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Valor. Glory. Heroism.

Battlewise Hoplite | Art by William Murai

Anax and Cymede is just one of the many cards representing the heroes on Theros. Heroism is the boldness to be out in front, leading the way and inspiring your side of the battlefield.

Creating a Commander deck around Anax and Cymede asks you for a few things:

  • Spells to target Anax and Cymede
  • An army to be empowered
  • Ways to have enough of both for a multiplayer game

Last week's sampling of your two-card combos called up one way: Sunforger and Mistveil Plains.

It certainly isn't one of the combos that wipes out everyone else at once (something to be carefully considered before choosing to include in a deck), but it does give us a way to repeatedly power up our red and white heroic duo.

I hear Boros Charm is a pretty neat spell for an army, and Shelter (and the new Gods Willing) can protect Anax and Cymede in a direct attack. Beyond spells that work with Sunforger, Seize the Day finally has a hero to call its own, and cards like Recoup and Reiterate will help load up multiple spells at once when needed.

For an army, all the usual tricks for creating one will work, including typical token-making fare such as Captain of the Watch, Increasing Devotion, Decree of Justice, Storm Herd, or even Heliod's newest champion, Elspeth.

Of course, that's just the path I'd start down. This is what some of you had to say.

Lark's Anax and Cymede

Main Deck

99 cards

Arid Mesa
Battlefield Forge
Boros Garrison
Boseiju, Who Shelters All
Cavern of Souls
Clifftop Retreat
Command Tower
Emeria, the Sky Ruin
Flagstones of Trokair
Ghost Quarter
High Market
Kor Haven
Mistveil Plains
10  Plains
Rugged Prairie
Sacred Foundry
Spinerock Knoll
Strip Mine

36 lands

Captain of the Watch
Grand Abolisher
Instigator Gang
Mentor of the Meek
Mesa Enchantress
Mikaeus, the Lunarch
Sun Titan
Weathered Wayfarer

8 creatures

Assemble the Legion
Austere Command
Boros Charm
Caged Sun
Cathars' Crusade
Chaos Warp
Chromatic Lantern
Coalition Relic
Conqueror's Pledge
Crown of Flames
Crucible of Worlds
Decree of Annihilation
Enlightened Tutor
Everflowing Chalice
Flickering Ward
Gilded Lotus
Honor the Fallen
Idyllic Tutor
In the Web of War
Increasing Devotion
Land Tax
Mantle of Leadership
Martial Coup
Mind's Eye
Order // Chaos
Path to Exile
Reforge the Soul
Relic of Progenitus
Rest in Peace
Return to Dust
Scroll Rack
Seething Anger
Sensei's Divining Top
Sol Ring
Spectral Procession
Spirit Mantle
Swiftfoot Boots
Sword of Feast and Famine
Sword of Fire and Ice
Swords to Plowshares
Thran Dynamo
Unquestioned Authority
Wheel of Fate
Wheel of Fortune
Wild Ricochet
Worn Powerstone

53 other spells

Elspeth Tirel
Elspeth, Knight-Errant

2 planeswalkers

Anax and Cymede

My Anax and Cymede deck is a little bit Voltron and a little bit token swarm. I pump up Cymede and her man with bouncing Auras like Flickering Ward, and when I have some tokens on the field, this buffs them as well. With just a handful of weenies on the board, the deck is easily capable of dealing 20+ damage per turn.

My list has an incredibly low average converted mana cost of 3.19 and runs smoothly with only 36 lands and some mana rocks. To make the most of the aggressive curve, my build employs a few mass land-destruction spells. The deck also runs a modest Sunforger package along with Mistveil Plains for recursion. One of my favorite synergies in the deck is Cathars' Crusade with Elspeth Tirel! I recently started experimenting with enchantment-driven card using Mesa Enchantress and I might eventually include Sigil of the Empty Throne if the results are promising.

I've played about a dozen games with the deck since Anax and Cymede was previewed, and I've been pleasantly surprised with the results so far.

Commander is the format I associate most with expensive Dragons and big, splashy spells like Insurrection. Lark went in the opposite direction to make the most of Anax and Cymede's lower converted mana cost. Creating an army in a flash, then supercharging it with the leadership of Anax and Cymede seems like a one-two combinations I can get behind.

Eric's Anax and Cymede

Main Deck

99 cards

Boros Garrison
Clifftop Retreat
Command Tower
Forgotten Cave
Ghost Quarter
Homeward Path
12  Mountain
Naya Panorama
10  Plains
Reflecting Pool
Reliquary Tower
Rugged Prairie
Sacred Foundry
Serra's Sanctum
Slayers' Stronghold
Strip Mine
Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle

38 lands

Academy Rector
Ajani's Chosen
Archon of Justice
Aurelia, the Warleader
Balefire Dragon
Balefire Liege
Brion Stoutarm
Chartooth Cougar
Eternal Dragon
Figure of Destiny
Fountain Watch
Gisela, Blade of Goldnight
Hamletback Goliath
Kor Spiritdancer
Mesa Enchantress
Mikaeus, the Lunarch
Moonveil Dragon
Mother of Runes
Noble Templar
Nomad Mythmaker
Solemn Simulacrum
Soul Warden
Sun Titan
Taurean Mauler
Thran Golem
Vengeful Archon
Wall of Omens

27 creatures

Angelic Destiny
Angelic Renewal
Assemble the Legion
Aura of Silence
Austere Command
Battle Mastery
Boros Charm
Cathars' Crusade
Devouring Light
Enlightened Tutor
Fiery Mantle
Flickering Ward
Idyllic Tutor
Miraculous Recovery
Oblivion Ring
Orim's Thunder
Otherworldly Journey
Path to Exile
Prison Term
Scourge of the Nobilis
Seething Anger
Sigil of the Empty Throne
Soul Snare
Spirit Mantle
Stony Silence
Swords to Plowshares
Unquestioned Authority

33 other spells

Elspeth, Knight-Errant

1 planeswalker

Anax and Cymede

Anax and Cymede want spells that target them and an army behind them that can grow bigger, so I focused on an enchantress/token deck.

This deck utilizes Auras for the esteemed couple along with a couple of spells with buyback that can target Anax and Cymede. Other enchantments help build up an army of tokens and serve to keep opponents at bay. Enjoy!

There will be plenty of enchantments in Theros, so crafting a deck ready to take advantage of them makes sense. Enchantments (like the new Gift of Immortality) that can be used and reused are a potent way to pump with Anax and Cymede. Adding Kor Spiritdancer alongside them takes a page right out of Reid Duke's playbook.

Ray's Anax and Cymede

Main Deck

99 cards

Arid Mesa
Battlefield Forge
Boros Garrison
Clifftop Retreat
16  Plains
Rugged Prairie
Sacred Foundry
Slayers' Stronghold
Sunhome, Fortress of the Legion

33 lands

Accorder Paladin
Auriok Champion
Beloved Chaplain
Boros Swiftblade
Champion of the Parish
Cloud Crusader
Crusader of Odric
Devout Chaplain
Elder Cathar
Elite Inquisitor
Farbog Explorer
Kabira Vindicator
Keldon Warlord
Kessig Malcontents
Koth's Courier
Maraxus of Keld
Mirran Crusader
Mystic Crusader
Righteous Avengers
Riot Ringleader
Skyknight Legionnaire
Tajic, Blade of the Legion
Thraben Doomsayer
Thraben Sentry
Wojek Apothecary
Wojek Halberdiers

26 creatures

Aerial Maneuver
Aurelia's Fury
Bathe in Light
Bladed Bracers
Bonds of Faith
Boros Charm
Butcher's Cleaver
Commander's Authority
Concerted Effort
Crown of Awe
Crown of Fury
Double Cleave
Enlightened Tutor
Gallows at Willow Hill
Gather the Townsfolk
Gleam of Battle
Glorious Anthem
Heavy Mattock
Increasing Devotion
Lightning Helix
Marshal's Anthem
Martial Glory
Past in Flames
Rally the Righteous
Reckless Charge
Rootborn Defenses
Seething Anger
Shared Animosity
Silver-Inlaid Dagger
Squee's Embrace
Thatcher Revolt
Trostani's Judgment
Vigilante Justice
Wake the Reflections
Warleader's Helix
Wojek Siren

39 other spells

Ajani Vengeant

1 planeswalker

Anax and Cymede

I decided to go with a Human tribal deck, because well, when you are looking for heroes you should look to Humans.

Concerted Effort takes advantage of the First Strike and Vigilance on the commander, and it allows somewhat relevant use of Righteous Avengers. Flashback and buyback spells let you target the commander multiple times. Otherwise, it's just a bunch of Humans attacking a lot.

Humans aren't just among the most populous of tribes in Magic, they're also getting some new tools in Theros. Cavalry Pegasus is proof of that. Magic 2014's reprint of Door of Destinies can also beef up a Human army in a hurry.

What you choose to do with Anax and Cymede is up to you, but your destiny is not yet fulfilled. Two other paths remain:

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