It’s Tuesday O’Clock! Time for a deck tech!
There are several cards in Magic’s history that have consistently made me ask “how is this not broken?” I then go and check the price on these cards and discover that none of them even break a dollar! I ask myself why these cards are as cheap as they are when they have the potential to be so powerful? Cards such as Phylactery Lich and Desecration Demon are potent creatures that just simply haven’t found a home yet. These “bulk” rares deserve a home, and are ripe for abuse. And nothing can beat the satisfaction of defeating your opponent with a deck that you got for less than $20.
Let’s first go over the star cards of the deck, Phylactery Lich, and Desecration Demon. It is clear to see upon reading that these cards are just busted. A 5/5 indestructible for 3 mana, and a 6/6 flyer for 4 seems way undercosted. Of course, these cards do come with downsides, but the downsides aren’t as bad as you would think. Simply building your deck to combat these downsides is all you need to succeed with these bulk rares.
In order to guarantee a turn 3 Lich, we have to run a high density of artifacts to support him. We are running 17 artifacts in the deck that should all come out before him. Darksteel Axe is one of the best targets for the Lich as it essentially makes the Lich invulnerable to anything short of exile. If you are unable to get Darksteel Axe online in time, it is perfectly acceptable to use other artifacts for the Phylactery. If possible try to avoid Executioner’s Capsule as that does sacrifice itself as part of the cost of destroying a creature. But it will do well in a pinch.
Another really powerful card in the deck and the only one who breaks the bulk range is Gatekeeper of Malakir. Gatekeeper of Malakir is one of the best two drops that we have available to play but is, unfortunately, a $1.50 a card. However, I still think that this is the best card for us to play in this slot, as it is a really effective magic card. Making your opponent sacrifice their creature the turn before you play Desecration Demon gives your opponent some really tough choices that they then have to deal with.
One of the greatest things about running a mono-black deck is that you get access to one of the most powerful devotion cards in the history of magic in Gray Merchant of Asphodel. Assuming the ideal curve of Executioner’s Capsule, Scepter Fugue, Phylactery Lich, and Desecration Demon, you can be draining for 10 life on turn 5! The best part about our beloved Gary is his price. 25 cents is a pittance to pay for a card that is this good.
Rounding out at $20 in paper, and only a single $1 on MTGO, this deck is a steal! Black has a had a lot of good creatures printed that rarely see play, despite the potential for them to be busted. If you’d like to try out a fun and inexpensive deck at your next FNM be sure to give Mono-Black Bulk a try. And as always, have a great week and an amazing Tuesday!