It’s been a while since I have written an article like this. Well, at least I didn’t procrastinate for like three weeks after playing a GP… Anyways, here is the introduction to my latest deck: Warhorse-Machina.
When building a deck for a new format, you want to play the best proactive thing you can find. Reactive decks need to be aware of what they are reacting to. Since this is nearly impossible in an open format, both Lars and I ended up with rather aggressive strategies in Aristella, Twin Prince (NWE-057) (aka Fairytale pile) and Machina, the Machine Lord (SKL-087) // Machina, the Mechanical Emperor (SKL-087J).
These decks have two common denominators:
1. They both have excellent proactive strategies that cheat the Will system by building more board than they should be able to afford that early into the game.
2. They are also both able to use Warhorse (NWE-011) efficiently. An important property of a deck, since Warhorse (NWE-011) is the most broken and abuseable card the game has seen so far. Both decks are also fully functional under Dreiwing, Mechanized Wind of Destruction (GRV-040).
The Machina, the Machine Lord (SKL-087) deck I ended up running, contained a lot of non negotiable cards it has to run combined with some personal choices.
The Main Engine
4x Warhorse (NWE-011)
4x Prototype Magi Trooper (NWE-095)
4x Horn of Sacred Beasts (SKL-099)
4x Selective Decapitation (TST-060)
4x The Origin of the Seven Lands (PofA-112)
4x Dark Alice, Rabbit Princess (DBV-009)
These are the cards every Machina, the Machine Lord (SKL-087) deck should run. Warhorse (NWE-011) and Prototype Magi Trooper (NWE-095) are the best cards to find off of Machina’s ability to search the deck for free. Horn of Sacred Beasts (SKL-099) is required to return all of them back to the deck to use them again while also providing a zero Will interaction against graveyard based decks. It also prevents Union Seven from Zeus, the First Olympian (GRV-087) // Order of the Olympians (GRV-087J) throughout the game.
What are Selective Decapitation (TST-060) and Dark Alice, Rabbit Princess (DBV-009) for? To get rid of the board you put so much ‘effort’ and resources into playing. Prototype Magi Trooper (NWE-095) only draws a card if you don’t control another one. A zero Will “draw a card” resonator is much stronger than a 1/1 vanilla most of the time. The main play is to cast two copies of Prototype Magi Trooper (NWE-095) and then respond to the enter of the second one by sacrificing both of them to Selective Decapitation (TST-060), thus drawing a card as you dont control any Prototype Magi Trooper (NWE-095) anymore. When playing the deck, preserving a way to sacrifice and return Warhorse (NWE-011) and Prototype Magi Trooper (NWE-095) is the key to winning with the deck. The Origin of the Seven Lands (PofA-112) is in this deck just because Dreiwing, Mechanized Wind of Destruction (GRV-040) exists. Not playing the maximum copies of this card is bad deckbuilding in my opinion. It also destroys The Witch of the Fallen Kingdom (ADW-072), which is this deck’s mortal enemy, or draws a card.
4x Angelic Battle Barrier (NWE-001)
4x Sealed One-Eyed Dragon (NWE-079)
4x Alice’s Fantastic Trick (GRL-004)
4x Necronomicon Barrier (ADW-066)
2x Fiethsing, 100 Years of Wizardry (GOG-047)
1x Typhon, Asteroid Cluster (NWE-100)
Angelic Battle Barrier (NWE-001) is Law of Silence (CMF-071) with the extra application of stopping Machina-Warhorse as well as the Fairytale decks for a turn. Also free interaction is really, really good in a deck that discards for handsize almost every turn. Sealed One-Eyed Dragon (NWE-079) is a free killspell that draws a card if you brick on them. The lifecost requirement is nullified by Warhorse (NWE-011) lifegain. Alice’s Fantastic Trick (GRL-004) is always playable due to Warhorse (NWE-011) counting for cards played towards it. In addition it’s unchaseable on your turn and can hit everything. If you want to play a removal that’s not free, it’s this one!
Necronomicon Barrier (ADW-066) is another cloud type of interaction but severely underperformed for me. I would store 3-4 copies in the sideboard and no copies in my main deck. Cloud type effects are much stronger since the advent of Child of the Fire Moon (NWE-013) and Child of the Darkness Moon (NWE-051) stopping almost any other type of interaction for free. Typhon, Asteroid Cluster (NWE-100) is another 0 ana search card and enables you to play the ‘addition’ synergy cards by nature of always having an addition available. This is used for Fiethsing, 100 Years of Wizardry (GOG-047): in the worst case she’s a 4/4 Wall of Wind (TMS-064). In the best case she’s a one Will Kaguya, Sealed God of the Moon (DBV-095). So she’s better than cards that are currently banned and we get to use her. She’s not great against Child of the Fire Moon (NWE-013) so I opted to only main two copies. The other two were backup from the side. She is a big reason no deck outside of Lars his Fairytales could even compete against the deck. Typhon, Asteroid Cluster (NWE-100) also allows you to play the Engineer of Eternal (NWE-063). However I would remove her from this build of the deck as she makes the deck even weaker to Angelic Battle Barrier (NWE-001) and Child of the Light Moon (NWE-003).
With the amount of small creatures the deck provides, a go-wide approach is best to end the game. I opted to play Magic Stone Research Institute (MSW-087) which also doubles as graveyard removal in the mirror. The Gearsification Facility of Solaris (NWE-092) tried to recover Machina, the Machine Lord (SKL-087) to remove the grave more often. In theory great, in practice not so much. Sprinting Steward (NWE-021) works just as well, but requires a weird stonebase to be playable.
Additional option: Alvarez, True Demon Castle (ROL-022)
It’s another way to get rid of your Prototype Magi Trooper (NWE-095) in the early game. Furthermore it stops Neverend, Fairy Tale Dragon (MSW-043) from ruining your game. The fairytale deck cannot function as long as Alvarez, True Demon Castle (ROL-022) is in play. If I would play an event now this, I would include three copies of this in my deck and side the fourth.
So what is the conclusion? Warhorse-Machina is an amazing deck and the meta is weird.