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Five Black Decks for Thunder Junction Standard


Hello everyone. As we begin to gear up for the summer, I'm reminded that the next couple of releases for Magic aren't related to Standard products. With just over two months until the release of Bloomburrow, we're entering a lull period for Standard. But, never fear, I have no concerns that I'll be unable to find you new and exciting decks to play during this time. Starting this week and continuing for the following four weeks, I plan to bring you 5 decks each week that are centered around a particular color of mana. I'll be starting with Black, so let's get started.

Mono-Black Crimes

We'll start off this week with a Mono-Black deck that likes to target its opponent and their permanents. Let's take a look at the deck.

Vadmir, New Blood
Each turn you commit a crime by targeting your opponent or one of their cards, you'll be able to place a +1/+1 counter on Vadmir, New Blood. While you can only gain a single +1/+1 counter each turn, you have multiple instants that you can use on your opponent's turn to target their permanents. Once Vadmir gets his fourth +1/+1 counter, he gains both menace and lifelink, so he'll definitely be a target of your opponent's removal.

Another great creature in this deck is Kaervek, the Punisher. Since the plan for this deck is to commit crimes as often as possible, you'll be able to get a crazy amount of value when you have Kaervek on the battlefield. For example, if Kaervek is in play and you cast Deep-Cavern Bat, you'll be able to create a copy of Cut Down from your graveyard that you can cast. That's another crime, which allows Kaervek to copy another Black spell from your graveyard, creating a chain of spells that can help you win the game.

Orzhov Control

Next, we'll add some White mana to the mix and look at an Orzhov deck that uses enchantments to control the game. Let's take a look at the deck.

Feast of the Victorious Dead
Wedding Announcement // Wedding Festivity has been a staple in Standard for many, many months. Not only does it provide you with creature tokens that you can use, it also buffs those tokens a few turns later. By using those creature tokens, along with the creature tokens that you can create with the planeswalkers in this deck, you can end up with a huge amount of power on the battlefield, as well as enough extra life to keep you in the game far longer than your opponent wishes.

The way you'll do this is with the help of Feast of the Victorious Dead. This enchantment lets you gain an amount of life and +1/+1 counters to distribute to your creatures equal to the number of creatures that died this turn. This benefits you in multiple ways. By chump blocking, you get a benefit. By casting a removal spell, you get a benefit. If your opponent casts a removal spell on your creature during your turn, you get a benefit. Feast of the Victorious Dead provides you with a lot of value throughout the game.

Dimir Zombies

The next deck I have for you combines Blue and Black mana with a heaping dose of Zombies. Let's take a look at the deck.

Rotten Reunion
Gisa, the Hellraiser
Geralf, the Fleshwright

Whether you're casting Zombie creature spells, or whether you're creating Zombie creature tokens with the help of Rotten Reunion, Gisa, the Hellraiser, or Geralf, the Fleshwright, you're sure to have a battlefield full of rotting corpses that you can use against your opponent. To make your Zombies a little more durable, if you have Gisa, the Hellraiser on the battlefield, your Zombies will get a +1/+1 bonus and will have menace. There's also Bladestitched Skaab, which provides a +1/+0 bonus to each other Zombie you control.

One card that fits in very nicely in a Zombie typal deck, such as this, is Invasion of Innistrad // Deluge of the Dead. When this Siege enters the battlefield, you can give a creature your opponent controls -13/-13 until the end of the turn. This should generally be enough to destroy that creature. Then, if you manage to defeat this Siege, you'll have a repeatable way of creating additional Zombie creature tokens. Doing this is a great way of removing creatures from your opponent's graveyard, in case they have a way of reanimating those creatures.

Rakdos Rogues

Up next, I have a deck that gains immense value from the various Rogues in it. Let's check it out.

Magda, the Hoardmaster
Treasure tokens abound from this deck, and both you and your opponent will be rolling in them. Generous Plunderer can give both you and your opponent a Treasure token at the beginning of your upkeep. You'll also create a Treasure token once per turn whenever you commit a crime while you have Magda, the Hoardmaster on the battlefield. You can use those Treasure tokens to either cast additional spells, or to create Scorpion Dragon creature tokens with Magda's activated ability.

This deck also includes Roaming Throne, an honorary Rogue. While this Golem is on the battlefield, triggered abilities of other creatures you control trigger a second time. That allows Generous Plunderer to give your opponent two Treasure tokens each turn, which, in turn, amounts to additional damage being dealt to your opponent when Generous Plunderer attacks.

Golgari Roots

The final deck I have for you this week pairs Black and Green mana with a Plant-creating enchantment that you can use to wreak havoc on your opponent. Let's take a look at the deck.

Insidious Roots
Insidious Roots is the enchantment that I was referring to before the deck list. It provides the ability for all of your creature tokens to tap for one mana of any color. It also provides you a way of creating 0/1 Plant creature tokens, as long as you can find a way for creatures to leave your graveyard.

To help this plan come to fruition, this deck includes a ton of ways to remove creatures from your graveyard. Ashnod's Harvester exiles a card from any graveyard when it attacks. Skyfisher Spider can gain you life when it dies, exiling itself from your graveyard in the process. Multiple creatures in this deck have the means to exile themselves from your graveyard by paying mana. There's also Honest Rutstein, who returns a creature from your graveyard to your hand when he enters play. These all allow you to create a ton of Plant creature tokens that will successfully get bigger as more and more creatures leave your graveyard.

Wrapping Up

Even though we have a couple of months until our next Standard release, there's no shortage of fun and exciting decks to try out. Be sure to come back next week to see what color of mana I'll be focusing on then.

What do you think of these decks? Feel free to share this article with your friends anywhere on social media. And be sure to join me here again next week as I continue my search for innovative decks in Standard. I'll see you then!

- Mike Likes

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