Took apart the OathStill deck to mess around with this monstrosity. I thought people might be interested to see my fingerpainting, and maybe later we can hang it up on the fridge. Look what I can do!

What does winning with this deck look like? Honestly, there are a lot of games where you just get a couple taxing effects down against a blue deck, hit a waste effect, then drop Excavator when they are tapped down and can't counter and the game just ends with you chipping away for 2 or 4 every turn, and they just can never get out from underneath.

What does losing look like? Usually the opponent gets ahead in cards either by resolving drawing spells, or insane Ballista 3 for 1s against us.

This deck is reasonable against the current field, offering a good game against both Mentor and Shops, with a spacious SB and lots of opportunity to tailor the build against a given metagame. It functions like a fish deck in that way, perhaps a little better than most since it attacks along what's maybe a more fundamental axis than most, attacking the mana base, which I suspect, gives it wider play against more decks than the average fish deck.

Surprisingly good cards: Oath of Nissa (helps assemble the Ramunap/Wasteland combo) Vryn Wingmare (Helps reach critical mass of taxing effects) Phyrexian Revoker (Naaa nevermind, this isn't surprising. This card is great. Does the job of Null Rod, but better because it hits and stops Planeswalkers without hitting cards in your own deck.)

Surprisingly bad cards: Big Thalia. (By turn 3 it's slow. Turn 2 its just ok. Though its stayed in so far because on top of the Ramunap and Wasteland this just crushes both Mentor and Shops, making even fetchlands easily wastable. Also, the body combines with little Thalia to make an impervious first striking wall against Eldrazi decks.)

Anyways... for your viewing (and brewing) pleasure.

last edited by Brass Man

I really like where this deck is going.

When I tried to build it, it added up to a bit less than 60 cards so you may have forgotten something in the list.

I notice that the only 2 eldrazi you have are the smashers. Did you mean to play more of them?

Lastly, how much work is black doing for you compared to being two color with more basics?

If powerless Eldrazi is called Jacodrazi, I want this to be called Junkodrazi.

I have nothing of value to add.

@walking.dude Sorry about that. I've updated the above list. The missing cards were 1 Spirit of the Lab, 1 Wingmare, and the Sol Ring... My excuse is that I've been changing the list several times a day, and was typing in a busy livingroom in lieu of interacting with my inlaws... but the actual reason is that I can be kind of an idiot.

As for Eldrazis (which sounds more and more like a pizza topping), the Smashers are great in this deck. Originally I had 4 TKS, then dropped them because they made Swords way too good against us. I changed them to Smashers, to hurt Swords.
I should say that, nearly every time this deck wins, it does so in a very unvintagelike way. I resolve a spell and attack, then calculate that the other deck has 2, 1, or 0 outs. I pass the turn. They draw a card and concede. The two cards that most often cause that to happen are Smasher and Excavator, with Wingmare a close third. To answer your question, I have no doubt that there are 3 or 4 Smasher versions of this deck that are good or even better given certain metagames. I would imagine Smasher is better against Shops, but I can't say that with certainty. If I knew I was playing against a field of Shops, I would guestimate 3 Smashers, 1 mainboard Ghostquarter, 1 mainboard Needle, cut two Spirits and a Wingmare?

Black does a lot of work believe it or not. It makes the five black spells (Tutor and the 4 Shamans) very live... specially against Mentor. Shamans are good against shops without any black at all, cause you just eat their lands and their creatures to try to win the race. But against Mentor, black gives you a whole other dimension, and really helps you beat a resolved Mentor that is making tokens.
The nature of those games is that Mentor is one of their very best draws. It is the only thing that gets through all the taxing effects unscathed (baby Jace aside... but more on that later.) But the taxing effects make the square number effect of Mentor much much flatter. With two taxing effects out, this deck basically turns Mentor into a Pyromancer. So the problem isn't so much that Monks run you out of town in two turns, but that they choke the board and make attacking impossible. The solutions to that are 2 Smashers, 3 Wingmares, and 4 Deathrites using the black ability. That puts Mentor in a tough spot. If they pay 3 to play preordain, they make a token and maybe get an attack in, but they give you ammo to eat a sorcery and hurt them. They get kinda finessed either way if you have access to Deathrite with black.
The other way black helps is that it can completely checks their JVP. Mostly the Revokers are used to check their walkers, but this opens up lines where you can use Revoker on a Mox, or even do some calculation and speculate with Revoker, naming something that you haven't even seen, just to cut them off from outs... say, leave the Deathrite up for an already flipped JVP, play Revoker naming Dack, into a board with a Taxing effect and say go. How are they getting out of this? We have 4 per turn now and very few outs. I think we are topdecking to Swords only at this point... and if it doesn't get played next turn and you topdeck any creature (which is always going to be near 40%... an little higher because of combos with Oath of Nissa) then they are drawing very slim at that point.
Lastly, the Tutor is awesome. The ability to nab Lotus, Trinesphere and Stripmine is backbreaking. A common line goes something like... turn 1 taxing effect. Turn two small Thalia, Deathrite. Turn three Tutor (off of the Deathrite) and Waste. Turn four Strip and land Excavator (often I will actually Strip and sandbag the Excavator here, since you want to play it on the turn you get the Strip or Waste back if you can... so playing a second taxing effect behind the Strip is actually better most times.)

I love that you are trying to build and test. Sorry again about the list errors. I hope you test, and I'd love to hear your feedback. What I'm trying to do is build 1 list that hates Mentor, and another that hates Shops, and then get some merging of those two so that I can maybe have 5 subtly different builds that create a range that you could select from based on what ratio of Mentor to Shops you would see at a given tourney.

last edited by Topical_Island

@thecravenone THANK YOU! I was calling it GuuB Drazi... pronounced GOOB... (double u... get it?)

Yours is way way better.


Ok spirit wingmare and sol ring. I wasn't to far off, for testing I had filled the 3 missing spots with wingmare, sphere, and vampiric tutor. Also I cut a big Thalia for a manglehorn.

I played a few games in the tournament practice room against unsuspecting opponents. This deck has a lot of taxing. I liked the sphere as a 'last card you play before opp concedes" kind of card. I might want to go to 4 wingmares to maximize turn 1 Thalia / thorn into turn 2 wingmare.

I didn't end up playing shops so I never had game where I needed to cast smashers so I appreciate your explanation of what they are for.

I think I need to play more games before making changes, but just looking at the list and playing some games vs misc blue decks two cards occurred to me.

Leonin artbter and a maindeck ghost quarter or two. LA is kind of a pain against any fetch deck even without the GQ interaction and the GQs would boost the power of rampup excavator by giving you 7 LD lands.

The other card the occurred to me, and this may be too cute, would be renegade rallier as a one or two of. Play it and get back a Thalia or thorn that was countered, or just play it to get a wasteland back. Probably not good enough as a single use effect though. In a deck with displacers this would let you reuse wastelands, but that's a lot of work for what the excavator does by itself. So this probably wouldn't be worth it.

@walking.dude I'm so happy you took it for a spin. How did it go?

Manglehorn has been in and out for me. I basically stuck it in the SB for Shops/Paradoxical, but I'm not at all sure that's right. I don't like Big Thalia that much, so if you are tinkering I reckon that's a fine place to start.

Another thread on here reminded me of Gaddok Teeg. That interests me because I've lost some game to Cruise and Dig being able to delve out of the taxing. I'm not sold on Rallier, but I'm a test first and ask questions later sort of fellow. Arbiter is probably genius. I was just looking at Aven Mindcensor, and Arbiter is probably just better. It's cheeper, sturdier against Ballista in game 1, and probably less symetrical in our favor since we are lighter on fetchables and naturally have an mana advantage over a lot of decks. I wonder if Arbiter should be 1 of the Spirits?


Since last post, I played for about 5-6 matches in tournament practice. Played vs blue every time, but a few different varieties. Some combo, a pyromancer deck, a couple of builds that played Jace. No one resolved a mentor, which likely means no one played it, but maybe I just got lucky against the mentor decks I played. I also didn't play against shops or dredge. I can report that this deck really beat the tar out of miscellaneous blue decks.

Deck felt very good. Several times though I was short on colored mana and I lost a game to turn 2 blood moon. Another game they striped my only color source after I played a thorn and a sphere and we both spent a lot of turns playing draw go before I was lucky enough to draw a smasher before they drew an out. I think it's definitely worth thinking about how to fit at least one basic plains.

The pyromancer decks played a lot of basics and leonin artbiter would have been pretty good there compared to waste.

I did win a game via the DRS black ability so I see what you mean there.

Many of the games I lost were due to, force the first tax effect, play time walk to get ahead on land drops. Not sure there is anything to be done about that though.

The manglehorn blew up a bunch of moxes and was usually useful when I drew it, but was seldom great.

The excavator drew concessions when I cast it with a few tax effects allready on the board, but as the games played out I never played it in preference to a tax effect and never felt safe playing it before I had delployed all my tax effects. Based on that I think I might want to figure out how to go to 4 wingmares.

TLDR: I want to figure out how to fit plains and wingmare number 4

@walking.dude I'll do come up with something today... I also came up with a version last night that is totally insane. I gotta test it out before I make a fool of myself, but maybe more on that later. Did you win more than you lost?

I think maybe cut a Spirit, cut a Big Thalia, and play another Oath of Nissa and another Wingmare? That will find taxers much more often.

last edited by Topical_Island

This list is awesome. Per the above discussion, Teeg and Arbiter might be good additions. Oath of Nissa is cool, but it feels like Misstep bait - maybe something like Sylvan Library instead? (Sorry if this has been covered, I kinda skimmed the posts cause I'm a bad forum user.) I'm also wondering if Qasali Pridemage and/or Knight of the Reliquary would be more impactful than Reality Smasher.

On that note, I'd vote for cutting the Eldrazi entirely and adamantly calling your deck Abzan to troll the Vintage community.

@Stuart Yeah, you are not wrong about Misstep (should be restricted). But It actually works out ok. Basically, would this thing run a 1cc Green sorcery, that said, do 2 damage to opponent and they discard a card of their choice...? Maybe.

Either way you get the picture. This deck presses the life total and mana of blue decks. So Misstep resolving against us isn't really the end of the world. We can often make that life matter by the end. It reminds me of when Misstep was legal in Legacy, one of the best decks against it was burn. Because who cares if they Misstep the Bolt aimed at them. They trade a card to gain 1 life? That's pretty bad. Same principle here.

I also did have Sylvan in the original build, since that card is friggin great. It wasn't that good though here. If you cast it first in a sequence, it's ok. But taxing effects are way better against most opponents, so you really only cast it why you can't cast a Thalia or a Thorn, which is vanishingly rare. When you do land it, it's pretty good, but running 4 Ancient Tombs in a deck with Sylvan really limits your ability to take extra cards. It ends up being a costly kind of repeating brainstorm effect, in a deck that has only 5 shufflers. Oath resolving is actually, often better than Sylvan I found, because there are a lot of non-stacking effects in this deck, and OoN lets you clear out some of the chaff and get to the next Wasteland, Taxing effect, or utility creature that you really need... eg. Revoker or Smasher (the utility of Smasher being that you kill your opponent's face).

Where Misstep (please restrict this) really can hurt is against Deathrite. Again, it's not the end of the world, but it sucks. As a result, I have learned to always drop a taxing effect before a Deathrite when given the choice. Misstep is just bad against a Thalia and Thorn, because often if they want to hold it up, they have to do nothing on their turn, then still pay mana and life for it once Thalia is down.

last edited by Topical_Island

What makes this not a worse White Eldrazi deck?

I see a bunch of white cards that aren't good enough for White Eldrazi to play and a worse mana base (which I didn't think was possible).

Splashing black solely for Demonic Tutor in a deck with 9 spheres is bizarre. Seems like you really wanted to call the deck Abzan.

Ramunap Excavator is a compelling reason to look at GW, but start with GW and Horizon Canopy.

last edited by wappla

@wappla That's the response that I was waiting for! Welcome to the party, and great question. The thing that would make this better than White Eldrazi, is winning more than white Eldrazi against the range of the field. Failing that, this would be certainly worse than White Eldrazi. That is exactly the sort of problem we are working on here. If you want to know about the advantages and disadvantages I've discovered compared to that archetype, I'd love to discuss them. If you want to pitch in on the problem solving, we are all ears.

@walking-dude thoughts on that last land slot... yeah, the deck feels just a touch short on white mana.

I looked at: Cavern of Souls - It feels like Cavern should suck in this deck, and that's because it does.

Karakas - that showed some promise, but a lot of the time it is just a non-basic plains. It creates a ton of sweet corner case value against JVP, protecting Thalias from Swords, and I suppose against Oath as well though I didn't test that in particular.

Brushland - This was good. The way I test is to just play face up vs the test deck. I just put the card I want to test on top of the deck to begin and then play out the first several turns until one deck gets behind. From there you can just estimate the outs and the odds for the other deck to get out of it, and start adding up percentages. Using this method, Brushland produced the best results in limited, cursory testing. It just... you know, casts your spells.

Another fetchland - (I used Windswept Heath) This produced good results too, and for the same reasons. Turns out casting your stuff is really a lot better than not bing able to cast it. The trade off here is that it is slightly worse synergy with Smasher and slightly better with Deathrite in comparison to Brushland. The life loss is about the same as Brushland, believe it or not.

(took out 1 big thalia to do all this... also hit my first ever dry Oath of Nissa in about 60 games of testing so far. Oath into Thorn, Lotus, Thorn... boo)

This Canopy suggestion seems good, so that's getting tested next. Feels like that is gonna hurt the life total a lot, but I do love drawing cards. You can also continue to smuggle extra draws under a Spirit on opponent's turn? Ok, this seems decent.

last edited by Topical_Island

I literally just asked you what the advantages were. You said, "Well it wins more." Says you. I'll believe it when I see it.

Why are you splashing for exactly one black card?

Why aren't you playing Horizon Canopy alongside Excavator?

Why are you playing Demonic Tutor alongside nine sphere effects?

Why are you playing so many marginal X/1s when Workshops has long been Hatebears and Eldrazi's worst matchup?

Why are you playing Deathrite Shaman over moxen?

last edited by wappla

I don't believe he was saying "it wins more", I believe he was saying "if it won more it would be better ... but I don't know if it wins more or not, so I don't know if it's better ... I want to improve the deck, so I put it on TMD". That seems pretty reasonable to me.

last edited by Brass Man

I like, i'm not 'a bunch of creatures' plan so i have more removals and less creatures. Similar axis.

I don't think you really want Demonic Tutor? You have so many 4-ofs that Nissa's is functioning very similarly a portion of the time?

And yea, i believe you for sure want Teeg. Maybe you don't need Demonic as much as Teeg, but i could see shaving 1 Ramunap. We do not need his ability in multiples, barring tons of 1-for-1 removal, but you just have so many threats that Swords is surely going to be needed to be pressed on other guys you can bait with.

@wappla Sweet, great questions.

  1. I'm not really splashing black for one card, its really for 5 cards - the 4 Deathrites and the Tutor. (as well as providing some SB options... I tested Extirpate and Yixlid Jailor today... but that's very corner case.) I have found the Tutor to be very useful and the Deathrite black ability to be quite important against Mentor, since they almost all use JVP or Snappy to recur important cards, like broken blue cards, and especially Swords, which is how they beat normal Eldrazi decks... just storm of Swords and sit back and read a JRR Martin novel while Eldrazi runs out of threats and bricks out on lands.

  2. I simply haven't tested it yet. Seems like a good idea. Wanna test it for us?

  3. Because it gets Trinisphere and more than that, it gets Stripmine. Playing it, even for 5 or 6 mana, can be game over a lot. This deck makes a lot of mana, so its not that much of a problem, and I've found that with so many Excavators running around, the chance you topdeck this and get to play Strip that very turn can reduce an opponent's outs to zero quite often.

  4. Because Mentor is a much larger % of the field and this is a metagame deck. As I said before, we are kinda looking for the northwest passage with this deck. We're not sure it exists, but we would like to find something with a plus win rate against both Shops and Mentor. I started with the, kill Mentor build since that is more common right now. I want to also find a, kill Shops build, and then merge the two into something that has a plus win rate against both. I'm assuming that anti-shops build involves at least 1 mainboard Manglehorn, and probably some Null effect?Ideally, you could have several set ups, and then you could tailor the particular main and side boards cards to a given field, allowing you to use a prediction of the ratio of Mentor to Shops decks to determine which of several set ups you run.

  5. Because Deathrite ramps, does damage, and performs a control function as well, so we are trading raw explosiveness for mid to late game finish, and a better chance at topdecking something that is live. We have basically no draw engine at all. So I felt that playing cards that are more live in more situations might be correct. It is true that after you have a couple taxing effects down, drawing a Mox is almost never better than drawing a Deathrite, and almost always worse... since neither is doing anything the turn they come down, and after that, the Deathrite just does much more. It's also true that you almost always get a better first turn from a Mox, rather than a Deathrite... but that's also with on color Moxen too. Is this Mox to Deathrite ratio correct? I have no clue. Should we cut a Shaman to run Mox Ruby? Seems plausible to me. It would probably make Thalia and Thorn come down quicker. Wanna test that?
    (PS. Here is Math on that. Looking at Thorn, there are 10 cards that currently let us cast that on turn 1 (Tomb x 4, Lotus, Petal, 3 Moxen, and lets throw in Sol Ring) SO... the odds of drawing Thorns and 1 of these cards is about 26%... and it's slightly lower in terms of actually casting this, the Moxen, Petal, and Ring all require an additional mana source... so lets just guestimate 25% and know we are slightly high. Adding 1 Mox by removing a Deathrite, changes the original number to 28%... so what are we at now? 26 or 27% ish... We also have Thalia, and Trinisphere as taxing effects. The current chances to cast those turn 1 are 11% and around 1% respectively. If adding a Mox bumps each of those numbers up between 1 and 2%, then adding a Mox at the price of a Shaman, got us a turn 1 taxing effect something like 4-5% more often... so that's, you know, not nothing. But it's marginal. It's a close choice for sure... what do you think?
    PPS. We forgot Wingmare, but since the only way to cast Wingmare turn 1 is off, Lotus, and Petal plus Tomb, or 2x Mox effects and a land, or 3x Mox effects with a white source somewhere in there... the addition of a single mox can never add more than even a fraction of a % to the likelyhood of casting a turn 1 Wingmare since so many running cards are needed, so I just forgot about it... but if you want to throw an extra .4% on top, be my guest.)

@Sovarius You might be right on Teeg. I had a Treasure Cruise resolved on me again today through 4 taxing effects (even though we won that one). I'm really not sure though. This seems very corner to me. FoW is not good against this deck. 2 for 1ing yourself to stop Taxing effects is almost as bad as letting them resolve most of the time. Unless the blue deck is holding really broken draw spells (Ancestral), I've found FoW to be no worse than a little annoying against us. I feel like Leonin Arbiter might be better than Teeg in this slot? Dunno. You may also be just stone cold correct about this though. Teeg is way better against Paradoxical, which I have just assumed is a great matchup for us and haven't really been worrying about yet? Thoughts?

last edited by Topical_Island

I would argue the reason you feel the need for so many anti-blue cards is the lack of Cavern, lack of ability to play Thorn or Thalia on turn one (because you're missing moxen and crypt), and the tempo blowouts of having DRS misstepped or the DT target Forced.

White Eldrazi just solves all these problems so much more efficiently. Instead of relying on a third color and a turning on 4 otherwise dead blue cards to hate out JVP, it just plays Karakas. The value over replacement of Karakas compared to Scrubland is tremendous.

Instead of packing so much redundant blue hate (Wingmare, Thorn, Thalia, Thalia, and Spirit) it plays some more broadly powerful cards instead (Displacer, Smasher, TKS) and uses Cavern to make sure the important hatebears it does have resolve.

You are spending a lot of spell slots to solve problems White Eldrazi addresses with its mana base.

@topical_island said in GWBEldrazi (Homebrew):

@Sovarius You might be right on Teeg. I had a Treasure Cruise resolved on me again today through 4 taxing effects (even though we won that one). I'm really not sure though. This seems very corner to me. FoW is not good against this deck. 2 for 1ing yourself to stop Taxing effects is almost as bad as letting them resolve most of the time. Unless the blue deck is holding really broken draw spells (Ancestral), I've found FoW to be no worse than a little annoying against us. I feel like Leonin Arbiter might be better than Teeg in this slot? Dunno. You may also be just stone cold correct about this though. Teeg is way better against Paradoxical, which I have just assumed is a great matchup for us and haven't really been worrying about yet? Thoughts?

No, i strictly like Teeg in your deck against the big delve/Force/Gush/Jace blue crap. Against something like Paradoxical you have the Spheres/Thalia/Wingmare, Revoker, and Spirit of the Lab. If you don't need Teeg to stop Force/Jace/Delve then you just don't need Teeg in your deck.
I do not have a single sphere/tax or revoker against them, but i have Chains which is like a Spirit of the Lab from your deck. Also the Thoughtseizes, but eh. In place of your spheres, i have 5 cards that can destroy artifacts.

This may be a little silly, but can I suggest a naming convention for this type of deck. I understand the inclination to call it "X Eldrazi", but that is not as helpful with respect to description as I would have hoped. When I looked at this thread for the first time, with a fair amount of interest, I immediately looked at the creatures and was confused. I left, and then later, still somewhat interested in the deck, came back and looked at the lands, and found the thing, that I believe makes aggro/prison decks viable in current vintage 4x Ancient tomb. I think this is the thing that truly distinguished this kind of deck from previous iterations of "hatebears" and other aggro style decks. I would like to suggest that the naming convention be altered to include the Ancient tomb, and omit the Eldrazi bit.

As for the actual stategy of this deck. I think that the inclusion of ancient tomb and some larger creatures is the right direction for any sort of "hate" deck in the modern era of vintage, but I would ask, how has you testing been against walking ballista decks, and more traditional White Eldrazi decks. It seems to me that while this probably is improved in those matchups compared to previous iterations of hatebears, it still seems like the underdog, not because of the prison aspects of those decks, but just because their critters outsize yours pretty handily. Any thoughts to that particular matchup?

last edited by garbageaggro
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