This is a tournament-level combo control deck. It is designed to win in high-pressure environments by withstanding incoming disruption, suppressing opponents, and using efficient and powerful combos.

This deck is built around a network of synergies; the combos have interchangeable pieces, and the cards that support them can be used outside of the combo as general utility cards. Because the number of combo-only cards is minimized, the deck's resilience is increased, and the odds of drawing dead cards are decreased.


The Primer


Comments, suggestions, criticisms, and ratings are all welcome!

When recommending cards, please remember that this deck is tournament-oriented and must only contain the most efficient and powerful cards available. Please do not suggest casual or otherwise nonviable cards for inclusion. Also, please keep in mind that the deck is based around a network of synergies; combo-related cards should be useful outside of their combos.

Comments View Archive

DaMiner says... #1

Thinks this deck is an interesting one.

Sees price tag.


October 25, 2016 11:52 a.m.

Thoughts on Manifold Insights? Digs 10 cards, and since this is a multiplayer oriented deck, the more opponents you have, the more cards you get.

October 28, 2016 1:04 p.m.

Wouldn't you want Vedalken Orrery since about 1/3 of your spells are sorcery speed? I know that Leyline of Anticipation and Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir are hard to cast but this is colourless.

November 1, 2016 9:07 a.m.

knight611 says... #4

I cant't speak for Epoch. From personal experience with my own damia deckLeyline of Anticipationhas a chance of not costing anything at all. Also not super critical most of the time. I have considered cutting it for sometime but it some how manages to show up during an important game turn zero and the advantage is just so good when it happens.Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir is more used for locking out your opponents from stopping your combos. the creature flash is helpful but more of sweet icing than cake.

November 1, 2016 6:46 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #5

@Raging_Squiggle: It doesn't really impress me. For , I get the worst three nonland cards out of my top ten at sorcery speed. It's not the worst thing in the world, but it isn't crazy good, either.

@Simon_Williamson: Vedalken Orrery was cut from the deck a while ago. As knight611 described, both Leyline of Anticipation and Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir have other advantages that make them effective. Vedalken Orrery will always cost , and it will always come down at sorcery speed.

I'm actually even thinking about cutting Leyline of Anticipation because the deck space could go to something more impactful.

November 1, 2016 7:17 p.m.

knight611 says... #6

I am in a similar spot. With the new Partner mechanic I have been considering cutting for a dual commander set up with Ikra Shidiqi, the Usurper and Thrasios, Triton Hero. It give me some nice options with my mana combo and a nice way to use extra mana is needed on other turns for some minor card advantage. also gives me a chance at getting some life back if needed on attacks if relevant.

November 1, 2016 8:11 p.m.

enpc says... #7

knight611: You'd be better off splashing white and using Ravos, Soultender over Ikra as the recursion seems much more relevant. Then you'd also gain access to Swords to Plowshares, Anguished Unmaking and Knight of the Reliquary.

November 1, 2016 9:50 p.m.

knight611 says... #8

wow thank you i didnt really think about him. My deck isnt very creature heavy. I liked Ikra because sometimes i can go alittle overboard trying to keep the deck running and have killed myself once or twice. However Knight of the Reliquary is really interesting.

November 1, 2016 10:15 p.m.

knight611 says... #9

@ Epochalyptik @enpcMight have talked about his before color me curious.

What are you thoughts on Panharmonicon in place of Leyline of Anticipation? Panharmonicon definitely lets you abuse some already strong abilities. It is slow and has no chance of a turn zero which sucks. I think it is a strong contender. It turns Venser, Shaper Savant into a repeatable counter/bounce spell with it out. Snapcaster Mage being able to target 2 counter spells in the yard.

What about Eldritch Evolution? Being able to convert any creature you might have on the board to another lets you be rather flexible to the board state. It is sorcery sadly but i don't think that should disqualify it as something to consider. Side note looks to work well with Panharmonicon.

November 9, 2016 7:19 a.m.

knight611 I beleive Survival of the Fittest would be a better card than Eldritch Evolution.

November 9, 2016 7:28 a.m.

Emzed says... #11

I don't think Panharmonicon is great here. It has some solid interactions, including comboing with Palinchron, but the overall number of cards in the deck that syngergyze with it is way too low.

November 9, 2016 9:31 a.m.

knight611 says... #12

@Simon_Williamson: please explain why. Survival force you to discard something you havent even got the benefit out of yet. Eldritch Evolutionlets you take advantage of being able to use the creature first then move on to something else. I have used survival before and it felt lacking when i wanted to use the creature too.

@emzed: Curious Leyline of Anticipation is in a similar spot if you think about it. It doesnt interate with to many things that you want. Does make things very easy but only really worth playing turn zero for free. Can also be used as a Force of Will discard.

November 9, 2016 3:02 p.m.

Survival is sustainable and constant. It turns any creature you draw into exactly what you need.

November 9, 2016 3:16 p.m.

Emzed says... #14

The difference is: Leyline is great with the one card you have access to every game, which is Damia. Also, while not directly affecting your instants, it allows you to keep mana open instead of casting sorceries in your mainphase. This gives you flexibility and allows you to use your mana efficiently, which actually means countermagic etc becomes better.
With Panharmonicon, i feel the risk is much higher that the card does very little or nothing at all. As you pointed out, it can never come into play free like Leyline, and it's not a blue card for FoW or Misdirection either. The number of cards in this deck that do anything at all with Panharmonicon is somewhere around 10, and it's not like an extra trigger off of Eternal Witness or Snapcaster Mage is even something you need all the time. It has the potential to be legitimately great with Venser, Shaper Savant, Rune-Scarred Demon or Palinchron, but that doesn't seem like enough to me.

November 9, 2016 3:32 p.m.

enpc says... #15

Panharmonicon feels really underwhelming here. It only interacts with all of 6 cards in the deck. Plus at 4 mana, its quite awkward on the curve.

The interaction with Palinchron is cute, however typically you're deploying from TaN at which point you can just deploy the other half of the combo at the same time (via DEN).

The other thing about leyline is that Epoch has stated that unless it's in his opening hand, he barely ever plays it. And at least leyline can be pitched to Force of Will and Misdirection.

As for Survival of the Fittest and Eldritch Evolution, both seem not good here. The creature count in the deck is too low for survival and it means that you have to not play your mana works so you can pitch them while evolution struggles in that none of the dorks/support creatures have a high enough CMC that you can turn them into a combo piece.

Honestly, if you're going to add anything else, you'd be better off just adding Grim Tutor as another way to get TaN (or anything in the deck).

November 9, 2016 4:55 p.m.

Dankey says... #16

If you're removing Leyline maybe consider including Living Wish and developing a wishboard? :D Sounds like a solid improvement imho.

November 10, 2016 4:02 a.m.

slavenh says... #17

I replaced Leyline with Kiora's Follower because it's rarely useful and untapping permanents works really well with artifact mana and bouncelands.

I've been playing this deck for a while, apart from some really expensive cards, and it works really well. Considering Survival, Eldritch Evolution and other cards that are coming up in discussion lately doesn't make sense if you play the deck for a while and see how the whole thing works.

For whatever you remove from the current build, its replacement should be damn good within this deck. I'd first replace a card I don't like (or can't afford) with something from the Maybeboard instead of random cards that work in other decks.

November 10, 2016 6:52 a.m.

slavenh I wasn't suggesting survival just that it was better than E-Evolution in most cases.

November 10, 2016 7:44 a.m.

slavenh says... #19

I didn't mean specifically Survival, though you're right - it's better than Evolution if you want to play that sort of effect in this deck. There has also been talk of partner commanders and such...

People are, of course, free to play what they want, but Dominus is meant to be a highly competitive engine with a narrow focus. Replace Damia and it will feel like a race car driven by two old, stoned hippies. :)

November 11, 2016 6:05 a.m.

enpc says... #20

slavenh: That's not entirely true. Damia is an engine however she also acts as a figurehead, only being played under certain circumstances. I would wager that she spend more time off the battlefield than on it.

Also, the comment about running partner commanders was not saying just replace Damia (and another card) with the two partners. You'd obviously have to rebuild the deck, even if you were going to run the same combo shell.

November 11, 2016 11:21 a.m.

Stillgone says... #21

Which partner commanders would be considered?

November 15, 2016 1:44 p.m.

enpc says... #22

Personally I would recommend Thrasios, Triton Hero and either Tymna the Weaver or Ravos, Soultender. This gives you the ability to splash white for a few really good removal and utility spells.

Also, Epochalyptik, what're you're thoughts on Dramatic reversal + Isochron Scepter? I know there was discussion a while ago about scepter by itself and that it didn't offer enough value to be worthwhile, however with the printing of Dramatic reversal it forms an infinite mana combo which can be deployed very early. It would probably mean tweaking your ramp suite slightly to accommodate however I don't the the changes would affect the deck negatively overall.

November 15, 2016 5:14 p.m.

clynn3 says... #23

Have you tried birthing pod?

Why not dryad arbor?

December 1, 2016 8:24 p.m.

Regarding Panharmonicon vs Leyline of Anticipation, I agree with most of the above comments; the latter is better. It's relevant to more cards and has the advantage of potentially being free or powering a Force of Will.

That said, I agree that Leyline of Anticipation could probably be replaced for Kiora's Follower, which is more consistently relevant.

Regarding Eldritch Evolution vs Survival of the Fittest, the latter is, again, better. When thinking about whether you get value out of a card in your hand, it's a mistake to assume that value comes only from playing them. If I have the option to discard a card to a Survival of the Fittest or a Force of Will, I would still get value out of that card by doing so. I'm using it to make an effective play. This deck ultimately cares about being effective and efficient, not about making sure every permanent gets its time to shine on the battlefield. I would pitch a Snapcaster Mage to a Force of Will if it were the most effective use of those cards and a necessary one.

I still haven't gotten around to evaluating the partner commanders. Magic is very low in my list of life priorities right now (and has been for a while). You're all welcome to make cases for which are worth considering. I wonder, too, about the potential to use the partner mechanic to splash for some other colors, but I don't know if that's really an evolution of this deck so much as the creation of a new deck.

@enpc: I still think of Isochron Scepter as a clunky utility card. I don't think Dramatic reversal really changes that, especially given that the two cards would need to be individually tutored in order to be deployable as a wincon (and, on top of that, it only forms a wincon if I have enough mana rocks and/or land untappers to abuse it). Everything about it seems too situational.

@clynn3: Birthing Pod doesn't really seem like an effective addition to the deck. Given that it only works at sorcery speed, and that the creature suite isn't really designed to work on a curve-matters basis, I feel like it would be clunky and underwhelming. I'd rather have something that's more relevant and more powerful.

Dryad Arbor used to be in the deck, but I ended up cutting it. The only real reason to run it was the opportunity to use Green Sun's Zenith to fetch it for X=0, but I found over time that this interaction just couldn't justify running a land that suffered from summoning sickness and vulnerability to sweepers.

December 3, 2016 6:27 p.m.

Congrats on 900 upvotes!

December 3, 2016 6:31 p.m.

What are you're thoughts on Jace, the Mind Sculptor , and Wall of Rootsin the deck? I like him, but on the same note, I can't justify running him in my deck.Wall of roots i like because it has pseudo-haste, but i don't like the 5-use limit you have on it.

December 11, 2016 10:19 p.m.

Eiyros says... #27

I know this is a silly question, but what's the code for adding an upvote button to the deck description?

December 21, 2016 2:19 a.m.

JaysomeDecks says... #28

Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger is another backup combo piece with Palinchron. It is also tutorable with Tooth and Nail, and makes your opponents pay on their next turn if they do manage to disrupt it. With your mana ramp it is also viable just to increase your mana base while hindering your opponents. But primarially, it would be there for the backup combo.

December 23, 2016 11:28 p.m.

enpc says... #29

JaysomeDecks: Vorinclex is a really clunky card here. Outside of combo, 8 mana is a lot to spend to cast a creature that's probably just going to eat removal immediate (if it even resolves). Not to mention with the abundance of rocks and forks, It's not as punishing as you might originally think.

Inside of combo, the cards are usually deployed through Tooth and Nail. The hardest part of the whole combo is getting TaN to resolve. Once this happens, generally you're home free. So at this point the redundancy isn't really an issue, especially since there's already Phantasmal Image and Eternal Witness + Ghostly Flicker in the deck to act as backups for DEN.

While yes, Vorinclex does combo with Palinchron, other than that its basically a dead card. And with multiple combo redundancies, Vorinclex is just worse than any of the other pieces.

Where he does excel is in G/B reanimator stax decks, where you can get a turn 2 reanimated Vorinclex.

December 24, 2016 10:37 a.m.

Has anyone mentioned Psychosis Crawler?

December 28, 2016 10:56 p.m.

@huntersmith878: Jace, the Mind Sculptor was cut from the deck. It's a good card, and I would call it a staple in most competitive/semicompetitive decks, but it falls in an awkward spot on the mana curve and is somewhat clunky in practice.

Wall of Roots is an interesting consideration, but I think I would sooner have a mana rock for that CMC. Something that has unlimited uses and doesn't die to sweepers. I'm open to hearing people's experience with it, though.

@Eiyros: I think the primer article on my profile page has the code in it. Just make sure that any buttons you create are obviously marked; don't trick anyone into upvoting your deck.

@JaysomeDecks: enpc's answer is on point. Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger used to be in this deck (a long time ago). It became more obvious over time, however, that Vorinclex just doesn't offer enough value outside of the combo. Much of this has to do with how difficult it is to actually get Vorinclex onto the battlefield. Given the high CMC, and the prevalence of workarounds (mana rocks) and removal, it's really not practical to run Vorinclex as a utility card. As far as the combo is concerned, there are cheaper and better pieces that could be swapped in or tutored up if necessary.

@Its_Johnny_Bravo: Psychosis Crawler doesn't really do a whole lot in this deck. The aim here isn't to go for damage over time; it's to build up to a combo that can one-shot the whole table. You generally don't end up drawing enough cards to get lethal damage, and life totals don't matter once you go infinite. Although some combo routes would enable you to win using damage from Psychosis Crawler, it's not really practical given Psychosis Crawler's lack of utility, high cost, and incompatibility with the deck's overarching strategy.

In non-combo Damia decks, however, Psychosis Crawler may certainly be worth including. It all depends on the strategy.

December 28, 2016 11:32 p.m.

@ Epochalyptik

I agree with that. After reviewing more of what you have going on here it doesn't really fit the theme. Crawler might fit better in a creature heavy/defender style edh deck running this same commander.

December 29, 2016 6:38 a.m.

Silverf1sh says... #33

I believe you've talked about it before, but what's the criteria for whether Krosan Grip makes inclusion? Is it a meta call (should I definitely be running it in a meta with Omni-Infinite?), where it sits on the curve, or are other options just better?

As well, I was thinking of trying Glen Elendra Archmage in my iteration of the deck, but wondered where it would sit in a high competitive meta like the one where this deck shines in; is the political deterrent and wonderful ability worth the CMC?

December 29, 2016 1:22 p.m.

Baral, Chief of Compliance


@Silverf1sh: Krosan Grip is a meta call, yes. I generally don't run it because I don't think the split second is worth the extra compared to Nature's Claim, but if that effect matters in your meta, it's available.

I cut Glen Elendra Archmage because of its cost. If you find that your meta is slower and grinds games out, you could theoretically justify that cost in order to get a double-use counter effect.

January 4, 2017 11:53 a.m.

Emzed says... #35

You only have 17 cards that actually get cheaper from Baral (if we don't count hardcast FoW) and having cheaper spells that now cost mostly colored mana isn't necessarily great with the high number of colorless sources in your deck. It negates the effect of Thalia, Guardian of Thraben and similar stax cards partially, and it ramps towards Tooth and Nail (though not in form of extra lands, which you need in order to combo). The looting ability seems really sweet, and the combination of both effects does look attractive, but it's tough to evaluate without playtesting.

January 4, 2017 3:34 p.m.

I wouldn't necessarily count as a downside the fact that the discount leaves me responsible the colored portions of mana costs since I would need to pay that anyway.

I'm more concerned with the fact that Baral doesn't do anything upon entry; I have to use it in conjunction with other cards. The cantrip is really what makes this a consideration, though. The question is whether a semi-reliable draw engine stapled to a reliable discount effect fills an important enough niche in the deck to warrant inclusion.

You're right, though. Not an auto-include; it would come down to testing.

January 4, 2017 6:26 p.m.

Emzed says... #37

Of course having colorless mana that you don't need to use on your spells isn't a disadvantage, i was just trying to say that the cost reduction also doesn't really matter in that case. The number of spells you get to cast in a turn might be more limited by your colored sources than by the total mana cost. Of course that doesn't happen all the time, it just factors into the evaluation of the cost reduction.
I also just noticed Baral's loot ability requires actual successful countering of a spell. If you are outmatched in a counterwar, he doesn't do anything and can't help to get you back into the game. Obviously, with the number of counters you are running, usually you should resolve a few of them, but Baral is certainly no Merfolk Looter that guarantees one activation per turn. But you can do some sweet things with redundant copies of Flusterstorm, targetting other copies and creating extra Baral triggers (if the Storm mechanic actually allows that, not entirely sure).

January 4, 2017 6:57 p.m.

Ishio says... #38

Epochalyptik: It may have been mentioned earlier, but digging through 114 pages of comments is rough. What's the overall opinion on Manabond keeping in mind Burgeoning and Exploration are in the deck.

January 5, 2017 2:16 p.m.

enpc says... #39

Ishio: Usually discarding your hand at the end of your turn is bad when you're a control deck. You could potentially generate a bit of value if Damia is in play but then you'd have no means of protecting her and she probably wouldn't survive.

January 5, 2017 7:13 p.m.

Ishio says... #40

enpc: I completely understand. I'm now thinking, even if it was a beginning of the game card, it'd be a dead slot in the 99 if not drawn in the early game. Thank you.

January 5, 2017 8:20 p.m.

Emzed says... #41

The newly spoiled Illusionist's Stratagem is more powerful than Ghostly Flicker since it allows you to draw your deck when comboing, any thoughts if that is worth one extra mana?

January 6, 2017 1:32 p.m.

BiggestJohn says... #42

I doubt the new flicker will work, in going infinite you HAVE to draw your deck and then some. The card draw is not a "may".

January 7, 2017 1:51 a.m.

enpc says... #43

By the time you've drawn your deck, you'll have enough mana to cast the rest of the combo pieces. That's not the issue. The issue is that outside of combo it's not as good as Ghostly Flicker. It only hits creatures, meaning you lose some good interactions with cards like Top or Cradle. Not to mention the extra mana makes it harder to cast.

January 7, 2017 2:19 a.m.

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Compare to inventory
Date added 4 years
Last updated 1 month
Exclude colors WR

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Cards 101
Avg. CMC 2.48
Tokens 1/1 Spirit, 1/1 Bird
Folders Good Decks, EDH, EDH, edh ideas, Awesome EDH, EDH, 6. Funnihilator, Brilliant, EDH Decks, Other People's Decks, See all 444
Top rank #2 on 2012-08-19
Views 247537

Revision 57 (1 month ago)

-1 Leyline of Anticipation main
+1 Kiora's Follower main
+1 Damia, Sage of Stone main

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