Okay, last week of waiting for this interview thing. I promise, life has a funny way of taking your planned schedule and throwing a wrench in your well laid plans.
Let’s pretend for a moment that xbox achievements applied to life as well as the games we play. I’d have my fair share of unique ones that I won’t go into detail on, as well as a lot of more common achievements. You know like, “A legend in his own mind is born” ~ Julian Biondillo was born, “School’s out Forever” ~ Graduate High school. These are all fine and dandy but for most people not really achievements worth mention. It’s like the “congratulations, you completed the tutorial” achievement.
In the Magic world my achievements would be perhaps not legendary, but proud moments in my Magic-playing life. This article is about the deck that awarded me at least three, if not more “Magic achievements.”
1. “I Got 99 problems, but my Commander ain’t one” ~ Built Your Very First EDH Deck
2. “I Got the Bling and the Bling” ~ Completely Foil a Deck
3. “So Much Shiny” ~ Completely Foil an EDH Deck
So here it is, my EDH pride and joy:
Karador, Ghost Chieftain EDH by Julian Biondillo
As one can imagine this was not only a prolonged project that spanned years, picking up a foil or two here and there but, as most EDH decks go, there were many revisions.
This deck is a representation of, by far, my favorite color combination in the game (See my Junk Tiny Leaders deck led by Doran, the Siege Tower here). Being a die-hard Junk, or I suppose nowadays Abzan, player I was instantly thinking of these colors when the concept of EDH was first brought to me. Although in the early days of Commander being a printed set, I had a foil proxy made of Karador, Ghost Chieftain. Luckily for me, being the purist I am, the judge promo came out and I could have a legitimate foil general.
I like board wipes, can you tell? If thinks start to get hairy I want to start over. But not a total board wipe, we’re at least keeping lands. (Side note: if anyone plays mass land destruction in my EDH circle they’re either not invited back or their deck is forced to be change to remove cards with such effects. Hence why more harsh wipes like Armageddon won’t appear in this list or any others.)
This list is actually down on the number of sweepers I played in some of my initial lists. I used to run Novablast Wurm, Martial Coup, False Prophet, Death Cloud (removed per the ban on mass land destruction) and also Rout. I’ve been on the receiving end of all of that hate before, and yes, it can be annoying so we cut it down.
Green’s biggest role in the deck, since the banning of Primeval Titan and Sylvan Primordial, is mostly utility and a little ramp. Our only “fat” green creature left in the list is Thragtusk. Sure, we have a couple multi-colored creatures with green in their cost but not as many as one might think.
We do, on the other hand, love our angels, demons, and legendary creatures in black and white. Siege Rhino is probably the best new addition to the list as he does drain the table but alas, only heals me for three regardless. Akroma, Angel of Wrath and Blood Baron of Vizkopa are fairly hard to kill so of course we play them. Iona, Shield of Emeria is probably the most mean and unfair creature one can play in a casual format especially when most decks are multi-colored and shutting off one color can shut off entire decks.
One of my Top 20 creatures of all time was initially not permitted to be played in EDH but luckly for me, Kokusho, the Evening Star was unbanned as a creature, while to my most recent knowledge it’s still banned as a general. Which is fine, we want him to go to the graveyard, a lot.
With all the board wipe in here we need specific, localized spot removal as well. Cards such as Swords to Plowshares, Path to Exile, Vindicate, and Maelstrom Pulse are some of the best spells we can play in our colors here. Also don’t underestimate the power of using Sun Titan to regrow your Pernicious Deed every turn.
Our lands are fairly self explanatory. Vault of the Archangel is busted and makes you win every creature battle, Miren, the Moaning Well gives us a sacrifice option to get around removal that exiles our guys. Tectonic Edge deals with troublesome lands our opponents play and can be regrown by Sun Titan.
This deck has been a huge project for me over the years and unfortunately I don’t get to play EDH as much as I’d like to these days. Suffer no delusions though, next time I sit down for some EDH brawling Karador, Ghost Chieftain will be making an appearance at least once!
Thanks for checking out my article!
x Julian Biondillo x
Julian, AKA hardcoreniceguy on Twitter