Monday, April 11, 2011

CommanderCast S2E9: GIANT SHARK

Posted by ANDY aka GHoooSTS
This week on CommanderCast Andy is BRINGING THE INFORMATIONS with Adam and Donovan. Providing us with fierce backup we have Bennie Smith, who started writing about Magic like a week before the Big Bang or something. This week he has decided to grace our podcast with his presence. To investigate Bennie's body of work, one need go no further than, where his long history of authorship is chronicled (they're still translating some of the stuff he wrote on animal skins with his own blood... this is metal). He is the best advocate for Commander as a format on one of Magic's biggest websites, and that's a pretty big deal.

Show notes and pertinent links below. Enjoy.

00:00 to 04:27: Intro: We are introducing ourselves, providing a bit of a preview to the Mid-Week Update, and a reminder about the contest.

04:35 to 14:49: Community: Free-For-All Roundtable: Hermit Druid: Recently there's been some debate on the bannability of Hermit Druid. As is our up-to-the-second nature at CommanderCast, we're debating the topic. Carlos will probably strangle me for not putting him on this one but whatever, I don't need air to live.


15:00 to 30:21Community: Sideboards: As per Bennie's recent article, this week we're looking at the optional Sideboard rule in Commander. The ten-card sideboard has been an optional rule on the books for a long time, but it's super rare to see in play. So what's the deal? We're giving a general discussion on the topic; why use sideboards, what is their purpose, and how do they change your games?

30:34 to 31:53: Deckbuilding Challenge: Phase 3: We've got our number of colours and $40 limit. Now, we're picking our colours. Scope the upper-left corner for our poll. What will Carlos do? The suspense is making me vomit!

32:06 to 33:38: Community Spotlight: BelcherSucks: This is a site run by my man John, who produces some quality material on Commander. He updates about once a month. Topics are generally awesome, and the articles are very high-content. It deserves a look. Please follow the link.


33:51 to 52:23: Alt. Format Strategy: Star: Star is an interesting five-person format that when applied to EDH, has some significant ramifications in terms of what strategies are improved, which become worse, and how you are going to apply politics to the game. If you have any interest following this segment please give Star a try, it might be the format for you. This is just an introduction, 

52:30 to 1:12:06: Strategy: 'That Guy' Status: We've all read complaints about 'That Guy' in EDH; the guy who wins too many games, the guy whose decks are all disproportionately expensive, the guy who talks like he's the greatest thing to happen to Magic since Chaos Orb. When you are 'That Guy', what are the strategy ramifications? How can you use it to your advantage? How do you pass on the 'That Guy' belt if you need to lose it?
1:12:18 to 1:26:20: Entourage: Chisei, Heart of Oceans: The Ib Halfheart nation was born with our last Technology segment. Given it's wild success, it only seemed to make sense to do another one. We have a real turd this week with Chisei, Heart of Oceans. Can we build a worthwhile skeleton around this thing? Listen and find out.

Adam's Picks: Mesmeric Trance, Dreams of the Dead (addendum Glamerdye)
Andy's Picks: Paradox Haze, Glacial Chasm
Donovan's Picks: Decree of Silence, Glen Elendra Archmage
Bennie's Picks: Snowfall, Strata Scythe 

If you want more Entourages, please send us in some more sub-par Generals, we'd love to see what else we can pull off!


1:26:34 to 1:49:01: Technology: Bad Cards We Love: Everyone has pet cards. sometimes these are not ideal pets, but we love them despite their flaws, like a dog that refuses to do anything you ask it to do, or a bird that won't stop pooping on your head (less likely). These cards are the MtG equivalent.

Bennie's Picks: Ice Cauldron, Hellcarver Demon
Andy's Picks: Menacing Ogre, Bullwhip
Adam's Picks: Stone Idol Trap, Overtaker
Donovan's Picks: Demonic Consultation, Giant Shark


1:49:16 to closing: Outtro.

  • General show contact/E-Mail Andy: CommanderCast(at)gmail(dot)com
  • To E-Mail Adam: adnelso(at)gmail(dot)com
  • To E-Mail Donovan: donokun(at)gmail(dot)com 
  • To E-Mail Bennie: starcitygeezer(at)gmail(dot)com
  • To Tweet Andy: (at)CommanderCast on Twitter


  1. I just worte a long comment but my browser had an error. So here my short summary again:

    Loved your show as allways. But there is one smal thing I recognised.

    I believe you latest two casts had too few argumentation from a casual side on both the Hermit Druid and the Sideboard matter.
    (I know that you are the casual Guy at heart Andy, and the host. So you did actually moderate a little bit in that direction.) But there was no strong argument there for the casual side...
    I would love to hear more actually arguing instead of mutual agreement on the matter.

    Especially concerning sideboards I have to agree with you Andy that it makes the game very uncasual for various reasons. Have you ever considered that "offensive" players might sideboard, against your sideboard strategy? or even wreck you more by using a sideboard?
    It just makes everything even more competetive and drives more casual players away from EDH than it helps the format.
    Also the barrier of entry is much higher now, you not only have to built a 100 card deck but also anticipate a counter strategy.

    I would love to represent the "Casual Inquisition's" case the next time the round table meets.

    Yours Dominik S.

  2. Not only do I believe Hermit Druid is unfairly overpowered, but it makes for the least fun games of EDH I have ever seen.

    Hey everyone, this guy is playing a HD deck. Everyone tutor up your Paths and other various 2cc answers, otherwise this game is over by turn 3. Even if someone does manage to stop him, it ends up being a three-player game with one other player sitting there with a mostly neutered deck, assuming he didn't actually suicide with the HD.

    Honestly, Gifts Ungiven is a fair comparison.. but how about comparing it to Emrakul? Emrakul forces the game to evolve around him when he's in play. Hermit Druid forces the game to revolve around him when he's IN SOMEBODY'S DECK. So lame. So un-fun.

  3. How exactly does the combo work anyways?

  4. With no basic lands, activate Hermit Druid and mill your deck. You automatically get Narcomoeba, maybe bring back a Fatestitcher or Reassembling Skeleton, then flashback Dread Return. Return gets you Necrotic Ooze and you can go infinite in a number of ways from there. Some decks run the Saffi Eriksdotter + Crypt Champion "Project X" combo instead of Ooze.

  5. You could even Dread Return a Sun Titan, getting back Saffi Eriksdotter. Assuming you dredged Anger, you attack with Sun Titan, getting back Altar of Dementia or some other sac outlet. Proceed to go infinite mid-combat by sacrificing Saffi to protect Sun Titan, then sacrificing Sun Titan to the outlet. When Titan re-enters the battlefield, get back Saffi and repeat.

    You could even make it a Reveillark combo if you really wanted to. Once you've dredged your deck, the combo win doesn't matter.

  6. Sounds like a pretty resilient combo.

  7. Hermit Druid is a tricky card.

    Unlike, oh say, Metalworker that is an enabler, Druid tends to be victory in and of itself.

    I don't think it should be banned for two reasons.
    One, it isn't an insurmountable victory. It can be hated against, it can be meta'd against, the other 3+ guys at the table can take turns pushing the Druid player down the stairs before he or she takes the hint.
    Second, there are fair applications. Much the same with many banned cards. One of my builds I pulled together on workstation is a mono-black Vampire tribal deck (Anowon keeping it real in Romania). A favorite card of mine in the deck is Painter's Servant which I use to turn on Vampire Nocturnus and Repentant Vampire.
    Hardly the "whoops you just milled your whole deck" or "would you look at that, Iona just fucked your whole face" that certain unsavory types use the card for.

    How adamant Adam was about his secret tech cards being bad was incredibly hilarious to me.

  8. I just want to mention that I randomly watched "Mega Shark versus Giant Octopus" today. It's a film which seems like it was made in 1991, but was actually made in 2009. Anyways, there's one scene in which the Mega Shark lunges out of the water and eats a passenger plane and for some reason I couldn't help thinking of Giant Shark and its terrible "blood in the water" ability.

    Oh man... I just realised I could totally build an AWESOME theme deck around this movie...

    Anyways, I recommend you download it from somewhere. Along with its sequels "Mega Shark versus Crocosaurus" and "Mega Python vs. Gatoroid". Apparently we can expect to be treated to "Pirahnaconda" sometime in 2012. Sweeet...

  9. I feel like I have to mention Sharktopus now. Even Lovecraft couldn't imagine something so terrifying.

  10. Nice. And check this out. Actual footage of Mega Shark eating a plane:

  11. I see your footage and raise you this chart calculating how Mega Shark makes such a jump

  12. Mega shark also has impeccable aim and depth perception to be able to annihilate the plane at the zenith of its leap.

    The building blocks:

    Super Size:

    Burst of Super Speed:

    Helpless flying machine:

    A bloodthirsty drive to kill:

    We can make it happen.

  13. We have the technology.
    We can rebuild him.

    No wait...

  14. Most entertaining cast yet, by far. It was great hearing Bennie on the show, he makes a really good guest. I also think the "bad cards we love" segment is amazing. The "secret tech" bits are cool but the bad cards bit is way more fun and possibly more informative (just look what you guys did to Ib Halfheart). I have been trying to bust out my Skull of Orm since discovering this format but I just haven't found the way yet (and no, don't bring up Zur the boring asshole).

    Anyway, I'll be going into exile soon (being banished from the Land of Rohan) but while in exile I will most certainly give this sweet episode a second listen, something no other podcast has yet had the privilege of experiencing. That's right, in mother Russia, the podcast experiences the listener!

    Keep on given 'er, Giant Shark!