Sephara, Sky's Blade
Legendary Creature — Angel
You may pay and tap four untapped creatures you control with flying rather than pay this spell's mana cost.
Other creatures you control with flying have indestructible. (Damage and effects that say "destroy" don't destroy them.)
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|Commander / EDH||Legal|
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Sephara, Sky's Blade Discussion
2 days ago
Get ready for a long post. I put way to much effort into this.
Depends on what direction you want to go and how competitive you want to be. Currently, Ephemerate doesn't really give you much value for flicking your angels, meaning that it isn't worth the card it is taking up over just another angel. I see two different ways to take this deck, either leaning into Angel synergies with life gain or a Ephemerate deck.
Ephemerate decks are great, and if your looking for a budget deck for a kitchen table or low powered modern games then you can build something pretty cheaply by just looking around for cool cards on Scryfall. The issue is that if you want more than that and want a more powerful deck the creatures that work well with Ephemerate are generally really really good and become very expensive by being played loads. In competitive modern these are often 80 cards Yorion, Sky Nomad decks that run Stoneforge Mystic and Solitude as there main cards, which are very expensive. You can try something with Wall of Omens , Thraben Inspector and Charming Prince to generate value but it won't be very powerful with Stoneforge. I think if you want bang for your buck you probably want to try and build the deck around Angel's synergies, although if you want to upgrade into competitive Modern deck at some variable point in the future it is less good.
In the angel's direction, the main payoffs in Modern are being able to play Aether Vial , Resplendent Angel and Archangel of Thune which are all, presumably, out of your price range. To make a budget version you probably want to make out on Youthful Valkyrie , Speaker of the Heavens , Seraph Sanctuary and Bishop of Wings for additional synergies with Angels. You probably want to play some Serra Avenger as a cheap beater and source of Angel related triggers. Some other cards are Sephara, Sky's Blade , although with would be best with a source of tokens such as Lingering Souls and Spectral Procession and cheat it in more consistently if you want to build around it. Archangel of Tithes is greater in creature matchups if you play against them regularly and can easily win races combined with your lifegain. Angel of Invention is a 'Lord' effect that also can create chump blockers and have value if your creates all die. Honor of the Pure is a pump effect that is difficult to interact with. Starnheim Unleashed is one of the most powerful cards in standard Angels and can win games by itself.
As much as it pains me to say it as a big fan of Meld Gisela, the Broken Blade and Bruna, the Fading Light Flip aren't really that good, either dying to the most played removal in the format like ( Lightning Bolt ) for no value or costing 7 mana for too little upside. The same is true for Angel of Destiny which seems like a massive win more card 90% of the time. Starnheim Aspirant seems good but considering the number of white symbols in your costs I doubt this will be legitimately save on mana enough to warrant an inclusion. With your current mana base, you only going to draw double black to cast Sign in Blood 53% of the time by turn 6 and I doubt increasing the number of tapped lands is worth the card draw. Speaking of which making out on Scoured Barrens is probably worth it alongside a couple of other dual lands of your choice, maybe Silverquill Campus if your going to be running the Firja's Retribution which I recommend as that card is very very good.
TLDR: Add good cards cut bad cards.
1 month ago
I decided to pitch the combo for now and just go for some powerhouse creatures for this deck. As a Mel the one thing I don't like about the combo is that Altar is a dead card without Samurai or Rest in Peace . Plus there is a lot of value without this combo, and my opponents will appreciate less of it.
Took the deck for its first couple of runs tonight, unfortunately only 1v1 since only one member of my playgroup was available. I was up against Lathril, Blade of the Elves , and he had a lot of life, tons of tokens, and had knocked me down pretty low during the first game until I played Doomskar and saved and blinked all of my non-token creatures with Eerie Interlude . Prior to this I had done some damage and recovered some life with Sephara, Sky's Blade , and while he was successfully able to remove her, I was able to wipe him out pretty quick with my army. In the second game I resolved Coastal Piracy early and was able to draw cards like nobody's business. As a result, the game wasn't particularly close, and I was able to flash out Dictate of Heliod on his end step, and then lock down his many tokens with Lavinia of the Tenth to finish him off with my pumped army.
I really do like the relaxed, controlling pace of this deck. I had plenty of answers to various threats and didn't need to be stingy with them, which was nice. I'm definitely a fan, and don't feel like I need the splashy combos for now, though I will probably add Coat of Arms soon as a wincon and target for Whir of Invention .
1 month ago
Skyblinder Staff - it's a cheap way to make flyers pretty much unblockable, as not too many decks are heavy on reach creatures.
Archetype of Imagination is a bomb that makes your whole field pretty much unblockable.
Verdant Sun's Avatar has found its way into many of my decks. I'm surprised by how much the lifegain helps, especially in any deck that wants to play big creatures (and mine usually do).
1 month ago
Since this is a new deck and a work in progress, I am going to post a large maybeboard here of cards that I will likely try out.
3 months ago
Unless you're playing with some funky homebrew rules, your commander does have to be a legendary creature. For bird tribal, Kangee, Aerie Keeper or Kangee, Sky Warden would be the most obvious choices. Also, Screaming Seahawk does not get around the singleton restriction in the same way something like Relentless Rats does. Even if it did, I still don't think it would be worth running over the much faster Squadron Hawk . More relevant inclusions might be Watcher of the Spheres , Warden of Evos Isle , Soulcatchers' Aerie , Migratory Route , Wingmate Roc , Aven Mimeomancer , Emeria Angel , Favorable Winds , Kangee's Lieutenant , Judge's Familiar , Steel-Plume Marshal , Battle Screech , Skycat Sovereign , Pride of the Clouds , Sephara, Sky's Blade , Jotun Owl Keeper , Windreader Sphinx , Aven Gagglemaster , Thunderclap Wyvern , Jubilant Skybonder , Rally of Wings , Eyes in the Skies , Alrund's Epiphany , Aerial Assault , Rise of Eagles , Door of Destinies , Herald's Horn , Dovescape , Gravitational Shift , Kindred Discovery , Call to the Kindred , Serra the Benevolent , or Seaside Haven .
Looks like my comment is now a little redundant here, but hope the seconded advice still helps. Good luck!
3 months ago
Birds is a surprisingly well supported tribe, and flying tribal has been getting a fair bit of support recently. So building birds in commander can be both fun and powerful because you can combine old and new cards.
A creature has to be a Legendary creature to be legal as your commander. The classic option for birds would be Kangee, Aerie Keeper . Some other options that are more "Flying tribal" than bird tribal could be Kangee, Sky Warden (a very budget-friendly option), Isperia the Inscrutable , Akim, the Soaring Wind , Derevi, Empyrial Tactician or Alela, Artful Provocateur .
Now you should decide whether you want cards that support having Birds specifically: Aven Brigadier , Celestial Gatekeeper , Crookclaw Elder , Seaside Haven , Soulcatchers' Aerie , Airborne Aid , Migratory Route , Animal Sanctuary etc. Or if you just want cheap flyers that may or may not be birds and just play flying tribal: Battle Screech , Favorable Winds , Gravitational Shift , Gust of Wind , Island Sanctuary , Kangee's Lieutenant , Lofty Denial , Pride of the Clouds , Rally of Wings , Sephara, Sky's Blade , Siani, Eye of the Storm , Skycat Sovereign , Soulcatcher , The Raven's Warning , Thunderclap Wyvern , Tide Skimmer , Warden of Evos Isle , Watcher of the Spheres , Waterkin Shaman , Windstorm Drake , Winged Words , Battle Screech .
Your list has a lot of pretty bad cards that don't support your strategy. I would cut Healing Salve , Resupply , Take Up Arms , Call to Mind , Survival Cache , Refurbish (has 4 targets in your deck and no matter what you get you pay more mana than you should), Siegecraft etc. Pure lifegain spells are bad unless you build around them, and this is supposed to be a bird/flying deck right? Cards that make tokens without flying are not great because your lords and synergy don't make them better. So even though Raise the Alarm is a solid magic card, you would prolly rather have like a Mistral Charger because you can build synergy around it.
Removal is always good. You can almost never have too much of it. However, if you are really cool, you can try to play removal and card draw that is flavorful and synergistic as well: Ravenform , Wing Shards , Aerial Assault , Swan Song , Winged Words , Gust of Wind , Lofty Denial . Also, sol ring is great but more ramp is usually a good idea in commander, and Azorius Keyrune is also a bird!
Good luck with the screechy dudes!
4 months ago
Hey, well done on a $50 budget. You have good card sense if you're new on such a low budget.
I will try to match my suggestions with cards to consider cutting that are close to or equal in price. Some changes to consider:
- Sol Ring --> Swords to Plowshares
- Arcane Signet --> Syphon Mind
- Arguel's Blood Fast Flip --> Succumb to Temptation
- Sephara, Sky's Blade --> Seraph of the Scales
- Righteous Valkyrie --> Deathpact Angel
- Angelic Accord --> Promise of Bunrei
- Firja, Judge of Valor --> Luminous Angel
- Soul Warden --> Imperious Oligarch
- Victimize --> Defy Death
- Make a Stand --> Doom Blade
- Emerge Unscathed --> Cast Down
- Command Tower --> 1x Plains
- Caves of Koilos --> Temple of Silence
- Path of Ancestry --> 1x Plains
- Tainted Field --> 1x Plains
- Orzhov Basilica --> 1x Plains
- Opal Palace --> 1x Plains
Swords to Plowshares is the most expensive card here and you have many other removal spells to make up for not having it. Sol Ring is a staple mana rock in Commander and it's more ramp that can help to cast high CMC Angels. With Angels repeatable low mana cost ramp is more important then a single creature removal spell.
Good luck with your deck.
4 months ago
Another U/W option that's both budget and beginner-friendly is flyers. By including a critical mass of evasive creatures, you can soar right past blockers for the win. Some cards that synergize with such a plan include Watcher of the Spheres . Empyrean Eagle , Skycat Sovereign , Jubilant Skybonder , and Sephara, Sky's Blade . Then, you can choose to either go wide or go tall. Wide means add more token production like Midnight Haunting and Migratory Route . Tall means add more bombs like sphinx ( Azor, the Lawbringer , Isperia, Supreme Judge , Unesh, Criosphinx Sovereign , etc.) or angels ( Angelic Arbiter , Avacyn, Angel of Hope , Lyra Dawnbringer , etc.). Not all of the aforementioned cards are budget but it's easy enough to find cheaper alternatives. If you're playing with a casual (legacy) card pool, EDHREC can be a useful resource for finding cards that fit within an archetype. 60-card decks generally want to be faster than their EDH counterparts, but that really depends on how competitive your meta is. Here's the page for Azorious Flying BTW: Azorious Flying Theme | EDHREC