The best green/white deck archetypes

Selesnya (green/white) is one of many color combinations available in Magic: The Gathering. There’s a wide range of playstyle options in the color scheme, with unique options in just about every format from Commander to Pauper.

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Selesnya decks excel at building a board state, capable of flooding the battlefield with lands and creatures. Green and white complement each other by helping work around their weaknesses as solo colors. It’s easy to switch to Selesnya’s colors, allowing you to play your spells sooner. The combo’s biggest difficulty is keeping its creatures on the battlefield, as a tableau wipe can wipe out all of your work with a single card if you don’t have protection in hand.


7/7 Landing

Thanks to Selesnya’s access to green, Landing decks are fantastic due to the number of green spells available that allow you to put additional land on the battlefield. Both green and white have powerful cards with landing triggers, such as Scute Swarm, Felidar Retreat, and Emeria Angel.

Landing decks want to put multiple lands onto the battlefield per turn to continuously trigger your landing triggers. It’s not uncommon for Landfall decks to put together a giant battlefield of creatures thanks to just a few permanents on the battlefield that give you tokens whenever a land enters the battlefield. With landing cards giving +1/+1 counters and the ease with which green can trample creatures, you can easily win in a single turn.

6/7 sagas

Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty gave Selesnya access to a powerful sagas-style archetype. This is largely thanks to generic Saga support and the release of Satsuki, the Living Lore that allows you to cycle through Sagas and replay them for value later when it dies.

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Since sagas are enchantments, they can take advantage of Selesnya’s many enchantment gains to allow you to draw cards or reduce spells. This got an even bigger boost with the read-ahead mechanic introduced in Dominaria United, allowing you to easily jump to any chapter of a saga you want.

5/7 Counters

Selesnya has a wide selection of cards that are excellent for spreading +1/+1 counters and have payoffs for playing with this strategy. Humans are particularly strong at this, with the humans of Selesnya being one of the most powerful archetypes in Historic, thanks to how quickly the +1/+1 counters start spreading on them.

It’s also great in Commander, thanks to cards like Cathar’s Crusade, which take advantage of how easily Selesnya can flood the battlefield with creatures. It’s not uncommon for Counter decks to run a weak mana curve since weak creatures’ stat lines will continuously increase.

4/7 Auras

Selesnya is one of the best color combinations when it comes to auras. Some of the best are available in green and white, and the best gains are in these colors as well. Many auras in white can increase their stats based on the number of auras, such as All That Glitters and Ancestral Mask. Selesnya has the most rewards for enchantments, which all auras are.

Since Auras require you to cast a lot of cards, Selesnya cards like Satyr Enchanter and Mesa Enchantress allow you to immediately replace the Aura you just cast. Unlike other Voltron strategies, Aura decks can offer much more protection and card advantage than others cannot. Green has auras that can trample, making it much more difficult to block damage from a creature as it will be empowered by any auras attached to it.

3/7 Tokens

Selesnya cards are fantastic for bringing a large number of creature tokens onto the battlefield. Both green and white have cards that can easily bring out several in one turn, quickly flooding the battlefield with them. Playing tokens has many payoffs, allowing you to unleash many powerful attack triggers.

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Fantasy cards to include in Token decks include Rabble Rousing, Hour Of Reckoning, and Intangible Virtue. Token decks can spiral out of control incredibly quickly, and unless your opponent has a board handy, chances are they won’t be able to keep up with the onslaught of creatures. Both green and white have access to mass protection like Teferi’s Heroic Protection and Intervention, even allowing you to shield yourself from these threats. As long as your opponent(s) have nothing with trample, it gives you a wide battlefield of creatures to block with to keep your life safe.

2/7 life gain

A staple of low budget decks, Lifegain is one of Selesnya’s best archetypes and often what Lifegain decks tend to be the most, thanks to the number of wins it has. White has no shortage of effects that give you life whenever a creature enters the battlefield, which Selesnya can accomplish very easily.

By adding green to the white life gain mix, you gain a powerful ramp to ensure you can cast as many creatures as possible to ensure you get multiple triggers from your life gain permanents. Green also has many effects that benefit from having +1/+1 counters on creatures, which gives you the best life gains. It also becomes difficult to get yourself out of the game, as it’s not uncommon for life gain decks to reach more than double your starting life total, or even more.

1/7 Enchantments

What Selesnya excels the most at is using enchantments. This archetype has so many powerful payoffs and catalysts that it’s the color combination many people think of when thinking of a powerful enchantment-focused deck. Enchantress is a name given to creatures that gain effects when you cast an enchantment, which is almost exclusive to Selesnya.

Catalysts like Sythis, Harvest’s Hand, Enchantress’s Presence, and Mesa Enchantress are all great examples of Enchantress cards, with examples of payouts being Sigil of the Empty Throne, Hallowed Haunting, and Solitary Confinement which leverage all enchantments played. Enchantment decks often have a handful of cards through all of its draw triggers, allowing you to always have an answer or throw some fodder. There are many enchantment creatures, all of which count as enchantments to give you a presence on the battlefield and trigger all of your effects.

Next: Magic: The Gathering’s Most Powerful Selesnya Commanders

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