|Commander / EDH||Legal|
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|Masters 25 (A25)||Common|
|Dragons of Tarkir (DTK)||Uncommon|
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Creature — Hound Shaman
Megamorph (You may cast this card face down as a 2/2 creature for . Turn it face up any time for its megamorph cost and put a +1/+1 counter on it.)
When Ainok Survivalist is turned face up, destroy target artifact or enchantment an opponent controls.
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Ainok Survivalist Discussion
1 month ago
I want to add Bane of Progress. What would you cut from your list if Bane of Progress was not in the deck? I want to keep Caustic Caterpillar and Ainok Survivalist in my list. You are playing Reclamation Sage in place of Caustic Caterpillar.
Is Sea Gate Oracle in your tuned list? Do you think it has a place in this list?
1 month ago
Iquasi, thanks so much for the detailed reply.
I understand your reasoning for running Sakura-Tribe Elder, Burnished Hart, and Solemn Simulacrum. My list replaces those with Mox Diamond, Chrome Mox, and Wild Growth (just added). I am playing all the good one mana dorks.
I am playing all the counterspells that you are. Heroic Intervention seems great in theory as board wipes are very common in my meta. It would seem that Heroic Intervention could be a backbreaker as everyone's board is cleared while you are sitting pretty. It was just added so it may prove to be good only in theory.
Balefire Dragon seems to be very similar to Pathbreaker Ibex, which I cut. They are very impactful cards IF they get to swing. There is rampant spot removal in my meta. I am doubtful that they survive to my following turn.
Maelstrom Wanderer is a pet card of mine as it was the first commander deck I built. My deck has to have some more aggro elements as I am not playing Ancestral Statue. Wanderer gives me cascades and haste to the whole team.
1 month ago
Frank, thank you for taking your time to write! If you could provide me with a link to your decklist I could maybe offer more assistance, but I'll try to reply to your points now. But first I must say a few words on the design of this deck. This list is far from being the most powerful Animar list out there and that is entirely intentional: my regular playgroup with long-time friends is not the most competitive and since this list was designed for that environment I have on purpose omitted a number of traditional Animar key cards such as Survival of the Fittest and the fast mana such as Mox Diamond, Chrome Mox, Mox Amber, Utopia Sprawl and one mana ramp dorks. If I were to power up the deck, I'd start with adding more fast mana and tutors.
Ancestral Statue I would recommend running as an 'emergency win button' for those games that last for hours. If you feel like adding more power, add Purphoros, God of the Forge and/or Walking Ballista, but even Statue itself helps put games away with arbitrarily large Animar attacking.
Part of the reason for me running Sakura-Tribe Elder, Burnished Hart and Solemn Simulacrum is that my meta runs quite a lot of removal, and these cards listed above all leave something behind in the case of Animar leaving the table. Since Animar draws quite a lot of hate I've tried to include cards that provide value even without Animar on the table.
Gilded Drake is a card I play in my 100% tuned combo-Animar list, but here I have omitted it for power level reasons. Caustic Caterpillar is nice, but I prefer running Ainok Survivalist over it since it synergizes better with Cloudstone Curio. I had Maelstrom Wanderer in the deck for a while but I eventually cut it for Balefire Dragon because in this list Wanderer can hit something fantastic, but more often than not it hits random 1- and 2-drops that don't really affect the game at all, so I cut it. The dragon does a lot of work in my meta: all players play creatures and having access to one-sided sweeping effect is just too good to pass. The Dragon is also handy in the 7-drop slot because of Birthing Pod. Tutoring up Bane of Progress with Imperial Recruiter, playing it blowing up everything and saccing it to Birthing Pod the next turn is one of my favorite lines in this deck :) With haste effects Balefire Dragon is just too good to pass. If you don't have it I'd recommend adding it if your meta runs slower creature decks like mine does. Bane of Progress is one of the Imperial Recruiter toolbox creatures that I have found very useful. This deck runs only a tiny number of artifacts or enchantments so it is basically a one-sided board-wipe. Heroic Intervention I have just found inferior to counterspells. Intervention doesn't stop Toxic Deluge or Living Death but Mana Drain does. Then again against Supreme Verdict counterspells look pretty awful, but I think your deck would be better off with counterspells if your mana base allows it. Spellseeker is a card I have considered, but it might be too strong for this meta. I do run it in my 100% powered list and I just love it.
Hardened Scales is a card I am considering at the moment and you might see it quite soon in my list :) It is a good card but I'll have to see if it is too strong.
3 months ago
What up JMCraig! Just wanted to report from my multiplayer tournament. Kiki-Jiki did some WORK! I got into top 4 and took 3rd with it. My group ended up getting 1st 2nd and 3rd for a total of 250 dollars in store credit and I was super happy about animar's performance that day. Question on Momir Vig, Simic Visionary though. I like the idea of him but I feel as though he still may be too slow. The idea of consistency is amazing but I feel as though Vizier of the Menagerie just does it better in that slot. I have to deal with a lot of torpor orb so Ainok Survivalist is key. I also have a worry that if I exile with the dweller, it will be a relevant later that I can't cast now. Have you had time to playtest lately and what are your thoughts on these cards so far if so? Thanks dude!
4 months ago
Biggest issue I see here is a lack of focus and not enough creatures for a creatures only matter deck.
Animar, Soul of Elements wants two main things: Cast creatures and get +1/+1 counters to cast larger creatures. Everything in the deck should be focused on those two goals.
Setting up the deck to achieve this purpose will make it efficient and powerful. All cards should therefore do one of the following:
- Ramp up to Animar.
- Protect Animar.
- Place counters on Animar.
- Cast game ending creatures for cheap or free.
- Draw cards to allow us to do 1 through 4.
Priority should be given to cards that does something now > does something before your next turn > does something on your next turn > does something eventually.
Because Animar offers a discount based on creatures played, the deck shouldn't be filled with only high cmc game enders, but creatures from low to high cmc, preferably with as little colored mana symbols as possible, to give the deck a natural progression to casting free or cheap high cmc game ending creatures.
Let's split the deck into 3 parts. Pre-Animar setup, Post-Animar setup, Finale.
Note that $: (0 to 0.99), $$: (1.00 to 4.99), $$$: (5.00 to 9.99), $$$$: (10.00 to 19.99), !$!: (20.00+)
Unnecessary on a computer, very helpful on a phone.
- Exotic Orchard is pretty good and cheap and can usually offer every color in multiplayer, especially if an opponent has a Command Tower out or even a Vivid Grove without even needing charge counters. - Kazoo lands such as Simic Growth Chamber, Izzet Boilerworks, and Gruul Turf are good in casual EDH where there is lack of land destruction and they artifically increase your deck ammount by posing as two lands in one. Though overall you do not want too many tap lands as you'll constantly be a entire turn behind.
- Zhur-Taa Druid creature ramp & burn. $
- Bloom Tender creature ramp. !$!
- Coiling Oracle ramp or card draw. $
- Cyclonic Rift removal or 1-sided board wipe. $$$$
- Explore ramp and card Draw. $
- Sakura-Tribe Elder creature ramp and color fix. $$
- Sylvan Caryatid creature ramp and color fix. $$
- Beastcaller Savant creature ramp and color fix. $$
- Kiora's Follower creature ramp or vigilance on a stick. $
- Rattleclaw Mystic creature ramp and color fix. $
- Walking Atlas potentially free creature ramp. $
- Simic Charm so versatile. $
- Lightning Greaves Protection and quick haste for a large creature. $$
- Spellskite For those , & removals. $$$
- Ring of Kalonia Ramp every turn and makes Animar a lot more threatening. $
- Sage of Fables Emergency card draw. $$
- Pestermite Vigilance, chump blocker vs flying or stopping a giant creature. $
- Guided Passage One of the best card draw and pick your poison spells ever. $$
- Pir, Imaginative Rascal A creature hardened scales and specific tutor. $$
- Cloudstone Curio An auto include if you can afford it. $$$$
- Temur Ascendancy Makes all your casted creatures threatening and some card draw. $
- Phyrexian Metamorph Costs 2 life and can do so much for you. $$$
- Solemn Simulacrum Free ramp, chump blocker and card draw. $$
- Faerie Artisans It doesn't look like much, this is card can get crazy. $$
- Toothy, Imaginary Friend A growing monstrocity that explodes into cards. $$
- Silent Arbiter Protection against swarm decks. $$
- Xenagos, God of Revels Game ender. $$
- Vesuvan Shapeshifter On your upkeep, you may pay to clone the biggest and baddest mofo on the field. $
- Deepglow Skate Potential huge ramp for just . $$$
- Progenitor Mimic Very dangerous to copy one of the heavy hitters in this deck. $$
- Consecrated Sphinx All the card draw. $$$
- Deadwood Treefolk Repeatable creature recusion. $
- Steel Hellkite Situational, but very deadily against token decks. $
- Great Oak Guardian Great, quick surprise block when tapped out. $
- Pathbreaker Ibex Quick, game ender. $$
- Thunderfoot Baloth Setup for getting past defenses. $$
- Scourge of the Throne Depending on the situation, can be deadly. !$!
4 months ago
Nice breakdown of costs there, additionally we have the creature abilities such as Caustic Caterpillar, Ainok Survivalist and Den Protector but that is also very narrow and near the bottom of your list. I've really only had it involved in a couple games, it greatly helped in one and somewhat helped in another so my experience is limited and I need to test it some more. Thanks again for the response!
4 months ago
I definitely understand that need to tinker. It's fun to see if you can make something more efficient or if you can find a new way to apply it.
If you are currently considering Ainok Survivalist and Dream Stalker as flexible slots, I suppose that it could be a decent time to test out Phantasmal Image if you haven't already. From my experience:
Cons: Like any clone spell, its viability and power vary with whatever is on the battlefield. The Image is also a poor clone to use if you are looking to clone something that you expect to want to interact with. It has negative synergy with Cloudstone Curio.
Pros: It's cheap to cast, can double as a card-draw creature if you already have one out, is even better as an extra copy of a tutor creature, and has on multiple occasions allowed me to keep the storm train going by copying Peregrine Drake. Another thing worth noting is that the ETB triggers of Shrieking Drake, Dream Stalker, and Ancestral Statue don't target so you can actually use them to return the Image to your hand if you need to.
I'll admit that I miss the days when Legendary permanents destroyed each other when there were two of the same Legendary on the battlefield. Back then the Image could count as a kill spell for commanders and the Metamorph could destroy Umezawa's Jitte. Oh well, those are days long past.
My rough (and situational) priority list for Image targets is:
1) Tutor creatures.
3) "Enchantress" creatures like Primordial Sage
4) Card-draw creatures.
5) An opponent's hate bear creature like Thalia, Guardian of Thraben if there are fast combo decks that I want to hamper more.
I'm not hard-set on that priority listing though. I'll generally go with whichever of those categories happen to be on the board at the time. I'm not against just cloning a mana dork if it means putting a counter on Animar and putting my ramp for the next turn that much further ahead.
4 months ago
I'd keep Phyrexian Metamorph in the deck. Although the Imperial Recruiter + Shrieking Drake + Phyrexian Metamorph combo is more for 1v1, there have been a lot of times where I've used it to pump out a quick eldrazi that was in my hand. Because the Metamorph will get to bounce the eldrazi back to your hand once, that's still drawing 8 cards or exiling 4 permanents. The metamorph has also been really helpful for netting more mana or cards for free while trying to storm off by copying a Mulldrifter or Peregrine Drake. I've used the card for so many different plays that I have a hard time picturing the deck without the versatility it offers.
Between Dream Stalker and Man-o'-War, I would be more inclined to cut the Stalker first. For this deck's purposes, its mostly just a slightly worse extra copy of Shrieking Drake. Man-O'-War has extra utility in that it can bounce a blocker, Recover Animar if someone stole it with Gilded Drake, and in my playtesting it is one more way to delay a Hermit Druid deck by a turn by bouncing the druid.
Regarding the card-draw creature options that you listed, It's hard for me to ignore that Whirlpool Warrior and Champion of Wits only let you filter cards. They don't net you any additional cards in hand, they don't even replace themselves as a card in hand. However, I like that the Warrior can mess with opponent's hands. The downside to it in comparison to the Champion is that the Warrior is useless if you already have one combo piece in hand and are trying to dig for another piece.
Slithermuse used to be an Animar staple years ago when the first competitive versions of the deck were floating around. I used to run it, but the fact that it isn't guaranteed to draw you cards and that its triggered ability is when it leaves play were hassles. The double blue mana to keep it on board was awkward, especially since you weren't getting immediate value out of it, and casting it for the Evoke cost meant that it wasn't going to stick around long enough for you to use bounce shenanigans to net a ton of value out of it. The card always seems to hover on that borderline of being playable, and I guess it would be worth it if your meta has a lot of control decks that like to keep their hands stocked with cards.
I was mulling over the pros and cons of Slithermuse vs Sandstone Oracle as replacements for Kozilek in low budget Animar builds last night but I didn't really put in enough thought about it to come to a conclusion.
Foul Emissary comes with the chance that it won't find a creature in the top four cards, but considering how many creatures are in the deck I think that the statistical chance of that happening is low enough that it is worth consideration anyway. If it doesn't hit anything that means that it probably filtered away a bunch of non-essential ramp and land cards, although there's a good chance that tutor spells will also get swept away by it's ability. I'll admit, I'd probably want to smack my head against the table if I was in a pinch and the Emissary filtered away a tutor that was on the top of my deck without netting me a creature.
So of the options you've listed, my priority choices for cards to take out would be:
1) Ainok Survivalist. 2) Dream Stalker. 3) Man-o'-war. 4) Phyrexian Metamorph.
And my priority list for card-draw creatures to put in would be:
1) Slithermuse (meta dependent). 2) Champion of Wits. 3) Whirlpool Warrior. 4) Foul Emissary.