• PDH Home Base

Starter Pack: Black Cards

Swamp (Theros), by Rob Alexander, owned by Wizards of the Coast © All Rights Reserved.

Alright, everyone, it's time to get back at it. I'm looking forward to bringing in another piece to my Starter Pack series. This week, my focus will be on black cards, and what I consider to be "auto-includes" when building any black.

A series like this is certainly an IMO-driven series. However, I still feel quite confident that these pieces will all be great choices to consider, no matter what brew you're designing at home. Let's not waste time, and dig into Starter Pack: Black Cards.


Let's talk about a few excellent creatures that are always a great choice. Black is a color that utilizes life totals as a resources, so pieces like Blood Seeker and Gray Merchant of Asphodel are great considerations. Blood Seeker will slowly deprive other players of using this resource, while Gray Merchant acts as an instant combination of depleting others, and restocking your own.

Flying creatures are dangerous, so you need to be ready. Fetid Imp is a low CMC drop, with the potential for Deathtouch. This is an excellent deterrent, especially for actual commanders. Vault Skirge, with the potential of a turn 1 drop and being equipped further, will always be a worry. It's a great piece.


I had the misfortune of learning about Endless Scream the hard way. This, plus Vampire Nighthawk, equals a very salty opponent. However, despite my salt that day, I never forgot about this card. In fact, it became one of my favorites.

Pestilence returns to a reoccurring theme that I tend to hit. This format is limited on board wipes, so cards like this are gems. Many creatures (especially tokens) will easily be wiped out by this. Board wipes are an essential inclusion.


While doing some research on non-permanents for this article, I had certain cards in mind, but discovered so many more awesome tools. First of all, I had no idea Sinkhole was legal in PDH. Most land destruction falls in red, and the minimum CMC is 4. As a fan of multiplayer, I was so excited to discover Tyrant's Choice, and relive those old Conspiracy days. It has become an instant inclusion in many black decks.

Those are some less known legal cards in the format, but don't forget about the classics. Dark Ritual and Doom Blade are staples that have value at any point during a game. These are just a few examples of great cards that exist, but once again, this is intended to be a starting place.


If there's one thing I have learned from my research for this article, it's that there is so much untapped potential still floating in "Commons-limbo." There's a special beauty with this format, as there are so many more routes to explore. With that being said, it's always so helpful to have a place to start, especially when new to a format. Let this be a helpful place to start.

Will every one of these cards work in every deck? Not necessarily, but it's a great place to start. Do these cards add power to your decks? Let this be a starting point for any deck you craft, and relieve some of the challenges that come with designing your own techs.



#Primers #Black #Top10


Recent Posts

See All