Breya, Etherium Shaper is a commander I have wanted to build with ever since it was spoiled from CMDR 2016. Building with a four color commander can be somewhat difficult because you have 4 colors worth of cards to choose from so I decided to be modestly strict to the theme of my deck: eggs.
What are eggs? Eggs get their name from cards that literally have eggs in them like Darkwater Egg. More importantly they are small artifacts that you can tap for mana (or another small effect) and sac them to draw a card. Modern tron uses cards such as Chromatic Sphere and Chromatic Star that can be saced for a mana of any color and cantrip as well (this can be helpful in a 4 color deck).
Perhaps most famous is Stanislav Cifka’s modern eggs deck that won the Return to Ravnica Pro Tour. Its a deck that is trying to sculpt a turn where you can send multiple eggs and lands to your graveyard in a single turn and cast Second Sunrise or Faith’s Reward to return the egg effects and lands back to the battlefield and give you a chance to draw through your deck and cast pyrite spellbomb over and over to kill your opponent in one huge combo turn.
Here’s my Breya Eggs List:
The Main Strats
This Breya, Etherium Shaper deck doesn’t try to win through combos alone. It is using the egg effects to cantrip through your deck so you can find what you need and eventually hit a mass artifact reanimation effect like Scrap Mastery or Open the Vaults so that you can mass reanimate all your eggs and chain tons of value. Our main win cons are either achieving massive card advantage or cantriping into one of our infinite combos. I would call this Breya deck a midrange value/combo deck.
Why does Breya fit into our strategy? She offers us tons of utility by killing problematic creatures, gaining us life in a pinch, plus we can use the eggs as fodder for her abilities when we need to! Against pure aggro strategies she brings us 3 bodies that can chump block as we try to dig through our deck to mass reanimate our eggs. Breya also serves as a damage outlet for us to combo with when we achieve infinite mana with artifacts such as Krark-Clan Ironworks or Ashnod’s Altar.
You can cantrip into the following infinite combos in the deck:
- Ashnod’s Altar + Breya + Nim Deathmantle (you let Breya go to the yard each time instead of the command zone for Nim deathmantle triggers that let you make infinite thopers, infinite mana, and through Breya infinite damage to all other players). Krark-Clan ironworks can substitute in for Ashnod’s Altar.
- Ashnod’s Altar + Sword of the Meek + Thopter Foundry (gives you infinite life and infinite flying thopters, if you have Breya on board it also gives you infinite damage. Krark-clan ironworks can substitute in for Ashnod’s Altar.
- You can insert Reckless Fireweaver into the above combos for another source of infinite damage. Sometimes you’ll resurrect enough artifacts into play that Reckless Fireweaver alone gets you there.
- You can use Codex Shredder‘s (5) ability to buyback a mass artifact reanimation effect infinitley if you have a way to net enough mana with each resurrection.
- Lion’s Eye Diamond and Auriok Salvagers are individually very powerful but together allow you to make infinite mana, winning the game through Breya. LED can let you pitch all your cards in hand into the yard before a Scrap Mastery Effect, and Salvagers can rebuy your eggs from the graveyard
- If you untap with a ton of artifacts in play your Tezzeret the Seeker ultimate or Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas ultimate abilities are enough to kill a player.
Paths the Deck Takes
Often the paths this deck takes blur together. These paths are good to know so you can loosely plan how you will win the game.
Cantrip, cantrip, cantrip cantrip cantrip into mass resurrection
This line of play is modestly simple. Your opening hand will contain cantrip effects (eggs or spells like faithless looting) and you will try to cantrip each turn while discarding/sacing artifacts to your graveyard. As opposed to trying to go for value plays with Second Sunrise or Faith’s reward you are going for one big combo turn where you cast Scrap Mastery, Open the Vaults, Roar of Reclamation while you have a ton of eggs in the graveyard alongside a Ashnod’s Altar or a Krark-Clan Ironworks.
Reanimating tons of artifacts is good but you need the mana off of Ashnod’s Altar or Krark-Clan Ironworks to truly get good distance with your mass resurrection turns. You won’t normally cast Altar or Ironworks but instead have them in your graveyard before you mass resurrection. You can cast Breya the turn before to use her and her thopters as sac fodder to initiate your combo once you mass resurrect your artifacts because you can take the 2 colorless you make with each sac and funnel the mana into your mana filtering eggs to give you the colors you need to cast Thopter Foundry, Reshape, or Transmute Artifact to find what you need to kill the table. Or you can use the mana filters to cast Second Sunrise, Faith’s Reward, or Roar of Reclamation to gain tons of value after sacing all of your artifacts.
Second Sunrise, Faith’s Reward, Paradoxical Outcome value turns
If you find any of these three cards super early in the game you can play to have a massive value turn. The later you wait the more value you can obtain but we are playing a combo deck so time is of the essence.
The idea with Second Sunrise and Faith’s reward is we sac all of our artifacts and sac all of our fetchlands (or use Wasteland / Ghost Quarter on our own lands) during a single turn so that they are all eligible to return to play with Second Sunrise and Faith’s Reward. When you are cracking all of your eggs in one turn note that you usually need 1 or 2 mana open to be able to cycle through all of them and cantrip. Permanents put into your graveyard from play have to be put into your graveyard on the same turn that Sunrise / Reward resolves.
Setting up good Second Sunrise turns often works well with sneaking Lotus Bloom into play the turn before via Transmute artifact or Reshape. If you plan on doing the Sunrise/Reward effect during your turn you can Transmute or Reshape into the Lotus Bloom on your turn to initiate the value turn. This way you can also return the artifact you saced for Lotus Bloom back to play.
With Paradoxical Outcome we are trying to have several low costing artifacts in play when we resolve it so that we can bring them all back and draw a bunch of cards. Foundry Inspector can be used alongside Paradoxical during a combo turn to recast most of your eggs for free.
These three cards being instants are incredibly powerful for us. We can use them to survive mass destruction effects such as devastation or bane of progress or pressure counter spell decks by making them make the choice of letting us draw a lot of cards or countering our cantrip enabler. If we can get them to counter Sunrise/Reward/Paradoxical we can peel for our mass artifact reanimation effects (which usually are better). Not immediately cantriping artifacts to the graveyard also allows us to play around graveyard hate a little.
Artificer’s Intuition Power Plays
Artificer’s Intuition can very quickly fill up our graveyard with egg effects. Because most of our mana base produces blue mana it is totally possible that on turn 5 we could cycle away 5 artifacts from our hand into the graveyard. It only takes 1 artifact (any cmc, so you could discard a combo enabler like Krark-Clan Ironworks) to start this cycling process. You discard the first card, find a 1 costing artifact – usually a egg effect. You repeat this process discarding cards that you want into your graveyard and end the process with Lotus Petal or Mana Crypt in your hand so that when you untap you have extra mana to initiate your combo turn. Artificer’s Intuition is extra sweet because we can do these style of plays at instant speed and untap into a mass resurrection effect.
Aetherworks Marvel has a special spot in this deck. Not only can we get a good amount of energy off of our fetchlands and egg effects, but we can sack it to Krark-Clan Ironworks during our combo turns to possibly get multiple uses of its tap ability! This effect is great when paired with Mystical Tutor or Vampiric Tutor to tutor exactly what you want to cast to the top of your deck.
Tips and Tricks for Egg Cantrips
While we usually cycle our eggs for value some of our eggs can be used assertively to deny our opponents the value they seek. Aether Spellbomb and Pyrite Spellbomb can be used to bounce or kill a creature. Remember that the source of this effect is colorless so it can be difficult to gain protection from.
Other spellbombs like Nihil Spellbomb (or Terrarion ) have a draw trigger that occurs when the artifact goes from the battlefield into the graveyard, not when you activate them. This means that you can use Krark-Clan Ironworks to sac them for mana and still get triggers off of them. You can do cute stuff like activate Origin Spellbomb to create the 1/1 myr artifact creature, draw a card, then use that 1/1 artifact creature as fodder to Reshape or Transmute Artifact off of.
Don’t forget that you can use Necrogen Spellbomb to target yourself and discard a powerful artifact!
Combo: We have Torpor Orb and Grafdigger’s Cage (both of which are incredibly easy to tutor/cheat into play) which should slow down most combo decks in the format. We can also use Wheel of Fortune and Memory Jar to disrupt their sorcery speed tutor effects while fueling our own graveyard strategy.
Aggro: Torpor Orb works great here, and Breya offers us possible ways to kill creatures and chump block.
Control: We want to play a little bit slow versus control so we can sculpt our way into threatening huge value plays with Second Sunrise / Faith’s Reward / Paradoxical Outcome. If we can achieve huge value plays we can usually overwhelm the control decks later in the game.
Enchantress: Probably our worst matchup because they will probably be running Rest in Peace and other protective enchantments that give them shroud. We can play slow against them and try to sculpt a hand where we use Cyclonic Rift to bounce their enchantress engine and threaten our own combo turn. This means you’ll slowly commit eggs to the board without sacing them, cyclonic rift Rest in Peace if it is there, then initiate your combo turn.
Why No Enlightened Tutor?
We don’t really need it for the deck, Vampiric and Mystical tutor do enough work as it is and we don’t usually want the best artifacts in our deck to be in our hands – we want them in the graveyard.
If you want to include some countermagic in your deck I could recommend taking out an egg or two, or Foundry Inspector, to fill those spots with counterspells.
If you wanted more card advantage versus midrange/control decks swap in Vedalken Archmage for 1 egg.
How do you like your Breya, Etherium Shaper? Do you like your eggs scrambled? Tell us in the comments below!