Havoc Festival

Havoc Festival

Enchantment

Players can't gain life.

At the beginning of each player's upkeep, that player loses half his or her life, rounded up.

Latest Decks as Commander

Havoc Festival Discussion

Mana_Mythic_Legendary on Pursuing Perfection, Part 8: Rakdos …

2 months ago

Brothers, sisters, and assorted non-binary siblings, welcome to the riot! You like throwing waves of frothing, hasty lunatics at your opponent AND profiting when said lunatics die? We got you! You like watching the world burn and don’t mind getting caught in the flames? We got you! You like anarchy? The purge movies? Gender reveal parties? We got you! Rakdos is the proud home of those who take pleasure at the expense of others, the sort of people who like to mix Skittles and M&Ms in the same party bowl. If that sounds fun, then just you wait: in the house of red and black, that sort of misbehavior is only the appetizer.

Haste and sacrifice. Vampirism and burn. Discard in both barrels. This is a beautifully synergistic color pairing that belongs in the same league as peanut butter and chocolate. Heath Ledger’s joker undoutably played a rakdos deck: things like Havoc Festival, Last One Standing, and Sire Of Insanity are all up the clown’s alley. There are a number of themes we can cover here, but as usual we’re settling for three: Discard, WAAAAGH, and Pain. As always, please bear in mind that the point isn’t a discussion of the competitive but rather as a celebration of the thematic.

Discard

This is both red’s primary draw resource and a uniquely black removal technique. Combining those aspects makes for a deck that both ruins opponent’s hands and digs through your own cards at shocking speed. Granted, you won’t have a big hand, but who cares? Suddenly you've got an overpacked graveyard at your black-hearted beck and call. Red self-mill and black reanimation, people, with just a naughty touch of haste. Discard a pile of hate and then pitch said pile straight into combat. You won’t be sorry.

Chainer, Nightmare Adept

A regular teddy bear, Chainer’s second coming is a real treat for anyone who left their graveyard hate at home. Haste on a stick is only a perk: suddenly your graveyard is only as full as you want it to be, and probably full of friendly, group-huggy things like Ravenous Chupacabra or Combustible Gearhulk. Yes, the table will certainly love you and your unending, undying deck of unbearable hellbeasts. Undoubtably.

Malfegor

Ok, this guy is horrifying, as you would expect of the king of Grixis. Anyone not running tokens is going to be mighty twitchy about seeing this guy hit the field, and who needs a hand anyway? Rakdos evidently loves empty hands, and rewards you for ensuring that particular misery has company. Consider, if you will, the fulsome, vicious suite of cards tied to poking those who discard. Consider Experimental Frenzy. Consider all the madness cards you could play (or, you know, just play Anje Falkenrath instead). And, if you get tired of the simple gains synergy can win you, you can always Demonfire someone.

Blim, Comedic Genius

THIS. This is neat. Leave aside the look on the face of that certain someone who steals everything on the board. Pay no mind that Seize the Day and all it’s red cousins can make Blim an unholy terror. Forget that you can pass off Demonic Pact, Grid Monitor, and whatever other obnoxiousness you can think of. None of that matters, no. This, for all you glorious nutters out there, is an excuse to finally play Nuisance Engine. That’s the takeaway here.

WAAAGH

Anyone can run tokens or big creatures, but only in Rakdos do you find the conjunction of boardwide haste and sacrifice. Harnessing right, proper WAAGH energy means not just drowning opponents in a tide of zippy little shits but also capitalizing on all that death to cause even more mayhem. Did you ever want to hold a bundle of fireworks, light them all at once, and watch whatever you point them at turn into a smoking, shredded pile of giblets? Here’s the lighter, fellas.

Juri, Master of the Revue

Treasure tokens. Nuff said.

Garna, the Bloodflame

There are a number of nasty combos here that I’d rather not spread. I’ll just say that long ago, I played many, many depressing games against a Karrthus, Tyrant of Jund deck. There was self-milling involved, and Living Death. Evidently, someone decided what the deck needed, rather than burning, was fewer moving parts. That someone deserves a long, interesting life in all the worst ways.

Kardur, the Doomscourge

This guy makes me laugh. The idea of ruining the table’s carefully laid plans to off you and instead throwing them into combat with each other is absolutely hilarious. It’s like a Fog designed by someone with pyromania-by-proxy syndrome, and that second block of text the equivalent of throwing gasoline on an already burning house. Get a Conjurer's Closet in there and watch the fun.

Pain

Forget destroy effects. Those are too easy. Direct damage. -X/-X. -1/-1 counters. Life loss. All of the nastiness you can fling at opponents and creatures is under the umbrella of this color pairing. If you like blasting the unholy hell out of your opponents and their minions, this is the arsenal you’re looking to plunder. Stuff like Blasphemous Act, Toxic Deluge, or Orcus, Prince of Undeath will leave a smoldering crater of a battlefield, across which you’ll doubtless be stepping with appropriate gribbliness. Or launching that demonfire we talked about. Whatever works.

Kaervek the Merciless

Ah, the original Mr. Stop-Hitting-Yourself. I’ve had my eye on this guy for over a decade. Do I own the deck? No. Do I intend to? Again, no. But the prospect here is so, soooo satisfying to think about. To hell with infinite combo fruitwaffles. Damned be those green jackasses ramming X cost spells down the table’s collective throat. Kaervek’s mean, but keeps it clean. Like, nuclear fire sterile clean, and the best part? It’s all self-inflicted!

Rakdos, Lord of Riots

We really can’t talk red-black without discussing demon himself (hehehe). This guy’s been piloting one of my decks for years, and for good reason. The lord of riots likes to pass out rewards for smacking people. Do you like to be rewarded for smacking people? I do. Rewarded with free things... Eldrazi things. Eldrazi things that tutor more things (Conduit of Ruin), reanimate more things (Artisan of Kozilek), or… well, you can always go for broke and just ruin someone else's things (Void Winnower). Run artifacts, like Hangarback Walker. Run X drops, like Maga, Traitor to Mortals. Run anything you like. Run everything you like. Just have fun running them for next to nothing.

The Scorpion God
-1/-1 counters, magic’s analogue for injury and agony. We really shouldn’t talk red-black without talking about Wither, the Everlasting Torment of a keyword that was a precursor to the dark days of Infect. It’s safe to say we all have opinions, for good or ill, about Infect’s place in commander. That said, if you want to play with -1/-1 counters and aren’t fond of green or dealing with those opinions, Scorpy’s first line of text makes this guy an overwhelmingly safe bet. Rocking crap like Black Sun's Zenith is the easy answer: let’s make this fun, discard a crapload of cards, and watch your opponent’s boards melt into obscene card advantage while your Archfiend of Ifnir giggles in the corner.

And for my personal favorite...

Xantcha, sleeper agent

There is an unfortunate element of “screw you in particular” to Xantcha: declaring open season on somebody’s life total sends a particularly unpleasant message. This is another commander that, laying aside the card advantage, doesn’t bolster your deck, which makes for an interesting challenge. I’ve said it before, one hallmark of a good deck is the capability of functioning without its commander… though if you build this hateful beast, I suggest you pack lots and lots of ramp. Just ‘cause.

That's it for this round. Thoughts and questions are welcome. I hope you enjoyed it, and will come back next week for Gruul!

Prior Articles:

Dimir

Azorius

Green, with links to the other mono-colors

Orpheus124 on Mogis be Toxic

2 months ago

Love this kind of thing, it’s so mean! I’m a little sad to see no Havoc Festival or Sulfuric Vortex, though. They work here nicely! +1!!!

B33lz3bub on Kaervek, the Merciless

2 months ago

Taking something out of a deck is the most headache inducing activity ever with which I'll probably be of little help, however I can point you to some additions that you can make. (although, I would probably take out the spellbombs as well as stalking vengeance and nettlevine blight, because of their big mana cost) I have created a Kaervek deck of my own recently, and although I'm still in the process of perfecting it, it seems that a healthy diversity of creatures and enchantments is the way to go. Damage doubling creatures such as Angrath's Marauders and Sower of Discord are a must, as well as small but efficient pingers like Immolation Shaman and Scab-Clan Berserker, but arguably the most leg work goes to enchantments such as Furnace of Rath, Manabarbs, Citadel of Pain, Spellshock, Pestilence and most especially Havoc Festival. If you have the budget Master of Cruelties, Wound Reflection and Painful Quandary completely lock the game, with or without Kaervek being on the board. Toralf, God of Fury  Flip would be great addition as well. Hope this helps

legendofa on Best objectives for deck idea: …

5 months ago

I had another deck concept this morning: Use the cascade from Flamekin Herald to cast Resurgent Belief for a big pile of enchantments. I'm looking for some direction to go forward with this idea. Budget isn't a serious concern, but it should match the competitiveness. I don't want to put a $300 card in a casual jank deck. Similarly, I tend to play toward the lower end of the competitive EDH scale. I like to win, but I like to mess with the game and try new things just as much. Uniqueness is more important than victory, as long as victory is possible.

Right now, I see two ways to design this thing. First is straight enchantment combo, something like Havoc Festival + Wound Reflection that just wins the game. Second is Voltron, using something like Eldrazi Conscription and Rage Reflection .

I'm also not sure where to go with the commander. I'm looking hard at a partner set. Sets that support the Voltron line are Kediss, Emberclaw Familiar + something , or Bruse Tarl, Boorish Herder + pretty much anything at MV 2. Akiri, Line-Slinger is on color and MV 2 for the cascade, but the ability doesn't offer much. So basically, I need a partner set that includes:

  • a very cheap (MV 2) option
  • + color identity
  • something that reasonably interacts with enchantments or Voltron

The commander consideration is also related to how the enchantments are getting into the graveyard in the first place. There aren't any huge, game winning enchantments with cycling. Wheels give away free cards in this setup. Self-mill might be the way to go.

Also, if anyone has any specific card suggestions to help the core concept, please throw them in, too. This deck is more or less a Living End variant for enchantments in EDH.

MunchingAberration on It Doesn't Get Much Better Thantis

6 months ago

Heyo! Evil Artifact/Enchantment destruction: Cindervines , Storm the Citadel , Decimate , Hull Breach , Casualties of War - there's a billion, but those are efficient/flexible/fit in your deck. Keep in mind Jeleva, Nephalia's Scourge though...

Other random things that might be good: Gruul Charm (first effect fits the deck, second good against Norin the Wary Sight of the Scalelords (Most of your spiders have 4 toughness, and Thantis forces you to attack as well, so vigilance is great) Havoc Festival ...depending on how insane you want to make things. It's a card. lol

FormOverFunction on None

7 months ago

griffstick I understand AND agree with your point, but I can’t stop grinning to myself at the thought of watching the MLD-player scramble, attempting to not die to a Havoc Festival after finally getting to cycle the Decree of Annihilation he/she has been holding since the beginning of the game.

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