Debt to the Deathless

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Legality

Format Legality
1v1 Commander Legal
Block Constructed Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Casual Legal
Commander / EDH Legal
Commander: Rule 0 Legal
Custom Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Highlander Legal
Legacy Legal
Leviathan Legal
Limited Legal
Modern Legal
Oathbreaker Legal
Pioneer Legal
Vintage Legal

Debt to the Deathless

Sorcery

Each opponent loses two times X life. You gain life equal to the life lost this way.

griffstick on Teysa, Ghostly instigator

3 months ago

Debt to the Deathless is lifegain and a win condition

Guerric on Teysa, Orzhov Scion: Life and Death

5 months ago

Hi wideline1414! I've been playing Teysa for years, and have had at least three distinct variations of the deck. She's definitely one of my favorite commanders, and the version I'm playing now is very powerful whereas the second incarnation of the deck ended up playing terribly. I am working on writing a full primer for it, but I write very full and ambitious primers and I haven't quite got the time to commit to it yet. I think my biggest piece of advice is that Teysa can do a lot of things, but she can't do everything well, so you really need to focus on the way you want to play her. She can be a great honest token deck, an aggressive and powerful multi-combo deck, an aristocrats deck, or an orzhov goodstuff sort of deck, but she can only do one of these well.

The original version of the deck was a relaxed Orzhov control deck that focused mostly on generating white tokens and using Teysa's exile ability as a sort of threat to get people to leave me alone. I had the Darkest Hour in the deck as a way to win, but I didn't rush towards it, and I usually won via token pump cards like Jazal Goldmane and Mirror Entity. I also had lots of boardwipe and interaction that Orzhov is good with, as well as a bunch of token generating Elspeths, and it could grind out games real well. I really enjoyed the relaxed approach of the deck, but felt like I wasn't getting the most out of Teysa's ability since I didn't have a ton of black token generators, so I set about to rework it to get more value.

I started out well by adding Chittering Witch, Sengir Autocrat, Dreadhorde Invasion, and a bunch of other black token oriented cards. I still run these cards today. Where I went wrong was in stuffing way too many expensive good stuff cards like Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite and K'rrik, Son of Yawgmoth. My mana curve became accordingly less palatable, and I just found the deck was trying to do too many things to really get anywhere.

Third time's a charm as they say, so I cut most of the good stuff and pretty much all of the token pump support to lean more heavily into combo-control with a life-gain subtheme. The great thing about the Darkest Hour combo is that there are so many cards that support it that are also good on their own, so I made sure to have lots of sac outlets, a few aristocrats, Blasting Station, and both Ashnod's Altar and Phyrexian Altar to make infinite mana to power mass drain spells like Debt to the Deathless, Exsanguinate, and Torment of Hailfire. I also put the Reveillark/Karmic Guide combo in for another combo route. The deck can win without these cards by just draining people out, possibly with mana generated by Smothering Tithe and Pitiless Plunderer, but combos are the thing to go to. My favorite part about all previous versions of the deck were abusing Bolas's Citadel and Necropotence, so I added in the soul sisters, Daxos, Blessed by the Sun, and some other lifegain stuff to support this. The deck as is getting to the point where I won't play it as often with my playgroup because the win rate is getting pretty high.

I like the current version of the deck best, but you should do what is good for you. I'd just focus. If you want to care about attacking with spirit tokens, then by all means play Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite, Jazal Goldmane, and others. Just try to keep your curve low and have lots of token generators and sac outlets. In my first version of the deck I played most of the Elspeths, and even in the current one I still play Elspeth Tirel and Elspeth, Sun's Champion and they rock the house. If you want to lean into combo or aristocrats, you might want to play fewer of the above cards.

If you are interested in my current list, you can find it here- https://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/teysa-combo-with-superfriends/?cb=1645410923. Hopefully in the next month or so I'll finally get to the primer! Until then, happy magic, and enjoy the best Teysa!

Icaruskid on Return of the Queen (Long May She Reign)

6 months ago

Great theme song! I like the style of what you've built here and would play it as-is right now!

Some notes:
- Breena isn't card draw. It's a good card though. Also your monarch cards count as card draw. ;)
- Faithless Looting would be better if you were running Reanimate or recursion spells. Night's Whisper might be better.
- Mythos of Snapdax is OK but probably hits your own permanents harder than you'd like. Consider Blasphemous Act, Vanquish the Horde, Wrath of God or my latest personal favorite Promise of Loyalty there. Those still hit your creatures too but on an empty board monarch shines.
- Open the Armory is good but Fighter Class was built for Sunforger.
- Everyone has their own preference for win conditions in control decks. Debt to the Deathless, Exsanguinate, Torment of Hailfire, Master of Cruelties, Approach of the Second Sun, and Revel in Riches are all popular. One I found recently that might be interesting is Near-Death Experience. It needs support cards to make it work but they are spicy like Stunning Reversal and Plunge into Darkness. It also pairs with Master of Cruelties and life swap spells. This list is a good example for more ideas is you like that path.

Here is my Queen Marchesa deck with its own theme song (less original than yours). You might like it.

Have fun ruling the battlefield!

ClockworkSwordfish on Criminally Underplayed EDH Gems

7 months ago

No shortage of 'em, that's for sure...

Hull Breach: The same card advantage of Return to Dust and at the same speed... but for half the mana. It's a common, too. How this two-for-one superstar was ever forgotten was beyond me!

Blood Frenzy: Mono-Red is somewhat lacking in hard removal. Sure it can throw direct damage at creatures, but EDH is the world of big plays, and sometimes a fattie will come along who is simply too big to burn. Blood Frenzy can kill any attacking or blocking creature for just two mana - while coming with a free Scorching Missile! This type of card takes advantage of the multiplayer format that EDH often is: If Player A attacks Player B with a big creature, you can use Blood Frenzy to make the creature hit Player B for four more points while conveniently disposing of it right after. Whoops, you just did Doom Blade better than black could ever dream of.

Aftershock: Blood Frenzy is cheap and powerful but a little specific in what it can target. Aftershock can flat-out destroy any permanent of the three most common types with no restrictions! This kind of versatility at four mana comes with the acceptable caveat of 3 life, which is a pittance when you start with 40. If you're making a mono-red deck, the flexibility of Aftershock should make it a staple.

Repopulate: Graveyard hate for decks without access to black - and it's an instant, so you don't lose the element of surprise like if you run artifact solutions. It can also fight against milling effects if you're desperate. Don't need graveyard hate? Hey, you can just cycle it away for something else!

Kill Switch: Playing a colour that can't deal with artifacts? Crank this guy every turn and you'll shut them all down! A Blightsteel Colossus is only scary if it can move. You can even still use mana rocks and attack with artifact creatures on your turn, then activate Kill Switch afterwards to keep anyone else from having access to their own trinkets.

Duskmantle, House of Shadow: Does anyone in your playgroup run Cruel, Enlightened, Mystical, Personal, Sylvan, Vampiric or Worldly Tutor? How about Harbingers, Volrath's Stronghold or Momir Vig? It can be comforting to have an anti-tutor just sitting in play, making mana when you don't need it.

Mitotic Manipulation: Monoblue can't do mana acceleration, right? Under most circumstances, Mitotic Manipulation is three mana to put an Island into play untapped - last I checked, that's better than the ever-popular Wayfarer's Bauble. Plus, once in a while you might get to pull out a Sol Ring, Gilded Lotus or other format staple if one of your opponents already has theirs.

Coalition Honor Guard: Long before Spellskite was zooming the toys away from Boggles decks, this unassuming common was doing the same. The Honor Guard is a nightmare for any Voltron-style deck that leans heavily into auras, including the common Zur and Uril builds. It also soaks up removal that would be pointed at key cards, such as your own commander.

Warping Wail: This counterspell can be played in any colour and even has some other modes. Any EDH deck without access to blue can still run this to prevent untimely board wipes, extra turns, and plenty of game-ending cards: Debt to the Deathless, Exsanguinate, Finale of Devastation, Genesis Wave, Insurrection, Rise of the Dark Realms, Torment of Hailfire... any number of effects you never want to see your opponent resolve.

Heat Shimmer: This mundane-sounding sorcery can do some heavy lifting, particularly in a colour pie as shallow as red's. Shimmer allows you to bring the heat by copying not only the best comes-into-play trigger on the field, but also any fun triggers from attacking, dealing damage, and so on. This can be a roundabout way for red to ramp, draw cards or borrow the nasty abilities of Resolute Archangel, Terastodon and other off-colour haymakers. Don't forget you can also get a permanent copy of your token if you Populate it before it's gone.

Bind: The best cards are often not only powerful but completely unexpected. Green isn't exactly known for its countering, but this cheap cantrip lets any mono-green deck stop combos, hose Strip Mine/Ghost Quarter, prevent a planeswalker ultimate or turn Aetherflux Reservoir into a losing proposition. All this for two mana and it even replaces itself!

Arena of the Ancients: We all know Karakas is banned for hosing commanders too hard, but the Arena does a decent impression and is still fair game. This cheap artifact can tap down even commanders with hexproof or vigilance and keeps them locked down - especially useful for colours that don't typically have strong control options, like black and/or red. It's another easy answer to voltron commanders.

Righteous Aura: This card doesn't read as too impressive, but performs a lot better than you might think. 2 life is a pittance in the face of some of the steroid monsters you'll see in any given EDH game, and it allows you to ignore Commander damage entirely as well as any other non-creature or even non-permanent threats that might take a chunk out of you. Best of all, it doesn't even target, allowing it to bypass hexproof, shroud and protection.

TypicalTimmy on Dawnglow Incineration

8 months ago

legendofa, well firstly Debt to the Deathless already exists :3

And secondly, Boros helps complete Naya, which is what I was aiming for. But I can see it dealing damage to creatures and Planeswalkers but not players. But my issue with that is spells such as Lightning Helix already exists, so it makes sense to slide into that territory, even if only was used.

StopShot on What's Your Favorite Spooky MTG …

9 months ago

Debt to the Deathless. Most cards from Seb probably work, but this was my favorite card when I first started playing, so I’m ranking it above the rest.

rb701 on Azorius Spirits - Modern

11 months ago

Guardian of the Guildpact, Soulsworn Jury, Stoic Ephemera; good defensive creatures that are still tribal that could be included. i'm sure there's a spirit creature token generator fits the color restrictions in here... the only one i know of is Honden of Life's Web, but that's green. while there is lots of cheap creatures to keep up the aggression early to mid game, i don't see anything for the big win. just about any deck (except shield-burn for an obvious reason) will have something to force the gate open. for example, i have a decent orzhov (BW) passive bleed deck with lots of cheap cast cards, but use Debt to the Deathless as a stand-alone or Cliffhaven Vampires + Ready / Willing to turn the game violently in my favor. doesn't have to be big, flashy, or expensive, but something that says "deal with it or you lose"

i would definitely recommend, however, putting in a couple Leonin Sun Standards in for the group boost; it's cheap, it's effect is decent, and demands an answer

Guerric on Regna/Krav lifegain

1 year ago

Krav and Regna are great and this looks fun. I run some of these in my Teysa, Orzhov Scion deck and run Krav and Regna themselves in my list. Just curious if you've thought about using Exsanguinate , Torment of Hailfire , or Debt to the Deathless as they all synergize with the life gain theme and can close out games, particularly with Black Market or Smothering Tithe which you're running. You probably wouldn't want to run all of those in your list, but at least one of them as an alternate win con could be nice.

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