From the Brim to the Trim – Flooding Opponents and Drying Up Budget Alike

(Akroma, Vision of Ixidor | Art by Chris Rahn)
(Rograkh, Son of Rohgahh | Art by Andrew Mar)

RogrAkroma, Unlikely Pair, More-Than-Likely Mayhem

Greetings and salutations from a country quite known at the moment for... Wait a second, I'm sure there was something this month... Oh well. I'm Arnaud and I'm thrilled to take you on a journey of uncanny brews, hidden gems and usage of EDHREC's filtering features.

It's been a while, has it not? With the brilliants analyses on Caverns of Ixalan from my fellow writers, we've hit a one week delay, which let you wonderful brewers some more time to place your votes. And if the previous iteration was a tight knit bundle, this week's is all but.

Almost 300 of you voted this time around (thank you thank you thank you!). With 85 votes, Breeches and Malcolm almost reached the 30% threshold. Virtus and Gorm followed closely, with 91 votes (31%). Our clear winner this week is the brash pair Akroma and Rograkh, with more than 40% of the votes.

Let's see what this aggressive pair has to offer, shall we?



I might be slightly biased when talking about this mighty Angel and puny Kobold. You see, I've actually built this deck back in 2020, when Commander Legends came out, albeit it being free from our usual constraints, and it's one of my favourite aggro piles of cards.

The strategy is clear and established: make a huge keyword salad so that Akroma can grant a huge buff to our team, get in the zone and smack faces.

So far, I've had a blast playing my own brew. While it can become quite mana intensive, there is almost always something fun to do. Plus, you get to play with several cards that would feel "meh" with other commanders. What's not to love?

After syphoning all the goodies from the pair's EDHREC page, we reach a proud 341 cards. Let's dive in!

First Trim – The Cardboard Chainsaw Massacre

While the full list is impressive indeed, I have the distinct impression this will not last long. As usual, we'll first get rid of all cards worth strictly more than $1, trying to keep as many as possible with the "Update to Cheapest" feature.

Alas, we have to say goodbye to a personal pet card, True Conviction. Come on Wizards, reprint that thing into oblivion once and for all!

With that sad parting, let's see what worthwhile goodies between $1 and $2 we have left.

  • Keeper of the Accord: at the time of writing, it stands at $1.03, just a smidge above our arbitrary threshold. That card is absolutely bonkers, giving you both ramp and Soldiers to hold the line. Get it if you can.
  • Kediss, Emberclaw Familiar: A fantastic way to make everyone around the table happy, with no jealousy. Everyone deserves to be bonked equally!
  • Brave the Sands: Akroma triggers during each and every combat step, making vigilance a particularly prized ability in this build.
  • Timely Ward: Akroma will draw stares, hatred and removal. This is a neat way to allow her to enjoy the party a bit more.
  • Scavenged Brawler: I like to think of this Construct as Wurmcoil Engine's distant cousin. Keywords aplenty, and ways to give them to a friend after its demise. Love it.
  • Relentless Assault: You know what's better than one trigger? Two.
  • Baneslayer Angel: I've got fond memories of that one. It used to be an obscenely expensive card back in the day. Still holds its own, with a much more manageable price.
  • Blade Historian: If he hits the field with a few friends and lives to see battle, it's pretty much game over.
  • Angelic Skirmisher: Versatile is the word!
  • Angel of Invention: Forget the tokens, this is a killing machine who also has the good taste of buffing its friends.

All right then. With all the luxury cardboard out of the way, we're down to... 219 cards. That's quite a bit more than we're accustomed to. Looks like we have some painful choices on the road ahead. Onwards!

Second Trim - Cardward Scissorhands

Before we get to the meat of things (and there will be much to unfold), let's slim down the veggies.

  • Draw : 12
  • Ramp : 23
  • Removal : 15
  • Wipes : 9

Honestly, I was expecting more here, especially in the Draw section. As it is, there is little fluff to cut here. I'll replace Sram, Senior Edificer with Tormenting Voice, and add Wild Guess as well as the sorely missing Imposing Grandeur. Yes, I'm well aware that giving cards to our opponents is not the best idea, but this deck can churn through its hands like crazy, and we need the fuel. I really wish we could add Big Score and Unexpected Windfall, but sadly these fall outside our budget mark.

Draw Ramp Removal Wipes

Sram, Senior Edificer Boros Cluestone Abrade Comet Storm
Boros Keyrune Condemn Doomskar
Boros Locket Crush Contraband Martial CoupÌ
Burnished Hart Deafening Clarion Ondu Inversion
Explorer's Scope Disenchant Slash the Ranks
Fellwar Stone Lightning Bolt Winds of Rath
Fire Diamond Lightning Helix
Goldvein Pick Pacifism
Marble Diamond Return to Dust
Rip Apart
Wear // Tear


After a bit of cleanup in the Lands section, we're down to 193 cards. Insofar, I think that might be the highest card count we've had since the beginning of the series. Looks like the next section will see a whole lot of stuff get the ax.

Third Trim – Cutting Off the Rough Edges

All right, we're here. And we have to make a decision.

As it stands, the list goes in three distinct directions: Keyword soup, Auras and Equipments. All three are valid choices, and some may even overlap one another. But we have to commit nonetheless to a major path. So I'll make it easy for you: let's go with the creatures. We've all seen Auras and Equipments, there is a ton of commanders out there who love to tinker with them. Akroma's ability, on the other hand, is rather unique. I might keep the Cream of the Crop, but the rest must go.

I hope this can get us down to a more manageable list, in the 130 cards or so.

I tinkered a bit with the idea of plugging in the whole list of removed stuff, but in the end that would have proven way too cumbersome to leaf through.

In the end, I decided to keep Blackblade Reforged for its massive buff and Sword of Vengeance for its keywords.

Down to... 150. Damn.

While I'm at it, let's also cut some of the remaining fluff. Cantrips, miscellaneous enchantments and sorceries, boosts, protection spells...various gadgets that could potentially have a room, but that have to go.

Cantrips Enchantments Boosts Protection Misc.

Expedite Always Watching Angelfire Ignition Akroma's Blessing Armillary Sphere
Messenger's Speed Assemble the Legion Temur Battle Rage Benevolent Blessing Bond of Discipline
Renegade Tactics Court of Grace Unleash Fury Lorehold Command Parhelion II
Duelist's Heritage Make a Stand Sevinne's Reclamation
Flaming Fist Mask of Avacyn Soul's Fire
Legion's Initiative Nahiri's Machinations
Marshal's Anthem Surge of Salvation
Paladin Class Unbreakable Formation
Path of Mettle Unquestioned Authority
Tavern Brawler


Much, much better. Down to 120 cards and counting. Let's have a look at the creatures.

Fourth Trim – Cut-a-Doodle-Doo!

Yeah, sorry about that one, didn't think we'd need an additional section.

Anyway, we're slowly but surely getting there.

Until now, I've decided to forego cutting any creature, aside from those too specialized. Still, we have 36 of them remaining, and some will have to go. I'd like to keep a healthy 20-25 count, to make sure we have enough to get by.

For this short trim, we'll get rid of:

And with that, we're finally, FINALLY at our final final 10.

Final Trim - Heart-wrenching Choices

Well, we're here. Let's get the job done.

As usual, bear in mind that no choices here are inherently bad. If you like any of these cards, by all means, go for them!

Onwards then.

  • 2 Plains: As it stands, our curve averages at 3.17. With all the ramp tucked in, I feel safe to cut a couple of lands. We still have Sejiri Shelter to keep us at a healthy 35. Yes, it's lame, I know.
  • Response // Resurgence: Double combat sounds nice, but I'm not 100% sure you'll have the mana available at the time you need it for this one-shot effect.
  • Rising of the Day: I like this, a lot (despite being from Universes Beyond/UB). But three mana feels slightly too expensive for that effect.
  • Kor Cartographer: Nice ramp effect, but no relevant keywords otherwise, and no way to blink it.
  • Loyal Apprentice: Looks nice on paper, but I never got it to stick around enough for it to become truly relevant.
  • Steel Seraph: I'm not too thrilled by the prototype, and the full version feels ever slightly too limited.
  • Venerable Warsinger: A 5/5 with Akroma, which will likely be blocked. I don't foresee too bright a reanimation future for this Cleric.
  • Faithless Looting: We don't play with the graveyard (much) and the three for two ratio feels bad.
  • Blasphemous Act: Because I really don't want to cut anything else.

And one final swap: Keleth, Sunmane Familiar goes out, and is proudly replaced by Chaos Dragon. Try it, you'll see why.

And there we have it. Finally!

Roggy & Akroma, Puny & Mighty

View on Archidekt

Commander (2)
Creatures (25)
Artifacts (14)
Sorceries (11)
Lands (34)
Instants (10)
Enchantments (4)

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View this decklist on Archidekt


This. Was. Hard. I did not expect this wacky pair to get along so well with our budget constraints.

What do you think, dear brewers? Is this what you had in mind when you voted for the pair? Would you have built them otherwise? Have I missed anything critical?

As usual, thanks for reading, and I'll see you in two weeks!

Arnaud Gompertz has been playing Magic since 4th Edition, back in 1995. He's been an assiduous EDH enthusiast since 2012, with a soft spot for unusual and casual Commanders. He'll always favour spectacular plays against a boring path to victory. Aside from mistreating cardboard, he's a dedicated board games player, loves a challenging video game and occasionally tries to sing with his choir.

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