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Magic: The Gathering!!!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Oh Captain, My Captain!!!

Time to Experiment!

Welcome one and all!  This is Captain Red Zone coming to you with the next Dual Color deck in my series for your viewing delight.  This week we go into Green and Blue.  One problem here is these two colors have the lowest amount of legends in the dual colors.  With only three to pick from, we are kind of in a tight space.  We have to pick from Momir Vig, Simic Visionary, Edric, Spymaster Of Trest, and Experiment Kraj.

Picking one of these is a simple process of elimination.  We’re not using Momir Vig due to how broken he can get.  If every time I cast a spell I get to tutor, I would need to buy a ton of sleeves.  I haven’t touched on any of the new Commanders from this year yet, and if I’m going to do that I would like to do that as a different series of articles.  So while Edric is cool and I will be doing something with him in the future it’s just not his time.  Which means the only one left is…

This is fine with me, because I just so happen to have a Kraj deck in my box.  So I’m going to use this time to show case a deck I have a lot of hands on experience with.  While this deck maybe a little less theme based, it’s still a personal favorite.
For those of you who don’t know, Kraj loves activated abilities. These are abilities that have a cost, a “:”, and then a line of text telling you what you get.  Cards like Llanowar Elves, Blinding Mage, Shivan Dragon, Merfolk Looter, and Royal Assassin all have activated abilities.  Just figured I should point that out for any newer players out there.  Kraj is an interesting creature because he is able to do all the activated abilities of any creature in play as long as 1) the creature has a +1/+1 counter and 2) you’re able to pay the cost.

In Commander, this can be a little tricky because you can only use Blue and Green mana to pay for abilities while Kraj is the Commander.  So if someone has a Shivan Dragon in play with a +1/+1 counter and you have Kraj out, yes Kraj does have the firebreathing ability, but it can’t use it due to your inability to make red mana.  But we won’t let that stop us! Let’s get this deck up and running.

Into the Lab!

First thing we need is to figure out is how to use Kraj as much as possible. With a high mana cost as his... hers… ‘its’, we need to make sure we get as much out of it as possible.  Kraj does it’s best work when it can untap as multiple times in a single turn.  So let’s start there.

Soliton, Horseshoe Crab, Sword of the Paruns, Umbral Mantle, Thousand-Year Elixir, Simic Ragworm, and Devoted Druid: Here is as good a package as any.  All of these will allow Kraj to untap.  Soliton, Horseshoe Crab, and Simic Ragworm all untap for a single Blue mana.  Devoted Druid untap at the cost of adding a -1/-1 counter to its body.  Now these are all abilities Kraj can steal as long as we can get a +1/+1 counter on one of these guys.  Umbral Mantle, Sword of the Paruns, and Thousand-Year Elixir can untap Kraj without the need for a creature as long as we have the mana for it.  Sure the elixir is more of a one shot deal but sometimes once is all you need.

Nomadic Elf, Bloom Tender, and Mana Reflection: Now we start to see how we’re going to “go infinite”.  With Bloom Tender out, and with a counter on it, Kraj can make two mana; one Green and one Blue.  With one of the untap guys, you can make as much Green mana as you want.  Nomadic Elf allows you to turn all that Green mana into Blue mana so you can play any card in your hand.  Mana Reflection is here for more mana, just in case.  It may not let you go infinite but it can work just fine in the right places.

Sage of Fables, Sphinx of Magosi, and Enclave Cryptologist: Ok so with Kraj tapping and untapping into the evening night, these are the cards we need to seal the deal.  These guys will let you draw as many cards as you want.  With these three packages you can draw your deck and have the mana needed to cast any card you pull.

So there is the basic stuff you will need to get to victory.  Counting Kraj, this is a four card combo, and if your table allows you to get this off they deserve what they get.  From here we’ll add a few extra cards to help get the combo started.

Garruk Wildspeaker, Elvish Aberration, Primeval Titan, Joraga Treespeaker, Extraplanar Lens, Simic Signet, Everflowing Chalice, and Sol Ring: Here we have mana production and acceleration.  These are here to fill in for when Bloom Tender dies or gets exiled.  You won’t go infinite with these but they do provide a lot of mana over the course of the game.

Jace Beleren, Opportunity, See Beyond, Sensei's Divining Top, Harmonize, and Overbeing of Myth: Here we have extra ways to draw cards. These will help to get a full grip quick. Like the other list these are here to fill in for when you don’t have a way to go all out.

Garruk's Horde, Tezzeret the Seeker, Future Sight, and Momir Vig, Simic Visionary: Deck control is a must in this game.  Use these to get to what you need.  Momir Vig with Future Sight or Garruk’s Horde and infinite mana can let you play every green and/or blue creature you want.  Just cast a green guy from the top and then search for the next one. Tezzeret will find your artifacts you need and can untap things like the Elixir.

Thornling, Cytoplast Manipulator, Ant Queen, Plaxcaster Frogling, Fauna Shaman, Chameleon Colossus, Simic Guildmage, and Jade Mage: Here we have a few cool creatures with abilities Kraj would love to have. Ant Queen and Jade Mage can make a army of 1/1’s. Also with the whole four piece combo thing you could say make a million tokens and pump them until their all 1,000,000/1,000,000’s by using Kraj to put +1/+1 counters on them. Thornling is here to give Kraj haste and indestructibility. Cytoplast Manipulator can steal every creature on the table with Kraj. The Shaman is here for creature searching while Frogling can protect all the creature with counter that Kraj is using. The Colossus is here because… it’s the Colossus!!!

Plaguemaw Beast, Contagion Clasp, and Viral Drake: Here we have a proliferate set of cards that we get to use to pump our ‘Walkers and our other creatures with +1/+1 counters. Also if someone happens to get poisoned, we can kill them without really trying. We can also make a few friends by pumping up their guys with counters or their 'Walkers if the game starts to go wrong.

Trygon Predator, Root Greevil, Wickerbough Elder, Krosan Grip, Nevinyrral's Disk, Crystal Shard, Into the Roil, and Erratic Portal: Every deck needs removal. This package gives you a variety of ways to deal with creatures, enchantments, and artifacts. Also Wickerbough Elder can be used with Devoted Druid and Kraj to blow up every artifact and enchantment on the field.

Doubling Season, Spitting Image, Rite of Replication, and Followed Footsteps:This set can be used to double the amount of creatures you need. It even works pretty well with just copying creatures your opponents have. Spitting Image is one of my favorite cards due to the fact that it can take out Legends from the grave! Rite of Replication and Followed Footsteps are great cards with any non-legendary creature. Use them on a Primeval Titan or a Master of the Wild hunt and get back to me.

Master of the Wild Hunt, Frost Titan, Vigor, Time Stretch, Lightning Greaves, Whispersilk Cloak, Take Possession, Relic of Progenitus, Clockspinning, and Recollect: Here are our niche cards. Use the Cloak and the Greaves on Kraj to keep it safe. Master of the Wild Hunt is great for dealing with creatures given time. Take Possession is good for stealing other problem cards your opponents have. Vigor can put +1/+1 counters on creatures for you before you cast Kraj. Relic is for grave hating and Recollect can get back a card for us which is usually Bloom Tender. Frost Titan is also a great target for your Rite of Replication/Followed Footsteps. Clockspinning is great for removing unwanted counters form your guys or adding a few to your opponents suspended cards.

Reito Lantern: This is my secret tech. With all the draw/search effects this deck has nothing is out of our range for too long unless it’s exiled. If you get the draw/mana combo going this with Time Stretch equals infinite turns. Use it wisely.

What Have We Done!?

With 17 Forest and 17 Island we can put this Experiment behind us. Like I’m going to let a piece of paper stop me. As always, my mana base here is just a starting point. At the bottom, you can check out the deck list. Next week we get into another dual deck this time with Red and White. As always thanks for the read and I will see you next week for another article!

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!!!

1 Experiment Kraj
1 Simic Signet
1 Recollect
1 Harmonize
1 Take Possession
1 Rite of Replication
1 Into the Roil
1 Tezzeret the Seeker
1 Relic of Progenitus
1 See Beyond
1 Mana Reflection
1 Clockspinning
1 Everflowing Chalice
1 Future Sight
1 Followed Footsteps
1 Crystal Shard
1 Darksteel Ingot
1 Soliton
1 Horseshoe Crab
1 Nomadic Elf
1 Bloom Tender
1 Time Stretch
1 Thousand-Year Elixir
1 Erratic Portal
1 Contagion Clasp
1 Sage of Fables
1 Viral Drake
1 Thornling
1 Sphinx of Magosi
1 Cytoplast Manipulator
1 Ant Queen
1 Plaxcaster Frogling
1 Enclave Cryptologist
1 Joraga Treespeaker
1 Momir Vig, Simic Visionary
1 Trygon Predator
1 Root Greevil
1 Wickerbough Elder
1 Vigor
1 Master of the Wild Hunt
1 Fauna Shaman
1 Plaguemaw Beast
1 Chameleon Colossus
1 Simic Guildmage
1 Simic Ragworm
1 Devoted Druid
1 Sensei's Divining Top
1 Lightning Greaves
1 Whispersilk Cloak
1 Overbeing of Myth
1 Umbral Mantle
1 Jade Mage
1 Garruk's Horde
1 Frost Titan
1 Krosan Grip
1 Sword of the Paruns
1 Doubling Season
1 Spitting Image
1 Extraplanar Lens
1 Nevinyrral's Disk
1 Garruk Wildspeaker
1 Jace Beleren
1 Primeval Titan
1 Reito Lantern
1 Elvish Aberration

1 Opportunity
17 Forest
17 Island

1 comment:

  1. Interesting absences... I see Contagion Clasp but not Contagion Engine, and while Murkfiend Liege won't let you go infinite, the P/T boost to most of your guys is nice.