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Budget Commander #45: Emmara, Soul of the Accord


Hello folks! I hope your day is well!

I enjoy New Emmara

Emmara, Soul of the Accord

She's fun! She's a solid, on-curve leader who suggests tapping her for making soldiers. That could include attacking and bring some early heat. It could include convoking and tapping her to drop some fun stuff. It could also include other effects as well.

And Newmara's really cheap right now as well. She's just $1.99 on coolstuffinc.com as of the writing of this piece.

Commander finance is odd, as some clear hitters cost a ton of money (Doubling Season) but many don't. Cards that were printed a bunch of other supplemental sets like the Commander series can be cheap. Zounds, are there a lot of cards that suit a particular deck's need that are so specific that they don't have any major additional Commander taxes. So, finding those is awesome. Many cards recently printed also haven't been up-dated yet for higher Commander usage.

Thus these budget decks of mine tend to have three types of cards - new cheap stuff, older lesser known cheap stuff that fits this theme, and cheaper Commander support cards.

Each of these decks must come in under the budget of the previous one. That last entry was for Arixmethes, Slumbering Isle and came in at $32.77. Thus, my cards have to come in at near mint, under that price.


Budget Emmara | Commander | Abe Sargent

Budget - $32.73

Target -$32.77

And there we are! FOUR Cents cheaper baby!

This deck is going to want to do a few things.

  1. Make tokens. It's Selesnya. It's a leader that already makes tokens. You want more to join the club.
  2. Use those tokens to do other things. Convoke! Attacking! Tapping for effects!
  3. Partner with the first two and supplement this strategy.

Making tokens in these colors is easy. You have mass-produced rares like Decree of Justice that have bulk prices. You have cards like Nomads' Assembly and Cloudgoat Ranger.

You also have Sprout Swarm.

Sprout Swarm

This is a perfect card in this build, as I am sure you can see. It's both a token making and a creature-tapping dork, so it plays into two roles quite nicely. I just discussed it last week in my Top Ten Forgotten Commons article. The basic point is this:

It can be used for making stuff and making more stuff as you have additional stuff to use from the previous makings of said stuff.

Oketra the True
Tolsimir Wolfblood

Oketra might be a recent mythic rare, but she's also just a pair of dollars. The other Amonkhet Gods are similarly cheap right now, so if they fit your theme, why not grab some and toss them in? Oketra is good because she can make tokens for your deck, and you should easily have enough dorks out to swing and block. Her 3/6 double strike and indestructible is very pertinent here. Similarly, he might be old-school, but Tolsimir loves this deck, and him and Emmara are clearly best friends.

Leonin Warleader
Haazda Marshal

I enjoy swinging and making tokens. Newmara can do it! Why not include some other forces that reward swinging at someone's face with more bodies to swing at someone's face? On the first turn after you have used Leonin Warleader, you have six power of dorks across three bodies for four mana.

Similarly, the Marshal is also solid. Cast it on turn one, then Emmara on turn two. Then swing with both and make a dork. Next turn you can swing with the newly minted token and start making the Marshal work, assuming no other creatures were produced.

Did you see how many Guilds of Ravnica cards we added in?

In addition to Newmara and the Marshal, we have a lot of cards here:

Crush Contraband
Venerated Loxodon
Arboretum Elemental
District Guide
Sprouting Renewal
Conclave Guildmage
Join Shields
Ledev Champion
Worldsoul Colossus

I particularly enjoy the Champion and Venerated Loxodon here as they reward the convoking of Emmara and others. Did you tap Emmara to make the Champion better? Great! Now you get a 1/1 for free that you can tap again later for other things! Ditto the Loxodon, who wants you to cast it for free and give five +1/+1 counters to distribute to the tappers.

The rest of these include a strong smattering of utility, such as removal and indestructible making of your dorks. Enjoy the Guilds of Ravnica invasion!

In addition to the Champion just mentioned, my deck also has a bit of a self-tapping theme! Did you notice these cards?

Survivors' Encampment
Holdout Settlement

Grove of the Guardian
Symbiotic Deployment
Glare of Subdual

Cultivator's Caravan
Skysovereign, Consul Flagship

Now the key card in here is Symbiotic Deployment. Skipping your draw step is a small price to pay if you are drawing 3-5 cards per turn here. Just tapping your leader will produce another creature and help to pay for future costs. The massive ability to break this card in a Selesnya shell is powerful and definitely worth including here.

Another card worth including here is the already-Selesnya Glare of Subdual. You can tap a token to tap a good creature or three. You can use it defensively to lock down problematic creatures that out-smash your tokens. I like it here offensively to tap down potential blockers, particularly for Emmara. You can tap and swing and make another dork while doing so.

I wish I had the cash for Earthcraft! It's a perfect fit here too.

I was able to include a pair of Vehicles. I could have tossed in more, but I didn't feel that was necessary. Just Emmara and one 1/1 token can tap to make the Flagship fly, and you can shoot stuff for three damage each time. It's also good at taking a mana rock like Cultivator's Caravan and turning it into a 5/5 force.

Enjoy these cards!

Stonybrook Schoolmaster
Veteran of the Depths
God-Favored General

Since we have a lot of ways of rewarding tapping your general, I figured we should add in a few more cards that play into that space. The best, by far is Stonybrook Schoolmaster, who also makes a dork when tapped. Veteran of the Depths can pump as it's tapped, to make a bigger powerhouse. And God-Favored General wants to tap, so it can untap and then make two soldiers for three mana. All of these are playing into Emmara's space quite nicely.

While this is not a populate deck, there's no reason not to cross the streams, right?

Growing Ranks
Sundering Growth
Wayfaring Temple
Vitu-Ghazi Guildmage
Scion of Vitu-Ghazi
Rootborn Defenses

The Sundering Growth and Rootborn Defenses are great as they help your theme to make more dorks while also helping your theme to not die by destroying key things or keeping your stuff alive. The Scion is strong as you can always just get a 1/1 Bird if there are no other options to increase. All of these cards continue to push and help our theme along quite nicely!

Note that Swords to Plowshares has been printed so often that the Battlebond version is under a buck. That feels like the first time we've been able to say that for an era!

Cards you could add include Divine Visitation, Hero of Bladehold, Brimaz, King of Oreskos, Tendershoot Dryad or Anointed Procession. Battle Screech would be awesome, but pricier than I expected. You could replace Vitalize with Benefactor's Draught. Heroic Intervention makes a lot of sense here. There are some planeswalkers, such as Huatli, Radiant Champion or any of the Elspeths that work well.

And there we are! Another cheap budget deck for less than $35. Seems like a great deal, right?


I hope that you enjoyed today's deck and the various Emmara, Soul of the Accord synergies we layered here. Anything I missed? Anything you'd recommend? Thanks for reading!


Here are the first 30+Discount Commander Options for your wallet-friendly needs:

  1. We kicked things off with Brion Stoutarm came in at $37.71
  2. Next up was Ghave, Guru of Spores, with a budget of $36.48, is a lot of fun!
  3. Talrand, Sky Summoner - $49.37. I increased the budget for this project due to the nature of the challenge, and it's the only entry in the series where the cost is increased rather than decreased.
  4. Niv-Mizzet, Dracogenius is the next for our list rocking that $36.37 pricetag.
  5. Princess Lucrezia and Riven Turnbull feature in this fun throwback Commander deck that is just $35.68.
  6. Roon of the Hidden Realm demonstrates one of the Commander 2013 dorks in a $35.29 shell.
  7. Vhati il-Dal runs the table for just $35.17. It's also one of the more unique entries in this project.
  8. With all of the latest draconic lovin', Bladewing the Risen comes just a few cents less at $35.13. http://www.gatheringmagic.com/abesargent-042114-budget-commander-8-budget-bladewing/
  9. Lu Xun, Scholar General may not be a powerhouse, but there's enough utility under here to spark a very interesting EDH deck for just $35.07.
  10. [card][card]Bosh, Iron Golem" href="/p/Magic+The+Gathering/[card]Bosh, Iron Golem" href="/p/Magic+The+Gathering/[card][card]Bosh, Iron Golem">[card][card]Bosh, Iron Golem">[card]Bosh, Iron Golem" href="/p/Magic+The+Gathering/[card][card]Bosh, Iron Golem">[card][card]Bosh, Iron Golem[/card] was a fun mono-red artifact centric deck that hits $35.06. That's right, one cent cheaper! It's a fun and different take on artifacts than good ol' Brago will be next.
  11. Brago, King Eternal is featured with a different artifact theme and a $35.04 budget.
  12. Let's finally get below that $35 mark with Lin Sivvi and her rebel horde! $34.98 for the witness.
  13. Wedges are cool. So is Teneb, the Harvester! $34.94 gets us a deck that wins and has fun.
  14. Who likes Surrak Dragonclaw? Who likes making a face-smashing deck for just $34.83? This guy!
  15. Tolsimir Wolfblood? $34.73? Selesnya aggro? We've got it in spades!
  16. Alesha, Who Smiles at Death is ready to bring some serious recursion, beats, and a modest budget to boot at $34.62.
  17. Want to Dragon up your deck? Why not roll with Dragonlord Kolaghan for $34.47.
  18. Who's thumping those mono-green beats with the [card]Yeva, Nature's Herald" href="/p/Magic+The+Gathering/Yeva, Nature's Herald" href="/p/Magic+The+Gathering/[card]Yeva, Nature's Herald">[card]Yeva, Nature's Herald">Yeva, Nature's Herald" href="/p/Magic+The+Gathering/[card]Yeva, Nature's Herald">[card]Yeva, Nature's Herald stylings? Who clocks in at just $34.39? This article!
  19. Want to donate some stuff, play some politics, and draw a ton of cards? Then check out this Zedruu the Greathearted deck that came in at $34.29.
  20. I have a notion that a Five Color deck would be a fun budget challenge. Horde of Notions is a blast of Elemental fun that clocks in at $34.17. Check it out!
  21. Five color doesn't have to end with tribes. There are so many options that this Five Color Cromat deck with a bit of a smash-y board presence is ready to introduce itself to the red zone, and to winning. It also is just $34.20.
  22. Sometimes it's really nice to see how far we can push a popular commander with a cheaper budget. That's where this Nekusar, the Mindrazer deck comes in, clocking in at $34.03
  23. With a budget of just $33.98, this Daxos of Meletis deck is pretty cool without being too expensive. Check it out!
  24. We have a Snake flavored Kaseto, Orochi Archmage deck with a lot of fun, Snakes, and budget goodness at $33.91.
  25. Nahiri, the Lithomancer is calling for an equipment and Solider focused mono-white build that's just $33.85.
  26. Who's Born to be Wild? Mina and Denn are! Check out this Gruul Smash deck with lands and fun for just $33.75.
  27. Gods are cool, especially when they make you berries, fruits, and tasty veggies. [card]Karametra, God of Harvests" href="/p/Magic+The+Gathering/Karametra, God of Harvests" href="/p/Magic+The+Gathering/[card]Karametra, God of Harvests">[card]Karametra, God of Harvests">Karametra, God of Harvests" href="/p/Magic+The+Gathering/[card]Karametra, God of Harvests">[card]Karametra, God of Harvests might fetch you a lot of lands and good times, but she won't set back your wallet. Check out her budget build, clocking in at $33.74
  28. She beats with auras and fun, sailing over her foes. It's Bruna, Light of Alabaster! She's bringing a strong game at a cheap $33.69.
  29. Rosheen Meanderer at $33.63 clocks in with a bunch of X spells and activations with a different take on the classic Elf-Ball deck.
  30. We take a look at a very old school sort of guy, Boris Devilboon, from the original Legends set, and then build a $33.58 deck around our good demonic friends.
  31. It's time for a bit of an Orzhov Control loving, built around Teysa, Envoy of Ghosts and featuring a ton of removal, control, and more, all for the low, low price of $33.56.
  32. Captain Sisay leads a fun, legendary infused deck that has a lot of great cards and synergy, but a light price, checking in at $33.46.
  33. Ertai, the Corrupted sacrifices creatures and enchantments to counter spells. For $33.35, we have a great control-esque deck with some groovy sacrificing love.
  34. With a modest budget of $33.32, Kynaios and Tiro of Meletis have a fun event and morph focused theme, without running a bunch of cards from their Commander 2016 Appearance. Check them out!
  35. Built around the Old-School combo of Prodigal Sorcerer and Fungusaur, this Commander deck features a number of cards that deal damage to your own creatures so they get better. It clocks in at a humble $33.26.
  36. With a Golgari Toughness-Matters theme, this Ikra Shidiqi, the Usurper deck won't hurt your budget, but will do some damage for $33.15.
  37. Grenzo, Dungeon Warden goes all crazy with graveyard and deck restocking shenanigans for a cheap $33.12. We even have an infinite combo in here!
  38. Commander 2017 brings some powerful new options for Commander players everywhere. I put together a multiplayer-friendly control deck around Mathas, Fiend Seeker for just $33.10.
  39. Don't you love the Izzet madness of Arjun, the Shifting Flame? No deck has more card drawing, or card drawing triggers, than this one! It clocks in at $33.04.
  40. It doesn't have to be Halloween for you to enjoy the Monster Mash. Here we have a Grusilda, Monster Mash deck that enjoys mashing your dorks together, but not mashing your budget. It clocks in at $32.98
  41. Don't Shatter your Budget with this build of the Shattergang Brothers, who's sacrificial ways won't sacrifice wallet, and just cost $32.94.
  42. I saw Muldrotha, the Gravetide and I just fell in love with that face. Who wouldn't? Here's a graveyard abuse deck that won't break your bank, just your battlefield. And maybe some friendships. It was $32.89.
  43. Who likes some Saprolings and having Fungal Fun? I do! Slimefoot, the Stowaway leads this cheap, flavorful deck that clocks in at $32.80. Every addition to the deck has to support the flavor of the Fungal concepts!
  44. Who wants to untap and en-creature Arixmethes, Slumbering Isle? Who wants a fun budget build that's just $32.77? ME
  45. !

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