Dromoka’s Haymakers

The Dragonlords have carved out their place in Standard, but now it’s time for Bennie Smith to solidify their place in Commander! This week, see what he has in store for Dragonlord Dromoka!

Before I get started, if you’re a Commander fan, be sure to check out the 200th installment of Dear Azami, where none other than Magic Hall of Famer and
Next Level Magic author Patrick Chapin gives his take on a Dragonlord Silumgar Commander deck. Patrick is obviously well-known as a very competitive
tournament Magic player, but it’s always nice to hear that players like him can turn the competitiveness down a notch and find enjoyment in the other
things about multiplayer Commander that makes the format so much fun. It was awesome to read him write this:

While I have played competitive heads-up Commander before, my preferred style is a big group of like-minded players, a bit of politics, and a lot of
just hanging out while a game happens to be going on.

I would guess that the suggestions I make today are generally net positive for expected win percentage, however, my main goal in Commander is having a
good time, so I generally bias towards cards and strategies I can use to have a good time. I like the diplomacy side, the wheeling and dealing, the
ability to be a king-maker or a threat that people don’t want to attack for fear of retribution. I am careful about making too many enemies at the same
time, though I’d rather be in the thick of things than just sitting by and watching everyone else make moves.

So when you’re done here, go check out Dear Azami 200, especially if you’re
considering making a Commander deck around Dragonlord Silumgar.

Speaking of Dragonlords, today I want to present to you a Commander deck built around another sweet legend from Dragons of Tarkir: Dragonlord

Now, Dragonlord Dromoka would make a perfectly fine commander to build a general Green/White goodstuff deck chock full of all your favorite spells. It’s
sufficiently large to command respect on the board with flying and lifelink, two solid abilities to have in a multiplayer game. But what really makes her
special is this one-two punch:

Dragonlord Dromoka can’t be countered.


Your opponents can’t cast spells during your turn.

This means short of an opponent playing something like Time Stop or Venser, Shaper Savant, they cannot stop you from casting Dragonlord Dromoka when you
have the mana to, and once it’s on the battlefield the world is your oyster. Those spells in your hand you’ve been dying to cast? Go for it! Dragonlord
Dromoka’s got your back.


Armadillo Cloak, Sword of Feast and Famine, Gift of Immortality, Scapeshift, Predatory Urge, Soul’s Majesty, Hunter’s Prowess, Mirari’s Wake, Celestial Mantle, Duplicant, Sun Titan, Mythic Proportions, Praetor’s Counsel, Green Sun’s Zenith

If you’re anything like me, there are a ton of Magic cards that look so cool you’re just dying to play them… and yet sometimes you hesitate even putting
them in your deck because you worry an opponent is going to spoil the fun. I mean, of course you should expect your opponent to interact with you and not
just sit back and watch you kill them, but there are some spells that just get really, really bad if your opponent decides to interact with you at an
inopportune time. This is particularly the case with sweet auras like Gift of Immortality or Predatory Urge, where one removal spell can put you on the
wrong side of a two-for-one. Playing a powerful equipment card like Sword of Feast and Famine and paying the equip cost only to have the target creature
hit with a removal spell can mean an entire turn lost. Soul’s Majesty and Hunter’s Prowess can go from hero to zero in a hurry if the targeted creature is
destroyed in response. Then there are really expensive spells like Praetor’s Counsel or Green Sun’s Zenith that you’d hate to dump a ton of mana into it
only to have it hit with a counterspell. But Dragonlord Dromoka’s got your back for any of these spells; with her in play, you can cast these sweet spells
with confidence. I mean seriously, who doesn’t want to cast Mythic Proportions on a creature – maybe even Dragonlord Dromoka herself – and give a creature
+8/+8 and trample, at least until the end of the turn? That’s the stuff of epic storytelling right there, and you don’t have to worry about a pesky blue
mage ruining the plot.

Back-ups and Stand-ins

Devoted Caretaker, Grand Abolisher, Saffi Eriksdotter, Swiftfoot Boots, Ephemeral Shields, Dauntless Escort, Eternal Witness, Thrun, the Last Troll;
Sigarda, Host of Herons; Privileged Position, Adarkar Valkyrie, Spearbreaker Behemoth

While Dragonlord Dromoka does a great job of protecting herself on your turn, once you pass to your opponents’ turns, the shields are down. Removal.dec
will be very interested in taking down Dragonlord Dromoka before you get the chance to play any more haymakers, so I wanted to include some ways to protect
it other than the usual suspects like Swiftfoot Boots. The color combination of green and white allows us to use Saffi Eriksdotter, one of my all-time
favorite Magic cards since she can take the hit for any single destroy effect targeting Dromoka, and is particularly great in conjunction with Sun Titan.
We can also utilize Adarkar Valkyrie to potentially provide multiple saves. Ephemeral Shields, Dauntless Escort, and Spearbreaker Behemoth do a nice job of
providing indestructibility.

As much as we’d like to count on having our commander on the battlefield – especially now that we don’t have to worry about Dragonlord Dromoka getting
tucked – sometimes it will be stranded in the command zone due to mana constraints. When that happens, it’s nice to have back-up, and for that, the
hexproof team of Thrun, the Last Troll or Sigarda, Host of Herons can step in to take on a lot of these same haymaking spells. Grand Abolisher can shut
down opposing spells during your turn too if you can get it to stick.


Pithing Needle, Darksteel Mutation, Phyrexian Revoker, Song Of The Dryads, Aven Mindcensor, Angel of Finality, Voidstone Gargoyle, Exclusion Ritual

Speaking of the new rule on tucking commanders, a lot of folks expressed concern about certain commanders being too difficult to deal with. White (and to a
lesser extent green) offer some interesting solutions to those problems, and so I made room for them in the deck. None of them are permanent solutions, but
they will demand an answer before shenanigans can ensue. Devoted Caretaker is a pretty good way to provide a buffer from targeted answers to these spells.


Vitu-Ghazi, the City-Tree , Oran-Rief, the Vastwood , Gaea’s Cradle, Skullclamp, Aura Mutation, Jade Mage, Elvish Farmer, Mycologist, Night Soil,
Fecundity, Aura Shards, Spontaneous Generation, Sublime Archangel, Citanul Hierophants, Eldrazi Monument, Akroma’s Memorial

When I was researching haymaker spells to cast while Dromoka had my back, I ran across Spontaneous Generation and recalled its role in one of my most
favorite “group game” decks from way back in the day (pre-Commander/EDH). I had Fecundity to turn creatures dying (and my creatures were always dying) into
cards in hand, and I had Spontaneous Generation to turn all those cards in hand into a bunch of creatures. I even had Collective Unconscious to then turn
those creatures into more cards in hand (often drawing more copies of Spontaneous Generation). With that in mind, realizing that I had a fair number of
high-impact, high-cost spells already slotted for the deck, I figured I could fill out slots lower in the curve with cards that play nicely with the
Saproling theme. Elvish Farmer and its time-shifted cousin Mycologist can slowly crank out Saprolings and turn any of them into two points of life and a
card if you have a Fecundity in play. Skullclamp does some pretty gross things with Fecundity and Saprolings.

While Saprolings make great fodder for dying (hel-lo Eldrazi Monument), they can be useful for other things too. You can milk them for a lot of mana with
Gaea’s Cradle or Citanul Hierophants, and you can get some serious exalted pips from your Sublime Archangel-a wonderful way to boost your Dragonlord!

So here’s what I’ve got cooked up for Dragonlord Dromoka. It looks both fun and powerful!

Dragonlord Dromoka
Bennie Smith
Test deck on 05-08-2015

Land Tax + Emeria, the Sky Ruin

I usually don’t run Emeria, the Sky Ruin in a multicolor deck, but I think between Land Tax and Scapeshift I could easily bring Emeria online and provide a
nice lategame source of creature recursion – or with Eternal Witness and Skullclamp, any card recursion.

So what do you think? What sort of haymaker spells would you cast when Dragonlord Dromoka has your back?


Before I go for today, a couple quick words on Standard. First off, a hearty congratulations for my esteemed editor Cedric Phillips for his deep run at the
Portland Starcitygames.com Open this past weekend. He made top 8 with Atarka Red, and while it’s always a pleasure to have him doing live coverage of other
players, it was especially great to be reminded that Cedric made the Magic scene by being a great player. Always great getting to see him in action.

Also, for those of you who were curious about the Mono-Green Five-Color Dragons deck I proposed last week, I did get to run the deck at FNM last week.
While my record was a rather inauspicious 1-2-1 for its inaugural run, I did really like a lot of what the deck had going on and think the concept has
promise. Den Protector (with Deathmist Raptor) is a very strong pillar of the format, and having that in the deck with Dragonlord Ojutai – another pillar
of the format – felt like I was doing some incredibly powerful things. I liked Maternal Witness and her pet Dino, and I liked the Dragons… the rest of the
cards, however, I’m still unsure of. Has anyone else messed around with the Five-Color Dragons concept in a green core? Would love to hear other people’s
thoughts on it. In the end, it may not be as good as the Megamorph Bant deck, but I think there’s still room to explore before I settle on that verdict.

New to Commander?

If you’re just curious about the format, building your first deck, or trying to take your Commander deck up a notch, here are some handy links:

Commander write-ups I’ve done
(and links to decklists):

Zurgo Bellstriker (Bellstriking Like a Boss)

Dragonlord Ojutai (Troll Shroud)

Karrthus, Tyrant of Jund (Dragons, Megamorphs, and Dragons)

Dromoka, the Eternal (One Flying Bolster Basket)

Shu Yun, the Silent Tempest (Tempests and Teapots)

Tasigur, the Golden Fang (Hatching Evil Sultai Plots)

Scion of the Ur-Dragon (Dragon Triggers for Everyone)

• Nahiri, The Lithomancer (Lithomancing for Fun and Profit)

Titania, Protector of Argoth (Titania’s Land and Elemental Exchange)

Reaper King (All About VILLAINOUS WEALTH)

Feldon of the Third Path (She Will Come Back to Me)

Sidisi, Brood Tyrant (Calling Up Ghouls with Sidisi)

Zurgo Helmsmasher (Two Times the Smashing)

Anafenza, the Foremost (Anafenza and Your Restless Dead)

Narset, Enlightened Master (The New Voltron Overlord)

Surrak Dragonclaw (The Art of Punching Bears)

Avacyn, Guardian Angel; Ob Nixilis, Unshackled; Sliver Hivelord (Commander Catchup, Part 3)

Keranos, God of Storms; Marchesa, the Black Rose; Muzzio, Visonary Architect (Commander Catchup, Part 2)

Athreos, God of Passage; Kruphix, God of Horizons; Iroas, God of Victory (Commander Catchup, Journey into Nyx Edition)

Kurkesh, Onakke Ancient (Ghost in the Machines)

Jalira, Master Polymorphist (JaliraPOW!)

Mishra, Artificer Prodigy (Possibility Storm Shenanigans)

Yisan, the Wanderer Bard (All-in Yisan)

Selvala, Explorer Returned (Everyone Draws Lots!)

Grenzo, Dungeon Warden (Cleaning Out the Cellar)

Karona, False God (God Pack)

Child of Alara (Land Ho!)

Doran, the Siege Tower (All My Faves in One Deck!)

Karador, Ghost Chieftain (my Magic Online deck)

Karador, Ghost Chieftain (Shadowborn Apostles & Demons)

King Macar, the Gold-Cursed (GREED!)

Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind ( Chuck’s somewhat vicious deck)

Roon of the Hidden Realm (Mean Roon)

Skeleton Ship (Fun with -1/-1 counters)

Vorel of the Hull Clade (Never Trust the Simic)

Anax and Cymede (Heroic Co-Commanders)

Aurelia, the Warleader ( plus Hellkite Tyrant shenanigans)

Borborygmos Enraged (69 land deck)

Bruna, Light of Alabaster (Aura-centric Voltron)

Damia, Sage of Stone ( Ice Cauldron shenanigans)

Emmara Tandris (No Damage Tokens)

Gahiji, Honored One (Enchantment Ga-hijinks)

Geist of Saint Traft (Voltron-ish)

Ghave, Guru of Spores ( Melira Combo)

Glissa Sunseeker (death to artifacts!)

Glissa, the Traitor ( undying artifacts!)

Grimgrin, Corpse-Born (Necrotic Ooze Combo)

Jeleva, Nephalia’s Scourge ( Suspension of Disbelief)

Johan (Cat Breath of the Infinite)

Jor Kadeen, the Prevailer (replacing Brion Stoutarm in Mo’ Myrs)

Karona, False God (Vows of the False God)

Lord of Tresserhorn (ZOMBIES!)

Marath, Will of the Wild ( Wild About +1/+1 Counters)

Melira, Sylvok Outcast ( combo killa)

Mirko Vosk, Mind Drinker ( Outside My Comfort Zone with Milling

Nefarox, Overlord of Grixis (evil and Spike-ish)

Nicol Bolas (Kicking it Old School)

Nylea, God of the Hunt ( Devoted to Green)

Oloro, Ageless Ascetic (Life Gain)

Oona, Queen of the Fae (by reader request)

Phage the Untouchable ( actually casting Phage from Command Zone!)

Phelddagrif (Mean Hippo)

Polukranos, World Eater (Monstrous!)

Reaper King (Taking Advantage of the new Legend Rules)

Riku of Two Reflections (

steal all permanents with
Deadeye Navigator + Zealous Conscripts


Roon of the Hidden Realm ( Strolling Through Value Town)

Ruhan of the Fomori (lots of equipment and infinite attack steps)

Savra, Queen of the Golgari ( Demons)

Shattergang Brothers (Breaking Boards)

Sigarda, Host of Herons ( Equipment-centric Voltron)

Skullbriar, the Walking Grave ( how big can it get?)

Sliver Overlord (Featuring the new M14 Slivers!)

Thelon of Havenwood ( Campfire Spores)

Varolz, the Scar-Striped (scavenging goodness)

Vorosh, the Hunter ( proliferaTION)

Xenagos, God of Revels (Huge Beatings)

Yeva, Nature’s Herald (living at instant speed)