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BMoor's Magic The Gathering Deck Garage
Commande
r Contest Winner #4:
"Dromar's Banishing"
April 19, 2012
 

Welcome back to the Commander Contest winners! This deck I chose because, like Tuesday's Jenara deck, it has a lot of synergy with its general without being too reliant on it. It's full of good cards, but the general makes them all better. Perhaps you'll see what I mean-- here's Dromar the Banisher.
 
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Dromar, the Banisher, by Clayton Romo

This deck is heavily based around flicker/blink effects. All creatures either have an ETB or flicker effect. The commander that I use is a 6/6 flying beater that can easily lock out green and red players. The win condition is to either get 21 commander damage with Dromar or to control the board long enough through shenanigans to be able to beat my opponents down with my smaller creatures. There is no mass removal, but a lot of spot removal. Thanks to flicker abilities and spells, removal is not a problem. The allies play a great role in this deck by creating huge amounts of card advantage (Sea Gate Loremaster, Bala Ged Thief, Agadeem Occultist). There are quite a few (non-infinite) combos hidden throughout the deck (flicker effects + Sundial of the Infinite or Dreams of the Dead) (Sudden Disappearance or Planar Guide + Gather Specimens) (Mnemonic Wall + Ghostway) (Mistmeadow Witch or Venser + Stonehorn Dignitary) In addition to straight up beat down. This deck has won games from dropping Massacre Wurm  against token decks and by using Hagra Diabolist/Jwari Shapeshifter along with a few allies and Ghostway to deal direct damage. I would like to squeeze a Lilliana Vess into the list to add some extra tutoring but I don't know what to take out.

DECK LIST (100)
COMMANDER (1)
Dromar, the Banisher

CREATURES (32)
Agadeem Occultist
Angel of Dispair
Bala Ged Thief
Chancellor of the Spires
Clone
Entomber Exarch
Flickerwisp
Frost Titan
Galepowder Mage
Glimmerpoint Stag
Hagra Diabolist
Halimar Excavator
Jwari Shapeshifter
Man-o'-War
Massacre Wurm
Mistmeadow Witch
Mnemonic Wall
Nekrataal
Nevermaker
Pilgrim's Eye
Planar Guide
Riftwing Cloudskate
Rune-Scarred Demon
Sanctum Gargoyle
Sea Gate Loremaster
Shriekmaw
Skinrender
Stonehorn Dignitary
Sun Titan
Umara Raptor
Vedalken Aethermage
War Priest of Thrune

INSTANTS (16)
Condemn
Counterspell
Gather Specimens
Ghostway
Liberate
Momentary Blink
Mystical Teachings
Otherwordly Journey
Path to Exile
Pull from Eternity
Return to Dust
Slaughter Pact
Spell Crumple
Spin into Myth
Swords to Plowshares
Turn to Mist

SORCERIES (4)
Diabolic Tutor
Fabricate
Flicker
Sudden Disappearance

PLANESWALKERS (2)
Gideon Jura
Venser, the Sojourner

ENCHANTMENTS (1)
Dreams of the Dead

ARTIFACTS (6)
Armillary Sphere
Expedition Map
Oblisk of Esper
Sol Ring
Sundial of the Infinite
Lightning Greaves

LAND (38)
Arcane Sanctum
Calciform Pools
Celestial Colonnade
City of Brass
Command Tower
Creeping Tar Pits
Darkslick Shores
Drowned Catacomb
Glacial Fortress
Grand Colliseum
Isolated Chapel
Jwar Isle Refuge
Mystifying Maze
Reliquarn Tower
Rupture Spire
Seachrome Coast
Sejiri Refuge
Islands (8)
Plains (6)
Swamps (7)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 
Dromar the Banisher is a tricky general to use well. It's devastating against a green or red deck, but if your opponent's worst stuff is all the same color as something of yours, well, then you're setting yourself back as well and bouncing Dromar herself to boot. How do you get around that? Well, you could pack your deck full of Quickchanges and Glamerdyes, but those cards are all borderline-useless until Dromar's ready to swing. What do you do if it doesn't connect? The only other suggestion I've ever heard that I liked was using Dromar as the general of an Esper artifact deck, so that your best creatures were colorless. But of course, all the best Esper artifacts weren't colorless, and most of Mirrodin's best artifacts weren't even creatures in the first place.
 
Clayton, however, has turned this double-edged sword into a boon for you and a bane for them. All of his creatures want to be bounced back to his hand, so that he can recycle their ETB abilities. Your opponent may also have some ETB abilities, but he's unlikely to have as many as Clayton has, or to be as prepared to reuse them. The Ally subtheme was a clever addition-- Sea Gate Loremaster and Agadeem Occultist don't actually have ETB or flicker abilities, but as Allies their entering the field will trigger their fellow Allies' abilities. I also find it clever that Clayton found a use for such a quirky old card as Dreams of the Dead, which slots in perfectly here.

The inclusion of so many flicker effects was a nice choice as well. Not only does this let you reuse an ETB ability on command, but the original use of the flicker effect was to save a creature from a kill spell targeting it or a combat step gone awry. Clayton's opponents will therefore find it quite hard to make his creatures stay dead, and that'll earn him a few victories right there.
 
My feedback? The lack of Spellbook and Venser's Journal is a bit troubling, considering that returning several of your own creatures to hand in one stroke is all part of the plan. But Reliquary Tower is here at least, so Clayton has at least given that problem a little thought. There's also no Soul Warden, Auriok Champion, Soul's Attendant, or Suture Priest-- any one of those seem an obvious include to me. It's true that lifegain is a bit devalued due to the existence of general damage, but driving one's life total high enough so that the enemy's general is the only creature they have capable of  defeating you is still a decent strategy. I'm also a bit disappointed that he included Entomber Exarch but neither Deceiver nor Inquisitor Exarch, but that's less a matter of deck quality and more my own completionism-- even I have to admit that Entomber is the best of the three, and Inquisitor's WW mana cost means that by the time a three-color deck has the mana to cast it, a 2/2 is likely no longer relevant.
 
But these are minor squabbles, and none of them prevented Clayton from winning. Congratulations Clayton, please E-mail me the address you'd like your prize sent to!
 
~BMoor

 

 

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