Anje's Madness

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Post by ISBPathfinder » 1 year ago

Anje Falkenrath


Deckbuilding Concept - I have been tinkering with some different concepts for Anje and originally I was just going to put all the madness cards in a list and run it digitally against @Tryno digitally while we are all stuck at home. I showed him what I had and we started looking deeper into discard payoffs and the list started to come together. While crafting this my focuses were 1) Cards with madness 2) Value from discarding other cards 3) Answers that stop our deck from working (Pithing Needle was a real consideration).

The gameplan - As of right now is to see if we can piledriver our opponents with Glint-Horn Buccaneer, Brallin, Skyshark Rider, or Psychosis Crawler. We have a decent bit of graveyard recursion for an option here as well so something like Gravepurge could set them back up but it can also let us run through all of our madness creatures again as well which seemed interesting. If that doesn't work..... I guess we will be running at people with bad creatures lol.

Current Concerns - Pressuring our opponents feels great when we get one of our three pingers. But when we don't have them turning sideways with bad creatures is a lot more questionable.

This will potentially be a collaborative effort list with myself and @Tryno. I say that because he showed interest and was contributing while building the list but he has a tenancy to wander off from ideas before testing them. We will see how things go.

Decklist

COMMANDER (1)


PLANESWALKER


Approximate Total Cost:

Maybes:
  • Crucible of Worlds - It could be nice to not need to play my lands from hand. It would be a bit like having Squee in hand in that we can discard all the lands and play them from there.
  • Nihil Spellbomb - more grave hate options.
  • Mizzium Mortars - Sweeping out a bunch of the chaff and utility creatures can slow our opponents and this has the upside of being reasonable early before its a sweeper and not killing Anje.
  • Chromatic Orrery - It isn't cheap to cast but it almost pays for itself the turn it comes in. Fixing all color requirments is also kind of nice as a lot of our stuff is a bit color intensive on the madness costs.
  • Gamble - I like the cost and the discard part of this effect is actually a bit more interesting with the madness cards in our deck. I didn't really think about this until recently so I guess I need to give it a bit more thought but I think I like this tutor over like the three mana ones I could run.
  • Forks - Given that the deck is sort of a draw / go style of deck we could run some forks. I think Fury Storm is the one that stands out to me as the best potential one. I don't know if I really want to get into this because I feel like for the most part I would want to do this on opponents effects which is hard to rely on. Still..... getting like 2+ Cultivates does sound real spicy....
  • Neheb, Dreadhorde Champion - I really love his effect, I just think that realistic, he is slow and we can't really do much to make him work better. We don't really give haste or flash and there is no reanimation to play. I worry that he will feel slow and clunky in the 99 here.
  • K'rrik, Son of Yawgmoth - The mana tempo is kind of tempting. I don't have a lot of life recovery is I guess a bit of my concern.
Last edited by ISBPathfinder 5 months ago, edited 20 times in total.
[EDH] Sram (auras) | Bruna | Heliod | Sai | Naban | Anje

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Post by darrenhabib » 1 year ago

One of the big problems is flooding out, that is eventually you'll run out of madness cards and be mostly lands in hand.
Tectonic Reformation can help with this and specifically combining Surly Badgersaur to allow you to filter away any lands.
Bone Miser provides bb when you discard a land, so filters like Blood Celebrant and Prismite can be used in this way as well with Tectonic Reformation

Shadow of the Grave and Garna, the Bloodflame are other ways to bring back cards from graveyard.
Another cheap way to turn lands (or any non madness) back into madness cards is Restless Dreams.

Scheming Symmetry is as good as any other tutor as you are looking to combo in the same turn.

I would also run Reanimate as its a super cheap way to get any creature into play off Anje Falkenrath.

Songs of the Damned is going to help you cast cards like Footbottom Feast, Gravepurge, Bone Harvest when you want to combo off.

Wheel of Fortune seems like a must.

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Post by ISBPathfinder » 1 year ago

darrenhabib wrote:
1 year ago
One of the big problems is flooding out, that is eventually you'll run out of madness cards and be mostly lands in hand.
Tectonic Reformation can help with this and specifically combining Surly Badgersaur to allow you to filter away any lands.
Bone Miser provides bb when you discard a land, so filters like Blood Celebrant and Prismite can be used in this way as well with Tectonic Reformation

Shadow of the Grave and Garna, the Bloodflame are other ways to bring back cards from graveyard.
Another cheap way to turn lands (or any non madness) back into madness cards is Restless Dreams.

Scheming Symmetry is as good as any other tutor as you are looking to combo in the same turn.

I would also run Reanimate as its a super cheap way to get any creature into play off Anje Falkenrath.

Songs of the Damned is going to help you cast cards like Footbottom Feast, Gravepurge, Bone Harvest when you want to combo off.

Wheel of Fortune seems like a must.
Thanks for the well thought out response with some great ideas. I am going to start with my thoughts. Ultimately we still want this deck to not be an all in combo deck. I know that seems kind of crazy after I said that my plan is to put down pingers and go through my deck. The difference is I didn't really see myself 40ing my opponents in one turn. I assumed those would be pressure and do some work and that the recursion would help keep them relevant. To some level I expect to also play some of these crappy madness creatures to attack or defend with as well. We haven't gotten to testing and playing this list at all so its possible that if it ends up too combo tastic we might just bail on it. I just wanted to sort of set my level of expectations upfront because some of your ideas feel like the goal is to combo harder which I don't know is what our goal is right now. I talked to Tryno about your suggestions and wanted to get back on them.
  • Tectonic Reformation We had actually been concerned about accumulating too many lands. We started our land count lower at 33 assuming that our plan was to get to three lands. Its possible that number might also need to adjust but its hard to say until we get some testing in. Anyways, I like the idea of the Reformation.
  • Surly Badgersaur maybe..... every card that doesn't have madness sort of has some strict competition. Running roughly 40 madness cards and 33 lands only leaves some 25-30 remaining card slots. I can see the appeal of fighting every turn. I would like to get it in for some testing I am just having a hard time with what to cut to try him out. The fact that we do have creature recursion does sell me on him a bit. We will see what I can do maybe after some testing.
  • Blood Celebrant / Prismite we felt like there wasn't much of a reason to run these cards outside of a very narrow multi combo setup. They just don't do enough on their own and we don't really want to combo.
  • Shadow of the Grave Ooooooo I totally overlooked that. In my head it was tied directly to cycling cards only so I totally overlooked it. Yea thats a snap include.
  • Garna, the Bloodflame I think its a bit heavy on its cost is my main issue. Its true that it could draw a bunch of cards essentially but I think it just costs a bit too much and is a little narrow for it. I think at its best he follows up a Gravepurge type effect but I think it might be a bit narrow.
  • Restless Dreams I think it still competes with a lot of other effects. Like Cathartic Reunion for instance which ends up being a 3 for 3 effect. Its true that this card can move more cards but it also requires my graveyard to be filled up and not exiled not to mention being a card disadvantage card. I think it could work but I also think that it might be a little more for someone trying to dedicated combo which I don't think is where I am at right now.
  • Scheming Symmetry It feels like if I cast this card, I probably want and need to end the game right then. Its a little more all in than I want to be right now.
  • Reanimate If I had more targets that I wanted back it might be the way to go. I went through my whole list though and only counted roughly five targets that I actually felt I would want to Reanimate. I think that a reanimation plan is valid, I just don't have enough targets I am happy with for now.
  • Songs of the Damned it feels more all in than I want to be.
  • Wheel of Fortune yea I suppose I can give it a shot. If my hand goes to a bunch of lands it seems like a reasonable move.
DECK CHANGES:
  • Mizzium MortarsToxic Deluge Originally I was thinking about playing out more creatures than the new plan is. I think the flexability of Toxic is probably superior for the few spots of removal and it opens me up to tutoring a good wrath as needed.
  • PyroblastWheel of Fortune Time to give up on the blue hate. Originally I started with a plan to run more hate effects but slowly the gameplan of the discard has taken over and replaced most of my cool tech hate cards. Wheel helps if my hand bricks off which will happen.
  • Red Elemental BlastShadow of the Grave Shadow looks like a GREAT hand quality / size buff. Even if it just recovers a few cards its still an instant speed Sign in Blood which I am fine with given the ceeling of what it can do could be huge.
  • Street WraithTectonic Reformation I thought that cycling Street Wraith untapped my commander. I was wrong so I guess he can go. Tectonic Reformation looks like a sweet card that should help with drawing too many lands later.
Surly Badgersaur is kind of growing on me. I will keep an eye out for something to cut. I was less keen on it previously but its kind of a cool card the longer I look at it the more it grows on me.
[EDH] Sram (auras) | Bruna | Heliod | Sai | Naban | Anje

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Post by ISBPathfinder » 1 year ago

Ok, I did a BUNCH of test hands with Tryno trying to figure out some of this deck's goldfishing and how things were looking. After a lot of sample hands with some scrying the top to see what we were dealing with, I think I want to make a few adjustments to the landbase. I think I have more basics than I need and want to cut back on the colorless a little. I saw a few too many hands where I drew multiple of one type of basic with colorless lands and I just want to cut that back a bit for speed. Some cards also were looking a little clunky in said sample hands so I figured I would address them too.

DECK CHANGES:
  • Drownyard TempleLuxury Suite I think the tample is a cool card but it was hurting to opening hand it. Its cool but I don't really think I need much post commander ramp here so i figured that could go into being more fixing.
  • 1 MountainSulfurous Springs my only real incentive to run basics here is to have fetch targets beyond dual lands against nonbasic land hate. I don't see much nonbasic land hate so screw it, more fixing.
  • 1 SwampMana Confluence same as above. I think a little life loss in our lands isn't a big deal.
  • 1 MountainPrismatic Vista same as above.
  • Ulamog, the Infinite GyreSurly Badgersaur Ulamog was looking more awkward the longer I looked at him. I put him in originally as like, well if I draw my whole deck or if someone is playing mill but I think for now, its just not a big enough concern for me to run him. With some of the graveyard reloads being run there should be enough gas in the tank to get there. If someone is running heavy control with lots of grave hate I could be in trouble but lets respond to that rather than assume it will be the norm.
  • Squee, Goblin NabobChrome Mox Squee looks like value over time. But..... like its slow. There is also the question of if I won't just need to be ditching a land at the end of my turns to move them anyways so I think the reason to run Squee might be kind of unnecessary. Getting out commander out faster does seem appealing.
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Post by shermanido37 » 1 year ago

Psychotic Haze is written twice.

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Post by ISBPathfinder » 1 year ago

shermanido37 wrote:
1 year ago
Psychotic Haze is written twice.
Oh, so it is....

DECK CHANGE:
  • Empty Slot → Cathartic Reunion I realized that for the most part, I don't seem to be doing much before Anje but I also need to get to three lands. What I like about Cathartic is that it lets me keep a two lander with a bit more certainty. Later in the game I could see myself throwing two lands and drawing up some gas as well so it seems like its a card that should help both early and later.
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Post by ISBPathfinder » 1 year ago

Ok, I managed some mirror matches with Tryno and then managed to play this deck in a three player game. I need a lot more testing but so far I had a few takeaways from the games I had. First, the interaction of this deck is actually really sweet. Originally I wasn't thinking about how a lot of these weird bad madness cards were like, kind of interactive. The amount of creature interaction from the madness cards ended up being really good. I also realized that I need..... a LOT of mana with this deck. Recasting my commander can often cost me my entire turn and if she is disrupted early it can possibly mean I might not have the lands to replay her. I also, have not yet been land flooded with this deck surprisingly. I find that I want to play a land each turn and with my last cycle every turn I can throw out a card that doesn't have madness with my commander and that seems to be enough to control flood.

If I can get more mana it means I can cast more of the weird madness cards which gives more value from them or recast my commander or chain things together, in either case, I think I need to try to bring up the amount of mana I have access to. I also didn't see this deck just spinning up and firing off super fast so I am starting to view it a bit more as a control list than a combo list as I am playing it more. I need more games and testing but I have some changes I wanted to push through first.

DECK CHANGES:
  • AbradeVandalblast Abrade is a sweet card but I actually have a lot of creature interaction in the madness cards which feels like this becomes more of an artifact answer. I think at that point I should push it to be a tempo artifact sweeper type of card rather than just a Shatter. Lots of the value in Abrade is the versatility of the card. I just feel like I want the tempo of Vandalblast over it. I considered Shattering Spree instead but decided the red cost was a bit high to hit more than two targets with it so I think Vandalblast is where I want to be right now. Abrade is a sweet card, I just kept finding myself having a lot of creature interaction in the madness cards making me wish more for a tempo artifact answer.
  • Tectonic ReformationGilded Lotus its a bit early to say, but I haven't had land flood with this list yet. Maybe its because it hasn't been moving as fast as I thought it might in some of our cherry picked hand sort of situations but I find that I am fairly happy to have a land and one for the next turn and if I end up with significantly more than that, so far my commander has been able to fix that for me. I want to have a LOT more mana as it lets me cast some of the madness effects out. It also helps to recast the commander or do multiple action turns.
  • Bone MiserThought Vessel I am not convinced of cutting this guy, but holy cow I need more ramp first. Maybe in the future we can bring him back in but like, the zombies you get from him don't really feel worth it and we don't discard much for lands with this deck so it felt almost entirely based on ditching the nonland / noncreatures which when I drew him, I had to cycle him to the commander because I just didn't have the mana to cast him easily.
  • Illusionist's BracersMana Crypt Bracers are cool, but the commander seems to be a target for people and this was more overhead in getting her set up. I need more mana so lets make this swap for now.
  • Bone HarvestDeflecting Swat I did actually see an over redundancy in the Gravepurge effects and Bone Harvest is our worst of the three so I wanted to go down in numbers with them. I might be wrong in testing this but I felt like spot removal was more of an issue for my commander than sweepers were. The swat is kind of hilarious to send someone's removal spell back at them or somewhere else so I guess I can test it while I am still kind of in isolation and testing digitally.
  • Cathartic ReunionArcane Signet I want more ramp. Nothing wrong with Cathartic but I didn't feel like I really needed a lot more looting beyond the commander. I did need more ramp though.
  • Wheel of FortuneThran Dynamo I just didn't find myself burning out my hands or turning them into massive clumps of lands. I need more mana so I guess for now we make this swap and if I find myself gumming up my hands I will return to the wheel. Wheel makes a lot more sense if I were able to churn through my entire deck super fast which while its been good, it hasn't been that crazy yet.
  • Imperial SealEverflowing Chalice I found myself not liking the card disadvantage tutors. They were making my list feel more combo than I wanted them to and when I couldn't just push the fire up the cannon button they felt not great. We wen't down to just Vampiric Tutor in in part because Tryno was not going to obtain an Imp Seal and in part because I wasn't really feeling them but wanted to leave in at least one to continue to test them. Being a sorcery does make Imp Seal a little worse than Vampiric Tutor but, lets just see how having one does for now. I can always go back later depending on how things go.
  • Chrome MoxDrownyard Temple I do like having the commander early and often but I also didn't really find myself that much better off having her one turn early. I did cut the temple earlier for colored mana but this change brings my land count up and I think Temple as ramp might still be fine. Its a cool card so I guess I want to try it out again.
Its possible that we might return to some of these cards we cut but my biggest issue in my initial testing was that we didn't have anywhere near enough mana. Our land count seemed close to where I wanted it for now until I can test it more thoroughly but we definitely needed more ramp so that was my first goal. We will see where testing goes from here but I really need to hit testing harder but just can't get people to come together for games offhand lol.
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Post by Tevesh » 1 year ago

Not sure about your meta but I do think that Sword of the Animist does a lot work in these Creature shells. A friend of mine built an Anje; one of the things he did for value was a bunch of low costed reanimation effects because he could easily pitch them into the graveyard. Having a surprise Grave Titan or Massacre Wurm does work.

Geier Reach Sanitarium is a fairly low opportunity cost, though I find Rakdos to be especially punishing when it comes to colourless Lands - lots of Double or even Triple R/B.

I do think Faith of the Devoted would do work, even if it is just padding your life total but it can be used to drain people out. In the same vein, Tortured Existence might do a surprising amount of work for you if you use it to trade for Madness cards. But that was my buddy's build who basically churned through his deck to find the most efficient and mean Creatures around.

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Post by Tryno » 1 year ago

Tevesh wrote:
1 year ago
Not sure about your meta but I do think that Sword of the Animist does a lot work in these Creature shells. A friend of mine built an Anje; one of the things he did for value was a bunch of low costed reanimation effects because he could easily pitch them into the graveyard. Having a surprise Grave Titan or Massacre Wurm does work.
So @ISBPathfinder and I both, have a very strong love for Sword of the Animist. While Anje is the perfect mana cost for the sword, we both felt that giving her the sword would directly oppose the cycling gameplan we have currently. As such, we don't think we can justify the slot it would take. As far as reanimation, we acknowledge the synergy that is available from pitching large threats from hand, and cheaply reanimating, however it doesn't line up with what we are trying to do with this deck, which is to cycle through our deck as fast as possible, and then direct damage using the same method we use to find it.
Tevesh wrote:
1 year ago
Geier Reach Sanitarium is a fairly low opportunity cost, though I find Rakdos to be especially punishing when it comes to colourless Lands - lots of Double or even Triple R/B.
This deck is fairly mana color intensive, and we don't think that Geier Reach Sanitarium does quite enough. @ISBPathfinder being the repository of magic cards is aiming to add Bazaar of Baghdad, which is a more powerful version of what you have proposed. As for myself, I don't want to drop that much money on Bazaar, but still think that the colorless lands we have currently; fullfill a bigger requirement, than trying to unbrick our commander.
Tevesh wrote:
1 year ago
I do think Faith of the Devoted would do work, even if it is just padding your life total but it can be used to drain people out. In the same vein, Tortured Existence might do a surprising amount of work for you if you use it to trade for Madness cards. But that was my buddy's build who basically churned through his deck to find the most efficient and mean Creatures around.
This is where ISBPathfinder and I disagree a little. I think Faith of the Devoted, looks like a strong candidate for addition. Playing it cheaply, and then hitting people in the face for one mana, instead of trying to cast madness costs, sounds super awesome. I don't think it is as strong as some of the win conditions we are running, but this is on my short list for addition.

As far as Tortured Existence, this would likely fit the reanimator shell, a lot better than the cycle shell we are currently aiming for.

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Post by Tevesh » 1 year ago

Well %$#%, if he's got a Bazaar of Baghdad, go whole hog and skip the Sanitarium.

I played Faith of the Devoted in my Astral Slide Zur the Enchanter and it was one of the more frequent ways of winning the game. It got me a win when both Slide and Drake Haven had been Exiled. It's powerful at accidentally eliminating people and padding your life total. Though, to be fair, I did have Unfulfilled Desires powering it a lot of the time which Anje can fill-in for.

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Post by ISBPathfinder » 1 year ago

I am not sure either way on Faith of the Devoted. I think that our non madness / land slots are very few and I have a hard time making cuts is more of my issue. We still have almost zero grave hate in this list for instance and really the non madness / land slots only have something like 20-30 cards.
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Post by Tevesh » 1 year ago

ISBPathfinder wrote:
1 year ago
I am not sure either way on Faith of the Devoted. I think that our non madness / land slots are very few and I have a hard time making cuts is more of my issue. We still have almost zero grave hate in this list for instance and really the non madness / land slots only have something like 20-30 cards.
Oh, I definitely understand. Considering how much Madness cards you have in the deck, you'll be able to get to your important pieces fast and reliably. I was really surprised at how consistent the opposing Anje I faced was. So yeah, making cuts in this must feel more like a 60 card Highlander than a hundred.

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Post by ISBPathfinder » 1 year ago

Well, I did a few heads up games IRL against another guy who lives nearby this weekend. I just figured I would slide in an update on it. The first game was against Kykar, Wind's Fury. I got an early Glint-Horn Buccaneer following Anje and managed to stick him while fighting over Archfiend of Spite several times instead as my opponent was trying to use Coastal Piracy with a single token as I had killed his commander the first time.

I used a demonic tutor for Shadow of the Grave and used it to recur four cards with madness which was great.

The game was actually somewhat close. I didn't have an answer for his commander the second time and he managed to land Omniscience. As he was chaining things he went to Leadership Vacuum me while he was at like 15hp. I managed to move several cards bringing him down to 10 and managed to find and madness out Curse of Fool's Wisdom on him. He bricked off a bit after that while at 8 hp and just having a few cards left in hand and on my next turn I had the mana to attack and bring him to 1hp off of Glint-Horn Buccaneer's activated ability which then would kill him from the curse.

Overall with this game I would say that I felt like I land flooded a bit hard. I felt like every turn ended with me discarding a land with my commander while also hitting every land drop. The end of the game I had five lands in my hand when I went all in on Buccaneer. I did find some madness cards but overall it felt like I hit too many lands. Its something to continue to watch as it was game one after putting the deck together so its entirely possible it was just me having not shuffled very well.

Game 2:

It was up against Muldrotha, the Gravetide. We both had Sol Ring starts and he also had a Mind Stone. I did a turn two my commander and he did some version of Explosive Vegitation I can't name offhand. I turn three played Brallin, Skyshark Rider + Bag of Holding and he played his commander with a +/+ counter from a land. At the end of his turn Brallin into a 7/7 stocking up my bag of holding.

Turn four I lead off with Psychosis Crawler and attacking with my 7/7 Brallin, Skyshark Rider with Anje up to make me break his tie if he blocked. He let it through. On his turn he did some self milling and put up a few more blockers. I ended the turn putting another 4-5 cards away behind the bag. On my turn I popped the bag returning 8-9 cards to my hand of which I have at least 7 cards with madness and he is just dead to my pingers.



Offhand, I feel like I could use some more draw as I feel like sometimes I just need to inflate my handsize but I don't know what I want for that. The landcount is still something I don't know where I stand on but the mana ramp stones felt really good allowing me to pay for madness effects easier. Footbottom Feast and Gravepurge keep finding their way to my early hands which is a bit awkward. I am going to cut them a little slack for a little longer until I can get more testing in but I am starting to wonder if they are going to make my cut given that they seem to only really be helpful for going off and or resetting some of my key pieces. That all sounds great but I keep finding them upfront and cycling them with Anje which isn't as great. I will keep rolling and see if I can't get some testing with them.

Its also possible I might bring Imperial Seal back just for the Shadow of the Grave play as that was really solid card draw. The challenge is always what to cut for things. Faith of the Devoted is still also on my radar given how reliant I was both games on the damage pingers to get me there. I think I own a copy too given I did buy the Anje commander deck so its just a matter of tracking that down.
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Post by ISBPathfinder » 1 year ago

Ok, I got to play something like..... 10 hours of commander in the last two days. Fun times really. Overall I ended up playing Anje probably something like 5 times and saw her played by someone else at least twice. I won many of said games with a few losses sprinkled in but overall I would say the deck was performing well.

Some things based on where I am at and what I saw offhand:
  • Footbottom Feast / Gravepurge These cards have NOT been good. I have not yet been able to get a setup where they have contributed in a positive way yet. I keep thinking well give them a bit longer, my bit longer has run out. I don't like them. They are way too situational in that they need me to have anje, a payoff for cycling, and a bunch of creatures in hand and or grave with madness. They were bad and I am totally cutting them. I justified keeping them in part because they can help me recur some of the few payoffs in deck but honestly, I think I have enough ways to do that given how the deck has been playing and lots of said payoffs have fast acting returns to them. These cards just were not doing what I wanted them to do.
  • Kolaghan's Command - I actually cut it IRL for Faith of the Devoted and it seemed like I enjoyed Faith. I think Kolaghan's can be useful and maybe I can bring it back in but I guess really its sort of like having Smash in list with a little more versatility to it. That is sort of how I was feeling about Kolaghan's so.... maybe if I can make room later or feel I need it back I can make room.
  • Vandalblast - The overload is a huge pain in the ass. I just wasn't really loving this card. I feel like its one of those cards where it either does all the work or little to nothing and it depends a lot on the opponents and what they are doing as to what you get. It wasn't great for me any of the times I saw it.
Things I am thinking about offhand:
  • Homeward Path - I...... maybe didn't really take into account how commander centric I am and I got commander thefted one game. Similarly I could consider Sanctum of Eternity but I think its a distant second. I really want to get homeward in at the very least as a tutor target.
  • Draw - Honestly, I just felt like I needed some solid "draw some more card" effects. It sort of makes me consider looking back to Squee, Goblin Nabob but it might also just be some random Syphon Mind or Phyrexian Arena that I maybe need. When I was first theorycrafting this list I sort of expected that I was going to be killing players a bit faster than I do and some of the issue now is that I do want to hit my land drops out to 8+ mana and while I can move cards to madness its a bit of an art of what to move and when. Even then moving cards is a one for one thing. What I sort of need is something that gives me some positive hand size effect to really draw me 3+ cards. I considered Sign in Blood but really I think I need to maybe look at a few things that draw me more than two cards.
  • Mizzium Mortars - There were too many situations where what I wanted to do was like 3 damage to everything where Toxic Deluge and Fiery Confluence were a little awkward as they would kill my commander.
  • Faith of the Devoted - I added it in my IRL list for Kolighan's and I think that was a positive change for me as of right now. I will probably end up doing that in my list.
  • Insidious Dreams - So, giving it a bit more thought, this card might be literally insane. It can set up for a really sweet Shadow of the Grave play and you could also get really sick value with doing some Call to the Netherworld and Grave Scrabbler combined tactics. It also untaps Anje so...... god I think I need one of these.
I won't do anything just yet. I need to talk to @Tryno and talk about potential changes. He told me he ordered the cards IRL so I want to see if he has had a chance to do any testing as well as what he thinks. I would love to hear from anyone else on thoughts especially towards more draw / hand inflating stuff.
[EDH] Sram (auras) | Bruna | Heliod | Sai | Naban | Anje

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Post by Tevesh » 1 year ago

Since you've added Faith of the Devoted, that makes Leechridden Swamp easier to activate with Anje out. It gives your deck more reach, plus it is a Swamp that counts for Witch's Cottage. I also think the Malakir Rebirth // Malakir Mire is a no brainer but it might cut too deep into your Swamp count for Cottage. Right now, I don't know if these Spelllands count as Spells or Lands. Replace Crypt of Agadeem? I've yet to build a deck where Crypt actually pays off, though you probably have a decent experience considering you're dumping Creatures for it.

Right now I don't see a way for you to have a big finisher. The deck is designed to grind people out and I do like that game-play, but I've realized it leads to giving my opponents the opportunity to find an out. A big finisher might be what you're looking for, even if it is the boring Exsanguinate or Torment of Hailfire; though it could be something like Archfiend of Despair.

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Post by ISBPathfinder » 1 year ago

I wanted to talk generally of my thoughts on the spell / land zendikar cards quick. Without having tested them my thoughts are that there is a little bit of a tempo loss in them being ETB tapped lands or paying a little life for the mythics to enter untapped. This deck doesn't have a ton of life gain so its valid to assume there is a little negativity in paying some life for the untapped effect but I would generally say the always ETB tapped lands I would consider cutting about one land per two being added and the mythics that can pay life for them untapped as lands I would say its closer to one for one but I also don't love their effects. The fact that they can be an untapped land or those effect though makes it hard to pass on the mythics without testing them for me personally because I can see a case for both of the mythics to be useful effects in the right situation.

Zendikar Rising Review:
  • Agadeem's Awakening // Agadeem, the Undercrypt - So, I think if this card was just the front part, this card is not great. But given that its a land that can be tapped or untapped based on if I want to pay some life.... I think I am going to have a hard time not at least including and testing it. I have been feeling..... about right on 34 lands right now but if my card draw goes up it might be too many lands so I think adding these spell lands in could help me out as I have some plans to up my draw potential in this list.
  • Drana, the Last Bloodchief - I think this is a cool legend and having access to red for haste could be really cool. That said, I don't really think that most of our creatures are that valuable to rez.
  • Hagra Mauling // Hagra Broodpit I don't think a potential Murder is really that useful for me in this list. I will pass for this list but it could be cool for a deck that cares about casting instants.
  • Malakir Rebirth // Malakir Mire - I toyed with the idea of some protection effects. In the end, I think I am just not going to run any of these effects. I get that this could be a land instead but with my commander I can move any cycle card that I might not want anyways and it just hasn't been good enough.
  • Shatterskull Smashing // Shatterskull, the Hammer Pass I think the fact that it can be a tapped or untapped land based on my own decisions and it can also be a twin target removal probably marks it as good enough that I want to put in some testing for it.
  • Valakut Awakening // Valakut Stoneforge I LOVE the spell side of this card for this deck and it can also be a land. I do want to get my hands on this card.
Offhand, I think the mythic spell / lands are good enough that I will test them just sliding in for basic lands. I also want to get my hands on the red rare but assuming I bring in the mythics for basics I will probably need to find a non land to slide the red rare in for. Its still a while before this set lands and I can get my hands on the stuff so I will see if I can get some more testing in before I have to make any decisions there.
Tevesh wrote:
1 year ago
Since you've added Faith of the Devoted, that makes Leechridden Swamp easier to activate with Anje out. It gives your deck more reach, plus it is a Swamp that counts for Witch's Cottage. I also think the Malakir Rebirth // Malakir Mire is a no brainer but it might cut too deep into your Swamp count for Cottage. Right now, I don't know if these Spelllands count as Spells or Lands. Replace Crypt of Agadeem? I've yet to build a deck where Crypt actually pays off, though you probably have a decent experience considering you're dumping Creatures for it.

Right now I don't see a way for you to have a big finisher. The deck is designed to grind people out and I do like that game-play, but I've realized it leads to giving my opponents the opportunity to find an out. A big finisher might be what you're looking for, even if it is the boring Exsanguinate or Torment of Hailfire; though it could be something like Archfiend of Despair.
Leechridden Swamp - I just don't think I ever want to activate that ability to be honest.

Crypt of Agadeem - my IRL lands are really kind of randomly whatever I found. I probably need to clean up my list and do some more testing. So far, there have been a number of times where I do need a good bit of mana to pull off some plays. I need to do a bit more testing right now but I haven't actually gotten to test on it yet to really say.

Exsanguinate / Torment of Hailfire - I really am not a big mana deck so I probably wouldn't. I have played Exsanguinate before in decks where they really use up a lot of life as resource. I prefer to focus more on deck synergy and things that affect the board. I get that they can close out games but especially when I am not neccessarily building a big mana deck I don't think I can really justify them.

Archfiend of Despair - I think I would rather just have Pain Reflection but ultimately I don't really want that either because they are winmore cards that require you to have a setup that does something. I think if I get set up with what I want to do I am happy and even if it takes a little longer, I would rather focus on less complexity than throw in more. Of note though, I do need more flyers / flying defense which I will get in my changes but I thought it was worth mentioning on the flyer suggestion.



DECK CHANGES:
  • Deflecting SwatSquee, Goblin Nabob I love the idea of that GOTCHA of swat but I think ultimately I just don't worry about it. On average I feel like she dies 1-2 times in the course of a game and its really not been too hard to just recast her when it happens. I have been hurting for more hand size buffing effects and while I considered maybe Phyrexian Arena or something else I think I like squee a little bit more as of right now. I can discard him at the end of my opponents turns and return him at the start of my turn so on average I feel like I will know if they can catch him or not. Even if my opponents can catch him, he should probably at least give me one or two cards before he gets nabbed which is fine given I don't really need to ever cast him.
  • Footbottom FeastEntomb I kept justifying Footbottom Feast and Gravepurge as a means of closing out games but really...... it just hasn't worked for me yet. Without a payoff they have just been kind of bad. Needing to be fully set up before they seem decent has made me feel they are a bit winmore. Adding Entomb to this list gives me the option of card advantage or defense given both Squee and Stinkweed Imp. If neither of those cards are relevant I can still just ditch Entomb to the commander and move on. It seems like a great way to get a little more consistency for the deck.
  • GravepurgeStinkweed Imp similarly to above, I just needed to get out of Gravepurge. I realized that I didn't have much for flying defense which made it very easy to just repeatedly ship on me and force me to defend myself by going faster or killing all the flyers. I think bringing in stinky is good for this list and having entomb to get him as needed seems great.
  • Kolaghan's CommandInsidious Dreams I really went kind of hard on thinking about Pithing Needle effects lately for a list like this. I think they happen, I think I also probably want more tutors rather than more specific answers. For example I had Anje stolen one game and it was kind of hard for me to get her back. I think I need to probably come up with a priority order for Insidious Dreams targets but end of turn discarding into some madness cards on top followed by Shadow of the Grave seems like it could be a very strong six mana play.
  • VandalblastFaith of the Devoted I haven't been really getting as much out of Vandalblast as I had been hoping. Its one of those like does everything or does nothing sort of cards. I might move back to it in the future but the people I have been playing against in covid haven't been playing heavy artifact ramp strategies. Faith of the Devoted has helped me have more payoff cards and the lifegain on it is actually quite useful.
  • Arcane SignetCrypt Incursion I think two mana stones don't really fit this list that well in that they don't ramp into the commander and the total mana they push me up isn't really great either. I had been meaning to push in some more grave hate and I think the fact that Crypt Incursion has a big lifegain option is kind of a big option too. We could even hit our own graveyard to give us some suitability in a pinch with it.
  • Drownyard TemplePhyrexian Tower Drownyard just...... wasn't great. Its cool and I got to flip it into play once but it really wasn't that good. I also don't find myself having 2+ lands in hand that often for whatever reason which is really where you need to be for the temple to work. Phyrexian Tower can still give me ramp and especially with some of the cruddy little madness creatures its not that hard to sac one of those for more mana in the future since most of them only cost 2-3 mana to cast in the first place. More importantly though, we are sort of a draw go deck that cares a lot about our commander and a sac outlet can help vs theft, transform, or arrest effects. I like to plan for some bad things happening and ask myself how I get out of them and I like how little space Phyrexian Tower takes up but it serves a very important role which I think it makes sense to make room for.
  • Mana ConfluenceHomeward Path I think my fix is good enough for now. I don't like how confluence sort of always hurts me (exception being if I have urborg). Sulfurous Springs feels better to me given it has an option to just tap for colorless if I don't need the colored mana. When I first built this list I expected to have more of a glass cannon style of deck but the interaction of it is actually quite good which actually makes me feel like its a little more of a control deck now than I had originally thought of it.
Well, that was quite a list of changes. I will have to do updates and try to run it back (whenever that ends up working out). I think this list was doing quite well, offhand some of the glaring issues I was having was just having enough hand inflation and flying defense which I like where I went for some of that with this change. Lots of these changes were aimed at making it less of a one trick go off machine and something that could trade blows a bit better and longer which for me is a positive change.
[EDH] Sram (auras) | Bruna | Heliod | Sai | Naban | Anje

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Post by ISBPathfinder » 6 months ago

Ok, its been a while since I gave much of an update. I really didn't get much time to test in the last year and I have been building more new decks than I have been able to really do good testing for. I still got some games in with this deck here and there and my consensus has definitely been that I had an issue with maintaining hand size with this deck. I just flat out need more draw. I am going to have to do this a bit slowly just from the standpoint that I don't have that many card slots to this deck given how big the madness package is and I am not willing to budge on that. I found too often that my hand would get down to like 1-3 cards and I just didn't have enough ways left to inflate it back up. I do have some draw but it just was too infrequent and even with moving so many cards all the time I lacked the consistency to find it.

DECK CHANGES:
  • Everflowing ChaliceBone Miser Chalice wasn't ever really that impressive given it doesn't ramp me into Anje nor is it all that efficient as a larger mana stone. I needed to shift to more sources of card draw and I like that Miser is a threat and the payoff can be more or less immediate.
  • Thought VesselNecropotence I actually didn't think that necro worked with discarding but given how madness works you can stack it so you don't exile madness cards that you discard. I didn't previously think this was going to work but after having some other madness questions I actually sort of caught that it would work so I asked those questions here. I also am not really a graveyard deck so its not that hard to just not discard something super key. In a deck like this drawing up to 8 cards is usually fairly safe and I don't really need to hit my draw harder than that offhand.
  • Insidious DreamsWretched Confluence I tried dreams a few times but every time my hand size was just too dang small to make it work very well. You really need something like 4+ cards to make this card do much of anything as you still need to finish with discarding a card from Anje and I found a four card hand to be lacking with this. I like that Wretched can recover several non madness creature finisher effects for me but it can also be removal or some combination of draw or really just whatever I need at the time.
I also did bring in the mythic spell / land cards from previously but I forget what I cut to make room for them. I suspect offhand I cut some basics but I don't recall offhand for sure. I will see if I can get more updates on that soonish.
[EDH] Sram (auras) | Bruna | Heliod | Sai | Naban | Anje

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Post by ISBPathfinder » 5 months ago

Ok, its been a while and I have gotten some games in since my last update. This deck is really fun and I like how responsive it is which makes sense since its sort of a draw go concept. The biggest thing worth mentioning is that I am still having some issues with keeping hand size. That said, since my last update I have found Wretched Confluence a few times and it has been a great effect for me. I often default to returning 3 creatures to hand with it given that often its like one payoff and two madness creatures to ditch to Anje. That said its versatility still seems really good to me and while its removal isn't spectacular its definitely still a thing. I have yet to see Necropotence since adding it but Bone Miser has continued to sort of disappoint me as mostly I want the draw from him but I only get it with certain types of cards.

MH2 looks INSANE for this deck. I considered if I wanted to cut a bunch of cards for more madness ones but I think I am fairly close to critical mass on madness it just means I get to take out some worse madness cards for better ones mostly.

DECK CHANGES:
  • Rakdos CharmKolaghan's Command I went back and forth for a while on what I really wanted for my interaction. I still want artifact hate in my list but I think with seeing how well Wretched Confluence has been going lately I am going to shift back to a little value on top and get a creature recovery effect in on the action. Its a close call either way but with having still been having some issues keeping my hand size I need to make small adjustments to keep drawing where I can.
  • Bone MiserIllusionist's Bracers The upside of Miser is that it splits targets over multiple bodies instead of just loading all the priority on killing Anje. That said, I think the bracers have the more desireable effect assuming nobody stops me as I set up. I think Anje is always going to have a target on her face with this deck and its just something I have to get used to in this deck.
  • Stinkweed ImpKitchen Imp flying defense for flying defense. The imp totally sucks but it flies and has cheap madness. I haven't been having as much issue with flyers now that we are back at the LGS and out of playing small pod covid games once a month so I think moving my madness count up and sacrificing a superior flying blocker is ok for now. I can always go back I guess I just haven't felt like stinky is where I need to be lately.
  • Incorrigible YouthsNecrogoyf Its funny that I mention issues maintaining hand size then I add in another discard outlet. Still though, its a superior creature and I want to see if I can make it work or not. I think it could play really well with Squee as well so I guess lets just jam it in and see how it goes. I view this as an upgrade in quality of madness creature.
  • Insatiable GorgersRevolutionist another upgrade in quality of madness creature. Revolutionist isn't cheap but its a 2 for 1 which is something I have been needing more of in madness creatures.
  • Weirded VampireBlazing Rootwalla great improvement in creature quality. A 3/3 for 2B is just so bad I would much rather a free body over that.
  • Brain GorgersHell Mongrel giving opponents choices is usually bad. I often did get away with getting a 2 mana 4/4 but vs tokens or sac decks this can be a bad one to pay mana and not get anything from. The dog might not seem like much but getting another free discard outlet is actually huge for some tricks when people resond while Anje is tapped. There are also a few nice tricks it can do with some of the things that interact based on the number of cards you discarded this turn which is cool.
  • Abandon ReasonSkophos Reaver I don't think I can ever name a time I have cast Abandon Reason and that is enough reason to cut it for another creature now that I have options on what madness cards to run.
  • Alms of the VeinTerminal Agony as I was giving it more thought, Alms of the Vein while being cheap to cast really didn't do much of anything for me. Swinging 3 life off of a player once or adding it once for myself just isn't doing enough. More spot removal on the other hand.... I could totally go for that.
  • Faith of the DevotedFeast of Sanity the cost of paying for Faith every time just added up too much. I like the idea of a free trigger every time and I can go after creatures which I think is a big plus. I really look forward to seeing how this change goes even though its going to have less killing power I think it adds a lot of new diversity. Its also cool as if I could ever draw up a big huge hand and then have to discard them it triggers from that. Super funny interaction with Necroptoence too.
  • Ichor SlickTsabo's Decree cutting a madness card is always tough but Ichor Slick is REALLY bad lol. I added another madness card above so cutting one is probably ok. I didn't really think of adding Tsabo's earlier but I do have some issues against swarm concepts and it also helps against tribal concepts which is nice. Its instant speed so I can sit back and wait for them to turn on me and I really like having something like this up my sleeve.
  • Canyon SloughShatterskull Smashing // Shatterskull, the Hammer Pass I like having the spell land option. This one is nice giving me some non anje removal but also a land if I need it.
  • Witch's CottageAgadeem's Awakening // Agadeem, the Undercrypt Cottage is just to topdeck which while not terrible I value the spell lands a touch more than a successful cottage.
  • Reliquary TowerThawing Glaciers I haven't had enough hands where I go significantly beyond maximum hand size in this deck and usually when I do have them I am often winning off of them. Thawing Glaciers is kind of weird and slow but its a way to sort of give me additional lands to hand over time. It helps make land drops late into the game and sort of inflates your hand by giving you every other land to play saving you playing all of the lands.
I am sort of keeping an eye on Squee for now. There are times I have really loved him and times I really haven't. Originally I felt like I needed a package to include Entomb but I don't really know. My commander can filter but its hard to filter squee and entomb in the same turn obviously.

This set gave me so much give on madness cards its kind of crazy. We got to cut a LOT of bad ones for much better options where as before I believe there was like one madness card I wasn't using only because I saw no reason I would ever cast it. This set let me cut a lot of the less good madness cards for better ones. I had been running the spell lands for a while now and just forgot to update them to the list.
[EDH] Sram (auras) | Bruna | Heliod | Sai | Naban | Anje

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