Welcome to Wednesday Brawl #2! Brawl will be back for another 24 hours on Wednesday and we have some exciting news and decks to share with you this week. If you missed last week’s edition you can check it out here, where we discuss the tri-colored commanders of Core Set 2020. If you are new to Brawl, check out the guide to the format start with the beginner’s guide here!
Clarification of Starting Time
We wanted to first start this week’s column with an important notice. MTG Arena had previously advertised that Brawl Wednesday would be available every Wednesdays for 24 hours, from 8 AM PST according to October’s State of the Game.
This was not to be the case last week, as when I got back home from work the Brawl queue had already gone! It looks like currently all MTG Arena events are starting at 8 AM UTC instead, which is actually 12 AM PST. People have also reported that it is actually when the daily quests reset. We will confirm once it becomes available and keep an eye out for any changes but until further notice it looks like this is how it will be.
How to Play Brawl
Another frequently asked question since last week was how to actually play Brawl on MTG Arena, so we will also go through that today and add to our Brawl Format Guide.
First step is to have your deck set to be a Brawl deck. If you import any of our Brawl decks on MTG Arena Zone, this will be done automatically for you. If you are building one from scratch, then make sure to set it correctly in the deck builder as below. You can do this before (top image) or after creation (bottom image) of the deck. Select your Commander first to make deck building a lot easier as it only shows the cards you can play according to its color identity.
After that is done, you are ready to battle! To find the Wednesday Brawl queue, make sure to have “All Play Modes” set to on (left image) and you will see Wednesday Brawl below the “Find Match” queues (right image) once Wednesday Brawl is available.
Other Brawl Communities
Before we dive into this week’s Brawl deck highlights, there has been some developments in the MTG Arena Brawl community. Since we cannot play Brawl on demand as of yet, players are seeking ways to connect with others and play Brawl outside of Wednesday Brawl times.
- Brawl Hall: This is a Discord server created by the popular MTG YouTuber and streamer Merchant. There are over 3000 people currently in the server that you can connect with to play Brawl on demand and have friendly chat with each other.
- ArenaBrawl.net: This is a new website that allows you to enter your MTG Arena ID and find other players that are currently available for Direct Challenge. You can find players interested in Standard or Friendly/Historic Brawl, and the creators are working on a chat feature as well.
Lords of Eldraine Commanders
This week our focus is on the mono colored legendary creatures of Throne of Eldraine. These commanders get better as more sets are added, especially with Theros: Beyond Death around the corner where we can expect Devotion to be a key mechanic. Since Oko is now banned as well we can expect the creature based commanders to perform better (except Yorvo, who was excellent againt Oko).
Linden, the Steadfast Queen (Decklist)
I have to admit, Linden is not good. Lifegain is not really a huge incentive to make a whole Brawl deck out of, and aggressive white weenie strategy is not in a good place as a whole at the moment. Still, for completion sake we have a deck here that attempts to go wide, gain a bit of life and if all else fails, rely on the end game cards like Dawn of Hope and Divine Visitation.
On that note, a better mono white commander for a similar strategy is Ajani, Strength of the Pride which we have a similar Brawl deck for him also.
Gadwick, the Wizened (Decklist)
Gadwick is a very good card, and even a better commander. Our version is mostly a tempo/control deck if you like drawing cards and countering your opponent’s important spells and chip away with your creatures. On my first test run with the deck, we faced a turn 3 Shifting Ceratops (accelerated by Gilded Goose) which there was no way to beat. Ugin, the Ineffable was added just in case.
Ayara, First of Locthwain (Decklist)
Ayara is a decent commander, but would probably serve better as an ancillary to Korvold, Fae-Cursed King as mono black does not give a good depth with the cards we have in Standard so far. The focus is thus on smaller creatures to trigger her ability regularly, and once they have done their job (such as Yarok’s Fenlurker) they can be sacrificed for value. Your major win condition would be a big Command the Dreadhorde. For a similar deck, see the Rankle Brawl deck.
Torbran, Thane of Red Fell (Decklist)
Torbran probably suffered the most during the Oko Brawl meta. It enhances your individually weak cards in your deck and after it got turned into an Elk you felt hopeless as you stared into a 6 loyalty Oko. Now no more! You get to control when Torbran comes out and dictate how your cards damage your opponent.
Yorvo, Lord of Garenbrig (Decklist)
Yorvo, Lord of Garenbrig is one of the strongest green commanders (next to Nissa, Who Shakes the World). Your opponent would need a good answer for it as it can grow very quickly. He also costs only three mana and combined with the natural ramping powers of green, he can continuously come out and apply pressure to your opponent while you draw bigger creatures off the top of your deck with the help of Guardian Project and Beast Whisperer. The sub theme is +1/+1 counters and mono green has a surprising amount of cards that support it.
Budget Brawl Deck of the Week
Angrath, Captain of Chaos (Decklist)
Continuing our sacrifice theme from Ayara, Angrath works even better as its color identity is black and red – giving us access to cards true to its nature that includes powerhouses such as Mayhem Devil. Its passive ability makes your creatures primed for aggressive attacks and a sub Amass theme that gives you free creatures to sacrifice or turn into bigger creatures.
This budget version works relatively well on its own for casual play, but there are a tonne of upgrade options. The most obvious ones are Chandra, Acolyte of Flame, Widespread Brutality, Dreadhorde Butcher and can be supported by cards like Murderous Rider and Liliana, Dreadhorde General. Legion Warboss and Krenko, Tin Street Kingpin are also excellent creatures that fit the theme of the deck perfectly. Have fun upgrading the deck!
Thanks for joining us this week, and we look forward to further updates on MTG Arena’s stance on formats being available other than Standard. We also have our Discord server you can join if you have any questions or need any help!