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Dolf's Magic the Gathering Deck Garage
Angel Control Deck
January 10, 2011

I want to start playing MTG somewhat competitively in the Standard format. For my first deck I want to make an angel control deck (if that's even possible/viable? haha) but I'm not sure where to start. Can someone give me some help on this? - Shiawase



I saw your post in the forums here on Pojo and since you were looking for help with an Angel deck for standard so I figured I'd help you out and make my first official deck fix at the same time! There wasn't much to go on here other than you want angels and you want it to be standard legal but luckily that is enough of a focus for us to look into some possible builds. As the first reply to your post mentioned if we're talking about Angels in standard the absolute must-have is Baneslayer angel usually heading into a U/W control deck featuring Frost and Sun Titan. However, I feel like the top end of those decks really focus on the titans more than Baneslayer and you want an angel deck so I'm really going to make angel cards the focus here.

After looking through the cards available in standard the most fun angel themed deck I saw would be a U/W build focused around Luminarch Ascension. The goal here would be to control the game until you can get enough quest counters on the Ascension to start pumping out angels or get one of your other large angelic beatsticks into action. Since you didn't have a decklist to start from what I'll do is go through the main things you'll need to make this deck work and provide cards recommendations to fill these rolls. You can decide how many of which cards go in based on playtesting.

So the first thing we need would be win conditions and since this is an angel deck we of course want Baneslayer Angel as she is one of the most amazing creatures in standard right now. The main drawback here being that she's really expensive to get so if you can't afford it good old Serra Angel fits in at the same mana cost or even Shepard of the Lost (purchase in that order).  Keeping with the theme at the top end of your curve is Sunblast Angel, if you're controlling the game properly you should still be alive to cast this, preferably after your opponent just attacked last turn and is tapped out.

Of course the other win condition here and true them of the deck is the Luminarch Ascension which in and of itself is fairly explanatory, but the hard part is making sure you're not taking damage when it's on the table so that it can build up the quest counters. To that end I'd suggest Wall of Omens which provides a nice early blocker that also draws you a card, Condemn for some targeted removal, and Journey to Nowhere for more quasi-removal. You also want some counterspells to control the game and prevent hard to deal with creatures getting on the board to begin with, for these you could go with mana leak and/or cancel. Also worth mentioning here is Spreading Seas, between Valakut and all the man-lands in standard that can hit you out of nowhere you want to be sure you have an answer or they'll effectively shutdown the Ascension.

Should they already have several creatures on the board there's a couple ways to deal with them and build up those crucial quest counters on the Ascension. Day of judgment is a no brainer in a standard control deck as the ability to kill everything on the table (that's not indestructible or able to regenerate) is just crucial to a control strategy, Ratchet Bomb also provides a similar effect and can be customized. You could also go with Safe Passage and Sleep in order to prevent incoming damage and earn yourself some quest counters. Both of those two cards also combo well with Sunblast Angel, especially Sleep as it also taps any vigilance creatures and sets up the angel to devastate your opponent's board.

Since this is control you also want a couple ways to help set up your hand the way you want which you can get both Preordain and Jace, the Mind Sculptor to do. Jace even allows you to mess with your opponents library and put a big threat on the bottom of their library. That pretty much sums this deck up and between these cards you should be able to assemble a fun angel-themed control deck for standard play. The only thing you want to look into is getting some nice dual lands out there of which there are plenty to choose from. Worth special mention is Celestial Colonnade though as it no only fixes your mana but also provides another flying beater later in the game.

I hope this helps you put together a fun angel deck you can take to your local shop and feel free to drop me any feedback.



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