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MTG Commander/Elder Dragon Highlander • View topic - Jeleva : best strategies?

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 Post subject: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jan-11 7:33 am 

Joined: 2013-Jan-07 1:45 am
Age: Dragon
is an interesting commander and one that I thought would be less fun - and effective - than it turned out to be when I played it. I played the actual precon a couple times, and it's ok. Not the most focused precon. And I've played my own list several times. One thing I didn't realize was the chaos of it feels very grixis-ish: exiling a bunch of cards from your own and everyone else's decks gives the games an interesting flavor. It makes combos way less reliable, and tutors less effective, and in longer games makes decking a real possibility - and your big eldrazi that's supposed to reshuffle for you might get exiled.

As I thought about , I thought about including various themes:

1) free spells. Big spells, which we cast for free. Should include additional ways of casting spells for free, and not just rely on Jeleva to do it. Of the big spells, we want some that actually win the game, and not just stuff that draws more cards, or endlessly forking s and s. Those things are cool, but I really want stuff that increases my own board presence so that I can then get value out of the extra turns and attack steps.



2) big spells. Could throw in some stuff that benefits from the high-average casting cost of our spells. I'm not quite sure how much of this is appropriate. The ones I like so far are and I want to try . I want to consider, but I don't have much of a graveyard theme going on.


3) copying those big spells. This seems valuable. I'm including , , , , and . I don't want to much of this cause these are dead flips to . There's basically no way to get a spell on the stack before 's trigger so can cast a at it. It is, however, very nice to have these in your hand when you're looking at the big spells on you're about to cast for free. is just so cool with all the great targets. at or works, to say nothing of and .

4) top-deck manipulation. This is really helpful with herself, and also for a lot of the other ways of casting things for free. , , all rely on the "blind flip" of the top card of your library to cast it for free. Any way to make that less blind is probably worth it. I've been using , , , , , , and of course, . I've been more impressed with here than I have in any other deck. I know it looks weak, but really, it's fantastic. And is impressive because it can set up more than one spell for to exile.

5) herself: she needs protection, and haste, and ways of being recast, or bouncing her to your hand.




6) powerful symmetric effects of which we break the symmetry: I like including big cards with massive effects, especially when they either play into our strategy or just don't hurt it.



Also, utility spells that seem to work well with all this: A couple tutors are good: . I like in a deck based on casting big things twice or for free. I find to be marginally on theme; and a couple draw spells like would be good. In my meta, seems like a good call for stopping combo and wrath-every-turn decks.

This all lead me to this list I've been testing.


Other considerations:
I thought about an exile-theme. Should we try to play to something like and ? These might make playable. If so, what about ?

These are the most synnergystic themes I could come up with, and combine into a deck for this. I'm sort of sad the exile-theme didn't work out very well, but man, is terrible. Maybe if I combine that with something like ? This could go in a more combo-y direction.

What are other people's experience with Jeleva? What other themes are appropriate? Did I miss some important spells?

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Kothophed (mono black control, ETB abuse)
Teferi, Temporal Archmage (blue pillowfort superfriends)
Glint-Eye Nephilim (combat tricks, card draw, & creature pump)
Oloro Upkeep Tribal (enchantment-based control)
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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jan-12 2:58 am 

Joined: 2013-Aug-20 4:37 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Boston
Edit: Sorry, I missed the actual question you were asking and just provided deck advice. There are basically two themes you can go with for an effective Jeleva deck: big spells or mill. There really isn't a good way to jam both of them into one deck, IMO.
--
Firstly, I think you may need more land sources of mana. I count 31 lands and 9 artifacts that provide spell juice. Since you don't have any counterspells, somebody is going to stick an , or such the like and just ruin your day. I'd probably cut , , and at minimum, adding back in 2 lands and . Dropping for is probably good if you are trying to ramp to 4 as fast as possible, but if you aren't trying to always go for the fast Jeleva, the Dynamo is Probably going to be better. Either way, you probably want to get a few more lands up in there at the cost of a few spells. I'd recommend fetches, with /// if you don't have the big dollar ones. They'll help the mana and give you a few more ways to shuffle post .

is another option for giving Jeleva haste.

is a big ol' sac of crap. Hitting won't matter because you have nothing to cast with it. I would recommend if you want a giant thing that is going to let you cast stuff for free, but maybe this is one of the slots that you can turn into land.

is probably a better card than since RtB doesn't allow you to set up the top of your library for a free cast.

, , and are all fairly invisible cards that will give you something to do in the early turns (and any turn where you have one spare mana lying around) and will give you a nice subtle shaping to your draws.


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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jan-14 3:54 am 

Joined: 2013-Jan-07 1:45 am
Age: Dragon

_________________
Decklists:
Kothophed (mono black control, ETB abuse)
Teferi, Temporal Archmage (blue pillowfort superfriends)
Glint-Eye Nephilim (combat tricks, card draw, & creature pump)
Oloro Upkeep Tribal (enchantment-based control)
and more:Decklists


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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jan-14 11:33 pm 

Joined: 2011-Dec-23 3:22 am
Age: Wyvern
Hi!! I'm also tryiing to build a Jeleva deck, so I'll most probably take inspiration :D from here, since I think your ideas are a good start to find my own way... :wink:

Anyway, have you considered ? I think it's a card with a lot of potential, especially in a deck where you really need to know the first X cards of your deck...

is, in my opinion, a "must" as most of the tutors, in the end the more tutors you have, the better is for you...it's a Grixis deck, so you have plenty of "tutor cards" to go with...

...? :shock: No thanks... :D I haven't sucidial tendencies (or,at least, not so much :D )

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Just remember what ol' Jack Burton does when the earth quakes, and the poison arrows fall from the sky, and the pillars of Heaven shake. Yeah, Jack Burton just looks that big ol' storm right square in the eye and he says, "Give me your best shot, pal. I can take it."


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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jan-15 12:44 am 
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Joined: 2012-Nov-27 4:39 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Midgard


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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jan-15 4:55 am 

Joined: 2013-Jan-07 1:45 am
Age: Dragon

_________________
Decklists:
Kothophed (mono black control, ETB abuse)
Teferi, Temporal Archmage (blue pillowfort superfriends)
Glint-Eye Nephilim (combat tricks, card draw, & creature pump)
Oloro Upkeep Tribal (enchantment-based control)
and more:Decklists


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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jan-15 5:20 am 

Joined: 2011-Dec-23 3:22 am
Age: Wyvern

_________________
Just remember what ol' Jack Burton does when the earth quakes, and the poison arrows fall from the sky, and the pillars of Heaven shake. Yeah, Jack Burton just looks that big ol' storm right square in the eye and he says, "Give me your best shot, pal. I can take it."


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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jan-15 5:38 am 
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Joined: 2011-Feb-07 3:37 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Danbury, CT

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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jan-15 6:24 am 

Joined: 2013-Jan-07 1:45 am
Age: Dragon

_________________
Decklists:
Kothophed (mono black control, ETB abuse)
Teferi, Temporal Archmage (blue pillowfort superfriends)
Glint-Eye Nephilim (combat tricks, card draw, & creature pump)
Oloro Upkeep Tribal (enchantment-based control)
and more:Decklists


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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jan-16 4:53 am 

Joined: 2011-Dec-23 3:22 am
Age: Wyvern

_________________
Just remember what ol' Jack Burton does when the earth quakes, and the poison arrows fall from the sky, and the pillars of Heaven shake. Yeah, Jack Burton just looks that big ol' storm right square in the eye and he says, "Give me your best shot, pal. I can take it."


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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jul-26 5:13 am 

Joined: 2013-Jan-07 1:45 am
Age: Dragon
Man, this deck is still awesome. Time for an update:

out :
(weak)
(wasn't necessary)
(just replaced with vamp tutor)
(replaced with an instant copier instead of a permanent copier)
(ditto)
(helped others too much; not enough card draw to really bust it)
(weak)
(this deck is already dickish...)

in :
(its a draw that doesn't draw. Also can't beat its spot on the curve.)
(better than mystical)
(also better than mystical)
(in for chandra)
(in for quanar)
(in for fun - wanted another credible threat on a creature)
(bouncing jeleva is good)
(turns out, it does literally everything you want in this deck... top deck manipulation, recasting jeleva, bouncing blockers, etc)


This deck has been a ton of fun; also kind of intense in a way. Big things start happening fast; it really challenges your opponents and starts asking questions that need to be answered.

_________________
Decklists:
Kothophed (mono black control, ETB abuse)
Teferi, Temporal Archmage (blue pillowfort superfriends)
Glint-Eye Nephilim (combat tricks, card draw, & creature pump)
Oloro Upkeep Tribal (enchantment-based control)
and more:Decklists


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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jul-26 6:19 am 
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Joined: 2011-Jan-02 5:25 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Costa La Haya, capital del ducado Holanda
What about multiple attack steps? You'd get multiple Jeleva triggers.

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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Jul-29 3:58 pm 

Joined: 2011-Mar-02 8:37 am
Age: Drake
My Jeleva deck is quite different than yours (it focuses on casting opponents' spells rather than my own) but one card I'm always happy to see is . Jeleva's exile can be hit or miss, especially the first go for four, and if there's nothing of note exiled because you were unlucky or you already managed to cast it, people will avoid killing her so you can't cast her again. gets her back in the command center and gives you mana to cast her again.

It's also just an all-around good card and can save your other creatures from theft or exile. Keep in mind that the sacrifice is a mana ability so it doesn't use the stack (i.e., it's faster than everything, including split second).

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 Post subject: Re: Jeleva : best strategies?
AgePosted: 2014-Aug-14 3:21 am 
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Joined: 2010-Jun-01 10:21 am
Age: Drake
Location: Montreal, QC
Have you tried ? I fired it off once in a Jeleva attack step, then found and cast from my hand of 75+ cards. My opponents were not amused, though this may have been because it was the first of my extra turns. You may want to try it for a more dickish Jeleva build.

I since took out all of these cards and replaced them with weaker but more interactive stuff. Things such as which is somewhat suboptimal, but 26 power for free (+ flashback) is good all things considered.

I also like and in my Jeleva deck. One of the problems is frequently whiffing on her EtB and then being stuck with her in play. These cards get rid of Jeleva as part of their effect and can also be cast with her ability. Oh yeah, and they also do cool stuff when they resolve as well :D

Anyway, I'm with you on Jeleva - she's pretty awesome to build around.


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