Brawling With The Royal Scions

With Oko, Thief of Crowns banned from Brawl, it’s time for Throne of Eldraine’s other three-mana planeswalker card to shine! Dayv Doberne builds two decks around The Royal Scions, one for each Kenrith twin!

Hello everyone and welcome back to The Brawl Project! Throne of Eldraine has been out for a little over a month now, and I wanted to take a closer look at some of the chase mythic rares of the set. Get your Food ready and put on your decorative antlers because today we’ll be talking about the hot new three-mana planeswalker that effectively enters the battlefield with a staggering six loyalty, Oko, Thief of…

… Crowns’ counterpart in the set, The Royal Scions. Yes, with the banning of Oko, Thief of Crowns, the landscape of Brawl is open for business for creature commanders of all mana costs and all “Does this creature have an immediate effect?” statuses. I definitely wasn’t planning on talking about Oko today, as I’m sure there are plenty of articles out there recapping Mythic Championship VI that are obligated to bring you more discussion about Food and Elk tokens than you ever needed. I was aware of both these things well ahead of time.

*nervously hides notecard filled with Elk puns*

Joking aside, The Royal Scions has quickly become one of my favorite commanders to Brawl with because of its flexibility and its support for a wide range of synergies. If you need to dig toward a certain effect or help power up some graveyard shenanigans, The Royal Scions ticks up to do that. If you want to push an attacker through or help capitalize on Krenko, Tin Street Kingpin or Dreadhorde Arcanist, The Royal Scions ticks up to do that as well. Its ultimate can come down as early as Turn 6 if left unchecked, which draws a bunch of cards and does a bunch of damage!

Let’s take a look at some of the key cards that synergize with The Royal Scions:

Draw-Two Synergies

The Royal Scions’s first ability guarantees the chance to draw a second card, allowing these cards to generate incremental value each turn. A 2/3 flyer for two mana isn’t necessarily strong, but if it gets a +1/+1 counter each turn, that’s a very real threat. Similarly, the 1/1 flier from Improbable Alliance or the three damage from Irencrag Pyromancer can get out of hand quickly if you can keep your opponent on the back foot.

Discard/Graveyard Matters Synergies

With a commander that ticks up to loot, there are a few cards available to us that really like that we discard a bunch of cards. Bag of Holding is a really nice one here, allowing us to recoup any cards we tossed away with The Royal Scions. The Magic Mirror is another nice one, receiving a large discount if the instant/sorcery density is high enough to enable it.

Power Matters Synergies

The Royal Scions’s second ability allows for a reliable power buff, which can yield +1/+1 counters (Goblin Banneret), the ability to cast more expensive spells for free (Dreadhorde Arcanist), or Goblin tokens (Krenko, Tin Street Kingpin). Technically power always matters because doing more damage is always desirable, but now it matters more.

The decks featured today definitely have an aggressive slant toward them, but I’ve found that the gameplan for The Royal Scions is constantly evolving, and you will frequently have to reevaluate your role. Should you hold up a counterspell or develop a threat? Should you push in more damage with The Royal Scions or sculpt your hand? It leads to some really fun and interesting gameplay, so I strongly recommend trying it out.

Before we get to the decklists, a reminder that there’s a giveaway this week!

Okay, get ready for The Royal Scions, Red and Blue Versions!

Royal Scions Red and Blue

For today’s article I thought it would make sense to present two decklists for The Royal Scions — one that dabbles in the controlling blue elements for flexibility and one that focuses the red elements to maximize aggression. Like in Pokemon, there are exclusives to the Red Version like Arcanine (Torbran, Thane of Red Fell), but you will only find Victreebel (The Magic Mirror) in the Blue version. If you want to play a card like Ral, Izzet Viceroy in the Red version, the only way to obtain it is via a trade with somebody who has the opposite version, requiring an additional cable purchased from Wizards of the Coast and involving a convoluted step-by-step process not unlike some archaic dance GameShark. Wait a second…

I’m just going to drop this thought and move on to the decklists.

The Royal Scions Red version plays an all-out aggressive gameplan, running many cheap red creatures which are happy to receive the buff from the planeswalker. In addition to the cards discussed above, this list’s curve is low enough to play Experimental Frenzy and Light Up the Stage to keep the cards flowing. Haste creatures are a boon here, able to pick up The Royal Scions’s buff the turn they enter the battlefield and attack.

The deck plays much like a mono-red deck but gains access to Unsummon and Brazen Borrower to (temporarily) remove blockers a red deck might not be able to deal with. The Royal Scions’s role here is generally to push damage through and distract potential blockers as they threaten to go ultimate.

While the Red version offers sheer power, the Blue version offers finesse and flexibility. Against fast decks like Judith, the Scourge Diva or Torbran, Thane of Red Fell, the goal is to trade creatures as often as possible and rely on something like Ral, Izzet Viceroy or The Magic Mirror to pull ahead; but against a slower deck like Kiora, Behemoth Beckoner, the goal is to develop an early threat and then protect it rather than trade with it. Countermagic in the form of Negate, Quench, and Sinister Sabotage allows this deck to deal with the larger spells and stay competitive into the late-game. While this deck can play many roles, it works best when on the offensive, so develop those threats early and only hold up your countermagic when your opponent is about to throw a haymaker.

Welcome Our New Three-Mana Planeswalker

That will be all for today! I hope you enjoy The Royal Scions as much as I did, as I enjoyed spending most of last Wednesday playing these decks. I’d also love to see what everybody has come up with; feel free to tweet @ me with pictures of your decklists!

Want to battle? I stream Brawl Monday-Thursday at noon Pacific, and I happily take on challengers (because there’s no queue on Magic Arena, alas). Come and show off your Brawl creations!


See you all next week!