Starhorn and his twing fangs, a combo deck


#1

So recently, I was fortunate to open two twin fangs. I always thought that Starhorn was not worse than vaath, he just wants a very different game to be played: one where drawing the extra card is just significantly better for you than your opponent. This translates in playing a deck with lots of synergy as well as a deck that does not play the long game.

The deck I built can be seen below. The main engine is an idea I saw floating around. Essentially: Kujata cheapens minions, but deals damage to them. Dance of dreams draws you cards every time a friendly minion dies in a given turn. One kujata makes all your one drops basically free to cast and give you a card back if you have a dance of dreams active.
A second kujata will let all two drops become free in the deck and continue the draw engine. Now, kujata also deals damage to your minions. This damage that you are getting for basically free translates into a bigger twin fangs. If the opposing general is close to you, it is rather trivial to kill him in one shot.
The rest of the deck is shaped around getting to the three core cards and interacting with the opponent. The turn on which this deck can get the kill is pretty variable, but I have noticed that 7 mana is the most reliable. Many choices in the deck were made based on getting to turn 5-6 and then go off consistently.

http://i.imgur.com/cv5IQj2.png

The deck is still rather rough around the edges. I will go over a couple of inclusions and exclusions:

  • Artifact hunter: Essentially this is the third copy of twin fangs. I am not sure whether I like his inclusion yet. All in all, he is a nice card to play when you are still building up to the necessary mana to go off. I can imagine a scenario where he causes the chain of damage to break because he will cost 2 mana at the very least.
  • Visionar: The fourth twin fangs. This guy starts out pretty big and procs on dance of dreams. It is however slow, but on the other hand, it is nice to have a second route to attack from the turn before you go off. He is a risk to breaking the chain, but I thus far like his inclusion. Essentially, like the artifact hunter, he is there for the turns before you can go off.
  • Ghost lynx: This guy is here to remove blockers and provokes. Him being two mana is the reason why I play him over the repulsor beast. He is cheaper and dies far more easily. This is pretty valuable as it does not impact the chain.
  • Void hunter and Blaze Hound: Both provde a very reasonable body and draw cards easily. The reason why I am playing these over spelljammer is crystal related, though these also do more damage, which can impact the game more than the potential to draw a second card. They also draw the card immediately when I am doing the chain with two kujatas. The blaze hound in particular also works nicely with Starhorn’s BBS.
  • Woodwen: Helps freeze the opposing general in place for a turn, in case we have a runner. Restricting movement with woodwen is just a useful thing to have, It also works well as an ability that can stick around during the chain.
  • Prophet of the white palm: Early on, or the turn before you go off, the opposing general will try to wipe all of your creatures with mass removal, like a lyonar with tempest or Songhai with their AOE spell. They also try to break your twin fangs if you equip it before the turn where you go off. The prophet is protection against these effects. He is also free with one Kujata, which eases the strain on finding the second kujata.
  • No Blistering Skorn: I have considered playing this, but usually I do not have many minions on a given turn, especially minions that I cannot just suicide in. I can however see situations where blistering skorn breaks twin fangs or kills a kujata; he also costs 3 which for which I do not have many slots available.
  • Dragonlark: I have been impressed by this card. This is here to be a fine early card. He can be a removal spell. He can capture mana tiles. The best part about this card is that you can save him up safely far away from the opponent and fly in when you have a dance of dreams or twin fangs out.
  • What is up with all those one offs? I am still working out which of these effects I like to have. Jaxi has proven useful for this deck, as has the warlock. I am not sure with what I should replace them. I am considering the third prophet, as well as replacing some of the phalanxars. They of everything on the list have been very unreliable. They don’t do as good of a job as the warlock in the early turns. On the other hand, 6 damage is enough that most players seem to want to kill phalanxars no matter what.

Playing this deck is pretty easy. You are replacing cards to get to the kujata, dance of dreams and twin fangs. Of these, twin fangs is something you can pick up during a combo on a later turn. Early on, you are trying to get one of the three drops that act like “real” minions while not really costing you a card. Dragonlark is another card that is great early on. The biggest constraint for this deck is mana, and this little guy can capture a mana tile on the second turn, usually.
This deck floods the board because very few of its cards cost more than two mana. It is bliss to play a deck that almost always has turn one plays. Anyway, do not be afraid to cash in a dance of dreams early for three cards. The minions you play are nothing but a means to an end. They are all expendable except for kujata. If they draw you towards the other pieces for the combo, you will see that twin fangs damage stacks very quickly and does not really need the draw engine anyway. Finally, you can risk playing a twin fangs the turn before you go off against most opponents. Only vetruvian can be expected to run artifact removal in a high enough quantity, and even that has fallen out of favor. Just make sure to play it in a situation where you may at max lose one durability based on the board state. Kujata on the other hand is only played in the turn in which you go off, or far far away from the enemy, paired with a prophet. And even that is generally not the right move.

Let me know what you think on the build above. Inclusions/exclusions suggestions are all welcome. As are questions and comments. The main question I am struggling with is how many 1 and 2 drops I should play, while still retaining my interactivity with the opponent.
Note that I am playing this at gold 6 right now. I think I can get much higher. This deck has been beating the opposition quite consistently. My current sentiment is that most decks just are not equipped to deal with this kind of strategy. This deck kills you very, very quickly. Cards like Kron are just too slow for this thing. If the opponent is coming for a game that is about big minions, they are in a lot of trouble. For the record, I have won with this deck on the third turn.


Library of archetypes?[WIP]
Potentially the Dumbest Deck Ever
#2

To be honest is just looks like a worse version of typical dance of memes deck. It needs:

  • way more 1 hp minions to make the combo output damage more consistent
  • less gimmicky cards like visionar, woodwen and 1> minions in general that aren’t must haves
  • arguably a tracer or two to get in range for otk when needed
  • less draw card as 6 of them is an overkill

#3

Good old Dance of Memes deck. You seem to be cooking up your own version somewhere between relying on the combo and having some strong minions as a back up plan. If you would like bit of a detailed run down on how the normal dedicated dance deck works out check out the last deck here:

Alternatively you could try out the dentist if you want a deck that does not rely on the combo at all, but can still pull off those occasional turn three wins.


#4

Why would you recommend less draw? I feel that if I drop to a lower number, I will not get to the combo frequently enough.
The visionar is very experimental, though he has been performing well here. He is certainly expensive, which is a concern, but I have not yet gotten in a situation where it cost me the game. I am not convinced I need this to be a 1 or 2 drop for consistency.
As for woodwen: I would argue that this plays a similar role to a silhouette tracer. I may be overvaluing getting some value from my cards beyond their role in the combo. These are on the chopping block, but I do not know why this would be better than another two.

As for the more dedicated one turn kill deck, I see 18 one drops for the purposes of being fed to the combination. Have you experimented with a lower number of one drops?

What on earth is a meme deck by the way? Is this just the new street way of saying “combo deck”?


#5

It’s a very old deck and it’s name is literally “dance of memes”. One part is because the deck relies on dance of dreams to pull of the combo, and second part because the deck is an utter meme due to it’s horrific unreliability. It’s a fun joke deck to play and pulling of a 30 damage otk is incredibly satisfying, but the deck is far from being competitive and rightfully called a meme.

If you want a competitive magmar deck that runs twin fangs play modified version of vaath midrage that runs twin fangs, skorns and amps.


#6

What made the original version unreliable?

It does look like a one trick pony, and its cards do not seem to do anything beyond fuel the combo. I suppose that might have been the problem?


#7

You need to draw Kujata and you need it to stick. You also need to draw 2 other specific cards and you need to be in range of the other general which nobody ever will let you do once they see stuff like dragonlark. Its a fun deck, but it doesn’t have the means to be a reliable combo deck like combohai. And even Combohai is very damn hard to pilot and not horribly reliable.


#8

Well, Kujata does not need to stick. I just play it on the turn on which I attempt to win. There really is not a window for the opponent to deal with it.
I also think you do not really need the twin fangs in your hand on the turn on which you win. If you have a hand of 2/1 split between kujata and dance of dreams, I have no issues finding either the artifact or another kujata/dance.

As for running away: A player that has seen this before cannot run for more than a couple of turns. They can run until they are in the corner. By that point their best shot is to rely on a provoke minion, which my deck is set up to teleport away. All in all, by the turn on which you reach 7 mana, they will be close to you. Only a deck that can teleport the general away stands a chance.


#9

DA pulled this on me in a friends’ game on my Friday stream. Turn 3 Starhorn 33/x smack to the head. Ouch. :slight_smile:


#10

Believe what you want, it’s a fact that Dance of Memes isn’t very good.


#11

Have you tried running the deck with the additional card draw? Without the six 3 drops that draw cards, I would be inclined to agree.


#12

See, the problem with combo decks isn’t necessarily to not get the pieces, but that its really really damn obvious what you are trying to do. And if you play Kujata the turn you are enabling the combo you already need 6 mana for all your combo pieces, not talking about the mana you need for your 2-Drops. Combo decks also tend to have little to no good plays outside of their combo, and if you are trying to stall the game to >6 Mana with Dragonlarks and Phalanxars you are gonna have a bad time. Once one realizes your deck archetype, i’d just bodyblock your general with my superior minions, and your only outs are Grovekeeper, repulsor, tracer and stuff like that, and by going to the other end of the board and always clearing your weak minions i can avoid that too. As i said, feel free to play the deck, if you are having fun thats great, but it doesn’t change the fact that its not a good deck objectively.


#13

The deck has been set up to play a normal game until that point though. Honestly, the three drops have fine stats to work with. The two drops like maw and ghost lynx are in there to deal with body block strategies. Generally, this deck deploys card at a far higher rate than an opponent. Quantity has a quality of its own; it tends to overrun the opponent. It does not matter how much more value your cards give you if you only play 1 for every 2-3 that I play.

Dealing with my minions also slows the opponent down significantly, because they will not be running away in that case.

While I agree that it is pretty quickly obvious what is going on, that does not mean that you can stop it that easily.


#14