Cryptic Command


Format Legality
Arena [BETA] Legal
Noble Legal
Leviathan Legal
Magic Duels Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Vintage Legal
Modern Legal
Casual Legal
Pauper EDH Legal
Vanguard Legal
Legacy Legal
Archenemy Legal
Planechase Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Unformat Legal
Pauper Legal
Commander / EDH Legal

Printings View all

Set Rarity
Iconic Masters (IMA) Rare
Masterpiece Series: Amonkhet Invocations (AKHMPS) Common
Modern Masters 2015 Edition (MM2) Rare
Modern Masters (MMA) Rare
Lorwyn (LRW) Rare
Promo Set (000) Rare

Combos Browse all

Cryptic Command


Choose two —

  • Counter target spell.

  • Return target permanent to its owner's hand.

  • Tap all creatures your opponents control.

  • Draw a card.

Price & Acquistion Set Price Alerts





Have (45) ThatJaceWannabe , prete182 , Nemesis , tangrams , TehDelta , TheDuggernaught , SoggyGecko , ironax , dexxter7 , HydraOoze , jamesesdad , DruneGrey , Spinalripper , Kiortio , Azdranax , kaboomeow , awalloftext , Char-You , cryptoplasm , Vasbear1 , jstn.mrrtt , zachi , CampbellStev , RobbyFoxfur , Mortiferus_Rosa , rebelteddybear , metlguy , gildan_bladeborn , jwitzleben , Dredgar , Archegos , Skulldrey , gosora , Riku580 , kpral , admizell , Harashiohorn , Fineontheoutside , seajay02 , XxCataclysmiCxX , ExaByteOctopus , Randomdeath , itheoryz , Laertesss , silvereh
Want (98) Nerubian , evilmoses , jbriedis , snigerbamsen , Ashy , zenroc , telepathyoverdrive , B0effe , kovellen , DecibelGrinder , Facecheck , CoolBeansBrattah , 1337_Nerd , essex0619 , ASCLEPIUS , xpsychovampx , GS10 , grav0165 , Dannyel , Purplemandown , mafmatician , Zyphilius , MeteoricChimera , Serfax , rizzenkampf , Chaospowers , CrunchyPelvis , Sulla20XX , Amazements , CrotchRocket , imwheelchairbound , Dadaman11 , sleepy104 , LotusPhi , jeremy3036 , bmorri9 , JGMFC , VosslerX , Azdranax , Oloro_Magic , Slowgod , LuckMisesack , gamerhat , LaKU , HelixSnapHelix , filipaco , sraid , Markwiz , QuackMesa , Dawnsly , Mousemke , MenacingSailboat , undertheglass85 , C4rnif3X , midbrain , kvfd1719 , ryuzaki32667 , Gryffix , LockonHaro , harold21 , squee_goblin_nabob , o2x7 , Xathrid_ , uhore , KINGofORESKOS , tripledecker , Morbidtooth , CarlyRaeJepsenMTG , Chill_Casual , LordBlackblade , swarlelion , Shotgunbunny , afeuling , jamesesdad , Alucard2121 , buildingadeck , ArminiusD , mango_channel , Xikitten123 , Crow_Of_The_Void , MasterRoach117 , jtaddeo , FuneralofGod , Clones16 , Forward_to_Dawn , Georgez96 , Red_Feathers , Wintermoon , Gobblemeister , jp262 , AgentCrazyDiamond , obitus , m-d-an , VoteNixon2016 , Duct-Tape-Guardian , BladeMasta220 , Big-Foot , bburt17

Recent Decks

Cryptic Command Discussion

DeviousPenguin666 on A Nice Pile of Cards

10 hours ago

Saljen thanks for the comment! I have been a little bit on the fence about him, but what would you recommend replacing him with (Keeping price of card in mind)? Maybe Gideon, Ally of Zendikar or Tamiyo, Field Researcher? I could just play another Cryptic Command, but I'd rather not have to buy three...

RingweMakil on Ravaging Command

3 days ago

Nathanaiel Field of Ruin is an absolute must-have in this format, I fear. Any reactive or midrange deck that is not utilising the free land destruction provided by Field is a strictly inferior version of another deck that is. Celestial Colonnade, Azcanta, the Sunken Ruin, Academy Ruins, Raging Ravine, Urza's Tower, Sea Gate Wreckage, Eldrazi Temple, Moorland Haunt, Gavony Township, Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle and I could go on - the point is, there are a lot of lands with powerful effects in Modern, and to not have the free answer provided to them in the form of Field is a serious omission that only the most proactive strategies can afford to make. A land drop that also double times as a spell is extremely powerful, especially one that answers the powerful lands of other decks.

So, given the necessity of Field of Ruin, is it greedy to play 3 colours? With any less than 22 coloured sources, I think so, but given that I play 26 lands, generally speaking, being colour screwed is not an issue. This is also greatly helped by the fact that so many of my cards only require one mana of a certain colour - the exceptions being the planeswalkers and Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet. I think it would be extremely greedy to attempt to play Cryptic Command in this list, for instance, but when most spells can be cast within the realm of having just one black, blue and red, Field really doesn't hurt a lot. Also worth noting is that unlike Ghost Quarter, Field does not put you down a land, and also does fix your mana after it is activated, so in most cases, Field really shouldn't hurt.

The only time when Field is a real pain is if you have 2 of your 3 lands are Field of Ruin, because then your hand can be really slowed down. In such cases, either mulligan, or keep and pull through with Thoughtseize and Fatal Push. Consider also the early requirements of this list - with a single black mana, most of the relevant 1 and 2 drops are castable. The lack of Lightning Bolt is a conscious choice, one made for many reasons, one among which is the mana.

Inquisition of Kozilek misses too much. Cryptic Command, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Teferi, Hero of Dominaria, everything Tron plays, all of Jund's big drops including Bloodbraid Elf, Primeval Titan, Through the Breach, all the random four mana planeswalkers a bunch of different decks play, Gurmag Angler, Tasigur, the Golden Fang, and I could go on - but the point is, in a deck that isn't seeking to proactively push through damage and end the game, unconditional answers are better than conditional ones, and Thoughtseize excels in many a situation where Inquisition is only medium. The life loss is not as big a deal as it is in other decks, owing to the 3 Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet and 3 Collective Brutality.

The list initially did have 2 Inquisition of Kozilek alongside its current package, but that proved to be too much discard in a primarily reactive shell. They were removed for more versatile and unconditional answers in Kolaghan's Command and Dreadbore. So far, that choice has definitely served me very well. Only 3 pure discard spells means the chance of dead draws is much lessened; besides, Kolaghan's Command, Collective Brutality, Sedraxis Specter and Nicol Bolas, the Ravager  Flip all double time as hand disruption that also has additional effects, and so unlike the one mana discard spells, is much less often a dead draw.

Re: Tron, yes, game 1 is god awful. Game 2, however, is actually favoured. If Tron is heavy in your meta, I would recommend sideboarding more Pithing Needle and Fulminator Mage; otherwise, the general plan is Thoughtseize into Extirpate + Field of Ruin , with a bunch of countermagic to survive through their big threats. Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet is invaluable in this matchup owing to his ability to exile Wurmcoil Engine; Thundermaw Hellkite can also come down and eat a Karn Liberated or a Ugin, the Spirit Dragon. You can also set up some nasty loops with Kolaghan's Command and Fulminator Mage that completely shuts the Tron player out of the game; and since, unlike traditional control lists, this one can turn the corner and end the game super fast, once you've gotten your disruption down, you should be able to power through to the finish before they start making their seventh and eighth land drops.

Another line of play to keep in mind is Extirpate on one of their big threats - Tron is not a threat dense deck, and if it is clear they are going to be able to make their mana and start casting big guys, then it may be worth your while to think of all the threats in their deck, and then just start cutting through the lot, so that they have nothing to do with all their mana. Tron does not really have a draw engine either, so once you've dealt with the first 3-4 threats, you're in a very very favoured position to win.

I will be testing a lot more with this deck and I plan to post the results to in a few days; stay tuned if this deck is something that interests you, and you want to see where this goes!

K00lDudE1 on Cruel and Mystical Grixis Fun

4 days ago

Aether Hub and Tendo Ice Bridge both seem bad in a control deck, as they only make 1 colored mana each, and you can't really afford to have colourless sources in a deck with Cruel Ultimatum, you just won't be able to cast your spells.

Blackmail and Duress are just worse Inquisition of Kozilek and Thoughtseizes in general.

Disallow, Dissolve and Electrickery all seem mediocre in modern, the counters have more efficient/better options like more Mana Leak/Remand/Logic Knot and more Cryptic Commands, and Electrickery is just a bad board wipe, something like Damnation or Languish is likely to be much better.

23 lands is almost always too few for a control deck, you tend to want at least 25/26 to make sure you hit your land drops consistently

A lot of cards in the sideboard have better alternatives too, like Consume the Meek, Electrickery and Yahenni's Expertise could all become Damnation or Languish which kill the more common creatures in modern, the Duress and Harsh Scrutiny could become Collective Brutality as additional discard which is more flexible, and better in more matchups and Tragic Slip should probably just be more Fatal Pushes.

ToolmasterOfBrainerd on Dimir Nightmares

6 days ago

Other cards to consider: Cryptic Command, Disrupting Shoal (probably not worth it), Field of Ruin (at least 2, I'm tempted to say the full 4), Remand (also probably not), Shadow of Doubt (lol, but still had to say it).

AdamChafee on Survival of the Fittest

6 days ago

Thanks for the feedback Chasmolinker!!

So this deck is a pain in the sense that my creatures need to be on or above curve so fully get my evolve triggers out. Since both Rashmi, Eternities Crafter and Champion of Lambholt are under curve, their syngergy is minimal. Herald of Secret Streams is essentially my Cryptic Command for the deck.

Inanity on Rise of the Lich Queen

1 week ago

SlavicGhaespar It's an interesting idea. But I wanna figure out how to squeeze Endless Ranks of the Dead into the deck first.

Coward_Token That ... Might actually be interesting. After playing with the deck a bit last, she does hit the table a lot. And she does draw a lot of cards! Haha

Abuelo Oh I definitely know the potential power of Havengul Lich, as well as Sidisi with any sac outlet. Shadow of the Grave is a card I came across when I was hunting down the cards for the deck, and I set a copy aside. One thing I noticed is an extreme desire to keep some cards in my hand, but they keep getting pitched.

GeonosisWave You're very much on the right track. I noticed exactly that last night after playtesting some. Another option I'm considering is bringing in Cryptic Command for the tap-out-your-opponents versatility.

ToolmasterOfBrainerd on Gifting Myself Wins

1 week ago

I'm not a huge fan of the mana base you currently have. The fast lands aren't optimal in a deck relying on 4-drops (and I don't agree with the choices in general) and you have too many shock lands. Also Field of Ruin is a powerful thing to fight manlands and tron.

Firstly, what does Supreme Verdict add to the deck besides convoluted cost? I know there's the gifts package where you gift for 2 boardwipes and snapcaster, but how often do you do that in this meta? If you remove supreme verdict then you remove WW casting costs, which turns this into a UBw deck, which can have a much more slick mana base. Alternatively, you could cut Cryptic Command and make the deck BWu, which is also easier. Cryptic might be the better card to cut. I don't really know, but removing one of them makes life easier.

Regardless, the manabase needs to be build around having BB by turn 3 for Liliana. When I helped my friend build his 4 color gifts deck he used a few checklands instead of fast lands. I could see either option being fine. The only fast land I would play in here is Darkslick Shores. It helps cast Liliana on turn 3 or Serum Visions on turn 1.

For shock lands I'd run 2 Watery Grave, 1 Hallowed Fountain, and 1 Godless Shrine. Anything fetched past the first Fountain or Shrine can usually be a basic land. And increase to 8-10 fetch lands. Probably 9 or 10. It adds a lot of consistency.

I'm not a huge fan of Creeping Tar Pit in here. It's better in a deck that doesn't get to 5 mana (or doesn't have the colors) for Colonnade. However, Celestial Colonnade and Shambling Vent are both very good. Colonnade is a better finisher but Shambling Vent is a better stabilizer.

Mardu pyromancer can't beat Sphinx of the Steel Wind. Other Blood Moon decks are rare. I guess Ponza? But I don't think they can beat the Sphinx either. Although Ponza won't let you get to 4 mana for Gifts.

If you want to play fast lands, I'd try this mana base:

If you want to play check lands, drop the 3 Darkslick Shores for a Drowned Catacomb and an Isolated Chapel and another fetch land.

Perhaps the best way to fight Blood Moon is with Inquisition of Kozilek and Thoughtseize. I know they're more of a thing in 4 color gifts, but have you tried them here?

Is Collective Brutality really that powerful? I understand playing 2 copies, but 4 seems like a lot.

Sorry this comment is so long-winded and scattered. I hope it helps!

LikeSpider943 on Rowan & Will EDH

1 week ago

I suggest you focus the deck on superfriends control with a few infinite combos. Scrap everything not necessary for control/combo/superfriends and add more planeswalkers. I think a deck like that would be very fun. (Also, Very Cryptic Command B is not legal, replace it with normal Cryptic Command)

Load more