In this article, we’ll explore perhaps tho most iconic MTG creature type with tribal synergies. That’s right, it’s time to take a look at the best Slivers from Magic the Gathering.
Slivers are the best example of an excellent tribal creature type. The design and lore behind these creatures resembles a hive or a hivemind. This means that what one Sliver knows, every Sliver knows.
Thus, Slivers is the only tribe in the game which isn’t meant to be played in any other deck shell, but tribal. This deliberate card design makes them one of the most overwhelming and powerful tribes in the entire game.
I’ll talk about which Slivers are a must-have for any tribal deck – whether that’s a 60 card casual deck or a 100-card Commander deck. We’ll first take a look at the honorable mentions, cards that just barely missed the Top 10, which follows next. At the end, I’ll wrap everything up with the best Sliver commanders.
When you’re playing a Sliver tribal deck, your main goal is to have as many Slivers in play as possible. Therefore, there are many creatures which are very playable. However, some cuts had to be made in order to get to the top 10 list, that’s why we have quite a long Honorable Mentions section here.
One of the most common ways a Sliver card is designed is by assigning a color to it and then giving them a keyword ability of that color. Then, because Slivers work like a hive, that Sliver gives all other Slivers the same ability.
Here are some of the best Slivers with simple but powerful keyword (or stats buffing) abilities:
|Flying and Haste
Now, here are more Slivers, but with a bit more complex abilities. These creatures have abilities that are not as straightforward as the previous ones, and in this way they provide a bit more flavor and power to the overall deck.
|Whenever this creature is dealt damage, it deals that much damage to target player or planeswalker.
|Whenever a Sliver creature you control becomes the target of a spell or ability an opponent controls, counter that spell or ability unless its controller pays 2.
|Pay 2 life: Return this permanent to its owner’s hand.
|All Sliver creatures have poisonous 1.
|Sliver spells can’t be countered.
|Whenever a Sliver deals combat damage to a player, its controller may put a 1/1 colorless Sliver creature token into play.
|Whenever this creature becomes the target of a spell an opponent controls, you may draw a card.
|Whenever a Sliver you control attacks, defending player loses 1 life.
|Tap: Regenerate target Sliver.
Among these, Crypt Sliver is probably the closest to making it to the top 10. The ability to regenerate any Sliver is amazing, as keeping the key Slivers in play is often crucial.
Before we move to the top 10, let’s take a look at some cards that can be incredibly good in a dedicated Sliver deck, but were left out of the main list because they aren’t Slivers themselves.
First up, Sliver Hive is the perfect land for the deck, as it provides both mana fixing, and Sliver tokens. While a random 1/1 Sliver might not look too exciting, keep in mind that it will pick up any abilities from your other Slivers, so it might be a real deal.
Next up, there’s Reflections of Littjara, which is good in pretty much any tribal deck, but it’s especially amazing in this one. You cast a Sliver, and you also get a token copy of it. What’s not to like?
Realmwalker is also incredibly good in any tribal deck because it allows you to cast creatures from the top of your library, this makes establishing a board presence way easier. On top of that, it’ll also count as a Sliver for all of your synergies.
The last card I want to mention in this section is Vanquisher’s Banner. It buffs your team, and provides card advantage. Especially the latter is very useful in a Sliver deck.
With that said, let’s move to the list of the best Sliver in the game.
#10 Homing Sliver
This card also has an ability that players often overlook – cycling. This is a really useful ability to have in a card because it allows you to get rid of unwanted cards from your hand and at the same time provide you with a replacement for the cost of 3 mana.
This card is a little different in the way in which it lets you cycle, but instead of drawing a card, you can just search for any Sliver you want. Of course, it gives this same ability to every other Sliver you have. This means you can get the perfect Sliver for any scenario.
#9 Hollowhead Sliver
Another similar card is Hollowhead Sliver also provides card selection for your deck. This card has a tap ability, which allows you to discard and draw a card. The same thing goes for your other Slivers too.
This allows you to significantly improve the quality of cards in your hand. The fact that it needs to tap is somewhat unfortunate, but with the combination of other Slivers that might give all creatures vigilance, this ability is pretty good.
#8 Sliver Overlord
This is, once again, another similar card to the past ones but with improved abilities. It is similar to Homing Sliver in the fact that it tutors for a Sliver card by paying 3, but this card does not need to cycle in order to do so. This means that you don’t have to lose any card in order for you to tutor for a Sliver. You can also activate it plenty of times, since you don’t need to tap it.
Finally, it also allows you to pay 3 and gain control of a target Sliver. This means if one of your Slivers gets stolen or an opponent also has a creature of this type, you’ll be able to gain control of it.
#7 Harmonic Sliver
In most games, especially in Commander, your opponents will play plenty of enchantments and artifacts. That’s where Harmonic Sliver really shines with its amazing ability. You’ll play your Slivers, and you’ll get rid of opposing problematic permanents. This is yet another powerful weapon in your Sliver arsenal, which will assure you have dominance over the game.
#6 Quick Sliver
Stepping away from card draw abilities, Quick Sliver brings flash to the table. Its ability is as simple as it sounds. It has flash, and it gives all other Slivers flash. Why do I think this effect is better than card draw?
Well, it provides you with the element of surprise. It also allows you to be more productive with the usage of your resources, as you’re now able to play Slivers at any time and in response to anything. For example, your opponents won’t be able to get rid of the cards you’re about to play with a sorcery speed mass removal.
#5 Lavabelly Sliver
Lavabelly Sliver has a fascinating enter the battlefield effect. It deals one damage to a target player or planeswalker, and it gives this same ability to all other Slivers you control.
This slowly takes away life points from your opponents, while getting them to you. With lots of Slivers being played, this card is devastating. It also has incredible combo potential, which makes this card a great addition to any Sliver deck.
#4 Manaweft Sliver & Gemhide Sliver
These two Slivers are part of the most underappreciated category of creatures in the game. That is mana dorks, or creatures that produce mana in one way or another. Newer players might look at them and think, “Eh, you know, I guess they’re okay…”
When in reality, mana dorks are incredibly useful in almost every deck. What sets these two apart from the typical mana dork is their ability to share their ability in the classic Sliver way. The fact that they can make all Slivers produce mana makes them even more powerful than simple mana dorks. The games where you have any of these two in play, will go much better for you than the games, where you’re missing them.
#3 Shifting Sliver
Slivers as a tribe is known for its explosiveness and board presence. Win conditions are usually combo pieces, value, or damage based. What better way of doing the latter than by attacking. And if you want to attack efficiently, this card provides one of the best abilities for aggressive play styles.
It makes all Slivers unblockable except by other Slivers. This often means that your Slivers just can’t be blocked, and with many buffs that other Slivers provide, you might be able to win the game on the turn you play this.
#2 Ward Sliver
Ward Sliver can help you attack safely, and it also protects your team from removal. If you choose the right color, you’ll be able to neutralize most of your opponent’s cards.
If you are playing in a 1v1 scenario it’s often game over, if you play in a multiplayer format it guarantees you an incredible advantage against most opponents. In general, color protection as an ability can be incredibly broken, and giving it to all creatures you control is very strong.
#1 Sliver Legion
One of the few cards in the list which can fill the role of Commander perfectly, as it can pretty much bring the end of the game itself, Sliver Legion is the perfect card to represent the idea behind Slivers.
The whole theme behind the tribe is that of a hive, which share their abilities with all. It is an entire unit of creatures which alone are powerful, but put together are almost invincible. This creature provides one of the most impactful abilities.
It gives +1/+1 to all Slivers equal to the amount of Slivers you control, which is insane. Legion instantly makes your whole board a lot bigger and a lot scarier when it comes into play. Highly impactful card.
Best Sliver Commanders
So, now that we have all the Top 10 best Slivers established, let’s talk about three important cards that were not included. These following creatures are not a part of the main list because they deserve to be talked about separately.
These three cards are arguably the top three best Slivers in the whole game, but what makes them even better is that they are Legendaries, which means they can be played as Commanders.
#3 Sliver Hivelord
This creature provides access to all colors in the game, which is essential in any Sliver tribal deck. It is also relatively easy and cheap to find (compared to the next card). The most important aspect is its ability to give all Sliver creatures you control indestructible. This is, obviously, a really powerful ability, as it makes it incredibly hard to deal with your creatures.
Now let’s talk about the most famous or maybe infamous Sliver card out there:
#2 Sliver Queen
This card is known for being the first fantastic Sliver Commander. It is also known for its insane rarity and price, which is a result of the Reserved List.
Once again, it is a creature that provides all colors in the game. It also has good stats, better compared to Sliver Hivelord, being a 7/7 for 5 mana. However, most of its power comes from its last ability. For a measly two mana you can create a Sliver token, as we’ve said before, the token will usually be much better than a random 1/1. On top of that, you don’t have to tap the Queen, so you can just pump as many tokens as you have mana available.
Lastly, we have, arguably, the best Sliver:
#1 The First Sliver
This creature is also one of the newest Slivers on the list. Funny enough, it is the oldest in the Lore, and therefore one of the most powerful. It has the really fun and explosive mechanic cascade, which essentially draws you nonland cards, and casts them for 0 mana. In typical Sliver fashion, it gives this same ability to every other Sliver you control.
So, this makes for a powerful and fun commander to play with. It also has the same stats as Sliver Queen being a 7/7 for 5 mana. In some ways, it is actually an improved and cheaper version of the classic card.
The Newest Commander: Sliver Gravemother
Last but not least, here’s the most recent Sliver commander. Sliver Gravemother wasn’t even released yet, so I didn’t include it into the regular rankings. To get it, you’ll have to wait until August 2023.
Anyway, let’s talk about the card. It has the weird rules text about “legend rule” not applying. This seems out of place until you read the rest of the card.
Gravemother has the encore ability, and in a typical Sliver fashion, it provides that ability to all other Slivers too. Encore allows you to get a one-time use from creatures in your graveyard. You get as many copies, as you have opponents, so you really want to use Gravemother in a multiplayer format.
However, once you have multiple opponents, you can do all sorts of crazy stuff with it. Getting multiple Sliver Legions in play will make your Sliver army massive. Multiples of The First Sliver grant your Sliver spells with multiple instances of cascade.
If you’re interested in acquiring this card, then you should take a closer look at this next product, as you’re probably going to like it.
Sliver Commander Precon
Commander Masters, a set full of great reprints is coming in August 2023, and alongside it, we’re also getting four Commander Masters precons. One of them is Sliver themed, with Sliver Gravemother as the face commander, so we thought to mention the deck here.
If you’re planning on building a Sliver deck, or just want to expand your collection, then this will be a great product to get. You get a ready-to-play deck, for a fair price. Once the full decklists is released, this whole article might get yet another upgrade, as we’re probably getting more brand-new Slivers.
All things considered, Slivers are one of the most popular tribal creature types in the whole game. They are one of the best representations of how game mechanics can compliment an idea or theme.
They are also one of the oldest and most bizarre creature types because of their lore, art, and abilities. Their characteristic mechanic of sharing abilities between all creatures is great, and it shows cohesion. That’s why, these creatures are so fun to build around. I hope this list has given you an idea of some of the cards that can be included in a Sliver tribal deck.
As always, this list is based on my opinion, so if you agree, disagree or have any comments about my additions, feel free to let me know in the comment section.
If you are interested in more Commander content, check the following articles:
Have fun, stay safe, and go for wins with your Slivers!