Note: I don't play Standard so cards mentioned may not be directly applicable, so a standard-legal card that performs similarly would have to be substituted.
This also means that my advice might be horribly off-base, if Standard is vastly different than my local meta.
Chief of the Scale
is bad in an aggro deck. I had the WW solder version (Veteran Armorsmith
) in my aggro soldier deck, he was not helpful enough to justify the space he was taking.
** You don't have one listed, this is responding to the comment.
If you are going for aggro, you need more than 17 creatures. In order to keep pressure on your opponent, so every turn you either need to drop a creature or control the field (both at once is even better!).
With that in mind, Disowned Ancestor is a wasted slot. There's no point in attacking with it unless you can buff it up, which eats mana needed later. So you either can do less, or you have a wall. Neither increases pressure.
Same idea with Brave the Sands
- if you dropped that, I'd be happy. Vigilance is nice, but one of your creatures can't block at all, one starts out useless on attack anyway, and the others only have 1-2 health - you're probably better off allowing the damage through and trying to out-heal and out-damage it than losing the creature.
None of your creatures have tap-activated abilities, so it's not like Brave the Sands allows a combo either (attack, then tap to activate, win).
are okay, but...
1. Keep in mind that if i can Doom Blade (or whatever) an enchanted creature, then I've trashed two* of your cards for only one of mine.
* Bloodsoaked Champion is the only one of your creatures where this is less of an issue, since you can return him after death.
2. They are enchantments, so they're sorcery speed. They will not be a surprise and I can plan around them.
3. Nothing happens when your creatures take damage or block, so surviving hits is less important (e.g. + + ).
4. They don't really influence combat. Neither gives more than 1 damage, and Divine Favor only gives an extra three health on a creature that doesn't really care how much health it has.
You have few/no combat tricks inherent in your creatures - you have to lose cards in order to affect the battlefield, and with only 3 card draws, you're going to run out of steam rather quickly.
Cards like Defiant Strike or Guided Strike take care of both of those issues - it's an unexpected combat trick that cantrips itself. Alternatively, a creature like Deftblade Elite or Odric, Master Tactician allow you to control combat, and since that's your only wincon, you want to make sure it goes in your favor as often as possible.
Your creatures have very little health, but you have no first- or double-strike, despite having W where such abilities are commonplace. If I chump-block with some junk (or a 1/1 deathtouch like Typhoid Rats ) and both our creatures die, then I came out ahead - you want to win fast AND you have few creatures to lose. The lack of -strike abilities also makes all the +X/+0 abilities less effective: if I chump block then all the extra damage is wasted.
You also have no deathtouch, despite having a B deck. If I play some defenders that are juuuuust too big for you to kill, you will have a hard time winning. My deck expects to wait until later to win, and your deck can't get past my walls to do the early damage you require.
Deathtouch and a -strike is also a nasty combo.
As mentioned by danthek84, Obelisk of Urd costs too much, even with Convoke. If you had non-attack Inspired creatures (such as Pain Seer ) or same-turn ways to untap (such as To Arms! ), then it would be less-bad - you could Convoke to get it out, and then either the Inspired creatures get a free activation or you could untap and attack with the extra stats.
Another issue is that your tempo is mostly normal. Your turns will play out at about the speed that might be expected for a mid-range deck, not necessarily an aggro deck. You don't have the draw to surprise me that way, and you don't have creatures that grow (such as Curse of Predation
, Slumbering Dragon
, Rage Forger
) on their own.
Other than Chief of the Edge and Disowned Ancestor , your creatures only get bigger when you spend extra cards to do so. What happens after turn 3-4 when you have nothing in hand?
You also have very little control over the battlefield - if I put out a creature that I neither attack nor block with (such as Blood Artist ), then you can't do anything about it.
Anyway, i'm tired of typing.
You have too many 1 of each kind of card. Also I don't see a win condition.
By the title it sounds like you want to make a deck based around swamps. If that is the case I would say put in Squelching Leeches x4 , put in 2 more Nightmare . That should give you a win condition ( Big creatures due to lots of swaps.) Get rid of Carrion Crow because you don't need many early game air defense creatures if you have removal. So in that case add more removal. Since your going mono black Bile Blight should do the trick. Add 3 more. Also 4 Flesh to Dust is a little expensive take out 2 and add in 2Ulcerate or try Murderous Cut . For some early game defense against creatures add in 1 more Typhoid Rats the deathtouch makes it hard for opponents to attack you while you build up some swaps to get out your big guns.
As a nail in the coffin or a way to regain some of the life loss from things like Sign in Blood i would say you need some lifegain. Eternal Thirst works well with your creatures. Add 4. things like Festergloom , Caustic Tar are very situational and are not really going to help you much in the long run. The Convoke mechanic works in decks with lots of creatures. So far you don't have many cheap creatures to help convoke a big spell. I would say just remove Covenant of Blood and Endless Obedience . If you like the life effect from Covenant of Blood add in a couple Gray Merchant of Asphodel does almost the same thing but its a creature.
All of these are just my suggestions. I assumed by the deck title you want to focus on creatures that play around swamps. If that is not the case then when you try to make a deck think about what style of deck you want to do ( Devotion, Control, Aggro etc)
Hardened Scales works really well with Cruel Sadist . It would also work well with your Wall of Limbs , Ajani's Pridemate , Ajani Steadfast and anything that gets or gives counters. I'd definitely recommend Abzan Battle Priest You might want to sub one Typhoid Rats for 1 Sedge Scorpion just because your lands are equal but you black mana costs are higher, it'd just be a little more consistent too because if you have 2 of them and dont have the other mana you can play one either way.
I'm not sure of the deck's focus it looks a little out there with some cards like Titanic growth and marked by honor having no synergy. I'd like to see more focus on the counters with things like Ivorytusk Fortress to give all creatures vigilance, Abzan Ascendency or Abzan Charm to get the multiple counters but with additional bonuses and options. I'd definitely look into Abzan cards
nice looking deck, though am struggling to see the use for tormented hero, as nothing will trigger the heroic ability, i'd maybe consider throwing in a set of 1/1 deathtouch creatures like Typhoid Rats or Pharika's Chosen , that you can keep playing cheap using athreos' passive, and rather than Mogis Marauder, go with summat like Grim Guardian which will trigger itself and Spiteful Returned plus all your enchantments will trigger the guardians constellation ability aswell :)
I made a copy of your deck and have been tinkering. I tried to keep budgetary constraints in mind and tried not to deviate from your current build too much. this is what I came up with:
Sorcery (4)4x Commune with the Gods
A few notes: - Kruphix's Insight is pointless without enough enchantment creatures in the deck to justify it. To have it in the deck strictly for a dump is pointless & if it's for Nyx Weaver , you want that in your graveyard most of the time until you need to play him. - Despite it being your win condition, Empty the Pits is simply not a good card. Having a bunch of Deathtouch guys and Setessan Tactics is my favorite thing about this deck since the entire meta is creature based decks. It makes more sense to add more control, thus Murderous Cut . I really like that you use Despise (I REALLY wish we still had Duress !) so I'll probably take out Nighthowler for them in my build (plus it fits the budget better). - Nemesis of Mortals costs GG 99.9% of the time and a 5/5 on turn 3 is nothing I'm turning down. - Having 16 1 drop Deathtouch guys seems a bit excessive so I dropped it to 14 and might even cut 2 more. - I'm testing Reviving Melody & Gravedigger as both seem like they could be awesome. I'll let you know what I find.
Hope any of this helps or gives you some ideas. The downside is there is a really good non-budget build floating around that will outshine a budget build all day long but the point is to be able to be competitive & have fun and this deck does that in spades. Again, great idea! Keep up the good work!
+1 Spike Jester (my 2nd favorite card), Crosis's Attendant (because he looks like Ironman lol), Wall of Denial , Angel of Despair , Angelic Favor , Dream Fracture (my fav counterspell), Goblin Spelunkers (because they remaind me of lord of the rings), Hoard-Smelter Dragon (was the 1st dragon i ever owned), Grand Abolisher , Typhoid Rats , Gnat Miser , Patron of the Nezumi , Chittering Rats , Silent-Blade Oni , Fasting , Thermal Blast , Meditate and Putrefax (my fav card). I hope thats not to many :D
Essentially, my question is this. I have Herald of Torment in my hand, and Typhoid Rats on the field (just a cheesy example). Now Herald costs to cast. His Bestow costs . Do I have the option of paying the Bestow cost to immediately cast him as an aura? Also, say I hard cast him as a creature. Can I then later pay the Bestow cost to cast him as an aura? This is where I'm a little dicey on the rules.
For a Kaalia deck, you seem to actually be a bit lacking in the Demon/Angel/Dragon department. Drop Typhoid Rats , Pharika's Chosen , Frenzied Goblin , Xathrid Slyblade , Ruthless Ripper , Attended Knight , and Blade Splicer . These literally do nothing for the deck.
Add in Ob Nixilis, Unshackled , Ob Nixilis, the Fallen , Deathpact Angel , Balefire Dragon , Flameblast Dragon (especially if you want something to activate while attacking), Hellkite Charger , and Stormbreath Dragon just to name a few.
|0.02 TIX||0.02 TIX|
|Power / Toughness||1/1|
|Avg. draft pick||6.64|
|Avg. cube pick||10.36|
|Commander / EDH||Legal|