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Building Gor Muldrak, Amphinologist in Commander


Hello folks! I hope that you are having a great day today! For the last seven weeks, I've built a Commander deck for you from a new legendary dork that debuted in Commander Legends. Today I want to continue that trend with Gor Muldrak, Amphinologist.

Before I do, however, let's look at some previous decks! Okay!

  1. A few weeks ago, I built a fun Jund midrange deck around Yurlok of Scorch Thrash that plays a little pillow forty, a little nice to everyone, with some fun dragon win cons. Check it out here.
  2. Then I built an enchantment-based Mardu deck around Ghen, Arcanum Weaver that combines the enchantment loving of White with the graveyard filling of Black. You can find it here.
  3. The following week I built a deck around Blim, Comedic Genius that gave away things like Rogue Skycaptain, Rainbow Vale, Sleeper Agent, and other Rakdos cards to help give away so you can ratchet up that life loss and card discard. You can grab it here.
  4. The next week built a deck around Amareth, the Lustrous. This awesome dragon wants you to build around one permanent type. Which did I choose? Probably the hardest: planeswalkers! Want to check out this Bant Buddies Build? It's here.
  5. Then I turned to Tuya Bearclaw and I built a nasty power matters decks in Gruul around Phyrexian Dreadnought and Illusionary Mask. It's pretty powerful. Wanna check it out? You can find it here!
  6. After I build the nasty Vintage combo around Tuya Bearclaw, I turned to the infamous Lich and his Disk, Nevinyrral, Urborg Tyrant. I built this control Zombie deck that wants to sweep the board over and over again, save for your stuff, and then win the game. You can check it out here.
  7. Then I turned to Golgari and Belbe, Corrupted Observer. I created a life-draining deck that has some synergies with the Group Slug archetype in Rakdos in order to trigger Ms. Belbe many times for that sweet mana. You can find it here.

There you are!

Now let's turn to Gor.

Building Gor Muldrak in EDH

Gor Muldrak, Amphinologist

This is our leader and inspiration for today's build, Gor Muldrak! He gives all your stuff protection from Salamanders. That's good because it's wider than the normal form of protection with just creatures and you get it as well! He'll protect against the tokens that we give foes and they'll likely swing elsewhere. It's a rare tribe though, so I want to push the theme.

Amphin Mutineer

The first place I want to dig is this cool friend from Commander Legends. This was the first card I added to my decklist. It'll give your foe a Salamander you can defend yourself from or swing through with ease. It'll serve as useful creature killing and it suits the deck very nicely indeed.

The next card I added was Unnatural Selection. For a humble generic mana, you can make any dork the creature type of your choice. If your foe swings your way you can en-Salamander their dorks and then block without fear of damage (or you can just let it through and prevent all damage being dealt to yourself since you have it as well). Just having this with mana open is likely to send them elsewhere and will act as a useful rattlesnake. You can also make their untapped dorks Salamanders and then swing through them without worrying about the troublesome possibility of them blocking and stopping you.

Standardize will make every dork the creature type of your choice, from yours to your foes. It's better at multiplayer as you can en-Salamander multiple blockers and swing in multiple directions. It's also useful protection from a Salamander targeting a permanent of yours, such as Avalanche Riders targeting your land when you control Gor Muldrak. It's great to have here because unlike the other ways of making stuff Salamanders it isn't a permanent that will telegraph itself to your foes.

Amoeboid Changeling

Changing the creature type of a key dork used to be as easy as tapping a cheap common Blue dork, but no longer. You can still run this duo and then tap them to turn an opposing dork into said Salamander. They won't use any mana, which is pretty niftykeencool.

There is a barely played uncommon dork from wayback in Onslaught that can be used as a backup Unnatural Selection. It costs twice as much mana per activation, but Mistform Mutant can play the same game giving your foes the key Salamander you need to protect your full suite of permanents. And you.

Elvish Visionary
Wall of Blossoms

I needed a lot of dorks in this build to maximize my Gor. If I only had 18, then protection wouldn't matter much in holding our serve, but I have more than 40 as well as many other permanents. Consider the often played Opt versus something like Elvish Visionary. Both draw cards, but the latter will leave behind a body that's all protected. You won't see cards here like Harmonize or Fact or Fiction. Nope! One exception? Okay! It's Shamanic Revelation. Pretty good in a deck with as high a creature output as ours!

I really am adding in a lot of card drawing dorks for that mad flow. Take a gander at Fblthp, the Lost. He's always an Elvish Visionary, leaving behind a key dork, but if your foe targets him with a spell (I don't have any in the build) then it'll head back to your library for another draw and another go around the bin. Good stuff! And then check out Keruga, the Macrosage. In a build like this one? You'll always get a lot of cards, including your leader. Keruga is very valuable in a permanents-matter build like this one as your trigger doesn't limit itself to dorks.

Hydroid Krasis
Gadwick, the Wizened

I heard you liked that mad card flow... right? Right! Man, Hydroid Krasis had the card flow and game winning symmetry for you. Draw cards. Gain life. Punch with a flample Jellyfish Hydra Beast! And if you liked Hydroid Krasis then Gadwick can also net you a ton of card drawing with his X spell as well as acting as a tap-down-o-meter when you cast your blue stuff.

I also added in blockers. I really wanted to make sure that we could block and stay alive to swing through any defense. Silklash Spider is getting dusted off as it's awesome. It can survive any swing of 6 or fewer, and with Gor and blocking a Salamander, it's reach will let you suck up 7 damage from flyers, tramplers, and loads more. It'll also sweep the sky at will. Check out cards like Fog Bank that also are old school defensive classics that are fine on their own but really sing with "Gor and the Salamanders." Sounds like a band title. I'm going to name my deck that!

Birds of Paradise
Quirion Elves

I also leaned into mana dorks more than normal as a 1-drop Birds of Paradise is a great blocker too with a second-turn Gor Muldrak. We are running four mana dorks to help the team. The only artifact mana rock I'm running is Sol Ring. The rest of my normal mana rock suiter are dorks which is rare for me as they are weaker to removal, but we need those creatures.

I added in some cyclers that are hefty to give us early game card flow when needed. We are also slinging the duet of Krosan Tusker and Shefet Monitor as it'll provide two cards which helps with cards, one of which is a basic land for the mana needs. These are two awesome tools for our Gor needs!

Uro, Titan of Nature's Wrath

What is wrong with you? Over on the EDHREC.com page for Gor Muldrak there is no Uro, Titan of Nature's Wrath. Why run Explore over this bad boy? He gains life and can be Escaped for many future returns. I am not running a bunch of recursion and most anything in your graveyard can be Uro fuel. My recursion is limited to a token Eternal Witness.

Now let's move from creatures to their planeswalkers. They'll get protection from Salamanders as well as their buddies. This deck feels like a Vivien deck, so we are running four Vivians. Vivien, Monsters' Advocate will allow you to drop creatures from the top of your library all day and night, as well as make 3/3 Beasts for the beats and search your library for a dork if needed. That -2 does great work with the static abilities of said Vivien. Check out Vivien, Champion of the Wilds. This version of Vivien will play into a different pro-creature space, and is pretty cool with flashing out your many happy creatures. Her +1 is a nifty way to slip a dork through a Salamander defense and stay untapped for future blocking and the reach is valuable at the blocking as we don't have many flyers in the build (which makes Silklash Spider better). And if you have both out at the same time? Casting dorks from the top of your library with flash? Nasty!

Vivien Reid
Oko, Thief of Crowns

The first Vivien that went into the deck was the premier and probably my default and most played Vivien. Ms. Reid if you are nasty. Her reason for running isn't that +1, although the card flow and high likelihood of getting a land or dork with it is pretty good. But that -3 to answer three key permanents is my main reason for Ms. Reid to appear. I also love Oko, Thief of Crowns here. Making Food is fine to gain life. But that's not why our good Oko is here. Like Vivien it's that middle ability, although in Oko's case it's a problematic +1 rather than a -1. Here you can Elk-ify a key creature or artifact, two key problems at the kitchen table. You then turn targeted problem into a 3/3 dork with no abilities. That's a great way to answer things like Sol Ring, Mind's Eye, Consecrated Sphinx and more. It's best when targeting a foe's Commander as it won't remove it from the battlefield and send it to the Command Zone for future replaying but it won't do anything anymore, so in ways, Oko is better in Commander than it is on some other formats.

Let's look at Nissa, Steward of Elements. This version of Nissa is very underappreciated, but I am very fond of her. Let's look. As you can see, she must cost at least three mana, and I drop her like that constantly. Then you use her +2. I will typically scry on turn four, and then on turn five start using her 0 ability with 5 loyalty (note that planeswalkers have protection from Salamanders, so how are they dealing damage to them in combat?) Any dork or land with a cost cheaper than, or equal to, her loyalty will enter the battlefield. I think that italicized part is the part that's missed by players when evaluating her for decks. Most effects like this draw the card, but Nissa skips that and just drops it onto the battlefield. In this deck my creature count is 41 and my land count is 35. That's 76% of my deck! That's a high chance of really pushing the table in my direction! Can you see why Nissa is here? I hope so.

Now I mentioned above that I added four Vivien cards into the deck, but you only saw three, so what's the other one?

Vivien's Grizzly

It's this bad boy! Between six 'walkers and 41 creatures, we have 47 chances for getting Vivien's Grizzly to trigger. This Bear Spirit is here for two reasons. What are they?

  1. Card Advantage. Netting key permanents that will shift the board in our favor is pretty good and you have a great chance of hitting one and not wasting your mana. This works well if you know your top card, cough Vivien, Monsters' Advocate, cough.
  2. Mana Sink. Like many Simic decks this one has Sol Ring, mana dorks, and cards like Cultivate and Kodama's Reach alongside the cycle into lands or things like Sakura-Tribe Elder. This deck is very mana cognizant, as key combos like Unnatural Selection require mana. Therefore, this Bear also serves as a mana sink.

Let's finish up with lands!

Bonders' Enclave
War Room

This deck wants to draw cards so much that I've even dedicated two land spots to it! And none of the "Everyone Draws" or "Everyone Draws and Discards" or needing too many permanents to be viable. War Room will tap for three mana and the you'll trade two life for a card, which is pretty useable in this build with little in the way of life usage elsewhere. Bonders' Enclave is also pretty easy to use given the big number of dorks in the deck that qualify. Far fewer hoops and better math on these two in my Gor deck.

Alchemist's Refuge
Winding Canyons

One of the best ways to make a deck full of permanents work is to only cast them when needed to with flash. It's hard to give up a whole non-land slot to that ability since I need my dorks, but I could find two lands that will help. The Refuge will let you cast things like artifacts, enchantments and planeswalkers in addition to creatures. Both are very useful here!

I had already talked about my creature density above, so I pulled a basic land for Growing Rites of Itlimoc. It digs four deep on arrival and nets you a creature, which is pretty likely in four cards. Then you can easily flip it as long as you have at least four creatures, which is pretty likely with their protection and the quantity of them in the build and you've got a nasty transformed land that'll push your mana. It's actually better than Gaea's Cradle because when someone invariably sweeps the board, you can still tap for mana.

Now...want to see my deck? Sure thing!

Gor and the Salamanders | Commander | Abe Sargent

There you go! What did you think of my build? Anything in here inspire you or that I missed? Just let me know!

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