Description

Introduction

This is a tournament-level combo control deck. It is designed to win in high-pressure environments by withstanding incoming disruption, suppressing opponents, and using efficient and powerful combos.

This deck is built around a network of synergies; the combos have interchangeable pieces, and the cards that support them can be used outside of the combo as general utility cards. Because the number of combo-only cards is minimized, the deck's resilience is increased, and the odds of drawing dead cards are decreased.


Soundtrack



The Primer



Feedback

Comments, suggestions, criticisms, and ratings are all welcome!

When recommending cards, please remember that this deck is tournament-oriented and must only contain the most efficient and powerful cards available. Please do not suggest casual or otherwise nonviable cards for inclusion. Also, please keep in mind that the deck is based around a network of synergies; combo-related cards should be useful outside of their combos.

Comments View Archive

Epochalyptik says... #1

Baral, Chief of Compliance

Thoughts?


@Silverf1sh: Krosan Grip is a meta call, yes. I generally don't run it because I don't think the split second is worth the extra compared to Nature's Claim, but if that effect matters in your meta, it's available.

I cut Glen Elendra Archmage because of its cost. If you find that your meta is slower and grinds games out, you could theoretically justify that cost in order to get a double-use counter effect.

January 4, 2017 11:53 a.m.

Emzed says... #2

You only have 17 cards that actually get cheaper from Baral (if we don't count hardcast FoW) and having cheaper spells that now cost mostly colored mana isn't necessarily great with the high number of colorless sources in your deck. It negates the effect of Thalia, Guardian of Thraben and similar stax cards partially, and it ramps towards Tooth and Nail (though not in form of extra lands, which you need in order to combo). The looting ability seems really sweet, and the combination of both effects does look attractive, but it's tough to evaluate without playtesting.

January 4, 2017 3:34 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #3

I wouldn't necessarily count as a downside the fact that the discount leaves me responsible the colored portions of mana costs since I would need to pay that anyway.

I'm more concerned with the fact that Baral doesn't do anything upon entry; I have to use it in conjunction with other cards. The cantrip is really what makes this a consideration, though. The question is whether a semi-reliable draw engine stapled to a reliable discount effect fills an important enough niche in the deck to warrant inclusion.

You're right, though. Not an auto-include; it would come down to testing.

January 4, 2017 6:26 p.m.

Emzed says... #4

Of course having colorless mana that you don't need to use on your spells isn't a disadvantage, i was just trying to say that the cost reduction also doesn't really matter in that case. The number of spells you get to cast in a turn might be more limited by your colored sources than by the total mana cost. Of course that doesn't happen all the time, it just factors into the evaluation of the cost reduction.
I also just noticed Baral's loot ability requires actual successful countering of a spell. If you are outmatched in a counterwar, he doesn't do anything and can't help to get you back into the game. Obviously, with the number of counters you are running, usually you should resolve a few of them, but Baral is certainly no Merfolk Looter that guarantees one activation per turn. But you can do some sweet things with redundant copies of Flusterstorm, targetting other copies and creating extra Baral triggers (if the Storm mechanic actually allows that, not entirely sure).

January 4, 2017 6:57 p.m.

Ishio says... #5

Epochalyptik: It may have been mentioned earlier, but digging through 114 pages of comments is rough. What's the overall opinion on Manabond keeping in mind Burgeoning and Exploration are in the deck.

January 5, 2017 2:16 p.m.

enpc says... #6

Ishio: Usually discarding your hand at the end of your turn is bad when you're a control deck. You could potentially generate a bit of value if Damia is in play but then you'd have no means of protecting her and she probably wouldn't survive.

January 5, 2017 7:13 p.m.

Ishio says... #7

enpc: I completely understand. I'm now thinking, even if it was a beginning of the game card, it'd be a dead slot in the 99 if not drawn in the early game. Thank you.

January 5, 2017 8:20 p.m.

Emzed says... #8

The newly spoiled Illusionist's Stratagem is more powerful than Ghostly Flicker since it allows you to draw your deck when comboing, any thoughts if that is worth one extra mana?

January 6, 2017 1:32 p.m.

BiggestJohn says... #9

I doubt the new flicker will work, in going infinite you HAVE to draw your deck and then some. The card draw is not a "may".

January 7, 2017 1:51 a.m.

enpc says... #10

By the time you've drawn your deck, you'll have enough mana to cast the rest of the combo pieces. That's not the issue. The issue is that outside of combo it's not as good as Ghostly Flicker. It only hits creatures, meaning you lose some good interactions with cards like Top or Cradle. Not to mention the extra mana makes it harder to cast.

January 7, 2017 2:19 a.m.

For those looking for a little more budget friendly ramp, consider Utopia Sprawl / Wild Growth / Voyaging Satyr. They synergize with Arbor Elf / Kiora's Follower. Cheers.

February 13, 2017 2:02 p.m.

ooop333 says... #12

Your land count is pretty high for competitive EDH. Have you considered dropping it down to the 31-33 range? If you do, you can also cut cards like Azusa and Burgeoning to add more control and diversify your wincons. Paradox Engine ramps pretty hard with cantrips and mana rocks, and it's an easy win if you get it out with Aetherflux Reservoir. Also, you should consider Leovold, Emissary of Trest and Windfall, and possibly Timetwister if you can get your hands on one.

February 16, 2017 5:40 p.m.

Emzed says... #13

ooop333 This deck uses Palinchron to win, so it really needs a good number of lands on the battlefield. With only 3 or 4 lands it's difficult to combo, that's why the land count has to be so high and why cards like Azusa are required.

February 16, 2017 6:47 p.m.

ooop333 says... #14

Emzed still, you should consider Leovold and wheel effects. alternatively, you can flash in Notion Thief the turn before you wheel if you'd rather hold mana for counterspells.

February 16, 2017 6:57 p.m.

@ooop333: This deck is designed to operate on a lands-matter win condition, where it needs a sufficient number of lands in play in order to make Palinchron or Peregrine Drake functional. Therefore, the deck leverages additional land plays and includes more lands than other competitive decks. I don't think it's productive enough to cut cards like Azusa, Lost but Seeking or Burgeoning given that focus. I haven't had great luck running a leaner land base, either, but I suppose it could be worth testing again.

For cards like Paradox Engine and Aetherflux Reservoir, consider the points I outline in the "Criteria for card selection" chapter of the primer. These cards are expensive and don't offer much to the deck in light of their costs. Paradox Engine is hard to fit into the deck's curve (the CMC 4-5 range is actually very difficult to play around) and its usefulness is only directly proportional to the number of mana rocks and land/permanent untappers I have on the field. Aetherflux Reservoir doesn't do anything particularly useful; it would only be viable as a win condition (as opposed to a utility card), and it isn't nearly as strong as the other win conditions in the deck.

Leovold, Emissary of Trest is a possible substitute commander. I'm less sure if it would be part of the 99; I have no experience using the card. If you have experience with it, please share what you've found.

I generally don't like cards like Windfall or Timetwister in this deck. There's a reasonable amount of draw power available, and I'm able to keep my hand full (or close to it) most of the time. I hesitate to spend at sorcery speed to refill my opponents' hands.

@Emzed: Regarding Illusionist's Stratagem (from an earlier comment), I think the limited targeting options and the extra cost outweigh the cantrip effect. I'm comfortable enough with the redundancy in the deck and with Ghostly Flicker's ability to fulfill its role that I can justify not including Illusionist's Stratagem. Others' mileage may vary, though; it's an interesting alternative/insurance policy for those who find themselves in need of one.

February 16, 2017 10:46 p.m.

Dankey says... #16

Has Foil been suggested? I feel a competitive, low curve deck like this would dream of having as many zero cost counter spells as possible. Also, this commander in particular is excellent at drawing the cards needed.

February 16, 2017 10:58 p.m.

I'm not sure if it's been considered before, but given the low count of Islands in this deck, I don't think there's enough support to make it work.

February 16, 2017 11:05 p.m.

ooop333 says... #18

Epochalyptik I don't know about you, but my competitive playgroup is almost completely made up of storm and combo decks that want to draw most of their deck in a single turn. Leovold is an include in pretty much any deck I make that uses the colors because he hoses their draw, works with wheel effects to twist their hands away, and replaces himself if removal is used on him.

February 17, 2017 11:33 a.m.

Silverf1sh says... #19

Epoch, when playing blue sun's for utility, what's the most you draw for? Do you simply leave open the room for counterspells in hand and go in, or do you have a set plan in mind?

February 21, 2017 9:55 p.m.

Silverf1sh says... #20

Epoch, when playing blue sun's for utility, what's the most you draw for? Do you simply leave open the room for counterspells in hand and go in, or do you have a set plan in mind?

February 21, 2017 9:56 p.m.

XxFATMAN247xX says... #21

Epoch, honest opinion on seedborn muse? I have this deck card for card, and i took out green sun's for Villainous Wealth, but thinking about adding seedborn and re-adding green sun's, what do you think?

February 24, 2017 11:26 a.m.

enpc says... #22

XxFATMAN247xX: Both of those cards are covered in the description under "omissions".

February 24, 2017 7:01 p.m.

Pyromancer999 says... #23

This has probably been asked already but why no one mana cantrips like ponder/preordain etc.? Don't they generally just raise consistency?

March 5, 2017 12:05 a.m.

budlaorf says... #24

Hey man, I really love the deck. There are a few cards you should consider adding to the deck though : Countersquall- Counters a spell like Negate, but also takes 2 life from the opponent. Havengul Lich- Brings back any of the creatures important to your combo by paying 1 colorless mana more. Oh, and he also let's you cast every creature from your opponents graveyards too (as long as you have the other colors of mana). Massacre Wurm- He's a big body that can sweep your opponents creatures and gain you life as well. Two other considerations would be Rakshasa Deathdealer and Beast Within.

March 7, 2017 12:52 a.m.

@Dankey: There aren't enough Islands in this deck to make Foil worthwhile. Foil is best played in mono-U or U/X decks, where more consistent access to Islands is likely.

@ooop333: I was wondering for a time what the deck would look like if I switched to Leovold, Emissary of Trest as the commander. Any experience in that field?

@Silverf1sh: It depends. I know that's not a great answer, but control decks must be played contextually, and there are really no hard rules for things like Blue Sun's Zenith. Generally, though, I'll use it as a utility card and leave /X up. I try to cast it when most players are tapped down to reduce the change of interference.

@XxFATMAN247xX: I don't play either of those cards for the reasons stated in the primer. They're slow, expensive, and not impactful enough for their costs.

@Pyromancer999: It's true that cantrips generally raise consistency, but they don't make enough of an impact. In a deck clamoring for tutors, counterspells, and ramp, I'm hard-pressed to include "throwaway" spells that replace themselves for only minor benefit. The amount of raw draw and tutor power, plus the shuffle effects, reduces how important cards like Ponder might be.

@budlaorf: This deck is built on a philosophy of efficient, high-impact cards. The cards you mentioned don't really jive with that.

Countersquall's cost is completely saturated, meaning I must pay to cast it (as opposed to /X). This deck wins through combos, and there's really little reason to ping people for 2 life in the interim.

Havengul Lich is expensive and doesn't really do enough to justify paying . This deck also does not play combo creatures ahead of time, so those cards are rarely in the graveyard. I feel I have sufficient alternatives and recursion in case they do ever hit the yard.

Massacre Wurm is very expensive for a board wipe in these colors, and, as I mentioned above, I don't really need to make opponents lose life before I combo. And because I don't really need to attack with this deck, the fact that it's a 6/5 is kind of irrelevant.

Rakshasa Deathdealer has no utility abilities; it's just a 2/2 that can attack or block.

Beast Within was cut from the deck earlier because it was expensive to cast. It's good enough that it could still see inclusion in variations of this deck, but I never cared for casting it.

March 7, 2017 8:34 a.m.

@ Epochalyptik Love the deck man!! your primer imo is one of the best i've read.

as to making Leovold, Emissary of Trest your commander, how often do you cast damia? i think that if it weren't for damia being the long-standing figurehead of the deck, I would recommend leovold as an alternate commander, as he can come out as early as turn 2 and dominate the board, while you pile up card advantage.

keep up the good work! i'd hate to see you stop editing this deck and making it even better!

March 14, 2017 10:40 a.m.

@VraskaTheCursed: Thank you.

Damia and Leovold are both good cards. Both have good abilities. My main problem with Damia all this time has been the cost.

Leovold certainly fixes that issue: it's not prohibitively expensive to cast (or recast). However, I do wonder whether the card advantage is comparable. The reason Damia was successful in this shell is that it replaces the cards spent building advantage in the first few turns. Having not tested Leovold, I'm unfamiliar with how much card advantage it actually generates.

March 14, 2017 12:17 p.m.

Emzed says... #28

I don't think you can count on Leovold drawing you the 3+ cards that Damia can usually provide (if she sticks). While he will draw the occasional card, and sometimes multiples, most of his power lies in his disruptive ability. Many combo decks don't work with him on the board, and you have plenty of counters to make sure he stays. This anti-draw ability also allows you to generate massive card advantage/disruption with wheel effects. His second ability, however, is great if someone tries to kill you with Tendrils of Agony or Brain Freeze (each storm copy triggers Leovold separately), since you can just draw cards until you find Flusterstorm or Mindbreak Trap.

March 14, 2017 1:57 p.m.

@ Epochalyptik i agree that damia's ability is grossly powerful and adept at refilling your hand. i think the way leovold generates card advantage is not just drawing you cards (although this he will certainly do), but by limiting your opponents' draws. because your opponents will NEVER draw more than 1 card per turn with leovold out, it's safe to say that you will always have more options, considering the amount of draw in this deck. another reason to consider leovold is that he is an active card-advantage generator as soon as he hits the field, whereas with damia you have to wait a turn to start reaping her benefits.

that being said, this deck could certainly perform incredibly well with both generals, it probably comes down to personal perference

March 14, 2017 3:45 p.m.

budlaorf says... #30

What about Heroic Intervention? It's a good cheap way to protect your permanents from a board wipe.

March 15, 2017 10:21 p.m.

@budlaorf: Unfortunately, Heroic Intervention is basically a more limited counterspell in that sense. It would be better to play an additional counterspell instead.

March 16, 2017 12:34 a.m.

budlaorf says... #32

Alright, one last recommendation would be Ertai's Meddling. It can really screw with your opponents timing, counters any counterspell for 1 blue and 1 of any color, and is one of the only ways I know of to at least delay a spell that can't be countered such as Emrakul, the Aeons Torn.

March 16, 2017 6:59 p.m.

@budlaorf wouln't a hard counter with a different drawback be better? if x is more than 1 it just is worse than Counterspell or Arcane Denial, considering the amount of mana fixing in this deck. plus Delay is a better version, except for uncounterable spells of course

March 16, 2017 7:22 p.m.

enpc says... #34

If you were going to run another counterspell, I would have thought that Unsubstantiate would be the next in the list as it doubles as creature removal.

March 16, 2017 9:12 p.m.

Dankey says... #35

Would it be viable to stick a Leovold in the 99 of this Damia deck? I know it technically doesn't fit into any of your requirements, but it's nearly guaranteed card advantage on top of disrupting your opponents tempo. You're already running enough counter spells to protect it. It doesn't seem like it's diluting your deck to the point where it slows down your gameplan.

March 19, 2017 4:49 p.m.

SurpriZe says... #36

Leovold is an interesting consideration, however, his first ability disrupts the main win condition for this deck, as your opponents will not be able to draw more than one card during your turn, forcing you to find ways to deal with your own creature during or right before the combo-turn. So I believe it's counter-intuitive to play him in this deck at all.

March 20, 2017 4:10 a.m.

very true - didn't even realize that. that's too bad, leovold would have been beast in this deck

March 20, 2017 6:25 a.m.

Well, generally you would attempt to draw your own deck to maximize the options you have in hand, then start eliminating opponents. Going that route, you'd more than likely have a way to bounce or otherwise remove Leovold, Emissary of Trest before attempting to combo someone out of the game.

March 20, 2017 9:07 a.m.

Epochalyptik, I've been using Leovold, Emissary of Trest since it was released in my deck, absolutely love it I find it gives me a great advantage, However, be wary of clones as clones of leovold flat-out shut damia down until dealt with.

March 20, 2017 10:12 p.m.

budlaorf says... #40

I'm not sure if this has been suggested yet, but how about Defense of the Heart? Great way to play your Deadeye Navigator+Palinchron wincon on turn 4 or 5.

March 23, 2017 11:57 p.m.

enpc says... #41

budlaorf: Check the omissions section of the primer. There's a write up about why it's not run.

March 24, 2017 4:07 a.m.

Silverf1sh says... #42

You might try adding Reality Shift from the Maybeboard. It could be that as Prime Speaker Zegana is my general, it feels very consistent drawing my library to hit the palinchrombo, Eternal Witness, Forbidden Orchard, and Reality Shift. but I find that since having it in there, I have been relying on it as my win con even over the typical blue sun's, venser attrition, and otherwise. Not to mention, it's a sweet utility card as is. I tend to use it to pop Linvala, Keeper of Silence and the like outside of the combo.

March 26, 2017 12:23 a.m.

MEAT_TORNADO says... #43

Silverf1sh, Krosan Grip totally is meta dependent. I agree with Epochalyptik it's usually not worth it. Especially in my meta where people love morph creatures, and Voidmage Apprentice can counter a split second card

March 26, 2017 7:06 p.m.

Emzed says... #44

Any chance of including Thought-Knot Seer? It's a decent disruptive card and a solid win condition: Flicker it to make your opponents draw their decks. If you stack everything correctly, there are very few ways to interact, even if they draw their whole deck (Time Stop and Summary Dismissal aren't exactly cards you need to play around, but Brain Freeze could become dangerous, as could a way to play Tendrils of Agony at instant speed).
If you have no trouble finding BSZ every time you go infinite, you don't need the Eldrazi as a finisher, but otherwise it might be a decent back-up.

April 3, 2017 9:11 a.m.

Dankey says... #45

Summoning Trap for counter spell heavy metas? It costs zero while digging 7 and possibly plays a win con for free. Who knows, it might find the combo card you need.

Or is it better to draw a 2 mana counter spell that you may not be able to afford casting?

April 8, 2017 11:48 p.m.

Ishio says... #46

Dankey: Summoning Trap might fit certain metas, but in the case of this deck, it's high of a possibility to be a dead card. with damia out, you can essentially draw in your win con, with that card in hand. Or you could just never get it's trigger. In my opinion, it's just not efficient enough for this deck.

April 9, 2017 10:46 a.m.

Dankey says... #47

A big reason why I brought it up is because a lot of people tend to wait for you to cast your commander to use their counter spells and removal. Without being able to bring Damia out long enough for your upkeep to trigger, you're not getting enough tempo that you otherwise could get. Worst case scenario it digs 7 for 0. I think it could be justified if you're seen as a potential threat in a 3 or more player game. 1v1 it may be a different story.

The fact that it's not guaranteed to do more than bury 7 cards to the bottom of your library is probably a good enough reason to not play it. Although I personally like the dig effect, maybe you have enough tutors where it's unnecessary. I tend to see it as a free cantrip.

April 9, 2017 3:29 p.m.

enpc says... #48

The problem with Summoning Trap is that it requires a very specific set of conditions to be useful. You have to cast a creature, have it countered, basically hit Palinchron with it and have the other half of the combo in hand.

While it's cute to use it as a contingency if Damia gets countered, a) the deck already runs a bunch of zero and one CMC counter spells to protect her, b) the deck runs Cavern of Souls to stop her from getting countered and c) you'd be better off just running a wheel like Timetwister to give you more momentum. Or Dig Through Time which potentially costs 2 mana to hit any two cards.

April 9, 2017 5:42 p.m.

How does this deck stand up to stuff like Nath/stax?

April 11, 2017 7:43 p.m.

Wutkeks says... #50

Hi. Did you consider Zendikar Resurgent or Mana Reflection for ramp and to combo with Palinchron?

Also, how do you deal with simple faceaggro? Even if I'm not directly focused by, for example, Saskia, it still seems like I get a lot of hits in just because I'm the only one without a decent board.

April 12, 2017 9:13 p.m.

knight611 says... #51

So I have questioned Consecrated Sphinx. It feels like there are other draw sources that can achieve a similar outcome of drawing a lot of cards. I couldn't name any of them to be honest with you though. I am curious if anyone has felt the same at some point. Consecrated Sphinx is a 6 drop and paints a large target on yourself. While yes it can draw an absurd amount of cards and a 4/6 flyer. I find it very hard to devote a turn to it unless it happens on turn 2 or 3 and there is very little to no chance that it can be answered timely. Maybe I am missing something but it doesn't feel like "best in slot,"for lack of a better phrase, that it used to be.

April 26, 2017 4:37 a.m.

FLATSO99 says... #52

Have you considered Stroke of Genius? it seems to me that the 2 colorless and one blue would out way Blue sun's shuffle ability.

April 27, 2017 2:21 p.m.

@FLATSO99 in order to kill multiple players with his combo, he needs to shuffle effect so he can reuse Blue Sun's Zenith

April 27, 2017 11:29 p.m.

enpc says... #54

Hey Epoch, what're your thoughts on Timetwister? It lets you vomit your early game ramp into play and then quickly restock your hand. The graveyard recursion is also nice if you're forced to discard a combo piece / TaN for some reason.

April 28, 2017 12:57 a.m.

Please login to comment




Compare to inventory
Date added 5 years
Last updated 1 month
Exclude colors WR
Legality

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Cards 101
Avg. CMC 2.48
Tokens 1/1 Spirit, 1/1 Bird
Folders EDH, EDH, edh ideas, Awesome EDH, EDH, 6. Funnihilator, Brilliant, EDH Decks, Other People's Decks, EDH Stuff, See all 472
Top rank #2 on 2012-08-19
Views 262771

Revision 59 (1 month ago)

+1 Unsubstantiate maybe

See all