Commander Exercise 47 – A Cruel Angel’s Thesis

Welcome back to Commander Exercise, the series where I build EDH decks for fun and to improve my deck building skills.

This time I got asked by various people both on Reddit and on Instagram to build an Angel tribal deck but there is a catch: I cannot use Kaalia as my Commander! So the first thing I did was looking for a Commander for the deck, so to know what card colors I could use. After a quick research I decided to go with a Commander that directly supported the tribe.

My final choice was to build a deck with Lyra Dawnbriger as Commander!

The deck is an Angel Tribal as requested but it also has some small shenanigans based on gaining life thanks to our Commander that will also give lifelink to all our Angels.

The deck is a typical aggro deck but the average CMC of Angels is pretty high so we will spend the first few turns ramping to ensure to be able to cast our creatures. For this a good starting hand is one the prioritize making mana instead of having creatures to play in the early game

The deck has a cost around 250$ and you can find the decklist by clicking here.

As I told before, the average cmc of Angels is pretty high and so we are running more ramp pieces than usual, most of them are rocks. Pristine Talisman is a mana rock that will also gain us life and so it works well with the small lifegain sub-theme.
Herald of War and Starnheim Aspirant are two creatures that will discount the cost of our Angel making them much cheaper to cast, with the Herald that could reduce it by a lot if we are able to put many counters on it.

Together with our Commander, these are the cards that will give more power and keywords to our army of Angels.
Angel of Jubilation will also act as a hate piece for those decks that want to pay life or sacrifice creatures as part of their game plan. Archangel of Thune works well with our life gain plan and could potentially grow our creatures a lot.

These are all our other angels that don’t cover a particular role in the deck. Most of them will also work well with our lifegain sub-theme!
Angel of Destiny is probably the most powerful piece here as it will also double up as a win condition, gaining us a lot of life and giving us the possibility to knock other players out of the game.

Card Advantage
We have two types of card advantage: getting back cards from our graveyard, like Emeria Shepherd, or things that will let us draw when we gain life, like Dawn of Hope.
Expedition Map is here to let us fetch one of our utility lands.
Here we have Bruna but in the deck there is also Gisela and so there is the possibility to meld them!

These are the cards that we are going to use to interact with our opponents’ boards (or graveyards in the case of Angel of Finality). Most of these are staple but we also have cards that we have chosen for the deck because they are Angels, like Angel of Serenity.
Chancellor of the Annex is cool to have in your starting hand but also when dropped on the field is really good to slow down our opponents; a thing that can be clutch considering the high cost of our cards.

By relying heavily on creatures with high mana value is important to be able to protect them to avoid having all of our efforts being vanished by a wrath. Luckily many angels, like Angelic Guardian, have abilities that will let us protect our board.
Others instead, like Angel of the Dire Hour, will protect us against other players that will try to attack us with their creatures!

Bishop of Wings isn’t an angel but works well with them, giving us lifegain for each time one of them enters the battlefield and also replacing them when they die with some Spirit tokens, leaving us not completely open after wraths and removals.

Mostly regular Plains with some utility lands. Myriad Landscape will ramp us a little so to help us casting our big Angels more easily while Seraph Sanctuary will work really well with both our themes; War Room and Arch of Orazca will both give us some kind of card advantage but sorely the most powerful land of deck is certainly Emeria. Emeria, in my opinion, is a card that should go in any mono white deck because, when its ability is online, it will carry a whole game to victory on its own, continuously giving us back creatures that will let us recover from removals and easily get back into the game. 95% of the time you are going to get Emeria with the Expedition Map.

I hope you enjoyed this post. Let me know how you would have built it differently, what you will have added and what not…
Also don’t forget to tell me what I should try to build next.


  1. Any thoughts on adding Platinum Angel to the mix? Or is the cmc too high for how fragile it is to removal?
    I always liked it because it becomes such a target that your opponents focus on it thus allowing you to get some other pieces on the board that might actually help you more in the long run. But 7 is a LOT of mana for one card.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So, I may have missed the link to the overall decklist, but I love using flying synergies in my angel tribal decks. So, using Radiant Archangel and Rally of the Wings can be super fun!



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