$50 Commander Deck – The Dimir Steal Everything

“Steal that Consecrated Sphinx… then your journey to the Dark Side will be complete!”

One of the most budget-friendly archetypes in Commander is the “thievery” deck. (I will definitely cover the Thievery archetype in a month or two in my Monday article series!) There are two big reasons why this is. First, you don’t have to spend your money loading your deck up with powerful creatures – you can let your opponents do it for you, and then take control of them! Second, because the deck is reactive in nature, it doesn’t have to be particularly fast – meaning you can load your mana base up cheaply by using lands which come into play tapped.

With this in mind, I have designed a $50 Thievery deck to share with you all. I call it, “The Dimir Steal Everything.” It uses the guild leader from Gatecrash, Lazav, Dimir Mastermind to steal your opponents’ creatures and spells… from everywhere! We’ll steal them from the battlefield! We’ll steal them from the graveyard! We’ll rip them right off the stack! We’ll flush them out of our opponents’ hands and libraries and make them our own! They have no secrets from the Dimir! Even if an opponent manages to get a brutal creature with hexproof or shroud onto the battlefield, then we’ll clone it and get our own copy!

Sadly, our budget won’t support the inclusion of the greatest theft card in the format, Bribery. This is a sacrifice we’re just going to have to make – though if you can get your hands on a copy, by all means throw it in the deck!

So, let’s empty our pockets for the Dimir!


The Dimir Steal Everything  
Lazav, Dimir Mastermind

Lands: 39
10 Swamp
Dimir Guildgate
Dimir Aqueduct
Jwar Isle Refuge
Salt Marsh
Frost Marsh
Terramorphic Expanse
Evolving Wilds
Bad River
Esper Panorama
Grixis Panorama
Vivid Creek
Vivid Marsh
Barren Moor
Lonely Sandbar
Polluted Mire
Remote Isle
Ghost Quarter
Tectonic Edge
Encroaching Wastes
Creatures: 20

Geth, Lord of the Vault
Cemetery Puca
Body Double
Dominating Licid
Evil Twin
Quicksilver Gargantuan
Mirko Vosk, Mind Drinker
Jace’s Archivist
Consuming Aberration
Diluvian Primordial
Sepulchral Primordial
Wrexial, the Risen Deep
Chainer, Dementia Master
Dark Hatchling
Fleshbag Marauder
Dimir House Guard
Rune-Scarred Demon
Avatar of Woe

Artifacts: 2
Mimic Vat
Grinning Totem

Enchantments: 16
Mind Control
Volition Reins
Steal Artifact
Control Magic
Corrupted Conscience
Dream Leash
Spirit Away
Take Possession
Animate Dead
Grave Betrayal
Dance of the Dead
Leyline of Anticipation
Sorceries: 12

Stolen Identity
Mind Grind
Whispering Madness
Beacon of Unrest
Ashen Powder
Rise From the Grave
Barter in Blood
Black Sun’s Zenith

Instants: 10
Dimir Charm
Doom Blade
Far // Away
Arcane Denial
Psychic Strike
Soul Manipulation
Dream Fracture

Using our standard calculation method (TCGPlayer optimizer through Heavily Played), this deck just barely squeaks under at $49.77. For the price, I think this is a very solid thievery deck.

You see that light on the horizon? That’s this deck’s dreams being crushed.

Looking over this decklist, you might have noticed the inclusion of Encroaching Wastes, and wonder what it’s doing there.  You are right to wonder – that card is terrible.  However, thievery decks have a problem, one I will expand more upon at a later date.  That problem?  Homeward Path exists.  Homeward Path wrecks ALL your plans – that creature you reanimated from your opponent’s graveyard?  Yeah, it’s now back under your opponent’s control.  Did you have a creature Mind Controlled?  Homeward Path taps to make that card now useless.  The creature goes back under the control of its owner, and you’re hosed.  So, we need means of dealing with Homeward Path – that means land destruction.  We can either devote spell slots to it or land slots to it, and since there are budget options available in the land slot, that’s what I’ve done.  So yeah, Encroaching Wastes is not a good card – but it’s a quarter and it kills Homeward Path.  If you can replace it with a Strip Mine or Wasteland, by all means do it – that’s the better card.  But, with Encroaching Wastes we have a card that kills Homeward Path in our budget.

As previously mentioned, once the budget allows, this deck really wants Bribery to pull one of your opponent’s best creatures right out of their library. Desertion would also be a great addition – if you can take control of your opponents’ creatures (or artifacts) when they’re on the stack, this slows down their game every time you have mana open. The third spell that comes to mind for this deck is Treachery, because it is a direct upgrade for Mind Control or Persuasion.

Ninja’s don’t come cheap. Who knew?

There were several Clone-type creatures I wanted for the deck but had to cut for budget reasons. Sakashima the Imposter, for example, is strictly better than Clone since he can bounce back to your hand. Sakashima’s Student is the same way, being a clone that can come into play at instant speed during the combat phase after blockers are declared. Vesuvan Doppelganger, though she costs one more mana than Clone, is also superior because she can choose a different creature to copy during your upkeep.

Coffin Queen and Dimir Doppelganger could be interesting additions to the deck, allowing you more options to steal from your opponents’ graveyards. I ended up cutting them both for budget concerns, though these creatures don’t just swap out for worse versions of themselves – you’d have to choose something specifically to cut in order to include them.


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