Did You Know?
Tomoharu Saito has turned Standard on its head twice since Gatecrash was released. The first deck showed us the power of Burning-Tree Emissary and helped launch the price of Boros Reckoner into the stratosphere while putting two copies of the deck in the Top 16 of SCG Edison.
The absurd starts Burning-Tree Emissary is capable of causing has already begun warping the format, spreading to other archetypes in force. Take a look at this Naya Humans List.
Naya Humans by Smh
That deck is terrifying, with 12 potential three-power plays on Turn 1, haste creatures and lots of burst damage in the form of Boros Charm and Ghor-Clan Rampager. Luckily it looks like we have another Saito brew to the rescue.
If you’re looking to beat the hell out of aggressive strategies, I’d start here.
So where does this leave us financially? Unfortunately, there isn’t much money to be made from Burning-Tree Emissary directly because it’s an uncommon; and the best card against those strategies, Boros Reckoner, has a very high point of entry now. (I think it’s very possible Reckoner isn’t done rising. After a good showing at the Pro Tour, it could be our first $35 retail Standard rare.)
What cards are directly affected by the rise of Boros Reckoner both financially and otherwise?
- The most obvious answer is Abrupt Decay, which is capable of killing Reckoner and the myriad of aggressive creatures he mows down. (For similar reasons, Dreadbore is also a decent call). Still only $7, I could see this Legacy staple hit $12-plus within a few months.
- Thragtusk is already on a downswing in popularity and has a third event deck coming in less than two weeks. And the former best creature in Standard gets wrecked by the minotaur wizard. We also live in a world of Skullcrack, and sometimes five life and a creature just isn’t good enough (see Rampager, Ghor-Clan). Thragtusk is an easy sell in the short term, though it’ll probably be a decent buy in March if the price really tumbles.
Raise your hand if you misread Gyre Sage when it was first spoiled and though its mana ability was based on power and not +1/+1 counters. Obviously it’s not that good, and people playing Saito’s Naya list have been in one of two camps about the card — either BUY IT NOW because it’s insane and will be $7-plus next week or dear god what can I replace it with!? I have no idea which is correct, but Sage can be bought for less than $2 from basically anywhere.
Devour Flesh was fairly unheralded when Gatecrash was spoiled, but it is a giant beating, especially with Snapcaster Mage. Combined with the increased play of Liliana of the Veil in Esper and Jund strategies and it might be time to dust off Sigarda, Host of Herons, who also doesn’t get blown out by Boros Reckoner. I’m unsure whether you want it in the maindeck, but it certainly has its place somewhere in the Naya Midrange strategies combining with Kessig Wolf Run as a great way to kill off control opponents. She’s a Standard-playable mythic angel that can be had for less than $11. If she hits, you do the math.
Valakut by Ssd13093
There are worse things to own than Primeval Titan — they still trade well (do people think it will be unbanned in EDH? I understand where the casual demand comes from), and despite two printings, there is still money to be made if this version of Valakut takes off. Unlike Primeval Titan, Oracle of Mul Daya is still casual gold; if it gets any competitive demand from Modern, it could double in price fairly quickly.
Merfolk by Pokey44
The best plays in the Merfolk deck are Aether Vial and Mutavault but both are inherently risky because of high entry points and very real chances of being reprinted in Modern Masters. That said, have you seen the price of Vendilion Clique? If Merfolk catches on, Mutavault could surpass it.
I have no idea if this deck is good. Saito tweeted it this morning and he’s already 2/2 in this new format.
Here we see more copies of Domri Rade and Gyre Sage like we did in the Naya list. The short-term ceiling on Domri Rade is much higher than other Standard mythics; while I’m not sure how likely it is, if you want to try and hit it big this weekend there are worse bets than the new planeswalker.
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