Tribal Tuesday Ft. Wurms

Hello everyone, and welcome to this week’s Tribal Tuesday!

Last episode we finally had a good reason to return to Standard for Tribal Tuesday, and that was because of Gates! Honestly, Gates feels a bit odd for Tribal Tuesday now as since the article came out, Gate decks are really taking off! We’ve seen them compete at high-level tournaments and take down some top tiered decks, I’ve even made the deck on Magic Arena and done quite well with it myself. But enough of that! This week we heading to the king of multiplayer formats, Commander to look at a wacky tribe I’ve just been waiting to cover, and that, is Wurms!

A quick reminder for anyone new to the series, Tribal Tuesday is all about checking out some of the overlooked tribes in magic history and having some fun brewing in different formats. Now, I hope you’re ready for some Wurms! (possibly the weirdest sentence I’ve ever written)

The Background!

Wurms have a pretty interesting background when it comes to Magic: The Gathering. Their Origin can be traced back to the Elder Dragon War (a big war between Elder Dragons) where the Elder Dragons that were defeated, were striped of their power, limbs, and wings, thereby becoming the Elder Land Wurms.

Elder Land Wurm

Wurms may be aligned with any colour of Magic, but most are wholly or partially green. Over the years Wurms in Magic have become more like giant Worms. They are preternaturally hungry and relentless when pursuing their prey.

The Inspiration!

So, Wurms have been one of the tribes that have been in the back of my mind, almost since the start of writing this series, just never managed to reach the front till now! There’s only so many times I can do Commander/Edh in a row without being wanting something different! When I first started playing Maigc, around the time of Amonkhet, the first deck I made was a black/green sacrifice themed deck (the greatest deck I’ve ever made by the way) and as a late game pay off, I included a copy of Sandwurm Convergence. Whilst I thought this card was amazing at the time, even though I probably only managed to cast it a handful of times, it did start my interest in Wurm tribal all the way back then.

The Decklist!

https://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/08-02-19-wurm-commander/

Creature (28)

  • 1x Argothian Wurm
  • 1x Armada Wurm
  • 1x Autochthon Wurm
  • 1x Bellowing Tanglewurm
  • 1x Carnage Wurm
  • 1x Chorus of the Conclave
  • 1x Deathcoil Wurm
  • 1x Dirtcowl Wurm
  • 1x Duskdale Wurm
  • 1x Elderscale Wurm
  • 1x Elvish Piper
  • 1x Engulfing Slagwurm
  • 1x Eternal Witness
  • 1x Garruk’s Packleader
  • 1x Gravetiller Wurm
  • 1x Grothama, All-Devouring
  • 1x Impervious Greatwurm
  • 1x Novablast Wurm
  • 1x Pelakka Wurm
  • 1x Penumbra Wurm
  • 1x Plated Slagwurm
  • 1x Sakura-Tribe Elder
  • 1x Sifter Wurm
  • 1x Somberwald Sage
  • 1x Verdant Sun’s Avatar
  • 1x Witherscale Wurm
  • 1x Worldspine Wurm
  • 1x Wurmcoil Engine

Instant (6)

  • 1x Advent of the Wurm
  • 1x Beast Within
  • 1x Kindred Summons
  • 1x Momentous Fall
  • 1x Path to Exile
  • 1x Swords to Plowshares

Sorcery (10)

  • 1x Crush of Wurms
  • 1x Cultivate
  • 1x Day of Judgment
  • 1x Explosive Vegetation
  • 1x Genesis Wave
  • 1x Harmonize
  • 1x Rishkar’s Expertise
  • 1x Roar of the Wurm
  • 1x Tooth and Nail
  • 1x Wurmcalling

Enchantment (9)

  • 1x Asceticism
  • 1x Aura Shards
  • 1x Darksteel Mutation
  • 1x Defense of the Heart
  • 1x Descendants’ Path
  • 1x Mirari’s Wake
  • 1x Sandwurm Convergence
  • 1x Triumph of Ferocity
  • 1x Wurmweaver Coil

Artifact (7)

  • 1x Emerald Medallion
  • 1x Lifecrafter’s Bestiary
  • 1x Selesnya Signet
  • 1x Sol Ring
  • 1x Thran Dynamo
  • 1x Urza’s Incubator
  • 1x Vanquisher’s Banner

Land (38)

  • 1x Blossoming Sands
  • 1x Bountiful Promenade
  • 1x Command Tower
  • 1x Desert of the Indomitable
  • 1x Desert of the True
  • 1x Elfhame Palace
  • 16x Forest
  • 1x Gavony Township
  • 1x Graypelt Refuge
  • 1x Krosan Verge
  • 7x Plains
  • 1x Reliquary Tower
  • 1x Selesnya Guildgate
  • 1x Selesnya Sanctuary
  • 1x Sunpetal Grove
  • 1x Temple of Plenty
  • 1x Temple of the False God

The Commander!

Sadly, this is wear we loose a few flavour points. In all of Magic history, there has only been one Legendary Wurm (the greatest crime in Magic), and even that was only made recently. This is of course, Grothama, All-Devouring, and whilst the creature is fairly okay and has some amazing artwork, it’s not quite what we want a Commander to do.

Grothama, All-Devouring

Instead, we had to go with something a little more Godly. As seems to be a common thing with most tribes we cover, a lot of Wurms have pretty high mana costs attached to them, this means making land drops very important. This was probably the deciding facotr as to why I went with Karametra, God of Harvests. Apart from being a big indestructible creature, whenever we play a creature spell, we get to put a forest or plains into play, meaning we’ll almost always be ahead on lands which is where we want to be.

Karametra, God of Harvests

For those sad about Grothama, don’t worry, he’ll still make an appearance in the deck!:)

Artifacts!

Like most Commander lists, the artifacts are almost exclusively ramp and ways to make our chosen tribe cheaper to cast. As always, the might Sol Ring makes an appearance to get off to a fast start as well as a signet is our chosen colours, Selesnya and a Thran Dynamo, all with the intention of getting our big Wurms out earlier. Emerald Medallion is also here, as making green spells cost 1 less can add up to a lot of discounted mana over the course of the game.

Emerald Medallion

On the same wind as the Emerald Medallion, Urza’s Incubator also reduces the cost of our chosen tribe, which would also be Wurms in this deck, by 2. Adding both these cards together means we can get some big creatures out a lot earlier than we otherwise would. This prevents us from not doing much early game and getting picked on, which can be the case with big mana decks.

The other side of our Artifacts is the card draw side. Vanquisher’s Banner is the ultimate tribal card draw spell. It acts as a lord for the chosen tribe, whilst also drawing us a card every time we play a Wurm, and we have a lot of them!

Vanquisher's Banner

Speaking of having a lot of creatures, Lifecrafter’s Bestiary will draw us another card if we happen to have one extra green mana available, which we often do. All of this ensures that we don’t run out of gas if we’re going for a long game.

Enchantments!

The thing I love about Wurms in Magic, they don’t just have a bunch of creatures. They seem to have all sorts of cards that have something to do with Wums to help them along. As previously mentioned, Sandwurm Convergence makes an appearance as it did many moons ago in my first standard deck ever. This is both pressure and defense in one card and I love ramping into this early. There’s also Wurmweaver Coil which buffs our already big creatures, but we can also sacrifice it to make a Wurm, we’ll often do this in response to someone trying to destroy the enchantment.

Wurmweaver Coil

Just like artifacts, we have a variety of enchantments to help in different situations. For defense, we have Asceticism. This card works great in this deck as it stops single target removal, meaning only board wipe effects will be able to hurt the Wurms, and often enough, if the board wipe is damage based and not a wrath affect, Wurms are often too big for it to kill the creature. This plus the regeneration is huge for survival.

Asceticism

Aura Shards is another big hitter as we’re heavily creature based. Each creature drop means we have a way of destroying plenty of artifacts and enchantments. We also have, what I believe to be the best removal in Commander, Darksteel Mutation! Using this on an opponents commander is sure to ruffle some feathers because, unless they have enchantment removal, their commander is a 0/1 for a big portion of the game.

Mirari’s Wake doubles up our mana helping us to cast our big spells, even multiple in one turn whilst also being a lord for creature which is always a bonus. Descendants’ Path is a great source of card advantage. If we have one Wurm in play, if we then reval another Wurm, we can put that one into play without paying it’s mana cost. The main reason I like this, because of the high mana costs of Wurms, we’re often only playing one big spell a turn, and against heavy removal decks, this isn’t going to be good. This allows is to play 2+ creatures on our turn, so the odds of untapping with at least one is much more. Plus cheating out Wurms is hilarious.

Descendants' Path

Sorcery!

Typically of green based Commander decks, a few of our spells are ramp spells. Cultivate and Explosive Vegetation enable us to have early plays whilst increasing our land count for the inevitable Wurm army. Remember when I said there are plenty of Wurm themed cards all over the place? Well Crush of Wurms and Roar of the Wurm are both put Wurms into play that also have flashback, so many Wurms! There’s also Wurmcalling, which has buyback, ensuring we always have stuff to do with our mana.

Crush of Wurms
Wurmcalling

Instants!

Another reason why we chose karametra as our Commander becomes apparent here. White is well known as having some of the best removal in Magic. Path to Exile and Swords to Plowshare answer almost any troublesome creature on the other side of the board. It also enables us to play Advent of the Wurm, or as I like to call it ‘Surprise Wurm’. Essentially a Wurm with flash, it can be used as a great blocker when poeple think they’re swinging into an empty board for a nice blow out.

Advent of the Wurm

The other instants we include help is with card draw or more pressure. Momentous Fall draws us a bunch of cards and a nice chunk of life as our creatures are typically very large! We’ll often do this in response to a board wipe or unfavorable trade. Then we have Kindred Summons. In a nutshell, this card doubles the amount of Wurms that we have in play. Being able to do this at instant speed on an end step, untapping and swinging with a huge board is often the way that we’ll end the game, often being able to take out multiple opponents in one turn.

Momentous Fall
Kindred Summons

Creatures!

The section I’ve been looking forward to the most! I don’t know why, but Wurms seem to have great character with them, for me anyway, so each creature you play feels pretty special, and that’s enough reason to play the tribe as is. Now, as always with these Commander lists, I can’t name every single Wurm we have, so I encourage you to check out the list and look at all the fun Wurms there are.

First we’ll go over some more familiar Wurms you may have seen is other formats. If you’ve played against Tron in modern (I feel for you) you’ll probably have seen Wurmcoil Engine and know how hard it is to get rid of! Deathtouch and lifelink are a pain when put together and once it is removed you get two tokens, people have to put in a lot of removal to get rid of this creature completely. Now for another Wurm in modern, whilst we won’t be gaining a huge 15 life like the nourishing shoal decks, we do play the same Wurm, the Worldspine Wurm. similar to get engine, when it dies it leaves behind three tokens, and quite big ones at that, at a 5/5 stat line. It also has the nice benefit of ensuring we can never get milled out!

Wurmcoil Engine
Worldspine Wurm

Now for some unusual Wurms! Argothian Wurm has to be one of my favourite in the deck, with some early ramp, we can play this guy on turn 3 for a 6/6, that kind of pressure will often get people to come after you but also get you ahead early. Opponents don’t like a turn 3 6/6? They can always sacrifice a land to put it back on top of your library, but who want’s to do that early in the game? Its super weird but super fun!

Argothian Wurm

Dirtcowl Wurm is another Wurm that can run away with the game. Lot’s of decks, including ours, want as many lands out as possible to play more spells. If we have this Wurm in play, by the time we untap with it, in a 4 payer game, it’s already grown into a 6/7, and it’ll only get bigger!

Dirtcowl Wurm

As I mentioned earlier, we just had to include the only legendary Wurm in existence, Grothama, All-Devouring. Whilst it’s text is super weird, its five mana for a 10/8 which is crazy. Not everyone is going to have enough creatures to fight it in one turn. Maybe one day I’ll make a voltron style deck with Grothama leading. We’ve also got the Ravnica buy-a-box promo Impervious Greatwurm. There’s not much to say, it’s a 16/16 with indestructible, it’s not going anywhere if you manage to play it.

Grothama, All-Devouring
Impervious Greatwurm

Have you ever wanted a Wrath effect attached to a Wurm? Well now you can! Novablast Wurm destroys all other creatures when it attacks. If we’re struggling to keep a lot of Wurms on the board, we can focus on this one Wurm and keep him alive with the rest of our mana, kind of taking a voltron style approach as we’ll be wrathing the board every attack step.

Novablast Wurm

We still have a ton more Wurms, the rest of them either bring another Wurm with it, have some sort of keyword like trample or hexproof or exvasion. Wurms seem to have everything covered!

The Wrap up!

If you like big green decks and a tribe that somehow has a lot of character despite just being long noodles, I really think you should look at this list closer. Being able to play so many different types of Wurms with a vast variety of effects, ramp a lot and draw cards is what this deck is all about and I think it would be a blast!

As always, thanks for taking the time to read, anything I missed? And as always, what tribe should we cover next, got any underloved favourites? Let us know!

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