A new week is coming, a new patch is dropping, and a new meta will soon find its way to our doorstep:
But before we dump everything on its head, though, we’ve got another installment of Rogue Deck Doctor, to spice things up in the last couple days of the old meta. For today’s challenge we’ve been instructed to turbo our The Slaughter Docks and then look to spam gargantuan Sea Monsters with the help of Rite of Passage.
This will be a tough one, as quite a bit of our traditional toss mechanics will be hiding out of our reach in Shadow Isles, but let’s see what we can get done.
Getting Deep With It
The first step to making this theory work is finding a way to get Deep as fast as possible within Bilgewater and Shurima. I can think of a couple of different ways to get that done.
The first and simplest would be looking into all the Toss and Draw mechanics we can find for ourselves. Very traditional Deep-style deck building here, we’ll be looking to throw ourselves with abandon into the ocean and hope that something like Nautilus or multiple The Slaughter Docks can pull us back up.
After that, it gets a bit crazier.
Hey friends, guess how many cards Buried Sun Disc leaves in your deck after you level up Azir? That’s right, just that perfect amount to set our Sea Monsters to Super Saiyan mode. But trying to level a Buried Sun Disc outside of Mono Shurima sounds a bit rough.
Last, and arguably craziest, there was this old deck concept of, “How fast can I possibly mill myself.” It used nothing but landmarks and Sandseer to ensure that it drew through its entire deck and lost the game as quickly as possible.
Obviously, we don’t want to go quite that far, but how close could we go to the sun without getting burned? Well, by round seven we’ll have drawn a total of eleven cards naturally. That means we will have twenty-nine left in our deck, and need to somehow delve through an additional fourteen to achieve our goal.
If we hold ourselves to only the six misses of Sandseer and Rite of Passage, then on average our Sandseer will draw us four to five cards before hitting a non-landmark spell and getting bored – if we allow two extra hits, it would take that down to a default expectation of four.
That means that if we were able to consistently play two Sandseers by round seven, we would still have to, on average, find a way to make it through an additional six cards in our deck.
Do we have a reasonable expectation of getting this done, or do we need to find another plan here?
Defining Your Win Conditions
This installment of Rogue Deck Doctor is going to take a bit of a different turn here than the previous ones did. In issues past, we looked at how to make crazy concepts as viable as possible under the constraints we were given. Now I want to take a minute and talk about defining victory.
If I am being real here, probably the highest power deck that meets the challenge is some midrange pile of Shurima and Bilgewater nonsense that flops in as many Toss and Draw cards as possible, and prays its opponent never attacks. Yes, I could build that. Yes, it might occasionally win a game or three. But is that really what we want to do today?
Realistically speaking, neither of the available options here is going to result in a deck that makes it onto any tier list. And beyond that, I’ve been presented with a rare opportunity to make something ridiculously meme-driven that my community has specifically requested. Who am I to turn down such a wonderful opportunity as this?
So instead of the traditional Rogue Deck Doctor format, for the rest of this article we’re going to forego the trappings of attempted entry into the competitive scene. Today, we put on our Hawaiian shirt and flip flops, pull out our fishing rod and big floppy hat, and go looking for some Sea Monsters.
Today the Rogue Deck doctor takes a hiatus, and instead The Meme Doctor comes out to play. It's Meme Day today – let’s see what ridiculous nonsense we can make happen when we try to make a Sandseer Deep Deck.
Alright, so having decided that we’ve had enough of all this silly “Winning” garbage, what’s the plan? Oh, right, we need to shove as many (hopefully useful) landmarks as possible into our deck, so we can gleefully draw through and obliterate them.
The Slaughter Docks is an auto-include, as it is rather the entire point of this exercise. But first up out of the rest are Ancient Preparations and Preservarium. I put these two in the same slot because they at least help our main game plan, by drawing more to get deeper and finding the few cards in our deck we actually care about.
After that, there are a few that at least actually make units. Salt Spire and Hibernating Rockbear might be the quickest off the draw, but they can occasionally create a blocker or two. Likewise, Risen Altar is not a bad endgame compliment to The Slaughter Docks.
We’re starting to get a bit further into the weeds now, so hold on to those meme hats and remember we’ve given up on the idea of this being “good” by any traditional definition!
The rest of these are basically dead cards whose sole purpose is to exist in our deck to be drawn through by Sandseer. Sure, you can technically spend mana on them, but you really shouldn’t expect to end up getting much of anything back when you do.
Obelisk of Power and Inner Sanctum are going to end up looking a tad silly with very little to buff. They’ll be right at home, however, with Emperor's Dais sans attackers, and a Ripper's Bay without a single other Lurk card in our deck. At least that one will occasionally obliterate something for us.
Last and almost assuredly least, Reaver's Row will just laugh itself sick that we have not included a single other one-cost unit in our deck. That gets us all the way up to thirty-eight cards if we really, really want it to.
Behold the unholy, almost-complete majesty of this creation.
Isn’t it just gloriously painful?
This brings us to the last couple cards in our deck. And this is the point where we really need to start asking the important questions about what our deck is missing. All decks will of course have different levels and priorities on each of these, but the basic checkmarks on my notepad here include the following:
- A way to win,
- A way to make that win consistent,
- A way to consistently spend our mana in the first couple of rounds,
- A way to stop our opponents from winning with attackers,
- A way to stop our opponents from winning with backliners,
- A way to deal with our opponent developing into us before attacking,
- A way to deal with an open attack,
- A backup plan.
*Loud Record Scratch*
Yeah, that’s the kind of thing we would usually be asking right about now. But really, who wants to sit with a tired old list of “How to make things better?” on Meme Day?
We don’t have ANY of those things, let alone all of them. And we’re certainly not going to get there in the last couple cards.
Likewise, the last step of final touches and adjustments is a bit silly here. What, you think I’m going to carefully consider the ratioing on my Ripper's Bay and Reaver's Row versus the number of Inner Sanctum and Obelisk of Power, that should be in a well-refined version of this deck? Piffle.
I suppose we do need to get it all the way up to forty cards though, just so that we can legally start games with it, to the confused horror and delight of the opponent across the table from us. For the last two slots that don’t need to be landmarks I think I will drop in a couple of Salvage.
We’ll hit these occasionally off of Sandseer and when we do we can use them to keep pushing towards that Deep condition as quickly as possible. And when we miss our main combo card, these will help us draw closer to them with all that mana we weren’t really using for anything anyway.
This leaves us with the completed forty cards below. May whatever deity you pray to have mercy on all of our souls for causing such an abomination to walk the lands of Runeterra.
Really? You want me to give you play tips on this?
How am I even supposed to pretend to–
*Angry Editor Noises in the Background*
Fine, fine, I’ll do the best I can. No promises of usefulness, though…
Well, there aren’t really many useful cards in our deck, so I suggest that you mulligan for them. Sandseer is an obvious keep. I’ll add to that The Slaughter Docks because hitting it early will give you those much needed few extra tosses to get Deep running.
Ancient Preparations and Preservarium are also fine as they are excuses to spend our mana early that will help a touch with our total lack of consistency. Beyond that, throw the rest in the garbage and hope that they stay there until we draw them all at once with Sandseer.
I wish you all the best luck if you are bold enough to do so much as to take this conglomeration of cards I hesitate to call a deck into a normal game, and I’ll see you next time when we *hopefully* return to being the Rogue Deck Doctor.