i all, and welcome back to the first post-Scars of Mirrodin Prerelease edition of From the Lab. Every time a new large set is released, I like to complete a traditional puzzle called House of Commons. Created by Chris Millar, House of Commons is essentially a deck-building exercise that uses every common from the latest large set (in this case, Scars of Mirrodin.)
Here's a quick rundown of the guidelines. I had to use four copies of every common to build a lot of decks. So, for example, I couldn't put four copies of Galvanic Blast in all my red decks, and I'd have to use four copies of Whitesun's Passage at some point. The resulting array of decks (eleven, in this case) is spread out across all five colors in a (hopefully) balanced fashion.
Whenever I attempt this puzzle, I always accidentally save some of the best commons for last, making that deck pretty unfair. So I split them up again, leading to some strange results. The four copies of Instill Infection (which, by the way, I witnessed being cast on a Precursor Golem at the Prerelease) became four singletons in four different black decks, which I thought was weird. Melt Terrain and Blunt the Assault were other odd placements.
I also am interested in what color combinations I end up with. Green white, black green, and black blue led the pack with two decks each. Most of the rest contained red, which was strangely difficult to split up. Oh well. Let's see what I came up with!
Today's first deck is a mostly red weenie deck, with a slight green splash. Oxidda Daredevil and Vulshok Heartstoker bring the heat early on, while Flameborn Hellion cleans up in the late game. There's lots of equipment for Goblin Gaveleer, as well as some combat tricks like Assault Strobe, Shatter, and Tel-Jilad Defiance.
This next deck is a green and white look at the metalcraft ability. Cheap artifacts, like the Replicas and Accorder's Shield, should pump up Carapace Forger, Auriok Sunchaser, and Ghalma's Warden for some solid beats. Arrest acts as general creature shutdown.
Next, we have the most infect-oriented deck of the day, containing most of the beatdown poison creatures. Corpse Cur is key as an infected Gravedigger, and Withstand Death serves as excellent creature defense.
Now we get to the first of two blue-black artifact-based decks. They're both controlling, but this first one hopes to pester your opponent (with blue tricks such as Disperse and Turn Aside.) Either Chrome Steed or Bleak Coven Vampires finish, or your Plague Stingers and Relic Putrescence slowly infect.
The second blue-black deck today features the only common in Scars with proliferate: Steady Progress. Of course, I included all the charge counter commons as well. Tumble Magnet and Necrogen Censer can get a little crazy with a lot of proliferation. Golem Foundry, meanwhile, will hopefully be churning out Golem tokens. Stoic Rebuttal and Lumengrid Drake can hinder your opponent along the way. And if possible, victory could come from the little Vector Asp that could.
Okay, no more infect after this deck, I promise! I had two leftover Tainted Strikes, and I naturally decided to cast them on the fattest commons available to win in one shot. A combination of a Tainted Strike and an Untamed Might on, say, an Alpha Tyrannax would do it. Of course, your fatties can win the game without infect as well. Some cheap black creatures and one of the better removal spells in this format (Grasp of Darkness) rounds this deck out.
This deck is back-to-basics aggro, with some artifact-y tricks as well. Glint Hawk and its Idol could rack up some quick flying damage, with Kemba's Skyguard and Blade-Tribe Berserkers waiting in the wings. The red and white Spellbombs offer some flexibility, and Galvanic Blast is some fine removal.
This white-blue deck plays defensively and looks to win with evasive creatures and/or Screeching Silcaw. Flight Spellbomb and Neurok Invisimancer can help Soliton avoid blockers, and with pseudo-vigilance, it's the best candidate for an Echo Circlet as well. Sky-Eel School and Fulgent Distraction play major roles of offense and also defense.
This deck partners Perilous Myr with red sacrificers such as Ferrovore and Kuldotha Rebirth. Nihil Spellbomb and Bladed Pinions can fuel those two while helping out Blade-Tribe Berserkers and Bleak Coven Vampires. Black weenies and Melt Terrain round out the deck.
This deck is probably the strangest of them all. It was cobbled together late in the process and features random green creatures and random white combat tricks. I guess you try to find Razorfield Thresher or beat down with your makeshift team. To balance a strange creature force, I turned to some powerful removal in Revoke Existence.
Today's final deck is a blue and red controllish thing. Stall with Plated Seastrider and Vulshok Replica until you build up to Scrapdiver Serpent, Scoria Elemental, or Saberclaw Golem. Vault them Skyward and outrace your opponent with help from two spectacular bits of removal, Turn to Slag and Bonds of Quicksilver.
Hope you enjoyed this traditional look at the commons of Scars of Mirrodin!
Here is a quick reminder that today is the last day to submit decks for the Build Around Contest, so make sure to get them in if you want me to see your deck. Click the link to the rules of the contest if you're confused on how to begin.
See you next week as we dive full throttle into the exciting new world of Mirrodin.