Last updated on May 25, 2023
Ziatora, the Incinerator | Illustration by Chris Rahn
Every set brings tons of new toys and bombs to the Commander format, and Streets of New Capenna is no exception. The set released in late April 2022 and brought a bunch of new unique commanders for players to test and build jank decks with.
Today I’ll be summing up each commander released and rank them from worst to best. I’ll do my best to speculate with cards I haven’t interacted with and go over what I think each commander does (and doesn’t do) best.
Let’s get started!
How Many Commanders Are There in Streets of New Capenna?
Giada, Font of Hope | Illustration by Eric Deschamps
New Capenna released with 19 new legendary creatures for players to use as their new commanders. Of the new creatures, 15 were one of the five multicolored families with only four being mono-colored. Two of the mono-colored legends are red, one is white, and one is blue, which leaves black and green with no mono-colored commanders in the entire set.
#19. Cormela, Glamour Thief
Cormela, Glamour Thief generates mana for instants and sorceries and returns an instant or sorcery from your graveyard to your hand as a death trigger. Don’t get me wrong, this is a decent creature in any spellslinger deck. It’s just too weak as a commander.
I’d love to see something that copies spells, maybe a clause on the end of the mana ability that lets you copy a spell if you used that mana to cast it. Other than that I’d call this filler for a Grixis () spells deck, not a leader.
#18. Errant, Street Artist
Errant, Street Artist is a mono-blue commander that copies spells that weren’t cast, which means you’re copying spells you’ve already copied for just . While it may seem difficult it’s actually very easy to copy spells in mono blue. See Jin-Gitaxias, Progress Tyrant, Myojin of Cryptic Dreams, and any card with casualty (basically every Grixis card in the set).
#17. Lagrella, the Magpie
Lagrella, the Magpie is super confusing and worded very poorly. It’s basically just Grasp of Fate, but your stuff comes back with two +1/+1 counters when it dies and releases everything.
The card is good and is decent removal, but it’s just not that great of a commander. I could see this generating some value for a regular Bant () good stuff deck with a few good ETBs.
#16. Jaxis, the Troublemaker
Jaxis, the Troublemaker is a human warrior with blitz that also has an activated ability that creates a hasted copy of a creature you control that’s sacrificed at your end step, drawing you a card. This is actually card advantage if you manage to blitz for and also have to activate it, which is very interesting.
This is another one of those legendary creatures that are decent cards on their own but don’t have too much of a spot as actual commanders. I suppose playing it as a way to duplicate huge red creatures with ETBs or on-death triggers like Atsushi, the Blazing Sky would be solid.
#15. Evelyn, the Covetous
Evelyn, the Covetous is up next in the #15 spot as a very nice multiplayer card. It steals cards from the top of each player’s library, allowing you to play them yourself using any colors of mana.
You’re likely to find some good things with each trigger since the effect happens whenever any vampire enters the battlefield. This is just what vampires have been waiting for, and it’s in Grixis. Having access to blue helps these decks generate card advantage and have non-removal-based interaction, which makes them generally better.
#14. Rigo, Streetwise Mentor
In the #14 spot is Rigo, Streetwise Mentor, a 2/2 for three that enters with a shield counter and draws you a card whenever you attack with a creature that has power one or less. This is certainly interesting, especially for a low-to-the-ground weenie deck, but I’m a little confused as to why this doesn’t have a 1/3 or 1/4 stat line. 2/2 is generally okay for three mana with an effect, but 1/3 would make more sense in the context of the card.
#13. Falco Spara, Pactweaver
Falco Spara, Pactweaver is a Bant commander that lets you look at and play cards from the top of your library at the cost of removing a counter from a creature you control. You get a shield counter with Falco on ETB, and +1/+1 counters are ever prevalent and work, so this could be a decent Bant control commander. It’ll give you some much-needed card advantage and info to play with, which is always nice.
Some nice conniving creatures may work well in tandem, acting as ways to filter cards you don’t want while also generating +1/+1 counters to spend.
#12. Jinnie Fay, Jetmir’s Second
Jinnie Fay, Jetmir's Second is a token commander, and a good one at that. It has a triggered ability that lets you make 2/2 cats with haste or 3/1 dogs with vigilance whenever you create one or more tokens of any kind.
This is very strong in decks that excel at making Treasure tokens, especially if you get your hands on a Bootleggers' Stash. You could end up making 10 or 12 creatures every upkeep, which is downright amazing.
#11. Ognis, the Dragon’s Lash
Ognis, the Dragon's Lash is a 4-mana 3/3 with haste that generates Treasure tokens whenever a creature you control with haste attacks. Treasure tokens are super overpowered in Commander and can help your Jund () beats deck pull ahead of the curve.
And there are plenty of Treasure payoffs outside of big creatures thanks to recent sets. Stimulus Package converts them into tangible creatures for additional damage pre-Craterhoof Behemoth. Professional Face-Breaker is also great at generating card advantage, something that heavily empowers Jund.
#10. Toluz, Clever Conductor
Toluz, Clever Conductor is a 3/1 for three that connives when it enters the battlefield on top of returning discarded cards to your hand. Toluz is the ultimate payoff engine for Esper () connive decks since it turns that looting effect into a draw effect, which is infinitely better.
Although connive is new and shiny, I think a wheels theme just works better. Blue has access to about one third of all the wheels, most of which are pretty strong. This makes them incredibly good, especially when most blue wheels either exile the graveyard or return the graveyard to your library. You’ll immediately have access to your discards when Toluz dies while your opponents will need to rely on luck to get theirs back.
Some sacrifice outlets may be important in a Toluz list, especially if you can swing a sacrifice sub-theme. It’ll help you get access to the cards you want that you discarded, or your opponents may just let you keep swinging or not attack to prevent Toluz from dying.
#9. Raffine, Scheming Seer
Raffine, Scheming Seer is a 1/4 flier for with ward 1. Raffine’s ability allows you to connive X, where X is the number of attacking creatures you control. This is a fairly serious looting ability that can help you sift through the top five or six of cards of your library in a single turn.
But conniving is strictly worse than drawing a card, so any reanimation or graveyard-mechanics help take this deck to the next level. You’re going to inevitably discard cards you’ll eventually want, so anything that can bring those cards back when you need them is important.
Neon Dynasty gave us Containment Construct, which is about as good as it gets. Though the new Obscura Charm and Toluz, Clever Conductor are also great.
#8. Mr. Orfeo, the Boulder
In the #8 spot is Mr. Orfeo, the Boulder, which is a name that’s much less scary than the actual card. Orfeo is a 2/4 rhino warrior for four that gives one of your attacking creatures double the power until the end of the turn. It’s a fairly simple effect that can be extremely powerful with infect, trample, or creatures with double strike.
I’m a sucker for good old fashioned Jund good stuff, and this is a great commander for it. It’s simple in nature which makes it a strong pick for players of all skill levels, and it doesn’t leave much to be desired in terms of power level. But if I had to make a change I’d reduce its mana cost to just or also have it give that creature trample. I just think that would take it much farther in terms of power level, but we’re also talking about an uncommon here.
#7. Ziatora, the Incinerator
In the #7 spot is a commander I was particularly excited for during spoiler season. Ziatora, the Incinerator is a 6/6 flier for six that allows you to sacrifice a creature to deal damage equal to that creature’s power to anything on top of making three Treasure tokens at each of your end steps.
The damage is nice, but I’m more focused on the tokens with this card. That’s some seriously strong ramp, and it can help to re-fill the board after big sacrifices. Being in black also opens you up to some reanimation engines, which could make for huge plays with creatures that have strong ETBs like Craterhoof Behemoth.
#6. Urabrask, Heretic Praetor
In the #6 spot is everyone’s least favorite Phyrexian Praetor, Urabrask, Heretic Praetor. This is a great upgrade compared to the other Urabrask, and the card advantage helps takes mono-red decks to the next level in terms of being able to apply consistent pressure.
But I would’ve loved to see Heretic Praetor in Rakdos . It just seems more fitting for those colors and would open up a lot more doors for this commander. Especially in the general creature-beat-down department.
#5. Giada, Font of Hope
Starting off the top five is Giada, Font of Hope, the new 2-mana angel commander that’s also breaking new ground in Standard by empowering Orzhov () and Esper angels decks. I just think this card is sweet. A cheap commander that works wonders the second it comes out is great, and it brings so much to angel tribal decks for the cost.
Stacking counters gets out of hand quickly and can easily help to gain you well over 100 life over the course of a game given how many angels have lifelink. The mana ramp is also greatly appreciated. White has none already, and this commander always keeps you a turn ahead of the curve with most angels costing four or five mana.
#4. Queza, Augur of Agonies
Queza, Augur of Agonies really stuck with me in the prerelease and I knew it could end up being a great wheels commander for anyone who enjoys a nice Esper control/good-stuff deck. Don’t get me wrong, Queza won’t win any cEDH tournaments, but it’s a great Esper commander for grinding out games. And it’s really nice to see a wheels commander that isn’t in red.
Of course you’re missing out on red wheels, but the power of white’s protection and black’s removal can make up for it while blue does most of the heavy lifting here.
#3. Lord Xander, the Collector
Next up in the #3 spot is Lord Xander, the Collector. There was a lot of hype around this legendary vampire demon noble when it was spoiled, mostly because it’s one of the meanest cards I’ve seen WotC print.
A target opponent mills half of their deck rounded down when Lord Xander enters the battlefield or attacks, which is an incredible toll if they’re not a graveyard deck. On top of that, any target opponent also has to sacrifice half their nonland permanents rounded down when Lord Xander dies. This puts a serious tax on killing it.
Some serious politics comes into play here since those not being attacked by the Lord aren’t exactly incentivized to blow it up and would rather wait for their other adversary to take the blow first. This is just classic
#2. Rocco, Cabaretti Caterer
In the #2 spot is Rocco, Cabaretti Caterer, a Naya () commander that works as a tutor for creatures in your deck. This seems super busted at first glance. Green is great at getting up to big mana, and having an 11-mana Craterhoof Behemoth in the command zone is a huge advantage for any creature deck.
There’s also something to be said about this commander for combo decks. A lot of Naya cEDH decks rely on Birthing Pod lines to close out games, and this can be a great way to get a 3-drop for the combo and some other creature you need, which can offer protection from spot removal.
#1. Jetmir, Nexus of Revels
Jetmir, Nexus of Revels seems like a strong and simple Naya beatdown commander that gives extra returns on investment for decks that like to go wide, like tokens. The vigilance buff being the easiest to get is definitely nice since it lets you keep up a stable defense which prevents your life total from dropping in conjunction with your opponents.
The double strike and trample effects, if you reach that many creatures, is really something to behold. Your board state becomes practically unbeatable, and you’ll only be susceptible to board wipes as a way of losing. Throw in something like Teferi's Protection and you should be set with basically any nine creatures thanks to the +3/+0 effect, even if they’re 1/1 mana dorks.
Lagrella, the Magpie | Illustration by Donato Giancola
That concludes all of the new commanders from Streets of New Capenna! I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty excited to test a few of these myself, especially Falco Spara, Pactweaver, and Queza, Augur of Agonies.
What do you think of the set from a commander standpoint? Are you picking up a ton of new singles and commanders for your decks, or is it a bit below your expectations? Let me know down below in the comments or over in the official Draftsim Discord.
Until next time, stay safe and stay healthy!
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