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Much Abrew: Experimental Cheerios (Legacy, Magic Online)


Hello, everyone! Welcome to another episode of Much Abrew About Nothing. Last week, we had a surprise during our Instant Deck Techs, with a Legacy deck coming out on top! As a result, we're heading into a Legacy league on Magic Online today to see what happens if we go all-in on Experimental Frenzy in a format overflowing with cheap (and even free) mana! The plan of our deck is simple: we find and resolve an Experimental Frenzy and win the game on the spot. Our deck is filled with cost-reduction effects and rituals to produce mana during our frenzy, along with some tricky ways of controlling the top of our deck to reduce the odds of fizzling. Finally, we use Burning Wish to grab a Grapeshot or Empty the Warrens from our sideboard to close out the game! Is Experimental Frenzy good enough to compete in Legacy? Let's get to the video and find out; then, we can talk more about the deck!

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Much Abrew: Experimental Cheerios (Legacy)

Discussion

  • We played a league with Experimental Cheerios, and while we started out by winning our first two matches, we ended up dropping our last three, leaving us with a 2-3 record in sum. While this isn't bad for a format as powerful and well-tuned as Legacy, it would have been sweet to pick up another win and post a winning record. 
  • Our matches actually broke down in a pretty predictable way: Experimental Cheerios was insane in matchups where our opponent didn't have Force of Will but struggled once the free counterspell entered the picture. We managed to out-Storm Storm and somehow race Dredge even without graveyard hate, but the deck struggled once we ran into UR Delver, Sneak and Show, and UW Control. 
  • While we didn't pick up any Turn 1 wins, the biggest upside of Experimental Cheerios is that the deck can win extremely quickly. We had quite a few wins on Turn 3 where we simply resolved Experimental Frenzy and proceeded to play our entire deck, and even if we managed to fizzle (which doesn't happen often unless we play Frenzy with zero mana or ways to manipulate our deck), most Legacy decks don't have a way to deal with Experimental Frenzy once it's on the battlefield, so even if something goes wrong, we're able to win on the next turn.
  • Lion's Eye Diamond is the best card in our deck. It's a literal Black Lotus once we have Experimental Frenzy on the battlefield, since we don't really care about discarding our hand, as we can't cast the cards in our hand anyway. 
  • Enlightened Tutor and Noxious Revival are also pretty insane. Both of these cards are extremely efficient but come with the downside of putting the card on the top of our deck rather than into our hand. However, with an Experimental Frenzy on the battlefield, we're basically putting the card into our hand, which makes both of these cards incredibly broken in our deck.
  • One word of warning: when you combo off with Experimental Frenzy, you often end up with a bunch of Lion's Eye Diamonds on the battlefield. Make sure to crack them before using Burning Wish to tutor up your finisher. When it comes time to win the game, we need to sacrifice our Experimental Frenzy, which means we need something like 10 mana. In one of the first test games I played with the deck, I didn't crack Lion's Eye Diamond and almost lost—even after frenzying through our entire deck—as a result.
  • All in all, Experimental Cheerios reminded me a lot of decks like Belcher or Oops, All Spells—it has the power to win the game on Turn 1 and is actually pretty consistent at assembling its combo quickly—but it struggles to beat free counterspells like Daze and Force of Will. If free counterspells didn't exist in the format, Experimental Cheerios would be one of the better decks in the format, but since something like 70% of Legacy decks play Force of Will, we're mostly putting our opponent to the test and hoping they don't have an answer. Sometimes they do, and we pretty much lose on the spot, since we spend so much resources to get an Experimental Frenzy on the battlefield. Sometimes they don't, and we win the game on Turn 1 or 2!
  • The Force of Will problem is a tough one to fix. We can't really play our own counterspells because they fizzle our Frenzy. The best option might be to jam a bunch of Defense Grids in the sideboard. Worst case, our opponent has to spend a counter on Defense Grid; best case, it allows us to resolve our Experimental Frenzy the next turn. More importantly, Defense Grid is cheap enough that we can cast it during our Frenzy (especially when we have a Helm of Awakening on the battlefield), so it doesn't stop our combo like a counterspell would.
  • So, should you play Experimental Cheerios? I think the answer is yes. It's good enough to win some matches, and the games you win with the deck are truly amazing. While Force of Will will likely keep Experimental Cheerios from winning a big tournament, it's just as good (and in some ways better) than other "win on Turn 2 if you don't have Force of Will decks" like Oops, All Spells and Belcher. If you want to experience the most extreme Frenzies possible in Magic, give Experimental Cheerios a shot!

Conclusion

Anyway, that's all for today. Don't forget to vote for next week's deck by liking, commenting on, and subscribing to Instant Deck Tech videos! 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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