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Cries of Despair (Competitive Budget 8-rack)

Modern 8-Rack Budget Competitive Discard Mono-Black



Instant (1)

Sorcery (1)

Enchantment (1)


Greetings and welcome to another deck in my Budget Modern Collection!

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To those of you who have never played 8-rack before, this deck is a mono black discard deck that is focused on getting our opponent's hand down to one or zero cards, and then winning the game with either The Rack, Shrieking Affliction, or a combination of the two, all while killing any threats our opponent plays once they start to top-deck.

To those of you who have either heard of 8-rack or seen builds of it, obviously playing cards like Lilliana of the Veil and Dark Confidant aren't budget, but are some solid upgrades to playing this deck.


Blackmail: Blackmail is a budget Thoughtseize that can only hit three cards, but it can also hit lands, something lots of discard spells can't do. You could also play Inquisition of Kozilek in this slot if you wished.

Raven's Crime: Raven's crime ensures that drawing a land isn't a bad thing, since this deck can operate on 2 mana, drawing lands is comparable to drawing dead action a lot of the time, raven's crime fixes that problem and ensures that continuous discard occurs.

Wrench Mind : The modern version of Hymn to Tourach Wrench Mind usually lets you discard two cards from your opponent, unless they are playing something like affinity or Lantern Control, in which case its usually just an off-curve raven's crime.

Funeral Charm: Funeral Charm is interesting becuase not only does it allow you to kill something like Noble Hierarch or possibly a Glistener Elf, but it also lets you discard at instant speed, which can often be the difference between winning or losing.

Smallpox: One of my favorite cards, smallpox allows us to cycle our opponent's turn 1 play, for example, they play a Glistener Elf or Birds of Paradise, you smallpox and both your opponent's land and creature are gone.

Delirium Skeins: A little rogue gem, Skeins is a card that sees no play in the modern world, and in our build of 8-rack, is often a game winning card. Since most people expect cards like Thoughtseize and thus try to keep their hand filled with roughly 3 cards, skeins tears up that plan by discarding their entire hand for 3 mana usually. Typically this isn't a problem for us, as we only aim to play our racks and kill.

Augur of Skulls : The only creature in this deck, Augur is a chump blocker with regenerate and hand disruption, and can easily stay back to block if it is needed.

Smother and Victim of Night: Our removal spells, they both hit virtually everything that is currently being played in the modern format, and are both cheap and always castable when playing mono-black.

Dakmor Salvage: A way to ensure that you never miss a land drop should you truly need one.

Swamp: We got basics.

Shrieking Affliction and The Rack: Our finishers and the namesake of the deck, these cards are what gives 8-rack such a powerful stranglehold over a lot of decks that are popular in the format, since many decks like Jund, Junk, Lantern Control, and affinity all want to empty their hand onto the field, and our racks punish them severely for doing so.


Duress: A way to deal with decks like Ad Nauseeum that play no creatures and want to goldfish you as fast as possible.

Geth's Verdict: A card strong against decks like Bogles, Jund, Infect and other decks that play few threats.

Ratchet Bomb: Sometimes we need to deal with non-creature permanents, such as Chalice of the Void.

Extirpate: Gets rid of combo pieces permanently.

Pack Rat: The secret sideboard tech to beat decks that play Leyline of Sanctity and shut us out of the game, Pack Rat grows and grows and grows, until your opponent is dead.


The sideboard I put in here is meta dependent, obviously tune your deck to suite your meta needs.


It should be noted that this deck doesn't have a lot of variance, as there are certain decks that this deck can't really beat, cards like Obstinate Balloth, Wisp-Leaf Liege, and Loxodon Smiter are examples of this.

This means that this deck is EXTREMELY meta dependent and shouldn't be taken to your local FNM if you know these decks will be there.

Other examples are decks that generate tokens or come back when they dies, decks that play cards like Thragtusk, Lingering Souls, Voice of Resergence, Kitchen Finks, etc.

Also, artifact heavy decks like Tron, Affinity, and Eggs are tough.

Also, Dredge is A TERRIBLE matchup, all you do is fuel their deck, and then they kill you, very simple process.

However, there are plenty of decks that 8-Rack is VERY good against, these decks are ones that run on very low resources to win the game. Decks like this include, Jund, Bogles, Infect, Storm, Izzet Blitz, UR Prowess, and decks that run dedicated discard and creature removal.


If you like this deck, and want to see more budget brews, hit the UPVOTE button at the top, it lets me know that my decks are actually reaching people.

Also, if you have any budget friendly suggestions for this deck, please leave a comment!


If you are a budget player and are looking for some sweet decks to play in modern, feel free to check out my profile @ Sargeras I have made a bunch of budget modern decks, and am always looking for feedback on them.



Exiled_soul says... #1

Liliana of the veil is obviously a powerful card that is hard to replace. I have seen Necrogen Mists in the place of LoTV in budget 8 rack decks before. Mists can be a huge power house and if you land more than one its bonkers.

December 11, 2016 10:12 p.m.

hamiam says... #2

Dope +1

December 12, 2016 12:14 a.m.

Baconbitsrgood says... #3

I've played 8rack for about a year, scrapped the deck cause it loses to Chalice of the Void if they drop it at 1 charge counter. There's nothing you can do about it. You're in black so you have no artifact removal.

However, this deck brings me back a little bit. It was fun to play until my playgroup boarded chalice. I remember all of those turn 2s that I had to concede. Good times.

December 17, 2016 12:41 a.m.

Snap157 says... #4

December 20, 2016 1:36 p.m.

SlimJim83 says... #5

Just one question, since you're in mono black, wouldn't Extirpate be cheaper financially? Or are you counting on the phyrexian Mana for a free cast?

Nice 8 rack, build, by the way. I love this archetype and you did a great job with it.

April 8, 2017 6:25 p.m.

Sargeras says... #6


Since this deck was made before the spike of Surgical Extraction, and has not but updated, yes, Extirpate would be more budget.

April 9, 2017 3:35 a.m.

SlimJim83 says... #7

Fair enough. I run my own 8 Rack and I thought that I was missing something. Thanks.

April 9, 2017 4 a.m.

Jewishman says... #8

Cry of Contrition would go well with your Augur of Skulls

April 16, 2017 11:36 p.m.

Sargeras says... #9

Jewishman: Raven's Crime serves the same purpose as Cry of Contrition, except we can cast it should we begin flooding out.

April 17, 2017 2:44 a.m.

Nordlys says... #10

As a dicarding deck lover and user, I feel free to post here. Hope you don't mind.First, I'll back my comment up by acknowledging you that I've built and played discard for many years way before Shrieking existed, and thus, I've commited the same mystakes as everyone (like trying Liliana's Caress and Quest for the Nihil Stone, for example) ...and no, I won't suggest those.

Good job with the budget deck, seems pretty legit.

I'm aware that you are aware of Inquisition of Kozilek being 3-4 usd is a budget possibility. And I do agree that a card like Blackmail is special because it can discard lands. But that job is for another star on your team; you've already got 4 copies of Raven's Crime (plus all the flood lands that will turn into more copies of it), Raven's got that issue perfectly covered.

Inquisition of Kozilek covers another issue, the one that concerns about disrupting the opponent's starting play. He'll never reveal his important 1-drops or 2-drops, because he needs them for his wicked plan. Inquisition is the hero that gives the villain a hard time or at the very least, buys us some time.

So, sumering up: I know Blackmail is a great card, but we (the users of this deck) need to get a pick at our opponent's entire hand to mock his best start. It's a luxury we cannot miss. Inquisition of Kozilek excells at doing so and can be backed up by one or two copies of Duress, Despise or Harsh Scrutiny, all of those great super budget options.

As far as removal, I pretty much agree with your choices. What I definitely add is a singleton Murderous Cut and maybe cut out a copy of Victim.

About Necrogen Mists which is in your "maybeboard" right now. I wouldn't even bother. 4 copies of Raven's Crime (plus two Delirium Skeins) are more than enough substitute for Liliana of the Veil's constant discard.

By the way, I love Augur of Skulls. I've played it even in non-budget, since Wrench Mind doesn't work around heavy artifact deck playgroups -which was my case for some time-. Delirium Skeins would have been a good substitute too, but I was running too many 3cmc cards at the time.

One last thing, I've just noticed you didn't sideboard any specifics against burn so I suggest considering either:

1- Syphon Life which also beneffits from Dakmor Salvage as well as Raven's Crime;


2- Nyxathid which can stand lots of direct damage, block those prowess little scum, and help killing your opponent since it's most likely that he'll tear our The Rack appart with their new toy Abrade.

Hope it helps!

October 2, 2017 3:06 a.m.

Nordlys says... #11

Oh and... forgive my english. Ain't my native language so I might have it all confusingly written (like this very sentence).

October 2, 2017 3:11 a.m.

Sargeras says... #12


Thanks for commenting,

  1. I really appreciate that you made an argument about why Inquisition of Kozilek is necessary and is pretty budget friendly, however, this deck is just a starting point for building a real 8-rack deck, real lists use cards like Lilianna of the Veil, Thoughtseize, Mutavault, and a variety of other pieces, all of which are needed to play this deck on a professional stage (As I'm sure you are well aware) and are pretty expensive. Anyone who really wants to build 8-rack will likely upgrade as they go anyway.

  2. This list was made a couple years ago, back when decks like midrange decks like Jund where still the top decks of the format, and I had no money. I know that sometimes fringe decks like this one win games, and with the format going back to top-down again, it's becoming more competitive. However with decks like eldrazi tron reigning at the top of the format with cards like Chalice of the Void the deck is still hard to win with.

  3. I do mention in the primer that the sideboard for this deck is tuned to my meta, and mine alone. Anyone who plays against specific decks should plan accordingly.

  4. Finally, I appreciate your support for the list, and I welcome the support of any other mono-black players who still hold my favorite style at heart.


October 3, 2017 9:46 p.m.

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Compare to inventory
Date added 2 years
Last updated 2 months

This deck is Modern legal.

Cards 60
Avg. CMC 1.59
Folders Budget Decks, deck, Modern, Budget, modern, Cool, Decks, Modern, 8 rack, Decks to build, See all 12
Views 4605

Revision 2 See all

8 months ago)

+2 Extirpate side
-2 Surgical Extraction side