Login | Register


All times are UTC - 7 hours


It is currently 2019-Dec-15 4:22 am




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 54 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3, 4  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-29 4:23 am 

Joined: 2017-Jun-13 4:56 am
Age: Drake
So I was listening to the Command Zone podcast and they went on an aside about how white doesn't have any good commanders and is really hurting for any good cards and how there hasn't been a good monowhite commander in five years.

Obviously my head exploded and I became an irrational rage baby, I am a Commander Player with OPINIONS(tm) after all. I hit gatherer immediately to look for contradictions. God-Eternal Oketra, Sram, Senior Edificer, and Sephara, Sky's Blade are all right there suggesting strongly themed and unique decks.

Then I got a grip on my babi rag and considered their point. It lead me to two larger questions.

1) Why do people play mono-color decks?

I only play monocolor decks because there is a legendary creature I really want as commander. Etali, Primal Storm is currently my only monocolor deck. The original Elder Dragon Highlander format used three color pairings with color identity to keep them distinct. Magic's philosophy explicitly leads players to combine colors for more power and range.

2) Why do people WANT to play MONOWHITE?

So the reason to play Monowhite can't be "because there is a cool monowhite legendary I want as commander". IF that were the case Jimmy and Josh wouldn't be wishing for a cool monowhite commander. The appeal has to be in the color identity itself, but what white thing do people want to do in monowhite?

Anybody got opinions?

_________________
I'm like the Emily Litella of forums
Respect ought be given, though 'tis scarcely earned


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-29 5:13 am 

Joined: 2015-Jan-14 2:58 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
As to why people play monocolor, for myself it is usually a commander I like - I just finished up a Syr Konrad deck, and have Brimaz and mono-G Selvala in the stable. Monocolor decks also tend to be less expensive, because the manabase is cheaper.

As to what people want to play, I think that current monowhite commanders and cardpool support White Weenie, Equipment, and Angel tribal pretty well. White is also a primary color for a number of resource denial strategies that are generally considered unfun. Stax, Hatebears, and land destruction could all live in monoW if they were more broadly acceptable.

Josh and Jimmy have a pretty high powered casual meta, and monowhite is bad at draw, bad at ramp, and uses the largely proactive board control measures discussed above, which the social contract often limits the use of. It is good at Exile removal and mass removal - particularly for creatures. Unfortunately, creature removal is arguably less important the more competitive your playgroup is.

_________________
Deepglow Skate
Antis wrote:
I'm seriously suspicious of any card that makes Doubling Season look fair and reasonable.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-29 5:25 am 

Joined: 2011-Feb-07 3:37 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Evilkritter wrote:
I only play monocolor decks because there is a legendary creature I really want as commander.


I think that's true for most people. To extend that thought a little bit more, a lot of the most popular generals aren't just powerful, they also have a unique, cool, ability attached to them.

It's generally easier to build a unique effect on to a multicolor creature, but most single color options do have a spread of different options to play with. For example, you could have a table with Krenko, Feldon, Etali, and Daretti, Scrap Servant, and none of the decks are going to look much alike.

Evilkritter wrote:
2) Why do people WANT to play MONOWHITE?


So the command zone guys are right; mono-white is one of the least popular color options (this shows up pretty consistently in Commander surveys, and in info from sites like EDHRec).

And I'd say this is partly because monowhite doesn't have that many cool or unique abilities that are relevant in multiplayer. The options are pretty narrowly limited to artifact aggro or "I've got a lot of Wraths." Both these builds are pretty static and linear, so they get boring pretty quickly.

Same with some of the old Stax/LD cards; they're kinda boring, and honestly at this point going all-in on a Stax build isn't really effective at tables that might be ok with those cards.

_________________
The deck-o-pedia


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-29 6:32 am 
User avatar

Joined: 2009-Aug-20 7:49 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: New Hampshire
Evilkritter wrote:
1) Why do people play mono-color decks?

Unless you're playing in a very high-power meta and don't actually care what your general is, instead just picking it for the colors, the obvious answer is "because there is a mono-color general that appealed to them".

Evilkritter wrote:
Magic's philosophy explicitly leads players to combine colors for more power and range.

It also leads players to NOT combine colors for more speed, efficiency and consistency. There are tradeoffs. And as someone mentioned, the manabase also tends to be much cheaper from a financial perspective.

Evilkritter wrote:
So the reason to play Monowhite can't be "because there is a cool monowhite legendary I want as commander". IF that were the case Jimmy and Josh wouldn't be wishing for a cool monowhite commander.

Um.... actually it can. Jimmy and Josh aren't the only people on earth, and what counts as cool to them isn't the final word on what is or is not cool. I agree that there aren't a lot of interesting choices in mono-white TO ME, because the most powerful options I consider to be incredibly obnoxious (looking at you, Avacyn), but if someone does build that deck, it is because they think it's a cool mono-white legendary they want as a commander.

TL;DR - If you're building your deck solely for power and color choice, then sure, mono-white is bad and who would do that? But if you're not building for cEDH, then this question is irrelevant.

_________________
"The President's job - and if someone sufficiently vain and stupid is picked he won't realize this - is not to wield power, but to draw attention away from it." -- Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide tot he Galaxy Radio Transcripts predicting the future.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-29 8:48 am 

Joined: 2011-Feb-15 7:09 am
Age: Drake
I suspect an implicit "you shouldn't be playing mono colour in edh" in that title/op.

In any case I have two mono colour decks at present. The white was my entry into commander, I thought Kemba was a cool catmander, it has hung around for many years, and still includes thematic cards like thunder(cat) totem. I'm pretty sure it's getting dismantled to be a boros deck one day soon (and yes, I am fully aware boros is the weakest colour pair, and I don't care).

My red is Krenko, because Goblins! I argue this is exactly the battlecruiser deck edh was designed for, it can kill the table with massive amounts of damage very quickly but has zero armour plating and lives or dies by the sword.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-29 12:53 pm 
User avatar

Joined: 2010-Dec-10 12:16 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
1) In addition to the reasons already stated (fiscal reasons, General Choice):
- To complete the 32 deck challenge
- Tribal/Theme based

2) An extrapolation of any of the mono-reasons above:
- many tribes are predominately mono-colored, or multi-color general choices are sub-par or not what the player wants to build
-- Angels lends to a mono-while build, even if it has multi-color options
-- Some tribes, like Cats and Knights only recently got decent Legends for 2+ color decks
-- Some tribes have no other options E.g. If you want a "Rebel Tribal" or "Griffin Tribal" your only options for a general are Mono-White (or off tribe/shapeshifter)
- building a theme like "Enduring ideal" might point to a mono-deck
- You want to build a deck for <specific legend> - and that legend is mono-white

I will admit that the majority of Mono-white decks I have seen are griefer/stax type stuff (with Rune-Tail and Eight-and-a-half-Tails being the majority by a large margin).

_________________
V/R

HK

Hazezon Tamar - Manland theme
Seshiro the Anointed - Snake Tribal
Jedit Ojanen of Efrava - Cat and Warrior Dual Tribal
Doran, the Seige Tower - Wall Tribal
Progenitus - Hydra themed Proliferate Deck
Karona, the False God - Backstabbing Hug


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-29 3:16 pm 
User avatar

Joined: 2008-Feb-29 5:57 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Duvall, WA
i play MOSTLY mono colored decks. i have a really hard time getting dow to onli 99 cards in my decks, so eliminating other colors helps a lot with that. I also have a ton of older cards and love finding ways to stop up the holes in a mono color deck. White HAS card draw, you just have to look for it. inheritance and pursuit of knowledge come to mind. Mentor of the meek, i can keep going if you want.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-29 11:26 pm 
User avatar

Joined: 2010-May-09 10:39 am
Age: Elder Dragon
I only have the one dual-land (Badlands) and a bunch of shocks, but sometimes I want to play a mono-colored commander.
Thrun, the Last Troll with swords and Riding the Dilu Horse, or I once built Oyobi, Who Split the Heavens for a fun tribal theme. The latter wasn't good, but I don't expecially build EDH decks to win unless there is an event where winning is the primary concern.


As for choosing White, the tax effects, efficient generation of weenie hordes backed by Skullclamp can really put pressure on people. White also has a fantastic selection of removal tools, and Armageddon if things go that way...

_________________
Generals:
Jasmine Boreal - Flower power! Nature/Justice/Retribution themed casual fun.
Radha, Heir to Keld - All white-bordered!
Xantcha, Sleeper Agent - cEDH discard/attrition.
Pre-Modern:
A Denying Wind.
Duel Commander:
Nissa, Vastwoord Seer - Ramp ramp ramp into Ugin+Painter's Servant.
Kari Zev, Skyship Raider - Unbridled Aggro

Find me Saturdays at the Wizard's Tower - Ottawa and occasional Mondays at Westboro Legion for Duel Commander.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-30 3:03 am 

Joined: 2019-Jul-18 7:14 am
Age: Drake
Mono color in general is a good opportunity to use cards that care about having a lot of a certain basic land like Gauntlet of Power or Emeria.

White has a strong connection to artifacts, specifically equipment. The deck can play into that where the artifacts are more the stars with white protecting them.

White is good at tokens and anthems. Had the new Harmonious Archon been legendary, I probably would have built that deck.

White gains life. Darien does cool tricks as a commander.

In the end, people build and play decks that they think will be fun, and that is subjective. I have no interest in games involving net decked Zur decks. I know why some people think that is fun. It seems like the guys on the podcast might lack some creativity if they're bagging on a mono colored deck instead of using the restriction as a chance for more creativity.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-30 5:55 am 
User avatar

Joined: 2006-Dec-31 12:26 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Half (I think) of my commander decks are mono-coloured (Nemata for green, Azami for blue, (currently) God-Eternal Oketra for white.)

Shoe hit on a big reason for me: Fewer cards need to be considered in mono-colour. As I have a fairly good collection the more options I have, the more cards I pull out when building the deck (as I build them with the cards in front of me, I don't like just listing it out in a text editor somewhere) means it takes longer to get done and it also means more cards to put back away afterwards.

My multi-coloured decks have a tighter theme to help me narrow down my choices: Bolas & Beasts are the two active multicoloured ones I have right now.

Keeping the card options narrower means there's fewer cards where I think "Oh, gotta put this in my deck, 'cuz it's such a good card/value/etc." which gives me more room to put either more on-theme cards or more niche cards that I like to play with but others may not have seen (or expected.)


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-30 5:23 pm 

Joined: 2012-Oct-24 8:05 pm
Age: Drake
I have 12 EDH decks, with 2 in progress. For about 4 of them, I had some idea for the deck in mind before picking the commander, so color was potentially relevant to my decision. The rest I picked entirely for the mechanics. The 14 include one of each mono-color.

My mono-white deck is Evra, and it's pretty solid for my casual meta. The limited amount of efficient card draw is a bit problematic, but wraths are card advantage, and so is dealing opponents massive amounts of commander damage.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Sep-30 11:34 pm 
User avatar

Joined: 2011-Jan-16 5:36 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Toronto, ON
I very frequently play monocolour; I've always had a mono-black deck in my arsenal, and there's frequently other mono-colour decks in circulation as well. I currently play Bruna, the Fading Light on a very regular basis.

Reasons to play monocolour:

1. A general appeals. Usually, it's a unique effect, but not always. Among the ones I have fond memories of, Selvala, Heart of the Wilds, Toshiro Umezawa, Odric, Master Tactician, Heliod, God of the Sun and most lately, Bruna, the Fading Light and Erebos, God of the Dead. I also frequently have a monored deck, though I don't at the moment; Jaya Ballard, Task Mage and Neheb, the Eternal were both great. If it doesn't inspire you, that's okay, but it would be ridiculous to claim any particular inspiration is universal. People are different.

2. Though they often pale compared to multicolour considerations, there are some mechanical reasons to play monocolour. Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx is a big deal. Gauntlet of Power, Caged Sun, Gauntlet of Might (for red), Crypt Ghast and Nirkana Revenant (for black) are all very nice and good. For white, I do like to play Endless Horizons. Some devotion mechanics are also fairly strong (mostly just Gray Merchant of Asphodel, but Karametra's Acolyte was no slouch either). Sometimes, there are powerful effects that depend on the number of lands of a particular type you control, as well; Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle and Emeria, the Sky Ruin are common enough (and can be leveraged in multicolour even if they are easier/more effective in monocolour), but I would venture that Scourge of Fleets, Engulf the Shore and Flow of Ideas are all very passable.

Reasons to play Monowhite in particular:

1. It's a challenge. The colour lacks draw, and that means squeezing every little bit out of every resource. I think it improves your playskill to try and politic and play with limited resources through a table. It also hones your deckbuilding skills; it gives you some real insight into what kind of metrics you expect out of a card, whether it was pulling its weight, or was overcosted, etc. When you don't get to draw as much, every draw counts.

2. You're seen as the underdog. There is a political aspect to playing a deck that looks and feels overtly weak. For the first dozen or so games with Bruna, people really did leave me alone in favour of greater perceived threats. Somewhat surprisingly, I would end the game with the most lands by a fair margin, and won a disproportionately high number of games with it (somewhere in the order of 75%). Emeria can be backbreaking. So can Avacyn. If you just hit your land drops all game because you have a lot of land search in your deck, you can recast a value general, or a general that admits narrow answers, over and over again.

3. White has some mechanically unique effects, some of which are very powerful. I will freely cede that white is the weakest colour in EDH, ever since red got passable draw. The only thing white has left is the quality of their exile removal, plethora of board wipes, and capacity for life gain (but not really that last one). However, white has stuff no other colour has: Avacyn, Angel of Hope for blanket and persistent indestructibility, and Brisela, Voice of Nightmares, who... is a giant mess of things, not duplicated much elsewhere.

-----

Obviously, the more cutthroat your tables are, the less viable this becomes as players demand hard answers for powerful combos or loops, basically requiring a some majority of the players at the table to play Blue for the flexibility of counterspells. My group can definitely lose under the weight of several recasts of Bruna, but I would not expect other groups to succumb to the same thing.

Sometimes playing Monowhite is all about bringing a knife to a knife fight, you know what I mean?

_________________
Check out my old column, Generally Speaking, at CommanderCast.com
http://www.commandercast.com/category/a ... y-speaking

Follow me on Twitter: @generalspeak


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Nov-11 5:51 pm 
User avatar

Joined: 2011-Nov-16 1:14 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Prague, Heart of Europe
Like it or not, card advantage is king, especially in battlecruiser multiplayer. Even red gets it nowadays. White is the last color left behind in this regard, and although the niche cards are there, the problem is that they're, well, niche, meaning that no particular strategy has reached the critical mass, yet.

Say I want to build a mono-W Enchantress deck. I have Mesa Enchantress. If I have enough Auras, I can add Kor Spiritdancer, Sage's Reverie and perhaps Sram as commander. That's it. Not a lot to build on.

I just did the search. There are currently 141 mono-W cards that contain the words "draw" and "card" in their text boxes. If you take out cycling and cantrips, you're left with less than a dozen cards in the history of Magic. Again, not a lot to build on.

_________________
I could be wrong. I'm just not in the mood.
tempesteye wrote:
In my early teens I was a Timmy.
In my late teens I was a Spike.
In my 20's I was a Johnny.
Now, I just like to play.
'Active decks' list here.
Currently hiring servants for my palace, made from my own walls of text.


Top
 Online Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Nov-12 3:09 am 

Joined: 2019-Jul-18 7:14 am
Age: Drake
Antis wrote:
Like it or not, card advantage is king, especially in battlecruiser multiplayer. Even red gets it nowadays. White is the last color left behind in this regard, and although the niche cards are there, the problem is that they're, well, niche, meaning that no particular strategy has reached the critical mass, yet.

Say I want to build a mono-W Enchantress deck. I have Mesa Enchantress. If I have enough Auras, I can add Kor Spiritdancer, Sage's Reverie and perhaps Sram as commander. That's it. Not a lot to build on.

I just did the search. There are currently 141 mono-W cards that contain the words "draw" and "card" in their text boxes. If you take out cycling and cantrips, you're left with less than a dozen cards in the history of Magic. Again, not a lot to build on.


I think puresteel paladin gets there. That is how my mono white deck works, soldiers and their arms. Artifacts help get cards. Skullclamp draws them in a white deck. Sword of Light and Shadow gets cards from the graveyard.

White has some cards in color that also do this. Remember the Fallen doesn't say draw 2 cards, but it nets the same outcome, possibly better if your yard is loaded. The humble argivian archealogist lets you get back cards too. If it is an equipment, then the paladin triggers again and so on.

White also has land tax and weathered wayfarer. They get cards too. My point is you can amass resources in white without having to draw a card.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Why do people play Monocolor? (Command Zone Rant...)
AgePosted: 2019-Nov-12 10:44 am 
User avatar

Joined: 2009-Aug-20 7:49 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: New Hampshire
Dee123 wrote:
My point is you can amass resources in white without having to draw a card.

This. Also consider white's other source of card advantage - wrathing the world into oblivion.

_________________
"The President's job - and if someone sufficiently vain and stupid is picked he won't realize this - is not to wield power, but to draw attention away from it." -- Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide tot he Galaxy Radio Transcripts predicting the future.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 54 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3, 4  Next

All times are UTC - 7 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 31 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to: