Dark Design

Friday, 28 January 2011

Something Something Dark Side...

It's pre release tomorrow and I know which team I'm batting for...

I thought we'd take a moment to look at the optons...

Well the good guys might always win in the movies, but I got a sneaking suspicion that Phyrexia are gonna sweep game day.

So what side should you play?

Well depends on a few things....
First money... If you were trying to make the most out of your buck then the Mirran prerelease card is worth pretty much half the entry price, whereas the Phyrexian one is worth a quarter...

Cards and their approx values...
Cards to look out for
Tez (£25?)
Blightsteel Colossus/ Thrun (£15?)

Massacre Worm / Sword of Feast and Famine, and Inkmoth Nexus ( £9.... although the land may go up yet...)

Of all the zeniths the green and black are worth the most....

Both the crussaders are worth a bit,  with the black slightly ahead...

Cards that I think will go up in value?

Phyrexian Revoker is a must have, I can’t believe it’s only £2... This card is Jack the Jace killer and it will see main deck play...Contested warzone looks terrible (and it does ) ...but there’s something about it that’s screaming at me... A good aggro deck could use this as another 4 bushwhackers...  

Uncommon? Well clearly go for the throat is the new doom blade and they are already pre-selling for £2 (that’s as much a s a revoker?) Unfortunately, I don’t suspect they will be much help tomorrow  and you may want to keep them in the sideboard..

So what do I recommend playing tomorrow? Just have fun that’s what I say... but on a competitive level, two words will dominate tomorrow and you can bet the winning players will be from one of these two camps... Infect or Battlecry... Personally I reckon Infect will be stronger (it’s like playing an opponent who has 10 life, rather than 20) So if you don’t get a big load of these in your pool or you just plain don’t want to play infect or battlecry, then I got two words for you... FIRST STRIKE... get as many first striking critters in your deck as you can...

Here’s some Gordon Vader tips for winning on game day...
      Research... If you are reading this then you already have a head-start, but maintain that lead and go to the wizards site and look at the spoilers... 
         Removal Removal Removal, don’t make it clunky and specific – the ability to destroy a flying non green non artifact creature during the declare attackers phase is pointless.. 
      Watch out for the bombs... A bomb will win you games, a 7 card combo in 3 colours won’t. 
      Never let an infect creature through if your opponent has a lot of green mana untapped. 
      Try to stick to a colour scheme you can live with... (even if it means leaving out that Mythic rare)
      Ideally you should try to play one colour, unless you have a strategy that looks consistent...

Ok some specifics...

Good cards to play... 

I’m not going to speculate on bomb cards because you’re going to get what you get... 
Commons and uncommons though... here’s my pick...

Top of my list would be...

Corrupted conscience ( I haven’t seen a lot of Enchantment hate and this would be horrible at the right moment...)

Steel sabotage could also be good..  

Virrulent wound is awesome and I think we’re going to see more of this card...
       Red got some great burn... Slagstorm, Concussive bolt and Burn the Impure
       will all save the day for someone tomorrow.

       Anway these are just some ideas... So go have fun and I hope you get all the
       Mythic rares you want...   
       What Side am i taking?
        Well Mirran Of Course... Someone’s got to keep these Phyrexians at bay and
        didn’t you know the good guy always gets the girl?           

        Here's the link to the entire Spoiler.. 


Thursday, 27 January 2011

Tick Toxic

It's been over a week since we last posted a new deck, but fear not adventurers we haven’t been slacking. We’ve got a ton of new ideas coming your way and we’re going to start with our first Mirrodin Besieged deck.... Ladies and Gentleman
We call this one....
Tick Toxic 
because once that timer starts your opponent hasn’t got long.

You will need....

3 Glissa the Traitor
3 Core Prowler
4 Pistus Strike
4 Virulent Wound
4 Inkmoth nexus
4 Swamp
7 Forest

So what’s the plan? Well what we’re going to try with this deck is 4 different plays
at the same time...

one quarter aggro
one quarter removal
one quarter proliferate
one quarter recursion

In an ideal game you would play early aggro from the necropedes, use virulent wound to take out blockers and begin the poison counters.  Later game you’d use the throne and the necropedes to start proliferating the threats downs and counters up.   Corpse Cur and Glissa are there to get your attackers back.

You can use Tangle adder to tie up blockers and Core Prowler to proliferate when he kicks the buckett... 

Sneaky tricks? Well it wouldn’t be a Vader deck without some sideways chicanery... At first glance the inclusion of flight spell bomb may seem a bit mad... There’s only 4 sources of blue mana in the entire deck for a start.  Ok this next bit is important... In magic there are too many statistics and not enough thinking. Ok technically to get the most out of the spell bomb you would want to play it in a blue deck for card advantage and you’ll find a lot of players  read this card as... one colourless and one blue (target creature gains flying until the end of turn, draw a card)... But this isn’t the point... This deck, for reasons that will become obvious in a second, needs a way for creatures to gain flying... full stop... and one colourless mana for that ability is a bargain...  
So why do we want creatures to gain flying? Well two reasons...
 Firstly when combined with Pistus Strike this mini combo will take out anything... from a primeval titan to a Platinum Emperion and more importantly it will also give its controller a poison counter... (stick that in your 2 for 1 pipe and smoke it)
Secondly if we need to, we can give one of our lot flying to get that poison damage through.
And if all else fails it’s still fuel for the Throne of Geth...

Here’s a game v’s Elves...

Tun one they drop a treehugger
Turn one you give it a virulent wound and they get a counter.
Turn two they drop a pair of lanowars
Turn two you drop the pede.
Turn three they get an archdruid
Turn three you drop a clasp and then give the arch druid a wound and one from the clasp they get another counter.
Turn four they drop Ezuri
Turn four you swing with the pede – they chump with a lanowar, both die and you put the counter on Ezuri then proliferate with the clasp. Ezuri dies and they go to 3 poison...
Turn Five they drop a Garruk and make a beast.
Turn Five you drop a spell bomb and give the beast flying and then kill it with a Pistus strike they go to 4 poison.  

I think you can see where this is going....

This is a fun deck that’s quick and cheap... (We’ve given it 4 fetches to make it as competitive as possible, but it will run fine with basics and Glissa is currently going for about $6/7, but we predict her price will rise... If only because she’ll be awesome in EDH/Commander)

As some of these card haven't been released yet we'll have to just show you them rather than use our usual links....

Spoiler Alert... If you don't want to know you may want to look away about now..
For sideboard I'd recommend Duress, memoricide and the like... incase some nutter decides to build a shape anew / coloussus deck...

Monday, 24 January 2011

Farme Fatale EDH / Commander Deck

Today I woke with a 'mead infused' hangover, in a strange maiden’s bedchamber somewhere on  a plane I didn’t recognise . All I can tell you guys is I had the strangest dream. I dreamt that I was at war with all the mages in the world. As the battle raged higher, I realized with horror that not only had I forgotten all my mighty spells of combat, but I had also quite inexplicably become a farmer. Fortunately as I gazed round the ranch I discovered it was no ordinary farm, indeed it was a very special farm and I call it…

Farme Fatale

You will need…

Ok Guys I’m gonna start with the basics… if you’re new to EDH or just mad I think I should get you up to speed on the cards that all EDH decks should have…  Folks can argue till the cows come home (and they are on the way), but this is Gordon Vader list of must have cards inEDH/Commander (feel free to submit your suggestions) Obviously some of these are colour specific, but don’t worry too much about that now.

    Ok these are Gordon Vader’s all time, must have, top five EDH cards…

         Sensei’s Divining Top – Almost impossible to lose, this little cheeky scryer will let you get what you need and can help you draw answers at instant speed. They are getting pricey now, but you can still pick em up for about £4/$7 (Crystal ball is a good low budget version)

      Lightning Greaves – Generals like haste and more importantly they like shroud the 0 equip cost is what seperates these boots from the standard fair…  Whispersilk Cloak will do while you’re saving up.
      Sol Ring / Mana Vault / Mana Crypt – The cheapest of thes,e Mana Vault is still decent but you should try and run at last one of these…
         Tormod’s Crypt – Sometimes you just need graveyard hate and it doesn’t come much better than this, other option  include – Heap Doll and Relic of Progenetus. (in this deck I went for heap doll because a farm needs a scarecrow)
      Oblivion Stone – Board sweepers will keep everyone on your side, they come in various shapes and sizes, but for my money they rarely come stronger than the stone, other options are – Scourglass, Planar Cleansing, All is Dust… White has loads more options here and if you’re playing white you may want to look at Mass Calcify, Final Judgment, Wrath of God, Martial Coup, Day Of Judgment and  the king of EDH sweepers Hallowed Burial…

So there you have my budget top five EDH essentials… there are a hundred other cards I ‘d suggest if you have the money and the time to build a monster, but start cheap and play sneaky is what I always say…

So what’s next?  Well you’ve got your basics and what you need now is a plan… If you look at the post entitled, Farme Fatale update you’ll see a brief rundown of the generals I had to play. Each tdeck was specifically tuned to their general’s clolors and abilities… 


Wort’s deck was mostly instants and sorceries that are horrible when conspired (copied). Fireball/ Comet Storm/Destructive force etc etc.. 

Kemba’s deck was all about equipment and keeping them in play.

Sedris Deck was all  about getting fatties in the graveyard.

Sygg’s deck was basically polymorph and used various tutors and spells to find and protect Proteus Staff and the other half of the deck was about stealing creatures to use as targets. 

My Uril deck was about Farming...

Ok ok I will admit I did put a bit more thought into it than simply having lots of cows, but I did try and find farming related cards that were actually good rather than just about agriculture (I also turned down cards that perhaps could have been better than the ones I picked because they were farm related..) But.. most importantly I did try to utilize my generals awesome ability…

So first I’ll show you the Aura’s

Scourge of the nobilis
Fortitude – (almost as good as totem umbras)
Spider umbra (speak of the devil)
Bear Umbra
Hyena umbra
Elend Umbra
Mammoth Umbra
Boar Umbra
Shiv’s embrace
Lightning Talons
Luminous Wake
Sigil of the nayan gods
Celestial Mantle   (I could barely leave this little cracker behind could I?)

Next up the Two R’s   Ramp and Removal…


Culivate  - (do you see what I did here?)
Rampant Growth -
Harrow -
Winter’s Sky - (poor man’s mana reflection… great when you have a mix of lands, so you can still do stuff on the odd rounds and then ramps like a MOFO on the even ones..)
Carpet of Flowers - (a random one this, I play it because there’s always somebody playing big blue at our Club and this time it was Syyg and that early mana comes in really handy….)
Land Tax – (still on the farm theme)
Reap and Sow  - (get it? get it?)
Khalni Heart Expedition - ( a very very poor man’s Primeval Titan)


Path to Exile
Swords To Ploughshares (yep I got a farm card into my removal)
Crib Swap (technically this is a cow too)
Condemn (if you're in white there's no excuse not to run this card)

Here's The Search
Treefolk Harbinger – (can find me a forest or any of my changelings)
Worldy Tutor – (the cheapest of all the tutors cashwise a least)
Hibernation’s end – (an expensive, but rewarding way to find a lot of cows…)
Into the north – (go get me a highland weald thank you)

Ok so that’s the nuts and bolts but what about the Cows? Well these are all I could find…

Aurochs (how could I not have them)
Bull Aurochs
Rhimebound Aurochs
Aurochs herd
Taurean Mauler
Pillarfield ox
Yoked Ploughbeast
Totem Guide Hartebeast (I decided that these looked like cows and probably made good eating, besides with Uril as my general I needed some aura tutoring,, and then I thought Venison mmmmm….)
Game Trail Changeling – (This and the mauler earlier are cows that are also sheep and pigs and porcupines and fairies and mermaids and avatars and whatever the things are that live inside biscuits… it’s all a bit disconcerting if you ask me…)
Glimmerpoint Stag - (Well, while we’re on the game menu)
Grazing Gladehart – ( I beat this one taste’s really good.)
Brindle Boar – (we’re on to the swine now, A farm’s gotta have some pigs)
Argothian Swine
Realm Razer – ( Dude… it’s so clearly a big pig.... I could totally eat this)
Ok now we’re into the realms of fantasy a little bit and I may have reached here and there a little, but I hope you’ll agree there’s still cow-ish-esque-ness- in here somewhere.

Aura Gnarlid -(With all these auras on the battlefield we need another excuse to use them)
Woolly thoctar – (I got a friend who keeps these, he says the milk's awesome)
Ravenclaw Gargantuan – (Slaughter time for these guys is not for the faint at heart)
Mirror Entity - (It’s a cow… well really it’s just there to turn everything into Aurochs or incase some idiot brings their Sliver deck)
Zodiac  Ox (I am fortunate to have a decent amount of the Portal 3 kingdoms stuff. This is one of my favourite sets, the art is beautiful the cards are random and mad and hardly anyone has any.)
Zodiac Goat (well a good farm needs a Goat)
Zodiac Rooster (One of the few ‘plains walk’ cards in existence, if memory serves me there are under 5 such cards in over 11,000 cards)
Of course there’s one more card that any good farm can’t be without any ideas?
Well also from my Portal 3 Kingdom Set, my last card ishere

I’m not going to bore u with the land other than suggest you do what I did and stick any land of the appropriate colours into the deck and add some basic (and snow basic) land.

You may notice that he usual links that I normally provide aren't working on this post and I want to apoligise for this, but I don't know exactly what went wrong (I'm blaming google gremlins)

but if you want to checl any card just cut and paste it here...