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By: JXClaytor, Joshua Claytor
Feb 05 2021 12:00pm
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State of the Program for February 5th, 2021
 
In the News

Black is Magic:  WotC had a lot of words on Thursday for the newest Secret Lair, Black is Magic.  Most of those words were written by Jontelle Leyson-Smith, the first director of diversity, equity, and inclusion at Wizards of the Coast.  The Secret Lair is presented by game designer Sydney Adams, (Credits include Throne of Eldraine, Theros Beyond Death, Ikoria: Liar of Behemoths, Core Set 2021, and Zendikar Rising) and is benefitting Black Girls CODE.  The set goes on sale February 22nd, 2021, and so far includes new art cards for Ponder and Shalai, Voice of Plenty.  You can read the introduction to Black is Magic here.  You can read the design article here, and the product details here.  The cards in the set will trickle out through the rest of the month.

 

Saturday Super Qualifier:  Kaldheim sealed is the format this weekend

Magic Online Champions Showcase
:  March 13th and 14th show off the last two 2020 events of the Champions Showcase.  Both of them are Vintage Cube and Modern.  The feature a $70,000 prize pool. 
 

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. Not listed, but important: Wizards offers either one or two online MCQs each weekend, with qualifiers for limited MCQs running the days immediately prior to the MCQ.
 
Upcoming Events
Dates
Scheduled Downtimes
February 24, 2021
Constructed Leagues End
April 14, 2021
Sealed Leagues End
April 15, 2021
Next B&R
Unknown
Zendikar Rising Redemption
Ends April 7th, 2021
Kaldheim Redemption
Begins February 24, 2021
2018 Magic Online Championship Series and other events
Complete details, including schedule, rules, and which online events qualify you for which online or paper events is here. In addition, Wizards will be offering these special formats:

This changed this week, make sure to keep that in mind when looking at the schedule.  I put the changes in bold. 

February 3 - 10 - Triple Khans Flashback
February 10 - 17 - David McDarby's Live the Dream Cube
February 17 - 24 - Modern Horizons Encore Draft.  You keep the cards you draft! 
February 24 - March 3 - Ultimate Masters Flashback
March 3 - March 24 - Vintage Cube
March 24 - March 31 - Time Spiral Remasted Supreme Draft
March 31 - April 7 - New Spotlight Cube
April 7 - April 14 - Another new Spotlight Cube
 
Magic Online Format Challenges
These are high stakes events that happen every weekend. They cost 30 Tix / 300 play points, and last a number of rounds based on participation (assume 5-8), plus a single elimination Top 8. Details, including prize payouts, are here. Start times are:

TIME (PT) SATURDAY SUNDAY
12:00 a.m.   Vintage Challenge
2:00 a.m. Pauper Challenge  
4:00 a.m. Legacy Challenge Modern Challenge
6:00 a.m. Standard Challenge Pioneer Challenge
8:00 a.m. Modern Challenge Legacy Challenge
10:00 a.m. Vintage Challenge Pauper Challenge
2:00 p.m. Pioneer Challenge Standard Challenge
 
 



Cutting Edge Tech

Standard: I tried to feature decks using Kaldheim cards.  It was a lot easier to do that for Standard than it was any other format!
 

Historic:  A version of this is also floating around in StandardVorinclex, Monstrous Raider may have been the thing to finally break Emergent Ultimatum.  From my understanding of the deck, you cast the Ultimatum and grab Garruk, Unleashed, Vorinclex and Alrund's Epiphany.  If they give you the Garruk and the Vorinclex, you resolve the monster first and the Planeswalker second, that way you can fire off the ultimate and start bringing out creatures as soon as possible.  You may also just get three different Planeswalkers if you have Vorinclex in play already, as you can cast the Tibalt side of Valki and all three of these emblems are incredible. This seems like a very poor explanation, but I was only able to get the gist of it, because I can't speak French.   This deck also apparently comes from the same mind as the Izzet combo deck featuring The Locust God and Sage of the FallsElorim is appearing to be a most follow on Twitter! 


Legacy: Reidane, God of the Worthy is the only addition here, the snow land hate is incidental, but the tax text for noncreature spells your opponents cast is very important.  Making spells that cost four or more cost two more is a huge play! 


Modern:  This Thing in the Ice deck benefits from Behold the Multiverse costing four, but spread out over two turns. 


PauperIce Tunnel and Behold the Multiverse are both great pickups for the deck here.  Snow decks are sure to bet a bit more powerful thanks to the snow duals.  Skred is of course, still great, and only going to get better, even if we're not looking at an Izzet deck right now. 


Pioneer: The Raven's Warning is a fantastic addition to the deck, and Eskia's Chariot not only gives us more things to play Transmogrify with but also gives the deck another way to win, thanks to it's attack and copying tokens. 


Vintage: There were no cards from Kaldheim that I saw in Vintage decks this week, but I did want to send out a signal that Rick, Steadfast Leader is hanging out in the format. 



 
Winner's Circle

The Winner's Circle is where I will recognize winners of the past events on MTGO. 

Good weekend for nathansteuer! 

Challenge Winners

Saturday Legacy - MaxMagicer - OmniShow
Saturday Modern - ReturnToDust - Bant Field
Saturday Pauper - c_is_for_cookie - Elves
Saturday Pioneer - claudioh - Niv to Light
Saturday Standard - Mogged - Mono Green Aggro
Saturday Vintage - nathansteuer

Sunday Legacy - Kazuga - Temur Delver
Sunday Modern - B1gDan - Jund Shadow
Sunday Pauper - Boin - Boros Monarch
Sunday Pioneer - kanister - Niv to Light
Sunday Standard - nathansteuer - Izzet Control
Sunday Vintage - Beenew

Other Event Winners

Modern Champ Qualifier -
Shadowz2005 - 4 Color Uro Pile


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 a decade and a half now, and have never been overcharged or disappointed.
 
Standard Staples: After not doing Kaldheim prices last week because frankly most everything is overpriced and the prices are quickly out of date on new set releases, we get to the three cards that are on the list now.  Valki, God of Lies makes an impressive debut here. 

Standard Cards Price Last Week Change % Change
Brazen Borrower $14.02 $17.77 ($3.75) -21%
Bonecrusher Giant $5.81 $5.32 $0.49 9%
The Great Henge $5.96 $12.88 ($6.92) -54%
General Kudro of Drannith $4.25 $5.20 ($0.95) -18%
Shark Typhoon $7.63 $9.72 ($2.09) -22%
Vivien, Monsters' Advocate $5.55 $6.61 ($1.06) -16%
Lurrus of the Dream Den $8.49 $11.87 ($3.38) -28%
Valki, God of Lies $82.61


Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider $9.02


Goldspan Dragon $8.38


Teferi, Master of Time $3.44 $5.20 ($1.76) -34%
Terror of the Peaks $6.46 $11.47 ($5.01) -44%
Liliana, Waker of the Dead $4.55 $6.61 ($2.06) -31%
Elder Gargaroth $19.83 $23.92 ($4.09) -17%
Kroxa, Titan of Death's Hunger 17.62 23.4 ($5.78) -25%
Klothys, God of Destiny 6.33 9.69 ($3.36) -35%
Heliod, Sun-Crowned 5.89 8.17 ($2.28) -28%
Ox of Agonas 5.75 9.59 ($3.84) -40%
Scourge of the Skyclaves $30.35 $32.52 ($2.17) -7%
Turntimber Symbiosis $12.02 $14.44 ($2.42) -17%
Agadeem's Awakening $14.54 $13.86 $0.68 5%
Skyclave Apparition $16.17 $11.81 $4.36 37%
Shatterskull Smashing $14.84 $13.29 $1.55 12%
Sea Gate Restoration 7.67 7.65 $0.02 0%
Modern StaplesEngineered Explosives is off the list after a short time on it. 

Modern Cards Price Last Week Change % Change
Auriok Champion $21.63 $21.19 $0.44 2%
Steelshaper's Gift $10.23 $21.77 ($11.54) -53%
Cavern of Souls $20.08 $20.15 ($0.07) 0%
Mishra's Bauble $10.67 $9.47 $1.20 13%
Aether Vial $14.67 $18.82 ($4.15) -22%
Horizon Canopy $8.66 $10.38 ($1.72) -17%
Pact of Negation $6.01 $5.68 $0.33 6%
Liliana of the Veil $11.42 $12.24 ($0.82) -7%
Polluted Delta $7.06 $9.79 ($2.73) -28%
Wooded Foothills $5.81 $6.66 ($0.85) -13%
Flooded Strand $5.13 $8.35 ($3.22) -39%
Bloodstained Mire $5.36 $7.04 ($1.68) -24%
Windswept Heath $4.80 $5.50 ($0.70) -13%
Thoughtseize $6.31 $8.27 ($1.96) -24%
Cryptic Command $3.85 $5.98 ($2.13) -36%
Field of the Dead $14.72 $25.35 ($10.63) -42%
Elvish Reclaimer $7.87 $20.56 ($12.69) -62%
Force of Negation $81.55 $84.19 ($2.64) -3%
Wrenn and Six $64.29 $78.05 ($13.76) -18%
Prismatic Vista $10.19 $14.49 ($4.30) -30%
Sunbaked Canyon $10.05 $16.64 ($6.59) -40%
Seasoned Pyromancer $43.49 $45.16 ($1.67) -4%
Fiery Islet $11.12 $12.05 ($0.93) -8%
Urza, Lord High Artificer $8.50 $11.73 ($3.23) -28%
Plague Engineer $5.47 $9.54 ($4.07) -43%
Force of Vigor $12.44 $21.64 ($9.20) -43%
Collector Ouphe $3.59 $5.15 ($1.56) -30%
Ice-Fang Coatl $5.94 $11.19 ($5.25) -47%
Giver of Runes $8.39 $12.16 ($3.77) -31%
Hexdrinker $4.02 $7.42 ($3.40) -46%
Flusterstorm $10.34 $12.00 ($1.66) -14%
Archmage's Charm $4.10 $9.95 ($5.85) -59%
Ranger-Captain of Eos $5.42 $8.28 ($2.86) -35%
Silent Clearing $5.80 $7.23 ($1.43) -20%
Chalice of the Void $10.74 $11.70 ($0.96) -8%
Surgical Extraction $13.89 $14.29 ($0.40) -3%
Karn Liberated $5.64 $5.59 $0.05 1%
Emrakul,the Aeons Torn $11.60 $6.53 $5.07 78%
Ensnaring Bridge $8.17 $8.68 ($0.51) -6%
Gemstone Mine $20.54 $16.42 $4.12 25%
Jace, the Mind Sculptor $5.80 $8.14 ($2.34) -29%
Scalding Tarn $15.18 $17.03 ($1.85) -11%
Verdant Catacombs $11.60 $11.57 $0.03 0%
Misty Rainforest $13.42 $14.51 ($1.09) -8%
Arid Mesa $5.09 $6.15 ($1.06) -17%
Marsh Flats $4.47 $5.01 ($0.54) -11%
Eternal Staples

Eternal Format Cards Price Last Week Change % Change
Hullbreacher $73.52 $80.58 ($7.06) -9%
Opposition Agent $24.33 $25.36 ($1.03) -4%
Dark Depths $4.91 $5.25 ($0.34) -6%
Oko, Thief of Crowns $21.27 $25.91 ($4.64) -18%
City of Traitors $22.81 $24.74 ($1.93) -8%
Sphere of Resistance $8.16 $9.02 ($0.86) -10%
Monastery Mentor $4.56 $5.80 ($1.24) -21%
Allosaurus Shepherd $28.29 $41.71 ($13.42) -32%
Muxus, Goblin Grandee $8.08 $5.28 $2.80 53%
Force of Will $64.88 $66.26 ($1.38) -2%
Karakas $10.35 $11.95 ($1.60) -13%
The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale $58.55 $59.75 ($1.20) -2%
Demonic Tutor $12.68 $12.14 $0.54 4%
Echo of Eons $3.69 $8.72 ($5.03) -58%
Unmask $7.75 $9.98 ($2.23) -22%
Misdirection $10.88 $11.62 ($0.74) -6%
Rishadan Port $9.23 $10.74 ($1.51) -14%
Submerge $7.73 $8.74 ($1.01) -12%
Daze $6.46 $8.38 ($1.92) -23%
Entomb $6.88 $8.09 ($1.21) -15%
Yuriko, the Tiger's Shadow $45.65 $40.19 $5.46 14%
Mox Diamond $15.19 $16.90 ($1.71) -10%
Wasteland $40.92 $48.90 ($7.98) -16%
Ancient Tomb $20.66 $17.39 $3.27 19%
Lotus Petal $17.30 $18.92 ($1.62) -9%
Earthcraft $8.39 $7.78 $0.61 8%
Academy Rector $4.41 $5.87 ($1.46) -25%
Grim Monolith $13.48 $16.73 ($3.25) -19%
Exploration $13.42 $14.20 ($0.78) -5%
Gaea's Cradle $27.85 $29.60 ($1.75) -6%
Carpet of Flowers $28.17 $36.68 ($8.51) -23%
Gilded Drake $10.32 $10.86 ($0.54) -5%
Black Lotus $15.51 $18.23 ($2.72) -15%
Tropical Island $8.40 $9.98 ($1.58) -16%
Volcanic Island $9.87 $14.69 ($4.82) -33%
Underground Sea $10.59 $14.59 ($4.00) -27%
Sol Ring $7.45 $8.89 ($1.44) -16%
Null Rod $8.25 $8.69 ($0.44) -5%
Doomsday $23.06 $23.56 ($0.50) -2%
Paradigm Shift $10.40 $10.40 $0.00 0%
Mindbreak Trap $30.46 $23.21 $7.25 31%
Pioneer StaplesMana Confluence is back on the list, which is surprising to me, because I figured the Pathways would have made this card a lot less needed in the format.  We might be a couple of sets worth of rare lands for that to happen though.  

Pioneer Cards Price Last Time Change % Change
Soul-Scar Mage $5.78 $7.44 ($1.66) -22%
Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger $6.18 $7.38 ($1.20) -16%
Collected Company $7.44 $6.38 $1.06 17%
Assassin's Trophy $4.30 $5.38 ($1.08) -20%
Eidolon of the Great Revel $6.21 $8.30 ($2.09) -25%
Mana Confluence $5.92


Golos, Tireless Pilgrim $5.14 $6.45 ($1.31) -20%
Chandra, Awakened Inferno $3.64 $5.41 ($1.77) -33%
Uro, Titan of Nature's Wrath $61.23 $68.58 ($7.35) -11%
Teferi, Time Raveler $34.11 $39.86 ($5.75) -14%
Finale of Devastation $3.07 $5.09 ($2.02) -40%
Karn, the Great Creator $29.99 $49.74 ($19.75) -40%
Dreadhorde Arcanist $12.28 $16.16 ($3.88) -24%
Blast Zone $7.18 $9.11 ($1.93) -21%
Omnath, Locus of Creation $12.17 $12.40 ($0.23) -2%
Standard Legal Sets: This table tracks the cost of a single copy of every card in each Standard legal set, plus Treasure Chests and the current booster pack. I’ll keep tracking these because they are interesting (at least to me).  This is being kept as a small tribute to Pete! 

It looks like Standard sets this week took a huge hit.  I'm hoping that I messed this up, because I don't remember a loss like this, though it is easily explained by people getting rid of Standard stuff to buy new stuff.  Looking at the Standard table itself doesn't bring much hope for Joshua was bad at this this week. 

Complete Set Price Last Week Change % Change
Core Set 2021 $70.69 $99.43 ($28.74) -29%
Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths $57.54 $74.07 ($16.53) -22%
Kaldheim $156.45


Kaldheim Booster $3.26


Theros Beyond Death $144.55 $170.34 ($25.79) -15%
Throne of Eldraine $126.80 $149.69 ($22.89) -15%
Treasure Chest $2.45 $2.30 $0.15 7%
Zendikar Rising $133.95 $133.67 $0.28 0%


The Good Stuff
The following is a list of all the non-foil, non-promo cards on MTGO that retail for more than $25 per card. These are the big ticket items in the world of MTGO.  The list is interesting, at the least. This is interesting to me because a lot of these cards have been reprinted more than once, and they are still commanding a high price. 

Black Lotus 1E Rare $188.05
Snapcaster Mage UBT Mythic $101.69
Mox Jet 1E Rare $83.58
Valki, God of Lies KHM Mythic $82.61
Karakas UBT Mythic $82.30
Force of Negation MH1 Rare $81.55
Ancestral Recall 1E Rare $79.65
Cavern of Souls UBT Mythic $77.68
Liliana of the Veil UBT Mythic $74.73
Time Walk 1E Rare $74.54
Hullbreacher CMR Rare $73.52
Mox Emerald 1E Rare $70.01
Force of Will MED Rare $64.88
Wrenn and Six MH1 Mythic $64.29
Mox Sapphire 1E Rare $64.25
Uro, Titan of Nature's Wrath THB Mythic $61.23
The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale ME3 Rare $58.55
Karn Liberated UBT Mythic $50.41
Dark Depths UBT Mythic $49.31
Mox Pearl 1E Rare $47.67
Noble Hierarch UBT Mythic $46.88
Jace, the Mind Sculptor MS4 Mythic $46.85
Mox Ruby 1E Rare $46.51
Yuriko, the Tiger's Shadow PZ2 Rare $45.65
Seasoned Pyromancer MH1 Mythic $43.49
Platinum Emperion UBT Mythic $42.17
Force of Will 2XM Mythic $41.52
Wasteland TE Uncommon $40.92
Timetwister 1E Rare $40.02
Demonic Tutor UBT Mythic $38.79
Lord Windgrace PZ2 Mythic $38.48
Force of Will MS3 Mythic $38.38
Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth UBT Mythic $37.34
Purple-Crystal Crab PZ2 Common $36.72
Wasteland EXP Mythic $36.63
Liliana, the Last Hope MS4 Mythic $35.47
Force of Will EMA Mythic $35.42
Force of Will VMA Rare $34.89
Wasteland TPR Rare $34.17
Teferi, Time Raveler WAR Rare $34.11
Wasteland ZNE Mythic $33.06
Dockside Extortionist C19 Rare $33.03
Celestial Colonnade UBT Mythic $32.42
Mindbreak Trap ZEN Mythic $30.46
Scourge of the Skyclaves ZNR Mythic $30.35
Karn, the Great Creator WAR Rare $29.99
Heavenly Qilin PZ2 Common $29.74
Wasteland EMA Rare $29.27
Allosaurus Shepherd JMP Mythic $28.29
Carpet of Flowers UZ Uncommon $28.17
Gaea's Cradle UZ Rare $27.85
Teferi, Hero of Dominaria MS4 Mythic $26.41
Creeping Tar Pit UBT Mythic $25.70
Life from the Loam UBT Mythic $25.33
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 a number that I cannot figure out still. I have actually asked Pete to do this for me, because Open Office is weird, and I have no idea what I am doing, and I am pretty close to just being a dog in a labcoat.

Nevermind, ignore all of that, Pete got it done for me, because he is just the dang best. The big number this week is $25,535.  Last time it was $26,750.  Just lopping of $1,215 in a week doesn't seem great.  Standard of course suffered heavy, but I can't see that being where the most loss were. 
 
In Closing

I played a game of Magic that had me feel like writing about it this week. 

That game, that matchup, post board, Izzet Snow Control against Rakdos Aggro was the kind of game that makes me just hate Magic, the kind of game that makes me think of all the money I have put on to Arena or MTGO or even paper and come to regrets about a life poorly lived and dedicated to a game that can crush you without caring about you.  

I go from overwhelming favorite to win the game, presenting lethal in the air, to having no hope at all in less than 30 seconds.  My opponent's saga finishes, it brings back the new nighthawk (Nighthawk Scavenger), they drew (Mire TritonTHB).  The Mire Triton let Kroxa, Titan of Death's Hunger escape.  

I'm looking at the win percentage bar in my head.  From 99.9% to less than whatever percent it was for me to draw the perfect card.  The perfect card this time being a piece of removal for the nighthawk, to clear the blocker.  

The perfect card wasn't a land. That's for sure, and that's what I drew.  I wasn't completely gone though. I had blockers and a shark token that would survive Kroxa.  

The token did not surive as Hagra Mauling came off the top for them and now their win bar was firmly at 100%.  The life gain, the 6/6 beater, and soon enough Saheeli Rei has a smug smile on underneath a defeat banner. 

I love Magic.

This series is an ongoing tribute to Erik “Hamtastic” Friborg.