Minister of Pain


Format Legality
Tiny Leaders Legal
1v1 Commander Legal
Magic Duels Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Vintage Legal
Modern Legal
Leviathan Legal
Legacy Legal
Frontier Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Unformat Legal
Casual Legal
Commander / EDH Legal

Printings View all

Set Rarity
Dragons of Tarkir (DTK) Uncommon

Combos Browse all

Related Questions

Minister of Pain

Creature — Human Shaman

Exploit (When this creature enters the battlefield, you may sacrifice a creature.)

When Minister of Pain exploits a creature, creatures your opponents control get -1/-1 until end of turn.

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Have (3) ironax , Yawkcorb , bakeraj4
Want (1) bpm4

Minister of Pain Discussion

TehGrief on Art of the Bloodchief (Modern)

1 month ago


What SynergyBuild said is correct, about it hurting us.

When you say that Ratchet Bomb would be good to destroy the tokens created by Forbidden Orchard, you seem to be forgetting that we also have tokens that are created with both Lingering Souls and Teysa, Orzhov Scion.

The deck also runs Killing Wave and Minister of Pain; together that should be plenty enough removal to deal with the tokens created for our opponents.

L0stinExile on Vaevy girl

2 months ago

Nether Void is just insane.

Carpet of Flowers is a must-have in any stax deck where blue decks are going to be in your play group. Guttural Response, Red Elemental Blast, Pyroblast also things I'd recommend if blue decks are prevalent.

Minister of Pain is a surprisingly powerful card, and combos with Living Plane to practically shut down a game outright.

I'm also noticing a distinct lack of discard effects. One of the best ones in stax is Bottomless Pit.

Oh, and Contamination is fun, but you're very light on creatures so it might not be all that worth it in this particular list. Speaking of creatures, no Elves of Deep Shadow or Dark Confidant?

FireStorm4056 on [PRIMER] Death & Staxes: Competitive Meren EDH

3 months ago


If you need a second Minister of Pain, it is definitely something to consider. In general I wouldn't think you would need more than one outside of special circumstances, such as lots of tokens in your meta, or your playgroup packing lots of grave hate (where need to ensure a backup win condition in case Minister of Pain gets exiled).

If you only pick one, I still think Minister of Pain is the better choice, because:

  1. Minister of Pain automatically loops with itself (don't need a sac outlet, just need Meren)
  2. Minister can be used as a free sac outlet for another key creature (i.e. Mindslicer or Reclamation Sage)
  3. Single- is preferable to double-.

On the other hand, if combat is very relevant for you, or you have more sacrifice engines you need to feed, then Plague Mare might be a better meta call (though in general, imo the advantages of Minister outweigh those of Plague Mare)

Bearmagus on [PRIMER] Death & Staxes: Competitive Meren EDH

3 months ago

So what do you think of Plague Mare as a second Minister of Pain? Worth running both?

FireStorm4056 on [PRIMER] Death & Staxes: Competitive Meren EDH

4 months ago


Apologies, got a bit ahead of myself and submitted that comment early. A few corrections:

  • You can choose not to Exploit with Minister of Pain, but your opponents can still Strip Mine or Wasteland AFTER you make that choice and while the -1/-1 ability is on the stack.
  • Minister of Pain will NOT kill your own lands (apologies, I also play a more casual mass-destruction deck and got mixed up for a minute). However your opponents can still instant-speed remove Urborg and prevent Minister from actually wiping their landbase (though you might still get a swamp here or there)

FireStorm4056 on [PRIMER] Death & Staxes: Competitive Meren EDH

4 months ago


Re: Tutor Targets: Obviously it depends on the game, but I would say by far the most common searches are for two cards: Contamination and Living Plane. Contamination on its own locks out many decks, but devastates practically all cEDH lists if you manage to land it together with a Null Rod on the field. Because Null Rod is one of the very first cards you'll want to find in many games, there is a reasonable chance you have already tutored and played it. If you have, a subsequent Contamination usually just ends the game as your opponents have no way to play anything and would slowly die via combat damage. (Two big exceptions are mono-black opponents and mana dorks - however mono- is basically non-existent in CEDH, and mana dorks are usually already dead to wipes or Merciless Executioner effects). Living Plane is the other main tutor target, as it is 1/2 of the "winning" combo and the other 1/2 (Minister of Pain) is "findable" by a much greater number of tutors (i.e. Survival of the Fittest). So, the find-anything tutors are usually used to find the enchantment half of the combo.


Chains of Mephistopheles is a lot like Carpet of Flowers - depending on your opponents' decks it is either outrageously powerful or completely useless. For me the reasoning on both cards is pretty simple - Carpet of Flowers is almost always "on" (very rarely is NO ONE at the table playing blue), while Chains of Mephistopheles is usually rather useless. It purely comes down to the fact that the particular decks in my meta just aren't shut down by it, so it's not worth including. It is always something to keep on the radar, however; stax is an extremely meta-dependent archetype and for many it will be a fantastic inclusion.

Re: Budget - Unless you are playing ~75% EDH or below, I wouldn't recommend the Kormus Bell route; it is just too difficult to assemble all three cards, and also quite vulnerable to disruption. The main issue is that non-creature cards are FAR more difficult to tutor for. Finding one non-creature card (for the existing two-card combo) is doable but even that can pose issues at times; having to find TWO non-creature cards is a very big ask and I just don't see it being very viable against competitive opponents. The combo would usually be slowly assembled and (likely) telegraphed, but there is an even bigger problem with it. Assuming Kormus Bell and Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth are in play, and you cast a Minister of Pain, any of your opponents can instant-speed respond by killing Urborg with Strip Mine or Wasteland, so that when Minister resolves, you will end up just killing a bunch of your own swamps (maybe some of theirs, but most of their lands will survive and many of yours will not).

On a budget I would HIGHLY recommend going the Hulk Combo route as a wincon, and by far one of the best decklists available for this is roguelikedev's Honorbru Meren (see below). The wincon package is much cheaper (financially) and is at least as potent/competitive as my approach (if not moreso!!!)

Honorbru Meren (Finite Hulk)

Commander / EDH roguelikedev


tacosalad on Shirei, Shizo's Caretaker Binary v1.4

1 year ago

UnleashedHavok, thanks for the kind words. This deck is a joy to play. Minister of Pain does look like an interesting card to try. I'll toss it in the pile and see how it goes.

As far as Alesha goes, she is my second oldest deck. I run her as a vicious toolbox. See for the most current iteration. Whenever I go play somewhere new, I usually run Alesha since she can play battlecruiser, or fast combo equally well. I spend hours reviewing new sets and playtesting new toys for Alesha.

UnleashedHavok on Shirei, Shizo's Caretaker Binary v1.4

1 year ago

I gotta say tacosalad..... I do not understand why I am the only one to have upvoted this gem you have. I really like the different approach you have taken with Shirei, and am heavily considering building this deck after I finish my Neheb, the Eternal build. It's funny you mention Alesha, Who Smiles at Death in your description because she is my main deck. I have been building around, and slightly struggling, with the Fate Reforged legendary humans for the past year. I really like them. The issue I have been running into is that they are all 3 color generals, and I've been struggling with balancing the colors.

Anyway... back on target. I know that she is not recurrable with Shirei, but I think it is a definite synergy with the deck; Minister of Pain. It's surprising just how many combo enabling creatures are just 1 toughness. This creature can shut down a lot of strategies, not to mention the obvious take-down of most token decks.

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