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|Battle for Zendikar (BFZ)||Rare|
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Creature — Angel
Landfall — Whenever a land enters the battlefield under your control, you may return target nonland permanent card from your graveyard to your hand. If that land is a Plains, you may return that nonland permanent card to the battlefield instead.
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Emeria Shepherd Discussion
1 week ago
Nice brew, neat idea to counter those clunky and annoying Vannifars!
As smne who played Mono-W Stax for a while, with the amazing Hokori, Dust Drinker at the helm, I'll share with you what thoughts inspire me your sweet Linvala decklist.
(Even if it has already been pointed out before, I wanna say that I also love the Urborg combo. It's unexpectable and freakin' gud!)
Let's start by the beginning: mana fixation. Extraplanar Lens is insane in every monocolored archetype, so it's a quite logic inclusion you made here. Nonetheless, I suggest you to go for Snow-covered lands to synergize better with it - that way you won't give a lift to your opponents playing white.
Pearl Medallion and Sol Ring are basics, nothing really worth to say about it. Thran Dynamo and Worn Powerstone are more debatable. I don't know what is your budget issue, but if you want a competitve list, Mana Crypt , Mana Vault , Grim Monolith , Mind Stone , Everflowing Chalice etc. are all better options. Dynamo and Powerstone aren't bad cards, but they just come after those ones if you really do need a solid ''ramp'' package.
Opal Palace feels badly slow and ineffective in a monocolored stax deck. You won't win the game by taking up the board with your creatures armed of a little +1/+1 counter.
You have notable exclusions in your lands for a mono-white. Eiganjo Castle is the first card that comes through mind. Buried Ruin also is a recursive tool you should consider, even over Inventors' Fair . If you manage to find one, Ancient Tomb has its place there replacing Temple of the False God .
At its final shape, my Hokori decklist was running a powerful Crucible of Worlds package including Wasteland , Strip Mine , Dust Bowl , Flagstones of Trokair , Lotus Vale and City of Traitors . I was up to 39 lands, not counting Maze of Ith .
Now let's jump straight into your gameplan!
So... you're planning to focus your eyes on ruining Vannifar's day. To help with this strategy of being the nasty ''combo killer'' guy, I think you should put in some additional pieces of disruption.
That said, I don't know which Vannifar's version(s) your playgroup perform with. If it's a Thornbite Staff / Intruder Alarm one, things would be easier to calm down and you won't need such a heavy stax package - you'll need more single-target/multi-target removals though. And if it's the other one, certainly the most popular now (and also the most powerful/absurd), based on many shenanigans around the creatures Vannifar brings to the table, you'll need more stax support.
One of the very best cards you could add to stop all those creature-centered combos is Humility . This card is broken, this card is stupid. It even disables etb abilities. The only way your opponent has to go through is to destroy it with a creatureless source / or with a ''casting'' effect (like Ulamog has).
Single-handly, Humility tears apart most of the competitive Vannifar lists. However, based on the fact that it is still fragile to enchantments/permanents removals, you'll have to build a defensive shield for your stuff. Vannifar lists often keep a strong package of cheap permanents' removals in their pocket (like Beast Within for example), so you'll need to play carefully.
There's a lot of different ways you can head in order to reinforce your permanents' presence on the battlefield. A pretty simple and most of the time effective, despite of its ccm, you already included is Avacyn, Angel of Hope . I think you still lack a way to cheat her casting cost out to make her a stable and destructive power house.
Stax ''enchantment'' strategy is imo one of the most viable and solid strategy. With Academy Rector (amazing alongside your High Market ), you'll be able to search the exact piece you need to lock the game in your favor.
Notable stax exclusions :
Static Orb > staple
Storage Matrix > staple
Arena of the Ancients > staple
Thalia, Heretic Cathar > staple
Lodestone Golem > Considering all the artifacts you're playing, ~ seems like a consistent pick for your draft.
Ethersworn Canonist > personal preference there. I always loved ~ in my stax deck. Synergizes well with Teshar.
Phyrexian Revoker > another personal preference. Always found ~ useful.
Pithing Needle > destroys Vannifar for 1 mana.
Orb of Dreams > more of an Hokori all stars card, but could also be good here.
Sphere of Resistance > staple, should be played carefully to slow down your opponents combos and not threw away as soon as possible like I see many people casting it
Mana Tithe > unexpected white counterspell - another Hokori all stars... I don't know if it would be any good there
Other cards to consider :
Platinum Angel > slow down combos, create a premium target for every combo player removals.
Greater Auramancy > protection for your enchantments
Sensei's Divining Top > not the best card draw you could find, but provides something White struggles to accomplish
Barl's Cage > strong mana sink against Vannifar and creature-heavy decks
Condemn > more removals
Abolish > more removals
Dispatch > more removals
Catastrophe > clears everything except enchantments/artifacts
Approach of the Second Sun > win con
Idyllic Tutor > searching for Humility
A bunch of meta depending stax tools :
Cards I'd cut from your list :
Martyr's Bond > Slow and unreliable on this brew. As you're not sacrificing any kind of permanent on your own, you'll struggle to get any value out of it outside of a lost political blast deflagrating when the game should already be over. Unless you add in some cards like World Queller , it defenitly doesn't deserve a slot imo.
Bishop of Rebirth > a lot of people seems to give love to this card recently. However, I personally think it is just a bad inclusion. You spend 5 mana on a understated body and you have to wait a whole turn before getting value out of it IF you are in the researched scenario. There will be times where you have Boots or Greaves on board and this will be an insane mini-Sun Titan, but the situation is too rare to justify its presence.
Sublime Archangel > No real interest here. Good creature but doesn't provide anything for the stax strategy.
Gift of Immortality / True Conviction > weird ''win con'' heavily situational cards based on creatures. There is some logic behind Gift, but it's just too much of a unreliable idea. True Conviction has nothing to do here... it's 6 mana spend to lose the control on the game. If you're searching for card advantage and a bit of healing, go for the brand new Dawn of Hope (also is a good mana sink).
Blackblade Reforged > intersting alternative win con. Feels slow nonetheless.
Emeria Shepherd > too slow for my liking.
Whispersilk Cloak > can't understand what this does in a deck full of flyiers and tapping effects.
Finally, as you want to challenge Vannifar, which is a blue deck, you'll need something to deal with the classical Cyclonic Rift . Teferi's Protection is a good solution (and it could also protects you form a lot of various situations / removals / etc.), but I'm sure you can find a lot of other response.
I hope you'll find useful ideas in this comment. Thanks a lot for sharing this, it reminds me good times. Keep up the good work, keep up brewing!
2 weeks ago
Nice deck! You should definitely include Mask of Memory as it would probably be the second best card in your deck behind Sunforger . I run it in my Aurelia-Angel-tribal-reanimator list and the card is often my MVP.
Also, Boros just got a HUGE boost to its ability to ramp with Smothering Tithe . I have only got to use it once so far, but the card greatly over performed (wheel effects + Smothering Tithe is just gross). Burnished Hart is another great ramp option that fills a similar role to Solemn Simulacrum . You aren't excited to play it, but the ramp it provides is pretty crucial.
Another card that is sneakily good in Boros is Emeria Shepherd . If it can stick, the value you get is pretty great.
This last suggestion is more meta dependent, but I have been pretty impressed with Conqueror's Flail in my Boros list. It grants you much more peace-of-mind during your turn.
3 weeks ago
Hello I certainly don't mind giving some suggestions, I do see that you have received some excellent feedback already, but I will try to add what I can to this.
I figure this deck you're wanting to keep on the budget side am I correct in assuming? Regardless, I can see some areas where you can make significant improvement without spending too much $. The mana base is what i'm talking about here, I think you have a fine land count but what you can do is include some non-basics. Here are some to consider: Command Tower , Secluded Steppe , Orzhov Basilica , Temple of the False God , Myriad Landscape , Vault of the Archangel , Isolated Chapel , Temple of Silence , High Market , and Bojuka Bog . Of course there's others beyond this if you want to spend more like Cabal Coffers , Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth , Godless Shrine , Marsh Flats , etc but these are obviously more expensive.
But yeah, your commander is a bit on the costly side, and you could do with some more ramp here. For one thing, with so many basic lands here I think you should consider adding Land Tax .
Then, some other individual cards that I think would help here would be the following: Athreos, God of Passage (Was my first deck originally and is such a useful card here especially when paired with Teysa Karlov ), Emeria Shepherd , Bitterblossom , and Priest of Forgotten Gods .
I wish I could offer more but I must get back to studying. Whenever I can, I will try to suggest some cuts that you can make possibly for some of these suggestions. The lands should be an easy part however to decide. Well I hope that some of this is of use to you for now.
3 weeks ago
Hello friend. I really like your deck. I do have some suggestions. Because this commander is really expensive, i recommend you include as many indestuctible effects as possible. I recommend Darksteel Plate Hammer of Nazahn and Shield of Kaldra as well as Gift of Immortality . I think you're also missing some key sacrfifice effects in black. I recommend Butcher of Malakir and Dictate of Erebos . i see you are already running Grave Pact which is good. i also recommend Phyrexian Delver and Emeria Shepherd for reanimation.
3 weeks ago
3 weeks ago
I don't know how your theme is going to restrict your deck building but I can give you some insight on how Kaalia decks tend to function.
Kaalia has to hit the field with haste or your opponents will often have enough time to deal with her. Anger , Fervor , Ashling's Prerogative , etc. help you get the value of swinging with her or a fatty without it being removed immediately. Grand Abolisher is also fantastic at preventing interaction entirely.
Kaalia is plan A, but you will need a plan B and C incase your opponents prevent Kaalia from hitting the table. Finding other ways to cheat fat creatures into play should be a focus. Sneak Attack , Reanimate , Animate Dead , Necromancy , Strands of Night are all good options. If going the reanimation route be sure to include Buried Alive and Entomb to set up those plays.
Big mana Mardu decks are fairly bad at drawing many cards so I suggest adding in Phyrexian Arena and Necropotence to keep your hand topped up. Or be like me and abandon card draw entirely by letting no one have a hand; Sire Of Insanity and Mindslicer make sure everyone is hellbent. Kaalia can become very difficult to remove when no one has cards in hand.
Also Emeria Shepherd is a super strong angel and is worth an include.
4 weeks ago
Thanks for the suggestions! So to explain how I built the deck: I first started by trying to find a way to generate card advantage and draw in white.
White is good at drawing lands so I put all the relevant ones with ways to abuse it.
Then mana doubling effects with Eight-and-a-Half-Tails to protect them since they generate a lot of hate.
Afterwards some kill conditions where big numbers of tokens felt best.
Now I needed some crowd control with wraths and spot removal.
At that point I looked at trying to include pillow fort cards and ways to slow down the game but the deck was already too full. I like your suggestions but I don't know what to cut and still keep the original idea in there.
4 weeks ago
Well that's kind of the point nickelphoenix, I want things to die. For example last game I used Demon of Dark Schemes to kill some tokens while I had a Dictate of Erebos out. This made it so one of my opponents had to sacrifice a token from Dark Depths .
Thanks for your thoughts!
Emeria Shepherd occurrence in decks from the last year
Commander / EDH:
All decks: 0.06%
GW (Selesnya): 0.35%
RW (Boros): 0.17%
W/U/B (Esper): 0.05%