Blanka Storm

17 Aug 2022 - 7 min read

The Hexdrinkers are proudly sponsored by

TCGplayer Affiliate Link

It’s not often I’ll turn the other cheek from the bottomless greed that spawned both Universes Beyond and Secret Lairs - but for Blanka, Ferocious Friend , damn I’d kiss Adam Smith on the mouth. So many beautiful parts of capitalism sang in perfect harmony to make this card a reality: A limited release product designed to create scarcity both real and imagined, IP licensing agreements between giants that bend the rules of a 30-year old multiverse, And I can’t even begin to imagine the amount of legalese required for a Magic: The Gathering card to be printed with Hadoken.

image sourced from scryfall.com

Yes, all that and more to bring this giant green warrior to cardboard. Frankly, I couldn’t be happier. I know nothing about Street Fighter, nor will I ever learn. But I do know commanders and Blanka truly seems busted. Dealing 2 damage to each opponent every time Blanka finds himself the target of a spell? Guttersnipe , you’ve out-done yourself. Not to let the deck tech out of the bag too early, but lemme drop some tech bombs on ya and see if you’re interested in making Spellslinging a part of Gruul’s EDH wheelhouse.

Whip Silk
 Keen Sense

How do those make you feel? Good? Evil? Bit of both? Excellent. You’re ready to learn the ways of the beast.

The Strategy

When the Street Fighter cards were first revealed, EDHRec did a fantastic piece on a Blanka build using auras. I highly recommend checking out if you’re someone who wants to take advantage of Blanka’s more “Voltron” ability. For our deck, we’ll consider Voltron our plan “B”. Instead, we’re going to continue proving that anything blue can do green can do better, with an absolutely bonkers spellslinger deck that doesn’t include the color most well known for spell slinging.

Target Acquired

This means we’re going for quantity over quality and running every cantrip/combat trick Gruul has to offer that can target Blanka and help trigger our win-con:

 Psychotic Fury
 Fists of Flame

Most of these cantrips will buff Blanka too, which he certainly appreciates, but none more than Psychotic Fury. Even if that’s the only spell cast in a turn, our hero will still be swinging for 14. Zoowee mama.

But power enhancements are only half the story. In case you forgot, we’re also in green which means great things for our favorite Brazilian Jungle Man:

Verdant Rebirth
 Wild Shape
 Tamiyo’s Safekeeping

Remember all those instant-speed single-target protection spells green has? The ones you always tell yourself you’re going to add more of but then decide a Lightning Greaves and a Swiftfoot Boots is enough? Yeah. They’re amazing with Blanka. Whether you hold them up to protect our commander in the off season or use one or two to protect a truly electric turn of slinging… both cases will end in the utter annihilation of your opponents.

One of the largest differences between Blanka and traditional pingers is we’re keying off of spells that target Blanka specifically, not just instants and sorceries. Which means there’s one more type of spell we should talk about, even in our more direct-damage style strategy:

Snake Umbra
 Whip Silk
 Season of Growth

This is also where I get to talk about a couple of our best value pieces. Both Snake Umbra and Keen Sense have the audacity to say “Whenever enchanted creature deals damage to an opponent…” notedly NOT specifying combat damage. So whether it’s Blanka or our backup singers Kessig Flamebreather , Firebrand Archer , or Guttersnipe - each trigger will net us three cards. It’s crazy. It’s stupid. It upset every Hexdrinker when I first debuted it.

And, for double jeopardy - Whip Silk and Crown of Flames . Both from that one cycle from Invasion that spiked with Tatsunari, Toad Rider , they are just as, if not more, effective with Blanka, generating 6 points of damage minimum with every recursion. Slap one of these puppies down when Snake Umbra is out and about and you’ve got yourself a magical Christmas land.

Finally, Season of Growth is amazing in a deck already promising to target with reckless abandon. We might be drawing more than blue ngl.

Storm on the Horizon

So we’re not actually a Storm deck… but we are flirting with the idea.

Aetherflux Reservoir
 Mizzix’s Mastery

It’s just that Storm and Blanka have so much in common. oth want to be playing as many spells as possible, as fast as possible (Editor’s note: what a novel concept!) Aetherflux Reservoir essentially serves as a backup win-con from just frying our opponents the old fashioned way, while Mizzix enables truly gangbusters turns in the end game. As for Grapeshot and Ground Rift , instead of focusing on aiming these totally fair cards at our opponents, they’re actually the best Blanka-fodder we’ve got in the 99. Since Blanka gets +2/+2 with every targeted spell, Grapeshot’s one damage per copy will never get through and Blanka doesn’t need these spells that target to be cast so… you see where I’m going with this.

Storm is also why we’re running a bunch of MDFCs that still work with Blanka ( Vastwood Fortification and Khalni Ambush , among others) so we have as high a chance as possible to “go off” when the stars align.


We have a couple. The pingers mentioned earlier are the real meat of the creature package, but they’ve got friends in classic staples like:

Birgi, God of Storytelling
 Selvala, Heart of the Wilds
 Torbran, Thane of Red Fell

Each bringing their important set of skills letting us do Very Bad Things. Oh. And if you really want to upset your friends and alienate people, we’ve got Bothersome Quasit . It’d be a shame if all those other creatures just kept attacking…


That’s it! We’ve arrived at the end a whole 500 words sooner because Blanka is just that good. He’s here to turn and burn, pain and gain, stomp and chomp. That last one was a stretch but we got there. Oh! And if you love the beast but not the corporate greed - Blanka’s “Universes Within” print should be coming to us in Dominaria United!

Full deck list both here and on Moxfield, enjoy!

Build A Beast

More Entries in Commander:

See All...