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By: Kumagoro42, Gianluca Aicardi
Sep 18 2013 9:14am
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 Welcome back to the wonderful world of Commander multiplayer, as told by SUNCOM, the PRE I run every Sunday at 15:00 GMT (more info about it here). You can read about the Origin of It All in the first article of this series.

 So, Theros is fully spoiled now, therefore we know all the new legends we're going to get. There's a grand total of 13 of them, 8 regular Legendary creatures plus the 5 Gods (for comparison, Innistrad just had 4, and Return to Ravnica 5). Meet the commanders of tomorrow! (Tomorrow being next month).





 My favorite Gods as commanders (but also in general) are definitely Thassa and Erebos. Their "enchantment sides" are the only ones that don't need creatures in play to be good. But I think we'll see Commander decks for all the Gods, out of sheer fascination. As for the others, I don't know that many of those will be played as commanders. Hythonia might, but I think one would still be better off with Visara. The green ones are underwhelming, Anax and Cymede not particularly apt to be exploited in a commander capacity, the very flavorful Triad of Fates a bit clunky, and Tymaret is far from the best sacrificial commander (he doesn't even say "all opponents"). Daxos might see play, despite being too random, because those stealing effects are always popular (see Thada below). And Medomai, sure, we'll see her. But boy, the guy who plays that deck is not going to be the most loved at the table, isn't it?

 But enough with the near future, let's talk about the recent past. Of SUNCOM!

 TODAY'S COMMANDERS (click to go directly to the decklists): Kresh the Bloodbraided, Jhoira of the Ghitu, Thada Adel, Acquisitor, Mishra, Artificer Prodigy, Prime Speaker Zegana.


 Let's rewind back to two weeks ago, when longtime Commander player Silvos der Benny took his second SUNCOM win (since event 16) over a particularly fierce competition, backed up by Kresh the Bloodbraided.

by Silvos der Benny - 1st place in SUNCOM 39
1 Birds of Paradise
1 Bloodgift Demon
1 Briarhorn
1 Caldera Hellion
1 Cloudthresher
1 Corpsejack Menace
1 Crowned Ceratok
1 Elvish Harbinger
1 Eternal Witness
1 Fleshbag Marauder
1 Imperial Recruiter
1 Ingot Chewer
1 Joraga Treespeaker
1 Oracle of Mul Daya
1 Rune-Scarred Demon
1 Sakura-Tribe Elder
1 Scavenging Ooze
1 Shriekmaw
1 Slum Reaper
1 Spitebellows
1 Woodfall Primus
1 Wrecking Ogre
22 cards

Other Spells
1 Abrupt Decay
1 Ancient Grudge
1 Armed/Dangerous
1 Auger Spree
1 Bear Umbra
1 Blasphemous Act
1 Chain Reaction
1 Chromatic Lantern
1 Cultivate
1 Decree of Pain
1 Dreadbore
1 Explosive Vegetation
1 Fatal Frenzy
1 Flesh/Blood
1 Flowstone Slide
1 Garruk Wildspeaker
1 Gilded Lotus
1 Grab the Reins
1 Harvester of Souls
1 Hunter's Insight
1 Kodama's Reach
1 Loxodon Warhammer
1 Mizzium Mortars
1 Molten Disaster
1 Momentous Fall
1 Nameless Inversion
1 Overwhelming Forces
1 Phyrexian Arena
1 Price of Glory
1 Primal Command
1 Psychotic Fury
1 Putrefy
1 Reanimate
1 Sangrite Backlash
1 Seize the Day
1 Skeletal Scrying
1 Sol Ring
1 Soul's Fire
1 Soul's Majesty
1 Swiftfoot Boots
1 Violent Ultimatum
1 Vraska the Unseen
42 cards
1 Blood Crypt
1 Bojuka Bog
1 Command Tower
1 Evolving Wilds
1 Golgari Guildgate
1 Golgari Rot Farm
1 Gruul Guildgate
1 Gruul Turf
1 Highland Weald
1 Homeward Path
1 Kazandu Refuge
1 Mosswort Bridge
1 Mountain
1 Mountain
1 Overgrown Tomb
1 Rakdos Carnarium
1 Rakdos Guildgate
1 Reliquary Tower
1 Shizo, Death's Storehouse
1 Spinerock Knoll
1 Temple of the False God
1 Terramorphic Expanse
1 Thawing Glaciers
1 Tresserhorn Sinks
6 Forest
3 Swamp
2 Mountain
35 cards

Kresh the Bloodbraided


 The runner-ups: raf.azevedo's Maelstrom Wanderer deck (already a finalist the previous week), _BIG_BROTHERS_'s classic one-man-deck Rafiq of the Many, and Rufa with this Jhoira of the Ghitu build:


 Our lovely Izzet redhead is all about cheating big stuff directly into play (in due time), so we can admire here quite a collection of scary red/blue/colorless things for Jhoira to play with, from Dragon Tyrant and Decree of Annihilation to Roil Elemental and of course a few mandatory Eldrazi (strangely, no sign of any version of Niv-Mizzet, though. No love for the Dracogenius?).


 Three finalists made last week's event's crucial table: to beat the uber-powerful (and already featured) Animar, Soul of Elements build by Zarcron was this neat deck piloted by justcanceled and lead by that adorable rapscallion Thada Adel, Acquisitor.


 The rhyme and reason of this deck is easily explained: people really, really love to play with artifacts in Commander. And our devious little Merfolk punishes them with her own brand of thievery. Insane card advantage is served. This is also an occasion to compile the quick list of the Splashy Creatures (Titan-Mana or More) You Want in a Noncreature-Based Monoblue Build.


justcanceled included these...

 Consecrated Sphinx is of course a no-brainer as she's just one of the top creatures in the whole game. Jin-Gitaxias is also a favorite, despite being dangerous (but then you just have to include Reliquary Tower to avoid nightmares of decking yourself). Then the blue entry in the Primordial cycle is a good one, becoming excellent in multiplayer like all its brothers. Finally, I never really liked Frost Titan, but it's still good, I guess. I would prefer Phyrexian Ingester in this spot (more permanent solution to a problem), and probably even another card-drawing Sphinx, like Sphinx of Magosi. Also worth of a mention: Arcanis the Omnipotent, Draining Whelk, and Keiga, the Tide Star. And in monoblue, Memnarch is always tempting.


...I would have included some of these, too.

As for the colorless ones, we have Steel Hellkite here, which is strongest that's generally accounted for, but justcanceled didn't find room for Duplicant and Wurmcoil Engine, and those two to me are staples in any Commander deck whatsoever.


Never without. (When are we gonna get that sweet Duplicant from Commander's Arsenal online?)

 Here's another unusual general shared the honor to lose to Thada: none else that the legendary troubled Mishra, Artificer Prodigy, as envisioned here by reigning Champion of Champions Frenzy277.

by Frenzy277 - Finalist in SUNCOM 40
1 Drift of Phantasms
1 Ethereal Usher
1 Etherium Sculptor
1 Frogmite
1 Memnite
1 Ornithopter
1 Phyrexian Walker
1 Riddlesmith
1 Shield Sphere
1 Snapcaster Mage
1 Vedalken Archmage
11 cards

Other Spells
1 Aether Spellbomb
1 Basalt Monolith
1 Blood Funnel
1 Cabal Ritual
1 Chain of Vapor
1 Chromatic Sphere
1 Chromatic Star
1 Chrome Mox
1 Cloud Key
1 Coalition Relic
1 Conjurer's Bauble
1 Dark Ritual
1 Darkwater Egg
1 Demonic Tutor
1 Desperate Ritual
1 Diabolic Tutor
1 Dimir Signet
1 Elsewhere Flask
1 Eye of Ramos
1 Fabricate
1 Fellwar Stone
1 Future Sight
1 Gitaxian Probe
1 Grim Monolith
1 Helm of Awakening
1 Hurkyl's Recall
1 Imperial Seal
1 Izzet Keyrune
1 Izzet Signet
1 Krark-Clan Ironworks
1 Lim-Dul's Vault
1 Lotus Petal
1 Mana Crypt
1 Mana Vault
1 Mind Stone
1 Mox Diamond
1 Mox Opal
1 Mystical Tutor
1 Necrogen Spellbomb
1 Nihil Spellbomb
1 Null Profusion
1 Phyrexian Furnace
1 Power Artifact
1 Prismatic Lens
1 Prophetic Prism
1 Pyrite Spellbomb
1 Rakdos Keyrune
1 Rakdos Signet
1 Relic of Progenitus
1 Scrabbling Claws
1 Semblance Anvil
1 Sensei's Divining Top
1 Shadowblood Egg
1 Sol Ring
1 Talisman of Dominance
1 Tendrils of Agony
1 Time Spiral
1 Tsabo's Web
1 Vampiric Tutor
1 Voltaic Key
1 Wheel of Fortune
1 Yawgmoth's Will
62 cards
1 Ancient Tomb
1 Badlands
1 Blood Crypt
1 Bloodstained Mire
1 Cascade Bluffs
1 City of Brass
1 Command Tower
1 Dragonskull Summit
1 Drowned Catacomb
1 Flooded Strand
1 Graven Cairns
1 Island
1 Marsh Flats
1 Mishra's Workshop
1 Mountain
1 River of Tears
1 Scalding Tarn
1 Steam Vents
1 Sulfurous Springs
1 Sunken Ruins
1 Swamp
1 Underground River
1 Underground Sea
1 Vault of Whispers
1 Volcanic Island
1 Watery Grave
26 cards

Mishra, Artificer Prodigy


 Remember Mishra? Brother of Urza? Well, Time Spiral did. I've a feeling this guy was important at some point. And he cared about artifacts, maybe? (And yeah, it's a very odd choice in a singleton format, given his ability).


 Eh, what about it? Too bad this time the damn client failed everyone I had asked for a juicy replay (too bad really, because there were a couple of very fun tables to feature!), and I didn't play myself in either event, so we're left with nothing to show. Hopefully we'll be luckier next time. Here's another deck for you, instead, a fun and occasionally lethal Prime Speaker Zegana build I've been played a lot recently, and that's based on, and deeply committed to Primal Surge (so, nothing else is there that's not a permanent):

by _Kumagoro_
1 Acidic Slime
1 Avenger of Zendikar
1 Beguiler of Wills
1 Consecrated Sphinx
1 Craterhoof Behemoth
1 Diluvian Primordial
1 Djinn of Wishes
1 Duplicant
1 Elvish Piper
1 Eternal Witness
1 Fauna Shaman
1 Fierce Empath
1 Forgotten Ancient
1 Genesis
1 Glen Elendra Archmage
1 Glissa Sunseeker
1 Hornet Queen
1 Kamahl, Fist of Krosa
1 Master Biomancer
1 Master of the Wild Hunt
1 Momir Vig, Simic Visionary
1 Mystic Snake
1 Oracle of Mul Daya
1 Phyrexian Ingester
1 Progenitor Mimic
1 Scavenging Ooze
1 Silklash Spider
1 Solemn Simulacrum
1 Sylvan Primordial
1 Terastodon
1 Trinket Mage
1 Vigor
1 Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger
1 Wood Elves
1 Woodfall Primus
1 Wurmcoil Engine
1 Yavimaya Dryad
37 cards

Other Spells
1 Akroma's Memorial
1 Asceticism
1 Awakening Zone
1 Caged Sun
1 Control Magic
1 Emerald Medallion
1 Garruk Wildspeaker
1 Garruk, Caller of Beasts
1 Garruk, Primal Hunter
1 Gilded Lotus
1 Jace Beleren
1 Lurking Predators
1 Mana Crypt
1 Mana Reflection
1 Mana Vault
1 Primal Surge
1 Simic Signet
1 Skullclamp
1 Sol Ring
1 Survival of the Fittest
1 Sylvan Library
1 Tamiyo, the Moon Sage
1 Tezzeret the Seeker
1 Thran Dynamo
1 Umezawa's Jitte
1 Volition Reins
1 Wild Pair
27 cards
1 Academy Ruins
1 Breeding Pool
1 Command Tower
1 Hinterland Harbor
1 Minamo, School at Water's Edge
1 Misty Rainforest
1 Oran-Rief, the Vastwood
1 Reflecting Pool
1 Reliquary Tower
1 Simic Growth Chamber
1 Strip Mine
1 Tectonic Edge
1 Thespian's Stage
1 Treetop Village
1 Tropical Island
1 Verdant Catacombs
1 Vesuva
1 Windswept Heath
1 Yavimaya Coast
1 Yavimaya Hollow
6 Island
9 Forest
35 cards

Prime Speaker Zegana


 And here's a quick deck tech for it.

Utility Lands 

Academy Ruins Minamo, School at Water's Edge Oran-Rief, the Vastwood Treetop Village Yavimaya Hollow  Strip Mine Tectonic Edge Vesuva Thespian's Stage

 Academy Ruins, Minamo, School at Water's Edge, Oran-Rief, the Vastwood, Treetop Village, Yavimaya Hollow, Reliquary Tower, Strip Mine, Tectonic Edge, Vesuva, Thespian's Stage: Just an essential selection of good stuff lands with blue or green activations, plus the all-time classic land destroyers (I don't currently own Wasteland, so Tectonic Edge it is), and land clones. 

Mana Ramp 

Mana Crypt Mana Vault Sol Ring Emerald Medallion Simic Signet Thran Dynamo Gilded Lotus Caged Sun Mana Reflection Wood Elves Yavimaya Dryad Solemn Simulacrum Oracle of Mul Daya Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger Awakening Zone Garruk Wildspeaker

 Mana Crypt, Mana Vault, Sol Ring, Emerald Medallion, Simic Signet, Thran Dynamo, Gilded Lotus, Caged Sun, Mana Reflection, Wood Elves, Yavimaya Dryad, Solemn Simulacrum, Oracle of Mul Daya, Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger, Awakening Zone, Garruk Wildspeaker: I always include a lot of ramp in my builds, because I like playing crazy stuff and I like to playing it asap. In this case, the challenge was avoiding all the nonpermanent options, but green and artifacts are so filled of great alternatives that it's not even funny.

Card Drawing/Tutoring

Skullclamp Jace Beleren  Garruk, Primal Hunter Tamiyo, the Moon Sage Tezzeret the Seeker Consecrated Sphinx Sylvan Library, Survival of the Fittest Fauna Shaman Momir Vig, Simic Visionary Trinket Mage Fierce Empath Eternal Witness Genesis

 Skullclamp, Jace Beleren, Garruk, Caller of Beasts, Garruk, Primal Hunter, Tezzeret the Seeker, Tamiyo, the Moon Sage, Consecrated Sphinx, Sylvan Library, Survival of the Fittest, Fauna Shaman, Momir Vig, Simic Visionary, Trinket Mage, Fierce Empath, Eternal Witness, Genesis: This section was harder to do only with permanents, but there's interesting stuff here. Of course, the two Garruks and Tamiyo do more than just drawing cards (while Tezzeret is mainly just there to fetch mana rocks), but that's the reason I put them in the deck to begin with, so that's the section where they belong. Eternal Witness and Genesis are technically recursion, but what's recursion if not a limited form of tutoring that only involves the graveyard?

Cheaters into Play

Elvish Piper Djinn of Wishes Lurking Predators Wild Pair

 Elvish Piper, Djinn of Wishes, Lurking Predators, Wild Pair: This section usually features a lot more things in Simic decks, but they're mostly nonpermanent (like Chord of Calling or Natural Order or Bribery). However, with all the permanents in the deck, of which some are expensive stuff, including at least a few of cheaters seemed necessary.


Umezawa's Jitte Duplicant Phyrexian Ingester Master of the Wild Hunt Silklash Spider Glen Elendra Archmage Mystic Snake Acidic Slime Glissa Sunseeker Sylvan Primordial Terastodon Woodfall Primus Scavenging Ooze Control Magic Volition Reins Beguiler of Wills

 Umezawa's Jitte, Duplicant, Phyrexian Ingester, Master of the Wild Hunt, Silklash Spider, Glen Elendra Archmage, Mystic Snake, Acidic Slime, Glissa Sunseeker, Sylvan Primordial, Terastodon, Woodfall Primus, Scavenging Ooze, Control Magic, Beguiler of Wills, Volition Reins: Neither blue nor green are very good at dealing with creatures, especially if you take the nonpermanent spells out of the equations, so we have to make do. The stealing effects blue provides are a good alternative, anyway.

Creature Boost

Akroma's Memorial Asceticism Craterhoof Behemoth Forgotten Ancient Kamahl, Fist of Krosa Master Biomancer Vigor

 Akroma's Memorial, Asceticism, Craterhoof Behemoth, Forgotten Ancient, Kamahl, Fist of Krosa, Master Biomancer, Vigor: Some of these are just classic (or instant classic, like Master Bionancer), but the really essential thing here is Akroma's Memorial, which allows for an immediate win after Primal Surge has gone off (one could use Concordant Crossroads instead, but if we're going to play it out of a Surge, then why bother?)


Avenger of Zendikar Hornet Queen Diluvian Primordial  Wurmcoil Engine

 Avenger of Zendikar, Hornet Queen, Diluvian Primordial, Progenitor Mimic, Wurmcoil Engine: Just a few versatile face-smashers to round the numbers and look good in a fight. Plus, Zegana wants big bodies to exploit. 

Combo Pieces

Primal Surge

 Primal Surge: The one and only one-card-combo. Admittedly, it only really happens once every five games or so. But the deck is still fun and Zegana is a very solid card advantage general if you like creature-based decks.

 And that's it. See you in the SUNCOM room next Sunday at 15:00 GMT, and with the Chronicles here on PureMTGO in two weeks! Commander ho!