In this Poroscope episode, we will continue to conquer the Commander 2020 decks! This time, we look into the Mardu-colored (white-black-red) Ruthless Regiment human tribal deck! Typical for its colors, the deck is aggressive and creature-based and has a ton of potential for some nice card changes!
Humans as a tribe have been a multi-format all-star-tribal in Magic for a long time. In the year 2017, all the precon-decks were tribal-themed. Humans did not get their own deck back in 2017 but in the forthcoming release of Commander decks, there will be this deck, mainly focusing on the human tribe.
Tribal decks are usually beginner-friendly because of their usually easy upgrades. Creatures with a human subtype are found through all the decades of Magic and even though two colors are taken off from this, there will be a ton of nice human creatures you can try in this deck! Upgrading tribals lets you also try different deck archetypes as you can choose between various effects the creatures have.
Let's focus on the deck now. As you might guess the decks main wincon is to deal enough damage with creatures to beat down all the opponents. Jirina Kudro, the default commander will be helpful in this as it has a static ability to boost the power of your human creatures. Other cars that support the aggressive plan included in the deck are for example Shared Animosity, Thalia's Lieutenant, and Sanctuary Lockdown. In addition to creatures and boost effects, the deck contains cards that draw cards, cards that give evasion to creatures, and removal spells.
Besides Jirina Kudro, the deck can be commanded by either Kelsien, the Plague or partners Trynn, Champion of Freedom, and Silvar, Devourer of the Free. From these three, I would definitely pick up the default commander, Jirina Kudro. Kelsien seems to be an interesting card, but I think it would definitely work better in a more commander-centric deck with a ton of removal spells. The partners in this deck are more focused on sacrifice theme and even though they have lots of synergy with the other cards in the deck, they would probably demand a bit more midrange deck around them. All the possible commanders are interesting though and it is impossible to say which ones would be the absolute best, at least for now.
How to improve the deck?
Upgrading your tribal deck takes a ton of time. Usually, there are many alternatives for different cards to be included in the final deck. Humans as a tribal could be upgraded roughly in two different categories. Either you could go for full-on aggro with lots of cheap creatures and anthem effects or you could go for the more midrange option with creatures that tax the other players. Good examples for human creatures in this category would be Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, Thalia, Heretic Cathar, and Kambal, Consul of Allocation.
If you choose to go the full-on aggro way, you should include at least Coat of Arms, which gives a massive boost for tribal decks. Aggro tribals can also take advantage of Adaptive Automaton, Metallic Mimic and Mirror Entity, which of the latter one can easily run away with the game on its own.
Without any upgrades, the deck would still probably be a very good option in a precon-only-game with the other Commander 2020 decks.
All of the Commander 2020 released together with Ikoria contain a card, that you can cast for free if you control a commander. In this deck, the card is Flawless Maneuver, which grants indestructible for your creatures until the end of turn. The card is very good in this deck and you could include more anti-board wipe cards for this deck, such as Boros Charm, Unbreakable Formation, and Make a Stand. Selfless Spirit will also do the trick!
If I were to chose, I would probably upgrade the deck to a more aggressive direction. Putting in a ton of low mana cost human creatures would probably be the way. I would also increase the number of creatures to something between 35 and 38 to make it aggressive enough. Some support cards would also be included but not too many as drawing only the support and not enough creatures will lead the player to end up in a situation where they only have support without any attacking power. In the deck, there are 36 lands included. I would cut maybe 2-3 lands and change some of the lands to ones that come into play untapped to be sure that the deck is really aggressive enough.
All in all, the Ruthless Regiment looks a nice aggro deck that might be the most powerful out of the box in a precon-only matchup! With small upgrades, the deck could probably make its way to victory in other tables as well!
Pekka "Löhis" Löhönen