7, Feb, 22

Best Starter Commanders - Lyra Dawnbringer

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Overcome your foes with wings, life, and spears.
Article at a Glance

Have you ever felt the overwhelming need to overcome and defeat your Commander playgroup with a horde of Angels?

We assume it’s called a horde. Flock would be the other option that comes to mind and that makes it sound like they’ll be trying to snatch food from you instead of smiting you. Anyway, let’s talk about Angel tribal.

Meet your commander

Lyra Dawnbringer is a five-mana mono-white 5/5 with flying, first strike, and lifelink. They also grant all other Angels you control +1/+1 and lifelink. Now, that’s all a lot of stuff, but the key thing here is that they can hold their own in a fight, and that they’re going to be giving you a lot of life, especially in an Angel tribal deck.

The key thing here is to make sure you’re going as all-in on the tribal idea as possible, but also that you look after Lyra. While they’re not essential to keeping your deck running, they do a good enough job of boosting your side of the field that looking after them should be high up on how you build your deck.

So, let’s dive into the best creatures for Lyra, along with the best support cards for this strategy.

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Best creatures for Lyra

Let’s talk about protecting Lyra first. Sephara, Sky’s Blade is a seven-mana 7/7 with flying and lifelink that you can actually pay one mana for if you tap four untapped flying creatures you control to cast. Along with that, they grant your other flying creatures indestructible, which is a very strong starting point for any protection suite. Breathkeeper Seraph is another good choice, as it allows you to bring creatures back from the graveyard as long as it’s soulbond with them.

In terms of other utility creatures, one of the best is Herald of War. This five-mana 3/3 gets a +1/+1 counter on it whenever it attacks. What’s even better though, is that both your Angel spells and your Human spells cost one less to cast for each +1/+1 counter on it. With that in mind, Archangel of Thune is also a banger, as it’ll give all of your creatures +1/+1 counters when you gain life.

As life is an easy thing to come by in this deck, we also really like Resplendent Angel and Valkyrie Harbinger, both of which are happy to create more Angels whenever you gain enough life in a turn. Remember, each of those tokens then also gets +1/+1 and lifelink, so this snowballs a lot. Finally, we’ve got Righteous Valkyrie, a three-mana 2/4 that allows you to gain life whenever an Angel or Cleric enters the battlefield under your control, and it grants your creatures +2/+2 as long as you’ve got enough life.

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Best support cards for Lyra

Angelic Accord does a good job of making more Angels, which is ideal. The Book of Exalted Deeds also does the same, but doubles as a mini Platinum Angel in a pinch too, which can be a big deal if you’re actually looking as though you may lose.

The other main issue that Angels have is that they can be rather costly on the mana front. As a result, a lot of the best support cards for Lyra help to bring those costs down. Oketra’s Monument is a three-mana artifact that makes your white spells cost one less to cast, and brings creature tokens with them when you do so. Herald’s Horn is also three mana, and it allows you to lower the cost of your angels specifically, and occasionally draw an extra card too.

Then you’ve got Radiant Destiny, which will make your creatures bigger and give them vigilance too. We also really like Boon Reflection, which doubles the amount of life you gain, which is going to keep you safe from nearly every threat you might face in Commander. There are plenty of other cards you can add to this deck, but all of these should give you a strong skeleton to work with.

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