BUG combo control
Designed to draw on the power and interactions available within BUG for incredible resilience, consistency, and brutality. Developed for a highly competitive multiplayer environment (tournament pods) but holds up extremely well in 1v1.
Primary Win Conditions:
There are far more interactions than that in the deck, but they are more dependent on board state in that they require more cards to be on the field and are easier to disrupt.
Sideboard: cards that are currently in the deck but are being considered for replacement.
Maybeboard: cards that are currently not in the deck and are being considered for inclusion.
Regarding My Meta
This deck is meant to be played in highly competitive environments. I play to win, and there are no house rules. It's by-the-books, tournament-level gameplay and the deck needs to be operating flawlessly at the highest level to survive. Therefore, I will not include any cards that lack power or synergy with the rest of the deck.
Please do NOT suggest the following cards. They are suggested all too often, and they aren't viable in this deck.
This deck is performing well, but I still feel that it should be faster and more consistent. Maybe I'm just greedy.
Speaking of greed, I have a list of cards to acquire.
This deck keeps getting faster and faster. Recent changes:
I had the opportunity today to play a couple games with this deck, and I also spent a good deal of time speaking with its codesigner. He has opted to drop many of the expensive counterspells and ramp cards in favor of their faster counterparts. He also runs a few mana dorks - a choice with which I don't necessarily agree. However, I more frequently play in multiplayer pods, so I face a higher risk of playing against sweepers.
I cut the filter lands for basics because, after talking with my friend, I realized they weren't always optimal. Running two of each basic allows me to squeeze a few extra uses out of my fetches. I also upgraded the basics into snow-covered basics in case I run into anyone using snow lands any Extraplanar Lens .
Finally, I dropped Survival of the Fittest for Lotus Cobra . I don't run enough creatures for Survival of the Fittest to really do what I need it to do, and Lotus Cobra is stupid with nine fetches, Nature's Lore , Skyshoud Claim, and three Exploration effects.
I'm considering dropping
In the wake of the RC's horrendous decision to ban Primeval Titan , I have made the following changes to the deck:
Dropping some of the cards I've come to question for some cards that hold the Promise of Power .
I'd like to fit Diabolic Intent in here somewhere. That probably means dropping a counterspell.
I havent found diabolic intent to be a high achiever. Its dependent on multiple conditions being fulfilled which makes it tricky.
I could see dropping Mental Misstep for Diabolic Intent . I actually really like that tutor because it replaces a not so good creature for a much better card for the situation that you are in. also, Mental Misstep is the most restricted counterspell that you have in here (i think).
Its dependent on both you having the tutor and a creature. Doesnt always happen. Having a dead card is bad times.
The intent is to sacrifice one of the utility creatures for the tutor, but I do need to protect Diabolic Intent itself; it's the kind of card opponents would love to counter in order to 2-for-1 me.
Is Spell Pierce all that useful with every deck (usually) having access to lots of mana? In 60 card decks drawing it too late is terrible, and obviously with larger decks you're even less likely to have it when it matters.
A couple of suggestions. I feel like a combo that requires fewer individual cards to win might be strong. Voltaic Key untaps mana rocks, and of course you can combo it with Time Vault . Did you feel that those cards were too weak individually to be in the deck?
I also feel that certain planeswalkers may be helpful to your attrition strategy. Vraska the Unseen kills anything you want her to. Liliana Vess is Vampiric Tutor on a stick. Nissa, Worldwaker and Garruk Wildspeaker , while more combat-oriented, can provide needed ramp in case you feel you don't have enough. If you want to go for the Key-Vault combo, Tezzeret the Seeker is great, and he still finds mana otherwise. Those are the ones I found to be at all relevant, but there are plenty of others obviously.
It might also run into the problem that Survival of the Fittest had. "Finally, I dropped Survival of the Fittest for Lotus Cobra . I don't run enough creatures for Survival of the Fittest to really do what I need it to do," (epoch). I never thought about the 2-1 business with that card, hmm. Also, could the argument be made for Riftsweeper ? you have five cards in the deck that exile your own cards (counterspell fodder, flashback, yawgmoth). it can also bring back exiled Palinchron /Deadeye Navigator combo pieces along with what you have exiled.
All of those are kind of high mana though. Although Tezzeret can come in and immediately get something onto the field which is very useful.
thispersonisagenius - Epoch has said that he doesnt like combo pieces that are useless on their own so I doubt that the artifacts will make it in. And as much as I love Tezzeret he doesnt have much to tutor up at the moment.
I generally do have a few creatures on the battlefield because I use several of my creatures for utility. I can justify sacrificing a Birds of Paradise or Azusa, Lost but Seeking to find a combo piece.
Also, Time Vault is definitely banned in EDH, so there's that.
There is no attrition strategy in this deck. The focus is shutting people down and comboing out as soon as possible. The only planeswalker that's remotely useful in this deck is Jace, the Mind Sculptor , which makes the cut because it's a toolboxing engine and pairs very well with fetches.
What do you think of Mirri's Guile ? It's a good 1-drop and works well with the fetches.
I would suggest adding Hurkyl's Recall and Tezzeret the Seeker . Hurkyl's Recall has enormous blowout potential and Tezzeret the Seeker can generate large amounts of mana quickly and tutor for other mana rocks.
I would cut Remand and Utopia Sprawl . Both these cards seem to week except in certain situations. Utopia Sprawl fails to be useful as a topdeck late game and Remand against combos but cannot adequately defend a combo against a dedicated attack.
Hurkyl's Recall is kind of underwhelming. Optimistically, it's a Time Walk . However, mana rocks are easy to play off of one another, so it really doesn't gain me too much. It's especially underwhelming in multiplayer, where I can only inconvenience a single opponent at the expense of two mana and a card.
Tezzeret the Seeker might have a shot if it cost 2UU, but at 3UU, it's too steep to fit properly into this deck.
Remand is strong because it helps delay critical plays in a resource-intensive format, and it cantrips. It's not always a hard counter, but it works in many situations.
@rathalos3000: I considered Mirri's Guile a while ago, but I opted not to include it because it doesn't actually draw me any cards. The effect is certainly good, but I have to ask whether it's good enough.
Another suggestion: I would rather play Toxic Deluge than Damnation , it costs 1 less and destroys even indestructible creatures and creatures with regenerate. And I remember reading, that lifeloss is not very important.
I haven't been able to test Toxic Deluge because I don't own a copy. It's on my list of cards to get.
Mill is a bad win condition in competitive decks, especially in competitive multiplayer. It isn't a solid win condition, and it should be considered a liability until it "wins" because it doesn't actually prevent the opponent from doing anything in the meantime.
Although suggestions are appreciated, please remember that this deck is a tournament-level deck that is designed to be as fast and efficient as possible. Suggestions should be tailored to a cutthroat meta and a need for ruthless speed and efficiency.
I would add more removal. Maybe Doom Blade . I would also add Chasm Skulker . It's great against removal, works well with your commander, and if left alone, can be very dangerous even if they have removal.
@biggestmtgnerd: Removal is one of the things this deck lacks, but I don't think Doom Blade fits the bill. Many important creatures are black. The problem is that there are so few kill effects I could run without being too limited, and those effects are generally pretty expensive.
Chasm Skulker is generally bad in EDH. It's expensive to cast, small as a threat, and doesn't have relevant abilities. Tokens, and combat as a whole, are unimportant in a combo-based format.
Has Storm Crow been suggested yet? If not, I'm gonna go in as the one to suggest it, because Storm Crow ends games just by hitting the table. It's more powerful than Palinchron and Deadeye Navigator in play with a blue sun in hand. So yeah, I'd recommend that card. Totally worth it for 2 mana.
In all seriousness though, I'm surprised Scroll Rack didn't make it into your list. I saw that you added it, but I don't see it in the deck.
I'm also wandering about the possibility of Entomb and/or Reanimate . Certainly, it has exactly three useful interactions with the graveyard (grab strip mine if crucible is out, grab whatever if you have yawgmoth's will or eternal witness), which makes entomb less than stellar, but it is a 1-mana instant speed tutor. I can see it being useful with a few more graveyard strategies, but I don't know if any of that is powerful enough to merit space in the deck.Reanimate can grab a fallen opposing consecrated sphinx, vorinclex, etc, and for 1 mana that's fairly powerful. That being said, I don't play competitive enough to know how often that circumstance is met, so I can't really judge the value of the card.
Do you need any graveyard hate? I'm truly surprised that isn't more relevant in competitive. against many decks stopping their combo is a simple as a tormod's crypt or nihil spellbomb. If you want to really do it well, you can go with a relic of progenitus. It seems like having at least one piece of graveyard hate would serve your deck well, but again, I don't know competitive EDH, so that could be completely wrong.
Also, just because it would be hilarious, would you please, just once, put in a knowledge pool and whip out the old knowledge pool/teferi combo against someone? That would seriously be the funniest thing ever. Just once. Just for the story. And make sure they know your deck.
Lastly, I would like to suggest Chimney Imp . This card is right up there with storm crow on the table of deadly cards, so I definitely think you should run it. It's kind of like tooth and nail in that it wins you the game immediately, but it has a lower mana cost.
@Traveler247: Scroll Rack was cut. It's a good card, but it's just not good enough in this deck. It had some applications, and the interaction with the fetch lands was nice, but it wasn't a necessity.
Entomb won't make the cut because my graveyard interactions are fairly limited.
Reanimate is certainly a good card, but it's also limited. I don't like having to depend on there being something useful in a graveyard when I'm trying to combo out on turn four or five. For the same reason, graveyard hate is not strictly necessary. Yes, there are some graveyard-based strategies, but counterspells work as a general-purpose answer to both those and normal strategies.
@Traps_and_Spells: DRS is banned in Modern. It's perfectly legal in EDH.
Looking at your maybeboard, i saw Trickbind . I thought that the cost was too prohibitive. Has that changed?
Trickbind 's cost has never been objectively prohibitive, I'll admit, but in comparison to Stifle , it's a little higher. It's a matter of testing whether the split second and full-turn shutdown is worth the extra mana.
You've had Worldly Tutor on your sideboard for a while now - have you ever given it a playtest? Also, have you given a thought as to what cards you would run in your wishboard?
Have you considered adding Cabal Coffers to go nuts with Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth . You could also add Crop Rotation to find matchup specific cards like Boseiju, Who Shelters All combo cards like Riptide Laboratory .
Cabal Coffers + Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth is certainly a strong ramp interaction, but Cabal Coffers is useless on its own in this deck, and I'd only ever want to play it if Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth were on the battlefield.
Regarding Living Wish in your maybe board: since there are no sideboards in EDH, are you able to fetch any legal cards you have with you?
aeonstoremyliver Most competitive metas that I have heard about institute a 10 card sideboard.
@Nigeltastic: Partially. The other major thing is that Mystical Teachings has flashback, which means I can use it to find Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir or Vampiric Tutor (Merchant Scroll can only find blue instants), then find Blue Sun's Zenith . Merchant Scroll is also a sorcery, which is not ideal. Demonic Tutor gets away with being a sorcery because it finds any card and has no reveal restriction.
@aeonstoremyliver: In casual EDH, wishes typically work the same as they do in casual 60-card (which is to say you can find any card from your collection). However, competitive EDH typically follows the EDH sideboarding rules (which allow you to pre-board after commanders are revealed, and allow you to wish only for cards in your sideboard).
I would suggest testing Pongify or Rapid Hybridization . I think they're the only two creature removal spells worth testing at this point. At the very least, you could use them to destroy utility creatures at the low cost of U. As for what to remove to make room for one of them, I'm leaning toward Mental Misstep . It may be a free counter, and a good one when it hits, but it really sucks when no one is playing 1cmc spells and it's dead in your hand. There will always be something to hit with Pongify , even if it's less than ideal, but the same is not true of Mental Misstep . It's still worth testing Mental Misstep as it could be more useful than I imagine (for example, it counters 22% of your decklist), but I don't foresee it staying in the deck long-term.
I was also wondering about Homeward Path . Is it common for creatures to be stolen in competitive games? I can't think of any creature theft card worth playing aside from maybe Gilded Drake . I don't know how often people try to destroy your creatures, but Yavimaya Hollow might be a better option than Homeward Path if you think creature destruction is more common than creature theft. I know you generally have counters to protect from either occurrence, but I think it's worth considering.
@TheCommonFig: I use Pongify and Rapid Hybridization in another one of my EDH decks, and I don't know how I feel about them in this deck. They're probably worth testing because I have little removal in this deck, and you're probably right about testing them over Mental Misstep . I will say, however, that Mental Misstep is key for countering many important counterspells as well as Sol Ring , Vampiric Tutor , Mana Vault , Sensei's Divining Top , Carpet of Flowers , and Exploration .
Homeward Path falls under the "nice just in case, but not a big deal" category. I was considering the idea of moving some of the less important utility lands to the sideboard and adding Living Wish to find them or an alternate win condition, but that idea never got past brainstorming. I think we kind of stopped discussing it.
@imarockyou: Because I can't miss the opportunity to use this response: it's largely intuitive. Sometimes I use it to find three free counterspells. Sometimes I find three tutors. It depends largely on the situation.
How about Submerge ? In my meta, there is usually one other opponent that plays forests. In response to a fetch or a tutor, it can be fired on a general or large opposing creature threat, causing em to shuffle it into the deck.
Part of the problem with not being able to regularly playtest is that I have a harder time telling what is and isn't viable anymore.
Is it your job to win before the Reanimator player sets up his/her combo? I'm asking this because i do not see a Scavenging Ooze
I don't often find myself in need of graveyard hate. Counterspells serve as a general-purpose answer to many strategies, including reanimator. They won't catch everything, but they're more flexible then running answers to single strategies.
My stance might be different if I were exposed to reanimator-heavy metas, but you also have to account for the fact that counterspells make up a significant portion of the deck and are therefore a widely available answer to multiple kinds of threats.
In your description, you mention Time Stretch, but it appears to be cut from the deck.
Good catch. I recently removed Time Stretch from this list in favor of some other cards.
Probably not. It's too expensive for what it does.
Lol, every time a good card comes out, i'll have to ask, You going to play Utter End?
Damia, Sage of Stone is one of my favorite Generals. I actually found this deck list and built it and have only lost less than a handful of times with it. This deck, probably more than anything else, influenced me to begin playing EDH over any other format. In essence, you're my mentor. Thanks for all you do Epochalyptik!
@bellator_sine_metuThats a cool story, i'm building the deck myself, somehow just in time with conspiracy and fetch reprints. How did u get Imperial Seal and other 100+ cards?
My advice is to acquire the cards in the order of relevance. For example, worry about the three on-color fetches,the shocks, and the ABUR duals before you splurge on the rest of the duals. Imperial Seal should be one of the final cards you acquire; the deck can operate without it, so focus on the necessities first.
ABUR duals are going to be very expensive for my blood, maybe when i get a job it'll be easier
so a no to Phyrexian Arena ? good draw engine for a low cost
@Asher18: Phyrexian Arena is just too slow. Although it may seem like a low cost for most EDH decks, the competitve meta is all about speed. You want to be playing 2-drops, not 3-drops. It's a good, consistent engine for casual and tuned decks, but it doesn't make the cut in this environment.
CMC 3 and 4 are also awkward for this deck. They don't fit extraordinarily well into an actual in-game strategy.
What does Yawgmoth's Will Exactly do for the deck?
I guess the more serious answer is that it allows you to recast ramp, tutors, counterspells, or even combo pieces during a crucial turn. Sometimes I'll Tooth and Nail into my combo, use Yawgmoth's Will to recast Tooth and Nail , and win that way. I've also used it to get extra landfall triggers for Lotus Cobra off of an Exploration effect. It's a situational card, so the applications naturally vary.
Adamant Negation is another card of interest, but it's not very useful until I have Damia or a combo piece out.
Murderous Cut seems to be inferior to Pongify . If its delve cost is met (which it won't always be, especially in the early early game), then it is marginally superior, but the token that Pongify generates is irrelevant 95% of the time. It's also notable that Pongify costs U, which you're more likely to have open at any given time, while Cut costs B.
I'm not so concerned with the idea of exiling cards from my graveyard, though. They're resources, just like any other. If I need to use them, I will.
What do you think about Submerge ? Is it not good enough or have you forgotten about it?
As I mentioned, I really don't have any opportunities to playtest this deck anymore, so it's difficult to say whether Submerge would make the cut.
Would villainous wealth be good as another thing to do with infinite manna?
Relying on your opponent's deck seems weak, but chances are that it will still work. If you want to be a jerk, you can most certainly do that.
@atgarnett: No. I want to win the game immediately with infinite mana. Villainous Wealth doesn't win the game, and it isn't playable without infinite mana.
Exiling all cards from your opponent's library with Villainous Wealth is almost the same as winning on the spot, but i agree, the card is far too situational to be included in such a well rounded control deck. There are plenty of ways to finish the game with infinite mana that are actually good cards, so no need for this one.
Villainous Wealth also doesn't guarantee a way to recur itself, which means I still need to deal with two other players.
You could recur it with Eternal Witness and blink it.
I could, but what makes it worth playing if I can do other things with that interaction? At that point, I would just find something that would do the job better and more easily.
what are your thoughts on Ad Nauseam ? on a turn with enough mana it can draw you into a tutor or combo piece, or can just refill your hand on an earlier turn for less mana than damia or if she is unavailable/ won't live until your upkeep.
also on your feb 9, 2013 update you mention that you don't personally like mana dorks, but there are currently a birds and an arbor elf in the list. do you not want MORE dorks, is this a shared list with your friend that he insisted on including a couple dorks, or or has your opinion just changed in the past year regarding the inclusion of a select few dorks?
my mimeoplasm deck is currently my best of 3 edh decks. since the other two are more casual, i've decided to try to make mimeoplasm more brutal. i'm looking to the webs for more information. unfortunately i just robbed my edh deck for some cube cards i was missing :-/
@shuflw: Ad Nauseam is too risky to justify. It's best when built around. In this deck, I'd be paying and potentially getting only a few cards. There are some very expensive combo pieces that would suck to hit with Ad Nauseam . And while I'm not forced to continue the process, I can't justify that high mana cost (especially at sorcery speed) without drawing many cards in return.
The February '13 update was a long time ago. I have since realized how beneficial mana dorks are in accelerating you into a fast win or even just achieving mid or late game positioning earlier. My friend and I have our own lists; what you see here is the variant that I play.
If you're looking to stay with The Mimeoplasm , I caution you against reading too heavily into my deck. The Mimeoplasm plays much better with reanimator strategies (for obvious reasons), and it's risky to diverge too far from that path. If you want to go the true combo route, I suggest looking into Damia as a commander instead.
thanks for the comments. i built the deck using damia as the commander, but i didn't build the deck specifically tailored to damia (tons of acceleration, dump my hand every turn to take advantage). as a result i found myself only casting her when i had nothing else to do in a game, almost as a last resort. I view The Mimeoplasm as the extra card in my hand at all times, and seek to exploit opponents' graveyards as much as or more than my own.
overall i just feel BUG are the best 3 colors in edh, regardless of building to fit one specific general, and now i want to make my deck leaner and meaner. since yours has proven successful (especially in multiplayer pods) i enjoy reading through some of the choices you've made. thanks for providing the deck and all of your previous decisions as a resource, in addition you your other work on this site.
also, some other cards that i find helpful in my list:
Bojuka Bog - lands are tight in my deck as well even though it isn't as finely tuned as yours. if you can afford to play one more nonbasic, and one that enters tapped, it's a searchable, recurrable, "free" source of sorcery speed gy removal.
Trinket Mage - this is my "pet" card in magic in general. in your list it tutors 4 artifacts and is a wizard. i created more of a toolbox in my list which includes some underwhelming choices but makes the mage more of a diverse tutor. mana rocks, top, Skullclamp (probably unnecessary durdle in a tight list), Nihil Spellbomb or Tormod's Crypt (gy removal, my meta has a lot of gy shenanigans), Expedition Map (tutor for a land tutor, durdle harder by mapping for Academy Ruins and then keep mapping for other utility lands), Executioner's Capsule (bad removal), and Elixir of Immortality (another pet card).
it's probably all too slow for a competitive format, but i looove talking about Trinket Mage :)
No problem. It's a pleasure to help someone else improve their game, especially if I can offer advice from experience.
The Mimeoplasm definitely allows you to explore some of the other strengths of BUG. For example, this deck doesn't really make any use of BUG's extensive reanimator suite. Overall, I find BUG and RUG to be the most enjoyable to play, although Bant and Esper are certainly very strong in their own rights.
Bojuka Bog is a good card, no doubt, but I don't like taking the risk of losing tempo. The effect is surprisingly not very relevant in competitive EDH because of the difference in tempo. Most graveyard strategies are either very fast or very slow, and Bojuka Bog is an inopportune choice for an early land. It's tolerable as a late game play, but the risk of needing it immediately and not having access to it immediately is pretty high.
Trinket Mage is kind of in the same boat. I strongly recommend it for many decks, especially Esper, but it doesn't really fit into this deck. 3 is an awkward spot on the mana curve, and the effect isn't good enough to justify the cost, in my opinion.
You mention that you play pongify in another deck. Are you planning on posting another decklist? I have really enjoyed building and playing this deck. I would love to see another one of your creations.
@Frank_Glascock: I don't. My other deck is a casual Rafiq deck built mostly with commons, uncommons, and bulk. There's not much reason to post it, especially since I don't plan on making the improvements most people would probably suggest.
@NateJH: EDH has an optional sideboard rule allowing for 10-card sideboards and pregame boarding.
Hm, I had always though it was a house-rule they encouraged. Thanks, the deck looks like hell of a machine.
Hey, just a few quick questions. How useful do you find Reliquary Tower to be (I can't remember if there was a post about this already)? Obviously there's the case with Consecrated Sphinx but ouside of that do you find your hand with more than 7 cards in it?
Also, as far as lands go which do you find provides better mana fixing and speed, checks (eg Hinterland Harbor ) or filters (eg Flooded Grove )? Obviously the ABUs are just outright the best, but also sit at $100+ a piece.
@enpc: Reliquary Tower is powerful enough to warrant inclusion. It's great with Necropotence and Sylvan Library as well as with Consecrated Sphinx (which you mentioned). Although it doesn't interact with Damia at all, it's still plenty powerful, and it taps for mana on its own (which is a big deal in this deck).
As for the lands, it's a difficult question to answer. The check lands have potential as sort of a "fourth cycle" -- an addition to the shocks, ABURs, and fetches. Without the ABURs, however, they are less consistent. The abundance of dual-BLT lands in this deck is what makes (or would make) them powerful.
I used to play the filter lands, but I cut them because I hated having to pay mana into them in order to get mana back. That requirement meant they weren't any good as independent sources of colored mana, even though they do offer strong filter abilities. They might serve you well if you have a less finely tuned variant of the deck, but I don't find them reliable and independent enough for competitive play in this list.
There's something to be said for casting CC spells more consistently with 6 (7 if you count Cavern of Souls ) colorless lands in the deck. I feel like you could safely cut Cephalid Coliseum for Hinterland Harbor or Flooded Grove , but that comes from not having played the deck much at all and not seeing how gaining no card advantage is a good thing.
Filters also have the added benefit of letting you actually play Cryptic Command , which is awesome.
@GlistenerAgent: Cephalid Coliseum is good because it allows you to filter three. I'll gladly draw three cards and throw the most irrelevant three into the graveyard. I've used this effect to capitalize on Eternal Witness 's and Crucible of Worlds 's abilities. Even when I'm filtering without setting up a great interaction, it's still advantage by selection. Card advantage needn't be measured purely by numbers. A player who uses a tutor to find a specific card has still generated advantage by doing so, even though the number of cards in his or her hand is the same afterward. The life loss from Cephalid Coliseum 's mana ability is typically irrelevant, and the fact that it taps for is a huge bonus.
Also, the filters don't justify or allow the inclusion of Cryptic Command . That logic is more applicable in 60-card formats, where playsets of a specific card can greatly increase your access to certain resources. EDH is a different story. The filters aren't fetchable, and they don't provide enough fixing on their own to justify their own inclusion let alone the inclusion of an expensive, saturated spell. This deck did, at one point, run both the filters and Cryptic Command , and I didn't find them to work as well as they should.
If you had a moment and were happy to I would really appreciate your thoughts on the land base for my deck until I can get my hands on some ABU duals: Damia Morgendorffer
I currently built most of this deck,( with a few proxies), I'm having trouble though, i seem to run out of a hand very quickly and am unable to win turn 4-5, Not giving up, i know i need to constantly practice. Any tips?
How do you feel about Courser of Kruphix ? A 2/4 body for 3 isn't bad, and then the extra mana and life never hurts.
It doesn't actually ramp you, which is why I don't think it would be that great in this deck. Gaining small amounts of life is almost useless, the 2/4 body isn't relevant, and I figure revealing the top card is as harmful as it is helpful.
@imarockyou: Did you make any changes? If so, what were they?
@TheGamer: I've answered this before, but the post was probably eaten by the last update. Courser of Kruphix doesn't do anything important. It's a nerfed Oracle of Mul Daya that doesn't actually ramp. There isn't really any "extra mana," and I'd rather be dumping lands from my hand anyway so I can replace them with Damia's ability. Also, the 2/4 body is irrelevant in EDH. If someone's going to kill my creature, its toughness is irrelevant. I almost never swing with anything, either.
Overall, a card has to provide solid advantage to make it into this deck. I can't justify playing cards that are only kind of good.
It seems like you kinda run out of cards until Damia can trigger. I was playtesting and it was really dissapointing to get infinite mana and not be able to win that turn.
Another wincon that I use in all of my blue decks is Capsize . It wins with infinte mana almost as easily as Venser and it definitely seems worth a slot.
@Karimzamrini: At no point should you ever be generating infinite mana if you don't have a win condition immediately available. You may be playing the deck incorrectly. Sometimes, you will need to tutor for a win condition or wait an extra turn. Don't launch right into a combo that will sit on the table, vulnerable, until you can do something with it.
Capsize was cut a while ago. Although it's a decent option with infinite mana, it's too expensive as a general utility spell. With the exception of Palinchron , all of my combo pieces can serve individually as utility cards. It's not a good idea to rely on combo-only cards (e.g. Exsanguinate ) or otherwise limited cards.
@Epochalyptik, still haven't forgotten about this deck! Anyways, i was just wondering about Spell Snare . It counters a lot of stuff (Counterspell suite, tutor suite, misc.). I feel as though it would do very well in here. It does do well in my mono blue v-clique deck, especially since it is so cheap.
I know you have not posted your Rafiq deck because you do not want to make the changes necessary to optimize it. I am struggling with building a Bant deck. A deck built by you, even budget, would help me focus my card selection. I wish you would reconsider. As far as Damia, is Time Stretch permanently removed from the list? I also have won off of being able to draw into a win con with the extra turns. In addition, it provides a fallback should Palinchron be exiled.
@miracleHat: I haven't had a chance to do any testing, so anything at this point is purely theoretical.
@Frank_Glascock: If you have a decklist up, I'll help you with it. Alternatively, I can answer questions about Bant theory and card selection (ask on my wall). I'm still reluctant to post my own list, though.
I haven't tested the deck since Time Stretch was cut. It has always guaranteed a win for me. However, it's very expensive, which means it's always a dead card in the opening hand and subsequent draws.
Villainous Wealth for how debilitating it is and its ability to nearly deck a player out with infinite mana and also give you enough advantage to win the game with its stolen cards? Once you have infinite mana leave a player with only a few cards left in their library, then just swing or combo out with whatever else you have stolen from them or have out on the board. I do like the deck and I'm unsure of how worth it is for Villainous to be included but it seems powerful enough, especially with infinite mana combos.
@8BitNecromancer: Villainous Wealth is a bad choice for this deck. When I have infinite mana I want to be able to win immediately. Villainous Wealth doesn't give me the win in multiplayer, and it isn't a viable utility spell. See comments #73-79.
Also, please link cards when you suggest them
Treasure Cruise isn't really worthwhile. I'd need to delve all seven to get the insane advantage it could theoretically offer, and I generally don't want to exile that many cards from my yard. The lands are useful because of Crucible of Worlds , and the nonlands are useful because of the other recursion effects. I could probably justify delving for three or four by mid to late game, but that doesn't really make Treasure Cruise any more attractive than something like Jace's Ingenuity .
@Epochalyptik, I made no changes to the deck. The deck Has soo many choices and sometimes idk when to set up or not, or to play this or not...I think it'll come to me with more playtesting
If you like, I can walk you through the deck on Skype or something. I've already done that with another user. Basically, field any questions you have and I'll do my best to answer them.
You'll definitely get use to the deck over time if you think about your choice and how the board state should (and does) affect them. This is not an easy deck to pick up and learn, but you can get the hang of it.
Still a bit confused on how Villainous Wealth does automatically win in multiplayer, especially when another strategy you named to win the game is milling them out with an infinite mana Blue Sun's Zenith . If you have infinite mana couldn't you leave an opponent with just one card left in their entire deck, leaving you to play literally every single card in their deck at once, allowing any number of combos in their deck, any number of creatures in their deck, and almost certainly taking a player out of the match? In the games I've tested with decks similar to this its almost always won the game. Just confused and looking for clarification more than anything. Its by no means a perfect card or overpowered but as a killing blow its brutally effective.
I guess the Rafiq deck will forever remain secret. Have you ever considered a deck tech video for Damia?
I can't automatically assume that whatever I hit with Villainous Wealth will win the game, even though it might. Blue Sun's Zenith is a guaranteed win even in multiplayer because I cast it on myself first, then set up to kill all the other players. Blue Sun's Zenith also recurs itself. Furthermore, Villainous Wealth is unreliable as a utility card outside of combos. It's not exactly the kind of thing I'd want to sink mana into during a regular turn.
I've considered doing a deck tech for this deck, but I don't really have the technology available to me.
I would be interested in a deck walkthrough, Sweet making a deck tech would be better as you can do it for everybody at once and not individuality, Is it possible to update the deck/list on MTGSalvation, that list is pretty outdated and in the process you can explain all your pics and everything you took out
Yeah, the MTGS thread is woefully out of date. It actually lost its primer status because I haven't been updating it.
Either way, I'll keep an eye out for opportunities to record a deck tech. However, I don't know if any will arise. Worst case, I guess I can do a voiceover on static screens (I have a decent mic).
Either way, if you're interested in a one-on-one walkthrough, let me know how to reach you. I have Skype and TeamSpeak.
One of your older replies addressed the question of what you do if Palinchron gets exiled. You said you have alternate combo options if that happens. Now that Time Stretch has been removed, what are those alternate win conditions?
Lots of comments on this deck... TL;DR
Dude, your up votes are at 333. What happens when they hit 666? We should make this happen and sac many goat tokens.
So.... for the hundreds of dollars spent on mana, you'd think it would be pretty safe against getting mana screwed...? My brand new deck that I just put together with cards lying around (Red/White/Black) beat this deck in a playtest by turn 6, overkilling by 7. I would suggest running WAY less counters unless you add more blue mana to garauntee them having mana to actually go off. I Didn't draw any blue mana until drawing Windswept Heath on turn 3-4 and fetching some.
You mentioned "I decided to drop some of the slower and more situational cards to add a major boost to my ramp package. The deck now regularly gets to turn three Damia." However, I fail to see how you are regularly getting 7 mana on turn three when it wasn't until turn 6 I drew Mana Vault raising the potential mana from 4 to 7.
I would suggest adding more mana generation/ramp, or cutting the XUU/XUUU cards, or some of the absurd amount of counters you have unless either A: you really need that many counters, or B: you splurge a few $ on some nice Island s to allow them to be cast.
I have playtested this deck a few times going out to the 6 turn mark or until I got damia out to get a feel for much mana is really getting out, not bothering with casting counters/removal etc simply trying to ramp as fast as possible, here are the results:
7 (turn 6, 5 colorless)
3 (turn 6. 0 colorless)
9 (turn 3, able to play Damia)
7 (turn 5, able to play Damia, granted no removal on Azusa, but I picked land over counters with Divining top)
**No mulligans were used, Simply restarted the playtest**
Based off of the 4 runs I gave it, you sir are very lucky if you are getting Damia out turn 3 regularly.
I just don't understand how this is so highly rated, I understand the power once you can get past turn 5-6, but it crumbles instantly to anything before you get Damia out. Which is the main point of my confusion as to how this wins under extreme stress.
@Frank_Glascock: I certainly have fewer of them, unfortunately. The deck relies more heavily on Deadeye Navigator than I'd like, but I can sometimes pull together an alternate win condition even if either Palinchron or Deadeye Navigator are exiled.
@The_Gru: Sorry, but if you're stuck on 4 mana at turn six, you're either playing the deck incorrectly or getting screwed by the playtester. I almost never fail to get Damia out turn three or four. Not to sound arrogant, but I can only take others' playtesting experience with a grain of salt. Playing someone else's combo-control deck is radically different from playing a deck you built yourself and have been playing for years. It's especially difficult because you don't get the overall tempo of the game when you're trying to solitaire or 1v1 test a control deck.
Part of the deck's design is to prevent it from crumbling, even without Damia. That's why I run so many counterspells - they're necessary to stabilize the game. I'll delay Damia a turn if necessary in order to prevent someone from generating too much advantage.
Generally speaking, if this deck crumbles at all, it's because the entire table (by which I mean three other players, almost all of whom are playing blue in any given game) are focusing me from turn one.
Epochalyptik, would you think that in some situations, the one extra mana for Trickbind would be worthwhile over Stifle ? Stifle works great for countering most triggered abilities, but I feel that with many activated abilities, the opponent will more often than not have enough extra resources and mana to activate the ability for the effect they desired. Trickbind prevents any abilities from that permanent being used at any time that turn, which could be huge. And the split second guarantees its resolution, not to mention they couldn't activate the ability in response. The difference between one and two mana for a counter spell is big, but so is the upside of Trickbind .
I run Stifle in my current EDH deck because I pulled one in Conspiracy, but I always consider replacing or even adding a Trickbind . I've been having this debate with myself for years, but I want to hear what you think, in your EDH meta.
@vishnarg: I really don't have enough recent playtesting experience to say with certainty that one is better for me than the other. Both are very good cards, and both have applications. I chose to include Stifle because the majority of combos rely heavily on triggered abilities, so I could justify the cheaper spell. That's not to say that Stifle is or always will be better, though.
If Palinchron gets exiled what are your win cons? Locking the board down with Deadeye Navigator and Venser seems like the only other option. Am I missing something? Do you remember what card replaced Time Stretch ?
One question I've had for a while, You say that you can hit 7 mana from turn 3/4 (I've seen this from runnign the playtesting) but I've always found that Damia is a high proirity target, especially if you have only 2 cards in hand by the time you're casting her.
So the question, even though you can play her by turn 3, do you still find yourself holding back a fair bit, just so you have enough counterspell mana to keep her on the board for a turn or do you just risk it (for the biscuit)? Obviously this is a very situational question, but its been a it of a problem I've been running into, especially since a lot of other decks I play against are "online" by the time I'm casting her.
The_Gru this deck wasn't built for 1 vs 1 If your play testing it grab 4 different EDH decks and play that way how you would in an actual tournament. (Even thought EDH isn't a sanctioned format.)
@Frank_Glascock: That's one of the things that needs to be tested. I don't have opportunities to play this deck, so changes like that are largely theoretical.
@enpc: It's very situational. If I perceive that there won't be any threat to her (or there's a low chance of there being a threat to her), then I'll go for it. Generally, if I'm casting her ASAP, I have multiple counterspells in hand to protect her just in case. The problem is that a large portion of my playtesting is in 1v1 matches, so the strategy I employ there is different from the strategy I employ in tournament pods. I won't just waste the 7 mana, though, so she does have to be protected in some way.
@Epochalyptik: Any chance you could make a budget version of this deck? :D 150-250$? I really like the commander and have been trying to build a deck around her but don't know how... :( Anyways awesome deck! +1 . Keep up the awesome work.
@RedRage: I probably won't design it myself, but if you want to design your own version, I'll certainly offer advice along the way. You'll have a better understanding of the deck's functions if you are involved in the process.
Do note, however, that if you cut the price tag to $150-200 (basically 1/20th of what the full list costs), you're going to end up making a lot of changes. You'll lose access to many of the more powerful lands and cards. Some have rough equivalents, some don't. I'll offer what suggestions I can, but you're going to need to modify the way the deck operates.
@Epochalyptik: Okay thanks! :D My play group allows 4 proxies, so which cards would you recommend as proxies?
It depends largely on what the rest of the deck looks like. For example, I wouldn't proxy Imperial Seal if you only have four slots; it'd be a waste of a proxy because it isn't the most immediately helpful card when you're on a small budget.
I would likely choose the ABUR duals and Mana Crypt because color fixing and ramp are critical, but, again, it depends on the list.
Of course, the ABUR dual recommendation is predicated on the assumption that you'd be playing at least the BUG fetches, but even that much may be in question given the budget. If possible, I recommend you play them. They make the deck a lot more consistent.
Someone asked how to make this more budget friendly. Here is my version of Epoc's deck I call it Mini-Crusher =P
especially with Deadeye Navigator I would HIGHLY recommend Mystic Snake as a 2 drop counter spell, and possibly just for kicks a Coiling Oracle but I would only tweak this a few ways to be honest. The snake to me is a must have as even without the bouncing its a 4 drop counter 2/2 for blocking play mechanic and this deck seems to highly need play mechanics
@Inces_Velus: Mystic Snake was cut from this deck a long time ago. The Deadeye Navigator interaction is alright, but you should never be playing Deadeye Navigator outside of your combo. Additionally, Mystic Snake costs . That's a lot of mana to tie up in a counterspell, and the 2/2 body doesn't really mean anything in competitive multiplayer.
well with the updates in cards at LEAST shove in Villainous Wealth ...PLEASE XD
No. As I mentioned earlier in the thread, Villainous Wealth is not good in this deck. It's too expensive to use as a regular spell because you aren't guaranteed to get value out of it. Plus, it's a sorcery. Therefore, it's only really playable as a win condition, and I don't like playing anything that's only viable once I reach endgame. The win conditions in this deck almost all function as regular utility spells outside of the combo, which is important because this prevents me from having dead cards and opens up possibilities when I might otherwise not have had any options.
Here's a question I've wanted to ask for a long time: What happens if they manage to exile Deadeye Navigator ? It seems like this deck lacks the ability to grind out a game like combo-control decks in other formats.
I saw that you dislike Treasure Cruise in this deck, so I have to recommend Dig Through Time . I feel like Dig is particularly good in EDH, where every card is different and thus the card gives you options upon options whenever you cast it. Delving six seems reasonable (obviously you can just cast it for 4-5 mana if needed), and it's also an instant to boot. As for what I would cut, Dark Ritual seems like the weakest link in the deck, as a one-time ramp spell doesn't seem impactful enough.
As I've said, the main problem with this deck is how dependent it is on Deadeye Navigator . Because I haven't tested it since my most recent changes, I don't know how the deck would play without it.
I've had trouble with the deck, so much that i'm thinking about scraping it. I feel like the deck has a hard time against blue and especially in pods. Maybe I'm not playing it right(that's what i think), Is there anything you can tell me that would help me? I would Skype if it helped me with piloting the deck.
We could arrange that. I've already done that for another user, and it went well.
I'm down to get that arranged, can you pm me or something of that sort
There's no pm system. You can email me your Skype name if you don't feel like posting it publicly. My gmail name is the same as my username (I don't write it out because I don't want it getting skimmed by spambots).
Oh, to address Dig Through Time : It's probably not worth it. It still has a high delve cost, and it doesn't offer enough advantage to justify that. Testing would tell us for sure, but it seems like it would be marginal at best.
Have you ever tested or considered Ad Nauseam as a card draw spell? Your average converted mana cost is rather low at 2.61 and in EDH you have some life to work with, so drawing 5-10 cards with it should be possible most of the time. Or do you think your lifetotal is too valuable to use it for this kind of effect? Of course it costs 5 mana compared to Necropotence 's 3, but being instant speed and the ability to see the cards you draw are certainly nice upsides. Necropotence is obviously able to draw a lot more cards if you are willing to invest the same number of lifepoints, but maybe it would be possible to run both of them?
@Emzed: Ad Nauseam isn't worth it in this deck. The cost is pretty steep, and there are enough high-CMC (4+) cards in the deck that I would likely only draw a couple of cards without seriously reducing my life total. I'm not wholly against using lots of life as a resource, but when you figure each card is probably going to cost me 2-4 life with some freebies interspersed, you're looking at a very high cost for some low draw potential.
Of course, it's worth testing. If I were in a position to do that, I would just to see how it plays out. A few people have suggested it now and I feel I'd be remiss not to see how it actually plays in this deck.
@atgarnett: There's no easy replacement for either Mana Drain or Mana Crypt because nothing else does quite what they do. You might include another low-cost counterspell over Mana Drain and another ramp dork over Mana Crypt and see how that goes.
Imperial Seal could be replaced by a number of other tutors. There are some blue tutors, such as Merchant Scroll and Personal Tutor that go unused in this deck. Your functionality will be limited by the search restrictions, though.
Basically, when you make replacements, you should be looking for ways to stay close to the CMC and functionality of the original cards. Sometimes that's not possible. Also, make sure that, if the changes impact the way the deck plays, you're aware of the differences.
I do not want go give off my email, but i will give my skype which is as follows josephyakhin, I'll be looking forward to your pm
|Date added||2 years|
|Last updated||1 month|
This deck is Commander / EDH legal.
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|Top rank||#2 on 2012-08-19|