5 Underrated Commander Cards from Torment

5 Underrated Commander Cards From Torment

Jacob LacknerCommander

Torment has a really strange set gimmick – it is a set that emphasizes Black more than the other colors. They went pretty far in fulfilling this theme, too. There are more Black cards than normal, and fewer cards from Black’s enemy colors — White and Green. The set has 40 Black cards, 28 Blue cards, 28 Red cards, and 21 Green cards, and 21 White cards. Only Swamps appear in booster packs, no other basic lands. Even cards that aren’t technically Black often still have the word somewhere in the text box. 

So, it shouldn’t be too surprising that Torment has several Black-themed cards that are regularly played in Commander. Cabal Coffers, the Tainted land cycle, Cabal Ritual, and Mutilate are all cards you’ve probably seen on the table during a Commander game.

While the selection of non-Black cards might be somewhat limited, there are five such cards in the set that I think deserve to be played at a higher rate in Commander. 

Underrated Commander: Llawan, Cephalid Empress

Llawan, Cephalid Empress
The 1,805th Most Popular Commander on EDHRec

Llawan, Cephalid Empress stands in defiance to Torment’s Black theme. Instead, she cares about Blue! Her abilities are a little niche when you first read them. After all, she can only bounce Blue creatures and prevent your opponent from playing Blue creatures.

However, there are plenty of ways to make her abilities more potent. Have you ever wanted to dust off all those bulk cards you have that have the words, “Choose a color,” or “color word” on them? Then Llawan is the Commander for you! 

Shifting Sky can allow you to make all nonland permanents Blue, allowing Llawan to bounce everything, while cards like Swirl the Mists let you change Llawan’s effects so that they can affect cards of other colors instead.

Painter’s Servant probably isn’t in your pile of bulk cards given how useful it is in Legacy, but it also happens to combine powerfully with Llawan. Because it makes all cards Blue in all zones, it means Llawan will bounce all opposing creatures and then prevent your opponents from casting all of those creatures. This allows you to potentially lock your opponents out of the game.

In addition to using lots of cards that let you manipulate card text and card color, you’re also going to want to include some blink and flicker effects, so that Llawan can keep on bouncing creatures.

Krosan Restorer

Krosan Restorer
Played in .038% of Green Decks on EDHRec

Krosan Restorer has an awful stat-line for the cost, and she needs some set up – but she can really ramp your mana to the moon. Especially if you’ve got lands that can tap for multiple mana. 

If you’re playing a Green deck that is also good at loading the graveyard to enable threshold, you should really be playing her. Some of the more widely-played Commanders that work well with the Restorer are Sidisi and Muldrotha.

Devastating Dreams

Devastating Dreams
Played in .0032% of Red Decks on EDHRec

The “Dreams” cycle in Torment is pretty cool. All of them involve you discarding X cards to get some kind of effect. Devastating Dreams is aptly named because it can be absolutely, well….devastating. Sure, the setup is significant. You need cards in hand, and the discard is random so you can’t throw away only expendable cards. But paying two mana for a board sweeper stapled to Armageddon is pretty insane.

Obviously, this is far from a card that should be played in all Red decks. You need the right Commander. If your commander likes it when you discard cards or load the graveyard, Devastating Dreams will be right at home. Rielle, the Everwise can immediately reload your hand while raising her power, and Korvold can turn all of your sacrificed lands into +1/+1 counters and cards.

Nantuko Cultivator

Nantuko Cultivator
Played in .018% of Green Decks on EDHRec

Speaking of land-centric cards, Nantuko Cultivator gives you another one. This Insect Druid comes with a fairly unique effect for Green – it essentially lets you rummage. You can only do it with lands of course, but the Cultivator also grows the more lands you toss in the bin.

The two best generals for the Cultivator are Zask and Grist. Both of these Commanders love the graveyard and the Insect creature type. Of the two, Zask is probably the best fit, because he also likes lands. He lets you play the Cultivator from your graveyard, makes the Cultivator mill your library, and can buff your Insects. Meanwhile, Grist’s +1 ability gets better when you mill insects like the Cultivator.

Cephalid Illusionist

Cephalid Illusionist
Played in 0.016% of Blue Decks on EDHRec

The last card for today also loves the graveyard. You can pretty much ignore Cephalid Illusionist’s activated ability, what we’re really after is that triggered ability, which has been abused in various 60-card formats over the years. If you have an activated ability that can target it for free, you can mill your entire library. Lightning Greaves is played by many players, and it can enable the combo.

These days, there are plenty of ways to win when your library is out of cards, whether it’s Thassa’s Oracle, Jace Wielder of Mysteries, or Laboratory Maniac.

If you’re looking for one of those combo wins, the best way to pull that off is if your Commander is Grolnok, the Omnivore. He lets you exile the cards you mill, and then you can cast them. So if you mill your Oracle, you can cast it and the game is over.

End Step

Those are my picks for the most underrated Commander cards in Torment. Do you disagree with any of my picks? Let me know over on X!