Nightmare survival

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survival of the fittest
Reccuring nightmare
I have been noodling with the idea of putting Recurring Nightmare and Survival of the Fittest together. You definitely have a combo there. Survival of the fittest is amazing! It's a tutor and a discarder at the same time. You discard some cards, get the creatures you want, put them in the graveyard and reanimate them. Keep rolling around with "Enter the Battlefield" effects. Here's my first try so far:



I have brought the 4 Recurring Nightmare and the 4 Survival of the Fittest and I have been using creatures and lands I already had. Sometimes, it have worked wonderfully well, sometimes it failed. Sometimes mana issue. Sometimes I didn't have a plan. Sometimes, I just didn't draw a Survival of the fittest. The engine wasn't working well. Or the other guy was too fast. This is a sign that it need revision. Here's a couple of idea for it.

- Vengevine is a card that I didn't buy because it was too pricy. You can basically discard him and fetch/discard/play 2 Basking RootWalla. Vengevine was however too Pricy for me.
- For recycling card I have Genesis, Squee, Goblin Nabob, Sun Titan, Eternal Witness. Especially Squee, he gives me card advantage along with the Survival. Tortured Existence is good too with Squee, I can re-use creatures over and over.
- Control: Fleshbag Marauder, Woodfall Primus Triskelion, Sheoldred, Whispering One, Acidic Slime, Terastodon, Terastodon. They all help me with getting rid of something in play.
- Combo: The Great Whale. If I have 6+ lands and a Recurring Nightmare, I can loop infinitely.

Any ideas how to fix this deck?
Vintage only cards... my own personal peeve on this one, but if someone rocked up to my playgroup with Vampiric Tutor, Survival of the Fittest and Demonic Tutor, I'd let them know I wasn't too impressed. They're insanely powerful cards which is why they're vintage only, and IMO too powerful for casual (I know if I allowed myself to run them in decks those decks would immediately get more powerful). If you want to tone it down a bit so it's more casual friendly, there's Fauna Shaman (which also doubles as a sacrifice creature) and Grim Tutor/Diabolic Tutor/Beseech the Queen, and also Dimir Machinations and Shred Memory (depending on which card/s you're primarily wanting to search for).

Beyond that, is your color choice here. You don't need to splash blue for Great Whale (or the superior version in Palinchron), and you don't need to splash white for Sun Titan. You can get all the effects you need in black and green, and that helps your mana base stay a lot simpler. Yes, the allure of an infinite mana combo is nice - include it if you want, and definitely go the blue route before the white route for it - but you definitely, definitely don't need it. Personally I know how powerful this combo is, so I'd just stay BG and be satisfied with the ridiculous amount of card advantage it generates.

Focus on the card advantage with this one. Creatures with solid ETBs and/or LTBs are going to be your bread and butter. Cards like Vengevine and Bloodghast - not necessary. If you wanted to go the aggressive self-recurring option, you wouldn't need to run Recurring Nightmare.

I made a deck like this ages ago, and the creatures I went with were:


If I were to make a decklist now, some of those would stay the same (Acidic Slime is boss if you can keep getting its ETB - you can easily destroy their lands and shut them out; Eternal Witness allows you to fetch whatever you need - in particular, Fauna Shaman or Recurring Nightmare if they get destroyed; Solemn Simulacrum goes +1 on the way in and out), but I might consider some other additions. The deck is reanimator at its core, so it doesn't hurt to get some big bad nasties. Griselbrand and Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger would both do well, though are probably not too budget given their EDH applications. Rune-Scarred Demons ETB is probably one of the best you could ask for. And so on.

But yes, to summarise:
0. Consider replacing vintage cards with non-vintage cards.
1. GB are your main two colors. U is an option for the extra infinite combo, but far from necessary. W is unnecessary. Staying GB will make the deck slightly more casual friendly.
2. Focus on ETBs. You don't need aggro creatures at all, unless they have a great ability of some sort to warrant their inclusion. 
I'm all about super-control in MTG. If you're able to stop my shenanigans, then there aren't enough shenanigans. Lv 1 Judge Current Decklists Sweeping Beauty (Casual) A Vision of Clones (Casual) Coming soon... more decks! :-O
Ah sorry, I posted this post in the Legacy forum and they told me that Survival of the Fittest was banned in Legacy. So I figured out that here was the best place to post it since I was playing online and didn't have the power 9. They also told me there was not too many people in the Vintage forum. So... Here I am.

Here is my updated deck with your suggestions:



All I can say is *WOW*! This thing rocks! It is very resistant against any kind of removal or board sweeper. It has a good draw engine, a feature of almost all good decks I have seen. A question I ask about decks based on specific cards is: "Can the deck win without them". My other deck didn't, this deck handle itself fine without the Survival of the Fittest or the Recurring Nightmare. It handled itself fine even against 2 Return to Dust and Bojuka Bog. It can destroy a lot of things but usually what makes the opponent conceide is the combination of Woodfall Primus, Acidic Slime and a Recurring Nightmare. This is a recursive mega land buster! I usually destroy opponent's land in 2-3 turn in late game. It can handle creatures fine. I won against elves, blue control, burn, etc. The only thing missing is probably a way to gain life. Probably too slow for tourneys, but otherwise, this thing is one hell of a deck!

Thanks! Cool
I have been noodling with the idea of putting Recurring Nightmare and Survival of the Fittest together. You definitely have a combo there.



Such a fantastic combo that Brian Selden used it in the World Championships back in 1998 Wink.



Hello there Kodanshi,

Yes, I like very much to inspire myself from the Magic History, I take combos from old decks and make the better. Anyhow, here is Brian's deck:










Cali Nightmare aka RecSur  
Creatures
4 Birds of Paradise
1 Cloudchaser Eagle
1 Man-o'-War
2 Nekrataal
1 Orcish Settler
2 Spike Feeder
1 Spike Weaver
1 Spirit of the Night
1 Thrull Surgeon
1 Tradewind Rider
2 Uktabi Orangutan
1 Verdant Force
4 Wall of Blossoms
2 Wall of Roots
Control Features
2 Firestorm
2 Lobotomy
2 Scroll Rack

Mana
3 City of Brass
8 Forest
1 Gemstone Mine
2 Karplusan Forest
2 Reflecting Pool
1 Swamp
2 Underground River
2 Undiscovered Paradise
1 Volrath's Strongh


Mine work wonderful too. It could be slightly better if I had the budget. Here's a few cards I suggest for this deck: Thragtusk, Sylvan Primordial, Massacre Wurm, Duplicant, Primordial Titan. Any critter that does something when it EtB or LtB is good. If it does both, it's even better.

Thanks. Smile
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