Rally for Victory

Hi Rocky!

Food Chain Tazri Primer by u/Biglupu and u/ShaperSavant

Food Chain Tazri (FCT) is a blistering-fast competitive combo deck that is resilient, efficient, and cutthroat. It can win on any turn of the game, averaging a turn 3 or 4 win if uncontested. It utilizes ramp, draw, tutors, interaction, and protection from all 5 colors.

FCT is fairly resistant to many forms of stax and spot removal, while playing outs to effects it must remove and protective countermagic to force the combo through. The deck is very good at producing a win from an empty boardstate, needing approximately 4 mana or 3 mana and a creature to pay for its win (FC + starting the chain). The deck is modular; it can be adapted to the context of a meta by slotting in powerful custom interaction to stifle opponents while reaching toward its own goals.

This deck and primer is a joint effort between u/ShaperSavant and u/Biglupu. Biglupu's iteration of the deck is available here.

Food Chain Tazri (FCT) is a new mutation of combo deck resembling Food Chain Prossh: its built to utilize Food Chain and either Eternal Scourge or Misthollow Griffin to generate infinite mana, cast General Tazri to search up an ally outlet for either lethal life loss or lethal mill. It is approximately as fast as Food Chain Prossh and Hermit Druid and slightly edging out UBx Storm, goldfishing between a turn 3 and turn 4 win in most games. This combo is very light on requirements, only needing 5-6 cards in your deck to facilitate this gameplan: 2-3 wincon allies, 2 cast-from-exile creatures, and Food Chain.

The rest of the deck is filled with support cards of various colors; there is plenty of room for tutors, mana sources, and interaction. Having access to 5 colors allows the deck to access the most efficient options from any color. With 10 fetchlands, a selection of ABUR duals, and the best multicolor lands, hitting your color requirements is fairly easy.

The deck has a lot of interesting synergies, such as accruing incredible value by utilizing cards where exiling was designed as a penalty, such as Necropotence, Demonic Consultation, Tainted Pact, Chrome Mox, Gemstone Caverns, etc. The to-exile tutors, such as Manipulate Fate, are likewise extremely efficient at their function, being easy to cast while also cantripping.

The combo has 3 components:

To execute the combo: cast Food Chain, exile your utility creatures for FC mana, cast Eternal Scourge, exile for mana. Repeat for infinite FC mana. Cast General Tazri, fetch Kalastria Healer. Exile and recast Tazri infinitely for infinite life drain.

Simple, clean, and very light on slots required.

The Forbidden Tutors Demonic Consultation or Tainted Pact (and to a lesser extent Plunge into Darkness) are incredibly powerful ways to set up wins, as they often exile a cast-from-exile creature as they find Food Chain. They are also instant speed, low cost, and tutor to hand. Top-of-library tutors are excellent with these, as you are guaranteed to exile them without ever needing to draw them,

However, this strength comes with some inherent risk. Demonic Consultation has approximately a 6.66% chance of exiling Food Chain from the top 6 cards of a 90 card library. If all 3 ally outlets and Riftsweeper are exiled, it becomes very difficult to win the game.

There is around 45% chance to exile cast-from-exile without exiling all wincon allies in search of Food Chain. There is a 33.3% chance that Food Chain is on top both CFE creatures (thus missing them both) and a 25% chance that its under all 3 wincon allies, so there is a 9/20 chance for the ideal outcome to occur with your Forbidden Tutor.

Manipulate Fate, Foresight, Extract exile Eternal Scourge, allowing you to access a combo half as if it were in your hand. The exile 3 are very efficient because you can exile your Forsight/Extract with your Manipulate Fate together with your Misthollow and Scourge, so you wont end up drawing it later. Tainted Pact, Demonic Consultation, Necropotence and Plunge Into Darkness to get Scourge exiled while doing something else.

Necropotence is a powerful engine in the deck, allowing you to dig, stabilize, and convieniently exile a CFE creature without taking up hand space. A very worthy option if you have a tutor and nothing else going your way.

Chrome Mox and Gemstone Cavern can exile a CFE from your opener, mitigating the card loss.

Force of Will pitches Misthollow Griffin.

Plunge into Darkness exiling a CFE turns it from a really big Impulse into a really big Dig Through Time.

Riftsweeper shuffles a wincon ally (or Food Chain) into your deck if you exiled them by accident. Cast Tazri to fetch it back again for the win, so you dont necessarily have take your last wincon ally with Tainted Pact, as long as Riftsweeper is still in the deck.

Mana dorks are the most efficient form of ramp for the deck, as they can be exiled to Food Chain for mana to cast a CFE, or even pitched from your hand while chaining.

With the deck being 5-color, you have access to every possible 1-drop mana-producing creature. This may not seem like much, but this results into openers that often facilitate having 3 mana on the second turn, and free Eternal Scourges or Misthollow Griffs on your third turn when you are executing a combo with Food Chain. There hasnt previously been any marquee cEDH decks that have taken full advantage of both Noble Hierarch and Deathrite Shaman like this.

Having the maximum amount of 1 costing dorks and bunch of 1 CMC tutors leads to a very nice curve with over 30x 1 CMC spells. The deck has very painless Ad Nauseam, regularly drawing around 1 card per life spent. If you havent played a land yet, you can often win with a main phased Ad Nauseam, though usually do need have a dork on the field to start the Food Chain combo.

The deck plays cantrips like Sensei's Divining Top, Preordain, Ponder, Brainstorm and Gitaxian Probe to dig in the early game and to get more use out of Imperial Seal, Enlightened Tutor and Worldly Tutor in the late game. This helps against being stranded with useless tutors after Ad Nauseam. Of course, most of the time it's better to fire off your Nauseam in your opponent's end step, preferably before your third or fourth turn.

Food Chain Prossh (FCP) has been a long-standing front-runner when evaluating competitive fast-combo decks. It's fast, resilient, and has a good stax matchup, and a solid midrangy backup plan of Prossh beats. FCT has all of these elements (except the last) with subtle advantages in exile use and card options in U and W.

There are a lot of similarities regarding the speed and reliability of the combo, but there are as many differences as there are similarities. For example, while Imperial Recruiter is the best creature in Prossh, its not relevant enough to make the cut in Tazri. Prossh is a Cradle deck, while in Tazri its something you might end up running. Sphere of Resistance is an annoyance when you are playing Prossh, but a must remove hatepiece in Tazri.

FCP's combo similarly operates in three parts: Food Chain, CFE creature (Prossh himself) and an outlet like Blood Artist, Purphoros or Genesis Hydra. FCT replaces Prossh with Eternal Scourge or Misthollow and Blood Artist with Tazri.

What FCT has over FCP: runs massively fewer combo slots (doesn't need to run the 10+ outlets that prossh does), only needs to achieve 3 or 4 FC mana to Prosshs 3RGB, runs blue cantrips and filtering, runs a better interaction suite with blue counters and white removal, has extra tutors in the blue tutors (including exile tutors) and Enlightened Tutor, uses the to-exile tutors much more efficiently, is less soft to board wipes and Elesh Norn, has extra duals and a fetchland. Tazris manadorks are both better and higher in quantity, gaining access to both Noble Hierarch and Avacyns Pilgrim. FCT's interaction suite is vastly superior to FCP's, with access to blue (often free) countermagic, bounce spells, Silence, and Swords to Plowshares.

What FCP has over FCT: having the value-engine in the Command Zone gives Prossh natural hand-independent power, Prossh slightly more consistent color-production in 3-color than 5-color, Prossh doesn't need to run Scourges and specialized tutors for it (at the opportunity cost of having many outlets), FCP dodges blue-hate, and Prossh has a very solid combat backup plan between casting Prossh and playing Purphoros. Unlike Tazri, Prossh can combo with Food Chain through a cost increasing effect like Sphere of Resistance or GAAIV. Prossh can also dodge several different hate pieces with the right draw, including Humility, Torpor Orb or Stranglehold, unlike Tazri.

When you compare elements like resiliency or goldfish speed, the decks match up quite evenly. With an average draw, both decks often attempt to win on turn 3 or 4, fairly often with a 1 costing protection spell to back them in their attempt.

While the deck is VERY reliant on Food Chain, getting your Chain countered is not the end of the world. The deck (depending on variation) runs Yawgmoth's Will, Regrowth, Noxious Revival and Timetwister, for lines to get back Food Chain. With the deck's tutor and dork density, it's often likely to win after resolving a Timetwister -- exiled CFE won't be shuffled back, leaving you in a decent position to recover and win.

In a situation in which you are behind with a tutor and nothing else to do, tutoring Necropotence goes a long way to helping you recover. You can play to the speed you need, while also having a very convenient outlet to discard your Scourge, while building up the elements you need to attempt to win the game.

This deck has a versatile suite of responses to deal with the stax pieces that are typically the bane of fast-combo decks. The most threatening stax for this deck are Rule of Law effects, Sphere of Resistance effects, and Torpor Orb. Toxic Deluge, Nature's Claim, Chain of Vapor, and Cyclonic Rift are your best answers to unfortunate boardstates.

Many common stax pieces are relatively easy to play around. This deck plays around Gaddock Teeg essentially by default. Linvala, Keeper of Silence only shuts off dorks. Winter Orb isn't terribly impactful against low-land decks. Tazri is unaffected by Containment Priest. Rest in Peace only shuts off possible Yawgmoth's Will lines and implores you to be more careful with Food Chain. Trinisphere and Thorn of Amethyst are painful to set up through, but don't stop the execution of the combo. It is important to note that cards like Demonic Consultation, Tainted Pact, Plunge into Darkness and Lim-Dul's Vault are unaffected by cards like Aven Mindcensor or Stranglehold.

Additionally, the deck is unafraid of creature and artifact removal, as well as sorcery-speed interaction of most types, as it can generate wins from an empty boardstate without much effort. The most threatening interaction is instant speed enchantment removal and bounce.

This deck can also play some interesting hatebears of its own as an optional package. Flash hatebears like Containment Priest and Aven Mindcensor can be flashed in to reap their effects, sowing 3 or 4 mana on the next turn after untapping. Any harmful creature stax effect could be sacrificed to FC to lift the effect when Tazri is ready to win, if such a need would arise.

In many matchups where you feel like you have to slog through too much resistance or you need to win versus strong hate pieces like Eidolon of Rhetoric, you can always go through Ad Nauseam. Resolving end step Nauseam when your opponents have you already counted you out of the game is great way to steal a victory.

Aven Mindcensor and Containment Priest stand out as excellent meta-specific options to shut down strategies that have many answers to FCT's strategy, particularly Yisan and Karador.

Red: Weve opted to slim Tazri to a BUG shell with a light white splash for consistency, but there are a few red cards that can offer strong support: Orcish Lumberjack, Gamble, Wheel of Fortune, Red Elemental Blast, Pyroblast, Manamorphose, Simian Spirit Guide, Imperial Recruiter, Wear / Tear, Pyroclasm.

Additional dorks: This deck wants every 1-drop mana dork it can get its hands on. There are a few additional mana-generating creatures worth considering that fluctuate in and out of the build depending on the variation: Harabaz Druid, Wall of Roots, Bloom Tender, Orcish Lumberjack, Cloud of Faeries, Simian Spirit Guide, Devoted Druid.

Stax: This deck plays around and through stax fairly well, and has the incredible advantage of being able to sacrifice creature-based stax not only for Food Chain mana, but to end the effect that would prevent it from executing the combo. We ultimately removed the stax to focus on speed, but a few stand out as worthy of considering if they disrupt your opponents well enough: Containment Priest, Aven Mindcensor, Gaddock Teeg, Linvala , Kataki, War's Wage, Spirit of the Labyrinth.

Allies: The two allies worth considering are Harabaz Druid for additional tutorable ramp and Seagate Loremaster for tutorable gas. We found these not quite efficient enough to include, but remain on the radar as options.

Creature-heavy: As the number of utility/stax creatures increases, certain elements of each package becomes more attactive. Gaea's Cradle becomes a strong option when you have 25+ creatures. Imperial Recruiter is an excellent toolbox card when there are non-dork utility creatures you wish to choose from.

Tutors: There are many tutors that can be used if you have additional slots or some of the expensive ($) black tutors are out of financial reach. These have floated in and out of the build/radar: Grim Tutor, Diabolic Intent, Idyllic Tutor, Sylvan Tutor, Altar of Bone, Gamble, Dimir Machinations, Divining Witch.

Lands: Depending on your iteration of the deck, you may want to adjust your land base. Adding red prompts you to reconfigure the land base accordingly with the appropriate duals. You may wish to consider adding Volcanic Island or Taiga to turn on narrow fetches like Arid Mesa for additional colors. You may wish to play some of the painlands like Underground River, Llanowar Wastes, Yavimaya Coast for color redundancy. A staxxier shell may want Temple Garden. If facing sever non-basic hate, a basic Forest in your deck can be a godsend.

It's in the nature of cEDH that occasionally things just refuse to go your way. You can cast your commander when you want some extra help from your Command Zone. Here are few cases when you want to cast your commander without having infinite mana:

You want to have a wincon creature before you exile bunch of cards with Tainted Pact/Demonic Consultation in search of FC or CFE creature. This is usually done when you think there isnt much you can lose to, or when you just happen to have tons of mana. This line works better if you already have Food Chain out.

You need a blue card for your FoW, so you tutor up Halimar Excavator.

You have a mana-intensive line in mind like: Transmute Drift of Phantasms, play Manipulate Fate, play Food Chain and you want do it on the same turn, so you get Harabaz Druid in case you run it.

Kalastria Healer provides 1 or 2 life either to survive or for a line that requires paying life.

You have Food Chain, but no cast-from-exile creature, and you need to ping someone to death from a low life total; you find Hagra Diabolist, recur Tazri, find Kalastria Healer, recur Tazri, it adds up to decent amount as Diabolist pings X where X is the number of allies you control every time an ally enters the battlefield. Costs a lot of mana, but it can do work.

If you are resolving a Tainted Pact in search of a CFE creature, remember to keep going until you either see your last wincon ally or a protection spell like Force or Pact of Negation.

This deck is very green reliant between dorks and FC cost. It is very risky to keep a hand without a reliable green source. You strongly desire to see a tutor and a ramp piece in your opener.

Wordly Tutor and Eladamri's Call can be converted to a tutor for Food Chain in the form of Drift of Phantasms, since its a 3 mana creature with Transmute cost of 1UU. Drift is mostly used as a turn 2 Grim Tutor for you missing piece after playing a dork on turn 1.

We've found that if you resolve a Necropotence with 35+ life, it's usually strong to necro for approximately half your life total each turn. This gives you strong dig and acceleration while also having a safety net in case you are disrupted.

Plunge into Darkness is best when cast for 10+, but be sure to weigh your need to trade life for card advantage afterward.

Ad Nauseam should be cast with the intent to win shortly after. Stopping around 4 to 8 life is usually ideal so you have life to pay for tutors, Probe, mana, etc.

You can play Silence in an opponents upkeep, and then follow it up with an Ad Nauseam in their end step. People might be hesitant to counter an upkeep Silence.

Halimar Excavator and Tazri play around Elesh Norn.

I've been markedly impressed by how these budget builds are performing; they're still goldfishing turn 3/4/5 wins, often with protection. The main things that are lost in the budgetization are: reliability of color production, fast mana, and versatility/strength of the removal/counter suite. The psuedo-uncuttable "core": the 3 allies, Misthollow & Scourge, Demonic Consultation, Necropotence, Ad Nauseam. The budget builds compensate for land colors by playing an array of 2-mana dorks (e.g. Sylvan Caryatid) that fix mana; it compensates for the lack of costly tutors by playing additional cantrips (e.g. Sleight of Hand) and 3-CMC transmute cards (e.g. Drift of Phantasms).

I really want to highlight the $420 build. It has a really good mix of features: a decent manabase, is singleton for Tainted Pact, runs most of the mid-cost tutors/draw, has enough fast mana for strong Ad Naus, has shifted out of red, and has evolved out of most of the 2-mana dorks.


- Ancient Tomb
- Sterling Grove

+ Laboratory Maniac
+ Gilded Drake

Still going strong.


- Drift of Phantasms
- Toxic Deluge
- Cyclonic Rift

+ Forest
+ Fire Covenant
+ Negate

Drift has been fine, but I'd like to slot in another land, particularly a basic for anti-Moon/B2B. Deluge into Fire Covenant seems like pretty much just an upgrade, as it's instant and doesn't kill the on-board FC mana. I've literally never overloaded CycRift in this deck, and I think it should go for more relevant interaction; Negate's next up.

Orcish Lumberjack is on the radar.


Food Chain Tazri stands out as a powerful and resilient new combo deck. It has emerged as one of (if not the) fastest deck in EDH while able to voraciously fight through interaction.

Its a similar deck if you are used to playing Storm, Sharuum or Prossh, and you want to try something new without going too far from your comfort zone. The puzzle-solving mentality is one of the reason why Tazri is an fun and attractive pick.

Tazri would like us to thank her grandpappy u/tw0handt0uch for inspiration.

In our opinion, FCT stands very well in the current metagame, and we hope to see others play and improve the deck in the games to come. In our testing, our focus was on speed and quality of openers, so other variants of the deck are largely open for exploration.

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You've been visited by the demonic consultant Storm Crow! Upcrow FCT to the next trophic level or Food Chain will always be beneath your allies!


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Date added 1 year
Last updated 1 week
Splash colors WR

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 1.67
Tokens 1/1 Spirit, 1/1 Bird
Folders EDH Inspiration, Bookmarks, Cool Stuff, Cool EDH Decks, Commander Folder, EDH, edh, edh ideas, Tazri, awesome decks, See all 163
Top rank #3 on 2016-08-24
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