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- Bereaved Survivor + Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia
- Elas il-Kor, Sadistic Pilgrim + Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia
|Commander / EDH||Legal|
|Commander: Rule 0||Legal|
Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia
Legendary Creature — Human Wizard
At the beginning of your end step, if you control no creatures with decayed, create a 2/2 black Zombie creature token with decayed. (It can't block. When it attacks, sacrifice it at end of combat.)
1 week ago
Am I able to order the effects of Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia and Jon Irenicus, Shattered One in such a way as to create the 2/2 Decayed Zombie token first and then give it to an opponent with Jon Irenicus?
2 months ago
Having built a similar, but different end-result deck myself, I can appreciate and understand the struggle. You're on the right track, sorting cards into sac fodder and sac engines. I also had a third category, for sac profits, that rewards you for boardwide sacrifices, exactly like your commander is doing.
For renewable, repeatable sacrifices: There's an infinite zombie fodder generator in Gravecrawler and Carrion Feeder. You can also use Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia to get a daily zombie to toss. Grafted Wargear is a fun way to repeatedly sacrifice, preferably after attacking. Witch's Oven also lets you sacrifice after creatures aren't useful anymore. Priest of Forgotten Gods is pricey but rewards you for having lots of sacrifices.
As for single use tactics, Bone Splinters is a good spell. Shriekmaw sacrifices itself. Ordeal of Erebos would do well here as well, as it sacrifices itself after building, and would sac early due to the global counters.
Lastly, Hindervines would do great to block all combat damage once your creatures get even a single +1/+1 counter.
Best of luck!
3 months ago
I thought I would try my hand at creating an article series centering around the beauty of different card designs, as each card truly is unique in its own way, and I wanted to make my appreciation of that into a tangible form so that everyone could experience it.
A general outline of how this article series will go is this: a basic introduction (similar to what you’re reading now), cost versus effect, the flavor of the card, how the card interacts with its limited environment, cards that are similar to it and a short little blurb on what makes them different, a custom card inspired by the analyzed card and a short explanation of the process used to create it, the legacy of the card, and finally, a conclusion to round it all out.
That being said, let’s begin!
The card of today’s analysis is Dreadhorde Invasion, a card I chose to kick off the series with not only because War of the Spark is my favorite set, but also because it will give us a good platform to walk through the steps of this article series.
Dreadhorde Invasion is an oft-overlooked card that provides its user with a Zombie Army (a mechanic introduced and incredibly localized to War of the Spark, excluding a few exceptions such as Lazotep Chancellor) at the cost of a single life each turn. Obviously this adds up quickly, and the Army that is produced is rather clunky, as it is easier to remove (a la Fading Hope), non-evasive, and rather small even in its beginning stages. For it gives you a 1/1 creature on turn 3. That’s not a great payoff, especially for more advanced formats.
This is where the second clause comes in. If your Army can make it to six power, then Dreadhorde Invasion rewards you handsomely with an added lifelink, allowing you to gain back all that lost life and quickly breaking symmetry with your life versus your opponents. It’s not incredibly cost-effective (heck, a Forced Adaptation is more cost-effective in general), but it’s very fun to play with and can provide a lot more when juxtaposed with the rest of the game. But we’ll get into that later.
The flavor of Dreadhorde Invasion is perhaps my favorite part of the card. The Eternals are probably one of the most unique MTG villains (I mean, come on, they’re blue metal zombies that can cross between worlds and steal planeswalker sparks), and definitely one of my personal favorites. The idea of Dreadhorde Invasion is that Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker is executing his plan to become Nicol Bolas, Dragon-God, invading the plane of Ravnica with his army of Eternals empowered by The Elderspell in order to steal the sparks of the planeswalkers, trapped there by The Immortal Sun and invited there by the Interplanar Beacon. The invasion is eventually quelled by a joint effort by Liliana, Dreadhorde General, Gideon Blackblade, Ugin, the Ineffable, God-Eternal Oketra, and God-Eternal Bontu, with the defeat of Bolas wrapped up in the brilliant card Despark. Dreadhorde Invasion more than anything flavor-wise represents the whole of War of the Spark, perhaps better than any other individual card in the set (except maybe Enter the God-Eternals). And that is why I love it so much; it is a testament to my favorite set of all time.
As far as Dreadhorde Invasion’s performance in Limited goes, I must say that it has quite an unitive feel to how it operates in multiple deck strategies, similar to how it unites the flavor of the set. It has the keyword amass on it, which is the new ability introduced in the set, and which synergizes well with proliferate. Zombie Armies themselves receive gracious tribal support in the form of Gleaming Overseer, Eternal Skylord, Widespread Brutality, and the like. Beyond this fairly obvious synergy, however, there are many more options for how Dreadhorde Invasion can function in this set. For example, the creation of a creature every turn lends itself very well to sacrifice strategies revolving around Spark Reaper, Ahn-Crop Invader, and Spark Harvest, or even Liliana, Dreadhorde General and God-Eternal Bontu. In addition, the lifelink that can be attained on later turns goes well with Ajani's Pridemate and fits into a subtheme of life gain that the set has.
Dreadhorde Invasion-style effects are somewhat rare, but there is precedence for their existence. The most obvious example is Bitterblossom, an enchantment well-known for its splashes in Modern and which creates small flying threats every turn at the cost of some life. However, there is also Ophiomancer and Endless Ranks of the Dead, or more recently Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia. The thing that sets Dreadhorde Invasion apart from these other cards is its unique combination of losing life and gaining life alongside its ability to make a token larger versus just creating a new token.
Here is a custom card that I made that was inspired by Dreadhorde Invasion.
The process I went through to design this card went something like this.
1) Look at Dreadhorde Invasion and think about what the card is wanting you to do. What's the general theme of the card?
2) Build a general shell around the idea of losing life to gain life, pulling in inspiration from cards like Bloodghast.
3) Adding a tribal element to make it feel like a Dreadhorde card.
4) Adding a fitting name. "Vowmage" gives a feel of some kind of sacrifice to fufill an obligation, especially to a being like Bolas.
5) Adding flavor text that is both quippy and fits the situation. In this case, I chose to show who the Vowmage's vow is to.
6) Finding some art from DeviantArt that fit the theme. This art is from user Ryushadow, and is the only Eternal art I could find.
Dreadhorde Invasion, like most of its amass kin, is largely forgotten especially in competitive play where it is not a contending strategy. Zombie Armies are incredibly weak to removal and usually aren’t very cost-effective, so their weakness of being a single lone creature that just gets bigger and can be chump-blocked can’t really be ignored. War of the Spark as a whole is a largely forgotten story arc, and despite its misgivings it’s still a shame. Dreadhorde Invasion does not truly have a legacy, though it was reprinted in the Midnight Hunt commander set as a part of Wilhelt, the Rotcleaver’s commander deck. Hopefully, one day, we will see Amass return in a future set with greater support so that Dreadhorde Invasion may one day be viable.
Alright, everyone! That is the end of my article for today. Please let me know what worked for you and what didn’t so that I can sculpt this new article series to your feedback!
Speaking of user feedback, I would like to have every tenth card be voted upon by the community. If you want to submit an idea for what card we will go over, just let me know in your comment. The comment with the highest number of upvotes will have their card in the tenth article of the series.
Thank you all for the wonderful community we’ve made together! See you soon.
3 months ago
Here are some suggestions:
Card Draw: Laelia, the Blade Reforged, Morbid Opportunist, Keep Watch, Breya's Apprentice, Moonveil Regent, Smothering Abomination, Reconnaissance Mission, Necrologia, Future Sight, Kothophed, Soul Hoarder, Will Kenrith, Harvester of Souls, Ruin Grinder, Deepfathom Skulker, Sandstone Oracle
Targeted Removal: Rapid Hybridization, Wild Magic Surge, Terminate, Resculpt, Reality Shift, Forbid, Daring Apprentice, Transmogrifying Wand, Ravenous Chupacabra, Chaos Defiler, Glorybringer, Mystic Confluence, Necron Deathmark, Reaper from the Abyss, Rowan Kenrith, Curtains' Call, Duplicant, Meteor Golem
Synergy: Ghoulish Procession, Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia, Drana, Liberator of Malakir, Blight Mound, Braids, Arisen Nightmare, Fleshbag Marauder, Gravelighter, Irenicus's Vile Duplication, Magus of the Abyss, Anowon, the Ruin Sage, Ruthless Winnower, Ogre Slumlord
Threats: Quietus Spike, Elturel Survivors, Relentless Assault, Gratuitous Violence, Sarkhan the Masterless, Westgate Regent, Precursor Golem, Necropolis Regent, Walk the Aeons, Combustible Gearhulk, Embercleave, Sharding Sphinx, Angrath's Marauders
4 months ago
Cultist of the Absolute is a massive stat boost.
Mass Hysteria might be able to replace Hammer, but I'm not sure if you want to risk making your opponents have that option.
4 months ago
Zulaport Cutthroat and Blood Artist will help to streamline your mechanic while reducing your costs. Bone Shards, Village Rites, Deadly Dispute all have an additional cost of sacrificing a creature which also factors into your theme. Morbid Opportunist helps to draw more on your triggers while Ghoulish Procession helps to extend each body for extra triggers/damage. Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia also has value here in that he can allow you to gain life and drain life.
Also, welcome to the game!!
5 months ago
Some cards that might help you:
Mayhem Devil, Goblin Bombardment, Carrion Feeder (especially alongside Gravecrawler), Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia, Dreadhorde Butcher, Bloodghast, Cauldron Familiar (alongside Witch's Oven), Priest of Forgotten Gods.
5 months ago
Mareless the deck does look a lot stronger. My current suggestions would be:
personally i’d ditch Duress. The card feels like it’s a sideboard card at-best, as it’s only ever really going to be useful versus combo decks - in all other situations you’ll be better off presenting a threatening boardstate. I’d suggest moving it to your sideboard to add in one more each of Carrion Feeder, Goblin Bombardment, and Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia.
I’m really not sold on Evolving Wilds. It’s only very rarely going to fix your mana, but a lot of the time it’s going to cost you a lot if tempo. I’d ditch them and just play Swamps in their place. You have good odds of finding the colours you need - but the tempo loss from running Evolving Wilds will hurt you way more than help you.