In this article, you’ll find some of the most fun commanders from Murders at Karlov Manor. I’m very excited for about this set, as Ravnica is one of my favorite planes. However, I’m tired of the usual guild feuds and Nicol Bolas plots. Thus, having a murder mystery take place sounds like so much fun.
Commander is the main format I personally play so one of my first thoughts is new commanders for my decks. I’m going to go over the most powerful commanders, but also mention fun casual commanders to help casual players.
UPDATE: This article already received its final update on February, 2nd! Even more fun commander have been added.
Yarus, Roar of the Old Gods
Yarus is one of the must fun commanders from Murders at Karlov Manor, and it doesn’t lack in power. You wouldn’t expect red-green to focus on face down creatures, let alone bringing them back from the dead. Yarus rewards an aggressive play style while also creating some fun combos.
For example, you can use Ashcloud Phoenix. If you combine it with a sacrifice outlet and Yarus, you can win the game, if you have more life than your opponents. You can use something like Life Chisel and obscure artifact from the past, that makes sure you’re actually gaining life in this process. Even with some other outlet, you can deal tons of damage and create a bunch of sacrifice triggers.
If you want ideas on how to build a Yarus deck, you should look at my Deadly Disguise Upgrade Guide. That deck is red, green, and white, but you could easily ignore the white cards and find plenty of ideas for your own Yarus deck.
Rakdos, Patron of Chaos
Rakdos is certainly an interesting commander. As a 6/6 with flying and trample, it also opens up the strategy of winning with Commander damage.
Now his ability is helpful against many decks, especially since you pick which opponent is sacrificing the permanents. And the fact that they can’t sacrifice lands or tokens make it a much more difficult decision.
So hopefully he’s drawing you two cards per turn. Given by this point you have around 6 mana, you’ve likely burnt through your hand and need the extra cards to refill.
Senator Peacock is one of my favorite new commanders for Karlov Manor. She’s not overpowered but she can fit several strategies that can be fun to use.
She is best for artifact decks. While there are tons of more powerful blue artifact commanders, such as Urza, Lord High Artificer, she is better if you want to play in a more casual group. And also not be targeted first each game.
She also works with Ninjas. There are 17 blue Ninjas currently but you can add other creatures that trigger abilities with combat damage. The ability to sacrifice artifacts to draw cards and make Ninjas unblockable can make powerful abilities trigger each combat.
Note that this card isn’t the part of the main set, but a part of Ravnica: Clue Edition.
Aurelia, the Law Above
A beast of a red-white commander, she is perfect for any Boros deck. The fact that any player can trigger her ability makes it even more powerful, forcing your opponents to avoid attacking to prevent you from drawing and dealing damage.
Add to that she’s 5 mana for a 4/4 creature with flying, vigilance, and haste and you don’t even need to trigger her abilities. You can just focus on buffing her to swing for Commander damage.
She’ll work well with auras, but I feel equipment would work best since there are tons of low cost creatures that work with equipment and can trigger Aurelia’s abilities. You can also equip the creatures to get some draw, then move equipment over to Aurelia to finish the game with commander damage. Some creature options are:
Alquist Proft, Master Sleuth
Not my favorite commander of the set so far but I feel he can be powerful. Just the fact that you need a lot of mana to make his ability worthwhile is a negative for me, though I feel he can be powerful in the 99 cards for other commanders.
If you’re running him as a commander, he would partner well with artifacts that generate mana. That way you can play a bunch of artifacts, and when you get your commander out you can use all the mana to draw a whole new hand.
Combine that with Unwinding Clock and you could cast spells on your turn, then draw cards and gain life on an opponent’s turn. Keeping tons of mana open for counter spells and other instants.
He is a powerful card to play alongside for Will, Scion of Peace. Whether Alquist or Will are the commander you should put the other in the deck too. Drawing cards and making all those cards cost less can lead to some fun combos.
Judith, Carnage Connoisseur
Judith might be my favorite card so far for this set. Such a fun card for anyone that likes instant and sorceries. The deathtouch can turn simple damage spells like Blazing Volley into board wipes for your opponents only.
You’ll also gain life for all the damage spells, giving Judith a unique role for black-red decks where you can have a deck built around damaging everyone while also gaining life to keep yourself ahead.
And for non-damage spells Judith can create creature tokens to fill your board. You can stock your deck full of cards that draw you cards or destroy permanents with the knowledge each cast also gives you a creature.
I would personally stock Judith with those instant and sorceries plus planeswalkers. If you’re constantly killing creatures and creating tokens, you can then just let planeswalkers get to their ultimate abilities. Jaya Ballard and Liliana, the Last Hope are the first two that come to mind.
Teysa, Opulent Oligarch
Of the new Clue focused commanders, Teysa is my favorite. Creating Clues each turn and creating flying tokens when you them is spectacular.
The negative is you only get one Spirit token per turn. However, you can still sacrifice Clues on opponents’ turns. You can include instant spells and you can leave mana open to cast spells or use clues each turn. With that in mind Teysa would be good for a control deck, stocked with spells that destroy permanents.
The fact the tokens have flying is perfect since you can then use them to attack and gain more Clues.
Voja, Jaws of the Conclave
Voja is similar to his partner [/c]Tolsimir, Midnight’s Light[/c] because they both benefit from controlling Elves and Wolves. I prefer using Voja as a commander because he adds red as a color and more importantly he’s just so much more powerful.
I love that all your creatures get the +1/+1 counters, including the Wolves. And given how both Elves and Wolves are known for being able to generate large number of tokens, you’ll swarm the board with powerful creatures.
Voja works amazingly with Howl of the Night Pack and Kessig Cagebreakers since you’ll draw an absurd number of cards. Even if someone used a card to destroy all creatures, you’ll have a full hand ready to rebuild your board.
Just be careful not to draw your entire deck. I’d include Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre so I can discard it to reshuffle my graveyard back. You can combo him with Fauna Shaman so you search for Ulamog and then discard it to search for another creature.
This card is another one from the Ravnica: Clue Edition set, Commander Mustard is a beast in your Soldier deck. Giving vigilance, trample, and haste to your soldiers are such a powerful combo so you can swing with all your creatures each turn and still maintain blockers.
Honestly, if he only did that he would be on this list. But he also has the ability to make your Soldiers deal damage to defending players even before blockers are declared. Most Soldier decks I’ve seen are token decks, meaning you make your 1/1 tokens deal double damage if unblocked, and the blocked ones still deal damage to your opponents.
Trostani, Three Whispers
Honestly at first I wasn’t excited for this card. But as I thought about it, the fact you can use the abilities on your opponent’s creatures allows for some unique ideas.
I would be terrified to attack when opponent controls a Trostani on the board with some open mana. They can give the defending creatures deathtouch to kill my creatures. Or potentially give my opponent’s creature double strike when they attack me.
As far as using the abilities on my own creatures, it’s mana intensive to use the abilities on multiple creatures but giving big creatures like Ghalta, Stampede Tyrant double strike is a good way to kill a player.
Ghalta has trample, which also works amazingly with deathtouch. Trample means that the attacking creature deals enough damage to blocking creatures to kill them, and then the remaining damage to the defending player. But with deathtouch, one damage is enough to kill a creature no matter how much toughness it has. So that means if a 12/12 with trample and deathtouch is blocked by two creatures, no matter what the stats of those creatures the attacker does one damage to each and then ten to the defending player.
That said, the ability to mess with my opponents is what would make me want to have Trostani as a commander. It can certainly enable fun play patterns. (One more example is the combination of double strike + deathtouch, which can kill any creature.)
Melek, Reforged Researcher
A more casual commander for your Mizzix of the Izmagnus deck. Lowering the cost of one spell per turn is pretty nice but if you can afford to cast a 5 mana commander, you likely have the mana to cast the spell.
That said, I love the idea of being able to win with Commander damage with Melek, especially with red and blue being perfect to fill your graveyard with cards like Windfall. He’ll likely have some solid stats by the time you cast him unless someone exiles your graveyard.
Niv-Mizzet is certainly an unusual commander. I feel it has the potential to be the most powerful commanders in Karlov Manor, yet at the same time its ability is vague and somewhat difficult to build around.
If you decide to build around Niv, you’ll need a variety of 2-color permanents. Any permanent works, so you can focus on enchantments, creatures or any other permanent you like.
I would personally run him with enchantments. They’re more difficult to destroy than creatures, and have a bigger variety compared to artifacts. Some options that spring to mind are:
- Mirari’s Wake
- All ten of the Theros 2-color gods, such as Iroas, God of Victory
- Sythis, Harvest’s Hand
Hexproof from multicolored isn’t the best protection, but it can still be relevant against a wide variety of decks.
The last Clue Commander on the list is Emissary Green. While that’s probably not the most competitive green commander, it is fun and perfect for political players.
Most opponents are going to give you +1/+1 counters, when you have few creatures and Treasure tokens when you have a large board. However, you can also try to convince them to help you if there is a bigger threat on the table. And since you also get a vote, you’re guaranteed to have at least one effect you want most.
Both options benefit from Doubling Season. You can also ramp mana with Gyre Sage and Kami of the Whispered Hopes. Furtheremore, Kodama of the West Tree can get you lands and give your creatures trample. There are a lot of exiting cards you can include if you decide to build around Green.
One negative is that your commander needs to attack each turn for the effect to trigger. But given that you could get at least two Treasure tokens per attack, you can include protection spells like Tyvar’s Stand to make sure it survives. Heroic Intervention also works nicely, but it’s better to save that one for board wipes.
Obscuring Haze is another great alternative, since you’ll at least break even mana wise with the Treasures your commander creates when he attacks.
Anzrag, the Quake-Mole
This list of most fun commanders from Murders at Karlov Manor wouldn’t be complete without the Mole God. The card is just spectacular. Extra combat steps are helpful for aggressive red-green decks, and having them built into a commander can lead to some fun combos.
The best part is that it makes your opponents not want to block, which allows you to kill threaten a kill with Commander damage in at most 3 turns.
You can also activate the ability to force him to be blocked. Now you just need to give Anzrag indestructible with something like Mithril Coat, so you can keep attacking until your opponents run out of creatures. If you give Anzrag trample with something like Rancor, then you can also be dealing damage to your opponents even when blocked.
These aren’t all the commanders in this set, just the ones I feel are powerful or bring a unique strategy.
If I didn’t list your favorite, please comment and let us know! Maybe you found a fun strategy I didn’t think of or that character is your favorite lore wise. I’d love for you to tell us!
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