November 28, 2023

Best five-color commanders in MTG EDH format


The color identity rule is what differentiates Commander decks from other formats. In 60-card formats like Modern, there’s no limit on the suits you can play. A deck can be mostly blue and white and run an off-suit card to attack edge cases.

This is not the case in Commander. Decks can only run cards that are in the legendary creature’s color identity. This doesn’t just include mana symbols in the mana value, but all symbols in the card text.

There are 33 five-color commanders in the format. They have access to the largest pool of cards. Unhindered access to any legal card in Commander leads to some homogenization between five-suit decks. But, the best of these options supports a more interesting gaming experience than jamming the best 99 cards into a pile.

Here are the best five-color legendary creatures in Commander.

Najeela, the Flower Blade

Picture via WOTC

Najeela has the most linear game plan of the bunch – it’s a winning combo piece on a stick. By sitting at any table with Najeela, you will most likely become public enemy number one and for good reason. This three-mana creature wins the game through infinite combat steps.

The combo is done in several different ways. Cryptolith Rite turns every creature into mana dorks. Use tokens created by Najeela to pay for her activated ability and gain additional battle steps.

A powerful Najeela deck will execute dozens of redundant combos that can win the game out of nowhere. It’s a powerful cEDH deck that can play well in lower power tables with a dedicated roster of warriors or allies.

Kenrith, the Returned King

Image via WotC

Along with Golos, Tireless Pilgrim bans in Commander, which leaves Kenrith as the best five-suit “good thing” card. Kenrith has five activated abilities that make him an autonomous engine. He can draw cards, give haste to creatures, grow creatures, gain life, and revive himself.

Kenrith does not rely on any particular strategy so players can use their imaginations when creating their builds. From group hugs to +1/+1 counters, Kenrith is capable of anything. You can learn parts of its color identity or become a full-fledged Mythic Rare tribal.

The Ur-Dragon

The Ur-Dragon

Tribal Dragon is an exciting creature archetype. Dragons are expensive and have flashy effects. For players interested in showing off and becoming the center of the table, The Ur-Dragon is perfect.

There are two main commanders for Dragon decks. Tiamat is the best budget option but doesn’t provide much besides a great body and tutoring. The Ur-Dragon provides cost reduction and deceives creatures on the battlefield.

The Eminence ability makes dragons cost one mana less. The attack trigger is another effective way to bring more than one dragon onto the battlefield in one turn. The Ur-Dragon is hard to throw, but all you have to do is throw it once and win the game shortly after.

Morophon, the unlimited

Morophon, unlimited MTG modern horizons
Image via WotC

Morophon was printed in modern horizons to solve the problem of niche tribal strategies not having a synergistic option as a commander. This colorless creature with a five-color identity was designed to support any tribe, from elephant to kithkin.

The Anthem +1/+1 effect is nice, but the key element of Morophon’s kit is cost reduction. This helps manage creature color costs. The ability mitigates any potential mana issues for three-, four-, or five-color lists.

Things look up for multicolored creatures whose mana value consists mostly of colored mana. Morophon can increase these creatures by four mana at a single cost.

The first ribbon

Image via WotC

Slivers give all other Slivers an ability. The first ribbon has a waterfall and gives your other ribbons a waterfall. Once The First Sliver is resolved, your lead should snowball into a clean win. Each Sliver that enters the battlefield strengthens your forces.

It’s a simple game plan. Get your five colors online then start The First Sliver. Constant cascading triggers will take it from there.

Niv-Mizzet reborn

Niv-Mizzet reborn

Many five-color Commanders can end up as generic decks with a green ramp leading to commonly played Mythic Rares. Niv-Mizzet Reborn requires you to build a creative deck. Niv-Mizzet Reborn wants to play mostly two-color spells.

In spark war, Niv-Mizzet became the Living Guildpact. To represent this, when it enters the battlefield, you can get any two-color spell from the top 10 cards for each pair of guild colors. You want this ability to find as many spells as possible.

Many slots found in most decks must be occupied by two-color options. This leads to running cards that are powerful, but not usually run in other decks. Here are some cards that fit into the Niv-Mizzet theme.

  • Removal: despark, assassin’s trophy, war casualties
  • Draw: Hydroid Krasis, Prismari Command, Highlight
  • Counters: Izzet Charm, Counterflux, Ionize
  • Creatures: Uro, TItan of nature’s wrath; Klothys, God of Destiny; The Scarab God.

All images via Wizards of the Coast.

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