Alright, so based off of the poll made here, the 18 of you decided for the first community deckbuilding project to be making a Backstab/Move Songhai deck, or as I like to call it, ‘Stabhai’. For reference, the next community deck projects will follow with Heal Lyonar, Artifact Vet, and Wall Vanar. During that time, I will also take suggestions for other deck archetypes to test (as a community) to put in the next poll.
As the first of many, I will try and walk you through how this works. First, I will hold a poll to see which of 4 deck archetypes will be tested and in what order based on popularity. During this time, I’ll try and do some testing with the percieved no.1 so I can get the actual deckbuilding thread out ASAP. I’ll post my conclusions, latest decklist, and other suggestions from my testing to give others a sense of what I have come across when attempting this archetype. From their, feel free to leave your decks and information regarding the archetype and conclusions you have reached to help finalize a deck with this. This thread will last for as little as 5 days to as long as 7, depending on the number of participants and games tested. Please feel free to contribute to this project .
Total games played: 12 games in rank 5 diamond; 6 won, 5 loss, 1 tie (while making changes to the deck)
Purpose: In making the deck, I had no real end in mind, just wanted to make a viable move Kaleos deck utilizing Onyx Jaguar and some of the new cards released, such as Obscuring Blow. Nothing much to say here.
Card Choices: Besides Daggered Kiri, Beast Master is the only neutral minion with celerity, and I chose him over Kiri because they share the same attack stat AND Beast Master has frenzy, which can be utilized with inner focus as a semi-board clear. Celerity also gives Beast master 2 procs from Onyx Jaguar, which has helped me get exact lethal in one game. Also, as a quick fyi, giving Backstab to a frenzy minion will only deal backstab damage to the enemy directly behind it, and normal damage to every other minion, in case you were wondering. Obscuring Blow is also a really powerful card in this deck list, as you can buff any of your 2 attack or less minions and not have to worry about it being out of inner focus range. Due to this and Onyx Jaguar synergy, we run Kaleos alongside x3 MDS and x2 Juxta position (I chose this spread due to MDS being useful than Juxta in more cases despite Juxta being a bit more flexible, especially when disrupting enemy minions).
Originally, I had tried running x1 Geomancer for the late game and x3 Ethereal Blades, although Geomancer ended up being a dead draw in most situations and overall had little impact on the game (especially when Vaath keeps using Earth Spheres). I also found that I was drawing too many spells (which is especially bad with Kaleos) and couldn’t do anything, so I opted for minions like x2 Rock Pulverizers (haven’t used yet) and x3 Dioltas (originally, I had tried out Sunsteel, but opted for Dioltas due to it’s higher stats. Mainly a preference choice).
Matchups and Gameplay: The main problem this deck faces is against heal swing decks like Vaath (running earth spheres) and Cassyva (with her Kelainos and Spectal Blades), and against decks that are faster than you, like the new Starhorn and board-heavy Revas. I am not fully experienced with Songhai (mainly due to their combo based nature), so I can’t give specific advice on how to play Songhai decks. However, it is important to be mindful on board control and the amount of burst that you can afford to deal, and be mindful on how you spend your inner focuses (I would try and always save one for lethal combos with cards like Onyx Jaguar, Beast master, and backstab shenanigans.
Card Suggestions for deck testing:
Tusk Boar: It’s rush ability, potential to deny early mana tiles, and potential to return to your hand are all amazing abilities that I feel would work perfect in this deck. Suggested replacements: -2 Rock pulveriser, -1 Heaven’s Eclipse (I barely end up using 1 of them anyways), +3 Tusk Boar
Sunsteel Defender: As an alternate choice to Dioltas, mainly based on the user’s preference (Sunsteel has a higher survivability rate due to Forcefield while Dioltas can provide a strong 0/10 Tombstone with provoke that can be buffed) Suggested Replacement: -3 Dioltas, +3 Sunsteel OR a possibly a mixture of the two.
Lantern Fox: I run Sojourner as a way to directly draw cards from my deck and due to its stronger body, but you can choose to run Lantern Fox due to the overall versatility of Phoenix Fires (although on average Sojourner can net you more cards and draws directly from your deck, which I feel is stronger. However, Lantern Fox’s effect triggers directly from taking damage, which is harder to play around in comparison to preventing a minion from dealing damage). Suggested Replacement: -3 Sojourner, +3 Phoenix Fires
I can answer any questions (either regarding my deck results or about the project as a whole) and please feel free to contribute your decks and results as well~