Magic: The Gathering Card of the Day – Mystic Barrier


Mystic Barrier Commander

Mystic Barrier affects only what players and Planeswalkers each player may attack with creatures he or she controls. It doesn’t affect what players may be targeted by spells or abilities or other interactions.

Magic: The Gathering Commander (2013 Edition) Release Notes 
Compiled by Matt Tabak, with contributions from Laurie Cheers, Carsten Haese, Eli Shiffrin, Zoe Stephenson, and Thijs van Ommen

Document last modified September 26, 2013

DOC Download Links: 
English | Français | Deutsch | Italiano | 日本語 | Español

The Release Notes include information concerning the release of a new Magic: The Gathering set, as well as a collection of clarifications and rulings involving that set’s cards. It’s intended to make playing with the new cards more fun by clearing up the common misconceptions and confusion inevitably caused by new mechanics and interactions. As future sets are released, updates to the Magic rules may cause some of this information to become outdated. If you can’t find the answer you’re looking for here, please contact us at

The “General Notes” section includes release information and explains the mechanics and concepts in the set.

The “Card-Specific Notes” section contains answers to the most important, most common, and most confusing questions players might ask about cards in the set. Items in the “Card-Specific Notes” section include full card text for your reference. Not all cards in the set are listed. Notably, none of the cards that have been released in previous Magic products are listed.


Release Information

The Magic: The Gathering Commander (2013 Edition) release consists of five different game packs. Each game pack contains a deck with 100 different cards plus three oversized premium commander cards. The five decks are “Evasive Maneuvers,” “Eternal Bargain,” “Mind Seize,” “Power Hungry,” and “Nature of the Beast.”

Release date: November 1, 2013
Release events will be held November 1–3, 2013. Go to to find an event or store near you.

New Cards and Format Legality

There are fifty-one cards within the Magic: The Gathering Commander (2013 Edition) decks that are completely new to the Magic game. These cards are legal for play in the Vintage and Legacy formats only. They aren’t legal for play in the Standard or Modern formats.

The other cards in this release are legal for play in any format that already allows those cards. That is, appearing in this release doesn’t change a card’s legality in any format.

For more information about Magic formats, please visit For information about the format legality of a specific card, please visit, search for the card, and check the “Sets & Legality” tab.


Created and popularized by fans, the Commander variant is usually played in casual Free-for-All multiplayer games, although two-player games are also popular. Each player starts at 40 life, and each player’s deck is headed by a legendary creature designated as that deck’s commander. A player’s choice of commander determines which other cards can be played in the deck.

A recommended banned list for the Commander format is maintained by the rules committee at, not by Wizards of the Coast. On Magic Online, the Commander format follows that banned list.

Commander Deck Construction

Commander decks are exactly 100 cards, including the deck’s commander.
The deck’s commander must be a legendary creature.
Commander is a “singleton” format. That is, other than basic lands, each card must have a different English name.
A card can’t be included in your deck if any mana symbol in its mana cost or rules text is a color not in your commander’s color identity (see below). A card also can’t be included in your deck if it has a color indicator defining it to be a color not in your commander’s color identity.
A commander’s color identity includes its colors, as defined by its mana cost or color indicator, and also the colors of any colored mana symbols in its rules text.
Color identity is established before the game begins and doesn’t change during the game, even if your commander becomes a different color.
The colors of colored mana symbols found only in reminder text aren’t part of a commander’s color identity.
A land card with one or more basic land types can’t be included in your deck if it could produce mana of a color not in your commander’s color identity.
During the game, if mana that isn’t a color in your commander’s color identity would be added to your mana pool, that much colorless mana is added to your mana pool instead.

Using Your Commander

Commanders play a prominent role in games, often appearing on the battlefield multiple times.

Your commander begins the game in the command zone, a game area created for the Commander format and now also used for nontraditional Magic cards (including Vanguard, Plane, and Scheme cards) and for emblems created by Planeswalkers. The other ninety-nine cards are shuffled and become your library.
You may cast your commander from the command zone. Each time you do this, it costs 2 Mana more to cast for each time you previously cast it from the command zone that game.
If your commander would be put into your graveyard from anywhere or be exiled from anywhere, you may choose to put it into the command zone instead.
In addition to the normal rules regarding winning and losing the game, the Commander format has one other rule: A player who has been dealt 21 or more combat damage by the same commander over the course of the game loses the game.

Players should keep track of combat damage dealt to them by each commander over the course of the game.
This rule includes a player’s own commander, which can deal combat damage to its owner if the commander is controlled by another player or if combat damage gets redirected to that player.

Alternative Mulligan Rule

The Commander variant uses an alternative mulligan rule: Each time a player takes a mulligan, rather than shuffling his or her entire hand of cards into his or her library, that player exiles any number of cards from his or her hand. Then the player draws a number of cards equal to one less than the number of cards he or she exiled this way. Once a player keeps an opening hand, that player shuffles all cards he or she exiled this way into his or her library.

Leaving the Game

Unlike two-player games, multiplayer games can continue after a player leaves the game (because that player lost the game or conceded).

When a player leaves the game, all permanents, spells, and other cards owned by that player also leave the game.
If that player controlled any abilities or copies of spells that were waiting to resolve, they cease to exist.
If that player controlled any permanents owned by another player, the effects that gave control of them to the player who left end. If this doesn’t give control of them to a different player (perhaps because they entered the battlefield under the control of the player who left), they’re exiled.

Rule Change: The “Planeswalker Uniqueness Rule” and the “Legend Rule”

Two rule changes introduced with the Magic 2014 core set impact how cards in this release function.

Under the previous rules, if there were two or more legendary permanents with the same name on the battlefield or two or more Planeswalkers that share a subtype (such as “Jace”) on the battlefield, they would all be put into their owners’ graveyards as a state-based action. These rules have changed. The new rules are as follows:

704.5j If a player controls two or more Planeswalkers that share a Planeswalker type, that player chooses one of them, and the rest are put into their owners’ graveyards. This is called the “Planeswalker uniqueness rule.”

704.5k If a player controls two or more legendary permanents with the same name, that player chooses one of them, and the rest are put into their owners’ graveyards. This is called the “legend rule.”

Notably, if another player controls a creature that’s a copy of your commander, neither that creature nor your commander is affected. They both remain on the battlefield.

Oversized Commanders

Each Magic: The Gathering Commander (2013 Edition) game pack comes with three oversized premium commander cards that correspond to traditional cards in the game pack. Only one of these can be the deck’s commander during a given game.

You must also have the traditional Magic card version of your commander.
When the commander is in a public zone, such as the command zone or the battlefield, you may substitute the oversized card for the traditional Magic card.
If your commander is in a hidden zone, such as your library or hand, use the traditional Magic card.
The oversized cards are only for fun and aren’t required for Commander game play.


Related posts

Leave a Comment

Serpentor's Lair