Magic the Gathering – Welcome the the first installment of Commander Corner a semi regular column discussing the EDH/Commander format for Magic the Gathering. In each installment I'll review a general and deck that I've built around them. For more information on how to play Commander please check out the official site.
Every Commander deck has to feature a general, this is a legendary creature and you can only include cards which match you general's color identity (the mana symbols on the card, in the cost or in the abilities) or are colorless.
The first general I'd like to talk about are the Sen Triplets, a legendary creature for the Alara Reborn expansion. This commander falls into my favorite color combination and the deck began its life as a token machine with Ertai, the Corrupted at the helm. In practice he was a bit annoying as a commander since the threat of counter magic can slow down games and I rarely was able to keep him on the table.
The deck primarily consists of my favorite cards in Blue, Black and White and is geared to deal with multiple threats. The general while fun isn't required to make the deck run and more or less acts as a surprise by taking threats from an opponents hand. What I like most about the Sen Triplets are the politics involved in using their abilities. Do you cast someones best creature, or use their board sweeper to mess with everyone? There's plenty of ways to use them without making the whole table angry.
Without further ado here's the list:
Commander: Sen Triplets
Creatures (25): Beloved Chaplain, Drift of Phantasms, Disciple of the Vault, Stormscape Familiar,
Silver Myr, Leaden Myr, Alloy Myr, Pride of the Clouds, Pulsemage Advocate, Teysa, Orzhov Scion,
Ambassador Laquatus, Mageta the Lion, Raven Guild Master, Abyssal Persecutor,
Phyrexian Metamorph, Arcum Dagsson, Mindleech Mass, Sharding Sphinx, Skeletal Vampire,
Memnarch, Stuffy Doll, Avatar of Woe, Sphinx Sovereign, Weathered Wayfarer, Wall of Souls
Planeswalkers (1): Jace Beleren
Artifacts (15): Proteus Staff, Orzhov Signet, Dimir Signet, Azorious Signet, Thopter Foundry,
Sol Ring, Witchbane Orb, Darksteel Forge, Mycosynth Lattice, Mask of Avacyn, Trepandation Blade,
Darksteel Plate, Umezawa's Jitte, Sword of the Meek, Bonehoard
Lands (35): Seat of Synod, Glacial Fortress, Volrath's Stronghold, Boreal Shelf, Jwar Isle Refuge, Drowned Catacomb, Azorius Chancery, Urza's Factory, Isolated Chapel, Creeping Tar Pit, Vault of Whispers, Orzhov Basilica, Academy Ruins, Command Tower, Sejiri Refuge, Arcane Sactum, Dromar's Cavern, Frost Marsh, Ghost Quarter, Bad River, Godless Shrine, Minamo, School at Water's Edge, Wanderwine Hub, Grand Coliseum, Ancient Den, Watery Grave, Hallowed Fountation, Dreadship Reef, Polluted Delta, (2) Island, (2) Swamp, (2) Plains
The deck has an artifact theme that works to eventually turn everything I control into an indestructible machine. Once Arcum Daggson gets online with a token maker I'm able to fish out all the pieces to protect my permanents and wipe the board.
The amount of tuck spells (spells that put a card back into the library, really effective ways to get rid of annoying generals) is necessary due to my play groups meta. There are a few decks in our group that revolve so heavily on the general that I like to be able to eliminate that threat when cards get out of hand (Doran, the Siege Tower; Niv-Mizzet).
Some of the better interactions in this deck are Stuffy Doll with Guilty Conscience, which is a great way to eliminate one player. I also like the Thopter Foundry, Sword of the Meek and Disciple of the Vault little combo, while it doesn't go infinite it is a nifty way to reduce a life total while padding your own.
There is also a minor milling theme, while it's not the best strategy against 99 card decks it is more painful given the singleton nature of the format. Trepandation Blade is a personal favorite as it triggers just by attacking, at the very least your mill out one card and get a slight bump, I have seen it go up to a +15 when a player is mana screwed though, which is funny when it happens. Raven Guild Master is nice because it exiles the cards which means no graveyard recursion shenanigans. Pulsemage Advocate works well with milling your opponent as you can give back those utility creatures that don't threaten your position but will wreck someone else at the table and bring back your own threat.
I've found Abyssal Persecutor to be a great choice as opponents who are in a bad spot like to keep you around for a bit longer as they can't lose while he's on the table.
I'm considering adding in Grand Arbiter Augustin IV as he combos with several parts of my deck to reduce my mana costs and hinder my opponents. Potentially I'll cut the Sphinx Sovereign to add him in. So far the Sphinx has only attracted a ton of kill spells when he hits the table so I'm not sure if he's worth keeping in.