Read the Bones

Legality

Format Legality
Tiny Leaders Legal
Noble Legal
Leviathan Legal
Hero Legal
Magic Duels Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Vintage Legal
Modern Legal
Casual Legal
Pauper EDH Legal
MTGO Legal
Vanguard Legal
Legacy Legal
Archenemy Legal
Planechase Legal
Frontier Legal
1v1 Commander Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Unformat Legal
Pauper Legal
Commander / EDH Legal

Printings View all

Set Rarity
Commander 2017 (C17) Common
Duel Decks: Zendikar vs. Eldrazi (DDP) Common
Magic Origins (ORI) Common
Commander 2014 (C14) Common
Theros (THS) Common

Combos Browse all

Read the Bones

Sorcery

Scry 2, then draw two cards. You lose 2 life. (To scry 2, look at the top two cards of your library, then put any number of them on the bottom of your library and the rest on top in any order.)

Price & Acquistion Set Price Alerts

C17

DDP

ORI

Ebay

Read the Bones Discussion

Ulaemracosi on Budget B/W Rally the Aristocrats

1 day ago

About card velocity, where Duke.Fleed suggested Read the Bones or Night's Whisper I thought about Sign in Blood. It accomplishes the same thing as Night's Whisper, and has the added effect of having the option to drain them of 2 life. It's handy to have when you come up just a little short of lethal and it's also budget, costing less than 25 cents.

solarbeam on Black White Knights

2 days ago

You're very heavy on the 4-drop slot. I would recommend cutting the Approach of the Second Sun, since you should be trying to win by bringing your opponent's life to zero. Anointed Procession is cool, and can be powerful, but it relies on you following it up with other cards. THough pricey, this should be History of Benalia as this card does not depend on being followed up by another card and produces more Knights on its own.

Instead of Murder, Fatal Push or Path to Exile are better choices. For more budget options, Declaration in Stone, Go for the Throat, Cast Down, Anguished Unmaking, and Oblivion Ring are good options.

You should be running 4 of the Dauntless Bodyguards in the maindeck, they should not be in the sideboard. You're going to be wanting to swarm the enemy in a flood of chivalry as fast as possible, and a few amazing 1 drops can help you out that way. Accorder Paladin, Knight of Glory, and Sigiled Paladin are all great 2 drop knights that help you out in attacking strong and early. Knight of the White Orchid can act as ramp, but is also a decent beater.

Always Watching is an amazing anthem effect! Plus if you run this, History of Benalia, and removal like Oblivion Ring, or Banishing Light, you could run Blood-Cursed Knight!

Mirran Crusader is extremely powerful and you should definitely be running 4 of this one.

Vona, Butcher of Magan is really cool and can give you an answer to nearly anything, and she helps pay for herself with that lifelink.

Sorin, Solemn Visitor may not make a knight, but that uptick can be a crushing blow for you enemy. Gideon, Ally of Zendikar makes knights and can drop an emblem to give your team a permanent buff.

You'll also want to use some of black's card draw capabilities, since card advantage is definitely white's biggest weakness. Don't be afraid to spend a little bit of life to draw some cards with Dark Bargain, Read the Bones, Night's Whisper, Sign in Blood, or Damnable Pact just to name a few.

You should also definitely be running lands like Isolated Chapel, Concealed Courtyard, and Godless Shrine

For your sideboard, cards like Duress are very important if you're running black, I would recommend running 3-4 of these in your sideboard, since you have no other hand disruption. Celestial Purge is pretty popular, as is Timely Reinforcements. Vraska's Contempt and Anguished Unmaking can help you deal with opposing planeswalkers, and Unmaking hits any troublesome non-land, Rest in Peace, Stony Silence, and Zealous Persecution are very strong sideboard options as well.

Let me know if this was helpful or would like to know some of the reasoning's behind the suggestions!

Duke.Fleed on Budget B/W Rally the Aristocrats

3 days ago

ooh, I always love me an aristocrats deck. I know it is budget but I've got some suggestions (within budget) that can help improve this deck.

I used to play an aristocrats deck with Return to the Ranks. It was pretty medium. What I found out was, you will end up killing your op in one big turn where you sac everything and bring it back and sac again. It was never a little at a time because if I did it slowly, they would just remove the key pieces or win before I had a chance to bleed them out.

So with that in mind, here are my suggestions: recursive cards like Bloodsoaked Champion and Reassembling Skeleton are good for grinding, but not for explosive turns. What is best for that is cards like Doomed Traveler (which you have) and Hunted Witness (which you need). The reason they are explosive is because, without needing extra mana, they double each sacrifice. So with two Blood Artist effects in play and a recursion card you only need 2 dorks and a sac outlet (albeit that is 5 cards) to deal 19 dmg.

The other thing is, looking at your curve, you have way too many 2 drops. This was also a problem that I faced when I played the deck, it means that on turns 1 and 3, you often get stuck with extra mana laying around. Here is what I would suggest: replace Go for the Throat with Tragic Slip and replace Bloodthrone Vampire with Viscera Seer. That way you shift the cost towards 1 drops and can get cards out there faster.

The last thing, which I did not figure out, was card velocity. I could never get enough cards out fast enough. Many people suggested Collected Company but I wasnt about to pay 4 mana for two 1/1s. Others suggested ways to dump cards into my graveyard like Satyr Wayfinder and the like. But this exposed my deck even more to graveyard hate. Either way, all of this requires green which you don't have. So if you find yourself running out of card velocity, maybe try Night's Whisper or Read the Bones or a similar effect to that.

Hopefully my ramblings help. Let me know if you have any questions, and if you like my suggestions: check out my podcast all about brewing decks at mtgcoldbrew.buzzsprout.com (we're also on itunes and spotify)

P.S. cut those tap lands, you dont need the life gain and they will just slow you down.

SynergyBuild on Demons Punish Me

1 week ago

Love the deck, but because Dark Ritual and Archfiend of Despair isn't legal in Modern, what do you think of in running Night's Whisper or Read the Bones to draw more into your other cards?

stellarstormtrooper66 on Tey is cray

2 weeks ago

I can tell just by looking at this briefly that this build has been improved over time as it looks very refined. As I am not experienced with this commander, take my comments with a grain of salt as you are more of the expert here.

I wonder if you could make use of more token producers - specifically ones that make at least 3 1/1 creatures at a time in order to use Teysa's first ability on demand if she's the only creature in play. Cards that come to mind include: Sengir Autocrat, Benevolent Offering, Increasing Devotion, Entrapment Maneuver, Spectral Procession, Martial Coup.

I think you could explore morbid a little more, some cool ones include Skirsdag High Priest, Reaper from the Abyss, Tragic Slip. Tragic Slip could improve your mana curve by replacing Murder.

I think more card draw effects would be nice. I'm very surprised to not see Mentor of the Meek in here. I would argue that Read the Bones is strictly better than Painful Lesson. But overall I would consider adding a few more, some that come to mind that play well are: Damnable Pact, Skeletal Scrying, Blood Divination, Altar's Reap, Ancient Craving.

I think you could use more mana ramp. Besides mana rocks, you could take advantage of treasures with cards like Pitiless Plunderer.

Not sure if you've thought about focusing on strong cards that care about low CMC. Besides Mentor of the Meek, other cool cards could be added (some would even interact with Teysa): Unearth, Sun Titan, Reveillark, Citywide Bust.

Fun cards that come to mind that you could add:

Lastly, a few cards I think could possibility be cut for any of the above (I am often eager to cut high CMC cards btw):

  • Treasury Thrull - a good effect I'll admit, but I'm just not thrilled with the 6 CMC. If reviving creatures is your main goal, something like a Hell's Caretaker's effect for less mana might be better.
  • Voldaren Pariah  Flip - at her cmc with that effect, I think I'd rather run a board wipe instead
  • Vizkopa Confessor - looks like a fun card, but I don't like the CMC.
  • Profane Command - I don't know that this should be cut, but I'd encourage you to really ask yourself which modes you typically use because you might be able to get a card with the desired mode for less mana. If X spells are a way for you close out the game, you could consider Exsanguinate or Torment of Hailfire.
  • Tamiyo's Journal - looks like a fun card, but idk about the cmc, requires a long game before providing lots of value.
  • Tainted Sigil - I've never seen this card before, does it pay off well? I just don't like that people can see it on the board.

Overall, very impression decklist - glad you rebuilt it. Eager to face it next week.

ByrdmanAK on Budget Meren

2 weeks ago

First things first: Spore Frog is an all star in this deck.

This deck looks like it wants to make tokens and sac them off. Carrion Feeder and Viscera Seer are great budget sac outlets. I’d also recommend Phyrexian Plaguelord since you can convert tokens into -X/-X to remove stuff. This is noteworthy because -X/-X effects will kill indestructible creatures where normal damage and effects that use the word “destroy” will not. Also note that if you are trying to destroy a God such as Erebos, he needs to become a creature before you are able to get rid of him. Since you have Zulaport Cutthroat, you should also use Blood Artist.

Now, you need tokens to sac off. Avenger of Zendikar is your best option. Hornet Queen creates a small army of deathtouch fliers. Mycoloth wants to eat all nonessential creatures so he can generate an army at the start of each of your turns. Mitotic Slime is als great with Meren since it lets you build experience counters and generate tokens to sac off. Army of the Damned is an army in a can and can be abused by tossing Eterbal Witness in and out of the graveyard. Ghoulcaller Gisa is a very good choice if you’re looking to sac off Avenger of Zendikar repeatedly.

Ramp is a cornerstone of every deck with green in it. Sakura Tribe Elder is good, but you want Rampant Growth, Cultivate, Kodama's Reach, and Explosive Vegetation. You cannot really abuse these with Meren unless you sac and reanimate Eternal Witness, but they are essential for making sure you get the correct colors you need when you need them. If you want to be cheeky, you can run Abundance as well to guarantee land drops when you need them or skip lands when you don’t need them.

Card draw is necessary here. Regal Force is a great follow up once you’ve made an army of creatures. Skeletal Scrying, Read the Bones, Night's Whisper. Don’t wince at the cost in life, 2 life here and there does not matter when you have 40 life.

Board wipes will level the playing field if you fall behind. Necromantic Selection, Decree of Pain, and Black Sun's Zenith are viable options here. You can wipe and rebuild faster than your opponents more likely than not, so pull the trigger if you feel like you are losing or falling behind.

Overwhelming Stampede is good, but you need more reliable ways of closing the game out. Overrun and Pathbreaker Ibex are very good, and you should move Triumph of the Hoards to your mainboard.

Elf0491 on Drana's Knights of Sacrifice (EDH MTGO 1v1 Rules)

2 weeks ago

A few comments. First, what in the **** is your meta where this needs to be a thing? I'm just...kind blown away that you would need to be absolutely this fast. Anyway, card suggestions:

Easy includes off the top of my head are Doomfall, Plaguecrafter (strictly better than Fleshbag Marauder), Phyrexian Obliterator, maybe Crypt Ghast for more mana, Glaring Spotlight and Arcane Lighthouse (lay down the hate on hexproof), and Sudden Spoiling (can't be countered)! Also, you can't play Sparring Collar in mono black.

What I think would be good idea: these are cards I think are solid, but might not be fast enough for you. The Eldest Reborn, Abyssal Gatekeeper, Shriekmaw, Phyrexian Scriptures, and Dread.

I also think some better card draw would be useful, and Phyrexian Arena isn't that great if the games are going very short. Instead, consider instant effects like Ambition's Cost, Ancient Craving, Dark Prophecy, Night's Whisper, Read the Bones, or Midnight Reaper.

I know you want everything to be cheap, but I'd recommend at least a few spells that can serve as bombs if the game gets to later rounds. Maybe something like Exsanguinate, Killing Wave, or Torment of Hailfire.

If you're interested in the combo, go for Mikaeus + Walking Ballista. :)

I also thought of Leonin Bladetrap, though that card isn't great...

Finally, quick question. In the description you mention equipment that grants deathtouch, but I don't see any in the actual deck. Is that still something you wanted to do?

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