Myth Realized - What if Any Planeswalker Could Be Your Commander? (Blue)

(Tamiyo, the Moon Sage | Art by Lius Lasahido)

They're Blue and Most Are Just One Guy...

The question "What if any planeswalker could be your commander?" is a frequent topic of discussion in the Magic discourse. Some people say it would kill EDH as a format, others say it will do nothing but give more options to an endless pool of commanders. I believe the truth is somewhere in the middle. My name is Nick, and the second installment of Myth Realized will cover blue's planeswalkers, and how they would each ruin - or not ruin - your favorite 100-card singleton format.

A quick disclaimer for this article: a major factor for all these 'walkers is the card Deepglow Skate.

Any 'walker that can be played immediately with this card will be more dangerous than those who cannot. I won't mention it for every 'walker, so I'm getting it out of the way here unless the 'walker has an added benefit to the card.

Jace, Arcane Strategist

This card is not the best to start the list out with, but since this is done alphabetically, here we are. A very lackluster static ability and even an immediate ultimate on this card are not exciting enough to demand the six mana for it.

Jace, Architect of Thought

I am in love. I play this card all the time and it always makes me a problem. This card is hard to kill, gives you a miniature Fact or Fiction, and has an absurd ultimate if you can get to it. In a world where you can cast this as a commander, this has a very good mana cost, and mark my words, it will make you the archenemy after a few games when people see what it can really do. I've noticed three things Magic players really don't like: land destruction, mill, and theft effects. This steals from each opponent at the same time, and even gives you a freebie on the side!

Jace Beleren

Mono-blue Group Hug? Nicknamed by the community as Party Jace, the original blue planeswalker would be an interesting choice over the likes of something akin to Kami of the Crescent Moon. Fun and flavorful, but not too strong.

Jace, Cunning Castaway

Not great as the leader of a deck. To be frank, the only interesting thing I can find about this card is when you combine it with Nicol Bolas, Dragon-God to create copies of himself. The plus ability is not as good as the plethora of enchantment effects that just draw you a card rather than looting. Unless you want one of the least-clothed versions of Jace, then I would keep this one as a castaway.

Jace, Ingenious Mind-Mage

I thought this fella might be the beginnings of a combo deck, so I turned to Commander Spellbook, and it delivered: a straightforward infinite mana combo using the second +1 ability, The Chain Veil, and March of the Machines. Funnily enough, this is already a combo available to another six-mana Jace planeswalker, so it's nothing new, just a surprise factor for your opponents the first time you pull it off.

Jace, Memory Adept

There just aren't big enough numbers on this card. This card does not scale to the deck size of Commander; the only effect you would want to activate is the zero ability, and you can get a better rate for less mana with many other mill cards in the format. There are also easier ways to draw 20 cards than keeping this card alive for three turns in mono-blue, so you'd have to jump the curve to make it meaningful.

Jace, Mirror Mage

As your commander, this Jace has the huge benefit of being cheap and having the ability to scale to the late game. For just two mana, you get a second copy, and you can manage the abilities of both copies to keep them alive for a long time. It doesn't stop your opponents from doing anything, so it's not a good stax piece, but it gives you card selection/advantage, which would be perfect for "draw-go control" without being fully stax-y.

Jace, the Living Guildpact

Yuck. This card is trash in every format it has ever existed in, and I will extend that sentiment to it being your commander. This card is horrendous for four mana, and the only thing useful this card might be able to do is if you can find a scenario to spam use the ultimate of this card to keep your opponents empty-handed with you getting a random seven every turn, and even then, I feel that playing a card that will come up later on and blue wheel spells are much more efficient and effective than this.

Jace, the Mind Sculptor

The man, the myth, the Mind Sculptor. This card is most likely the #1 planeswalker that came to mind when you saw this article’s title. Would Jace, the Mind Sculptor, banned in Standard, banned for a time in Modern, and for a while, the best planeswalker of all time, be as good in Commander if it could helm your deck?

No. I will say it now, this card would be bad even as your commander. Why? Because it's horrible when there are three opponents. People can play Brainstorm already, and the four-mana version of it is not fantastic. This card's just not a powerhouse in EDH. It shows up in just 2% of eligible decks on EDHREC right now, and granted, price and availability may play a role there, but we've seen expensive EDH staples with much higher inclusion rates than that. This is far from a format-defining card.

Jace, Unraveler of Secrets

If you ultimate this card, you win. This a phrase everyone as a Magic player has most likely heard when talking about planeswalkers at some point in their lifetime. Just look at this thing: counter the first spell each turn!? That is a game-ending line of text. Everything you play for the rest of the game now requires two answers. You do get the rest of the table to turn against you, but honestly, what are they going to do to you? I'd play this over the Mind Sculptor as the commander any day, though I'd have to have a really good control deck to protect him.

Jace, Wielder of Mysteries

Ah. In this hypothetical world, we have here another combo card available in the command zone. Most of the combinations with this card are known as of now, but the easiest ones are with Leveler or Paradigm Shift. These allow you to win with the +1 ability of this card and its passive Laboratory Maniac ability. This would be a very solid commander; access to your 'Win the Game' piece in the command zone is problematically powerful.

Kasmina, Enigmatic Mentor

This could be cool as a Wizard tribal commander in mono-blue, although it's not great that this isn't a Wizard herself and wouldn't benefit from all those Wizard buffs and bonuses. It makes Wizard tokens, though! Add in some bonus card filtering and you have a cool commander if you like this character.


If you're trying to win with the card Enter the Infinite, this could do a good impression of it, functioning as a sort of second copy in the command zone if you have a small hand of cards before activating the ultimate. I'm kind of scraping the bottom of the barrel there, though. There are no bottom-of-the-library synergies in mono-blue, and creating one big token is not what you want for six mana. Maybe those tokens could help turn this commander into a 'hand size matters' theme deck with Body of Knowledge and other cards along that line? This one feels like a stretch. Sorry, Mordenkainen.

Mu Yanling

That's a very strong ultimate, but in mono-blue, it might be more of a nuisance than an endgame. This strikes me as a deck built around tons of damage-proc payoffs, from Quietus Spike to Stolen Identity.

Mu Yanling, Celestial Wind

This card isn't even worth playing in dedicated 'flying matters' decks. It suffers from being a planeswalker deck planeswalker. Bad at all points and too expensive. Pass on this version of Mu Yanling.

Mu Yanling, Sky Dancer

Hard to get to the ultimate, but very worth it if you can pull it off. An Island-heavy mono-blue deck with acceleration and some Proliferate strategies built-in will draw an insane number of cards with this ultimate. The major downside is that this card doesn't have very good abilities to help you get to the ultimate. You can't use the downtick when this comes down, and you can only weaken one creature at a time with the +2.

Narset, Parter of Veils

Banned on day zero. It's the Leovold, Emissary of Trest problem all over again. Windfall, Teferi's Puzzle Box, you know the drill. There's nothing more to say about it.

Tamiyo, the Moon Sage

This might be the most difficult card to evaluate in this color. When it's good, it's one of the best things you could be doing. But when it's bad, it's awful. Tapping any permanent and freezing it can stymie some strategies for sure, but only tagging one permanent means you must pick your spots carefully. The ultimate is very good, but only when you combine it with cards that you can use on everyone’s turn. Card draw that's only determined by what your opponents are doing is either great or terrible. It'd be worth trying, but I just don't know how I'd rate it on a strength scale. This card as a commander is both excellent, and garbage. This would be an inconsistently powerful deck.

Teferi, Master of Time

'Annoying' is how I would describe this card if you always had access to it in the command zone. This card didn't necessarily make the splash that everyone expected when it was released, but I think that ability to be used at instant speed would make this very hard to deal with, and ultimately would be a thorn in most people’s sides. I don't personally think it would be bannable, but it would be extremely powerful, and I suspect most people would ask if you had another deck you could pull out instead, please.

Teferi, Timeless Voyager

Bad. This card is bad. Nothing on this card is good, and it's no surprise why: it's from a planeswalker deck. Even the ultimate isn't great! It clears the way for you, but it protects everyone’s creatures from wraths and mass bounce spells! Bad.

Tezzeret, Artifice Master

For five mana, this card does what you want from a planeswalker. It protects itself, it gives you a card advantage, and it has a game-winning ultimate. It might not do any of these things the very best when you compare it to every other 'walker, or even every other commander, but I'm a sucker for a Tezzeret, so I would love to make an artifact-centric deck with the mad metal man at its command.

Tezzeret, Betrayer of Flesh

If you want another blue combo commander that uses artifacts, but you don't want to use the classic Teferi, Temporal Archmage, then here you go! I think there's room for a fun value-engine type of deck here. There are enough riders on these abilities that I think you could avoid most immediate win-the-game combos and just have fun playing metal things, animating random artifacts, and drawing lots of cards.

Tezzeret, Cruel Machinist

Planeswalker deck quality cards strike again! This is just not what you want to do with your mana or your time. Even with the ultimate letting you put your hand onto the battlefield, you can't do anything with those cards in a way that will matter.

Tezzeret the Seeker

Probably an auto-ban again. This isn't a planeswalker in the command zone, it's any artifact in your deck in the command zone. It's Isochron Scepter in the command zone for immediate combo loops. Super linear leader that puts your combo pieces directly into play? Big nope.

Wrap Up

Blue's a great combo color, and I honestly thing it'd have a much easier time than white at getting to those inflated loyalty abilities. Of note, only Narset, Parter of Veils appears in more than 5% of eligible decks on EDHREC, though admittedly, 5% is a very large amount.

So what do you think about blue? How do you think the format would look if any of these 'walkers could also be commanders? Let me know in the comments!

Player and lover of all Magic the Gathering formats. Forged in the fires of Oath of the Gatewatch expeditions. Always down to jam games with anyone and everyone. When not playing Magic I am doing something else equally, if not more nerdy.

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