Oldschool tales 2 by Francesco Delfino




For those who have not much time to waste, here an attempt to write a "primer" of the deck (I'm testing it for a couple of months, i know it's not enough)  otherwise you can click here to jump directly to the tournament report "Oldschool MKM Series Milano 2017".



Eureka primer


The list that I brought to the MKM series tournament in Milan


List (60):

// 11 Artifact

1 Black Lotus

1 Chaos Orb

1 Mana Vault

2 Mirror Universe

1 Mox Emerald

1 Mox Jet

1 Mox Pearl

1 Mox Ruby

1 Mox Sapphire

1 Sol Ring


// 15 Creature

4 Birds of Paradise

4 Shivan Dragon

1 Lord of the Pit

3 Force of Nature

1 Nicol Bolas

1 Vesuvan Doppelganger

1 Mahamoti Djinn


// 5 Enchantment

2 Concordant Crossroads

2 Sylvan Library

1 Moat


// 1 Instant

1 Ancestral Recall


// 17 Land

4 City of Brass

1 Forest

1 Strip Mine

4 Taiga

2 Savannah

1 Bayou

2 Tropical Island

1 Library of Alexandria

1 Diamond Valley


// 11 Sorcery

1 Braingeyser

1 Demonic Tutor

4 Eureka

1 Mind Twist

1 Regrowth

1 Time Walk

1 TimeTwister

1 Wheel of Fortune


Sideboard  (15)


// 2 Artifact

2 Winter Orb


// 2 Enchantment

1 Circle of Protection: Red

1 Concordant Crossroads


// 9 Instant

2 Disenchant

2 Blue Elemental Blast

2 Red Elemental Blast

1 Avoid Fate

2 Divine Offering


// 2 Sorcery

1 Balance

1 Wrath of God



 // 11 Artifact


-        8 accelerators (5 Mox, Black Lotus, Mana Vault, Sol Ring):

The deck has to explode in the early rounds, it's important not to give too many cards to the opponents (even if ours have an higher power level), and to prevent him from taking over control board. Aggro decks are a problem for us so we need to be fast and furious.


-        1 Chaos Orb

Universal removal, a must have.


-        2 Mirror Universe

This card has synergies with Sylvian Library and also with Forces of Nature and Lord of the Pit: we can decide arbitrarily to suffer damage and then use the power of the Mirror, killing the opponent for less than 20 damage.


// 15 Creature


-        4 Birds of Paradise

We play a penta-color deck... birds are often the meal of Lord of The Pit or a tribute for the Abyss. 


-        3 Force of Nature

The creature with the best ratio casting cost/power. Three is the perfect number: the cost of maintaining it can be lethal for us if we have not in play Diamond Valley or Mirror Universe.


-        1 Lord of the Pit

Flying creatures are the best... Lord has also trample!


-        1 Nicol Bolas

We could play two of them. Unfortunately it suffers legendary rule and can be destroyed by Red and Blue Elemental Blast.


-        1 Vesuvan Doppelganger

Multiforme creature.  Sometimes it happened to copy Forces of Nature or Lord of the Pit, and then, at the next upkeep phase, change Vesuvan into another creature, like a Bird of Paradise (to avoid excessive maintenance costs).


-        4 Shivan Dragon e 1 Mahamoti Djinn

In this list I chose four dragons and only one genius, using 4 Taiga and only 2 Tropical Island. I had not problems casting blue magics (Braingeyser has twice specifically but often we play when we have at least 4 or 5 mana). The only advantage of Mahamoti is the ability to block and kill Juzam Djinn. The Red Elemental Blast is widespread, more than Blue.


// 5 Enchantment


-        2 Concordant Crossroads

With Concordant we can surprise the opponent. Perhaps this card should be played in three copies when the field is full of "The Deck" and "anti" The Deck (not fast aggro). It destroys The Abyss! (Try to delay his descent not to have it destroyed by other enchant world).


-        2 Sylvan Library

Card advantage! It helps us to find Eureka, more creatures, or power card like Mind Twist. In combo with Mirror Universe can be devastating.


-        1 Moat

In this tournament i inserted one maindeck, fearing aggro-artifact and ur burn deck. In these matches up Moat is a decisive card (they don't use white and disenchant, Chaos Orb is the only removal for enchantments). It blocks our Forces of Nature, but we have enough other flying creatures.


// 17 Land


-        14 coloured lands (4 City of Brass, 1 Forest, 4 Taiga, 2 Savannah, 1 Bayou, 2 Tropical Island)

Selection on the basis of main deck and sideboard.


-        1 Library of Alexandria e 1 Strip Mine

Cards that do not need explanation. The strip is useful against the same Library and Maze of Ith.


-        1 Diamond Valley

A lot of tricks with the Valley: blocking with Birds and then sacrifice it to gain one life point, sacrificing creatures of which we can not pay the cost of maintaining during upkeep or gaining life waiting to close with Eureka later. Sometimes i put it out against control decks but i was not always happy of this choice.


// 1 Instant


-        1 Ancestral Recall

The most representative card of MTG. But Mind Twist is stronger in this oldschool format.


// 11 Sorcery


-        4 Eureka

Key card! Not only to put into play creatures but often lands (to play maybe a Time Walk) and Mirror Universe.


-        1 Braingeyser

The deck develops a lot of mana quickly... this card is a must have.


-        1 Demonic Tutor e 1 Mind Twist

They go in pairs in all decks (for this reason Mind Twist should be banned)


-        1 Regrowth

To pick up anything useful.


-        1 Time Walk

Two attacks or Mirror Universe combo.


-        1 TimeTwister e 1 Wheel of Fortune

Two "draw7" to replenish the hand, control decks usually use counters against them. 


Sideboard  (15)


// 2 Artifact

2 Winter Orb

Winter Orb can block activations of Tome and of Disrupting Scepter. I'm testing it but seems not fit very well cause avoid me to pay upkeep cost of Force of Nature.


// 2 Enchantment

1 Circle of Protection: Red

Play it against ur burn or atog/aggro artifact.


1 Concordant Crossroads

Add it every time i  play against control decks that may use Balance or Wrath of God (sorceries) in their turn. Less useful against aggro decks because we  do not always have the certainty of closing instant.


// 9 Instant

2 Disenchant

Excellent card against Moat, Winter Orb, Circles and Underworld Dreams. The best removal (after Chaos Orb).


2 Blue Elemental Blast

Fundamental card to defend ourselves from Blood Moon, Troll, Atog, Lightning and Fireball.


2 Red Elemental Blast

Best answer to Control Magic, Efreet Serendib, power nine (blue), Counterspell or other counters.


1 Avoid Fate

Instant that probably we should play into two copies. We can counter Control Magic, Spirit Link, Swords to Plowshares and Disenchant and then Red and Blue blast (used to destroy a permanent after Eureka).


2 Divine Offering

Excellent answer against Artifact Aggro and versus the strongest card against our deck: Forcefield (and Disrupting Scepter).


// 2 Sorcery

1 Balance

Card useful (maybe not optimal) can save in some situations because we can sacrifice any Birds of Paradise with Diamond Valley to have no creatures in play.


1 Wrath of God

Definitive solution to stop opponent.



Other cards



For the maindeck:



I removed it during deck construction, it remains one of the strongest card of the format. Useful to restart, picking up some piece of combo or an Ancestral Recall. 


Mana Drain

I decided to remove it from the main deck after several tests. It can counter a Mind Twist and can produce two or three mana to play early one Shivan. I decided to play an aggressive list that does not think, at least at first, about how to protect the combo.



With this manabase is a substitute to Mana Drain. We can copy our Eureka (while a counter is on stack) or a good spell of our opponent.


Llanowar Elves

There are some lists with a couple of Llanowar main deck, I decided to play 11 creatures (maybe one is good). They are excellent blockers or sacrificial tribute to Abyss and Lord of The Pit.


Colossus of Sardia

It has trample and often with two 9/9 we can not close directly. It do not untap normally and go under Disenchant well as Swords to Plowshares.


Time Vault

I have to test this card main deck. This is a combo deck, playing two rounds consecutively could be useful.



This card has synergies with both Time Vault that with Colossus of Sardis, try it only if you play 4 Colossus and 1 Twiddle.


Palladia Mors

It has trample and is green, red and white, colors well represented by our manabase.



Not stronger than Vesuvan but costs one mana less.


Juzam Djinn

The card is present in some lists with more Bayou. Of course we do not like suffer one point damage during maintenance but it is another creature with a low casting cost.


Yawgmoth demon

I want to test it. The black , green and white creatures are very strong (they dont suffer ReB and Beb). In this deck deck we already play 11 artifacts, with a couple of Demons could also decide to insert a Triskelion or a Tetravus.



The most adaptable creature. The best sacrificial creature.


Sword of the Ages

The big absent. Maybe I have not tested enough against The Deck. It comes into play tapped and therefore must be played in advance. Often our opponent may decide to remove, during g2, some Disenchant and for this reason this card should be played in sideboard.



For the sideboard:


Maze of Ith

Sideboard card against zoo and aggro.



You can choose the way of playing less creatures and protect them better or put them in a position to make them definitive.


In the Eye of Chaos

Ancestral Recall is the only istant (in sideboard the choice is wide). It is another enchant world against Abyss.



An enchant world useful for us to save time and drawing cards blocking the opponent's aggro plan.



Another answer to Control Magic and Spirit Link (but we play also Sylvan Library).


Nether Void

Eureka costs 4 mana, playing a lot of accelerators our race to seven mana could be fast.


Mana Short

Card for combo decks to protect their game. Casting cost is three: you can play it at the end of the opponent's turn and then play Eureka safely.


Animate Dead

Can be useful to recover, with only two mana, a creature in the graveyard (perhaps sacrificed with Diamond Valley before it is exiled by Swords To Plowshares).



Classic card against aggro deck. But we still not like suffer damage.


Dark Hearth of the Wood

Oxygen for some turns, we can evaluate it against aggro decks with a lot of shooting. 


Nevinyrral’s Disk

A definitive solution in certain situations, we must consider that often, during g2 and g3, our opponents take off their removals for artifacts. It is a problem for our accelerators but it is a solution for matches ending in late game.


Swords to Plowshares

Removal that allows us to gain time. Could be needful against Guardian Beast, Ali From Cairo and The Preacher.


Steal Artifact

There are many artifacts that are problematic. Stealing a Tome always has its charm, but the card remains marginal utility.


All Hallow’s Eve

In g2 and g3 may be an unexpected card that allows us to restart after a Wrath of God but is related to a completely different deck (Reanimator).


Energy Flux

Someone tried it but i think with little success. We have to play very fast and we have 11 artifact accelerators. In the middle game it's not a problem for our opponent to maintain a tome or a forcefield with two mana. 


Mana Flare e Fireball (and Channel)

Interesting cards to be tested in side as Plan B: create as much mana for casting fast creatures and shoot unexpected Fireball.


Report Oldschool MKM Series Milan 2017


Oldschool tournament MKM Series Milan

Arecco, Megu, Braida and myself, the best travel companions. The good Braida has lent me most of the cards in the deck. I have changed the list and have to replace the Tropical and the Mahamoti with Taiga and Shivan. 25 participants including friends from Ravenna, Turin and some  foreign players.






Turn 1 – Cirillo Davide UWb skies

G1. I know my opponent, but not what he plays. It begins with a Mox Pearl and an Island playing then a Savannah Lions. For a few rounds he has only three mana sources but unfortunately i haven't Eureka in hand and the lion meanwhile brings me to 12 points; he plays a Serra Angel with Black Lotus and then decides to use his Chaos Orb on my Bird of Paradise (unique creature that can block). So it happens, I go down to 7 life (thanks to +1 Diamond Valley) but by that time I reach six mana that allow me to cast a beast per turn. He plays another creature: an Efreet of Serendib. I'm still alive thanks to a Mahamoti, 2 Shivan and the Diamond Valley. A Force of Nature, with the rapidity of Concordant, strikes him to 12, but i'm forced to sacrifice it cause I cannot pay its upkeep cost. Finally I find another Forces of Nature and one Shivan who decide in my favor the race (he will be forced to block).


I decide to play a little less explosive removing one Shivan (expecting Blue Elemental Blast) and a Force of Nature, expecting from him a Moat (i had not seen Mishra).

 -1 Moat, -2 Mirror Universe, -1 Shivan Dragon, -1 Force of Nature;

+1 Concordant Crossroads, +1 Avoid Fate, +2 ReB, +1 Disenchant, 1 Wrath of God, + 1 Balance.


G2. He starts with a land and Tax. Fortunately I can keep without lands: Mox Emerald, Birds of Paradise and a Sol Ring can provide me (in three turns) mana necessary and sufficient for Eureka. He decides not to play another land and i gain a turn drawing another Birds of Paradise. As soon as he decides to start with his aggro plan (casting an Efreet Serendib) I play an Eureka (with him tapped out) putting into play only two Shivan. He puts in play a Control Magic... I play in response an Avoid Fate (we discover together that it can counter an aurea spell!) In the next turn he replays with another Control Magic and this time is able to "steal" one Shivan. I will have to fight it with mine and then i'll be under the race of a Serra Angel. I will be forced to cast a Wrath of God that will kill even my two birds: i will not be able to cast any other creatures from hand and i'll die because of a second creature.

+1 Disenchant;

-1 Wrath of God.

G3. I start, so I decide to remove the Wrath of God to be faster. The match is long, I go down to 5 point life and then up and down again. A topdeck of Balance will allow me to destroy its Serra and to draw the match (he will steal me a turn with a Time Walk).

Result 1-1 – point 1


Turn 2 – Morrone Andrea UWg control Titania’s Song

Usually i like to test new decks as my opponent does. This time we surprise each other; he does it with an artifact control that I can not decode.

G1. In game one he cannot get in control cause he sees too late a Winter Orb, I figured he was playing his "pet deck" with the combo Cyclopean Tomb + Karma. He resists few rounds using Sword to Plowshares against two creatures and bringing me to 29 life points, but the next turn I'm able to close with a Force of Nature and another creature.


I'm not sure how use sideboard cause I know he can transform his deck in one aggro with a lot of creatures. I decide to remove: the geyser because a little 'too mana intensive with its Winter Orb; 2 Mirror and Diamond (no pressure), and a Force of Nature, expecting some Moats.

+2 Divine Offering, +2 Disenchant, +1 Concordant Crossroads, +2 ReB, +1 Avoid Fate;

-2 Mirror Universe, -1 Moat, -1 Braingeyser, -1 Force of Nature, -1 Diamond Valley.


G2. I try to go fast into combo with Eureka a couple of times, hoping that he is playing Flash Counter (useless against sorcery) but actually he plays Power Sink and stops me some turns. I can bring him to 8 points with some creature, but will be too late when he'll be in total control (3 Howling Mine and 2 Winter Orb on board).


G3. I conceded game two without knowing his finisher; there is not a lot of time but my deck may close the game in few minutes. G3 will be a hard-fought game (even if he decides to start without lands but with some Mox). I can not remember much except that we draw for end time: me at 3 life points and he at 5. He will show me one card from his hand: Titania's Song, wow that a finisher! A good point against an excellent player.


Result 1-1 – points 2


Turn 3 – Johansson Mikael UGW Bant

Paired down against a cute foreign player who is at zero points.

G1. The first game is surreal for him: I cannot understand what he is playing deck, he doesn't cast anything other than some mana accelerators. I close the game with a Shivan attacking 4 times.

I have no idea about sideboarding, i guess he plays a control deck cause i have not seen creatures so I insert a Winter Orb and take off the Moat.

+1 Disenchant, +1 ReB, +1 Avoid Fate, +1 Winter Orb;

-1 Mirror Universe, -1 Moat, -1 Force of Nature.


G2. After some turns of "farming" i play a Sylvan Library and I pass. He will play another Sylvan taking back from graveyard a Swords to Plowshares with Regrowth. The next turn he plays an Erhnam Djinn going tapped out. In my turn I decided to draw 3 cards with Sylvan going to 8 life and then after another turn to 4. I'll be able to close the game with an Avoid Fate played to save one of my "quick" creatures.


Result 2-0 – points 5


Turn 4 – Patruno Max RBu Troll disco (lands disrupter) + dreams combo

Decisive match against Max, a very good and friendly player. I think he plays, as usual, a lof of hate versus The Deck.


G1. I fear the presence of Hypnotic Specter card that -unlike a Savannah Lion- can destroys hand and give much troubles. He plays an Underworld Dreams and I go down to 17 points. A Chaos Orb on his Dreams allows me to gain time taking me away from the "draw7" risk. A Sedge Troll sends me to 11 and then to 9. He has not cards to block my plan and then is the time of the feast of the Lord of the Pit and its diners. 


While we think about the sideboard we agree that "The Deck" players were also lucky today not to meet him. I played his deck during the Fishliver tournament and i know mechanicals pretty well.


+2 BeB, +1 ReB, +1 Divine Offering, +2 Disenchant;

-1 Sylvan Library -1 Timetwister, -1 Braingeyser, -1 Mahamoti Djinn.


G2. I play confident, keeping a not perfect hand but that still has chances. He puts in play an Underworld Dreams than i try to take off the triple black with my Strip Mine but the turn later he plays another Dreams with another land. I die with a "Draw7" with me at 12 life points.


G3. I play for a long time under the effect of Dreams. I am fortunate, i can counter a Sedge Troll and a Blood Moon with two Blue Elemental Blast. I have to cast a Shivan to put a little of pressure and force him to use the Nevinyrral's Disk. I go down to 10 points before casting an Eureka and close the game.


Result 2-1 – points 8


Turn 5 – Jacopo Mariani RB Dreams combo

Everyone more or less already knows the decks of opponents, at least generally. I'm pretty confidant of the match up after Max, but i know the risk of playing a combo deck.


G1. At the beginning his deck does not put particular pressure on me: I suffer a loss of 1 life per turn until I go down to 17. Then, thanks to an Eureka I put into play two Shivan and Mirror Universe and he puts into play an Abyss. In my next turn I voluntary tap three City of Brass and then I exchange life bringing me up to 20 and him down to 14. One Shivan has not been enough to close the game, fortunately i have a Regrowth in hand and a Birds of Paradise in the graveyard so one turn later i can save my Shivan from Abyss.


+2 BeB, +2 Divine Offering, +2 Disenchant;

-1 Wheel of Fortune, -1 Timetwister, -1 Braingeyser, -1 Mahamoti Djinn.


G2. The second game is very similar to the first, I suffer some damages of City of Brass going down to 15 after having earned some life with Divine Offering. I can place on board with Eureka: Nicol Bolas, Force of Nature and two Mirror Universe; he puts in play: an Abyss and an Underworld Dreams. At his pass, in my upkeep, I put in order effects: voluntary suffer 8 points from Force of Nature, going to 7, I keep the cost of Nicol Bolas, sacrifice the Force of Nature to the effect of Abyss and then exchange the points going up to 9 and making him fall to 7, just the strengths of the powerful lord of the dragons.


Result 2-0 – points 11


I finish the Swiss with the same points of who made 3-0 with two intentional draws. I played all the games and the deck is "undefeated"... great!


Top 8 – Morri Daniele “The Deck” (Mirror Universe combo)

First match of the top8 with Daniele, another challenge with him after some recent tournaments. I tested online Eureka against "The Deck" and I think the match up is pretty balanced, at least in g1.


G1. The first game is quite balanced, but I'm not able to be very fast. One Shivan survives a turn and I can bring him to 14. I go up to 25 and then to 32 after another removal on a Force of Nature. He now is in control mode with a lot of lands, several tomes and manages to close with Mirror Universe, Time Walk and Fireball. 


I take off all the cards that help me the most against aggro and try to enter Winter Orb to block his tome and disrupting scepter. Red Elemental Blast to win counterwars.

+2 ReB, +1 Concordant Crossroads, +1 Avoid Fate, +2 Disenchant, +2 Winter Orb;

-1 Moat, -2 Mirror Universe, -1 Diamond Valley, -1 Mahamoti Djinn.


G2. After a round of building and destruction of play (with his Mind Twist followed by my Timetwister) the match is decided by my Braingeyser resolved when he has not counters. He exiles a Force of Nature, but then I can increase the race dropping creatures by hand and destroying an Abyss with my Concordant Crossroads.


G3. Before we start we decide to split the prizes. He starts with the Library of Alexandria, I have a good hand which lacks only the fourth mana source. Unfortunately I will not see it, and I shall be able to play Eureka only when he will have the blue double for counter. Later I'll try again another Eureka successfully dropping three creatures but he will now have the hand full of removals, double Swords to Plowshares and Red Elemental Blast. I concede the game shortly after with him that cast a Disrupting Scepter.



Was the second tournament with Eureka! This list with red and Shivan is competitive. I will cut the 2 Winter Orb and the Wrath of God, and i'll insert at least one Sword of the Ages, an Animate Dead and Nether Void (or Mana Short).
The sideboard should be always designed according to field expected, probably I will return to play the Moat side and 3 main Concordant Crossroads.

At the next tournament!