Pro Trader: Data Will Be Lata

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We are currently in the very awkward period of time between the first few Baldur’s Gate cards being spoiled and having enough deck data to start to connect some dots, so I thought I’d share some of my thoughts about how these decks might likely be built in order to see if there is anything we can identify early. That’s not my favorite way to spec but we sometimes have a one week break between a set being released and the next set being spoiled and it’s fun to take advantage of that brief window in between releases so I don’t have time to focus on how the relentless pace of set releases coupled with my employing myself by making content about those releases on four different platforms is beginning to feel like a prison.

The good news, though, is that I am getting pretty decent at this. The bad news is that other people are, too, and anything that’s obvious is going to pop before I have a chance to tell you about it. It’s way too late to make money on these cards now, but if you had bought them years ago when I said to, you’d have them to sell to people paying outrageous prices for them, so I don’t feel that bad. There is plenty of money left to be made, but let’s examine the money we can’t make anymore unless we find a mispriced copy somewhere.

Raggadragga is an obvious pairing for a bunch of mana dorks, but people figured out right away that granting creatures a mana ability is a very easy way to upgrade them with Raggitydraggity and they responded by way overpaying for Citanul Hierophants, a card I have never stopped telling people they should play but no one listens to me because I said it in an article and not a YouTube video.

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ProTrader: Magic doesn’t have to be expensive.

Neon Cycles

With Streets of New Capenna having been out for nearly a month now, and previews for Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate well underway, I want to take a look back at Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty. A lot of cards from that set have found homes in a lot of different EDH decks, and I’ve actually been surprised at the adoption rate or some of the cards I wouldn’t have thought to be that popular. Let’s see if you feel the same way…


Sokenzan, Crucible of Defiance (Borderless Foil)

Price today: $10
Possible price: $25

I’m pretty sure I’ve written about Boseiju, Otawara and Takenuma before now, but the red cards in these cycles do seem to often get neglected. They may be less exciting and flashy, and so the adoption rate and price drags a little, but I think that just makes them a better opportunity for us. Sokenzan isn’t as powerful as some of the other lands in the set, but it can still easily replace a Mountain in your mono-red (or even multi-colour deck) for very little deck-building cost, giving you that extra little boost of creatures to use however you see fit.

Taking a look at EDHREC numbers, Boseiju takes the crown at over 31k decks, followed by Otawara, Takenuma, Eiganjo and then Sokenzan bringing up the rear. What’s quite interesting is that Otawara is in around 25k decks, but Borderless foils will run you over $40 – four times that of Sokenzan, but in just double the number of decks. Admittedly, Otawara sees more play in Modern, but I think this still indicates that Sokenzan is underpriced right now.

I think that the Borderless foils are the most exciting version of this not-very-exciting card, and can currently be had for around $10 on TGCPlayer. FEAs are running a lot lower around $4, with worse art and a higher supply. There are around 40 listings of Borderless foils right now, almost all single copies and still selling at least a couple a day, so those copies won’t last much longer with little more supply due to fill in the gaps.

Junji, the Midnight Sky (Borderless Foil)

Price today: $28
Possible price: $50

Another Borderless foil for you: Junji, the Midnight Sky. Again we’re not looking at the most popular of the dragons from this cycle here, but this time the second best – or at least, the second most played right now. I do actually think that it’s the best of the cycle; the red one – Atsushi, the Blazing Sky – is very strong too but I think that Junji has more flexibility and can slot into a wider variety of decks whilst still being able to make a big impact on any boardstate.

The drain effect on Junji might not quite stack up to the level of a Kokusho, the Evening Star, but forcing each of your opponents to discard two cards is very strong – especially if you start reanimating and re-sacrificing this dragon (which you definitely should be doing). Also having the option to reanimate a different creature when this one hits the graveyard gives the card another axis of attack, all the while having Flying and Menace to put the pain to your enemies and force them to deal with it – giving you another death trigger, which is exactly what you want.

Borderless foils of Junji are expensive for a standard set card that doesn’t really see play outside of EDH – but the price hasn’t been any cheaper than this and I don’t think it’s likely to get much cheaper than this any time soon. Supply on TCGPlayer is around 25 listings, and I don’t think it will be long at all before this is a $40 card. $50 won’t be too far off after that and as a Borderless foil Mythic the sky could really be the limit here.


David Sharman (@accidentprune on Twitter) has been playing Magic since 2013, dabbling in almost all formats but with a main focus on Modern, Pioneer and EDH. Based in the UK, he’s an active MTG finance speculator specialising in cross-border arbitrage.

The New Queen of Mean

Honestly, there were a lot of puns I could go with in the article title, but Tasha, the Witch Queen is an amazing card. I saw this in the preview stream and immediately took to Scryfall, trying to find the most busted things to do with her.

Frankly, this is a mechanic with a lot of flavors. Some versions play out of the graveyard. Some play off the top of their deck. Some intercept a spell (Spelljack!) and let you play it. Tasha loves all of them equally and that’s why she gives you a 3/3 demon every time you do it. 

So let’s get into some early picks for this Queen, and beat the rush when people wake up.

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Cliff (@WordOfCommander) has been writing for MTGPrice since 2013, and is an eager Commander player, Draft enthusiast, and Cube fanatic. A high school science teacher by day, he’s also the official substitute teacher of the MTG Fast Finance podcast. If you’re ever at a GP and you see a giant flashing ‘CUBE DRAFT’ sign, go over, say hi, and be ready to draft.

Unlocked Pro Trader: Mopping Up

Readers!

We covered a lot of what is going to matter from New Capenna and New Capenna EDH decks which is great because previews started today for another product already so I guess we’re done with New Capenna.

We hardly knew ya, but you live by the streets, you die by the streets. Filling the void in our lives created by New Capenna being printed, thus depriving us of the cavalcade of spoilers that have been giving our lives meaning. For what is content creation without an incessant stream of new products, and the announcement of Secret Lairs which will charge your credit card $3,000 like 6 months after you forget you ordered them?

Before we close the book on New Capenna, let’s take one final look at how the Commanders are doing in terms of popularity. Now that the set is a week old, I think it’s finally fair to put them in the “Tops decks of the last week” category rather than sorting by set. That’s right, New Capenna is all grown up and ready to join the full data set and be judged against it. I feel like a proud papa here. Like a proud papa, I took pics.

Raffine and Jetmir not being able to beat Prosper makes sense – Prosper is the face card in an EDH precon and it’s also a super boring and obvious deck. I rail against boring and obvious because that kind of stuff offends my tastes as a deckbuilder and I need to constantly remind myself that I rely upon boring stuff to actually make money at MTG Finance. It’s not gambling if you remember your fundamentals, so let’s pick some boring cards and get out of here, I guess. Boring doesn’t have to be bad.

Archmage is popping? Let’s make sure.

This is how long these things take, now. Emertitus has a lot of versions, the bordless version of which is the best, but the multiple versions and sheer volume of product being poured down the throats of the community and the new perverse incentive to gamble at $1,000 a hand instead of $100 like in the past in the form of collector booster boxes has created such a glut of good, new, non-mythic rares that it takes some real doing to get a card to move. This is on its way, and while you might not break off any $2 borderless copies, we now know approximately how long this takes now. If it’s information that helps us in the future remains to be seen.

I don’t have much to say here, but this seems like an $8 card gettable around $2 some places until all of the $2 copies are gone which could be soon. This is a messed up card, but 8 mana is becoming increasingly trivial in EDH these days.

Cards are getting lost in the shuffle at a pretty rapid rate here and I think things are getting missed. Like this, at $1, is just a better version of this

which took 2 reprints to knock below $5. I don’t think Rampy boy necessary hits $7, but it’s not in the regular set and it’s not a card anyone is talking about which means you can snapple cheap copies while people don’t care about it because there are literally too many cards to even read these days.

Hear me out – this $12 card is way too cheap right now. I know $12 looks like a lot but it’s actually not enough. This is a $20 card and I don’t see how they reprint it.

Midnight Vow and Crimson Hunt were out for 15 minutes, no one drafted them because of Covid, they released an overpriced premium Black and White product that EVERYONE hated and now there are a bunch of standard rares that probably go to $10. Adeline is a profoundly unfair Magic card and everyone missed it because by the time the set was spoiled, they started spoiling another one. Besides, everyone is so unfamiliar with those sets that you didn’t even noticed I switched the names Midnight Hunt and Crimson Vow around earlier in this paragraph. It would have been great to get these at $2 but I literally still thought this was like $5 because I haven’t checked on this set in over a month.

Commander Legends spoilers started today so I guess it’s back to the content mine to mine more content until I die of content lung when I’m 40. It’s not much, but it’s honest work and doesn’t take a physical toll on me, so there’s that. If you ever get bogged down by the sheer volume if it all, just remember that no one else can pay attention, either. You pick a card you feel good about, you buy low, and you sell high when no one even thinks about the set 2 weeks after it’s released. You don’t have to read every card, you only to read 1 if it’s the right card. Maybe next week we’ll talk about knowing which card is the right card. Until next time!

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