Dimir House Guard
Creature — Skeleton
Sacrifice a creature: Regenerate Dimir House Guard.
Transmute (1)(Black)(Black) ((1)(Black)(Black), Discard this card: Search your library for a card with the same converted mana cost as this card, reveal it, and put it into your hand. Then shuffle your library. Play only as a sorcery.)
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Dimir House Guard Discussion
2 days ago
I like the addition of Viscera Seer in place of 1xDimir House Guard. Not only is it a sac outlet, but setting up draws is important if you're not all in on the combo. It'll make the grindy games more winnable I think.
5 days ago
I agree. Add in No Mercy.
If you are playing Maralen of the Mornsong, along with the necessary Stranglehold to keep it one sided, you have no issue with tutors and combo. You should go all the way with this and play Vampiric Tutor, Enlightened Tutor, and Idyllic Tutor. Maybe add in some Transmute cards for extra tutoring, since these are often budget friendly tutor effects. Brainspoil gets you Starfield of Nyx, Sphere of Safety, Norn's Annex, Kazuul, Tyrant of the Cliffs (why aren't you running this?), and Master of Cruelties. Dimir House Guard gets you a ton of stuff, most importantly including Stranglehold, but could also get Opalescence. Dimir Machinations gets you any number of cards, most importantly including Maralen of the Mornsong, Price of Glory, and Solitary Confinement. Both Shred Memory and Netherborn Phalanx could potentially tutor up some good stuff. Add in some Group Slug enchantments for continuous pings, or some combo kill, and you have a lockout recipe. Any of the Gods in would also make nice wincons that are tutorable with any of the above tutors. If you are going strong on enchantments, both Opalescence and Starfield of Nyx turn out to be good wincons all by themselves. If you have that many enchantments, Replenish provides protection against an enchantment board wipe.
I like all the Freeze elements, it makes this into a scary Stax style taxation deck. If you are going that direction, why not add in the three best Stax pieces, Parallax Wave, Smokestack, and Tangle Wire? Lethal Vapors, Parallax Wave, and Starfield of Nyx would create a recurring board wipe for creatures, and even as a one shot, both Tangle Wire and Parallax Wave would fit in here nicely.
I also suggest thinking about lowering your curve. The cards in your list that are the highest CMC are actually not adding much to your major strategy. Trim them to make room for more efficient pieces, more tutors, and more cards that exploit the Stax/Tax theme. Also, you should think about running more ramp in the form of mana rocks. My experience is that both Stax and Pillow Fort want a curve with an average CMC somewhere around 2.5, and these archetypes also want a lot of mana rocks to power out early defensive plays. You only run two ramp cards, and your average CMC is 3.65, with a curve that tops out at 9! You will probably be waiting until turn 15 or so to get out Avacyn, Angel of Hope or Blazing Archon. Waiting that long for your defense means that it is unlikely to be doing anything for you.
Anyway, this is a very interesting deck, and a very different take on Queen Marchesa than most. I will be watching you develop it with great interest.
1 week ago
warbird I think Dimir House Guard is pretty good, but I kinda like cards that are marginally better outside of Transmute, but more tutors is always better in any deck haha. I'll consider adding it into the deck.
Will make the swap for Rhystic Study if/when I get one.
Thanks for the suggestions and upvote!
1 week ago
Dimir House Guard is something else that can help you tutor specifically for Gemstone Array. Swap out Mystic Remora for Rhystic Study when you can as well. Would no max hand size cards like Reliquary Tower be useful in this deck?
3 weeks ago
I've had this list kicking around a while Mono black deckbuilder's toolbox- glad to see someone is putting together a primer.
Heartless Summoning enables higher CMC play- especially with a full set of kalitas.
Devour Flesh is a decent sideboard card against burn when running creature aggro, and a good non-lifelink lifegain source.
Diregraf Colossus is a notable zombie card and decent beastick,
Everlasting Torment helps fight through lifegain and thrun.
Mimic Vat plays merry hell with regular tron, and has the added bonus of interacting with an opponents graveyard using a replacement effect- handy for those Kitchen Finks. Nantuko Husk sees fringe play in zombie builds.
Fulminator Mage is a three drop.
Memory Plunder is an insane answer to snapcaster/cryptic, and solid against anything that casts big spells (reversing a living end combo).
Panharmonicon deserves a mention for more midrange black, enabling some insane play on decks that survive casting it.
You should probably seperate out the x cost cards- Killing Wave/Damnable Pact/Profane Command aren't really meant to be cast for low values of x, and people looking for that slot are likely to miss them.
White splash is strong in vampire/control builds for access to Blood Baron of Vizkopa, Tithe Drinker, Sorin, Lord of Innistrad,Sorin, Solemn Visitor and the ubiquitus removal suite. Green also gives important access to Collected Company(where Temporal Extortion isn't good enough) and Lotleth Troll, a mainstay for gravecrawler shenanigans and etb stuff.
Anything else I can think of would be specific cards for specific decks. One thing that always shocks my opponents is the sheer versatility you can pack into a black fifteen card sideboard- something transformative to handle bad matchups (graveyard and tron) really does change the shape of your evening, although decklist knowledge will allow players to play around this when the decklists are available, at any other time you can absolutely change the shape of your game. 'side 15' is a real thing.
1 month ago
Absolutely fantastic deck Cougz! Honestly, you should have kept it private, tested and tweaked and brought it to a tournament. The fact that it is monoblack makes it all the more fantastic. I've made a copy - I liked it that much - and have been tweaking and playing around with it. A few things strike me as clunky for competitive modern:
Abyssal Persecutor: I agree that it is quite the beater; a 5/5 in the air for BB is nasty (I am assuming that the reduced cost is the most common scenario Abyssal Persecutor will be played as a turn 4 flying 6/6 is not that special in modern when most decks can simply win by that point). You get your opponent down to 0 life and sac it, and you win. However, you already have massive beaters in the form of Eater of Days, Hunted Horror, and Leveler. There is an argument to be made that you don't need Torpor Orb or Sundial of the Infinite for Abyssal Persecutor and so you break from being combo dependent but relying on transference of the creature to prevent your opponent from winning is effectively playing defense. This deck is designed to control turns 1-3 (through hand control with Inquisition of Kozilek and/or Thoughtseize) and win on turn 4. (Sundial of the Infinite, Heartless Summoning, and Sac outlet into Eater of Days or Leveler into Endless Whispers on turn 4 with the hope of sac'ing your game winner the turn Endless Whispers comes into play). You have even more control by killing any threat they can throw at you with your big creatures playable as early as turn 2 with Hunted Horror (although then they get the Centaurs) or turn 3 with anything else (including a torpor'ed or sundial'ed horror). The majority of your damage is non-trample thus for all your big baddies, the opponent can just throw up weenie blocks while they set up their own win condition mitigating the awesome power/toughness that the deck wields so early. In other words, you're not trying to aggro them with this deck; you'd need some form of acceleration to get your Hunted Horror or heartless summoned other baddie out on turn 2 to really be aggro for which you'd need green or Gemstone Caverns. If you want aggro, you have to go more 2 and 3 drops that can be played after heartless summoning as 0 or 1 drops. There is something to be said for this approach because so many at the 4 drop slot make you dependent on Heartless Summoning instead of just synergistic. But if you build more of a control shell, I think the current number of 4 drops is reasonable. If it were up to me I'd say go with Inverter of Truth instead of Abyssal Persecutor as your 6/6 flyer (presumably 5/5 with Heartless Summoning) which has much greater synergy with Torpor Orb/Sundial of the Infinite and Endless Whispers - i.e. its another win condition. Given that your monoblack, you can throw in Bojuka Bog for some of the Swamps to hopefully turn your Inverter of Truth effectively into a Leveler.
Dimir House Guard and Krark-Clan Ironworks - I think these are too clunky. Even with Dimir House Guard doubling as a tutor for your win condition and Krark-Clan Ironworks generating mana (perhaps for a backup Torpor Orb or Sundial of the Infinite), I still worry they are too slow. I've been trying to figure out how better to optimize the sacrifice component of the deck. I've been going back to 4 cards: Life's Legacy, Tormented Thoughts, Ayli, Eternal Pilgrim, and Bound by Moonsilver. In this deck, Life's Legacy is effectively a draw 7 or somewhere there abouts. That's arguably better than Ancestral Recall so long as you can take advantage of the additional hand the turn you cast Life's Legacy which, at only you should be able to. Tormented Thoughts is effectively target opponent discards his or her hand. This may be a more powerful effect than Life's Legacy, especially against a control deck. It also more assuredly guarantees your win by forcing your opponent into top-decking. I like Ayli, Eternal Pilgrim because she'll survive a Heartless Summoning's -1/-1, her deathtouch makes her still relevant as a 1/2, and against non-damaging decks, you'll quickly get to 30+ life which makes her ability relevant. Bound by Moonsilver effectively turns into a reusable Pacifism. Of course all of these except for Tormented Thoughts introduce another color into the deck. The fact that these are turn 3/4/5 plays means that splashing is much easier - and in modern splashing is simple - albeit expensive. It does open you up to bloodmoon and other forms of land hosing which was a former strength of the deck although that form of control doesn't seem to currently be prominent in the meta top 8. I haven't playtested these yet, but given the sac is a late game play, I'd lean heaviest towards Tormented Thoughts. With all that said, none of these options synergize with Heartless Summoning. Ideally, we could figure out a creature version of a sac outlet to benefit from Heartless Summoning's acceleration. The best thing I could come up with was Scourge of Skola Vale. With Heartless Summoning it costs , it survives the -1/-1 coming into play with two +1/+1 counters, and you get to effectively transfer the P/T of the sac'ed creature (which is already an incredible rate) albeit not to block the fatty you just gave them with Endless Whispers as the Scourge of Skola Vale will be tapped. The issue with Scourge of Skola Vale is that I fear it is a win more condition, at least with Endless Whispers on the battlefield. If they are getting your Eater of Days, Inverter of Truth, or any of the others, you should just be winning the game, regardless. That's why I like Tormented Thoughts as insurance.
Torpor Orb and Sundial of the Infinite: your deck revolves around these effects. I think they are a mandatory 4 each of. On review, I think the Sundial of the Infinite may actually be the better card for the deck as you don't need to sacrifice it once you have Endless Whispers. Of course, the Torpor Orb hoses so many modern decks that rely on ETB effects, that they are both fantastic additions. But you absolutely need one of these in play for your deck to work. The deck's primary weakness then is the loss of either or both in play. Looking at the meta, as artifacts and with such big creatures, your deck will trump Lightning Bolts. HOwever, Terminates and especially Path to Exiles will ruin your day and a well-timed Abrupt Decay will end the game for you. Jund and Junk are probably your most dangerous matchups. Your early hand control with Inquisition of Kozilek and Thoughtseize can hopefully protect you against Tron, Scapeshift, Living End, and other combos. Thus you either need backups in play or some form of instant-speed protection. This could mean adding blue for counter effects. But the streamlined mono-black is not something I'd quickly give up. I don't have a great suggestion here. You have the benefit of knowing their hand with your Inquisition of Kozilek/Thoughtseize type effects... Wish I could offer more here.
Finally - and these were just other ideas I was tossing around - your deck shell might accommodate morph/manifest and/or exploit mechanics. The morph is nice because you effectively cheat in ETB-like effects (flip-up effects) while maintaining Torpor Orb and manifest offers an alternative mechanism to get these win-condition creatures into play without having to suffer ETB effects. In fact, if you manifest any of your win-condition creatures with an Endless Whispers already on the battlefield, you never even need flip the creature; just sacrifice and transfer the face-up to the opponent. For those players only familiar with the meta, this will be one heck of a nasty surprise. Keep in mind that Heartless Summoning while no longer offering benefit to the flipped creature's CMC, still affords cheaper morph costs. I bring up morph and not just manifest because you'd want to take advantage of the fact that your opponent won't know what the face down creature is and there are cards (like Grim Haruspex)) that have very inexpensive flip costs. Exploit will be trumped by torpor orb but offers an alternative sacrifice mechanism which, presumably, would be occurring after you sac the Torpor Orb anyway as you want the opponent to suffer the ETB effects. One thing I was thinking about was the combo decks out there. Then again, adding in these effects may be trying to do too much. You might simply want one Jeskai Infiltrator or one Whisperwood Elemental or, heck, one Mastery of the Unseen. Qarsi High Priest would allow you to stay in color... I look forward to yours and the community's response.
2 months ago
Sygg, River Cutthroat Deserves a place in the deck because of all of the unblockable.
Thassa, God of the Sea also deserves a place in the deck because of all of the blue symbols that would be in play.
Changes I would consider:
2 months ago
Triskaidekaphobia could potentially simplify the concept and vary the win-con. Since the combo is mono-black, it would allow you to drop red and blue and use green instead to ramp, which would make it faster. you could tutor for both with Dimir House Guard and even tun Tree of Redemption and Assault Formation.
I think Turn to Frog will not work on the Tree because Turn says, "...loses all abilities..."
I think I'd run more Dreadbore in the sideboard and drop Inquisition. My reasoning here is that 1) 2 life can hurt. 2) dreadbore is good when opponents are top-decked. Inquisition is anticipatory, dreadbore is reactionary. If the anticipatory doesn't happen soon enough, it's no good, but the reactionary can take time to deliberate and chose the right time to maximum effect.