On October 30th, 2019, Wizards of the Coast announced Commander Collection: Green. The announcement came about a year away from the product's release on September 4th, 2020. This product will contain eight green cards playable in the Commander format. WOTC gave some hints about the collection such as many of the cards refer to popular legends and card artwork. With this information, along with known product releases in 2020, I will try to predict the eight cards featured in the collection.
Narrowing Card Options
The Commander Collection: Green is a similar product to the Signature Spellbook series. The recently released Chandra: Signature Spellbook contains eight cards related to the Planeswalker. Players can purchase a Chandra: Signature Spellbook for around $20.00. WOTC has historically reprinted cards with a combined market value above the retail price for Signature Spellbooks. Upon the initial announcement of the Chandra: Signature Spellbook, my estimated total market value for all eight cards was $50.00. This equates to a 60% premium over the asking price for the Chandra: Signature Spellbook. Using this information, I will assume that the total market value of the eight cards in Commander Collection: Green is $50.00. WOTC is selling a non-foil and foil version of the Commander Collection: Green. I foresee the foil version's retail price could be double the non-foil version. Using this assumption, I predict the non-foil version retail price is $20.00 and the foil version is $40.00.
I believe there are themes that WOTC may not include in the Commander Collection: Green. Since this product is not themed like Signature Spellbooks, I believe WOTC will exclude green Planeswalkers and any related cards. For example, WOTC may not include Nissa, Vital Force, or cards related to her like Nissa's Renewal. However, cards featuring Nissa in the artwork, such as Splendid Reclamation, could receive new artwork. I also think WOTC may exclude legendary creatures from the collection. Commander Legends seems like a better opportunity to offer non-foil and foil versions of popular green legendary creatures.
1. Beastmaster Ascension
I am predicting Beastmaster Ascension will be in the Commander Collection: Green. The original card artwork depicts a group of tigers being controlled by a shaman or druid. The new artwork featuring Yisan has some similarities with Beast Ascension. Additionally, the card's market value floats around $3.50. Considering Beastmaster Ascension is a top 50 green card according to EDHREC, I believe this is an easy inclusion for WOTC.
2. Seedborn Muse
I believe Seedborn Muse is the card assigned with the artwork featuring an Azusa headpiece. A hint was given that the creature in the artwork is not from Kamigawa. The artwork also features a plant growing from the ground. Seedborn Muse is around a $10.00 card even after a reprint in Commander 2019. In addition, it is a top 50 green card on EDHREC.
3. Eternal Witness
Eternal Witness is a top-five green card on EDHREC. I believe the most played Commander cards in green are easy inclusions in Commander Collection: Green. Even with a Mystery Booster reprinting, Eternal Witness sells for about $4.50. I do not think the Eternal Witness inclusion in Full Sleeves: the Tattoo Pack Secret Lair is a factor for ruling it out.
4. Nature's Lore
The collection would not be complete without at least one ramp spell. With cultivate reprinted in Core 2021, I believe they will include a different ramp spell. A foil printing of Nature's Lore would be exciting for Commander players. Nature's Lore is generic enough that WOTC could tie the artwork to a popular green legendary creature like Ezuri, Renegade Leader, or Titania, Protector of Argoth. With a current market price around $4.00, Nature's Lore would be a great choice for WOTC.
5. Green Sun's Zenith
Green Sun's Zenith is a powerful spell played in many Commander decks. Unfortunately, it has not seen a reprint since Eternal Masters. Green Sun's Zenith is played in over 20,000 decks on EDHREC. While current prices for Green Sun's Zenith are about $16.00, it hovered around $10.00 between October 2019 and April 2020. I believe Green Sun's Zenith is a prime candidate for Commander Collection: Green.
6. Avenger of Zendikar
Avenger of Zendikar is one of the most played green creatures in Commander. The card has doubled in price from around $6.00 to $12.00 since January 2020. The last printing of Avenger of Zendikar was in Commander 2018. It is played in decks featuring popular commanders like Yarok, the Desecrated, Lord Windgrace, and Tatyova, Benthic Druid.
For one green mana, Burgeoning provides a powerful effect in Commander. Burgeoning has seen an increase in price this year from $11.00 to $16.00. The card has not seen a reprint since 2016. I believe Burgeoning is overdue for a reprint due to its inclusion in more than 16,000 decks on EDHREC.
8. Wood Elves
The last printing of Wood Elves was in the first Commander Anthology. Wood Elves is a top 25 green card on EDHREC. It sees a wide range of Commander play thanks to its creature type, casting cost, and enters the battlefield trigger. Priced around $1.50, Wood Elves is a fine choice to round out the collection. A new foil printing would please players as well.
Which cards on this list do you believe will be in Commander Collection: Green? What other cards would you recommend WOTC to include? Feel free to leave a comment below with your predictions.
Competitive EDH (cEDH) is a multiplayer format for the Magic: The Gathering card game. The format consists of building Commander decks that are competitive enough to win in the first few turns of a game. Some decks have the capability of winning on their first turn!
The MTG Reserved List features a list of cards that Wizards of the Coast said they would not reprint in future sets or products. This means that the cards on the Reserved List have a finite print run. Reserved List cards played in cEDH can be very expensive to acquire like The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale and Timetwister. However, there are a few Reserved List cards used in popular cEDH decks that players can purchase for under $5.00.
Abeyance is a Reserved List rare from the Weatherlight set. This instant is featured in lists for the Heliod, Sun-Crowned cEDH deck. Abeyance acts as a second copy of Silence, but less powerful. It is another tool used to help protect combos; especially, in white-based decks. At under $5.00, this card is an inexpensive option for cEDH decks that want more Silence-type effects.
Altar of Bone
Altar of Bone is a Reserved List rare from the Ice Age set. It is a sorcery speed tutor that allows a player to search their deck for a creature. This card is an inferior version of Eladamri's Call. However, it does provide cEDH decks such as Atla Palani, Nest Tender with additional tutor effects.
Carnival of Souls
Carnival of Souls is a Reserved List rare from Urza's Destiny. This enchantment sees some play in the Yawgmoth, Thran Physician cEDH deck. It can be used for mana acceleration or as a combo piece. It can be used for mana acceleration and as a combo piece. While a niche card, Carnival of Souls is an inexpensive option for cEDH.
This list is short due in part to the nature of the Reserved List. Since Reserved List cards are not reprinted; increased demand for a card can drive prices past $5.00. Also, the rise in popularity of cEDH has push prices higher for Reserved List cards like Gilded Drake and Transmute Artifact. Abeyance, Altar of Bone, and Carnival of Souls are inexpensive Reserved List cards that can make an impactful splash in cEDH.
*The information in this article is of my own knowledge and opinion. It is meant for informational purposes only.*
Magic: The Gathering's Ikoria Lair of Behemoths brought new mechanics to the game. The companion mechanic has turned out to be powerful across constructed formats. Yorion, Sky Nomad is one of ten new companion creatures from Ikoria. As a companion, Yorion requires players to include at least twenty additional cards in their starting deck. Increasing a deck's card count can inadvertently increase the price to build it. Running a 95 card decklist is a 26.7% increase over a normal 75 card decklist. However, a deck's price jump may not always align with the card count increase.
Information for competitive Standard and Pioneer decks featuring Yorion as a companion were collected from MTGGoldfish. Similar competitive archetype decks before Ikoria's release were collected as a comparison. The data referenced in this article can be found here.
Yorion, Sky Nomad in Standard
There are a handful of competitive decks in Standard running Yorion as of May 18th, 2020. The decklists I pulled for comparing costs were Bant Yorion, Jeskai Lukka, Esper Control, 5-Color Yorion, and UW Control. While the overall cost of each deck is one sample and not an average, I believe they are good representations. The average cost for Standard Yorion decks was $421.08. Bant Yorion was the most expensive at $586.37 and UW Control was the least expensive at $308.20.
The decklists pulled from pre-Ikoria were Bant Ramp, Esper Control, Jeskai Fires, UW Control, and 4-Color Superfriends. The average cost for the pre-Ikoria decks was $381.96. Bant Ramp had a high price of $604.77 while UW Control was the least expensive again at $306.14.
The average cost difference between running decks with and without a companion is $39.12. Adding 20 cards to a deck at $1.96 each equals the cost increase of $39.12. This amount is a 10.2% increase over the typical 75 card deck and sideboard. Going one step further, the average price per card with Yorion as a companion was $4.43. The average price per card in a normal deck was $5.09. Essentially, one should expect to spend around $40 more on a Standard deck with Yorion as a companion.
Yorion, Sky Nomad in Pioneer
The competitive Pioneer decks I found were UW Devotion, UW Yorion, Niv to Light Yorion, and Superfriends. Since Superfriends decklists had a wide array of costs, I use two of them as part of the five overall deck choices. The average cost of the Pioneer companion decks was $554.16. Niv to Light Yorion had the highest price at $812.95. Unless a player already owns the cards, it appears fiscally unreasonable to build a Pioneer deck at that price point. The least expensive option among the decks was UW Control at $400.95.
Similar Pioneer archetype decks were played before Ikoria. One exception is that white devotion decks evolved by adding a second color. The average price for Pioneer decks was $464.50. Niv to Light was the highest cost at $632.11. UW Control was also the lowest cost at $389.13. UW Control with and without Yorion was almost the same in cost.
The average cost difference for decks with and without companions was $89.55. This is a 19.3% increase over the average Pioneer deck without Yorion as a companion. The average price per card in a 95 count deck was $5.83. For 75 count decks, the average price per card was $6.19. Players should expect to spend around $90 more to build a Pioneer deck with Yorion as a companion.
Cards Driving Deckbuilding Price Increases
Adding 20 cards to competitive Yorion companion decks is not a small expense. The additional cards average about $2.00 each for Standard and $4.50 each for Pioneer. Players are not always adding inexpensive filler cards to meet Yorion's requirements.
One of the main cost drivers is the necessary increase in land count. Some Yorion decks added around 40% more land cards. Standard Esper Control increased the Fable Passage count from two to four. This was an expensive, yet necessary change for mana fixing. Devotion decks in Pioneer added shock lands to support a second color.
Another reason for the increase in cost comes from different deck strategies. UW Devotion in Pioneer replaces Planeswalkers with creatures. Jeskai Lukka swaps Agent of Treachery and Lukka, Coppercoat Outcast for Sphinx of Foresight, and Cavalier of Flame. These changes raise the price of the deck before adding more lands.
The decklists used in this analysis are a small sample of competitive archetypes. There will be different results when mixing and matching other decklists. Bant in Standard had a price decrease when comparing decklists with and without Yorion. Some decks had minimal price increases with Yorion, while others skyrocketed. One clear cost increase is adding more mana fixing lands to a three or more color deck. There are multiple circumstances where prices can swing up or even down with Yorion as a companion. However, I believe players should anticipate a price increase merely by adding twenty more cards to a deck. Players also should anticipate spending more on non-Standard constructed formats due to higher average costs per card.
Magic: The Gathering's Commander (also known as EDH) format has grown in popularity over the past few years. Wizards of the Coast has announced multiple Commander cards and products releasing in 2020. While many players are focused on the new preconstructed Commander 2020 decks, there are still opportunities to acquire underpriced cards. Here are my current underpriced Commander cards with a potential to increase in value. Images have been updated May 25th, 2020 to show current pricing.
Journey to Eternity
A flip card from Rivals of Ixalan, Journey to Eternity is listed in over 9,000 decks on EDHREC. The card had a 2% spread on MTGGoldfish during the first week of May, 2020. It is typically more challenging for WOTC to reprint double-sided cards. Journey to Eternity slots well in popular commanders like Meren of Clan Nel Toth and Muldrotha, the Gravetide. I believe the current pricing (under $5.00) for this card is undervalued relative to its popularity in Commander.
Hostage Taker was a powerful card during its time in Standard. It is listed in almost 7,000 decks according to EDHREC. Hostage Taker had a spread of 8% on MTGGoldfish the first week of May, 2020. The color combination, creature type, and enters the battlefield (ETB) trigger make Hostage Taker a synergistic inclusion. Popular Commander decks for Hostage Taker include Yarok, the Desecrated, Admiral Beckett Brass, Aminatou, the Fateshifter, and Muldrotha. the Gravetide. Hostage Taker should be closer to $5.00 in price rather than $3.00.
Vizier of the Menagerie
It is easy to see the appeal of playing Vizier of the Menagerie in green creature decks. Two of Vizer's three abilities are also found on the Ikoria Planeswalker, Vivien, Monsters' Advocate. Playing both together in a Commander deck seems appealing. Vizier of the Menagerie had a spread of 5% on MTGGoldfish during the first week of May, 2020. The card is played in about 6,500 decks according to EDHREC. It is popular in Commander decks featuring Animar, Soul of Elements, Nikya of the Old Ways, and Chulane, Teller of Tales. I believe Vizier of the Menagerie has the potential to increase from $5.00 to the $7.00 - $9.00 range.
Sitting at a price around $4.00 the first week of May, 2020, Noxious Gearhulk is primed for a price increase. This mythic from Kaladesh sees play in over 9,000 decks on EDHREC. Theros: Beyond Death Promo Packs did increase the supply of available copies. However, the MTGGoldfish spread pictured at 0% is a possible indicator that Noxious Gearhulk's price is undervalued. Noxious Gearhulk has a great ETB trigger, synergizes with artifacts, and sees play in a multitude of Commander decks. It is another card that should be priced around the $7.00 - $9.00 range.
WOTC has printed quite a few "you win the game" cards in recent Standard sets. Such cards include Thassa's Oracle, Jace, Wielder of Mysteries, and Simic Ascendancy. Mechanized Production had a negative spread on MTGGoldfish the first week of May, 2020. Negative spreads can lead to arbitrage opportunities. The card is played in about 5,000 decks listed on EDHREC. It synergies well with Commanders that care about artifacts like Brudiclad, Telchor Engineer and Breya, Etherium Shaper. Brainstorm Brewery recently posted a video about using Mechanized Production as a replacement for Copy Artifact. The potential for Mechanized Production rises as WOTC continues to make new cards like Mirrormade, Echo Storm, and Masterful Replication. I can see Mechanized Production moving up to its old high of $6.94.
*The information in this article is of my own knowledge and opinion. It is meant for informational purposes only.*