The Great EDH Challenge: Glint-Eye – Max Eleven Bad Girls

Decklist: https://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/max-eleven-bad-girls/


Power Level: 8.75

Happy Halloween!

When I made this deck, Max and Eleven were unique cards, and the Universe Within cards did not yet exist. Thus, I will refer to them as the commanders, despite them being “subtitled” cards now.

This is not a Stranger Things themed deck, despite the commanders. I also made this deck before Season 4 came out, so it has a bit of extra meaning now, so that’s neat. In any case, this is my all female deck, to compliment my Shirtless Studs deck. The theme of the deck revolves around “bad” girls, aka cards that depict cool, powerful, or just sinister females. All my nonland, non-artifact cards prominently feature a female in their art except for one card, [[Sea Gate Restoration]], due to it synergizing perfectly with Eleven. Liliana is featured prominently in the deck, since she is “bad” in both the cool way and the sinister way.

Eleven and Max don’t work particularly well together, as they synergize with two different play styles. However, it is because of their differences that the deck is highly versatile. Max having haste lets her aggressively come out and put pressure on player life totals and early-game planeswalkers. I am rarely casting two spells in the early and mid game, but she does generate clues later in the game, and can untap very useful creatures like [[Bloom Tender]] and [[Cormela, Glamour Thief]]. Eleven on the other hand is the haymaker. She attacks well AND she blocks well. In the mid game, she is oftentimes a Phyrexian Arena that deals 3 commander damage to an opponent. But in the late game, Eleven casts me into big spells like [[Rise of the Dark Realms]] that oftentimes lead to game-winning combos.

This is a dynamic deck that does a bit of everything in order to win. I usually win utilizing a random-oriented combo utilizing [[Arcane Bombardment]] and [[Time Warp]], which can be assembled with the numerous tutors in the deck. However, this usually doesn’t happen until 8+ turns into the game, so we will spend the early and late game controlling the board and putting pressure on our opponents. Ramping with signets and playing Max and Eleven is a good way to spent the early game. Getting off a turn four [[Culling Strike]] into another spell is usually very powerful, as well as putting down value engines like [[Necropotence]] and [[Rhystic Study]]. Tutoring makes the deck very toolbox-y, getting us a number of specific forms of removal when we need it, like [[Prismari Command]] or [[Assassin’s Trophy]].

One of the most powerful cards in this deck is [[Mizzix’s Mastery]]. I’d never played with it before, but it can be borderline broken. I usually cast [[Final Parting]], getting a big spell like [[Aminatou’s Augury]] and Mizzix’s Mastery. Casting an eight mana spell that can get you over 10 mana in other spells for four mana is pretty awesome. Top-decking Mizzix’s Mastery in the late game with a graveyard full of goodies is a true joy. I love the card so much.

This is a very fun deck to play, and wins most of the time against a wide variety of other types of decks. WotC making Eleven a Four mana 3/5 is oftentimes a head-scratcher to a lot of people I play with, but I’ve got no complaints. If you like attacking, destroying things, tutoring, and taking extra turns, then this is definitely the deck for you!

The Great EDH Challenge: Ink-Treader – Thrasios and Bruse’s Shirtless Studs

Decklist: https://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/shirtless-studs-thrasios-and-bruse


Power Level: 6.1

The first of my 4-color decks is one with a theme that is very near-and-dear to me. Although the best of them are in black, I decided to go with a shirtless men theme for this one. It was even more of a definite choice when I realized that both Bruse Tarl and Thrasios are shirtless! When I realized that, I felt that my decision to make this deck was divinely-ordained! Haha, but anyway, yeah, this is a deck where each non-artifact and non-land card depicts a shirtless male character.

This deck has a wide mix of cards, but there are two main themes to it; Beatdown and Pillow-fort-y Control. I guess some would call it a Midrange deck, but I have never been too clear about what midrange actually is. In any case, this deck can prevent us from being clobbered by making it harder for our enemies to attack us via interaction and tax effects. It can also straight up clobber our enemies with big, value-generating creatures. It is a bit janky, but that arises more from the gimmick of requiring shirtless hotties on so many of the cards.

We spend the early game setting up, doing things like ramping and protecting ourselves. Playing Thrasios early is usually the best bet, because he can make our draws better as we approach the mid-game. We also tend to play signets and small value-generating creatures like Orcish Lumberjack and Dryad of the Ilysian Grove in the early game. Expect to do very little in the first 4 turns, and spend that time sizing up your opponents so that you can decide what strategy you will be using in the later turns.

For the pillow-fort-aspect of the deck, we have a few interesting tools at our disposal. Collective Restraint and Ghostly Prison are the obvious pillow-fort cards. We also utilize interactive planeswalkers like Ajani Vengeant and Oko, Thief of Crowns to further keep pressure off of us. Oko is probably the best card in the deck, and the games this deck wins usually involve using Oko to turn off enemy commanders. Komainu Battle Armor is great at making threatening opponents attack people other than us, while Frozen Aether slows opponents and keeps hasty decks at bay. Balancing Act is a very interesting Balance-effect that can really save us when we fall far behind our opponents, or when one opponent gets really far ahead of everyone else.

And for the Beatdown-aspect of the deck, we have plenty of muscular studs to crush our opponents. Frost Titan and Inferno Titan do a lot of work when they land, and are absolute houses if they are able to attack a few times. It is a crime that there isn’t a version of Sun Titan that depicts him shirtless, but we make do. Ruric Thar, the Unbowed just shuts down entire archetypes that our opponents are playing while also being a very good attacker. Xenagos, God of Revels turbo-charges our team, especially after we play Bruse Tarl to give our biggest creature double strike and lifelink. Also, never underestimate the power of Garruk Wildspeaker‘s -4 to overrun everyone, especially since he can do it the turn after you play him. And lastly, an entwined Savage Beating is oftentimes enough to destroy at least one opponent when we have at least 3 big boys out.

This deck can be fun to play, but keep in mind that it isn’t much stronger than a precon. If you are playing in a high-power playgroup, this deck will not perform well enough to keep up. This is a slow deck whose win-condition involves attacking with creatures. There is only one infinite combo in this deck that can’t even be tutored for, involving Sage of Hours and Simic Ascendancy. I’ve never pulled it off before, probably because it takes a total of 19 mana to win with it. If you are fine with a silly low-powered deck that has a lot of variance between games, this is a great deck for you. Pull it out when you are playing with a bunch of new players for maximum enjoyment.

The Great EDH Challenge: Abzan – Kethis Black People

Decklist: https://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/kethis-black-people


Power Level: 6.5

Yes, I know that there aren’t actual “Black” people in MtG, but I did it. This is a deck featuring dark-skinned characters, many of which are legendary. And hey, there is one actual Black person in the deck; Michonne, Ruthless Survivor!

The rule is if the creature or creatures are humanoid, there has to be a dark-skinned person featured prominently within the card art. In regards to that rule, there are two cards that some may be a bit torn about. Ob Nixilis Reignited in his Secret Lair art looks pretty black, especially when you look at his facial features, though I know that he was portrayed as a white character when he was human. Captain Sisay is quite the redbone, and many I have played with don’t see her as dark-skinned persay, but she is too good to pass up in this deck. Heck, she is Jamuraan, which is basically Dominaria’s Africa, so yeah.

This deck plays much like a precon; we simply play our cards and hope that we can win somehow. There aren’t any obvious combos or anything that high-powered, just a bunch of random cards that are a mix of interaction, value, and threats. Humorously enough, the most powerful card in the deck is probably Peacekeeper. There have been numerous games in which she has effectively stopped all combat for 10+ turns, simply because my opponents couldn’t find a way to get rid of her simple 1/1 body. She can really help us build up our board state without fear of being overwhelmed by our opponents. And hey, we can always sac her on our upkeep so that _we _can then attack.

There are many planeswalkers in this deck, and they tend to put in a great deal of work. Kaya the Inexorable both protects our creatures (such as Peacekeeper) and removes problem nonland permanents. Her ult is stellar in our legends-matter deck, and can be gotten too relatively quickly. Vivien, Monsters’ Advocate is a house who just does it all. She can tutor up creatures (such as Peacekeeper) onto the battlefield, and also make versatile 3/3’s that can be defensive and offensive threats. Kaya, Ghost Assassin can practically o-ring a commander each turn, essentially eliminating commander-dependent decks.

This deck mainly wins by assembling a board of sheer value, then overrunning our opponents. Our planeswalkers definitely help with that, but there are other ways to do so in our deck. Mangara, the Diplomat is phenomenal card draw, especially in the mid-to-late game. Sarulf, Realm Eater is removal-on-a-stick, especially against tokens. Crovax, Ascendant HeroAscendant Evincar, and Kaervek, the Spiteful are all mini Elesh Norns that can hose many go-wide decks.

All in all, this is an original deck that offers a more casual form of play. I always get humorous comments and compliments on this one, mainly because of its silly gimmick. It also harkens back to a day when people made EDH decks to show off their style, not so much their winning ability. Though I must admit, this deck is deceptively powerful, despite being a themed deck. I know many won’t put this together and play it, as it is admittedly jank-city, but I appreciate anyone who can look it over and appreciate what I tried to do. 😀

The Great EDH Challenge: Azorius – Time & Space ~ Teferi x Venser

Decklist: https://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/time-space-teferi-x-venser


Power Level: 6.5

So err…I ship Teferi and Venser. Yes, yes, I know…it is a remnant of my LiveJournal days. 😀

This deck is a love letter to my favorite Planeswalkers, Teferi and Venser. This is a theme deck that revolves around these 2 characters, that tells a fanfiction love story, haha. I use Raff because he is what I’d imagine their son would look like. This deck has been through a lot of changes; from a combo deck, to a superfriends deck, to a control deck. I feel that UW control is where both Teferi and Venser work best, so that is the final archetype I have decided on.

This is a control deck that seeks to use card draw, removal, and a few planeswalkers to help us survive into the late game. In the late game, we usually win with Approach of the Second Sun , sometimes taking an extra turn with Nexus of Fate to allow us to dig for Approach and cast it again. The deck is modeled a bit after the Dominaria-Standard deck that also used Approach to win. Planeswalkers like Teferi, Hero of Dominaria and Karn, Scion of Urza generate value for us as we control the mid-game, while Venser, the Sojourner flickers powerful permanents like Coveted Jewel and Elspeth Conquers Death for even more value.

Counterbalance is a pet card that usually just puts a bit of pressure on our opponents. We can tutor for it with Muddle the Mixture , and it works very well with Sensei’s Divining Top and Scroll Rack . I have had opponents scoop from me randomly revealing and successfully countering a game-winning play they were going to make. it is a card I like more in Legacy, but it has its uses here. Venser’s Journal is also a pet card in the deck. It serves the purpose of unifying the theme of the deck with my seedy origins as a LiveJournaler…hehe!

There is one combo in the deck, involving all lands. It fits the theme of Time and Space, as it allows for infinite turns (time) using lands (space).

Nesting Grounds Karn’s Bastion Magosi, the Waterveil = Infinite Turns

This combo is a bit convoluted, and Magosi is the only piece that doesn’t synergize with anything else in my deck. It starts by putting an eon counter on Magosi, requiring us to skip our next turn. We then move that eon counter onto another land with Nesting Grounds, and then use Karn’s Bastion to proliferate that counter. Now that we have 2 eon counters, we can use Nesting Grounds to move an eon counter back onto Magosi on our next turn. On each subsequent turn, we then activate Magosi to take an extra turn by removing that counter, returning Magosi to our hand, playing it as our land for turn, then proliferating the eon counter we still have on another land. During the extra turn, we move one of the eon counters on Magosi again, allowing us to repeat the previous steps to take infinite turns. Probably best to do this combo when we have a good planeswalker out, like Teferi, Hero of Dominaria , hehe.

This is a typical UW control deck, that is sure to prolong any game it is a part of. I can desperately cling to life for several turns, and oftentimes end up grabbing victory from the jaws of imminent defeat. However, this is a very grindy deck, and requires a great deal of “try-harding” to not just win, but to survive. If that playstyle appeals to you, then give this deck a try! You can just dismiss the cringey slash undertones that the deck has!