A quick update on this deck
As stated in my original "about me" creating the best possible deck is an iterative process - that is to say that the deck is likely to change over and over. Since I have released this guide I have found that I have changed out just about every card and tried just about every possible combo no matter how much I may have innitially been opposed to it. By being open to the possibility that I was wrong in some of my assumptions and to adjust to an ever shifting meta so early into this expansion I have created an MES deck that performs even better than I had hoped as I now sit in the top 15 in ranked play and hope to go even higher. I will be updating this guide soon with my current list, which I believe will fit into the longterm Waypoints meta better than what I innitially presented here. Ultimately there is not a huge difference in cards, but I would guess that at least 5-8 cards have been substitued for others that I have found to perform better overall.
Intro and About Me
Hey guys. This is Chace from Scrolls. Member of The Fairy Princess Guild Association(FPGA). I am the reigning ESL Scrolls season champion since the Spring 2014 season and consistently in the top 100. Admitedly, before Waypoints hit I had not been playing a ton of Scrolls. But with the new expansion it's exciting to examine everything going on and try to build the best possible deck. I am currently engaged in the iterative process of doing this with Mono Energy Structures or MES. Overall, I believe this is a very strong deck for the current meta and it is also a bit different from what I've seen other MES players running. This deckguide goes in depth about every card in the deck and why some weren't included so if you don't want to read much then turn away now.
Copper Automaton (x2) - You can often get good trade value from Copper Auto due to it's 1 turn cooldown and massive 4 damage for 1 cost. Copper Auto is an excellent card to have in your opening hand and it's easy to play during the lategame as a removal spunge or immediate threat. However, it is often a dead draw during the midgame and can set you back longterm if it is removed when you could have played a valuable structure. For this reason I have only included 2 in the deck at this time, but I will run tests with 3 of them in the future.
Potion of Resistance or POR (x2) - Another 1 cost card. POR is included in the deck to ensure that your structures, divinators, etc, get to keep on doing their thing. I find this card is often much less valuable in opening hands when compared to Copper Auto. This is because you need to first have a field presence to get any value out of it. That means you are probably putting it on a 3-4 cost structure you've just played and it can be hard to fit in a 1 mana drop early on when there are so many 3,4, and 5 drops in the deck that need to get onto the field. There are situations where it's a nice to have POR in your opening hand, but I find that I often end up saccing it. Decay is about the only faction I can think of that can somewhat easily remove a non structure unit with POR on it with Damning Curse and Soul Steal, so try to play POR on your structures when playing against Decay. Every other faction is probably going to have to wait out the 3 turn duration of POR in order to kill the unit. This card is also a very very strong play in the Energy vs Energy matchup be it the mirror match or vs Gravelocks. Basically, POR ensures that the game is going to go on longer, it's going to get to lategame, and as a MES player that plays to our advantage big time. I've experimented running 3 in the past and I find it's just not needed.
Overdrive (x1) - A card that can be awesome at times, but is really only useful on Ether Pump to cause 1 unexpected global damage in my oppinion. I've also had completely devastating Overdrive + Ether Pump interactions if the opponent is unable to remove it, but this combo is not reliable enough to include more than a single Overdrive. Can be used on Clock Library and Auto Forge in a pinch as well. I only use 1 Overdrive because in the past I've found that having 2 of these in hand at the same time and no structures in play that benefit from it can set you back.
Spark (x3) - Spark is a staple in just about every Energy deck ever and there's a reason why. It does 2 damage for 2 cost meaning that Spark will remove a lot of early game threats in order to help set the opponent back and get into mid and lategame. Often a terrific draw at any point in the game whether it's to destroy a unit or just bring one into kill range by some other means. I often like to have either a Spark or Burn in my opening hand.
Automata Forge (x3) - Auto Forge is another Energy Staple because at worst it's a 5 hp wall for 3 cost. At best it spits out 3 cost automatons for free every 3 turns in addition to that. With a divinator and Forge you can often flood the field quicker than your opponent can keep up. A terrific play against just about any faction or decktype. One protip I have for Forge is that I often see other MES players putting down 2 forges in the mirror matchup. I usually try to avoid playing 2 at the same time because no matter how far one side is ahead, in the mirror MES matchup your opponent is always going to have Board clears in the form of Thunder Surge and Sudden Erruption. For this reason I do not want to have a large field of connected units and set myself up for counter value plays or put my more important structures in range of being cleared entirely.
Charge Coil (x3) - Charge Coil is a neat structure because it attacks the very next turn after you play it. This allows you to often get improved value out of your removal spells like Spark, Burn, and VD. Can be a risky play in the mirror matchup due to Burn and the fact that a single 1 damage isn't usually a big deal to MES players. Also has relatively low hp so it often needs to be tucked behind another structure. Combos effectively with ether pump and can often make it hard to near impossible for your opponent to rebuild their board.
HellSpitter Mortar (x2) - Everyone's favorite card that you think sucks until it snipes an important creature because you allowed Mortar to stay around too long. However, I always view it as a bonus when my Mortar hits something. The reason I play Mortar is because it's a huge 6hp wall for just 3 cost that often requires 2 opponent attacks to be wasted on it before it'll be destroyed, which is terrific. This allows you to play Mortar up front and tuck other structures that are quite frankly more important in the back. I've run 3 of these in the past, but since Waypoints I've been playing with just 2 and I think I like it that way.
Machine Divinator (x3) - Is a good card if you play MES because reasons.
Power Trip (x3) - The best "new" card for MES. It came out during the Rebellion Expansion, was very OP with midrange Bombard combo craziness and was subsequently nerfed into oblivion by taking out the card draw. Now that the card draw mechanic is back I have found this card to be very strong for MES where it's easy to get to 8 resources, play Power Trip and draw a card. I also have no problem using this new Power Trip early on in the game if it means I can pull off 2 moves whether that's playing 2 structures or playing a structure and removing something, etc. It's a nice niche card for MES now and I'm surprised I haven't seen it more in MES decks. THIS CARD DOESN'T SUCK ANYMORE
Skull Shrine (x2) - This can be a tricky card to use playing as MES. Often there is no point to playing it on turn 3 if you have it in your opening hand. I think the midgame is where this card really shines as it can allow you to play 2 cards in a turn and outpace your opponent. Less useful in the lategame, which is why I have only included 2 here. I just like Powertrip better for the role of increasing resources, but it's a good card.
Burn (x3) - Is awesome. Does 3 damage and draws you a card. It kills a lot of stuff and it's just a terrific card. Always a good draw. I often like to have either a Burn or Spark in my opening hand.
Clock Library (x3) - I love Clock Library and I feel like for whatever reason I value it more than most. I see a lot of MES players putting Clock Librarys up front to block. I can see why afterall it is a bulky 5 hp wall, but in my mind for 4 cost I want to get something out of this card more than it just being a wall. It doesn't hurt that if this thing does proc you get 3 cards, which is always always awesome. This allows you to continue saccing cards for resources, maintain card advantage, fish out your removal cards and get into the lategame. Now that I just typed that all out, I guess it's easy to see why I value Clock Library so much in this deck. Can be a bummer when it's about to proc and then gets removed. Clock Library also needs a long 4 turns before it will go off. Often a good candidate for Potion of Resistance.
Ether Pump (x3) - Is annoying as hell when you have a Divinator out with it. Divinator + Ether Pump is love. Even without a Divinator this card is always a big threat so prepare for your opponent to try and destroy it before it goes off multiple times. I usually like to tuck this guy behind something to try and ensure it proc's at least 1 time. Probably the best structure in the deck.
Solemn Giant (x3) - Long a staple of MES decks so too is Solemn Giant in my build. I usually only play Solemn Giant if I can haste it and get immediate value so that means being at 10 resources or playing Power Trip to get there. At 4 hp it can be realy annoying for the opponent to remove as well and it kills just about everything in the game. This card synergizes so well with the overall theme of MES, which is to get into lategame and destroy your opponent.
Sudden Erruption (x3) - I've long contended that Sudden Erruption + Thunder Surge is not a fair combo with the way these cards work together. But hey, nobody has listened so now I'm here to abuse the combo and show you why it's so strong. Sudden Erruption even on it's own is just a great card once you get to about 7 resources. I like having 3 of these because it's now easier than ever to get to lategame as MES. Is a completely dead draw during much of the early part of the game, but you probably know that.
Ironclad Reaver (x2) - For so long I've only run with a single Reaver in my MES deck. It's often a great card but the 5 cost can be offputting in a deck that's more focused around structures. Well, since Waypoints I've been able to run 2 quite successfully and that makes me happy. Is a card that can give you some good options with it's ability and is also pretty hard to kill at 5 hp and also strong at 4 atk.
Machine Chant (x3) - It's removal and it permanently increases your energy AND it gets more powerful if you have a lot of structures on the field. It's pretty much that simple and it's pretty much a terrific card.
Thunder Surge (x3) - The evil twin brother of Sudden Erruption. Thunder Surge is a potentially devastating card in MES that is also nicely costed for us at 6. It just works really really well with everything I've already mentioned that MES decks are trying to accomplish. This is a card I will use in all sorts of situations. Sometimes it's to bring units in range of and ether pump or coil about to go off. Rarely I will use the card to deal 2 damage to a single unit if I feel it's worth it and don't have much else to play. Always a good card to hold onto if your opponent has a lot of cards in hand and it's starting to get into lategame. Curiously, it seems that since Waypoints I am saccing Thunder Surge a bit more than before, but this is just anecdotal evidence so I'm gonna keep running 3 until I see something wrong with that. Having 6 total Sudden Erruptions + Thunder Surges means that I will very reliably have several of these cards within a turn or two of eachother, which makes clearing the opponents board easier to accomplish.
Violent Dispersal (x3) - Before Waypoints I was starting to experiment with just 2x VD, but now that it's easier to get into lategame as MES I am running 3. Kills just about anything in the game, so it's got that going for it. A very good card to hold onto if you can afford to do so in order to remove an expensive opponent unit to get good value.
Chace, why didn't you include this card, YOU IDIOT!!
Useless Contraption - I like Useless Contraption. I was one of the few using 3 of them right after rebellion came out before people realized they were not in fact completely useless. I just feel like as power creep continues in Scrolls it's hard to justify having something present in the deck that literally does nothing except act as a middle of the pack wall. Useless contraption just started feeling a whole lot more useless after Waypoints came out. Was at times a nice card when the situation warranted it or to increase the damage of Machine Chant, but I think Useless Contraption is probably gone for good from my MES deck.
Hired Smuggler - Awesome when it works and shitty when it doesn't pretty much sums up this card. At 2 hp and 2 atk in a deck already filled with structures I just felt like the value isn't quit there. There's a lot of counters to a 2/2/2 card and I just thought it was time to move on. I think Smuggler will continue to be used by some other MES players, but I was already moving away from it in my MES deck before Waypoints and I don't think it has a place in my style of MES play.
Gravelocks - I think there may be some potential to flesh out some sort of hybrid structures deck with a Gravelock Elder and 1-2 other Gravelock sets included. I'm just not interested in taking my deck in that direction.
Iron Whip - I find that it's just not useful enough in my MES deck. It can be nice to proc a Clock Library or Ether Pump when it otherwise may have been destroyed, but to me there's not much different in waiting a single turn longer for a structure to go off. Can be used offensively but at just 1 damage I think that's not usually a good value play.
Plating - When they buffed this card I thought it might get better. It didn't. I don't like this card at all as MES because I think it's outclassed in every single way by Potion of Resistance. I only mention Plating because I see a decent amount of MES decks that run it and I do not agree with this. I think the wording and bonus ability of the card is perhaps a bit decieving to those who are less aware.
Proximity Mines - I am beyond ecstatic that this is no longer a needed card for MES players. Before Waypoints and due to the aggro meta Prox Mines were 100% necessary to play MES competitively, which I felt was a shame because it's really a shitty card imo. About the only cool thing with Prox Mines is that it does give you 2 structures with which to buff Machine Chant. But Proximity Mines are totally reactive and are often very easy for the opponent to react to since they are only 1 hp. Did I mention how happy I am that this card is no longer needed in MES?
In closing, MES is about 3 things in my oppinion. (1)Removal, (2)Getting into Lategame (3)Getting good value out of the decisons that you make. The first 2 here are pretty easy to figure out, but number 3 is a bit more nuanced and it can take time to develop these skills. Generally try to have a Spark or Burn in your opening hand in addition to a 3 cost structure. Try to sac for resources early and often throughout the match if you can. I try to get to 5 energy ASAP so I have the option to sac for resources and use Violent Dispersal if I draw one and can get a good value out of it. This deck has so much removal, many high HP structures, and several cards that boost up your resources so it's usually always going to get you to lategame. In my experience the deck will reliably get you to the point where the match will come down to whether or not your opponent can destroy you before you take over at around the 10 resource mark.
This concludes Chace's Energy Structures guide. Thanks for reading. Feel free to comment or ask any questions and I will try to answer and be helpful.