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The last of the episodes about #MTGSNC to keep us honest! It's prediction time!! How right were Nick and Zak about Kamigawa Neon Dynasty? What do they think about SNC? Any cards they're impressed by or not impressed by? And what's the deal with spells with four color-pip costs in... 5 color decks?!?! It's all here! So listen in, laugh and cry with …
 
In this very special episode, Nick and Zak are delighted to talk to Megan Smith! Magic: The Gathering Designer and current Green Council Member on the Council of Colors in Studio X. For those who might not have listened before, The Council of Colors is a team put together so Studio X can help to stop breaks in the color pie between all the products…
 
HOOBOY! Welcome to a long episode! All about the new commanders and cards in the NCC set (That's New Capenna Commander). Nick and Zak get right deep into the decks starting off with the commanders and getting into main deck cards in WUBRG order, so if you want to hear about only a particular color feel free to skip around! What family got the best …
 
AND NOW: Ladies and cephalids, boys and germs! We give to you, this doozy of an episode! And a bit early! The Maindeck cards from Capenna are many and there's a lot going on, So Nick enlisted the help of supporter and friend of the show Jason to get into the nitty-gritty of what's good in New Capenna! What can you do with the new white protection s…
 
Here again! A new set is upon us in all its art deco wonder! Streets of New Capenna bring us a whole lot of new stuff to play with! So in this episode, Nick and supporter and friend of the show, Jason (Zak was on vacation, sorry!) get into the nitty-gritty of the new commanders available! What legends look really fun? Anything busted? Did Edric rea…
 
You read that right: this week on Commander Theory Nick and Zak discuss a project Nick has been working on for a while. Phyrexian Rebirth is a fan-made module to be run using the 5th edition DnD rules that allows players to explore the world of New Phyrexia just after the event of the Mirrodin storyline. The GM and players will be able to use the r…
 
Last week's episode got us thinking: What are our favorite mechanics and why? So in this episode, Nick and Zak have a little chat about just that! What makes a good mechanic, and why? There's so much space in magic design, but what can be mined further and to good ends? Listen in and tell us what you think too! You can reach us on Twitter or Tumblr…
 
We asked for some custom commanders and you all delivered! In this episode of Commander Theory, Nick and Zak asked for custom legendary creatures that focused on underutilized mechanics from the past. There's everything from combat-focused commanders to Mono-black spells, and even energy and charms thrown in there too! Was that an arcane/cipher leg…
 
Sometimes life hands you lemons, and sometimes you gotta put out a rerun podcast to deal with all those lemons, so here we are! Nick and Zak are fine, just had a lot on their respective plates this week, so here's one of the podcasts we think about a lot (and should really revisit soon tbh...) If you've never heard before please enjoy! It's a trip …
 
Many content creators on the internet have posted episodes of shows and podcasts where they discuss a baseline way to build decks. They're usually heuristics like, "You need 10 ramp spells" or "you need 3 board clears" that are easy to follow and remember. But what do the Commander Theory hosts use...? In this episode, Nick and Zak lay out their pr…
 
We're back with another retrospective! In this Seasons Past we look at a set that had a huge influence on Nick and Zak: Mirage! What did Mirage do differently than the sets before it? What cards are people still playing? There's even a little controversy?!? All this and more! So listen in and tell us your favorite card from the set! You can reach u…
 
One of the benefits of this whole New Secret Lair Cards thing is that, oh wow! A TON of new commanders to build around!! In this episode, Nick and Zak get into the legendaries from the (now in preorder) Secret Lair - Street Fighter cards. There are some interesting build-arounds and some not-so-subtle build paths, on top of some really cool things …
 
YOU THOUGHT WE WERE DONE. Well, Nick and Zak wanted to take one more look back at the joys of Kamigawa Neon Dynasty and assess how well their predictions went from Crimson Vow. This episode is a great check-in on what people are actually playing, what new players like, what cards the two co-hosts enjoy, and generally get to talking about Magic and …
 
AND WITH THAT we have finished another review season! Nick and Zak get right to it, digging into possible builds for the two new Commander decks to come out alongside Kamigawa Neon Dynasty! There are six new legends and a ton of new cards, but not all that shimmers in cyber tech is golden. What do the two hosts think about the themes, and how were …
 
A ratfolk on a hoverbike just zoomed by my house and painted graffiti all over the alley. Guess that means Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty is out! In this doozy of an episode, Nick and Zak review all the commanders and cards they think you should note in the regular set for NEO (basically anything you can get in a set booster). There is SO much and the epis…
 
Commander Theory focuses a lot on what the format looks like if we observe the whole. Nick and Zak often use language about what you "should do" or "ought to do" or "ought to play" when describing the format, but what do they actually play? Not these decks anymore! That's for sure! In this episode Nick and Zak talk about decks that just... weren't …
 
In this episode, Nick and Zak look at some builds that won't break the bank! Commander can be an expensive hobby, and it can often feel like you need to keep up in an arms race to compete, but that's not necessarily the case! Nick and Zak layout 7 decks that can really punish a table, some for under $100! And they work so effectively because the co…
 
Nick and Zak do a little different take on a retrospective this year. The twist? As they look back at their favorite cards from 2021 they have to pick cards that are WAY too good for how cheap they are! There's a few from every set last year, so come on the ride and use the affiliate link below to buy some cards on the cheap! Did you have some favo…
 
On this very special episode of Commander Theory Nick interviews Corey Bowen! Magic: the Gathering designer and the representative for Black on the Council of Colors in Wizard's of the Coast's Studio X. What is the history of black's color pie in Magic? What has it gained? what has it lost? There's talk of treasure, life payments, sacrifice, so muc…
 
WE ARE BACK! It's 2022 and we're kicking things off with a wonderful interview with Chris Mooney! GDS3 competitor and full-time Magic designer since 2019, working on wonderful sets you might have heard of like Innistrad: Midnight Hunt and Innistrad: Crimson Vow! In this interview, we talk about Chris's old job as the Colorless Council Member, their…
 
As you've probably heard by now, the sky is falling! Oh wait, there are more digital-only cards! And a... new format? What does this have to do with Commander? And what does this mean for design in the future? Join Nick and Zak as they lament some changes to the easiest way to pick up games of magic, talk about what they do like about the changes, …
 
Back so soon? You hardly finished your first few MID drafts. But that's alright, because on this episode Nick and Zak look at some preliminary numbers for their Innistrad Midnight Hunt predictions! The two take some guesses as to what's gonna be the top 10 most popular cards from Innistrad Crimson Vow! What's different this time around? Can we see …
 
A new installment, a new series! Now officially named Seasons Past! Where we look back at old designs to see how we got to where we are today. In this episode, Nick and Zak get friend-of-the-show Charlotte Sable - CAG member and excellent writer of magic knowledge - to look back at one of her favorite sets: Alliances! What cards stuck with us? How …
 
In a short and sweet episode, Nick and Zak talk about, well, what it was like at MTG Las Vegas! We got to go and meet a ton of new people, some old friends, play a ton of Magic, and generally get a good look at what the future might hold for the Commander Community! (We're playing a game while recording so there's a little bit of that happening too…
 
Watch out! Behind you! It's the two Crimson Vow commander preconstructed decks! And they have dozens of new cards to brew with! In this episode Nick and Zak get into, you guessed it! The new cards from the Innistrad: Crimson Vow commander decks. We look at what's cool, what's new and inventive, and if reanimation needs more... reanimation spells? I…
 
Time again so soon - Grab your finest cloak and gown, stow your weapons at the door, and help yourself to the... blood fountain? Because Crimson Vow is upon us! And with it, a bevy of Magic: The Gathering cards to build around and with! In this episode, Nick and Zak get into the nitty-gritty of the legendary creatures! What cards do they want? What…
 
In 2017 Mark Rosewater released an article/resource for Magic: The Gathering fans and home designers called the Mechanical Color Pie. The article includes TONS of drop-down menus and various ways in which every mechanic used on a magic card at the time was sorted into color, by color, and in alphabetical order. It was a HUGE undertaking, and incred…
 
HAPPY HALLOWEEN! For this week Nick and Zak get back to the original set to bring horror to the MTG universe! Not Innistrad in 2011, but The Dark! Originally released in 1994 the cards have left lasting impressions on the two hosts for a long time! So for this spooky weekend take a trip down memory lane to see the set that made mana rocks the way t…
 
Best friends and mindflayers and clues, oh my! SLD Stranger Things features a bunch of new commanders and a special but familiar new mechanic. So Nick and Zak dig into builds, preferences, and what this means for design in the future! Because ethics aside, the designs are pretty interesting! It is a proto Universes Beyond deal after all! We also ar…
 
BONUS EPISODE: After every set review we check in to see what cards players are adopting from the previous sets, and Innistrad, Midnight Hunt is no exception! After a flood of content for MID we finally got it out! Nick and Zak invited their friend and collaborator Alex Whiteclay to join rounding out the set review. Together they look at what was m…
 
How much space is there left for new commander designs really? A WHOLE LOT. On this episode of Commander Theory, Nick and Zak solicited designs from you, the listeners, and you didn't let us down! There's a ton of custom commanders that open up new spaces in the format, and frankly, we're sad they're not real! So if you like theory crafting, if you…
 
Midnight hunt wasn't the only boon for commander players this fall. With each Innistrad set we get this fall, there are an additional two new Commander Preconstructed decks with new cards! So Nick and Zak get into the two decks from Midnight Hunt - Zombies and Coven - with their friend and collaborator Alex Whiteclay to see what looks strong, what …
 
MID is here! The newest Magic: The Gathering set - Innistrad Midnight Hunt - is here with a deluge of new commanders and a torrent of new main deck cards. Nick and Zak invite their good friend and collaborator Alex Whiteclay on to discuss all the new goodness, what they're excited about, set mechanics, the whole thing! All of it! Wierd card interac…
 
In a startling turn of events, GOLOS HAS BEEN BANNED IN COMMANDER and Worldfire has been unbanned in commander! (Also rule 11 is rule 10 now) This caught Nick and Zak by surprise, as well as many in the community, so friend of the show Charlotte Sable came on to help explain the thoughts and discussions the RC and CAG had to highlight the goals beh…
 
Jumpstart Historic Horizons hit MTG Arena and it brought with it dozens of new to the format cards and commanders! Even digital-only cards! What does this mean for historic brawl moving forawrd, especially now that we're in the age of 100 cards? What have we Nick and Zak liked, and what do they think could make it better? Could there be... trouble …
 
We had some record-breaking years for Magic in 2019, 2020, and 2021 which is almost over (!!!) And now we get to see what's on the horizon for 2022! The Magic showcase was set to announce most of what 2022 has in store, so Nick and Zak invited a friend and friend of the show Charlotte Sable (of the CAG and writer for Commander's Herald) to come and…
 
Today is the release of Jumpstart Historic Horisons! Which honestly doesn't mean too much to commander players, but Nick and Zak liked some of the cards and thought you would too! The thing is, even after a rule zero discussion where everyone says you can play with proxied digital cards, how can you? Is it possible to play with these cards made to …
 
Almost every Magic: The Gathering set has a cycle of rare lands to help you cast your spells, and most have at least one utility land that does something either the set wants, or the standard environment wanted. Over the years this has really added up! Every deck wants to cast spells, but what decks want a lot of utility lands? Are there any decks …
 
Part 2 of this series has Nick and Zak looking even further into cards they look out for in each release. Weird ramp? Enchantments dying? What about things that combo with... Allies? It's all here in this episode of cards that don't quite have enough members to... just work every game. So listen in and let us know what you think! Our YouTube has vi…
 
A little while ago Hullbreacher was banned for crimes against the table when combined with "Wheel" effects, or cards that make each player discard their hand and draw 7 new cards. The ban was abrupt, to say the least. Putting aside if the card was too good or too bad, that the card is gone is the topic we were more interested in. What were the thou…
 
You win some, you lose some. In this episode, Nick and Zak look back at old reviews to see what cards they got wrong from long ago. What cards did we undervalue? What cards were we really down on? What did we hype up that turned out to be a clunker? And very importantly, what cards are the WORLD wrong about, and not us! It's all here in this episod…
 
There are so many Magic: The Gathering cards, and so many strategies that are supported across the thousands of options you have available to you. Every set adds a little more, and if you're lucky maybe a card for your specific archetype! So on this episode, Nick and Zak take a good, hard look at groups of cards that are very close to having a thre…
 
Grab your friends! Grab a deck! And venture into the dungeon with Nick and Zak on this very special (and extra-long) episode where they delve into the nitty-gritty of the new Adventures in the Forgotten Realms MtG Commander decks! What commanders look awesome? What commanders look lame? Are there any accidental oops I'm too powerful staples? Listen…
 
This week, Nick and Zak dive into the ENTIRE Adventures in the Forgotten Realms set: the legends we hadn't seen, planeswalkers, maindeck cards, and we made sure to have a little Class... That was a bad joke, but there's so much stuff! So jump in and tell us what you think too! DECK LISTS: Oswald Fiddlebender Grazilaxx Barrowin Volo, Guide to Monste…
 
Our story begins with a modest showing of new cards! In this episode, Nick and Zak look over the first few cards from Adventures In The Forgotten Realms. What are the themes? How's the power level? anything standing out as of right now? What's this about dungeons? Listen and find out! Our YouTube has videos for even more Commander content! If you l…
 
In this episode, Nick and Zak get to dive into what makes 100 card Historic Brawl FEEL like Commander, and what the format actually looks like once you put everything together. Did some decks get better? Worse? Is this a change they should make permanent? Listen and find out! And let us know what you all played for the event too! Our YouTube has vi…
 
Recently, and unexpectedly Magic: the Gathering Online got a creature type update. That update? PHYREXIA. That's right, the phyrexian creature type was retroactively added to over 200 magic cards! What does this mean for decks that already exist? What commanders get retrofitted into this new tribe? Is there any mechanical space these random cards f…
 
This week Nick and Zak had a smattering of cards for Modern Horizons 2 to go over. You can also see how we did guessing what cards would be popular from Strixhaven, and our guesses with what people will play most from MH2 itself! Spoiler, this is the worst we've done in... a while... But we're able to see some patterns... So listen in and tell us w…
 
GET READY. In this episode, Nick and Zak discuss all the spoils from last week, and WOW is it a LOT! An accelerated preview season means we get cards faster, which is great! But in the modern age (pun intended) and in this straight to modern set, almost every card has some interaction with a deck that already exists. And that's not even getting int…
 
Most people, no matter how casual, like winning games. In games of Magic that's usually the goal: defeat your opponents and claim victory. Games of Commander are a little different though. You have multiple opponents, and your chance of victory - all things being equal - is only 25% in a 4 player game vs. the normal 50% in 1v1! But what if there wa…
 
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