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Author Topic: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!  (Read 237 times)

jalabi

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[EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« on: October 21, 2019, 05:12:26 pm »
Greven, Predator Captain

So, this is a fun deck I'm trying to build around Greven, Predator Captain.

This is a voltron deck that wants to kill with commander damage and and seems to fun in concept.

The idea is the ramp to get Greven out as soon as possible, get rid of pesky blockers with removals and hit him hard with some recoil of course.

Let me know how you would modify the deck, what would you add and take away with certain restriction:

Lands: Obvious improvement with Rakdos mana staples and will get there soon enough.
Mana rocks: Sol ring, Mana crypt and such advantageous rocks are banned in my play group. Thank you @Morganator 2.0 for pointed this out.
Make them cards that are worth $5.00 or less as it is supposed to be a budget fun deck.

So far these are the edits:
- 1 Mountain and + 1 Command tower
- 1 Without weakness + 1 Whispersilk cloak (Unlikely aid has more flavor as it has Rakdos in it!)
- 1 Soul's fire + 1 Darksteel plate
- 1 Immolating Souleater + Maddening Imp (Thank you @Judaspriester)
- 1 Impetuous Devils + Flametongue Kavu
- 1 Go for the throat + 1 bedevil
- 1 Ruinous Minotaur + Curse of Fool's Wisdom (Thank you @CleanBelwas for the suggestion)
« Last Edit: October 21, 2019, 09:30:12 pm by jalabi »

Morganator 2.0

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2019, 05:30:44 pm »
If mana rocks are banned in your playgroup, doesn't that mean that 7 out of the 8 cards in your mana ramp section can't be used?

Judaspriester

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2019, 05:31:33 pm »
First of all, I like the land base. This is one of the rare budget decks I check where I don't have to write my mantra. :)
If you want to improve the mana base a little, Tainted Mountain, Fellwar Stone, Sol Ring and Exotic Orchard would be possible upgrades.

Ashes to Ashes could be replaced with Curtains' Call, but I'll think you want to get the damage in oder to push Greven. Another target removal I like in black is Tragic Slip. Trigger morbid shouldn't be a that big deal, especially since it doesn't need to be your creature dying.

For the commander sections: I'll prefere auras and equipments in stead of instants, but that's a question of playstyle and your playgroup.

If you want to make use of Greven's second ability, some creatures with their own recursion effect like Reassembling Skeleton could be useful. It may be worth it taking a look around in this direction.

In case you want to be nasty, Maddening Imp could be interesting. The rule text is quiet complicated but gets reduced to this: "{t}: at the end of current  turn, destroy all creatures this player controls, that haven't attacked". The interesting part here is, that the card doesn't exclude creatures that have summoning sickness. The card is situational, but can be very nasty if used right. Especially against high cmc commanders without haste.

/edit: I haven't noticed the "No manarock" part  ::)
but maybe the special ban list here just includes the common staples like Sol Ring etc.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2019, 05:43:20 pm by Judaspriester »
You say Prison Cell, I hear 'Holiday'.

jalabi

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2019, 05:57:25 pm »
If mana rocks are banned in your playgroup, doesn't that mean that 7 out of the 8 cards in your mana ramp section can't be used?

Thank you for noticing it. It is mana rock staples like sol ring, mana crypt, etc.

jalabi

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2019, 06:07:58 pm »
First of all, I like the land base. This is one of the rare budget decks I check where I don't have to write my mantra. :)
If you want to improve the mana base a little, Tainted Mountain, Fellwar Stone, Sol Ring and Exotic Orchard would be possible upgrades.

Ashes to Ashes could be replaced with Curtains' Call, but I'll think you want to get the damage in oder to push Greven. Another target removal I like in black is Tragic Slip. Trigger morbid shouldn't be a that big deal, especially since it doesn't need to be your creature dying.

For the commander sections: I'll prefere auras and equipments in stead of instants, but that's a question of playstyle and your playgroup.

If you want to make use of Greven's second ability, some creatures with their own recursion effect like Reassembling Skeleton could be useful. It may be worth it taking a look around in this direction.

In case you want to be nasty, Maddening Imp could be interesting. The rule text is quiet complicated but gets reduced to this: "{t}: at the end of current  turn, destroy all creatures this player controls, that haven't attacked". The interesting part here is, that the card doesn't exclude creatures that have summoning sickness. The card is situational, but can be very nasty if used right. Especially against high cmc commanders without haste.

/edit: I haven't noticed the "No manarock" part  ::)
but maybe the special ban list here just includes the common staples like Sol Ring etc.

I love that Imp! He sure is a nasty little pest!  :o :o :o I'm in love! Will take a couple of weeks for me to get him, but will do!

I like the reusable creatures, had a couple in mind like Bloodhast, Flamewake Phoenix, Shambling Remains, Bloodsoaked Champion. Having more of these will help with the Captain's appetite.

What auras and equipment would you recommend to protect Greven?

CleanBelwas

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2019, 06:32:41 pm »
Hey man, cool deck. I run a Greven deck myself and card I love in it is Curse of Fool's Wisdom.

It combos amazingly with Greven. Curse yourself with it and it gets nuts pretty fast.

So let's say for example you sac Yargle, Glutton of Urborg to Greven's attack trigger. You lose 3 for Yargle's toughness, but you also draw 9, which loses you 18 and gains you 18, so you've lost 21 and Greven now hits for (at least) 26, while your life total has only changed by 3.

If this is a card that interests you, then Bitterheart Witch is a perfect accompaniment. Her death trigger will let you find the curse and attach it to yourself for free, and luckily you just so happen to have a commander who will let you get her nice and dead.

Also, an amazing card that offers the desired protection for Greven but also plays into strats of the deck is Whispersilk Cloak. Unblockable is pretty nice, but the shroud can be a problem for the combat tricks like Temur Battle Rage / Rush of Vitality so it's effectiveness really depends on whether or not you want to pump him more with tricks or by sacrificing creatures. I mean, it's good either way but certainly better with one of those strats than the other. Food for thought at least, I hope.

Greven is super fun though man and your version of it looks sweet, so whatever you decide, I hope you have as much fun with it as I do.
Building a deck are you? Have you considered Ashnod's Altar?

jalabi

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2019, 10:37:04 pm »
Nice! Greven is a mean little angry puppet!

Do you have your deck posted somewhere? I would love to see it!

Thank you for the mentioning Curse of Fool's Wisdom. I'm going to run it in the deck as it will pump Greven every turn for at least 2.

I'm not certain about Bitterheart Witch as it will increase my cmc and is useless if I get the curse in my hand or graveyard. But will give it a shot!

I added the Whispersilk Cloak and removed an instant that gives indestructible. I can't argue that the cloak stays in the battlefield and most decks have more creature hate than artifact hate in their decks.

Marshstepper78

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2019, 10:57:08 pm »
Unless you have a dedicated Curse deck, I'd avoid using Bitterheart Witch personally.

It's far from a budget build, but feel free to check out my Greven deck for ideas.

Judaspriester

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #8 on: October 22, 2019, 02:12:58 am »
For the equipments, I would reccomend some evergreens:
Basilisk Collar
Sword of Vengeance
Trailblazer's Boots (makes Greven unblockable in most cases)
Inquisitor's Flail (if handled carefully, this item can cause havoc, especially if combined with double strike)
Blackblade Reforged

Then, Tenza, Godo's Maul might also be interesting (+3/+3 and trample in total).

I'm kinda sure there is more interesting stuff, but I would have to do some research for it. Bestial Fury was comming in mind, but since graven has already menace, I'm not sure about this card.
You say Prison Cell, I hear 'Holiday'.

MustaKotka

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2019, 08:45:25 am »
Perhaps I'm missing something but I feel like Squee, Goblin Nabob and Squee, the Immortal would be good cards for their recursive abilities. Especially the latter since it's basically "pay (1)(R)(R): draw two cards".

CleanBelwas

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #10 on: October 22, 2019, 10:10:15 am »
I can see why Bitterheart witch is less appealing. Truth is I only include it in my list because I have one to include and I find the cmc of the curse a little steep without a discard outlet for triggering the madness. My Greven deck is one of my lower power decks that I have so far just built out of things I currently own so this will no doubt be one of the cards I cut when I give it the attention it needs. I'm yet to have the scenario where I already have the curse and draw into the witch so I'm currently operating under a positive bias with it, even though I know it's shortcomings.

You can see my list here:

https://deckstats.net/decks/132604/1400336-kicking-ass-and-taking-names/en

Like I say, it's pretty low on the power level but you might get some ideas from it. I've actually made a few changes from this iteration which I'll try and get updated today. I've made it a little more focused on stealing other peoples creatures to sac to Greven. Things like Act of Treason, Hijack, Captivating Crew, that kind of thing. It's pretty fun playing it that way. Get rid of blockers while still getting the card draw and pump.

A few cards in my list that I'll highlight as surprise hits for me are:

Hazoret's Favor. It basically gives you two extra cards every time you sac a creature and the downside is negated by the fact they're going to die anyway.

Crater Elemental and Erratic Cyclops. With this deck wanting to punch face, it's worth running a few things to avoid the crackback that can inevitably come from a lot of attacking. These guys have a lot of toughness so can block a lot of things comfortably. This huge toughness also obviously comes in handy when it's time to finish someone off. Sacrificing them to Greven buffs him a lot, so can help make short work of opponents. These two in particular also have ways to pump their power so you can also get the card draw from them when you sac them.

Phyrexian Delver. I'm killing my creatures a lot, so this guy lets me bring them back, while also making me lose life and pumping Greven in the process.

Honestly, your Greven deck looks better than mine. There are a lot of cards I could take from other decks to make it better, but for now I like it as a more casual, lower power deck. As a result, I'm not sure any of this would be worth swapping out for what you already have, but I thought I'd share my own experiences with Greven with you just in case it helps or gives you some ideas.
Building a deck are you? Have you considered Ashnod's Altar?

jalabi

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #11 on: October 22, 2019, 04:42:47 pm »
Perhaps I'm missing something but I feel like Squee, Goblin Nabob and Squee, the Immortal would be good cards for their recursive abilities. Especially the latter since it's basically "pay (1)(R)(R): draw two cards".

Squee, the Inmortal! Yes.... he is a constant sacrifice dork in this deck that I can use! yup he is a 1RR: Draw two cards, lose 1 life and +1+0 to greven!  :o

Thank you for your recommendation, what would you feel comfortable taking out?

jalabi

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #12 on: October 22, 2019, 04:54:12 pm »
I can see why Bitterheart witch is less appealing. Truth is I only include it in my list because I have one to include and I find the cmc of the curse a little steep without a discard outlet for triggering the madness. My Greven deck is one of my lower power decks that I have so far just built out of things I currently own so this will no doubt be one of the cards I cut when I give it the attention it needs. I'm yet to have the scenario where I already have the curse and draw into the witch so I'm currently operating under a positive bias with it, even though I know it's shortcomings.

Like I say, it's pretty low on the power level but you might get some ideas from it. I've actually made a few changes from this iteration which I'll try and get updated today. I've made it a little more focused on stealing other peoples creatures to sac to Greven. Things like Act of Treason, Hijack, Captivating Crew, that kind of thing. It's pretty fun playing it that way. Get rid of blockers while still getting the card draw and pump.

A few cards in my list that I'll highlight as surprise hits for me are:

Hazoret's Favor. It basically gives you two extra cards every time you sac a creature and the downside is negated by the fact they're going to die anyway.

Crater Elemental and Erratic Cyclops. With this deck wanting to punch face, it's worth running a few things to avoid the crackback that can inevitably come from a lot of attacking. These guys have a lot of toughness so can block a lot of things comfortably. This huge toughness also obviously comes in handy when it's time to finish someone off. Sacrificing them to Greven buffs him a lot, so can help make short work of opponents. These two in particular also have ways to pump their power so you can also get the card draw from them when you sac them.

Phyrexian Delver. I'm killing my creatures a lot, so this guy lets me bring them back, while also making me lose life and pumping Greven in the process.

Honestly, your Greven deck looks better than mine. There are a lot of cards I could take from other decks to make it better, but for now I like it as a more casual, lower power deck. As a result, I'm not sure any of this would be worth swapping out for what you already have, but I thought I'd share my own experiences with Greven with you just in case it helps or gives you some ideas.

Thank you so much for taking your time and responding to my questions. You have been of great help and I still need to try this out in my game group. It really looks like tons of fun to use your creatures, life and mana as resources.

OMG, I forgot about Phyrexian Delver, it's a nasty little lizard that supports this deck amazingly. Hazoret Favor, didn't know this existed and will help my sack even lower power creatures like Squee, Bloodsoaked Champion, bloodghast, etc.

Mischievous Poltergeist is something I need to find a way to add into the deck. It gives a blocker to flying creatures that will only hit 1, unless the creature has trample, and also can pump Greven for a surprise kill.

This is what I love about MTG... You have so many options that two decks with the same commander may differ a bit in how things get done!

CleanBelwas

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #13 on: October 22, 2019, 05:28:53 pm »
Thank you so much for taking your time and responding to my questions. You have been of great help and I still need to try this out in my game group. It really looks like tons of fun to use your creatures, life and mana as resources.

No problem man! Glad I could help in some way.

Mischievous Poltergeist is something I need to find a way to add into the deck. It gives a blocker to flying creatures that will only hit 1, unless the creature has trample, and also can pump Greven for a surprise kill.

Yea this is a great choice. Anything that lets you pay life at instant speed has immense possibility in Greven (like Wall of Blood), but a flying blocker that can regenerate is even better.

This is what I love about MTG... You have so many options that two decks with the same commander may differ a bit in how things get done!

Yea me too man. And this is just for someone like Greven who wants you to build him fairly linear. There's some amazing variety out there for some commanders.
Building a deck are you? Have you considered Ashnod's Altar?

MustaKotka

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Re: [EDH / Commander] Greven, Predator Captain - Need Help!
« Reply #14 on: October 22, 2019, 05:38:41 pm »
Thank you for your recommendation, what would you feel comfortable taking out?
Butcher's Glee. I know it's not in the same category as Squee, but I think it's a weak card. Regeneration is a weak mechanic because it removes the creature from combat. It will work ok in situations where your general is to be blocked by a bigger blocker but any other form of creature removal and you'll lose out on precious commander damage.