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  • 1

    posted a message on Colour Expectations
    I sometimes like to build things counter to regular expectations. Also, any Commander can be a Voltron Commander.

    I mean, if you get down to it, you could make essentially a venn diagram of all the colors, and see how their overlaps would show what the strengths of the colors would be.

    Building the deck first is not always a bad idea. my Trostani deck only picked Trostani as the commander after about 2/3 of the deck was built. It was built as a lands-matter deck to be centered around Glacial Chasm. As I started building the deck, there was a lot of ramp and playing extra lands, so I wanted landfall triggers - most landfall makes creature tokens - And then entered Trostani - Worked well with tokens, and would give me the life needed to get the time to find the chasm, and to pay for the upkeep.

    If you wanted pure expectations on colors, here we go:

    W - Some kind of white weenie/token swarm deck. Mobilization/Heliod stuff. Alternate: Artifact recursion control/combo.
    U - Hard Control. Everyone expects counter heavy, card draw, grind. Possibly even mill/draw/deck ideas. Alternate: Make sea creature tribal. Go for the big fish.
    B - Graveyard loops/Blood Artist/Gray Merchant of Asphodel kills. Alternate: Make them discard their hand. Specters everywhere.
    R - Artifact Recursion. Feldon/Daretti/Goblin Welder. OR Goblins. Alternate: Set everything on fire. I mean everything
    G - Ramp Ramp Big beats. Or elves. Alternate - Hurricane.

    WU - Tokens and control. Detain. Police. No fun for anyone. Kill everything, counter the rest. Grand Arbiter Augustion
    WB - Tokens. Sac outlets. Teysa. Grave Pact effects. Life drain and life steal.
    WR - Aggro. Either wide and hard, or something with high power/low life early on, trying to kill someone early. Maybe even some land D to seal the deal on the rest.
    WG - Long game. Recursion central. Good luck killing their board, and when you do, it'll just come right back. Incremental value, great removal.

    UB - Control and Remove all threats. Flashback to do it again. Cheap creatures with draw to refill the hand as they tear you apart.
    UR - Storm. It might not use storm cards, but they're going to cast 20 spells in a turn, and then you'll be dead.
    UG - +1 counters. Everywhere.

    BR - Aggro again, but with more expendable creatures and self-sac effects.
    BG - Graveyard's coming back.

    RG - Creatures go sideways, with more Overrun.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • 1

    posted a message on How does one choose cards for EDH?
    The first step is to know what you want to do. Sometimes this means picking a Commander, and thinking of what you want to with it, sometimes it involves picking a strategy, and seeing what Commander will best support that.

    Next depends on your budget, and your available cards. Sometimes you want to start with the cards you have, and just go through what you have and pull out anything that looks fun, interesting, might fit the strategy, are necessary pieces for those colors (removal) etc. Sometimes you'll start online instead, and find the cards that fit the strategy from online searches, and then try and see if you own them, or how to acquire them. Sometimes you're not sure of the strategy you want to follow, so you look up other lists online and see what people are doing with the card. Learning from repetition is absolutely valid, and every professional has learned in that manner. Artists copy good art, athletes learn proper forms, etc.

    From there - practice, learn, tweak, adapt. Every playgroup is different, and what works well in one area may have different results elsewhere. Talk to the people you play with, see what they think about the deck - they might have suggestions or feedback. Don't be afraid to experiment, especially in the early phases. Some of my decks I purposefully made drastic changes to in order to really try out different things.

    Finally, one great way to learn more is to simply ask for help! Create threads in these forums just as you did here, and say "Hey guys, I'm trying to find cards to achieve <this>, I've done a search for <this>, but I haven't found what I'm looking for. Is there something else I should search for, or that you'd recommend?" So on and so forth. Most of all, have fun with it! Don't be afraid to make your deck not perfect if it will be more fun. My Jori En deck runs Form of the Dragon, and my Trostani deck runs Sandwurm Convergence simply because they're fun. Smile

    I've built decks using every combination of those methods above. I've built from Commander first, and built from a strategy trying to find a Commander. I've pulled hundreds of cards from my collection, to building purely online then practically ordering 80% of a deck to my hands. Most important though is to play, and adjust.

    When I build from my collection, it's not unusual for me to pull out many hundreds of cards more than what I need before cutting down and focusing on what I want. I've pulled over 600 cards once when building a deck, which actually helped me define what strategy I wanted to follow and even gave me the framework for a future deck to build a different strategy that I liked.

    Online searches can be very powerful. I would suggest learning how to use these sites/systems to really refine what you want/need:
    • Card searches:
    • Deck Searches:
      • Check out the Primers on this site. They tend to be written to a higher level, and go beyond simply having a list of cards to explaining what they do and why they were chosen. This eliminates some of the guesswork involved.
      • Check out our Decklist Database. If you're looking for a particular commander, this can be a good place to start, as it'll put those available resources together.
      • EDHrec.com and tappedout.com both have Commander decklists and stats.

    Here's a few quick stories:
    • When I built my Chainer deck I routinely changed between 3 different main commanders, but also tried 4 other Commanders periodically in the Commandzone before I really settled down on Chainer. When I started to build the deck, it was even a completely different Commander, and even different set of colors before I decided to simply go Mono-Black.
    • When I built my Marath deck, I initially built it with a lands matter/landfall package, as well as a sunforger package. In testing, I quickly discovered that the two both took up too much space from each other, and I needed to split them appart. I ended up taking out the lands package, and started building that up without a Commander - once I realized what I wanted to do with it, I found Trostani, and it is now one of my longest lasting and favorite decks.
    • I once built a deck purely online, and tested, iterated, and refined it with online tools to the point that I discovered it was too powerful for my meta, and I never built it in paper.
    • When I built my Jenara deck, I had no idea what I wanted- I had a few key 'must include' cards, but no huge idea of how to relate them to each other - I pulled over 600 cards and started organizing them into synergies before deciding how to complete my vision.
    • My Tibor and Lumia deck has been rebuilt five times as completely different strategies, but built around the same playstyle. Since then, new commanders have encapsulated the theme and soul of each of those iterations into a single card that does the job better than T&L even could hope to do.

    I want to eventually build a reanimation or token commander deck for my first commander deck, but I don't know where to start. Let's say I've picked a commander. Where do I go from there? I can't just search: Good commander removal, pick out some good cards, than move on. How do I know how many cards I need of each type like removal and draw? How do I find the actual cards? Thanks in advance.

    Some of this comes down to knowledge, or preference. Some to searches. I've played and built enough decks that I know that I want certain cards in certain colors to handle my removal. For example, if I'm playing BW I know that I'll probably include Merciless Eviction and Vindicate or Utter End.

    Much like the previously mentioned 8x8 method, I tend to start similarly, but I like to have 40 lands as a base start, so I do 10's:
    10 Ramp, 10 Draw, 10 Removal, 10 small threats, 10 medium threats, 10 large threats. Of course, certain things may cross categories, so you might end up with more representation of each in your deck, for example adding Bloodgift Demon to your medium threats means you'll have a better chance of getting card draw in your games, while if you count it in your card draw, you might up your threat density.

    I used that system to build a deck for my (then 10yr old) nephew, and the deck works quite well.

    When it comes to removal, I like to also keep in mind what type of removal. I typically run 2-4 single target creature removal, 2-3 artifact/enchantment removal, 1-2 catch-alls, and 2-3 mass removal. You'll also want a mix of destroy/exile/shuffle, etc, in order to deal with things that are indestructible, etc. These may overlap some too. For example, in BW my removal package may look like:
    DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    1 Swords to Plowshares - Single Creature Removal
    1 Tragic Slip - Single Creature Removal
    1 Murder - Single Creature Removal
    1 Return to dust - Artifact/Ench Removal
    1 Crush Contraband - Artifact/Ench Removal
    1 Generous Gift - Catch All
    1 Utter End - Catch All
    1 Merciless Eviction - Mass Removal
    1 Tragic Arrogance - Mass Removal
    1 Hour of Revelation - Mass Removal

    I might then also have cards like Cavalier of Dawn or Dark Impostor in my threats as well.

    I am currently looking at either Ulasht, the Hate Seed or Nath of the Gilt-Leaf for a token commander. Thanks for replying!

    These are great choices for a token Commander! I do agree with previous posters that you may want to look at how you'd play them differently though.

    For example, with Nath of the Gilt-Leaf you might look into:
    • Adding a heavy discard element to your deck in order to utilize his ability more. Cards that make your opponent discard, or gain value when they do, like Larceny, Liliana's Caress, or Waste Not. However, this will make you a prime target, and makes you more reliant on your Commander to get value.
    • Utilizing some Elf synergies in order to make the tokens more powerful. Imperial Prefect and similar cards could be quite potent.
    • Using him as a starting point for tokens, but making the deck less reliant on the Commander, and going more large scale token swarm to utilize Overrun abilities.
    • Using the black identity to focus less on the swarm aspect of tokens, and utilize Nath as more of a constant source of sacrificial tokens for effect like Attrition, Blood Artist, and Gravepact.
    • Or it could be a mix of all of the above!

    While Nath seems more slow and steady to me, Ulasht seems to want to go bigger, faster. Ulasht needs more creatures out first to get the counters, but opens up different avenues of play:

    • You can play with +1 counter synergies.
    • or make a multicolor dependent deck (creatures that are both red AND green will provide Ulasht a +1 counter TWICE, so give better value)
    • or go bigger mana to use his ability more (Wood Elves early to get lands out, but still count as a creature later for Ulasht trigger)
    • You can also go for a combo route: Ivy lane Denizen will combo with Ulasht, as you'll remove a counter from Ulasht to make a token, but then Ivy lane will see the token made, and put a +1 counter back on Ulasht, allowing you to keep making more tokens.
    • You can play up the red damage aspect more, and run Torbran, Thane of Red Fell or Neko-te to boost the damage dealt insanely, or even Impact Tremors to deal damage as you make dudes.

    As you can see, there's lots of ways to build both of these, and this is just what I can think off the top of my head real fast. As you play them, you'll figure out even more ways to play/build them, and find what works best for you.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • 1

    posted a message on September Banlist Announcement - No Changes
    Scott Larabee:

    September 30, 2019

    No changes.

    No changes

    After the changes in July, we feel the format is in a fine state for now.

    3 new sets have released since then:

    - Commander 2020 is perhaps the best received Commander set ever.
    - Modern Horizons offers a slew of new goodies and Commanders (it got me to finally build a ninja themed deck, which I have been wanting to do for years).
    - Throne of Eldraine is now available and should provide many days (and knights) of 100-card shenanigans!

    We'll be back in 2020 with another update. Have fun everyone!

    Source: Scott Larabee - http://mtgcommander.net/Forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=19267
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • 1

    posted a message on Looking for the perfect 5drop for Vial Smasher/Thrasios
    As far as just large beaters go, Spiritmonger is an aggressive size and can regenerate, which lets it survive some wrath types. Vulturous Zombie, while having no defensive abilities, can can large very quickly in a multiplayer game, and the early large flier can get quite a few hits in.

    Body Double can be whatever you need it to be.

    Cipher Spells can give you free spells for extra triggers. I like Stolen Identity a lot.

    Spark Double or Sakashima the Imposter can double up on Vial Smasher.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • 1

    posted a message on [ELD] Mothership spoilers 9/16— Queen Linden and her retinue
    Things are way heated, and have long since passed being on topic. Locking this thread to let things cool off for now. I will re-open this thread in a few days.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 4

    posted a message on [ELD] Mothership spoilers 9/16— Queen Linden and her retinue
    Quote from H3RAC71TU5 »
    To be fair, it *is* pretty explicitly political, which makes it a culturally relevant artistic choice for the game. Hardly anything in the world related to human beings can be totally divorced from politics, which makes the forum policy against discussing it a little overweening imo.

    I would say that this issue shouldn't be *controversial*, but it evidently, sadly, is.

    There is no forum policy against discussion of themes and representation on cards or in art.

    There is a forum policy against racism, hate speech, flaming, personal attacks, etc.

    For some reason, so far, no conversation has managed to have the first, without the second.

    For example, a comment such as "I find it interesting that Wizards has chosen to have a much stronger abundance of female and minority characters this set's theming", and the following polite, on topic, discussion about the art and themes of spoiled cards would be acceptable.

    As a second example: "Women can't be knights, why are all the women taking men's roles? Why is Wizards making everything so gay? This isn't the Magic I signed up for. GG, this game suxks with these changes" - is not acceptable. Comments such as that will be infracted on sight.

    I agree with you that this topic should not be so controversial. And yet... it is.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 1

    posted a message on [Offtopic] Community Thread
    Quote from cryogen »
    Hey bob, I see they made you an admin. Congrats. Any big plans brewing?
    Right now I'm getting used to the ropes. ShadowLancer also got made admin, so at some point we'll need to sit down and see what we need to do on the site.

    I think I may need to merge some sub-forums here in Commander, just due to the change in the quantity and type of traffic and whatnot.

    In the first day of being admin, I learned that I was exactly right in my wanting to not ever to go for this.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • 1

    posted a message on Ayara, First of Locthwain
    Medieval fashion was quite a bit different from ours today. I see a lot of inspiration from various points of medieval fashion in the art style of this piece, from the large shoulders on the dress, the tight fitted top, a corset-looking addition, and a looser more flowing bottom part to the dress. Even the hat and veil fit in well. I think the artist did a pretty good job pulling together inspiration from various styles of courtly dress, and tying them together in a dark and sinister vibe that befits the card and colors.

    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 7

    posted a message on Ayara, First of Locthwain
    Enough. This is not the place.

    Personal attacks will not be tolerated. Sexist, Misogynistic, or other comments that insult or degrade a group of people will not be tolerated.

    From our Rules:

    Quote from Rules»
    Flaming is a hostile verbal attack directed at another person or group of people. Trolling is the act of deliberately provoking a hostile reaction from other users. These actions will not be tolerated. Additionally, harassing and flaming someone via PMs may trigger more severe offenses, up to and including a suspension.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 2

    posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion
    I am entirely too happy to see Witch's Cottage. Lands with basic types always make me happy.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
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