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Cumulative upkeep (1)(Black)
At the beginning of each upkeep, if Tombstone Stairwell is in play, each player puts into play a 2/2 black Zombie creature token with haste named Tombspawn for each creature card in his or her graveyard.
At end of turn or when Tombstone Stairwell leaves the battlefield, destroy all tokens put into play with it. They can't be regenerated.
Tombstone Stairwell Discussion
1 month ago
As long as you have 1 creature in your grave with an Altar of Dementia out when the Tombstone Stairwell comes out, you will have a fair-sized grave by the time your turn comes again. Of course I am assuming a 4 player game.
1 month ago
After playtesting a bit more, I really like how the Altar of Dementia and Embalmer's Tools work together with these temporary zombies from the Tombstone Stairwell . But I still consider the Barren Moor a dead card because it comes in tapped so you get no immediate benefit and when you cycle it, you don't get a creature in the grave. I would definitely say -4 Barren Moor , +2 Swamp , +4 Twisted Abomination , -2 Something.
4 months ago
Hey! Looks good overall, but a couple comments.
First, your CSS is broken - several of the images etc don't appear right in your deck description :(
Second, I've got a mono-black token-based deck of my own, which I'll link here. It's got a lot of useful sources of tokens you might find helpful!
Commander / EDH
SCORE: 116 | 68 COMMENTS | 4564 VIEWS | IN 27 FOLDERS
Notable exclusions -- Tombstone Stairwell , Rite of Belzenlok (which has awesome flavor with Whisper too), Ophiomancer , Necropotence (note that you can reanimate in response to the exile trigger), Entomb ...
I don't know what your budget is here, but I can give more suggestions if you're interested :)
4 months ago
Tombstone Stairwell suffered a buyout and spiked less than a week after I made this public. I blame Laboratory Maniacs.
5 months ago
I built my Thantis deck in much the same way! it's hella fun.
MVPs in my build include: Hunted Troll , Hunted Dragon , Hunted Horror , Death by Dragons , and my very favorite, eternally overlooked and misunderstood cards: Tombstone Stairwell and Varchild's War-Riders .
Beast Within is just about the best removal spell around for this deck.
I ended up cutting the Vows from my deck, I kinda didn't care whether or not people attacked me. Hissing Miasma and Circle of Fire style effects similarly disappointed me. I kept Marchesa's 'cause it draws me cards. Also, if you find yourself wanting to draw more cards, consider Deathreap Ritual .
6 months ago
Looking through your deck I think for the most part it looks doable. There's a few things I would recommend cutting to kind of lower the CMC of the deck, as i noticed you've got a somewhat low land count, along with some cards I feel like are zombie traps.
Army of the Damned is something I see in a hell of a lot of zombie decks, but I never feel like it's ACTUALLY any good. Sure, 13 2/2's is nothing to scoff at, but it's so mana intensive and they enter tapped anyway that it just feels like a trap. Unless you've got a way to cheat the cost, I'd suggest trying something else - Reanimate , Unearth , Living Death , etc. Besides, I think Josu Vess is better for that kind of thing, since his horde has menace and is untapped.
Endless Ranks of the Dead is only situationally good from my experience. It's just a little too slow for me to ever really do much with it.
Empty the Pits is another I'm not too crazy about. Admittedly, self milling can make it do some work, but overall I feel like it's too expensive UNLESS you've got a good GY built up.
As far as suggestions, here's a few thoughts:
Unearth - this beauty is so synergistic with a zombie deck. The biggest problem for zombies in a 60 card format is that all of their lords are at the 3 CMC cost. In EDH we can run them all, and hey, surprise surprise, they're all targetable with this spell!
Reanimate - Basically a second Unearth, but without the 3 CMC restriction.
Flash and Rot Hulk is a pretty disgusting combination. You flash in the hulk and don't pay it's cost and since that's technically part of the resolution of the Flash spell, Hulk's ETB won't trigger until after he's in the graveyard in this instance, meaning you can target him with his own ETB, getting back it and two other zombies, then on his second ETB getting back another three zombos. All at instant speed!
Living Death - Highly, HIGHLY suggest this one. It's both a boardwipe and a finisher, all in one.
Tombstone Stairwell - THis one is a finisher in my deck. A better version of Endless Ranks of the Dead , but with the added benefit of sooooo many death triggers that if you've got a Diregraf Captain or Plague Belcher out, you'll probably win the game shortly after.
Shepherd of Rot - With all the zombies you're running, why not turn them into pure burn? Sure it hurts you too, but you can always run things like...
Whip of Erebos - Lifelink is underrated in black, and being able to reanimate anything in your GY for a burst swing is super nice.
Phyrexian Altar AND Ashnod's Altar - Both of these are great. Not only do they ramp, but with certain boardstates they go infinite for a combo win - Classics like Gravecrawler , Phyrexian Altar , and Diregraf Captain will drain the whole table pretty easily.
Nim Deathmantle - If you're running Ashnod's Altar , you should run this. This can EASILY lead to some infinite combos (with Ashnod's, this, and, say, Grave Titan you've got infinite zombies and also infinite colorless mana).
Bontu's Monument - There's probably a combo hidden with it, but cost reduction and incidental lifegain is always nice!
Talisman of Dominance - I like it better than the Dimir Signet, but running both will give you a little bit of ramp at least.
Graf Harvest - If you're going the combo route you probably don't need this but if you're wanting to just swing, this 1 CMC enchantment does some work in an aggro shell.
8 months ago
I'm worried that by adding "better cards" the deck is pricing itself out of where it's supposed to be. This deck was never intended to be super competitive. It's meant to be a fun casual deck. Please keep that in mind. I might actually rework this deck to remove the Karlov of the Ghost Council , Damnation , Wrath of God , and Godless Shrine . Replacing them with slightly lesser powered alternative would reduce the cost of the deck by half.
QUESTION: Is Mentor of the Meek the best card drawing engine for the deck? I think I like it better then Viscera Seer , since Viscera Seer is pretty much dependent on the Tombstone Stairwell already being be setup. Once it's setup, most games are going to be over quickly.
9 months ago
I'd say Victimize should work better than Rescue from the Underworld. I love my curves to be low, so 2 cmc make a lot of difference to me. The only upside I see in Rescue from the Underworld is that it is instant speed.
It doesn't really matter if everyone agrees to attack you once you cast Tombstone Stairwell. All tokens are sacrificed at the end of each turn and then everyone gets new tokens during the next upkeep. That means only one player can attack you with his tokens each time and you will always have your own ones for blocking. if there's only 5 creatures in all graveyards at the time you play Tombstone Stairwell you will +10/+10 Kresh the Bloodbraided each turn! In a four player pod that means Kresh gets +30/+30 until your next combat step!
I'd cut either Monstrous Onslaught (I don't like that you can't target players with it) or Rite of the Raging Storm (does practically the same, only worse) for it.
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