In the Dimir color combination, the list offers the typical Faeries shenanigans, with answers, copies, and obviously, Faeries. But, still, there are some things missing, and here our goal is to show them, understand the cards which were released, the reasons behind this, besides showing you how we can bring some relevant upgrades to the deck.
Original Fae Dominion List and the Deck's Strategy
The deck has a very simple idea of winning with combat damage, having one interaction or two with non-combat damage and life loss. The two commander options are Alela, Cunning Conqueror and Tegwyll, Duke of Splendor. In this list, we'll use Alela as the deck's general, with a focus on spells in opponent's turns, many instants and Flash creatures.
This deck's goal is to create a board with several Faeries and avoid damage as much as possible with Goad, while you take advantage of that in some way, be it by drawing cards, or forcing your opponents to lose health points.
Upgrades and Changes
Lorwyn really helped us in this upgrade, as it was one of the first planes to present Faeries as they are in Magic today: black and blue, with a Rogue sub-theme. However, in the upgraded list, we only have one card with a direct interaction with Rogues, and you can say it is the only card necessary here.
Starting with the lands: Only 3 Islands and 2 Swamps were removed. The deck's original mana base is well constructed for what it intends to do, but as 39 lands is a bit too much, we lowered it to 35. The only land addition was Reliquary Tower, to fit in some changes in card draw we'll show later on.
The instants which were removed were Perplexing Test, Reckless Spite, Repulse, Theoretical Duplication and Illusionist's Gambit. The idea of copying opponent's creatures is somewhat interesting, but it places you at the mercy of what the opponent has for you to take any value out of this. Considering that, we removed the cards with those effects.
As for the removed creatures, Faerie Formation, Faerie Seer, Hypnotic Sprite, Oona, Queen of the Fae, Shadow Puppeteers and Spellscorn Coven have come out. The lower-cost ones have come out as they are almost irrelevant when compared to other cards in the deck, whereas the higher-cost ones have come out precisely because of that. Shadow Puppeteers seems to be indeed a finisher, but it is quite a fragile card to cost 7 mana, even with its Ward 2.
And last, but not least, we have Midnight Clock. It is a great artifact, but it is a double-edged blade, as its effect can happen on a turn in which you don't want to change your hand. So, it was removed so that another mana rock fills its place.
Of the 7 creatures added here, 5 of them have Flash, which already creates synergy with Alela, Cunning Conqueror. And even those which don't, offer recursion in some way: Wavebreak Hippocamp alongside the commander will provide card draw beside the Faerie token.
Talion, the Kindly Lord is a great addition here: besides being a Faerie, it also punishes opponents bit by bit as it gives you an advantage. I recommend you choose from 2 to 3 here for its effect, preferably 3, considering the current state of Commander.
Touching back on Flash, we'll explain each one by one: Spellstutter Sprite is a somewhat conditional counter, but it isn't that hard to hit it, as it is a Faerie itself and will be a good body on board besides its primary role. Faerie Mastermind has become more and more popular in Commander, and here is no exception.
Mistbind Clique can be used both to just skip your opponent's turn, and to save yourself late game against a very dangerous opponent. Vendilion Clique has a similar role, as it can save you from taking that combo. And to tutor any of these Faeries or any from the original list, we have Faerie Harbinger.
As the idea is always playing in your opponent's turns, what can be better than answers which untap lands? That's why we added Rewind and Unwind here. For punctual removal, we have Infernal Grasp, and in case you are the target of a massive attack, Aetherize will solve your problems.
Card Draw and Miscellaneous
For even more card draw, we have inserted here Bident of Thassa, which, besides drawing, can force an attack to completely tap an opponent, and Kindred Discovery, which has the potential of filling your hand. To keep all these cards in hand, Thought Vessel was also added to the list.
The last two cards added were Skullclamp and Notorious Throng. Killing a token created by Alela to draw 2 cards for just 1 mana seems great in this deck, and the only card which interacts with Rogues mentioned previously is Notorious Throng, which has the potential of creating up to dozens of Faeries, besides the extra turn, which will give you windows for these Faeries to hit.
Upgraded Fae Dominion List
And this is how our upgraded Fae Dominion list is currently. 17 cards in total were modified, preserving a great portion of the original list, which by the way has some cards which punish the opponents without combat damage that are worth mentioning here: Obyra, Dreaming Duelist and Faerie Bladecrafter.
The original list already counts with good Faeries, new and old, and there are many equally good answers too. Your mana rock base is incredible, and allows for many turn 1 plays with Sol Ring with many mana rocks costing 2, allowing you to cast Alela, Cunning Conqueror on turn 2 and this way already start the game with a good advantage.
Alternative List - More Expensive
Here we have a much more optimized list with Alela, Cunning Conqueror for tables with higher power levels and with some other ideas, such as combo finishers, for instance.
The strategy is quite similar to the original list, with the difference of counting with several "free" spells and being way more responsive. It counts with the classic combo of Thassa's Oracle with Demonic Consultation, as there is no reason to not have it in a list with a more competitive streak in this color combination.
Faeries have gained more strength throughout time, and now in Wilds of Eldraine they have been in the spotlight. I risk saying that it has made the experience for those who pilot it more fun than before, considering the broader recursion you have currently.
It was quite fun writing about and mostly looking up Faeries, even more now that they are a bit more accessible. I still thought Vendilion Clique was inaccessible, but after a brief research I saw that these and the other added cards can be placed in an upgrade list like this one very easily.
What about you, did you like this upgraded list? Would you use another commander? Would you add other cards? Comment about it!