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Marath, Will of the Enchantress

Commander / EDH* Combo Enchantment RGW (Naya)

Archl0rd5

Maybeboard


I am a part of the PlayEDH discord so if you want to come play with me or just chat about enchantress stuff feel free to join us.

https://discord.gg/yFYUXaC

Welcome to my Marath Enchantress Primer! A little bit about me: I've been playing Magic since the original Innistrad block, finding that I really enjoyed synergy when building decks. Marath has been my main commander for a little over 4 years now, taking on the enchantress theme after seeing someone play R/G enchantress online. Enough about me, on to the Primer!

Introduction: Marath, Will of the Enchantress is primarily a Combo deck, trying to stall the game before assembling a combo of it's own. The deck is meant to play hard ball, and should only be played in more casual setting if you A. increase the average CMC of the deck, and B. remove some of the harsher stax peices (e.g. Rest in Piece, Root Maze) The deck really wants to slam an enchantress t1-3 and start playing enchantments until you either hit critical mass or assemble a combo. My goal for the deck was take the well known G/W enchantress shell and expand on its win conditions.

Colors: So why G/W/R? G/W is a pretty strong deck as is and has access to some descent commander options that can synergize with the over-all build of the deck quite nicely. Adding red to the deck does 1 huge thing for the shell: combo potential. Generally, G/W enchantress aims to win by locking the board down and then beating face with Karametra, God of the harvest. Adding Marath into the equation let's us combo! Red also gives us access to some pretty great enchantments like Stranglehold and Blood Moon

Strengths:: Extremely resilient. Flexible. Can win out of nowhere. Marath (Commander that scales well). Enchantments are hard to deal with, and most decks that can run enchantment hate don't run it in mass. While having access to Marath is awesome, the deck itself has a lot of synergy and doesn't need Marath in play to function.

Weaknesses: Other enchantress decks can be a tough matchup. losing Marath (Kind of). Bane of Progress will discuss below. Control match-ups are tricky. With the addition of recent enchantress's it's been easier to Maintain card advantage, but losing an early enchantress can put you behind.

Early Game: Getting an enchantress t1-3 is optimal so you can imediately start drawing more cards. With the addition of Imperial Recruiter and Recruiter of the Guard having 3 mana by turn two is important for these or any 3-drop enchantress. Opening hand should have 2-3 lands at most, leaving room for an early stax piece and card advantage. I find myself Turtoring for Sylvan Library a lot, it's that good. Cards like Root Maze may cause some salt,try to show other players that having these cards out are good for the table as a whole and can stop players from doing crazy things early. It is very easy to combo with Fertile Ground and Earthcraft early. Try to lead with fertile ground when doing so. Players won't generally find fertile as offensive as earthcraft.

Mid Game: By this point you want to reach critical mass and combo. Depending on the match-up you may need to wait for a good opportunity to combo, but dropping a Grand Abolisher or Destiniy Spinner pretty much solves that issue. I find that once you are drawing 2-3 cards per enchantment (Critical mass) the game is pretty much in the bag. I have added Open the Armory and Gamble , allowing us to set up combos much faster.

Playing Marath Marath is very strong and is our main combo pieces. When you resolve Marath one of two things should be happening: You win the game, OR you need to kill things. Resolving a couple of stax pieces and then playing Marath can be very fortuitous, but be wary of the commander tax. Commander tax doesn't seem like an issue until you want to combo but can't because 5 mana is too much. ALWAYS choose x=1 when using Marath's abilities because it is the most efficient way to use his ability. Let's say you need to kill Academy Rector to get earthcraft and win. You can choose to deal 2 damage to rector x=2, but if an opponent responds with Swords to Plowshares, you now need to deal 2 more damage to rector before their removal resolves. Instead, deal 1 to the rector and let it resolve, then deal 1 more damage. If an opponent responds you only need to deal 1 more damage, saving you 1 mana AND potentially keeping Marath on the field to start the Earthcraft shenanigans. Creating elementals X=1 is best, as the creatures you make are for utility and blocking if absolutely needed. If you have cast Marath as a set up for comboing off next turn always leave mana open so you can respond to removal or steal effects, remember that Marath can kill itself with only 2 mana if it is a 3/3. You remove a counter to make a creature (2/2), then you remove a counter to deal 1 damage to itself, this will kill Marath as it will only be 1/1. Removing the counters from Marath is a part of the cost to activate the ability, this can sometimes be relevant if someone tries to increase the base toughness of Marath in response to you activating his abilities.

Late Game: Leave and Remove Enchantments allows us to reload our hand for more enchantress triggers or bounce Serra's Sanctum . They can also save you from our worst nightmares; Ugin, the Spirit Dragon, Merciless Eviction, and Bane of Progress. On an empty hand you want to find Eidolon of Blossoms because it will trigger itself. Sometimes it is better to hold on to enchantments for when you draw an enchantress as the deck has multiple ways of finding them.

Sometimes, you will find yourself in a position where the board is locked due to multiple stax pieces. This is a great time to resolve Marath and start controlling the board. This situation doesn't happen too often for me but if you're play group has a lot of stax, Unbound Flourishing should be in your deck. Flourishing will allow you to end games pretty quickly on stalled board states

Key cards to watch for: Mystic Remora what an annoying card, I’ve found there are two ways to play around the card. If they have played it early with little mana acceleration I’ll generally play out my cards as normal and let them draw, this forces them to sac it early and discard a good bit of cards due needing mana to play all the cards they’ve drawn. If they play it out early with a lot of mana acceleration I recommend waiting it out, forcing the player to pay a ton of mana for 1 or 2 cards. Phyrexian Revoker Cursed Totem these cards can cause problems, but try not to spend too many resources getting rid of them as eventually the board will be wiped or someone else will deal with it. We also have Seal of Cleansing and friends to deal with them if we are looking to combo off that turn.

Authority of the Consuls Blind Obedience these two cards stop Earthcraft shenanigans, but we can still combo through them with the Hardened scales + Mana echoes combo.

Spellskite is very good against us because it can stop +1/+1 shenanigans by redirecting counter placement. Doesn’t stop earthcraft based combos.

Notion Thief can be annoying but with toughness of 1 it’s pretty easy to deal with if you have Marath out. If they try to cast this with a draw trigger on the stack you can hold priority after it resolves and kill it before your draw trigger. Same with opposing Aven Mindscensor

Combos:
Mana Echoes+Hardened Scales+Marath, Will of the Wild

Fertile Ground+Earthcraft + Marath

Cloudstone Curio + Nature's Chosen + Utopia Sprawl

Cloudstone Curio + Dockside Extortionist + Any creature

Aluren + Mana Echoes + Marath

Mana echoes and hardened scales combo with marath because you pay 1 mana to make a 1/1 elemental, you produce 2 mana with echoes, use 1 mana to add a +1/+1 counter to marath (Hardened scales replaces it with 2 counters so you net 1 counter) and 1 mana to make another elemental. This produces 3 mana with echoes. Then use 2 mana to put two 1/1 counters (separately) on marath and 1 to make an elemental. You repeat this until you have "infinite" colorless mana. Then you ping everyone because you can put infinite counters on marath. If you expect opponents to have removal you should have extra lands available to tap so you can respond by attempting the combo in response.

Fertile ground and Earthcraft is kinda weird but it works. First you tap marath to untap the (basic) land with fertile ground on it. You tap the land for 2 mana and use it to make 2 elementals. Marath should be at 1 counter assuming this is the first time you cast him. Tap the two elementals for 4 mana and use 1 mana (3 left) to make 1 more elemental. Tap the remaining elemental to make 2 more mana (5 mana remaining). you now have just enough mana to cast marath again, Yay! As you repeat this process you will find that you can cast Marath infinite times and have just enough mana to do so. Once Marath is at 10000000000 counters, you make 50000 creatures and use them to make a ton of mana. Then you use the mana to ping people with marath. One note: simply having a basic land making 2 man isn’t enough, the land needs to be able to produce any color. Abundant Growth can pair with Utopia Sprawl or Wild Growth for a similar effect.

Cloudstone Curio has had my eye for a minute now so I’ve decided to try it. The biggest downside of the card is that the deck has a pretty hard time tutoring for it (gamble and enlightened tutor). It’s really good because we can bounce a Stax piece to break parity. In addition, Curio can pair with a multitude of cards to start ripping through the deck with loops. One of the easiest to loop is Utopia Sprawl and Nature's Chosen. Tap forest for 2g and cast nature’s chosen on a white creature ( Heliod's Pilgrim is conveniently white and tutors for both of these.) . Trigger curio and respond by untaping the forest with sprawl on it with the white creature’s new ability. Untap the white creature with chosen and recast sprawl, bouncing the chosen. With an enchantress out you can draw the whole deck and enchant the land with a second enchantment to generate infinite mana.

Dockside Extortionist will create infinite mana with the cloudstone if you can creature at least one more treasure than it takes to cast it and another creature. Also interacts very well with Leave. I've seen that Temur Sabertooth is a great way to make infinite mana but I think saber tooth is a dead card on its own in the context of this deck.

Aluren is insanely strong, as we only have 2 creatures that can’t be cast for free while it’s out. While practicing I found that it combos with Mana Echoes. Since aluren does not stop commander tax we can cast Marath without colored mana. First cast Marath for free, it will die. Then we cast Marath for 2 mana, it will resolve with 2 counters and generate 1 mana from echoes. With the mana make an elemental and generate 2 from the echoes. Use 1 mana to make another elemental and generate 2 more colorless, up to 3. Marath will die and we need 1 more mana to cast it (unfortunately). Cast Marath for 4 and generate 3 colorless. Use 1 mana to make an elemental and generate 4 mana, repeat this process, casting Marath as many times as you like and generate infinite generic mana. Use mana to cast a huge Marath and ping the table.

With Aluren , Cloudstone Curio , and Recruiter of the Guard you can tutor and play every creature from your deck sans Eidolon and rector. This also tutors out every aura in our deck as well since Recruiter fetches for Heliod's Pilgrim, Pilgrim ETB trigger tutors for and aura and triggers cloudstone to put Recruiter into hand. Or, you can just win the game by grabbing Dockside extortionist and looping That for infinite mana, with mana kill table with Marath.

Key Choices:

9/10 times you should name "White" with Utopia Sprawl and if possible it should be put on a basic forest (To enable Earthcraft and play around our own Blood Moon, as Sprawl will fall off if the land stops being a forest), Savannah is a great land for Utopia Sprawl if you have no basic forest. Having G/W or W/W from one land will allow you to cast the majority of your spells no problem. Basic plains are best for Wild Growth

Heliod's Pilgrim Should be grabbing Fertile Ground

Card Choices:

Eldritch Evolution is out for Survival of the Fittest , I have been play testing this change over the past weeks and Survival is just stronger. The rector line with evolution is a little clunky, and survival triggers enchantress's as well as getting Destiny Spinner and Alseid of Life's Bounty for more cast triggers.

Destiny Spinner is in over Veil of Summer, Spinner can be tutored by all of the tutors, triggers enchantresss’, loops with Cloudstone aluren for instant speed draw. This list goes on-and-on.

Alseid of Life's Bounty is in over Squirell nest, let’s be real here. Squirrel nest earthcraft combo is clunky, and far worse then fertile ground. In addition, when I draw Squirrel nest during game I always wish I didn’t have it in my hand. Alseid will add much needed protection, again can be tutored by all of the tutors, and combos with CS And Aluren. My assumption was right, losing squirrel nest was insignificant to the deck's ability to combo. Alseid is always a welcomed draw.

Setessan Champion is in over Unbound Flourishing. Don’t get me wrong,flourishing is fun, but it doesn’t do enough the turn it is played for 3 mana. The deck is getting to a point where every card has high value, I need to start consolidating combos and giving preference to cards that can protect said combos or draw cards.

Wolf-willow haven will definitely be added to the deck, just need to figure out what to cut. As of this recent update I still can't think of a card to take out.

Smothering Tithe is out. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great card, but not in this deck. 4 mana do-nothing isn’t where we want to be and the deck doesn’t have the tools to abuse it. Maybe in a different build.

Aura Shards is out. It was a tough one to let go but it takes too many resources to make it effective. Often times casting it and not having a follow up just puts you in an awkward spot. Am debating on Act of Authority as it has immediate impact and can take out an enchantment or Cursed Totem that is stopping us from comboing on the combo turn.

The maybeboard has cards that I took out because I wanted to make the deck a little more streamlined and these cards were too clunky. Parallel Lives and Anointed Procession+Tooth and Claw create infinite Etbs for purphoros or impact tremors. If you want to go less stack and more battle cruiser I would add these cards.

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Date added 3 years
Last updated 2 months
Exclude colors UB
Splash colors R
Legality

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Rarity (main - side)

9 - 0 Mythic Rares

48 - 0 Rares

14 - 0 Uncommons

17 - 0 Commons

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 1.96
Tokens None Treasure, 1/1 Elemental
Folders Follow, Commander, immediate make
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