Home Strategy Magic 2014 Enter the Dracomancer deck guide: What’s yours is now food....

One of the only two tri-colour decks in DotP14, Enter the Dracomancer promises to make little Timmy’s eyes glow with really big dragons. No, really big. Bigger than that. Keep going. Look, we’re talking oneshotting players here. That big.

That is, if you live to play them.

Strength in omnomnom

Enter the Dracomancer is commonly regarded as one of the weakest decks in DotP14. What can I say, that is entirely true. It suffers to a heavy imbalance in its mana curve, meaning that you’ll spend the first turns twiddling your thumbs and praying your opponent doesn’t kill you before the big stuff comes around. Seeing as someone decided that White Weenie had to take the place as most overpowered deck in the game once again, Dracomancer doesn’t exactly have much going for it since it can hardly stop its own turn 4 death.

It’s not bad per se, but the format means that it only gets seventysomething spells total, most of which are high-cost bombs or manafixing to wrangle the tangle of triple colour, so its early game is really lacking. Don’t play this at any tournament. Still, for casual, it’s a fun deck even if not competitive.

It takes careful building, execution, and quite a fair bit of luck, too. If you expected this to rock because Jund (red-green-black) dominated tournaments for a while, you’re going to be sorely disappointed. Still, when it does work out, it’s nothing but fun to play. Even if you lose, at least you didn’t have to use Tryhard’s Glory to put up the fight you did. Oh, and did I mention that this deck’s win condition are dragons? Lots and lots of really big dragons? You’ll love it, I tell you. I guess it’s somewhat susceptible to heavy removal decks that don’t rely on damage since its winning bombs are strong and far between, but who cares when you’re summoning dragons?

Take what you have, do what you can, pray for the best

Unlike other decks in Duels of the Planeswalkers, Enter the Dracomancer actually has a fair array of tools from all of its colours. Mostly, anyway, and that every colour has to be satisfied means that you’ll still end up with a pathetic amount of each. Thus, it demands careful play more than any other deck. There are basically no alternative escape routes, so use your cards only when you need to, not when you can.

Speaking of no escape routes, most of this deck builds on synergy with what you already have on the board. Effectively, this means that things will either go really well or really badly, with little in between. Still, one perk of it is that you’ll be spanking decks that rely on cards like Pacifism to keep threats away and I suppose that’s a good thing somehow.

Enter the Dracomancer deck list (by mana cost)

60 cards, 11 Mountain, 7 Forest, 2 Swamp, Terramorphic Expanse

1 CMC

  • 1 Banefire

2 CMC

  • 3 Dragon Fodder
  • 1 Savage Twister

3 CMC

  • 3 Borderland Ranger
  • 2 Jund Charm
  • 1 Consume Strength
  • 4 Maelstrom Pulse
  • 4 Cultivate

4 CMC

  • 1 Spellbreaker Behemoth
  • 1 Bloodbraid Elf
  • 1 Ogre Battledriver
  • 3 Crucible of Fire
  • 2 Explosive Vegetation
  • 1 Archwing Dragon
  • 1 Sneak Attack

6+ CMC

  • 1 Broodmate Dragon
  • 2 Predator Dragon
  • 2 Dragon Broodmother
  • 1 Dragonlair Spider
  • 1 Flameblast Dragon
  • 1 Form of the Dragon
  • 1 Karrthus, Tyrant of Jund

Enter the Dracomancer card-by-card analysis (by mana cost)

Terramorphic Expanse: 3.5

I wouldn’t run four, but it does what it’s supposed to do reasonably well. It also thins your deck when you use it, giving you a higher chance of drawing spells. Add and remove as you find necessary. Speaking of mana, you’ll see that I proposed a build with only two Swamps. Considering this deck’s overall build, you are almost bound to have some sort of fetching going on by turn 3, so finding the Swamp should not be an issue. Nothing in this deck costs more than a single black mana, so that should be perfectly sufficient for the rare case where you have to use two black things in a single turn or if your other Swamp gets blown up.

Tukatongue Thallid: 2.5

A single green mana for something that can block and/or be eaten twice, though not at the same time. What’s not to like? For instance, that it will never show up when it’s needed and is useless in pretty much every situation. There are better ways of generating food.

Banefire: 4.0

Its second clause is nearly irrelevant as neither counters nor prevention are too prevalent in DotP14. Still, pay X mana, deal X damage to anything you want. A fair deal, especially with the lack of other efficient burn.

Dragon Fodder: 3.5

Reinforcements… or food? Regardless of in whose stomach the two end up, this is a solid turn two play. Not to mention it’s your only turn two play.

Dragon Breath: 3.0

Could be decent, but not really. Sure it gives haste, firebreathing, and recurs for free, but it has really bad synergy with itself. Even if you do manage to get it onto what you just played with some scrap mana, you won’t have any to pump that creature that turn. Even if you do, you should have maybe three or four mountains out before this becomes irrelevant. The pump it gives is minor and its recursion only works if you draw it and get it into the graveyard somehow. Meh.

Dragon Fangs: 2.0

Like Dragon Breath, but actually sucks pretty hard. More or less any of your guys who would trigger it already Trample and/or Flying, so it goes to waste in all but the rarest cases.

Artifact Mutation: 1.0

Didn’t we already go through this? It’s a really good card, mind you, but if you use it on anything that this game has to offer concerning artifacts, you are actually doing your opponent a favour. No one uses artifacts in this game, especially not costly ones, so this is a waste of a slot.

Savage Twister: 3.5

On the surface, it looks costly. Look at it this way: It’s a Banefire. Aimed at everything. For one mana more. Convinced yet? It’s unfortunate that most of your stuff will die in the blast, but those of your pretties which you would mind if they got killed are tough enough to survive it.

Dragonspeaker Shaman: 2.5

Sure it’s a 2/2 for three mana which is at least somewhat acceptable and he makes all of your dragons turn up faster. However, his cost requiring double red and being in the area where you usually just want to fix might result in getting your dragons out later than if you hadn’t forced yourself to play it.

Jund Battlemage: 3.0

Eats spare mana and craps out food that can also block. Not too shabby. Unfortunately, too shabby for this deck, as it only starts to make an impact when you don’t have the mana and/or the big omnomnomers are already on the field.

Borderland Ranger: 3.5

You desperately need all the early bodies that you can get, and this one isn’t too terrible. He ensures your Swamp will come out in time and still puts on some presence. Not necessarily what you deserve, but what you need.

Jund Charm: 4.5

In DotP13’s Mana Mastery deck, I always found this card somewhat lacking. Here, it’s a rockstar. Purge the field of impurities, strengthen one of your guys (preferrably in combat) or wipe a graveyard, all of which are great options for this deck. Who would’ve guessed that Jund Charm plays well in a Jund deck? Notably, you can use this to respond to any enters-the-graveyard triggers like Undying and negate them.

Consume Strength: 3.5

Remember Agony Warp? Well, this is basically that, except with almost guaranteed advantage. Nab one of their guys to make yours strong enough to kill another one of theirs, or give one of your guys a whopping +4/+4 advantage in combat! Strong, should be used.

Soul’s Fire: 3.0

How would you like your creatures to punch in the face anything on the opposing half, completely without danger? It won’t do much when things are going southward, but when you’ve got something notable on the field (even a Pacified one) it whoops ass. If nothing else, it’s direct burn. Unfortunately, by the time you get a big enough dude that this matters, you’ll have a big enough dude that it doesn’t. Isn’t Magic lovely?

Maelstrom Pulse: 4.0

Its cost is somewhat prohibitive with the rest of the things that you’ll be playing. Regardless, it’s your only choice as for direct destruction and it right down spanks token decks where a lot of creatures have the same name. It can also take care of any noncreature threats your opponent might have, so there’s another reason to run it. Don’t forget though that this will not resolve against Illusions due to their sacrifice clause, so you won’t be able to destroy more than one of them. It can, however, break their instawin Lord of the Unreal + Phantasmal Image combo.

Cultivate: 3.5

It fetches and ramps, but what else? In the meta that you have to face, doing nothing of note on your third turn can be the difference between life and death. Still, so can be not having two lands of your choice. It’s a necessary evil out of lack of something better.

Spellbreaker Behemoth: 4.0

Look at it this way: It’s a 5/5 for four mana that can’t be countered. You have to mind its double green cost, but beyond that, it’s pure goodness. Its second ability is not always going to be relevant, but it does put some pretty pressure on decks that could counter as they have more or less no way of getting rid of it and ensures your really big guys come through.

Hellkite Hatchling: 3.0

It could have had Flying by default, at least. In the best case scenario, it can also be a 5/5 flier on turn 4, so it’s not entirely terrible. Keep in mind however that that’ll use up at least two other cards. Not playing material.

Bloodbraid Elf: 4.5

Welcome to the Wheel of Fate! Today, we’ve got little Timmy here with us, ready to spin his fate! Are you ready? What will he get this time? Will it be a free Cultivate, or just a Banefire? I’m your host 3/2 Haste (my parents are terrible monsters) and I’ll be swinging right into the fray to at least tear a hole into the enemy’s defenses. Make sure you stay tuned for after the commercials when we’ll be meeting our second guest Hellkite Overlord to clean up the mess!

Ogre Battledriver: 4.5

There is a surprising lack of Haste in this deck. This fixes that problem, allowing your little pretties to be a major pain from the turn they come out onward. It’s basically the same effect as Dragon Breath, but with no mana investment. See my point?

Explosive Vegetation 3.0

It seems really good on paper, doesn’t it. However, you can do a bit of stochastics and figure out that Cultivate actually does the exact same thing for you in most situations, except sooner and more consistently. Since it’ll often come down to a decision between the two, Cultivate clearly wins out.

Crucible of Fire: 3.5

What’s good? Big dragons! What’s better? Bigger dragons! It’s a bit of an investment for little instant return value, but this deck features a variety of lizards at any cost and size, so its buff isn’t to underestimate. Since most of DotP14’s noncreature permanents suck, there is about zero chance that this will get removed, too.

Archwing Dragon: 3.0

At that stage of the game, you are usually looking for stalling tools, rather than a four-point burn to your opponent’s face from which you have to tear off the bandage each turn with another four mana. Since most of the removal in DotP14 is instant speed (cough Dick Blade cough Zombies OP unconvincing cough) its sorcery-dodging ability will rarely be relevant. If DotP works as intended, it could have some decent synergy with Sneak Attack. A two-card combo for something that you should get for the same price already (a 4/4 flier) which relies on two one-ofs. Why am I not convinced.

Sneak Attack: 3.0

So, anything you want, with haste for free, for but one mana, and all you have to do is make its swing count? Sounds awesome, right? It certainly can be; Since it’s not released yet, there’s no way to know. Make sure to check here for when its code is released.

Gorger Wurm: 3.0

Maybe it’s a 5/5 for five mana. Maybe that’s enough and I’m too hard to please. Still, it gets almost no return value from devouring things, so you might as well be playing things that do.

Torrent of Fire: 2.5

It’s basically Soul’s Fire, except in suck. There’s really no reason why you should run this, especially with room for Soul’s Fire still left. If you can get a big enough dude to stick that this will be worth the mana at sorcery speed, you probably don’t need it anyway.

Broodmate Dragon: 3.5

8/8, split across two bodies to make it harder to remove, benefits double from Crucible of Fire, bounce only makes it stronger, this card is really good for only six mana and as a possible turn four play with a Shaman.

Dragon Broodmother: 4.0

Provides both worthy devourers and the food they need. It also triggers on each upkeep, so at the very least you’ll get one token out of it that’ll be ready to attack once its sister hatches. It’s very red though, don’t forget about its triple cost.

Dragonlair Spider: 4.0

Almost the same as Dragon Broodmother, anything your opponent does will only feed your future plays. Not to mention that a 5/6 reach is also quite decent. Run or regret.

Flameblast Dragon: 4.5

It’s technically a Blaze Dragon, but don’t tell anyone. If this ever gets to attack, it can easily win the game on its own. At the very least, you’ll be able to blast any flying blocker for five damage and swing through uncontested, where it’ll inflict serious damage as well. Due to one of Magic’s many convoluted wording quirks, you determining X and paying the mana happens instantenously as the ability resolves, meaning that your opponent won’t be able to force you to pay mana for nothing. It can also target and kill Illusions for free with the same logic.

Igneous Pouncer/Valley Rannet: 2.5

Overcosted creatures meant to be cycled for their respective colours. Some might say that their thinning alone makes them worth it, but if that’s what you want, run more fetchlands instead. If there was a Forest/Swamp version or one with more toughness, maybe I’d consider them, but inter se they do too little.

Predator Dragon: 4.0

Somehow, I overlooked this during initial tests. Feed it two goblins and you’ve got an 8/8 flier coming in without warning. Add in another for an instant two-turn clock. This goes perfectly to show how much difference there can be between 1 and 2 in Magic. Don’t sac your entire board to it unless it’s worth it, though. (i.e. opponent is tapped out and can be killed thus.) Even when hunger is your only thought and destruction your entire tactic as is so often the case with Jund decks, there is something like overkill, which you’ll see when your opponent calmly doomblades the thing that just ate your entire board.

Volcanic Dragon: 2.5

Strong in Sealed, crap in constructed. You should be able to cast both Predator Dragon and Broodmate Dragon by the time you hit six mana, so this pales in comparison.

Dragon Roost: 3.5

It makes dragons, consistently, without cards. In other words, use if you care for winning the game in the long run. Keep in mind however that such strategy would hardly excite a cubicle’s worth of accountants. Where’s the fun? I hate this card with every fiber of my being. It’s slow, costly, boring, and being a valid strategy it doesn’t seem to fit into a deck whose strategy consists mostly of prayers. Still, with two of them, I must advise towards playing them.

Sangrite Surge: 2.0

Yes Double Strike is powerful. Yes this pumps to make it worth it. It’s also really expensive and a sorcery, so any chump will stop it from happening altogether.

Karrthus, Tyrant of Jund: 3.0

Only really gamechanging in the mirror match, but about as tough as a Predator Dragon with two Goblins included in its prize plus a lot of other goodies. You can also use him for pseudo-vigilance for all of your dragons, in case you really need defense.

Form of the Dragon: 4.0

Let’s face it, this is a casual deck. That in mind, what could be more fun to use than a card which not only makes dragons but makes you into one? There are few fliers in the game as is, so many decks will have trouble bypassing your defenses and getting in those five damage that must be dealt in a single turn, especially once you survive the first turn and begin blasting their fliers into oblivion. It requires care to use, but it could only be more awesome if it was on fire and played rock on a bass guitar that is also on fire. I suppose you’ll have to settle with it burninating the entire enemy board instead.

Kilnmouth Dragon: 4.0

Yes, Amplify is a rather weak mechanic since Wizards seems to insist on putting it on guys that are on the high end of their tribe’s ladder. This also has Amplify 3. And if you Amplify it even once, you get an 8/8 flier which can Lightning Bolt something every single turn. I’ll let you figure out by yourself what happens if you have more dragons on hand.

Penumbra Wurm: 3.0

Doesn’t fly, isn’t a dragon, costs much. Do not want, not in comparison to all the other expensive bombs.

Hellkite Overlord: 3.5

This will gladly exterminate your opponent by itself if you ever live to cast it and have it swing. Since you should have plenty of Mountains in play by that time, it can two-hit KO an opponent ending the game on the turn after it is cast. If you’re looking for a bomb about as powerful as tactical nuke, this is it. That being said… there are so many other things that are more worth the mana. Since this deck is so rich on high-cost, some just don’t cut it. This is unfortunately one of them, being too costly for its effect. If you want, you can switch out Karrthus for this; They are about equal. This has more potential to win the game by itself, but Karrthus is much safer, especially with the untap trick.

19 replies to this post
  1. Great guide overall, I just would probably rate Dragon Roost higher and Form of the Dragon lower.

    For Dragon Roost, most decks have no answer for a new dragon ever turn, and while it doesn’t do anything on turn 6 it does more on turn 7 than Form of the Dragon does.

    FOTD is good, but almost every deck relies on flying finishers. Plus if it gets destroyed (unlikely), you will be left at 5 life!

    Also Penumbra and Broodmate are both hilarious when someone uses Fiend Hunter on them, then something *happens* to fiend hunter.

    • See haters? Wing himself likes my guides! You can stop telling me I suck now!

      Ah, anyway. Yeah, some of those ratings were influenced with fun value in mind. Face it, what’s more fun? Getting a dragon each turn if the game gums up hard, or TURNING INTO A FUCKING DRAGON? Since this is a highly casual deck, I can be forgiven. Still, looking back on it, the ratings are probably more like 3.0-3.5 and 4.0 respectively.

      Did I mention how I tossed away a game during testing? I was facing Avacyn and greedily triggered one of the +1/+1 guys in a 2-for-1, making his angel a 5/6. If that hadn’t happened, Form of the Dragon would’ve won it for me.

      Anyway. I can totally see that;
      “You’re coming with me, young dragon!”

      “Clarence! (Yes, the dragon’s name is Clarence. Deal with it, yo.) Oh, you little.” RAWRGHR! *nom* “You’re free, honey! Wait, who’s that dragon?”

      “Uh… it’s complicated. Oh for the love of Norn, someone bounce her.”

      • Form of the Dragon is still pretty awesome, basically shutting down 4/10 decks =) might take out my optional card for Dragon Roost now you mention it. I seem to live and get my lands only to fail at drawing cards. 17 land with only 2 creatures! and only 23 land in the deck…
        Soul’s Fire sucks balls but has a nice ring to it. Probably better with Chandra tbh.
        You almost put exactly what I sent you by email Toraka lol only 2 cards swapped around. (did you read it yet)

      • Well, I more or less came up with the same build as you, plus you have a tendency to be right about your points. The only thing that differed before I equalised with your build was the Predator Dragons, which I sort of overlooked.

        I think Soul’s Fire is not terrible, especially with the lack of other decent burn in the deck. Even without any big things, it can still be an instant Banefire. Considering that most big things aren’t likely to come out until your big things do, 2 damage can easily be enough.

      • It’s not terrible but quite easily prevented and if it’s on a big guy then that just sucks even more. I started off with 4 then realising their value dropping and maybe consider just 1 but for now 0. Turn 3 you can cast it for 1 damage (whoop) which is when you’ll want a ton of your other 3 drops so it sticks around for too long and probably not even being cast before you die. I tried using them as removal when I played it as G/R and ended up not being able to remove anything. Sure it can burn to the face but if you have anything big enough to do so it’s probably sticking around long enough to win or play something stronger, the other 7 removal included work better for the same CMC. I guess its biggest + side is that it’s easy mana restriction, oh and its instant speed.

        As high costed as it is Sangrite Surge may be overlooked too, might keep just one actually.
        Annoyingly sits on that 6 mana spot which most dragons cost SO I shall compare it to Predator Dragon, one of the better dragons.

        Sangrite Surge:
        6 damage by itself + an extra on whatever creature it’s on. Requires a creature. One time sorcery use.
        Predator Dragon:
        4/4 body alone. Requires sac’ing creatures for extra damage. Stays until removed/dies. Synergy with other cards.
        (obviously you know all this)

        I’d say they’re actually pretty equal and you’re probably going to be damaging to their face the turn they’re played unless you use the dragon for defending which will probably get removed anyway. After all sangrite is believed to be concentrated dragon’s breath.

      • That’s why you swing in with your big guy and respond to removal. Duh!
        In all seriousness though, yeah, it’ll come down to extensive playtesting to see what number is the right amount. I’m sort of reminded of Farhaven Elf, except I’m rooting for it now.

        I personally consider a Predator Dragon to be a stronger play than Sangrite Surge. Trample is nearly entirely absent in this deck save for guys where a Surge would be just impolite, so if there’s even one chump, its entire damage potential whiffs. Assuming that you cast it onto a 2/2, it can potentially do 8 additional damage, but… well, it can be chumped. Dragons have additional potential, of course, but they too need to have their way cleared.

        To make things as even as possible, say the Predator Dragon omnomnoms a Kuldotha Rebirth. Like Surge, it can deal 8 additional damage prepared at sorcery speed in main 1 and swinging in in combat. However, it’s automatically evasive, and a well-timed removal will only singe off the additional damage potential (which the Goblins it nommed did NOT have) instead of taking the entire creature with it. In other words, if you have a Broodmate without token and are facing ground blockers so that your Goblins are useless, Predator Dragon will still allow you to bring through 4 damage from the Broodmate even if it gets removed, whereas the Surge will completely vanish.

        Yeah, I guess it’s not so different after all. However, whereas Surge profits from bigger guys, the Dragon will profit from any Crucibles you have out and, well, it sticks around. All in all, it’s a matter of gibbon take.

        Still, there’s one argument towards Predator Dragon. It’s a dragon. Dragons are fucking awesome. Why are you even playing this deck if you’re gonna be a sissy and only make your guys into pseudodragons instead of summoning real ones like a man?

        Now watch as people will call me defensive and childish again…

      • Predator Dragon is absolutely brutal. Sangrite Surge can do lots of damage BUT it gives you no battlefield presence and puts you down lower if you get hit with removal. I would have preferred Armed//Dangerous.

      • Haha I know, I know, but that’s why you use it on something when you can get the damage in which isn’t so bad seeing as everyone swings you and destroys you so fast lol. It usually drops my opponent to 1-5 life which is satisfying enough even if losing after, I don’t care it felt good! Turn 3 Cultivate, 4 Hatchling (omnomnom), 5 Sangrite can be pretty nasty for a turn 5 (possible win too). 1 Is probably a safe call.

        I’m actually disliking cards like Broodmother Dragon and Dragonlair Spider. If they live then sure they’re great but if they live then so would something else, probably. I dunno I’m probably harder to please than you now but I usually find myself ending up with just 1 or 2 1/1 tokens or a 3/3 or 5/5 with another summoning sickness when you could just play 2 4/4’s with Broodmate down for virtually the same cost and be able to attack with both whom I also don’t care too much if they’re removed.
        Dragon’s ARE awesome, the deck, not so awesome.

        After being forced into 2HG it’s actually not a bad deck for 2HG, pairs pretty well with zombies. Zombies and Dimir were actually a pretty good pair together so far, very controlling.

        Arr you changed Dragon Roost, I was about to say don’t you kind of want to be alive and kicking as long as possible as you’re most likely not going to win early on.

  2. Good guide, This is one deck that has been giving me a lot of trouble balancing early and mid game with the bombs that you have to have to win, I suppose it’s simply the nature of the deck itself, but your guide gave me some new things to think about, so hopefully I can rebuild and have better results.

  3. i found that souls fire doesnt work if you pick a dragon against one of the protection from dragon angels. where as torrent of fire does. I know there are other ways to deal with those cards but 1 more cant hurt right ;)

    • The point is, Soul’s Fire demands that you have a decent thing on the board, but at least it’s cheap. It’s rare to find a dragon with less P/T than its mana cost, either way.

      Besides, if your opponent has a Baneslayer out on the field already and you don’t have a Pulse ready, you’re royally fucked anyway.

  4. If you’re going to run Form of the Dragon, it seems like Torrent of Fire is a viable option. Even if it’s a one off type thing 8 damage in the next turn FotD is cast along with it’s 5 could really change things if you’re not getting your omnomming big hitters.

    Then again I could be missing something since I’m pretty new to all this, so I’m just speculating.

    • … who in the world would get to that dumb…

      You know what, fuck it, challenge accepted. It will lose all of its matches either way, so what could possibly go wrong.
      I’m keeping Form of the Dragon though. A girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.

      • I figured that much. Still, a true T3 author never backs down from a challenge, even if it involves going full retard. What’s the worst that could happen, facing Zombies and thus autolose every game?

Leave a Reply

Newest Articles

Disciple of the Ring
8 2182

Since I began playing Magic: the Gathering nearly 20 years ago, I've been drawn to blue/red decks. Maybe it's just that I've always favored instants...