Tuesday Night Takeover

Halana and Alena +1/+1 Counters Brewed EDH

Whatever our souls are made of ours are the same!

Art:Halana and Alena, Partners by Jason Rainville

Welcome to another Installment of Brewed EDH:

Halana and Alena is a fun Gruul counters matter strategy which in addition to being a stompy style deck allows us to get big combat swings with Halana and Alena’s ablility of making creatures big. Combined with Ramp a bunch of ways to get counters and big green finishers this deck is a ton of fun! You will like this deck if you are a fan of other stompy archetypes and like big creatures with not a ton of interaction. We are in every focused on our gameplan and outpacing our opponents not stopping what they are doing.

The Deck:

Halana and Alena, Partners +1/+1 Counters!

Commander (1)
Halana and Alena, Partners

Creatures (31)
Birds of Paradise
Elvish Mystic
Fyndhorn Elves
Llanowar Elves
Termagant Swarm
Goblin Anarchomancer
Champion of Lambholt
Guardian Augmenter
Kami of Whispered Hopes
Kodama of the West Tree
Rishkar, Peema Renegade
Scurry Oak
Selvala, Heart of the Wilds
Shaman of Forgotten Ways
Tuya Bearclaw
Beast Whisperer
Bloodspore Thrinax
Cazur, Ruthless Stalker
Forgotten Ancient
Ivy Lane Denizen
Questing Beast
Renata, Called to the Hunt
Herd Baloth
Thundering Mightmare
Xenagos, God of Revels
Pathbreaker Ibex
Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider
Ancient Bronze Dragon
Zopandrel, Hunger Dominus
Craterhoof Behemoth

Planeswalkers (1)
Minsc & Boo, Timeless Heroes

Spells (14)
Worldly Tutor
Heroic Intervention
Solidarity of Heroes
Three Visits
Beast Within
Inspiring Call
Invigorating Surge
Kodama’s Reach
Ruinous Intrusion
Triumph of the Hordes
Chandra’s Ignition
Overwhelming Stampede

Artifacts (8)
Sol Ring
The Ozolith
Lightning Greaves
Ozolith, the Shattered Spire
Staff of Titania
Strionic Resonator
Dragon Throne of Tarkir
The Great Henge

Enchantments (9)
Aggravated Assault
Beastmaster Ascension
Branching Evolution
Hydra’s Growth
Master Chef
Rhythm of the Wild
Tribute to the World Tree
All will be one
Primeval Bounty
Lands (36)
Boseiju, Who Endures
Castle Garenbrig
Cinder Glade
Command Tower
Cragcrown Pathway
Drannith Ruins
Exotic Orchard
Fabled Passage
Game Trail
High Market
Highland Forest
Karn’s Bastion
Karplusan Forest
Kessig Wolf Run
Mossfire Valley
Oran-Rief, the Vastwood
Rockfall Vale
Rogue’s Passage
Rootbound Crag
Skarrg, the Rage Pits
Sokenzan, Crucible of Defiance
Spire Garden
Stomping Ground

Why Halana and Alena?

I picked Halana and Alena because they are a fun build around commander in Gruul, even though the do a lot of the same things as most Gruul decks they were very fun to build around and play some Gruul cards that are not staples in every Gruul deck. Overall in testing just a fun experience and great to play. I think this deck is perfect for new players as it is fun and rewarding without requiring a ton of game knowledge!

Deck Overview:

Halana and Alena are the core of our deck so of course we built around them! But to start we need to talk about or ramp package this is nothing too unexpected playing classic ramp like Shaman of Forgotten Ways and Elvish Mystic as well Biophagus which is especially good in this deck. For spell ramp we are playing the commander duo staples Kodama's Reach and Cultivate as well as Three Visits. Once we get a board established we want to cast our creatures to give +1/+1 counters such as Ivy Lane Denizen which is also one of our main combo pieces. Ancient Bronze Dragon is another great way to get a ton of counters on Halana and Alena and another creature and gain the benefit from having a big creature and make Halana and Alena’s ability better for our next time combat step. Xenagos, God of Revels is essentially a second copy of Halana and Alena and can get out of hand when both are on the field. Since we are a +1/+1 counter deck one of the best cards in our deck is The Ozolith allowing any of our creatures dying to store there counters on the Ozolith and move them to other creatures later, I find the best thing to do is to move them onto Halana and Alena for their ability benefit. Since we are able to give our creatures trample very easily commander damage kills with Halana and Alena is absolutely option but is not the primary gameplan strategy. Another great option for big damage is All Will Be One when using Halana or Alena’s ability especially in the late game can deal huge damage and be a viable win condition for the deck. We are a Gruul deck so we are packing one of the best green cards Champion of Lambholt which when combined with Halana and Alena allows us too make it so our creatures cannot be blocked at all which makes games end very quickly. Overall are primary gameplay strategy is like a lot of other Gruul decks cast our big creatures and buff em up and swing, but with Halana and Alena we can buff our creatures up very easily and start swinging for the fences!

Strengths of the Deck:

  • Can set up large creatures quickly
  • Can end games quickly
  • Combo potential

Weaknesses of the Deck:

  • No interaction
  • Can be hard to restart once fully stopped
  • Deck is worse without Halana and Alena

Deck Stats:

Sample Hands:

Main Win Conditions:

Our main win condition is typically attacking and utilizing our big creatures combined with Craterhoof Behemoth and Triumph of the Hordes to finish out games but we also have a few combos!

Herd Baloth + Ivy Lane Denizen and optionally Chandra's Ignition

Result: Infinite creature tokens. Infinite ETB. Infinite +1/+1 counters on Herd Baloth. Requires: Ivy Lane Denizen on the battlefield. Herd Baloth in hand. 3GG available. Steps: Cast Herd Baloth by paying 3GG Ivy Lane Denizen triggers, putting a +1/+1 counter on Herd Baloth. Herd Baloth triggers, putting a green Beast token onto the battlefield. Repeat from step 2. Utilize Chandra’s Ignition to kill opponents outside of combat step

Scurry Oak + Ivy Lane Denizen and optionally Chandra's Ignition

Result: Infinite creature tokens. Infinite +1/+1 counters on Scurry Oak. Infinite ETB. Requires: Ivy Lane Denizen on the battlefield. Scurry Oak in hand. 2G available. Steps: Cast Scurry Oak by paying 2G. Ivy Lane Denizen triggers, putting a +1/+1 counter on Scurry Oak. Scurry Oak’s last ability triggers, allowing you to create a 1/1 Squirrel token. Repeat from step 2. Utilize Chandra’s Ignition to kill opponents outside of combat step

Aggravated Assault + Selvala, Heart of the Wilds

Result: Infinite colored mana. Infinite combat phases. Requires: All permanents on the battlefield. Selvala does not have summoning sickness. You control a creature with power seven or greater. G available. Steps: Activate Selvala to add 3RRG. Activate Aggravated Assualt, untapping all creatures you control and gaining an addition combat step and post combat mainphase. Repeat.


In conclusion I think that Halana and Alena is a very cool commander with a very straightforward and fun strategy. I think this deck is great in a meta with a lot of other creature decks, and this is a great deck to give a new or starting out player as it is fun and lets you do it but does not have the advanced strategy spellslinger style things that a lot of commander decks have.

Thanks for reading to the end!