After months of ever-increasing anticipation, The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth MTG set launched last month on the 23rd of June. Since this date, and the prereleases a week beforehand, MTG players have thoroughly been enjoying this latest crossover MTG set. So much so, in fact, that most players don’t even seem to mind it being a Universes Beyond set anymore!
With plenty of awesome Modern and Commander playable cards, Tales of Middle-earth certainly has a lot to enjoy. Whether you want to spruce up a deck with new staples or build around a new combo, Tales of Middle-earth has what you need! As if that wasn’t enough, however, Tales of Middle-earth has even more to compel players to open packs: value!
Thanks to the litany of staples and interesting cards, opening Tales of Middle-earth packs can be quite a lucrative prospect. Subsequently, it’s useful to know what you should be looking out for when cracking packs! To help you do just that, throughout this list we’ll be going through the most expensive Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth MTG cards!
Before we get into the juicy details, however, there are some important caveats to go over. First and foremost, so we’re all on the same page, we’ll be determining prices today using TCGplayer’s Market Price calculations. Additionally, we’ll only be looking at standard art, non-foil printings of cards, today. Last but not least, we should also mention that prices on this list will fluctuate and change as demand wavers, so we’ll be doing our best to keep it updated over time.
Now that those caveats are out of the way, let’s get right into all the numbers! Here are the top 10 most expensive MTG cards from The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth!
10 | Palantir of Orthanc
To kick off our list, we have one of the myriad mythic MTG cards from The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth. As we’ll get to shortly, Palantir of Orthanc actually looks rather powerful, however, it’s worth addressing something first. As an extra caveat, it’s worth noting that new mythic cards are often overpriced due to their perceived rarity. This can often lead to inflated prices, that drop heavily once demand wavers.
Now that extra caveat is out of the way, it’s time to talk about Palantir of Orthanc properly. On the surface, this Legendary Artifact may seem kind of terrible, as opponents can repeatedly block your draw and make you mill. In the right deck, however, this effect becomes incredibly beneficial. So much so, in fact, that Palantir of Orthanc quickly becomes all upside.
Consider playing Palantir of Orthanc in a Thassa’s Oracle self-mill deck, for instance. On each of your end steps, opponents are forced to either let you draw or mill progressively more and more of your deck. Either one of these effects will help you win the game that much faster.
If both these effects aren’t enough, Palantir of Orthanc deals damage based on the mana value of the milled cards. Over time, this can turn Palantir of Orthanc into a substantial threat, which almost guarantees the draw effect. So long as it’s not swiftly removed by an opponent, that is.
9 | Gandalf the White
Since they double up on triggered effects from entering and leaving the battlefield, it’s no wonder Gandalf the White is expensive. If anything, this Gandalf is rather underpriced at the moment compared to the competition. Elesh Norn, Mother of Machines, for instance, is worth roughly $27 at the moment.
While this doubling ability is undeniably incredibly strong, it does come with a catch. This is because it only works on Legendary permanents and or artifacts. While this will limit the effectiveness of Gandalf the White somewhat, they’re still definitely powerful. Especially since on top of their doubling ability, they also give Legendary spells and artifacts Flash.
While they’re definitely not cheap already, don’t be surprised if Gandalf the White gets even more expensive as time goes on.
8 | Witch-King of Angmar
When we first wrote this list back in mid-June, cards like Witch-King of Angmar weren’t anywhere near this list. Sure, they were interesting and had some nice synergies, but they weren’t exactly game-breaking. Technically, this is still true today, however, one major detail has changed.
Since the launch of The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth, Wraith Typal (yes, Typal) decks exploded in popularity. This has made Witch-King of Angmar an excellent choice for many decks thanks to their The Ring Tempts You ability. Thanks to this ability, this variant of the Witch-King can expertly buff the Nazgûl which make up most Wraith decks.
Alongside this deeply synergistic effect, Witch-King of Angmar is a respectable defensive threat as they can gain Indestructible. If that wasn’t enough, this Wraith Noble also disincentives opponents from attacking. If you should take combat damage while Witch-King of Angmar is in play opponents who dealt damage will be forced to sacrifice a creature. This will obviously make players think twice about damaging you, which is a luxury in Commander.
7 | Witch-King, Bringer of Ruin
As if to highlight just how popular Wraith Typal decks are right now, this list has not just one, but two Witch-Kings. Separated by only a few cents in price, both these cards are automatic includes within the flavorful new Typal deck. Curiously, despite being more expensive, Witch-king, Bringer of Ruin isn’t the more synergistic card out of the pair.
Rather than pumping up the army of Nazgûl, Witch-King, Bringer of Ruin is simply just a great card in Commander. Forcing defending players to sacrifice their least powerful creature, this Witch-King variant can be an absolute nuisance to play against. Should you have a reliable way to give them haste, this creature becomes even more frustratingly deadly!
While Witch-King, Bringer of Ruin is definitely worth their $15 price tag, it is worth noting that they’re somewhat exclusive. Only found in Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth Starter Kits, this card has a somewhat limited supply. That being said, however, since they’re a guaranteed inclusion in the Starter Kit, they’re not too difficult to get ahold of
6 | Last March of the Ents
To put it simply, Last March of the Ents is an absolutely insane MTG card, especially in Commander. It’s so much of one, in fact, that, in hindsight, we’re staggered that this card wasn’t expensive during pre-sale. For better or worse, however, now the set has actually launched, MTG players have realized this card’s fantastic strength.
For the surprisingly low cost of eight mana, Last March of the Ents lets you cast every creature in your hand for free. As if that wasn’t good enough, however, this card also facilitates some decent card draw before this happens! To make it even better, Last March of the Ents can’t be countered! Thanks to these features combined, Last March of the Ents is a true bomb in Commander, capable of ending games in an instant!
Obviously, while we glossed over it a moment ago, eight mana isn’t an insignificant cost to play. In Commander, however, where fast mana is absolutely everywhere, this card can be played surprisingly early. This turns it from a card that’s practically unplayable in Modern, to a true powerhouse. One that is definitely worth including within the 99 of a green stompy deck.
5 | Sauron, the Dark Lord
Like every card on this list, Sauron, the Dark Lord isn’t part of the accompanying Commander set. That being said, however, they are nevertheless an absolutely fantastic purpose-built Commander card. In fact, they’re arguably the best choice for a Commander deck themed around The Ring.
While they don’t come cheap, Sauron, the Dark Lord allows players to be fully tempted by The Ring incredibly quickly. This ensures that your Ring-bearer will always be a substantial threat that’s rarely off the board. Alongside this, when being tempted by the ring, Sauron, the Dark Lord offers a potentially incredible amount of card draw. If you’re tapped out, Sauron, the Dark can theoretically draw you four cards a turn!
Also worth mentioning with this version of Sauron is their immense Ward cost. Forcing an opponent to sacrifice a Legendary Artifact or Creature, Sauron, the Dark Lord will be an absolute pain to get rid of. This should hopefully mitigate their substantial casting cost, as Commander Tax won’t be so much of an issue.
4 | Delighted Halfling
Since it was a rare card, during pre-sale, Delighted Halfling didn’t quite make this list of the most expensive Tales of Middle-earth cards. Now that the set has launched, however, demand for this card has absolutely skyrocketed. In hindsight, this is absolutely unsurprising. Even before the set was released, Delighted Halfling was regarded as one of the best mana dorks of all time.
Obviously, since their first ability isn’t remarkable at all, we can gloss right over that and look at what’s important. When used to cast legendary spells, not only can Delighted Halfling produce mana of any color, but they also make that spell uncounterable. Thanks to the prevalence of legendary creatures in modern MTG, this makes Delighted Halfling an utterly incredible mana dork.
Costing no more than the classic Llanowar Elves there’s nary a reason not to play Delighted Halfling. As a result, many MTG players have been doing just that in both Commander and even Modern! In both these formats, the incredibly useful counter protection can be a godsend so it’s no wonder they’re so expensive!
3 | Nazgûl
Shockingly, two weeks after release, the third most expensive MTG card from The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth is an uncommon. Even more surprising than that, however, is the fact this card, Nazgûl, could take up five spots in this top ten list! This is thanks to the card having nine almost identical variants which feature unique art.
Alongside the incredibly collectible aspect of Nazgûl, the card itself is actually rather strong. A core piece within the new Wraith Typal decks, Nazgûl can scale to become incredibly powerful threats over time. This is thanks to Nazgûl giving +1/+1 counties to each Wraith you control whenever The Ring Tempts You.
Beyond this board buffing ability being powerful in its own right, Nazgûl has an added, rather unique, ability. Similarly to Seven Dwarves from Throne of Eldraine, Nazgûl allows players to break a format’s deckbuilding rules. Rather than being limited to one Nazgûl in Commander, you can instead have nine in your deck! Not only does this make Nazgûl a consistent threat, but it also enhances their already powerful synergy!
2 | Orcish Bowmasters
While it is a rare card, considering Orcish Bowmasters is arguably the most powerful creature in the entire set, it should be no surprize they’re almost topping this list.
Offering damage to any target whenever an opponent draws a card (provided it’s not the first one during the draw step) Orcish Bowmasters is utterly vicious in Commander. Able to whittle down opponents and even eliminate threats, Orcish Bowmasters is near guaranteed to see cEDH play. Alongside this, plenty of Commander decks will want to run a copy of this card, keeping the demand exceedingly high.
Since Orcish Bowmasters is a rare card, it’s possible the supply will meet demand once the set is released. Even if that does happen, however, Orcish Bowmasters is still likely to hold a spot on this list.
1 | The One Ring
As the defining symbol of The Lord of the Rings franchise, it’s no wonder that MTG players are interested in The One Ring. Beyond just being important iconography, however, this card is also incredibly powerful. Providing card draw which gets better and better each turn, The One Ring is a hugely useful piece of utility.
Considering the strength of a consistent card draw engine, The One Ring unsurprisingly comes with a major catch. This is that each turn, The One Ring will deal damage to you based on the number of Burden Counters it has. Over time, this effect could become rather problematic if you’re unable to gain life to compensate. When combined with effects like Mind Over Matter, The One Ring can even draw your entire deck without any downside!
Thanks to the steady self-damage, The One Ring’s Indestructible can be somewhat of a double-edged sword. When played sensibly, however, this card will be an excellent addition to countless Commander decks. As a result, it should come as no surprise that The One Ring is the most expensive MTG card in The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth.
0 | The One Ring (Again)
Last but not least, we couldn’t resist talking about the one-of-one serialized The One Ring in this list. After all, should this card be sold, it’ll immediately become the most expensive card of all time! Previously, thanks to the infinitesimal odds of finding this card, it seemed like this incredible feat may never happen. Shockingly, however, the one-of-one The One Ring has been found!
Reportedly opened by a forklift-certified Canadian MTG player, the ultra-prized The One Ring has already been graded by PSA. Receiving a less-than-perfect 9 (Mint) grade, this card is definitely worth a whole lot of money. Just how much, however, remains to be seen.
Currently, despite open bounties in excess of $2,000,000, The One Ring has not yet been sold. Considering the amount of money being offered, however, it’s likely only a matter of time before a sale takes place. Until then, however, there’s a slim possibility that the card’s current owner may keep ahold of it. Alternatively, they may even want to throw it into a volcano, just for a bit of thematic fun.