Mono Red infinite combos???

Commander (EDH) forum

Posted on April 2, 2022, 6:43 p.m. by DJ-Ango

I’m building a Zada, Hedron Grinderdeck, because I love aggro with all my heart, but the truth of the matter is, it won’t compete with the Narset, Enlightened Master and Rashmi, Eternities Crafter decks at my table. So, I need a few quick wins such as Heat Shimmer and Dualcaster Mage. So, what’re some good ideas for infinite combos in red? Preferably try to keep things pretty budget, but I’m open to ideas.

jaymc1130 says... #2

For competitive purposes the first couple of concepts that should come to mind are pretty obvious.

You’ve got access Godo in red.

You’ve got access to Birgi in red.

Dualcaster Mage, as noted, can produce a number of game winning combo lines.

You’ve got access to Kiki in red.

And every deck at least has access to artifacts and Sensei’s Top.

All good starting points, and if you know the decks you expect the table to bring you can meta game a bit and choose some of these options or others that work well into their strategies.

Personally, I fell in love with Birgi and, by extension, Cloudstone Curio the second I played with her and her combos and play patterns are powerfully potent.

April 2, 2022 7:16 p.m.

jaymc1130 says... #3

Oh yeah, and Magda.

April 2, 2022 7:21 p.m.

AstroAA says... #4

I'm partial to the opinion of if you cannot keep up with the game, bring the game to a screeching halt. I'd go the opposite direction if speed is your problem - Winter Orb, Blood Moon, Tectonic Instability, etc. Now, the main problem with going this way is Zada, Hedron Grinder does not really give you anything to benefit with this line of play; you'd need to swap your commander entirely.

If you did want to keep on the combo route, as jaymc1130 said, Cloudstone Curio is one of the best enablers in the entirety of Magic, and Birgi, God of Storytelling  Flip is just a super strong card; both her front side and her backside. From here, it all depends on what you want to do.

By far probably the easiest creature to abuse in mono-red is Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker. Splinter Twin, Zealous Conscripts, Lightning Crafter, and Worldgorger Dragon are all good methods of abusing him. However, you'd need sac outlets, such as Goblin Bombardment, Goblin Sharpshooter, Blasting Station, Ashnod's Altar, or Phyrexian Altar for a max payout - albeit in a combo deck you'd ideally already be running most of if not all of them.

If you wanted to focus more on instants and sorceries, cards like Runaway Steam-Kin and Grinning Ignus with the aforementioned Birgi, God of Storytelling  Flip. From here though, your line of play is going to be more storm-esque - not really infinite and there is a decent chance of fizzling out. Aetherflux Reservoir is really good though for a more storm-based approach win-con though and can make the playstyle win rather easily.

Personally, if you wanted to play combo, I'd swap the commander. In mono-red, I think the best combo commander is either Birgi, God of Storytelling  Flip (albeit with a more storm-esque approach as previously mentioned) simply due to having easy access to her, or Bosh, Iron Golem because he can easily win at instant speed, although he requires a fair amount of setup time in order to do so, and if speed is what you desire then he probably won't be of much use.

EDIT: I forgot to mention Godo, Bandit Warlord. He is without a doubt the strongest mono-red commander because he just wins on the spot with Helm of the Host. He's a cEDH general for a reason, but having only one win-con is kinda boring in my opinion.

April 2, 2022 8:40 p.m. Edited.

Grubbernaut says... #5

Underworld Breach + Wheel of Fortune + Lion's Eye Diamond, though it'll be hard to assemble in mono-red.

April 2, 2022 10:55 p.m.

DJ-Ango says... #6

First of all, thanks for all of the suggestions so far. As far as alternate commanders go, Godo is a no no. He’s really boring in my opinion, but definitely a more competitive option. I already have a decent Yuriko list for my meta, so I’m looking to build something more unique. Birgi will definitely be in the 99, as it’s just a good red card and Kiki-Jiki as well. Cloudstone Curio is definitely a great combo piece, so I’ll try to find a cheap copy or trade for it. I may run some of the control pieces you mentioned, because those are a great way to shut down especially the Narset, Enlightened Master deck that always gives me trouble. Birgi could be cool as the commander, so I’ll brew both lists and see what I prefer. Also I definitely can’t afford the Wheel of Fortune and Lion's Eye Diamond needed for the combo from Grubbernaut, but thanks for the help.

April 2, 2022 11:34 p.m.

AstroAA says... #7

It seems that all the decks that your mates are running are based on cheating things into play or casting things for free. Grafdigger's Cage is an absolute must. One mana to fuck over both Rashmi, Eternities Crafter and Narset, Enlightened Master. Weathered Runestone is also good for this.

Narset, Enlightened Master's cheat is based on her attacking, so prevent her from attacking. Ensnaring Bridge and Meekstone are good for this.

Meanwhile, for Rashmi, Eternities Crafter, the method to tackling her is to tax the ever-loving shit out of her. Thorn of Amethyst, Trinisphere, Sphere of Resistance, etc. Even if they are able to cast spells for free, they still have to pay the tax. Void Mirror is also an excellent option. Note, all of these methods can also stop the Narset deck.

Meanwhile, Yuriko, the Tiger's Shadow is harder to deal with in my opinion since she's putting cards directly into their hand as opposed to having them draw cards. I think the main method of going about stopping them is boardwipes such as Anger of the Gods and Sweltering Suns, as these can help kill the creatures that she hopes to attack with to cheat herself into play for the card advantage. Spot removal such as Lightning Bolt works too.

April 3, 2022 12:23 a.m.

AstroAA says... #8

I wanted to add, but I wasn't allowed to edit my previous comment;

It should be obvious based on my two posts, but I like taking preventative approaches to dealing with things as opposed to trying to out-speed someone. Most of everything I just said here is for taking such a preventative approach, but it turns you off of what you initially wanted - infinite combos and trying to out-speed opponents. If you take anything away from what I said, run a Grafdigger's Cage. Everything else requires a shift in direction for your deck, and I don't think you want to do that judging on your initial post. If you do want to or end up swapping to a more control style of play, my personal favorite mono red general for the style is Zo-Zu the Punisher as it punishes players for playing lands.

April 3, 2022 12:31 a.m.

plakjekaas says... #9

I like Final Fortune + Isochron Scepter + Sundial of the Infinite, but I'm weird like that '^^

April 3, 2022 3:53 a.m.

Brash Taunter + Blazing Sunsteel

Combat Celebrant + Helm of the Host

Heartless Hidetsugu + Angrath's Marauders + you at an odd life total and everybody else at evens.

April 3, 2022 5:18 a.m.

DJ-Ango says... #11

AstroAA, I love the ideas, but I don’t believe Grafdigger's Cage does anything to Narset since her ability exiles the cards before casting them. However, it’s still definitely worth running to shut down any graveyard shenanigans and Rashmi, Eternities Crafter triggers. I don’t know how I missed Meekstone. That is for sure going in. I do like the idea of a preventative approach to winning, and if the games continue too long, the Narset and Rashmi players can Counterspell and Cyclonic Rift their ways to victory, so some stax pieces would help prevent that. I’m kinda leaning towards Zo-Zu the Punisher control/stax or Heartless Hidetsugu group slug. But we’ll see what I end up landing on.

April 3, 2022 9:23 a.m.

AstroAA says... #12

DJ-Ango Ooh, thanks for catching that for me. It was like 12am when I wrote that, and might not of all been there, haha. Oh well.

April 3, 2022 9:48 a.m.

DJ-Ango says... #13

AstroAA, no problem. After some contemplation, I’ve decided Zada is probably the best general for what I want. I need something chill, because I’ve been going to my LGS more recently, and many people are playing precons. I probably will meta game a bit for my usual playgroup by running Void Mirror and the likes rather than out-speeding my opponents, but the Johnny in me still wants to run a couple infinite combos, so we’ll see how the list turns out.

April 3, 2022 1:30 p.m.

StopShot says... #14

Lightning Crafter + Molten Echoes naming either Goblin or Shaman. (Whichever is a more convenient creature type for your deck.)

Key thing you should remember, the champion keyword's exile ability does not target, which means the creature you exile doesn't need to be on the table when the ability triggers, it just needs to be on the battlefield when it resolves. You can also resolve a champion trigger even if the card with champion is no longer on the battlefield. These two things you'll need to remember when explaining the combo to the group. (Best have a written explanation in case you forget.)

Molten Echoes is on the battlefield and you named either Goblin or Shaman for it. You cast Lightning Crafter. Both Champion and Molten Echoes trigger and since you control both sources you can choose the order the effects resolve in. Put Lightning Crafter's champion ability on the stack first and then Molten Echoes'. This means Molten Echoes' ability resolves first which creates a token of Lightning Crafter with haste. The token of Lightning Crafter will then have its own champion ability trigger which will resolve before the original Lightning Crafter's champion ability resolves. With the token's champion ability, you're going use it to exile the original Lightning Crafter. Keep in mind, the original Lightning Crafter's champion ability is still on the stack, and before original champion ability can resolve you're going to tap the token with haste to deal 3 damage to an enemy. Then you allow the original Lightning Crafter's champion ability to resolve in which you'll exile the tapped Lightning Crafter token. This causes the token to leave the battlefield and because the token exiled the original Lightning Crafter the original Lightning Crafter re-enters the battlefield, which causes both its champion ability and the Molten Echoes to trigger again. Repeat this process until everyone at the table is thoroughly dead.

April 3, 2022 1:39 p.m.

StopShot says... #15

Birgi, God of Storytelling  Flip + Hazoret's Monument + Grinning Ignus

Someone already mentioned a variation of this, but with these three cards you can generate infinite colorless mana and draw as many cards as you need. (You'll also have a free red mana floating at any given point in time.) You then draw into your wincon which will be either Cogwork Assembler, Comet Storm, Conflagrate, Fireball, Meteor Shower or Walking Ballista.

You could also make Blasting Station, Fiery Bombardment, Goblin Bombardment, Makeshift Munitions, Mask of Immolation, Mortarpod or Weaponize the Monsters a wincon here. With your infinite colorless mana you could just cast your commander, sacrifice her to deal a damage and then recast and repeat. Birgi, God of Storytelling  Flip will refund whatever red mana you spend throughout any of these processes.

April 3, 2022 2:08 p.m.

StopShot says... #16

April 3, 2022 2:21 p.m.

StopShot says... #17

Last combo: Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker + Thornbite Staff + Any creature that can sacrifice itself for free damage such as Fanatical Firebrand, Goblin Firestarter, or Mogg Fanatic.

Only sacrifice the tokens so you will always have the original to make copies of.

April 3, 2022 2:32 p.m.

Can spells that target “up to x” that get copied re-target creatures that have already been targeted? Will Blades of Velis Vel loop around a bunch of times if the grinder gets targeted by each of the copies?

April 3, 2022 3:35 p.m.

jaymc1130 says... #19

AFAIK, yes, the Blade copies should allow you to retarget Zada as the second creature. No, this will not loop. Zada specifies cast, copied spells are not cast and will not trigger Zada. IF Zada did copy when targeted by a copy then the loop would become infinite, Zada is not a "may" effect, and the game would end in a draw unless some one could kill the Zada because the loop would never be allowed to stop. Which would be bad.

April 3, 2022 5:02 p.m.

McToters says... #20

Something simple would be Mana Geyser + Reiterate, as long as enough lands are tapped this could net infinite mana. Then all you need is something like Kaervek's Torch as a juicy mana sink to blow someone's face off.

April 3, 2022 9:51 p.m.

Porphyriac says... #21

One of my favorite interactions in my krenko deck is zada or Mirrorwing Dragon and Fiery Gambit it isn't an infinite combo but even a small number of goblin tokens out usually allows me to kill half the table and draw most of my library all for the low price of doing what I wanted to do to begin with

April 4, 2022 10:55 a.m.

Azdranax says... #22

Magda, Brazen Outlaw is definitely the number one cEDH option right now for mono-red. It actually dominated the latest God of Commander tournament in Japan.

April 5, 2022 1:40 a.m.

chrismackay says... #23

As the proud owner of an admittedly kinda janky Zada deck, Storm-Kiln Artist and Young Pyromancer are your best friends. My deck is mostly focused on building a board and one-shotting the table with combat tricks, but a more controlling line using Zada as a draw engine with cantrips could be pretty fun. Possibility Storm can really screw with your opponents as you still get the copies of your spells from Zada anyway. Finally, A hilarious finisher I used once was Harnessed Lightning and Arcbond, The latter of which is just really good in Zada, the former being insane if you have any decent energy payoffs like Lightning Runner

April 5, 2022 5:34 a.m.

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