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Magical Darwinism 1.1 - Rodney Hines (2/24/2012)

Hi guys and gals and those who are undecided! Welcome back to my little slice of perfection in an article....tribute. (Any Tenacious D fans?) Just a quick re-intro to who I am, what I'm doing, and why I'm doing it. I'm Rodney. I'm taking a preconstructed deck and trying to evolve it over time into something that's not completely embarrassing to play, is enjoyable to play, and is budget friendly. I started writing this article and have continued into episode 2 because, very simply, this is the best way I know to pay tribute to the original Jay Moldenhauer-Salazar and his brilliant concept for a column – by blatantly ripping it off! When we left off, I had made a few changes to the original list. So without further ado...my decklist version 1.1


Lands
13 Forest
Forest
ForestSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add G to your mana pool.

11 Swamp
Swamp
SwampSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add B to your mana pool.


Creatures
2 Ambush Viper
Ambush Viper
Ambush ViperSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Snake
Rarity:
C
Number:
169
Artist:
Alan Pollack
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flash (You may cast this spell any time you could cast an instant.) Deathtouch (Any amount of damage this deals to a creature is enough to destroy it.)

1 Brain Weevil
Brain Weevil
Brain WeevilSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Insect
Rarity:
C
Number:
91
Artist:
Anthony Jones
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Intimidate (This creature can't be blocked except by artifact creatures and/or creatures that share a color with it.) Sacrifice Brain Weevil: Target player discards two cards. Activate this ability only any time you could cast a sorcery.

1 Devouring Swarm
Devouring Swarm
Devouring SwarmSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Insect
Rarity:
C
Number:
91
Artist:
Wayne England
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying Sacrifice a creature: Devouring Swarm gets +1/+1 until end of turn.

2 RGlzY2lwbGUgb2YgGriselbrand
Griselbrand
GriselbrandSet: Avacyn Restored
Cost:
8
Color:
Black
Type:
Legendary Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
M
Number:
106
Artist:
Igor Kieryluk
Power:
7
Toughness:
7
Text:
Flying, lifelink Pay 7 life: Draw seven cards.

2 Festerhide Boar
Festerhide Boar
Festerhide BoarSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Boar
Rarity:
C
Number:
179
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Trample Morbid — Festerhide Boar enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters on it if a creature died this turn.

2 Hollowhenge Scavenger
Hollowhenge Scavenger
Hollowhenge ScavengerSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
U
Number:
188
Artist:
Slawomir Maniak
Power:
4
Toughness:
5
Text:
Morbid — When Hollowhenge Scavenger enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, you gain 5 life.
s
2 Lumberknot
Lumberknot
LumberknotSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Treefolk
Rarity:
U
Number:
191
Artist:
Jason A. Engle
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Hexproof (This creature can't be the target of spells or abilities your opponents control.) Whenever a creature dies, put a +1/+1 counter on Lumberknot.

2 Morkrut Banshee
Morkrut Banshee
Morkrut BansheeSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
U
Number:
110
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Morbid — When Morkrut Banshee enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, target creature gets -4/-4 until end of turn.

2 Reassembling Skeleton
Reassembling Skeleton
Reassembling SkeletonSet: Magic 2011
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Skeleton Warrior
Rarity:
U
Number:
112
Artist:
Austin Hsu
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
{1}{B}: Return Reassembling Skeleton from your graveyard to the battlefield tapped.

1 Skirsdag High Priest
Skirsdag High Priest
Skirsdag High PriestSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Cleric
Rarity:
R
Number:
117
Artist:
Jason A. Engle
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Morbid — {T}, Tap two untapped creatures you control: Put a 5/5 black Demon creature token with flying onto the battlefield. Activate this ability only if a creature died this turn.

1 Somberwald Spider
Somberwald Spider
Somberwald SpiderSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spider
Rarity:
C
Number:
202
Artist:
Volkan Baga
Power:
2
Toughness:
4
Text:
Reach (This creature can block creatures with flying.) Morbid — Somberwald Spider enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters on it if a creature died this turn.

1 Typhoid Rats
Typhoid Rats
Typhoid RatsSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat
Rarity:
C
Number:
120
Artist:
Kev Walker
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Deathtouch (Any amount of damage this deals to a creature is enough to destroy it.)

2 Woodland Sleuth
Woodland Sleuth
Woodland SleuthSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
210
Artist:
Tomasz Jedruszek
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
Morbid — When Woodland Sleuth enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, return a creature card at random from your graveyard to your hand.


Artifacts
1 Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail HauberkSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
U
Number:
221
Artist:
Jason Felix
Text:
Equipped creature gets +4/+2. Equip—Sacrifice a creature.


Enchantments
2 Dead Weight
Dead Weight
Dead WeightSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature gets -2/-2.


Instants
3 Altar's Reap
Altar's Reap
Altar's ReapSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Text:
As an additional cost to cast Altar's Reap, sacrifice a creature. Draw two cards.

3 Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Doom BladeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
93
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Destroy target nonblack creature.

1 Naturalize
Naturalize
NaturalizeSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
275
Artist:
Ron Spears
Text:
Destroy target artifact or enchantment.


Sorceries
2 Caravan Vigil
Caravan Vigil
Caravan VigilSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
173
Artist:
Drew Baker
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card, reveal it, put it into your hand, then shuffle your library. Morbid — You may put that card onto the battlefield instead of putting it into your hand if a creature died this turn.

1 Make a Wish
Make a Wish
Make a WishSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
192
Artist:
Howard Lyon
Text:
Return two cards at random from your graveyard to your hand.

2 Rampant Growth
Rampant Growth
Rampant GrowthSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
246
Artist:
Tom Kyffin
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card and put that card into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.



Game 6 vs. Zombies.
I'm excited to check out how the changes I've made to the deck will affect how it plays. Hopefully, I won't have that slogging feeling. After a mull to 6 on my part, turn 1 gives us dueling swamps, which he follows up turn 2 with a Diregraf Ghoul
Diregraf Ghoul
Diregraf GhoulSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie
Rarity:
U
Number:
97
Artist:
Dave Kendall
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Diregraf Ghoul enters the battlefield tapped.
. Zombies. What a fun deck. I match his turn 2 creature with one of my own, but it's a RGlzY2lwbGUgb2YgGriselbrand
Griselbrand
GriselbrandSet: Avacyn Restored
Cost:
8
Color:
Black
Type:
Legendary Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
M
Number:
106
Artist:
Igor Kieryluk
Power:
7
Toughness:
7
Text:
Flying, lifelink Pay 7 life: Draw seven cards.
...not exactly up for takedown duties. Turn three gives him another ghoul and a swing down to 18 for me. Delicious zombie beats. I have no action on turn three other than to lay my second forest and pass. Turn four, he swings in with 2 2/2's, I block and cast Altar's Reap
Altar's Reap
Altar's ReapSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Text:
As an additional cost to cast Altar's Reap, sacrifice a creature. Draw two cards.
for some hot triggered action, drawing two cards and saving two damage in the process. I drop the Skeletor I just drew, and pass with mana up for my second Altar's Reap
Altar's Reap
Altar's ReapSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Text:
As an additional cost to cast Altar's Reap, sacrifice a creature. Draw two cards.
. [Editor's note: In case you missed the last article, that's the Reassembling Skeleton
Reassembling Skeleton
Reassembling SkeletonSet: Magic 2011
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Skeleton Warrior
Rarity:
U
Number:
112
Artist:
Austin Hsu
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
{1}{B}: Return Reassembling Skeleton from your graveyard to the battlefield tapped.
.] He plays Zombie Infestation
Zombie Infestation
Zombie InfestationSet: Odyssey
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
U
Number:
170
Artist:
Thomas M. Baxa
Text:
Discard two cards from your hand: Put a 2/2 black Zombie creature token into play.
and swings with the crew o' 2/2. I block and Reap
Reap
ReapSet: Tempest
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Ron Chironna
Text:
Return any number of target cards from your graveyard to your hand. You cannot choose more cards than the number of black permanents target opponent controls.
, drawing a pair of Rampant Growth
Rampant Growth
Rampant GrowthSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
246
Artist:
Tom Kyffin
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card and put that card into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.
s.

My options for my turn five are a) the double Rampant Growth
Rampant Growth
Rampant GrowthSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
246
Artist:
Tom Kyffin
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card and put that card into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.
turn, trading four life for two more lands in play b) play a Woodland Sleuth
Woodland Sleuth
Woodland SleuthSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
210
Artist:
Tomasz Jedruszek
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
Morbid — When Woodland Sleuth enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, return a creature card at random from your graveyard to your hand.
to try to stem the bleeding c) single Growth and regrow Skeletor, which seems pretty bad, even to me. I go for the double Growth, trying to set myself up for my higher casting cost creatures (Lumberknot
Lumberknot
LumberknotSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Treefolk
Rarity:
U
Number:
191
Artist:
Jason A. Engle
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Hexproof (This creature can't be the target of spells or abilities your opponents control.) Whenever a creature dies, put a +1/+1 counter on Lumberknot.
and Sleuth are both in my hand). EOT, he creates a zombie with Infest
Infest
InfestSet: Onslaught
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
157
Artist:
Ben Thompson
Text:
All creatures get -2/-2 until end of turn.
ation (discarding Vengeful Pharaoh
Vengeful Pharaoh
Vengeful PharaohSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie
Rarity:
R
Number:
116
Artist:
Igor Kieryluk
Power:
5
Toughness:
4
Text:
Deathtouch (Any amount of damage this deals to a creature is enough to destroy it.) Whenever combat damage is dealt to you or a planeswalker you control, if Vengeful Pharaoh is in your graveyard, destroy target attacking creature, then put Vengeful Pharaoh on top of your library.
and Ghoulraiser
Ghoulraiser
GhoulraiserSet: Innistrad
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie
Rarity:
C
Number:
102
Artist:
Steve Prescott
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Ghoulraiser enters the battlefield, return a Zombie card at random from your graveyard to your hand.
) and swings for 6 on his turn. Following the swing is a Ghoulraiser
Ghoulraiser
GhoulraiserSet: Innistrad
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie
Rarity:
C
Number:
102
Artist:
Steve Prescott
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Ghoulraiser enters the battlefield, return a Zombie card at random from your graveyard to your hand.
from his hand, returning the Pharaoh from the graveyard. As I'm sure you can guess, I lose the game in short order from here. I play my Sleuth and reanimate my Skeletor from the graveyard. On his turn, he uses Geth's Verdict
Geth's Verdict
Geth's VerdictSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
61
Artist:
Whit Brachna
Text:
Target player sacrifices a creature and loses 1 life.
on me twice (although I'm happy I saw the play of reanimating Skeletor again for the second Verdict, saving my Sleuth) but the lose 2 life portion proves relevant, as I can chump block 2 of his attacking 8 power. Dead Rodney.


Game 7 vs. Mono Red (Lucky number 7!)
I start by winning the die roll. Huzzah! My way to capitalize on this lucky break is to...play a swamp and pass. Luckily, my opponent also does not have a turn 1 play, just a mountain. We spend a couple turns just playing lands, then I break the standstill by casting my RGlzY2lwbGUgb2YgGriselbrand
Griselbrand
GriselbrandSet: Avacyn Restored
Cost:
8
Color:
Black
Type:
Legendary Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
M
Number:
106
Artist:
Igor Kieryluk
Power:
7
Toughness:
7
Text:
Flying, lifelink Pay 7 life: Draw seven cards.
. His turn, Arc Trail
Arc Trail
Arc TrailSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
81
Artist:
Marc Simonetti
Text:
Arc Trail deals 2 damage to target creature or player and 1 damage to another target creature or player.
. I sac my Disciple in response, gaining one life. Next turn sees me make the Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail HauberkSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
U
Number:
221
Artist:
Jason Felix
Text:
Equipped creature gets +4/+2. Equip—Sacrifice a creature.
(and start fervently hoping to draw Skeletor). His next turn of a Stromkirk Noble
Stromkirk Noble
Stromkirk NobleSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Vampire
Rarity:
R
Number:
164
Artist:
James Ryman
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Stromkirk Noble can't be blocked by Humans. Whenever Stromkirk Noble deals combat damage to a player, put a +1/+1 counter on it.
proves valiant, but Dead Weight
Dead Weight
Dead WeightSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature gets -2/-2.
. He then gets a Chandra's Phoenix
Chandra's Phoenix
Chandra's PhoenixSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Phoenix
Rarity:
R
Number:
126
Artist:
Aleksi Briclot
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying Haste (This creature can attack and {T} as soon as it comes under your control.) Whenever an opponent is dealt damage by a red instant or sorcery spell you control or by a red planeswalker you control, return Chandra's Phoenix from your graveyard to your hand.
and starts swinging at my face. Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Doom BladeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
93
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Destroy target nonblack creature.
takes care of that problem for now, though. Turn 6, I Make a Wish
Make a Wish
Make a WishSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
192
Artist:
Howard Lyon
Text:
Return two cards at random from your graveyard to your hand.
, getting back the Disciple and the Dead Weight
Dead Weight
Dead WeightSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature gets -2/-2.
. I was hoping for the Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Doom BladeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
93
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Destroy target nonblack creature.
, but them's the breaks.

His turn 6 sees a Goblin Fireslinger
Goblin Fireslinger
Goblin FireslingerSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Goblin Warrior
Rarity:
C
Number:
139
Artist:
Pete Venters
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
{T}: Goblin Fireslinger deals 1 damage to target player.
hit the table, which pulls his Weight...Dead. I also ramp via Rampant Growth
Rampant Growth
Rampant GrowthSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
246
Artist:
Tom Kyffin
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card and put that card into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.
, fetching a swamp, setting up for the Big Turn. I draw and cast Morkrut Banshee
Morkrut Banshee
Morkrut BansheeSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
U
Number:
110
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Morbid — When Morkrut Banshee enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, target creature gets -4/-4 until end of turn.
(no morbid), then cast RGlzY2lwbGUgb2YgGriselbrand
Griselbrand
GriselbrandSet: Avacyn Restored
Cost:
8
Color:
Black
Type:
Legendary Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
M
Number:
106
Artist:
Igor Kieryluk
Power:
7
Toughness:
7
Text:
Flying, lifelink Pay 7 life: Draw seven cards.
. With my Disciple on the stack, he double burns the Banshee
Banshee
BansheeSet: Chronicles
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Banshee
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Jesper Myrfors
Power:
0
Toughness:
1
Text:
X, T: Banshee deals X damage, half (rounded up) to you and half (rounded down) to target creature or player.
, eliminating my dreams of World Banshee
Banshee
BansheeSet: Chronicles
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Banshee
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Jesper Myrfors
Power:
0
Toughness:
1
Text:
X, T: Banshee deals X damage, half (rounded up) to you and half (rounded down) to target creature or player.
Demon
Demon
DemonSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
C
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying
mail Domination. His next turn Arc Trail
Arc Trail
Arc TrailSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
81
Artist:
Marc Simonetti
Text:
Arc Trail deals 2 damage to target creature or player and 1 damage to another target creature or player.
removes the remnants of the Disciple, gets back his Phoenix, and gives him a thirsty Stormblood Berserker
Stormblood Berserker
Stormblood BerserkerSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Berserker
Rarity:
U
Number:
156
Artist:
Min Yum
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Bloodthirst 2 (If an opponent was dealt damage this turn, this creature enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters on it.) Stormblood Berserker can't be blocked except by two or more creatures.
. I draw and make Skeletor in his Younger Years and say go. Turn 9, he swings with the Berserk
Berserk
BerserkSet: Alpha
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Dan Frazier
Text:
Until end of turn, target creature's current power doubles and it gains trample ability. If it attacks, target creature is destroyed at end of turn. This spell cannot be cast after current turn's attack is completed.
er while I'm holding a Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Doom BladeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
93
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Destroy target nonblack creature.
, and I ponder for a moment before sending the Berserk
Berserk
BerserkSet: Alpha
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Dan Frazier
Text:
Until end of turn, target creature's current power doubles and it gains trample ability. If it attacks, target creature is destroyed at end of turn. This spell cannot be cast after current turn's attack is completed.
er to Valhalla. He Arc Trail
Arc Trail
Arc TrailSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
81
Artist:
Marc Simonetti
Text:
Arc Trail deals 2 damage to target creature or player and 1 damage to another target creature or player.
s me and Skeletor (who comes right back) then remakes a Berserk
Berserk
BerserkSet: Alpha
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Dan Frazier
Text:
Until end of turn, target creature's current power doubles and it gains trample ability. If it attacks, target creature is destroyed at end of turn. This spell cannot be cast after current turn's attack is completed.
er.

It is now turn 10. I cast Woodland Sleuth
Woodland Sleuth
Woodland SleuthSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
210
Artist:
Tomasz Jedruszek
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
Morbid — When Woodland Sleuth enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, return a creature card at random from your graveyard to your hand.
(again with no morbid) and Demon
Demon
DemonSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
C
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying
mail him up. Skeletor, your services are no longer required. He goes Mountain
Mountain
MountainSet: Arabian Nights
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Douglas Shuler
Text:
Tap to add R to your mana pool.
, Phoenix, Lavamancer, then swings for 5 with the Phoenix and the Berserk
Berserk
BerserkSet: Alpha
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Dan Frazier
Text:
Until end of turn, target creature's current power doubles and it gains trample ability. If it attacks, target creature is destroyed at end of turn. This spell cannot be cast after current turn's attack is completed.
er. I EOT Skeletor back (listen, about those services...), then swing with a Demon
Demon
DemonSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
C
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying
Sleuth and a Skeletor. I'm hoping for the bad block, but my opponent is good at this, and lets me have another point of damage. So I have to cast Festerhide Boar
Festerhide Boar
Festerhide BoarSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Boar
Rarity:
C
Number:
179
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Trample Morbid — Festerhide Boar enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters on it if a creature died this turn.
without any morbidity. He makes a Noble and Goblin Fireslinger
Goblin Fireslinger
Goblin FireslingerSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Goblin Warrior
Rarity:
C
Number:
139
Artist:
Pete Venters
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
{T}: Goblin Fireslinger deals 1 damage to target player.
, then swings for the five with Phoenix and Berserk
Berserk
BerserkSet: Alpha
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Dan Frazier
Text:
Until end of turn, target creature's current power doubles and it gains trample ability. If it attacks, target creature is destroyed at end of turn. This spell cannot be cast after current turn's attack is completed.
er, dropping me to five. I swing with my whole squad, (Boar, Skeletor, Demon
Demon
DemonSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
C
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying
Sleuth), then cast another Disciple. I use his lifegain ability on my Demon
Demon
DemonSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
C
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying
Sleuth, which is responded to by a Lavamancer activation targeting the Disciple. Turn 12, he casts a slinger, targets me with the other slinger, then swings with the Noble, Phoenix, and Berserk
Berserk
BerserkSet: Alpha
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Dan Frazier
Text:
Until end of turn, target creature's current power doubles and it gains trample ability. If it attacks, target creature is destroyed at end of turn. This spell cannot be cast after current turn's attack is completed.
er. I draw Altar's Reap
Altar's Reap
Altar's ReapSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Text:
As an additional cost to cast Altar's Reap, sacrifice a creature. Draw two cards.
, cast it, then Demon
Demon
DemonSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
C
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying
up my Boar (with his trample) and swing for the win.

I finally won a game. Hurray! And I also liked the instant speed responses that my deck was giving me. You mean I can actually interact and play Magic instead of playing the role of the goldfish? I'll take that. All day and twice on Sunday. Also, the game that I get my Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail HauberkSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
U
Number:
221
Artist:
Jason Felix
Text:
Equipped creature gets +4/+2. Equip—Sacrifice a creature.
online and functioning the way it should is the game where my deck feels good under my mouse. So either I need to power up my creatures on a standalone basis or I need to find another way to turn up the volume. I'm still not happy with not having morbid play a role in any of my games so far, but we're not that far into the evolution of the deck so I'm going to give it a few more rounds before I start worrying about how the games themselves play out. I am worried that I'm playing more of a black/green rock type deck than a morbid deck. I don't think that I've activated morbid once in the seven games that I've played so far. I think that an answer to both of the issues that I've got here is to put in more equipment that has sacrifice a creature somewhere in it. Mortarpod
Mortarpod
MortarpodSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
2
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
U
Number:
115
Artist:
Eric Deschamps
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +0/+1 and has "Sacrifice this creature: This creature deals 1 damage to target creature or player." Equip {2}
, more Demon
Demon
DemonSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
C
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying
mail, maybe even a Piston Sledge
Piston Sledge
Piston SledgeSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
U
Number:
124
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
When Piston Sledge enters the battlefield, attach it to target creature you control. Equipped creature gets +3/+1. Equip—Sacrifice an artifact.
. Triggering morbid without having to tie up mana and/or cards seems like something I definitely want the deck to do.


Game 8 vs. Mono Black Proliferate
I keep an opening hand with a Dead Weight
Dead Weight
Dead WeightSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature gets -2/-2.
, four lands, and some other stuff. This game wasn't really close, as Wurmcoil Engine
Wurmcoil Engine
Wurmcoil EngineSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
6
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Wurm
Rarity:
M
Number:
223
Artist:
Raymond Swanland
Power:
6
Toughness:
6
Text:
Deathtouch, lifelink When Wurmcoil Engine is put into a graveyard from the battlefield, put a 3/3 colorless Wurm artifact creature token with deathtouch and a 3/3 colorless Wurm artifact creature token with lifelink onto the battlefield.
just does horrible horrible things to you if you're not careful. I drew my Naturalize
Naturalize
NaturalizeSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
275
Artist:
Ron Spears
Text:
Destroy target artifact or enchantment.
early and blew it on a Tumble Magnet
Tumble Magnet
Tumble MagnetSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
C
Number:
218
Artist:
Drew Baker
Text:
Tumble Magnet enters the battlefield with three charge counters on it. {T}, Remove a charge counter from Tumble Magnet: Tap target artifact or creature.
. With all of the artifacts that are running around either in a support role (Swords of all shapes and colors, Runechanter's Pike
Runechanter's Pike
Runechanter's PikeSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
R
Number:
231
Artist:
John Avon
Text:
Equipped creature has first strike and gets +X/+0, where X is the number of instant and sorcery cards in your graveyard. Equip {2}
) or in a bash-your-face role (Wurmcoil), I think that more Naturalize
Naturalize
NaturalizeSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
275
Artist:
Ron Spears
Text:
Destroy target artifact or enchantment.
s wouldn't be a horrible place for the deck to end up at. I did get to trigger morbid to kill off his Necrotic Ooze
Necrotic Ooze
Necrotic OozeSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Ooze
Rarity:
R
Number:
72
Artist:
James Ryman
Power:
4
Toughness:
3
Text:
As long as Necrotic Ooze is on the battlefield, it has all activated abilities of all creature cards in all graveyards.
with my Banshee
Banshee
BansheeSet: Chronicles
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Banshee
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Jesper Myrfors
Power:
0
Toughness:
1
Text:
X, T: Banshee deals X damage, half (rounded up) to you and half (rounded down) to target creature or player.
, so that was pretty good. But this game wasn't close at all, I died.


Game 9 Runn-ded over by GW tokens.

Game 10 Runn-ded over by UW Haunted Humans.


Okay. So, out of five games in this set, I was able to play three games and get dead quick in two others. There's obviously going to be a difference in power level between what I'm doing and what I'm playing against, but I don't think that it should be so gapingly obvious. This deck sometimes feels wonderful, and then when I play against even a Tier 2 deck, it feels like I'm not even playing the same game. More like I'm playing Go Fish, and they are playing Hold 'Em. Or, I'm on a RP server and they're tricked out and geared up for PvP. (Sorry
Sorry
SorrySet: Unglued
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
U
Number:
27
Artist:
Kaja Foglio
Text:
Before playing any spell, if a copy of that spell card is in any graveyard, the spell's caster may say Sorry. If he or she does not, any other player may counter the spell by saying Sorry as it is cast.If any player says Sorry at any other time, Sorry deals 2 damage to that player.
, guys…that inside joke stays there. I’m stubborn like that.) Perhaps I should start with how I'm actually planning on ending the game and going from there?

In my finished Magical Christmas Land product of an endgame, I'd like to be beating my opponent's face with at least a four (five and above preferred) power creature. How to do that?

Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail HauberkSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
U
Number:
221
Artist:
Jason Felix
Text:
Equipped creature gets +4/+2. Equip—Sacrifice a creature.
gives any creature I happen to put it on the four power boost that I'm looking for, so that's obviously an option. It would be more powerful if I went with more of a swarm strategy, which is a viable option for the deck. Put out tokens to use as fodder, either to sacrifice to various things for various effects (like Demon
Demon
DemonSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
C
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying
mail) or just as chump blockers while the rest of my deck does some work.

Wurmcoil Engine
Wurmcoil Engine
Wurmcoil EngineSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
6
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Wurm
Rarity:
M
Number:
223
Artist:
Raymond Swanland
Power:
6
Toughness:
6
Text:
Deathtouch, lifelink When Wurmcoil Engine is put into a graveyard from the battlefield, put a 3/3 colorless Wurm artifact creature token with deathtouch and a 3/3 colorless Wurm artifact creature token with lifelink onto the battlefield.
would be a fantastic finisher, but at 10 bucks apiece, that goes way over and beyond my budget regardless of whether I'm doing this article series or not. So that's not an option. I could possibly move Dungrove Elder
Dungrove Elder
Dungrove ElderSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
3
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Treefolk
Rarity:
R
Number:
171
Artist:
Matt Stewart
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Hexproof (This creature can't be the target of spells or abilities your opponents control.) Dungrove Elder's power and toughness are each equal to the number of Forests you control.
s into the deck. They're hexproof, so very hard for the opponent to deal with if I'm careful. They're pretty cheap to purchase (1.22 online)...maybe I'll give them a test run if I run out of other ideas. Cudgel Troll
Cudgel Troll
Cudgel TrollSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Troll
Rarity:
U
Number:
174
Artist:
Jesper Ejsing
Power:
4
Toughness:
3
Text:
{G}: Regenerate Cudgel Troll. (The next time this creature would be destroyed this turn, it isn't. Instead tap it, remove all damage from it, and remove it from combat.)
is a simple 4/3 beatstick for 2GG that also has a regeneration ability built in, but all that he really does is beat the face of whatever chump blocker my opponent has in the way. I think that we can find something that brings a little more to the party.

Ah...a lovely example: Bloodgift Demon
Bloodgift Demon
Bloodgift DemonSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
R
Number:
89
Artist:
Peter Mohrbacher
Power:
5
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying At the beginning of your upkeep, target player draws a card and loses 1 life.
is a fantastic card for a finisher that I can only see myself excluding for thematic purposes. He's a 5/4 flyer, so he doesn't worry about all the creatures hanging out on the ground floor of things. He's black, which means that he dodges Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Doom BladeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
93
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Destroy target nonblack creature.
. He lets me make one of the most lopsided trades in the history of Magic, one life payment for one card drawn. Since he's a creature, he's much easier for me to kill off if my life gets a little low. I think that he'll make a fine finisher for my deck. He doesn't do morbid, but he finishes games, he draws cards, and he's naturally evasive. What's not to love? He'll go in as a 2-3 of, depending on other factors.

Bonehoard
Bonehoard
BonehoardSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
R
Number:
100
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +X/+X, where X is the number of creature cards in all graveyards. Equip {2}
could go great in a deck like this as well. I'm already interested in killing as many creatures as I can for fun and profit (in Las Vegas!) so why not have something that rewards me for a well stocked graveyard. As just a Lhurgoyf
Lhurgoyf
LhurgoyfSet: Fifth Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Lhurgoyf
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Pete Venters
Power:
*
Toughness:
1+*
Text:
Lhurgoyf has power equal to the number of creature cards in all graveyards and toughness equal to 1 plus the number of creature cards in all graveyards.
, it would be decent to run in the deck as a late game finisher. However, it's not just a creature. It's not a creature at all! Living weapon was one of the best ideas to come around in a long time, and turning any/every creature I have into a late game threat with an equip cost sounds excellent to me. Skeletor has plenty of uses in this deck as fodder, but Skeletor with +1/+1 for each creature in all (ALL!) graveyards on him means that business is about to pick up, if you follow my meaning.

Kessig Cage Breakers gives me lots of creatures if there are lots of creatures in my graveyard. Plays well with me stocking my graveyard with creatures, and gives me lots more creatures to pick up a Bonehoard
Bonehoard
BonehoardSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
R
Number:
100
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +X/+X, where X is the number of creature cards in all graveyards. Equip {2}
or a Demon
Demon
DemonSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
C
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying
mail. Definitely something to keep my eyes on in the future.

Sweepers: I need an option to ensure that sheer numbers of creatures don't just automatically overwhelm me. Life's Finale
Life's Finale
Life's FinaleSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
65
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Text:
Destroy all creatures, then search target opponent's library for up to three creature cards and put them into his or her graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
is the only real option here that's cheap enough to get (.64 tickets per). Black Sun's Zenith
Black Sun's Zenith
Black Sun's ZenithSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
39
Artist:
Daniel Ljunggren
Text:
Put X -1/-1 counters on each creature. Shuffle Black Sun's Zenith into its owner's library.
would be awesome, but has jumped from 2.50 (when I got my playset) to over 5 bucks a pop now. Too much for this column, although I wouldn't be mad at anyone who threw them in. They're great. Marrow Shards
Marrow Shards
Marrow ShardsSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
5
Color:
White
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
15
Artist:
Raymond Swanland
Text:
({(w/p)} can be paid with either {W} or 2 life.) Marrow Shards deals 1 damage to each attacking creature.
could be useful as maybe a sideboard card (if we ever get that far) against token decks, but for maindeck, I'm not interested. So, six mana Wrath it is. I think that I'll start this one as a three of, and see if I draw it enough and draw it on time enough to be worth the spot. But as my deck currently stands, I don't have an out to decks that vomit creatures onto the board, even just measly 1/1's. When there's five of them, as my game 9 opponent put on me fairly quickly, those 1/1's add up. Skeletor helps in this regard, but he doesn't fly. Life's Finale
Life's Finale
Life's FinaleSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
65
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Text:
Destroy all creatures, then search target opponent's library for up to three creature cards and put them into his or her graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
will hopefully turn into my Samuel L. Jackson moment of the deck: "When you absolutely, positively, got to kill every mother flyer on the board...accept no substitutes.".

There's also Carnifex Demon
Carnifex Demon
Carnifex DemonSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
R
Number:
57
Artist:
Aleksi Briclot
Power:
6
Toughness:
6
Text:
Flying Carnifex Demon enters the battlefield with two -1/-1 counters on it. {B}, Remove a -1/-1 counter from Carnifex Demon: Put a -1/-1 counter on each other creature.
, which I have to admit has me tapping my lip thinking about the advantages that he could bring to the party. He's another beatdown assassin, he flies so he's harder to kill in combat, and he has a delicious board sweeper built into what he already does. Black cards should be able to multitask, and Carni brings a little extra flavor to the party. Worse case, he's a 4/4 flyer. Best case, he's a 6/6 flyer that has triggered morbid for me twice and whittled down my opponent's army to a more manageable size. Something to keep in mind, but probably not what I'm looking for at the moment.


Card Advantage: Either more cards for me or dealing with multiple cards on my opponent's part. Right now I'm very heavy on one-for-one exchanges with my opponents. I'll trade you my Ambush Viper
Ambush Viper
Ambush ViperSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Snake
Rarity:
C
Number:
169
Artist:
Alan Pollack
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flash (You may cast this spell any time you could cast an instant.) Deathtouch (Any amount of damage this deals to a creature is enough to destroy it.)
for your Necrotic Ooze
Necrotic Ooze
Necrotic OozeSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Ooze
Rarity:
R
Number:
72
Artist:
James Ryman
Power:
4
Toughness:
3
Text:
As long as Necrotic Ooze is on the battlefield, it has all activated abilities of all creature cards in all graveyards.
. I'll trade you my Dead Weight
Dead Weight
Dead WeightSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature gets -2/-2.
for your Llanowar Elves
Llanowar Elves
Llanowar ElvesSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elves
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Anson Maddocks
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
T: Add G to your mana pool. This ability is played as an interrupt.
. Eventually, however, I run out of cards. Altar's Reap
Altar's Reap
Altar's ReapSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Text:
As an additional cost to cast Altar's Reap, sacrifice a creature. Draw two cards.
has been great for me in terms of refilling my hand, but it costs me two cards to draw two more. Now, granted, one of those cards is always something extra on the board that I'm about to lose in combat anyway, so it also effectively reads “Gain 2-5 life” but I would like to see more options for advancing what I'm doing without having to burn through cards in my hand so quickly. Note to all Reap
Reap
ReapSet: Tempest
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Ron Chironna
Text:
Return any number of target cards from your graveyard to your hand. You cannot choose more cards than the number of black permanents target opponent controls.
fans: I'm not moving it out of my deck. I want more stuff, not different stuff.

Druidic Satchel
Druidic Satchel
Druidic SatchelSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
207
Artist:
Matt Stewart
Text:
{2}, {T}: Reveal the top card of your library. If it's a creature card, put a 1/1 green Saproling creature token onto the battlefield. If it's a land card, put that card onto the battlefield under your control. If it's a noncreature, nonland card, you gain 2 life.
seems like it could be better and better the longer the game goes. Sometimes it will just be 2 added onto my life. Other times it'll be a free Rampant Growth
Rampant Growth
Rampant GrowthSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
246
Artist:
Tom Kyffin
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card and put that card into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.
. Sometimes it'll be a dude. Any and all of these are good options for my deck. It's not optimized, because I don't have any way to stack the top of my deck, but free units of good stuff seems like a pretty good fit for my deck. The only issue I'm worried about here is lack of space available in the decklist. I have several themes that I'm trying to push, and I think something is going to get pushed out.

Jade Mage
Jade Mage
Jade MageSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Shaman
Rarity:
U
Number:
181
Artist:
Izzy
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
{2}{G}: Put a 1/1 green Saproling creature token onto the battlefield.
: Creature that makes other creatures should be good. Creature that makes other creatures and are only limited by how much mana I can put in are really good. Interesting to note that this creature gets better and better as my deck gets more and more refined in using throwaway creatures. Need a 1/1 to tote a Bonehoard
Bonehoard
BonehoardSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
R
Number:
100
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +X/+X, where X is the number of creature cards in all graveyards. Equip {2}
? Got it. Need something to sacrifice to Altar's Reap
Altar's Reap
Altar's ReapSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Text:
As an additional cost to cast Altar's Reap, sacrifice a creature. Draw two cards.
? You betcha. Need to block that 6/6 Wurmcoil Engine
Wurmcoil Engine
Wurmcoil EngineSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
6
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Wurm
Rarity:
M
Number:
223
Artist:
Raymond Swanland
Power:
6
Toughness:
6
Text:
Deathtouch, lifelink When Wurmcoil Engine is put into a graveyard from the battlefield, put a 3/3 colorless Wurm artifact creature token with deathtouch and a 3/3 colorless Wurm artifact creature token with lifelink onto the battlefield.
? Here, Wurmy, have a 1/1 to nom on.

Phyrexian Rager
Phyrexian Rager
Phyrexian RagerSet: Apocalypse
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Horror
Rarity:
C
Number:
49
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Phyrexian Rager comes into play, you draw a card and you lose 1 life.
: Gives me a 2/2 body with that unfair trade again. Have one of my life points, I'll draw another delicious card. BWAHAHAHA! Ahem. Nothing to see here, just a card that does what it says. Move along.

That's plenty of thinking about what cards might go in, how about some thoughts about what might come out and where I sit on each card in the deck.


CMC1
2 Dead Weight
Dead Weight
Dead WeightSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature gets -2/-2.
: So far, I've always been happy to draw this card. Gives me targeted removal in the early game, and there's always something around that could use a good killing. Worst case that I've had with it so far was putting one on a Wurmcoil in order to buy myself some extra turns. It stays for now, although it may become Fume Spitter
Fume Spitter
Fume SpitterSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Horror
Rarity:
C
Number:
63
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Sacrifice Fume Spitter: Put a -1/-1 counter on target creature.
at some point.

1 Typhoid Rat: 1/1 Deathtouch for one B gives me an early turn play, as well as threatens to kill whatever it tangles with. That's the upside. The downside is that it's useless in the later parts of the game, it dies to a stern look in its direction, and never seems to actually take something down. Not a slap at the card itself, but every deck has ways to kill a X/1, even if it's just Gut Shot
Gut Shot
Gut ShotSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
5
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
86
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
({(r/p)} can be paid with either {R} or 2 life.) Gut Shot deals 1 damage to target creature or player.
. I'm on the fence on this one. It will likely come out at some point, but it is a creature, it does what it says it'll do (unless it gets sniped) and gives me a turn 1 creature (right now the only one). Likely to come out.

2 Caravan Vigil
Caravan Vigil
Caravan VigilSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
173
Artist:
Drew Baker
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card, reveal it, put it into your hand, then shuffle your library. Morbid — You may put that card onto the battlefield instead of putting it into your hand if a creature died this turn.
: Me likey. One mana to make sure I hit my land drop for the turn, to thin out a land from my deck, with the upside of a half-cost Rampant Growth
Rampant Growth
Rampant GrowthSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
246
Artist:
Tom Kyffin
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card and put that card into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.
if my deck kills something like it should? Keeper.


CMC2
2 Rampant Growth
Rampant Growth
Rampant GrowthSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
246
Artist:
Tom Kyffin
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card and put that card into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.
: Mana Ramp is Good. If I didn't have Caravan Vigil
Caravan Vigil
Caravan VigilSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
173
Artist:
Drew Baker
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card, reveal it, put it into your hand, then shuffle your library. Morbid — You may put that card onto the battlefield instead of putting it into your hand if a creature died this turn.
as Growths 3 and 4, I'd bump this up to 4-of status in a second. As it is, two is okay for now. I'll revisit my ramp suite once the deck gets closer to where it wants to be. Macro changes before micro.

3 Altar's Reap
Altar's Reap
Altar's ReapSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Text:
As an additional cost to cast Altar's Reap, sacrifice a creature. Draw two cards.
: Do I have to explain this? It does what I want, when I want, and usually for less investment than you would think going in. Also a pseudo-lifegain spell, since I use it during combat a lot. Could go up to 4-of, but I'm happy with 3 for now. I think deck space is going to be TIGHT.

3 Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Doom BladeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
93
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Destroy target nonblack creature.
: Treat a non-black creature like my wife treats every spider she sees. KILL IT! [Editor's note: No, I am not his wife.] At least a 3-of.

1 Naturalize
Naturalize
NaturalizeSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
275
Artist:
Ron Spears
Text:
Destroy target artifact or enchantment.
: While I do love me some Naturalize
Naturalize
NaturalizeSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
275
Artist:
Ron Spears
Text:
Destroy target artifact or enchantment.
, I either need to get 2 more in the deck or find another way to deal with artifacts. Acidic Slime
Acidic Slime
Acidic SlimeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Ooze
Rarity:
U
Number:
165
Artist:
Karl Kopinski
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Deathtouch (Creatures dealt damage by this creature are destroyed. You can divide this creature's combat damage among any of the creatures blocking or blocked by it.) When Acidic Slime enters the battlefield, destroy target artifact, enchantment, or land.
could reinforce here, but not instant and not 2 mana. I'd like at least one more in the deck for now, with an eye towards finding a creature that kills artifacts.

2 Ambush Viper
Ambush Viper
Ambush ViperSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Snake
Rarity:
C
Number:
169
Artist:
Alan Pollack
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flash (You may cast this spell any time you could cast an instant.) Deathtouch (Any amount of damage this deals to a creature is enough to destroy it.)
: Green creature kill. Staying for now. Will give a longer look later on. Even if it just trades, it goes to the graveyard for Bonehoard
Bonehoard
BonehoardSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
R
Number:
100
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +X/+X, where X is the number of creature cards in all graveyards. Equip {2}
ing and morbid. Staying as 2-of in my deck. Gives me 7 kill shots in the deck with Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Doom BladeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
93
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Destroy target nonblack creature.
and Dead Weight
Dead Weight
Dead WeightSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature gets -2/-2.
.

2 RGlzY2lwbGUgb2YgGriselbrand
Griselbrand
GriselbrandSet: Avacyn Restored
Cost:
8
Color:
Black
Type:
Legendary Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
M
Number:
106
Artist:
Igor Kieryluk
Power:
7
Toughness:
7
Text:
Flying, lifelink Pay 7 life: Draw seven cards.
: I can't say that I've ever been "happy" to draw him. He lets me do some life gaining, which isn't to be ignored, but I don't think that it's enough at this point to keep him on the team. Unfortunately, there are some cards that need to get out before the Disciple, and it does fit what the deck wants to do. So he stays on for a while, especially since the life gain portion of what he gives me fits in very well with the Bloodgift Demon
Bloodgift Demon
Bloodgift DemonSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
R
Number:
89
Artist:
Peter Mohrbacher
Power:
5
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying At the beginning of your upkeep, target player draws a card and loses 1 life.
that I'm putting in.

2 Reassembling Skeleton
Reassembling Skeleton
Reassembling SkeletonSet: Magic 2011
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Skeleton Warrior
Rarity:
U
Number:
112
Artist:
Austin Hsu
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
{1}{B}: Return Reassembling Skeleton from your graveyard to the battlefield tapped.
: Never unhappy to see Skeletor. I see him a lot, and if I find extra room in the deck, I'll slide one more in.

1 Skirsdag High Priest
Skirsdag High Priest
Skirsdag High PriestSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Cleric
Rarity:
R
Number:
117
Artist:
Jason A. Engle
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Morbid — {T}, Tap two untapped creatures you control: Put a 5/5 black Demon creature token with flying onto the battlefield. Activate this ability only if a creature died this turn.
: I've drawn him in one game, and having three creatures on the board PLUS triggering morbid is tougher than it looks. Out it goes.


CMC3
1 Devouring Swarm
Devouring Swarm
Devouring SwarmSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Insect
Rarity:
C
Number:
91
Artist:
Wayne England
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying Sacrifice a creature: Devouring Swarm gets +1/+1 until end of turn.
: Evasive creature with a FREE sac effect. We'll keep as a 1 of for now, as a memento of our mana curve.


CMC4
1 Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail HauberkSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
U
Number:
221
Artist:
Jason Felix
Text:
Equipped creature gets +4/+2. Equip—Sacrifice a creature.
: I love this card. It's too expensive to cast, but it's flavorful, gives me a no-mana sacrifice outlet, and powers up any creature it's on. Plays well with Skeletor in His Younger Years. From an efficiency standpoint, should be a no questions cut, but I'm keeping it due to theme and flavor and awesome. Just 1, though.

1 Make a Wish
Make a Wish
Make a WishSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
192
Artist:
Howard Lyon
Text:
Return two cards at random from your graveyard to your hand.
: Well, I said that there was a theme to get pushed out earlier, and the random recursion is it. Four mana at Sorcery speed is too much of a drain on what I want to do. Also, it's not a creature. Also, it just feels clunky in my hand. -1.

1 Brain Weevil
Brain Weevil
Brain WeevilSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Insect
Rarity:
C
Number:
91
Artist:
Anthony Jones
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Intimidate (This creature can't be blocked except by artifact creatures and/or creatures that share a color with it.) Sacrifice Brain Weevil: Target player discards two cards. Activate this ability only any time you could cast a sorcery.
: Lets me trigger morbid on demand, lets me attack my opponent's hand. But it's still 4 mana for a 1/1. The free morbid is something that I like, and when considering ways to power up the morbid theme, having a sac effect that doesn't cost me mana is pretty good. Okay, it's not really, but I'm keeping the Weevil for this round, so I'm talking myself into the card. Is it working for you? Because it's really not working for me.

2 Festerhide Boar
Festerhide Boar
Festerhide BoarSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Boar
Rarity:
C
Number:
179
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Trample Morbid — Festerhide Boar enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters on it if a creature died this turn.
: 3/3 for 4 isn't a horrible deal, and the upside of a 5/5 for 4 with morbid seems pretty good. The trample is also not something that can be ignored, as it makes chump blocking nearly impossible. Depending on space, I'd like to move this up to a 4-of, but I don't think room will be available in this swing through.

2 Lumberknot
Lumberknot
LumberknotSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Treefolk
Rarity:
U
Number:
191
Artist:
Jason A. Engle
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Hexproof (This creature can't be the target of spells or abilities your opponents control.) Whenever a creature dies, put a +1/+1 counter on Lumberknot.
and 2 Woodland Sleuth
Woodland Sleuth
Woodland SleuthSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
210
Artist:
Tomasz Jedruszek
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
Morbid — When Woodland Sleuth enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, return a creature card at random from your graveyard to your hand.
: One goes away for being a 1/1 for 4 mana. One goes away due to the theme being pushed out of the deck. Which one is which? Well, gentle reader, I leave that as an exercise for you. -2 and -2.


CMC5
2 Hollowhenge Scavenger
Hollowhenge Scavenger
Hollowhenge ScavengerSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
U
Number:
188
Artist:
Slawomir Maniak
Power:
4
Toughness:
5
Text:
Morbid — When Hollowhenge Scavenger enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, you gain 5 life.
: 4/5 for 5 isn't ideal, but it meets my goal of having a four power creature to beat people in the face with. Doesn't have trample, doesn't fly, doesn't regenerate, but it does give the chance for a little bit of life gain. I don't believe that what it does versus what it's costing me (including the opportunity cost of playing, you know, a better creature in that space) is enough to justify keeping it in the deck, but I seem to be running low on morbid creatures. Was on my cut list, but then I reconsidered for this round. On the list, though. Definitely on the list.

2 Morkrut Banshee
Morkrut Banshee
Morkrut BansheeSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
U
Number:
110
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Morbid — When Morkrut Banshee enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, target creature gets -4/-4 until end of turn.
: 4/4 with a morbid kill shot attached? I'm in. Not something I would play in a normal deck, but one of the best cards for this deck. Decently powerful and beats folks all about the head and face with 4 power. Keep. Maybe 4-of. Depends on space and what else I want to bring in.

1 Somberwald Spider
Somberwald Spider
Somberwald SpiderSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spider
Rarity:
C
Number:
202
Artist:
Volkan Baga
Power:
2
Toughness:
4
Text:
Reach (This creature can block creatures with flying.) Morbid — Somberwald Spider enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters on it if a creature died this turn.
: I have a hard time dealing with flying creatures beyond kill spells. A creature with reach that gets bigger when morbid is just what the doctor ordered. I'll keep the one, and think HARD about adding a second one.

That's a lot of typing, let's sum up.


OUT
1 Skirsdag High Priest
Skirsdag High Priest
Skirsdag High PriestSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Cleric
Rarity:
R
Number:
117
Artist:
Jason A. Engle
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Morbid — {T}, Tap two untapped creatures you control: Put a 5/5 black Demon creature token with flying onto the battlefield. Activate this ability only if a creature died this turn.

1 Make a Wish
Make a Wish
Make a WishSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
192
Artist:
Howard Lyon
Text:
Return two cards at random from your graveyard to your hand.

2 Woodland Sleuth
Woodland Sleuth
Woodland SleuthSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Scout
Rarity:
C
Number:
210
Artist:
Tomasz Jedruszek
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
Morbid — When Woodland Sleuth enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, return a creature card at random from your graveyard to your hand.

2 Lumberknot
Lumberknot
LumberknotSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Treefolk
Rarity:
U
Number:
191
Artist:
Jason A. Engle
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Hexproof (This creature can't be the target of spells or abilities your opponents control.) Whenever a creature dies, put a +1/+1 counter on Lumberknot.


6 out, one over my guidelines, but the huge cutting that I want to do is going to have to wait, at least until I get in a few more games. But we'll see how the deck plays with this round of cuts before I get rid of the other cards that I want out. And who knows? Maybe the new finishers plus a little token making is just what the doctor ordered!

IN
2 Bonehoard
Bonehoard
BonehoardSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
R
Number:
100
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +X/+X, where X is the number of creature cards in all graveyards. Equip {2}
: Envisioned endgame for this evolving deck right now is bashing with a creature holding a Bonehoard
Bonehoard
BonehoardSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
R
Number:
100
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +X/+X, where X is the number of creature cards in all graveyards. Equip {2}
. There should probably be a Bonehoard
Bonehoard
BonehoardSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
R
Number:
100
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +X/+X, where X is the number of creature cards in all graveyards. Equip {2}
somewhere in the deck, in that case.
1 Life's Finale
Life's Finale
Life's FinaleSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
65
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Text:
Destroy all creatures, then search target opponent's library for up to three creature cards and put them into his or her graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
: I need the wrath, I want the wrath. I just don't want too many too soon. 1 now, 1 later.
2 Bloodgift Demon
Bloodgift Demon
Bloodgift DemonSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
R
Number:
89
Artist:
Peter Mohrbacher
Power:
5
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying At the beginning of your upkeep, target player draws a card and loses 1 life.
: For all the reasons laid out above. Also, it's only 12 cents online as of my purchase, so it's a great budget finisher for your black decks in general.
1 Jade Mage
Jade Mage
Jade MageSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Shaman
Rarity:
U
Number:
181
Artist:
Izzy
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
{2}{G}: Put a 1/1 green Saproling creature token onto the battlefield.
: For incremental advantage, as well as tokens galore. Might go up to 2. Competing with Druidic Satchel
Druidic Satchel
Druidic SatchelSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
207
Artist:
Matt Stewart
Text:
{2}, {T}: Reveal the top card of your library. If it's a creature card, put a 1/1 green Saproling creature token onto the battlefield. If it's a land card, put that card onto the battlefield under your control. If it's a noncreature, nonland card, you gain 2 life.
for the slot in the deck.

Back to the games!


Game 11 vs. Blue/Green Pod with Skaab Ruinator
Skaab Ruinator
Skaab RuinatorSet: Innistrad
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie Horror
Rarity:
M
Number:
77
Artist:
Chris Rahn
Power:
5
Toughness:
6
Text:
As an additional cost to cast Skaab Ruinator, exile three creature cards from your graveyard. Flying You may cast Skaab Ruinator from your graveyard.
s
Really fun game here. The ending comes from four Skaab Ruinator
Skaab Ruinator
Skaab RuinatorSet: Innistrad
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie Horror
Rarity:
M
Number:
77
Artist:
Chris Rahn
Power:
5
Toughness:
6
Text:
As an additional cost to cast Skaab Ruinator, exile three creature cards from your graveyard. Flying You may cast Skaab Ruinator from your graveyard.
s/Cackling Counterpart
Cackling Counterpart
Cackling CounterpartSet: Innistrad
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
46
Artist:
David Rapoza
Text:
Put a token onto the battlefield that's a copy of target creature you control. Flashback {5}{U}{U} (You may cast this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then exile it.)
tokens coming to my face. The biggest downer there at the end was the Life's Finale
Life's Finale
Life's FinaleSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
65
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Text:
Destroy all creatures, then search target opponent's library for up to three creature cards and put them into his or her graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
just chilling in my hand since the beginning of the game because I misclicked on a forest with a Caravan Vigil
Caravan Vigil
Caravan VigilSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
173
Artist:
Drew Baker
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card, reveal it, put it into your hand, then shuffle your library. Morbid — You may put that card onto the battlefield instead of putting it into your hand if a creature died this turn.
rather than the second swamp I needed to wrath the board. Them’s the breaks. I did like how my deck played out, though. Jade Mage
Jade Mage
Jade MageSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Shaman
Rarity:
U
Number:
181
Artist:
Izzy
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
{2}{G}: Put a 1/1 green Saproling creature token onto the battlefield.
made her triumphant debut on turn two, and I was AMAZED at how wonderfully she played out. Turn 3 saw a never-ending stream of EOT Saproling
Saproling
SaprolingSet: Phyrexia vs. The Coalition
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Saproling
Rarity:
C
Number:
3
Artist:
Warren Mahy
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
tokens, brought to you by the number 2 and the letter G. (Reread Jade Mage
Jade Mage
Jade MageSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Shaman
Rarity:
U
Number:
181
Artist:
Izzy
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
{2}{G}: Put a 1/1 green Saproling creature token onto the battlefield.
). I was unfortunate to not get the other swamp I needed, although my opponent helped that out with an Acidic Slime
Acidic Slime
Acidic SlimeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Ooze
Rarity:
U
Number:
165
Artist:
Karl Kopinski
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Deathtouch (Creatures dealt damage by this creature are destroyed. You can divide this creature's combat damage among any of the creatures blocking or blocked by it.) When Acidic Slime enters the battlefield, destroy target artifact, enchantment, or land.
on the one swamp I had out early. Fun fun game, awesome ending even though I lost, and my deck played well. Can’t say enough about what kind of a turbocharge the Jade Mage
Jade Mage
Jade MageSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Shaman
Rarity:
U
Number:
181
Artist:
Izzy
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
{2}{G}: Put a 1/1 green Saproling creature token onto the battlefield.
made on the deck. Here’s hoping I draw more!


Game 12 vs. Red Green Black..something?
Not much of a game, and I didn’t make any awesome plays. I kept a very slow hand, and that wasn’t the right move. The end comes with an array of 1/1 and 2/2 value creatures like Perilous Myr
Perilous Myr
Perilous MyrSet: Scars of Mirrodin
Cost:
2
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Myr
Rarity:
C
Number:
192
Artist:
Jason Felix
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
When Perilous Myr is put into a graveyard from the battlefield, it deals 2 damage to target creature or player.
, Llanowar Elves
Llanowar Elves
Llanowar ElvesSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elves
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Anson Maddocks
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
T: Add G to your mana pool. This ability is played as an interrupt.
, and a pair of Phyrexian Rager
Phyrexian Rager
Phyrexian RagerSet: Apocalypse
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Horror
Rarity:
C
Number:
49
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Phyrexian Rager comes into play, you draw a card and you lose 1 life.
s. The beatdown proved too much for my keep. I’m sure that his deck never got out the starting blocks, and I didn’t get to see what it really did, but I was dead just the same. I’ve got to get better at keeping good hands and throwing away the bad ones.


Game 13 vs. Mono White Token Control
Another good game, even though I lost. I do have a weakness to flyers, and his flying spirits made the point. I drew both of my answers to flying hordes, Somberwald Spider
Somberwald Spider
Somberwald SpiderSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spider
Rarity:
C
Number:
202
Artist:
Volkan Baga
Power:
2
Toughness:
4
Text:
Reach (This creature can block creatures with flying.) Morbid — Somberwald Spider enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters on it if a creature died this turn.
AND Life’s Finale. When my Bonehoard
Bonehoard
BonehoardSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
R
Number:
100
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +X/+X, where X is the number of creature cards in all graveyards. Equip {2}
also showed up, I thought that I had a real chance to win this game. Then his Oblivion Ring
Oblivion Ring
Oblivion RingSet: Lorwyn
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
C
Number:
34
Artist:
Wayne England
Text:
When Oblivion Ring comes into play, remove another target nonland permanent from the game. When Oblivion Ring leaves play, return the removed card to play under its owner's control.
showed up, and I was a sad duckie. A good game, and one I enjoyed. But. This whole flyer thing is starting to be a theme for me tonight.

A pause to reflect on how I’ve lost the past three games. Flyers, dumb author, flyers. I knew coming in that I was weak to flyers, and that I was weak to swarms. How to address those shortcomings is my next order of business.


Game 14 vs. Red Black Vampires
I won! I won! The changes that I’ve made to the deck so far are starting to pay off beautifully. There were a couple of key points for the deck. Point 1: He had an active Bloodline Keeper
Bloodline Keeper
Bloodline KeeperSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Vampire
Rarity:
R
Number:
90
Artist:
Jason Chan
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Flying {T}: Put a 2/2 black Vampire creature token with flying onto the battlefield. {B}: Transform Bloodline Keeper. Activate this ability only if you control five or more Vampires.
, transformed with plenty of friends. I had enough life to take the swing, but he doesn’t swing. I think that he wanted to swing all the way from 20 to 0 on me. But there was a grand Finale waiting for his vampires. An UnLife's Finale
Life's Finale
Life's FinaleSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
65
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Text:
Destroy all creatures, then search target opponent's library for up to three creature cards and put them into his or her graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
, if you will. Finale into Bloodgift Demon
Bloodgift Demon
Bloodgift DemonSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
R
Number:
89
Artist:
Peter Mohrbacher
Power:
5
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying At the beginning of your upkeep, target player draws a card and loses 1 life.
goes well. Until, of course, my Red Black opponent throws enough burn to conduct a cookout at and of the Keeper. No worries though, as Point 2 was me bringing back a Skeletor that had hit the bricks, only to give him a Dead Weight
Dead Weight
Dead WeightSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature gets -2/-2.
to hold (triggering Morbid) and then bringing in my 4/6 Somberwald Spider
Somberwald Spider
Somberwald SpiderSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spider
Rarity:
C
Number:
202
Artist:
Volkan Baga
Power:
2
Toughness:
4
Text:
Reach (This creature can block creatures with flying.) Morbid — Somberwald Spider enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters on it if a creature died this turn.
. A few swings later, and that was that.


Game 15 vs. Batterskull
Batterskull
BatterskullSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
5
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
M
Number:
130
Artist:
Mark Zug
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +4/+4 and has vigilance and lifelink. {3}: Return Batterskull to its owner's hand. Equip {5}
and Curse of Deaths Hold
Yep, that’s all it took to defeat me. He fiddled with a Batterskull
Batterskull
BatterskullSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
5
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
M
Number:
130
Artist:
Mark Zug
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +4/+4 and has vigilance and lifelink. {3}: Return Batterskull to its owner's hand. Equip {5}
repeatedly until cursing both the Skeletor in His Younger Years that I had into nothingness. Since the rest of my hand through the game was ramp ramp ramp…it didn’t take long. Batterskull
Batterskull
BatterskullSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
5
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
M
Number:
130
Artist:
Mark Zug
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +4/+4 and has vigilance and lifelink. {3}: Return Batterskull to its owner's hand. Equip {5}
is rough.


So, artifacts are still an issue, and swarms of creatures (especially flying creatures) are hard to handle. On the plus side, I didn’t play any of the top tier decks during this set, so I was able to see what the deck is capable of doing.


OUT
2 Disciples of Griselbrand
Griselbrand
GriselbrandSet: Avacyn Restored
Cost:
8
Color:
Black
Type:
Legendary Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
M
Number:
106
Artist:
Igor Kieryluk
Power:
7
Toughness:
7
Text:
Flying, lifelink Pay 7 life: Draw seven cards.
Doesn’t do enough for me. Doesn’t affect the board, gives me the option for sacrifice tricks, but at some point the tricks have to give way to better answers.
1 Brain Weevil
Brain Weevil
Brain WeevilSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Insect
Rarity:
C
Number:
91
Artist:
Anthony Jones
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Intimidate (This creature can't be blocked except by artifact creatures and/or creatures that share a color with it.) Sacrifice Brain Weevil: Target player discards two cards. Activate this ability only any time you could cast a sorcery.
: Never drew him. No pouty weevils on my team, buddy!
1 Devouring Swarm
Devouring Swarm
Devouring SwarmSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Insect
Rarity:
C
Number:
91
Artist:
Wayne England
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying Sacrifice a creature: Devouring Swarm gets +1/+1 until end of turn.
: Alas, mana curve…we hardly knew ye.
1 Forest
Forest
ForestSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add G to your mana pool.
: With the Rampant Growth
Rampant Growth
Rampant GrowthSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
246
Artist:
Tom Kyffin
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card and put that card into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.
and the Caravan Vigil
Caravan Vigil
Caravan VigilSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
173
Artist:
Drew Baker
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card, reveal it, put it into your hand, then shuffle your library. Morbid — You may put that card onto the battlefield instead of putting it into your hand if a creature died this turn.
, I can go get some lands. I’ve noticed a slight tendency towards mana flooding, and want to see if getting rid of the forest is better than getting rid of the ramp.

IN
1 Life's Finale
Life's Finale
Life's FinaleSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
65
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Text:
Destroy all creatures, then search target opponent's library for up to three creature cards and put them into his or her graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
: Awesome every time I drew it. I want another!
1 Naturalize
Naturalize
NaturalizeSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
275
Artist:
Ron Spears
Text:
Destroy target artifact or enchantment.
: I have to have a better set of answers to artifacts/enchantments. I’m in green, there’s no reason that I can’t answer those if I want to.
2: Acidic Slime
Acidic Slime
Acidic SlimeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Ooze
Rarity:
U
Number:
165
Artist:
Karl Kopinski
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Deathtouch (Creatures dealt damage by this creature are destroyed. You can divide this creature's combat damage among any of the creatures blocking or blocked by it.) When Acidic Slime enters the battlefield, destroy target artifact, enchantment, or land.
: SLIMER! Okay, so he doesn’t fly, but that’s really the only bad thing about this guy. Slimer gives me a versatile answer to artifacts, enchantments, or LANDS. If it hasn’t come through in what I wrote before, artifacts are starting to be irksome. It does cost 5, but kill that PLUS the rattlesnake effect of a deathtouch guy seems to be okay for my deck. Also, it lets me say Nice. Batterskull
Batterskull
BatterskullSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
5
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
M
Number:
130
Artist:
Mark Zug
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +4/+4 and has vigilance and lifelink. {3}: Return Batterskull to its owner's hand. Equip {5}
. SLIMED!
1 Spider Swarming: Remember those problems I was having with swarms? Well, I want my own swarm! And the flashback is directly in my colors, so who doesn’t like that? Nobody, that’s who! Well, except Essa Rios, but he doesn’t count.


My updated decklist
Lands
23 Swamp
Swamp
SwampSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add B to your mana pool.
s and Forest
Forest
ForestSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add G to your mana pool.
s.
Creatures
1 Typhoid Rats
Typhoid Rats
Typhoid RatsSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat
Rarity:
C
Number:
120
Artist:
Kev Walker
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Deathtouch (Any amount of damage this deals to a creature is enough to destroy it.)

2 Ambush Viper
Ambush Viper
Ambush ViperSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Snake
Rarity:
C
Number:
169
Artist:
Alan Pollack
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flash (You may cast this spell any time you could cast an instant.) Deathtouch (Any amount of damage this deals to a creature is enough to destroy it.)

1 Jade Mage
Jade Mage
Jade MageSet: Magic 2012
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Shaman
Rarity:
U
Number:
181
Artist:
Izzy
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
{2}{G}: Put a 1/1 green Saproling creature token onto the battlefield.

2 Reassembling Skeletor
2 Festerhide Boar
Festerhide Boar
Festerhide BoarSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Boar
Rarity:
C
Number:
179
Artist:
Nils Hamm
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Trample Morbid — Festerhide Boar enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters on it if a creature died this turn.

2 Acidic Slime
Acidic Slime
Acidic SlimeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Ooze
Rarity:
U
Number:
165
Artist:
Karl Kopinski
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Deathtouch (Creatures dealt damage by this creature are destroyed. You can divide this creature's combat damage among any of the creatures blocking or blocked by it.) When Acidic Slime enters the battlefield, destroy target artifact, enchantment, or land.

2 Bloodgift Demon
Bloodgift Demon
Bloodgift DemonSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
R
Number:
89
Artist:
Peter Mohrbacher
Power:
5
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying At the beginning of your upkeep, target player draws a card and loses 1 life.

2 Hollowhenge Scavenger
Hollowhenge Scavenger
Hollowhenge ScavengerSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
U
Number:
188
Artist:
Slawomir Maniak
Power:
4
Toughness:
5
Text:
Morbid — When Hollowhenge Scavenger enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, you gain 5 life.

2 Morkrut Banshee
Morkrut Banshee
Morkrut BansheeSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
U
Number:
110
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Morbid — When Morkrut Banshee enters the battlefield, if a creature died this turn, target creature gets -4/-4 until end of turn.

1 Somberwald Spider
Somberwald Spider
Somberwald SpiderSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spider
Rarity:
C
Number:
202
Artist:
Volkan Baga
Power:
2
Toughness:
4
Text:
Reach (This creature can block creatures with flying.) Morbid — Somberwald Spider enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters on it if a creature died this turn.


Non Creatures
2 Life's Finale
Life's Finale
Life's FinaleSet: New Phyrexia
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
65
Artist:
Svetlin Velinov
Text:
Destroy all creatures, then search target opponent's library for up to three creature cards and put them into his or her graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.

1 Spider Spawning
Spider Spawning
Spider SpawningSet: Innistrad
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
203
Artist:
Daniel Ljunggren
Text:
Put a 1/2 green Spider creature token with reach onto the battlefield for each creature card in your graveyard. Flashback {6}{B} (You may cast this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then exile it.)

1 Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail Hauberk
Demonmail HauberkSet: Innistrad
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
U
Number:
221
Artist:
Jason Felix
Text:
Equipped creature gets +4/+2. Equip—Sacrifice a creature.

2 Bonehoard
Bonehoard
BonehoardSet: Mirrodin Besieged
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Sub Type:
Equipment
Rarity:
R
Number:
100
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Living weapon (When this Equipment enters the battlefield, put a 0/0 black Germ creature token onto the battlefield, then attach this to it.) Equipped creature gets +X/+X, where X is the number of creature cards in all graveyards. Equip {2}

2 Naturalize
Naturalize
NaturalizeSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
275
Artist:
Ron Spears
Text:
Destroy target artifact or enchantment.

3 Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Doom BladeSet: Magic 2010
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
93
Artist:
Chippy
Text:
Destroy target nonblack creature.

3 Altar's Reap
Altar's Reap
Altar's ReapSet: Innistrad
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Text:
As an additional cost to cast Altar's Reap, sacrifice a creature. Draw two cards.

2 Rampant Growth
Rampant Growth
Rampant GrowthSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
246
Artist:
Tom Kyffin
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card and put that card into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.

2 Dead Weight
Dead Weight
Dead WeightSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
C
Number:
96
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Text:
Enchant creature Enchanted creature gets -2/-2.

2 Caravan Vigil
Caravan Vigil
Caravan VigilSet: Innistrad
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
173
Artist:
Drew Baker
Text:
Search your library for a basic land card, reveal it, put it into your hand, then shuffle your library. Morbid — You may put that card onto the battlefield instead of putting it into your hand if a creature died this turn.



I think that's enough for this time around. I've got one more point that I'd like to make, and then we'll wrap this up. I touched on this in the forums for the last article, and I think that I'd like to get it out there to everyone (every two? Every seven?) that is reading my article. One of the things that I really liked about the JMS articles originally was that there was a lively back and forth in the forums for the article. JMS and his forum people would carry on the conversation throughout the week and it would give feedback for JMS. Obviously, I won't get 12387 pages worth of forum conversation going on with these articles (I'm just not that good of a writer) but I would love to see conversations taking place in the forums about the decklist. Possible inclusions, possible directions that you would take the deck, alternate decklists, what you would do with the deck or some idea within the deck.

Follow me @RodneyHines, or e-mail me at ThatGuyRodneyAThotmail.com, or (best) talk to me on the forums! I'm "Tellah", in honor of the greatest mage to ever wear purple robes.

See you next time, you spoony bards!


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