Ultra Budget Brews – Lathiel, the Bounteous Dawn – EDHREC


(Brightmare | Art by Steven Belledin)

A brand new 12 months brings new experiences, new motivation, new targets. One purpose I’ve heard when speaking with folks or lurking on Twitter is reining of their spending on Magic. So, right here I’m, a month in, reminding you that you simply don’t should spend each final penny you may have on this recreation we get pleasure from. In reality, you may nonetheless take part and compete whereas spending a lot, a lot lower than you suppose. Part of the motive I write Ultra Budget Brews is as a result of I get pleasure from writing. I get pleasure out of being inventive and expressive, and that’s motive sufficient, however my different motivation has all the time been to assist folks be fiscally accountable whereas nonetheless doing issues they love. My hope is that writing a month-to-month article that builds decks utilizing low-cost items of cardboard can affect my small nook of the world in a constructive method.

Speaking of constructive impacts, how about that Commander Legends (that kind of transition is why I receives a commission the huge bucks)? I naturally gravitate in direction of specializing in playing cards that aren’t in the highlight, and, consequently, I sometimes don’t construct round the most up-to-date legends, as a substitute selecting to attend till the highlight is on one thing else and I get to really feel all particular and distinctive. Thankfully, since Commander Legends has 70ish new legends, a couple of have been certain to fall between the cracks; it might be inconceivable to present each legend the consideration they deserve. That being stated, I’d be hard-pressed to discover a extra ignored commander than Lathiel, the Bounteous Dawn.

Our Commander


  • Both the engine and the payoff
  • Gains counters equal to the life gained versus what number of occasions you acquire life
  • Is in a position to develop itself or one other creature
  • Is an impressive Unicorn


  • Small preliminary stats
  • Delayed set off
  • Converted mana price of four can really feel like 1 too many
  • Is Selesnya

There has been a push in the previous couple of years to mix engines with payoffs. The motive playing cards like Korvold, Fae-Cursed King, Chulane, Teller of Tales, and Aesi, Tyrant of Gyre Strait get so many sideways glances is exactly due to this. Doing what needs to be the work of two playing cards in a single card, particularly one that you simply all the time have entry to, is, maybe unsurprisingly, fairly highly effective. When balanced accurately, it may also be equally enjoyable. I believe Lathiel completely nails this steadiness.

Lifegain decks have entry to many, many engine playing cards. Soul’s Attendant, Rhox Faithmender, Kambal, Consul of Allocation, and something with Extort or lifelink all are playing cards that function engines. Lifegain decks even have entry to many payoffs. Some good examples are Sanguine Bond, Well of Lost Dreams, Ajani’s Pridemate, and Cliffhaven Vampire. Basically something that reads “do a lifegain, get a treat” qualifies.

There are undoubtedly a couple of examples of mixing engine with payoff, however they’re both inefficient, like Vizkopa Guildmage, Dawn of Hope, Vito, Thorn of the Dusk Rose, and Felidar Sovereign, or are (for our functions at the least) prohibitively costly, like Aetherflux Reservoir, Serra Ascendant, or Archangel of Thune. Lathiel bridges this hole properly by being low-cost to accumulate and pretty environment friendly.

Our Deck

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Cost: $31.86 (TCGPlayer)

One of the issues that units Lathiel aside from a lot of the lifegain engines that we’ve got entry to is that it doesn’t care what number of occasions you acquire life, however as a substitute how a lot life you gained. If you take a look at a card like Heliod, Sun-Crowned, you see the phrase “whenever you gain life”. This phrase is the Golden Corral of lifegain, prizing amount over high quality.

“I don’t care about the quality of the steak, so long as you keep ’em coming.” -Jeff Foxworthy, most likely

This is to not say there may be essentially something improper with Golden Corral. One of the greatest meals I’ve ever eaten was the time I went to Golden Corral after working my first marathon. Half-drunk on finish-line beer, and totally drunk on achievement, I stuffed a number of plates to the brim with biscuits, eggs, hash browns, and gravy, finisher’s medal nonetheless draped round my neck. Can amount be high quality? Sometimes.

Lathiel encourages us to go for high quality, however actually isn’t going to say no to amount. It doesn’t essentially care what number of occasions we acquire life as long as a number of life is gained. Whether we acquire 20 life from 20 totally different Soul Warden triggers or 20 life from casting a single Beacon of Immortality is immaterial. Both have the identical final result, specifically an entire pile of Lathiel counters. This opens us as much as a bunch of playing cards that do nothing however acquire life, like Sanguine Sacrament, Oracle of Nectars and Congregate. These are low-cost as a result of, exterior of very particular decks, they aren’t superb in Commander.

This concentrate on high quality can be useful as a result of a lot of the playing cards that acquire slightly little bit of life at a time are literally a bit too costly for us. Lifegain staples, like Soul’s Attendant, Essence Warden, and Sunscorch Regent, aren’t far over the $1 restrict, however they nonetheless didn’t make the lower. We nonetheless do play playing cards that give us slightly life at a time, like Soul Warden, Ajani’s Mantra, and Healer of the Pride, as a result of they’re nonetheless nice playing cards on this deck, and the worth that they supply provides up fairly shortly.

Stonks | Know Your Meme

There can be a +1/+1 counters theme working by means of our deck. The principal method we receives a commission off for all of our lifegain is by rising our creatures. Lathiel does this admirably, spreading the love round, however we additionally play Good-Fortune Unicorn, Cradle of Vitality, and Inscription of Abundance to assist on this division. Abzan Battle Priest, Tuskguard Captain, and Abzan Falconer are nice at making your pumped creatures considerably extra formidable. Inspiring Call serves as card draw and safety for our pumped creatures whereas Conclave Mentor makes all of them that a lot greater.

The remainder of our deck is stuffed with results that each deck wants entry to, specifically, ramp, wraths, spot elimination, and card draw. Here are examples of playing cards I’ve included for every of those:

Ramp: Marble Diamond, Rampant Growth, Cultivate

Wraths: Sublime Exhalation, Akroma’s Vengeance, Hour of Revelation

Spot Removal: Crush Contraband, Nature’s Claim, Return to Dust

Card Draw: Harmonize, Camaraderie, Inspiring Call

Notable Inclusions

Light of Promise

This mainly provides you model of Lathiel’s potential that occurs instantaneously, although you’re unable to unfold the counters round at will. Also, that is merely a less expensive model of Sunbond, which can be in the deck and is thrice as common as Light of Promise, for some motive. You gained’t all the time have entry to Lathiel, so having a backup plan is necessary.

Valorous Stance

This isn’t elimination on the stage of staples akin to Path to Exile or Swords to Plowshares, however it’s completely a strong card. It’s an instantaneous for 2 mana and can usually have the ability to take away the creature you want eliminated. It’s additionally modal, permitting you to guard no matter creature it’s essential. When your commander is a vital cog in your deck, safety is doubly necessary.

Evra, Halcyon Witness

Everyone ought to expertise blasting somebody into the deep reaches of area with Evra at the least as soon as. Is it dangerous? Absolutely. Is it enjoyable? Also completely. The threat is what makes it enjoyable. Also, if you happen to handle this with Lathiel on board, the sheer quantity of life you’ll acquire shall be fantastic to behold.

Loxodon Hierarch

This has an effectively sized physique that features you life, however this isn’t sufficient for this to make the lower in EDH, sometimes. What does assist this make the lower is the regeneration potential. We’re working 5 wraths on this deck, and none of them have the “creatures destroyed this way can’t be regenerated” clause that Wrath of God and Damnation have. This can result in ridiculous one-sided wraths. Also, though it’s an on-board trick, Hierarch sees little sufficient play that there’s a non-zero probability that your opponents neglect about the potential as properly. It’s not one thing you may rely on, however it’s going to actually come up.

Momentous Fall

This was $four as not too long ago as a 12 months in the past, however reprintings in Commander 2019 and Jumpstart have helped convey this right down to our stage.

Welcome again. We’ve missed you.

This has the potential to attract a whole grip of playing cards whereas additionally gaining a ton of life. “Sure, Dennis, you may undoubtedly Pongify my 10/10 Lathiel. In response, I’ll solid this, draw 10 playing cards, and use my Cradle of Vitality or Light of Promise to make one thing large. Same time subsequent week?” This card is nice. Get it whereas it’s value is low.

Notable Exclusions

As all the time, these are playing cards that I might add if I have been trying to up the energy stage of the deck, have been unconcerned with a strict price range limitation, or just had easy accessibility to a replica.

Angel of Destiny

Angel of Destiny is one in every of my favourite playing cards from Zendikar, and it interacts with lifegain decks in an fascinating method. It acts like lifelink, gaining life equal to the fight injury your creatures do, however your creatures with lifelink may also acquire life from that, basically providing you with double lifelink. DoubleLife. DoubleLink? I’m going with DoubleLink.

It additionally features your opponents a ton of life, however that isn’t one thing we’re overly involved about since we get to straight-up homicide anybody we attacked with Angel of Destiny if we’ve got 55 life at our finish step. This card is equal elements unusual and efficient and could be a slam-dunk inclusion right here.

Akroma’s Will

If you needed to name this white’s Craterhoof Behemoth, I wouldn’t argue with you. If you don’t have your commander out, it is a nice finisher, giving your workforce double strike and flying, which needs to be sufficient to kill a participant when you have a few creatures. If you may have Lathiel out, this will get really ridiculous, giving safety, indestructible, and lifelink as properly. This may even be an overcosted Heroic Intervention in a pinch. This card has a excessive flooring and ceiling. If you may play it, you completely ought to.

Rhox Faithmender

Sometimes there are playing cards which might be no-brainers. This is a lifegain deck. Rhox Faithmender doubles all of the life that you’d acquire. This card has unimaginable synergy with our decks gameplan and the deck is best with this in it. FIN.

…see additionally: Boon Reflection.

Heliod’s Intervention

Sanguine Sacrament is on this deck, however frankly, it’s not a very good card. That’s to not say that it doesn’t should be on this deck; it does and it overperforms right here, however if you wish to see what a extra palatable model of Sanguine Sacrament seems to be like, look no farther than Heliod’s Intervention. It prices the very same, is at instantaneous velocity, and features the identical quantity of life. Sacrament technically may be solid a second time because it goes again in to your deck, however I’ll take the artifact and enchantment destruction on Heliod’s Intervention over the chance of looping Sacrament 105 occasions out of 100, please and thanks.

Wall of Reverence

Wall of Reverence permits you to acquire life at your finish step equal to the best energy amongst creatures you management. It counts itself, so you’ll all the time acquire at the least one life, nevertheless it’s solely attainable to realize 10-20 life later in the recreation. You may also stack this set off with Lathiel’s finish step set off so that you simply’ll develop your creatures that rather more.

This card will not be with no caveat, nonetheless: due to the ‘if’ in Lathiel’s set off, it solely occurs if you happen to gained life earlier than you go to your finish step. If Wall of Reverence’s finish step set off is your solely supply of lifegain occurring that flip, Lathiel gained’t set off, and gained’t acquire any counters from Wall’s set off.

That being stated, if you happen to aren’t gaining life on this deck on every of your turns, you most likely weren’t successful that recreation anyhow.

End Step

What do you consider this deck? Is it the form of deck you’d get pleasure from enjoying? Were there any slam-dunk playing cards that I missed? Let me know under! In different information, after many months off, the ballot returns! Let me know which of those commanders you’d wish to see get the Ultra Budget remedy. Until subsequent time!

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