No X-cuses!

Format: Casual Golden Age (officially), Modern strongly recommended (and used by nearly everyone)

And this week, in the second to last event before Canadian Nationals…I wanted to troll Yuan-ti. This was my sole purpose. So I decided to build an X-men control team. And if I’d lose, I’d have…

No X-cuses!

The Team:  X-men: Modern Control From Hell Edition

The team was originally supposed to be about Sunfire and Bishop. In short, I wanted to troll SR Yuan-ti by putting these two on the board together and, functionally, shut down Attune completely. Bishop stops all damage to me, and since Attune deals at most 2 damage per instance of damage, Sunfire soaks up everything targeting my characters.

Jean Grey and Storm serve as control and removal. If Bishop gets shut down, going for Jean Grey to make Yuan-ti impossible to field is a viable strategy. And Storm, well, not only is she great against characters, but she’s also the best way to stop Green Devil Mask (which is a clear weakness of this team). Mutation went in so that I could trigger Storm and get Jean Grey to as high a level as possible for her effect.

I went for Jubilee for cheap damage to my opponent. The damage was intended both to help my win condition and to get characters off the field if I went for Jean Grey. And of course, I put in Shriek for blanking.

I looked at my team and saw that I had a straight curve of purchase costs (2-3-3-4-5-6). I wanted to try Knowhere to see if I could “progress” along that curve and use this to get to my more expensive control pieces.

And then I realized…hey, I’ve got Knowhere, I’m running X-men, why not go for a What If? Ok, there were plenty of reasons not to, but I still did it. Say hello to…

Yep, seriously, we’re going there. I wanted damage output that I could get on the field via Knowhere (so no “when fielded” effects), and I wanted to use X-men only for characters. Plus, I have the global to get her at level 1 reliably for her ability. So I just decided: why not, let’s go crazy. And so I did.

And with that said, on to the games!

Game 1:

My first game was against C Yuan-ti and SR Jubilee. In this game, some bad early rolls on my end meant Jean Grey hit the field pretty quick. This made my opponent’s life very difficult, keeping his field lean. He could’ve dealt more damage to me had he used Shriek on Jean Grey, but as I figured out after, he misunderstood that he could blank Jean before she dealt her damage. Likewise, he had U Basilisk, but forgot it had Deadly for most of the game. However, he had Green Devil Mask, and I couldn’t get Storm to get it off the board. In the end, I managed to push a fair amount of damage through (including with Cosmic X-23!), and he couldn’t damage me enough to compensate. I won due to having higher life points after time and extra turns.

1-0

Game 2:

This game was against Nobby + Collector control. Storm did a lot of work for me here. My opponent kept using Shriek on Bishop (even though I didn’t have him out), so Collector got Shrieked, and Storm was free to let loose on my opponent’s board. I got to use Knowhere a fair bit to swap stuff out (including swapping out Storm for, again, Cosmic X-23!), which gave my opponent fits when I’d have a Knowhere in my Reserve Pool after declaring attackers. Jubilee also pushed a fair bit of damage this time. In the end, I simply outpaced Collector’s damage. By the time I got Nobby’d at all, my opponent’s life was so low, and I had such an advantage in the number of characters on the board, that it was too little too late. I won.

2-0

Game 3:

And my opponent for this time? SR Yuan-ti. It had to happen sometime. However, I didn’t have the chance to go for Sunfire + Bishop. Instead, I went for Shriek and Storm to try to control my opponent, and I got Jubilee for damage. This lean approach was very helpful, especially since I rolled sidekicks all game long. Knowhere, on the other hand, would not come up. Still, with Yuan-ti blanked by Shriek, Storm keeping his board lean, and a lot of damage being dealt by Jubilee, my opponent didn’t have the time to pivot to his secondary strategy, and I ended up winning with a big swing into an empty board. I outpaced Yuan-ti, somehow.

3-0

Game 4:

For the final match of the night, I went up against Dum Dum + Wong + Madame Web + R Sasquatch. So in short, I was up against team that yelled “Aggro”. I went for Jubilee and Storm again for damage and removal, and I managed some fun Knowhere shenanigans (e.g. use Storm’s Awaken with Mutation, send opposing character to use, attack, Knowhere her out for a big character and deal more damage than you would otherwise). After a couple of tricky plays like that, I had a massive advantage. I later used Storm to reroll his one remaining active character (which was a massive Sasquatch buffed by 2 Nova Corps Uniforms), it got sent to Used, and I swung in for the win.

4-0

Post-Mortem:

-I went 4-0. With those around me running their prospective Nats team. With Cosmic X-23 on my team…how the flipping heck did that happen??? For the record, Cosmic X-23’s not an optimal card; it’s silly, it’s alright, but not something to go out of your way to use. Sunfire was a better source of damage some games (that level 3 side is insane).

-That’s nothing new, but SR Jubilee and R Storm were clearly awesome. I managed to go toe to toe with SR Yuan-ti using these two, which is not something I expected.

-R Knowhere should see more competitive play. It opens so many options and in the right build, it can be an absolute nightmare for the opponent; you can have multiple options to “Knowhere” to and you give them bad choices, which is always good.

-Looking at my first opponent and U Basilisk, I’m increasingly impressed with that card. It’s a pain to deal with for sure.

Overall, not much to add; that was a nasty control team. X-men are still a strong affiliation, even with only XFC giving us X-men. I can’t begin to imagine how strong they will be once X-men Forever comes out.

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