cEDH 101: Wincons and Finishers

Welcome back to cEDH 101! In today’s article, I will give a brief overview of the majority of commonly seen combos and finishers that competitive EDH decks employ. In this, I will specify two different words that often get lumped into the same word, but are quite different. These words are “wincons” and “finishers.”

In this article series, I will use the term wincon to refer to the exact card used to produce the direct effect to win the game. This could be anything from a card like Felidar Sovereign (which has the exact phrase “win the game” on it) to something like a Craterhoof Behemoth, which directly gives a power boost enough for you to win the game in combat against multiple opponents.

Contrast this to the word finisher, which I will use to refer to cards, and combinations of cards, that enable and facilitate the use of wincons. Look to decks like Legacy Storm (The Epic Storm to be precise) which uses cards like Past in Flames to facilitate the wincon of Tendrils of Agony. Past in Flames doesn’t directly win the game, but the effect of the card allows you to win the game with the direct wincon of Tendrils of Agony.

So keeping this terminology in mind, first I’m going to explore (in no particular order) the variety of finishers that cEDH decks use.

Finishers

Unbounded Mana

The Chain Veil + Teferi, Temporal Archmage (as your Commander) + Mana Sources

This combo uses Teferi’s -1, along with The Chain Veil and 5 mana (including two Blue mana) across three permanents to create unbounded mana of whatever type the permanents can produce. This is functional due to the ruling that The Chain Veil’s ability applies to future instances of planeswalkers, so if you activate it three times with the first Teferi, the next time you recast him, you can activate him four times before you use The Chain Veil for a fourth time. As you step through this process, make sure that your very last activation you have access to with bring Teferi from 1 to 0 Loyalty, allowing him to be sent to the Command Zone to start this process over.

Rings of Brighthearth + Basalt Monolith

Basalt Monolith taps for three colorless mana. When you go to use the untap ability, you need to invest another two generic mana from external sources, allowing you to copy the untap ability. Tap Basalt Monolith for mana with the second untap ability on the stack, with the result of this sequence being a tapped Basalt Monolith and six mana in your pool. Since the untap ability plus the copying effect of Rings of Brighthearth costs you five mana, you can produce unbounded colorless mana.

Power Artifact + Basalt Monolith/Grim Monolith

Enchant one of the Monoliths with Power Artifact. This will reduce the untap ability on them to less than the mana produced by the tap ability, allowing you to tap, float a mana or two while untapping them, and netting mana each time.

Isochron Scepter + Dramatic Reversal + Nonland Mana Sources

With this combo, you choose to Imprint Dramatic Reversal onto Isochron Scepter. As long as you have 3 or more mana from nonland mana sources, you can activate the Isochron Scepter, floating the excess mana, and untapping all of them, including the Isochron Scepter. Repeat this process to net as much mana as you want, of all types you can produce this way.

Isochron Scepter + Any Imprinted Spell + Paradox Engine + Nonland Mana Sources

This is basically the same as the one I just mentioned, except instead of Dramatic Reversal, you use any spell (hopefully a spell that doubles as a wincon) to trigger Paradox Engine to untap the nonland mana sources (which still need to produce at least three mana) and Isochron Scepter to net the unbounded mana.

Paradox Engine + Nonland Mana Sources + Unbounded Casts

Through various methods, the most common of which are present in Paradox Arcum, you can produce unbounded mana if you have Paradox Engine out and unbounded cast triggers. Commonly, this will utilize either a creature that can return itself to your hand, like Palinchron, or two creatures that can do this in some way, like Scrap Trawler and Myr Retriever in Arcum Daggson decks. With those last two, you sacrifice one to Arcum’s ability, and use it to recur the second. Casting the second trigger’s Paradox Engine to untap Arcum, and the loop continues.

Auriok Salvagers + Lion’s Eye Diamond

With Auriok Salvagers in play, activate Lion’s Eye Diamond for White mana. Using two of that mana, activate Auriok Salvagers to return Lion’s Eye Diamond to your hand, netting one White mana. Repeat this process for unbounded White mana. Once you have that, you can filter the White mana into mana of other colors by the same process, though you no longer net mana from each iteration this way.

Worldgorger Dragon + Reanimation Enchantment + Painless Lands

Use one of several reanimation enchantments (such as Animate Dead) to bring back the Worldgorger Dragon. It will enter the battlefield and exile all other permanents, including the lands you intend to use to make unbounded mana, and the reanimation enchantment. Once the reanimation enchantment is gone, the Worldgorger Dragon will have to be sacrificed, returning those other permanents, which will be untapped. With the reanimation enchantment’s trigger on the stack, float mana from your newly untapped lands, and repeat the process. To break this loop, you need to have a way to destroy either the Dragon or the Enchantment at Instant speed, or have another creature in your graveyard to reanimate. Also of note, the lands you use should be able to enter the battlefield untapped (as Shock lands would cost 2 life per mana they make you this way) and make the mana without costing life (as City of Brass would cost 1 life per mana it makes this way).

Food Chain + Cast From Exile Creature

Using Food Chain and one of either Misthollow Griffin or Eternal Scourge, you can produce unbounded mana by exiling the creature to Food Chain and recasting it from exile. Mana produced this way can only be used to cast creature spells, please remember that. This combo also functions by using Prossh, Skyraider of Kher in the Command Zone as a combo piece. If you cast Prossh, he produces increasingly more Kobolds as a cast trigger, allowing you to continue to exile one more Kobold upon each iteration of the loop to net unbounded mana and unbounded etb trigger and unbounded Kobolds.

High Tide + Palinchron + Islands

With an active High Tide, each Island taps to make two mana. Palinchron allows you untap up to 7 lands for the cost of 7 mana. If you factor in that it costs a total of 11 mana to cast and bounce it back to your hand, you need 7 lands that produce 12 mana between them to go infinite. With a single High Tide active, this means a minimum of 6 Islands and another mana source, ideally none of which cost you life to produce mana. Palinchron is also able to be copied with Phantasmal Image, which allows you to decrease the number of lands necessary to go off.

Necrotic Ooze

Necrotic Ooze is often used in conjunction with other finishers that mill your deck, but doesn’t have to be. This creature can be used with pairs of cards like Devoted Druid and either Morselhoarder or Channeler Initiate to produce unbounded mana. Devoted Druid provides a way to untap the Necrotic Ooze, and the other two remove -1/-1 counters and produce mana, though you’ll need to give the Ooze haste (oftentimes with a card like Blighted Bat) to make mana with Channeler Initiate’s ability.

Gitrog Monster Combos

These are far more complex than a 101 article can sufficiently cover, so please refer to the Gitrog Monster Primer’s Infinite Mana segment of The Combo section, by Leptys. Interactions occuring with The Gitrog Monster rarely, if ever, will come up within another cEDH deck, so these are less important to familiarize yourself with if you’re just getting into the format. 

 

Unbounded Draw Effects

The Chain Veil + Teferi, Temporal Archmage

Presuming you have given yourselves unbounded mana at this point, you can continue to stack planeswalker activations with The Chain Veil, and give yourself more +1 activations than you need in order to ‘draw’ your deck. This effect doesn’t use the word draw, so it circumvents cards like Notion Thief, and doesn’t enable a win with Laboratory Maniac, but it does get you the cards, which is usually what you’re looking for.

Paradox Engine + Sensei’s Divining Top + Voltaic Key + Nonland Mana Sources

Paradox Engine pops up a lot, doesn’t it? In this combo, Sensei’s Divining Top and Voltaic Key combine to draw you a card, in addition to the Sensei’s Divining Top again. As long as you can produce two mana between Nonland Mana Sources, you can recast the Top to untap your mana sources and your Voltaic Key to repeat this process, netting a card draw each time (and potentially as much mana as you have multiples of cards in your deck).

Isochron Scepter + Dramatic Reversal + Sensei’s Divining Top + Nonland Mana Sources

First, you get your Dramatic Reversal nice and Imprinted. Then you activate Top to draw a card, hold priority, and activate Isochron Scepter. This will untap your nonland permanents, including Top. With the Top draw ability on the stack, repeat this process. Keep stacking Top draws for as many cards as you want to draw. If you repeat this one more time than the amount of cards currently in your deck, you will draw them all, along with the Top, giving you an empty deck and all those cards in hand.

Gitrog Monster Combos

These are far more complex than a 101 article can sufficiently cover, so please refer to the Gitrog Monster Primer’s Drawing Your Deck Pt. 1 and 2 segments of The Combo section, by Leptys.

Ad Nauseam + Angel’s Grace/Phyrexian Unlife

While not draw triggers, this does put your entire deck into your hand. As Ad Nauseam specifically references loss of life, Angel’s Grace/Phyrexian Unlife allow you to go down massively negative as you continue to flip cards off your deck and lose life and put them into your hand. Remember, you cannot pay life for costs that you don’t have, so this doesn’t work for Necropotence, and you can’t alternate cast a Force of Will afterwards either.

Command Zone Draw Outlets

Currently, Thrasios, Triton Hero is the most common of these, but there are also options like The Locust God, Niv-Mizzet, Dracogenius, and sort of Tasigur, the Golden Fang. That last one technically puts your deck into your graveyard, but then it returns all nonland cards from your graveyard to your hand if you keep going, which is nearly unbounded draw. It also allows you to cast a spell, and recur it in a similar fashion to the Recursion Loops I’ll mention farther down. These all require unbounded mana to be able to activate their abilities an unbounded amount of times.

Staff of Domination

With unbounded mana, just draw your deck with this. It’s quite straightforward, which is a nice change.

Semi-Unbounded Tutors

Razaketh, the Foulblooded with 4 Life, X Lands, 1 Creature, 1 Green Mana, and 1 Land Drop

Activate Razaketh with the 1 Creature, tutoring Life // Death. Cast Life using the Green mana, opening up X activations of Razaketh. Use one of these to find Gaea’s Cradle, netting at least X Green mana to complement your X-1 remaining tutors. From here, you should be able to piece together a wincon.

Razaketh, the Foulblooded with 13 Life and 2 Creatures

Activate Razaketh with one of the Creatures for Lion’s Eye Diamond. Cast it, and activate it for three Green mana. Activate Razaketh a second time for Eternal Witness. Cast it using the mana from the Diamond. Use the trigger from Eternal Witness to get back Lion’s Eye Diamond, and cast it. Make three Black mana with the Diamond and activate Razaketh using Eternal Witness to get a reanimation effect that costs two or less Black mana. Cast it to reanimate the Eternal Witness, recurring the Lion’s Eye Diamond with her trigger. Cast and activate the Diamond for White mana, and activate Razaketh using the Eternal Witness to grab Leonin Relic-Warder. Cast the Warder, and activate Razaketh with it for a reanimation enchantment that costs two or less mana, casting that to reanimate the Leonin Relic-Warder. This starts an infinite loop wherein the Relic-Warder triggers, exiling the enchantment reanimating it, causing it to die, and return in a similar fashion to the Worldgorger Dragon combo from above. The key part here is that in addition to unbounded enter the battlefield and death triggers, you can also respond to the Leonin’s enter the battlefield trigger by sacrificing it to Razaketh without disrupting the loop, enabling as many tutors as you have health to spend. From there, you should be able to piece together a wincon.

Other Razaketh Combos

There are many, many other lines you can take with Razaketh, the Foulblooded based on your colors, creatures in play, mana open, land drops, etc. Several more of these, and with a greater degree of explanation on already mentioned lines, are detailed in ShaperSavant’s Razakats primer.

Unbounded Death Triggers

Leonin Relic-Warder + Reanimation Enchantment

Reanimate Leonin Relic-Warder with a reanimation enchantment. Once the Leonin enters the battlefield, use his trigger to exile the enchantment reanimating him. This will cause him to be sacrificed, returning the enchantment to the battlefield, allowing you to reanimate him again. This loop will repeat infinitely, which means you need an Instant speed way of breaking it up to proceed, or a way of winning while it loops.

Karmic Guide + Saffi Eriksdotter + Free Sacrifice Outlet

With these three cards, you can activate Saffi Eriksdotter, targeting Karmic Guide. From here, activate your sacrifice outlet by sacrificing the Karmic Guide, which will return to the battlefield due to Saffi’s trigger. Use the Karmic Guide trigger to reanimate Saffi, and the process will repeat.

Saffi Eriksdotter + Renegade Rallier + Free Sacrifice Outlet

For this combo, use Renegade Rallier (with Revolt triggered in some way) to reanimate Saffi Eriksdotter. Then, activate Saffi targeting Renegade Rallier, and sac the Rallier to your outlet. It will return to the battlefield, and you can use the trigger to reanimate Saffi again.

Recursion Loops

Timetwister Loops

Commonly referred to as Twister Loops, these are something often referenced in the cEDH community but not laid out anywhere specifically. They are based on the idea of using a card, such as Timetwister, to shuffle cards you’ve already used from your deck back in, allowing you to use them again. If you have unbounded mana, unbounded card draw and another card to recur Timetwister, such as Noxious Revival or Regrowth, you can effectively cast every spell in your deck as many times as you need to. This is done by first casting the ‘business’ spell you choose to use to win, then casting Timetwister to shuffle it back into your deck. Next, use your second recursion spell to put the Timetwister back into your hand/deck. Then you can cast the first spell again after redrawing it, and Timetwister both the recursion spell and the business spell back into your deck. This specific style of loop can also be repeated with Memory’s Journey or Krosan Reclamation instead of Timetwister.

Seasons Past Loops

To set up a Seasons Past loop, first you need unbounded mana. Second, you need to have a way to reacquire Seasons Past, such as a to-hand tutor effect (like Demonic Tutor or Dark Petition) or a top of the library tutor effect that can find Seasons Past (like Mystical Tutor) and a draw effect at a different converted mana cost. From here, you can either choose a second tutor (with the eventual goal of getting out every card in your deck) or choose a business spell (with the eventual goal of winning directly with it). In either case, this card needs to be at a distinct converted mana cost from your method of reacquiring Seasons Past. Once you have these cards prepared, get them into your graveyard and cast Seasons Past, returning them and whatever other fun stuff you want (hopefully some protection like Force of Will or Mana Drain) to your hand. Cast your tutor to acquire another tutor or a business spell, or directly cast your business spell to advance towards your victory. Then, reacquire Seasons Past using your accessible method. Recast Seasons Past and repeat this process until you’ve secured victory.

Other Stuff

Ad Nauseam

Powerful enough that it warrants its own entry. With the incredibly low average mana cost that cEDH decks employ, Ad Nauseam will consistently ‘draw’ you around 20 to 25 business spells. That’s usually enough to assemble something to win the game, especially if you can cast it on the end step before you untap or with mana up during your turn.

Necropotence

Similar to Ad Nauseam, this will ‘draw’ you a whole pile of cards, usually upwards of 30. While you don’t get them until your end step, you should be able to sculpt a protected win with 7 of them. Many decks will try and abuse Necropotence’s second ability. This ability says, “whenever you discard a card, exile it from your graveyard,” which is a trigger and not a replacement effect. This allows decks to take advantage of the cards provided without losing them to exile. Shimmer Zur is one such deck, which wins at Instant speed with all the cards gained from Necropotence.

Doomsday

This one card sets up up a variety of wincons. It is one of the most powerful tutor effects in the game, and couples very effectively with cards like Laboratory Maniac, as it empties the majority of your library for you. For an in depth primer on Laboratory Maniac based Doomsday lines, refer to the cEDH Doomsday Primer, by AlwaysSleepy and reversemermaid

Yawgmoth’s Will

I mentioned Past in Flames as a Finisher in Legacy decks, and while that card specifically doesn’t see much play in cEDH, that’s because we have access to the better version. Yawgmoth’s Will, often affectionately nicknamed “YawgWin,” is a card that will consistently singlehandedly set up a win. When cast in the mid to late game with a stocked graveyard, rebuying all of your powerful spells one last time is generally sufficient to set up a win.

Mind’s Desire

One of the most objectively powerful Storm spells ever printed, Mind’s Desire is a very useful card in bridging the space of “almost able to win” to “resources abound and are spilling out of my ears.” When used in conjunction with a card like Kess, Dissident Mage, Mind’s Desire casts so many spells you have to struggle to not win.

Extra Turn Spells

These are generally chained together by decks that employ this finisher. You have decks like Edric who use a horde of small evasive creatures to draw enough cards to hopefully hit an extra turn spell during each of your extra turns. You also have decks like Narset that aim to take unbounded turns with Beacon of Tomorrows and Narset’s combat trigger to infinitely recast the Beacon on each successive turn. Kess has had some success with turns as well, using Final Fortune Imprinted onto Isochron Scepter to take an extra turn, and with the Lose the Game trigger on the stack, end the turn using Sundial of the Infinite. Nexus of Fate is the newest addition, effectively looping itself after sufficieng deck thinning. It appears in some build of 4 Color Rashmi, Derevi Control, and Yennett.

Protean Hulk + Flash/Sac Outlet

With Flash, you can put Protean Hulk into play and trigger it’s death trigger for only two mana. Otherwise, get it into play somehow and sacrifice it with a free sac outlet to get started. These can set up a variety of wincons or other finishers, ranging from the Cephalid Breakfast combo I’m about to cover, to a series of unbounded death trigger loops assembled in the prior section.

Cephalid Illusionist + Nomad’s en-Kor

Using the Nomad’s 0 cost activated ability, we continually trigger our Illusionist, putting our Library into our Graveyard three cards at a time. This will eventually empty the whole thing, allowing us to set up a wincon of some sort.

Hermit Druid + No Basic Lands

This one will put your Library into your Graveyard. Winning from there is fairly straightforward, and will be covered under the wincons that do so.

General Tazri + Food Chain

With unbounded mana (including mana just for creature spells from prior Food Chain combos), you can cast Tazri for a trigger to fetch a wincon ally like Kalastria Healer or Halimar Excavator. Cast this card, then exile Tazri to Food Chain, sending her to the Command Zone. Recast her and repeat this process, netting infinite Rally triggers to win with the aforementioned Ally.

Demonic Consultation/Tainted Pact

These cards are colloquially known as “forbidden tutors” since they are functionally able to get you a specific card from your deck, but at a steep cost. One their own, they are also fully capable of exiling your entire deck. This can be considered a finisher if you are able to use Laboratory Maniac as a wincon once your deck has been emptied. They are also capable of setting up Food Chain to produce unbounded mana by exiling a ‘cast from exile’ creature while finding you an outlet or a protection piece or similar.

Notion Thief + Wheel Effect

This one is somewhat debatable, but if Ad Nauseam gets a spot, this should too. Notion Thief will allow you to take the draws that other players would have had, meaning that a Wheel of Fortune or a Timetwister will draw you 28 (most likely) cards, and a Windfall effect can potentially get you even more still. After you’ve drawn that many cards, and wiped your opponents hands, it’s quite tricky to lose. Though it can happen.

Divergent Transformations

This is a clean one card finisher that was printed in Commander 2016. For the relatively low cost of three generic and a red, you can swap the two creatures you have in play for the very specific two creatures you included in your deck. In Thrasios/Vial Smasher decks, this is often a Notion Thief and a Whirlpool Warrior. In Breya decks, this can be things like a Trinket Mage (for a Lion’s Eye Diamond) and an Auriok Salvagers. In either case, this is a very efficient Instant speed, one card finisher.

Wincons

These will often have multiple ways of being set up, so instead of breaking the wincons up by method of setup, I will just cover each card that directly wins the game, and in the discussion I will mention many of the common ways of enabling it.

Laboratory Maniac

Laboratory Maniac’s ability is a replacement effect that allows you to win the game, instead of losing it, when you attempt to draw a card with no cards left in your library. This is very easily enabled via unbounded draw effects, as well as through cards like Doomsday, which almost empty your Library for you. All you need at that point is a single Draw effect, and you’ve won.

Aetherflux Reservoir

Another common wincon in the current meta, Aetherflux Reservoir allows you to gain life as you cast spells, and use that life to blast your enemies to death. Whether you’re storming off honest to goodness like in other formats, or you’re using Isochron Scepter and Dramatic Reversal to cheat a bit, this will win you the game with a critical mass of cast spells.

Creature Pump

Whether it’s sufficient to win but finite, such as with Craterhoof Behemoth and a pile of creatures in play that can attack, or unbounded, such as with Great Oak Guardian and ways of bouncing it and recasting it, pumping all your creatures big enough to win in one fell swoop is an effective, if not terribly common, wincon.

Kiki-Jiki/Splinter Twin Combo

This is a heap of cards common to Modern, but no stranger to cEDH. If you pair Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker/Splinter Twin with a card such as Pestermite, Village Bell-Ringer, or Zealous Conscripts, you can net unbounded copies of those cards that all have haste. This allows you to move to combat on the turn you combo, and hopefully win. Note that not all cards that can combo with Kiki-Jiki will combo with Splinter Twin. Relevant examples include Felidar Guardian, which is one of the more commonly played combo pieces.

Blood Artist/Zulaport Cutthroat

These cards are your wincons for unbounded death triggers. Have one in play at some point during your death trigger loops and you’ll win. It’s nice.

Kalastria Healer/Halimar Excavator/Hagra Diabolist

With Food Chain mana (or any other unbounded mana, really) you can cast General Tazri, exile her to Food Chain, and repeat to trigger Rally an unbounded amount. With any of these in play (which Tazri tutors for on entering the Battlefield), you will eventually win.

Lethal Planeswalker Abilities

Provided you’ve stacked unbounded Planeswalker activations using The Chain Veil, and of a whole pile of Planeswalker will suffice here. Most commonly seen are Jace, the Mind Sculptor (to exile your opponent’s decks) and Ugin the Spirit Dragon (to hit them in the face for 3 damage over and over).

Stroke of Genius

Doesn’t have to be exactly Stroke of Genius, but any Draw X spell that can target an opponent. Once you’ve built up unbounded mana, you can cause your opponents to deck themselves by making them draw more cards than they have in their Library. Stroke can be recycled to cast again a variety of ways, including Timetwister or Snapcaster Mage, which combined, gives you more than enough casts to kill the table. Blue Sun’s Zenith can do this alone with a handful of draw effects in hand if you don’t have access to cards like Timetwister.

Walking Ballista

With unbounded mana, cast this dude for X = way more than the collective life of the table, and then blast em. You can also fetch out this card along with Mikaeus, the Unhallowed to go infinite with a free sacrifice outlet. You can use the +1/+1 counter from the Undying given by Mikaeus to the Ballista to shoot someone for 1 damage, and then sac it to the sac outlet to repeat the process.

Necrotic Ooze

In addition to being a finisher, he’s also a wincon! With Walking Ballista in your Graveyard, do the same thing to win with the real Ballista. You can also use Phyrexian Devourer to put counters on the Ooze to win with Ballista’s ability in the same fashion, though this method isn’t deterministic, as you need combined converted mana cost left in your deck that’s greater than or equal to the life of the table.

Breya, Etherium Shaper

Breya is an unbounded mana outlet that directly wins. You can cast her, and then activate her sacrificing one of the Thopters and herself to deal damage to an opponent. Recast her to repeat the process until you win.

Recursion Loop Outlets

While you can use cards like one of the above mentioned cards to win after setting up a Recursion Loop, many good deckbuilders find ways of working in wincons with their interaction cards, alleviating the need to dedicate a slot in your deck to a card that does next to nothing except win. Cards like Reality Shift can serve to cause your opponent to deck out, provided they have a creature to begin the Manifest loop on. If they don’t, you can throw a Beast Within at them to destroy all their noncreature permanents first. These two combined form one of the most used outlets to a Recursion Loop, and can function with either of the two loops discussed above. Other ways to win include Ebony Charm to slowly drain the life from your opponents, Tormod’s Crypt to slowly exile their Library after you force them to draw and discard with cards like Windfall, and Praetor’s Grasp to slowly exile your opponent’s business spells, inevitably neutering them.

Swan Song

While this may look like a counterspell, it’s actually one of the most efficient wincons in the format. Swan Song can be a Recursion Loop outlet, allowing you to counter any irrelevant spell you cast to produce a Bird token, slowly amassing you an army of Birds to be able to win with on your next turn. Swan Song can also Imprint under a Copy Artifact (copying Isochron Scepter that already has a Dramatic Reversal Imprinted). With these two, you need to cast a starter spell and have four mana in nonland permanents. From there, activate Isochron Scepter with Swan Song to counter the spell, hold priority, and activate the other one to untap all your nonland permanents. Once you’ve done that, activate to Swan Song the existing Swan Song, netting a Bird token. Then Dramatic Reversal to untap your permanents, and repeat the process, all the while leaving your starter spell on the stack as a target for Swan Song A. Once you’ve got enough Bird tokens, let the starter spell be countered and then do something to attack and stomp your foes to death. Do note that these Bird tokens don’t have haste, so it’ll take another turn cycle, extra turn spell, or some mass Haste effect to let you win.

Angel’s Grace + Windfall

One of the most backup wincons out there. If you draw a bunch of cards off of a Necropotence, Ad Nauseam, or Angel’s Grace boosted Ad Nauseam, you can Windfall them all away, either directly decking your opponents, or drawing into a way to recast the Windfall, definitely decking your opponents. You survive with Angel’s Grace, which is nice.

That’s a lot of stuff. And while it might seem like a daunting amount, that truly is the vast majority of finishers and wincons you should ever expect to see in a cEDH game. There will be many more niche interactions that come up, but those are very specific to given decks, and won’t be seen as often. Most of these, such as Dramatic Reversal and Isochron Scepter, Ad Nauseam, or Food Chain combos, you should expect to see just about every game, and often in multiples. Being able to consistently assemble these is one of the defining factors of the best decks in the format. You’ll notice that many of the best decks employ either a finisher or a wincon from this list in their Command Zone. Having guaranteed access to a combo piece like Prossh, Tazri, or Teferi makes assembling your finisher and win condition far easier. The same is true for guaranteed access to outlets like Thrasios and Tazri, or wincons like Breya. Any consistency boost that can be gained in this format is big.

Hopefully this has been worth the read, and will provide an easy to use resource on commonly seen wincons and finishers in competitive EDH. I will endeavor to keep this updated as noteworthy bans, unbans, and printings occur. Thank you for reading, and I’ll see you next time with cEDH 101: Stax and Interaction!

-Dan

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