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Fare Thee Well
By David Zadok Stroud
It’s time, ladies and gentlemen. In a few months, Urza’s Block rotates out forever. Goodbye, Yawgmoth’s Will. Goodbye, Deranged Hermit. Goodbye, Opposition. Goodbye, Replenish, Opalescence, and Attunement. Goodbye, everything. Am I mad all those cards are leaving? No, I hate the decks spawned by those horrors of the Pro Tour.

But I am mad.

‘Cause Greater Good is leaving, probably forever. I mean, who’s gonna reprint an obscure rare that never really got played from a set with so many important cards? So, there is goes, my signature card is gone. Great dismay and anguish upon my world. Damn. So, what am I gonna do about it? Nothing, actually, at least not directly. I’m not gonna send dozens of emails to Rosewater begging for it to come back in 7th (although I’ve seriously considered it). I’m not gonna quit playing. I’ll just sit here, and be sad in my own rights.

And write some final decklists.

I’ve spent long enough working with Greater Good. Ever since Legacy was released, I’ve had a Greater Good deck of some kind in my head. And, usually, another one in my deck box. So, needless to say, I have some experience with using it. So, before it rotates out of Type 2 forever, welcome to my farewell to my all-time favorite card.

When Legacy was released, one of the first cards to gain a lot of attention among casual players was the rather impressive Weatherseed Treefolk. Multani also received a lot of mention. Well, it just so happened that, while thinking about Multani, I dug through my rare cards to a Greater Good I had lying around. The combo was obvious. Multani was big, therefore he got me lots of cards. Greater Good gave me lots of cards in trade for a big creature. So, Multani and Greater Good synergized like hamburgers and ketchup, right?

That was my first Greater Good deck. It never left the sheet of paper it was written on, as acquiring four Multanis was well beyond my power. It was, in essence, a combo deck, relying on playing a Multani and a Greater Good, and then saccing it for another one, etc… Then playing an Overrun and winning with Das Uber Multani. Needless to say, it would have sucked had I ever used it.

But it did get me hooked on the idea of Greater Good. My next thought? Weatherseeds. That’s lots of cards, needless to say. Unfortunately, like my last deck idea, it was lots of mana. And I wanted to actually build this one, so I couldn’t go and have it sucking. I eventually resorted to mana elves. More specifically, Priests of Titania, and lots of ‘em. And Llanowars. And Fyndhorns. And a couple of wonderful little Seekers of Skybreak (quasi-Preists).

The final touches? Well, there were no final touches. At the time, 40-card decks were considered OK by my groups standards, so my tiny new Greater Good deck, which sported all of one Greater Good, was perfectly legal. It almost never used Greater Good, though, partially due to the fact that there was only one in the deck. But more so because it was just a better play to beat down people with Rancored Weatherseeds.

Then someone (who shall remain nameless, mainly ‘cause I forgot who) played a bunch of walls. Nothing invulnerable, but nothing I could beat through, either. What did that leave me? A bunch of useless Weatherseeds? That ain’t cool! So, in usual Zadok001 style, I got ‘creative.’ In other words, I put random cards into the deck until I found something good. In this case, Alter of Dementia.

And thus was my most infamous Greater Good deck born. It took a long, long time to perfect, but it eventually reached the point where it could deck people out as early as turn 4, and go infinite (yeah, yeah, yeah, it went ‘unbounded,’ are you happy now?) if it had to. It also got a line out of someone that is possibly my proudest moment: “Dave, you broke Greater Good.” Ok, so it’s not much to brag about. But it’s a fun deck, and it wins.

4 Greater Good
2 Weatherseed Treefolk
4 Rancor
4 Endless Wurm
2 Alter of Dementia

4 Priest of Titania
3 Seeker of Skybreak
4 Llanowar Elves
2 Rofellos, Llanowar Emissary
2 Fyndhorn Elves

4 Creeping Mold
1 Vitalize
1 Soldevi Digger

2 Gaea’s Cradle
21 Forest

There’s probably a better version. But this, I guarantee, is the most fun mono-green deck you’ll ever deck someone with. It’s also the only mono-green deck you’ll ever deck someone with. It can produce ungodly amounts of mana if it wants to, but it usually doesn’t. Just a few dozen mana is enough to deck someone to the point of no return. And two Priests will give you that much faster than you might expect.

There’s more where that came from.

With the coming of Sneak Attack into the tourney scene, some people ended up splashing in a Greater Good to be dug up by their Rectors. That allowed them extra cards to keep the attack going one extra turn,

Sneak Attack/Greater Good

4 Sneak Attack
1 Crater Hellion

4 Serra Avatar
4 Academy Rector
4 Enlightened Tutor
3 Angelic Chorus

4 Greater Good
4 Worldly Tutor
3 Abundance

4 Endless Wurm

4 Brushland
4 Karplusean Forest
4 City of Brass
13 Basic land, sorted to taste and changing daily

‘Tings. That deck, unlike the previous one, could win a tourney on a good day. On a bad day, it couldn’t beat a draft deck. Very luck based, but still unequalled in the fun department.

I have so many of these decks, it’s not even funny anymore. Entire journals filled with dozens of ideas regarding Greater Good. Decks revolving around Maro. Creatureless (!) decks. Control decks. Aggressive decks with Greater Good as a backup. Negator/Twisted Experiment decks. Lots, and lots of Greater Good decks.

I feel better now. I’ve been wanting to rant on this topic for weeks… If you got this far, thanks for listening, and I have no point to get to. Wait, that’s wrong. Yes, I do have a point. Here ya’ go:

A lot of people are looking at this upcoming rotation, and thinking: “How will this affect my decks?” Or, “Thank God Masticore is finally gone!” Or “Yes, no more Bargain!” Well, there’s something beyond all that, folks. How do I know this? Well, I help run the CPA message boards, and I see people’s names and nicknames () a lot. A lot of those nicknames have something to do with specific cards, cards no one else pays attention to. All those cards I ignore, all those cards everyone else ignores, someone has picked one of them out as their all-time favorite. They’re sad about this rotation too, for the same reason I am. Their favorite card is rotating out.

The rotation isn’t all about what you see on the net and in decks. Some cards are just cool, and someone’s probably really, really sad that Carnival of Souls is rotating out.

--Zadok001, aka Greater Good fanatic
Casual Player’s Alliance Founder
“We have more sprouts than they have hands.”

----------David Zadok Stroud (zad001@hotmail.com)
“Truth and beauty have nothing in common, save this; that they exist only in the eye of the beholder.”

zad001@hotmail.com

Read More Articles by David Zadok Stroud!

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