Artifact Creature — Gargoyle
Vantress Gargoyle can't attack unless defending player has seven or more cards in their graveyard.
Vantress Gargoyle can't block unless you have four or more cards in hand
: Each player puts the top card of their library into their graveyard.
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|Commander / EDH||Legal|
|Commander: Rule 0||Legal|
Latest Decks as Commander
Vantress Gargoyle Discussion
2 weeks ago
2 months ago
The Ramp, the Lands and Topdeck Manipulation
The major goal of every good Galea deck is the right method of ramp and topdeck manipulation. Every time you see a card that Galea cannot play, you should have a way to change the situation somehow. And there are two primary ways to achieve that:
Direct manipulation. Scroll Rack , Sylvan Library , Soldevi Excavations , Vantress Gargoyle and Jace, the Mind Sculptor directly manipulate with your topdeck, allowing you to gain card advantage. Let's look at Scroll Rack for example. If you have say three Auras/Enchantments in your hand that you can play this turn, and your topdeck isn't Aura or Equipment. You just draw three cards, put your Auras/Equipments on topdeck and play all them, actually drawing three cards for 1 mana!
Fetching lands. As long as Galea cannot play lands from top of your library, you should fetch lands as much as you can. This reduces the number of lands in your library (and the chance to see a land on your topdeck), and allows you to shuffle your library. We have six lands that fetch the other lands, and one of them ( Thawing Glaciers ) can fetch multiple times. We also have Sword of the Animist and Elvish Reclaimer that fetch lands repeatedly, and Expedition Map .
The Ramp strategy of this deck uses "the best of all worlds" principle: the best creatures, the best artifacts and the best Aura ( Wild Growth ). Most of the Ramp cards cost 1 mana, but there are few 0-cost and 2-cost cards. Why don't I use more Auras? Because creatures and artifacts are more efficient, and I need Ramp prior to playing Galea. Why do I use mana dorks? There are two reasons: I need early targets for my Equipment, and I want to sacrifice them later to Skullclamp .
This deck has three ways of fetching NON-basic lands: Elvish Reclaimer , Expedition Map and Tolaria West - and if you have Academy Ruins , you can recycle Expedition Map to fetch more lands. One of the best targets for the fetching is Urza's Saga , which can create a giant token and fetch Skullclamp or Expedition Map . Another very important target is Glacial Chasm , which can allow you to survive and grab victory even in a grave sutuation. Of course, Academy Ruins and Hall of Heliod's Generosity are also the popular fetch targets.
The Aura Selection
Most Auras in this deck steal or spoil enemy creatures (especially Commanders). It's hard to win when your Commander is stolen or converted to Insect :) There are only two Auras that should be played on your creatures: Mantle of the Ancients and Unquestioned Authority . Most of the time they are played via Sovereigns of Lost Alara : you attack, then fetch one of them from your deck, and, in case of the Mantle, also play all Equips from your graveyard.
The Hidden Gems
Conqueror's Flail prohibits opponents from playing spells during your turn. This allows you to play all your stuff without pesky counterspells and attack safely. It's very important for this deck.
Dowsing Dagger Flip should be transformed into a land that provides three mana of any color. It's a great Ramp, especially if you consider that Sword of Feast and Famine and Treachery untap your lands. With a bit of luck, you can even create two Construct tokens with Urza's Saga !
Fractal Harness is the easiest way of creating an enormous creature. It will grow very fast, and Belt of Giant Strength may give it +10/+10! If you get both in play, follow the "Trident Punch" path and look for Surestrike Trident .
Umbral Mantle doesn't have a lot of good targets in this deck: there are no creatures with powerful "Tap:" abilities. But you can steal them! :) Talking seriously, the Mantle is used to untap our Ultron after attacking. I am not a big fan of using Galea for this purpose: it's better not to put all the eggs into one basket. Plus, the Mantle makes a great combo with Surestrike Trident .
Shimmer Dragon is really great for this deck. It flies and almost always has Hexproof. It provides insane amount of cards. And it is much better material for Ultron than Galea IMHO. Most of the time you would need just one Scytheclaw or Kaldra Compleat on it to deal very serious damage.
Fierce Guardianship means that you always might have a counterspell :)
Thassa, God of the Sea is very helpful for two reasons: it can make your creature unblockable (even a tiny Elf with the Scytheclaw becomes a very dangerous threat!) and it provides a free Scry 1 every turn (see above on topdeck manipulation). Still, you have a chance of turning her into creature, since there are several permanents with UU in their casting cost. Having an indestructible creature is always nice!
3 months ago
TriusMalarky - I did in fact retire the mill deck prior to ruin crab, so "8 Crab" was not flown. After I failed with Drown in the Loch , I retired the deck.
A lot has changed in Modern but a lot has not. Mill feels like a Burn deck, but rather than deal 20 damage, I now have to "burn" 52 cards. The opponent instantly knows what the plan, and they react accordingly. TBH, the most impactful spell was Archive Trap but even then, it was only 13 cards down.
You have several challenges: answering your opponent's threats, and no combat to speak of, milling their cards, keeping the graveyard empty.
I tried building the deck in many ways:
I learned that the deck loses to Tribal decks such as Goblins, Elves and Spirits.
It loses to Collected Company and Infect decks. At the time, Affinity was a rough matchup, but so was Death's Shadow and Jund threats.
Some decks such as Dredg just got better when they were being milled, so anything which used the grave as a resource was rough.
In conclusion, it was fun to be "the mill player" and you always got a lot of attention as the villain. It was also fun to watch people get killed. But I never won anything more than a few pity packs.
4 months ago
5 months ago
A couple of deck philosophy problems with this deck.
Why so many counterspells? If you're going for a control mill plan, you'll want either white for boardwipes or black for solid removal.
66 cards? Believe me, I used to have this problem a lot. Finding the last few cards to take out when deckbuilding is a huge problem for me because they all seem so useful! The argument that persuaded me to always have the strength to cut something was this. You have 66 cards. Logically, some cards are going to be weaker than others. You have a strongest card and a weakest card. Why are you letting yourself draw your weakest (66th best) card when you could have drawn anything else in your deck that's just better? The same logic applies to anything outside of your 60 best cards. You just have to find which are the 60 strongest.
There are a lot of 1x and 2x cards in here. Consistency is a very big part of building a deck. That's why >60 card decks are considered bad, and it's why you want as many copies of your good cards as possible. Similar argument to the >60 card argument. Why draw your weaker cards when you could've used that space in the deck for your stronger cards?
22 lands. Most 60-card decks run 24, higher for decks with lots of high CMC cards and lower for more aggro decks with low-cost spells. 24 is about right for this deck, more like 28 if you have the 6 extra nonland cards. I don't do the math on this one, but people who have say that 22 lands isn't enough to consistently make a deck of average average CMC work.
Okay, now on to specific cards. I think there are a lot of cards that don't fit with your gameplan here, so I'll just focus on what I think you should be trying to do. You said this is a turbo mill deck, so let's focus on milling as much as possible. Didn't Say Please is a good one to give you a little bit of control (usually you'll use this to stop a crab from dying). More Maddening Cacophony is probably good, as it's just better than Merfolk Secretkeeper (which I don't think is good enough for the deck) and one of the best straight mill spells around. Vantress Gargoyle is good to have not for the mill but for the utility as a blocker and alternate win (unlikely). If you're really centered around Teferi's Tutelage (which is not a bad idea, it's strong mill), have more card draw. Frantic Inventory is a good one, as are Thirst for Meaning and Opt , which you already have. Fabled Passage is strictly better than Evolving Wilds if you have them. I crafted the full playset because I use them in so many decks.
6 months ago
If you don't mind infinite combos, Pili-Pala is a classic companion of Grand Architect that nets as much mana as you need. Toss back in the Filigree Sages or something to that effect and you can activate all of your artifacts repeatedly until the job is done. Codex Shredder , Unwinding Clock , and Vantress Gargoyle are some other cards that might fit this strategy. There's also the idea to focus on playing many small artifacts for Altar of the Brood and Grinding Station .
7 months ago
You could include combo lines around Intruder Alarm , such as Alarm + Deranged Assistant + Hua Tuo, Honored Physician . There are actually a lot of cheap self-mill creatures that work here like Cathartic Adept , Vantress Gargoyle , and Millikin among many others. Drift of Phantasms could be nice to include here since it can find either Alarm or Hua Tuo.
Another good combo card is Mana Severance . You could follow it up with Balustrade Spy , Hermit Druid , or Undercity Informer to mill your whole library. This is good since you could then flashback Dread Return targeting Necrotic Ooze, which in turn is good if you toss in Necrotic Ooze combo lines (there are many) such as Phyrexian Devourer + Triskelion .
Another notable self-mill card is Cephalid Illusionist . With it and Lightning Greaves you can mill your whole library, 3 cards at a time. The 3 card chunks is significant since you'll get a bunch of triggers from Sidisi, so a finisher like the above-mentioned Necrotic Ooze combo may not be needed since you'll have tons of zombies. Dimir Infiltrator and Muddle the Mixture are nice here since they can find either combo piece.
7 months ago
Interesting take on the mill plan.
I'm glad to see Sphinx Mindbreaker used here, and mixing it with Obsessive Stitcher and Malakir Rebirth Flip seems promising. I do feel like running 4 Sphinx Mindbreaker seems like a lot though since Obsessive Stitcher is your only reliable way to cheat it into play. Using a 6 mana Ashiok, Sculptor of Fears (that's pretty bad otherwise) that might still be there to play it from the graveyard on the next turn doesn't seem like the greatest idea. I think 3 would be more reasonable.
I like the inclusion of Ghostly Pilferer since it should line-up nicely against all the foretell cards in the meta, but I feel like Vantress Gargoyle would serve you better in the main board both for staying alive, your mill plan, or winning with damage.
You are running very few lands at 21 for a deck that means that runs a bunch of high CMC cards that also wants to keep up mana for instants and creature abilities. Personally I would remove the 2 Ashiok, Sculptor of Fears and add 2 lands, probably a Castle Vantress and a Castle Locthwain .
Drown in the Loch is an amazing card in here, but it being your only counterspell and your only removal, it will have a lot of heavy lifting to do. A few Saw It Coming or Heartless Act could go a long way. You could probably cut a few Relic Golem or Ghostly Pilferer since you won't get much value out of too many creatures out at the same time with abilities you need to pay for anyway.
Hopefully these are useful, cheers!