I was perusing the various decks I’ve posted here and realized I have yet to build one revolving around lifegain. As usual, instead of designing something good I made a U-turn and sped toward the intersection of Jank & ‘Take obscure underutilized card and build around it’. Here’s where I ended up.


Lots and lots of Plains. A set of Flagstones of Trokair will help thin your library, so go ahead and throw those in if your budget allows.

We have to stabilize and maintain composure until we can pay into our finisher; usually this would entail a litany of defensive creatures and spells, or the kung fu razzle dazzle of countermagic. Well, thing is, we’re in…mono white. Pure doesn’t really lend itself to running interference, and while we could spam the board with legions of 1/1’s in an attempt to soak up damage there is another way: Lifegain. Yes, the very mechanic that will win us the game is what will keep us afloat long enough to reach that point. Let’s review.

Martyr of Sands is an oldie but a goodie. She’s cheap, not an immediate threat in and of herself, and can really pull our moxen out of the fire when it counts. Half our deck is white and thus we’re guaranteed to recuperate a big chunk of life when we put her to task.

Rhox Faithmender is here primarily for his doubling goodness. He’s robust enough to withstand most incidental damage, and provided he’s the target of Ordeal of Heliod he can actually get bigger still.

Light of Hope is a nice multiple choice spell, giving us the means to quash an Enchantment giving us the sour eye, or more often than not giving us a nice +4 bump to our life total. Flash it in to save our Preposterous Rhinoceros if he’s about to take just a bit more damage than he can handle.

Beacon of Immortality is here on a trial basis, as that lofty cmc makes me sweat just looking at it. I figure if things turned sour and we’ve somehow taken more overall damage than we’ve been gaining, one of these cast prior to our next turn just might push us far enough ahead to have that 50 life available. Time will tell if it’s an ace in the hole worth saving, or just a couple of dead cards that need replacing.

To summarize, simply heal Heal HEAL like your life depended on it…because it probably will.



A three piece combo powers the deck. The finisher was a no brainer; pumping 50 life into Aetherflux Reservoir would earn that coveted “Killpocalypse!” announcement in a certain online shooter. With the end game in focus, we now need to figure out how to quickly gain massive amounts of life.

For the Budget Conscious Show

Ordeal of Heliod is an awkward, clumsy card in ordinary circumstances—but I noticed it doesn’t actually force us to jump through hoops to reap the reward of 10 life points. There was a glimmer of potential: If we could somehow find a way to sacrifice it immediately, a vast quantity of life is there for the taking.

Claws of Gix acts as liaison between Ordeal of Heliod and the graveyard. Now it’s possible to bypass all that ‘whenever it attacks put a counter blah blah blah’. Simply sacrifice it at your leisure for 10 (or even 20) extra life points. But we still need a way to repeat this process…

•Three cards close the loop and complete the cycle; Auramancer, Restoration Specialist and Spectral Steel all permit us to return our Enchantment to hand (Restoration Specialist will salvage either artifact as well, in the event of untimely removal).

So it’s…

•Cast Ordeal of Heliod

•Sacrifice it to Claws of Gix for 10 (or 20) life

•Return it to hand with one of 3 options (Auramancer+Restoration Specialist+Spectral Steel) and repeat the process


Resolving Aetherflux Reservoir is our main concern at this stage. It’s easily countered, easily removed, so be prepared as you may have to recall it to hand so as to cast it again later.

Should it resolve, it’s pretty much game over at that point. Once we pay 50 life into its activated ability, there’s not much the opponent can do. They could always hit us with a Lightning Bolt and finish us off, but that’s unlikely given the vast quantity of life we’ll have amassed in preparation, not to mention the fact that they’ll die no matter what so it’s fairly pointless.

Dump 50 life into Aetherflux Reservoir and drown the opponent in a tidal surge of destructive damage!


•Try to get Rhox Faithmender in play while also keeping an eye out for Aetherflux Reservoir.

•Cast Ordeal of Heliod, ideally targeting one of our own creatures (an opponent’s will do in a pinch).

•Sacrifice the Enchantment to Claws of Gix for massive lifegain, then return it to hand with Auramancer, Restoration Specialist or Spectral Steel. Repeat until your life total has reached stratospheric proportions.

•Cast Aetherflux Reservoir and pay 50 life into it to sweep away any hopes or dreams your opponent may have had of winning the game.


Ajani, Strength of the Pride’s 0 functions as a great boardwipe (reaching 35+ life is a snap), while his other options are more situationally relevant.

Blacksmith's Skill is a cheap and effective way to protect key combo pieces, preserving them until we need them.

Sunbeam Spellbomb gives us a nice bump in life, but can also be used for draw power. It can be recalled to hand later as well, so keep that in mind.

Path to Exile puts the kaibosh on a given creature. Great at bypassing nasty activated abilities that could prove troublesome down the road.

•We run a couple copies of Lucky Offering because sometimes I get frustrated with the overwhelming infestation of Treasure Tokens plaguing the format, and I want them gone from my sight. When I get that feeling, I want contextual healing!

Mana Tithe is a seldom seen and oft forgotten spell once famously called “White’s Force Spike” (by me).

•Lastly, Zuran Orb makes sense as a contingency plan in the event we need to win right now but are just a few life points shy of the required 50. Trade lands for life at no extra cost to circumvent disaster, but be sure you can win then and there—you won’t get another chance.

I listed Authority of the Consuls in the maybeboard to show I’m aware of it. It would be nice to include but at $10~ it’s a bit too pricey.

”Now look! someone came up to him and said: “Teacher, what good must I do to gain everlasting life?””


Updates Add


63% Casual

37% Competitive

Revision 2 See all

(1 year ago)

+1 Authority of the Consuls maybe
-1 Blacksmith's Skill side
-1 Lucky Offering side
+3 Sunbeam Spellbomb side
-1 Zuran Orb side
Top Ranked
Date added 1 year
Last updated 2 days

This deck is Modern legal.

Rarity (main - side)

0 - 1 Mythic Rares

13 - 0 Rares

12 - 4 Uncommons

12 - 10 Commons

Cards 60
Avg. CMC 2.27
Tokens Ajani's Pridemate
Folders Modern
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