One of the many ongoing jokes in the Magic community is the card Seance. A card that requires a lot of setup to ever really do anything. With this kind of a barrier for entry, the Commander community always will step up to the challenge. No jank is too jank for us. Often times this will come in the form of a Trostani, Selesnya’s Voice deck (made popular by MTGMuddstah) or a Karador, Ghost Chieftain list that would probably prefer to not have the Seance. Today I offer you a semi budget take on the idea in the Naya colours using last year’s prebuilt Commander Ghired, Conclave Exile, who synergizes quite well with Seance.
A Friendly Seance
The Game Plan
The focus of the deck is to start dumping your creatures from your library into your graveyard in order to bring them back with Seance, God-Pharaoh’s Gift or Feldon of the Third Path. Cheat out the big mana creatures and then make several copies of them through spells that populate or Ghired, Conclave Exile’s attack trigger. Several of the big mana creatures even proceed to make copies of themselves helping you gunk up the board with overpowering creatures. Let’s look at a few of those.
The Big Fat Ones
Not all of these creatures are good (namely Desolation Twin and Impervious Greatwurm) but those are in there to keep the power level of the deck lower. The rest of the cards are effective due to their huge stats (Ulvenwald Hydra) or their ability to fill the board (Avenger of Zendikar). Polyraptor is an unusual card that creates copies of itself upon being damaged which directly synergizes with Ghired but also has the potential to go infinite with Marauding Raptor plus Impact Tremors in this list. If you want more consistency with this combo, add Forerunner of the Empire, Warstorm Surge and Purphoros, God of the Forge to your deck.
The big idea as mentioned before is to just dump everything big into the graveyard and avoid paying the standard mana cost for it, but also to be able to do this repeatedly. Every time you copy a Karmic Guide, that’s another creature from your graveyard straight onto the battlefield expanding your presence. Most of the recursion in the deck also relies heavily on token creation rather than just bringing back a creature in order to support the populate mechanic printed on several cards that we run. If we can’t abuse the token creation, we can also tutor up our Genesis to keep casting our creatures over and over again. While not in this list, Pull from Eternity could do some work in this category.
The number of enablers is generally rather low here to avoid going over the top in power but still a sufficient number to make sure that the deck can still have its explosive draws. Each of these cards allows the deck to discard everything it doesn’t want to cast while churning through the deck to find lands or creatures to dump in the graveyard. Survival of the Fittest is the main reason I’m not labeling this as a reasonable budget deck, but at the same time, it makes the deck so much more interesting to play. The interaction Survival offers to the rest of the deck is just too much fun to pass up.
How Many Fun-ofs Is Too Many?
This deck has a lot of silly cards that probably shouldn’t be a part of the list. Silly cards that create fun play patterns but don’t necessarily help the deck perform or even might work to the detriment of some of our strategies. Storm Herd is a big one in this category. The converted mana cost of it is absurd, it doesn’t give us impactful tokens that we can copy, and isn’t particularly recursive in this list. So why run it? Simply it’s fun and it keeps the power level down. There are dozens of cards that should be in this slot but sometimes the fun of having all your opponents read this card is just too much fun to pass up.
How to Upgrade the Deck from Here
There are a lot of easy paths to upgrading this deck while keeping the plan very much intact. Additional fetch lands like Arid Mesa will drastically increase the power of Life from the Loam. Sneak Attack has less of a downside when you want all these big creatures you're cheating out in your graveyard anyway. Eternal Witness can help the deck be far more resilient against removal while Loaming Shaman can help your deck reset and not just die from running out of cards. This is a reasonably powered down list with the sky as the ceiling. Cut down on the curve, add more tutors and you’ll be laughing at your next Commander game.
The deck is one targeted at having fun but also just creating overwhelming board positions from pretty much nowhere. Not one I’d particularly recommend if graveyard hate is rampant in your meta but definitely one that can still play through that regardless. Just ramp and cast your huge creatures or remove the problematic hate cards, but your early game will likely be neutered heavily. Overall, an absolute blast to play and finally a reason to sleeve up Seance. I hope you enjoyed the article this week and hope you all stay safe while playing Magic!