A little over a week away is the official release of the new MTG Doctor Who Crossover! Spoiler season began just yesterday, and players are excitedly preparing their Commander collections to receive the influx of new, creative abilities.
Interestingly, Commander players may not be the only ones interested in the new Doctor Who cards. Whether it’s a Secret Lair or cards being reprinted in the main Commander decks, there are some surprisingly valuable lands that may get a bit cheaper, thanks to surprise reprints!
Announced on the Magic: the Gathering Facebook page and shared on Reddit were three new reprints to one of the most utilized land cycles in the Modern format: Horizon Lands.
These lands all tap for one of two colors but cost one life each time you use them for mana. Otherwise, by tapping the land and paying one additional mana, you can sacrifice the Horizon Land to draw a card.
Sunbaked Canyon is particularly powerful in Modern Boros Burn. Your life total generally doesn’t matter too much since you’re just trying to kill your opponent as quickly as possible. That said, flooding is a real problem with the archetype. How do you kill the opponent if you don’t draw your burn spells?
Sunbaked Canyon helps by doubling as card draw when you don’t need it anymore. Of course, it’s better to draw your preferred ratio of lands to spells, but Sunbaked Canyon can up the consistency of your game consistently by turning into card draw if you need more gas.
This is the principle that these lands follow. Fiery Islet, also seeing a reprint in the Doctor Who Commander decks, sees a ton of play in Modern in Murktide decks while also occasionally appearing in Crashing Footfalls, Burn, Merfolk, and Storm decks in Legacy. Additionally, Waterlogged Grove, the Simic land for the Horizon cycle, also has a confirmed reprint in the Doctor Who Commander deck series.
At the time of writing, Sunbaked Canyon, Fiery Islet, and Waterlogged Grove have a secondary market value of $17.78 (and rising), $7 (stable), and $3.25 (stable) accordingly. Notably, with new artwork on the way, these reprints may not affect prices for the cards too much, but will make them more accessible nonetheless.
Because the Doctor Who Fast Land reprints were announced a few weeks ago, thanks to their appearance in a Spookydrop 2023 Secret Lair, we won’t spend too much time talking about them again here. You can instead read more about them in our Spooky Drop 2023 roundup.
Regardless, Fast Lands see a ton of play in the Pioneer format and some in the Modern format. These formats are fast, and having lands that tap for multiple colors guaranteed to enter untapped in your first few turns can help make your gameplan consistent.
For reference, the most expensive nonfoil Fast Land is Spirebluff Canal, coming in at a market value of about $13.50.
The recent reveal of the full Timey-Wimey decklist for Doctor Who revealed that Slow Lands also appear to be seeing a reprint as a part of the new Doctor Who Commander decks.
Opposite of Fast Lands, Slow Lands are guaranteed to enter untapped as long as you control two or more other lands. Both Fast and Slow Lands will enter untapped as your third land, but past that point, Fast Lands only enter untapped if they are played before your fourth land, and Slow Lands only enter untapped if you play them after your second land.
These are, obviously, too slow for formats like Modern, but Slow Lands see extensive play in Standard, Pioneer, and Commander, meaning that there is still a ton of demand for them.
At the time of writing, the revealed lands in this cycle getting a reprint are currently Stormcarved Coast, Sundown Pass, and Deserted Beach, worth about $10, $5.25, and $8, respectively.
Other, Less Exciting Land Reprints
A common place that Commander preconstructed decks have skimped on their quality in the past is the manabase. In fact, some manabases to preconstructed Commander decks with multiple colors are so poor that players become outright furious about it.
Many of the lackluster land cycles commonly used in preconstructed Commander decks are making a return once again. Still, when used alongside these much more optimal lands also getting reprinted, we may have a much more powerful manabase than players are used to seeing in preconstructed Commander decks with the upcoming Doctor Who Commander decks.
Check Lands refer to a cycle of lands that require a Basic Land type associated with the colors it produces to be in play under your control for it to enter untapped. Unfortunately, Check Lands do not have these basic land types themselves, which can make for some relatively slow rollouts if you draw multiples of them without the basic land type you need.
Sadly, most other dual land cycles, like the ones mentioned in this list, also do not have basic land types, which makes Check Lands even less likely to enter the battlefield untapped if multiple different cycles are trying to pad out your manabase.
For that reason, Check Lands don’t see a ton of constructed play outside of Commander, but they are seeing some Pioneer play at the moment.
If you play Commander, you’ve probably played a Temple Land. These are so commonplace in preconstructed Commander decks nowadays.
The upside to Temple Lands is that they allow you to fix your draw and tap for two different colors of mana. Scrying one can be rather powerful. The downside is that these lands will always enter tapped.
Reveal Lands are similar to Check Lands but require a slightly stricter condition to enter the battlefield untapped. Instead of the basic land type already being in play, Reveal Lands demand the player to reveal a land card in hand with one of the Basic Land types that the card taps for. Depending on how you sequence your plays, just having one land with the basic land types does not guarantee all your future Reveal Lands that require said land type to enter untapped, making them more problematic than Check Lands.
These aren’t the only land cycles appearing in the Doctor Who Commander decks. The tri-colored uncommon lands from Khans of Tarkir, Battle Lands like Prairie Stream, Cycling Lands like Irrigated Farmland, and the Odyssey Filter Lands like Skycloud Expanse also appear to be making an appearance, at least according to the official Timey-Wimey Commander decklist.