The War Report: Upgrading Feline Ferocity

I managed to make a little bit more on my last paycheck than normal, so I was able to squeeze out a little bit extra fun money and picked up some cards the other day on a whim. I was out and about already, and was actually thinking of picking up a few Unstable packs for funsies, but I ended up seeing a lone Commander 2017 deck lying there, lonely and forgotten. It deserved a new home, so I grabbed it. Behold, our fearless new leader:

Being a C17 product, the featured commander of the deck has the Eminence ability, meaning he packs some utility despite residing in the command zone. It’s a great tool for Edgar, and I’ve already talked about how I’ve revamped that deck back when these released in August. Since then I made or brewed multiple decks with the Arcane Wizardry deck. This was the last of the precons that I wanted, as the Dragons have been overdone in my playgroup. Since the deck sort of revolves around equipment the natural choice is to build this into a voltron deck, but since I already have Sram doing a great job at that style, I didn’t want to follow the trend. As such, I’m sticking with a go-wide win strategy that tends to work well with tribal builds, but I’m going to stick with the equipment-matters subtheme. Some of the cards here work so well with equipment without necessitating a single swinging minion. It did lack a clear cut win condition though, which I think is something all of the precons this year had suffered from. Still, the tools are here and we’re going to use them. I’ll show you how I made some upgrades on a budget, but kept the heart of the deck alive. This could of course go much further by modifying the land base and replacing some cards with strictly-better versions, but for budget and time’s sake, I’ll show you a quick way to make this deck your own without spending a lot of dough. Here’s the original deck list: (removed cards crossed out)

Feline Ferocity:

1 Nazahn, Revered Bladesmith
1 Mirri, Weatherlight Duelist
1 Alms Collector
1 Balan, Wandering Knight
1 Stalking Leonin
1 Hungry Lynx
1 Qasali Slingers
1 Jazal Goldmane
1 Jareth, Leonine Titan
1 Kemba, Kha Regent
1 Leonin Arbiter
1 Leonin Shikari
1 Raksha Golden Cub
1 Seht’s Tiger
1 Spirit of the Hearth
1 Jedit Ojanen of Efrava
1 Fleecemane Lion
1 Phantom Nishoba
1 Leonin Relic-Warder
1 Oreskos Explorer
1 Sunspear Shikari
1 Taj-Nar Swordsmith
1 Temur Sabertooth
1 Qasali Pridemage
1 Traverse the Outlands
1 Divine Reckoning
1 Rout
1 Hunter’s Prowess
1 Soul’s Majesty
1 Cultivate
1 Harmonize
1 Nissa’s Pilgrimage
1 Kindred Summons
1 White Sun’s Zenith
1 Condemn
1 Wing Shards
1 Crushing Vines
1 Relic Crush
1 Bloodforged Battle-Axe
1 Hammer of Nazahn
1 Argentum Armor
1 Grappling Hook
1 Quietus Spike
1 Staff of Nin
1 Sword of the Animist
1 Sword of Vengeance
1 Heirloom Blade
1 Herald’s Horn
1 Behemoth Sledge
1 Dreamstone Hedron
1 Hedron Archive
1 Hero’s Blade
1 Lightning Greaves
1 Loxodon Warhammer
1 Skullclamp
1 Sol Ring
1 Swiftfoot Boots
1 Mirari’s Wake
1 Abundance
1 Zendikar Resurgent
1 Curse of Vitality
1 Curse of Bounty
1 Mosswort Bridge
1 Stirring Wildwood
7 Plains
6 Forest
1 Path of Ancestry
1 Blighted Woodland
1 Blossoming Sands
1 Command Tower
1 Elfhame Palace
1 Evolving Wilds
1 Grasslands
1 Graypelt Refuge
1 Krosan Verge
1 Myriad Landscape
1 Opal Palace
1 Rogue’s Passage
1 Saltcrusted Steppe
1 Secluded Steppe
1 Selesnya Guildgate
1 Selesnya Sanctuary
1 Temple of the False God
1 Terramorphic Expanse
1 Tranquil Expanse
1 Tranquil Thicket
1 Vivid Meadow
1 Vivid Grove

As you can see I didn’t remove too much. With the land base present I only removed the strictest tap lands because I feel like they slow things down and there are several ramp spells that rely on pulling basic land cards so I replaced them with basics. Otherwise, I added some nice cat cards that weren’t present in the precon, and adjusted some spells along with adding some win conditions. Let’s check out the additional cards:

Brimaz is the only card that is really an expense, at about $12-14. Everything else is pocket change, and you should be able to pick all of them up for under $30. Here’s my reasoning for the additions: The few cats that I added stay on theme, being able to utilize Arahbo’s eminence ability but also do cool things like summon more cats or beef up cats, or even make your cat spells uncounterable! I added in a tribal themed equipment that I’m surprised didn’t make the precon, and added some more card draw with Rishkar’s Expertise and give my equipments flash with Sigarda’s Aid. As for the win cons:

You can obviously go wide if you get the right combination of cats and equipments on the field. Several of the creatures benefit from being equipped, and you should be getting in some chip damage from early on in the game. One goal will be to have several creatures out that can attack, and play Beastmaster Ascension during your first main phase, then attack with seven creatures simultaneously to get the +5/+5 affect which should be eliminating an opponent from play. You can also use Overwhelming Stampede before combat for a similar effect. I may later add in Triumph of the Hordes for redundancy as the infect is usually enough to defeat even the healthiest of opponents. You also have a voltron subtheme here, and tools like Rogue’s passage can sometimes be enough to win via commander damage, but I think if you want to go that route you should probably run Nazahn, Revered Bladesmith or Mirri, Weatherlight Duelist as they benefit more from voltron strategies. Conversely, you can actually play Arahbo and then kit him out to swing for lethal commander damage too, but my playgroup rarely wins that way.

I think these small improvements will be better than the precon itself but I already see where I could easily spend a few more dollars on this to make it more efficient and honed in. For now, we’ll call it a budget upgrade and move on. You can see my full deck list here.

Hope this gave you some ideas at least. Happy Gaming!