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Ugin’s Insight 4 – Nicol Bolas EDH Deck

Hello readers welcome back to the fourth installment of Ugin’s Insight! This is the new article series that features YOU and YOUR EDH deck in an interview style format. If you would like to have your deck featured on Ugin’s Insight, it’s easy! Simply go to the MagicEDH.com EDH Deck Interview Page and fill out the form.

Happy Sunday everyone. Published this just in the nick-of-time. Walking Dead is about to come on and that’s when the laptop gets put away for the night. Just a reminder that this article series is scheduled for release every Sunday, but if I get time, I may spit another one out sometime during the week. Submissions are chosen at random with a d20, and I hope to eventually publish a deck interview with just about everyone that submits the form and shows interest. Now then. Let’s get started!

Nicol Bolas EDH Deck by Netherknight

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About Netherknight: Today’s article features an interview with Thomas, also known as Netherknight on the MTGSalvation.com Forums. In this issue of Ugin’s Insight, Netherknight will be introducing us to his Nicol Bolas Commander Deck. Although he is originally from the United Kingdom, Thomas now lives in Kortrijk, Belgium and has been playing Magic the Gathering™ for about five years. He states that his decks tend to gravitate towards playing black but he still considers himself more of a Blue/Red guy so Grixis is a great combination for him. His other EDH decks include mono-black Oona, Queen of the Fae and Geist of Saint Traft Voltron. He does not play Modern anymore, even though he does have a modern legal black/white token deck.

About the Deck: The name of this deck is Nicol Bolas, Age of Dragons. Netherknight has been playing this deck for a about three years. This commander brew is not really built around the Elder Dragon Legend, but he does come in handy from time-to-time. When Thomas shuffles up his Nicol Bolas deck his playgroup knows that they should switch to a more powerful or competitive deck.

Here is a few more insightful facts about the deck:

  • This deck is designed for Multiplayer Commander games
  • Follows the Normal EDH Rules Committee Banlist
  • Built to be Semi-Competitive
  • Netherknight’s Nicol Bolas Deck is an Aggro deck

Before we begin the interview, let’s take a look at the Nicol Bolas EDH Decklist!

Nicol Bolas Age of Dragons EDH Deck

Commander (1)
Accelerators (8)
Card Advantage (8)
Clone and Steal (9)
Control and Removal (9)
Dragon Tribal (15)
Protection (5)
Offense (12)
Utility (2)
Other Lands (24)
Snow Basics (7)

Nicol Bolas EDH Deck Interview with Netherknight

Nicol Bolas EDH Deck

MTGCasualPlay.com: Why did you choose this commander?

Netherknight: From a flavour standpoint Nicol Bolas is a great general to build around and his ability is very effective. (Plus who hasn’t thought about running one of the original Elder Dragons whereupon this format was built.)

MTGCasualPlay.com: Give us a Brief History of this deck and how it came about.

Netherknight: It used to be a Scion of the Ur-Dragon but that ended up just plain Goodstuff which wasn’t very fun to pilot. So I made the decision to remove two colors.
At the time my deck was know as my Nicol Bolas deck because I loved Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker. This made it a logical choice to go towards Him as my commander. This helped add flavour to the deck and since then it has been much more fun to pilot.

MTGCasualPlay.com: What are your Win Conditions?

Netherknight: Your primary win condition is attacking with your dragons which should be enough to kill the table eventually. In a few rare cases you should attack with Bolas himself to get that commander damage through but you should really only rely on that when someone is playing a lifegain deck or needs to die in 3 turns.

I’ve only had a few games where I had to fall back on general damage to kill them. In the other cases Bolas serves to discard their hand and make sure they can’t do much.

MTGCasualPlay.com: Are there any specific strategies when playing the deck?

Netherknight: It’s a dragon deck, that means that most if not all of the aggro will happen in the mid to late game. To combat the slow start there are cards which help protect you in the beginning or to make sure you get your mana.

If your playgroup knows you they will paint a small target on your head from the get go. So politics wise the best thing to do in the early game is manipulate them to attack someone else. (That means not playing things like Dragonmaster Outcast on turn one)

Even if it fails and they attack you in the first few turns, you will be more than able to get back at them in the mid game.

MTGCasualPlay.com: What are some of the deck’s strengths?

Netherknight: This deck is filled with flying creatures so and matchup where your opponents don’t have anything to combat flying will be a very easy win on your end.

MTGCasualPlay.com: What are some of the Weaknesses of the Deck?

Netherknight: I find that, when paired with a quick voltron deck, you will have a hard time getting up and running before they kill you. (Think of Rafiq of the Many or Uril, the Miststalker)

Otherwise Enchantments are a big problem for Grixis decks in general and Crux of Fate will be a big problem.

MTGCasualPlay.com: What are some of the more Powerful cards or interactions of the deck?

Netherknight: Dragon Tempest, Scourge of Valkas, Soul’s Fire & Sarkhan the Mad all make sure that when Bolas land, he will make players discard their hands.

Cards like Bladewing the Risen, Keiga, the Tide Star & Kokusho, the Evening Star work very well paired with Flameshadow Conjuring.

MTGCasualPlay.com: Are there any Unique or Underrated cards that you play in this deck?

Netherknight: I like running some less seen cards in addition the powerful cards. Playing something like Darkness will surprise people because they wont expect an effect like that outside of green.

Also I really like playing with Artificial Evolution to save myself from dragon hate, making Bitterblossom sprout dragons or just plain messing with other peoples tribal effects.

MTGCasualPlay.com: Do you have a Wish List of Cards that you would like to add?

Netherknight: Well I’m foiling out this deck and the only foils I’m missing are Cavern of Souls and Scalding Tarn so those would be great to have in foil.

Otherwise I would love to have the original duals for this deck (Volcanic Island, Badlands & Underground Sea)

MTGCasualPlay.com: Are there cards missing because they didn’t work or were too Powerful? What happened?

Netherknight: I’m not running Balefire Dragon anymore because it would get a massive groan from the table and felt too powerful for my playgroup.

MTGCasualPlay.com: Why would I want to play this deck?

Netherknight: If you like playing with dragons in non-traditional colours then this deck is a fun deck to play.

Otherwise it’s a relatively simple deck that gets better the more you play with it. I like to think the deck rewards those that spend time getting to know it.

MTGCasualPlay.com: Thank you for taking the time to tell us about your EDH Deck. Is there anything else you would like to include before we wrap things up?

Netherknight: I wrote a primer on Mtgsalvation.com about this deck:

Nicol Bolas, Age of Dragons on MTGSalvation.com

So have a look if you’re interested.


In addition to the MTGSalvation.com link above, Neverknight also has pictures of his EDH deck on imgur. 98/100 of the cards are now foil! Check it out here:

Nicol Bolas Foil EDH Deck on imgur

If YOU would like us to feature YOUR deck in a future Ugin’s Insight article please visit the MagicEDH.com EDH Deck Interview Page

On to the next!

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