EDH Deck Time: Olivia Voldaren

Although I’ve chosen not to play red (and white) in EDH, of the limited number of legendary creatures in Modern Masters 2017, Olivia is clearly the one for me.

Olivia VoldarenGriselbrandLinvala, Keeper of SilenceObzedat, Ghost Council

(Of course, I’d choose the demon, if I could. Although, unlike Olivia, who’s just faring better after the fall of Sorin, Griselbrand is dead, in case someone wants to go that far into Vorthos territory.)

Of course, at least some of the time we just want to steal other people’s creatures, especially if they happen to have something like Blightsteel Colossus, which won’t die so easily. This requires some ramping, but since that’s where I almost always end up, I’m not going to do it here and instead I’ll just assume we’ll be able to do it some of the time naturally. I’ll still play plenty of lands. I’m just not going to try and jump ahead in mana. Anyway, the control ability just makes games, that are supposed to be casual, kind of difficult to navigate for your opponents, so I’ll stay away from enforcing that too much, but since it was clearly built for constructed (even though it was neglected for a very long time, before people actually caught onto how strong it was, and eventually Olivia dominated the WMC and Player’s Championship).

Based on EDHREC, the usual way to build Olivia is to make a Vampire-tribal, so we’ll do something different. Let’s control the board with our mistress. What are the ways we can have her just machine gun down opposing creatures?

Archetype of FinalityHorobi, Death’s WailAspect of GorgonBaleful EidolonBasilisk Collar
Deadly WanderingsGorgon FlailGorgon’s HeadOnyx MagePainsmith
Paragon of Open GravesQuietus SpikeRetreat to Hagra

Okay, so we won’t need most of those. Otherwise the deck will just be too predicable. I’ll go with these:

Horobi, Death’s WailBasilisk CollarOnyx MagePainsmithQuietus Spike

Which leaves us with five ways to just decimate everyone else’s board. That should suffice.

Since we might want to use those things with other creatures as well, let’s put in a small Dragon theme (there’s plenty of other creatures that can do the same, but are they as much fun as dragons?)

Balefire DragonForgestoker DragonShockmaw Dragon

The last two are otherwise quite ineffective creatures in this format, but with the aid of deathtouch, they suddenly become quite good.

I’m not putting any tutoring in (except for lands). Instead, I’ll just put in some ways to draw cards and sift through the library.

Read the BonesPhyrexian ArenaBloodgift DemonKothophed, Soul HoarderPromise of Power
Indulgent TormentorHarvester of SoulsDisciple of BolasOb Nixilis Reignited

There seems to be a general theme of big flyers. Sadly, neither Kolaghan (my personal favorite of the new Elder Dragons, both versions of whom I played quite a bit in Standard, while they were legal) really fits what we have thusfar. So, let’s put in Kolaghan Monument in her honor.

Kolaghan Monument

So, moving on, some extra removal would be in order.

Unlicensed DisintegrationHero’s DownfallTragic SlipGo for the ThroatTerror
TerminateDreadboreHero’s Demise

What else? I want to play some freakish cards from the color combination I won’t be able to play otherwise, such as…

Bituminous BlastBladewing the RisenCarnage GladiatorDaretti, Ingenious IconoclastPain Magnification
Rix Maadi GuildmageVial Smasher the Fierce

Next, these were the primary colors for Madness in the last Innistrad block, so let’s make theme out of that. We can even bring her future self in for this.

Olivia, Mobilized for WarBig Game HunterAvacyn’s JudgmentCall to the NetherworldFrom Under the Floorboards
Grave ScrabblerMurderous CompulsionStromkirk OccultistAcademy RaiderBedlam Reveler
Call the BloodlineChandra AblazeCryptbreaker

Actually, I didn’t research these very thoroughly, so I probably missed something very good, but I’m happy with this.

Finally, we still have some room for generic control stuff, so let’s add that.

DamnationSyphon MindKolaghan’s CommandRelease the GremlinsCabal Conditioning
Servant of TymaretDemolishFiery Confluence

Which leaves with room for 45 mana sources (plus the one mentioned previously). We will have plenty of uses for it with Olivia and bunch of expensive creatures.

Since I like to have 40 lands in my decks and despite the fairly high curve, I don’t see a reason to change that here, I’ll have room for five mana producing artifacts. I will leave out Sol Ring once again, despite its power.

Mind StoneHedron ArchiveRakdos SignetCharcoal DiamondFire Diamond

We’ll have room for some utility lands as well.

Thawing GlaciersVolrath’s StrongholdMyriad Landscape

Well, use whatever duals you have, just have enough of them.

Akoum RefugeBlackcleave CliffsBlood CryptBloodfell CavesDragonskull Summit
Foreboding RuinsGraven CairnsLavaclaw ReachesMolten SlagheapRakdos Carnarium
Shadowblood RidgeTemple of Malice

With 11 Mountains and 11 Swamps, that leaves as with 23 sources for each color. More would be nice, but we get a few from the artifacts and we have ways of finding more of either. More black sources would be nice, so maybe it would be a good idea to cut some Mountains for some of those.

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