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MTG - Magic Defined - Commander: What is the Commander format in Magic: The Gathering?

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Is it Worth it to buy a 2013 Commander deck: http://youtu.be/-LpGlqBR5Xc Introduction to Commander Deck Construction: http://youtu.be/Gbphr57jysI Music Courtesy Of: "Deliberate Thought" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/
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Text Comments (137)
Devin Cruz (2 days ago)
Question, when in the command zone do the commander's ability trigger?
Dragan Milojevic (1 month ago)
cool
Anime King (1 month ago)
This is retarded. This is just like Arcane and I didn't like that either. Arcane is a style we played before school with limited time rules were simple. Decks followed standard rules but hand size was 15, you drew 3 and you can play all mana from your hand. If the idea of commander is to get the large costing creatures out just play arcane you'll get every card you want and all the mana you want.
Peter (3 months ago)
This video needs an update Prof! :)
Dorian McCarthy (3 months ago)
Two players IS multiplayer. Also, try to stop speaking so patronizingly as though we are retarded two year olds.
Oleksii Mozgovyi (4 months ago)
This Sunday will play my first Commander deck. Thanks for the video, it is very informative and doesn't have useless information.
TheRealSpellstar (5 months ago)
should probably remove this video since it has outdated rules
Bastien Clarke (10 months ago)
Thanks
Urnils (10 months ago)
Im like hey i got that card! https://youtu.be/o2n6rIzIA6A?t=59s Arcades Sabboth! what a coincidence!
Gabriel Wright (1 year ago)
so player starts at 40 life, but if dealt 21 damage they lose.... So doesn't that mean they have 21 life?
MCNinja (10 months ago)
Gabriel Wright No, 21 life from an attacking commander (abilities don’t count)
AlanGaming (1 year ago)
Thromok, The Insatiable I'm wanting to build a cheap token deck for EDH however I'm not sure how to go about it. Any suggestions?
Gene Russell (1 year ago)
Hey professor. Wondering why there aren't more different legal mtg formats out there. I play both modem and edh, but they seem like extremes of a continuum. Like it seems like back in the 80s when mtg began 60 cards 4 copies max was a bit of an arbitrary rule? Why not have a format somewhere in the middle like 75 card min, max 2 cards that are the same, or 70-3, 60-2.. etc... Seems like this middle ground would provide more exciting and varied game play. Again nobody seems to question this really old 60 card rule. Maybe you could make a video on this. Ty 🙂
shadow rush (1 year ago)
you should do deck reviews on TappedOut.net and give your feedback on several decks that players have made.
Gabriel Shepard (1 year ago)
Boop, 1k likes
M Balazs (1 year ago)
thx was wery usefule
Izaiah Coronado (1 year ago)
i still dont get it...
Daniel Coert (1 year ago)
Please do a Deck-Tech for partner commanders Tana-the Bloodsower and Ravos
JasonBFleece (1 year ago)
What if my Commander gets shuffles into my deck?
You can choose to place it back in the Command Zone instead.
UndertaleSkeleBros (1 year ago)
just to note, the professors words are not law
question professor i know its an old video but what about flip cards? ex. Archangel Avacyn is it boros?
Inferno Supreme (1 year ago)
Pink Peacock Belated reply but yes it is boros as the flip side has a red colour identity
Arek Prokopczyk (1 year ago)
update: partial Paris Mulligan has changed to normal Mulligan rule
Scho0rschi (1 year ago)
In my opinion, commander is the best format, because you have only one copy of each card in a 100 card deck! 60 card decks full of 4 copies of each card, you might as well play with only 10 different cards.....boooring.
Milo Maher (4 months ago)
Sean Tomlinson a mono color deck with 24 of the same land could contain 10 different cards :)
Sean Tomlinson (11 months ago)
*15 not 10, but this is still an excellent point!
Matthew Geary (2 years ago)
Important new rule: all planeswalker cards can also be your commander. and you can have two commanders if both have the partner ability
Nanofuture87 (1 year ago)
Only planeswalkers that specifically say that they can be a commander can be a commander (e.g. Nahiri, the Lithomancer).
Ben S (2 years ago)
Edit needed: off color mana produced is no longer converted into colorless, change made on release of Oath of the Gatewatch. edit, see same has been said in older comments
metalsabatico (2 years ago)
best format
Bowen Beebe (2 years ago)
the Mulligan rule you said is wrong the first one is free so if u put back 4 u get to draw 4 but if u do it again u must shuffle back your hole hand and draw 6
Bowen Beebe (2 years ago)
aaaaaa
Kaloshen (2 years ago)
That is a relatively new rule, Bowen. He wasn't wrong at the time.
Matthew Geary (2 years ago)
Thank you. All of your videos are thorough and detailed. Now I fully understand the basics of Commander. Keep up the great work!
Trenton Wise (2 years ago)
Can you do a Thelon of Havenwood edh deck tech
CrystalblueMage (2 years ago)
The "other colors become colorless" rule is removed now. To not abuse it for the new "need colorless" spells. On the positive side, you can now cast "stolen spells" that require these colors.
Russell (1 year ago)
So that's how Sen Triplets works with color fixing now?
Tyler Efird (2 years ago)
you should do an omnath, locus of rage edh/commander
TheAudioInjection (3 years ago)
Wow, this clears a lot up! I'm new to Magic and heard people talk about the "one hundred card commander decks" and I thought wow that sounds TERRIBLE and expensive! But the fact that you can only have 1 of any individual card, aside from basic lands makes it much more viable. Now I'd actually consider building a commander deck! Thanks, Tolarian!
M-Ditzy Doo (3 years ago)
And then not even a year later the rules were changed. Ain't that a peach? XD
Ernesto Loza (10 months ago)
A peach is a fruit.
M-Ditzy Doo (3 years ago)
Considering everyone would run things that shove commanders back into the deck, myself included, it seems to be more about rule consistency.  I mean, having access to your commander is like a third of the point of the format.  And commander tax is still a valid concern, if someone keeps blowing up your leader, you simply aren't gonna be able to keep paying for it.  It's not that there aren't any anti-commander strategies, there are just less of them.  I.E., control decks can still lockdown a commander, it just means people run a little less 'commander-screw' cards and more general purpose creature screw cards.
Adam Jackson (3 years ago)
+M-Ditzy Doo that seems stupid and unchallenging, it should be just back to the hand, causing you to care for your commander, and protect it instead of going meh, I can pay for it
M-Ditzy Doo (3 years ago)
The tuck rule is the notable one, as now if your commander would go to your hand, deck, graveyard, or exile from anywhere you can send it back to the command zone instead, which prevents things like shoving someone's commander back in their deck or bouncing it then wheeling their hand away to get rid of it if they choose.  There are still anti-commander options like Nevermore, counterspells, restrictive enchantments, or my personal favorite flat out taking control of it, but it's now harder to keep people from using their commanders.  Which to be fair, is probably healthier for the format overall since it's kind of a big point of the format.  Not the only point, as I quite enjoy the variety a singleton format brings to each game, but still a pretty big one.
Adam Jackson (3 years ago)
+M-Ditzy Doo which ones?
XservetaX (3 years ago)
What is your opinion on using Numot, the Devastator as a commander and building a deck based on destruction of lands and library? I hear a lot of negative responses when people see my deck build. Is it really such a terrible playstyle? Thank you for all your videos you post. I watch all of them whenever I get the chance and your advice is extremely useful and well wanted.
LimeBlue07 (3 years ago)
does commander rotate???????
GM Freeman (2 years ago)
+Neon Doodles No.
Alexander Roberts (3 years ago)
Is cromat an expendable commander
T Daves (3 years ago)
You should do one on tiny leader
Andrew Snorlaxxx (3 years ago)
This might seem random, but if I use a caves of kolios for black/white mana, must I pay 1 life? Sry im new to mtg.
am not spam bot llc. (3 years ago)
Yep.
Peterson Hang (4 years ago)
In this format am I allowed to have a Jace, Architect of thought and a Jace, the Living guildpact or am I just allowed to have only one Jace period?
Papa Jay (3 years ago)
because whilst yes they are both Jace, they also have different sub names making them 2 different Jace cards, so yes you may have one of each Jace in your commander deck
+Peterson Hang You can put 1 of each in your deck.
TheZombieProfessor (4 years ago)
Keep these definition videos coming. I just started playing commander a few weeks ago. This info is invaluable for someone trying a new format. What about dual headed something or three versus three games? 
SkylandersFamily (4 years ago)
Three Headed Giant!
Mike Gallagher (4 years ago)
We have how to build commander and sealed decks. Can we get standard/ modern/ other 60 card formats as well? Many magic the gathering players seem to be asking this in your comments
Jonathan Shaw (2 years ago)
+Marc Gallachobar I bid thee farewell
Mike Gallagher (2 years ago)
Ah yes, the ol' sarcastic comment replied almost two years late, gets 'em every time.
Jonathan Shaw (2 years ago)
ok so you have 60 cards varying from lands to non lands and you build a deck that can have up to four copies of a non basic land or non land card.
husk1184 (4 years ago)
Also, rules text (example : Extort ) dont count towards color identity.
purraj101 (4 years ago)
would you consider doing a video regarding CUBE? how to  build one, key staples, suggestions for a pauper cube, interesting cube lists/ setups, etc. ? I love your videos and find them very informative and would love to hear your thoughts on this.
Adolfo Cabrera Schmidt (4 years ago)
2:39 I just lost the game.
Jose Saldias (4 years ago)
i have an idea for your channel, how can we talk about it? From Chile
joe bo (4 years ago)
Everything I needed to know thank you
Omar Diaz (4 years ago)
I saw a picture of "is buying a commander deck worth it" with the commander 2014 set on it, not the commander set 2013. I looked all over your channel and couldn't find that video.
Mike Gallagher (4 years ago)
coming soon
Raymond Willis (4 years ago)
Wow, your videos are awesome. As a fairly new player to Magic I found this particular video very informative. I am still somewhat confused by rules regarding the activation and interaction between cards. For example, what times can I activate my creatures "tap" ability? When two creatures block is the damage total applied all at once or is there a certain order? Can you do some videos covering the more obscure mechanics of the game? I would also love to see some more $20 budget decks! Again thank you for all the wonderful videos, can't wait to watch them all.
darel calida (4 years ago)
Can you show us a video about how sticky the dragon shield sleeves get compared to other sticky glossy sleeves. Thanks :) 
Gus magana (4 years ago)
I would enjoy to see what decks you are playing.
fyiicheckforspies (4 years ago)
Small detail but you "only" need to deal 10 poison damage to win in commander too. Thankfully no one in my playgroup has made a Skithiryx deck yet...
Robert Randolph (4 years ago)
I have a skittles deck!
Blizzyyy (4 years ago)
You accidentally caps O in WOrth in the description :P
Gabriel Tomes (4 years ago)
hello Tolarian Community College. i love you videos i watch them every day. I am 13 years of age i got into mtg 5 month a go, i have very good cards i try as hard as i can to make money to get these cards my favorite colors are black green combine i have a deck with good cards. but i rarely beet my friends  i am allways losing i dont under stand i watch all you videos to build decks and i still cant get it. please tell me what i can do to fix that???
William Wilcox (3 years ago)
Having all of the best cards doesn't ensure victory. Card synergy and good mana curve as well as your mana base are crucial. If you post a decklist, I'm sure someone here (myself or the Professor included) would be happy to assist in recommending changes.
Gabriel Tomes (4 years ago)
i play just 60 card casual
Cody C. (4 years ago)
well what format do you play? standard? modern? tabletop? edh?
Cicsero (4 years ago)
Well I'm glad I know what your next video is going to be considering I can't click the link at the end. Can't wait for it.
klone13 (4 years ago)
Can't it only be 21 points of combat dmg?
+Speaker of the - Yep, ah the danger of omission for only a single word.  Must be COMBAT damage.
Justin Chow (4 years ago)
21 points of *combat* damage by Commander. Also would have been helpful to say that fetchlands are colorless. This has come up a couple of times because players are adding to their decks due to availability. Also I'm going to guess that C14 is not a good buy. Most of the singles are down to a reasonable price range, and there's probably a better way to spend that $35.
TheAtomicBrothers (4 years ago)
Hey Tolarian, I don't know if it was WOrth telling you this but your description should be revised. It will be WOrth your time ;) Also can you make a video on the new Commander 2014 set?
TheAtomicBrothers (4 years ago)
Ok, regard my question.
paper (4 years ago)
I want to join Modern and EDH currently, but I am a new player with a limited supply of cash and cards. I would like to spend a minimal cost for at least a tier II deck, closer to $15-20.
Joel Turley (4 years ago)
Depending on your playgroup you might get away with that for commander but it's highly unlikely. If the other people are in a similar position you can get away with it. For modern you might want to see if you can get anyone to play pauper instead. It's extremely cheap and rewarding.
Robert Randolph (4 years ago)
I would say that this is near impossible. You won't really be getting a tier 2 deck in any format with that money
D R (4 years ago)
I don't think that's possible at all. 
You should adress just a little about the differences between the French format of EDH and the Regular (or Wizards) format.
Cody C. (4 years ago)
+Глеб Лысаков you can still tuck generals but you can opt to put it back in the command zone. other than that only rules that are different are ban list, 30 life (not 40) an its best of 3
Sean, the French banlist is more focused in helping the duel 2x instead of the multiplayer. One example is the artifacts banned like Sol Ring, Mana Crypt, Mana Vault etc, that on the multiplayer are okay, but in a duel can grant a huge advantage for the player who plays it first (and well, the French List is more focused in winning of just one opponent, so the players could exploit it a lot).
+Sean Riley Differnt ban-lists, no tucking in French Duel
Sean Riley (4 years ago)
I'm curious about this! What are the differences?
mahomy1000 (4 years ago)
Could you do a product review on the "Face the Hydra", "Battle the Horde" and "Defeat a God" challenge decks from the Theros block? they are decks that you can duel against, by yourself, or with a friend. I like the concept of it, but I wonder if it's anygood, for casual players at least.
Jean-Luc Belous (4 years ago)
can you still have any number of Relentless Rats or Shadowborn Apostles in a commander deck?
DARK DRAKONIS (4 years ago)
wow... this was quite the BEST info ive seen yet !!! now i fully know how to play :D THANKS !!!!
Thyeggman (4 years ago)
I feel that it's super relevant to mention that in multiplayer games, each player gets one free mulligan of whatever type has been agreed upon.  In your definition you made it sound like when using partial Paris rules, you MUST draw one fewer.  I've never played this way in multiplayer, I've always drawn the same amount for the first partial mulligan.  Nice primer, though!
Sean Riley (4 years ago)
By the official rules committee recommendations, no free mulligan. I agree it's common though.
So what about a planeswalker like Chandra?  Use her +1 ability 21 times and you win?
gameninja44 (4 years ago)
So... the planeswalkers on the front of the boxes... are those the commanders because I thought only legendary creatures were allowed to be commanders
Fr492001 (4 years ago)
Yes they are. Wizards added that rule in their Commander ruleset. if you look on the bottom of them they say they can be used as Commanders
mythicmtgtech (4 years ago)
Well done EDH / Commander 101. 
Dkashu (4 years ago)
*21 points of combat damage If it were any type of damage Nekusar would be OP and I'd love that. But it's not :(
Azerim YTube (1 year ago)
The video is quite outdated overall - the mulligan has changed and you now can produce mana of any color.
+Dkashu Yep, I left out that all important word COMBAT.
Matthew Rodriguez (4 years ago)
The 21 commander damage must be combat damage. you didnt specify 
Charles Dicus (4 years ago)
You should do basic drafting videos on how to draft and what colors to draft
Dracina (4 years ago)
Would you perhaps consider making a video about some of the Magic lore? I know there are several novels out but most are out of print. Where would you recommend players look who are curious about the story behind the game, both old and new sets?
BurningLanguages (4 years ago)
How interesting :). I love learning about this game.
Crimson Vulpes (4 years ago)
remember when Commander was a casual format? it's crazy how competitively people play Commander...
Mike Gallagher (4 years ago)
Remember when [ANYTHING] was casual? It's crazy how much competitive people ruin [EVERYTHING] for the people who want to do [ANYTHING] causally.  fill in the blanks. cry.  
anythingbryan (4 years ago)
+Fr492001 agreed, that's why I dont play at my shop either.
Fr492001 (4 years ago)
+BassB23 Everyone at my store plays it competetive now. Its why I hate EDH.
QUAD9s (4 years ago)
Hmmm, as much Commander as I have played, I have never used the partial-paris mulligan. I will have to bring that up next time I play. Thanks for another great video.
MadStyxx (4 years ago)
Relevant information that was left out: Only 'combat' damage dealt by a commander to a player is counted as Commander Damage.
+MadStyxx Yep, I left out that all important word COMBAT.
Cody Avdek (4 years ago)
Important note: Color identity does not apply to reminder text, so you can play extort cards in your mono white or mono black decks
Miron Liu (4 years ago)
meh, it wasn't too epic but I got a Firemane avenger as my rare and a foil dimir guildgate so got back 4 dollars in card value. All in all not bad! pretty ok pulls from gatecrash i guess.
Miron Liu (4 years ago)
aww yeah! I knew it! Thanks, you just helped me win a booster pack in a bet!
Fzznlggr (4 years ago)
Awesome Explanation, I was always too lazy to read about what is commander on the net. Now i´m well informed. Thanks, again!
Cryptic4 (4 years ago)
I have 2 single sleeved commander decks that need boxes, and since i happen to like the oversized cards, and my brother plays planechase, being able to store those cards with the decks is reasonably important. What would you recommend for deckbox options? The Pro Tower Deck box was in one of your reviews, where you said it could not hold a second deck, and at 20 bucks a pop buying 2 is a bit pricy. I saw some of those old Ultra Pro Magic Commander deck boxes, which at half the price are tempting but they look rather....well crap. Have you done a review or those ultra pro commander boxes or what would you recommend?
anythingbryan (4 years ago)
+anythingbryan *there
anythingbryan (4 years ago)
The ultra-pro commander boxes weren't bad. The Velcro of course was an issue and their seems to be a bit of wasted space. I have found that the 100+ pro deck box will hold a single sleeved edh deck with no problem but not a double sleeved one. I would suggest going that route and using the carboard deck box they give with the new edh decks for the oversized since you cant do anything with it anyways.
Owen D (4 years ago)
I know that Commander is called EDH (Elder Dragon Highlander) and you've said one of your favorite formats is Highlander. So I got a little confused. Is there a difference between Commander and Highlander or are they the same?
The Radical Larry (4 years ago)
+Tolarian Community College Hey Professor, do you plan on making a video reviewing sleeves from Ultimate Guard?
+Matheus Eichelberger Yeah, another great thing about Highlander is you actually can sit down and get a competitive game, and one that doesn't last 5 hours! It's such an amazing format.  The point list is smart solution to keep some of the power in check.
Matheus Eichelberger (4 years ago)
And Highlander is a competitive 1vs1 format, where you start with 20 life points. And most of them use a points list to avoid people from playing all the broken, overpowered cards there are.
Ben Holmes (4 years ago)
+TemporalMeteor Right you are. I assumed EDH and H were the same thing.
TemporalMeteor (4 years ago)
+Ben Holmes no they aren't?? Highlander is a singleton format where you have 100 cards. Edh is a version of highlander where you have a commander and additional rules placed on construction. 
Cerialeater01 (4 years ago)
Sensei, i can't decide on something, do i want to put my legacy dredge and modern tron in my necronomicon leifkicker... or do i wanna put my oops all spells and my dredge deck in it?
Mystical Potato (4 years ago)
Yeeees, I wanted this video xD Keep up the amazing work! By the way, wht is your name? I dont recall you telling wht your name is, maybe you have told us but I don't remember. If you feel that it is too personal it's ok, just keep up the good work :))
Dank Mememan (4 years ago)
Yay! More EDH!

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