All of the cards for Magic: The Gathering’s latest product – Commander 2018 – have been spoiled and there are some seriously powerful cards in this set. Looking past the plethora of needed reprints, there are some spicy new cards that will certainly define entire matches and decks. Now that the full list of cards have been revealed, we poured over every single one and picked out the best ones from the new multiplayer set.
Keep in mind we will not be including reprints in this list. When selecting the cards we decided to not focus on what would work in a competitive commander deck since those lists are typically very strict and extremely optimized. Remember, our selection does not mean that the other cards are bad, simply that these are some of the best in the set.
Commander is all about creativity so there may be a card we don’t list that fits perfectly for your deck. We are focusing on versatile cards and ones that embody the spirit of the format.
Here are the 11 best Commander 2018 cards:
(Author’s Note: This list is in no particular order)
1. Entreat the Dead
The first black card to ever feature the Miracle mechanic is also an extremely strong recursion spell. Being able to draw this card and instantly resurrect an entire army of enemies is exceptionally powerful. Since X doesn’t factor the mana cost of the creature, players can use Entreat the Dead to bring back powerful and game-shaping cards like Jin-Gitaxias, Core Augur. This will become a staple in any type of graveyard or creature-based deck in black.
2. Ever-Watching Threshold
Who doesn’t love drawing cards? Ever-Watching Threshold allows players to draw a card whenever an opponent attacks them or a planeswalker they control. This is quite powerful – especially if your meta is full of aggro decks. While this card won’t directly protect you, it’s low mana cost can easily deter early game aggression.
This can certainly fit in most control decks and any type of “pillow fort” strategy. However, this card is very much dependant on your playgroups meta so make sure to only slot this card in if there are a lot of aggressive decks.
3. Varina, Lich Queen
Zombies are one of the most popular tribes in all of Commander, so any time they get a new general, players will take an interest. Despite the underwhelming collection of white zombies, Varina is an amazing commander. One of the biggest problems with zombie decks is you can easily dump your hand, get wiped, and have nothing left to play for a few turns. Varina circumnavigates this by letting players draw a ton of cards.
Even though the discard effect neuters some of this creature’s potency, you can easily use this to your advantage. Given how many resurrect effects there are in black, Varina is great for filter through your deck and loading your graveyard full of creatures. Expect to see a lot of this commander after the deck’s release.
4. Nesting Dragon
This is a surprisingly powerful card in the right deck. While Nesting Dragon won’t make a ton of waves in a mono-red list, he is very strong in any deck that uses Fetch Lands or any strategy revolving around putting out multiple lands a turn. Not only does this provide you with a consistent stream of blockers, but it discourages attacks from your foes.
Nesting Dragon’s tokens are also a great way to counter board wipes since you’ll have a ton of dragons left over after the boards been cleared. If you aren’t grabbing the Nature’s Vengeance Commander deck, at least pick this card up.
5. Tawnos, Urza’s Apprentice
There are a fair amount of popular artifact commanders, but Tawnos might be the best in Red/Blue. With a cheap casting cost and boasting Haste, Tawnos can come into play and instantly have an impact on the game. Copying either a trigger or activated ability of an artifact is very strong.
Given how broad this ability is, Thawnos can work with both a combo or aggro artifact strategy. There are a ton of cards like Paradox Engine, Hedron Archive, and Kuldotha Forgemaster that greatly benefit from Tawnos’ ability. His sheer versatility and power make Tawnos one of the best generals in Commander 2018.
6. Sower of Discord
Sower of Discord might appear underwhelming at first, but it’s a perfect political card. Not only does this demon have a big body and evasion, but it can warp entire games by itself. If you are getting focused early on, drop this card and suddenly attacks aren’t terribly profitable. On the other hand, you can put this on two players when everyone’s life is low and kill two birds with one stone. Sure, Sower of Discord isn’t a terribly competitive card, but it’s certainly one of the coolest ideas in Commander 2018.
7. Ravenous Slime
Ravenous Slime is just a fantastic card that has a lot going for it. Not only can it exile opponent’s creature cards, but the slime gets stronger with every death. There’s also a nice bit of evasion to help you push some damage through, however, the best part is the slime doesn’t affect you.
Since graveyard hate is always important in Commander, having a card like Ravenous Slime is critical to your victory. Since you don’t need to invest in any additional mana once it’s cast, the slime can just sit on the board and pick away at a foe’s graveyard.
8. Estrid’s Invocation
At the time of writing this, Copy Enchantment is an eight dollar card that is the same mana cost and lacks the punch of Estrid’s Invocation. Not only can you copy any enchantment you control, but this card flickers itself when you need to duplicate a different enchantment. Imagine simply copying cards like Aura Shards or Grasp of Fate. Estrid’s Invocation has a ton of flexibility and can work in any type of enchantment-themed deck. Make sure to grab a copy when this set releases in August.
9. Saheeli’s Directive
It’s Genesis Wave for artifacts, do we need to say anything else? Getting free artifacts is always nice, but there’s no downside to Saheeli’s Directive. You will simply get a ton of artifacts for free and in most cases that will win you the game. The addition of Improvise to help cast the spell only makes this card better. This will become a must include card for any artifact deck that has the color red in it. Plus, the card only costs around two dollars right now which is a great value.
10. Lord Windgrace
Compared to the other Planeswalker commanders from this set, Lord Windgrace is head and shoulders above the competition. Jund has desperately needed a strong general that can helm a land themed deck. It’s fantastic to have a commander that can include all of the amazing land-focused spells. Looking at Windgrace, his +2 ability is a decent draw spell that lets you put lands into your graveyard.
His -3 can be a powerful ramp spell and it’s important to note that this targets any land – not just basics. This means you can use cards like Stripmine to quickly pick apart your foes land base. Finally, Windgrace’s ultimate is decent, but you are really using him for the utility abilities. If you’re looking to build a land deck in these colors then Windgrace is a perfect choice.
11. Treasure Nabber
Treasure Nabber is nuts. This is by far the best card in Commander 2018 and it will see play in a myriad of different decks. What makes this card great is it’s useful for all stages of the game. Drop him early on and temporarily steal another player’s ramp. In the late game, Treasure Nabber can halt entire combos and give you some breathing room.
For those wanting to be a bit meaner, you can always sacrifice the artifact you steal. The art and flavor text is also wonderful, which is always nice. If you are going to get any card from Commander 2018 it should be Treasure Nabber.