Monday, July 4, 2011

CommanderCast S3E6: Evil Deeds

Posted by ANDY aka GHoooSTS
The most sinister of mono-coloured strategies is on the horizon, blotting out the sun and with it, the other colours. This week CommanderCast is examining mono-Black strategies in EDH in strategy with a heaping helping of mono-black Technology to follow it up. I have Donovan and Adam (returning from an adventure, and having gained SEVERAL levels) joining me in welcoming our guest Don, who is in Japan and plays pretty much only mono-B decks. It seemed sensible to have him contribute to the show.

If you are reading this, then you are no longer entitled to enter the Season 3 Contest. Put your sharpies down. We'll be doing a Circle of Judgment soon and should be announcing the winner in Episode 9 of the season. I would like to thank everyone who contributed as I personally received many larfs looking over these cards. The winner will be getting the hookup from my man Derfington, with the runner-ups getting a Stoneforge Mystic apiece.
Show notes and pertinent links below. Enjoy.

00:00 to 03:22: Intro: Introducing the podcast, your hosts, and a brief rundown of podcast news for the week.


03:30 to 14:17: Free-For-All Roundtable: Diversity vs Power: Some cards almost single-handed enable an entire archetype, and as a result becomes obnoxiously ubiquitous. Would you rather see some of these cards removed from the format to promote diversity, or do you think the damage they do to the archetypes losing them wouldn't be worth it?

14:28 to 35:17: Leaning on Your Group: If a group is established and comfortable, playing along certain lines or using some cards can be pretty abrasive, but can also promote change. Poison, land destruction, colour hosers, and other cards or deck types can warp metagames in new directions. Is this good or bad? How do you draw the line between trying to invoke change, and griefing for the sake of it? How can you approach this tastefully?


35:30 to 1:02:55: Mono-Black: The most evil, and definitely one of the most powerful colours in Commander is being examined. Mono-black decks have a lot of strengths some easily identifiable weaknesses, and maybe some angles you have never considered. Join us as we look to the darkness to satisfy our LUST FOR POWAR.


1:03:06 to 1:17:40: Mono-Black Technology: Following up the mono-black strategy, we're putting some solid mono-black cards in the scope for your pleasure.

Donovan's Picks:
Replay in Kind, Doomsday
Don's Picks:
Dark Ritual, Xaihou-Dun, the One-Eyed
Andy's Picks:
Nightmare Incursion, Words of Waste
Adam's Picks:
Void Maw, Mire's Toll

1:17:52 to 1:38:11: Secret Tech: Don Edition: Continuing up the mana curve, we find ourselves needing some two-mana favourites. Like the one-drops, these two-mana spells need to be pretty strong to be bothered with in EDH... but we've got some solid suggestions here.

Common: Befoul, Brainspoil, Grim Discovery
Uncommon: Withering Boon, Shrouded Lore, Fleshwrither
Rare: Imp's Mischief, Sudden Spoiling, Phage the Untouchable

1:38:22 to closing: Outtro.

  • Season 3 Contest (in case you somehow missed the other links or something)
  • Sir Derfington, Grand Imperial Archduke of Card Alterations and Boss Status Pimp Player
  • Donovan's Spirit of the Night deck, "Greatness at Any Cost" (warning: naming decks like metal albums is awesome)
  • General show contact/Andy: E-mail CommanderCast(at)gmail(dot)com / Twitter @CommanderCast
  • To Contact Donovan: E-mail donokun(at)gmail(dot)com / Twitter @d0su
  • To Contact Adam: E-Mail adnelso(at)gmail(dot)com / Twitter @magicfugu
  • To Contact Don: E-Mail the.don.kimball(at)gmail(dot)com


  1. I am disappoint, Commander Cast.

    You fanboy all over mono-black, and you don't even cover the best part?
    The commanders!

    Of all the mono-colors, black has, hands down, the widest variety of awesome choices.

    There's aggressive generals like Mirri and Maga.
    There's tribal generals like Anowon.
    There's good stuff generals like Sheoldred, Kokusho (if your group rolls like that, natch), Chainer, Kagemaro, Kiku and Geth.
    There's combo dudes like Balthor, Iname, and Xiahou Dun.
    There's weird build around me dudes like Endrek Sahr, Horobi, Infernal Kirin and Kuon.
    There's even Voltron dudes like Korlash, Ink-Eyes and Skithyryx.

    What mono-black loses in its various crippling weaknesses, it more than makes up for in its pimptastic commanders!

  2. I totally agree with you on the subject of generals however I purposely tried to steer the conversation away from discussion of generals. Due to the tutors, I think that mono-black demands building thematically around your general more so than most other color combinations. To dive into specifics of what directions a certain general takes a deck distracts things form the central themes and strengths of mono-black that I centered the discussion on.

    For example, I've played Korlash for two years and Skithiryx for about six months now. The two decks play completely differently. Korlash cannot burst out of the gate due to his potency being proportionately tied to your swamp count. While I may play cards like Dark Ritual and Mana Vault in Skithiryx, my Korlash deck is much more commited to consistently making my land drops. However, the engines and philosophies that enable both of these radically different strategies are surprisingly similar.

    To put it in different words, I focused my analysis on the physics of an engine, rather than specific cars. I trust that with this knowledge, people can judge for themselves which type of vehicle (read: general ) is best suited to what they demand of it.


  3. Fair enough.

    I am the kind of player who starts with the general and goes from there, and I have been guilty of best-case-scenario-gameplay as far as my general is concerned from time to time, so focusing on the deck as a whole is probably a better decision.

    It is after all "Commander Cast", not "Holy shit gais, check out my sweet Korlash deck Cast"