Scrappy Survivors Upgrade Guide

Scrappy Survivors Upgrade Guide

Jacob LacknerCommander, Products

The next Universes Beyond set is Fallout, which releases on March 8th! The bulk of the set consists of four new Commander precons. Each of these decks has an iconic character from the franchise as its Commander. The Naya Scrappy Survivors deck features everyone’s favorite post-apocalyptic pup: Dogmeat, and it focuses on equipment and auras. In this article, I’ll review the precon and give you some recommendations for improving the deck! 


Dogmeat is a recruitable companion in most of the Fallout games. He not only helps you fight off hostile forces, he comes with the useful ability to go off and scavenge for you. Later, he returns with items in tow. Sometimes, he brings you something useful. Other times, he brings you junk.

They did a great job of capturing that with his Magic card. He can load up your graveyard and return Auras and Equipment, and he gives you junk tokens when an equipped or enchanted creature attacks. You can then cash in those junk tokens for more value. Notably, he gives you a junk token for each creature that attacks, not just one per combat. 

Dogmeat’s ability to make Junk tokens helps offset one the biggest downside of Equipping and enchanting creatures. If your opponent can ever deal with such a creature, you take a pretty big hit in terms of tempo and you usually go down cards too. The Junk tokens make sure you can find some more action in a hurry.

As usual, the deck also has a second option for a Commander. In this case, it’s another companion from the franchise – Preston Garvey, Minuteman. Unlike Dogmeat, he’s only really into Auras. He makes one that attaches to a land at the beginning of your combat, and any time he attacks, you untap each of your enchanted permanents. This can get especially interesting if you’re enchanting your lands.

Dogmeat is undoubtedly the better Commander for the deck, because he pays you off for all of the deck’s themes, not just Auras.

We’ve already seen a couple of legendary creatures that represent recruitable companions in the franchise, but it doesn’t end there! The deck actually features nine other legendary creatures who you can recruit in the Fallout franchise. 

In other words, when you buy this deck you’re getting 11 potential Commanders, although only Dogmeat and Preston Garvey can be the Commander of this Naya deck.


In addition to the two Naya legendary creatures I’ve already covered, the deck contains 36 other brand new cards. In this section, I’m going to touch on the ones that provide the best synergy for this deck’s gameplan, which is to suit up creatures with Equipment and Auras, and turn them sideways.

Let’s start with a look at some of the deck’s other legendary creatures. Cass and Three Dog both have Boros identities, and both of them do a great job of supporting the deck’s theme, although both of them are better with Auras than they are with Equipment.

One of the big downsides for Auras is often that if your opponent kills your enchanted creature, it’s a pretty big blow out. Cass makes sure that isn’t a problem, by putting all of your Auras back on the battlefield when an enchanted creature dies. She also lets you equip that creature for free.

When Three Dog attacks, you can sacrifice an Aura attached to him to make a token copy of that Aura that goes on each of your other creatures. That has some pretty insane potential, although the fact that you need a well built-out board to fully take advantage of it does keep him from being entirely busted.

Codsworth and Moira Brown are also quite powerful in this deck. Codsworth can make mana to cast Auras and Equipment, and can move your Auras and Equipment around for free. That last ability is fairly unique, as there are very few ways to move Auras around. Already Codsworth is a great card for the deck, but he also provides ward to your Commander, making it a little safer to put Equipment and Auras on Dogmeat himself.

Moira Brown makes an Equipment token when she enters the battlefield and it offers a buff based on the number of quest counters you have on permanents. She also gives you counters any time you attack. While I think she’s pretty good in this deck, she’s also fairly unique in that she’s the only quest counter payoff in the game, so she makes an interesting Commander in her own right.

The deck also features several non-legendary creatures who are great payoffs for Auras and Equipment. Armory Paladin can potentially give you a 2-for-1 any time you cast a card with one of those subtypes. Gunner Conscript and Mister Gutsy both get bigger the more Auras and Enchantments you have around, and they give you Junk when they die, making it even more attractive to suit them up.

So far, we’ve looked at the deck’s best Auras and Equipment payoffs. Obviously, to get those going, you’re going to need Equipment and Auras, and luckily the deck comes with several new ones.

Of the Equipment, Pre-War Formalwear and Junk Jet are the most unique. Pre-War Formalwear is not very efficient when it comes to the stats-boost it offers for the cost. However, the fact it reanimates a small creature and equips it for free is incredible. Because Dogmeat mills you, you’re likely to have a target most of the time.

Junk Jet doesn’t offer any stats boost initially, but its ability to double the equipped creature’s power has massive potential. I do think it’s a little bit clunky, as needing to have three generic mana and something worth sacrificing will be a pain sometimes. However, it does give you a Junk token up front, and it isn’t like this deck will have a hard time making more of them.

Of the deck’s new Auras, Grim Reaper’s Sprint and Strong Back are the most intriguing. Grim Reaper’s Sprint is an aura that gives you an extra combat phase. If things are going according to plan, your creatures are going to be very capable of ending the game with that second combat phase.

Strong Back has a baseline of giving your Enchanted creature +2/+2 and making it easier to enchant and Equip, and most of the time it’s going to offer a far larger boost than that.

The last card I’d like to look at is Megaton’s Fate. It doesn’t offer any particular synergy for this deck, but this card looks great for Red Commander decks in general. It represents a moment in Fallout 3, where you make a choice between helping the people of Megaton or destroying the town. So, it makes perfect sense that it’s a modal card!

As with many modal cards, neither of its modes are all that efficient. The first mode is especially unimpressive, as six mana to destroy an artifact is pretty rough, even if you get four Treasure tokens out of it. However, this is basically just upside on a card that is a fairly powerful sweeper.

Doing 8 to everything is likely to eliminate most creatures. The four rad counters will also stock the graveyards and pick away at everyone’s life totals too.


While Scrappy Survivors is powerful enough to play it right out of the box, there are some affordable upgrades you can make to the deck. The goal of these changes is to lean even harder into the deck’s focus on both Enchantments and Artifacts. One small issue the deck has is that some of its cards only pay you off for one or the other, but to get maximum value out of cards with those subtypes, you need some more cards that care about both.

For example, Danitha Capashen makes it easier to cast Equipment and Auras, and her trio of keyword abilities makes her a great place to put them. And Sram will draw you cards any time you cast them.

Kellan can tutor up your Auras and Equipment with his Adventure, and the more Auras and Equipment you’ve attached to him, the more he buffs your board. Heavenly Blademaster also offers a mass pump effect for every Aura and Equipment on her, and she can put all of your Auras and Equipment on herself when she enters the battlefield.

Nettlecyst is a great Equipment for the deck. Because it has Living Weapon, you get a creature out of it, and the boost it offers is going to be huge in this deck. Not only do you have plenty of Auras and Equipment, but Nettlecyst also buffs your creatures with all the Junk you have lying around.

Nettlecyst provides a nice transition, because the deck could also use some better Equipment and Auras. Right now, the deck features too many Auras that attach to your lands. While that works great with Preston, there isn’t a whole lot of other synergy for them in the deck. It’s better to include more Auras and Equipment that make your creatures better.

Skullclamp and Umezawa’s Jitte are two of the most powerful Equipment ever printed, and they are both surprisingly affordable. The clamp doesn’t offer a very good stats boost, but drawing two every time a creature you control dies is absolutely insane. The Jitte needs your creature to get in for a hit, but once you do you get access to a slew of powerful options.

Embercleave is an Equipment that can come down out of nowhere and offer a massive boost. Usually, it lets you run over your opponent’s creature and get in for a ton of damage, and it can even just end a game immediately.

Blackblade Reforged is a good fit for this deck because it has so many legendary creatures in it. The stats boost is offers is absolutely massive, and can make any creature into a must-kill threat.

The deck could also really use both Bear Umbra and Snake Umbra. These powerful Auras offer decent stats-boosts and powerful effects when your creature hits your opponent. That, combined with Totem armor, makes them especially attractive. Totem armor protects the creature that these are attached to, really creating problems for your opponent.

You can find the updated Scrappy Survivors list here.

These cards were removed to make room for these upgrades:


If money isn’t an issue, or you already own these cards, there are some additional upgrades you can make.

Stoneforge Mystic can tutor up your best Equipment and then cheat it into play. Esper Sentinel is a Commander staple, and it performs even better in this deck than most! The bigger you make the Sentinel, the harder it is for your opponent to pay the tax.

There’s some other powerful Equipment out there too. All of the cards in the Sword of X and X cycle are pretty insane, as they offer +2/+2, protection from two colors, and powerful “combat damage to a player” triggers. 

Shadowspear offers an incredibly efficient stats boost, and the combination of trample and lifelink allows you to really pressure your opponent’s life total while putting yours through the roof.


Scrappy Survivors is a great Commander precon, and you can make it even greater with a minimal investment. What do you think of this new precon? Let me know over on X