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~~~Experience is the teacher of all things~~~

This is a Simic +1/+1 counters deck with Ezuri, Claw of Progress as the general. Obviously Simic isn't necessarily the best color combination for +1/+1 counters, but I really wanted to build a Simic deck and +1/+1 counters seemed like a fun way to do it. Plus I already run Ezuri, Renegade Leader (Last of the Llanowar) so I figured why not run both Ezuri's? I also really like the idea of experience counters. They remind me of the eminence ability in the way our opponents can't really interact with it/ them. Once we have the experience counters, there's nothing our opponents can do about it. We'll have them for the rest of the game.

Much like my other Ezuri deck, this deck started out as somewhat of a low power budget build, but over time I started to realize it's true potential and couldn't resist the urge to tune it. It's first few iterations tried to use as many unblockable creatures as possible to get damage through, but was slow and clunky at best. Since then it's undergone more iterations then any other deck I currently play. Recently I made a complete overhaul of the deck list in a attempt to be less reliable on Ezuri, Claw of Progress and couldn't be happier with the results. The deck finally plays at the fast paced explosive power level I was looking for.

Just like most of my other decks, this deck is intended to be what I've started referring to as 'ocEDH' or 'optimized casual'. Power level is subjective so the rule zero conversation usually goes something like... "This is an optimized build that uses some fast mana, a little interaction, and can consistently threaten a win by turn eight or nine. I run the Sage of Hours combo, but will almost never use it to go infinite and win. The rule I've set for myself with this card is to take one extra turn per turn cycle, until it's inevitably removed."

I've decided to leave the list view on 'custom' to help showcase how synergistic this deck actually is. This helps to help showcase how many different roles one single card can play within the deck, and also points out reasons for some unusual selections. If this view is too overwhelming or confusing for you, simply select the 'type' option from the drop down menu in the top left corner of the deck list.

GOALS / PURPOSE

The main goal of this deck is to abuse Ezuri, Claw of Progress's first ability by playing as many 2 power or less creatures as possible to gain experience counters. We can then use Ezuri, Claw of Progress's second ability to make one massive creature (hopefully with trample, flying, or unblockable) and use it to beat our opponents to death.

Obviously this strategy is heavily dependent on our commander being in play, so I've included some counterspells and a few other spells that give shroud/ hexproof/ indestructible. There's also a significant amount of ramp if we need to cast Ezuri, Claw of Progress more than once or twice. If all else fails, there's still a critical mass of larger creatures/ other ways for the deck to win without Ezuri, Claw of Progress.

In terms of strategy and playstyle, one thing we'll really want to pay attention to while piloting this deck is our sequencing. Since Ezuri, Claw of Progress's second ability triggers at the beginning of combat we'll really want to consider what plays to make in our first main vs. our second main. By paying close attention to this we should be able to maximize the amount of counters we can put on things and hopefully get the most value out of our commander.

OPENING HAND

Despite my best efforts this deck will still play like a battlecruiser build on occasion. In order to get around that and try to break parity as fast as possible, we'll want to keep any opening hand that will allow us to play Ezuri, Claw of Progress a turn or two early. Ideally we'll want 3 lands, 2 lands and a piece of ramp (drawing into our 3rd or 4th land shouldn't ever be a problem), a 2 power or less creature, and if possible some form of draw. This deck can pretty easily run out of gas without any draw spells in our opening hand so keep that in mind.

EARLY GAME

The early game should be spent trying to get Ezuri, Claw of Progress out as soon as possible, and then play as many 2 power or less creatures as possible. Getting Ezuri, Claw of Progress out a turn or two early to start accumulating experience counters is huge for our late game strategy. This deck is designed to play and advance our strategy at an exponential rate, so more counters early game means even more counters late game.

LATE GAME

Hopefully by now we've accumulated quite a few experience counters and can really start putting them to use. By now we should have plenty of mana to start dropping some of our higher CMC heavy hitters. If we can combine a high amount of experience counters with a counter doubling effect and place them all on a high power creature we'll be in business. This will allow us to start advancing our board state at an exponential rate and begin to pull away form our opponents to break parity. Once we've done that we can start swinging for huge amounts of damage to close out the game.

WIN-CONS

This deck can win a number of different ways (listed below), but will most consistently win via combat damage.

  1. Infinite turns with Sage of Hours.

  2. Upkeep trigger with Simic Ascendancy as long as it has 20 counters on it.

  3. Casting / attacking with Craterhoof Behemoth / Pathbreaker Ibex.

  4. Infect in the form of Blighted Agent / Inkmoth Nexus / Plague Myr.

  5. Putting +1/+1 counters on Champion of Lambholt / Cultivator of Blades to pump the team.

  6. Making all our creatures unblockable with Herald of Secret Streams.

  7. The ultimate flavor win and side quest... swinging with a swole Birds of Paradise / Ornithopter of Paradise.

Sage of Hours + 5 experience counters = Infinite turns

Akroma's Memorial = Just an absolute banger in any creature based deck. When paired with enough mana and cards like Beast Whisperer / Soul of the Harvest / The Great Henge we can usually cast most of our deck and then just swing for the win.

Arachnogenesis = Allows us to swing out on a turn without fear of being killed on the crack back. Will also trigger Ezuri, Renegade Leader's second ability giving us a bunch of experience counters. Pairs nicely with Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider / Doubling Season / Spark Double.

Avenger of Zendikar = Great way to get a bunch of experience counters with one single spell. Also pairs nicely with Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider / Doubling Season / Spark Double / Strionic Resonator.

Cultivator of Blades = Similar to Avenger of Zendikar giving us a couple extra experience counters. Obviously another card that pairs well with Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider / Doubling Season / Spark Double / Strionic Resonator.

Glen Elendra Archmage = Repeatable counter effect with our commander. Adding The Great Henge can more or less lock out our opponents from casting spells we don't like.

Genesis Wave = This card is busted whenever it's cast for 13 or more and could easily be considered a win-con of it's own. Pairs really nicely with anything that taps for huge amounts of mana such as Circle of Dreams Druid / Itlimoc, Cradle of the Sun / Gyre Sage / Selvala, Heart of the Wilds / Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx. Add an untap effect like Fatestitcher / Kiora's Follower / Minamo, School at Water's Edge for even more value.

Herald of Secret Streams = Makes all of our creatures with +1/+1 counters on them unblockable. Great to play when we already have a bunch of huge creatures since our opponents won't be expecting them to be unblockalbe all of a sudden.

Iridescent Hornbeetle = This little guy is sneakily good in this deck. We'll just want to pay attention to how many +1/+1 counters we're putting on our creatures. It's not a may ability so the game will force us to do it even if we forget, but we'll need to remember how many +1/+1 counters we actually put on our creatures that turn. Just like our other token creators this card pairs really well with Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider / Doubling Season / Spark Double / Strionic Resonator.

Kalonian Hydra = Such a powerful effect since it triggers on attack before damage is dealt. Pairs really nicely with our other counter doublers in the deck Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider / Doubling Season / Branching Evolution / Strionic Resonator.

Managorger Hydra = Another sneakily good card in the deck. Can easily get out of hand if left alone. Also pairs really nicely with our other counter doublers in the deck Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider / Doubling Season / Branching Evolution.

Mycoloth = Similar to Iridescent Hornbeetle, but not quite as good since we have to wait until our upkeep to get the trigger. Even still this is a great card in the deck and pairs nicely with Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider / Doubling Season / Branching Evolution / Spark Double / Strionic Resonator.

Strionic Resonator = Can be used to copy Ezuri, Claw of Progress's first ability giving us an additional experience counter, but is much more effective when copying his second ability. That way we can put experience counters on multiple creatures each turn. Will also allow us to copy a lot of other powerful triggered abilities that have already been mentioned.

Spark Double = Much like Strionic Resonator but arguably better since we'll be able to trigger both of Ezuri, Claw of Progress's abilities twice each turn. Obviously this can get out of hand quite quickly.

The Ozolith = Will help us protect our investments, or at least allow us to keep the counters. Really helps to rebuild in the event of a board wipe. Pairs nicely with Vorel of the Hull Clade and even better with Strionic Resonator. Having all three in play is silly. Can also be used with Momentous Fall to counteract the negative effect of loosing our counters.

Vorel of the Hull Clade = Another banger in the deck. Allowing us to double up counters at instant speed is a great effect. Pairs really well with our other counter doublers Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider / Doubling Season / Branching Evolution as well as the ozilith.

Circle of Dreams Druid / Itlimoc, Cradle of the Sun are essentially budget versions of Gaea's Cradle and will tap for huge amounts of mana in any creature based deck.

Gyre Sage / Selvala, Heart of the Wilds Both pair really nicely with out commander's ability to tap for huge amounts of mana.

Cold-Eyed Selkie / Fathom Mage / Momentous Fall / Inspiring Call Also pair really nicely with our commander's ability to draw us a large amount cards.

Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider = Double +1/+1 counters and double experience counters.

Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider / Doubling Season = Quadruple +1/+1 counters and double experience counters.

Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider / Doubling Season / Branching Evolution = Sextuple? +1/+1 counters and double experience counters.

Blighted Agent / Inkmoth Nexus / Plague Myr = Putting enough +1/+1 counters on any of these turns them into win-cons.

Miren, the Moaning Well / Momentous Fall / Shadowspear / The Great Henge = Lifegain in Simic? Heck yes life gain in Simic... three of these will also scale really well with the game, giving us more value with more +1/+1 counters.

Using untap effects like Fatestitcher / Kiora's Follower / Minamo, School at Water's Edge will allow us to abuse cards like Circle of Dreams Druid / Itlimoc, Cradle of the Sun / Gyre Sage / Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx / Selvala, Heart of the Wilds.

This deck generally wants to do two things: Play creatures and attack with creatures so having cards like Beast Whisperer / Cold-Eyed Selkie / Edric, Spymaster of Trest / Ohran Frostfang / Soul of the Harvest / Toski, Bearer of Secrets will compound and get out of hand really quickly. Even with two or three of these cards in play we can pretty easily draw half our deck in one game.

Arcane Denial / Fierce Guardianship / Heroic Intervention / Inspiring Call / Mana Drain / Swan Song = All help to protect our board in the event of a board wipe.

STRENGTHS

One of the biggest strengths this deck has is how quickly it can get out of hand if left alone. Simic is well known for being able to ramp and draw better than any other color combination, but with Ezuri, Claw of Progress at the helm, we're able to take that to a whole new level. Adding, doubling, and quadrupling counters on cards like Gyre Sage / Selvala, Heart of the Wilds / Cold-Eyed Selkie / Fathom Mage will give us huge bursts of value allowing us to tap for 10+ mana or draw 10+ cards. And that's being modest. It's not uncommon to draw over half our deck in a single game.

Another huge strength of this deck is how synergistic it is. There are so many cards that play off of each other in this deck and trigger multiple different things with a single cast or ability. Once we get going and start to develop a decent board state we can start accumulating value at an exponential rate. This makes it easier and easier to break parity as the game goes on.

WEAKNESSES

Despite it's strengths this deck has weaknesses just like any other deck. We're playing a creature based deck where the main win-cons are mostly combat damage based. This makes us vulnerable to infinite combo strategies, direct damage strategies, and board wipes. In order to remedy these issues I've included a few counterspells, a small life gain package, and a couple cards that will give our creatures hexproof/ indestructible.

~~~Change is at the very core of evolution and without it, all creatures would look alike and behave the same way~~~

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24% Casual

76% Competitive

Top Ranked
Date added 6 months
Last updated 1 week
Legality

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Rarity (main - side)

15 - 0 Mythic Rares

54 - 0 Rares

11 - 0 Uncommons

6 - 0 Commons

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 3.34
Tokens Bird 2/2 U, Elf Druid 1/1 G, Experience Token, Insect 1/1 G, Plant 0/1 G, Saproling 1/1 G, Servo 1/1 C, Spider 1/2 G
Folders Uncategorized, Uncategorized
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