Scottish Premiership Betting Odds | Football | Oddschecker

Gerrard’s reaction to the Rangers keeper’s sending off after kicking a Hibernian player. I don’t think I’d be brave enough to piss Stevie off. I bet the GK is going to get a hell of a bollocking!

Gerrard’s reaction to the Rangers keeper’s sending off after kicking a Hibernian player. I don’t think I’d be brave enough to piss Stevie off. I bet the GK is going to get a hell of a bollocking! submitted by eurfryn to LiverpoolFC [link] [comments]

After Rangers player Ian Black is revealed to be under investigation for betting on matches, including against his own team, manager Ally McCoist makes bizarre claim that he is aware of hundreds of 'players and football officials' doing the same. Surely this casual claim points at a huge scandal?

submitted by JonnyBhoy to soccer [link] [comments]

Hot take: Martials look worse than casters in your games because you run encounters wrong.

Yah I said it. TLDR at the bottom.
Note - Exaggerating for effect here. No disrespect. Important bit in the second half.
YOUR ENCOUNTERS ARE WRONG.
I bet you do the following, all the while complaining about how weak or not as good martial characters are.
GET GOOD SCRUB BEFORE YOU TELL ME HOW WEAK ASS MARTIALS ARE.
All exaggeration aside I think we suffer from a more nuanced problem with casters and martial characters.
I think there are inherent biases that we DM’s do to enable casters a false sense of supremacy within our games. Which becomes exacerbated online with more cerebral invested players spending time theory crafting cool unique builds and arguing online being more predisposed towards casters anyway. I think this distorts our perceptions. And has allowed a false narrative of Casters and Martial usefulness to become disjointed from reality.
Essentially this boils down to the following points.
TLDR: If you aren’t running Dungeons and Dragons 5e, taking full advantage of the way the game is balanced towards both styles of play. You aren’t doing a real test of whether martial classes and caster classes are unbalanced. If your encounter design is lazy, you don’t use spell component costs, multiple encounters per adventuring day, target the spell casters, provide tactics for enemies to use such as cover, stealth, terrain, and proper targeting you are skewing the game towards casters and not providing a fair analysis of the game.
Getting enjoyment out of playing casters as a dynamic fun class, doesn’t mean others don’t get enjoyment out of a consistent methodical class. And if you aren’t doing the above, than you aren’t getting a proper test of the effectiveness of those classes.
***Edit - Thank you for the discussion. I love you all.
submitted by BoutsofInsanity to dndnext [link] [comments]

Had 50$ left in my FanDuel account back in February was about to come back over the bridge into NY so fired in a quick one.

Had 50$ left in my FanDuel account back in February was about to come back over the bridge into NY so fired in a quick one. submitted by FunJuiceConsumer to rangers [link] [comments]

Rangers player accused of betting against his own team by Scottish FA

Rangers player accused of betting against his own team by Scottish FA submitted by subscribe-by-reddit to DirtyTackle [link] [comments]

All ideas are welcome

This is a reworded and reorganization version of one of my previous post.
So I’m doing a party of 4 level 3 characters. One is a human rogue who was raised my wolffolk. He believe he is cursed to never reveal his true form and hates his “cursed” human body. He is very racist toward humans, and only attacks by throwing weapons or using a bow. He also gets lost very easily, which is how he got separated from his pack, he loves to make maps but he is so bad at drawing that only he can read them. Because he was raised by wolffolk, he doesn’t understand a lot of human things. For example he walks around naked sometimes because he is not use to cloths, he is also new to this idea of getting “happy” when he sees an attractive female, this confuses him because he is racists towards humans.
 We also have an awakened undead wild magic sorcerer, who is on a vengeance quest to kill the cult members who sacrificed his body and turned him into a skeleton. He has extremely high charisma, but that is negated by the fact he is undead and people don’t like that. He doesn’t remember anything from his past life, except the ritual he was sacrificed in. We have another human wild magic sorcerer who doesn’t care about consequences, so he willingly slings his magic around and what ever happens happens( he rolls on a 1d100 table that I created myself). He also has a magic quirk that causes his hair to turn a random color, length, and density after every long rest( I have a table for this, that I created, that he rolls on.) This quirk is just and addition to his regular wild magic abilities, to show how the wildness of his magic manifest in his everyday life, not just when he cast spells. And the last member is an insect humanoid, Ranger, that comes from a distant land. His people where slaughtered and he just wants to survive. His only reason for sticking to the party is that they give him the best chance of survival. I need ideas on how to make this party stay on track without “forcing” them to stay on the story line. Also any fun ideas to throw in and cause inter party drama would be helpful!!!!! I also thought y’all would enjoy the insanity of the characters lol. 
submitted by keaton55555 to DMAcademy [link] [comments]

2020 r/baseball Power Rankings -- Preseason / Week 1: They May Take Half Our Season, But They'll Never Take Our Desire to Rank

Welcome back to baseball Power Rankings, 2020 Edition!

Eight years ago, naaahhman created this project and for the last seven I've shepherded a diligent team of voters, past and present, to bring you the longest running feature of this great subreddit.
If this is your first rodeo, we employ 30 voters taken from each fandom / team subreddit. No one person has more influence than another and my own fandom does not enter the equation.
This 2020 season is a chaotic one, but you will normally see this feature published on Monday between Noon and 2 PM Pacific -- so, we'll meet again next Monday, July 27th.
Every voter has their own style / system and, while there are normally voting rules for guidance and numbers for analysis, this Preseason Vote called for a personal interpretation of what may transpire this season.
Note: Are you a fan of the Phillies or Whitesox? We are seeking new representation for these teams. Please see this comment for details.
Thank you to all voters who have left this project -- your work has been incredibly appreciated.
TRANSPARENCY: this link will show you who voted each team where and has added neat statistics!
If something is a little messed up, just chalk it up to general rustiness but feel free to pester me let me know.
Total Votes: 27 of 28.
The delta change somewhat irrelevantly refers to the last Power Ranking of the 2019 season for funsies.
# Team Δ Comment Record
1 Dodgers +1 It doesn't matter that the seasoned is shortened. It doesn't matter than summer camp was brief. It doesn't matter that the Astros cheated or that we came close. All that matters this season for the Dodgers is winning the whole damn thing. Anything less will be a disappointment. 106-56
2 Yankees +1 Have you been watching preseason baseball? Because I have. I love that our HR leader is Kyle Higashioka and SO leader is Jordan Montgomery. This is going to be the year of AAAA allstars, and boy am I ready. 103-59
3 Astros -2 Bang bang. Now that that's cleared out of the way, let's get to it. Obviously, the Astros lost Gerrit Cole over the offseason, but are still blessed with a solid 1-2 punch in Justin Verlander and Zack Greinke. Lance McCullers Jr. will make his long awaited return from Tommy John surgery, and if he can stay healthy, he should emerge as one of the best #3 starters in the league. Offensively, the team should still be in great shape. All in all, it would be foolish to assume the Astros will compete for anything less than the AL pennant. Even with this offseason's losses, they are still an incredibly powerful team. 107 - 55
4 Twins 0 It's finally time for Twins baseball! The Bomba Squad is a force to be reckoned with this year, with the aquisition of Donaldson, Maeda, Rich Hill, and others to support a deadly offense that is arguably the best in the majors. The bullpen is a bona-fide strength this year with the expressive set-up men Romo and May to support the laser-focused Rogers. With a strong rotation of Berrios, Odorizzi, Maeda, Hill, and Dobnak, look for the Twins to repeat as 2020 AL Central Champions! 101 - 61
5 Rays +2 Quentionable offseason manuvering? Check. COVID hotspot? Check. Warm water? Also check. The Rays come into 2020 with the burden of expectations after last year's playoff appearance, and look poised to make it back. There have been several Rays-ey depth additions with the likes of Manuel Margot, Jose Martinez, and Randy Arozarena, with the headliner of Hunter Renfroe. Yoshi Tsutsugo also joins from the NPB. All of these additions seem to hinge on the hope they reproduce parts of past seasons, but given the FO's track record there's reason to be optimistic. The downside is the departure of arguably last year's best position player in Tommy Pham, and letting Travis d'Arnaud go in free agency in hopes of a Zunino bounceback. Everyone else is back and ready to roll. The most important thing is that the pitching staff remains largely the same, with the only notable loss being Emilio Pagan. The short season combined with Kevin Cash's pitching antics is where the optimism for the season really comes from, with the 1/2/3 of Morton/Snell/Glasnow + one of the top bullpens in baseball. In short, raise those Chois and flap those bois, baseball is back! 96 - 66
6 Braves -1 As fast as it began, our relationship with Yasiel Puig was "licked" by a positive COVID-19 test. Speaking of positive/COVID-19, the best first baseman in baseball has returned from his quarantine and is "feeling great!" We still have a hole to fill against lefties with Kakes opting out of the season. Look for a heavy platoon in the OF for now, but I imagine we revisit Puig if he can have the required 2 negative tests. If not, it might pave the way to the Show for Pache. 97 - 65
7 Nationals +3 The 2019 World Series Champion Washingtion Nationals begin their title defense against Gerrit Cole as the only team to have beaten him in the last calendar year. Expect a high-flying yet low-scoring opening series against the Yankees as the Nationals will hand the baseball to three different pitchers who received 2019 Cy Young votes (Scherzer, Strasburg, and Corbin). 93 - 69
8 Athletics -3 Before the end times, the A's were 1st in the cactus league. Our owner made a rare public statement- a mea cupola, after refusing to pay our minor league players. The local Sierra Club protested the organization's plans to build a new stadium, and they have good points. For a team that needs to win in this contention window to keep the franchise local, the shadow-boxing over the next labor agreement was less than ideal. Across several generations, the A's have been a second half team. Will this lead to a hot streak, or dissapointment? 97 - 65
9 Cardinals 0 THANK GOD Baseball is finally, finally being played again. An abbreviated season, but ball and bat all the same - and that means that in these strange times the only thing that matters is who gets hot and stays hot. I don't have a real guess how this season will go, I'm only glad that it's here. 91 - 71
10 Cubs +2 The Cubs are as perplexing as ever. While the core that won them a World Series in 2016 is still intact, their lack of pitching depth and hitting consistency may once again be the deciding factors for this team. Hopefully Cubs fans will see some redemption for the abysmal collapse last fall. They are one of the few teams with no players testing positive for the coronavirus, but who knows how long that will last. Let's play ball for as long as we can! 84 - 78
11 Mets +2 Will Pete Alonso or Jeff McNeil avoid a Sophmore slump? Will Jacob deGrom contend for a third straight Cy Young? Will Brodie Van Wagenen be able to traverse the Cursed Dungeon of Glamdor to retrieve the fabled glowing amulet to finally lift the curse that has been placed on Jed Lowrie? I'm ready to find out, but I know more than anything, I'm ready to get hurt again. #LFGM 88 - 76
12 Brewers -1 I think Milwaukee had the most transactions of anyone in the offseason, but none of these transactions brought a true impact player. The best thing this team has going for them is positional versitility. More than any other team Milwaukee can navigate losing a key player for multiple weeks in this short season. 89 - 73
13 Indians -5 The Tribe heads into 2020 well-poised for another 100-win 37-win season. The loss of aces Corey Kluber and Trevor Bauer stings, but with a top-three of Bieber, Clevinger and a reportedly healthy Carlos Carrasco, the rotation is in great shape. The bullpen, headed by Brad Hand, Nick Wittgren and preternatural K machine James Karinchak, looks to put up another strong season. The lineup features at least six guys with 30-dinger power and two MVP candidates in Lindor and Ramirez. With no real weak spots and plenty of depth, look for Cleveland to be at the top of the division in a short season. 93 - 69
14 Reds +3 It feels good to be back. Am I confident that the season will (or should) be played to completion? Well now's not the time to talk about that. But am I confident in the team that Dick Williams and co. have assembled? I think so! The Reds have arguably the best top of the rotation in baseball with Gray, Castillo, and Bauer. They also brought in some free agent hitters you may have heard of. The defense could be ugly this year, especially if Nick Castellanos insists he's not a DH. On the whole, this Reds team really feels like they can do great things this year. I'm ready to get let down. 75 - 87
15 Angels +5 I am just glad that there is finally a meme that fully describes how it feels to look upon the start of another season of Angels baseball. 72 - 90
16 D-Backs -1 With 2020 NL MVP Ketel Marte leading the charge, a team of good-to-very-good players across the diamond has a chance to be a serious contender in this shortened season. This is a team with a decent amount of depth and moving parts, one that plays excellent defense and does the little things right--even on the nights the Snakes lose, nobody in the MLB is going to look forward to playing the D-backs. 85 - 77
17 White Sox +5 72 - 89
18 Phillies -2 81 - 81
19 Padres +2 In February, I don’t think I was alone in dying to see the season start. The Pads come into 2020 with a new manager, new faces in town, and of course best of all, big beautiful brown, jerseys. Given current events, and all that’s happened since, I wouldn’t blame anyone for not carrying that same enthusiasm with us to opening day, nor would I blame anyone for being skeptical of a season even finishing. What I can say, is I’m glad we’re back. The club comes in harder to predict than ever. My gut says the 60 game schedule against only west opponents will help, as well as one of the best bullpens in baseball. The infield should back our pitchers up, if their complimenting bats are alive and awake, then we could make some noise this year. The starting staff is still the biggest question mark on the team, as it relies on a young Paddack being consistent, a bounce back year for Richards, and overall health and improvement for the squad. I see the Pads starting slow, and picking up midseason, reaching a final record of 32-28. That would be the first winning season since ‘10, but likely still keep us out of the playoffs, which we haven’t reached since ‘06. 70 - 92
20 Red Sox -6 In a way, the Sox got lucky. This is probably the worst Sox team we'll see in awhile, and we only see 1/3rd of the games from them. They've been devastated by injuries, lost free agents (mookie 😭), and years of horrible front office decisions. Thankfully, we've got Chaim Bloom on our side to save us from the terrible signings and to hopefully build a juggernaut farm akin to the Dodgers and Yankees. Until then though, I'm looking forwards to a low expectation/low stress Red Sox season. 84 - 78
21 Rangers -3 Wear a mask. Wash your hands. As for my rankings, I tried to do my best here. Not sure how these 60 games are going to go but I think the teams with the better pitching might have an advantage but honestly not sure. Fuck the Astros. 78 - 84
22 Blue Jays +3 The 2020 Homeless Blue Jays will be must watch TV, featuring a lineup comprised of young studs Bo Bichette, Vladdy Jr, Cavan Biggio. Hyun-Jin Ryu will take the ball on opening day, and the rotation should feature Fireballing Rookie Nate Pearson by the 2nd week in August. Sure, the government disowned them, and they aren't actually ALLOWED to play in the country, but they're still Canada's team. In a Pandemic Shortened Season, featuring an improved pitching staff, with a fiery young lineup, much of the fan base has to be thinking "Why Not Us?". 67 - 95
23 Rockies +0 After an offseason that included a public war of words between Nolan Arenado and GM Jeff Bridich (and not much else) the Rockies will look to recapture their 2017/2018 magic. Your guess is as good as mine if they can in an abbreviated season. 71 - 91
24 Giants -5 Buster Posey isn't playing because he's a hero. Tyler Beede is recovering from Tommy John surgery. Brandon Belt has a foot injury. Evan Longoria has an oblique injury. Pablo Sandoval is fat again. Heliot Ramos has a leg infection. Billy Hamilton is still working his way back from covid. But at least baseball is back I guess? At least a short season means the Giants will only be bad for 60 games, as opposed to 162. 77 - 85
25 Pirates +1 Bob Nutting didn't sell the team, but the offseason otherwise went about as well as you could hope as a Pirates fan. The front office was wiped clean after a disasterous 2019, and new GM Ben Cherington will be tasked with bringing a winner back to Pittsburgh. He'll be using to 2020 season to sift through the wreckage that was Neal Huntington's 2019 roster, which means the on-field product will still be pretty bad. This year, I'll be looking to see if the pitching staff can take a step forward and if some of the Bucs' top prospects can hack it in limited MLB time. At least with a shortened season, Pirate fans only have to watch Colin Moran take the field for 60 games instead of an interminable 162. 69 - 93
26 Royals +1 Honestly - I don't even know how to rank this season. I'm not even sure the season ends when it's scheduled to. This entire thing seems like a giant clusterfuck. But, on the plus side, Bobby Witt Jr. looks like a future star. Only issue is that he's facing the Royals pitching... 59 - 103
27 Marlins +1 57 - 105
28 Mariners -4 BASEBALL 👏 SHOULD 👏 NOT 👏 BE 👏 PLAYED 👏 THIS 👏 YEAR 👏 68 - 94
29 Tigers +1 Last year was TankforTork, so this year is... GetKreamedforKumar? We might need to work on that one. What I do know is that this will be another painful year, but a year offering some glimmers of hope as Casey Mize and Isaac Paredes figure to challenge for playing time later on (if we actually finish the season). Miguel Cabrera looks as slim as he's ever been in a Tigers uniform (BSOHL!!!) in order to lessen the load on his back and knees as he heads into the twilight of his Hall of Fame career. 47 - 114
30 Orioles -1 The season will be 60 games, the Orioles have the toughest schedule (based on teams records from last year), and the supposed opening day starter already has a sore arm. If you could bet that the Orioles will have more losses than any team will have wins in Vegas...I would take that bet. 54 - 108
submitted by kasutori_Jack to baseball [link] [comments]

[Primer] The Nightmare Hive: A Five-Colour Lurrus Slivers Guide

Humans don’t have it easy in fantasy settings. They tend to be cast either as strictly worse versions of other races in all qualities that actually matter, or they’re just the jacks-of-all-trades lacking both the strengths and weaknesses of the others. In many games, this lack of specialization makes humans boring, and keeps them away from presence in minmaxed munchkin builds, but here? They do have one strength.
Diversity.
A band of humans from all five colours trek across the countryside. The finest specimens that the species has to offer. They come from all walks of life: noble priests, veteran soldiers, pirates with even less respect for you than for your property rights. There’s one chick who makes stuff cost more mana somehow. (Do any of the Innistrad novels explain that?)
All march together for a common purpose: using their combined powers, they must exterminate a hive of interplanar rodents. The slivers have expanded their territory in recent months, terrorizing the farmers whose grain the kingdom relies on. The exterminators are well-equipped, bringing magic found in their faith, strength found in the arrival of their comrades, and giant praying mantises found God-knows-where. Discard, +1/+1 counters, ramp - they have it all. If there’s a need that has to be met, you can bet there’s a human somewhere willing to do it for enough coin. But through it all, these bipedal mammals still have one weakness.
Diversity.
Humans are pack animals, you see, but still individuals. Social ones to be sure, but they also appear determined to love their shortcomings more than their potential greatness, and cringe away from the pinnacle of evolution: the parasocial. Their flesh-brains have come so far, but without an omnipresent psionic link, they’re little more than their unicellular ancestors. Limited to a single life. A single existence. You can dismantle an entire army of them just by breaking down their fragile communications systems. Once that’s done, you can just sit back and watch as disorganization dissolves their ranks and their differences drive them to tear each other apart. This is the eternal flaw of the Self: it implies a lack of perfect union with the Whole.
And as these humans, less of a people than a cobbled-together mass of persons, reach the top of the hill and see the outline of the Hive on the horizon, they will know the failure of their species. They will bear witness to the accomplishments of the Whole and even as they fail to articulate it in words, they will know that the Self is the Flaw.
We have long since mended this Flaw. They sent their finest ones, but the fact that their finest are confined to being ones, with gifts that only apply to singular specimens, is their fatal limit. That is why their final stand against our expansion can only ever be that: a final stand.
---
"bro wtf that was cringe, ur gonna lose karma"
Sorry, I’m a wannabe fantasy writer on Reddit. Get used to awful prose.
Welcome to a primer for my particular brew of 5C Slivers in Modern: the Nightmare Hive. It’s something I’ve been somewhat surprised to not see more Slivers players dabbling in. If you ask me, I think they have an unhealthy attachment to 3-drops. 🤮
I’m going to focus on deckbuilding/card choice and playstyle notes. It’s probably not going to be a ton of new information for experienced players, but it can call attention to some micro. I’ll throw some attention to matchup notes but that’s not what’s as fun for me to write. This is also the first time I’ve ever written an MTG primer. Well, a primer that isn’t for a deck that’s actually just a shitpost made of cardboard. (Ask me about 95-land Vendilion Clique EDH!)
There’s not much I have to say for an introduction or a “Why Slivers?” in general. You guys already know it. Slivers have a certain reputation among casual players for being OP. Maybe this is because they’re the truest embodiment of what a tribal deck is. Slivers sacrifice a lot of individual power in order to maximize group power. But really the reason for this is that building a functional Sliver deck for casual is one of the easiest things in the world. As far as fair decks go, you can get a ton of mileage in terms of effectiveness out of relatively little money spent just by rooting through the foul-smelling dumpster that is your LGS’s bulk commons bin, throwing any slivers you find at some lands and calling it a deck. You also get more insight by comparing them to other creature types like Humans or Elves: plenty of those creature types will show up incidentally in more generalist decks, but the instant an opponent plays their first Sliver, you know exactly what’s going on and you know you should be afraid. Consequently, casual circles often have the one Sliver deck of the friend group whose player loves to be feared and who everyone else loves to fear.
This shifts a lot once one goes into competitive environments. Slivers have clear weaknesses, and in my view, many of the common modern Sliver builds fail to really play to their strengths enough to make up for this. I don’t even know if the deck I’m about to describe to you is any different, but I can attest to this deck having a good matchup against other Sliver decks by virtue of sheer speed. Vroom vroom.
Do keep in mind that while I’m hyping this deck up because it’s mine and I’m proud of it, it’s far from perfect. But you know what it is? Consistent, easy to play and fun as SHIT for smoothbrains like me. HAHA TURN CREATURES SIDEWAYS EVERY TURN, WORLD’S BEST STRATEGY GAME, NOW FREE TO PLAY ON MTGARENA
Alright bois, get ready. Strap in, set aside your existential identity as a Unique and become one with the Hive. Click your talons together when you’re ready and brace yourself for some card choice analysis. Truly the funnest part of Magic, at least if you’re like me and spend hours honing a theoretical build for your D&D character without caring to ever actually play it.
If all you care about is the list, here's the summary by a helpful Goyf.

The 0-Drops:

In this deck, our only 0-drops are lands, and you’re probably familiar with what the best choices already are. Where this gets a tad spicy is in the land count: 18. One of the reasons this deck stands at an advantage against other Sliver decks is precisely from the pseudo card advantage provided by being able to draw fewer lands than our opponent and still have a functional deck. Curving lower than burn out here.
4x Cavern of Souls: Surprising literally nobody with this one. In the Bant snowpile meta that hasn't quite gone away with Astrolabe, your opponent will have plenty of countermagic, and this card will be pulling a lot of weight for getting you on even footing with them.
4x Unclaimed Territory: Discount Cavern. The color-fixing is just this valuable, letting us draw on Slivers from every color to create an optimized horde without stressing about our mana sources.
4x Sliver Hive: Here’s something we have over other tribal decks: Twelve different lands that can all tap for colorless as well as one of any color to spend on our creatures. Sliver Hive has a final ability stapled on, but I legitimately feel that this card would be buffed if that ability was replaced with flavor text. That would improve Slivers as a whole by adding to their aesthetic while also removing an ability that literally never gets used, at least in this build. Requires you to draw a third of the lands in your whole library to use, and if you’ve reached that point, you’ve probably already lost.
0x Ancient Ziggurat: WHAT? Yeah yeah, I know. Here’s the thing: With the above lands doing so much for our mana fixing, and a number of other lands we want, there’s little room for Ancient Ziggurat. Which is a shame, because ziggurat is an awesome word that you should strive to use at least once every day. The inability to be used on noncreature sources matters more often than you’d think, usually in the case of sideboard cards but also for a number of hands in which one would be keeping a single land and an Aether Vial.
“But isn’t it better for Lurrus since it can produce any colour to cast it, unlike Sliver Hive?”
Before the nerf, this was correct. However, now that you have to pay 3 generic mana to put your companion into your hand, a cost that Ancient Ziggurat can’t contribute to, it’s no longer worth it.
In short, Ancient Ziggurat is good, but “good” isn’t good enough for the Hive. We demand more.
3x Mutavault: Unfortunately, playing 4 Mutavaults here is suboptimal. Five-color deck needs its five-color sources, and in a deck with 18 lands, we don’t want more than one-sixth of our lands failing to produce colored mana. A number of creatures in the deck are ones Mutavault can’t be used to pay for even if we want to. That said, the 2/2 body that benefits from all the Sliver buffs is commonly the difference between winning and losing a game. In playtesting I’ve found 3 to be the optimal number, but you wouldn’t be totally insane for playing 2 or 4.
2x Silent Clearing: Apparently 18 lands is sometimes too many. The pain from these is usually insignificant, while the card draw can help us pull a clutch win out of nowhere. This particular horizon land is chosen since out of the ones available, it most lines up with our mana requirements. Shoutout to the times you crack it at EoT, draw a creature you can drop with Aether Vial, untap and swing for lethal because of that new Sliver.
1x Snow-Covered Plains: Yes, this deck is very, very bad against Blood Moon. Good thing the Astrolabe ban makes Ponza worse, right? Blood Moon only gets less common in the meta from here, right guys?
The single Plains is mostly a formality, something to fetch off of opponents’ Paths, Assassin’s Trophies and Fields of Ruin. Why Snow-Covered? Mind games. It might cause your opponent to think you run something that makes the snow quality relevant. In truth, it’s because it adds possible variance in your opponent’s mind that they might account for, at zero mechanical downside. I actually don’t like the fact that snow-covered basics are strictly better than standard basics. I’d like to see a modern-legal Snow hoser that’s good enough to use, making snow lands something to use only if your deck actually cares about them rather than making them the optimal default for every single deck.
So, that’s our manabase. Nothing too surprising or exciting, but had to be done.

The 1-Drops:

AND NOW WE GET TO THE CARDS YOU ACTUALLY CARE ABOUT

AIGHT HERE’S HOW YOU MURDER EVERY SAPIENT BEING YOU ENCOUNTER

One of Slivers’ main weaknesses as a tribe is their one-drops. There aren’t many, and the ones we get aren’t absolutely spectacular. No 1 mana 2/2s with haste or anything. (God can you imagine how OP a 1 mana 2/2 with haste would be?) But they do get the job done, providing the keyword soup that makes this deck favourable against other fair decks. Just to fluff this out and address some bad possibilities people might want to account for, I’ll also be rating every one-drop sliver. I know you’re desperate for my opinion.
4x Aether Vial: When I first got into Magic, I didn’t understand what was so good about Aether Vial. Sure, you can get some cards into play faster, but it also takes up your first turn as well as a card to use. You’re just kneecapping yourself in the long run. What I didn’t understand is that much of the time, there is no long run in Modern. The added speed is worth it, as is the instant timing and the immunity to counterspells. Aether Vial is our only noncreature spell maindeck and we’ll drop it turn 1 if it’s in hand. They’d better counter it then, or the combination of Cavern of Souls and Aether Vial itself will make counters useless. This card is also what lets this deck survive at all against Blood Moon.
0x Metallic Sliver, Plated Sliver: The earliest slivers weren’t that powerful. We’re not missing much from being unable to use these.
0x Mindlash Sliver: I do wish this was somehow playable, but alas, it just wasn’t meant to be. You’re spending mana to 2-for-1ing yourself, unless your hand is empty, but even then this probably isn’t worth it. You don’t want to rip apart hands, you want to rip apart FACES. Doesn’t make the cut. Maybe one day we’ll get a better version of this that’ll be useful against control.
0x Screeching Sliver: If someone manages to make Sliver Mill good, let me know. It’s certainly not viable now given all the Uros and dredge.
4x Sidewinder Sliver: Now we’re talking! Costs 1 white mana, meaning it works with any of our non-Mutavault lands. Flanking essentially makes this a lord for combat only, but there will be places where the fact it gives others a minus instead of your own creatures a plus is relevant: opposing lifelink becomes less powerful, Ice-Fang Coatls die before they get to deal damage, even 1-toughness first strikers die before getting to deal damage. Flanking only works against creatures without flanking, but the only time that’ll come up in Modern is the mirror, and in that matchup this will essentially just be vanilla since it grants the ability to all slivers, not just yours.
0x Virulent Sliver: Maybe in the past you could’ve made the case for this. Maybe you could argue that in some very niche cases like against soul sisters or decks that can continuously pick off your lords, the poison will kill before the damage. Especially if you get multiple of these out. But nowadays our selection of one-drops isn’t quite that terrible, and we don’t have to use this.
4x Galerider Sliver: The best one-drop Sliver in most cases. Little to say, makes them unblockable to most creatures. Being able to block enemy fliers sometimes matters, but usually your playstyle is just HAHA TURN CREATURES SIDEWAYS, MAGIC IS THE WORLD’S BEST STRATEGY CARD GAME. If your opening hand has multiple one-drop slivers, you might want to drop one of the other one-drops first in order to bait the removal on that one. To use Sidewinder Sliver as a point of comparison: making your opponent’s blocking choices less optimal isn’t as good as taking away their option of blocking at all.
4x Striking Sliver: Now this is interesting. Most Sliver decks I’ve seen run 2 of both this and Sidewinder, but since this deck is meant to be faster and more aggressive, we want 4 of both. Especially since both of them are equally good against one-toughness blockers like Snapcaster Mage or Ice-Fang Coatl. Let’s compare them for interest’s sake. First Strike works on both attacks and blocks, unlike flanking, and you can Aether Vial the Striking Sliver in as a combat trick after blocks. Can’t do that with Sidewinder since flanking is a triggered ability. By contrast, Sidewinder Sliver is easier to cast given our mana base, works better as a combat trick in more cases (a 2/2 sliver with first strike blocked by a 2/2 successfully turns a trade into a win, while being blocked by a 3/3 fails to turn a loss into a trade; flanking succeeds for both) and as the slight nudge into superiority for me, flanking stacks. Also importantly, many of your opponents will not know that flanking stacks until after you inform them of this once they’ve already formally declared blockers. For me, flanking stacking makes it more valuable to get multiple Sidewinder Slivers as opposed to multiple Striking Slivers, and in most matchups if I’m boarding out 1-drops, I’ll start taking out copies of Striking before Sidewinder. Exceptions do exist: against 8-ball you will be very thankful for your 1/1 first striker that totally negates their single-toughness attackers.
Well I guess that’s all of them. Time to move on to-
>OBJECTION!<
2x Changeling Outcast?!: That’s right folks, you heard it here first. We’re this aggressive. We’re committing so hard to our lord and savior The Fast that we’re throwing in a couple of 1-mana unblockable changelings who will benefit from all pumps given to slivers. The fact they can’t block is hardly ever relevant in a deck that intends to do no blocking, and the unblockable clause makes this a clock that gets surprisingly fast once you have a couple of the two-drops down. Costing black mana means there’s only four lands in the deck that can’t cast it, making it a reliable first-turn play if you really have nothing else to put down, and they’ll let you win through a number of board stalemates. All of that said, these will usually be your first cuts when it comes to sideboarding. Not that they’re bad, just that everything else is better - these are essentially flex slots. Try them, and if you find them underwhelming, I have other suggestions in their stead for the two-drops. Do note, however, that this can make your curve a bit too high to be truly speedy.

The 2-Drops:

The reason this build works, and arguably the reason the whole tribe works, is that Slivers have such an abundance of 2-mana lords. (Basically, if you wish Rat Colony.dec was a good deck, play this. That's why I do.) They wind up buffing each other and creating monstrous attack phases in a short number of turns. The consistency is phenomenal since they’re all so interchangeable and redundant. Not all of them are created equal, but all of them will nonetheless serve you well in ripping people’s midsections open.
4x Unsettled Mariner: This time we’ll just get the one changeling out of the way upfront: this guy is good. 2 mana 2/2 makes it a reasonable rate for a body, and you can drop it early in place of a lord without actually losing much damage. Many opponents will be tunnel visioned on killing this in order to free up mana, which will also take up their removal that should have been saved for killing lords. It makes life noticeably harder for burn, 8rack, Jund as long as they have to let it live, and so on. An excellent addition to the deck from Modern Horizons, instant 4-of. Be sure not to forget that it doesn’t just prevent the spellcasting, but counters it as a triggered ability, so you won’t just have to correct your opponent that they’re unable to cast their spell given the mana they have like with Thalia - their spell is directly countered if they screw up. Also remember that the counter applies to spells that target your nonsliver permanents, such as land destruction, as well as to you! Delaying Cryptic Command for a turn is super helpful in the control matchup. Lastly, it applies to abilities as well. Planeswalker abilities, Fields of Ruin, Thought-Knot Seer ETB trigger, even Gifts Ungiven, all of it has to have extra mana paid or it does nothing.
0x Clot, Heart, Muscle, Talon, Winged, Acidic, Crystalline, Hibernation, Victual, Crypt, Hunter, Mistform, Quick Sliver: None of them are modern legal. The most unfortunate loss is Crystalline Sliver, which could be out here giving all of them shroud and thus making removal totally pointless. At least Unsettled Mariner does an acceptable impression.
0x Gemhide Sliver: WHAT DO WE NEED THIS MUCH MANA FOR? GET OUTTA HERE GREEN BOY
0x Ghostflame Sliver: WHAT DO WE NEED TO BE COLORLESS FOR? GET OUTTA HERE COLORLESS BOY (might be fun tech against all is dust or ugin, but by that point you’ve already lost)
0x Quilled Sliver: WHY IS THIS SLIVER UNTAPPED?! YOU’RE FIRED!
0x Spined Sliver: This is an interesting one to me, and I’ve come very close to running it. The 2/2 body makes it attractive, as does the ability acting similar to flanking. Two things contribute to it not being worth running: the fact that at the end of the day its ability is a worse flanking, and the fact that casting it is too awkward for the utility we get out of it. We need either Vial or two lands that can tap for any colour to get Spined Sliver out, and while we actually do meet that criteria the majority of the time, the minority is large enough to be worthy of consideration.
0x Spinneret Sliver: WHY ARE YOU TRYING TO BLOCK?! GET OUTTA HERE SPIDER SLIVER. ALSO WE ALREADY GET ACTUAL FLYING FROM GALERIDER SO WHO NEEDS YOU
0x Two-Headed Sliver: It sometimes gets close to kinda viable-ish, but the fact it’s a 2 mana 1/1 that doesn’t pump itself as well as the fact that we already have several flying sources and a few unblockables in here means that this ability is very often pointless. You will feel the pain when it’s absent, and you’re unlikely to notice the pain of it being present and wishing it was something else, but trust me - the damage is there even if you don’t feel it. It’s not good enough for the main deck, and the sideboard has much more important circumstances to concern itself with than whether or not menace would be good in this matchup. We already run over most other go-wide decks, and are unlikely to lose due to a lack of menace.
0x Cautery Sliver: You just get so much more out of any given sliver from its quality of improving other slivers than you get from sacrificing them to ping stuff.
0x Darkheart Sliver: I legitimately believe this one can be viable. If you’re in a particularly aggressive meta, you can pull wins out of the extra life from this. Against burn, each sliver can directly cancel out a burn spell. Against Jund, you can respond to all removal spells by gaining some extra life. Sac everything in response to a boardwipe to buy time for your recovery, including dodging the exile clause on Anger of the Gods. Chump and sac before damage if you manage to be losing for some reason. There was a time when I ran a single one mainboard as a better game 1 against burn decks, and I wouldn’t fault you for running it as a one-of, though I now consider the loss of consistency for doing so to be a bit too much. Especially since Unsettled Mariner is already a card that makes it more awkward for your opponents to remove your slivers, you already have some protection from this angle.
4x Sinew Sliver: And now we’re off to the races! Drop it turn 2, cast it with an extremely easy mana cost for this deck, Aether Vial it in before damage to screw over opponents’ blocking decisions, pump your Mutavault, save creatures from damage spells. Sinew Sliver puts in a ton of work, and is easily one of the best cards in the deck. PUT IT DOWN, MAKE ALL YOUR SLIVERS RIPPED, TURN YOUR CREATURES SIDEWAYS, YOU CANNOT LOSE.*
\you can sometimes lose)
4x Frenzy Sliver: I don’t like Frenzy Sliver. I just don’t. It’s a 2-mana 1/1 that only adds power and only for unblocked creatures. Can’t even Aether Vial it in after blockers are declared. Sinew Sliver sparks joy. Frenzy Sliver does not spark joy. However, it’s very easy for this deck to cast and it comes close enough to being a lord for this highly aggressive list that it makes the cut as a 4-of. If you’re considering cutting two-drops for your sideboard cards, these will be among the first to go, unless your opponent plays so few targeted spells and abilities that Unsettled Mariner isn’t worth it.
0x Manaweft Sliver: WHAT DO WE NEED THIS MUCH MANA FOR? GET OUTTA HERE GREEN BOY
4x Predatory Sliver: Yes… YEEEEEESSSSS! One-sided Sinew Sliver STRONK! Costs green instead of white, but being one-sided matters more often than you think, and not just for the mirror. Sinew Sliver will also be buffing opposing Mutavaults and Unsettled Mariners. Predatory Sliver is consistently a house against decks of all kinds, being cast turn 2 or being dropped by Aether Vial at instant speed to wreak havoc on opponents. Many question why one would even play Slivers when options like Merfolk and Goblins are available, and the answer is that we’ve already touched on 12 different damage-boosting 2-drop slivers, and we’re not even done!
0x Sentinel Sliver: Similar to Darkheart Sliver, I used to run this as a one-of and I’m quite convinced it’s viable depending on meta. Easy to cast, 2/2 body, and without being able to use the 3-mana lifelink sliver, this does a lifegain impression by allowing us to threaten blocks where we couldn’t before. That said, its benefit is situational and its presence raises our curve as well as potentially the need for more lands. I leave it out, but you wouldn’t be insane for including one if you have an aggressive creature-based meta.
0x Diffusion Sliver: Other Slivers players will maul me for this choice, but it comes back to how aggressive this deck wants to be. 2 mana 1/1s really need to earn their place, and this doesn’t quite do it, especially with Unsettled Mariner already present in the deck. Diffusion Sliver is an absolute house in more midrangey or ramp-focused sliver builds to protect the big boys, but this list doesn’t lean so heavily on any individual component, and it would typically rather draw another lord than a diffusion sliver. Especially when it’s already late game or when it’s trying to recover from a wiped board. So what I’m getting at is something you probably already knew: defense is for wimps.
4x Leeching Sliver: This is a better version of Frenzy Sliver. It still has many of the same problems, but the advantages of life loss as opposed to a damage boost are crucial: the life loss bypasses effects like Worship, isn’t prevented by Fogs, still applies even if the attacking creature is blocked, and the triggers can finish off a nearly-dead opponent even if they have enough creatures to block everything. 16 2-mana lords. This is why you play slivers.
0x Venom Sliver: This can work as a one-of if the stars align and you have an extremely weird meta full of big creatures that aren’t Uro and Kroxa. But in most metas the deathtouch just isn’t going to be useful enough. Your creatures should get big enough to kill with combat damage, and you’d rather have a lord instead of this to boost said combat damage.
0x Bladeback Sliver: Slivers that are tapping to deal direct damage aren’t benefiting from the 16 lords. We don't like your type 'round these parts.
4x Cloudshredder Sliver: Oh-HOOOOH, this thing is spicy. This absolute MADMAN acts as Galeriders 5-8 for much more consistent evasion, as well as haste. This is the quality it takes to let a 2-mana 1/1 that doesn’t pump itself be viable, and it earns its place unquestioningly. Seriously, this allows for absolutely ridiculous plays. Turn 1 Aether Vial, turn 2 Cloudshredder Sliver, Vial in Sidewinder Sliver and swing for 2, turn 3 Striking Sliver, Predatory Sliver, Vial in another Predatory Sliver, swing for 15, flying, flanking, first strike. There are many decks that just cannot handle this pressure, especially if they’ve already shocked themselves. If they Anger of the Gods now, they’ll still be low enough for you to rebuild and kill with a second wave later.
0x Dregscape Sliver: This may or may not be the correct choice. It’s what I’m currently using due to trying to avoid the unearth being a nonbo with a certain nightmare cat. No question that these are good, and might actually warrant a place here, but this specific build performs just fine without them. Like the other 0-but-viable slivers, you can play around with cutting the Changeling Outcasts for a couple copies if you wish.
0x Enduring Sliver: WHY AREN’T YOU ATTACKING? GET OUT OF HERE ABZAN SLIVER

The 3-Drops:

Why would anyone in their right mind play 3-drops in a non-ramp deck? This is modern. Format's too fast and degenerate for that, bucko.
With one exception.

Lurrus of the Dream-Den

The benefit for the restriction, besides the lower land count. We all know how awesome Lurrus is. Format-breaking monster.
“But u/Yaldev, companions got nerfed!”
You call that a nerf?! Now we can pay 3 mana, the same as its normal cost, but now it’s colorless, and then put it into play at instant speed and uncounterably with Aether Vial! Combined with the fact that the hardest abusers of Lurrus are now considerably less able to abuse it themselves, while it actually got better for us specifically, and I think there’s never been a better time to play this deck!
If you do feel like casting Lurrus from hand, it costs 1 colourless and two hybrid black/white, so even our non-5C lands can contribute to casting it. Also keep in mind that it’s totally viable to play your “name a creature type” lands and name Nightmare for the sake of being able to cast Lurrus, AND keep in mind that those lands will still be able to be used to pay for your changelings since they also count as Nightmare Cats. Fun!
Lurrus is such a boon for this deck, despite not being a sliver. It has lifelink, working well against burn and prowess. It lets you come back from a number of different boardwipes. It frees up the space that would have been taken up by Dregscape Sliver to instead get other utility and one-mana spells while still having access to reanimation. You can recur your sideboard cards if they get destroyed. This card is just so GOOD and I can’t believe that other Slivers players are so delusional that they think it’s worth it to trade off Lurrus for cards that cost THREE mana!
But what about Collected Company?
Collected Company is indeed one of the best arguments against a Lurrus build, but there are a few details I want to call attention to, one of which is the impact of both the mana cost and the coloured requirement. Including Collected Company demands a retooling of the mana base, reducing consistency in exchange for potential pop-offs that have a ceiling that feels good to pull off, but is typically overkill.
The other issue is one that doesn’t have as much attention paid to it: it increases how many noncreature spells you’re running. Despite the bans, we’re likely still looking at a meta with a dominant snow-pile control feel. A deck with enough Dovin’s Vetos and Force of Negations to spare. By making these cards practically useless by sticking to almost entirely creature spells, we deprive our opponent of resources.
All of that said, you actually could still play around with including Collected Company as well as Lurrus. Remember, Lurrus’s restriction only applies to permanents, not to instants and sorceries. It’ll just require retooling your mana base a bit, probably including another land or two and dropping some of the any-colour producers in favour of green lands, Silent Clearings go out for Horizon Canopies, and it makes you more vulnerable to Grafdigger’s Cage, a card that opponents will already be boarding in against you if they have it in order to deal with Lurrus. You also won’t get maximum value since you have no 3 drops to get. This is essentially 4 mana for 4 mana at most.
Slivers isn’t a solved archetype. Feel free to be a scientist, do your own experiments, add to collective knowledge of the Slivers Player Hivemind.

Sideboard:

For this sideboard, I’ve opted towards going hard against specific decks rather than having few cards for everything. This is in part out of necessity, since our options for diversifying legitimately are limited: the Slivers that are worth including in sideboards are 3+ mana, and that leaves only colourless spells that cost 2 or less. We can’t go wide, so we have to go deep.
4x Chalice of the Void: BEHOLD THE FUNSLAYER. Chalice on 1 is your answer to all the decks you already know are reliant on 1 drops, including but not limited to:
To account for this, you’ll typically be boarding out some 1-drops to account for strong likelihood of them being uncastable, though even then, there’s still a good chance you’ll get to use them anyway. Aether Vial turn 1 will let you get them in without casting, while Cavern of Souls will make your 1-drops uncounterable by Chalice.
Also keep in mind the super spicy Chalice on 0, which makes life difficult for UR Free Spells, Cascade, any cheesy strats trying to be Cheerios in 2020, Prime Time (NO PACT 4 U), and once again, Ad Nauseam. 0 stops them from casting Lotus Bloom from exile!
Overall, I think Chalice is the deck’s best sideboard weapon. Do not run less than 4. It’s too valuable.
4x Dismember: Sometimes there are creatures you genuinely have to worry about. Stoneforge Mystic fetched Batterskull and you can’t handle it being played on turn 3. Goyf needs to die before it gets massive. Against other tribal decks, taking out a key lord can be more valuable than yet another 1-drop sliver on your own side. 4 life is a lot to pay, but often this card will save you more than 4 life, or prevent more than 4 life gained for your opponent, or just secure a win that could have otherwise been thrown into question. Also keep in mind that because your Silent Clearings tap for black, they can contribute to the Phyrexian mana cost to save a teensy bit of life.
4x Soul-Guide Lantern: This can easily be substituted for Tormod’s Crypt if that’s your preference. I just like the Lantern for the ETB exile so that it doesn’t have to be cracked as early just to get rid of a single problematic card in a graveyard. In any case, this answers dredge, Uro, Jund and so forth. Can also be sacced to draw if you simply must win the game before your opponent’s next turn and desperately need to hit something to secure that. As a bonus, it can be recurred with Lurrus as both repeatable grave hate and card draw.
1x Damping Sphere: In all likelihood you’ll want 2 of these if Tron has relevant presence in your meta, but for my own deck I prefer to keep it to 1. Nothing special here, it hits all the same stuff you’d expect, such as Tron, Storm and Prowess. The annoying thing about it is that you also happen to be one of the decks that wants to put out several spells per turn, meaning that Damping Sphere will be slowing you down as well.
1x Torpor Orb: In all likelihood you’d rather drop this to double up on Damping Spheres, but I find that in longer games, you’ll get a ridiculous amount of mileage out of this bad boy. Your deck has exactly zero ETB triggers, so you’ll miss out on nothing, while simultaneously gimping Snapcaster Mages, Ice-Fang Coatls, Soul Sisters, Squadron Hawks, Rangers and Ranger-Captains of Eos, Seasoned Pyromancers, Silvergill Adepts, Harbingers of the Tides, Merfolk Tricksters, Thassa’s Oracle, Champions of the Parish, Thalia’s Lieutenants, Detention Mages, Freebooters, Thought-Knot Seers, those god-awful “turn your lands into artifacts and then Reclamation Sage them” decks, and need I even mention blink strats?

Piloting the Deck:

BRRRRRRRRBRBRBRRRRRRBBPLTHPBLBWRBPWBLGPTH
VRRRRRRRRROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMM
In many games, this deck plays out in quite similar ways: Turn 1 sliver, turn 2 lord and swing, turn 3 another lord and swing with second mainphase one drop, turn 4 play 2 more lords and kill. May take an extra turn or two depending on their removal and how painful their manabase is. Seriously, it’s impressively fast, while also being impressively consistent.
Because the creature spells in your library curve out at 2, you’re perfectly fine with keeping a hand consisting of a single land and an Aether Vial. You can leave the Vial at 2 charge counters for the whole game, and even if by some freak of probability you never draw a second land, you can cast your 1-drops with the single land. At the same time, drawing more than one Aether Vial isn’t redundant for you, since there are a number of times when you’ll want to tick a 2-counter vial up to 3 for the sake of dropping Lurrus.
Note that in most games, Lurrus won’t even come out. Deck is 3FAST. It’s more of a possibly-turn-losses-into-wins sort of card. In games you were going to win anyway, it’s rarely necessary.
Deck’s fun. Sometimes you do actually have to think about the attacks you’re making. Sometimes you have to play around your opponent’s open mana meaning they very likely have something to pick off a lord. That can impact whether you’re still willing to attack with your 3/3 that’ll be brought down to a 2/2 into their blocker. Sometimes you have multiple lords in hand and you play the weaker one first to bait removal. I can’t realistically cover every situation, but I can offer some general advice:

Matchup Notes

This primer's already approaching the character cap for reddit, so here's a separate document for any hotties who've made it this far.

Conclusion (ft. Shameless Self-Plug)

Thanks for reading this, ModernMagic lurkers! Apart from wanting to give back to all the primer writers who've helped me smash face in Magic and other games through the years, I wrote this in order to get my writing in front of people's beautiful faces. If you like my style, feel free to check out my fantasy/sci-fi writing project at Yaldev. It's got weaponized cyborgs, undead dinosaurs, sentient paper airplanes, Horse Meat, lots of pretty art, and if you're a Vorthos flavour-geek you'll definitely be seeing how MTG influences the worldbuilding. Hopefully that's a good thing.
Feel free to post comments and discussion, I should be around to provide responses of questionable value.
submitted by Yaldev to ModernMagic [link] [comments]

Evasion Team Guide (with video)

Video Version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7L8iCM72IJQ

Watch some if it if you have the time, it took me over the course of 3 days to make, so appreciate any smashing of like buttons for support!

With Vinera now available in the global version of the game, it's the perfect time to dig into evade team compositions.
Personally, the evade composition is my favorite setup. It’s gimmicky, but so much fun when it works. It is definitely not a build that has a 100% win rate as it has very specific weaknesses that hard counter it.
As with all recommendations, the below are simply recommendations. You should play the game how you want to play.

UNITS:

Pros:
Cons:
The evasion stat is the result of combining the Luck stat and Agility stat. In gross oversimplification, the higher your unit’s luck and agility stats, the more likely they’ll be able to dodge an attack.
So it’s not surprising to see some of the best evade units have naturally high luck and agility, whether as part of their natural stat growth through leveling up, as part of their ability board, or both. Better yet, they have some kind of base evasion stat built in, whether through passive skills or master abilities.
There are three core units I'll be focusing on:
Shadowlynx Kitone Vinera
High agility at 64 (base + ability board), which is good for 5th best out of all units currently available in the global version of the game Even higher agility at 69, which is the highest among all units currently available on global Highest base evade rate of all available units
Fairly high luck at 201, not the best, 8th to be exact, however… High luck at 211, good for 4th highest High agility at 62 and massive luck at 233
Has multiple evasion boosting abilities baked into her unit, including +15 evasion in her master ability plus two support passives that play directly into evasion: Shadow Runner, which raises both luck and agility, and Blade Soul, which directly increases evasion rate Also comes with various evasion boosting abilities, including a +15 evasion boost from her master ability and the Shadow Runner passive Has evade boosting abilities in her master ability, support passives in Thief Lore and Tune-up that both increase agility, plus a generic evade up passive
There are also additional units to consider beyond the core three above...
Wild Cards:
But for Lynx, Kitone, and Vinera... they're the top three in terms of base evasion rate out of all units available on global, without even considering skills, equipment, espers, and vision cards. But once decked out, they’re even crazier.

BUILDING THE UNIT: SKILLS & EQUIPMENT

As a very general rule of thumb, to get the highest evasion, you want to make sure you squeeze in as much luck and agility as possible. This is why the Shadow Runner passive is so good, since that one passive raises both those stats.
Shadowlynx Kitone Vinera
Support Passives Shadow Runner, Blade Soul Shadow Runner, Self-Sacrifice Tune-Up, Evade Up or AP Up
Subjob Samurai Soldier (or Ninja if Doton is needed) Thief (or Dual Gunner if missile damage is needed)
Reaction Ability Third Eye Counter Slash Dark Shadow
Finer details on skills:
While Vinera doesn’t have a passive skill that boosts luck, but she does have two that boost agility. Thief Lore and Tune-up. Tune-Up is the must-have since it destroys enemy unit defenses, allowing Vinera to be a real tank buster.
Lynx should have Blade Soul which automatically adds to her evasion rate and boosts her attack. Both really nice to have. Similarly, Kitone’s last passive can be Self-Sacrifice, which drastically increases her attack.
But what about Shukuchi? Both Lynx and Kitone already have high base movement being ninja job classes, so they generally already outpace most enemy units (4 move and 3 jump as opposed to most units having 3 move and 1 jump). It’s helpful for getting around a map, but at the cost of damage? I personally wouldn’t go for it.
As for Vinera, the last passive is a bit of a toss-up. The first is to continue going all-in with evasion and simply taking the Evade Up passive. The second is to assist in offensive capabilities, which will be AP Up, considering Vinera’s lack of efficient TP skills. Now if you’re fortunate enough to have Xiza’s Illusory Bell TMR, then you won’t need the extra AP help and can just take the evasion boost.
For subjobs, let’s get the easy one out of the way, which is Lynx’s. Samurai. Illusion. Done.
For Kitone, there’s debate between two: ninja and soldier. Ninja is good as it gives access to the non-weapon type damaging skill Doton. But other than that, there’s not too much else going on for it. I personally much prefer soldier as it gives access to much harder hitting skills in Hard Slash and Hazard Spin, both of which are capable of 1-shotting the ever popular Cid. However, the best skill in the kit is Drain Force, which scales off your HP and goes right through any resistances enemies may have. It’s a great way to cut through tanks in addition to restoring any lost HP.
Why not time mage? Well, because she kind of sucks at being one. There’s potential utility in it in a different team composition, but not in an evade one where every party member is already fast.
And for Vinera, the thief subjob would be the traditional option as it grants very useful skills that complement evasion, such as Shadowcast and Steal Time, all of which are TP skills which help build that much needed AP. And shoutout to Snipe Dagger, which is also a fantastic skill to have.
The final piece is reaction abilities. I’m not going to really spend much time on this, because fun fact, if you don’t get hit, you don’t trigger any reaction abilities.
Third Eye for Lynx. Counter Slash for Kitone. Dark Shadow for Vinera.
Equipment:
Two words: Sage’s Hat. It’s the best because the dodge version caps out at 19 raw evasion boosting stats. And to add on top of that, there’s another +8 as part of the item’s attributes for getting up to +5. That said, they are hard to make, so if you don’t have them or have the patience to go the distance, you can sub them out with the rare Wizard’s Hat. Circlet’s an option too, but the jump in materials needed from Wizard’s Hat to Circlet is pretty up there. You may as well have farmed your Sage’s Hat instead.
Wizard's Hat vs Circlet vs Sage's Hat (dodge version +5, level 50)
Wizard's Hat (R) Circlet (SR) Sage's Hat (MR)
Max Evade Stat 12 15 19
Evade Attribute Bonus 6 7 8
Base materials cost 740 Murky Fluid 630 Murky Fluid, 1,810 Sticky Fluid, 1 Void Cyst 2,570 Velvety Fluid, 315 Ogre Bristle, 323 Void Cyst
Awakening books cost 345 735 1,125
The hat is the core piece of equipment in the evade build. What’s left is the weapon and TMR slots and those are much more flexible. There are plenty of options out there so for these recommendations I’ll just give them my personal preferences.
Shadowlynx Kitone Vinera
Hat/Clothes Sage's Hat (dodge) Sage's Hat (dodge) Sage's Hat (dodge)
Weapon/Accessory Ninja Blade (assault) or Alexandrite Ring (aim) Ninja Blade (assault) or Alexandrite Ring (aim) Mage Masher (assault)
Trust Master Shadow Ninja Blade (Lynx TMR) or agility boosting TMR Shadow Ninja Blade (Lynx TMR) or agility boosting TMR Illusory Bells (Xiza TMR) or agility boosting TMR
Finer details on equipment:
Rationale for Kitone using Lynx's TMR. The reason being is that I have Kitone’s faith up to max, at 97, due to her limit burst and Shadowbind’s stop effect. Higher faith means higher chance that the effect will trigger. So with Lynx’s TMR, Kitone can also inflict paralysis on enemies with her basic attack. That leaves one more equipment slot to play with, which will be an accessory. Hermes Sandals for the extra agility is a nice to have, though Lynx’s TMR already provides some modest agility (+4). Since on global the equipment stats don’t stack, there’s not too much value in having Hermes here, as both the valuable dodge and agility stats are more or less covered elsewhere. So I like an aim Alexandrite Ring here, for its high accuracy and elemental resistances. Crit won’t work as Lynx’s TMR already has a whopping 13 there.
But if you opt to not use Lynx’s TMR and go for a more standard ninja blade (e.g. Kodachi or Sasuke's Katana), then that frees up the TMR slot for a different accessory. Now this can be totally up to you. Mont’s Lion Emblem to buff everyone’s agility is nice. Xiza’s Illusory Bells are always amazing, though like I mentioned before they might suit Vinera better.
For Lynx, being a ninja herself, her equipment slots can mirror Kitone’s. You can literally try to equip her the same way. A traditional ninja blade, hat, and any useful TMR you have laying around. You can give Lynx her own TMR as she can also be built with high faith to inflict status ailments… she does also have Shadowbind and her samurai subjob gives her Nightveil, which can inflict AOE blind.
Lastly for Vinera, I would go for Mage Masher as the main weapon, rather than a dodge Main Gauche. While the latter is very interesting with its max 20 evade stat, it doesn’t provide additional evasion as part of the item’s main attribute, unlike the hats. Also you’re giving up plenty of attack, so let the weapon do what weapons do best, which is provide damage. TMR is flexible if you don’t have Xiza’s Illusory Bells. I would consider something with agility as out of the three units on the team, she is technically the slowest.

Espers and Vision Cards

ESPERS:
There are three main espers that are just really neat to have equipped in this setup and some secondary ones that can be good options.
Odin Behemoth Tetra Sylphid
Top 5 attack stat, attack bonus and slash bonus in skill tree Top 5 attack stat, attack and slash attack bonus Mediocre attack, but...
Highest agility among espers, 4th highest luck 3rd highest luck among espers, top 5 for agility 4th highest agility among espers
BIG, BIG MAN EATER Light killer and resistance worth a look More than DOUBLE the evasion granted in the skill tree vs other espers
Now not everyone has access to both Odin and Tetra Sylphid, so there are definitely viable alternatives to consider:
Golem: notable points include having access to man eater in its skill tree, along with defense boosts, high base attack, and massive HP. That HP can come in handy for a Drain Force user like Kitone. Its downside is low agility.
Cactuar: main selling point is access to man eater and the highest base luck in the game of all espers, with 66. But it doesn’t have evasion in its skill tree and it has the lowest base attack stat and the third lowest agility of all espers. It’s an SR for good reason.
VISION CARDS:
For Vision Cards, there isn’t a whole lot of flexibility, and the main reason why the evasion comp is expensive. VCs are categorized into there priorities: +party evasion, +party luck, and +party agility.
+EVADE
The main vision that’s needed is Shiva. This UR card provides a party-wide evasion increase, up to 20 when maxed out. The downside is that the VC is primarily magic based, which neither Kitone, Vinera, nor Lynx are built on. Hence why I mentioned Ramza and Mediena earlier. They can hold the Shiva card while the other traditional attackers can focus on others.
Max HP Max ATK Max MAG Unit Effect Party Effect
MAIN: Shiva 330 18 170 0*: +3% ice resist; 4*: +10% ice resist 0*: +8% evasion; 4*: +20% evasion
ALT: Untrue Pledge, True Soul (unreleased on global) 264 82 75 0*: +5% slash attack; 4*: +15% slash attack 0*: +4% evasion; 4*: +10% evasion

+LUCK
Max HP Max ATK Max MAG Unit Effect Party Effect
MAIN: Secrets of the Heart 292 168 132 0*: +3% earth attack; 4*: +10% earth attack 0*: +18% luck; 4*: +35% luck
ALT: Birth of New Life 461 32 29 0*: +3% HP; 4*: +8% HP 0*: +10% luck; 4*: +21% luck

+AGI or other party-wide relevant stat
The last vision card is more flexible than the previous two, but ideally you’d want something that can increase agility for more evasion. For agility, there’s nothing better than the limited Scion of House Beoulve. Not many people have this option, especially one that’s awakened and leveled.
If you can’t go the agility route, you can opt for more damage. In a slasher party, you can decide between Echoing Screams or Secret Orders. The former grants more raw power, while the latter is much easier to max out, and also grants the user a pretty hefty agility boost.
Max HP Max ATK Max MAG Unit Effect Party Effect
MAIN: Scion of House Beoulve 162 144 90 0*: +3% slash attack; 4*: +10% slash attack 0*: +4% agility; 4*: +15% agility
ALT 1: Echoing Screams 346 169 10 0*: +8% ATK debuff res; 4*: +25% ATK debuff res 0*: +18% slash attack; 4*: +35% slash attack
ALT 2: Secret Orders 230 105 91 0*: +5% agility, -5 spirit; 4*: +10% agility, -5 spirit 0*: +12% slash attack; 4*: +20% slash attack

Wrapping Up

The awesome thing about the evade comp is that it’s able to go against pretty much any team. Physical slashers, magic users, turtlers… it just has one weakness. Teams with guaranteed hit capabilities, namely Sharpshooters and Holy users.
By default, Sharpshooters are currently limited to gunners, so Frederika and Lu’Cia. The latter is your worst enemy, as Lu’Cia, being wind element, completely demolishes Kitone. Lu’Cia isn’t just capable of hitting Kitone with Sharpshoot, she’s capable of 1-shotting her twice over in one hit, essentially turning the match into a 2v3 in the opening rounds before it becomes 1v3 as she’s equally capable of 1-shotting Shadowlynx. And speaking of Lynx, with her low HP, she can also be 1-shot by Frederika’s Sharpshoot.
As for Holy, you’re less likely to have issues with this in AI-led battles as AI controlled white mages will not be smart enough to prioritize casting Holy on your units than spending time buffing and healing teammates. But in player controlled matches, you can bet the enemy Ayaka or Salire will take any opportunity to clean house.
There are other units that carry guaranteed hit options. Ramza’s limit burst is guarantee hit. In the near future, the earth mage Kilfe has more than one ability that can guarantee hit. So keep an eye out.
That said, there are far more units that don’t have guarantee hit abilities than those that do, so the odds are in your favor. Slashers are still the most prominent team compositions and will continue to be the case for quite some time. Even if more players opt to use magic setups, not everyone will carry Holy users. And if you’re focused on arenas and guild battles, it’s a matter of scouting ahead to check if you may be going against a team with Sharpshooters.
Are evade units the strongest? No, not in the slightest. But in a game built around RNG and chance, it’s quite satisfying to be able to manipulate that in some way and that’s where building and optimizing an evade team comes in.

Hope this guide has been helpful! If there's a tl;dr, then have yourself a tl;siw (too long, so I watched) instead in video form: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7L8iCM72IJQ
submitted by JHofNYC to wotv_ffbe [link] [comments]

They said, "It's what my character would do." So mine did what he would do.

Well, I said a fun goodbye to DnD group I was in.
-----
Backstory:
Early this year I joined an already-in-progress campaign run by a DM I'd played under before because I was feeling that itch after not having played for years.
The party (all lvl 15): Druid (me) + Companion, Ranger (Range Specialized), Wizard, Fighter, Cleric
Wizard was one of those ones that will do stuff that harms party, such as using burning hands on enemy that's in melee with party member (and hitting member as well), or using lightning on enemy while most of party is standing knee deep in water fighting them, and justify his actions with "It's what my character would do." I didn't know this going in.
However, in the very first combat I had after joining the group I came to learn this as the Wizard threw a fireball down on the enemy my companion and I were fighting. After combat ends, I express anger to Wizard and they just kept saying, "Aiming it there let me hit the most enemies and have the greatest effect. It's what my character would do. If you didn't want to be hit, you shouldn't have been there." I demanded he give me healing potions he had horded to fix up myself and companion since he did the damage and the Cleric and I shouldn't have to waste spells over a party member's idiocy, but he kept going on about how it was my fault for standing where he was going to cast a spell so it was on me. Blah, blah, blah.
Finally, the rest of party intervened to end the back-and-forth, but I finished with "If you intentionally use attack magic on me or my companion again when it isn't a matter of life and death, I will return the favor and attack you in return."
Note: My character encountered and joined the party by chance. He had no ties to them or particular reason to like/trust them yet. DM and I had a reason that was going to be revealed before long, but at this point - from my character's perspective - some random Wizard he only just met has recklessly attacked him and refuses to accept fault. It was only OOC "this is a player's character" that kept me from attacking then.
The Wizard's response to ultimatum? "Try it and I'll kill you."
I took a deep breath, and just decided to ignore him in interest of moving on.
Somehow I managed to avoid Wizard blasting me after this in future sessions (though rest of party wasn't so lucky) through a bit of luck combined with a lot of "pew pew"-ing from next to the Wizard and not letting companion help much.
-----
Anyway, after half-dozen to a dozen sessions, I'd decided to leave the campaign. Both due to the fun-drain of not really being able to play character the way I'd built him to be played due to constant fear of Wizard nuking and the player-death on one side or the other that would follow, and because the DM's game style wasn't what I was really wanting at time.
(DM running campaign is one of those ones that basically has you along for the ride in his own fanfic. Not the kind where players are 100% ineffective and DMNPCs do everything worthwhile - he actually is good at combat/encounter balance to ensure players can do their thing and even have chance at creative RP solutions - but he is the kind where the party will follow the overall path/narrative he wants or DMNPCs/"random chance events" will force things along... Honestly, not bad guy to play under since he tells good stories and usually manages to at least make it feel like what you're doing has an impact on things - as long as you follow his not-so-subtle nudges. So have enjoyed playing under him in past, but just wasn't really what I wanted this time.)
Discussed this all with DM. He understood with no hard feelings and I was just going to help finish out a fight set up the previous session so I wouldn't leave the rest of the party short in the encounter.
-----
Cue my final session and meat of the story:
We have the fight encounter that is to be my last. The lackeys all get knocked off and all that's left is the baddy leader. Me (wild shaped Ape w/ club), companion, Fighter, and Cleric have all surrounded him (I didn't have any spells left at this point that wouldn't also hurt group, so joined the fray) and we nearly have him dead. Like, on the last player's turn DM had them double-checking modifiers "to see if baddy was still standing or fell" level of nearly dead. And then comes the Wizard's turn: "Fireball!"
Hits me, companion, Cleric, Fighter, Ranger (he had moved in closer to back up Cleric if she needed to retreat from melee), and baddy. Basically, only Wizard wasn't in area of effect. Fireball wasn't centered on the baddy - that would have hit Wizard too. And he didn't center fireball far enough back to just hit baddy with edge and include the party members on one side of him in blast. Nope, just moved enough he personally wasn't in area.
Obviously, baddie dies. Fighter and my companion both drop unconscious. I'm now at 1 HP. I whisper DM to keep us in initiative. He replies that was already going to be the case because the Fighter and companion needed to go through their death saves.
Excellent... my turn followed Wizard.
My Druid spins around, moves up to Wizard, and swings his club.
Crit for all of 22 damage (5 Strength Modifier [x2], 5 Weapon Enhancement [x2], and rolled 1's on both dice). Wizard hadn't taken any damage during the encounter and was still at his 46 HP max, so while that amount of damage really hurt, he's still able to laugh it off and begins making fun of my rolling 1's. And tells me, "You're gonna pay for this." After all, he knows I've got 1 HP (I'd mentioned it out loud) and all he has to do is basically flick me with his finger to kill me.
But I didn't care. Because I wasn't finished. The club I was using instead of my claw attack had Prismatic Burst enchantment (Magic Item Compendium: Pg 40). I had critted, so it was time to roll which color. 1d8... An 8, nice, time to re-roll twice. Got a 4 and 5, in that order. Wizard makes his first Fort save and doesn't die instantly. 1d6 Con damage instead. A 6! Time to lose another 45 HP there buddy.
For those keeping track, he's now at -21. A standing corpse, despite making save against instant kill. But we can't forget that second ray now, can we? Will he be turned to stone? Despite now being a corpse, DM allowed the attempt at Fort save - at the now reduced Con... and the corpse failed.
There is now a statue of a dead Wizard in the clearing.
Me to rest of party: "Thank you for allowing me to travel with you, but I think it is best we go our separate ways now." Healed my companion and we headed off into woods.
A far more satisfying exit from the campaign than I'd expected.
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Aftermath:
DM told me the next day that the rest of the party had long been pissed at the Wizard player for the constant "It's what my character would do" BS, but hadn't done anything because of certain OOC relationships involved. However, rest of party decided not to restore/resurrect the Wizard because of the attack on entire party that led to it. So, they'd be rolling a new character for next session.
Was then contacted by DM few days later, asking for replacement copy of my character sheet. For two reasons: First, the reason we'd come up with to tie him into party he still wanted to use - with a twist - so my character would show up later, just not as part of the group. Second, the Wizard had rolled Barbarian and in new backstory talked about "encountering a Druid in ape form in woods, killing him, and skinning him to use as cloak" and DM had told him (realizing exactly who he was trying to RP that Druid to be) that he had to actually fight said Druid using new character if he wanted to RP that.
Follow-up from *that* one is that the Barbarian died before ever meeting party and he had to roll up *another* new character. Now he's a Thief whose parents were killed by a Druid so he has personal mission to kill all Druids.
I'm betting he'll attack my character immediately when DM has him show up again in the future.
So glad not to be in party with him any more.
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Edit: *Technically*, since you get min 1 HP per level and the Con drop hadn't dropped him to 0 score, he would have kept 18 of that -45 (4 at first level + 1 for the each of the additional levels), putting him at -3 HP rather than -21. But in the moment we all forgot about it, and in the end it really didn't matter. So... whatever. Dead Wizard statue remains. :P
submitted by wodahseht83 to CritCrab [link] [comments]

Aiming for the eyes without "aiming for the eyes": A breakdown of how to explain abstraction to your players while still having descriptive combat.

If you're a DM and you and your players have a firm grasp of abstraction and how it fits into the game mazel tov! you probably don't need this.
But if you're having trouble explaining how the mechanics interact with the fiction of DMing stick around! I might have useful advice I learned from my table (and at worst, it probably can't hurt). Most of this will be 5e focused.
The super base level of keeping your fiction and mechanics balanced (that I've found) is players can describe exactly what their character is trying to do, but the GM controls how the world reacts to their attempt.
Let's look at one of the most common (on this sub) examples of this to break down.
My players want to be able to aim for weak spots on enemies to gain additional effects. Should I let them?
Obviously every table is different, but as 5e has been pre-balanced for your convenience the safest bet for not accidentally screwing with the mechanical feel of your game is to say "no, you have to work within the attacks/abilities you already have". This isn't just to be mean either! There are a lot of subclasses that specialize in those "extra effects" players want to gain by aiming and allowing other classes to gain those effects can trivialize or invalidate certain class options.
But obviously just saying "no" feels so boring! After all it's a good thing that players are invested in the fiction of the world! But don't forget improv doesn't have to be just "yes, and" it is also "no, but"
What ended up working out for my players was explaining that no, aiming would not mechanically change anything because AC is not "how much armor is this person wearing" it is actually "how difficult is it to hit this person" this is including things like eyes, mouth, neck etc. It it assumed that your character is going to be aiming for enemy weak spots. In addition, you can absolutely state what your character is trying to do if they were to completely succeed, where how successful you are is determined by:
Your attack roll
and
Your damage roll
Example:
Let's say that my ranger PC has said that "they're aiming for the eyes" of my Orc War-chief. They manage to hit his AC, they roll a 25 damage (a solid hit) but he still has 40HP left. I describe the Orc War-chief moving out of the way just in time for the arrow to miss their head, but the arrow still manages to lodge itself firmly in their bicep. The PC was still aiming for the eyes and made a successful shot, but the mechanics are upheld and balanced per RAI/RAW.
And if your characters manage to kill an enemy with their hit? They can absolutely use their narratively aimed shot idea! That is after all why Matt Mercer's "how do you want to do this" gained such popularity. It's a good tool to let players feel more in tune with their characters.
This can work for things outside of combat as well, this sub has a lot of excellent examples of "a 20 on persuasion will not make a king give you his crown, but maybe he'll laugh at your bravado and offer you a different reward instead." It can be used to explain why a good argument fails to be convincing in the hands of a non-charismatic character. "You make your point about how helping to drive out the bandits will only help the town, but all the people can focus on is how terrifying your speaking voice is and you stumble and cut short some words, they doubt your ability to lead"
Even the whole concept of rolling a die at all is the abstraction of the randomness of the world. You may be the best hunter on fantasy earth, but even that can't help that the culprits tracks were decimated by the footprints of the morning's market goers, completely ruining the trail.
And finally, let's say you're talking about how abstraction works in D&D with your players and they just hate it. "That makes no sense" they may say, "I want to be able to do things that would make sense and these mechanics feel limiting/not fun" I would highly recommend, before trying to completely re-write the mechanical balance of D&D, look into some other systems! Most famously Powered by the Apocalypse has Dungeon World, which is a narrative logic driven system and there are plenty of other narrative driven as well.
Anyway hope my struggle through finally figuring out how to explain abstraction to my players can help someone else skip some of the confusing bits. Happy GMing all!
submitted by shostakofish to DMAcademy [link] [comments]

That time my MIL (legally) stole my truck

I do not give permission for this story to be used elsewhere
I posted last week about my exMIL who tried to use my medical information to commit fraud with her 401k. I have another story that enrages me just as much. What can I say? I had surgery recently and am under quarantine, so I have a lot of time to remember all her shitty behavior. It honestly makes me laugh now, and I always have a story to tell at a party. Also, this definitely crosses into justnoso territory.
From my last post: exMIL made very good money as a long-time specialized nurse. She made way more than my exDH and I at the time...think double our combined income. But again, worst person in the world with money.
Anyway, she had decided she wanted to buy a truck. She already had a nice sedan that was paid off and in good shape. But she loved her garage sales, and "needed" a truck to haul all the useless shit she'd buy (then try to present to us as gifts, when it was really just her using us a storage). So, of course, once she decided that, she's off to the races and buys a truck, same day. I honestly don't know how she even got a finance company to give her the loan; her credit was lower than a frog's ass. Given that, her interest rate was astronomical, like the 21% range. She accepted an interest rate you'd expect on a store credit card on vehicle financing. So, so dumb.
Six months later, guess who can no longer make her payments? She comes crying to exDH that's she in such a bind, she doesn't know what she'll do. Turns out, she was three months behind...after six months. I have zero idea how it wasn't repossessed. I advised her just to take the L, let it get repossessed, and go back to using her sedan. Her idea was to borrow money from her 89 year old mother to get the loan current, then have us to take over the payments. And by that, she didn't mean "take over the loan into our names," but for the loan to stay in her name, with us making the payments and using the truck. Basically, she knew we'd make all the payments on time, and that would go onto her credit rating. When it was paid off, she'd sign over the title to us. You get an idea where this is going.
Oh hell naw.
First of all, we didn't need another vehicle, or a car payment (ours were paid off). Second, while it was new, this truck was useless. It was a Ford Ranger, so already a very small truck. It was the single cab, fit two adults, and nothing else. The seats pressed right up against the back wall, so nothing was going back there. My exDH was 6'5", so he looked like he was driving a clown car. If you went grocery shopping, the bed was the only place to put your bags. If it rained, I hope you like soggy Saltines. It also had no 4WD or even AWD, just 2WD rear wheel drive, so it was useless on anything other than dry pavement. And, of course, she got the absolute base model. This was 2004, but it had crank windows, manual door locks, and an AM/FM radio. Not even a CD player. This thing was useless as tits on a boar hog.
My no was apparently not good enough for her, so she goes to exDH. She hassled him constantly, until one day he shows up at home with the damned truck. He sold one of our paid-off, perfectly good cars without telling me and agreed to take over the payments in her name (see? justnoso). I was too young and, frankly, brainwashed by exDH to put up much of a fight. So, our already tight budget now has to stretch another $351.47 (I'll never forget that number) per month.
We make all the payments on time. We paid more than the payment as much as possible, and even put our income tax returns towards getting the principle paid down. We finally get it paid off. We starting hounding her about the title. First, she keeps saying she hasn't gotten it. This went on for months, until exSIL lets slip that she's had it since about two weeks after we paid it off. Then, she keeps saying she doesn't have the time to meet us at the courthouse to sign over the title. No problem, just sign it and we can take it. That's how people buy used cars all the time. She comes up with some bullshit excuse about how she has to be there to make sure it was done correctly. Then, she "lost" the title and had to get a new one. This went on for close to a year.
We were finally able to corner her and demand she come with us now to get the title changed over. All the sudden, she never agreed to that. The whole arrangement was for us to make the payments and use the truck while we were paying for it, then give it back to her. She said it was like a rental. What new fuckery is this? We argued back and forth that this was never the agreement, as we would never have accepted that. I was exactly that day old when I learned what gaslighting was. She would not back down, so we left.
Low and behold, the next day, she shows up with the cops to get the truck back. Her story was that she loaned the car to us, and we refused to return it. We told the cops our side of the story, but since the title was in her name, there was nothing we could do. She graciously says she doesn't want to charge us with car theft, since she got the truck back. She jumps in with this shit eating grin and drives away. The cops obviously know something is wrong, because her story kept changing. But again, she has the title in her grubby hands, so they just warn us to stay out of trouble and leave.
She calls two days later to tell some bullshit about their whole bullshit family. I hung right the fuck up. She calls exDH and they have a conversation like nothing was wrong.. Once they're done, I ask him WTF?! He basically says "oh, we knew she'd pull some shit, so it's better just to let it go and get on with life." He WASN'T EVEN MAD. She had fucked him up so much, and played the poor single mother guilt trip so hard that he just accepted it as normal and moved on.
Again, I was young and not in a good mental place, so I didn't feel like I had any recourse. And any fight I had in me had been beaten down so hard by her (and his) constant fucking drama. I'm ashamed to say, I dropped it. I was such a pussy.
To this day, I still see that garden-gnome-looking cunt driving around in the truck I paid for (we live in a small town). Every time I do, I give her the finger whether she sees me or not. I've done it so much, that my new and fabulous DH will do the same if he sees her when he's alone. I bet she wonders who that handsome, bearded man is that keeps flipping her off. I wish I could tell her "that what's I upgraded you and your flacid dick of a son for."
submitted by warwatch to JUSTNOMIL [link] [comments]

Is beast master ranger really as bad as people make it out to be?

Okay, so hear me out here, i think beast master is actually decent
First thing you have to account for is just how strong is having an extra member in the party? the answer is that extra hands are exceptionally powerful. Ive been playing some of the old d&d video games (in particular baldurs gate, icewind dale and neverwinter nights) recently and i came to realise very quickly how common summoning was in older editions compared to 5e. in 2e clerics and wizards have a plethora of spells that summon all manner of creatures, so why arent they there in 5e? i think the answer is how easily they unbalance encounters, and how WotC figured that out by 5e. in particular im going to use my experience of neverwinter nights, which uses 3e. in that game, druids from level 1 have a permanent and level scaling animal companion, and have access to increasingly better summon animal spells, with the first being a level 1 spell and a new one every other spell level to summon increasingly better animals. Given these spells each 24 hours, you basically have 2 permanent additions to your party (which in the base campaign for nwn is desinged around being a party of 2, you and a follower one level lower) and i quickly found i was mostly unneeded in fights because they are balanced around fewer party members than i technically have. Whilst this using hard coded video game scenarios as examples, the responsive balancing of a DM is still going to be challenged when accounting for an extra member that shouldnt be. I also want to ask if anybody has DM'd for a player who has had a character built around animate dead or some other form of summoning, because im betting those that have had had to account for that heavily when designing combat encounters.
"But the Beast master's companion is useless, it uses the rangers attack action to make its own attack" i hear you cry, "summons have their own turns and their own actions." Well, think about this; you have a permanent extra addition to the party and sure for it to attack, the ranger has to forego their own, thats still another member in the party to act as a buffer at the very least on the front line since its hit points scale with the ranger's level and its extra AC from being able to take the dodge action as a free action means it should be a decent tank that can help keep squishy mages et al safe. And if it dies its free to replace (as long as you can find another beast that fits the requirements).

dont get me wrong though, i still fully admit that the base ranger features of natural explorer and favoured enemy are pretty underwhelming and leave a lot to be desired, but the general versatility both in and out of combat, in my opinion, make up for that.

tl;dr: try beast master ranger, its actually alright.
submitted by The_Red_Celt to DnD [link] [comments]

[Primer] The Nightmare Hive: A Five-Colour Lurrus Slivers Guide

Humans don’t have it easy in fantasy settings. They tend to be cast either as strictly worse versions of other races in all qualities that actually matter, or they’re just the jacks-of-all-trades lacking both the strengths and weaknesses of the others. In many games, this lack of specialization makes humans boring, and keeps them away from presence in minmaxed munchkin builds, but here? They do have one strength.
Diversity.
A band of humans from all five colours trek across the countryside. The finest specimens that the species has to offer. They come from all walks of life: noble priests, veteran soldiers, pirates with even less respect for you than for your property rights. There’s one chick who makes stuff cost more mana somehow. (Do any of the Innistrad novels explain that?)
All march together for a common purpose: using their combined powers, they must exterminate a hive of interplanar rodents. The slivers have expanded their territory in recent months, terrorizing the farmers whose grain the kingdom relies on. The exterminators are well-equipped, bringing magic found in their faith, strength found in the arrival of their comrades, and giant praying mantises found God-knows-where. Discard, +1/+1 counters, ramp - they have it all. If there’s a need that has to be met, you can bet there’s a human somewhere willing to do it for enough coin. But through it all, these bipedal mammals still have one weakness.
Diversity.
Humans are pack animals, you see, but still individuals. Social ones to be sure, but they also appear determined to love their shortcomings more than their potential greatness, and cringe away from the pinnacle of evolution: the parasocial. Their flesh-brains have come so far, but without an omnipresent psionic link, they’re little more than their unicellular ancestors. Limited to a single life. A single existence. You can dismantle an entire army of them just by breaking down their fragile communications systems. Once that’s done, you can just sit back and watch as disorganization dissolves their ranks and their differences drive them to tear each other apart. This is the eternal flaw of the Self: it implies a lack of perfect union with the Whole.
And as these humans, less of a people than a cobbled-together mass of persons, reach the top of the hill and see the outline of the Hive on the horizon, they will know the failure of their species. They will bear witness to the accomplishments of the Whole and even as they fail to articulate it in words, they will know that the Self is the Flaw.
We have long since mended this Flaw. They sent their finest ones, but the fact that their finest are confined to being ones, with gifts that only apply to singular specimens, is their fatal limit. That is why their final stand against our expansion can only ever be that: a final stand.
---
"bro wtf that was cringe, ur gonna lose karma"
Sorry, I’m a wannabe fantasy writer on Reddit. Get used to awful prose.
Welcome to a primer for my particular brew of 5C Slivers in Modern: the Nightmare Hive. It’s something I’ve been somewhat surprised to not see more Slivers players dabbling in. If you ask me, I think they have an unhealthy attachment to 3-drops. 🤮
I’m going to focus on deckbuilding/card choice and playstyle notes. It’s probably not going to be a ton of new information for experienced players, but it can call attention to some micro. I’ll throw some attention to matchup notes but that’s not what’s as fun for me to write. This is also the first time I’ve ever written an MTG primer. Well, a primer that isn’t for a deck that’s actually just a shitpost made of cardboard. (Ask me about 95-land Vendilion Clique EDH!)
There’s not much I have to say for an introduction or a “Why Slivers?” in general. You guys already know it. Slivers have a certain reputation among casual players for being OP. Maybe this is because they’re the truest embodiment of what a tribal deck is. Slivers sacrifice a lot of individual power in order to maximize group power. But really the reason for this is that building a functional Sliver deck for casual is one of the easiest things in the world. As far as fair decks go, you can get a ton of mileage in terms of effectiveness out of relatively little money spent just by rooting through the foul-smelling dumpster that is your LGS’s bulk commons bin, throwing any slivers you find at some lands and calling it a deck. You also get more insight by comparing them to other creature types like Humans or Elves: plenty of those creature types will show up incidentally in more generalist decks, but the instant an opponent plays their first Sliver, you know exactly what’s going on and you know you should be afraid. Consequently, casual circles often have the one Sliver deck of the friend group whose player loves to be feared and who everyone else loves to fear.
This shifts a lot once one goes into competitive environments. Slivers have clear weaknesses, and in my view, many of the common modern Sliver builds fail to really play to their strengths enough to make up for this. I don’t even know if the deck I’m about to describe to you is any different, but I can attest to this deck having a good matchup against other Sliver decks by virtue of sheer speed. Vroom vroom.
Do keep in mind that while I’m hyping this deck up because it’s mine and I’m proud of it, it’s far from perfect. But you know what it is? Consistent, easy to play and fun as SHIT for smoothbrains like me. HAHA TURN CREATURES SIDEWAYS EVERY TURN, WORLD’S BEST STRATEGY GAME, NOW FREE TO PLAY ON MTGARENA
Alright bois, get ready. Strap in, set aside your existential identity as a Unique and become one with the Hive. Click your talons together when you’re ready and brace yourself for some card choice analysis. Truly the funnest part of Magic, at least if you’re like me and spend hours honing a theoretical build for your D&D character without caring to ever actually play it.
If all you care about is the list, here's the summary by a helpful Goyf.

The 0-Drops:

In this deck, our only 0-drops are lands, and you’re probably familiar with what the best choices already are. Where this gets a tad spicy is in the land count: 18. One of the reasons this deck stands at an advantage against other Sliver decks is precisely from the pseudo card advantage provided by being able to draw fewer lands than our opponent and still have a functional deck. Curving lower than burn out here.
4x Cavern of Souls: Surprising literally nobody with this one. In the Bant snowpile meta that hasn't quite gone away with Astrolabe, your opponent will have plenty of countermagic, and this card will be pulling a lot of weight for getting you on even footing with them.
4x Unclaimed Territory: Discount Cavern. The color-fixing is just this valuable, letting us draw on Slivers from every color to create an optimized horde without stressing about our mana sources.
4x Sliver Hive: Here’s something we have over other tribal decks: Twelve different lands that can all tap for colorless as well as one of any color to spend on our creatures. Sliver Hive has a final ability stapled on, but I legitimately feel that this card would be buffed if that ability was replaced with flavor text. That would improve Slivers as a whole by adding to their aesthetic while also removing an ability that literally never gets used, at least in this build. Requires you to draw a third of the lands in your whole library to use, and if you’ve reached that point, you’ve probably already lost.
0x Ancient Ziggurat: WHAT? Yeah yeah, I know. Here’s the thing: With the above lands doing so much for our mana fixing, and a number of other lands we want, there’s little room for Ancient Ziggurat. Which is a shame, because ziggurat is an awesome word that you should strive to use at least once every day. The inability to be used on noncreature sources matters more often than you’d think, usually in the case of sideboard cards but also for a number of hands in which one would be keeping a single land and an Aether Vial.
“But isn’t it better for Lurrus since it can produce any colour to cast it, unlike Sliver Hive?”
Before the nerf, this was correct. However, now that you have to pay 3 generic mana to put your companion into your hand, a cost that Ancient Ziggurat can’t contribute to, it’s no longer worth it.
In short, Ancient Ziggurat is good, but “good” isn’t good enough for the Hive. We demand more.
3x Mutavault: Unfortunately, playing 4 Mutavaults here is suboptimal. Five-color deck needs its five-color sources, and in a deck with 18 lands, we don’t want more than one-sixth of our lands failing to produce colored mana. A number of creatures in the deck are ones Mutavault can’t be used to pay for even if we want to. That said, the 2/2 body that benefits from all the Sliver buffs is commonly the difference between winning and losing a game. In playtesting I’ve found 3 to be the optimal number, but you wouldn’t be totally insane for playing 2 or 4.
2x Silent Clearing: Apparently 18 lands is sometimes too many. The pain from these is usually insignificant, while the card draw can help us pull a clutch win out of nowhere. This particular horizon land is chosen since out of the ones available, it most lines up with our mana requirements. Shoutout to the times you crack it at EoT, draw a creature you can drop with Aether Vial, untap and swing for lethal because of that new Sliver.
1x Snow-Covered Plains: Yes, this deck is very, very bad against Blood Moon. Good thing the Astrolabe ban makes Ponza worse, right? Blood Moon only gets less common in the meta from here, right guys?
The single Plains is mostly a formality, something to fetch off of opponents’ Paths, Assassin’s Trophies and Fields of Ruin. Why Snow-Covered? Mind games. It might cause your opponent to think you run something that makes the snow quality relevant. In truth, it’s because it adds possible variance in your opponent’s mind that they might account for, at zero mechanical downside. I actually don’t like the fact that snow-covered basics are strictly better than standard basics. I’d like to see a modern-legal Snow hoser that’s good enough to use, making snow lands something to use only if your deck actually cares about them rather than making them the optimal default for every single deck.
So, that’s our manabase. Nothing too surprising or exciting, but had to be done.

The 1-Drops:

AND NOW WE GET TO THE CARDS YOU ACTUALLY CARE ABOUT

AIGHT HERE’S HOW YOU MURDER EVERY SAPIENT BEING YOU ENCOUNTER

One of Slivers’ main weaknesses as a tribe is their one-drops. There aren’t many, and the ones we get aren’t absolutely spectacular. No 1 mana 2/2s with haste or anything. (God can you imagine how OP a 1 mana 2/2 with haste would be?) But they do get the job done, providing the keyword soup that makes this deck favourable against other fair decks. Just to fluff this out and address some bad possibilities people might want to account for, I’ll also be rating every one-drop sliver. I know you’re desperate for my opinion.
4x Aether Vial: When I first got into Magic, I didn’t understand what was so good about Aether Vial. Sure, you can get some cards into play faster, but it also takes up your first turn as well as a card to use. You’re just kneecapping yourself in the long run. What I didn’t understand is that much of the time, there is no long run in Modern. The added speed is worth it, as is the instant timing and the immunity to counterspells. Aether Vial is our only noncreature spell maindeck and we’ll drop it turn 1 if it’s in hand. They’d better counter it then, or the combination of Cavern of Souls and Aether Vial itself will make counters useless. This card is also what lets this deck survive at all against Blood Moon.
0x Metallic Sliver, Plated Sliver: The earliest slivers weren’t that powerful. We’re not missing much from being unable to use these.
0x Mindlash Sliver: I do wish this was somehow playable, but alas, it just wasn’t meant to be. You’re spending mana to 2-for-1ing yourself, unless your hand is empty, but even then this probably isn’t worth it. You don’t want to rip apart hands, you want to rip apart FACES. Doesn’t make the cut. Maybe one day we’ll get a better version of this that’ll be useful against control.
0x Screeching Sliver: If someone manages to make Sliver Mill good, let me know. It’s certainly not viable now given all the Uros and dredge.
4x Sidewinder Sliver: Now we’re talking! Costs 1 white mana, meaning it works with any of our non-Mutavault lands. Flanking essentially makes this a lord for combat only, but there will be places where the fact it gives others a minus instead of your own creatures a plus is relevant: opposing lifelink becomes less powerful, Ice-Fang Coatls die before they get to deal damage, even 1-toughness first strikers die before getting to deal damage. Flanking only works against creatures without flanking, but the only time that’ll come up in Modern is the mirror, and in that matchup this will essentially just be vanilla since it grants the ability to all slivers, not just yours.
0x Virulent Sliver: Maybe in the past you could’ve made the case for this. Maybe you could argue that in some very niche cases like against soul sisters or decks that can continuously pick off your lords, the poison will kill before the damage. Especially if you get multiple of these out. But nowadays our selection of one-drops isn’t quite that terrible, and we don’t have to use this.
4x Galerider Sliver: The best one-drop Sliver in most cases. Little to say, makes them unblockable to most creatures. Being able to block enemy fliers sometimes matters, but usually your playstyle is just HAHA TURN CREATURES SIDEWAYS, MAGIC IS THE WORLD’S BEST STRATEGY CARD GAME. If your opening hand has multiple one-drop slivers, you might want to drop one of the other one-drops first in order to bait the removal on that one. To use Sidewinder Sliver as a point of comparison: making your opponent’s blocking choices less optimal isn’t as good as taking away their option of blocking at all.
4x Striking Sliver: Now this is interesting. Most Sliver decks I’ve seen run 2 of both this and Sidewinder, but since this deck is meant to be faster and more aggressive, we want 4 of both. Especially since both of them are equally good against one-toughness blockers like Snapcaster Mage or Ice-Fang Coatl. Let’s compare them for interest’s sake. First Strike works on both attacks and blocks, unlike flanking, and you can Aether Vial the Striking Sliver in as a combat trick after blocks. Can’t do that with Sidewinder since flanking is a triggered ability. By contrast, Sidewinder Sliver is easier to cast given our mana base, works better as a combat trick in more cases (a 2/2 sliver with first strike blocked by a 2/2 successfully turns a trade into a win, while being blocked by a 3/3 fails to turn a loss into a trade; flanking succeeds for both) and as the slight nudge into superiority for me, flanking stacks. Also importantly, many of your opponents will not know that flanking stacks until after you inform them of this once they’ve already formally declared blockers. For me, flanking stacking makes it more valuable to get multiple Sidewinder Slivers as opposed to multiple Striking Slivers, and in most matchups if I’m boarding out 1-drops, I’ll start taking out copies of Striking before Sidewinder. Exceptions do exist: against 8-ball you will be very thankful for your 1/1 first striker that totally negates their single-toughness attackers.
Well I guess that’s all of them. Time to move on to-
>OBJECTION!<
2x Changeling Outcast?!: That’s right folks, you heard it here first. We’re this aggressive. We’re committing so hard to our lord and savior The Fast that we’re throwing in a couple of 1-mana unblockable changelings who will benefit from all pumps given to slivers. The fact they can’t block is hardly ever relevant in a deck that intends to do no blocking, and the unblockable clause makes this a clock that gets surprisingly fast once you have a couple of the two-drops down. Costing black mana means there’s only four lands in the deck that can’t cast it, making it a reliable first-turn play if you really have nothing else to put down, and they’ll let you win through a number of board stalemates. All of that said, these will usually be your first cuts when it comes to sideboarding. Not that they’re bad, just that everything else is better - these are essentially flex slots. Try them, and if you find them underwhelming, I have other suggestions in their stead for the two-drops. Do note, however, that this can make your curve a bit too high to be truly speedy.

The 2-Drops:

The reason this build works, and arguably the reason the whole tribe works, is that Slivers have such an abundance of 2-mana lords. (Basically, if you wish Pack Rat.dec was a good deck, play this. That's why I do.) They wind up buffing each other and creating monstrous attack phases in a short number of turns. The consistency is phenomenal since they’re all so interchangeable and redundant. Not all of them are created equal, but all of them will nonetheless serve you well in ripping people’s midsections open.
4x Unsettled Mariner: This time we’ll just get the one changeling out of the way upfront: this guy is good. 2 mana 2/2 makes it a reasonable rate for a body, and you can drop it early in place of a lord without actually losing much damage. Many opponents will be tunnel visioned on killing this in order to free up mana, which will also take up their removal that should have been saved for killing lords. It makes life noticeably harder for burn, 8rack, Jund as long as they have to let it live, and so on. An excellent addition to the deck from Modern Horizons, instant 4-of. Be sure not to forget that it doesn’t just prevent the spellcasting, but counters it as a triggered ability, so you won’t just have to correct your opponent that they’re unable to cast their spell given the mana they have like with Thalia - their spell is directly countered if they screw up. Also remember that the counter applies to spells that target your nonsliver permanents, such as land destruction, as well as to you! Delaying Cryptic Command for a turn is super helpful in the control matchup. Lastly, it applies to abilities as well. Planeswalker abilities, Fields of Ruin, Thought-Knot Seer ETB trigger, even Gifts Ungiven, all of it has to have extra mana paid or it does nothing.
0x Clot, Heart, Muscle, Talon, Winged, Acidic, Crystalline, Hibernation, Victual, Crypt, Hunter, Mistform, Quick Sliver: None of them are modern legal. The most unfortunate loss is Crystalline Sliver, which could be out here giving all of them shroud and thus making removal totally pointless. At least Unsettled Mariner does an acceptable impression.
0x Gemhide Sliver: WHAT DO WE NEED THIS MUCH MANA FOR? GET OUTTA HERE GREEN BOY
0x Ghostflame Sliver: WHAT DO WE NEED TO BE COLORLESS FOR? GET OUTTA HERE COLORLESS BOY (might be fun tech against all is dust or ugin, but by that point you’ve already lost)
0x Quilled Sliver: WHY IS THIS SLIVER UNTAPPED?! YOU’RE FIRED!
0x Spined Sliver: This is an interesting one to me, and I’ve come very close to running it. The 2/2 body makes it attractive, as does the ability acting similar to flanking. Two things contribute to it not being worth running: the fact that at the end of the day its ability is a worse flanking, and the fact that casting it is too awkward for the utility we get out of it. We need either Vial or two lands that can tap for any colour to get Spined Sliver out, and while we actually do meet that criteria the majority of the time, the minority is large enough to be worthy of consideration.
0x Spinneret Sliver: WHY ARE YOU TRYING TO BLOCK?! GET OUTTA HERE SPIDER SLIVER. ALSO WE ALREADY GET ACTUAL FLYING FROM GALERIDER SO WHO NEEDS YOU
0x Two-Headed Sliver: It sometimes gets close to kinda viable-ish, but the fact it’s a 2 mana 1/1 that doesn’t pump itself as well as the fact that we already have several flying sources and a few unblockables in here means that this ability is very often pointless. You will feel the pain when it’s absent, and you’re unlikely to notice the pain of it being present and wishing it was something else, but trust me - the damage is there even if you don’t feel it. It’s not good enough for the main deck, and the sideboard has much more important circumstances to concern itself with than whether or not menace would be good in this matchup. We already run over most other go-wide decks, and are unlikely to lose due to a lack of menace.
0x Cautery Sliver: You just get so much more out of any given sliver from its quality of improving other slivers than you get from sacrificing them to ping stuff.
0x Darkheart Sliver: I legitimately believe this one can be viable. If you’re in a particularly aggressive meta, you can pull wins out of the extra life from this. Against burn, each sliver can directly cancel out a burn spell. Against Jund, you can respond to all removal spells by gaining some extra life. Sac everything in response to a boardwipe to buy time for your recovery, including dodging the exile clause on Anger of the Gods. Chump and sac before damage if you manage to be losing for some reason. There was a time when I ran a single one mainboard as a better game 1 against burn decks, and I wouldn’t fault you for running it as a one-of, though I now consider the loss of consistency for doing so to be a bit too much. Especially since Unsettled Mariner is already a card that makes it more awkward for your opponents to remove your slivers, you already have some protection from this angle.
4x Sinew Sliver: And now we’re off to the races! Drop it turn 2, cast it with an extremely easy mana cost for this deck, Aether Vial it in before damage to screw over opponents’ blocking decisions, pump your Mutavault, save creatures from damage spells. Sinew Sliver puts in a ton of work, and is easily one of the best cards in the deck. PUT IT DOWN, MAKE ALL YOUR SLIVERS RIPPED, TURN YOUR CREATURES SIDEWAYS, YOU CANNOT LOSE.*
\you can sometimes lose)
4x Frenzy Sliver: I don’t like Frenzy Sliver. I just don’t. It’s a 2-mana 1/1 that only adds power and only for unblocked creatures. Can’t even Aether Vial it in after blockers are declared. Sinew Sliver sparks joy. Frenzy Sliver does not spark joy. However, it’s very easy for this deck to cast and it comes close enough to being a lord for this highly aggressive list that it makes the cut as a 4-of. If you’re considering cutting two-drops for your sideboard cards, these will be among the first to go, unless your opponent plays so few targeted spells and abilities that Unsettled Mariner isn’t worth it.
0x Manaweft Sliver: WHAT DO WE NEED THIS MUCH MANA FOR? GET OUTTA HERE GREEN BOY
4x Predatory Sliver: Yes… YEEEEEESSSSS! One-sided Sinew Sliver STRONK! Costs green instead of white, but being one-sided matters more often than you think, and not just for the mirror. Sinew Sliver will also be buffing opposing Mutavaults and Unsettled Mariners. Predatory Sliver is consistently a house against decks of all kinds, being cast turn 2 or being dropped by Aether Vial at instant speed to wreak havoc on opponents. Many question why one would even play Slivers when options like Merfolk and Goblins are available, and the answer is that we’ve already touched on 12 different damage-boosting 2-drop slivers, and we’re not even done!
0x Sentinel Sliver: Similar to Darkheart Sliver, I used to run this as a one-of and I’m quite convinced it’s viable depending on meta. Easy to cast, 2/2 body, and without being able to use the 3-mana lifelink sliver, this does a lifegain impression by allowing us to threaten blocks where we couldn’t before. That said, its benefit is situational and its presence raises our curve as well as potentially the need for more lands. I leave it out, but you wouldn’t be insane for including one if you have an aggressive creature-based meta.
0x Diffusion Sliver: Other Slivers players will maul me for this choice, but it comes back to how aggressive this deck wants to be. 2 mana 1/1s really need to earn their place, and this doesn’t quite do it, especially with Unsettled Mariner already present in the deck. Diffusion Sliver is an absolute house in more midrangey or ramp-focused sliver builds to protect the big boys, but this list doesn’t lean so heavily on any individual component, and it would typically rather draw another lord than a diffusion sliver. Especially when it’s already late game or when it’s trying to recover from a wiped board. So what I’m getting at is something you probably already knew: defense is for wimps.
4x Leeching Sliver: This is a better version of Frenzy Sliver. It still has many of the same problems, but the advantages of life loss as opposed to a damage boost are crucial: the life loss bypasses effects like Worship, isn’t prevented by Fogs, still applies even if the attacking creature is blocked, and the triggers can finish off a nearly-dead opponent even if they have enough creatures to block everything. 16 2-mana lords. This is why you play slivers.
0x Venom Sliver: This can work as a one-of if the stars align and you have an extremely weird meta full of big creatures that aren’t Uro and Kroxa. But in most metas the deathtouch just isn’t going to be useful enough. Your creatures should get big enough to kill with combat damage, and you’d rather have a lord instead of this to boost said combat damage.
0x Bladeback Sliver: Slivers that are tapping to deal direct damage aren’t benefiting from the 16 lords. We don't like your type 'round these parts.
4x Cloudshredder Sliver: Oh-HOOOOH, this thing is spicy. This absolute MADMAN acts as Galeriders 5-8 for much more consistent evasion, as well as haste. This is the quality it takes to let a 2-mana 1/1 that doesn’t pump itself be viable, and it earns its place unquestioningly. Seriously, this allows for absolutely ridiculous plays. Turn 1 Aether Vial, turn 2 Cloudshredder Sliver, Vial in Sidewinder Sliver and swing for 2, turn 3 Striking Sliver, Predatory Sliver, Vial in another Predatory Sliver, swing for 15, flying, flanking, first strike. There are many decks that just cannot handle this pressure, especially if they’ve already shocked themselves. If they Anger of the Gods now, they’ll still be low enough for you to rebuild and kill with a second wave later.
0x Dregscape Sliver: This may or may not be the correct choice. It’s what I’m currently using due to trying to avoid the unearth being a nonbo with a certain nightmare cat. No question that these are good, and might actually warrant a place here, but this specific build performs just fine without them. Like the other 0-but-viable slivers, you can play around with cutting the Changeling Outcasts for a couple copies if you wish.
0x Enduring Sliver: WHY AREN’T YOU ATTACKING? GET OUT OF HERE ABZAN SLIVER

The 3-Drops:

Why would anyone in their right mind play 3-drops in a non-ramp deck? This is modern. Format's too fast and degenerate for that, bucko.
With one exception.

Lurrus of the Dream-Den

The benefit for the restriction, besides the lower land count. We all know how awesome Lurrus is. Format-breaking monster.
“But u/Yaldev, companions got nerfed!”
You call that a nerf?! Now we can pay 3 mana, the same as its normal cost, but now it’s colorless, and then put it into play at instant speed and uncounterably with Aether Vial! Combined with the fact that the hardest abusers of Lurrus are now considerably less able to abuse it themselves, while it actually got better for us specifically, and I think there’s never been a better time to play this deck!
If you do feel like casting Lurrus from hand, it costs 1 colourless and two hybrid black/white, so even our non-5C lands can contribute to casting it. Also keep in mind that it’s totally viable to play your “name a creature type” lands and name Nightmare for the sake of being able to cast Lurrus, AND keep in mind that those lands will still be able to be used to pay for your changelings since they also count as Nightmare Cats. Fun!
Lurrus is such a boon for this deck, despite not being a sliver. It has lifelink, working well against burn and prowess. It lets you come back from a number of different boardwipes. It frees up the space that would have been taken up by Dregscape Sliver to instead get other utility and one-mana spells while still having access to reanimation. You can recur your sideboard cards if they get destroyed. This card is just so GOOD and I can’t believe that other Slivers players are so delusional that they think it’s worth it to trade off Lurrus for cards that cost THREE mana!
But what about Collected Company?
Collected Company is indeed one of the best arguments against a Lurrus build, but there are a few details I want to call attention to, one of which is the impact of both the mana cost and the coloured requirement. Including Collected Company demands a retooling of the mana base, reducing consistency in exchange for potential pop-offs that have a ceiling that feels good to pull off, but is typically overkill.
The other issue is one that doesn’t have as much attention paid to it: it increases how many noncreature spells you’re running. Despite the bans, we’re likely still looking at a meta with a dominant snow-pile control feel. A deck with enough Dovin’s Vetos and Force of Negations to spare. By making these cards practically useless by sticking to almost entirely creature spells, we deprive our opponent of resources.
All of that said, you actually could still play around with including Collected Company as well as Lurrus. Remember, Lurrus’s restriction only applies to permanents, not to instants and sorceries. It’ll just require retooling your mana base a bit, probably including another land or two and dropping some of the any-colour producers in favour of green lands, Silent Clearings go out for Horizon Canopies, and it makes you more vulnerable to Grafdigger’s Cage, a card that opponents will already be boarding in against you if they have it in order to deal with Lurrus. You also won’t get maximum value since you have no 3 drops to get. This is essentially 4 mana for 4 mana at most.
Slivers isn’t a solved archetype. Feel free to be a scientist, do your own experiments, add to collective knowledge of the Slivers Player Hivemind.

Sideboard:

For this sideboard, I’ve opted towards going hard against specific decks rather than having few cards for everything. This is in part out of necessity, since our options for diversifying legitimately are limited: the Slivers that are worth including in sideboards are 3+ mana, and that leaves only colourless spells that cost 2 or less. We can’t go wide, so we have to go deep.
4x Chalice of the Void: BEHOLD THE FUNSLAYER. Chalice on 1 is your answer to all the decks you already know are reliant on 1 drops, including but not limited to:
To account for this, you’ll typically be boarding out some 1-drops to account for strong likelihood of them being uncastable, though even then, there’s still a good chance you’ll get to use them anyway. Aether Vial turn 1 will let you get them in without casting, while Cavern of Souls will make your 1-drops uncounterable by Chalice.
Also keep in mind the super spicy Chalice on 0, which makes life difficult for UR Free Spells, Cascade, any cheesy strats trying to be Cheerios in 2020, Prime Time (NO PACT 4 U), and once again, Ad Nauseam. 0 stops them from casting Lotus Bloom from exile!
Overall, I think Chalice is the deck’s best sideboard weapon. Do not run less than 4. It’s too valuable.
4x Dismember: Sometimes there are creatures you genuinely have to worry about. Stoneforge Mystic fetched Batterskull and you can’t handle it being played on turn 3. Goyf needs to die before it gets massive. Against other tribal decks, taking out a key lord can be more valuable than yet another 1-drop sliver on your own side. 4 life is a lot to pay, but often this card will save you more than 4 life, or prevent more than 4 life gained for your opponent, or just secure a win that could have otherwise been thrown into question. Also keep in mind that because your Silent Clearings tap for black, they can contribute to the Phyrexian mana cost to save a teensy bit of life.
4x Soul-Guide Lantern: This can easily be substituted for Tormod’s Crypt if that’s your preference. I just like the Lantern for the ETB exile so that it doesn’t have to be cracked as early just to get rid of a single problematic card in a graveyard. In any case, this answers dredge, Uro, Jund and so forth. Can also be sacced to draw if you simply must win the game before your opponent’s next turn and desperately need to hit something to secure that. As a bonus, it can be recurred with Lurrus as both repeatable grave hate and card draw.
1x Damping Sphere: In all likelihood you’ll want 2 of these if Tron has relevant presence in your meta, but for my own deck I prefer to keep it to 1. Nothing special here, it hits all the same stuff you’d expect, such as Tron, Storm and Prowess. The annoying thing about it is that you also happen to be one of the decks that wants to put out several spells per turn, meaning that Damping Sphere will be slowing you down as well.
1x Torpor Orb: In all likelihood you’d rather drop this to double up on Damping Spheres, but I find that in longer games, you’ll get a ridiculous amount of mileage out of this bad boy. Your deck has exactly zero ETB triggers, so you’ll miss out on nothing, while simultaneously gimping Snapcaster Mages, Ice-Fang Coatls, Soul Sisters, Squadron Hawks, Rangers and Ranger-Captains of Eos, Seasoned Pyromancers, Silvergill Adepts, Harbingers of the Tides, Merfolk Tricksters, Thassa’s Oracle, Champions of the Parish, Thalia’s Lieutenants, Detention Mages, Freebooters, Thought-Knot Seers, those god-awful “turn your lands into artifacts and then Reclamation Sage them” decks, and need I even mention blink strats?

Piloting the Deck:

BRRRRRRRRBRBRBRRRRRRBBPLTHPBLBWRBPWBLGPTH
VRRRRRRRRROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMM
In many games, this deck plays out in quite similar ways: Turn 1 sliver, turn 2 lord and swing, turn 3 another lord and swing with second mainphase one drop, turn 4 play 2 more lords and kill. May take an extra turn or two depending on their removal and how painful their manabase is. Seriously, it’s impressively fast, while also being impressively consistent.
Because the creature spells in your library curve out at 2, you’re perfectly fine with keeping a hand consisting of a single land and an Aether Vial. You can leave the Vial at 2 charge counters for the whole game, and even if by some freak of probability you never draw a second land, you can cast your 1-drops with the single land. At the same time, drawing more than one Aether Vial isn’t redundant for you, since there are a number of times when you’ll want to tick a 2-counter vial up to 3 for the sake of dropping Lurrus.
Note that in most games, Lurrus won’t even come out. Deck is 3FAST. It’s more of a possibly-turn-losses-into-wins sort of card. In games you were going to win anyway, it’s rarely necessary.
Deck’s fun. Sometimes you do actually have to think about the attacks you’re making. Sometimes you have to play around your opponent’s open mana meaning they very likely have something to pick off a lord. That can impact whether you’re still willing to attack with your 3/3 that’ll be brought down to a 2/2 into their blocker. Sometimes you have multiple lords in hand and you play the weaker one first to bait removal. I can’t realistically cover every situation, but I can offer some general advice:

Matchup Notes

This primer's already approaching the character cap for reddit, so here's a separate document for any hotties who've made it this far.

Conclusion (ft. Shameless Self-Plug)

Thanks for reading this, magicTCG lurkers! Apart from wanting to give back to all the primer writers who've helped me smash face in Magic and other games through the years, I wrote this in order to get my writing in front of people's beautiful faces. If you like my style, feel free to check out my fantasy/sci-fi writing project at Yaldev. It's got weaponized cyborgs, undead dinosaurs, sentient paper airplanes, Horse Meat, lots of pretty art, and if you're a Vorthos flavour-geek you'll definitely be seeing how MTG influences the worldbuilding. Hopefully that's a good thing.
Feel free to post comments and discussion, I should be around to provide responses of questionable value.
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