Emergence

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Some cards are late bloomers and that’s fine. With Modern Masters spoilers about to start I am still trying to glean anything I can from Commander 2016. I know, right? SO last year. Still, there’s gold in them thar hills and while all of the big, obvious nuggets have been dug out by the prospectors, there’s still a lot of dust to be panned out of the river. If that sounds too time consuming, don’t worry, because in the midst of panning, I noticed a trend that is akin to finding… like a map? To a new gold mine no one noticed? No, that’s not quite right. Maybe I was panning and discovered a new vein? Look, people weren’t playing Tymna the Weaver as much before but they are playing it a lot now and somehow that fits into the whole gold rush metaphor I was making before. There’s an apt comparison in there somewhere but I’ll be damned if I’m going prospecting for it. I’d rather talk about all the money we’re about to make.

Blink and you’ll miss the amount Tymna was built this month. Occupying the last spot of decks built this month, and only because of one strong week, Tymna wasn’t even on the list a few weeks ago. This means all of the hype is recent, many weeks after the precon containing Tymna came out.

While Tymna was buried underneath old commanders like Animar and Brago for monthly totals, Tymna is right up there with the new commanders for the week in sixth place (Breya and Atraxa aren’t pictured but the go without saying) and Tymna is starting to get built as much as the very popular Yidris. What does Tymna have to offer that can compare to sexy, new decks like Vial Smasher and Yidris? How did Tymna manage to eclipse Kydele this week? It’s true that EDHREC skews casual a bit, but it’s been a very good model and we’ve made a lot of money using it to predict things.

Late surges like this are usually predicated on some sort of event, but Aether Revolt doesn’t hold many clues. The new cards section for Tymna brings up more questions than it answers but it does have a few breadcrumbs to follow, which is better than nothing.

One of them isn’t in Tymna’s color identity which means a lot of the new decks are being built with either Iqra Shiddiqi or Reyhan or Kydele or Thraisos as the partner, otherwise a green card wouldn’t show up, although it’s only in 15% of the decks (1 in 7) so it’s not clear that there is much of a consensus here. Felidar Guardian doesn’t really seem to synergize with Tymna all that well. If you’re up to it, using advanced filters you can see which decks are running these two cards (Tymna and Guardian) and see what other cards they run to see how, if at all, they synergize (it likely has something to do with the commander partnered with Tymna) but only 1 in 8 new Tymna decks are jamming Guardian. Both of these cards seem to be trying to squeeze value out of cards like Eternal Witness and both seem to play nice with Ravos.

I ran the report, which you can view hereĀ and got a lot of blue cards but also some combo cards like Boomweaver Giant, Pattern of Rebirth and Saffi. This lets me know that since a large percentage of the decks running Tymna and Guardian are built very differently than the typical decks you get when you search for just Tymna, you might feel forced to conclude the surge is predicated on a new way to build the deck. However, realistically, even though Boomweaver and Saffi and Pattern have a 60% adoption rate, we’re basically talking about 5 decks and 3 people building a certain way just isn’t enough data to establish a trend. I’ll keep an eye out for this new way to build Tymna (or people wedging Tymna in Karador, which is kind of what this looks like) but for now, let’s look at the real nuts and bolts cards that have a high correlation with Tymna as a commander.

One brief post script before we close this chapter – the report I generated for Tymna plus Renegade Rallier is available at this link and also looks like Karador fare. If you’ve never used the advanced filters, all I did was click “Advanced filters” and type in the name of the card I wanted cross-referenced with Tymna (I did this from Tymna’s page – that is important to note).

This has gone up a buck since I last mentioned it and what’s more, the buy price is starting to move. This managed to avoid being flashy enough back in the day to end up on the Reserved List but it’s still an old card that has a very unique and powerful effect and is part of a few combos. If this card suddenly went to $10, no one would be all that surprised. I think with a push, this could be a $10 card and you’ll end up glad you had a bunch. I think you try and get these out of binders and if anyone will sell them to you for the buylist price of $3.50ish, you jump at it. This is a staple in Saffi and Karador decks and as we mentioned above these decks, Saffi especially, just got Renegade Rallier. I think this card is going to get a lot more attention soon.

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History shows that there was a good time to pick this up and if we didn’t, we’re overpaying, now. I feel like I’ve talked about this card before and probably will again. This is a creature that can be a sac outlet, tutor, body and even your commander all in one card. That’s potent. You’re overpaying a little for a Diabolic Tutor but being able to repeatably cast it from the command zone more than offsets that if you want this as your commander. This is also easier to loop than most tutors since it’s a creature. I like this less than I like it under 2 bucks but if you didn’t buy a ton, get on board now. With a sub-4x multiplier, I don’t hate foils, either. I packed one at the prerelease and couldn’t bring myself to sell it. What have I become? I play Magic with Magic cards. I know, I’m doing it wrong. Let’s move on.

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This rotated out of Standard in September 2016 and didn’t really tank like I thought it might. It’s climbed since then meaning we really missed the boat on this card. Standard never really took advantage of this meaning EDH was free to dictate its price, and in a world where Venser’s Journal was surprisingly expensive, it’s no surprise that this card that does a bunch of EDH stuff is going up. I don’t think this is ever coming down, the name on it (Alhammarret) means this doesn’t get printed in a regular set but is relegated to supplementary product. Low reprint risk, high upside and a powerful effect is a nice cocktail. This card has only just begun to climb and now’s as good a time as any to buy in.

Hear me out.

This is in what could be a dead cat bounce or it could be people realizing that a card banned in Modern is not very likely to get reprinted and we could be at peak supply. A card with this many useful modes, a relevant trial affiliation (2 of them) play in Legacy and with EDH applicability shouldn’t be $3. There is a very small spread on this card meaning dealers aren’t as wary as you might think. Oh, and if this gets unbanned in Modern (it won’t, ever, but if it does) you’ll look like a genius. This is paired with Tymna a lot by virtue of people seeming to pair it a lot with green (I think Ikra Shidiqi is a good pair since it helps you gain even more life) but I also think Kydele is a decent pairing with a card that draws you three cards, though you have a very small window to use the mana. (The Kydele and Tymna report isn’t all that exciting, it turns out.)

Shaman is basically just a good card that is going to go up in price barring a lot of things that seem unlikely and which goes up a LOT if something equally unlikely happens. I like those odds, frankly. The scenario where you win huge is equal to the scenario where you lose a little and you’re almost guaranteed to gain a bit. Plus, it’s always good to have these in binders. The Eternal Masters printing hurt and seems really odd in retrospect but this card should recover. It’s Deathrite Shaman.

So this has been lowkey creeping up in price since it was released. It’s in the Saskia deck which has a lot of big, durdle cards that likely don’t recover in price from their reprinting, forcing this to soak up some of the value of the deck. It isn’t an ideal time to buy in, now, but this is very good in a deck where you draw cards based on your ability to deal them combat damage, meaning you have to serve with stuff. I like cards like Ohran Viper with this, making them just let you hit them and letting you draw lots of cards. A few of these cards we seem to have missed the best buying opportunity on, but it’s better to buy late than never and recognizing trends is a lot of what we do.

This seems to be recovering from its latest (though unfortunately, probably not its last) reprinting. You gain some life with Tymna decks, so why not ping them with life loss since you’re gong to lose life paying it to draw cards? Why not weaponize your lifelink? Why not run both halves of this stupid “I’m so smrt at Majic” combo?

Whatever you decide to do, it’s important to check the same things regularly. I checked the price of Stonehoof Chieftain early but not often. That resulted in me having to pay more, now. If I hadn’t checked the trends on most played commanders often, we might have missed Tymna coming into the spotlight and slept on a bunch of decent opportunities. Check and recheck everything you can think of. It’s sometimes tough to stay on top of these trends, especially with some algorithms that can check for you. The problem is I feel like they don’t warn you until it’s too late and there is no substitute for doing a little legwork yourself.

While you’re at it, play around with the advanced filters on EDHREC a little bit. You can get a lot of information about how certain builds are constructed, and even if those specific builds are only 20% of Tymna decks, a card played in all of them is in 20% of Tymna decks but is also in 100% of the decks that the people who build that way care about. Any interest on an older card like Pattern of Rebirth gives it the nudge it needs to get going for real.

That does it for me next week. I’m sure we’ll have some Modern Masters 2017 cards to discuss in the mean time, so stay tuned. Until next time!

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2 thoughts on “Emergence”

  1. I think Tymna pairs best with Sidar Kondo of Jamuraa who also explains the green cards. Sidar makes sure your guys connect so that you can draw additional action. Being able to curve your three drop Tymna into a four drop Sidar and then draw a card is great. And at least in my built I’m running things like Brood Monitor and Captain of the Watch who don’t get unblockable, but their sidekicks do and they’re good for blinking with Felidar Guardian (who’s also unblockable).

    1. I like Kondo, also. I actually brewed a Kondo/Shidiqi deck for an article a few weeks ago and I like how it turned out. Going wide is a good way to connect, also. Good input.

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