Profile photo of Neil Crompton By Neil Crompton On August 07, 2011 Posted In Other

Yurt Control

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August 7, 2011
Gilded YurtLately there’s been a bit of talk on the mothership forum about a deck using Gilded Yurt that seems to be dominating its local scene, somewhere in Germany.  I had experimented a bit with Yurt-based decks a while back, but eventually dropped them for (what I thought were) stronger decks.  So I’ve decided to take another look at the deck to try and figure out what it’s capable of.
The first version I tested was Banker/Arcanist, starting 2 Greed with lots of Obsession.  I used Free Trade Agreement to gradually get ahead of the opponent on cards and resources, then once the Agreement had filled both players hands I’d hit the opponent with Degenerate Molestation.  Meanwhile the rest of the deck was built around Gilded Yurt and it’s effective analog Inadequate Wand, using lots of characters with effects that trigger when they enter and/or leave play.  It ran smoothely enough, but it couldn’t keep up with control decks that used the Arcane Research engine.  Free Trade Agreement relies on careful management of small incremental advantages, but when the opponent has access to significantly more resources than you, the Agreement ends up hurting more than helping.
The solution I came up with was “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em”.  So I switched the resource configuration so that I start with 2 Obsession, allowing me to play Arcane Research on turn zero, (my opponent’s first turn, with me going second whenever possible) putting 4 copies of Hidden Ruins into my discard pile.  That means I lose Degenerate Molestation, along with assorted toys like Muddle, Rouse and Wrinkly Rabbit.  There aren’t really any high-threshold Banker cards that fit the deck, but it’s worth it for the Arcane acceleration.  That brings me to this:
Framptle’s Inadequate Yurt
3 Framptle Tromwibbler, Lord of Bling
Framptle Tromwibbler, Lord of Bling4 Erotic Assassin
4 Swarm of Gnats
4 Quotidian Ejector
4 Violating Anomaly
3 Rummaging Millipede
1 Servile Centipede
4 Gilded Yurt
4 Inadequate Wand
4 Forget
4 Desolate
4 Mutiny Grant
4 Limited Liability
1 Unnatural Alteration
1 Postmortem Debenture
1 Quotidian Misfire
1 Subsection 5 Paragraph 12
4 Arcane Research
4 Hidden Ruins
4 Exploitation
10 Greed
2 Obsession (starting)
F The Tournament Faction
Violating AnomalyIdeally you want to spend your first and second turns returning Hidden Ruins that you buried on your zeroth turn.  If you get an Exploitation the Erotic Assassins can jump to your defence straight away.  If you don’t hit Arcane Research in your mulligan, your options for the first turn are effectively limited to a Quotidian Ejector.  You don’t want to play a Yurt until you can protect it, which is why the Assassins are so good early on.
From the second turn on, you want to be dropping a steady stream of characters that do stuff when they come and go, then bounce them in and out of play using a Gilded Yurt or Inadequate Wand.  Combined with Yurt and/or Wand, a Swarm of Gnats will empty the opponent’s hand, an Ejector will bounce everything, and a Violating Anomaly will do both of those and also draw you a bunch of cards.  Rummaging Millipede gets back any tactics you need, over and over again, while the Servile Centipede finds more from your deck.
If you’re facing an aggressive opponent, Framptle Tromwibbler is excellent at holding the fort.  You can keep him alive indefinitely using a Yurt or Wand, then get rid of him the same way when you want to start attacking.  Forget, Desolate and Limited Liability are fairly straightforward; they keep you alive.  The four singletons are there as a toolbox of answers available whenever you need them with the Wand or the Centipede.
Mutiny GrantThe coolest trick in this deck is Mutiny Grant.  On its own, it’s good at turning enemy attackers against each other, but in combination with the Yurt it really shines.  If you steal one of your opponent’s characters with the Grant, then send the stolen character to chillax in a Yurt, at the start of your next turn the character will come out of the Yurt refreshed, having conveniently forgotten that he was supposed to go home.  When the stolen character gets out of the Yurt, it counts as a brand new character, so you get to keep it indefinitely.  With Inadequate Wand to find more Mutiny Grants, and Rummaging Millipede to recur them, you’ll probably be able to steal several characters over the course of a game.
In terms of my ‘map‘ of Open Constructed, I see this deck as basically a version of Arcane-Banker Control.  If you’re looking to adapt this deck to your local metagame, that could be a good starting point.  (For example, Dwarvish Grimalkin and Wanton Wizard both could be good if you built the deck a little differently.)  I think the list above will still struggle against Mono-Arcane decks that have consistent early access to Muddle, because it’s so hard to win the Arcane Research war.  This deck probably has stronger synergies though, so if you get your Arcane off or if the opponent fails to mulligan into his, you should be fine.  This deck should also have a better matchup against aggressive decks, because Framptle and Limited Liability (both backed up by consistent recursion) make a pretty solid wall against attackers.
  1. I saw that article and it is a very interesting card. I dont have deep card knowledge yet but even I can see that being very nasty to combo with.

    On a side note, I have never understood the ‘fun’ in ruining others enjoyment of a game. I mean okay you have the the bestest deck in the shop. Write the deck list then make other decks! Or that is just me.

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    1. Each to their own, I guess. :) I really enjoy the competitive challenge of tweaking a deck to perfection, and testing it against the best decks. Just like in nature, there should always be an apex predator at the top of the foodchain, not just dominating but also forcing dynamic adaptation on the whole ecosystem. My favourite part of The Spoils is experimenting with that adaptive process, seeing how decks and the metagame in general shift around whenever anything changes at the apex. That can be a beautiful thing. :)

      1. Now I understand all of what you said in your response Neil. And I agree with it all. I’m looking forward to growing my card collection and being able to fine tune decks as well as creating new ones. But not ever using a new deck to just be annoying is just no fun. Which is how I understood the original post. No offense intended.

  2. The lack of Dwarvish Grimalkin seems odd. At worst it cantrips and blocks a random guy. Even though you mention it, it just seems like the cost of playing it is so small while the upsides are so high.

    Have you considered a singleton Mau Party? its obviously a bit awkward in a metagame full of Muddle and Degenerate Molestation, but given the decks ability to just keep blocking and generating value from the characters, the raw card advantage provided by Mau Party/Cash Out could turn the incermemental advantage of cards like Millipede/Centipede into an incredibly dominant position.

    Have you found Framptle/Limited Liability more effective than more spot removal/walk the plank. It seems like ‘swarm’ style aggro decks are losing out in favour of high creature quality via mono warlord/arcane haze, so the ‘fog/moat’ effects may simply be overkill when a fewmore nice pieces of removal would buy you sufficient time to set up some sort of Anomoly/Ejector-Wand/Yurt soft lock.

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    1. I’d definitely play Grimalkin before Mau Party, since it fits the theme so well. I’d probably go:

      +4 Dwarvish Grimalkin
      -3 Desolate
      -1 Violating Anomaly

      +1 Miraculous Regeneration
      -1 Postmortem Debenture

      +1 Karmic Cake
      -1 Erotic Assassin? Framptle?

      The Desolates aren’t great with only 2 Obsession anyway, although I’d keep one so that I can find it with the Wand or Centipede if necessary. Miraculous Regeneration replaces Debenture because it puts Grimalkins into play face-down. Karmic Cake, replayed via Rummaging Millipedes, can get your threshold high enough to really exploit the Grimalkin.

      I don’t think more removal is necessary. Mostly you can ignore attackers, by blocking with anything then Yurting or Wanding the blocker to safety. I like Framptle for his ability to hold off the attackers single handedly, which lets me spend a couple of turns using the Yurts/Wands more aggressively. Stopping characters from restoring is also extremely powerful, especially against characters with powerful deplete abilities like Athalamund Mangod (Athalamund is a house, and completely wrecks this deck if left unchecked.) and Senior Research Assisstant etc. I think Limited Liability is essential because Yurt is so fragile and makes you vulnerable to being 2-for-1’d. LL lets you chillax in comfort. :)

  3. Yo dont really need to get tactics with Grinalkin-Wand, since you should have enough characters such that wand-ing a Grimalkin isnt necessary, though its still great value once you get to 9 thresh.

    With the spot removal I was suggesting cutting back on the limited Liabiltiies/Framptles in favour of the ability to permenantly deal with threats via spot removal/walk the plank, rather than giving them time to find removal for a Framptle and alpha strike you. i.e. When you have a deck full of block-bouncing/blinking shenanigans and Mutiny Grants, fog/moat effects lose a lot of value since relying on them to protect you opens you up to losing to a removal spell on framptle or blazing zero/tacvac on Limited Liability, while simply using combining removal with your own characters doesnt have the ability to hold back hoardes of small guys, that doesnt seem very relelvant given the prevelance of midrange-control decks, or warlord decks relying on a few powerful characetrs. Though I can def see the value in having LL to protect a yurt, espacially if they have guardforce characters.

    Basically I think the way Serge went with using removal to compliemnt the value-characters gives better application against the midrange decks than Framptle/Limited limability, though if beating hordes of micromajigs becomes relevant then I think it would swing the other way..

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    1. Agreed about Grimalkin-Wand, but I’d still go the singleton Inhibit for maximum value.

      I’m not sure I agree that the metagame is so midranged. I see it as split between the two extremes; fast aggro and combo decks, and very slow control decks. (I see Warlord SiN as a ‘swarm’ deck, because it uses Tiny Sarumes to get to second-turn lethal SiN.) In between you have stuff like Haze and maybe the old-style SiN decks, but I think the format favours the extremes. Kinda speculative without more tourney data though.

      If it weren’t for Arcane Research, the deck could go back to starting 2 Greed and get all the awesome Arcanist tools, along with 8 extra slots to play with. It can then protect LL and Framptle with Muddle, and use Rouse to get more recursion that doesn’t rely on Yurt or Wand to be effective. That means that the hard-removal cards the deck is already playing, like Forget and (effectively) Mutiny Grant, would go further in stopping the midrange decks. Alternatively the third Obsession could just go into the deck as a Karmic Cake target, but we’d be tight on space.

      I’d also like to try adding 1 (non-starting) Rage, to be fetched with the Cake. That would give us ABZ or Tac Vac instead of Muddle, and Dark Awakening instead of Rouse. Maybe Watchtower, although it’s not ideal as an in-deck splash.

  4. Bump the Rage up to a Violence and you can do a Serge and splash Plunging Shriever.

    Inhibit is fine, and is justifiable even without the Grimalkin.

    Agree regarding the strength of AR hindering not only the overall trade/starting resource choices, but also limiting internal deck creativity. Going from designing AR decks to non-AR decks feels like you just got 8 free slots in your deck. Just a shame its so hard to justify at this point. I’m tempted to play a deck with Arcanist but no AR just on principle and for the greater creativity it affords.

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  5. I saw a huge number of aggro-rage decks at GenCon, so early game threats are still important to deal with in the meta. Your best bet here seems to be Ejector/Assassin early.

    Think it can hold off the rush? There were a lot of T2-3 wins when opponents weren’t ready!

  6. Pingback: Mangod Control

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