Five Commander Cards You Need To Pair With Tom Bombadil

Tom Bombadil opens new doors for enchantment-based Commander decks. Chase Carroll showcases five key cards to pair with the Lord of the Rings preview.

Dance of the Manse
Dance of the Manse, illustrated by Yeong-Hao Han

I don’t think I’m alone when I say just how excited I am for Magic’s The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth set. The Lord of the Rings was a large part of my childhood. I remember watching the movies during a family movie night when I was around six or so.  Remember being spellbound by scenery, terrified of the Orcs in the birthing pit, and laughing at my mother who was crushing hard on Legolas. When I saw that we would be getting Middle-earth in Magic, I quickly ran to my local bookstore to pick up and read the books I haven’t opened since middle school. 

Seeing a universe I adore translate so seamlessly into Magic has ignited many a brewing spark within me. From Gandalf to Gollum, there are so many exciting pieces to brew around, and we haven’t even hit official preview season. However, one card has interested me the most: Tom Bombadil.

Tom Bombadil

Move over, Go-Shintai of Life’s Origin, we have a new archetype five-color commander now, and it’s time for Sagas to shine! With Sagas being viable in five colors now, I wanted to share some pieces I think would be powerhouses in Tom Bombadil.

Dance of the Manse

Dance of the Manse

The sad fate when playing Sagas is that, more often than not, they are temporary. They are typically meant to stay for three turns and hit the graveyard. They are fun, but fleeting. Recursion is always a welcome sight, but who has the money for a card like Replenish?!

Thankfully, there’s an option that’s way more fun and exciting: Dance of the Manse. This X-spell allows you to return non-Aura enchantments from the graveyard to the battlefield with the added bonus of making them 4/4 creatures. Not only are you able to get your precious Sagas back, you can swing with them as well! Paired with the right cards (more on this later), you can perpetually keep your Saga creatures around, making yourself a synergistic little threat.

Moon-Blessed Cleric

Moon-Blessed Cleric

Wizards of the Coast (WotC) has provided us with some amazing commons and uncommons within the past few years, and Moon-Blessed Cleric is at the top of the list. There is beauty within the simplicity of this design that I greatly appreciate. It’s a tutor on a body.

This Cleric is a great budget option for those who don’t wish to spend a lot of money on pieces like Enlightened Tutor or Idyllic Tutor. Plus, it can be blinked (which is a welcome strategy in Saga decks) to get you maximum value and maximum searchage. The value is there, plus having a body definitely doesn’t hurt in an enchantment-focused deck.

Doomwake Giant

Doomwake Giant

What if I told you that you could have a permanent battlefield wipe that only affects your opponents? Weeeeeeell, constellation cards are the pieces that keep on giving. A constellation card’s ability is activated whenever it or another enchantment enters the battlefield under your control. This is pure value.

So what makes Doomwake Giant so special? Well, it reduces the power and toughness of the creatures your opponents control every time you cast an enchantment. With enough enchantments, it can turn into an intense and ruthless battlefield wipe. Sure, you could run your Austere Commands or your Extinguish All Hopes, or you could run this for maximum value attached to a big, beefy body! 

Nylea’s Colossus 

Nylea's Colossus

Whenever I build a deck, the first question is always, ‘How do I win?’ Nylea’s Colossus is how you win in Tom Bombadil. I feel like many constellation creatures are overlooked when brewing enchantment-focused decks and I am unsure why. Perhaps others focus more on the intense amount of card draw that is typically baked into this archetype. Regardless, Nylea’s Colossus can win you games in Tom Bombadil.

The Colossus doubles the power and toughness of a creature you control when it or another enchantment enters the battlefield under your control. When this creature enters the battlefield, Tom becomes an 8/8. When another Saga enters, he becomes a 16/16. If a third enters, he is a 32/32. All you need is Whitewater Naiads to make him unblockable, and suddenly you have killed your opponent with lethal, unblockable commander damage. I feel like these two pieces, especially the Colossus, are overlooked because of their intimidating mana value. However, enchantment-themed decks have access to a lot of cost reduction. I see these being fun and swingy pieces that make Bombadil go from a fun theme deck to serious business. 

Resourceful Defense

Resourceful Defense

Bombadil is an interesting commander due to the fact that Sagas aren’t meant to stick around. When the final chapter is removed, the Saga is sacrificed. Heck, this can happen even sooner with certain Sagas that have the read ahead ability. Rather than wait for the second or third lore counter, you can get that ability immediately. However, there are times when having multiple activations of earlier Sagas can be beneficial. This is where Resourceful Defense comes in.

This has to be one of my favorite enchantments of all time. I currently utilize it in my Cadric Superfriends deck. Why? Because this card allows me to move counters from one permanent to another…any kind of counter. This includes +1/+1 counters, loyalty counters, and, yes, lore counters. Moving lore counters from one Saga to another can mean faster activations of certain chapters or more activations of earlier chapters. Pieces like Kiora Bests the Sea God, The Horus Heresy, and Fable of the Mirror-Breaker become all the more powerful and annoying. 

A Saga Only Beginning

As a Commander aficionado, it is exciting to see niche archetypes get the love and attention they truly deserve. It is my hope that we will see more Saga love and support in the upcoming Lord of the Rings set, as Tom Bombadil has given us only a taste of what may be to come. May your chapters never end. Happy reading, deckbuilders.