Having Doubts

Commander (EDH) forum

Posted on Oct. 29, 2018, 12:12 p.m. by Phaetion

Basically, I've recently had a trend of being targeted, even though some games I never did much, and it's getting very annoying (and giving me an undying hatred of Aminatou, the Fateshifter)

I've decided to scrap everything and build something new...

...but now I got this self-doubt that makes me think whenever I take a deck idea, asking myself (will I get targeted even if I have nothing?). Worse, I have no emotional attachments to any of my decks, and it bothers me more than it should.

Currently, I'm deciding between Admiral Beckett Brass and Pir/Toothy while thinking about a casual take on Kess, Dissident Mage. Even then, I look at each of these and that question appears again. Any ideas are welcome, but I really don't want to use options that are dependent on my general/commander choice. Thanks in advance.

ZendikariWol says... #2

First off, not a soul is going to believe you're playing a casual Kess deck. No one in their right mind. And pirate tribal doesn't really have enough support to go hundred-card singleton.

In the end I say Pir and Toothy. I love me some +1 counters and counters have a tendency to be viewed as slow (and, by entension, harmless) by people who don't play counters. I have a deck you could borrow some ideas from if you'd like to brew it.

October 29, 2018 1:37 p.m.

DrukenReaps says... #3

Of these choices I would second Pir, Imaginative Rascal and Toothy, Imaginary Friend for being a deck that is strong but not seen as competitive.

As for being targeted even when you have nothing this is more about table politics and your reputation as a player. Both my groups have learned that even when I'm sitting on two lands on turn 5 if left alone I can still win. Or at least cause a lot of damage before I go down, I've done exactly that over and over.

I think you probably just need to up your political game. Point out that you don't even have anything and that other guy with an infinite combo in his deck could go off at any time.

You may also consider running cards that allow you to make friends in the game or make you harder to go after. Group hug will sometimes get you more targeted but most people like Rites of Flourishing. Pillow fort things like Propaganda are generally amazing vs token decks.

October 29, 2018 2:11 p.m.

Pieguy396 says... #4

I third Pir and Toothy, but also second considering group hug / pillow fort. Kynaios and Tiro of Meletis are rather good at making people not hate you, especially if you're generous with your group hug.

October 29, 2018 2:18 p.m.

ZendikariWol says... #5

Idk, I think while group hug would be nice, it also has a reputation for hiding a dirty secret or two. My group hug deck always gets hated out of the game after I pulled a Swords to Plowshares on a 27/27 Realm Seekers with a Felidar Sovereign on board.

What I'm saying is playing group hug, rather than being inconspicuous, can be conspicuous because it looks like you're TRYING to be inconspicuous. Was that insanely convoluted? Absolutely. But you get it right?

October 29, 2018 2:23 p.m.

Phaetion says... #6

DrukenReaps, Pieguy396, ZendikariWol: Seems like the consensus is Pir/Toothy. I'm also reconsidering resleeving the Breed Lethality precon and go from there, but going 2 colors is tempting. Again, any other ideas worth considering would be great.

Also, politics was never something I'm good at. I'm not the talkative type so much, which already places me at a disadvantage, and it's also why I avoid group hug. I'd be running Kynaios and Tiro of Meletis in that case.

October 29, 2018 2:29 p.m.

ZendikariWol says... #7

If you can't do group hug, then... how about kingmaker?

October 29, 2018 2:37 p.m.

Phaetion says... #8

ZendikariWol: I'd rather not. :/ That's a recipe for getting hated out sooner or later.

October 29, 2018 2:44 p.m.

DrukenReaps says... #9

Since politics is not your thing and you are open to options how about full on pillow fort?


It needs a secondary strategy to back it up but it makes you difficult to go after. My Divine Decree is a good example. I can't say that you want to copy the 'bleed' portion of the deck as that gets me targeted every game but the pillows allow me to keep having fun even when the whole table turns on me.

Get something like Ajani Steadfast's emblem active and combat becomes a laughing matter. Glacial Chasm just stops all the damage so even Fireball does nothing. Of course the ultimate pillow is Gideon of the Trials emblem...

There is even two new commanders that are interesting for pillow fort, Thantis, the Warweaver and Varchild, Betrayer of Kjeldor.

Another option is to suggest your group does team games instead of free-for-all. with 4 players you can do 2 headed giant, 5 players you can do secret partners, and 6 players you can do emperor.

October 29, 2018 3:47 p.m.

Phaetion says... #10

DrukenReaps: Well, I just might add Thantis to my list.

October 29, 2018 5:12 p.m.

Screw it. spend $2,000 on a Kess deck and make them rue the day they crossed you!

October 29, 2018 6:02 p.m.

killroy726 says... #12

If your worried about being targeted and possibly gong the pillowfort route. Consider cards like Imperial Mask, Greater Auramancy, Sterling Grove and just go crazy with enchantments. The benefits being they are harder being removed unless the go specifically for enchantment removal. take a look here if you are interested The mighty-est of pillow forts!

October 29, 2018 7:40 p.m.

ZendikariWol says... #13

I would argue that destroying the opponents' ability to interact and deal with your threats would get you hated out of the game even faster. Especially if they know you're playing pillow fort, people with just target you from the get go.

October 29, 2018 7:47 p.m.

killroy726 says... #14

I think we are talking about hate from one particular player, not necessarily the whole play group. And obviously some people are just going to ignore threat assessment (which annoys me to no end) so you cant win for loosing no matter what you do.

October 29, 2018 7:54 p.m.

Phaetion says... #15

ZendikariWol: Wouldn't Thantis count as such? I imagine it might, but I'm curious.

I'm finding it hard to leave Izzet behind, and artifice just doesn't have that appeal spellslinger has. :/

October 29, 2018 9:18 p.m.

ZendikariWol says... #16

Are you referring to Thantis, the Warweaver (which, yes, does draw quite a lot of hate by the way) as an izzet creature? Either I'm misreading the conversation or you have the wrong creature. Either way get back to me, I'd love to help any way I can, as a fellow player who gets frequently hated out.

October 30, 2018 9:28 a.m.

Phaetion says... #17

ZendikariWol: Good thing I built Pir/Toothy then.

Thantis? Izzet? You probably misread it. I was saying I'm finding it hard to let go of Izzet, and I'm looking to build 3 more decks so I have more options. I'm tempted to return to using the Kenriths, but with a less combo-orientated view, though I don't know how that will work out. Brudiclad, Telchor Engineer was another one, but I know that's something you kill on sight.

October 30, 2018 3:38 p.m.

ZendikariWol says... #18

Are you loving the colors Izzet or the feel of Izzet? Do you want to have Izzet colors in it or be JUST Izzet.

October 30, 2018 7:20 p.m.

Phaetion says... #19

ZendikariWol: I'd say the feel. I love all the creativity that goes into how they play. If only there was a Izzet option that embodied that without taking 10 minutes a turn.

October 30, 2018 9:16 p.m.

ZendikariWol says... #20

If you're looking for flavor-over-power commanders, there are a lot to consider. Since innately political decks are... clearly off limits for you, I'll stick to more 'fun build-around' commanders.

Daxos the Returned could be a really fun casual deck. Especially creatureless! I'm brewing it soon.

Ezuri, Claw of Progress is a commander I have had tons of fun with. He allows for interaction on the board and he's far from invulnerable, but he can hold his own and there are a stunning amount of sweet 2-or-less-power creatures.

Najeela, the Blade-Blossom is a neat warrior commander. Tribal is always fun! Come to think of it, there are a million sweet tribes you could build, if you'd like me to go into detail that's fine but idk this comment is gonna be long already.

Nekusar, the Mindrazer is a totally casual deck that is known for drawing no hate at all!

Marchesa, the Black Rose is super casual and could be a whole pile of fun!

Emmara, Soul of the Accord tap shenanigans is actually super strong and idk what your meta looks like so...?

Feldon of the Third Path can hold its own and is also a big ol' heap of fun.

Karlov of the Ghost Council is a powerful enough commander, insane when built ideally, but can also be super casual!

Brion Stoutarm looks super casual and fun.

Exava, Rakdos Blood Witch could be a neat self-harm/aggro list if you want something a little mindless that still has some synergies.

Some of the partner combinations could be super neat as well? Idk.

Also if you have questions on any of these, everything I've suggested, I have a brew for either upcoming or presently.

October 31, 2018 12:06 a.m.

MagicalHacker says... #21

This may have already been mentioned, but I figured I'd say it just in case it hadn't.

For a lot of people, threat assessment includes the commander's infamy as a part of the equation. And what's more, it tends to have a bigger role than it probably should.

Something I have done to have more wins is to purposely choose commanders that fly under the radar, which I have defined for myself as any commander with fewer than 600 decks on EDHREC. Feel free to make that number whatever you feel most comfortable, but the idea is to power up the 99 with a commander that hides the true power of the deck.

October 31, 2018 12:34 a.m.

Phaetion says... #22

ZendikariWol: I ran a few of these, and I either got hated (Daxos), experienced others getting hate (Nekusar), fear of getting hated (Najeela, Marchesa), among others. I might try Exava with a +1/+1 theme but I doubt there's enough support to try and pull it off.

MagicalHacker: It's weird you say that because the decks I used that day, were below 600 on EDHRec. I have a soft spot for the Kenriths, being way under 100 decks. Problem is, when they go off, their turns can take forever. Going superfriends, not running The Chain Veil would solve this to a degree, but is there some take on the deck where turns are quicker?

October 31, 2018 3:26 p.m.

MagicalHacker says... #23

In that case, I don't think that attacking you based on your commanders is happening here.

As for making their turns shorter, no, but I don't think that long turns are necessarily that threatening. It seems like it could just people that don't like opponents taking long turns, even when it's justified.

October 31, 2018 5:23 p.m.

Please login to comment