Whose a better Reanimator/Aristocrats Commander (75%)? [Jarad VS. Varolz VS. Izoni VS Savra(?)]]

Commander (EDH) forum

Posted on July 13, 2019, 7:14 p.m. by Kaneki___Ken

Hey all.

I'm working on a Golgari reanimator/aristocrats deck, and have 3 generals in mind as the commander.

First is Jarad, Golgari Lich Lord :

Bonus cool points since I have the duel deck foil, he's a pretty fun commander. He can hit for a ton both from sacing something like Lord of Extinction or just swinging himself. Only problems are his cost is restrictive, he does nothing from just ETBing so no IMMEDIATE value, I've built him about 3 times before but always for some reason, usually a large string of loses, deconstruct his deck, and he's restrictive in his casting cost.

Next we have Varolz, the Scar-Striped :

His scavenge ability might not be the best for reanimator, but his cheap cost to cast and free sac outlet in the command zone seems like a force to be reckoned with. Problem is, like I said his scavenge ability isn't the strongest for a reanimator deck, and just a sac-outlet in the command zone won't win any awards for going for a non-cEDH 75% deck that's not running Protean Hulk .

Finally, Izoni, Thousand-Eyed

Newest member of the golgari guild, she does a great thing of making token fodder on ETB, so no matter what I should get value out of her. There's also the fact that she's another sac outlet like Varolz, albeit not a free one, that draws us cards which is always useful. Problem is again the restrictive casting cost on top of her costing 6 just to start. I know in green it shouldn't be too much of a problem, I think in the deck I have around 13 accelerants so far, so I'm running a few less lands at around 33. If I do Izoni I'll certainly add more lands to more reliably cast her.

I'm not really looking at any other Golgari commanders, these are ones I own, but I guess a case could be made for Savra, Queen of the Golgari :

A Dictate of Erebos effect on a commander seems good, not the mention some lifegain for those grindy matchups. Problem is she's sorta fragile and can't do anything right away unless you already have sac outlets on the board. I'm a little less in favor of her, especially since I don't currently own one, but I could be swayed.

I'm not really interested in Meren, since 3 others in my playgroup play her, and things like Slimefoot, the Stowaway are a bit too low in terms of power in my opinion. Budget wise, I'm not looking to spend too much, but I have a few expensive cards such as Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth , Demonic Tutor , and Phyrexian Altar .

EDIT: Going for a 75% deck so I don't think I'll run a deck like Protean Varolz, as good as it is.

SynergyBuild says... #2

Izoni actually has card draw, making it pretty easy to abuse, but Jarad is the easiest to build IMO.

I'd go with Varolz Hulk if we were talking sheer power level, then Meren, then Izoni, but I assume many would put Jarad over Izoni.

July 13, 2019 7:25 p.m.

Kaneki___Ken says... #3


Sorry I didn't make it quite clear in my post, I'm going for something around 75%, so while you're probably right about power level with Varolz Protean Hulk is probably the best, it's probably too fast for my meta. I'm not trying to get my friends to hate me haha.

So I guess by your list of power you'd think I should go with Izoni then?

July 13, 2019 7:29 p.m.

SynergyBuild says... #4

Sure, however I want to know if you are going for Aristocrats or Reanimator. Elf tribal can abuse Izoni too.

July 13, 2019 7:32 p.m.

Kaneki___Ken says... #5


I plan on going for a mix. I want to reanimate cards like Avenger of Zendikar and big token making creatures, plus some just good stuff big creatures like the new Vilis, Broker of Blood . I have some cards for elf tribal, might just add some of those in for some good ramp (Looking at you Priest of Titania . I'm not sure if mixing these themes will be too big of a problem, I'm hoping they won't.

July 13, 2019 7:35 p.m.

SynergyBuild says... #6

For straight aristocrats, trying to make and sacrifice a lot of tokens, Mazirek, Kraul Death Priest , but Izoni can have a longer-term graveyard theme, not just a combat/token theme.

For going past GB, Karador, Teneb, The Mimeoplasm, Muldrotha, Gyrus, Thrasios/Ravos, etc. are all sweet and interesting builds for graveyard-based decks.

Idk much about the archetype mix of reanimator/aristocrats, so I would recommend asking another player, hope I have helped you out!

July 13, 2019 7:43 p.m. Edited.

Kaneki___Ken says... #7

I guess what I'm trying to say is a graveyard tokens theme now that I think about it. Sure, having a few reanimation cards will be nice, but it won't be the focal point of the deck.

I think I'll stay golgari, just since I'm trying to save a bit of money on lands and going 3 color or higher would make me want to get at least all the shocks.

With your reasoning I think I've decided on Izoni, she'll probably end up combining what I want better than the other 3.

Thanks for your help!

July 13, 2019 7:46 p.m.

ZendikariWol says... #8

Well first off, are these the only commanders you’re considering or are you open to other options? Storrev, Devkarin Lich could be quite a but of fun you’re looking for something a lil more casual. Gyrus, Waker of Corpses is... not terrible ig?, Karador, Ghost Chieftain is awesome, Muldrotha, the Gravetide adds a lot of variety (especially with her new subcommander Yarok, the Desecrated !),

Is Jarad, Golgari Lich Lord really that hard to cast?? How much land ramp/colored rocks are you running? Turn 2 Golgari Signet or Rampant Growth or Nature's Lore gets him out on turn 3 for sure. Not to mention any fetch. There’s a litany of spells and rocks that can ensure you can drop him 100% of the time on turn 4.

Varolz, the Scar-Striped may be better than he seems. He basically transforms redundancy into a win condition. If you have Acidic Slime and Reclamation Sage that’s two counters. Any cards that you’re not using? Make ‘em power and toughness. Still, he’d suit ya better in the 99 of... actually, Storrev, Devkarin Lich . But he’s apparently not on your radar and Varolz is not a reanimator.

July 13, 2019 8:56 p.m.

Kaneki___Ken says... #9


He was not on my radar actually.

The planeswalker clause is interesting as I am planning on running 3 or 4.

I am looking for more casual than cEDH,but do you think he can stand up at 75% EDH? If so he’s definitely a new , and strong, contender for leading this deck.

July 13, 2019 9:51 p.m.

ZendikariWol says... #10

Well, Kaneki___Ken, this all depends... how important is it that aristocrats and reanimator be the only real themes of the deck?

The way I see Storrev probably going is voltron- trying to win by commander damage while accumulating value from etb triggers (a la Ravenous Chupacabra ) and from planeswalkers (of which there are many).

But to do that, you have to make opponents not want to block Storrev. How? Equipments, Auras, and murdering blockers by recurring ETBs and planeswalker abilities.

One of the biggest upsides that I really underestimated was how much value those walkers’ll give you. Because 1) Doubling Season , ult, reanimate, repeat. 2) just the minuses can be really strong for some of them. I encourage you to look into it on Scryfall. Go ahead.

I would say that it may not be super competitive, and it’s possible you may not be able to get it up to 75%, but the bizarre blend of voltron, reanimator, and aristocrats would make Storrev an incredibly unique and interesting commander. Definitely something the like of which your group has never seen.

(also worth a mention- your group is gonna seriously underestimate this guy at first glance!)

July 14, 2019 12:38 a.m.

I'm literally about to collapse I'm so exhausted, so I can't make my full case right now, but I'll return tomorrow to flesh this out. But. Savra, Queen of the Golgari is the best Golgari commander, and I will die on that hill.

July 14, 2019 4:20 a.m.

ZendikariWol says... #12

PhotogenicParasympathetic, I will say that Savra is a lot of fun. I think Meren is more competitive, but my brew would be a real sad time without the Queen of the Golgari in my 99.

July 14, 2019 8:51 a.m.

Sarkhan420X says... #13

what do you mean by "75% deck"? if you're referring to the competitive meter on this site, it doesn't actually mean anything. a deck could show as 100% competitive and still be a bad deck.

July 15, 2019 1:01 a.m.

Kaneki___Ken says... #14


75% Is a term that means not cEDH but highly tuned.

July 15, 2019 2:57 p.m.

Kaneki___Ken says... #15


I'm trying to link to a post that explains it better, but it's not working.

If you look up 75% edh it should come up.

July 15, 2019 2:59 p.m.

geekmp3 says... #16

Savra was my first dive into Golgari shenanigans until Meren showed up. As a lover of all things Meren I can totally understand your aversion to her in the command zone. I'm here to make the case for Savra. She's got an edict built in and lifegain to protect from the board-hate she will inevitably produce for you BUT unlike Meren your opponents won't see it coming. Sometimes I'd just grind green creatures into a huge life total to buffer the board swings, outlast. Golgari does one thing very well and that is rebuild. We're efficient and waste nothing. If you're truly looking for an aristocrats/edicts commander (and don't want to go Ghave, that animal) then I'd suggest Savra.

July 16, 2019 9:13 a.m.

Eternal thanks for pointing out that Storrev gets planeswalkers too...that is life-changing. i think there's a lot you can do with Golgari, even if you want to run it a certain way (i.e. make dudes, sacrifice, repeat). Savra makes sure you get value when you sacrifice, Jarad is basically a combo win as long as you can get a creature big enough (which you should always be able to do...he's always felt more combo than 75% to me for that reason), Mazirek turns the creatures you don't sac into win conditions, and Izoni makes dudes to sac, as well as providing a slightly expensive sac outlet. I run Glissa, SKullbriar, and Mazirek as my Golgari commanders, although each one is very different. I think I would go with Izoni if I had to pick one for this style of deck, but I truly don't feel that there is a single right answer to this question.

December 26, 2019 5:10 a.m.

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