Rhys the Redeemed

Rhys the Redeemed

Legendary Creature — Elf Warrior

, : Create a 1/1 green and white Elf Warrior creature token.

, : For each creature token you control, create a token that's a copy of that creature.

Rhys the Redeemed Discussion

Mana_Mythic_Legendary on Pursuing Perfection, Part 10: Selesnya …

1 month ago

Every dual color up until now has been some sort of aggressive, negative experience for other players, and Selesnya certainly has the potential to be no different. Combining Green’s predilection for quality with White’s penchant for quantity (AND stacking board buffs) makes for a lethal pairing in the combat phase. Rhys the Redeemed, Captain Sisay, and Gaddock Teeg are just a few commanders with justifiable appeal for power gamers. And don’t forget the enchantments: Aura Shards, Mirari's Wake, and Hunting Grounds all have singularly disruptive board presence, and that’s just a few on a stellar list.

And yet, undeniable potency aside, this is an almost grandmotherly pairing: you don’t so much play Selesnya to ruin someone else’s day as to ensure you have the best one. A properly built deck in these colors should wrap around its pilot like a blanket fresh out of the dryer, basting you in a pervasive feeling of shelter, growth, and self-promotion. Another good analogy might be a garden tended by someone with an emerald thumb, game-breaking fertilizer, and the patience of Saint Francis. In summary, players running these are very much there to do their own thing without interruption: the problem is, once they’ve done their own thing, opponents find out that the “game-breaking fertilizer” is typically their own mulched remains.

It’s also oddly human-centric.

Ok, enough poetry. Now to the really fun bit: we’re here to talk thematic commanders, so let’s dive into that roster. Today, we’re discussing the Selesnya themes of Lifegains, Counterplay, and “Don’t Look at Me!”. As always, please bear in mind that our focus here is not necessarily competitive but rather on thematic, archetypical commanders. Just don’t judge me harshly for including a lot of beasts.

Lifegains

I spelled with an "s" for a reason. Yes, as covered in a past article, Black has a more intimate relationship with the life total. Yes, Black both drains life and spends life. BUT… there is a profound difference between eating cookies and baking them. Black is the undisputed cookie monster (and a bit of a baker, to be fair), but Selesnya could, to continue the analogy, take any bake off by storm. Prize money, people: Selesnya’s about not only baking that cookie, but getting prize money for it. In other words, crossbreeding these colors gets you a thematic trend toward gaining life AND triggering something whenever you do. Think combotastic crap like the Accomplished Alchemist and Rhox Faithmender, or Heliod, Sun-Crowned and Spike Feeder. The possibilities are… well, a little scary.

Lathiel, the Bounteous Dawn

The Oprah of lifegain. Who needs general damage when you can drown your opponent in creatures the approximate size of your life hack? Smack them with the Angel of Destiny, or… wow, there are a lot of relevant angels. Gather it. Just bring your lifelink and enjoy.

Trelasarra, Moondancer Direct, though the scry is a nice touch. This is a commander made for some sort of evasion, the Soul Warden cycle, and a pile of tokens. Like, maybe March of the Multitudes. Hehehehe…

Trostani, Selesnya’s Voice … Sheesh. I mean, I’ve had this built on and off, but… still, sheesh. If you’ve never heard of the Phyrexian Processor, enjoy the pearl I just gave you. Green-White is token central: hell, their own private keyword about it is right on this commander. This is a definite instance of the Green penchant for chunks being over-synergized with the white predilection to breed like rabbits. Or, in this case, Phyrexian Minions.

Counterplay

I’ve covered stax twice by this point, once in White and once in Azorius. I don’t deny that the potential for oppression is there: one of my favorite cards in Selesnya is Glare of Subdual. However, I can’t help feeling that it’s coming from a different direction in this slice of the pie. While Blue and White are geared toward inflicting stagnancy, Selesnya’s stax are angled toward preventing thematically negative effects, kind of a mercy mission for your opponent’s resources. I think Quakers would like it here.

Trostani Discordant Mind control pervasive in the local meta? Not anymore! Second Trostani is actually a rather inoffensive commander for everyone who’s not a thief, offering both board support and considerable political clout. Other players may even go out of their way to keep her up and you in the game, just to screw over that one guy.

Gaddock Teeg Ah, the man himself. I never found him especially oppressive, leaning more toward creatures by disposition. Not everyone will feel the same way. He cuts most conventional boardwipes out of the mix, and God help super-friends. You can almost picture the little hobbit raising his hands and saying “Let’s have a nice, simple game, shall we?” Which isn’t something you expect in a typical game of Commander, now that I think about it.

Yasharn, Implacable Earth Land fixing is nice, but this is where things are downright hostile. Those may look like tusks, but those are really two giant middle fingers pointed at black decks.

“Don’t Look at Me!”

When we were little, my brother would build cereal box walls between us as we ate breakfast, then stare at me over them. Whenever I eyed him like the nutcase he was, he’d scream “DON’T LOOK AT ME!!!”

I don’t think I need to explain the point.

Dragonlord Dromoka

I always liked the aesthetic of Dosan the Falling Leaf, but not enough to make him a commander. Dromoka, meaty beast of two colors that she is, has a bit more appeal. All but guaranteeing an uninterrupted turn, combo players could do worse.

Sigarda, Host of Herons A 5/5 with flying for five would be nice. Hexproof on a general is competitive. Putting a kibosh on all offensive-sacrifice decks ever tagging you? Downright savage. I like this card a lot.

Mirri, Weatherlight Duelist So… commander damage is a tried, true plan. Lots of people try it. Lots of people won’t be particularly offended by Mirri’s soft push for it. All the token-fiends out there, though, are going to flip their collective gourds when they find out the Silent Arbiter got legendary and started playing favorites. Word of advice: NEVER give her vigilance.

And, for a personal favorite: Karametra, god of the harvest

As readers know, I like ramp. However, even I think this is broken. I genuinely feel guilty whenever I think of building it again. While she doesn’t approach the misery of Zur the Enchanter or Purphoros, God of the Forge, the power dynamic here is shattering. One turn with a Whitemane Lion or anything similar will secure you a lead. One turn with whitemane lion and a Lotus Cobra? Amulet of Vigor? Tireless Provisioner? God have pity on your tiny, shriveled soul, because your opponents won’t. At least, if they ever manage to catch up under what I assume will be a deluge of ETB and blink effects. There are so many degenerate, savage combos encouraged by this reaping wench that I couldn’t list them all and reasonably expect anyone to finish the article. Let me just close this by saying she turns any card with landfall into a gamechanger, and there are a LOT of good landfall cards.

That's it for this round. Thoughts and questions are welcome. I hope you enjoyed it, and will come back soon for Simic!

Prior Articles:

Gruul

Rakdos

Dimir

Azorius

Green, with links to the other mono-colors

Gadianten on Scourge Under Moonlight

2 months ago

Your commanders strength lies in combat and your colors in fast aggressive and overwhelming force, in short I would play it similar to Edric, Spymaster of Trest but with less politics and more face smashing. Use green to ramp up mana fast, fueling future big plays with red to aid in haste and repeated same turn attacks. Your commander should net you enough cards to pursue both.

With haste in mind I would look more into more mass haste effects like Fires of Yavimaya and Fervor to keep the assault coming, there is no reason a creature just cast should not net you a replacement card in the same turn. I also recommend overrun effects like well, Overrun, Xenagos, God of Revels and similar to flatten your foes and any defenses they may have to prevent chump blocks and keep the cards flowing.

With your strong ability to card draw I recommend more lands probably around 36 minimum and spells to get those lands into play rapidly, you should ideally be able to cast two to three spells on each of your turns. Some other good ramp ideas are Nature's Will, Druids' Repository and Sword of Feast and Famine or similar, combine with Aggravated Assault if your feeling brutal.

I like tokens but I don't think your commander is consistent enough with tokens to really be a rewarding strategy compared to Rhys the Redeemed or some similar token commander. Cards like Wolfbriar Elemental still have a place due to generating an instant in tribe army without the need for support cards like Parallel Lives and Huntmaster of the Fells  Flip is just fine since hes in tribe and is a pretty good werewolf even without tokens.

Ziabo on Tribal Elf/Token

2 months ago

Very nice start to an elf tribal.

Aura Shards over Naturalize & Generous Gift over Disenchant

Maybe you could add Rhys the Redeemed? He can help populate the field. Also while you're doubling tokens Second Harvest would be great as it's an instant and doubles all tokens.

Rhys of the Wilt-Leaf is my elfball token deck.

Good luck with the deck! <3

libraryjoy on Balancing my 2 decks against …

2 months ago

I agree with Gavriel, except for one thing. The white deck could run a couple of Call to Glory to untap all creatures (also gives pseudo-vigilance and the element of surprise). The curve on the white deck is way too high, and there are too many counterspells in the blue deck. Repeatable token generation is definitely the way to go. Consider things like Populate, Growing Ranks, Sundering Growth. To interact with big threats from the blue deck, Oblivion Ring definitely could find a place. To give white a "sleep" effect, I like Blinding Light. And the Whelming Waves do seem especially cruel against the white deck. If you keep them in, you also need to give white a nasty edge to play. Celestial Dawn would wreck the blue deck entirely. You could also include things like Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, Conqueror's Flail, Grand Abolisher or Silence to give white a competitive edge against all the counterspells (and they're all pretty expensive, because they are so effective).

Rhys the Redeemed would be an awesome include for the white deck. You might also look for things that make bigger scarier tokens, like 4/4 angels Moonsilver Spear or Seraphic Greatsword. Or low to the ground anthems like Honor of the Pure. Plus a little card draw in there somehow. Not white's strong suit, but something like Mentor of the Meek might work.

TheVectornaut on What’s your “dick move” moment?

2 months ago

If they didn't want me to use Rhys the Redeemed, Terastodon, and Mirrorpool to destroy their lands, my opponents shouldn't have Cataclysmed and Cataclysmic Gearhulked in back-to-back casual commander games played in a literal Arbys.

FalconForce on Staring Contest: A List of Blink-Effect Cards

3 months ago

Nightmare Shepherd is one of the best as it adds a lot of functionality with no upfront cost and allows you to exploit sacrifice mechanics like evoke. Creating token clones with etb/ltb can easily become overpowered, especially when combined with populate. In fact I built a great ETB Roon EDH deck around it using cards like Yosei, the Morning Star, Protean Hulk and Wayfaring Temples that clone themselves. Token clone generation is amazing because it's essentially ETB blinking as a side effect. You have some cards that do it already listed under abuse but I think the mechanic is good enough and has enough viable cards that it might be worth making a new category for it.

Token clone makers

Stolen Identity Blade of Selves Mirror Mockery Zndrsplt's Judgment Repudiate / Replicate Hour of Eternity Supplant Form Dance of Many Minion Reflector Bramble Sovereign Progenitor Mimic Anointed Procession Quasiduplicate Rhys the Redeemed Back from the Brink Dual Nature Mimic Vat Rite of Replication Song of the Worldsoul Helm of the Host Doubling Season Parallel Lives Battle for Bretagard Mechanized Production Orvar, the All-Form Prototype Portal Saheeli, the Gifted Saheeli's Artistry Seance Second Harvest Soul Foundry Spitting Image Splinter Twin Replication Technique Saheeli Rai Mirror March Mirrorworks Molten Echoes Mythos of Illuna Sublime Epiphany Flamerush Rider Felhide Spiritbinder Littjara Mirrorlake God-Pharaoh's Gift Hofri Ghostforge Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker Followed Footsteps Nightmare Shepherd Osgir, the Reconstructor Echo Storm Cackling Counterpart Esika's Chariot Feldon of the Third Path Flameshadow Conjuring Trickster's Talisman & of course anything with populate.

Also some other blink type cards:

Blink-Yorion, Sky Nomad Conditional bounce- Cunning Evasion ETB clone- Wall of Stolen Identity Graveyard blink- Cauldron of Souls, Twilight Shepherd, Adarkar Valkyrie ETB Abuse- Jalira, Master Polymorphist, Proteus Staff, Master Transmuter. Listing the ones that specifically clone or blink artifacts in their own group might be helpful too.

Load more