Commander Corner – Niv-mizzet, the Firemind

Magic the Gathering – Welcome to the second installment of Commander Corner. In this article we're going to look at one of my favorite Commanders: Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind. This nifty commander deals damage to an opponent or creature every time you draw a card, as well as having the nifty ability to tap him to draw a card. Anything that says he draws a card after damaging an opponent results in him drawing through the deck an typically wiping a good portion of the table out.

Planeswalkers (2): Jace Beleren, Chandra Nalaar

Sorceries (6): Invoke the Firemind, Lava Spike, Trade Secrets, Bribery, Mind's Aglow, Reminisce

Instant (8): Grab the Reins, Lightning Bolt, Unsummon, Vision Skeins, Desperate Ritual, Fact or Fiction, Spin into Myth, Repulse

Enchanments (4): Freed from the Real, Charisma, Ophidian Eye, Curiosity

Artifacts (11): Tatsumasa, the Dragon's Fang, Scythe of the Wretched, Myr Turbine, Basilisk Collar, Spectral Searchlight, Tenza, Godo's Maul, Foriysian Totem, Izzet Signet, Heart Seeker, Howling Mine, Riptide Replicator,

Creatures (36): Ninja of the Deep Hours, Sharding Sphinx, Myr Battlesphere, Tidewater Minion, Man-o'-war, Cytoplast Manipulator, Gelectrode, Avalanche Riders, Draining Whelk, Torchling, Dragon Whelp, Razorfin Hunter, Vithian Stinger, Iron Myr, Silver Myr, Furnace Whelp, Goblin Sharpshooter, Prodigal Pyromancer, Hissing Iguanar, Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir, Taurean Mauler, Merfolk Thaumaturgist, Dragonspeaker Shaman, Zuran Spellcaster, Rorix Bladewing, Flametongue Kavu, Izzet Guildmage, Akroma Angel of Fury, Vulshok Sorcerer, Anger, Rackling, Kumano, Master Yamabushi, Viseling, Eron the Relentless, Prodigal Sorcerer, Serra Sphinx

Lands (32): 10 Islands, 12 Mountains, Evolving Wilds, Lonely Sandbar, Remote Isle, Faerie Conclave, Command Tower, Forgotten Cave, Izzet Boilerworks, Steam Vents, Smoldering Crater, Valakut, the Molten Pinnnacle

Most of the deck revolves around creatures that can tap to do damage, carrying over the commanders theme. Within are a few little combos that can be devastating if they can go off: Desperate Ritual spliced on to Lava Spike can be replicated infinitely by the Izzet Guildmage; Tidewater Minion enchanted by Freed from the Real with a  Izzet Boilerworks can generate infinite mana for a giant  Invoke the Firemind or Mind's Aglow. Reminisce is in here to save you from milling yourself out completely. 

I'm considering replacing the creature bounce for more general permanent bounce as hexproof and shroud equipment seems to be the preferred method of protecting commanders. I'm also considering adding a Psychosis Crawler to the deck as he also works well with Niv.

Other cards under consideration are Whirlpool Warrior, works amazing if Niv or a crawler are on the table and helps to deal with opponents who spend the game crafting a perfect hand. Winds of Change if I can track one of these down it does the same thing as a sacrificed Whirlpool Warrior for a single red. Teferi's Puzzle Box can be amazing or terrible depending on how attached you are to your hand, however on the turn you go off it really doesn't matter. Consecrated Sphinx, Nin, the Pain Artist and Stuffy Doll are all also worth consideration.