LOTR Cards Will Define Historic Brawl For Years
As promised, so delivered. We’ve spent quite a while looking over the best LOTR cards for Historic Brawl, and now we’re back at it for another round. I’ve spent a lot of time playing with these cards, trying them out in different contexts, and I’ve found the ten off my original list I believe to be best in the entire set for Historic Brawl. If you find yourself building a deck in these cards’ colors (which you almost assuredly will), you should consider adding them. Some are so good you don’t need much deck synergy to justify them. They’re just strong all by themselves.
But before we get into that, I need to go over a few cards that slipped by my original list.
I didn’t see it coming that this card would blow up multiple formats. In hindsight, that should’ve been obvious. Any card that can reliably draw multiple cards is bound to see a lot of play. It didn’t make it on the list before because of how easily it can kill you if your game goes long. You need a deck with lots of life gain because you can’t abuse the Legend rule in singleton formats like you can in Modern or Legacy. That said, it still should’ve probably gone on the original list and could easily be considered for this top ten list.
I should’ve added this one for almost the same reasons as The One Ring. Palantir of Orthanc is a brutal card every turn you have it down. Opponents who’ve played against it a few times will swiftly learn that you should almost always just let your opponent draw a card. I won a game because my opponent went for mill, and the Palantir domed them for around fourteen, instantly putting them into lethal range. If you play any form of a slow Historic Brawl deck, this LOTR card is nothing but a value engine.
Finally, I missed the Witch-king of Angmar. This card is just brutal. It forces opponents into awkward attack strategies that only get worse over time. I consider it on par with Dream Trawler in terms of being a very difficult-to-kill threat that ends games. People don’t account for flying enough in Historic Brawl. I genuinely dislike fighting this card—especially if it’s the Commander—and would not be surprised if it sees play outside of the format, too.
And those are the big ones I missed in my initial list.
So, with that out of the way, let’s look at the top ten.
I’m as surprised as you are with this one. But, in lots and lots of testing, you get a ton of cards. You must put Gandalf in a dedicated Ring trigger build, but that’s not that difficult, and the payoff is worth it.
Another shockingly potent card. Having him as your Commander is especially good because he’ll always arrive on turn two. If you build the deck around getting a good piece of evasive equipment down on turn three, you get to just keep hitting your opponent. If you like short Historic Brawl games, give this hobbit a chance.
I was dead on with my previous assessment. You generate so much mana and can keep filling the board. It’s also good as a recovery card for board wipes.
This card doesn’t appear as explosive as I initially thought. Colossus Hammer is great, but you have to draw it for that combo. Instead, this card’s primary appeal is the slow, compounding advantage. You gain mana advantage by always being able to swap equipment around after something dies.
An absolute engine of a card. Sacrifice payoffs, landfall payoffs, and death trigger payoffs all mesh well with this Commander. Your opponent will constantly try to kill this card and for very good reasons.
Another engine Commander. He just encourages big punchy strategies. Try to get some trample cards down to chain his pump ability for maximum effect. You’ll easily overrun people between that, curated draws, lighting bolts to the face, and random swarm tactics. Like Frodo, he’s a Commander you should play if you like quick games.
This card isn’t as good in singleton formats. I recently lost to a Historic build that ran four and The One Ring. It wasn’t fun. I’ve started to think of this card in Historic Brawl or any singleton deck like a smaller Niv-Mizzet, Parun. Orcish Bowmasters is a card that, if you have the right deck construction, instantly swings the chances of winning in your favor.
Consistency in singleton formats is just excellent, and these Wraiths allow that. They’re good by themselves or in hordes, and they keep you flush with Ring triggers. You can also tutor them up with Faceless Agent in a lot of decks because “Wraith” will conveniently be the most common creature type.
I feel like this one is self-evident. But, to have something to talk about, I’ll say that the most fun cards to pair him with are things like Niv-Mizzet, Parun, Sheoldred, the Apocalypse, Teferi’s Tutelage, and Ominous Seas. As long as you use lots of Ring trigger cards, you can easily draw eight or twelve cards in the same turn. Oh, and as a quick tip, if you’re running out of life a lot when you play him, try out Dreadhorde Invasion. Getting the Army up to six power and gaining lots of life is easy.
I said it before; I’ll say it again: one card value engine. Even if you don’t have a creature to give the Ring, you’ll still get to the Ring’s higher levels quickly. If you can reliably gain life, this is an extra card every turn. If you’re playing a Historic Brawl deck that includes black cards and has a decent number of creatures, run this card.
And there we have it! The top ten best LOTR cards for Historic Brawl! All of them fit to win game after game.
But if you still want more ideas for what decks to play, don’t worry. We’ve got two upcoming deck techs utilizing some of the LOTR cards. One is an absolute blast to play, and the other is deeply powerful—able to win sometimes on turn four.
Those articles will be going up soon. See you then.
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