Game #214: Gonti, Lord of Luxury

Game #214: Gonti, Lord of Luxury
Date: 2016-12-13
Location: Red Castle Games, Portland OR
Vs. Atraxa +; Borborygmos (85); Tymna/Ludavic
Result:   Fun Win

Gonti, Lord of Luxury, Magic, Prerelease CardsvsAtraxa, Praetors' Voice, Magic, Commander 2016Borborygmos Enraged, Magic, Gatecrash(Tymna the Weaver, Magic, Commander 2016/Ludevic, Necro-Alchemist, Magic, Commander 2016)

I started with a 3 land hand and played a Bog Wreckage, and a Cloudstone Curio on turn three, and Gonti (getting a Rhystic Study from Atraxa).  Atraxa played a Vulturous Zombie, and Borborygmos was digging with a Geier-reach Sanitarium, Tymna was doing stuff with lands.  On turn 5 I played a Conjurer’s Closet blinking Gonti for an Astral Cornucopia, and on Turn 6 I played a Dreamstone Hedron and blinked Gonti again. Then everything died to Crackling Doom.

I played Gonti again on turn 7 and kept finding ways to blink or bounce it (getting things like Necromantic Summons, Crystal Crawler, Temple Bell, etc).  Borborygmos killed Gonti once, but it was returned with the Summons. I tried for a Panharmonicon, but it was countered.  Atraxa exiled my conjuror’s closet. On turn 10 I was able to get it back to my hand and cast it on turn 11.  Borborygmos sends a huge attack at Tymna, but Ludavic/Tymna steals a giant Vinecrasher and flings it in response to a Beast Within.  Atraxa gets killed. I exile Borborygmos with a stolen Path to Exile, and then  I cast a Marionette Master as a 4/6.  I use another Aetherborn to sacrifice 8 creatures to deal 32 damage to kill Luda/Tymna, and then using bouncing to make more servos and do it again to kill Borborygmos.

I got to trigger Gonti lots of times, I got to cast a lot of stolen spells, and I used tricks to win. It was a pretty fun game.  I realized midway into the game that I didn’t slot in the Cabal Coffers and Urborg that I had planned on putting in the deck.  Borborygmos had upped his land count in the deck to 85.

About the Deck http://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/gonti-luxurious/

Aside from being “Aetherborn” tribal, the goal of this deck is mostly to cast, blink, bounce, and copy Gonti as often as possible to build a “hand” of stolen cards. I play a few lands and abilities that let me have colored mana in case I need to pay costs of activated abilities of stolen cards.  There’s also a small energy sub theme, just because Energy is fun.  Panharmonicon and Minion Reflector get pretty silly, and I also plan on putting a Blade of Selves in for even more fun.

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Game #200: Purraj of Urborg

Game #200: Purraj of Urborg
Date: 2016-08-02
Location: Red Castle Games, Portland OR
Vs. Alesha, Who Smiles at Death; Rith the Awakener; Teysa Envoy of Ghosts
Result: Fun Loss

Purraj of Urborg, Magic, MiragevsAlesha, Who Smiles at Death, Magic, Fate ReforgedRith, the Awakener, Magic, InvasionTeysa, Envoy of Ghosts, Magic, Dragon's Maze

I was not planning on Playing Game 200 tonight, but playing 199 with a Pauper deck made it happen. So there’s no super ultra special deck for this milestone (I was maybe going to play a Dragonlance-themed Scion of the Urdragon, but it never got finished).  After the last game I switched tables where another player was making some edits to his Alesha deck.  Another guy and his young son (playing EDH for the third time) asked if we wanted to join them.  This sounded like a good scenario for game 200.  2 players that have played since ’94, and one brand new (plus a 4th player).  The deck I had on tap for tonight’s game was Purraj of Urborg  (aka Black Cat,  with vampire Mirri as a swapable commander).   White cats and a new young player gave me bad luck in game 198. Would  black cats give me good luck against a new young player in 200…?

I kept a 2 land hand (being risky). But was able to draw into a land for turn 3, where I cast an Agent of Fates.  Teysa mulliganed down to 5 or 6 cards and was really land hosed for much of the early and mid game (Mulliganing-down in casual formats is silly, but that’s how he wanted to do it).  Alesha played a Keening Apparition, and Teysa was able to Oblivion Ring my Agent of Fate.  I played Fate Unraveler on turn 4, but it got Apparitioned.  Since I was playing some Enchantment tricks, the recurrable apparition was going to be a problem.

On turn 5 I played a Curse of Wizardry (naming White), which Did Work all game long, and was super great for me.  Turn 6 I got a Cabal Coffers (which was the only land I saw until turn 10!) and was able to cast Purraj.  Alesha had a Clone Shell and Nahiri’s Machinations, as well as a Mirror Entity.  Rith was on the table, and still building up lands, and Teysa was still trying to get lands.

On turn 7 I played Curse of Oblivion on Alesha (hoping to get that Apparition out of the yard) who had 4 cards in his graveyard (it didn’t). Turn 8 I played Curse of the Shallow Graves on Alesha and threw a damage-transfer enchantment onto Rith.  Alesha was able to get back the apparition and killed off the Curse of Oblivion.  Rith made 7 saprolings.  On turn 9 I cast a Black Cat (giving a counter to Purraj) and suspended a Curse of the Cabal.  Teysa played the all-or-no dragons board wipe, leaving Rith, but wiping the board .  Alesha started playing Clone Shell tricks. On turn 10 I played a Swamp (my 5th!) and had enough to re-cast Purraj.   Rith cast a Secure the Wastes for 5 and then used Descent of the Dragons to make them big.

On turn 11 I cast a the suspended Curse of the Cabal (that no one sacrificed anything to…) and targeted Rith, getting 5 dragon tokens and a Mobilization.  Alesha got rid of some curses with the apparition. Rith cast a Martial coup for 5, and Teysa cast a Patron of the Kitsune.  I cast Enslave on the Patron of the Kitsune, and Rith cast Sylvan Offering (I got 5 elves).  I was able to throw another Curse on Alesha, but then a very low-life Teysa cast a huge Debt to the Deathless, putting me down low, and kiling Alesha.

Rith cast a Gahiji and made a big attack at me. Through life-gain from the Patron (and a surprise Bubbling Cauldron), I was able to block and survive at 1 life. Rith cast a Nomad’s Assembly.  Teysa, didn’t want to leave me alive, and killed me with a Orzhova, Church of Deals (which was the very first land he played in the game).

In the end, Rith (played by the new player) killed Teysa (played by his dad).  It was a pretty epic game, and worthy of being game 200.  I will also say that the Dad was really good about helping his son learn the game and giving pointers while NOT being unfair or unbalanced about it. It’s fun to play when everyone is enjoying it.

About the Deck ( TappedOut http://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/better-watch-your-step/)

Purraj was one of my favorite cards from way back in Mirage days. I’ve never seen her used as a general (or even played) in Commander.  The deck is based on general “bad luck” stuff:  Curses, Witches, Fate etc.  Since it plays all of the black Curses (plus cards named Curse that aren’t of the subtype) it also has a bit of an enchantment sub-theme and makes use of re-castable enchantments as a way to put counters on Purraj as well.  It has the Bubbling Cauldron/Festering Newt/Bog Witch in it, plus the extra flavorful new witch that transforms into a curse.  Mirri (the vampire version) is in the deck but can easily be swapped in as a commander, since she and Purraj both can have +1/+1 counters, there’s a Mer-Ek Nightblade and a faerie that buffs things with counters as well.   I like the deck thematically, though it ‘s not a mighty powered one.

GAME 200!!!!!!  What does it mean?!?!   I have no intention of stopping building decks, and I’m going to continue to update the blog as I play new ones (I can see no fewer than 12 partially complete decks on my table right now). I anticipate the rate picking back up again once my new job starts and I can buy cards more frequently. (I also anticipate it slowing down early next year when my family grows by 50%).

I’m also trying to add as many decks to my TappedOut account (http://tappedout.net/users/Nickel97/   or http://tappedout.net/users/Nickel97/deck-folders/ to view all the decks), mostly because then I can add them to Forge for playtesting against AI.   I won’t make my goal of having all decks added by the time school (work) starts in 2 weeks, but it takes me 9-12 minutes to add a new deck.  Maybe I can hit 100 decks.

Be on the lookout for a Stats report covering the first 200 games, and maybe some charts and graphs.

If you’ve made it here via some sort of social media link, thanks for reading! I love Commander, and I love building decks. Even though almost no one reads my blog (except when I get a social media bump), I’m happy I have a record of this.  If anyone wants me to be on their podcast, or blog (or anything else), I’d be happy to do it. (also, I can write much better if I put time into it.)

Game #199: Nezumi Graverobber (pauper)

Game $1.99: Nezumi Graverobber (pauper)
Date: 2016-08-02
Location: Red Castle Games, Portland OR
Vs. Genju of the Realm; Derevi, Empyrial Tactician
Result: Unfun Loss/Scoop

Nezumi Graverobber, Magic, Champions of KamigawavsGenju of the Realm, Magic, Betrayers of KamigawaDerevi, Empyrial Tactician, Magic, Commander 2013

I got to the store early on this day, and played a one-on-one game with the next person that showed up (Sen Triplets is dirty  with the new Dirty Mana rules, and Rhys the Exiled just couldn’t hang).  Another player showed up and wanted to play a Genju of the Realm deck. Thinking that it would probably be a “fun” deck, I decided to take a Nezumi Graverobber  Pauper commander deck for a spin, instead of playing the deck I had planned on playing.

I kept a 6 land hand (I don’t do “partial” mulligans), played my general on turn 2 and ate an empty graveyard to transform on turn 3.  In the mean time Genju went, Fetch, Fetch (the originals) Sylvan Library, Prismatic Omen, Exploration, Maelstrom Nexus.  Derevi played a Garruk Wildspeaker, Derevi herself, and a Platinum Angel.

I got excited because I had a 5-mana kill spell, and was planning on killing the Angel and reanimating it. Fun, right? So I passed the turn with 5 open mana.  Genju Demonic Tutored, to cascade into a Path to Exile on the Angel, and then played a Humility.   Not wanting to try to play through that rules headache, and knowing that I had no way to deal with it in a mono-black pauper deck, and knowing that 1/1 vanillas with no ETB effects were also basically worthless, I decided to scoop and switch tables to play with someone I’ve had enjoyable games with in the past.

About the Deck (no TappedOut… yet)

Nezumi Graverobber is a fun uncommon that becomes a Legendary Creature with a fun effect. Great choice for an EDH pauper deck.  It’s a mix of common kill and discard, plus some Zombie tribal-ish stuff (or at least a zombie theme). It has a few ways to empty a graveyard in case I need to flip the Graverobber in the later game.

 

Game #167: Nefarox, Overlord of Grixis 2.0

Game #167: Nefarox, Overlord of Grixis 2.0
Date: 2015-04-29
Location: Family Game Store, Savage, MD
vs. Grimgrin, Corpse Born; Kruphix, God of Horizons; Jarad.
Result: Mostly fun Loss

Nefarox, Overlord of Grixis, Magic, Magic 2013 (M13)vsGrimgrin, Corpse-Born, Magic, InnistradKruphix, God of Horizons, Magic, Journey Into NyxJarad, Golgari Lich Lord, Magic, Duel Decks: Izzet vs. Golgari

Grimgrin had arrived to round our our pod, and Jarad made some deck adjustments (he only has one deck, but has a huge “sideboard” to make it play differently, kind of like my Kaalia).

This game got kind of crazy. I had a 3 land hand, and cast Beseech the Queen on turn 3 to get Waste Not. Jarad played Rites of Flourishing and later Howling Mine, Kruphix had Shizuko, Caller of Autumn, and later Howling Mine AND Dictate of Karametra. Grimgrin had a Soothsaying. This allowed us to build ridiculous board-states (having a Dreamstone Hedron and a Sol Ring helped me out too). Ridiculous enough that I was basically able to rebuild my board in one turn after a Cyclonic Rift from Grimgrin.

I cast Nefarox with a Hedron Matrix, Predator’s Gambit and Vow of Malice, but GrimGrin Fleshbagged it. Booo. There was also a Heartbeat of Spring out by this point, and there was so much mana available it became really hard to keep track of what all was going on. I know I did a Necromantic Selection at one point, AND I know I played a Warped Devotion which was BRUTAL when Kruphix cast a Warped Devotion.

Some other stuff happened, but then Kruphix Blue Sun’s Zenithed himself into a Laboratory Maniac and cycled a land for the win.

About the Deck: tapped out someday
Nefarox used to be the boss of my 13 demons and acolytes deck, but his Exalted ability didn’t really fit into the deck, so he got replaced by Ob Nixilis the I-wish-he-didn’t-screw-over-tutoring-because-it-draws-much-hate-and-I-only-really-care-about-the-+1/+1-counters. I had a foil Russian Nefarox, so that required a new deck. I decided to go “creatureless” and play lots of the “loner” cards, as well as play Waste Not with some discard effects for fun. I may take out the WasteNot and transfer it to a Sidisi deck, but I’m not sure.

The Rest of the Night

As I predicted, this game took a lot longer than I wanted (because I wanted to get a third new deck in tonight), but we had time for at least a short 3 player game. I played Titania and was doing some fun stuff and making lots of dudes off of a great opening hand. We didn’t finish it, but it was really close. I was at 1 life (in part because I took 20 points of damage from Nu-Ob Nixilis in order to Ghost Quarter myself and Evolving Wilds), but I had a Crucible of Worlds and a Zuran Orb (that made a surprise last ditch surviving effort when Jarad chose to sac Ob Nixilis for damage instead of attacking). Jarad’s Rites of Flourishing was letting me play an extra land each turn, and I was pretty sure I could keep him off of green mana with Strip Mines long enough to get in for the win. But it was 9 and we called the game.

The Decks Files, part 3: Mono Black

Note: I’m going to start a series where I rate, and give a synopsis of, my decks. I’ll look at each deck, explain what it does (how/if it wants to win, what “kind” of deck it is), how much I like it, how “good” I think it is, and how often I feel like playing it and maybe an anecdote or two.

Note on Decklists: Having so many decks means that it’s REALLY time consuming to keep decklists updated. Not every deck is on TappedOut.com, and many that are have changed significantly. That said, IF YOU WANT A DECKLIST: leave a comment or send me a message and I will find time to fix, or create, the decklists on TappedOut.

Here’s the Quick Rubric I’ll use for some of the questions.

How often do I want to Play it? How “Good” is it? How much do I like it?
5=  More than once in a Row  I’d play it against “Competitive decks” or if I actually want to try to win  One of my very favorites
4=  Often  It can hold its own  I really like it
3=  Sometimes  It might win under special circumstances  It’s okay
2=  Under certain circumstances  Just for Fun  Something’s not quite right
1=  Rarely / have to be in a certain mood  Winning would be a miracle I might actually take it apart… maybe

Commander: Drana, Kalastria Bloodchief/Baron SengirDSC03341-375
Name: True Blood
Style: Tribal,
Tribe?: Vampires, All FOIL
Want to play?: 4
“Good?”: 2
Like?: 5
Deck Notes: My first mono black deck was Drana. I liked the vampire arts so much I started getting foil versions, and eventually I decided to foil it out, even to the extent of cutting cards because they could not be foiled. Baron Sengir is the exception, and my Baron is awesomely altered by a friend of mine (the pilot of Balthor / Gisa). One of my favorite all-time games happened with this deck.

Commander: Mikaeus the UnhallowedMikeShade
Name: The Shade
Style: Combo / Value
Tribe?:
Want to play?: 2
“Good?”: 3
Like?: 2-3
Deck Notes: Mikaeus is good, and so is recurring things. I do play Triskelion in the deck, but if people ask nicely, I’ll certainly replace it with a ridiculously terrible card instead.  The main reason I keep this deck around is because of the fantastic alter that my friend did to make it look like the Shade from DC Comics (“Starman” in particular).

Commander: Ashling, the ExtinguisherAshling, the Extinguisher, Magic, Eventide
Name: The Purple Deck
Style: Ultra Mono
Tribe?: purple things
Want to play?: 3
“Good?”: 3
Like?: 3
Deck Notes: This was the second “Ultra Mono” (no cards not of the color identity aside from lands) deck I built, mostly as a way to trim down the stack.  I really like the way purple looks on black cards, especially in foil, so there are quite a few cards in here just because the art has purple in it.  Other than that it has a Chroma/Devotion (I prefer Chroma) feel and some “sacrifice” themes as well.

Commander: Lim Dul, Necromancer / Chainer Dementia MasterLim-Dul the Necromancer, Magic, Time Spiral
Name: Rise!
Style: Creatureless Reanimator
Tribe?: whatever you’ve got
Want to play?: 4
“Good?”: 3
Like?: 4
Deck Notes: This was one of my first “creatureless” decks.  The goal is to kill your things and raise them again as my zombies.  Adding Chainer as an Alternate commander was a recent innovation. It changes the way the deck plays slightly. This one also generates mana very well, and uses things like Exsanguinate as a back-up.

Commander: Marrow-gnawerMarrow-Gnawer, Magic, Champions of Kamigawa
Name: Rats
Style: Rats
Tribe?: Rats
Want to play?: 1
“Good?”: 2
Like?: 1
Deck Notes:  This is your everyday Relentless Rats deck, though it also plays other Rat Tribal.  I’m not sure why I don’t like it more

 

Commander: Nefarox, Overlord of Grixis(Ob Nixilis, Unshackled)Ob Nixilis, Unshackled, Magic, Magic 2015 (M15)
Name: The Thirteen
Style: Tribal
Tribe?: Demons, Clerics
Want to play?: 4
“Good?”: 3
Like?: 4
Deck Notes: This is the Nemesis deck to Heliod+ (though not ultra mono), there are 13 Demons in the deck, including the general, as well as 18 Shadowborn Apostles and other clerics (and a few Horrors, Avatars, or It That Betrayses).   Nefarox was the original choice because I had a Russian Foil, but Ob Nixilis, Unshackled makes an even better option because of all the sacrificing of clerics (I actually wish he didn’t have the Anti-Tutor Jerk ability at all).  Door of Destinies is pretty good in this deck.  Nefarox is getting his own new “Creatureless” deck soon.

Commander: King Macar, the Gold CursedKing Macar, the Gold-Cursed, Magic, Journey Into Nyx
Name: C.R.E.A.M.
Style: Tribal
Tribe?: Mercenaries and Minions
Want to play?: 3
“Good?”: 2
Like?: 4
Deck Notes:  King Macar has gold, Mercenaries like Gold (and are a terrible tribe, so of course), and kings need Minions.  I really like Macar’s ability, and having Gold Tokens.

Commander: Ghoulcaller GisaGhoulcaller Gisa, Magic, Commander 2014
Name: The Shovel and the Damage Done
Style: Aggro
Tribe?: (not) Zombies
Want to play?: 2
“Good?”: 3
Like?: 4
Deck Notes: A newer deck that I should play more. Not the Zombies and Robots version, but instead it’s a zombie deck that plays no zombies at all. She just shovels things into zombiedom

Commander: Iname, Death AspectIname, Death Aspect, Magic, Champions of Kamigawa
Name:
Style: Alternate win
Tribe?: Spirits
Want to play?: 2
“Good?”: 2
Like?: 3
Deck Notes:  Iname is efficient at getting creatures into the graveyard to make Crypt of Agadeem really good, or to win via Mortal Kombat Combat.  I have Spirit tribal decks in several colors and color pairs.  Witchbane Orb is there to protect me from Tormod’s crypt.

 

Game #147: Iname, Death Aspect

Game #147: Iname, Death Aspect
Date: 2015-01-21
Location: Family Game Store
Vs. Jarad, Golgari Lich Lord; Gisa; Lazav Dimir Mastermind
Result: Neutral to Almost Fun Loss

Iname, Death Aspect, Magic, Champions of KamigawavsGhoulcaller Gisa, Magic, Commander 2014Jarad, Golgari Lich Lord, Magic, Duel Decks: Izzet vs. GolgariLazav, Dimir Mastermind, Magic, Gatecrash

I kept a 2 land hand, and got to 3 lands before I stalled for awhile. I played some cheap janky spirits early on (yeah Ghost Hounds!) and also a decent Nether Traitor. Jarad played an early Rune Scarred Demon and Gisa was saccing and recurring Kokusho (at least 3 times). Jarad tried for an Avenger of Zendikar, but Lazav countered it, and then used his pet Crypt Rats to kill of more creatures. I’m still not doing great in the land department.

I get to enough lands to cast Insidious Dreams, searching up Crypt of Agadeem, Necrologia, Witchbane Orb and Mortal Combat and stack it so I draw the crypt and then Necrologia. Jarad has both Thuderfoot Baloth and Demonic Overseer and is saccing dudes to eat our life totals. I have all of the pieces I need to win the game, but not enough mana to do it right away. I had to play the Witchbane orb first (relevant because of Gisa’s Nihil Spellbomb), and was 1 short of also casting both Mortal Combat and Iname as well. However, we were all low enough thanks to Jarad that Gisa just needed to recur Kokusho once more to kill us all.

The other two guys that were there this night ended up playing Two Headed Giant Tiny Leaders (each of them playing two TL decks) for awhile and then just burning out on Tiny Leaders.

About the Deck ( http://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/01-01-15-spirit-death/ )

This is mostly a pretty standard Win By Mortal Combat OR By Big Crypt of Agadeem Mana Fueled Spell Thanks to Iname’s Ability deck. I play a lot of crappy spirits and a few non-spirits. The rest of the goal is to just load the graveyard and play off of that. Nothing special, but it was fun to play and cheap to build.

Game #143: Ghoulcaller Gisa

Game #143: Ghoulcaller Gisa
Date: 2014-12-03
Location: Family Game Store
Vs. Ghoulcaller Gisa; Sidisi, Brood Queen
Result: Very Fun Loss

Ghoulcaller Gisa, Magic, Commander 2014vsGhoulcaller Gisa, Magic, Commander 2014Sidisi, Brood Tyrant, Magic, Prerelease Cards

Preface: Balthor is no more. Balthor’s player decided it was time for a new mono-black deck, with fewer foils and with a slightly different angle (but still several non-foil but super expensive cards). Thus Gisa is born… just in time to play against my Gisa deck.

It was a Zombie Token Land crazy match. I started with a 3 land hand, but hitting land drops pretty well. Turn 4 Moan of the Unhallowed, Turn 5 Gravepact, Turn 6 Gisa, Turn 7 Filth (into zombies).  Other Gisa has a Gravecrawler, Crypt Ghast and a Metalworker (Because it’s legal now).  Sidisi has an amulet of Vigor and a Zombie Infestation AND Necromancer’s Stockpile.

Other Gisa kills my Gisa with Liliana of the Dark Realms, while Sidisi kept attacking other Gisa in order to offset the life that Sangromancer was gaining him because of Sidisi’s discards.  I’ve got out a Grim Haruspex and a Necropolis Regent and an active, but patiently waiting, Quest for the Gravelord.  Other Gisa Duplicants Sidisi.  My guys have gotten pretty big from the Regent.

Other Gisa has built up a pretty sizeable Zombie Army, Sidisi plays a Masscre Wurm (which is what I was going to do on the very next turn) that clears Gisa’s board, but sends him to 96 life.  I’ve got out a Wall of Blood, but my life total is low enough that it doesn’t do me any good.  Gisa knocks me down to 10 and then a Damnation followed by a Massacre wurm puts me to 2.  I play my own massacre wurm (Wurms for everyone!). Gisa gets crazy with Yawgmoth’s will.

I try to reanimate Sidisi’s Eternal Witness, but it’s countered.  Other Gisa gets knocked down to 6 and we both die to a horde of Sidisi’s Tokens.   All in All this was a very fun game that any of us could have won.

About the Deck: (http://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/gisa-and-her-graveyard-crew/)

While Other Gisa is more along the lines of Robots and Zombies, my Gisa deck is a Zombie deck with NO zombies in it at all. It started as possibly being Gisa and the Bad Girls (with a human tribal, and female character theme), but slowly became more of a Gisa and her Graveyard Pals deck.  The Bad Girls might become a Kiku tiny leaders deck.   I like this deck, and am looking forward to playing it more, though probably not in mirror matches, just for variety’s sake.