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No Friends? No Problem (Budget Infect\Wither)

Modern Budget Casual Counters Infect Mono-Black Multiplayer




No friends? No problem.

Those of you who have friends, will likely have less after using this!

This is a foundation to build from, but can be used as is.

With the above comment in mind, the main deck is locked but the maybe board has replacement cards that can be swapped in depending on your collection (example: Ichorclaw Myr) or improve the deck if you're not on a budget (examples: Skithiryx, the Blight Dragon & Inkmoth Nexus).

As many have pointed out Melira, Sylvok Outcast can be a problem if only using the main board. Swap out 1 Grim Affliction & 1 Virulent Wound for 2 Dismember (or something similiar).

Feel free to comment\suggest some potential upgrades\replacements and I'll consider adding it to the maybe board.

Also don't forget to read through the comments for past discussions; it's basically an FAQ.

For those interested in a faster infect deck, check out my take on UG Infect: Infectious!


Updates Add

Here we are folks; it's been 6 months since this deck was added to Tappedout and we've broken 200 upvotes, yay!

On another note, since the release of Amonkhet, this decks estimated budget has more than doubled; thanks to the user who pointed out the Crumbling Ashes and Blowfly Infestation increase.

I look forward to future users voicing their own twist\techs with this deck.

Until the next update (500+ upvotes?), Cheers!

Comments View Archive

@Algarath giving yourself poison counters doesn't really matter if the opponent does haven't their own way of dealing them.

Worst comes to worst, it's an almost guaranteed way of landing a poison counter (unless it gets countered ofc) to start proliferating. This can come in handy if the opponent has really walled themselves down.

December 10, 2016 9:54 p.m.

For Delta-117 the way to make this deck better is to make it green and black. I don't have the entire deck list but a buddy of mine has the deck and it commonly kills players on turn 2. The way it does this is by turn 1 Glistener Elf turn 2 attack cast Giant Growth or Larger Than Life or Titanic Growth along with Invigorate and Mutagenic Growth all the infect creatures in this deck are in it also. I am pretty sure it also runs Wild Defiance Carrion Call and Blight Mamba. I can attest to the fact that it is not fun to play against and turn 2, 3, and 4 wins are common. It does lose a lot of steam after that, and if it is a multiplayer game it will lose simply because no one wants to get poisoned and everyone targets him. This version may be more resiliant in that regard.

December 19, 2016 8:23 a.m.

Invigorate isn't modern legal but I see what you mean for changing. That is sounding a little too much like a different deck though instead becoming just about infect and wanting to win a bit faster. I already plan on building U/G infect eventually but Inkmoth Nexus and Noble Hierarchs are costly..

December 19, 2016 12:24 p.m.

Hyperalgialysis The suggestions you made definitely sound like a totally different deck; similar to what the pros run (although they run UG). This deck aims for more of a "grindy win" where you lock non-black decks out of the game via Kulrath Knight + Midnight Banshee and killing with proliferate effects like Contagion Clasp.

Delta-117 I actually have a UG infect deck (Infectious) on here, which i admit is basically the cookie-cutter build for UG; except i run Sylvan Caryatid instead of Noble Hierarch for budget reasons.

Again, thanks for commenting on this guys!

December 19, 2016 3:43 p.m.

Sudden Spoiling with infect and assuming they don;t have too much creature boosters, can instantly board wipe with infect.

December 21, 2016 2:29 a.m.

Really cool deck design for multiplayer Infect!

December 23, 2016 7:40 a.m.

Awesome +1

December 24, 2016 12:04 a.m.

4 Ichorclaw Myr, also Mutagenic Growth I also think, even though it's a cool idea, you are completely split between infecting or dealing them regular damage. Just some ideas

December 25, 2016 11:03 a.m.

@Guardians the Mutagenic Growth suggestion has the same implications that Hyperalgialysis's had. To make room for it takes away from the current game plan\synergy, and frankly you might as well take out all the instants\enchantments\artifacts and make a aggro buff infect deck (like Infectious) if you did.

On the other side, I could see the Ichorclaw Myr replacing Plague Stinger if the flying creature isn't mandatory.

December 25, 2016 11:51 a.m.

Was going to leave this in the other comment, but it timed out...

About being split between infect and regular damage, i don't think it is much of a problem if piloted correctly. The wither creatures aren't meant to go on the offense, rather they hang back and support the mechanics of the rest of the deck. Midnight Banshee weakens all non-black creatures every turn with -1/-1 counters, Kulrath Knight takes advantage of all the -1/-1 producers in the deck to lock the enemies down for infect creatures to break through, Necroskitter recruits your enemies that die with -1/-1 counters; see where this is going?

This deck isn't designed to have a fast clock like most "traditional" decks that win via poison counters. The odd time you might win via normal damage, but that's likely because they got locked out :)

December 25, 2016 12:08 p.m.

This is great! +1

December 30, 2016 3:37 a.m.

This is absolutely fantastic! +1 for simplicity!

December 31, 2016 9:58 a.m.

Very nice deck, instantly upvoted! Just a question: I already own a set of Ichorclaw Myr, what would you replace to put them in? The Ichor Rats?

January 1, 2017 11:22 a.m.

@coldjin very good question and thanks for the up vote!

First things first, depending on your local meta this queston likely has many "correct" answers; but I'll try to help you find yours.

Three possible replacements are: Septic Rats, Ichor Rats and Plague Stinger.

Ichor Rats potentially has -1/-2 when comparing stats while attacking, but unless countered provides a guaranteed poison counter on EACH opponent to start the proliferate train. Unless they are also running infect threats, who cares if we get one?

Septic Rats has the same stats if both cards meet their "buff" conditions. However Ichorclaw Myr costs one less and doesn't require them to be poisoned. Although it shouldn't be hard to land one poison counter, it depends on the opponent. Personally this would be my choice.

Plague Stinger has the advantage of flying but potentially weaker stats. Due to its flying it usually lands the first poison counter if Ichor Rats hasn't already. Depending on the opponent it could be easy to deal with, or their downfall.

Hope this helps you make a choice. I would delve deeper, but I'm actually working right now!

January 1, 2017 12:44 p.m.

@SKUFFLEZ, thanks for the thorough answer! I guess that my best shot is, if I ever decide to build this deck, to side them and decide which ones the game requires me to swap. Thank you again!

January 2, 2017 5:15 p.m.

three weeks ago I made something similar, budget deck focusing strictly on infect and evasion.. but you showed some really interesting wither cards here, probably need to reconsider :D http://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/sepsis-1/

January 3, 2017 8:25 a.m.

SaffronOlive made a mono-black infect deck a while back, but it feels way different than this deck. This deck seems more focused on proliferating for reach, while his infect deck was a mono black control deck.

Anyway, cool deck, +1.

Don't expect it to stay $20 for long.

January 3, 2017 12:02 p.m.

@Midn8 JohannKlink saturn999 thanks for the comment & upvote.

As for this deck staying $20, that's up to you\whomever decides to play this. I don't plan on changing the main board on here since it's a foundation for others to build from. Also I don't play this much in RL, it's more to show my friends what $20 can do!

January 3, 2017 1:06 p.m.

I meant that people would start buying this deck, so the price of all the pieces would increase.

The same thing happened with the $20 Mikaeus deck, and now the guy who built it has to keep swapping cards around to make the price go down.

January 3, 2017 1:18 p.m.

I noticed after commenting that it had increased by a dollar already haha

January 3, 2017 3:47 p.m.

SKUFFLEZ If I have 4x Phyrexian Crusader what would you replace? This would just be for casual games.

January 7, 2017 12:21 p.m.

workonyou Septic Rats for sure; First Strike and the Protections make up for the potential -1/-1 in stats.

January 7, 2017 12:30 p.m.

Wonderful budget deck. Haven't seen one of this in a while, you deserve a +1.

January 19, 2017 6:06 p.m.

maybe could include black sun's zenith

January 20, 2017 7:39 a.m.

I'm not sold on the idea of Black Sun's Zenith in this deck, simply because of it killing Plague Stinger, Ichor Rats and Ichorclaw Myr by default (unless Hand of the Praetors is in play). Although I will say that i could definitely see the potential if you're not worried about killing your own creatures.

January 21, 2017 2:22 p.m.

Maybe a couple of Tainted Strikes to give the wither creatures infect for that killing blow?

January 22, 2017 2:49 p.m.

Just like any other time that you'd want to add something in, you have to take something out. Scar is the only card that seems like a possible replacement since it's the same cost, and it's "weaker" than Virulent Wound. I agree that anyone thinking of adding this should limit it to 2; as to not affect the "counter engine" too much.

January 22, 2017 3:47 p.m.

Yes, I was thinking Scar as well, but depends on your synergy. I figured if you were going to add it, -2 instants in general. Perhaps 1 Scar, 1 of the others.

January 22, 2017 4:41 p.m.

Love the use of the enchantments! destroy a creature with -1/-1 and then put those counters to another...so dirty! +1 for sure.

Another good maybe board addition would be Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx, since you are running many double black CMC creatures the devotion can be well worth it to cast Skithiryx, the Blight Dragon for cheap.

February 4, 2017 1:01 p.m.

so i ran into this b*tch Melira, Sylvok Outcast today any recommendations to get rid of her?

February 21, 2017 7:17 p.m.

@ghostdesigns I suggest replacing 2-4 Scars depending on the type and how many annoyances you're dealing with; if they're only teching in 2 Melira, Sylvok Outcast and nothing else, you likely only need 2-3 answers in the deck to hold in your back pocket.

Some of these (creature) kill-card suggestions won't work depending on the converted mana cost or color. One mana: Deathmark Fatal Push \ Two mana: Doom Blade Go for the Throat Ultimate Price Smother

February 22, 2017 8:40 a.m.

Mono black deckbuilder's toolbox is my big list to help out mono-black players. I can reccomend Endless Whispers to lock out Melira, Sylvok Outcast sacrifice decks. Infinite Obliterationis practical against any similar creature combo. Bad Moon has potential here, but Lashwrithe is a must for the longer-range infect strats. Needle Specter has potential to empty their hand. Profane Command looks good with the fear mode and creature recursion later game. With all that low cost counter stuff, you seem pretty well set up against low cost aggro, but I'd consider Glistening Oil for the card advantage. On that note Delirium Skeins/Wrench Mind sideboard can ease a lot of controlier matchups.

February 25, 2017 7:30 a.m.

Why the combination of infect and wither? this is a dope deck but don't you want to be dealing damage either in poison counters or regular damage? If you're split between wither and infect then your creatures are doing damage to two different life pools.

March 1, 2017 2:57 p.m.

@GreenisGod, as mentioned previously, the creatures with wither are used more for defence and their abilities, rather than to deal damage. i.e. Kulrath Knight has some serious control potential, if your opponent isn't careful and Midnight Banshee can act as a slow, but effective board clearer, to make up for the lack of such.

March 2, 2017 3:06 a.m.

this seems like a nice cuget casual deck. I would get rid of the midnight banshees its to expensive for a deck with only 2o lands it seems like it would be almost impossible to get out

March 12, 2017 9:56 a.m.

I'm pretty Black Sun's Zenith would work well in this deck.

March 23, 2017 7:55 p.m.

Since you can target your own creatures with any -1/-1 counter, throw in 2-3 Power Conduit to perform cool buffs

April 5, 2017 12:08 p.m.

I just beat the $1,000+ Jeskai Flash 6.7 in online magic with this deck. You got my vote...

April 7, 2017 1:59 a.m.

Apologies about the large delay in replying; but i guess that's life!

@Blard I had looked at Black Sun's Zenith before for adding to the maybeboard, but I wasn't sold on the idea (36% of our creatures have 1 toughness <Plague Stinger & Ichor Rats>). After @GrammarWizard suggested Power Conduit I figure it could be worth a shot, specifically in slower multiplayer situations. The buffing could easily get out of hand if you have a Proliferate source like Contagion Clasp already handy, especially since it is repeatable unlike Grim Affliction.

@fs4317 Thanks for reporting your recent success; proud of you!

April 7, 2017 7:48 a.m.

Interesting take on poison/wither, I personally prefer Green/ Blue infect though, and it's shockingly budget friendly. Turn two or three victories with Glistener Elf or Blighted Agent with huge buffs is super effective. None of my friends let me play the deck, and that's even guys with T-1 netdecks haha. Overall, I like this. I might try out a few of the cards.

May 3, 2017 10:29 p.m.

@PickleNutz: First off thanks for taking the time to comment!

I also play UG infect, and I've since included a link in this decks description directing to it (Infectious), which I've also mentioned in the comments here a few times.

I am always going to be a fan of UG Infect, but much like you described, those on the receiving end tend to think otherwise! In my experience, anyone I've played against causally usually refuses to face it after one or two matches.

Honestly that is the main reason this deck came to be; I aimed for something budget friendly that uses infect & wither without being too obnoxious.

May 17, 2017 6:32 p.m.

if i was going to add in Skithiryx, the Blight Dragon and Phyrexian Crusader what do you recomend i take out?

May 22, 2017 6:25 a.m.

SKUFFLEZ - I can totally understand that, I have friends who wouldn't play against my U/G infect deck either. What we did though was just all went and made different infect decks, and then they started really getting into them. Surprisingly B/G infect is just as devastating and often beats that U/G infect deck. It's the same concept but with removal/ kill spells. Either way, you shouldn't sacrifice your decks potency for the sake of friends. Have them rise up to meet the challenge, or play other decks and use the infect sparingly. This deck is surprisingly fun to play though, I tried it out (minus a few cards) on the kitchen table against a few friends the other day when I first commented. I was missing Scar though, so I added in a card from Amonkhet that had similar function. It's a fun multiplayer deck for sure.

May 22, 2017 12:59 p.m.

@pints34 another user asked a similar question above. I'd replace 4x Septic Rats for 4x Phyrexian Crusader; in my opinion the protection and first strike outweigh the potential -1/-1 in stats when attacking. Some would say Ichor Rats, but I find the guaranteed poison counter upon entering the battlefield too good to pass up (due to proliferate).

As for Skithiryx, the Blight Dragon, replacing a Plague Stinger is probably the safest choice. You could replace a Kulrath Knight since it has the same converted mana cost and wouldn't affect the curve, but it's also one of the keys to locking your opponent out of the game. Ultimately the choice is yours.

@PickleNutz Happy you enjoyed piloting the deck, I find it shines the brightest in multiplayer formats. I want to note that I haven't scrapped or lowered the potency of my U\G infect deck, I simply play other decks against them like D&D: Dragons and Druids & GW Tron: Wrath of the Titans.

May 22, 2017 6:55 p.m.

does hand of the preaetors boost creature with wither too?

June 10, 2017 2:24 p.m.

Doesn't look like a fast infect deck, but it does look fun :)

You might want to make a side board for when you run into Melira, Sylvok Outcast

I think Swarmyard could also be a solid friendship destroyer with this deck if you don't mind the price

June 11, 2017 11:17 p.m.

@kon115 Hand of the Praetors doesn't boost wither creatures; although his main attraction is dealing a poison counter to target opponent when you cast an infect creature.

$MohenjoDaro Glad you at least think it's fun, even though it's a slower version of infect. I've added a point on dealing with Melira, Sylvok Outcast and added Swarmyard to the Maybeboard. Thanks!

June 12, 2017 9:01 a.m.

This is nice, but you should probably edit the title - as it's no longer $20. Blowfly Infestation's price went up by a lot and I think that's what made the price rise of the deck rise so much.

June 25, 2017 8:42 a.m.

And Crumbling Ashes as well. Both more than doubled in price after Amonkhet it seems.

June 25, 2017 8:43 a.m.

Awesome deck! The only thing I would change is take out one of the 4x three-drop creatures and replace it with 4x Ichorclaw Myr. The ONLY two-drop creature you currently have is Plague Stinger. Waiting until turn three to play a creature is much too slow.

June 25, 2017 12:01 p.m.

@ellie-is thanks for pointing the price increase out; I've updated various areas.

@DJMintEFresh The change you've suggested is completely understandable, especially if you play in a meta of well constructed decks (or at the very least fast). As stated in the description, this is meant to be a foundation to build from and morph to YOUR meta (Ichorclaw Myr has been in the maybeboard for awhile). As a budget deck, I expect most users will be playing in a slower\casual meta where speed isn't 100% necessary. If anything, I'd say the average casual\budget group tends to frown against decks that are focused on fast\consistent 3-6 turn wins (IE: "they're not fun to play against").

Thanks for your comments!

June 25, 2017 2:32 p.m.

I have always been a fan of Grotesque Mutation. Underrated pump spell in mono black. And as budget as it gets.

Seems like if could do some work here.

Cool deck. +1

June 26, 2017 8:29 a.m.

I would definitely consider adding Nest of Scarabs to this deck. You're already sprinkling the -1/-1 counters everywhere, why not get more free things from them.

September 26, 2017 5:28 p.m.

How about Nest of Scarabs to choked up a the board.

October 11, 2017 10:54 a.m.

Volt Charge could be a nice addition.

October 16, 2017 10:09 a.m.


Also rad deck dude

December 3, 2017 8:39 p.m.

Phyrexian Crusader is too strong to leave out

December 4, 2017 8:03 a.m.

@AJ@THE@MAN Suggestion added to the maybe board.

@willis1234 Volt Charge could work if someone was willing to run mountains, but considering everything else requires swamps it seems counter-intuitive to run this card.

@DjNotturn0 Conscious* :)

@SoakingDrop52 I agree Phyrexian Crusader is strong, but it's also been in the maybe board since day 1 (for those willing to break budget)!

Thanks again to everyone for taking the time to comment!

December 5, 2017 10:05 a.m.

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Date added 1 year
Last updated 3 weeks
Exclude colors R

This deck is Modern legal.

Cards 60
Avg. CMC 2.80
Folders cool decks, Deck que pienso armarme a futuro, Cool, Kul Dex, Modern Decks, You have my attention, Incredible Budget Decks, Modern Budget, Interesting, Likes, See all 287
Top rank #1 on 2017-01-03
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3 weeks ago)

-1 Nest of Scarabs maybe