In Magic's most recent Universes Beyond collab, we had Doctor Who, the classic BBC science fiction show. In this crossover, 4 new decks were released. For this article, we chose Paradox Power, which counts with The Thirteenth Doctor and Yasmin Khan as the commanders.
Getting to Know the Deck
Paradox Power List and Strategy
This deck brings the Temur color combination - and, by the way, it became very usual for this combination to work with elements such as Cascade, or similar effects that mention spells not being cast from the hand through other cards or effects.
This deck is no different: Yasmin Khan is one of this deck's engines that make these effects happen, and they even became a keyword of their own with this precon's name: Paradox - this effect triggers when you cast a spell from anywhere other than your hand.
Alongside this ability, we have the other commander - The Thirteenth Doctor. We didn't delve too deep into the +1/+1 counters mechanic she offers. Instead, we focused on making Paradox happen, using the various cards that are already and other new varieties with the updates we'll add.
Upgrades and Their Reasons
We altered 13 cards in total, maintaining a great portion of the deck's original essence. We removed cards that don't really interact that much with our Paradox goal, and others as a result of that - for instance, Twice Upon a Time stops making sense when the number of Doctors is removed, like the ones we removed.
Other cards were removed as they are better with another strategy, such as Clara Oswald, for instance. Anyhow, we needed to open up space for the new cards, so the ones below were selected to come out.
Considering the commander, The Thirteenth Doctor, is great at growing creatures, using some cards that interact well with that seems to be at least interesting: Gyre Sage, Incubation Druid and mostly Kami of Whispered Hopes are welcome in this build, as we count with some high-cost spells. Even though they depend almost totally on this commander to grow, they are still in a nice spot.
As basically a fusion of both commanders, we have Kami of Celebration, which works both with Paradox and +1/+1 counters: it sets off Paradox when modified creatures attack and also places +1/+1 counters when something is cast from exile - which means, it is a creature that sustains the game really well. We can even call it a third commander, considering how important it is for this particular deck.
Triggering and Interacting with Paradox
Even though we only have 2 parts talking about upgrades, we'll explain them bit by bit in this section. As a Cascade player and enjoyer, I made sure to bring good additions to this Upgrade considering this mechanic.
We start with cards from another Universes Beyond collab, Warhammer: The Lost and the Damned and Keeper of Secrets. The enchantment works like Paradox, but has the bonus of also checking for lands that aren't played from hand. Which means, the ramp cards that already come with this precon, such as Cultivate and Farseek, can also create creatures from it. As for Keeper of Secrets, it is useful as a possible win condition, dealing direct damage to your opponents.
And speaking of dealing damage, another set that can also be considered a "crossover" also shows up with reinforcements: directly from Baldur's Gate, we added Passionate Archaeologist and Delayed Blast Fireball. The enchantment has the same potential as Keeper of Secrets when it comes to dealing damage, and, as we use two commanders, we have two damage sources as we cast spells from exile. Spells such as Delayed Blast Fireball, which, thanks to this deck's strategy, doesn't necessarily need to be cast for its Foretell cost to deal its maximum amount of damage: if cast for 3 mana from Yasmin Khan, it will deal 5 damage, because it was cast from exile.
Finally, we have some legendary creatures and a non-legendary one: respectively, we use Faldorn, Dread Wolf Herald, Maelstrom Wanderer, Etali, Primal Storm, Etali, Primal Conqueror and Wild-Magic Sorcerer.
Faldorn, Dread Wolf Herald can potentially create several 2/2 Wolf tokens, and its second ability also serves as an engine for Paradox. The Cascade star Maelstrom Wanderer also couldn't be missing here: it basically hits any spell in the deck that costs 7 or less, such as Etali, Primal Storm and Etali, Primal Conqueror.
Nowadays, these cards are a must in decks with such a theme, even more so as you can slay an opponent with Etali, Primal Sickness' poison version in its transformed form.
Paradox Power Decklist with Upgrades
Here we have our upgraded list! We didn't change it a lot, as we prioritized quality over quantity. The deck's base list is quite interesting already and doesn't need that many changes, but the few additions we made have already increased the deck's power considerably.
Alternative List with Me, the Immortal
We also have an entirely different list with one of the possible commander alternatives in the deck, starring Me, the Immortal. I thought this card was too fun to stay out of the spotlight, and that is why I built a deck with it as the star.
Seeing a deck with my favorite color combination always makes me want to mess around with it and build new things. This precon was no different, and adding several of my favorite cards to it was wonderful. I hope the final result satisfies whoever pilots this deck using these upgrades.
Would you use other commanders? Would you focus on +1/+1 counters? Share your thoughts in the comment section!