Commander Deck Tech: Urza, Chief Artificer
This week we are going to take a look at the preconstructed Commander Urza, Chief Artificer. Both of The Brothers War Commander decks are really good straight out the box, and have a good value for the cost. I highly recommend picking up either if you haven't, and are in need of a new Commander deck. My last article with Urza, Lord Protector is similar but not the same. We do still have the Urza, Lord Protector / The Mightstone and Weakstone combo, but we also have a third color. By adding black it opens the doors for a few more Creatures, quite a bit more removal, and some more abilities on Creatures we can play.
Urza, Chief Artificer is 6 converted mana at 3WUB and is a 4/5 Creature. He has affinity for Artifact Creatures so can potentially be played cheaper, and later in the game this will help with additional Commander tax mana if he dies multiple times. He gives all your Artifact Creatures Menace, and also Creatures a 0/0 construct Creature during your end step. The construct is the same as the one created by Urza's Saga which is also within the deck. Urza's Saga has plenty of decent targets in: Mana Crypt, Sol Ring, Sensei's Divining Top, Esper Sentinel, Expedition Map, and Skullclamp.
We are only running 3 mana rocks in the Sol Ring, Mana Crypt, and an Arcane Signet. We are also running a few cards that make our Artifacts or Artifact Creatures cheaper in: Urza, Lord Protector, Foundry Inspector, Chief of the Foundry, and Forsaken Monument.
For spot removal we have plenty of options in: Dispatch, Swords to Plowshares, Despark, Fracture, Anguished Unmaking, Void Rend, and Vindicate. The biggest difference between the Blue/White Lord Protector and this build is that we aren't running any counterspells, and are running far more spot removal and wrath effects. For our wrath effects we are running: Cyclonic Rift, Scourglass, Their Name is Death, and Organic Extinction. Most of which are not full wrath effects, but either buy us time, or destroy everything other than our own Artifacts.
We are running two very powerful planeswalker's in addition to Urza, Lord Protector flip which are Karn Liberated, and Tezzeret, Master of the Bridge. Karn Liberated just fits the need of spot removal and the power of possibly getting Tron out early to get him out really early. Tezzeret is a really cool planeswalker from a box topper from long ago. He gives our Creatures and Planeswalkers affinity for Artifacts, and also is a spot removal with his +2 damage ability. His -3 ability lets us get back Artifacts from our graveyard, and his ultimate ability -8 gives us a bunch of free Artifacts off the top 10 cards of our library. I think he really fits the theme of this type of deck and will be really fun to play.
As for the Creatures within the build I tried to run a lot of synergy and high value Creatures. I also tried to run as many of the Construct Creatures as I could to fit that theme. The deck runs 9 construct Creatures in: Steel Overseer, Chief of the Foundry, Foundry Inspector, Scrap Trawler, Cryptothrall, Phyrexian Metamorph, Myr Battlesphere, Noxious Gearhulk, and Cyberdrive Awakener.
We also have several cards which give protections to our Artifacts and or Creatures. We have the traditional Teferi's Protection but we also have Bronze Guardian, Padeem, Consul of Innovation, and Losheel, Clockwork Sentinel. There's also 4 cards that have crusade like effects for our Artifact Creatures. We have Forsaken Monument, Urza, Prince of Kroog, Tempered Steel, and Master of Etherium.
Our main goals are to jam out Artifact Creatures, destroy our opponents threats, and to start swinging for damage. If they do not have a lot of spot removal or wrath effects our synergies will not be able to be kept up with. There's also several cards which copy Artifacts and bring Artifacts back from our graveyard. So even if they kill a couple of our threats we can gain value by playing a card like Teshar, Ancestor's Apostle and getting back some of our smaller aggro Creatures.
The deck also runs 10 cards that give us extra draws and card advantage. These consist of: Rhystic Study, Mirrodin Besieged (which is also a win condition), Mystic Forge, One with the Machine, Esper Sentinel, Baleful Strix, Losheel, Clockwork Scholar, Padeem, Consul of Innovation, Skullclamp, and Thopter Spy Network.
Overall the deck is well rounded with the exception of counterspells. However, I think the increase in spot removal and the wrath effects that won't affect our own board state will outweigh the potential of running a few counterspells. The deck's mana base may be a little slow with the tapped Artifact lands so the mana base may need some work but this is a good less expensive mana base to start with. A must have is the Urza's Saga with many great options to support its 3rd effect. The value you get out of that land in an Artifact deck is just amazing! I hope this Urza, Chief Artificer build gives you some good ideas on how to modify your precon or to start one from scratch!
Until Next Time,