Mono Black Control (MidRange)

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Mono Black Control
Introduction



***Note that this post is under heavy reconstruction with rotation of Zendikar block***

What is Mono-Black Control (MBC)?

It is basically an attrition-style control deck that is based on using removal, disruption, and CA to run opponents out of steam, at which time you drop threats that are "too hot to handle". Black is generally a color that works off the mage in exchange for faster advantages. Cards like Sign in Blood and Bitterblossom (historically speaking) are two shining examples. For 2 mana you gain 2 cards, but you have to give 2 life in exhange and for 1 life every turn during your upkeep you gain a 1/1 flying token. Very great advantages at a small price.


MBC in the Current Environment

MBC is still a rogue deck, but it can run a sick amount of 2 for 1s and will always put a foot on the head of aggro.

Will it be able to interact meaningfully with Solarflare and Birthing Pod decks?



Good Cards you Should Consider

Maindeck Worthy:

Spells:
Doom Blade - Terror, but it hits Artifacts. Awesome in the current meta and should be potent in the upcoming set.

Go for the Throat - Kills anything but artifacts. Pretty awesome at times.

Creatures:
Grave Titan - 10 power, 6 mana, 3 bodies. Makes more bodies if you untap with him. Zoinks.

Phyrexian Rager - gray ogre + card is often just fine.

Skinrender - Flametongue kavu for critters.

Wurmcoil Engine - Lifegain and self contained recursion is pretty good.

Moriok Replica - Can act as Sign in Blood 5-8 if you have slots or need the draw.

Phyrexian Revoker - Pithing needle is cool, on a creature not so much. Still can be useful to build tempo.

Misc:

Cards for your sideboards:




Thanks to:
Past MBC thread contributors (such as TheBanshee, myself)

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2011 States Top 4
Multiple 2013 IQ Top 4/8 Finishes
Designer of Top 8 States finishing MBC decks in 2011, 2010, and 2009 
Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

(This is where I put my current deck list)

Note that I'm still making decisions on Smallpox  based decks or trying an artifact heavy build so I can Kuldotha Forgemaster  for my Lashwrithes and Spine of Ish Sahs.

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2011 States Top 4
Multiple 2013 IQ Top 4/8 Finishes
Designer of Top 8 States finishing MBC decks in 2011, 2010, and 2009 
Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

Yay new thread, and just as M11 gives us very relevant cards.
Niche, could you post a list that you would take to a larger tournament? I'm also assuming this list splashes green for pulse.
Actually I'm going to post a pure mono black list running tendrils and corrupt first.

I've been going off on wild tangents since my M11 cards came in the mail and I need to focus on what I do best so I can win in Atlanta this weekend.

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2011 States Top 4
Multiple 2013 IQ Top 4/8 Finishes
Designer of Top 8 States finishing MBC decks in 2011, 2010, and 2009 
Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

4x Tendrils of Corruption
3x Consuming Vapors
3x Doom Blade
2x Consume the Meek
2x Corrupt
2x All is Dust
4x Sign in Blood
4x Pithing Needle

3x Vampire Hexmage
4x Gatekeeper of Malakir
3x Grave Titan

Tested this yesterday.  It did well, actually, but I'm not sure about Consume the Meek.  Some games it saves my a**, others It's a dead card.  I could probably move it to the sideboard, in which case I'd probably throw in 2 Fleshbag Marauders?  I duno...but the list is pretty rough.  

Grave Titan needs to be in these lists though.  He's the strongest creature in standard currently.  I'm serious.  He's so stupid.  I've been testing him in two lists;  this one, and a W/B list, and in both of them if he resolves, unless they wrath immediately it's game.  

He's SO.
so.
dumb.

EDIT** OH, and just so you know, I had duress in here originally, but I've been running into nothing but aggro decks running both Vengevine and Obstinate Baloth, along with tons of dudes, so I sort of ditched it.  Were I to take this to a large event, I'd definitely have it in the main deck to hold off control.  

Thought i'd throw it out there. 

"Meow Meow Meow I'm a kitty GAIN 100 LIFE." - Some genius

No nantuko shade?
He's good in every mono black/black based deck. He's a 2 drop 2/1, can swing as a 5/4 if necessary t3, and is a late game finisher if you topdeck him. He's never useless/irrelevant.
Also, do you really need 4x pithing needle main? Are they useful outside of planeswalker hate (which you already have MD hexmage for)?
Would also like to see 1 more corrupt.
Pithing needle has been necessary up to this point.  If they cease to be useful then I'd love to ditch them...honestly I don't like running them mainboard, but I NEED to.  There are just so many planeswalkers absolutely everywhere.  In every deck.

There isn't a single one where Walkers aren't rampant in them.  Sort of annoying at this point.  Hexmage isn't enough, not even close to enough, to hold off the numbers of Jace, Gideon, and Elspeth running around.  They also shut down Fauna Shaman and Manlands, off the top of my head. 

To fit shade I'd have to ditch removal, and my list is more of a control list, not so much midrange, and not at all aggro.  I feel like a lot of people are getting carried away with shade anyway.  Not to say he isn't a great card, because he's awesome, but he doesn't need to go into every Mono Black list by any means.  

He's sick in aggro and great in midrange, but he takes up slots in control.  Just my two cents.

"Meow Meow Meow I'm a kitty GAIN 100 LIFE." - Some genius

Fair enough arguments. I think i'm currently in a mid-range mindset myself where the shade shines.
The shade is an absolute monster in mid-range.  You definitely can't go wrong with him there.  

You know.

I've actually been thinking about making my sideboard sort of a completely different strategy.  As in, pre-board I'm control, and post board I'm aggro/midrange.  

Any chance that could work?

Like, having Shade, Ob, Percy, Ghast, and Lich in the board?  It could throw off the opponent in games 2 and 3.  Maybe.....

Or I'm just dumb. 

"Meow Meow Meow I'm a kitty GAIN 100 LIFE." - Some genius

That's something Banshee used to harp on doing during Fae's dominance.

I'd need to see the battleplan and list to comment more specifically.

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2011 States Top 4
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Designer of Top 8 States finishing MBC decks in 2011, 2010, and 2009 
Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

Big mistake by choosing not to play nantuko shade. He's one of the best black creature at the moment. You can play him early as a removal shield for your titan and if he stuck around he'd be a beast later on. Definitely move your needles to SB and mainboard the shades.
Alright. I decided to stop trying to work Persecutor and Lich into decks at the moment.

Instead, I focused on just playing stand alone powerful cards that require no effort to build around.

Here's where I ended up:

// Lands
    2 [WWK] Tectonic Edge
    23 [DDC] Swamp (3)


// Creatures
    4 [M11] Nantuko Shade
    3 [M11] Grave Titan
    4 [ZEN] Vampire Hexmage


// Spells
    1 [M11] Haunting Echoes
    2 [M11] Liliana Vess
    1 [ROE] Consume the Meek
    4 [M10] Tendrils of Corruption
    3 [M11] Corrupt
    3 [M11] Brittle Effigy
    2 [M11] Crystal Ball
    4 [M11] Doom Blade
    4 [M11] Sign in Blood


// Sideboard
SB: 3 [M11] Duress
SB: 2 [ZEN] Marsh Casualties
SB: 3 [M11] Leyline of the Void
SB: 4 [M11] Deathmark
SB: 3 [M10] Pithing Needle

Discuss in any way whatsoever.

This is built to attack planeswalkers and all the WGr or WGu colored aggro lists. Jund is pretty shaky, but I'm less and less worried. I don't even give them much of a nod in the sideboard, just Deathmarks to flip for Doom Blades.

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2011 States Top 4
Multiple 2013 IQ Top 4/8 Finishes
Designer of Top 8 States finishing MBC decks in 2011, 2010, and 2009 
Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

I was looking for some synergy with the new cards.
Made a sort of decklist, with explanation next to the cards
general idea is: play mid range aggro black
with card advan
how about:
20 swamp
4 fetchlands (if 2 expensive cards are on top with dark Tut in play.

Basilisk Collar for the lich
Crystal Ball for the lich and the tutelage
Dark Tutelage card adv.
Tendrils of Corruption - draw-pay life - remove threat - gain life 
mind sludge - on of most expensive card, be carefull in combination with dark tut.
corrupt - possible finisher
2 doom blade
2 disfigure


Gatekeeper of Malakir- shroud big creatures
2 vampire hexmage - vs planeswalkers
2 black knight vs white
2 bloodghast 
Nantuko Shade heavy hitter
Phylactery Lich heavy hitter and stayer

SB
2xblack knight
4x leyline ot void
4x death mark
1xmarsh casualties
4x duress
 

decklist is not complete (can't view my deck right now)
 
your opinions please.
regards Bohr 
Alright. I decided to stop trying to work Persecutor and Lich into decks at the moment.

Instead, I focused on just playing stand alone powerful cards that require no effort to build around.

Here's where I ended up:

// Lands
    2 [WWK] Tectonic Edge
    23 [DDC] Swamp (3)


// Creatures
    4 [M11] Nantuko Shade
    3 [M11] Grave Titan
    4 [ZEN] Vampire Hexmage


// Spells
    1 [M11] Haunting Echoes
    2 [M11] Liliana Vess
    1 [ROE] Consume the Meek
    4 [M10] Tendrils of Corruption
    3 [M11] Corrupt
    3 [M11] Brittle Effigy
    2 [M11] Crystal Ball
    4 [M11] Doom Blade
    4 [M11] Sign in Blood


// Sideboard
SB: 3 [M11] Duress
SB: 2 [ZEN] Marsh Casualties
SB: 3 [M11] Leyline of the Void
SB: 4 [M11] Deathmark
SB: 3 [M10] Pithing Needle

Discuss in any way whatsoever.

This is built to attack planeswalkers and all the WGr or WGu colored aggro lists. Jund is pretty shaky, but I'm less and less worried. I don't even give them much of a nod in the sideboard, just Deathmarks to flip for Doom Blades.




Looked like a strong MBC list but no gatekeeper? That's one of our strongest removal don't you think?

What do we need the Gatekeeper for?

With Effigy, nothing. And against a few important matchups the Gatekeeper just eats a bird, or a thrinax, or a goblin token... or an eldrazi spawn. He's pretty feeble when decks aren't just running out bomb after bomb. Hell, imagine how bad he is vs. Grave Titan.

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2011 States Top 4
Multiple 2013 IQ Top 4/8 Finishes
Designer of Top 8 States finishing MBC decks in 2011, 2010, and 2009 
Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

What do we need the Gatekeeper for?

With Effigy, nothing. And against a few important matchups the Gatekeeper just eats a bird, or a thrinax, or a goblin token... or an eldrazi spawn. He's pretty feeble when decks aren't just running out bomb after bomb. Hell, imagine how bad he is vs. Grave Titan.



Well in my deck he clears the path for the shade on turn 3 but you're right late game he's only useful to get rid of persecutors. The good thing about him is that he's also a chump blocker though.

What do we need the Gatekeeper for?

With Effigy, nothing. And against a few important matchups the Gatekeeper just eats a bird, or a thrinax, or a goblin token... or an eldrazi spawn. He's pretty feeble when decks aren't just running out bomb after bomb. Hell, imagine how bad he is vs. Grave Titan.



Well in my deck he clears the path for the shade on turn 3 but you're right late game he's only useful to get rid of persecutors. The good thing about him is that he's also a chump blocker though.




Or he just turns on BBE cascade into removal quite often. My favorite way to play Jund used to be play nothing until after they cast BBE on 4. =)

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2011 States Top 4
Multiple 2013 IQ Top 4/8 Finishes
Designer of Top 8 States finishing MBC decks in 2011, 2010, and 2009 
Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

What do we need the Gatekeeper for?

With Effigy, nothing. And against a few important matchups the Gatekeeper just eats a bird, or a thrinax, or a goblin token... or an eldrazi spawn. He's pretty feeble when decks aren't just running out bomb after bomb. Hell, imagine how bad he is vs. Grave Titan.



Well in my deck he clears the path for the shade on turn 3 but you're right late game he's only useful to get rid of persecutors. The good thing about him is that he's also a chump blocker though.




Or he just turns on BBE cascade into removal quite often. My favorite way to play Jund used to be play nothing until after they cast BBE on 4. =)



Speaking of jund I have to do more testing with effigy. I'm going to use that play too against jund, make them waste their cascaded removal :p

I like the Haunting Echoes in your list Niche.

Sometimes I forget that card exists.  Soooooooort of useful right now probably... 

"Meow Meow Meow I'm a kitty GAIN 100 LIFE." - Some genius

Alright. I decided to stop trying to work Persecutor and Lich into decks at the moment.

Instead, I focused on just playing stand alone powerful cards that require no effort to build around.

Here's where I ended up:

// Lands
    2 [WWK] Tectonic Edge
    23 [DDC] Swamp (3)


// Creatures
    4 [M11] Nantuko Shade
    3 [M11] Grave Titan
    4 [ZEN] Vampire Hexmage


// Spells
    1 [M11] Haunting Echoes
    2 [M11] Liliana Vess
    1 [ROE] Consume the Meek
    4 [M10] Tendrils of Corruption
    3 [M11] Corrupt
    3 [M11] Brittle Effigy
    2 [M11] Crystal Ball
    4 [M11] Doom Blade
    4 [M11] Sign in Blood


// Sideboard
SB: 3 [M11] Duress
SB: 2 [ZEN] Marsh Casualties
SB: 3 [M11] Leyline of the Void
SB: 4 [M11] Deathmark
SB: 3 [M10] Pithing Needle

Discuss in any way whatsoever.

This is built to attack planeswalkers and all the WGr or WGu colored aggro lists. Jund is pretty shaky, but I'm less and less worried. I don't even give them much of a nod in the sideboard, just Deathmarks to flip for Doom Blades.




Questions: how do you think this list would do against those destructive force lists that are starting to pop up? I'm anticipating that coming into my fnm meta for at least a couple weeks because a few have placed recently.
Also, should there be a 3rd tec edge? I thought 3 was the right number.
If you have no turn 2 play other than hexmage, and you don't know their deck yet, do you play it and risk losing the hexmage?
Finally, I really like the sideboard, but could we make room for underworld dreams for, as you roughly put it in another thread, hilariously neutering the most expensive card in standard.
I like the Haunting Echoes in your list Niche.

Sometimes I forget that card exists.  Soooooooort of useful right now probably... 




Not really. You want it to hit vengevine, yet most decks play in the manner where vengevine is only graveyard-removable at instant speed. Fauna shaman pitch vengevine, tutor up BBE, cast BBE. The Other issue I have with the list is only 4 spells in the maindeck that quality as removal at 2cmc or less.

Effigy is just bad. I don't know why people run it. People say it's useful for hitting hard-to-remove creatures like emrakul, iona, and ulamog. I would be more worried about winning before they can cast those fatties. Seriously, Effigy is the same mana investment as Iona's Judgement, with the minor benefit of being splashable and useable on turn 4. Not good enough, IMO. I would sooner run vapors or gatekeeper, or simply maindeck marsh casualties.

Photobucket
the deck looks awesome niche but do keep on ur liches everyone else here because from the vaults relics has sword of body and mind, not sure what it does yet but its mythic and in the relics so it must be good. Heck they might even finish the cycle
The cycle is likely only the 3 swords, spread out over each set in the block. Though it makes Stoneforge Mystic pretty scary.

Photobucket
I think one answer could be that if you know it's them (assuming it's the build running P-Titan), wait until they drop the titan and kill it right away.  At least that way they aren't out tempoing the hell out of you post Dforce.  

You'd also need to side in all Walker hate from the board....that's a problem.  Getting rid of their Titan doesn't mean anything if they've got a Gideon and Ajani V on the board post Destructive Force and we've got zero lands and nothing on the board.

If we threw down a Grave Titan then I doubt they'd want to play their Force, but that's hardly an answer to the deck in general.

I'll think about it and get back to this. 

"Meow Meow Meow I'm a kitty GAIN 100 LIFE." - Some genius


Not really. You want it to hit vengevine, yet most decks play in the manner where vengevine is only graveyard-removable at instant speed. Fauna shaman pitch vengevine, tutor up BBE, cast BBE.


At this juncture its ok to Doom Blade the vengevine in preparation for Echoes next turn. In reality a good player shouldn't suffer the fauna shaman to live to untap. 

 The Other issue I have with the list is only 4 spells in the maindeck that quality as removal at 2cmc or less.


That's fair. I asked for explicit feedback as the list was simply a conceptual jump off point with no build around cards in it. Smother could certainly add something to the deck.

Effigy is just bad. I don't know why people run it. People say it's useful for hitting hard-to-remove creatures like emrakul, iona, and ulamog. I would be more worried about winning before they can cast those fatties. Seriously, Effigy is the same mana investment as Iona's Judgement, with the minor benefit of being splashable and useable on turn 4. Not good enough, IMO. I would sooner run vapors or gatekeeper, or simply maindeck marsh casualties.


Those are the *ok* reasons to run Effigy. The better reasons to run Effigy for MBC is:
1. Vengevine
2. Sprouting Thrinax
3. Pro Black Creatures
4. Black Creatures we can't Doom Blade.
5. Sniping away fatties that hide behind mana dorks, saproling tokens, or eldrazi spawn. 
6. Man Lands that Consuming Vapors, Gatekeepers, and Marsh Casualties cannot touch. In reality it just keeps them deactivated because the threat of losing the fix is significant unless the opponent with the manland has basically already won the game.

You've simply failed to look at the bigger picture of what Effigy does for MBC. This makes your opinion almost as bad as everyone who says, 'zomg emrakul, iona how do u deeeel??!?'

Sure it does all that too, but to be frank I'd pay 5 mana for Unmake right now.

EDIT: Regarding Hexmage, if you don't know what they're playing, hold it back. This card isn't a beater, and is only defense when their opening is mountain, mountain. Then you run it out there. Otherwise it reads 'BB, Destroy target Planeswalker.' 

As far as the Destructive Force matchup.... I'll think on this and get back to you. The Planeswalkers won't stick around for too long here and as was already said if you kill their Titan Force is just a reset button. This isn't too brutal because you can untap and run out a Nantuko Shade to make them regret it. That said I'll see what technology can be brought to bear here. I'll think of something.

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2011 States Top 4
Multiple 2013 IQ Top 4/8 Finishes
Designer of Top 8 States finishing MBC decks in 2011, 2010, and 2009 
Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

Hey, niche, quick question: which would you put into your deck if you had the choice? Tendrils of corruption or Corrupt? im in the process of turning my vampire deck into a mono black control, and im kinda torn which i should put in.XD

it's not black, but all i could think of that might slow down titan force was mindlock orb.  apologies for not helping.....lol.

"Meow Meow Meow I'm a kitty GAIN 100 LIFE." - Some genius

Alright. I decided to stop trying to work Persecutor and Lich into decks at the moment.

Instead, I focused on just playing stand alone powerful cards that require no effort to build around.

Here's where I ended up:

// Lands
    2 [WWK] Tectonic Edge
    23 [DDC] Swamp (3)


// Creatures
    4 [M11] Nantuko Shade
    3 [M11] Grave Titan
    4 [ZEN] Vampire Hexmage


// Spells
    1 [M11] Haunting Echoes
    2 [M11] Liliana Vess
    1 [ROE] Consume the Meek
    4 [M10] Tendrils of Corruption
    3 [M11] Corrupt
    3 [M11] Brittle Effigy
    2 [M11] Crystal Ball
    4 [M11] Doom Blade
    4 [M11] Sign in Blood


// Sideboard
SB: 3 [M11] Duress
SB: 2 [ZEN] Marsh Casualties
SB: 3 [M11] Leyline of the Void
SB: 4 [M11] Deathmark
SB: 3 [M10] Pithing Needle

Discuss in any way whatsoever.

This is built to attack planeswalkers and all the WGr or WGu colored aggro lists. Jund is pretty shaky, but I'm less and less worried. I don't even give them much of a nod in the sideboard, just Deathmarks to flip for Doom Blades.




 I suppose I'd be fond of one Mind Sludge to tutor up, but it might not be worth it.

I'm uncertain about the two Marsh in the SB as well.  It's a great card vs mana dorks of course, but with only two the odds of getting one in the first 7-8 cards is pretty thin.  I'd be tempted to up it to 3 or not at all unless I'm missing some thing.  (don't say brain) :P

It seems the strategy against control is to shut down thier PW's and kill all their win cons.  That may not be bad considering discard may be nullified by the white leyline of doom any way.  Still; I'm used to running more discard against control, but that's proli just a reflex.

As much as I love the Lich, good idea to start off w/ stand alone hoss creatures. tho I am going to make a big effort to try to shove percy in my brainstorming.

I'm in the  SIB>DarkTut boat for all the reasons that spyritwind and others stated in the B/U midrange thread.

For Titan Force, Board in SadSac?

That's right Spyrit, the list is constructed under the assumption that discard is pointless so this is a rock life approach of destroy everything and see if you can stick it with a Grave Titan.

After a while staring at every black card legal in standard spread out before me on a table, I reached this update:

// Lands
    2 [WWK] Tectonic Edge
    23 [DDC] Swamp (3)



// Creatures
    4 [M11] Nantuko Shade
    3 [M11] Grave Titan
    3 [ZEN] Vampire Hexmage



// Spells
    2 [M11] Liliana Vess
    4 [M10] Tendrils of Corruption
    4 [M11] Brittle Effigy
    2 [M11] Crystal Ball
    4 [M11] Doom Blade
    4 [M11] Sign in Blood
    1 [M11] Corrupt
    1 [M11] Haunting Echoes
    1 [ROE] Consume the Meek
    1 [ZEN] Sorin Markhov 
    1 [M10] Pithing Needle 



// Sideboard
SB: 1 [ZEN] Marsh Casualties
SB: 3 [M11] Leyline of the Void
SB: 4 [M11] Deathmark
SB: 1 [M10] Pithing Needle
SB: 2 [M11] Royal Assassin
SB: 1 [M10] Underworld Dreams
SB: 3 [ZEN] Grim Discovery

So that's it. I wracked my brain on Destructive Force but all we've got is Grim Discovery which isn't that exciting... but that's why its a good deck. If you can't counter it you have to deal with it somehow. At least we can recover from it as needed. The real trick to this is treating it kind of like a Warp World deck. If you can control more permanents when they go to play they card you can lessen the blow a fair bit. It's that or pre-emptive discard... which is just terrible.

So stick to your guns of destroying their planeswalkers, killing the titan... and if they have no wincon in play Force becomes a panic button they really don't want to use. 

Regarding the changes in general I decided to lean on the tutor power of Vess more with every relevant silver bullet mono black has. Haunting Echoes, Pithing Needle, Consume the Meek, Corrupt, and Sorin Markhov in the main give you the ability to answer nearly any poor situation you can get yourself into... and from the board we've now got access to Underworld Dreams, more Needle, Marsh Casualties due to its power as turn 5 hit vs. Jund; these are all excellent 1 of tutor targets.

I'd forgotten the power of Royal Assassin vs. the Mythic matchup and it quite frankly cannot be denied.

Hit me with more feedback... I don't think I've missed any black card in standard. =) 

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Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

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I am working on a mono black deck right now and this what I have so far: (I am turning my B/W deck into a mono one to see how it does.)

Creatures:

4 Gate Keeper of Malakir
4 Black Knight
4 Vampire Hexmage
4 Vampire Nighthawk
4 Abyssal Persecutor
3 Ob Nixilis, the fallen

Spells:
4 Grim Discovery
4 Consuming Vapours
4 Doomblade of Smother can't decide which is better.
2 Consume the Meek

Lands:
4 Verdant Catacombs
4 Marsh Flats
15 Swamp

I like this list. I think it will win. It is just a minor change from my B/W deck which has been doing pretty nice at my local FNM's.  Thoughts or Criticisms?
What about a singleton Consuming Vapors in the board? At my shop there is a surpluse of control  based decks running the Shroud Sphinx, and I'm not sure if we can exactly race them if they drop it with keeping our Titan under control.
"The things you own end up owning you." -I am Jack's smirking revenge
What about a singleton Consuming Vapors in the board? At my shop there is a surpluse of control  based decks running the Shroud Sphinx, and I'm not sure if we can exactly race them if they drop it with keeping our Titan under control.



Sure, just wiggle it in there. Plenty of space in my suggested board for a 1x per your meta.

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"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

Regarding the Effigy analysis - regardless of how universal it is, it's a humongous tempo investment for spot removal, and block is fxcking hurting when it comes to the tempo game. I'd sooner maindeck casualties or vapors, since they have a greater chance of 2-for-1ing your opponent. Effigy is a niche answer to removal-resistant creatures. It screams sideboard material (it actually screams unplayable, but MBC getting access to a non-colored removal can be situationally useful).

To put it in perspective - Think of a situation where you opponent is ever going to dread seeing an effigy in play. Possibly a mass poly deck? Possibly mythic with a terrible back-up plan? That's pretty much it.

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Razor, you're entitled to your opinion, but the fact is no deck wants to walk their wincon out into an effigy on the table, unless they've got 2 right then and there. And being able to handle removal resistant creatures in a format defined by removal for the longest time is a big deal. I understand the balking at 5 mana, but it can be spread across 2 turns and as I said earlier... I'd pay 5 for Unmake now, let alone an Unmake that actually ignores pro black.

MBC has plenty of other 2 for 1s.... worrying about making every card a 2 for 1 isn't as critical as you may think. 

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"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

hey Niche, if you're running the tutor package, would upping vess to 3 be too much? I just think 2 of a card would be rare enough that you won't see it as often as you'd like.
Is there a reason you decided not to use Dark Tutelage + Crystal Ball? I use in my deck and find it to be more CA then sign in blood. 
I am White/Black
I am White/Black
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Is there a reason you decided not to use Dark Tutelage + Crystal Ball? I use in my deck and find it to be more CA then sign in blood. 



Legato, 3 Vess seems to often clog my hand.

Evincar, I'm still sorely tempted to flip the Signs out for Tutelages because they perform so powerfully. I am hesitant in my latest list however because I run quite a few cards with cmc >= 4. I'd test a version of mine that cuts the 4 signs for 3 tutelages and a 3rd crystal ball because that's a fairly potent interaction to abuse.

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Designer of Top 8 States finishing MBC decks in 2011, 2010, and 2009 
Standard Forum - Iron Deck Builder Season One Champ

Favorite Quotes

"Against logic there is no armor like ignorance." - Laurence J. Peter 
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes

Duress makes Dforce not hurt except in doubles, just a suggestion, and it hits planeswalkers.
Is there a reason you decided not to use Dark Tutelage + Crystal Ball? I use in my deck and find it to be more CA then sign in blood.



Legato, 3 Vess seems to often clog my hand.

Evincar, I'm still sorely tempted to flip the Signs out for Tutelages because they perform so powerfully. I am hesitant in my latest list however because I run quite a few cards with cmc >= 4. I'd test a version of mine that cuts the 4 signs for 3 tutelages and a 3rd crystal ball because that's a fairly potent interaction to abuse.



Fair enough, back in Zendikar I used to play with 3 vess and ocassionally she would clog up my hand, in additon to the mind sludge/nightmare/sorin I stuffed in there. And drawing a hand with 4 lands and 3 spells greater than 4 cmc made me sad.

Also, for tutelage, I am just of the opinion that since it hurts us, it's much more justifiable to play it against an empty board than one with more than just a single mana dork. Would it be better, then, to lower our 4cmc removal (vapors, tendrils) a bit to make room for more smothers, marsh, etc so that t3 we still have a significant amount of life rather than sitting at below 10.
Unless you wait to play tutelage/ball until later?
@Legatoblue

The thing about Dark Tutlage is that you use it with crystal ball so you can always put a land or some low cmc spell on top. That way you can use any kind of spells you want in your deck and not have to restrict yourself to lower cmc stuff. If you use it properly it shouldn't hurt you too much and in the long run it gives much more cards then sign in blood. I've rarely taken more then 2 damage from it in a single turn and most turns I often take no damage.
I am White/Black
I am White/Black
Take The Magic Dual Colour Test - Beta today!
Created with Rum and Monkey's Personality Test Generator.
I'm both orderly and selfish. I act mostly for my own benefit, but I respect and help my community - Specially when it helps me. At best, I'm loyal and dedicated; at worst, I'm elitist and shrewd.