Dark Tutelage


Format Legality
Pre-release Legal
Noble Legal
Leviathan Legal
Magic Duels Legal
Vintage Legal
Modern Legal
Penny Dreadful Legal
Vanguard Legal
Legacy Legal
Archenemy Legal
Planechase Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Unformat Legal
Casual Legal
Commander / EDH Legal

Printings View all

Set Rarity
2011 Core Set (M11) Rare

Combos Browse all

Dark Tutelage


At the beginning of your upkeep, reveal the top card of your library and put that card into your hand. You lose life equal to its converted mana cost.

Price & Acquistion Set Price Alerts



Have (5) TheAlmostHero , corys , pskinn01 , Ashy , CAPT.Shock
Want (0)

Recent Decks

Dark Tutelage Discussion

Angel_Zero on I am the Senate

2 weeks ago

I would recommend Death or Glory, Diabolic Tutor for the art and flavor, same for Dark Tutelage. maybe these could be fun politics in multiplayer: Intellectual Offering, Benevolent Offering, Infernal Offering. Head Games and Jester's Mask make for great political cards as they can help or hinder. Choice of Damnations could be fun even if it isn't that strong.

PartyJ on Nath of the STAX-Leaf | cEDH | Primer

1 month ago

Hi Shadowz6677, it took me a while to get back onto a decent device to properly answer comments. Now that I obtained my Japanese alter, I am happy to move forward to see where this deck could still be improved. It seems you are enjoying your build too, so we might learn from eachother.

Expedition Map gives me an extra out to find Gaea's Cradle. This land is pretty vital when I want to finish the game using Torment of Hailfire.

Mox Diamond is a good addition. But I do not own one yet. I hope to get my hands on one later this day, when I have some trading options available. Good suggestion.

Hello JoeBlondie, thank you for your comment!

Smokestack was once in the deck, but it is slow. There is no direct impac on the battlefield when you cast it. It takes a full turn to become active, which I felt was sub-optimal for this build.

Possessed Portal is a brutal finisher that usually ends in GG from my table :)

Hello Wiggyman, thanks for visiting my deck and leaving a suggestion. Always appreciated!

The reason I run Dark Tutelage is due to the fact that it gives me cards without drawing them. I have cards in the deck that blocks drawing cards like Possessed Portal and Chains of Mephistopheles. Dark Tutelage bypasses this and still gives me the extra needed cards.

Hope this makes sense :)

Sunbrosoulaire on Draw, Ping, Repeat

1 month ago

goblinguiderevealpls, BabyK, and cdkime thank you guys for all of the much needed help. Due to all of your assistance I think I have made considerable progress as the list has been further stream lined and condensed to 105 cards. So far, I have decided to take out most of the "Pillow fort" cards and attempt to rely on politics, boardwipes, and speed to not lose the game. Furthermore, after looking at goblinguiderevealpls's own list I have decided to run 4 "true" extra turn spells and a copy of Time Stop as a pseudo 5th extra turn spell. I also added 5 tutors for redundancy for each "group" of cards so i can better find board wipes, wheels, wincons, answers, etc... Please, take another look at the list and see what you guys think.

Now I will go over the suggested cards that I didn't include into the list or cards im iffy on and my reasoning as to why I didn't feel they deserved a slot in the deck over other cards. If you guys think my reasoning is wrong, say so and I'll Reconsider the card(s).

Bubbling Muck and High Tide - these cards seem great for late game mana but I prefer running standard mana-rocks to outpace my opponents continuously on mana in the earlier turns to go off more reliably.

Phyrexian Tyranny... at the moment it is in the deck but I am not a fan of it being optional damage and damage that hits both my opponents and myself. It seems ok with another wincon but a sure way to a tie or losing without another one.

Collectively, all the pillowfort cards- again I wanted to see if I could make by on only sweepers and speed.

Notion Thief- I am unsure if I am missing something...or what exactly as he seems to single-handedly undermine half of my win cons?

Dark Tutelage, this seems like a very bad idea as it will significantly help my opponent kill me and im just not a fan of him at all... Phyrexian Arena I understand this card...doesn't make sense to me.

Consecrated Sphinx and Rhystic Study -easily insanely good cards but I can't afford them for a while.

Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind, Curiosity, and Helm of the Ghastlord all look great but the problem I have with the 2 of them is that they are auras. They are going to be nuked more often that not before I can use them, at least in my playgroup

shaftdiggity on Divine Decree

1 month ago

Bloodchief Ascension , once turned on, really drains the board.

With your decently low CMC, Dark Tutelage is great for card draw, and if you're focusing on life gain, the loss doesn't hurt as much.

Deadly Tempest might be a good wrath to add, especially against token decks.

goblinguiderevealpls on Draw, Ping, Repeat

1 month ago

dont use days undoing, it seems good but when it resolves the turn ends and nekusar and any other draw damage is removed from the stack, so it deals no damage feeds your opponents their graveyard and 7 cards and ends your turn, also i find incendiary command and collective defiance to be not very strong draw effects as well

stuff like ebony owl, kederekt parasite, ivory tower, and chasm skulker are too narrow amd situational in my opinion, they dont always do what you want and when they do its meh, price of knowledge and vensers journal are also kinda meh for such a high cost in mana

as far as what to replace, Library of Leng is a great card for nekusar training "wheels", so to speak ;) it lets you pitch the cards you dont want or need and draw/wheel into the cards in your hand you do need

Bloodchief Ascension does what sangromancer does, but better and harder to stop, it also infinite combos with Mindcrank along with Duskmantle Guildmage

spells that draw ONLY you cards are also really effective at getting you enough cards to win, such as Notion Thief, Rhystic Study, Mystic Remora,Consecrated Sphinx, Phyrexian Arena, Dark Tutelage, Keranos, God of Storms are some examples

i would run Phyrexian Tyranny over price of knowledge, if you have spare mana you can avoid the damage and its far cheaper on mana and faster at dealing damage

Bubbling Muck and High Tide are also really strong ramp cards if you run a lot of basic lands

Wiggyman on Nath of the STAX-Leaf | cEDH | Primer

2 months ago

Why Dark Tutelage over Phyrexian Arena? The arena loses you less life and also doesn't reveal the cards you are drawing.

outofnothing0 on Zur's Perfection

2 months ago

@mhegara: I used to run both Phyresis and Battle Mastery but eventually cut them as I found them to be more "win more" cards. Basically a good chunk of the time I used them I had a big enough board position that they really didn't matter. I do like that flavor text though! As far as Mox Diamond goes... if you can't justify the new inflated price tag you're right in the fact that big mana increaser rocks like Mana Vault as mentioned and Grim Monolith would probably work as suitable alternatives provided you are able to pull enough colored mana rocks to cast Zur. Basically you should just playtest them with your list and see how they interact with the cards in your deck.

@wipperwhill123: Thanks! Generally I'm not worried about what other people are playing unless it has a direct impact on my game plan; to that effect I find that preventing things with counterspells to be more effective than black discard as they may have several things that are gonna ruin my day but only have enough mana to do one per turn whereas a counterspell would stop that dead in its tracks. Also Hymn to Tourach is a little color intensive with the double black. If I do decided to throw some discard in in the future Mind Twist and Thoughtseize would indeed be at the top of my considerations. Thanks for the suggestions!

@Demonio_de_Laplace: Dark Confidant is way better than Dark Tutelage because I can get it out a turn earlier for one and also it can do a little damage, block a bomb of a creature or take the fall if a Fleshbag Marauder or Diabolic Edict slip through. It is nice being able to tutor up the Dark Tutelage but it's just not as versatile.

@MtgMaster02: True. Greater Auramancy does do a great deal in protecting Zur but I found that it was overkill with the amount of other things that protect Zur and could sometimes mess up an aura I wanted to cast from hand. It's always in mind though so if I find things aren't going so smoothly anymore I just may put it back in. Thanks for the input!

@Jewishman: I'd say to each their own and that my build would at least stand up fairly decently against it. I personally feel like it takes away the essence of a Zur deck being a toolbox commander, but that's just me.

@Kynelan: I had Ancient Tomb in the deck at one point but found it was too painful when combined with all the other ways that I make myself lose life in the deck.

@1992lucas: The deck needs redundancy in case something gets removed Armageddon and Swiftfoot Boots are just that. I do agree that 3 mana for Disallow is pretty hefty and Misdirection is hit and miss so I am keeping my eye on both of those as potential cuts. The only real target for Idyllic Tutor without Zur is Rest in Peace so that's just too limited. I highly dislike Remand as it gives whatever I deemed threatening enough to counter back to my opponent, Memory Lapse is better as it slows them down a whole turn; the card is negligible. Dig Through Time/Treasure Cruise both cost a ton and I normally don't want to exile anything from my graveyard as I can generally get the important things back, especially with me thinking about the addition of Yawgmoth's Will. Tainted Isle is too situational with the swamp requirement; if I were to swap anything out it'd be for an Adarkar Wastes or Underground River. Thanks for all of the suggestions! I'll definitely think about some of 'em during the next time I have time to do some editing

Spirits on Kaalia - Cheat A/D/D

2 months ago

Hypergeometric Formula. Suppose a population "the deck" consists of N items "99 cards", k "31 lands" of which are successes. And a random sample drawn from that population consists of n items "7 cards", x "2 cards" of which are successes. Then the hypergeometric probability is: h(x; N, n, k) = [ kCx ] [ N-kCn-x ] / [ NCn ]

Best to use the calculator! Hypergeometric Calculator

So 99, 31, 7, 2 reading the X successes >= 2 lands in opening 7 cards, is 70.7% (> because 3 lands is still 2 lands)

By turn 4, you've drawn 4 more cards, so your sample size is 11, but now we want 4 successes (lands). 99, 31, 11, 4, >=4 is 47.1% only!

Don't count mana rocks as lands. A normal commander deck has between 35-38 lands, PLUS 8-10 ramp/rocks/dorks (mana accelerators). I run 36 lands, and 7 mana rocks, Chromatic Lantern, Chrome Mox, Fellwar Stone, Mana Crypt, Orzhov Signet, Sol Ring, Talisman of Indulgence, but I also run heavy tutors to pull what i need. I like it, but for longer non-combo games I would run 8.

Sundial of the Infinite has many other uses in longer non-combo games, only on your turn of course:

Angel of Serenity | Permanently exile the creatures, no returning to their owners hand

Karmic Guide | Avoid his Echo, but costs you a turn so not a good trade off

Kothophed, Soul Hoarder | Prevent him from killing you if you need to cast a board-wipe on your turn

Animate Dead / Necromancy | 95% sure it would stop the sacrifice, assuming it goes on the stack

Sneak Attack | Keep it permanently, no sacrifice

Mimic Vat | Keep the token, no exile

Counterspell | If something happens you don't like, counter it, costs rest of turn but prevent catastrophe, can't get any better protection.

Reconnaissance | If you drop in an A/D/D and get an unfavorable block, protect that A/D/D or Kaalia of the Vast

Counterspell those Grixis and Izzet players from End-of-Turn (EOT) casting draw/removal now that they don't need the mana for Counterspell anymore. Also stop Green from Flash casting in their creatures EOT.


Whip of Erebos | Creatures you control get lifelink, unburial creatures from graveyard, and Sundial of the Infinite to keep the creature, no exile. HOWEVER, when the creature does leave play, it will still be exiled due to the replacement effect also generated by the Whip of Erebos

Zealous Conscripts | Not an A/D/D but steals anything on board for CMC 5, and Sundial of the Infinite to keep the creature permanently

Flameshadow Conjuring | Same idea but you play lots of Legendary so don't recommend

You've got some good stuff to pull with Sunforger.

Boros Charm / Eerie Interlude / Teferi's Protection for Protection

Enlightened Tutor for Tutor

Path to Exile / Swords to Plowshares for creature Exile

Wear for Enchantments or Artifacts (not both), Return to Dust can still get 2 as well

You NEED Anguished Unmaking, Sunforger and remove any permanent!!! Utter End

Mortify good creature / enchantment removal. Dawn Charm white limited Counterspell / Protection for CMC2 it's pretty good, even just to Regenerate.

I personally don't like Chaos Warp but it is ok. Deflecting Palm / Comeuppance / Wild Ricochet too, but meh, give me offense! Wild Ricochet at least prevents then doubles the effect vs. Reverberate doesn't prevent anything, Shunt is ok, but there has to be another legal target, and it doesn't double it. 2 for 1 like Return to Dust is how Mardu beats the lack of good drawing.

Oblation or Orim's Thunder (can still kick) meh, meh.

Dark Tutelage is another Dark Confidant who I do play, BUT, Dark Tutelage is harder to remove if it's going to kill you. Dark Confidant easy to block with or sacrifice etc. In budget though, I'd probably play it lol.

Reveillark another recursive guy, but his CMC is high, and not an A/D/D so not efficient / synergy. Bladewing the Risen is good recursion too. 2 for 1! Reya Dawnbringer no Kaalia of the Vast trigger, but demands an answer. Unanswered he can make you golden.

Angel of Despair good budget removal. Aegis Angel good protection. Archfiend of Depravity if you face go-wide or token decks. Steel Hellkite is a great budget removal, he makes most Kaalia of the Vast competitive decks.

Diabolic Tutor is good, high CMC. Resolute Archangel is a nice reset button in longer term games, but CMC7 is very annoying. But Sneak Attack or Quicksilver Amulet.

Hope that answers the questions presented.

Load more