Why We Play: Timmy

We’ve done a lot of analysis of what formats provide good value- but not a lot about who those formats are good for.  The next few episodes I’m going to cover Player Archetypes, and delve into some of the formats that Johnny, Spike, Timmy and Vorthos might enjoy.

This week will be primarily focused on the Timmys of the world, the splashy, Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger, huge beatdown players who derive the most fun from the game when they’re producing huge numbers, huge gameplay effects, and giant creatures.

One of the nicest things about Timmy is it’s fairly easy to get your kicks in any constructed format, as most have some way to create some splashy effect.  Let’s look at Standard- the Electrostatic Pummeler + Energy deck is a great example of a Timmy deck that can and will crush your opponents like ants.  Standard right now is actually fairly full of large splashy effects that Timmys will love (and are actually reliably castable), from Metalwork Colossus to Emrakul, the Promised End.  Now is a very good time to be a Timmy, not all standard formats have a litany of competitive standard decks with huge top end finishers.

Of course, if you’re looking at Emrakul 2: Spaghetti Boogaloo, it’s not a huge jump to see where O.G. Emrakul would fit in, and the answer is (for the most part) Legacy.  You might think of the very classic Sneak and Show deck as a Johnny deck, but it’s more of a hybrid between Combo and Impact.  A turn 2 Emrakul with backup is such a Timmy pleasing play- I would almost say it’s the baseline for what a Timmy is looking for.  That isn’t to say you can’t slam an early Emrakul in Modern, 12-Post and RG Tron are some of the craziest Timmy decks you could ask for, being able to cast Emrakul on turn 6 or 7 (which in Modern is very, very fast).

Legacy and Modern have so many decks that can cheat in or resolve a huge beat-stick early that it’s hard to list them all, so if you’re looking to play in Legacy or Modern as a Timmy, shop around- find a deck that speaks to you with its crazy one-ofs and strategy.  I’m not a Timmy but I’d assume the feeling of finding the right deck is that moment when you read the decklist and you can immediately picture yourself crushing your friends and foes with this huge tidal wave of creatures, or imposing your will upon them with a 15/15 flying spaghetti monster.  Really, it sounds like a warm, fuzzy feeling- somewhere between terror and eagerness.

If you’re looking to play Commander as a Timmy, you’ve definitely come to the right place, there are a near infinite amount of options, but the best feeling is being able to stick every 10+ mana spell you want in your deck, load the rest of it up with mana rocks/ ramp spells, toss in some lands and reliably resolve four or five rather obnoxiously large threats per game.  Commander games give you tons of leeway with life totals and game length, so you’re very likely to get to a point where you can resolve Ulamog 2.0 into Ulamog Classic and laugh maniacally as the rest of the table scrambles to keep up.

The only thing about being a Timmy that you can’t really fix is that Limited formats (Sealed and Draft) will usually not work out in your favour.  It’s really difficult to guarantee a draft deck that will reliably do big splashy things, especially without huge rare bombs.  Now, that’s not to say that it can’t happen, but I wouldn’t bet on getting a 200/200 Electrostatic Pummeler in your draft.

All in all, I think Timmy has the highest ability to have fun while not caring about winning, since the one or two games where the plan comes together? Those make it all worthwhile.  I wish you the best when you go to resolve that third Craterhoof Behemoth off of your Genesis Wave


Signing off from the back of a flying tentacle horror,

-Steven Hamonic

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