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Yahenni: There are Benefits to Dying

Commander / EDH Control Mono-Black Voltron



Artifact (1)


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.

Josu Vess, Lich Knight spews out a massive army of zombies with evasion.

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 Key to the City 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

Toxic Deluge, 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.

Nevinyrral's Disk: sweeps away permanents that black struggles with.

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 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 and Smothering Abomination: 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

This deck often generates a ton of mana. I've added a couple more mana sinks that can serve as additional win cons. Also added a couple more Dominaria cards:

Josu Vess, Lich Knight: Great mana sink. The zombie army's menace can make this card a win con. Provides lots of sac fodder for Yahenni too.

Torment of Hailfire: Another solid mana sink that is on theme with the deck by forcing opponents to sac their board or shed their life totals.

Blackblade Reforged: Can't believe I missed this one previously. It gives a massive power boost for relatively little mana. On theme with Lashwrithe and Strata Scythe.

Cabal Stronghold: Not nearly as good as Cabal Coffers as it only counts basic swamps. However, early testing has shown it can still give a decent mana boost in this mono black deck.

Sword of the Animist: This replaces Burnished Hart. For less of a mana investment I find that this card tends to fetch more swamps since the deck wants to be swinging with Yahenni anyway.

Yawgmoth's Vile Offering: On the fence with this one but trying it out. I like that it's a two for one and it is easy to meet the legendary requirement with a cheap (and usually indestructible) commander. 5 mana may be a little clunky though.


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Date added 8 months
Last updated 1 week

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 3.20
Tokens 1/1 Servo, 0/0 Germ, 2/2 Zombie, 2/2 Zombie Knight
Folders De todo, Oloro, collstuf, edh ideas, Interesting Commander Decks, Uncategorized, cool decks, Good EDH Decks, Interest, cool decks, See all 15
Top rank #6 on 2017-12-01
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Revision 48 See all

1 week ago)

-1 Pestilence main
-1 Puppeteer Clique main
+1 Succumb to Temptation main
+1 Patron of the Vein main
-1 Razaketh, the Foulblooded maybe
-1 Succumb to Temptation maybe