My favorite Odyssey card has always been Braids, Cabal Minion. I've been trying to think of different viable configurations for the deck, and Ive come up with two. I don't know whether or not Braids can be a viable decktype, but I want to make a Braids deck nonetheless.
Both deck versions are for extended.
BW Braids Control
4 Swords to Plowshares
4 Spectral Lynx
4 Nether Shadow
4 Ashen Ghoul
3 Braids, Cabal Minion
3 Cursed Scroll
4 Gerrard's Verdict
4 Rishadan Port
The basic premise of this deck, and I imagine any Braids deck, would be to maintain permanant advantage until you can drop Braids.
Obviously, the most effective permanant for Braids to "eat" is land. Between Wastelands, Ports and Vindicates, you should be able to keep them at a lower land count than you until you are able to safely drop Braids to keep them permanantly denied of mana.
Ashen Ghouls and Nether Shadows obviously combo well with Braids, and if you are able to get them to recur, you never have to worry about losing any of your other permanants to her.
Clearly, the opponant is going to want to counter or remove Braids as soon as possible, but if she even stays out for two or three turns, she can be devistating.
If nothing else, Braids can be seen as a 4cc Land destruction spell.
Should the opponant get more land than you at any point, Tithe helps fuel Braids, or even get you some life with Verdict, if need be.
With all the green floating around extended, the Lynx are very good, and STP is useful as always.
Plus with the extremely low land count of decks such as Grow, even destroying one or two of their lands can mean the end of the game.
Finally, the opponant casting Gush with Braids in play is often suicide as well, since it puts them very far behind in permanants.
The only major downfall of the deck that I can see is that there is no efficient kill card. Negators would be nice, but playing them with Braids can leave you with nothing on the board very quickly.
The second version of the deck is B/G, using the speed of green to get Braids out very quickly and putting an early cap on the mana and creature development of the opponent.
Casting Plow Under while Braids is in play is often the end of the game as well.
3 Treetop Village
1 Undiscovered Paradise
3 Braids, Cabal Minion
3 Diabolic Edict
4 River Boa
4 Wall of Roots
4 Birds of Paradise
3 Plow Under
3 Yavimaya Elder
2 Gaea's Blessing
4 Pernicious Deed
The main advantages of this deck over the other version are the speed with which a game ending spell such as Braids, Plow Under or Spiritmonger can be played. The Spiritmonger alone is great because it can be such a game breaker, often killing Morphlings.
Deed doesn't really combo well with the birds and walls, but their main purpose is to get out a larger threat very quickly. After that, they can be sacrificed to Braids.
Yavimaya Elder is great with Braids as well, effectively keeping her fed for 3 turns with his own sacrifice and the 2 lands he allows you to get.
Im not really sure which of these decks is better as I dont have much time to playtest, but I was wondering if anyone else had thoughts about trying to make a Braids deck or what might be good in such a deck.
Any comments are appreciated.
I dont know how good the B/G deck is, but i have to try it in apprentice, it really looks cool.
FOr the B/W version, play mother of runes to protect your braids. The biggest weakness of the decktype is her vulnerability.
THe B/G version may be better thanks to deed, but it should definitely run 1-2 dust bowls, particularly with the elders present. You might consider a squirrel nest here as a way to maintain your braids lock.
Seems like this is a variation of the old Smokestack decks. Stack has an advantage in that you can always get one permanant ahead of the other guy, but it's a turn slower too. Stack is also an artifact, so keeping it around and getting it back is a bit harder (there are lots more ways to get critters back from the GY and search for them). Stack is also colorless, so your mana is not a problem.
Seems like cards like Spirit Mirror and greener pastures could provide things to sack to Braids or the stack. Rancor is a favorite, and in a Braids deck, it could even be on her...
The problem with Rancor is that you cannot sac enchantments to Braids, otherwise it would be an amazingly powerful combo.
I suppose a B/U version of Braids would also work, although I haven't decided what would go in it yet.
I think Recoil could be very powerful with her, though.
Well, spirit mirror would work. Perhaps using Rector? Sac rector to Braids, bring out spirit mirror or Greener Pastures? White also allows Seal, Tithe, Armageddon. Hmmm.
Sac Rector to Phyrexian Tower for BB, bring out Spirit Mirror, use BB and two more to play Braids. This could be as soon as turn... 5? Probably not fast enough.
Anyone else have any thoughts?
It seems to be the consensus that the BG version is stronger. What else could improve that deck?