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Finance in a Flash: Beast Mode

Written by LegitMTG Staff on . Posted in Finance, Magic Culture

Did You Know?

Sunpetal Grove is $5 TCG Mid. Most people still think these lands are $2-$3, making them great trade eveners.

Brad Nelson tried to #Hoof the world this weekend and Martin Juza succeeded at GP Bochum. Consequently, its price more than tripled. Craterhoof Behemoth is out of stock on SCG and $16 TCG Mid.

Quick Hits

1. I somehow omitted Sphinx’s Revelation from my last article. The card is everywhere now and is $13-plus pretty much across the internet. I don’t think this card is done rising and don’t feel bad trading for them even at the new price.

2. Because of the success of U/W Flash and counterspell decks in general, Cavern of Souls has more than doubled in the past two weeks on Magic Online. While I doubt the paper price will go up that much, they are a necessity in the new Standard format and demand will increase over the next few weeks.

3. Silverblade Paladin and Sublime Archangel have had success in white-based aggressive decks the past month, and I’ve had trouble keeping any I acquire for very long. That said, I’m unsure how much room there is for either of them to grow despite their liquidity. Silverblade Paladin is approaching $10 on many websites, and Sublime Archangel is nearing or above $30 despite not being a four-of in all the W/G aggressive decks from the weekend.

4. Bonfire of the Damned is starting to see more play in various Naya and Jund strategies, usually alongside Garruk Relentless or Garruk, Primal Hunter. Bonfire is very well positioned against the aggressive white strategies and hoof.deck that did well this weekend and their continued success could see a spike in the card’s price (It’s only $28 on Legit MTG, and is a real buy-low candidate). Both Garruks are fantastic against  the various Sphinx’s Revelation decks and should continue to gain popularity as those decks continue to place well. Garruk, Primal Hunter in particular has been rising and could hit $12-$15 in the coming months.

5. Two fairly different monored decks Top 16’d SCG Seattle in a weekend where aggressive decks did very well overall considering how many Thragtusks were about. Most of the red staples have already jumped, and Hellrider is up to almost $7 TCG Mid. Hellrider’s adoption into B/R aggressive strategies gives it more room to grow than cards like Ash Zealot and Stromkirk Noble, which appear to be approaching their peak values before the format changes with Gatecrash.

6. Deathrite Shaman is in a very good place. It’s both the best card in Reanimator mirrors and crushing U/W Flash in Standard, while also being a Modern staple and being played in two of the Top 8 Legacy decks at SCG Seattle. The card isn’t going anywhere, and I have to admit I was wrong about it seeing consistent play in Standard.

7. Talrand, the Sky Summoner and Wolfir Silverheart are seeing more play and are both very cheap ($3 and $4). These intro-pack rares saw much higher prices last summer, and could easily double in the next month or two if their respective archetypes remain Tier 1 (U/W Flash and G/W Aggro).

8. It appears your brains may no longer be safe so guard them carefully. There were two black aggressive decks in the Top 16 of SCG Seattle, two in the Top 8 of GP Bochum and two in the Top 8 of GP Charleston, including the winner. Time will tell whether success is sustainable, but there will be people asking for Gravecrawlers and Geralf’s Messengers again if you have any left.

9. Falkenrath Aristocrat and Thundermaw Hellkite had a lot of success this weekend. Unfortunately I think both are near their ceiling, hovering near $20.

10. Jace, Architect of Thought has been falling, and I don’t think its done. Along with the Shocklands, this will be a great buy-low in late December when everyone is focusing on Modern and Gatecrash.

Last Word

The current Standard format hates interactivity. U/W Flash tries to interact on a basic level — luckily Cavern of Souls is there to put a stop to some of that nonsense. The white aggressive decks dare the opponent to interact with Silverblade Paladin or die. Hoof.deck does not care what its opponent is doing, trying to ‘combo’ them out as soon as possible. Somberwald Sage is the obvious card that only works when no one is playing spot removal.

It’s Thragtusk’s fault.

Why would you spend a card and mana to kill half a card? What if they have four mana open? Restoration Angel completely destroys you. What if they just have another Thragtusk? We’ve had a month of Thragtusk warping Standard, until we got to the point where these ‘goldfish’ strategies are viable trying to go over the top or simply run over everyone’s favorite cow. The monored deck in Top 8 of SCG Seattle had a whopping six burn spells in the maindeck, instead opting for all threats all the time, including Hellion Crucible.

The obvious solution to me is reusable interactivity. Olivia Voldaren is insane in the current format even though the rest of Jund feels somewhat lacking. If she finds a new home or Jund itself adapts, expect her to dominate and consequentially spike in price. Cards like Intrepid Hero, Izzet Staticaster and Ulvenwald Tracker also seem very well positioned in the coming weeks and are fairly easy to shoehorn into existing archetypes.

— Paul Feudo

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