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MTG: Sneak Attack! – Top Five Rogue Commanders

4 Minute Read
Mar 19 2024

Keep an eye on your wallet while these five Commanders are around. Otherwise, you might lose more than just the game.

Welcome Planeswalkers and Praetors to our ongoing series about the best casual experience in Magic: Commander. For the uninitiated, Commander is a semi-casual format for Magic: the Gathering. You use a deck of 100 cards led by a legendary creature, aka, your Commander.

Aside from basic lands, you are only allowed one copy of each card in the deck. Moreover, you can only include cards in your Commander’s “color identity” or artifacts. Each color and color combo has a unique playstyle and a wealth of mighty generals to lead your deck to victory. is an excellent source for Commander info and can give you ideas on how to build your next Commander deck or tune an existing one.

Rogues are one of the iconic classes in modern RPGs. The stealthy thieves, assassins, and grifters of the fantasy world, these shadowy warriors monitor the shadier parts of the world. In MTG, they usually have great evasion, so sort of theft mechanic, and lots of destroy effects. A tribe of them usually goes crazy fast, and there’s nothing your opponent can do.

Anowyn, the Ruin Thief

A master of theft, Anowyn leads an army of thieves that target your opponent’s minds rather than their wallets. A 2/4 for four, he lacks evasion but serves as a decent anthem effect for your other Rogues. Plus, he’s the face Commander for the Zendikar Rogue deck.

Anowyn really gets nasty when his secondary effect activates. Whenever a Rogue deals damage to one of your opponents, they mill cards equal to the damage dealt. Then, if you snagged at least one creature card, you get to draw a card. This procs separately for each player, so it benefits you to attack all your opponents at once.

Mari, the Killing Quill

Not a Rogue herself, Mari still gives Rogues a nasty buff. While she’s out, any time an opponent’s creature dies, it’s exiled with a hit counter. Not only does this disrupt graveyard strategies, but it also sets up tons of other combos later. But how do you make sure you’re killing off creatures? Well, Mari has you covered there as well.

While she’s on the field, Mari gives all your Assassins, Mercenaries, and Rogues deathtouch. This allows you to make even your smallest creatures deadly blockers, and you’ll be feeding her primary ability. Best of all, though, is when those Rogues hit a player. So long as your opponent has something with a hit counter, you can take one off whenever you deal combat damage to receive a card and two Treasure tokens. The best part is your opponent STILL doesn’t get their creature back. Mari makes sure the things she kills stay dead.

Rilsa Rael, Kingpin

The initiative was an odd mechanic from Baldur’s Gate, similar to the dungeon mechanic but with only one dungeon combined with the monarch. Rilsa is all about finishing the dungeon, and if you do, she has deadly rewards for your creatures. Out of the gate, she’s a 2/5 with deathtouch, which is a nasty statline. However, once the dungeon is done, she’s a lot nastier.

Once your dungeon is done, whenever you attack, you can give a creature deathtouch, +5/+0, first strike, and menace. They get deathtouch whether you’ve completed the dungeon or not, but once it’s done, you turn an unassuming token into a death sentence. If you choose Rilsa herself, you can get a Commander Damage win in no time.


Sygg, River Cutthroat

Sygg is here to ensure everyone has a bad time. At every end step, if an opponent loses three or more life, you get a card. This can prevent players from paying for abilities with life and allow you to get a fast card advantage with damage. Plus, he’s a 1/3 for two, which isn’t a bad value.

Kamiz, Obscura Oculus

Kamiz is one of my favorite cards of all time and makes an excellent Rogue commander. Whenever you attack, one of your attacking creatures connives and becomes unblockable. That’s powerful enough as is, but if you have another attacking creature, then that one gains double strike. You can unleash a pair of nasty threats with little effort while still giving yourself a card advantage with connive.

What do you think of these Commanders?

Author: Clint Lienau
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