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Storm of Riddles - Unesh EDH

Commander / EDH* Control Mono-Blue Tribal



Nine months ago, I posted my take on a mono-blue deck. When one thinks of a mono-blue deck in EDH, commanders like Baral, Chief of Compliance, Talrand, Sky Summoner, and Urza, Lord High Artificer usually comes to mind. Yet, the idea of a Sphinx tribal deck has always piqued my curiosity more than any other generals. So, nine months ago, I've posted this deck.

Since then, it has evolved. I may not have posted any updates about the change, and for those that may have followed this deck, I am sorry for not posting any updates.

But now, I can say with ease that this deck is my main deck. Unesh, Criosphinx Sovereign, is my main general for EDH. Because of that, most people in my play group has known me for being "that f*ckin blue player," and I don't mind. Not at all.

Anyways, enough with my rambling. I think it's time I share how the deck works.

Deck's strategy:

We want to get out as many sphinx as we can with Unesh on the field, then build up card advantage using Unesh's ETB triggers. Ultimately this is a tribal deck a control shell is also used to help us get to our goal.

How the deck wins:

There are a few ways in which the deck can win, all of which mainly includes drawing cards. We can certainly just alpha strike people out of the game, as most decks won't run as many evasive creatures like we will. However, there are other ways we can win. Those win-cons will be discussed later.


  1. Most creatues has a high power/toughness, along with flying; this allows, in most situations, to disrupt most player's chance to attack us.
  2. As long as Unesh is on the field, Unesh will provide card advantage to us, for each time a Sphinx enters the battlefield, we get card selection via Unesh's 'Fact or Fiction' trigger.
  3. Playing mono-blue, we have multiple options for Win-Con.


  1. Doesn't play well against those playing a go-wide strategy (Selesnya Token, Kiki-Jiki, etc)
  2. The commander, like most of the creatures in this deck, is mana-intensive; with a high cmc, we need ways to produce more mana to play him efficiently.
  3. Unesh is the center point of the deck's strategy; if he was to be removed numerous times, the chances of winning becomes slim.

Game Plan:

- Early Game We want ways to ramp up on mana at this point. The best way we can do this is to have mana rocks in our opening hand. During this time, we want to access whatever threat is coming our way, and prepare for that. This deck has some ways we can answer threats, especially with counter spells. Would we really be playing a mono-blue deck if we played without counter spells? We also have some creatures that can come out rather early in the game, including Vexing Sphinx, Sphinx of Foresight, and if we are lucky to Surge it out, Jwar Isle Avenger. They can provide us with some defense in the early game, but they can also be used in the later game.

- Mid Game Around this time we should be able to cast Unesh. However, it could be possible that someone will have a way to deal with him, such as a counter spell, Path to Exile, and so on. If we haven't ran into our Lightning Greaves by then, we should leave up some mana to either counter whatever is comming our way or, if we have nothing in hand, bluff a Counterspell. However, with Unesh's ETB trigger, we should have a counter spell in hand, if we are close to one. Once Unesh is on the battlefield, this is when we can really start to build our board state. Our sphinxes should be cheaper now, so casting them won't be a problem by this time. We should also keep in mind that soon we should have one of our win-conditions ready to be implemented. We may not win around this time, but as long as things are going well, we should be close.

- Late Game By now things should be working in our favor. We should be able to interact with most people's game plan, fill the board, maybe even recover if there was a boardwipe; this is because we have ways to shuffle our graveyard back into the deck. It should also be at this point we are drawing near to one of our win-cons. One of the most commmon ways we can win this is by decking out with Laboratory Maniac or Jace, Wielder of Mysteries on the field, the latter of the two should be easier to keep on the field. Once either of the two is on the field, we can just storm off, draw out our whole deck, and win that way.

Win conditions:

So I briefly described one way we can win, but what are the ways this deck can win for us? Well, let's see:

1) The Maniacs: We have both Laboratory Maniac and Jace, Wielder of Mysteries in our deck. This deck can draw out our whole deck easily, so we need to take advantage of that. Otherwise, we'd be in danger of losing by decking out.

2) Straight Flush (sorta): Do you like poker? Do you like seeing the look of your opponents' face as they stare down the barrel, knowing you're about to pull the trigger? Well, I have good news for you! One of the creatures in this deck is also a win-con: Atemsis, All-Seeing. With her, as long as our hand is filled with cards with different cmc, we can make an opponent lose the game, even if their life total is OVER 9000!!! All we have to do is connect our attack to that opponent, and when damage is dealt, we have our own showdown! A good ol' "Read it and weep!" should suffice as your opponent realize they have lost to a mini game of poker.

3) Voltron, Assemble: We can also use Unesh as a voltron commander if we were to have one equipment on the field, Empyrial Plate. With this on our commander, it won't take long for us to build enough card advantage to buff our commander. Then, as long as the defending player has no way to block, we just deal enough combat damage to take them out of the game!

4) Good ol' Fashion Beatdown: If most fails, we can simply beat the living s*** out of our opponents using our sphinxes. Just keeping swinging at an opponent and hope for the best that you kill them off with an alpha strike.


Updates Add


91% Casual


Top Ranked
Date added 1 year
Last updated 5 months

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Rarity (main - side)

9 - 0 Mythic Rares

41 - 0 Rares

18 - 0 Uncommons

6 - 0 Commons

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 3.98
Tokens 2/2 Manifest, 5/3 Zombie Sphinx, Copy Clone, 3/3 Frog Lizard, 2/2 Bird
Folders Uncategorized, New deck ideas, Of Interest, EDH, Fun Decks, Can't Lose, Commanders, Cool Decks
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Revision 11 See all

5 months ago)

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