Competitive multiplayer EDH Splinter Twin - I've been playing this list, more or less, for close to a year now and while I keep tweaking the configuration I've become really happy with the end result. Twin seems to occasionally pop up in cEDH conversations, but there's never been a full writeup done for the deck and EndStepTop keeps bugging me to put one together, sooo:

Kynaios and Tiro or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Combo.

"But why Kynaios and Tiro?"
"There must be a different general to use."
"Wouldn't five-color just be better?"

Don't sweat it chickpea, the boys are just here for the show.

Reasons You Might Enjoy This Deck

  • You like going infinite
  • You like winning out of nowhere in one quick series of spells
  • You like playing mind games with your opponents over critical cards
  • You played Modern twin and you still feel salty

Reasons You Might Not Enjoy This Deck

  • You don't like combo
  • You like controlling the table
  • You don't like playing without using your commander
  • You played Modern twin and you still feel salty

Real talk - UWR(g) isn't always consistent. I've closed games with this deck right out of the gate, but I've also sat on the same half of the combo for several turns in a row without a real out. Sometimes you just don't draw what you need, but other games you and the deck are just in sync. Right now I'm still happiest with what White and Red bring to the table, but I might try other color combinations in the future.

Card Choices

We all know Splinter Twin, we all know the kind of results it put up for years in Modern and that one time at Eternal Weekend in Philly. Unfortunately, we can't run four-ofs, but that's just an excuse to get creative:

The goal is to combine one of the first group with one of the second, make a billion dudes, and kill everyone. Simple right? Simple.
The cards in the first half were (mostly) selected because they have flash, allowing you to leave mana up for other shenanigans and then win across your opponents end step into your own turn (end step, flash exarch, untap, upkeep, draw, twin, win).

Birthing Pod deserves it's own primer. In fact, I'm sure it already has its own primer. So what's it doing here? Turns out Pod chains are 100% premium gasoline. Here's the default example:

2 Drop > Pestermite or Deceiver Exarch, untapping Pod > Felidar Guardian, blinking Pod > Karmic Guide, reanimating Guardian and blinking Pod > Kiki, copy Karmic Guide, make a billion copy cats

Turns out this works from any 2-4 drop in the deck. There are a few tricky chains that you need to navigate if you lose a link in the chain, but Wash14 has a really solid 5-color Pod primer available here.

The biggest problem with half your combo only being two(ish) cards deep is inconsistency. It continues to be the bane of the deck, but I like playing with a handicap and maybe an unconditional tutor just makes things too easy.

These are MVPs 1 and 2. Each one can single-handedly close out a game by chaining into Kiki Jiki, copying the Recruiter, and finding the other half of your combo. With Sneak Attack you can do it all at Instant speed for RRR. You go Glen Coco.

These are the only other real tutor effects in the list, with Intuition being the top contender. My go-to Intuition pile is Kiki, Twin, and Argivian Restoration. It's basically just a three mana instant speed Demonic Tutor sometimes...god I wish Gifts Ungiven was legal. The rest are all still excellent card selection - I've cut Gamble after having it kick me in the nuts more times than I can count. It's the main reason why I don't play Wild Research - that shit's scary.

I'm just here to draw cards.

These two are the only other PWs to really make the cut for me. Dack is just nuts and Nahiri's +2 makes her harder to kill while fixing your draws and her ult lets you grab half your combo for the kill. JTMS was just too slow and too easy to kill. 9 times out of 10 I was just paying 4 mana to Brainstorm.

Sometimes the best way to get around a counterspell is to walk right into it and then come back immediately after with the win.

I used to run more in terms of recursion but generally I've found that if I try to go off once, then fail, then try to go off a second time and fail again, well, I'm really just out of the game at that point. Then's about the time I hard cast Numot and just start griefing.

I try not to run more permission than necessary to protect the combo turn. These are what I feel are the bare-minimum you need to get by.

"But MrKrabs, why are you running Chant over Silence? The fog can't really be worth it!"

You're right, pretend voice, but you take one look at this and tell me it's not a better foil than this. Yes it's a dumb reason. Yes I stand by it.

I don't like playing a ton of removal in a combo deck, but sometimes /u/EndStepTop jams a cursed totem down your throat turn 1 and nobody else wants to man up and take care of the problem. Here's what's on the menu tonight:

Before you get started on Path vs Swords, I own 6 playsets of WPN Promo Path to Exiles. Used to be 8 playsets. There's simply no prettier way to exile something for just one white mana.

Rocks are rocks. Everyone has their preference on what they want to run and what they want them to do. Some people like to play Null Rod and make people like me cry. I run 15 rocks to help the deck build up speed.
I like to keep things more simple, usually. People like to run too many non-basics. I'd prefer to just run fetches, fetchables, and basics, but Command Tower is admittedly useful in 3+ colors.
A big part of card selection is heavily dependent on your meta, and there are quite a few choices I made here to fit the environment I normally play the deck in. Here are a few changes you might make to fit a different meta:

  • If you play against a lot of stax or Artifact-heavy combo, cards like Hurkyl's Recall and Vandalblast might be in order.
  • In more Creature-heavy metas, the addition of Surpreme Verdict and possibly Wrath of God.
  • For a control-dominated meta I'd actually not recommend more permission but more recursion, to help you assemble the combo through disruption.
  • Depending on the manabases you run in to, Back to Basics, Blood Moon, and Ruination are all good options.
  • I used to run Armageddon, Ravages of War, and Cataclysm. Not sure what meta they're best against, but they do make a funny Intuition pile.

Game Plan

Early game you want to go off right away, so hands with the combo or hands that get you to the combo quickly are choice. Sometimes you just have the nuts and can win on turns 2-4, often through disruption.

Barring a quick steal you want to stay under the radar. Try not to make enemies and quietly pull all the pieces together while gathering information on who has what sort of permission and removal (people looooove to advertise their permission and removal). Let other people fight to stay in charge. The only disruption you really care about is instant-speed removal and permission - taxing effects and board wipes don't really bother you since you only need to cast two spells to win. When you're convinced that you have all the pieces you need and the permission to protect it, kill everyone.

That said, this plan doesn't work against stax. When facing decks like those you're in a race to the combo, because you wont be winning the long game against heavy stax effects. You can still win these games, but you have to win them quickly before they can start hurting your board position.

That's all there is to it, really. The deck doesn't do much else besides try to go off and it's best in multiplayer games, since it's excellent at keeping quiet until the turn you win. Good luck, have fun, make a billion dudes, kill your friends.



NoSoyYucateco says... #1

No Restoration Angel? You have several good targets for it, and it's another Kiki/Twin piece.

April 11, 2017 7:33 a.m.

MrKrabs says... #2

That's a fine suggestion and I ran it in the past when this was just a UWR deck, but it can't untap Birthing Pod or reset itself (for Splinter Twin) which makes it less valuable than Felidar Guardian or Zealous Conscripts in the end.

If I feel like I need another copy of that half of the combo it would be the first one to add, though. The problem is, you start diluting card quality the more you run.

There's also an argument for running it over Village Bell-Ringer, since Bell-Ringer doesn't untap Pod either, but Resto doesn't combo with Twin, so...

April 11, 2017 11:23 a.m.

NoSoyYucateco says... #3

Right. I see what you're saying. I think the dilution is an issue, but I have always seen Restoration Angel as such a versatile card. It's come in handy in a lot of ways I haven't expected it to.

If for some reason you were unable to combo off (say, Kiki and Twin are dead or exiled, for example,) it still has some very relevant uses. Like re-snapping that Snapcaster Mage, or even flickering Karmic Guide to grab Kiki from the graveyard, if he were in there.

April 11, 2017 1:22 p.m.

NoSoyYucateco says... #4

Oops, never mind. It can't hit Karmic Guide. It can hit Zealous Conscripts, which can be very useful.

April 11, 2017 1:27 p.m.

coreman says... #5

So few questions, First up... What are the thoughts on running a commander partner pair that could help? The really big one being Thrasios, Triton Hero, a card draw outlet in the command zone seems more beneficial. Additionally you are running enough artifacts such that Akiri, Line-Slinger may be a notable threat.

Next, A few card questions... -Arcane Denial vs Delay? This is a more recent one to me but it Delay has been better unless you are really wanting the card draw from Arcane Denial. Thoughts?
-Path to Exile vs Swords to Plowshares? Wouldn't life be better for you to give away than the possible ramp?
-Orim's Chant vs Silence? Any big reason for Orim's here? Silence hits all opponents, same could be said with a Grand Abolisher but I think I like the insant better.

April 11, 2017 2:50 p.m.

MrKrabs says... #6

coreman -
Per the commander, I've already got the Thrasios deck I've been playing and you know how I am about that sort of thing.
Also, K&T theotetically nets me cards without any additional mana input, even if it's technically card disadvantage.
Akiri seems...underwhelming, at best. I don't want to bother spending mana on anything that isn't killing my opponents or getting me cards to kill my opponents.

Delay vs Arcane Denial seems kind of trivial in this, since counters are really only used to protect the critical turn in this. If I'm spending a counter outside of that turn then I'm already behind and I'd rather have it replace itself and give someone cards. It's worth testing, I suppose.

I address the Path and Chant concerns in the Card Selection portion of the writeup and I think I've mentioned it in conversation - I know they're worse. It's an aesthetic choice. If anyone else was building this deck I'd encourage using the other two unless they're weird like me.

April 11, 2017 4:15 p.m.

MrKrabs says... #7

NoSoyYucateco -

Right, and I'm not saying Resto is a bad card. Problem is, it only combos with Kiki-Jiki. Felidar Guardian also combos with Saheeli and Pod, and that's just enough to make it worth more to me than Resto in this current list. If I wanted to add Resto back in one of the non-combo cards would have to get cut and I think that damages the consistency a bit too much.

Resto-ing a Recruiter does sound sweet, though (god I wish it could flicker Karmic Guide), so it might make its way back in some day.

April 11, 2017 4:32 p.m.

Philo_Lij says... #8

+1 for the Namesake Alone!! I feel that you have more chances to make puns in the intro though ;(

April 11, 2017 5:56 p.m.

TempestShadow says... #9

April 20, 2017 7:33 a.m.

MrKrabs says... #10

TempestShadow if Bounding Krasis untapped permanents instead of creatures this deck would literally become 10% better, but instead it just breaks my heart.

If I could include Woodland Bellower at the top of my Pod chain and use it to get Bounding Krasis to untap Pod? These are the things I dream about at night.

April 20, 2017 1 p.m.

coreman says... #11

MrKrabs: Soo... at the same cmc as the Bounding Krasis.... Derevi, Empyrial Tactician? It does that but at 3 colors instead of two. It does a lot more as well if you need to get there.

April 20, 2017 5:14 p.m.

MrKrabs says... #12

Woodland Bellower only fetches nonlegendary :(

This is why I'm always bitching about WoTC printing a nonlegendary Derevi for me haha.

April 20, 2017 5:25 p.m.

lil_cheez says... #13

Midnight Guard is weak on it's own but can be a Splinter Twint combo piece...

Presence of Gond can work also, but I think only with the guard

The new card Combat Celebrant is also a combo piece, have a look on him!

April 21, 2017 12:38 p.m.

lil_cheez says... #14

Also maybe Goblin Bombardment, Impact Tremors and Purphoros, God of the Forge may work as backup wincons if you can't attack for some reason

April 21, 2017 12:41 p.m.

MrKrabs says... #15

Presence of Gond combos with Intruder Alarm, which I think I'd re-add to the list before adding Midnight Guard. The unfortunate part of Presence is that the tokens don't have haste.
More often than not, if I go off and can't kill everyone, then my stuff is all going to die before my next turn.

April 21, 2017 12:42 p.m.

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Compare to inventory
Date added 2 weeks
Last updated 4 days

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 2.51
Tokens Dack, Jace, 1/1 Bird
Folders Other's EDH Decks, sigarda, Wanty want, Witty McWittley's Wittle Folder Wit' Witty Names, EDH Deck's I love
Top rank #18 on 2017-04-20
Views 1764

Revision 2 (1 week ago)

-1 Delay maybe
-1 Restoration Angel maybe

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