I’m glad I put competitive Limited on the back burner in the last several months, because I don’t know that I’d be a good fit for this new draft format. It’s a little like Avacyn Restored, but without Mist Raven and Seraph of Dawn, which both proved to be fairly oppressive at common. I did, however, get to Group Game Draft the set, and it made me giggle, which is a pretty high bar. And I did manage to get off the most ridiculous combination in a release Sealed event, when I used Mnemonic Wall and Rescue from the Underworld (a contender the most flavorful card in the set) to infinitely reanimate my graveyard. I mean, sure it wasn’t the fastest lock, but it provided a relatively overwhelming amount of card advantage. And then, a day or two later, someone pointed out that Rescue is supposed to exile on resolution. I lived the dream! Unfortunately it’s not a thing.


It would have been an amazing thing.


But I digress! This week I am going to again go over some of the additions that Theros has brought to my EDH decks, and what cards I was looking at but didn’t quite make the cut.


Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre

There weren’t a ton of additions for Ulamog, obviously, since there are a grand total of 13 colorless cards in the set, and most of them are Limited fodder (I am looking at you, Anvilwrought Raptor). But there were four that stood out to me enough to consider. First, the two I considered but left by the wayside. Witches’ Eye seemed to have promise, but the deck doesn’t run enough creatures to make me feel really comfortable going in on a piece of equipment that doesn’t ramp me or draw cards. Similarly, I considered Akroan Horse, because I love the flavor, but the reasons I added it to Thalia, Guardian of Thraben (which will be explained below) made me think it wouldn’t be a great fit. Plus, spamming people with tokens seems like it would make Annihilator less effective, and I am not a huge fan of that. That left me with the big two: Pandora’s Box and the Colossus of Rhodes. I mean, Pyxis of Pandemonium and Colossus of Akros! How could I ever make such a mistake?

Anyway, I like the Box because Ulamog runs literally one non-permanent card in the entire 99, All is Dust, and those seem like good odds. Also, the things I get out of there are probably going to be bigger than my opponents’, and those work together to make the effect seem much less symmetrical. The Colossus was a bit more obvious. That card is huge. Now, Ulamog is a deck that gets to ten mana fairly quickly, so casting it and then monstering it doesn’t seem outside of the realm of possibility. And once I do, I have an indestructible 20/20 that’s not Marit Lage. So, good times!


Thalia, Guardian of Thraben

It’s not surprising that my tri-tribal deck would find some cards to include in this set (the three tribes, if you care, are Humans, Angels, and Soldiers, roughly in that order).  I debated my inclusions for a while, but I kept running into Heroic abilities that the deck has no way to trigger, and I ran into a scarcity issue when considering adding in Heliod, God of the Sun. I know I’ve been down on Heliod when compared to Mobilization, but three things won me over. First, they cost the same when Thalia is on the board, and Thalia is always on the board. Second, indestructible is a keyword and I like using Austere Command in that deck. And third and finally, that extra point of power is relevant in a weenie deck.

I ended up adding four cards. The weakest by far is Evangel of Heliod, but I figure that it’s still worth giving a chance to a card that’s going to be giving me at least three bodies. Soldier of the Pantheon is a little underwhelming, sure, but it’s a target for Ranger of Eos and that card does some heavy lifting in the deck. The Spear of Heliod is both a rattler and an anthem effect, and the deck likes both of those things. And finally there is the aforementioned Akroan Horse. What brought me around on that rickety ruse is that even if most of my opponents are getting the same tokens I have, I am more likely to have the anthem effect to make mine win in combat. I like it, although I fear it will bite me if I run into any Homeward Paths.


Maelstrom Wanderer

Finally, we come to the last (but not least) of my decks. That’s a bit of a lie, as I have about 14 decks total right now and between this, last, and next week you’ll only really be hearing me talk about half of them. Still, this is the last interesting one, since who wants to hear me talk about this set not having Slivers or Goblins, to use two examples. But the Wanderer has been a deck that makes me conflicted for a while now. I made it as a silly little ramp deck, in the hopes that I’d always have something to do, and at some point it warped into something truly weird: good. For a while I played a bit more coy about its power level because I desperately wanted it not to be true, but I’ve given into the intoxication now, and I am leaning into the curve.

It’s a long way to go to say that I added in Prophet of Kruphix. I know, I hate that card with a passion, but it seems SO GOOD in the deck. I also added in Polis Crusher, since the deck should have the mana to monster him fairly reliably. And my third major addition was Xenagos, the Reveler. I’d probably have put Xenagos into any red/green decks that I had, but at the moment Wanderer is it (and I only have one copy of the goat with a spark inside).  So it’s a perfect fit. And I’d be lying to say that his effects don’t fit the deck well. They absolutely do. Goatboy is baa-baa-bonkers, and I am looking forward to doing degenerate things with him.


Anyway, that’s it for this week on Command of Etiquette. Tune in next week, in which I’ll go through my Theros-inspired recreation of a previously dismantled Sedris, the Traitor King Commander deck. Shockingly, the Whip of Erebos is good in that one! See you then!

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