Checking in on Phyrexia: All Will Be One

It’s been about five months since Phyrexia: All Will Be One came out, and that’s around the point at which I like to look at a set, checking for deals and thinking about what I want to stock up on in anticipation of future growth.

The timeframe for ONE is an impressive thing: It’ll be Standard legal until the fall of 2025. I’m not ready to spec on Standard cards only, but if a card is good there too, in additional to the casual and Eternal formats, then that’s a lovely bonus.

So let’s take a peek and make a list, shall we?

Some caveats before we get into the list: I’m using EDHREC data, which is the best indicator we have access to. The casual popularity of a card can also be reflected in a card’s price, but EDHREC stacks up only the information from the most connected players. For example, I’ve never uploaded a deck there, though I really ought to. It’s good data, but it’s a self-selected sample of data. 

Additionally, keep in mind that we live in an era of constant reprint risk. Secret Lairs, Commander decks, reprint sets…all of these add up to a certain amount of danger that spec purchases will get tagged again. There’s no evading this, but since this set is just a few months old, I’d be surprised if anything here was reprinted in 2023. Next year, though, I have different expectations. With Standard having a three-year period, I won’t be shocked if there’s a supplementary set of Standard reprints.

I also want to call attention to the collation of ONE. This is a set with a very high amount of variants. In addition to the original frame, we have showcase, manga, borderless, step-and-compleat foils, and oil slick foils. Plus the concept versions of the Praetors. And the Phyrexianized Planeswalkers. That’s a lot! Where possible, I’ll make it clear whether I think the best profit will be from the most premium versions or if I think you should brick up on the more basic versions.

Cankerbloom (Cheapest version at 17¢, most expensive $1, in 32,000 decks on EDHREC) – I’ve never really cared about making money off of uncommons or mythic rares, and Cankerbloom is going to make us some money. It’s been very rapidly adopted as a card that does a lot of good things, and gets around Elesh Norn/Torpor Orb. Those effects are remarkably effective at shutting down a lot of casual interactions, and creatures are pretty easy to recur in green decks. I think I’d prefer to have a stack of the step-and-compleat foils, rather than try to get a couple hundred of the regular nonfoil, but the big out of a buylist or two surely appeals more than the slow drip you’d get with selling the special foils to Commander players one at a time.

The Mycosynth Gardens ($2 to $10, 28k decks online) – Amulet Titan decks are in love with this card, as their whole deck is based around getting lands into play as fast as possible. Gardens can become an extra Amulet very easily, and that puts the deck into overdrive. The Commander demand is there, but what’s also great about this land is that it’s so wide-open a card. Every artifact that comes out makes this card better. Here, given the big gap between the basic versions and the FEA copies, I’d prefer to have a stack of the regulars. Having this go to $5 means you’ll buylist each one for a dollar or two more than you paid, and that scales nicely. The FEA copies will take longer to drain out.

Conduit of Worlds ($3 to $4.50, 29k decks) – I’ve played with this card and it’s exactly what you want in Commander. Fetchlands are glorious with it, and the long-term card advantage from the recursion is very real. The cost is low, the card is cheap, and there’s not too many FEA copies on TCGPlayer as to have me worried. The premium versions are definitely where I want to be for this card, as it’s Commander-centric and those are going to be the folks who make it happen.

Thrummingbird (10¢ to $1.25, 43k decks) – This is a reprint from Scars of Mirrodin, which is why the EDHREC number is notably higher than the other cards on this list. Proliferate decks are capable of being poison, superfriends, +1/+1 counters, you name it. The Bird is cheap and can almost always find someone to hit and get your proliferate on, and I want to have a stack of step-and-compleat foils ready for long-term gains. That’s the only fancy version, and should pay off in the end.

The Dominus Cycle (very wide range, 11k to 23k decks) – All of these cards are very good at what they do, doubling something you want doubled. Sometimes you want these as the Commander, sometimes in the 99, but there’s few decks that don’t enjoy these interactions. The Oil-Slick versions are the lowest-supply versions and have already felt that pressure, so if you wanted to go for a different version, that’s totally understandable. The SAC versions are sweet, but I think for these I’d prefer the growth potential of the regular frame now. They are surprisingly cheap for many of them, and I’d be expecting the regulars to go $10 to $20 before the super premium ones go $40 to $80.

All Will Be One ($11 to $30, 17k decks) – This is another card with very open-ended potential. Every card they make with any kind of counters makes this good. Did you know that you can cast this enchantment, play a Dark Depths, and smash any target for ten damage! Helix Pinnacle is now two kinds of win condition! There’s also some infinite combos as well in Commander, such as Quest for Pure Flame.

We have a complication here, though: This card has regular, foil, and then Oil-Slick Foil. No FEA, no Showcase. This makes the Oil-Slick a much more attractive target to me, and while it’s a higher buy-in at $30, this will have combo potential with every new card and should get new combo enablers pretty regularly.

Ichormoon Gauntlet ($3 to $18, 12k decks) – I mentioned Superfriends decks with the Thrummingbird but this is another regular or Oil-Slick card, and so you should grab what copies you can. Don’t sleep on the mini-proliferate ability either, as that can get way out of hand too.

Venerated Rotpriest ($2 to $6, 15k decks) – When it came out, this card was all over the place, making a combo deck possible in Standard and Pioneer, especially with tutor effects and copy effects. The premium versions are cheap, but I’m more in favor of the basic versions so that you can sell matching playsets easier when new combos appear.

Elesh Norn, Mother of Machines ($30 to $110, 35k decks as card and commander) – Hate her or adore here, MOM is a beast in Commander and has the price tag to match. There’s SO MANY versions of her, so you pick the one you like and get that. A reprint on this card is inevitable, though, so whatever you purchase should either be for personal use or you have a specific and quick turnaround planned for the card. 

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.

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