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MTG Challenger Decks 2021: Azorius Control Upgrade Guide

Got the Azorius Control MTG Challenger Deck and want to improve it, so you’ll win more games? Get all the information you need in this Azorius Control Upgrade Guide!

There is a budget upgrade and a full upgrade for each of the 2021 Challenger decks. You can check them out to, decide which one will work best for you. However, if you’re certain you’ll play Azorius Control, let’s get to it.

Challenger Deck 2021 Azorius Control

Azorius Control Challenger Decklist

Creature (6)
Skyclave Cleric
Dream Trawler
Archon of Sun’s Grace

Sorcery (4)
Emeria’s Call
Shatter the Sky
Doomskar

Instant (10)
Neutralize
Saw It Coming
Negate
Thirst for Meaning
Behold the Multiverse

Artifact (2)
Glass Casket

Enchantment (14)
Shark Typhoon
Elspeth Conquers Death
The Birth of Meletis
Omen of the Sea
Banishing Light

Land (24)
Temple of Enlightenment
Plains
Island
Tranquil Cove
Sideboard (15)
Archon of Sun’s Grace
Banishing Light
Glass Casket
Skyclave Apparition
Confounding Conundrum
Mystical Dispute
Essence Scatter

Azorius Control Challenger Deck 2021 – Budget Upgrade

The Azorius Control Challenger Decklist embodies the shell of a control deck, but lacks consistency with its seemingly random 1-ofs and 2-ofs. It also doesn’t play Yorion, Sky Nomad as a companion, which is commonly played among most Azorius control decks. Our budget upgrades will be making the deck more consistent and adding enough cards to play Yorion. Let’s take a look at the new list.

Planeswalker (2)
Niko Aris

Creature (10)
Skyclave Cleric
Skyclave Apparition
Archon of Sun’s Grace
Dream Trawler

Instant (14)
Jwari Disruption
Saw It Coming
Behold the Multiverse
Banish into Fable

Sorcery (7)
Shatter the Sky
Doomskar
Emeria, Shattered Skyclave

Artifact (6)
Glass Casket
Mazemind Tome

Enchantment (14)
The Birth of Meletis
Omen of the Sea
Banishing Light
Elspeth Conquers Death
Shark Typhoon

Land (27)
10 Plains
Island
Temple of Enlightenment
Tranquil Cove
Sideboard (14)
Confounding Conundrum
Mystical Dispute
Essence Scatter
Glass Casket
Banishing Light
Archon of Absolution

Companion (1)
Yorion, Sky Nomad

Here’s what we’ve changed:

The total cost of these budget upgrades is around $30 or so, but they will make the deck significantly better. Let’s check out why:

Budget Upgrades Explained

One thing you may note in these changes is that many more cards are added to the deck then are removed. This is to support Yorion, Sky Nomad as a companion, for which we need 80 cards.

Card Swaps

The first change is removing one Negate and adding 3 Saw it Coming. Saw it Coming can counter any spell, making it much better then Negate in most situations.

Mazemind Tome Azorius Control Challenger Deck 2021 Upgrade Guide

We also cut 3 Thirst for Meaning for 4 Mazemind Tome. While Thirst for Meaning is a great card advantage spell, Mazemind Tome allows you to draw more cards over the course of the game. You can also reset the number of counters on it with Yorion, meaning that it can draw you a whole new hand over the course of a long game.

The final cut in these changes is removing 3 Neutralise for 2 Plains and 1 Island. Because we are going to 80 cards it is important to add more lands to the deck, so we can consistently hit our land drops.

Getting to 80 Cards

Two Skyclave Apparition are put into the main deck from the sideboard. Skyclave Apparition is a versatile and powerful card that is good in almost every matchup. It also works well with Yorion, so adding it to the main deck is a no brainer.

The next change is completing the playset of Archon of Sun’s Grace. With the multitude of Artifacts and Enchantments in our deck, Archon can create a huge board presence by itself. It also interacts well with Yorion and can be backbreaking for aggressive decks. You get one of these Archons from the sideboard.

Niko Aris MTG

Two Niko Aris are added. Niko Aris is a powerful Planeswalker ally in the early game, slowing down the opponent’s attack, and also in the late game, allowing you to draw lots of cards. Because of this Niko Aris is included as a flexible 2 of, that can be useful no matter the situation.

More Additions

We add 4 Jwari Disruption to the main deck. It’s a flexible card, doubling as a situational counterspell and a land. Because of this it is added as a playset, as it will always be useful no matter the situation.

The next change is another no brainer. Doomskar is a board wipe for the slim cost of only three mana. Because of the efficiency of this spell, we add 3 Doomskar to play with the full playset. It really over-performs against aggressive decks.

Banish into Fable How to Make Azorius Control Challenger Deck Better

This next change might be somewhat unexpected, but it is based on a decklist by Mythic Matt which he took to number 5 Mythic. Four Banish into Fable are added to the main deck. This spell might seem over-costed at a glance for 6 mana, however it will usually clone itself, sometimes multiple times. The ability to create three 2/2 tokens and return 3 permanents to their owner’s hands should not be underestimated.

Companion

The most crucial upgrade to the 2021 Azorius Control MTG Challenger Deck is adding Yorion, the Sky Nomad as a companion.

Yorion Sky Nomad Azorius Control Challenger Deck Upgrade

Yorion is a massively powerful card, being an extra card in your starting hand and putting a creature onto the board, while also generating huge amounts of value as it enters the battlefield.

Many of the cards in the Azorius Control Challenger Deck have abilities that trigger when they enter the battlefield, meaning that flickering them with Yorion will allow you to use them again.

Sideboard

That’s all for our main deck and companion changes. However, because we took some cards out of the sideboard, I will recommend some sideboard cards for you to add. You might want to add different cards depending on your expected metagame.

Since we only need to add 2 cards to the sideboard, I would add 2 Archon of Absolution. This niche sideboard card is close to unbeatable for Mono White Aggro, which is a popular deck in Kaldheim Standard.

That’s it for the budget upgrades. Now we’ll take a look at the fully upgraded Azorius Control deck.

Azorius Control 2021 Challenger Deck – Full Upgrade

Planeswalker (2)
Niko Aris

Creature (5)
Archon of Sun’s Grace
Dream Trawler

Instant (12)
Jwari Disruption
Saw It Coming
Banish into Fable

Sorcery (8)
Doomskar
Emeria’s Call
Sea Gate Restoration

Artifact (9)
Glass Casket
Mazemind Tome
Midnight Clock

Enchantment (13)
Omen of the Sea
The Birth of Meletis
Omen of the Sun
Elspeth Conquers Death

Land (31)
Plains
Island
Skyclave Apparition
Temple of Enlightenment
Hengegate Pathway
Raugrin Triome
Castle Vantress
Field of Ruin
Crawling Barrens
Sideboard (14)
Disdainful Stroke
Negate
Mystical Dispute
Shark Typhoon
Glimpse of Freedom
Omen of the Sun
Baneslayer Angel
Sigrid, God-Favored
Annul
Soul-Guide Lantern

Companion (1)
Yorion, Sky Nomad

Our full upgrade for the Azorius Control Challenger Deck is based of Mythic Matt’s decklist, which he played to rank #5 Mythic. Here are the changes you’d need to make from the budget version:

Sideboard – OUT

Note: Sideboard changes are optional

Sideboard – IN

Full Upgrade – Explained

Let’s take a look at how Matt’s changes optimize the deck for competitive play.

Removal Changes

2 Shatter the Sky are replaced by 2 Glass Casket. While Shatter is very strong, we already play 4 Doomskar, which gives us plenty of wraths. In addition to this, Casket has many advantages over Shatter the Sky. It counts as an artifact for Banish into Fable, is much cheaper, doesn’t draw the opponent a card, and can trigger Archon of Sun’s Grace.

Skyclave Apparition MTG

2 Skyclave Apparition replace 2 Banishing Light. This change completes the playset of Skyclave Apparition, which is essential to the deck. While both cards have similar effects, Apparition comes with a creature, meaning that it puts a threat on the board. It also interacts much better with Yorion than Banishing Light, which earns it a slot in the main deck.

Additional Improvements

2 Sea Gate Restoration are added instead of 2 Skyclave Cleric. Sea Gate Restoration, while also doubling as a land and a spell, has the option to enter the battlefield as an untapped land.

1 Emeria’s Call[c] replaces a single [c]Dream Trawler. Despite Dream Trawler being a powerful card, Emeria’s Call has one large advantage over it. This is that it can double as a land, while also creating flying threats that can close out the game.

Omen of the Sun Azorius Control Challenger Deck 2021 Upgrade

We cut 2 Behold the Multiverse for 2 Omen of the Sun. There is already a lot of card advantage built into the main deck, so Behold the Multiverse is not needed. Additionally, Omen of the Sun interacts well with Yorion, and can be a backbreaking card for many aggressive decks.

The final non-land change to the main deck is removing 1 Shark Typhoon for 1 Midnight Clock. Midnight Clock is a great situational card against Rogues, which is one of your tougher matchups. This is because it shuffles your graveyard back into your library, making it much harder for Rogues to mill you. It can also be very powerful in control mirrors, as card advantage is crucial and Midnight Clock draws you an entire new hand later into the game.

Mana Base

Raugrin Triome Azorius Control Challenger Deck 2021 Upgrade

As for the mana base, we remove the Tranquil Coves, 3 Islands and 4 Plains.

These are replaced with 4 Hengegate Pathway, a dual land that can enter the battlefield untapped, and 4 Raugrin Triome, essentially a dual land that can cycle later on into the game. We then add 3 flex lands:

Sideboard

That’s it for the main deck changes. As for the sideboard, I’ve included the changes that Mythic Matt put in his sideboard but I would recommend building your own sideboard for the metagame you expect to face. If you want any help with that, let me know the decks you play against the most in the comment section of this article.

Flickering Out

Thanks for reading this Azorius Control Upgrade Guide. That’s all you need to know about upgrading Azorius Control on a budget and into its final form.

If you want to try the Azorius Control Challenger Deck yourself, you can get one on Amazon. Additionally, if you need some accessories for you new deck, you can find a selection of the best sleeves here and best deck boxes here.

You can also find all Challenger Decks 2021 in this article.

Happy controlling, and see you next time!

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