Merchant of Secrets

Legality

Format Legality
Noble Legal
1v1 Commander Legal
Vintage Legal
Modern Legal
Casual Legal
Vanguard Legal
Legacy Legal
Archenemy Legal
Planechase Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Unformat Legal
Pauper Legal
Commander / EDH Legal

Printings View all

Set Rarity
Commander 2017 (C17) Common
Eighth Edition (8ED) Common
Legions (LGN) Common

Combos Browse all

Merchant of Secrets

Creature — Human Wizard

When Merchant of Secrets enters the battlefield, draw a card.

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Merchant of Secrets Discussion

FrigidOfficial on Inalla's Tap Studio (EDH Adaptive Combo)

2 weeks ago

Hey Pygmyrhino990! Glad you like the deck. I can go over each of the cards that are over $5 and explain why I think they're replaceable or not.

  • Chromatic Lantern is one of the best mana rocks in the game. The ability to get all of our colors online whenever we want is really great, especially since some of our strongest cards like Arcanis the Omnipotent, Dualcaster Mage, and Necropotence are all color intensive. I would likely just replace this with another mana rock if it were to be taken out.

  • Cyclonic Rift is an incredible one-sided board wipe. I would say that this card is a blue staple and that nothing can compare to it; if you want to run something like Devastation Tide, it could work, but it would be far less effective for a number of reasons.

  • Drowned Catacomb is just a pretty good land. You can replace this with a basic or enters-tapped dimir dual (such as Jwar Isle Refuge) depending on how fast your version of the deck is if you build it.

  • Gamble is a decent tutor that can pick up anything. For a much slower but more reliable tutor, there's always Diabolic Tutor.

  • Kess, Dissident Mage is a powerhouse. She can recur our cantrips and, on our turn, protect us if we're trying to combo and have a counterspell in the yard. If you don't own her, there really isn't a great replacement that does the same thing. Izzet Chronarch isn't too bad if you want more recursion, but Kess is just too good to give up in my opinion.

  • Kindred Discovery is a decent draw engine that can really help us get online if we make a lot of copies. A replacement for this could come in the form of a straight up draw spell such as Opportunity or a political enchantment such as Curse of Verbosity. The slot is really up to you though, as the card isn't necessary for the deck to be good an can likely be swapped out for whatever you would like.

  • Mystical Tutor is another blue staple that I don't think has any great replacements. Just a solid card overall.

  • Necropotence is the single best draw engine in the game. I almost always find a win very soon after it resolves. The best replacement for this is probably Phyrexian Arena; it's slow but consistent draw.

  • Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx is a decent land that can probably be replaced with another land of your choice.

  • Paradox Engine is one of the main cards in this deck and one of the main ways we can accidentally or intentionally land a win. I can't think of anything that would replace this.

  • Patron Wizard is a really annoying card that does a LOT of work. It's incredibly expensive, though. There isn't really another card that has a similar effect, but you could try to run another counterspell or maybe play around with Ixalan's new Siren Stormtamer.

  • Reliquary Tower is another EDH staple that is probably fine to replace with any land of your choice.

  • Rhystic Study is a solid tax effect / draw engine that will be very annoying for your opponents. It's one of the better consistent draws in blue. This can be replaced with an upkeep extra draw effect such as Monastery Siege or another straight up draw spell if that's more up your alley. Merchant of Secrets is slow but not atrocious.

  • Sensei's Divining Top is just great fixing. I would try to pick one up when you can, as it has done wonders in most of my decks. If you don't want to spend the money, Sage of Epityr might be worth checking out as a one-time Top that filters garbage if we have some of our scry effects up.

  • Sigil Tracer is recurrable copy effect that can also hit our opponents' spells. It is a bit mana intensive, though. I don't love this card and you could play something like Wild Ricochet or Reverberate instead if you like the copy effect. If not, you can replace this with pretty much anything.

  • Sulfurous Springs is another good dual land that can be replaced with another land.

  • Thran Dynamo is just a big mana rock that can be replaced with another artifact that taps for multiple mana, such as Worn Powerstone.

  • Toxic Deluge is a solid board wipe that is cheap and gets around indestructible. You could try playing Languish or a destroy wipe such as Necromantic Selection or Kindred Dominance instead.

  • Wanderwine Prophets is an insanely annoying one card infinite turn combo if you can land it. It isn't integral to winning the game, however, and if you want another way to get infinite turns you could always replace it with Final Fortune (imprint Final Fortune on Isochron Scepter, at the end of the next turn use Sundial of the Infinite to avoid the lose the game trigger, repeat). If not, it can just be replaced with another high value wizard such as Havengul Lich or Vindictive Lich.

FrigidOfficial on Inalla's Tap Studio (EDH Adaptive Combo)

2 months ago

Hey Frank. I have been posting quite a bit on the deck, but I think it's worthwhile to have a transparent discussion so that anyone who wants to make suggestions can see our line of thought with changing the deck. Hopefully the TappedOut admins don't get to me :P

I have posted another update with possible changes based on your most recent long list of suggestions. I think many of the ideas are valid and will definitely try them out when I have the money / time.

As for the last few posts:

  1. I enjoyed doing the game writeups. I'll try to mention my mulligan and opening hand more often; I couldn't remember everything after the game had ended. I will try to do more in the future.

  2. Rhystic Study is looking to replace Phyrexian Arena when I can pick up a copy. It's less color intensive and more efficient. I still like Paradox Engine, personally.

  3. Your change definitely makes sense. Pact of Negation as a way to interrupt a combo interrupter is a great idea, and since your list is faster it would make more sense for you to try to combat spot removal.

  4. That average CMC is solid; we can safely dump our hand and refill in most cases.

  5. I have looked at slotting Blasphemous Act for some of my weaker enchantments.

  6. That's what I anticipated. Playing both altars as a redundancy effect allows us more ways to combo out than just relying on Ashnod's Altar, and playing Mistbind Clique gives us another pseudo win condition alongside Bloodline Necromancer. Our opponents thus have to worry about four cards as opposed to two.

  7. Wanderwine Prophets is interesting in my meta where not everyone plays a ton of creatures. Some people in my pod play very few creatures and, if they do, they're usually weak and can be removed easily. I have been able to land the combo a few times and it wins on the spot. It's not something that I would tutor for, but is a huge threat and at the very least can be played to bait removal.

  8. Augur of Bolas for Merchant of Secrets is a change I am now looking at making.

  9. Gamble is probably being slotted in for one of my worse wizards when I have the money for it.

  10. Into the Roil is a good change for Reality Shift. I was thinking about maybe taking out Terminate instead, as Reality Shift can prevent our opponents from casting non-creature spells.

  11. Six counters should be fine, at least in my opinion. I assume you're still running Patron Wizard and I know you run Voidmage Prodigy, so we have 6 true counters, a recurrable Mana Tithe effect, and a likely few counters out of Voidmage. That should be enough in my opinion.

  12. By Force is going to be better in most cases. I will slot Vandalblast out unless I am playing against an artifact heavy deck.

  13. I was looking at possibly adding Chain of Vapor also. Thoughts?

Frank_Glascock on Inalla's Tap Studio (EDH Adaptive Combo)

2 months ago
  1. Thanks for the recap. I hope you would consider doing additional game updates. You reveal different lines of play for less experienced players like myself.

  2. I cut Paradox Engine before these last series of changes. It may have been to get Rhystic Study back into the deck. Necropotence and Mystic Remora round out my enchantments. I can say without any reservation that Rhystic Study is superior to Phyrexian Arena. You are going to draw more cards and Rhystic Study serves as a quasi-stax effect.

  3. Panharmonicon was replaced by Pact of Negation. This was a recommendation by another player. It makes a lot of sense. I usually think of Pact of Negation as a way to overcome opponent's counterspells on the turn we combo. This deck can also use it to thwart spot removal (Swords to Plowshares, Reality Shift, Chaos Warp, ect) on either Dualcaster Mage or Bloodline Necromancer when we are trying to close out games. Does this makes sense in my slightly faster version?

  4. My average mana cost is 2.45. That involves averaging out the mana costs for Force of Will Blasphemous Acts and Cyclonic Rift over the course of ten casts.

  5. Blasphemous Acts is another card you will see dividends from playing. It is probably an include even if you are playing in straight combo pods 50% of the time.

  6. My plans for Mistbind Clique were derailed tonight. Still, I am playing both altars as redundancy for the Bloodline Necromancer combo and as value. Mistbind Clique is probably good enough to play on its own. The ability to land lock the table for 4U with one of the altars in play is pretty sweet bonus.

  7. I talked with fellow Inalla player who was playing straight combo like us. He removed Wanderwine Prophets from his deck because it was too conditional on having an opponent without blockers. How often do you find Wanderwine Prophets to be your means to victory? I am not cutting it. I just wanted to hear you perspective on the card.

  8. The new additions to the deck have performed well.

Augur of Bolas seems like a better version of Merchant of Secrets largely due to the two mana cost and the presence of the extra tutors in my version.

Gamble sometimes feels like it should be Grim Tutor or Imperial Seal yet it costs one mana and tutors the card to your hand. It won me a game tonight as I had eight or nine cards in hand (Rhystic Study) and Kess, Dissident Mage on board. I tutored up the Bloodline Necromancer combo and won the following turn.

Rhystic Study has been covered.

Into the Roil was substituted for Reality Shift. I would love to play both but that would require cutting Voidmage Prodigy or Glen Elendra Archmage. I am at 23 wizards and I want to avoid letting this deck get too fast and competitive.

All six counterspells are staying. I would consider a seventh in Negate if the meta was not so creature dominated.

Frank_Glascock on Inalla's Tap Studio (EDH Adaptive Combo)

2 months ago

1.Glen Elendra Archmage and Sower of Temptation are in my deck. I kept Voidmage Prodigy. I think I am going to test Augur of Bolas in place of Merchant of Secrets. Mistbind Clique is going in for Master of Waves.

  1. How valuable has Intruder Alarm been? Wizards that tap for abilities in my list consists of Azami, Lady of Scrolls, Patron Wizard, Sigil Tracer and Jace's Archivist. The latter two have a mana cost associated with their ability. I think I have found my cut for Phyrexian Altar.

FrigidOfficial on Inalla's Tap Studio (EDH Adaptive Combo)

2 months ago
  1. Necropotence is almost certainly going in for me. It will most likely replace Comet Storm or Blue Sun's Zenith.

  2. That's a good idea. Glen Elendra Archmage is a solid card that I would definitely play if I had the funds.

  3. Merchant of Secrets is a good swap for the guaranteed draw.

  4. Also a good swap. I like the Mistbind Clique land lock.

  5. Sensei's Divining Top is an inclusion for me to fix draws. It's just a generally good card and if I'm taking out cards anyway, I might as well try it out.

  6. I'm interested in that choice. Is there a different three mana rock that could be slotted out instead of Chromatic Lantern? Lantern is so good for fixing, especially with the high color costs in cards such as Patron Wizard and Azami, Lady of Scrolls. This also applies if we decide to include Necropotence.

Frank_Glascock on Inalla's Tap Studio (EDH Adaptive Combo)

2 months ago

I went through the update.

  1. I have been very close to putting Necropotence into the deck. I just think getting to triple black may be tough. The cut would be Rhystic Study. What do you think?

  2. Riptide Director is getting cut for Glen Elendra Archmage. This has always been one if my pet cards.

  3. I slotted in Merchant of Secrets for Sage of Fables.

  4. Mistbind Clique is going in for Master of Waves.

  5. You threw me a curve with Sensei's Divining Top. I guess Preordain is going to have whipflash.

Frank_Glascock on Inalla's Tap Studio (EDH Adaptive Combo)

2 months ago

I think I was brainstorming late last night. I hope you would not mind if I consolidate all the questions I had here. I will use the FrigidOfficial numbering method of which I am a fan.

  1. Am I right in my understanding of Mistbind Clique? You may have to read my post from last night for clarification.

What wizard if any would you cut from my list for Mistbind Clique? I am playing Sower of Temptation and Master of Waves in place of Merchant of Secrets and Viscera Seer. I cut Arcanis the Omnipotent to go to 25 creatures. Has Sage of Fables consistently drawn you cards?

The next number is 2 on my screen but Tappedout changes it to 1.

  1. Does Phyrexian Altar have a place in the deck? It is another enabler for Bloodline Necromancer and has synergy with Mistbind Clique. How often do you find yourself sacrificing wizards to Ashnod's Altar for Mana? How often does Ashnod's Altar get removed preventing you from going off with Bloodline Necromancer?

  2. Can you detail the Ghostly Flicker/Dualcaster Mage combo? Am I right that this cuts one blue from the cost of the combo? Is this more fragile that using Rite of Replication even though it is a sorcery?

  3. How is 35 lands doing for you? I am at 36 even with the addition of the mana artifacts.

  4. How is Kindred Discovery performing? I ask because I am playing Mystic Remora and Rhystic Study both of which I believe will draw me more cards. I am thinking or cutting it and playing Preordain instead. Consider that Preordain has synergy with Snapcaster Mage, Archaeomancer and Kess, Dissident Mage. Am I off base?

I do not want to play another tutor in this spot as Grim Tutor speeds up our combo. I am playing three low cost black tutors, Mystical Tutor and Vedalken AEthermage.

FrigidOfficial on Inalla's Tap Studio (EDH Adaptive Combo)

2 months ago
  1. Those seem like fine additions. We get ramp in colors that don't usually have it and remove many of the slower or solely value-based cards. Those counters seem fine. If you're trying to combo out faster, I would suggest Ghostly Flicker over Rite of Replication. I use Rite of Replication because, despite the combo nature of my meta, our decks are still more on the 75% side and tend to be slower.

  2. Mistbind Clique was considered as it is a viable lock, but not added due to budget reasons.

  3. Viscera Seer gives us another way to utilize our tokens in the form of fixing our draws. If the tokens are going to be sacrificed anyways, we might as well get something extra out of the deaths. Arcanis the Omnipotent is fine to remove. He is slow if you're trying to combo out quickly. In my case, I can safely get him out and expect to draw a turn later. The extra artifact ramp is a good idea for your brew.

  4. I like Panharmonicon for my slower version. Trinket Mage and Trophy Mage become far better, as do many of the subpar wizards (such as Merchant of Secrets, which becomes 3U draw four cards). It is probably fine to cut if your only intent is to combo out. The version of the deck I've been playing is more of an adaptive combo deck as opposed to a true combo deck.

  5. With regards to your comment on my profile, feel free to call me whatever you'd like. The part about getting four triggers instead of six is also valid, though in my experience four triggers is usually enough to kill an opponent who has been abusing shocks and fetches; someone who has been able to ramp to around 6-8 lands by pinging themselves should be at around 26-28 life and at that point Anathemancer is just "2BR: Kill your opponent".

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