Aggro Basics and decision making - help

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biadetic
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Aggro Basics and decision making - help

Postby biadetic » Tue Aug 26, 2014 3:45 pm

Hey there everyone. I'd like to ask several questions that might seem like common sense for some people or basic decisions but I'd just like to see peoples thoughts and ideas. Been a long time Rx player but I don't think I'm as good as i could be due to silly mistakes so I'd just like to throw out some situations so I'd appreciate any help and this seems like the place to do it :)

This will be mainly focused on aggro decks, lets say RabbleRed for now.

How do you prioritize your 1 drops? Is Foundry STreet always the turn 1 play? Is there a time where you don't play it first? What if your hand does not have FSD, let's say Firedrinker Loyalist Cackler, is there a preference here? I'm guessing maybe the firedrinker if you think they will play Caraytid t2? Or would you rather just get your other
creatures in play?

Using the foundry street denizen again, what is a bad attack in the early turns? Lets say I can attack for 2-3 with the FSD on turn 2 but they have a 1 drop, do you always attack? I know if it's a mana dork they might not want to block and lose their dude, but do you always attack? If they block with their guy and you trade, is it always better than not attacking?

In the case of Hall of Triumph, do you want it in play as soon as possible or are you fine waiting a couple turns and just slamming the Rabblemaster? What kind of matchups dictate the order you play them?

Against control how much are you prepared to commit to the board versus the idea of being wrathed? Does it depend on how much power you have and how much you can hit them for before they hit 4 mana? If your'e able to offload your hand turn 2 or 3, would you prefer not to play it all and sacrifice the early damage just to hold back for a possible wrath?

Does being on the play affect how you start your turn 1, should
you be playing differently? Assuming you are the beatdown?
On the note of beatdown vs control, if you know you are against GW or even rabblered, do you still try to be the beatdown game 1 since our maindeck removal isn't hugely available? I'm guessing we try to be the control post board? I read the article earlier by Flores that someone posted here, so I'm guessing with access to Searing Bloods and other burn to bring in we become the control, does this mean we sacrifice playing our little red men in favour of holding up for the burn?

That's all I can think of right now but it's a few scenarios I have found myself in recently and I always second guess myself so I figured I would ask here on how you would handle these situations.
Sorry if it's pretty "nooby" stuff but sometimes it's the basics that can catch people out, obviously myself included in this, and I'd just like a basic guideline that I can implement into my plays.

Thanks <br />:)

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Postby LP, of the Fires » Thu Aug 28, 2014 12:39 am

Foundry street is generally always the play. I'm sure I've deviated from that default once or twice, but for all intents and purposes, just lead with the denizen. If you have the other one drops in hand, I tend to lead with cackler on the play, firedrinker if I know I'm playing against burn game 1(the faster they kill it, the less damage I'm likely to take from it). On the draw, depends on what you're facing. If they're black, you may want to lead with cackler so they can't trade with a turn 2 rat for instance. If they're a caryatid deck, you obviously want to lead with satyr. Legion loyalist I generally only run out early if I have no other plays. He's much more devastating when sandbagged.

As for good attacks early game, first three turns of the game, most attacks are good that result in trades at worst. Exceptions are, say, if there's a scavenging ooze on board that you can't kill.

Vs. Control, I'm
generally willing to commit 3 guys into wrath mana or 1 attacker and a rabblemaster. If we're in the mid game and they have 5+mana up though, you have to jam dudes because you can't let them just rev without being under pressure. Force them to react.

Playing control is basically figuring out how to play around the most amount of cards possible when given a choice, and forcing them to have it when you're options are limited. In the early game for instance, if they have two mana up, you have to play around syncopate, azorius charm, and last breath. In the mid game, it's verdict and jace, then quicken+verdict and dissolve/last breath/counters/rev. Keeping this in mind helps you make more informed decisions like instead of playing your rabblemaster on 3, you attack first to bait charm getting them to tap out, then play rabblemaster post combat forcing them to have an answer. When you know what there options are, you can dictate the cards they can play.

In aggro mirrors with rabblered, and in general
unless you have a specific board plan set up, you want to be the aggressor when possible. This is of course predicated on your bouild though and draws and it's fairly common in red mirrors to switch roles throughout the game. Just make sure you do it on time.

For instance, against GW, you'll want to be the beatdown using your removal to clear a path for your creatures and maximize the damage they do and finishing off with a combination of burn and/or legion loyalist alpha strikes past tokens. In the mirror, it can change rapidaly depending on how much removal is lying around, who has legion loyalists and how has rabblemasters. Also, Burning-Tree Emissary is a fucked up card.
You gotta understand, I love the beatdown. I really do. I always have.

Beatdown is hard, though.


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Postby Platypus » Thu Aug 28, 2014 7:04 am

^Very solid advice.
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Postby DerWille » Thu Sep 04, 2014 5:18 am

Listen to everything that LP said.

Learn to calculate your clock. A clock is how many turns does your opponent have before they die based on your hand and board state. For example, if you have a Cackler and an Ash Zealot on the field and they have no blockers and are at 20 life, then they have a 5 turn clock. It'll take those two five swings before they kill your opponent.

When I play against control decks, I don't like to commit more than 4 to 6 power to the field. What I mean is that I add up all the power of my creatures on the field and lump together as one big number. This is a loose rule and not a strict one. The reason is because 4 to 6 power is most efficient in power to time. Take a look at this:

If my opponent is at 20 life
1 Power = 20 Turn Clock
2 Power = 10 Turn Clock
3 Power = 7 Turn Clock
4 Power = 5 Turn Clock
5 Power = 4 Turn Clock
6 Power = 4 Turn Clock
7 Power = 3 Turn Clock
8 Power
= 3 Turn Clock
9 Power = 3 Turn Clock
10 Power = 2 Turn Clock

Do you see how your clock doesn't improve very much once you get past 5 power? It takes more and more "extra" power to get a faster clock. I usually stop playing creatures once I have 4 to 6 power down. Instead I keep them in my hand unless my opponent removes them and then I just get it back up to that number. This lets me rebuild my board after a board wipe. However, don't blindly follow this. If you can play a creature right now and kill them, let's say you have 6 power on the field and a stormbreath dragon in hand when they're at 10, play it. Make them have an answer. If they can't, you can win that turn.

Also, learn to mulligan aggressively. When you look at your opening hand, run through what will you do over the next three turn and ask yourself, "Can this hand get me in a winning position or win the game against my opponent?" If it can't, mulligan. Keeping that hand will make you lose.

Unless a
creature or spell will affect combat, wait to play them in your second main. This makes your opponent play around more things even if you don't have them. For example, if you swing in with a 2 power guy and open mana, your opponent might not use his Last Breath because you could have Titan's Strength to counter it. This can let you sneak in 2 damage because he'll use it at the end of your turn, after you played your creatures.

If you had cast your creatures first, he would have killed the 2 power guy, and you wouldn't have gotten 2 damage.

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Postby Whole » Mon Sep 22, 2014 8:42 pm

Don't always run out Rabblemaster mainphase 1 to get a token either. I saw Tom Ross mainphase 2 a Rabblemaster tons of times versus Mono Black to force them to use removal on a 1 or 2 drop.
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Postby Shivan Token » Thu Sep 25, 2014 6:48 pm

Dear Red Mages,

I've decided to go with crimson mana for this standard, and I've finally decided to stop lurking.

Thx LP, MDU, Zem, Purp and all the others for the precious insights.

Last season I've settled on a rogue-ish UWR pyroburn deck that gave me a lot of satisfactions (missed top8 at a PTQ ending 6-3, aaaaargh)

I would like to discuss some aspects for an "innovative" RDW standard deck which I'm modestly brewing. (I'm an Izzet mage at heart.)

So:
1- how many artifacts should I play for being able to abuse Shrapnel blast? Someone says 12.
2- Tormenting voice: shouldn't this be an almost auto-include? I mean, it's basically a supa-cantrip. I'm ok with the tempo loss, IF i get to discard excess land - or 1 droppers in midgame, in search for more gas. With Magma Jet --> mega control on what I'm drawing. I like it. Why nobody seems to play it? You rely on natural drawing?
3-
Springleaf drum. let's discuss a little this bongo thing. Ramp, eventually fix, can keep back the "must attack" dudes. Opens for powerful plays BEFORE the time they could naturally occours on Turns 3\4 - BUT at an high price: a totally useless card after its function has been fulfilled (but see previous points for ideas about the destination of the bongo). So, even if I risk being burned at the stakes for blasphemy, what do you think of a mana rock in an aggro deck? Have you evere experienced a situation in which you would have traded a card in your hand for a mana and you could have won on turn 3 \ 4 on the spot?
4- Someone here has ever considered playing more than one Hall of Triumph?

please correct my english, if you feel like it

by the way: excellent quality of posts all through the forum
Last edited by Shivan Token on Fri Sep 26, 2014 9:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Shivan Token » Thu Sep 25, 2014 6:59 pm

answering to biadetic:

I'm more noob than you on aggro matter, but i would add:

1- beware the wraths at 3 mana: anger of the gods, the black one "all creatures get -2\-2". and also bile blight at cmc 2 could swipe multiples. So --> diversify threats, if chance arise
2- against decks that could cast those sorceries, I would prefer to play always the Hall of Triumph on T3 instead Rabble.

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Postby Platypus » Thu Sep 25, 2014 7:03 pm

Two Halls might be ok, but I wouldn't go above that. It's a legendary artifact (something I hadn't noticed myself before today), so you don't benefit from multiples.
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Postby Shivan Token » Fri Sep 26, 2014 9:35 am

Thx Playtipus!
Yes it's legendary. But I've noticed that Sligh variants with two HoT are already popping. I'll start testing with one


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