Hegeing a Kill

Games of commander are not usually won with an attack here or an attack there. Then eventually people’s life totals get so low that they die. Often times games are won in fantastic fashion. Multiple cards synergize together to create a board state that brings everything down at once. This is where card combos come in. Some groups frown on them. In most cases if a combo or two is in an EDH deck, then most players do not mind. Therefore when deck  building puting one or a couple in a build is not a bad thing. In many cases it will increase the power level of your deck. Today we are going to shoot people down with Sharuum, the Hegemon. 

The Core of the Combo 

The core of this combination is an infinite loop. The loop is a two card combination of Sharuum, the Hegemon and Phyrexian Metamorph. The loop starts with Sharuum on the battlefield and then you cast Phyrexian Metamorph. When you cast the metamorph  it enters the battlefield it enters as a copy of an artifact or creature. In this case you will choose Sharuum. Sharuum is a legendary creature. When the Metamorph enters the battlefield as Sharuum you must sacrifice one of your two Sharuums you control. After you sacrifice the Metamorph it goes to the graveyard. Then the copied Sharuum ETB effect goes on the stack targeting the Phyrexian Metamorph.  Even though the Sharuum copy of the Metamorph is not on the battlefield anymore, it still entered the battlefield and thus gets its trigger. The metamorph enters the battlefield its ability goes off and you choose Sharuum, the Hegemon again and repeat the cycle. 

The Payoff

The infinite loop is a process that will allow you to gain value. All you need is a payoff. Grave Pact will force your opponents to sacrifice all their creatures. Aristocrats like Zulaport Cutthroat and Blood Artists will take the the Phyrexian Metamorph death and drain your opponents life to zero. 

The aristocrats are good but they need to be on the battlefield. They are easily removed. So instead of using them we will use an artifact. Fewer cards are slotted for artifact removal. This plays to our advantage. In this case we will use Blasting Station. Blasting station is  free to tap ability that deals one damage to any target. What makes it delicious is when an artifact enters the battlefield you may untap it. This interaction allows the blasting station to untap every time your Phyrexian Metamorph enters the battlefield. 

With an infinite loop you now get infinite untaps of your Blasting Station. The question then boils down to when do you tap your it to make it kill all your opponents. To start the combo any time before the Sharuum, The Hegemon ETB ability resolves after that you tap it after the ETB ability goes on the stack.  When you add Blasting Station in the loop there will be two triggers happening when Sharuum enters the battlefield. You get to choose how to stack the triggers. You choose to stack the Sharuum ETB trigger first and then the untap blasting station. Triggers resolve in the opposite order of how they are stacked so the blasting station untap happens first. 

The Combo In Action

At instant speed you will tap your blasting station and add one point of damage to any target. You will target one of your opponents. For the first run, the damage resolves first. Then Phyrexian Metamorph enters the battlefield triggers the state based sacrifice of one of your legendary two Sharuums and then the Sharuum ETB trigger  and the untap trigger of the Blasting Station goes on the stack. You choose to stack the ETB trigger artifact trigger targeting Sharuum and then Blasting Station’s untap trigger. The The Station untaps first. Then at instant speed before the ETB trigger resolves you add stack The Station’s 1 damage to any target on the stack. After that the damage resolves. FInally the ETB artifact retrieval resolves. This brings your Metamorph back to the table and you choose Sharuum to be the copy of the Metamorph.. 

Another Payoff

This can get a little confusing. Which is why we worked through the infinite loop first and then added in the Blasting Station triggers. Once you understand the one you can add in the other until you get the idea down pat. Then it will be easier to demonstarate the loop in game for the win.

This combo also works the same for a card called Grinding Station. It will mill out your opponents instead. This combo is not quite as strong as the Blasting Station. There are cards that recycle graveyards. Most specifically Kozalek, Butcher of Truth and Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre. these cards will constantly shuffle your opponent’s graveyard into their library and in these scenarios you need an additional card to make mill successful. Such cards are a Scavenging Ooze trigger or Leyline of the Void. You want to keep the number or cards in your combination as few as possible. As you add another piece to any combination the odds of assembling it drop. This is not an episode of your favorite TV show. There are no screen writers determining you will assemble the cards you need. It is strictly a numbers and probability game. It all lies in deck building.   

Conclusion 

Often people will play Sharuum as a commander in order to have access to her at any point in the game and she can not be exiled. This leads to all sorts of mischievousness. IN such decks Sharuum will utilize all the different infinite trigger shenanigans they can cram in a deck. You can do this as well or you can include some of the Sharuum mischievousness to accent your deck for additional value or end the game.  

If you have any questions on this combination or if you would like to discuss anything commander feel free to contact me at commanderclinicmtg@gmail.com and I will be happy to get back to you as quickly as possible. 

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