You don't lose the game for having 0 or less life.
As long as your life total is 0 or less, all damage is dealt to you as though its source had infect. (Damage is dealt in the form of poison counters.)
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|Commander / EDH||Legal|
Phyrexian Unlife occurrence in decks from the last year
Latest Decks as Commander
Phyrexian Unlife Discussion
2 days ago
Mcat1999 - I run Repay in Kind in one of my favorite decks built around life manipulation, so shenanigans like that are super common. The best feeling is if you can get your life to 0, or even better a negative number, then play Repay in Kind . (Use things like Platinum Angel , Solemnity plus Phyrexian Unlife , etc). Trust me - way better feeling than casting it when your life is "only" at 1.
1 month ago
Hi Exoflo , Thank you for your feedback!
I'm very happy to hear that you like the deck and even more happy that I have inspire you to build your own! I had a look on your decklist and it reminded me a lot of an older list of the deck I ran about 3 years ago. Like your own deck, mine was heavily inspired by Muddstah's decklist, over the cause of the last years I changed it up a lot though.
Minamo, School at Water's Edge originally made its way in the deck together with Azor's Gateway Flip. Even with a lot of untapers the gateway has proven to be way to slow and has been cut from the list. Yet the School stayed, as I very often used it to untap Hall of Heliod's Generosity or Academy Ruins , as well as the Serra's Sanctum you've already mentioned.
Funnily enough all the cards you mentioned have been part of the deck at some point but have been cut from the list due to deck-changes.
Soul-Guide Lantern might be a good graveyard-hate card for you.
Nine Lives has just made it into my own list because of its political use. At the same time it also acts as a new wincon and has proven very versatile in my list. Phyrexian Unlife might be better in your list though, as it combos well with Solemnity you're already running.
I run the enchantments for multiple reasons: First they are cheap, which is a big plus in my book as I don't want to spend a lot of mana only to protect my commander. Second you can donate them to your opponents which isn't true for artifacts, etc. Spiritual Asylum I didn't even know about before. Yet i probably wouldn't run it due to the same reasons I cut Greater Auramancy before. Would it only grant hexproof instead of shroud it would be perfect... sadly the shroud-effect shuts down everything the deck wants to do.
I don't run the Illusions for it's lifegain-effect in the first place. The
Illusions of Grandeur
has been a part of my decklist since the first version. While I definitely played it for the lifegain back then, I keep it in the deck as a wincon and because of the nostalgia of course :)
Yet you're right about the combo being slow and unreliable and if you really want to win the game you probably should have another wincon in the deck that's easier to pull of.
Seems like perfect timing, as the new update just hit today! ;)
I hope I could help you and answer all your questions, Have a nice day, stay healthy and keep brewing!
1 month ago
Hi NetholonTheArchmage !
One year has passed and I'm always in love with your deck.
I spended many time to change some cards of your deck. I find that Pendant of Prosperity , Tolaria West and Dack Fayden fit very well in the deck, as Humility or Land Tax , but you probably already know for those ones.
Arcane Lighthouse and/or Shadowspear are great cards to deal with shroud/hexproof/indestructible, depending your playgroup. It's same for graveyard hate, but I'm still looking for a good card cause I also play with my graveyard.
Trying to replace Robe of Mirrors (I don't like aura, they vanish with board wipes), I find Spiritual Asylum , wich seems perfect on the spot. But I don't feel confortable with the shroud effect it give. Sure, it protect your creatures and (most important) your lands, but it cancel the Zedruu's ability on lands, wich I'm used to give . Still keeping in mind Lightning Greaves , but it can't be tutored with Wild Research
Finally, thank you for your work. It really make me love Zedruu, and gived me the strength to start building a deck (I mean, ctrl c - ctrl v your deck). Best of luck to you, can't wait for next update
2 months ago
I’ve got some enchantment combos for you to consider.
First off is one that ain’t a combo but it will protect Zur immensely: Diplomatic Immunity will make him untargetable.
Aqueous Form to protect Zur from dying do being blocked.
This one will get you infinite turns. Second Chance + Riptide Chimera . Just use Necropotence to get your life to under 5 then stack the triggers to have the chimera return Second Chance to your hand in response to sacking second chance and then during your turn recast second chance then rinse and repeat every turn. I’ve checked with judges on this one and they told me this works.
Greater Auramancy + Copy Enchantment copying the auramancy to have all your enchantments be untargetable including the auramancy. Just save a counterspell or two to protect against mass removal spells.
Best thing is that everyone of these cards can be Zur’d out.
4 months ago
Heyya Tanman, taking a look at the list and I have some broad critiques and some smaller ones. Let's start big.
You don't have enough +1/+1 counter cards to make it worth including payoffs for.
If you're playing infect, you're gonna need evasion, because no one in their right mind just lets an infect creature through, and honestly they're pretty small bois to begin with. Fleshing out the +1 counter package may help with this, big creatures are more troublesome to block and effects like Tuskguard Captain and Abzan Falconer can provide evasion beyond just being big and chunky.
You could do with a bit more ramp and a LOT more card draw.
Cards that are probably cuttable include:
Oko, the Trickster: I see this walker being cast for 6 mana, putting two +1 counters on one of your dudes, and immediately being focused to death by the rest of the table because its ult wins the game. You'd honestly be better off with Citadel Siege, it's harder to kill.
Arrest, Luminous Bonds, and Pacifism: in our meta, with so many creatures that either don't need to attack or can just be sacrificed, you're better off using kill spells like Mortify, Putrefy, or Swords to Plowshares (especially Swords bc exile beats recursion).
Grave Betrayal: such a sweet card, but much too slow.
Omen of the Dead and Omen of the Hunt: neither of these really do anything to further your gameplan. The fact that they're enchantments doesn't matter to this deck, and there are stronger recursion and ramp options.
Sunbond: There are 5 cards in this entire deck that gain you life. Goes great with your commander but there are a lot of things I'd rather spend my turn 4 on.
Courage in Crisis: Three whole mana for this effect? It's not a horrible card, but definitely inefficient.
Debt to the Deathless: This card would only be okay if damage was your primary win condition. As is? Not good.
Duneblast: The 7-mana slot may not be ideal for a wrath? Maybe this one is fine tho, idk.
Planewide Celebration: 7 mana to proliferate four times? No.
Storm Herd: Once again, this might be fine if damage was your wincon. You'd get a bunch of evasive attackers. As is? Probably not good.
Altogether though, great first deck, this would've kicked the crap out of my old Marath build back in the day.
5 months ago
I thought about adding the life-swapping effects, but I decided against it since I am trying to keep my life total above my opponents with lifelink and drain effects, and they don't affect the board at all. If I was including those, Phyrexian Unlife and/or Platinum Angel allow you to go to 0 life, swap with an opponent, and instakill them.
I like the Bloodchief Ascension + Mindcrank combo, but I don't love Mindcrank on its own since it fuels opponents graveyard shenanigans without affecting the board or their life totals. Instantly killing all your opponents with a two-card combo is certainly powerful though, so I will consider included it, especially since Bloodchief Ascension is already great and Liesa puts counters on it very quickly.
5 months ago
I imagine you want to wait fro full spoilers before making nay comments but the white and black monarch enchantments spoiled today are really interesting to me, Court of Ambition and not sure on the translated white name, both act as wincons if you can get into a Phyrexian Unlife + Solemnity situation, and would love to hear your thoughts on them.
5 months ago
Firstly, thank you for the compliments, they are much appreciated, getting to your questions though, I will preface with saying that at this point I have played a lot more WITH the new additions to taxes than against it on Ad Naus meaning I do not have a ton of concrete data to back up my points.
My opinions on the matchup have not changed much, I still believe it to be relatively comfortable though with a strong margin of error dependent on pilot. I will focus here first solely on the mono-white version. Skyclave Apparition is a card I am only worried about inasmuch as they tend to play the playset. Granted they can slow down our development, or worse tag Phyrexian Unlife, but at the end of the day I think we need to evaluate what that line of play translates to for us. If we assume our opponent is playing Skyclave Apparition on turn 3 in an effort to stagger our development. I believe we are fairly safe to assume that Stoneforge Mystic was not the turn 2 play (in most circumstances, perhaps we are on the play and they fear a turn 4 win which is also a possible scenario). With this in mind we need to consider what this means for our opponents clock. The other 2 drops in their deck (pre-board) are Leonin Arbiter and Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, if they are playing Skyclave Apparition turn 3 then we can also assume healthily that the latter was not the play as in that case scenario they have less to fear as concerns a turn 4 win. So let's assume they have played Leonin Arbiter, they now have 2 damage on board at least, turn 1 could have been Aether Vial in which case we can expect another 2-drop at end of turn, again a 2-drop likely with 1/2 power. Add to this the 2 of the Skyclave Apparition and we are at 5/6 past this turn cycle. Overall I like being in that spot even if we have lost a Pentad Prism, of course scenarios could change if we were reliant on that Pentad Prism but being reliant on 1 rock is already a good way to lose against taxes. I bring this all up because a turn 3 Skyclave Apparition precludes an effective Stoneforge Mystic sequence by at least 1 turn, which is a scenario I am more than willing to accept at the cost of a Pentad Prism. We still go well over D&T's head, so delaying their most effective means of killing us quickly is, in this scenario, what I would consider a net neutral gain. I do not want to come across as dismissive here though, they play a playset of Skyclave Apparition, that is something we have to be aware of, in other words, Lotus Bloom becomes ever more important. Here, Phyrexian Revoker becomes relevant, as having the ability to both shut off and remove or set-up and thus be able to be more selective is an issue we need to address, a point I'll get to shortly.
As regards Archon of Emeria, yes. This card is an issue. I will say it has the distinct advantage for us of not being Deafening Silence which I would argue is far worse for us. I will start by saying if D&T is of great concern to you I would consider a mainboard Echoing Truth solely on account of this card, that said in a wide meta that isn't viable and we then have to be smart about beating it. One such way to beat it would technically be to cast Ad Nauseam on opponent's end step with a Phyrexian Unlife active and leave one card in the deck, we can then win the following turn with Thassa's Oracle, be aware though that the line opens us up to the aforementioned Skyclave Apparition, probably a risk we would have to take in that scenario. Most lists run two Archon of Emeria so there is a decent chance we don't have to deal with it game one but yes it is a card that has the ability to shift the balance in our opponent's favor when it comes down. I also should point out, in case someone else is reading this as well, that the lands entering tapped clause is very relevant and should be considered as it can slow us down considerably.
Moving to sideboarding considerations then, Grand Abolisher is fairly solid yes, as to whether it does enough is a bit of a trickier question. Personally, I think we should not underestimate it's ability versus equipment and Stoneforge Mystic, but yes it is most useful for shutting off vial shenanigans such as end-step Flickerwisp. If D&T is a concern I would likely consider up to 2 Grand Abolisher however Grand Abolisher doesn't exactly solve any problem inasmuch as it nullifies issues while we address the larger problem. In the current meta I think we have to start with upping the amount of removal, 1 Slaughter Pact provides some great utility as a one of, and then 3 Path to Exile should be sufficient here to answer the most problematic creatures whilst maintaining relevance against the others popular decks in the format. Again I also like Echoing Truth and even Abrupt Decay effects I believe have some great utility here.
Addressing a potential rise in metashare, I will preface with saying I don't see that necessarily happening as a long time D&T player myself. The deck is too much of a meta deck really to reach Hogaak levels of play to draw a comparison, that said with the current meta the way it is I wouldn't be surprised if D&T got to 5-15% of the field, at which point your argument for a board wipe could be a consideration. We have to ask ourselves then what is popular if D&T is getting that big. Spirits seems like something that could be considered there, Gruul also seems a safe bet, forgive me for it is late and I can't think of a ton off the top of my head, in the environment that D&T is likely to foster then, board wipes would be a good choice, the question though would be which board wipe? Bontu's Last Reckoning is certainly the most efficient, but it is far from the only option. I have always been a fan of Settle the Wreckage for instance, and Supreme Verdict is also a viable option. In the face of a lot of D&T and the decks that would accompany its rise I would also strongly consider a plan B in the sideboard. Grave Titan has the ability to more or less keep up with D&T, Keranos, God of Storms is also decent there weirdly, Dragonlord Dromoka and similar cards are also viable, as is Inferno Titan as a sort of catch all, being a plan B but also a potential mini-boardwipe. In other words, I don't think fear of D&T should throw you onto a boardwipe by and of itself, but rather D&T and the creature decks that could come behind it if it gets very popular.
As for Hushbringer, no I don't think it's particularly great even though it's a cool thought. The big issue I have is that we will only have access to it in postboard games, meaning we could be put into a bad situation with a Phyrexian Revoker naming Lightning Storm and us then having a useless card in hand with Hushbringer, even worse is if they are playing straight Pithing Needle which would be a huge blowout naming Lightning Storm. As the deck is currently constructed then its a cool idea but a bit too risky for my liking. If you want to play Hushbringer you do have some options though, siding out all the oracles and playing Jace, Wielder of Mysteries, Laboratory Maniac, or something more obscure such as Conflagrate (which does have some additional utility in this matchup) could make it possible. Then though you would have to be willing to accept the loss of a sideboard slot for an alternate win-con that still needs to function within the combo, I'd argue that is worse than just playing a plan B. A more out there solution would be to run a Gifts Ungiven package in the board with Unburial Rites and Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite. With that you would have a plan B (albeit a card intensive one for your board) and a board wipe that both allows you to play Hushbringer as a piece of hate (Thassa's Oracle would likely be the cut for the package post-board), and play around Archon of Emeria effectively. I won't endorse that as the most competitive solution but I feel it's certainly something to consider if D&T and the decks it brings are very prominent in your local meta. As you rightly state, the manabase we have allows us to really tinker with quite a bit here so we have no shortage of options.
In summation though I still like the matchup, it has gotten a bit closer I will concede, down from 70-30 to probably closer to 55-45 if I am being generous lacking a substantial amount of data. At the end of the day we still go over their head meaning the burden is on them to stop us not so much for us to win, if that makes any sense, I apologize if it doesn't. Archon of Emeria though is a real issue, and one that should be taken seriously, maybe even necessitating an Echoing Truth on main in certain metas. On a much different note, the BW versions are much tougher. Tidehollow Sculler wears equipment well and interacts with us in a meaningful way. There I am more concerned as we are being attacked on two axes, and while we still go over their head, they can slow us down and drain us of resources in a much more meaningful way than the mono-white builds.
Thank you for the comment, I apologize if this is hard to follow, like I have said it is nearly 2 a.m. here and I didn't want to keep you waiting. If you have further questions, or just clarification of my thoughts here, please do let me know. I plan on revisiting this tomorrow (I suppose really later today) and seeing if there is anything else I should say regarding this matchup, if there is I will certainly let you know.