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Much Abrew: Bloodletter Black Devotion (Historic)

Hello, everyone, and welcome to another edition of Much Abrew About Nothing! Today, we're heading to Historic to play one of my all-time favorite archetypes—Mono-Black Devotion—but with a huge new power boost from Lost Caverns of Ixalan! While we played Bloodletter of Aclazotz a few weeks ago in Standard for Budget Magic in a black burn deck, the first thing I thought when I saw the card was that it's perfect for Mono-Black Devotion. Not only does Bloodletter add three black mana symbols to the battlefield, which is exactly what Mono-Black Devotion wants, but it's also amazing with Gray Merchant of Asphodel thanks to its life-loss-doubling ability. With just a Bloodletter of Aclazotz on the battlefield, a single Gray Merchant of Asphodel will drain our opponent for 10. And with a few other black pips hanging out on the battlefield, it's pretty easy to one-shot kill our opponent with Gary drain! How good is Bloodletter of Aclazotz in Mono-Black Devotion in Historic? Let's find out on today's Much Abrew About Nothing!

Much Abrew: Bloodletter Black Devotion 

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Overall, there isn't a ton to say about the deck. We've played Mono-Black Devotion before, and the plan is the same: flood the board with black mana symbols to power up Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx and then use Gray Merchant of Asphodel to win the game. As such, rather than rehashing all of the deck's details, let's focus on the big new addition in Bloodletter of Aclazotz. Heading into our matches, I expected the Lost Caverns of Ixalan mythic to be good in the deck, but it actually exceeded my expectations by a lot. Overall, we went 11-3 with the deck at Mythic on Magic Arena, good for a jaw-dropping 79% match-win percentage, with many of these wins being attributable to Bloodletter.

If you go back and watch our games, you'll see several situations where we almost certainly would have lost if we were playing Mono-Black Devotion from a month ago but where Bloodletter of Aclazotz's ability to double up our Gray Merchant of Asphodel triggers allowed us to steal wins out of nowhere from an otherwise losing position. It's actually super easy to stack up a few non-threatening black mana symbols on the battlefield and then have a turn where we use Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx mana to play both Bloodletter and Gray Merchant and drain our opponent for 20 or more on the spot, which isn't something that Mono-Black Devotion could do in the past. In the past, it often felt like Mono-Black Devotion had to grind, fight, and claw for every win, but this is no longer the case now thanks to Bloodletter. 

In some ways, this reminds me of the evolution of Mono-Green Devotion, where players eventually figured out how to make it into a combo deck where you would win right away when you had your big Nykthos turn, rather than just adding a bunch of stuff to the battlefield and hoping for the best. Thanks to Bloodletter of Aclazotz, I wouldn't be surprised to find that Mono-Black Devotion is a very legitimate and maybe even top-tier deck in Historic! It's a huge, huge deal for the deck!


Anyway, that's all for today. As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, opinions, and suggestions in the comments, and you can reach me on Twitter @SaffronOlive or at

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