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|Commander / EDH||Legal|
|Commander: Rule 0||Legal|
Mayael the Anima
Legendary Creature — Elf Shaman
, : Look at the top five cards of your library. You may put a creature card with power 5 or greater from among them into play. Put the rest on the bottom of your library in any order.
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1 month ago
Thanks for the feedback Crow_Umbra, I appreciate it. I think consistency is where I want to be with this deck. I realize that I may have been leaning into Etali because of the "cool/splashy" factor, but I had a Mayael the Anima deck as my first deck, and before I really tuned it up, I would whiff with some regularity, and that always hurt, from tempo to mana and everything else. So I think that's a good read on not putting Etali in.
And I'm glad you agreed about Audacious Thief. It just feels like it needs to do more to be included in the deck. I have Goldspan in the Maybeboard currently, but you think the treasure support from Face-Breaker, Lannery, Mondrak, and Goldspan would really be a good synergy eh? Well, I'll give it a shot.
The other change I'm making is taking out Ardoz, Cobbler of War and putting back in Ogre Battledriver. I just think the haste is better for the deck in general, especially since one of my last cuts was to add in Rising of the Day.
4 months ago
I think that Commander damage is a key component of the game. It forces lifegain decks to have an actual win condition. It's also really necessary for the whole voltron archetype to exist.
And you can also get some great moments from Commander damage. A couple weeks ago I just won via commander damage with Mayael the Anima. I consider that an achievement unlocked.
5 months ago
Quicksilver Amulet, Elvish Piper, Monster Manual, Sol Ring, Lurking Predators, Sneak Attack etc come to mind. Also, i'd add 8-9 lands. 37-38 seems appropriate for this deck. If they don't lack flavour the usual supects like Birds of Paradise, maybe Exploration or the other one. Mayael the Anima
7 months ago
Hey Crow-Umbra, I finally got the chance to play Isshin in a pod a few nights ago! All of my playtesting has just been me playing Isshin and a friend's Mayael the Anima against each other online. It has helped me learn to assess threats to my deck's strategy in a 1v1 setting, and in 1v1, my Isshin deck is feels solid. But since I'm the only one doing the playtesting, I don't play more than 1v1. But maybe I should. That's a good thought to explore.
But. 1) What's your win rate with Isshin in your pod? 2) How do you win with Isshin in multiplayer? Not you specifically, but more generally, how does one win with Isshin in multiplayer, thousand-foot strategy and all that, although obviously I also want to know how you specifically win with your Isshin deck.
Thoughts on the two mutliplayer Isshin games:
The deck had a very Purph feel to it, and it was fun to play at the table and watch people get burned down. But I was first out in game one and second out in game two. There was way more interaction and removal at the table than usual, mostly from my side, especially a few great board wipes in both games. But I lacked the card draw and mana to get back up and running faster than other players after the wipes.
So what do I do? Lean more into group slug, i.e. put in Impact Tremors? Lean away from wipes and focus on ramp and draw? More protection for my creatures? Anyway, these are just some thoughts I'm kicking around. The finer points of piloting that I'm still struggling with and would love some input on can be articulated as thus.
3) In thinking of actions I could have taken differently in my games to better my chances of winning, I reasoned that I could have assessed who was the biggest threat at the table (I actually knew this both games, but more on that in question two) and just directed all my damage output to them first, thus knocking them out. Then I would turn on the other two players and gut them. I COULD play this way, but my feelings on playing that way can best be described as distasteful. I don't want to be a bully. Maybe more specifically, I dont want another player to have to sit out for a long time because I gunned them down first and then have them watch me slowly debone the other two players. Seems like it might be unfun for them. But is that a route to victory? I mean, if I'm going to become the archenemy right away because of the fast aggression of the deck and the quick changes to my board state, do I have to embrace that mindset? Which leads me nicely to question...
4) As the only deck in the meta with a robust removal suite, I played both games with a strategy towards parity for all players so that everyone could be at the table for as long as possible. Is this a bad strategy? To better define "parity for all" I'll give you an example. I knew the biggest threat at the table in game 1 was the Ghired, Conclave Exile deck, and I rightly removed its Anointed Procession when it was played, because I knew how out of hand that could get, but I held myself back from using more removal on its Garruk's Uprising in the vain hope that the other players at the table would understand the threat it represented and use their own removal on it. I also held back because I didn't want the Ghired player to feel unfairly targeted by my removal, even though I knew how big of a threat their deck was (The other two decks were a SLOW and poorly tuned Arixmethes, Slumbering Isle and the Isperia, Supreme Judge pre-con unchanged). When playing aggro (or maybe even magic in general), is playing for parity possible if a player is trying to win?
Now the last question is probably more of a style of play choice, but comes from the same place as the others.
5) I noticed that board wipes kept me in the game, and kept the game going, but at what cost? As I may have mentioned before, our meta is very little permission and removal, and we often get 3-4 games in over a 3 hour period. We seem to like this pace of play, as it allows us to switch up decks, try new things out, and everyone gets to do their thing. With a board wipe, it kept everyone at the table longer because the games lasted longer, but we only got 2 games in over the course of 5 hours. They were much closer games, with lots of back and forth, which kept it engaging, but maybe it would have been better to scoop and get more games in? My problem with board wipes is more a two part question I guess. Part I) How do I recover more quickly after a board wipe than my opponents? Do I need more card draw? Do I need more protection to keep my creatures around? And Part II) I guess this is similar to question four, but when is the right time in an aggro deck to play a board wipe? How do I threat assess the table correctly to say board wiping now will help me close out the game in a turn or two? And maybe more broadly, if my philosophy has been in almost all of my decks so far to win in a big flashy play all in one moment (infinite combo or alpha strike), do I need to shift off that playstyle in order to play a low to the ground fast aggro deck with a hefty removal suite? Is there a way in Isshin to have a big flashy win besides building board state over turns? Is that leaning more towards group slug?
Anyway, this is a massive post, and I know that it is an investment of time and energy to read all of this let alone answer all or even any of these questions, so if you have any thoughts that you want to share I am very appreciative that you took the time to read all this and come up with a/some response(s).
8 months ago
I'm making two switches to the deck. I'm cutting Disallow and going back to Arcane Denial, because there have been a number of games where the extra in Disallow's cost has been enough for me to not be able to cast it, and in my current meta, there aren't too many egregious abilities that need countering. The primary play testing done with this deck was in a 1v1 setting, against a Mayael the Anima deck, so naturally, that ability was always foremost on my mind. Additionally, Arcane Denial leans into the card draw mechanic, and thus fits more with the theme of the deck. The second switch I'm making is removing a Forest and putting in a Mosswort Bridge. The whole point of the deck is to have large creatures get in for lethal combat damage, and so having a land that will allow me to cheat out something for "free" while still tapping for a forest is great value.
1 year ago
So first things first - I see you swapped the commander to Atla Palani, Nest Tender, and I do think that she is stronger for cheating things into play as her plus her ability costs the same as a single Mayael the Anima activation, her ability triggers whenever an egg dies, and besides her you only have one egg producer in the deck - Nesting Dragon - and you aren't running any token doublers, I'd advise running something like Rings of Brighthearth or Illusionist's Bracers to copy her ability, allowing you to potentially cheat in multiple things a turn. However, her ability only triggers when something dies. I see you have Ashnod's Altar and Phyrexian Altar in the maybeboard, and they're definitely probably your best options to accomplish this as that mana can also be used to cast angels in your hand.
Also, your CMC is 4.03, which is ridiculously high. You also aren't running any mana ramp outside of artifacts, which while your commanders ability is based around cheating things into play - if you don't have access to your commander or sac outlets than you're screwed. Things like Cultivate, Kodama's Reach, Migration Path, or cards like Birds of Paradise, Avacyn's Pilgrim, Fyndhorn Elves, or even cost-reducer cards like Starnheim Aspirant, Pearl Medallion all can make a big impact. Or, even just swapping some of the higher CMC angels out for lower-costed ones, like Angel of Vitality, Angel of Jubilation, Resplendent Angel and Righteous Valkyrie can go a long way towards a smoother game.
1 year ago
If you're not against swapping the commander, I personally think Kaalia of the Vast is a better tribal angel commander, as while very similar to Mayael the Anima with cheating creatures into play, her ability does not cost mana to activate.
From the New Capenna set, Giada, Font of Hope is a must add. She's a mana dork for angels and acts as an anthem-effect by putting a +1/+1 counter on your angels whenever they ETB.
I'll comment more stuff later when I have time.
1 year ago
I definitely have somewhat mixed feelings, but in the end I definitely appreciate some of the support WoTC has given in terms of staple reprints (Sol Ring etc). Precons are great starting points for people, and since EDH is a big part of what's kept me interested in MTG over the years, I think it's helpful to the player base to have at least some regular support.
Reprints can help keep things affordable and accessible to new players, so the more opportunity for useable content, the better.
I first played EDH in college when a friend who was getting me into magic had me draft my first commander deck (Lavinia of the Tenth) for a game to teach me the format. It was definitely a fun challenge, but I wanted something a little more cohesive to build off of. A few months later I ended up getting my first precon, which was the C13 "Nature of the Beast" one. I used Mayael the Anima as the commander. Ever since then, EDH has been my most played regular format.