Cryptic Command

Cryptic Command

Instant

Choose two —

  • Counter target spell.

  • Return target permanent to its owner's hand.

  • Tap all creatures your opponents control.

  • Draw a card.

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Legality

Format Legality
1v1 Commander Legal
Block Constructed Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Commander / EDH Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Highlander Legal
Legacy Legal
Leviathan Legal
Limited Legal
Modern Legal
Oathbreaker Legal
Pauper Legal
Pauper EDH Legal
Unformat Legal
Vintage Legal
Casual Legal
Custom Legal
Quest Magic Legal

Latest Decks as Commander

Cryptic Command Discussion

Caerwyn on Top 5 Counterspells Of All …

1 week ago

I always got the impression that Mana Leak was a reluctant staple in Modern--it reached staple status not because it was a great counter, but because there was a dearth in good Modern counters at 2 mana.

Looking at MTGTop8 for 2020, 10.2% of decks ran Mana Leak, and they ran an average of 2.2 copies. Compare to Force of Negation at 16.8% and 2.8 cards and Cryptic Command at 17.2%. This data shows players were running a few copies of Mana Leak because they wanted to fill in some additional counters--but the card itself is not good enough to warrant much investment.

Flash forward to decks for the past 2 months. Mana Leak is no longer the 3rd most common counterspell--it is the 10th, seeing play in only 1.8% of decks. There are a number of reasons for this massive decline.

The most significant is the introduction of the better two-mana counterspell, Counterspell , which immediately established itself as the second most common counterspell after Force of Negation , sitting at 16.3% of the decks and an average of 3.7 copies per deck. This indicates people are not just running Counterspell , but they are running playsets of it--a clear indication that Mana Leak was simply filler until something better came along.

The remainder of the counters that have overtaken Mana Leak are more niche cards such as Drown in the Loch (which doubles as removal), Metallic Rebuke (which can be cast for one mana), and Spell Snare (which is a strong meta counter for one mana). These cards are generally going to be better than Mana Leak in any deck/meta that can utilize them effectively.

All told, I think Mana Leak is valued exactly where it should be - a second-rate card that's inferior to other two-mana options, but held a disproportionate sway in the Modern meta for a long time due to Wizards' not printing Counterspell in Modern. I could see it finding a home in Standard, for the same reason it found a home in Modern--lack of better competition.

berryjon on Top 5 Counterspells Of All …

1 week ago

Naksu, you're thinking of Mana Tithe . There's also Guttural Response , which I used to beat up Cryptic Command when both were in Standard.

Mtg_Mega_Nerds on Top 5 Counterspells Of All …

1 week ago

Feel free to comment if you disagree with me, that's fine! I was considering these cards, but they did not make the list: Cryptic Command , Flusterstorm , and Swan Song .

5: Counterspell - Nothing really to say here. Counters a spell for 2 mana and under no conditions. Decent card, have it in many of my decks with blue in it. It is the most affordable.

4: Pact of Negation - Non-conditional and can be easily bluffed, but you are limited to using it later in the game when you have the mana to pay for it. Plus if you only have 5 mana at the time, you won't be able to do much on your turn.

3: Force of Negation - Conditional so it can't always be cast for free and it only targets noncreature spells, but extremely powerful when used on an opponent's turn to stop one of their plays or protect something of yours. Plus, it will be very easy to bluff having this counterspell, and also gives the added benefit of exiling.

2: Mana Drain - Counters a spell for 2 mana under no conditions, and most likely repays itself and gives you more mana to cast things. Can easily put you ahead in the game.

1: Force of Will - Same thing as Force of Negation but better, because it can counter any type of spell and it can be cast for free on your turn as well. Easily the best counterspell in the game. One life is a small drawback, and you will most likely have a blue card in hand to exile.

Grubbernaut on Alchemy Balcony

2 weeks ago

Perplex is one of those cards that's always worse than you want it to be; they'll only ever discard their hand if it's preferable for them to do so. I know it has the transmute option, but it might be worth ditching it or playing other dig spells - things like Opt , Sleight of Hand , Behold the Multiverse , etc. Drift of Phantasms and Dimir Infiltrator suffer from a similar downside, in that the front side really doesn't do much. Archmage's Charm is a really solid, flexible option I would recommend, and even the usual suspects of Snapcaster Mage , Cryptic Command , etc

I also think Blue Sun's Zenith is a better wincon than Mind Grind , since there may be situations where you need to use it to dig for value, and Grind doesn't offer that flexibility. If you stick with transmute spells, BSZ is also a 3 drop.

Finally, I think 4x basic swamp in a deck with so much in the way of UU is a high risk; fetches, checklands, or even Clearwater Pathway  Flip offer some more insurance against manascrew.

Cheers!

Flooremoji on Control freak

3 weeks ago

Alright, first off, welcome to modern!

Asumming you are going for the most powerful list you can make with a decent budget?

If you aren't going semi-budget (and maybe even if you are), I'd certainly add some better lands for fixing mana.

After a quick look at your list, here are a few obervations:

You have no cheap removal, and all your countermagic starts at three mana. This can be too slow on the draw to put up much of a fight. (Consider cheaper efficient removal and counterspells, such as Path to Exile , Force of Negation maybe even Solitude )

You are playing some spells that are rather inefficient at their job ( Azorius Charm , Muddle the Mixture , Render Silent , Sphinx's Revelation , Send to Sleep , Narset Transcendent , and Silence . I understand the appeal of the scepter lock, but it's honestly rather bad against most decks in modern. I'd probably play Scepter by itself without Silence just as value, but it's slow and not very flexible still.) With this is mind, here are some more suggestions:

Negate is worse Dovin's Veto in U/W control

You are missing the one of the best counterspells in modern right now, Archmage's Charm . This is easily a four of do to it's flexibility and power. Cryptic Command is not far behind either, and I would probably utilize it over Narset Transcendent .

Narset, Parter of Veils is decent if you expect slower metas.

Short on time here, so I'm going to link a solid U/W control list for you to look at.

https://www.mtggoldfish.com/deck/4081666#paper

This one has a bit of a focus on the miracle mechanic, so there are a few cards you probably wouldn't play in a non miracle list. (Still a very solid deck though, and if you want to have fun with it you can add a Riptide Laboratory :P )

K0rt on Grixis control

1 month ago

Your mana is currently a bit of a mess. You want untapped black on T1 for the hand disruption and then UU and BR on T2 to with Kroxa, Titan of Death's Hunger and Counterspell together, almost guarteeing starting the game at 16 life. As the game continues you want BBRR for Kroxa and UUU for Snapcaster Mage + Counterspell. You also have double island, which is going to be extremely awkward with Kroxa, especially since you going to be fetching them pretty often to save life in the aggressive matchups. As it stands in your build you're going to be taking 6+ damage from your lands per game, especially since you have 9+ shocks. I would per cut 2 Steam Vents and 2 Watery Grave and 1 Bloodstained Mire to add a 2 Creeping Tar Pit for a man-land late game, a Mountain to have a painless untapped red source and some Darkslick Shores for untapped painless black on T1. You could also play some Field of Ruin to help in the Amulet Titan and Tron matchups.

As for cards you currently don't have any methods outside of the Lurrus of the Dream-Den + Mishra's Bauble engine to draw cards or gain card advantage, which is extremely easy to disrupt and is going to lead to a lot of situations where you're going to be out ground in the Control mirror or by Stoneblade decks since both these types of decks can deal with Kroxa easily. Search for Azcanta  Flip is a good method of doing this, it bins cards for Kroxa and works well with counterspells. I'm a big Expressive Iteration fan, although it works best in a discard-based control decks and more Aggressive Grixis Builds since you can play [Inquisition of Kozilek] and Thoughtseize proactivly. Cryptic Command is another way, although it is basically unplayable in the same deck as Kroxa due to mana requirements and is much better in a blue-based Sprite Dragon Grixis control version.

I'd also play 4 Lightning Bolt . It's in a very good position in the current meta and a large number of games are won by Bolt Snap Bolt. If your playing Kroxa Thought Scour is extremely good. It increases the amount of T4 Kroxa being cast while also milling Brainstone activations and Snapcaster targets. Collective Brutality is very good against aggro decks like Burn. Dauthi Voidwalker is a very good card against decks like AsmoFood and BR Midrange and can be played in the main deck or the sideboard. I also Jace, Vryn's Prodigy  Flip in these still of decks as a way of gain card advantage that can be replayed with Lurrus, although it is mostly a pet card for me and isn't really competitive.

BadLuke on The Unstoppable Tide

1 month ago

28 Lands seem very low for a Deck like this. Even if you consider it to be "Aggro". I found 33-34 to be a good amount for Decks even with Dorks and Ramp. Might seem boring but it brings alot of Consistency to the table. Other than that, I like your attempt on Maelstrom Wanderer . Shaman of Forgotten Ways is a bit questionable to me. Is the Biorhythm Effect ever paying of? Might Somberwald Sage be a better Option here? Garruk, Primal Hunter Can also be replaced by Return of the Wildspeaker since it does the same thing at Instant Speed. You're also pretty low on instants, which is not the worst thing ever. But you might consider atleast some stronger Options, Multiple Choice Counterspells are usually great with Cascade as they provide felxibility and never be a dead "Cascade" such as Sublime Epiphany , Cryptic Command and Mystic Confluence for example. If you like, you can checkout my Wanderer Deck and also leave a comment there. Peace

Savage_Hunter on The Locust God

1 month ago

True, Kindred Discovery will kill me. Unless I have some prior set up. Say I had Impact Tremors out before. Usually my opponents will die before I deck out. Or if I had enough mana, I could Cryptic Command one of my pieces off the board. Even safer if I have a sac outlet, like the Ashnod's Altar .

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