So, I couldn’t leave this topic to yesterday’s [card]Bloodbraid Elf[/card] as I felt I could do more with a [card]Centaur Battlemaster[/card], a card I’ve grown very fond of in Theros limited, although our relationship is sometimes strained as I’ve [card]Spark Jolt[/card]ed and even [card]Shredding Winds[/card]’d my own battlemaster to grow it. But hey, its won me quite a few games, sometimes basically oneshotting an opponent.
So, what can I do with one in EDH?
First, we need to get him out. Five mana is pretty much for a 3/3, so we need some ramp. Gladly, this is green’s thing, so we can put the usual suspects in the deck (you know, [card]Cultivate[/card] and so forth). However, since the deck doesn’t really have anything else to put mana into, we don’t want to overdo it, so I only put in six of these, one of which is [card]Sakura-Tribe Elder[/card]. Not the best amount and one of them is a bit too costly ([card]Skyshroud Claim[/card]), because it costs four and therefore doesn’t really allow us to get to our general faster.
Second, we need to protect him. Gladly, in EDH pauper sweepers are pretty rare or very costly. Taking down a 3/3 is already pretty hard, but any trigger will save him from [card]Lightning Bolt[/card] and its ilk. However, there are [card]Doom Blade[/card]s out there, as well as [card]Unsummon[/card]s and such. Therefore, we’ll put all the cards that can give it hexproof we can find. There aren’t many, but some. Also, we’ll put in a couple of ways of making him indestructible and multiple ways of regenerating him. We’re still pretty week to blinking, but we have alternate plan for that.
We also need ways to get damage through, so we need to put some ways to get trample in the deck. [card]Rancor[/card] is the king of this (and isn’t cheap at 2.5€), but we need more than that. If they trigger him, too, that’s great.
In case other people are playing plenty of unsummons, we need creatures with hexproof, so lets put a few in as an alternate plan.
In my experience with drafting Theros and playing Theros sealed, I’ve found that battlemaster likes to fight. Those cards target him, so they trigger him and he gets the counters before the fight, so he can walk up to pretty big creatures and pick a fight.
Finally, not everything needs to be cleanly synergistic with our general, so we can put in some other good utility, such as [card]Broken Fall[/card] and some enchantment and artifact destruction.
Burst of Strength
Heal the Scars
Lace with Moonglove
Vines of Vastwood
Hunt the Weak
Time to Feed
That cost about 15 euros all in all. That’s a good reason to play pauper, if any. Still a pretty cool deck, despite being very limited in what I can include in it.
I’m also finding again that I get to use mostly cards that are pretty good. There are some I’d never use in standard EDH deck, like most of the instants, but there are plenty I use regularly, such as all the ramp and [card]Broken Fall[/card].