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Cabal Ritual Discussion
4 days ago
6 days ago
I would not rely so much on permanents in general, not even on Nekusar himself. From my experience I can tell tat you probably have only one chance with him, maybe a second if the game goes very long. This means you should be able to play one wheel followed by another and yet another without having to pass the turn once nekusar hits the board...I'd suggest Dark Ritual, Cabal Ritual, Seething Song, Desperate Ritual, Pyretic Ritual, Chrome Mox, Mox Diamond, Mana Crypt, Lion's Eye Diamond, Mana Vault, Grim Monolith, Mox Opal and even Simian Spirit Guide for that purpose. With every new Hand you draw there should be enough mana sources (not lands though) that you can cast the next draw spell. Waste Not does a great job, but it shouldn't be the only way to generate mana for multiple wheels in one turn.
Maybe you can find some useful ideas in my Nekusar list: Jesus, take the wheel!
I think two or three cards are wrong (meaning not as they are in my real deck, but I can't figure out what is different at the moment) in my list, but it has played very well until now. Having basically no permanents results in an interesting play style and it's hard to disrupt, unless you play against stax with a lot of taxing stuff.
2 weeks ago
You're pretty far along, so I'll be basing my advice on this: Food Chain Tazri
Plunge into Darkness, Mana Vault, Lotus Petal, Chrome Mox, Sylvan Library, Deathrite Shaman, and Carpet of Flowers are all pretty cheap right now, so you should pick them up before anything else. In the meantime Cabal Ritual and Cull the Weak can provide you with extra mana accel. Orcish Lumberjack and Tinder Wall also work if you have red, and you have enough forests for Arbor Elf to function. Cyclonic Rift and Abrupt Decay are also great (and cheap) board control in this build.
However the best thing you could be doing right now is improving your landbase. The quickest way to see results in a deck is to make sure you never have a land coming in tapped.
Get the cheapest lands first: Tarnished Citadel, Llanowar Wastes, City of Brass, Forbidden Orchard, Mana Confluence, Gemstone Caverns(!), Gemstone Mine, Thran Quarry, Reflecting Pool, Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth, Then the rest of your shocks, the cheap fetches, etc. Use checklands like Sunpetal Grove instead of ABUR duals, they're typically the best budget option, although more fastlands can be a viable option too. (All the following are trash that you should cut: Bad River, Flood Plain, Grasslands, Sandsteppe Citadel, Seaside Citadel. The tango-lands like Sunken Hollow are alright for now, but you should cut them as you upgrade.)
Remember to cut Amulet of Vigor, since it won't be helping you.
Once you get rid of the taplands you should also take the deck down to 32 lands. You have enough acceleration to afford it and it will improve your speed.
2 weeks ago
I completely understand its uses. The twisted mess of math behind this deck, however, makes things a little more difficult. I am actually unsure of how to explain this to someone who hasn't done some 500+ test plays wile recording the data so please bear with me.
The idea with a deck like this would be to get it to go off as fast as possible. As in turn 1. Each subsequent turn drastically lowers your chances of this. The faster you can get it going the lower your chances of being disrupted are. This is made ever more imperative with the choice to use Summoner's Pact as by the following turn if you haven't won you have now lost. Thus I chose to leave Summoner's Pact out of my decks Demoralizer and Bookwurm. This, however, is personal preference based off my uncanny ability to have the worst of luck.
So lets look at what you need in your hand.
Best case scenario you end up with Lotus Petal Dark Ritual and another one mana single card. You could, however, have Chrome Mox and also need a card to exile for the imprint. What if you don't have Lotus Petal or Chrome Mox + throw away black card? How about no Dark Ritual? Wild Cantor adds another card to the lineup. While Manamorphose will also do this for you and allow you to draw another card it has its own problems which I will likely cover (if I don't forget).
So we are now up to 4 needed cards in a best case scenario. As stated above and also corroborated in the "Statistics" section of Demoralizer, there is only about a 40% chance of a turn 1 win. Thus you would need to mulligan in order to get the cards you need while sacrificing hand size. This is where I put more of my stock in the gamble. However you lose hand size in the process.
Now add in the chances that you have more than 1 card that can't be in your hand (Angel of Glory's Rise Laboratory Maniac Azami, Lady of Scrolls and also Narcomoeba though it does you no good to discard Narcomoeba). Thus the likelihood of needing to use more than one Cabal Therapy on yourself just decreased drastically.
Yes I understand that you still have the option to use it on your opponent. However the only card that allows you to look at your opponent's hand is Gitaxian Probe, which there are only 4 of in the deck. Without it you are playing yet another game of chance. I also understand that you may know the type of deck your opponent is playing as people tend to stick very much to the meta in Legacy but you are still taking a gamble. What if you choose the wrong one? The likelihood of even getting to a point where you would take that gamble prior to casting by paying the flashback cost is next to none and by the time you would have cast with flashback they likely would have disrupted you already anyway.
Basically, this deck has no solutions for pushing into mid or late game. Remember, on the whole, Legacy is a turn 3 win format. If you can't get it to go off immediately you will lose. Spending 1 needed mana on a gamble that will likely push you into turn 4+ situation is not conducive to the play style of this deck. Personally it is a gamble I wouldn't take.
While Cabal Therapy IS a very important, nay necessary part of this deck, I just can't get behind having more than 2 in the deck. It is better to rely on mulligans to get the hand that you need. Then again you know my feelings on Summoner's Pact.
On a side note. Using Manamorphose can also be a bit of a gamble as you have no way of storing that 2 mana if you don't get the card you need. This can also push you into a turn 4+ situation.
3 weeks ago
I am experimenting in reducing mana costs in creatures abilitie as the deck tends to be mana hungry. Also, I have tried to shift closer to having it as cleric heavy as possible. True Conviction was put in as a secondary target for Academy Rector and general bad news for opponents. I will also be looking to reduce the amount of colorless in the decks lands to help speed it up.
4 weeks ago
From a playtesting persepective, I have never been mana-less while playing with only 33 (probably thanks in large part to the 98-card reduced deck size). Having Mana Crypt as a mainboard and getting a guaranteed 1-colorless from Kydele, Chosen of Kruphix each turn makes mana consistent enough (But you can never have too much land!). Sometimes the game will drag turn 3-4, but an Azusa, Lost but Seeking + Courser of Kruphix can change that almost immediately. The deck does a lot of spontaneous 1-turn mana blooms like that.
4 weeks ago
A few initial thoughts:
- I'm a bit unclear on why you're running Darkheart Sliver--is there a synergy there that I'm not seeing?
- Why omit Mox Diamond and Grim Monolith? Running the mana-positive rocks seems like it furthers your game plan in a pretty real way.
- In much the same way that Vampiric Tutor is good, Imperial Seal is good. I'm not sure you need Grim Tutor, but it's certainly worth considering.
- I'm very leery of Veteran Explorer; I know it easily gets you two more lands during your combo turn, but it also gives two lands to everyone else, and that's a dicey trade-off if you plan on pushing through disruption. What does including it do for you?
- SquirrelCraft seems a bit cute, especially since you're light on free sac outlets. Seeing as you're already running infinite mill as a meaningful line, Altar of Dementia doesn't seem an unreasonable option to consider if you're keen to win by squirrels for days, but I feel there are stronger options--Exsanguinate comes to mind.
- Elvish Spirit Guide seems largely inferior to Lotus Petal in this context; it's a 3-drop (Ad Nauseam/Dark Confidant) that only ever gives you one of your two colors.
- What are your main targets for Reanimate and Unearth? Is there any merit in Entomb, or are those purely ways to recur combo pieces?
- Dryad Arbor over a basic Forest could be very strong; you can grab it off fetchlands, and it makes T1 GSZ a ramp spell.
- On the topic of fetchlands, your colors give you access to seven* of them, and you should almost certainly run them all.
- If you haven't already, consider Toxic Deluge as an additional board wipe--it may never make it in, but it's an extremely cheap and potent card
- Depending on how full your graveyard gets when you're starting to go off, Cabal Ritual feels like it would be naturally at home alongside Dark Ritual and Culling the Weak
- Bloom Tender in a two-color deck feels dubious, but I'm not quite prepared to say it's necessarily wrong, either.
- Given your reliance on mana dorks, Benefactor's Draught functions as a ritual that cantrips; if you choose to pair it with Isochron Scepter, it also draws you your deck while giving you an outrageous amount of mana.
I hope some of this helps! I like the direction you seem to be taking this.
1 month ago
Lilbrudder So I have played about 30 or so games with my version which is more or less this list just missing a few of the hyper-expensive cards and it has been incredibly good. In that time, I have had three people recommend that I try Baral, Chief of Compliance and the more I think about it, the more I think that he deserves a spot. The cost discounting and occasional relevance when countering spells seems incredibly good with all of the rituals for such a low mana investment. Actually netting mana off of stuff like Manamorphose or just having Cabal Ritual be another Dark Ritual can make or break a win off of an early Ad Nauseam or Yawgmoth's Will. I will try it out in place of one of the cards I am missing, but I think that it may even have a place in the fully optimized list.