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Nest of Scarabs
Whenever you put one or more -1/-1 counters on a creature, create that many 1/1 black Insect creature tokens.
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Nest of Scarabs Discussion
2 weeks ago
Get an arbitrarily large quillspike, add Obelisk Spider or hapatra for a better payoff.
I go more in depth on all of this in my Mistress of Poisons primer. I retired the deck because my group is pretty casual and the deck won turn 3-5 a few times... Could do better with some tweaks.
1 month ago
Nest could actually trigger twice in this instance. It may or may not matter, but could if something like Blowfly Infestation was in play. First, Nest triggers when the 2 counters are placed on Soulstinger... then it may trigger again (Soulstinger's second ability is optional) when those counters are moved to opponent's creature. In this case, if you chose to move counters upon Soulstinger's death, Nest of Scarabs would produce 8 insect tokens in total (2+6).
1 month ago
Phillygreenman007... so I was considering Canker Abomination... in this build it wouldn't net creatures unless I used it as a counter-dump. ETB-with-counters doesn't trigger Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons, or Nest of Scarabs. For a similar effect and same cmc, I could use Soulstinger, which I had considered in the past, but sorta forgot about. When Soulstinger was released, I initially thought it would allow you to target multiple creatures, which it doesn't, however it has great synergy with Nest of Scarabs. I dropped Soulstinger in standard because it was too slow, but it might (big might) be worth a try in this build, especially with Necroskitter in play.
2 months ago
This is a good start. I feel like you are starting to look at cards the right way- assessing how to balance their disruptiveness and value, but the deck still feels a little unfocussed.
Lets look at a core concept in magic- card advantage- and build to that.
There are enablers; cards that don't do things on their own (lands, ramp spells, combo pieces, most 1/1s, etc). Proactive cards that are very good when your play them on their own (kitchen finks type stuff, planeswalkers) Reactive cards that are good at trading 1-for-1 with proactive cards (mana leak, fatal push), Card advantage spells (things that mean you effectively have more cards played, even if they don't always read 'draw a card'.)
If you have more relavant answers than your opponent has proactive cards, then they'll mostly find it difficult to hit you. If you have more playable proactive cards than your opponent you'll probably be able to race them. If you have cards that slot into multiple categories in useful ways, you have virtual card advantage, and can pick the appropriate approach for the particular matchup. These are the core concepts that you need to build midrange.
Lets look at what your deck wants to do. A build around Demonlord of Ashmouth and Demon of Catastrophes, with enablers in the form of small creatures and ramp spells, and a few spot answers with light card advantage tools to clear the way. You're prepared to give up cards to demonlord of ashmouth or demon of catastrophies to have a big threat hitting your opponent. This is a really good start that the rest of your deck should build to support. A big threat that goes over aggro and fights through answers.
So general principals- you want enough card advantage to offset your enablers, or to make those enablers useful in other ways. You want enablers that also help you race down other decks with big flying demons. And you want tools to protect those demons.
Budget lists can't afford the 'universally good' stuff, like Collective Brutality or Cryptic Command, so you need to look at larger groups of teir 2 cards with good synergy and large print runs, preferably with deckbuilding restrictions that cut the price further. So lets cover some general options, explain the why, and then leave you to find things to fill out the list.
You want things that make small creatures and make these big things easier to cast. Llanowar Elves(price listing on this is busted) and Elves of Deep Shadow will let you cut the land count some- and they'll let you slam a big demon earlier whilst providing a body to sacrifice. Turn 1 extra mana is strong enough for people to spend their lightning bolt on it- and thats one more thing not pointed at the threats.
While Sylvan Caryatid is a great card, spending an extra mana to 'blank' a removal spell with hexproof is less relevant when your big stuff doesn't also blank removal, and likely isn't worth the extra mana (its great when your threats are stuff like enchantments or combos which are hard to disrupt).
Scavenging Ooze should be maindeck- its a graveyard meta, and its a decent body that likes you sacrificing creatures, lifegain is relevant, and even against decks that play no creatures it hits their snapcaster targets. Its both a threat and an answer. Cards that give you lots of options are good.
Cards that let you play with +1/+1 and -1/-1 counters are good in sacrifice lists- much like Gavony Township makes Kitchen Finks nigh-unkillable, Cauldron Haze and cards like Exemplar of Strength or Hapatra's Mark/Heartmender/Nest of Scarabs with Young Wolf and Safehold Elite or Black Sun's Zenith can really put in work. You just need to be sure to pick cards that all work well together. While individually they are worse than high value cards, as a group they can outperform- and most importantly, choose them to be versatile.
A card that gives an aggressive and defensive option is perfect for midrange. When building the spine of your deck, look for groups like this to fill it out. Having interseting choices makes the game fun.
Most of all, playtest, and have fun playing. Because thats how you get a top-notch deck. I'd take a look at Rite of Belzenlok decks in standard right now, they showcase a lot of the tools you'll be looking for, and its a good card for the archetype (even if its a little slow).
2 months ago
@Obdulio8, I'm not sold to Fume Spitter, and the Carnifex Demon and Kulrath Knight seem too high-cost compared with the rest of the deck, although you have Channeler Initiate. I'm also not sure about Undying Evil; I would definitely play 4 of each combo piece, 3 Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons and 4 Nest of Scarabs, 4 Obelisk Spider
3 months ago
Atramentous - not true. The Scarab will die when state-based actions are checked, which will be upon resolution of Skinrender's ability. This will be after Nest of Scarabs ability is triggered and put on the stack, but before Nest of Scarabs resolves. As such, the Scarab will die first, then the tokens will be created.
Gordeaux - once you've had your question answered, there's a "Mark as Answer" button next to every each post. If you have no further questions, please mark an accepted answer to help with forum organisation. Thanks!
3 months ago
Please link cards with double brackets, it makes things a little easier:
[[skinrender]] [[nest of scarabs]]
A creature dying to 0 or less toughness is a type of state-based action (Rule 704.5f). State-based actions check automatically whenever a player would gain priority.
A player cannot gain priority in the middle of spell or ability. As such, state-based actions will not check in the middle of Skinrender's ability.
So, Skinrender's ability will resolve and put all three -1/-1 counters on the Scarab Token, before state-based actions will be checked. All three counters will go the 1/1. This will result in Nest of Scarabs triggering and its ability going on the stack. State-based actions will check once Skinrender's ability resolves and the Scarab Token will die due to having less than 0 toughness. Then Nest of Scarabs will resolve and create three Scarab Tokens.