Hello & welcome to this weekly deck tech! This week we’re exploring EDH with a very fund (for the person who plays it) deck: Hokori, Dust Drinker.
Now, it’s to no one surprise that I love Stax & Attrition archetypes, so this commander, in my opinion is very fun and super cool to play. For those who don’t know what Stax is; the archetype revolves around making it near impossible for your opponents to play anything. You use effects that attack them from every angle, just to prevent them from doing stuff. Most of the effects are symmetrical, but you build your deck around ignoring those effects. By going over the different types of cards you need, you’ll understand.
Keeping Things Tapped
Let’s start off with your commander’s effect: making sure things stay tapped. By this mean, your opponents can’t really play anything, since none of their lands untap (well, just one, but whatever). Other cards like Static Orb, Tangle Wire, Mana Web, Storage Matrix, Marble Titan Meekstone & Crackdown are amazing at making sure that your opponent’s things stay tapped at all time.
Now that we’ve seen how to make sure nothing untaps, what about tapping them in the first place? You have so many options in White, with cards like Kismet, Loxodon Gatekeeper, Thalia Heretic Cathar, Imposing Sovereign, Orb of Dreams, Yosei the Morning Star, Icy Manipulator & Scepter of Dominance. Now you’ve effectively tapped everything and are making sure that everything stays like that.
When Tapping isn’t Enough
Sometimes you need to get rid of things, that’s just part of life. You have different ways of destroying stuff and they’re all really fun cards! Stuff like Oblation, Return to Dust, Austere Command, Wrath of God, Day of Judgment, Terminus, Swords to Plowshare & Path to Exile are obvious ones, but you can also play some fun cards like World Queller, Elesh Norn, Michiko Konda Truth Seeker, Archon of Justice, Tragic Arrogance, Cataclysmic Gearhulk, Smokestack, Karmic Justice & Martyr’s Bond. With those cards you have that extra Attrition that makes the deck so much fun. Oh, you can also play lands like Ghost Quarter, Strip Mine, Wasteland, Tectonic Edge, Dust Bowl & Encroaching Wastes, paired with Sun Titan & Crucible of Worlds just to screw with your opponent even more.
They Gotta Pay the Tax
Part of what makes a Stax deck is the Tax part. Just put a big old tax on everything! Go nuts! Play cards like Aura of Silence, Thalia Guardian of Thraben, Lodestone Golem, Vryn Wingmare, Sphere of Resistance, Magus of the Tabernacle (you can also play the Tabernacle at Pendrall Vale if budget is not an issue), Leonin Arbiter, Spelltithe Enforcer, Glowrider, Chancellor of the Annex, Kataki War’s Wage, Suppression Field, Trinisphere & Defense Grid. Now your opponent has to pay extra to play & keep stuff, their stuff keeps getting tapped, doesn’t untap and some of it just gets destroyed all the time. You might think this is enough, but no, it’s never enough.
Sometimes you just got to say Nope. Play some cards that literally prevents them from doing things. Stuff like Silence & Orim’s Chant paired with Isochron Scepter. Or other things like Stony Silence, Leyline of Sanctity, Aegis of the Gods, Nevermore, Ethersworn Canonist, Spirit of the Labyrinth, Grand Abolisher, Aven Mindcensor, Containment Priest, Eidolon of Rhetoric, Angelic Arbiter, Phyrexian Revoker, Pithing Needle, Iona Shield of Emeria, Angel of Jubilation, Sanctum Prelate, Chalice of the Void, Linvala Keeper of SIlence, Ward of Bones, Grafdigger’s Cage, Cursed Totem & Rest in Peace. You have many, many ways to just deal with most situation by just saying “you can’t do that”; white has answers to most things. Also, cards like Torpor Orb & Hushwing Gryff in EDH are plain insane, you should play them.
Building a Castle
This goes in the same vein as taxing; if ever your opponent is able to keep some stuff on the field, make sure it doesn’t attack you basically. White has access to so many Pillowfort effects; stuff like Ghostly Prison, Windborn Muse, Archangel of Tithes, Peacekeeper, Magus of the Moat (and Moat if budget is not an issue), Norn’s Annex & Sphere of Safety are amazing at making sure no one can attack you.
What About My Mana?
We’ve made it clear that everyone is getting screwed by your cards, even you. So you have to find ways to make it less sucky for you. Easy, just make sure you have non-lands mana sources, ways to untap things & stuff like that. Play cards like Aether Vial, Gilded Lotus, Land Tax, Marble Diamond, Hedron Archive, Mind Stone, Thran Dynamo, Gold Myr, Knight of the White Orchid, Solemn Simulacrum, Burnished Hart, Palladium Myr, Sword of Feast & Famine, Everflowing Chalice, Darksteel Ingot, Worn Powerstone, Unwinding Clock, Pearl Medallion, Mana Vault, Fellwar Stone, Caged Sun, Basalt Monolith, Grim Monolith, Coldsteel Heart, Commander Sphere, Mana Crypt, Coalition Relic, Khalni Gem, Thought Vessel & Clock of Omens. You’ve got plenty to choose from, just make sure you have enough non-land mana producers and some ways to untap them!
Here are some cards that don’t really fit any of the previous categories that can really help a deck like this: Gideon Jura, Gideon Ally of Zendikar, Elspeth Knight-Errant, Elspeth Tirel, Elspeth Sun’s Champion, Scroll Rack, Sensei’s Divining Top, Eight-and-a-Half-Tailes, Mother of Runes, Platinum Angel, Emeria Shepherd, Stoneforge Mystic (to grab that sweet sword of Feast & Famine), Mentor of the Meek, Recruiter of the Guard & Enlightened Tutor.
That’s it for this week! I hope you guys enjoyed this deck tech as much as I did. If I missed anything let me know. I’ll see you guys next week for a Standard deck tech!
<b>Blake:</b> If you have exploration, glacial chasm plus thespian's stage you can do that [loop glacial chasm] every turn and reassemble the same board to basically go to square 1 every turn...I played a game at a side event against a 10-year old kid playing...I enjoy tormenting small children when I'm playing magic but that's a different story...so he was playing burn so what I did was I got the glacial chasm lock against him and I started looping it and he was groaning and moaning as you'd expect but y'know I don't know whether or not he knows that he can win in response to me dropping my glacial chasm so I was very careful about it; because if I try to sacrifice the chasm to attack with a Marit Lage, then I may just lose to fireblast or lightning bolt or what have you...so against burn instead of trying to make a 20/20, sac the glacial chasm and attack, which gives them time to kill me with instant speed burn spells so what I did instead is what I did to this 10 year old child, which is while establishing the lock I had an extra land drop every turn that I wasn't using. Because again if you have Remeber if you have exploration, thespian's stage, thespian's stage you have one stage copy the other which is already targeting a glacial chasm you don't need to sacrifice a land every turn if you loop them repeatably. So once you're looping those two repeatably and you've done away with the drawback of sacrificing a land, the exploration allows you to play an extra land and advance your board every turn so everytime I would dredge, I'd get back a thespian's stage and also a ghost quarter and then I ghost quartered every single mountain out of the burn opponents deck<p/><b>Jerry:</b> Oh, you're a monster!<p/><b>Blake:</b> The sort of moments of realization were really kind of crucial. At first he was just like, "This is really weird, why are you ghost quatering my fetch lands?" "Why are you ghost quartering my mountains?" He was just, "This really weird" and then he started to see more and more. "Wait a minute are you trying to get rid of all my mountains?!" and then once he found his last one he said, "Oh God, oh god that was my last one" I was like, "Yep, I thought so"<p/><b>Jerry:</b> You shouldn't have done that! He was just a boy<p/><b>Blake:</b> So, really the purest joy in life is putting people on zero mana. It's why I play the deck.<p/></p>
Okay, okay, I’ll tell the story about that one Fallen.
It didn’t happen like that. We didn’t, you know, do anything actively - no handshake, no icy stare of grudging mutual respect. I don’t even know which hand you would shake. Do they shake hands? It must be complicated.
Anyway, it was like this. I was on the Moon. I cracked a Hive structure near Mare Imbrium, looking for a Shrine, and they just - swarmed. Ranks and ranks and ranks of Thrall, pouring out between the columns, but the columns were Knights, and all the shadows behind them rose up hissing sorcery.
Of course I ran.
I had a line of egress and while yes it was full of Thrall I had a backup too. I went upslope. Took cover in the shadow of a crashed Phaeton. Emptied my machine gun, ducked down to reload, and saw her at the other end of the hull, killing Thrall: a Fallen in Exile colors, bannered in the marks of a Baron, though the flags were claw-torn and stained with Hive ash. She was alone. I think she must have lost her crew.
I didn’t really have time to shoot her and she didn’t really have time to shoot me so we just went back to killing Hive. Knights pushed me out into the open and back up the range to a high stone saddle in the shadow of an old interferometry array. It was good ground so she came up there too.
For a while we just killed things which is hard to make interesting in a story so I’ll pass it over.
At the end the Wizards came. I climbed the array to get an angle on them and she fell back to the base of the antennae where she broke her swords off in a Knight. I saw that happen and I don’t know if I can tell you how I felt. She was another living thing with a mind I could understand and she hadn’t howled at me or tried to eat my Ghost. I cheered when the Knight went down.
When I came down, empty on all guns, she was slumped against a bulkhead staring at me with all her tiny black eyes. Ether leaking out of her like smoke. The Knight hadn’t died easily. Downslope the last Wizard moved like fire behind another line of Thrall.
I looked at her and wondered how many innocent human lives she’d ended on those broken blades.
She did the strangest thing then. Took the last shock pistol from her bandolier and threw it between us, as if to offer it. When I went to pick it up she tried to knife me, but she was slow, and when I broke her arms and opened her throat she didn’t seem surprised.
To this day I wonder if she hated me, or wanted to make me kill her, or just felt she should spare me the choice.
Maybe one of these for Jon/Sansa? “remember when we were in high school and we swore that if we were still single at 30 we’d marry each other, well hey guess whose birthday it is” “i planned out this super romantic proposal and you just ruined it by beating me to whole proposing thing” :D
Creepypasta #989: Fun Facts for Kids! The Fifty Nifty United States
Alabama: The 96th president,
Pyrope Vesuvian, was assembled in Alabama, the first president to be engineered
from various body parts of previous presidents.
Alaska: The sun never rises
in the winter because there is a giant standing in front of it. The giant is so
tall that its head reaches into the stars. It was the first to see the black
ships that originated from those stars.
Arizona: The state reptile
of Arizona is the Time-Traveling Basilisk Lizard. They run so fast they arrive
before they left! The army is using them to travel back in time and figure out
where the war went wrong.
California: The highest point
in the state is God’s Obsidian Watchtower, rising 440 feet above the ocean
where California sank after the first weapon detonated.
Delaware: The first state
admitted to the union. The first state to host an enemy ship. The first state
to boldly kill that unearthly ambassador and declare war.
Hawaii: Did you know there
are no snakes in Hawaii? They were all recruited by the army. All citizens must
fight, even snakes. Their armor is the eggshells of extinct birds; their spears
are the severed stingers of deadly jellyfish.
Idaho: Has more ghost
towns than any state. These towns are inhabited by a quarter million ghosts,
who outnumber living residents 12 to 1.
Kansas: Contains the
world’s largest grain elevator, where President Vesuvian hid the nuclear
weapons that the invaders eventually used against us.
Maine: It is the closest
state to Europe and Africa. If you stand on the seashore and look east, you can
see the two continents that accepted the offer of “peace” and “friendship”,
dooming themselves to the possibility of subjugation by these extraterrestrial
foes. Only the United States had the courage to declare war. Stay far away from
This state is always on fire. It was set aflame as a burnt offering to God, to
purify the land, in hopes that one day He would accept the offering, and would
finally rise from his sanctified throne to bestow victory upon us. Amen.
This state’s wide-open prairies were transformed into the world’s largest
children’s cemetery. Instead of headstones, the tiny corpses are encased in
amber, and line the lonely roads as a monument to what we have lost.
Utah: This state’s
sparkling white salt flats provided bricks for the Holy Salt Temple, the safest
place to be during an air strike. The enemies are deathly afraid of salt and
Wyoming: Did you know that
Wyoming is the least densely populated state? That means more room to build a
prison so large it can hold all citizens who oppose the war. All Americans must
support the war. All Americans must fight the war; even you, little
one! This is the last remaining nation on Earth to defy and
resist the invaders’ impending takeover of the minds of humanity. Dissenters
are indistinguishable from those whose brains have been
commandeered. They must be imprisoned.
An emblem of a secret guild, the Dimir insignia is only seen by its own members — and the doomed.
Role in Ravnica
In the dark, slick corridors of the undercity lurks the unfathomable network of the Dimir guild. House Dimir is Ravnica’s dark but open secret: There are at least two levels of the Dimir: the overt level, the face of the guild the general public of Ravnica is allowed to see, and the covert level, that which consists of the inner guild and the members Ravnicans suspect exist but rarely, if ever, see. The Dimir’s role in Ravnica is to provide covert services that other guilds can’t or won’t, using their secrecy as both weapon and defense. The Dimir again serve as intelligence gatherers, serving the other nine guilds by brokering secrets about their enemies and offering information to the highest bidder. Dimir is hidden even from itself, using pockets of covert agents who are aware of only a few other contacts. Dimir agents leave no trace, destroying memories of witnesses to their crimes, and even going so far as to eliminate their own memories of their assignments. In the past the DImir where a total secret unknown to most of Ravnica.
Transmute (cost) ((cost), Discard this card: Search your library for a card with the same converted mana cost as this card, reveal it, and put it into your hand. Then shuffle your library. Transmute only as a sorcery.)
Cipher ((After casting) then you may exile this spell card encoded on a creature you control. Whenever that creature deals combat damage to a player, its controller may cast a copy of this card without paying its mana cost.)
In a space where there is no room, in a structure that was never built, meets the guild that doesn’t exist. Such is the guildhall of the Dimir called Duskmantle. It is shielded by memory wards so no one really knows if it exists, let alone remembers its exact location.
Szadek a psychic vampire was the leader of the group that would become the Dimir. Not well know is Szadek had helped Azor I write the guildpact. Szadek wanted to control all of Ravnica but saw if the proto-guild didn’t come to a truce there would be no world to rule. And ever the schemer Szadek new if the Dimir waited they could someday bend or break the guildpact. Might be be the reason the Dimir where given the power to put checks on the guilds (by spying on the other guilds and spreading that info) as well as try and break the guildpact, which in turn make the guildpact more powerful and resilient. This also meant the Dimir where kept secret with only their members and a few of the higher ranking members of the other guild knew of them. Most people on Ravnica believed that there was only 9 guild and if there ever had a been a tenth guild it had long since died and forgotten.
However, due to a mistake when Agrus Kos arrested Szadek breaking the guildpact. Later Szadek was killed in his cell, allowing his spirit to take over the ghost quarter Agyrem. He was later sealed and used to kill Augustin IV. After the mending happened Agyrem was split from Ravnica leaving Szadek and the rest of spirits statues unknown.
Other Guild Leaders
Lazav may be uniquely qualified to be the Dimir guildmaster: he is a shapeshifting mage whose mysterious genius flashes with telepathic impressions of the entire Dimir network. He (or is it she? or it?) shapeshifts into a variety of guises as his needs and plans require; he may step out into the Ravnican streets as an elderly widow to eavesdrop at the bazaar, become a vedalken hussar of the Azorius Senate to sidestep a checkpoint, or transform into a Tin Street merchant to deceive a passing noble. At its lowest level and hidden level of the guild Lazav and his direct contacts guide and manipulate the operations of the guild. Members of House Dimir assassinate, extort, and destabilize without knowing who made the order or why. After the events of Return to Ravnica it is unknown what happened to Lazav but it can be guessed he is hiding and planning as all good Dimir do.
Other Legendary Guild members
Circu, Dimir Lobotomist was the Dimir Guild Champion during the Ravnica block.
Mirko Vosk is a high ranking member of the House Dimir and one of the few remaining psychic vampires. When the Izzet League began their research into the Implicit Maze, Mirko was assigned to gather as much knowledge of the maze as possible, leading him to cross paths with Jace Beleren. When the Maze challenge was announced, due to his knowledge of the maze, Marko Vosk was made the maze runner. However Lazav trailed behind messing with the minds of the maze runners, until Jace was able to bring them together and win the maze.
During the fall of the Guildpact
With Szadek the only one who know the whole wed of the DImir and their exposure to the public the guild fell apart. The location of Duskmantle was lost and many of the dimmer agents retuned to the population. But quietly Lazavs intelligence and ambition led him to created a new Dimir network. But now exposed the DImir have adopted a public face, being used as couriers, investigators, reporters, and archivists. These public agents serve twin purposes: to give the rest of Ravnica a “friendly” face of the guild and to be the street-level eyes and ears of the Dimir, while the true Dimir are able to plot in the shadows.
What do you guys think? Real or fake? If it’s real, it reflects a previously used drawback found in Ghost Quarter and Path to Exile and I guess we may have five of them in the first set and the remaining enemy-color duals in the second.
Fetch, dual, full-art and (potentially) man lands in Standard… Someone is trying to break yet another sales rescord.
Edit: Some people pointed out the source of this image as TheProxyGuy account on Twitter. It’s not real. Thanks for making it clear, folks!
This unidentifiable monstrosity is said, by some, to be a vile, phantasmagorical killer from beyond the grave… though there is some evidence to suggest that it may be a bizarre, mutant cephalopod, which lurks in the filthy labyrinth of the London sewer system waiting to rise up and kill again. Considered by most paranormal experts to fit more accurately into the realm of haunting, the Nameless Thing of Berkeley Square has left behind tantalizing shreds of evidence – and, unfortunately, more than one corpse – which suggests that the “ghost,” which inhabits the 4th floor (although some claim it’s the 2nd) of number 50 Berkeley Square, in what has been referred to as “the most haunted house in London,” may not really be a case of spiritual infestation at all, but rather a semi-aquatic, predatory, cryptid phenomenon. Although no one is exactly sure when the first encounter with this beast occurred, the first known account of the “Thing” date as far back as the early 1840’s, when 20-year-old, Sir Robert Warboys, came across strange rumors surrounding the notorious Berkeley Square address while imbibing at a tavern in London’s Holborn district one evening. Evidently Warboys was a man not prone to superstitious claptrap as he derisively dismissed the legend as “unadulterated poppycock.” Warboys’ barroom compatriots wholeheartedly disagreed with his assessment and, in what one can only assume was an effort to knock him down a peg or two, challenged the young noble to spend the night in the haunted 2nd floor room. Warboys, with what was no doubt the heady rush of alcohol fueled confidence, raised his pitcher of ale skyward and announced to his cohorts: “I wholeheartedly accept your preposterous harebrained challenge!” Sir Robert then proceeded to the allegedly haunted dwelling, where he insisted the landlord allow him to spend the night in the “ghost-filled” quarters. After some debate, the landlord reluctantly agreed to Warboys request, but only with the caveat that the young man be armed with a pistol and that at the first sign of anything even remotely “out of the ordinary,” he would yank the cord that was attached to a bell in the landlord’s room below. Warboys apparently scoffed at the notion, but agreed to the terms. As the clock chimed midnight, Warboys settled down at a table to await the “Thing’s” arrival. The landlord, with, what one must assume was a great lack of enthusiasm, left his temporary tenant alone in the dreaded room, save for his pistol and a single candle, but it wouldn’t be long before the two would meet again. Less than an hour following the landlord’s departure, at precisely Forty-five minutes past the hour, the proprietor was startled from an unfit slumber by the violent clanging of the bell adjacent to his bed. Before he even had time to clear his thoughts and react, a gunshot echoed from above his room. With a burst of adrenaline, the landlord leapt from his bed, and climbed the stairs at a rapid pace. When he arrived at the door to the notorious room, he pushed it open to reveal a sight which he would never forget… The room was apparently unchanged except for the notable fact that Sir Robert had left his perch at the table and was now wedged in the corner of the room, the still smoking pistol caught in his white-knuckled grip of his fear contorted corpse. In the very short time the landlord spent in the room he noted that Warboys’ his lips were peeled back from his clenched teeth in a grimace of horror and eyes seemed to be literally bulging from his skull. The landlord followed Sir Robert’s gaze to a lone bullet hole in the opposite wall and speculated that Warboys had fired at the infamous “Thing,” but, for reasons he could not surmise, the bullet had had no effect on the beast. There can be no doubt that 50 Berkeley Square can boast a horrific array of ostensibly paranormal encounters (ranging from strange sounds reported by neighbors to the confirmed deaths of guests and domestic servants,) but there is one confrontation which has become the benchmark of this legend. Just three years following the horrific death of Sir Robert Warboys, 50 Berkeley Square became the sight of yet another gruesome demise. Although the details of this narrative have varied in minor degrees from one retelling to another, the core of the account has always remained the same: In 1943, two sailors from Portsmouth, Robert Martin and Edward Blunden, after having squandered their lodging funds on an evening of drunken ribaldry, noticed a “To Let” on the then abandoned Berkeley Square abode and managed to break into a basement window of the dwelling in search of a night’s rest. Discovering that the lower level of the house was uncomfortably damp (not to mention rat infested,) the sailors migrated upwards, finally settling down in the now notorious room. Blunden, presumably the more sober of the two, expressed the anxiety he felt upon entering the room. He claimed that he felt a “presence,” but these fears were promptly dismissed by his shipmate, who used his rifle to prop open a window to allow for a breeze and built a fire in the long unused hearth with bits of broken furniture and rotting floorboards. It wasn’t long before the two men were huddled on the relative warmth of floor, fast asleep. Sometime after midnight Blunden awoke to see the door to the room creaking open. Little by little a sliver of dim, grayish light crept across the wooden floor. Too terrified to move, Blunden managed to wake his accomplice. The two men sat up as they heard a strange, moist, scraping sound slowly approach them. Later, Martin claimed that it sounded as if something were dragging itself across the floor. Suddenly, the terrified men leapt to their feet and came face to face with the abhorrent visage of what could only describe as a hideous monstrosity. The creature undulated between the sailors and what was their only hope for escape; the open door. Then, just as the trembling Blunden began to reach toward the rifle, which was still wedged in the window frame, the creature suddenly lunged forward, wrapping itself around the young sailor’s throat. Seizing the opportunity, the panic stricken Martin ran from the house, screaming for help. Soon enough he stumbled upon a patrolling police officer. Although skeptical of the young sailor’s frenzied tale (and no doubt attributing it to the almost overwhelming stench of alcohol which permeated his uniform) the officer dutifully followed Martin back to Berkeley Square. According to the account, Martin and the officer ran up the stairs, but found no sign of Blunden in the room. Martin reclaimed his rifle as the two men continued to search the house. Their efforts seemed to prove fruitless however, until the men entered the basement and were greeted to a ghastly image that would haunt them for the remainder of their lives… Lying at the base of the stairs in Berkeley Square’s moist, rock walled cellar was Blunden’s dismembered corpse. His body lay in a mangled heap, with his head wrenched viciously to the side. The officer reported that the young man’s eyes (much like those of Sir Robert Warboys) were wide with unimaginable horror. This appalling tale, like so many legends of this ilk, has also been recounted with a decidedly more phantasmal twist. The most notable variation in this retelling is the description of the “Thing” as a shadowy man-like figure with a deformed face and body that burst in on the sailors and proceeded to strangle Blunden with “cold, misty looking hands.” Yet another discrepancy has Blunden perishing not in the basement, but being hurled from the window and impaled on a spike on the wrought iron fence that surrounded Berkeley Square. It’s these incongruities that have led many investigators to file this case under the “paranormal” banner, assuming that it is just another ghost story, but there is intriguing (though admittedly scant) evidence to suggested that this may be a genuine, albeit exceedingly bizarre, corporeal entity. While these shocking encounters leave more questions as to the “Thing’s” identity than answers, there are other alleged eyewitness accounts, which can help us to paint a more complete picture of this creature. Some have described as an amorphous being, formless and slimy, which emits a “gruesome sloppy noise” when it moves; while others insist it is a dark, shapeless, spectral form, which was described as a “collection of shadows,” that attacks its victims with clawed feet and razor sharp, bird-like talons. Though accounts conflict regarding the actual shape and size of the beast, at least one eyewitness has included tentacles in his description of the creature, likening the fiend to a small, viciously deformed octopus, which pulls itself across the floor, leaving a viscous trail in its wake. This description has led some researchers to speculate that the Thing may actually be some kind of mutated freshwater Octopi or an unknown, amphibious, marine animal that managed to migrate from the Thames into London’s vast subterranean sewer system, where it was able to infiltrate the Berkeley Square home via the plumbing. It can also be speculated that this beast was looking to feed on the ample rat population that dwelt in the house, when it accidentally stumbled across the more “substantial” prey of the drunken sailors. In the 1920s, eminent psychic investigator Harry Price revealed a plethora of data regarding earlier encounters with the “Thing.” While pouring over scads of newspaper articles, he came across a story from 1790 that claimed 50 Berkeley Square once housed the headquarters for a crew of counterfeiters. Price speculated (rather dubiously) that the counterfeiters — in a plot lifted right from Scooby-Doo — had concocted the spooky tale to frighten off curious onlookers and provide a “spectral” cover for the noisy processes that accompanied their illicit nocturnal activities. Price also managed to turn up another 1840 account of bizarre noises (including bells, loud footsteps and heavy dragging sounds) emanating from the house that were so rambunctious a cadre of courageous neighbors felt obliged to search the abode, to no avail. He also came across an 1870 article published in the magazine “Notes and Queries,” by W. E. Howlett, which stated: “The mystery of Berkeley Square still remains a mystery. The story of the haunted house in Mayfair can be recapitulated in a few words; the house contains at least one room of which the atmosphere is supernaturally fatal to body and mind. A girl saw, heard and felt such horror in it that she went mad, and never recovered sanity enough to tell how or why.” “A gentleman, a disbeliever in ghosts, dared to sleep in number 50 and was found a corpse in the middle of the floor after frantically ringing for help in vain. Rumour suggests other cases of the same kind, all ending in death, madness, or both as a result of sleeping, or trying to sleep in that room. The very party walls of the house, when touched, are found saturated with electric horror. It is uninhabited save by an elderly man and his wife who act as caretakers; but even these have no access to the room. This is kept locked, the key being in the hands of a mysterious and seemingly nameless person who comes to the house once every six months, locks up the elderly couple in the basement, and then unlocks the room and occupies himself in it for hours.” Price also noted that while 50 Berkeley Square was located on a piece real-estate wedged in one of London’s most enviable districts, it had remained vacant for inexplicably long stretches of time. His personal conclusion of the whole affair was that “a particularly nasty poltergeist had been active at number 50 in the 1840s, but doubted that the ‘thing’ was still at large”. Since 1853, the ground floor of the house on Berkeley Square has played host to an antique bookshop known as Maggs Brothers. Although there have been no reported sightings of the creature in the 20th century, it has been noted that employees of the bookshop are not allowed to go up to the top floor. They say a police notice hangs on the wall inside the house that was put up in the 1950s. It states that the top floor of the house is not to be used, even for storage… No one is exactly sure why. Although in a case like this it is difficult to separate truth from legend, one likely reason that there have been no recent encounters with this beast is the fact that (if this creature indeed has oceanic roots) it has, in all likelihood, returned to the fathomless depths of the sea, or — more chillingly — it and its offspring may still be lurking in the labyrinth of centuries old tunnels, which weave their way beneath Great Briton’s capitol city, feeding on rats, waiting to crawl back up from the sewer to claim more human victims.
I’m all about having fun in commander, but this is a commander for those times when you just want to watch the world burn, for when you’re just tired of being Mr. nice guy. Hokori, Dust Drinker is a Mono-White creature from Betrayer’s of Kamigawa and he’s up to no good. At 2/2 for 4 mana and an ability that stops all but one land from untapping on each player’s turn, he is definitely a member of the fun police.
Slowing things down
As well as putting a limit on the amount of lands that untap each turn, there are cards that mean other permanents can only untap one at a time or others that force things to enter tapped. Orb of Dreams forces all permanents to enter tapped, which goes well with Hokori’s ability. Blind Obedience forces your opponents creatures and artifacts to enter tapped which will slow down aggro strategies. Imi Statue slows artifacts to one a turn, which will limit the amount of mana rocks. Older cards such as Winter Orb slow down lands untapping too. Creatures such as Ethersworn Canonist and Eidolon of Rhetoric limit the amount of spells that can be played each turn too. You may need an Amulet of Vigor and a Pearl Medallion to allow you to gain the upper hand though.
No, you can’t do that.
I don’t know about you, but my group has a lot of sac outlets which make exile removal nigh on impossible. Don’t worry, you can stop activated abilities with cards like Damping Matrix and Linvala, Keeper of Silence. ETB effects can be stopped with Torpor Orb. Grafdigger’s Cage can stop reanimator strategies which is also common at my group
Ward of Bones prevents other players from playing certain cards if they control more of that type than you, which will help keep a level playing field. Spirit of the Labyrinth may also be a useful addition to such a deck to slow card draw.
Everyone hates taxes
Over the years, cards with abilities that make things more expensive have been released. They go perfectly in this deck to put more pressure on. Lodestone Golem makes non-artifact spells 1 more to cast. Thorn of Amethyst and Thalia, Guardian of Thraben put taxes of 1 mana on non-creature spells. Aura of Silence puts a tax of 2 mana on Artifacts and Enchantments that opponents attempt to cast. Defense Grid and Grand Abolisher prevent instant speed responses by making them more expensive or prohibiting them all together. Chancellor of the Annex has another taxing ability that makes all spells 1 more to cast. Of course then there are the taxes on attacking you with cards like Sphere of Safety, Ensnaring Bridge, Norn’s Annex and Ghostly Prison.
Must Relieve the Pressure
So now you’ve put taxes on just about everything. Everything is entering tapped and things aren’t going anywhere. The other players are going to start coming at you to relieve the pressure. To protect yourself, you may have put taxes on attacking, and hopefully there are also taxes on removal too so the wall will hopefully hold. But what if it doesn’t? What if a straggler or two gets through your wall. Fog abilities can help here. Kami of False Hope is a good start since he is a one drop. Ethereal Haze, Pollen Lullaby and Holy Day are also good for quick damage prevention. Crawlspace limits the amount of creatures coming at you. Cheap permanent removal such as Path to Exile, Swords to Plowshares, Oblivion Ring and Dispatch are definitely going to be needed too. Board Wipes such as Phyrexian Rebirth and End Hostilities can be used as a last resort to hopefully buy you some time to recover.
I have noticed that common lands to have in such a deck include Strip Mine, Wasteland, Tectonic Edge and Ghost Quarter. I may eventually use such lands. but for now I think the deck is mean enough and have decided on Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx, Drifting Meadow, Secluded Steppe and Buried Ruin for artifact recursion. I unleashed this deck recently and I can say it isn’t fun to play against. I do hope you find this deck useful and until next time, Happy Deck Building.