite Reflection feels as though there should be a way to break it.  The mana cost is high, but so is Hive Mind.  If it finds a home in some sort of combo deck, expect the price to bump up a bit.  Its price at the moment is minimal.  Should be able to pick up copies during the pre-sales on eBay  for $0.99 for 4 or perhaps a bit more without too much trouble.

Deadeye Navigator is an interesting card.  It is difficult to deal with save for mass removal.  It does not have any kind of evation, but combining it with a common soulbond creature (Wingcrafter) will solve that issue.  I like it, but doubt it will see much serious play.  Should be no trouble getting some of them for dirt cheap on eBay.  

You can view the entire spoiler at www.mtgsalvation.com.  Just click on the Avacyn Restored spoiler tab.

That’s about all I have for now.  Good luck and have fun in the pre-release this weekend.  So, what cards will you be keeping your eye on?

Mono-Blue Delver: Fifth Edition

I decided to step up to the plate and add the other two Snapcasters.  Having them as an access point to more counterspells, bounce spells, or filtering spells seems pretty nice.  In addition, they leave room for complete blowouts if I catch the opponent napping since I can drop him at the end of his turn, flashback Vapor Snag to bounce the blocker the opponent left behind, play and equip Runechanter’s Pike on my turn, and swing for the win.  I really like the deck against the mirror.  I have only lost 2 games out of about 8 to the mirror and both of those losses were due in part to misplays, so if there is any matchup I would be willing to sacrifice a few games to, it would have to be that one.  Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite is a huge beating and I have tried pretty much everything to improve my chances against him, including Phantasmal Dragons.  Most Delver decks run Phantasmal Image, but I am not ready to spend close to $10 each on a card that will not be around too much longer.  My most recent attempt at a solution is Mind Control.  Stealing the creature is better by far, anyway.  It forces them to throw another one up to deal with him, which will be harder than getting the first one up since their mana dorks are dead draws once you steal him.  This is a solution I could not recommend to other Delver decks, as their filter package does not dig as deep as mine, and they do not run as many lands.  Unfortunately, I have not had the opportunity to deploy this solution despite the fact that I have one maindeck.  I am hesitant about going to 2 maindeck since it is almost worthless against Delver and I really have no maindeck means of protecting it other than counterspells, but…. my Delver matchup is really good as it stands, and I have an uphill battle against ramp decks that pack a lot of fatties so that may be my only legitimate choice.  Here’s what I’m planning on running now:

3 Invisible Stalker
4 Delver of Secrets
4 Snapcaster Mage
1 Dungeon Geists
4 Runechanter’s Pike

4 Ponder
2 Dissipate
3 Forbidden Alchemy
3 Mana Leak
Thought Scour
Vapor Snag
Mind Control

Buried Ruin
21 Island

The numbers seem all wrong to me on paper, but that might actually be a good sign given how wrong I usually am about what is actually good.

Sideboard:

1 Bonehoard
4 Disperse
2 Dissipate
1 Dungeon Geists
1 Invisible Stalker
1 Mana Leak
1 Mind Control

Seems horrible, but I guess we will find out…  Comments and suggestions are welcome.  As far as the logic is concerned, I have found Dungeon Geists to be less useful than many of the other cards in the deck against Delver, so I dropped one out in favor of another Mind Control.  That way, the slot has a minimal impact on my Delver matchup.  I am down to 12 creatures maindeck.  I’m not entirely sure what to expect.  Hopefully, dropping out a few creatures will have a minimal impact on the early pressure the deck is known for.

Mono-Blue Delver vs. U/W Delver

Not happy how I performed in this match… I made a couple of really stupid misplays.

I was not impressed by Nim Deathmantle or Darkslick Drake either.  They were dead draws.  It’s back to the drawing board on that part of the sideboard.  Disperse has not had an opportunity to truly shine, but I think they are fine for the time-being.  The extra Dissipates were fine also.  Nihil Spellbomb never had a chance in the limelight.  I saw no need to board them in against the mirror.  There are some cards I am contemplating for replacement of Nim Deathmantle and Darkslick Drake: Trigon of Rage, Manor Gargoyle (immune to Ancient Grudge and other “destroy” effects… at least while it’s on the defensive), Pierce Strider (since it has an immediate impact and a rear end that’s just big enough), and the other 2 Dungeon Geists.

Anyway, enjoy the match!  Let me know what you think.  My nerves got to me a little.

Mono-Blue Delver: Fourth Edition

After a little thought, I realized quickly that although Negate  might be a good card in several matchups, it will not work to throw them in along with all the other countermagic in the deck.  Assuming you are not swapping them out for 3 of the Mana Leaks, you are looking at a troublesome time.  From six counterspells to a full nine, assuming no more were added.  Aggressive decks are fueled not by counterspells.  This must be rethought in light of an actual plan against the decks.  Now, they might still be correct, but I truly was contemplating just throwing them in with the Mana Leaks.  Instead, adding 2 Dissipates to the sideboard sounds better.  So.. for the G/R/x ramp decks, my sideboard strategy will look something like this:

+2 Dissipate, -3 Thought Scour, +2 Nim Deathmantle, +2 Darkslick Drake, -1 Runechanter’s Pike, -2 Delver of Secrets

Yes.. a Delver deck that boards out its cornerstone card.  While Delver is the meat to these potatoes, square meals that do not include meat are actually pretty darn good.  Keep in mind that this plan was constructed in about 5 minutes, with only 3 games as a reference point.

For Solar Flare lists, I will be doing something similar.  Only here, I will not board out my Delvers:

+2 Dissipate, -3 Thought Scour, +2 Nim Deathmantle, -1 Runechanter’s Pike

I really shouldn’t even be posting sideboarding strategies because they will vary greatly by the time I put pen to paper and finalize a build.

Anyway, here is a completed decklist and sideboard (no links to the cards because I really want to get to testing):

4 Delver of Secrets
2 Dungeon Geists
4 Invisible Stalker
2 Snapcaster Mage

2 Dissipate
4 Forbidden Alchemy
4 Mana Leak
4 Ponder
3 Thought Scour
4 Vapor Snag

4 Runechanter’s Pike

2 Buried Ruin
21 Island

Sideboard:

2 Dissipate
2 Darkslick  Drake
2 Negate
3 Nihil Spellbomb
2 Nim Deathmantle
4 Disperse

Bounce spells that can get rid of Curse of Death’s Hold and other nonsense will make life difficult.