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One Step Ahead: Mono Black Control


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CloaknDagger



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2009 7:25 pm    Post subject: One Step Ahead: Mono Black Control Reply with quote

The dominance of Jund has signaled the inevitable slowdown of T2. New formats usually start this way, super aggro decks (vamps, gobs, white weenie), then as people test and flesh out decks to beat those, solid decks like Jund come and take over. Right now it's my prediction that we're going to see a ton a solid mid-range decks starting to shape the format, out-muscling aggro and presenting constant large threats to control. This is my deck to beat that predicted environment:

// Lands
25 [ZEN] Swamp (1)

// Creatures

4 [ZEN] Gatekeeper of Malakir
4 [ZEN] Bloodghast
2 [ZEN] Ob Nixilis, the Fallen

Removal

4 [M10] Tendrils of Corruption (Solid. Can take out anything without shroud. The lifegain wins games)
3 [M10] Doom Blade (3 is enough to take out those angels and not enough to be stuck against black decks)
2 [ALA] Infest (could be more maindeck depending on field)
1 [M10] Consume Spirit (Good lifegain, can be a final punch)

Control

4 [M10] Diabolic Tutor
3 [ZEN] Mind Sludge (MVP. This + Haunting echoes = game)
2 [M10] Duress
2 [M10] Liliana Vess (Also MVP. Discard = Awesome vs control, and ultimate ability gives you back all the critters you killed)
1 [ZEN] Sorin Markov
1 [ZEN] Blood Tribute

2 [M10] Haunting Echoes

// Sideboard

4 Disfigure
3 Desecrated Earth (techy vs multi-color control. Another discard and disruption. Also hoses Mono W control Sky Ruin land.)
2 Duress
2 Infest
1 Doom Blade
1 Mind Sludge
1 Sorin Markov
1 Haunting Echoes


If you notice, after sideboarding, against aggro you have a full arsenal of 4 Disfigure, 4 infest, 4 Doomblade, 4 Tendrils, 4 Gatekeeper, 1 consume spirit, 2 Liliana.

Vs control you have a full arsenal of 4 duress, 4 Mind sludge, 4 diabolic tutor, 3 echoes, and the recurring Bloodghast.

Tips: Keep in one echoes vs aggro. Once you've stabilized and they're in topdecking mode, tutor for the echoes if you don't already have it and deplete their deck of any threats.

Vs creature less/light decks that have plains, keep in a few doom blades. You can expect 4 baneslayers after SB.

Random synergy = Sorin Markov - 3 sets players at 10, drop a land, get hasted bloodghasts back.

This is what I believe will be the answer to the next phase of T2. I still have further testing to see if Sign in Blood has a place here, but so far I've rarely been in a position of wanting more cards in my hand. The planeswalkers win games by themselves.

- Cloak
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CloaknDagger



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Super Pro Tip: Path to Exile is your best friend. Best. Friend. Gladly let them hit your turn 2 bloodghast. Most people won't even think about it. It recurs, PtE removes from game. What they won't realize until it's too late is that extra land you got means a turn 4 mind sludge to their face. It's just off the hook.
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ChuckNorris



Joined: 13 Dec 2005
Posts: 146

PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like this deck. I'm going to mess around with it and see what I can come up with.
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Spyx



Joined: 31 Oct 2004
Posts: 1188

PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2009 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

how do you deal with the stag?
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ryuzaki



Joined: 11 Jun 2007
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2009 10:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

he kill everything else in the board and hits a gatekeeper
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ryuzaki



Joined: 11 Jun 2007
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2009 10:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

no sign in blood?
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CloaknDagger



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2009 10:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So here's the deal with sign in blood:

Advantages: You can use it on your opponent, or you can use it on yourself. You draw two cards, or they lose two life.

So firstly I asked myself, do I ever see myself playing utility with it and occasionally zapping my opponent? No. At least not in the dozen or so games I played against all sorts of various decks. If my opponent is at 2 life he's dead, I don't need this card to finish him off.

So, that whole utility factor is gone. It's literally: BB, -2 life, draw two.

Because it takes a card draw to get this, drawing sign in blood means I'm not drawing something else. When I draw the 2 cards, one is replacing the draw I used to draw sign in blood.

Since I dont' use it vs my opponent, I have to ask myself, is the 2 life, 2 mana, and turn tie-up worth the extra card? I don't think so. That's why I don't run it in this deck.

It's good in vamps though. They can take advantage of the utility of throwing it at your opponent.
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Deuce



Joined: 06 Oct 2007
Posts: 112

PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2009 11:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I seriously don't get that argument why no sign in blood.. One card certainly is worth the -2 life in this situation. And you dont take into account the thinning of the deck to make it more likely to draw something you need. Also with lifegain in general its -2 life becomes smallest of nips. Also you don't want to miss a land drop with this deck...
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CloaknDagger



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2009 12:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're right about needing lands one after the other. That alone will mean I'm going to test Sign in blood.

Update: I just won an 8 person-mini with this deck.

1st round vs a noob playing Black/Red vamps/blightning. He wasn't good.

2nd round vs DARKING (judge), and he was running a B/R control variant with some end game vamps, bituminous blast, blightning, etc. This seems like it would go 66/33 me, I didn't have too much trouble. It was a mid-range deck and 5 turn mind sludge just smashed him.

3rd round vs Mr_Doomz. Omg this guy got to the finals with the dopest rogue deck ever. His own creation. It abused land-cycling black creatures, fed the graveyard, and cast some crazy red/blue/black shit using the new black legendary land that taps for mana for black creatures in the graveyard. He rolled through a Jund deck to get to the finals so my hats off to him.

Unluckily for him Haunting Echoes wrecks that strategy ;D

And after the boarded in 3 desecrates, his super-land wasn't so super in the graveyard. Awesome deck though.

I 5th turn smashed face with mind sludge also.

So yeah, one fast deck, 2 very very mid-range decks. Yay!
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Vedrfolner



Joined: 04 Apr 2006
Posts: 2325

PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2009 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

-3 Desecrated Earth + 3 Sadistic Sacrament. A much more useful card against a variety of problematic cards/matchups.

I have a mbc deck myself which looks similar but it is a while since I played it so for all I know yours is already more optimal.

But I post it to maybe give you some ideas anyways:

// Deck file for Magic Workstation (http://www.magicworkstation.com)

// Lands
22 [ALA] Swamp (4)
3 [M10] Gargoyle Castle

// Creatures
4 [ZEN] Bloodghast
4 [ZEN] Gatekeeper of Malakir
2 [ZEN] Crypt Ripper

// Spells
2 [ZEN] Sorin Markov
4 [ALA] Infest
4 [M10] Sign in Blood
2 [M10] Doom Blade
4 [M10] Tendrils of Corruption
3 [ZEN] Mind Sludge
1 [M10] Haunting Echoes
3 [ZEN] Disfigure
2 [M10] Consume Spirit

// Sideboard
SB: 2 [M10] Doom Blade
SB: 1 [ZEN] Mind Sludge
SB: 1 [M10] Haunting Echoes
SB: 2 [ZEN] Malakir Bloodwitch
SB: 4 [M10] Duress
SB: 3 [ZEN] Sadistic Sacrament
SB: 2 [M10] Pithing Needle
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CloaknDagger



Joined: 13 Jul 2009
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2009 1:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have no problem running sadistic sacrament if I knew what it was good against. Honestly I don't like the idea of removing threats in the deck unless I've already raped their hand and following it up with a haunting echoes.

Deck update: Right now I'm testing -1 doom blade (becomes less relevant he more I play it, but 2 maindeck is still solid) -1 Diabolic tutor (found myself drawing multiples in too little a time, 3 is the right number I think) and - 1 blood tribute (cute trick but I never really won because of it, rarely did it help) for +3 sign in blood. I think, like tutor, 3 is the right number on this because you don't want too many, it just stuffs up your hand and doesn't actually give you threats unless you spend a turn or two cycling through stuff, but at the same time, besides durress and some early beats, turn 3 and 4 have very little for me to do, so the card draw is good and helps ensure land drops on turn 5/6 for the big boys. I'll keep you guys updated with the progress.

As for your decklist, I would recommend dropping the gargoyle castles. They disrupt your turn 3 gatekeeper, makes mind sludge that much worse, and lessens the lethality/life gain of tendrils. Just run 25 swamps. It's the right amount and has not disappointed yet.
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Vedrfolner



Joined: 04 Apr 2006
Posts: 2325

PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2009 1:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CloaknDagger wrote:
I have no problem running sadistic sacrament if I knew what it was good against.


Great Sable Stag

Cruel Ultimatum

control decks with few threats

combo decks (traps)

mirror (mind sludge, haunting echoes)

kicked (which is not unlikely) = as much GG as an echoes

the total hand/deck rape along with Duress, Mind Sludge and Haunting Echoes is amazing



I have been thinking of going all swamps as well, but I must say that Castle hasn't been that much of a Gatekeeper/Tendrils/Mind Sludge hindrance at all. It has happened, but I have won games with it as well - both instances being equally likely in my experience.

Besides, I think 2 Diabolic Tutors are the correct number. I wouldn't have more tutors than the cards I tutor for. It is always better to draw them. I want tutors as well.
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Burton911



Joined: 09 Jun 2007
Posts: 172

PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2009 1:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do you know that the Bloodghasts can't block, or do you play them as a wincondition?
I don't think that this card belongs to a control Deck, cause it doesn't support your game plan at all.
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Vedrfolner



Joined: 04 Apr 2006
Posts: 2325

PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2009 1:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Burton911 wrote:
Do you know that the Bloodghasts can't block, or do you play them as a wincondition?
I don't think that this card belongs to a control Deck, cause it doesn't support your game plan at all.


It does. They are amazing win conditions in the long game because they don't go away. They are actually not that good in aggro since their ability comes more to use the longer the game runs.

In the end, the opponent will have to spend resources to stop them, and that is even better than the 2 damage per turn.

But there have been some instances where I would really rather want a blocker... in those games my draw hasn't been good enough anyways. The thing with Bloodghast in MBC is that MBC does not really want to be all that passive. Therefore it fits.
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Ludz
Level 1 Judge


Joined: 29 Feb 2008
Posts: 89

PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2009 1:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
2nd round vs DARKING (judge)


Is the (judge) part there to prove that the players you're facing are good? I found it funny Smile

About the deck, I think Sign in Blood is really necessary. Except for Mind Sludge, you're not exactly full of Card Advantage, so all cascade cards will keep gaining small advantages over you. You need something to make up for that.

Do you have any troubles vs planeswalkers? Something like Elspeth could really just screw you over. Not to speak of Garruk from Jund decks.
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