Maestros Massacre is one of five new preconstructed Commander decks released alongside Streets of New Capenna. This blue, black, and red deck plays around a new ability called casualty that allows you to sacrifice creatures of a certain power to make a copy of the spell you cast.
This deck is playable directly out of the box. But there are key cards that seriously improve the deck. This guide will break down the best upgrades for Maestros Massacre.
Anhelo, the Painter
The face-commander of the deck, Anhelo, the Painter, gives casualty 2 to the first instant or sorcery spell you cast each turn. This effect is not restricted to your turn, allowing you to copy instant spells on your opponents’ turns too.
This deck plays lots of sacrifice synergies, creates consistent creatures to sacrifice for casualty, and copies some awesome instant and sorcery spells.
Best Sacrifice Fodder to Add to Maestros Massacre
To make the most out of Anhelo and casualty, you never want to run out of creatures to sacrifice.
Bloodghast is the perfect creature to play with Anhelo and sacrifice for casualty costs. As each land you play brings it back from the graveyard, lands can effectively fuel Anhalo’s ability.
Jadar is a must-have upgrade to Maestros Massacre. He makes a 2/2 Zombie in each of your end steps if you don’t already have one. This is perfect for fueling Anhelo each turn.
Other token-generating options to add to the deck include Cures of Disturburbance and Ghoulish Procession. Although not as consistent as Jadar, these cards have the potential to provide even more Zombie tokens.
Other Sacrifice Payoffs Besides Anhelo
Because Anhelo plays such an extensive package of sacrifice cards, you can lean into this strategy further with the following cards:
Take Advantage of Copied Spells
Magecraft is the perfect ability to pair with casualty. With Anhelo, each instance of magecraft triggers twice, once for the originally cast instant or sorcery spell and once when Anhelo makes a copy.
Deekah will help to ensure you always have enough creatures to fuel Anhelo’s casualty ability. If you cast a two-mana instant or sorcery and use Anhelo to copy the spell, Deekah will replace the creature you sacrificed plus create an additional 2/2 creature.
The Pest tokens that Sedgemoor Witch creates aren’t big enough to sacrifice to Anhelo’s ability. But Sedgemoor Witch still fits well in this deck. There are other sacrifice-related cards on top of Anhelo that can use the Pests. And over the course of a game, she can accumulate a ton of value.
Like Deekah and Sedgemoor Witch, Storm Kiln Artist and Archmage Emeritus will trigger twice whenever you play a spell with casualty, making twice the amount of mana and drawing twice the number of cards they normally do.
Big Instant and Sorceries to Copy
I’ve talked about several ways to build around and fuel Anhelo’s ability, but what’s it all for? What kind of instants and sorceries do we want to double up on?
Delve works wonders in this deck. Your graveyard will often be stocked in this deck to reduce the cost of delve spells. Doubling up on Treasure Cruise to draw six cards, or copying Temporal Trespass to take two extra turns, will buy you a massive lead in any Commander game.
Extra Turns x2
Using Anhelo to double up on your extra turn spells is kind of nasty. In each of your extra turns, Anhelo resets, letting you double up on more cards. This becomes particularly powerful if you chain multiple extra turn spells together.
Upgrade Your Maestros Massacre Mana Base
Preconstructed Commander decks are notorious for having lackluster mana bases. Fetch lands like Scalding Tarn and shock lands like Blood Crypt are useful for any Commander deck. But there are a bunch of dual-colored lands that help ensure you have access to all the colored mana you need.
Here are a few more lands to add to Maestros Massacre:
Best Upgrades From New Capenna
Casualty is a brand new mechanic from Streets of New Capenna, so there is a lot of support for Anhelo within the main set. Here are a few cards from the main set that are worthwhile inclusions in the Maestros Commander deck.
As if the value Anhelo provides via copying your spells weren’t enough, Maestros Ascendancy gives you additional mileage out of all your instant and sorceries. And when you use Ascendancy to cast a spell from your graveyard, you can sacrifice an additional creature to copy that spell with Anhelo.
Nearly every Commander deck with a color identity containing blue and black should consider playing Tainted Indulgence. It is simply that good of a card. Maestros Massacre should be particularly good at filling its graveyard to remove Tainted Indulgence’s conditional downside, turning it into a two-mana draw two.
Errant, Street Artist
As Anhelo copies our instants and sorceries, Errant, Street Artist, can make a third copy of your those spells for even more value.
More Casualty Spells
Because this entire deck is built around leveraging the new casualty mechanic, other casualty spells, in addition to Anhelo, will naturally fit into this deck.