20, Jun, 24

MH3 Commander Card Gives Rise to Broken Big Mana Strategy!

Article at a Glance

One aspect of MH3 that separated it from previous Modern Horizons sets was the inclusion of Commander decks. Despite the fact that the main set is clearly designed for the Modern format, these Commander Precons feature new cards and reprints that are, in fact, not Modern legal.

These Commander cards are legal in Eternal formats, however, and one card in particular has quickly made a name for itself in Legacy. Recently, a strange mono-green shell with a land toolbox package emerged victorious in a Magic Online Legacy Challenge.

There are a multitude of cards in the deck from the MH3 main set, but the most important addition is none other than Planar Nexus. Planar Nexus is a strange card with some neat applications, and this deck takes full advantage. This deck relies on land synergies to obtain a major mana advantage, and Planar Nexus is the glue that holds everything together.

The Role of Planar Nexus

Planar Nexus

While a large portion of the manabase is made up of tutor targets, three particular four-of lands contribute heavily to the deck’s explosive nature. These lands are none other than Cloudpost, Urza’s Tower, and Planar Nexus. You won’t see any other Tron lands in the decklist. Meanwhile, only two copies of Glimmerpost are included. This may seem unusual at first glance, but thanks to Planar Nexus, these decisions make a lot of sense.

Planar Nexus is quite interesting in the sense that it does very little on its own. The goal is to pair Planar Nexus with other non-basic lands that reward you for playing lands of a specific type. For instance, Planar Nexus functions as a Desert, so you can sacrifice it to Scavenger Grounds in Commander when applicable. Here, though, the relevant land types are Locus, Urza’s, Mine, and Power Plant.

The objective is to combine copies of Planar Nexus with Cloudpost or Urza’s Tower. For Cloudpost’s sake, Planar Nexus counts as a Locus, enabling Cloudpost to tap for additional mana. In the case of Urza’s Tower, because Planar Nexus has the Urza’s, Mine, and Power Plant types all rolled up in one, you can tap Urza’s Tower for three mana!

This opens the door for you to play some potent spells ahead of schedule. Playing The One Ring on turn two off Planar Nexus and Urza’s Tower, for example, can let you quickly run away with the game. Your mana advantage will continue to grow as you find more copies of Urza’s Tower and Cloudpost, and this deck plays ample ways to find your important lands.

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Tutors and Unique Lands

Bojuka Bog

Obviously, when you have access to Planar Nexus, the world is your oyster. The problem is that, in some games, you won’t always draw it. Urza’s Tower and Cloudpost are not impressive cards without support. Luckily, this deck features plenty of ways to tutor up the lands you want.

At the top of the list, Crop Rotation gives you the luxury to search for whatever you need in an efficient manner. Sowing Mycospawn is a fantastic new addition that accomplishes the same task. Importantly, Sowing Mycospawn doesn’t even have to resolve for you to get access to the land you want. A full playset of Once Upon a Time makes an appearance as well, which can dig for specific lands and offers a high degree of flexibility.

Similar to Primeval Titan strategies in Modern, this deck also showcases a plethora of unique lands to grab depending on the situation. Playing against Reanimator? Get Bojuka Bog. Facing a go-wide creature deck? Find The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale.

Notably, unlike Primeval Titan, Sowing Mycospawn and Crop Rotation put lands into play untapped. This can be essential against Dark Depths decks, letting you find and activate Wasteland right away to break up the combo or get Karakas and immediately bounce a Marit Lage token.

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Disruption and Haymakers

Vexing Bauble

Most of the rest of the deck is made up of either disruptive elements to help prolong the game or win conditions to help close the game. Vexing Bauble is an elite piece of interaction. Not only is it strong against Mox Opal strategies, but it makes it trivial to resolve your haymakers in the face of Force of Will, too.

Disruptor Flute is another cheap MH3 addition that can mess with your opponent. Playing Disruptor Flute proactively can be very strong against a variety of combo decks. Against decks that rely on activated abilities, such as Dark Depths combo, Disruptor Flute absolutely shines.

Once you have built up a sufficient mana supply, there are a few cards that let you end the game in short order. Karn, the Great Creator is a card you can play early that scales with the amount of mana you have. Both Mycosynth Lattice and Walking Ballista out of the sideboard have the potential to win games singlehandedly.

Otherwise, this deck does play singleton copies of Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger and Emrakul, the Aeons Torn to completely shut the door. These cards easily castable in the late game. When necessary, you can use Crop Rotation or Sowing Mycospawn to find [tooltip]Eye of Ugin, which in turn can tutor up your big Eldrazi.

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Strengths and Weaknesses

Blood Moon

This deck’s performance is truly remarkable, and there’s a lot to like about how the deck is constructed. The utility land package combined with the presence of Vexing Bauble and Disruptor Flute gives you a much better shot against a range of combo decks than traditional big mana strategies normally would have. This deck’s ability to assemble a ton of mana quickly makes Daze an irrelevant piece of interaction. Wasteland can certainly be annoying to play against, but unless the opponent has an aggressive start, rebuilding isn’t too tough.

Blood Moon, on the other hand, is a bit problematic. The mono-red prison matchup is far from ideal. On top of being vulnerable to Blood Moon, this strategy lacks removal for an early Broadside Bombardiers. Obviously, this deck has little recourse if your Doomsday or Storm opponent can go off before you can land Vexing Bauble or Disruptor Flute.

Assuming you can dodge broken starts, though, this deck covers its bases pretty well. It’s really cool to see such a unique Commander card in Planar Nexus have a big impact in Legacy. MH3 is chock full of powerhouses across the board, so keep an eye out for any other innovative archetypes that pop up abusing the new cards.

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