Varina, Lich Queen
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Format Legality
1v1 Commander Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Commander / EDH Legal
Commander: Rule 0 Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Highlander Legal
Legacy Legal
Leviathan Legal
Limited Legal
Oathbreaker Legal
Vintage Legal
Casual Legal
Custom Legal
Quest Magic Legal

Varina, Lich Queen

Legendary Creature — Zombie Wizard

Whenever you attack with one or more Zombies, draw that many cards, then discard that many cards. You gain that much life

, Exile two cards from your graveyard: Create a tapped 2/2 black Zombie creature token.

Guerric on Great Esper-ations

2 months ago

Hi everyone! I could use some communal help in deciding on something. For some time I have had a super-friends deck built around Aminatou, the Fateshifter. The deck works fine and all and there are some fun things with it, but I think I just really don't like super-friends. Players tend to target planes-walkers all the time, even if they aren't the biggest threat or even a threat at all, and while I do a lot to protect them its just not a super fun playstyle for me. This is also disappointing because I started by magic journey with casual decks in the esper shard world and I love the color combo, so I want to like my esper deck a lot. But I have a lot of pricy, shiny planes-walkers I could sell for store credit ti make a new deck, and a beautiful esper mana base and support cards I'd play in any deck. So I'd like some help deciding what to do.

When I first started commander, I thought I'd build Oloro, Ageless Ascetic. It seemed like a relaxed concept to gain life, draw cards, sit back, and police the board. But as I've gained experience and the format has evolved, I don't think I'd enjoy a passive playstyle like this, but I could be wrong.

One commander I am very intrigued by is Alela, Artful Provocateur. I played her in Brawl in person and on arena and enjoyed that, and think she would even be better in commander. I love artifacts and enchantments and do not have an artifact themed deck. I think she could be built in a lot of ways, and could have some fun combos while also being able to smack opponents for damage. I like commanders who have a clear direction, but which still could be built differently, and she seems like that. One of my reservations is that I also play Ranar the Ever-Watchful, and while I don't see myself playing blink in Alela and I don't run combos in Ranar, I'd want to make sure it feels different.

I also am very excited by Varina, Lich Queen. I love tribal decks to the core, and zombies are about as iconic as they come. I also like commanders that draw cards, and while Varina technically loots, building her correctly would allow me to sculpt my hand and recur stuff from the yard. While I know there are some combos with her she could be played aggressively, and she seems like fun.

I could also be open to other esper commanders, with the exception of the "enter the dungeon" guy as that mechanic sounds annoying to me, but the above are ones I've been intrigued by. What are your thoughts? I very much appreciate any input!

Gleeock on Streets of New Capenna

2 months ago

I will hold out hope for some inspiration in the Jundboss... Though none of these give me any reason to expect some inspired design. I like Varina, Lich Queen & I like the idea of a Varina without a tribal shell needed... Which is basically our sphinx - but again, it is not even a hair removed from the aforementioned Esper commander that already exists. By description, the Jundboss will likely be some sac to remove B.S. that has already been done by Shattergang Brothers - maybe a hair removed... Lets hope they prove me wrong with design creativity.

Gleeock on Who is Your Favorite Tribal …

3 months ago

I think some people like The Ur-Dragon better than scion due to higher variance, less combo-in-the command zone & linear gameplay problems & less high-end focus on voltrony dragon strategy & more focus on just being able to lean on various dragons in the 99 if you want to. Sure, if compete level is you sole stipulation, then scion may be a "better" choice.

I'm not personally a big tribal guy because I feel that a good amount of them lead the linear play lifestyle. If I did make tribal it probably would be Varina, Lich Queen d/t so many options in a diverse tribe or maybe some form of equipicats because I think they can reach outside of the bounds of tribal so well with many equipment synergies. I did have a really solid Marisi, Breaker of the Coil warriors tribal deck, that was really fun & nontraditional & warrriors lend themselves to a lot of evasion, protection, & other diverse abilities.

griffstick on Who is Your Favorite Tribal …

3 months ago

I've had 8 tribal decks in my life . I'm down to 3 now. I've had Dragon tribal 2 times. The first was Atarka, World Render. This was a budget build. I once ko'ed someone there turn 3, my turn 4 with cmdr damage. The second tribal Dragon deck was a better Dragon deck. Lathliss, Dragon Queen was the cmdr. It was so much fun. I used this cmdr because I had so many mono red dragons in my binders. This cmdr was just obvious so building it was easy. I have a deck I call hydra fight club and it's really cool. I made a mono black vampire deck. It was my very first deck. Kalitas, Bloodchief of Ghet was the cmdr. 8 yrs ago. I've had a mono white angel deck that was life gain + enchantments for draw. It was surprisingly strong. Lyra Dawnbringer was the cmdr. This was such fun to play. Dropping a Sunblast Angel on all my opponents was brutal. These are all retired decks.

The tribal decks I still have are mono red goblins. Krenko, Tin Street Kingpin and uts made on a budget. My local lgs store owner dean made a budget Krenko, Tin Street Kingpin deck on a budget. Total cost of the deck was around 100$ so I bought it from him and made slight changes to the deck. It's value is now around 180$. Another triple deck I still have is Varina, Lich Queen. I had a mono black Zombie deck that was all the zombie lords it could fit Mikaeus, the Unhallowed was the cmdr. When Varina, Lich Queen was released. I ask the store owner if he'd like to build a deck with me. We used all the cards from my mono black Zombie deck and built Varina, Lich Queen Zombie lords edh. Pretty cool deck. Kinda strong too. The last tribal deck I still have is is mono white soldiers. Djeru, With Eyes Open is the commander because the real commander of the deck is Elspeth, Sun's Champion. I wanted to build a soldier deck around Elspeth, Sun's Champion's +1 ability. This deck is fun.

I've never had a Morophon deck.

Epicurus on Card creation challenge

4 months ago

Too late to edit, but the flavor text for Unending Stipend would be:

"There is only one certainty in life." - Varina, Lich Queen

DonaldFuck on dimir zombie token engines

4 months ago

I believe, you should convert into Varina, Lich Queen instead while keeping the strategy the same. White can give you a token doubler in the form of Anointed Procession, not to mention better removals.

BertilFalukorv on Need a home for my …

5 months ago

My favorite card is a black enchantment on the Reserved list that I got two copies of a while back before the prices skyrocketed. But I never found a proper home for it.

The card in question is Tombstone Stairwell

As long as my yard always have more creatures than my opponents it will never be worth attacking me since then I can always outblock their tombspawn tokens.

Below I've listed what some of the colors can do to bring this card to life. (hehe) I know there are a lot more and please don't hestitate to type in your suggestions so that I can add to the list. The reason I list them is to make it easier to think of what kind of deck I could run this in as a "win-more-card" without ruining the deck so it fails of my yard gets emptied. It's also worth noting that the tokens gets Destroyed so if you make your creatures indestructible with something like Eldrazi Monument you get to keep your tokens where your opponents have to destroy theirs.

RED • ETB triggers like Purphoros, God of the Forge

• Cool Synnergy with Deathbringer Thoctar which is extra nice since it's also a Zombie

BLACK • Various Deathtriggers like Blood Artist

• Sac outlets

WHITE • Great Synnergy with Cathars' Crusade

• Some Deathtriggers

• Has some nice player protection (To avoiod effects like Bojuka Bog and also nice recursion of enchantments and/or protection for enchantments.

GREEN • Good recursion cards, even on bodies like Eternal Witness to mention one of many.

• Death Presence

BLUE • Draws a lot of cards

• Protects gameplan and has some good Counter Triggered a bility cards like Stifle and Nimble Obstructionist which is extra nice to have on a body that also draws a card.

Basically I've made decks around this a hundred times but when I'm about to finish I feel like I'm lacking something in the colors I'm in or something else, I'm lost in what direction I should go to make the best out of this without having a poop deck till all the stars align.

Best Commanders I can think of as of yet:

Alesha, Who Smiles at Death Aristocrats

Kresh the Bloodbraided works well with this too, currently I'm building him in a more traditional direction since I fell in love with this commander for some reason. :)

Teysa, Orzhov Scion Aristocrat Tokens

Teysa Karlov Aristocrat Deathtriggers

Ghave, Guru of Spores w/o going for inf combo wincon

Grismold, the Dreadsower

Jarad, Golgari Lich Lord

Varina, Lich Queen Seems perfect in many ways for this too.

I currently run it in a Wilhelt, the Rotcleaver but I never gotten to cast it yet. The boring thing about Zombie tribal is that it's boring to build and somewhat fun to play (Play zombies, play lords, swing) and it leaves for a less interactive gameplay. It's a solid deck but it doesnt feel very spicy.

I don't necessarly need to run the most optimized deck to have fun or run the most expensive cards. I'm helpful for all the Ideas you can bring me as I seem to have hit a wall where I don't know what to do anymore.

Currently I'm leaning towards either of Teysa's or Alesha.

TL:DR What deck or what colors do you think Tombstone Stairwell would do best in?

Much appreciated. :)

BertilFalukorv on Commander for Abzan Aristocrat deck

5 months ago

Yeah Ghave was the first one I looked at, I don't want my graveyard to be targeted so running a lot of recursion is something im trying to avoid.

I feel like I'm probably trying to jam in my Tombstone Stairwell in the deck. The best thing to do would probably be to run Mardu or Esper with Varina, Lich Queen and run a zombie theme. Problem is I have a zombie deck already with Wilhelt, the Rotcleaver Maybe I should just expand it to Esper instead of dimir and run more creatures.

Mardu is too tempting to run with Triggers like Purphoros, God of the Forge

The thing with Ghave is that It's like Abaques says, it's a known combo enabler and I try to stay away from such decks :)

So maybe the topic is wrong, I should make a thread about Tombstone Stairwell instead :P

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