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Grenzo, Dungeon Warden
Legendary Creature — Goblin Rogue
Grenzo, Dungeon Warden enters the battlefield with X +1/+1 counters on it.
2: Put the bottom card of your library into your graveyard. If it's a creature card with power less than or equal to Grenzo's power, put it onto the battlefield
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Grenzo, Dungeon Warden Discussion
2 days ago
This looks like a really fun deck! Definitely a different take on my main squeeze Alesha, Who Smiles at Death, and I love it! I play her as well if you couldn't tell Alesha, Who is Unfinished. Mine is definitely different from yours, I play this iron maiden in a very control-type fashion, but I really enjoy discussing the finer points of an Alesha deck. I am curious how well the deck performs with such a low mana count, even with your 0 drops, I don't see you having enough.... Alesha is a mana hungry lady in my experience.
I have a few cards that I would suggest for your consideration; Sanctum Gargoyle for that artifact recursion on a stick, Grenzo, Dungeon Warden since you have a nice shiny Crucible of Worlds, maybe Nahiri, the Lithomancer? it feels like a huge mana sink, and Treasure Keeper because well..... Treasure Keeper. I feel like your list is pretty tight, but I also see that Wizards have pissed in your cheerios and banned some solid cards. Don't know how your meta feels about the ban list, but I think these would be some value cards to replace.
1 week ago
Sorry for the double post, but something just flashed in my mind... Do you think a similar list with Grenzo, Dungeon Warden as the commander could work? I mean, it would certainly not be as glass canon as your list currently is, probably not as fast either, but I think it could still compete...
This idea came when I was wondering which commander to pick instead of the Scorpion God. Grenzo still is a good mana sink, because with infinite mana, we could go on and put our entire deck in the yard. Sure, it would be weak to grave hate, but I will not stop brewing only because of this because a lot of decks in the format are weak to grave hate and can still compete.
I think running Grenzo as the commander would lead to some pretty interesting options. The commander would not be as dead as it is with Lyzolda, the Blood Witch. We could cast our commander early on to get value out of activated ability, even if it is simply filling the graveyrad (the ability reminds me of how Thrasios, Triton Hero can be used when we are not comboing off).
Early game, we simply draw, filter and interact (being in B/R is a good place to be for those things), and we can also ramp using some artifact mana (fast rocks, talisman...). Grenzo is helpful at that point. Mid game, I would say this is where we try to combo off, with the Worldgorger Dragon infinite mana combo. This would put our entire deck in the graveyard, allowing us to have all of our creatures and Dread Return, allowing for some reanimation shenanigans and why not a Necrotic Ooze + Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker sort of combo (not sure yet on the combo finish).
The thing is, imagine we get the combo locked, by some exile or anything... Let's say with your current decklist, Worldgorger Dragon gets exiled... What will you do? That is where Grenzo, Dungeon Warden comes in. He can not simply fill your graveyard to prepare combo, he can also give some value by reanimating creatures to disrupt opponents, such as Magus of the Moon, Sire Of Insanity... (depending on the X vaule, that is). Also, since we are already running a reanimation package, it would be easier to fall back on this strategy even with bigger creatures...
I would like to know what you think about this before conbtinuing to brew, because I would really like for Grenzo to be able to compete a little outside of Doomsday!
2 weeks ago
This deck looks pretty good for a first attempt M.O.B.785! One of my first things would be to take out Grenzo, Dungeon Warden. I play Alesha myself and he was in my first draft of this deck. Unless you have a Crucible of Worlds lying around, I feel like Grenzo is lackluster in this list. I frequently found myself putting land cards in the graveyard and I couldn't get them back. Alesha is a surprisingly mana hungry lady. In place of Grenzo, look at Doomed Necromancer he has some fun interaction with Sun Titan, especially if you add in a haste enabler like Anger. Anger is also great to have if you are able to pull off an infinite loop with Priest of the Blood Rite so you can automatically swing with a whole bunch of 5/5 fliers. I'd also suggest putting in Utter End and Anguished Unmaking in place of Mortify and Terminate. I suggest this because having the ability to exile a permanent instead of destroying a creature is a much better option in this format.
I'd be curious about how well the deck is operating currently. Especially all of hand interaction you have.
1 month ago
Thanks for the response UnleashedHavok!
After reading your explanation of Doomed Necromancer I could definitely see it being a powerhouse in your deck. I picture activating it to return Sun Titan which brings your Necromancer back, then activating it again (because Anger is in your graveyard) to return literally anything, then attacking with Sun Titan and bringing him back again. That sounds incredible.
I'll probably evaluate my list to see if I think Feldon is worth it. There are a few changes that are in the works right now, so after that maybe I'll sneak him in.
Good call on Gray Merchant of Asphodel. It's probably a little too cute for my deck outside of combos, but I don't need another infinite damage combo piece. I'd rather have a toolbox of options instead of that redundancy. I've been toying with the idea of a life drain style list with things like Pontiff of Blight, Ayli, Eternal Pilgrim, and Karlov of the Ghost Council. Gary would probably find his way in that list, but not my current one.
I've been thinking about Stingscourger for a while now. My roommate has an Ephara, God of the Polis deck that uses Reflector Mage to great effect and it always has me thinking about the tempo you gain by bouncing someone's general or another key creature. Seems like it'd be worth a shot.
Thalia, Guardian of Thraben seems like it would be better in a list with a more dedicated tax strategy than either of ours. Throw in things like Vryn Wingmare, Leonin Arbiter, and similar guys and you've got yourself a deck. I think that just throwing one or two in the list makes it a little clunky. My list kind of likes the idea though, because I regularly find myself not playing spells at all, but using all of my mana on various abilities. I'll think about it a bit more.
If I had more ways to recur cards (mostly Crucible of Worlds) I would probably run Grenzo, Dungeon Warden. However, as it is I don't want to risk losing something that I can't get back like Cabal Coffers.
1 month ago
You are most welcome Rikente! I really like Alesha, and love talking with other people who play her.
I feel like my list is different from most others I have seen in that I have several big creatures (I also play a ton of control). Enter Doomed Necromancer. I like him because he does not check for power/toughness, so I can cheat in my titans, my Rune-Scarred Demon, or if I really want to be a dick my Sheoldred, Whispering One. And I normally have Anger in the graveyard. So assuming I have the mana for it, I can play him and cheat out a fatty with a big effect same turn.
I actually did not think that Feldon of the Third Path was a good card when I first started playing Alesha. Man has my tune changed! He is an absolute rockstar in this list, especially since I run such an ETB heavy list. I think two of my favorite targets for him are my Rune-Scarred Demon, and Solemn Simulacrum......mmmmhhhhhh value town! With the demon I get a card, swing for 6 flying at their face, and he goes back to the yard just to do it again next turn. And for Solemn, I get a land and a draw in the same turn. Those are just my favorite two examples. Feldon runs amok in this kind of build, he's so powerful.
As for Gray Merchant of Asphodel, he is really just here as a combo piece if I run into someone that is doing those shenanigans. I cannot think of a game I have played where I dropped Gary for a large amount of life loss/gain for the win in one turn. My devotion to black is never that large. You do have a good amount of black creatures, but unless you are wanting to use him as a combo kill, I don't think you would be pleased to see him in your list.
I like Stingscourger. At the beginning of the game, he is a huge nuisance bouncing an opponent's creature back to their hand. He then kindly kills himself so you can keep denying your friends of that creature they want to play, forcing them to use mana they may want for something else. I'm really happy to see him in my opening hand. Then in the late game, you could use him to combo off sending all the opponent creatures back to hands although at that point in the game I would probably be going for the throat.
I actually used to run both Thalia, Guardian of Thraben and Grenzo, Dungeon Warden and wound up swapping them out for other cards. I feel like they are both good cards, but too low impact in a format where; the game draws out so your opponent will have enough mana that paying one more will not really affect them, and you are banking on the bottom card of your library being a creature. I was also running into an issue where Grenzo was putting my removal spells into my yard, I did not like that. They are good, fun cards but I feel that Thalia is better in another format and Grenzo would be better in a different type of deck.
1 month ago
Thank you so much for your feedback UnleashedHavok and for reading through my primer! I'm glad you enjoyed it. I appreciate the link to the Marchesa list, it seems pretty cool. If I ever take my lady Alesha apart (unlikely!) I will probably end up building a similar list to this one.
So with regards to your first question, I make a ton of questionable decisions when I build decks. My meta isn't super competitive so I can usually get away with running a few goofy cards. Squee originally was one of those decisions, but he has put in so much work that now he's one of my favorite cards to see. He makes Alesha unblockable every turn with Key to the City, returns key creatures with Tortured Existence, and provides one-sided advantage with Liliana, Heretical Healer Flip. It's a very innocuous card that provides a ton of value if left unchecked.
Grim Haruspex is another all-star. With Karmic Guide, Reveillark, and a sacrifice outlet, you draw your entire deck, but infinite combos are boring. More interesting are protracted synergies like Grim Haruspex + Golgari Thug + Phyrexian Altar. With both creatures on the field, you sacrifice Golgari Thug and put a different creature from your graveyard on top of your library, then replace the draw trigger with dredge. This puts the Thug into your hand and effectively mills you by three. Now you have one mana floating due to the Phyrexian Altar, so you only need one more to recast the Golgari Thug and do it all again. This lets you mill cards until you run out of mana or find a creature that you want to actually draw/reanimate, which is incredibly powerful. On top of this interaction, creatures die all the time in this deck and we are more than happy to draw for their trouble.
Your assessment on Sunforger is spot on. The effect is incredibly powerful but costs way too much mana. As I mentioned before, my meta isn't too competitive, so I don't feel bad running a fun card like this. It's been on the chopping block before and will probably be removed soon, but for now I'm content leaving it.
That's enough about my deck though. I've been looking through yours and I have a few questions for you. How have Doomed Necromancer, Feldon of the Third Path, Gray Merchant of Asphodel, and Stingscourger worked for you? I've considered all of these cards in the past but have yet to take them out for a spin. As a fellow Alesha player, have you considered Thalia, Guardian of Thraben or Grenzo, Dungeon Warden? If so I'd love to hear your take on them!
Thanks again for looking through my list, I hope I provided some useful insight :)
1 month ago
This is definitely the best Marchesa deck I've seen on the site (besides my own, of course, hehehe). I think a low-curve deck is the best way to play Marchesa and you've clearly got that here. I'm just gonna shotgun some suggestions from my personal experience with the deck.
First off, you have no graft creatures, and I strongly urge you to try them. At least replace Olivia, Mobilized for War with Vigean Graftmage, which does the same thing without having to discard cards, and has crazy upside. Assemble a sac outlet, a value creature, Marchesa, and a grafter, and you can sac the grafter and value creature on your turn, return them on end step, then repeat the process on each opponent's turn. With your amount of tutors, Vedalken Graftmage should probably be good enough since it's the lowest CMC grafter, but Cytoplast Manipulator or Helium Squirter might be worth trying as well.
Trinket Mage is a house, and he comes with plenty of options. You even own a Mana Crypt, so I feel as though you have no excuse. I understand the 3 drop slot is crowded but Trinket Mage for Mana Crypt is a net 1 mana play, and he can also find Skullclamp and Sensei's Divining Top. Basically, recurring it will quickly leave you with a ton of mana and cards. I also play Heap Doll and Arcbound Worker which look poor but the Doll can recur itself alongside Marchesa without a sac outlet and you currently lack grave hate, and the Worker can recur a value artifact creature on each player's turn like a graft creature would.
Dark Confidant and Grenzo, Dungeon Warden are strong 2drops that also synergize pretty well with Marchesa. I'd rather play a Confidant on 2 than a Signet, that's for sure. On that note, I've tried most of the 2drops you're currently playing, and been disappointed with Lightning Mauler, Signets, Lightning Greaves, Nightscape Familiar, and Blood Artist. The mana cards are nice but if you have another 2drop it's usually better to play that and then the rocks are not great for the rest of the game. Meanwhile, haste enablers are basically just inferior graft creatures, and while they're nice for curving out, I think playing a value creature or sac outlet on 2 is far better and worth going all in on.
Necropotence feels a little unnecessary when you can just draw a billion cards anyway by assembling the Marchesa engine. Though it is a damn good card, and nice to have when the Marchesa thing gets broken up.
Big Game Hunter is probably the best removal guy. I like drawing a zillion cards then casting him for B in my cleanup step. Fulminator Mage is another utility 3 that can really come in handy, and it recurs itself alongside Marchesa without the need for a sac outlet.
Play Mindslicer. It's a great way to beat combo and battlecruiser alike. You'll rebuild from it better than anybody else. Well, sometimes the graveyard decks will get you, but they might not be well set up enough by turn 4 to do anything.
I feel like the wheels sorta come off here when you get above 3 cmc. Murderous Redcap does combo but is a dead draw too often otherwise, and the same is true of Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker. Kiki is trying to do what your deck already does, and does it slower. Kiki can recur an ETB once per turn cycle while a graft creature usually gives you 4 (1 for each player in the game). Treasonous Ogre is cool but red mana isn't terribly useful and Ashnod's Altar is more efficient ramp. Definitely consider Ashnod's Altar and Phyrexian Altar, they're more explosive sac outlets than Yahenni and Bloodthrone Vampire (though admittedly somewhat more vulnerable). River Kelpie is too much to pay for a Grim Haruspex effect, Grimgrin is quite slow and it sucks having to wait turns and then pay so much for a sac outlet, and Zealous Conscripts is strong but I've often found I'd much rather cast Treachery or Act of Aggression (which is also instant speed removal). Time Warp is great but feels rather out of place and I like to be flashy and go for the big Temporal Trespass. Getting a value creature on board and having a 3 mana time walk is pretty nice when trying to recover from getting your field picked apart.
Mikaeus, the Unhallowed actually sucks because of the "non-Human" clause. Double recurring is sweet value but graft creatures also let you recur your creatures a ton while also protecting themselves AND marchesa.Also, I've found that you don't really need a combo finisher. Just getting your engine online is usually enough, and when it isn't, kill them all with Flayer of the Hatebound damage. Then again, I understand if your local meta makes a combo finish necessary.
Lastly, Abyssal Gatekeeper is nice for similar reasons to Nevermaker, since it can be instant-speed removal on board when needed. However, I just cut it from my build, because you just can't cast it until you have everything else in place because people love to 2 for 1 you by killing it which will kill anything else you've played, so I recommend against it.
I feel like this is the most well-built Marchesa deck I've seen so far and you have a good understanding of how best to use the commander, and that understanding will advance once you cast a Vigean Graftmage.
1 month ago
There is a couple of good options. You can try to use green and red and play Wort, the Raidmother but that will be a lot spells and just a couple of creatures (you can play goblins, create token and then copy an Overrun ftw). Wort, Boggart Auntie is also a super good alternative because of the sheer power of black in EDH or you can play Grenzo, Dungeon Warden (there is a couple of super fast combo decks but also a lot of goblin tribal versions. Last but not least there is Krenko, Mob Boss that has various options to make infinite mana and tokens and swing for lethal but keep in mind that he will almost instantly draw your opponents attention... (either you win fast or they hate you out). I play Grenzo and Wort raidmother. Grenzo as Doomsday combo deck and Wort as a ramp/burn/token swarm durdle deck. They are both super fun to play and IMHO you can not do anything wrong when choosing one of the best tribals in EDH. Just the sheer speed of Krenko will probably make your opponents focus you instantly.You might also be interested in Druid tribal with Seton, Krosan Protector which plays like elfball and wins via Craterhoof Behemoth (super super fast deck) or Elfball (got some crazy win cons with Paradox Engine, Staff of Domination, Umbral Mantle ).If you did not play magic for a long period of time I would really check out other tribals if you did not do already.I hope I could already help you a bit. Feel free to ask questions :)