Olivia, Opulent Outlaw Commander Deck Tech

Travis Stanley • March 28, 2024

Olivia, Opulent Outlaw

The Outlaws of Thunder Junction Commander set is bringing back my favourite Innistradian Vampire, Olivia Voldaren, with Olivia, Opulent Outlaw. It's been a while since we've seen Olivia and her crimson locks, and it seems her opulent ways have followed her from Innistrad, and she's upgraded from two colors to three, trading in a Vampire kindred strategy for a more roguish one, synergizing with all sorts of outlaws.

Speaking of outlaws, that's the new group name for a specific assortment of creature types, like we saw back in Zendikar Rising with party. Outlaw now refers to the creature types Assassin, Mercenary, Pirate, Rogue, and Warlock. There are plenty of creatures with those types in Olivia's color identity, so there's no shortage of creatures to throw into this deck.

Breaking down the card itself, at a minimum Olivia, Opulent Outlaw is a 3/3 flying lifelinker for four mana, which isn't bad. She also has a triggered ability that whenever any outlaw you control deals combat damage to a player, you create a Treasure. Take notice that Rogue is in that list of outlaw creature types. Rogues are famous for being able to slip past enemy blockers and reliably get triggers for direct damage, which is great for Olivia.

Now this ability does have that pesky wording of "Whenever one or more outlaws" (emphasis added) meaning that you'll only get one Treasure per player you hit, but that still isn't terrible, as Mardu has many other methods of creating Treasure.

Her second ability is pay three and sacrifice two Treasures to put two +1/+1 counters on each creature you control. It can be mighty scary when you have a bevy of Treasures, really putting the "Oh no" in the "Oh no, you have too many Treasures".

That's the card as a whole, now let's look at how to build her.

Starting with the most important and easiest thing to do in these colors: Treasure production. If your budget allows for it, staples like Smothering Tithe, Black Market Connections, and The Reaver Cleaver are good, consistent Treasure-producers. Not all of us have access to those, though, so anything like Professional Face-Breaker, Grim Hireling, or Master of Ceremonies may not be as consistent, but two of them stick with the theme of the deck, and the other one gains value every turn.

Instant and sorcery spells, like Big Score, Deadly Dispute, and Strike It Rich, are plentiful nowadays, so any spots needing filling can have one of those spells in it. To make the most out of those damage triggers, cards that give your team double strike are your best friends, like Berserkers' Onslaught, Akroma's Will, or Rage Reflection.

Outlaws Run This Town

There are plenty of Rogues, Warlocks, and Pirates that can pull double duty in this deck. Lotho, Corrupt Shirriff can create constant Treasures for you whenever anyone casts their second spell, while Swashbuckler Extraordinaire can turn your Treasures into more Treasures if you can reliably get in damage by giving creatures double strike.

Forge, Neverwinter Charlatan fits right into this strategy by supplying you with Treasures whenever anyone sacrifices a creature and growing bigger for each Treasure you have. A bit of a spicy pick, but Burakos, Party Leader can generate at least two Treasures per attack as long as you control another Rogue, which will be pretty easy in this deck, and he counts as a Rogue himself.

Prosper, Tome-Bound and Misfortune Teller are a couple of Warlocks that have a form of evasion while also having some relevant abilities. We all know what Prosper can do and how popular he is, but little Miss.Fortune can be full of value herself, picking apart graveyards and giving you either more Rogues or Treasure, both things this deck would love. Another Warlock full of value and flexibility, Fain, the Broker, has abilities that all play very nicely in this deck, repurposing your counters, creatures, and most of all, Treasures.

Pirates are always looking for more Treasure. There's a bevy of eligible Pirates that fit right into this decks strategy, like Captain Lannery Storm, Breeches, Eager Pillager, and everyone's favourite Monkey, Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer. Those are all aggressive Treasure-producers, while Gemcutter Buccaneer, Ruthless Knave, and all-star Pitiless Plunderer are on the slower side but still pull their weight.

Dockside Extortionist could play almost a Craterhoof Behemoth-lite role in a deck like this. For two mana it would come down, then make a bounty of Treasure which would allow you to sacrifice a bunch of it, anthem your team, and swing on in. Throwing in recursion, like Phyrexian Reclamation, or a flicker effect, like Teleportation Circle, will let you reuse enter-the-battlefield effects to produce even more Treasure, from cards like Charming Scoundrel to Gemcutter Buccaneer to the aforementioned Misfortune Teller!

As of the writing of this article, there are a few Assassins that this deck would really want to play, one of them being Mari, the Killing Quill. Not only does she care about three out of the five outlaw types, she also has an ability that produces Treasure and draws cards. A few other Assassins that could make their way into the deck would be Massacre Girl, Queen Marchesa, and Virtus the Veiled, as they either have value built right in, or when they hit they have a great ability. The Universes Beyond Assassin's Creed set is right around the corner, and I'm sure a few of them could make it into this deck, like Altaïr Ibn-La'Ahad.

There are even fewer Mercenaries than Assassins, but one that stands out immediately is Kellogg, Dangerous Mind. I talked about Kellogg in my Fallout set review; he's very strong and would make a difference in this deck. As an aside, a card I didn't realise was a Mercenary until writing this article is Doomed Necromancer; even though it's a little slow, being able to get back a creature in a pinch at instant speed is never a bad thing to have.

We Are All Outlaws in Our Own Way

All the cards I have mentioned up to this point are very much putting the focus on Olivia's first ability regarding outlaws, but what if I told you there was a way to still have outlaws without having to put those specific creature types in your deck?

If you haven't seen it before, may I introduce you to Maskwood Nexus! This puppy can fit so many creature types in it, it's not even funny. You can even use it to grab any creature out of your deck with the Mercenary tutor effects from these cards. You can also play the lesser enchantment version, Conspiracy, which only lets you pick one creature type, but still has the same effect.

There will be some folks who will want to play Vampire kindred with Olivia, as that's what she's best known for, and good news for those folks, you totally still can! There are a couple of Vampires that are also outlaws, so they'll trigger her first ability, and as I said before these colors create Treasure really easily, so being able to anthem your team will be easier than you think. Plus, playing Mardu Vampires with this Olivia will draw far less ire and anger from the table as opposed to Edgar Markov. Saying that, Olivia, Opulent Outlaw could totally go in an Edgar Markov deck.

With all of the kindred stuff out of the now, we can look at some alternative strategies for Olivia, Opulent Outlaw.

Mardu artifact aristocrats is a direction you can take Olivia in. By using Olivia as a commander, it gives this archetype an end game of sorts by having a great mana sink ability to put the game away. Creating an army of artifact tokens is already what Mardu artifacts is built for, but add Olivia in the mix and she can pump them up and strike fear into the hearts of opponents everywhere.

Whenever you get rid of those Treasures, you can drain the table with cards like Marionette Master and Disciple of the Vault, and of course artifacts leaving the battlefield must mean they had to have entered, and cards like Reckless Fireweaver and Ingenious Artillerist would love to be in on the action.


We've talked at length about the various pieces for Olivia, Opulent Outlaw, but being the absolute queen that she is, there are even more cards that she could add to her treasure trove of tricks. For Olivia's activated ability Zirda, the Dawnwaker will prove to be an asset to make her ability cheaper; in fact, fill the deck with activated abilities, and Zirda becomes her companion.

To double up on your Treasure creation, we have Xorn, and to double up on just tokens in general, we have all-stars Anointed Procession, Ojer Taq, Deepest Foundation, and Mondrak, Glory Dominus. Speaking of doubling things, Roaming Throne can find a home here; name Assassin and you double up Olivia's and all of your other Assassin triggers. A relatively new card, Crime Novelist, synergizes in most builds with Olivia, as it will just grow the more Treasure you sacrifice and provide you with mana to continue activating the ability.

This new Olivia gives us something outside of Vampires and breathes fresh air into a character we have seen many times before. As a precon face commander, I'm super excited to see what the deck contains and how Wizards designed it.

Whether you go full outlaw and have batches of bad buccaneers, menacing mercenaries, wicked warlocks, assassins with attitude, or roguish Rogues, or in a little more Treasure-filled direction, Olivia will be right in on the action. Olivia, Opulent Outlaw has all the tools to be a fun, solid commander.

Now that all the cards are on the table, it's your call, outlaw.


Olivia's Outlaws

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Commander (1)
Lands (37)
Sorceries (7)
Enchantments (6)
Creatures (31)
Artifacts (7)
Instants (11)

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