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John Shultis on Magic
urza_90@yahoo.com
Precon
Recon
Deathly Dominion
11.23.11

       Welcome to another Precon Recon here at Pojo.com! What with Thanksgiving this week, I thought it appropriate to look at a deck based on sending things to the graveyard, kind of like what we are all doing with the Turkey we will be savoring. So I will look at the Deathly Dominion deck from Innistrad, and take advantage of the Morbid ability. The original deck list can be found here: http://www.wizards.com/Magic/TCG/productarticle.aspx?x=mtg/tcg/innistrad/intropacks#deck3

Deathly Dominion
Innistrad Intro Pack

     Let me start off by saying that I absolutely love the ideals of this deck, I just wish that it was assembled better. The fact that this deckSkirsdag High Priest depends on things dying just means it should be mainly your opponents, unless yours dying benefits you more. I built a deck very similar to this one from the ground up, but used red and black, and it has been amazingly successful. I think that this deck performs much better with red, and has better capabilities in utilizing red, but will focus on what we have here, but will make some more suggestions at the end if you wish to splash red into the deck, essentially making it a Jund deck from Innistrad.

     So the deck’s main focus is on killing things off for various reasons, and then gaining the benefit from Morbid. The problem the deck runs into, is it has a lot of Morbid ability, but lacks reasons to have it go off. The few things that could trigger it also cost mana, which means the spells with Morbid then cost even more to play for benefit. The deck’s description says don’t hesitate even if the bonus won’t be there, and it makes sense due to the fact that if you wait too long, you’ll be dead! So we will look at the ways of fixing that, reducing some costs, and over all trying to speed things up a bit, so that you actually will gain all the Morbid benefits you can.

       So let us begin by looking at what is no longer required for us to run the deck successfully. Make a Wish is one of the first cards that I looked at and said “No way!” Four mana for two random cards is just not worth it to me. There is a much betMorkrut Bansheeter option that I will look at later, but honestly, the way the deck is going to be rebuilt, anything we send to the graveyard we may never need back, and if we do, we shouldn’t leave getting it back up to chance. I would have to say that the same is true for the Caravan Vigil’s. Though they do have a rather nice Morbid trigger, I’d rather just use Rampant Groth or even Traveler’s Amulet. For me, Naturalize is a sideboard card, but I suppose some people may like having it, just in case. Leave it in if you want, I’d rather side board it. Another risk/reward based card is the Prey upon. While it could be a good thing, I’d rather use it’s space for something that will kill something for sure, rather then hope. And it reduces the risk of losing one of your own creatures as well. Brain Weevil, while having a sacrifice ability, just doesn’t match well for it’s mana cost. Four mana for something that will just end up dead, doesn’t work for me. Woodland Sleauth is another card very similar to the Make a Wish. It shouldn’t be a random decision as to what is returned from your graveyard. You should know what you want back, and get it back. The Warpath Ghouls were nothing more than filler cards in this deck. They serve no great purpose, and certainly should remain in it. Hollowhenge Scavenger is nice for the life gain, but we will replace it with something much better for life gain, which will also cause life loss. That is eleven cards we have removed. While not a ridiculous amount, it is enough that the face of the deck will greatly change.

      Obviously, there are rare cards that if you can get your hands on, you should. The main ones are another Skirsdag High Priest and Reaper from the Abyss. Skirsdag high Priest is a key component in this deck, and having another copy only increases the chances of pulling one. He is going to be a work horse for the deck once out, dropping 5/5 flying Demons every time you kill something. And the Reaper from the Abyss is going to be helping kill things off at alarming rates should you find ways off killing things every turn, even during your opponents turn.

      But let us focus on some easier to come by options. Let me begin simply with Falkenrath Noble. Every time something dies, you gain 1 life and target opponent loses 1 life. With how often thing will be dying, you can gain much moreFalkenrath Noble life than you would have using the Hollowhenge Scavenger, while also causing your opponent to lose life. The trade off there is self explanatory. Two copies, at least. Remember, they’re effects would be cumulative should you have multiple copies out. Another card that should be in here is fuel for your Morbid, and that is Jade Mage. The Jade Mage’s ability to drop tokens is key when you need to sacrifice things regularly. Of course, if you could get your hands on a Lord of Lineage, it doesn’t cost mana to get tokens, but for a common option, the Jade Mage is ok. Two copies at least so that you increase chances of pulling one. It wouldn’t hurt to add in another Doom Blade, Go For the Throat, or even Victim of Night. The spot removal could be key, and sets up Morbid at the cost of an opponents creature. I also recommend another Altar’s Reap. The sacrifice, draw two cards sets up Morbid, and allows you to pull something useful. I also think that the Typhoid Rat is overlooked in this deck, and two more should go in. The reason is it is a set up card. You attack, your oppoent will have a choice, block and lose a creature, or take a damage. If they continue taking the damage, it is eventually going to get the better of them. And if they block, it is an easy set up for Morbid. Three more copies. That is nine cards in so far. I think that in keeping with how  the deck should be able to better reuse cards, the final spots should go to two more Reassembling Skeleton’s. They are a very nice card, that can be worked over regularly from the graveyard. They are certainly key in the red/black deck that I built.

       But, if you decide to go red, the Reassembling Reassembling SkeletonSkeleton’s become even better. For three mana, you could be sacrificing it to Skirsdag Cultist, and then dropping it back onto the battlefield. Which would set up using your Skirsdag high Priest, while flinging damage. And then in those cases, should you have out even one Falkenrath Noble, you are gaining life while making your opponent lose even more life. And what is better is if you go red, you can use Jund Battlemage in place of Jade Mage, which can produce tokens, or even cause your opponent to lose life. Plus, using red, you could use cards such as Traitorous Blood to gain control of an opponents creature, attack with it if able, and then sacrifice it off to one of your own abilities. Not to mention red also has the Brimstone Volley, which will either do 3 damage, or 5 damage if something has died, to either a creature or player. I think red certainly has more advantages to utilizing Morbid effectively. However, there is no harm in combining red and green in harmony with black.

      And there you have it! As I said, the deck works quite well with red, but can still function well with green. The decision is ultimately up to you, the builder.

        I would like to extend to all of you readers from all of us here at Pojo.com a very Happy Thanksgiving! We hope it is filled with fun, family, football, and of course, gaming! ]

       So until next time, keep safe, and keep gaming!

 

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