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Throw the Book At Them!


Hit the books? More like let the books hit you, Ron Weasley!

Codie?! Code Red at Hufflepuff more like! Throw the book at them!

I don't know, I never read Harry Potter.


Here's a Commander deck.

Codie, Vociferous Codex | Commander | Danny West

A lot of players are brewing with the idea they can cheat the Steel Golem right out of Codie; allowing them to make mana, do a little hoop jumping, then cast all the permanents they want.

Codie, Vociferous Codex

Dishonest, I say!

What happened to a good honest card subversion? This country, I tell ya.

I had a much more literal reading (snicker) of Codie; when the book says not to use permanents, I follow the recipe, for crying out loud!

That's right! They can add all the card types they want to Magic. I'm going to go the other way. While the commander of this deck does represent two card types unto itself, you'll only find three other card types in total in the stack of 99: instants, sorceries, and lands.

So, what's the gimmick? How do you win without planeswalkers, creatures, and other common-sense inclusions in Magic decks?

Let's go through the different support that Codie will use as bookmarks on the road victory.


Rampant Growth
Growth Spiral

The deck's mana is messy, but with plenty of Green available and a big percentage of the deck's opening plays being either land tutoring or minor card draw, you shouldn't have any trouble getting enough mana together. I'm notoriously annoyed by excess tutoring in Commander games (well, Magic games), but concessions must be made in the name of having something functional. I've made the only tu-toring in this deck either fetchlands that fix colors (hardly tutoring at all methinks) or a Green spell that allows you develop real estate.

And yes, Conflux counts as a Green card. Book em, Dan-o!

Cascade Trigger!

Codie the Cascading Romance Novel doesn't cascade in the technical sense, but your opponent won't know the difference as you're flipping ridiculousness off the top of your library every turn. In accordance with the "no permanent" paradigm, The Little Leaflet that Could isn't going to get protection from Lightning Greaves or other such insurance policies. Face it: the book will get burned sometimes.

But in accordance with that, the rest of this deck spits out the most absurd and obnoxious effects you could ever want to cast for free. If Codie can keep off the shelf and stay open on the table, your deck will basically start throwing spells all over the place in short order.

Take a Wrath Bath

Austere Command
Merciless Eviction
Blasphemous Act

Because you don't have much interest in hand-to-hand creature combat, it'll be in your best interest to keep the battlefield as clear as possible. Keep in mind when you cast these things with Codie out that, unlike the real OG cascade ability, you don't have to cast the exiled instant or sorcery immediately; you have the entire rest of your turn to sequence things in a way that won't force you to give up value to game timing.

Broken Tokens

Since we actually need to win the game in a way that doesn't involve an unchecked attacking book for twenty or more turns, some of our instants and sorceries will generate monsters so we can conclude our bloody story.

Storm Herd
Serpentine Curve

There are a few common Strixhaven cards in the list, and that's no accident. An overpriced but repeatable token maker that doesn't upset the dynamics of the Big Book of Beatings is perfect. And speaking of token makers...

It's a Miracle if You Remember Your Miracle Trigger

Entreat the Angels

Don't forget you have miracles!

Temporal Mastery

Avacyn Restored's marquee mechanic will serve you well in a deck like this, but it's important to note that X spells aren't the bestest of friends with Book Learnin' and Page Turnin' and other cascading ilk; furthermore, spells that have more than one of the same mana symbol in their cost have to be accounted for in your Codie production. The card gives you the mighty wubrg configuration, but it does not give you five of whatever colors you want. Call this "The Crystal Quarry Rule," shall we?

Crystal Quarry

Oh right, lands.

There are a lot of different lands.

Stick the Landing

There's too much customization in a five-color Commander mana base to go into everything. Here are a few details of this configuration:

Calciform Pools

Due to the storage facility potential here in conjunction with both fixing and making for large Entreat the Angels totals eventually, I thought this was a good fit. I wouldn't want to play more of these storage doodads, but you never know when a game goes long and you can just kill someone by accumulating mana interest until the right time.

Minamo, School at Water's Edge

This makes the book go crazy. Watch it flop about the room, to and fro.

Nurturing Peatland
Evolving Wilds
Flooded Strand

I decided that with the help of a few retrace cards to recycle spells, it might be useful to find a way to mess with my lands being in the graveyard. That's when I realized this cool trick:

Treasure Cruise

A single mana paid, an eight-mana-value "cascade" option, and then at least three cards. Yowza!

When you're sorting out your delve payments, be careful around cards like Splendid Reclamation and Past in Flames.

Past in Flames
Splendid Reclamation

Customization: An Epilogue

What other options are out there for those who want to go seriously...by the book.

Call the Skybreaker

For starters my tokens may not be big enough to be consequential often enough in big battlefield combat. Call the Skybreaker is a cool budget card that will give bigger Codie "cascadings" and give you a bigger body. Warning: it brings friends to the party every time.

Empty the Warrens
Brain Freeze

The aforementioned Past in Flames will do much better work with some of its Storm sister spells. I'm trying new things to explore the concept, but if your goal is to smash an opponent instead of writing a Commander article for CoolStuffInc, you may just want to sleeve up Tendrils of Agony and end games faster. Brain Freeze is still a nutty baby bunny, so by all means, get to stormin'.

Overgrown Tomb

I didn't go all out on the lands, but of course duals can apply if you have them. I wouldn't think Codie would be the place to pimp out your lands to the maximum, but I'm not here to judge; Spike it up, brother.

Book Ends

Five-color commanders are unwelcome sometimes. When a deck feels like it just gets to "do everything" without having to solve some problems in the process, it really feels like we're missing a bit of the point. I'm pleased to mess around with a unique five-color commander that requires you to be a deck-builder to get anything done. What's everyone else doing with Codie? Allow me to take pages out of your books, friends.


The Rascal

The Indestructible Danny West

Commander HQ: Decklists and Strategy for Strixhaven's Legendary Creatures!

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