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By: Leviathan, Mike Morales
Nov 17 2010 2:44am
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We now have the Golgari deck to build.  Green and Black are traditionally the colors of life and death.  Green loves nature and big beasts.  Black loves power and big scary monsters.  With both colors bringing the beats, I'm guessing the combination should do fairly well in creature combat.  Sounds like they should go together like peanut butter and jelly to me.

Another Green Lantern, but no White this time.

There are actually a few popular commanders out there in this color combination.  I built a Nath of the Gilt-Leaf deck when he first came out, and it was pretty fun.  For me, at least.  However, I definitely did not make any friends with this deck, as random discard pleases no one on the receiving end.  Another popular commander is Savra, Queen of the Golgari.  Savra is definitely a "build around me" general, with a lot of sacrificing and Grave Pact effects.  However, I wanted to work with something a little less played.  Vhati il-Dal isn't overly popular, but I'd rather attack with my general and it seem like he would be held back most of the time.  You guys already know who I picked, so I guess I will just shut up now.


Let's take a look at our Commander:

sapling of colfenor

Sapling has a couple of good things going for her.  First, she's indestructible.  That's pretty sweet, actually.  You don't have to worry about Wrath of God, Oblivion Stone or Damnation destroying your general.  Just keep in mind that this won't prevent her from being tucked by Condemn.  Second, she has the ability to draw you cards, just by attacking!  So you can send her into the storm with impunity, not worrying about whether she will survive, to see what's on the top of your deck.  Keep in mind, however, that you will only draw the card if it is a creature.  That obviously means that we are going to focus on a creature heavy/centric deck.  Finally, you have the ability to gain life with Sapling.  This is minor, but can be useful.

What are her drawbacks?  Well, she costs a lot.  At 5 mana, she probably won't be coming out extremely quickly.  But on top of that, she only has 2 power.  That's just sad.  However, we don't need for her to be a powerhouse, as we are going to have our other creatures in the deck do the dirty work for us.  She only needs to draw cards and be indestructible.  She's also a good roadblock against big scary monsters as well.

Before I show you the deck, I'm going to show you a card that seems to be popular in Sapling decks, but that I did not include.  Here it is:


If you equip Sapling with Worldslayer and there is an open opponent, you pretty much have the game sealed up.  Of course, it's not a foregone conclusion that you will win, as someone can draw a random Path to Exile.  But then it's just everyone starting over.  Meanwhile, all you've been doing is attacking for 2 the entire time.  That's just annoying.  I guess you could pack your deck full of Darksteel creatures and stuff as well, so that they would stick around after Worldslayer hits, but I didn't go this route.  If you like this idea, feel free to add it to the deck.  I would probably also include a couple of larger indestructible creatures, like Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre, so that you can at least beatdown quicker.  But it wasn't for me.  With that out of the way, here is the deck:

Sapling of Colfenor
A Commander Deck
1 Acidic Slime
1 Avatar of Woe
1 Avenger of Zendikar
1 Deadwood Treefolk
1 Dread
1 Duplicant
1 Fauna Shaman
1 Genesis
1 Geth, Lord of the Vault
1 Grave Titan
1 Grave-Shell Scarab
1 Graveborn Muse
1 Ink-Eyes, Servant of Oni
1 Lord of Extinction
1 Mephidross Vampire
1 Multani, Maro-Sorcerer
1 Nezumi Graverobber
1 Oracle of Mul Daya
1 Pelakka Wurm
1 Pestilence Demon
1 Primeval Titan
1 Puppeteer Clique
1 Rampaging Baloths
1 Sapling of Colfenor
1 Shriekmaw
1 Silklash Spider
1 Solemn Simulacrum
1 Spiritmonger
1 Terastodon
1 Tornado Elemental
1 Triskelion
1 Vigor
1 Vulturous Zombie
1 Wickerbough Elder
1 Woodfall Primus
1 Xathrid Demon
1 Yavimaya Dryad
1 Yavimaya Elder
38 cards

Other Spells
1 Loxodon Warhammer
1 Oblivion Stone
1 Well of Lost Dreams
1 Defense of the Heart
1 Gift of the Deity
1 Lurking Predators
1 Mirri's Guile
1 Phyrexian Arena
1 Phyrexian Reclamation
1 Storm Front
1 Sylvan Library
1 The Abyss
1 Wild Pair
1 Putrefy
1 Rootgrapple
1 Beacon of Unrest
1 Damnation
1 Maelstrom Pulse
1 Natural Order
1 Primal Command
1 Profane Command
1 Scapeshift
1 Sylvan Scrying
1 Tooth and Nail
24 cards
1 Bojuka Bog
1 Cabal Coffers
1 Crypt of Agadeem
1 Gaea's Cradle
1 Ghost Quarter
1 Golgari Rot Farm
1 Llanowar Wastes
1 Mikokoro, Center of the Sea
1 Miren, the Moaning Well
1 Mosswort Bridge
1 Mouth of Ronom
1 Overgrown Tomb
1 Phyrexian Tower
1 Reliquary Tower
1 Shizo, Death's Storehouse 
9 Snow-Covered Forest
7 Snow-Covered Swamp
1 Treetop Village
1 Twilight Mire
1 Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth
1 Verdant Catacombs
1 Vivid Grove
1 Vivid Marsh
1 Volrath's Stronghold
38 cards



The deck actually has less creatures than I was originally going for, but I just couldn't cut some of my non-creature spells.  Oh well.  Anyway, here's a breakdown of the card categories:

geth, lord of the vault Deadwood TreefolkGenesisGeth, Lord of the VaultInk-Eyes, Servant of OniNezumi GraverobberPuppeteer CliqueVolrath's StrongholdPhyrexian ReclamationBeacon of UnrestProfane Command
Deadwood Treefolk, Genesis, Geth, Lord of the Vault, Ink-Eyes, Servant of Oni, Nezumi Graverobber, Puppeteer Clique, Volrath's Stronghold, Phyrexian Reclamation, Beacon of Unrest, Profane Command:  You are going to be playing with a bunch of big scary dudes, and there are times when you are going to want them back.  In addition, you may also want to play with the creatures in your opponents' graveyards as well.  Well, here you go.  I've been waiting to draw Geth, but he hasn't come up yet.  I'm sure he will rock though.
Targeted Removal  
rootgrapple Acidic SlimeAvatar of WoeDuplicantShriekmawTerastodonWickerbough ElderWoodfall PrimusPutrefyRootgrappleMaelstrom PulseProfane CommandMouth of Ronom
Acidic Slime, Avatar of Woe, Duplicant, Shriekmaw, Terastodon, Wickerbough Elder, Woodfall Primus, Putrefy, Rootgrapple, Maelstrom Pulse, Profane Command, Mouth of Ronom:  You have a variety of ways of getting rid of various problems.  And if you use creatures for your dirty work and they die, you can usually get them back with your recursion.  Snow lands are in there specifically for use with Mouth of Ronom.  And you should usually have a treefolk out for drawing your extra card with Rootgrapple.
Defense of the Heart

Fauna ShamanDefense of the HeartWild PairNatural OrderTooth and Nailprimal command
Fauna Shaman, Defense of the Heart, Wild Pair, Natural Order, Tooth and Nail, Primal Command:  Occasionally you are going to need an answer, and you are going to want that answer right now.  Use these tutors to get what you want.

In addition, you may have noticed the 2 creature combos in the deck.  The first is the traditional Mephidross Vampire/Triskelion combo.  The second is Pestilence Demon/Vigor.  I don't feel bad about playing either of these combos, as they are both pretty easy to disrupt.  But if you don't want answers to enchantments or artifacts, these are probably the creatures you want to search up with Defense of the Heart and Tooth and Nail.   

Creature Control  
Gift of the Deity

DreadPestilence DemonDamnationGift of the DeityThe Abyss 
Dread, Pestilence Demon, Damnation, Gift of the Deity, The Abyss:  You have a couple of good methods of creature control in the deck.  If you have Sapling out, The Abyss has practically no effect on you.  Just choose to target Sapling, which cannot be destroyed, and then go about your business.  Good times!

Gift of the Deity is pretty cool.  It pumps Sapling and gives her Lure and deathtouch.  Since she's indestructible, she will stick around so that you can attack someone else again next turn.  I like it a lot. 

Flying Defense  
storm front

Silklash SpiderTornado ElementalStorm Front
Silklash Spider, Tornado Elemental, Storm Front:  When I made this deck, I was fairly concerned about Skithiryx.  Therefore, I added a few methods of dealing with him.  As long as Skittles doesn't have shroud, you should be able to tap him down with Storm Front.  The Spider can oftentimes have enough mana to destroy him if you are prepared.

In addition, there are a couple of flyers in the deck itself, so you can oftentimes have a blocker anyways.   

Now there probably isn't as much mass removal in the deck as you may expect.  With only Damnation and Oblivion Stone, you may be in trouble sometimes.  But I didn't often find it to be an issues.  If you want more, feel free to include Decree of Pain and Nevinyrral's Disk.

Since the draw depends on having a creature on the top of your deck, it is nice to stack it.  Deck stacking is performed here by Mirri's Guile and Sylvan Library.  These are good for making sure that you do draw a creature when Sapling attacks.  You can also use Sensei's Divining Top if you want, I just didn't want to have to deal with activating it all the time.  Since you actually gain life every time you draw a card with Sapling, Well of Lost Dreams can allow you to draw more.

Scapeshift and Primeval Titan are great at searching up Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth and Cabal Coffers together.  In addition, I really wanted Xathrid Demon to work.  He is a pretty big beater on his own, and if you have out a decent sized Lord of Extinction or Multani, Maro-Sorcerer, that can really hurt your opponents.  Plus, who doesn't like a big hungry demon on their team?

So basically this is a creature beat down deck.  Play your critters and stomp on people.  There aren't a whole lot of tricks, and with only 2 Instants in the deck, it reminds me of the decks that I used to play with.  So you will get beat by combo, but there are plenty of times you are going to just squish people.  Good times.  So let's see how the deck does.


Here are my opponents:

Xira Arien Adun Oakenshield Rhys the Redeemed
Two Jund decks and a token deck.  Xira can be just about anything.  I guess it's possible that it could be a Warp World deck like the one I wrote about a while ago, but I think I wouldn't be that bad off if it was.  Adun is built in recursion, so I expect a lot of creatures.  And Rhys is token beat down usually.  So there is probably a lot of creature combat coming up here.  I win the roll. My hand:
Expensive spells, but land is all right, and I keep.  I'm looking forward to sacing my Wurm to my Demon in the future, or hopefully a really large Vulturous Zombie.  As usual, X = Xira, A = Adun and R = Rhys.
Round 1
Me: Draw Llanowar Wastes, play Forest.
X: Mosswort Bridge.
A: Forest.
R: Razorverge Thicket.
Round 2
Me: Draw Swamp, play Llanowar Wastes.
X: Gilt-Leaf Palace.
A: Swamp, Culling Dais.
culling dais
Interesting card draw.
R: Plains, Sylvan Ranger, searching up a Forest.
Round 3
Me:  Draw Mosswort Bridge and play it. I see Mouth of Ronom, Forest, Sylvan Library and Tornado Elemental. I put the Elemental under the Bridge.
X: Mountain, Fauna Shaman.
A: Mountain, then play Adun Oakenshield.
R: Forest, then Harrow, sacing the Forest to get a Forest and a Plains. Then plays Kazandu Tuskcaller.
Round 4
Me: Draw a Swamp and play it. Haven’t drawn any sort of early turn plays.
X: Plays Rix Maadi, Dungeon Palace. Then cycles Krosan Tusker for a Swamp.
A: Swamp.
R: Mystifying Maze.  Levels up Tuskcaller twice. This hasn’t been the fastest game so far, and I am fine with that.
Round 5 
Me: Draw Triskelion, and play Forest, then Vulturous Zombie. X uses Fauna Shaman to discard Thunderscape Battlemage for Kagemaro, First to Suffer. Then A Terminates the Fauna Shaman.
kagemaro, first to suffer
Can take out indestructible creatures if you have enough cards in hand.
X: Highland Weald, then Sword of Body and Mind. Since everyone is playing Green, that’s a handy Sword to have.
A: Reflecting Pool. At the end of the turn, R uses Tuskcaller to make an elephant.
R: Levels up Tuskcaller 2 more times and plays Rhys. Attacks X with the elephant (37).
Round 6 
Me: Draw Vigor, play Swamp. I attack A with my Zombie (37) and then play Sapling. R makes an elephant.
X: Plays Graven Cairns, then Kagemaro. Has 5 cards in hand, so blows up the board. A sacs Adun to Culling Dais. I wasn’t worried about Kagemaro right away, as he only had 1 source of Black mana before this turn. Otherwise I wouldn’t have played Sapling. Oh well.
A: Forest, then Adun again.
R: Ant Queen.
Round 7
Me: Draw Silklash Spider, and play a Swamp. Then Pelakka Wurm (47).
X: Swamp, then Geth, Lord of the Vault. There’s some decent stuff in the graveyards right now, so he is going to be handy. A sacs Adun to Culling Dais again, giving it 2 counters.  A then sacs the Dais to draw 2 cards.
A: Mountain, then Duplicant, taking out Geth.  Well that solves that problem.
R: Plains, then Sun Titan, returning Sylvan Ranger to play, which searches up a Forest.  There's not a lot for R to recur, but Sun Titan is still scary.  Then attacks X with Ant Queen (32).
Round 8
Me: Draw my Duplicant. I cast it, taking out the Sun Titan. Then attack R with my Wurm (33).
X: Necrotic Ooze and equips it with Sword of Body and Mind.
A: Puppeteer Clique.
puppeteer clique
Gonna be seeing this a lot.
Uses the Clique to get Kagemaro from X’s graveyard. A has 6 cards in hand, so he activates Kagemaro, killing everything except my Pelakka Wurm. The Clique persists, returning my Duplicant to play and removing the Wurm from the game. Using my own Duplicant to get rid of my Pelakka Wurm is a nice touch. Mountain, then Carnage Altar. Then attacks me with the Duplicant (40), which is removed from the game at the end of the turn.
R: Forest, Behemoth Sledge and Rhys.
Round 9
Me: Draw Genesis. There are enough creatures in the graveyard that I can cheaply play Avatar of Woe, and do so. I also play Silklash Spider.
X: Casts a Puppeteer Clique of his own, getting A’s Duplicant from his graveyard. The Duplicant takes out my Avatar of Woe, and X then equips it with Sword of Body and Mind. Attacks R with the Duplicant (25) and gets a wolf token. Plays a Forest. Duplicant is exiled at the end of the turn.
A: Taiga, Deathrender and equips his Puppeteer Clique.
Interesting equipment that can lead to fun plays if you have a sac outlet.
R: Forest, then Terastodon. The big elephant takes out X’s Sword of Body and Mind, and A’s Deathrender and Carnage Altar. In response, A sacs his Clique to the Altar. Deathrender puts Bogardan Hellkite into play, which kills Rhys and hits R for 4 (21). Then elephants are handed out.  Looks like R may have made an enemy.
Round 10
Me: Draw Avenger of Zendikar. I play Sapling.
X: Spinerock Knoll, then Phyrexian Delver, getting Necrotic Ooze back into play (28). I’m not really sure what the Ooze can do at this point, but I don’t think it’s a whole lot. 
A: Attacks R with the Hellkite (16). Then casts Damnation. X’s Puppeteer Clique persists, getting R’s Terastodon, which takes out my Mosswort Bridge (sad times), R’s Behemoth Sledge, and A’s Reflecting Pool. Elephants are handed out. Then A casts Corpse Connoisseur, putting Genesis in his graveyard. 
R: Garruk Wildspeaker, and uses him to make a beast. Then casts Oust targeting the Terastodon, and X goes to (31), but before Oust resolves, X activates Mosswort Bridge putting Oracle of Mul Daya into play, which reveals Broodmate Dragon.
Round 11
Me: Draw a Swamp and play it. As there aren't any big scary creatures out there that I have to worry about attacking me, I attack Garruk with Sapling, just to try and draw a card, which I do, getting Dread. R blocks with the beast token. I then cast the Dread I just drew.
X: Draws Broodmate, revealing Savage Twister. This is important later. Plays the Double Dragons.
A: Uses Genesis to return the Puppeteer Clique to his hand, and plays it, getting the Phyrexian Delver from X’s graveyard. The Delver gets Bogardan Hellkite (29), which takes out X’s original Broodmate Dragon and Puppeteer Clique. Delver is removed from the game at the end of the turn.
R: Makes another beast with Garruk. Keeping mana back to use Mystifying Maze if necessary.
Round 12
Me: Draw a Forest. I attack X with my Sapling, but it reveals Twilight Mire. X blocks with the dragon token. I forgot to attack with Dread.  Oh well.  I then make a dumb mistake and play Avenger of Zendikar, completely forgetting about the Savage Twister on the top of X’s library. Finally, I play a Forest to pump my plants.
X: Draws the Twister, revealing Siege-Gang Commander. Twister’s for 7, killing everything except Sapling. A’s Puppeteer Clique persists, and he grabs X’s Puppeteer Clique, which grabs my Avenger of Zendikar, giving A 8 plants. 
A: Plays a Mountain, pumping the plants. Then attacks R with everything except one of the plants.  R uses Mystifying Maze on the Avenger, since it’s the biggest creature coming at him. This is great for me, obviously. R drops to (4). Then A casts Moriok Replica. At the end of the turn, my Avenger of Zendikar is returned to play for me, giving me 8 tokens, and X’s Puppeteer Clique is removed from the game.
R: Casts Terastodon, taking out A’s Taiga and 2 Swamps, which were his only sources of Black mana. 
Large and pretty useful.
A sacs the Replica (27) in response, drawing 2 cards. R then uses Garruk to untap 2 lands and play Llanowar Elves.
Round 13
Me: I draw Vivid Marsh, which is strange because the card should have been the Twilight Mire that was revealed when I attacked with Sapling last turn.  Really strange.  I cast Vigor and then play the Vivid Marsh, pumping my plants. I attack X with 3 plants and Sapling (which reveals my Puppeteer Clique (39)) and A with 2 plants and Avenger of Zendikar, keeping back a couple of plants for defense. X drops to (26) while A blocks my plants and Avenger, pumping them.
X: Siege-Gang Commander, then activates Rix Maadi, Dungeon Palace. X discards Genesis, A discards Woodfall Primus, R discards Verdant Embrace, and I discard Genesis. There are now 3 different players with Genesis in the graveyard.  At the end of turn A casts Worldly Tutor for Solemn Simulacrum.
A: Forest, then the Sad Robot, getting a Swamp. Attacks R with 3 elephants and Puppeteer Clique, which takes out R.
Round 14
Me: Draw Defense of the Heart. I attack X with Vigor, 2 plants and Saproling (which reveals Phyrexian Arena) and A with 2 plants and Avenger of Zendikar. X blocks one plant with Siege-Gang and drops to (14) while A blocks with a bunch of plants and the Sad Robot. I then cast Defense of the Heart.
X: Uses Genesis to return Necrotic Ooze to her hand, and plays it. 
A: Uses Genesis to return Solemn Simulacrum to hand, and plays it after dropping a Swamp. Searches up another Swamp. Then evokes Shriekmaw, killing my Vigor, which shuffles back into my library.
Round 15
Me: Defense of the Heart triggers. None of the creatures my opponents control have defense greater than 3, and I have 6 sources of Black mana. So I search up Pestilence Demon and Vigor. I then start activating the Demon to kill my opponents creatures, do them damage, and make my guys huge. X tries to slow me down my using Necrotic Ooze’s Kagemaro ability, but she only has 2 cards in hand, and it isn’t enough.
After clearing the table, my guys are big enough to march in and take out both players.


The MVP of the game for my opponents was this card:

puppeteer clique

This card is great at reusing cards in the graveyard, and also exiling something you are worried about having to see again.  And when facing off against a couple of green decks, you can be sure that there will be at least a few utility creatures in the graveyard.  It's a pretty good card that you should consider using in almost all of your decks that use Black.

So the deck is pretty much straight beat down, which is a fun change of pace if you are used to playing control.  With a couple of little synergies and combos in the deck, you should be able to clear the way for your large beasts to mash face.  There isn't a whole lot of defense in the deck against combo and graveyard hate, so if you want, feel free to add Relic of Progenitus.

You can check out the deck for download or purchase HERE.  The deck comes out to around 215 tickets, which is sort of pricey.  Avenger of Zendikar, Primeval Titan and Natural Order are the 3 most expensive cards in the deck.  The Order can be replaced with something like Worldly Tutor but the other two are tough.  I guess Journeyer's Kite is repeatable land search.  Keep in mind that Survival of the Fittest is a great card that you should add if you own one.  I just noticed that Survival is now over 60 tix, and I'm glad I picked up my copy a while ago.  Another card that would be useful is Pernicious Deed, which is a lot cheaper than it used to be.

Hope you liked the deck.  Until next week!

Leviathan, aka Tarasco on MTGO
mrmorale32 at yahoo dot com



I tried very hard to make by Paul Leicht at Wed, 11/17/2010 - 04:58
Paul Leicht's picture

I tried very hard to make pestilence/pestilence demon + vigor + creatures to work in tribal. It had almost no success except against goblins and elves (go figure) where it was usually just able to squeak out a win. Also it's like you were reading my mind with this deck. Only my words in my head were a little fuzzy as I just built a Teneb deck with a very similar theme. I am missing some of the cards you used but otherwise very close. (Minus the white cards.) Green Lantern is my 2nd favorite DC hero after Green Arrow. And right ahead of Captain Marvel. (Not the cosmic wanderer from Marvel comics so we are clear but the guy who gets his power from an old shaman named Shazam.)

New Favorites by Lythand at Wed, 11/17/2010 - 16:48
Lythand's picture

I have to say I am surprised not to see Lurking Predators. Predators comboed with Cream of the Crop rocks.

NM by Lythand at Wed, 11/17/2010 - 17:17
Lythand's picture

I found Lurking Predators. Just need cream of the Crop

Cream of the Crop is by Leviathan at Wed, 11/17/2010 - 21:47
Leviathan's picture

Cream of the Crop is definitely worthy of consideration. I wouldn't take a creature out for it though. Either Mirri's Guile or Well of Lost Dreams cango out for it. Or if you aren't worried about fliers you can take out Storm Front.

cool deck by rgp2373 at Fri, 11/19/2010 - 11:14
rgp2373's picture

Gave a version of it a try, amongst other tweaks, I put in eternal witness and nim deathmantle. The nim deathmantle combined with the sac outlet is just a great little combo to begin with, and used it for much fun and profit with terrastodon and the yavimaya dryad, but nothing beat recurring damnation over and over with eternal witness.

BTW, how did you change your MTGO screen appearance from the default?

I can't believe I forgot the by Leviathan at Fri, 11/19/2010 - 14:16
Leviathan's picture

I can't believe I forgot the Witness. That card definitely warrants inclusion.

Deathmantle is a cool card, I like that idea. What other sac outlets did you include in your version?

Edit: tou have to go to display settings to change it. I use compact mode. I think the default is big card, which takes up a lot of the play area.

I didn't really add any other by rgp2373 at Fri, 11/19/2010 - 16:15
rgp2373's picture

I didn't really add any other sac outlets beyond the moaning well and the phyrexian tower. Didn't have it in mind when I built it, but might add in the bloodthrone vampire and nantuko husk to keep with the aggro/high creature count theme.