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Commander Archetypes: Aggro

Hello Ladies and Gentleman!
Welcome to Command Beacon, our column on Multiplayer Commander here on Eternal Magic!

In our last article I initiated a series about Commander archetypes. As said earlier, an archetype is basically the identity of a deck according to a previously ellaborated game plan. They can be separated within 4 general strategies of Magic: Aggro, Midrange, Control and Combo. Each strategy type develops in a different way according to the stage of the game (early game, mid-game and late game), which defines how each one behaves and determine the deck structure.

Today we’ll be focusing on the Aggro strategy decks and therefore the word of the day is: Aggression!

The goal of an aggro deck in general is to lower opponents’ lives from 40 to 0 as fast as possible. They advance quickly through the early game, tending to reach a minimum level that allows them to follow their overall strategy before other archetypes settle in and advance. In the early turns, they use a lot of mana ramps, being they a combination of mana rocks ([mtg_card]Sol Ring[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Mana Crypt[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Mana Vault[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Chrome Mox[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Mox Diamond[/mtg_card]), mana dorks ([mtg_card]Birds of Paradise[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Llanowar Elves[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Noble Hierarch[/mtg_card]) or ramps ([mtg_card]Farseek[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Nature’s Lore[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Cultivate[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Skyshroud Claim[/mtg_card]), as well as essential pieces to initiate the aggro process, like haste sources ([mtg_card]Lightning Greaves[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Fervor[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Concordant Crossroads[/mtg_card]), fast beating creatures ([mtg_card]Serra Ascendant[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Hunted Horror[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Managorger Hydra[/mtg_card]) or ways to increase the pressure made by your creatures while you develop ([mtg_card]Beastmaster Ascension[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Shared Animosity[/mtg_card] e [mtg_card]Blind Obedience[/mtg_card]) or even control elements (Example: [mtg_card]Goblin Bombardment[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Aura Shards[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Winter Orb[/mtg_card]). These elements will assure that you will advance the stages well-positioned and, the most important thing, before the opponents. Regardless of what is the Aggro archetype taken, the early game must be quick. If this goal fails, you’ll probably gonna loose, because the rest of the archetypes are more consistent in the other stages.

When entering the midgame, the good aggro deck aims to win. It is the moment when he casts the last pieces of his board and presents the winning conditions. This is the stage where a tribal deck casts a [mtg_card]Coat of Arms[/mtg_card], a strategy based on tokens attacks with more than 7 creatures, having a [mtg_card]Beastmaster Ascension[/mtg_card] on the table, or its commander becomes huge enough to sweep opponents off the table, 1 by 1, by engaging in extra combats. It is also a fragile stage, where some plays can ruin all of its previous construction. A well fit [mtg_card]Wrath of God[/mtg_card] before the fatal attack, a [mtg_card]Cyclonic Rift[/mtg_card] returning his mana rocks and dorks at the end of the previous turn to his plan of casting a [mtg_card]Craterhoof Behemoth[/mtg_card], a punctual removal on an enchantment or artifact essential to the attack, or even a simple [mtg_card]Maze of Ith[/mtg_card] on your commander if it is unprotected.

The last stage is usually where the aggro decks are most deficient. In exchange for speed in the early and midgame, they lose consistency in the late game. They are strategies that run out, without what we call “gas”, not being able to renew resources in the same efficiency of a control deck, for example, and, if they came from a weakened midgame, they will hardly be able to return to the game and compete in equality with other strategies. In addition, comparatively, their cards tend to become less impacting at this stage of the game, with the possible exception of a Big Aggro, where opponents can respond effectively and easily to their game and surpass their threats with a higher threat than theirs.

In short, good Aggro decks are explosive, but inconsistent. And this is further aggravated by what I pointed out in the previous article: players start with 40 hit points in a multiplayer format with tables averaging 4 players, turning 120 points of damage (or 63 points of commander’s damage) the ungrateful target of the aggressive decks. Among the 4 main strategies, Aggro is the most fragile. Either you grow fast and win very hard or you probably lose. That simple.

Before entering the aggressive archetypes, one last point. The standard business is to cause damage, but it’s worth remembering that life is only one of the resources that can be mined to win and curiously it is worth mentioning that even some mill decks (putting cards from the library to the graveyard or even exile them), depending on their constitution, may be considered aggressive decks if they have a behavior similar to that described in the different stages. An example would be this strategy, led by [mtg_card]Mirko Vosk, Mind Drinker[/mtg_card].

Aggro Archetypes

Linear Aggro

Like most aggressive decks, a Linear Aggro has a lot of creatures, which usually have low individual quality. But the great secret behind this archetype lies in building great synergies between your cards, creating a hostile table very quickly. Each card can complement the other, creating cohesion between the deck components and thus, powerful effects.

To build a good Linear Aggro, you should note 2 rules:
Make sure the synergies you’re aiming for are worth it. There are cases where you extract less value from a whole set of cards than just a good card by itself. Betting on strategies like a sliver tribal with [mtg_card]Sliver Legion[/mtg_card] or winning through Infect damage on a deck led by [mtg_card]Saskia the Unyielding[/mtg_card] certainly can be worth the investment. But a tribal of Dwarves and Vehicles with [mtg_card]Depala, Pilot Exemplar[/mtg_card], is worth it? Or Werewolves, commanded by [mtg_card]Ulrich of the Krallenhorde[/mtg_card]? When analyzing the set of cards that integrate them and how you could build these strategies, we see that the only reward is the fun in piloting an unusual, but reasonable deck, at best.

– Regardless of what you’re planning to use to create cohesion, remember that it’s still an aggressive deck. Therefore, observe the casting cost of your spells, which needs to be low, and see if your mana base suits them. There’s no use in creating a Linear Aggro that stars to think about hitting hard around turn 7, when a doubtful card like [mtg_card]Necromantic Selection[/mtg_card], with a CMC of 7, wipes up your game completely, just by playing a land per turn and casting this card. You’re playing against your opponents, not traffic cones.

When fighting against a Linear Aggro, remember that it presents the typical weaknesses of Aggro, like board wipes and very defensive strategies (like [mtg_card]Propaganda[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Ghostly Prison[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Ensnaring Bridge[/mtg_card]). Besides, by understanding where the lies the pillars that create the deck’s sinergy, it becomes much easier to explore its vulnerabilities. Take down the pillars and all the strategy falls apart. The deck strongly depends on haste? Remove this source from your oponnents. It depends on key-pieces to add a lot of mana, like [mtg_card]Priest of Titania[/mtg_card]? Kill it! By understanding your strenghts you’ll consequently understand your weak spots.

Examples of commanders that might fit in a Linear Aggro: [mtg_card]Saskia the Unyielding[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Sliver Legion[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Titania, Protector of Argoth[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Edric, Spymaster of Trest[/mtg_card].

As a reference deck, I bring a classic tribal monogreen.

[deck]Deck – Ezuri, Renegade Leader (Linear Aggro)
Commander
1 Ezuri, Renegade Leader

Creatures
1 Ambush Commander
1 Arbor Elf
1 Argothian Elder
1 Bane of Progress
1 Birchlore Rangers
1 Boreal Druid
1 Copperhorn Scout
1 Craterhoof Behemoth
1 Dwynen’s Elite
1 Elvish Archdruid
1 Elvish Harbinger
1 Elvish Mystic
1 Elvish Pioneer
1 Elvish Visionary
1 Fyndhorn Elves
1 Gaea’s Herald
1 Glistener Elf
1 Heritage Druid
1 Imperious Perfect
1 Joraga Treespeaker
1 Joraga Warcaller
1 Karametra’s Acolyte
1 Llanowar Elves
1 Lys Alana Huntmaster
1 Metallic Mimic
1 Priest of Titania
1 Quirion Ranger
1 Reclamation Sage
1 Regal Force
1 Scryb Ranger
1 Seeker of Skybreak
1 Skyshroud Poacher
1 Timberwatch Elf
1 Temur Sabertooth
1 Viridian Corrupter
1 Viridian Joiner
1 Wirewood Channeler
1 Wirewood Hivemaster
1 Wirewood Symbiote

Artifacts
1 Emerald Medallion
1 Mana Crypt
1 Paradox Engine
1 Sol Ring
1 Staff of Domination
1 Thousand-Year Elixir
1 Umbral Mantle
1 Winter Orb

Enchantments
1 Concordant Crossroads
1 Earthcraft
1 Elvish Guidance

1 Hall of Gemstone
1 Song of the Dryads
1 Survival of the Fittest

Sorceries
1 Eldritch Evolution
1 Genesis Wave
1 Green Sun’s Zenith
1 Natural Order
1 Shamanic Revelation
1 Sylvan Offering
1 Sylvan Tutor
1 Triumph of the Hordes

Instants
1 Beast Within
1 Benefactor’s Draught
1 Chord of Calling
1 Crop Rotation
1 Glimpse of Nature
1 Heroic Intervention
1 Krosan Grip
1 Worldly Tutor

Lands
1 Ancient Tomb
1 Cavern of Souls
1 Deserted Temple
23 Forest
1 Gaea’s Cradle
1 Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx
1 Wirewood Lodge
1 Yavimaya Hollow[/deck]

On the example list, we have a typical elfball: cast a lot of elves, fill up your table, make a lot of mana and strenghten yor creatures for a fatal attack. The key-pieces are the mana-generating elves like [mtg_card]Priest of Titania[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Elvish Archdruid[/mtg_card], which generate an oppressive amount of mana when you have a lot of elves in play. Some untapping sources are added too, like [mtg_card]Quirion Ranger[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Wirewood Symbiote[/mtg_card], and with that you can activate the commander’s ability many times ([mtg_card]Ezuri, Renegade Leader[/mtg_card]), which, in fact, it’s like you cast a lot of [mtg_card]Overrun[/mtg_card] in a single turn. [mtg_card]Craterhoof Behemoth[/mtg_card] can also set up the grand finale. Besides all that, it’s interenting to notice that there are some little control elements, like [mtg_card]Beast Within[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Song of the Dryads[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Winter Orb[/mtg_card] (outstanding while a great part of the generated mana comes from your creatures). Alternate ways to win are presented with the infinite mana combos, which ends up by raising infinitely the power from our elves: any creature that generates a lot of mana and [mtg_card]Umbral Mantle[/mtg_card]/[mtg_card]Staff of Domination[/mtg_card] (which even allows infinite life and drawing of the whole deck). Another infinite mana combo is [mtg_card]Temur Sabertooth[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Wirewood Symbiote[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Priest of Titania[/mtg_card] or another big mana generator.

Swarm

Like the name says, the ideia is to create a true swarm. The archetype is focused on creating a critical mass of creatures, usually low power tokens. Here the quantity speaks louder than quality. Cards that put a lot of creatures in play are vital in this kind of deck, like [mtg_card]Avenger of Zendikar[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Bitterblossom[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Siege-Gang Commander[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Secure the Wastes[/mtg_card], as well as effects that maximize the production of hordes: [mtg_card]Anointed Procession[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Parallel Lives[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Doubling Season[/mtg_card].

With this mob, we must abuse from effects like: [mtg_card]Goblin Bombardment[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Aura Shards[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Earthcraft[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Impact Tremors[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Skullclamp[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Ashnod’s Altar[/mtg_card], among many other options. These cards are important to impose presence on the table, extract value from creatures and to administrate things until reaching ideal conditions for the victory, by utilizing effects that raise them in oppressive levels, like [mtg_card]Beastmaster Ascension[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Craterhoof Behemoth[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Rage of Tears[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Shared Animosity[/mtg_card].

Beyond the tactics against Aggro decks in general, to stop a Swarm, prevent that it builds up a massive board. Board wipes are efficient, but continous effects that kill small creatures are catastrophic: [mtg_card]Night of Soul’s Betrayal[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Spreading Plague[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Aether Flash[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite[/mtg_card] itself. Some ways to stop the abusing of effects that trigger when permanents enter the battlefield can be stopped with [mtg_card]Torpor Orb[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Hushwing Gryff[/mtg_card].

Examples of commanders that might fit in a Swarm: [mtg_card]Ghave, Guru of Spores[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Purphoros, God of the Forge[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Tana the Bloodsower[/mtg_card] & [mtg_card]Bruse Tarl, Boorish Herder[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Rhys the Redeemed[/mtg_card].

For a reference deck, the goblin king and crowd agitator.

[deck]Deck – Krenko, Mob Boss (Swarm)
Commander
1 Krenko, Mob Boss

Creatures:
1 Foundry Street Denizen
1 Frenzied Goblin
1 Goblin Chieftain
1 Goblin Chirurgeon
1 Goblin King
1 Goblin Lackey
1 Goblin Lookout
1 Goblin Matron
1 Goblin Piledriver
1 Goblin Recruiter
1 Goblin Sharpshooter
1 Goblin Sledder
1 Goblin Soothsayer
1 Goblin Tinkerer
1 Goblin Vandal
1 Goblin Warchief
1 Grenzo, Havoc Raiser
1 Ib Halfheart, Goblin Tactician
1 Imperial Recruiter
1 Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker
1 Legion Loyalist
1 Marton Stromgald
1 Metallic Mimic
1 Mogg Raider
1 Mogg War Marshal
1 Moggcatcher
1 Ogre Battledriver
1 Purphoros, God of the Forge
1 Sensation Gorger
1 Siege-Gang Commander
1 Skirk Fire Marshal
1 Skirk Prospector
1 Sparksmith
1 Spikeshot Elder
1 Warren Instigator
1 Zealous Conscripts

Artifacts
1 Chrome Mox
1 Coat of Arms
1 Eldrazi Monument
1 Hammer of Purphoros
1 Lightning Greaves
1 Mana Crypt
1 Mana Vault
1 Mox Diamond
1 Obelisk of Urd
1 Ruby Medallion
1 Skullclamp
1 Sol Ring
1 Thornbite Staff
1 Thousand-Year Elixir
1 Throne of the God-Pharaoh

Enchantments
1 Blood Moon
1 Breath of Fury
1 Emblem of the Warmind
1 Fervor
1 Goblin Bombardment
1 Impact Tremors
1 Mass Hysteria
1 Quest for the Goblin Lord
1 Shared Animosity

Sorceries
1 Reforge the Soul
1 Shattering Spree
1 Wheel of Fortune

Instants
1 Brightstone Ritual
1 Chaos Warp
1 Tears of Rage

Lands
1 Ancient Tomb
1 Cavern of Souls
1 Command Beacon
1 Gemstone Caverns
1 Hall of the Bandit Lord
1 Hanweir Battlements
25 Mountain
1 Mutavault
1 Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx[/deck]

The deck behaves in a somewhat linear fashion, casting low-cost goblins that might have some use in delaying opponents ([mtg_card]Sparksmith[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Goblin Tinkerer[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Goblin Vandal[/mtg_card]) or accelerating our game ([mtg_card]Goblin Lackey[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Warren Instigator[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Skirk Prospector[/mtg_card]), with their presence being essential at the midgame, for accelerating the creating of tokens with [mtg_card]Krenko, Mob Boss[/mtg_card] ability, capable of creating monstruous quantities of goblins. To ensure efficiency, the deck counts with several ways to grant haste for our armies and, especially, for the commander: [mtg_card]Goblin Chieftain[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Goblin Warchief[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Fervor[/mtg_card], etc. With an enough amount of goblins you just have to end the game with [mtg_card]Shared Animosity[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Tears of Rage[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Coat of Arms[/mtg_card] or a Krenko activation with [mtg_card]Purphoros, God of the Forge[/mtg_card] in play.

Big Aggro

Play big. Very big. This is the premise of a Big Aggro. Since opponents have more life, we need to deal more damage. The tool for this? More power. Do the creatures of an aggro deck have little impact? Wrong. Here we have the most impressive creatures of the format: [mtg_card]Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Iona, Shield of Emeria[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Kozilek, Butcher of Truth[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Balefire Dragon[/mtg_card], among many huge creatures.

To not only watch opponents play while doing nothing, a Big Aggro needs ways to circumvent the normal mana curve. You will never play equal to other archetypes if you do not present your threats quickly and sharply. The most common way is to skip steps in your curve, using various forms of ramps, be they spells, creatures or artifacts. If you play only 1 mana source per turn (a land), you will be left behind. In practice, it is necessary to jump from turn 1 to turn 3 (by using [mtg_card]Birds of Paradise[/mtg_card] and playing a land in your next turn, for example), from 3 to 5 ([mtg_card]Kodama’s Reach[/mtg_card]) and from there on to cause fear in your opponent’s hearts, since every play may led up to a creature that can effectively take them out of the game. It is also possible to completely circumvent the mana costs by using alternate ways to put our monsters in the battlefield. Big Aggro strategies [mtg_card]Reanimate[/mtg_card] can be abused with a [mtg_card]Void Winnower[/mtg_card] on turn 1 or 2. Other ways, like with a [mtg_card]Kaalia of the Vaast[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Elvish Piper[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Show and Tell[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Sneak Attack[/mtg_card] are perfectly playable and dangerous.

And how to stop such brutality? Attack the ways the deck needs in order to play creatures. Remove the mana dorks, destroy the mana rocks, destroy the lands. Prevent alternative methods using the right tools. It’s a reanimator? Use a well-placed [mtg_card]Rest in Peace[/mtg_card] or a [mtg_card]Grafdigger’s Cage[/mtg_card]. Creatures, artifacts or enchantments that allows the controller to put them were they shouldn’t be? Destroy them as soon as possible. Sorceries? How about responding with a [mtg_card]Containment Priest[/mtg_card]? I guarantee that tears will roll down. Beyond that, they tend to have few attacking creatures, so ways to stop the attack are also effective, like [mtg_card]Maze of Ith[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Fog Bank[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Ensnaring Bridge[/mtg_card].

Examples of commanders that might fit in a Big Aggro: [mtg_card]Kaalia of the Vast[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Mayael the Anima[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Kresh the Bloodbraided[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Jalira, Master Polymorphist[/mtg_card]

To represent greatness, nothing better than a god.

[deck]Deck – Xenagos, God of Revels (Big Aggro)
Commander
1 Xenagos, God of Revels

Creatures
1 Acidic Slime
1 Azusa, Lost but Seeking
1 Balefire Dragon
1 Bane of Progress
1 Birds of Paradise
1 Courser of Kruphix
1 Deus of Calamity
1 Hellkite Tyrant
1 Hydra Omnivore
1 Inferno Titan
1 Lotus Cobra
1 Malignus
1 Nylea, God of the Hunt
1 Oracle of Mul Daya
1 Orcish Lumberjack
1 Pathbreaker Ibex
1 Phyrexian Hydra
1 Phyrexian Juggernaut
1 Putrefax
1 Reclamation Sage
1 Ruric Thar, the Unbowed
1 Sakura-Tribe Elder
1 Savage Ventmaw
1 Scourge of the Throne
1 Selvala, Heart of the Wilds
1 Shaman of Forgotten Ways
1 Siege Behemoth
1 Somberwald Sage
1 Spellbreaker Behemoth
1 Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger

Artifacts
1 Grafted Exoskeleton
1 Grim Monolith
1 Gruul Signet
1 Mana Crypt
1 Mana Vault
1 Mimic Vat
1 Sensei’s Divining Top
1 Sol Ring
1 Strionic Resonator
1 Thran Dynamo

Enchantments
1 Aggravated Assault
1 Blood Mist
1 Exploration
1 Gratuitous Violence
1 Greater Good
1 Lurking Predators
1 Sneak Attack
1 Sylvan Library

Sorceries
1 Blasphemous Act
1 Chandra’s Ignition
1 Cultivate
1 Green Sun’s Zenith
1 Kodama’s Reach
1 Rishkar’s Expertise
1 See the Unwritten
1 Seize the Day
1 Selvala’s Stampede
1 Skyshroud Claim
1 Sylvan Tutor

Instants
1 Berserk
1 Chord of Calling
1 Fatal Frenzy
1 Krosan Grip
1 Signal the Clans
1 Summoning Trap
1 Worldly Tutor

Lands
1 Ancient Tomb
1 Cinder Glade
1 Command Tower
1 Fire-Lit Thicket
8 Forest
1 Game Trail
1 Homeward Path
1 Kessig Wolf Run
8 Mountain
1 Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx
1 Raging Ravine
1 Rogue’s Passage
1 Rootbound Crag
1 Skarrg, the Rage Pits
1 Stomping Ground
1 Strip Mine
1 Taiga
1 Temple of the False God
1 Wasteland[/deck] [mtg_card]Xenagos, God of Revels[/mtg_card] is a perfect support on a Big Aggro deck and should be present on all decks of this archetype that have a Gruul (Red and Green) base. Provide  + X/+ X equal to its power and haste every combat for a target creature can always put a player potentially one step out of the game. So nothing better than always having him in the command zone. The list is a natural representative of the archetype, with many forms of acceleration and circumventing the high costs, casting the commander as quickly as possible, followed by various threats. In addition to acceleration, we use cards like [mtg_card]Selvala’s Stampede[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]See the Unwritten[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Summoning Trap[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Sneak Attack[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Lurking Predators[/mtg_card] as alternative ways for the mana cost. There are many monsters in the list, but some of them, with the help of Xenagos, can knock-down a player in a single blow: [mtg_card]Malignus[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Putrefax[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Phyrexian Hydra[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Phyrexian Juggernaut[/mtg_card]. Extra combats are also very damaging, for Xenagos ability grows each combat, so we get some profit out of [mtg_card]Aggravated Assault[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Seize the Day[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Scourge of the Throne[/mtg_card].

Voltron Aggro

The last archetype of the family is the Voltron Aggro. Instead of trying to cause 40 points of damage to each opponent, the magic lies in causing 21 commander points, so any life gain that could disrupt a typical aggro simply does not matter here. As a rule, the lists revolve around the commander, which will always be available, allowing you to cast it as quickly as possible and providing all the support needed for the aggression. Although there may be many similarities between a Voltron Aggro and a Voltron Control, the first is much more proactive than the second, with more support for the commander and is also faster, while the second is more concerned with keeping the table controlled and safe to be able to attack, building your game slowly.

Like the anime that names the archetype, several parts come together to form something unique and extremely powerful. Some tools of the Voltron Aggro are extra combats and double strike ability, but the main support comes in the form of equipment and auras: [mtg_card]Sword of Feast and Famine[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Umezawa’s Jitte[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Inquisitor’s Flail[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Fireshrieker[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Eldrazi Conscription[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Battle Mastery[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Ancestral Mask[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Ethereal Armor[/mtg_card], etc. In addition, forms of protection and evasion are fundamental to the viability of the strategy, for example [mtg_card]Swiftfoot Boots[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Gift of Immortality[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Hyena Umbra[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Madcap Skills[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Aqueous Form[/mtg_card]. It is important to note that there is a pattern to be observed in a good commander of this archetype: the power being equal to or greater than 7. And why this number? From 7, at worst and virtually unsupported, only 3 attacks are needed to eliminate a player. A commander with 6 of power would need 4 attacks, and considering 3 opponents, a total of 12 attacks, which can greatly delay the game plan. Obviously, this rule is not absolute and there are several smaller power commanders who have innate abilities that favor their use, whether it is an increase in power under certain conditions, double strike or significant support for auras and equipment.

Facing a deck of this archetype is relatively simple if you have the right tools and the strategy is very simple: prevent the commander from playing at any cost. [mtg_card]Nevermore[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Gideon’s Intervention[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Declaration of Naught[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Song of yhe Dryads[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Imprisoned in the Moon[/mtg_card] are extremely easy ways to deal with a Voltron. Mechanics that force the oponnent to sacrifice also tend to slow them down: [mtg_card]Innocent Blood[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Barter in Blood[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Fleshbag Marauder[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Sheoldred, Whispering One[/mtg_card]. All very common cards in a multiplayer field. Lastly, to stop the attacks are also an efficient way, and I highlight here again [mtg_card]Maze of Ith[/mtg_card], as well as [mtg_card]Kor Haven[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Edifice of Authority[/mtg_card] and, why not, [mtg_card]Angus Mackenzie[/mtg_card].

Examples of commanders that might fit in a Voltron Aggro: [mtg_card]Akiri, Line-Slinger[/mtg_card] & [mtg_card]Bruse Tarl[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Boorish Herder[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Atarka, World Render[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Uril, the Miststalker[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Rafiq of the Many[/mtg_card].

To conclude, the last deck is a monowhite led by a dwarf who arrived from Kaladesh to do some damage.

[deck]Deck – Sram, Senior Edificer (Voltron Aggro)
Commander
1 Sram, Senior Edificer

Creatures
1 Leonin Shikari
1 Mother of Runes
1 Puresteel Paladin
1 Restoration Specialist
1 Stoneforge Mystic

Artifacts
1 Batterskull
1 Chrome Mox
1 Cloud Key
1 Coldsteel Heart
1 Expedition Map
1 Fellwar Stone
1 Fireshrieker
1 Golem-Skin Gauntlets
1 Helm of Awakening
1 Helm of the Gods
1 Inquisitor’s Flail
1 Mana Crypt
1 Mana Vault
1 Marble Diamond
1 Masterwork of Ingenuity
1 Mox Diamond
1 Mox Opal
1 O-Naginata
1 Paradox Engine
1 Pearl Medallion
1 Sol Ring
1 Swiftfoot Boots
1 Sword of Feast and Famine
1 Sword of the Animist
1 Thought Vessel
1 Thran Dynamo
1 Torpor Orb
1 Umezawa’s Jitte

Enchantments
1 Banishing Light
1 Cage of Hands
1 Cartouche of Solidarity
1 Conviction
1 Darksteel Mutation
1 Daybreak Coronet
1 Duelist’s Heritage
1 Ethereal Armor
1 Flickering Ward
1 Gelid Shackles
1 Gift of Immortality
1 Grasp of Fate
1 Greater Auramancy
1 Gryff’s Boon
1 Hyena Umbra
1 Land Tax
1 Oblivion Ring
1 Oppressive Rays
1 Pacifism
1 Prison Term
1 Sage’s Reverie
1 Shielded by Faith
1 Sigarda’s Aid
1 Spirit Mantle
1 Unquestioned Authority

Sorceries
1 Armageddon
1 Idyllic Tutor
1 Open the Armory
1 Ravages of War
1 Replenish
1 Steelshaper’s Gift
1 Winds of Rath
1 Wrath of God

Instants
1 Abolish
1 Dispatch
1 Enlightened Tutor
1 Path to Exile
1 Rebuff the Wicked
1 Swords to Plowshares

Lands
1 Ancient Den
1 Buried Ruin
1 Command Beacon
1 Inventors’ Fair
1 Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx
19 Plains
1 Rogue’s Passage
1 Serra’s Sanctum
1 Strip Mine
1 Wasteland[/deck] [mtg_card]Sram, Senior Edificer[/mtg_card] is far from the ideal 7 for a Voltron Aggro commander, but has an unique ability that provides incredible support for the strategy. For 2 mana, he is a 2/2 creature that allows you to draw cards every time you cast an Equipment, Aura, or Vehicle spell. That way, even if it gets some response, it does not lose gas as easily as other aggressive decks and can be easily adapted to different builds, such as Voltron Control and Storm. The list as a whole has very low converted mana cost, stuffed with mana rocks, auras and equipment. Some of the auras, even though they are bad cards by themselves, work as punctual controls ([mtg_card]Pacifism[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Oppressive Rays[/mtg_card] for example) and with our commander we don’t get to lose a card in hand, for it gets renewed with a new draw. Some of the most powerful boosts on this list are [mtg_card]Umezawa’s Jitte[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Sword of Feast and Famine[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Helm of the Gods[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Ethereal Armor[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Batterskull[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Golem-Skin Gauntlets[/mtg_card]. Mention should be made of a very powerful card on this list: [mtg_card]Paradox Engine[/mtg_card]. With this amount of mana rocks, we can basically draw the whole deck with Sram in play, especially with auras like [mtg_card]Conviction[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Cage of Hands[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Flickering Ward[/mtg_card].

That’s all for today! Thanks for getting along until now. Next week we’ll enter one of the most diverse strategies in the format, Midrange. I hope you liked, see you next week and thank you!

About Mateus Nogueira

Professor da rede pública de ensino no Distrito Federal, formado em Ciências Biológicas, nerd multiclasse, já jogou e aprecia diversos formatos de Magic: the Gathering. É especialmente apaixonado pelo Commander em sua vertente multiplayer, sendo um infeliz sem alma, apreciador de Stax e Combos.

One comment

  1. muito bom artigo

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