Hello! Welcome to my set review of Commander Masters commander preconstructed decks!
I’ll be going through each of the Commander decks and talking about the new cards chiefly while highlighting worthwhile reprints.
Finally, we’ve got the Sliver Swarm deck, a five colour Slivers deck. The worthwhile reprints aren’t all Slivers, but there will be a few. A notable omission though for some reason is Sliver Hive! Why wouldn’t they print Sliver Hive in the Sliver deck? It was a few bucks! For a $100+ precon deck! Now it’s shot up to $50. Good luck!
Joining the ranks of Sliver Hivelord, Sliver Legion, Sliver Overlord, Sliver Queen, and The First Sliver as the sixth legendary five colour Sliver, Sliver Gravemother makes use of two things I absolutely love to see on a card.
Encore is a mechanic I think is way underrated. Araumi of the Dead Tide is a near perfect commander in my opinion and I think more people should check her out. Giving all your Slivers encore from the graveyard is a fantastic way to get your value. The legend rule note applying to slivers really only matters with stuff like Sliver Legion and The First Sliver, I guess? But what if you play Sliver Gravemother in an Arcane Adaptation / Ashes of the Fallen encore deck filled with legends? I smell a brew coming!
I think Sliver Gravemother is very cool, but it remains a Sliver commander which means that players will look at it and think “that’s the archenemy”. Slivers are tough to fight with because of their mechanical nature, but they snowball and are very fun to pilot.
When this was spoiled, the fandom was quick to spot the potential Emrakul anagram, but I think that’s highly unlikely. Instead, Rukarumel is a character from Sliver flavour text! Which freaking rule! What a pull! A biologist who’s been documenting Slivers and putting together a codex gets a Sliver typal card and I couldn’t be happier with this choice.
I say she’s a welcome addition, but really only gets to pick one creature type for nontoken creatures. The only tokens affected by this are Sliver tokens. So if you’re looking at Ru as a new five colour Zombie commander, you can make it work. But if you’re hoping to go with a bunch of different Lords and benefiting from their effects on one creature, this is not going to do that. This is not Maskwood Nexus in the command zone per se.
That said, people who are looking at this and going FINALLY, A HOMARID COMMANDER! are 100% correct.
Capricious Sliver is very sweet for decks that love bottling effects (aka impulse draw) but you’ve got to be careful with how many Slivers you swing with. You’re exiling cards from your library so if you swing 40 tokens at someone to kill them, make sure you’ve got enough to stay in the game to fight your other opponents.
Prosper, Tome-Bound remains the exile matters GOAT and Faldorn could make use of this with a small Sliver package, but as for most cards in this deck, Slivers are a parasitic mechanic and they require more Sliver support. As it stands, a 3/3 for four mana that draws you a card that goes away at the end of your turn when it deals combat damage isn’t a rate I’m happy with, so you do need Slivers. I’d sooner play Grenzo, Havoc Raiser.
This is probably the best new card in this precon. I’m all for trading a token for a creature card. Slam this in your Goblin decks, in your Human decks, in your Boros Soldier or Angel decks, hell just go hard with Taurean Mauler and death cascade.
Descendants’ Fury is a standout that typal decks should consider as long as they’re going in for combat.
Three mana for potentially draw six if you’ve got a high enough density or you just Scroll Racked a bunch of creatures of the same type to the top of your library, that’s insane. Being able to try again for another four is sweet too. I think this card is probably going to find a home in Elf decks and this Sliver deck if I had to guess. It’s powerful but it’s also not a creature spell and can whiff which feels pretty bad. Not to mention, you have no say about what to keep on top of your deck in case you reveal a noncreature of that type combo piece.
I love this card. The idea of slapping any keywords onto Slivers is exactly what the type is for, but this one is great. It’s great while Replicate was an Izzet mechanic and it opens up a whole world of possibilities. You’ll want to replicate only the Slivers whose abilities stack like Capricious Sliver mentioned above or Synapse Sliver. I think it was smart to use this ability since making more Hatchery Slivers is just making Grizzly Bears and Replicate doesn’t stack. Excellent use of power and also restraint.
When I saw this art spoiled, I thought we were getting Eternalize on Slivers which is a nightmare, then I realized Sliver Gravemother grants Encore, so it’s close enough.
Afflict is a mechanic that basically tells your opponents that blocking is pointless. It’s a mechanic a ton of people hated and I’m surprised it’s back. Pleasantly surprised, because, you see, I loved this mechanic. The problem with it here is making it so widespread. Essentially what this does is that before damage, your opponent loses 2 life if they block your Slivers and that means there’s a chance if you hit for exactly enough Afflict, they can block all they want, the combat step will just end before damage.
That said, getting to amass Slivers 2 is the smart way to go on a death trigger. One big Sliver versus many little Slivers is always safest. Just make sure there’s no free sacrifice outlet.
Regal Sliver feels like an insane thing to put on a Sliver. Create a Sliver token and if you’re not the monarch, become the monarch, then every subsequent Sliver that ETBs under your control pumps your Sliver board by 1? That sounds insane with mass Sliver token creation or tokens. Imagine an Avenger of Zendikar into Rukarumel making all your creatures Slivers and Regal Sliver? That’s a haste enabler away from being a huge haymaker.
It’s very cool and can slot into any deck looking for the monarch on ETB with a little more oomph.
While Regal Sliver is nuts, Taunting Sliver is a mistake. A must kill card for any creature based deck hoping to do its thing. Goading, as mentioned on EDHRECast multiple times, is way more powerful than anybody gives it credit. Partner with Bothersome Quasit and you’ve got open reign on the table and you’ll always have someone you can attack into. You don’t even need to goad a creature the opponent you just damaged controls. Any opponent! Jeez!
A new Titan! This means and ETB and attack effect. Titan of Littjara should have been a changeling, but instead it makes you commit to a creature type and becomes that meaning upon ETB or attack, you at the very least will loot.
This is going to be in so many Wilhelt, the Rotcleaver decks. Any of the Simic Elf decks of late, Sea Monster tribal decks want this, and of course, any reanimator shell with a pretty common creature type might be able to squeeze the Titan in. Remember Araumi of the Dead Tide? This is going in there for sure. Three ETBs, at minimum even just choosing Araumi’s creature type for each, you get to draw four and discard one. Then the same on attack. This card is sick!
Here are notable reprints!
- Galerider Sliver
- Crystalline Sliver
- Hibernation Sliver
- Manaweft Sliver
- Syphon Sliver
- Bonescythe Sliver
- Shifting Sliver
- Brood Sliver
- Sliver Hivelord
- Synapse Sliver
- Nature’s Lore
- Three Visits
- Harsh Mercy
- Sol Ring
- Herald’s Horn
- Vanquisher’s Banner
That does it for Sliver Swarm and Commander Masters in general! Thank you for joining us on this wild journey! If you want to see more, check out @mikecarrozza on Instagram and Twitter!