Unstable Mutation: Veloci-Ramp-Tor Upgrade (Lost Caverns of Ixalan Commander)

The Veloci-Ramp-Tor deck is one of 4 preconstructed Commander decks released alongside the Lost Caverns of Ixalan set. It’s a Naya (Red, Green, and White) color identity deck with a heavy Dinosaur theme out of the box. The deck also contains 8 new cards, and we’ll evaluate them all.


Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Pantlaza, Sun-Favored

Starting off strong with the main event, Pantlaza is the face of the deck out of the box, and the one we will be building around today because c’mon, they’re sweet as hell. Dinosaurs are an awesome tribe, and one of the few things more awesome in the game is getting things for free. Yes you only get it once per turn but that’s still excellent. You’re either ramping towards your big threats or putting another big threat into play for free, and either way it’s advancing your game. This is an aggressive deck, so you want to be going fast and eliminating players as fast as you can.


Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Wayta, Trainer Prodigy

I’m really happy to see Wayta as a commander, there are a solid chunk of Dinosaurs with the Enrage mechanic, but it’s a bit fiddly, especially without some sort of a dedicated commander. Wayta gives us exactly that, allowing cheaply and repeatedly having your Brash Taunter fight your Silverclad Ferocidons and the like, and then doubling up on all of the triggers. It seems like a super fun deck if maybe not super powerful and while it can work with the Pantlaza deck more than a lot of the precons, we’re going to split it out for our build.


Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Bronzebeak Foragers

This is a solid piece of pseudo removal for the best thing on each opponents’ board that can turn into actual removal for an additional cost, with some incidental life gain tacked on which never hurts. These kinds of cards are great, offering an effect like removal that all decks need stapled on to a relevant tribal body frees up slots elsewhere, even if it is less efficient than pure dedicated removal.


Credit: Wizards of the Coast

From the Rubble

There are quite a few versions of this type of effect, and this is arguably one of the better ones. It does it at end step, so this should trigger at least once unlike the ones that wait until your following upkeep or the like which are more susceptible to removal. Unlike red versions it also lets the creature stick around with a finality counter rather than automatically exiling at the end of turn, which is significantly better. That being said, it’s still relatively expensive and slow, so while I don’t think there’s anything wrong with keeping it in your deck, I probably won’t in mine.


Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Wrathful Raptors

This card, on the other hand, is a hilarious slam dunk auto include. There’s obviously the baseline of this is just good and makes combat with your giant monsters even worse for the other players that would already be worth the inclusion BUT this becomes potentially game winning once combined with a damage based board wipe. There’s a reason the deck comes with Chandra’s Ignition, and why I will be including Blasphemous Act in the upgrade.


Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Dinosaur Egg

This isn’t a bad card if you get it out early, serving as an early blocker and then building up over time before finally giving you a free spell when it dies as part of a board wipe. The problem is if you draw this late it’s bad, and even in the ideal case it’s both slow and perfectly capable of hitting a 3 drop ramp spell off of the giant discover number you’ve buffed it to, which is going to feel awful.


Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Scion of Calamity

I really like myriad creatures with useful effects, and this is an excellent one. Yes you need to connect with it which isn’t ideal, but it’s on a sizeable body so it should be able to make the attempt consistently, and a lot of decks can’t block this turn after turn. Sure you still need to pack actual removal for the annoying token player since this can be chump blocked, but this has the possibility of really messing up people’s game plan if it can connect every turn. Bonus points if you can hand out trample.


Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Sunfrill Imitator

Kind of an interesting clone that lets you continue turning into the best threat on your board during any given turn. That makes it pretty solid, and the fact it dodges the legendary rule is great too, especially since Dinosaurs have some really spicy ones. Note that you can copy your Pantlaza for double discover triggers, which can get scary quickly.


Upgrading the Deck

The deck right out of the box is pretty dang solid, as most of the precons are these days. Yes there is the built in divide between cards meant for Pantlaza and Wayta since these decks are meant to serve as a starting point with options, but it’s much less of a divide than in a lot of decks since you’re still wanting Dinos either way. It may not be optimal but triggering enrage a couple of times per game is solid extra value, and Wayta’s ability turns into solid, repeatable creature removal with fighting other people’s creatures, which is still very valuable. Even so, we’re going to be swapping out a number of things that work better with Wayta as well as Wayta herself in favor of a slightly more focused list.

Next, the mana bases are a place that can use a good bit of upgrading in the precons usually, but like in many of the more recent ones I actually don’t feel the need to tweak too much on this one. There are a few unconditional enters tapped lands that should go, and I am going to cut most or all of the reveal and X or it enters tapped lands since you can sometimes end up with a critical mass of those in hand with nothing to reveal, but this is perfectly playable right out of the box. You never want to actually be stumbling on lands, but there are some political reasons not to be the most threatening player right out of the gate, and if it appears that you are because of a tapped land or two it may well work out in your favor as other players eat removal that might otherwise be meant for you.

Finally, it’s mostly a matter of swapping out some things that can be done a little better, or adding in extra utility. For instance cards like Drover of the Mighty aren’t outright bad since they’re ramping you into your big end game spells, but they are creature based ramp which can tend to get caught in the board wipe crossfire, meaning not only do you lose your threats but also your ramp. Instead we’ll be adding in more traditional land ramp. We are making an exception for Atzocan Seer though since its additional ability to Eternal Witness a creature back is great. Since there’s a pretty decent amount of flexibility with having fun in this deck build, I’m also including a few cards in the sideboard that I would consider swapping in for a few games and seeing how they play for you, and adjusting for personal taste


Cut List

  • 1 Wayta, Trainer Prodigy
  • Bellowing Aegisaur
  • Dinosaur Egg
  • Drover of the Mighty
  • Itzquinth, Firstborn of Gishath
  • Ixalli’s Lorekeeper
  • Majestic Heliopterus
  • Marauding Raptor
  • Otepec Huntmaster
  • Raging Regisaur
  • Raging Swordtooth
  • Ranging Raptors
  • Ripjaw Raptor
  • Shifting Ceratops
  • Temple Altisaur
  • Xenagos, God of Revels
  • Fiery Confluence
  • Savage Stomp
  • Thunderheard Migration
  • Lifecrafter’s Bestiary
  • From the Rubble


Add List

  • 1 Bonehoard Dracosaur
  • Dinosaurs on a Spaceship
  • Gishath, Sun’s Avatar
  • Nature’s Lore
  • Hunting Velociraptor
  • Kodama’s Reach
  • Goring Ceratops
  • Ghalta, Stampede Tyrant
  • Three Visits
  • Ghalta, Primal Hunger
  • Savage Order
  • Urza’s Incubator
  • Garruk’s Uprising
  • Palani’s Hatcher
  • Etali, Primal Conqueror / Etali, Primal Sickness
  • The Great Henge
  • Blasphemous Act
  • Last March of the Ents
  • Cryptic Gateway
  • Guardian Project
  • Zendikar Resurgent





Have any questions or feedback? Drop us a note in the comments below or email us at contact@goonhammer.com.