Creature — Human Wizard
When Pondering Mage enters the battlefield, look at the top three cards of your library, then put them back in any order. You may shuffle your library. Draw a card.
Printings View all
|Mystery Booster (MYS1)||Common|
|Modern Horizons (MH1)||Common|
Combos Browse all
|Commander / EDH||Legal|
Latest Decks as Commander
Pondering Mage Discussion
2 months ago
Thanks for the suggestions PaulMuadDib! I have some thoughts about your suggestions so I'll go through them step by step.
Pierce Strider/Jester's Scepter/Sapphire Charm: Once you have the combo, you should have access to your entire deck. Running cards for the explixit purpose of winning the game means that you are always running the risk of drawing a completely dead card. All current listed win-cons are both good as stand-alone cards but they also have the potential to provide a win-con later.
Skyscanner/Pondering Mage: These cards were previosly in the deck, but I took them out for separete reasons. Skyscanner was cut since most of or flicker/blink cards are single-target and single-use which means, just drawing a card proved to be to inefficient. The exclusion of Pondering Mage was because paying 5 mana for a Ponder was suppremely inefficient and the value that the ponder gained you was lost in how much mana it cost.
Engulf the Shore: You can reasonably expect to have between 2-3 per game. Thusly, this is going to function rather poorly as a boardwipe in the deck.
Again, thanks for the suggestions!
2 months ago
I was looking through tapped out for a budged deck yesterday and this is the one that I decided on using. I didn't have all of the cards you used but I was able to fill it in with cards lying around that were out of the super budget stuff lying around and the rest of the empty slots I was able to get for a under $10, very happy with the concept here.
One thing that new players should note, which I assume budget decks attract, is that if you flicker a creature (i.e. use a spell such as Turn to Mist on it), the spell you cast to make the creature flicker will still be on the stack when the creature's enter the battlefield trigger has to choose something. So for instance, when you cast Turn to Mist on Archaeomancer, you cannot choose to immediatly return Turn to Mist to your hand, it has to be something already in your graveyard.
Some alternative budget suggestions anyone reading this list might want to consider, if they already have them for example, are:
Pierce Strider can fill the same role that the chalice fills while still using the same flicker cards that the infinite mana generator uses.
Stern Proctor is some light artifact/enchantment hate. This deck seemed to be very light on artifact hate, so it needs something. Once you have infinite mana it might also be used to bounce your own Chalice/Strider to hand for victory.
Skyscanner is half a Mulldrifter for 3 mana, not a bad pick.
Think Twice is an alright draw card that Scrivener can get back or can be used in response to grave hate.
Pondering Mage is a decent effect with a 3/4 body.
Jester's Scepter could be put in as a second chalice: just flicker it a bunch and exile your opponent's libraries.
Azorius Chancery is a tap land and I generally don't encourage these, but if you are going for infinite mana combo via untapping lands, it can't hurt to had lands which can make extra mana. Also consider Temple of the False God if you take this route.
Sunscorched Desert can in fact win if the Chalice route is used since Ghostly Flicker is able to target lands.
Engulf the Shore is a decent boardwipe that could also be used to return your own creatures to your hand for value.
Time Wipe is a good boardwipe, especially if you are able to say, bounce something to recur your Breath of Life.
Sapphire Charm is also a second avenue to win the game via decking our your opponents. You choose the first mode and they get 100 or so draw 1 triggers during the next player's turn. Since the charm is an instant, it makes it possible to do the flicker combo on the end step before your turn so that, hopefully, your opponents have used up enough mana so that they can't do anything with the cards they draw on your upkeep; the draw triggers are one at a time so the opponents could respond to each one.
Also here are some upgrade suggestions of cards that are currently $2 or less, these are some of the cards I had lying around, for people willing to spend a bit more:
Library of Leng since you have the potential to draw a lot of cards in this deck, it's always nice to not worry about discarding them.
Star Compass this common is annoyingly expensive for it's effect: probably due to the diamond cycle being about double the price.
Flood of Tears isn't too bad since you get an etb right away. The next three should be considered as a unit:
High Tide can make the Drake produce 10 mana when it untaps only 5 lands.
Capsize will let you make infinite mana off of the Drake if you have at least 2 islands out and have cast high tide.
Cloud of Faeries is something that might work to combo off with if you are able to cast high tide multiple times in one turn. That's just a consideration here since I have yet to play test this deck against real players.
8 months ago
Hey, nice start, welcome to Commander and TappedOut :)
You can't play 2x Plague Wight in a Commander deck. Can only play 1x of every card except basic lands. The Scarab God is a powerful card as Commander General and at $30 it's not a budget card so it's great that you have it to make your first deck with.
Commander's Quarters has good overall ideas for decks, but best to not use the manabases they provide as good examples of manabases. Quarters makes budget decks, but it's deceiving because the manabases that they use are terrible since they don't allocate any of the budget for lands. Manabases are an afterthought in decks Quarters makes which is not good when the majority of people that view their content are new players who need guidance in how to best play Commander on a budget. Manabases are just as important in Commander then what creatures or other spells you play because you can't cast those cards if you don't have the right mana.
29x basic lands is fine for a one color deck, but when you're playing a second color you need more dual lands that make both colors that way you don't get color screwed having only one color of lands, but cards in your hand are the other color. As you play more Commander you will see that the majority of expense of a deck comes from the manabase because good lands in Magic are damn expensive. Most lands are expensive price, but there's still budget lands that are good such as Command Tower which is $1 and is one of the best, if not the best land, for multicolored decks in Commander.
Lands to consider adding:
- Command Tower
- Sunken Hollow
- Fetid Pools
- Tainted Isle
- Choked Estuary
- Darkwater Catacombs
- Esper Panorama
- Dimir Aqueduct
- Temple of Deceit
- Evolving Wilds
Other budget cards to consider adding (ordered by importance/price lowest ($1 or less) to highest ($3)):
- Diregraf Captain
- Lord of the Accursed
- Undead Augur
- Dreadhorde Invasion
- Mausoleum Secrets
- Carrion Feeder
- Dark Ritual
- Gleaming Overseer
- Rooftop Storm
- Dimir Signet
- Death Baron
- Cemetery Reaper
- Midnight Reaper
- Graveborn Muse
- Dread Wanderer
- Buried Alive
- Fleshbag Marauder
- Ransack the Lab
- Final Parting
Other than Scarab God you only need a few budget blue Zombies and a few other budget blue cards, you don't need very much blue because the majority of Zombies are all black. Budget blue Zombies that are worth including are Diregraf Captain and Gleaming Overseer, that's it. Other budget blue cards that are worth including are Rooftop Storm, Countersquall, Negate and Wonder.
Because of the land situation not being ideal then consider cutting all cards with double blue mana costs? Cards with single blue and double black are fine, but double blue is too difficult to make with so many Swamps. Cards such as Pondering Mage, Curse of the Swine, Didn't Say Please could be cut.
Lords help to make your Zombies bigger by increasing their power/toughness (anthem) or giving them all other abilities. The four budget Lords (Captain, Accursed, Baron and Cemetery) are a good place to start to make upgrades. Captain and Lord are each $1 or less making them excellent first upgrades on a budget. Captain, Undead and Midnight are Zombies who give you value when your Zombies die and your Zombies are going to die especially from board wipes.
Buried, Ransack and Parting help to put creatures into your graveyard to use Scarab's activated ability with. Buried and Parting can tutor for and put Wonder into your graveyard which can be a win condition with Zombies giving them all flying. Parting can do both for Wonder, putting it into your graveyard and tutoring for an Island if you need it to activate it.
I offer more advice. Good luck with your deck.
10 months ago
Cards that are over $1 that are auto-includes:
- Mulldrifter , which can easily be cast for 3 mana if you blink in response to the evoke trigger;
Cards that should go in: - Twilight Shepherd - your creatures never die! - Phyrexian Ingester - BUUUURP. Also should go in Yasova Dragonclaw. - Displace is a cheaper Ghostly Flicker for creatures only. - Pondering Mage is a great 5-drop for this deck. - Master Splicer is a cheap thing to flicker to get an army.
Cards that should go in for redundancy if I have to remove Brago:
- Angel of Condemnation
- Momentary Blink
- Nephalia Smuggler or Mistmeadow Witch . Probably the latter for sweeper insurance.
- Spine of Ish Sah
- Mnemonic Wall
Mean: - Tempest Caller flickered means nobody else attacks.
Cards that are not going in:
- Deadeye Navigator : NO. This card is borderline bannable in EDH.
10 months ago
Thanks a ton for the feedback: there's some really great suggestions in there!
Pondering Mage - he's fun, but five mana is a little rough; I'm on the fence
Augur of Bolas - also a little nervous here because with not quite 1/5 instants/sorceries, it's not as reliable as the straight draw cards ... plus, I have to reveal what I draw (less ideal for say Counterspells)
Overwhelmed Apprentice - really neat ... but my opponents play a decent amount of graveyard recovery, so Millstone -ing them risks actually helping them ... but, even so, 2 mana for 4 Scry is definitely attractive; again, on the fence
Murmuring Mystic - how did I not know this spell existed?!? It's not quite a Talrand, Sky Summoner , but even so it's very nice, and I'm going to have to pick up copies for not just this deck but a few others; thanks :)
Vedalken AEthermage - already got 'em (he's just in a small "Search" section)
Disciple of Bolas also really great, need to get him
Finally, I own all four of those last cards, and it's funny because they were all in the final pile of cards which didn't quite make the cut, but almost did. Ultimately with all four it came down to "good, but other stuff seemed better" (ie. I couldn't decide what to take out for them).
Anathemancer - was very close (like card #101), but between the unreliability of not knowing how much non-basic land my opponents would have, combined with my general distaste for cards that only "do a few points of player damage" ... everything else just seemed better
Sage of Fables - is really cool, in combination with a small number of cards in the deck (eg. she's awesome for Cytoplast Manipulator ) ... but if I don't get those cards, she's just kind of weak sauce draw tech in a deck with 10+ stronger draw cards already
Tomebound Lich - I do need more defense, and deathtouch is great for that, but draw/discard is obviously worse than draw, and he doesn't fly which makes him a weaker defender
Dire Fleet Ravager - he seems great when I'm losing, but philosophically I try to build decks avoiding "I'm losing, save me" cards, and focusing more on "make sure I win" cards ;) It just felt like a lot of the time he'd be deadweight, plus he tends to speed the game up (life-wise), whereas this deck wants to slow it down and use time/life to build a "take over and win the game" board
So yeah, some really great suggestions in there, many of which I 100% agree with ... but with so many great wizards to choose from, finding what to take out to make room is always a challenge! :D
10 months ago
I like your take on it. Consider Pondering Mage as another card advantage wizard and Augur of Bolas since you run enough spells to reliably hit something as long as you copy him. Overwhelmed Apprentice is also sweet for the 2 mana scry 4 and opponents mill 4. Murmuring Mystic might also be worth a try. Vedalken AEthermage seems like an auto include since it lets you tutor any wizard. Another great card draw wizard / sac outlet is Disciple of Bolas and the life gain doesn’t hurt either. My finally suggestions would be Anathemancer and with Inalla’s trigger it can straight kill someone, along with Sage of Fables / Tomebound Lich \ Dire Fleet Ravager for added value.
1 year ago
Galecaster Colossus can end games if you have a few Wizards out, especially since his ability works around summoning sickness. Getting infinite flickers with your Naru Meha combo means you can bounce all of your opponents' nonland permanents by tapping her when she comes out.
I find Pondering Mage to be a great add to Naban not just for his ability, but also for his 3/4 body, which is pretty big for a Wizard.
Maybe replace Sage's Dousing with Wizard's Retort ? It matches Naban's flavor, and is a guaranteed counterspell. The card advantage of Sage's Dousing is nice, but it doesn't make up for being able to counter a spell, no matter how much mana an opponent has.
Sphinx of Magosi is $ cheap and gives you great mid-to-lategame card advantage and buffable Flying body all on an activated ability that doesn't require tap. Yes please.
1 year ago
Swan Song is a good commander staple.
Arcane Denial is a good cantrip counterspell.