Scrying Over the Loss of a Loved One (BG Devotion)

Standard* B/G (Golgari) Control Cruel Control Midrange

brianorwhatever Score: 2


I like golgari. I like midrange. I'm new to the fnm standard scene and i want this deck to do well while keeping its creature focus. A lot of the enjoyment I get out of Magic stems from seeing my creatures devastate my opponents and worm out of their attempts to kill them (Reaper of the Wilds) while having enough removal at my disposal to keep them out long enough to do so (Abrupt Decay, Hero's Downfall, etc). I feel the deck may be a bit too creature heavy right now, but I'm still pretty unfamiliar with making decks for this kind of competitive play style, so I hope I can find some help here!


This may be the final version of the deck, until Journey into Nyx gifts us with BG scry lands. Running 4 guildgates in a deck that all ready struggles to keep up with more aggressive builds, and has to be quick to deal with control matchups is a bit rough, but I'm enjoying my results thus far. I finally have all the cards I need for the deck (save Mutavault which I'm still proxying) so I'm no longer looking for "filler" cards. Let me know what you think about the build and how I could improve it!

Side Note: I know the mono-black devotion deck is almost strictly better than this build and I may be trying to force the BG combination just for Abrupt Decay and Reaper of the Wilds (aka Golgari AEtherling), but I plan on running both decks side by side. This list at more casual events and the mono black build at FNM or any GPT's/ PTQ's that may arise in my area, so please stray away from any suggestions that boil down to "take out the green splash" thanks!

I'm still fin-tuning the amount of "sweepers" in the deck. I'm finding that Desecration Demon is a bit of a glass canon, working very very well in certain match-ups, but becoming very clunky in others (ie any deck with token production). Reaper of the Wilds on the other hand has done well against just about any deck I've been able to get it on the board against. Pack Rat as well just seems to end games if I'm able to play it turn two, or later with some back up. Having scry lands will definitely help this deck quite a bit (February can't get here fast enough!) but until then I'll have to make due with the Reaper in conjunction with removal spells. Let me know what you think about the switch, and if Desecration Demon deserves a spot in the deck!

I've done some shifting around of the deck as far as removal and creatures go. I'm finding that Pack Rat just isn't doing what I would like it to, and turns my deck into something I don't enjoy playing (ie. turn two Rat, turns 3-X discard to make more Rats until I swing for lethal). I'm experimenting with Nightveil Specter at the moment and it's done wonders thus far. The only issue I could see myself running into with it is having too many basic Forests on the board and be unable to play one turn three, so I May be doing some mana tweaking in the future, and will definitely be changing things around once the BG scry land is released.

Also, I'm having an itching for this deck to go BUG, which would give me access to Jace, Architect of Thought, AEtherling, and a handful of counterspells, so we'll see how that pans out

So this just got really experimental. I've been running the deck lately as a sort of black devotion with a green splash or Reaper of the Wilds, Abrupt Decay, and Golgari Charm, which has had some mixed results. I feel these three cards are strong enough that, with enough backup, can stand on their own in my main board (I also just think they're really) and warrant this seemingly odd build. Essentially this list reflects the deck running as a control-leaning midrange BG deck, which can change gears and transform into a full-on mono lack devotion deck with a green splash.

I'm working on a sideboard plan, and I'm sure this list will evolve as that comes to fruition as well, but I look forward to testing this deck tomorrow night

So i'm deciding to finally make the leap into a smaller pool of creatures, putting this deck closer to a control build, since I've been playing it as such. I'm taking out my Pack Rats and Polukranos, World Eater proxies to make room for Deathrite Shaman and more copies of the powerhouses of the deck Reaper of the Wilds and Desecration Demon. I've scaled back the Scavenging Ooze amount as well to make room for a card I'm hoping will be worth the investment: Thoughtseize. I pulled a copy during a pack war with one of my roommates and I'm planning on proxying a couple more copies to see how it works with this slower but overall stronger version of the deck.
Played pretty well with (something close to) this build tonight! I'm finding Vraska the Unseen to be a huge threat in just about any match up. I wasn't able to get too much mileage out of Pack Rat but then again I only have one copy in the real world version of this deck so who knows. Slowing down and looking at this deck from a more removed control-esque perspective has worked wonders I'm growing more and more confident in my build decisions.I'm considering sideboarding two Putrefys, removing the two in my mainboard, and replacing them with Deathrite Shaman, more on that as I proxy test over the next few days.
I played a few rounds with a friend of mine with our decks swapped, and he gave me some sound advice, I feel, on the deck. I've moved the 3 copies of Experiment One and Witchstalker to the sideboard for use against control and aggro decks, respectively, ( The Experiment One's low cost and gradually increasing power hitting them in the face keeps the pressure on, and its regenerate ability gives it staying power in the midgame and Witchstalkers 3/3 Hexproof creature status has proven to be a huge problem for Red Deck Wins, as well as delaying blue devotion), and removed the Lotleth Trolls entirely. I'm going to experiment with Pack Rat at this upcoming fnm and hope to see some success with him, and I'm hopefully coming into a copy of Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx that can fuel multiple reproductions of it to add another win condition. Wish me luck!


mflaxer says... #1

I love it man! awesome build I might take out the caryatids for maybe some more scoozes. also i would consider Deadbridge Chant because since you are so controlling it will be like an extra draw step. also you can help change the odds in your favor by sniping out unwanted cards with deathrite shaman or scooze. please check out my deck Don't bother, I'll kill it anyway (rock) of similar build and insult all my choices. +1 from me

November 21, 2013 3:23 p.m.

mflaxer says... #2

I also highly recomend Gaze of Granite for the side board, excellent against not only tokens but any devotion deck as well

November 21, 2013 3:25 p.m.

Thanks! I used to run Gaze of Granite in the sb but i never found myself with enough mana for it to make any impact. I'm getting some other mixed reactions from running a playset of Sylvan Caryatid s, so I may bring that down in exchange for a late-game sweeper like Kalonian Hydra or AEtherling if i suddenly decide to go BUG) I'll definitely check your deck out

November 21, 2013 10:14 p.m.

xlaleclx says... #4

Having merchant in the sideboard makes absolutely zero sense especially since you're running a lot of bad cards that are only played in mono black for their devotion

December 13, 2013 2:51 a.m.

Yeah, you're probably right. On second though, My initial thought of Devotion with a green splash would probably run a lot better. I'll update the list to reflect what I'll be playing tonight

December 13, 2013 5:57 p.m.

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Date added 1 year
Last updated 1 year

This deck is Standard legal.

Cards 60
Avg. CMC 2.82
Views 1825