How to Create Kaladesh Combos

Posted in How to Build on October 4, 2016

By Meghan Wolff

Meghan is one half of the Good Luck High Five podcast and an adjunct professor at Tolarian Community College. She loves Limited, likes Modern, and dips her toes into each Standard season. She's decidedly blue and is the #1 hater of Siege Rhino in the Multiverse.

There's a lot of joy that comes with the release of a new set. The joy of marveling over new art, getting acquainted with new characters, learning new mechanics, and, of course, the joy of discovering the wild and crazy things these new cards can do in conjunction with each other. From gaining infinite life to dealing infinite damage to having the best of both those worlds, new Kaladesh cards have opened a suite of fun new combos.

Want to get inventive? Have a combo in mind that will blow your friends away? Kaladesh is now available at Target, Walmart, and local stores near you for all of your creative needs.

Find a Store Near You

Durable Handicraft is an uncommon enchantment from Kaladesh that combines well with creatures with persist. When you put a +1/+1 counter on a creature with a -1/-1 counter on it, both counters disappear, leaving your creature ready to live and die and live again, again.

Played with a creature like Glen Elendra Archmage, this pairing of persist and Durable Handicraft results in a virtually infinite number of Negates. Great value like this isn't the only upside of the interaction between the Kaladesh enchantment and persist.

All we need to build a game-winning value engine is a way to sacrifice our creatures with persist, ideally in a way that generates mana. Ashnod's Altar fits the bill, allowing us to sacrifice our persistent creature for two mana, one of which can be used to pay to put a +1/+1 counter on it with Durable Handicraft while the other is left floating.

If we sacrifice Kitchen Finks to Ashnod's Altar, we can gain infinite life and generate infinite colorless mana. If we sacrifice Murderous Redcap, we can deal infinite damage to our opponents.


If the above options are a little too straightforward for your taste, or you'd like to throw another new Kaladesh card into the mix, you can use River Kelpie in place of the Finks or the Redcap to draw your entire deck. With a Laboratory Maniac in play, you'll win the game on the spot. With Fateful Showdown, you can change those cards in hand into direct damage to your opponent's face.

If doming your opponents for lethal sounds like the perfect end to a game of Commander, another new card from Kaladesh can get the job done with just a little prep work. Sydri, Galvanic Genius is eager to get her hands on Aetherflux Reservoir, as her second ability is key to pulling your life total up above 50 so you're able to activate the Reservoir. It's Sydri's first ability, however, that will help you combo-kill all your opponents in a single turn.

As soon as you're above 50 life—anywhere above 50—Sydri can animate Aetherflux Reservoir and then give it lifelink. Attacking with your new 4/4 would be too droll, so instead you can pay 50 life to deal 50 damage to an opponent—and, thanks to lifelink, you'll gain that 50 life right back, meaning you're able to finish off the entire table.


But perhaps winning via damage isn't quite your style, and you'd rather mill your opponents out of the game. In that case, Kaladesh offers a new combo in which you can both cast giant creatures and never deign to attack your opponents with them.

Metalwork Colossus is one of several metal monsters constructed by the ingenious inventors on Kaladesh. It already works well in a deck loaded with artifacts. With Altar of Dementia in play, it becomes a flexible way to help win the game. You can either sacrifice the Colossus to mill yourself and find more copies to return to your hand and cast, or you can sacrifice the Colossus to mill your opponent before returning it to your hand and repeating until they have no more cards in their library.

And fine, if you can't find an Altar of Dementia or someone was savvy enough to destroy it, you can always just attack your opponents with a 10/10 or two.

Metalwork Colossus   Metalwork Colossus
Well, I guess I could attack...

If you're looking for combos you might crack in the most recent or the current set, there are a few already out there and more to discover every day! A pair of Wispweaver Angels and a Pious Evangel will gain you infinite life, while a Whirler Virtuoso, a Panharmonicon, and a pair of Decoction Modules will net you infinite Thopters and infinite energy.

These are just a handful of the combos to be found across various formats with Kaladesh, and the best way to find the yet-undiscovered ones is to sit down with a set of friends, a set of cards, and a pen and paper handy, because you're going to have a lot of ideas. Happy inventing!

Want to get inventive? Have a combo in mind that will blow your friends away? Kaladesh is now available at Target, Walmart, and local stores near you for all of your creative needs.

Find a Store Near You

Latest How to Build Articles


January 27, 2020

Gavin Verhey's No Longer Secret (Lair) Year of the Rat Commander Deck by, Gavin Verhey

Gavin Verhey got his hands on Secret Lair's Year of the Rat drop and immediately began plotting on how to infest his Commander games with the cute vermin. And now a look at @GavinVerhey...

Learn More


August 23, 2019

Personalizing Commander 2019: Primal Genesis by, Cassie LaBelle

As a fan of Magic's story and flavor, there are few products I look forward to more than the yearly Commander decks. Unlike normal sets, which highlight a single Plane and time, the Comma...

Learn More



How to Build Archive

Consult the archives for more articles!

See All