Tipping Point: Invocations About to Pop (Apr 2/18)

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Welcome to the second installment in my Tipping Point series, which looks to explore important cards that are teetering on the verge of major price spikes due to low supply. My focus here is to try and flag cards in time for you to grab what you need for decks or get in early enough to profit.  In comparison to picks made earlier in the reprint cycle, the cards found in this series are going to a) offer less meat on the bone but b) be more likely to succeed (due to their already low supply/reprint risk). You will also notice that many of these picks will tend to be foils and promos rather than non-foils as for obvious reasons foils tend to dry up much faster than non-foils, except for the most important of staples, where regular copies may quickly follow during a spike in demand. In terms of timeline, I’ll be aiming to get you in and out of positions within a year, or setting you up to save good money on cards you might have been holding back on unnecessarily.

This week we’re looking at the Amonkhet Invocations. Perhaps the most maligned of the Masterpiece Series cards released so far, the Invocations put off many players due to their busy borders and near illegibility as game pieces.

Despite the fact that I’m personally not a fan of the borders, given my success with the Kaladesh Investions over the last year, I’ve been checking in on the Invocations to see which if any, seem likely to break out. Blood Moon currently has the lowest inventory of the Invocations in North America and is very near a tipping point of it’s own, but at $140 buy-in, the % returns are tough to predict from here forward given how popular the M25 foils may end up. (I’d guess Blood Moon ends up near $200 given enough time.)

Without further ado  here are my picks for cards at the tipping point heading into early spring.

1) Blood Moon (Invocation)

Current Price: $140
Target Price/Timeline: $200+ (6-12+ months)

Indisputably the most important Modern card in the Invocation list, Blood Moon also sees play in both Legacy and EDH as well. This should mark this version as the most durably popular of the Invocations, but there are a few cautionary notes. Firstly, the card was a lot more exciting near it’s lows around $90. The other factor is that this card has a small pile of competing versions, including foils from 8th, 9th, Modern Masters, Modern Masters 2017 and M25. That really is a lot of competition, but the reality is that the inventory has been draining hard on this version. Given that word on the street is that Hour of Devestation is already out of print on low demand, Invocations from that set are likely to be very tough to restock moving forward and this could be contributing to the low stock.

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2) No Mercy (Invocation)

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No Mercy
Current Price: $30
Target Price/Timeline: $50+ (6-12 months)

Surprisingly, the other Invocation representing very low supply is black enchantment No Mercy, a powerful EDH card that has only ever been printed in foil (or otherwise) one other time, way back in Urza’s Legacy. EDHRec has the card reported in 4000+ decks, which suggests moderate demand, but it’s possible the card is underplayed by black mages overall. In contrast to Blood Moon, this is a cheap card that has only seen two foils in twenty years so it should be a strong option for acquisition given the solid price floor, broad utility in EDH and good possible upside.

3) Maelstrom Pulse (Invocation)

Maelstrom Pulse

Current Price: $55
Target Price/Timeline: $80+ (3-6 months)

Maelstrom Pulse is another card with multiple competing foil printings (Alara Reborn, Modern Masters &  GP Promo) but with Jund back on the menu in Modern this season, all of them are on the rise. This version can currently be found between $55 and $60 and I can see it easily cresting $80 before the end of the year given how small the supply already is. As with Blood  Moon there is some moderate EDH demand to backstop this play.

4) Diabolic Intent (Invocations)

Diabolic Intent

Current Price: $32
Target Price/Timeline: $50+ (3-6 months)

This card may not be on your radar but that’s probably because it’s only EVER seen one other printing, with the original fifteen years ago in Planeshift. OG foils already go for $65+ and the odds of WoTC reprinting this again anytime soon are low given their general lack of interest in efficient tutors. Supply on the Invocations is already low, the black cards are the best looking of the set, and EDHREC.com reports 7000 decks running the card already, which as with No Mercy, is probably too low. I see no reason to hold off on picking a few of these up to add to decks and wait for the near inevitable payoff.

 

5) Hazoret the Fervent

Hazoret the Fervent

Current Price: $140 ($80 in the EU…for now)
Target Price/Timeline: $140+ (6-12 months)

We’re late on this one. Of course Hazoret was a major part of Standard this year, but it’s not Standard players that recently cleaned this version of the card out closer to $60. Those purchases were almost certainly made on the assumption that this will be an occasional player in Jund builds for Modern for some time to come. I’d pass on the card at the current North American prices, but you can still source it closer to $80 in Europe, so I’ve picked up a few on the assumption that the Invocation can hold $100+ moving forward. There is some possibility that copies will enter the market when Hazoret rotates out of Standard this fall, but I wouldn’t hold your breath on a major price drop for this version.

That’s it for this edition of Tipping Point. Expect me to check in with new editions once a month to keep you guys on the cutting edge. Take care and have fun!

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