### Differences between combo decks requiring 2 cards and 3 cards

#### If you're an evil combo player, you may have wondered a few times why 2-card, 3-card, or 4-card combo have such different results

If you're an evil combo player, you may have wondered a few times why 2-card, 3-card, or 4-card combo have such different results. Everyone must agree that a 2-card combo is better than a 3-card combo and definitely better than a 4-card combo, but how much better? An honorable mention first for 1-card combo just like Titan-shift decks. The probability of getting a [card](Primeval Titan) or [card](Scapeshift) or [card](Summoner's Pact) by turn 5 is 93%. * TWO-CARD COMBOS * Let's take some examples. In Standard we had the famous Copy cat combo composed of [card](Guardian Felidar) + [card](Saheeli Rai). The combo consisted of blinking Saheeli with Felidar Guardian, so you can activate the planeswalker's ability once again to create a new Guardian, which blinks Saheeli and so on until you have endless cats on the field. *This combo requires 2 cards and you only have 4 copies of each in your deck, how likely are you to combo until turn 4?* The combo consisted of playing Saheeli Rai on 3 and Felidar Guardian on 4. * The probability that you draw the [card](Saheeli Rai) until turn 3 is best analyzed by the probability that you don't draw it *: it depends you don't draw it in your starting hand or the next 3 draws. This means that in order not to draw Saheeli Rai, you have to draw one of the other 56 out of 60 cards you have in your deck on the first draw, then one of the 55 out of 59, then the other 54 out of 58 and then thereafter ... For a total of 10 cards drawn until turn 3, you cannot draw Saheeli Rai. The probability of you drawing is 1 minus the probability of not drawing. [image](https://cardsrealm.com/images/uploads/1567451833.jpg) What if we consider that we are drawing more cards? [image](https://cardsrealm.com/images/uploads/1567446451.png) The probability of having the combo in the starting hand is very small, but as you draw more, the probability can be almost 50%. *And in Modern?* Standard has a more limited pool without so many tutors or cards with similar effects. So what happens if we see a 2 card combo in Modern? In Modern the accounts get a little weirder. [link](https://cardsrealm.com/decks/1c0m-krosherok-competitive-constructed-league)(Let's take the combo Ad Nauseam as an example). The purpose of the combo is to cast an [card](Ad Nauseam) after casting [card](Angel's Grace) or [card](Phyrexian Unlife); draw all cards from your deck; exile 3 [card](Simian Guide Spirit) to produce 3 red mana and thus cast a [card](Lightning Storm) for much damage by discarding all lands. The combo is only two cards because you only need [card](Ad Nauseam) + [card](Angel's Grace) or [card](Phyrexian Unlife). But you don't necessarily need Ad Nauseam since you can pick it up from your deck with [card](Spoils of the Vault). In total the deck has 3 Spoils of the Vault and 4 Ad Nauseam, totaling 7 cards copies of "Ad Nauseam"; and has 4 Angel's Grace and 4 Phyrexian Unlife, totaling 8 copies that allow you to combo without dying. So you want to draw at least 1 of 7 copies of Ad Naseaum and 1 of 8 copies of Angel's Grace. [image](https://cardsrealm.com/images/uploads/1567448538.png) In the end, the probability that you already have the starting hand combo is 40%, but after 8 draws the probability exceeds 80%. Remembering that the deck consists of a lot of card draws like [card](Serum Visions) and [card](Sleight of Hand); This makes it one of Modern's most consistent combos. * THREE CARD COMBOS * Now imagine that you have a 3 card combo. The [link](https://cardsrealm.com/decks/1cgm-killersuv-competitive-constructed-league)(deck Devoted Company or Devoted Vizier) for example can combo with [card](Devoted Druid) + [card](Vizir of Remedies) + [card](Walking Ballista). [card](Devoted Druid) + [card](Vizir of Remedies) generate infinite mana and the Ballista ends up dealing infinite damage. The deck usually has 4 druids, 3 Vizirs and only 1 Ballista; how likely are you to get at least 1 of each in the field? [image](https://cardsrealm.com/images/uploads/1567449188.png) At most you can get around 15% chance of combo if you draw a lot of cards. These are not very encouraging numbers, right? But the deck was made and adapted for the combo. To be sure, as there are many types of decks with Devoted Druid, let's talk about the list below. [deck](13984) In this version you do not need the [card](Walking Ballista) if you have [card](Duskwatch Recruiter // Krallenhorde Howler) in hand, as with infinite mana he will fetch the ballista. 1 [card](Shalai, Voice of Plenty) is another Ballista substitute for winning with infinite mana; while 4 [card](Chord of Calling) can fetch you any missing cards from the combo. 2 [card](Ranger-Captain of Eos) are there to tutor Ballista also if necessary. In total you have 8 copies of [card](Devoted Druid), 8 copies of [card](Vizier of Remedies) and 9 copies of [card](Walking Ballista) in the deck. [image](https://cardsrealm.com/images/uploads/1567450732.png) As the deck was set up, the probability of comboing until turn 5 is similar to the Ad Nauseam deck. The downside is that this deck has more ways for your opponent to interact with it; The advantage is that he can win games in other ways if necessary. * What if we focus all our strength in the combo God? * [deck](14033) This version is similar to the previous one with the addition of cards like [card](Finale of Devastation) which also allows you to win the game using infinite mana. Both 4 [card](Eladamri's Call) and 4 [card](Finale of Devastation), 3 [card](Eldritch Evolution) and 3 [card](Neoform) can fetch our combo cards. This means that we have at our disposal 18 copies of [card](Devoted Druid), 17 copies of [card](Vizir of Remedies) and 18 copies of [card](Walking Ballista) in the deck. [image](https://cardsrealm.com/images/uploads/1567450253.png) The deck is so, but so centered in comboing that the probability of having the combo is almost 100% after just a few draws. * CONSIDERATIONS * The calculations here counted the probability that you have 1 or more combo cards, with a bit of a defect in the calculation with tutors serving the same cards, although this does not practically affect the final calculation. These calculations did not count the interaction of the opponent either, nor if you can play the combo: you may not draw lands, but have the combo in hand for example. Plus, it doesn't count more complex moves like popping fetch to increase the likelihood of drawing a combo card. Also, to simplify the calculations we considered zero the correlations between two probabilities of at least one card each. *CONCLUSION* What I would like to conclude from this article is that the consistency of the combo depends much more on the number of tutors in your deck than the amount of cards it needs. In an environment like Standard it is very difficult to make 3-card combo decks consistent, the chance of comboing will be around 20 to 30%. But tutors are plenty in formats like Modern, Legacy or Vintage. Combos in these formats may require 3 cards and still be "oppressive".

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### Leon Diniz

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### Decks with Heliod, Sun-Crowned combo in Modern

The Theros Beyond Death spoilers are nowhere near the end, but we have already seen some rare and mythical cards from the upcoming January 24 release. This week it became obvious the community buzz about the White God [card](Heliod, Sun-Crowned), the new card can create a combo that only needs 2 cards: itself and [card](Walking Ballista). [image](https://cardsrealm.com/images/cartas/en/thb-theros-beyond-death-heliod-sun-crowned-18.jpg) [image](https://cardsrealm.com/images/cartas/en/aer-aether-revolt-walking-ballista-181.jpg) Did you notice the combo? [card](Heliod, Sun-Crowned) manages to give lifelink to [card](Walking Ballista) for 2 mana, so for each counter you remove from the ballista to deal 1 direct damage to your opponent, you also gain 1 life. [card](Heliod, Sun-Crowned)'s ability also allows you to put 1 +1/+1 counter on a creature each time you gain life, so for each damage the ballista pings, you can put an additional counter +1/+1 on it, that can be removed to deal more damage, becoming an infinite combo that allows you to gain infinite life and deal infinite damage to target opponent. Interesting no? Before in an article, [link](https://cardsrealm.com/artigos/differences-between-deck-combos-requiring-2-cards-and-3)(I explained the difference between 2-cards combos to 3-cards). On decks with 2-card combos, we have a nearly 50% chance of finding the combo in up to 7 draws, while on 3-card combos, the probability drops to 10%. Of course, redundancy in the combo allows you to change these odds, so we'll present Modern decks here with the combo of the moment trying to produce a lot of redundancy! * MONO-WHITE SOUL SISTER * It's been over 6 months since a soul sister deck has appeared on the metagame! But recently, last month, [link](https://cardsrealm.com/decks/13og-teteteshi1986-competitive-constructed-league)(we saw a deck) with [card](Martyr of Sands) doing 5-0 at MTGO . The deck is simple and straightforward, intended to get over 30 life to activate [card](Serra Ascendant) ability and create a significant clock in the opponent. As Heliod trigger ability works for each life gain, I changed [card](Martyr of Sands) for the soul sisters: [card](Soul Warden) and [card](Soul's Attendant) who can become a [card]( Ajani's Pridemate) with [card](Heliod, Sun-Crowned) in the battlefield. [deck](26647) The deck tutors the combo with [card](Ranger-Captain of Eos) that can get [card](Walking Ballista) when it enters the battlefield. The deck have a midrange stance, but with a 2-card combo that can win the game at any time and with cards that have extreme synergy with each other on the deck. * SELESNYA DEVOTED HELIOD * The other option we see with Heliod is to insert it into a familiar and already strong deck in Modern format: Devoted Druid! [link](https://cardsrealm.com/decks/1cgm-killersuv-competitive-constructed-league)(We made some changes to this 5-0 list here). [deck](26649) The old deck already had a combo: [card](Walking Ballista) + [card](Devoted Druid) + [card](Vizier of Remedies); so Ballista was already naturally entering the deck. The combo has the advantage of being protected by [card](Giver of Runes) and having many tutors: [card](Finale of Devastation), [card](Eladamri's Call), [card](Ranger-Captain of Eos) and [card](Once Upon a Time). * Have we missed any decks on which [card](Heliod, Sun-Crowned) can shine? Comment and let's add here in the article! *

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### Leon Diniz

Programador do site da Cards Realm. O Magic vai muito além das cartas. Somos pessoas, uma comunidade enorme.

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