EDH Deck Time: Big Game Hunt

For some reason Chevill, Bane of Monsters reminded me of Sir Hammerlock from Borderlands franchise, so why not build a deck around that? This is a continuation on this.

I don’t think Hammerlock would actually be black, but don’t tell anyone. He is a hunter, but he has (at least in the beginning) naturalist motivations, as he is interested in conservation more than killing. It just so happens that these attempts don’t quite go as planned and these rare creatures just happen end up as trophies on his wall. Later on, the character is depicted more as a hunter, who is interested in learning about these exotic creatures. His method just happens to be to pay someone to kill them.

Chevill, Bane of Monsters

But what do we do with this? I’m just going to put in a bunch of cards represent things you would run into when working for Hammerlock. Not the prison sequence in 3, but he does have you go out and hunt many different and weird animals and creatures all over Pandora, somewhat in Elpis and finally all over the galaxy.

We have three different major types of cards I’ll include here (on top of lands, obviously):

  • the legendary creatures Hammerlock targets (I’ll try to emphasize legendary creatures when possible, and when not, rares and mythics, so pretty normal for EDH) – these are all non-humanoid
  • hunters, such as the Big Game Hunter – I don’t think there are many, but we’ll see
  • hunting techniques and tools – Rabid Bite is nice here from a certain point of view, but on the other hand, I don’t think Hammerlock goes out to bite things, even if he might have somewhat unorthodox methods at times

This is the list of targets from BL3:

  • Lavender Crawly – monstrous insect thingy, which breaks into smaller versions of itself
  • Skrakk – monstrous, roughly wolf-looking creature with wings
  • Antalope – a spiderant (four-legged insect like thing with a very strong carapace) with antlers
  • Phoenix – yes, that
  • Manvark – liek Crawly above, but has three stages with different human parts in each of them
  • Chupacabratch -ratches seem to be huge, hairless, cannibalistic rats with extra legs
  • Chonk Stomp – basically a T-Rex
  • Jabbermogwai – self-replicating cat-monkey creature
  • Blinding Banshee – a weird creature that was born out of other creatures merging together to form a sort of lizard-looking creature
  • Brood Mother – I don’t even know what to say any more

In the DLC2, in which he is a major character, we have the following:

  • Yeti – what it says on the tin
  • Kritchy – flying insectoid creature
  • Gmork – prime wolven, meaning these creatures have a wolf-like social structure (well, what wolves do in popular media), but to me they seem more like huskys, maybe, but sort of demonic huskys
  • Kukuwajack – another ratch
  • Kratch – hybrid of ratch and krich (another insectoid creature)

There’s more, but they often repeat similar themes, so I don’t think there’s much point in listing everything. Besides, more than 15 legendary creatures would make them feel less than legendary. These are supposed to be fairly rare (although for convenience you can find them easily enough on the maps, often fairly short distance from travel points). All in all, it doesn’t even matter very much what we do, as long as the creatures are weird enough. I guess that’s the common thread with all of these: if you would come across one in reality, you would not only be afraid, you’d also be weirded out by their appearance. There also seems to be quite a few insectoid creatures.

I’ll try to find a balance between playability and flavor. I won’t go completely useless, but I won’t just choose the best possible creatures either. I will also emphasize recursion, as these do respawn, although this is for playability reasons rather than in-game lore, so perhaps I should stay away from this thinking. We’ll see.

I guess the final factor is this: If Hammerlock and this particular creature existed in the same universe, would Hammerlock be interested in hunting it down? Where I do fail is that many of the creatures you hunt for Hammerlock aren’t necessarily that big. They are just very mobile. Let’s just skip that. Honestly, some of these creatures were chosen, because I just like them.

Here’s some monsters to hunt:

Giant AdephageArasta of the Endless WebGhalta, Primal HungerGoreclaw, Terror of Qal SismaWorldspine Wurm
Kogla, the Titan ApeMazirek, Kraul Death PriestSheoldred, Whispering OneThe Gitrog MonsterAvenger of Zendikar
Biogenic OozeGreenwarden of MurasaHexdrinkerLiege of the TangleLord of Extinction
Massacre WurmVorapedeWoodland BellowerAnt QueenBane of Progress
Ravenous Chupacabra

Well, many of these require quite a bit of mana, but gladly we have ramp and land tutoring, which is flavored in terms of discovery and exploration. Let’s focus on those.

Explorer’s ScopeAinok GuideBorderland RangerFarseekFar Wanderings
Frontier GuideJourney of DiscoveryKhalni Heart ExpeditionRealms UnchartedSatyr Wayfinder
Seek the WildsSylvan RangerVeteran Explorer

The problem here is that these mostly just add consistency, not speed.

Moving on to more hunting techniques and hunters. I’m putting some cards here which aren’t necessarily the most flavorful, but they are very good specifically with Chevill. Not that they are very good in a black deck in general, as there are many much more flexible black removal cards, but again, let’s not talk about that too much.

Big Game HunterAmbuscadeAggressive InstinctRabid BiteClear Shot
Ram ThroughLurking DeadeyeBrightwood TrackerDeadeye TrackerMwonvuli Beast Tracker
Hunter’s ProwessHunter’s InsightSavvy HunterTireless TrackerUlvenwald Tracker
Assassin’s TrophyGo for the ThroatUltimate PriceEasy PreyEyeblight’s Ending

Finally, the deck is quite underpowered, so I’ll just put some card draw to give it something to do. Gladly, you can still do this somewhat flavorfully.

Beast WhispererBushmeat PoacherGreater GoodIrresistable PreyMomentous Fall

That should leave you with room for 40 lands. Emphasize green over black a little bit and you should be fine. I guess I should have tried to fit Aurelia and Winny in there in some form.

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