Hello everyone, and welcome back to The Arcane Sanctum. Since starting this page I have spoken about many different types of decks, but all of them have been in non-EDH formats (even the casual decks). I have been wanting to write about this format for awhile, and I want to learn more about it. To learn from that let’s discuss my history with this format.
About 5 years ago I finally built my first EDH deck with Kaalia. The fact I could cheat big creatures into play, and have them attacking, was very appealing. I was even taking the deck to play after my round of Standard was over (which caused judges to do a double take as they walked by). The store I attended regularly had EDH run before, in-between rounds, and well after their weekend Standard tournaments were over. Sometimes the pods would be with 4 players, sometimes 6, and sometimes even with the Planechase planar cards as well (those were a blast).
Unfortunately things with that group came to an end, and I didn’t know many people into EDH. I started peeling off some cards, and put getting back into it on the back burning. I had built a second deck, Grand Arbiter Augustin IV, however when I was moving cards I kept a few from that deck to eventually build Legacy Miracles (which happened about 4 years ago).
Fast forward to 2016, and the 4-color decks were released. For a moment I was really torn between the Atraxa and Breya decks. Both had callbacks to some of my favorite memories in Magic: the Scars of Mirrodin, and Shards of Alara blocks respectfully. After pouring over the out-of-the-box decklists there was one card that pulled me in the Superior direction:
“All it needs is a Sword of the Meek, and it’s go time” I thought to myself, and as I dug deeper there were other changes I wanted to make. I was also near completion of Modern Tezzerator (which is so much fun) which also utilizes the Thopter + Sword combo. From there I wanted to add more, but I didn’t want to get too crazy up front. As a matter of fact the 4-color releases are about 18 months old at this point, yet they still feel like strategies that could be further explored. With this in mind my deck feels a little typical for a build, with some issues that still need addressed. After watching countless videos on line, listening to shows like The Command Zone, and visiting EDHREC I have come up with this:
Breya, Etherium Shaper
Disciple of Bolas
Hanna, Ship’s Navigator
Master of Etherium
Padeem, Consul of Innovation
Sharuum the Hegemon
Daretti, Scrap Savant
Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas
Tezzeret the Seeker
Sensei’s Dvining Top
Spine of Ish Sah
Sword of the Meek
Revel in Riches
Storm the Vault
Thopter Spy Network
Swords to Plowshares
Whir of Invention
Open the Vaults
Trash for Treasure
Seat of the Synod
Spire of Industry
Temple of the False Gods
Vault of Whispers
How the deck works
I’m going to get straight to the point here: Combo, combo, combo.
…and that’s not all of them.
I’m not a combo player at heart, but seeing the potential not only in the format, but for this General opened my eyes quite a bit with what could be done (and done for fun).
With all of that said the deck could still win in traditional ways with all of the value that can be generated by the deck. Simply equipping a Cranial Plating to a big creature is often more than what another player may be able to handle. I’m sure through changes I could add more combos, or make the existing ones even better.
What could I add?
Cataclysmic Gearhulk may seem odd, but with a sac outlet I could get extra mana from the sacrificed artifacts, and then cast Open the Vaults to get them back to keep going. With Panharmonicon I can cast 2 instants from my year, or kill 2 creatures. Seems solid.
Honestly Phyrexian Rebirth may not cut it. One removal spell and my X/X horror is gone. Some of these options may be better, and even adding Merciless Eviction could also help vs Enchantments.
The deck does seem to be lacking in counter magic. Stoic Rebuttal fits the theme of the deck, and other counterspells like Absorb, and Undermine could also be in the deck as well.
I initially had these in, but then removed them. I should have left them in. Adding other non-ABUR dual lands would also help these out (looking at you Battle For Zendikar, and Amonkhet duals). The one thing I have noticed is that lands should be producing a color more often than not. Space is limited for utility colorless lands, and getting that crucial 4th color will help a lot.
Making the deck your own
One thing I have enjoyed about the format is your choice of build helps make the deck your own. As many of you know I play with the original printing of cards when possible, and I am slowly getting back into foils. With the Generals being foiled lately (see the 2016 & 2017 pre-constructed decks) I am slowly getting foils for EDH, starting with this deck. I did not want to use Beta basics for this deck so I started looking up Breya’s story, and found her background to be from Esper on the plane of Shards of Alara. So I chose these basic lands:
You can of course use what you wish, but her story takes her from Esper, to Grixis, and even Jund if I remember correctly. I wanted to highlight that in a way with the land choices.
Overall I have enjoyed the few times I have played EDH, and look forward to playing more. I have this, Edgar, and Kaalia completed for play. Right now Breya is my focus. Thanks for reading, and I hoped you liked my first dip into EDH articles. What changes or additions would you make? Leave your comments below, and don’t forget to follow me on Facebook & Twitter. Until next time…
TAP MORE MANA!!!