EDH Deck Time: Adriana

First, I really dislike white and while I like red in many ways, I have decided a long time ago not to play it in EDH, so this is more like a thought experiment than anything else. I will never actually build this deck.

So, with that in mind, lets design a deck with [card]Adriana, Captain of the Guard[/card] helming it.

[draft]Adriana, Captain of the Guard[/draft]

The key here is that you want to attack not stop. All this would work much better if Adriana didn’t cost five to cast, but since that isn’t something we can actually change, we have to live with it. What we can do, is try to flood the board with creatures as soon as possible, so that we can attack all the opponents on turn five and have plenty of creatures connect, because the opponents can’t really block.

One funny thing here is that its actually beneficial to keep your opponents live, because otherwise you can’t get the same benefit for the melee.

So, we need plenty of creatures, we need to keep the creatures alive and we need to be able to have them attack consistently.

Lets start with ‘plenty’. Gladly these two colors are good with making tokens. You should note that if a creatures comes into play ‘attacking’ it doesn’t count as having attacked, so many of these will come into play as 1/1s, but what you can do is attack different players with the tokens and if you stack your triggers properly, this might come in very handy with melee.

[draft]Hanweir Garrison
Brimaz, King of Oreskos
Assemble the Legion
Battle Screech
Blade Splicer
Secure the Wastes
Cenn’s Enlistment
Cloudgoat Ranger
Drogskol Cavalry
Elspeth, Knight-Errant
Elspeth, Sun’s Champion
Emeria Angel
Geist-Honored Monk
Gideon’s Phalanx
Gideon, Ally of Zendikar
Goblin Rabblemaster
Hammer of Purphoros
Heliod, God of the Sun
Hero of Bladehold
Icatian Crier
Krenko, Mob Boss
Militia’s Pride
Monastery Mentor
Precinct Captain
Raise the Alarm
Retreat to Emeria
Rise of the Hobgoblins
Spirit Bonds
Stonybrook Schoolmaster
Sunhome Guildmage
White Sun’s Zenith[/draft]

Okay, that’s quite a bit too many, but I’ll get to cutting some of them later, when I have some picture of the curve we’re dealing with.

Let’s move onto keeping our creatures alive.

[draft]Eerie Interlude
Selfless Spirit
Brave the Elements
Archangel Avacyn
Avacyn, Angel of Hope
Boros Charm
Soul of New Phyrexia
Deathless Angel
Eldrazi Monument
Make a Stand
Rootborn Defenses[/draft]

Again, too many here, but I need to see the whole before I can know what to take out.

Than, onto attacking. What makes a creature a good attacker? Evasion. But evasion isn’t that simple. Basically any way a creature has advantages in combat is evasion. Even some drawbacks, such as being forced to attack each turn, can be a form of evasion, because the defending player can’t be quite sure whether you are attacking because you have something up your sleeve, or are you attacking just because you have to.

Anyhow, lets take First Strike. It isn’t strictly evasion, but it does make blocking harder. Especially, if the creature is strong enough to kill multiple blockers. Double Strike isn’t quite twicely so, but its still bad. Indestructible is good again and of course, the good old flying works as well.

Here’s a selection of creatures you definitely want:

[draft]Frontline Medic
Hero of Goma Fada
Iroas, God of Victory
Odric, Lunarch Marshal
Odric, Master Tactician
Purphoros, God of the Forge
Tajic, Blade of the Legion
Legion Loyalist[/draft]

They make combat very difficult for the defending player (at least some of the time), so they provide evasion. Next, Knights in general have First Strike and often have other similar abilities, like Protection, which provide pseudo-evasion. Knights are often also somewhat pushed (well, even [card]White Knight[/card] defintiely was), so they fill the lower part of the curve quite nicely.

[draft]Accorder Paladin
Knight Exemplar
Knight of Meadowgrain
Hero of Oxid Ridge
Knight of the Holy Nimbus
Knight of the White Orchid
Mirran Crusader
Order of the White Shield
Silver Knight
Silverblade Paladin
Student of Warfare
Truefire Paladin
White Shield Crusader
Youthful Knight[/draft]

Also, there’s actual evasion, mostly in the form of fliers. Flying is quite valuable, so its sometimes hard to find usable, cheap fliers, but there’s some pretty good ones, as well as creatures with Shadow and some with Intimidate.

[draft]Mistral Charger
Stormfront Pegasus
Loyal Pegasus
Daring Skyjek
Leonin Skyhunter
Skyhunter Skirmisher
Skyknight Legionnaire
Spectral Rider
Soltari Monk
Soltari Priest
Soltari Trooper
[/draft]

I was thinking about certain red fliers here, but the problem is that [card]Chandra’s Phoenix[/card] and [card]Flamewake Phoenix[/card], but since they require double red, they would make the manabase pretty awkward. [card]Chandra’s Phoenix[/card] would be pretty bad in this deck anyhow.

However, there’s one red card I’d like to see in this deck:

[draft]Reckless Bushwhacker[/draft]

That will give you at least a little play after you get sweeped. Just play lands as long as you are able, and maybe stuff like Iroas and once you’re ready, just lay out all the creatures you’ve accumulated in your hand and this little guy for the full blowout. Hopefully. It works in Standard…

Also, since we have now made blocking very difficult for our opponent, we can also make it even worse with removal. White has few of the best removal spells ever, so lets use those.

[draft]Swords to Plowshares
Path to Exile[/draft]

Some more would be good, but I don’t think we really care about most creatures our opponents might have, or if we need to, we’re already losing, so I’m not going to come up with any more than this.

Also, since we have quite a few ways to make our creatures indestructible, its not far fetched to use a couple of mass removal spells ourselves.

[draft]Wrath of God
Austere Command
Day of Judgment[/draft]

Sure you’ll need to get to around eight mana to make this work, but it could be a real blow-out, if you can destroy all creatures controlled by the other players, that leaves you able to attack freely.

Okay, that’s 81 cards, so we need to start cutting. Some are quite easy. I’ll cut all the cards with CMC 6 or higher, other than [card]Austere Command[/card]. The reason for this is that they don’t do enough for the mana investment and you don’t really want to draw any of them in the early game. One blowout, in the form of the command, is fine, but having seven six+ drops is just way too much for an aggressive deck. [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card] is definitely tempting, but I think we can do without her.

Next I’m cutting [card]Hero’s of Oxid Ridge[/card] and [card]Krenko, Mob Boss[/card], because of the double red in the casting cost and [card]Cenn’s Enlistment[/card], because it seems like too expensive for the effect. [card]Monastery Mentor[/card] doesn’t seem very good in this particular deck either.

Well, after that I wasn’t quite sure what to cut, so I just cut here and there, mostly from the more expensive ones. The final list, without lands, looks like this:

[deck]
[commander]
Adriana, Captain of the Guard
[/commander]
[creatures]
Accorder Paladin
Archangel Avacyn
Blade Splicer
Brimaz, King of Oreskos
Daring Skyjek
Emeria Angel
Frontline Medic
Goblin Rabblemaster
Hanweir Garrison
Hero of Bladehold
Icatian Crier
Iroas, God of Victory
Knight Exemplar
Knight of Meadowgrain
Knight of the Holy Nimbus
Knight of the White Orchid
Legion Loyalist
Leonin Skyhunter
Loyal Pegasus
Mirran Crusader
Mistral Charger
Order of the White Shield
Precinct Captain
Purphoros, God of the Forge
Reckless Bushwhacker
Selfless Spirit
Silver Knight
Silverblade Paladin
Skyhunter Skirmisher
Skyknight Legionnaire
Soltari Monk
Soltari Priest
Soltari Trooper
Spectral Rider
Stonybrook Schoolmaster
Stormfront Pegasus
Student of Warfare
Sunhome Guildmage
Truefire Paladin
White Shield Crusader
Youthful Knight
[/creatures]
[spells]
Boros Charm
Eerie Interlude
Make a Stand
Path to Exile
Raise the Alarm
Secure the Wastes
Swords to Plowshares
White Sun’s Zenith
Assemble the Legion
Militia’s Pride
Retreat to Emeria
Rise of the Hobgoblins
Spirit Bonds
Austere Command
Day of Judgment
Wrath of God
Eldrazi Monument
Hammer of Purphoros
[/spells]
[/deck]

“So, what about the lands?” I here you asking, and you are right to ask. Well, since these aren’t really my colors, and I don’t have any of the lands needed here, this is what I’d do: I have room for 40 lands, which might seem like a bit too much, but I don’t think so. Since the deck relies quite heavily on white, most, if not all, of those lands should produce it, and the deck needs about 25, or so, red sources, maybe a little less would be fine, but in a two color deck, there’s no need to skimp on color requirements. As many of the lands as possible should come into play untapped, but since so many duals don’t, this is going to be a bit of a problem.

Now, all in all, I might be way off here. Again, these are not my colors (in EDH), so I don’t have a similar indepth understanding of them as I do of the other colors. Still, seems pretty decent to me, if you are into this kind of deck. Feel free to tell me how wrong I am.

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