This entry is part 7 of 23 in the series The Alpha Build


by William

This week is a tale of tragedy, frustration, and salty tears.






Deck List

There are three measures by which I want to improve this deck: Power, Card Advantage, and Presence.

We certainly lack Power and Presence, but this was a good week for Card Advantage. Land Tax was the MVP, drawing us almost the entirety of our lands which helped support our late game when we needed massive amounts of mana to power Avacyn’s shields. But the clutch play came about because we had a new weapon in our removal.


Inheritance, Reinforcements, Errand of Duty, Reprisal, Sustaining Spirit, Exile, Kjeldoran Outpost, Thawing Glaciers, Sol Grail

Reprisal saved our ass from a Dead-Eye Navigator infinite mana combo. Truly cheap removal is king in tight situations like the ones we seem to constantly get into.

The other additions are more hole-fillers than anything else right now, even if they are fantastic. Exile is certainly a card we desperately needed. It’ll be interesting to see what sort of impact Kjeldoran Outpost has on our board presence.


Icatian ScoutDeath WardD’Avenat ArcherWitch HunterEnduring RenewalDivine InterventionUrza’s TowerUrza’s MineUrza’s Power Plant

The cards we took out this week are just….fiddly. I’m starting to develop a better idea of the bare minimum presence a card needs to have to survive in CMDR these days, and none of these guys have it.

This does not bode well for our creatures at all. If this week helped me realize anything it’s that we’re only using our banding powers to protect Avacyn on defense and offense. Banding is an ability that gets better when you have more cards with that power. We’re not seeing nearly enough because MTGO stifles our capacity to play as many as we would if this were a paper list.

To that end, we need to find better cards at protecting Avacyn. The banding creatures are staying in for now, but as better cards are found they’ll be rotated out. If they’re not protecting Avacyn, they’re not doing anything relevant at all, and that’s incredibly sad.

Next week we’ll be going into the second age of design with Mirage! This will be the first set that really designs around mechanics rather on a card by card basis. This will be it, no more longing for cards that were never ported to MTGO. Everything is here from here on out. Let’s head to the next stage together!

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