Welcome to my personal favorite EDH deck: Elsha artifact storm! While I was initially uninspired by Elsha's abilities at first glance, building and testing has quickly turned her into my favourite commander. I built the deck to be structured around quick mana ramp via artifacts, countering/controlling opponents' plays with countermagic, static effects and targeted removal, and then casting Elsha of the Infinite and storming off into a deck manipulation line leading to drawing the deck and deploying one of the deck's wincons. The deck maintains resiliency through its graveyard interaction in Buried Ruin, Academy Ruins and Elixir of Immortality and ability to create opportunities to safely storm off.

It is important to approach this deck with the appropriate mindset in order to get the best mileage out of Elsha. While the deck can explode very quickly, attempts to storm off while opponents have potential threats/counters ready or before sufficient protection and mana is available to you will result in setbacks which can really slow the deck down. Before casting Elsha of the Infinite, be sure to have at least 1 counter in hand or an alternative strategy to recover as having her countered or destroyed on the turn she is cast puts the deck on its heels. Control the board where necessary while leaving some available counters to protect the storm win, establish a mana base and protection via cards like Ghostly Prison or Pithing Needle if necessary, and strike when the moment is right. Sometimes this means a race to drawing the deck as quickly as possible, and sometimes it means being more strategic - everything depends on the matchup.
There are a number of lines to consider from the opening hand, which are:

  1. Elsha of the Infinite + Sensei's Divining Top + (Helm of Awakening or Etherium Sculptor) - This is the main board state to achieve in any game. With these in play, the deck can be drawn for free and any combination of the wincons detailed below can be executed. With Elsha as a piece of this combo in the command zone, the other two pieces can be gathered directly through cards like Fabricate, Enlightened Tutor, or Transmute Artifact with an existing artifact on board.

  2. 0-1 CMC mana rocks, 1-2 lands and Wheel of Fortune or Windfall - Players typically don't start games with a terrible hand, so wheeling turn 1 or 2 can be surprisingly disruptive and effective. And, starting with a hand full of cheap mana rocks, lands and wheels is beneficial since they can be played early and drawing a new hand of 7 bears no consequences while increasing the odds of drawing one or more of the deck's wincons, or at least increasing the odds of drawing one sooner.

  3. Karn, the Great Creator + Mycosynth Lattice - The classic lattice lock combo is in this deck not just for flavor with the artifact theme, but as a way to solidify the win. The thought process here is this: Karn, the Great Creator is an easy cast at 4 generic mana, can be flashed out by Elsha of the Infinite from the top of the deck, and immediately impacts the board by either fetching Mycosynth Lattice and assembling the lock, or by shutting off most opponents' artifacts, destroying opposing Mana Crypts or Mox Opals with its +1 ability and forcing opponents to spend their resources dealing with it rather than executing their own plans. I spent a lot of time Pondering which planeswalker to use in this slot, considering options like Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Tezzeret the Seeker and Nahiri, the Harbinger for their ability to draw cards and impact opponent's board states, but ultimately decided on Karn. While Tezzeret the Seeker can assemble the wincons like no other and Nahiri, the Harbinger can draw cards and deal with opponents' creatures and enchantments - the latter of which this deck has almost no way to deal with - Karn, the Great Creator seems to be the option that leads to the highest number of permutations of the deck that result in a win. The lattice lock combo can shut down the game early if achieved, or can be attempted once the deck is drawn to either guarantee the win or draw opponents' resources toward disrupting it so that other wincons can be deployed.

Before detailing the wincons, it is worth noting some smaller synergy pieces within the deck.

  • Elsha of the Infinite + Any fetchland - Fetchlands are even better than usual in this deck, as they can be cracked mid-storm to remove a top-decked land, lower the land count in the deck, and spin the wheel for another good top-deck card.

    1. Walking Ballista + Grim Monolith + Power Artifact - With infinite mana, the ballista can ping each opponent and creature down to 0 by casting it with infinite +1/+1 counters and then removing them to deal 1 damage to each target an infinite amount of times. This is the simplest and, most often, primary wincon as it doesn't even require the deck to be drawn to achieve.

    2. Aetherflux Reservoir - The classic storm-off and zap each opponent simultaneously by paying 50 life strategy. With Sensei's Divining Top and a mana cost reducer out, each re-casting of the top will trigger the reservoir and you'll reach 150+ life VERY quickly. Alternatively, if Aetherflux Reservoir is near the bottom of the deck and can only be cast after the deck is drawn, Hurkyl's Recall can be used to return all your artifacts to hand, and then Elixir of Immortality can be used to recur this as many times as necessary to reach the desired life total.

    3. Elsha of the Infinite and/or Monastery Mentor - Elsha herself can be a final wincon against 1 opponent after having cast 18 spells in a single turn due to her prowess ability giving +1/+1 until end of turn for each non-creature spell cast that turn. Additionally, having Monastery Mentor out before storming off will result in an absolute empire of monks who, along with the mentor, ALL have prowess. Then smash (but next turn because they won't have haste).

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    Date added 9 months
    Last updated 3 days
    Legality

    This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

    Rarity (main - side)

    9 - 0 Mythic Rares

    42 - 0 Rares

    22 - 0 Uncommons

    17 - 0 Commons

    Cards 100
    Avg. CMC 1.00
    Tokens 3/3 Ape
    Folders Ideas
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