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Conditions Allow – Chevill, Bane of Monsters
Welcome back to EDHREC and Conditions Allow, the series where I build around commanders with a drawback and turn it into a strength. This week I’m diving into the wilderness of Ikoria for the first time. Every good expedition needs a guide, and I’ve carefully selected someone with a lot of experience facing the many dangers of this plane:.
is the third card in all of Magic to mention bounty counters. Similar to , whenever a creature with a bounty counter on it dies, will let you draw a card and gain some life. Unlike Mathas, however, Chevill’s effect only has you draw a card, not anyone else. Also, can only place a bounty counter on an opponent’s creature, and only if there are no other bounty counters on permanents.
This means you can’t useto keep extra bounty counters floating around. wants you to take things slow, prepare for the beasts you are hunting, and slowly wear them down until they can’t fight back anymore.
Finding the Trail
To do that, however, Chevill will need a little help. He may be the thing that draws us cards, but something else is going to have to do the actual killing. Looking at‘s EDHREC page, and are both popular options, appearing in well over 50% of decks. Slightly less popular is . is the only other card that allows us to put bounty counters on creatures, doubling our ability to draw cards per turn cycle. is also very strong. Its cost reduction can kick in much faster than you’d expect, and then it can quickly start picking off bounties.
Deathtouch Theme page to see if this is a path worth pursuing.also appears at the top of Chevill’s page. This Equipment gives the ability to reach out and destroy his target himself, since he has deathtouch. , , and even all appear on Chevill’s EDHREC page as well, suggesting that deathtouch tribal might become a common theme for this commander. Let’s check out the
Chevill also reminds me slightly of. They both gain value by putting counters on creatures. Maybe we can find cards on her page that don’t show up on Chevill’s yet.
A Cleric You Can Count On
Let’s start with. She comes down early, just like , and can easily pick off value creatures early in the game with just a few -1/-1 counters. Proliferating bounty counters doesn’t make us draw more cards, but it can quickly build a Snake army that will dominate the battlefield. can Proliferate if a couple of creatures already have -1/-1 counters, or he can put out counters of his own if you’d rather spend mana on other things. If the resulting 1/1 Snake tokens don’t cut it for you, consider to make your field much more threatening.
The perfect card for, however, is . This card is obviously bonkers with in play, not to mention , but it’s still plenty strong with just Chevill. Every upkeep you’ll draw an extra card, doubling the draw potential of your commander. This is very powerful in a slow, grindy deck. Your card draw won’t be explosive enough to draw immediate attention, and is easily disrupted enough to not become distracting. Slow, innocuous, but steady card advantage is what will win games with , and is the perfect card to make this commander start ticking.
Don’t Touch Me!
Shifting over to the Deathtouch Theme Page to see if we can find any more hidden gems. strikes me as another commander with some similarities to . She gains value when an opponent’s creature dies by returning an artifact from your graveyard to your hand. This could be , to continually destroy the creature you put a bounty counter on, or , to make sure those creatures really stay dead. You can even rescue bigger artifacts, including and . My favorite card from Glissa’s page, by far, is .
Much like, gives you the ability to fight a creature at the moment that best suites you. Deathtouch creatures, like or , are particularly good at fighting since they can trade up with pretty much any creature. With in play, you will immediately get back into your hand and repeat the process again. isn’t on Glissa’s page, but is, to ensure your damage can’t be prevented. Depending on how much you want to focus on artifacts, is a backup effect to continually recycle .
Finding Value in What you Have
This quick search has provided a nice outline forwhich you can take in a couple of different directions. Whether you focus on artifacts with or creatures or fighting, there are a couple more cards to keep in mind.
I’ve already mentioned the importance of card advantage for decks that play the long game, but it’s always the part I forget about so I’m going to mention it again.is particularly relevant here. Not only does it put two cards into your graveyard with every draw, but it can easily be given indestructible, so it’s pretty good in a fight, too. plays into the deathtouch theme and is a very strong source of card advantage. is another popular choice, but I think is worth considering as well. It helps smooth our land drops and hopefully pulls lands off the top of your deck so you draw useful cards more often, especially in the late game.
Monarch is another great source of card advantage that adds a fun, unique element to every game it appears in. Having the Monarch in play will also encourage your opponents to play creatures and attack, which will give you creatures to place bounty counters on as often as possible. I’ve been including cards that create a Monarch in more and more decks lately, but I think that this is a place where the mechanic can really shine.
Finally,. I’ve said a couple of times that this deck wants to play slow and wear its opponents down, but this card flies in the face of that. Depending on the exact cards in the deck, can win very quickly. Even if you don’t use this enchantment to win quickly, however, the extra mana from the Treasure tokens will ensure that you have the resources to handle any threat that your opponents can throw at you.
Without any further ado, here is my initial take on.
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I opted to focus on a few creatures for this list.seemed like too much value to pass up, especially with all the fighting this deck can do. seems very fun with the tokens from , but you might opt for for the top end of your curve. is another way to fight at instant speed with and .
Overall, I aimed for flexibility. Aristocrat strategies similar to .is an open-ended commander who can support any number of Golgari’s favorite strategies. He led me on a very entertaining hunt through EDHREC’s theme and commander pages. If I had thought of different commanders first, though, I could have ended up with a very different deck. appears on Chevill’s page, which could lead to a spellslinger style deck. also seems like a great place for
Let me know in the comments what deckmakes you want to build, or what cards you want to play with this brand new commander.