Adam_the_Mentat's picture
Nov 20 2015 11:00am
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CJB: Whip out those mana artifacts, here we go!

Hey everyone! Thanks for joining me again.

This week I'm focusing on two decks that require a lot of mana to cast a lot of crazy stuff. This is the stuff Commander was made for!

Arguably, these decks are also ones that are wiiiiiiiiide open to interpretation. Commanders like Nekusar, Titania or Varolz really have a linear path set before them in terms of deck building, with some wiggle room, but mostly with the same components. Nekusar without Spiteful Visions or Wheel of Fortune? I've never seen it. Titania without Crucible of Worlds or Sylvan Safekeeper? Laughable. Varolz without Phyrexian Dreadnought or Death's Shadow? Never gonna happen.

But Mayael the Anima and Maelstrom Wanderer? These guys can be built a multitude of ways. Heck, I even used Mayeal for one of my Christmas/Winter Holiday themed articles.

Both of these decks are decks I have built, rebuilt, scrapped, rebuilt-from-the-ground-up, rinse, repeat. These are decks that I'm never quite satisfied with, but am satisfied enough, at present, to present them here for you. As always, please use these builds to fuel your own deranged machinations when brewing.

Bloodbraid Elf 
Brutalizer Exarch 
Garruk's Horde 
Magus of the Future 
Mul Daya Channelers 
Oracle of Mul Daya 
1 Progenitor Mimic 
Etherium-Horn Sorcerer 
Skill Borrower 
Arbiter of the Ideal 
Courser of Kruphix 
Surrak Dragonclaw 
Xenagos, God of Revels 
Thassa, God of the Sea 
Inferno Titan 
Soul of Shandalar 
Stonebrow, Krosan Hero 
Nylea, God of the Hunt 
Mercurial Chemister 
1 Consecrated Sphinx
Eternal Witness 
1 Woodland Bellower
1 Greenwarden of Murasa
Shaman of the Great Hunt 
Phyrexian Ingester 


Other Spells 
Sensei's Divining Top 
Call of the Wild 
Guided Passage 
Into the Wilds 
Sylvan Library 
Mirri's Guile 
Prophetic Bolt 
Reality Shift 
Primeval Bounty 
Future Sight 
1 Brutal Expulsion
Temur Ascendancy 
1 Ral Zarek
Kiora, the Crashing Wave 
Ugin, the Spirit Dragon 
Karn Liberated 
Sol Ring 
Mana Crypt 
Beast Within 
Desert Twister 
Skyshroud Claim 
Jace, the Mind Sculptor 
1 Nissa's Renewal
1 Ugin's Insight
Mizzium Mortars 
1 Scour from Existence
Urban Evolution 
1 Nissa's Revelation
Coercive Portal 
Plea for Power 

Sulfur Falls 
Volcanic Island 
Steam Vents 
Tropical Island 
Rootbound Crag 
Ancient Tomb 
Hinterland Harbor 
Breeding Pool 
Temple of Mystery 
Temple of Epiphany 
Temple of Abandon 
1 Halimar Depths
Strip Mine 
Encroaching Wastes 
Ghost Quarter 
Frontier Bivouac 
Command Tower 
Reflecting Pool 
Thespian's Stage 
Mana Confluence 
City of Brass 
Stomping Ground 
Tectonic Edge 
1 Cinder Glade

I'm going to start out this talk about Maelstrom Wanderer by saying I wish I could include Soothsaying. His big mana build has plenty of leftover mana to manipulate the X in the enchantment. Occasionally, since this deck is loaded with other deck-sifting cards, you might need the shuffle. The problem is that, more than the vaunted Divining Top, I've put it out and had opponents concede right away. "This won't be fun," or "I'm not sitting through this," or "This'll take too long" are the paraphrased and passive-aggressive chats I get when I drop it, so I took it out. In paper, this sort of thing doesn't seem as frowned upon-- but paper Commander and the ever-aggressive, spike-fueled Commander found on MTGO are entirely different beasts.

This deck is all about the top cards of your library, though. It shares this theme with Mayael too, but for different-yet-similar reasons, Maelstrom wants to cheat things into play via Cascade, and Mayael through an activated ability that plops things onto the battlefield. Mayael can only do creatures, where Maelstrom can cast all manner of things (which also count as casting, not just plopping into play), so long as said things are CMC7 or less.

Top of the Magic Deck TO YOU:

The following cards all make ample use of the top of your library being known, something Maelstrom Wanderer also finds useful. This is the central theme of the deck:

Bloodbraid Elf & Etherium-Horn Sorcerer for more Cascade; Oracle of Mul Daya; Mul Daya Channelers; Call of the Wild; Into the Wilds; Zoologist; Garruk's Horde; Skill Borrower; Arbiter of the Ideal; Courser of Kruphix; Magus of the Future & Future Sight.

By the way, if you've never combo'ed Future Sight and (Sensei's Diving Top), you are in for a treat.

Of course,  all of the above cards are all better when you can manipulate the top of your library with things like the aforementioned Top. To this end, I have Thassa, (Nissa' Revelation), Sylvan Library, Mirri's Guile, Halimar Depths, the Temples & Jace, the Mind Sculptor's 0 cost ability.

Next up is a lot of card draw. We want a handful of spells and a library full of spells. We want answers, and to grab land to plop out. Urban Evolution, Ugin's Insight, the Chemister, the Ascendancy, the coveted Consecrated Sphinx, Impulse, Plea for Power, Coercive Portal and Kiora.

The rest of this deck is either Batman's Utility Belt-caliber stuff, or fun, Timmy-inspired fun cards in Temur.

Mossbridge Troll 
Mycoid Shepherd 
Spellbreaker Behemoth 
Xenagos, God of Revels 
Iroas, God of Victory 
Armada Wurm 
Elderscale Wurm 
Engulfing Slagwurm 
Kamahl, Pit Fighter 
Worldspine Wurm 
Novablast Wurm 
Baneslayer Angel 
Gaea's Revenge 
Woodfall Primus 
Norwood Priestess 
Elvish Piper 
Dromoka, the Eternal 
Inferno Titan 
Avatar of Slaughter 
Magmatic Force 
Wurmcoil Engine 
Avacyn, Angel of Hope 
1 Void Winnower
1 Conduit of Ruin
1 Breaker of Armies


Other Spells 
Mayael's Aria 
Cathars' Crusade 
Shield of the Oversoul 
1 Nissa's Revelation
Mirari's Wake 
Defense of the Heart 
Tooth and Nail 
1 From Beyond
Ajani Vengeant 
Ugin, the Spirit Dragon 
See the Unwritten 
Shamanic Revelation 
Mana Reflection 
Quicksilver Amulet 
Lightning Greaves 
1 Animist's Awakening
Beast Within 
Council's Judgment 
Mirri's Guile 
Sylvan Library 
Coercive Portal 
Staff of Nin 
Austere Command 
Sol Ring 
Mana Crypt 
Summoning Trap 
Swords to Plowshares 
Mizzium Mortars 
Karn Liberated 
Illusionist's Bracers 

Thespian's Stage 
Temple of Plenty 
Temple of Abandon 
Temple of the False God 
Temple of Triumph 
Mikokoro, Center of the Sea 
Ancient Tomb 
Krosan Verge 
Stomping Ground 
Sacred Foundry 
Temple Garden 
Buried Ruin 
Jungle Shrine 
Ghost Quarter 
Strip Mine 
Encroaching Wastes 
Command Tower 
Reflecting Pool 
Tectonic Edge 
1 Cinder Glade
1 Canopy Vista
Myriad Landscape 

Next up, we've got Mayael.

This is a varied group of creatures, mostly with power five or grater, many of which have been included because I want to have fun dammit. Yes I could put in Kozilek or Ulamog or Ulamog, but I decided against it. Old school red Kamahl? He gets called up to the majors. Magmatic Force? Heck yes.

This deck also allows me to indulge in my love of giant wurm creatures, particularly Worldspine Wurm and Novablast Wurm. By the way, the combo of Avacyn and the Novablaster is epic. Go ahead and Tooth and Nail for it.

Besides just Mayael, this deck has a lot of green ways to score creatures onto the battlefield for free. I loaded it to the gills with stuff like Summoning Trap, See the Unwritten, Elvish Piper, Norwood Priestess, and Quicksilver Amulet. Then, I loaded it up with mana resources like Mirari's Wake and (Animist's Awakaning) and Mana Reflection. Next up was card drawing, removal, batman's utility belt. Then I got to choose the creatures: 

Mossbridge Troll: When combined with Mayael's Aria it can win you the game right there. Also a fun, underused card in its own right.
Mycoid Shepherd: Rockin' the Power-5 theme.
Drumhunter: Ditto for this, but ya know, card draw and a ton of mana.
Creeperhulk: I always want to use this card, but then it makes the cut. I figured in a deck with Ferocious and Naya's Power-5 matters theme, it's perfect.
Spellbreaker Behemoth: Indestructible stuffs!
Xenagos, God of Revels: He's just a really cool god when your game plan is stomp. 
Godsire: What a fun card for making a bigger army. 
Iroas, God of Victory: Another great god for a combat deck. 
Armada Wurm: Two wurms for the price of one Mayael activation? Sold American.
Elderscale Wurm: Life insurance policy via wurm.
Engulfing Slagwurm: A great, underrated, threat that is fun for Commander, where big things happen.
Kamahl, Pit Fighter: Just old school man. Well not super old school, but old school enough. Hasty six, or do 3 to a problematic situation.
Worldspine Wurm: The mack daddy of big ol' wurms!
Novablast Wurm: Great in a pinch/great in a combo. 
Baneslayer Angel: Making Serra Angel question her self-worth.
Gaea's Revenge: A fun card to plop out with Mayael.
Woodfall Primus: Useful fattie creature is useful. 
Dromoka, the Eternal: I opted for this one because it's only 5 mana and if its in your hand, easier to cast.
Inferno Titan: More damage. In one game, I stacked it on my library with Mirri's Guile and then a well timed Summoning Trap foiled all my opponent's plans.
Avatar of Slaughter: This can just get downright nutty. 
Magmatic Force: More damage!
Wurmcoil Engine: The best wurm happens to be mechanical!
Avacyn, Angel of Hope: How could I not include her? 
Void WinnowerConduit of RuinBreaker of Armies: Fun stuff from BFZ, eschewing Annihilatordrazi.

So, my favorite thing is putting Illusionist's Bracers on Mayael. This deck plays decidedly smoothly, and has netted me a higher-than-I-expected amount of wins.

Thanks for joining me again. Did I miss anything you would've included? Lemme know in the comments below, or maybe shoot me a message in Twitter: @CmdrJohnnyBoosh.

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