Balustrade Spy

Balustrade Spy

Creature — Vampire Rogue

FlyingWhen Balustrade Spy enters the battlefield, target player reveals cards from the top of his or her library until he or she reveals a land card, then puts those cards into his or her graveyard.
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Balustrade Spy Discussion

Duskfell on Mill Deck

3 days ago

Maybe Increasing Confusion? Returned Centaur is alright and Balustrade Spy can be nice. Grisly Spectacle can destroy a creature and if it's strong then mill decently. Visions of Beyond is nice.

Not sure how good it would be, but Spelltwine could be neat.

ShokuYuki on U/B Mill

1 week ago

I think there are a lot of ineffective cards in there. You just put a lot of 1~2 mill cards without a strong strategy, and a lot of heavily costed cards. That's not commander.


Creatures: [8 Substitutions, total 10 creatures (-2 creatures)]

Remove: 1 Jace, Vryn's Prodigy  Flip2 Nemesis of Reason1 Balustrade Spy1 Belltower Sphinx1 Szadek, Lord of Secrets1 Phenax, God of Deception1 Merfolk Mesmerist2 Mirko Vosk, Mind Drinker

Add: 4 Jace's Phantasm3 Hedron Crab

Lands: [6 Substitutions, total 22 lands (-2 lands)]

Remove:1 Nephalia Drownyard2 Duskmantle, House of Shadow1 Dimir Aqueduct4 Jwar Isle Refuge

Add: 1 Drowned Catacomb1 Watery Grave2 Ghost Quarter2 Oboro, Palace in the Clouds

Enchantments: [2 Substitutions, total 4 enchantments (+1)]

Remove: 1 Curse of the Bloody Tome1 Jace's Erasure

Add: 3 Sphinx's Tutelage

Artifacts: [0 substitution, total 0 artifacts (-5 artifacts)]

Remove:Codex ShredderKraken's EyeSands of DeliriumTablet of the GuildsKeening Stone

Sorcery: _[7 Substitutions, total 7 sorcery (-3 sorcery)]

Remove:2 Mind Grind3 Mind Sculpt2 Tome Scour2 Traumatize

Add: 3 Mind Funeral3 Breaking

Instants: _[4 Substitutions, total 16 instants (+10 instants)]

Remove:1 Induce Paranoia2 Psychic Spiral1 Vapor Snag

Add: 2 Psychic Strike4 Archive Trap4 Visions of Beyond4 Thought Scour

Planeswalker [1 substitution, total 1 planeswalker]

Remove: 1 Jace, Telepath Unbound  Flip

Add:1 Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver


Tormod's Crypt


Crypt Incursion

Go for the Throat

Hurkyl's Recall


fluffybunnypants on Can someone explain manaless dredge?

1 week ago

In my experience, Balustrade Spy is a Dread Return target for the combo kill.

Check it out in action right here.

NecroPony on Can someone explain manaless dredge?

1 week ago

I know you use Balustrade Spy to mill yourself, but how do you get the spy into play?

square711 on A Milli A Milli A Milli A Milli

2 weeks ago

This will probably sound a bit too blunt, but I don't know how to put it any other way: with the exception of Consuming Aberration (which you should never play more than 2 of), all your creatures are terrible. Awful. Completely useless even in the most casual setting. All of them cost five or six mana, which means you have to wait until turn five to cast even a single one of them. You'll be dead by then.

Don't play spells that cost more than 4 mana unless they win you the game on the spot (Consuming Aberration does that... sometimes... maybe). In Modern (this is tagged as Standard, but I assume it's a Modern deck), people can kill your creatures for much less mana than you paid for them. You tap 5 lands to play Mirko Vosk, they tap one land for Path to Exile and kill him. You tap 4 lands for Balustrade Spy, they tap one land for Lightning Bolt and kill him. The only creatures you want in a mill deck are Hedron Crab, Jace's Phantasm, Snapcaster Mage (to reuse your mill spells) and maybe Nihilith (to suspend) - anything else is crap.

Your noncreature spells also suffer from the same problem that they cost too much and do too little. Breaking is fine, Tome Scour is passable, but everything else needs to go away - especially Mind Grind, which may very well be the worst mill spell of all time. Why not play Mind Funeral instead? For 3 mana, Mind Funeral does what Mind Grind needs SIX mana to do.

Other creatures/spells you may want to look into, besides the aforementioned Mind Funeral, are Glimpse the Unthinkable, Archive Trap (coupled with Ghost Quarter so you can cast it for free) and Mesmeric Orb. You also need a better land base (Polluted Delta, Darkslick Shores, Drowned Catacomb, Underground River) - and keep in mind that 21 lands is too little for a deck that wants to play 5+ mana spells on curve. You should be running 23-24 lands.

-Logician on U/B Mill (Splash Green)

3 weeks ago

Honestly, you're only playing white for Anafenza, the Foremost. I don't understand that at all. That seems like a very easy cut to drop from 5 color to 4 color. Then from there, you could put something else in instead of Kolaghan's Command to make this deck so much more reasonable at just 3 colors. In my experience, putting a fourth color into a deck is only rational if the following is true.

  1. You have the dual lands necessary for a four-color mana base.
  2. You have at least 3 different cards between mainboard and sideboard that utilize that color for metagame purposes.

You'll want to replace Sylvan Caryatid with a 1-drop mana dork so that you can drop your Mind Funeral and Sphinx's Tutelage on turn 2 instead of turn 3, which will also require an Overgrown Tomb. Perhaps Elves of Deep Shadow.

Since you're playing Sphinx's Tutelage, why not play Day's Undoing? How about an end of turn Notion Thief on your opponent's turn, and then slam a Day's Undoing on your turn for 14 cards, milling a minimum of 28 cards (30 cards because of your draw step). Certainly Notion Thief will be more effective than Mirko Vosk, Mind Drinker. Mirko Vosk is a trap. It looks like a good card when you read his ability, but you actually have to hit your opponent with a 2/4 flying that costed you 5 mana. That's really not easy to do. Consuming Aberration in a format with delve and pretty much infinite graveyard removal seems way to easily played around. Do you really think Balustrade Spy is strong enough? Four mana investment for milling maybe 3 cards on average? Your Glimpse the Unthinkable mills thrice that much for half the mana. Certainly you can see how much better that is.

I apologize for challenging you on over half your deck. I tend to do that. :( What's your goal for this deck? Compete reasonably at a local modern tournament? Play casually with your friends?

lagotripha on Who needs any lands when you have a graveyard?

4 weeks ago

tmanc1ok, creaturless dredge short intro time.drawing a card and ending your turn let you drop a dredge card to your graveyard, hopefully Phantasmagorian while you have a second in hand, letting you discard your hand. you can then drop a reasonable proportion of your deck to the graveyard with the extra card draws from Gitaxian Probe orStreet Wraith replaced with dredge. This should give you creatures through Ichorid, Nether Shadow and narcomeoba and a Dread Return in your graveyard. Hopefully Dread Return a Balustrade Spy, targeting yourself, to put your library into your graveyard. then dread return twice more with the aid of Bridge from Below dropping Flayer of the Hatebound and Golgari Grave-Troll. Since you dredge so much of your library you have good odds of getting everything.

Programmer_112 on Omni7ron-5000

1 month ago

So, the issue is that you're trying to win the early game with bad cards. Delirium Skeins is just awful. Since you can't access your graveyard but a lot of opponents can (Snapcaster Mage, Lingering Souls, etc.), and you can't hit their important cards. Selective discard, like Inquisition of Kozilek and Thoughtseize, is a very powerful thing, and is normally the only type of discard worth using (exceptions include Liliana of the Veil and that's pretty much it). Void Snare is worse than Vapor Snag, and not-quite-strictly worse than Echoing Truth. It's just outclassed by so many other cards, in competitive Modern, you can't afford to use it. As said above, Liliana Vess is quite bad.

Some other cards don't make sense either. Dictate of Kruphix doesn't really do anything at all here, so I question its inclusion. Similarly, Balustrade Spy and (to a lesser extent) Pestermite seem to be pretty useless (Pestermite might be decent for untapping your own lands, but it's not great).

Basically, you have a solid idea, but most of the cards you're trying to support it with just aren't up to snuff in Modern. Your answers need to be fast, effective, and broad. Your win-condition needs to be powerful, consistent, and resilient. Your other cards need to either a) set your opponent back, or b) further your own gameplan, and there are a lot of cards here that don't do either.

Power / Toughness 2/3
Color(s) Black
Cost 3B
Converted cost 4


Format Legality
Legacy Legal
Vintage Legal
Commander / EDH Legal
Modern Legal
Duel Commander Legal

Printings View all

Set Rarity
Gatecrash Common

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