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Thread: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

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    Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    New sets get me brewing. Anytime there is a cheap tutor, especially at instant speed itís worth taking a look. Mausoleum Secrets has some limitations for sure, you have to jump through some hoops, but are those hoops unmanageable? And are the benefits worth it?

    Mausoleum Secrets
    1B
    Instant
    Undergrowth ó Search your library for a black card with converted mana cost less than or equal to the number of creature cards in your graveyard, reveal it, put it into your hand, then shuffle your library.

    My first inclination is to try to build something around a deck that would want Street Wraith and Faerie Macabre. They are both free to get in your graveyard, and are both legacy power level already.
    So thatís a good first step, but what else can we be doing?

    I was thinking of other cards that could synergize with both of those creatures and thought of Oath of Ghouls. This reserve list beauty (Oath of Druids isnít reserved?!?!) can be a powerful but slow card advantage engine and it cares about creatures in your Graveyard (Wraith) and keeping creatures out of your opponents graveyards (Macabre).

    So two reasonably costed card advantage and tutoring engines that synergize with creatures that power them up. A good and grindy start. So what sort of deck would want these sort of actions going on?
    Probably a mid range or control, we arenít fast, and we care about the game going long and have the ability to find the perfect answers and to re use them if they are creatures or if we have a creature that can regrow them, which luckily black already has in Xaiodun, the One Eyed.
    That leaves us with a skeleton that looks like this as a starting point. Itís possible we donít want that many Oaths or Secrets but Iíd like to start them out high to really see how well they work.

    3 Oath of Ghouls
    3 Mausoleum Secrets
    4 Street Wraith
    4 Faerie Macabre
    1 Xaiodun, the One Eyed

    So we need some disruption to get us to the late game to then grind out opponents, we are also going to be pretty mana hungry. I havenít done extensive Gatherer Searches, just yet but I have a good idea of the things I want in here in theory. We donít actually need to just pack a ton of bullets in here, there are a lot of reasonable catch all answers, and we can use bullets to cover more corner cases.

    Some options for disruption:
    Lilly of the Vale
    Thoughtseize
    Therapy
    IOK
    Collective Brutality
    Hymn

    Lilly works well with Oath of Ghouls. Lilliana the last hopeís negative ability is also pretty valuable in here, for dumping things in the bin but might not be what we want in the main deck.
    Iím leery of thought seize, as our draw engine is going to be pretty life loss based, because of Street Wraiths, which leads me to want some Brutalities.
    Iíve run IOK in Pox, but every time you need to grab a 4+ spell it drives you nuts.
    Hymn is great, but we are probably going to be very bottle necked at 2.

    Assassinís Trophy seems like the best catch all we could be on. (Iím probably going to run a split of Abrupt Decay and Maelstrom Pulse in their place until I can afford them or the price comes down, which will make the deck much worse Iím sure, but I have to start somewhere).

    Fulminator mage interests me quite a bit. We want to slow the game down and create mana advantages, and we want things that can self sacrifice or get into the graveyard on their own.

    4 Fulminator Mage

    3-4 Assassinís Trophy
    2 Lilliana of the Vale
    2 Collective Brutality
    2 Cabal Therapy
    2 Thoughtseize
    1 Toxic Deluge

    We need some more creatures if this is where we are starting, and we need to pack in some more life gain as well.

    Dark rituals are something that might be interesting too for kicking up the speed, but they add some inconsistency and also might not work great with how our curve is. Probably worth testing.

    The life gain options arenít super great, I think Kalitas, traitor of Geth and Gray Merchant of Asphodel are decent as one ofs, but are going to be hard to tutor for. Gifted Aetherborn is actually a pretty decent card, but not very powerful, itís sort of what we are in the market for.

    Other creatures we are in the market for with effects that work with our overall plan:

    Kitesail Freebooter
    Fleshbag Maurader
    Minister of Pain
    Rotting Rats

    With a first draft like this Iím ok with a bunch of weird numbers and one ofís just to see what works and what is valuable to us.
    I worry that there isnít enough early action, and want to up the 1 drops a bit.


    4 Street Wraith
    4 Faerie Macabre
    1 Xaiodun, the One Eyed
    4 Fulminator Mage
    1 Kitesail Freebooter
    1 Fleshbag Maurader
    1 Minister of Pain
    2 Gifted Aetherborn

    3 Oath of Ghouls
    3 Mausoleum Secrets
    3 Assassinís Trophy
    1 Abrupt Decay
    2 Lilliana of the Vale
    2 Collective Brutality
    2 Cabal Therapy
    2 Thoughtseize
    1 Toxic Deluge
    1 Fatal Push

    4 Wasteland
    3 Bayou
    6 Swamp
    6 Fetches
    1 Urborg, tomb of Yawgmoth


    This looks like it needs a bunch more creatures to turn our engines on a bit. I wonder if we can just drop some of the spells for similar creatures.

    Another idea I had was run the full boat of Stitchers Suppliers and Cabal Therapies. It not only powers up your engines it also helps with the 1 drop slot.

    Testing will tell.

    After sideboarding there has to be a strategy to mitigate Surgical Extraction. Iím not sure exactly what that will entail, it might just be our own surgicals to grab theirs.

    I think this is a fun idea with some potential, and would love to get some feedback especially if Iím missing something super obvious.

    On paper this looks a little clunky but itís doing a lot of powerful midrange stuff that really isnít present in the format right now and I think some of these strategies are worth exploring even if the exact details arenít right in this early phase.

  2. #2

    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    I actually bought a playset of oath thinking it would be a good engine sans DRS.
    This might be a promising shell

  3. #3

    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    Just saw this deck and I'm absolutely in love. As a mono-color player at heart, I'm thinking 4x Port, 4x Wastelands, 4x Urborg, and a bunch of swamps along with Dark Ritual, Sticher's Supplier, and Cabal Therapy will probably be my set up. The other idea I had was to run Bomat, Badlands and pray the next set gives us good stuff for BR. We could even go for a BR reanimation backup plan. I'll drop some lists later, still getting used to the forum.

    -Gasmaskdandy

  4. #4

    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    I've played oath of ghouls in a number of brews. It combos with...leyline of the void...Scavenging Ooze...the new Tormod's Crypt bear...contamination...Shriekmaw...buried alive getting necrotic ooze and friends...(tidehollow sculler if you have a sac outlet and ideally vial). The new tutor you mention can find helm if you run Leyline of the Void.
    Quote Originally Posted by Laser Brains View Post
    With the printing of Gigantosaurus, Thrashing Brontodon and Steel Leaf Champion the deck has evolved from good to very competitive. Anyway, give it a few play tests if you are interested and let me know what you think.

    Winter Maze

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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    Oath of Ghouls doesnít target so you could use Silent Gravestone vs. Surgical.


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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    Quote Originally Posted by maharis View Post
    Oath of Ghouls doesnít target so you could use Silent Gravestone vs. Surgical.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    That's true and i think that card is super powerful, but it does shut off our Macabre's which might be an issue. It's possible keeping both in after board could be fine vs very grave reliant decks.

    I think it could probably survive one surgical but the second would be difficult, so surgical on surgical could be a strategy too.


    Thanks for the kind words Gasmaskdandy


    @Kinda, the new tutor can't fetch helm as it's not a black card.




    I had another idea, might be too weak, but twisted Abomination or any of the mana cycling creatures might be a good draw engine and something to do on turn one. This would relieve pressure on the street wraiths.

    Options include:


    Architects of will
    Horror of the broken lands
    Archfiend of Ifnir
    Undead Gladiator
    Lurching Rotbeast


    Horror seems the best by far, but Architects have their reasons and a one of Archfiend could be useful.

    If there is an additional cycling package it will let a lighter mana package be feasible.

  7. #7

    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    Good point...um...painters servant plus grindstone?
    Quote Originally Posted by Laser Brains View Post
    With the printing of Gigantosaurus, Thrashing Brontodon and Steel Leaf Champion the deck has evolved from good to very competitive. Anyway, give it a few play tests if you are interested and let me know what you think.

    Winter Maze

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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    If you're cycling a ton and filling your graveyard with creatures, I would consider these cards:

    Living End
    Living Death
    Crypt of Agadeem
    Yahenni's Expertise


    Crypt seems bonkers, potentially close to Gaea's Cradle power level in the right circumstances. It allows for fairly high converted mana costs to be feasible, like with Living Death. Multiple Street Wraiths and/or Faerie Macabres, or an enabler like Putrid Imp, could make it tap for easily 4+ on turn 3. This might be too slow without acceleration like Dark Ritual, but I think Dark Ritual would work fine as well. You then have big mana and a big payoff (4+ creatures on the battlefield, hopefully lethal the turn after you cast it.) This might be closer to Modern power level, but it still seems really cool.
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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Safety View Post
    If you're cycling a ton and filling your graveyard with creatures, I would consider these cards:

    Living End
    Living Death
    Crypt of Agadeem
    Yahenni's Expertise



    Crypt seems bonkers, potentially close to Gaea's Cradle power level in the right circumstances. It allows for fairly high converted mana costs to be feasible, like with Living Death. Multiple Street Wraiths and/or Faerie Macabres, or an enabler like Putrid Imp, could make it tap for easily 4+ on turn 3. This might be too slow without acceleration like Dark Ritual, but I think Dark Ritual would work fine as well. You then have big mana and a big payoff (4+ creatures on the battlefield, hopefully lethal the turn after you cast it.) This might be closer to Modern power level, but it still seems really cool.

    Living End is just too slow, unless we are building around it. I think Living Death is sort of in the same camp too. I think once we have Card advantage engines on line, or are able to tutor for 5 drops we shouldn't need much help winning form that position, but i could be wrong, maybe having a nice one of "I win" style card to close things out quickly is what we want to be doing.

    I'm not sure what Yahenni's Expertise is supposed to do for us.

    Crypt however is very interesting. Coming in tapped is a big draw back, but I'll definitely try a couple out and see if they are too clunky.

    They would help us to start deploying the big 5 drop threats when we are trying to actually win the game after it's been locked up.

    Was doing some thinking and i think a 1 of Bone Shredder should go in here. It's clunky but it is very recursive and a flying blocker is pretty valuable as well.


    I think i'll start testing this:

    4 Street Wraith
    4 Faerie Macabre
    4 Horror of the Broken Lands
    4 Fulminator Mage
    1 Xaiodun, the One-Eyed
    1 Fleshbag Marauder
    1 Minister of Pain
    1 Bone Shredder

    3 Oath of Ghouls
    3 Mausoleum Secrets
    3 Assassinís Trophy
    1 Abrupt Decay
    2 Liliana of the Veil
    2 Collective Brutality
    4 Thoughtseize
    1 Toxic Deluge
    1 Fatal Push

    4 Wasteland
    3 Bayou
    4 Swamp
    6 Fetches
    2 Crypt of Agadeem
    1 Urborg, tomb of Yawgmoth


    Would like a recursive creature that could make the opponent discard. But Thrull Surgeon is too clunky. I'll do a gatherer search to see if there is anything interesting.

    With Horror in the mix for the draw engine, i'm more ok with Thoughtseizes being in here as our life total will be less pressured now.

    koskun falls might be going to deep, but with our fairly heavy land destruction theme i would be interested in this maybe out of the board. But we don't really have cheap creatures to keep if fuelled.

  10. #10

    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    I'm not sure if this helps but off the top of my head: Maybe Tortured Existence with or instead of Oath of Ghouls. If so Squee, Goblin Nabob. Also cards like Entomb and Anger come to mind.
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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    Expertise casts our Living Ends for free. With so much cycling it isn't unrealistic to get both in your hand at once.

    I misunderstood your intent, I thought you were looking for an explosive combo deck not a fair grindy one. Oath of Ghouls is definitely very slow. With Dark Ritual and Crypt of Agadeem you can afford the higher end on the spells like Living Death. I figured you wanted to cycle a bunch and then get them all back for a lethal attack.

    I thought the free cycling cards (Faerie/Street Wraith) were a very cool idea to start building around because it enables fast and powerful Mausoleum Secrets. If you had 12-16 slots of this type of effect you could really build something explosive. Even with Dark Ritual + cyclers for B or 1 so you can draw into more mana sources/cyclers. Threshold will happen quickly for Cabal Ritual.

    4x Lotus Petal
    4x Dark Ritual
    4x Cabal Ritual
    1x Chrome Mox

    4x Faerie Macabre
    4x Street Wraith
    4x Archfiend of Ifnir
    4x Horror of the Broken Lands
    4x Lurching Rotbeast

    4x Mausoleum Secrets
    2x Living Death

    3x Cabal Therapy
    4x Thoughtseize

    13x Swamp
    1x Crypt of Agadeem

    Turns 1-2 should be a flurry of mana and cycling, ending with a Mausoleum Secrets in hand. You can accomplish this with only Lotus Petal + Dark Ritual, which means you can sometimes get a crypt down t1. Realistically you'll probably set up a few cyclers, discard, and get mana situated. That should set you up with a turn 3-4 Living Death and lethal attackers. Mausoleum is looking for only one target, and that's Living Death. The Expertise + Living End costs 1 mana less, but that probably isn't a big deal. Five mana is 2 Dark Rituals or 1 Cabal Ritual after threshold. There is t1 combo potential here, although probably not reliably.


    *shrug* That's how I would do it...

    EDIT: Cabal Therapy + Veteran Explorer seems interesting as a mana engine as well. This allows Verdant Catacombs to get Dryad Arbor for Therapy, and green opens up disruptive elements like Abrupt Decay, Assassin's Trophy, and Krosan Grip.

    EDIT#2: Bone Shredder is inferior to Shriekmaw in every way.
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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    If you are going turbo combo the card you want is song of the damned.
    But yes that's a very different deck. I think control/midrange makes more sense, if we are going fast combo, then why aren't we just reanimator? There really isn't a good reason.

    As for Bone Shredder, it's superior in that it only costs 3 to tutor up. It also Flies, and it self Sacrifices so you can cast it every turn. So yes it's superior to shreikmaw in here, in 3 different ways.

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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    Quote Originally Posted by ReAnimator View Post
    If you are going turbo combo the card you want is song of the damned.
    YES, this is definitely very good. It makes Crypt of Agadeem obsolete, for sure. It will probably take up some number of Lotus Petals, or maybe the Chrome Mox. Collective Brutality seems good here as well, if only to act as removal for Containment Priest.

    But yes that's a very different deck. I think control/midrange makes more sense, if we are going fast combo, then why aren't we just reanimator? There really isn't a good reason.
    Not losing to Diabolic Edict seems ok to me. Also, the deck would be incredibly cheap and consistent with all of the cyclers to set up the combo turn.

    As for Bone Shredder, it's superior in that it only costs 3 to tutor up.
    Why would you waste MSecrets to tutor a Bone Shredder when you could win the game instead?

    It also Flies, and it self Sacrifices so you can cast it every turn. So yes it's superior to shreikmaw in here, in 3 different ways.
    Shriekmaw has fear, 3 power, and is better hard cast at 5 than Bone Shredder at 2. If you're going fair, every bit of power counts. Bone Shredder is good with Oath of Ghouls...but Shriekmaw will eventually be better because you'll hit 5 mana, hardcast it, and attack for 3. There's a reason Bone Shredder doesn't see play anymore, and most of that reason is Shriekmaw. We're splitting hairs over 2 fringe cards that are hardly playable, lol. Volrath's Stronghold + Shriekmaw still sees play in some Nic Fit decks, and Shrieky sees play in Deadguy Ale lists as well.

    TL;DR - Oath of Ghouls opens you up to slow grave hate. At least MSecrets + fast mana + Living End can combo within one turn.
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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    I like the idea of a fast "Grave Storm" deck but it is way way different than what i'm going for. Might be worth starting up another thread if you want to explore it more. Stitcher's supplier and maybe some Stinkweed Imps could potentially make it even faster. I still don't think building an all in combo that is slower than other options and reanimator is going to get you very far other than having fun.

    I know slow and grindy is less sexy, but i also think it would be more resilient and able to compete with the fair decks in the format. It would be more able to fight through hate and disruption, and more able to stop your opponents game plans.

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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    Fair enough. Sorry if I took the discussion 'off the rails' a bit. Good luck with Oath of Ghouls!
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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange



    Well this thing is a gigantic upgrade over Fleshbag Marauder!!!!

    Holy crap this does a lot of good things, and it's not dead vs empty boards!


    @Mr. Safety
    No worries happy to have you chime in.

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    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    Quote Originally Posted by JackaBo View Post
    I actually bought a playset of oath thinking it would be a good engine sans DRS.
    This might be a promising shell
    I wish it was true. :)


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  18. #18

    Re: Mausoleum Secrets / Oath of Ghouls Midrange

    Bought my playset of Oaths. I'll be testing the deck with a friend either tonight or soon, and I'll report back. I'm going to try going mono-black, but I'm stuck on whether or not to run port or maybe painter-stone. Testing will give us results.

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