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Reverting and Indefinitely Locking All Decks to the Start of the Game in Modern
By Dan Freagarthach
Michael Flores, a respected legend in the Magic community, recently wrote an interesting article over at Gathering Magic about the "Immutable Rules of Mana Bases." While Oversoul and I have shown that his premise about competitive Magic decks is not true in an absolute sense, whether considered in relation to tournaments or individual matches within an environment, his article got me thinking about how to intersect the exploration of Magic theory with potential practical applications in a tournament context, particularly how one might shift the game theory decisions of an opponent from the rules of Magic to the metacontextual rules of Magic tournaments via deck design.

For example, creating a situation in which an opponent is forced to choose between conceding and moving on to the next game in a series, potentially betting on a post-sideboard configuration to win the match, or agree to an intentional draw for one point rather than taking further time and risk getting zero points for the match.

The following deck utilizes the unbounded mana and library draw engine from the Balefire deck outlined elsewhere to return all cards in the exile zone to their owners libraries with Riftsweeper, then cast Plagiarize targeting the opponent, then with Leyline of Anticipation on the battlefield cast Blinkmoth Urn, Elixir of Immortality, Leashling, Nuisance Engine, Possessed Portal, Rusted Slasher, Sundial of the Infinite, then Mirrorworks, then Sway of the Stars, all at instant speed in response to the previous spell without ceding priority, as early as the third turn. Sway of the Stars will shuffle all hands, permanents, and graveyards into owner libraries and then cause the initiating player to draw 14 cards, which Leashling will individually return to the top of the library using the unbounded amount of floating mana created at the start of this process once it has resolved from the stack and been recast 14 times. Mirrorworks is used to create token copies of Blinkmoth Urn, Nuisance Engine, Possessed Portal, and Sundial of the Infinite when they enter the battlefield. Rusted Slasher then sacrifices the other non-token artifacts on the battlefield except itself and Elixir of Immortality, then it sacrifices itself to its own ability and Elixir of Immortality shuffles itself and the graveyard comprising the above stream of cards into the library, leaving all decks complete in their libraries without cards in any other zone.

The game state is now all cards from all decks facedown in their respective libraries with four artifact tokens on the battlefield owned by the initiating player. After creating a Pest token with the Nuisance Engine token and then activating the Sundial of the Infinite token, the combo turn ends. The Possessed Portal token keeps the opponent from drawing a card during their draw phase, and the initiating player sacrifices the Pest token at the opponent end step. From that point on, during their first main phase, the initiating player adds four colorless mana to their mana pool from the Blinkmoth Urn token, then pays the activation cost for Nuisance Engine to create a Pest artifact token to sacrifice to the Possessed Portal token on the opponent end step, then pays the activation cost for the Sundial of the Infinite token ending their turn. All of which has the effect of causing nothing else to occur within the game indefinitely while all decks remain in their complete library state.

No win, no loss, no draw, only five artifact tokens ensuring that all libraries remain in their start of the game configuration indefinitely as equivalent to Comprehensive rule 103.1 - "At the start of a game, each player shuffles his or her deck so that the cards are in a random order. Each player may then shuffle or cut his or her opponents’ decks. The players’ decks become their libraries."

Pristine Stasis - Modern legal deck (60 cards)


16 Forest
4 Plains
4 Sunpetal Grove


4 Devoted Druid
4 Genesis Hydra
1 Leashling
1 Riftsweeper
1 Rune-Scarred Demon
1 Rusted Slasher
1 Soul of the Harvest
1 Verdant Eidolon
4 Vizier of Remedies


1 Blinkmoth Urn
1 Cloudstone Curio
1 Elixir of Immortality
1 Leyline of Anticipation
4 Manamorphose
1 Mirrorworks
1 Nuisance Engine
1 Plagiarize
1 Possessed Portal
1 Sundial of the Infinite
1 Sway of the Stars
4 Tooth and Nail

Comments welcome here

Read More Articles by Dan Freagarthach !

 - Wednesday (July 18. 2018)
 - Thursday (May 17, 2018)
 - Tuesday (Aprl. 24, 2018
 - Monday (Apr. 16, 2018)
 - Friday (Apr. 6, 2018)
 - Wednesday (Apr. 4, 2018)
 - Monday (Apr. 2, 2018)
 - Friday (Mar. 23, 2018)
 - Thursday (Feb. 15, 2018)
 - Thursday (Jan 25, 2018)

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