All posts by Jason Alt

Jason is the hardest working MTG Finance writer in the business. With a column appearing on Coolstufff Inc. in addition to MTG Price, he is also a member of the Brainstorm Brewery finance podcast and a writer and administrator for EDHREC's content website. Follow him on twitter @JasonEAlt

Pro Trader: The Best Bad Color


Welcome to another installment of the series “Jason writes an article.” Sometimes it is on here, sometimes on other sites, but always article. This is the 541st article I have written on MTG Price, and if that sounds bonkers to you, it is to me, also. Today I am not going to do my normal article from my perspective, fearing it might seem exactly the same from your perspective and that I have been overthinking it for 540 articles, and that’s just this site. What I think I am doing differently is that I’m going to talk about a color then the cards in that color. I don’t always do exactly that. It’s different. Shut up.

What’s the worst color in Commander? That’s right, Red, and it isn’t close. But a few years ago, people would still have said Red. But a few years before that, probably still Red. The point is, White has almost always been the second worst color, some argued the worst, because it didn’t mana ramp as hard. We have seen every possible variation on Knight of the White Orchid and by now there are two or three Archaeomancer’s Map-tier cards in White that make it keep up nicely with the Green-based ramp decks. I have seen a Demonic Tutor used as a Farseek more than once, but, sure, White is the worst at it. Black has Cabal Coffers, Green has mana dorks and Cultivate, Blue has mana dorks and Cultivate if you built correctly and added Green, and Red has Seething Song. What does White have? Well, lately, it’s had everything.

I wasn’t even going to write this specific article until I decided to look at the most-played cards in the, well the set that has most recently been fully-spoiled, I guess. We have 8 cards revealed from March of the Machine, the perfect amount of cards to have revealed before you reveal a million-dollar one-of-a-kind collectible card and a White Remand. And let’s be clear about something else – I just found out about the White Remand because I was procrastinating on twitter between paragraphs – I had no idea White got a Remand, a card that’s basically good everywhere except for EDH, until after I had started my “White gets everything these days, huh?” article. White IS getting a lot, if not everything, and one trip to EDHREC will bear that out.

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ProTrader: Magic doesn’t have to be expensive.

Pro Trader: March Timeses On


Welcome to March Madness, the only time of the year where you hear the word “Gonzaga” and it’s not the name of one of the 595 Legendary creatures introduced to the game in 2022 (I looked it up – it’s 347. I was barely exaggerating and I was trying to be as hyperbolic as possible). The March I am mad about is March of the Machine. We could talk about college basketball but I don’t know anything about it and Corbin Hosler does, and that’s two reasons not to talk about it right there.

Last week we talked about the two major decks from March so far, which is wild since the set is barely spoiled. Still, we have enough Legendary creatures for people to do quite a bit of brewing.

For reference, here was last week

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ProTrader: Magic doesn’t have to be expensive.

Unlocked Pro Trader: Time Marches On

Readers !

We have more cards and I have more picks. Last year at the end of the year was hectic and while it still feels too soon to have cards to write about and I literally haven’t busted all of my packs of the last set (by “last set” I mean “last set I’m going to buy collector booster boxes of”) but we have cards so cards we must discuss. Here are the quick hits on the new stuff.

There are a LOT of decks here for the relatively few spoilers we have. Part of that is that people are building a lot and the game is popular, and part of is that EDHREC spent the last year trying to get the daily scraping routine to finish faster, resulting in data days and sometimes weeks earlier than before. We have a clear winner and some clear other favorites, so let’s do quick hits before everyone else figures out how much data we have.

I mean, yeah. It’s fairly crazy that staples like Ramunap Excavator and Tireless Provisioner have such high synergy given their ubiquity across various formats, but there hasn’t really been a good landfall commander in the last 2 years that would lower these scores at all, so high synergy and high inclusion are basically the same in this case.

This card which warped other formats is not only legal in EDH, most people forget that it’s an option. Deathrite is very good in this deck and since it’s demonstrated that it can hit $12 repeatedly in the past and its one actual reprint was in Eternal Masters, I think this is a good buy under $7.

Eventually this card will stop cycling and go up more or down more. The buylist seems to be following the curves which makes me think that automated processes are buying these at a certain buylist number and driving retail up for a bit. If you’re asking me to bet whether this hits $15 or $5 next, my money is on $12 and if it hits $15, buy me a beer or something.

I was so pleased with myself for grabbing cheap foils of Retreat to Coralhelm, the one they had no trouble reprinting in foil, and ignored $0.30 foils like this one. I thought it was too easy to see Coralhelm coming, turns out I played myself and missed big on this one. In a world full of different kinds of Lords Windgrace and Obs Nixilis, it would have been nice to grab a brick of these at literal dirt. Sometimes you just have to give a foil uncommon 7 years to really establish itself.

Pop quiz, hot shot. You see an erstwhile $30 card on the Reserved List that is going to be popular in a new deck based on a character from the deck that made this go up from $0.25 making it one of the first huge hits from this article series. What do you do? Bonus points if you can answer after shooting Jeff Daniels in the leg. Like in Speed. That one is for some of you.

Lol, OK, wow.

This would be a great time for Villainous Wealth to go way up but it’s been printed way more times than it needed to have been. Still, the foils are cheap and have never been cheaper. Opportunity knocking?

The regular foil keeps getting tanked, but there is one version I don’t hate financially.

The etched foil has hovered between $3 and $4 since the card came out and this huge bump from Omnath could be a very big bump in price. There are lots of versions and another foil, but the etched foil is barely more than the regular foil and is the only version of this card with a positive price trend in the last 3 months.

This is already on its way back to $5, but if you don’t think it will hit $10 again, you’re still doing great buying in around $3. This whole cycle seems great in general, and insane in Omnath. Even the garbage Jeskai one could see play! Also, the garbage Jeskai one is better than I remember.

And now my riskiest call of the article. High risk high reward here – hitting $35 again on a $17 buy-in feels like cheating. I hope this gets there, but it’s also super cheap just in general for what the card does and I can’t think of an Omnath player who won’t want to try and cheese with this.

We can go deeper into the lineup of popular commanders next time – I didn’t expect to find so many hits in cards that are basically the abilities of Thalia and Gitrog Monster and an all-color Omnath with no landfall abilities. Omnath has a ton of ways to be built, so make sure you use the filters to look at the full pages for each build. Here, I’ll show you.

Each of those themes will give you a separate page, and the high synergy cards will be different. Unbound Flourishing isn’t breaking any records in general, but with that a nice, easy way to play the deck (and a fun one), all kinds of cards from Sphinx’s Revelation to Aurelia’s Fury are in play. There’s a lot happening, and we’ll get to more next week. Until next time!

Unlocked Pro Trader: March Madness


We have seen enough of the new cards to speculate baselessly which, thought I said differently last week, is the best way to speculate. I am going to semi-baselessly speculate because I’m too good at this not to have a basis even when there is no basis. Or something. Look, there are new commanders, I’m going to look at them and think about cards that go in the decks, OK? This is like my 12th year doing this, and writing what I am going to do right before I do it is kind of boring to me but I also know I really need to do it.

Let’s look at some cards and I’ll talk about some other cards and we’ll call it a day. Sound good? OK, here we go.

This is a strong one. Right away, landfall stuff, the way I would typically build an Omnath deck (I have 5, soon to be 6. Yes, I have 2 Locus of Creation decks. Sue me) but this one doesn’t care if the mana is from lands. In fact, is way more unfair if it isn’t. Here are 2 sources I think are superlative.

If they ever stop printing this card, it could go way up. Also, if they just stop printing foils, the foils can go up, so either way, we’re likely in bad shape here. I don’t trust them not to reprint this, and riding the wave back up from $3 to $6 isn’t my bag these days. It is free money for you, though, until it isn’t.

The foil thing was a joke, there’s 1 and it’s bonkers. Could this be $200 on CK again? Maybe! I don’t want to buy at $150 and try and find out, but that 99 Euro NM English copy on Card Market might find its way into my basket. If you want less risk, I have an idea.

This card once flirted with $30 and now it is worth less than half of that. Could this be $30 again? It’s going to be more than $12 again, that’s for sure. This has already demonstrated how high it can go and I plan to buy a lot of copies of this for personal use before I even start to speculate. This feels very, very strong to me in the deck, and with mana burn gone, there is no downside at all to this mana machine.

I don’t want to wade into which 3 color creatures are good, but you know what’s very good in a deck that plays Conflux like this deck probably will?

That’s right, Dream Halls. This is basically half of its historic peak as well. Was that buying driven by speculators trying to dump crypto gains into something stable? Maybe, but it’s on the Reserved List and it’s dirty in a deck like this where you have a good shot of pitching any given 3 color card for another one. This deck is going to be so much fun.

Black Market seems super good in this deck, too, honestly.

Looking at the Black Market price graph reminds me of the article where I talked about how I expected Blind Obedience to recover. Whelp! Extort is a sick ability in Commander but not enough cards have it. While Blind Obedience is too expensive right now, consider this monster.

As is the trend this week, this card also used to be worth more and is better now than it previously has been. Pontiff is very good but very slow. Play it in a slow deck, like this one.

I think this set is going to be huge and that’s a shame because I still haven’t really processed Brother’s War. Next week we’ll have some data to dig into so, until then, check my twitter feed, the Pro Trader’s Discord and your bulk. Until next time!