|Commander / EDH||Legal|
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|2011 Core Set (M11)||Rare|
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Creature — Beast
When Obstinate Baloth enters the battlefield, you gain 4 life.
If a spell or ability an opponent controls causes you to discard Obstinate Baloth, put it onto the battlefield instead of putting it into your graveyard.
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Obstinate Baloth Discussion
1 week ago
Some thoughts, in no particular order ...
- I go back and forth on Kessig Wolf Run vs. adding another Fetch. I've certainly won games with Wolf Run plus a Bird or Elf. But I've also had to mul' due to Wolf Run in my opener. Before Tireless Tracker, Wolf run was definitely the better option IMO. With 3x Trackers though, I'm not so sure ...
- Another Land option is to go to 22 and drop a Bird. +1 Land means extra Clues, plus Lands don't die to removal/Birds do. Though of course, Birds can chump block Flyers/Lands can't.
- I'm sure it's just a playstyle thing, but I'm not personally a fan of a bunch of 1-ofs (unless a deck also has a bunch of tutors). They're of course amazing when we need them and actually draw them. But I really dislike drawing the wrong side of my deck. For example, I run 2x Chameleon Colossus and 2x Obstinate Baloth in my 75 like you do. But I play with 2x Colossus in the main and 2x Baloth in the side, rather than a 1-1 split.
- I've found Huntmaster of the Fells to be superb in grindy matchups, but underwhelming everywhere else.
Good luck (and skill) with the new deck!!!
2 weeks ago
For sideboard I would think of adding Stubborn Denial, Dispel, Dismember, Grafdigger's Cage, Relic of Progenitus, Ratchet Bomb, Card:Ceremonious Rejection, Disdainful Stroke, Engineered Explosives (I know it's expensive), Negate, Chalice of the Void (SUOER EXPENSIVE!), Obstinate Baloth, Nature's Claim, and Choke. I'm probably missing something though.
1 month ago
GeminiSpartanX thank you so much for breaking it down for me! You're right, i hadn't considered what my matchups might be. I don't really travel to go to big events, mainly just my local fnms and whatever events the shop will host. We do have a really competitive meta at the local shop and it's always changing. We usually have 1 person on affinity, and as far as i know there is only 1 person that plays living end. We have a lot of burn, some scapeshift, and a couple homebrew types with a couple of control players. You're spot on with Scavenging Ooze in the side. I hadn't even thought of it. I think I'm definitely going to try out an Obstinate Baloth and Inferno Titan in the main. Again, thank you so much for your advice!
1 month ago
Hello! You commented on my deck RG Ponza, PPTQ WINNER!! the other day asking for advise, so here it goes!
Firstly, Ponza is a great deck, mostly because you can customize it to handle just about anything between good RG creatures and SB cards. Often you can use a variety of threats to win as long as your opponent can't develop their game plan in a timely manner due to your LD spells. That being said, I'm going to explain why certain builds and card choices have helped me be more competitive with the deck, and offer suggestions on how you can change your deck for a larger open meta.
The first thing I noticed in your list are the 2 MD Surgical Extractions. These slots are better as almost anything else. I know your idea is probably to use them as pseudo LD by exiling all of a certain type of fetchland from an opposing deck, but here it isn't worth the slots. Most people think that Ponza is a dedicated Land Destruction (LD) deck, but it really isn't. The LD is there simply to keep an opponent off-balance enough for you to land a large monster and beat down for the win. This is why all competitive lists run Blood Moon. Against an opponent that isn't mono-colored, Blood Moon will often slow them down enough that your huge threats can attack with impunity. So I'd look to replace the surgicals and a number of Molten Rains with a playset of Blood Moons as the first upgrade to the deck.
Once you do that, your mana needs to change. More basic forests and only 1 basic mountain along with your 8 fetches is the ideal for a Blood Moon deck. Almost every game you want a forest on turn 1 to play a mana dork or Utopia Sprawl. If you have blood moon, you want to always put your sprawl on a basic forest so it won't fall off if you play a moon and had a sprawl on a stomping ground for instance (since it wouldn't be a forest any longer). My list reflects a typical mana base for reference (although many people prefer to use 3 stomping grounds instead of 2 grounds and 1 Cinder Glade).
Now let's talk about your threats. You acknowledged that you see most lists run Stormbreath Dragon and Inferno Titan, and there is good reason for that. You want to make sure that your threats have an immediate impact on the board when you play them, or are otherwise incredibly hard to remove. Your choice of Predator Dragon isn't great since you really don't want to hamstring yourself by killing off your own mana dorks just for your opponent then Path your dragon and you've effectively 2-for-1'd or even 3-for-1'd yourself. Stormbreath Dragon's protection from white means that there are only a few commonly played removal spells in modern that are able to deal with it, and often they're not run as 4-ofs in the decks that use them (pretty much just Terminate and Dismember). A resolved Inferno Titan kills one or more of your opponent's creatures just for hitting the battlefield, or at the very least Lightning Bolts their face. I've won a few games just by getting my opponent low enough that the etb damage finished them off, or won under an Ensnaring Bridge thanks to that damage. Since you get that damage every time the titan attacks, he essentially swings in as a 9/6, with the ability to pump his attack so that often he gets in for 12 damage per attack if your opponent doesn't block. The titan is one of the fastest clocks to win the game, and affects the board in some way even if he gets removed. Other commonly good creatures in Ponza are Thragtusk and Obstinate Baloth since they gain life, have good bodies/abilities, and help shore up burn and other agro matchups.
Part 2 of your creature selection, is that you should include more big creatures to use. Right now your list only has 6 big threats to win with, and I think that number should be 10 or more. One of the ways this deck loses is by drawing too many LD spells and not finding a threat to close out the game with. Eventually your opponent will stick something and if you still haven't found a threat you'll have a tough time. I count Planeswalkers as threats, so if you look at my list I'm running 11 solid must-answer threats, with 2 Courser of Kruphix as support/card advantage slots. Some lists run Tireless Tracker in those slots, but I like how courser blocks better and gains life against agro and burn, and is naturally resistant to bolt. I also like how you don't need to sink additional mana into it to get the card advantage. To make space for the additional threats, I'd cut the remaining Molten Rains and the Boom/Busts. You don't need as high of a quantity of LD spells when you have Blood Moon, since moon often disables multiple lands at once. I recommend using a variety of threats from 3-6 converted mana cost so that you have options in games where you have trouble getting your 4th land or if your opponent kills your early mana creature. I'm testing out Carnage Tyrant myself, so that is a good one to keep in your 75 for now. If you do get the moons and make the changes to your LD spells that I suggested, then Goblin Dark-Dwellers becomes less good due to having fewer targets in most games and should be replaced with other threats.
Finally, on to your SB. You mentioned on my deck that you're still in the process of making it, which leads me to believe you may not be as familiar with what the good/bad matchups are. Affinity is a tough matchup, as is lantern control. For that reason, I would use Ancient Grudges over Destructive Revelrys. Since you're not a burn deck, the 2 damage from revelry doesn't matter as much, and being able to remove 2 artifacts with one card is great against the decks we want to beat. Mono-colored decks are also tough, with the worst being Merfolk since they present a fast clock and can disrupt our mana by putting Spreading Seas on whichever land we enchant with Utopia Sprawl. I run a single Choke in the SB just for them. Storm is also a tough matchup, so you'll need grave-hate on turns 1-2 to deal with them. Cage is good, but I like a split of both cage and Relic of Progenitus since relic is also good against Living End, which happens to be another bad matchup. Cage doesn't stop Living End decks, so I lean towards more relics for that reason. I also use a Scavenging Ooze in the SB for added utility/grave hate when I just want something for Snapcaster mage decks. Carnage Tyrant and more often Thrun, the Last Troll are used against control decks. Many people use Kitchen Finks against attrition decks like Jund or Death's Shadow, but I like Obstinate Baloth and Chameleon Colossus better since they are good main-deckable threats. I personally like Acidic Slime in the SB as a way to deal with enchantments, artifacts, and opposing large creatures (deathtouch). Any other SB slots are up to your discretion as to what you want to beat.
Well, I know I wrote a book here, but hopefully I explained some of the reasons why many lists look the way that they do. One way you could go with your list here is to make the Blood Moon change last, keeping the Molten Rains in place of them to allow you to use the dark-dwellers as threats until you make the change (since Moon just wins many games by itself). This is only if the list you currently have here is what you have irl. If you're buying cards for it, just start with the blood moon version since it's more viable in larger events. Good luck with Ponza!
1 month ago
Yeah, you definitely need more 4-ofs, especially mana ramp. 4 Lightning Bolts is probably the most obvious thing to add in after that.
You might also want to lower the mana costs on your mana ramp. Llanowar Elves is good, and you have that. Search for Tomorrow, Sakura-Tribe Elder, and Arbor Elf + Utopia Sprawl/Fertile Ground/Overgrowth can go a long way as well. Arbor Elf also works in conjunction with Cinder Glade and Stomping Ground.
I've been thinking about R/G Dragons for a while now, just been waiting on the prices of some cards to come down. I think if you're on an unlimited budget, the list to play is something like:
4x Anger of the Gods
4x Search for Tomorrow
3x Blood Moon
4x Utopia Sprawl
1x Chandra, Flamecaller
1x Garruk, Primal Hunter / green planeswalker
4x Lightning Bolt
25 Other Spells
1x Blood Moon
1x Crumble to Dust
3x Destructive Revelry
1x Molten Rain
3x Obstinate Baloth
1x Thrun, the Last Troll
15 Sideboard Cards
You spend the first couple of turns ramping up and board wiping your opponents' threats, then finish them off with hasty dragons that are hard to remove.
1 month ago
I ran Batterskull maindeck for over a year, alongside a Thragtusk and two Obstinate Baloths. I pulled Batterskull and replaced with a Courser of Kruphix largely because I wanted the Batterskull for an EDH deck. Of the two, I prefer Thragtusk for the instant lifegain against Burn. Sometimes you're dead before Batterskull or Wurmcoil Engine can connect.
Regarding Big Chandra, do you prefer her over a Titan in the 6-drop slot? I tried her for a while, still prefer the Titan.
1 month ago
YourBoi-tman thank you. Obstinate Baloth as other anti-discard creatures is too expensive, 4 cmc is a lot for this deck and most of the times your opponent can choose which card to discard so unless it's the only card in your hand you don't get value from it.
1 month ago
Obstinate Baloth is really good against discard in the sideboard. I run a more midrange stompy list that i'll post someday. But I found this card to be amazing against 8-rack and lillies in general.