This is the first time that Magic has had two Con-ish events back-to-back. Last weekend, Magic hosted Pro Tour Lord of the Rings in Barcelona and this weekend they made an appearance at Gen Con in Indianapolis.
Even though Magic has been celebrating its 30th anniversary for what seems like forever now, Gen Con actually falls on the actual date. As such, players are getting treated to a preview panel like we’ve never seen before, looking ahead three years into the future. That will be coming out tomorrow, and we’ll be sure to keep you updated on the latest developments.
For now, however, Gen Con is still a Con, so some new goodies are in order. We have two brand-new promotional reprints that are worth some serious cash, and one of them is accessible to everyone! Let’s take a look!
This Lotus Petal Promo reprint is no slouch. Seeing tons of Legacy and Commander play, Lotus Petal allows you to cash in a zero mana artifact for one mana of any color. In faster formats, this can be a godsend, breaking a narrow line between winning or stopping your opponents’ early win attempts.
The card, originally printed in Tempest, actually served some time on the Magic ban list a long time ago. This is thanks to Combo Winter, one of the most infamous metagames that Magic has ever seen. Long story short, combo decks that won in only a few turns were so powerful that players were walking away from the game in droves. After a massive amount of bans, things finally got on track, and Lotus Petal was one of those bans.
Nowadays, Lotus Petal is Restricted in Vintage but otherwise is legal in Legacy, Commander, and Pauper.
Ultimately, Lotus Petal is a desirable card that is not easily accessible. As a result, the card is rather expensive. Of its four printings, the Mystery Booster one is the cheapest, retailing for about $20. Tempest Petals go for around the same price. Past that point, the card has two premium printings that can retail north of $100.
Accessible to Everyone
Generally, con promos like this one are relatively difficult to come by unless you attend the event in person. You’ll commonly see a new promotional card coming out of these cons that goes for $1000 or more as a result. Don’t worry, there is one of those seemingly appearing at Gen Con as well, but this particular copy of Lotus Petal is surprisingly easy to access.
According to this article on the WPN site, every single WPN store is getting sent copies of this Lotus Petal. Players won’t be able to access these until September 22nd, but all they need to do is play an event at the store. That’s it!
Notably, some of these are also being handed out at Gen Con despite September 22nd not passing yet. This promo will also be available at the upcoming MagicCon: Las Vegas.
One Draft or Commander night around late September may get you rewarded with a $20+ Lotus Petal at select locations, while supplies last. Notably, the Petal does appear to have an Etched Foil treatment. That said, if this Petal ends up being incredibly plentiful thanks to this promotion, it could actually temporarily drive the price of Lotus Petals down, which is only a good thing. This is a fantastic promotional offer from Wizards, all things considered.
A New Serialized Merfolk
Of course, this wouldn’t be a MagicCon without the appearance of a new serialized MTG card. Merfolk of the Pearl Trident first came out in Alpha, Magic’s first release. This seems to be the case for all the MTG cards that get this con-exclusive serialized treatment. The treatment includes a new full-art foil treatment with 295 numbered copies in existence.
According to various sources, Merfolk of the Pearl Trident is the fourth of five Secret Lair 30th Anniversary cards. These are all serialized treatments of Alpha cards that have appeared at various cons. Each color is also being represented in these treatments, meaning the last card, likely to appear at MagicCon: Las Vegas coming up, should be a white one.
For reference, Lord of the Pit was recently announced at MagicCon: Barcelona and quickly had offers north of $1000. Shivan Dragon and Giant Growth are two other examples of cards that received this treatment at past events.
That said, there has been a bit of an odd issue surrounding controversial artwork appearing in these Secret Lair products. This connection was also made with the recent Shivan Dragon. Fortunately, the recent additions of Lord of the Pit and Merfolk of the Pearl Trident do not appear to offend.
Instead, the artwork from Dani Pendergast is actually quite beautiful. While Merfolk of the Pearl Trident is a brilliant collector piece for the multitude of MTG Merfolk fans out there, the card doesn’t have a lot of function as a game piece, so don’t worry too much about missing out on this one.
New Playtest Cards!
Like the playtest cards that appeared at MagicCon: Barcelona, Gavin Verhey is also hosting an event at Gen Con that is, more or less, the same thing. These cards offer wacky pieces of unexplored design space for players to experiment with in an unsanctioned environment, which can give potential glimpses into the game’s future.
This card, interestingly, follows up on a criticism I had of the possibility of the Commander Masters Limited rule being featured on new Partner cards. For reference, this refers to the possibility of new Partner Commanders that can Partner with any other monocolored (or colorless) Commander.
Mr. Wiggles, Helpful Butterfly offers an extremely interesting design space. On the one hand, Mr. Wiggles has Partner, but also rewards you for staying within a mono-colored identity. If you do so, Mr. Wiggles ramps you on your first upkeep, allowing you to start with an extra Forest! This is, needless to say, incredibly powerful.
The Commander itself, besides allowing you to Partner with another mono-green Commander with Partner, does not do much else. Thankfully, however, it still opens up some interesting design space. After all, when playing cards like this, you may be included to keep laying mono-colored, rather than branching out.
That being said, it’s worth remembering that Mr. Wiggles, Helpful Butterly is only a playtest card. Due to this, they’re not legal in Commander, or any format for that matter. Should you find a copy of this card, however, you could play it in casual games, so long as you Rule 0 it to be allowed.