Last updated on September 9, 2022

Lord Windgrace - Illustration by Bram Sels

Lord Windgrace | Illustration by Bram Sels

Picking a commander or even colors to be in is usually the hardest part of building your first Commander deck. The variety of options available can make it difficult to choose a lane and stick with it. I understand this plight as much as the next player, and the best way to get past this invisible barrier is to look at the commanders you have available in the colors you’re interested in.

Today I’ll be going over some of the best Jund () commanders out there, how to be successful with them, plus a Jund decklist to give you some inspiration.

Let’s get into it!

Why Go with a Jund Commander?

Prossh, Skyraider of Kher - Illustration by Todd Lockwood

Prossh, Skyraider of Kher | Illustration by Todd Lockwood

Commander is the format with the most room for unique and interesting strategies. As the player you have a near infinite pool of cards, commanders, and win conditions to sort through on your quest to build your deck. This can be overwhelming. The abundance of choice might make it too hard to choose just one, so let me choose for you!

A wise man once said, “when in doubt, Jund ‘em out,” and that’s exactly what we’re going to do today.  

#7. Vaevictis Asmadi, the Dire

Vaevictis Asmadi, the Dire

Starting off our list for the greatest Jund Commanders in 7th place is Vaevictis Asmadi, the Dire. This is the second printing of the original Elder Dragon, this time in Core Set 2019. Despite being 7th on the list, Vaevictis still brings a fun and powerful playstyle.

This dragon is usually built around Primal Surge, a card that demands a deck with almost exclusively permanent spells. This works well with Vaevictis’ attacking ability that lets you sacrifice your and your opponents’ own permanents to flip the top card of your library.

Since you only have permanent cards you nearly always hit with your trigger, getting a land at worst. This also leaves room for politics because you can negotiate with your opponents for what they want to lose, potentially making some favorable exchanges and earning some favors.

Before I get into the combos with Primal Surge that you should consider playing, you need to note that resolving this spell with near-zero misses in your deck usually just results in a table scoop. Having 10 more creatures put onto the battlefield alongside powerful artifacts and enchantments is GG to everything but Cyclonic Rift.

That being said, Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle, Rhythm of the Wild, Warstorm Surge, and any cards like them result in scoops at any casual table. You need actually infinite combos to win at a cEDH table, but you probably shouldn’t be bringing this there anyway.

Enchantments are the secret powerhouse of Vaevictis decks. They play heavily into the Gruul () side of Jund’s colors. Beating down your opponents becomes exponentially easier when you start resolving critical pieces like Elemental Bond and Call of the Wild.

#6. Yurlok of Scorch Thrash

Yurlok of Scorch Thrash

Next up in 6th place is Yurlok of Scorch Thrash. This card is a much more annoying commander to play against than Vaevictis by a long shot. Players love spending their mana (especially all of it), and losing four or five life multiple times starts to matter when you’re simultaneously employing the “Jund ‘em” lifestyle of beating their face in.

If you’re set on a sub-theme other than Jund midrange I’d suggest the X spells style. This is a very unique strategy that revolves around ramping out through the power of green and using your commander’s activated ability to cast large spells ASAP.

You’re going to want to play cards like Klauth’s Will, Electrodominance, Torment of Hailfire (my personal favorite), and Jaya’s Immolating Inferno.

But you don’t want to exclusively rely on your commander so make sure to take advantage of green’s mana ramp since you can. I’d suggest always running a copy each of Cultivate, Rampant Growth, and Farseek. When it comes to mana dorks Ignoble Hierarch is obviously in order, Sakura-Tribe Elder is amazing, and then there are the common ones like Llanowar Elves, Birds of Paradise, and Elves of Deep Shadow.

#5. Karrthus, Tyrant of Jund

Karrthus, Tyrant of Jund

Starting off the top five is Karrthus, Tyrant of Jund. I couldn’t skip over it with Jund literally in the name. Karrthus is an excellent dragon tribal commander and that’s the best way to build around it. Giving haste to all of your dragons makes them much stronger, especially since a lot of dragons have some kind of attack-triggered ability like doing damage or destroying lands.

The most powerful dragons you’re going to want to include in any list with Karrthus are Drakuseth, Maw of Flames, Dragonborn Champion, Terror of the Peaks, Thunderbreak Regent, and Balefire Dragon. These are the main powerhouse creatures of any Karrthus deck that present serious threats on their own.

Enchantments also play an important role in this deck. Cards like Unnatural Growth and Frontier Siege turn your team from great to amazing and can speed up the clocks your opponents are on. Enchantment removal is seriously underrated in Commander at all levels and you won’t see more than one spell that can do it in any given 4-player game. You want to take advantage of this and I think you’re doing yourself a disservice if you don’t, especially in a color like Jund.

My main tip for piloting a Karrthus, Tyrant of Jund list is to not rush out your commander too early. Karrthus costs a lot and trying to find nine mana to play it can be difficult. Play your other high-threat creatures early if you can and bait out board wipes and removal before your commander hits the ground. You’ll feel a lot safer untapping with it and killing somebody.

#4. Tana, the Bloodsower / Tevesh Szat, Doom of Fools

4th place on goes to the partner duo of Tana, the Bloodsower and Tevesh Szat, Doom of Fools. This commander duo plays a lot differently than the previously listed commanders, mostly because their typical deck has the most conventionally cEDH playstyle. These two commanders push you into an aristocrat / sacrifice theme most of the time and I think that’s definitely the best route to go down.

The Tana/Tevesh Szat deck also sports a higher price tag than the others thanks to the nature of the playstyle and cEDH capabilities. Cards like Survival of the Fittest and various tutors help you win via combo but also cost hundreds of dollars for the paper versions.

Your basic strategy is to use Tana, the Bloodsower to generate sac outlets and Tevesh Szat, Doom of Fools to generate card advantage. You also run the Protean Hulk combo lines to win out from your library. These combos usually revolve around grabbing Viscera Seer and other creatures to pop off and one shot the table.

Here are some possible combinations that work with this commander’s colors to look at:

Infinite Ping Combo

This combo uses Melira, Sylvok Outcast to have Lesser Masticore always come back from death and lets you sacrifice it infinitely with Viscera Seer and Disciple of the Vault to ping enemies down.

Reanimation Killer Combo

This combo is a bit trickier than the last one so here’s the breakdown of how it works:

  1. Kill Protean Hulk to get Viscera Seer and Phyrexian Delver.
  2. Reanimate Hulk with Phyrexian Delver, then sacrifice it to Viscera Seer.
  3. Pull out Mikaeus, the Unhallowed and Walking Ballista.
  4. Sacrifice Ballista, it comes back with a +1/+1 counter from Mikaeus, and repeat. This kills everything and everyone and you win!

#3. Prossh, Skyraider of Kher

Prossh, Skyraider of Kher

Prossh, Skyraider of Kher is the OG Jund commander. It wouldn’t be a top Jund commanders list if Prossh wasn’t somewhere on here. This commander easily supports an aristocrat’s theme with its on-cast ability to give you at least six 0/1 Kobolds to sacrifice. It was also designed for Commander so you’ll just get more Kobolds if Prossh doesn’t get to resolve ever, which gives you guaranteed value!

Succeeding with this commander demands you sacrifice your Kobold armies to further the classic Jund ‘em playstyle. While this strategy can go cEDH or high power, I think it’s more fun to lean into the assault-and-battery playstyle and use the aristocrat’s theme as a way to further it into a win condition.

My suggestion for a Prossh deck would be to include cards like Skullclamp, Viscera Seer, and Dictate of Erebos to quickly filter through your deck’s less important cards. Jund lacks blue’s card draw and is balanced with that in mind. Being able to accelerate and filter through your deck will propel you past your opponents and usually result in you running them over.

#2. Lord Windgrace

Lord Windgrace

2nd place goes to Lord Windgrace, which is surprisingly the first lands commander on the list. Land-based decks are very hard to play against since land destruction is one of the rarest mechanics in the game. Dodging spells that target non-land permanents usually gets you around all of them, so having a lands-based strategy puts you at a natural advantage.

This commander naturally generates you card advantage and falls in line with a land-heavy deck, which is exactly what you want in Jund. Some crucial staples that you won’t want to skip regardless of power level are Crucible of Worlds, Crop Rotation, Harrow, and Scute Swarm. These are always good in any lands deck and can be real game winners if they go unchecked.

Windgrace decks also go heavier into the green side of things which is appreciated. Cards like Courser of Kruphix, Oracle of Mul Daya, and Springbloom Druid all fit in nicely.

Most of the creatures in a list like this should have the landfall mechanic, and the more the merrier. Ob Nixilis, the Fallen, Scute Swarm, Tireless Provisioner, and Nesting Dragon all work well. Wayward Swordtooth is also something to look into since you quickly pick up have a lot of lands. You usually hit 10 permanents before turn 5 with this commander and strategy.

#1. Korvold, Fae-Cursed King

Korvold, Fae-Cursed King

Finally we’re at 1st place, which is held firmly by Korvold, Fae-Cursed King. Korvold is a sacrifice and card draw engine in the command zone, which is nice for all levels of power especially cEDH. This bad boy is yet another sacrifice-employing commander but that’s more because Jund supports that archetype so well.

I specifically put Korvold on the top of this list because I see it as a commander that’s good at any power level. It has some place in cEDH but can still be a fair and balanced commander for more casual play.

The same principles mentioned for Tana, the Bloodsower and Tevesh Szat, Doom of Fools apply to this commander. You want to use Korvold’s sac outlet with the synergies in Jund to overwhelm your opponents or even combo off depending on what you’re going for with the deck.

Cards like Syr Konrad, the Grim and Goblin Bombardment are the real powerhouses in a Korvold deck. Anything that gives you more benefits from creatures dying or being sacrificed is your best friend.

Decklist: Korvold in Commander

Korvold, Fae-Cursed King - Illustration by Wisnu Tan

Korvold, Fae-Cursed King | Illustration by Wisnu Tan

As promised, here’s a decklist and mini-primer for a Korvold, Fae-Cursed deck in cEDH. Korvold can go casual or mid-power level, but I think it’s easier for you to work backwards from here than to try to turn a casual deck into a competitive one.

Ramp and Mana Base

You have a full list of mana ramping artifacts, spells, and creatures. You’re holding nothing back in this iteration, including Mana Crypt, Mox Diamond, Dockside Extortionist, and even the basic ones like Birds of Paradise and Bloom Tender. Running a 3-color deck means a lot of your mana ramp can also be fixing, which you should take advantage of.

This deck also features a very premium mana base of Gaea’s Cradle, original dual lands, and Cavern of Souls. Mana bases basically have to be perfect in high-power and cEDH games. Being stuck in one color or not having the ability to cast any of your spells is basically just preemptive defeat, which is unacceptable.

Combo Lines

This list is a competitive one, so naturally your wincons are a list of combos and chains that one shot the table if they aren’t stopped perfectly. Let’s go over the combos and how they work.

Squee, the Immortal gives you infinite creature mana with Food Chain, which lets you get your commander out and draw your deck to find your combos. It also kills everyone if you have Impact Tremors.

Dockside Extortionist combos with Temur Sabertooth to make infinite mana as long as the dockside count is five or more. You can also use the Sabertooth to bounce your own Korvold, Fae-Cursed King so you don’t deck yourself and lose on the spot.

Mayhem Devil

But Mayhem Devil is the main table-killer here. The combos that give infinite mana or draw also give you infinite sacrifice outlets, which means you can use that to trigger the Devil’s ability and kill everything at once.

Commanding Conclusion

Tana, the Bloodsower - Illustration by Magali Villeneuve

Tana, the Bloodsower | Illustration by Magali Villeneuve

There you have it, a complete wrap of the best Jund commanders (so far) plus a nice cEDH deck for the best one there is! I think while Jund is a strong color it just doesn’t have as many commander options that fit its power level compared to colors like Esper or Jeskai. I really hope we get some new commanders that aren’t just aristocrat enablers or beatdown decks.

What did you think of the decklist? Are you going to become a Jund-only player and be hated by your friends? Or will you continue to be a mono-blue player like myself and be grossed out by these strategies? Either way, let me know down in the comments or over on our official Draftsim Discord.

Jund not your preferred color trio? Check these out: Mardu, Sultai, Esper, Abzan, Jeskai, Grixis, Temur, Naya, Bant.

Until next time, stay safe, and stay healthy!

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2 Comments

  • Avatar
    David Parshall January 28, 2022 8:12 am

    Not even a mention of Thantis, the Warweaver?

    • Jake Henderson
      Jake Henderson January 28, 2022 8:43 am

      Hey, David,

      Thanks for reading and your comment, I really appreciate it.

      I chose not to include Thantis on this list for two reasons:

      First is that I don’t see Thantis as a particularly strong commander. While forced combat is a unique strategy, it is pretty straightforward and doesn’t necessitate the same kind of detail a re-animator combo deck might.

      Second is that Thantis is a precon commander from 2018. I don’t hold anything against the precon commanders, some are incredible. However, I think this factors in to seriously inflate the number of decks online, and make Thantis seem more popular than he really is.

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