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Pojo's Magic The Gathering
Card of the Day

Daily Since November 2001!

Commandeer
Image from Wizards.com

Commandeer
- Coldsnap

Reviewed Nov. 3, 2016

Constructed: 4
Casual: 4
Limited: 3
Multiplayer: 4
Commander [EDH]: 4.5

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale:
1 - Horrible  3 - Average.  5 - Awesome

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Card of the Day Reviews 


David Fanany

Player since 1995

Commandeer
 
Coldsnap featured a cycle of five cards that alluded to Alliance's famous "free spells" (the ones headlined by Force of Will), with a higher cost but an even bigger effect. Commandeer attracted the most attention of the cycle at first, firstly because its wording is so much broader than the likes of Imp's Mischief or Redirect, and secondly because Lorwyn brought planeswalkers soon after. Despite depicting a person, planeswalkers are valid targets for Commandeer, and stealing your opponent's can sometimes completely mess up their gameplan. That is perhaps the best use for it even now, as the stable has grown even larger and (on average) more powerful - many decks love to cast Nicol Bolas or Elspeth, while not being that well prepared to face them themselves.
 
Constructed: 4/5
Casual: 4/5
Limited: 4/5
Multiplayer: 4/5
EDH/Commander: 4/5
James H. Commandeer (11/3)
 
The oddball Coldsnap brought back several homages to the original Ice Age and Alliances, with one such homage being a cycle of "pitch spells". Instead of paying the absurdly high mana cost, you could exile two cards from your hand of that spell's color. Blue got Commandeer, which is a far scarier card than it might look at first.
 
The cost is high, whether you're looking at the nigh-uncastable mana cost or doing a three-for-one trade of cards. It's limited as well, unable to take scary creatures that might threaten to make your life rough. What Commandeer does, though, is extremely powerful; instead of merely saying "no", you say “nice spell; I think I'll take it". Against symmetrical effects (board wipes), it's less useful, but it's back-breaking against massive spells (like Sphinx's Revelation), against massive enchantments or artifacts, and  against planeswalkers (yes, this steals planeswalkers).
 
This is an imperfect answer, and its steep cost makes it a bit cumbersome at times, but Commandeer is a very threatening card in formats where it can show up. If you're on blue in Modern and have a poor match-up against, say, Tron, this might help you win the war in those games.
 
Constructed: 4
Casual: 4
Limited: 2
Multiplayer: 4
Commander: 5

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