|Commander / EDH||Legal|
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|Commander 2013 (C13)||Uncommon|
|Masters Edition (MED)||Common|
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Look at the top five cards of your library. As many times as you choose, you may pay 1 life, put those cards on the bottom of your library in any order, then look at the top five cards of your library. Then shuffle your library and put the last cards you looked at this way on top of it in any order.
Lim-Dul's Vault Discussion
4 days ago
Oloro_Magic Thanks for the feedback. I definitely see what your talking about, NDE is a secondary win-con for the deck. It does work wonders with both Lim-Dul's Vault , and Necropotence . Granted, the Ad naus will be the primary way I want to win, but I have to anticipate that it will be hated out in my meta. As for the Angel of Grace I agree she doesnt really work well in here. Maybe some niche instance where I can reset my life to 10 can help somewhere, maybe something better might be needed to flash in a blocker.
5 days ago
Narset, Parter of Veils is a great way to limit your competitive opponents. Especially if you pair her with a well-timed Windfall . Ashiok, Dream Render happens to be another way to punish people for playing tutor-tribal kinds of strategies.
Another hallmark of competitive decks is their ramp, especially zero and two-mana. In your description, you say you want to stay budget -- unfortunately, that rules out about all of the good zero mana ramp. ( Mox Tantalite is bad, and Mox Amber is hardly better most of the time.) So I suggest increasing your two-mana ramp, and maybe including Ancient Tomb if at all possible to speed up their presence on the board. Some to consider: Talisman of Progress , Talisman of Hierarchy , Talisman of Dominance , Coldsteel Heart , Fellwar Stone , Mind Stone , Everflowing Chalice , Prismatic Lens , etc. None of these should be more than a few bucks.
Concerning your lands: I think you're running too many, especially if you add some of the ramp mentioned in (3). I'd cut four-ish, maybe five. Generally, once you have a few (3 - 4) lands, you'd rather have a rock and a land in hand than just two lands, since you can cast the rock without using your land-drop. I'm not sure HOW budget you want to keep this deck, but Mana Confluence and City of Brass are each around $10, and they're great in any three or more color deck. Pain lands ( Caves of Koilos , Adarkar Wastes and Underground River ) are better than your tapped lands like Sejiri Refuge , as far as I can tell.
I think a reanimation package is probably better than running Show and Tell . Show and Tell is symmetrical, and is often actively dangerous to resolve in EDH, when everyone is trying to do busted stuff. I'm much more a fan of Buried Alive and Entomb to get your fatties in the bin, and then using Animate Dead , Dance of the Dead , Reanimate and/or Necromancy (which is $$$ for some reason) to get them back.
Tutors like your Demonic Tutor are good, but like zero mana rocks they tend to be pricy (see Vampiric Tutor and Enlightened Tutor ). One I do suggest is Lim-Dul's Vault , which is only a couple dollars these days. It also happens to be instant speed, which is kinda dumb-powerful, if you ask me.
Cumulative upkeep was designed to make powerful effects transient; however, Aminatou, the Fateshifter sorta changes that equation with her -1. Consider cards like Mystic Remora , which you can blink to keep around relatively indefinitely. Similar cards to consider are: Musician , Phyrexian Etchings , Tidal Control and Infernal Darkness (if you're particularly mean).
Divining Witch is interesting -- I'd actually never seen that card before. If you're trying to exile your deck and win with your Jace, Wielder of Mysteries , I think Demonic Consultation is probably a better way... though you might want to keep both. Another method (that I think is worse) is to use the card Doomsday , which is only a few dollars. The problem is that if you run Doomsday , you'd likely want to run a Doomsday -package, so you could win by just casting it and drawing into your top card... For that, I'd suggest talking to someone smarter than me, as I've never been able to get the hang of what the hell is going on with that strategy. All I know is that the package usually has something like Gitaxian Probe and Lotus Petal and ends with me being dead.
You may have good luck with card draw spells. Repeatable effects, like Phyrexian Arena and/or Dark Confidant , tend to be expensive; luckily, the spell versions are often decidedly less so. I suggest running a few or more of the following: Painful Truths , Night's Whisper , Treasure Cruise or Dig Through Time (running both can be tough since delve can get in its own way), Fact or Fiction , Thirst for Knowledge , Concentrate , Chemister's Insight , Oona's Grace (questionable, due to the high mana requirement), Ancient Excavation (good with the reanimation mentioned in (5)), Archmage's Charm , Chart a Course , Syphon Mind , Deep Analysis and/or Words of Wisdom -- pay extra attention to the instants you can cast on an opponents end step. Another way to do this is simply to steal your opponents' card draw with Notion Thief or Plagiarize .
Lastly, I know its around $11 these days, but I think Counterbalance would be dumb in this deck. Using your general's +1 will let you stack whatever you want on top, which can be especially devastating if you can keep an opponent's general off the board that way.
Good luck man! Love this deck.
2 weeks ago
I know your library is mostly black, but I would add more blue mana sources. You don't wanna open hand 2 or 3 blue cards with no blue mana. Keep it 60/40 instead of 75/25, trust me.
Sidisi, Undead Vizer is good for tutors.
Lim-Dul's Vault will help you find those perfect combos.
Entomb on a Sheoldred, Whispering One turn 1, just to Reanimate her turn 2 is really rude. It's not a zombie, but does fit the theme. Animate dead and dance of the dead are good alternates for reanimate.
3 weeks ago
3 weeks ago
Hey, looks good. Nice stax build especially if it's your first one, but you forgot Sol Ring :)
I think if you're willing to build the manabase around Back to Basics that you should include tutors to get Basics. Otherwise you're playing a worse manabase for the rare chance that you draw Basics.
Land Tax is excellent to make sure you have the basic land type that you need which is especially good with Back to Basics . Adding Tax could also let you add the three Shock lands to the manabase to give you a little more color fixing. Rhystic Study and Mystic Remora are pretty much staple blue draw engines for multiplayer Commander. Token generators: Luminarch Ascension , Bitterblossom and Elspeth, Knight-Errant can be a win conditions. You have life gain to cover Bitter and Ascension looks at each opponent meaning it can be activated quickly. Liliana of the Veil can also be a win condition. Planeswalkers since they give you repeatable value without needing to use mana or tap lands are good with Stasis . Narset, Parter of Veils , Teferi, Time Raveler and Ashiok, Dream Render have powerful static abilities in multiplayer Commander.
Creeping Tar Pit , Dimir Keyrune and Elspeth's +1 can get around Humility letting the creature attack not as a 1/1, but better with flying or unblockable. Cursed Totem is powerful when it doesn't effect you at all since none of the creatures here have an activated ability. Many have triggered abilities, but those aren't affected by Totem.
Cards to consider cutting:
- Ambition's Cost
- Syphon Mind
- Spelltithe Enforcer
- Time Stop
- Leyline of the Void
- Fortune's Favor
- Fact or Fiction
- Mindlock Orb
Cards upgrades to consider:
3 weeks ago
Right. Let's talk Stax.
Zur's Weirding : This is a hell of a card to consider when you have a general that gives you a lot of excess life. Being able to deny opponents any relevant spell is great, and because your opponents presumably don't have as reliable a source of life-gain, it is eventually going to be asymmetric-ish.
Xerox cards are good. Ponder and Preordain are both great cards, since they dig you to lands if you need them or past them if you don't. Brainstorm is especially good with a fetch land, and you run enough fetches to justify its inclusion.
Because you're facing so many opponents, one-for-ones are typically not enough to put you ahead in the game. Swords to Plowshares is one of the only one-for-ones I suggest in EDH (because of its absurd efficiency); I think you should include it. Oblation and Murder are probably not going to put you far enough ahead. I suggest running Supreme Verdict , Toxic Deluge , Wrath of God and friends. If you cut some of your creatures for more enchantment or non-creature artifact-based disruption, these will be especially powerful. If you make all your lands snow-covered, Dead of Winter is also an excellent boardwipe. Also, Cyclonic Rift .
In my Grand Arbiter Augustin IV deck I used to run Approach of the Second Sun as a win-condition... you might want to consider it. However, I think it is probably too slow and too expensive to be a reliable win condition. I think a better win condition would be Jace, Wielder of Mysteries . Planeswalkers are already really good in a stalemate, and Jace, Wielder of Mysteries can produce an insta-win if you resolve Demonic Consultation and name a card not in your deck. (Side Note: You get extra points if you name Atog , Singing Tree or Falling Star with your Demonic Consultation .)
In addition to Demonic Consultation , if you're smarter than me and have the requisite brain-power Doomsday can be a good way to end the game. As implied, I don't really know how to explain Doomsday decks and/or the best way to play them, but I've seen them go off and find it spectacular. Google 'Doomsday EDH Primer' -- I think the first one that comes up (a TappedOut link) is especially good.
As above mentioned, planeswalkers are busted in stalemates or when you have the game on lockdown. Teferi, Hero of Dominaria is a great card-draw engine that effectively costs three-mana, and he doubles as removal. Depending on whether you have ethical qualms about being a monster, he also produces a hard-lock on untapping when paired with Stasis . (Note that Smothering Tithe paired with Stasis also does this). Technically, this can be a win-condition; Teferi, Hero of Dominaria is capable of minus-ing on himself, preventing you from milling out, while you wait for your opponents to concede or draw their decks. Jace, the Mind Sculptor is another great card in a stalemate.
Ashiok, Dream Render and Narset, Parter of Veils are both extremely good in EDH. Narset is especially good if you can pair her with a Windfall , which you should also run. Teferi, Time Raveler is another sort of hate-piece, and I've been very impressed with him. Kaya, Orzhov Usurper can be good in the right meta, and her other incarnation, Kaya, Ghost Assassin is good in a much wider set of situations.
Tutors are a big part of making a good deck great. Demonic Tutor and Vampiric Tutor are the best, but they're very expensive and therefore rather inaccessible. Lim-Dul's Vault , Dark Petition , Mastermind's Acquisition , Diabolic Tutor , Enlightened Tutor and Mystical Tutor are all good, too, and more affordable. Whir of Invention is a good way to utilize your artifacts to find whatever silver-bullet lock-piece you need.
If, as first mentioned in (6), you end up cutting some creatures, Night of Souls' Betrayal is a powerhouse against a lot of decks.
As you're in Stax, you're usually playing for the long-game. This means incremental value is extra important. Search for Azcanta Flip is a great way to improve the quality of your draws. Bitterblossom is excellent for producing blockers/small bodies to poke planeswalkers with, and it pairs REAL well with your Smokestack .
Mana-rocks are the best form of acceleration in your colors. Talisman of Progress , Talisman of Hierarchy , Talisman of Dominance and Dimir Signet are all worth adding, and Thought Vessel , Mind Stone , Prismatic Lens and Coldsteel Heart are all worth at least thinking about. Two-mana rocks are especially good if you pair them with an Ancient Tomb , which is another land to consider. Sol Ring , the best ramp in the game, should go in now. If you increase your artifact-count, you can also run Mox Opal in addition to your Mox Diamond .
You seem a little light on counter-magic. Mana Drain and Force of Will are the gold-standard here, but as such they cost a fortune. Other, more accessible counterspells include: Counterspell , Dovin's Veto , Negate , Dispel , Spell Snare , Spell Pierce , Flusterstorm , Swan Song , Delay , Remand and Cryptic Command .
If you choose to run more mana-acceleration, like those mentioned in (14), cards like Armageddon and Ravages of War can end games. This is perhaps the most brutal effect in EDH, but... you know. Is fun. Cataclysm is a powerful board wipe, though its effect extends past lands and therefore does not leave your board intact. So consider carefully.
I should mention Pox , as I see you're running Death Cloud . Pox is right up there with Armageddon in terms of brutality, though I haven't had as much luck with it -- costing triple black is a bit of a nuisance. I've had a better experience with Smallpox or just straight-up Liliana of the Veil .
I think Rule of Law is strictly better than Arcane Laboratory , as it cannot be killed with Pyroblast or Red Elemental Blast . In my experience, most red decks run at least one of those cards, and being able to dodge them if possible is a not-insignificant bonus.
Finally, the Words cards may be worth it. Words of Wind with Wall of Omens makes a three-mana-an-iteration loop that can, if you're in a favorable position, clean your opponents' boards. Words of Waste is usually good in Erebos, God of the Dead and other direct card-advantage generals' decks, but it may be worth including if you cast Oloro, Ageless Ascetic and draw with him often enough. It'll keep pressure on your opponents' hands real well.
Aright. Good luck man! Oloro was my first general, so I got a soft-spot.
3 weeks ago
So, I have a couple suggestions. I found this deck under the 'help' tab, but your description doesn't ask for help. So please forgive me if I sound presumptuous.
Preordain . Ponder and Brainstorm are already in your deck, and Preordain will help dig to lands if you need them, and past lands if you don't. One-mana cantrips are some of the best cards for getting a deck more powerful. Importantly, running more cantrips means that you can cut a land or two, meaning your deck will have a higher average card power.
Your mana-base has room for improvement. Watery Grave is great, especially if you end up running fetch lands. Zendikar/Onslaught fetches like Polluted Delta or Misty Rainforest are easily the best fetches, but slow-type like Bad River and Rocky Tar Pit can also be useful. Also, consider Prismatic Vista . With a high concentration of land-based shuffle effects, Brainstorm becomes more and more powerful. Evolving Wilds and Terramorphic Expanse are good substitutes. Sunken Hollow and Fetid Pools are also fetch-able. Other duals, like Underground River , Morphic Pool and Choked Estuary are also good.
In non-green EDH decks, artifact ramp is of prime importance. Talisman of Dominance , Fellwar Stone , Mind Stone and Thought Vessel are all great. Two-mana rocks are significantly better than three-mana rocks in EDH, as by the time you have three mana you usually want to do more powerful things than cast a rock. Additionally, if you end up running Ancient Tomb or Mana Crypt (which are hard to get ahold of), you can land a two-mana rock turn-one. Mana Vault also happens to be busted.
In magic, it happens that it's a LOT easier to exile your deck than an opponent's. Jace, Wielder of Mysteries works great in Doomsday -style decks; if you're smarter than me, you can probably use Doomsday to tutor up your infinite mana combo. More simply, you can just cast Demonic Consultation with Jace, Wielder of Mysteries on the table, naming a card not in your deck (I generally use Atog or Singing Tree ), and then draw a card to win. So you may want to include Demonic Consultation and/or Doomsday , the latter if you have a lot of power in the brain-thingy.
I see you're running Ashiok, Dream Render ; I love that card. Narset, Parter of Veils is also worth running, especially if you choose to include Windfall . Narset's been kicking ass in Vintage recently, and I have found her to be completely nuts in EDH.
I may be missing something, but I am unsure as to why you're running Seat of the Synod and Vault of Whispers . If you had a Mox Opal in the list they might make more sense, but as things stand I think they're just worse than Island s and Swamp s. Back to Basics , Blood Moon , Magus of the Moon , By Force , Null Rod , Stony Silence and Collector Ouphe are all rampant in EDH (at least in my experience), so I think you'd be better off cutting the artifact-lands.
Vision Skeins is an interesting include; you may be interested in running Words of Wisdom , which gets your opponents less out of the card. Also, if you run Notion Thief , the card is pure value. Note also that Vision Skeins becomes Words of Wisdom if you have Narset, Parter of Veils out.
Ovinize is worse than Rapid Hybridization or Pongify , in my opinion. I think you should run two to three boardwipes -- Cyclonic Rift , Toxic Deluge and Damnation are the best ones, I think, with Toxic Deluge on top (you can cast it while Gaddock Teeg is down).
Demonic Tutor is the best tutor, and Scheming Symmetry is good in a deck heavy in mill effects. There're some other good tutors to consider, of varying price: Vampiric Tutor , Diabolic Tutor , Fabricate (to get Isochron Scepter ), Mystical Tutor (for your Dramatic Reversal ), Dark Petition , Beseech the Queen , Mastermind's Acquisition and Lim-Dul's Vault are all good. Ideally, you wouldn't include the four-mana tutors, since they tend to take a whole turn to resolve. I suggest running around two or three more tutors than you have now.
There're a couple of ways to generate card-advantage that I think are worth including in a final list of this deck. I'm not entirely certain how the deck plays, but if you have Oona, Queen of the Fae out frequently without an infinite-mana combo, Skullclamp is definitely worth including. Sticking it on one of your faerie tokens means butt-loads of card-advantage. Slate of Ancestry is similarly good if you tend to have a high creature-count. Fact or Fiction and Chemister's Insight are alright instant-speed card-draw. Phyrexian Arena is a good piece of permanent-based card-draw, and Dark Confidant , if you have access to it, is great with your low average CMC. Speaking of low CMC, Ad Nauseam is a great card-draw spell; I recommend including it for the high-value card-draw.
If you want to pour money in here, Cavern of Souls is a great way to make sure your general isn't countered.
There're a few counterspells you don't have that I think you might find useful. Counterspell itself is good, and it's far pricier cousin, Mana Drain , is also great. Spell Snare , Swan Song and Flusterstorm are all great counters as well. Turn Aside is one I've thought about but never used... you may want to consider it.
If you choose to keep mainly basics and avoid the duals mentioned in (2), consider Back to Basics . The card is under $10 nowadays, and it's a great way to punish greedy mana bases.
Ok! That's all I got. Good luck, man!
4 weeks ago
In re Anguished Unmaking : I think it depends on your meta. If you need to be policing a wide range of "must answer" threats (value engine pieces; voltron pieces; combo/recursion pieces that are threatening to take over or end the game), it might be worth including as nothing is as flexible at instant speed save for Assassin's Trophy . I still like trying to keep the CMC on my interaction suite down to 1-2 CMC, since the deck is so mana hungry. My heavy tutor package can allow for a smaller suite of narrower answers in a pinch, but I'd almost rather try, for your list, testing with Abrupt Decay and Despark alongside Assassin's Trophy , instead of Anguished Unmaking . My list is a little greedy/more focused on facing opposing creature-based strategies, as a lot of the interaction/removal is stapled to a Dragon and only can hit creatures, but really I think it comes down to both decks needing a LOT of mana/to tap out on our turn to function on curve (hence prioritizing the most cheap and efficient removal is key).
I'm also looking at putting in one more expensive blow-out sweeper for games where I know I'll be behind and likely am sandbagging; probably something like Akroma's Vengeance , which can at least cycle if it is dead in hand. But that's more for pods where we're playing at 75% or lower.
In place of some of the more expensive tutors, since we're not a combo deck and blue is a splash color, I would look first to Lim-Dul's Vault , then to cheaper tutors like Scheming Symmetry , Eladamri's Call , Diabolic Intent , Dimir Machinations , Beseech the Queen , Praetor's Grasp , or Muddle the Mixture , which are all $10 or less.
Lim-Dul's Vault occurrence in decks from the last year
Commander / EDH:
All decks: 0.05%
UB (Dimir): 1.04%
WUB (Esper): 0.78%
BUG (Sultai): 0.59%
UBR (Grixis): 0.58%