|Commander / EDH||Legal|
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|Commander 2018 (C18)||Mythic Rare|
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Varina, Lich Queen
Legendary Creature — Zombie Wizard
Whenever you attack with one or more Zombies, draw that many cards, then discard that many cards. You gain that much life
, Exile two cards from your graveyard: Create a tapped 2/2 black Zombie creature token.
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Varina, Lich Queen Discussion
1 month ago
1 month ago
Olivia, Mobilized for War could too.
Varina, Lich Queen seems like an obvious option.
1 month ago
Hey man! I always liked zombies... it was one of my decks when I was growing up and still getting clubbed by my brother in Magic. I have some suggestions:
Zombie decks are, by nature, creature-based. Creature-based decks are, by nature, extremely vulnerable to boardwipes. Obviously, I don't know how your specific list plays, but experience tells me that this will be a problem. I suggest considering mass-recursion spells, the best of which for this deck is Patriarch's Bidding . After a boardwipe nukes your board, this card will get it back; or even if you don't get smacked with a Wrath of God , Patriarch's Bidding will reanimate creatures you bin with Varina, Lich Queen .
Path to Exile is a touch card to make work in EDH. In formats like this, people are all trying to do high-cost, busted things -- so ramping opponents is often actively dangerous. Additionally, one-for-ones are not the best in a format with three opponents (as having three opponents means you're facing three times as many cards). I suggest you consider things like Reckless Spite or Ashes to Ashes instead of your Path to Exile or Snuff Out , as these are invariably more efficient ways to kill threats.
Varina is blue, which means you have access to some of the best cards in the game. Though Ponder and Preordain may not look like much, there's a reason they're super-duper-banned in modern and Ponder is restricted in Vintage. These two give you a level of unparalleled card-selection, meaning marginal opening sevens go from ok to good really fast. Brainstorm is a similar card, though I am more reserved about it do to the potential of getting stuck with two dead cards on top of your deck (' Brainstorm Locked'). With your fetches, like Misty Rainforest or Flooded Strand , Brainstorm becomes very powerful; I advise you run it.
Card-advantage is real good in EDH. I realize that Varina, Lich Queen IS a sort of card-advantage herself (most good commanders are), but there's room for more -- especially since, sans other cards like Alhammarret's Archive , she is not card-POSITIVE. I see you're running Gravecrawler . Pairing this sucker with Skullclamp results in instant fun, as having the ability to ': Draw two cards' is kind of dumb. It is worth noting that this does not work if you have lords on the table who pump up the Gravecrawler 's toughness; however, with a sac-outlet like Carrion Feeder out, this problem is solved. Spell-based card advantage can also be very relevant. Painful Truths is a card I've been very impressed with in three-color black decks, and Fact or Fiction 's putting cards in your graveyard seems very synergistic with your Zombie theme.
I think you're running too many lands. Outside lands-matter strategies, I don't think most decks want to run more than thirty-two or thirty-three lands. Replacing a few with mana-rocks will speed up your deck, since mana-rocks are not limited by the 'one land-drop per turn' rule and can thus power out fatties faster than just hitting your land-drops would. With that same principle, it becomes evident that two-mana rocks are a lot better than three-mana rocks. I suggest you run a few of the following: Talisman of Hierarchy , Talisman of Progress , Talisman of Dominance , Dimir Signet , Fellwar Stone , Mind Stone , Prismatic Lens , Coldsteel Heart and/or the soon-to-release-and-drop-in-price Arcane Signet .
I may be stating the obvious, but if you can, you should include Demonic Tutor . It's like... really good.
1 month ago
so if you are constantly milling yourself good cards to add are cards like Jace, Wielder of Mysteries and Laboratory Maniac that way when you mill yourself you can at least have a couple of win cons for it, a great commander to help you out may be Varina, Lich Queen she lets you get some white in to have access to God-Eternal Oketra for the 4/4 black zombie tokens which are massive, and Anointed Procession which doubles your token production and builds that zombie horde we all dream of having
2 months ago
First of all, you should add the tag CMDR after Varina, Lich Queen in the Edit menu so it is identified as your commander.
Finally, I would swap 2 of your Signets for the 2 missing Talismans, and prepare to swap the third Signet for the incoming Arcane Signet ^^
3 months ago
With regard to cuts: If you want to run Zombie Master and Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth , you don't need Zombie Trailblazer anymore. Library of Leng is an interesting card, but I'm not sure it's good enough to merit an include; I'm assuming that it's meant to interact with Varina, Lich Queen 's looting ability. I just think there're better things you can do with the slot -- same goes for Desecrated Tomb . Their impact is marginal most of the time, and inserting more card draw or artifact ramp seems likely to be better.
I'm guessing Call to the Netherworld is meant to buy back cards while interacting with Varina's ability. I think running a to battlefield reanimation spell, like Reanimate or Animate Dead , would be simply better. Gravedigger and Eternal Taskmaster are similar cards I'd cut.
Ertai, the Corrupted is a card I think many people overrate. Five-mana is a very high cost, and cards like Daring Apprentice and Ertai, the Corrupted are worse than regular Counterspell s because your opponents know to play around the counter effect.
If you're running Phyrexian Altar , I'm not sure Ashnod's Altar is necessary. Including tutors like Demonic Tutor makes redundancy less important; similarly, including tutors would allow you to run just one Merciless Eviction or Austere Command effect rather than both.
3 months ago
SideBae This is some great advice! I appreciate all the help!
I like your thoughts on 2 mana rocks as opposed to 3 mana rocks. I'll be making a change there to increase the deck's speed.
You make a really good point about Approach of the Second Sun that I haven't thought about before. I'll most likely be cutting that in favor of another card that will help me with my deck's plan.
My budget doesn't really allow for the fast fetches but I didn't even know about the slow fetches! I'll be including some of those for sure. City of Brass , Mana Confluence , and Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth are some great suggestions too, I'll find room for them. When it comes to the land count, I'll try playing with different amounts, as I have some other decks with similar curve and a lower land count that can screw me sometimes.
I agree with your thoughts on card advantage, it's definitely very important. I've heard Varina, Lich Queen can produce a lot of card draw on her own, so I went a little light on the cards for that. After some playtesting I'll be able to see if I need to find some room for more card draw spells. One card in particular I was considering was Frantic Search , but I also like your suggestions a lot.
I agree that tutors are great cards, but I tried to limit myself with how many I was using when building this deck. In the past I've had decks with lots of tutors, and I found that it made my games always play the same. This time I wanted to try to cut down on that so I can see more of my deck and try to win with the tools available in the moment. This may also change after some playtesting too!
The Liliana's are great, Liliana, the Last Hope is a little out of my budget at the moment, but I'd love to find room for the other two.
I've definitely got my eye on Damnation and Toxic Deluge , I'd like to pick those up when I'm able to. My main reason for running the Anguished Unmaking and Utter End is the versatility they have. Any nonland permanent is really strong, and an exile is also great, due to the amount of graveyard-heavy decks in my playgroup. Another big reason for including them is to deal with problem cards that might be hard to deal with otherwise, such as Rest in Peace or Leyline of the Void . These cards can show up pretty often in my group, and I'm worried their effects would completely shut off my deck. But again, I'll learn more once I playtest.
I wanted to include some more counter magic, but my downfall in deck building is always deciding what to cut. There's always too many things I want to include in the deck, and nothing I want to cut. Any suggestions to help with this?
I do have access to both Narset, Parter of Veils and Ashiok, Dream Render , and I was heavily considering playing Ashiok in the early stages of deck building. I'll be taking another look at those cards.
Patriarch's Bidding is definitely on my list of cards to eventually get, I can imagine how strong it would be in a deck like this. I hadn't thought of Living Death 's interaction with Wonder , hopefully that won't screw me up too often!
Thanks again for your help, I really appreciate all the suggestions!
3 months ago
Not my win but we had a 4 player game where Varina, Lich Queen pulled out a win because the person playing Liliana, Heretical Healer Flip kept discarding cards from everyone’s hands so while the 4th guy kept getting into a lock with Lili player I was stuck trying to make coin flips work with Okaun, Eye of Chaos and Zndrsplt, Eye of Wisdom .
Long story short Varina just outvalued everyone since no one actually had cards to stop her.
Varina, Lich Queen occurrence in decks from the last year
Commander / EDH:
All decks: 0.01%