Xantcha, Sleeper Agent

Xantcha, Sleeper Agent

Legendary Creature — Minion

As Xantcha, Sleeper Agent enters the battlefield, an opponent of your choice gains control of it.

Xantcha attacks each combat if able, and can't attack its owner or planeswalkers its owner controls.

: Xantcha's controller loses 2 life and you draw a card. Any player may activate this ability.

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Set Rarity
Commander 2018 (C18) Rare

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Format Legality
Tiny Leaders Legal
1v1 Commander Legal
Magic Duels Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Vintage Legal
Leviathan Legal
Legacy Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Oathbreaker Legal
Casual Legal
Commander / EDH Legal

Xantcha, Sleeper Agent occurrence in decks from the last year

Commander / EDH:

All decks: 0.02%

Rakdos: 0.39%

Xantcha, Sleeper Agent Discussion

Mj3913 on Commanders that create an interesting ...

4 hours ago

Isperia the Inscrutable ìs fun. I went the flying toolbox route, but there are several ways you could go. Voltron, stax, flying tribal, flying + Tribe - tribal (Angels, Spirits, Birds, oh and of course Sphinx).

There's also Tangarth, First Mate and Xantcha, Sleeper Agent if you want super weird.

Pervavita on EDH Deck based on Voting

4 weeks ago

I think in this your looking to manipulate the table to do what you want even when giving them choices so I would look at the most resent Commander preconstructed decks and see what fun they have for you.

Goad as a mechanic also looks good as your opponents get to chose who to attack but it's not you so thus it's really what you wanted.

O-Kagachi, Vengeful Kami would play into this as your opponents aren't going to chose to attack you even though they do have the choice too. It also works in that you get all the voting cards. Toss in an Assault Suit and now the Kami swings every ware but at you and well watch the mayhem unfold.

Xantcha, Sleeper Agent also gives your opponents something to do that should fit on theme.

Overabundance should help ramp you but also gives your opponents choices that aren't always the best for them.

Braingamer on Card creation challenge

1 month ago

Teferi, Time Lord -

Legendary Planeswalker - Teferi

+4 - Draw 2 cards, your opponents can't cast non-creature spells until the beginning of your next turn

-3 - Exile target creature and you gain life equal to its power

-16 - If you control no nonland or nontoken permanents you win the game.


Not 100% sure if this would break anything but designing big things, especially planeswalkers, is super fun. Just tried to make a control card that seemed strong.

Make an enchantment with an ability that any player can activate similar to Xantcha, Sleeper Agent

MurderForBrunch on Cowboy Bebop Inspired Mathas Deck

2 months ago

Hey Mortarpod, I actually think that Xantcha, Sleeper Agent is a great flavor inclusion in the deck, but not as Faye, but as Julia! She is "at the enemy side" but she never attacks or harms you. She is actually on our side, and makes way for us to win the game! :D

Mortarpod on Cowboy Bebop Inspired Mathas Deck

2 months ago

I'm guessing you decided not to include all of the ships after all? I thought that was a really cool take on things.

Also, Xantcha, Sleeper Agent seems like a better Faye imho. She's sneaky, duplicitous, feels like her life isn't her own, and ultimately grows beyond being motivated solely by her own self-interest.

+1 for the concept though!

TypicalTimmy on Vlad the Impaler

2 months ago

My take on one of history's most brutal butchers; Vlad the Impaler. Rather than going all out in full-blown detail, just do a few Google searches and catch up. It's a lot of content, very graphic depictions, and horrific nature.

Vlad the Impaler

Legendary Creature - Human Minion

Deathtouch, Lifelink

, : Gain control of target creature. Untap that creature. It gains haste until end of turn. Sacrifice it at the beginning of the next end step.

Whenever another creature dies, you gain 1 life.

Pay 3 life: Draw a card.


So Vlad is known for several things: Being a ruthless leader, feasting on the blood of his victims, and displaying graphic scenes of torture by impaling captured victims on spikes.

His mana cost and color requirements are set at for several reasons -

  • 1.) It helps justify having 5 distinct abilities on the card. He has 2x keyword abilities, 2x activated abilities and 1x triggered ability. If he were mono-black, he should easily cost or even perhaps . But the second color makes it more difficult to cast, and thus we can reasonably lower his cost down to 5 CMC rather than 6 CMC.
  • 2.) The secondary also helps justify all five abilities on the card in general. Setting his cost at would give the impression that he is severely over powered for his cost. Commanders that cost in a sliding scale would be Xantcha, Sleeper Agent and Mogis, God of Slaughter . I feel that both increasing Vlad's CMC to 5 and slotting in three specific colors is more than fair for what you are getting from him.

The reason he is a Minion is because in MTG, a Minion is a creature type who knowingly bring harm upon others through subterfuge or open malice

Deathtouch and Lifelink because he butchered thousands (Both by his command and by his own sword) and even was known to drink the blood of dying victims.

First activated ability mirrors Slave of Bolas . He was known to capture many enemies alive and kill them in ruthless displays. I am not sure if he kept any as slaves, but regardless you might as well put them to some good use.

Gaining 1 life whenever something else dies hones in on his bloodlust. I didn't want to go with another typical Blood Artist design because I feel focusing more on his gross gluttony is of greater design than balancing the scales of war. To balance this trade-off, card advantage is built into him. Rather than bleeding your opponents dry (Which would be more on flavor), you use the deaths of their creatures to further your own campaign of slaughter (Which is more historically accurate).

Paying 3 life to draw a card plays nicely into his death-gain abilities. Rakdos has solid draw, but this just adds another onto the pile. A lot of cards actually put life-for-cards at a lower value. Consider Night's Whisper , Read the Bones and Sign in Blood . Additionally there is Greed , Arguel's Blood Fast  Flip and Necrologia . All of these roughly put the value of a card at 1 life + mana costs. Even Yawgmoth's Bargain asks for merely 1 life per card, at the cost of your draw step. The reason Vlad sets the price at 3 is because it is expected you will be building either a midrange deck or an Aristocrats deck, meaning mass death will be something constantly happening. In this way, you benefit greatly by pushing your life total ever higher than your opponents. This in turn means paying a higher cost for cards is not only something you can reasonably do, but should be expected as Vlad is essentially giving you a free card whenever 3x creatures die.

I recognize that some users may be turned off by a potential T3 Vlad (Hit your land drops and play a Sol Ring ), then drawing potentially 10x cards right off the bat. However, the way I see it is that if you want to sink 30 life into him on T3, by all means be my guest. If you are the type of player who views life as a resource, go for it. It just means you're that much easier to take down. It becomes a balance between raw power and a stable position. That decision rightfully lays at the feet of Vlad's controller and it is their responsibility to use it wisely.

He is set as a 3/3 because while he is a terrifying and deadly person, he is just Human and thus should be within this range. He is strong enough to kill generic Soldiers / Knights / Zombies / Humans / Elves but will easily die to more threatening foes as we squishy Humans are, in fact, quite frail.

Setting him as a 3/3 rather than a 2/4 means that when he deals damage, you gain 3 life and can thus pay into his ability to draw a card. While it is true that he might die and thus you won't be able to pay into his draw ability, it also means you can recast him during your 2nd main phase and spend the life immediately. It's a way to balance his want to block / attack with his draw. Just another way to feed into his abilities.

DarkHero on Looking for a cheap and ...

3 months ago

Maybe Xantcha, Sleeper Agent ? She encourages opponents to waste resources on each other and in those colors you can play all kinds of aggro and tempo tricks to take advantage of the time you buy yourself. Aggro can be hit or miss in EDH if you draw the ire of the rest of the table attacking then early.

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