Newly updated!

Abusing -1/-1 counters for fun and profit! This is a token/stax deck, killing and maiming your opponents' creatures. You can take advantage of the fact that most tables will have at least one player without a creature on turn 3, so you can swing to kill small utility creatures and get snakes.

SNAKES FOR DAYS - The value from spells like Black Sun's Zenith is disgusting: when you kill the board, you retain an army of deathtouching snakes! It's also ludicrously easy to get more than 20 snakes, sac them for mana/cards, then win.

The main wincons are stax (Smokestack, Mind Slash, etc) and/or classic beatdown (Eldrazi Monument, Triumph of the Hordes, etc). There are also three major infinite combos:

There are three main infinite combos in this deck:

-- Blowfly Infestation+Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons gives infinite ETBs, infinite counter placement, and infinite death triggers. With this combo working, Nest of Scarabs gives infinite creatures, Blood Artist/Zulaport Cutthroat gives infinite life loss, Fecundity gives infinite draw, et cetera.

-- Quillspike+Devoted Druid creates infinite power. Paired with Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons or Nest of Scarabs, it also gives an infinite number of snakes! Mikaeus, the Unhallowed sometimes has been in this deck; when he is, he also goes infinite with Devoted Druid. Both pieces of this combo can be fetched with Protean Hulk (thanks for unbanning that, Sheldon!) along with Sylvan Safekeeper to protect the combo.

-- Devoted Druid+Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons+Ivy Lane Denizen generates infinite green mana and infinite snakes. Discovered this combo by accident, heh.

Your best distributors for -1 counters are Harbinger of Night, Midnight Banshee, and Black Sun's Zenith. They will put counters on your snakes too, but your snakes will return if you control Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons (or Nest of Scarabs). Functionally, Harbinger of Night acts like casting Deploy to the Front each turn!

I've frequently netted more than 60 deathtouching snakes before by doing this. Just try to ensure Hapatra has a way to survive the global counters, such as Ivy Lane Denizen or Defiant Greatmaw.

Natural Order frequently grabs Protean Hulk T4 or earlier. This can be enough to close out a game alone against an unprepared opponent.

Smokestack is of course one of the most vicious stax cards ever printed. Just don't forget to use it in the right way: sacrifice then increment the counters, so that you sacrifice less permanents than your opponent.

If a creature has even one counter on it, Vhati il-Dal can kill it - even if it's indestructible! Avacyn, Angel of Hope and Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre cannot stand up the power of Hapatra's poisons!

Triumph of the Hordes forces your opponents into a sadistic choice: if they block, you get more snakes because the infecting creatures deal combat damage. If they choose not to block, even five snakes can prove deadly.

Ulvenwald Tracker is one of the most powerful creatures in this deck. It allows your snakes to Murder almost any threat on the field at instant speed - it's a powerful incentive for your opponents not to attack or mess with you.

Most of the tutors in this deck grab creatures. And while a large portion of the strategy in the deck is learning to tutor for the right thing at the right time, here's a rough outline:

Defense of the Heart usually tutors for Protean Hulk and Sadistic Hypnotist. This does leave a very brief gap for your Protean Hulk to be Path to Exile'd, though. You could include Viscera Seer in the list to remove that possibility. Or you could include Mikaeus, the Unhallowed for the additional combo with Devoted Druid.

Natural Order also usually grabs Protean Hulk, but it can also grab your other combo piece directly or just a useful creature at the time. Eldritch Evolution and Worldly Tutor usually vary heavily based on board state.

Protean Hulk, in turn, usually tutors for Devoted Druid, Quillspike, and Sylvan Safekeeper. Unfortunately there are not any 1-mana creatures that can give haste in Golgari colors, but Sylvan Safekeeper can protect the combo pieces against spot removal.

The other major Protean Hulk combo is to grab Devoted Druid and Ivy Lane Denizen. This combo trades protection (no shroud) for speed (can ignore summoning sickness).

Birthing Pod almost always goes for Ulvenwald Tracker first - after all, he does basically read ", : Murder" when paired with a snake token. After that point, it can tutor for several options.

And your non-creature tutors will often grab Blowfly Infestation for the one-card combo with Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons.

As is typical for me, I started building this about 2 minutes after she was first spoiled, so it's likely the oldest Hapatra deck on the internet :)

What remaining cards would you add/cut?

Now exists as a (slightly untuned) $25 budget deck! Check it out!

$25 Extreme Budget Hapatra EDH

Commander / EDH Daedalus19876


Like the god-pharoah, I shall return!

Give an upvote if you like the deck! support the Snake Revolution!



...this is a MEAN mean mean deck. I love it.

I made five players quit yesterday by staxing them to death.

Comments View Archive

Montanax says... #1

Enough is enough, I've had it with these motherf'ing snakes during my motherf'ing EDH games.

April 13, 2017 8:44 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #2


April 13, 2017 9:22 p.m.

Bhaal666 says... #3

Viridian Corrupter seems lack luster when compared with the rest of the deck. if infect/wither work with hapatra there are stronger sources of those like Corrosive Mentor (should be awesome with Nest of Scarabs), if you want the destroy there are instant speed options like Krosan Grip. Honestly everything else looks fine you could probably not use the any color pain lands but necroskitter could grab a thing that needs red mana or something...

April 15, 2017 2:03 a.m.

Delta-117 says... #4

April 15, 2017 7:24 p.m.

TheRedGoat says... #5

Okay, so what about coming down on tribal synergies and running other snakes? Or even Conspiracy maybe?

April 15, 2017 11:57 p.m.

RazortoothMtg says... #6

I would definitely play Coat of Arms cuz buff snakes are better than small snakes.

April 16, 2017 2:09 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #7

Bhaal666: Thank you for the comment! While I do like Viridian Corrupter, I cut her for Necropede instead.

Delta-117: Yeah, I do need to tinker with the mana base a bit. That being said, I almost never play Temple of the False God outside of a ramp-heavy deck (which this is not).

TheRedGoat: I've currently cut the deck down to only having one "snake tribal" card. It's just too variable how many snakes I possess.

RazortoothMtg: I'll consider it! However, there are several goblin decks in my meta, and I don't want to give them the boost...

April 16, 2017 2:18 p.m.

ohmless says... #8

happy to see an old school card like harbinger of night and serrated arrows in the list. The black ring that gives regeneration might come into utility if you want to protect a keystone creature in your strategy. Ring of Xathrid +1'ed

April 16, 2017 2:41 p.m.

ohmless says... #9

was just thinking the ring of xathrid would be awesome to get extra turns of activations from harbinger of night.

April 16, 2017 2:42 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #10

ohmless: In my testing, Ring of Xathrid has proven to be fantastic (mostly so I can protect my commander from Harbinger of Night and friends). I almost want to run Ring of Kalonia too, but for now I think one is enough...

Thanks for the comment!

April 16, 2017 2:47 p.m.

Bhaal666 says... #11

Your list has been really helpful to me so I'm glad I could help a bit. Necropede seems like a good choice. I was looking through your list again and realized you dont have Concordant Crossroads not really a must but in theory i think the card would be very nice, start of your turn harbinger of night kills a bunch of your snakes and then you get new snakes that cant do anything except block or die at the start of the next turn unless you give them haste.

April 16, 2017 6:44 p.m.

Is there a possibility that an Eldrazi Monument could fit in there for flying and indestructibility? The sacrificing a creature shouldn't be too much of a problem since there are quite a few snakes being produced.

April 17, 2017 6:27 p.m.

AwezomePozzum says... #13

Moar snek tribal! Also, Mikaeus, the Unhallowed? It synergizes very well with all of your -1/-1 counter effects that hit your creatures.

April 22, 2017 10:29 p.m.

AwezomePozzum says... #14

As an example for snake tribal, what about Seshiro the Anointed?

April 23, 2017 4:13 p.m.

Iron_Cube says... #15

AwezomePozzum ; Seshiro the Anointed was on the list before, but was removed. With the exception of the commander, the deck didn't contained many snakes. This decklist focus more on -1/-1 counters and ways to use tokens. Shisato, Whispering Hunter still there because of it's effect that fit a stax subtheme.

It could be fun, but I think almost half of the deck would have to be built differently.

April 23, 2017 9:25 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #16

Bhaal666: I'm glad I could help! I'm just worried that Concordant Crossroads would give my opponents the ability to kill me faster :( It does give me a way to do my second infinite combo faster, though...

DastardlyStache: Yeah, it's one of the cards I really need to add, haha. What would you cut for it? I don't want to cut anything that gives -1 counters, because they're pretty central to my strategy.

AwezomePozzum: Mikaeus, the Unhallowed used to be in the deck, but got cut to lower the curve. I'm looking for a way to put him back in, though, because he immediately goes infinite with Devoted Druid...And Iron_Cube is right. The deck has no snake subtheme without my commander, so anything that completely depends on my commander's ability (and has 6 CMC) was one of the cuts. He's a card I want to add back in, but I'd need to find space.

Thank you all for your comments!! :)

April 24, 2017 3:28 p.m.

In my honest opinion? Probably Culling the Weak, where the extra mana is ok, but in this sort of deck I found it unnecessary. The survivability of boardwipes seems a bit stronger.

April 24, 2017 5:19 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #18

DastardlyStache: Hmmm. I'll consider it. Thanks!

April 24, 2017 5:21 p.m.

Now if you want to go for mana and get quite a bit of it, put a Cryptolith Rite in there so your tokens can tap for mana.

April 25, 2017 12:10 p.m.

puetypoo says... #20

With all of these -1/-1 counters, have you considered Liliana, Death Wielder? She would be a great removal piece for this deck and possibly bring all of your guys back if you're able to ult her.

April 26, 2017 12:32 a.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #21

puetypoo: She's just WAY too much mana for her effects. She'd be marginal here at 4 mana. I'm considering Liliana's Influence, though...

April 26, 2017 1:10 a.m.

Spoosky says... #22

Bitter Ordeal with infinite death triggers ?

April 26, 2017 1:21 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #23

Spoosky: Ooh, I like that! What would you cut for it?

April 26, 2017 1:27 p.m.

Spoosky says... #24

mmm, Ring of Xathrid -> i prefer hexproof boots ot Bitter OrdealCrumbling Ashes -> dont say "you may" is a double edge card.Deadbridge Chant -> is a good card, nothing to say, but in multiplayer you can find tons of removal and is too slow, for this i prefer Necrotic OozeFecundity -> i love this card, but is a enabler for all enemies, i play omnath and i like it.

April 26, 2017 1:42 p.m.

Spoosky says... #25

the last, Walking Ballista, infinite mana, gg.

April 26, 2017 1:43 p.m.

Spoosky says... #26

and you cand use with Mikaeus, the Unhallowed, the curve not is a big problem, you can play with Eldritch Evolution, Natural Order, zenit, and so on.

April 26, 2017 1:45 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #27

Spoosky: Thanks for the suggestions!

The Ring of Xathrid is there so that Hapatra gets a +1 counter at the beginning of my upkeep (to counteract any counters she may acquire due to Harbinger of Night etc).

Crumbling Ashes is pretty awesome in testing so far but I definitely understand the issue with "you may".

Deadbridge Chant probably should come out but it's such good, continuous recursion...

Fecundity gives infinite draws with my snakes dying, but I'll consider removing it.

Thanks again!

April 26, 2017 1:45 p.m.

Spoosky says... #28

April 26, 2017 2:18 p.m.

Oh yeah, Protean Hulk is legal again

April 26, 2017 4:55 p.m.

Also, if you are looking at some recursion, Seasons Past is a great card to have, if you have tutors in your yard, you get them back to look for it again, and repeat. Its pretty strong

April 26, 2017 5:06 p.m.

TearsInRain23 says... #31

I envy your keen eye to deck building. Just so you know.

April 27, 2017 3:19 a.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #32

DastardlyStache: Yeah, Seasons Past is awesome.

TearsInRain23: Awww shucks, thanks man :)

April 27, 2017 2:49 p.m.

shub says... #33

Plaguemaw Beast seems like a decent fit.

April 27, 2017 6:54 p.m.

cmsrDPM says... #34

I saw it earlier but want to emphasize Necrotic Ooze. Your deck already runs the combo with Quillspike and Devoted Druid. Now you can do it with one creature: THE OOZE!

April 30, 2017 10:36 p.m.

I got Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons in my booster box and was wondering what kind of deck could be made with her. Leave it to you to be the one to show me.

May 6, 2017 2:27 p.m.

ChubyCryBaby says... #36

"Man, I hope there is withered in this deck!"Bam, Wither. Other's to possibly consider Creakwood Liege Quillspike and i know I'm missing a withered creature or two :-/

May 6, 2017 4:46 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #37

shub: I'll look for a slot! :)

cmsrDPM: I'll think about it! But this deck doesn't have much use for infinite mana, so I think it's a tiny win-more...

SaifurCommander: I hope you enjoy her, she's super awesome! :) Glad I could help inspire you.

ChubyCryBaby: Creakwood Liege used to be back in this deck but eventually came out. Quillspike is in here though :)

May 6, 2017 5:27 p.m.

shub says... #38

Decimator Beetle looks like the weakest link: equivalent casting cost, only adds/moves a single counter at a time, attack trigger is as slow and more conditional than a tap effect.

May 6, 2017 7:28 p.m.

Daedalus19876 Would you mind taking a look at my decks, see what you think? You've looked at one of them before, I don't remember which, but I've been tweaking and tinkering with them a lot over the last few weeks and enjoy your input.

May 6, 2017 9:09 p.m.

Interesting build, +1.

May 7, 2017 2:48 a.m.

Beebles says... #41

Hey there,

I like the list. Looks like a lot of fun, especially at that budget. I had the following thoughts when looking at the list. Perhaps there is something there that matches your vision for the deck!

  • How is the consistency of the deck so far? I ask because you seem to be quite low on ramp or draw. Might not be that much of an issue because of your low curve, but if you find yourself out of steam in games too often, you could consider cards like Deathreap Ritual or Regal Force (that last one is great with the creature tutors you're playing).
  • If I had this deck I would immediately put in Kamahl, Fist of Krosa. Overrun and land destruction in one card!
  • I would probably run Genesis Wave over Seasons Past given your curve (you might not get that many cards with seasons's past, since most cards are 0-4 mana). Also, it does not rely on the graveyard (so if you become the target of graveyard hate, it's still great).
  • If I had this deck I'd probably run one more creature that deals with Song of the Dryads kind of effects since this deck is so dependent on your commander. Besides wickerbough elder, you might want to have one more tutor-able target to deal with that situation, like Terastodon or Acidic Slime (especially given the fact that you run one as well, which can be redirected).

Hope there's something useful there. Good luck!


May 8, 2017 2:04 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #42

Beebles: Hey! Thanks for your comment!

I used to have both Regal Force and Deathreap Ritual in here. Ritual might make a return, but Regal was just too conditional :( Necropotence also used to be in the deck but honestly the triple black is really rough. Despite the relative lack of draw, though, the deck actually has proven to have very high consistency. The deck plays 9 tutors (and I'm looking for space for two more), as well as several pieces of recursion.

Ooh, I hadn't thought about Kamahl, Fist of Krosa here before. I'll take that into consideration!

I'm going to have to pass on Genesis Wave here, though. The targeted nature of Seasons Past is awesome, and most of my combos happen to have multiple CMCs. I love the card, it's proven its worth so many times (though you're right that it hurts being hit with GY hate).

This deck isn't SUPER dependent on its commander (it can still stax its way to victory without her, and she can be replaced by Nest of Scarabs in the combos). Contrast for example, Zada, Hedron Grinder, where the deck simply falls apart without my commander.

My deck runs four cards that can hit Song of the Dryads, and while that is somewhat low, one of those four can be hit by most of the tutors in the deck. I haven't had my commander hit by Song yet, but if it does become a problem I'll add more removal :) I should add Command Beacon, though, since the deck relies on Hapatra quite a bit...

Thank you for the comment!! :) If you like the deck, you're welcome to give a +1 (I'm trying to push the deck to +100, haha).

May 8, 2017 2:21 p.m.

Beebles says... #43

Sure, np. Feel free to have a look at my decks as well. I could always use some extra eyes on my dracogenius build. That deck is just very hard to balance out for some reason.

Good points about Seasons Past. Makes perfect sense now. And yeah, command beacon seems great here, since you're likely to play hapatra over and over again. Makes a big impact with a 2 mana commander. I also like to play Aspect of Mongoose in my green decks for protection. Might be good with Hapatra as well.

Anyway, nice that there was something that you haven't considered before.

GL & HF,


May 8, 2017 2:57 p.m.

Triton says... #44

The first thing that comes to my attention is the land base, the only two lands that I think of that I'd recommend adding are Temple of Malady and/or Tainted Wood. Idk if this has been suggested previously, but Grave Pact and/or Dictate of Erebos are other rather staxy cards depending on how much sacrifice is in the deck.

Otherwise looks solid! I will assist you in getting to 100 upvotes if I haven't already!

May 8, 2017 3:30 p.m.

Wolfrage76 says... #45

Could use a Cryptolith Rite and I'd consider a Diabolic Tutor instead of your Worldly Tutor but it's a trade off on CMC. Nice deck, adding to my list of "wanna build".

May 9, 2017 10:37 a.m.

gdm1989 says... #46

Have you thought about using Vigor, Sensei's Divining Top, and Walking Ballista a friend informed me that vigor can work well with the tokens. So I was thinking, why not also use walking ballista to machine gun the snakes when vigor is out and buff them to high heaven? It could be a infinite combo or I could be wrong.Mirri's Guile and the top can also fix your draws plus they only cost 1 mana to bring out

May 9, 2017 12:33 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #47

Triton: I'll definitely grab a Temple of Malady for the deck! I'm not too much of a fan of Tainted Wood, though, because it's backfired for me too many times. Grave Pact and Dictate of Erebos are great cards, but I didn't want to make this deck too similar to my Yahenni build :( And thank you for your comment and upvote, as always! ;)

Wolfrage76: I wish I owned an Earthcraft, it would be perfect here :( I need to get another copy of Demonic Tutor and Vampiric Tutor for this deck, agreed. Thank you for your comment and upvote too! :)

gdm1989: While Vigor is a great card, it doesn't fit into this build very well :( Walking Ballista is a very conditional card, and Mirri's Guile/Sensei's Divining Top do very little without shuffle effects (of which there are relatively few). Also, all four of those cards are a lot of money for pretty weak effects in this deck...Thank you for your comment anyway though! :)

May 9, 2017 1:09 p.m.

gdm1989 says... #48

how about Diabolic Intent? It's kinda like a poor man's demonic tutor

May 9, 2017 3:29 p.m.

khayoz says... #49

Daedalus19876 just played your list online, so awesome! Had a blast playing it and considering buying it on paper, have you made any further changes to it lately?

May 13, 2017 5:15 a.m.

LeonGraves123 says... #50

I really love your list, and I want to play it myself, though there are a few cards i'd really like to see in the deck and i'm having just as much trouble finding the places for them. I'd like to see cryptolith rites, walking balista, jarad lich lord, concordant crossroads, and mikeaus make the list.

May 17, 2017 5:06 a.m.

LeonGraves123 says... #51

also no cauldron of souls, or puppeteer clique?

May 17, 2017 5:07 a.m.

gdm1989 says... #52

So I tried this out on paper but I added Mana Crypt, Volrath's Stronghold, Skithiryx, the Blight Dragon and Phyrexian Tower instead which have been useful to me but I might remove the crypt and the dragon and add Bitter Ordeal a shame Blightsteel Colossus isnt useful in this due to high mana cost. However Kamahl, Fist of Krosa is the real deal in this deck try it out :)

May 17, 2017 12:25 p.m.

guard5 says... #53

could you recommend a stax-less package for this deck?

May 18, 2017 3:08 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #54

LeonGraves123: I'm glad you like the deck! :) Of the cards you highlighted, Cauldron of Souls and Mikaeus, the Unhallowed definitely could find slots. Cryptolith Rite is also something that might work, though the mana curve is low-ish in the deck and it's better to avoid tapping your snakes. I usually don't like Concordant Crossroads much, because it gives your opponents so much advantage... I'm not sure. But the issue really is that the slots are tight. If you wanted to reduce the stax aspect of the deck you could remove some of them for these additions...or maybe Dusk Urchins? If you like the deck, upvotes are always appreciated :)

gdm1989: I wish I had an extra crypt for this deck :'( And I'll try finding a place for Kamahl, Fist of Krosa! And as I said above, if you like the deck, upvotes are nice ;)

guard5: If you wanted to remove the Stax from the deck, I'd add more combo cards (particularly Mikaeus, the Unhallowed and tutors). Fair warning that any deck that plays with -1 counters is going to be relatively staxy by its nature...

May 18, 2017 7:46 p.m.

guard5 says... #55

Thanks for the reply, I have never played commander before and Hapatra is going to be my first deck, so I dont really know which cards are actual stax cards besides smokestack of course.

May 19, 2017 12:15 a.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #56

guard5: Ah. Well Stax can mean any one of several things, but it's always tied to resource limiting or denial. So Smokestack, Mind Slash, Sadistic Hypnotist, etc could be considered Stax pieces. I think they elevate the deck to a high degree, but it depends what your playgroup considered to be "fun" and "fair" :) Let me know what I can do to help!

May 19, 2017 12:50 a.m.

Spoosky says... #57

infinite combo mana + Walking Ballista? works with Mikaeus, the Unhallowed also

May 23, 2017 12:46 p.m.

Daedalus19876 says... #58

Spoosky: I'm not running it because I have too many combos already, heh. Walking Ballista is a dead card outside the combo (and doesn't work with Mikaeus, the Unhallowed unless you have a free sac outlet).

May 23, 2017 3:31 p.m.

gdm1989 says... #59

idk if this will work but if it does then time to exploit it Phyrexian Obliterator?

May 24, 2017 12:31 a.m.

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