Pauper EDH Deck Time: Wood Sage

Someone had found his or her way into this blog by using the words “wood sage mtg pauper commander”. That got me thinking. First thought was “is that really uncommon”? I would’ve thought such an old card would be rare with its awkward build-around abilities, but apparently it was reprinted in Conspiracy, so now it’s uncommon.

Second thought: It does really have potential, so why not?

[draft]Wood Sage[/draft]

As usual, how does one abuse that power? It was probably designed for Johnnies in an environment where its really, really awkward to use. The potential is great, but at the time you didn’t really have ways to either manipulate the top of your deck or to abuse your graveyard (well, some stuff for the latter, but not much). So, basically, we need three things: stuff to manipulate the top of the library, stuff to abuse the graveyard, and stuff we can get into play from either of the sources.

Manipulating the Top of the Library

Scrying is the keyword for this. In this case, the deeper, the better. Scrying for one doesn’t always help us, because we can’t have an all creature deck (we do need lands, and not all of the things we can use to manipulate the top of the deck are creatures either). There’s plenty of cards, but not all of them are good in our deck. So, from the selection, these commons are the ones I think would work best.

[draft]
Aqueous Form
Augury Owl
Condescend
Ferocious Charge
Foresee
Omenspeaker
Preordain
Prescient Chimera
Serum Visions
Sigiled Starfish
[/draft]

[card]Sigiled Starfish[/card] is probably the best, because its so easily repeatable. [card]Prescient Chimera[/card] is pretty good too, especially if we have enough spells. Its a wincon (albeit a slow one) on top of being part of the library manipulation package.

Other creatures that can manipulate the top of the library in some way or another include the following:

[draft]
Aven Windreader
Callous Deceiver
Crystal Seer
Delver of Secrets
Descendant of Soramaro
Dewdrop Spy
Fencer Clique
Feral Deceiver
Gilt-Leaf Seer
Information Dealer
Ink Dissolver
Inkfathom Divers
Merfolk Observer
Rootwater Mystic
Sage Aven
Sage of Epityr
Sage Owl
Spire Owl
Survivor of the Unseen
Wayward Soul
[/draft]

Again, the ones which can be used repeatedly are better. I’m not sure about the ones that can return themselves to the top of your library, because obviously your opponents won’t try to kill them, but you can use them to block and use the ability. This is a bit cumbersome, but in this environment it might work. [card]Delver of Secrets[/card] is a bit of a stretch. On the other hand, a flying 3/2 in this environment can be a pretty good threat. However, I included it as a part of this package, because you can use him to check the top of your library.

Then there’s [card]Brainstorm[/card] and all its weaker cousins. Also, there’s some recursion cards in green, that can be very useful in this deck.

[draft]
Brainstorm
Dream Cache
Halimar Depths
Index
Ponder
Portent
Reclaim
Salvage
Taigam’s Scheming
Trickery Charm
[/draft]

Repeatability is of course the key, so here’s some artifacts that can be used over and over again to see what you have on top of your library. [card]Explorer’s Scope[/card] is very strong otherwise as well.

[draft]
Darksteel Pendant
Explorer’s Scope
Lens of Clarity
[/draft]

Well, there might actually be a use for [card]Lens of Clarity[/card], which always seems to go last in Khans draft.

Recursion and Other Graveyard Shenanigans

First, there’s Flashback.

[draft]
Acorn Harvest
Chatter of the Squirrel
Deep Analysis
Elephant Ambush
Gnaw to the Bone
Moment’s Peace
Think Twice
[/draft]

Apparently the flashback cards at common aren’t very good. [card]Elephant Ambush[/card] has a way too high flashback cost, while [card]Chatter of the Squirrel[/card] has somewhat too high. On the other hand, they are free cards. I’d play at least [card]Acorn Harvest[/card], [card]Deep Analysis[/card] and [card]Think Twice[/card] at least. Beyond that its hard to say.

Since we can get pretty much any creature into play on the cheap, here’s two cards we can abuse:

[draft]
Dragon Fangs
Dragon Wings
[/draft]

Of course, we need creatures. Here’s some we can use. Recursion, Dredge and Scavenge all make use of our graveyard.

[draft]
Archaeomancer
Scrivener
Mnemonic Wall
Hooting Mandrills
Drudge Beetle
Korozda Monitor
Thrashing Mossdog
Undergrowth Scavenger
[/draft]

Here’s some other ways to use the graveyard.

[draft]
Elven Cache
Evolution Charm
Haunted Fengraf
Monstrify
Nature’s Kiss
Night Soil
Treasure Cruise
Vineweft
Wildwood Rebirth
[/draft]

Creatures

… and finally something to get into play. All of these have a CMC of six or more. This is for the two Dragon enchantments. There’s plenty more, but these have at least some abilities. I don’t think you need quite this many. Around fifteen might be enough. Maybe 20.

[draft]
Aethersnipe
Benthic Giant
Carnivorous Moss-Beast
Crash of Rhinos
Cytospawn Shambler
Errant Ephemeron
Giant Warthog
Glade Gnarr
Hand of Emrakul
Havenwood Wurm
Humbler of Mortals
Jungle Weaver
Krosan Tusker
Moss Kami
Oakgnarl Warrior
Pathbreaker Wurm
Rootbreaker Wurm
Scrapdiver Serpent
Siege Wurm
Ulamog’s Crusher
Vulpine Goliath
Walker of the Grove
Woolly Loxodon
Yavimaya Wurm
[/draft]

And then there’s these two, which I’d put in any green Pauper EDH deck:

[draft]
Nessian Asp
Ravenous Leucrocota
[/draft]

All in All

Well, once again I didn’t really have a list here, just a bunch of things I researched. That’s 95 card (including a couple of lands). Sure, this deck can probably work with a fewer lands than most decks, so you’ll have room, but you still have to cut 30 or so cards from the the list.

While cutting stuff, I’d keep most or even all the creatures that help you see the top of your library. Otherwise… Whatever you think is fun.

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