Plague of Vermin

Plague of Vermin

Sorcery

Starting with you, each player may pay any amount of life. Repeat this process until no one pays life. Each player puts a 1/1 black Rat creature token into play for each 1 life he or she paid this way.

Latest Decks as Commander

Plague of Vermin Discussion

BestGunnit on Drink Death Like Wine

1 month ago

Plague of Vermin is an auto-include. Has won me several games.

henrypan321 on Ara Ara Ayara

2 months ago

killer_eye : Exsanguinate is probably safer in Syr Konrad, being a generically good card that doesn't rely on anything. Very flexible since you can choose how much mana to put into it.

Plague of Vermin can be played with Syr Konrad if you have a sac outlet though. It's a little riskier though since there's a window after Plague resolves that someone could interrupt you. With Ayara + Plague, you're safe from most interaction since you only choose the life to spend after it resolves (so you can just not spend any life if someone kills Ayara on the stack or spend less if someone might have a bolt or something) and Ayara puts her ability triggers on the stack immediately. Ayara also gains the life back too so it works as "free" damage even if no one dies from it.

With Syr Konrad, it's a little riskier to pump all your life into Plague. After you get your rat tokens, you can use your sac outlet to trigger Syr Konrad, but if Syr Konrad dies you don't be doing any damage.

I cut Solemn Simulacrum a while ago since it wasn't very good for me/my group.

killer_eye on Ara Ara Ayara

2 months ago

Hi, it’s me again from your hogaak list. I happen to have a similar monoblack decklist but running syr konrad instead of ayara as my commander but the gameplan is really the same (aristocrats style, no mill strategy).

Between Exsanguinate and Plague of Vermin which do you think is the easier one to execute? I just discover plague of vermin combo from your description and I’m really interested with it but it requires ayara to be there. I’m currently using exsanguinate but those 2 cards happen to be in the same price range so I’m interested whether to switch or not.

For suggestion: Solemn Simulacrum , it’s ramp and card draw in one card plus we don’t happen to cast the commander early on so it doesn’t matter much that it isn’t a black creature for ayara.

*btw, I really like that you have put a good description for your decklist. I happen to get a lot of useful info from them, thanks and keep it up!

Mana_Mythic_Legendary on Pursuing Perfection, Part 3: Mono-Black …

3 months ago

This was hard, extremely so: this was very nearly sixteen commanders. Black is well-suited to stand alone, and there are so, so many good choices that I’ve developed a newfound respect for anyone who tries to top ten black. This is almost my favorite color, and while it may be limited in dealing with anything not a creature, graveyard, or a card in hand, good GOD can it deal. All the tutors, all the kill spells, creatures of the night, what music… Sorry, it’s easy to go full Dracula in this area of the pie. In summary, I’ve a lot more to say on this subject than the colors we’ve already covered. However, as always in this project, the point is to celebrate three thematic elements, not drool over all the ludicrous power in this necrotic slice of the pie. Today we’re limiting ourselves to three pervading archetypes: life, death, and graveyard manipulation.

Life

White is a respectable powerhouse in this arena, but black takes center stage with undeniably better style. Whereas white just gains it, playing black means treating your life total as just one more resource to use, abuse, and exploit. Vampirism, folks, and not the glittery sort either. Cruel, properly thirsty vampirism, all about chugging opponents like cheap beer. And if you enjoy masochistic chicaneries that trade life for cards, removal, mana, and eventually victory, look no further.

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This guy. This glorious, ludicrous guy. General damage? Check. Lifelink? Check. Game-warping mechanic? Great big ol’ hissing, honking, ball-biting check. A peak, high performance example of boom/bust gameplay. Just be sure to draw as many cards as you can and pray that you find quality lifegain to patch the holes you’ll be blowing in yourself.

Vito, Thorn of the Dusk Rose

Here’s the thing: in mono-black, whenever you gain life it’s at someone else’s expense. An effect that doubles said expense? Please and thank you. board wide Lifelink? Also yes. Throw down some grunts, swipe right, and watch your peanut gallery of jerks like the Blood Artist heckle opponents to death.

Erebos, God of the Dead

You know what’s a great defense, command damage notwithstanding? A huge life total. This is partly why red struggles in EDH: hard to beat down someone with piles of life and a few choice defensive options. In some ways it’s just as hard to vampire them to death. You know who doesn’t care? Erebos. Old Erebos is singularly unimpressed by new Heliod’s jank, and happy to sweeten the deal with reliable draw for a modest fee of mana and life.

Death

The past few years have seen respectable creature removal cropping up even in blue and green. White has oodles of fantastic board wipes, and red can hose everything down with direct damage. But compared to black, they’re all posers. Shrinking creatures, sacrifice and discard are all primarily black stables. Toxic Deluge laughs at your indestructible legions. Grave Pact is amused by your shroud, and will bury you in it. This is the color of Go for the Throat , Diabolic Edict , and Tragic Slip . When black comes for your minions, you better have a mountain of solutions, otherwise the only way to save said minions is to take them off the field yourself.

Kuon, Ogre Ascendant

Spoiler alert: three of the Kamigawa ascendants are going to feature in these articles, and Kuon is the meanest (since the blue one got banned, anyway). I speak from gleefully shameless experience here. For the low, low price of three creatures and a modest downpayment of another every turn, black sacrifice stax can be yours. Add fun things like Magus of the Abyss , Dread Return , and Fleshbag Marauder and all his rude, rude cousins. Trust me on this: Kuon is, if you’ll pardon the pun, enchantingly nasty.

Yahenni, Undying Partisan

Very few things like boardwipes. However, provided they’ve had a snack first, Yahenni likes them just fine. An affordable commander with a sac outlet (indestructibility on a stick :D) who actively rewards slaughtering anything that could block? Sold! Throw in Fallen Ideal . You won’t be sorry.

Tergrid, God of Fright

In my last article I referred to blue as the heavyweight champion of yoink, but that’s not to say there aren’t other colors in the ring. Forcing opponents to sacrifice creatures and discard cards are both black staples, and boy howdy does Tergrid reward such misbehavior (though the adorable Tinybones, Trinket Thief may be more a discard fiend's speed). If tokens aren’t in the local meta, this will change that.

Graveyard Manipulation

Green shares a bit of this glory: there’s a pervasive theme in green of both exiling and returning cards to the hand from there. BUT… Black is still the unequivocal graveyard color, leaving the charge in both filling and emptying it, especially of creatures and onto the field. Bojuka Bog . Animate Dead . Living Death . Green may have some good tricks here, but few so dirty as an Entomb followed by Reanimate . So, so dirty. I saw it only once, but it was a turn two Terastodon . Once was enough.

Chainer, Dementia Master

Reanimator decks got you down? Here’s a bone, friends. Stealing your opponent’s guys is one thing. Exiling said guys when their owners wipe your stolen board is another. Chainer doesn’t like choices. Chainer likes it all. And Chainer, above all else, loves to break your opponent’s heads with their own toys.

Shirei, Shizo’s Caretaker

Convinced I like Kamigawa yet? I used to play this janky beast in a standard spirit deck. These days, my thoughts run first to a big pile of Shadowborn Apostle and assorted demons, but that’s just the easy first on the list of tricksy things up Shirei’s sleeve. Again, Blood Artist and friends. Again, deeply unhappy opponents.

Syr Konrad the Grim

Here’s horror for you. Anyone who doesn’t admit to a healthy bout of nervousness when this guy hits the field is a liar (or playing Orbs of Warding . Coming or going, yours or theirs, killed or milled or discarded, if the graveyard is involved then the good syr gets his ping. Have yourself a time with any number of silly combos and tactics: your opponents are guaranteed a Tortured Existence .

And, for my personal favorite...

Ayara, first of Locthwain

I ran Marrow-Gnawer for a time, but offloaded it when I realized that I was bored by the deck. A few years later I built Kuon, who quickly became infamous in my playgroup. However, aspects of the deck that I particularly enjoyed were better served when I switched to this villainous wench. With a decent draw effect (especially with Thornbite Staff ) and an imminently breakable ping engine, Ayara is BRUTAL with proper support. Endrek Sahr, Master Breeder . Army of the Damned . And the game-winning monstrosity itself, Plague of Vermin . Revel in countless bodies to exploit as only black can and watch your opponents die of Ayara’s approval.

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

Prior Articles:

Mono-White

Mono-Blue

metalflame on Shadowborn Apostle Combo

3 months ago

Plague of Vermin this card would be crazy good with your commander, and will win the game more often than not.

Sanglier on Verminator

10 months ago

Plague of Vermin is a great way to finish the game if you have ayara or zulaport and a sac outlet in play

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