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Magic: The Gathering!!!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Oh Captain, My Captain!!!

Tap This, Kill That!

Welcome one and all! This is Captain Red Zone coming to you with yet another deck for your viewing delight. This week I’m bringing to you Commander a deck that I came to my mind a while ago.  If you read my other article here at 3TF, you may have notice that I have done a few mono colored decks. I’ve done Black, Blue, and White so far. So I figured that this week I’ll bring to you another mono colored deck followed by one more next week. Then when I’m done with these I’ll start on a few dual colored deck and work my way up from there… maybe. So this week here at 3TF we’re going Red! I like red and so I’m going to do my favorite Red Commander Deck with Ashling the Pilgrim! So let’s start!

Burn Baby Burn!

Ashling the Pilgrim: We’ll start off with the Ashling. She is a card that gives you a lot of options and flexibility. With the ability to get bigger, board wipe, and kill players all in one little card for one colourless and a red, she is a total package.

 May Her Flames Rise Up To Meet You!

From here you can put in about 99 Mountains or your favorite mono red lands and you, my friend, are off to the races.

I hope you enjoyed this article and I’ll see you next wee-hold on a sec…
What’s that…?

Yeah I did it…

So what if it’s a little short…

Don’t Judge Me!



It seems that The Powers That Be have informed me that I have to do another deck. They said if I put this article out there like this my readers will hunt me down a do all kinds of bad things to my pets while I watch. I don’t really care about the dog but I don’t want to know what would happen to my lizard sooo…

On To The Next One!!!

With Ashling out of the way, I moved on to pingers. For those of you that don’t know, a pinger is a creature, usually with a small body like a 0/1 or a 1/1, that has an ability that pretty much reads “some kind of cost and/or tap”: This creature deals 1 damage to target creature or player ”. In Magic this ability was once a Blue mage’s thing.

But it was later turn into a red thing when it was decided that blue had too much stuff and red was where the direct damage felt like it should be. Lighting bolt is red but the guy that does almost the same thing but on a smaller every turn scale is… blue? Now it’s pretty much a red thing, with a few exceptions here and there. It’s so red now that it even shows up on a few Legendary guys.

So with that, let’s see if it has come far enough to make it as a 100 card singleton deck!

You Can Turn That Sideways!

Let’s start with our Legendary guys. I couldn’t pick one to be the Commander. So, I’ll list them here. I’ll pick the one I think it should be at the end, but all of these will go in the deck so feel free to swap them out to see who you like best.

Ben-Ben, Akki Hermit, Heartless Hidetsugu, Jeska, Warrior Adept, Jiwari, the Earth Aflame, and Kamahl, Pit Fighter: These guys all have the tap for damage ability going for them. Some tap and deal more damage than one, like Ben-Ben who does damage equal to the number of Mountains you control. Heartless Hidetsugu does half of everyone’s total life, but keep in mind that includes you too. Jeska has first strike and haste so she could attack from time to time while pinging for one if she can’t get in there. Jiwari has a nice anti-art strike ability. Kamahl goes for three points on a tap and 6 with a swing, making him the biggest one of this group in battle but his one toughness kind of makes him a very weak general for this deck. But still, a Lighting Bolt on a stick is good.

Ashling the Pilgrim and Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker:  These two are our backup Legends. Ashling could easily run a deck solo, like I showed earlier, but she has no problems helping us out here. Plus she has a ping like effect where she can hit everything on the board for the amount of +1/+1 counters she has, getting around Shroud and Hexproof dudes. Kiki-Jiki can give us extra tokens of our other guys. This may not be as useful here as it maybe in other places but we’ll keep him around just in case.
From here we go into the meat of the deck: the pingers that will make up the rest of our team.

Brimstone Mage, Chainflinger, Crimson Hellkite, Crimson Manticore, Cunning Sparkmage, Embermage Goblin, Fallen Ferromancer, Frostwielder, Goblin Sharpshooter, Grim Lavamancer,
Lightning Crafter, Prodigal Pyromancer, Tar Pitcher, Vithian Stinger, Whipkeeper, and Wojek Embermage:  All of these guys have “Mana,  (and /or) Tap: deal (some amount of) damage to (creature and/or player)”.  I’m not going to point out each one and how much they do, but I will pick the ones that do something else as well. Fallen Ferromancer has Infect so he can pick away at a larger guy until one of the other guys can burn him off or he can slowly poison a player turning their 40 points to 10. Frostweilder exiles a creature that she dealt damage to when it dies. Keep in mind she does not have to kill the guy, just dealt it a damage the turn it dies. Goblin Sharpshooter untaps when a guy dies. Wojek Embermage can kill of a swarm of tokens.

Not bad of a list for an ability that didn’t start out in red. There were even more but I left them out because A) there were too many dudes and I still needed to add out things or B) Their ability caused you to do something else like discard and I want to try and keep what’s in my hand for this deck.

So now we’re on to the other guys I added to help out this group of fire starters...

Dragonmaster Outcast, Inferno Titan, Mine Layer, Moggcatcher, Stuffy Doll, Stigma Lasher, and War Elemental: Dragonmaster gives us a few dragons to use for late game attack. Inferno Titan is a 6/6 pinger when he shows up and attacks. Mine Layer gives us a land destruction outlet. Moggcatcher helps us search out goblins, and a few of our pingers are goblins, so that works. Stuffy Doll can help get around players that shroud themselves. Stigima Lasher can keep people from gaining life so they stay inside burn range while War Elemental gives you a nice beater.

Shine It Up Reeaally Nice!

So I can hear you now says things like “But Captain, 1 damage is not going to win a game! What are you going to do, kill everyone 1 point at a time?”, “What are you going to do when a guy with more than three defense shows up?”, and “Who farted?”… 1) We’ll get around to killing the other players soon enough, 2) I have a plan for those big guys, and 3) He who smelt it, dealt it.

Basilisk Collar, Gorgon Flail, and Quietus Spike: These cards will help our pingers deal with bigger guys by way of deathtouch. The Collar can gain us a life for each ping. The Flail pumps up our guys a bit and the Quietus Spike works as a way to cut life totals in half making it easier to deal the last few with our dudes.

Blade of the BloodChief, Grafted Exoskeleton, Kusari-Gama, Neko-Te, and Scythe of the Wretched: These will bring up the rear. Blade will pump our guys for every death on the field even if it’s not us doing the killing. I say if you get it early, let it get passed around to your dudes instead of keeping it on one guy. That will make sure no one goes “that dude is getting really big… kill it with Doom Blade”. Grafted Exoskeleton gives Infect so we can poison out a player or to with a pinger. Kusari-Gama can deal out a lot of damage; just remember if someone attacks someone else you can ping all of the defending player’s blockers. Neko-Te will tap down a lot of guys until someone realizes that you’re using it with a pinger, hitting their biggest dudes, and decide to Grip it. The Scythe will give us the chance to steal creatures we kill.

Infiltration Lens, Pariah’s Shield, Thornbite Staff, and Whispersilk Cloak:  The lens gives us cards, which is something we’re lacking. The Shield goes with Stuffy Doll. The Cloak is for evasion. The staff is something interesting. It turns our non pingers into pingers but it works with our other pingers as well. Give a pinger that only needs to tap a equipment with deathtouch and the staff… think… that’s right, you just killed every guy on the field you don’t like. Deal 1, kill it, untap, and repeat.
Now this maybe living the dream, so let’s move on to…

Battle Strain, Circle of Flame, Furnace of Rath, Impatience, and Repercussion: Battle Strain helps take out bigger guys by bringing them into burn range; remember, we don’t have to be in the battle for it to work. Circle of Flame is our red Ghostly Prison… I really need to get some help. Furnace of Rath helps us by doubling our burn. Impatience makes sure that people keep playing stuff to move the game along and punishes people who don’t. Repercussion let’s our pingers do double work picking away life while picking away dudes.

Blood Moon, Fervor, and Uphill Battle: Non-basic land hate, giving our guys haste, and tapping down their guys sounds good to me. Sign me up.

And Stick It Straight Up Your Candy @$$!

We’re almost done. Just a few more spells to give us something to do while we ping!

Beacon of Destruction, Grab the Reins, Into the Core, Smash, and Smash to Smithereens: Fireball should be here but I have a feeling that if the game goes long enough for it to work, we should be dead so Beacon can fill in for now. Reins are just a good spell for dealing with guys. Into the Core, Smash, and Smash to Smithereens are for some artifact hate.

Acidic Soil, Aftershock, Bend or Break, Melt Terrain, Molten Rain, Shatterstorm, Wheel of Fate, and Wildfire: Acidic Soil deals out some extra damage. Aftershock as our catch all for what red can handle. Bend or Break is a good land destruction card. Molten Rain and Melt Terrain are for pinpoint land hate. Shatterstorm is for whenever a player gets too out of hand with an artifact combo. Wheel of Fate give us some needed draw, and I put in Wildfire because it’s one of my pet cards.

Chandra, the Firebrand and Koth of the Hammer: These two are here because Koth can make mana
for our effects and dude while turning our Mountains into pingers. Chandra is a pinger herself and can deal out a lot of damage by copying our spells or going -six for six damage to up to six people and/or creatures we don’t like.

If You Smeeeeellllllll What The Captain Is Cooking!

34 Mountains later, we have a deck. I think our General for this deck should be Heartless Hidetsugu. He can cut our opponents life in half making it easy for our small guys to finish off the last few points. There you go. Don’t touch my lizard and I’ll call this one done and over with. You should feel lucky you got out of this with only a few burns and a smoked hat. Now go get some water and come back next week when I’m going Green!

Hope you had fun and please leave any comments or suggestions.  Until next time,

This is your Captain speaking… We’re heading into the Red Zone!

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