Crucible of Words – Are you getting enough vegetables? By Cyrus Bales

Crucible of Words – How do you solve a problem like a Mindsculptor? By Cyrus Bales


A lot of talk about the standard format today falls on the feet of Jace, The Mind Sculptor. Obviously a powerhouse in the format, results from the US suggest he is the be all and end all of type 2, however here in the UK, Vengevine remains unforgotten. At last year’s Great British Nationals, five of the top eight decks were loaded with four Vengevine, two of which met in the finals. The UK has retained its affinity for this loveable green Vegetable menace, and whereas other countries like the US are feeling the sting of his absence, here he’s chewing up Jace, The Mind Sculptors whenever he gets the chance.

The main Vengevine deck has always been Naya, whilst he has found himself in Bant decks before, the support of Bloodbraid elf in the past made RWG the logical choice, and now Cunning Sparkmage helps to reconfirm that choice, since the hasty pinger has rather an impressive ability to shoot down 1/1 Squadron Hawks.

Vengevine has many obvious merits, being able to pass the “Jace Test” is always a good start, meaning that in the face of a recurring Unsummon effect, the creature can make a decent impact. His recursion from the graveyard though, can overwhelm control opponents, and since the famous UW Caw-Blade deck tends to run Day of Judgment, Gideon Jura and Tumble Magnet as its main removal package, it allows Fauna Shaman a couple of turns to do its thing and stock your graveyard up, ready for a vegetable harvest.

However there is a trade-off for playing this deck. A certain Jolly Green Giant (Primeval Titan) likes to eat such vegetables. Valakut, The Molten Pinnacle decks have a fast enough clock that is too difficult for Vengevine decks to disrupt, that they boast very favourable match ups here. Their sideboard packed with removal for these smaller creatures make it rough for the Naya deck before and after sideboarding. Of course, Valakut decks themselves tend fold to Caw-Blade decks in turn, thus bringing us full circle, and actually making for an enjoyable and healthy metagame, where certain things balance each other out.

I suppose what I’m really trying to say in the face of the results from the US, is that American’s don’t get enough vegetables, who’d of guessed eh?

Thanks for reading and thanks for sharing.


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