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Tribal and Tribulations: Mountain, Lackey, Go!

March 22, 2011

Turn 1: Mountain, Goblin Lackey?, Pass Turn
Turn 2: Wasteland, Aether Vial, Declair attackers, Swing with Goblin Lackey, Siege-Gang Commander.
Opponent EOT: activate wasteland, targeting some goodie on the battlefield.
Turn 3: Untap, Put a counter on Vial, Draw a land, play land, declare attackers, (activate SGC ability, targeting a creature if need be) swing, hit, drop a bomb.

Ideally a great first turn is a resolved Goblin Lackey, second to that is a resolved Aether Vial. Goblins have been around for a long long time. Over the course of the years, there have been many incantations of Goblins, whether they fly in a inflated toad, or on the backs of a wolf. Goblins have long survived the many wars in the multiverse.

To this day if you go back to your local game store and sit around listening to classic tales of Magic in youth, you will notice that Goblins usually tend to pop up one way or another.

Today’s Standard Goblin decks are as they have been through out magic’s history, annoyingly fast and aggressive. while in standard you will not face the lovely beauty’s of Goblin Lackey or Goblin Pile Driver, you do face many threats that can be equally as deadly. However I am not here to talk about Standard Goblins, in fact I will leave standard alone.

The topic today as you probably guessed already is Legacy Goblins, a tier one deck that has changed and shaped metagames since it’s early inception many years ago and still does today. While albeit there are many variants of goblins from red/black to red/green, nothing is more so classic than Mono red.

DID YOU KNOW! that some of the most successful decks in magics history have almost always splashed red for removal or burn?

Goblin decks are built around 4 key cards

Aether Vial – by pass your turn, by pass countermagic, it gives you an edge that all countermagic decks hate.
Goblin Lackey – he lets you play creatures for free when he successfully deals damage (non-combat or combat).
Goblin Ringleader – Ringleader fills up your hand when you need more ammo for goblin cannon.
Goblin Matron– searches for exactly what you need, be careful though, it can sometimes be very tricky, play with caution.

Now that we have our keycards let us look for some support to annihilate our opponent.

One of the first cards that we can look at, is of course Goblin Piledriver, Piledriver is one of the 3 main win-conditions of the deck. His insane triggered ability causes heavy damage to opponents life points, when unblocked. However this is often not the case, since opponents place creatures and removal in his way

Goblin Warchief along with Lackey and Vial – is the reason that such heavy creatures as Goblin Ringleader and Siege-Gang Commander are part of the deck. He is very threatening, because of his cost-reducing ability in combination with providing all goblins with haste. This makes him a favoured target for removal.

There have been many games where I have dropped a SGC for 3 rather than 5 trust me, Warchief is not to be replaced at any cost. Many have argued that Goblin Chieftain is a great replacement for him, but what when it comes down to the wire, swarming is much more important than the boost, and anything in Legacy that can be played cheaper, is held at a much higher value mana wise, since land’s don’t have a tendency to stick around long.

SGC is the 3rd win-condition of the deck, his strong Come into play trigger makes him a very good card for both offence and defence. Clever opponents burn/remove him in response on his come into play trigger to avoid being shot down by his tokens. The best thing we can do in this case is to sacrifice him for his own ability. He has a huge impact on the board: with SGC in play we can oftentimes hold our creatures back and leave lands untapped to use his activated ability in response on removal/board sweepers.

So what is the second kill condition of the deck since I skipped one to three? well it’s Goblin Ringleader, a resolved ringleader gives you more threats for your opposing player to contend with. Assuming of course you don’t get screwed by your deck & shuffle & cut, by top decking 4 lands. (trust me it happens and it sucks)

Gempalm Incinerator trades 0:1 (in the worst case 0:0), can’t be countered by ordinary countermagic, sneaks itself through a Standstill and even has a body to block/attack with. One should carefully count all Goblins in play (even Mutavault is a Goblin once in a while) and consider opponent’s removal (which lowers your Goblin count) before using GI.

So there you have your supporting case to Mountain Lackey Go!

What else do you need to know right? well your land base is so important to this deck as well, I have seen many decks run duel lands if they splash, but to prevent yourself from being targeted with wastelands I would seriously consider not running duels unless you deem it is absolutely necessary to your metagame.

myself I run 24 lands in my goblin deck
4 Rishidon Ports
4 Wastelands
8 Fetchlands
8 Basic Mountains

I can not go into the importance of thinning your deck, while the payment of life for a land may hinder you at times, the over all importance of keeping your land base intact is much more important.

Wastelands are wastelands they do what we need them to do, and ports lock our opponents land giving them the inability to play something will be prevalent in their destruction.

So lets build a deck now:

Artifacts
4 Aether Vial

Creatures
4 Gempalm Incinerator
4 Goblin Lackey
4 Goblin Matron
4 Goblin Piledriver
4 Goblin Ringleader
3 Goblin Sharpshooter
1 Goblin Tinkerer
4 Goblin Warchief
3 Mogg War Marshal
2 Siege-Gang Commander
1 Skirk Prospector

Basic Lands
6 Mountain

Lands
4 Bloodstained Mire
4 Rishadan Port
4 Taiga
4 Wasteland

Sideboard:
2 Relic of Progenitus
1 Tormod’s Crypt
1 Boartusk Liege
1 Stingscourger
3 Krosan Grip
4 Mindbreak Trap
3 Pyrokinesis

Tomorrow. Vampires!!! Muhahahahaha

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