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Cast Commander, Draw Deck, Win Game | Demonlord Belzenlok | $25 | Budget Commander


Today on Budget Commander we're going to draw our entire deck by casting our commander and then immediately win the game. With just a $25 deck. I'll show you how!

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First the list, then the explanation:

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This list is a budget version of a fantastic guide I found on TappedOut by Bazzul. All credit goes to them for providing this incredible deck!

Step 1: Cast Commander, Draw Deck

Step 1 is the easy part: when Demonlord Belzenlok enters the battlefield, you essentially draw a nonland card and are dealt 1 damage. If the mana value of that card is 4 or greater, you get to repeat that process. So to draw our entire deck, all we need to do is make sure that no nonland card in our deck is under 4MV before casting our commander.

The main goal of step 1 is to ramp out Belzenlok one or two turns early for faster wins. We can only run 4+MV nonland cards we can't run a lot of the traditional ramp options, but we still have some options: lands that can produce more than one mana such as Peat Bog and Mage-Ring Network work great here, and a turn 4 mana rock like Hedron Archive (yes, I'm recommending Archive here) let us combo kill on turn 5.

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We still take damage equal to the number of cards that Belzenlok puts into our hand, so we want the deck to be mostly lands so we aren't dealt that much damage; my version runs 72 lands, so we only take a maximum of 27 damage from our demon daddy. If our wise opponents have knocked down our life total under 27, however, we can run cards that will give Belzenlok lifelink so his damage doesn't kill us, cards like Whip of Erebos or Homicidal Seclusion.

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In order to combo off, we'll need either:

  • 4BB if 1) an opponent controlling a Forest (or Forest dual) and you control a Swamp or 2) you control 5+ Swamps

OR

  • 4BBB

OR

If we can meet any of those three criteria, we can cast Demonlord Belzenlok, put all the nonland cards in our deck into our hand, and proceed to Step 2!

Step 2: Combo Win

  1. Cast Demonlord Belzenlok, putting all the nonland cards from your library into your hand and taking that much damage (maximum 27).
  2. Exile a non-combo card (anything not mentioned here) to cast Unmask on yourself and discard Phantasmagorian.
  3. Activate Phantasmagorian, discarding Skirge Familiar, Dread Return, and a non-combo card to return Phantasmagorian to your hand.
  4. Now you need a third creature on the battlefield. Cast Deepwood Legate for free if any opponent controls a Forest (or Forest dual), or cast Dross Golem for free if you control 5+ Swamps. If you can't do either and have no third creature already then you'll need an extra B: you'll need to activate Phantasmagorian two additional times (holding priority) to discard 6 non-combo cards to delve Sibsig Muckdraggers for B, returning a non-combo creature to hand.
  5. Cast Hollow One for free.
  6. Flashback Dread Return, sacrificing Demonlord Belzenlok, Hollow One, and your third creature (Deepwood Legate / Dross Golem / Sibsig Muckdraggers) to reanimate Skirge Familiar.
  7. Use Skirge Familiar's ability to discard Cackling Imp, Grim Poppet, Cinderhaze Wretch, Lunar Avenger, and Souldrinker BBBBB.
  8. Spend BBBB to cast Necrotic Ooze.
  9. Lose 3 life to put a +1/+1 counter on Necrotic Ooze (from Souldrinker).
  10. Remove a +1/+1 counter from Necrotic Ooze to give it haste (from Lunar Avenger).
  11. Tap Necrotic Ooze to make an opponent lose 1 life (from Cackling Imp).
  12. Put a -1/-1 counter on Necrotic Ooze to untap it (from Cinderhaze Wretch).
  13. Target any creature other than Necrotic Ooze, remove the -1/-1 counter from Necrotic Ooze as a cost. Then, before the "Put a -1/-1 counter on another target creature" resolves hold priority (from Grim Poppet).
  14. With the "Put a -1/-1 counter on another target creature" on the stack, repeat steps 11-13 to make your opponents lose infinite life and win the game.

TLDR: it's a Necrotic Ooze combo!

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Further Upgrades

The $25 version of this deck is the definition of a glass cannon: you win if your opponents don't have instant-speed interaction, but if they can stop your combo before Necrotic Ooze is on the battlefield (once it's on the battlefield you can combo through most interaction) then you're essentially dead.

The single best upgrade to add extra resiliency to the deck is Dread: if your opponents manage to stop your combo, you can discard Dread either to hand size or to Necrotic Ooze, putting it on top of your library to prevent decking yourself and letting you try again next turn. It costs $7.50, but it's worth the large price tag.

The next upgrade is replacing Lunar Avenger and Souldrinker with Skithiryx, the Blight Dragon: Skittles provides Necrotic Ooze haste using a single card slot instead of two and not requiring you spending life (the B mana cost is irrelevant thanks to Skirge Familiar). It makes the combo a bit easier, lets you add something else useful to the deck like an additional tutor, and if your combo is completely shut down then you can maybe kill someone with Skittles infect damage.

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Closing Thoughts

This is a silly combo deck. The novelty here is that casting a single spell -- your commander -- allows you to not only draw your entire deck, but proceed to immediately win the game. I think that's very unique and cool! Plus, the heart of the combo is just $50 -- you can see the blinged-out version from the original primer over here if you're interested in upgrading further.

That said, it's an incredibly linear deck: it does the same thing every game, and tries to win by turn 4 or 5. It's definitely a cool deck to whip out every once in a while and get a few laughs, but not something I'd recommend piloting regularly.

And that's the 1-Card Combo Belzenlok deck! Big thanks to Bazzul for creating the primer, the deck is a blast! As for you, the viewers: if you've got any cool budget brews you'd like me to cover, let me know in the comments section! We're bringing back Budget Commander as a semi-regular thing so I'm open to suggestions for future topics. Thanks for reading!



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