12, Jun, 24

Amazing MH3 Flip-Planeswalker Sees Massive 600% Price Spike!

Article at a Glance

The official release of Modern Horizons 3 may not be until this Friday, but players have already started testing all sorts of new goodies in Modern. On Magic Online, a plethora of content creators were given early access to the cards to start showing off their power. A few unique decks really stood out, perhaps none more intriguing than mono-red Storm.

With the full group of Medallions getting reprinted in MH3 and debuting in Modern for the first time, Storm received a lot of hype rather quickly. With Ruby Medallion in play, cards like Desperate Ritual, Pyretic Ritual, and Manamorphose can generate a bunch of mana and help you chain spells together.

Recently, well-known content creator Aspiringspike has been putting in work to tune red Storm. The deck’s potential for busted starts caught a lot of attention from the community. His version of the deck features a multitude of new cards, from Ruby Medallion to Unstable Amulet. The card that stood out the most, though, was Ral, Monsoon Mage. Players watching soon realized how important Ral was to the archetype. Over the past few days, Ral has spiked immensely in price. Let’s take a closer look at this jump and break down exactly what Ral brings to the table.

Huge Price Spike

Ral, Monsoon Mage

Back on June 7, Aspiringspike began his journey with red Storm. He stated that on the first day of MH3 early access streaming, Storm was the most impressive deck he played. As he worked to craft and tune the deck to his liking, one of the things that remained constant was the inclusion of a full playset of Ral, Monsoon Mage.

Well, Ral’s performance clearly resonated with the player base. According to TCGPlayer market price history, Ral sat at under $5 on June 6 in its traditional, non-foil form. Come June 7, and Ral skyrocketed to nearly $16 in price. Since then, Ral has only climbed further, making its way to $19 on June 8 and now $28 as things currently stand. This means the card is up nearly 600% in less than a week!

From June 7 onward, the number of sales for Ral has also risen significantly. Today, June 11, seven different sales went through on TCGPlayer where traditional, non-foil copies of Ral were purchased for over $29. This begs the question: how valuable is Ral to the Storm deck, and what makes the archetype so scary?

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Ral’s Role in Storm

To help answer the first part of that question, it’s important to go over the deck’s main gameplan and how Ral fits in. Almost every card in the deck fits into one of a few categories. First, we have the rituals. Pyretic Ritual and Desperate Ritual both net you one mana when cast without a cost reducer on board, and with a cost reducer in play, Manamorphose acts as a ritual and a cantrip at the same time.

Next, we have cards that help you churn through your library. Wrenn’s Resolve, Reckless Impulse, and Glimpse the Impossible all help you increase your Storm count significantly and dig for your win conditions.

After that, we have the win conditions themselves. Unstable Amulet is excellent here, repeatedly pinging the opponent any time you cast a card from exile with the cards named above, or from your graveyard with Past in Flames. Of course, Grapeshot still makes an appearance but isn’t a necessary card to find with Unstable Amulet in the mix.

Finally, and most importantly, we have the cost reducers: Ruby Medallion and Ral, Monsoon Mage. The printing of both of these cards into Modern completely transformed how Modern Storm looks and functions. Right off the bat, this deck gets some extra consistency by getting to stay primarily one color. This deck doesn’t have to branch out to blue for Baral, Chief of Compliance and Gifts Ungiven, which is a huge deal considering that your primary rituals specifically make red mana.

On top of that, Ral is much more versatile than Baral. Ral accomplishes the same task of lowering the cost of your Instants and Sorceries, but you also have the luxury of flipping Ral when applicable. In many games, you’ll want to decline to flip Ral until you’ve cast a bunch of Instants and Sorceries. Then when you finally flip Ral, you can use Ral’s ultimate ability right away. This usually will give you the tools you need to close the game if you couldn’t already.

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Is Red Storm Broken?

Ruby Medallion

While it’s obviously still very early in MH3 Modern, Storm does look like one of the strongest decks available to play. The fact that both Ral and Ruby Medallion can be cast with only red mana means that winning the game turn two is a very realistic proposition. With two Lands in play, you can cast either Pyretic or Desperate Ritual, follow up with Ral or Medallion, use the last mana floating to cast another ritual, and start chaining spells from there.

As fast as the deck can be, though, what puts it over the top is its resiliency. Older Izzet Storm lists were a bit reliant on not only sticking a cost reducer, but also getting Gifts Ungiven specifically to resolve. This version, on the other hand, plays a high density of card advantage sources that enable you to play a long game.

The presence of Ruby Medallion even means that your opponent can’t always just rely on using Instant-speed removal to slow you down. In this sense, fighting against red Storm isn’t as easy as some players (me included) initially thought. If you’re looking to jam some games of Modern, expect a lot of Storm and Nadu, Winged Wisdom combo in your future.

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