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Group Hug in EDH


[easybox]Dale Lovelace is a new writer joining the ManaNation team, he is taking over (temporarily) for Ben McDole as our Tuesday EDH / Judge writer. Ben's life has gotten a bit busy and he didn't want to leave ManaNation short handed so he recommended Dale as someone worthy of taking over the EDH torch for a while.[/easybox]

Hello, my name is Dale Lovelace, and I am not a pro player. I'll never be a pro player. I've admitted this to myself, and it's ok. My one claim to fame is making it to nationals... Once... Ten years ago! The majority of my playing these days is Elder Dragon Highlander, and I rarely play EDH to win.

I've been hanging around this game since very near it's beginning, and along the way I've found some interesting ways to amuse myself. Currently I am a level 1 judge and have had the great pleasure in judging everything from drafts where we've had to hoodwink that eighth man into playing, up to Regionals, States, Pro Tour Qualifiers, and even a Pro Tour! I dabble in modifying Magic cards through a variety of means, acrylic paints, markers, laser printer, and I am the only person I know of who has built a card cube robot!

All this to say, this column will not bring you the latest deck tech, I'm not going to be giving you the latest greatest combo, and will most likely never discuss the current metagame. What I hope to bring you are interesting EDH decks that will be fun, EDH rules updates, and a ton of things you can do with the game of Magic, besides playing the game of Magic.

Now on to this week's article. EDH is a game that's about more than just winning. This week I want to talk about a deck that doesn't attempt to win the game at all, but rather helps everyone out, tries to keep things even and fair, and make sure everyone at the table has fun. This is absolutely the most fun EDH deck I've played.



1 Phelddagrif



1 Reveillark

1 Liege of the Hollows

1 Hunted Wumpus

1 Tempting Wurm

1 Questing Phelddagrif

1 Arbiter of Knollridge

1 Loxodon Peacekeeper

1 Ghosts of the Innocent

1 Indentured Djinn

1 Veteran Explorer

1 Eternal Witness

1 Pulsemage Advocate

1 Gwafa Hazid, Profiteer

1 Noble Benefactor

1 Heartwood Storyteller

1 Braids, Conjurer Adept



1 Jace Beleren



1 Seed the Land

1 Fecundity

1 Standstill

1 Hive Mind



1 Skyscribing

1 Prosperity

1 Show and Tell

1 Temporary Truce

1 Weird Harvest

1 Flux

1 Hypergenesis

1 Trade Secrets

1 Austere Command

1 Wrath of God

1 All Suns' Dawn



1 Vision Skeins

1 Beacon of Immortality

1 Second Sunrise

1 Holy Day

1 Words of Wisdom

1 Truce

1 Wheel and Deal

1 Pongify

1 Swords to Plowshares

1 Counterspell

1 Capsize

1 Fold into Aether

1 Arcane Denial

1 Cryptic Command

1 Rewind

1 Ray of Revelation

1 Path to Exile

1 Time Stop

1 Dissipate

1 Mindbreak Trap



1 Darksteel Ingot

1 Spectral Searchlight

1 Sensei's Divining Top

1 Howling Mine

1 Font of Mythos

1 Gate to the Aether

1 Horn of Plenty

1 Anvil of Bogardan

1 Horn of Greed



2 Forest

1 Tranquil Thicket

2 Plains

1 Forbidding Watchtower

1 Eiganjo Castle

1 Kabira Crossroads

2 Island

1 Lonely Sandbar

1 Minamo, School at Water's Edge

1 Graypelt Refuge

1 Arctic Flats

1 Grasslands

1 Wooded Bastion

1 Selesnya Sanctuary

1 Sungrass Prairie

1 Sejiri Refuge

1 Boreal Shelf

1 Flood Plain

1 Nimbus Maze

1 Mystic Gate

1 Skycloud Expanse

1 Azorius Chancery

1 Simic Growth Chamber

1 Flooded Grove

1 Forbidden Orchard

1 Treva's Ruins

1 Mirrodin's Core

1 Bant Panorama

1 Seaside Citadel

1 Springjack Pasture

1 Temple of the False God

1 Reliquary Tower

1 Mikokoro, Center of the Sea

1 Kor Haven

1 Prahv, Spires of Order



There are just a ton of fun cards here. The object of Group Hug is to make sure everyone has a full grip as much as possible, and to keep any one player from dominating the game. Is someone getting low on life? Just help them gain a little. Low on cards? Here draw a few. Armageddon threatening to ruin the game? Counter that!

I try to get Phelddagrif in play as soon as possible, keep my lands untapped in case I need to counter a game wrecking spell, then end of turn on the last player before my turn, dump all my mana into Phelddagrif's abilities letting everyone gain life, get tokens, and even draw cards when I know I have plenty to cast Phelddagrif again.

There are some counters and removal in the deck, these should be used only to keep the game fun, never to advance your own position. Counter anything that would wreck the game, Armageddon, Obliterate (with Mindbreak Trap or Time Stop), Jokalhaups , you get the picture.

Questing Phelddagrif is a better Phelddagrif that, unfortunately, is not Legendary. I use Questing Phelddagrif the same as Phelddagrif, get it in play, then dump all the mana I have into giving out goodies, making sure to give out what is needed.

Reveillark may seem like a strange choice for the deck at first, but I generally evoke Reveillark to bring back one of the really good 2 power creatures, like Braids or Noble Benefactor, and hopefully bring back Eternal Witness as well, which will put Reveillark right back into my hand to do it all again next turn!

Tempting Wurm on turn 2 can make for a interesting game. It's always a good idea to wait until you have a Wrath of God ready just in case the game gets too lopsided after a Tempting Wurm. Hunted Wumpus is a great "mini" Tempting Wurm. These guys usually get big “woot woot” from everyone!

I will cast Standstill then cast another spell to set it off, that usually gets a big laugh out of everyone.

Trade Secrets can be the best tutor in the game. If one player is getting out of hand, and you know you have the answer in your deck somewhere, team up with another player and cast Trade Secrets. Just have your opponent let you keep drawing until you have the answer! If you don't already have Reliquary Tower in play, be sure not to play a land before you go through a huge Trade Secrets, chances are you will draw it and be able to keep all those cards in hand.

Hive mind is a scream! Cast Vision Skeins or All Suns' Dawn with Hive Mind out and get a big “woot woot!" Pacts can, of course, be problematic with Hive Mind in play, so try to keep a counter or two handy.

Beacon of Immortality is targeted, you can use it on someone else! Beacon with Hive Mind!

Spectral Searchlight is great for even giving away mana. Give it someone and now every turn someone will ask you for a little mana. Great for giving someone the color they need to pay for a Hive Mind/Pact as well.

Anvil of Bogardan is a Reliquary Tower for everyone! Get it out as soon as possible so everyone can keep all those cards you're giving them rather than discarding.

Hypergenesis... What can you say about Hypergenesis? The most fun Group Hug games have revolved around a HUGE Hypergenesis. I have seen a 15+ minute Hypergenesis after casting Prosperity for 10 with Anvil of Bogardan on the board the turn before Hypergenesis goes off. If you can time Hypergenesis correctly you can get some board positions that you would normally never dream of. Everyone in the room will gather around to see why the table is completely covered in cards with no room to put even one more card into play!

So there you have it, the Group Hug deck, great fun for everyone. You're sure to make a few friends, and have plenty of laughs. The deck is fairly cheap to build, and will be the first deck requested at every EDH game. Next week we'll take a look at some of the top new Worldwake cards for EDH.

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