Tendrils of Corruption

Legality

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

Printings View all

Set Rarity
Duel Decks: Nissa vs. Ob Nixilis (DDR) Common
Commander 2014 (C14) Common
Duel Decks: Garruk vs. Liliana (DDD) Common
Duel Decks: Phyrexia vs. The Coalition (DDE) Common
2010 Core Set (M10) Common
Time Spiral (TSP) Common

Combos Browse all

Tendrils of Corruption

Instant

Tendrils of Corruption deals X damage to target creature and you gain X life, where X is the number of Swamps you control.

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Tendrils of Corruption Discussion

xyr0s on Help me fine tune this ...

3 weeks ago

Luminarch Ascension could also go in this deck.

Lifegain in black... Disciple of Bolas and Tendrils of Corruption, perhaps?

TheRedGoat on Black Shades

1 month ago

I like the idea of this for a casual build, but you really should change the name to "Cheap Sunglasses". If you're into adding flavorful cards, then you might try out Tendrils of Corruption, Corrupt, and Bubbling Muck. I would personally treat Drana as the place to drop for these, so that your "removal" is not tied to a permanent that can be disrupted in so many ways. Similarly, I would take away some instances of Pestilence since your life gain is so minimal really.

DemonDragonJ on Will WotC Keep Life Loss ...

1 month ago

In Dominaria, there were a number of black cards that dealt damage to players, rather than causing those players to lose life, as has been traditional for black. Black has, in fact, dealt damage in the past, but always when draining life, as seen on cards such as Corrupt or Tendrils of Corruption.

Mark Rosewater has commented on this matter on his Tumblr account, saying that WotC is testing the idea of black dealing damage instead of causing life loss, but I very much hope that black retains life loss, as that is an essential aspect of black and helps to make it distinct from red, so removing that aspect would be bleeding the colors into each other. Not only that, it is pure laziness by WotC to think that players cannot handle the difference between the two effects.

Also, there are important reason both in terms of flavor and mechanics for maintaining life loss in black: first, from a flavor perspective, being punched in the face or struck with a bolt of lightning is very different from blood slowly draining from one’s body; second, from a mechanical perspective, effects such as Furnace of Rath will multiply damage from effects such as Lightning Bolt, but not life loss from effects such as Soul Feast, and a circle of protection will prevent the damage from a lightning bolt but not the life loss from soul feast.

Thankfully, black cards in Battlebond are causing life loss rather than damage, so I hope that WotC realizes that black should keep that essential aspect of its identity. What does everyone else say about this? Do you hope that WotC keeps life loss in black?

xyr0s on A Dark and Stormy Night

4 months ago

Mmmm.... why play Unclaimed Territory in a monocolored deck with different creature types?

In the pile of removal, you could add a couple of Mutilate instead of a Vraska's Contempt and Grasp of Darkness. A bit more Liliana of the Dark Realms, and you'll hit your land drops every turn.

Black Knight seems random. Could be Geralf's Messenger (for resilience to removal), could be Gatekeeper of Malakir (for removal with legs), could be Vampire Nighthawk (for lifegain and deterring attackers)... or something else.

Do you have a plan for flipping Chalice of Life  Flip? Or is it just there to give you 1 life every turn? This might seem a bit abstract, but the lifegain from Duress could be a good bit better than either of the lifegain cards you're using, simply because it might remove a card from your opponents hand, that will cost you a lot more life than the lifegainers will give in any game where they don't come down right away. Or you could play Tendrils of Corruption in place of some of your removal, for even more swamps-matter, removal, and lifegain (in one bundle).

RingweMakil on Damned Devotion

5 months ago

APPLE01DOJ - I don't know. Yesterday, I could have written you an essay; today, I'm facing down Jace, the Mind Sculptor. I know nothing until further testing. I have rushed to bring back two copies of Liliana of the Veil to the list since the unbans, a card I had eschewed very quickly in my original construction of the deck, since it hardly favours the player drawing an extra card a turn; however, with the advent of Bloodbraid Elf and Jace TMS, opponents are now likely to be able to keep up with the CA of Phyrexian Arena, and as such, Liliana of the Veil is likely to be good again (even if the format is being overrun by lots of Bloodghast, Hollow One, and Faithless Looting).

However, I can offer a breakdown of how the creatures function in non-blue matchups:

a. Pack Rat:

The deck started with the set of Pack Rat. But that all in-strategy was soon found to be suboptimal - drawing multiple Pack Rats was unnecessary and rarely served any purpose; not to mention the speed of Modern means turn 2 Pack Rat is often too slow. As sweepers, Detention Sphere, and Maelstrom Pulse became common, and as Hollow One and Death's Shadow and Tasigur, the Golden Fang started to surface, Pack Rat lost some of its luster.

The natural question, then, if Pack Rat is slow and vulnerable, why play him at all? The answer: Pack Rat is ten cards in one card. Backed up with any kind of disruption and removal, he takes over the board and ends the game, quickly and unstoppably. Two activations are more than enough to put away games, and trading spot removal for Rats is a losing proposition. So in this list, he's gone from being a windmill early slam, to a lategame engine that turns dead land drops and discard spells into an army of creatures. Barring Path to Exile before a single activation is possible, Liliana, the Last Hope can always buy him back - one copy of the Rat, therefore, is ample.

Fringe case: Pack Rat allows for arbitrarily large amounts of devotion for Gray Merchant of Asphodel in boardstalls/against Lantern.

b. Desecration Demon

I've covered the virtues of this card in a post above - essentially, he's my Tarmogoyf, but he flies. Whether he functions as The Abyss or as a 6/6 unblockable, he ends games very quickly, and many a game against combo/Tron has been put away by disruption into disruption into Demon. Of the quick clocks available to black, he's one of the better ones. I believe the added utility to be well worth the extra two mana over Goyf (besides, far be it from me to argue against 6 6 fliers for four - speaking of which, Demon is almost always a strictly superior option to Abyssal Persecutor, since Persecutor requiring us to find an additional kill spell for our own demon while Phyrexian Arena ticks down/the burn opponent is topdecking is not a good feeling).

c. Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet

I cannot praise this card enough in any mono black midrange list. He exiles creatures, he gains life consistently, and he makes every removal spell in our deck a 2 for 1. Traditionally, efficient mono black removal has been weak to graveyard recursion such as Flamewake Phoenix, Bloodghast, Geralf's Messenger, Kitchen Finks, and so forth, since all these cards must be killed more than once, at no additional expense to the opponent. Thoughtseize and Phyrexian Arena is a painful combination, especially in a world of Lightning Bolt and Kolaghan's Command. Kalitas solves all of these issues beautifully, and with any removal spell stalls the board incredibly easily and well.

d. Drana, Kalastria Bloodchief

Okay, have you seen the art? If Drana were real, she'd totally be my Valentine.

Jokes aside, one of the issues I was frequently running into with the deck was the amount of time it took me to close out once I had stabilised. While all of my creature threats (Gray Merchant of Asphodel is basically a Corrupt, he doesn't count) end the game quite quickly, I just wasn't drawing them fast enough - my opponent would get the opportunity to find that Cryptic Command or Sphinx's Revelation, or get those last 2 Boros Charm. There is a delicate balance between disruption and pressure that must be maintained in all decks that are not pure control, and maintaining that balance required me to find another fast game-ending threat.

I considered running the fourth Desecration Demon, but the idea of another big dumb beater was not appealing. I wanted a powerful threat with intrinsic value attached to its kit, that could help deal with the board even when I was not drawing multiple cards a turn, and hopefully one that was either resilient, or dodged some of the common removal in the format (Lightning Bolt, Abrupt Decay, Fatal Push - although I was open to playing four drops, since consistently having revolt to deal with a whole myriad of four drop threats is difficult). While black has plenty of value three drops, none of them offered this game ending power, or were too easily killed - Nightveil Specter and Lifebane Zombie, for instance, offer great card advantage in specific situations, but don't really pack the same punch as something like a Desecration Demon or Pack Rat army.

Finally, I settled on Drana. There are a lot of powerful five drops in black with value built in (Bloodgift Demon, for instance), but Drana does something none of the others do - she kills things, turn after turn, while being able to attack in the air for huge chunks. In a meta with Lingering Souls, Dark Confidant and Young Pyromancer, Drana seemed like an elegant solution, and so far, she has far exceeded my expectations. I do not think I should consider running multiples of her, since she is quite expensive and can be killed for no value the turn she comes into play, but untapping with her can feel a bit like untapping after a Supreme Verdict to an empty board.

e. Gray Merchant of Asphodel

No Geralf's Messenger, no Phyrexian Obliterator; only 2 Gray Merchant. I do not believe the all in devotion plan is likely to ever become Modern competitive, for sheer want of interactive capability and card advantage - if you are playing a midrange list in Modern, you need lots of early interaction in the form of hand disruption and removal, a proactive plan to end the game with efficient threats, and ways to pull ahead on cards after both players have been stripped down to limited resources. Gray Merchant is an extremely powerful card, as good as or better than Siege Rhino if it drains for upwards of five; it swings races, it ends games, it doesn't care about board stalls, and for all intents and purposes is basically a Modern legal Tendrils of Corruption (not my quote - blame LSV. Then again, that man also calls Disciple of Phenax Mind Twist, so take these statements with several grains of salt).

But despite his inherent power level, Gray Merchant of Asphodel is a very high variance card, and can sometimes be Highway Robber. Removal in Modern is aplenty, and curving out into enough devotion for Gray Merchant to be good is not a reliable plan. Even when the traditional mono black lists do manage to implement their plan - Geralf's Messenger into Gray Merchant, for instance, after having gotten two or more of their creatures removed, despite being an overall drain for seven to nine, just lacks the power/speed to push through opposing Tarmogoyf, Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet, Grim Flayer, Death's Shadow - not to mention blue decks with their Cryptic Command and board sweepers and Sphinx's Revelation.

Gray Merchant of Asphodel in my list is therefore a card I'll often be discarding to the various discard outlets in the early game; using either the second copy or Liliana, the Last Hope's minus two to drain the opponent out if necessary later on. His being a zombie means he can be sacrificed to Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet either to simply grow the great vampire, or to be recursed with Liliana, as the situation calls.

I do not think running more than two of the card is likely to be feasible for Modern given the uncertainty of whether Merchant will be Corrupt or Highway Robber, and also given Merchant's relatively high mana cost; while it is possible that one is the correct number (and indeed, often in post board games, I do go down to one or no Merchant) at least in game 1, the proactive plan of discard, kill, kill, flier, smack, Merchant win is a very strong one. Having access to the second copy in case the first gets exiled and therefore cannot be returned with a future Liliana is also quite relevant against decks with Path to Exile and Pyxis of Pandemonium.

Despite Merchant's variance, I believe his power level and his ability to end the game on the spot through cards like Ensnaring Bridge and Witchbane Orb is not to be undervalued. In a deck with Phyrexian Arena and Ob Nixilis Reignited, every life point represents an extra card; while Highway Robber may be terrible, a five mana 2 4 that draws 4 cards on etb and drains the opponent for four is an absolutely phenomenal Magic card.

I would also like to point out the maindeck inclusion of incidental lifegain like Collective Brutality and Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet in conjunction with Gary makes most burn and aggro matchups extremely favourable.

While the creature suite has been carefully picked, and is constantly being chosen and rechosen and tweaked, the engine that enables this deck is Phyrexian Arena. Any interactive deck with reactive spells always runs the risk of its reactive measures not lining up well against the threats being deployed on the other side; Arena churning through the deck presents the critical mass of answers and threats to overwhelm the opponent, ensures land drops are made, and essentially in every regard dots the deck's i's and crosses its t's. With discard outlets like Collective Brutality and Liliana of the Veil to trade potentially dead cards for relevant spells early on, irksome draws with too many high cmc cards can still function smoothly and well.

raefgall on Orzhov Syndicate

5 months ago

Here are some ideas for the defensive options you mentioned:

Utter End and Anguished Unmaking are some good targeted removal options. Ashen Rider and Angel of Despair do the same thing on creatures.

Blind Obedience gives you another offensive and defensive option. Ghostly Prison, Sphere of Safety, and Koskun Falls work well together to tax your opponents to prevent large strikes.

For this type of deck, Exsanguinate can be another good aggressive card / finisher.

There are a couple cards that I would consider removing:

Contaminated Bond and Shadow Lance are very limited options, since they only effect one creature.

Castigate and Cry of Contrition only target a single player as well.

Carom and Shred Memory don't seem to do much. Tendrils of Corruption is an expensive, single target removal against one creature.

xyr0s on Whispers Of The Damned

5 months ago

A couple of card suggestions, if you want to turn your deck more controlling:

Gatekeeper of Malakir: a verdict, with a 2/2 body, for 3 mana. Played with kicker, it's already card neutral. If opponent has to spend a card getting rid of it, you are ahead by 1 card. Obvious weakness is that you don't get to choose what dies. Obvious strength - it gets around hexproof and shroud. Good synergy with Mutilate, where you play mutilate first, gets rid of all the small, scrawly creatures, and follow with this one for taking out a surviving, bigger creature.

Puff the magic dragon (Well, he was forgotten for a LONG time, and he never really got over it). Resilient, and if you play Duress you can often remove the few cards an opponent might have that could kill him. Also - surprise haste.

Tendrils of Corruption. In a deck, that cares about swamps in play, this is the removal/lifegain to go to. Forget about drinking up 2 life here and there in turn 2 - go for a real drink later instead.

And then you need some card draw. A lot of monoblack is 1-for-1 cards, and you need to draw ahead. Perhaps Disciple of Bolas? Ob Nixilis Reignited (now, that's a control-guy - both draw and removal)? Old faithful? Anyway, I imagine this could take the place of your Raise Dead-variants, since they give some card advantage (sheer numbers), and do not rely on already having drawn and lost really good creatures (raise dead is never better than the best creature in your graveyard). Palace Siege in khans-mode is a step in this direction too.

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