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Against the Odds: Rashmi, Eternities Crafter (Standard)


Hello, everyone. Welcome to episode sixty of Against the Odds! Last week on our Against the Odds poll, it was one of our Standard options—Rashmi, Eternities Crafter—sneaking out a victory over Saheeli Rai and Mortal Combat in Modern. Meanwhile, Animation Module and Dwarves in Legacy came in at the bottom of the pile and will drop off this week's poll for new options. As a result, this week we are heading to Kaladesh Standard to see if we can cascade our way to victory with the spicy Simic mythic Rashmi, Eternities Crafter!

Anyway, let's get to the videos, but first a quick reminder. If you enjoy the Against the Odds series and the other video content here on MTGGoldfish, make sure to subscribe to the MTGGoldfish YouTube Channel.

Against the Odds: Rashmi (Deck Tech)

Against the Odds: Rashmi (Games)

The Deck

The challenge of building around Rashmi, Eternities Crafter is twofold. First, Rashmi, Eternities Crafter is extremely fragile, being a four-CMC creature with only three toughness, which means it dies to just about every removal spell in Standard. Plus, to really see what Rashmi, Eternities Crafter can do, we need her to sit on the battlefield for a few turns generating value. As a result, we need to make sure we have plenty of ways to protect our namesake card. Second, Rashmi, Eternities Crafter doesn't really have an "I win the game" mode. While she can generate enough value that we do win the game, rather than building towards one big play, our deck is more designed to get as much value out of Rashmi, Eternities Crafter as possible every single turn. With this in mind, the end result is a deck that looks to play almost exclusively at instant speed, with the help of flash creatures, and is overloaded on ways to keep our Rashmi, Eternities Crafter alive for maximum value. 

The Combo

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Rashmi, Eternities Crafter is a weird card for Against the Odds because rather than doing one big, flashy thing, Rashmi, Eternities Crafter generates some amount of value every turn. While Rashmi, Eternities Crafter might look like she has cascade, her ability is really a lot different and much harder to abuse (since we always only get the top card of our library, rather than revealing cards until we find something we can cast). In the worst case, Rashmi, Eternities Crafter draws us an extra card every turn, which in our deck (hopefully) means two each turn cycle because we can trigger it on our opponent's turn as well. In the best case, Rashmi, Eternities Crafter also allows us to cheat on mana by casting some of the cards we reveal for free. 

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Mind's Dilation is our main combo piece, but it's extremely high variance. Sometimes, it sits on the battlefield and generates a ton of value; other times, it does nothing. The main idea is we get the enchantment on the battlefield along with our Rashmi, Eternities Crafter and then, whenever our opponent casts a card, we cast the top card of our opponent's deck for free (as long as it's not a land), which triggers Rashmi, Eternities Crafter as well, so we get to cast a card from the top of our deck for free if it costs less than the top card of our opponent's deck. The downside is that nearly half of the time, Mind's Dilation will hit a land off the top of our opponent's deck and then it does literal nothing, but when we get lucky and hit a non-land, we at worst get to play a free card and draw a card, and at best play two cards for free. 

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Part the Waterveil is one of our best ways to generate free value with Rashmi, Eternities Crafter. If we get a Rashmi, Eternities Crafter on the battlefield, we can cast a Part the Waterveil, hopefully cast something for free, and then get an extra turn. During our extra turn, we can cast a second Part the Waterveil, hopefully cast something else for free, and then use all of our free value to win the game during our second extra turn!

Protection

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Spell Queller and Void Grafter do double duty in our deck. On one hand, they are ways of protecting our Rashmi, Eternities Crafter from removal spells, which is important because as we talked about before, Rashmi, Eternities Crafter dies to just about everything. On the other hand, they are also flash creatures, which allows us to trigger our Rashmi, Eternities Crafter on our opponent's turn as well as our turn. As for Blossoming Defense, it's simply the cheapest way to keep Rashmi, Eternities Crafter alive against removal. If there is one thing we learned during our games, it's that there is no middle ground with Rashmi, Eternities Crafter. She either stays alive and our opponent drowns in our value and scoops in short order, or she immediately dies and our deck does nothing. These cards help make sure it's the latter more often than the former. 

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The rest of the deck is some card draw to help us find Rashmi, Eternities Crafter and a bit of removal in Stasis Snare, all of which can be played at instant speed to help us trigger Rashmi, Eternities Crafter twice each turn cycle. Servant of the Conduit helps us ramp into our Rashmi, Eternities Crafter a little bit faster, and Torrential Gearhulk give us another instant-speed threat. That said, one of our biggest payoffs is Elder Deep-Fiend, which does everything we want with Rashmi, Eternities Crafter. On one hand, it has a high converted mana cost—actually, the highest in our entire deck—which means that as long as we don't hit a land, we can cast anything we reveal off Rashmi, Eternities Crafter for free. On the other hand, it doesn't really cost as much as its converted mana cost suggests, because we can always emerge it into play on the cheap. We can also play it at instant speed to get an extra Rashmi, Eternities Crafter trigger during our opponent's turn, and it can even protect Rashmi, Eternities Crafter by tapping down our opponent's lands the turn before we resolve our powerful mythic!

The Matchups

The good news is that our deck is actually fairly powerful, and unlike some Against the Odds decks, most of our support cards are actually playable, which means we can randomly win some games just by casting Void Grafter, Spell Queller, and Elder Deep-Fiend. That said, our goal is to win with Rashmi, Eternities Crafter, not with a bunch of random cards, and just how good Rashmi, Eternities Crafter ends up being is very dependent on the matchup. 

Basically, our best matchups are against decks that aren't playing a lot of removal. While we have ample protection if we manage to untap with Rashmi, Eternities Crafter, a lot of the time we just have to cast a Rashmi, Eternities Crafter and hope that she survives one turn so we can start leaving up protection. If our opponent is playing a control deck that's overloaded with removal, the odds of our Rashmi, Eternities Crafter surviving even one turn are pretty low. On the other hand, against UW Midrange or Temur Emerge, there's a reasonable chance that our opponent doesn't have a removal spell, giving us time to untap and use Rashmi, Eternities Crafter to value our opponent out of the game. 

The Odds

Technically, we played five matches and won three, but this is a little bit deceiving since one of our matches was against a WB Allies deck that scooped the entire match in game one, so discounting this match, we won two of four matches, giving us a 50% match win percentage. As for games, all of our matches went to three games, so we actually played 13 and won six, giving us a game win percentage of about 46%. 

Maybe the most disappointing part of the entire series of games was our experience with Rashmi, Eternities Crafter herself. In just about every game, she either died immediately or she lived and our opponent scooped to the first or second Rashmi, Eternities Crafter trigger. As a result, we had very few games where Rashmi, Eternities Crafter just sat on the battlefield and did cool things. 

Vote for Next Week's Deck

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Conclusion

Anyway, that's all for today. Don't forget to vote for next week's deck! As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, opinions, and suggestions in the comments, and you can reach me on Twitter @SaffronOlive, or at SaffronOlive@MTGGoldfish.com. 


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