The Tragic Tale of S-Rank Starhorn


Look at this deck. Tell me what’s missing?

Young Silithar? Sure. Makantor? Okay. Mandrake? Fine. These are all expected. But what isn’t there? What should be there and yet, is not there?


I climbed up to Rank 2 with a version of this deck that did away with such things as Young Silithars to account for those little rascals that summon the bigger rascal. And it did so well. But then Rank 2 happened, and I hit a wall, and I couldn’t do anything about it. It couldn’t be the mechs, I thought. That couldn’t be the issue. But game after game I found Mechaz0r didn’t come to my rescue quite on time. I found that he wasn’t always there for me. That sometimes… that sometimes I didn’t need him.

The days were long, the nights were dark. I knew I had to cut him out of my life. But I couldn’t. My heart ripped itself at the seams as it climbed up my throat and suffocated me, its bulging muscles stretching the limits of my windpipe. I couldn’t. He had been so good to me. Just because sometimes he couldn’t look me in the eyes, just because sometimes he arrived just a turn before the opponent gets lethal, just because sometimes he forgets our children’s birthdays, that didn’t make him a bad win condition. Did it?

I cheated on him. I’m not proud of it. A Young Silithar here, a Greater Fortitude there. Once… heh… once I had a crazy night of memes with a Sphynx, milling people’s eyes after flooding their hand, and I kept calling him back, and calling the others back, they kept performing so well… soon, before I even knew it, I had hit S-rank on the chiseled, slender back of a Thumping Wave-buffed Saberspine Tiger.

That’s when Mechaz0r airdropped into the bedroom. With a whir, he went into a frenzy, but in the end, it was all nothing but noise and hurt. Even he knew it. Even he knew our relationship had died a long time ago. I haven’t talked to him since. I wish I knew how he was doing. The children miss him so much. But… he can’t be around us anymore. I think about the black eye he gave me, sometimes. Did I deserve it? Could I have treated him better? Maybe I should have just… spared him the indignity of it all, of having him find out about us that way…

Anyway this deck is pretty good.

Healyonar Tactica, Tips & Tricks [Resource]

The more I look at this, the better it becomes; maybe it’s the thanksgiving alcohol

Cheap? Check (although I guess taygete makes it more like 6k)

S-rank? Check

Hilarious, yet heartwrenching writeup? Check

Does Sphynx actually perform for you? Beyond that, is there any reason to use Starhorn over Vaath?


Love the writeup! Glad to see some originality with the Sphynx.


You deserved it. Consider it a mercy he didn’t blast off that useless lump of bone you call a horn.


I guess on turn you cast Sphink (or cast Riddle back) you also use your BBS and mill the shit out of opponent deck ? But that’s a lot of RNG and your opponent must already have at least 5 cards in hand. Casting Riddle back is opening a spot in your hand and filling one in opponent’s, may give some nice value to your BBS, this may be an efficient synergy.


There are two ways of using Sphynx: when your opponent is being all smug and efficient and always having five cards in hand, you use this to force his hand to be full and more safely use your BBS, because then it turns into “Draw a card for you and only you”.

Or, your opponent empties their hand, sometimes early when they’re being aggro, sometimes just as a result of playing a long game, and you make it so that replacing cards becomes REALLY difficult.

Once I even Flashed the Sphynx on the first turn, just to see what’d happen. That really messed with the opponent who apparently didn’t have a good turn 2 play and was hoping to replace into one.

Having the opponent give the Riddle back may feel bad if you’re the one who needs to Replace, but you’re playing Starhorn, so you have an advantage almost everyone else doesn’t: using your BBS essentially means you’re getting new card options at half the cost of what your opponent needs to spend when they have a Riddle. So you could actually just hold on to the Riddle until you have some floating mana to spare without feeling as much pressure as the opponent would.

The only time Sphynx becomes a liability is when you’re up against Songhai or one of those people trying to be all clever playing Arcanyst decks. I swear people never play Prismatic Illusionist unless I’m playing Sphynx. What’s up with that?

I wouldn’t call Sphynx “necessary”, I guess. I mean, if people don’t already have him, I wouldn’t push them into crafting it if they don’t have all the other cards they need. But for me, Sphynx adds a layer to the game that I enjoy very much. And giving the opponent TWO Riddles is just pure shenanigans.

Beyond that, is there any reason to use Starhorn over Vaath?

I feel that if I was playing Vaath, I’d run out of cards in hand really quickly. There are too many games that end with a specific combination of cards, so drawing is important. Once, though, because of a combination of removal and Sphynx shenanigans, I was even able to mill out the opponent completely and end a game using my BBS! Although the game did glitch out and ended up being locked into this for five minutes:

(I submitted a bug report for it. I think the game was confused about how to deal mill damage to someone with two Arclyte Regalias.)


Argeon never dies.


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