Are we really that surprised?

I don't know why, friend, but it always feels more polite to welcome you to the deck. So, welcome! This Seton, Krosan Protector list is an elfball-like strategy. To those unfamiliar with elfball, the philosophy is to ramp out aggressively with fast mana dorks into a draw engine, filter through a burst-y turn, and close out the game with a combo. Essentially, you snow-ball card advantage and ramp with elves. In my deck, the idea remains the same but... with druids.

Let us address the elephant in the room. Why should someone play Seton, Krosan Protector over other mono-green generals like Omnath, Locus of Mana, Ezuri, Renegade Leader, or Yisan Wandering Bard? Especially considering that this list is an elfball strategy? He’s not even an elf!

The primary reason for using Seton is because he provides pseudo-haste to all druids. A good follow up question here is "then, why play specifically druids?" For starters, the benefit to druid tribal is that most of the strongest mana dorks in the game are already druids (i.e. Priest of Titania, Elvish Archdruid, Karametra's Acolyte). A second reason is Gilt-Leaf Archdruid. Seriously, that guy's the nuts. The power to draw a card whenever you cast a Druid is already powerful enough for inclusion, but the ability to chose someone in your game and tell them they aren’t allowed to play anymore? Brutal.

With the addition of all the recent tribal support (I.e. Vanquisher's Banner, Kindred Summons, and Cavern of Souls) and you have a very potent tribe to build. So, how does the deck run, you say? I’m glad you asked...

Okay, so now that we know why we're playing ole' Seton here, how do we approach playing this deck? As with any deck, the first thing to do is know what cards you're looking for in your opening hand. Typically, you want about two or three lands, some mana dorks, and some draw. A draw engine is very important, as it will help you storm off in one big explosive turn.

As an example, a very keep-able hand is one that has Glimpse of Nature, Vitalize, three Forests, Llanowar Elves, and Arbor Elf. While purely an example, it can help put perspective on what we're looking for. You could have a Sylvan Library or Arbor Elf, but the idea remains the same. A one mana dork is always keepable, as you want to have Seton, Krosan Protector down on turn two as often as you can. The early game for this deck is pretty much done once you get to an upkeep after getting Seton on the table.

So, early game is pretty easy in concept. Play Seton and help him survive. What's next? This is where a draw engine is extremely important. Thankfully, the deck has a lot of different ways to stock up on cards. Zendikar Resurgent, Vanquisher's Banner, Skullclamp, Regal Force, Primordial Sage, Recycle, Kindred Summons, and even the aforementioned Gilt-Leaf Archduid / Glimpse of Nature... All of these are power tools to kickstart your big, snow-ball turns. Obtaining any one of these, and you can start to storm off. If you're having trouble storming, we do have a few methods of stalling, such as Ritual of Subdual, Halls of Gemstone, and Beast Within. But dont' worry, you have tools to get the storm started like Paradox Engine, Mobilize, and Vitalize to give yourself massive boosts in mana. As you cast druids, ramping and drawing cards, keep your eye out for your combo pieces. What combos? Why, I'm glad you asked...

Now that we know how to navigate the early to midgame, how do we win? Well, those who know me should find it unsurprising, but this deck wins with combos. This is a list of the combos you can use to close out the game.

  1. Argothian Elder + Maze of Ith = Infinite mana (only in the combat step)
  2. Priest of Titania + Sword of the Paruns
  3. Priest of Titania + Umbral Mantle
  4. Cloudstone Curio + Lightning Greaves + Priest of Titania
  5. Lightning Greaves + Priest of Titania + Temur Sabertooth
  6. Priest of Titania + Staff of Domination
  7. Umbral Mantle + Viridian Joiner

The Priest of Titania can be substituted for other cards like Elvish Archdruid, Wirewood Channeler, and Karametra's Acolyte. Voyaging Satyr and Krosan Restorer are also good to include if you have Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx, Itlimoc, Cradle of the Sun, or Gaea's Cradle.

You can also use Concordant Crossroads as a stand in for Lightning Greaves.

At any rate, once you have achieved your infinite mana, then you can slam down on a win-condition.

So let's assume we made it to infinite mana (or at least, a lot of it), what's next? From here we can use Kamahl, Fist of Krosa to smash our opponent to bits, Cloudstone Curio to make a lot of ETBS (Acidic Slime/Elvish Visionary, anyone?), and even just steal all the lands with Gilt-Leaf Archdruid. You either make it so your opponents can no longer win, or just smash them. Pretty simple in the grand scheme of things. If you used Staff of Domination to generate infinite mana, congratulations, you also have your win-con in play. Draw your deck for any one of the earlier stated win-cons. Gain infinite life. All of that fun stuff.

Again, thank you for coming by, friend. I hope this description was insightful and helpful. Feel free to leave a comment, suggestion, or just a +1. All forms of support are appreciated. Have a good one!


Updates Add

After playing a few games with this list, I've come to a few different conclusions. First, I GREATLY underestimated how this deck would perform. Two, this deck is highly susceptible to multiple fieldwipes. That being said, I'm very pleased with this deck so far. I've made a few changes to try and work out some of the weaknesses in the deck. Nothing is completely solid yet, so feel free to pitch in some advice.

  1. Winding Canyons out for Arch of Orazca. A method of getting some card draw for Argothian Elder-like combos.
  2. A Forest out for Regrowth. Recurs one of the mana spells that can lead to a win.
  3. Yeva, Nature's Herald out for Fierce Empath. Tutors Kamahl, Fist of Krosa or Primordial Sage. Yeva is not what this deck wants to do.
  4. Vanquisher's Banner out for Soul of the Harvest. While slightly more mana, being a creature is extremely important, as I can tutor for it. Also having trample has been somewhat helpful with Umbral Mantle as a finisher.
  5. Quest for Renewal out for Benefactor's Draught. A one shot of the same effect, but cantrips too.
  6. Ritual of Subdual out for Winter Orb. Both hose decks, but one is way less mana intensive.
  7. Natural State out for Natural Order. This deck doesn't want removal, this deck wants tutors, draw, and ramp.