Playing the Deck
With this deck, you'll command an organized assault, using military prowess and powerful enchantments to win the day. The key is controlling the momentum of the game.
Get an aggressive start by casting a creature on your first or second turn, and use the abilities of creatures like Imposing Sovereign and Lyev Skyknight to tap or detain potential blockers. Avoid trading with your opponent's early blockers; you can draw into Pacifism, Detention Sphere, or Lavinia of the Tenth to get past them later on. Lyev Skyknight is best saved for when its detain ability can clear the way for your attackers, but don't hesitate to play it on an empty board if it's your only creature. Once your opponent's defenses come online, your creatures may need help getting through. Ordeal of Thassa and Ordeal of Heliod help your attackers get bigger and keep pace with your opponent's creatures. Dauntless Onslaught lets you attack with confidence knowing that you can boost the size of your creatures to keep them safe from damage. If you run into an impervious ground defense, putting an Aura on a flying creature is a great way to finish the game.
Focus on getting the most out of your Auras. An unanswered enchanted creature can singlehandedly steal the game. One key card in this deck is Hopeful Eidolon. The extra life you gain from the lifelink ability allows you to trade blows with your opponent without falling behind. You'll almost always cast Hopeful Eidolon as an Aura for its bestow cost. The exception is when you can cast it as a creature on turn one and enchant it with Ordeal of Heliod or Ordeal of Thassa on turn two!
The absolute best recipient in this deck for any Aura is Ascended Lawmage, which already has 3 power, flying, and hexproof. If it Playing the Deck has other bonuses on top of that, your opponent will be forced into a damage race that you're likely to win. The other great Aura targets in the deck are Battlewise Hoplite and Fabled Hero. Their heroic abilities let them complete Ordeals in just two attacks, and Fabled Hero's double strike keyword effectively gives it twice the bonus from Auras. Once you've enhanced a heroic attacker, you can use Gods Willing to protect it from a removal spell or win a key combat—and get a bonus +1/+1 counter besides. Just be sure you don't give your creature protection from the color of an Aura attached to it, or the Aura will fall off.
Your sideboard gives you ways to counter your opponent's strategies or take advantage of their weaknesses. Negate is perfect against decks that try to control the game with creature removal spells and planeswalkers. Gift of Orzhova and Triton Tactics are effective against aggressive decks, especially those that use direct-damage spells as their form of creature removal. Solemn Offering provides insurance against enchantments and artifacts. Glare of Heresy and Gainsay are great against any opponent who is playing white or blue, respectively. And while Arrest is too defensive to bring in against an average creature deck, it's worth it if your opponent's creatures have nasty activated abilities that you need to stop.
When you're ready to start putting your own spin on this deck, there are a couple directions you can go. If you enjoy going wide with lots of efficient creatures, Heliod, God of the Sun and his legendary weapon Spear of Heliod are great cards to support them. If you prefer to keep your opponent on the back foot and then follow up with a powerful, midgame threat, the planeswalker Elspeth, Sun's Champion and the Magic 2014 core set's Archangel of Thune are just what you're looking for.
Each Magic™ deck may have a sideboard—a group of extra cards that are particularly good against certain opponents. For example, a card that says "Destroy all artifacts" is great against someone playing a deck that relies on lots of artifacts, but useless against opponents who aren't playing with artifacts. After you play a game against an opponent, you may make changes to your deck using cards from your sideboard. You must reset your deck to its original configuration before playing someone new. In a Constructed game, your sideboard consists of up to 15 cards. Your combined deck and sideboard can't have more than four copies of any card other than basic land cards. Your deck must have at least 60 cards. In a Limited game, all the cards you opened that aren't in your main deck are in your sideboard. Your deck must have at least 40 cards.
Theros Event Deck