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Fires of Invention Art

The Brawl Project: Basically Jeskai Fires

Hello everybody and welcome to The Brawl Project! For those of you who aren’t familiar with the series, The Brawl Project includes deck lists, deck techs, and gameplay videos with some of my friends across the Magicverse, culminating in an article every week. Some previous entries include top 10 lists, budget decks, and of course your standard commander spotlights. I’m excited to take The Brawl Project to ChannelFireball.com, where a lot of people who I’ve really looked up to over the years have provided some of the highest quality content available for free. * That’s exactly what I hope to be able to do, and I hope you enjoy the ride!

Oh yeah, I run a giveaway every week, so definitely check that out.

A couple weeks ago, I was fortunate enough to get invited to Twitch Rivals and even make the Top 32 with Jeskai Fires! I had such a blast playing the deck that I knew I’d have to try to translate it over to Brawl as best as I could. For those who aren’t familiar with Jeskai Fires, the deck aims to land a quick Fires of Invention, then cast two expensive spells a turn while having mana available for the activated abilities of cards like Cavalier of Flame or Castle Vantress.

View post on imgur.com

The deck packs a tremendous punch but also has its limitations. It doesn’t play well on the opponent’s turn, and you have a two-spell-per-turn limit so cards that don’t impact the battlefield have a real cost attached to them. While you may think cards like Opt and Shimmer of Possibility would be great for this deck to find the Fires of Invention, keep in mind that they are not spectacular when you actually have Fires out, as they count toward your spell limit.

The best cards for this deck are creatures that draw cards (Cavalier of Gales), give haste (Cavalier of Flame), do both (Kenrith, the Returned King), have a huge impact on the game (Agent of Treachery); or lands with activated abilities. Notably, lands are not spells and thus don’t count toward your two spell limit, so activating Castle Vantress to find the spells you need is preferable taking up a valuable spell slot with a card like Opt. This skews the mana curve of the deck way upward, and plays the highest land count of any deck I’ve played in Standard—29. It’s worth it though, because you absolutely need your land drops in this deck and make sure you hit five on time every game.

Fires of InventionCavalier of FlameKenrith, the Returned King - Collector Pack ExclusiveCastle Vantress

Unfortunately, we’re Brawling today and have to follow the color identity rules, so no Kenrith.

Image of Kenrith, crossed out in green with a crying emoji.

(Disclaimer: Technically you can play Kenrith as the commander for your deck and have access to him, but this article series becomes pretty repetitive if every article is “And here’s another thing you can do with Kenrith/Golos, Tireless Pilgrim!”, as viable as it may be.)

Let’s take a look at today’s commander, Kykar, Wind’s Fury:

Kykar, Wind's Fury

Pros:

• Gives us the colors we need!
• Creates tokens
• It and its tokens have evasion
• Can create red mana when tokens are in play

Cons:

• Small for its cost
• Vulnerable to removal
• No ETB effect

Kykar prefers noncreature spells—and if you’re willing to comply, provides you with an army of Spirits for your trouble, which can be sacrificed for mana. We get access to Ugin, the Ineffable, which is fantastic here, as we can sacrifice the Spirits Ugin makes to get the card right away. Saheeli, Sublime Artificer is another big hit whose effect is similar to Kykar’s though with Servo tokens. Those two along with Kykar go very well with Divine Visitation, turning any and all tokens we may make into Angels, a sizeable upgrade. However, we’re missing cards like Honor of the Pure or Intangible Virtue which would help build a dedicated token deck. Even cards like Ethereal Absolution which work great with Kykar are outside our color identity.

That said, the incidental tokens work extremely well with Cavalier of Flame, and we are here to build Jeskai Fires anyway. The deck lists below are mostly in line with what Jeskai Fires has to offer, with a little bit of the Kykar-specific synergies thrown in.

Deck List: Kykar, Basically Jeskai Fires

1 Kykar, Wind's Fury
1 Hallowed Fountain
1 Sacred Foundry
1 Steam Vents
1 Temple of Triumph
1 Temple of Epiphany
1 Swiftwater Cliffs
1 Tranquil Cove
1 Wind-Scarred Crag
1 Castle Ardenvale
1 Castle Vantress
1 Castle Embereth
1 Mobilized District
1 Fabled Passage
1 Command Tower
1 Cryptic Caves
1 Field of the Dead
1 Blast Zone
3 Mountain
6 Island
3 Plains
1 Cavalier of Gales
1 Cavalier of Flame
1 Bonecrusher Giant/Stomp
1 Realm-Cloaked Giant/Cast Off
1 Sphinx of Foresight
1 Agent of Treachery
1 Cavalier of Dawn
1 God-Eternal Kefnet
1 Fires of Invention
1 Deafening Clarion
1 Drawn from Dreams
1 Teferi, Time Raveler
1 Heraldic Banner
1 Saheeli, Sublime Artificer
1 Narset, Parter of Veils
1 Chandra, Awakened Inferno
1 Dovin, Grand Arbiter
1 Ugin, the Ineffable
1 Sarkhan the Masterless
1 Shimmer of Possibility
1 Divine Visitation
1 Conclave Tribunal
1 Arcane Signet - Brawl Deck Exclusive
1 Chromatic Lantern
1 Prison Realm
1 Winged Words
1 Unsummon
1 Kasmina's Transmutation
1 Frogify
1 Flame Sweep
MTG Arena Importable Deck List

Commander
1 Kykar, Wind’s Fury (M20) 212

Deck
1 Cavalier of Gales (M20) 52
1 Fires of Invention (ELD) 125
1 Cavalier of Flame (M20) 125
1 Bonecrusher Giant (ELD) 115
1 Deafening Clarion (GRN) 165
1 Drawn from Dreams (M20) 56
1 Teferi, Time Raveler (WAR) 221
1 Sphinx of Foresight (RNA) 55
1 Heraldic Banner (ELD) 222
1 Agent of Treachery (M20) 43
1 Saheeli, Sublime Artificer (WAR) 234
1 Narset, Parter of Veils (WAR) 61
1 Chandra, Awakened Inferno (M20) 127
1 Dovin, Grand Arbiter (RNA) 167
1 Ugin, the Ineffable (WAR) 2
1 Sarkhan the Masterless (WAR) 143
1 Shimmer of Possibility (RNA) 51
1 Divine Visitation (GRN) 10
1 Conclave Tribunal (GRN) 6
1 Arcane Signet (ELD) 331
1 Cavalier of Dawn (M20) 10
1 Chromatic Lantern (GRN) 233
1 Prison Realm (WAR) 26
1 Winged Words (M20) 80
1 God-Eternal Kefnet (WAR) 53
1 Unsummon (M20) 78
1 Kasmina’s Transmutation (WAR) 57
1 Frogify (ELD) 47
1 Flame Sweep (M20) 139
1 Realm-Cloaked Giant (ELD) 26
3 Mountain (ELD) 265
6 Island (ELD) 257
3 Plains (ELD) 253
1 Hallowed Fountain (RNA) 251
1 Sacred Foundry (GRN) 254
1 Steam Vents (GRN) 257
1 Temple of Triumph (M20) 257
1 Temple of Epiphany (M20) 253
1 Swiftwater Cliffs (M20) 252
1 Tranquil Cove (M20) 259
1 Wind-Scarred Crag (M20) 260
1 Castle Ardenvale (ELD) 238
1 Castle Vantress (ELD) 242
1 Castle Embereth (ELD) 239
1 Mobilized District (WAR) 249
1 Fabled Passage (ELD) 244
1 Command Tower (ELD) 333
1 Cryptic Caves (M20) 244
1 Field of the Dead (M20) 247
1 Blast Zone (WAR) 244

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Please note: I made a few changes after filming this video, notably adding Flame Sweep and Unsummon in the place of The Royal Scions and Precognitive Perception.

We only have one Fires of Invention and one Cavalier of Flame, but this deck is definitely capable of doing Jeskai Fires things. Cavalier of Dawn is a nice catchall answer to an opposing threat (the 3/3 Golem it leaves behind is easily outclassed), and Sphinx of Foresight and God-Eternal Kefnet make for reasonable large flying threats. At the top of the curve we have Ugin, the Ineffable and Agent of Treachery, both capable of dealing with just about anything while giving us some added value.

View post on imgur.com

Since our curve starts at 3 and we don’t really start playing the game until turn four, we’re going to need a few cards to reset the battlefield and halt our opponent’s advances. We can only play one copy of Deafening Clarion, but Flame Sweep works well with our deck as it doesn’t hit our Spirit tokens. Rounding out our sweepers we have Chandra, Awakened Inferno and Realm-Cloaked Giant.

As far as targeted removal, we have Frogify, Kasmina’s Transmutation, Prison Realm, Conclave Tribunal, and Unsummon. The “good” ones are Prison Realm and Conclave Tribunal, both able to answer any commander for cheap, and the convoke on Conclave Tribunal works well with Kykar’s tokens. The two Frogify effects are, unfortunately, some of our better cheap answers to large creatures (as my confidence in Pacifism is pretty low). Unsummon may seem odd, but it continues to overperform for me in Brawl and I see it as premium unconditional spot removal, even if its target will make its inevitable return.

Field of the DeadCastle ArdenvaleCastle EmberethCastle VantressBlast Zone

We take after the high land count of the Standard version of this deck, and since we have so many lands but only access to one Castle Vantress, we need to dig a little deeper to find things to do with our 29 lands. We’re playing so many lands and we have access to a few excellent mana fixers in Command Tower, Arcane Signet, and Chromatic Lantern, I figure we can get ambitious with what we include. Field of the Dead seems like an easy inclusion, as we will be playing lands with many different names, and even colorless lands with activated abilities like Blast Zone make the cut. Castle Embereth seems pretty out of place, but if we have enough creatures it can definitely pull its weight.

Divine Visitation

Divine Visitation deserves a special shout-out in this deck! While we aren’t leaning heavily on the tokens theme, there are a lot of cards that just happen to create tokens. We have Kykar, of course, but also Dovin, Grand Arbiter, Saheeli, Sublime Artificer, Sarkhan, the Masterless (technically), Ugin, the Ineffable, Castle Ardenvale, and Field of the Dead. You have to take a turn off to develop the Divine Visitation, but often the payoff is well worth it.

All right, it’s time to turn back the clock and see how we can upgrade this deck with the Historic card pool!

Deck List: Kykar, Basically Historic Fires

1 Kykar, Wind's Fury
1 Castle Ardenvale
1 Castle Vantress
1 Memorial to Genius
1 Castle Embereth
1 Glacial Fortress
1 Hallowed Fountain
1 Sulfur Falls
1 Steam Vents
1 Temple of Epiphany
1 Clifftop Retreat
1 Sacred Foundry
1 Temple of Triumph
1 Arch of Orazca
1 Blast Zone
1 Command Tower
1 Cryptic Caves
1 Field of the Dead
1 Field of Ruin
1 Fabled Passage
2 Mountain
5 Island
3 Plains
1 Cavalier of Flame
1 Cavalier of Dawn
1 Cavalier of Gales
1 Realm-Cloaked Giant/Cast Off
1 Teferi, Time Raveler
1 Teferi, Hero of Dominaria
1 Dovin, Grand Arbiter
1 Saheeli, Sublime Artificer
1 Narset, Parter of Veils
1 Tezzeret, Artifice Master
1 Chandra, Awakened Inferno
1 Fires of Invention
1 Drawn from Dreams
1 Deafening Clarion
1 Karn's Temporal Sundering
1 In Bolas's Clutches
1 Cleansing Nova
1 Arcane Signet - Brawl Deck Exclusive
1 Unsummon
1 Heraldic Banner
1 Ugin, the Ineffable
1 Karn, Scion of Urza
1 Legion's Landing/Adanto, the First Fort
1 Conclave Tribunal
1 Prison Realm
1 Divine Visitation
1 Search for Azcanta/Azcanta, the Sunken Ruin
1 Frogify
1 Kasmina's Transmutation
1 Flame Sweep
MTG Arena Importable Deck List

Commander
1 Kykar, Wind’s Fury (M20) 212

Deck
1 Cavalier of Gales (M20) 52
1 Fires of Invention (ELD) 125
1 Cavalier of Flame (M20) 125
1 Bonecrusher Giant (ELD) 115
1 Deafening Clarion (GRN) 165
1 Drawn from Dreams (M20) 56
1 Teferi, Time Raveler (WAR) 221
1 Sphinx of Foresight (RNA) 55
1 Heraldic Banner (ELD) 222
1 Agent of Treachery (M20) 43
1 Saheeli, Sublime Artificer (WAR) 234
1 Narset, Parter of Veils (WAR) 61
1 Chandra, Awakened Inferno (M20) 127
1 Dovin, Grand Arbiter (RNA) 167
1 Ugin, the Ineffable (WAR) 2
1 Sarkhan the Masterless (WAR) 143
1 Shimmer of Possibility (RNA) 51
1 Divine Visitation (GRN) 10
1 Conclave Tribunal (GRN) 6
1 Arcane Signet (ELD) 331
1 Cavalier of Dawn (M20) 10
1 Chromatic Lantern (GRN) 233
1 Prison Realm (WAR) 26
1 Winged Words (M20) 80
1 God-Eternal Kefnet (WAR) 53
1 Unsummon (M20) 78
1 Kasmina’s Transmutation (WAR) 57
1 Frogify (ELD) 47
1 Flame Sweep (M20) 139
1 Realm-Cloaked Giant (ELD) 26
3 Mountain (ELD) 265
6 Island (ELD) 257
3 Plains (ELD) 253
1 Hallowed Fountain (RNA) 251
1 Sacred Foundry (GRN) 254
1 Steam Vents (GRN) 257
1 Temple of Triumph (M20) 257
1 Temple of Epiphany (M20) 253
1 Swiftwater Cliffs (M20) 252
1 Tranquil Cove (M20) 259
1 Wind-Scarred Crag (M20) 260
1 Castle Ardenvale (ELD) 238
1 Castle Vantress (ELD) 242
1 Castle Embereth (ELD) 239
1 Mobilized District (WAR) 249
1 Fabled Passage (ELD) 244
1 Command Tower (ELD) 333
1 Cryptic Caves (M20) 244
1 Field of the Dead (M20) 247
1 Blast Zone (WAR) 244

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Honestly, it doesn’t look too different. We do get a couple of big, big upgrades in Search for Azcanta and Teferi, Hero of Dominaria, both of which have power levels that are completely off the charts and should be an auto-include in most Historic decks. What I’m most excited about, however, is Karn’s Temporal Sundering. Playing Standard, I never got the opportunity to play the sweet legendary sorceries from Dominaria, and Brawl is the perfect place to make use of Jaya’s Immolating Inferno or Primevals’ Glorious Rebirth. The ability to play Kykar then Karn’s Temporal Sundering immediately if you have a Fires of Invention out is an absurd amount of value and sets you up well to cast two huge spells on the next turn.

Less exciting, but still very useful, is the upgrade to the mana. Glacial Fortress, Clifftop Retreat, and Sulfur Falls are excellent additions that we would be desperate for in Standard. I mentioned Search for Azcanta before with regards to its power level, but it also fits well in this deck in particular as it adds to our land count and gives us something to do with our mana with Fires of Invention out that doesn’t count as a spell. Even Legion’s Landing makes the cut here, as a Kykar followed by Legion’s Landing gives you the three creatures you would need to flip it, from which point you can proceed to make Angel Vampire Soldiers.


"The Brawl Project. www.twitch.tv/Sunyviel, Mondays-Thursdays @ Noon Pacific"

That’s all for today! Thanks for reading, and you can always tweet @ me on Twitter or pop into the stream to share any and all takes you might have on Brawl. See you next time!

*To be clear, I’m really happy SCG is going in the direction they are and making a commitment to supporting content creators by moving to all Premium content; it just didn’t fit the goal of my content being accessible to everyone. I’m very grateful for the opportunity SCG provided me, and look forward to what they have in store for the future.

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