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By: one million words, Pete Jahn
May 19 2017 12:00pm
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State of the Program for May 19th 2017
 
In the News
G3RRYT Wins PT Amonkhet: The Pro Tour is in the books. Coverage is here. The Top 8 decklists are here. A great article on archetypes (and a lot of other data) is here.   
 
Challenge Events in Every Format Every Weekend: Wizards has announced that they will have Challenge tournaments every weekend. All of these will cost 25 Tix / 250 pp, and pay out in treasure chests and play points. The events will be staggered.
 
·       Modern – 8am Saturday
·       Vintage – 10am Saturday
·       1v1 Commander – noon Saturday
·       Legacy – 8am Sunday
·       Pauper – 10am Sunday
 
All times are Pacific. Prizes mean a profit for the Top 16 finishers, and those finishing 17-32 get their entry fee back.   Details here.
 
Redemption Deadlines Approaching: If you like to redeem product, remember that the redemption window for Khans of Tarkir and Fate Reforged, as well as Kaladesh and Aether Revolt, are fast approaching. Wizards changed the redemption windows last year, so Kaladesh and Aether Revolt will disappear quickly. Older sets, including Dragons of Tarkir, Magic Origins, Battle for Zendikar and Oath of the Gatewatch are redeemable until this November.  Redemption for Shadows over Innistrad and Eldritch Moon ends in April of next year.
 
The Timeline
This is a list of things we have been promised, or we just want to see coming back.   Another good source for dates and times is the calendar and the weekly blog, while the best source for known bugs is the bug blog which appears sporadically on MTGO.com. Most of the major upcoming events we know of are listed.  Not listed, but important: Wizards offers either one or two online PTQs each weekend, with qualifiers running the three days prior to the PTQ.
 
Upcoming Events
Timing
No Downtime
May 31st, June 7th  
Extended Downtime
May 24th , June 28th
Current Leagues End
July 10, 2017
Hour of Devastation release
July, 2017
Ixalan release
September 25, 2017
Commander 2017 details here.
November 2017 on MTGO
Next B&R Announcement
June 14, 2017
KLD and AER Redemption Ends
June 7, 2017 (yes, 3 weeks from now)
KTK and FRF Redemption Ends
May 31, 2017
DTK, ORI, BFZ & OGW Redemption Ends
November 2, 2017
SOI and EMN Redemption Closes
April 28, 2018
 
Flashback, Throwback Standard and CUBE for 2017
Wizards will be offering either a flashback draft league, a flashback Standard gauntlet, a CUBE league or prerelease / Release events each week.   Here’s the schedule so far.
 
Flashback and Such Rotation
Begins
Ends
Combo Winter
May 17th
May 24th
Mirrodin
May 24th
May 31st
 
The new Flashback Leagues are still draft, and still you-keep-the-cards. They are 12 TIX / product plus 2 TIX / 120 Play Points. However, they are no longer single elimination. Now you play until you have three wins or two losses. Prizes are 150 play points for three wins and 70 Play points for 2 wins. The leagues run one week.
 
The Throwback Standard Gauntlet events provide a random choice of prebuilt decks from a past standard environment. These will function like the Pro Tour Gauntlets – you won’t need to own the cards. The entry fee is 10 TIX or 100 Play Points. Prizes are in Play Points: 150 for 3-0, 100 for 2-1, 40 for 1-2 and 10 play points as a bad beats award. 
 
Opinion Section:  Not this Week
I had written a long piece on Pro Tour coverage. Some parts I liked: Frank Karsten’s article on the Day Two Metagame, for example.  Some parts I hated, like the dull PowerPoint slideshows. 
 
Reading it through again during my edits, I realized I wasn’t saying anything particularly profound or different from a dozen other commenters, and I didn’t have any solutions. So I cut it. I’ll just leave the TL:DR: It’s way better than it was, but it could be so much better.
 
That pretty much covers it – I just stretched it out to 2k words.
 
Cutting Edge Tech
Standard: The Pro Tour top 8 was not dominated by Mardu Vehicles. Instead, the decks to beat were Marvel Aetherworks, Zombies (both mono-black and BW) and one lone GB Energy made the top 8. Since I covered a mono-black Zombies deck last week, I’ll feature an Aetherworks deck with the hot new tech – big Chandra. The other Aetherworks build to pay attention to is the spell heavy version running Censor and Torrential Gearhulk.
Chandra’s Aetherworks
Martin Mulller, Top 4, Pro Tour Amonkhet - 75 Cards Total
Creature
4 Servant of the Conduit
4 Whirler Virtuoso
4 Rogue Refiner
3 Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger
15 cards

Instant
4 Harnessed Lightning
4 cards

Sorcery
4 Attune with Aether
4 cards
Artifact
4 Woodweaver's Puzzleknot
4 Aetherworks Marvel
8 cards

Enchantment
2 Aether Meltdown
2 cards

Planeswalker
4 Chandra, Flamecaller
4 cards
Land
4 Aether Hub
1 Botanical Sanctum
6 Forest
2 Mountain
1 Island
1 Sheltered Thicket
4 Spirebluff Canal
2 Game Trail
2 Lumbering Falls
22 cards
 


Sideboard
2 Sphinx of the Final Word
3 Negate
2 Sweltering Suns
4 Tireless Tracker
2 Manglehorn
2 Confiscation Coup
15 cards
Modern: The league results are interesting this week.   A wide variety of decks and archetypes, at least in the featured lists. The most interesting is a mash-up of UB Delver and Death's Shadow decks. 
 
1V1 Commander: The format is happening, and we have more 5-0 decklists. This week’s development is that some of the partnering Commanders have made appearances. I won’t list the decks, but here are the Commanders, in order:
 
·       Kraum, Ludevic's Opus  and  Vial Smasher the Fierce
·       Thrasios, Triton Hero and  Vial Smasher the Fierce
·       Azusa, Lost but Seeking (two copies)
·       The Gitrog Monster
·       Baral, Chief of Compliance
·       Titania, Protector of Argoth
·       Tasigur, the Golden Fang (two copies)
·       Ruhan of the Formori
 
Legacy: Combo decks are making a comeback, since Miracles is no longer tromping them down.  
 
 
Vintage: Amonkhet cards are sneaking into Vintage. Harsh Mentor deals damage to anyone that activates a non-mana ability of a land, artifact or creature. Last week we saw a version with four copies go undefeated. This week the deck has evolved a bit. 
 
 
 
Card Prices
Note: all my prices come from the fine folks at MTGOTraders.com. These are retail prices, and generally the price of the lowest priced, actively traded version. (Prices for some rare promo versions are not updated when not in stock, so I skip those.)   You can get these cards at MTGOTraders.com web store, or from their bots: MTGOTradersBot(#) (they have bots 1-10), CardCaddy and CardWareHouse, or sell cards to MTGOTradersBuyBot(#) (they have buybots 1-4). I have bought cards from MTGOTraders for over a decade now, and have never been overcharged or disappointed.
 
Standard staples: Standard prices were down this week. The Pro Tour did bump the price of Aetherworks Marvel and Chandra Flamecaller, but neither is high enough to make the table.    
 

Standard Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$8.06
$11.82
($3.76)
-32%
$14.66
$17.64
($2.98)
-17%
$7.53
$10.05
($2.52)
-25%
$22.60
$22.39
$0.21
1%
$6.05
$9.45
($3.40)
-36%
$11.73
$18.39
($6.66)
-36%
$16.40
$19.07
($2.67)
-14%
$4.41
$6.94
($2.53)
-36%
$14.44
$21.81
($7.37)
-34%
$11.50
$12.46
($0.96)
-8%
$41.55
$34.93
$6.62
19%
$10.14
$16.73
($6.59)
-39%
$3.22
$4.75
($1.53)
-32%
$5.89
$10.56
($4.67)
-44%
$12.20
$13.63
($1.43)
-10%
$3.95
$5.60
($1.65)
-29%
$7.54
$8.39
($0.85)
-10%
$25.36
$22.22
$3.14
14%
$30.22
$24.01
$6.21
26%
$8.43
$10.45
($2.02)
-19%
$7.41
$8.90
($1.49)
-17%

Modern staples:  Modern prices generally rebounded. Most of the cards that fell after being reprinted in MM17 have come back to close to their pre MM17 levels.  
 

Modern Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$31.41
$40.05
($8.64)
-22%
$34.87
$35.03
($0.16)
0%
$18.87
$18.61
$0.26
1%
$20.33
$19.09
$1.24
6%
$37.94
$39.39
($1.45)
-4%
$27.39
$25.58
$1.81
7%
$38.19
$33.88
$4.31
13%
$36.87
$36.18
$0.69
2%
$26.22
$26.36
($0.14)
-1%
$25.63
$25.60
$0.03
0%
$30.51
$24.50
$6.01
25%
$26.90
$27.98
($1.08)
-4%
$14.26
$17.45
($3.19)
-18%
$67.96
$63.17
$4.79
8%
$43.41
$37.25
$6.16
17%
$30.94
$28.32
$2.62
9%
$22.60
$21.04
$1.56
7%
$21.30
$20.81
$0.49
2%
$24.36
$20.39
$3.97
19%
$27.25
$26.31
$0.94
4%
$34.77
$34.16
$0.61
2%
$18.30
$17.46
$0.84
5%

Legacy and Vintage: Few changes this week. Legacy is, overall, up a bit. Vintage is down.
  

Legacy / Vintage Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$20.66
$24.83
($4.17)
-17%
$66.41
$66.82
($0.41)
-1%
$26.04
$25.11
$0.93
4%
$24.96
$25.24
($0.28)
-1%
$51.29
$48.90
$2.39
5%
$43.90
$47.33
($3.43)
-7%
$37.40
$34.31
$3.09
9%
$37.05
$37.49
($0.44)
-1%
$42.33
$50.41
($8.08)
-16%
$21.82
$21.35
$0.47
2%
$42.15
$43.27
($1.12)
-3%
$31.83
$32.25
($0.42)
-1%
$36.07
$35.21
$0.86
2%
$26.35
$29.32
($2.97)
-10%
$156.79
$157.94
($1.15)
-1%
$52.87
$53.19
($0.32)
-1%
$69.42
$62.03
$7.39
12%
$37.18
$36.46
$0.72
2%
$23.13
$21.90
$1.23
6%
$55.02
$52.67
$2.35
4%

Set Redemption: You can redeem complete sets on MTGO. You need to purchase a redemption voucher from the store for $25. During the next downtime, Wizards removes a complete set from your account and sends you the same set in paper.  Treasure Chests and the current booster packs are here because they don’t really fit anywhere else.   Remember that Kaladesh and Eldritch Moon will go off redemption soon, even before the older sets. I’m not sure if I will keep the on the list once they are off redemption. I might, just because information on how Standard-legal sets are doing is interesting. 
 

Complete Set
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
Aether Revolt
$75.14
$76.83
($1.69)
-2%
Amonkhet
$75.37
$86.26
($10.89)
-13%
Battle for Zendikar
$79.54
$78.57
$0.97
1%
Eldritch Moon
$97.46
$106.80
($9.34)
-9%
Kaladesh
$110.29
$108.17
$2.12
2%
Oath of the Gatewatch
$85.64
$113.18
($27.54)
-24%
Shadows over Innistrad
$69.80
$83.56
($13.76)
-16%
Treasure Chest
$2.44
$2.48
($0.04)
-2%
Amonkhet Booster
$3.45
$3.49
($0.04)
-1%

 
The Good Stuff
The following is a list of all the non-promo, non-foil cards on MTGO that retail for more than $25 per card. These are the big ticket items in the world of MTGO. As always, Rishadan Port rules the roost. Black Lotus has fallen – it now trails Liliana and True-Name Nemesis. 
 

Name
Set
Rarity
 Price
Rishadan Port
 MM
Rare
 $ 156.79
True-Name Nemesis
 C13
Rare
 $   71.32
Liliana of the Veil
 MM3
Mythic Rare
 $   71.31
True-Name Nemesis
 PZ1
Mythic Rare
 $   69.42
Liliana of the Veil
 ISD
Mythic Rare
 $   67.96
Black Lotus
 VMA
Bonus
 $   66.41
Wasteland
 TE
Uncommon
 $   56.66
Wasteland
 EMA
Rare
 $   55.11
Wasteland
 EXP
Mythic Rare
 $   55.07
Wasteland
 TPR
Rare
 $   55.02
Show and Tell
 UZ
Rare
 $   52.87
Exploration
 UZ
Rare
 $   51.29
Mox Opal
 MS2
Bonus
 $   45.20
Force of Will
 MED
Rare
 $   44.83
Food Chain
 MM
Rare
 $   43.90
Chalice of the Void
 MS2
Bonus
 $   43.84
Mox Opal
 MM2
Mythic Rare
 $   43.73
Mox Opal
 SOM
Mythic Rare
 $   43.41
Infernal Tutor
 DIS
Rare
 $   42.33
Leovold, Emissary of Trest
 PZ2
Mythic Rare
 $   42.15
Force of Will
 MS3
Special
 $   41.93
Liliana, the Last Hope
 EMN
Mythic Rare
 $   41.55
Ancestral Vision
 DD2
Rare
 $   39.83
Engineered Explosives
 5DN
Rare
 $   38.78
Ensnaring Bridge
 7E
Rare
 $   38.75
Engineered Explosives
 MS2
Bonus
 $   38.58
Chalice of the Void
 MMA
Rare
 $   38.31
Force of Will
 EMA
Mythic Rare
 $   38.19
Engineered Explosives
 MMA
Rare
 $   38.19
Chalice of the Void
 MRD
Rare
 $   37.94
Ensnaring Bridge
 8ED
Rare
 $   37.47
Unmask
 V16
Mythic Rare
 $   37.43
Force of Will
 VMA
Rare
 $   37.40
Ensnaring Bridge
 MS2
Bonus
 $   37.35
Unmask
 MM
Rare
 $   37.18
Gaea's Cradle
 UZ
Rare
 $   37.05
Ensnaring Bridge
 ST
Rare
 $   36.87
Tarmogoyf
 MMA
Mythic Rare
 $   36.46
Tarmogoyf
 FUT
Rare
 $   36.31
Misdirection
 MM
Rare
 $   36.07
Horizon Canopy
 EXP
Mythic Rare
 $   35.23
Tarmogoyf
 MM3
Mythic Rare
 $   35.12
Batterskull
 NPH
Mythic Rare
 $   34.87
Tarmogoyf
 MM2
Mythic Rare
 $   34.77
Mystic Confluence
 PZ1
Rare
 $   31.89
Meren of Clan Nel Toth
 PZ1
Rare
 $   31.83
Ancestral Vision
 TSP
Rare
 $   31.41
Mishra's Bauble
 CSP
Uncommon
 $   30.94
Horizon Canopy
 FUT
Rare
 $   30.51
Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger
 BFZ
Mythic Rare
 $   30.22
Scalding Tarn
 EXP
Mythic Rare
 $   29.96
Grim Monolith
 UL
Rare
 $   29.64
Karn Liberated
 NPH
Mythic Rare
 $   28.43
City of Traitors
 TPR
Rare
 $   28.00
City of Traitors
 EX
Rare
 $   27.66
Surgical Extraction
 NPH
Rare
 $   27.54
Eidolon of the Great Revel
 JOU
Rare
 $   27.39
Mox Diamond
 ST
Rare
 $   27.32
Surgical Extraction
 MM2
Rare
 $   27.25
Fulminator Mage
 SHM
Rare
 $   27.01
Karn Liberated
 MM2
Mythic Rare
 $   26.90
Gorilla Shaman
 ALL
Common
 $   26.86
Mox Diamond
 TPR
Mythic Rare
 $   26.47
Containment Priest
 MS3
Special
 $   26.37
Mox Sapphire
 VMA
Bonus
 $   26.35
Containment Priest
 PZ1
Rare
 $   26.32
Fulminator Mage
 MM2
Rare
 $   26.22
Containment Priest
 C14
Rare
 $   26.04
Grove of the Burnwillows
 FUT
Rare
 $   25.84
Grove of the Burnwillows
 V12
Mythic Rare
 $   25.63
Torrential Gearhulk
 KLD
Mythic Rare
 $   25.36

 
The big number is the retail price of a playset (4 copies) of every card available on MTGO. Assuming you bought the least expensive versions available, the cost of owning a playset of every card on MTGO is approximately $ 24,885. That is down a bit ($60) from last week.
 
Weekly Highlights
I ran a sealed PPTQ last weekend. Speaking as a judge, I love this format. Amonkhet limited is fast, so rounds often end early. One round finished 10 minutes early. As a judge, I love that. As a player, I am not quite as happy, but as a judge I would much rather have fast rounds. 
 
PRJ
 
“One Million Words” on MTGO
 
 
This series is an ongoing tribute to Erik “Hamtastic” Friborg.
 
HammyBot Super Sale: HammyBot was set up to sell off Erik Friborg’s collection, with all proceeds going to his wife and son. So far, HammyBot has raised over $8,000, but there are a lot of cards left in the collection. Those cards are being sold at MTGOTrader’s Buy Price.  
 
 

4 Comments

re by Hearts at Tue, 05/23/2017 - 01:24
Hearts's picture

We must look for the right things to say about mtg and wotc.

May I ask: What is the by MichelleWong at Tue, 05/23/2017 - 03:43
MichelleWong's picture
5

May I ask: What is the attraction to the Challenge events? Anyone can help me understand? Thanks.

I liked a "higher stake" by JXClaytor at Tue, 05/23/2017 - 04:21
JXClaytor's picture

I liked a "higher stake" event that mirrors paper play. The challenges do that for me.

I guess the feeling about by stsung at Tue, 05/23/2017 - 05:12
stsung's picture

I guess the feeling about this comes from paper play. I loved to participate in bigger events with higher prizes (not that prizes would be that relevant to me). Being able to play 7+ rounds of Swiss was always a great way to gain experience and have some fun. I found those events more enjoyable than smaller events. That's also why I preferred old PTQs for example. Going to an event with 20 people several days a week does not really make sense to me, but going to a 80+ event each week does for me.

Not really sure why I was always drawn to such events though. More people, more fun?