True Commander might not be on Arena but you can get pretty close to it with Historic Brawl. This one-on-one format has you building a deck of 100 cards, including a commander, to put your deck-building skills to the test. Practically every card on Arena is fair game, letting you use cards from any expansion and release.

Your favorite Historic Brawl deck can help you rack up three wins and three random rewards from the Midweek Magic event. For the first two rewards, you will earn two Rare Individual cards, which in turn can be a random rare or mythic rare card from across all cards on Arena. You can get a duplicate copy, even if you already have four copies. If that happens you’ll earn the corresponding number of gems depending on the rarity of what you would have earned.

The final prize you can win is a Mystery Cosmetic pack, containing a wide range of prizes including special card styles, avatars, and even pets. The most common drop available is the card styles, such as extended artworks or set-specific variants.

It is completely free to join this and every other Midweek Magic event so there’s no reason to lose out on these rewards. The Historic Brawl event starts this Tuesday at 2 p.m. PT and will last until Thursday at 2 p.m. PT and can be accessed through both the Magic: The Gathering Arena app and the game client.

Historic Brawl Rules

This special format requires you to pick a single legendary creature or planeswalker to be your commander, limiting the deck to just the colors on the card you pick. For instance, in a Historic Brawl deck with Nissa, Who Shakes The World, the only cards you can include in your deck are green cards, artifacts, and lands (but if a land has a mana symbol other than green on it, you can’t use it). If you pick a commander like Golos, Tireless Pilgrim, a colorless artifact creature, you can include all five colors since it has an activated ability that costs one of each color of mana.

Once you have your commander, you have to fill the remaining 99 cards with any card from your collection across all sets released on Arena. You are restricted to using just one copy of any card, like regular Commander, with the exception of basic lands of course.

Historic Brawl Banned Cards

Agent of Treachery
Chalice of the Void
Demonic Tutor
Drannith Magistrate
Field of the Dead
Gideon’s Intervention
Lutri, the Spellchaser
Meddling Mage
Natural Order
Nexus of Fate
Oko, Thief of Crowns
Phyrexian Revoker
Pithing Needle
Runed Halo
Tainted Pact
Ugin, the Spirit Dragon

Historic Brawl Deck Idea

If you want a fairly straightforward Historic Brawl deck, a great choice might be Tatyova, Benthic Druid. This green/blue deck relies on getting your commander out early and then ramping up as many lands as you can since Tatyova turns your land drops into card draw and life gain.

Once you hit a critical mass of lands, you can cast practically any card in your deck, and with cards like Scute Swarm, your land drops also generate creatures for you. Generally, you don’t care too much if Tatyova gets destroyed a few times either since you’ll likely have plenty of mana to cast her over and over again.

Key cards for the deck include Cultivator Colossus, Ancient Greenwarden, and Crucible of Worlds, helping you draw plenty of cards, double up on triggers, and replay lands from your graveyard. From there all you need are plenty of cards that search for more lands and those with landfall triggers.

Kyle Winkler (he/him) is a teacher and fiction writer. While he was pre-teen when Magic: The Gathering was released, he didn’t start playing until recently. He’s the author of the cosmic horror novella (The Nothing That Is), a collection of short stories (OH PAIN), and a novel (Boris Says the Words). His favorite card is a toss up between Crypt Rats and Oubliette.

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