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By: Gumby, Travis George
Dec 18 2007 7:33pm
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To my knowledge, nobody has done a recent counting of creatures for the purpose of showing their legality in the tribal format.  There was one floating around the official MTGO message board, but it was never updated after the release of Coldsnap, so I spent a couple hours sorting and counting for everyone's benefit.

With the release of Lorwyn, we have some exciting possibilities for the tribal format.  Once upon a time we had to use Mistform Ultimus to make tribes that were just shy of the five member requirements.  Now that other non-legendary creatures share the changeling power, we are not bound to this and can build a tribe of any creature type (though I have trouble picturing anyone calling their deck a "blinkmoth deck" when there are zero non-land blinkmoths available online and all creature cards in the deck are changelings).  I will confess to wanting to build a Mongoose tribe since the Kamigawa block forever burned me on snake decks though.

With no further ado, I present the current creature type index.

Creature types with zero creature cards online:
Anemone, Beeble, Blinkmoth, Camarid, Caribou, Citizen, Coward, Deserter, Ferret, Graveborn, Gremlin, Hag, Licid, Monger, Nautilus, Pentavite, Pest, Pincher, Prism, Rabbit, Reflection, Sand, Saproling, Satyr, Scarecrow, Serf, Spawn, Splinter, Sponge, Squid, Starfish, Survivor, Tetravite, Thalakos, Triskelavite, Whale

Creature types with one creature card online:
Anteater, Archon, Assembly-Worker, Brushwagg, Camel, Carrier, Cockatrice, Dauthi, Devil, Dreadnought, Elder, Elk, Harpy, Jellyfish, Lammasu, Manticore, Masticore, Octopus, Orb, Ox, Oyster, Salamander (WOTC, if you're reading this, why couldn't you leave it a lizard? WHY?), Scorpion, Sheep, Soltari, Wombat, Worm

Creature types with two creature cards online:Badger, Egg, Eye, Flagbearer, Goat, Hippo, Homarid, Homunculus, Kobold, Kraken, Phelddagrif, Pirate, Rhino, Rigger, Spike, Squirrel, Thopter, Wolverine

Creature types with three creature cards online:
Bat, Gnome, Hellion, Horse, Kor, Mongoose, Nightstalker, Orgg, Ouphe, Slug, Turtle, Weird, Wraith

Creature types with four creature cards online:
Antelope, Aurochs, Chimera, Crab, Gorgon, Hydra, Pegasus, Phoenix, Unicorn

Fully legal tribes with five or more members (with tribe population in parenthesis):
Advisor (11), Angel (35), Ape (14), Archer (24), Artificer (11), Assassin (18), Atog (11), Avatar (21), Barbarian (24), Basilisk (6), Bear (6), Beast (160), Berserker (16), Bird (99), Boar (10), Bringer (5), Cat (65), Centaur (27), Cephalid (16), Cleric (134), Construct (29), Crocodile (5), Cyclops (8), Demon (23), Djinn (21), Dragon (36), Drake (29), Drone (7), Druid (63), Dryad (14), Dwarf (25), Efreet (12), Elemental (134), Elephant (19), Elf (124), Faerie (30), Fish (6), Fox (19), Frog (11), Fungus (20), Gargoyle (12), Giant (46), Goblin (132), Golem (58), Griffin (17), Horror (58), Hound (13), Human (670), Illusion (44), Imp (14), Incarnation (12), Insect (58), Juggernaut (8), Kavu (49), Kirin (5), Kithkin (28), Knight (80), Leech (6), Leviathan (6), Lhurgoyf (7), Lizard (14), Mercenary (7), Merfolk (54), Metathran (5), Minion (22), Minotaur (12), Monk (19), Moonfolk (16), Mutant (39), Myr (20), Mystic (5), Nephilim (5), Nightmare (21), Ninja (9), Nomad (2 ), Ogre (35), Ooze (7), Orc (9), Plant (16), Rat (28), Rebel (24), Rogue (57), Samurai (37), Scout (29), Serpent (11), Shade (11), Shaman (120), Shapeshifter (31), Skeleton (12), Slith (6), Sliver (62), Snake (37), Soldier (196), Specte (10), Spellshaper (19), Sphinx (6), Spider (15), Spirit (262), Thrull (11), Treefolk (29), Troll (13), Vampire (17), Vedalken (13), Viashino (16), Volver (5), Wall (52), Warrior (165), Wizard (274), Wolf (7), Wurm (34), Yeti (7), Zombie (158), Zubera (6)

I'd like to take this time to let everyone know that you no longer have an excuse when you say "I did not know $oddball-tribe was even a tribe," when I drop a crab deck on you.   In addition, for the benefit of those of us that are just discovering Onslaught block Elves and "unusual" Sliver decks, there are other much more interesting tribes to both build a deck with and play against.  Let's take Archers for instance.  Nothing overly spectacular as far as powers go, most have either some kind of ping-flying-creature or reach abilities, many for more than one point of damage. Flying Carpet and Wind Dancer come to mind.  Or maybe Trolls are more your style, surviving destruction and all, Plague Boiler and Worldslayer look interesting to you?

WotC Strike Team
4x Tsabo's Assassin
4x Royal Assassin
4x Abyssal Hunter
3x Unliving Psychopath
3x Nekrataal
2x Kiku, Night's Flower

Secret Hideouts:
20x Swamp
4x Barren Moor
Tools of the Trade:
4x Distorting Lens
4x Sinister Strength
3x Dark Ritual
3x Nightmare Lash
2x Loxodon Warhammer

Maybe those tribes are a little passive for your taste; nothing says "I'm going to kill you" quite like an assassin deck... like this set of cards I'm sending to Wizards' corporate headquarters to rectify certain things I did not like about the re-oracle project.  Prime example,  Wirefly Hive originally read  Pay 3 and Tap: Flip a coin.  If you win the flip put a 2/2 Wirefly creature token with flying into play under your controll.  If you lost the flip, destroy all wireflies.  If now reads If you win the flip, put a 2/2 insect creature token with flying named wirefly into play under your controll.  If you lost the flip, destroy all creatures named wirefly.  Originaly this could be played in combo with Artificial Evolution during tribal games to obliterate your opponent's creatures, just change wirefly to whatever tribe your opponent is playing then wait until you lose a flip and get what is in essence a one-sided Wrath of God.  I admit that combo fell into my "dirty tricks" category of stuff (and the combo still works with Pure Reflection if you're rolling white mana),  right up there with Plague Sliver and Artificial Evolution, and the cbut that doesn't make me any happier that I can't use it anymore. 

Plague Sliver
Artificial Evolution

Poisonbelly Hippos

Hungry Hungry Phelddagrifs:
4x Phelddagrif
4x Questing Phelddagrif
4x Shapesharer
4x Woodland Changeling
4x Mirror Entity

Poison:4x Poisonbelly Ogre
4x Kodama's Reach
4x Fertile Ground
4x Blanchwood Armor

Marbles:13x Forest
4x City of Brass
1x Golgari Rot Farm
1x Azorius Chancery
1x Simic Growth Chamber
1x Selesnya Sanctuary
1x Swamp
1x Island
1x Plains

Also, there are some pretty silly overly-specific creature types still left which was what Wizards said they were fixing.  I've already mentioned salamander above, talk about wrecking a pump-lizard deck, but other things like Elk couldn't have been lumped in with Antelope?  Wildebeests are not Antelope, yet Stampeding Wildebeests gets the Antelope creature type, yet Gang of Elk (which works great with Lure by the way) is still just an Elk.  Next in line, what exactly is a "Carrier" anyway?  Phyrexian Plaguelord is one of my favorite cards from Urza's Legacy and I was thrilled when they reprinted him for 8th edition, but that doesn't answer my question... what is a carrier?  Phelddagrifs and Hippos, why are these seperate?  The artwork for both Phelddagrif creatures look like hippos with wings, wouldn't "Hippo Beast" have been a much better choice for them?  I'd love to build a tribal deck using either Phelddagrif to create a spiffy combo with Poisonbelly Ogre and lot of green mana.  It looks like I'm going to need lots of the new changelings to make it legal though since ogres are mostly the wrong color and don't have good support for the combo, and Shapesharer can be used to copy Poisonbelly Ogre.  I'll have to try this when I get my hands on some phelddagrifs.
Poisonbelly Ogre

They're your cards, play whatever you'd like.  Just thought I would mention that you might enjoy the Tribal format a bit more if you did not play with something that had been thought of at least five years before you put the cards together.   Thanks for reading my first article and if anyone from Wizards of the Coast reads this, if you print a Unicorn creature with  T: Target nonland permanent becomes an enchantment in addition to its other types, and WW: Return target creature in a graveyard that was sacrificed this turn to its owner's hand, all will be forgiven and the strike team will be called off.

Until next time,


by Gumby at Thu, 12/20/2007 - 10:23
Gumby's picture

Ooof.  Didn't know anyone else took over the project, forgive me for not going past the first couple pages of the forum.

 The original thread in question predates the move to gleemax and the author, I forget who, said they were no longer interested in updating the thread.

Btw, if anyone read far enough to see the Phelddagrif deck, it works a lot better to pull all the non-basic lands, add in 4 thawing glaciers, then fill it with basics, remove the kodama's reach and replace with stone-seeder heirophant, actually won a few games.

MTGO Tribal Primar by tempesteye at Wed, 12/19/2007 - 17:22
tempesteye's picture

Hey, you might be thinking of the thread (on the Wizards BBS) that I update with every release:

State of the Union for Online Tribal

I haven't been able to update it yet for the Weatherlight release but it will be current when Morningtide goes live.