$50 Budget Colossal Dreadmaw Tribal - BathroomBrews
Colossal Dreadmaw | Illustrated by Jesper Ejsing
Wild Pair | Illustrated by Lars Grant-West
Hello, everyone! Welcome to BathroomBrews, the budget deck tech series proving Magic isn't pay-to-win. Each deck will have a budget of $50 excluding the cost of the commander.
Okay, listen up! What's everyone's favorite common creature? Grizzly Bears? Boring. Storm Crow? Come on, be original. The best common creature in all of Magic: the Gathering is clearly Colossal Dreadmaw. It's everything Griselbrand wished he could be. A six-mana 6/6 with trample; all things equal, as they should be.
How does one build a deck dedicated to this majestic creature? Dinosaur tribal is the easy way, but that doesn't show the beauty of this creature. Instead I decided to only use six-mana 6/6 creatures. There are so many creatures trying to copy what Dreadmaw does, so the best we can do is give them some love since imitation is the highest form of flattery
Selecting a commander for the deck was a no-brainer. In order to maximize the potential creatures, I had to go with a five-color commander, and who better than, O-Kagachi, Vengeful Kami? The stats and mana value line up perfectly, and it has trample, just like Dreadmaw. Plus, its ability will help deter people from attacking us while we ramp into big threat after big threat. It might have been cheaper to include fewer than five color, but even on a $50 budget you can build a solid mana base.
Oh, and one more restriction I gave myself when building: I only included cards with mana values that were factors of six; in other words, I only included cards that cost one, two, three, or six mana in my list. I know it would probably be improved by four- and five-mana-value cards; however, I wanted to be strict with the theme.
You can find links to the $50 budget list, and my personal non-budget list down below. Without further ado, let's get into it!
Did you know that there are several cycles of rare or mythic cards that share similar characteristics? One such cycle is comprised of creatures that cost six mana and 6/6s. This cycle includes notable cards like Sun Titan, Frost Titan, Inferno Titan, Grave Titan, and Primeval Titan. Unfortunately, the last two cards, Grave Titan and Primeval Titan, didn't make it into my deck. Grave Titan was a bit too expensive, given our budget, and Primeval Titan is banned from play. However, I mustn't forget to mention the newly printed Blight Titan, which I included in my deck. The remaining cards in the cycle are still exceptional, and they bring a remarkable amount of utility to the deck.
Speaking of utility, let's explore the Soul cycle from Core Set 2015. This impressive cycle consists of cards like Soul of Theros, Soul of Ravnica, Soul of Innistrad, Soul of Shandalar, Soul of Zendikar, and Soul of New Phyrexia. While Soul of Ravnica and Soul of Innistrad may not be the most efficient, they do help us maintain a steady supply of resources for our hand. On the other hand, Soul of New Phyrexia plays a vital role by safeguarding our entire board against a wide range of threats.
The final cycle I included are the three-color planar Dragons. I actually don't know the official name of the cycle, but it includes Rith, the Awakener, Intet, the Dreamer, Oros, the Avenger, Teneb, the Harvester, and Vorosh, the Hunter. There a few more you could include, but I found these have the most impact in games. The others tend to be either less impactful or draw too much hate.
Aside from cycles of creatures, there are a plethora of generically powerful creatures that you can include in your list to help with card draw, ramp, or reanimation. For card draw or pseudo card draw, I've included, Mutalith Vortex Beast, Amareth, the Lustrous, Combustible Gearhulk, Soul of the Harvest, Elenda and Azor, and Demonlord Belzenlok. Be careful with Belzenlok: I've almost knocked myself out of games with his ETB on more than one occasion.
One of the downsides of having only six-mana creatures in a deck is it can be difficult to double spell early in the game. Thankfully, there are quite a few ways for us to cheat creatures into play using other creatures. We have Gyruda, Doom of Depths, since all of our creatures are even mana value, the new Kroxa and Kunoros, for reanimation, and Kodama of the East Tree, to let us drop additional creatures or ramp. Kodama also combos with one of the key cards in the deck, which I'll be going over shortly. One quick rules note for Gyruda: even if the mill cards are exiled, you can still reanimate one of them since she doesn't check the graveyard, just the cards milled.
The last creatures I want to mention are the ones that have over-performed time and time again. Given the density of Dragons in my list, Miirym, Sentinel Wyrm has been an all-star every game it hits the table. Same goes for Tivit, Seller of Secrets with both its ETB and combat damage trigger you get to ramp or draw cards, and Hexmark Destroyer is just an absolute flavor win that can take out large swaths of creatures in one shot.
Sneaking Out Dreadmaws
Like I said earlier, the biggest issue with a high curve deck is the lack of ability to double spell early on. Both Sunbird's Invocation and Wild Pair help us immensely with that problem. The biggest downside, of course, is you need to be casting the spells from your hand to get the triggers, so Kodama or Gyruda won't trigger these, so I have a general list of Wild Pair targets I prioritize.
- Colossal Dreadmaw: While this is most certainly incorrect, I can't in good conscience leave the real commander in the deck.
- Kodama of the East Tree: Because of Kodama's wording, if you have both it and Wild Pair out, you will get two Kodama triggers, giving you potentially four creatures in one turn.
- Demonlord Belzenlok: Great way to refill the hand, despite the risk.
The rest of the creatures will depend on the situation. Sometimes you'll need removal, so you grab Inferno Titan or Vaevictis Asmadi, the Dire. If you need to burn out the last little bit of damage, grab Ziatora, the Incinerator, which pairs great with Scuttling Doom Engine to deal 12 damage to a player.
I'm not going to bore you with all of my ramp, removal, and board wipe choices since they are pretty standard for a five-color deck. I leaned more into enchantment ramp than land or artifact ramp, given the tighter budget. Instead, let's talk about how to actually win with this deck. Most of the wins from this deck have been turning big creature sideways until everyone is knocked out. As I mentioned above, Ziatora, the Incinerator and Scuttling Doom Engine are great ways to get those last points of damage, but Warstorm Surge has earned its keep more often than not.
I don't usually do an upgrade section for a deck. I find them to be pointless more often than not since you can just use https://edhrec.com/ to find the best staples at any given price. However I'm making an exception here. I actually own a non-budget version of this deck, and I've used that as my starting point for this deck. Aside from better generically good staples, if you have a little extra room in your budget, I'd pick up Muldrotha, the Gravetide, Wurmcoil Engine, Moraug, Fury of Akoum, Selvala's Stampede, and Lurking Predators. All of these cards have overperformed in the games they've hit the table and would be the first upgrades I'd pick up.
The Deck List
$50 Colossal Dreadmaw Tribal - BRBMTGView on Archidekt
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This has been Ben, from BathroomBrewsMTG, and remember, always wash your hands.