Hoo, boy, let's take this from the top. A lot has changed since Awaken, My Masters!
, and I like to think it's for the better. It's still largely experimental, I'm nowhere near proud enough to pretend, but what it does different winds up being more conventionally powerful, even if it's not as silly as warping in Great Kiln Titan and immediately bonding a Scourstone Sentinel or anything. It's still exactly bombastic enough to make me happy and that's what counts.
Let's start with what's new. From the top!
is a card I will admit to having drastically underestimated. When 'the cards that make you win' are all sentinels and relics, getting to them faster is plenty worth occasionally tossing a Torch or an Initiation. That initial first impression is a bit of a stealth advantage she gives you, just because people are surprisingly good at underestimating her until they realize you just paid 2 and exhausted your 0/1 to draw a Great-Kiln Titan
. Once in a while your opponent respects the shovel and chooses to Torch her. That's a Torch that didn't go into your Trail Maker
who is much, much more essential to the gameplan.
is... a really interesting include that I'm surprised has been working out so well. It's 'a relic' for Monolith Guardian
to use to get huge, until you draw a Mysterium Orb or a Power Stone or something. At that point, you've very easily hit 6 or 7, which is a weird number for this deck if you don't have a Heart of the Vault in hand. Suddenly it's no skin off your back to crack it for 6 and draw 2, as gross as that may normally sound. This is all on top of that 1 mana Scout, which is honestly very, very valuable a lot of the time. It's perfectly reasonable to look and think the deck could use Temple Scribe, but... this deck is not a deck for 1/1s with double-influence costs on your Power Stone/Trail Maker turn. On top of that, those cards would be dead drawn with Amaran Shoveler, and obviously that's not ideal. Family Charter costing 1 is actually a pretty big deal, to be perfectly honest.
got a lot more consistent when the deck shifted into an even more Sentinel-heavy core. I don't think I need to explain why being able to slap down a 7/8 with Overwhelm alongside your SST a turn or two after you put down your 4 mana 7/7 is such a nice thing. That said, be extremely wary about when you play him; this deck already kinda just... folds to Harsh Rule. That's gonna be a fact of life no matter what you do, and you don't want to lean into that by getting too overzealous with your giant idiot robot sons.
What didn't wind up making the cut in this edition:
I was under no delusions Waker of Ancients
was more 'fun in theory' than 'good in practice'. It's hilarious warping in SST, I still love that, but... She's good when your deck happens to be shuffled in a way that you can hit all your gas incidentally. Amaran Shoveler winds up being a better way to actually find the dang gas pedal. You're gonna draw that card, and if you'd hate it, you throw it away, and if you'd want it, you keep it. This over Waker, who just winds up depressing you every time your turn starts and you didn't see Crimson Firemaw.
Speaking of Crimson Firemaw
, this card is still absolutely one of my favorites, so cutting him was a bit upsetting, but it's really all because of Shoveler. It's an extremely good card, and it works really well in a deck shaped like this, but if we're going all in sentinels, we should go all in
. Besides, without him you feel less bad slamming SST onto the board, since those two live and die at war with each other.
Probably the sorest cut for me was Groundbreaker
, just because I love that idiot, but... Triple fire by turn 4 is really just too steep to hit so much of the time... and the Double Damage keyword being why he's fun makes him bad with the Scourstone > Novaquake bond combo... And you usually beat down hard enough to outpace lifegain anyway... It's just not the deck for him. I swear to you, I will find the deck for him, but sadly this isn't it.
... was only there in the first place because I thought he looked cool and fun. He's meant for a wildly
different deck than this. Whatever it is. Invoke the Waystones/Stirring Sands Reanimator? Is that a thing humans can do? Anyone tried that yet? ... Anyone want
... And no, of course I'm not cutting Novaquake Titan
. So help me god that card could cost 50 and I would play it because it's just so fun.
So what do all these changes add up to?
Well, Shoveler and all the new Scry wind up making this get into its groove much more consistantly. Family Charter pulling double-duty as draw comes through more often than you'd expect (please don't blow it up when it's your only relic with a Monolith Guardian on board, I still blank out and make that mistake once in a while because I'm dumb). Leaning out of Firemaw means you need to be more wary of having your turn 4 move, but this does kinda make up for it.
All that having been written out, this is still just a product of me alone with myself, and a handful of really nice and friendly comments. Honestly, the reception to the first draft of this deck was way, way more encouraging than I initially expected, and I appreciate all of it. I've been doing my best to sincerely take all the feedback into consideration with what I've changed, and I'm absolutely gonna keep doing that if people are gonna keep being even half as helpful as they've been. Here's hoping all that digging helped me strike gold somewhere along the line.