This entry is part 5 of 7 in the series Up! Your! Deck!

378127_10150441621792624_1477312954_nWell done, Eric. So much for getting this article up last week. Y’know, like you said you would. 

You freaking dunce.

No, it’s cool. I can totally fix this!

How’s that? Did you not post the article because you were too busy building a time machine? That you can now use to go back and post the article?

… Noooo.

WELL THEN WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO, GENIUS!?

I was thinking I could make it up to them by giving them a preview of an upcoming theme week? In addition to the article?

… That might work. Maybe.

Okay, how about a preview, an article, and a deck list?

Alright, that will have to do. Oh, and Eric?

What?

Stop talking to yourself. It’s frigging weird.

I don't know what he's talking about, man. Seems perfectly healthy to me.

I don’t know what he’s talking about, man. Seems perfectly healthy to me.

Now that you have had that terrifying visit inside my head (You think that was bad? Try living here.), let’s get back to my much delayed article on the final part of picking your general: Deciding if you want a general dependent or general independent deck.

This is an important choice to make before you start deck building because it will drastically affect the direction in which your deck goes, and there are huge pros and cons to each. Let’s take a quick look before I weigh in on what I think a ‘perfect’ EDH deck should use.

General Dependent

General dependent decks are powerful and efficient, and most of the decks you think of when you think of the strongest decks in EDH are general dependent. They build themselves around reliably using their general and exploiting its abilities to maximum affect. Zur the Enchanter, Jhoira of the Ghitu and Edric, Spymaster of Trest are all examples of powerful general dependent decks.

The thing about general dependent decks is that you know what your game plan is going to be in every game, so it’s easy to pack in as many cards as you can to protect that game plan or to make it go off faster. A strong general dependent deck is often able to consistently kill at least one opponent in the first ten turns of a game. (That is, if the deck builder designed their deck to do that. There are plenty of general dependent decks that are designed to fishbowl the game out for hours.)

The fishbowl ones are used to seeing this expression on everyone else.

The fishbowl ones are used to seeing this expression on everyone else’s face.

However, because your game plan is always the same, everyone else will eventually always know what it is too. It is not uncommon for a good general dependent deck to come in and stomp all over a playgroup for two weeks, only for it to then get meta’ed against so hard that it becomes essentially unplayable afterwards.

And once a general dependent deck is meta’ed against, it’s done. Even if it was an all-powerful curb-stomping deck before, every deck has weaknesses that can be exploited. Once people have figured out what yours are, a general dependent deck is dead in the water. Often something as simple as having your general tucked is enough to turn your deck into the equivalent of Gotham City without a Batman – sure, there are other options for heroes, but it’s just not the same.

Hmm, I feel like something is missing here but I just can't... Quite... Put my finger on it...

Hmm, I feel like something is missing here but I just can’t… Quite… Put my finger on it…

But being the glass cannon isn’t the only downside to playing a general dependent deck. The other big problem is that if you are prone to getting worn out on repetition or if you have only one deck, it’s easy to get fatigue from playing the same cards to try and pull off the same game plan over and over. If you are planning on building a general dependent deck as your go-to for EDH games, make sure you really like that general. Because you will be seeing a lot of him.

General Independent

Your other option is to build a general independent deck, which tends to have far fewer weaknesses than a general dependant deck but also tends to be much weaker in a void. (Though I’m not sure any deck should ever actually be judged on its worth ‘in a void’. Who the hell is actually playing their decks in a void? Astronauts? Aliens? The cast of Star Trek?)

Eric, you had best stop talking $#!^ before my Captain Sisay deck "Makes it so" all up and down your scrawny @$$.

Eric, you had best stop talking $#!^ before my Captain Sisay deck “Makes it so” all up and down your scrawny @$$.

Of course, making a general independent deck that actually works means making a 99 card singleton deck that functions well on its own. That is sometimes as easy as making any other deck, and sometimes it’s as difficult as solving a Rubik’s cube while hanging upside down by your feet and getting sprayed by gorillas holding Super Soakers who happen to be singing the Icelandic national anthem.

(We don’t have picture for that? Nowhere? Really? Alright, I guess we’ll just move on then.)

Of course, building a general independent deck doesn’t mean that you have to pick a general just for the colours. Ideally, a general independent deck would run a commander that enables (or is enabled by) the deck, without designing the deck so that they require each other. Rafiq of the Many is a powerful deck that can easily be designed to be general independent. Another example is my Lyzolda, the Blood Witch deck. Or if you’re looking at upcoming cards, both Marath, Will of the Wild and Oloro, Ageless Ascetic look like powerful general independent options.

The Verdict

Even though they are generally (See what I did there? Generally? Haha… Okay, screw you. I’m hilarious.) weaker, I am going to recommend that you build a general independent deck for your “perfect” EDH deck. The greater variety of games you get out of it will make it more fun for you and for whomever you’re playing against. Also, it will be harder to hate you out of games if your deck is general independent and it will be easier to modify your deck and game plan as your meta requires.

Okay, that’s pretty much it for today, I think we can wrap this all up…  Oh wait. I promised you a sneak peak, didn’t I? AND A DECK LIST?! Crud, I’m gonna be here a little while longer.

Coming up on Commandercast.com

So, as you have no doubt noticed, Commandercast.com has started doing theme weeks. You may have also noticed that the new Commander 2013 product has been spoiled, as it will be released soon. Seeing as we are a commander themed site, it’s very possible that we may or may not be doing something themed around these new commander themed products. Just maybe.

And since I am a staunch lover of Rakdos and a staunch hater of blue, it would make sense for me to maybe play a few games with that new Jund deck. Mmmm, kobolds.

Om nom nom, Eat those screechy little buggers. They are only 0/1's anyway, no one is going to miss them.

Om nom nom, eat those screechy little buggers. They’re only 0/1’s anyway, no one is going to miss them.

Of course, I’m always talking about how the meta where I live is super competitive, so that precon won’t win me too many games. (Okay, it’s going to get eaten alive.) As such, I have already designed a *cough* slightly modified list for me to switch to after a couple games. So, I would like to proudly present you with…

Eric’s “Prossh, Breeder (and Eater) of Kobolds” Deck

General

Prossh, Skyraider of Kher

Creatures

Birds of Paradise
Sakura-Tribe Elder
Dark Confidant
Reassembling Skeleton
Vexing Shusher
Champion of Lambholt
Somberwald Sage
Eternal Witness
Goblin Sharpshooter
Marton Stromgald
Anger
Oracle of Mul Daya
Ogre Battledriver
Solemn Simulacrum
Spellbreaker Behemoth
Purphoros, God of the Forge
Furystoke Giant
Acidic Slime
Mycoloth
Sire of Insanity
Avenger of Zendikar

Artifacts

Mana Crypt
Sol Ring
Sensei’s Divining Top
Skullclamp
Lightning Greaves
Crucible of Worlds

Enchantments

Survival of the Fittest
Goblin Bombardment
Earthcraft
Bitterblossom
Sylvan Library
Phyrexian Arena
Fecundity
Awakening Zone
Beastmaster Ascension
Shared Animosity
Food Chain

Planeswalkers

Sarkhan Vol
Garruk Wildspeaker
Vraska the Unseen
Karn Liberated

Spells

Vampiric Tutor
Worldly Tutor
Mind Twist
Thoughtseize
Entomb
Abrupt Decay
Night’s Whisper
Demonic Tutor
Maelstrom Pulse
Beast Within
Cultivate
Kodama’s Reach
Toxic Deluge
Read the Bones
Chaos Warp
Ranger’s Path
Hunting Wilds
Skyshroud Claim
Jarad’s Orders

Lands

– 5xMountain
– 5xForest
– 4xSwamp
Ancient Tomb
Reflecting Pool
Kessig Wolf Run
Strip Mine
Polluted Delta
Overgrown Tomb
Bayou
Taiga
Badlands
Command Tower
Blood Crypt
Stomping Ground
Misty Rainforest
Verdant Catacombs
Arid Mesa
Bloodstained Mire
City of Brass
Windswept Heath
Wooded Foothills
Volrath’s Stronghold
Cavern of Souls
Marsh Flats
Scalding Tarn
Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth

If you actually read the article written above the deck list (and if you did, thank you. I’m glad I’m not just making pop culture jokes at myself) then you realize that this is a very general dependent deck. It is completely capable of winning on turn 5 or 6, and if you take away my general I will cry rivers of tears. Of course, I don’t really care if you counter him, seeing as you get kobolds from Prossh on casting and not on entering the battlefield. What’s blue gonna do about that?! Mwuhahaha!

Wait, what? Oh, goddammit!

Wait, what? Oh, goddammit!

If you want to tell Eric that general dependent is clearly superior, or that he forgot to talk about general non-existent deck types, or basically just want to preach about how wrong he is, do so in the comments below. Or hit him up via email at EricBonvie@gmail.com, or on twitter @ThatBonvieGuy. And don’t forget to listen to Rival’s Duel so that you can also hear Nole Clauson telling him that he’s wrong, if you are getting tired of the sound of your own voice saying it.

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