Sidisi, Brood Tyrant - Illustration by Karl Kopinski

Sidisi, Brood Tyrant | Illustration by Karl Kopinski

Hey there, fellow Commander enthusiasts! Let’s deep into the dark and treacherous world of Sidisi, Brood Tyrant and a deck built around it. We'll explore its core elements, from its self-milling engine to the explosive token generation that leaves your opponents scrambling for a way out.

Of course, a deck tech review would only be complete by discussing the combos and synergies that elevate the deck's power level. We’ll uncover the hidden gems and devastating combinations that can take your opponents by surprise and cement your reign as the commander of the undead.

Are you deadly intrigued to know what's in it? Let's review it together!

The Deck

Dig Through Time MTG card art by Ryan Yee

Dig Through Time | Illustration by Ryan Yee

Commander (1)

Sidisi, Brood Tyrant

Creatures (30)

Stitcher's Supplier
Jace, Vryn's Prodigy
Snapcaster Mage
Golgari Thug
Vampire Hexmage
Sakura-Tribe Elder
Satyr Wayfinder
Shigeki, Jukai Visionary
Urborg Lhurgoyf
Prized Amalgam
Stinkweed Imp
Shambling Shell
Ramunap Excavator
Eternal Witness
Golgari Brownscale
Greater Mossdog
Sphinx of Lost Truths
Grave-Shell Scarab
Golgari Grave-Troll
Muldrotha, the Gravetide
Sheoldred, Whispering One
Colossal Skyturtle
Hornet Queen
Archetype of Endurance
Jin-Gitaxias, Core Augur

Instants (12)

Pact of Negation
Mystical Tutor
Vampiric Tutor
Crop Rotation
Cyclonic Rift
Abrupt Decay
Mystical Teachings
Force of Will
Overwhelming Remorse
Dig Through Time

Sorceries (14)

Careful Study
Chainer's Edict
Demonic Tutor
Life from the Loam
Sylvan Scrying
Tracker's Instincts
Witness the Future
Buried Alive
Dread Return
Splendid Reclamation
Living Death

Enchantment (1)

Animate Dead

Artifacts (8)

Expedition Map
Sol Ring
Altar of Dementia
Arcane Signet
Mesmeric Orb
Crucible of Worlds
Phyrexian Altar
Conduit of Worlds

Lands (34)

Alchemist's Refuge
Boseiju, Who Endures
Breeding Pool
Cephalid Coliseum
Command Tower
Creeping Tar Pit
Dakmor Salvage
Dark Depths
Drownyard Temple
Field of the Dead
Grim Backwoods
Hissing Quagmire
Lumbering Falls
Misty Rainforest
Nephalia Drownyard
Opulent Palace
Otawara, Soaring City
Overgrown Tomb
Petrified Field
Polluted Delta
Strip Mine
Takenuma, Abandoned Mire
Thespian's Stage
Tropical Island
Underground Sea
Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth
Verdant Catacombs
Watery Grave
Yavimaya, Cradle of Growth

The Commander

Sidisi, Brood Tyrant

Picture yourself delving into the dark arts of graveyard shenanigans and swarming your opponents with an army of relentless undead. That's exactly what Sidisi, Brood Tyrant does. In a deck built around it, the main objective is to exploit its ability to churn out an army of 2/2 zombie tokens because it rewards you by creating a zombie token each time you mill one or more creature cards from your library.

To maximize Sidisi's ability, your deck typically focuses on self-milling. You'll want to pack it with cards that enable you to put cards from the top of your library into your graveyard.

Ramp Spells

This deck curve, in particular, is somewhat cheap thanks to the crazy number of tutors it runs, and with the exception of the top-end cards that’ll likely get milled or discarded, it doesn't need much mana to operate optimally.

Because of this, it only runs just a couple of mana rocks to help ramp out in the early turns of the game in the form of Sol Ring and Arcane Signet.

For the big turns, this deck may require some additional mana. Cards like Splendid Reclamation fit perfectly in the strategy as ways to ramp you further ahead in the game. Those factors and some synergies with others like Life from the Loam or Conduit of Worlds let you constantly be hitting your land drops every turn.

Utility Creatures

These creatures serve different roles in this deck, but most of them involve playing with the graveyard. It’s cards like Snapcaster Mage or Muldrotha, the Gravetide, which lets you cast cards from it.

Other utility creatures have the role of bringing critical cards from the graveyard to your hand, like Eternal Witness or Colossal Skyturtle.


Since you’ll be filling your graveyard rather quickly, it's a smart move to include cards that benefit from having a stocked graveyard. Cards like Wonder can grant all your creatures flying as long as it's in your graveyard, giving your zombie horde some unexpected mobility.

Urborg Lhurgoyf

A handful of creatures can enable some combos, like Gravecrawler. More on that later.


By enablers, I mean creatures that go along with the theme of the deck, so self-mill. Creatures like Stitcher's Supplier or Urborg Lhurgoyf are very welcomed additions in this kind of strategy because they mill your other cards when they hit the battlefield.

But the core of this deck is without a doubt the multiple other creatures that have the dredge ability on them like Golgari Thug or Golgari Grave-Troll. They can mill multiple cards whenever they’re in the graveyard.

Phyrexian Altar

With cards like Phyrexian Altar, you can continuously put them back on the graveyard when needed for more self-mill interaction.


Creatures like Jin-Gitaxias, Core Augur or Archetype of Endurance can change the tide of the game whenever they hit the battlefield and win the game on the spot in some scenarios.

Animate Dead

The plan is to cheat them into play early with reanimation spells like Animate Dead to pressure your opponents very early in the game.


To protect yourself from being killed while you assemble your combo pieces, it's a must to have some sort of protection against your opponent's threats. For this deck, you have access to multiple spells that excel at doing the job.

Overwhelming Remorse

Overwhelming Remorse is a fantastic new addition from most recent sets because it turns into a 1-mana unconditional removal for both creatures and planeswalkers.

Chainer's Edict

Chainer's Edict can be utilized from the graveyard when milled.

Abrupt Decay

Abrupt Decay is an uncounterable answer against some early threats.

Living Death

Living Death can be utilized as a board wipe that benefits you in scenarios when your opponents have a few amounts of creatures in the graveyard.

Cyclonic Rift

Cyclonic Rift is the must-have card on every blue deck.


Another way to protect yourself and your plans overall is countermagic. You could run more counters than this deck currently has, but I don’t want to ruin the core of it. It just runs three in the form of Counterspell, Force of Will, and Pact of Negation can can be tutored or reutilized from the graveyard when required.

Utility Spells

Stinkweed Imp

These are the spells that are often called payoffs, and in this deck, most of them serve to reutilize cards that you may have incidentally milled due to other cards like Stinkweed Imp.

Regrowth can return undesired milled cards from your graveyard to your hand, while others like Conduit of Worlds let you cast permanents from your graveyard directly. Most of the time, it’s good by making your ‘yard a second hand that your opponents can't interact with discard spells.

Sidisi, Brood Tyrant

Besides the self-mill theme, Sidisi, Brood Tyrant tends to incorporate a fair share of reanimation spells.

Cards like Living Death and Animate Dead can help you bring back creatures from your graveyard, allowing you to rebuild your army.


Expedition Map

This deck has tutors for everything, like Expedition Map which can tutor for key lands.

Demonic Tutor

Demonic Tutor can put any card directly into your hand.

Buried Alive

Others like Buried Alive can put key creatures directly into the graveyard. These tutors serve the mere purpose of enabling combo synergies among the deck that aims to put the game in your favor as soon as you resolve them.

The Mana Base

Bazaar of Baghdad

I’ll say this right off the bat. This deck performs way better with a Bazaar of Baghdad, so if you’re already lucky enough to have it or are playing the format on MTGO, I highly recommend adding it to your mana base and replacing any basic land with it.

As for the rest of the lands, the deck run tons of fixing duals like Watery Grave or Tropical Island that make casting your cards on curve an easy job, fetch lands like Verdant Catacombs to search for those duals and some utility lands like Otawara, Soaring City that can be used as pseudo spells or Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth that give all your lands the ability to add black mana.

However, there are some land cards like Dark Depths and Thespian's Stage that are part of the deck just because they make some cute combos together but that doesn't add anything specific synergy to decks strategy. unlike Nephalia Drownyard, which can be used to target yourself to mill some extra cards when needed.

The Strategy

The plan is simple: use your multiple self-mill cards to create an army and abuse the graveyard with the numerous cards that synergy with it.

From there, you can choose two routes: focus on building an army to get board presence or plan for future turns to combo your opponents with strong synergies.

From my point of view, you achieve this by amassing crazy amounts of card advantage cards from your graveyard payoffs. Once the board feels in control, surprise them by giving everything flying with Wonder or by slamming a must-be-answered treat on the field like Jin-Gitaxias, Core Augur on the field when shields are down.

One thing to be on the lookout for is cards that may have been incidentally milled and that you want back either in your deck or in your hand. They’re key to winning the game.

Because of that, aside from the ones I’ve already mentioned, like Eternal Witness, others like Witness the Future or Shigeki, Jukai Visionary are important to accomplish the job of returning cards for you to utilize later. Even if you’ve already milled an essential piece from your deck, chances are that you can use it later once you get your hand on your recursion cards.

Combos and Interactions

There are some cute interactions like milling yourself a bunch to cast a cheap Dig Through Time or by casting a Chainer's Edict for its flashback cost when milled, but since those are somewhat obvious, I’ll cover some of the most “hidden” interactions that this deck may have.

Phyrexian Altar + Gravecrawler: This creates infinite ETB effects or storm count as long as you control another zombie. By itself, this combo doesn't do anything in this deck, but if you decide to pair it with other cards that trigger whenever an ETB effect occurs, it's there for you to exploit. I mention this just because I already have Phyrexian Altar in the deck, so adding a Gravecrawler is little to no effort.

Phyrexian Altar + Living Death + Eternal Witness: In contrast to the previous combo, this one accomplishes something, which is adding an extra colored mana for each iteration as long as you have at least another five creatures on the graveyard.

Dark Depths + Vampire Hexmage/Thespian's Stage: This is an old Legacy combo, so I wanted the ability to bring it to Commander as a different approach to a deck that excels at playing lands from the graveyard. It gives you the ability to create as many depth tokens as you need if somehow your opponents managed to deal with the first.

Shigeki, Jukai Visionary + Regrowth: This creates a seemingly infinite recursion package. You can use Regrowth to return Shigeki, Jukai Visionary from the graveyard to your hand, use the channel ability on the snake to return your Regrowth and other cards to your hand and respite the process.

Budget Options

Some cards on this list are pricier than you may be able to afford, but most of them can be replaced with similar cards that punish your wallet less harshly.

Skull Prophet is an acceptable replacement for some of the other pricier mana rocks like Sol Ring, with the plus that this can also be used to do some self-milling work.

Timeless Witness is a fine replacement for cards like Crucible of Worlds. It may not be as powerful, but it can be used for a similar effect.

If you’re looking for cheaper self-milling options, Old Rutstein and Sultai Ascendancy are great budget additions for this kind of deck.

Grisly Salvage is by no means a tutor, but sometimes when the stars align, it can be even better as it provides the incidental self-mill.

Some removal spells like Abrupt Decay can be pricey, but Putrefy can do a very decent job at replacing it.

In case you need cheaper counterspells, you can't go wrong with Negate.

Along with duals like Haunted Mire and scry lands as Temple of Deceit, bounce lands like Golgari Rot Farm are okay mana base options instead of some of the pricier options that this deck already runs.

Other Builds

Compared to other decks, I’ve been going soft with what this one can accomplish for the whole purpose of making a use case for its commander. Other builds don't rely much on it but rather focus on a different approach to winning games.

Hermit Druid + Thassa's Oracle: If you decide to include these two and not add any basic lands to your deck, you have in your hand an instant win combo as long as you can activate Hermit Druid’s ability to resolve the Merfolk Wizard.

If you add Tyvar, Jubilant Brawler, you can bypass the summoning sickness check.

Hermit Druid + Laboratory Maniac: This is the same concept as using Thassa's Oracle, but you’ll need to draw a card after it has been completed.

Demonic Consultation + Thassa's Oracle: This wins you the game on the spot as long as you have enough mana to cast both cards. The same effect can in theory be used with Tainted Pact instead.

Basalt Monolith + Mesmeric Orb: Mesmeric Orb is already part of your self-mill plan, but if you want to go even further, just include a Basalt Monolith so you can have infinite self-mill enabled.

Gravecrawler + Rooftop Storm + Altar of Dementia: Two of the pieces of this combo are already here, so by just adding the Rooftop Storm to the equation, you can now start milling your opponents out of the game as long as you control another zombie on the field.

Commanding Conclusion

Breeding Pool - art by Jenn Ravenna

Breeding Pool | Illustration by Jenn Ravenna

Without a doubt, a Sidisi Commander deck is a very fun one to have your hands on. You can tweak it to be good but not broken like the one version I’ve just shown or just go wild and throw infinite combos left and right with the other builds.

Which one would you prefer? Let us know in the comments of over on Discord! As always, thank you so much for reading up until here, and if you don't want to miss any more MTG-related content, remember to follow us on social media to stay tuned!

Take care!

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