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Merchant, Messenger, Murderer

Modern Deathtouch Devotion Lifelink Mono-Black



Thus far this is the best mono-black aggro/devotion deck I'm seen or played with.

My initial plays Thoughtseize , Inquisition of Kozilek , Knight of the Ebon Legion and Gifted Aetherborn are intended to simply slow down fast combo decks or aggressive aggro decks while I stabilize, though none of them are ever bad draws which is something I always look for in cheap creatures, the ability to add value in the midgame. Duress is a nice budget option in place of Thoughtseize . Sign in Blood is a solid two-drop that smoothes out your mana-curve and can be used early or late with equal effectiveness.

In the midgame the goal is just beatdown with efficient creatures that build up Devotion. Nighthawk Scavenger and Phyrexian Obliterator will draw all the removal your opponents can get their hands on, because just one can win the game for you. Murderous Rider is swiftly becoming my removal card of choice and Tymaret, Chosen from Death if a fantastic one-of to include.

If all of that isn't enough to finish the job, the end-game goal of the deck is to drop a big Gray Merchant of Asphodel (or two).

So its a little aggro and a little devotion with some eight-rack (minus the rack) rolled in. It could probably be accused of trying to do too many things at once, but the mana curve is right and it has a natural path to follow from beginning to end: Disruption -> Aggro -> Devotion + Gary.

Any suggestions or advice would be much-appreciated, and especially regarding the sideboard. Right now it's fairly generic with just some standard land removal, creature removal, graveyard hate and a few potentially devastating Surgical Extraction to help out against combo-decks. If you can't get your hands on Surgical Extraction then Extirpate is a nice budget option.


Right now I'm trying to decide if I should try to slip in a Nightmare Shepherd in place of a Phyrexian Obliterator , to get the most out of the Gray Merchant of Asphodel and Geralf's Messenger . I'd be interested to hear if anyone has any experience using that card, specifically with this sort of deck.

Most of the creatures in the deck are bolt-able and therefor vulnerable to other common removal effects like Anger of the Gods - I can't help but wonder if Bad Moon wouldn't be a good inclusion, either main deck or in the sideboard. Just one on the board can change the entire complexion of the deck.

Might I actually get more mileage out of Dread Shade than Geralf's Messenger , especially as a mid- or late-game mana sink?


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83% Competitive

Top Ranked
  • Achieved #2 position overall 6 months ago
  • Achieved #1 position in Modern 6 months ago
Date added 6 months
Last updated 3 months

This deck is Modern legal.

Rarity (main - side)

4 - 0 Mythic Rares

23 - 7 Rares

5 - 8 Uncommons

Cards 60
Avg. CMC 2.53
Folders Uncategorized, Decks
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