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Dark Ritual Discussion
1 day ago
Oh good call, Silent Arbiter would be great. Do you think it's worth running Dark Ritual or Cabal Ritual in this kind of deck? I'm thinking about cutting those for some more defense or maybe card advantage.
4 days ago
To start, try to drop Dark Ritual for an effect like Thoughtseize or Inquisition of Kozilek , fit in card advantage like Dark Confidant so you can beat your opponents on combo. Run less aggro creatures, or switch to a list using a Smallpox / Pox strategy.
I'd move away from mono-black vampires, to get into green so you can play a nic-fit list or jund list in style. Looking up "Nic-Fit" or "Jund Midrange" can show you how these midrange decks work.
1 week ago
Unfortunately haven't been able to play much this past couple weeks outside of my budget commander league (under $50).
Turn 5 seems about right, here's some of the goldfishing stats:
05/02/17 | Avg. Turn 5.7
10/03/17 | Avg. Turn 5.0
01/25/19 | Avg. Turn 5.7 | Combo 40% | Synergy 20% | Damage 40%
02/01/19 | Avg. Turn 5.0 | Combo 50% | Synergy 20% | Damage 30%
Turn 1 is definitely not as frequent as I would like, but the cards to make Turn 1 more consistent make T2-5 less consistent in most cases. Dark Ritual is one that's pretty good all purpose and a T1 enabler if you want to improve your average.
Any lifelink can swing for the fences, except Serra Ascendant he's not that effective because he loses the +5 but still doesn't matter because he lifelinks.
I picked up a Hatred last weekend, going to try it and will let you know. I really dislike it's CMC5, feels too slow.
Felidar Guardian is just another Restoration Angel and putting in Altar of the Brood just for one particular interaction (no other benefits), isn't a good process. I would just tutor the Restoration Angel + Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker . Altar of the Brood could replace the Goblin Bombardment if you wanted to test this interaction, works the same way basically.
Combat Celebrant I feel has ok synergy with Kaalia of the Vast , but I usually don't have that many A/D/D to drop in anyway. Wouldn't tutor him over the primary either. Why I like him is the CMC3. Worldgorger Dragon is another possibility for win-con, but takes some balls and a Piranha Marsh (Or Altar of the Brood !)
2 weeks ago
Bonus Round lines are pretty much the same! Just need to start with mana to cast Bonus Round + Tutor + Ritual that you tutor for. So, easiest to start with Bonus Round + Demonic Tutor into Dark Ritual .
2 weeks ago
No worries. Glad we can be friends (:
Here are my thoughts: Phyrexian Arena is a permanent (unlike one-time spells such as Read the Bones ). This means it generates more and more value the longer it's around. Unlike Greed , it has no extra costs. Unlike Dark Confidant , it is an enchantment which makes it a lot harder to get rid of. Unlike Dark Tutelage , it only pings you for 1 per draw in a format where high CMC cards and long games are commonplace. The fact that it's slow and steady means that you get to USE all the cards that you draw off it. Necropotence and Ad Nauseam are great for drawing 20 cards at once, but if you already had 4 cards in your hand, then you're only getting to keep 3 of the cards you drew. At that point, why not just tutor for those exact cards you need? Also, with Necropotence , you can't activate it until your end step, which usually means you can't use the cards you drew with it until your next turn anyways. And lets say you kept 3 cards from Necropotence because you already had 4 in hand. You skip your next draw step, so now it's like you only netted 2 cards off of it. Three black mana and 20 life to draw 2 cards? No thanks. It also exiles anything that goes in your graveyard. The longer necropotence is around, the more it becomes a liability. (I know Necropotence is crazy powerful in cEDH combo lists, but as a casual player who prefers longer games, Phyrexian Arena much better suits my needs.)
2 weeks ago
I design for concept. I push envelopes and reach for the impossible. It's what I do. The finished product is not going to be anywhere near my inception point and I'm fine with that. Here's a card I designed back in 1994:
I played this card in a proxy league some 25 years ago. It absolutely warped the meta because I could counter crap like Channel , Dark Ritual , and Black Lotus , not to mention all the broken made-up cards everyone else was using. EVERYBODY wanted it and I was the only one who had it.
Then a year later Force of Will came out. The finished product is vastly different, better IMO. I'm happy I had the concept down.
2 weeks ago
Finding a correlation between card draw and ramp as you put it is not valid. Digging for cards vs squeezing out just one more mana with Dark Ritual for a turn instead of a Sol Ring is not comparable by any means. I don't see what lines you're trying to draw because they are two different realms mechanically speaking and OP is aiming to compare Arena with other card draw engines. What I'm getting at is, 2 cards drawn immediately off of Night's Whisper instead of netting the same result over two extra turn cycles with Arena is much more marginally significant than your Dark Ritual / Sol Ring comparison. AND Sol Ring , although colorless, nets POSITIVE after just one turn cycle after it enters anyway.
2 weeks ago
Dark Ritual is "better" at ramping than Sol Ring , but I prefer sol ring because it's a permanent that generates more and more value the longer it's around. I'll take sol ring over dark ritual all day. Phyrexian Arena works the same way.
Dark Ritual occurrence in decks from the last year
All decks: 1.2%
Commander / EDH:
All decks: 0.08%
U/B/R (Grixis): 0.69%