With Pro Tour Lord of the Rings underway in Barcelona, we’ve already been gifted with a wide range of preview cards and news to go over. The Preview Panel at MagicCon Barcelona featured spoilers from the upcoming Doctor Who set as well as Wilds of Eldraine. Wilds of Eldraine, in particular, looks like it’s going to be a blast. From returning themes from Throne of Eldraine, such as Food tokens, to powerful individual cards like the white Craterhoof Behemoth, Moonshaker Cavalry, this set has a lot to offer.
One important feature of the set is the return of a bonus sheet. Bonus sheets add a handful of reprints from across Magic’s history to specific sets. These additions add a unique element to booster packs that enhances the experience of both opening packs and drafting with them. We are starting to see bonus sheets more and more in recent sets, and each bonus sheet typically features a theme that is relevant to the set itself.
For Wilds of Eldraine, this theme is none other than Enchanting Tales. Since a ton of these cards are being opened, it also cuts down the price of expensive reprints which, normally, is a good thing. Unfortunately, given the recent spoilers for the Commander Masters reprints, this will likely drive down the overall selling price for Commander Masters Product too.
Commander Masters Value
Commander Masters has already sparked some outrage from the community regarding how expensive product can be. With boxes having reached over $400, players largely expected a decent chunk of the rare and mythic rare reprints to be worth a bunch of money. Some of the Commander decks, such as the Sliver Precon, only heightened frustration among players due to the massive amount of important, pricey reprints that were missing. Still, as disappointing as some of the reprints were, there were still some heavy hitters to look forward to.
The problem is that a lot of the expensive reprints from Commander Masters were Enchantments. Cards like Doubling Season and Smothering Tithe were major highlights that helped keep the value of Commander Masters product up. Not only does the Wilds of Eldraine bonus sheet focus on Enchantments, but both Doubling Season and Smothering Tithe were among the eight cards spoiled already.
Given how much bonus sheets caused the value of reprints to tank in the past, it’s safe to say that Commander Masters’ secondary market value took a big hit. It’s interesting to see a focus on reprints in sets so close together, but the fact that there’s already overlap of some of the more expensive cards that Commander Masters has to offer greatly hurts the market value of Commander Masters as a whole. To understand exactly why bonus sheets have caused the value of reprints to tank, it’s important to look at how bonus sheets have been handled historically.
A Brief History
Bonus sheets provide players with a collection of reprints that go along with specific sets and utilize specific themes. Each of the cards within these bonus sheets are typically given unique treatments as well. The first print sheet that utilized a collection of reprints like this was with the Timeshifted cards associated with Time Spiral. These 121 Timeshifted cards showed off cards all from before Mirrodin and all with the Seventh Edition card frame and new purple expansion symbol. This would later encourage additional Timeshifted cards associated with Time Spiral Remastered. Just like with original Time Spiral, there were 121 more Timeshifted cards featuring a retro card frame and purple expansion symbol.
Since Time Spiral Remastered, there have been lots more sets using specific bonus sheets. Starting with Strixhaven’s Mystical Archives bonus sheet, we started to see cards of specific types be showcased in certain sets. These Mystical Archives showed off Instants and Sorceries, the Brother’s War’s bonus sheet focused on Artifacts, and most recently, March of the Machine displayed a plethora of Legendary Creatures in its bonus sheet. As the name Enchanting Tales might suggest, Wilds of Eldraine is keeping this pattern going by utilizing only Enchantments in its bonus sheet.
So far, eight of the 63 Enchantments from the Wilds of Eldraine bonus sheet have been previewed. These cards feature special storybook artwork associated with Eldraine aesthetics. Of the eight cards previewed thus far, seven of them are currently worth $10 or more. Doubling Season is notably worth an astonishing $60 at the moment. This is, by all means, an incredible reprint, but it also happens to be one of the many chase cards in Commander Masters releasing in August.
A Big Value Decrease
March of the Machine featured a wide array of Legendary Creatures in a bonus sheet known as “Multiverse Legends”. One of the most powerful legendary Creatures printed in recent years, Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer, was one of the most sought-after cards from the Multiverse Legends series. However, within the span of just two weeks, the card fell from roughly $205 all the way down to $55. Currently, Ragavan sits at $40. Why would a card as popular as this tank so far so fast?
Well, even if the demand for the card remained relatively high, the supply available would grow significantly. This was true of more than just Ragavan, too. The thing is, unlike the “Masterpiece” series associated with Kaladesh, the Multiverse Legends were not designed to be a rare find. In fact, every single pack of March of the Machine featured a Multiverse Legend slot. This includes both draft booster packs and set booster packs. This meant that there were copies of Ragavan being opened left and right. Even with unique treatment, the card, along with other Multiverse Legends, would crash in value.
Limited Gameplay and Affordability
Wilds of Eldraine is no exception and is set to feature one Enchanting Tales Enchantment in every pack. In general, the addition of bonus sheets to different sets are welcomed with open arms, especially for those who enjoy a unique Limited environment. While these bonus sheet cards are not Standard legal, they are indeed draftable. Many Limited aficionados praised the March of the Machine bonus sheet, which notably added the 10 “Companion” cards from Ikoria that provided a nice bonus to players that could meet the deckbuilding restrictions.
In this sense, bonus sheets can both make the Limited environment more interesting and simultaneously help make specific reprints more affordable. To many, this may sound like a win-win situation. However, Wilds of Eldraine’s bonus sheet in particular may cause some uproar given how close these previews come to the release of Commander Masters. It’s definitely worth monitoring how the value of Commander Masters product as well as individual cards from Commander Masters and the Wilds of Eldraine bonus sheet progress.