Last updated on December 22, 2022

Najeela, the Blade-Blossom - Illustration by Matt Stewart

Najeela, the Blade-Blossom | Illustration by Matt Stewart

Najeela, the Blade-Blossom has been sitting on my “to-build” list for a while. As a big fan of 5-color decks and aggro alike, Najeela has lots of things I’m looking for in a commander. There are a few types of builds you can make with Najeela, making it a great commander for deck for the tinkering type who likes to continuously update and edit decks.

There are literally thousands of deck builds for warrior tribal and Pod, the two most popular Najeela builds, so I decided to take this deck in a different direction. I wanted to lean into Najeela’s extra combat abilities.

If you’re looking for a fun aggro commander or a 5-color commander that doesn’t just fall back on legends or superfriends, Najeela, the Blade-Blossom is one of the best options. I’ve been having a lot of fun with this deck on Xmage, and highly encourage you to try it out. Let’s get into it!

The Deck

Blood Crypt - Illustration by Adam Paquette

Blood Crypt | Illustration by Adam Paquette

Commander (1)

Najeela, the Blade-Blossom

Planeswalker (1)

Zariel, Archduke of Avernus

Creature (27)

Shanna, Purifying Blade
Karlach, Fury of Avernus
Combat Celebrant
Moraug, Fury of Akoum
Champion of Lambholt
Aurelia, the Warleader
Faeburrow Elder
Jegantha, the Wellspring
Isshin, Two Heavens as One
Brutal Hordechief
Bramblewood Paragon
Herald of Dromoka
Grand Warlord Radha
Samut, Voice of Dissent
Wulfgar of Icewind Dale
Iroas, God of Victory
Mirri, Weatherlight Duelist
Lovisa Coldeyes
Rushblade Commander
Khenra Charioteer
Arashin Foremost
Thrasher Brute
Rhys the Redeemed
Surrak Dragonclaw
Kargan Warleader
Bloom Tender
Dryad of the Ilysian Grove

Instant (9)

Swords to Plowshares
Teferi’s Protection
Heroic Intervention
Path to Exile
Unbreakable Formation
Safe Passage
Secure the Wastes
Chance for Glory
Settle the Wreckage

Sorcery (11)

Relentless Assault
World at War
Seize the Day
Fury of the Horde
Rampant Growth
Triumph of the Hordes
Nature’s Lore
Austere Command
Toxic Deluge

Enchantment (6)

Aggravated Assault
Druids’ Repository
Breath of Fury
Prismatic Omen
Cryptolith Rite
Unnatural Growth

Artifact (9)

Timeless Lotus
Sol Ring
Chromatic Lantern
Arcane Signet
Chromatic Orrery
Gilded Lotus
Dolmen Gate
Coat of Arms
Lightning Greaves

Land (36)

Boseiju, Who Endures
Yavimaya, Cradle of Growth
Vault of the Archangel
Command Tower
Exotic Orchard
The World Tree
Mana Confluence
Bountiful Promenade
Spire Garden
Spectator Seating
Undergrowth Stadium
Rejuvenating Springs
Jetmir’s Garden
Ziatora’s Proving Ground
Temple Garden
Sacred Foundry
Stomping Ground
Breeding Pool
Blood Crypt
Windswept Heath
Wooded Foothills
Misty Rainforest
Polluted Delta
Savai Triome
Forest x3
Mountain x4
Plains x2

This deck is all about getting as many combat phases as possible in a single turn. Some cards allow you to get extra combats without paying mana, while others make it easy to activate Najeela, the Blade-Blossom’s ability. The more combats you can get in a turn, the more Warrior tokens you can generate with Najeela’s static ability. You’ll also likely be able to deal out a lot of damage if your opponents don’t have too many blockers.

Blockers are one of your biggest obstacles in a deck like this, so I’ve also included ways to help with that. There are ways to give your creatures double strike and deathtouch to help discourage opponents from blocking. Safe Passage and similar cards prevent your attacking creatures from taking damage, allowing you to attack with no worry of losing your board state.

The basic goal is to just keep beating down your opponents and growing your own board state until your opponents just can’t keep up.

The Commander

Najeela, the Blade-Blossom

Najeela, the Blade-Blossom is the cornerstone of this deck. It’s abilities work well together and are relatively inexpensive to get onto the field. The static ability is going to be a huge part of your strategy.

You’ll want to drop Najeela as early as you can and then start swinging with your commander and other warriors before your opponents have too many blockers. This helps you to establish a nice base of Warrior tokens before it becomes harder to attack.

Najeela’s activated ability is likely your most reliable source of extra combats since it’s stapled to your commander. It’s also extra impactful because not all extra combat spells grant your creatures as many abilities. That said, you have other ways to do what the deck wants before you get access to all five colors, so this deck a little quicker than some 5-color decks that need to race to establish their mana base.

Mana Ramp and Fixing

You can get a good start to the game before you have access to all five colors, but you’ll still want to get there eventually.

CultivateRampant Growth

Cultivate and Rampant Growth allow you to grab some extra lands to fill in the extra colors you need to activate Najeela, the Blade-Blossom’s ability.

Farseek and Nature’s Lore are especially helpful in this deck because they allow you to fetch dual and tri-lands with basic land types. Nature’s Lore is also great because the land you find doesn’t enter tapped, so it basically only costs one mana unless you’re fetching a tap land.

Cryptolith Rite

This deck makes lots of Warrior tokens, so Cryptolith Rite gives you another way to ramp as you make more creatures. They’ll tap for any color, so you won’t have to worry as much about your land base if you have a creature or two.

Dryad of the Ilysian GroveChromatic Lantern

Dryad of the Ilysian Grove can act both as mana ramp and mana fixing. You won’t have to worry about the color of your lands with this or Chromatic Lantern out. If you have five you can get yourself extra combats with Najeela.

Bloom TenderFaeburrow Elder

Bloom Tender is at the very least a dork for green mana. The more creatures you have on the field, the better it becomes. The same goes for Faeburrow Elder.

Najeela Fuel

Timeless LotusChromatic Orrery

Some cards in this deck can activate Najeela, the Blade-Blossom’s ability on their own. Timeless Lotus can be tapped each turn for an extra combat step and Chromatic Orrery can also tap to activate Najeela each turn, allowing you easier access to its ability by removing color restrictions.

Jegantha, the Wellspring

Jegantha, the Wellspring can be tapped each turn to activate Najeela’s extra combat ability and is also a creature. Your extra combat spells that untap all your creatures, not just the attacking ones, now essentially give you two extra combats when they untap Jegantha.

Druids' Repository

Possibly the most powerful way to activate Najeela is Druids’ Repository. If you have five creatures to attack with you can use this card to activate Najeela as many times as you want. Each time your five creatures attack, you get five counters. You can then remove counters to add a mana of each color. These infinite combats can lead to a win or at least allow you to take out any players without blockers.

Other Extra Combat Sources

Relentless Assault allows you an extra combat for less mana with fewer colors needed than Najeela, the Blade-Blossom’s ability. The same goes for Seize the Day which also benefits from having flashback. Fury of the Horde can be even cheaper since you can cast it without paying mana depending on your hand. With all these cards it’s important to sequence them correctly. To make the best use of them you’ll want to cast them on your second main phase after combat so you can attack once and then untap.

World at War

World at War is one of the best extra combat spells. It essentially gives you two extra combats for only five mana thanks to its rebound effect. Its wording makes it impossible to play at the wrong time during your turn.

Aggravated Assault

Aggravated Assault is a great alternative to Najeela’s ability if you don’t have access to all your colors. It can also just be nice to have as a backup if Najeela is removed.

Breath of Fury

Breath of Fury is a unique extra combat card. It gives you a way to theoretically get as many extra combats as times you can manage to get an attacker through, though you’ll have to be okay with losing your creatures.

Powerful Warriors

Moraug, Fury of AkoumCombat Celebrant

Most creatures in this deck are warriors to help synergize with Najeela’s static ability. Moraug, Fury of Akoum and Combat Celebrant are easy includes for this deck thanks to their extra combat abilities.

Brutal HordechiefThrasher Brute

Brutal Hordechief can drain a lot of life from your opponents thanks to the extra combats you’ll be taking. Thrasher Brute has a similar effect: whenever you attack with warriors you’ll also probably be making some with Najeela, the Blade-Blossom.

Rhys the Redeemed

Rhys the Redeemed creates more warriors for you, but it can also double up the Warrior tokens you create with Najeela. You can essentially quadruple the number you have that turn if Najeela is on the field if you double your warriors before combat and swing with them all.

Champion of Lambholt

Blockers are somewhat of an issue for this deck, so Champion of Lambholt can be a big help. Having this card out while you’re creating a lot of Warrior tokens buffs it up pretty quickly and make it difficult for your opponents to block any of your attackers.

Arashin Foremost

Though less powerful, Arashin Foremost can also help to discourage blockers on specific creatures.

Creature Upgrades

Giving your creatures buffs and abilities can be very helpful in a deck that uses a lot of creature tokens.

Lovisa Coldeyes and Kargan Warleader buff up your tokens and most of the creatures in your deck. Coat of Arms gives your creatures a huge boost, but it might not always be the best idea to play. If you’re going up against a sliver deck or another tribal deck, you may want to keep that one off the battlefield.

A lot of warriors in your deck give one another keyword abilities, like Herald of Dromoka and Rushblade Commander. Samut, Voice of Dissent and Surrak Dragonclaw give abilities to all your creatures, including your few non-warriors.

Unnatural Growth

Unnatural Growth is a very powerful way to buff your creatures in this deck. It stacks with other buffs but can also be difficult to remove for decks that aren’t running white or green.

Protecting Your Creatures

You need to be attacking pretty frequently with this deck for it to work. Use cards like Unbreakable Formation and Heroic Intervention to keep your creatures safe. Teferi’s Protection keeps your creatures safe, but it also stops you from losing life or any other type of permanent.

Safe Passage, Iroas, God of Victory, and Dolmen Gate prevent your attackers from taking damage. They can still be destroyed in other ways, but this lets you be a lot more confident when swinging out without worrying about blockers.

Removal Spells

Swords to PlowsharesPath to Exile

There isn’t too much targeted removal in this deck. Because it’s sparse, I chose Swords to Plowshares and Path to Exile since they hit any creature and won’t be stopped by indestructible.

Austere Command

You’ll want to be filling the board yourself, so board wipes are somewhat counterintuitive to your strategy. Flexible sweepers can be good for you to have. Austere Command can clear the board of noncreature permanents or just wipe bigger creatures while leaving your tokens untouched.

Toxic Deluge

Toxic Deluge can help you to pick and choose which creatures get wiped, potentially leaving you some of your more powerful creatures while taking out other threats.

Boseiju, Who Endures

Boseiju, Who Endures is a great form of artifact or enchantment removal. Using it as removal instead of a land is technically an ability and not a spell, so it’s all the more difficult to counter.

Finisher Spells

Triumph of the HordesCraterhoof Behemoth

Any deck that aims to build a wide board state can use Triumph of the Hordes as a great finisher. If you aren’t an infect fan then you may want to replace Triumph with something like Craterhoof Behemoth for a similar finishing effect.

Chance for Glory

Chance for Glory can be a good way to eke out a win if you just need to do a little bit of extra damage. It allows you to swing out and potentially create a lot of extra warriors since it gives your creatures indestructible. That could then lead to a win on your extra turn, but make sure you’ve done all your math correctly before casting this spell because it can be an embarrassing way to lose a game.

The Mana Base

A well-crafted land base is always important for a 5-color deck. This build includes a lot of shock lands and Triomes, like Sacred Foundry and Ziatora’s Proving Ground, so you can easily search up whatever color combinations you need. Red, green, and white are probably your most important colors, which is reflected in the choice of fetch lands like Windswept Heath and Wooded Foothills.

Bond lands are also great for 5-color commander decks because they usually come in untapped. Spire Garden, Undergrowth Stadium, and the rest help you to get all the colors you need to activate Najeela. You also have Command Tower and Mana Confluence that can tap for any color you might need.

The World Tree

The World Tree is another great form of mana fixing that kicks in later in the game, but it’s more difficult than remove than a card like Dryad of the Ilysian Grove.

As far as mana rocks go you have Arcane Signet and Chromatic Lantern to help access all five colors. Chromatic Orrery also does this and can also technically tap for or any five-mana combination you need.

The Strategy

The basic strategy for this deck is simple: build up your board state, take extra combats to deal lots of damage, and then use a finisher or an infinite combats to take out one or all of your opponents.

You want to get Najeela, the Blade-Blossom on the battlefield in the early game. The sooner the better because the longer it’s out the more Warrior tokens you can create. Those help you to build your board state more quickly while you’re also casting creatures.

As you move into the mid-game you have a few ways to take multiple combats on each of your turns. Pick and choose how you attack carefully and make sure you aren’t losing any key attackers. You want to stop attacking with Najeela itself just to keep your commander safe once you have enough other warriors. You may also want to target players who have decks that take longer to get going because you’re vulnerable to decks with very powerful creatures or a lot of removal.

You’ve ideally built up a big enough board or buffed your creatures enough that you no longer worry about blockers in the late game. That or you have Dolmen Gate or a powered-up Champion of Lambholt to keep your creatures from being destroyed in attacks. You can start getting around blockers and taking out the last bits of life your opponents have with your large board. Finishing cards like Triumph of the Hordes can also be a huge help in the endgame.

Combos and Interactions

It’s important to remember when they untap all creatures instead of just opposing creatures when using extra combat spells. If sequenced correctly you can alternate between Najeela, the Blade-Blossom’s ability and other extra combat spells with the help of Jegantha, the Wellspring. For example, with Breath of Fury on the board along with Najeela and Jegantha, you can take your first combat, tapping Jegantha to activate Najeela.

Jegantha won’t untap on the subsequent combat mode, but now you can attack with your creature enchanted with Breath of Fury. Jegantha untaps on the following combat step. You can now use Jegantha to activate Najeela again, giving you yet another combat without having to sacrifice another creature to Breath of Fury.

If you have Druids’ Repository, Najeela, the Blade-Blossom, and five other attackers, you can potentially take infinite combats. You’ll put five counters on Druids’ Repository when you swing with your five creatures.

You can use these five counters to activate Najeela’s ability and add an extra combat step. You can do it again during that next combat step and repeat ad nauseam as long as you don’t dip below five attackers each time.

Breath of FuryNajeela, the Blade-Blossom

You can also potentially get infinite combats if you have a creature enchanted with Breath of Fury and Najeela, the Blade-Blossom. Najeela makes you a new warrior each time you attack with one, giving you a new creature to attach Breath of Fury to after each combat.

You’ll never run out of creatures to sacrifice if you attack without an opponent blocking. If one of your opponents has no blockers, you can easily kill them with this infinite loop.

Budget Options

There aren’t a lot of very expensive singles in this deck, which can be good or bad. The upside is that no individual card is prohibitively expensive for you to grab, but it also makes it more difficult to make obvious cuts to trim the $600 price tag.

The most expensive card in the deck is Aggravated Assault, though you can find cheaper copies. The number of extra combat spells already in this deck lets you cut this to add a card that makes up for some things the deck lacks, like more card draw or removal.

Wooded Foothills is also expensive. You can easily replace it with Arid Mesa with so many color combinations covered by tri-lands and other fetch lands, which is about half the price. Polluted Delta is an expensive fetch land you can probably just cut and replace with a basic since it fetches some of your less important colors.

Other Builds

The most popular Najeela, the Blade-Blossom build is warrior tribal. You can include a lot of the same cards that you already have in this build, but you’ll probably want more creatures and fewer extra combat spells. One great addition is Winota, Joiner of Forces because there’s a pretty good split between human and non-human warrior creatures.

You can also add more tribal support cards like Door of Destinies and Kindred Discovery. Kindred Dominance is also a great board wipe since most of your creatures are the same type.

One of the less popular deck options that I find very interesting is a goading and forced combat build. By forcing your opponents to attack each other with cards like Disrupt Decorum, they weaken each other’s life totals and boards and leave you to make the most of Najeela’s extra combat ability.

You can include all the best cards from this archetype since you have all five colors. Thantis, the Warweaver and Gahiji, Honored One are both great options for this deck. Kazuul, Tyrant of the Cliffs is a great way to keep yourself safe when you can’t goad your opponents, and it helps to build your board state in several ways.

Commanding Conclusion

Jegantha, the Wellspring - Illustration by Chris Rahn

Jegantha, the Wellspring | Illustration by Chris Rahn

Najeela, the Blade-Blossom is a very fun commander. Whether you try out this deck or explore one of the other build options, I hope I’ve at least inspired you to give Najeela a chance. This deck can be a lot of fun and is powerful without being overly competitive.

Are there any cards you’d swap into this deck? What strategies do you think work well with extra combats? Let me know in the comments below or over on the Draftsim Twitter.

Thank you for reading and I hope to see you in the next one!

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