Home Strategy Crosswinds deck guide: Cancelling your opponent’s fun

Since the original Duels of the Planeswalkers, I’ve sort of made it my mission to squeeze nascent power out of slower, more control-themed decks. My work began with the original Thoughts of Wind deck, then Cloudburst in DOTP 2012.

Were these decks consistent, top tier contenders? No, but if played right, they were oh so satisfying.

Now the haters have circled around Crosswinds in Duels 2013. “It’s too slow.” “The control element doesn’t work.” “I hate my father but can’t admit it.” I’ve heard it all.


Uncrossing your wires

As with Thoughts of Wind and Cloudburst, Crosswinds isn’t a straightforward deck, due in no small part to having significantly more unlocks than previous games offered. Gameplay requires consistently calculated plays, including a very strong understanding of how The Clock influences mid and late game board position. A lot of short term sacrifices must be made in order to ensure that, at the end of the match, your opponent’s hand is dwarfed by your massive, throbbing stash of cards.

That said, there are two ways to play Crosswinds, and certainly many variations on each. First is my favorite: mono blue control. In this format, Crosswinds focuses on stalling while setting up combo elements that eventually achieve a soft or hard lock, depending on how it’s played. You must have a firm grasp of the number of turns you have left to live, choosing which spells to save for your delicious winning turn.*

Alternatively, Crosswinds can be played as air beats, generating mid-game card advantage and sidestepping your foe’s defenses altogether. While I don’t personally love this build, it is effective, so I’ll be including separate ratings for both deck styles in the card-by-card breakdown.

With that said, let’s review every card in Crosswinds and weight each spell’s merits. Afterwards (if you’re good), you can see my current (extremely successful) decklist. Get your notepad out!


Crosswinds card-by-card analysis (by cost)

Kraken Hatchling: 4.0 Control, 3.5 Air Beats

While a 0/4 creature won’t impress your friends at parties, Crosswinds only has two reasonable first-turn plays, and this baby sea monster is the only one that’ll stop Raging Goblins from stomping your face. While it doesn’t have the flying or combat invulnerability of Fog Bank, Kraken Hatchling can take a beating through the entire early game, and is more than happy to pull removal from your enemies’ decks for you. Keep in mind a Ring of Evos Isle can turn these into mean tanks, and even a swing for zero can boost an offensive Keep Watch.

Sleight of Hand: 5.0 Control, 4.5 Air Beats

Having Sleight of Hand in your opening paw means you can more frequently take something with only two (or, on the other side, up to four) Islands instead of a mulligan. Sleight of Hand builds consistency directly into your deck, giving you a way to dig for lands, creatures, or answers when you need them. And at only one mana, they’re basically a way of trimming your deck by two cards per inclusion: casting it instantly replaces its spot in your hand and chucks something worthless to the bottom of your deck. For that reason, you should always run all three copies.

Curiosity: 2.5 Control, 3.5 Air Beats

If you’re playing a more conservative version of Crosswinds, you won’t have a creature that can reasonably use Curiosity until your fifth attack phase! On the other hand, it’s an easy way to build card advantage in a more aggressive aerial assault. As long as you plan your offense, Curiosity will always pay for itself (by granting a single card draw), and will often supply much more advantage over the long run.

Hydrosurge: 1.5 Control, 3.0 Air Beats

As far as combat tricks go, you can’t get much lamer than Hydrosurge. You still need to front damage on your end to make good use of it, and that’s not always easy to do with Crosswinds. Another reason to hate Hydrosurge? Most of its -5 power drain is wasted on the fast weenie decks you’ll most often lose to. In other words, it’s unnecessary vs its prime targets and overkill on actual threats. Leave this one in the sideboard.

Distortion Strike: 1.0 Control, 3.5 Air Beats

Underwhelming overall, Distortion Strike does have the power to win games… in certain situations. It can give you the opportunity to swing with your Evos Isle-pumped fatty twice in a row, for instance. It also combos quite well with Curiosity and Arm with Aether, granting massive card advantage either way. That said, it serves no purpose in defensive builds and can’t be used as a combat trick due to its slower Sorcery speed.

Favorable Winds: 3.0 Control, 5.0 Air Beats

While it’s easy to scoff at a +1/+1 bonus, it’s important to remember that Talrand and his friends get a 50% boost from having just a single Favorable Winds in play. And paying four mana for two 3/3 flyers (or even 4/4 with two Favorable Winds) is still considered a deal on this side of the multiverse, last time I checked. This is an absolute must in an Air Beats build, but shouldn’t make an appearance in a Control variant unless you’re loaded with flyers.

Azure Mage: 4.5 Control, 4.0 Air Beats

Just by sitting on the board, Azure Mage threatens your opponent with limitless card advantage. And easy setups like turn 2 Azure Mage, turn 3 Repulse (to waste the enemy’s turn, draw a card, and clear the route for attack), turn 4 draw make it an even better inclusion. Azure Mage is also Crosswind’s only two mana creature with any stopping power, making it essential for early game defense in Control and early game offense in Air Beats. It’s obviously a strong late-game play, too.

Fog Bank: 5.0 Control, 3.5 Air Beats

With the magical ability to shut down anything other than removal and trampling critters, this wall can drastically slash the amount of damage you take for the rest of the game. There isn’t much to say other than “this is really good at keeping you alive,” other than perhaps “Fog Bank won’t be as useful if you’re trying to keep an aggressive tempo up.”

Ring of Evos Isle: 2.0 Control, 3.0 Air Beats

While it’s certainly the best of the rings in Duels of the Planeswalkers 2013, this island gem still has issues. It costs (valuable) early game mana to protect your creatures, and the majority of your army is made up of disposable tokens and kraken kids you don’t love enough to protect. Sure, it’s great for protecting more valuable creatures, but so is countermagic and bounce, both of which have more varied uses. That said, if you liked Talrand and are sad he got Shocked, you really should have put a ring on it.

Disperse: 5.0 Control, 4.5 Air Beats

Technically this is a poor man’s Into the Roil (or a colorblind man’s Boomerang), but in the limited Duels format, two mana bounce is nothing to scoff at. It keeps threats tied up on the other side of the board, clears blockers out of your drakes’ way, and even serves to invalidate enemy spells (by removing their legal targets). It’s cheap, versatile, and fast… use it.

Mana Leak: 5.0 Control, 5.0 Air Beats

One of the advantages of having Mana Leak in your deck is not what it actually does (counter poorly timed spells) but what it forces your opponent to do (waste mana or turns trying to be “safe” from the card). Essentially, leaving two Islands untapped on your end of the board will force your opponent to leave three lands open… even if you’re just bluffing. This cheap alternative to Cancel may not provide the brute force of that counter (or Counterspell, for that matter), but it destroys enemy tempo.

Drake Hatchling: 4.5 Control, 4.5 Air Beats

Remember when I said Crosswinds had no reasonable way to swing with Curiosity before turn 5? I lied. Drake Hatchling doesn’t have a lot of power, but it’s the cheapest way to begin asserting air superiority in Crosswinds. Add in a micro-Mana Leak element and you have a versatile creature that provides offense, defense, and utility for just two mana. Plus the value of imagining your foe’s face when he forgets this is on the board and taps out for Overrun? Priceless.

Twincast: 3.5 Control, 2.0 Air Beats

Yes, the ability to copy any Instant or Sorcery is powerful; you can be certain other mages won’t be laughing when you duplicate a Time Warp, that’s for sure. Unfortunately, the opportunity to do so doesn’t always arise when you have both Twincast and two mana available. Do yourself a favor and use it sooner, rather than later. Doubling the effect of Repulse when it’s possible is worth a lot more than holding onto Twincast all game hoping to draw Blatant Thievery.

Skywinder Drake: 1.5 Control, 4.5 Air Beats

Is not being able to block worth a nearly guaranteed three damage a turn? That pretty much depends on which variant of Crosswinds you’re playing. Leave this flyer behind in Control builds, but saddle it up with Curiosity, Favorable Winds, or Arm with Aether support when taking to the skies. A few turns of hijinks like that will pretty much spell doom for any enemy who can’t mitigate the massive damage flow.

Arm with Aether: 1.5 Control, 4.0 Air Beats

How much mana would you pay for a one-sided Evacuation? If you said six or even seven mana, you’d be completely reasonable. Arm with Aether costs half that. Sure, it requires you to put some muscle into the fight, but with lots of flying, bounce cards, and combat hacks like Distortion Strike, it’s easy to clear a path to an Aether-fueled armageddon. Not typically valuable in Control play, this card will single-handedly win games when you’re swooping in with even a few members of Talrand’s squadron.

Call to Mind: 4.0 Control, 3.0 Air Beats

Imagine a blue Demonic Tutor that only worked for Instants and Sorceries, and cost three mana. Well, as long as you have a nice selection of spells in your graveyard, that’s exactly what Call to Mind is. None of the randomness of card drawing, or the crappy possibility of pulling more lands when you need a Rite of Replication. While this card is obviously more powerful when your deck has a lower number of creatures, any variant of Crosswinds has enough magic to make this worth playing.

Cancel: 5.0 Control, 5.0 Air Beats

Look, I would have preferred a Counterspell just like anyone else. But as far as Duels expectations go, saying “no” is just as fun for three mana. As long as it’s kept in hand for an actual threat that can’t be otherwise negated, Cancel is the most effective way to stop your opponent’s strategy in its tracks.

Keep Watch: 3.5 Control, 4.0 Air Beats

Three mana to draw at (basically) instant speed might normally net you one, possibly two cards. Keep Watch can easily net four or five draws, working great on offense or defense. Hell, you can swing with Kraken Hatchlings to pump your gains, or use it in 2HG for envy-inducing boons.

Repulse: 5.0 Control, 5.0 Air Beats

As with Disperse, Repulse can drastically slow your opponent’s gameplan down, often forcing him/her to waste entire turns and double the mana replaying a major threat. A built in card draw ups the tempo value of the card, essentially netting even for you. Consider it a three-mana Time Warp in the right circumstances.

Archeomancer: 4.5 Control, 3.5 Air Beats

Remember all the good things I said about Call to Mind? Archeomancer does the same thing but adds a 1/2 body for one more mana. This means Archeomancer can be Repulsed (every turn if desired), Replicated (x5 for massive style points), or used for combat. That said, he may be too slow to be a strong turn 4 play in Air Beats.

Rite of Replication: 5.0 Control, 4.0 Air Beats

By itself, Rite is a strong card, essentially a Clone at four mana and a lot of clones at nine. It can eliminate Legendary creatures, too. But paired with Panoptic Mirror, Cast Through Time, or Archeomancer? Get ready to win the game in a hurry. As with Twincast, using this earlier is better as waiting may not pay off. You can always retrieve it from the graveyard later on.

Talrand’s Invocation: 4.0 Control, 5.0 Air Beats

Card advantage comes in a lot of forms, and getting two bodies from one card is a great example. This is an excellent fourth turn offensive or defensive drop, letting you stave off both swarms and larger 4/4 bombs. More importantly, it pairs extremely well with Panoptic Mirror, Favorable Winds, and (of course) Talrand himself.

Talrand, Sky Summoner: 4.5 Control, 4.5 Air Beats

Surprisingly better in Control variants than straight air offense, Talrand turns every bounce, tap, and counter into a mildly menacing monster. He automatically makes attacking into untapped Islands scary, and he generates insane tokens with Rebound and Imprint mechanics. This card is the main argument for keeping Ring of Evos Isle.

Dehydration: 1.5 Control, 2.0 Air Beats

In most cases, Fog Bank will be better served for shutting down enemy offense. Dehydration simply won’t work on anything with vigilance or abilities that don’t require tapping, nor does it shut down defense… so it really isn’t versatile enough to justify spending four mana.

Time Warp: 5.0 Control, 5.0 Air Beats

The jewel of the deck, extra turns are almost never a bad thing. A free draw, another untap, an additional attack, and the element of dread it instills in your enemies. Comboed with Archeomancer, Call to Mind, or Cast Through Time and it’s insane. Comboed with Pantoptic Mirror, it’s a turn 6 infinite combo (Imprint during your upkeep with Panoptic’s ability on the stack).

Panoptic Mirror: 5.0 Control, 4.5 Air Beats

The ability to cast the spell of your choice every turn for free is nothing to sneeze at, especially if that spell is Time Warp. Still, Panoptic is incredibly strong with even Repulse, Sleight of Hand, or Talrand’s Invocation imprinted. Certain cards like Keep Watch and countermagic won’t work, and losing the Mirror means big card advantage for your foe. However, if you can keep this in play for even a few turns, it’s pretty much game over for your opponent.

Time Reversal: 1.0 Control, 2.0 Air Beats

Considering how cool the name is, you’d expect Time Reversal would set your life to 20 and give you a do-over on a losing match. Unfortunately, this expensive chrono magic more frequently hands your enemy the win, since he’s the one who gets to untap with seven cards in hand first. Ouch.

Future Sight: 4.5 Control, 4.5 Air Beats

At first glance, there doesn’t seem all that great. You get one extra card and your opponent gets to see what you draw. But in practice, you’ll often drop two or three extra cards a turn, as long as you don’t hit a large patch of lands. Every time you play a new card, it’s instantly replaced, giving your hand infinite flexibility. Future Sight is a definite keeper.

Gravitational Shift: 3.5 Control, 5.0 Air Beats

An obvious inclusion for Talrand-based shenanigans, Gravitational Shift plays a secondary role of negating huge amounts of incoming damage, especially from the weenie decks that typically give Crosswinds trouble. Few other decks have fliers, and the ones that do will still be stalled by Fog Bank. Bonus: this card singlehandedly shuts down that nasty Bloodghast encounter.

Sphinx of Lost Truths: 4.5 Control, 4.5 Air Beats

Going by conventional wisdom, five mana for a 3/5 flyer is certainly reasonable. Throw on a three-card looting mechanic, and it’s interesting. Drop in the option to keep all three cards? Astounding. A turn five play with either deck can quickly even out the battlefield combat balance while helping you dig for what you need. If desired, this beast can be bounced for additional draws late game.

Spiketail Drake: 3.5 Control, 4.0 Air Beats

The father of Spiketail Hatchling, this 3/3 flyer offers a full-scale Mana Leak in exchange for his life. This effectively makes him a safe play to tap out for, though it also means you could end up paying five mana for what’s normally a two mana spell. Unlike the Hatchling, your opponents might be glad to see a spell countered if it means taking a 3/3 off your end of the board. For that reason, I can’t say it’s an automatic inclusion.

Recurring Insight: 2.0 Control, 2.5 Air Beats

While the value of Recurring Insight is largely dependent on your matchup, the reality is that most opponents will have nearly empty hands by turn six or seven. If they don’t, you’re either dominating them or they’re holding onto a Cancel to use on this would-be bomb. In most instances this won’t be worth six mana, though using it in a FFA match may yield better results.

Cerulean Sphinx: 1.5 Control, 3.0 Air Beats

For so much mana, you’d wish this creature had an activated Shroud ability instead. Sure, throwing it into your deck will make it impossible to “kill” but the odds you’ll redraw it any time soon are so low, it might as well be dead. Any variant of Crosswinds would have better luck with another high-cost card.

Cast Through Time: 2.5 Control, 1.5 Air Beats

Giving every spell in your deck Rebound is very powerful, but waiting to get the effect on turn 8? Not so much. Yes, two turns in a row via Time Warp is sweet, but many spells (like countermagic and Keep Watch) simply won’t benefit. In other words, you’ll be holding a dead card for the majority of the game before getting marginal use from it.

Sphinx Bone Wand: 4.0 Control, 2.5 Air Beats

While it’s just as expensive as Cast Through Time, the Bone Wand offers something that enchantment doesn’t: an alternative win condition. While you might normally have to push flyers into your foe’s face all game, this artifact turns every Disperse and Sleight of Hand into a bonus Shock, Lightning Bolt, or worse! Hell, it’s not unheard of to win by casting a card then countering it twice to zap your enemy (or his blockers) three times in a row.

Blatant Thievery: 2.5 Control, 2.0 Air Beats

Great for FFA matches, Blatant Thievery is just too expensive for 1v1 duels. Most artifacts and enchantments you could steal won’t benefit you (other decks’ rings and medallions, for instance), and any creature you’d want can be copied for far less via Rite of Replication.

Goliath Sphinx: 3.0 Control, 4.0 Air Beats

An undercosted monster, this card poses a serious threat the second it hits the board. By the time you play it, it can often win in a single attack, and Crosswinds has more than enough ways to ensure this Classical Era creature gets through. Mind you: tapping out to cast him may be a fatal mistake.

Day of the Dragons: 2.0 Control, 4.0 Air Beats

This scary enchantment has a lot more landing oomph than Cast Through Time or Sphinx Bone Wand, though it benefits more from a crowded runway. Cast it after an attack to replace your tapped-out army with untapped dragons, giving you a free swing. Even more fun: Disperse your Day of the Dragons if/when your red reptiles die, supplying a surprise defense at an instant’s notice.


Promotional unlocks

Flow of Ideas: 3.0 Control, 3.5 Air Beats

Expensive, yet powerful, Flow of Ideas shines in Duels where games will often be drawn out to 10+ turns. In Air Beats, this card is a strong way to refill your hand with threats after playing a Talrand’s Invocation or four. In Control, Flow of Ideas may come a little too late to actually stop threats. After all, if you’ve survived long enough to get six Islands on the board, you’re probably in an okay position. Do yourself a favor: never put this on Panoptic Mirror.

Bribery: 5.0 Control, 5.0 Air Beats

Considered a powerful card since it debuted in Mercadian Masques, Bribery is even stronger in the limited, creature-dominated Duels format for a few reasons. Each deck only has a few high-end creatures, and usually only one copy of each, so using Bribery denies your foe their favorite fatty forever. Pairing this with Twincast, Archeomancer, or Crosswinds’ nastiest artifact will all but guarantee you a win. Just don’t use it on Phage the Untouchable.

Followed Footsteps: 3.5 Control, 2.5 Air Beats

Followed Footsteps won’t save you the turn it’s cast, so it falls into the same category as Future Sight. Unlike Future Sight, this aura is only really useful when there’s something worth copying on the board, and can easily be stymied by any removal spell. Throwing Followed Footsteps on your opponent’s threat will offer you a 2-for-1 trade, which is noteworthy. Also keep in mind that putting one on Archeomancer can provide infinite turns with Time Warp.

Tidings: 3.5 Control, 3.5 Air Beats

There’s nothing wrong with Tidings, it’s just a matter of finding a good time to cast it. If you’re in trouble on turn 5, tapping out for four cards may or may not be worth it. Later in the game, this spell can give you the momentum and answers you need to move the game forward, but Future Sight does the same thing better for the same mana cost. I could go either way on this card, so it’s really a matter of personal taste.

Flow of Ideas: 2.5 Control, 3.0 Air Beats

For one mana more than Tidings, you could draw two more cars, or ten more cards. That’s not a bad deal, but as with Tidings, it’s not always easy to find a good time to cast these card-drawing powerhouses. This card could also backfire in the Jace matchup, though that consideration won’t be particularly common. Don’t include this card unless you have a particularly light mana curve.

Time Stretch: 2.5 Control, 1.5 Air Beats

If you survived long enough to cast Time Stretch, your fate was probably sealed either way already. This card will sit dead in your hand 90% of the time.


Crosswinds control-style deck list

Now that you’ve seen my thoughts on every card available, here’s what I’m currently (and quite successfully) running in Crosswinds. While a few cards might be subject to change, my overall approach was spell-heavy, creature-light, and combo focused. To slightly tweak the spells-to-mana ratio, I’ve loaded 61 cards.


Crosswinds air beats-style deck list

After spending more time with Crosswinds and tinkering with a more aggressive build, here’s what I’d recommend for an Air Beats variant. Here I dropped a lot of the “combo” cards instead leaving spells that would help air assaults get through and bounce any threats long enough to sneak in damage. Have any suggestions or thoughts? Let’em rip in the comments below!

Crosswinds gameplay videos


* In many cases, your winning turn will occur after taking several turns in a row.

68 replies to this post
  1. I normally get my deck guides from Daisho, and you for entertainment and hilarious stories. However for 2012 I found your Cloudburst build and gave it a try. The fact that you focus so much on land is awesome and very important. Your Cloudburst build was far better than Daisho’s was, in my opinion anyways, and I do think it had a lot to do with your land base. So far Daisho’s only deck guide is Goblins, so I will be running this for sure. At least until I compare yours to his. Your experience with paper Magic really shows. That story about you almost electrocuting yourself in the slowly flooding bathroom, almost made me flood my own pants with urine by the way.

    • Thank you! I totally forgot I included that story in one of my videos.

      I do like to think that playing this game for 12 years makes a difference! I have played so many tens of thousands of games of Magic it makes finding the good/bad elements of these decks easier since I (or my friends) have at some point built similar decks and it’s easy to see where they succeed and fail.

      That said I certainly have my own biases. In some circumstances I might dislike a card because it was bad in constructed Standard play 4 years ago, but maybe it has a place in the Duels meta. Thanks for watching & reading.

    • I want to second this. Granted, I’ve never had a great deal of success with any build of Cloudburst, but I did significantly better with wingspan’s deck.

  2. hey wingspantt

    your blue control deck is awesome!
    i was wondering what your deck list for the born of flame deck is (i’ve been having a hard time getting the deck around 60 cards)

    And also do you run it creature wise or burn wise

    • Thanks! I’m actually working on that one next. Should have unlocks done in a day or so, and the deck list by early next week. Still tweaking spell/creature ratio a lot.

  3. I play a lot of paper Magic as well. I find it much easier to build my own decks than to try and trim down these ones. Probably because of having an unlimited card pool and having lots of other peoples input. I have been playing since Time Spiral, but have only been heavily into it since the Zendikar block. I have around 13 decks in total. I am a big BR fan, and never having a decent DOTP deck for that colour combo has sucked. The leaked Rakdos deck does give me some hope though.

    You should definitely put that story in one of your videos. A lot of people have probably never heard it since it was only written on a fan mail response page or something? Maybe you can tell it while you “flood” your opponent with burn spells, while creating the Born of Flame guide? The guide I would most like to see would have to be Obedient Dead, if you like control this deck must really tickle your fancy. I don’t find it quite as fun as Grave Whispers but I have always had a soft spot for Liliana, and will probably end up using it more than any other deck. Making your opponents discard is just too enjoyable a mechanic, it takes away card advantage and incites a sense of panic. They start chucking spells onto the field, not thinking, just trying to get them out before you make them thrown it away. That’s something I miss in her deck this year.

  4. I’ve been looking for this :) Thank you so much, this is great to read and very informative. Can I look forward to future guides for D13?

  5. On the PS3, there’s an option to disable foil cards. I don’t see why there wouldn’t be one on the PC, if you want to fix that framerate drop for good and all.

    Looks like a good build. Can’t wait to get around to this deck. I started with Goblins, thinking initially (and incorrectly) that it was going to be one of the less popular decks. And also because, ya know, goblins. Then, I moved on to Ancient Wilds because I was becoming increasingly impressed with its combos every time I played it (and because it is, in fact, under-appreciated). Now, I’m working on Exalted. Maybe Crosswinds will be next–if not Leliana. Or Garruk. Or Chandra. Or Ajani.


  6. I like your gameplay, I’m playing the x-box version and became frustrated with revenge mode until i tried your deck, kicked thier butts so tyvm for the indirect help =D.

  7. And then I summon my Chancellor of Spire, target your Rite, target my Chancellor, target your Rite, target my Chancellor…

  8. Hey WingspanTT !

    I stumbled onto your duels commentary/advice the week before 2013 released and have been enjoying it thoroughly. Thanks!

    Once i got all ten decks unlocked i decided (as you indicate that many others do) Crosswinds was the most underwhelming entry this year… then immediately challenged myself to make it work.

    Boy does it!

    My build mirrors yours, but with the following changes:

    Only one aether mage
    two kraken
    no spiketail drake
    no gravitational shift

    3 talrand invocations
    2 favorable winds
    cast through time
    blatant thievery

    64 cards total

    the invocations / winds give me a decent mid-game defense/threat to help set up for the 5+ cmc bombs

    with so many unlocks at launch (30) and surely more to come, it exciting to see the varied builds that skilled players can contrive.

    i play 2hg a lot and Crosswinds can really pull off some sick moves!


      • i did the same for the aether mage

        also added the cast through time and 2x talrand invocations.
        I find the blatant thievery a bit too expensive for 2 player FFA

        deck is around 64-65 cards

  9. Can you update your list with the new changes to crosswinds? (you took out one azure mage for talrand invocation)

    Also, you mentioned, there is other ways to build this deck. Can you show us the other version – and what it is for? (aggro? Mid-game?)

  10. I playtested this deck for about 10 hours. I liked it but felt it needed more aggression. So I took out 1x kraken, 1x mage and 1x twincast for 2x Skywinder Drakes and a 60 card stack.

    I’m at 7 games now and I’m real pleased with the results. Dealing damage every turn keeps people on their feet. Just sitting there with foggy’s bouncing and drawing to your game winners lets them adjust to that accordingly, how easy is it to spot the Crosswind guy crossing his fingers for a mirror draw?

  11. Ok, I swapped wand for Day of the Dragons and added 1 Kraken Hatchling back in as my 61st.. was getting mana flood with 60. I think this will be my final choice.

  12. Hey Wingspantt! When you do the Liliana’s guide can you include the soundclip from Altered Beast when you mention the card ‘Rise from the Grave’?

    I always shout out when I play it, “Wise fwom your gwave!” in my best 16-bit Zeus voice.

  13. Wingspan,

    Whats up man, i must say that I had never really followed TTT, until recently when one of my friends shared a link with the youtube videos you posted pre 13′ launch. I have been glued to my laptop even at work following all of your videos and your unique humor. So for that I must say thank you!!

    Also, I have tried both of your deck variants and such and am very satisfied, with your crosswinds control build i have moved up the leaderboards quickly on the 360. and have now begun to unlock the other 9 decks. I know you do alot of different games and post vids and such, but I was curious if possibly you could post or email me some more builds from some of the other decks? It would be much appreciated and I could definitely use your deck building expertise.


  14. Soo I am a Huge Fan of Game of Thrones, and I wanted to simulate the Mother of Dragons Persona into the Crosswinds Deck on MTG 2013.

    I need to place a Day of Dragons card into your Control Deck. Which Card do you recommend to remove?

    I love the Control Deck you have constructed because Khaleeshi’s stradegy to form her army is about manipulation of others, and then a surprise with her new born Dragons.

    I love it when i have 3 Blue Hatchlings on the field all game, then pull a Day of the Dragons and they Grow into 3 Red Fire Breathing 5/5 Dragons of mass destruction ( or better yet 15!). It is the most savoring surprise to everyone, and Mother of Dragons become the King of Thrones (i love the “Throne” Board with the ring of fire in the middle too!).

    Also, The Ingame Avatar Picture of the White very pale faced Girl with White Hair and Red Eyes fits Khaleeshi’s Persona Perfectly.

  15. Don’t know if it’s been mentioned but the panoptic mirror/rite of replication combo is probably more powerfull than anything other than time warp (which is auto win). You get to replicate with kicker ever turn. If you get that combo going you will win pretty much ever time. The rite is cast for free by the mirror so you only pay the kicker. It’s sick!

    Try it against the white spam decks, or really anything with creatures. Just imagine what happens when you get 5 copies per turn of the white Geist card (x/x plus 2 or 3 1/1 tokens – sorry I forget the name and the exact effect, but the card is obvious whey of see it), just for example.

      • Also, I wouldn’t bother with day of dragons. Don’t get me wrong, it’s pretty awesome, BUT the dragons come in with summoning sickness, and if they are made with tokens and the enchantment get removed somehow, all of your tokens get destroyed (e.g. Goodbye army of 2/2 flyers, hello you just lost the game). Plus its casting cost is way too high. I’d just use another time warp, or really almost any other card.

        Sorry for the multi posts.

      • If the enchantment gets removed you get all your creatures back, untapped. You can use this to your advantage for surprise blockers. Additionally you will trigger coming-into-play effects like Archeomancer again.

  16. Oh!? The one time I got it going my creatures were almost all tokens. They didn’t come back. Getting my archeomancer to trigger again is interesting though. It’s tough to ever get to really test the card. — this is one of the reasons I don’t use it, lol. Too much mana, not enough ‘this card made me win.’

    Btw… That said, I loved the attacking version of the deck. Totally not what I’d have done with it, but effective all the same.

  17. Also, after Chandra’s deck, could you do Yeva’s? I’m torn between going with cheap critters for smoother draws and going with the face-wrecking late game expensive critters. I really can’t understand why they put rings in this deck instead of Emerald Medallions. Deck feels like it’s missing so much mana acceleration.

  18. God I really miss my thoughts of wind control deck….mind you it was terrible too but without people being able to edit their decks to their fullest potential….it kinda helped the slow ramping. Thats now while I here today, I came here to give you props on your mono control I really like it. I threw in a twincast just for satisfaction purposes but thats just my retarded logic. My issue is if you have an advice for online play. I just started playing people online again and bam thanks to diazho(or however its spelled no disrespect I just forget…) I immanently play 2 tight gobin decks where I go second. After trying to learn my lessen from my first match I try hard to get a mana leak in my hand to no avail. two matches in a row turn 2, 2 gobin piledrivers. Its soon over both time. Its so broken vs a solid blue and the leaked white/blue looks no so much control… *sigh* a little frustrated, any advice? I never minded losing so much to mana screwed or just 1 more turn to take control because eventually that match where for the last 6 turns you only have 1 life as you ping away your desperate opponates life….but this to just gay.

    • First, there is nothing “gay” about it.

      But on topic: Blue has always had this problem. If you want to beat a pro blue creature, your only options are to counter it or outrace it somehow. Goblins has no way to stop you from Twincasting a Time Warp, which is a more powerful effect, but comes later. Really it just comes down to luck.

  19. This is a very slow deck.

    Feels like the slowest deck out of the 10 of them.

    Great builds. but it feels like this deck s more suited for assistance in a 2hg game and not so much for a 1v1

  20. Not sure if anyone mentioned this or if you noticed yourself but your Archeomancer disappeared in your last video because he was a token copy of your same card with followed footsteps.

  21. It is a bit slow for 1vs1 but oh so amazing in planescape and with the right 2HG partner.

    Stupid question but I play this on the PSN; can I play against people from other networks? There are a lot of noobs on the PSN and it’s a waste of time to play against them (sorry for the elitism) so I’m always looking for good opponents or 2HG partners. My name is ‘carlosferrao’ on the PSN.

  22. What did you change in this edit, Wing?

    (And sorry, this deck still sucks balls, more than my father :)
    It’s easily the second worst deck, and an insult to the memory of previous years’ blue decks.

    • I greatly disagree. I’d say Celestial is below this, along with Jace.

      Things are going to change a LOT when the DLC comes out. Many of the DLC decks are a little slower, so medium speed decks like Crosswinds will have a lot more strong matchups.

      • Ok, I fully admit there may well be something I missed with Crosswinds (yet to believe it based off my experience, but I’m not closed minded!).

        However, if you think Celestial is anything less than top-shelf, we need to play out a series :)
        Crosswinds is probably the only horrid matchup for Celestial, which I find beats goblins, BoF, and goes even with OD. It makes a *mockery* of Peacekeepers and Exalted.

        Hey you still didn’t mention what you changed in this edit! If there’s a viable xwinds decklist you’ve fpind, I’m at the desperation point I’d netdeck. No configuration I have tried myself has been anything but a disappointment.

        Your point about the DLC is interesting…but I wonder if those decks will be solid vs goblins.
        I guess indestructibles will be if they’re stupid enough to put those back in.

  23. I too think Ajani’s deck doesn’t get the respect it deserves. I’ve had some great beats with it. So easy to grow a pridemate in no time assuming your playing the right support cards. I find that burn decks have a tough time dealing enough damage. However crosswinds can get some type of lock going and can overwhelm Ajani, Artifact/enchantment removal gets countered. Against liliana, I found it hard to keep key creatures in play, having to play strategically by drawing removal with lesser creatures. That’s when loxodon hammer and basilisk artifacts are very helpful. But as wing mentioned before… If you take out the few doomsday devices it has. The deck runs short of threats.

  24. Wingspantt, i think wizards might remake crosswinds because that deck is just dumb stupid. I lost to a guy that had like 80 cards in that deck. He just kept doing the time warp thing with repulse, archaeomancer, followed footsteps and disperse. You dont even need the mirror to do the time warp thing. Its just so broken they would even allowed such a thing. They should cap the deck size to like 65 or something to play in multiplayer.

    • So in your opinion, it is okay that Goblins can win on turn 3, but if Crosswinds can get infinite turns on turn 6 or 7, using a 2-3 card combo, that’s bad?

    just reading this guide now, after finding your videos on youtube. You rock, plain and simple. Thank you for your enthusiasm to the community and MTG playing, and please continue with your work for both.

    I’m super new to playing Magic, and I’m looking forward to implementing your crosswinds (and other) deck suggestions. Best of luck in your tournaments (and get a new xbox).


  26. I love this deck. I can’t count the number of times that people have dropped out of the game when they’ve tapped out all their mana out and made zero progress, only to get caught in a Bribery + Mirror combo.

  27. Also, Twincast can be used as a counter spell, if someone will counter a creature of yours, you can use Twincast to counter his counter spell.. :D And I know I said “counter” too much.. xD

    • I disagree. It only saves you IF you draw it, one out of sixty cards. If it gets milled (which is very likely), you are still screwed. Even if you do draw it, Jace can counter it.

  28. If it gets milled, you can return it, by casting “Call to Mind” or “Archeomancer” even if it’s countered.. Also I use a trick.. (Mirror + Time reversal) it’s a pretty fun combo, and 100% effective against Dream puppets. :D

  29. My first comment.

    Thx Wingspantt for all your strategies and video’s. You’ve made some great decklists, however I must say that you use some very bad cards in my opinion. But that’s the thing about DotP, right: make the best list out of the given cards, just like sealed deck.
    And you make some real misplays from time to time, but don’t we all and most of the time you recognise it yourself.

    The control-list of Crosswinds was a very good start, but I tweaked it a bit more to make it become even better. I really see it as a control-combo deck, so the tweaks appear to make it more controllish in the early game. I love control-decks, especially wth real cards in the Legacy-format and I think this deck is the best control-deck in the game, with the Lililana-deck being the best contender.

    My tweaks are this:

    -2 Azure Mage: sometimes you do need the mage as a blocker, but most of the time she’ll die immediatly. It’s very rare to draw cards with it.

    (I do play Twincast, even though I’m not sure about it. Often it just serves as an extra counter, or can make great tempo swings with one of the bounce-spells)

    -1 Keep Watch/Tidings: Played Keep Watch for a while, and it often lets you draw 3 cards, which is very good. However: most of the time you don’t have enough mana to cast all of them, leading you to discard. It’s on par with the Twincast slot, where the blue Fork just seems to do it most of the time. And you don’t want to tap out with 5 mana to just draw 4 cards, even the Sphinx would do better in this case (ditching some lands, filtering your hand, adding something to the gamestate).

    -1 Gravitational Shift: I agree with you that it’s awesome against the two weakest matchups (Goblins and white weenie), but this card is to slow in my opinion and you are still able to lose against a fatty. That’s why I also

    (I do play the Panoptic Mirror: it’s the main wincondition)

    Now what did make it:

    First of all I wouldn’t play the 61st card, because Crosswinds is a manahungry deck and you really want to make all of your landdrops. You don’t want to mess up your land-spells ratio because of that.

    What made it:
    4th Talrand’s Invocation
    3rd Rite of Replication, I really think this is the best card in the deck.
    Followed Footsteps

    In effect it cranks the manacurve a bit, but you are almost guarantied to stabilise the game on your fourth turn, whether it be by an Invocation (and only Garruk can effectively battle that by having bigger creatures), or just copy the best creature on the board with a Rite.

    The Footsteps have a double purpose, which you both adress in your card-evaluation. When playing a control deck, you really want as much 2-for-1s as possible. When you compare it to Gravitational Shift (it falls in the same slot in the manacurve), you are absolutely right that it doesn’t directly influence the board-state, but it does win you so much in the turns after that, more than a Grav Shift does in my opinion. And by turn 5, you always want to do something which is really, really awesome. Footsteps is one of the few things in this deck who do actually beat big creatures.

    I’m curious about your thoughts and I hope to battle you one day.

    Merrin Hondius (just google me for some of my ‘magic-achievements’)
    Proud member of teamadhd.nl
    Styx on DotP
    merrinh87 on Steam

    • Good points all around. Really I could go both ways on a few cards. I face so many fast decks I feel obliged to use every tool available to counter them, but your build is also quite viable.

      • HI, WiNGSpantt. I have failed to beat Both Odric and Krenko in revenge mode since they are too fast and have plenty creature removal. I’ve failed it do either with air beat or control. What decklist could you recommend vs those 2?

  30. HI, you guys say that Odric is the weakest match up, but I can not beat it neither witj Contro or air beat style. Something I wi n1 out of 7, Could you please advise the exact deck list мы Odric? I’ve run out of tuning ideas. Thanx in advance.

  31. Currently it appears like WordPress is the top blogging
    platform out there right now. (from what I’ve read) Is that what you’re using on
    your blog?

Leave a Reply

Newest Articles

Disciple of the Ring
8 5447

Since I began playing Magic: the Gathering nearly 20 years ago, I've been drawn to blue/red decks. Maybe it's just that I've always favored instants...