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Yahenni: There are Benefits to Dying

Commander / EDH Control Mono-Black Voltron



A Yahenni control deck with a small voltron package. As a 0 activation sacrifice outlet, Yahenni makes a great commander for a "death matters" theme. The deck uses token producers to provide fodder for Yahenni and other sac outlets for value. Multiple cards, including Yahenni, accrue value over time from creatures dying.

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In order to make Yahenni indestructible and trigger all the other dying matters cards, the deck includes many sacrificial lambs. The deck includes token producers and creatures that can reanimate themselves from the graveyard.

Ophiomancer can create a new deathtouch snake each upkeep to provide sac fodder for Yahenni's indestructibility.

Bloodghast, Nether Traitor, Scrapheap Scrounger, Relentless Dead, Bloodsoaked Champion, Endless Cockroaches, and Reassembling Skeleton easily bring themselves back from the grave for repeatable sacrifice effects.

Grave Titan is a black staple that can repeatedly create sac fodder for Yahenni.

Animation Module can repeatedly create servo tokens for sac fodder while also pumping Yahenni

Yahenni does a great job of getting big without much help from equipment. However evasion is very helpful for connecting and some protection is helpful.

Blade of the Bloodchief gets out of hand really quickly. Yahenni gets a total of 3 +1/+1 counters for each creature dying.

Rogue's Passage, Shizo, Death's Storehouse, Whispersilk Cloak, Loxodon Warhammer, and Trailblazer's Boots help Yahenni connect.

Lightning Greaves, Swiftfoot Boots and Whispersilk Cloak are protective staples.

Lashwrithe and Strata Scythe provide a massive power boost with lots of swamps in play. Blackblade Reforged gives an even larger boost based on total number of lands we have.

The deck includes a lot of removal to trigger all the death matters cards.

Attrition: very effective in this deck as it can machine gun enemy creatures with the deck's tokens and pumping Yahenni.

Board Wipes

Crux of Fate + Damnation: cheap black boardwipe staples

Decree of Pain: can net a massive amount of cards.

Phyrexian Scriptures: boardwipes and then exiles opponents' graves, stopping any graveyard shenanigans.

Pestilence: effectively prevents opponents from playing their creatures since they don't want them destroyed with pestilence. Great attrition card.

Deadly Tempest: punishes opponents for getting greedy with too many creatures.

Oblivion Stone: also clears the board of artifacts and enchantments which black struggles with.

Massacre Wurm: great against token armies with potentially devastating life drain.

Vona's Hunger: This can effectively be an instant speed boardwipe (that doesn't hit us) with the City's Blessing. This can really swing board states.

Targeted Removal

Hero's Downfall, Murder, and Murderous Cut: unconditional single target removal.

Curtains' Call: 2 for 1 removal that is often very cheap.

Malicious Affliction: has the non-black downside but morbid is very easy to trigger, giving 2 for 1 value.

Go for the Throat: has non-artifact downside but still very efficient at 2 mana.

Fleshbag Marauder: edict effect that gets around indestructible and hexproof creatures.

Ob Nixilis Reignited: flexibly can either draw cards or destroy a creature.

With all of the sacrifice fodder and removal spells, loads of creatures are going to be dying. The deck is designed to accrue incremental value from all this death.

Grave Pact, Dictate of Erebos, and Butcher of Malakir: Repeated edict effects that keep the battlefield clear of threats. Especially oppressive with Bloodghast, Reassembling Skeleton, etc.

Black Market: Quickly ramps up with all of the removal in the deck.

Blade of the Bloodchief: As mentioned above, this equipment quickly gets out of hand, loading up Yahenni with +1/+1 counters.

Grim Haruspex: Easily turns into repeatable card advantage with creatures like Endless Cockroaches, Reassembling Skeleton, Bloodghast, and Blood-soaked Champion repeatedly dying and coming back.


Updates Add

One new card from Dominaria, but many other changes: Phyrexian Scriptures. A four mana boardwipe that protects a creature and then exiles opponents' graves. That's great value.

I have done a massive revision of the deck. I found the life drain theme took away from my main game plan: killing stuff and swinging in with Yahenni.

I've thrown in more boardwipes and creatures that reanimate themselves (like Nether Traitor. I find these give me more value than one-shot token generators like Sengir Autocrat and Abhorrent Overlord as the tokens would just die to boardwipes without any way to self-reanimate them.

The new additions:


Phyrexian Scriptures, Crux of Fate, Vona's Hunger, and Pestilence


Nether Traitor, Relentless Dead, and Scrapheap Scrounger


Burnished Hart and Worn Powerstone


Strata Scythe, Shizo, Death's Storehouse, and Loxodon Warhammer


Compare to inventory
Date added 6 months
Last updated 1 day

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 3.22
Tokens 1/1 Servo, 0/0 Germ, 2/2 Zombie, Nixilis
Folders De todo, Oloro, collstuf, edh ideas, Interesting Commander Decks, Uncategorized, cool decks, Good EDH Decks, Interest, cool decks, See all 12
Top rank #6 on 2017-12-01
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Revision 30 See all

1 day ago)

-1 Toxic Deluge main
+1 Succumb to Temptation main
+1 Innocent Blood main
-1 High Market main
+1 Cabal Stronghold main
-1 Necropotence main
-1 Innocent Blood maybe