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The Ultimate Flash Hulk Primer

Commander / EDH Combo Competitive GWUB


Welcome to Flash Hulk

Regarded by many as the best cedh around, Thrasios/Tymna Flash Hulk is a deck which, when played right, is both a notoriously difficult and outrageously resilient combo threat. I’m here to help lessen some of the inherent difficulty presented from a deck as innately complex as this one. To preface this primer, it should be noted that 4-color flash hulk (affectionately named “breakfast hulk”) is NOT a deck for beginners, AND SHOULD NOT be built on a budget.
At its core, this deck is rather simple. In practice, it’s far more difficult to pilot, but all we really want to do is play a mana elf T1, followed up by Tymna T2. From there, we try to start attacking our opponents with all of our creatures, spreading around as much damage as possible - this will help us draw more cards from Tymna’s ability. At some point, we then try to get the combination of bot Flash and Protean Hulk into our hand. From there, we cast Flash and pray. If Flash resolves, we win the game. You heard me right - We. Just. Win. I’ll show you how it works later.
Let me start by saying that all hope is not lost for people looking to play competitive flash hulk on a reasonable budget, but there are several factors which make this deck nearly unplayable on a tight cost basis. Firstly, due to our 4-color manabase and greedy mana requirements, there are almost no real budget land replacements for our current duals. I guess pain lands will do, but it is very possible that we just straight-up die from the manabase, even in its optimized form. Taking 2 or 3 damage each turn only for the purpose of casting our spells will most likely end up being back-breaking: this is the cost we pay in order to not flush most of our paycheck down the toilet on a few pieces of cardboard. In general play, thing most important thing for this deck to do is play a mana elf turn 1, followed by Tymna turn 2. Clearly, have G T1 followed by B/W T2 is not easy, even for an optimal manabase to do, let alone one missing some of its key elements. Secondly, our backup win condition utilizes LED, which, at the time when I’m writing this, is priced at 240$. Now, this isn’t to say playing 4-colors on a budget is impossible: there is actually a pretty good thread on this which can be found somewhere in the deepest, darkest depths of reddit. The author concluded, unsurprisingly, that the further we degraded the quality of our manabase and tutor density, the less competitive our deck became, but that it was possible to build a solidly functional list on as little as 800$.
Not many. I guess the silence effects and Scroll Rack are replaceable. It seems a bit iffy, as Scroll Rack is absolutely insane with all of our fetchlands and tutors. Silence is also pretty crucial in stopping interaction during our combo turns. Some of the interaction like Chain of Vapor, Abrupt Decay, Mental Misstep, etc... might be cuttable, but each and every one of those cards serves their own purpose. Once we are as high up on the tier list as this deck is (tier 1), there isn’t much room for personal preference, as all decks are very streamlined. If you absolutely MUST include you own touch on this deck, I think the best card to take out would be Spellseeker. It feels bad to cut a tutor, but our curve ends at 2. We really shouldn’t need to be casting spells that cost more than 2 mana (look at it this way: for 2 mana we can cast flash and win the game) at all. The only reason why Spellseeker is a solid inclusion is because it tutors for flash and provides a 1/1 body which will help us draw to the Hulk if we don’t already have it. But, it is 3 mana, and we don’t spend 3 mana on anything.
No, just... No. Absolutely not. It’s bad. Very bad. More than very bad; it’s awful. Unfortunately, I did try the Food Chain variant for a short while - all it did was degrade the consistency of our flash lines. Instead of getting to play extra cantrips and interaction, we were stuck running stuff like Enlightened Tutor and Idyllic Tutor. Not to mention the creatures, Eternal Scourge, Misthollow Griffin, and Squee. Food Chain has absolutely NO synergy with our preexisting win conditions; it offered nothing to our list. Almost all cards the Food Chain variant utilized were completely useless every time except for when we popped off using the Chain. It was just plain awful, so do yourself a favor and don’t even be tempted to try it.
Meh. I honestly don’t know what to think here. I also tried this for a while, with mixed results. There were a couple scenarios where it was very good and offered another way to win through targeted hate, but those instances were few and far between. For the most part, Ooze felt like unneeded redundancy. It was redundantly redundant with redundant redundancy. Say that 5 times fast (I’m sorry, I had to. It wouldn’t truly be redundant without it :) ). Unlike Food Chain, it doesn’t fall victim to its own flaws; that is, Ooze is almost never completely useless. It’s only nearly totally useless most of the time. When it comes down to it, competitive EDH is a game of inches - if a card isn’t a combo piece, it becomes a game of which selection of cards offers the widest range of utility for the most scenarios. There is a reason why cards like Assassin’s Trophy are great. Opponent played a Rest In Peace? No problem, I’ll pay 2 mana and blow it up. Someone trying to win with Food Chain? Doesn’t matter, I’ll send it to Narnia (destroy it), never to return. Cantrips fall under a similar reputation. It never feels bad to draw a Ponder. It doesn’t matter if it’s T1 or T10, Ponder will offer the same amount of value at any point during the entire game. Now, understanding this, I can say it really feels like Lab Man is the way to go, as flash hulk most readily lends itself to a Dread Return based combo, but I could still see an argument for keeping Ooze since it does a good job of making our deck slightly more resilient against targeted hate. At the end of the day, the choice is yours; whether you keep it in or not is completely up to you. I chose to cut Ooze for another silence effect because it simply didn’t offer enough value to be worth a full card slot.
Uhhhhh... it wasn’t great, but it didn’t feel too sub-optimal either. Out of the three questionable options, Bomberman was by far the most appealing choice since it most easily slots into a classic Flash Hulk shell. However, Bomberman has an issue similar to Necrotic Ooze; that is, it felt overly-repetitive. Therein, you almost never really need the Auriok Salvagers loop, since it is effectively identical to a Muldrotha line. That being said, Salvagers didn’t feel as bad to play or draw as Ooze or..., ugh..., that disgusting Food Chain garbage. Additionally, Salvagers offered a loop outside of a Flash Hulk ending: Just Salavgers and LED alone is infinite mana - we can play Thrasios and win the game off of only those two cards, but it is quite rare that we will see both LED and Salvagers before we assemble Flash Hulk. In conclusion, Bomberman has its merits, and I am not against including it in my list. However, I personally feel that Salvagers doesn’t offer enough flexibility to be worth cutting interaction for the sole purpose of creating a tertiary and niche win condition.

There is another fundamental decision here, where we can opt to play Salvagers instead of Muldrotha. This is a rather common choice, but when I played Flash Hulk without Muldrotha, the whole combo felt far more glass-cannon; It became a lot harder for us to find a way to win the game if we don’t have access to Thrasios. To restate, I think that Muldrotha is slightly stronger than Salvagers since it offers a bit more resiliency to our opponents’ hate; Muldrotha lets us play pretty much any card (permanent) from our yard, while Salvagers only grants us access to LED.

Unfortunately, Twister plays a pretty crucial role this deck. It’s a major component in our Hermit Druid lines, as it allows us to shuffle our yard back into our library after an infinite mana LED sequence. Timetwister is extremely important, as we need an effect like it to be able to have a library to draw from when using Thrasios’s ability. Fortunately, Time Spiral does the same job that Twister does for a fraction of the price (it can be bought for only 50$), but Twister offers us a line to win when we don’t have access to Lab Man and Noxious Revival. Since Time Spiral exiles itself, we only get to shuffle our graveyard into our library once, and are therefore unable to loop our Assassin’s Trophy. I’ll briefly elaborate on why we need Twister.
  1. Draw your deck with Thrasios
  2. Cast Assassin’s Trophy on anything you want
  3. Cast Memory’s Journey targeting Timetwister and Assassin’s Trophy
  4. Use Thrasios to draw Timetwister
  5. Cast Timetwister and shuffle everything back in
We are now right back where we started. From here, you can machine-gun down all of your opponents permanents. Once that’s finished, you can start Swan Songing your Assassin’s Trophy, creating infinite 2/2 birds. Pass the test turn with a full library, each opponent with 7 cards in hand and no permanents; all while having to deal with infinite 2/2 birds which you can create again next turn if they magically have a 1 mana boardwipe. Alternatively, it is totally possible to loop Memory’s Journey and Noxious Revival’s to keep stringing together Assassin’s Trophy and Swan Song, thus removing the need for Timetwister completely (but this is still nowhere near as efficient as Lab Man). What it comes down to is this - if we are missing both Lab Man and Noxious Revival, we need Timetwister. If we have access to either Lab Man or Noxious Revival, Time Spiral will do the trick. I’m sorry about this, but look on the bright side; you get to “invest” in the worst piece of the power 9. That’ll be 2,500$... enjoy!
To be fair, every game of Magic is different, with each new scenario presenting its own unique decisions which must be made. I cannot explicate how to pilot in every single situation, but what follows is a GENERAL GUIDE on what to do.
  1. OPENING HAND: This is the only part where I REALLY can’t help you in the slightest as hands are heavily dependent upon the decks you are facing. However, hands with either an unwanted combo piece (i.e Lab Man, Dread Return, etc...), 4 or more lands, or unable to cast Tymna are auto mulligans
  2. First Decision : Turn One - there is really only one thing here. Do we have a mana elf? If the answer is yes, slam it. A mana elf on turn one is just about the strongest thing our deck can do. If we don’t have an elf, our hand better be pretty damn good (or, alternatively, we mulled into oblivion and our hand is garbage. In this rare case, we probably just lose).
  3. Second Decision: Turn Two - Only one thing to consider here. Can we cast Tymna? If the answer is yes, we cast her. Do this every single time, no exceptions. Tymna is our primary source of card advantage, we need her and our little elf to start slapping our opponents if we want to have any chance of going off. If we couldn’t cast Tymna because there was no mana elf T1, I’d look to Tutor EOT (end of turn) to set up a flash play on T3.
  4. Third Decision
  5. This could come at any point past turn 2 - this is where Magic becomes really hard. This is the part of the game where we are looking to combo out with a well-timed Flash. For the most part, just try to set up reads on your opponents. This can be done by observing the physical hand actions of the blue players at the table (It’s pretty common for someone to flinch a bit whenever anyone else casts a spell and they have a counterspell up). Watch for Force of Will (and other “free” counterspells), keep track of who has “used” their answers. Many times, a win will be gifted to you on a sliver platter because the control player made a mistake by tapping out during their turn after you saw them burn Force of Will a few turns ago. Most importantly, keep your reads private. Never ask to see someone’s graveyard. The worst thing you can possibly do is draw attention to yourself - our deck needs to stay as silent as possible to remain effective. Outside of that, just try to smack as many opponents as you can with Tymna and your elves to draw cards, but do not forget about your lifetotal. 40 is a higher starting point than usual, but it will drop to 0 very quickly if you aren’t careful.
Just as an important reminder, it is crucial to not waste our removal on anything except for targeted hate. That Abrupt Decay night look like a solid answer for an Exploration, but, consider this - If we do blow up that Exploration, and one of our opponents slams Rest In Peace T2, we just wasted our Abrupt Decay and now must play around/through a Rest In Peace (which, may I say, is absolutely miserable) for the foreseeable future. Simply put, don’t get greedy. Don’t get me wrong, being greedy in Magic is often beneficial (being greedy and drawing extra cards is a major reason why this deck is as good as it is), but we don’t have a ton of ways to interact with hate; don’t waste the few silver bullets we do have on general threats. Our goal is not to be the table policeman - our deck isn’t very good at that. We are trying to maintain a gamestate with as little interaction as possible. In the same vein of thinking, our counterspells fall under a similar category as our other interaction. The same principle of conservation applies here as well, since our Force of Will is meant to stop an opponent Mana Draining our Flash or to stop them from sticking a Grafdiggers Cage; it is not meant to prohibit their Mana Crypt. The only exceptions to this logic are when death is imminent. Obviously, Food Chain or Doomsday absolutely cannot resolve and it is at those times where we are forced to use our answers. To restate, other than in a few select scenarios, don’t waste our interaction.
Finally! The easy part. Just follow the following steps.
  1. Cast Flash
  2. Put Protean Hulk into play using Flash’s ability
  3. When Protean Hulk enters the battlefield, Flash will check to see if you pay the extra 5 mana. You will decline and sacrifice the Hulk
  4. The Protean Hulk dies, putting its death trigger on the stack. Resolve the trigger and put Grand Abolisher, Nomads en-Kor, Cephalid Illusionist, and Hapless Researcher into play
  5. Use Nomad en-Kor’s ability to pay 0 mana and redirect one damage to Cephalid Illusionist. In turn, Cephalid Illusionist became the target of an ability, putting its trigger of “mill 3” on the stack. Resolve this trigger, and repeat this process until all cards from you library are in your graveyard. Remember to put Narcomoeba into play when you mill it
  6. Dig through your graveyard and find Dread Return. Cast Dread Return for its flashback cost by sacrificing Narcomoeba, Nomads en-Kor, and Cephalid Illusionist.
  7. Allow Dread Return to resolve, returning Laboratory Maniac from your graveyard to play
  8. Once Lab Man is in play, use Hapless Researcher’s ability to sacrifice itself and draw a card. Since you have no cards left in your library, Laboratory Maniac checks and you win the game
It is important to remember that your opponents can do literally nothing once you resolve the Protean Hulk death trigger, since you put Grand Abolisher into play upon its resolution.
Again, another easy win awaits. Similar to before, just follow these steps. You must have access to at least one green and one blue mana (a total of 2 mana) to execute this combo.
  1. Pay green to activate Hermit Druid. Since we play no basic lands, put your entire library into your graveyard. Remember to put Narcomoeba into play from it’s trigger during the mill
  2. Use one blue mana to cast Fatestitcher for its Unearth cost. Use Fatesticher’s ability to untap the blue mana which you used to Unearth it
  3. Flashback Dread Return from you graveyard by sacrificing Hermit Druid, Fatestitcher, and Narcomoeba. Return Muldrotha, the Gravetide to play
  4. Use Muldrotha’s ability to cast Lion’s Eye Diamond (LED) from you graveyard.
  5. Sacrifice LED for blue mana to cast Phantasmal Image. You have 1 blue mana floating.
  6. Have Phantasmal Image enter the battlefield as a copy of Muldrotha. The Legend rule will check, and Sacrifice the original Muldrotha
  7. With the new Phantasmal Image as a new Muldrotha, cast LED from your graveyard
  8. This time, crack LED for black to cast Necromancy, targeting Muldrotha.
  9. This Muldrotha enters, sacrifice the Phantasmal Image to the legend rule
  10. We are now back in the starting position of our loop, except with one blue mana in our mana pool. Execute this loop as much as you like, then begin cracking LED for different colors to make infinite mana of different colors. Muldrotha allows us to cast our old friends Laboratory Manic and Hapless Researcher from our graveyard. You know what happens next.
If for some reason Lab Man isn’t available, don’t panic. Simply execute the Muldrotha loop and cast Grand Abolisher. After Abolisher, flashback Memory’s Journey, Shuffling Timetwister and two other cards into our deck. Cast Thrasios, Triton Hero, and draw timetwister. Cast Timetwister and shuffle our graveyard back into our deck. Active Thrasios, Triton Hero with all of our infinite floating mana and draw our deck. I’ll let you figure out how to win from here :)
This just about wraps up my primer, thank you all so much for reading. I hope you go on to enjoy this deck as much as I do

Yours Truly,



Updates Add


33% Casual

67% Competitive

Date added 4 years
Last updated 4 years

This deck is not Commander / EDH legal.

Rarity (main - side)

4 - 0 Mythic Rares

59 - 0 Rares

22 - 0 Uncommons

15 - 0 Commons

Cards 100
Avg. CMC 1.74
I Token Bird 2/2 U, Spirit 1/1 C
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