Through the The Brothers' War set, Wizards of the Coast went all out with soldier tribal, transforming it into one of the greatest MTG Arena decks.
The Brothers' War (BRO) set includes 20 soldier cards, as well as cards like Skrelv, Defector Mite, and Myrel, Glory Dominus. Meme decks can enjoy double tokens with Mondrak, Glory Dominus, and Myrel, Shield of Argive while competitive builds are putting Skrelv, Defector Mite to work.
How to Play MTG Azorius Soldier Deck
The release of Phyrexia: All Will Be One brought about a few minor changes to the way players were constructing the Azorius Solder deck, especially in the Traditional best-of-three style. Skrelv, Defector Mite was added to help push deadly damage with an aggressive opening, and the Uncommon Jawbone Duelist was slotted in for a more aggressive approach.
In the Standard meta, there were a variety of different strategies for playing soldier tribal, from hardcore aggressive tactics to Tempo. Most best-of-one Azorius Soldier decks following the release of ONE are strictly aggressive, while the Traditional Constructed players are mashing Aggro and Tempo together through the use of the sideboard.
Players will want to think about establishing an early board state with a strong curve. Valiant Veteran pumps the team. Skrelv, Defector Mite is not an early drop unless matched up against another creature-heavy build. The goal is to go wide as quickly as possible while dealing enough damage that opponents can't recover.
An Azorius Soldier deck by SMann2.0 finished in the top eight at the MTGO Standard Challenge, featuring an aggressive main deck and a sideboard that might go toward a more Tempo pace. There were also two copies of Skrelv, Defector Mite, and two copies of Dennick, Pious Apprentice.
While a go-wide board ends games, most of the main deck remained the same, relying on Brutal Cathar for early game disruption and an aggressive start that most opponents can't recover from. Thalia, Guardian of Thraben ensures opponents are punished for running cheap removal and non-creature spells.
The sideboard, however, contained a large amount of non-creature spells. Enchantments are still present in the Standard meta, which Destroy Evil and Loran of the Third Path can deal with. And with the addition of several powerful planeswalkers in the ONE set, Lantern Flare was apparently able to deal with them.
StefanoJRS provided a similar version of Azorius Soldier, which included three copies of Skrelv, Defector Mite, and only two Brutal Cathar.
Two Anointed Peacekeepers and two Kayla's Reconstruction were included in the sideboard as well as counterspells and Enchantment/Artifact hate.
CovertGoBlue "CBG" modified the Azorius Soldier deck prior to the release of ONE, using several Mono-White Aggro cards that were already established in the Standard meta prior to the release of BRO.
The CBG version is brutally fast, going all out on creatures. It's the most popular version within the best-of-one Standard meta.
Skrelv and Defector Mite have impacted the Standard Traditional meta, but have received mixed reviews in best-of-one. I think at least two copies are worth playing in a best-of-one Azorius Soldier deck, especially when combined with Serra Paragon.
Thalia is effective during the early game, but fails to affect the board state during the later stages of a match. Serra Paragon is not a soldier but can reanimate every card in the Azorius Soldier deck. Two copies of Loran's Escape protect Serra Paragon or are used on a Brutal Cathar to prevent an opponent from regaining a key card that turn.
Following the release of ONE, Azorius Soldier meta deck entries were updated on February 14 9am CT.