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By: romellos, A. Atasoy
Jan 08 2015 1:00pm
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    Hello everyone. Here I'm with a new financial review article that will cover the first week spoilers of the Fate Reforged set. I will go through every spoiled Rare and Mythic so far and review them based on their impact potentials to the Standard, Modern and Eternal formats.

Today, all of my card evaluations will be buying suggestions as always, mostly for the budget players or for the ones who started to play Mtgo recently with a small collection. My main aim with these reviews is to find and invest in the right cards that will matter and multiply their investment values during the next Standard season. And all of my price information will directly come from MtgoTraders.

The Khans of Tarkir was a well balanced set, where we can easily see lots of powerful cards at every rarity range. At Common range, we got; Treasure Cruise, Disdainful Stroke or refuge lands. At Uncommon rarity; Monastery Swiftspear, Seeker of the Way, Murderous Cut, Charms and Wedge tap lands. At Rare range; Onslaught fetchlands, Siege Rhino, Dig Through Time, Jeskai Ascendancy... And good Mythic Rares like; Sorin, Solemn Visitor, Wingmate Roc, Sarkhan, the Dragonspeaker, Sidisi, Brood Tyrant, Anafenza, the Foremost or Clever Impersonator...

But the first week spoilers of Fate Reforged didn't give me any slight impression that this will be a balanced set at all. All I see is lots of powerful Mythic cards and very few rares that may or may not impact to the current metas. I hope, I will be wrong with the second week spoilers, otherwise this will turn into a treasure hunt.

Ladies and gentlemen, let's start to our reviews without losing any more seconds...

Ugin, the Spirit Dragon  Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker

Ugin, the Spirit Dragon is the second existing Dragon Planeswalker card and like his nemesis he is at eight CMC range. At first, we are naturally comparing Ugin, the Spirit Dragon with Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker, but he is actually more like Karn Liberated. Colorless CMC will always matter, when there are various ways to accelerate or multiply mana efficiency with Tron or Locus lands and artifact support. Yes, eight CMC requirement is huge, but not out of question in specialized decks.

Now, let's evaluate Ugin's abilities. His first ability is actually his very well known trademark; Ghostfire, which is very handy as a spot control factor. His second ability is a board sweeper for all colored permanents with X or less CMC. Technically, Ugin can exile any colored permanent with CMC seven or less for eight mana with an immediate impact as All Is Dust. Most of the times, that X will be mostly at five or six CMC range, which will be enough to stabilize the board. Currently the only exception is Hornet Queen.

Ugin's ultimate is also very flashy as a reverse one to Bolas' ultimate. With an empty board, we can easily reach to +11 loyalty points within three turns and that is remarkable. As wrapping up, all the three abilities of Ugin, the Spirit Dragon are strong and they have the potential to impact to the game in many ways.

It is very tricky trying to financially evaluate Ugin, the Spirit Dragon. Because he will definitely see some play in Modern, Commander and maybe in Legacy formats. But the defining point will be, whether Ugin, the Spirit Dragon will be a relevant factor in Standard or not. Currently, I can only think Ugin within the UB or UW colored Control decks. My price estimation for Ugin will start as a 20-25 tix card in the short term and slowly may settle at 8-12 tix range within six months, if everything goes same. Evaluating Planeswalker's financial value is always tricky as there are lots of different cogs turning around to different directions in several formats.

Daghatar the Adamant  Dragonscale General

Daghatar the Adamant is our first card from the past Khans cycle. But unlike Anafenza, the Foremost, Daghatar the Adamant is a quite mediocre legendary card as the Khan of Abzan that won't see any serious play, except in limited and Commander formats. His four CMC is at bottleneck range to compete against other superstars of Standard and his hybrid mana costed ability is over costed just to move a +1/+1 counter from any creature. His fate is already sealed as a bulk card. The final verdict: 0.05 tix  

Dragonscale General is another limited bomb that won't impact to Standard format. Recently, we have received a good amount of Warrior subtype cards with KtK that will be enough to build tribal themed Warrior decks for Legacy Tribal Wars or Commander formats. Otherwise Dragonscale General will be a dead card. The final verdict: 0.05 tix

Soulfire Grand Master  Seeker of the Way

Soulfire Grand Master is clearly one of the best cards of Fate Reforged that will highly impact to the Standard meta immediately together with Monastery Mentor. A lifelink addition to the Instant & Sorcery spells we cast is a very unique and powerful element that will matter during the course of the game together with her hybrid costed ability. Soulfire Grand Master is indeed one of the kill on sight creatures that has to answered before she starts to turn the tide.

Currently, it seems that Soulfire Grand Master will be a good addition to the Jeskai Burn type decks. But this also puts her into a spot, where she has to compete with Seeker of the Way at two CMC range. Both of them may be at two CMC range, but their playing styles are different. Seeker of the Way is more tempo oriented, where we don't just depend on him. On the contrary, Soulfire Grand Master game plan is more control based where we don't usually cast her during turn two or until we are ready to fire our Burn spells.

I'm also eagerly looking forward to test Soulfire Grand Master in a Modern R/Wx Burn deck, together with Eidolon of the Great Revel. This way we can compensate our life total with the lifelink bonus to all those cheap burn spells.

The financial value of Soulfire Grand Master will absolutely depend on how much play she will see in Standard. I guess it will start over +20 tix and will wander around 10-15 tix range during the first month. But what will happen after that is up to meta.  

Monastery Mentor  Young Pyromancer

During last two-three months, we all saw how broken Young Pyromancer can be within the Delver shell with cheap spells. And in that regard, Monastery Mentor is presenting the same type of brokenness with prowess improvement to himself and all the Monk tokens he brings. His power level is obvious, but let's evaluate his potential contributions to the existing Standard decks.

In the current Standard environment, we got four other creatures at three CMC range that can summon tokens; Brimaz, King of Oreskos, Goblin Rabblemaster, Hornet Nest, and Chasm Skulker. Two of these are well established in many decks. So, from the first minute Monastery Mentor has to compete at least with Goblin Rabblemaster or Brimaz, King of Oreskos to take a spot at three CMC range.

As a plus point, the only one W colored mana at his CMC gives Monastery Mentor an advantage over Brimaz, King of Oreskos. And Monastery Mentor is a much better choice for a Jeskai Token deck with the Jeskai Ascendancy combo. He can also easily see play within Jeskai Burn or Mardu decks.

What I said about the financial review of Soulfire Grand Master is also generally viable for Monastery Mentor. But it seems Monastery Mentor will be more robust than the Soulfire Grand Master as Monastery Mentor is not just limited with the Burn path and he has much wider application for many colored decks. Also, who knows what will happen next year after Goblin Rabblemaster or Brimaz, King of Oreskos rotates out.

There are different cycles in Fate Reforged set. And the Siege cycle is maybe the most distinguished one among them with its unique touch for different situations. The siege enchantments are basically a Khans & Dragons themed cycle where we have to choose between two modal options.

In my opinion, Citadel Siege is the weakest one among the rest Siege cards. Its Khans option is powerful, but fits mostly for the Limited formats. And Dragons option is just so weak to utilize in Control type decks. We already saw Martial Law with a similar approach and it never saw any real play in control decks. This card will be a bulk in no time.

Monastery Siege

On the other hand, Monastery Siege is the best one in this cycle. Each of the modal options are so relevant for different type of strategies. The Dragons option is a pure gold in Standard, Modern and Legacy formats as a sideboard option against Burn or discarding. Get your Monastery Siege, you will find many uses for it during the following years. I don't expect to see Monastery Siege as a bulk card, but it won't be also more than 1 tix range. I guess, it will settle down at the 0.5-1 tix range. 

Shu Yun, the Silent Tempest  Azami, Lady of Scrolls

Shu Yun, the Silent Tempest really reminds me Kamigawa more than Tarkir, or maybe it's just me. Regardless of that Shu Yun, the Silent Tempest is a quite strong Jeskai Khan with prowess and double strike bonus to any creature. His three CMC is aggressive with only a single Blue mana requirement, which may open a door to see some rogue play in Jeskai Burn decks ? Who knows. But, generally I don't expect to see him with a price more than 0.25 tix. And in time, Shu Yun will probably hit to the 0.05 tix bottom.   

Temporal Trespass 

Temporal Trepass is a powerful spell on its own, that makes us dream about a Time Walk for three CMC. But that is a different story in Standard full of delve spells & creatures. Especially, there is just no point playing with Temporal Trepass, while we can utilize Dig Through Time or Treasure Cruise for better results. Also triple blue mana requirement is so much for many decks to cover. I guess, Temporal Trepass will share the same fate as Empty the Pits did and become a bulk mythic with price range 0.75-1 tix.

Jeskai Infiltrator  Sage-Eye Avengers 

Jeskai Infiltrator and Sage-Eye Avengers are obviously tailored for the Limited formats. While Supplant Form is relevant in Limited formats like the rest. But it also has a spark to find a place in the Commander format. No matter what, they will all end as 0.05 tix bulk rare cards.

Crux of Fate  Perilous Vault

Crux of Fate is an interesting board sweeper with its modal options. The current UB Control decks need a global destroy effect that they can immediately use during the turn four or turn five, instead of Perilous Vault. And in that regard Crux of Fate is very promising to close that gap. But, we still don't know whether there will be relevant any new Dragons, that may evade Crux of Fate, besides Stormbreath Dragon. There are some uncertainties in the air, this will probably a 0.60-1 tix card, but with some wrong meta turns, it can easily see the bottom 0.05-0.25 tix levels.

Palace Siege

Palace Siege is a great card at Limited and amazing at Commander, where we play against two or three opponents. Besides that, I don't expect to see Palace Siege in any Standard decks. Maybe some rogue UB Control decks may try it for its Dragon option, but nothing serious. A 0.05 tix bulk rare.

Archfiend of Depravity  Bloodgift Demon  Indulgent Tormentor

Archfiend of Depravity is a powerful Demon card without any downsides. Limiting our opponent with a two creature cap can be a very destructive, especially against Whip or token decks. But, there are better options that we can utilize at five CMC range rather that Archfiend of Depravity. It seems this demon will mostly share the same fate as its kin; Bloodgift Demon or Indulgent Tormentor. Mostly a 0-05-0.10 tix card, at least for this Standard season. And don't forget that Desecration Demon was also a 0.05 tix card during its first year.

Soulflayer  Cairn Wanderer

Soulflayer is an updated Cairn Wanderer with the Delve theme with so many fancy possibilities. Yet, I don't think Soulflayer will truly matter when there are much better options to see serious of play in Standard. Soulflayer is a good casual card and that is all about it.

  Hellrider  Butcher of the Horde

Brutal Hordechief is our improved Hellrider variant with its trigger to drain & gain one life for each attacking creature we control. And that's not all, we can also choose how defending creatures block with its hybrid colored ability. Brutal Hordechief is a remarkable creature with lots of potential. Yet, it might be a little hard to find the most suitable deck with its four CMC. As most of the Mardu decks are already utilizing Butcher of the Horde and Sorin, Solemn Visitor at four CMC range. And this will be a hard challenge for Brutal Hordechief to compete against the Butcher of the Horde. Brutal Hordechief might mostly be a bulk mythic card, but with some push, it can easily see 3-4 tix range.

Outpost Siege  Chandra, Pyromaster

I think Outpost Siege is an underestimated card for such two powerful modal options. Its Khan option is basically Chandra, Pyromaster's middle Elkin Bottle ability without any downsides and worries to attract attention. I can easily imagine few copies of Outpost Siege in Jeskai Burn or Mono Red decks. And its Dragon option is also working very well with combo oriented decks as a back up, such as a Jeskai Token deck with the Jeskai Ascendancy combo.

Flamerush Rider

Flamerush Rider seems interesting with its Dash CMC to increase aggression with maximum damage output. Putting any attacking creature's copy can be an alpha attack. But this card seems to me like mostly belong to the Limited formats or to a combo deck, rather than a straight Mardu or Mono Red midrange decks. My conservative price expectation for Flamerush Rider to be around 0.25-0.50 tix.

  Chandra's Phoenix

If you ever played with Chandra's Phoenix during previous Standard seasons, you know what kind of immediate impact it can do with flying, haste and pseudo-immortality. And in that regard, Flamewake Phoenix is coming with even better tempo ability to be re-born from its ashes just for a single Red mana, if we can cover its Ferocious requirement.

And that constrain makes Flamewake Phoenix more suitable for Temur, Gruul or Mono Red decks as a pair to Goblin Rabblemaster. Flamewake Phoenix is clearly one of my favorite rares in this set. And as financially I don't expect it to fall under 1 tix range. Its price may even wander at 2-3 tix range based on its impact intensity.

Shaman of the Great Hunt  

Shaman of the Great Hunt is another tricky mythic card. Its power level is real and also perfectly curves with Flamewake Phoenix, Goblin Rabblemaster, Yasova Dragonclaw, Boon Satyr or Savage Knuckleblade. The Haste factor and drawing card for each Ferocious creature can be devastating against certain deck types. As a whole package, Shaman of the Great Hunt is amazing, but it has to compete against Ashcloud Phoenix at the same CMC range. Ashcloud Phoenix is coming with an evasion and it is hard to be killed. On the other hand, Haste will matter, when we are playing against Control or Midrange decks. And its Ferocious card drawing ability is also fairly cheap.

I want to be conservative about the price estimation of Shaman of the Great Hunt, and will just advise to determine your reasonable price limit. As a base, it is a 4-5 tix card, but due to meta choices, it can also fall to 1 tix bulk ranges.

Yasova Dragonclaw 

Yasova Dragonclaw is currently the best Khan of the past with her repeatable Act of Treason ability that will change the dynamics of the game. First of all, she will help us to steal a creature with power four or less. Secondly, we will also create a space at opponent's defense. A consistent double value. And that value may even increase, if we steal Courser of Kruphix. Just imagine that.

Even on her own, Yasova Dragonclaw will present good aggression against most of the deck types with her 4/2 body & Trample. She will be a good addition to the Temur decks. My price expectation for Yasova Dragonclaw will be around 0.50-1 tix range.

Frontier Siege 

Frontier Siege is another tailor made card for Commander format. The ramp up factor from Khans option seems legit, but I don't think any deck in Standard will utilize it. Overall, a good card. My price estimation will be around 0.15-0.25 tix for short term and even lower after a few months.

Temur War Shaman

Temur War Shaman is just created for Limited formats. A bulk card, 0.05 tix.

Shamanic Revelation   Collective Unconscious

Shamanic Revelation will be a perfect fit for any Green Commander deck as a replacement or an addition to Collective Unconscious. Shamanic Revelation is also good enough to see some Standard play as one or two copies in G/R decks. My price estimation; 0.25-0.50 tix.

Whisperwood Elemental

Whisperwood Elemental seems like an anti-Wrath of God type card that will punish the opponent for using board sweepers. But, as general this card seems quite mediocre with limited application, unless Control decks become more dominant. Until then, Whisperwood Elemental will highly be a bulk mythic card with 1-1.5 tix price range.



Next week, I will finalize my Fate Reforged review with all the new Dragon cards and the rest of the official second week spoilers. Also, I will re-evaluate some of the Standard cards that may shine with the new meta of Fate Reforged. Please, always feel free to let me know your comments.

See you next time in the "Days of Standard" series...


Thanks by Dwarven_Pony at Fri, 01/09/2015 - 04:22
Dwarven_Pony's picture

Thanks for this excellent evaluation. I agree with your analysis.

My only suggestion is that I am not convinced that Ugin will "slowly may settle at 8-12 tix range within six months, if everything goes same." In my personal opinion, Ugin will remain high within 6 months, above $20. I could be wrong, but I don't see him falling down so low.

With the current meta status, by romellos at Fri, 01/09/2015 - 07:01
romellos's picture

With the current meta status, I can only imagine Ugin in UB, UW/R colored Control decks (in Standard format) as 2 copies. And in Modern, he will be in great competition against Karn. Regardless of that, Ugin will still see some play in Tron decks, mostly in Mono Blue versions. But I doubt, they will use it as x4 copies.

As a result, I don't think the demand to Ugin will be higher than the supply. But, meta may always change to new directions and I can be wrong about my assessment...

Thanks for the interesting by Paul Leicht at Fri, 01/09/2015 - 06:23
Paul Leicht's picture

Thanks for the interesting insights. Not sure I agree on your stance on mythic "bulk" prices as I've seen those go as low as .05. And some of the mythics you say aren't very good, seem like they have sleeper potential. Particularly if the next blocks are as slow as Khans Cycle seems to be.

Also re: Control, I've been hearing rumors on the grapevines of a decent UW counter deck coming up so I would not count control out of things just yet, and Bant Control could be the key. The Whisperwood Elemental for example could fit right into a control deck as a top card along side Wingmate Roc and or See The Unwritten. Not that I'd expect that to happen. I expect UW to be a contender, not so sure about a bant version but hey would be funny.

Paul, thank you very much for by romellos at Fri, 01/09/2015 - 07:32
romellos's picture

Paul, thank you very much for your comments.

It is true that there are a bunch of bulk mythics at 0.05 price. But they are promos and the cards that out of redemption (old core sets, MMA, VMA, Innistrad and rest older sets).

The lowest Standard legal mythic price I ever saw was around 0.25-0.30 tix in few cards. The first one I saw is currently at 3.87 tix (Giant Adephage) and others are Hythonia the Cruel and Medomai the Ageless. And their price will mostly also increase after the rotation, at least to 1-1.5 ranges. The price line of Standard mythics are not linear as the rare cards due to the fact that redemption criteria is heavily affecting their values.

The average price of a Standard legal bulk mythic card is mostly 1 tix (but it may dance between 0.5-1.5 during its two year life-span).

Whisperwood Elemental is an interesting card. It has a potential, but a very narrow application against few decks and it is not even much consistent when playing against Control decks. I think it will be mostly a SB card. Even, Hooded Hydra seems as a better option instead of it.

Temporal Trepass is about the by Jyalt at Sat, 01/10/2015 - 15:20
Jyalt's picture

Temporal Trepass is about the only call I disagree with. I think sometime during its run through standard it will hit 5 - 10tix (or more). Don't underestimate the extra attack steps granted from taking extra turns, Trepass is more than +1 card, untap... Trepass is a finisher. If someone builds a deck where its 'win' and not win more, the card is going to take off. I can see it fitting neatly into a Jeskai OR Sultai Ascendancy variant if a couple other supporting cards get printed.

I'd agree if it weren't for by longtimegone at Sun, 01/11/2015 - 14:51
longtimegone's picture

I'd agree if it weren't for the UUU in the cost.