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.

If you like the deck, please show your support by upvoting!


I finally got around to updating the barebones description. I say updating, but it was more of a total overhaul.

This deck now has a worthy primer that will walk you through everything from the card choices to the combos, and it even offers advice on recreating and adapting the deck.

Feel free to explore the new material and offer comments for the deck or primer as you see fit.

Just resetting the discussion. The page was becoming annoyingly long.

This deck is performing well, but I still feel that it should be faster and more consistent. Maybe I'm just greedy.

Speaking of greed, I have a list of cards to acquire.

I decided to drop some of the slower and more situational cards to add a major boost to my ramp package. The deck now regularly gets to turn three Damia.

I had the opportunity today to play a couple games with this deck, and I also spent a good deal of time speaking with its codesigner. He has opted to drop many of the expensive counterspells and ramp cards in favor of their faster counterparts. He also runs a few mana dorks - a choice with which I don't necessarily agree. However, I more frequently play in multiplayer pods, so I face a higher risk of playing against sweepers.

I cut the filter lands for basics because, after talking with my friend, I realized they weren't always optimal. Running two of each basic allows me to squeeze a few extra uses out of my fetches. I also upgraded the basics into snow-covered basics in case I run into anyone using snow lands any Extraplanar Lens.

Finally, I dropped Survival of the Fittest for Lotus Cobra. I don't run enough creatures for Survival of the Fittest to really do what I need it to do, and Lotus Cobra is stupid with nine fetches, Nature's Lore, Skyshoud Claim, and three Exploration effects.

I'm considering dropping

  • Mana Web - It's limited in application, and completely irrelevant in some games.
  • Bribery - It's great when it works, but there have been many games where I didn't even cast it.
  • Mystic Snake - It has a good interaction with Deadeye Navigator, but I rarely play Deadeye Navigator outside of my combo, and Mystic Snake itself ends up being little more than an expensive counterspell.
  • Cryptic Command - Although I like Cryptic Command as a card, it's prohibitively expensive for a deck that wants to ramp and control as much as possible.
  • Fact or Fiction - I like the instant-speed card advantage, but I often find the mana cost inconvenient.
  • Leyline of Anticipation - I'm on the fence about this one. It's great to have on the field from turn 0, but it's inconvenient to cast if I ever draw it.

Just cleaning up the discussion a bit. At this point, there are 507 comments on this deck.
I'm siding out Deserted Temple for Cavern of Souls on the advice of my co-designer. We play enough Wizards to make Cavern a viable inclusion.
No major changes at this point, just sweeping the existing comments under this update. Discussion for this deck seems to be dwindling, but I still want to keep it updated and finely-tuned. I've been busy lately, but when a tourney or event rolls around, I want this deck to be ready to perform.

In the wake of the RC's horrendous decision to ban Primeval Titan, I have made the following changes to the deck:


  1. Primeval Titan
  2. Cabal Coffers (it isn't good enough without Primeval Titan to find it)
  3. Mindbreak Trap (it hasn't impressed me in the time I've been testing it)


  1. Azusa, Lost but Seeking
  2. Wasteland
  3. Necropotence

Just made a few minor edits and tucked all comments to clean things up.


CharlesMandore says... #1

Interesting deck set up, how's that done? Love the way everything is set up and such. Good job!

December 25, 2014 9:17 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #2

@CharlesMandore: I'm not quite sure what you mean when you ask "hows that done?"

In terms of performance, it's done quite well. There are always cards to be tested and improvements to be made, but the deck is strong.

In terms of how it was achieved, the deck has evolved slowly (with a few radical changes interspersed) over a period of about two and a half years. The changes were all aimed at making the deck faster, more efficient, and more reliable.

December 25, 2014 9:26 p.m.

CharlesMandore says... #3

Let me clarify, your deck is sorted differently, is this a feature I'm merely unaware of?

December 25, 2014 9:33 p.m.

imarockyou says... #4

Why the cut of Hinder and Homeward Path ?

December 25, 2014 10:42 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #5

@CharlesMandore: See the newest post in the Site Updates forum. You can now tag cards and choose to sort the decklist by tags (you can actually choose from a number of default sorts).

@imarockyou: I cut Hinder for testing purposes. I want to experiment with 37 lands in the deck, and Hinder is kind of awkward to use. Yes, it's very effective at stopping generals, but it's also a three-mana counterspell. Homeward Path didn't really prove very useful in the competitive environment. Although it's a good card, it isn't relevant often enough for me to justify running it instead of another on-color land.

December 25, 2014 11:12 p.m.

atgarnett says... #6

no negate?

December 25, 2014 11:20 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #7

@atgarnett: Negate is good, to be sure, but I don't think it's better than the counterspells I currently run. There could be some argument as to whether it's more optimal than the fully-saturated, three-mana Voidslime, I suppose.

December 25, 2014 11:26 p.m.

kmcree says... #8

Have you considered Library of Alexandria? I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on it.

December 26, 2014 3:34 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #9

It's not a very difficult consideration since it's banned.

December 26, 2014 3:36 p.m.

kmcree says... #10

And now I feel dumb. Haha. Sorry, I'm not very familiar with the EDH banlists.

December 26, 2014 3:39 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #11

If it weren't, it would certainly be in the deck.

December 26, 2014 3:45 p.m.

Jigsaw107 says... #12

What do you think about Empty the Pits? I have a list similar to yours but I have had some good success with the card since it's instant and can typically catch others off guard.

December 27, 2014 12:37 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #13

@Jigsaw107: Empty the Pits isn't useful in this deck. I almost never attack, and the deck's sole purpose is to combo. I don't want to include non-combo cards that don't support the win conditions; it's not an efficient or effective use of deck space.

December 27, 2014 5 a.m.

atgarnett says... #14

I doubt any one has asked you this but what cards could be added or removed to make it 'more fun' to play and play against?

December 27, 2014 12:25 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #15

More fun to play? Probably nothing. Fun is subjective, and I love playing high-power decks in high-pressure games. I don't like randomness or the theme decks that are most often associated with "fun" EDH.

More fun to play against? Not sure. That's not really my issue. I only play this deck in competitive environments where it's understood that this is the caliber of deck that everyone's bringing to the table.

Of course, if you wanted to adapt the deck for your own playgroup, you'd have to be careful. Combo-control is a very oppressive archetype, and it does not fit into all playgroups. You'd probably be better off building something else for a casual pod.

December 27, 2014 4:28 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #16

I'm more strongly considering cutting Voidslime and adding Diabolic Intent. It seems like the most appropriate cut at the current moment. See the "Possible cuts" and "Possible additions" sections of the primer for an explanation.

December 28, 2014 7:41 p.m.

Orbrunner says... #17

Due to Diabolic Intent's sorcery speed, I would rather propose Negate as a replacement for Voidslime. Grim Tutor also seems to be largely better than Intent due to the unreliability of having an insignificant creature to sacrifice.

December 28, 2014 9:50 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #18

@Orbrunner: I could test Negate, I suppose.

Sorcery speed doesn't really hurt Diabolic Intent. The significant thing is that the card goes directly to my hand. And I usually have a creature to sacrifice (typically a ramp creature).

I don't like Grim Tutor because it's . Increased cost is a very big deal in this deck, and it's the reason I'm considering cutting Voidslime and Jace, the Mind Sculptor. Higher costs are a lot harder to work around because they force me to wait longer for a card to become viable and to delay more actions because I need more mana to cast each spell.

December 28, 2014 10 p.m.

Orbrunner says... #19

The 1-black-mana difference is very significant, yes. It's the reason that I prefer Toxic Deluge over Damnation in this deck. However, in this case, the cost of the creature may also need to be factored in, and that can raise the functional cost of the tutor. In addition, sacrificing a ramp creature is effectively a negative ramp; this leads to my preferring the 1-mana-higher Grim Tutor. That said, I think that both Grim and Intent should be tested in that slot if you choose to go with the tutor rather than the counterspell.

December 28, 2014 10:08 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #20

I suppose it depends largely on when you intend to be casting the creature. For the most part, Diabolic Intent is a Stage II or Stage III tutor, which means I can afford to sacrifice ramp dorks like Birds of Paradise or Azusa, Lost but Seeking.

True, the functional cost of the tutor is increased for these choices, but it's a matter of whether the creature has already generated the advantage I needed it to and whether I need it later. In most cases, I'll have already gotten use out of the creature, and I probably won't need it on my combo turn. The nice thing about the ramp in this deck is that it's exponential. If I play Birds of Paradise on turn one, then use it to cast Nature's Lore on turn two, then use it to cast Skyshroud Claim on turn three, then I can afford to lose Birds of Paradise (for any reason) because it's already given me a substantial return on investment. Now, it won't always play out like this, but the ramp normally compounds in a way that mitigates the deficit of losing a ramp creature later in the game.

I suppose the worthiest counterargument would be that there will be times when Diabolic Intent can't realistically be cast, but I think it will, on the whole, be more frequently viable than Grim Tutor, which is much more expensive to cast.

December 28, 2014 10:17 p.m.

DarkHamlet says... #21

December 30, 2014 7:33 a.m.

ChiefBell says... #22

Defense of the Heart is too risky - without other enablers it often does absolutely nothing. Even when it does do something, it's too slow.

December 30, 2014 8:06 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #23

Basically that. Defense of the Heart is slow, and it lets my opponents know the combo is coming. Unless I use it to find Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir, and I have a tutor in hand, I can't effectively win with it.

One of the reasons Tooth and Nail is such a central combo piece is that it can be recast and immediately find other components to the combo.

December 30, 2014 12:57 p.m.

DarkHamlet says... #24

Yea, master, I understand, but why Forbidden Orchard? over, for example Exotic Orchard. That is my question

December 31, 2014 5:31 p.m.


1/1s don't matter, especially when everyone is using combos to kill the other players rather than combat. Exotic Orchard is quite good, but the drawback on Forbidden Orchard is so insignificant that it is just a better choice. The risk of inconsistency is not necessary.

Also, stop calling him Master. It's rather vomit-inducing.

December 31, 2014 5:55 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #26

I can always be sure that Forbidden Orchard will produce all three of my colors. I can't be sure that Exotic Orchard will do the same. And, as GlistenerAgent said, 1/1s don't matter. Even if I had to combo with Forbidden Orchard and therefore give an opponent infinite tokens, I'd kill everyone before they had a chance to do anything with them.

December 31, 2014 6:29 p.m.

DMR says... #27

@Epochalyptik Wouldn't Exsanguinate be much better than Blue Sun's Zenith as a combo finisher to kill everyone in a multiplayer game? Considering Zenith only hits one player, it's less efficient, and mana-wise it seems like it would be harder to cast already. Thoughts?

December 31, 2014 8:03 p.m.

I love this effing deck. Makes my spike hard. Lol.

Now to go in my corner and make Karrthus, Tyrant of Jund competitive...

December 31, 2014 8:11 p.m.

Gspot says... #29

@DMR Exsanguinate does nothing to help the deck's game plan outside of the combo. BuSZ is a good draw spell outside of the combo.

December 31, 2014 8:19 p.m.

Gspot says... #30

Forgot to mention when this deck wins he tutors his entire deck at instant-speed. finding zenith to cast again is no trouble.

December 31, 2014 8:21 p.m.

enpc says... #31

Guys, this deck has a really in-depth and easy to follow description now. Remember, descriptions are really important to read as they often have answers to questions you might have.

December 31, 2014 8:29 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #32

Basically what Gspot said. Exsanguinate is a good finisher, but that's all it is. Part of what helps this deck last until Stage III is that it's built on win conditions and combo pieces that can be viable outside of the combo if necessary. Blue Sun's Zenith is a decent utility spell if I need it to be (for example, if I can't get Damia, Sage of Stone to stick).

Additionally, when I win with Blue Sun's Zenith, one of two things happens:

  1. I cast Blue Sun's Zenith on myself to draw my deck, then combo my opponents out of the game by playing Rune-Scarred Demon to pick up Blue Sun's Zenith after each cast.
  2. I use Rune-Scarred Demon to grab Blue Sun's Zenith and the rest of my deck, then combo from there in the same manner.

Recasting Blue Sun's Zenith isn't an issue for me. Plus, mana efficiency doesn't matter when I use an infinite mana combo to enable the win. Fussing about mana efficiency at that point is like choosing what flagstones I want on the house I'm building after I knock yours down.

December 31, 2014 8:35 p.m.

DMR says... #33

Ah, very good points. Thank you for clearing that up for me!

December 31, 2014 8:42 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #34

Frontier Siege is interesting.

Very interesting.

January 2, 2015 4:19 a.m.

ChiefBell says... #35

Do you not like the blue one? Allows you to draw 2 and discard any 1 from hand every turn for 3 mana.

January 2, 2015 4:24 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #36

I did see that one, but I have two main problems with it.

First, CMC 3 is an awkward spot on the curve. A card with CMC 3 can't come down on turn one, and, if played on turn two, would probably be my only play. And I would need to deny myself a ramp spell like Nature's Lore unless I had a ramp rock from turn 1. (This isn't to say that CMC 4 is more realistic. But at least Frontier Siege pays for itself the same turn.)

Second, the ability doesn't interact well with Necropotence or Damia, Sage of Stone, which are my two primary draw engines.

It's probably worth testing just to be sure, but I have reservations about it.

January 2, 2015 4:29 a.m.

ChiefBell says... #37

I don't think having extra draw is a bad thing but I understand the nonbo with various other pieces.

I'm not sure frontier siege does pay for itself as soon as you play it. It adds GG at the start of each main phase. Play it main phase 1 youll get GG in main phase 2 of the same turn. Play it main phase 2 you won't see any mana till the next turn. Still a good card though. Also given that mana drains at the end of each phase: adding GG on the turn you play it isn't that useful. If you tap out when you have 4 lands, you'll momentarily have an extra 2 mana in main phase 2 but you still won't have any for a counterspell in the opponents turn. I think that makes it a little awkward. To play it safely you'd still probably need around 6 land. Although with access to 5 you can play frontier siege then when it adds GG in the main phase play a ramp spell to get you to 6?

January 2, 2015 4:43 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #38

With the ramp rocks and low-cost ramp creatures, Frontier Siege becomes viable as a turn two or turn three play. While it's true that the is only temporary, it would allow me to play other ramp cards during the second main phase and fund other spells in the coming turns.

Also, most of my turn occurs in main phase one. There's no reason to split the plays up, really. I almost never attack with this deck.

January 2, 2015 2:08 p.m.

ChiefBell says... #39

That's fair enough. I think I was just pointing out that it doesn't fully fund itself instantaneously.

January 2, 2015 3:57 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #40

Not fully, no, but getting back the same turn makes it much more forgiving than if it waited a turn (even though that is temporary).

Generating four free mana a turn is pretty big, though.

January 2, 2015 4:06 p.m.

enpc says... #41

But what would you take out for it? Oracle of Mul Daya? Its a really nice effect to be sure, but the biggest issue is that the mana you get is not GGGG but GG and next phase GG. So even though it gives you 4 mana, it's not like you can Skyshroud Claim off it or anything.

January 2, 2015 5:27 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #42

I'd probably start with the cards in the sideboard (i.e. the cards I'm already considering dropping). I'm not an absolutist about adding and dropping within the same category (control, ramp, etc.).

And I'm completely aware that the mana is broken into two chunks, but the point still stands that you're getting four mana on each of your turns. Combo turn aside, most of my plays are in the CMC 2-4 range, so that extra is a huge boost, and it's still completely usable in two installments.

January 2, 2015 6:13 p.m.

DarkHamlet says... #43

Blue Sun's Zenith is in Utility list AND in Wincon list, some kind of error?

January 4, 2015 8:08 p.m.

Well, it does both.

January 4, 2015 8:09 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #45

You can give cards multiple tags. There's one in the deck, but it serves multiple purposes.

January 4, 2015 8:13 p.m.

Chubbub says... #46

Would Baleful StrixBe viable here? It's an automatic two for one. Also, why no Treasure Cruise or Dig Through Time? And would the frf card Temporal Trespass be good or is the triple blue too difficult to achieve?

January 4, 2015 9:29 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #47

@Chubbub: Baleful Strix isn't really a two-for-one. Combat rarely exists at the competitive multiplayer level (infinite tokens aside), and a deathtouching blocker isn't really a good removal card. Baleful Strix just doesn't do much in EDH.

I haven't yet tested Treasure Cruise or Dig Through Time. I remain skeptical, but I'm open to the option.

Triple blue is very easy to get in this deck. I usually have it by the second or third turn. However, I'm not a fan of power cards that exile themselves, especially if they cost quite a bit. Delve 8 isn't the best thing to be doing with my graveyard, and Temporal Trespass really isn't economical unless you're delving as much as possible.

January 4, 2015 10:16 p.m.

atgarnett says... #48

I know that many stores will follow the optional rule of 10 card side boards to quote "Players may bring a 10 card sideboard in addition to their 99 cards and 1 Commander. After Commanders are announced, players have 3 minutes to make 1-for-1 substitutions to their deck. Any cards not played as part of the deck may be retrieved by "wishes". " are you going to construct a side board for this deck?

January 5, 2015 9:47 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #49

I could, I suppose. If I were to start playing it seriously again, I'd probably have some cards I'd bring along just in case.

January 5, 2015 9:50 p.m.

Jaytron says... #50

Damn, this is probably the type of list I want to work my Mimeo list up to eventually.

How does your Damia list hold up vs other T1 generals like Hermit Druid, Zur, and Sharuum?

January 6, 2015 5:19 p.m.

The-Xellos says... #51

What are your thoughts on the new counter spell "neutralizing blast" (1 colorless + 1 blue, counter target multicolor spell)

January 7, 2015 8:11 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #52

@Jaytron: You might want to be careful there. The Mimeoplasm can work with this shell but you'll need to modify the shell itself in some ways. The deck relies on the draw power Damia provides in order to refill its hand in Stage II. It's also not reanimator oriented.

As for matchups, they go back and forth. The Tier 1 competitive decks are all very good, and games often come down to draws and plays rather than pure deck design or archetype favor.

That said, this deck is not optimized for 1v1 games, and Zur often puts too much pressure on it in that respect.

@The-Xellos: It doesn't seem that useful. It's limited to countering some generals (mono blue does have a competitive presence, so Neutralizing Blast isn't a catch-all) and some utility spells. The problem is that most staples and wincons tend to be monocolored. Negate would probably be better.

January 7, 2015 11:50 a.m.

itisme282 says... #53


January 7, 2015 8:20 p.m.

rob_shifflett says... #54

Oona, Queen of the Fae would give you another wincon for infinite mana.

I know that you said Mikaeus is not good for this deck, but Mikaeus, the Unhallowed+Woodfall Primus+Altar of Dementia has been really fun in my BUG deck.

January 7, 2015 9:29 p.m.

enpc says... #55

@rob_shifflett: If Mikaeus, the Unhallowed as used, Epoch may as well just use Triskelion as you need less bits to make the combo work (more free cards in the deck left over) and Tooth and Nail can fetch both the combo pieces then.

January 7, 2015 9:38 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #56

@rob_shifflett: The problem with those cards is that they don't really fit into the deck very well. One of the things that helps make the deck so resilient is that most of the win conditions double as utility cards if they have to. I don't like including cards like Oona, Queen of the Fae, Mikaeus, the Unhallowed, Woodfall Primus, or Altar of Dementia because they don't do that; these cards are ineffective as utility cards either due to cost or lack of power.

Of course, I don't deny that some of the alternate combos are fun to play. The problem is that I just don't have the space to include them in the deck because the list is already so tight.

January 7, 2015 9:38 p.m.

rob_shifflett says... #57

Well Said.

January 8, 2015 2:23 a.m.

Jigsaw107 says... #58

Have you considered Meekstone at all? Given its low mana cost and that you are rarely swinging into the red zone it can shut down a fair amount of decks. I'm not sure how many aggro decks actually exist in a hyper competitive version of EDH, but could be a nice sideboard card.

January 8, 2015 1:56 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #59

@Jigsaw107: Meekstone doesn't really do much. Most competitive decks are combo decks, so there's very little combat during any given game. I'd rather not run a card to prevent further attacks or utility abilities if it doesn't do anything else; the utility is pretty marginal there.

Besides, I don't mind chumping with a utility creature if it keeps me alive for an extra turn to win the game.

January 8, 2015 2:21 p.m.

Jigsaw107 says... #60

No that makes sense. I play in a less competitive group so that's why I use it to try and stall time. Makes sense though given how many combo decks are out there.

January 8, 2015 3:16 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #61

Also, in case anyone was curious, this deck now has 2,194 comments (counting this one).

January 8, 2015 4:27 p.m.

dberg101 says... #62

Any particular reason why Ancestral Vision Was not included in the list

January 8, 2015 7:15 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #63

It's slow.

I'll admit that I never did actually test it, but it would need to be a turn one play to even be justifiable. And that means I'm not playing a ramp dork (my main option would be to Mox Diamond the cost or land into Exploration into blue source to not screw my tempo).

Any later than that and I risk not even making it to the end of the suspend period. This deck likes to win in about five or six turns. If I drew it in the late game, I'd just be pitching it to Force of Will or something (which, in itself, isn't horrible, but it's not optimal if the card is otherwise dead).

January 8, 2015 7:19 p.m.

swkelly89 says... #64

with your ability to make large amounts of mana, what about Curse of the Swine, as it'll help get around people playing Avacyn, Angel of Hope for example, or just clear the board and leave everyone with just 2/2s

January 8, 2015 7:45 p.m.

Gspot says... #65

Avacyn, Angel of Hope is never played in heavy combo edh metas, and Curse of the Swine (while a personal favorite card of mine) is far too mana inefficient for a sorcery speed removal spell.

January 8, 2015 7:49 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #66

Avacyn, Angel of Hope isn't a threat to me. Either I kill everyone before I'm threatened or I bounce the threat and go on about my business.

My problems with Curse of the Swine are the cost and the speed. Toxic Deluge would be a better option, and it can still get rid of indestructible stuff.

January 8, 2015 7:50 p.m.

enpc says... #67

What about Reality Shift then? It gives instant speed removal for cheap and the ability to potentially 2-for-1 them if the top card isn't a creature (especially with the prevelence of things like Mystical Tutor / Vampiric Tutor)?

January 8, 2015 8:16 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #68

I'd sooner run Pongify for spot removal. There are very few indestructible creatures that are even relevant in competitive EDH, so the reduced cost is more valuable than the ability to get past indestructibility.

January 8, 2015 8:26 p.m.

enpc says... #69

Which is fair enough, however the other benefit is that when exiling a creautre it also can't be reanimated/returned from the graveyard. You used to run Beast Within yeah? did you ever have a problem with beasting something only to have the beast token swung into you repeatedly? in this case (and similar with Pongify), the fact that the creature is a 2/2 over a 3/3 is actually noticable when taking into account the average P/T of your creatures. Just something I've come across. Thoughts?

January 8, 2015 8:40 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #70

P/Ts and combat don't matter. I'll win the game before a 3/3 can kill me. The most a token can normally do is annoy me and make Necropotence and Mana Crypt slightly more dangerous, but there's no real threat.

January 8, 2015 8:43 p.m.

The-Xellos says... #71

I like what enpc was saying about Reality Shift. It is true that Pongify is a cheaper spot remover, but with people running card to put cards on there deck and some of your spells putting cards back on there deck. You could use that card and now it is a creature instead of a deadly spell for there combo killer. I can see this card more as a denial/delay more then a spot remover.

For instance you have your commander out (or another creature) and you Mystical Tutor your Tooth and Nail at the end of my turn. I can then answer with Reality Shift your commander (or another creature you have out) and now your Tooth and Nail is a creature and you cannot cast it and it isn't in your graveyard to get it back. Me knowing that will not kill that card for fear of one of the many combos in the deck. This would mean that you would have to kill that creature to play it from the graveyard, which would make 1 less removal that you can use on me. Same can be done if using Memory Lapse, but then you have to have both cards in your hand for it to work.

I see the needing to use on a creature probably a down side of it because if they do not have a creature on the field and you know that spell is next, there is nothing you can do about it.

January 9, 2015 8:58 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #72

@The-Xellos: That's a good application, but it's only marginally relevant. I would have to know for sure that the top card of someone's library is a threat, and I would have to have up and Reality Shift in hand. It might be a cute trick once, if I could ever get that situation to occur, but it's not nearly consistent enough to base deckbuilding choices on.

It's like running mill as a substrategy. Some players think that a few mill cards might be useful in a non-graveyard deck because there's a chance they could get rid of something important in an opponent's library. This is a waste of cards because you have no idea where the most useful cards are and no way to guarantee that milling is actually disrupting your opponent in a significant way.

January 9, 2015 9:06 a.m.

Kiora_Fan-01 says... #73

Just outta curiousity, do you play IRL and if so do you own this and/or don't care about dropping some money on it?

January 9, 2015 2:21 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #74

I rarely play, but I do own the deck. Most of it is pimped out, and the total value comes to around $4650 or so.

January 9, 2015 2:41 p.m.

Kiora_Fan-01 says... #75

K, jw.

January 9, 2015 3:08 p.m.

DokuNoSquid says... #76

how about that Insidious Dreams?

January 9, 2015 3:23 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #77

@DokuNoSquid: Insidious Dreams isn't good. At , it's hard to use properly. I won't always have the mana available for it, and it's only really economical if I'm getting multiple cards from it. That means I have to discard quite a bit and have Damia still up (hard to guarantee around the cost). It's just too clunky and needlessly risky.

January 9, 2015 3:30 p.m.

DokuNoSquid says... #78

Ah, i find it was useful for my damia deck, as a convenient "oh you tapped out? you dun goofed." Thought it might be something interesting

January 9, 2015 5:31 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #79

In a less competitive environment, it's certainly worth considering. But competitive EDH is very unforgiving in terms of opportunities and suppression. You always have to consider the volume of disruption that's coming in and how you need to match it.

January 9, 2015 5:50 p.m.

jaceong says... #80

Epochalyptik i want to build similar list to yours for 1v1 competitive environment do you have any suggestion or advice

January 14, 2015 10:57 p.m.

enpc says... #81

@jaceong: 1v1 or Duel commander? Because if you're going from the French EDH rules and banlist, I would recommend having a look at this deck:

Boros Reanimator Playtest

Duel Commander TurboFagoot


January 14, 2015 11:17 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #82

@asoFF: I'll answer your question here since it seems appropriate.

Basically, asoFF's question was whether the deck could be modified to be playable in a competitive Duel Commander environment. jaceong, this might also answer your question.

The deck was designed for traditional EDH rules and a multiplayer environment, although the deck as it is can sometimes handle 1v1 matches (it doesn't do as well against traditional EDH 1v1 commanders like Zur the Enchanter because they're optimized for single-opponent focus). Much of the deck's power comes from its explosive openers, which are enabled by cards like Mana Vault, Sol Ring, Mana Crypt, Grim Monolith, and Crucible of Worlds. Losing these cards would drastically hinder the deck's tempo.

Additionally, Vampiric Tutor, Imperial Seal, and Necropotence are significant cards, and it'd be hard to lose them.

With that said, I will also admit that I have very very limited knowledge when it comes to French rules. I'm not familiar with the tier one decks or with the tempo of the format. I can only really offer observations about how the deck would be affected in its current form by a change in the available cards.

As asoFF pointed out in a post on my profile, French rules don't actually ban any of this deck's combo pieces, so the win conditions are still theoretically viable. The game just becomes a matter of achieving them much more slowly and with fewer power plays.

I think you'd have to rely a lot more on the Exploration effects if you modified the deck for French rules. You might also want to run more basics to support some less efficient ramp spells.

January 15, 2015 12:47 a.m.

Jaytron says... #83


I noticed you said you don't play often. How do you test new inclusions nowadays? Anything from FRF that you are liking?

January 15, 2015 5:33 p.m.

Jaytron says... #84

I guess you can disregard my FRF question, I see there's been discussion on the cards I'd think to include :P

January 15, 2015 5:39 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #85

For those who didn't see the Deck Help thread I created a few days ago, I've added a thought challenge to the primer. Test your knowledge and skill in a hypothetical scenario!

January 17, 2015 3:14 p.m.

ChiefBell says... #86

Epoch. Do you think you should maybe clean up the update section?

This deck on a phone is a hellscape.

January 17, 2015 3:16 p.m.

ChiefBell says... #87

It literally gave me repetitive strain injury.

January 17, 2015 3:17 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #88

I think yeaGO is working on a way to hide all but the most recent update (or there was talk of this idea, at least). I think the only way I could compress them would be do delete them all and create one large update holding something like 2,200 comments.

January 17, 2015 3:27 p.m.

imarockyou says... #89

Have you thought about playing Tainted Pact orDemonic Consultation , like another Demonic tutor

January 17, 2015 11:42 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #90

Those cards are far too risky to be practical.

Tainted Pact introduces the possibility of exiling a key combo piece before it's needed. If that happens, I'd be forced to choose it and have a dead card in hand for the next few turns. I'd rather just tutor for the card I actually want so I don't waste resources.

Demonic Consultation sidesteps the shortcoming of Tainted Pact, but it falls off the cliff in the process. If I exile the named card as one of the top six, I end up exiling my entire library. Demonic Consultation also doesn't come with the same "stop here and take a subpar card" safety feature that Tainted Pact has; you must continue revealing until you hit a predetermined card.

January 17, 2015 11:54 p.m.

KingSorin says... #91

Would you consider changing the commander to Tasigur, the Golden Fang? It has delve, it's a lot cheaper than damia, and also provides you with card advantage, and can put stuff into the graveyard. This deck isn't a graveyard deck as such, but more options for Eternal Witness, Snapcaster Mage and Crucible of Worlds etc are nice, and the relatively useless ones like basic lands or ramp spells (assuming you have enough mana at this point) can be used to fuel a recast of Tasigur. Admittedly, it's quite slow, and opponents having choice is never a good thing, but he's faster than damia and performs a similar role, by giving you access to more options. The ability isn't sorcery speed, so you can also just hold up countermagic and end-of-turn generate value.

January 18, 2015 1:03 a.m.

EDHLOVE says... #92

How do I link you on my page as source or inspiration?

January 18, 2015 7:31 a.m.

EDHLOVE says... #93

I also wanted to know what cards you would run if Deadeye Navigator, Palinchron,and Consecrated Sphinx were banned. At least 2 of the 3. Sphinx isn't on the same tier yet, but close.

January 18, 2015 8:37 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #94

@KingSorin: Absolutely not (no offense). Tasigur, the Golden Fang doesn't actually do anything useful in this deck. I generally don't want to exile too many cards from my graveyard because most of them are still useful. I could justify it if Tasigur, the Golden Fang provided some unbeatable utility, but all it really does is mill me and let an opponent choose the least relevant card to return to my hand. The reason I run Damia, Sage of Stone is that it refills my entire hand after I spend many of my resources ramping in the early game. It's a reset button that allows me to maintain advantage.

@EDHLOVE: I think there used to be a field on the edit screen where you could credit another user's deck, but it doesn't seem to be there anymore. Maybe yeaGO could correct me on this.

As for your other comment, I'm not entirely sure. The deck relies on Palinchron perhaps more than it should. But I don't think Palinchron will get the axe any time soon. It's one of the things that helps ensure combo has a home in EDH. Then again, the RC is mostly casual, so I wouldn't surprise me if they hated combo out some day.

Deadeye Navigator doesn't really have a replacement. You can still make everything work with Phantasmal Image alone, but it's less ideal, especially because it means Phantasmal Image can no longer serve as a utility creature.

Consecrated Sphinx isn't really a staple in the deck. Most of the time, I win without ever casting it (or drawing it, or tutoring for it). It's just there as backup utility.

January 18, 2015 1 p.m.

yeaGO says... #95

if you hit copy on a deck it will stamp it but its not editable later.

January 18, 2015 1:49 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #96

Is there a way to add a field that accepts the URL of another deck and credits it as the source or inspiration material?

January 18, 2015 2:22 p.m.

KingSorin says... #97

Lol. Replace banned Palinchron with Great Whale :). Nah it'd probably be Peregrine Drake

January 18, 2015 5:35 p.m.

TheGamer says... #98

As you know, we're both Damia players. And i have been thinking about delve in this archetype. It sure makes Snapcaster Mage and Yawgmoth's Will a lot worse. But cards fill up in the grave fast, so delve cards like Dig Through Time and Temporal Trespass cost nothing.

Whats your opinion?

January 18, 2015 7:25 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #99

@TheGamer: While it's true that this deck does fill the yard at a fair rate, it's not quite fast enough or riskless enough to guarantee full delve payments for Dig Through Time and Temporal Trespass.

January 18, 2015 8:21 p.m.

imarockyou says... #100

I dislike some cards, why not play Dark Confidant. Or is their a fear of taking too much damage?

January 19, 2015 1:50 a.m.

erabel says... #101

imarockyou; It's probably more that it's more inefficient than Sylvan Library, Mystic Remora, or Necropotence when it comes to card draw, on top of the fact that it's removed easier than any of those.

January 19, 2015 1:55 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #102

Dark Confidant is okay, but that's about it. There's a chance that I would lose a lot more life than I can justify, but it's also not the best at what it does.

Then again, the deck's curve has been reduced quite a bit since I last even thought about Dark Confidant.

January 19, 2015 2:13 a.m.

Indigoindigo says... #103

Do you have any other EDH-decks? This deck is impressive, it would be interresting to see your other builds if you have any.

January 20, 2015 1:53 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #104

Not really. I have some prototype decks, but I don't publish them because I don't own them and won't be testing them.

January 20, 2015 2:26 p.m.

Indigoindigo says... #105

I'm currently fixing the ramp in my bant deck, and I'm considering something similar to the spells used here. Do you think your ramp-spells here are optimal for U/G/x in general, or is it dependent on Damias ability and work only as good in this particular build?

January 23, 2015 5:30 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #106

The ramp package is pretty much optimized solely as ramp. There's no dependence on Damia, although the draw power does help offset the drain of explosive openers.

January 23, 2015 5:44 p.m.

Werekill says... #107

This is less of a question about the deck itself and more of a question about other deck choices: how do you feel about Tasigur, the Golden Fang as a combo deck compared to this? Or Mimeo I suppose, but Mimeo typically has a more reanimator style so it isn't as relevant in this discussion. It goes for (or at least mine does) the early-mid game reanimation for large advantage in comparison to Damia ramping into card draw.

Tasigur, on the other hand, seems like a better Oona deck. The commander itself draws the deck if you have infinite mana, making it part of the wincon. All it's missing is the ease of refilling the hand that Damia gives. I'm curious to hear your opinion on how such a deck would compare to this one.

January 24, 2015 6:26 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #108

@Werekill: See post #94.

In my opinion, BUG functions better with Damia because it really benefits from faster openings. The more explosive your first turns are, the more you can do with your midgame. This is invaluable in combo-control because you need all the resources you can get to control the game and to set up your combo.

I guess the argument can be made that Tasigur, the Golden Fang is part of the combo once you go infinite, but there are much better ways to articulate the win than to run a subpar commander.

January 24, 2015 2:29 p.m.

Emory says... #109

How does this deck fair against decks like hermit Druid? Or zur? It's a great deck. I love coming back every now and then and see a funsy bug combo deck and seeing the changes you've made to it.

January 24, 2015 11:09 p.m.

imarockyou says... #110

@Epochalyptik, can u add me on skype, Joseph Yakhnin. I wanna discuss something with you. You're probably the only one who I know who can help me.

January 26, 2015 12:17 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #111

@Emory: Zur is a 1v1 deck, and this deck is optimized for multiplayer. In general, this deck doesn't have favorable matchups against dedicated 1v1 decks because they're faster and produce better single-opponent focus.

Hermit Druid can be stopped if you're careful about the control, but it does combo faster.

January 28, 2015 7:08 p.m.

Megalomania says... #112

Just curious. Damia is a good commander but, since you're using combos that generate infinite mana, wouldn't it be easier if you just went with Oona as commander?

January 29, 2015 11:13 p.m.

I think the green is necessary for the mana ramp to get him the explosive turns he needs to combo off as quickly as possible.

January 29, 2015 11:20 p.m.

enpc says... #114

Plus Tooth and Nail fetches Palinchron / Whatever which is the only way the deck can actually generate infinite mana.

January 29, 2015 11:26 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #115

Green is really important in EDH. The ramp is invaluable, and Tooth and Nail is a critical enabler because of how many unanswerable options you get.

January 29, 2015 11:31 p.m.

Megalomania says... #116

I see. But the only reason you really need to ramp as much is to have enough mana to cast Tooth and Nail. In a sense, it creates the need to have green in the deck.

I think my Oona deck, which was constructed using the articles you wrote as guidance, is pretty similar to your Damia deck especially in terms of how it operates and in its weakness (MLD, Blood Moon). What I did was to try and make the deck run on 4-6 lands making it faster and somewhat more resilient to MLD.

January 30, 2015 12:14 a.m.

Epochalyptik says... #117

Having Tooth and Nail > not having Tooth and Nail.

When it comes to enablers, Tooth and Nail is about the best you can get. In a clear board state, you fetch the win. In a riskier board state, you protect Tooth and Nail and grab Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir, which can't be answered. Then you find the win. Tooth and Nail doesn't create the need for green. It gives me one more way to win, and it happens to be in one of the two best colors.

Also, when you're trying to outrace three opponents, green's ramp power is invaluable.

January 30, 2015 1 a.m.

Emory says... #118

Couldn't agree more. I recently built a non combo bug deck (a chore in itself) and the sheer tutor power and land ramp alone wins most games

January 30, 2015 12:01 p.m.

Emory says... #119

Also, and I really hate double posting, but I have to ask. Why damia? Is it strictly for the card advantage or just the colors? If for colors then wouldn't mineoplasm work slightly better? His ability to pick combo pieces out of graveyard seems decent enough.

January 30, 2015 12:21 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #120

There's a section in the primer about why I chose Damia.

January 30, 2015 1:38 p.m.

atgarnett says... #121

Any suggestions for a Less competitive meta? By that I mean decks less combocentric (If that's even a word,) more focused on a slower game with incidental combos and larger creatures.

January 31, 2015 4:37 p.m.

Epochalyptik says... #122

You probably don't want to play this deck in a meta that doesn't focus on combos. This deck only wins through combos.

If you're determined to mix the two, you'll probably end up where this deck started: BUG goodstuff with combo finishers "just in case." This isn't a very efficient model because it requires that you split your attention and resources between two different strategies, and there will always be the temptation to combo out and secure the win (and the corresponding criticism that this will draw from your opponents).

January 31, 2015 4:58 p.m.

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Date added 2 years
Last updated 2 weeks

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 2.63
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Top rank #2 on 2012-08-19

Last update 4 weeks ago

+1 Frontier Siege maybe

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