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  • posted a message on Miraculous Kaalia (Seeker of Zeniths)
    Quote from 3drinks »
    The 2 for 1 of Herald of Torment's bestow effect. He makes something huge then when you wipe or otherwise spot kill the creature it's enchanting, you still have a 3/3 flyer which demands another answer. Or on it's own, it's still a body you can easily cast on it's own, which is a pretty great spot to have.

    I could see this having more of an impact in 1v1 commander, but in mutliplayer I still feel that Herald lacks the power we are looking for. 2 for 1 isn't good enough in my experience. We can agree to disagree on that one I suppose Smile

    Quote from 3drinks »
    I think Rakdos 2.0 is a bit of a trap, he plays better as commander than in the ninety-nine. When I tested him out in original Kaalia where I could get around his cast requirement, I found him underwhelming as he does not reduce coloured costs. At best, yes, I did resolve a Razaketh for just BBB, but that felt like his real hard ceiling. He's much stronger when he's deploying Wurmcoils and Ulamogs for 0. Without him, I'm still going to struggle to get to my six plus drops, and that's why I always aire on the side of caution with respect and care to my mana curve.

    I think one difference between Kaalia 1.0 and 2.0 is that we will have a much higher concentration of ADD in the deck with Zenith Seeker. At least we should if we are interested in making the most of her ability. We should have multiple ADD in our hand at any given time. In theory, Rakdos should allow us to play two 4-6cmc creatures in the same turn more reliably. Kaalia fills our hand, and Rakdos helps those ADD get onto the battlefield. If we are able to deal 4 damage to someone, instead of paying 7RRWW for Stormbreath Dragon and Sunblast Angel we are just paying RRWW allowing us to get those creatures out on the same turn. And I still feel that 6cmc creatures should be the exception to the rule. 5cmc and lower being the sweet spot. I agree that Rakdos can lend a false sense of security and we should still be leery of anything 6 cmc and over. Rakdos is there for a chance of increased efficiency, not to cheat huge creatures into play.

    Quote from 3drinks »
    We have eight legendaries that would turn on Mox Amber, and seven of those eight are four plus cmc. I don't believe this to be consistent enough at all to justify that mox.

    I feel that Kaalia alone justifies the mox. She is cheap and doesn't draw hate. She should stay in play. If she gets removed, we get another trigger. For a zero cost ramp (especially one of the cheaper ones), i think the risk is worth it. Again, this is probably something that needs to be tested.

    Next, I would like to voice a few things I've been mulling over in my head:

    Thematically, I strongly feel that this iteration of Kaalia demands a solid ETB theme to fully optimize the deck. Kaalia, Zenith Seeker by herself is actually pretty weak. You get one trigger off her, and you might be lucky to dig up 2 or at best 3 ADD. Because we are running the more efficiently costed ADD (and we can't reliably cheat them into play), none of these hits are going to be game winning. By themselves, they are good value but not enough to win. You need to consistently field smaller threats to build up to a win. And what happens when someone board wipes? Without proper support that can be devastating even with Kaalia's trigger. We can just keep digging up threats but we need to be prepared for that inevitability. For these reasons I think we need to maximize and abuse these smaller creatures to their fullest potential. That's where ETB support cards come in. To get an ETB trigger we either need to cast, blink, or reanimate. I will post my revised list soon, but this is the primary theme of the deck. Creatures entering the battlefield. Furthermore, I think we especially need reliable ways to trigger our commander's ability as many times as possible. Aside from blink, that means being able to sacrifice her and recast her from our command zone. While this gets more and more expensive, it does work. Victimize, Diabolic Intent and perhaps Ravenous Demon or Demonic Taskmaster might help fill this role.

    Second, I think we should address the Worldgorger Dragon combo. Unlike with Kaalia 1.0, Kaalia 2.0 and Worldgorger Dragon can win us the game, allowing us to put all of our ADD into our hand with infinite mana at our disposal. If we don't have a game winning ETB ability already in play, that should be easy enough to make happen. You can also just cast something like Aurelia's Fury using the infinite mana. I think you could bring this list into cEDH territory if you wished, just building around this combo. But I think you and I both don't want to go that route. However, I am not opposed to at least having the combo in the deck and maindecking a few support cards for it because it is on theme. I guess I'd just like to hear an explanation for why you aren't using it because I think it can enable a consistent win and it combos directly with our commander.

    Third, I've been thinking about what darrenhabib said in my thread about the land destruction package (it's like "holding a gun to your head") and after thinking it through I generally agree. I predict that things like Winter Orb, Armageddon, etc... will end up backfiring. Mostly because we aren't running a reliable way to circumvent mana costs like we did with Kaalia 1.0. We also aren't necessarily running any high cost ADD that can win the game on their own once in play. But we still need some lockdown, and I think an alternative lockdown strategy that actually has a lot of synergy with Zenith Seeker is global discard and hand hate, especially if we ourselves are running a reanimation package. I don't yet know exactly what this looks like but cards like Sire of Insanity are what I'm talking about.

    Some individual card possibilities:

    Bolas's Citadel might have some potential in this list, especially if you are going with the hand hate strategy. We just need a source of lifegain. At the very least this gets rid of top-decked lands which is nice with Kaalia. It just strikes me that we can have some issues getting access to our non-ADD spells in an efficient and synergistic way. I think this deck prefers ADD whenever possible but there are some cards that just need to be in here and are not ADD. I think Citadel also has some synergy with Scroll Rack and Sensei's Divining Top. Probably something worth exploring.

    I feel that Land Tax is an auto-include, and I am glad to see you have put it in your list. This is easily the most efficient way to concentrate the deck into ADD hits for Kaalia when you consider that about 1/3 of the deck is lands. Crucible of Worlds is probably smart as well considering this fact, especially if one chooses the discard strategy or even land destruction route.

    Why no Dragon Tempest? I guess I feel that without Kaalia 1.0 who circumvents the needs for haste, we actually need haste enables more than ever for this iteration. At least if you plan on attacking in a competitive manner.

    Skithiryx, the Blight Dragon strikes me as being an efficiently costed card that can put players on a clock. Something that other 5cmc creatures have a hard time doing. Worth some consideration?

    Late edit: Panharmonicon could be pretty broken in this deck. It works very well with Kaalia but will get more mileage the more ETB effects you run.

    Welp, that pretty much exhausts my thoughts for now. Looking forward to your response.

    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Miraculous Kaalia (Seeker of Zeniths)
    Heartless Summoning seems great for this deck!

    With the deathtouch I was referring to Embodiment of Agonies. Bad grammar on my part.

    Can you elaborate on the "2 for 1" interaction you mentioned? I'm not following.

    What are your thoughts on Rakdos, Lord of Riots? In my mind this can be a solid way to effectively trim down some of our costs. While that means we still shouldn't sleeve things like Reya Dawnbringer it means we should have a better chance at casting some of our 5cmc ADD twice per turn. It works better with perhaps a little burn of some kind, finding synergy with cards like Stormbreath Dragon or Demanding Dragon. Obviously since Rakdos is a demon, he's got bonus synergy with Kaalia. Generally, I feel that the more ADD we have that are efficient and have a significant impact on the battlefield, the better off we will be. Remember that Kaalia's ability means that anything that isn't an ADD is going to the bottom of our library.

    Another card that sticks out to me is Mox Amber. Because Kaalia is minimally costed we should be able to use the mox to effectively ramp into our ADD, playing a 5cmc creature on turn 4. The nature of Kaalia's ETB ability means that she isn't going to be attracting spot removal like a magnet, thereby further increasing the reliability of the mox. Even if Kaalia is not in play, we have a lot of other supportive legendary creatures in the deck.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Miraculous Kaalia (Seeker of Zeniths)
    I really like what you are doing here 3drinks! I'm writing up a more in depth response, but I just wanted to point out that Embodiment of Agonies could be a really efficient beater. It definitely fits more into my list because of the higher density of discard effects, but even for yours I think I would choose it over some of the other beaters you have. Herald of Torment particularly feels like it doesn't have enough impact. The combination of flying and deathtouch stand out as being strong. Reminiscent of Vampire Nighthawk.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Niv-Mizzet, Parun ~ Combo/Control

    Hi there! My name is Rowan, and I am the author of the now retired primer over here. Something happened when the forums were in flux, and I lost my login. I've played this iteration for many years headed by Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind, but when Parun was printed I saw that it was largely a cut and dry upgrade, so I switched to Niv 3.0, Niv-Mizzet, Parun and never looked back.

    I definitely noticed that the deck played a little different. Having such a strong draw engine in my command zone was a huge benefit. I didn't necessarily have to rely on tutoring up Consecrated Sphinx or Alhammarret's Archive to get a fat hand. I just needed to cast a lot of spells (and of course cast my commander/keep him protected).

    My eventual goal is to write up a cEDH Primer for this deck because I see it as being a logical evolution of my old primer. I find that the process of putting together a primer really helps me workshop and hone the deck, thanks to all the feedback and my thought process in writing.

    To begin, rather than list the very best cards for the deck, I'm going to list the deck exactly as I currently own it in paper, card for card. My intent is to ask for feedback as far as upgrades and also workshop the deck with the community. I am returning back to the game after a few years absence, so there are many cards that I'm not familiar with yet. Please make suggestions. I have also observed that I'm pretty rusty with the game itself, not always making the best plays. I really aim to humble myself and learn from the community and my opponents.

    DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    1 Niv-Mizzet, Parun

    LANDS (35)
    1 Command Tower
    1 Fiery Islet
    1 Sulfur Falls
    1 Steam Vents
    1 Reflecting Pool
    1 Shiven Reef
    1 Cascade Bluffs
    1 Vivid Creek
    1 Vesuva

    1 Forgotten Cave
    1 Tolaria West
    1 Mikokoro, Center of the Sea
    1 Remote Isle
    1 Terramorphic Expanse
    1 Evolving Wilds
    1 Academy Ruins
    1 Ghost Quarter
    1 Reliquary Tower
    1 Lonely Sandbar

    10 Island
    7 Mountain

    1 Chrome Mox
    1 Mana Vault
    1 Sol Ring
    1 Coldsteel Heart
    1 Saphire Medallion
    1 Talisman of Creativity
    1 Chromatic Lantern
    1 Coalition Relic
    1 Thran Dynamo
    1 Gilded Lotus

    1 Temporal Mastery
    1 Time Warp

    1 Mystical Tutor
    1 Gamble
    1 Fabricate
    1 Trinket Mage
    1 Spellseeker
    1 Long-Term Plans
    1 Intuition
    1 Whir of Invention
    1 Reality Scramble
    1 Tezzeret the Seeker

    1 Winds of Change
    1 Windfall
    1 Wheel of Fortune
    1 Fateful Showdown
    1 Mindmoil
    1 Time Spiral

    1 Mission Briefing
    1 Shreds of Sanity
    1 Mystic Retrieval
    1 Mizzix's Mastery

    1 Sensei's Divining Top
    1 Faithless Looting
    1 Brainstorm
    1 Impulse
    1 Trade Routes
    1 Frantic Search

    1 Consecrated Sphinx
    1 Rhystic Study
    1 Alhammarret's Archive

    1 Pact of Negation
    1 Flusterstorm
    1 Force of Negation
    1 Swan Song
    1 Counterspell
    1 Counterbalance
    1 Forbid
    1 Foil
    1 Cryptic Command
    1 Mindbreak Trap

    1 Basilisk Collar
    1 Chaos Warp
    1 Devastation Tide
    1 All is Dust
    1 Rebuild
    1 Propaganda
    1 Cyclonic Rift

    1 Paradox Engine
    1 Reiterate
    1 Inner Fire
    1 Comet Storm
    1 Isochron Scepter
    1 Omniscience

    Possible Upgrades:

    My next big investment will most likely be a Scroll Rack and I would swap it in for Trade Routes. I really love Trade Routes as a card, but Scroll Rack is an obvious improvement and allows a broken counter lock combo with Counterbalance. It is also very tutor-able with my artifact tutors already in the deck. Overall I think this would be the most bang for my buck.

    I would also like to upgrade my mana base. I am missing a few multi-color lands. I am eyeing Prismatic Vista of course. A Scalding Tarn would be lovely, but I guess I'm holding out for a reprint. Mana rock wise, I think a Mana Crypt would go the farthest. Mox are nice too, particularly Mox Diamond. I remember when I could have grabbed one for $40 and I thought that was high at the time! Riptide Laboratory is a relatively inexpensive card that I think could add some value, as is Cephalid Coliseum

    A Force of Will would replace Foil but I don't particularly feel that would add much to the deck. I think I would rather have a Mana Drain as the ramp effect can be a great boost.

    Show and Tell is something I'm a bit on the fence about. It can certainly get me an early Omniscience or Consecrated Sphinx but that's about it. It doesn't have a whole lot of synergy beyond those two cards.

    Temporal Mastery could be worth it. As could Snapcaster Mage, although I am liking my current recursion cards just fine. You might say that Mystic Retrieval is sub-par but it plays very well with Intuition.

    Choice of Win-con:

    I need to decide what win-con I will be sticking with. This is probably the biggest question I have right now. Besides Mindmoil/Omniscience there are a few different win conditions currently listed in the deck. There is Paradox Engine/Isochron Scepter and there is Inner Fire/Comet Storm. I am aware that I should probably choose one or the other and swap in some additional support cards for it because currently the deck is feeling like it doesn't know what it wants to do. There are certainly arguments in favor of either win-con. I would likely swap in Lightning Bolt or Dramatic Reversal if I choose the former, and Curiosity and Enter the Infinite if I choose the latter. Right now am I playing with both because I want to see which one seems the most consistent.

    The latter is great with the recursion cards I have in the deck. It's fairly easy to cast Inner Fire a bunch of times and hit everyone for lethal damage even if I don't have my deck in my hand. Reiterate makes infinite mana with Inner Fire also and most often it doesn't need to be infinite to be lethal. One of my favorite plays is to cast Intuition targeting Inner Fire, Comet Storm, and Mystic Retrieval. This the win-con that I have the most experience with. It works well. The only drawback to it really is that the pieces to it are less useful early in the game, and if one piece gets exiled, the other piece is mostly a dead card. When this has happened before I have gone for the Mindmoil win instead.

    Paradox Engine is an incredibly powerful effect, but after playing with it for a while, I am hyper aware that I am not using it to its highest potential in this list. It works very well alone if I have a few mana rocks on the board, giving me massive amounts of mana per turn, but that is about all it does if I don't have scepter. I have plenty of artifact tutors in the list, and I can recur it with Academy Ruins. I don't like permanent based win-cons in the list as a rule because my experience in more competitive play has been that people actually save mana open for instant speed removal.

    Potential Swaps:

    The following are the cards I am eyeing the most as potential includes:

    Fellwar Stone, Commander's Sphere, Darksteel Ingot, Wayfarer's Bauble, Sky Diamond, Fire Diamond - Something that I've noticed that it pays to get the Parun out as early as possible. I also struggle sometimes to get the colored mana I need to cast him. Ramp in general is what can get this deck into the competitive zone. And the fact that I am not running green means I have to rely on artifacts to do this. I can't exactly afford a Mox Diamond right now, so these are some alternatives. Ramp is also increases the chance of me being able to hard-cast Omniscience, which is usually enough to win me the game.

    The Locust God - chump blockers for days!

    Narset's Reversal - cheap copy effects are powerful in multiplayer. I can copy other player's early ramp spells and tutors. Later on they also act as a pseudo counterspell. I particularly like this new card for its versatility and I would run it before things like Reverberate or Twincast for that reason.

    Reality Shift, Evacuation, Blasphemous Act, Aetherize - I've cut out some counters/removal for ramp, tutors and recursion, but sometimes I wish I had just a bit more of the former.

    Archmage's Charm - this is a great counter. Heavy on blue but I think it's worth it. A mini Cryptic Command.

    Scour from Existence - I find myself wishing I had a Vindicate effect in this deck but the fact that this costs as much as All is Dust likely makes it a no-go. Chaos Warp works fairly well.

    Leyline of Anticipation, Vedalken Orrey - casting handcycling effect at instant speed is very powerful. For a control deck, this is a really nice effect, but is it necessary. I still haven't found a solid home for either of these cards in my list.

    Echo of Eons, Tolarian Winds, Reforge the Soul, Days Undoing, Memory Jar, Diminishing Returns - one more handcycling effect would probably be welcome. I'm also not sure how much I like Fateful Showdown.

    Personal Tutor, Merchant Scroll - more tutors the better right? Of the ones available these were the most narrow so they haven't made the list. That isn't to say that can't though.

    Baral, Chief of Compliance - of the cost reducing effects, I think this one is pretty efficient.

    Tribute Mage, Venser, Shaper Savant - in order to really enable Reality Scramble, I would feel better about having one more creature in the deck. ETB effects are good with that plan.

    The Immortal Sun - six is definitely high on my curve and competing with my commander so this is probably a no-go, but I still like it... a-lot.

    Show and Tell - like I said above, this is good support for Omniscience, but doesn't have great synergy with the rest of the deck. Currently I am running Reality Scramble which seems to be a better choice overall and shouldn't be a dead card.

    As Foretold - I have leaned toward a more midrange control deck and I think this card can get out of hand pretty fast. It is amazing with either of the flash enablers. My only issue with it is that it is a completely dead card late game - literally the last thing I would want to top deck past turn 6 or so. I like 95% of my cards to be useful at any point in the game.

    Finale of Promise, Snapcaster Mage, Argivian Restoration - of the recursion cards that I don't have in the deck, these are the most appealing, but are they any better than what I am currently using?

    Aetherflux Reservoir - yet another potential win-con. This would probably go in the Basilisk Collar spot if were to run it but my gut says that it's win more. I'm curious to hear what your experiences have been with it.

    Mind's Eye, Recurring Insight, Pull from Tomorrow - sometimes I wish I had one more solid hand fattening card, although I think Curiosity or Enter the Infinite should probably go in first. I don't particular feel good when I cast these kinds of cards though. As a truly competitive deck, sure. But for fun and ingenuity, not as much.

    Future Sight - This is a very powerful effect and works great with Sensei's Divining Top. Experimental Frenzy has also caught my eye. The problem is that the mana invest can be a bit high. I find that I don't have room for it and not de-power the deck somewhere else equally important.

    Extract, Jester's Cap - sometimes I find that I am facing off against some other heavy combo players. so much so, that they rely on a single card to win - an example is Food Chain Prossh, Skyraider of Kher which I also own, although mine isn't as focused on Food Chain. Removing that one card can mean the difference between a quick loss and actually playing the game. Against equally competitive decks, I think these can be a useful effect.

    Dream Halls - I really like how this card makes you think. With three other players at the table, it can make for some very interesting and intense games. It costs half as much as Omniscience and it allows me to cast my commander, unlike Omniscience. I've gone back and for with this and Omniscience many times. However, I have found that more often that not Omniscience allows a win, whereas Dream Halls can pretty easily backfire, especially if there are other blue players at the table. They both have pros and cons, but I think Omniscience is more consistent. Dream Halls is more fun.

    Well folks, that pretty much exhausts where I am with the deck at this moment. Thanks for reading and I look forward to your feedback!

    Posted in: Competitive Commander (cEDH)
  • posted a message on Kaalia, Zenith Seeker - "Certified Air Raid Material" V2.0
    Thanks for chiming in guys! Great to see you 3drinks. Your list definitely was instrumental in tuning my own. I am excited to collaborate on a Kaalia, Zenith Seeker deck, as I intend on building it. I fully admit that I'm probably just scratching the surface on what this deck looks like, which is why I wanted to workshop it here on the forums first. That decklist was rushed because it was midnight and I wanted to sleep. But I'd rather not purchase cards I will end up putting in my binder, although trades are always welcome Smile

    I have to say I've been out of the loop for a while as far as new ADD that might be worth looking at including low cmc ones. Help appreciated there.

    I do think that Kaalia 2.0 will utilize reanimation as a main strategy for cheating creatures into play or keeping them there. And I also think the Worldgorger Dragon combo is strong and is worth building around because it synergizes with our commander and other ETB effects that will be in the deck.

    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Kaalia, Zenith Seeker - "Certified Air Raid Material" V2.0
    Certified Air Raid Material V2.0
    ***under construction***

    This will be a reiteration of my Kaalia of the Vast deck here: https://www.mtgsalvation.com/forums/the-game/commander-edh/multiplayer-commander-decklists/217009-kaalia-of-the-vast-certified-air-raid-material I never actually owned this deck, but I helped my friend build it and played with and against it often. But I am planning on actually building V2.0 for reasons I will explain. I figure if some of you found the same issues I did with Kaalia of the Vast you might also be interested in building or discussing this alternative list.

    At first glace, Kaalia, Zenith Seeker seems to be strictly worse than her original printing because she can't cheat our fatties onto the battlefield turn after turn, and I wouldn't fault you for thinking that. The original is a true Timmy, Power Gamer kind of card. The ability is massively powerful. However, after playing the deck for a while and seeing how other Kaalia of the Vast list performed I decided there were some things that I didn't like and those things ultimately kept me from owning my own deck.

    1. After Kaalia became well known, I noticed I was being targeted even if I had nothing on the battlefield. They just didn't want to get smacked in the face with whatever I was holding in my hand. She draws a lot of hate. I found myself losing games before I really had a chance to play. 3v1 are generally losing odds. Even if you do pull off a quick win you will be hated out even more next match.

    2. It can be a glass cannon, because it is very dependent on Kaalia. Usually the deck either won magnificently or failed miserably. I spent a lot of my resources making sure she was protected and had haste.

    2. I discovered that it was less than ideal to build a creature based deck outside of green. Green has some great creature support cards, namely some OP tutors (Natural Order for example or some insane card draw like Greater Good). I found myself running out of fatties to cheat, or just not being able to draw into the answers I needed.

    3. I found that two of the sub-strategies that I liked in the deck, reanimation and blinking (think Cloudshift) had no real synergy with the commander herself, therefor sometimes those were dead cards.

    Now, Zenith Seeker actually addresses each one of the problems I had with the original deck in pretty elegant ways. It's as if Wizards actually played with the card they made and made some revisions.

    1. Because you aren't necessarily cheating anything crazy into play on turn 3 *cough cough* Master of Cruelties, I believe Zenith Seeker will draw much less hate just for being in your command zone, thereby the number of games lost before they are even played is reduced.

    2. Because your commander can't be game winning on her own, the rest of the deck is forced to be independent of her. This ultimately creates a lot more resiliency - it encourages more of a combo/control approach which is my preferred playstyle anyway.

    3. Her ability allows you to dig into your library for fuel fairly reliably. We can use blink effects to make the most value of it.

    4. As stated above, Zenith Seeker benefits directly from blink effects so we can comfortably maindeck things like Conjurer's Closet and Ephemerate, synergizing with other ETB creatures in the deck. And I think the nature of the demands a reanimation subtheme, mostly because Kaalia of the Vast isn't in our command zone.

    What changes about the deck?

    1. Because Kaalia 2.0 can't cheat our fatties into play, that means our mana curve has to come down a bit. I'm thinking generally 6 cmc or less is the ideal cost for most of our ADDs (Angels, Demons, Dragons). We are still going to utilize Sneak Attack and Quicksilver Amulet or even Kaalia 1.0 herself in the 99. This also means we will need more ramp, especially colored ramp.

    2. Preference will be given to ADDs with powerful ETB effects that we can abuse such as Rune-Scarred Demon and Thundermaw Hellkite

    3. Worldgorger Dragon/Animate Dead will be a center piece combo. It will enable our ETB effects to go infinite, killing everyone with Bogardan Hellkite or something equally sinister.

    4. Our glass cannon game-plan is out the window, that means no Master of Cruelties or Rakdos the Defiler. Personally I was never a fan of these strategies anyway.

    5. Playing a more midrange Kaalia means slotting in more answers and potentially some heavy stax components. I will keep Armageddon and Winter Orb but think about others.

    6. Our commander's ability means that we will be slotting in a much higher concentration of ADD and an equal mix of all three. It also means these need to be as low cost and as high value as possible. Think Doom Whisperer or Archangel of Tithes. The ADDs effects need to be synergistic with the deck, providing resiliency and value. In other words high CMC beaters aren't going to go as far here, and if an effect can be had on an ADD body we will choose that card over another.

    Preliminary Decklist (in progress) Feedback requested:

    DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    1 Kaalia, Zenith Seeker

    1 Sneak Attack

    1 Dragon Tempest

    1 Ephemerate
    1 Cloudshift
    1 Eerie Interlude
    1 Panharmonicon

    1 Angel of Sanctions
    1 Linvala, Keeper of Silence
    1 Archangel Avacyn
    1 Karmic Guide
    1 Archangel of Thune
    1 Angel of Finality
    1 Archangel of Tithes
    1 Emancipation Angel
    1 Restoration Angel

    1 Rune-Scarred Demon
    1 Rakdos, Lord of Riots
    1 Doom Whisperer
    1 Archfiend of Ifnir
    1 Sire of Insanity
    1 Archfiend of Depravity
    1 Mindwrack Demon
    1 Shadowborn Demon
    1 Malfegor

    1 Thundermaw Hellkite
    1 Scourge of Nel Toth
    1 Hoarding Dragon
    1 Demanding Dragon
    1 Mirrorwing Dragon
    1 Worldgorger Dragon
    1 Avaricious Dragon
    1 Rapacious Dragon

    1 Sol Ring
    1 Heartless Summoning
    1 Chromatic Lantern
    1 Coalition Relic
    1 Mox Amber
    1 Talisman of Conviction
    1 Talisman of Hierarchy
    1 Talisman of Indulgence
    1 Fellwar Stone
    1 Smothering Tithe

    5 Swamp
    5 Mountain
    5 Plains

    1 Arid Mesa
    1 Marsh Flats
    1 Bloodstained Mire

    Any Color:
    1 City of Brass
    1 Reflecting Pool
    1 Command Tower
    1 Mana Confluence
    1 Cavern of Souls

    1 Blood Crypt
    1 Sacred Foundry
    1 Godless Shrine

    1 Fetid Heath
    1 Rugged Prairie
    1 Graven Cairns

    1 Homeward Path
    1 Hall of the Bandit Lord
    1 Phyrexian Tower
    1 Bojuka Bog
    1 Piranha Marsh
    1 Strip Mine

    1 Entomb
    1 Demonic Tutor
    1 Idyllic Tutor
    1 Enlightened Tutor
    1 Buried Alive
    1 Diabolic Intent

    1 Path to Exile
    1 Toxic Deluge
    1 Aurelia's Fury
    1 Anguished Unmaking
    1 Vindicate
    1 Merciless Eviction
    1 Bedevil

    1 Reanimate
    1 Animate Dead
    1 Unburial Rites
    1 Living Death
    1 Victimize

    1 Land Tax
    1 Faithless Looting


    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on [[Primer]] Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind: Firemind's Fury
    I just wanted to report that I finally played a few real commander games today (4v4) and I got trounced! Not necessarily because my deck was under performing but because I'm just so rusty. I hadn't played a game like that in over a year. I made a few bad decisions such as not countering a Spiteful Visions which ended up killing me and then in another game I prematurely cast my Dream Halls with another blue player on the table. Ironically, the other blue player ended up landing and protecting a Consecrated Sphinx which ultimately cost me that game.

    There are a lot of new cards and two of the guys I was playing with go to tournaments regularly in different formats, modern and legacy I think. I would say our decks were on a similar power level. One of the other guys was fairly new to commander or mtg in general and didn't win any of the games either despite running pretty good cards and making a few good plays.

    I guess it made me realize that I am back to being an intermediate player when it comes to commander or mtg in general, largely due to the lack of experience I have with some of the newer cards and the time I've spent away from the game. I am not making the best plays. I've also slotted a bunch of new cards into the deck that I'm not accustomed to playing with yet either.

    As for the deck itself, I'm still leaning heavily toward my old Inner Fire/Comet Storm win con, and on the fence with Paradox Engine/Scepter. I'm feeling like cutting the scepter combo for more removal/control or tutors, or ramp to get me to that traditional non-permanent based win con more reliably. If I go this route do I add Enter the Infinite and Curiosity back in?

    I am also considering cutting Dream Halls for Omniscience. While the card is pretty fun and actually allows a nice shortcut to cast my commander, it can definitely backfire. With 3 or more other players at the table, it's hard to respond to everything that's coming at me. And like I re-discovered today, it's not good against other blue opponents especially.

    I am planning on posting my paper list, card for card and discussing how my money might be best spent on upgrading it from this point on. I'm interested in writing a Primer for Parun, but I definitely don't have the experience I need to do something like that yet. The meta has changed a lot. Right now I am planning on playing as many games as possible to gain that experience. There is a new game store opening up on our small town which should mean that I should be able to find a more consistent playgroup. He mentioned wanting to do commander tournaments, which I am all for!

    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Niv-Mizzet, Parun
    Thanks for your reply. I think our play-styles are just too different for me to really recommend anything else. If the deck works for you, that's what counts. Cheers!
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Niv-Mizzet, Parun
    Hi there fellow Niv pilot! I am the author of the now retired Firemind Primer here: https://www.mtgsalvation.com/forums/the-game/commander-edh/multiplayer-commander-decklists/217112-niv-mizzet-the-firemind-fireminds-fury Even though I can already tell that our play-styles differ, you might be able to find some good insight in that primer. My deck has definitely changed since then and I have switched to Parun as my commander.

    I have to admit that I'm a little bit confused as to what your play-style actually is though. At first glance, due to the lack of ramp or infinite combos, I would have concluded that you were a casual player but then I notice that you are running some high power cards such as Cyclonic Rift and Consecrated Sphinx as well as a fairly large number of counterspells. I would like to hear more about what kinds of cards you like to play with and what your intention for the deck is so that I might better advise. If I were to hazard a guess I would say you were primarily concerned with having fun and secondarily concerned with winning. No shortcuts, no infinite combos, no broken cards. Am I right?

    The thing about fun though is that it is highly subjective and also relative to your playgroup, which is why I am asking for a little more info. What's fun to me might not be fun to you. My deck evolved out of playing with a lot of other more competitive lists. I got tired of losing because it wasn't fun to me to lose on turn 3 or 4. I decided I would stop those wins and get my own win-cons into place. I took a spin for a time with cards like Curiosity and Enter the Infinite but then realized that wasn't really the direction I wanted to go either. Now my Niv list is more of a long-term control, card advantage engine, with combos to seal the game.

    That said, I think I may have a couple suggestions you might find of interest:

    Firstly, I want to talk about your choice of commander. Have you thought about running The Locust God instead? I see him as a very viable option simply because your list isn't a combo list. It feels a bit more aggressive. One awesome benefit about the God is that he generates chump blockers. There are some pretty amazing synergies with the Locust God already in your list. He can also very quickly overwhelm your opponents with tokens and they can be Skullclamped which is a very powerful draw engine. I don't actually see Parun as being the best spellslinger commander out there. I see him as being control/combo and utilizing more of a hand-fattening approach. This is arguably a more consistent strategy for commander than spellslinger unless you really have the support, simply because you have 4 opponents each starting at 40 life. That is 160 life that you have to ping away. I see the control in your list but not the combo. I also only see Parun as a win-con. Kess, Dissident Mage and Melek, Izzet Paragon are excellent spellslinger commanders. Not to say Parun can't get the job done nicely, but there are definitely some other paths you might consider.

    Next, I do feel I should address the issue of not using ramp. The kind of games that I play, I would never be able to cast Niv without it, because games can be won by turn 6 fairly reliably. Waiting six turns and hoping that I get just the right mix of colors on turn 6 just seems really painful to me. You don't have to run anything crazy like moxen, or Mana Crypt but a few mana rocks would really go a long way for you I think. I find cheap colored rocks to be the best Izzet Signet, Chromatic Lantern, Coldsteel Heart, Fire Diamond, Sky Diamond, Commander's Sphere, Coalition Relic, are some that come to mind. Gilded Lotus allows you to easily cast Niv on turn 6 with mana open for protection.

    One question I would ask yourself is if a given card is strong enough without your commander in play. I find many of the cheap draw spells like Opt to be weak in multiplayer. If your goal is to draw a lot of cards and deal damage with Parun, this is not the most effective way IMO. An exception maybe to this is if you are reliably able to copy these kinds of spells.

    Of great concern to me is that it appears that you are entirely dependent on your commander to win. What do you do if he costs too much commander tax and you are locked out of playing him? What do you do when he repeatedly gets board wiped, or otherwise removed from play? In my mind it makes sense to have a win condition that is independent of your commander, but still on theme of course. There are several good options here. Many use Laboratory Maniac. I personally prefer a non permanent based and synergistic (can be tutored for or recurred) win-con which is Inner Fire + Comet Storm. Spiraling Embers can also be used but I like the mana generation from Inner Fire because sometimes it can be difficult to get enough damage out of embers to win. It is also obscure and flavorful and red, which I like.

    I would suggest trying either Trade Routes or Tectonic Reformation or even Seismic Assault. Because you have a higher land count at 38 (I'm actually only running 35 because I have ramp) I can foresee you having some issues of being land flooded from time to time. These two cards turn late game lands into useful spells or damage. I really like the effect. I am personally using Scroll Rack however, but that is a higher tier more competitive upgrade in my mind. It allows a broken counter-lock combo with Counterbalance. It basically allows your whole hand to be cycled for 1. It is also tutor-able with Fabricate, Tribute Mage, and similar artifact tutors.

    You've mentioned that you see the value of the cost reducing effect of Sapphire Medallion. There are many such effects, and it is a common tool for Izzet. It is a viable alternative or complement to artifact ramp in the deck, and I would suggest running a few more. The best in my mind are Baral, Chief of Compliance, Goblin Electromancer and Jace's Sanctum. Helm of Awakening or The Immortal Sun can also be used. There are others but these are the ones I would choose.

    A new card that I am really liking a lot is Reality Scramble. I am specifically using it to cheat Omniscience into play but it can also find Consecrated Sphinx. Izzet doesn't really have any good creature tutors outside of Gamble, Long-Term Plans, and Ethereal Usher. The fact that it has retrace is really what makes a winner in my mind. If you can get it into play and protect it, Sphinx is game winning. It's broken with Wheel of Fortune, Windfall and friends. I have prioritized getting it into play above doing other things for this reason.

    A good redundancy piece for Consecrated Sphinx is either Thought Reflection or Alhammarret's Archive. I find the draw doubling effect to be really powerful, especially in combination with cards like Winds of Change or your other wheel (hand-cycling) effects. Thought Reflection is a good card to dig for with Reality Scramble.

    Graveyard recursion is a very powerful strategy for a deck like this. I would recommend swapping out some of your lower powered spells for at least 4 or 5 of these. Snapcaster Mage, Shreds of Sanity, Mystic Retrieval, Mission Briefing, Finale of Promise, Call to Mind, Mizzix's Mastery, and Recoup are some of the best. The reason these cards are so powerful is that they increase your flexibility. They generate card advantage, allow you to cast your best spells multiple times, and generally permit your graveyard to be a pseudo extension of your hand. It is incredibly synergistic with the discard type of hand-cycling effects. Discovering this strategy was a definitive "eureka" moment for me.

    Leyline of Anticipation or Vedalken Orrey can take the deck up a notch. Casting your wheel effects on someone else's turn can be a powerful play. It is also a definite benefit to cast these wheels just before your next turn so that you are the first one to be able to play them (assuming everyone else is tapped out). Because you are going for a more controllish route with your counterspells, that means that you are leaving mana open to cast them. Being able to cast other spells with that open mana is efficient. Many spells were printed at sorcery speed for a reason.

    All is Dust is an amazing catch all removal spell for this deck. I really really wouldn't play without it.

    Propaganda can be a big help. Repeatedly board wiping can make your opponents target you. This card can singlehandedly force your opponents to kill each other.

    Ivory Tower can be a nice little source of innocent life gain. A less innocent source is Aetherflux Reservoir which can also be a win-con.

    Welp, those are my suggestions. I see a lot of cards in your list that I would cut, but I will leave that to you based on your preference and experience, unless you ask me for my recommendations.

    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on [[Primer]] Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind: Firemind's Fury
    Nice to see you all are still here!

    Modern Horizons appears to be a potential goldmine for the Commander format and is drawing me back to the game.

    @benjameenbear That new list looks pretty strong! Thousand-Year Storm actually hurts my brain. I see that it essentially gives every spell you cast storm. The only thing I really don't like about it is the cmc. It's not a great early game card and I'm not convinced it hits hard enough late game.

    I'm finding that Niv 3.0's color heavy cost can be a bit of an obstacle. Chromatic Lantern certainly helps but isn't guaranteed. It's too bad all the Mox right now keep getting more and more expensive - out of my price range. Talisman of Creativity is definitely going into my deck for this reason, and I'd like to find a couple more like it. 3 cmc or less colored artifact ramp that doesn't come into play tapped.

    When I'm at the table with other combo players; they can usually get to their combo faster, empty their hand faster, then they either win or their out of the game for a couple turns. Cards like Wheel of Fortune helped the other people at the table much more than it helped me. Instead of wheels, I'm going to running more hand fattening cards.

    The trick with wheels is to cast them when they benefit you the most. There are many examples of this, but say you cast an overloaded Cyclonic Rift, then followed with a Wheel. RIP. Most notably they combo VERY well with Consecrated Sphinx allowing you to get half your deck in your hand. That said, I have removed some of the less than ideal or higher cmc wheels from my list in favor of more control or hand fattening cards.

    Stranglehold is definitely something that should be considered, although I have found that cards like these really paint a target on your head. I tend to go more toward cards like Propaganda that don't directly shut down my opponents but that still do a decent job of protecting me.

    I have become a huge fan of modular counterspells. Examples of these are Supreme Will, Insidious Will, and now Archmage's Charm. It addresses the main downside to having a large number of counterspells in your list.

    I like Reality Scramble a lot. That's definitely a card that I can build around! And I love having good red cards in the deck.

    With so many artifacts in the deck, Sculpting Steel or Phyrexian Metamorph are looking pretty good again, especially for copying our mana rocks.

    With Paradox Engine, I should point out that Reiterate can be an alternate win con if you don't have Isochron Scepter. All you need is mana rocks that can produce 4RR Reiterate is definitely a card that I will be slotting back in.

    Well those are just my random thoughts for now. Interested in further honing my own list here. Hopefully I can find some games here locally.

    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on [[Competitive]] Aurelia: Warclamp
    Definitely not. There are a few newer cards I would probably swap in, i just haven't really gotten a chance to think about it. And like I said, adding a third color into the mix would certainly up the power level considerably.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on [[Primer]] Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind: Firemind's Fury
    Man, I really don't have much time these days. A lot of good stuff being said, and thanks for joining in the conversation Sky God. I like where you are going with this.

    Turn 3 cast Chrome Mox, Transmute Artifact on Grim Monolith using its mana and UU to get Alhammarret's Archive, cast Personal Tutor to get Reforge the Soul then when someone did not pay the tax on Rhystic Study, I drew Reforge the Soul on someone else's turn and cast it using its miracle cost.

    Unless I missing something, if you didn't have a flash enabler out, this doesn't work since Reforge is a sorcery.

    I decided to Pact of Negation it then kill him with Niv-Mizzet, Parun triggers so Pact of Negation would fizzle and I wouldn't have to pay the upkeep cost, I picked up Force of Will from the draw. Next opponent cast a creature that threatened to kill me and I had to Force of Will it, a few triggers from that killed off his creatures (ten more cards in deck).

    I'm wondering why you didn't just draw your library. You should have enough answers to deal with literally anything, not to mention kill at least 2 players (I don't know what the life totals were but I'm assuming they were close to 40 since it was only turn 4.)

    I'm personally a firm advocate of running Cursed Totem if your deck can support it. The number of combos it shuts off, in addition to the number of mana dorks, makes it one of the strongest Stax pieces in my Teferi list. It is a SERIOUS pain to deal with as an opponent against the card (I have a Zacama, Primal Calamity deck that HATES this card), and I find I have to spend quite a few resources trying to find some way to get it off the table. The other Stax pieces are a little more niche, depending on your meta, but are otherwise generally effective. It does, however, take up a precious card slot which is always the hardest thing to accommodate in this format...

    I do think that Stax is a valid direction to take this deck, especially when it comes to specific threats that we can have difficulty dealing with. Since we have no real creatures to speak of, we are pretty vulnerable to them. I do think that something like Propaganda would not be too out of place here. Artifacts are definitely our preference however. If you can think of some good artifact stax pieces, please list them. I feel these should probably be things that protect us, rather than shutting down the whole table, as that very clearly paints a target on our head.

    I think I'm going to give the Spiraling Embers thing a try. Nobody has said anything about that yet, but I'm hopeful. I've personally never liked win-cons that depend on permanents for this list. I find them to be too fragile. My instincts tell me that Spiraling Embers will work well with the recursion package that we already have. I like embers because it's the last thing people expect from a deck like this. I think it works better than the Inner Fire / Comet Storm kill, and it frees up one slot. I still totally plan on including the Paradox Engine / Scepter package as well, as I feel that to be pretty strong.

    I have to give credit to FireStorm4056 for this one but As Foretold is really amazing for this deck. I will definitely be slotting this in to give it a try. At the very least, it makes all of our counters Force of Wills once per turn. Yes, you heard that correctly. I would also like to point out that this card combos amazingly well with Vedalken Orrery and Leyline of Anticipation allowing you to cast ANY one spell on EACH of our opponent's turns for 0. I see a lot of value here and more of a reason to include at least one flash enabler. My vote would be Orrey since we can tutor for it and recur it. Yes, this becomes a huge target when people realize what it does for us, but it also doesn't hurt that bad to lose it. Overall, I would probably slot this in over Omniscience because it is more usable early game. The one thing I DON'T like about this card, is that it is a horrible late game top deck. It's also not easy to tutor for, and we probably wouldn't tutor for it anyway over other things with our precious tutors that CAN grab it.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on [PRIMER] Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind - FireStorm4056's Flashes of the Firemind
    @Firestorm, long time no see. I'm wondering if you have any thoughts on Niv-Mizzet, Parun, as well as a few other cards recently spoiled. Your last post was over a year ago now. Niv 3.0 was enough to bring me back to the game and these forums after a similar absence, so I'm crossing my fingers that you will pop back in too! My long term goal is to write up a Primer for Niv 3.0 as he will undoubtedly be replacing Firemind in my list. In my mind at least, he brings the deck back to a Tier 1 competitiveness level, where Firemind was beginning to fall behind.

    As Foretold is really amazing. Thanks for pointing that card out. I will definitely be using that. At the very least, it makes all of our counters Force of Wills! I would like to point out that this card combos amazingly well with Vedalken Orrery and Leyline of Anticipation allowing you to cast a spell on EACH of our opponent's turns. I see a lot of value there and more of a reason to include at least one flash enabler. My vote would be Orrey since we can tutor for it and recur it.

    Experimental Frenzy is pretty interesting. My immediate feeling on it is that not being able to play cards from our hands is too severe of a handicap. IMO, it's not a good fit for this list. This card would work a lot better in a mono-red build or a deck that utilizes the graveyard more extensively. Being a moderately heavy control deck, we need access to our hands.

    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Queen Marchesa's Ritual of Blood, Bodies and Spellslinging
    This is a really awesome list and idea. I'm not sure I've seen anything quite like it. I've wanted to build a Mardu deck for a while and seeing your list is a strong push in that direction. I have a Boros list that could certainly be adapted to something like this. But Green is also a strong option for a 3rd color. It could go either way for me.

    I know you didn't really ask for feedback but I have a few thoughts. My Boros token deck is here if you are interested. It's aggro list with a strong equipment subtheme. Although the strategies certainly diverge, I feel like you could cherry pick a couple of cards from that list perhaps since it's a similar idea...

    Why no Skullclamp? Definitely on theme and will draw you a ton of cards. One of the strongest cards in my list. I can foresee a deck like this really eating through cards, so having solid draw is necessary.

    Shivan Harvest can be devastating in a deck like this.

    With a solid token producing package, Purphoros is a pretty reliable win-con, alongside Blood Funnel, and ESPECIALLY if you are chaining token making spells such as Conqueror's Pledge. You will also get plenty of sac fodder, blockers, or anything you need them to be. Something like Krenko, Mob Boss might be worthwhile. But the ideal I think for this list are non-creature token producers, especially enchantments, but sorceries and instants can also work well.

    Assemble the Legion might be ok, if you can get it out early enough, but it's always cost a bit too much for me, easier to do with black or green added maybe? Call the Bloodline might work. There are really a ton of options on these lines thankfully, we can pick and choose what seems to work the best.

    Emeria Angel can be good if you are using enough fetchlands or are playing green Slant

    Chancellor of the Forge is nice with Sneak Attack.

    Anyway, just some friendly suggestions/thoughts/ideas. Smile
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on [[Competitive]] Aurelia: Warclamp
    Hi there, I'm necro-ing my own thread. I actually had to google it to find it, lol. I also had to create a new account here for some reason, but it's me, Rowan.

    This is still a deck that I like to play frequently. Seems like there have been a ton of decent new cards in boros colors recently that would fit right into this deck. I'm wondering if anyone would care to suggest some that they have played with or are eyeing in the new set? These would be good creature token generators, equipment or equipment synergy cards, decent removal, card draw, tutors, stax, or ways to cheat things into play.

    I was absolutely elated to see that Imperial Recruiter and Land Tax both got a reprint. I can certainly be grateful for that.

    At this point I think it's worth mentioning that I'm well aware that there are better commanders for a deck like this, most notably Samut, Voice of Dissent. Adding green to the mix would patch any weaknesses the deck currently faces, especially mana acceleration, land control, and card draw. And very arguably, Samut does a better job at what Aurelia is trying to do for 1 less. Samut generally enables and synergizes with the rest of the deck much better. A Fervor in our command zone is just fantastic on its own.

    Najeela, the Blade-Blossom also caught my eye as a possible commander, but 5 color decks are EXPENSIVE!

    As much power as swapping commanders might give us, I don't particularly feel like tearing the deck apart at this time. I don't have the money to create something better for one thing (dual lands alone would add up pretty fast), and I actually enjoy the challenge of creating a boros equipment/token deck that works and is fun to play. I very much wish that we received an upgraded Aurelia in this new set that would have served my purposes here, but alas.... I will be content with Niv-Mizzet 3.0!

    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
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