|Commander / EDH||Legal|
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|Duel Decks: Divine vs. Demonic||Common|
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Creature — Horror
When Abyssal Gatekeeper is put into a graveyard from the battlefield, each player sacrifices a creature.
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Abyssal Gatekeeper Discussion
2 months ago
3 months ago
This is definitely the best Marchesa deck I've seen on the site (besides my own, of course, hehehe). I think a low-curve deck is the best way to play Marchesa and you've clearly got that here. I'm just gonna shotgun some suggestions from my personal experience with the deck.
First off, you have no graft creatures, and I strongly urge you to try them. At least replace Olivia, Mobilized for War with Vigean Graftmage, which does the same thing without having to discard cards, and has crazy upside. Assemble a sac outlet, a value creature, Marchesa, and a grafter, and you can sac the grafter and value creature on your turn, return them on end step, then repeat the process on each opponent's turn. With your amount of tutors, Vedalken Graftmage should probably be good enough since it's the lowest CMC grafter, but Cytoplast Manipulator or Helium Squirter might be worth trying as well.
Trinket Mage is a house, and he comes with plenty of options. You even own a Mana Crypt, so I feel as though you have no excuse. I understand the 3 drop slot is crowded but Trinket Mage for Mana Crypt is a net 1 mana play, and he can also find Skullclamp and Sensei's Divining Top. Basically, recurring it will quickly leave you with a ton of mana and cards. I also play Heap Doll and Arcbound Worker which look poor but the Doll can recur itself alongside Marchesa without a sac outlet and you currently lack grave hate, and the Worker can recur a value artifact creature on each player's turn like a graft creature would.
Dark Confidant and Grenzo, Dungeon Warden are strong 2drops that also synergize pretty well with Marchesa. I'd rather play a Confidant on 2 than a Signet, that's for sure. On that note, I've tried most of the 2drops you're currently playing, and been disappointed with Lightning Mauler, Signets, Lightning Greaves, Nightscape Familiar, and Blood Artist. The mana cards are nice but if you have another 2drop it's usually better to play that and then the rocks are not great for the rest of the game. Meanwhile, haste enablers are basically just inferior graft creatures, and while they're nice for curving out, I think playing a value creature or sac outlet on 2 is far better and worth going all in on.
Necropotence feels a little unnecessary when you can just draw a billion cards anyway by assembling the Marchesa engine. Though it is a damn good card, and nice to have when the Marchesa thing gets broken up.
Big Game Hunter is probably the best removal guy. I like drawing a zillion cards then casting him for B in my cleanup step. Fulminator Mage is another utility 3 that can really come in handy, and it recurs itself alongside Marchesa without the need for a sac outlet.
Play Mindslicer. It's a great way to beat combo and battlecruiser alike. You'll rebuild from it better than anybody else. Well, sometimes the graveyard decks will get you, but they might not be well set up enough by turn 4 to do anything.
I feel like the wheels sorta come off here when you get above 3 cmc. Murderous Redcap does combo but is a dead draw too often otherwise, and the same is true of Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker. Kiki is trying to do what your deck already does, and does it slower. Kiki can recur an ETB once per turn cycle while a graft creature usually gives you 4 (1 for each player in the game). Treasonous Ogre is cool but red mana isn't terribly useful and Ashnod's Altar is more efficient ramp. Definitely consider Ashnod's Altar and Phyrexian Altar, they're more explosive sac outlets than Yahenni and Bloodthrone Vampire (though admittedly somewhat more vulnerable). River Kelpie is too much to pay for a Grim Haruspex effect, Grimgrin is quite slow and it sucks having to wait turns and then pay so much for a sac outlet, and Zealous Conscripts is strong but I've often found I'd much rather cast Treachery or Act of Aggression (which is also instant speed removal). Time Warp is great but feels rather out of place and I like to be flashy and go for the big Temporal Trespass. Getting a value creature on board and having a 3 mana time walk is pretty nice when trying to recover from getting your field picked apart.
Mikaeus, the Unhallowed actually sucks because of the "non-Human" clause. Double recurring is sweet value but graft creatures also let you recur your creatures a ton while also protecting themselves AND marchesa.Also, I've found that you don't really need a combo finisher. Just getting your engine online is usually enough, and when it isn't, kill them all with Flayer of the Hatebound damage. Then again, I understand if your local meta makes a combo finish necessary.
Lastly, Abyssal Gatekeeper is nice for similar reasons to Nevermaker, since it can be instant-speed removal on board when needed. However, I just cut it from my build, because you just can't cast it until you have everything else in place because people love to 2 for 1 you by killing it which will kill anything else you've played, so I recommend against it.
I feel like this is the most well-built Marchesa deck I've seen so far and you have a good understanding of how best to use the commander, and that understanding will advance once you cast a Vigean Graftmage.
5 months ago
Abyssal Gatekeeper and Call to the Grave both force opponents to sac creatures. Also Fauna Shaman is another greater creature tutor and allows you to dump creatures in your graveyard for Meren to bring back
5 months ago
Erebos, God of the Dead should be in the list. Anytime life loss is a thing you need to stop the life gain decks or they'll have an unfair table advantage.
6 months ago
Cut -- Abyssal Gatekeeper (unlike Fleshbag and Co, this can hurt more than it helps since it isn't around to feed itself) Bloodghast (no real advantage with Shirei, and is inconsistent as redundancy), Bloodthrone Vampire (doesn't offer you anything for feeding it), Coffin Queen (better with high cost ETBs), Crypt Rats (doesn't function with your commander), Deathgreeter (life gain is pointless), Disciple of Phenax, Falkenrath Noble, Hell's Caretaker (too grindy).
Also consider, Dance of the Dead, Mindslicer (you only need to sac this once with a draw engine and you've basically won), Toxic Deluge, Mesmeric Orb (most efficient yard filler ever), and Ad Nauseam.
You could also safely cut some of the 0 mana creatures since they don't really do anything, Liliana, Heretical Healer Flip, and Dark Prophecy (you already have a lot of draw, and this can actually kill you if you have a slow or unclear path to victory).
Some additional lands to consider: Inventors' Fair, you have enough artifacts to satisfy it, and it tutors some of your most needed cards; Westvale Abbey Flip can get you out of a jam if you pay too much life; and Wasteland/Tectonic Edge/Dust Bowl help you play a little more into Crucible of Worlds.
6 months ago
I didn't know about Perplex really cool counter with transmute- its going in mine. Another option counter you may like is Grip of Amnesia- this choice won't be so hard for some decks but if they're doing graveyard stuff it should make them really think.
Cards in your colors that I've found to be strong choices-
Rhystic Study- a 1 mana tax that will help you draw alot
Phyrexian Tyranny- good way to drain the table but beware it draws a lot of table hate to you.
Painful Quandary- table hate galore but strong in the late game
Vile Consumption- generally less hated than mogis or tyranny but the 1 life adds up.
Abyssal Gatekeeper- a good way to deter attackers as they'll lose a creature as will everyone else.
Noxious Vapors- screws over artifact heavy decks and mono colored decks.
Infernal Offering- political edict that also reanimates. Make a few friends or enemies.
Custody Battle- this card is amazing on commanders unless you have a global sac choice in play. they are forced to give their commander away and once its under an opponent control everyone can just pass the commander around away from the owner.
7 months ago
If I am playing edh reanimator, the Skullclamp is an autoinclude for me, because as previously mentioned, with 40 life it's hard to win with one dude, so playing a reanimator engine for shenanigans is a really good way to go. Try things like Grim Haruspex,Apprentice Necromancer,Gift of Immortality,Sun Titan,Panharmonicon,Eternal Witness,Unearth,Adarkar Valkyrie,Golgari Germination,Dictate of Erebos,Ashnod's Altar,Phyrexian Altar,Abyssal Gatekeeper,Sepulchral Primordial,Champion of Stray Souls,Nath of the Gilt-Leaf,Sadistic Hypnotist,Tortured Existence,Sylvan Safekeeper,Dryad Arbor,Demon of Dark SchemesThe list goes on, but even just with these you are hitting infinite Mana, discard, creature tokens, opponent sacrifice, card draw not to mention the fact even before you add more cards this list will be quite resilient to disruption. I would add another 50 cards to this list but I think you see where I am going with it already.