The Commander’s Chair – All Hail the King

Saturday night was the last day to submit a deck for the Reaper King contest.  I got a lot of great submissions and deciding the winner was very difficult.

Something I find interesting; the one and only card to make it into every deck is Scarecrone. Not every decklist runs basic lands, but every deck runs this card.  There is not much I can say about this that you do not already know.  I have always loved this card.  It makes me happy to see that other people are aware of its power. 

Patrick Vorbroker

Patrick is helping a kid at my store put together a Caw-Blade deck.  The kid nearly had his trade binder destroyed by a trade shark.  Robert has been kind enough to offer some of his cards, in fair trade, to really help this kid out.  His decklist utilizes powerful game breaking spells and all five colors.  In addition to the trades we had agreed upon.  He is going to find a Chinese Legacy Weapon in his mail.  Also, instead of the regular English Nevinyrral’s Disk we had agreed upon, he will be receiving a FBB Korean Disk.

Luis Acosta

Luis is one of our writers here on red site wins.  His list was a five color fun stuff deck that looked like a lot of fun for casual gaming.  He was one of several people who included the Everlasting Torment + Melira Sylvok Outcast+ Necroskitter combo into his deck.  After the NPH release, I expect to see this combo around in every deck running Jund colors.   Luis is a staple contributor to the site. You should check out all the “Into the Arena” series.   He was another player who is helping the kid build a Caw-Blade deck. Since he plays on MTGO, I will be transferring him some cards online.

Seth Bernard

Seth’s deck is all about generating massive amounts of mana then casting ultra powerful spells. These spells include Exsanguinate, Genesis Wave and Comet Storm.  He has more ways to kill someone using near infinite amounts of mana than any deck I have ever seen.  For that, Seth will be receiving a Japanese Demonfire and a Japanese Red Sun’s Zenith.

Daniel Chapman

Daniel’s deck contains a number of cards I think are staples in any Reaper King deck. Daniel had the only submission to contain both Splinter Twin and Kiki-Jiki.  Both of these cards create situations that can win the game immediately.  His deck is missing the card that I think goes hand-in-hand with both of these cards.  That card is Thornbite Staff.  I am assuming Daniel hasn’t seen this interaction before.  So, I am sending Daniel a Foil Thornbite Staff to try out in any deck he plays Kiki-Jiki or Splinter Twin.

James Vogel

James turned in what is basically an Esper deck.  He gets some respect for being the only person to put in the Pili-Pala and Grand Architect combo.  His decklist is full of combinations that make people want to scoop up there cards and start over.  I am sending him a Japanese Teferi and a Foil Knowledge Pool to keep his combo streak going.

Josh Enke

Josh built a pretty stock Reaper+ Scarecrows deck.  Except, he goes all in on the enters-the-battlefield tactics.  It includes cards like Venser and Ghostway.  It also includes enough tutors to get whatever cards he wants.  What really makes his deck good? It doesn’t require Reaper King to take advantage of all these cards.  The deck is packed full of cards like Spine of Ish Sah and Duplicant.  This lets him dodge one of the big weaknesses that many of the decklist have.  Josh was a very large consideration for winning the entire competition.  He will be receiving a Foil Spine of Ish Sahas well as a playset of Japanese Ichor Wellsprings for his submission.

Erik Peters

Erik’s deck nearly won on originality alone.  He is the only submission that takes advantage of Reaper King’s converted mana cost.  Cards like Rush of Knowledge can abuse the 10 CMC of Reaper King, even though you normally only pay 5.  The card that really makes this deck stand out in my mind is Juniper Order Ranger.  I have never used this in Commander, but I am going to start.  This ability is absurdly powerful when combined with anything with persist.  Erik’s deck had so many synergies that I had to go through the deck several times before understanding them.  I will need to work out what to award him with for this kind of a deck.  He may not have technically won, but I will make sure he gets a prize that reflects how good his deck is.

Final 2 – I had a nearly impossible time trying to decide which of the following two contestants should win.  Both decks are incredible strong, resilient and had ways to win without Reaper King in play.

The Runner Up – Chas Andres

Everyone reading this probably already knows who Chas is.  If you don’t, you should take a quick hop on over to and read his articles.  Chas is the real deal as both a trader and a player.  He is also a stand up guy.  His deck is a combination of Scarecrow tribal and powerful enchantments like Conspiracy and Aura Shards.  He had several ways to combo off to kill a player.  My favorite part of his deck was the inclusion of the Grozoth + Bringers package.  The way this works is, you play Grozoth and then put all the Bringers into your hand.  Chas also got bonus points for including the first printed scarecrow, Scarecrow, in his library.  I will be posting Chas’s list in the comment section later this week.  Chas will be receiving 5 foil+foreign cards in my trade binder of his choosing.

The Winner – Uriah Oxford

I don’t know Uriah, but he must be one hell of a magic player.  His combos revolve mainly around Intruder Alarm + Natures Revolt or Conspiracy + Aluren.  The deck has great synergy with all of the cards inside. This deck can create a storm of destruction in quick order.  He also included an old school scarecrow, Straw Soldiers.  This card is the only non-changeling, aside from Reaper King, that has colored mana in its casting cost. Uriah Oxford’s list will be posted in the comments later this week.  He will receive the Judge Foil Wheel of Fortune, the Foil Reaper King as well as several other random pimp cards for Commander

I am happy to have received so many submissions for the contest.  If any of the contestants would like further feedback on their list, I will be happy to help out.  On that note, anyone looking to build a new Commander deck or tweek a current deck can email me at  I love discussing tech and working out new ideas.  Anyone who won anything in this contest, please email me so we can get you your cards.

I will be putting out an extra article this week, since this article was light on Commander strategy and technology.



About SwordsToPlow

I like building and tuning decks to make them more fun and more effective.

Posted on May 3, 2011, in Extras, The Commander's Chair and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. Freakin’ sweet! Can’t wait to choose some cards!

    Also excited to see Uriah’s list. I said to myself that if I won I’d build the deck IRL, and I might do it anyhow by combining some of my tech with his.

  2. kinda disappointed I lost out to the “combo decks” I intentionally made the deck combo-lite as to encourage healthy group game play. Oh well, I’m glad you liked it. I’d be interested to hear further thoughts you have on it.

  3. auranalchemist

    Woot! I am glad my first EDH deck wasn’t a complete vommit fest. lol

  4. Sweet! I almost put in the Grand Architect/Pili-Pala combo too. In hindsight I would probably cut Galepowder Mage for Pili-Pala. I can’t wait to see the other deck lists. I love brewing EDH decks and look forward to more contests like this. Thanks, Sean!

  5. I am still in shock that I won! First off thanks for hosting such a great contest Sean, it was fun. Secondly as you guy will see the deck has a lot of synergy but the primary two combos are really off the wall and complicated. I don’t know how this deck would actually do in a game but I have all the pieces, so it would be tempting to build it and see.

  6. Seth Barnard

    Awesome contest! I really enjoyed forging that deck and glad to see the winner actually had straw soldiers! That’s awesome!! Congrats Uriah and thanks for the contest Sean!

  7. SwordsToPlow

    #3 = Erik Peters
    #2 = Chas Andres
    #1 = Uriah Oxford
    Korona – The Ultimate Group Hug
    Arcum – All foil or foreign. It doesn’t see much play right now.

  8. Damn, sorry I missed it.
    I’m sure my Reaper King deck is the only one built like this.

    Reaper King + Artificial Evolution = fun

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: