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The spoils of the Commander 2019 product led to the rise of K'rrik, Son of Yawgmoth to the levels of cEDH. Whether it be the thrill of playing Suicide Black, Mono-Black Reanimator, or using Phyrexian mana all the time, K'rrik has something to offer to everyone. Join us as we take a deep dive into the pocket of fast time occupied by the new Phyrexian legion. Perhaps this time we can finish off Urza...


We aim to prey on a world full of hunters.


The deck has a "proactive" playstyle, as in it is always forward focused on the combo; and it uses its interaction primarily to keep its own plan in tact. It has early lines if you power out K'rrik and hone in on them, but it is very okay with preying on the shortcomings of other decks and players at the table, capitalizing on misplays, and waiting out the countermagic wars. Versus popular Tymna + X choices, K'rrik stands to be a fantastic attacker and blocker, due to how large he can become at a relatively low cost. This allows us to use value spells as combat tricks, while furthering our game-plan. Realistically, the deck will aim to win between turns 3-5 in most pods, but it is happy to go later if it can preserve its life total.

Resolving Buried Alive or Doomsday is a great way to setup the win for the game, and we can follow through with Razaketh tutor chains, Chainer, Dementia Master loops, and Aetherflux Reservoir laser beams.

Synergy with K'rrik himself unites the combo lines, making things mostly mana-less, and fully maximizing the resource that is our life total. We need not worry about producing infinite mana, and can really focus on generic mana in costs for this reason.

The primary win condition for the deck is via the resolution of Buried Alive , from here we have multiple piles that can be made to win the game, all of which involve K'rrik as the combo-enabler. All of the piles are assumed to start at the lowest life possible, with only K'rrik on board, having 3 opponents, and using Reanimate to bring back the starting creature.


To save some time and space in the further explanation of each pile, we will be using a key to denote some running numbers:

  • Cyan Text = Net Life per Step
  • Purple Text = Running Life Total

Lowest Starting Life: 19

  1. Cast Buried Alive for the above pile: , -2, 17
  2. Cast Reanimate on Chainer: -7, 10
  3. Chainer ability for Gary: -9, 1
  4. Gary ETB, Devotion = 10: +30, 31
  5. Chainer ability for Carrion Feeder: -9, 22
  6. Scarifice Gary to Carrion Feeder
  7. Repeat Steps 3, 4, and 6

Worst Case Scenario: Someone read the entire card and has decided to try to destroy Chainer while attempting to loop Gary with Carrion Feeder . This leads to a few lines of play that require higher starting life totals post-Chainer entering the battlefield.


Scenario #1 - The Best Worst Case


In this event, Chainer has been targeted for removal prior to his ability being activated. The best way around this is simply stacking a Chainer activation targeting Gary in response to the removal. This requires you are at 10 life. If you are, great! You simply stack the activation over the top, let Gary's ETB resolve first, and then proceed to finish your instant speed loop over top of the removal.


Scenario #2 - The Almost Worst Case


In this event, Chainer has been targeted for removal in response to Gary being targeted with Chainer's reanimation ability. The best way around this (due to most reanimation being Sorcery-speed) is by stacking another Chainer activation targeting Gary in response to the removal. This requires you are at 10 life after your first Chainer activation. If you are, great! You simply stack an activation over the top, let Gary's ETB resolve first, and then proceed to finish your instant speed loop over top of the removal.


Scenario #3 - The Actual Worst Case


In this event, Chainer has been targeted for removal in response to Gary entering the battlefield. The best way around this is by stacking another Chainer activation targeting Carrion Feeder in response to the removal. This requires you are at 19 life after your first Chainer activation. If you are, great! You simply stack an activation over the top, getting Carrion Feeder first (going to 10 life), and then proceed to sacrifice Gary. After that reanimate Gary (going to 1 life as per usual), Gary ETBs, and then proceed to finish your instant speed loop over top of the removal.


Lowest Starting Life: 19

  1. Cast Buried Alive for the above pile: , -2, 17
  2. Cast Reanimate on Chainer: -7, 10
  3. Chainer ability for Gary: -9, 1
  4. Gary ETB, Devotion = 10: +30, 31
  5. Chainer ability for Razaketh: -9, 22
  6. Sacrifice Gary to Razaketh (tutor for Carrion Feeder): -2, 20
  7. Cast Carrion Feeder: -2, 18
  8. Chainer ability for Gary: -9, 9
  9. Gary ETB, Devotion = 17: +51, 60
  10. Scarifice Gary to Carrion Feeder
  11. Repeat Steps 8, 9, and 10.

  • Razaketh, the Foulblooded
  • Chainer, Dementia Master
  • Gray Merchant of Asphodel

Lowest Starting Life: 19

  1. Cast Buried Alive for the above pile: , -2, 17
  2. Cast Reanimate on Chainer: -7, 10
  3. Chainer ability for Gary: -9, 1
  4. Gary ETB, Devotion = 10: +30, 31
  5. Chainer ability for Razaketh: -9, 22
  6. Sacrifice Gary to Razaketh (tutor for Gravecrawler ): -2, -2, 18
  7. Chainer ability for Gary: -9, 9
  8. Gary ETB, Devotion = 17: +51, 60
  9. Sacrifice Gary to Razaketh (tutor for Carrion Feeder): -2, 58
  10. Cast Carrion Feeder: -2, 56
  11. Sacrifice Gravecrawler to Razaketh (tutor for Aetherflux Reservior): -2, 54
  12. Sacrifice Chainer to Razaketh (tutor for Culling the Weak ): -2, 52
  13. Cast Culling the Weak on Razaketh: -2, 50, +
  14. Cast Aetherlfux: -
  15. Cast Gravecrawler: +5, 55
  16. Sacrifice Gravecrawler to Carrion Feeder
  17. Repeat Steps 16 and 17 until you have an arbitrarily large amount of life, then shoot.

Aside from Buried Alive piles, many easy-to-assemble combos can be utilized. For example:

Although these aren't instant speed win-conditions, they are still relatively slim and all of the pieces are either utility or overlap with existing lines. These all also fit nicely into the next portion of our plan...

Doomsday was a very easy include for the list, as the piles built themselves with already obvious includes for the deck. In Mono-Black, cracking the pile in the most difficult thing to do; and for this, we use pieces like Bolas's Citadel , Sign in Blood , our cycling cards, and permanents that draw cards. The piles listed below are organized from lowest to highest in terms of the necessary starting life total required (including a Cantrip ). Add 4 life to the starting total if you can generate a draw without paying life for a Cantrip.


Top Till You Drop


Lowest Life/Board Requirements: 32 life, K'rrik out,

  1. Cast Doomsday - 26 life
  2. Doomsday resolves - 13 life
  3. Cast a Cantrip - 11 life
  4. Use to cast Citadel - 5 life
  5. Cast Mox Opal/Lotus Petal - 5 life
  6. Cast Mana Crypt - 5 life
  7. Cast Top - 4 life
  8. Cast Praetor’s Grasp (targeting the Consultation player to get Laboratory Maniac ) - 1 life
  9. Use Mana Crypt + Mox Opal/Lotus Petal to cast LabMan
  10. Activate Top to draw a card and win the game

NOTE: This ONLY works in niche cases and is pretty much just a meme. If you can manage to win with this, either your pod is bad, or you’re a god.


Zuran/Sigil


Lowest Life/Board Requirements: 32 life, K'rrik out,

  1. Cast Doomsday - 26 life
  2. Doomsday resolves - 13 life
  3. Cast a Cantrip - 11 life
  4. Use to cast Citadel - 5 life
  5. Cast Zuran Orb - 5 life
  6. Cast Aetherflux - 1 life
  7. Cast 0-drop - 8 life
  8. Cast Leshrac's Sigil - 11 life
  9. Executing the Loop: Return Sigil to hand (lose 4, go to 7), cast Sigil (lose 4, gain 7, go to 13). Repeat for infinite life and kill the table with Aetherflux.

Zuran Orb can also be used to gain more life to protect yourself by sacrificing lands. Your 0-drop can also be Mox Opal to save 2 life post-Doomsday by making .


Carrion/Crawler


Lowest Life/Board Requirements: 34 life, K'rrik out,

  1. Cast Doomsday - 28 life
  2. Doomsday resolves - 14 life
  3. Cast a Cantrip - 12 life
  4. Use to cast Citadel - 6 life
  5. Cast Aetherflux Reservoir - 2 life
  6. Cast Carrion Feeder - 4 life
  7. Cast Gravecrawler - 13 life
  8. Executing the Loop: Sac Crawler to Feeder, play Feeder from grave for 2 life, net positive life off Aetherflux. Repeat for infinite life and kill the table with Aetherflux.

Dementia/Devotion Pile


Lowest Life/Board Requirements: 34 life, K'rrik out,

  1. Cast Doomsday - 28 life
  2. Doomsday resolves - 14 life
  3. Cast a Cantrip - 12 life
  4. Use to cast Citadel - 6 life
  5. Cast Gary - 25 life (this assumes 3 opponents)
  6. Cast Carrion Feeder - 24 life
  7. Cast Chainer - 19 life
  8. Executing the Loop: Sac Gary to Feeder, reanimate Gary with Chainer for 9 life, then gain your Devotion x # of Opponents in life to net positive. Repeat for a lot of life and drain the table with Gary.

Note: Zuran Orb can also be used before Gary in the pile if you need the extra life and have lands to spare. Just don't forget to float the mana before sacrificing them. You can use that mana to save some life on your first Chainer activation or hold it up for interaction in hand.

Vilis, Broker of Blood - This dude is one of our favorite cards in the 99. He is quintessential on turns you have pieces and want to dig for the other combo parts, or simply need to find answer. He is the Yawgmoth's Bargain cEDH needed, and K'rrik is his better half.

Blood Celebrant - Black Treasonous Ogre is pretty good.

Ratchet Bomb - Thanks again, Mjordan887! This has been a powerhouse versus a lot of the non-creature permanent problems that Mono-Black must deal with.

Imp's Mischief - See Counterspell . That is all.

Defense Grid , Contamination , and Infernal Darkness - These three fill essentially the same slot, and that is: keep us safe during combo turns.

Final Parting - Usually gets Reanimate to hand, and Vilis or Razaketh to grave for a quick set-up. This can also put Chainer in hand, and put Gary in the yard for a solid 2/3 combo pieces at the ready.

Zuran Orb - This is not just a 0-drop for Aetherflux plays! This is just like Rain of Filth for us! Rather than sacrificing lands for Black mana (which in turn saves life), this saves us life directly, meaning more !

Karn, the Great Creator - A wonderful one-sided Null Rod that can also bring back an exiled Aetherflux Reservior! What more could you want?

Buried Ruin and Sequestered Stash - Learning from those who play Godo , having lands that can recur/dig for combo pieces is pretty nice. Aetherflux is to us what Helm of the Host is to them.

Welding Jar - see the last bullet, and add Regenerate.

TIP - Please don't be afraid to use Black mana for things! Saving life wherever we can is important, and keeps us in the mid-late game for the best combo turns.

With no further ado, here are some of the worst best cards that fell just short of the cut line, and some honorable mentions that didn’t even make it to paper testing.

  • Massacre - This card was always a hard no for the Primer, as it didn’t fit well as a blind meta card. However, it has been listed in the sideboard due to it being an excellent meta-dependent choice.
  • Crystal Vein - Although Crystal Vein could provide when we needed it, it really fell flat with it’s inability to produce .
  • Lion's Eye Diamond - RIP to all-in-Doomsday. LED did not feel as good as it should have, but that’s the price you pay in Mono-Black. It enabled a DD line versus Consultation decks via Praetor’s Grasp, but wasn’t useful for much else.
  • Yawgmoth's Will - A tough cut on an accidentally flavorful card. Unlike other decks, we did not have the means to break our tutor chains and ritual plays enough to get to a win. This is due in part to our lack of top deck manipulation/card draw. YW, you will be missed.
  • Nighthaze , Aphotic Wisps , Street Wraith , etc. - These mostly dead cantrips were cut due to the list moving off of DD as the main win. They also provided little outside of the combo turns aside from cantripping.
  • Bazaar of Baghdad - Aside from the problem that many may have had with it’s price tag, Bazaar just felt bad. It was a worse cantrip for us, and we need our land drops to be mana producing ones or we will fall short.
  • Grim Tutor - Life is precious, and so is the ability to spend it in place of Black mana. These were the key reasons that this life-intensive sorcery speed tutor was ultimately cut.
  • Ashnod's Altar , Phyrexian Altar - We do not need sacrifice outlets outside the combo turn, much less ones we actually have to pay for. We don’t care that Gravecrawler can be sacrificed to Phyrexian to pay for it’s recasting from grave. You still need a Zombie on board, and Aetherflux to win. At that point, cut the chaff and use Carrion Feeder instead. As for Ashnod’s, we need the same board conditions as Phyrexian to even abuse this, and even then we are limited by our life total because we can’t even break even on casting. If we were going to include a second sacrifice outlet only to better enable Chainer loops, it would be Viscera Seer because it can be free.
  • EXTORT - This mechanic has been the bane of K’rrik’s existence since he was first spoiled. It does not work as well as so many people want it to. Assuming you have 3 opponents to drain, 2 instances of Extort will recoup the life lost for each (that we pay life for) in a spell’s cost. That is not even accounting for the production of colorless mana. To abuse that in K’rrik, you need Blood Celebrant to churn out mana for life. This means you need 3 times the Extort life per life spent on . This means that you need a lot of moving pieces to even get this started. From there, what happens when you need 3 opponents to be alive to keep abusing the Extort but 1 of them dies because they had the lowest life total when you started the loop? Oh, that’s right. The loop stops. Then you need to try to win another way if you haven’t gotten your other opponents low enough to kill them before you kill yourself by continue the loop in a life-negative situation. All in all, this interaction is not cEDH material, and should stay in 75% and below lists (if they really want it that badly).
  • STORM - Despite what a number of people have tried to do, K’rrik is not an effective all-in Storm commander. Mono-Black already has it’s challenges, and K’rrik can help us cut down on casting costs (making this easier on us); but there is no reason to run him over Sidisi, Undead Vizier for a Storm deck. Our list doesn’t use Ad Nauseam because winning at instant speed is tough for us. Sidisi at least has the benefit of using her Exploit trigger to kill herself and dig out AN, draw through to Shimmer Myr , and combo off. We don’t have that luxury with K’rrik, nor does he make things any easier, as most of the permanents that Sidisi drops to get her life total so high off of Aetherflux are low cost artifacts. K’rrik does not pay for colorless/generic mana, and therefore gives us no advantage over Sidisi. Our best bet would be to run a ton of 0-drop cards, and 1-drop Black cards, and hope that we don’t die or aren’t countered in the process of trying to storm off. If you are really still dead-set on building Mono-Black Storm, please check out this list: Sidisi's Reign Of Filth.

Conclusion & Thanks

I hope you enjoyed the Primer. K'rrik is an incredibly powerful commander that helps us break parity on/play through Stax pieces, cheat costs for combos and utility spells, as well as advance our game position as a predatory deck.

Thanks to several talented pilots and brewers that helped this along:

  • Jrax and Shifter07 for their reaninmator work and ferverous brewing.
  • Mjordan887, for his Stax-to-the-max approach to our favorite son of Yawgmoth, as well as the immense amount of spicy jank he brings to the table.
  • Mervius, for his insane contributions to the iterations of the list that got us here, and his heavy-hand in current brewing.

NEW!!! Here’s a budget version of the deck to help you get started: K’rrik on Crack [[Budget]]!


Enlist in K'rrik's army on Discord!


"Upvote this deck like the Minion you are." -Yawgmoth


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Revision 10 See all

2 months ago)

-1 Hope of Ghirapur main
+1 Ransack the Lab main
+1 Darksteel Citadel main
+1 Goryo's Vengeance main
+1 Victim of Night main
+1 Infernal Darkness main
-1 Supernatural Stamina main
+6 Swamp main
-1 Exhume main
-1 Dregscape Zombie main
+1 Welding Jar main
-8 Snow-Covered Swamp main
-1 Ransack the Lab maybe
-1 Darksteel Citadel maybe
-1 Goryo's Vengeance maybe
-1 Victim of Night maybe
-1 Infernal Darkness maybe
-1 Welding Jar maybe