Pledge at least $1 to eternalwarcry.com on Patreon and the ads will be removed as a thank you!

Xenan Vowerglass/Reanimator Set 10

Throne Deck By
IlyaK1986
IlyaK1986+0568
The Great Parliament // Owls and Dragons

+13

Cost Curve

Type

Faction

Information

So, set 10 is here, and brings some new goodies. These new goodies turn a deck that was previously competitive but maybe a bit under the radar due to a clumsy early game into...an utter monstrosity.

For those not familiar with it, this is Xenan Vowerglass/Reanimator--a deck that aims to ramp out a bunch of power ahead of curve in order to play threats with massive summons that completely dominate the board while also being able to disrupt the opponent to various extents. The original creator of the deck is isomorphic, as with many other fascinating combo/synergy-driven decks, but I updated the list after running into Duccio Patane who was at Rank 2 with it, the last time I checked.

So, the mechanics of the deck are as follows:

Step 1: Mill yourself to put power into the void using cards like Darkwater Vines, Sporefolk, and possibly cards like Sunset Priest or Malaise.
Step 2: Play power from the void using Arcanum Hourglass or Katra, The First Seal.
Step 3: Use that extra power to hard-cast Icaria, First Reaper on turn 5 to completely take over the game, or down the stretch, hard-cast Azindel, Revealed or Vara, Fate-Touched.
Step 4: The game-breaking combination: Vara revives another Vara that revives Azindel that creates 2 shadow/time units, allowing both Varas 2 more reanimations to create a 9-unit board from nowhere. If you have a bunch of power in the void, one of those last units should be a Katra to play a bunch of power and gain you a ton of life. Additionally, you can replay some dead self-mill units to restock your void, play a dead merchant to go to your market again, yadda yadda. Basically, big Vara ahead of curve is one of the game's most notorious game-breakers in the history of Eternal. At one point, she didn't even give voidbound to the units she reanimated, so a reanimator deck was essentially unbeatable lategame, which...is still kind of the case.

In my opinion, a lot of this deck is basically core at this point.

Let's go down the list, card by card.

Darkwater Vines: a new addition from set 10, and this exact deck is the reason that the card isn't as utterly busted at first blush--namely because the moment someone wants to play it just to fuel a Bloodseeker, they'll run into *this* deck and question all their life choices. However, in *this* particular deck, the card is absolutely nuts. As a cheap regenerator card, it's a huge roadblock against aggro, being able to trade into even a 3/2 like a Teacher of Humility or Argenport Instigator. Prior to now, reanimator lacked an on-rate body that committed to the board in its early turns. Not anymore, and that's scary.

Shadow Etchings: power and market access 2-in-1. Some people prefer Crack the Earth while some might prefer [/card]Ebon Dune Smuggler[/card]. Having struggled with Feln reanimator in gauntlet, one of the ways a deck like this can just die is to get stuck on power in the development phase, when a reanimator deck is at its weakest. Unlike any other form of market access, this card solves that at 1 power. The one potential downside here is running out of shadow sigils, with only 5 in the deck to fuel 8 vows and 4 etchings.

Arcanum Hourglass: crazy hyper-ramp in a 2-cost relic so long as self-discard permits. A build-around to be sure, but when you're casting 8-cost bombs, this card is very, very good. Obviously at its best when you go crest -> vow + hourglass (hence, vowerglass), but the foundation of the archetype.

Back-Alley Delinquent: self-discard to dump early fatties from your hand in favor of sabotage. Not as potent as in Feln when it can potentially cheat out a turn 3 Felrauk, but still very much a necessity IMO, because A) a 1/3 body on 2 is a good blocker for 2/1s and B) the sabotage can be absolutely vital when attacking the hands of decks playing Harsh Rule and Shen-ra Speaks.

Sporefolk: the OG self-mill card. Mills you for 5, no questions asked, then sticks around to either allow Katra to play more power, or just chump-block something.

Kerendon Merchant: deadly blocker. Again, some people might prefer Ebon Dune Smuggler here. Go with what you like best IMO.

Sunset Priest: self-mill that passes the vanilla test, so, again, board presence when the deck is at its weakest. However, this can easily be substituted for Malaise if rushing to fill your void is more important than board presence, or even Spitefeeder if cheapness is more important than raw board presence. Additionally, if you're encountering a lot of aggro or even Rolants, Blightmoth is still very feasible as either a stall tool, or a card to clear the way from Rolant's deadly blockers.

Katra, The First Seal: and now we're talking. She's not as prolific as say, Rolant, Iron Tyrant because she requires more effort to build around, but oh *boy* does she have an insane ceiling. If you manage to stick 2 units before turn 4 while milling 3 power, she'll ramp you from 4 to **7**, and then your next turn, you can potentially make that 8th undepleted power drop and completely blow the game open. Even with one other unit on the board, she gets you to a turn 5 Icaria, First Reaper.

Icaria, First Reaper: tempo swing: the unit. Simply, contesting the board against her without a bunch of aegis is an exercise in futility. Her summon is an unconditional kill, and since it belongs to a unit, it can't be negated, either. The only way to avoid it is with a protection spell like Bubble Shield, but even then, one would still need to contend with a 5/5 deadly flier with a nasty entomb that induces various awkward lines of play from opponents.

Azindel, Revealed: big fatty that threatens to be a card advantage engine, and a the least, creates ground stall blockers even if he winds up eating a vanquish. But mostly, it's that he creates shadow units.

Vara, Fate-Touched: well, it's not a reanimator deck without Eternal's queen of reanimation. For those that haven't played with her, 8 is a ridiculously high number, but the way she completely dominates games is an experience onto itself. Even if she doesn't revive Azindel for the big wombo combo that the deck is notorious for, if she revives Icaria, that's still "I played 2 huge deadly units and killed one of yours".

Shoaldredger: a new addition from set 10 that I saw Duccio Patane experimenting with. Completely experimental at this point, but given that the deck is basically entirely units outside of shadow etchings and the hourglass, this card's cost, in theory, should be going down *quickly*, so again, board presence during the time the deck is softest is a good thing. However, this card offers absolutely zero utility, so it'd be understandable to try something else in this slot.

Market:

Send an Agent: kills Adjudicator's Gavel, Prism Golem, any mono-faction flyer (which is...all of them at this point), and other potentially nasty enemy mono-faction relics. On the downside, compared to banish, it does miss Rolant and enemy Katras.

Silverblade Menace: completely flex, but this can double dip against other grindy decks because you can revive it with Vara.

Grasping at Shadows: if you hit the nuts and manage to self-mill Vara and Azindel in the development phase, grab this, and just slam the door on the game. However, not a 4-of in the deck because by the time a Feln deck would need to cast its second, Xenan will have most likely hit 8 power and can actually hard-cast its monsters.

Xenan Temple: pops the enemy face aegis when one of their units die, restores some life, card selection, contests board, and the unit is...okay. If Worldjoiner actually gets to start swinging, she snowballs the game hard, but it's mostly about the Xenan Augury and Xenan Initiation while drawing pressure from the opponent in some capacity.

Krull, Xumuc Occultist: and this is *the* reason to play Shadow Etchings. Once you hit 5 power, he becomes a 1-cost Grasping at Shadows for Katra or a Merchant. Also, this deck has a non-zero chance to actually *play* him.

Other cards to consider:

Malaise: the biggest single source of self-mill in the game, but at 2 power and a card that doesn't affect board, I'm not sure it's necessary anymore.

Vara, Vengeance-Seeker: if you're running into lots of aegis, "Baby Vara" still suppresses all of them while presenting a non-negligible threat that can also create a life buffer. Also, if you reanimate her while she's a 5/5, she can grow into a 7/7!

Crack the Earth and Ebon Dune Smuggler: other market mechanics. If you play Crack the Earth combined with Sunset Priest, Ark of Sol looks like a very legitimate possibility. Ebon Dune smuggler also provides the ability to get Forgotten Find from your market, but playing that on turn 4 is just such a low-impact play.

Banish: hits just about everything Send An Agent hits, but also hits Rolant, Iron Tyrant and Katra in the mirror. However, cost is everything, and banish does cost 1 more than agent.

Exploit: This is a REALLY good card if you have plunder fodder (Jotun Hurler and Xo of the Endless Hoard are the two prime targets). This deck doesn't really, but if the meta's slower in your neck of the ladder, this might be a card to try out.

Blightmoth: nerfed from 2 to 3, but the best card in the game to answer Rolant, Iron Tyrant's valkyrie reapers, while also slowing down aggressive decks. Still very much can get the job done, but just isn't as outright "don't even bother playing oni ronin" as it was before.

Shoal Stirrings: another set 10 goody. Or as I like to call it, Grasping at Mandrakes. Probably a bit too cute, but if you're on the Shoaldredger variant of this deck, this is worth consideration in a market.

Stray Into Shadow: if you're on a Crack the Earth market in a meta with some more aggressive decks, this is a consideration.

Ark of Sol: market card if you're on crack the earth, and better still if you play Sunset Priest.

Vara, Limitless: another potential tech slot card. Adds a substantial buff to your board once she's in play, her reanimation doesn't have a voidbound clause, and if revived by Vara, Fate-Touched basically bricks spot removal against the duo. A bit expensive at 7 for a card that has no impact before combat, though.

Various other shadow removal: suffocate and defile may have some consideration in various markets, or even taking some of the 6 tech slots (currently occupied by Sunset Priest and Shoaldredger)

Playing *against* the deck:

To attack this deck, you'll want relic destruction and sweepers. Ergo, something like Stormblessed's worlds deck would probably cause some amount of problems owing to the various silences, copious amounts of relic destruction, and Know Thy Enemy cleaning up Azindel's summons. Ixtun Control might also be problematic, but the new set 10 cards might swing the matchup.

Another possible venue of attack is a strong air pressure game. A deck like Hooru flyers can fly over the early game dorks and possibly end the game if it can fade Icaria. Even various fire aggro decks can do a LOT of damage with Passionate Stonehammer equipped with a Kaleb's Persuader.

So yeah, enjoy the write-up, and enjoy the super-powerful deck.

Details

Shiftstone Cost
Does not include campaign cost
48,500

Premium Cost
276,800

Influence Requirements
2 6

Power Sources
4 16 4 29 24

Power Calculator
Shiftstoned Icon View Deck on Shiftstoned

Deck Rarities
18 22 17 18

Card Types
40 4 6 1 29

Contains Cards From Campaigns
Into Shadow [Set1004]
Shadow of the Spire [Set1087]
Bastion Rising [Set1097]

Archetype
Combo

Added
December 22, 2020

Views
4,306

Eternal Version
Empire of Glass

BBCode For Comments

Deck URL

Comments

Metanoia Edited Eternal Version: 21.01.13
Hi IlyaK1986,
Thank you so much for this deck and the excellent post explaining everything! Thanks to you and this list, I have made it to masters for the very first time!!! :-) (been playing since November last year) The list I have used is almost exactly the same with these differences: -3 Sunset Priest, +3 Spitefeeder and -3 Shoal dredger, +3 Vara Vengeance Seeker. The main reason for the Sunset Priest into Spitefeeder swap is that I don't like helping my opponents when they are also on a void deck (Xenan or Feln). Also it sometimes helps to get an extra unit on the field before you Katra. The main reason for including Vara Vengeance Seeker over Shoaldredger is obviously the aggro matchup. Also I have noticed a lot of opponents whining/groaning when I play her. Seems she is still a bit unexpected? What really puts her over the top for me is the market Silverblade Menace. That has stolen a number of important games for me and playing Vara first tot pop face Aegis, has been relevant at times. This also goes for having Vara remove face Aegis before playing a Sabotage but that does not come up as often.

So that is my reasoning and I have been loving those changes, but to be honest I did not try much of anything else so it may very well just be my own biased experience :-)

In the market I have dropped the Xenan Temple and replaced it with Nullblade, which has been absolutely spectacular for me. Obviously great in mirrors and in a pinch it can be very handy as extra removal for a potentially lethal threat. I have also considered Toll of Warfare and Steward of the Past in this slot, but Nullblade has won out on versatility.

As a final note I have played many matches with Malediction in place of Krull. I found that I almost never use Krull (like only once per 20 or 30 matches) and I was losing to aggro often. I did lMalediction for a while and I have changed back tot Krull now as an experiment and I am still unsure. Krull can be very good but I miss Malediction often. So I am still unsure about this choice.

Anyways, thanks again for your excellent guide and I would be curious to know what your insights and updates are at this point in time :-)
IlyaK1986 Eternal Version: 21.01.13
Wow! Huge congratulations! Yeah, all those changes are very reasonable. Great job on making masters, and not too long after you started playing, either. Hope you stick around and get your friends to join!
Metanoia Eternal Version: 21.01.13
Thanks :-) I see I have boasted a bit. I started PVP in November, but I played the game first in October. Anyhow. It's very possible to make masters with this deck, as a relative newcomer to this game. Which is the point I want to to make (while also boasting a bit, I admit). It may look like simple deck if you only consider "combo" mode, but it can also win games without reanimating at all and with just a very small ramp of 1 or 2 power. Those are the most skill testing matches and the ones that I enjoy winning the most. That and stealing cards from opponents with Azindel. I try not to be evil, but beating someone with their own cards is just so sweet sometimes. The other day I got to ultimate an opponent's own Marshal Ironthorn against them, in a very long match where I was able to ramp up to 15. That's just pure gold...
Soulsbornepain Eternal Version: 20.12.23
After hours of desperation on the ladder I've now trimmed the fat from my collection and crafted this deck. I succumb to the dark side.
Comment Deleted
Soulsbornepain Eternal Version: 20.12.17
Ah! This deck is good. I know, because I've lost enough games to it. I raise my hat. Is it just me, or is Krull & Shadow Etchings a little...broken? How would you compare this deck to the Talir-Kairos combo, is either one stronger and why?
IlyaK1986 Eternal Version: 20.12.17
I'm not sure I like the Talir Kairos combo deck because ultimately, the combo depends on sticking Talir through a fast spell window unless you either A) fairly reach 11 power or B) grasp her + play merchant, but grasping Talir involves playing a lot of mono-shadow units to mill yourself. The fun part about Katra is that she can indeed generate the power to play Talir, but Katra doesn't normally get someone to 11 power for a Talir + merchant combo right away.
Soulsbornepain Eternal Version: 20.12.17
Thanks, that makes sense. It's a shame I can't afford this list, I would love to try it in action!
Comment Deleted