Should I Keep Abzan Falconer in my Atraxa Deck?

Commander Deck Help forum

Posted on July 3, 2024, 9:12 p.m. by DemonDragonJ

I have a copy of Abzan Falconer in my Atraxa, Praetors' Voice EDH deck, because it is quite awesome to give flying to all of my creatures that have +1/+1 counters on themselves, but since that deck also contains both Akroma's Memorial and Elspeth, Sun's Champion, both of which can also grant flying, I wonder if I should replace that creature with another creature, such as Fertilid, Shapers of Nature, Zameck Guildmage, Steelbane Hydra, or Mindless Automaton, as all of those creatures use +1/+1 counters for various purposes.

What does everyone else say about this matter? Should I keep Abzan Falconer in my Atraxa deck, or replace it, with another creature? I certainly would appreciate your feedback.

Mortlocke says... #2

I think there are some better options out there for getting +1/+1 counters on creatures. One fairly recent card, Ozolith, the Shattered Spire I think you should consider in place of the Falconeer- it's lower to the ground, harder to remove, and provides a strong static effect that synergizes well with your +1/+1 counter theme.

July 4, 2024 3:34 p.m.

DemonDragonJ says... #3

Mortlocke, that card is very good, but the fact that its ability can be used only as a sorcery definitively hinders how useful it can be.

July 4, 2024 11:21 p.m.

Mortlocke says... #4

Keeping Abzan Falconer in mind, it's outlast ability is also at Sorcery speed - but can only target itself. Not to mention it can only trigger once a turn and adds 1 counter at a time. What are you looking for exactly? Is it a reliable means of getting +1/+1 counters on creatures? Or something with more speed/utility?

July 5, 2024 3:33 a.m.

DemonDragonJ says... #5

Mortlocke, I think that something with greater speed and utility would be very nice, such as Fertilid, Shapers of Nature, or Zameck Guildmage.

July 5, 2024 9:08 a.m.

Mortlocke says... #6

After looking at your deck there are a few ideas that cane to mind. I'd like to hear your takes on the following:

I apologize in advance if these are cards you've already omitted from your deck, or have previously considered. But these are just some cards that came to mind.

July 5, 2024 12:44 p.m.

DemonDragonJ says... #7

Mortlocke, all of those are excellent cards, but I am not certain about them, and I shall explain my reasons for feeling so about each one.

Mikaeus, the Lunarch has an ability that is very similar to Spike Weaver's first ability, and, while Spike Weaver's second ability is nice, I feel that it does not quite match the theme of the deck, and Spike Weaver also costs 4 mana, which would increase the mana curve of this deck.

I do not believe that this deck has quite a sufficient number of creatures with activated abilities to justify including Agatha's Soul Cauldron in the deck.

This deck does not have quite a sufficient focus on lands to justify including Felidar Retreat.

I feel that Hadana's Climb  Flip does not quite have a sufficient impact for this deck.

Again, all of those cards were excellent, so please do not think that I did not appreciate your suggestions.

As for the cards that I previously mentioned, I already have a copy of Fertilid in another deck, so, between Shapers of Nature and Zameck Guildmage, the guildmage has both a lower casting cost and a lower cost for using its ability, so I believe that that is the card that I shall I put into my Atraxa deck, to replace Abzan Falconer.

July 5, 2024 3:55 p.m.

Mortlocke says... #8

"I do not believe that this deck has quite a sufficient number of creatures with activated abilities to justify including Agatha's Soul Cauldron in the deck."

I have one rebuttal: Agatha's Soul Cauldron doesn't limit you to your own graveyard. There's also the added bonus of possibly preventing some nasty graveyard recursion. But changing subjects, there was a card in MH3 that I had to have in my own Atraxa build - Metastatic Evangel. Your deck, much like mine has a emphasis on creatures, so why not take advantage of that? It functions similarly to Inexorable Tide but lower to the ground and easier to remove. I definitely think it's at least worth trying for my deck, what about yours?

July 5, 2024 9:43 p.m.

DemonDragonJ says... #9

Mortlocke, that is definitely an excellent suggestion, so I wonder if it may be a good replacement for Abzan Falconer?

July 6, 2024 12:20 a.m.

Mortlocke says... #10

While goldfishing I've found that Metastatic Evangel warps games well into my favor especially after I have poison counters on my opponents. Artifacts like Everflowing Chalice and +1/+1 counters central to your deck's themes will see an equal benefit. The only unfortunate part is the Evangel's 1 toughness. Without additional protection this creature will be removed after you get 2 or 3 triggers of proliferation in a turn. Opponents tend to pick up on too much value pretty easily.

July 6, 2024 3:17 a.m.

Mortlocke says... #11

Sorry, I just realized I didn't really answer your question- Yes. I think Metastatic Evangel is a great upgrade from Abzan Falconer. Abzan Falconer asks for alot to gain little - for maybe flying. It can only place +1/+1 counters on itself at sorcery speed, and it needs to tap. It cannot target other creatures. Evangel gives all of your non-token creatures "When this creature enters the battlefield, Proliferate." This provides greater flexibility and can allow you to uptick planeswalkers, artifacts, and +1/+1 counters.

July 6, 2024 5:37 a.m.

DemonDragonJ says... #12

Mortlocke, actually, I have one other concern about Metastatic Evangel; my Atraxa deck contains only 24 creatures, and the evangel's ability does not trigger from itself, so how likely is it that I shall be able to use its ability very often in an average game?

July 6, 2024 9:12 a.m.

Mortlocke says... #13

You're at about 7% odds of drawing the card outright (according to tappedout's card odds calculator). However, with tutors that changes the odds considerably. But to fully take advantage of its ability well that depends on the average cmc of each creature, your manabase, and your card draw options. I'm afraid that'd be a hard question for me to answer. What I can say is that I run 20 creatures including the Evangel and I get plenty of value.

July 6, 2024 10:07 a.m.

DemonDragonJ says... #14

Mortlocke, that is very encouraging, so, just to clarify, you believe that an additional source of proliferation is more valuable than a card that uses +1/+1 counters for some other benefit?

July 6, 2024 4:27 p.m.

Mortlocke says... #15

Yes I do. Proliferation is very central to your deck and Metastatic Evangel is a very reliable source for triggers. Worst case scenario of you have no creatures in hand you could cast your commander and get a free Proliferation trigger before the second one. Also its a very inexpensive card - just a few cents to buy and try out for a few games. Or you could swap it in online for some gold fishing.

July 6, 2024 4:40 p.m. Edited.

DemonDragonJ says... #16

Mortlocke, that is very good, so I think that I shall put that into my Atraxa deck, and I thank you, for your suggestion.

July 6, 2024 6:53 p.m.

The best way to know whether to cut a card IMO is to simply play the deck with other people. If you have too much of one thing or not enough, or other versions of cards are better, you'll know what you like and don't like (what to cut). A lot of the game is ratios and cmc and what's "best" but at the end of the day, play the cards you like.

July 7, 2024 12:01 p.m.

Mortlocke says... #18

Goldberserkerdragon, what card would you suggest for DemonDragonJ's Atraxa deck? Specifically to replace Abzan Falconer.

July 7, 2024 4:34 p.m.

Mortlocke Interestingly arrogant question. If I wanted to suggest a card, I would have done so. Sometimes all the nitpicking and thinking doesn't need to happen. My specific suggestion here is that he plays the deck. The falconer is a good card for his Atraxa deck nonetheless.

July 7, 2024 5:02 p.m.

Mortlocke says... #20

Goldberserkerdragon, I was simply keeping on subject - no arrogance intended. I'm here to help my fellow magic player with a card - not talk down to random people on the internet.

July 7, 2024 5:13 p.m.

Mortlocke Well regardless if you are aware enough in age or not know that in the adult world, you were trying to put words in my mouth. Don't do that. If you claim no offense, then ditto. I saw this post randomly and merely suggested what I thought would be helpful from a different angle than just naming some cards. We get too caught up as builders of decks that we forget sometimes testing helps.

July 7, 2024 5:18 p.m.

DemonDragonJ says... #22

Goldberserkerdragon, please do not be rude, as Mortlocke was simply attempting to make conversation.

July 7, 2024 5:24 p.m.

DemonDragonJ No rudeness implied. Simply struck odd that someone was rude and asserted I change my suggestion matter. Is that not odd/rude? I was also confused why Mortlocke commented on that and not you. Either way, texting is no place haha. All's good, all's good. Test the deck my friend, you' find what you need ;)

July 7, 2024 5:30 p.m.

Gleeock says... #24

for the same CMC, Breena, the Demagogue gives you card draw & an easy +2/+2 (or +4/+4 draw 2) if 2 opponents have more life than another & you have 2 attackers. +4/+4 is ridiculous on Atraxa. That is only including your own potential attacks. I keep trying to sell Breena as a powerhouse on her own, but also in the "99" in many decks, especially counter decks. My own build with her is based around proliferate.

July 10, 2024 7:05 p.m.

Gleeock says... #25

IMO, having 4 player playtested a bunch of Atraxa (I playtest her as an opponent alot because she is such a common commander), I find the falconer to be a bit situational, maybe a little bit of a groan when I have the falconer. Falconer feels a bit between "win-more" to underwhelming for having built an army with +1/+1 counters, also considering the commander is often part of that army & doesn't really need double flying. I think the perk to 4-color +1/+1 counters is usually having a bunch of creatures become cumulatively better when powered up with counters... So flying on an already jacked creature usually feels a bit underwhelming to me. On the other hand, characteristics like: card draw, or more counter supplying are going to be handy at most points during a game.

All that to clarify why I think my suggestion above isn't that far out of left field.

July 10, 2024 7:17 p.m.

DemonDragonJ says... #26

Gleeock, thank you, for that suggestion, so I shall keep that card, in mind.

What do you think about Zameck Guildmage? I was also contemplating that card, as well.

July 10, 2024 8:20 p.m.

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