Midrange decks in combo-happy meta

Commander (EDH) forum

Posted on April 23, 2019, 8:08 p.m. by thewyzman

Initially my LGS meta was casual, but a couple competitive players pushed the meta and forced it to become more of a who's-who of combo/control decks... but NOT cEDH (at least for the majority of us).

Now my dilemma: I used to play Mayael the Anima , but eventually converted it to Omnath, Locus of Rage after briefly dabbling in xenagos god of revel dragons.

Omnath, Locus of Rage is really fun, but once he's removed a few times, he's uncastable and the deck just flops helplessly.

With the next set giving cards like Vivien's Arkbow and God-Eternal Rhonas , Mayael the Anima is just screaming for another chance!

The fact remains that the control-heavy meta I'm in is simply unforgiving for decks like the aforementioned. All this said, is there ANY hope of ever succeeding in building a mildly competitive deck around Omnath, Locus of Rage or Mayael the Anima ? Again, I'm not talking cEDH-level, but something mid-rangey with a couple win-cons available to hang with the control decks.

Vexing Shusher is your friend.

Also Pyroblast , Red Elemental Blast , Guttural Response , Mana Tithe , Lapse of Certainty , Burnout . If they're running targetted removal, Rebuff the Wicked , Avoid Fate , and Dawn Charm .

They wanna play control? Control them right back.

April 23, 2019 8:27 p.m.

thewyzman says... #3

While blue is certainly the most controlling of colors, it's really cards like Path to Exile , Utter End -type spells, and wraths like Wrath of God and Toxic Deluge that set the deck so far behind in tempo. It makes me consider things like Ranger's Guile attractive, or even Gods Willing in Mayael. Before I deconstructed her, I tried going stax-y with cards like Eidolon of Rhetoric to slow my opponents down to my speed, and Dauntless Escort to wrath-proof my boards.

Mayael aside, Omnath, Locus of Rage is in her stead currently as my top commander. While I am fighting the urge to rebuild her, I would still love to know if ANYONE is having any success with either commander in relatively competitive metas like mine?

April 23, 2019 9:07 p.m.

ZendikariWol says... #4

Problem (and the reason my beautiful meta doesn’t combo) is, against combo you have two options; stopping it before it goes off or countering during. The latter is not possible for all combos, so basically... the only way to fight combo is to play a heaping load of removal.

April 23, 2019 9:11 p.m.

DuTogira says... #5

ZendikariWol i mean... you can also always kill the combo player with aggro before they can get their combo off the ground. In lieu of that, anti-combo cards such as Cindervines and Grafdigger's Cage are very good. Choke and Blood Moon are particularly strong options in Omnath, Locus of Rage . The counter to combo isn't always to just play control... but rather to just slow them down long enough to kill them first with a good old slugfest, which Omnath should be able to do with relative ease.
Out of curiosity thewyzman, how crazy is your omnath deck? Are you already doing shenanigans like Scapeshift and such to essentially fill the board with elementals the second omnath sticks? If so, them wiping the board should basically kill whomever played the wrath off of omnath triggers. Between choice hate cards and "i win" buttons of your own... combo should never be the end all be all of your meta. Unless you get to cEDH levels of course where nothing that costs more than 4 mana is playable unless it basically wins the game upon resolution.

April 23, 2019 9:40 p.m. Edited.

You can definitely make Omnath, Locus of Rage competitive. I have a friend who plays it.

Ramp is your best friend. And Sac Outlets are your best friend along with some wrath effects.

Purphoros, God of the Forge works wonders in the deck, especially along side the staples of Avenger of Zendikar and Rampaging Baloths .

Cards that you need to make the deck function better are Explore type effects: Oracle of Mul Daya , Azusa, Lost but Seeking , Exploration , Explore , Enter the Unknown , Journey of Discovery , Mina and Denn, Wildborn , Summer Bloom , Wayward Swordtooth ... These work to great effect in getting the most out of Omnath's triggered ability and might hinder your opponents' plans of sweeping the board.

Also, you should be running more lands than the usual EDH deck because you want to be able to keep playing lands.

Recursion is also what will assist in the control metas: Regrowth , Eternal Witness , Den Protector , Greenwarden of Murasa , Recollect , The Mending of Dominaria ... These will help you maintain use of the cards that get removed. Also it allows you to let your general go to Graveyard and get it back to cast it for regular CMC.

Some form of protection is necessary: Heroic Intervention , Ranger's Guile , Blossoming Defense , Lightning Greaves ...

As for sac outlets, you have a great one in Goblin Bombardment and Greater Good and also Ashnod's Altar and Phyrexian Altar .

You could also use some triggers upon a creature entering the battlefield: Electropotence , Impact Tremors , In the Web of War , Mana Echoes , Warstorm Surge , Purphoros, God of the Forge , Colossal Majesty , Elemental Bond ...

And of course you could use some of the staples: Sylvan Library , Krosan Grip , Constant Mists , Beast Within , Word of Seizing ...

As for some sweepers: Chandra's Ignition and Star of Extinction are good ones. Hour of Devastation does some work. Insurrection is usually a good game finisher.

The world is your "oyster" good sir! So have at it. And happy shuffling. Hope this helps.

April 24, 2019 12:02 a.m.

thewyzman says... #7

My Om deck is here (plus or minus a card or two, I haven't updated the list in a while):


Commander / EDH thewyzman


I love that the deck punishes people for trying to wipe a board full of elementals, but TBH it's extremely rare... extremely. It seems everyone who knows how to play Magic knows to remove Om before wrathing, which is why protecting him is so important.

When I ran Mayael, Ruric Thar, the Unbowed was always an auto-include, though it wasn't unusual to run into Mayael triggers where it was between Ruric and, say, Avacyn, Angel of Hope . Power turns like those usually pull a Clever Impersonator and bad feels for me.

Control metas just REALLY put a damper on playing decks like Omnath and Mayael, sadly. I just wish there was a way around it all without spending a hundred bucks on cards I don't have.

April 24, 2019 5:03 a.m.

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