Vampire Deck help

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Hello, again. I recently got some cards that inspired me to make a Vampires deck. So, here's my attempt at it:



Curve:
1:cccc ssss
2:cccc ssss ssss
3:cccc cccc cccc cccc
4:cccc cccc

Lord of Lineage for those who need it.

I'd like to keep this deck as cheap as possible, and so would like to get rid of Blood Crypt and Vampire Nocturnus since those add about $80 to the total price of this so far. I would also like to keep this standard-legal, just in case I decide to take it anywhere, and these cards are the easiest for me to get a hold of.

Just in case anyone wants to help with price, the store I go to sells commons for 25 cents, uncommons for $1, and rares for $1-$2, unless its a valuable card, at which point it'll be more expensive.

Any help is appreciated.
Step 1; Remove Typhoid RatsKnight of Infamy, and Village Cannibals - These are not vampires. I would suggest Vampire Lacerator, Pulse Tracker, Stromkirk Noble, Vampire InterloperFalkenrath Exterminator in these slots, depending on what you're going for.

Step 2; Replace Murder with Terminate. Up Dreadbore count. Toss Disentomb. Drop Vampire Nocturnus, he's more for mono black vampires, not R/B. A good replacement is Captivating Vampire and Rakish Heir.

Step 3; If it's in your budget or have access to trading - Acquire ~2 Olivia Voldaren & ~4 Falkenrath Aristocrat.

Step 4; Profit! I understand not all of my suggestions are Standard legal, but you can find equivalents.
 

PS: I think your local store is a little over priced. Commons should never be worth more than 5c, uncommons 10c, and junk rares 25c. Generally the cards worth $1-5 are competitive cards used in Standard format, and the things worth more than $5 are chase cards that are extremely good and highly sought after.
  
Words are like arrows, once loosed they cannot be called back.
I had the rats because they were the only good standard black 1-drops that worked at all, and I had the humans because I used to have more that wanted to sac them.



So I did:
[deck]
-4 Blood Crypt
-4 Typhoid Rats
-4 Knight of Infamy
-4 Village Cannibals
-2 Vampire Nocturnus
-4 Disentomb
-4 Murder

+2 Dreadbore
+4 Terminate
+4 Captivating Vampire
+4 Rakish Heir
+4 Falkenrath Exterminator
+4 Vampire Lacerator
+4 Rakdos Guildgate
[/deck]

I would like to add in the Olivia Voldarens and Falkenrath Aristocrats, but they're already pricey, and as you said, the store I go to is kinda expensive.

Also, would you mind checking if my lands will be enough? I'm never really sure...

I know the store is pretty expensive, but I got the impression that they aren't doing to great, and they're the only store I really have access to... I guess I'll just have to deal.
So are you or are you not trying to stay Standard legal? Terminate, Vampire Lacerator, and Captivating Vampire are all not Standard legal.
I know. Those are in there until I find standard replacements.

I think I might need to put back Murder, and use Stromkirk Noble, and maybe Dark Impostor, but I'm not entirely sure. Any Sugestions?
Stromkirk Noble is a definate. Vampires aren't very strong in Standard right now, and without the Noble, almost unplayable, as they are the only Standard-legal 1-drop vamp on the scene. And as such, kinda pricey, $-wise.

Dark Imposter is a fun card, but in a Standard environment, too slow. Easy to get in play, but it's activation cost is crazy. Not played in Standard much.

Blood Artist seems to be an auto-include in Standard vamps. Maybe Vampire Interloper if you wanna stick to pure aggro.

You might get better ideas if you put your deck in the Standard forum. But probably just a bunch of people telling you that vamps suck in Standard, and to go Zombies instead. Strictly speaking, the zombies are better, but that doesn't mean the vamps completely suck. I did just fine with a vampire deck a few weeks ago at a rather competitive FNM, although I can see the downfalls, and why ppl prefer zombies.
I'm liking Vampire Interloper over Blood Artist, but I'm not really sure.

I had mostly included Dark Imposter because its a 2/2 for 3 which has  late game purpose, though I suppose that since I do have a lot of ways to boost my creatures that isn't all that important.

I know that Vampires don't really have a strong Standard presence now, but I like them better than Zombies, and I'm not trying to be really competitive now anyways. I mostly wanted this one to be Standard-Legal so that I'd have a deck that I could play if I ever went anywhere that required it. Thanks for the suggestions though. I'll consider putting it into the Standard forum.
Oh, I hope you didn't think I was trying to talk you out of playing the vamps. I'm VERY much for playing what you WANT and making it work. That's why I said what I said about the FNM thing. I saw top deck archtypes all night, and yet I made top 4 with the vamps that the community will tell you sucks. What's the point in playing a game if you can't play what you really WANT?

Although, I will add this: If I were you, I'd think about some other Standard legal deck to cart around for one reason alone: You're missing out on some great fun by limiting vamps to Standard format. Tongue Out
No worries. I was just stating my reasons for playing Vamps and making it Standard. However, you've, perhaps inadvertantly, changed my mind. More fun is well... more fun, so I'll go do some research on Standardy stuff, and make this one just a casual deck to have fun with. In the meantime, any suggestions for a non-standard vamps deck?

Should I re-add the Terminate, Captivating Vampire, and Vampire Lacerator?

Looking at the deck again, I'm kind of torn between the Stromkirk Noble and Vampire Lacerator...
To give you an idea I have 2 vampire decks, one is Red with black splash, the other mono black.

Casual Modern Red/Black Vampires (Focus on +1/+1 counters, removing blockers and having vampires grow bigger)
12x Mountain
4x Graven Cairns 
4x Dragonskull Summit
4x Blood Crypt
4x Blade of the Bloodchief
4x Stromkirk Noble
4x Falkenrath Exterminator
4x Terminate
4x Dreadbore
4x Rakish Heir
4x Stromkirk Captain
2x Ion Storm
4x Falkenrath Aristocrat
2x Olivia Voldaren

Casual Modern Mono Black Vampires (Aggro + Evasion) Still tweaking this one.
22x Swamp
4x Vampire Lacerator
4x Guul Draz Vampire
4x Guul Draz Assassin
4x Vampire Interloper
4x Feast of Blood
4x Go for the Throat
4x Captivating Vampire
4x Vampire Nighthawk
4x Bloodline Keeper        
2x Vampire Nocturnus

I've also considered the Dark Ritual option, and swapping out some of this list with; Kalastria Highborn, Gatekeeper of Malakir, Malakir Bloodwitch. Cavern of Souls is also a good fit in either deck for land.
Words are like arrows, once loosed they cannot be called back.
If you look through the first few pages of this forum, you'll find a half dozen b/R vampire threads. There'll be a lot of good info there.

Noble vs. Lacerator. I'll take Lacerator any day of the week. But I play Vampire Nocturnus, and as such, I keep all cards, except land of course, black. The only red in my deck at this point is Terminate, Dreadbore, and Stromkirk Captain, which all count as black cards to satisfy Nocturnus' condition. I also play it with Dark Rituals for many reasons, and it helps to keep the deck as black as possible for that reason as well.

My current 1-on-1 Vamp deck looks like this:



Now, I really don't think that the success I have with this deck has much to do with that mana base, I think it would do fine with a more economical mana base, just make sure that all lands make black mana, and that you have 12-14 lands that will also make red. Mutavaults are good for meeting the condition of Feast of Blood, and counting vamps for the Bloodwitch's ETB effect.

The Necropotence, on the other hand, DID very much speed this deck up obviously. My ability to play 2 copies is a product of my playgroups' house rules. Prior to adding the Necropotence, the spot belonged to Liliana Vess. Both Necro and Lili gave me the ability to make sure the top card on my library was always black. I did like Lili for one other reason. She was a target. My opponent wasted time and resources dealing with her. That is golden in this deck. 

Aside from the use of Dark Rit to drop early Nighthawks, kicked Gatekeepers, or a Nocturnus, a later drawn Dark Rit is great for leveling the Assassin or helping to drop a Bloodwitch. Most games are won off the ETB effect of the Bloodwitch.

The mana curve is rather high to be considered a strict aggro deck in construction, but it always comes out swinging like an aggro deck, and if it hasn't won in a few turns, can evolve into a more midrangey deck if need be. Another place the Dark Rits shine in this deck. I've dubbed it "dynamic aggro". I also love the simplicity of it. Make lots of vamps, make 'em bigger, and clear the path for them. Gets later in the game? Same thing, only bigger vamps. It works.

Other cards that are awesome, but didn't work out in my list (I tried em all):

Bloodghast. This guy is awesome and most consider it an auto-include. Recursion has a lot of synergy with a couple of other vamps that are highly playable.

Kalastria Highborn. This is a another cool vamp. Works great with Bloodghast and others.

Stromkirk Noble. You know this guy. I don't really like it as much out of Standard, but I'm in a very small minority. Even with that mana base, I couldn't reliably cast it on turn 1. In a true aggro deck running 12 or more 1 drops, yes, but in a Dark Rit deck, no.

Olivia Voldaren. Mid game control vampire. Pretty good against counter decks but, IMO, trumped in aggro decks by Malakir Bloodwitch's headshot. Good enough to build a deck around though. Just not aggro.

Falkenrath Aristocrat. Can easily replace Bloodwitch, most would agree with that. I tend to favor the guaranteed headshot from the Bloodwitch. Falkenrath is nice with Bloodghast, giving you a creature who's gonna come back from the sacrifice.

Rakish Heir I see this one a lot in lists too. But at 3 CMC, those spots are valuable. Esp. playing Dark Rit. I tried it in place of Stromkirk Captain, but giving up first strike on the Nighthawks was unacceptable, and it didn't do a great job of making bigger vamps. Typically, a vamp isn't gonna last more than 3 turns, and when you cast a new one, they have to start all over getting the counters. Not worth giving up first strike to me.

There's so many good cards for this deck, and so many very different, good ways to play it. It's kind of like goblins in that respect. I got wordy, but could go on...
To give you an idea I have 2 vampire decks, one is Red with black splash, the other mono black.

Casual Modern Red/Black Vampires (Focus on +1/+1 counters, removing blockers and having vampires grow bigger)
12x Mountain
4x Graven Cairns 
4x Dragonskull Summit
4x Blood Crypt
4x Blade of the Bloodchief
4x Stromkirk Noble
4x Falkenrath Exterminator
4x Terminate
4x Dreadbore
4x Rakish Heir
4x Stromkirk Captain
2x Ion Storm
4x Falkenrath Aristocrat
2x Olivia Voldaren

Casual Modern Mono Black Vampires (Aggro + Evasion)
22x Swamp
4x Vampire Lacerator
4x Guul Draz Vampire
4x Guul Draz Assassin
4x Vampire Interloper
4x Feast of Blood
4x Go for the Throat
4x Captivating Vampire
4x Vampire Nighthawk
4x Bloodline Keeper        
2x Vampire Nocturnus




Wow, I like both those lists. The first one is close to something I've been working on to use the Nobles, Aristocrats, and Olivias that I invested in and are just sitting here, and the second, well, looks a bit like my deck, just black and very traditional aggro, make lots of vamps, make em bigger, clear the path. Again, so elegantly simple.
Thanks for the suggestions and examples both of you.

I really liked Sacrifice's array of removal, so I think I'll use a variation of it if you don't mind. I also liked Graven Cairns from ZyreKEB's deck, so I'm replacing Rakdos Guildgate.



I removed the mono-red cards in here to add back Vampire Nocturnus, as I do like his buff quite a bit. Malakir Bloodwitch also looks fantastic, so cards were shuffled around to fit her in. I am, however, unsure whether Vampire Nocturnus's buff is worth revealing my next draw... Anyone care to confirm/deny? You both used it, so that sort of answers it, but I'm still uneasy. I'll have to test it out.

Lastly, as fantastic as some of them were, I'd like to avoid cards before 8th Edition, as they're much harder for me to obtain. (Shop doesn't usually have (m)any).

Thanks again for all the help.
Looks like you just need some card draw or digging and you ready to go. I'd give up 1 Bloodwitch, 1 Captivating Vampire, and maybe 1 Bloodline Keeper for 2 or 3 Liliana Vess. It'll give you some choice of how your cards come out, and as I mentioned before, she's great for stacking your top card black for the Nocturnus. Best thing to do is go play some games and see how it plays. Looks like it's definately gonna win a few though.

Also, there are a few other cheap duals that you'd probably be able to pick up cheap. Tainted Peak and Sulfurous Springs are both pretty cheap and would let you get rid of the Mountains so all your lands are capable of making black. I'd do 2 Peaks and 4 Springs. The life gain you have will more than make up for the few points you'll pay to the Springs. And of course, any Blood Crypts you can add along the way will help too.


Comme ca?
[deck]
+2 Liliana Vess
+2 Blood Crypt
+4 Sulfurous Springs

-1 Captivating Vampire
-1 Malakir Bloodwitch
-6 Mountain
[/deck]
I've always been really happy to draw a Bloodline Keeper, so I'm somewhat hesitant to reduce their numbers, but I'll play around with it.
Playing around with it is the best you can do at this point. You have a good idea of what you're doing, from here out it's just tweaking quantities. I had a hard time choosing between 3 or 4 Bloodlines too, not really cause I wanted to draw more, but because they end up target #1 and sometimes don't last long.

In your experiments, have a 3rd Liliana availible and try sliding it in there without worrying about dropping a card for it. I play this deck at 61 and 62 cards a lot and have never seen much of a difference, even before the Necros. If you're REALLY keen at staying at 60 cards, drop a land for the 3rd Lili. I've never had an issue playing at 23 lands either.

Looking back on the whole thing, I think the only thing I'm worried about for you is the lack of turn 1 shennannigans with no Dark Rit and only 4 1-drops. I think though that it's a good enough removal suite going on that you'll recover just fine. Honestly, I hope that all my help hasn't led you astray because of that lack of Dark Ritual.
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