Akim, the Soaring Wind

Published April 23rd, 2020

Is is a bird? Is it a dinosaur? It’s Akim, the Soaring Wing our Jeskai legendary 3/4 bird dinosaur for 5 mana. This is a completely token focussed commander there’s no round about way to see it otherwise. It generates a 1/1 flying bird token the first time you make a token each turn and it’s ability is similar to Flying Crane Technique giving double strike to all your token creatures. This was the hardest of the Commander 2020 decks to balance and it ended up going for a artifact support core for Akim and the tokens.

//Commander (1)

Akim, the Soaring Wind

//Lands (36)

Island
Mountain
Plains
Snow-Covered Island
Snow-Covered Mountain
Snow-Covered Plains
Arid Mesa
Bloodstained Mire
Cascade Bluffs
Castle Ardenvale
Cavern of Souls
Celestial Colonnade
Clifftop Retreat
Command Tower
Field of the Dead
Flooded Strand
Glacial Fortress
Marsh Flats
Misty Rainforest
Mystic Gate
Mystic Monastery
Path of Ancestry
Polluted Delta
Rugged Prairie
Scalding Tarn
Windswept Heath
Wooded Foothills
Steam Vents
Volcanic Island
Raugrin Triome
Plateau
Sacred Foundry
Hallowed Fountain
Tundra
Kher Keep
Minamo, School at Water’s Edge

//Artifacts (22)

Arcane Signet
Azorius Signet
Boros Signet
Chromatic Lantern
Coalition Relic
Commander’s Sphere
Expedition Map
Idol of Oblivion
Izzet Signet
Mana Crypt
Mana Vault
Midnight Clock
Retrofitter Foundry
Sensei’s Divining Top
Sol Ring
Talisman of Conviction
Talisman of Creativity
Talisman of Progress
Batterskull
Lightning Greaves
Skullclamp
Sword of Feast and Famine

//Enchantments (7)

Anointed Procession
Blind Obedience
Detention Sphere
Goblin Bombardment
Smothering Tithe
Whirlwind of Thought
Legion’s Landing

//Instants (7)

Brainstorm
Commence the Endgame
Cyclonic Rift
Enlightened Tutor
Mana Drain
Mystic Confluence
Pull from Tomorrow

//Sorceries (3)

Ponder
Preordain
Supreme Verdict

//Planeswalkers (11)

Chandra, Torch of Defiance
Elspeth, Knight-Errant
Elspeth, Sun’s Champion
Gideon, Ally of Zendikar
Jace, the Mind Sculptor
Karn, Scion of Urza
Saheeli, Sublime Artificer
Serra the Benevolent
Tezzeret the Seeker
Tezzeret, Artifice Master
Ugin, the Ineffable

//Creatures (13)

Solemn Simulacrum
Faerie Formation
Sun Titan
Dockside Extortionist
Serra Ascendant
Trinket Mage
Stoneforge Mystic
Kykar, Wind’s Fury
Sai, Master Thopterist
Urza, Lord High Artificer
Geist of Saint Traft
Ephara, God of the Polis
Purphoros, God of the Forge

Synergies

Serra the Benevolent: Serra fits nicely with her angel token creation and flying creature boost. A direct synergy that can curve into Akim and help start some 5/5 flying double strike angels when they work together.

Smothering Tithe: Nothing in Akim that says it has to be a creature token. With both on board if your opponents aren’t paying then get yourself a nice bird to go with the treasure.

Ephara, God of the Polis: Turn your token generation into card draw with an indestructible enchantment. We’re just tacking on value onto value in this deck so that every trigger leads into more resources and Ephara is part of the draw power.

Token Generation

Lands: Kher Keep is simplest land can be the most effective. This is the least mana intensive land with no additional requirements needed that generates a token creature. Create a kobold, get your bird, and do what you will with them. Legion’s Landing when it flips into Adanto, the First Fort is stronger but requires you to trigger it to flip first. These legendary lands can also be untapped with Minamo, School at Water’s Edge for additional use. Castle Ardenvale is the other land but needs a plains in play to not come into play tapped and tapes 4 mana to use.

Artifacts: I’d like to point out Sai, Master Thopterist and Urza, Lord High Artificer as high synergy and support cards for the artifacts. Both of them use Retrofitter Foundry incredibly well. The odd artifact synergy in Akim though is Batterskull. As a common target for Stoneforge Mystic it’s the best living weapon equipment there is and the germ token does indeed trigger Akim.

Planeswalkers: Most of the planeswalkers in the deck generate tokens and the few that don’t are there for support. We make angels, soldiers, constructs, thopters, spirits and knight ally tokens. It’s a design question when analysing a planeswalker if it can protect themselves as a spell and token generation is the primary way they do that.

Card Name: Kher Keep. Mana Cost: . Card Oracle Text: {T}: Add {C}.{1}{R}, {T}: Create a 0/1 red Kobold creature token named Kobolds of Kher Keep.
Card Name: Sai, Master Thopterist. Mana Cost: {2}{U}. Card Oracle Text: Whenever you cast an artifact spell, create a 1/1 colorless Thopter artifact creature token with flying.{1}{U}, Sacrifice two artifacts: Draw a card.. Power/Toughness: 1/4
Card Name: Saheeli, Sublime Artificer. Mana Cost: {1}{U/R}{U/R}. Card Oracle Text: Whenever you cast a noncreature spell, create a 1/1 colorless Servo artifact creature token.−2: Target artifact you control becomes a copy of another target artifact or creature you control until end of turn, except it's an artifact in addition to its other types.

Support

Anointed Procession: The white version of Parallel Lives showing its use in this non-green deck. Doubling tokens is non normally an effect in this colour combination so when this enchantment was released it opened up a lot of options for white token strategies.

Whirlwind of Thought: The Jeskai enchantment from Ikoria is a wonderful draw engine. The deck focuses on a lot of non-creature spells so being able to refuel your hand as you play is great. It works especially well with Sensei’s Divining Top.

Idol of Oblivion: This 2 cost artifact is unbelievably strong in token generation decks. Like Akim it doesn’t care about what kind of token you’ve made whether treasure or creature it’ll give you your card. If it comes down to it you can sacrifice it late game for a 10/10 eldrazi threat.

Card Name: Anointed Procession. Mana Cost: {3}{W}. Card Oracle Text: If an effect would create one or more tokens under your control, it creates twice that many of those tokens instead.
Card Name: Whirlwind of Thought. Mana Cost: {1}{U}{R}{W}. Card Oracle Text: Whenever you cast a noncreature spell, draw a card.
Card Name: Idol of Oblivion. Mana Cost: {2}. Card Oracle Text: {T}: Draw a card. Activate this ability only if you created a token this turn.{8}, {T}, Sacrifice Idol of Oblivion: Create a 10/10 colorless Eldrazi creature token.

Summary

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Our bird dinosaur Commander is an interesting build. While token strategies are not uncommon the interactions with Akim are less explosive than some strategies but more potent in the end. It’s not exactly constant to be able to give your creature tokens double strike but it is a looming threat for your opponents if you leave the mana up to do so.

There are some staples to this strategy such as Skullclamp, Purphoros, God of the Forge, and Goblin Bombardment but many other options didn’t make the cut. The artifact and planeswalker focus seemed to be the best support option to make Akim work but I would like to try an enchantment variant at some point. We’ll see how it shuffles more with some play testing and tuning but what route would you go? Are there any staples that you think should be in that I missed? I think it’s just fun to have a bird dinosaur as a Commander so let’s see how it runs and take it from there.

Article by Cascade.Cascade

The editor-in-chief and creator of Command Beacon. They started playing Magic during the Scars of Mirrodin block and hasn’t been able to stop since.

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