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CSGO: Fivetown Scam and How to Avoid It

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Scamming is not a new thing in the world of esports, and it isn’t only limited to in-game currencies and cosmetics. Over the years, scam artists have come up with a variety of ways to rip off victims for thousands of dollars a day, and it seems like they’re resorting to a new method that not many are aware of.

The ‘Fivetown’ scam is recently gaining traction in the CSGO community as more and more clueless players are falling victim to it. While scams similar to the Fivetown scam have been existent for quite a while, a lot of players don’t know how it works.

How to avoid Fivetown CSGO Scam

For starters, CSGO players, or sometimes Steam members in general, will receive a suspicious message from a random person in their friends’ list. The message will say something along the lines of, “Hey, vote for my csgo team on fivetown – we just need two more votes.”

The exact message may vary but the concept is similar – they’ll ask you to log on to a third-party website to “vote” for their team.

Needless to say, there’s no such actual team, and neither can you vote for them. Once you log on to the phishing website, your account credentials will be stolen and your account will get hacked.

If two-factor authentication is not enabled on your account, you may find yourself being stripped of all your CSGO skins. Otherwise, the scammers will attempt to steal your skins through trades you make in the future by changing your API.

To avoid it, simply don’t click on the phishing link sent by the scammer. In case you have already clicked on the link, you must immediately change your account details like the password and change your API if it has already been set by the hackers.

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Source: https://www.talkesport.com/news/csgo/csgo-fivetown-scam-and-how-to-avoid-it/

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How to play League of Legends’ newest champion Gwen

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Gwen has finally made her entrance in League of Legends as the newest champion and players are hungry to play her on Summoner’s Rift. 

The Hallowed Seamstress was revealed only a few weeks back and since then, players have had the chance to test her out on the Public Beta Environment (PBE). Now that she has made it to the live servers, players will have to figure out the best way to play the new skirmisher and start to climb the ladder. Right from the start, it looks like Gwen will be strongest in the top lane but that might change as Gwen and her kit is explored further. 

While the perfect way to play Gwen is still getting figured out, there is no doubt that she will be able to cut through opponents on Summoner’s Rift and potentially be a new headache for top lane players to go up against. Here’s a look at how to play Gwen. 

How to play Gwen in LoL

Gwen is a champion that relies on quick combos and correct positioning. As an ability-power skirmisher, Gwen isn’t the beefiest champion out there and will be vulnerable to burst combos or crowd control. This means that Gwen has to choose her fights carefully and only jump in when the timing is perfect.

Playing Gwen in big team fights can be difficult and will often require patience to find the right spot to enter the fight. If Gwen gets a good flank onto the enemy backline or waits until big cooldowns are blown, she can enter a fight and turn it around on its head. 

Starting from the early laning phase, Gwen doesn’t want to play scared. Gwen wants to engage in skirmishes and be a bully in the lane, but not without considering potential ganks or bad trades. When moving in for a trade on Gwen, make sure to have Snip Snip! (Q) fully stacked. If this ability is stacked up and hits the opponent in the center, Gwen is almost guaranteed to win out on the trade. 

After gaining a few levels, Gwen can start to pull out quick combos that many tanks or bruisers can’t keep up with. Start out by using Skip’n Slash to get in range of the opponent and start dishing out damage with its empowered attacks and Q. While completing the combo, Gwen can pop Hallowed Mist (W) to gain extra armor and magic resist to win the trade. Hallowed Mist will also enable Gwen to get away while dodging attacks, especially against ranged champions. 

When hitting level 6, Gwen will gain access to Needlework (R) and be a real threat in skirmishes and even team fights. When using Needlework, Gwen wants to auto-attack the champions in between casts to get maximum damage output. Needlework applies Thousand Cuts (P) and will help Gwen chunk through enemies with bonus on-hit magic damage.   

How to build Gwen

Gwen is an ability-power champion that relies a lot on auto-attacks. This is fairly unusual for an AP champion, so Gwen’s build will likely include items that many players aren’t used to. 

For the first item, Gwen wants to get a mythic item. The best option so far will be Riftmaker, which provides Gwen with ability power, ability haste, and omnivamp to empower her kit. The Void Corruption passive on Riftmaker is also a great fit for Gwen, as she will build up extra damage the longer she damages an enemy champion. This has great synergy with her Snip Snip!, which also needs time and continuous attacks to stack up. 

For boots, get Sorcerer’s Shoes for extra penetration. Right after, Gwen wants to go for her second item where Nashor’s Tooth is a great option. As mentioned earlier, Gwen relies a lot on auto attacks and on-hit damage and Nashor’s helps with both of that. Gwen can also go for more aggressive burst-heavy items such as Hextech Rocketbelt and Luden’s Tempest, but those choices will likely require a lead to pay off.  

Later on in the game, Gwen can go for Lich Bane to get even bigger empowered auto attacks. With Lich Bane as a third item, Gwen will be very squishy and easier to focus down so it is with high risk. For a safer route, Zhonya’s Hourglass is the way to go with a potential follow-up of Banshee’s Veil as a fourth item. To round out the build, go for either Rabadon’s Deathcap or Void Staff. 

Runes to use on Gwen

The rune options for Gwen aren’t as straightforward as with many other champions. So far, there are a few options for viable keystones when playing Gwen. This gives Gwen players even more flexibility depending on which lane Gwen is played. 

It’s expected that Gwen will be seen in the top lane most often, where the Conqueror keystone is the most logical choice. With Conqueror, Gwen will be able to take part in skirmishes as she is designed to do. Against beefy opponents, Conqueror will help Gwen chunk through resistances while sustaining. 

In more aggressive matchups, it’s also viable for Gwen to pick Press the Attack. With this keystone, Gwen will be able to trade effectively with quick auto-attack combos. For the secondary rune tree, Gwen can go a defensive route with Revolve or be even more aggressive and take the Domination tree.  

Space Groove Gwen 

What role is Gwen? 

Right from the first reveal of Gwen, it was clear that Riot Games wants to work with Gwen as a top laner. As Gwen hit the PBE, it was also clear that she fits perfectly in the top lane as an ability-power skirmisher. Gwen’s damage and mobility make her a nuisance against tanks and even bruisers. There is a chance that Gwen can work in the jungle or mid lane in certain matchups, but she will likely need more time on the live servers for players to figure out the best fit.  

Is Gwen out in LoL?

Gwen was released to the League of Legends live servers on April 15, only a few days after Riot introduced patch 11.8. Gwen arrived with a Space Groove skin and a special Space Groove Gwen icon. The newest champion can be bought for 7800 Blue Essence or 975 RP.

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Source: https://win.gg/news/7894/how-to-play-league-of-legends-newest-champion-gwen

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Tarik steps down from Evil Geniuses, addresses Valo

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Tarik “tarik” Celik has announced his exit from Evil Geniuses to pursue content creation, putting the rumors of switching to Valorant to rest. 

Evil Geniuses’ ace rifler and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’s one of the iconic players tarik has officialized his temporary break from competitive play. The rumors of him quitting CSGO for Riot Games’ shooter have been rife for quite a while, but the professional player clarified that he’s sitting on the bench for an imminent return. 

“I’m going to be reflecting on things that I could have done better or differently throughout my time on the team but more than anything focus on getting back into form. This will be my primary goal while being on the bench,” tarik said.

The news comes after EG’s disappointing string of performances across different tournaments, taking losses to lower-tier teams. The viewers heavily criticized tarik for his poor showing, prompting a response from the pro player. The 25-year old had responded to the backlash and received support from fellow pro players who urged him to stay in CSGO amid the North American Valorant wave. 

Why is tarik leaving Evil Geniuses?

tarik joined Evil Geniuses in March 2019 and has since remained an integral part of the team. His departure comes from a difference in opinion in how the team should be operated, tarik explained in his statement. The pro player acknowledged the lackluster results and revealed that he had a different approach to recurring issues that didn’t align with the team. 

His announcement didn’t mention switching to a particular game, which comes as a relief for CS fans. However, he hasn’t ruled out the possibility either. For now, the pro player is following in the footsteps of the likes of Michael “shroud” Grzesiek and Christopher ” GeT_RiGhT” Alesund and will be producing his own content. tarik will likely return to pro play if an ideal opportunity comes up. 

EG signs MICHU to replace tarik 

tarik will be replaced by Polish player Michał “⁠MICHU⁠” Müller, who will debut for EG in the FunSpark ULTI 2020 Europe Final on April 19. The 24-year old has previously played for Envy, Virtus.Pro, and other major CSGO squads. 

EG recently lost its key player Ethan “Ethan” Arnold to Valorant and tarik’s departure is undoubtedly a major hit to the roster already going through a slump. MICHU’s extensive experience should help EG claw back before the CSGO RMR events kick-off. 

EG’s current roster is: 

  • Vincent “⁠Brehze⁠” Cayonte
  • Tsvetelin “CeRq” Dimitrov
  • Peter “stanislaw⁠” Jarguz
  • Owen “oBo⁠” Schlatter
  • Michał “MICHU⁠” Müller
  • Wilton “zews⁠” Prado (coach)

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Source: https://win.gg/news/7895/tarik-steps-down-from-evil-geniuses-addresses-valo

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FIFA 21: How to vote for the Team of the Season

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This year’s biggest FIFA 21 event is here and people can vote for their TOTS (Team of the Season) from the list of all the Ultimate Team players from a pool of star-studded nominees. 

The player voting opened up on April 16, Although EA Sports has yet to confirm when the “Community” lineup will be added to FIFA 21.

HOW TO VOTE?

  • Load up the EA SPORTS FIFA website
  • Visit the tab for Team of the Season.
  • Select the nominees you would like to vote for.
  • Confirm your vote online and wait for the winners to be announced.

FIFA 21 TOTS NOMINEES 

EA Sports usually go for the picks of a mix of real-life world-beaters as well as popular FUT picks. The entire list includes some of the popular names:- David Alaba, Emre Can, and Federico Valverde.

Goalkeepers

  • Álex Remiro – Real Sociedad
  • Alphonse Areola – Fulham
  • Walter Benítez – OGC Nice
  • Alessio Cragno – Cagliari
  • Péter Gulácsi – RB Leipzig
  • Fernando Muslera – Galatasaray
  • Kasper Schmeichel – Leicester City

Defenders

  • Francesco Acerbi – Lazio
  • David Alaba – Bayern München
  • Ridle Baku – VfL Wolfsburg
  • Emre Can – Borussia Dortmund
  • Lucas Digne – Everton
  • Connor Goldson – Rangers
  • Ko Itakura – FC Groningen
  • James Justin – Leicester City
  • Kang Sang Woo – Pohang Steelers
  • Johan Larsson – IF Elfsborg
  • Roberto Lopes – Shamrock Rovers
  • Gianluca Mancini – Roma FC
  • Philipp Max – PSV
  • Tyrone Mings – Aston Villa
  • Filip Mladenović – Legia Warszawa
  • Nordi Mukiele – RB Leipzig
  • Romain Perraud – Stade Brestois 29
  • Espen Ruud – Odds Ballklubb
  • Alexander Scholz – FC Midtjylland
  • Marcos Senesi – Feyenoord
  • Ahmed Sharahili – Al Shabab
  • Nicolás Tagliafico – Ajax
  • Edmond Tapsoba – Bayer 04 Leverkusen
  • Aaron Wan-Bissaka – Manchester United
  • Kurt Zouma – Chelsea

Midfielders

  • Farid Boulaya – FC Metz
  • Bruno Costa – Paços de Ferreira
  • Federico Chiesa – Piemonte Calcio
  • Anders Christiansen – Malmö FF
  • Ángel Correa – Atlético de Madrid
  • Embarba – RCD Espanyol
  • Fayçal Fajr – Sivasspor
  • Konstantinos Fortounis – Olympiacos
  • Ryan Gauld – Farense
  • Jonas Hofmann – Borussia M’gladbach
  • Pierre-Emile Højbjerg – Tottenham Hotspur
  • Atiba Hutchinson – Beşiktaş
  • Gaël Kakuta – RC Lens
  • Lee Jae Sung – Holstein Kiel
  • Michael Liendl – Wolfsberger AC
  • Manuel Locatelli – Sassuolo
  • Marco Mancosu – Lecce
  • Gonzalo Martínez – Al Nassr
  • Merino – Real Sociedad
  • Olimpiu Moruțan – FCSB
  • Tanguy Ndombele – Tottenham Hotspur
  • Christopher Nkunku – RB Leipzig
  • Luis Romo – Cruz Azul
  • Sercan Sararer – Türkgücü München
  • Téji Savanier – Montpellier HSC
  • Louis Schaub – FC Luzern
  • Oliver Skipp – Norwich City
  • Naïm Sliti – Al Ettifaq
  • Viktor Tsygankov – Dynamo Kyiv
  • Federico Valverde – Real Madrid
  • Hans Vanaken – Club Brugge
  • Jordan Veretout – Roma FC
  • Wu Xi – Shanghai Greenland Shenhua
  • Piotr Zieliński – Napoli

Attackers

  • Michail Antonio – West Ham United
  • Adam Armstrong – Blackburn Rovers
  • Leon Bailey – Bayer 04 Leverkusen
  • Harvey Barnes – Leicester City
  • Mohamed Bayo – Clermont Foot
  • Andrea Belotti – Torino
  • Robert Berić – Chicago Fire FC
  • Patson Daka – RB Salzburg
  • Siriki Dembele – Peterborough United
  • Boulaye Dia – Stade de Reims
  • Odsonne Edouard – Celtic
  • Everaldo – Kashima Antlers
  • Rogelio Funes Mori – Monterrey
  • Mario Gavranović – Dinamo Zagreb
  • Josip Iličić – Atalanta
  • Stanislav Iljutcenko – Pohang Steelers
  • Joselu – Deportivo Alavés
  • Tino Kadewere – Olympique Lyonnais
  • Moise Kean – Paris Saint-Germain
  • Jan Kuchta – Slavia Praha
  • Noa Lang – Club Brugge
  • Jordan Larsson – Spartak Moskva
  • Jamie Maclaren – Melbourne City
  • Kaoru Mitoma – Kawasaki Frontale
  • Negredo – Cádiz CF
  • Lorenzo Pellegrini – Roma FC
  • Lior Refaelov – Antwerp
  • Ricardo Horta – Braga
  • Ricardo Lopes – Shanghai SIPG
  • Luis Miguel Rodríguez – Colón
  • Miroslav Stevanović – Servette FC
  • Jonas Wind – FC København
  • Burak Yılmaz – LOSC Lille
  • Duván Zapata – Atalanta

TOTS Release Date and Time

This year’s promo is expected to begin on April 23, voting was already opened up a week before the official release. As soon as the fan polls are complete, the team will drop at 6 pm BST on Friday. 

PREDICTIONS

With the voting already started, it is still quite tough to say which players will be picked for the FIFA 21 Community TOTS, as the nominees are yet to be announced.

Also Read | How to complete FIFA 21 Prime Icon Upgrade SBC

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Source: https://www.talkesport.com/news/fifa-21/how-to-vote-for-fifa-21-tots/

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MTG Arena Strixhaven Standard Decks to Try

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Jason Parker
in Magic: The Gathering Arena | Apr, 16th 2021

With every new expansion, we return to look at decks, and MTG Arena’s Strixhaven update is no exception! Oh, I missed talking about Magic, that’s for sure. There are going to be some absolutely bonkers combos coming in this expansion as well. Later this year, we’re going to be saying goodbye to Throne of Eldraine, which feels like it’s been around for five years at this point. We’ll still be utilizing those cards a lot because they’re still wildly powerful.

Strixhaven is a Magical school plane of existence, and all of the new “Schools” (similar to the Ravnica guilds) have their own identity and design process. Each school is two-color, but we aren’t confined to doing just two-color decks, far from it. One of the ideas I like the most is a 4-color lifegain punishment deck. It’s White/Black/Green/Blue, and you can really drop someone’s life total very quickly with it. There are bound to be refinements though as the weeks come around.

These aren’t guaranteed to be the Tier 1, World-Breaker decks, as always. When we start off for an expansion, we try to focus on the fun or interesting decks, and in a few weeks, we’ll come around and see what’s breaking the game. I’ll also be returning to the Historic decks too because you can bet on several of these cards being useful in that meta. I hope it really shakes the meta up away from the Goblins. Wizards seem to be pushing some new metas and archetypes. Will they be picked up? We’ll just have to see. Sadly, the Early Access events for MTG Arena seem to be gone, and they will be missed.

That having been said, there are new decks to try this month, and I’m glad to talk about them with you!

Temur Superfriends Never Really Went Anywhere (Green/Blue/Red Midrange)


Most Superfriends decks are built around the concept of controlling the flow of the game. Make it as slow as possible, and build up those powerful ultimates. Temur Superfriends features both new and old RUG planeswalkers, but it’s creature-themed! The latest version of Kasmina, Kasmina, Enigma Sage lets all your other planeswalkers also give access to her abilities, which is great. Even planeswalkers with no upticks would have access to one. This is a Superfriends deck, where the goal is to hit the board with lots of planeswalkers. This one just also has creatures to utilize!

That’s not important to this deck, but it’s valuable knowledge regardless. The key here is a little bit of control, and a lot of Lukka, Coppercoat Outcast. We don’t have to attack with this deck at all! We can, but it’s not necessary to our victory. We just want to get a lot of creatures on the board, and then pop Lukka’s ultimate ability. This is not a deck that requires a lot of sorcery or instants, either. WE have one counter (Decisive Denial), and a lot of creatures to rush the board with.

Lukka’s ultimate ability has each creature your control deals damage equal to its power to each opponent. To make this pop off as much as possible, we have a few really useful creatures. They will let us fight our opponent if we want, or simply wait them out, and use that ultimate as hard as possible. We can also use Teferi, Master of Time to get extra turns, to make sure this all kicks off exactly as we please. It’s going to be a really bad time for whoever gets caught by this deck.

How Does It Work?


Kasmina, Enigma Sage is here to make sure we can start popping Loyalty abilities faster. She grants your other planeswalkers a +2 Loyalty ability, which grants Scry 2. It doesn’t do the same thing as the other +1’s, but if you want pure speed, 2 is better, no question. Our early game is to set up a positive board state for us, and that means Throne of Eldraine creatures. Edgewall Innkeeper is still one of the most powerful green creatures.

A 1/1 for 1 that grants you card draw anytime you cast a creature with an Adventure attached to it? Love it. The conspirators? Bonecrusher Giant, Brazen Borrower, Lovestruck Beast. In particular, Bonecrusher Giant is going to be a very powerful tool until it rotates out. There are a wealth of powerful creatures coming in Strixhaven decks for MTG Arena, but many also have incredibly low toughness ratings. That 2 damage is going to be enough to stop a foe dead in their tracks.

These cards offer early game pressure, and card draw with Innkeeper. Lovestruck Beast is our key to getting Koma, Cosmos Serpent out of our deck too. Lukka’s -2 ability sacrifices a creature and lets you reveal cards from our deck until we find a creature that costs more and put it into play. Honestly, any of those three creatures work. They all cost 3 mana. On second thought, I’d probably sacrifice the Brazen Borrower, since Lovestruck is a 5/5.

That means we get a 6/6 legendary serpent from our deck without paying its mana cost (7 mana). This overall feeds into the plan too. For each player’s upkeep, we get a 3/3 Serpent, named Koma’s Coil. We can sacrifice these to tap creatures or make Koma indestructible, but instead, we’re going to use these with Lukka.

Our next step is to get Lukka to at least 8 Loyalty. At the same time, we’re going to be boosting Teferi, Master of Time whenever we get him. If we can manage to get him to 10, we can take two extra turns. Consider Teferi’s passive. We can use his loyalty abilities on any player’s turn as an Instant. We can use Kasmina’s +2 Scry on our opponent’s turn to make things go really fast. That’s the key: power up as fast as possible, and keep a steady flow of creatures to keep the planeswalkers safe. Now if our opponent has a bunch of flyers, it might be a problem, admittedly.

Here’s where we win though. Either we just pummel the other player constantly, or we hold out for Lukka’s ultimate. Ideally, we’ll keep creating serpents and playing big creatures. Then we deal all their damage to our opponent in one big shot, destroying them utterly. You can still bully the other player constantly with him though.

Deck


4 Kasmina, Enigma Sage

4 Teferi, Master of Time

4 Lukka, Coppercoat Outcast

4 Bonecrusher Giant

4 Brazen Borrower

4 Edgewall Innkeeper

4 Lovestruck Beast

4 Decisive Denial

4 Koma, Cosmos Serpent

4 Ketria Triome

4 Riverglide Pathway

4 Cragcrown Pathway

4 Fabled Passage

4 Barkchannel Pathway

1 Island

1 Mountain

2 Forest

Final Thoughts


We can also use Kasmina’s -X ability to help win! Create a huge creature with her, or with any of our planeswalkers, to help deal the damage we need. It’s a really cool concept for a Superfriends deck and is a bit more potentially aggressive than they normally are. Unlike most Superfriends decks, we only run one control spell. Decisive Denial can counter a noncreature spell (unless the controller pays 3 colorless), or we can use it to fight a creature we don’t control. That can also help us get some damage through, so don’t underestimate it. I do not know if this is going to be the definitive version of the deck, but I’m hyped for it anyway!

Quandrix Counters Are Our Friends (Blue/Green Midrange)


To be honest, all this deck really needs are some easy access Learn abilities. This will have to be adjusted for that, I think. The sideboard has a bunch of amazing spells in it, but we have one Learn spell in the mainboard. I think those are there, just to make sure we have access, should the deck be adjusted later. I’d like more Learn spells, but if that’s not possible, it’s fine. There’s nothing wrong with that. I considered stowing in Pop Quiz in Blue or something of that nature. However, every card in this deck essentially focuses on one thing: +1/+1 counters.

Quandrix in particular has Fractal creature tokens. They are at the base, 0/0 Green and Blue creature tokens, and tend to come in with X +1/+1 counters on them. With so many creatures creating +1/+1 counters, it’s only natural to make sure The Ozolith is in the deck. Why? That way, none of those counters go to waste! When a creature of yours leaves the battlefield, they go onto The Ozolith. Then, at the start of combat, if The Ozolith has counters on it, you can move all of them onto a creature.

We can stock up tons of them, make sure we have Trample through Pridemalkin and swing for big-time, serious numbers. That’s what this deck is about. Hitting really hard, in very short order. Most of this deck is new, exciting stuff, with a few older cards in the Standard meta like Wildwood Scourge, Sea Gate Restoration, and Pridemalkin. Interestingly enough, this is another deck with Blue/Green in it, that isn’t loaded with counters. We’ll see those soon enough, I’m sure.

How Does It Work?


I love big number decks, so seeing this in MTG Arena’s Strixhaven expansion made me happy. We can take it nice and slow, set up an Ozolith on turn 1 hopefully, and wait for the counters to just roll in. Wildwood Scourge is another great early creature because it will grow the longer it’s in play. It’s a 0/0 for 1, which we can also pay X with. For X, we get that many +1/+1 counters on it. However, whenever one or more +1/+1 counters hit a non-Hydra creature of ours, put a +1/+1 on this creature.

Do we really have that many moments where we’d get +1/+1 counters? What a silly question. Emergent Sequence, for example, is a 2-cost spell. It searches our library for a basic land and puts it into play tapped. That land also becomes a 0/0 Green/Blue Fractalc creature, that’s also still a land. It gets a +1/+1 counter on it for each land we had enter play this turn. Just some food for thought.

Kianne, Dean of Substance / Imbraham, Dean of Theory also helps with our Fractals/counters. For 3 mana, you get this creature. Tapping her exiles the top card of your library, and if it’s a land, it goes into your hand. Otherwise, put a Study counter on it. For 5 mana, we can create a 0/0 Fractal creature token, and it gets a +1/+1 for each different mana value among nonland cards you own in exile with study counters on it.

Her flip side, Imbraham will allow you to get some of those study counter cards back. You can tap 2 blue and X, and tap him to exile the top X cards of your library. You then put a study counter on each. Then you can put a card you own in exile with a study counter into your hand. If you already have some of those there, you can then pay 0, and get one of those back! Not amazing for this deck though. Biomathematician for 3 mana, also creates a 0/0 Fractal but also puts a +1/+1 counter on each Fractal you control.

Manifestation Sage is another creature that adds even more of these Fractal creature tokens. It creates a 0/0 one, and it gains X +1/+1 counters on it, where X is the number of cards in your hand. We can pair this hopefully, with Sea Gate Restoration to make a huge creature. But the biggest creature we make comes from Body of Research. For 6 mana, it creates a 0/0 Green and Blue Fractal creature token, and it gains X +1/+1 counters, where X is the number of cards in your library. Ready for an awesome 40/40? Then we make sure Pridemalkin is out, so it can have Trample.

That’s what we really want: Big creatures with trample. Hopefully, we can stack some counters on The Ozolith for our Tanazir Quandrix. When this creature comes into play, you double the number of +1/+1 counters on a creature we control. That’s pretty interesting but not as great as his second power. Whenever Quandrix attacks, you can have the Base Power/Toughness of other creatures you control into the base power and toughness of Tanazir Quandrix.

All those Fractal creatures? Now they’re at least 4/4s, on top of the other counters they have. With Pridemalkin, so much damage will get through, thanks to Trample. That’s the main end we have in mind, swinging as hard as possible in the mid-range of the game. After all that, we have Divide by Zero to return a spell or permanent that costs 1 or more back to its owner’s hand, and also Learn. If I picked mine, I’d pick Biomathematician to buff our creatures more, but we can also use it on our foes.

Test of Talents is our counter for the deck, and also searchers the controller’s graveyard, hand, and library for spells with the same name as this, and exile them. For any of these that are exiled out of hand, that player gets to draw that many cards (after shuffling). We also have a tiny bit more of Mana Ramp. Eureka Moment has you draw 2 cards, and you can put a land from your hand (any kind of land) into play, and not be tapped. For 4 mana and an instant, it’s an amazing amount of value on your opponent’s turn.

Deck


4 Manifestation Sage

2 Kianne, Dean of Substance

3 Tanazir Quandrix

3 Wildwood Scourge

3 Body of Research

4 Emergent Sequence

2 Eureka Moment

1 Sea Gate Restoration

3 Test of Talents

4 The Ozolith

2 Pridemalkin

4 Biomathematician

4 Barkchannel Pathway

3 Vineglimmer Snarl

1 Castle Vantress

6 Island

8 Forest

1 Castle Garenbrig

2 Divide by Zero

Sideboard


2 Fractal Summoning

2 Containment Breach

2 Basic Conjuration

2 Teachings of the Archaics

2 Introduction to Annihilation

Final Thoughts


This deck has the potential to be a lot of fun. I think a lot of the Fractal stuff could also be useful in Historic, but for now? I like the direction this is heading in. It’s so weird seeing Quandrix/Simic without roughly forty-seven counterspells, but here we are. There has been mid-range beatdown Simic decks before, so this will feel familiar to some. I’m excited to see this potentially get used.

Quandrix Makes Infect an Endless Nightmare (Blue/Green Combo)


I just want to point out that I don’t think this will be in the meta. However, when I saw the cards Echoing Equation and Double Major, I knew what was going to happen, somewhere, somehow on the internet. Fynn, the Fangbearer would come back, to make his presence known. If you have multiple Fynn’s in play, each one doubles the number of Poison Counters that you would go. So two of him would give 4x the Poison Counters instead of 2x.

It’s not going to take a whole lot of work to make people absolutely furious. If we turn a horde of Scute Swarm into Fynn, the Fangbearer, and just swing with a maddening number of them, it’s going to be essentially a guaranteed win. Unless that player can block everyone or blow up the board at instant speed, getting something, anything through is probably going to result in a win.

Perhaps one of the best parts is how inexpensive this deck is when it comes to a mana base. Most of the spells are reasonably priced, and we can start setting up our combo on turn 2/3. We drop a Moss Viper turn 1, turn 2 a Fynn, and turn 3, Double Major! Now we have two Fynns! Copies of cards stack counter generation, so we could pretty easily win on turn 4 or so with a perfect start and no board removal. If your opponent does not stop you quickly, things get mighty out of hand. How so?

Let’s talk about what these cards do to other decks in the Strixhaven expansion of MTG Arena!

How Does It Work?


I’ve only talked about Poison Counters once or twice here on Esports Talk, and that’s for a very good reason. They haven’t been a part of the Standard Meta in years! They have existed since Legends, with Pit Scorpion and Serpent Generator. It was used in a few subsequent sets, before vanishing from the game. It would make another comeback down the road (Futuresight). Finally, it returned again under a new name, with a twist: Infect. Infect gives enemy creatures -1/-1 counters, and gives players Poison Counters.

You only need to give a player 10 Poison Counters to win the game. You can see it being used in a Historic context here. Fynn, the Fangbearer is the card that brought it back. Creatures you control with Deathtouch now grant two Poison Counters to an opponent whenever they deal combat damage. Through this, we can drop some inexpensive (1-2 mana cost) deathtouch creatures for the first few turns. Then, on turn 4, we drop Fynn and cast one of the new spells, Double Major. It’s a two-cost spell and copies a target creature you control. However, if it’s legendary, the copy isn’t legendary. We then duplicate Fynn, making two. Now each creature offers 4 Poison Counters per instance of combat damage.

Say we turn 1 Moss Viper, turn 2 Moss Viper, turn 3 Needlethorn Drake. Then turn 4, we Fynn/Double Major, and we can immediately swing lethal, providing the other player doesn’t have blockers/chooses not to block. That is an incredibly “best-case scenario”. However, Needlethorn Drake has flown, so it may get through regardless. That’s the whole best-case combo! If all goes to plan, turn 4, the other player is toast, cursing the day they ever learned what a Poison Counter is.

This isn’t the only way to win, so don’t worry. You can nickel and dime someone down once Fynn’s in play, or, consider the long-con. Scute Swarm creates a 1/1 green Insect creature token, anytime you play a land. If you have six or more lands, you instead create a copy of Scute Swarm. If we pair this with Cultivate, we easily make tons of creatures. Each Scute Swarm will trigger this again and again. From there, we need Fynn to be in play. The frontside of Augmenter Pugilist is neat, but we want the reverse of the Modal card. We want the five-cost blue Sorcery, Echoing Equation.

It has us choose a creature we control, and each other creature we control becomes that creature. If it’s a legendary, that creature is no longer legendary. This lasts for one turn, so we only pop this off when it’s time to swing lethal. Suddenly, we could have 20+ copies of Fynn, the Fangbearer. From there, we simply need one to deal damage, in order to deal lethal damage. Barring everything else, we can just use Questing Beast with Fynn to keep pinging away to win.

Since this is a Simic/Quandrix deck, we need some counters. That comes in the form of Quandrix Command, which chooses two effects out of four. You can return a creature or planeswalker to its owner’s hand, counter an artifact or enchantment spell, give a creature two +1/+1 counters, or shuffle three target cards into a library from the grave (for target player).

It also has the familiar Decisive Denial. The combo is easy to use and incredibly satisfying.

Deck


4 Moss Viper

4 Fynn, the Fangbearer

4 Needlethorn Drake

3 Double Major

2 Decisive Denial

3 Test of Talents

3 Augmenter Pugilist

3 Quandrix Command

3 Scute Swarm

2 Saw It Coming

3 Questing Beast

9 Forest

8 Island

4 Barkchannel Pathway

3 Fabled Passage

2 Cultivate

Final Thoughts


I really wanted to feature this deck because I adore the concept. I will try to not cover any other Quandrix decks in this blog, honest. I just really enjoy combos where you can beat someone in one turn. Sadly, I’m not so sure a Silverquill OTK will be possible in Standard anymore, but it will be around in Historic. That will be fine! I’ll be covering Historic soon enough. If you want to make someone as cross as humanly possible, this is a great way to do just that. Will it be a deck you see in MTG Arena/MTG Majors? I doubt it. But boy would that make me happy!

Winota and Friends Are Still Meta (Probably) (White/Red Aggro/Combo)


Oh, Winota. You’re so silly and powerful and people don’t even care. White/Red Winota decks are based on low-cost, early-game non-Humans, and pulling powerful Human creatures out of the deck for free. In the past, I’ve written about Winota and Good Boys (Winota Dog Deck), and one of those is still here – Selfless Savior. Sadly, we’ll only have this deck for a few more months in Standard, so let’s enjoy it while we can. Our non-Humans are pretty cheap (3 mana or less). If you don’t turn-4 Winota, it’s going to be a long, ugly game though potentially, so be aware of that.

Our goal is going to be to do annoying things like suddenly go from attacking with 3 or so creatures, and double that. It’s a very simple, but efficient deck. It’s likely, that if everything goes our way, on turn 4, we’re just going to win via damage. We can grant our attacking creatures Double Strike, or buff the newly-summoned, also indestructible creatures. It’s so beautiful and so frustrating. This may not be the last instance of Boros Aggro, either. It’s the first one I saw that I really enjoy the concept behind though.

This version is different from previous Winota decks we’ve run since it has some new, exciting creatures in place of the old ones. It’s such a fun, satisfying ability to pull off, since you literally have to do nothing other than play Winota, and roll the dice.

Roll the dice? What does that mean?

How Does It Work?


The key is to start with Winota, Joiner of Forces in our hand. We also don’t want to miss a land-drop. This is so we can play Winota on turn 4. The first three turns are dedicated to get as many low-cost non-Humans into play. You’ll see some familiar faces likely – Stonecoil Serpent, Alseid of Life’s Bounty, and Selfless Savior. We’ve got Shaile, Dean of Radiance as another possibility, as a two-drop legendary Bird Cleric. This creature is a 1/1 with Flying/Vigilance, and can be tapped. If you tap it for its ability, each creature that came into play this turn gain a +1/+1 counter.

This allows you to attack with it, and also buff your allies that also dropped this turn. That makes it key for Winota. The highest-cost non-Human is Skyclave Apparation, which exiles a nonland, nontoken permanent of your opponents, that costs 4 or less. Don’t attack unless you know your creature won’t die though. We want as many as possible.

Oh and Venerable Warsinger. A 3-cost Spirit Cleric, it has Vigilance/Trample. Whenever this 3/3 deals combat damage to a player, you return a creature card with Mana Value X or less into play from the graveyard. X is the amount of combat damage they dealt. If somehow they have Double Strike, you get two creatures back.

Now, when Winota, Joiner of Forces comes into play, you’re free to swing with your non-Humans. When a non-Human of yours attacks, you look at the top six of your deck and put a Human from among them into play, tapped and attacking (and it is indestructible for the turn). You do this for each non-Human you control and attack with. Our Humans we’re going to get are Elite Spellbinder, Kenrith, the Returned King, and Blade Historian. The best part of this deck is you can adjust the Humans/Non-Humans as you like, but I support this set-up so far.

Ideally, we’re going to get each of these, or even another Winota, Joiner of Forces. I’m willing to put that in play even if it means putting the other into the grave. If somehow we don’t defeat the other player, we can use Venerable Warsinger to bring them back, provided we deal 4 damage with one swing (easy with this deck). We also want to tap Shaile to make sure everyone gets +1/+1. The reason Blade Historian is so important, our attacking creatures gain Double Strike. The idea here is that we’ll swing for lethal damage in one hit, two tops. Kenrith will help, as he’s a 5/5 baseline. You can also use him to give all creatures Trample/Haste for the turn, so you can make sure blocked creatures have a better chance of getting damage out.

That’s the whole deck strategy! We can also use Showdown of the Skalds to exile the top four of our deck to find something useful. Until the next turn, we can play those cards. Great way to get a Winota or something, should we miss it. The other two parts of this Saga grant a creature of ours a +1/+1 counter anytime we cast a spell this turn. Creatures count as spells while being cast, so this should still work just fine.

From there, we swing until we win!

Deck


4 Alseid of Life’s Bounty

4 Venerable Warsinger

4 Winota, Joiner of Forces

4 Elite Spellbinder

2 Showdown of the Skalds

4 Selfless Savior

2 Kenrith, the Returned King

6 Mountain

2 Stonecoil Serpent

4 Skyclave Apparition

4 Cragcrown Pathway

4 Furycalm Snarl

2 Savai Triome

8 Plains

4 Blade Historian

2 Shaile, Dean of Radiance

Final Thoughts


What a ridiculous deck. It’s so powerful and quick. It’s more likely we’re going to swing for lethal on Turn 4 or 5. We can also use the Selfless Savior to make someone indestructible for the turn (by sacrificing the Good Boy). We can use Warsinger to keep bringing stuff back if need, as long as it deals combat damage. The concept of Winota decks is wildly simple, and it’s all creatures, except for Showdown of the Scalds. It doesn’t need anything else! Spells make it harder for us to put Humans into play for combat damage. Let’s enjoy this while we can.

Silverquill Auditing Service (White/Black Control)


Control is ultimately my favorite way to play. No matter how many silly, big-number decks I play, at heart, I’m a control player. I’m only really at home when I slow the game down to a snail’s pace. Strixhaven (and in particular, Silverquill) has some amazing tools for that. If we combine last expansion’s Reidane, God of the Worthy with Wandering Archaic, we can make any player wildly miserable.

We don’t have quite the same access to WB control as a Death & Taxes deck might, but it’s very close. We can’t slow down their creature summoning, but we do have hand control, creature removal, and the ability to recycle our Kitesail Freebooters again and again, as well as Alseid of Life’s Bounty thanks to Lurrus of the Dream-Den. They aren’t the stars of the deck, but they sure are rad. If we can combine Reidane with its other side, Valkmira, Protector’s Shield, we can tie up the other player’s mana indefinitely. That’s what we’re after.

I like to consider this an anti-control control deck. It’s primarily at making sure Instants and Sorceries are the most miserable, expensive experience we can possibly afford. If the other player can pay the colorless mana to prevent immediate counter, we’re hoping they won’t have the mana to afford a Wandering Archaic or two. Its ability to copy opponents’ spells if they don’t spend 2 colorless mana is going to be infuriating.

I like that in a faceless Avatar of Doom. This deck is all about making the experience of casting spells as frustrating as possible, while we ping away at them, slowly but surely. It’s not Death & Taxes, but it is a very frustrating Audit.

How Does It Work?


Perhaps the biggest part of this deck for me is Wandering Archaic. It’s a 4/4 for 5, so we aren’t going to get it immediately. But it’s going to be a real problem to deal with. Whenever an opponent casts an instant or sorcery spell, they may pay 2 colorless mana. If they choose not to, you may copy that spell, and choose new targets for it.

As a colorless creature, you can put this into any deck. Your opponent now has to spend mana just to prevent me from doing what they’re doing. If they cast a counterspell, we can counter their counter if they don’t pay the 2 mana. We can destroy one of their permanents, or search our deck for lands! Whatever kind of stuff comes up.

This pairs with Reidane, God of the Worthy. They make your opponents Snow Lands come into play tapped, and noncreature spells they cast with a Mana Value 4 or greater cost 2 colorless more to cast. So now for big spells, they have to pay 4 colorless just to cast them, and not let us use them too. We can also put multiple Wandering Archaics into play to make that copy happen more than once.

That is key to this whole thing. Then we add in the 2-cost White/Black 3/2 Human Cleric, Silverquill Silencer. When it comes into play, we choose a nonland card name. Whenever our opponent casts that spell, they lose 3 life, and we draw a card. Use this with Kitesail Freebooter as an example. We look at their hand, and exile a noncreature, nonland from it. Now we know what else they have. From there we can pick the things they want to cast the most.

Elite Spellbinder helps with that also! It lets us look at our opponent’s hand again. We can exile a nonland card, and that owner can still cast that spell from exile. But it costs 2 colorless more. That stacks with all of our other stuff too! Make things incredibly hard to cast, as hard as humanly possible. To slow them down even more, Humiliate has us look at our opponent’s hand (Surprised?). We pick a nonland and they discard it. We also then put a +1/+1 counter on a creature we control!

There’s also Vanishing Verse, which may become a control staple. It exiles a monocolored permanent, so basically any nonland, since lands have no color (provided it’s a mono-colored permanent). I can really see this being an incredibly useful, powerful card going forward. I’d like to find a way to put Professor Onyx in this deck too. We’ve got Lurrus for a while yet, so we can use him to bring back Alseid over and over to give something protection from a color.

We can deal damage with Kitesail Freebooter as a flyer, and Legion Angel, which lets us bring more of them from the sideboard. We slowly whittle away at the other player, while making them pick very carefully every single spell they utilize. Against decks that don’t utilize a lot of spells? Might not be as fun. Might be terribly difficult.

Deck


3 Wandering Archaic

4 Brightclimb Pathway

2 Castle Ardenvale

8 Plains

2 Castle Locthwain

8 Swamp

1 Legion Angel

3 Reidane, God of the Worthy

3 Lurrus of the Dream-Den

4 Elite Spellbinder

4 Kitesail Freebooter

3 Dire Tactics

3 Vanishing Verse

4 Silverquill Silencer

4 Humiliate

4 Alseid of Life’s Bounty

Sideboard


2 Go Blank

2 Sorcerous Spyglass

3 Drannith Magistrate

2 Fracture

1 Deafening Silence

2 Archon of Absolution

3 Legion Angel

Final Thoughts


What a fun deck to counter heavy-spell decks! This is sadly another one that I’m not sure will dominate the meta. It could definitely be fun though! I see this deck going through a few changes over the next few weeks. It’s a deck I certainly want to see people using, or at least something very similar. Over the weekend, before this gets published, we’re going to take some time and see what else shakes out.

Pestocrats…? (Green/Black Pests Combo)


Pests is a deck concept I’ve been excited to see too. This one looks to really sink into the “Aristocrat” archetype, where we sacrifice minions for our own gain. We punish foes for gaining life, and we set up loops where opponents lose life over and over again. Three creatures punish our opponents whenever we gain life, by making them lose life. It’s just a shame it doesn’t really look like we have an OTK, unless we get all three creatures into play, and blow up a ton of Pests at one time.

After all, we’ve got Tend the Pests and Daemogoth Titan to make sure we have as many Pests as we need. If that wasn’t frustrating enough, we’ve got Bastion of Remembrance to double our pleasure and double our fun. Something you should know since we’ll be talking about “Pests” a lot. Pests are 1/1 Black/Green creature tokens. They have “When this creature dies, you gain 1 life.” We use this to make our opponent lose life, across Vito, Thorn of the Dusk Rose, Dina, Soul Steeper, and Marauding Blight-Priest.

This is a deck that’s going to for sure need some adjustments, but I really like where it’s going for now.

How Does It Work?


It’s sadly not a very fast deck. I wish we were talking about more aggro concepts, but I’m still looking to see what shakes out in the meta. But this deck, we can really obliterate people out of nowhere. We’re looking to get Dina, Soul Steeper, Vito, Thorn of the Dusk Rose, and/or Marauding Blight-Priest. They all make an opponent lose 1 life whenever we gain life. That means we need individual instances of life gain, making Pests key.

One of the downsides of Pests feels like “Your opponent may not want to kill them.” This is because of the triggers of those above three creatures. Each time we lose a Pest, we gain 1 life, and then our opponent loses 1 life for each of those in play. Fortunately, we’ve got a creature to help this kick-off as soon as we have enough Pests to get this going (in one turn, hopefully): Woe Strider.

Woe Strider is an exceptional creature for this deck. It’s a 3/2 for 3, and it can sacrifice another creature to Scry 1. Not only does it let us adjust what’s on top of our deck, let’s look at a hypothetical situation. We have Vito and Dina in play. That means each time we gain life, each opponent loses 1 life (so 2 life lost per creature). If our opponent has 20 life, we need to sacrifice 10 creatures.

Then we say hello to Daemogoth Titan. An 11/10 for 4, you sacrifice a creature whenever it attacks or blocks. We’re not going to do that with it, anyway. The next step is Tends the Pets, a 2-cost Instant. The best part about this is we can now win in our opponent’s turn. To cast Tend the Pets, we also sacrifice a creature (Daemogoth Titan). We gain X 1/1 Pests, based on that creature’s Power. That means we now have 11 Pests.

Every time a Pest perishes, we gain 1 life, Vito, Dina, and Blight-Priest will trigger, for each instance of lifegain. Vito deals X damage based on how much life is gained, but the other two is 1 life lost per instance of healing. So we do these one at a time, to make sure we get the most out of it. On our opponent’s turn, we’d set up a stop so we can, in response to something, anything, we start sacrificing. Even if someone sets up a kill on Woe Strider, we can, in response, keep sacrificing Pests. We would win, and they can do nothing about it.

We have other ways to create Pests though. Callous Bloodmage for example, lets you create a 1/1 Pest. You pick one of three choices. The other two is “You draw a card and lose 1 life”, and “Exile target player’s graveyard”. In most cases, we want to get a Pest and hold onto it. We also have Blex, Vexing Pest, which gives Pests, Bats, Insects, Snakes, and Spiders of ours gain +1/+1. When Blex dies, you also gain 4 life, so that’s 4 damage from Vito.

Dina, Soul Steeper also lets us have a sacrifice engine, but it costs 1 colorless mana, where Woe Strider is free. In a pinch, Dina will do. If we have Bastion of Remembrance, we can win even faster. When a creature we control dies, each opponent loses 1 life, and we gain 1 life. So if we have Vito out (or any of the others), it’s yet another point of damage. We also, finally, have Hunt for Specimens that creates a 1/1 Pest, and also triggers Learn.

Our Lesson of choice is Pest Summoning, which gives us two 1/1 Pests. The combo for this deck is really clear, and easy to see. We have several options for everything we do. We can just swing until people have to block and kill our creatures, we have several ways to get Pests, and also several engines for the free damage/loss of life. That’s why this deck is so wonderful.

Deck


4 Dina, Soul Steeper

4 Blex, Vexing Pest

4 Callous Bloodmage

3 Marauding Blight-Priest

2 Vito, Thorn of the Dusk Rose

3 Woe Strider

2 Daemogoth Titan

3 Village Rites

4 Hunt for Specimens

2 Tend the Pests

4 Bastion of Remembrance

2 Mortality Spear

4 Darkbore Pathway

5 Forest

4 Necroblossom Snarl

7 Swamp

3 Temple of Malady

Sideboard


3 Chainweb Aracnir

2 Scavenging Ooze

3 Deathless Knight

2 Duress

2 Heartless Act

1 Return to Nature

2 Pest Summoning

Final Thoughts


This should be a pretty easy deck to get started. The only downside is that most of the good cards require 3 mana. So you have to get going, and never stop ramping forward. If you can get an engine in play, a sacrifice method, and your Pests, you can win in one shot. Or you can win slowly but surely. Both ways work, but I prefer to just obliterate someone in one swoop. It’s just satisfying.

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Source: https://www.esportstalk.com/blog/mtg-arena-strixhaven-standard-decks-to-try/

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