We all play EDH for different reasons. For some it’s the fun of playing political side games. For others it’s building degenerate combo decks. Some players don’t care if they win, they just play for the hilarity that sometimes ensues. For me, I like playing old obscure cards that would never see play anywhere else. Now I say that, but I am not adverse to playing mainstream cards. My favorite way to play EDH is with Planechase cards. Planechase EDH can lead to some very interesting board states and very funny turns of events. You can go from dominant board position to nothing in the span of a planar die roll.
Child of Alara EDH
My favorite EDH deck to play is Child of Alara. I got the inspiration for the deck from it’s creator Carlos Gutierrez. This is a lands style deck where most of your combo pieces are lands! Lands are great. You can’t counter them, they are somewhat difficult for your opponent to interact with, and they are easily recurrable. The degree to which you lock other players out depends on how you play the deck. You can as fast as turn 3 Child of Alara and continually wipe the board, or you can durdle around, assemble your pieces, and then lock everyone out. I like to play it diplomatically. I like to set up lose-lose situations where if you attack me it’s not good for either of us. Either way how to play it is completely up to you!Decklist: Fetch Lands: Flooded Strand Windswept Heath Bloodstained Mire Polluted Delta Wooded Foothills Misty Rainforest Verdant Catacombs Scalding Tarn Marsh Flats Arid Mesa Colored Lands: Taiga Tundra Underground Sea Volcanic Island Scrubland Savannah Bayou Plateau Badlands Tropical Island Sacred Foundry Godless Shrine Breeding Pool Hallowed Fountain Temple Garden Watery Grave Steam Vents Stomping Ground Overgrown Tomb Snow-Covered Forest Snow-Covered Plains Dryad Arbor Utility Lands: Arena Tolaria West Academy Ruins Maze of Ith Kor Haven Mouth of Ronom Boseiju, Who Shelters All Deserted Temple Cephalid Coliseum Glacial Chasm Emeria, the Sky Ruin Nomad Stadium Petrified Field Vesuva Bojuka Bog Volrath’s Stronghold Cycle Lands: Secluded Steppe Traquil Thicket Lonely Sandbar Land Destruction: Ghost Quarter Tectonic Edge Wasteland Strip Mine Sacrifice Outlets: Phyrexian Tower Miren, the Moaning Well High Market Manlands: Creeping Tar Pit Creatures: Oracle of Mul Daya Sun Titan Child of Alara (General) Azusa, Lost but Seeking Drift of Phantasms Voidmage Prodigy Meloku, the Clouded Mirror Kokusho, the Evening Star Phantasmal Image Planar Guide Genesis Captain Sisay Eternal Witness Dark Confidant Knight of the Reliquary Spells: Treasure Hunt Ad Nauseam Mystical Tutor Enlightened Tutor Vampiric Tutor Demonic Tutor Beseech the Queen Wargate Eladamri’s Call Realms Uncharted Crop Rotation Summer Bloom Beast Within Life from the Loam Entomb Enchantments: Burgeoning Prismatic Omen Exploration Manabond Sylvan Library Seismic Assault Artifacts Nim Deathmantle Zuran Orb Crucible of Worlds Birthing Pod Planeswalkers: Jace, the Mind Sculptor
This particular build is not budget friendly and shouldn’t be played if you don’t like tutors or locking down the board. This deck plays similarly to a legacy Lands type deck. That said let’s get down to the nuts and bolts of the deck.
Child of Alara + a sacrifice outlet + Emeria, the Sky Ruin.
Recurrable board sweeper effect. If you have 7 Plains, an Emeria, a sacrifice outlet, and Child of Alara in play, you are in a really good position. Whenever you go to fetch or play lands you almost always want to be putting Plains type lands into play. Being able to repeatedly destroy everyone’s board will likely win you the game. One thing to keep in mind is that this combo only works if Child of Alara goes to your graveyard. You really don’t need to worry about your opponent exiling the Child from the graveyard because you can just move it to the commander zone and then recast it.
There are a few ways this deck wins. The Child/Emeria/Sac outlet combo is just there for giving you the board control. Once you have board control, you can win with by slowly dealing damage ala Creeping Tar-Pit, or you can combo with Meloku + Seismic Assault. You can also just beat them down with Child of Alara general damage. This deck has many ways to win!
Glacial Chasm + Zuran Orb + Crucible of Worlds basically say that you take no damage from combat ever. It’s ok to pay some life to the Glacial Chasm’s cumulative upkeep cost if you would be taking more damage from your opponents creatures. This should buy you plenty of time to tutor for, or otherwise assemble you board control and win conditions.
Treasure Hunt and Ad Nauseam are rock stars in this deck. Since the deck is mostly lands it’s not uncommon to draw 10 cards for 5 life or so with Ad Nauseam, or draw 5-6 cards with Treasure Hunt. Dark Confidant is also great because more often than not you are revealing land and basically drawing a free card. Life from the Loam is often a 1G draw 3 because in this deck your lands are your spells for the most part.
Most everything else is either a tutor or helps you put multiple lands into play a turn. Entomb is often a tutor for Life from the Loam, or if you already have that, it’s a tutor for any land in your deck. Crop rotation is the same. It lets you trade a less-than-useful land into something more powerful like Maze of Ith or Glacial Chasm. While there isn’t really a Birthing Pod chain, Birthing Podding away Child of Alara into Sun Titan is the nuts.
This deck is really strong against creature decks. Your recurrable board sweeper just annihilates such decks. If a player amasses a token army, all you have to do is tutor up your Planar Guide and watch your opponent get angry. The deck is inherently weak to combo, but Voidmage Prodigy helps here. With your Emeria combo how great is a recurrable counterspell?
If you have the cards or if you can afford it, this is a really neat deck to play. It has many lines of play on a given turn and is quite complicated and requires a lot of practice. If you can master this deck then you will usually be the odds on favorite to win the game. Another thing that I love about this deck is you usually fly under the radar in most games especially if you are playing against people who have never played against it. It’s a nice feeling when you are just doing innocuous things all game, durdling around, and then locking everyone out and winning. As always if you have any questions about the deck or would like to discuss it with me feel free to email me: Dshannon2004@gmail.com or hit me on twitter @side2004.
Until next time thanks for reading and may you go forth and be your EDH group’s frustration.
“Don’t sweat the petty stuff and don’t pet the sweaty stuff”