Deck Spotlight: Brion Stoutarm EDH (part 1 – conception and core)

I know that there’s been quite a few posts about EDH lately, and the reason for the material being slanted towards the casual side is threefold: first of all, there’s no big Legacy event I need to prepare for until November of this year here in Sweden, and even then, I know what deck I’m going to play already. Secondly, EDH is my outlet for deck building and deck teching and creativity. Thirdly, and most importantly, I’ve been listening a lot to the rather excellent podcast The Five Commanders while commuting and walking the dog and so on, and the podcast keeps my mind locked in on EDH. I recommend everyone to have a listen to the podcast, it’s available through iTunes and other places as well.

Through much of my EDH career, I’ve been playing blue. The reason for this is that I’ve always played blue. My first Magic deck was mono-blue with a bunch of flying creatures and counterspells, which was all fine and dandy until my younger brother built a mono-green deck full of spiders and other creatures with Reach. All of my Legacy decks are blue, because the colour is simply the best (better than all the rest) in the format, and that’s just how it goes. My first EDH deck was the preconstructed The Mimeoplasm deck, which I modified with my own cards. Most of my decks have been blue with black and then either white or green. For this project, I decided to pick a general neither blue nor black nor green – I chose Brion Stoutarm.brionstoutarm.hq

Honestly, Brion Stoutarm has a lot of things going for him. Although he personifies the “worst” colours in the format, he has a respectable 4/4 Lifelink body at only 2RW, and he has a very useful Fling ability. As far as Boros-coloured generals, the list isn’t really short, a whopping total of 10 legendary creatures are available to those who seek the worst colours in the format, but Brion is by far the most awesome. I chose him for a variety of reasons:

– I wanted a general not already played in either of my play groups.

– I wanted a non-blue general.

– I wanted a general to build a deck around.

– I wanted something “fun”.

fervor.hq

Waaaaaaagh!

Brion personifies all of these qualities above, and as a deckbuilding project, he was a perfect fit. I knew from the get-go that I wanted some number of “stealing” spells, in order to steal things from my opponent to throw at them. I also knew I wanted a large number of expendable creatures with good Enters the Battlefield effects that I could play and the immediately throw with little loss. I wanted the deck to be aggro and win honestly in the combat step, and for that I needed stuff with Haste. In our playgroup, the basic rule is that if a creature doesn’t have a good ETB-effect or Haste, it won’t do anything at all, since a lot of the group loads up on board sweepers, understandably.

This led me into adding a bunch of cards that grant my creatures Haste. Aside the obvious Lightning Greaves, I found an ugly 7th edition rare when digging through my boxes. Fervor is an enchantment for 2R that gives all my stuff Haste and that’s it. It’s almost strictly worse than Hammer of Purphoros or Anger, but I play them all!

My list is far from complete, and I’ll only present two parts in this post, the haste-granting and the stealing:

Haste-granting things:

1 Anger
1 Ogre Battledriver
1 Fervor
1 Lightning Greaves
1 Hammer of Purphoros

Aside these five, I already play a number of creatures who have Haste naturally, which lessens the pressure on the Lightning Greaves.

The stealing things:

1 Zealous Conscripts
1 Molten Primordial
1 Grab the Reins
1 Flash Conscription
1 Traitorous Blood
1 Traitorous Instinct
1 Insurrection

While Insurrection is in the deck simply because it can sometimes just win the game from nowhere, the rest of the stealing bits are also doing things on their own or bringing additional effects to the table. Traitorous Instinct grants +2/+0 for only a single mana more than Act of Treason (which we must consider some sort of baseline at just stealing a creature for 2R), which is cheaper than Unwilling Recruit. Traitorous Blood grants the creature stolen Trample, which can help getting some damage through. Zealous Conscripts is a 3/3 on its own, and finally, Grab the Reins and Flash Conscription are both Instants, which makes them combat tricks on their own. Grab the Reins also comes with an alternate built-in Fling, or both if Entwined, and Flash Conscription comes with Lifelink (though at a steep price).

On my “to add” list is Conquering Manticore, a bigger Zealous Conscripts, but smaller Molten Primordial.

In the next part, I’ll explore the control elements of the deck, which makes it able to get to enough mana to cast the general, steal something, and then toss it right back all in the same turn.

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2 Comments

  1. Deck Spotlight: Brion Stoutarm EDH (part 2 – control) | Goyf Wars
  2. Deck Spotlight: Brion Stoutarm EDH (part 3 – mana, creatures and utility) | Goyf Wars

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