Pauper Commander analysis for Adventures in the Forgotten Realms

Magic: the Gathering

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Pauper Commander analysis for Adventures in the Forgotten Realms

In this article, I review some of the legendary uncommons from Adventures in the Forgotten Realms for Pauper EDH with some new lists!

By Beto Xavier, 07/20/21, translated by Romeu

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Finally, the latest Magic set, Adventures in the Forgotten Realms, was released. The new collection is all set in this almost infinite universe, created in the late 60's and which arrived at D&D in the mid 80's, to become one of the greatest sources of adventures, stories, characters and, of course, plenty of histories Virtually all formats received cards and for our beloved Budget format, the Pauper Commander, the set brought many historical characters, in addition to the wonderful dungeons, which we will be able to play in our Pauper EDH.

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We are going to list some of the best possible commanders for the PDH, bringing the thematic list of some commanders to help you in this new journey of good creatures and new mechanics, such as venturing into dungeons, which caused great commotion in Magic players who are also RPG fans; but in some cases I made notes about the commander, giving suggestions for possible decks, leaving the list to the reader's creativity! The lists were created by the french player DonDjanggo.
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Altogether there are 45 new uncommon creatures that you, Pauper EDH player, can use to build your deck. But if you already know me, you know that I like the combination of two or more colors, so I will list in this article creatures from each of the ten guilds, which in this case are all legendary and each has its peculiarities, and some of them interact with the new mechanics that the set brings.

The Commanders

Barrowin of Clan Undurr

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Our first commander on the list is an Orzhov, and right from the start we've already introduced a creature that explores one of Magic's new mechanics, the Dungeon, which consists of entering a dungeon and progressing through it and getting effects at each stage; advancing in the dungeon is possible with the cards that have the keyword or dictate to "venture into a dungeon". Upon entering the battlefield, this commander ventures into a dungeon, and because he is white, he can use

Ephemerate

to advance faster, allowing up to three advances in two turns, and of course, this same

Ephemerate

can serve as protection for the commander. If you don't have

Ephemerate

, another card that can trigger the Dungeon twice is

Delver's Torch

, an equipment that has the same effect as our general's ability. The commander's second ability is strong as well, as it allows, during the attack, the effect of unearth a creature with mana cost 3 or less if a dungeon has been completed in-game, which we've already seen isn't difficult for the deck. We can also put cards like

Exhume

in the deck to return higher cost creatures and some other cards that benefit from interaction with the graveyard, such as the

Tortured Existence

enchantment and thus allowing the manipulation of creatures in the graveyard, besides, of course, occasional removals, such as

Cast Down

and

Snuff Out

, as well as some discards to interact with opponents' hands, such as

Castigate

and

Duress

. We'll also have some draw options, in addition to

Bonder's Ornament

and the Monarchs

Thorn of the Black Rose

and

Palace Sentinels

, you can also draw with

Sign in Blood

and

Night's Whisper

, and to improve the use of these two, it is advised to use cards that gain some life, such as

Pristine Talisman

. As we can see, the deck will tend to control the game, stabilize the board and enter the dungeons in the middle of the game, gaining an advantage when the field is not so crowded.

Bruenor Battlehammer

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Bruenor Battlehammer

is a perfect commander for a game plan focused on equipment and all the possibilities it can offer. Mandatory equipment,

Whispersilk Cloak

and

Haunted Cloak

can be combined with others that add speed and aggression to the deck, such as

Greataxe

, which has a low cost and can exploit the commander's ability of equipping the first equipment each turn paying zero, in an attempt to make the commander a powerful and unbeatable bomb, able to defeat an opponent in just two turns.

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Zero cost equipment are welcome,

Accorder's Shield

is a good example. To run the deck, the red cards can help a lot, as there are many cards with access to the draw; but as non-blue draw cards always have a punishment, red punishes by discarding cards, such as

Faithless Looting

, so try to take advantage of these cards in the graveyard using flashback spells such as

Prismatic Strands

, a great card to defend yourself, or even

Swirling Sandstorm

, a good massive sweeper that depends on your graveyard.
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Farideh, Devil's Chosen

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This is another of the commanders that interact with one of the new mechanics, the one that rolls the dice to define how an action will unfold, just like in RPGs. This mechanic relies heavily on luck and randomness, so certainly some players might not like it, as well as others might like it a lot. Let's look at some cards we can use from this mechanic.
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As we can see, both creatures have an affordable and quite acceptable mana cost, and with fair effects. Red deals damage and blue helps manipulate the result, discarding the smaller one, helping trigger the commander's ability. Cards with common dice rolling mechanics may not be the strongest, but they can help move the deck, as well as offer extra fun to the games, and for this color combination,

Djinni Windseer

seems to be the most promising because despite its cost, Scry is guaranteeing, in addition to combining with other cards and repeating this effect, “Flickering” it with the format's Blink spells.

Contact Other Plane

combines very well with the aforementioned creature.

Gretchen Titchwillow

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Next, we have Simic, with a combination of abilities that is typical of these colors, drawing cards and ramping. It follows for the game plan to control until the combo comes. For this, support cards can be used, such as the cantrips

Ponder

and

Preordain

, some counterspells to protect your creatures and ensure that the combo works. For combos, we're going to use one of the best mechanics of the format, blink, and abusing

Cloud of Faeries

,

Peregrine Drake

,

Mnemonic Wall

,

Archaeomancer

and to close,

Ghostly Flicker

, infinite mana is guaranteed, and it adds other creatures, artifacts, and lands that have ETB, and

Sage's Row Denizen

can be the main wincondition. If you find it feasible, the player who is building this deck can place cards with Landfall, as the commander puts a lot of land in the field. Using plenty of lands is a good option too. Tutors are also needed to speed up the combo,

Drift of Phantasms

is one of the best.
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Hama Pashar, Ruin Seeker

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Hama Pashar, Ruin Seeker

is one of the other creatures that uses the Dungeon mechanic, causing Dungeon abilities to trigger one additional time each time it triggers. So in addition to the basic color cards, such as counterspells, cantrips, bounces, draw cards, and ramping artifacts, the deck will feature spells that venture into a dungeon. Some of these cards have common effects, with venturing as a bonus, so you might think that cards with choice or additional effects will be very useful, as we can see

Bar the Gate

, which in addition to countering, explores the new mechanics, and can enter in place of

Exclude

, as it counters creature for the same cost. The bonus effect is different, but it can be interesting, as well as

Ranger's Hawk

, which can only be used to trigger the dungeon, but is a good blocker against flying decks.

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Kalain, Reclusive Painter

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In this deck, we can explore bolder and more aggressive game plans, in addition to high-cost creatures, creating a forceful combat scene, as we can place many cards that create treasures.

Hoarding Ogre

comes from the new set with this proposal, and in addition to the commander creating the treasures, he still makes the other creatures come in stronger and can make the game more aggressive in your favor. This color combination also brings many removals of creatures and also direct damage, in addition to allowing you to draw cards. The list below shows this well, with targeted and mass removals, such as

Pestilence

, will hold the game, and subtract some opponents' life; the deck clears the field to enter with strong creatures and end the game quickly, giving opponents a lot of work to contain it.
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Krydle of Baldur's Gate

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This is the candidate for the best commander Pauper EDH in the new set, as for only two mana he has a good body, even if he dies to

Lightning Bolt

, not all creatures are capable of destroying him, not even

Fiery Cannonade

catches it. Also, his two abilities are excellent, and he can bring a deck with high synergy with Ninjutsu. Depending on the stage of the game, you can pay for the activated ability more than once, leaving the commander and creatures like

Ninja of the Deep Hours

unblockable, helping to trigger their abilities.

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We don't even need to talk too much about colors: draw plenty of cards, have many removals, evasive creatures, counterspells, some ways to gain life, and you can even add some cards that mill the opponent, making this a wincondition as well, one of them is with

Persistent Petitioners

.
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Shessra, Death's Whisper

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This color combination is excellent for forming some strategies, like aristocrats, which consists of taking advantage of creatures sacrificed or killed with creatures with persist and undying, like

Young Wolf

, and the commander's two abilities can help in that. The second abilities take advantage of this, acquiring card advantage, and can even combine with the elves, generating plenty of mana. Pauper's BG deck combos, like Burt Lancaster's Pauper Project X deck combo, are a good example of how interesting Aristocrats mechanics can be. His combo takes a creature with Persist,

Carrion Feeder

and

Ivy Lane Denizen

, plus some elves that can generate mana to make this interaction work.

Targ Nar, Demon-Fang Gnoll

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Some players are considering this as one of the best commanders of the latest sets. It actually has a higher than normal power level for an uncomkon. A 2/2 that can grow into a 4/4 costing only two mana and increasing the power of all other creatures in the deck makes an aggressive deck possible, which can ramp the right way, have red removals, strong and value-generating creatures like

Boarding Party

, in addition to also putting the monarchs of the color, to ensure you never run out of resources. It is also possible to include artifacts that support the game as a whole, such as

Bonder's Ornament

,

Prophetic Prism

and signets. The player's posture with this deck must be very aggressive because if you assemble it properly, it will ask for it, and at certain times, it can end the game in a single combat.

Trelasarra, Moon Dancer

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This is a deck that can give your opponents a lot of work, but it is simple to play with it, as we can use many ways to gain life, and with this lifegain, opponents can suffer to put the game in their favor again. It is possible to place cards such as

Essence Warden

and the Soul Sisters, as well as many cards with the ability to generate mana, such as Elves. Cards that create tokens are welcome too, and are present in the

Presence of Gond

and

Midnight Guard

combo. The creature will be buffed, and the player who chose it can still scry. All of these abilities make this commander stronger than normal, and a more aggressive deck compared to the possible archetypes for Pauper EDH. Again, the player's posture in front of the deck must be aggressive; guarding the removals and trying to protect the hand, with the potential to end the game quickly.
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Conclusion

This was the analysis of the eventual commanders of the latest set. They are all legendary, but remember that for the Pauper EDH this is not necessary, it just has to be an uncommon creature. Some of these decks may require greater care when setting up, as much of the deck is synergistically linked to its commander. I want to remember that we only have 6 lists, so the others that you haven't seen here, can be creative as you like. Any questions, I'm available in the comments! Thanks and until the next article.

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Beto Xavier

Betão, professor of Physics, enthusiast of all formats, has dedicated himself solely and exclusively to Pauper since 2019 and recently to the PDH.

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