The Great Machine of Evolution

The Machine Orthodoxy's truth is as follows:

"The last of the Not-Whole shall be discovered, though our eyeholes wince at their hideousness. Their bodies shall be absorbed and their imperfection shall be purged. The Machine Orthodoxy shall engorge the Not-Whole and their deficient isolation shall be obliterated in the Unity. Only then shall the last wounds in the Circle be healed. Only then shall this world compleat itself."

—Izathel, High Chancellor

Your opponents are the personification of the Not-Whole: those who cling to their inherent imperfection and deny the truth of sublime compleation. If you wish to spread the glory of Phyrexia, and purge the weakness of your opponents from the inside out - then this is the deck, and more importantly - Commander for you. Atraxa is a force to be reckoned with - she posesses enough keywords to overshadow most creatures, but her true strength lies in her last keyword: Proliferate. This ability is a central theme of the deck which incorporates counters to bolster  Flip the power of your own forces or weaken those of your opponents. The inclusion of stax permanents with Fading counters help control the battlefield while your main wincon - Infect counters bring your opponents closer to the truth of the whole, of one-ness, of compleation.

This deck has Johnny and Vorthos influences that manifest as a lot of different interactions that all play off of each other. The inclusion of the Praetors are mostly for flavor (as each had an active hand in Atraxa's creation) but are also part of the strategy of creating a "Soft Lock" (See Slang: Lockdown) on my opponent's boardstate - limiting their options while allowing Phyrexia to progress unimpeded.

Infect is the primary wincon of this deck, which typically functions like a slow acting Thallium poison - damage to your opponents may seem small at first but will quickly add up. It's likely your opponents will have decks that focus on dealing 40 points of damage, or 21 points of Commander damage to their opponent to achieve their wincon - you are only counting to 10 (See rule 104.3d). Infect damage cannot be removed, transferred, or healed - Phyrexia's touch is indelible. However, it's likely you'll be the only infect deck at the table, which will isolate you. In summary, while you have to deal far less damage to your opponents, your damage is unique, and rarely can anyone else can contribute to it.

This is where the deck's sub-themes of counters and stax can assist. Most infect creatures have low power and toughness, +1/+1 counters simply help solve that problem while having synergy with the proliferation of Fading counters. Specifically, the counters on Parallax Wave , Parallax Tide , and Tangle Wire provide a good amount of board control when combined with any Praetor - creating a soft lock that can award you precious time to proliferate the poison counters on your opponents.

To measure the deck's power level, I use the chart referenced in the video How to Power up your Commander deck by The Command Zone. From that video, I would guess that this deck fits well within the Focused category. It's meant to face upgraded Casual decks, Optimized decks, but will get absolutely destroyed by cEDH decks, and tear Jank decks to pieces too quickly. Also, I definitely advise you to watch the video referenced above - it's really good for helping you to communicate to other players what kind of deck you are working with.

There are no infinite combos in this deck. Instead, it functions with alot of interactions that build off of each other using Proliferate as the primary enabler.

A word of advice to potential players of this deck, and to all my fellow Infect players: Your attitude at the table matters - it's likely that you will be perceived as a thirsty Spike who is more concerned with wanting to win than actually playing Magic. Your opponents will likely focus on you early game, and target your boardstate heavily. Don't let that deter you, instead understand that you are playing Archenemy without all of the silly cards to help you (see Sliver Hate). Own the fact that you are Phyrexia incarnate, here to bring your opponents to compleation - have fun with that idea and embrace it. I try and manifest this idea by turning my game into something of a performance where I gleefully remind players that they are "One step closer to Phyrexia, and one step closer to compleation." with every proliferation of poison counters.

The most important aspect of playing infect is the social interaction you have with your opponents. If your attitude is negative - if you feel upset and frustrated because you got ganged up on then that feeling will dominate your experience for the game - which isn't fun. Don't fall into that trap , embrace all that attention and focus your opponents are giving you, because you are Phyrexia - you are the Villain that makes everyone else collectively crap their pants at the mere mentioning of your name. It's only natural that they come after you, and that's okay. Make sure you're having fun, because if not...what's the point in playing?

This deck is far from complete, and a constant work in progress. I hope one day there will be a viable infinite poison combo - or an infinite proliferation combo. But until the day Wizards prints cards to enable that functionality this is probably the best deck I can build that maintains the Phyrexian aesthetic I enjoy. I feel pretty lucky that Wizards printed Sword of Truth and Justice , as it was the perfect thing for this deck. However, what i'm really looking for them to print is an Enchantment or Artifact that would allow me to target a player or creature with poison counters in a fashion similar to how Lux Cannon functions. Fingers crossed, am I right? - Thank you for reading, and please proliferate the counters on the Upvote button if you enjoyed the deck and/or write up. Please check back often as I continue to upgrade the page.


Updates Add


After a few plays with this build I noticed more often than not I'm in a position where I have alot of mana and virtually nothing to spend it on - i'm lacking card draw. That's where Phyrexian Arena comes in, but at a cost - losing Simic Ascendancy is losing an alternate wincon and +1/+1 counter source. But I think the pluses outweigh the minuses - because what i'm gaining is great card advantage just at the cost of a measly little 1 point of life per turn. I'm hoping that if I get enough attacks in with my commander, the cumulative damage would be offset for the most part. There's also the amazing flavor that Arena adds to the deck which appeases my inner Vorthos. Let me know if you think this was a good move in the comments. All of you who are tracking this deck lol.


28% Casual

72% Competitive

Top Ranked
Date added 1 year
Last updated 13 hours

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 3.19
Tokens 0/1 Insect
Folders Mine, Interesting Decks to Study Better Later, infect, Commander, Planning to build, EDH builds, Decks, Really Awesome (and expensive) Decks, Cool Decks, Commander, See all 16
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Revision 62 See all

13 hours ago)

+1 Twilight Mire main
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