Commander Deck Of The Week: Food Chain Prossh, Skyraider Of Kher

Bennie Smith embraces his inner Dragon (and combo Commander player) with his Deck of the Week built around Food Chain and Prossh, Skyraider of Kher.

Prossh, Skyraider of Kher
Prossh, Skyraider of Kher, illustrated by Todd Lockwood

Back when the Commander 2013 precon decks came out – holy cats, has it been nearly 10 years? – I immediately wanted to build around Prossh, Skyraider of Kher. Prossh was a Dragon, which always felt fitting for a format that began life as Elder Dragon Highlander.

Prossh, Skyraider of Kher

But the kicker for me was the fact that when Prossh entered the battlefield, it created a bunch of 0/1 Kobold tokens.  And I just happened to have the Kobold support cards from Legends in a box gathering metaphorical dust in my closet, waiting for Kobold support since 1994.

Kobold Drill Sergeant Kobold Overlord

Kobold Taskmaster Rohgahh of Kher Keep

So, when I originally built Prossh, my plot was to kill people with all the 0/1 Kobolds that Prossh made, using some of these cards and others, like Beastmaster Ascension, to pump up the zero-power critters and attack for lethal.  I’d round out the deck with a bunch of Jund Good Stuff cards, grind value, and eventually win through combat.  Pretty much the ideal Bennie Commander deck.

The problem arose when some maniac threw Food Chain into the deck and proceeded to start killing pods with combo kills, and as more and more people heard about that style of deck, more and more people started assuming that my Prossh deck was going to similarly combo kill people. So, for a while I was “that guy,” telling my opponents when I took out my deck, “Oh no, don’t worry—it’s not Combo Prossh—there’s no Food Chain in it.” 

Food Chain

Strangers would have to gamble on whether to take my word for it or to play it safe and focus on countermeasures pointed in my direction early in the game.

Embracing the Chain

Eventually, I stopped playing Prossh except when in the company of friends who knew my Prossh deck wasn’t that kind of Prossh deck.  As my stable of Commander decks grew, I played it less and less until I started thinking about cEDH and higher-powered Commander decks and how that approach to Commander is outside my preferred play style. 

I tend to like medium-powered decks with a fair amount of interaction, where everyone gets a chance to have their deck Do the Thing before the game concludes. As Commander has grown as a format, so has the audience for people who play on the more competitive end of the spectrum, so I decided that maybe I should have one or more decks available that could at least hang at that power level if the opportunity to play like that presented itself. If strangers were going to assume my Prossh deck was a combo deck to be feared, I should go ahead and make it that way.  Heck, I even happened to have a Food Chain gathering metaphorical dust in my closet.

It took time to power up the deck, trimming out the fun-of selections for the more optimized and efficient cards. There are still some cards that I consider “Bennie” cards that you’d probably not see in a typical Food Chain Prossh deck, but I feel like they are still good enough at the upper power levels. Let’s dig in!


Demonic Tutor Vampiric Tutor

My “go fetch any card in your deck” tutor cards are pretty much retired these days, but for the higher-powered games, they’re a must.  After all, you want to consistently be able to find Food Chain for your Food Chain Prossh deck!

Food Chain Combos

Food Chain Squee, the Immortal Eternal Scourge

Beyond Prossh, I wanted to include the two other creatures that combo with Food Chain.  Not only will they let you “go off” with the combo engine, they can even help you get back Prossh from the command zone if it’s been stranded there by a high commander tax.  Occasionally, Squee can serve as a chump blocker you can keep bringing back from the graveyard if you need to.

Tokens Matter

Cryptolith Rite Chatterfang, Squirrel General Beastmaster Ascension

Beastmaster Ascension and Cryptolith Rite are holdovers from when this deck was a Kobold deck, but both of them are powerful enough to still command their slots in the current version. Chatterfang was a recent addition to the deck, but it also seems like a high-powered card that synergizes with what the deck wants to be doing anyway. Checking EDHREC, it looks like Chatterfang is in half of the Prossh decks, with a +38% synergy score, so I think I’m on to something there.

Creature Triggers

Devilish Valet Prosperous Innkeeper Purphoros, God of the Forge

Purphoros is a win condition with Food Chain and Prossh or either of the two creatures we can cast from exile, but even without the engine card, Purphoros can really knock our opponents’ life totals quite fast. Devilish Valet can pretty easily one-shot kill an opponent with a single casting of Prossh and its six (at least) Kobold tokens doubling the Devil’s power seven times – from 1 to 2 to 4 to 8 to 16 to 32 to 64, with trample to push through blockers.

Prosperous Innkeeper provides a little mana boost and incremental lifegain that might help out in some situations.  In a pinch, it can be a Prossh snack.


Aeve, Progenitor Ooze Skull Storm Genesis Storm

I consider the two “commander storm” cards Skull Storm and Genesis Storm to be my signature inclusions in the Food Chain Prossh archetype, the idea being if I can “go off” with Food Chain and Prossh and yet not be able to kill all of my opponents for some reason, for the rest of the game these two cards will be bonkers to draw.

Aeve, Progenitor Ooze is a recent addition with the idea that Food Chain can potentially chain a few creature spells together in one turn and then cast Aeve and make a bunch of copies; I did exactly that in my most recent game playing Prossh, and since my creatures had haste with Anger in the graveyard, I was able to finish off my last opponent in the same turn. 

Press Damage

Kediss, Emberclaw Familiar Jeska, Thrice Reborn Embercleave Rancor Berserk

Outside of wins from the Food Chain combo engines, Prossh is evasive and can just hit really hard by snacking on expendable creatures in combat. I wanted ways to leverage that more ordinary method of attacking life totals with things like Berserk and Embercleave. Jeska, Thrice Reborn can triple the damage to an opponent, and Kediss, Emberclaw Familiar can have it deal damage to each of my opponents.

Card Draw

Blood for the Blood God! Radha, Heart of Keld Beast Whisperer Stinging Study Plumb the Forbidden Greater Good Timeless Witness Skullclamp Harmonize

I’ve got a lot of decent card draw spells in the deck, from the raw card draw of Harmonize and Stinging Study, to the card selection of Radha, Heart of Keld. I just recently added Blood for the Blood God! from Warhammer 40,000 Commander to the deck with the idea that I can easily discount most if not all the generic mana part of the spell’s mana value by sacrificing creatures to Prossh. Instant speed, draw eight cards and deal eight damage to each opponent for the downside of discarding your hand first?  Count me in!

Mana Ramp

Gaea's Cradle Mana Crypt Sol Ring Mana Vault Ignoble Hierarch Goblin Anarchomancer Dockside Extortionist Wall of Roots Arcane Signet

I own one Gaea’s Cradle and one Mana Crypt. Both of them are bonkers powerful, and so both of them live in this deck. And due to the power level that I’ll be playing this deck in, Dockside Extortionist slots right in as well.

Goblin Anarchomancer is a little questionable since discounting mana costs to cheat Prossh onto the battlefield a turn earlier means that you’ll make one fewer Kobold, but discounting so many other spells has kept it in my list so far.


Vandalblast Terminate Beast Within Force of Vigor Krosan Grip Tragic Slip Go for the Throat Gorilla Shaman

Jund has a lot of removal options, and since I like to have a fair amount of removal in all of my Commander decks, I’m using a bunch of them. Gorilla Shaman is my “tech” card, mostly here to chop down on Treasure tokens that would otherwise linger for another big turn, but it’s awesome to occasionally snipe a Mana Crypt or Sol Ring. One thing I don’t have is a battlefield sweeper, but I haven’t really missed having a card like Damnation so far.


Rhythm of the Wild Urabrask the Hidden Anger Xenagos, God of Revels

Haste wins games, and Anger is the perfect enabler here—Prossh can snack on it to put it in the graveyard and you’re ready to rumble. I also like Rhythm of the Wild as both a haste enabler and hoser for counterspells against my creature spells; sadly, it won’t work on my creature tokens, so I couldn’t play Prossh and attack with all my Kobolds the same turn to charge up Beastmaster Ascension.  Urabrask provides haste and also disrupts my opponents from playing out blockers or their own hasty attackers. And Xenagos, God of Revels gives haste but also doubles an attacker’s power, which can combine with something like Berserk and Jeska to dish out an explosive amount of damage.


Deathrite Shaman Veil of Summer Tamiyo's Safekeeping Heroic Intervention Nihil Spellbomb Scavenging Ooze Prowling Serpopard Manglehorn Cindervines Opposition Agent Destiny Spinner

As with removal, I also like to have a fair amount of interaction in all of my Commander decks, and I’ve got some here that are aimed for the high-powered environment, like Veil of Summer and Opposition Agent. Prowling Serpopard and Destiny Spinner are other ways to shut down counterspells, and I’ve also got some graveyard hate in the form of Deathrite Shaman, Nihil Spellbomb and Scavenging Ooze. Cindervines is a little extra removal for an enchantment or artifact, but in the meantime it turns the screws on spell-heavy decks, especially storm decks.

I’d like to shout out Manglehorn; while it destroys an artifact on the way down, it also slows down those nutty Treasure decks that plan on generating a ton of Treasures and sacrificing them all in a single big turn. This and Gorilla Shaman are specifically here to slow that crap down.

The List

Okay, here is the full decklist:

Prossh, Skyraider of Kher
Bennie Smith
Test deck on 01-27-2023
Magic Card Back

Here are the deck stats from our friends at Archidekt:

What must-have cards might I have missed including in this deck?  Are there any cool new cards from Phyrexia: All Will Be One that I should consider?

On a side note, if you’re a Prossh fan, I’d like to give a shout-out to my good friend and producer for my ebook The Complete Commander, MJ Scott! I had a section in my book that focused on building around Prossh, and she capped the chapter off with some sweet Prossh fan fiction called “A Greater Good.” Here’s a fun excerpt:

Talk to Me

Do me a solid and follow me on Twitter!  I run polls and get conversations started about Commander all the time, so get in on the fun!  You can also find my LinkTree on my profile page there with links to all my content.

I’d also love it if you followed my Twitch channel TheCompleteCommander, where I do Commander, Brawl and sometimes other Magic-related streams when I can.  If you can’t join me live, the videos are available on demand for a few weeks on Twitch, but I also upload them to my YouTube channel.  You can also find the lists for my paper decks over on Archidekt if you want to dig into how I put together my own decks and brews. 

And lastly, I just want to say: let us love each other and stay healthy and happy. 

Visit my Decklist Database to see my decklists and the articles where they appeared!