24, Apr, 23

Foil $150 Commander Staple Sees Massive Unexpected Reprint!

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Article at a Glance

The early spoiling of March of the Machine: The Aftermath has sent the reignition of MTG’s spoiler season into overdrive. Last week was, understandably, likely intended to be a quiet one, but that all changed when we got 50 new cards out of nowhere. Come Monday, an entire Secret Lair Superdrop has silently appeared, and there are a lot of spicy Commander cards getting new, exclusive treatments. If you’re in the market for some of these MTG staples, this may be the best time to pick them up!

Thassa’s Oracle

One of MTG’s most infamous cards is getting a reprint in the 2023 Spring Secret Lair Superdrop. As mentioned repetitively in Commander Advisory Group briefings, this was one of the cards being monitored as a potential ban, but it does not seem to be a concern anymore. Rule Zero does a lot of the work needed to keep this card under control at more casual tables. While the Demonic Consultation is a big part of cEDH, it’s not breaking the format like Flash was – which means the card does not need a ban.

Why are so many people wary of this card? Thassa’s Oracle is a win condition that encourages players to empty their library. When the Oracle enters the battlefield, you look at the top X cards equal to your Devotion to Blue. You win the game if you look at your entire library in the process (whether that’s the exact amount of Devotion or less).

This is much more difficult to interact with vs. other empty-deck win conditions like Jace, Wielder of Mysteries, or Laboratory Maniac. Both of these cards require the player to manually draw a card from an empty library to win the game. In response to this attempt, the opponent can destroy the win condition and cause the player to lose instead. This does not work with Thassa’s Oracle since destroying the card only affects the player’s overall Devotion but will not affect the ability resolving. If you have zero cards in library, you will still win the game with zero Devotion. There are other ways to circumvent this, like forcing the Oracle player to draw from an empty library with the ability on the stack or to Stifle the ability itself. Still, Thassa’s Oracle can be really difficult to stop.

Thassa’s Oracle also sees consistent competitive play as a win condition in various combo decks. The card sees play in Breach combos in Modern, Doomsday piles in Vintage, various combo decks in Legacy, and some occasional Pioneer play as an alternate win condition to Lotus Field Combo and the new Rona Combo deck.

As of the reveal of this reprint, Thassa’s Oracle is currently going for about $12-15 for non-foil copies on the secondary market. The card only has one printing in Theros: Beyond Death before this announcement.

Read More: Massive MTG Leak Spoils Sought-After $30 Reprint!

Stoneforge Mystic

Stoneforge Mystic gets a beautiful new art treatment as a part of Rebecca Guay’s artist spotlight dropping with the Spring Secret Lair Superdrop. This card is a significant player in the Modern format and is also relatively popular in the Legacy format. This card’s ability to both search and cheat equipment into play has given it a long and controversial competitive history. It was even banned for an extended period in the Modern format.

While the card is an all-star in the omnipresent Hammertime decks, Stoneforge Mystic is, traditionally, best suited to synergize with expensive Living Weapon cards. These equipment spells circumvent the card type’s biggest downside – it is not self-sufficient. Equipment needs creatures to function, and players need to pay additional costs to get the card to provide value. Living Weapon circumvents this by creating a 0/0 Germ token and equipping the equipment to it for free.

Stoneforge Mystic is capable of searching your library for cards, meaning that the card in an equipment-themed Commander deck is definitely a staple. However, most of the card’s secondary market value comes from competitive formats. Priced at an immense $34 per copy on average, many MTG players who want Stoneforge Mystic will buy four copies of it, driving a playset’s price up to around $136. Hopefully, this much-needed reprint will take the heat off of Stoneforge Mystic’s price tag.

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Grand Abolisher

Grand Abolisher is a cEDH staple that occasionally sees Legacy play as well. Basically, Grand Abolisher makes it almost impossible for your opponent to interact with you during your turn. They cannot cast spells or activate abilities, artifacts, creatures, or enchantments. This, generally, means you can do whatever you want during your turn, which easily converts to a win in a cEDH format.

As good as the Abolisher is, especially for its mana value, it being stuck to a 2/2 body means it dies to almost everything. In the very likely scenario where this resolves without getting countered, Grand Abolisher can grant you one turn of protection to do whatever you want, which is all many cEDH decks really need.

Because of the card’s immense Commander demand, Grand Abolisher has quite the secondary market value. This card only has three printings, two of which are not from core products and are, therefore, very scarce. You can generally find a Grand Abolisher for about $35, but hopefully, this reprint will help lower that price a bit.

Like many cards on this list, while non-foil Grand Abolishers are expensive, foil ones are obscene. A foil Grand Abolisher will cost around $150 on average. This is because only one copy of the card is currently available in foil, and it has been out of print for quite some time.

Read More: 5 Most Fun Build Around Legends in March of the Machine

Umezawa’s Jitte

Umezawa’s Jitte has been a feared powerhouse for most of the card’s existence. Players respected this card so much that it has never actually been Modern legal, banned upon creating the format. Power creep has made this card’s abilities a bit less impactful overall, but this hasn’t stopped the equipment to see Legacy and Dual Commander play.

Because the card is largely banned in most places where it would do the most work, this Jitte doesn’t have a price tag that its history would suggest. Hovering around the $9 mark from its cheapest reprint on The List, Umezawa’s Jitte will likely see its secondary market value crash as a result of this reprint.

Read More: Historic MTG Staple Jumps by $20 Due to Insane Combo Deck!

Emeria, the Sky Ruin

Emeria, the Sky Ruin sees some occasional Modern play but has a stronger home in the Commander format. This card is almost a no-brainer for any mono-white deck to include. Controlling seven or more Plains allows Emeria to resurrect a creature every upkeep! The only downside to this card in a mono-white deck is that the card enters the battlefield tapped. If you desperately need to curve out in your early turns, this could theoretically mess that plan up. Commander, however, tends to go for such a long period of time that the downside is far outweighed by the upside being reasonably achievable in a deck that primarily runs Plains for lands.

Emeria, the Sky Ruin has about an $18 secondary market price at the moment, but a lot of this has to do with the card’s availability. The Sky Ruin only has three printings, all of which are not widely available. Notably, Emeria only has one foil printing available prior to this printing from the original Zendikar set. If you’re looking to foil out your Commander deck, this could be the most affordable that a foil Emeria, the Sky Ruin will be for quite some time.

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Thassa, Deep-Dwelling

Thassa, Deep-Dwelling is a Commander favorite that synergizes incredibly well with Blink or Flicker strategies. Offering one free ‘Blink’ at the end of each of your turns, Thassa, Deep-Dwelling is a potent value tool that’s tough to interact with. Turning on Thassa as an indestructible creature is a bonus, but, generally, you should not be playing it if the card is not offering value with its trigger. Thassa can also help deal with an opponent’s aggressive board state by tapping creatures for four mana, but this ability is somewhat overpriced.

Either way, Thassa’s promise of immense value combined with a restrictive print run gives the card some strong secondary market presence. The card currently sells for around $16 in most cases but does have an inconsistent price on the market.

Read More: Historic MTG Staple Jumps by $20 Due to Insane Combo Deck!

Nature’s Will

Before this Secret Lair reprinting, Nature’s Will only has one copy from Champions of Kamigawa. The four-mana enchantment is quite powerful in a Commander setting, allowing you to untap all of your lands whenever one of your creatures successfully deals combat damage. Additionally, the opponent who took damage must tap all their lands, immediately forcing out any interaction they may have.

The demand for Nature’s Will has declined over the past year. The card, which was worth $30, is now worth only $10. This effect is strong in Commander, but the card’s advantage is too conditional and long-term for most competitive formats.

Linvala, Keeper of Silence

Linvala recently saw an appearance in the March of the Machine set. Teamed up with Drana, the new iteration of this classic hatebear is unquestionably stronger than Linvala, Keeper of Silence. Both of the cards are powerful in Singleton formats in Commander, but otherwise, the only thing that Linvala has going for her over the new alternative is her color identity. Linvala and Drana is Orzhov, making it much less accessible in Commander.

Linvala, Keeper of Silence has about an $18 secondary market value. I expect this to drop heavily in response to this card’s reprinting but, like many other cards in this Secret Lair drop, there is some serious foil value to be had. Foil copies of Linvala, Keeper of Silence can go for as much as $250!

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