Tag Archives: Commander finance

You Sunk My Battleship

I talk a lot about rising tides lifting boats, but we cannot ignore what has just happened. Commander 2015 is out, and while the new cards’ prices are obviously in flux, starting at arbitrary preorder numbers guessed at by individuals and stores like Star City Games (and not always good guesses as the $1 they wanted for Blade of Selves can attest) and being buffeted by the waves of supply and demand until the stormy seas  calm down and the prices find their equilibrium, wherever that may be.

It doesn’t do us a ton of good right now to even talk about new singles, because the most efficient way to get the cards is still to crack precons, something I recommend. It’s roughly $120ish to get a full set of the 5 decks, which is basically a buy-four-get-one-free deal at MSRP, and it’s worth it for all of the deckbuilding stock, if that’s what you’re into.

Forget Deckbuilding, Where’s the Money?

If you aren’t into that and are more interested in investing, I’m going to advise we stay away from new cards for a while. The one real good buy-in opportunity for preorder cards was the $1 Blade, and when I saw on Saturday that was its  price, I wrote my weekly article a few days early. By the time it was published Tuesday, a day earlier than normal, the price had quintupled. I think that ship has sailed, but there is opportunity to buy cheaply if we know where to look.

Remember how I keep harping on Wurmcoil Engine? There’s a very good reason for that. We can learn quite a bit from Wurmcoil Engine about the future of singles prices, and the past Commander sets are going to be an excellent guide. Let’s spend some time looking at the prices of cards that are down, but not down for the count.


Can you tell when Commander 2014 was announced? That’s when prices started to really tail off. What’s interesting about this graph isn’t just that it recovered, but you can actually see the exact day the sets were released. Can you guess where November 7 is? That’s right.


So the set came out and the price immediately stopped falling. Dealers lost confidence entirely, taking their buylist price lower and lower, but the retail price of Wurmcoil stopped declining. Now, this is likely due to people not buying any copies of old Wurmcoil because they can get a new one for $30 along with the Dualcaster Mage that Wizards was so confident would be the new Snapcaster that they made a judge foil out of it and a ton of other great cards. The red deck was stacked, and while speculators were all-in on the white deck to get Containment Priest and throw the other 99 cards in the trash, the red one was mostly bought by players because Daretti is a cheater of a commander.


But even though people stopped buying the old Wurmcoil as much because they could get the new one, look at the price of the new one. This graph starts on November 12, a few short days after the set hit. Despite supply hitting a new high, demand hit a new high as well and an MSRP of $30 for the entire deck wasn’t enough to keep Wurmcoil under $20.

There are other cards like this that saw a reprint and whose prices rebounded nicely. Looking at a few older examples can help us pick out some cards that are going to tick back up, albeit slower than Wurmcoil (which is a bit of an anomaly but which also demonstrates the power EDH has to influence prices).

A Lesson in Tools

A useful thing to know how to do on MTGPrice is to search for cards by set. At the top of the main, non-blog page, there are a few tabs, one of which is “Browse sets” which brings up a page where the sets are listed chronologically with the newest set on top. You can sort the cards in each set by price and see which cards are surprisingly expensive.

When Commander first debuted, Scavenging Ooze was the slam-dunk of the set, retailing for around $50. Currently, twenty cards in Commander are more expensive than the now-heavily reprinted Scavenging Ooze (and good for Wizards for reprinting it so it could be played in Modern), and only twelve of those cards were new in that set. Eight reprints surged or maintained while Ooze plummeted. Of those eight reprints, three of them surged or were propped up by Modern. That leaves five cards with enough EDH playability to have made them good investments. Was there any money to be made buying at the right time? What time was that?

MTG Price’s data on Commander sets starts in 2013, but we can still learn a bit about how time has a way of making initial investments look good a few years down the road.


While Wizards hasn’t reprinted this card since, it has taken some of the pressure off with cards like Dictate of Erebos and Butcher of Malakir, a card the company will never stop printing every three months. Buying  even two years after the set was released, you would have made money on Grave Pact, turning a $5 initial buy-in into an opportunity to sell at retail for $15.  Grave Pact is never not going to be good in EDH, but I invested in Dictate of Erebos instead—and barring a reprint, I’m looking forward to that card hitting the $5 mark before I sell my hundreds of copies all purchased at bulk rare price.


Some of this growth could be due to Modern, but this is a planeswalker and it’s hard to keep an original-five planeswalker down. Despite ten different versions of the guy floating around out there, all are worth roughly the same $8 right now.  I like almost any non-Tibalt planeswalker at around $4, and Daretti’s price is making me salivate.


It’s hard to keep a good Wrath down, and this may be the best EDH Wrath ever with modes that you can play around or be entirely unaffected by. The price is flat now, but you could have turned $4 into $10 just by recognizing this card was perhaps the best white Wrath effect in EDH. Not bad.


And these don’t even give the creature hexproof!

Commander 2013 has a few attractive targets, but even this far back, we haven’t quite seen how things are going to play out for a lot of them. Commander 2013 was bought to such an extent that there are only three cards that retail for over $5 in the whole set, new cards and reprints combined.


It seems like they’re printing new chase utility lands rather than reprinting, so we may be safe from Homeward Path reprints for a while, giving the price a chance to grow a bit. It’s demonstrated the ability to hit $6 and I think it can again and more. The card is very good, and while Commander 2013 pushed out way more copies than the original Commander set, Homeward Path is in the Naya deck, easily the worst-selling of the five. If it doesn’t get reprinted, this is likely an $8 to $10 card in two years. However, I’m not buying in too heavily at $4.


Utility uncommons can turn into powder if they get reprinted, but Deceiver Exarch surged due to a Modern-predicated buyout. You could have gotten these for practically nothing for a whole year and a half and ridden the wave. Are there any good Modern cards hiding in other Commander sets? Yep! And a recent printing in Commander 2015 is going to crush their prices, giving you a very good buy-in opportunity. We’ll be on the lookout for cards that have a place in EDH but are also Modern staples. I can think of one in particular.


This card is going to shrug off a lot of reprints. Will this ever settle under $5? I don’t think so. EDH players rarely take decks apart, so every time they build a new deck with green in it, they’re going to want another copy of this. Modern players rediscover this card every once in a while and buy them by the playset. Commander 2015 just reprinted it and threatens to smash the price a bit, but if we ever see the days of $3 Eternal Witness again, it’s a snap buy. Can this card see $7 again? I am actually fairly confident that it can. The reprint risk is high, but I think how far you buy below $6 is all guaranteed profit when it pops back up to its previous high.

Not all cards can shrug off repeated reprints, however. Some are starting to show signs of fatigue.


Back-to-back reprintings in Commander 2014 and Commander 2015 have probably cooked this goose completely. It doesn’t help that Solemn was in Built from Scratch, the same deck as Wurmcoil Engine, meaning the deck needed no help from a card like Sad Robot to bring up the value.

I expect the Ezuri deck, where it’s reprinted this time, to be a little different. With a lot of the value spread over $5 cards, it’s a totally different situation. That could be enough to prop the value up a bit, but I don’t see potential. I imagine Solemn will be in Commander 2016, as well. I don’t think they need to do these every year, but the cards that are only appropriate to be reprinted in one of the decks, or not at all, stand to gain a lot from people building new decks. Remember, Commander doesn’t need to grow that much as a format, it just needs to not shrink—because every new deck is a new excuse to build a bunch of decks.


It’s clear this wasn’t price growth as much as price correction. The blue Commander 2014 precon was garbage: hot, greasy garbage. The white precon got Containment Priest and the blue one got Dulcet Sirens. The price fell way too far predicated on the reprinting being the pin in its price’s balloon that would keep it from surging out of control. Here’s the problem: it’s in a terrible deck and the card is just too good. Any card that is too good for the bad deck it’s in could see a price correction like this saw. Rift isn’t done going up, either, and should settle a little below its pre-drop price of $6 to $7. If you bought these at $1, you’re feeling good right now, especially since the RTR versions never dipped below $2. Next week, I’ll be trying to find cards analogous to this and a few others from this piece.


Did anyone not see this coming? Yet how aggressively was anyone really buying at $2? And why not? This is a stupid elf that makes other stupid elves. It’s perhaps the best elf lord ever printed. Did we not expect it to double in a year’s time and climb higher if it’s not printed again? There are insanely popular tribes out there and their staples shrug off reprints because it’s s fun to have multiple elf decks. My Ezuri elf deck and my Nath elf deck aren’t going to have the same color sleeves so I can switch a bunch of cards between them. I’m going to buy another Imperious Perfect because I’m not a poor. Everyone else will, too, and the increased supply is going to create increased demand.

What happens isn’t always easy to predict, though.


Sometimes the card doesn’t correct like you expect it to. There are a few things going on here, and the first is that it was reprinted in another deck so that’s going to curb its price growth potential quite a bit. The second hiccup is that the new “tuck” rule means this card isn’t quite the “suck it, nerd, your commander is gone forever” card that it used to be. But what people lamenting the fact that you can’t short a card are forgetting is that this is still practically the only way to remove a troublesome permanent in mono-red, and mono-red is really fun in EDH sometimes. I mean, it’s the worst color and it isn’t mitigated by other colors, but you can still do some fun and annoying stuff and if you want your commander to be Daretti or Godo or Kiki-Jiki or whomever, you’re going to have to have a way to remove permanents that isn’t Nevinyrral’s Disk. This is that. I expected this to go up already, so I’m a little puzzled. The Commander 2014 version is a whole dollar cheaper, probably because Wurmcoil is picking up so much slack that the rest of the cards in that deck are practically chaff, which is odd because almost every card in the red deck is better than almost every card in the blue one. Sometimes it’s not a meritocracy out there, folks.

What’s Happening Next Time?

I am looking forward to coming back hard next week and giving you my picks for cards that are soon to reverse the dip they took after their reprintings.  There is opportunity—just look at how much money you could have made buying Cyclonic Rift, Austere Command, Exarch, or a few dozen other real “growers.” Fortunately, the growers aren’t always show-ers, and if we can root them out, we could have as much as a year to get the copies we want before the prices start to soar.

Check in with me next week and we’ll take a look at some of my picks. As always, leave it in the comments and let’s make some money.

The Rising Tide’s First Wave


You knew I was going to address the Commander 2015 spoilers. With a lot of spoilers condensed into a few weeks, I’m going to have to basically address every card I can each week, since there is a lot to go over in a short time.

I’m potentially going to mention cards I’ve mentioned before in previous articles, but unlike previous articles, which highlighted archetypes that could emerge, these predictions are predicated on actual spoiled cards and there’s likely to be a lot more pressure on the cards due to the impending printing of new stuff.

I am going to talk exclusively about the five legendary creatures spoiled today, because all of them have the potential to launch new archetypes or replace older cards within their particular archetypes, and I think they will have the most profound effect on prices. This will be less in-depth  than the other articles about these color combinations, but while those were speculative based on the abilities typically given to cards in those combinations, this is predicated on the actual, spoiled cards. There’s a lot to go over, so let’s get down to it.

Daxos the Returned


Potentially the best card spoiled so far with experience counters, this guy can get out of control very quickly. I have talked about enchantment-based decks before, with creatures like Heliod at the helm, but this guy is perfect. Are there cards we’re going to want to jam in a deck with Daxos as the commander?


This seems like a shoo-in. Before, I discussed how good this was with a commander like Heliod, and while that meant this was likely to experience some growth eventually, I think Daxos as a commander is going to put pressure on this card right away. Every time you make another enchantment creature with Daxos’s ability, this taps for more mana. That alone is stupid. Using a ton of mana to pump out more tokens means you get out of control quickly. Black and white are great colors for enchantments as it is, and Theros block gave us a ton of exciting permanents that are enchantments in addition to their other types. Spear of Heliod is a great way to give yourself an experience counter then buff the creatures you throw out with Daxos.

Serra’s Sanctum itself is just dumb. While it doesn’t get the love in Legacy that Gaea’s Cradle does, this is just as good in some EDH decks and everything that made Cradle seem like a solid investment applies here. This card is on the Reserved List, and unlike Gaea’s Cradle which had extra copies due to the premium printing, all we have are regular Sanctums. This is a $30 card that could easily hit $50 and is never going to be bad in EDH or get reprinted. This seems like a no-brainer to me. The odds of this being in the Commander 2015 precon are zero percent.


This is just going to shrug off reprints for days. With five printings and a nearly $10 price tag, this is an EDH staple. This s a very, very good card and it is very good in a deck like Daxos. Drawing cards is never bad, losing a life isn’t too arduous in a 40-life format, and playing this to give yourself an experience counter feels great to me. I don’t think this will go down a ton for very long if it is in the Daxos deck because it’s so ubiquitous in EDH, the price is trending upward, and we could see the Wurmcoil effect we saw with the mono-red deck from last time repeated here. I would call the odds this is in the precon less than 25 percent, and I don’t even think the reprinting would be that bad. If it is reprinted and the price tanks, buy these at its price floor. It absolutely will recover.


This is very expensive and is only getting expensiver. If you’re not inclined to shell out $15 for a card with growth this flat, just remember this is going to get a boost from people building around Daxos. If this isn’t in the deck, and I don’t think it will be, the price has upward pressure. A reprinting would be brutal, but I think it’s a less than 35-percent chance. I would buy any copies I want for personal use now before the price goes up with  65-percent confidence. There is no pressure to reprint this for Modern, and it’s pretty expensive to jam in the precon. A card that soaks up that much of the value should really make the deck win, and this doesn’t help the precon beat other precons. If you buy one for your deck, buy two and put one in a box.

Also watch: Debtors’ Knell, Necropotence, Painful Quandary, Humility, Black Market, Land Tax.

Mizzix of the Izmagnus


This card is basically what I imagined it would be, although it has an interesting caveat that I hadn’t anticipated. I knew just straight, “When you cast an instant or sorcery, get an experience counter,” would be too good and they got around that nicely by forcing you to play bigger and bigger spells to keep getting the cost reduction. Luckily, there are some great spells for that in Izzet.


At $1.50 in foil, this is great in the deck but not super relevant financially. Still, I like how this plays with the new commander. You won’t lose money if it’s reprinted in the deck, and if you buy the foils you won’t gain a ton of money necessarily, either. Dealers aren’t super jazzed about this card—yet.


At $9.50, this foil has upside from new decks and no downside from a potential reprinting. I don’t like the non-foils at $1.50 due to reprint risk and limited upside.


This foil is pretty saucy under $3 also. There is real upside here and it won’t be reprinted in foil.


This guy is to Storm as Animar is to morph decks and Mind’s Desire is going to get bugnutty. At $12.50, the foils are a bit pricey and the non-foils at $1 suffer from a lack of upside and a somewhat decent reprint risk, but this card is going to go in a lot of the new Mizzix decks. Is Mizzix better than Melek is for storm? Hard to say. But X spells in general are going to be insane.

Also watch: Inexorable Tide, Blue Sun’s Zenith, Flash of Insight, Omniscience, Contagion Engine, Prosperity.

Mazirek, Kraul Death Priest


It seems unlikely that the Golgari card that gives you experience counters will be better than this, but you never know. What I do know is that this card is stupid, especially with creatures that have persist plus sacrifice outlets. Two persist creatures and a sac outlet gets dumb, quickly. This card is dumb.


You might want to build a Ghave deck just so you can put Mazirek in it and start cheating at Magic.


Modern Masters made this card stop being $15. Mazirek could make it $15 again, but not this year. Still, this isn’t a $4 card anymore.


Prossh and the printing of Dictate of Erebos brought this staple down from its all-time high of $14, but it could get up there again.


This personal Fecundity is pretty good, but I don’t think it is at its bottom yet, nor do I think the non-foil can be pushed much.


This personal Fecundity is a $6 foil and I think this deck gives it upside, and the fact that it’s uncommon means the non-foil is irrelevant.


Skullbriar could get some upside as a deck as well as Ghave. Mazirek will be a fine commander but it can also bolster some older decks people may have forgotten about.


Greater Good is unlikely to be in the deck, but a sacrifice outlet is essential, and this is one of the best ones you can buy. This price has been flat for a while, but it has demonstrated the ability to be more than it is now. Renewed interest in sacrificing things will shine a new light on this.

Watch also: Prossh, Skyraider of Kher, Dictate of Erebos, Miren, the Moaning Well.

Kaseto, Orochi Archmage


I’m not super jazzed about this, as Ezuri is much better, but since this is in the deck, we’re likely to see snakes happen, so let’s look at any snakes that get better with this guy at the helm since EDH players love to build tribal.


The Duel Deck printing pulled this card’s pants down. I’m not sure I think the upside from the potential snake tribal deck makes me want to pay $12.50 for the foil, but the risk of reprint there is lower. This is a snake I want to make unblockable or leave on defense with the ability to pump up at will.


This is under $3 in foil and is absolutely going places. The non-foil could be in the deck but I like the foils.


This card was going places already. You’re not buying in at the floor, but with a combination of new landfall cards and this card’s inherent unfairness with fetch lands, a new crop of which is in the hands of players and a new cycle of which is legal in Modern, this particular snake is gas.


At under $3 in foil and close to bulk for a mythic, I don’t leave a single one of these in a binder if I can avoid it. This is a snake that makes smaller snakes. Seems fine.


This gets a lot better when your commander can make it unblockable, and it’s cheap even in foil. If snake tribal is a thing, this is in the deck.

Also watch: Nature’s Will, Sasaya, Orochi Ascendant, Coat of Arms.

Ezuri, Claw of Progress


Wow. I was hoping the Simic experience counter guy wouldn’t suck and this doesn’t. At all. It’s irresponsibly good. This makes too many cards good to even list.


Can you get to five experience counters on Ezuri? What if you’re proliferating? I’d guess $5 for a foil Sage of Hours is going to seem very reasonable in a week.


Hnnnnnnng. This is a bit of a nonbo if you’re trying to put more counters on your commander, but just be good at Magic and don’t sequence your cards terribly, and all of a sudden you can start dumping counters on Biomancer every turn and every creature you play is nuts.


How good is this with Ezuri? Ugh. So good, that’s how.


Yo, dawg, I hear you like triggers, so I made your triggers trigger your triggers. Imagine all the experience counters you will get playing this then something like Coiling Oracle. This is stupid. It’s stupid how much better Ezuri is than every other card they’ve spoiled.


This is cheating. This is just absolute cheating. Mycoloth shrugged off a reprint and is headed for the stratosphere as it is and I can’t imagine a ridiculous commander like Ezuri doesn’t put a ton of upward pressure on this already decent price. This card is insane with Ezuri. I’m brewing a deck just by making a list of insane cards.


I don’t know how much money you make buying this promo at $1, I just wanted to point out how insane this card is in an Ezuri deck. Jesus.

Also watch: Every hydra, Gilder Bairn, Doubling Season, Hardened Scales, Primal Vigor, Intruder AlarmCloudstone Curio, Inexorable Tide, Contagion Engine, Thrummingbird, basically every Simic card.

Why doesn’t this card say “non-token” so you can’t get 100 experience counters with a single Avenger of Zendikar? Why?

We’re seeing some pretty good cards and there are a lot of older cards identified here that I’m very confident about the upside on. A lot of decks are about to be built, and the cards in those decks that didn’t get reprinted have a lot of upside in their futures. Look what Nekusar did to wheel effects to see what kind of upside we’re talking about for the best cards in these decks. EDH is a serious price driver, and we’re about to see a lot of building going on.

I’m not super happy about getting EDH sealed product every year since it feels like too much to keep up with, but as long as I write for MTGPrice, I’m going to be on top of it and do the analysis so you don’t have to.

We’re going to get some new spoilers as the days go on, so check out MTGPrice for coverage and my weekly article series. Until next week!

Making More Enemies

Welcome back to the articles series that tricks finance people into caring about EDH and tricks EDH people into caring about finance. I like the concept of “edutainment,” but I think I am beginning to like the concept of “eduception” better. It’s like that video “Donald Duck in Mathmagic Land”  where you realize after the fourth of fifth viewing—this is a great alternative to Fantasia while dropping acid, by the way (seriously, don’t drop acid and watch Fantasia. I can’t speak to the acid part, but I have watched Fantasia enough times to know that the experience will end with you in a padded cell)—that it was trying to teach you math. You just watched a math video, nerd. You’re a disgrace to that Pink Floyd T-shirt.

Last week, I talked a lot about what could happen when Wizards prints more Commander sealed product, and while a lot of it involves crushing $5ish cards into total powder, some of it involves, potentially, getting Wurmcoil Engine back, making it cheaper for a minute, selling a ton of product, and us not losing too much money on Wurmcoil Engine. It’s a great situation to be in.

Can we see other Wurmcoil-tier reprints? Maybe! Do I know what they are? No, but I can guess! Last week, I identified some cards in the appropriate price range that would get more copies in players’ hands, not tank the value a ton, and make the product attractive for years to come. Could every deck have something this good in it? Maybe. It really depends on a lot of factors, not all of which we can anticipate.

What I can do is warn people holding onto some cards that are likely to see a reprint while it’s not too late to dump them. If they don’t get reprinted, you can grab them for the same price later. Let’s talk about what could be in this year’s wave of enemy-colored Commander decks. My hope is that I’ll get through two colors today, because I won’t have to introduce the concept of the series like I did last week, but you know me. If I only get through Golgari today, this three-parter could turn into a five-parter, but I doubt anyone will complain because the only way that happens is if there is too much value in this installment. Let’s start demonstrating some of that value.

Golgari Stuff

Remember the wiki article I linked last week?  I’ll be using that as a guide for the potential themes of the deck. These are things Golgari does well and one or more is certain to be featured in a Commander deck.


Golgari is going to get stuff back from your graveyard. White does this okay, but since the days of Animate Dead and Regrowth, we’ve seen Golgari plant a flag in this territory.


This is a card that honestly could shrug another reprinting off. How is this $10? The Duel Deck version is closer to $8, but that’s still absurd for a card with two reprintings. Duel Decks don’t always tank cards, of course, but this is a non-mythic in Modern Masters as well. This is great for a lot of graveyard-based strategies—letting your mana recover from greedy digging, letting you reuse lands like Ghost Quarter and Blighted Woodland (Wizards is not putting Strip Mine in a Commander precon) and jams more crap in your yard for later recovery. It’s a solid card, is at the right price point, and I regret not saving this for the end of the article. This was literally the first card I thought of.


I made some money off of this card, so naturally, I love it. Standard players didn’t see it as the, “I’m playing Abrupt Decay literally every turn” engine I saw it as, comparing it instead to Staff of Nin, but Caleb Durward played one copy in his sideboard, which caused it hit $8 briefly, and I buylisted a hundred copies for three times what I paid for them. What a great weekend.

Anyway, this seems like the kind of card that, while it doesn’t need a reprint, could get one. Bulkish rares have been crushed into true bulk under the wheels of a precon with a theme before.


This is another card that doesn’t care how many times you reprint it. The cheapest printing is still $7 and it could probably shrug some more off. The cool thing about reprints in precons and such is that the rarity doesn’t matter—it may have a silver expansion symbol but there are exactly as many Izzet vs. Golgari Eternal Witnesses as there are Life from the Loams.(Lives from the Loam? [Ed.: Nah]). A card originally printed at uncommon is still super hard to find when the copies get cleaned up as quickly as they do, and they’re not three times as abundant as rares in precons.  This isn’t as bad a candidate as it seems, and if it dips in the short term, it’s sure to recover.


This is a card that it wouldn’t suck if Wizards reprinted. Expensive enough to be in the Wurmcoil sweet spot and ubiquitous enough to likely see its copies gobbled up, a reprint of this might not be too bad for the non-foil price and wouldn’t touch the set foil or judge foil. Still, I could see this card reprinted, in a new border without the tombstone by the name, sort of like the judge foil. I could see this in a Golgari Commander deck quite easily.

Exiling from the Graveyard

This is an ability we see in these colors, but I’m not sure there is a ton of money to be made predicting what we’ll see.


Look at me, I’m Nostradamus, except I predict the obvious with pinpoint accuracy.

Perhaps there are real cards that would be affected, though.


This could be shot down mid-recovery, and while there isn’t much precedent for a card from Commander precons being reprinted in Commander precons, this would at least be on-theme. Modern will want this card forever, Legacy will want this card forever, and even Commander will want this card forever. It’s not quite Wurmcoil-tier in terms of price, but it certainly does work, doesn’t it?


Does this feel “wrong” to anyone else? I don’t know what it is about this mechanic. It seems too, I don’t know, proactive compared to much of the reactive graveyard hate that is a little more judicious and targeted. This seems like a card Wizards wouldn’t put in a precon. It’s too efficient and unreliable.

Still, the price is right and a Commander reprinting certainly hurts the upside of the non-foil a great deal. M11 hurt the foil significantly, but that sort of thing can happen. It seems unlikely we’ll see another reprinting in a real set, so the foils seem pretty safe. As much as I am not sure the precons will jam something like this, the possibility exists. If it did get the nod, the strong growth we’re seeing would be impacted severely.


This has little or nothing to do with EDH, but this card is pretty good in Modern and even better in Legacy—especially Legacy. Even Vintage could benefit from a card like this. A free, surprise, Crypt against Dredge, especially in Vintage, seems effective.

How is this foil only a stinkin’ dollar? I am sure I’m overstating its playability or something. I don’t know how else to explain the discrepancy between  how good I think it is and how cheap it is. EDH players might like a card like Grave Consequences, also, but that’s only a quarter and is likely to stay there.


Not an exciting theme, but you don’t need to build around the theme to jam a few good cards with regeneration in the deck.


You whippersnappers won’t remember this, but this card was $20 for one glorious weekend. I was opening these and trading them for two copies of Supreme Verdict, four copies of Detention Sphere—all kinds of insanity. That was back when people still traded in person, mind you. Crazy times we were living in. This was before the movie Frozen came out and it sucked to be a parent.

Nowadays, it hardly matters if this gets reprinted or not. There are better trolls, but this does more work in a Golgari deck that wants more than just a Cudgel Troll.


This card used to buylist for next to nothing. Now it’s a real, actual card. It’s pushing into Wurmcoil territory and wouldn’t suck as a reprint. This card does work. While it “feels” a bit more Selesnya than Golgari, I think we can all agree this would be a welcome reprint. I’m not saying sell these, but I will say maybe wait to buy.


This is a very, very specific card for a very specific set of circumstances, but Wizards has reprinted utility lands in Commander product before, and this is certainly itching for it. Wizards will need to find a way to reprint this soon or it’s going to continue to grow out of control. This is not just for rat decks, either, as it regenerates cards like Taurean Mauler and Mutavault. We’d need a strong rat or squirrel theme making this more of a wishlist reprint than a likely one, but this is a card I wouldn’t invest heavily in, as it’s likely to see reprinting in the future.


This seems more likely. I feel like any day now, a Commander deck or some other manner of supplementary product will give us a reprint of the Hollow. This is a great utility land for a green EDH deck, and since green is the best color in EDH, this is a good candidate for a lot of decks. This has hovered around $10 to $12 for a while, and it has some upside if it escapes reprinting in this year’s Commander product, though how much upside I don’t know.

J/K. As Justin pointed out below, Hollow is on the Reserved List. And why not? It’s way better than Citanul Centaurs. I guess we’re stuck with Yavimaya Hollow at its current price and higher, which sucks, but with no real way to reprint this card, the sky is the limit.


Thrun is a pretty narrow basket to put so many eggs in, but you can do worse than a very good creature if you’re looking for somewhere to stash the value from a set. I don’t see this as super likely, but this is a creature that regenerates and isn’t total bulk. It’s good enough in Modern and even fringe Legacy strategies that we could use an unobtrusive way to reprint it, but maybe the price is too high for that, now.

Permanent Destruction


This is the card a lot of people think will be a shoo-in. I’m not so certain. While this certainly does work, I see it as similar to the “why put Vindicate in a precon when Mortify is almost as good at dealing with the stuff in the other precons?” argument I proposed last week. I’d like to see Maelstrom Pulse, and it certainly could use another printing, but I don’t like the odds.


This reprinting wouldn’t upset too much, and with the Conspiracy printing already attenuating prices, this seems like a fine candidate. As long as we don’t get stupid Plague Boiler, I’ll be okay. I don’t think this is too good to reprint, and I don’t think it’s too expensive to reprint. Pernicious Deed isn’t what it used to be, and EDH certainly isn’t driving its price up much. This would be fine.


A true EDH staple, this card has shrugged off multiple printings in Planechase and a Duel Deck. Its growth would be attenuated for sure, but likely would climb after a matter of months to a year, and getting more copies out there wouldn’t kill anyone. I see this as pretty likely, but which art would Wizards choose?


The wiki doesn’t say anything about this, but green-black could get some elves. This would be a decent place to jam a few elves to bring down the cost of some of the nuttier ones that haven’t gotten reprints lately. Which ones? I dunno.


This is pretty much insanity. A reprinting would make it affordable and mean you don’t need to pay fetch-land prices for an uncommon mana dork. Obviously last year’s green Commander deck would have been a better venue, but this oversight can always be corrected. Will it? Likely it will, but not in the Commander deck. There are some elves I expect to see, though.


This has already been crushed into powder, but sometimes Wizards reprints cards so they will be playable in the deck. This seems like a good choice. This is a card I could see being the commander if I weren’t so certain they’ll have a new card at the helm. This is a lot like Teysa in the Orzhov deck. Whether or not we need this financially, I think we’ll get it.


This won’t have much financial impact, but this is a very Golgari card. I like this both at the helm of its own deck and in the 99 of decks like Prossh and Shattergang Brothers. This card does serious work and is a must-kill for opponents.


Glissa is sneaking its way up to the $5 mark. I don’t know if it’s not too narrow to go in a precon, but if you jam a Mind Stone, a spellbomb, and a Sylvok Replica in there, you might see this do some work. It’s very Golgari and being able to fetch cards out of the ‘yard plays well with dredge. Who knows? This could be in there.

Wurmcoil-Tier Possibilities

Other than Genesis and Asceticism, which cards do I think have a decent shot at being the Wurmcoil of the Golgari deck, if there is one?


Lord of Extinction may be one of the EDHiest cards ever. This is pure “big creatures do work,” and I love it. This gets huge, and when shot at someone’s dome with a Jarad, usually ends the game for that person. It’s just solid, will work in the EDH precon no matter what the theme is, and could use a reprint to bring the price down, though Wurmcoil shrugged its reprint off and this could, too, depending how popular the deck is. A sicko new card for Legacy is always a possibility.


Maybe this is too cheap, but this seems on-flavor, at least. I could see this getting a reprinting soon, but I wouldn’t necessarily bet money on it.


I know I said this could go in the Orzhov deck, but this would work in a Golgari deck as well, and everything I said last week about this card still applies.

Final Thoughts

Remember how I thought I might get through Golgari and Simic today? Yeah—not happening. I’m way over my word-count cap, and I don’t even care. You’re welcome for all of the value. Next week, we’ll tackle Simic, meaning I guess this is a five-parter now.

Argue with me, please. What did I omit or get wrong? Leave it in the commentses, you nasty readerses. Got any beef with my picks? Did I omit your favorite Golgari card? Will the Wurmcoil-tier card only be in one deck? Do you have predictions for Simic? Leave it all below. Until next week!

PROTRADER: Naval Academy

I recently got to thinking about tutors. Academies are all about tuition. There are a lot of useful tutors in EDH, and they’re absolutely worth talking about at some point, so I decided to make that point today. There are broad tutors, narrow tutors, and very, very narrow tutors, and I want to talk about all of them.

Does this seem out-of-flavor with this series? This series was predicated on identifying emerging cards from newly spoiled sets and seeing how their inclusions in the metagame would shake things up. As their stocks increased due to increased adoption, the surging tide would lift all boats, and buying into those other boats (cards) at their lowest price by anticipating their increased use based on spoiled cards was the name of the game. I’m talking about a broad category of cards as opposed to talking about how one particular printed card would affect prices of other cards.

They’re simple rules. I made the rules. And now I want to break them? What the hell?

What if I told you that this article was predicated not on a card that was going to get printed but rather on a card that was not going to get printed? How do we know? Well, I look at what little we know about Commander 2015 so far.

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