The best Commander cards in Magic: The Gathering are the ones that are good in nearly every situation, and any deck that plays them gets to benefit from them - whether that’s early on or in the late game. Some Commander cards definitely fit certain playstyles more, but these ones are pretty much guaranteed to be an excellent addition to any deck that can have them.
Best MTG Commander cards 2023
- Sol Ring
- Arcane Signet
- Chaos Warp
- Rhystic Study
- Heroic Intervention
- Swiftfoot Boots
- Swords to Plowshares
- Blasphemous Act
- Demonic Tutor
Commander is widely regarded as not only the most popular MTG format, but also one of the most fun and more accessible ways to play the trading card game. While it does have larger decks than something like Standard or Modern would normally have, only needing one of any card when building your Commander deck generally makes the format more affordable, too.
Each pick below is one of the best MTG Commander cards not just because of their power level, but also because of their ubiquitous nature. They’re not only potent, but easy to slot into a multitude of decks - because rather than serving a specific playstyle, they benefit basically all of them.
1. Sol Ring
The ultimate turn one play
Sol Ring is the best card in Commander, whether you like it or not. This one-mana artifact taps to add two colourless mana to your mana pool. It’s nothing fancy, but playing this on turn one allows you to play a four-cost card on turn two - and it’s rare that such a speedy start to a game doesn’t result in a massive advantage.
The fact that this can go in any deck and have such a huge impact is what makes this the best MTG card for Commander. There are some decks that might prefer something else on turn one but, for its sheer versatility, Sol Ring sits in the top spot.
2. Arcane Signet
The ultimate turn two play
While we’re loath to follow up on one very good artifact with another, Arcane Signet is just that good. This two-mana artifact can tap for one mana of any colour in your commander’s colour identity. While it doesn’t offer the same potential explosivity as Sol Ring, having access to one mana of any colour your deck needs is very hard to beat.
It’s good in just about any Commander deck, but it shines brighter the more colours you’re using. If you’re playing a five-colour deck, this card is basically an essential addition; having access to all five colours of mana on a two-mana artifact makes things far easier to manage.
3. Chaos Warp
Chaos Warp is a three-mana Red instant spell that can be used on your own permanents or an opponent’s, and it really depends on what you need it to do. If you’ve got a small creature you prefer to be something else, it can do that, and if there’s an opposing threat that can’t be destroyed, it can deal with that too.
That’s because it reads: “The owner of target permanent shuffles it into their library, then reveals the top card of their library. If it’s a permanent card, they put it onto the battlefield.”
Sure, it’s a little hard to predict, but that also makes for better Commander games, in our opinion.
4. Rhystic Study
Are you paying for that?
Rhystic Study is an annoying card to play against in Commander. It’s not even really because of the card advantage it offers, or the fact that this three-mana Blue enchantment can come down so early; it’s just because of the trigger.
The card reads: “Whenever an opponent casts a spell, you may draw a card unless that player pays one mana.” This leads to a lot of extra cards, but it results in whoever plays it having to constantly ask if people will be paying one mana to stop them from drawing a card.
If you can’t beat them, you should join them - and you might as well become the annoying player in this case.
5. Heroic Intervention
You’ll be fine
If your Commander deck is built around creatures and you’re sick of them dying, good news: Heroic Intervention is here for you. This card can protect every permanent you control from just about everything bad that could happen to them, and it only costs two mana.
This Green instant grants permanents you control hexproof and indestructible until the end of the turn. That means you can use it to avoid any targeted spell, any board wipes that destroy things instead of exiling them or just use it to avoid losing creatures in a big attack.
6. Swiftfoot Boots
Swiftfoot Boots is a two-mana equipment that often competes with Lightning Greaves, because they both cost two mana.
However, while Lightning Greaves has the advantage of no equip cost, it grants shroud, which stops you from targeting the equipped creature - which can be annoying in Commander decks built around buff spells or just running a lot of equipment cards.
While Swiftfoot Boots costs one mana to equip, it grants hexproof and haste, which means you can continue to cast spells that benefit your creature as you see fit.
7. Swords to Plowshares
The best creature removal in Commander
Targeted removal is important in Commander games, because it allows you to play the game a little more politically - and that’s a big part of the meta-game in any four-player bouts. Swords to Plowshares costs one mana, and this White instant exiles a target creature.
The controller of that creature then gains life equal to its power, which means you can sometimes save yourself with this - or save an ally.
You’re usually going to use it to just get rid of the biggest threat on the board, but the fact that it can be used in other ways really helps the utility of this card in Commander.
8. Blasphemous Act
A one-mana board wipe
Blasphemous Act may well be one of the best board wipes in Magic: The Gathering in general. This nine-mana Red sorcery spell deals 13 damage to every creature on the board. That’s enough to kill the vast majority of things in MTG, but it’s just a shame it costs so much mana.
Wait a second, no it doesn’t. You see, Blasphemous Act actually costs one fewer generic mana for each creature on the battlefield. In short, if there are eight or more creatures in play - and there usually are in multiplayer Commander games - then this spell only costs one mana. Paying one mana to wipe the board is a no-brainer.
9. Demonic Tutor
Whatever you need
Demonic Tutor is a two-mana sorcery that reads: “Search your library for a card, put that card into your hand, then shuffle.” While this card can be cast on turn two to get a turn three play, it’s a card that becomes more and more useful the longer the game goes on… as long as your deck has good cards in it for every situation.
Let’s say, for example, that you’re playing a Red and Black deck, and you find yourself in desperate need of a board wipe. Assuming you have at least three mana, and there are enough creatures in play, you can play Demonic Tutor, put Blasphemous Act into your hand and then cast it, all in the same turn.
You can view Demonic Tutor as a second copy of every single card in your deck - which is innately powerful in a format like Commander where you’re only allowed one copy.
More mana is always good
Finally, we have Farseek. Farseek is a two-mana Green sorcery that allows you to search your library for a Plains, Island, Swamp or Mountain card, and put it into play tapped. It’s easy for newer players to look at this and view it as being the same as Rampant Growth, but this card doesn’t specify basic land type.
What that means, in essence, is that you can go and get one of the many dual lands available in MTG and put that into play. This allows for not only ramping, but exceptional mana-fixing too, which is essential when you’re playing with a lot of colours.
The cost is easy to meet, the ability is powerful and having more land is nearly always a good thing.