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Mono Black Auras

Written by James Heslip on . Posted in Casual Magic

Mono Black Auras

James Heslip

James is a budget Magic connoisseur who values silly strategies and rogue decks. He has been playing Magic since 1998, and competing in Legacy events since 2010. When he is not teaching high school English, he can be found brewing Casual and Legacy decks to play with his students and peers. Always appreciative of feedback, he loves it when people send suggestions and share crazy decks with him!

There have been some powerful and iconic enchantments in Black’s history, including Phyrexian Arena, Grave Pact, Animate Dead, Bitterblossom, Unholy Strength, and the infamous Necropotence. There are few cards in the color’s history which actually support the card type. Of the few that do, however, there are some powerful options. So, Let’s take a look!

The Core

If you’ve read the previous aura-themed installments this week, then Mourning should come as no surprise to you. At a CMC of two, it’s more difficult to cast than its Red counterpart. What’s more, unlike White, there is no easy way for us to reduce its casting cost. However, when combined with Agent of Fates, it has a much more powerful effect than any of its kin. Infinite removal spells should not be a new concept to my readers, but don’t let familiarity blind you. This is a powerful combination. You will never run out of answers, but eventually, your opponent will run out of threats.

Heroic is also nothing new to this series. Tormented Hero gives early aggression and a bit of reach, should you need it. Bloodcrazed Hoplite benefits from almost every aura in the deck. With enough mana, you can still use it with Mourning, too. Just don’t accidentally leave it on. 

The Backup

Tormented Soul is one of the best one-drops we can play when considering the amount of power-enhancing auras we play. Ghosts are scary enough as is. Add a Predator’s Gambit or Sinister Strength to the mix, and you have something truly frightening. Oh, and let’s not forget about that beautiful smile! Skeletal Grimace on Soul means you can dump all your mana into pure unblockable damage. The regeneration effect means you can do so with little fear, too.

Grim Guardian is a high toughness wall which benefits from the multiple castings of Mourning that the deck hopes to achieve. Dead Weight can kill off early threats, while also triggering under Guardian. Mourning can lesson the damage of anything Weight can’t kill until we find our Agent of Fates.

The Final List

Cost: $8 at the time of publication

Playing the Deck

Just like its Red counterpart, the aggression starts early with this deck. Our Tormented one-drops start the damage off early, and Hoplite is quick to follow. Predator’s Gambit and Sinister Strength will boost your damage output, and put your opponent on their back leg early.

Mourning and Dead Weight should be used to hold your enemy’s aggression at bay. Once you find Agent of the Fates, the real fun begins. Simply kill off every blocker in your way and attack through unhindered.This is also your late game mana dump. Grim Guardian will close things off by this point, keeping your life points high while also draining your opponent’s.

Should you not find Mourning by the late game, Skeletal Grimace can also eat up your extra mana. In general, you may find yourself using it to boost your damage output more than your may have otherwise thought. Because your early drops have difficulty blocking, playing this deck can often turn into a race. Grimace helps you win that race when it’s enchanting the right face. 

Changeling Outcast and Dauthi Horror are basically additional Tormented Souls. If you like, you can play them and go for a more aggressive deck which has more focus on auras that improve damage output. In this case, cards which can protect your attackers should be considered. Kaya’s Ghostform, Demonic Vigor, Thrull Retainer, and in some ways Strength of Lunacy would shine here.

If aggression isn’t quite your thing, you can always go for a slower and more controlling list. Ashiok’s Adept, Blightcaster, and friends all add more disruption and destruction to your turns. This would make you more reliant on finding and casting Mourning, though. 


What did you think of today’s list? Tell me about it on my facebook page. You can also send me an email at Spooky386@gmail.com. Wondering how my decks have changed since I last wrote about them? Check out all of my updated deck lists here

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