Preorder MTG Ravnica Remastered today!
   Sign In
Create Account

The Mycotyrant in Commander


I've been churning through Golgari and Golgari-adjacent decks a lot lately. I threw together a Smeagol, Helpful Guide deck as a whimsical low powered landfall deck and it's struggled to do much of anything. I recently built Korvold, Gleeful Glutton and Sidisi, Brood Tyrant and was tweaking my Muldrotha, the Gravetide deck after seeing the gloriously degenerate interaction between Displacer Kitten and Diluvian Primordial.

I've also been thinking about taking apart my Grismold, the Dreadsower list, or possibly my new Smeagol deck, because in my first few The Lost Caverns of Ixalan booster packs I was lucky enough to pull this fun guy.

The Mycotyrant

The Mycotyrant is an Elder Fungus with trample and a power and toughness equal to the number of Fungi and Saprolings I control. It has an end step descend trigger. At the beginning of my end step I'll create X 1/1 Black Fungus creature tokens where X is the number of times I descended this turn. Those Black Fungus creature tokens can't block, and they can't help with my descend trigger as they're tokens, not cards.

My first thought was that this was going to be one of those decks that could threaten two or three types of wins. I could attempt to go wide and swing with a ton of Saprolings and Fungus. I could also build my commander up and try to kill someone with combat damage. I might do both if the situation is right, but this commander also works well with certain combos.

If I can loop a card into the graveyard again and again, even if I'm not making extra mana or creating anything in the process, I'll get that many 1/1 Black Fungus tokens on my end step. My tablemates will have a turn cycle to deal with my army, but if they don't find an answer I should be able to swing and kill the table.

Mycophiliacs Anonymous

Magic has a long history and Fungus creature types have been with us for nearly two decades. The first Fungi showed up back in 1994 in Fallen Empires. The five summon cards in that set with a creature type of Fungus established how the Fungus / Saproling relationship would work in the world of Magic: the Gathering. You put spore counters on a Fungus, usually during your upkeep, and you can remove three spore counters to create a Saproling creature token.

Taking three turns to make a 1/1 token creature isn't the kind of rate that is worth playing in today's game, but we have lots of ways to make that work a little faster. Token and counter doublers along with proliferate effects can all work together to make a Fungus deck at least playable in low to mid-power Commander games.

I built today's deck largely from cards I already owned and I don't own much from sets as old as Fallen Empires. I did manage to find plenty of Fungi in amongst my commons and uncommons.

Thallid Shell-Dweller
Sporecrown Thallid

Thallid Shell-Dweller is a classic Thallid Fungus, getting a spore counter on its upkeep and letting me make a Saproling by removing three counters. It's in the list for its low mana cost and as a solid early game blocker. Sporecrown Thallid is a "lord" for Fungus and Saprolings, giving them +1/+1. Mycoloth is a Fungus with devour, letting me sacrifice any number of creatures when it enters the battlefield. For each creature I sacrifice, Mycoloth will get two +1/+1 counters and on my upkeep I'll make a 1/1 Green Saproling for each counter on it.

Saproling Generators

This deck isn't going to be making a lot of Saproling creature tokens by removing spore counters from Fungus creatures. That method was fine for Fallen Empires but we've got better, faster and more dependable ways to create Saprolings these days.

Nemata, Primeval Warden
Verdant Force
Tendershoot Dryad

Nemata, Primeval Warden is a great example of what I want in my Saproling generators. Creatures die in games of Commander and if Nemata is on the battlefield I'll get a Saproling and the dead creature will get exiled. This legendary Treefolk shuts down a lot of graveyard strategies nicely, it makes Saproling tokens, it gives me a Saproling sacrifice outlet and it can help me draw cards. This Fungus would make for a fine commander for a casual Treefolk / Saproling deck but today he's just a strong member of the 99 under The Mycotyrant.

Verdant Force and Tendershoot Dryad give us an interesting example of power creep. The former is an 8-mana 7/7 Elemental who will give me a Saproling creature token on each upkeep. It's great but pretty expensive and I think Wizards of the Coast recognized that when they printed Tendershoot Dryad. It's three mana cheaper, will give me a Saproling on each upkeep, and if I have 10 or more permanents my Saprolings will get a +2/+2 anthem effect. Verdant Force was first printed in Tempest way back in 1997, and Tendershoot Dryad came out 21 years later in 2018's Rivals of Ixalan.

I'm also running Verdant Embrace, an aura that gives enchanted creature +3/+3 and makes a Saproling on each upkeep. Fists of Ironwood, a two-mana aura that gives trample and creates two Saprolings when it enters the battlefield, is also in the list. I'm running both not only for their Saprolings but also for the chance to enchant Dreampod Druid. That 2/2 Human Druid will give me a Saproling on each upkeep if it's enchanted.

My Saproling generation isn't just from my creatures. I'm running all manner of ways to pop those little guys onto the battlefield. Fungal Infection is a one mana removal spell in Black that gives target creature -1/-1 and makes a 1/1 green Saproling. Fungal Plots is an enchantment that will let me pay 2 mana, one of which must be Green, to exile a creature from my graveyard and make a Saproling. It will also let me sacrifice two Saprolings to gain 2 life and draw a card.

Slimefoot and Nim Deathmantle

You might have wondered why I hadn't mentioned Slimefoot, the Stowaway yet. Slimefoot is in today's list and is every bit as capable a leader for a Fungus / Saproling deck. Slimefoot decks are often built around game ending combos, and when I decided to add him to the list I also decided I might as well throw in a few combos.

Slimefoot, the Stowaway
Ashnod's Altar
Parallel Lives

There are a lot of ways to combo off with Slimefoot but the basic concept is that you start with a token doubler and Ashnod's Altar on the field. You pay four mana to make a Saproling, but the token doubler makes an extra one. You then sacrifice them to Ashnod's Altar to make four mana and you do it again. Each time a Saproling you control dies, Slimefoot deals 1 damage to each opponent and you gain 1 life. You can substitute Primal Vigor or Doubling Season for Parallel Lives, though the former will affect everyone so you might end up helping your opponents more than you'd like.

Nim Deathmantle
Yavimaya Sapherd
Deathbloom Thallid

Nim Deathmantle works with Ashnod's Altar and a creature that creates a token when it enters the battlefield or dies to produce an infinite loop of deaths and enter the battlefield triggers. If you don't have Slimefoot on the battlefield, you can still threaten a win with The Mycotyrant. On your end step you'll create X 1/1 Black Fungus creature tokens where X is the number of times a permanent card went into the graveyard.

This loop does put the creature card into the graveyard so you'll be able to make an arbitrarily large Fungus army. They can't block and they can't feed into any of your Saproling sacrifice outlets, but it will still feel pretty good and your tablemates will have to find a way to deal with you before you untap on your next turn.

Fun with Fungus

This deck can win through combo, but I'm also running a few ways to finish a table off even if you never find that elusive Ashnod's Altar. With enough creatures and enough mana, you can use Diabolic Intent or Finale of Devastation to get Craterhoof Behemoth and swing with a lethal number of pumped up Saprolings and Fungi. Not everyone likes Craterhoof as a game ender, but this deck can go wide without going infinite and it feels like a pretty good fit.

This is a first draft and could be moved in all sorts of different directions. If you wanted to tone it down a lot, you could drop out the combo lines and Craterhoof, load in a bunch of old Fungus cards and play some good old fashioned low-power EDH. It would be fun, but you'll feel the extra mana you'll be paying and the extra steps you'll have to take to build up your army. If you like longer games and Spore counters, this might be worth a try.

To tune this deck up, you would want to add in more tutors. We're in Black and if you're looking to play high powered EDH you really do want to be able to tutor up the answers and wincons you need. You might also play a few staples like Opposition Agent, Mirkwood Bats, Heroic Intervention, Toxic Deluge and other excellent cards that can replace some of the high mana cards that I cluttered up today's deck with. I may be running Verdant Force in this list but I'm not about to pretend it's a great card in today's EDH.

I don't think there's an issue with moving up the power scale provided you are playing decks that fit into your playgroup or meta. Even then, I think it's OK to sometimes play a higher-powered list so long as it's not a constant problem. In Commander there can be so much variance in mid and even high-powered play that good decks can have a bunch of bad games and lower powered decks can occasionally pop off and surprise you.

Final Thoughts

I wish I could share game results for this deck, but I don't have anything much to share. I got a game in with it on Tabletop Simulator, but over half of the cards I happened to draw were lands and the others weren't particularly helpful. Variance had her way with me and I had very much of a non-game.

I should admit that my willingness to run janky cards that might be borderline unplayable is something of a double-edged sword. It lets me reduce the number of format staples I run, and it brings the power level of my decks down a bit. That's neither good nor bad - some people like lower powered games and janky decks. I personally struggle with enjoying those suboptimal cards and getting frustrated with janky decks not keeping up at the tables I play at.

You could load in a bunch of aristocrats cards, drop out some of the worse cards and have a pretty standard Golgari sacrifice deck. The Mycotyrant rewards you for sacrificing nontoken permanents and you could build a slow but powerful deck for mid-powered games with that sort of focus.

Whatever direction you take The Mycotyrant, whether it's crusty old Fungus cards from nearly 20 years ago, a highly tuned combo deck loaded up with tutors or something in between, I hope if you build around this card you're able to get it to do what you want. Just be careful to let folks know what power level you're coming in at so your friends don't feel like they got pubstomped.

That's all I've got for today. Thanks for reading and I'll see you next week!

Limited time 30% buy trade in bonus buylist