Horobi, Death’s Wail is a weird legendary. Maybe not so weird compared with some of the other cards in Kamigawa, but still very unusual and definitely a fun build-around commander. Horobi is extremely difficult to protect and the payoff can be inconsistent, but we get to have the Scale and Tooth of Chiss-Goria as real cards in our deck, so I think it’s all worth it.

 

Commander (1)

1x Horobi, Death’s Wail

Lands (40)

1x Bojuka Bog

1x Cabal Coffers

1x Command Beacon

1x Crypt of Agadeem

1x Desert

1x Maze of Ith

1x Reliquary Tower

1x Rogue’s Passage

1x Shizo, Death’s Storehouse

1x Spawning Pool

1x Strip Mine

25x Swamp

1x Tower of the Magistrate

1x Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth

1x Volrath’s Stronghold

1x Wasteland

Creatures (21)

1x Bloodgift Demon

1x Desecration Demon

1x Drana, Kalastria Bloodchief

1x Entomber Exarch

1x Erebos, God of the Dead

1x Grave Titan

1x Hex Parasite

1x Kozilek, Butcher of Truth

1x Massacre Wurm

1x Nefashu

1x Nezumi Graverobber // Nighteyes the Desecrator

1x Phage the Untouchable

1x Phyrexian Delver

1x Phyrexian Obliterator

1x Phyrexian Rager

1x Royal Assassin

1x Rune-Scarred Demon

1x Sepulchral Primordial

1x Solemn Simulacrum

1x Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre

1x Wurmcoil Engine

Artifacts and Enchantments (16)

1x Caged Sun

1x Cauldron of Souls

1x Icy Manipulator

1x Mana Crypt

1x Mana Vault

1x Mimic Vat

1x Necropotence

1x Nihil Spellbomb

1x No Mercy

1x Oversold Cemetery

1x Phyrexian Arena

1x Phyrexian Reclamation

1x Scale of Chiss-Goria

1x Sol Ring

1x Staff of Nin

1x Tooth of Chiss-Goria

Instants and Sorceries (22)

1x Ashes to Ashes

1x Black Sun’s Zenith

1x Damnation

1x Dark Ritual

1x Demonic Tutor

1x Go for the Throat

1x Grim Tutor

1x Hatred

1x Hex

1x Ill-Gotten Gains

1x Imp’s Mischief

1x Languish

1x Night’s Whisper

1x Profane Command

1x Read the Bones

1x Rise of the Dark Realms

1x Sever the Bloodline

1x Sign in Blood

1x Touch of Darkness

1x Vampiric Tutor

1x Victimize

1x Victim of Night

 

There are a bunch of cards that are only good in combination with Horobi, cards such as Hex Parasite, Nefashu, and Touch of Darkness. Touch of Darkness is fantastic with Horobi, a one mana spell to kill any number of creatures. You always have access to Horobi, of course, but as the commander tax increases, these synergies become less and less viable. Fortunately, we do run a lot of cards that have synergy with Horobi but are decent on their own. Cards like Desert, Icy Manipulator, and Drana, Kalastria Bloodchief are still reasonable cards to play, even when Horobi’s off the table.

This deck runs Desecration Demon. This is an interesting card in multiplayer. A lot of times it’s just going to be a 6/6 flyer for four mana. Your opponents get the chance to sacrifice a creature to tap it down before attackers are declared, so why would a player make a sacrifice if they’re not sure that they will be the one getting attacked?

Diplomacy plays a huge role in EDH strategy. This deck is very good at playing defense. We’re sort of priced into that style of play because in a multiplayer setting, spot removal eventually runs dry. Use your removal only when necessary, and be mindful of how aggressive different players are towards you. In EDH, Hex can be better than Damnation. Damnation can turn everyone against you, but throwing Hex onto the table can lead to brokered deals and established alliances. You can build trust and gain favor with certain players by demonstrating that you won’t kill their creatures even though you can. No Mercy is excellent because it deters all opponents from attacking you without specifically antagonizing any one opponent. Royal Assassin, though much more fragile, works in the same way.

Reliable win conditions in multiplayer often involve infinite combos, Craterhoof Behemoth, or late game value engines. We don’t really have any of those outside our five incredible enchantments, but we have ways to finish, and we definitely have the defensive tools to survive past other players.

Phage the Untouchable – I included this mainly because it’s a funny card. It can kill you if someone flickers it somehow. The only way I see it killing an opponent is if they’re truly out of gas, or if you team up with another opponent and they assist you.

Rise of the Dark Realms – the ultimate payoff to all the kill spells. This card, along with Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre and Kozilek, Butcher of Truth are there to make sure we can end the game if it goes super long. Hatred also fills that role, its cost virtually requiring you to be one of only two remaining players. It can kill out of nowhere and makes any creature a threat. And if the game’s dragging on too long, you can use it to exit the game and maybe take someone else with you.

Have fun, and I’ll see you next week with another Commander deck!

For some Duel Commander goodness, click here.

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