Magic Monies - 4/18/16

Little bit to talk about this week as we begin to stabilize the current metagame for both Standard with the release of a new set and Modern from a change to the ban/unban list.

Standard Metagame Changes

One of the most notable rises in caused by Shadows over Innistrad is the increase to a majority of the white cards getting played in nearly every top tier deck. This includes [mtg_card]Knight of the White Orchid[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Thalia's Lieutenant[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Archangel Avacyn[/mtg_card], and [mtg_card]Declaration in Stone[/mtg_card]. All three variations in Humans decks (WG, WU, and Monowhite) will play these cards, 3 out of 4 being a 4x in these decks. White-based midrange decks play 4x of all but Thalia's Lieutenant. It's hard to imagine any of these cards going down considering how much play all 4 seem to be getting.

If I had to hedge my bets, I'd guess Archangel Avacyn and Declaration in Stone are not sustainable. Archangel Avacyn isn't likely to be 4x in too many decks during it's time in Standard, so a $45 pricepoint feels way too high. Declaration in Stone is popular because removal is a bit limited since rotation, particularly in red. The only red removal the effective kills Archangel Avacyn is [mtg_card]Exquisite Firecraft[/mtg_card]. Not my optimal choice for removal. A new set could easily correct these issues in the format if the format doesn't correct itself.

Modern Metagame Changes

Of lesser notice is the buffs in price due to Modern ban/unban changes. In my previous Magic Monies, pointed out that it would be wise to keep an eye on cards played in Blue-based affinity decks, singling out [mtg_card]Gifts Ungiven[/mtg_card] as a solid target. Feels good to get one right. But I missed [mtg_card]Talisman of Progress[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Krark-Clan Ironworks[/mtg_card]. The WU artifact seems obvious in hindsight, but even I didn't suspect a jump to $5 each. But it's a price that I think will hold. That cycle of artifacts has a history of holding it's price well for not just Modern but Legacy as well. They tend to be goto colored mana producers in affinity decks looking for a long game. Krark-Clan Ironworks is common to add into a [mtg_card]Sword of the Meek[/mtg_card] combo to produce infinite mana and keep the combo going.

Also of note was that a new version of Scapeshift won an SCG Modern Classic, and seems to be gaining popularity. All you need to know is that this version plays 4x [mtg_card]Prismatic Omen[/mtg_card]. The card jumped to $10 when [mtg_card]Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle[/mtg_card] was unbanned some time back. But that version of the deck under-performed compared to the Blue-based control version of the deck. With this new version taking down the event after the ban/unban changes, the card jumped up to $15. It's not a big enough jump for me to outright say the price is unsustainable, but not sure I'd expect much more out of the card.

Miscellaneous Risers/Fallers Notes

  • I have no idea what happened with [mtg_card]Imp's Mischief[/mtg_card]. Believe me, I looked.

  • [mtg_card]Brindle Shoat[/mtg_card] has been out since 2012, but never got the jump it has been getting the past 3-4 weeks. Looking over the market on TCGPlayer shows 2 dealers with a total of 13 copies and one has 12 copies of them. This looks like a buyout of a cheap but low supply card where someone posted the card back on for sale at a price far higher than the card is actually worth. I have no evidence of this, but is seems a likely conclusion.

  • Bunch of cards that came into release with hype, but found no home are starting to tank. I think some ([mtg_card]Olivia, Mobilized for War[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Mindwrack Demon[/mtg_card]) actually do have playable decks right now that no one has discovered. Keep an eye on them because they could explode at a moments notice.

  • Related. Get your [mtg_card]Relentless Dead[/mtg_card] before the next set starts being spoiled. That's an easy one there.

Weekly Risers

[mtg_card]Imp's Mischief[/mtg_card]$4.75$0.91
[mtg_card]Talisman of Progress[/mtg_card]$4.99$1.95
[mtg_card]Knight of the White Orchid[/mtg_card] (DD: Knights vs. Dragons)$5.69$2.74
[mtg_card]Tetravus[/mtg_card] (Antiquities)$6.64$3.20
[mtg_card]Knight of the White Orchid[/mtg_card] (Magic Origins)$5.00$2.56
[mtg_card]Whirling Dervish[/mtg_card] (Legends)$15.20$7.98
[mtg_card]Brindle Shoat[/mtg_card]$9.26$4.95
[mtg_card]Thalia's Lieutenant[/mtg_card]$5.95$3.45
[mtg_card]Gifts Ungiven[/mtg_card] (Champions of Kamigawa)$22.06$13.04
[mtg_card]Knight of the White Orchid[/mtg_card] (Shards of Alara)$4.50$2.75
[mtg_card]Gifts Ungiven[/mtg_card] (Modern Masters)$19.50$11.99
[mtg_card]Krark-Clan Ironworks[/mtg_card]$6.40$4.21
[mtg_card]Prismatic Omen[/mtg_card]$14.99$9.88
[mtg_card]Archangel Avacyn[/mtg_card]$47.97$33.96
[mtg_card]Wall of Shards[/mtg_card]$3.35$2.47
[mtg_card]Drownyard Temple[/mtg_card]$2.16$1.61
[mtg_card]Glittering Wish[/mtg_card]$8.00$6.05
[mtg_card]Declaration in Stone[/mtg_card]$13.49$10.49
[mtg_card]Sylvan Advocate[/mtg_card]$6.41$5.11

Weekly Fallers

[mtg_card]Ulvenwald Hydra[/mtg_card]$5.77$8.40
[mtg_card]Killer Bees[/mtg_card]$6.31$8.99
[mtg_card]Relentless Dead[/mtg_card]$11.44$15.10
[mtg_card]Mindwrack Demon[/mtg_card]$4.80$6.23
[mtg_card]Westvale Abbey[/mtg_card]$11.73$14.91
[mtg_card]Olivia, Mobilized for War[/mtg_card]$11.06$14.00
[mtg_card]The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale[/mtg_card] (*)$719.79$900.00

(*) Represents Reserved List.