The wind is blowing, snow is gently falling, and Magic: The Gathering Commander games are heating up. A great way to cool off your opponents is with a Snow-themed Commander deck. While Snow Commanders are pretty rare, they have tons of unique characteristics that help them stand out against many of the stronger Commanders in the game.
Having a Snow Commander does require some knowledge of the supertype. Being a Snow card doesn’t do anything on its own — instead, it functions as a unique characteristic of a card. Snow matters most when a card has a Snow requirement or when a card has a Snow mana symbol.
It is also important to keep in mind that if you see a Snow symbol on a card it means you must produce mana from a Snow permanent. However, it doesn’t matter what color mana you spend. Snow mana is generic by nature, but effects that would reduce a spell or ability by a generic mana do not affect Snow mana.
5/5 Moritte Of The Frost
Moritte is an interesting Commander for players looking for a bit of a challenge. As a Changeling with a clone effect, Moritte can be a themed Commander, slotting into whatever creature type you need. Moritte is also good in a Clone-style deck, with plenty of powerful enter-the-battlefield effects to copy. While these specific creature-themed decks can be fun, Moritte might be better off as a combo Commander.
Since Moritte enters the battlefield with two +1/+1 counters when it copies a creature, there are some wild strategies with creatures that have the persist ability. Being a Simic Commander, the options for creatures with persist are limited, but the real combo comes from your artifacts. With cards like Altar of Dementia, you can mill your opponents out by sacrificing Moritte over and over again, with the two +1/+1 counters canceling out the negative counter put on from persist.
4/5 Svella, Ice Shaper
Svella is a Snow Commander that doesn’t care too much about Snow as a supertype but loves ramp. This Gruul Commander has a built-in ramp ability, creating an Icy Manalith token that can tap to add any color of mana. Dropping Svella on turn three allows you to start creating tokens early, getting you closer to activating Svella’s second ability.
For eight mana you get to look at the top four cards of your library and cast a spell for free. This is the power of the deck, but since you only get to look at four cards you need to make those cards count. While green and red have little in the way of deck manipulation, there are still ways to optimize Svella’s ability. Use cards like Sylvan Library, Scroll Rack, and Sensei's Divining Top to set the top cards of your library any way you like. Add multiple activations of Svella’s ability with artifacts like Illusionist's Bracers and Rings of Brighthearth to dig even deeper and grab more cards.
3/5 Narfi, Betrayer King
The first real Snow-based Commander that cares about your Snow permanents, even if it's just creatures. Narfi gives all your Snow and Zombie creatures +1/+1, making it a pretty straightforward Lord as far as these creatures go. If you want to go all in on either Zombies or Snow creatures you’ll have a fine Commander. But if you want some more Commander shenanigans, Narfi's second ability is the way to go.
For three Snow mana, you can return Narfi from your graveyard to the battlefield. There’s a very specific combo that allows you to accrue tons of value by sacrificing Narfi over and over again. First up, you need two additional cards — the classic Ashnod’s Altar as a sacrifice outlet, and Thermal Flux which can turn a permanent into a Snow permanent. When you do this, it produces snow mana when you sacrifice Narfi to it. However, it will leave you with only two snow mana, and you will need at least one additional snow mana to start the combo.
Most of the combo is assembled now, but there’s still one piece missing — a type of token generator and a way to finish off your opponents. A common choice is Tormod, the Desecrator, or Desecrated Tomb, which create tokens when a creature leaves the battlefield. Every time you run through this combo you generate one extra mana. Once you create infinite mana, you can stop sacrificing the extra Zombie token made this way, netting you infinite tokens. Throw in a card like Blood Artist to start draining life and you’ll be winning in no time.
2/5 Jorn, God Of Winter // Kaldring, The Rimestaff
Jorn is a modal double-faced card, with a green creature on one side and a blue-black artifact on the back — meaning it has all three colors in its identity. Because Jorn has the rather unique ability to untap your Snow permanents when it attacks, many decks tend to move more to a Stax build. Stax decks focus on restricting the actions of your opponents while maximizing your own.
Cards like Winter Orb, Stasis, and Static Orb stop everyone from untapping their permanents. These effects restrict you from untapping your cards as well, but so long as Jorn can attack, you get to untap all your Snow permanents. Fill your board with all sorts of Snow permanents and make sure that your lands are all Snow lands, and you’ll watch your opponents slowly lock themselves out of the game.
1/5 Isu The Abominable
Isu the Abominable is the best and most focused Snow commander and the first Yeti commander, so grab all five other Yeti cards in Magic and start brewing. Regardless of which way you decide to take the deck, filling it with Snow cards is the way to go. Isu lets you look at the top card and then play spells and lands from the top of your library — so long as they’re Snow cards.
Since you’re in Bant colors, there are plenty of ways to manipulate the top card of your library and make sure you have extra land drops to skip through the cards you don’t want. Because Isu can quickly become a threat, you’ll want plenty of ways to protect it from removal.
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