In today’s Legion’s Landing, Kristen looks at one of the new legendary creatures from Theros: Beyond Death and how she could be used in Commander: Siona, Captain of the Pyleas.

One of the latest cards to be revealed in Theros Beyond Death preview season is Siona, Captain of the Pyleas. Whilst she at first appears as innocuous and perfect for a more casual style deck, she actually hides a deeper and more explosive power. Let’s take a look at Siona, some Auras you might not know about, and how to really make her shine.

Siona, Captain of the Pyleas

Siona has two pretty good abilities for three mana. The first allows you to dig seven cards deep for an Aura. What excites me more than usual about this is the fact you can dig through seven cards; usually these dig effects grant you four or five cards of selection. With seven, she feels designed for Commander with its larger decks. The first thing to spring to mind might be the immediately good Auras like Eldrazi Conscription, Gift of Immortality, and Boar Umbra; but we have a great deal of effects worth pursuing outside the obvious.

Siona’s second ability creates a 1/1 White Human Soldier creature token whenever an aura is attached to a creature you control. At first glance, this looks like gravy—a reward for going into a somewhat ropey archetype in EDH. On closer inspection, it can be pretty easy to break wide open given you have access to the right cards. Let’s first look at the most obvious Combo ceiling for Siona, before digging deeper for some cool interactions.

Meet Me At the Crossroads

The most obvious way to pop off with Siona is to create Infinite soldier tokens. The easiest way to achieve this is Shielded by Faith. With Siona in play, this will trigger a Solider token to enter, and then you can attach the aura to it, rinse and repeat. Concordant Crossroads and Crashing Drawbridge can give these guys Haste and get in for damage the turn they come in, winning you the game in the absence of a bounce wrath or someone interacting with your combo. These creatures can still achieve a win without haste—simply play Altar of the Brood or Altar of Dementia for a mill win condition.

With such a deluge of tokens, you can also pop off with Genesis Wave to play most of your deck for free, sacrifice them to Ashnod’s Altar or Phyrexian Altar to generate big mana for Walking Ballista or another big-mana win, or use Blasting Station to take advantage of the untap part of the card. With Anointed Procession, Doubling Season, or Parallel Lives, you can use Rancor and Phyrexian Altar to make infinite tokens without needing Shielded by Faith, or loop Reins of the Vinesteed for the same effect.


Thankfully, we’re in two thirds of the better Enchantress colors available, so we don’t lack enablers. I really like the new God, Heliod, Sun-Crowned in this deck, as an alternative way to use our Walking Ballista. We have plenty of ways to assemble whatever way we want to combo off; between Enlightened Tutor, Idyllic Tutor, Worldly Tutor, Boonweaver Giant, and Eladamri’s Call we stand a very high chance of getting what we need.

We have ways to ramp, being based in Green; and we have lots of incidental card draw on cards like Verduran Enchantress, Mesa Enchantress, Satyr Wayfinder, Kor Spiritdancer, Sram, Senior Edificer and Enchantress’s Presence, and now we also get Setessan Champion too. It shouldn’t be a struggle to find at least half of one of the potential combos we have available. If we can’t, there are other ways we can take advantage of an army-in-a-can.

Sigarda’s Aid is also a card you could consider.

Wade into Battle

Sometimes, you won’t draw into the effects you need to assemble the easy combo win. Thankfully, we have a bunch of cool cards to take advantage of. Sigil of the Nayan Gods and Alpha Status both make our Captain arbitrarily big, and Alpha Authority means that she can abuse trample while being safe from removal.

There’s also the fact we’ll have a board of tokens that will get pretty wide, pretty quickly. Cathar’s Crusade is the obvious choice here, but don’t underestimate the strength of Lure effects. The eponymous card, Lure, is one, and you could also try Nemesis Mask, Roar of Challenge, or Seton’s Desire. Strapping on Venomous Fangs allows Siona to make short work of any number of blockers, and can sometimes be a one-sided wrath.

The obvious Auras are also good here, so don’t be afraid to look at a Voltron Plan B—Angelic Destiny, Eldrazi Conscription, Celestial Mantle, and Ancestral Mask.

Flickerform is an immediate stand out for a card to include, and whilst I would definitely test it out, and probably play it, I think pumping mana into it over and over is a trap, and takes you too far away from your gameplan, which should be to create a swarm of creatures.

The Lesser Travelled Path

The Professor pointed out Instill Energy as an underplayed card in his video with Emma Handy this week. It’s a card that could do some interesting things in our deck, but I’m not sure it’s the right kind of niche we’re looking for. Instead, let’s look further afield. While Bear Umbra and our Enchantress package are the all stars here, we can also look at cards like Sage’s Reverie, Keen Sense, Mentor of the Meek, and Pattern of Rebirth to supplement our consistency. Another older one-mana card is Nature’s Chosen. If we include a land like Gavony Township, being able to untap it for free is pretty strong.

Going nicher still, Conviction and Flickering Ward allow us to make as many tokens as we have White mana, with the latter offering some good protection; Felidar Umbra gives Totem Armor and Lifelink and doesn’t need to be recast to achieve the same effect. Druid’s Call might be worth considering if you’re going to force opponents to block your Commander—whether through cards that do so, or just the threat of Commander damage, as it can produce a nice scurry of squirrels. If you are wanting to go this route, Murder Investigation can send out a search party should your Commander be removed.

You should be making it hard for people to remove Siona, though, with access to a bunch of resilient auras. Shield of the Oversoul aside, Canopy Cover provides a shield from single target removal, and gives Siona an avenue to strike hard for Commander Damage. Gaea’s Embrace gives her the Trample she needs; and when combined with Alpha Authority, means she can likely swing with impunity, while achieving immunity from all but exile-based wraths as long as you hold up a single Green.


Selesnya has access to a lot of the best removal. Between Knight of Autumn, Sylvan Reclamation, Path to Exile, Generous Gift, and all of the good board wipes, you should be pretty good to go. Running an Aura-based build has its benefits, though. It’d be remiss not to mention cards like Darksteel Mutation and Temporal Isolation, especially when we can run Open the Armory to find them. Seal of Primordium and Seal of Cleansing are also recursive removal that often let us draw cards.

Going deeper, we have the tokens to play cards like Weight of Conscience, Gallows at Willow Hill, and Devout Chaplain. Combined with Nature’s Chosen, we can get some good value out of our Human army.


Redundancy is the name of the game here. Between our payoffs, token makers, tutors, ramp, and draw, we have many ways of achieving our goals. Resiliency is one of the strengths of building this deck—if we lose a piece or two, we have other ways to achieve the same route to victory. On top of that, we can also run some of the best recursion for our effects, like Sun Titan, Sevinne’s Reclamation, Open the Vaults, Retether, Replenish, Eternal Witness, and Road of Return.

I particularly like Road of Return here—Siona and Shielded by Faith need just one other piece to truly shine, and being able to pay four to get both to your hand (especially if Siona has been taxed out!) is a very strong play. Don’t forget, you have access to Sun Titan and Gift of Immortality, which can loop all on its own. Nomad Mythmaker is a cool one too, though I prefer an enters-the-battlefield effect to something I have to untap with.

In Closing

I’m pretty excited to try Siona. What started for me as a passing interest in an uncommon Commander that could helm a weaker style of deck (Auras) for more casual tables has quickly morphed into the potential for a pretty strong build. Her ability to enable so many combos is clear, and the flexibility of those combos is what makes her so good. You’ve got a lot of redundancy of effect in this deck, plus a lot of recursion, draw and tutoring, which is a fantastic base for a combo deck. Whether she’s strong enough for a Competitive EDH table is not clear, and I’d probably lean on her not being. For sure, with fast mana she could really hit the nut draw—but there are easier ways to achieve a similar style of win already, and I don’t think the deck has many ways to interact by staying within Selesnya. If in doubt, you can always just slam a Craterhoof Behemoth to close things out.

Either way, it’s probably a good time to pick up Concordant Crossroads if you don’t have one!

Kristen is a lover of both Limited and Commander, and can most often be found championing the Boros Legion when called upon to sit down and shuffle up. Based in the UK, she works as a software developer, and her love for the Legion is second only to her appreciation for Lord of the Rings and Mass Effect.

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