Friends game. Minor local tourney play. Legacy/vintage format.
I used to play a lot but I had forgotten a lot. I played against a bunch of friends over the last three days and my deck has been...a disaster.
I'm looking to make it more competitive. The problem? I seem to only draw lands 6-8 rounds at a time. I long for the day of downloading ala STCCG.
Last game I played a friend who was trying a new deck and by turn 15 I still only had ONE mana.
I've done the math but the deck seems under powered. I kept all the cards lean and I'll be explaining why I selected each one. Hopefully you guys can help me make this thing more competitive while keeping its general identity.
Black Aggro/Life-Loss Vampire Deck: AKA LifeSucks.
Lands: 20(1/3...so far I've been short on mana 3 times and had NOTHING but mana 2 other occasions. I rarely seem to have the right amount.
: 10 - Too many cards target non-basic lands. It's always best to have plenty of swamps.Scrubland
4 - I use Vindicate and Sorin Innestrad, so I need a splash of white. This is cheap and tried and true.Orzhov Basilica
4 - I really don't like this land but everyone told me to use it. It's pretty but it seems counterproductive. Sure it gives me black and white but the playing tapped/ replacing an existing land makes it a slow process.Vault of the Archangel
2 - I kept two colorless mana producers because the W/B cost for Lifelink and Deathtouch is damned tasty for all creatures and it seemed that only 2 colorless couldn't hurt me. But two games ago all I drew WERE 2 VAs and by turn 9 I had ONLY them for mana. WTH?!?
Creatures: 18/30 (about 1/3...I thought it gives me a nice payload of vampires)Vampire Nighthawk
. x4 The deck revolves around non-"Life Drain" life drain and VN is broken. No explanation needed. Markov Patrician
x2 I'm starting to wonder if I can replace her with another vamp? I love the lifelink and fat attack but her 3 cmc is a hair steep.Child of Night
x2 Same as Patrician. Just smaller and more affordable. But also less useful, even after taking into account the adjusted cost.
I know that Patricians and Childs aren't as popular as say...Lacerators? Or Guuls. But Guuls aren't useful to my mind since by the time an opponent has 10 hps...I'm locked in control. Moreover, Lacerators are really expensive and are missing that very tasty Lifelink which is the point of the deck and gives me that fat lead. Sangromancer
x2 I should have some Malakir Bloodwitches since I face so many white decks but I love the Sangromancer. She's a 4 cmc "giant" that flies and has two additional powers! A flying 3/3 for 4 cmc is pretty average. The two additional powers make her decidedly above average. Yes...the hawt pic doesn't hurt.Captivating Vampire
x1 I had a Nocturnus but this guy is cheaper and still gives all my vamps a nice healthy bonus.Bloodline Keeper
x2 He's just amazing. A 5 cmc cost 3/3 flier that for an extra mana becomes a 5,5, pulls 2/2 flying vamp weenies out of his bum and buffs them to 4/4? Broken as hell. I'd include more but he's sooo expensive. Drana Kalastria Bloodchief
x1 5 cmc flying 4/4 angel with self pump and that "infects" any target and can kill anyone with enough -1 counters? Tasty. Plus, she's gorgeous. Nirkana Revenant
x1 I'm really considering giving her the boot. Never gotten her to play in almost 10 games. 4/4 for 6 cmc is lousy, even with a self pump. Although the additional power of boosting mana production by one extra B per land is so tempting that maybe I've let her cloud my judgement. Liliana of the Veil
x1 Cheap cost. A bit brittle but the sacrifice creature has saved me on multiple occasions. I didn't want to reach for a beefier more expensive Lili here. Besides, her +1 ability of discarding cards is a nuisance but I'm dying to get her -6 split to work one day. Devastating. Sorin Lord
of Inn x1 Cheapish cost. Pumping out vamp weenies and buffing them is similar to Bloodline Keeper. Plus he has the extra bonus of being infinitely ultracool and being able to capture and subvert up to three targets, including creatures and even planeswalkers. Chosen of Markov
x1 No idea why I chose her. Not because she's hot. There are other hot vamps too. She's cheap though, matches the theme and when she pumps for cmc of 3 and a tapped vamp, she is a 4/4 monster. Great value...it's just...she's a tough one to get out. I think she'll get cut.
I'm pretty sure the nighthawks and bloodlines will survive. Lili is a great choice, Drana and Sorin are good enough to stick around. I think I should ditch Chosen, Nirkana, and maybe Captivating. I know some of you will ask to swap the lifelinkers but with Sanguine Bond x 3 in the deck, that kind of breaks the point. But any tips would be super huge. :/ The problem is that lacerators give me NO hp bonus and don't blend with Sang Bond. Even if they are cheaper and they don't hit any harder. Plus they're doing damage to me, which against my opposing decks can be a problem. I suppose I could swap the Sangromancers for Malakir Bloodws...but the Malakirs are more expensive and in a deck where I'm already slower than creeping death and very unvampire...I don't know if that is the best move.
Spells: 22.Dark Ritual.
x4 I need mana. I'm still very, very slow. Even with Dark Ritual. Vintag only allow one Black Lotus and Legacy none though so I was looking into Cabal Ritual and Cull the Weak but they're really lousy for performance. Blood Tribute and Sanguine Bond
x3 each. This is the bread and butter. One shot kills and I keep them in threes to have failsafes. I'm thinking however that I might just keep two and use the two extra slots for card retrieval instead for flexibility? The other problem is leyline and all the jazz. But with a SBin place, one BT will kill outright and ignore if an opponent has 5 life...or 5000.Vindicate
x4. I've been running into Leylines. Circles. Pacifisms. Just general shennanigans. I see tons of monoblack decks that have NO defensive spells. Everyone I know uses them. I have no idea how they do damage. Maybe they're just for casual environments? Vindicate is the great equalizer. It obliterates anything in my way. Unmake
x2. With blighsteel colossi and boomerang riding badguys that seem to use the graveyard as a revolving door...the exile capability of unmake seemed great. Enslave
x2. I know I have a ton of expensive defensive spells but enslave is a great way to capture an ultra-tough baddie and use her. WIth so many mono-black hosing strategies(mono black seems weak now to me), capturing say...an angel or dragon of an opposing color gives me options.
x2 This gets me back my monster in case it dies. NO explanation necessary. It lets me steal theirs too.Relic of Progenitus
x2 I got tired of decks that focused on getting me to a smaller hand count than they do. It seems like everyone in my circle does that. Relic of progenitus keeps people from playing cards and bringing them back and casting them 10 times like say...doubling health spells. Or retrieving millstones...with painters in play. Etc. Etc. Cheap.
What am I doing wrong?
You guys are at this all day. After 20 hours of careful pruning the deck is 3 wins 8 losses. It's a mess. Granted a few losses were due to 7 straight land draws. Or no lands at all until turn 15...etc. But still...Help me senseis.
Is there a way to make a mono black vamp deck be competitive in legacy? Vintage? Technically I have some white in there. Do I need more? What could be improved? How can my defenses and efficiency and speed be improved? Is there a way to make a sexy, fun vamp deck work in high stakes games? Or is vamp deck a flavor for the casual nub that doesn't mind losing a lot?