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Mina & Denn's Supermassive Landmass | Primer V-IKO

Commander / EDH Lands Primer Ramp RG (Gruul) Scapeshift Value Engine

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An optimized primer for an underrated lands matter commander.

"The rampaging Roil creates life out of the most volatile elements."

Wicked moving land engine that keeps on rolling

Hello there, and welcome to my Mina & Denn list.

This is currently the #1 Mina and Denn list on tappedout! Thanks to all who have up-voted this deck since its inception. I really appreciate it!

Origin

The extended format used to be my favorite format. And in those days, Aggro-Loam was one of my favorite decks. So since starting with commander I've been slowly gathering land-related cards for the inevitable land-centered commander deck: a deck where lands are not just a resource, but also the main weapon. And this is the result: my take at a land-recycle kind of commander deck, inspired by those glory days of Life from the Loam and Seismic Assault in Extended.

Deck Overview

The vision for the deck was to constantly be moving lands around from your hand, the board, and the grave, from and to all those 3 destinations, and gaining something from that displacement in the process via a trigger or activated ability. The dream is to chain many triggers to create some sort of wicked moving landmass engine that keeps on rolling until it all suddenly explodes in the faces of our opponents!

Mina and Denn, Wildborn fit very well with this mission, because they enable one of the loops on their own: getting more lands in play and getting them back into your hand. The latter is a nice mana-dump ability as well that will help the deck to always do stuff with all the lands it amasses (pun intended). We also get easy access to trample which is a nice bonus.

Of course there are other cool ways to use the commander, like re-using Mosswort Bridge a bunch of times, keeping around Glacial Chasm longer than you should while still being able to attack, bouncing Gruul Turf to always get your maximum landfall triggers, creating some tokens with Khalni Garden, or enabling several uses of Gaea's Cradle per turn. So just on their own Mina and Denn can make our lands a lot more hostile.

Grow Suppermassive

Grow Supermassive

The strategy of the deck is all about growing out of proportion out of nowhere: unpredictability and big tempo-swing plays. I want to make people think it’s quiet, and then suddenly turn their worlds upside down. To keep the deck unpredictable and to end up with a deck that keeps surprising to play, I included many different possible paths to victory:

  • There are a few "dot" like mechanics, like Omnath, Locus of Rage and Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle, that can deal massive damage with all the lands moving around.
  • Several land-related cards generate tokens, like Rampaging Baloths or Avenger of Zendikar. Combined with an Overrun-like spell these can take out a player by surprise. I decided to push the token theme a little further by adding other token makers as well as cards that care about tokens, like Regal Force and Purphoros, God of the Forge.
  • Mosswort Bridge and Gaea's Cradle can go nuts with Mina and Denn, enabling explosive turns.
  • Scapeshift, Splendid Reclamation or Genesis Wave can completely turn the tide or even win you the game with the proper supporting cards. Scapeshift is especially interesting, as you can search for Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle and a lot of mountains. Then each mountain ETB'ing will trigger Valakut's ability, even if your mountain count before Scapeshift wasn't 5 or more. Even better, if you already had Valakut in play, you can get Vesuva instead and get double the damage (Valakut is not legendary). You can also throw Field of the Dead into the mix for more shennenigans. I usually cast Scapeshift at 9 or more lands so I can get Valakut, 6+ mountains, glacial chasm and gaea’s cradle. A one-sided board wipe, strong defense and massive ramp? Not bad for 4 mana.
  • Hate spells on a land like Strip Mine and Blast Zone with land recursion, as well as M&D + one or more Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle provide the deck with reusable board control options.
  • That board control can be enhanced with the deck’s defenses. With cards like Retreat to Kazandu, Primeval Bounty and Radiant Fountain, the deck can generate loads of life quickly when in a bind. Combined with protective lands like Glacial Chasm, the deck can suddenly turn very defensive as well.
  • Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger comes in to wreak havoc from time to time. A nice target for Mina and Denn to give trample to.
  • Talking about nice trample targets, Marit Lage will get spawned if you use Thespian's Stage on Dark Depths (you will lose both lands though).

The amount of different possible ways to become threatening make the deck a lot of fun to pilot. It's great to discover the potential of the more unlikely combinations (Amulet of Vigor + Scapeshift shenanigans into Splendid Reclamation into Genesis Wave all in one turn O_o'). I just love being surprised by what your deck can do.

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The tutor suite helps with getting that additional "volatile element" in play right away and making these plays a little more consistently. To be given certain pieces and figuring out what additional card will make the situation escalate most is exciting and different each game. I also think that the absence of infinite combo's helps in this, so that there isn't a clear the-one-play-that-beats-all-others option to choose from.

Cycling Through

This deck is very hungry for cards as we try to put a lot of lands into play fast in order to play increasingly more spells as the game goes on. So like in loam-based decks, I wanted to have a solid suite of cards that would enable me to cycle through the deck at a rapid and consistent pace and just draw a bunch of cards (also, I just hate it to have a ramped out deck with nothing left in hand to use all that mana for).

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Big part of finding the right cards was balancing the ratio between draw spells and land fetch spells to sort of mimic the the loam draw engine (LFTM + 3 cycling lands) and get the right consistency. To this end I also included some of the land-related cantrips (like Krosan Tusker). Together, these are great for mimicking the loam engine and for making this deck run smoothly.

Remaining Primer Topics

These are the remaining primer topics for whoever wants some more information on reading the deck list, my meta and card selection.

With the wealth of possible lands matter commanders, including The Gitrog Monster, Omnath, Locus of Rage, Azusa, Lost but Seeking, Borborygmos Enraged, Tatyova, Benthic Druid and Titania, Protector of Argoth, why choose Mina and Denn?

What I like most about Mina and Denn is that they emphasize the lands themselves. If you look at Omnath, Locus of Rage or Tatyova, Benthic Druid for example, your lands make them do something cool, while both the abilities of Mina and Denn, Wildborn make your lands do something cool instead. Mina and Denn allow you to build a deck that is all about the lands themselves, showcasing all the amazing non-basics of your choosing.

Other advantages of M&D include:

  • Their abilities are great with landfall.
  • They are ramp in the command zone, which is great for any lands matter deck.
  • They are often underestimated and are not likely to draw out removal.
  • They come out early.
  • Because of their cost and stats they have good lines of play with land matter staples such as Sakura-Tribe Elder and Traverse the Outlands.
  • They lend themselves well to run Valakut Combo, because they can add 2 triggers per turn on their own.
  • Having easy access to trample is a nice perk to have.

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With this deck I hope I have taken Mina and Denn, a commander that is usually reserved for fun casual builds, and explored the ways how to push this duo to a higher power. I had no constraints for myself in this process except that I did not want to include any infinite combo's with this build. It has turned out to be a very synergistic, consistent and unpredictable deck.

Category (Jank - Casual - Focused - Optimized - Competitive)

Optimized

Power Level:

8

These considerations have been guiding in my card selection. They help determine priority when deciding between different cards:

Immediate Effect & Unpredictability

I wanted this deck to be unpredictable. This translated to selecting cards that have immediate effect over cards that telegraph your intentions to the table.

An example of a much played card that telegraphs in this way is Beastmaster Ascension. It's a strong card, but unless you are attacking with 7 the same turn you cast it, it also makes very clear what's coming. This can be an incentive for the table to view you as a threat, giving them more chances to mitigate your attack. I'd rather pay one more mana and run Triumph of the Hordes - or in this list Natural Order into Craterhoof Behemoth - for my overrun cards as those come out of nowhere all of the time. Your attack is not telegraphed in the way that ascension often does.

Another example would be Nissa, Vital Force. It does not do much right away (her +1 is not relevant in edh imo unless you have Cradle out), and the strength of her ultimate could be an incentive for the table to pick you as the prime target. I dislike these type of cards in edh multiplayer, as they often make you threatening to others before you receive any value from it.

Other examples in this category include Scute Mob, Dragonmaster Outcast and Elvish Reclaimer.

By refraining from running these type of cards, we retain control over when we become threatening; when we're ready to make our move.

Balancing Aggression and Resilience

I wanted this deck not just to be aggressive only. I wanted it to have considerable defensive capabilities as well. With life landfall, and the defensive utility lands, the land dance of the deck can also lead to an explosive defense.

Landfall VS Land Recursion

When starting out with this deck, I wanted lands to flow from all zones and providing value with each transition. However, Mina and Denn, Wildborn work best with lands entering and leaving the battlefield. They want us to have a lot of lands in hand, and do not synergize with lands the graveyard. This made me increase the landfall and reduce the emphasis on the graveyard over time.

Ramp & Consistency

The land genre of decks provide a lot of big and expensive ramp spells like Boundless Realms, Traverse the Outlands, Animist's Awakening and Genesis Wave. However, these cards do not ramp into your commander, and do not increase the consistency of the deck. For this reason I have stopped counting "ramp" cards that are more expensive than the commander as actual ramp. We will always need a certain number ramp cards that help us get into the game and make the deck run smoothly. Cards like Cultivate and Krosan Tusker might be a bit boring in comparison to Boundless Realms, but are vital components for this deck to work consistently.

Basic Lands & Basic Land Ramp

Another consideration for big ramp spells is the balance between the amount of basic lands you run, and the amount of cards that ramp for basics. There are so many amazing non-basic lands that shine in a deck like this that I want to run, that I had little room for basics. If that is the path you choose as well, you can't run too many ramp cards that fetch basics as you are going to run out of them rather fast. This is another reason for me to be modest with the big basic land ramp spells (which is why Boundless Realms is not in the list).

Valakut & Mountain Count

Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle is a great asset to this deck, and a big reason to keep this deck 2-colored. Although not eliminating opponents as often as in Modern, it weaponizes our lands to control the board, especially with our commander, and turns Scapeshift into a one-sided board wipe. This ability is enhanced when you can pair it with Vesuva or Thespian's Stage. To make Valakut work though, we need a certain number of Mountains. I settled on 9 as a minimum. This constraint, as well as the one from the last chapter, make this mana base very tight. Non-basic lands have to be well worth their spot to run as much as any non-land would.

Green Meanies Matter

In this deck I wanted to run some powerful green creatures matter cards: Natural Order, Green Sun's Zenith and Regal Force. For these cards to be worthwhile, I tried not to run many red creatures and also to run green token makers primarily.

  • Lands: The stars of the deck.
  • Draw: Cards that draw us more cards.
  • More Lands & More Land Landing: Cards that fetch us lands from the library or up the amount of lands we can play each turn.
  • When Landing Lands: Cards that care about lands entering our board.
  • Recycling Compost: Cards that recur lands from our graveyard.
  • Tutors: Cards that fetch any creature or land from the library.
  • Hate: Cards that interact with our opponent's plan.
  • Tokens & Death By Tokens: Cards that generate tokens or weaponize tokens.
  • Protection: Cards that protect our board.
These are the stars of the deck. This must be the mana base that costed the most time, effort and headaches, as there are just so many lands I would want to run in a deck like this. I settled on the following:

Lands with a basic land type

Lands That Ramp

  • Gaea's Cradle: This is one of the go-to lands when you have a tutor. Insane on it's own and better with Mina and Denn.
  • Blighted Woodland: This land is great because it generates additional landfall triggers in the same way as regular fetch lands do. Except this land finds us 2 lands and it makes mana, so we can decide what is the most opportune moment to activate it.

Fetch Lands

Cycling Lands

Lands that have cycling are great value in this list if you can cycle them and recur them later, but they also increase flexibility and improve consistency of the deck (land-flooded opening hands are keepable more often). Like fetch lands, you could always use more of them, but I settled on the 3 which I thought were the best.

  • Forgotten Cave and Tranquil Thicket: These are the best of the cycling lands because of their cost.
  • Sheltered Thicket: Is the only cycling land of cycling 2 that has relevant additional benefit (in this case, of mana fixing and being a mountain). I removed the other 2-costing cycling lands as they had stiff competition of other utility lands.

Lands to return to your hand

Mina and Denn, Wildborn's second ability may not appear as great as the first, but certain lands may change that appearance:

  • Gaea's Cradle: Tap for X, add a red, bounce, play, tap for X, add a red, bounce, play, add X a third time. Yes, the cradle is pretty good with Mina and Denn.
  • Glacial Chasm: An old favorite of mine and a big reason for me to run Mina and Denn over other land-matter commanders. Glacial Chasm has many downsides, but Mina and Denn can negate them almost completely: during your turn, you can return the chasm to your hand, allowing you to swing. In your second main, you can play it again and reset the cumulative upkeep counter. Combine that with land recursion and/or a lifegain landfall card and you have a great turtle shell that is hard to interact with. In that situation there are many decks that just cannot win anymore. Bring chasm out after you have made an explosive play that made you the archenemy of the game, and it will help you to secure the victory. One of the all star lands in this deck and second of the go-to lands if you have a tutor. Baffling to me that only 10% of EDHrec M&D decks run this.
  • Khalni Garden: Innocent in comparison to the last 2 cards, but having a land that creates (green) tokens without losing a card is a great way to make use of any excess mana and/or land drops you might have. That might turn into additional cards (via Regal Force) or mana (via Gaea's Cradle) later, or can be the sac fodder Natural Order needs.
  • Mosswort Bridge: The potential value of this card in this deck is insane: a land that lets you look at the top 4 and draw the best one would already be an auto-include, but playing the card for free? Amazing (the "play" wording allows us to dig for lands as well which is relevant). This card shines in combination with Amulet of Vigor and Mina and Denn, allowing you to dig deep and cheat out card after card, getting us the explosiveness we want with this deck. The third all star land to get with your tutor and another card that should be in way more M&D lists.
  • Radiant Fountain: Not the most impressive include, but it fits well with my lifegain subtheme and is another land with an ETB trigger. It helps this deck staying alive after you have become the main threat of the game. This card combined with some of the life landfall can mitigate a lot of attacks, providing the deck with some more resilience.
  • Gruul Turf: This card can be the best thing to find with your land tutor if you need landfall triggers but you have no way to get more lands in your hand. This guarantees you the triggers per turn, while also returning another of the lands from this section to your hand for value.

Copy Lands

  • Vesuva: On its own this is a nice versatile card. With Mina and Denn at the helm of our deck though, we can be less picky with our copy targets and just play it early game to return it later. Vesuva also can be a vital piece when using Scapeshift: in the scenario where Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle is already in play when casting Scapeshift, fetching Vesuva to copy Valakut will actually double the damage output from your mountains that ETB with Scapeshift. Similar shenanigans are possible with Field of the Dead.
  • Thespian's Stage: This card can also serve the role of a second (or third) Valakut or Field of the Dead, but it also plays a lead role in the legacy combo with Dark Depths.

Land Weapons

  • Dark Depths: The land that is killing in Legacy. Activate Thespian's Stage on it, and you will have a copy of Dark Depths without any counters on it. A shortcut to a 20/20 Flying, indestructible. Mina and Denn can make this beater even deadlier with their trample-granting ability.
  • Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle: The land that is killing in Modern. However, instead of killing players like in Modern, I usually use Valakut for board control in EDH. One way to abuse it in this deck is to try and make more copies of it with the copy lands, and then bouncing mountains to deal 6-9 damage per land drop. The other way is via Scapeshift.
  • Field of the Dead: This has quickly become the 4th all star land for the deck. In a deck like this, where you are pushing the maximum amount of non-basics that you can, Field of the Dead is basically a free Zendikar's Roil at 7 lands. Except this Zendikar's Roil can be copied with our copy lands, leading to another set of explosive plays. Having such easy access to tokens on a land makes the deck more resilient to board wipes. It also makes Cradle so much more potent as well as our "death by tokens" cards.
  • Scavenger Grounds: Every EDH deck should have graveyard hate, and scavenger grounds was the non-black Bojuka Bog this deck was waiting for. Its downside of exiling our own graveyard is one we can afford because the deck is not relying on it to win.
  • Strip Mine and Wasteland: Strip mine is an auto-include in any EDH deck imo, but it's more powerful here with our land recursion.
  • Blast Zone: Interesting new card that I want to test. Can deal with our opponents' plan without being countered so that is valuable. Will have to see how feasible it is though. Parked Kessig Wolf Run to test it.

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Other Utility Lands

  • Dryad Arbor: Makes Green Sun's Zenith a ramp card for one green mana and turns Finale of Devastation into a Rampant Growth in the early game. It also synergizes with Regal Force and Gaea's Cradle.
  • Homeward Path: protects our deck against steal strategies, which is an effective counter against our big creatures. However, this land hasn't been as valuable as most others. Depending on meta I sometimes switch it out for Boseju. But it could be cut entirely in the future if a new must-run land hits the scene.
  • Cryptic Caves: I'm currently testing this as they will eventually print the gruul variant of Horizon Cannopy. So far, I like the options such a land provides the deck. With M&D and Crucible or Excavator out we can draw 2 cards per turn with a land like that, which has proven very useful. However, chances are this spot will be a flexible one in testing new lands.
The tutors are looking for creatures or lands in this deck. I selected only those tutors that would put the thing I want into play right away.

Land Tutors

  • Crop Rotation: Has so many applications for a deck like this it's an easy include. The sacrifice a land cost is actually benefit in many cases, so we are getting a lot of value for 1 mana. The fact that this is an instant makes it especially valuable, enabling us to pull of combat tricks and life-saving plays (for example, by getting Glacial Chasm).
  • Scapeshift: This is like Crop Rotation's big brother, but at sorcery speed. This card enables some of the most explosive turns for the deck, especially if you can combine it with Amulet of Vigor and/or Splendid Reclamation. Doubles as a hate card with Valakut in the deck.
  • Hour of Promise: The non-basic version of Explosive Vegetation has found its way back in this list. It’s great because it is a tutor, ramp ánd cardadvantage. It also has a good play pattern with M&D. It can get you the Dark Depths + Thespian's Stage combo or can be quite good with Gaea's Cradle + Field of the Dead. Making that play at 5 lands is also getting us the 2 2/2 black zombie tokens without any deserts ;).
  • Ulvenwald Hydra: The hydra also gets us any land we want, but is a creature. Therefore, he turns all our creature tutors into land tutors as well, making those tutors more flexible. He's also a big beater that could really use trample, so a great fit for the deck.
  • Nylea's Intervention: Searching for a large amount of non-basic lands is obviously amazing in this deck. It also doubles as a flying board wipe to boot! Love this card for its versatility.

Creature Tutors

  • Natural Order: This is such a powerful card in this deck. Most of the really good landfall cards are green, so it made sense running tutors like Natural Order over less impressive landfall creatures like Oran-Rief Hydra. And we don't really care about the color restriction in this deck, as we want creatures that are green most of the time. Natural order can be a lot for 4 mana, with Omnath, Locus of Rage, Craterhoof Behemoth or Terastodon being good examples.
  • Green Sun's Zenith: A classic creature tutor in a land deck because of its synergy with Dryad Arbor, but it also fits the bill of putting the thing into play right away.
  • Finale of Devastation: A card similar to the Zenith, except can get a creature of any color (looking at you Purphoros, God of the Forge!). It can also be another buff spell to win with our tokens. Parked Chord of Calling to test it, as chord does not double as well as a ramp spell in the early game.

Mina and Denn want us to have a lot of lands in your hands, because that enables us to benefit from their first ability. One way of getting that is just by drawing cards! Because we can get rid of our lands from our hand twice as fast as a normal deck, we will have a lot of room in our hand quite fast. That's why this deck needs carddraw that is equally explosive as the deck's premise.

Carddraw

Apart from the before mentioned cycling lands and Mosswort Bridge, the deck is running the following cards that draw us cards:

  • Rishkar's Expertise: This is such a favorite explosive card it has found a place in most of my green decks. It provides a Soul's Majesty effect without losing any tempo. It works well with commanders that are cheaper than 6 mana that have decent power. Mina and Denn's power is right at the threshold for the expertise to be worthwhile imo, so we should get 4 cards off of this quite consistently. Later in the game, or the occasional benefit from Retreat to Kazandu, we are likely to have creatures with a power that's higher. A great draw card that does a lot of what we want.
  • Garruk, Primal Hunter: Not as crazy as Rishkar's Expertise but more flexible than Soul's Majesty. And it has a good play pattern with our commander. Garruk also has an ultimate that is relevant in our deck, and his +1 is relevant to our token subtheme. Good fit overall.
  • Tireless Tracker: The market is finally catching up with this card, realizing that you don't need a landfall deck to make it worthwhile. A landfall deck does make it more worthwhile though ^.^. Auto-include.
  • Horn of Greed: Yes, this card also helps our opponents but it gives us such a strong draw engine that (contrary to Nissa, Vital Force) is not likely to draw any hate. It is also unlikely that our opponents will draw more than one card per turn from it, because it triggers only when you play a card (not when fetching or ramping for example). Mina and Denn allow us to get maximum benefit from this card, while opponents tend to leave you alone for a while.
  • Nissa, Vastwood Seer  : This card I really like in the deck, because it is a great creature tutor target in the early game: she gets you a forest in hand, which is not much different from putting it in play directly with M&D, but also transforms into a mini Thrasios, Triton Hero quite reliably and quite fast in this deck. At that point we basically already have a better Krosan Tusker in terms of value. She improves the consistency of the deck quite well.
  • Regal Force: I also wanted massive draw via my creature tutors, and Regal Force fits that job best so far. With the token subtheme, Regal Force can get us a lot of cards.
  • Wheel of Fortune: A late addition to the deck, but you can never go wrong with the wheel. Gives us a full grip after we dumped most of our hand on the board.
  • Shamanic Revelation: I added this card at the same time I added Field of the Dead. With that land in the list, I feel I can take advantage of Shamanic Revelation more reliably than before. This deck is always hungry for cards, so I am glad to now be able to run another explosive draw spell.

Card Selection

More Lands

  • Cultivate and Kodama's Reach: These cards give us exactly what we want: more lands and card-advantage! Green EDH staples and perfect with M&D.
  • Krosan Tusker and Nissa, Vastwood Seer  : These are very similar in effect with M&D as Cultivate or Kodama's Reach: we should get at least 2 new cards for 3 mana, and one of them is a land that we can play right away. These cards are like the grease in the land engine in this deck, as we can cycle through our deck quite well with these cards.
  • Sakura-Tribe Elder, Nature's Lore, Finale of Devastation & Green Sun's Zenith: These spells are nice because they make us skip a turn and play our commander one turn early in most cases while putting more lands into play. Steve is nice in that it is also a creature, deterring aggressive decks in the early game, and incidentally counting towards our green creatures late game.
  • Traverse the Outlands: A Soul's Majesty for lands, for 5 mana, curving out greatly with M&D. This means we are probably getting 4 lands (twice as many lands than Explosive Vegetation, for 1 more mana) at minimum. But it has a lot more potential later in the game. Picking this with Rishkar's Expertise is also amazing fun.
  • Genesis Wave: Genesis Wave is great in this deck, because any lands we hit are going to also trigger any landfall cards that we hit. And with all the ramp we're getting, we can get ridiculous results with this card.

More Land Landing

Mina and Denn make playing lands more powerful. Adding cards that make us play even more lands per turn enhance that effect. I found these to be the most powerful:

  • Azusa, Lost but Seeking: This might be best saved for the late game, when Mina and Denn is in play and we can return a powerful land and replay it over and over again.
  • Dryad of the Ilysian Grove: An exploration on a nice defense body with a Prismatic Omen attached to it. Great with Valakut.
  • Oracle of Mul Daya: The deck's lieutenant and a better 4-drop play than Mina and Denn in the early game. Such a strong stand-alone card, and great if you can combine it with Top or Sylvan Library.
These cards make our lands drop with great impact:

Tokens

Apart from Field of the Dead, I am running the following landfall token makers:

  • Avenger of Zendikar: The Avenger weaponizes the amount of lands we have by generating a plant for each one, and making those plants grow whenever we drop another land. However, just on its own this card usually draws out a board wipe. But together with Purphoros, God of the Forge, the Avenger can end games without any attack phase.
  • Omnath, Locus of Rage: This elemental bad-ass is the more popular alternative for a Gruul land matters deck, but finds a great home here as well. Easily the best landfall token producer around, and a great way to control the board.
  • Rampaging Baloths: 4/4s are bit worse than 5/5s, but the Baloths are still one of the best landfall token producers in our colors.
  • Zendikar's Roil: Not as interesting or as special a 5-drop as Nesting Dragon, but the fact that this is an enchantment makes it resilient as well. Also, we want most of our tokens to be green in order to make Regal Force worthwhile.

Life

  • Courser of Kruphix: Also turning Top and Sylvan Library in cardadvantage. The incremental life gain is a great bonus.
  • Primeval Bounty: I love this card, and synergizes in different ways with our strategy: producing green tokens and gaining life for our land drops. Although it does not say "Landfall", I consider it one of the better green landfall cards.
  • Retreat to Kazandu: 2 life per land is solid at 3 mana, and the +1/+1 counters are relevant sometimes with our power-matters cards.

Utility

  • Amulet of Vigor: This is one of the spicier ingredients in this deck. The Amulet makes the already explosive cards from this deck even more ridiculous: Scapeshift, Splendid Reclamation and Traverse the Outlands all enable the most interesting of plays with the Amulet. It can also generate some big mana in this deck with Gruul Turf, Amulet Bloom style, or cheat out several cards a turn with Mosswort Bridge. Save it for the right moment.
  • Lotus Cobra: This little snake allows for amazing amounts of mana very early in the game. Ramp cards, fetches and more land drops together can sometimes even double your mana and stretch your turns considerably.
After trying out different recursion cards, I have found these 5 to be the best ones:

  • Crucible of Worlds and Ramunap Excavator: Both of these are key in any lands deck imo. With Mina and Denn we can abuse our extra land drops well with saccable lands like fetch lands for cardadvantage, or control our opponents’ ramp with Strip Mine.
  • Life from the Loam: One of the key cards of the extended deck that inspired this list, Life From the Loam provides excellent recurable recursion. Great with the cycling lands and all saccable lands.
  • Splendid Reclamation: Allows for amazing landfall turns. Game-winning after a Scapeshift.
  • Titania, Protector of Argoth: One of the other land-related generals in our colors. Usually ramps us a land at minimum and fits great with our token subtheme to boot. Very strong with Scapeshift or Crucible of Worlds.
In addition to the landfall cards, Gruul has access to some great token cards:

  • Dragonlair Spider: A great and consistent token maker that can put more tokens in play in a turncycle than we can play lands in most situations, while being solid standalone creatures at the same time. I found this card better than the remaining landfall alternatives, like Sporemound.
  • Tendershoot Dryad: A tried for a long time to get this in the list for similar reasons as Dragonlair Spider. I eventually made the hard cut and removed Nesting Dragon, as the dragon tokens aren't green and can't attack right away.
  • Purphoros, God of the Forge: This card provides an alternative win-condition by weaponizing our token generators, for example with one or more Field of the Dead. Sometimes it can be a bridge too far to cast in the early or mid game, but with Avenger of Zendikar or a way to tutor for it, Purphoros really makes our land-count count.
  • Craterhoof Behemoth: This beast needs no explanation. Craterhoof is the best buff creature in the format by far. His green color makes it ideal with our creature tutors.

Board Wipes

Next to Blast Zone and Scapeshift(-> Valakut) I am running these board wipes:

  • Blasphemous Act: This wipe will take out most problematic creatures
  • Vandalblast: This one cripples our opponents' board while not touching our own. There is always stuff to blow up with this card.
  • Perilous Vault: I really like this card in this deck, as we are not running any way to recur non-lands. Any of those that are going to the grave might as well be exiled for us anyway, while exiling our opponents' board can be crippling for them.
  • Nylea's Intervention: Will be used for its other mode most of the time, but can easily deal with opposing flyers as we hardly run any.

Spot Removal

  • Scavenging Ooze: Strong graveyard hate at the 2-drop spot. Being a creature helps with Natural Order, Regal Force and the Cradle.
  • Terastodon: Here to make our green creature tutors become spot removal as well.
  • Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger: Another colorless card that brings exile removal to our colors. At the same time, Ulamog can be a win-condition.
  • Force of Vigor: Two Naturalizes in one card that you can also play for free. Feels right at home here with all the card draw spells that allow us to refill our hand.
  • Beast Within: A versatile card to answer most threats.
  • Heroic Intervention: A cheap card that protects our board from most wipes. Combines well with some of our own board wipes as well.
  • Lightning Greaves: Is here to make our big creatures attack right away, or to protect our biggest threat from spot removal.
  • Deflecting Swat: I used to run Reverberate in this spot as a way to protect against counters. However, this new red variant does the same job, but at a cheaper price and without having to leave mana open as long as M&D are on the board. It can also protect one of our threats from spot removal, or redirect powerful abilities. Looking forward to see this in action.

These are some of the cards that I have tested or that I've been asked about in the past. Here are the reasons why I'm not running them, at least at the moment :). Also check the build considerations if you are interested what has guided my decision making.

Because they are too slow / put a target on your head before you receive value from them:

  • Dragonmaster Outcast & Scute Mob: Just too slow and a bit too greedy. Doesn't give you anything when you play it, except a higher threat level.
  • Elvish Reclaimer: Takes 3 turns before you can use the land you want. That is too slow for what I want with this deck.
  • Nissa, Vital Force: This is a real a gamble of a card. What's certain is that your threat level will increase greatly. What is not sure is if you will draw any cards from it. That gamble doesn't fit my play style for this deck. Also fits in the next category.

Because they are not reliable in what they do:

  • Realms Uncharted: Only gets you the land you want guaranteed with land recursion.
  • Tempt with Discovery: Sometimes you might get lucky and get 4 lands, but most of the time I would get only one, ór my opponents do what they shóuld do and search for a strip mine and destroy the one land I actually wanted to get. The point is that there is no way to tell what you will get and I prefer reliability in my tutors.

Because I value the lands that I am running over these ones, and there is no more room :)

Because it's not as good or synergistic as the cards included that compete for the spot:

Because I decided to tone down the focus on the graveyard for this deck:

  • Centaur Vinecrasher: Got cut quite early in development as I noticed it did not shine in this list.
  • Sylvan Safekeeper: Cool with some cards, but I don't have enough recursion to always be happy to draw this card.

Because it's only really good with another card, but mediocre when you don't have that card:

  • Abundance: Great with Sylvan Library, over-costed without.
  • Prismatic Omen: Amazing with Scapeshift/Valakut, unnecessary without.
  • Wrenn and Six: Only really good with an early fetch in this list, and they don't scale with more land drops as the crucible and the excavator do.

Because I just don't really like the card in my playgroup or in this deck:

  • Eternal Witness: A little overplayed imo. Yes it's always nice to play a card again, but it's not what I wanted to focus on with this list. Instead, all recursion targets lands specifically.
  • Tooth and Nail: I just don't really like what this card represents most of the time.
  • Jokulhaups: Although I love MLD, I love a healthy playgroup better.
  • Sol Ring: In this deck it's synergy over everything. Even Sol ring ;). It's a mana source that is not a land!
  • Storm Cauldron: Fun every once in a while, but too staxy for my playgroup
  • Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger: This is not the way I want to win with this deck ;).

Because my meta doesn't warrant their inclusion:

I play commander with a set playgroup in a kitchentable setting. We have added one house rule: no infinite card combo's of 2 or less cards (like Tooth and Nail based combo's). We also try to keep a check on excessive stax or denial strategies. This usually enables that everyone has a chance to try out their creations and have some fun.

What's interesting about my meta though is that blue is quite underplayed. This is why I still haven't added cards like Boseiju, Who Shelters All to the deck. There are quite some graveyard-based decks and thus quite a lot of graveyard hate. This makes it so I did not want to depend on the graveyard for my strategy.

I use the updates section to share most updates. Please check there for card changes and considerations.

Currently testing:

Cards I’m considering to replace:

This has become my favorite deck to play. Please do not hesitate to leave a comment and letting me know your thoughts. Also, feel free to upvote the deck if you liked it and thanks for checking it out!

And, if you like this list, please consider checking out my other primer:


Karametra's Short-Term Memory | Primer V-ELD

Commander / EDH Beebles

SCORE: 61 | 15 COMMENTS | 6337 VIEWS | IN 19 FOLDERS


GL & HF,

Beebles

Don't let the lands turn you upside down

Suggestions

Updates Add

Theros beyond death looks pretty good for land matter decks! First off Nylea's Intervention. It is an excellent card for in Mina and Denn and is going to replace Yavimaya Elder. Searching for a large amount of non-basic lands is obviously amazing in this deck. While at 3 mana it can still get us 2 landdrops by fetching Gruul Turf, mimicking what the elder did for the deck. It also doubles as a flying board wipe to boot! Such versatility. Love this card.

The new Dryad of Ilysia’s Grove is also super sweet. Great with valakut combo, but also relevant without it due to it’s other ability (and thus, way better than Prismatic Omen in edh). I will test this in place of Burgeoning. I have also taken out Ghost Town for a while as a result to test Cryptic Caves.

Some other tweaks: I have switched out Maze of Ith for Thaumatic Compass  Flip. I can't remember the last time I searched for Maze with a tutor, so thaumatic compass becomes a little bit better card in most situations. Also going to test Tendershoot Dryad instead of Nesting Dragon and switched out Misty Rainforest for Arid Mesa for a more even off-color fetch distribution.

——

From Ikoria and Commander 2020, the only card I’m adding here is Deflecting Swat. It does a better job of why Reverberate was in the list. This card can counter counterspells, redirect spells with multiple targets as well as powerful abilities such as Aetherflux Reservoir. All for free if M&D are out, which is often.

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Casual

91% Competitive

Top Ranked
Date added 3 years
Last updated 3 weeks
Legality

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Rarity (main - side)

19 - 0 Mythic Rares

52 - 0 Rares

11 - 0 Uncommons

7 - 0 Commons

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 3.86
Tokens 0/1 Insect, 1/1 Elemental, 4/4 Elemental, 0/1 Plant, 3/3 Elephant, 2/2 Zombie, 20/20 Avatar, Clue, 1/1 City's Blessing, 1/1 Saproling, 5/5 Wurm, 3/3 Beast
Folders Inspired, sigarda, Cool Deck Ideas - EDH, EDH, OK, Interesting Commander Decks, mina and denn...reeeboooootttt, Cool EDH, EDH Decks - Other People's, Heel erg leuk, See all 39
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1 month ago)

+1 Deflecting Swat main