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MTG: Apes, Together, STRONG! – Top Ape Commanders

3 Minute Read
May 27 2024

It’s a good thing MTG takes place in a Multiverse because we’ve already seen what Apes did to the last planet they set their sights on.

Welcome Planeswalkers and Praetors to our ongoing series about the best casual experience in Magic: Commander.

Apes are not a varied group in Magic lore. What few Apes HAVE risen to Legendary level are either King Kong-sized beasts or tiny, amusing Monkeys (which I know aren’t apes, don’t at me). However, they’re still a lot of fun to put on the table and can get a little bananas if left to their own devices. You might not win any major tournaments, but you’ll certainly have a good time running these hairy champions.

Kibo, Uktabi Prince

The only entry on this list that really benefits Apes, Kibo is a fascinating Group Hug Commander. He gives out healing Banana tokens that provide mana and life, but every time an opponent loses an artifact, all your Apes and Monkeys get bigger. But you still don’t want to give your opponent ramp, right? Well, whenever Kibo attacks, they HAVE to sacrifice an artifact. Do they gain the two life from the Banana but then potentially lose their Sol Ring, or do they throw away life and ramp? Either way, you win.

Kogla and Yidaro

It’s not really an Ape Commander if you aren’t chucking things at your opponent, even if that thing is the Commander itself. Kogla and Yidaro have a fun suite of abilities, turning into living bullets that either hit your opponent’s face or one of their favorite creatures. If you can somehow get the beasties into your hand, then you can start a cycle of blowing up your opponent’s entire board of artifacts and enchantments. These gents are probably better in the 99, but they make a decent face-check piece as well.

Grunn, the Lonely King

One thing Apes love to do is blow themselves up to wreck your opponent’s artifacts. Grunn doesn’t care though; he’s stronger on his own. He can potentially hit the field as a 10/10, and if he attacks alone, you can double his power. Give him just a tiny boost, and he’s instant player removal.

What do you think of these Commanders?

What is 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, 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.


Author: Clint Lienau
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