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Against the Odds: Revel in Riches (Pioneer)


Hello, everyone. Welcome to episode 328 of Against the Odds. Last week, we had a Pioneer alt-win-con Against the Odds poll, and Revel in Riches took home a pretty easy win. As such, we're heading to Pioneer today to see if we can have a huge Treasure-y combo turn to win with Revel in Riches on our upkeep! What are the odds of winning with Revel in Riches? What's the most spectacular way to get 10 Treasure tokens on the battlefield in a single turn? Let's get to the video and find out in today's Against the Odds; then, we'll talk more about the deck!

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Against the Odds: Revel in Riches

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The Deck

Revel in Riches was actually a pretty tricky card to build around. When it won the poll, my first attempts were fair Mardu and Rakdos Treasure decks that tried to build up Treasure tokens slowly with cards like Wily Goblin and Fable of the Mirror-Breaker (along with killing opponents' creatures) until we could eventually win with Revel in Riches. Unfortunately, the plan didn't really work that well—it was a bit slow, and most of the Treasure-producing cards are a bit underpowered. More importantly, the decks just weren't that interesting. It mostly felt like we were playing a weird Rakdos midrange deck and Revel in Riches rarely mattered. 

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Eventually, I realized that instead of trying to make one Treasure token a turn for 10 turns, to really make Revel in Riches work, we needed a way to make 10 (or more) Treasures in a single turn. While we can still get some incidental Treasure production from Revel in Riches and removal, this would be a secondary plan. Then, I remembered a Standard deck we played many, many years ago that used Smothering Tithe to make a ton of Treasures...

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As such, the main goal of our deck is to stick a Revel in Riches, stick a Smothering Tithe, and then start casting wheels like Emergency Powers and Commit // Memory. Things get crazy if we can do this while our opponent is tapped out (or tapped down) so they can't pay the two for Smothering Tithe. Take Emergency Powers, for example. We cast it for seven mana, and each player shuffles their hand and graveyard into their library and draws seven cards. This will give us seven Treasure tokens since our opponent won't be able to pay for Smothering Tithe, which essentially makes Emergency Powers free and then allows us to put another Revel in Riches or Smothering Tithe on the battlefield, thanks to addendum. Things get even crazier once we have two copies of Smothering Tithe on the battlefield since Emergency Powers and Commit // Memory will start generating mana, making 14 Treasure while only costing six or seven mana. Ideally, we'll be able to chain these cards together, making a big pile of Treasures, until we eventually find Peer into the Abyss to force our opponent to draw half of their deck, which should give us another 20 or 25 Treasure tokens—more than enough to win with Revel in Riches

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Of course, there is one problem with our plan: we can't just let our opponent draw half of their deck, pass the turn, and hope that Revel in Riches and our Treasures will survive until our upkeep. Odds are that our opponent will have drawn something to destroy Revel in Riches and ruin our deck. So, the final piece of the puzzle is Temporal Trespass, which we can cast to take an extra turn, skipping us right past our opponent's potential interaction and to our upkeep so that we can win with Revel in Riches!

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We need two things for our Revel in Riches / Smothering Tithe combo plan to work. First, we need a ton of mana since cards like Commit // Memory, Emergency Powers, and even just Revel in Riches are pretty expensive. For this, we turn to The Celestus to ramp us and also let us loot through our deck for combo pieces.

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The second thing we need is to stay alive long enough to get everything set up, which can be a challenge, considering how aggressive Pioneer decks can be. For this, we have a ton of sweepers, with the full four copies of Farewell and Supreme Verdict along with targeted removal in Fatal Push and Fateful Absence. We'll have a ton of dead cards if we run into control, which is a concern, although our sideboard is overloaded with counterspells, so we can drop all of our wraths and removal in games two and three. But against creature decks, this should (hopefully) buy us the time we need to get Revel in Riches and Smothering Tithe on the battlefield and get enough mana for Emergency Powers or Commit // Memory

The Matchups

In general, control is our worst matchup. It's horrible in game one since we have so much dead removal and sweepers, and while it improves in games two and three—when we can bring in Mystical Dispute, Dovin's Veto, and maybe Leyline of the Void—it's still tough to find a way to resolve things like Revel in Riches against control. On the other hand, we should have a pretty decent shot against creature decks thanks to the amount of removal and sweepers at our disposal, although I'm not sure we're favored overall, mostly because our deck is really expensive. So, there's always a risk that we'll have a slow hand and get run over before we can get things like Farewell online to deal with our opponent's board.

The Odds

Record-wise, Revel in Riches wasn't great. We ended up going 1-4 in our Pioneer league, although we did manage to pick up a couple of additional game wins along the way. Thankfully, our one win was pretty spectacular, with us pulling off the full combo, chaining wheels through our deck, and eventually ending up with enough Treasures to win on our upkeep with Revel in Riches. Overall, Revel in Riches didn't feel all that competitive in Pioneer. In part, this is because UW Control is the most popular deck in the format, which means decks are packing a ton of control hate and most of the cards that are good against control—especially discard spells—are very good against our deck as well. Still, the deck is hilarious when it goes off and can do some really sweet things, so even though we're unlike to see it at the next Pioneer Pro Tour, it is a great competitive-ish option to play for fun!

Conclusion

Anyway, that's all for today. 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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