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Counter target spell. You may cast a nonland card in your hand that shares a card type with that spell without paying its mana cost.
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Thanks for the +1. :)
I'm trying to avoid three kind of cards: 1. expensive cards that I don't own (Cryptic Command , Mana Drain and Patron Wizard are among them, although I recognize those are great, no doubt), 2. conditional counterspells (Condescend , Ixidor's Will , Power Sink and the like) and 3. cards with too high a cmc (Counterlash , Desertion , Scattering Stroke and Stifle since I'm trying to keep my counters bellow 3 cmc.
The only exceptions I'm making are Rewind , Syncopate and Put Away because the 1st untaps is almost free, the 2nd exiles the threat (which is important in my meta) and the 3rd recovers me something that can be quite important).
Gather Specimens and Day of the Dragons is a cute combo. Quite so. But it also requires a lot of mana available. I've even cut out Day of the Dragons because it tends to be a bit too expensive for what I want.
Draining Whelk and Deadeye Navigator are a bit overkill. Someone else on my playgroup brought that combo into play once and everyone else disliked it, considering it a dick move. I'm not looking forward to incorporate that combo here. I believe that I don't need the Navigator to maximize CiP effects though since I don't have that many creatures that do stuff when they come into play.
Voidmage Prodigy is something I'm quite unsure about though. I think he'd play better in a UB deck dedicated to wizards. I don't think I'd like to sacrifice my wizards.
There's also a sweet combo with Day of the Dragons and Gather Specimens that basically lets you take control of all of your opponents creatures! What about Mana Short , Draining Whelk , Condescend , Counterlash , Cryptic Command , Declaration of Naught (for commanders!), Desertion , Discombobulate , Dismiss , Exclude , Ixidor's Will , Last Word , Lay Bare , Mana Drain , Patron Wizard , Power Sink , Psychic Trance , Rethink , Sage's Dousing , Scattering Stroke , Spell Contortion , Spelljack , Thassa's Rebuff , Thwart , Stifle and Voidmage Prodigy ? They're all really good counters and some are wizard specific! I love the mono blue! +1!
Counterlash counterpoints: Sure, you will probably have something in that 20-card hand that shares a card type with what you're countering, but would you want to cast it at that point? Consider the following situations:
Countering an instant: Your instants are mostly counterspells. You're probably not going to want to cast another counter for free while already countering a spell. The few other instants you have, Evacuation for example, you want to cast when you can get the most value from it, not just as a free spell tacked onto a counter.
Countering a sorcery: Your sorceries are either wraths or effects that make all players discard their hand and draw new ones. There's also Skyscribing and Prosperity , which you don't want to cast for free, so I'm not counting them. Anyway, wraths, like Evacuation , you want to time so you get the most value out of them, and the Time Reversal effects you want to cast when you don't have anything good in hand, since otherwise you could be discarding good cards that could help you win the game.
Countering a creature: This will probably be the best case scenario, since a free creature is almost always good and you don't usually care what the board situation is (unless you're about to wrath)
Countering an enchantment, artifact, or planeswalker: These won't come up too often I think, and your artifacts are pretty cheap anyway, and you only have 3 planeswalkers so chances are you don't have one in hand or you've already cast it. Enchantments can maybe give you good value, similar to creatures.
Countering a land: You can't do that :(
So, that's why I don't think you should keep in Counterlash . However, feel free to test it out and see if it works.
thanks for the tips! I'll take most of your suggestions, except for the following:
As for stuff to put in, I'll go with Curiosity for the combo, and think about Black Sun's. The others don't really bother me; I predict that I'll have an easy time dealing with planeswalkers since I'm doing so much direct damage to players; and I can always just redirect that to the walkers
Okay, I've finally taken a look at this deck and here are some of my thoughts (these are cards to remove, since you've mentioned wanting to cut down):
Hex : You already have lots of removal/wraths, and the destroy 6 creatures is more annoying than you might think. There will be times when there are 5 creatures out, and one of them is really annoying, but you won't be able to kill it since all you have is this card. I'd take it out.
Promise of Power : You already have so much card draw that affects all players, so I don't think you need this, since it's quite color intensive, and you may not have the life to spare. I have it in my Olivia deck since it's mostly black and I have life gain in there.
Wash Out : This is not as good as, say, Whelming Wave , since it's best when all your opponents are playing the same color, and therefore it's really situational. I'd rather have unconditional bounce, and you have lots of bounch already.
Counterlash : 6 mana is a lot to hold up turn after turn, and it's really bad if you don't have something in hand you want to cast at that exact moment AND that matches the card type you're countering. I'd much rather go for a Dissipate or something, or even a Rewind if you want a free counter.
Jace, Memory Adept : Sure, his ultimate is game ending with Nekusar, but you have to make sure you have Nekusar out AND get Jace to ultimate. Otherwise, he's pretty lackluster, although he's a planeswalker that can serve as an alternate wincon, so do consider keeping him.
Tibalt, the Fiend-Blooded : I was half-joking when I suggested him. The fact that he needs to live 3 turns to use his -4 ability (the only reason he's in the deck) is pretty bad, especially since he dies afterwards. I'd recommend cutting him.
Dragon Mage : Expensive and doesn't have haste, but synergistic effect. Consider taking him out, especially if you're going with a creature light build.
Nightscape Familiar : Ramps and blocks I guess? But otherwise doesn't really fit in here.
Thought Gorger : Doesn't fit with creatureless build, and you don't really want to be attacking anyway.
Stuff to maybe put in:
Black Sun's Zenith : I would put this in since it gets indestructible creatures, and it permanently weakens a creature even if it's not destroyed.
Toxic Deluge : This is a really good card, since you can basically hit anything with it as long as you pay enough life, although unlike with Oloro, I'm not sure you'll have that much life to spare.
Hero's Downfall : Sometimes, you just really need to kill a creature or planeswalker at instant speed.
Take a look at my deck that is for edh as well that is about mill and just board control. It's also dimir, and it has phenax in it, but I use Oona, Queen of the Fae . Honestly.. she's the better general Imo. She's 6 to cast, but X+1U/B, then mill hardcore, and you get tokens for each color named milled that shares that color. You also don't need creatures to come out onto play, plus when you do get phenax out.. you can use the mass tokens to mill.
My deck is a bit more expensive, but it shows what you should have (the tutors are all necessary, so save up for them). I run basically pure control, and mill, with lots of creature control board wipes. I also run Return to Dust and I should be running Damnation in that, but it's a horse a piece at this point in my deck, cause I also run Oblivion Stone as well.
I'm not gonna tell you how to run your deck, but I'll give you cards you should have if you want to run mill with creatures, or pure mill with control, and some creatures.
Pure Mill board control list of MUST HAVES as follows:
They are must haves in your deck if you go pure mill control. Do not bother worrying about Grim Tutor unless you want to shell out the 200-300 for it.. I mean it's worth it.. but not really.. this is like.. ooh man.. I could use another tutor... and my deck is at that point.. where like I can only improve what I already have... fuck it yolo 200 bucks dropped. SO WORTH continue to circle jerk with yourself only.
The next cards are similar to tutors, but not as impacting, or just slightly more mana and literally don't hold tutor in their name. These are also a must though.. as remember when you want to run the mill on some people.. you need quick board position, and answers ready and in the hand, or easy searched into your hand. To name a few they are:
that's it really as far as that goes. You could if you wanted to.. spend big money... get Imperial Seal Lol but umm.. this is a budget deck.. so yeah.. and I wouldn't bother with it either. Unless you start playing legacy, because EDH is supposed to be fun yet competitive.. not break the bank, and win at all costs... aka vintage/legacy.
Now here comes the counters as these are a staple in control dimir decks... now you can go a few ways with this... but I mean really... do you need EVERY SINGLE EXPENSIVE COUNTER? The answer is no.. you don't. Just get efficient spell ones, and maybe a Stifle . So without further delay here they are:
1.) Cryptic Command 2.) Counterlash *yes it's 6 mana.. but look at it this way... you are already going to counter a spell.. you now can play anything for 4+ mana that you want of that same card type and on their turn.. which means you untap mana on your upkeep and you are already ahead of the cost of it. If it's 5 or more.. fucking golden. 6 broke even.. and again on their turn.. so you get it without summoning sickness... and you untap lands. Say you get out an Eldrazi, or Omniscience ... for 6 mana... on turn 4-6.. .that's FUCKING HUGE BOARD ADVANTAGE. It's a severely underrated card, IMO it's EDH gold.3.) Swan Song ... do you really care to give them a shitter 2/2 flier? Nah I didn't think so. It's a 1 drop counter.. worth, for those fucks who are degenerate as all hell when they combo out on turn 3-4.4.) Spell Crumple This is one of the greats... it's a must in all 5.)Psychic Strike Since we are playing a Dimir Mill deck.. it's a good choice to have. Gives you a little oomph to 3 mana counters.6.) Counterspell ... it's a fucking bread and butter counter... if you don't have it... then dismantle your deck.. seriously7.) Cancel is another staple of counters, can can be played on turn 2-3 if done right. Incase you are wondering how you do it on turn 2... it's easy numerous ways to do it. The dumbest and simplest method is... turn 1 island, into Sol ring. Turn 2 Island... G...G...8.) Negate ... is ok, not bad, it's similar to cancel, but xxU and can only counter non-creatures. What evs. not bad, I'd rather pay this than hardcast force of will LOL9.) Force of Will ... need no explanation, but it's expensive and not necessary.10.) Mana Drain same as Force of Will... tbh though.. Mana Drain > force of will in edh. Mana ramp is hot shit.
Now something in here as well you can do.. it's not a counter.. but it is.. it's a creature.. but she's great for countering though and her name is Glen Elendra Archmage . This honestly should be in your deck, the fact it's not is because you probably don't know about her.. but now that you do.. You will put in your deck force trick.
Some other cards you need in here though.. for real.. Sensei's Divining Top , that should be in literally any and all EDH... well.. except like an enchantress deck or some shit like that, where it needs specific cards to fill certain requirements.
KK NOW FOR THE LANDS!!! First off... 2 things..idc if you have to sell your other decks... GET FUCKING Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth + Cabal Coffers ... now ramp ramp ramp ramp ramp the fuck out of god damn everything and mill mill mill mill the fuck out of everything. Also you will need a bit more basic land swamps in your deck, and get rid of this shit right here Coral Atoll .. wtf is that? It's not even a double tap land.... and at least Azorius can come in at 2nd main phase after you tapped a mana so you aren't wasting mana. Also dude, you really don't need 41 lands o.o 36 is fine.. especially after you put in cabal and yawgmoth. That will leave you more room for more shit in your deck. You can go 38 if you feel unsafe.. then take away more lands as you need.
Also.. WHERE THE HELL IS YOUR Reliquary Tower ?! Get rid of Everglades.... again.. useless. If it was 2 colored mana.. fine. It's a colorless and swamp... not useful. You should also have more mana ramp in here.. you can put in Everflowing Chalice , Astral Cornucopia , Mana Vault . You could maybe put a Contagion Engine in here to proliferate some of your artifacts. That would help as well, maybe a Gilded Lotus
The other lands are okish, or fine. So what ev not gonna beat on a dead horse, you understand hopefully your lands are in disarray, and need help.
KK now with telling you what's useless as follows:
1.) Belltower Sphinx 2.) Chancellor of the Spires (to slow, and you only have a 1/99 chance of it being in opening hand, unless you want to mulligan, then it's higher, but every mulligan after.. not worth, and also harder to pull off.) This isn't standard... so it's not worth.. where you can stick 4 of these in your deck.. and have a good chance of 1 maybe 2.3.) Geralf's Mindcrusher Not worth, too slow, and only 10 cards max (when dead comes back)... there's other cards in this deck you'd rather see. 4.) Hedron Crab If it was all players it'd be fine.. but it's target player.. so it's slow.. and only thing you will do is piss some one off.. and make yourself a target. Just not worth.. it's crap.. if standard sure.. but this is edh.5.) Jace's Mindseeker Better cards available out there, and let you search whole deck.. for what ever you want.. not worth... if it was all players.. sure, def worth. You see the pattern here? 6.) Jace's Phantasm Garbage in edh.7.) + ... Not a fan of either.. but if I had to choose.. Nighthowler does stuff.... not just a big dumb creature. Either way.. both are bad in Dimir Control Mill.8.) Szadek, Lord of Secrets He's not your general.. don't run him.9.) Riddlekeeper Better cards to play10.) Sewer Nemesis Again better cards to play.11.) Patron of the Nezumi Not effecient at all to play, and it's to expensive for other cards that can do similar things.12.) Memory Erosion To slow and it only mills.. that's it.. not justifiable. 13.) Sword of Body and Mind It's control Dimir so not needed... you barely run creatures.14.) Brain Freeze You are not a combo deck.. and you won't be playing massive spells enough to do this.. so don't bother, it's wasted space.15.) Thought Scour Garbage.... plain and simple..16.) Memory Sluice There's better...17.) Paranoid Delusions Running Dimir Control EDH, not Dimir control EDH.. also single target... and only mills 2... if it doesn't mill a shit ton out of 1 persons deck.. don't play it. 18.) Sanity Grinding Requires to much to play around.... and you would need lim-dul's vault as well with this.. BUT YOU DO NEED Lim-Dul's Vault AS WELL IN THIS DECK! Just don't play sanity grinding, not worth... you might get unlucky as hell with it. There's a better card to play if you need to mill through your deck to get to better shit.19.) Propaganda is just bad in this deck.. you aren't stacking effects.. so it's not worth.
KK there's the cards I was like.. wow why? No insult, just I play a lot of U/B U/B/W and or Mono B. Also that guy said Jace Beleren is bad.. it's not.. just get Notion Thief , Just as good, and with contagion engine, you can get off his 10 pretty quick, and also you get their card draw with his +2. We all know card advantage is one of key ways to win the game!
I'll get back to you later on more shit you can add for control and then I'll go into Dimir Creatures mill later, and what you should be playing. Though either way, in creature or control, you still run a lot of what I said lol.
OOH RQ... get Crypt Ghast and Magus of the Coffers to combo with cabal and yawgmoth's. Caged Sun Also works well, and should be played if you do. Your mana is gonna be over 9000 and you will just make them turn their decks over. You can also do + to do an infinite fuck you mill your whole deck degenerate combo.