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Against the Odds: Ultimate Superfriends

Hello everyone and welcome to episode thirteen of Against the Odds. As you know, we didn't have a poll last week because I had something special to test out. Don't worry, we'll have a poll at the end of the article with both Eater of Days and Dragon Tempest. The deck I had in mind is Ultimate Superfriends

Planeswalkers are the face of modern Magic. They are typically the chase cards in their set. They dominate the lore and story, and they are often extremely powerful. There have been times where people have played decks built primarily around planeswalkers, and these decks are sometimes called "Superfriends." I'm of the opinion these decks don't go far enough. I mean, if playing some planeswalkers is cool, and playing a lot of planeswalkers is really cool, what happens when you play all the planeswalkers and only planeswalkers? That is what we are going to figure out today!

We'll talk more about Ultimate Superfriends in a minute. First let's get to the videos. A quick reminder: If you enjoy Against the Odds and other video content here on MTGGoldfish, make sure to subscribe to the MTGGoldfish Youtube Channel to keep up with the latest and greatest.

Against the Odds: Ultimate Superfriends Intro

Against the Odds: Ultimate Superfriends Games

The Deck

Here's the criteria I set out when building Ultimate Superfriends. First, the deck could only contain planeswalkers and lands. Second, it had to contain at least one of each planeswalker. While there are three different versions of Nissa, I didn't play all three, but I had to have at least one. Finally, none of the flip-planeswalkers from Magic Origins were allowed since they don't enter the battlefield as planeswalkers. To show off as many different planeswalkers as possible, the deck also ended up being singleton, except for lands.

My biggest worry about Ultimate Superfriends was we were severely lacking two- and three-mana plays. The only two-mana planeswalker in all of Magic is Tibalt, the Fiend-Blooded. There are only five three-mana planeswalkers. A lot of the time we will do nothing on turns one though three. In Modern, this is a tough sell since most decks can kill by turn four. Plus, some planeswalkers are absolutely horrible in an all-planeswalkers deck. 

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Tezzeret the Seeker is clearly the worst card in our deck. It is literally a five-mana do nothing since all of his abilities require an artifact. In fact, I think the best thing Tezzeret the Seeker can do is randomly be discarded by Tibalt, the Fiend-Blooded. When a card's best use involves Tibalt, it's obviously not very good. Domri Rade isn't much better, since all of his abilities require a creature. At least there's some chance our other planeswalkers can make creature tokens. Regardless, these cards are very bad in our deck, but playing them was a sacrifice we had to make.

While I had some serious doubts about this deck, I wanted to at least give it a try. Flavor wise, it is exactly what a deck called Ultimate Superfriends should be — stuffed with as many different planeswalkers as possible. That said, I'm not beyond hedging my bets, so I built a second versions of Ultimate Superfriends in case things went incredibly poorly. 

The biggest difference between Ultimate Superfriends and Slightly Less Ultimate Superfriends is the latter is (slightly) less all-in on the planeswalkers. The biggest change is that the second build of the deck gets to play ten signets, which speeds up the deck by an entire turn. In theory, this increase in speed might allow us to win a game or two since the biggest problem with the first build was a lack of early game plays. 

The other change is the addition of a sideboard containing Thoughtseize, Supreme Verdict, Path to Exile, and Negate. While I really want to win a game or two with a deck solely of planeswalkers, these cards are a last resort. If we absolutely need to sideboard to pull off a win, we'll do it, even if it is cheating. 

The Matchups

Obviously anything that is aggressive or can go-wide is a big problem. While we have planeswalkers that can deal with one big creature, stopping Lingering Souls tokens is a daunting (impossible) task. The same is true of combo decks. Since we don't have any instant speed interaction, the Splinter Twin combo is devastating, and we are nowhere near fast enough to win against Storm, Bloom Titan, Tron, or Scapeshift

While I'm not sure it's really a good matchup, our best matchups is probably against a control deck. If we can live long enough to start playing a planeswalker every turn, and we're not too far behind on board, the deck has a lot of power. Unfortunately, getting an Ob Nixilis Reignited or Ugin, the Spirit Dragon hit by Remand is a huge tempo swing in favor of our opponent. 

Bottom Line: Ultimate Superfriends doesn't have any good matchups. The matchups against slow control decks are less bad than others. 

The Odds

The first build of Ultimate Superfriends laid an egg. In most matchups it wasn't even close. It got so bad that just resolving a planeswalker (even if we died the next turn) was a victory for the deck. While I don't think any deck has a zero percent chance of winning, Ultimate Superfriends is about as close to zero as I can imagine. 

Slightly Less Ultimate Superfriends fared a bit better. Not only were we competitive in most of our games, but we actually won a few. Being able to sideboard in some Supreme Verdicts really, really helped. There was no way we would have beaten Goblins without access to a wrath. Overall we went 2-4 in games with Slightly Less Ultimate Superfriends, which puts the game win percentage at 33%.

One of the deck's big problems is the lack of consistency that comes from playing a singleton deck. Sometimes we really, really wanted a Chandra Nalaar (as strange as it sounds), but we'd draw a Venser, the Sojourner. Sometimes we'd want a Tamiyo, the Moon Sage, but we'd draw a Jace Beleren. Focusing in on a few specific planeswalkers and playing multiples would help solve this problem, but it would take away from the flavor of the deck. 

While this deck is really fun to play and getting seven different planeswalkers on the battlefield at once is awesome, it's not very competitive. 

Vote for Next Week's Deck

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Anyway, that's all for today. As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, opinions, and suggestions in the comments. You can reach me on Twitter (or MTGO) @SaffronOlive. 

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