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  • posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion
    Quote from Lithl »
    Ugin's Conjurant is a spirit. With a colorless identity. That can be cast as a CMC 0 spell.

    Hello, Celestial Kirin!

    Armageddon for 0 mana ...... EEK!

    Quote from RedGauntlet »
    oh my, a top 10 won't be enough for the amount of cards i want from this set.

    I agree. The honorable mentions list will need an honorable mentions list...
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion
    Quote from FearDReaper »
    So no Rakdos Rare Legend? Wizards is Guildist?
    No rakdos legend, no rakdos walker

    To add insult to the injury, Simic and Selesnya both got two (not counting the hybrids)...

    I think what happened is that red got an additional Legend/Planeswalker over the other mono-colors (7 vs. 6) and that is where the Rakdos Legend went. Probably Neheb, Dreadhorde Champion or Sarkhan the Masterless.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion
    Thanks for the feedback guys!

    Most welcome.

    So, Command the Dreadhorde. Thoughts? Could be excellent value in a deck that has enough lifegain to support making it worth casting.

    Seems pretty legit, especially if some of the creatures you reanimate also give you life like Gray Merchant of Asphodel, Disciple of Bolas, or Malakir Bloodwitch. I also like that it is damage in one big chunk, so a single Circle of Protection: Black activation or similar effect will prevent the damage.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion
    Quote from FearDReaper »
    Question for you Varina players. Can you help convince me to switch to her from The Scarab God? Like I know she gives you acess to white, but this new Oketra anNecromancer's Covenant are really the only things white contributes to zombies specifically that looks worth playing to me. Those and maybe Unraveling Mummy too. There are also the 3 white any tribal goodstuff cards like Mirror Entity, Radient Destiny, Kindred Boon. So thats like 6 cards white contributes to tribal, then of course you have all the white goodstuff like Smothering Tithe, Land Tax, Removal etc.

    But The Scarab God is just so powerful lol. He just does it all. He cares about zombies, he pseudo evades tax, his activated ability is better, he does indirect damage to each opponent, he scrys and he has beefy stats to boot.

    I am currently on the fence and this new Oketra is just so good its really tempting to switch but Scary God is just sooooo good in the zone. Is the handful of white stuff worth losing him in the Zone?

    I think that the new God-Eternal Oketra is definitely worth adding white, although I am having some concerns over the WW in the casting cost. The ability to get a 4/4 token for each creature you play is fantastic. In fact, God-Eternal Oketra might be worth building a mono-white deck around...

    In my Varina build I also have the following white cards in my deck:

    In the end, I think it is just a matter of preference as you are right in saying that white doesn't give you a lot (you could add Wraths, Swords to Plowshares, Path to Exile, Anguished Unmaking, etc. to that list). The Scarab God is definitely a very powerful card and one I wouldn't mind being the Commander, and if that is working for you then I wouldn't necessarily jump ship.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Varina, Lich Queen - Zombie... Zombie.. Zombie.. Zombie Nation
    This looks like a cool build. It's been a while since the last post, have there been any updates since? I have a couple of thoughts on your inclusions:

    There have been some minor tweaks, but with the release of War of the Spark I'm going to do some overhauling. I haven't exactly figured out what I'm going to do, but there are some fundamental structural problems with my current build that I've been wanting to fix and it comes down to sacrificing a few sacred cows to do so.

    • I don't see Gravecrawler in here. Is there a reason for that? Don't have a copy? It's a solid inclusion for an easy zombie attack trigger or sac fodder - absolute gravy with Skullclamp too. In that vein, I recommend Carrion Feeder too - without being a disgustingly combo ready sac outlet it still provides instant speed sacrifice for death triggers.
    I used to run Gravecrawler, but I really wasn't running much that synergized with it, so I eventually pulled it to run Vindictive Lich. I think its fine, but it was just so underwhelming when I played it that I was actively looking for a reason to pull it after a while. With that said, this all occurred before Varina was printed, and the synergy with Varina makes this much more appealing. I should reconsider it.

  • How has Ghoulcaller Gisa worked out for you? I took my copy out of a build I pulled apart recently, and was thinking my Varina build could be the place for it. My deck isn't much for swarm though, so I wasn't totally sure.
  • I'm a fan of Ghoulcaller Gisa in that it is one of the best sac outlets that generate more creature power than you put into it; it acts a lot like Krenko, Mob Boss in a Goblin deck and it helps feed recursion engines and allows you to minimally commit cards to the board and still generate a massive creature presence given enough time. If your meta supports more grindy games, then Gisa can be an all-star.

  • Are you finding decent value from Gisa and Geralf? I used to run them as commander, and as much as I wanted them to work out well, they really didn't pop that much. I think they work well if you're busting out big threats every turn and making strong explosive plays around them, but they didn't do much for my low costed zombies.
  • They are an invaluable source of card advantage in the deck and one of the better creatures to play post-Wrath. I highly recommend them.

  • How kind is Graveborn Muse to you? She seems like an auto-include here, but I left her out of my list on account of her absolutely bludgeoning my life total. I prefer to run her in a build with a few zombies, but when you have an entire horde she can really cut into your clock, and I find with this commander my life total gets chipped away reasonably quick. I currently run Midnight Reaper as a reasonable option for draw with a little less risk.
  • I've grown to be less of a fan. I usually wait to someone Wraths the board to play it, but the deck has gotten to the point where its not really a necessity anymore. The only caveat I would give you is that if your meta is full of graveyard hate then they can shut down a lot of CA engines in the deck, so in that case I would try and balance draw effects and graveyard recursion effects.

  • I noticed a few of your removal spells are a little on the high-costed side - Dregs of Sorrow, Zombie Apocalypse and Dark Salvation particularly. I have a couple of direct recommendations there, and one indirect - Retribution of the Meek and Citywide Bust mostly will keep your horde unscathed and clean house for you. Retribution is a bit costly to pick up these days, so I run the latter.
  • X4B is just one of my pet favorite cards; but I like running it in places where I don't want to Wrath the board but I need to remove multiple creatures. As it stands, I think I'm better off playing more threats and forcing others to Wrath than worrying about mass creature kill on my end. This is probably one of those sacred cows that need to go on the grill...
    Zombie Apocalypse isn't really a removal spell in this deck; its all about the mass reanimation.
    Dark Salvation was s surprise all-star removal spell. I highly recommend it.

  • The other removal I run is Archfiend of Ifnir. He's in that tricky 5 CMC slot, but he's totally worth it. Because Varina's trigger causes discard anyway, you build an army, cast Archfiend, swing, and pre-combat the board just clears. He really is devastatingly good. I run a couple of other discard outlets with Forgotten Creation, Necromancer's Stockpile and Geier Reach Sanitarium, but he's worth considering nonetheless.
  • I like the idea of running Archfiend of Ifnir. I hadn't really gone back and looked at things that might synergize well with Varina other than whether they advanced the Zombie theme or not, but this is totally better than Dregs or any other Wrath effect. I also like the idea of Necromancer's Stockpile and Geier Reach Sanitarium.

  • You mentioned in the spoilers thread that your 5CMC spot is causing some wonkiness with your curve. I can see a couple of cards around that area that might be worth considering dropping - Vengeful Pharaoh seems really conditional (as well as B heavy), Gempalm Polluter is a pretty conditional life drain too. Lastly, how often are you getting Josu Vess, Lich Knight's kicker cost to work out? It's a lot of mana to pay, and the only way to get his pals is to hardcast him, which seems rough - I don't know about you, but my list is lean for mana quite often.

  • Vengeful Pharaoh hardly ever gets played; he gets discarded to Varina and kills anything that dares attack me.
    Gempalm Polluter also never gets played; he gets cycled for 2 mana and gets recurred.
    Josu Vess, Lich Knight is okay. At 4 mana he's fine, and in a game that drags out he comes back and is a one-man army one you get to 10 mana. I guess a lot depends on your meta, but if games last enough turns then Josu Vess is pretty good.

    The cards I'm looking at cutting in the 5+ mana range are thing like Necromancer's Covenant, From Under the Floorboards, Stir the Sands, Army of the Damned, Grimgrin, Corpse-Born, Sidisi, Undead Vizier, and the aforementioned Dregs of Sorrow. I'm also going to probably cut Moan of the Unhallowed and Graveborn Muse from the 4-slot. I think that cutting the non-creature spells that make Zombie tokens and don't do anything else need to go as they don't have any synergy with the mass-reanimation spells, and I can get cheaper and better by sticking with creatures.

    The deck looks really cool. I've really enjoyed playing Varina so far, hope it's going well for you too.

    Thanks. I liked playing Zombie tribal and the fact that there are so many cool Zombies that do interesting things makes the deck play out a little differently every time. The printing of Varina has definitely made this a much more fun deck to play. I'm looking forward to "fixing" the deck and eliminating the little sources of frustration that the mana curve has caused, and I'm definitely looking forward to playing some of the new cards like Liliana, Dreadhorde General, God-Eternal Oketra, and God-Eternal Bontu (which of course, are 5-6 mana cards so I may end up right back where I started.... grrr)
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion

    My problem with amass is that it doesn't reliably make you wider, and it doesn't make you taller quick enough to matter. So with that in mind, I may playtest some things, but I'm very hesitant to put a lot of stock in amass. I may be wrong, they just don't seem that efficient, although I can concede that at a lower place on the curve they could be good value.

    This was my initial concern as well, but if we are only running 3-4 Amass cards in a 99-card deck then I think we can safely say that those Amass cards will create tokens 90% of the time. I would think that you would need to have 10+ Amass cards before you start running into having multiple Amass cards in hand at once, and even then there are enough sac outlets and other reasons for Zombie Army tokens to die that you can manipulate the odds overwhelmingly in your favor. I think that for Commander purposes, 'Amass X' can reliably be considered 'Create a X/X Zombie token'.

    For what it's worth, that 5 slot I have trouble with too. A lot of my current five drops are too slow (Grimgrin, Corpse-Born) or too expensive (Havengul Lich), so I've been looking for utility lower to the ground myself. Interestingly enough, the one I'm most excited about you don't seem to fancy - Soul Diviner. I run Mikaeus, the Unhallowed, Noosegraf Mob, Carrion Feeder, and at least a couple of walkers - plus I've been keeping my eyes peeled for a local copy of Glacial Chasm. Turning any of these counters into cards is gravy for me, and it's well costed too. It really hurts my feelings that he can't remove counters from enchantments, because I run both Tombstone Stairwell and Mystic Remora, but it's still decent utility for a low cost.

    Soul Diviner is at a minimum an interesting card, but you really need more stuff for him to remove counters from in order for me to really get excited about it. The thing is that his default of being "just a 2/3 for 2 mana" isn't necessarily all that bad in a dedicated Zombie deck that wants to beat face. I don't think that I would go out of my way to run sub-par cards that have counters that I want to remove, but it is a nice feature to have when it comes up. For a deck that needs to often rebuild post-Wrath effect, having as many different CA engines in the deck as you can is always welcome.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion

    I'm curious, as I know you've got a Varina build kicking about - what do you think of the amass mechanic? Personally, I'm a little disappointed in it myself. It seems slow and underwhelming for this format. I'm also a little disappointed with the zombie lords only granting mechanics to zombie tokens - my build isn't all that swarm related, so I'm really not looking to add a ton to that particular build. God-Eternal Oketra is an auto-add, and likely Soul Diviner too - it's well costed for my curve and gives me options for draw. Otherwise, I was hoping for more.

    I haven't quite decided on what I'm going to do with my Varina deck. The last few times I've played it, it has kinda disappointed me in that I just run too many 5-drops in the deck and the mana curve is all wonky. The way I look at it, some of the Amass cards give me some cheap options that work well in a Zombie tribal swarm deck.

    Specific cards-wise, here is at least what I'm thinking for the Zombie/Amass cards:
    God-Eternal Oketra: Getting a 4/4 Zombie Warrior with Vigilance tacked onto each creature spell I play is really good.
    Commence the Endgame: Being able to Amass for 4-5 seems okay, so I'm looking at this as a potential on-theme Mulldrifter with trade-offs.
    Crush Dissent: I don't run counters in my Varina deck, and I don't think this is good enough to make an exception.
    Eternal Skylord: Solid card, generating 2 bodies that take advantage of mass-pump effects and granting evasion to my tokens (of which I currently run 19 cards plus Varina that make tokens).
    God-Eternal Kefnet: As a 4/5 flying Zombie for 4 mana, this is great. The occasional getting a free copy of a removal spell or token generator is just gravy even if it won't happen all that often.
    Lazotep Plating: Too reactive for this kind of deck, but it is otherwise fine.
    Relentless Advance: Not good enough
    Dreadhorde Invasion: I'm actually leaning towards this being potentially really good.
    Eternal Taskmaster: As a 2/3 for 2 mana, this if fine. The Raise Dead ability is a little costly to use, but it is nice potential value when you need it I guess.
    God-Eternal Bontu: I really like this card, as it plays well with token generation and with Vengeful Dead, Diregraf Captain, Plague Belcher effects.
    Herald of the Dreadhorde: I don't think this is good enough.
    Lazotep Reaver: This might be a decent playable, giving me two bodies to use.
    Liliana, Dreadhorde General: This card seems really strong and will definitely be going in.
    Shriekdiver: Not good enough.
    Spark Reaper: Comparable to Vampiric Rites and Thallid Soothsayer, I'm thinking that this might make the cut.
    Toll of the Invasion: Probably not, although it is not necessarily a bad idea. It's probably on par with a Ravenous Rats, which makes it a no.
    Vizier of the Scorpion: Again, getting two bodies makes Anthem effects have a higher impact, and granting Deathtouch to tokens is pretty good.
    Soul Diviner: This will probably be just a 2/3 for two mana in a lot of decks.

    So there are some things to consider at least, but unfortunately a lot of the heavy hitters are in the 5-6 mana range running head-on into the mana curve problems my deck already has. Some of the cheaper Amass guys like Vizier of the Scorpion and Lazotep Reaver are going to be better than you think if they play out like I think they will. In the end, I'm going to need to make some decision on whether to add in more cheap Zombies or stay with the current gameplan and add more artifact ramp. I think that decision more than anything will decide on what to do with some of these cards.

    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion
    Jesus. With enough mana those Finales look great. Not sure if they’re auto includes but they look fun if nothing else.

    I'm think the Finales are pretty good for the most part.

    Finale of Glory XWW
    Create X 2/2 white Soldier creature tokens with vigilance. If X is 10 or more, also create X 4/4 white Angel creature tokens with flying and vigilance.

    With a mana cost equal to Martial Coup, you get 2/2's instead of 1/1's in exchange for not having a Wrath when you might need it. You are otherwise trading Instant speed for Sorcery speed and one mana less when compared to White Sun's Zenith, plus getting the X>10 bonus. I like this one and will likely be trying to fit it in my token deck.

    Finale of Revelation XUU
    Draw X cards. If X is 10 or more, instead shuffle your graveyard into your library, draw X cards, untap up to five lands, and you have no maximum hand size for the rest of the game.
    Exile Finale of Revelation.

    On par with Braingeyser, but otherwise unexciting at Sorcery speed.

    Finale of Eternity XBB
    Destroy up to three target creatures with toughness X or less. If X is 10 or more, return all creature cards from your graveyard to the battlefield.

    I actually like this one. Being able to have a more precise instrument to destroy creatures en masse is sometimes preferred to Wrathing the whole board away, and the X>10 bonus being a mass reanimate is something worth sinking all that Cabal Coffers mana into.

    Finale of Promise XRR
    You may cast up to one target instant card and/or up to one target sorcery card from your graveyard each with converted mana cost X or less without paying their mana costs. If a card cast this way would be put into your graveyard this turn, exile it instead. If X is 10 or more, copy each of those spells twice. You may choose new targets for the copies.

    This is a nice card for burn or spellslinger decks, I intend to try this out in a couple different spots. I actually see this being more of a Modern or Legacy burn card where X=1 can flash back a Lightning Bolt and a Lava Spike.

    Finale of Devastation XGG
    Search your library and/or graveyard for a creature card with converted mana cost X or less and put it onto the battlefield. If you search your library this way, shuffle. If X is 10 or more, creatures you control get +X/+X and gain trample until end of turn.

    I'm wondering if the names for the red and green Finales were swapped at some point... This one seems fairly straightforward and is right up there with Green Sun's Zenith with a couple important differences; it is not limited to Green creatures and it can reanimate creatures, both of which make this well worth the additional green mana . Interesting X>10 ability that will rarely be used when people can just cast this for X=8 and get Craterhoof Behemoth.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day: Nefarox, Overlord of Grixis
    For Jace, Unraveler of Secrets, if the the -2 ability was for "non-land permanent" instead of bouncing just creatures then I think it would see some significant (albeit not necessarily widespread) play. As it is, its just not good enough.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Which wrath creature(s)?
    I'm partial to Massacre Wurm and Kagemaro, First to Suffer, although I see Massacre Girl making an appearance in a few of those decks.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion
    Quote from Incanur »
    I just counted 39 cards from War of the Spark that I definitely want for my EDH decks. 39! & I want multiple copies of some of them. There are also another 10-15 cards I might find a place for.

    I can't recall another set that I wanted so much from. Wow. & there are some 50 cards left unrevealed.

    (Granted, I do have more decks now they I've had previously.)

    This set is fantastic for Commander, and it seems like almost every deck I own is getting something out of this set. There are also going to be quite a few good cards that I just don't have any place for. I think that the only thing holding a few cards back is that some of them are probably costed 1 mana too high in some cases, but I don't think that is necessarily a bad place to be for some of the effects that this set has to offer. The best thing is that there are a lot of really unique effects as well as effects we have seen before but done in totally different ways. I've got so many ideas on a lot of these cards that I may actually write up a whole set review if for nothing else than to try and get all my thoughts out before I forget.

    On top of there being lots of good cards, there are some cards that are outright game-changers; Ashiok, Dream Render, Karn, the Great Creator, Dovin, Hand of Control, and Teferi, Time Raveler are a total beating against 95% of the gameplan in some decks, Bolas's Citadel looks like a combo powerhouse, and there are plenty of things that seem undercosted that the more expensive stuff might just not matter.

    And looking at all the Proliferate in this set and the number of Planeswalkers that will potentially see play in Commander, I'm wondering if I should be packing Aether Snap, Thief of Blood, and/or Vampire Hexmage in some of my black decks that can tutor up answers as a way to combat counters (similar to running a few GY hate spells). Black seems like it is the anti-counter color, so I'm wondering if this is just something that black should be focusing on to help reign in a table.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Planar Celebration
    I personally believe it is a very bad storytelling practice to tell a story where you can't let the bad guy win. That should always be on the table, and a writer should shape their villain's agenda with an eye to potentially letting them win so that the stakes are real. But that's not how it's done. Stakes are seldom real except in horror.

    Didn’t the bad guys win in New Phyrexia? Didn’t Nicol Bolas win on Amonkhet?

    As for the actual card, I think that this will make some waves in EDH and potentially Standard depending on whether a Planeswalker deck emerges from the metagame.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Help with Massacre Girl MBC deck. What creatures to run?
    The best way to generate fodder for her is Endrek Sahr, Master Breeder. At a minimum, when you cast Massacre Girl with Endrek Sahr in play, the 5 Thrulls and Endrek Sahr will die along with anything else with toughness 7 or less.

    I would also consider using Palace Siege as another Oversold Cemetery effect.

    Another card to consider is Pitiless Plunderer.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day: Nefarox, Overlord of Grixis
    Quote from 3drinks »

    Can't imagine this makes the cut in any reasonably tuned (anything above precon level) deck. The payoffs just aren't there for the four mana invested.

    Agreed. The card seems great up until the point where it reads "It deals X damage to you", after which you wonder whether you should be Donateing the sucker instead (at which point, just use Demonic Pact, Immortal Coil, or Forbidden Crypt)
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day: Nefarox, Overlord of Grixis
    Upwelling actually came up in a recent discussion on the best ways to store excess mana, and with the removal of mana burn from the rules this is THE best way to store up excess mana. It's even better than Kruphix, God of Horizons in that the mana keeps its color.

    As for the deck of the day concept, something like that was tried once (thread can be found here). I really liked the concept and the feedback I got for my Uril Enchantress deck was excellent, but I think one deck per day is probably a lot. Maybe call it "Deck of the Day" but really have like 3 week (Mon, Wed, Fri).
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
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