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Musashi used 2 swords? Hold my sake!

Commander / EDH* Counters Mono-Green Voltron



"The only reason a warrior is alive is to fight, and the only reason a warrior fights is to win. Otherwise, why be a warrior?" - Miyamoto Musashi

Why Isao, Enlightened Bushi?

If you take a look at my other decks, apart from my most competitive deck Talrand, Father of Drakes they are all casual and with less usual commanders, because that's what I like to build, thematic stuff or pick less seen commanders and try to do something with them. So when I did my Victory or Seppuku deck, with Toshiro Umezawa as the commander, I wanted to make a deck with a samurai leading it, but as I improved the deck it shifted from a deck centered around him for a reanimator kind of deck where Toshiro just allows me to also play instants from the graveyard and sometimes he is a win-con by commander damage, so the deck is not really focused around him anymore, he is just an extra piece in it. I love the deck and he is the deck I play with the most but it didn't satisfy my desire of having a deck really built around a samurai, where he is the center piece, so I decided to take a look at the other few legendary samurai.

When I saw Isao, Enlightened Bushi I dismissed him as a good samurai card because his most interesting hability, the regenerate, is focused on a tribal deck BUT he is the only green samurai, which makes no sense... But then I looked again and realized that, obviously, he can use it on himself and the idea popped in my mind of doing a voltron with him. I tried to find lore about him but there isn't much, from the little there is about him he reminded me a lot of Miyamoto Musashi, specifically when Musashi spent 4 years alone in the woods seeking to improve his technique, so that also motivated me to try and do a deck with him.

Now, without the white in the deck it lacks a lot of the good things for voltron, but in green you can do well enough. Because Isao, Enlightened Bushi can regenerate that means he is hard to remove from the game, and as such going for a counters strategy is viable, so that's what I decided to go with. Also in green there is plenty of ramp etc, so I am also trying to use that with Blackblade Reforged and similar effects. Another thing that green offers aswell are Fog effects which are necessary to protect myself, due to the lack of blockers.

I'm really happy with how the deck turned out, it isn't the strongest obviously, but it is fun and has quite a decent amount of flavour which I enjoy, the deck kinda has a story. For those who don't know Isao worked for Konda, Lord of Eiganjo and after some time he left to the forest (hence being green). Konda didn't like this so he sent some of his other samurai to hunt him down. So, playing this deck feels like you are Isao fighting off the other guys in the forest, using the fogs in it to blind his enemies, hide, dodge attacks, etc... And also using other powers of nature to become stronger (in the form of counters).

All help would be appreciated, I would really like to make this deck as strong as possible, so that it can be on par with the regular commander deck.


My other samurai decks:

P.S. I'm also thinking about building a deck with Fumiko the Lowblood. I had an interesting concept that would work very well with her, the problem is that she would need to be Boros for it to work, sadly she is mono-red...


Updates Add

After some play I noticed the deck is pretty fast and can swing for a lot of damage quickly, but due to that 2 problems emerge.

  • 1st - I run out of hand pretty quickly, most times after playing Isao and pumping him up I would be playing top deck until I got some draw, but took too long usually;

  • 2nd - Due to how fast I can do a lot of damage I also become a targeted quickly and I was lacking blockers/protection so I would usually die after killing 1 opponent, sometimes even before I could do it.

Due to these 2 problems I had to include fog effects and more card draw in the deck, in order to do that I had to cut in some of the pump cards, I tried to cut on the weakest ones the deck seems to look better now, but again only after some playtesting I can find out.


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Top Ranked
  • Achieved #10 position overall 7 months ago
Date added 7 months
Last updated 5 months
Exclude colors WUBR

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 2.98
Tokens 5/5 Wurm, 3/3 Beast, 1/2 Spider
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