Mirrodin Block deck- Death Cloud



Recently, my friends and I have been preparing for this up and coming Mirrodin Block tournaments. Of course they were all excited, not only because they have been working really hard on their decks and researching for the tournament, but they got me to not only join magic again full heartedly, but they even got me to play with new cards. I took their suggestion of building a block deck. I had overheard one of my friends talk about a particular deck that he thought was cool, Death Cloud, so I decided to check it out for myself. This card reminds me of a controlable pox, which is super cool. I have been fiddling around with the deck a little, but no one online seems to have any deck lists, nor are any articles coming out specifically addressing what players using mono-black should do for the block. So I come to you all for suggestions and comments in order to at least make the deck playable. Here is my current decklist I am playing with.

4x Death Cloud
4x Plunge into Darkness
4x Night's Whisper
4x Echoing Decay
4x Barter in Blood
4x Shattered Dreams

4x Solemn Simulacrum
4x Chittering Rats
4x Blind Creeper
4x Disciple of the Vault

4x Chrome Mox

4x Cloudpost
2x Blinkmoth Nexus
10x Swamp

4x Lightning Coils

The basic goal of the deck is to gain a little bit more life than the opponent, then death cloud for enough to ensure your victory, by either killing them or crippling them.
The card that specifically combos with Death Cloud is Plunge into Darkness. When I am ready to go for the combo, at the end of my opponent's turn I Plunge all my creatures, gaining three life for each, and if needed pay to look for the Cloud. Then with the life advantage I Death Cloud on my turn.
Night's Whisper provides the draw mid or early game to give me more to work with, but still not limiting me from working with it when I do it mid game, with its lower cost.
The deck definitely has the advantage late in the game with the disruptive power of death cloud, but early on, it suffers greatly to survive and compete with other decks. So I threw in minor disruption to solve my problem. Barter in Blood just eats babies in this deck, since either I wouldn't have any creatures out to lose, or the creatures I had were expendable, or I gain benefits from killing my own creature. Also two creatures is a heafty price to pay early on, or even later on when you lack creatures due to previous Barters and what not. It also can get you out of tight spots against things like Tooth and Nail. Echoing Decay offers a solution to minor annoyances, or even eliminates a potential threat of multiples of the same creature using a devasting ability (i.e. Disciple of the Vault).
Shattered Dreams is, in my opinion, the best discard card in this block, which is sad. But it does have use, since everybody will be playing with some kind of artifact.
A card I see in almost every deck in the block, and for good reason, is Solemn Simulacrum. Some of my friends criticize my land count, but I feel that Solemn compensates for the few amounts of lands. It speeds me up from early game to mid game performance, depending on how soon I can play it. The thing that I believe my deck has over others, as far as Solemn goes, is the fact that I can use his second ability when ever I pretty much choose to. With loads of cards that require me to sacrifice permants or creatures, there are plenty of ways to kill him. And in late game, Death clouding my Solemn gives me a card more than they have to start over with, or with Plunge, giving me another potential mana producer to boost the next turns Cloud. Also he can be used as an attacker or blocker for an advantageous situation.
Chittering rats, though I was skeptical at first, seems to also give me the advantage in multiple ways. It stalls their draw for a turn, which gives me a card advantage, and an attacker. And if they don't have a land to play in their hand already, I get a land advantage also.
Blind Creeper is just a big bully card. 3/3 for two just helps me get their life lower than mine.
Disciple is a recent addition. First of all it, it is an cheap creature, allowing me to attack earlier, or play more spells with it later on. Its ability also adds a defensive aspect if they try to take out my stuff, and a offensive aspect as I take out my own, or theirs. It seems to prove effective, and at the very least it makes raffinity think twice about sacrificing everything.
Chrome Mox is just a must in this deck. After I Death Cloud it provides me with the mana advantage, also it speeds up my play by so much. I am thinking about the talismans, but I am not sure I want to take away from playing creatures early on for more mana later.
Cloudpost is just an awesome mana bumper, especially playing against 12 post. It just adds to Death Cloud since it doesn't need black mana for X.
Blinkmoth Nexus just allows me an extra creature to attack with, and a free creature after I Death Cloud.
Swamp Duh.
Lightning Coils is awesome especially after I Death Cloud. Five 3/1 hasters attacking the turn after there are basically no blockers in sight.
There are a few other cards I am considering but nothing I want to mention here. Any comments would be appreciated.


The Tentacled One
Heh, you should change your signature now...

Anyway, I believe you've already heard me comment on your deck...EDIT: yeah, you were right, the rest of this comment didn't make any sense at all...