Conditions Allow - Myojin of Roaring Blades in EDH

Ben Doolittle • March 29, 2022

(Myojin of Roaring Blades | Art by Jason A. Engle)

Infinite Blades

Hello, and welcome back to Conditions Allow, the article series where I take a legendary creature with a drawback and build a deck to turn it into a strength. I'm still reveling in Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty. Amongst the Isshin, Two Heavens as Ones and Hinata, Dawn-Crowneds of the set are five new Myojin, one for each color. Each enters the battlefield with an indestructible counter if you cast them from your hand. Then, you can remove that counter for a powerful effect later on. For today, I'm going to focus on the Myojin of Roaring Blades, which can remove its counter to deal seven damage to three different targets.

When casting it from your hand, Myojin of Roaring Blades is a powerful creature. A 7/4 with indestructible that can destroy just about any three creatures or planeswalkers is powerful enough, but Myojin can also target your opponents, and if you can get multiple indestructible counters on it, you can easily end the game with your Myojin's effect. Therein lies the problem, however: Proliferating counters isn't difficult, but getting that initial indestructible counter is tricky with Myojin of Roaring Blades in the command zone.

Let's Bounce

A common solution to this problem, based on EDHREC data, is to bounce Myojin of Roaring Blades back to your hand. I'm not a huge fan of this strategy in general. Casting the same creature over and over doesn't actually progress your board state, especially when that creature costs eight mana. That goes double when Ancestral Statue and Guardians of Koilos account for nearly half of your bounce effects.

Even with your most efficient bounce engines, I'm not sold on this approach. Nearly every EDH deck includes at least some creatures with useful effects that trigger when they enter the battlefield, or is built around casting a certain kind of permanent. Without falling back on Rule of Law or otherwise restricting what spells your opponents can cast, Umbilicus is going to provide more benefit to your opponents than it does to you. You can offset that slightly by including Ichor Wellspring, Cursed Mirror, and other cards that reward you for casting and re-casting them.

Those artifacts, however, are also staples of Daretti, Scrap Savant and Krark-Clan Ironworks decks. Sacrificing and "reanimating" Skyscanner and Scrap Trawler repeatedly generates a lot of value, and is a core component of several infinite combos. I don't want to move in that direction, though, because once you start comboing there's no reason to cast your commander, but I am going to use it as inspiration. Rather than sacrificing artifacts with KCI, I'm going to use Throne of Geth.

The Counter Throne

Proliferating is very powerful with Myojin of Roaring Blades. Its ability isn't limited to once a turn, and once it has any counters it becomes very difficult to remove. Even though you can only use Throne of Geth's effect once per turn, you can generate three or four counters in a single turn. That's more than enough to threaten to kill each opponent on the spot. Your most explosive turns will come thanks to Core Prowler: sacrifice it to Throne of Geth to Proliferate twice. Then sacrifice Myr Retriever or Junk Diver to get it back and repeat the process. More often than not, though, you'll be sacrificing Mycosynth Wellspring or Chromatic Star to draw cards and slowly build up counters on Myojin of Roaring Blades.

Throne of Geth isn't your only tool for Proliferation, either. Contagion Clasp and Contagion Engine both generate their own counters, which is great because you want to cast them before your commander. They also work whether you have anything to sacrifice or not, making them solid top decks for longer, grindy games. And don't underestimate the impact that Contagion Engine can have on its own. Putting a -1/-1 counter on each creature a player controls can wipe out a swarm of tokens. Once you Proliferate twice, you've given someone's whole field -3/-3 permanently. That's enough to buy you breathing room and dramatically change everyone's plans in combat.

What're We Counting

With all this talk of Proliferation, its finally time to talk about what we're Proliferating. More importantly, where is Myojin of Roaring Blades getting its indestructible counter if I'm not planning on casting it from hand? Simple: Tyrite Sanctum.

Tyrite Sanctum is a neat land from Kaldheim that you may have overlooked. It's also the only way in mono-red to generate indestructible counters. First, though, you'll have to use its other ability to elevate Myojin of Roaring Blades to godhood. After that, though, you can use Tyrite Sanctum to put as many indestructible counters on your commander as you want. As long as you can return it from the graveyard, anyway. But that's where Crucible of Worlds comes in, forming the core strategy for the deck.

With Crucible of Worlds and Tyrite Sanctum, you can use your land drop and eight mana to put two counters on Myojin of Roaring Blades. Compared to bouncing Myojin with Umbilicus and recasting it, that's twice the counters for the same amount of mana. But Crucible of Worlds also lets you replay utility lands, like Roadside Reliquary, Ghost Quarter, and Command Beacon. Recurring Command Beacon is also a powerful way to reset your commander's indestructible counter.

To help find Crucible of Worlds and Tyrite Sanctum as often as possible, I'm including Inventors' Fair and Expedition Map. The Fair can easily find Crucible of Worlds, which then lets you replay Inventors' Fair. As long as you've got the mana, you can then easily find any artifact in your deck. From there, Expedition Map finds Tyrite Sanctum, and you're off to the races. If that all sounds too complicated, you can also use Inventors' Fair to find Cursed Mirror.

Clones are usually a blue effect, but red has more than a few ways to make token copies of creatures. Cursed Mirror will become a temporary clone of any creature you control when it enters the battlefield. Importantly, if you cast it from your hand, you can have Cursed Mirror enter the battlefield as a copy of Myojin of Roaring Blades with an indestructible counter. Then you'll easily have enough mana to activate Contagion Engine right away, activate Throne of Geth and have four indestructible counters to deal twenty-eight damage to each opponent. Five counters if you happen to sacrifice Core Prowler. With the incidental damage that builds up in your average EDH game, that should be more than enough to win.

Backup Plans

This deck is packed with card draw to make sure all that comes together as often as possible, but just in case you can't find that first indestructible counter for Myojin of Roaring Blades, I'm including a few planeswalkers for all this Proliferation. First, Ugin, the Ineffable provides a steep discount for all your colorless spells. It's easy to accidentally go infinite when Myr Retriever and Ichor Wellspring are both free spells. Daretti, Scrap Savant is a card draw engine that can also threaten to bring back Wurmcoil Engine after you sacrifice it to Proliferate with Throne of Geth. Finally, Chandra, Torch of Defiance is the real backup win condition. Racing to her ultimate puts a fast clock on your opponents as you recycle small artifacts and cast cheap cantrips, each one paired with a complimentary Lava Axe.

Holding all this together is some of the best draw and interaction red has to offer, plus a few creature to play interference while you assemble all your pieces.

Buy this decklist from Card Kingdom
Buy this decklist from TCGplayer

The Myojins are some of the coolest creatures on Kamigawa, and I think this deck lives up to that. No one is going to anticipate exactly what this deck does when you reveal your commander, and they definitely won't expect how explosive it can be. If you're looking for a lower-power deck that still lets you play convoluted turns with Krark-Clan Ironworks, Scrap Trawler, and Chromatic Star, then this is the deck for you.

Ben was introduced to Magic during Seventh Edition and has played on and off ever since. A Simic mage at heart, he loves being given a problem to solve. When not shuffling cards, Ben can be found lost in a book or skiing in the mountains of Vermont.