Search your library for a card and put that card into your graveyard, then shuffle your library.
|Have (4)||, metalmagic , lorddarkstar , CompleteWaste|
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|Commander / EDH||Legal|
Latest Decks as Commander
15 minutes ago
This was hard, extremely so: this was very nearly sixteen commanders. Black is well-suited to stand alone, and there are so, so many good choices that I’ve developed a newfound respect for anyone who tries to top ten black. This is almost my favorite color, and while it may be limited in dealing with anything not a creature, graveyard, or a card in hand, good GOD can it deal. All the tutors, all the kill spells, creatures of the night, what music… Sorry, it’s easy to go full Dracula in this area of the pie. In summary, I’ve a lot more to say on this subject than the colors we’ve already covered. However, as always in this project, the point is to celebrate three thematic elements, not drool over all the ludicrous power in this necrotic slice of the pie. Today we’re limiting ourselves to three pervading archetypes: life, death, and graveyard manipulation.
White is a respectable powerhouse in this arena, but black takes center stage with undeniably better style. Whereas white just gains it, playing black means treating your life total as just one more resource to use, abuse, and exploit. Vampirism, folks, and not the glittery sort either. Cruel, properly thirsty vampirism, all about chugging opponents like cheap beer. And if you enjoy masochistic chicaneries that trade life for cards, removal, mana, and eventually victory, look no further.
This guy. This glorious, ludicrous guy. General damage? Check. Lifelink? Check. Game-warping mechanic? Great big ol’ hissing, honking, ball-biting check. A peak, high performance example of boom/bust gameplay. Just be sure to draw as many cards as you can and pray that you find quality lifegain to patch the holes you’ll be blowing in yourself.
Here’s the thing: in mono-black, whenever you gain life it’s at someone else’s expense. An effect that doubles said expense? Please and thank you. board wide Lifelink? Also yes. Throw down some grunts, swipe right, and watch your peanut gallery of jerks like the Blood Artist heckle opponents to death.
You know what’s a great defense, command damage notwithstanding? A huge life total. This is partly why red struggles in EDH: hard to beat down someone with piles of life and a few choice defensive options. In some ways it’s just as hard to vampire them to death. You know who doesn’t care? Erebos. Old Erebos is singularly unimpressed by new Heliod’s jank, and happy to sweeten the deal with reliable draw for a modest fee of mana and life.
The past few years have seen respectable creature removal cropping up even in blue and green. White has oodles of fantastic board wipes, and red can hose everything down with direct damage. But compared to black, they’re all posers. Shrinking creatures, sacrifice and discard are all primarily black stables. Toxic Deluge laughs at your indestructible legions. Grave Pact is amused by your shroud, and will bury you in it. This is the color of Go for the Throat , Diabolic Edict , and Tragic Slip . When black comes for your minions, you better have a mountain of solutions, otherwise the only way to save said minions is to take them off the field yourself.
Spoiler alert: three of the Kamigawa ascendants are going to feature in these articles, and Kuon is the meanest (since the blue one got banned, anyway). I speak from gleefully shameless experience here. For the low, low price of three creatures and a modest downpayment of another every turn, black sacrifice stax can be yours. Add fun things like Magus of the Abyss , Dread Return , and Fleshbag Marauder and all his rude, rude cousins. Trust me on this: Kuon is, if you’ll pardon the pun, enchantingly nasty.
Very few things like boardwipes. However, provided they’ve had a snack first, Yahenni likes them just fine. An affordable commander with a sac outlet (indestructibility on a stick :D) who actively rewards slaughtering anything that could block? Sold! Throw in Fallen Ideal . You won’t be sorry.
In my last article I referred to blue as the heavyweight champion of yoink, but that’s not to say there aren’t other colors in the ring. Forcing opponents to sacrifice creatures and discard cards are both black staples, and boy howdy does Tergrid reward such misbehavior (though the adorable Tinybones, Trinket Thief may be more a discard fiend's speed). If tokens aren’t in the local meta, this will change that.
Green shares a bit of this glory: there’s a pervasive theme in green of both exiling and returning cards to the hand from there. BUT… Black is still the unequivocal graveyard color, leaving the charge in both filling and emptying it, especially of creatures and onto the field. Bojuka Bog . Animate Dead . Living Death . Green may have some good tricks here, but few so dirty as an Entomb followed by Reanimate . So, so dirty. I saw it only once, but it was a turn two Terastodon . Once was enough.
Reanimator decks got you down? Here’s a bone, friends. Stealing your opponent’s guys is one thing. Exiling said guys when their owners wipe your stolen board is another. Chainer doesn’t like choices. Chainer likes it all. And Chainer, above all else, loves to break your opponent’s heads with their own toys.
Convinced I like Kamigawa yet? I used to play this janky beast in a standard spirit deck. These days, my thoughts run first to a big pile of Shadowborn Apostle and assorted demons, but that’s just the easy first on the list of tricksy things up Shirei’s sleeve. Again, Blood Artist and friends. Again, deeply unhappy opponents.
Here’s horror for you. Anyone who doesn’t admit to a healthy bout of nervousness when this guy hits the field is a liar (or playing Orbs of Warding . Coming or going, yours or theirs, killed or milled or discarded, if the graveyard is involved then the good syr gets his ping. Have yourself a time with any number of silly combos and tactics: your opponents are guaranteed a Tortured Existence .
And, for my personal favorite...
I ran Marrow-Gnawer for a time, but offloaded it when I realized that I was bored by the deck. A few years later I built Kuon, who quickly became infamous in my playgroup. However, aspects of the deck that I particularly enjoyed were better served when I switched to this villainous wench. With a decent draw effect (especially with Thornbite Staff ) and an imminently breakable ping engine, Ayara is BRUTAL with proper support. Endrek Sahr, Master Breeder . Army of the Damned . And the game-winning monstrosity itself, Plague of Vermin . Revel in countless bodies to exploit as only black can and watch your opponents die of Ayara’s approval.
That's it for this round. Thoughts and questions are welcome. I hope you enjoyed it, and will come back next week for Red!
10 hours ago
1 week ago
Kaeladin: Heya! Lemme try and answer all your questions :) Welcome to the best format in Magic -- and I'm glad my primer could inspire you!
1) This deck can do fine in a "no infinite combos" meta, though it depends what precisely that definition entails. I would shift the deck to have more "staxy" elements (so re-adding Ashen-Skin Zubera and Burglar Rat , etc), and focus on killing via Gray Merchant of Asphodel lines (with potentially a few extra clones). However, the deck DOES aim towards infinite combos in its current iteration, and avoiding infinite combos will tend to make you more commander-reliant, which also means you'll need more counters and protection. Note that the wheel + Hullbreacher lines aren't "infinite" but still might make people angry XD
2) The "Fresh Fish For Cheap" list cut most of the $20+ cards, and that's the best place I'd start with. I haven't updated that list, but Araumi hasn't gotten many new toys in Kaldheim/Strixhaven. The biggest additions from MH2 which I want to test are Unmarked Grave , Persist , and Dauthi Voidwalker -- which all should be cheap-ish, I believe. Apart from Hullbreacher and potentially Entomb (which I'd highly suggest keeping), everything above $20 in this list can be cut immediately, without any big problems -- run basics over fetches, and perhaps a few more Fleshbag Marauder effects. Oriq Loremage is great, as is Mystic Reflection .
3) Hrm. The biggest thing is that Araumi can be built in a thousand different ways -- she works well with just about any good ETB creature XD You could do things like include Gyruda, Doom of Depths or Sower of Temptation to steal more cards, clones to double up on good spells, etc. I would emphasize cards which says "for each opponent, do X" or "for each X you control", which "multiply" well with multiple copies. Sac outlets too, especially if you cut Phyrexian Altar -- maybe Legion Vanguard ? I hope this helps, Araumi is SUPER open ended and you can tune her to basically use whatever creatures you enjoy!
Please let me know if there's any other questions you have!
1 week ago
Daedalus19876 Hey there! I LOVE your primer; it's well-written and it has inspired me to look at running Araumi as my next commander choice!
Quick preface before going into some questions; I'm a pretty new Commander player (coming from Modern and Pioneer background) and I've been looking at a few decks to make a small "commander stable" over time.
Using this deck as a template (and also your Fresh Fish for Cheap ($250 Budget Araumi) as another reference), I wanted to ask you a few questions about how to tweak/modify this deck in case I wanted to modify for certain rules.
1) No infinite combo(s) rule: Let's say I'm playing in a more casual pod where this rule is instituted. What would you immediately sub out from this decklist and what would be good options to put in that would allow you to play a more relatively "fair (even if it's still graveyard shenanigans!)" game? Bonus points if the sub-in options are sub $20 at max!
2) Tailored budget considerations: For that matter, what would be some good options to sub out the >$20 cards in this list? The most obvious ones that I can tell, from quick pricing, are:
- Gilded Drake , Hullbreacher , and Spellseeker
- Entomb , Mana Drain , and Fierce Guardianship
- Mana Crypt and Phyrexian Arena
- Naturally, the expensive lands (fetches, Volrath's Stronghold , etc.)
3) General theme of "powering down/creating more flair": I'm a huge fan of the 75% deck mentality, and I'd love to be able to modulate the deck to power up or down (mostly down based on this current decklist). Taking out the pricier cards is probably one of the most obvious ways to "power down" the deck, but what would you recommend in terms of other card substitutes (i.e. if I wanted to be able to side out/in certain cards just to add more flavor)? This whole theme is generally tied into the previous two questions, but this is just more picking your brain at this point!
Thanks so much for your work!
2 weeks ago
Tireless Provisioner: more expensive Lotus Cobra that can store the mana for later
3 weeks ago
While Unmarked Grave is definitely a welcome addition to reanimation archetype in Modern, I feel this is a really watered down version of Entomb (conditional searching on top of higher CMC and slower Sorcery speed). I think they missed the opportunity to just introduce Entomb itself in Modern. With all the efficient Graveyard removal legal in the format, do they still think Entomb will cause problems?
3 weeks ago
Maybe Culling the Weak can be your replacement for Burnt Offering.
I like Bolas's Citadel because it combos with Sensei's Divining Top or Necropotence to win. A lot of people run Aetherflux with that combo but I cut Aetherflux and I have never not wok with just the Citadel and Top or Necropotence.
Razaketh, the Foul-Blooded is a card I haven't yet added but intend to.
1 month ago
Also, if you've dropped the coin on Entomb s, then there are more "Gold Hands":
- 1x Swamp, 1x Culling the Weak, 1x Entomb, and 1 of any GY-to-Play spell is a Gold Hand
- 2x Swamp, 1x Entomb, and 1x Exhume is a Gold Hand
It's worth noting that both of these new Gold Hands with Entomb are also only 4 cards, not 5 like the others (since you don't need a creature off the draw); that's why I suggested dropping an annihilator instead of another card - but I'd have to playtest with it to be completely certain. Doing so would leave you a lot more options for protecting the combo (even Unearth is nice, since you can discard Dread Return via a discard creature, pull more lowbie target(s) from the GY with Unearth, and then use Dread Return's flashback so that you've never had to pay the original casting cost).