Description

Welcome to the top rated Azami deck on Tappedout!

Featured on thegigibeast, NarejED, and sonnet666's tier list!

The deck you see currently started out as the C14 Teferi, Temporal Archmage preconstructed Commander deck and has been evolving ever since. Early on I found that I had a love for Kamigawa and thought that Azami, Lady of Scrolls was a interesting commander. At the time I started building her I was unaware of just how powerful she could be and was not aware that she was considered a tier 1 commander by many players. However, since then, a lot has changed in the world of EDH. Most notably was the change from the Partial Paris Mulligan to the Vancouver Mulligan. This change ultimately hurt Azami because she relies on having a strong and consistent opening hand. As a result Azami is now viewed as being a high tier 2 pick or tier 1.5 if you will.

Azami has gone through quite a bit of changes and phases as I have been building her. She started off as a mish mash of inefficient wizards, counterspells, and general EDH goodstuff etc. As I refined the list more and more I moved her toward being a temporal (extra turn based) Azami list. You can find my temporal list here Temporal Azami. This lists strategy was ramping out early by playing rocks, dumping wizards on the board, and then chaining extra turn spells til I won. I decided this was certainly the best way to build her for my meta due to the fact that aggro and slower paced combo decks were the norm. I could generally just prevent them from winning by simply playing extra turn spells. This build worked very well for this meta and I would recommend that you build her this way when faced with a lot of aggro or just less competitive combo decks. More recently however, my meta has changed due to the fact that Im in college. I transitioned my temporal list into what you currently see here. This build is a more hardcore control Azami build that is optimized to deal with tier 1 combo and control lists. It runs many cheap counters and reactive spells to ensure that other decks dont go off ridiculously early. Check out the other tabs if you are interested in learning more about my build.

  • Azami, Lady of Scrolls: She's my lovely lady of card draw and of course what the deck revolves around. Play her as safely and quickly as possible. Once you establish a board state of Azami and a few other wizards it will be very difficult for your opponents to do anything of significance.

  • Aphetto Alchemist: This guy allows you to get extra value out of your mana rocks and artifacts such as Candelabra of Tawnos and Scroll Rack. When he isn't useful as utility you can always use him to draw off of Azami's ability.

  • Baral, Chief of Compliance: Awesome 2 mana cost reducer for all instants and sorceries you cast. Functions as a looting engine when you counter spells and to top it all off he's a wizard too.

  • Cursecatcher: This wizard allows you to stop early shenanigans like Entomb, Vampiric Tutor, Mystical Tutor etc. and win counter wars. Not to mention its only 1 mana so hes awesome.

  • Jace, Vryn's Prodigy  Flip: Oh boy, what can I say about baby jace? Well, early on he serves you a way of digging through your library to get rocks and lands if youre a bit behind and havent gotten Azami, Lady of Scrolls yet. If you already have Azami he is yet another 2 drop wizard you can draw from. If you decide later in the game to flip him there are plenty of awesome targets for his -3 such as Dig Through Time, High Tide, and Mystical Tutor. As for Jace, Telepath Unbound  Flips +1 and -9, you should almost never use them.

  • Laboratory Maniac: Lab man is your way of winning the game. You draw out your deck using one of the various combos (see Combos section) and win once you have successfully decked yourself. This deck does not run an alternative wincon which is explained in the Playing Azami section.

  • Martyr of Frost: This guy is an awesome 1 mana wizard. As long as you hold up 2 colorless mana and have a decent sized hand, you have a counterspell threat.

  • Sage of Epityr: Yet another awesome 1 mana wizard. His ETB trigger allows you to rearrange your next 4 draws. Seems good to me.

  • Sea Scryer: to the tune of Pillow Pets song It's a wizard. It's a dork. Its a wizard dork. In all seriousness though, this card is pretty good and often helps out with its utility. When you dont need it for utility it draws you a card. Overall, really solid wizard.

  • Snapcaster Mage: Allows you to recur instants and sorceries from your graveyard. Do I even need to explain how awesome he is?

  • Stonybrook Banneret: Its a cost reducer for all your wizards, it's a wizard itself, and its 2 mana. Whats not to love?

  • Trinket Mage: This guy fetches you Mana Crypt, Sol Ring, Candelabra of Tawnos etc. If you play an Azami, Lady of Scrolls deck without this guy, youre doing it wrong. Yeah, hes that good.

  • Vedalken AEthermage: It can fetch wizards for you and you can flash it in to draw a card on your opponents turn.

  • Candelabra of Tawnos: It allows you to produce an absolute crap ton of mana off of your Islands and High Tide. It also allows you to filter your artifact mana into blue mana by simply untapping your islands with Candelabra.

  • Chrome Mox: Exile a useless blue card to it and voila, you have a 0 mana rock that taps for blue.

  • Coldsteel Heart: Just another mana rock.

  • Fellwar Stone: Just another mana rock. Enters untapped which is nice.

  • Grim Monolith: A fast mana rock that gives you 3 mana for a 2 mana investment. Of course, that comes at the price of paying 4 to untap it, but it comes in handy while ramping.

  • Isochron Scepter: Mainly used for comboing out with Dramatic Reversal (see Combos section for more info). When you aren't using it for Iso-Dramatic combo you can put something nasty under it like Mana Drain or Counterspell etc.

  • Lotus Petal: 1 blue mana for free. Awesome.

  • Mana Crypt: Do I even need to explain how good this card is?

  • Mana Vault: A fast mana rock that gives you 3 mana for a 1 mana investment. Comes at the price of paying 4 mana to untap it or taking 1 damage on your upkeep, still very worth it for ramping.

  • Mox Diamond: Pitch a useless land to it and you have 0 mana rock that taps for any color.

  • Mox Opal: Do you have 3 or more artifacts including Mox Opal? Yes? Then you have another free rock that produces any color.

  • Paradox Engine: A crazy untapping engine that allows us to win the game with a few rocks and wizards out. See the Combos section for more details.

  • Sapphire Medallion: Reduces the cost of blue spells by one generic mana. Solid.

  • Sensei's Divining Top: Great deck manipulation, 1 mana, and Trinket Mage tutorable. Also, in combination with Long-Term Plans it makes for a 4 mana tutor to get any card to your hand.

  • Sol Ring: If you're an EDH player and you don't play this card then you're doing it wrong.

  • Back to Basics: Hits a lot of the top tier competitive decks without harming your land base much at all.

  • Mind Over Matter: This card is the combo piece Azami, Lady of Scrolls is known for. See the "Combos" section for more details.

  • Mystic Remora: Get a stupid amount of card advantage from people casting non-creature spells. Allows the deck to run a bit more independently of Azami, Lady of Scrolls and lets you catch up if you're behind.

  • Arcane Denial: An excellent all purpose 2 mana counterspell. The downside being your opponent gets card advantage, but its usually worth it. You can also use it on one of your own spells that you dont particularly want to draw 3.

  • Brainstorm: Allows for smoother mulligans and gives you great deck manipulation for only 1 mana.

  • Chain of Vapor: A very versatile bounce spell for 1 mana. There are so many permanents you can use it on in this deck to net value such as, Candelabra of Tawnos, Trinket Mage, Snapcaster Mage, or any of your fast mana rocks. Of course you can use it more traditionally to bounce nonland permanents your opponents control, but I dont find that as useful generally.

  • Counterspell: "No."

  • Cyclonic Rift: Probably blues most iconic board wipe. Need I say more?

  • Delay: Counters any spell for three of your opponents turns for 2 mana. Solid.

  • Dig Through Time: This deck LOVES to dump cards in the graveyard and manipulate them. This card just gets you an excellent amount of value, usually for 2 mana, and at instant speed.

  • Dramatic Reversal: Most notably combos with Isochron Scepter (see Combos section for more details). It can also be used alone to gain extreme value from your rocks and wizards.

  • Flusterstorm: The best defensive counterspell in a competitive setting. I mean, just look at it... it has Storm.

  • Force of Will: Say "No" without paying mana.

  • Frantic Search: An excellent digging spell that either refunds itself or nets you mana.

  • High Tide: While this build is not centered around playing this card, it is still an excellent accelerant that can propel you through mid-game or help seal a win.

  • Impulse: A mini Dig Through Time for 2 mana. Helps you get what you need when you need it.

  • Long-Term Plans: An excellent tutor for mono blue with a practically negligible downside.

  • Mana Drain: Say "No", but on steroids.

  • Mental Misstep: Great for countering those pesky turn 1 Sol Rings, Explorations, Vampiric Tutors, etc.

  • Muddle the Mixture: Serves double duty as a counterspell and a tutor. Excellent.

  • Mystical Tutor: Generally used to grab Transmute Artifact, Whir of Invention, or Dramatic Reversal. One of the best tutors you have access to.

  • Negate: Say "No", except to creatures.

  • Pact of Negation: Say "No" for free kinda..

  • Rapid Hybridization: One mana kill spell in blue. This one makes their dude into Kermit the Frog.. kinda.. not really.

  • Remand: A strong counter for competitive metas due to the cantrip. The fact that it goes back to their hand isnt generally a huge downside as this card gives you a good tempo swing.

  • Spell Pierce: Great early counterspell that stops decks that like to ramp early on. Overall a very useful counter in competitive metas, especially against deck that play tight combos.

  • Swan Song: A great defensive counter with the minimal downside of your opponent getting a bird friend.

  • Thirst for Knowledge: A solid instant speed draw spell that can be used to feed Dig Through Time. I like having draw spells like this because they decrease reliance on Azami.

  • Whir of Invention: Early game you can use it as an instant speed Trinket Mage to get rocks. Later on you can use it to get finishers like Paradox Engine and Isochron Scepter. All around very solid.

This is the most standard combo of the deck. Use it to filter through your library to find Laboratory Maniac and win.

Gives you infinite mana (as long as you have 3 or more artifact mana) and allows you to draw your entire deck with Azami.

Deck Strategy

Under Construction

Deck Pace

Under Construction

Under construction

This section is dedicated to those who have helped me in the process of making this deck.

Brewstorm

Roryrai

I will continue updating this deck and this description. If you enjoyed don't forget to + 1!

Updates

Comments View Archive

Archwizard says... #1

Comment section reset.

January 29, 2017 5:03 p.m.

RubyOrzhov says... #3

I would recommend doing that every three months. Depends on the state of comments. It just makes it easier to scroll and navigate your deck.

January 29, 2017 6:22 p.m.

Archwizard says... #4

RubyOrzhov Yeah, I generally don't get that many comments, but recently there have been more people commenting. I'm glad that people have taken interest in my build.

January 29, 2017 10:02 p.m.

Kappash says... #5

Nice deck, I have some questions though:

  1. How do you rate Whir of Invention against other artifact tutors? Is it worth it without Candelbara?

  2. How good do you consider Top and Rack?

  3. Im not convinced on Delay (yes the mana cost is good, but 2 turns delay in a 4 player game?), how do you rate it against your other counter spells?

January 31, 2017 4:36 p.m.

Archwizard says... #6

Kappash

  1. Early game Whir is a 3 mana instant speed Mana Crypt. Late game it's an instant speed Isochron Scepter or Paradox Engine. All around it is better than other artifact tutors excluding Transmute Artifact (which is sometimes better depending on scenario). Yeah, I think Whir is still good without Candelabra.

  2. Top is pretty good, generally gets stuff when I need it and can combo with Paradox Engine. Rack is one of those cards that works best when you're ahead. It can be useful when playing from behind too. It's on my list of cards that I may cut in the future just because it's easy to get Rack locked when behind. I do like it though because when it works, boy does it WORK.

  3. It is 3 turns that the card is in suspend, also it is 3 of the OPPONENT'S turn. Generally by the time that those 3 turns are up I will be able to counter it again or the game will be over. 3 turns is a long time to not have access to a spell, especially if they decide to keep their commander in suspend.

January 31, 2017 5:23 p.m.

Gohrin says... #7

Hey there Mr.Azami. ;)

I'm trying to build a deck similiar to yours, but im stuck between the coice of my general- it's either Azami or Niv-Mizzet. I want to win with the combo Revearsal+Scepter+Draw ... why did you choose Azami over Niv? Which one may be better in a Multiplayer Enviroment?

Greets, Gohrin

February 2, 2017 7:19 a.m.

Archwizard says... #8

Gohrin I never really chose between Azami or Niv. I decided to build Azami because of my love for Kamigawa. In my opinion Azami is a more powerful commander than Niv due to her stronger late game potential and overall better card advantage. I believe that Azami outclasses Niv in most categories. Azami is top of tier 2 if not tier 1.5 and Niv is mid tier 2. Play the one that makes you the happiest. If you're looking for raw power Azami definitely outclasses Niv, especially in terms of Dramatic Scepter combo.

February 8, 2017 5:40 a.m.

This list is pretty good. I wouldn't run scroll rack nor mox opal (been screwed by it too many times in my experience).

Instead I would pithing needle (yisan/teferi) and relic of progenitus, which is 100% necessary for a meta with karador or meren and at worse is a cantrip. They can both be fetched by trinket mage.

February 11, 2017 4:15 a.m.

Archwizard says... #10

ComradeJonathan

Mox Opal is very good and will most likely never get removed. The reason you get screwed by it is because your list doesn't run nearly enough artifacts. Scroll Rack is good too (I am looking to get rid of it though), but I don't think Pithing Needle or Relic of Progenitus are worthy replacements for it.

February 11, 2017 5:22 a.m.

Burgdawg says... #11

Is Paradox Engine worth the 5 or is it a win more card in your experience? Also are you going to trade Trinket Mage for Trophy Mage or figure out how to run both?

February 11, 2017 10:12 a.m.

Archwizard says... #12

Burgdawg Paradox Engine is generally my main wincon due to it's easy accessibility. Mind Over Matter has become my backup plan, generally. P Engine is definitely worth a slot. As for Trinket Mage vs. Trophy Mage, Trinket Mage is far better overall. Especially in this deck, considering I don't run any 3 CMC artifacts.

February 11, 2017 1:23 p.m.

Lilbrudder says... #13

The list is looking great AzamiLadyofScrolls!

I have a quick question for you. How has whir of invention worked out?

February 11, 2017 1:31 p.m.

Archwizard says... #14

Lilbrudder

I'm glad you appreciate it! Whir is an excellent card in my opinion. If you have it early on you can always Whir for 0 or 1 and get a Crypt or any other great rock, which makes for great consistency. Late game it gets me P Engine or Iso scepter. The fact that it's instant speed is why I like it. If it were a sorcery I don't think it'd be nearly as playable.

February 11, 2017 1:36 p.m.

Driemer84 says... #15

Have you considered Aetherflux Reservoir as an alternate win con to Lab Man? It seems if you get paradox engine going, you'll be able to shoot down multiple opponents with Reservoir.

I'm really considering building an Azami list and just wonder if another win con is even needed. I also just really like the idea of winning with Reservoir.

I understand nothing else will compare to the power of Candelabra, but I will never own that card. If you didn't have one, what might you replace it with?

February 14, 2017 11:36 p.m.

Archwizard says... #16

Driemer84 As long as you're in a meta that doesn't RFG win cons directly from your deck, you should have no problem with running just Lab Man for a win con. I personally don't like the idea of running Reservoir because drawing into it before getting P Engine isn't all that great. In general, I like running as few dedicated combo pieces as possible because they generally slow the deck down. In place of Candelabra I'd probably either put in another good a good wizard or a rock.

February 15, 2017 12:56 a.m.

Gbot says... #17

In an effort to stray outside my comfort zone and attempt to play a mono-blue deck, I'm giving this list a try. when I previously attempted to build Azami it was Wizard tribal with gems such as Apprentice Wizard, Sigil Tracer and Riptide Director; Would any of these be worthy options for the list? Similarly, what about Memnarch?

February 17, 2017 6:42 a.m.

Moclord says... #18

I see you're running Snow lands and talk of extraplanar lens in your deck description, but its not on your list. Did it get cut? Was it too slow?

February 20, 2017 12:20 p.m.

Archwizard says... #19

Moclord An update for this deck's description is long over due. I've been busy with school and life lately, but yes it did get cut. It wasn't really a matter of being too slow, it was a matter of it being a "win more" type of card. If I am ahead then Extraplanar would help me get further ahead, but it doesn't really do much when playing from behind. I'd much rather have mass card advantage in the form of Timetwister, Windfall, and Time Spiral than have more mana. If Azami gets removed 2 or 3 times (which shouldn't happen), but regardless can happen, I want cards that will help me get back into the game.

February 20, 2017 12:42 p.m.

Moclord says... #20

AzamiLadyofScrolls, Thank you for the prompt answer. I assumed it was this reason that it was cut, I find that happens in may of the decks I put it in. Any ideas what is a good alternative for Timetwister, I know Day's Undoing but its not ideal. Im trying to work up the courage and funds to get a candelabra but timetwister is too far out there for the budget

February 20, 2017 1:17 p.m.

Archwizard says... #21

Moclord Currently, the only 2 cards I don't own for this deck are Flusterstorm (because of shipping issues) and Timetwister because I haven't gotten around to buying it. Only buy it if you are going to dedicate yourself to playing a competitive deck. If not, then it's not worth it. Day's Undoing is not ideal, but there aren't really any worthy replacements I can think of for Twister. You could run another wizard for more draw per turn, though that won't be as good as getting a new hand the majority of the time (all depends what's in your hand).

February 20, 2017 2:19 p.m.

Rarian says... #22

I love this deck. Have my upvote sir :). I've managed to playtest this deck like yesterday in my playgroup (pod was Jeleva storm, Meren stax and Food Chain Prossh) and it has done very well. I've won 2 out of 3 games with it, which is really decent result. I got some questions, though:

  1. I get the reason why Ancient Tomb isn't there, like Azami being UUU etc. but is it really that harmful for your mana base with so many Islands whatsoever? Isn't possibility of exploding hand with even more mana rocks worth a try? Have you tested it and found it useless or was it just your assumption?

  2. I found it really hard to combo off while Caustic Caterpillar was on the battlefield. We can still win with MoM if we have like two cards in hand, but it is much harder to have any use of the paradox engine or the scepter. What do you think of adding Stifle or maybe even Disallow to this deck? I get that disallow may seem too slow for competetive pods, but on the other hand with Baral/Helm/Medallion it's strictly better counterspell. Maybe worth a try?

  3. I don't quite get cutting Time Spiral. Since turn 3 it's almost always at least as good as timetwister and it's absolutely barbaric with high tide. I see now that you put it into your deck but why haven't you played it before? I get that sometimes tutn 4 is too late, but come on - this card is a staple for blue.

  4. Sea Gate Oracle is too slow, isn' it :(? I like this card a lot and thought that it may be the deck it suits, but I agree 2U with no instant speed is quite clunky cost.

February 22, 2017 11:37 a.m.

Archwizard says... #23

Rarian

Thank you very much! I'm glad other people are getting enjoyment out of this list!

  1. Ancient Tomb was in the deck at one point. I found that having another island was usually better off. Ancient Tomb actually begins to hurt quite a bit when you need to use it a few times along with all the other sources in the deck that deal me damage. I may test it again in the future, because the land base has changed quite a bit since last I cut it.

  2. My most recent updates to the deck by re-adding Time Spiral and introducing Tormod's Crypt address the issue that this deck can have with opponents having constant graveyard recursion.

  3. You were obviously not using the most recent form of this deck ;) (Added Time Spiral back in 3 days ago) I find it can sometimes be clunky, but generally you are correct in saying that it's absolutely nasty and amazing.

  4. Yeah, sorry.. too slow. If a wizard is 3 mana they generally have to be pretty excellent. ie Trinket Mage

February 22, 2017 1:25 p.m.

Archwizard says... #24

Gbot

Sorry for not replying sooner, completely forgot to respond to your comment until now. The wizards you mentioned are fine when playing casually. Sigil Tracer is the only one you mentioned that fits into competitive because it can be a backup combo piece in the Dramatic/Scepter combo. Personally, I don't like it even then, not enough slots in order for it to be included. Thanks for the question.

February 22, 2017 3:43 p.m.

Rarian says... #25

I've played with this deck few times more and I've made one more observation - Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx seemed like a "win-more" land everytime it entered the battlefield. Few times I've regretted its not an island (I couldn't have played t2 azami with crypt and mox or play t3 high tide with spiral etc.) and anytime it gave +1 or +2 mana my board position was already good enough not to care for the extra mana it provided. I guess sometimes it is useful (azami itself makes 3 points of devotion) but this deck lacks mana sinks and it feels like it doesn't need this extra mana at all. All the combos are cheap, we prefer to cast spells in multiple opponents' turns and the interaction with candelabra isn't worth it at all. Drawbacks overweigh the advantages imho. What are your thoughts Human_Wizard? You've played with this deck a lot more and I'd like to hear how Nykthos works for you.

February 28, 2017 6:21 a.m.

Archwizard says... #26

Rarian I have honestly noticed the same thing ever since I cut down on my blue permanents. It is currently one of the cards that is on the chopping block. I have tested both Ancient Tomb and Island in its place. Not quite sure what I will replace it with as of now, but it will most likely be an Island. It definitely doesn't belong in my list anymore and will be replaced in the near future. As always, thanks for the comments and observations.

February 28, 2017 12:58 p.m.

AxelMarkov says... #27

+1 Purely for the deck name, but I also loved the deck and Azami is one of my all time favorite commanders.

April 9, 2017 8:20 a.m.

VD_D says... #28

Any reason why Tolaria West isn't being run? It's a tutor for Minamo, School at Water's Edge, Cavern of Souls and all the 0 mana artifacts.

April 26, 2017 11:03 p.m.

Archwizard says... #29

VD_D It's simply too slow and there's not enough space for it.

April 26, 2017 11:08 p.m.

Maybe not a spectacular suggestion, but maybe a of the blue maguss like Magus of the Bazaar or Magus of the Unseen.

April 29, 2017 3:22 p.m.

I always love Quicken in instant + sorcery heavy decks

May 15, 2017 5:19 p.m.

trorax says... #32

is there a budget version of this deck???

May 28, 2017 9:47 p.m.

Archwizard says... #33

trorax Currently I haven't decided to create a budget variant of this list. If that's something that a lot of people are interested in then I could definitely do it. The question is, how much of a budget are we talking about? Under $500? Under $1000?

May 28, 2017 9:51 p.m.

trorax says... #34

I think under 500 would be then way to go as it will give people a way to start off the deck and get a feel for it

May 28, 2017 11:32 p.m.

Archwizard says... #35

trorax An under 500 variant is possible, but I can't see it having nearly comparable competitive capabilities.

May 29, 2017 12:04 a.m.

trorax says... #36

i understand that. it is more to get a good grasp of the deck while owning some of the cards...its similiar with what i did with tazri...i lost a ton of consistency but it was valuable experience for when i did eventually upgrade.That and im sure im not the only person who has asked for this.

May 29, 2017 12:11 a.m.

trorax says... #37

I just realized if you take out timetwister candelabra and mana drain out you reduce the total price by 1300+ which is insane on its own...i would go on and keep making cuts and finding sub optimal replacements, but if i continue without feeling like id destroy the deck in the process.

May 29, 2017 12:15 a.m.

trorax says... #38

thoughts on Prodigal Sorcerer as an infinite damage win con with dramatic scepter combo?

June 5, 2017 7:01 p.m.

Archwizard says... #39

trorax He's an extraneous combo piece who is practically useless by himself.

June 5, 2017 7:30 p.m.

Smokethulhu says... #40

Just out of Curiosity, why don't you run Power Artifact to go infinite with Basalt Monolith?

June 8, 2017 11:33 p.m.

Archwizard says... #41

Smokethulhu I don't play Basalt Monolith, however if you were referring to Grim Monolith the reason I don't play it is simply because I don't have a relevant outlet for infinite colorless mana that warrants me playing it. Sure I wouldn't have to pay colorless for my cards, but the combo is simply too narrow and makes me a target without having a really impactful benefit.

June 8, 2017 11:54 p.m.

Smokethulhu says... #42

I did mean Grim Monolith, and I guess that's a fair point. You could always look at the top 3 of your library an infinite number of times with sensei's top. That's useful enough right? ;)

June 9, 2017 12:18 a.m.

AragornS says... #43

Archwizard, have you considered Grafdigger's Cage in place of Tormod's Crypt? I mean, Grafdigger's Cage not only inhibits reanimator strategies, but it also shuts down cheating creatures from libraries (i.e. Yisan, the Wanderer Bard, Natural Order) and some storm lists that may rely on Yawgmoth's Will. Not to mention that it is still tutorable through all of your artifact tutors, including Trinket Mage. The only downside to the card would be the anti-synergy against your own Snapcaster Mage and Jace, Vryn's Prodigy  Flip when he is Jace, Telepath Unbound  Flip, which I don't believe is that much of a downside.

July 12, 2017 3:27 p.m.

Archwizard says... #44

AragornS I considered Grafdigger's at the time of picking my graveyard hate. It's definitely a good card and I originally disliked it because of the downside you mentioned. In a theory-crafted cEDH metagame I believe that Grafdigger's is an overall better hate piece, but I'm not sure if it's better in my meta specifically. Shutting down my tools like Snapcaster and JVP isn't a huge deal, but can definitely become relevant when I'm being focused or I need to combo off. I will most likely add it for the sake of it being better overall as a hate piece, but I think I'll need to do some more thorough testing first.

July 12, 2017 5:05 p.m.

AragornS says... #45

Archwizard Out of curiosity, what does your meta consist of?

July 12, 2017 6:57 p.m.

Archwizard says... #46

AragornS My meta is primarily storm combo decks and some stax. In terms of commanders in my meta there's Tasigur, Mono Green Selvala, Edric, Yidris, Arcum, Arcanis, Derevi, Brago etc. The most notable graveyard deck in my meta is a Sidisi Brood Tyrant combo deck. In the scenario of a storm deck abusing Yawg's Will, Tormod's Crypt does the job just fine. I do like the fact that Grafdigger's stops Yisan and other various cheat effects. My meta hasn't really had much of those lately, but I definitely value that aspect of Grafdigger's because I've gone against those decks in the past.

July 12, 2017 7:25 p.m.

AragornS says... #47

Archwizard I just figure that since Grafdigger's Cage is a continuous effect (unlike Tormod's Crypt being a one shot effect) along with the added benefit of affecting all opponents instead of one. If I am safe to assume that the Sidisi, Brood Tyrant deck is a Hermit Druid.dec, they probably run Memory's Journey for protection if the combo is disrupted (protect pieces and prevent loss of deckout). Besides Dread Return, I don't know of any other relevant cards in cEDH with Flashback, but it does stop those shenanigans too.

July 12, 2017 9:11 p.m.

Fernling says... #48

I'm working on building a budget version of a build very similar to this. It will be my first time playing the format, so bear with me. How does this deck handle losing Laboratory Maniac? Either to the graveyard or to exile. If it's put into the graveyard by either hand removal or milled off the top etc. is the only way to get it back with the use of Timetwister or Time Spiral? Are we completely screwed if lab man is exiled?

Thanks!

July 15, 2017 3:35 a.m.

Archwizard says... #49

Fernling This question has been asked before and I will share with you the answer I gave the other person who asked this question along with my feeling about it now.

"What do you do if Laboratory Maniac gets rfg'd? Granted it shouldn't happen as we're playing control, but with a 4 person pod weirder things have happened."

My response:"Honestly, my deck has gotten so consistent with having one wincon that it really doesn't need any other win cons. Generally I'm not gonna cast Laboratory Maniac until I can combo off and when that happens you can be damn well sure I have control of the entire game by that point. The only thing I really have to worry about are effects that remove him from my hand or from my deck like Jester's Cap or Thoughtseize (doesn't rfg but it'll slow me down until I can cast Time Spiral) and I haven't really encountered those cards often enough to justify running another win con. If you do play in a meta where a lot of people remove cards directly from your hand or deck then run another wincon, but really you shouldn't worry too much about him being removed from the board. If lab man does get removed from the board then you're doing it wrong."

Essentially, you shouldn't be casting Lab Man until you are in a winning position. You are screwed if he gets removed from the game, but the odds that he will be removed directly from your deck or milled in a competitive EDH setting are slim to none (keep in mind this list is specifically tuned for a competitive EDH environment). If he somehow does get milled or discarded Twister and Spiral are quite reliable in getting him back. By the time you get Lab Man on board you should easily have enough spells to protect him and your combo pieces. If you really want to run an alternative wincon I'd suggest Aetherflux Reservoir just because it goes so well with the Paradox Engine / Isochron Dramatic lines of play. I have tested Reservoir recently for this build and it just seems a little extra in my opinion. The deck doesn't need it to win and it's already quite difficult to find slots for all the cards I need for the deck to function properly. There may come a time where I will run Reservoir in this build, but for now I don't see the need for an alternative wincon.

In short, this deck does get screwed when you remove him entirely from the game, but it really doesn't happen enough in my experience for me to justify a change. Thanks for the question.

July 16, 2017 12:16 a.m.

Dr.Ache says... #50

Candelabra and no TRON lands? Tell me more

July 25, 2017 10:40 p.m.

Archwizard says... #51

Dr.Ache Candelabra functions as one of the essential pieces of the High Tide package. It also provides me access to filtering colorless mana that I get from my artifacts into blue mana early on. This often results in me getting Azami a turn earlier than usual. The tron lands have no place in this deck because I really have no interest in generating that much colorless, blue sources are extremely valuable to this deck.

July 25, 2017 10:46 p.m.

AragornS says... #52

Archwizard Just have two primary questions: 1) Is it worth running High Tide if one isn't going to have a Candelabra of Tawnos? I mainly ask this question because I understand its not everyone can afford a CoT 2) Have you found Stonybrook Banneret to be that effective of a wizard? I mainly just wonder if the static ability to cheapen wizards is super relevant with so few wizards (outside of your commander, you don't really get that huge of an impact like you would though Sapphire Medallion, which I notice is in the list and support it). If you were to consider replacing the wizard, what would you replace it with?

July 26, 2017 12:03 a.m.

Archwizard says... #53

AragornS

1) I'd still say it's a pretty powerful card especially considering the synergies it has with cards like Time Spiral and Frantic Search. In terms of if I'd still run High Tide without Candelabra I think I'd say yes. It's good on its own, Candelabra just makes it completely busted.

2) I find Stonybrook Banneret to be very effective. After years of testing and cuts it's one of the few survivors from my original list. The fact that it's a 2 mana wizard that reduces Azami's cost is reason enough to run it in my opinion. I really wouldn't ever think about replacing it. The next cut happening to this list is most likely going to be Snap. I hope that we get a good enough wizard from the next commander set so I can replace it.

July 26, 2017 1:17 a.m.

When a third of the price is in a single card

July 26, 2017 5:49 p.m.

Archwizard says... #55

Swiggitywiggity

A damn good card I might add.

July 26, 2017 5:52 p.m.

Dr.Ache says... #56

Fair... You present a solid argument, however they're basically free and if assembled can provide you a ton of help. I get where you're going though a card doesnt always have to be broken to provide efficiency.

July 27, 2017 1:47 p.m.

Archwizard says... #57

Dr.Ache The fact of the matter is the Tron lands are strictly worse than having islands unless I control all 3 of them and I can't simply take 3 islands out of the deck to make room for them. This deck, like many competitive decks, requires a careful balance of cards. Even if I do have all 3 of them active adding 3 lands that tap for colorless will disrupt the balance I have here quite a bit. The colorless mana is simply terrible in comparison to having blue. Additionally, playing the Tron lands weakens my ability to play Back to Basics effectively.

July 27, 2017 3:14 p.m.

Dr.Ache says... #58

Totally agreed. I picked the argument for good reason. Nice job justifying and explaining! +1 from me

July 27, 2017 8:34 p.m.

dudeeliw says... #59

It'd be nice if you didn't show what cards you have foils of that serve no point other than showing off and making it a hassle for someone to see how much the deck actually costs.

August 4, 2017 2:18 p.m.

Archwizard says... #60

dudeeliw It serves as documentation for what I have plus I enjoy tracking the value of my list as it is. If you're really curious about how much a deck costs then you can simply go to http://store.tcgplayer.com/massentry , copy a list, delete the unnecessary text, and you have the price of a deck. Took me less than 5 minutes for my list. It's about $2800 without foils if you're curious.

August 4, 2017 2:37 p.m.

mikethegreek says... #61

I've been playing something very similar to your list. The deck seems air tight but I've made a few changes after considering my own meta. There is one card that I don't understand why it isn't on here, ertai's meddling. Is there a reason it didn't make it in your list? The errata makes it an exile-spell not a counterspell allowing it to get around uncounterable stuff.

August 5, 2017 10:34 a.m.

Archwizard says... #62

mikethegreek Ertai's Meddling isn't all that great of a counterspell in my opinion unless you're in a meta full of uncounterable spells. Even then, I believe there are better options for dealing with uncounterable spells in the game. In my experience of playing competitive EDH most people don't play uncounterable spells which is why I don't see the need to play Ertai's Meddling or any other anti-uncounterable sort of spell in my list.

August 5, 2017 1:01 p.m.

mikethegreek says... #63

Fair enough. In my meta Cavern of Souls is a real thing and is often paired with Gitrog and other green combo generals. The need for uncounterable counterspells is beyond required to survive if you go last. Also, I find it very useful against other counterspells functioning as a Dispel for 1U. Thanks for getting back to me so quickly. Looking forward to the next spoilers, hope we get some new toys.

August 6, 2017 12:38 p.m.

Archwizard says... #64

mikethegreek If you're worried about uncounterable creatures and permanents this deck runs plenty of removal for them which is why I don't play conditional counterspells. Really the only thing that this deck can't deal with in terms of uncounterability are instants and sorceries. As I mentioned before I don't think they're prevalent enough in competitive Commander to warrant playing more narrow counter magic. I too hope we get some new toys, thanks for commenting! :)

P.S. I'm half Greek and know how to speak Greek (if that holds any significance to you).

August 6, 2017 7:42 p.m.

mikethegreek says... #65

Well Gitrog in particular runs an instant speed combo so if I don't have removal for the discard outlet in response to the Gitrog cast I lose on the spot, granted there is no graveyard interruption (This is also the reason I run Tormod's Crypt over Grafdigger's Cage). There is also a player who runs Daretti and frequently destroys everything with obliterate.

P.S. I never had the chance to learn to speak Greek because of an issue with my grandmother not wanting my father and his father talking behind her back about things.

August 7, 2017 3:19 p.m.

Archwizard says... #66

mikethegreek The things you encounter in a more casual setting such as Obliterate don't usually happen in competitive which is why the deck isn't built against it. I optimized this list to function best in a cEDH meta-game meaning that if you want to play it in a more casual setting you may find difficulty with some of the cards I have chosen for this list. I encourage people to play the best cards they can for their particular meta. That being said, if you take a look in the comments above, the conversation between me and AragornS justifies the Grafdigger's Cage pick over Tormod's. Each has their strengths and weaknesses, play what you think works best for your meta.

August 7, 2017 4:23 p.m.

Comodou says... #67

@Archwizard I wanted to know why you play Sky Diamond and Coldsteel Heart.

August 11, 2017 1:52 a.m.

Archwizard says... #68

Comodou Multicolored decks have access to the signets and some of them have access to the cycle of talismans. Unfortunately as mono blue we do not have that luxury, but we still need a lot of cheap rocks that tap for blue. Even though they aren't the most ideal rocks they are quite good in that they give us turn 2 Azami more often. Turn 1 Sol ring or Crypt into Sky Diamond or Coldsteel happens quite often. This ends up resulting in turn 2 Azami and winning the game within the next few turns.

August 11, 2017 2:21 a.m.

Burhms says... #69

Hi Archwizard, first of all i like to thank you for the great work. Which card would you put in the deck instead of Candelabra of Tawnos and Timetwister (leaving the rest of the dack as it is)

Greetings from an approaching Azami player :)

August 16, 2017 1:47 p.m.

Archwizard says... #70

Burhms I will preface what I'm about to tell you by saying there are no true replacements for Candelabra or Twister in terms of raw power level. This is not to say that there aren't budget options, but do not expect the same results. In terms of replacing Twister, Day's Undoing is a decent option that gives you a similar effect. The ability to draw a new 7 is very useful to this deck so I'd probably recommend that you play Day's Undoing for a budget option. I don't believe that Candelabra is as powerful to this deck as Twister and there aren't really any similar effects in the mono blue color identity for Candelabra. I'd recommend replacing it with a solid 1 or 2 mana wizard or possibly a tech card for your meta like Stifle or Spell Snare(I find that these cards are extremely undervalued and they tend to go quite far when you need them).

August 16, 2017 8:39 p.m.

Burhms says... #71

Archwizard Thank you for your quick reply. :)

August 17, 2017 5:33 a.m.

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Revision 89 (3 weeks ago)

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+1 Into the Roil main
-1 Tormod's Crypt main
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