How good have you found Precursor Golem and Tainted Strike to be? They're a combo together, but fairly easily disrupted; and there's little else that good to Tainted Strike in the deck.
The only thing I don't understand is how Lions Eye Diamond made the deck viable. I don't see why it would be bad without it. Obviously any kind of acceleration is going to help, but not having LED far from crushes the deck.
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I've actually taken Sorin Markov out of my list due to a reliance on killing with poison, but you actually include a fair few ways to hammer the damage home normally.
I'm skeptical of Army of the Damned however, as it seems like a very large mana investment for no immediate effect on the board. While it does generate 26 power, they enter tapped while also inciting attention from the table.
Question for you: how do you handle fog effects? The players I play with have started to respect the beat down enough to include repeatable, difficult to disrupt fog cards such as Moment's Peace that put me in a really awkward position when I attack "for the win."
I don't really want to include any of the "I win" buttons like the Leyline/Helm combo if I can avoid it, but it's frustrating when the three other players at the table all have enough fog to keep me at bay indefinitely.
Is it worth omitting other playable infect creatures in favor of alternate win conditions? For example is Ulamog really better than Plague Stinger or Phyrexian Vatmother? These seem to support your aggressive strategy better.
In your current build one piece of equipment you may want to look into is Shuko. It costs 1 to cast, equips for free and turns Skithiryx into a 2 turn clock. It also works well with other cheap infect creatures.
When I play aggro in Commander I'm very careful about putting in too many expensive cards. You really want to aggressively curve out every game. Running ramp is fine but the focus of the ramp should be ramping you up to 5 or maybe 7. If you find that you're wanting to put in hugely expensive spells like ulamog it's likely that you have too much ramp and that can be scaled back for more cheap threats. Your commander is your curve topper, anything more expensive than that really needs to be absurd to get a spot.
This is probably the best build for this deck I have seen yet. It still has the inherent problem of what you do when your skithyrix gets stolen. Any thoughts ? Perhaps homeward path could help
If you have a cheap source of tokens (say bitterblossom) then helm of possession would be a good option.
First question is pretty simple: would you consider this a competitive deck? Next up, what's the decision against running Grafted Wargear seems like it's just +3 poison every time you get Skithiryx into play. I'd also like to hear why you've chosen to omit sword of fire and ice. I would think this deck would love the CA it generates, or better put, why have you picked the swords you picked?
Yeah I can see the appeal of alternate win conditions if the dragon isn't able to get the job done. I just prefer all in style aggro I guess. Either way you go though I think you should be running Infernal Darkness in your build. It's a crushingly powerful tool for monoblack and unlike Contamination (which is bad) it doesn't require additional support and doesn't make Cabal Coffers crappy
I still think the deck could be sped up some to kill more consistently before people are able to defend themselves. Possible inclusions would be Hatred, more ramp (Bubbling Muck and maybe 2cc mana rocks), cutting Ambitions Cost & Ancient Craving for Night's Whisper & Sign in Blood and Ill-Gotten Gains & Insidious Dreamsover a couple of the transmute tutors or Liliana Vess.
I don't deny that it's powerful but I really hate locking other players out of the game. I think it also tends to take the deck in a different direction if we start going dirty. Myojin, Mindslaver etc.
With proper mulliganing and tutoring, you should be casting Skithiryx by turn three most games. Adding more ramp could only speed this up by a turn or so at best at the cost of consistency. Hatred is a card everyone suggests in Skithiryx but in practice it is absolutely terrible. Usually games play out in a manner where I cast Skithiryx with haste and attack for four. The next turn I equip and finish off. If we imagine Hatred instead of a sword, in this scenario we would only need to pay a mere two life. In the case we want to one-shot, then both Nightmare Lash and Lashwrite get the job done and Nightmare lash doesn't even make the cut for me!
Sign in Blood and Night's Whisper are nice cards but we are jumping from 1-4 mana via mana crypt, Sol Ring etc. Rarely are we going to be casting 2 CMC spells and these just don't give enough benefit per card to warrant their inclusion as far as I have seen in testing.
I guess I just don't see it as inherently dirty, at least not dirtier than trying to ramp out Skithiryx and kill someone on turn 6. The Myojin fits very well with what you're trying to do with the deck as well...maybe you could have a section of optional cards for people who want a fully optimized build for cutthroat games? I mean killing them quickly locks them out of the game too.
I'm a little confused as to how games are regularly playing out with this deck. You stated that you're usually casting Skithiryx on turn 3, with haste and an equipment in hand. I can't help but feel this is an overexageration even with ramp and tutors and I'm also a little surprised people are consistently unable to deal with Skithiryx by this stage of the game and if this is in fact the case then I still do not see the need to run alternate finishers over infect creatures.
Adding in more ramp will make this strategy more consistent not less consistent as you will more consistently have enough early ramp for this to be possible. Some notable exclusions from your list also include Chrome Mox, Mox Diamond & Worn Powerstone and I'd imagine that you're pretty close to being able to run Voltaic Keyas a ramper.
How do you feel about Pithing Needle?
I run it in my build and it does some serious work. Stops everything from Maze of Ith to Helm of Obediance.
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I like your build and was wondering if Unspeakable Symbol could be a good addition as it costs only life to use. Also, why no Cruel Tutor?
what do you think about adding: The Trident
The new equipment Sai of the Shinobi seems like an excellent card in the deck. It increases the Skittles clock by a turn for essentially zero mana.
I see a huge lack of targeted discard in the deck. In mono black it's really the only way to assure your threats will get through/not get destroyed.
I believe rasana intended to keep the deck from having a lot of hand disruption because he believes that people hes playing with should be able to play their cards. He goes into it a bit in this thread.
Is Demonic Collusion supposed to be Demonic Consultation?
It seems like a much better fit for the deck. Consult for LED isn't that dangerous.
I am a little confused about some of the midrange and high end cards included. It seems to me if the game plan is Turn 1 tutor for LED, turn 2 Skithiryx and ride it to the win you would want more cards that maximize that plan. I really like the idea of Shuko and the War Gear.