Tuesday, April 17, 2012

More about the Swamp King

Ben asked what the deal was with Sol'kanar. How does he fit into the deck?

Basically, he is a demon that lets me play the colors that I like. I'll probably pick up a copy of Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth for fun "swampwalk" tricks, but that's not a theme of the deck.

The deck theme (Demons!) is playable in mono-black, just not with Sol'kanar. If I do that, I lose some of the deck manipulation being provided by blue. The red isn't adding much at this point. I can really supercharge the mana in a mono-black deck. That's something I will try in the future.

The deck runs Painful Quandary. I like this card. It's interesting and in-theme. I think of demons as forcing people make tough choices. I also agree with Chris when he said that it is "brutal." If it shows up too often, I'll take it out. The Commander format requires balance: if your deck is too strong for the table, it's no fun for anyone. That's why themes are so important to me. It helps me to limit my card selections to ones that I might not otherwise use because there are other, stronger options.

Chris is working on a Kaervek, the Merciless deck. When he gets the mana to cast that guy, I know I have to have removal or a fast clock starts right there. It's good. I enjoy the "pressure" that this commander puts on table. Sol'kanar doesn't apply pressure in the same way. But he does look like a poster I might have had in my bedroom as a teenager. :)

Sunday, April 15, 2012

The Swamp King

Check it out! The Swamp King

Here is the first version of the deck. Thank you to Chris for playtesting with me a few games!

The mana worked out okay. I was able to get all three colors and cast Sol'kanar regularly on the 5th turn. Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth would be good here since it turns lands into swamps that the King can use to walk over. Painful Quandary is always a good time. I've had a copy of Breathstealer's Crypt in my collection for a long time (since Visions!), but I've never had a chance to use it. It showed up in one game during playtesting and I thought that it fit the theme of this deck well.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

And now back to Demons

I picked up Sol'kanar the Swamp King from the English Legends set. He's the only legendary demon that allows me to play Blue, Black, and Red (UBR) cards. So, I'm getting the old band back together with a few changes.

I'll probably downplay the time walks and creature steal this time around. Plus, I picked up a copy of Hellfire. Not only is the artwork awesome and in-theme for this deck, but there's something cool about playing Hellfire and Damnation in the same deck. In addition, I found a home for Elbrus.

What got me excited about going back to demons is the partial spoiler for Avacyn Restored. Griselbrand looks like a good time along with a few other demons in black.