Phyrexian Dreadnought

Phyrexian Dreadnought

Artifact Creature — Dreadnought


When Phyrexian Dreadnought enters the battlefield, sacrifice it unless you sacrifice any number of creatures with total power 12 or greater.

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Set Rarity
Mirage (MIR) Rare
Promo Set (000) Rare

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Format Legality
Leviathan Legal
Unformat Legal
Limited Legal
2019-10-04 Legal
Commander / EDH Legal
Duel Commander Legal
1v1 Commander Legal
Oathbreaker Legal
Casual Legal
Vintage Legal
Highlander Legal
Tiny Leaders Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Legacy Legal

Latest Decks as Commander

Phyrexian Dreadnought Discussion

Caerwyn on Strange Tales #2 - Custom …

1 hour ago

I think this is an okay guide for beginners designing simple cards with established abilities. Ultimately, I feel you miss a whole lot of the nuisance surrounding designing cards.

The most important rule, which you failed to mention, is knowing what format you are designing for. Your rules work fine for Standard and the unexciting cards that make up the filler in a precon deck or expansion set. They do not, however, lend themselves to creating new cards that would actually see play in Modern or the eternal formats.

Knowing the format you are building a custom card for is important--it informs what you can get away with in terms of costing, complexity, and power level. Designing a "fair" card for Standard is going to be a lot different than designing a "fair" card for Legacy.

Some of your rules simply do not track with reality. Take your card draw rule--you say a card should cost 1.5 mana, but it is well-established that gets you one card plus an additional effect (Opt being Wizards' pet example, but the for a card plus an advantage is so prevalent, the category has a specific word--cantrips).

You do not really address drawbacks, and how drawbacks can change the cost of the card (Daveslab2022 touched on this). Let's take a patently untrue statement in your post: "but we have never seen a 1-mana 3/1."

More accurately, we have never seen a vanilla 1-mana 3/1. Spark Elemental requires you to sacrifice elemental, so it often serves as a worse Lightning Bolt. Kjeldoran Dead requires you to sacrifice another creature. We can even go higher than a 3/1 if we make the ability devastating enough; Phyrexian Dreadnought for example, is a 12/12 for .

Drawbacks are an important card of card design, allowing Wizards to print strong cards below the curve. It is tricky to get the balancing on these right--and a number of powerful cards were created by Wizards' failure to balance.

I also think your post does a disservice as a guide by not discussing syntax. After not knowing how to cost cards, the biggest issue with custom cards are people's inability to write proper rules text.

When writing a custom ability, one should do a Gatherer search to find similarly-worded abilities that can be used as a template for whatever it is the custom card is trying to do. Not only will this make the card look more professional, it will reduce any abnormal rules issues that might come up as a result of poor wording and it might give a better idea of how the card should be costed.

frigof on Dread Thoughts Lead to Dreadnoughts

1 week ago

I always loved Phyrexian Dreadnought when I was a young. You just made me remember this card and I'll actually give this deck a go for the chuckles.

Artatras on The Many-Faced God - [Primer]

1 month ago

Glad to hear that!

I really wish Death's Shadow could work with Lazav. It would be amazing. Unfortunately, it does not. The thing is, Shadow's ability is a static one instead of being ETB. This means that Lazav would keep that effect and immediately die by getting -X/-X, where X is your life total. I really like Death's Shadow as a card, but it is actually very hard to make it work in EDH. One of the few ways is in a The Mimeoplasm deck, where you can give your commander 13 +1/+1 counters without having to copy the actual Shadow. As of right now, Hunted Horror is the second best creature that we have access to in terms of a power/mana cost ratio. I hope Wizards will eventually end up completing the Theros Titan cycle (the likes of Uro, Titan of Nature's Wrath and Kroxa, Titan of Death's Hunger) with a powerful Dimir version, because those creatures would be perfect for this deck. Low mana cost, ability to get into the graveyard by themselves and powerful on-attack triggers. Fingers crossed!

Cavern of Souls is more of a meta call. In my playgroup, for example, Lazav never gets countered (apart from the cases where I can immediately threaten lethal with haste) because my opponents prefer to just use removal on him, and I probably would do the same. However, there is no real downside in including Cavern in this deck , so I can see your point.

Diabolic Intent is a card that I had in my first versions of the deck, but I ended up cutting it because it was a little suboptimal. More often than not, I found myself having it stuck in my hand with no creature to sacrifice. Sacrificing Lazav is out of question. As for the other creatures, there are only 13 in the deck. The chances of having one of them in hand alongside Diabolic Intent are pretty low. And of those creatures, some like Cavern Harpy, Hunted Horror and Phyrexian Dreadnought can't even be used. A two-mana tutor is great, but it is too unreliable in this deck. Insidious Dreams, Grim Tutor and Lim-Dul's Vault are much more effective.

As for Tainted Strike, it is absolutely worth considering. Being cheap and instant speed makes it really efficient. Due to it's non-repeatable nature, I would only use it when I'm sure I'll be oneshotting someone (that is, when Lazav is a copy of the Dreadnought). If you want something that can be used more than once, Glistening Oil is also pretty decent. However, as you have said, there aren't too many available slots in my list. I've come to a point where if I want to fit a new card in, that card needs to do the same thing as the one I am replacing but in a better, more efficient way.

I really hope you end up building the deck, perhaps with your own twist. If you are worried about endless waves of opposing removal spells and counterspells, refer to the General Strategy section where I talk about how to handle that by playing patiently and not overextending.


DeinoStinkus on flesh soup

1 month ago

This seems like a pretty decent deck, especially for such a low price. I imagine you either own the deck yourself or plan to buy it, no? Let me give you a word of advice: buy Overgrown Tomb. Shocklands are a great investment, even for a land.

And Phyrexian Dreadnought would be awesome too, although it's a fourth of the price of your deck.

SquirrelPenguin on Quest for weirdness

1 month ago

Llanowar Envoy.

Phyrexian Dreadnought in legacy. (I already know a good one, but don't click it until after you respond.)

Don't click this until after you respond! Show

Artatras on The Many-Faced God - [Primer]

3 months ago

Thanks for appreciating!

Phyrexian Dreadnought is the single best card in the deck, and the deck is built around tutoring it as soon as possible. As a result, replacing it efficiently is impossible a no other creature can offer such a high power for such a low mana cost. That being said, there are a few "decent" alternatives:

Nyxathid and Eater of Days both provide a 3-turn clock. The Eater costs one more mana, but does add two relevant keywords.

Virtus the Veiled is less of a voltron creature, but potentially deals more regular damage.

Depending on how casual your playgroup is, you could consider Phage the Untouchable as a very expensive one-shot kill.

Just keep in mind that without the Dreadnought the deck will be significantly slower.

12_dwarfs on The Many-Faced God - [Primer]

3 months ago

Love this deck a lot, I'm currently trying to brew my own version of this (With the additons of some other combos) but I dont have anything like Phyrexian Dreadnought do you have a good alternative?

Woopertrooper on Varolz, the Scar-Striped EDH - Competitive

3 months ago

You only need to scavenge Death's Shadow and Phyrexian Dreadnought onto Varolz for one-shot lethal commander damage... or either one of those plus Berserk. Or either one of those onto any one of the infect creatures. You really don't need any more with all the tutors, plus all the ramp is very important when every bit of mana counts to comboing as quick as possible.

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