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By: one million words, Pete Jahn
Jan 29 2016 1:00pm
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State of the Program for January 29th 2016

In the News:

Oath of the Gatewatch Prereleases Begin Today: The online prereleases are here. Release events begin Monday.  The official card gallery is here. The mechanics article is here. You will be able to use product to enter the release events. Details here.
 
F8 Key Bugged: The latest update broke the F8 key. No word on a fix as I write this. Best comment was LSV’s “your F8 is sealed, at least until this gets fixed.”
 
OGW Design Article: Wizards has published an article detailing the changes to the client that were made to make OGW functional. The biggest change is to the mana system, to differentiate between generic and colorless mana. This required rebuilding the mana system from the ground up. This also meant that replays from before the downtime could not be replayed (technically, I guess any games which did not involve either player tapping mana could, but that’s not really relevant.) This is why replays form before the mana restructure are gone.
 
OGW Streamer Showdown this Afternoon: Wizards will be hosting an Oath of the Gatewatch Streamer Showdown later today.   As always, Wizards will host two drafts composed entirely of streamers. The drafts will run mid-afternoon and evening, PDT. Watch it on player’s streams on Twitch.tv. 
 
OWG Survey: Wizards is hosting a survey looking for feedback on Oath of the Gatewatch. It takes about 15 minutes, and asks for feedback on specific cards and the set as a whole. You can answer the survey here.
 
MTGO Hot Fix Thursday: Last week’s bug blog listed a number of errors and problems. One was major – the “reveal a dragon to do X” mechanic was busted. It was hot—fixed on Thursday. 
 

The Timeline:

This is a list of things we have been promised, or just want to see coming back.   Another good source for dates and times is the MTGO calendar and the weekly blog, while the best source for known bugs is the Known Issues List. For quick reference, here are some major upcoming events.   In addition, there are either one or two online PTQs each weekend, with qualifiers running the three days prior to the PTQ.
 
Item: date and notes
·         Oath of the Gatewatch Release Events: February 1 – February 17, 2016
·         Power Nine Challenge: Last Saturday of the month, at 11am Pacific.  Next one Jan. 30th.
·         Modern League End Date: Entries closed Jan. 25th, league ends Jan .27th.
·         Standard League End Date: Entries closed Jan. 25th, league ends Jan .27th.
·         Pauper League End Date: Entries closed Jan. 25th, league ends Jan .27th.
·         Sealed Leagues: Summer 2016
·         Regional PTQs on MTGO: Standard. February 20 at 3 p.m. Pacific and February 27 at 5 a.m. Pacific.   Details here.
·         Shadows over Innistrad Prerelease: April 15-18, 2016. Details here.
 
Flashback Schedule:
Flashback drafts are 10Tix / 100 Play Points / 2 Tix plus product, not Phantom, single elim and pay out in play points: 200 for first, 100 for second, 50 for third and fourth. 
·          (pause for OGW release events)
·         Triple Champions of Kamigawa: February 17, 2016 to February 24, 2016
·         2 Champions of Kamigawa and 1 Betrayers of Kamigawa: February 24 to March 2, 2016
·         Champions, Betrayers, and Saviors of Kamigawa: March 2, 2016 to March 9, 2016
·         Triple Ninth Edition: March 9, 2016 to March 16, 2016
·         Triple Ravnica: March 16, 2016 to March 23, 2016
·         2 Ravnica and 1 Guildpact: March 23, 2016 to March 30, 2016
·         Ravnica, Guildpact, and Dissension: March 30, 2016 to April 6, 2016
·         Triple Coldsnap: April 6, 2016 to April 13, 2016
·         Triple Time Spiral: May 4, 2016 to May 11, 2016
·         2 Time Spiral and 1 Planar Chaos: May 11, 2016 to May 18, 2016
·         Time Spiral, Planar Chaos, and Future Sight: May 18, 2016 to May 25, 2016
·         Triple Tenth Edition: May 25, 2016 to June 1, 2016
·         Triple Lorwyn: likely June 1 to June 8
·         2 Lorwyn, Morningtide: likely June 8 to June 15
·         Triple Shadowmoor: likely June 15 to June 22
·         2 Shadowmoor, Eventide: likely June 22 to June 29
 

Opinion Section: Questions

I started to write about Proxies, Counterfeits and unsanctioned 10 Proxy Vintage events, but that is a paper world issue. MTGO does not have that problem, and this site is dedicated to MTGO. But that got me wondering about what readers want. I have some questions.
 
1) Do you want me to comment on hot button topics affecting only the paper world?
 
2) Do you want commentaries on issues related to the Pro Tour / Worlds / Grand Prix?
 
3) How do you feel if I comment on things I have discussed before? I have been writing about Magic for over 15 years, and have published close to 1,000 articles. I have covered a lot of topics. Is it fair to revisit topics? Is it okay to write about something I discussed ten years ago? Five years? Two years?
 
4) What topics would you like me to address?
 

Cutting Edge Tech:

Standard: Wizards held the Sunday Super Series Championship at their HQ in Renton last weekend. The Sunday Super Series events run on Sunday’s at GPs. The 60 winners play a mixed format event featuring booster draft and Standard. Wizards loans out any new cards the players need – making it possible for players to field a serious deck the day the set becomes legal, while away from home. This makes it a real look at OGFW Standard. Sam Black ran the tables at the event.
 
4 Color Rally
Sam Black, Winner, Sunday Super Series Champs, Renton
Creatures
2 Elvish Visionary
3 Grim Haruspex
4 Nantuko Husk
9 cards

Other Spells
3 Sidisi's Faithful
3 Ayli, Eternal Pilgrim
4 Jace, Vryn's Prodigy
2 Catacomb Sifter
3 Reflector Mage
4 Zulaport Cutthroat
4 Collected Company
4 Rally the Ancestors
2 Sunken Hollow
2 Prairie Stream
1 Canopy Vista
11 cards
 
Lands
1 Forest
1 Plains
1 Island
1 Swamp
4 Windswept Heath
4 Flooded Strand
4 Polluted Delta
3 Evolving Wilds
19 cards

Rally the Ancestors
 
Modern:  We have a Modern Pro Tour coming shortly, so not much serious info so far. One interesting deck did show up recently: a green Tooth and Nail ramp deck.

 
 
Pauper:   If you are looking to get into Pauper, or just curious about the format, you need to read Alex Ullman’s format overview. Then read his article on the likely effects of banning Cloud of Faeries, here. The pauper world just got more interesting. We should see new decklists next week.
 
Legacy: Last week, we saw Reanimator win a DE.   This week, another old classic won an SCG Classic. Still plenty of Storm and Delver and Miracles in the Top 16, but Goblins won.   With one OGW card in the deck: Warping Wail.
 
 
Vintage: The Vintage Super League Season 4 is continuing. Decklists from the second round are here. The clear powerhouses are mana denial Shops and Storm with Dark Petition.  I’m not really seeing much else, at the moment.
 

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 are a mix again this week.  I will be adding prices for some OGW cards in the next couple weeks, once MTGOTraders.com gets them up and they stabilize a bit.
 

Standard Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$8.56
$8.43
$0.13
2%
$10.35
$8.64
$1.71
20%
$14.87
$14.08
$0.79
6%
$9.44
$8.58
$0.86
10%
$7.18
$7.28
($0.10)
-1%
$6.35
$6.90
($0.55)
-8%
$14.04
$13.99
$0.05
0%
$8.62
$8.61
$0.01
0%
$14.71
$15.44
($0.73)
-5%
$8.54
$8.19
$0.35
4%
$64.04
$61.17
$2.87
5%
$13.70
$10.85
$2.85
26%
$16.38
$14.89
$1.49
10%
$9.06
$9.00
$0.06
1%
$9.79
$9.22
$0.57
6%
$7.83
$7.41
$0.42
6%
$5.20
$5.05
$0.15
3%
$11.57
$12.44
($0.87)
-7%
$13.21
$13.19
$0.02
0%

Modern staples:  Modern prices were down a bit, especially for cards affected by the bannings. Griselbrand is back up, since the Goryo’s Vengeance / Griselbrand / Shoal decks were unaffected. We will see what the Pro Tour brings ten days from now.   
 

Modern Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$23.29
$27.09
($3.80)
-14%
$19.04
$21.67
($2.63)
-12%
$31.18
$30.60
$0.58
2%
$20.49
$25.98
($5.49)
-21%
$24.32
$24.32
$0.00
0%
$25.28
$25.48
($0.20)
-1%
$36.66
$33.11
$3.55
11%
$53.34
$49.82
$3.52
7%
$49.84
$49.31
$0.53
1%
$36.71
$38.49
($1.78)
-5%
$26.60
$28.82
($2.22)
-8%
$33.19
$38.48
($5.29)
-14%
$77.61
$81.95
($4.34)
-5%
$43.30
$45.00
($1.70)
-4%
$25.16
$28.49
($3.33)
-12%
$46.68
$38.34
$8.34
22%
$44.01
$39.73
$4.28
11%
$17.46
$16.37
$1.09
7%
$57.26
$59.97
($2.71)
-5%
$25.41
$25.73
($0.32)
-1%
$15.83
$15.62
$0.21
1%
$40.50
$42.08
($1.58)
-4%

Legacy and Vintage: Legacy is quiet. The Power Nine climbed two weeks ago, and some fell back again this week. The rest of the table made few changes.
 

Legacy / Vintage Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$53.52
$55.51
($1.99)
-4%
$140.83
$140.04
$0.79
1%
$29.50
$29.84
($0.34)
-1%
$42.74
$42.74
$0.00
0%
$31.20
$30.58
$0.62
2%
$26.05
$26.01
$0.04
0%
$28.51
$28.51
$0.00
0%
$38.60
$42.94
($4.34)
-10%
$107.16
$107.04
$0.12
0%
$40.72
$46.94
($6.22)
-13%
$64.27
$68.70
($4.43)
-6%
$179.17
$179.17
$0.00
0%
$41.43
$41.31
$0.12
0%
$65.97
$65.40
$0.57
1%
$37.04
$38.15
($1.11)
-3%
$78.17
$80.50
($2.33)
-3%

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.  
 

Complete Set
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
Battle for Zendikar
$70.60
$72.51
($1.91)
-3%
Dragons of Tarkir
$127.36
$119.47
$7.89
7%
Fate Reforged
$53.22
$52.73
$0.49
1%
Khans of Tarkir
$85.05
$82.48
$2.57
3%
Magic Origins
$128.17
$122.81
$5.36
4%

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. The list is pretty much unchanged this week. A couple more cards have topped $25, but no major changes.   
 

Card
Set
Rarity
 Price
Rishadan Port
 MM
Rare
 $ 179.17
Black Lotus
 VMA
Bonus
 $ 140.83
Misdirection
 MM
Rare
 $ 107.16
Wasteland
 TE
Uncommon
 $  78.18
Wasteland
 TPR
Rare
 $  78.17
Liliana of the Veil
 ISD
Mythic Rare
 $  77.61
Tangle Wire
 NE
Rare
 $  65.97
Tarmogoyf
 MMA
Mythic Rare
 $  64.33
Mox Sapphire
 VMA
Bonus
 $  64.27
Jace& Vryn's Prodigy
 ORI
Mythic Rare
 $  64.04
Tarmogoyf
 MM2
Mythic Rare
 $  59.81
Tarmogoyf
 FUT
Rare
 $  57.26
Ancestral Recall
 VMA
Bonus
 $  53.52
Grove of the Burnwillows
 FUT
Rare
 $  53.34
Horizon Canopy
 FUT
Rare
 $  49.84
Mox Opal
 SOM
Mythic Rare
 $  46.71
Scalding Tarn
 ZEN
Rare
 $  46.68
Scapeshift
 MOR
Rare
 $  44.01
Mox Opal
 MM2
Mythic Rare
 $  43.30
Force of Will
 MED
Rare
 $  42.85
Doomsday
 WL
Rare
 $  42.74
Show and Tell
 UZ
Rare
 $  41.43
Mox Jet
 VMA
Bonus
 $  40.72
Voice of Resurgence
 DGM
Mythic Rare
 $  40.50
Infernal Tutor
 DIS
Rare
 $  38.60
Time Walk
 VMA
Bonus
 $  37.04
Inkmoth Nexus
 MBS
Rare
 $  36.71
Griselbrand
 AVR
Mythic Rare
 $  36.66
Mox Ruby
 VMA
Bonus
 $  36.40
Karn Liberated
 NPH
Mythic Rare
 $  34.86
Blood Moon
 MMA
Rare
 $  34.07
Oblivion Stone
 CMD
Rare
 $  33.43
Keranos& God of Storms
 JOU
Mythic Rare
 $  33.19
Blood Moon
 9ED
Rare
 $  31.89
Daze
 DD2
Common
 $  31.54
Food Chain
 MM
Rare
 $  31.20
Blood Moon
 8ED
Rare
 $  31.18
Mox Pearl
 VMA
Bonus
 $  30.84
Goryo's Vengeance
 BOK
Rare
 $  30.04
Daze
 NE
Common
 $  29.50
Mox Emerald
 VMA
Bonus
 $  29.42
Ensnaring Bridge
 ST
Rare
 $  28.95
Gaea's Cradle
 UZ
Rare
 $  28.51
Ensnaring Bridge
 8ED
Rare
 $  26.98
Dark Depths
 CSP
Rare
 $  26.94
Karn Liberated
 MM2
Mythic Rare
 $  26.60
Ensnaring Bridge
 7E
Rare
 $  26.38
Exploration
 UZ
Rare
 $  26.12
Force of Will
 VMA
Rare
 $  26.05
Twilight Mire
 EVE
Rare
 $  25.41
Eidolon of the Great Revel
 JOU
Rare
 $  25.28
Oblivion Stone
 MRD
Rare
 $  25.16
Sneak Attack
 UZ
Rare
 $  24.99

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 you can own is $ 26,340.  That’s up about $330 from last week’s number.   
 

Weekly Highlights:

Not much Magic – I’m trying to get everything else done so I have time to play in the prerelease and release events. 
 
 
PRJ
 
“One Million Words” and “3MWords” 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.  
 
 

 

9 Comments

Opinion Section by Rerepete at Fri, 01/29/2016 - 18:05
Rerepete's picture

Your opinion section is one of my favorite sections of the article. As far as I am concerned, you can write about anything that grips your attention at the time. Even things not directly MtGP or MtGO items that can be related to MtG (Which pretty much includes anything).

As for repeating things, that's fine by me, as history often repeats itself and the same issues recur again.

As this was Erik's corner by Paul Leicht at Fri, 01/29/2016 - 18:37
Paul Leicht's picture
5

As this was Erik's corner stone weekly post at one time, now it is yours. It is also your soap box. I think in that spirit you should be writing about whatever it is that you have strong opinions in the week you are writing this or weeks before if you get a little lagged behind the news.

Free Reign by ComixWriter at Fri, 01/29/2016 - 19:21
ComixWriter's picture
5

Dear Mr. Jahn:

I appreciate your dedication to writing about Magic: the Gathering. While I haven't followed you until I joined MTGO in August, I look forward to your weekly articles. Honestly, about 75% of your content does not immediately interest me; I don't have a need to understand price fluxes of the Power Nine because I struggle with Standard Pauper at the moment.

However, I value your introductory paragraphs. I've grown to learn a lot about the overall temperature of the general gaming environment. You cite other authors' work, and seem to have a weathered experience about uproarious changes. This level-headed approach allows me to digest news, and you often provide a backdrop against which to judge for ourselves.

Regarding your inquiry about what to cover in future writings, I feel like Picasso just asked us what he should paint. Your experience trumps a lot of what other people may want to see, but I think enough other writers may cover Topic X,, while you write about what you deem important (because it probably is). I would appreciate takes on reprints and their impact, as well as how the NWO may be influencing card value- especially at common rarity.

Please take time to sharpen your saw, reinvest in yourself, and do whatever it is you do to keep great content flowing.

Thanks, and be well-
Dave

1) Yes even though the site by TheKidsArentAlright at Fri, 01/29/2016 - 20:23
TheKidsArentAlright's picture

1) Yes even though the site is aimed at MODO, we are still part of the Magic community at large, and I would guess that most of the readers also play paper.

2) Also yes, with the recent changes to the MOCS granting pro players automatic invites, these events are more relevant than ever to the online platform

3) Yes again. A lot as changed in the past 15, 10, or even 2 years. If you think a topic seems worthy of revisiting, it probably is.

4) On thing that's been on my mind for a while is returning to previous planes, and more specifically Shadows Over Innistrad. In the past 3 years, we've gone back to Ravnica and Zendikar. While the original blocks were well received and generally liked, the revisitations have been met with a lot more criticism and have not gone over as well. What lessons do you think WotC can take away from this and what do they need to do to make SoI as beloved by the players as the original Innistrad?

Write about whatever you want by Leviathan at Sun, 01/31/2016 - 19:46
Leviathan's picture

Write about whatever you want Pete. Even things offline can affect MTGO.

Unrelated, does anyone know if replays for multiplayer games work yet? Just curious.

From what I understand they by Paul Leicht at Sun, 01/31/2016 - 20:25
Paul Leicht's picture

From what I understand they were broken for the entire client last week and have not been fixed since.

Topic by Hearts at Sun, 01/31/2016 - 22:02
Hearts's picture

4) What topics would you like me to address?

I would like to hear about bribery and collusion in paper, and what you are allowed/not allowed to say (together/not together, same sentences - when seated).

I would like to hear some by Lagrange at Mon, 02/01/2016 - 09:18
Lagrange's picture

I would like to hear some more about being a mtg judge. You mentioned that you had some rules puzzles for players to see how well they knew the rules ie for wannabe judges. Can you list a few of these examples. Also what is it like being a judge at a paper tournament. Have you learned anything you could utilize in mtgo? Are there any issues in not having a judge online but rather a rules engine?

I'll comment on the length of by xger at Tue, 02/02/2016 - 01:17
xger's picture

I'll comment on the length of time for repeat topics. I think, generally, anything that hasn't been discussed in over a year is fair game, as beyond that would strain almost everyone's memory. Six months would likely be the shortest time that would not be noticed by a decent number of players since that amount of time fits the now current block cycles.