Too-Specific Top 10 – Commander IS a Stick? – EDHREC


Welcome to Too-Specific Top 10, the place if there isn’t a class to rank our pet card on the high of, we’ll simply make one up! (Did you recognize that Arixmethes, Slumbering Isle is the one commander that enters the battlefield as a land?)

One of the primary spoilers we received within the present firehose of recent playing cards from Kaldheim was Halvar, God of Battle, and he received me actually excited. Not as a result of I’m going to play him, thoughts you. Don’t get me improper, he’s a effective Equipment commander, and he supplies sufficient double strike that I completely suppose he can end as a mono-white aggro technique. No, what excites me about Halvar is that he brings me one step nearer to having on the spot or sorcery “commander”.

You see, earlier this 12 months with the printing of Ikoria, I went off the deep finish on Umori, the Collector. Those that were around may remember a rambling incoherent mass of decklists and justifications for my instinctual need to build a deck made exclusively out of lands and a single card type to the masses, mostly unsuccessfully. That want stays, and it bugs me that we nonetheless have but to have even a correct Rule Zero excuse for a commander that may match the invoice as being a sorcery or an on the spot. Instead, I merely stapled commanders which may synergize with a pile of instants (Grismold, the Dreadsower) or sorceries (Nath of the Gilt-Leaf), and hoped that rule zero would care for the remaining.

But now I yearn for it. I require it. I discover myself privately (and now publicly, I suppose) imploring Wizards of the Coast to finish the set and supply me with a commander who’s technically a sorcery, and one other that’s technically an on the spot, so I can end this dumb completionist quest.

So, I used to be fairly excited to see Halvar as a result of he’s one other step in that path, which received me questioning… What different commanders are on the market that stretch the definition additional and additional away from being simply a legendary creature, because the Elder Dragons meant?

Top 10 “Non-Creature” Commanders

Ultimately, we would like these hypothetical commanders to have the ability to truly be an on the spot or sorcery in some style, as that may meet the technical definition of Umori’s Companion restriction. Given that I can’t even fathom how that may work wanting slapping (This spell could be your commander) onto the underside of an Inferno, I’m very happy to take my irrational necessities on the effort and time of Wizards R&D in child steps. So as an alternative, let’s do this:

Criteria: Commanders that may be performed or can enter the battlefield as a non-creature in some style. As is custom, all outcomes are ordered by EDHREC rating. This time round, on condition that we’re rating commanders, particularly, we’re ordering the listing in accordance with the variety of decks that every commander personally helms, though whole inclusions are nonetheless listed for gee-whiz functions.

There, that’s no less than getting us nearer to our ultimate vacation spot. A commander that may be forged as a completely different form of spell, like a legendary Beanstalk Giant or Garenbrig Carver. A modal dual-faced card that may be forged as both a Wrath of God or a legendary hatebear. A legendary creature that by some means enters the battlefield as a spell. Look, I’m not @WotC_Matt, don’t ask me how that may work. The level is, the nearer we will get to a “commander” that may be forged as one thing that isn’t a creature, the nearer we’re.

So let’s see how shut we’re at present, lets?

10. Saheeli, the Gifted

(Helms 1249 Decks, Rank #106; 3019 Inclusions, 3% of 114235 Decks)

I’m positive for a lot of of you, the primary idea that got here to thoughts studying the “non-creature” standards was planeswalker commanders. While Saheeli, the Gifted was not a part of the unique mono-colored cycle from Commander 2014 that first made it attainable to play a planeswalker as a commander, she is likely one of the finest choices do you have to select to take action. Being in a position to slap down a Servo to guard her is superb, however extra typically what you will note is a pure artifact deck utilizing her +1 to slap down one thing like a Blightsteel Colossus or a Darksteel Forge. Should she stick round lengthy sufficient to get her final, nonetheless, that’s when the true enjoyable begins. Mana rocks alone can win you the sport for those who immediately get to double them, however throw in a couple Chief of the Foundrys and Inkwell Leviathans and the desk is in actual bother.

9. Kruphix, God of Horizons

(Helms 1310 Decks, Rank #98; 6321 Inclusions, 5% of 122267 Decks)

While on any zone aside from the battlefield, Kruphix, God of Horizons and their Theros God friends are technically creatures. More typically than not, nonetheless, once you forged them they’ll come into play as indestructible enchantments, which fits gamers effective given how rather more troublesome it’s to take away enchantments, not to mention indestructible enchantments. If you might be sitting on that Forsake the Worldly, nonetheless, you could need to reserve it for Kruphix hitting play, as a result of it’s the unique damaged Simic commander. Sure, having an Upwelling or a Reliquary Tower in your deck is all effectively and effective… But when you’ll be able to mix the 2, make them indestructible, and have them assured within the command zone? That’s gonna get out of hand rapidly.

8. Athreos, God of Passage

(Helms 1323 Decks, Rank #95; 5652 Inclusions, 5% of 112792 Decks)

Athreos, God of Passage wasn’t all the time the bell of the ball when it got here to the Theros gods, however an appearance on Game Knights modified all that. At this level, virtually half of the full Athreos decks in existence sport a number of Shadowborn Apostles, with one other 40 on high of that as an alternative stacking up as many copies of Relentless Rats and Rat Colony as attainable. Even for those who can’t play a deck made up of all the identical playing cards (which, let’s be honest, you should), then you’ll be able to nonetheless fill an Orzhov Aristocrats construct to the brim with low-cost sac shops, payoffs, and token-generators, and Athreos will care for the remaining. Sure, at first you received’t get many creatures again, however as life totals dwindle, paying three life will get much less and fewer cheap!

7. Karametra, God of Harvests

(Helms 1382 Decks, Rank #88; 5989 Inclusions, 6% of 106093 Decks)

If you had requested me earlier than compiling this listing, I might have stated that Karametra, God of Harvests was a Selesnya staple within the 99 however isn’t actually performed as a commander. Turns out, it’s not simply in style, it’s within the high 100! Which, given how a lot Commander gamers wish to ramp, perhaps shouldn’t have shocked me. Regardless of what zone you’re enjoying Karametra in, nonetheless, trying to find a number of lands a flip will get ridiculous quick. Just… perhaps carry an automated shuffler with you? We’ve solely received a lot time to sit down round ready on you, you recognize?

6. Xenagos, God of Revels

(Helms 1407 Decks, Rank #86; 7876 Inclusions, 8% of 104226 Decks)

Xenagos, God of Revels remains to be the quintessential aggro commander, Berserking a creature each fight, solely with toughness and haste to go along with it. Sure, you must present the trample your self, however that’s not precisely exhausting to do in Gruul now, is it? Also, pro-tip for those who’ve by no means performed towards Xenagos: It can goal itself as soon as it’s a creature, and 12 commander harm straight out of the command zone will finish video games.

5. Estrid, the Masked

(Helms 1449 Decks, Rank #82; 1665 Inclusions, 3% of 64025 Decks)

For years, we begged for an Enchantress commander in Bant colours, and Commander 2018 got here via with not one, however three of them. And whereas Estrid, the Masked nonetheless lags behind Tuvasa the Sunlit by virtually a thousand decks, I discover it to be essentially the most fascinating of the three decisions by far. Not solely are your choices extra plentiful by design with a planeswalker, however Estrid particularly permits for a distinctive construct that stresses Auras and untapping, combining for a loopy cavalcade of Wild Growths, Utopia Sprawls, and Spawning Grounds all tapping and untapping for large quantities of mana and loopy enormous results. Lots of people wish to argue that Tuvasa wins out over Estrid as a result of Tuvasa is simply inherently extra highly effective, however actually? I’m undecided a lot of these of us making that argument have ever truly seen an Estrid deck actually go off.

4. Phenax, God of Deception

(Helms 1464 Decks, Rank #81; 2161 Inclusions, 2% of 127139 Decks)

Woah, mill alert! In the highest 5! I might have anticipated Phenax, God of Deception to be down within the honorable mentions, however right here we’re, staring down what seems to nonetheless be the premiere mill commander regardless of the current printing of Bruvac, the Grandiloquent. Phenax mills for seven all by itself when you get the correct Devotion, however having the ability to faucet all of your defensive creatures which might be maintaining you alive on the finish of your opponent’s flip tends to be what actually will get you transferring. If you’re actually in search of the slam dunk, nonetheless, would possibly I direct you to our crab lord and savior, Charix, the Raging Isle?

3. Arixmethes, Slumbering Isle

(Helms 1469 Decks, Rank #80; 2805 Inclusions, 2% of 122267 Decks)

I believed we had been going to undergo the entire listing with out seeing something extra distinctive than planeswalker and Theros God commanders, however nay! Arixmethes, Slumbering Isle is likely one of the extra distinctive commanders to return out of not simply Commander 2018 (and that set has Xantcha, Sleeper Agent), however Magic usually. Coming into play as a land with 5 slumber counters, Arixmethes solely awakes and shakes off its native village when you forged 5 spells, until you’ll be able to handle some Clockspinning shenanigans. Whether or not you speed up the method, nonetheless, there’s something to be stated for having a Sisay’s Ring within the command zone…

2. Aminatou, the Fateshifter

(Helms 2464 Decks, Rank #29; 2696 Inclusions, 4% of 66932 Decks)

Speaking of distinctive commanders, I believe it took the brewing neighborhood as a entire a couple months to actually resolve precisely what to do with Aminatou, the Fateshifter. And the reply was: Kinda no matter you need. Being low-cost at simply Esper mana to forged, Aminatou can come down early and do a Brainstorm-lite, making her the proper top-of-library tribal commander. Or for those who’d fairly use that unusual loot only for card high quality functions till you have got your blink targets on the battlefield, then Aminatou can add a entire different shade to your Brago, the Eternal deck. In both case, nonetheless, you’re nonetheless left scratching your head about how precisely you’re going to make use of her final. Sure, you could possibly exile your entire board till finish of flip with Sudden Disappearance, however that appears each a bit straightforward and a bit particular. Why not, as an alternative, do what you’re not alleged to do and construct a deck round a planeswalker’s final with a White Elephant theme?

1. Lord Windgrace

(Helms 3483 Decks, Rank #11; 1940 Inclusions, 3% of 56607 Decks)

Once you noticed the path this listing was headed with planeswalker commanders, it in all probability wasn’t exhausting to think about who was in all probability on the high of it. The hottest lands matter commander since he was printed, Lord Windgrace lastly allowed gamers into full Jund colours to take full swings on the prospects of mixing Omnath, Locus of Rage and The Gitrog Monster. Even for those who don’t occur to attract into these powerhouses, nonetheless, it seems that the panther king can do it himself. Ticking up two loyalty for a internet card could be adequate, nevertheless it seems that not solely does the lands deck need lands of their graveyard, so does Windgrace himself for his -3. As for his final, I don’t bear in mind it ever truly mattering, as a result of if a Lord Windgrace stays in play longer than a flip or two, you usually lose to ramp and worth anyhow.

Honorable Mentions

As is custom, when rating by what number of decks a Commander is definitely commanding, I rank the entire listing of them. Luckily, this week’s standards was sufficiently small to take action, so benefit from the different 25 “non-creature” commanders!

11. Mogis, God of Slaughter – 999 Decks
12. Daretti, Scrap Savant – 970
13. Heliod, Sun-Crowned – 843
14. Purphoros, God of the Forge – 780
15. Ephara, God of the Polis – 700
16. Klothys, God of Destiny – 603
17. Purphoros, Bronze-Blooded – 570
18. Will Kenrith & Rowan Kenrith – 549
19. Thassa, Deep-Dwelling – 546
20. Freyalise, Llanowar’s Fury – 544
21. Keranos, God of Storms – 508
22. Athreos, Shroud-Veiled – 443
23. Teferi, Temporal Archmage – 420
24. Iroas, God of Victory – 395
25. Erebos, God of the Dead – 383
26. Jeska, Thrice Reborn – 332
27. Tevesh Szat, Doom of Fools – 298
28. Nahiri, the Lithomancer – 256
29. Thassa, God of the Sea – 245
30. Pharika, God of Affliction – 210
31. Heliod, God of the Sun – 128
32. Nylea, Keen-Eyed – 174
33. Ob Nixilis of the Black Oath – 133
34. Erebos, Bleak-Hearted – 101
35. Nylea, God of the Hunt – 72

The remainder of these apart, nonetheless, I’m positive a couple of us have been silently asking themselves about a few nook circumstances that had been simply exterior our standards for this week:

Flip Enchantments

The Kamigawa cycle of legendary creatures that flip into enchantments was tempting to incorporate right here, particularly on account of their notoriety from together with a banned card within the type of Erayo, Soratami Ascendant. That stated, they only didn’t match the spirit of having the ability to be forged as one other sort of everlasting, fairly remodeling after the actual fact in the identical style as Werewolves.

Legendary Non-Creature Permanents

While not technically commanders, there was many a participant who has tried to rule zero their Genju of the Realm or Legacy Weapon deck. There are barely fewer who’ve tried the identical on account of their love of Parhelion II or Skysovereign, Consul Flagship. That stated, whereas I do totally imagine we’ll see a Vehicle commander in some kind earlier than lengthy, these non-legal variations didn’t actually look like precisely the step in the fitting path I used to be in search of. After all, I’m already breaking one rule simply attempting to have Umori as a companion!

Grand Calculatron

I don’t know why The Grand Calculatron exhibits up as a commander on Scryfall. But on condition that I happen to be an absolutely massive fan of RoboRally, the board recreation by Magic: The Gathering creator Richard Garfield that The Grand Calculatron is predicated on, I hope they by no means repair it.

Nuts and Bolts

There all the time appears to be a little bit of curiosity in how these lists are made (this looks as if a good time to emphasize as soon as once more that they’re primarily based on EDHREC rating, NOT my private opinion…), and individuals are typically shocked that I’m not utilizing any particular knowledge or .json from EDHREC, however fairly simply muddling my means via with some Scryfall knowledge! For your enjoyment/analysis, here is this week’s Scryfall search.

What Do You Think?

And lastly, the place would you wish to see Wizards experiment within the space of commanders that aren’t essentially creatures? Do you just like the Modal Commanders we’re beginning to see out of Kaldheim?

Let us know within the feedback, and we’ll see you on the desk that’s truly not a desk, it’s a flat rock. Or is it?

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