Category Archives: Spoiler Coverage

Eternal Masters Spoiler Coverage

ADVERTISEMENT:


Eternal Masters 

Release Date: June 17, 2016

eternalmasters-1-825x460

This promises to be another small print-run set that makes cards a little more available for a little while if not more affordable in the long run. With boosters costing an awful lot and the draftability of the set unclear, this may end up doing little more than offering foils of cards that haven’t been foil before. That’s not that much of a problem, frankly, if it means people can get $100+ cards for the price of a booster and have copies of cards they want for legacy and EDH without wrecking prices. Modern Masters and Modern Masters 2 impacted prices, but they weren’t enough to keep them down forever. Here’s everything in those sets that ended up more than the projected $10-$15 per booster pack.

Untitled

Untitled

People who are worried about Force of Will should have some perspective. Tarmogoyf is lower than it would have been without intervention but that doesn’t mean it’s a lot lower than it ever was. Printed in both Modern Masters sets, Tarmogoyf is a 4-of in a lot of decks and that means demand will never really be soaked up.

Untitled

It isn’t the big money cards we need to worry about losing our investments in, so don’t sell those Force of Wills, unless you like the new art better because you’re wrong.

We had most of the cards anyone is going to care about spoiled in one shot, so let’s talk about it.

Force of Will

Jason Alt – This is currently $80 and it’s predominantly played in Legacy and Vintage, formats no one seems to want to play these days. This was the first Mythic spoiled but it isn’t the most expensive mythic in the set. I imagine this set will have a small, marginal impact on price. I don’t think the art is that great, but it’s better than the judge foils, which are the real losers here. If you have Forces, probably save them because they’ll recover, especially since the old art is better.  This is this set’s Dark Confidant or V. Clique.

Mana Crypt

Jason Alt –  The book promo is $200 and the judge foil is $225. That’s a difference of $25, $25 being the amount I sold my Mana Crypt for in 2004. Daggers.

This is this set’s Tarmogoyf for sure. So many EDH and Vintage players want these that I can’t imagine demand won’t soak up supply. However, the media promo and judge reward foil are the only way to get these currently. Will the set foil be $200 or will the set non-foil? Star City is betting the non-foil will be $80. Having an inexpensive basic set version should help shelter the value of the media promo and judge foil. The judge foil should also enforce somewhat of a ceiling on the set foil since there are so few judge foils. It’s going to be weird to see what happens, here. Will the flood of cheaper non-foils pull down the price of the media promo, or will the more “pimp,” rarer version maintain value?. I personally think there won’t be enough Eternal Masters copies to crater the price of the older promos. Still, with more people jamming Mana Crypt, the rules committee is going to take a second look at this card, now, and an EDH ban would hurt the price a ton. It’s already restricted in EDH, after all.

Sneak Attack 

Jason Alt – Pre-selling for $30 on SCG, Sneak Attack likely loses some value even at mythic. It will probably recover from where it ends up, especially given that copies disappear 4-at-a-time for Legacy and EDH players want this card and will now be able to get it more affordably. The older copies should be able to maintain $45 in the face of the reprinting. A comparable card from Modern Masters is Sword of Fire and Ice in my opinion. That had a set printing, a judge foil and a Modern Masters printing and its growth stopped but it mostly maintained its price. Sword appeals more broadly but I think the price trajectories are a good corollary if not the prices themselves. Let’s look at just the Modern Masters printing.

Untitled

Supply never ends up enough to satisfy demand on Masters-set mythics.

Necropotence 

Jason Alt – This is mythic because it would ruin Limited otherwise. It’s powerful enough, sure, but it’s not expensive enough to be mythic. This probably will drive the already-reasonable price of Necropotence down, which is fine, but the price was never a barrier to begin with seeing as how there were plenty of Ice age and 5th Edition copies easily accessible. This “feels” mythic but doesn’t do much to sell $15 booster packs. SCG wants $10 for these despite Ice Age copies which look cooler being that price. This was already on a downward trajectory before the reprinting, Legacy can’t play this and not all EDH decks want this. I bet this loses money.

Balance

Jason Alt – Who is playing Balance? This is a $4 mythic at pre-order and I don’t even know if it will maintain that. This needs to be mythic for its power level, but this certainly wasn’t reprinted for availability purposes. The set needs cheap mythics and it’s getting them.

Dack Fayden

Jason Alt – This is a great reprint. This all but rules it out of Conspiracy 2, which is fine. Vintage and EDH players alike love this card and this is a chance for more foils to hit the market, lowering the barrier to jamming a foil one in your cube. The non-foils are $25 and that seems about right. They are $35 now but are on a downward trajectory. I think this is the kind of card you want in this set.

Karakas

Jason Alt – Craig Wescoe spoiled this card because of course he did. This is a reprint everyone saw coming. Legacy demand for a while saw this sit at $30-$50 until everyone realized you didn’t autolose to Emrakul if you had this. Knight of the Reliquary decks used this to great effect, putting Knight in with Show and Tell and then using Knight to get Karakas before they could untap and swing with Emrakul. Currently almost $200, Legends Karakas should take a bit of a hit. Demand is 100% Legacy and Vintage (mostly Legacy) due to how banned this is in EDH. The judge foils should take a bit of a hit due to competition from set foils, but not too much of a hit. This is pre-selling for $80, which is less than half of its current retail. I expect that to be a bit too low, but not enough that I’m a buyer at $80. I think even at mythic, this should do a decent job of satisfying current demand, especially since it isn’t run much as a multiple the way Goyf is. This is good news for people who want to run Mangara D&T I guess.

 

Chrome Mox 

Jason Alt – The Modern banning really hurt the price of this card. Despite being very solid and having the word “mox” in the title, this is a mere $20 due to its unavailability for use in Modern. This isn’t used much in EDH. Legacy combo uses this but Mox Diamond probably gets roughly the same amount of Legacy use and this also has to compete with Mox Opal. Mythic rarity will help the price sliding too much but this is pretty inexpensive for a reason.

Worldgorger Dragon

Jason Alt – Every set needs a Comet Storm, I guess. Not sure why it’s always red that gets it. Prepare to lose a portion of the $2.50 you have invested in this card.

Jace, the Mind Sculptor

Jason Alt – Star City wants $80 for this and that seems reasonable. I imagine this follows the price trajectory of Vendillion Clique or Dark Confidant. If this is ever unbanned in Modern, I expect this to follow the price trajectory of Dark Confidant when they announced Modern and go nuts. I’m not buying an $80 lottery ticket and betting on an unban, but this is Jace and more printings slow his growth but that’s mostly all. This is OK in EDH, it’s in a few Legacy decks and it’s banned in Modern. The price is still nuts because this is one of the most iconic Magic cards of the modern era and the price is always going to be higher than we can justify with mere data. I am not worried about this tanking the current value.

Vampiric Tutor 

Jason Alt – Vampiric Tutor is sicko in EDH but being printed at mythic means we won’t get as many copies as we need. Currently a little under $40 for the Visions version, the real loser here is the $100 judge foil. Either the set foil ends up way higher than the judge foil, or this gets pushed to around $20-$25 in the short term. Either way, I’m hoping this gets cheap enough to actually help EDH out.

Enlightened Tutor

Jason Alt – Currently at $16 as a Mirage uncommon and pre-selling for that much on SCG, I think this is due to fall more than SCG predicts, or they’re hoping they can pre-sell a bunch before the price drops. However, I think this could recover. Kira, Great Glass Spinner was about $15 before Modern Masters reprinted it and after spending some time around $9, it’s $15 again.  It’s hard to guess if there are more copies of Kira as a rare in Betrayers of Kamigawa or of Tutor as an uncommon in Mirage and 6th Edition. What I do know is that I expect the price of this to come back to where it is now, or close to it. This will only help availability without hurting price. I like it.

Sylvan Library 

Jason Alt – I think this should bring down 4th and 5th Edition versions and maybe impact the Commander’s Arsenal foils a small amount in the short term. ’93/’94 is what’s propping up the Legends version and this won’t affect that at all. This is a good reprint and putting it a rare means it will make it widely available for EDH to snatch up all of these copies and Legacy to take the rest. SCG wants basically current retail for pre-orders and I expect that it can get back to that price soon.

Control Magic

Jason Alt – This art is great, which won’t take the sting out of opening a card that should be an uncommon in the booster your LGS charged you $20 for. The set needs bulk rares and this is a P1P1 in Limited, so I guess we all understand why this is in here. I’ll be replacing my current versions with this because of the art.

Entomb

Jason Alt – SCG wants $16 for this and they’ll probably get it. Entomb has shrugged off quite a few reprintings but this may be the one that does it in. Odyssey versions are twice what SCG wants for this version. I half expect it to go up from $16, but the Graveborn foil hurts the upside for set foils, and I don’t know if this can climb to $30+ or if the Odyssey versions can maintain that price. You certainly don’t have to worry about counterfeiting with the new versions, and the art is better. We’ll see what happens. If this goes down in the short term, I may look at it because the pre-order price is half of current retail and that’s not the case for the rest of these cards.

Toxic Deluge

Jason Alt – There is no question this brings the price down even more and SCG agrees, pre-selling for a mere $6. The only real question is what will the foil settle at? I have some Deluges so I’m eating it on this reprint, but I guess I don’t hate to see it. Commander 2014 had some real gas in it.

Diminishing Returns

Jason Alt – An example of diminishing returns is paying over $10 for a booster pack and getting a bulk rare.

Maze of Ith 

Jason Alt – This likely won’t stay at the $20 SCG is asking for it. This card is too good in both EDH and Legacy to be $20, though the downtick in popularity of Knight of the Reliquary decks in Legacy has caused the card to lose value over time even before this reprinting. Foils will compete with the judge foils, but honestly this is a card that could go up a tad, but will need a change in the Legacy paradigm to do so.

Gamble

Jason Alt – I expect this card to go down in price significantly. This isn’t bought as a 4-of the way Sneak Attack is and it’s not at mythic in this set. This should satisfy a lot of the demand for this wacky card, although the old art is probably going to be more popular. Pre-order is down to $10, and that just might hold.

Deathrite Shaman

ADVERTISEMENT:


Jason Alt – I have a big box of these and I was waiting for Legacy and EDH demand to help the price recover after the Modern banning. The SCG pre-order price of $5 makes me sad, but it’s probably accurate. There is little demand for this card compared to a few years ago. Legacy elves loves it and EDH probably uses it less than it should. I hate to see this reprinted before I could recoup my investment. Luckily, when Shaman first spiked, I sold enough copies to break even so all the copies I’m sitting on were free, but I’d rather get $10 for them than $3. Them’s the breaks.

Sensei’s Divining Top

Jason Alt – If being uncommon in a fairly recent set and being in a $12 precon weren’t enough to keep this card under $25, hopefully the few extra copies this adds to the market can bring it down a smidge. Still, despite EDH wanting these one at a time, Legacy wants these 2-4 at a time and that’s going to mean that we need to cough up 2-4 copies or every one new deck built. This shouldn’t hurt the price too much, but the old art is way better. This needed to be rare.

Wasteland

Jason Alt – One of the first cards spoiled, we’ve had a lot of time to debate the effect of the reprinting on the price of Wasteland. Pretty good in EDH, a staple in Legacy and Vintage and printed originally at uncommon, Wasteland is pre-selling for $60 on SCG. That seems a tab high, but with boxes at $250, maybe not. Every new Legacy deck will eat multiple copies meaning demand is likely poised to soak a ton of the supply up. $60 is higher than the current retail for the Tempest version, though, so I’m not sure what SCG is banking on. With judge foils, expeditions and other ways to get this foil, the set foils will likely be just another version, and probably the least popular of all of them. I think there’s downside at $60.

Goblin Charbelcher

Jason Alt – Not all of them have to be gems. This won’t be that good in Limited, and price wasn’t the reason to reprint this nor was availability. This gives us more foils, I guess, but all this did was stop the older version from inching up in price the way a card you invested in does, ideally. This is fine but I’m not a buyer, even at $3.

5/25/16

They haven’t let up on revealing cards since yesterday and there are a ton of them. I sort of hate them making us twiddle our thumbs for the months since they spoiled Force and Wasteland and then vomiting everything on us in 72 hours, but what do I know?

Maelstrom Wanderer

Jason Alt – I think this actually will affect prices and here’s why. The Commander’s Arsenal foils are trash. It’s a different foiling process and it sucks. I hated my foil Commander’s Arsenal Maelstrom Wanderer so much that I switched to non-foil Japanese and the rest of the deck is foil, that’s how much screw that foiling process. This gives us a shot at nicer-looking foils. If this doesn’t drag the price of Commander’s Arsenal foils down, what will happen is we’ll see a big divergence in price as people want these overwhelmingly. The art’s even way better. I feel like these are factors that people busting foils of this won’t take into account and I like these foils if they end up being priced beneath the price of Commander’s Arsenal foils initially.

Baleful Strix

Jason Alt – Foils of this are likely to exceed $50 which is pretty crazy. This didn’t need another reprint, per se, but I’m fine with it getting one and getting copies into the hands of players. The dip from WotC having to overprint Mind Seize decks has mostly ironed out and we could use some more supply. This is good in some EDH decks as well as quite a few Legacy decks and it’s a card we want in players’ hands. Having a chance to get these in foil is all upside.

Shardless Agent

Jason Alt – Well, this burns. I have been socking away Japanese copies because those were the best you could get and now you can get Japanese foils. I’m likely to lose  bit of value, but I think the price will recover mostly. This is a very good card in Legacy. It’s not as great in EDH but I still jam it in my Maelstrom Wanderer deck for some reason. I always end up hitting a mana rock, but every once in a while I’ll Maelstrom into Etherium-Horn Sorcerer into Bloodbraid into Shardless Agent into Coiling Oracle. I call it the Temur Ultimatum. Foils of this are likely to be pretty close to what they are for Baleful Strix and that price is likely to climb over time, so maybe trade for those foils if you can.

Nevinyrral’s Disk

Jason Alt – This gets a non-zero amount of use in EDH, but this won’t bring prices down. Alpha, Beta and Unlimited copies are still run in ’93/’94 and are still old so this will just crater the 4th edition copies and such, which is fine since now people can have a good-looking foil copy because that FTV copy is trash, and only $7.

Ichorid

Jason Alt – They really want reanimator and possibly dredge (it looks like the black/green archetype will be elves, though) to work in Limited. Ichorid is a sweet card and this is a chance to get more foils of it, so that’s cool. Ichorid is currently about $12, down from its historical high of $30+ and I can see this slipping down a bit more. This is exactly the price Divinity of Pride was and that’s now $3, though a second reprinting may be what’s kept it down. Still, now it’s Divinity of the Fall and Modern Masters was all it took to drive its price into the dirt. Will Ichorid fall as far as fast? Doubtful because every new deck needs 2-4 copies vs. every new EDH deck only needing one Divinity of Pride. Demand will soak up copies much faster. We’ll see what happens, but I think he $5 SCG wants right now is pretty close.

Hymn to Tourach

Jason Alt – Foil Hymn is going to be a very sexy prospect. This shouldn’t hurt the already dirt-cheap Fallen Empires copies but the prospect of getting foil copies is exciting. This is the same art as FTV:20 but better foiling process. I expect these to potentially stay close to the $7 the FTV copies are.

Regal Force

Jason Alt – This is a sicko card-drawing machine and EDH and Elf decks have made this a $15 card, a price SCG expects to be cut in half by this set. I could see this slowly climbing, but it’s not a 4-of in Legacy like Ichorid which means I expect it to end up below where Ichorid ends up despite having EDH applicability that Ichorid doesn’t have.

Unexpectedly Absent

Jason Alt – SCG only wants $1 for this guy, which is all the old copy went for. This is a good card but it’s also played in about 600 of the 21,000 white decks on EDHREC. This seems too powerful to be a bulk rare, but them’s the times we live in.

Dualcaster Mage

Jason Alt – This card is fetch. As in, I wish they’d stop trying to make it happen. They decide which cards become judge foils long before players start playing with the cards so they made Dualcaster Mage hoping people would play it in Legacy and EDH and pair it with cards like Heat Shimmer and there were no takers. This seems to be in a cycle of Commander set reprints and Toxic Deluge is basically the only one we’ve seen so far (unless you count Baleful Strix, which I don’t) which isn’t a bulk rare. Oh well.

Chain Lightning

Jason Alt – This is a great example of a reprint that will enfranchise players. The Reserved List isn’t going away. You can whine about how you can’t afford Volcanic Island or you can build burn and play Legacy until you can trade into the deck you want. This was basically the only thing in a serviceable burn list that cost anything unless you’re playing with Goblin Guides. This also gives us better-looking foils which should stay around the $15 people want for the ugly Premium deck version.

Cabal Therapy

Jason Alt – Basically everything that was true of Chain Lightning is also true of this, except Cabal Therapy doesn’t really slot into any reasonable Legacy decks. Nic Fit and Sam Black’s Zombardment are both decks I’ve run in Legacy and gotten away with cheaply(ish) but that was because I had dual lands from 2004. This isn’t going to enfranchise people to the same extent that a cheap Chain Lightning is, and Cabal Therapy has a lot more printings and yet is almost the same price, meaning there is a lot more demand which should help stabilize the price. I think this will diverge in price from Chain Lightning a bit, but there’s no real need to go that in depth on an uncommon that has foil printings already, including a sexy set foil.

Rorix Bladewing

Jason Alt – And you worried they wouldn’t have anything to pair with Sneak Attack in Limited. Bulk rare.

Vindicate

Jason Alt – I went over what would happen to the price if this ended up in Commander 2015 and I think what I said then applies now. Vindicate has been seeing a decline in demand of late and EDH hasn’t fully picked up the slack. SCG wants $10 here and I have an odd feeling that $10 is too much for Vindicate. It used to be much better than it is.

Bloodbraid Elf

Jason Alt – Something is keeping this at $3 despite being banned in Modern. Will that same thing keep this above $3 going forward? I expect it to dip in the short term and I’m not touching them at the bottom, but you can if you think these can hit $3 again. Don’t pre-order them from SCG or you’ll only save a cent.

Mystical Tutor

ADVERTISEMENT:


Jason Alt – This is currently $8 and a big reason why is a Legacy ban. This is a chance to get foil copies that aren’t the ugly FTV foiling, but those are only $20ish so there isn’t even a ton of upside on the foils. This is just going to get more copies into the hands of EDH players, which is fine with me.

5/26/16

Void

Jason Alt- Sets need bulk rares. This bulk rare happens to win games in Limited. I actually wonder why I have never tried to play this in EDH… It doesn’t matter, this is so cheap already that the reprint is almost an insult. It sure will be fun to draft, though. Ideally you take a $75 foil rare and someone passes this to you.

Wrath of God

Jason Alt – Half of the people think this means Damnation is definitely in the set, the other half think this means Damnation is definitely not in the set. Seriously, if they don’t print Damnation here, where even can they do it? They have to know that EDH needs Damnation to be affordable. If you have Damnations, I’d say to sell them, but I don’t think we’re ever going to get that reprint.

I almost forgot to talk about Wrath. Um, it’s been printed a lot. Now it will be cheaper.

Call the Skybreaker

Jason Alt – I remember that Standard RW splashing GBU deck called “Spanish Inquisition” that ran this as a finisher. Good times. That wasn’t enough to make its price high enough that a Commander 2015 reprinting didn’t make it bulk. This doesn’t help, but I want to play this in Limited.

Giant Solifuge

Jason Alt – This card is better than you think it is. It’s a bulk rare, though.

Natural Order

Jason Alt – This is the kind of reprint I was waiting for Green to get. Very cool. Mythic rarity means it likely recovers from its price dip, but lower demand than we used to see could mean that this will shatter the illusion cast by price memory and price this card more “fairly” which wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest. I could see this getting cheaper, but at a certain point, that activates new demand from people who had previously considered this unreasonably expensive which likely buoys the price a bit. We’ll see where it equilibrates.

Green Sun’s Zenith

Jason Alt – Weird to see both Natural Order and Green Sun’s Zenith in a set where there are no real good targets, yet. Emperor Crocodile, I guess. Regal Force? Craterhoof reprint incoming? Who knows. What I do know is that it was silly for this card to be $9 last week and it will be even sillier next week. Expect a drop.

Sinkhole

Jason Alt- Normally I hate rarity changes, but good on them for not making this common. These will get soaked up four-at-a-time by Legacy which should help its price from sliding down too much, but this can’t soak up such a high percentage of the value in the set so we could see this get pushed way down, at least initially. Someone wants me to make Deadguy Ale, it would seem. I don’t expect this card to hold $30+ and we could see the price, well, sink.

Isochron Scepter

Jason Alt – This is a good card and more players should play it if they want to, but it wasn’t exactly super scarce, having been printed at uncommon and not exactly being a staple the way Sensei’s Top is. Still, $6 for an uncommon that was in a duel deck shows how popular this is. I love this card in EDH and I even toyed with trying to make this work in Modern. Research//Development, yo! Ultimately, this could be fun in Limited but it requires them to print really good cards at uncommon and common, which they might do. I could see this shedding a few bucks off of its price, but price reductions for this card tend not to stick. Maybe trade for these when you’re convinced they’re done losing.

Karmic Guide

Jason Alt – This is a fine reprint. It’s a card that used to be ridiculously expensive due to the set it was in and that has been controlled by reprinting. This could bring the foil price down a bit since there aren’t many foils from Urza’s Legacy and judge foils don’t add many copies, either. I expect the non-foil price to be mostly fine and I expect foils to take a pretty sizeable hit, although Legacy foils are still way hotter. The first reprinting of a card always hurts more than subsequent ones and we’re used to seeing this get reprinted and it’s like $3 right now so who even cares?

Price of Progress

Jason Alt – I expect the price of Price of Progress to take a hit. This will give us better foils, so the Premium series printings should take a hit in price since these are better foiling (although worse art, mostly) and being uncommon should squash prices for at least a year, if not forever. Good reprint – Legacy burn should be dirt cheap so people stop whining about the Reserved List and just sleeve up a deck to go jam with.

Goblin Trenches

Jason Alt – I can dig bulk rares that absolutely turn Limited into a 1-sided bloodbath. I used to play this in Extended and it’s a beating. It’s also a bulk rare, so that’s a thing.

Argothian Enchantress

Jason Alt- Shroud means this is the gold standard for enchantresses. Scarcity means it’s worth its weight in gold. This has been $15-$20 basically forever. New foils means the judge foils lose value. New non-foil copies at Mythic might not be the beating to the price that we may think. It all depends, though. I think people are ready to soak up every Force of Will. I’m not so convinced about people being poised for every copy of this card. Legacy Enchantress wants multiple copies, but I think most of this will be EDH decks taking 1 copy at a time and that will be slow. I think the price sinks and may never recover.

Sulfuric Vortex

Jason Alt – Pulling pants down with this in Extended a few short years ago (Like 6 or whatever, but, give me a break, I’ve been playing since 1996) makes me wish we could use this in Modern. Not sure this can even go down much from $1.50, but it’s going to try.

Winter Orb

Jason Alt – So they re-added the “if it’s untapped” clause. This isn’t just card face errata, this is functionality errata. They are changing how the card works back. That’s amazing. This is also like a $5 card before the reprinting. However, this is the first opportunity (unless I missed something) for this to be foil, which means the market could dictate something crazy for the foil. I think if this dips to like $3.50 and someone wants a 2x multiplier, I’m a buyer.

5/27/16 – This is the end

Mother of Runes

Jason Alt – This is a chance to get these foil and the fact that this was switched to rare means it won’t mess up the price too much. This is a staple and I like the new art (albeit less than last time) so foils of this are welcome. The FNM foil with the old art is $30 and this should drag that down a bit, although not a ton necessarily.  This is welcome and with the non-foil around $5, printing this at rare means it should hold or at least rebound. Good news all around.

Swords to Plowshares

Jason Alt – I expect this to basically follow the same trajectory as Hymn to Tourach with respect to foils. I think these foils will be desired above the weird FTV foils so there is upside here since the FTV price will inform the market but preference will diverge the prices.

Brago, King Eternal

Jason Alt – An EDH staple, foils are a mere $15 on this guy and that would be gone up over time, but this should make the price plateau for a while if not go down. This is a bulk rare with a $15 foil but this signals that Brago is truly dead by the time Conspiracy 2 rolls around. If we do get Brago in Conspiracy 2, it will be a new Brago with new abilities, which would be sweet. This is a popular commander and foils will start at $15 but they had upside before at that price and will again, unless he gets reprinted with regularity, which would keep his price down. I am all about enfranchising EDH players, but foils should be expensive and a $1 card with a $15 foil is everything and EDH-playing financier like me could ever ask for.

Heritage Druid

Jason Alt – At $40, this foil is more expensive than a lot of the rares in the set. Opting not to put this in Commander 2014 in the elf deck made this hit $10. Reprinting this at not rare is going to make this very reasonable, both in foil and non-foil. This reprint is going to do what reprints should, and not putting it in a commander precon means the foil price won’t diverge out of control. All in all, this is what this set should do.

Eight-and-a-half Tails

Jason Alt – Quick, without looking, how much is this card? Now check. Surprised? I wasn’t, but I play EDH. Champions of Kamigawa was widely regarded as one of the worst sets ever, but that whole block gave EDH and casual so many staples it isn’t funny. This guy hit $7 with a $24 foil and those prices are going to be impacted for sure. Good reprint for enfranchising EDH, I guess.

Jareth, Leonine Titan

Jason Alt – The commander reprint made this a bulk rare but left the Onslaught version around $2. All this will do is pull the $12 foil down, but only by a bit. This is fine.

Wall of Omens

Jason Alt – Some cards shrug off reprint after reprint and then, one day, a reprint pulls the card’s pants down and it never recovers. This may not be what does Wall of Omens in, but we have to be getting close. This should drag the $20 foils down less than it drags down the $7 non-foils, despite a commander and duel deck printing. This is just good all around.

Arcanis the Omnipotent

Jason Alt – This guy is like $4 despite multiple reprintings and with good reason. He’s bonkers. This likely won’t destroy his price but it’s the third time this was printed in foil and it likely can’t hold $20 after this.

Future Sight 

Jason Alt – Bummer. This means we get this art in foil and the duel deck printing meant my Onslaught foils maintained their value. I didn’t see this coming and it feels bad, but if you wanted this in your EDH deck and wanted it in foil, this should be a bit more affordable, now. The non-foil price was like $1 so this is just getting more foils in people’s hands.

Inkwell Leviathan

This is a $1 card with a $2 premium deck series foil and a $5 set foil because this block did those all-foil packs for less than a booster of EMA costs. No financial relevance here

Phyrexian Ingester

Jason Alt – Underrated EDH card I had in foil because a Commander reprinting wouldn’t touch it gets crushed by a rarity shift. Why, cruel fate? Why?

Serendib Efreet

Jason Alt – This is a good card in Legacy Sea Stompy, which could be a good way to get into Legacy for cheap since the most expensive card would be a sword or jitte if you build it mono-blue with no Force of Will. Sea Drake is down, Illusory Angel is bulk, etc. This won’t affect prices because this is a bulk rare in Revised despite being misprinted and it’s a $4 FTV foil already. Still, this has no real financial impact except it gives us non-terrible foils.

Braids, Cabal Minion

Jason Alt – Banned in EDH, this is still a $35 foil. That will most likely change.

Blood Artist

Jason Alt – This was pulling away from Zulaport Cutthroat, but this should tamp the price back down. A commander precon printing would have preserved the foil multiplier, but I’m not unhappy with this.

Malicious Affliction

Jason Alt – Good news! Now we have a foil version of a bulk rare from C14 I’ve never seen anyone cast. This is better in EDH than it gets credit for, but I still don’t see foils going above $5.

Visara the Dreadful

Jason Alt- This has been printed 3 times and in foil twice already. The $6 FTV foil cut the $20 set foil in half already so this card was already tanking. This is whatever at this point.

Beetleback Chief

Jason Alt – Remember when the reddit crew bought all of these and it hit $15 and now it’s like $0.50? Good times. This is the first chance to get these in foil, but I don’t know that anyone cares. This is fun in Limited, though.

Crater Hellion

Jason Alt – A bulk rare seeing its first foil printing, but a bulk rare all the same.

Siege-Gang Commander

Jason Alt – Bulk rare with a $6 foil likely becomes a bulk rare with a $5 foil.

Tooth and Claw

Jason Alt – Basically just played in Prossh, I still think foils have upside here, but very long-term. I’m just saying don’t bulk out the foils if you get them.

Imperious Perfect

Jason Alt – I don’t know if this will bring down the $3 non-foil price more than other reprints, but like I said about Wall of Omens, this could be the one that does it. The $9 Lorwyn foil could be impacted but the $12 full-art Champs versions are likely safe. This is fine and should be rare because Limited shouldn’t make you said.

Silvos, Rogue Elemental

Jason Alt – $2 rare with a $7 foil becomes a bulk rare with a $4 foil

Xantid Swarm

Jason Alt – This is a $4 card with a $24 foil despite losing a lot of ground due to its falling out of favor in Legacy. This basically stopped seeing play when they banned Mystical Tutor. This is still good in VIntage, but low demand means the price is in danger.

Duplicant

Jason Alt – This is a card that has seen less and less play in EDH lately, but which is still solid and this should bring the price down a bit. Cards under $10 usually take big hits because there wasn’t pressure on them to take up any of the value of the set in the first place, that falls on the cards over $50. With boxes of Modern Masters 1 still only like $350, there isn’t much pressure on $6 cards like Duplicant to do any work for a while and this could end up very cheap, especially if demand continues to wane. This is the first decent foil printing of this art, if that matters.

Relic of Progenitus

Jason Alt – Daggers

Worn Powerstone

Jason Alt – Double Daggers. I was holding onto Saga versions since it seemed unlikely it would be in a set where it could be foil. Now it’s going to be foil, and it could be a $7-$10 foil at that.

Sphinx of the Steel Wind

Jason Alt – Somehow the set foil is $9 despite those foil packs and the Premium series foils being like $2. This should bring that down quite a bit. This is a bulk mythic otherwise.

Glare of Subdual

Jason Alt – Bulk rare with a $5 foil becomes a bulk rare with a $3 foil

There were some very notable exclusions including Worldly Tutor, Damnation, Flusterstorm and Show and Tell. Where will those cards go? It’s hard to say, but those exclusions here could bode very well for Conspiracy 2 later on. Stay tuned when those cards start to come in!

 

 

Track your collection's value over time, see which cards moved the most, track wishlists, tradelists and more. Sign up at MTGPrice.com - it's free!

ADVERTISEMENT:


Please follow and like us:

Shadows Over Innistrad Spoiler Coverage

Jason Alt – Wizards don’t likes it when you calls ’em spoilers no more. They’s “previews” now.

I don’t care, I’m still calling it “Spoiler” coverage and I’m still going to be mostly a bummer about a lot of the cards. Was I wrong to be a bummer last time? Let’s look at the cards from the last set that were over $2. The first column is the retail price calculated using our fair trade price algorithm and the second column is highest buylist price.

Untitled

Hissing Quagmire, Sea Gate Wreckage, Sphinx of the Final Word and Inverter of Truth are all, glaringly, under $2.

Will Shadows sell better than Oath? So far we haven’t seen a land cycle spoiled to make us think so, I haven’t heard they’re doing Expeditions or anything like it and the set is still largely shrouded in mystery. However, the mythics we’ve seen are pretty strong and we saw a preorder non-mythic rare hit $15. Anything is possible and Innistrad is a popular place to revisit. Let’s get busy, shall we?

Geier Reach Bandit/Vildin-Pack Alpha

Untitled

Jason Alt – This is very good. Skip the boring front side of your werewolves if you want. However, being good but narrow doesn’t always translate into being playable. I don’t think this is playable. And absent a Legendart RG werewolf, I don’t see this getting above bulk in the near-term.

DJ Johnson – I think this settles at slightly higher than bulk, similarly to how Mayor of Avabruck settled at slightly higher than bulk for like 5 years before blowing me out of the water and making me regret not buying those 50 copies that I had in my TCG cart at $1.50. Salt Marshes aside, I think this hangs out in the $1 box.

Open the Armory

openthearmory

Jason Alt – If you’re looking at this card and thinking “This might be really good in EDH” I feel like you’re underestimating it a bit. I think you pay cash on foils of this. Really.

Ulrich’s Kindred

ulrichskindred

Jason Alt – This card itself doesn’t matter, but it is a decent signal that there will be a Legendary RG werewolf in Eldrich Moon. Maybe it will be called Skeet Ulrich. People were holding off on Werewolf stuff, but if Endless Ranks of the Dead can go up because of its art, Werewolf cards could have upside not because of good logic but because of bad logic. Hey, money’s money, right?

Cryptolith Rite
cryptolithrite

Jason Alt –  People are calling this a bad Earthcraft. Well who cares? Earthcraft is banned in Legacy. If we have an affordable version of a card that’s banned in Legacy that can be a second or a budget version of Earthcraft, don’t we jump on it? This is a $4 preorder, but I bet this approaches bulk before rebounding since Standard is unlikely to break this before supply outstrips demand initially.

DJ Johnson – This is a bulk rare in a month, but people would rather buy this over a $30 Earthcraft. While you can’t tap the creatures for mana the turn they come into play (the best part about earthcraft), people still buy Parallel Lives when they can’t afford Doubling Season. Easy $5 in a couple years, in my opinion.

Fork in the Road

forkintheroad

Jason Alt – All hail the Gitrog Monster’s preferred Farseek. Get foils and get them fast.

Weirding Wood

weirdingwood

Jason Alt – This seems like some format will find it useful. Foils will likely be dirt cheap and it doesn’t cost much to stock up in case of a hit. If you whiff, you whiff small and if you hit, you hit big. I like those bets.

Slayer’s Plate

slayersplate

Jason Alt – I’m probably wrong, but I really like this card. I don’t think it will impact any formats and that’s unfortunate. This is going to be absolutely miserable to play against in Limited because it makes your smallest creature a threat, your biggest creature a monster and makes their removal spells give you a 5/3 to menace them with next turn. Probably a bulk rare.

DJ Johnson – Bulk rare that will rip your face off in Limited. Seriously, this thing seems almost impossible to race unless you’re already ahead or have a Shatter effect.

Wild-Field Scarecrow

wildfieldscarecrow

Jason Alt – I like this in foil. This is a Burnished Hart effect that also happens to be a Scarecrow which is good for Reaper King decks. There’s a lot to like here and I bet foils start out hella cheap.

DJ Johnson – This is a Burnished Hart that is actually nothing like Burnished Hart because it doesn’t put the lands into play. Foils will start out hella cheap and they’ll stay hella cheap.

Ever After

everafter

Jason Alt – I can’t decide if this is a good Victimize or a bad Rise of the Dark Realms. Certainly people are excited about this but I bet this ends up approaching bulk before it rebounds, if it rebounds.

DJ Johnson – It’s a bad Rise of the Dark Realms.

Ulvenwald Hydra

ulvenwaldhydra

Jason Alt – A while back on Brainstorm Brewery we said hydras were always a good target because they go up in price eventually. Then WotC started putting a bunch of hydras in every block. This doesn’t even play like a hydra. This plays like a bad, too-fair Primeval Titan. I don’t care if Prime Time is banned in EDH, this isn’t the replacement you’re looking for. I don’t even like this at $4.

DJ Johnson – Are you guys excited for bulk hydra number 45? I’m glad Wotc listened to our calls about how we really needed a  hydra in this set, because we needed something to fill the hole in our hearts that appeared from not having a bulk rare dragon in the set, or any dragon at all.

From Under the Floorboards

fromunderthefloorboards

Jason Alt – This is a pretty sweet card. It’s a great mana sink and push comes to shove, if you can discard it, it ends up another drain life with serious upside. I’m not sure I want this at its presale price since I think it has room to go down, but it’s a fun card.

DJ Johnson – Bulk rare, but cute bulk rare. Sell these for quarters and don’t look back,

Silverfur Partisan – Again

silverfurpartisan

Jason Alt – I changed my mind – this card is the real deal. Brewing with it has been very productive. We’re going to lose a lot of good spells to target your creature with to rotation, but there is still plenty to target this with to punish them. This gets out of hand fast, and protecting it is worth it. Anything that boosts wolves ends the game quickly.

Howlpack Resurgence

howlpackresurgence

Jason Alt –EDH players will likely snap up the foils once Eldritch Moon gives us a Legendary Werewolf like I think it will and casuals will eat this up. This might be snaggable for free from draft chaff.

DJ Johnson – This is cute because it lets you pass the turn with your puppies and flip them while holding up a combat trick spell. It’s nothing special, but I think you pull them out of bulk anyway to sell them for quarters.

Stensia Masquerade

stensiamasquerade

Jason Alt – The extent to which Olivia Voldaren players are excited about this makes me pay attention. I still think it’s too narrow, though but I thought I’d mention it in case you see a foil or a free copy in draft chaff. Put both aside, I think. I will.

DJ Johnson – I tend to avoid paying three mana for aggressive enchantments that don’t give me an immediate damage output increase, but oh well. I think you’d rather just play more vampires.

The Gitrog Monster

thegitrogmonster

Jason Alt – Wow, they actually saved a super good spoiler for late. This card is so, so good. An EDH deck assembled itself in my mind as I read this, but that doesn’t mean this doesn’t get jammed in a ton of other decks like Meren. This draws cards, ramps, kills stuff and lets you sac lands so you can trigger Titania, Protector of Argoth. This makes Life from the Loam go up in price, potentially. This makes cycling lands draw you two cards. This is also a $32 playset pre-order and unless this can impact Standard, that’s too expensive. Good card but potentially disastrous spec.

DJ Johnson – Oh. My. God. You already know the Commander deck I’m excited about with this big, dumb, crazily powerful frog. Child of Alara needs this, but I can wait a couple of months to pick up my foil for cheap. This is my favorite card in the set by far, but that doesn’t mean you buy it. Wait until its’ $2-3 and then think about picking up copies, because I do think it could actually see Standard play.

Seasons Past
seasonspast

Jason Alt – As good as this is, Green Mythics like Praetor’s Counsel took years to hit $4 before a reprint neutered the growth, and The Great Aurora is on its way to being almost $1 if it grows some more.  I like the card but I’m not about to run out and buy any. This seems to be a card you wait on.

DJ Johnson – Nooooope. I don’t even think you want to wait on this card. Bulk mythic will be a bulk mythic forever.

Scourge Wolf

scourgewolf1

Jason Alt – This card is very, very strong. I worry that it doesn’t have a deck and that it’s going to run into 2/3 creatures that stuff it. Delirium is a lot of work to have to get to if you want to make your 2/2 trade with a 2/3. If you can keep the ground clear by burning their dudes with instants and sorceries, you have a good recipe for this doing some serious work, especially with cards that boost power and toughness. This likely gets tried out and with it preselling for $3, you could potentially make some money if this hits. Monastery Swiftspear was $3 and if this is that ubiquitous, this is Siege Rhino money. The low price says not a lot of people are betting on that. These same people spent all day buying Pain Seer until it sold out over and over. Maybe $15 Thing in the Ice and $3 Scourge Wolf are both super wrong.

Reddit Spikes are pretty bearish for the same reasons I listed.

DJ Johnson – Delirium seems like it would be a giant pain to secure early on, especially in the mono red shell this card asks for. Instant, Sorcery, and Creature are the obviously easy ones to hit but with no fetchlands the last card type becomes a lot harder. Planeswalker? Artifact? I’m not too hyped. Remember Ash Zealot had haste and also punished them for playing Unburial Rites. I’m not excited to buy in at $3.

Prized Amalgam

prizedamalgam

Jason Alt – This is a great card no one seems to want. Dredge decks barely have room for 3 Ichorid and Ichorid doesn’t come into play tapped. Standard doesn’t have enough ways to trigger this and bring it back. EDH zombie decks don’t love having to have blue in them although there are a ton of ways to get this back potentially triggering Warstorm Surge and getting sacced to Goblin Bombardment or something. This could be a combo card, but no one is excited.

Spikes don’t care.

Neither do the EDH players.

DJ Johnson – Man, I really want this to be good in Modern with Bloodgast. I know that I’m that guy who calls 90% of the set garbage and bulk, but is this really too slow to combo with stuff like Fatestitcher, Gravecrawler, Bloodghast, and Vengevine? Probably, considering it comes in tapped at the end of the turn, but still. It does have the ability to block, which most of these cards don’t have the luxury of doing. I’m just saying out of all the bulk rares in the set, this is the one that I want to own 100 copies of just in case.

Inexorable Mass

inexorablemass

Creature – Ooze
Delirium – Whenever Inexorable Mass attacks and there are at least four card types among cards in your graveyard, put a 3/3 green Ooze creature token onto the battlefield tapped and attacking.

Jason Alt – There are ooze creatures that trigger on attack that made your opponents feel very bad to have to deal with. This is not that card. Being forced to both have delirium and swing it into potentially unsafe situations for it to do anything means the card is pretty decent but not good enough for Standard and too cute to be worth money. If it did something when it split or when it died, maybe.

Spikes call it “Standard unplayable”

DJ Johnson – I miss the days of Predator Ooze with Ulvenwald Tracker. Those were some good days to be an Ooze, considering it was indestructible and could swing into anything. The most useful part about this card is getting a bunch of karma on Reddit for being the guy to find out that there’s a portrait of Ancestral Recall in the background picture frame. Go ahead, find it. I’ll wait.

forgottencreation

Creature – Zombie Horror
Skulk (This creature can’t be blocked by creatures with greater power.)

At the beginning of your upkeep, you may discard your hand. If you do, draw that many cards.

Jason Alt – I literally don’t know what to make of this card. It has skulk but doesn’t have to hit them. I want to say this is completely unplayable but it’s pre-selling for $4.50. Standard doesn’t like this at all.

This is a lot better in EDH. You want this in Grimgrin, The Mimeoplasm, Dralnu – the list is kind of a long one. I don’t think EDH will make $5 stick, but this isn’t totally worthless. I like the effect a lot and I’ll be trading for copies of this when the price is reasonable in a few months.

DJ Johnson – Regardless of the numerous appendages, I don’t think this has the legs for Standard play. You can wait until they’re like $1 or so and then buy in if you really think this Zombie Horror is going anywhere. It goes in a ton of different Zombie Commander lists, but we all know that doesn’t earn it a price tag. Remember how Prophet of Kruphix was $5 for being bannably good? Me either.

“Unplayable”

“Replacing Call to the Kindred”

Altered Ego

alteredego

Jason Alt – This is clunky for Standard although it can just be a 4 mana clone if you want. I’m more worried about this lacking a deck than I am about its power level but in Standard, both or either can be a death sentence. This may be relegate to EDH which won’t help its price much. I imagine every Standard deck running Clever Impersonator and also green will run this.

DJ Johnson – I don’t see this coming into Standard whatsoever. “Can’t be countered” is kind of irrelevant when all the counterspells are garbage, and paying sixteen mana for a clone is for the cool Commander kids like me (I won’t play this card, but Jason probably will). The last time we had a good clone was the dynamic duo of Phyrexian Metamorph and Phantasmal Image, neither of which costed four mana. Pass.

Fevered Visions

feveredvisions

Jason Alt – This was Brainstorm Brewery’s preview card so it’s obviously the best card in the set. I immediately saw this as a sweet Nekusar inclusion – not all Howling Mines let you draw first and Lightning Bolt your opponent with Nekusar out. Other applications seem to be less forthcoming. I love this card and love that we got to preview and love how the art is going to look foil but I don’t think you preorder this unless someone breaks it.

DJ Johnson – Since Nekusar literally builds itself and you have room for about four personal choices throughout the entire list, I’m not sure this makes the cut. No salt at all, nope. None here. I’m pretty sure this is avoids bulk rare status, but just barely. Howling Mine variants do a pretty good job of hanging by a thread at the $1-2 bin.

Invocation of St. Traft

invocationofsainttraft

Jason Alt – I don’t like this card nearly as much as everyone else. Standard players are begging to eat a fat Reflector Mage in their dome. Modern players aren’t going to want to load up their Geist decks with these since Geist is already a great Geist. EDH players are excited, but I’m not entirely sure why. Bruna is basically a Traumatize Combo deck, Zur is basically a control deck and Narset is a Time Warp deck. I don’t think the four damage matters in any of those decks, frankly. It’s cool to slap this on a hexproof dude, but I just don’t think it’s going to be as good in EDH as people think. They could have been playing Moonsilver Spear this whole time and most of them weren’t. Spear is more expensive, true, but the angel token stays in play with Spear, the equipment stays out of the creature dies and the spear can go in any color deck.

Reddit spikes seems as bearish as I am.

DJ Johnson – Geist of Saint Traft was insane because he came with a 2/2 body and was difficult to remove from the board. You could suit him up with Spectral Flight and put your opponent on a three turn clock, and punish anyone paying life for Phyrexian mana. You have to already find a hexproof guy to put this on if you don’t want to be blown out of the water, so I’m staying away. It’s a cool design, but that doesn’t bring in the cash dollars.

Triskaidekaphobia

triskaidekaphobia

Jason Alt – See if you can find all 13 instances of 13 in the art. Or talk to girls. Generally those two groups don’t overlap much.

Flavor-wise this card is amazing, but I don’t think it will be very effective. It’s a really bad Siege card. I do love cards that say “win the game” but it seems like they print these life total cards only when there are painlands in the format which sucks. I hated not being able to Hidetsugu’s Second Rite people at 10 because they had a Battlefield Forge. With painlands in the format for now, it sucks that we don’t get to use this to its best effect. Don’t build around this, but definitely laugh at how awesome and flavorful this card is. If it were any cooler, it would have been in M15 and would have been designed by the guys from Penny Arcade.

DJ Johnson – Three cheers for flavor! Then ten more cheers, while wearing garlic and avoiding stepping on sidewalk cracks. I can’t wait to find that guy who’s goal is to collect every copy of these, so I can tell him what an idiot he is. You’re supposed to collect thirteen non-foils, thirteen foils, thirteen Russian ones, thirteen Japanese ones… thirteen sets of thirteen different languages and foilings. You get the point. On the plus side, it’ll probably be a bulk rare.

Hanweir Militia Captain/Westvale Cult Leader

Untitled

Jason Alt – So we have a militia captain with literally no leadership skills? No granting of combat bonuses to other soldiers? No gifting of first strike or vigilance? No casting cost reduction? An actual Grizzly Bear would do the exact same job leading this militia. This is just a jackass carrying an AR-15 in a Walmart because “Muh Freedom” and doesn’t get anything done until you have a LOT of creatures at which point it turns into a cult leader and starts getting things accomplished. Being a 4/4 that farts out dudes that grow the cult leader is a pretty solid way to wrap the game up, especially if the tokens all get some sort of bonus (no thanks to their militia captain who is holed up inside a National Park begging for snacks) and EDH players like this, but I am not sure if this can impact Standard and therefore be worth it financially.

DJ Johnson – Her other side makes 1/1 BW Clerics, but I don’t think the Cleric deck wants a card this slow. Maybe it does. Do I look like the guy playing BW Clerics? No, I’m the guy playing Child of Alara Lands. Pay attention. I don’t think Standard wants Grizzly Bears that flip into Scion of the Wild. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I highly doubt you cast this in Standard.

Avacyn’s Judgment

avacynsjudgment

Jason Alt – Given the choice between making this distribute 3 damage and be too good and distribute 2 damage and probably not be great, they chose to go with the weaker version. A slower Twin Bolt, this can potentially be a great card if you can easily discard it, which may not actually be that easy. Spikey players are pretty excited, though, and the card is pre-selling for $5 which is the price it would cap out at unless it’s much better than anyone thinks. I’m not jazzed about $20 playsets of this. I seem to remember people thinking Aurelia’s Fury was going to be a $40 card and it ended up worth 40 cents, so I’m staying far away.

DJ Johnson– Wizards does remember making Forked Bolt at uncommon, right? You have to cast this for madness if you don’t want to feel terrible. Don’t think this is Bonfire, because it’s not anything close. At least the art is sweet, so you can trade it off to that Angel person who is going to go crazy this set trying to collect all of the angels and angel accessories.

The spikes weigh in.

Goldnight Castigator

goldnightcastigator

Jason Alt – A fun thing to do with this is use Zedruu or Bazaar Trader to donate this. An unfun thing to do is open a booster pack with this as your mythic.

I take that back, this is probably good enough to wreck people in Limited before they can get you on the swingback, but I wouldn’t risk it. Being at 10 life is scary when this is a 5 turn clock. This is interesting design but I don’t think it’s powerful enough in your favor to mitigate the drawbacks and this shouldn’t be mythic.

Spikey players call this a bad Thunderbreak Regent

These are like $6 on eBay. I’m not paying $6 for a bad Thunderbreak Regent.

DJ Johnson – Maybe this sees play out of the sideboard of the Red deck versus control where you don’t expect to get cracked in the side of the head by the opposing army. This seems really bad in multiples, which is certainly an odd characteristic for a four mana mythic red angel. I’m not paying $6 for this card, and neither should you. Seems like a $2-3 card, and that’s being generous. Standard has a lot of creatures, and this is bad against creatures.

Sin Prodder

sinprodder

DJ Johnson Welp. Pack it up boys and girls, we had a good run. Magic is officially over. Anytime a young child runs up to their parents and says that they want to learn the game, THIS is the art that the parent will reference as to why this game should be illegal in the good ol’ Christian ‘nation of ‘MURICA. Time to fire sell everything, it’s the end of the game as we know it.

Anyway, this actually seems strong in the mono-red shell that will probably pop up in the early weeks of Standard. That aggressive shell will compete with Vampires, and this was obviously too strong to smack with the Vampire creature type. I don’t like it at a $5 pre-order, but you do what you want. Seems like a $2-3 card to me a month from now…. is there an echo in here?

Jason Alt – No one knows what this card does. I’m serious. There is so much confusion so many places and I’m so sleep-deprived because of my infant Planeswalker that I have no idea what this card does. I keep staring at it. I think this is a hard-to-block creature that reveals a card on your upkeep. If it’s a land, they can make you bin it and if it’s a Fiery Temper they can either take 3 to make you bin it or let you draw it and take 3. Am I reading this card right? It seems pretty good. It’s not Dark Confidant, but in a red deck where you’re burning their face it can put them between a rock and a hard place. I’m calling this Browbeat Confidant. Vexing Devil 2.0. I don’t know what to make of it, honestly.

Reddit spikes are split on this card which means half of them are wrong. When people can’t agree, two things happen. One, they will all pretend they always thought whatever the general concensus ends up being. Nobody ever though Tasigur wouldn’t be a good card to hear them tell it. Everyone knew Goblin Rabblemaster and Abbot of Keral Keep were insane from the second they were spoiled. To hear them tell it. The other thing is that sometimes the card is underpriced. Either I don’t understand how this card works, or this is  going to sometimes draw you extra cards your opponent can’t afford to stop you from drawing and in a red deck, you can take advantage of that. With my luck, they’ll deny me burn topdecks and I’ll draw nothing but land for the turn. Still, I think at $7 it has very little upside even if it’s better than I think it is.

Tireless Tracker

tirelesstracker

DJ Johnson – I got excited when I saw landfall, and I’m actually considering finding a spot for this in my Child of Alara Commander deck. I make a lot of mana, so this could very easily end up replacing Seer’s Sundial considering I can Green Sun for it. Oh, right. I have to talk about Standard, or something like that. Bulk rare. If you’re sacrificing Clues in Standard, something went horribly wrong and you’re probably not a good enough investigator to find out why.

Jason Alt – I like this in a deck like Shattergang Brothers where you can sac the clue token to its ability to make everyone sac an artifact and then you grow this guy. But then I’d have to take a card out of the deck. I don’t want to do that. Bulk.

Port Town and the other 4 allied lands

porttown

DJ Johnson – So we finally got our rare cycle, and it appears that we get allied colors this time around. You have to show another basic (or BFZ) land for these to hang around untapped, which means getting a two-land hand of Port Towns is absolutely garbage unless you rip a basic off the top. Whatever these are pre-ordering at, they’re almost certainly going to drop a bit. However, that cost is mitigated slightly by the fact they’re dual lands. Buying lands for use over the next year and a half is very rarely a bad move…

Jason Alt – I bet their pre-order price is too high, but barely. Buy these to play with if you need them, don’t if you don’t. That’s boring, but so are these lands.

Corrupted Tombstone

corruptedtombstone

Corrupted Tombstone enters the battlefield tapped.

T: Choose a card in your graveyard. Add one mana of that card’s color to your mana pool.

Jason Alt – This is worse than Fellwar Stone early in the game although it’s almost always better later. Graveyard wipe does shut this off, though, and that sucks. The real puzzle here is why this is Rare. I guess this would be too good for Limited at Uncommon? This isn’t a card I’m excited about and I’m and EDH player. If an EDH player isn’t excited about a mana rock, who will be? This reminds me of Vessel of Endless Rest. Not a lot to love, here.

DJ Johnson – Ugh. I really do not want to open this at rare. I mean, I don’t want to open packs at all unless I’m drafting, but even then this seems like a kick in the nuts. Bulkiest of bulk rares, read no more.

Burn From Within

burnfromwithin

Sorcery
Burn from Within deals X damage to target creature or player. If a creature is dealt damage this way, it loses indestructible until end of turn. If that creature would die this turn, exile it instead.

Jason Alt – This is a really expensive way to get rid of a creature. This is solid in Limited, and fireballs with upside are cool historically. This is also a way to kill gods in EDH so this has that going for it as well. Interesting card, but probably pretty bulky. I don’t like this at $4.

DJ Johnson – We’re at the point in spoiler season where most of the remaining cards will be bulk rares. That’s okay. The cycle of bulk and non-bulk continues. I find it kind of funny that this doesn’t prevent regeneration due to them phasing out that mechanic, so while it can take down a Darksteel Colossus it folds to a Krosan Warchief. This is way too expensive.

Engulf the Shore

engulftheshore

Jason Alt – Standard probably doesn’t want this since it forces you to go very deep on one color. EDH doesn’t want this because other cards do this so much better and you don’t play attenuated versions of good cards when you have a huge card pool. This is good in Limited, but that’s about it. Check the price graph for Whelming Wave, which, for the record, I think is much better than this card. Pass.

DJ Johnson – Another day, another dime. You want to play stuff like Cyclonic Rift over this in Commander, and spells like this haven’t seen Standard play since, well, Cyclonic Rift.

Thalia’s Lieutenant

thaliaslieutenant

Jason Alt – Is this Champion of the Parish 2.0? No, I don’t think so. While this interacts favorably with Eldrazi Displacer in a way that is super good if you have a ton of humans (and being mono-white means your splash color is colorless to get those Displacer triggers going. I realize this isn’t a real deck), lacking the “Turn 1 champion, turn 2 Gather the Townsfolk” start that made Champion of the Parish nutty hurts this card. I am not super sure what it will do, but tokens buff this and this buffs tokens right back. That could be good. I don’t know about this as  $10 playset preordered, though. This has potential and I want to like it more. I just feel like there is as much downside as upside at $2.50. If this “hits” it’s a $5 card. If it “misses” it’s bulk. Hard to know. If you like this card and are brewing sauce with it, you could double up, based on the price of Champion of the Parish.

Reddit spikes want to play this in CoCo humans.

DJ Johnson  – People smarter than me like this card, but other people smarter than me hate it and think it’s a bulk rare. While I’m going to hold off on my giant “BULK” stamp for now, I don’t think you want to buy in at $10 a playset, unless you have your Modern Humans brew ready and waiting. This one could go either way folks, but you know that my money is staying in my wallet and being saved for collections.

Welcome to the Fold

welcometothefold

Jason Alt – I am evaluating this in terms of “I don’t want to cast this not for madness” rather than “madness gives this upside” and that may be wrong, but I am basing how I see Standard developing on that premise. I don’t like this as a really weak Domestication, Domestication being a card that never really saw play. This is a bulk rare to me, and it gets even worse in formats like EDH where so many excellent alternatives outshine it.

DJ Johnson- I feel like this falls into the same camp as the previous bad Evacuation, where it’s not going to cut in in either Standard or Commander. Bulk rare life it is, but I don’t think I want to completely eliminate the possibility of this seeing play as a sideboard card in Standard during its’ tenure. I don’t hate trading for these at dimes, but then again I don’t hate anyone who trades for bulk rares at dimes because those people are smart.

Asylum Visitor

asylumvisitor

Jason Alt – This is only pre-ordering for $5, otherwise known as “40% of Pain Seer” which means this is at last looked at through the lens of past regret. I think this is much better than Pain Seer in a lot of ways, and if you’re going hard at making them pitch their mitt, this could draw you a lot of cards. You’re also a Grafted Skullcap deck with hellbent strategies, but you need a constant pitch outlet in case you draw two lands. This having madness is perfect with that strategy because you can pitch your cards with abandon and not have to worry about playing this on curve.

The 3/1 instead of the 2/1 on Dark Confidant is pure gravy. This is a tricky card to play and tricky means narrow and narrow means it’s hard for this to get above $5, but at least the card draw on creatures is this “tough to get but worth it” rather than “what if you draw and extra card but your opponent draws two cards and gains 5 life a turn?” trend we’ve seen lately. You can’t make money pre-ordering this at $5 unless it’s the next Siege Rhino. Is it? I doubt that.

DJ Johnson – I don’t like pre-ordering this at $5. That said, I do think it sees play in Standard at some point over the next 18 months and you could just lock in your playset right now without losing too much money. Maybe it hits $10 release weekend if Vampires is the nuts, but Wotc knows how to tempter their tribal since Lorwyn. I think this settles at the $2-3 spot a month from now.

Second Harvest

secondharvest

This is probably a bulk rare. That said, how cool is this card? Every EDH player wants to do a million amazing things with this. In standard, maybe you get some extra wolf or zombie tokens and maybe you make a mess of clue tokens. In EDH this is nutter butters. Imagine casting this in a Riku deck and using Riku to copy it. Sweet Jesus. Imagine this with Doubling Season, Parallel Lives, Seance, Trostani, Progenitor Mimic… the list is a long one. This card is stupid good. Is it enough to make this a buck or two? I don’t think it is in the short term. Any time you wonder how an EDH card will fare out of the gate, remember that Dictate of Erebos hit bulk and I had a year to scoop them for nothing and fill a big box up. Don’t pre-order.

Congratulations to Josh Lee Kwai and Jimmy Wong from the Command Zone on getting this as their preview card. I promise I wasn’t extra kind to this card because I like those guys.

DJ Johnson – While this is sweet, it does seem kinda win-more. I’ll be the voice of reason to temper Jason’s enthusiasm, and remind you that the Token Commander deck only has 99 slots, and I’m not sure this goes in every single list. Does it go in Rhys? Probably, but I don’t think it gets jam packed as often as Doubling Season and Parallel Lives. Either way, you have plenty of time to pick these up at bulk rares before it starts its’ climb to $3.

Confirmed Suspicions

confirmedsuspicions

Counter target spell.

Investigate three times. (Put a colorless Clue artifact token onto the battlefield with “2, Sacrifice this artifact: Draw a card.”)

Jason Alt – Investigate all you want, I’m not paying 5 mana for a damn counterspell, especially if I have to pay a bunch of mana later to draw. Bulk rare.

DJ Johnson- In three weeks, my suspicions of this being a bulk rare will be confirmed. AM I LSV YET???

Eternal Vigil

eternalvigil

Non-token creatures you control gain +1/+1 and vigilance.

Jason Alt – Adding vigilance is cool, but this won’t interact with this set nearly as much as Intangible Virtue interacted with Lingering Souls to ruin block. This is an odd card in EDH since most of the decks that run Glorious Anthem run tokens. I think the non-token restriction makes this worse than Glorious Anthem and not close enough to it than we want to run both. I bet this is worth money. I bet it’s not worth pre-ordering, though.

DJ Johnson – I’m going to disagree with Jason here and call this a bulk rare. There are a billion options for anthems out there, and I don’t think you want one that doesn’t help out tokens. Don’t preorder this, and don’t throw them in a box expecting them to be worth anything either. Buuuuuuuuuuuuulk.

Behold the Beyond

beholdthebeyond

Jason Alt – How badly do you want to discard your hand? You’re enabling Delirium, I guess maybe, but you’re not enabling madness unless they reprint Basking Rootwalla. This is a really bad Diabolic Revelation otherwise. This didn’t need to be mythic and it didn’t need to cost 7 mana if you have to pitch your hand. Ugh. This might have been cool if it had madness for like 3B or something, but it doesn’t. This is a fart. I bet it’s a bulk mythic and it didn’t need to be.

DJ Johnson – I feel like this card got neutered in development. It might have cost 6 at one point, then they realized that it was insane. Maybe it sees play as a one-of if you can cast it for free, followed by some rituals? I dunno. Either way, it’s a bulk mythic. Foils could definitely be worth looking out for if they hit bulk mythic status as well.

Silverfur Partisan

silverfurpartisan

Jason Alt – This would be an amazing ability to put on a Legendary RG wolf, but multiple copies can stack so I guess there is upside to this not being Legendary. Could WotC possibly miss printing a RG werewolf Legend for EDH? Are they that bad at this?

This card is pretty cool and worst case scenario it replaces itself. Well, worst case scenario, a meteor smashes into our planet killing 90% of the world’s population in giant tidal waves and leaving the rest to fend for themselves in the frozen wasteland that used to be our planet when the ash cloud kicked up by the impact blocks out the sun and shrouds the earth in darkness for 100 years, ushering in a new ice age. This set could be as bad as Ice Age is what I’m saying.

This is a $4 preorder and if this ends up as a 4-of in a deck that can’t lose to burn decks or other spot removal, I could see that being a decent buy-in point. Siege Rhino went up from $4 and this could. How likely is that? The spikes aren’t sure and neither am I. There could be opportunity here, but this needs to really be a card.

DJ Johnson – This seems awkward. Wolves and werewolves need one-drops to compete, not more three-drops that avoid targeted burn. I’m not a fan of preordering this card either, considering it has to see a pretty strong showing to double up. I don’t really know what to make of it, so I’d rather play safe instead of be sorry.

Diregraf Colossus
diregrafcolossus

Diregraf Colossus enters the battlefield with a +1/+1 counter for each Zombie card in your graveyard.

Whenever you cast a Zombie spell, put a 2/2 black Zombie creature token onto the battlefield tapped.

Jason Alt – Very much in the same vein as Silverfur Partisan, this is the zombie equivalent and it plays differently and maybe better, maybe worse. This doesn’t rely on your opponent doin’ thangs, but it does require you to play zombies and there are like 2 good ones so far, including this one. This is great outside of Standard, but that won’t affect prices right off the bat so Standard is all we care about at first. Look how long it took people to buy into Risen Executioner. I don’t care what this pre-sells for it will drop. That is unless they reveal a ton of sicko 1-drop and 2-drop zombies in the next week, that is. I’ll take a second look at this card if they do. They won’t. But they could. But they won’t.

DJ Johnson – I like how they’re making lords more interesting instead of just +1/+1 effects across the  board. Jason’s correct in that the only thing that matters off the bat is Standard, and we’re not going to get Zombie tribal there. I think this goes down to near-bulk, but not quite true bulk. Trade for some at near-bulk if you like long-term stuff, but I’m not a huge fan. Zombies are jam-packed with three drops as it is, even in casual. There’s only so much room you can have in 60-card land, and it’s hard to compete with Messenger, Death Baron, and Cemetery Reaper.

Westvale Abbbey/Ormendahl, Profane Prince

Untitled

Westvale Abbey
Land
T: Add ◊ to your mana pool.

5, T, pay one life: Put a 1/1 white and black human cleric token onto the battlefield.

5, T, sacrifice five creatures: transform and untap Ormendahl, Profane Prince.

Legendary Creature – Demon
Flying, lifelink, indestructible, haste

Jason Alt – This seems pretty saucy. It’s a little slowish but so are control decks and this is really grindy. Historically, lands that fart out chump blockers and potential board swarmers are very playable and have been since Kjeldoran Outpost. This is currently $6 and if this ends up getting jammed in control decks as a win-con, that’s about right, I think. What I’m saying is this looks like a $5-$8 card on a good day and there is a lot more money to lose than there is to gain buying in at $6. If you want these to play with, pre-order, otherwise I don’t think this is mis-priced.

DJ Johnson – Did they forget to make this mythic? I feel like a land that transforms into a 9/7 flying, lifelink, indestructible, and haste should definitely be mythic. Having your win condition take up a land slot in your control list is absolutely insane, if you can’t remember Standard the last time lands that make creatures were around. I don’t think you buy in looking for profit, but $5-6 seems fine if you want one or two for your Standard lists.

Traverse the Ulvenwald

traversetheulvenwald

Jason Alt – This is pretty good in EDH and there is some flexibility here you don’t get with Worldy Tutor. You can play the creature the same turn you tutor for it which you can’t do with Worldly Tutor although you could just play Worldly EOT and pretend you drew the card right away, though that replaces your draw. This has some flexibility WT doesn’t once you get Delirium allowing you to still get a land if you want. I don’t know whether every deck is taking out Worldly Tutor for something that only gets a land some of the time but this card is interesting. At $7 pre-order per copy I am a little skeptical. I don’t think this is as good in Standard as you want a $7 card to be.

DJ Johnson – $7? I’m not  buying it and you shouldn’t either. I really think people are overestimating the ease of acquiring delirium in Standard. It’s easier in EDH, but you don’t pay $7 for a green sorcery tutor unless it’s Eladamri’s Call. Meh, I think this is a $2-3 in the medium term, considering its’ not really worth casting without delirium.

Drownyard Temple

drownyardtemple

Jason Alt – What does this card even do? Sea Gate Ruins is bulk so I don’t have high hopes for this card that seems to have less upside. Speaking of which, Madness seems to make Sea Gate Ruins way better.

DJ Johnson – I really like the design of this card, but I don’t think it actually does anything relevant. I want to break it,  but Wotc probably tested the absolute hell out of this type of effect to make sure that it wasn’t going to break formats into oblivion. It’s kind of sad, but you should still be aware of the foil price for Commander.

Deathcap Cultivator

deathcapcultivator

Jason Alt – General Zod has fallen on hard times since Superman banished him.

Untitled

I think this tells the tale pretty well. People want $7.50 for Deathcap Cultivator right now, so unless you think Rattleclaw is a bad corollary (it makes black, which is kind of relevant currently) I think you can basically only lose money at this price. If Deathcap Cultivator is much better than Rattleclaw, I think you lose your money much slower but still lose it.

DJ Johnson – Listen to Jason. Deathtouch isn’t the most relevant ability to scale into late game with, so I’m perfectly fine staying away because I’m confident this will be a dollar rare in a month or so.

Sorin, Grim Nemesis

soringrimnemesis

Jason Alt – This is a serious planeswalker. This just tunes people up. I think 6 mana is a lot, but this also just hits play and makes your opponent start to sweat bullets. It’s not the pseudo-wrath that Elspeth was, but I still expect this to see play. It’s also just sort of boring. Another BW Sorin and another Blue Jace is sort of “meh” but I’m glad they gave us two new ‘walkers in the set. We’ll see how this pans out, but like all planeswalkers, the jace tax makes pre-ordering a losing proposition 95% of the time. At $25, I’m staying away.

DJ Johnson – Jeez. Six mana walkers are supposed to apply a ton of pressure right out of the gates, and Sorin’s no different the fourth time around. The ult is mostly irrelevant I think, but who cares when you have a minus X to be versatile with? If you know what it feels like to be at three life with a Dark Confidant in play, I’m sure it’ll be fun to share that with every opponent across the table. Don’t pay $25 for this though, wait until its’ like $10 if you want to roll some dice and gamble money.

Markov Dreadknight

markovdreadknightpromo

DJ Johnson- Can you say bulk rare? Bulk. Rare. Don’t worry, the next card is freaking insane. At least, I think so. It’s a scalab…. You know what? I’m not gonna waste more space on this garbage. Keep scrolling, and you’ll see what I mean.

Jason Alt – This is decent as a card but I feel like with only limited casual appeal and nothing compelling making it a good Standard pick, this will languish in bulk bins. This site will get bought up and that bodes poorly for marginal rares like this.

epiphanyatthedrownyard

DJ Johnson – If you were a fast and dedicated reader, you got to see the paragraph on this card that I’m currently typing over. I thought it was a scaling Fact or Fiction, but I was corrected on Twitter and reminded that it was a lot more reminiscent of Steam Augury. There is a very big difference between those two cards. Your opponent will give you the bad cards if they’re a good player. This card is a lot worse after reading it correctly, so don’t buy $18 playsets.

Jason Alt – This is much closer to Steam Augury than it is to Fact or Fiction. You’re going to get bad cards with this. I realize control decks tend to have mana open at the end of the turn, but I think there are better ways to spend it. I don’t like this card very much and I certainly don’t like it at $5 a copy. I’m passing.

Harness the Storm

harnessthestorm

DJ Johnson – This card is sweet, right up until the moment you realize that you have to pay for the card you want to cast from your graveyard. Yeah, not so great anymore. It’s cute with Ritual effects, but we don’t want to play enchantments in our Storm deck that aren’t Pyromancer Ascension. Bulk rare.

Jason Alt – The only deck I could see wanting this is some sort of burn deck, maybe. For 4 mana you can Madness Fiery Temper? I don’t know. This is just a worse, more expensive Pyromancer’s Ascension in that case. It’s not good enough for Modern and the rest of the deck isn’t there for you to build it in Standard. This is cute but way expensive.

ADVERTISEMENT:


Olivia, Mobilized for War

oliviamobilizedforwar

DJ Johnson – 

Can we talk about how awkward this card’s name is for a minute? I don’t know, but it just doesn’t roll off the tongue very well. Also, that sword is horribly designed. Having holes in your sword is a really poor strategy that allows the opponent to parry and control your movements very easily, and makes it structurally…. you know what? Forget it. Card seems pretty strong on the curve, although we said that about Drana too. She’s certainly got a lot of synergy with the one-drop in the set where you can discard extra copies of the 2/1 for R and just play out a huge army, allowing you to give all of them haste.

Olivia is preselling for $14 right now, which still seems high to me for something unproven. On the plus side, you can toss extra copies to the first one when you play other creatures, so that’s something to think about. Wait, why is she a knight? Did she go to knight-school for the past six years, and get trained in how to use anime swords? Ugh.

Jason Alt – How long until someone alters this card to look like emo Cloud from Advent Children? I feel like she found this sword in a chest in Nibelheim. One more? Looks like Vincent and Cloud had a daughter and she prefers her dad’s clothes. She looks like a Final Fantasy 7 character, you guys.

She also looks pretty efficient at melting faces off. You can turn extra lands into upgrades for your creatures, so that’s pretty cool. She is a very aggressive creature and she isn’t as bad when drawn in multiples as other legends. $14? She is harder to put in decks than Kalitas and Drana and those cards only flirted with that price. I’m skeptical. I like this card, but not that much.

Jace, Unraveler of Secrets

Jace

DJ Johnson – Ehhhh…? I’m not too impressed, but maybe that changes after Vryn’s Prodigy leaves us. He’s preselling for $20 just like the other walkers, so we’re continuing to see a leveling off in walkers that don’t look insane right off the bat. Either way, you know the drill by now. Don’t. Preorder. Walkers. (unless you for some reason need them for a PPTQ the weekend of release)

Jason Alt – This does the most Jacey stuff ever. How Jacey is this Jace? It’s like the Jaceiest. People always underestimate Jace and he always proves them wrong. 5 mana seems like a lot for this guy, especially since he ratchets up to his ult so slowly, but he has a thick skin with his initial 5 loyalty, he can protect him self with his bounce, though it puts him in Temper range right away, his Ultimate is brutal and wins you the late game and Scry 1, draw is one of the best draw abilities we have seen on a Jace. He’s good, but is 5 mana too much? I think you are OK paying the $20 to preorder because I don’t know if he goes down a ton, at least in the short term. Don’t underestimate Jace, guys.

Edit – A lot of people seem to think I think this card is better than it is and that it’s just a worse, blue Ob Nixilis. Maybe. But people always underestimate Jace. Being blue matters. He’s likely too much to preorder for, but if you want more opinions, check out what the spikes think.

sigardaheronsgrace

DJ Johnson – I’m pretty sure this is a bulk mythic. Angelic Overseer was bulk. I’d much rather my large Angel have hexproof than all her puny humans, and so she’s definitely a step down from her former self. I can’t tell if she’s crazy from the art yet, or if she’s one of the last “good” angels left. Someone fill me in here, while I fill you in that you shouldn’t buy this card.

Jason Alt – Historically, angels that gives humans hexproof aren’t great. This isn’t as good as the other Sigarda and can’t even go in decks like Mayael like the other one does. I don’t think you want this as an EDH general, which hurts its upside. People will want to build around this, but I don’t like this much.

Sage of Ancient Lore/Werewolf of Ancient Hunger

sageofancientlore werewolfofancienthunger

DJ Johnson – Get ready for another disagreement between Jason and I. I can’t ever imagine myself casting this in Commander, even in a Simic list where you draw a bunch of cards. I feel like everyone else at the table will easily be able to keep this on the front face without much effort, and that’s not very exciting. This is extremely win-more because if nobody is casting a spell in EDH past turn 4 when you play this, they’ve probably already lost the game due to either boredom or someone else killing them with a more effective card. Bulk. Rare.

Were you playing Maro in your Simic deck? How about Multani, Maro-Sorcerer? No? Then I don’t think you’ll be taking either of those out to replace them for something that is one of those cards less than half the time, and doesn’t have shroud to prevent it from being killed instantly. Are you really going to choose not to play two spells just so you can attack with your X/X? I didn’t think so.

Jason Alt – I spent like 45 minutes trolling Doug about this card today. This card is trash.

To the Slaughter

totheslaughter

DJ Johnson – This is going to compete with the super-Unmake of the set, and I still don’t think it’s going to be an extremely powerful chase rare. Fetches rotating makes Delirium very hard to achieve early on in the game (at least based on what we’ve seen so far) without sacrificing significant resources, and this is a card you want to play in a control deck to stall the game out. I’m not a fan of buying in early (you’ll see a pattern of that throughout the set review), and the delirium ability won’t even always be relevant because they have to have a creature and a walker to get value. Add in the fact that most walkers make tokens of their own, and you’re losing a lot of money here.

Jason Alt – The last time a card reminded me of Browbeat, Doug really liked it. I see people really flipping out over this card and I guess I can see why, but I think it’s being mis-evaluated a bit. If you have delirium AND they have a planeswalker, this is better than Cruel Edict. If they don’t, it’s worse than Hero’s Downfall by a lot. I don’t like paying $5 here, but if you think this is as good as Hero’s Downfall, we’ve seen cards like that (well, that card specifically) hit $10 so buy accordingly.

Arlinn Kord/Arlinn, Embraced by the Moon

arlinnkordarlinnembracedbythemoon

DJ Johnson – And here we have our first flip-walker that has the ability to flip back to the front face. While there are no eBay listings up yet (she’s only been spoiled for about an hour as of 12:00pm EST 3/15/16), I’m going to guess that she’ll pre-sell for about $20, similar to Nahiri. My financial verdict is similar to that of the angry lithomancer, so I would hold off on pre-ordering unless you’re itching to cast her on the first week.

That emblem is extremely powerful, but it is a bit deceptive in how long it takes to pull off uncontested. You have to use that 0 ability at least once to transform before you ultimate, and the removal ability on night mode is pretty valuable for killing off other walkers. I think it will just be better to keep making wolves and then Bolting things instead of chasing up to the -6.

Jason Alt – This does a lot of things you want a zoo walker to do. Elspeth, Knight Errant this isn’t, but she has a lot of abilities and can get herself and you out of jams. The problem is that you could find yourself wanting an ability that is on the opposite side and it’s very slow to correct that. I still think this card is pretty good and I imagine she’ll get jammed at least early on. Planeswalkers are tough to evaluate, but it’s also tough for them to get over $20 if the rest of the set is good and I imagine that’s where this will presell. I think there are more scenarios where you lose or break even pre-ordering this.

Odric, Lunarch Marshal

odriclunarchmarshal

Jason Alt – Dafuq is “skulk?”

Concerted Effort is now almost $3, so this card has a lot of upside in 10 years. You don’t want this as a Commander, but it can do some work in the 99. I still say this is a bulk rare with upside on the foil copies. Can you really see this getting played in Standard?

DJ Johnson – Something something Banding joke, something something Flanking joke. Alright now that that’s out of the way, this is some bulk. It’s bulk that casual players will freaking love, but still bulk. Maybe you can sell these at a dollar, but they’re definitely solid pickups at dimes. Those are a lot of words, and my customers love a solid helping of word salad on their cards.

Falkenrath Gorger

falkenrathgorger

Each vampire creature card you own that isn’t on the battlefield has Madness. Its Madness cost is equal to its mana cost. (If you discard a card with Madness, you may play it for its madness cost instead of putting it into your graveyard.)

Jason Alt – So this card is very good. Aggressive 1-drops are traditionally expensive, even the unexciting ones. This can pair with madness enablers to make all of your vampires cast the exact same way, so that’s cool. This is a weird sort of pseudo-flash that also makes their discard worse, I guess. Still, we have a 2-power creature for 1 that has upside rather than a drawback. I like. This is likely a $5ish card if Zurgo is any indication. Lots of cards in Innistrad are very slow. I think that makes the fast ones deceptively better. I like this.

DJ Johnson – This card is sweet. We have our first Jackal Pup in red without a downside, and it actually has a reasonable upside. I’m pulling Stromkirk Noble out of my bulk rares just in case, but I don’t see this having an impact past Standard. $3-4 seems reasonable during the first weeks, but just remember to not play bad madness cards to enable this guy. You’re not exactly cheating creatures into play for a lower cost, you’re just removing a “cost” from your discard spells.

Tainted Chains

taintedchains

Flash, flying

When Tainted Chains enters the battlefield, target spirit gains hexproof until end of turn.

You can cast spirit spells as though they had flash.

Jason Alt – I have no idea. I am inclined to say this is a weird casual tribal card. So far I haven’t seen anything that indicates we’re going to see worthwhile spirits and enough to build a deck around. This could be a narrower Plaxmanta if we don’t have a real spirits deck since this can only grant any upside to spirits and is a Vampire Interloper otherwise. I don’t like this, but I could like it later. There are plenty more cards to spoil.

DJ Johnson – Something bulky this way comes. I don’t think Spirits will get a whole ton of love this set, so this is just a bone thrown to the six people in the world who want to build a ghost deck and then spend $500 at an alterist to get all their cards to look like some variation of Casper the Friendly Ghost. Those people won’t want to pay more than a dime on this card because they already wasted all their money on the alters.

3/14/16 Update
Foul Orchard Cycle

foulorchard

Jason Alt – Golgari Guildgate broke limited and had to have its power level attenuated. Good on them for completing the Elfhame Palace cycle after everyone begged them not to for years. This isn’t as much for finance as it is to show that there are 15 cards after Woodland Stream, so probably 3 of each basic, which means there could be a lot of non-basics to go between Forsaken Sanctuary and Woodland Stream. These giveth hope and they taketh hope away.

DJ Johnson – You should probably buy out TCGplayer of all these, then list them for $4.50 a piece. It’s literally impossible to lose.

Pious Evangel/Wayward Disciple

Untitled

Jason Alt –The perfect cleric. This has so much EDH utility that I can’t imagine foils stay sane for too long. This does everything you want a card to do in an Ayli deck and it occupies one card slot to do two jobs. Foils, folks. Snap ’em.

DJ Johnson – Man, the flavor on this thing is sweet. While Jason is correct that this goes in Ayli without fail, that’s one deck. You have to find that person who is building Ayli and then find the one who’s foiling it out in order to sell these. Don’t let it join your bulk foils, but be realistic about how easily it is to move this crazy cultist.

Drogskol Cavalry

drogskolcavalry

Jason Alt – Sometimes you like a card a lot and it’s still bulk. This is one of those cards. This is stupid in EDH, which won’t be enough to bring its price up and it’s too slow for Standard which would be. I love this, especially with Doubling Season or Boon Reflection, but that doesn’t make this not a bulk rare.

DJ Johnson – Sometimes, you don’t even need to read the rest of the words on a card to know that it’s a bulk rare. Buuuuuuulk rare. One of my biggest pet peeves about cards like this is that they could have done almost anything else to “buff” the card, keep it at a garbage level for competitive play, and make it slightly less garbage for casual. Really? You think this would have broken the Limited format if had been a 5/5, or cost 6 mana instead? I just hate seeing cards that were designed to be extremely bad out of fear of being overpowered in Limtied.

Startled Awake/Persistent Nightmare

Untitled

Jason Alt – Remember that time you heard your cat throwing up and you snapped awake only to permanently forget 25% of everything you ever knew? Me neither.

Jokes about the stupid flavor aside, this is a stupid card that’s slow and bad and clunky and casuals are losing their collective minds over this card. It will never be truly bulk and I think Mind Funeral shows the surprising amount of money this could fetch, irrespective of how good it looks on paper (or doesn’t). This card could surprise people.

For the record, when I said something about a flip sorcery last week in my Gathering Magic article, I was joking.

DJ Johnson – On one hand, Mind Funeral and Glimpse the Unthinkable exist. On the other hand, Breaking // Entering is a card that I own 50+ of, and have been sorely disappointed by nonexistent returns. Just because it mills people for a good chunk of cards does not prevent it from being bulk status. This will hit bulk mythic status and while it won’t be an insane pickup, you could do worse. Remember that you’re paying 5 mana, waiting a turn, and then hoping they don’t trade it for their 1/1 if you want to get it back. It costs twice as much as Breaking // Entering, and mills less than half the cards.

Nephalia Moondrakes

nephaliamoondrakes

Jason Alt – I can’t think of a format other than EDH that wants this, which is to bad because Archetype of Imagination is a card and so is Wonder. This very expensively and non-permanently does a small effect. This wins you some Limited Games, but so would a 5/5 flying for 5UU. Bulk.

DJ Johnson – I’ll be honest; I looked at the mana cost, the artwork, then the little words at the bottom that said”Intro Pack”, and I don’t need to read anything else. Bulk.

Sinister Concoction

sinisterconcoction

Jason Alt – This card is sweet. If you can, get foils because that’s the only way to make money and because the green ghosts on the foil are going to look amazing.

DJ Johnson – This is a cute way to enable delirium and madness in Limited, although I don’t think that’s the main reason you play this card. This is condition-less (well, for the target at least) removal, but I don’t think that transitions well into Constructed, Commander or Standard. Stay away.

Angel of Deliverance

angelofdeliverance

Jason Alt – This card is very tricky to judge. I think it’s likely too slow for Standard, at least for the time being which means its price upside is Limited. EDH wants this in quite a few decks and it’s actually good enough to build around a little bit, but ultimately that won’t move the needle on non-mythic rares much more than keeping it above bulk. This is dumb with cards like Chandra’s Ignition, though. This won’t be bulk but I can’t see it pre-selling for a price I want to pay, either.

DJ Johnson – I really enjoy when Jason and I disagree, because that makes the set review more interesting for us to write. It sucks to constantly parrot each other on some of the more obvious stuff, and it’s better for you as a reader to get multiple dissenting opinions so that you can make your own choice. I’m personally going to call this bulk and refuse to buy any of these for more than a nickel. 8 mana more than Angel of Serenity, equal to old-Avacyn, and more than Angel of Despair. I really don’t expect any deck other than Kaalia to even consider this, and being a Launch Party crushes this even further.

Descend Upon the Sinful

descenduponthesinful

Jason Alt – So is this Martial Coup or is it Crush of Tentacles? That’s the real question.

The Spikes on reddit seem to think this is a mite too slow to save you and if this doesn’t see Standard play, it’s in trouble. EDH can prop this up a bit, but it is going to take Standard adoption to move this price and it’s not looking too good. This is no Terminus because while it’s sometimes better than its base effect, it’s never cheaper. That’s a problem. This is a $7 preorder and I think it’s quite possible to lose money buying at that price, even with how high we saw cards like Crux of Fate get in the short term. I’m bearish.

DJ Johnson – I think Delirium is going to be a lot harder to set up in Standard than people expect. This doesn’t help you put anything into the graveyard to get the angel afterward, and I do not want to buy in at $7. I expect it to drop pretty close to bulk, at which point you buy in if you expect to need them in the future for Standard.

Anguished Unmaking

anguishedunmakingpromo

Jason Alt – Wowzers. This card does quite a bit and it does it at Instant speed. With EDH player currently happy with cards like Unmake, this could make a real splash. This is also going to be played in Standard quite a bit. I would compare this to Hero’s Downfall and buy accordingly. I don’t like the art on the gameday promo too much, which makes me sad, but I bet enough people like it that it doesn’t hurt the upside of the promo, which is significant, too much. This card is $8-$10 on eBay and that seems relatively likely to be the price moving forward, although it’s more likely to end up lower than that than it is to end up higher in my view.

DJ Johnson – Does anyone else get a “Cutscene from a PS2 JRPG” feel from the Game Day promo, or is that just me? I don’t think this will stay at the $8ish pre-sale price, but this is obviously not going to be bulk. Very powerful card, but 3 life is a lot. I think we can expect this to hang around from $4-5 for at least a few months.

Wolf of Devil’s Breach

wolfofdevilsbreach

Jason Alt – I was going to be a little more dismissive of this card at first but then I remembered another similar curve-topper named Arc Slogger and how perfect that card was at finishing the game. Is this another Arc Slogger? It’s slower, more mana-intensive, harder to activate multiple times, harder to fuel with an empty hand and doesn’t have the benefit of turn 2 LD like the Ponza deck did.

This is a $9 preorder and that doesn’t seem quite right to me. This has to attack to do anything, is card disadvantage and is only playable if the rest of Standard is slow enough to run this. 5/5 for 5 is good, though, maybe the stats are enough for it to skate by on because 1 activation could deal enough damage to end the game, especially if you draw muitiples of these. I’m not convinced I want to pay the $38 for a playset eBay is commanding currently.

DJ Johnson – You know what else is true about Arc Slogger? It came out thirteen years ago, it could activate multiple times per turn, didn’t require you to have other cards in your hand, and didn’t need to attack to trigger. This seems very slow to me, and I would not be surprised to see this hit bulk mythic. Is a 5/5 for 5 really good anymore? We live in a world where Polukranos existed, and was unplayable at certain points throughout its’ life. I refuse to buy this at anything more than bulk; I’ll wait for some pro to prove me wrong.

Nahiri, the Harbinger

nahiritheharbinger

Jason Alt – So apparently EDH characters will be introduced into the main storyline where apropriate. Nahiri is from Zendikar, I think, based on all the hedrons in her original art so I guess she is part of the story of how eldrazi invade Innistrad- because those feudal serfs armed with pitchforks don’t have enough problems.

This card is the real deal and its limited Standard appeal initially has this at a $20 preorder. That’s about where most Standard planeswalkers end up. Jace tax is a bitch, after all. I don’t know how much money we can make here. Narset seemed like a sweet Planeswalker, too, after all and people lost money on that one. You can maybe get something in the short term if you preorder now, but I don’t know if this is as good in Standard as it is in EDH, a format that won’t help its price get over $20 in the near term. I am staying away but I do love this card. I think we’re not done getting amazing planeswalkers. Could we get another Sorin? Because that would be borin.

DJ Johnson – Welcome to the first non-Core set with more than three walkers. While Nahiri certainly seems powerful enough for Standard at first glance, I’m not sure you want to pay $20 unless you’re itching to play with them out of the gate. I’m staying away until someone buylists these to me a month after the pre-release for $12 so I can resell them for $20. Cool lithomancers don’t look at vampire mansion explosions.

Archangel Avacyn/Avacyn the Purifier

Untitled

Jason Alt – Sweet sassy molassy. What a card to start with! Preordering for $100 a playset, this could stick around that price if people play it in Standard, but it would be tough. You almost assuredly lose money paying $25 for this, but how much you lose is debatable and having these in hand right away may be worth it to you. We have exactly one card from the last set over $20 so bear that in mind. I think this is going to lose some money and I think this isn’t quite as good as an EDH Commander as some people think it will be, but it will get jammed in plenty of decks. I am staying away at $25.

DJ Johnson – @RevisedAngel is beside herself. This is a spicy number that will almost certainly see play in Standard, but you didn’t need me to tell you that. If you need me for whatever reason, it’s to provide slightly less witty banter than Jason and to remind you that this is not a card that you want to pre-order at $25, at least if you have plans of selling at $50 or something ridiculous. If you’re that guy who already has his/her Standard list ready and raring requiring three copies of this, then go ahead and take the loss to rent the card for the more expensive pre-order.

Geralf’s Masterpiece

geralfsmasterpiece

Jason Alt – This seems pretty good to me and it could be the finisher a blue deck wants absent some dragons, but this is underwhelming in control and clunky anywhere else. This enables madness and delirium pretty well and if you’re helbent, it’s a 3-turn clock. I haven’t seen much that exiles so this could be a nightmare to deal with for some of their decks and if you can keep your hand free of excess lands this could be a 4/4 beater that lets you keep up a few utility spells. This is like a $4 presale which means if this performs like other $4 presale cards, you’ll lose like $3 pre-ordering. If you think it’s got upside, it has to grow a lot before it even buylists for $4. It’s clunky and I’m not confident in it. Pass.

DJ Johnson- Can this thing really fly on those wings? Let’s be real here, those do not look structurally sound with all those holes. Swords for arms? Real original Geralf, real original. This thing is an absolute monster in Limited, but I really don’t like it in Constructed. You’re putting a lot of faith into this guy when you bring him back expecting him to carry you through the rest of the game, so I think this is the Skaab Ruinator of the set. Don’t pre-order, you’ll get them for a dollar as a reward for patience.

Relentless Dead

relentlessdead

Jason Alt – This is a flavor home run, depicting the aftermath of Endless Ranks of the Dead, which people like. This also plays like a total monster, making it a combo enabler, efficient beater and all-around great card. I think the 30 people who preordered this for $75 a playset will feel silly when they see someone just listed a playset for $50. Maybe they won’t – Pain Seer sold out for $12 each on Star City Games and those people didn’t feel silly. This is better than Pain Seer so for $12.50, you have less to lose. So far this is the set’s de facto “WOW” mythic but it is mana-intensive and needs a full suite of zombies around it to make it truly effective. Modern hasn’t been able to crack the Gravecrawler deck code, Standard might not have enough zombies and the current combo infrastructure doesn’t wow me. I’m not excited to pay more than $10 a copy and even then, I’m not buying any myself. Cool card, though.

DJ Johnson – This set is reminding me how much I enjoyed the flavor of Innistrad, which I suppose would be the primary goal of a set called Shadows Over Innistrad. There’s a lot of words on this card, but it does eat up a significant amount of your mana. We’ll have to see if we get more Zombies to make this thing worth casting in Standard, but I don’t see it considering they have to split up the tribal support over like 89 different tribes for this block. Maybe in the second set of the block, but I’d put this in the same camp as Avacyn. Speculators beware, but bite the bullet if you have big plans on release weekend.

Devil’s Playground

devilsplayground

Put four 1/1 red Devil creature tokens onto the battlefield. They have “When this creature dies, it deals 1 damage to target creature or player.”

Jason Alt – This seems like a great example of a bulk rare that absolutely runs roughshod over people in Limited. I think this is too expensive for Constructed formats but this is brutal in Limited. Bulk Ware.

DJ Johnson – Bulk rare, but this will rip your face off at the prerelease. Does this mean Tibalt is in cahoots with Emrakul? WE NEED MORE CLUES.

Soul Swallower

soulswallower

Jason Alt – Hill Giant or Scute Mob? This is situationally harder to trigger than Scute Mob and grows slower but starts out bigger albeit more expensive. I don’t know, this doesn’t seem to have a deck nor do enough in the deck it would have. Remember Splinterfright? This reminds me of Splinterfright. Ask Corbin about that one.

DJ Johnson – You know what I like about bulk rares? Most of the rares in the set are guaranteed to be bulk, and this is one of them. I can’t wait to sell this card to someone at the shop who spends 18 minutes talking to me about their Delirium deck.

Declaration in Stone

declarationinstone

Jason Alt – This seems pretty sweet. Potentially clears the board quite a bit but if it does, you’re giving them big card advantage. Sorcery speed means you can’t use this to get some value out of a doomed creature. I think this plays worse than it looks – I don’t like giving my opponents cards. I’d rather give them life or lands – anything but more cards. This is no Path to Exile and its $4 preorder price makes me think there is a lot of money to be lost here. We’re losing some good white removal to rotation, though, so this may be necessary.

Here is what the Spikes subreddit has to say

DJ Johnson – There are a lot of opposing opinions on this card, but all of them are focused on whether this will see play in Standard. It’s pretty obvious that this doesn’t maket the cut in Eternal formats, and I don’t play Standard enough (at all) to know whether its’ good in that format. Regardless, I don’t want to preorder it at $4.

Thing in the Ice/Awoken Horror

Untitled

Jason Alt – Sweet flavor but this is a $15 preorder. I’m not so sure about that, bruh.

Spikes weighing in

The voice of reason

DJ Johnson – This thing caused a lot of hype, but I can’t see it breaking into any format other than Standard. It seems extremely powerful in a format where Ojutai’s Command and flip Jace are both legal, but I don’t think it makes the cut in a world where Monastery Mentor and Young Pyromancer are legal.  Preordering at 15 dollars seems absolutely insane to me; this is a large set rare in the mythic era, people. Stop the madness. I think this is a $3-4 card a month or two from now.

Mindwrack Demon

mindwrackdemon

Jason Alt – This is the kind of Faustain bargain you make with black cards. I love it. I am not sure this needs to be mythic, but this is certainly efficient, helps you never take damage from it, helps you trigger delirium for other cards and has solid stats. This is a $1 preorder and probably doesn’t go down from there meaning there is potential upside though that upside is mitigated a lot by the Duel Deck printing even though the Duel Deck art is pretty asstastic compared to the set art. I’m staying away but I’m keeping an eye on this card.

DJ Johnson – Ehh…? It’s hard to lose bets when you buy into bulk mythics at .50 or $1, but It’s equally hard to win them when the cards you’re betting on are Duel Deck material. This competes with Kalitas, Drana, Tasigur, etc. I don’t bet on this, but I’m happy picking them up at quarters then throwing them into my dollar box for that earlier guy who wants to build the Delirium deck.

Flameblade Angel

flamebladeangel

Whenever a source an opponent controls deals damage to you or a permanent you control, you may have Flameblade Angel deal 1 damage to that source’s controller.

Jason Alt – This is pretty decent. I don’t think it is going to get a ton of Standard play and largely feels like filler in EDH. Only 1 seller on eBay and he wants $20 for a playset. Sure thing, champ. This seems bulky to me, absent and entire archetype springing up around it.

DJ Johnson- Buuuuuuuuuuulk. Bulk bulk, bulk bulk bulk. Bulk, bulk bulk bulk bulk bulk. Bulk? Bulk bulk.

Bygone Bishop

bygonebishop

Jason Alt – Mentor of the Meek 2.0. You know who hated Mentor of the Meek? Standard players. You know who loved it? EDH Players. Whatever this price does, it won’t do it quickly. The good thing about this card is you can pay the mana to draw the card whenever making it less mana-intensive since you can empty your hand and refill it later. This is preselling at bulk and that seems fair. Remember, Hissing Quagmire is under $2 and that seemed like a reasonable presale at $6.

DJ Johnson- Seems fine as a bulk rare, and it gives you a couple of options. You can pick these up at dimes and then either throw them in a box and wait four years, or sell them at quarters to local players who think the card is insane. I’m inclined towards the latter, but do what you want. You control your own destiny.

Elusive Tormetor/Insidious Mist

Untitled

Jason Alt – I give this card a 10. Total. Spread over 2 categories.

Flavor – 9/10

Playability – 1/10

Bulk. Cool bulk, but bulk. Too mana-intensive and prone to blowouts.

DJ Johnson – Another card that non-competitive players will lose their goddamn minds over. The only question is whether they’re willing to jam this in their Vampire decks over their already established Captivating Vampire  and Bloodline Keeper. Even if they do, there won’t be enough people wanting it to keep it above the quarter bin.

Eerie Interlude

eerieinterlude

Jason Alt – In some situations this is better than Ghostway. In some situations it’s worse. EDH players don’t like to debate merits when they can just run both. The Duel Deck printing robs this card of a ton of potential upside so there isn’t much to discuss other than how high this could get in a few years. Don’t pre-order.

DJ Johnson – Wait, this is in the duel deck? Welp, there goes any value this card might have had in the next three years. Dimes to quarters, people; dimes to quarters. At least this might remove some of the pressure from Ghostway from being a billion dollars. Seriously, don’t buy this. I don’t even want to pay a dollar on it.

 

Please follow and like us:

Five Oath of the Gatewatch Cards to get Excited For

It’s that time again, and it doesn’t feel like it’s been that long since Battle for Zendikar, does it? Just yesterday, we were gushing about the new Eldrazi cards and going wild over Expeditions lands that were going to make us all rich.

Or maybe that was yesterday, and we were recording the Brainstorm Brewery set review (which you can find here) and getting excited about Oath of the Gatewatch. Either way.

The point is, this set looks poised to deliver in a way that Battle for Zendikar did not. While the BFZ draft format was fun (certainly better than Magic Origins), the set itself didn’t blow everyone away, thanks to a lack of objectively powerful cards and any new ground tread. Whatever the reasons for that—not wanting to upset Modern, creating a good Standard environment, late changes made to the set—there’s no doubt that Battle for Zendikar left plenty of people wanting.

And Oath of the Gatewatch delivered. The introduction of the “sixth color,” or in reality colorless mana, is a touchstone moment in Magic’s history, and we’re going to see the repercussions of it for years to come. Whether it’s with a return of Eldrazi or something else, or maybe just making colorless evergreen, Oath looks like it will forever change the future of Magic thanks to that step.

Oh, one more thing. The cards aren’t half bad, either. Let’s talk about a few of the most impactful.

Thought-Knot Seer

Thought-Knot Seer

This guy is actually nuts. It’s a mix of Brain Maggot meets Vendilion Clique, and this guy’s ability may just be better than them both. The reason Vendilion Clique is good is obviously tied to the 3/1 flying body, but there’s also the fact that unlike something like Brain Maggot—where what you take is something good and you’re guaranteeing them a good card back when it dies—Clique provides them with a random card from their deck, which the odds are is worse than the card you bottomed.

Thought-Knot Seer mixes both abilities to an even stronger configuration. Now you get to exile the card of your choice (relevant at times), but they actually have to do work to get a random card back! With V-Clique, when you take their removal spell, they have to find an answer to the faerie, but at least you’re “helping” them dig to it. With Thought-Knot Seer, they get no such help.

Pro players are excited about this card, and for good reason. I expect this to be a huge player in Standard, and while it’s certainly powerful enough to make it in Modern, the colorless requirement may hold it back some. At the very least, look for Tron to find a way to fit these into the sideboard for combo matchups.

Is $7 the right price? It’s hard to say. If the Pro Tour were Standard, I’d be happy to trade for them at that price. But it’s not, so its upside is limited in the short term. Let this get a little cheaper, then move in hard before rotation.

Linvala, the Preserver

Linvala

My castmates on Brainstorm Brewery and I disagreed heavily about this card. Frankly, I think they’re crazy to not see this as a bomb.

Linvala does something very few cards in Magic—and especially Standard—do well: help when you’re behind. Ugin is the shining example of this right now: no matter how far behind you are, he will always catch you up.

Linvala obviously isn’t as powerful as an eight-mana planeswalker, but she makes a huge impact. Imagine the following scenario, one I’m sure will occur before Linvala finishes her run in Standard: your red opponent has a few guys out and has wittled your life total down against your midrange or control deck. You’re starting to battle back, but you’re still in burn or burst range.

What answers everything possible? Linvala does. The life gain puts you out of burn range, the two bodies block, and the fact that you do get two bodies helps to guard against removal. It may not be the second coming of Thragtusk, but let’s remember that Thragtusk was pretty oppressive in Standard, so anything even approaching that is pretty darn good. And the great thing about Linvala is that if you’re ahead and she’s at her worst, then you’re already ahead! I see control decks making heavy use of Linvala before she’s done in Standard.

Financially, I think this will go lower before it goes higher. Standard right now is actually not a bad place for Linvala, but she still has a lot of competition. Again, I can’t stress how important the Modern Pro Tour is here, because it’s going to draw attention away from Standard. Let this angel hit $3 or $4, then move in hard.

Eldrazi Displacer

Eldrazi Displacer

I know everyone is psyched about this card, and for good reason. Not only is it just plain dumb with Siege Rhino, Jason Alt says it will reshape Commander as we know it. Obviously that’s a strong statement, but holy Heliod, this card does it all.

Still, it’s a rare in a set with Expeditions lands looming overhead, so I think this guy will be coming down from the $5 preorder tag, if only by a few dollars. If you want yours immediately, don’t feel bad paying this, but also don’t expect it to shoot up immediately. I love this as a long-term spec if it can avoid a reprint during its Standard run, but in that sense, you’ll have a few months before you want to pick them up.

Zendikar Resurgent

en_6op9P9wbjS

You won’t find a better Commander long-term foil bet than this, assuming the foils land in a reasonable place. Sure, it’s no Mana Reflection, but Mana Reflection is a completely absurd card, and very expensive at that. Resurgent slots perfectly into Maelstrom Wanderer decks (a card that is on the precipice of exploding in price itself), and there are a ton of other decks besides that will want this thing.

I don’t see this thing making any waves in Standard, but that doesn’t matter with such a surefire Commander hit as this. I’ll have more guidance where we see where foils land, but for now I’d be interested in picking those up this weekend.

Bonus casual card callout: Call the Gatewatch. People love planeswalkers, and a few years from now you’re going to be happy you grabbed them for bulk.

World Breaker

World Breaker

I know the Eldrazi decks can only run so many ramp targets—and I haven’t even mentioned Kozilek—but World Breaker has that baby-Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger thing going for him, and the random reach ability is actually super relevant in the current Standard format.

Just like Oblivion Sower is a key card in the ramp mirrors I expect will become more and more of a thing now and after rotation, so too is World Breaker. Hitting their lands can be very key, and there’s actually a ton of relevant enchantments running around Standard right now thanks to Silkwrap and the new Oaths that are being printed. World Breaker isn’t going to set Standard on fire, but he is going to see play, and at $3 on a mythic from a set that will only be here a few short months—and not even get a Pro Tour to show it off—I like picking this guy up this weekend.


I know I’ve only touched on a few cards here, and there are plenty more I’m excited about (Matter Reshaper, get in my Karador deck already), but I wanted to touch on the ones I find most intriguing, and in some cases worthy of picking up, heading into the prerelease.

Until next week, may your teammates always support you!

 

Thanks for reading,

Corbin Hosler

@Chosler88 on Twitter/Twitch/YouTube

Please follow and like us:

Oath of the Gatewatch Spoiler Coverage

What’s up, MTG Price fanatics? Oath of the Gatewatch will be here soon. Once again, MTG Price is your source for spoiler coverage. Get all of your updates and advice here, your favorite Magic the Gathering Finance website. Don’t agree with an assessment? That’s what the comment section is for. Think we’re killing it? Leave it there or e-mail webmaster@mtgprice.com to contact what I have to assume is Spider-Man. Let’s get into it!

While we were getting a bit of a trickle of information at first, someone opened the floodgates.

Before we discuss anything, let’s look at Battle for Zendikar fewer than 3 months later.

Untitled

2 cards above $10 and only 16 above $2. Let’s remember that when we preorder.

1/8/2016

The set is fully spoiled. We covered every rare and mythic here as well as some commons and uncommons we think will be worth looking at from a finance perspective. Thanks for reading our coverage, keep the feedback coming and check prices every day. There are a few cards that are selling cheaper than DJ and I had anticipated so there are opportunities (potentially) if the cards take off in Standard or Modern or Legacy at all. Also, the list of cards in BFZ worth more than $2 just got a little bigger as Wasteland Strangler climbs to $3ish. Make sure to pay attention to the meta as it develops as emerging tech, this time in Modern, can push rares up from bulk. Prices are not set in stone and a lot can change them, so stay vigilant and keep coming to MTGPrice for the inside dope on what’s on the move and what’s poised to do big things.

captainsclaws

Jason Alt – If you are playing an allies deck, getting a trigger is pretty saucy. If you’re playing weenies, getting a token is pretty saucy. Lots of EDH decks will want this and those same decks are already tutoring for equipment. This isn’t the most exciting equipment in the set for EDH by any means, but this could theoretically impact other formats. I still see this as a cheap if not bulk rare, but I like the effect.

DJ Johnson – the General Tazri deck probably wants this, but I don’t think that makes it a non-bulk rare. Forcibly sending a 1/1 into battle isn’t always the best idea, so you can’t even keep the token back to block and win trades while attacking with the equipped creature. I don’t think foils of this hold any premium, even though its’ primary draw is in a couple different Commander decks. Sell as soon as possible, and don’t hold onto these hoping they’ll go up.

zendikarresurgent

Jason Alt – Sweet Gideon’s jockstrap. This card is bugnutty. Buried toward the tail end of the spoiler, this card has the gas to really climb the price charts longterm. Initially probably a bulk rare, I’m going to get every copy of this card I can get my mitts on. If it does start out at $4 or more, don’t worry, it will dip at peak supply. Unlikely to get played in Standard, this is EDH gold. While not quite as strong as Mana Reflection (a $19 card) this does have the added benefit of having a built-in card-drawing engine for when you cast spells. I want every foil of this I can get my hands on. This won’t replace Mana Reflection in every deck that runs it because it doesn’t double the mana nor does it allow mana from any source to double but this does a lot of work regardless, only costs 1 more mana, and has a great second ability. If you’re playing a deck like Maelstrom Wanderer, this card is perfect. I love, love, love this card. I think the price trajectory of Dictate of Erebos is going to be a good one to watch to figure out when to buy in, provided people don’t catch on right away and overcharge for this at prerelease. This won’t be $19 but it won’t be bulk, either. EDH will see to that.

DJ Johnson – Looks like Jason and I disagree again here, so you’ll get some healthy discussion from multiple viewpoints instead of both of us just telling you whether we think something is good or bad. I honestly don’t want to play this in any of my decks over Mirari’s Wake or Mana Reflection. While the latter certainly deserves its’ $20 price tag due to a combination of low supply and uniqueness (doubling non-land mana sources), I don’t think this gets there as a non-bulk rare in the short term, so at least Jason and I agree there. . Maybe I’m wrong, but I think this just comes out a little too late compared to the other mana-doubling enchantments. The card-draw on the creature casting is certainly nice, but it just seems win-more to me. I’m perfectly happy selling these all day at $1, and I don’t feel like waiting three years for it to creep to $2.

matterreshaper

Jason Alt – I have seen a lot of positive buzz around this card that I don’t agree with, mainly concerning Modern. You don’t want to tap out on turn 3 in a combo format hoping to flip this into something good, you want to just cast something good, I think. This has a better chance of seeing play in Legacy where you’d rather just cast Shardless Agent. I think this card is overrated and even though its effect can be good, it can also be bad and it remains to be seen if someone can concoct a deck that wants to play this, something I’m unconvinced will happen.

The reddit spikes are bearish on this as well.

DJ Johnson – While the percentage of times you’ll hit off this are probably pretty high (it does hit lands), I don’t think this is something that’s going to be broken in Eternal formats. Maybe it sees play in Standard with Collected Company? Even so, I don’t think that merits a price of more than a dollar or so. I’d stay away from these and be happy shipping them to anyone who thinks that it’s going to be broken in Modern or Legacy, or I’d be happy trading for them at $1 if I was a Standard player expecting to sleeve these up in some value-midrangey-green deck.

1/6/2016

bearerofsilence

Jason Alt – Just put kicker on the stupid cards if they have a kicker ability. You already have 14 stupid keywords in this stupid set, just put kicker. Or put surge on this. How hard was that? I just made the card more interesting. Creatures can have surge, why not? Explore your stupid design space instead of just explaining an old keyword. They assigned keywords to a ton of old effects that never had them like rally for this set and then they did the opposite here. Ugh.

The card itself is fine, I guess. It’s a devoid, more expensive Gatekeeper of Malakir and that makes it rare for some reason. Maybe because it still works if they counter it? Why can’t it block, though? I hate this card and I think it will probably be a bulk rare. Expensive removal stapled to a creature is typically at uncommon but it’s also typically playable so we’ll see if this is playable enough to break the $2 mark.

DJ Johnson – I keep telling myself this is a bulk rare, but I just have a feeling that it could be powerful. If this does become bulk, I’m happy picking them up at quarters and dimes and holding onto them instead of selling at $.50. If there’s a black aggressive strategy in Standard, this can fit right into it. I feel like this would go really well with Drana, but I’m no brewer. Stay away until it hits bulk though, unless you know something I don’t (entirely possible).

thoughtknotseer

Jason Alt – This card is sweet and it’s even better in EDH. You can flicker this and strip one person’s hand and fill a different player’s up. This is a decent body on this effect which means it won’t die as easily meaning that card likely doesn’t get replaced for a while. I like this a lot and people are really excited. This could be a few bucks if people play it in some sort of midrange Eldrazi deck like the one in Modern since EDH and cube are already pretty excited. This has a lot of chances to experience upside.

DJ Johnson – This card is sweet, and it’s even better in Modern. I hear a lot of talk about this getting played in the Eldrazi deck, crippling an opponent’s hand after (or before) a Thoughtseize/Inquisition. If you don’t leave them with any ways to answer it, the card they get rewarded with for killing it ends up not mattering. While I wouldn’t pre-order these expecting a spike, I don’t hate you for trading into them or picking up your copies to play with. They saved a lot of powerful cards for the last few days of the spoiler, and this is one of them.

dimensionalinfiltrator
Dimensional Infiltrator
1U
Devoid (This card has no color.)

Flash, flying

1◊: Exile the top card of target opponent’s library. If it’s a land card, you may return Dimensional Infiltrator to its owner’s hand.

Jason Alt – This is a weird sort of Frenetic Efreet variant, but I kind of like it. It has a chance to not die but you can also use it to try and mill them out. I really can’t see this getting a ton of Standard play which means its price is really limited, but it’s still fun. The thing is, you don’t really want to exile lands from the top of their deck, so it seems odd to help them for the privilege of recasting your small creature.

Spikes aren’t thrilled.

DJ Johnson – I like weird designs like this. It’s all over the place, although I don’t think we’ll have a blue tempo deck that this type of card thrives in. This wants a Delver style deck that we don’t have, so I expect this to shrivel up and become a bulk rare. Feel free to sell or trade these to anyone who thinks that the unique ability and respectable combat stats will encourage it to become a force in Standard, because I don’t think you’re losing out by getting rid of them.

seerslantern

Jason Alt – This could replace Crystal Ball in some decks, but I’m not sure how many. Scry 2 is more than twice as good as Scry 1, if you ask me, and it all comes down to whether you think you will want some sources of colorless badly enough to take out Crystal Ball. Scry 2 is very good, but so is activating Endbringer. So this could replace Crystal Ball half the time and Crystal Ball is in 3% of the decks on EDHREC. Even foils aren’t super exciting, but they are still going to go up when this card catches on a little, I think.

DJ Johnson – I don’t think this replaces Crystal Ball. You’re paying more mana every turn for less of an effect, and it competes with hundreds of other mana rocks that do the job better. If you’re playing Crystal Ball, you really need that extra dig power and you’re not looking to split hairs by trading for a mana rock. This is rock number 748, but if you really want to hedge on the safe side then keep foils tucked away somewhere. Just don’t be spending cash on them.

warpingwail

Jason Alt – This is premium removal is Legacy and Modern if you can cough up the mana for it. This kills a lot of tough and annoying creatures. Being able to counter a Sorcery on top of it is really saucy. This basically staples two sideboard cards together so well it’s maindeckable. I imagine this is a few bucks and even more in foil. Everyone is very excited about this card and with good reason.

DJ Johnson – Jeez. Snapcaster, Deceiver Exarch, Stoneforge, Deathrite Shaman….. This kills so many things, and being an Envelop is just icing on the cake. This card is extremely powerful, and it will find homes in more than just Standard. SCG is preselling these for $8 a playset, and I don’t blame them. I think is going to be worth money for long after the set rotates out of Standard, so get your copies now if you plan on playing with them, unless you’d rather try and trade for them at the pre-release. Foils will also hold a high multiplier as long as this finds a couple of homes in the Eternal formats that a lot of players believe its’ strong in.

1/5/2016

 

sylvanadvocate

Jason Alt – One of the only creatures with landcraft, this seems OK to me. It’s Goyfy enough to get serious consideration, although this isn’t a 4/5 on turn 3 or 4 like Goyf is as often. There isn’t the right kind of mana ramp in Standard to get to the requisite lands fast enough. This is an excellent inclusion in ally decks, though. The ability to boost your manlands and Awakened lands could give this a boost also. It has a lot going for it, but I don’t know if it’s too slow for Standard. Usually when something is compared to Tarmogoyf people laugh and while this has the potential to be a big body for 2 mana, it takes way longer than Goyf does and your opponents’ stuff doesn’t count towards it, either. I’m inclined to take a gamble on this if it presells at a few bucks, but if this comes out of the gates at $6, that’s a little too much risk for me. Evaluating cards is tricky and the Spikes subreddit seems split on it. Read what they have to say.

DJ Johnson – Wait, this is an Ally? It certainly has the stats to see play in Standard, although whether it finds a deck or not is up in the air. We just don’t have the ramp that we used to, and spending spells on ramp means that you’re not applying pressure with other creatures. That leaves you with a lot of mana and a 4/5, but your opponent is still at 20 life so you’re trying to do two things at once. Whether it sees play in Standard or not, there’s definitely the “what-if” factor to make sure that it doesn’t go to true bulk. I’m always hesitant to buy into pre-sale prices, so I’d rather stay away for now.

oathofchandra

Jason Alt – Seems like a bad Roast. Draconic Roar is probably a better choice since it pairs with dragons but if you want to play Planeswalkers and not dragons, this could be your card. This just feels like the worst one in the cycle so far. I’m pretty underwhelmed. This doesn’t help you cast Planeswalkers or make them better but rather makes your clock faster which Planeswalker decks don’t really seem to care about. You play a Planeswalker to have a threat they much answer and win by the overwhelming amount of advantage they provide, not because they’re good curve-toppers in a burn deck. I don’t think I like this at all. The spikes sub seems to concur.

DJ Johnson- What does Wotc have against Chandra? She always gets the short end of the stick when it comes to Standard playability, and the ‘Walker trigger is neither immediate or board-changing. This is definitely the worst Oath we’ve seen so far, and I don’t even think the 5c ‘Walker deck in Commander wants to touch this card. Go back to playing Roast or Dragonic roar in standard. On the plus side, Chandra always gets the sassy flavor text for being hot garbage in terms of power level. “Eh, I guess I’ll help with this whole watch-keeping thing if it means that I get to throw fire at stuff.”

realitysmasher

Jason Alt – This seems really hard to deal with. Trample and Haste means this card is a threat immediately. He dodges a lot of the removal in Modern and the removal that does hit him is a two-for-one. He doesn’t die to topdecked targeted removal. He doesn’t die to Siege Rhino. He smashes reality right in the face. There aren’t many rares in Battle for Zendikar worth more than $2 but Oath is a smaller set and this could get up to $5 if it’s as good as everyone thinks. Spikey players seem really hyped about it. Not just that, the EDH subreddit seems willing to try it in quite a few decks. This could be one of the gems of the set. I’d be willing to buy a few copies under $5 to see if the hype is substantiated.

DJ Johnson – Wow, it looks like they actually were saving the power level for later in the spoiler season. This is a card that is not to be underestimated, and it reminds me a lot of Thundermaw Hellkite from a “shut up, you’re taking damage this turn” perspective. It will always be a 2 for 1 for the control deck trying to deal with it through targeted removal, and trying to Ruinous Path this only for them to slam down another one immediately after seems just backbreaking. This is the card that makes painlands worth playing solely for the colorless. This card makes you want to find a source for true colorless. Buying a playset at $15 on eBay at presale actually seems fine if you’re a Standard player who wants to smash faces. On the other hand, don’t buy a playset at $15 expecting this to be a $8 chase rare throughout its time in the format.

fallofthetitans

Jason Alt – There is a huge power difference between this with surge and without. The last time we saw a card like that, it was called Bonfire of the Damned. This is closer to Crater’s Claws that Bonfire, for sure, but this can be a 2-for-1 if you have the mana to play a spell to trigger surge and get X high enough. You need enough mana to kill the biggest of the two creatures but the upside seems worth it. I don’t really know how to feel about this card, frankly. I’m inclined to say it won’t see much play but Crater’s Claws surprised us all. I don’t think it’s worth much money, either way and if it is, it will likely tank first. Even Bonfire did that.

DJ Johnson – Oh my God, this card is absolutely backbreaking in 2HG. You basically just auto-win the game if you draw it in a 2HG scenario, because you get to target each opponent separately, and double the damage. So you let your teammate cast a spell to trigger Surge, then you cast this by paying six mana for X = 5, targeting Player 1 and Player 1. That’s 10 damage to the dome for 6 mana, with the versatility of instant speed, the ability to target creatures, and split damage however you want.

Oh, right. Standard review and all that. I think this could actually seen some play. The only cards we’ve seen so far that appear specifically designed to enable Surge are Bone Saw and Oath of Nissa, and this doesn’t go in the same decks as those. However, I think the versatility previously mentioned more than makes up for it. It’s preselling at $8 a playset on eBay, and I think that’s more than fair if you want to cast them. It’s interesting to note that these seem alright as a 4-of, because you can use one to proc the others’ Surge cost in an emergency by declaring X=0 on the first, then using the second as a powerful instant speed removal spell or face-burner.

inverteroftruth

Devoid (This card has no color.)

Flying

When Inverter of Truth enters the battlefield, exile all cards from your library face down, then shuffle all cards from your graveyard into your library.

Jason Alt –This is a weird card. I didn’t expect another mythic to be spoiled which is cool. I don’t know how to feel about this card, unless I’m trying to win with Laboratory Maniac, I guess. While you could use Delve cards to sculpt your graveyard and stack your deck with sicko removal spells and fat creatures, you would need to be late in the game to do that. If you have 5 or 6 cards in your yard when you cast this, that may give you enough turns to go aggro. This is the same rate as Desecration Demon but it’s terrible in multiples. It’s well costed but I’m on the pessimistic side of the fence. Spikey players seem split. If this does take off, it could be hard to know how much it could be worth since it’s not great as a 4-of in the deck necessarily. It IS a mythic, though, so anything can happen. This also has the potential to get a bump after Khans block rotates and we look at this block again.

DJ Johnson – Woah. I love the design of this thing, and I’m really surprised that they didn’t spend the design space on a Demon. This reminds me a lot of Desecration Demon were it could go down to $1-3, then suddenly spike out of control if it finds a home in Standard. You’ll be gambling if you buy in because you’re betting on what Standard will look like 12+ months from now, but everything about this card screams gambling already. Either way, it’s really interesting and hard to predict. If you know one way or another whether this will be garbage or a staple, then you’re wrong. I’m suggesting to hold off buying at presale just to be on the safe side, but I wouldn’t be surprised if this found a home at some point in its’ Standard life.

dranaschosen

Jason Alt – This card is likely slower than I think it is and I think it’s pretty slow. On turn 5 this stops being summoning sick and then if you have another ally, you can tap it and this to put in a tapped zombie that will untap on turn 6. This doesn’t make a surprise blocker in combat, it doesn’t make a big enough creature to really threaten them, it doesn’t make an ally. Cohort is a bad ability, I think, and this is a bad example of it making it a bad card. Stay away. This looks even worse in EDH where you have cards like Cemetery Reaper to compare it to.

DJ Johnson – Bulky bulk rare is bulk. I didn’t even know that the Token came in tapped until I read Jason’s review. This shouldn’t make the cut of any Commander deck ever, unless you’re absolutely desperate. You can’t even tap non-Allies to get the creature in a Meren deck or something.

hedronalignment

Jason Alt – A casual card that can’t be played in EDH? Sign me up. I am generally in favor of cards like this that are tough to win with but provide a nice deckbuilding challenge, but unlike The Cheese Stands Alone, this isn’t EDH-playable, even with cards like Copy Enchantment to try and get there. This is a bulk rare, which makes me sad. Biovisionary is a cool card and I wish this were equally cool.

DJ Johnson – I find it funny that people are seriously brewing with this card for Legacy, because it shows a lot of synergy with Intuition. You put one in your hand, two in the graveyard, then it’s easy to exile one from the graveyard with any number of artifacts or Delve costs to just put you one Exodia piece away from a handshake. (Sorry, I just started rewatcing the original Yu-Gi-Oh! series on Netflix). It’s easy to pitch to Force of Will or Misdirection, and Legacy has an interesting number of ways to tutor it up while trying to win. I’m not saying that this will be anything above a bulk rare, but I can almost guarantee some SCG pro is going to lose a bet and build a Legacy deck around this at an open someday.

bondsofmortality

Jason Alt- This is going in a lot of EDH decks. Get foils if you can for cheap. People are very excited about this card.

DJ Johnson – I was about to call Jason an idiot and dismiss this, but then I reread the card. That helps sometimes. I initially though you had to sacrifice it to gain the Arcane Lighthouse effect, but you uh, don’t. Sorry Geist of Saint Traft/Uril the Miststalker/Sigarda, this card is absolutely bonkers. It’s still probably a true bulk or fake bulk rare, but it’s still a powerful card that will have demand from a lot of Commander players. Like Jason said, foils will be hot.

balothnull

Jason Alt – Foils of this card are likely good for EDH, so be on the lookout.

DJ Johnson – As a representative of the Golgari Swarm, I really don’t think this card is all that great. You’d rather play Greenwarden of Murasa in the slot, and the six-drop slots are mostly taken up by other big fatties like Grave Titan. Maybe the foil will be worth a couple dollars, but I don’t think this card is good enough to earn a slot in any decent deck.

1/4/2016

corruptedcrossroads

Jason Alt – They must have gotten all of my letter where I said “Please print a narrow Mana Confluence that is only good for exactly one set then make 14 lands just like it so the rare in every pack is a stupid land that’s only usable in Limited” because I said that.

DJ Johnson – I’m really annoyed that they neutered this card so hard. They could have let you use the mana of any color towards any colorless spells, or abilities of colorless permanents. That would at least make it interesting for Sunburst decks, and make it cute with Door to Nothingness. Oh well. Bulk rare.

eldrazidisplacer

Jason Alt – This is very good. This is a mistmeadow witch that doesn’t force you to play blue (you’re probably already playing blue, though, aren’t you?) This pairs well with Sun Titan and Sun Titan brings this back. I don’t see non-foils doing anything short-term, but foils will likely go fast. This is a real EDH card and while it remains to be seen how likely people are to monkey with their manabases to produce true colorless more consistently, we already know there are a ton of decks like Brago and Roon just waiting to do dumb stuff with this card. We may see EDH players get impatient and move in on these in a hurry. This is a white Deadeye Navigator only it can be used to tap the opponents’ creatures in a pinch. This is very exciting.

DJ Johnson – Jason called this the most relevant Commander card in the set, and I’m inclined to agree. This is extremely versatile, and can blink their creatures while returning them tapped for an alpha strike. You’re probably going to play this to abuse enter the battlefield triggers in a deck like Brago or Geist of Saint Traft, but you can get a massive amount of value by going for the long game with Sun Titan, which just oozes value. If you can produce enough coloreless to activate this repeatedly every turn, it’s going to put the game out of reach. While I don’t think this is worth more than $1-2, the foils will definitely be worth keeping an eye on.

sifterofskulls

Jason Alt – This seems very good, also. I would like to see a Standard aristocrats list materialize since saccing creatures isn’t as punishing with the processors to mulch your dead friends. Zulaport Cutthroat is a juicy card and I want to find some way to exploit it in Standard. This is fine in EDH, I guess, but I feel like we want something like Fecundity in this spot, maybe? I don’t know. If you’re doing Grave Pact Shenanigans, saccing a dude and getting a trigger and the dude being replaced by a Scion you can also sac for another trigger seems fun. A lot of decks might want to try putting this in, but taking something out has always been the hard part and what do the decks that would jam this take out?

DJ Johnson Blood Artist makes me happy. This card makes me happy. I really want to find a spot for this in Savra, but the card and tokens being colorless hurts that deck in particular quite a lot. However, this definitely looks powerful to find a spot in Meren, and probably earns the spot over the Fresh Meat/Caller of the Claw Eldrazi that was spoiled earlier. I don’t think that this ends up being worth more than a dollar and it could definitely be a bulk rare, but unplayable this is not. We’re in the same category as Restoration Eldrazi right above us; $1-2 non foils, with shiny copies worth significantly more.

overwhelmingdenial

Surge UU (You may cast this spell for its surge cost if you or a teammate has cast another spell this turn.)

Overwhelming Denial can’t be coutered by spells for abilities.

Counter target spell.

Jason Alt – This does not seem good to me. Maybe I am being pessimistic and maybe my pessimism is colored by all of the things I hear being said in defense of this card and how wrong they are. No, Legacy likely does not want this. 1 or 2 Legacy lists have been known to run a copy or two of Counterspell but being uncounterable doesn’t make up for how clunky this is, I don’t care if you’re counting on Brainstorming into it. No, this is not good with Snapcaster Mage. You can’t pay the Surge cost if you give the spell Flashback. You can pay 4 mana for the spell plus two for Snapcaster. That’s a terrible 2-card combo that costs 1 more mana than hardcasting Force of Will, and not a reason to be excited about this card. We have had uncounterable counters before. No one cared then, either.

Spikey players seem to mirror my sentiments so far.

DJ Johnson: Ugh. Last Word this is not, and at least that card is $1 or so. They really don’t want two mana counterspells to be powerful, or playable in the early game at any level of consistency. Maybe things would have been different if Wotc had been designing Oath of the Gatewatch in 2009, but we’re six years past that and we’re acknowledging that this is a bulk rare.

oathofgideon

Jason Alt – I have seen a lot of EDH players excited by the prospect of flashing this out and returning it to play for value and I’m not sure how excited I am about doing the same. Planeswalkers entering with an additional counter is certainly interesting and this is a nice 1-2 punch with Gideon in Standard, I suppose. Still, I feel like there have to be better ways to Raise the Alarm. I don’t know what to do with this card. EDH players who want this will most likely be building a Superfriends deck  and I don’t know if there are enough of those people to make this do anything but go down in price as weeks go by. I want to like this more than I do, but I don’t know why. If I’m wrong, tell me why.

This is what the EDH subreddit has to say.

1/1/2016

oathofnissa2

DJ Johnson – HA! That was my first time writing out 2016, and I didn’t screw it up and have to backspace. We’re off to a great start in the new year. Speaking of great starts, this card seems absolutely insane on turn 1. Someone should (and will) correct me if I’m wrong, but this seems really strong. The second ability probably isn’t relevant at all in Standard because we already have rainbow mana everywhere, but did we just got our first decent one mana cantrip since…… Thought Scour? I don’t know. I don’t even know how much these are pre-selling for, because our spoilers come hot off the presses, and there aren’t even any eBay auctions up yet. I think this card is very powerful and playable in Standard, but I still wouldn’t pay more than $2 a piece out of the gate(watch).

Jason Alt – Like so many cards, this is entirely dependant on its ability to find a deck, and most likely, a deck in Standard. A non-mythic rare in the post-mythic era in a set with Expeditions is going to have to do its best “Little Engine that Could” impression to get over $1. With MODO not being any fun to play and continuing to be a frustrating experience, MODO redemption costs being at an all-time high, Expeditions muddling things and it being easier than ever to get singles from a ton of sources, there may be nothing enforcing the cost of a set which can depress a lot of rares without making a mythic go way up to compensate. Expeditions are pulling most of the weight despite being a lottery ticket more than an insert you can trust. I guess what I’m saying is I don’t like this for any presale price unless it’s a 4-of in multiple decks in Standard. I like this a lot but I am not sure I see it. Green Ponder has legs, but I don’t know if they’re long enough.

However, if you see people talk about running this as a 4-of in Abzan or something, there is money to be made here.

stoneforgemasterwork

DJ Johnson – Alright. So we’re paying 60% of the cost of Coat of Arms, and getting a fraction of the effect. While Coat is worth $8 even with a billion reprints, I don’t think we’ll see that kind of growth in this card. We don’t want to spend our early turns in a Tribal deck playing equipment, we want to play out the cheap creatures so that we have a critical mass when its’ time to play Coat on turn 5 or 6. This screams bulk rare to me, since its’ definitely not going to see play in Standard or Modern. There’s just infinitely more useful pre-existing Tribal support in Commander, so I don’t think we need to spend our time and mana going wide and tall at the same time. These will be dimes in a short amount of time, and I think you’ll be hard pressed to find anyone looking for them.

Jason Alt – I think DJ’s off base, here. This card is the shiznit in quite a few decks and does a decent impression of Coat of Arms in a lot of others. The thing to remember is that you can tutor this up. Slam this on a Kemba and watch the game win itself. The important distinction between this and Coat of Arms is that you can grab this with a Stonehewer Giant or Godo, Bandit Warlord and you can copy it with Masterwork of Ingenuity. White tribal decks won’t bat an eye when it comes to getting this every single game. That said, I wrote an article this week you should check out about what EDH can’t do to prices, and EDH can’t move the needle on non-foils of these and Standard and Modern won’t care about this card. Foils of this have potential – we’ll have to see if it’s under a 5x multplier initially, but non-foils will be bulk, pretty much irrespective of its playability and that’s just how it is with EDH cards.

wanderingfumarole

DJ Johnson – And here’s the Izzet manland. There was a lot of worry that it would be a functionally identical creature to Izzet Keyrune, and I’m glad to see that isn’t the case. This plays well on defense when you need it to, and it can trade with X/4s. Izzet wants options, and this gives us a lot of versatility. Want to eek some damage in on an open board state? Turn it into a 4/1 and get in there. Oh, they’re trying to Bolt it? Turn it back into a 1/4 and make sure it survives. Maybe this won’t see as much play as I expect it to because the activation cost is relatively high, but I think this is powerful enough to stay par for the course with Shambling Vent and the following Golgari manland. Either way, I wouldn’t preorder them if you want to save a few dollars. Hold your clicker finger, and wait it out if you don’t desperately need them for opening week.

Jason Alt – If your opponent burns this in response to the initial activation there isn’t much you can do to save it and that sucks. The last thing that hits the stack is either it turning into a 4/1 or becoming a 1/4 with 3 damage on it then flipping into a doomed 4/1. State-based effects are a bitch. Whether you activate it once or twice in response to the bolt, it dies. This isn’t as saucy as we want, but it’s still pretty cool. Spikey players like this more than I do and you can see what they’re saying about it to see if it’s worth paying more than $5. For the record, the other manlands ended up at $5ish for Shambling Vent and under $2 for Lumbering Falls. Playability matters, but not much can take it over $5.

12/31/15

hissingquagmire

DJ Johnson – WHOOOOOO! I mean, I guess it’s probably fine in Standard Abzan and stuff like that, but I’m just glad because Life from the Loam is one of my three favorite Magic cards in existence, and I want to block big durdly things in Commander all day long. $5-6 at release, then $3-4 in the weeks following. Think Shambling Vent for a corollary here, not Lumbering Falls. I don’t think this one sees play in Modern though; Twilight Mire and Raging Ravine work together too well to give up any slots in the deck, except maybe as a one-of.

Jason Alt – This is the second man-land that seems better on defense than offense (the first was Stirring Wildwood) and I don’t know if that bodes well or poorly. This is an uncounterable way to murder a siege rhino or make it stay home, and having a man-and whose power and toughness are mostly irrelevant is odd. The man-lands in the last set did OK and this one has a better chance of being worth more being in a smaller set with durdlier cards. Still, what the man-lands didn’t do last time was ever exceed their presale price. Buy accordingly.

generaltazri

DJ Johnson: I really like the design of this card. They managed to make a 5 color general for Allies, while not butchering the casting cost of the creature. Foils of this are almost certainly going to be worth a pretty penny even after the initial hype of the set dies down, although non-foils are pre-selling at $20 a playset on eBay. I think that they’ll dip into the $3 range after the first few weeks, but this is a Commander foil that won’t be skimped over by the competitive crowd. Anyone who knows what Commander is will know that this is not a foil that will let be let go of easily.

Finance aside, it really frustrates me that we get another five mana Ally in this block. There were six total in Battle for Zendikar, and three of those were rare already. What’s the point of making a tribe where the goal is to play a lot of creatures onto the board that benefit each other, when they all cost a billion mana? I don’t even play Allies or have any desire to build the deck, but I feel so bad for anyone that was actually hyped about putting them together in Standard, or integrating new tech into the Modern version. We have one Ally in the entire block that costs 1 mana so far, and three in three different colors that cost 2 mana. Have fun with that.

Jason Alt – This card made James Chillcott go deep on Ally Encampment. That’s probably the right idea. The entire series I write about EDH is predicated on the notion that new printings have a better chance of pushing older cards up. Ally Encampment isn’t old, but it has equilibrated based on older information and now that circumstances have changed, demand is sure to be higher. Look at Sliver Hive for a few clues into Ally Encampment’s future. As for this card, it’s the Legendary Ally creature that EDH needed. This is white but if you know EDH, you know that the colors in the activated ability count towards its color identity meaning this can be your general in a 5-color Ally deck. This will be a good, valuable foil but I don’t expect the non-foil version to do much. Read my article from this week. This card is Nekusar, not Forced Fruition. This will drive prices up and it is a surprise we got another mythic in white but only EDH and casual care about this expensive, durdly card.

deceiverofform

DJ Johnson – Did you need to clone something on your side of the board? How about waiting until you have seven mana, going into combat, hoping the top card of your library is a creature that’s actually going to benefit the rest of your creatures that you’ve somehow managed to play while also ramping to seven mana, then getting blown out by realizing your opponent killed you three turns ago? In all seriousness, this card is a bulk rare. It’s a really weird bulk rare that wants you to make a bunch of Scions, not use them to ramp into a seven mana Eldrazi, then hope the top card of your library is another big Eldrazi that you could have been ramping into. Zero applicability in Standard or Modern, and there are better colorless monsters to run in Commander.

Jason Alt – This probably isn’t playable in Standard, but you probably knew that. What you may not have known is that this probably isn’t as good in EDH as you may have thought. Creatures in EDH really need to have good abilities that trigger on your turn like Consecrated Sphinx or Seedborn Muse or abilities that trigger when they come into play like Avenger of Zendikar or Stoneforge Mystic. One use I do see for this is in a deck with a lot of tokens. While it’s true that power and toughness aren’t as relveant in EDH which isn’t necessarily a format where you swing at people, in a deck with creatures with Battalion, for example, this is nuts. All of the tokens you get from Assemble the Legion are now copies of Firemane Avenger. That seems good. I don’t know if it pulls it out of bulk rare range, but it at least seems fun, albeit random and chaotic.

oathofjace

DJ Johnson: Cycle, anyone? We can expect a similar Oath from Chandra, Nissa, and Gideon, but where does that leave black? Are we going to get an Oath of Ob Nixilis where he’s saying “I do solemnly swear to destroy Zendikar once and for all”? I dunno, I’m not a lore guy. I do know that this is a bulk rare, because turning Compulsive Research into a permanent that lets you scry when you’re winning means one thing. It means my friend Jon who plays the planeswalker deck in Commander wants exactly one copy, nothing more. The same will be true for every Jon in your group. The design is interesting, but that doesn’t make it valuable. Although I do hope this becomes a Standard deck with Starfield of Nyx….

EDIT: After reading some feedback, I accept this could definitely see play in Standard considering it helps flip Jace almost instantly, and Gideon can add to the support. Playsets are $10 on eBay right now, which seems safe if you plan on playing with them immediately after the set release and already have a plan for a deck. Instead of pure bulk rare status, I think it’s safe at $1-2 depending on the nest it might find in a UW shell.

Jason Alt – Even if some Jace/Gideon deck emerges, I don’t know if a card that is a sorcery-speed Brainstorm that lets you scry, let’s face it, 1 every turn is going to be more than the $3 or so it is right now. It’s tough for a non-mythic to break the $1 mark these days. This rewards you for doing something you already like doing in blue decks which is playing Jace, but this card isn’t great without Jace. I’m really torn. Someone help me see a scenario where you’re glad you paid $3 for this presale.

12/30/15

linvalathepreserver

Linvala, the Preserver

Jason Alt – When it looked like all of the mythics were spoiled for the set and some colors had two mythics, white had 0 and there were 9 instead of the 10 we’d anticipiated, people speculated there would be a white mythic and it would be bonkers since it was kept under wraps. Well, now we know. It’s very, very far from bonkers. This is incredibly disappointing. This won’t even get put in Roon or Brago EDH decks, it’s way too slow to be a Timely Reinforcements in Standard and Modern and Legacy only cheat Angels into play if their name is Iona. This card is worse than a lot of angels that are just rare. I don’t know what happened to Linvala since the Eldrazi last rose, but she got real bad and durdly in the interim.

DJ Johnson – Well this is a disappointment for anyone who was hoping a decent return of Linvala. I knew that we wouldn’t get a reprint of the legendary creature from Rise of the Eldrazi, but I would have preferred something that was at least a little bit Constructed playable. Timely Reinforcements is extremely powerful, but that’s because it costs half as much as Linvala, while gaining the same amount of powers’ worth of tokens and even more life. Being Snapcasterable helps too. It might be worth playing in Standard if the power level post-rotation is low enough, but forget anything past that.

remorselesspunishment

Remorseless Punishment

Jason Alt – This is most often going to read “Target opponent discards 2 cards and loses 5 life” which makes this a mega Blightning. I see people excited about this card and I want to stress that this suffers from the Browbeat effect that Bill Stark wrote about a decade ago when it was reprinted in Time Spiral.  This will never do what you want it to do, but what your opponent wants it to do. If your opponent is under 5 life this can wreck them, or if their hand is almost empty or if they don’t have any creatures, it narrows their choices. We call cards like that “win more” because you’re going to break their back if you’re already winning, but if they are taking you to Siege Rhino town, you’re going to wish this was a Crux of Fate. I’m inclined to say this will presell for more than it should.

DJ Johnson – This card actually gave me an idea for an article, so I’m going to save most of the words that I want to say about it until then, to save you from reading an entire page’s worth of content when I’m supposed to tell you what the card will do financially. “punisher” cards like the Tribute mechanic and Browbeat generally don’t do what *you* want them to do, but I’ve noticed that most casual players really don’t care. There’s a reason Browbeat is still worth $1.50 and Dash Hopes is a $1 common. I’d be very surprised if this hit bulk prices, and if I can get these for $.10/$.25 then I’ll buy them aggressively with plans to resell for $1 later on. This is not a constructed playable Magic card, but that doesn’t matter. More on this next week.

reflectormage

Reflector Mage

Jason Alt- This is worth mentioning because this card is nutter butters and you should snag foils. Foreign foils would be better. This keeps people off of their Commander, and if you play Roon or Brago, it does it every other turn. Cheating this into play at Instant speed or flashing it out and back in can keep them off of their Commander or another creature indefinitely. This is stupid in Limited, it’s stupid in EDH and the foils are going to be highly coveted.

DJ Johnson – This card is every Delver/Geist players’ wet dream from 2013. Easily worth $1 throughout its Standard career if it finds the right tempo deck. I didn’t even think about the Commander applications, but Jason’s right in that foils will probably hold a longer value than one would normally expect from a Standard-playable uncommon. Don’t let these be draft chaff, you’ll regret it later when grinders are hunting down playsets.

vileredeemer

“Vile Redeemer”

Devoid

Flash

When you cast Vile Redeemer you may pay ◊. If you do, put a 1/1 colorless Eldrazi Scion creature token onto the battlefield for each nontoken creature that died under your control this turn. They have ” Sacrifice this creature: Add ◊ to your mana pool.”

Jason Alt – This is either a worse Nest Invader or a clunkier Fresh Meat with feet. This is certainly a little wrath insurance if you keep mana up against a deck with Wraths. I’m not sure this is good enough to be better than bulk as effects like this, while not always attached to a creature, haven’t gotten there traditionally and this is going to be harder to acivate than you might think.

DJ Johnson – I’m a fan of Fresh Meat and Caller of the Claw, which is a card that I didn’t know got reprinted until this very second. Huh. Anyway, this card is sweet. I don’t think its’ “Standard-playable sweet”, but it’s “bulk rare or $1 rare that I will sell tons of to casual Commander players sweet”. I like Fresh Meat better because it works better with tokens and more easily insta-kills your opponents post-wrath, but I still think this effect is attractive enough to non-competitive players that you should have these in stock to trade them out at a dollar. Don’t buy into the presale price, whatever it is.

 

eldraziobligator

Jason Alt – This seems really good. As a curve-topper (you want this on 5) in an aggressive deck, you can probably deal the last 6 points of damage you need with this guy. Some midrange decks don’t start playing blockers until turn 4 and if you curve out, burn one blocker and steal another, there’s not much they can do. Stealing a big Eldrazi or something later means this isn’t a dead late topdeck. All in all, this could be punishing against midrangey decks. This could be a few bucks if Standard shakes out that way. That said, there aren’t a whole lot of BFZ rares that are over $1, so I won’t hold my breath. This likely presells for too much.

DJ Johnson – I don’t play Standard, but this seems like it has the stats to get there as the top end of an aggressive deck or to win the attrition war between two midrange strategies. That being said, I don’t think there’s enough power in the card to merit being worth more than a dollar long term. I’d draw a parallel to Mantis Rider or Radiant Flames; power level in rares doesn’t necessarily equal a “buy now!!!” strategy. Just let it be $1, and sell/trade them away at that into more tasty long-term strategies. Cards like……

12/29/15

callthegatewatch

Jason Alt – Long-term I think this card could get there, potentially. I think this will be overvalued at first due to how much hype I am seeing, then bottom out at peak supply. That seems like a good time to grab these, and if the foils aren’t ridiculous, grab the foils while the non-foil is at its low point. I don’t think this has the juice to influence Standard so it’s most like a long-term casual pick and that gives you lots of time to fill a box. If this presells for $5ish and up, stay well away IMO.

DJ Johnson – This is going to be overvalued during the first few weeks of the set. Ebay playsets are going for $8 right now, but there aren’t enough casual durdles with 60-card Superfriends decks to sustain that long term. I think this cuts in half to $1 over the next couple weeks, and you should absolutely pick these up when they hit bulk rare status. Mirroring what Jason said about the foils, because there are a lot more Commander decks built around Planeswalkers than you might expect. Don’t be in a hurry to pick these up though; you have a ton of time before they start creeping up in value.

immolatingglare

Jason Alt – This is money. You should be able to find a few loose copies for easy trade or sitting around in chaff. This is removal so solid and so easy to include in a lot of Tier  1 decks that this will be worth more money than probably half to two thirds of the rares in this durdly set. Grab these if you can.

DJ Johnson – One of the more valuable uncommons in the set for sure. Just like Battle for Zendikar, it looks like the commons and uncommons are where the power level is at instead of rares/mythics. The promo of this is beautiful, and I’m sad that it won’t be in foil. That being said, I would always trade/sell these out at $1 and the promos at whatever they’re at when you get the chance. It’s hard to find someone looking to pay a premium to make their Standard deck look pretty,and there will be a huge influx of these all at once on Game Day. Don’t get stuck holding it post-rotation. Think of it like Strangleroot Geist; Sure, that promo is technically worth a dollar or two, but who wants it? Nobody, that’s who.

ruinsoforanrief

DJ Johnson – The flavor and design of this card are fun, especially since it plays so well with older artifact creatures in Commander. Triskelion, Arcbounds, and friends love stuff like this. Unfortunately, the fact that it only puts a counter on one creature instead of “each” really puts a damper on the power level. I was excited to make Myr Battlesphere bring in 13 power instead of 8, but that’s not going to happen. This is a bulk rare, but at least it helps newer players buld Colorless commanders with a slightly higher power level without having to rely almost entirely on Wastes basics, and without spending $800 on a manabase.

Jason Alt – It’s an Oran-Rief the Vastwood that can go in any deck. As far as ways to add colorless mana to your mana pool go, you could do a lot worse than this. However, why settle for just “you could do worse” when your deck space is limited. I want this in 40-card decks, I doubt I want this in 75-card decks and I might want this in a non-zero number of 100-card decks. I already run the original, non-ruined Oran-Rief in some green decks and if I want to be activating my Endbringer, this might get a look. That said, that won’t save it from the bulk bin.

recklessbushwhacker

DJ Johnson – This. THIS. I may be a Debbie Downer about 90% of the rares in this set concerning their bulk status, but this is the kind of card you can make easy money off of. The power level is there if we can find a way to cast a one drop creature in Standard, so you should be setting these aside from the packs you open, and not letting them accumulate with your bulk. I’m not saying its’ a guaranteed buylistable card, but someone at FNM will need a set of these in a few months, and you can get an easy $2-3 in trade for doing basically nothing.

Jason Alt- If Immolating Glare isn’t the most expensive uncommon in the set, this will be. Grab as many of both as you can.

eldrazimimic

Eldrazi Mimic – Creature – Eldrazi
Whenever another colorless creature enters the battlfield under your control, you may have the base power and toughness of Eldrazi Mimic become that creature’s power and toughness until end of turn.

DJ Johnson – This reminds me a lot of Renegade Doppelganger from the original Eldrazi block. That saw a little bit of play, but it was only because Vengevine is disgusting. Eldrazi Mimic is going to take a lot more effort to get cooking; it only copies base power/toughness and not abilities, so we can’t pull any tricks with processing or other pump spells. The most you can hope for is copying Ulamog or Kozilek’s base stats in Standard, but why are you spending two mana on this for that kind of overkill instead of just ramping or drawing cards?

I am excited that you can cast it for free on turn 1 if you have Eye of Ugin, but you can only play 4 Eyes in a deck. I highly doubt the black/red Eldrazi deck that’s been cooking in Modern is going to need this, because that deck is relying more on early disruption and not playing Goblin  Pikers for the hope that it one day becomes half of a Desolation Twin. I’m going to call this a bulk rare, but with hesitation. I would actually like to pick these up at a dime, just in case. I don’t think it will go anywhere, but at least it has slight potential unlike the seven mana 6/6 elves of the set.

Jason Alt – I feel like this card is a trick. In a vacuum I’m severely underwhelmed. They could print a card later that makes this look a lot better, but I don’t know how much I like this under any circumstances. This only copies power and toughness, only from colorless creatures and only off of creatures played after you play this guy, making it a garbage late-game topdeck. Blech.

12/28/15

It’s been about 10 days but we got a slew of spoiled cards today, so let’s get to it.

stonehavenoutfitter

Stone Haven Outfitter

Jason Alt – As an EDH player,  I am obviously hyped about a kor guy that deals with equipment, especially one that makes Skullclamp read “Draw 3 cards instead” when your Skullclamped creature dies. I don’t know that anyone is building Kor decks, even with Ayli, eternal pilgrim and Armament Master and all kind of other creatures running around. This is a weird card and based just on EDH play, I don’t see this getting above bulk.

The real question is whether Standard and Modern can do something with this card. Is this strong enough to make an equipment deck better than the Boggles deck? I really tend to doubt it. Equipment is clunky in Modern and with Stoneforge Mystic banned for the time being (although a lot of people are buying in heavily, banking on an unban – behavior we have seen before) it seems really even more unlikely.

Standard lacks good equipment for this card. Ghostfire Blade and Sword of the Animist are unlikely to be enough of an impetus to play this card in Standard and the bonus is too small to play clunky cards. This isn’t Puresteel Paladin and it shows. I think this is likely a bulk rare.

Douglas Johnson – This is much more awkward to combo with than Puresteel Paladin. It’s asking you to go wide and equip multiple creatures instead of just Voltron-ing everything onto one guy, so Skullclamp seems like the strongest way to abuse the trigger multiple times. Unfortunately, it actually makes Skullclamp itself harder to abuse, because your ‘clamped guys will end up getting +2/+0 instead of -1 toughness, so you can’t just pay 1 colorless for each time you want to draw 3; you’ll have to have a sacrifice outlet.

I’m calling it a bulk rare right now, so get ready to sell it to the local Kemba/Nahiri player as soon as you open it. SCG is selling it for a dollar right now, so that should give you some insight into the vendor confidence of the card as a presale.

R/Spikes post about this card.

jorienruindiver

Jori En, Ruin Diver

Jason Alt – I don’t think you want this as your EDH General, personally. If anyone played Tiny Leaders, this might be good in that, but no one does. This puts you in somewhat good colors to be playing a ton of cantrips, but it’s not better than Talrand or Melek and doesn’t really enable much. I like this card but I don’t know where I like it.

Modern Merfolk might want to toy with this a bit, but it’s hard to see people splashing red to draw cards when they can easily jam Sygg, River Cutthroat instead without having to monkey with a manabase that has a bunch of mutavaults in it.

Standard is where this card shines least. With the current Standard card pool, there aren’t really enough enablers. Could we get some cheap cantrip artifacts? Maybe. Maybe a Chromatic Star or something that can help us in Limited when we greedily take all of the non-Basic land that produces colorless mana. Still, I don’t think I like this card much in Standard. This is a bulk rare if it doesn’t find a home, which is too bad because it rewards you well for playing a very specific game people are already playing. It’s just that other cards do it better.

DJ Johnson – Call me cynical, but I don’t see any reason to get excited over this card. There are better Commanders for Izzet spellslinging (Melek and Mizzix are way better at chaining off instants and sorceries for a fiery finish), so you have to ask yourself if this is worth playing in 60-card land. Wizards just doesn’t want to give us cheap cantrips anymore, because they learned that Spikey players can abuse the hell out of them with low cost, blue, aggressive creatures. It’s sad because this is design space that’s not frequently visited, but the card just doesn’t stand up to par in power level.

R/Spikes post about this card.

tyrantofvalakut

Tyrant of Valakut

Jason Alt – Every once in a while, a big, durdly red dragon will get printed that’s amazing in EDH. The Standard crowd will ignore it and it will go on to be worth a ton of money because of how busted in EDH it is. This isn’t that dragon. Bogardan Hellkite is always better.

A lack of surge enablers is going to cripple this card in Standard and in 2HG Limited, any dragon is good. This is great for that and basically only that and that’s fine. A lot of cards that might not have been bulk are likely getting made bulk by the Expeditions anyway, so quibbling about whether this is a $1 or $1.50 card doesn’t matter. This is a dime.

DJ Johnson – I’m really sick of stupid bulk rare dragons getting a spot in every single set. I know why they get printed, and I know that they continue to sell packs to non-competitive players, but it sucks for the rest of us who want to see interesting design space, unique abilities, and non-garbage rares. The surge rate isn’t actually all that horrible for Standard, but we’re not going to have stuff like Gitaxian Probe or Preordain to precursor this in a two-player game. It’s unplayable if you’re not Surging into play, so I’m not going to spend anymore words talking about my grievances with a dime.

gladehartcavalry

Gladeheart Cavalry

Jason Alt – Yuck. a 7 drop, 6/6 elf? What a flavor fail. Sure, this bolsters (nope, can’t use that verb since it’s a dumb, useless keyword ability just like support) 6 creatures, which is great if you’re already winning. A 7-drop should be able to pull a game out of the toilet and this doesn’t do that. In a deck with a lot of mana dorks, this could come out early and makes those dorks into real beaters and you could gain 14 life if they wrath, but your life total doesn’t matter against control. This card is just so clunky. This is likely a bulk rare.

DJ Johnson – Do you need to gain 12 life as a consolation prize after your opponent Wraths seven of your creatures away on turn 9? Do you want to feel the nostalgia of casting Vizzerdrix in a green deck? Do you really hate Magic and want an excuse to go back to Card Fight Vanguard? Say no more! I’d like to offer you an incredible deal on the new “Gladehart Cavalry” Magic: The Gathering MTG card. For a mere $.10 + shipping/handling, this card can be YOURSSSS!!!!

mundasvanguard

Munda’s Vanguard

Jason Alt – Allies are a deck that people are going to try to build in Standard, I’m sure. The problem isn’t enough support of allies in the form of creatures that support your other allies or lands that make it easy to play a 5-color deck. The problem is a lack of support from the rest of the set. RWG allies in the last Zendikar Standard was a deck not because of the allies in it but because Bloodbraid Elf did so much work in the deck. I worry that jamming the deck full of 5-drop durdles will make it unplayable. We didn’t see a good Slivers deck, either, and that had more support over the 2 core sets than allies is getting in the current Standard. This is a 5 drop 3/3 most of the time. If you use this ability on their EOT it means you didn’t attack with it. 5 mana for a creature you don’t attack with seems lame, although the other ally you tap can be summoning sick so that makes the cohort ability a little more palatable. Still, this is just slow and clunky and I don’t see this clawing its way out of bulk rare range.

DJ Johnson – It must be “Bulk Rare Monday” at Wizards or something. They sure know how to put a carrot in front of us to get us hyped for the new set; since all of the Expeditions and most of the Mythics got leaked early, they’re biding their time and playing the suspense game, showing us all of the bulk rares first and playing up to the grand finale of the last amazing white Mythic that hasn’t been spoiled yet. It’s either that, or the rest of the set is a load of garbage. I sure hope its’ the former.

As for actually analyzing the card…. Isn’t this the 6th five mana rare Ally in the BFZ block? Seriously, how many do they expect us to play? We still only have a single one mana Ally in Standard, and it’s Elite Vanguard. Either way, I’m certainly hyped up to tap two of my creatures in a supposedly aggressive deck to give them one more power each. Synergy at its’ finest. Bulk rare synergy.

deepfathomskulker

Deepfathom Skulker

Jason Alt – Bident of Thassa is back, but now it costs twice as much and dies to creature removal. The upside is it has a significant body on it. The downside is what deck with blue wants a 6-drop beater that requires you to manage the number of colors you play in the deck so you make sure you have enough pure colorless to activate this ability? This just seems like a card without a deck, and that’s never a good sign. Bident of Thassa got there because there were a slew of blue beaters ready to go in the deck once people saw Master of Waves for what it was. We’re no longer being rewarded for playing Mono Blue and Skulker likely has no home.

DJ Johnson – This card is pretty backbreaking in Limited, but you can pretty much say that about any creature that costs 6 and draws you more cards. Even Bident of Thassa was basically a bulk rare for its’ entire life in Standard, and it actually saw play in a Pro Tour deck during peak demand. I get that we’re supposed to be looking at this card from all angles and explaining how it *might* see play *somewhere*, but Wotc is making it really hard today by grinding the power level of this block into Eldrazi-looking dust. I don’t need to say the magic words, but I have to anyway. Bulk. Rare.   

dreaddefiler

Dread Defiler

Jason Alt – This is a little bit harder to evaluate since its ability could do a lot more damage for 4 mana than Deepfathom Skulker’s. I imagine this could get there in EDH as an ability, but I’m not so sure I like it as a creature. A vanilla 6/8 for 7 is really not exciting in that format and utility creatures usually cost a little less so you can use them a bit. Late in the game, with a full ‘yard and plenty of mana to activate this multiple times and, more importantly, activate it the turn you play it, this could get there. However, as good as it is in some instances, this isn’t better than Smothering Abomination, currently a bulk rare. Standard won’t like this more than EDH does and EDH will never push this above bulk.

DJ Johnson – The ability on this card can certainly do a lot of damage, but it requires your opponent to be playing a specific deck, and it requires you to be playing a specific format (Commander). This might get there as a 1-of in Standard in the green/black Eldrazi mirror match for after you kill their Ulamog, but I’m really reaching here. Realistically, you’re going to trade this to someone who’s trying to build an Eldrazi Commander deck for $.10. Actually, forget I just said that. Realistically, you’re going to have this sit in a bulk rare box for 3 years before you decide to bulk it out to a vendor at a Grand Prix.

12/18/15

Jason Alt – Again, just one, but it’s bugnutty for EDH and may be good enough for Standard.

endbringer

Endbringer

Jason Alt – This card is stupid good. To me, this is a better Staff of Nin. It’s got upside because there is a body attached but it’s not succeptible to all of the artifact removal in EDH. Dying to creature removal is a bother but it’s good that this can die somehow because it’s going to ruin lives. Stack the untap triggers with Prophet of Kruphix to pain a real target on your face or just grind out value for every player at the table. With Sol Ring and Pain Lands and Temple of the False God, you should be able to generate enough true colorless mana (what else do we call diamond mana?) to power this a decent amount of the time. This is practically a planeswalker in EDH and I’m excited to jam it.

In Standard, we do have a few Eldrazi ramp decks and this can grind a game out as well as any bigger Eldrazi can end it quickly. Card advantage, control elements and 2 damage a turn cycle is amazing. As an attacker it has pseudo-vigilance and its body is a good rate. Being non-mythic limits its financial upside unfortunately but if this hits bulk, I’m making a fat stack. I like this as a card that can improve the win rate of nearly any EDH deck that is struggling to draw cards and use in Standard could see its price move up, but I have to imagine this will be overpriced at a few bucks at preorder like every card in BFZ. No money to be made short term, but I’m socking these away and buying in bulk when they hit that rate, if they do.

DJ Johnson – I am going to love buying these for a dime each. This fits into practically any Commander deck that can jam Sol Ring/Temple of the False God. It’s definitely going to be a bulk rare, so don’t go buying infinite copies at $.50. I’ll buy them at $.10 and sell them for $.20, then the person who bought it is going to wipe the face of their playgroup, then I’m going to sell three more copies to help the arms race grow.

I really wish this was an artifact, so I could abuse Unwinding Clock and Clock of Omens with it in Glissa.  Other than the wall of text that Jason provided, there’s not much I can say.

12/17/15

Jason Alt – Just one today and it’s pretty weird.

goblindarkdwellers

Goblin Dark-Dwellers

Jason Alt- Snapcaster Mage is good, but why? Is it because he draws us a card and that card is the best card in our graveyard? Is it because he’s a 2-drop? Is it because he has flash? His tribal affiliation? The art? This card is very little of what Snapcaster Mage is. We have had attempts at Snapcater before, namely Dualcaster Mage which never really got there and Abbot of Keral Keep which really did. Which is this? Do we even want this? EDH players are likely going to stick to Mindclaw Shaman or Dualcaster Mage or not playing mono-Red because those choices both kind of suck. This could see play in Standard, however. If you’re using this to play a 3-mana spell, the 5 mana becomes the same as paying 2 mana to snap back a 3 mana spell and you get a 4/4 instead of a 2/1. Snapcaster gave you the element of surprise and snapped back Counterspells. This doesn’t do that, but what it does do is give you some inevitability. A second Crackling Doom could be back-breaking. Another Exquisite Firecraft, perhaps. Spikey players are very excited about this card and that is worth knowing about. I have no idea where this will begin to presell, but I see this going for around $12-$15 based on the hype and I think that’s too much. I imagine this won’t sneak in under the radar and go up when people discover its power, but rather the opposite, I fear.

DJ Johnson – This seems really good in Standard, not good in EDH.  SCG sold out at $1.99 on 12/19/15, so some people who are smarter than I am must like something about this card. You can find playsets on eBay for $15, and I still think that’s a fine “just in case” pickup price if you think you’ll play these in Standard during the first couple weeks of Standard. I wouldn’t buy in at $4-5 for speculation, so stay away if you’re not a grinder.

12/13/15

Jason Alt – We got quite a few spoilers today, and it started relatively innocently with a solitary spoiler, leaked on purpose by Wizards a day or so ago.

crushoftentacles

Crush of Tentacles

Jason Alt – This is much better for spoiling the Surge mechanic and ruining games of 2 Headed Giant (straight ruining them. You want to lose on turn 6? You’re going to lose on turn 6, probably) than it’s going to be for Standard. Some control players wonder if this is the card that could be the go-to control finisher from now on. I’m not as bullish as most. I do like the idea of jamming a 1-mana cantrip then taking your opponents to tentacle town but I worry that they’ll just recast all of those Siege Rhinos with the lands you let them keep. In EDH this is flavorful and also just a sort of disappointing, slow Cyclonic Rift that can’t save your bacon early. In Standard, Cyclonic Rift was better in multiples than this. I realize we should evaluate this on its own merits. I may not be the guy to discuss hardcore Standard theorycrafting. Here’s what reddit spikes think.

DJ Johnson – One of the upsides of the Surge mechanic is that it gives my fiancee’ and I something to do on Valentines’ Day instead of staying at home and doing nothing all day. Not that that’s a bad thing, but I think she’ll enjoy the pre-release more if we get to sit next to each other for the entire event, and actually play together. As for the card, buuuuuulk mythic. I’ll parrot Jason and say that its’ going to be a poor man’s Cyclonic Rift, which is already a pretty powerful budget card. I don’t want this in EDH, and the only guy that does is probably playing  Whelming Wave tribal. Make that guy’s day by selling this card to him for like $1-2, and then move on with your life.

Nissa, Voice of Zendikar

nissavoiceofzendikar

Nissa, Voice of Zendikar

Say, what happened last time we got an iffy planeswalker in an iffy set?

Untitled

Jason Alt – Oh, right. Even the dearth of exciting cards in Dragons of Tarkir couldn’t save Narset. Do you think Nissa is better than Narset? How many dollars better? Also, expeditions will ensure this set sells better than that one. So the real factor here is whether we will see other mythics in the set that could soak up some of the value that Narset could not. Also, we could get a ton of elves or allies or creatures you want to build around this walker. I don’t think it’s powerful enough in a vacuum and will really need to pal around with some creatures to make any of its abilities worth using. That said, being able to draw like 6 cards and gain 6 life on turn 6 could make this a must-kill Planeswalker. Should we evaluate ‘walkers in terms of their ultimate? Well, no. But Nissa isn’t giving us much else to work with.

DJ Johnson – I guess being the “voice” of Zendikar means that she’ll just yell at you and pretend to be threatening by making 0/1s. Gideon is the  “Ally” of Zendikar, so he’s actually gonna get up and beat some colorless clowns to the ground. Nissa will pretend to do things that are relevant. Planeswalkers at pre-order prices are historically bad, and I’m going to repeat that for new Nissa. At least with her Origins form you got a body that could fight, and an ETB effect to abuse.

Chandra, Flamecaller

chandraflamecaller

Chandra, Flamecaller

Jason Alt – Yuck. I like how aggro this card is. 6 damage worth of elemental tokens the turn you summon her means she is here to kick ass and chew bubblegum and ran out of bubblegum. But like some bubblegum chewers, she can’t chew gum and do something else at the same time, namely defend herself. Like, at all. And red isn’t really the color of defending your planeswalkers, either. Sure, she brings herself to 5 loyalty right away, which is formidable and her other abilities are pretty sweet. Worst case scenario, you can Firespout the turn you play her and hope nothing lives to finish her off. But 6 mana is so many mana. So which 6 mana planeswalker is she most like?

Untitled

Is Chandra like this 6-drop?

Untitled

Or this one? Chandra Ablaze made next to no impact on Standard and had to rely on inclusion in a weird Modern deck and the casual appeal of the card to drive its price up past its prime. I see new Chandra as more like Chandra Ablaze and I’m worried it may have to soak up more value than demand can sustain. I think it’s almost certain to be a $30+ preorder and I’m staying away at that price.

As an alternate point of view, Patrick Chapin likes this card and he had been historically pretty good at identifying good planeswalkers. What really needs to be seen is whether this goes in more than just one deck.

DJ Johnson- Stop telling me that this card is like Ball Lightning. Ball Lightning had trample, costed half as much, and killed people quickly. People are going to preorder this at something dumb like $25, and then tell you that its’ the next Sun’s Champion. Just smile and nod, and offer to sell them your copies at whatever they’re at when you crack them at the prerelease. There are so many damn Chandras now, I don’t think this one fights its’ way to the top. Six mana is so much mana….

World Breaker

worldbreaker

World Breaker

Jason Alt – This name is way cooler than the card and it’s a pretty cool card.  Standard ramp decks can easily cast this on turn 4 or 5 but to what end? Blowing up a land of theirs could set them back a turn but there are way juicier targets for its ability in EDH. This is an obvious EDH card but Standard is going to determine what its price does initially and I’m not sure this is good enough. A Giant-er Spider that blows up a land or maybe some equipment – what say you? Could its recursio be the factor that gets people to play it in Standard where it will shrug off wraths? I need to see a price before I say whether its price is wrong, but this feels vaguely familiar to me.

Untitled

Oh, right. That’s where I remember it from. From being just like a card that underwhelmed everyone. Is World Breaker a better and more useful card? Yep. Will it be worth enough money that I will be glad I bought at $5 rather than glad I sold at $5? I don’t think so, personally.

DJ Johnson- Jason beat me to the punch on all of these unofficial spoilers, but that doesn’t mean I can’t second his motions and agree with everything he’s said so far, while adding my own unique and witty banter to the commentary. If this sees play in Standard, I think it’s as a 2-of in the sideboard of the Eldrazi Ramp deck, as a problem solver for control decks that you can recur repeatedly. That does not justify a $5 preorder price, so ship them when you pull them, and sell them as bulk mythics later on.

Kozilek’s Return

kozileksreturn

Kozilek’s Return

I like this spell quite a bit. While it would like be too good if it dealt 3 damage, the 2 damage feels a little weak. Not to worry, playing this in a Green-Red Eldrazi Ramp deck will clear the board of Rhinos and Griffins and other nasties that you can’t get with Languish. Nail their dorks early and get their second wave later with a well timed Eldrazi? Don’t mind if I do. What this card gains in having more range than Languish it more than makes up for in being super narrow compared to languish. Languish can only go in black decks, sure, but at least that black deck doesn’t have to play 7 mana spells if it doesn’t want to. I fear how narrow this card is will overshadow how good it is. Good cards with no decks to play them in are more familiarly known as bad cards. I  hope this sticks because it’s fun and powerful, but I don’t know if it can reasonably break the $5 mark long-term unless Eldrazi decks start to get there.

DJ Johnson – You can play this in one deck. Maybe two decks, if you count two different formats. Even then, I think there are better early game board wipes in Modern, so I don’t expect this to replace the original Pyroclasm or Firespout that

Sphinx of the Final Word

sphinxofthefinalword

Sphinx of the Final Word

“Crackling Doom? Are you serious? Yeah, it’s dead. Crap.”

“I’ll block one of your goblins with Sphinx of the Final Word and the other 7 hit me for…lethal. Crap.”

“Your Dragonlord Ojutai may have hit me twice already, but now I have something that will trade with it! Oh, wrath? Crap.”

These are a few things I expect people who try to play this in Standard to say. I think it’s pretty good. I also think it doesn’t do what you need control finishers to do. Dragonlord Ojutai is the go-to card in that slot and it also has Hexproof, is 2 mana cheaper and draws cards. This is good at saying no, but it also says that when you ask it if it feels comfortable carrying your control deck over the finish line. This feels like a mythic, but not in a good way. This is mythic like Godsire is Mythic. This is mythic like Nercopolis Regent is mythic. I realize that comparison breaks down a bit because casual players played with those cards eventually. Could EDH use this some day? Mehbe, but emphasis on meh.

DJ Johnson- I’m so glad that they printed another seven mana sphinx that does basically nothing. I was getting worried that the first 36 Sphinx’s weren’t enough to convince us of the fact that this guy surely has a spot in competitive play. Other than Consecrated Sphinx, which is arguably ban worthy in Commander, no other sphinx has ever made an impact on anything in constructed, ever. This is a one dollar Magic card, if that.

Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet

kalitastraitorofghet

mother of god

Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet

Jason Alt – This card is pretty strong. It can even feed itself the tokens it creates to get huge and get out of burn range. This is going to stiff-arm red decks pretty convincingly, gaining you life to put you out of burn range and buffing itself so it can’t be burned out. This card is very exciting and I imagine it’s going to have to soak up a lot of value in the set.

Untitled

I expect Kalitas to be $25 at some point. Will he do as poor a job of maintaining it as the last card I was excited about? Maybe. Also, this card got the song “Hotel California” stuck in my head, so thanks for that. Traitor.

DJ Johnson – Now this is a card with some legs. We have three very relevant abilities, but now we need a deck for it. It single-handedly shuts down mono red and other hyper-aggressive strategies, but it has to actually fit into some shell. Is it the bombshell $25 mythic of the set? I have no idea, I don’t play Standard. I’d still advocate selling these at pre-release though, playing it safe is always my preferred strategy.

Blighted Crossroads(?)

devoidland

T: Add ◊ to your mana pool. (◊ represents colorless mana.)

T, Pay 1 life: Add one mana of any color to your mana pool. Spend this mana only to cast spells with devoid.

Jason Alt – Anyone excited about a worse, narrow Mana Confluence? At least this taps for colorless so you can cast Kozilek. Why didn’t they just reprint Mana Confluence?

manaconfluence

@#$%!

DJ Johnson – Stop trying to make mono-devoid a thing. It’s not going to be a thing. I personally wish the wording on this said: “Add one mana of any color to your mana pool. Spend this mana only to cast colorless spells, or activate abilities of colorless permanents.” Then it would be useful for activating abilities of lands, artifacts, and other crazy stuff. It would be useful in general, really. Not like it is now. Buuuuulk rare.

Spire’s Needle(?)

spiresneedle

Spire’s Needle enters the battlefield tapped.

T: Add R or W to your mana pool.

2RW: Spire’s Needle becomes a 2/1 Elemental creature with double strike until end of turn. It’s still a land.

Jason Alt – Now this, I can get down with. The 1 toughness sucks and by turn 5, they’re likely to have a 3 toughness dude this will end up trading with, but any buffs to this and it’s insane. What’s that? You can target manlands with Awaken to put counters on them? Well, that’s dandy. That’s all kinds of dandy. Shambling Vent is $5 and I think probably a better card. Buy accordingly.

DJ Johnson – This is pretty sweet design (and by that, I just mean I’m glad they didn’t wuss out and make it a 4/1 with first strike or something), and I definitely want one in my Child of Alara deck because its’ silly with Kessig Wolf Run. That being said, I don’t think its’ as strong as Shambling Vents. I think it stays at $2-3 as the first weeks of the set go by, and I would definitely move the copies you get at the pre-release. I am glad that this gives RW decks a way to come back from Wraths though.

Holdout Settlement

holdoutsettlement

Holdout Settlement

I remember making a bet with a guy on Reddit that Pain Seer would never hit $10 after it came down from its initial presale price (one guy in the QS forums said he was going to sell his Dark Confidants because Pain Seer was just better and that kind of “Post before you read the card a second time” hysteria may be why Pain Seer sold out at $12 on SCG) and if it did, I’d eat a playset of foils. I never ate that playset of foils. Could this land have made Pain Seer hit $10? No. But it’s making me want a foil copy for my King Macar the Gold-Cursed EDH deck which is a real, actual deck I have and if Koskun Falls becomes the second card worth having in Homelands, it’s Holdout Settlement’s fault for making Inspired cards next-level.

Unknown Shores

unknownshores

Unknown Shores

They sure are printing the same land a lot of times.

Crumbling Vestige

crumblingvestige

Crumbling Vestige

This is the best subtle twist on the same card they keep reprinting over and over. There sure are a lot of lands that tap for colorless mana in this set. I bet we get a lot more “diamonds” in casting costs, right? Why else all the doofy lands at common? This set almost gives us enough to build the mana base for a Karn EDH deck without Wastes.

Sea Gate Ruins(?)

seagateruins

Land
T: Add ◊ to your mana pool. (◊ represents colorless mana.)

2◊, T: Draw a card. Activate this ability only if you have no cards in hand.

Jason Alt – Oh, good god. This card is amazing. And it’s non-mythic? Imagine what this would go for at mythic. This may be the card I’m most excited about in this set and I wrote a love haiku to Mirrorpool and serenaded it outside its window. This card even looks sexy in foil. While this is powerful it’s also a little bit awkward. Is this the next Library of Alexandria (Lol, no)? Is it the next Mikokoro? Maybe. Is it the next Blood Scrivener? Also maybe. Outside of Standard, this suffers from the same “awkward to activate” problem as Mirrorpool but EDH players playing Hellbent can find a way. Burn decks need this card. Luckily it’s non-Legendary, so go to town.

DJ Johnson – The fact that this is non-legendary means that playing it as a 4-of is fine, especially since you can use one to pay the colorless cost for the other The Atarka Red decks of today are pretty strict on the RG mana though, so I’m not sure if this fits in burn just yet on release. The ability is very powerful in EDH though, and you don’t have to sacrifice it like most other ability-lands nowadays. Even though Jason is drooling above me, I’d rather play it safe and sell these on release. Hold off for now, I don’t think it’s a $5 rare. You can probably pick these up for a dollar or two around Game Day.

Tranquil Immensity(?)

gwtapland

Jason Alt – “Blossoming Sands is OP. Nerf it by taking away the life gain and make it uncommon so it doesn’t ruin the Limited format” – Someone at WotC, I guess.

DJ Johnson – “You know what players will want? They want to open up a basic land in the basic land slot, and THEN they want to open up a Wastes at common, and a Tranquil Immensity at uncommon. Players love lands, right?” – Someone who should hopefully be fired.

Initial Spoilers

The first few cards spoiled came so early their authenticity was questioned but pretty quickly people latched on and subsequent spoiler releases all but confirmed them.

Kozilek, the Great Distortion

kozilekthegreatdistortion

Kozilek, the Great Distortion

Jason Alt – This didn’t look real at first to most of us because we were concerned the weird diamond symbol was some weird kind of 6th mana. Now we know it’s colorless mana that has to originate from a colorless source and it’s different from generic mana that can be colored mana used as colorless. Pretty simple and elegant, frankly. We can get into the elegance when we discuss Wastes, aka Barry’s Land. What do we expect from Kozilek?

Untitled

I think this won’t be too far off, frankly. Kozilek is a little worse imo but so is the set it’s in which means Standard players might regard the set as “Oath of the Dragon’s Maze of Tarkirwatch of Kamigawa.” If they do, the price of good mythics is going to be out of control, like we’re seeing with cards like Dragonlord Ojutai and a few other cards in an otherwise pretty lackluster set. Could the casual gold buoy the price of Newzilek (Newlamog rolls off the tongue better, I know) or will it be around $15 in a few months? I’m inclined to say either way, it’s going to be too expensive at preorder and you will want to stay away. Bust these and sell them if they’re around $20-$25 early. Kozilek is cool but he’s no Ulamog.

DJ Johnson – Meh. I’m not all too impressed, and I definitely like Ulamog better in Standard (but that’s not saying much). Menace seems really awkward to tack on instead of trample (you’re telling me two squirrels can jump in front of that thing to take the hit, and you walk away fine?) I agree with Jason that he’ll tank out of the gate until hitting $10 or so, then you’re free to pick him up from there if you need him for your crazy shenanigans wingdings mana deck.

Wastes

wastes

Wastes

Jason Alt – This is pretty cool. Also, foils are confirmed and it looks like this is in a common slot rather than a basic land slot. Do I see a potential corollary?

Untitled

I actually see foil Snow-covered Island as a corollary for the minimum price, rather than the maximum. I may hear some dissent on this, but these are EDH-legal, standard-impacting, basic tutorable, full-art Barry’s Lands. I like the foils a lot and future printings of Wastes, if they happen, are very unlikely to be full-art. Snatch these foils.

DJ Johnson – While Jason goes crazy over the foil full arts, I’d like to remind everyone to keep the nonfoils as well. These aren’t draft chaff, these are Shadowborn Apostle-level commons where one guy at the shop needs like 40 for his deck, and it ends up being $1 retail and $.25 buylist. Don’t forget about the nonfoils.

Ayli, Eternal Pilgrim

aylieternalpilgrim

Ayli, Eternal Pilgrim

Jason Alt – Be still my beating heart. A legendary black-white cleric Commander. This card has an aggressive power and toughness to casting cost ratio and deathtouch is solid and its ability to exile stuff makes it brutal on a stick, but I don’t know how good this will be in Standard. What I do know is that this is EDH gold and while that doesn’t do much for prices, this is likely to drive the demand up for a bunch of old, black and white clerics and that’s worth paying attention to. I’ll write about this in more depth soon.

DJ Johnsons- Meh. I’m not an Orzhov guy in Commander, but I do respect this guys’ power level. I’m pretty sure he’ll be a bulk rare, but foils will be relevant unless they get Intro Packed. Read Jason’s article about this.

Mina and Denn, Wildborn (?)

minaanddennwildborn

Mina and Denn, Wildborn

2RG
Legendary Creature – Elf Ally
You may play an additional land during each of your turns.

RG, Return a land you control to its owner’s hand: Target creature gains trample until end of turn.
4/4

Jason Alt – Well, this is certainly a card. I really like being able to play extra lands, and the rate certainly can’t be beaten. a 4/4 for 4 with upside is certainly very appealing. Being able to trample your way out of ground stalls and enable 2 landfall triggers a turn is nice upside, too. I think this is a fun build-around commander for EDH and will probably not be worth anything or drive the prices of many other cards up. So that’s a lame thing to have to say about a card I like, but that’s my job. I still like Smothering Abomination as much as I ever did but if you remember I called that a “don’t buy yet” and I feel similarly here.

DJ Johnson – I actually care about this more than most people, because (you guessed it) of Child of Alara! More Exploration effects are always welcome in that deck, although I’m not sure what I’ll be replacing just yet. Giving things trample in that deck isn’t super relevant because I already have Wolf Run and Child itself, but… oh, wait. Finance stuff. Right. Buuuuuuulk rare. Now, let’s talk more about why I need a foil copy for Child…..

Mirrorpool

mirrorpool

Mirrorpool

Jason Alt – I don’t know whether this will impact Standard. That’s not for me to decide. What I will say is that if this ever craters, pay attention because this is the EDH-iest land ever printed. This does everything you want a land to do in that format and you can bring it back with Crucible of Worlds and do that thing again.  Copying an Eldrazi seems busted if it’s non-Legendary and this taps for colorless which helps you play Kozilek. I don’t know whether this is good in Standard and I know this is going to be awkward to activate if you don’t have your trusty Sol Ring but I don’t care. This land is stupid. I love it.

DJ Johnson – The first time I read this, I skimmed over both of the “you control” clauses, so now I’m not nearly as excited about this card. It’s still pretty good in Commander, but not “auto include in every deck oh my god it’s the best thing ever”.

 

Expeditions

DJ Johnson – Well, I’m sure that we were all blown away by the reveal of this round of Expeditions. Instead of getting clean cycles of 5-5-10 like everyone expected, we got 10-1-1-1….. you get the idea. Wizards really wanted to push a lot of colorless mana sources into the expedition slot, partially to promote the new symbol to represent colorless mana instead of generic. Before jumping into the next 20 pretty lands that were shown before they were supposed to, let’s look at the current Expeditions as a baseline to compare to:

expediotns

Without further rambling, let’s go over this seasons’ lottery tickets!

twilightmire

Filterlands:

DJ Johnson – Pretty much everyone expected these, so there’s not a huge surprise. While nothing in the set will top the almighty Wasteland, these will still be the ones that people complain slightly less about when they crack them during drafts and free booster packs that their SO got them for Valentine’s day. If the general rule of the higher end Expeditions is “Around $200”, then I think that’s where the higher end filters like Twilight Mire will end up.

dustbowl

DJ Johnson – Man, I love this card. I’m seriously considering going all-in on Expeditions with my Child of Alara, although I know that if I do, I’ll be forced to actually play Magic a little bit more to showcase the deck. Dust Bowl is sweet. This art is sweet. Combos with Life from the Loam and Exploration are sweet so you can keep a check on all of the ridiculous ramp out there that’s not your own.

eyeofugin

DJ Johnson – This is one of the only Expeditions where I don’t like the art. Maybe its’ just the bad picture angle, but it doesn’t seem like we have any detail as to what’s going on; just a few pointy hedrons in the background converging on a bright glow. I think the Hedron border looks the best on this one out of all of the Expeditions though, just because of how relevant it is with the name and art. $50ish seems fair.

forbiddenorchard

DJ Johnson – Honestly, I didn’t expect this one at all. I don’t think anyone did. Are they going to put Spirit tokens in the Oath packs for one single Expedition out of 20, let alone it probably being the only card in the set that makes colorless non-flying spirit tokens? I’m not sure.

horizoncanopy

In the recent MTGprice writers podcast, we talked about how it would be awkward for them to put Grove of the Burnwillows in as an Expedition, because it wasn’t part of a complete symmetrical cycle. Well, they proved us wrong in two ways. While Horizon Canopy is still ridiculously expensive, any copies added to the market are sure to be welcomed by Modern players who are looking to play Boggles.

korhaven

DJ Johnson – In hindsight, the name of this card makes it really, really obvious as an Expedition choice. I really like the art here, with all the clouds and sun and sky and airboat thing. I also had no idea this card was Legendary until right now, so you learn something new every day. The demand for some of these Expeditions may be significantly lower than the previous round, simply because you never see Kor Haven, Strip Mine, or Dust Bowl as more than 1-ofs because they only see play in Commander and other 1-of formats.

manaconfluence

DJ Johnson – I hate to be the guy that complains about an Expedition choice, but really? Why this? Why now? At least the art is cool, so that’s a redeeming factor. I think this will hover in along with the rest of the low-end expeditions, so $45-50.

stripmine

DJ Johnson – Is this supposed to be a shoutout to Commander players as well as Vintage? I have a pretty strong disdain for any deck that’s playing Strip Mine in the 99. FTV Mines are around $25 right now, and I would peg this to hover at the $60-70 range a few weeks after release. They really nailed it with all of the art for each of these.

tectonicedge

DJ Johnson – Uhhh……. why? I mean, I guess they have a whole “destroy Zendikar” theme going on here with all the land destruction Expeditions, but still. I guess they wanted Tec Edge to support Modern, Strip Mine for Vintage, and Wasteland for Legacy? If we consider that the cheapest Expedition right now can be found for under $40 on TCGplayer (Smoldering Marsh), then I think we can expect Tec Edge to settle down at around $45-50. It’s going to see more Modern play, and people will be more willing to jump onto the Expedition without fear of rotation.

wasteland

DJ Johnson – And here we arrive at the grand finale. I honestly didn’t expect this to be in the set; part of that was because I didn’t think that they would print one Expedition that was head and shoulders more valuable and desired than the rest, and part of me is concerned for some 9 year old kid who might pull this and confuse it with a regular “Waste land”, then trade it away for the ultimate rip-off. Maybe that’s a non-issue because of the different text and all, but it’s just something to think about. Still, expect these to compete with the Judge foils, because you can’t pull anything better than this. $250 easy, I might even be calling it a bit low.

Please follow and like us: