The Scoop: Elementary EDH – Wonderwalls


I’d brought attention to Arcades, the Strategist in one of my spoiler review articles for M19, primarily because I liked its superiority to Doran, the Siege Tower in EDH. Not only are the abilities far better for a Wall offensive deck, but the color identity is more congruent with Walls. I had a brief discussion at my LGS in regards to Arcades and that he really has no creativity or ingenuity in his build. Play Arcades, play walls…but still, I wanted to see what a Wall EDH deck would look like.

The below deck is a first-go and will most definitely evolve as I get a better handle on how it should function. Right now, I feel it is a bit too weak on legit control cards and answers to removal. Also, there are few Walls that can compete with some larger beasties, and when your deck is dependent on combat, it can make things difficult to succeed.

Deck List

  • Commander
    • Arcades, the Strategist
  • Creatures
    • Stinging Barrier
    • Fog Bank
    • Wall of Frost
    • Geist of the Archives
    • Wall of Blossoms
    • Perimeter Captain
    • Jaddi Offshoot
    • Wild-Field Scarecrow
    • Cathedral Membrane
    • Hover Barrier
    • Guard Gomazoa
    • Gomazoa
    • Wall of Denial
    • Wall of Resurgence
    • Nyx-Fleece Ram
    • Jeskai Barricade
    • Wall of Reverence
    • Sprouting Phytohydra
    • Ludevic’s Test Subject
    • Tree of Redemption
    • Windreaver
    • Rhox Faithmender
    • Verdant Sun’s Avatar
    • Hundred-Handed One
    • Palisade Giant
    • Abzan Beastmaster
    • Diviner Spirit
    • Deadwood Treefolk
    • Stingerfling Spider
    • One-Eyed Scarecrow
    • Stalwart Shield-Bearers
    • Overgrown Battlement
    • Traproot Kami
    • Axebane Guardian
    • Consulate Skygate
    • Guardians of Meletis
    • Angelic Wall
    • Fairgrounds Warden
    • Cryptic Annelid
    • Jelenn Sphinx
    • Mistmeadow Witch
    • Tempest Caller
    • Juniper Order Ranger
    • Void Grafter
    • Bant Battlemage
    • Elusive Krasis
    • Jaddi Lifestrider
    • Llanowar Augur
    • Stonehorn Dignitary
    • Spirit of the Hearth
    • Benthic Infiltrator
    • Blazing Archon
  • Enchantments
    • Assault Formation
    • Sight of the Scalelords
    • Brave the Sands
    • Cloud Cover
  • Instants/Sorceries
    • Tower Defense
    • Curse of the Swine
    • Cyclonic Rift
    • Terminus
    • Slaughter the Strong
    • Swan Song
    • Overwhelming Denial
    • Counterlash
  • Lands
    • Tranquil Expanse
    • Selesnya Guildgate
    • Temple of Plenty
    • Simic Guildgate
    • Thornwood Falls
    • Tranquil Cove
    • Glacial Fortress
    • Seaside Citadel
    • Plains x9
    • Forest x9
    • Island x9

So there it is…bet you can’t guess what it’s supposed to do. Play Walls, attack with Walls. Not fancy.

The deck does have some non-wall creatures that can help with survival and control, such as Blazing Archon, Spirit of the Hearth, and Jaddi Lifestrider. These cards don’t have defender, but most, if not all, do synergize with the high-toughness element of the deck.

The Enchantments have great synergy with the Walls, providing extra toughness, Vigilance, extra blocking and removal protection. I included Assault Formation in case Arcades is getting effectively manipulated/controlled by your opponents. It also provides toughness boost if its other abilities aren’t necessary.

Abzan can be a powerful ally for Arcades, not just Dromoka.

The control instants and sorceries aren’t the best, but it was what I had on-hand. Tower Defense was a nasty card in my 60-card Modern version of this deck, so I included it here. On a side note, I think Curse of the Swine is a bit underrated. It exiles instead of destroys and the return of 2/2 Boar tokens isn’t that bad. I mean, all Walls can survive a 2/2, and those Boars are likely to disrupt any tribal synergy your opponent had. It’s not the best, but for Blue, I think it’s a decent choice for removal.

What I believe people will find quickly with decks like this is that Walls aren’t designed for offensive combat, and their abilities reflect that. The advantage Walls have, in general, is that you will get more “power”/toughness for the CMC with Arcades out than most other players. But, the power/toughness/CMC advantage trails off as the match progresses, as your opponent can more regularly cast 6/6 angels or dragons with crazy abilities and you’re still playing 0/5 Walls that give you 2 life. I think this deck is destined for a slow death as it realizes it can’t keep up against EDH decks that thrive in the late game this Wall deck generally will lead to.

–Dalton

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