Commander Deck Tech: Double Epic Cascade
“Magictating” is defined as getting into the zone with your Magic the Gathering collection--thinking, planning, organizing, reminiscing about past games, and imagining future games. It is a combination of hard thinking about the game and calm meditation, reveling in the joy it brings you.
Double Epic Cascades is a Commander deck inspired by mechanics and living an impossible dream. Cascading with six mana spells is great. This deck is designed to take gross advantage of this. However, Cascade also allows us to enable a double Epic for the remainder of the game. This is magical Christmas land people, and I invite you to join me.
Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty is what makes this deck go from a typical ramp deck to becoming a rampaging beast. Stacking up value with Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty was my primary concern. However, I realized that this ability enables me to do something that is very difficult to pull off. I can cast Eternal Dominion and Cascade into Endless Swarm , and then end up with DOUBLE EPIC for the rest of the game. Additionally, if you manage to copy either spell as it is being cast, then you get double epics for the rest of the game. That’s magical Christmas land, and your opponents will just have to watch you pull gifts from their decks like a child looting a stocking on Christmas morning. Additionally, you get to crank out snake tokens that help gum up the ground while you steal their very best cards.
Having the ability to go either full swing into the double epics or opting for a more value based and varied grind is also a strength in this deck. I’ve included many creatures that allow you to get maximum value out of the cascade effect.
The untappers include perennial favorites in Great Whale, Palinchron, Peregrine Drake, and Treachery. While Great Whale and Palinchron enable Cascade and untapping we have Peregrine Drake and Treachery as bonus untappers that can often give us enough extra mana to cast yet another six mana spell. Or we can often just settle for tapping out again to play a measly five mana spell.
Mutating Archipelagore enables the Cascade at its actual converted mana cost, so you not only get to mutate, but you get Cascade as if you just paid seven mana. Hopefully you cascade into a six mana spell, and then get a third spell at 5 or less mana as well. That is gross. There are many other cards that cheat themselves out for less mana, but still trigger cascade for higher numbers. Ghalta, Primal Hunger is amazing to cast for a reduced rate, but allows us to Cascade into anything else in the deck. If we Cascade into anything with a CMC of six or greater, then we get to Cascade again.
Using our opponents’ cards to trigger our Cascades is also very powerful. Being able to use Diluvian Primordial to cast people’s spells for free, and then get more spells from our own deck on top of this is the type of play that can effectively end the game on the spot. When it’s left on the battlefield, Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty is a super turbo charged value engine.
Card Draw - How the Deck Keeps the Cards Flowing:
This deck has seventeen different draw spell effects. The idea is that we will be Cascading into them, stapling on a draw-three to every other spell we play. Having a spell replace itself is always important when you have to deal with many players at once. On top of this, being able to tack on several cards to each play is phenomenal. It is not often that this deck will run out of cards in hand. You will most likely be able to play with a mostly full hand as the game continues to develop. Expect to have many options and pathways to victory as you play. Your biggest weakness is succumbing to other people’s powerful plays. However, you should be able to overwhelm others with your own ridiculous board presence. Once you untap with Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty for a turn or two, the game can quickly become yours for the taking. A plethora of draw spells also ensures that we can bounce back from board wipes and resets that may occur.
Ramp - How the Deck Keeps up on Mana Development:
The most important aspect of this deck is the mana development. You must get to the six mana mark as fast as possible. The deck boasts thirteen spells to help you ramp. Your best defense is a strong offense. You need to drop Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty as soon as possible, and then proceed to get as much value as you can. It is likely that at some point you will have to recast Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty. Therefore, you need to build up a massive source of mana.
People will kill Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty on site. I can’t blame them, but they might also just let it go for a turn… after all, what’s the worst you can do in one turn with only six to seven mana? How about, Palinchron, cascade into Canal Courier, cascade into Treachery and float seven more mana, then cast Apex Devastator, cascade into Ancestral Vision, cascade into Sakashima's Protege, cascade into Diluvian Primordial, cascade into Knowledge Exploitation, cascade into Mind's Desire… I think you get the idea.
The key is to cast as much ramp as early as possible. It’s OK to take a slight beating in the beginning if you can develop into a state where you have 7-11 mana available. Once you hit this threshold, then you can often overpower most any deck. If you are going to make some changes to this list and build it your own way, then I suggest not cutting or replacing the ramp, unless you intend to replace it with similar ramp spells. The ramp is land based in this deck, because I feel it is the safest and least vulnerable to disruption. This allows the deck to play an all-star like Bane of Progress without suffering too badly from the consequences.
Answers - The Cards that Deal with Particular Situations:
Should this deck have more answers? Maybe. However, this deck demands other people have answers. You can have truly explosive turns that seem to just break open the game. If your opponents don’t answer you, well, you win. If they do find an answer, then you start all over again on your next turn. There’s plenty of card draw and ramping to keep you in the business of casting multiple threats a turn.
I didn’t include the new Courts in this deck. I suppose they would work well with the rogue/prowl sub theme, and I guess they might make other people’s lists. I didn’t want to lean too heavily on slower card draw. I wanted to draw cards that replace themselves immediately.
The mythic modal lands are absent, but simply because I don’t own enough of them to have them make the cut. If you have them hanging around, then you should probably be playing them.
I ended up building two versions of this deck, because I was torn between just being an overpowering beast and being super cute about living the DOUBLE EPIC dream. In one version I leaned heavily into copy effects that would allow me to double up on Endless Swarm and Eternal Dominion. In the other version I opted to keep things bigger and beefier. I decided that I still wanted the option of living the double epic dream, so I kept the epics in the deck (I just didn’t lean too heavily into copying them).
This deck isn’t cheap, but it can be built cheaply. I think that you could easily swap out any of these more expensive cards and slot in some much cheaper versions. I’m including a budget version to get people started as well. It’s nice to have a low budget starting point, so that you can come visit your LGS (flipsidegaming.com perhaps) and level up your deck week by week.
This is simple. Ramp, ramp, ramp.
Attack with and overpower the weaklings that have attempted to surround you. Little do these fools know they have merely provided you with an opportunity to crush them all at once!
Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty is a fantastic budget commander. It is also a fantastically powerful commander for larger budgets as well. This card is very powerful, but also very fair. It really embodies the general feel of cards from Commander Legends. The set has so much to offer, and I know that I will be mining this set for months and months. I have nearly 20 different decks planned out. This is coming from a guy that has fifty decks built (uniquely, and without sharing cards). I didn’t think I’d ever run out of Commander cards to play, and now I figure I can actually comb through my drawers and find even more spicy and oddball cards to make these decks even more fun to play.
Simic decks are pretty cool, and I really enjoy playing them. Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty offers all the fun of ramping into big creatures, but also gives you the ability to refill your hand, cast multiple creatures a turn, and do it all in a big way. I loved building this deck and its several forms, and I think that I will personally be leaning toward the balanced version of it, but I also enjoy the EPIC version, and even the budget version feels very strong. They are all very fun to play. Until next time, have fun and may your spell tables be full of doubly epic cascading victories.
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