29, Feb, 24

MTG Mutant Deck Offers Two Powerful Commanders!

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Article at a Glance

Featured here is none other than The Wise Mothman heading what could easily be the most interesting and new take on a classic Magic mechanic, milling! But this is Fallout, so we’re talking about the new rad mechanic which combines with +1/+1 counters and mutant sub-themes. Both Commanders that the deck employs utilize milling and rad so we’ll start there.

If you want a refresher on what the rad counter mechanic is, take a look here.

Wise and Strong

Functional, synergistic and not too much mana, The Wise Mothman gives you the ability to generate rad counters every turn. With no further help, you can easily grow your board every turn while also slowing chipping away at life totals. This trigger can only place a single counter on your creatures, but it can be doubled or tripled. Proliferate is an important ability because it impacts both rad and +1/+1 counters. Because of this, Inexorable Tide is one of your best support cards, but not the only one. A whole host of enchantments from Hardened Scales to Fraying Sanity all ensure that the second The Wise Mothman hits the board, it’s going to be a considerable threat.

What about your other potential commander? Can it compare to the simplicity and power of The Wise Mothman?

A Master

Even though it does not generate as much table-wide rad as the Mothman, The Master, Transcedent does its own thing quite well. While Mothman is busy flying and becoming a huge threat very quickly, the Master enjoys playing the waiting game. Thus, the Mothman is proactive, and the Master reactive.

Alongside Raul, Trouble Shooter, self-mill is a potential option to be explored and Vault 87: Forced Evolution gives you additional theft opportunities. As is, the deck is fairly stacked to Mothman’s advantage. The Master does not really benefit directly from the +1/+1 counters. However, if you draw into the mill and rad portion of the deck, well, the Master can control a table. Stealing a high impact creature each turn has potential. Many players will enjoy the Master being an Artifact Creature. Thus he can easily be untapped on each turn if you upgrade the deck. Four or more free creatures from graveyards per round is bonkers powerful.

Let’s Talk Removal

We’ve seen fair amounts of mass removal from the other Fallout decks, but Mutant Menace takes single target removal seriously. From Alpha Deathclaw to Atomize, the deck has cards that can deal with anything. Alpha Deathclaw in particular is worth pointing out because it can quite easily destroy two permanents, and then come back from the graveyard using Mortuary Mire to do it all over again. As far as reprints go, you have mass targeted removal in Casualties of War and the ubiquitous Putrefy.

Of course, that’s not to say the deck does not have a brutal board wipe or two. Nuclear Fallout can remove anything provided you have enough mana and also delivers an intense amount of rad on top of that. Because this deck is constantly growing, there’s a good chance that, say, -6/-6 could leave your creatures quite alive. The rest of the table, though, loses everything.

Rampaging Yao Guai easily clears the entire board of pesky artifact tokens along with most enchantments if you want it to while also being a huge body. While Mutant Menace really does not want to lose enchantments, artifacts are not nearly as necessary.

Speaking of Radiation

There are plenty of creatures packed into Mutant Menace that can add two rad per connection on combat damage. That said, Feral Ghoul delivers an absolutely soul shattering amount of rad to every single one of your opponents when it dies. Not only does the Ghoul gain counters when your other creatures die, you always have Mothman to keep it growing. It combos perfectly with Power Fist to force the issue. Block and it dies and you rad everyone. Don’t block and it grows even larger for more future rad.

Surprisingly, the next best card that can generate the most rad is Struggle for Project Purity if you choose the Enclave option. This method is way better than normal because they are gaining it during combat. Because of this timing, they cannot lose this rad until their next turn which allows you to proliferate it and combo it with cards like Vault 12: The Necropolis that count rad during your turn before they can get rid of any. Clearly rad is an interesting mechanic that this deck utilizes extremely well.

Mutants are Oddities

Meet Harold and Bob, First Numens. Say hi H&B! In any case the deck does have a mutant sub-theme and some of them are less than stellar. Here, the pair are a 3/3 for three which is not that relevant. Their primary ability? To die and become an Aura that has to enchant a Forest. The deck has five legal targets. The land base does not look bad but there are two “Island Swamps” and zero duals that are Forest. Furthermore, the deck runs Farseek which notably cannot search for a Forest. Finally, the deck features self mill. It’s entirely possible you mill the first Forest you would have drawn and simply never get one. I understand the flavor connection, but the deck itself could have been a little more helpful to Harold and Bob. Maybe they could have also had Forestwalk just to be a little better?

What about Lumbering Megasloth? It’s a huge monster, an 8/8 with Trample at probably only two or three mana. The downside is that it enters tapped and no other abilities. While it could draw eight cards from Vault 87: Forced Evolution it really doesn’t offer much else.

Luckily, you have significantly better Mutants like Lily Bowen, Raging Grandma, Strong the Brutish Thespian or Agent Frank Morrigan who all do a heck of a lot more on top of their creature type. The deck even has a go wide strategy with Watchful Radstag which can obviously get out of control very quickly. Marcus, Mutant Mayor is exceptional in this deck, fixing a creature with no counters to get that important first counter, and then turning every creature into potential card draw.

Speaking of odd, what is Piper Wright, Publick Reporter doing in this deck? Something, something, +1/+1 counters, something something, proliferate? Sure. This feels like a Murders at Karlov Manor card that somehow creeped into Mutant Menace. Much of the deck is very unified so the inclusion of Piper is somewhat discordant. Sometimes, though, you just need card draw and an extra +1/+1 counter I guess.

39 Lands

For a deck that dishes out rad, a land with “tap to draw a card…if you have rad” is excellent. It doesn’t begin and end there for Mariposa Military Base. The card is also a convenient “spell” that effectively says “pay one colorless, get two rad.” Taking up zero room in the deck’s build while increasing rad count is great.

You also have Tato Farmer that can help save any land you want from getting milled, so you do have a backup plan if milling goes poorly.

The overall mana base looks okay minus the aforementioned Forest issue. There are a lot of blue duals while the deck only has a single double blue pip card. Meanwhile, there are tons of double green and black cards. Be careful with your opener and you may still end up getting a little unlucky with self mill. There are plenty of dual lands to assist you though.

Mutants, Milling, and Melting

Unlike Hail Caesar, the mixture of cards in Mutant Menace don’t particularly care about order. It will be interesting to see if rad accrual strategies that combine a mixture of proliferate effects with some very specific cards, I’m looking at you Misinformation, become popular or if it remains primarily a +1/+1 counter deck with a mill sub-theme. One thing is certain, don’t ever mess with the Mothman. Ever. Look for the game play review and upgrade article soon!

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