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Conflux + Grixis strategy

October 2, 2008

A seven-headed hydra aptly named “Apocalypse Hydra” bursting into a Bant fleet. Hello, Conflux.

I can’t wait for the shards to collide.

The Demons of Grixis extract the life force they call, “vis”, straight out of a vital host at will. They are unnaturally strong, cruelly intelligent, and ageless. They can command a dark reverence of an impromptu army wherever they roam. Out of this hellscape of decay you will find those who worship the Demons, be it by their inferior minds or their fear of the sheer ungodly power of a Demon.

Using Demon’s Herald you sacrifice a blue creature, black creature, and red creature, for a more-than-in-your-favor trade for the Prince of Thralls. I suggest that you attack with your Sedraxis Specter and Kederekt Creeper then if they are blocked (which the Creeper most likely won’t be so wait until after damage is dealt), while damage is on the stack, tap your Demon’s Herald and sacrifice them away to summon your absolutely overpowered Prince of Thralls to the battlefield. Don’t worry, you can reuse your Demon’s Herald for later use (if you didn’t sacrifice it away to itself) of damage on the stack business and other opportune moments of sacrifice. Secondly, don’t worry about your Sedraxis Specter, you can always unearth him back onto the field.

The Executioner’s Capsule will be a staple in Grixis and Esper decks (more so Esper) to come. It’s parallels to Seal of Doom are that in a great way. They can still regenerate, but that is at a nice sacrifice for speed with an easy down payment of one black mana and the other two mana coming when you need it. 

Grixis is equipped with the most phenomenal spell in Shards of Alara, with Cruel Ultimatum. With this being successfully cast, your opponent will be sacrificing a creature (that you might gain control of if they don’t pay 3 life with your Prince of Thralls out), losing 5 life, discarding 3 cards and crying into a nearby cloth. If you thought was enough to make it an amazing card, then how about you also bring a creature from your graveyard to your hand, gain 5 life, and draw three cards. Astoundingly powerful. This alone can completely shift the tide of any game into your favor. This card is the epitome of the cycle of life and death.

Agony Warp has shut me down more than once. Giving one creature no attack and another (or the same one) no toughness for two mana, sweet destruction. Talk about ripping the “vis” right out of the weak minded, this card drains the other side of the field in nearly any situation you can throw at it. Be it you are attacking and want to shut down the defender, or want to kill a mediocre sized monster and cancel the strength of another. Agony Warp will take care of them in the best way to spend one blue and one black mana since Glimpse the Unthinkable

Blighting will cripple you time after time. Taking 3 damage and discarding two cards is never on anyone’s agenda. This card is really held back by it’s “sorcery” classification, but I still think it manages to be an effective spell. It mixes what black and red both do perfectly into one card with a very manageable casting cost. 

Overall, Grixis brings a nice circle of pseudo-control through destruction and resurrection. Used effectively, this shard’s meanest spells and creatures come with some serious issues for your opponent to deal with, but you need some circumstances set up first. Demon’s Herald can only really be used efficiently when sacrificing Sedraxis Specters that will soon be unearthed for a measly two mana a piece. Prince of Thralls’ casting cast is almost insane to actually cast without the Herald’s assistance. The other spells are fantastic, Agony Warp, Blighting, Executioner’s Capsule and the forever amazing, Cruel Ultimatum.

What direction do you think this shard should be used in to make it most effective?

Bon Voyage,


One Comment leave one →
  1. October 3, 2008 1:45 am

    That Apocalypse Hydra looks awesome. Where did you get that picture?

    By the way, I think discard is the way to go with Grixis. For Standard, you can add 4 Thoughtseize to go with the Blightnings. That way you can get the removal (like Condemn) or bounce (like Cryptic Command) out of their hand.

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