Magic the Gather has many different combos that can win you the game. In commander, completing one of these combos out of nowhere can put you at a significant advantage. For example infinite mana with Thrasios Triton Hero can allow you to draw your entire deck. From there you can play a Thassa’s Oracle and protect it with counterspells and win the game. Today we will look at creating infinite Mana with The Dramatic Scepter combo.
It starts with Dramatic Reversal
Dramatic Reversal is a blue instant that untaps all nonland permanants you control. It’s simple and in commander it can generate a lot of mana. Mana Rocks often is a major source of excess mana which can fuel explosive turns for decks outside of green. In green there are plenty of mana dorks that will do the same thing. It is very easy to generate more mana than it’s one colorless and a blue casting cost. This can be strong but in commander we want to break the card. It can be easily done.
Breaking Dramatic Reversal
Isochron Scepter is an artifact that was first printed back in Mirrodin. It costs just two mana and it’s a simple card with some versatility. It has imprint which means when you enters the battlefield you exile a two mana instant or less from your hand. Then you may spend two mana and tap it to activate the scepter. With it you put a copy of the imprinted instant on the stack.
This card is very versatile and as commander has increased in speed more and more decks have these cheap instants that can imprint onto the scepter to create value every turn. In this case when you activate the scepter, then it will untap all your nonland permanants. This will include the scepter itself. Then if you have two more mana you may activate it again. The amount of times you can activate the scepter is limited to only the amount of mana you can generate.
Generating Infinite Mana
Generating infinite mana is easy from here as long as you have nonland permanents that generate three mana or more you can tap them for the mana to activate the scepter. Then when Dramatic Reversal resolves and untaps them you can do it again netting you infinite mana. If you have any other tap abilities on the battlefield you can use them too to create value. With this combo it is easy to close out the game..
Stopping the Scepter
Stopping the scepter is difficult. The easiest way is just to counter the scepter when it is cast. While your opponent does not have to reveal the card they are exiling yet they often will tip their hand. A single Dramatic Reversal is far less potent than one on a scepter. Once it hits the battlefield it is a little more difficult to deal with.
Timing is Critical in stopping the combo once the Scepter hits the battlefieldCommander Clinic
You can destroy the artifact but you just can’t destroy it right away If the scepter is untapped the player can activate it over top of your artifact destruction. Resolve the spell and hold priority on the stack to do it again and again for infinite mana. Stifle effects work to prevent the copy of the spell to enter the stack and will stop this combo for the turn. Then with the scepter tapped it can be removed during the next rotation of the table.
You can attack the cards that are generating the extra mana as well. But because they are mana abilities they happen at instant speed. As long as the Scepter is untapped the owner of the scepter can still activate it over your destruction spell just as if you are targeting the scepter itself. It is critical to cast any removal after the scepter is activated and before it resolves.
Summing It All Up
This combination of cards is fairly easy to assemble with tutors. There are several tutors in blue that fetch artifacts or instants. It also has the advantage of counterspell protection. It can fit into many decks because only colorless mana is needed to make it work and blue is only needed in a commanders color identity.
The Isochron Scepter is also very versatile you can place any two mana instant onto it so that even if you do not find your combo pieces in a reasonable time you can still use it to gain value for casting the same spell over and over again. This combo can be stopped but you need to be careful of your timing. An unhindered Dramatic Scepter Combo will almost always win the game.