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Paint it Black: a Standard Mono Black Build
Paul's Perspective
06.28.11

Welcome back readers today as a departure from my normal multiplayer oriented columns I am diving into the world of standard after the recent upheaval regarding the banning of two of the most powerful cards in standard. Today I am focusing on tuning a mono black deck for the standard environment; I haven’t tested this build it is just an idea to help spark deck creation ideas and I am not as brilliant a standard player as I am at multiplayer (I am also very humble!) I will go through my card selection as I recommend players sling the power of swamps, any advice for this build would be appreciated, currently in standard I am focusing on a mono green infect deck so this build may not see the light of day but is merely an exercise in brewing and thinking about the new standard format, now without further delay the deck.

 

Mana base 24

X4 Tectonic Edge

X4 Marsh Flats

X4 Verdant Catacombs

X12 Swamp

 

Regarding the mana base running only one color means Tectonic Edge is an auto include and with the perceived popularity of Valakut after the banning running Edge’s is important being able to randomly hose man-lands is also a plus. The fetch lands while making the deck more expensive cost wise, help thin out lands and provide fuel for another card in the deck.

 

Creatures 17

X4 Phyrexian Obliterator

X3 Ob Nixilis, The Fallen

X4 Hex Parasite

X4 Gatekeeper of Malakir

X2 Sherold The Whispering One

 

Ob Nixilis is a beast when used in conjunction with fetch lands and provides a reasonably beefy body for the cost. Phyrexian Obliterator is one of the primary reasons to go mono black while providing a clock and a must deal with threat that can end the game quickly. Hex Parasite is a concession to planeswalkers and other cards utilizing counters such as Everflowing Chalice it may not warrant maindeck inclusion but I would try and keep some copies somewhere in the 75. Gatekeeper of Malakir makes an early and lonely Spellkite looks really silly and does a good job of mopping up singular Titans starring at you from across the board. Finally Sherold if she sticks turns into pure advantage forcing your opponents to sacrifice creature after creature and allowing you to recur Gatekeeper to keep creature swarms at bay or recur fallen threats such as Obliterator to seal the deal.

 

  

 

Other

X4 Inquistion of Kozilek

X3 Despise

X3 Dismember

X4 Lashwrithe

X4 Go For The Throat

X1 Black Suns Zenith

 

I prefer Duress as opposed to Inquisition of Kozilek as it provides a catch all answer to everything noncreature or land, but in a format filled with Splinter Twin decks nailing an early Deceiver Exarch or a problem card. Despise can take care of planeswalkers such as Jace Beleren and also provides a way to remove Deceiver Exarch and titans and as well as other problem creatures. Dismember is one of the best removal spells in the format and can kill a large variety of creatures excluding titans. Being able to pay mana for Dismember instead of just life allows for some flexability. Lashwrithe is a finisher, threat all in one card it can swing for the fences or become equipped to a meeker creature such as Gatekeeper and Hex Parasite to provide a clock if they deal with the germ token. Go For The Throat is arguably the best removal in standard it kills all the titans and relevant creatures except for Spellkite. Finally a lone Black Sun rounds out the maindeck providing an answear to token and creature swarm strategies. Finally the sideboard.

 

Sideboard 15

X4 Surgical Extraction

X3 Memoricide

X4 Vampire Nighthawk

X2 Duress

X2 Black Suns zenith

 

Surgical Extraction is for the combo decks of the format such as Splinter Twin, Valakut and the off chance of Bloodcrank decks. Memoricide does it part removing Titans from opposing decks such as Valakut. Vampire Nighthawk is just a solid creature and the debate could be made for this maindeck instead of Hex Parasite as Lashwrite with Nighthawk is sick. Nighthawk also can provide lifegain against aggressive decks such as red deck wins if it sticks. Duress is extra discard powerful is better suited for control match ups. Black Suns Zenith is once again a concession to creature swarm decks as sometimes dropping a black sun and then a Whispering One is good game. There may be better options for the sideboard and I am eager to discuss possible choices. Finally a few cards that dident make the deck but may be considerations.

 

Nantuko Shade

I feel there are better things to do early in the game and pumping mana into this leaves less for our reactive kill cards such as Go For The Throat. Dies to removal is not an argument but Gatekeeper can get it abilities as can Hex Parasite, Obliterator hurts opponents if they try to burn it and Ob Nixilis and Sherold are hard to take down with burn. Nantuko Shade I feel in the new format reads” target player discards a burn card from his or her hand or if they have an Ember Hauler your screwed as well” and leaving up mana to protect it is just bad. I know this has historically been a mono black juggernaut but I am not sold on its inclusion here.

 

Grave Titan

Now this fella is sick it could be possible to drop the Ob Nixilis all together and run Grave Titans instead recurring one with Sherold is sick and Lashwrite on a humble zombie token can end games quickly. The more I think about it Grave Titan seems to be the better choice.

 

Sign in Blood

Card draw is always good but finding room is key, Sign in Blood gives you more options which is always a good thing. If dropping the fetch lands and running Grave Titan and more swamps suits you feel free.

 

Overall if I was running this deck in standard as of new week I would replace the Ob Nixilis with Grave Titan and the fetches with swamps and try to cram in Sign in Blood. I hope you enjoyed another brief trip into standard now with Jace banned more and more strategies are opening up for players I hope you have as much fun with standard in the coming months as I do.

 

Mana base 24

X4 Tectonic Edge

X20 Swamp

 

Creatures 16

X4 Phyrexian Obliterator

X2 Grave Titan

X4 Vampire Nighthawk

X4 Gatekeeper of Malakir

X2 Sherold The Whispering One

 

Other 20

X3 Inquistion of Kozilek

X3 Despise

X3 Dismember

X4 Lashwrithe

X4 Go For The Throat

X3 Sign in Blood

 

 

Sideboard 15

X4 Surgical Extraction

X3 Memoricide

X4 Hex Parasite

X1 inquistion of Kozilek

X3 Black Suns zenith

 

As always feel free to email me at PlatinumFUBU5@hotmail.com with advice, threats or compliments.

 

    

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