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By: JXClaytor, Joshua Claytor
Nov 22 2023 10:22am
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State of the Program for November 22nd, 2023

 
In the News

This information was accurate as of November 22, 2023.  This site will no longer update after that date.  For the most up to date information follow Daybreak on their social media channels.

MTGO Socials:
Daybreak has set up forums for MTGO, which you can find here. In addition to the Forums, Daybreak has set up a Discord for MTGO.  You can get the invite here. MTGO has a Twitter account, and can now add an account for Facebook and Instagram

Two-Factor Authentication:  This is in Account Settings.  To turn it on you will be asked for your account password and a 6-digit code sent to the email associated with your account.  You can use either an email or authenticator based system.  This will help keep your accounts secure, you can read about the system here.

Redemption:  Since this will be the last update to State of the Program, it seems like it's important to know where you can find the redemption page, and less important that you could currently redeem a set, and that turn out not to be true whenever someone stumbles on it next year You can check the new redemption page here.

Patch Notes: You can check out the notes for this update here.

The Timeline

This information was accurate as of November 22, 2023.  This site will no longer update after that date.  For the most up to date information follow Daybreak on their social media channels.

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
January 17, 2024
Constructed Leagues End
February 6, 2024
Sealed Leagues End
February 6, 2024
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:

Ongoing -  Vintage Cube witth 64 player events.

November 29 - Supreme Masters Draft. 
December 6 - Gavin Thompson-Exner's AlphaFrog Cube
December 20 - Vintage Cube Holiday Festival
January 17 - Ravnica Remastered

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) FRIDAY SATURDAY SUNDAY
12:00 a.m.     Vintage Challenge
1:00 a.m   Limited 32 Challenge 32 Player Limited 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
12:00 p.m.   Limited Challenge Limited Challenge
2:00 p.m. Pioneer Challenge
Pioneer Challenge Standard Challenge
4:00 p.m. Limited 32 Challenge    
6:00 p.m. Modern 32 Challenge Modern 32 Challenge  

 

Cutting Edge Tech

The theme this week are the most powerful decks since I started my Content Manager gig here at the site. 

Standard
:  Standard, for the most part of my time here has been pretty good.  While the format is struggling now, and working to rebuild past the fire that was F.I.R.E design and the effect of the pandemic on local game stores, Standard in 2023 is pretty decent.  There were some rough patches that saw some bans but nothing was as harmful, in my eyes to Standard outside of Affinity than the Caw-blade meta.  Sure Aetherworks Marvel was annoying and rightfully got the axe, and Reflector Mage and Attune with Aether were all overplayed. Smuggler's Copter was powerful and the first Eldraine was bad, but nothing was nearly as bad as the Jace, the Mind Sculptor Stoneforge Mystic Standard.  Stores were empty of players wanting to avoid the format, and finally, it was taken out of format.  It was cathartic to set fire to a set of Stoneforge Mystics outside of the store I played at, but maybe a little short sighted to do. 


Legacy: In June of 2007, a month after my son was born, I was in Columbus, Ohio, for the last time in 16 years.  The format was Legacy and I wanted to take a break before the next semester of school stated, (my first in 8 years) and have a weekend to kinda step back from Magic. Of course my last Grand Prix for the foreseeable future would be dominated by a combo deck.  It wouldn't be the no land Goblin Charbelcher deck that I played, but instead the soon to be banned Hulk Flash. Sure second place with Goblins, and two copies of Mono Black Aggro made the top eight, but it was the combination of Flash and Protean Hulk.  Flash had been errata'ed shortly before the event, and enters and leaves the battlefield effects happened with the card.  Better Magic players than me figured out that you could win the game with Carrion Feeder, Karmic Guide and Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker.  Flash would leave the format soon after. 


Modern
: For a format that started to bridge the gap between Legavy and Standard, Modern has almost always been about powerful decks.  What started with an initial 21 card banned list, grew to 29 soon after the only skins Pro Tour to have ever happened.  It feels like there is a clear best deck in the format, which has led to cards like Second Sunrise, Birthing Pod, Splinter Twin and Eye of Ugin getting banned over time.  Recently though, outside of Hogaak, Arisen Necropolis the format never really seemed to be super dominated by a thing, and while Oko, Thief of Crowns and Mycosynth Lattice were annoying they weren't as widely played as what I feel the most dominate Modern deck of my time here was.  Rakdos Scam is my pick for most powerful deck of the format in my time here. 


Pauper:  One of the best days for the site happened in 2009.  Alex Ullman, long time supporter of the site, and at that time, just a younger content creator getting his passion for the format out for the world blew up my inbox to tell me that Pauper was coming to MTGO as a sanctioned format!  Alex was all over the place pushing his love for the format here, and eventually on other sites as well.  The next best day for the site?  The first Community Cup!  Alex was a part of that too! 


Pioneer:  Added as a format in 2019, this one looked to fill the gap between Modern and Standard and it had grown significantly!  While the youngest of the formats, the Pandemic really hurt it out of the gate.  Further that, after the weekly bans were done, Wizards of the Coast just, kind of ignored it.  I think with instore play not happening that ignoring it would be okay, but letting the Dimir Inverter deck run through the format for so long was really the worst idea.  Hopefully current Pioneer isn't harmed for as long as Inverter Pioneer was. 


Vintage:  One last Vintage deck for the road, and it features one of the only cards banned in Vintage while I was here. Lurrus of the Dream Den had companion so a restriction would have been pointless and I am for sure not featuring a deck with (Shahrazad) in it. Also the Conspiracy card type doesn't count.

 
Winner's Circle

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

Challenge Winners

Friday Modern - Viatt - Rakdos Scam
Friday Pioneer - mrtoolshed

Saturday Legacy - pokemoki - Sultai Beans
Saturday Modern - HouseofManaMTG - AmuLIT
Saturday Modern - Showcase Challege
Saturday Pauper - Niederschatten - Dimir Midrange
Saturday Pioneer - Graciasportanto - Rakdos Midrange
Saturday Standard - remf - Azorius Aggro
Saturday Vintage - yPrincipe

Sunday Legacy - yPrincipe - Mono Red Prison
Sunday Modern - Did not fire.
Sunday Pauper - MatheusPonciano - Mono Red Prowess
Sunday Pioneer - Showcase Challenge
Sunday Standard - TheManLand - Esper Midrange
Sunday Vintage - discoverN

Other Event Winners

Modern Showcase Challege
Pioneer Showcase Challenge

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.

I hated doing the pricing charts the most.  This part felt like a chore and kept from doing what I really wanted to do, and needlessly took up more time than it needed to in the article preperation of the week.  While it was an honor to carry on the work of Erik and Pete, I will not be sad when I delete the tools I use for this part of the column!

These are the final pricing charts for the site.  Of note, Lost Caverns of Ixalan were never added to the site, which means I do not have pricing data for them. 
 
Standard Staples:

Standard Cards Price Last Week Change % Change
Cityscape Leveler $4.52 $5.00 -$0.48 -10%
Brotherhood's End $6.53 $7.81 -$1.28 -16%
Leyline Binding $20.92 $28.32 -$7.40 -26%
Sheoldred, the Apocalypse $19.95 $28.47 -$8.52 -30%
Nissa, Resurgent Animist $10.36 $12.07 -$1.71 -14%
Pia Nalaar, Consul of Revival $5.79 $5.79 $0.00 0%
Memory Deluge $2.58 $5.94 -$3.36 -57%
Bloodthirsty Adversary $7.64 $8.91 -$1.27 -14%
Boseiju, Who Endures $20.71 $25.20 -$4.49 -18%
The Wandering Emperor $7.64 $6.79 $0.85 13%
Atraxa, Grand Unifier $6.08 $7.63 -$1.55 -20%
Elesh Norn, Mother of Machines $5.34 $8.67 -$3.33 -38%
Ledger Shredder $4.52 $8.45 -$3.93 -47%
Unlicensed Hearse $5.19 $6.13 -$0.94 -15%
Agatha's Soul Cauldron $47.72 $50.33 -$2.61 -5%
Questing Druid $7.89 $7.96 -$0.07 -1%
Beseech the Mirror $14.88 $13.66 $1.22 9%
Modern Staples:

Modern Cards Price Last Week Change % Change
Engineered Explosives $6.00 $10.99 -$4.99 -45%
Cavern of Souls $4.37 $6.00 -$1.63 -27%
Mishra's Bauble $5.69 $6.50 -$0.81 -12%
Polluted Delta $9.86 $11.80 -$1.94 -16%
Wooded Foothills $6.28 $5.39 $0.89 17%
Flooded Strand $8.64 $7.29 $1.35 19%
Bloodstained Mire $5.98 $4.66 $1.32 28%
Windswept Heath $4.82 $5.35 -$0.53 -10%
The One Ring $59.90 $72.86 -$12.96 -18%
Orcish Bowmasters $36.15 $42.04 -$5.89 -14%
Force of Negation $16.58 $18.29 -$1.71 -9%
Wrenn and Six $9.59 $10.88 -$1.29 -12%
Sunbaked Canyon $3.64 $5.33 -$1.69 -32%
Force of Vigor $14.14 $14.26 -$0.12 -1%
Flusterstorm $7.72 $7.80 -$0.08 -1%
Yawgmoth, Thran Physician $4.28 $5.67 -$1.39 -25%
Grist, the Hunger Tide $6.35 $8.31 -$1.96 -24%
Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer $17.46 $19.71 -$2.25 -11%
Urza's Saga $27.65 $28.61 -$0.96 -3%
Solitude $20.71 $20.83 -$0.12 -1%
Endurance $15.24 $19.88 -$4.64 -23%
Grief $17.41 $24.22 -$6.81 -28%
Murktide Regent $10.82 $14.83 -$4.01 -27%
Fury $29.90 $41.66 -$11.76 -28%
Esper Sentinel $7.79 $5.01 $2.78 55%
Subtlety $15.24 $15.38 -$0.14 -1%
Chalice of the Void $8.28 $13.87 -$5.59 -40%
Dismember $7.75 $6.34 $1.41 22%
Teferi, Time Raveler $9.44 $12.15 -$2.71 -22%
Scalding Tarn $5.02 $4.47 $0.55 12%
Verdant Catacombs $1.78 $2.82 -$1.04 -37%
Misty Rainforest $5.67 $6.25 -$0.58 -9%
Arid Mesa $1.48 $1.44 $0.04 3%
Marsh Flats $0.46 $0.95 -$0.49 -52%
Eternal Staples

Eternal Format Cards Price Last Time Change % Change
Creative Technique $24.00 $24.00 $0.00 0%
Avenging Hunter $6.50 $4.26 $2.24 53%
Kenku Artificer $5.21 $6.55 ($1.34) -20%
Goliath Paladin $4.71 $5.28 ($0.57) -11%
Displacer Kitten $7.99 $7.99 $0.00 0%
Minsc & Boo, Timeless Heroes $6.99 $8.68 ($1.69) -19%
Seasoned Dungeoneer $6.28 $11.83 ($5.55) -47%
Caves of Chaos Adventurer $21.00 $12.71 $8.29 65%
Hullbreacher $14.27 $9.69 $4.58 47%
Opposition Agent $17.25 $18.30 ($1.05) -6%
City of Traitors $19.85 $23.58 ($3.73) -16%
Muxus, Goblin Grandee $17.26 $31.67 ($14.41) -46%
Helm of Obedience $10.13 $10.09 $0.04 0%
Force of Will $28.39 $28.47 ($0.08) 0%
Urza's Bauble $16.38 $12.59 $3.79 30%
Hydroblast $6.82 $11.58 ($4.76) -41%
Pyroblast $5.59 $6.03 ($0.44) -7%
The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale $11.67 $11.39 $0.28 2%
Phyrexian Dreadnought $7.48 $8.00 ($0.52) -6%
Unmask $7.40 $10.94 ($3.54) -32%
Misdirection $13.67 $13.51 $0.16 1%
Snuff Out $10.52 $9.66 $0.86 9%
Rishadan Port $9.28 $8.70 $0.58 7%
Submerge $6.16 $6.25 ($0.09) -1%
Recruiter of the Guard $10.68 $11.19 ($0.51) -5%
Stifle $7.60 $7.80 ($0.20) -3%
Mox Opal $7.24 $7.16 $0.08 1%
Mox Diamond $13.31 $19.64 ($6.33) -32%
Wasteland $12.97 $13.92 ($0.95) -7%
Ancient Tomb $27.73 $22.11 $5.62 25%
Lotus Petal $13.14 $11.41 $1.73 15%
Grindstone $10.89 $9.28 $1.61 17%
Powder Keg $14.05 $11.17 $2.88 26%
Grim Monolith $23.70 $19.22 $4.48 23%
Gaea's Cradle $17.28 $18.84 ($1.56) -8%
Gilded Drake $7.37 $6.49 $0.88 14%
Show and Tell $26.81 $26.92 ($0.11) 0%
Time Spiral $7.98 $8.74 ($0.76) -9%
Black Lotus $19.08 $16.98 $2.10 12%
Volcanic Island $22.09 $23.58 ($1.49) -6%
Underground Sea $12.82 $17.70 ($4.88) -28%
Tundra $5.41 $6.38 ($0.97) -15%
Null Rod $19.16 $17.62 $1.54 9%
Doomsday $9.14 $12.02 ($2.88) -24%
Paradigm Shift $4.13 $5.57 ($1.44) -26%
Pioneer Staples

Pioneer Cards Price Last Time Change % Change
Hall of Storm Giants $4.27 $5.67 -$1.40 -24.69%
Hive of the Eye Tyrant $3.88 $6.10 -$2.22 -36.39%
Tasha's Hideous Laughter $4.73 $5.94 -$1.21 -20.37%
Brazen Borrower $6.79 $10.75 -$3.96 -36.84%
Arclight Phoenix $6.01 $9.20 -$3.19 -34.67%
Mana Confluence $6.15 $5.27 $0.88 16.70%
Blightstep Pathway $4.05 $5.87 -$1.82 -31.01%
Spirebluff Canal $6.02 $5.13 $0.89 17.35%
Inspiring Vantage $4.63 $6.80 -$2.17 -31.91%
Lotus Field $10.95 $10.84 $0.11 1.01%
Fable of the Mirror-Breaker $10.84 $13.24 -$2.40 -18.13%
Magma Opus $5.16


Karn, the Great Creator $4.75 $8.74 -$3.99 -45.65%
Omnath, Locus of Creation $6.40 $9.96 -$3.56 -35.74%
Shatterskull Smashing $5.13 $5.03 $0.10 1.99%
Sea Gate Restoration $5.79 $5.13 $0.66 12.85%
Roiling Vortex $12.67 $23.11 -$10.44 -45.18%
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!

Complete Set Price Last Time Change % Change
The Brothers' War $40.62 $47.77 ($7.15) -15%
Dominaria United $77.22 $96.02 ($18.80) -20%
Innistrad: Crimson Vow $41.53 $46.60 ($5.07) -11%
Innistrad: Midnight Hunt $53.91 $65.61 ($11.70) -18%
Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty $70.98 $79.23 ($8.25) -10%
March of the Machine $75.89 $86.30 ($10.41) -12%
Phyrexia: All Will Be One $157.58 $182.82 ($25.24) -14%
Streets of New Capenna $39.49 $45.09 ($5.60) -12%
Treasure Chest Booster $2.39 $2.19 $0.20 9%
Wilds of Eldraine $167.54 $183.35 ($15.81) -9%
Wilds of Eldraine Booster $1.06 $2.13 ($1.07) -50%


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 247.53
Mox Jet 1E Rare 96.4
Ancestral Recall 1E Rare 87.26
The One Ring LTR Mythic 59.9
Time Walk 1E Rare 58.98
Mox Sapphire 1E Rare 57.09
Liliana of the Veil UBT Mythic 55.21
The One Ring LTR Mythic 53.96
The One Ring LTR Mythic 53.49
Mox Pearl 1E Rare 51.21
Mox Emerald 1E Rare 48.29
Timetwister 1E Rare 43.53
Cavern of Souls UBT Mythic 42.88
Agatha's Soul Cauldron WOE Mythic 42.72
Mox Ruby 1E Rare 41.11
Karakas UBT Mythic 40.63
Agatha's Soul Cauldron WOE Mythic 38.47
Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth UBT Mythic 38.2
Demonic Tutor UBT Mythic 36.91
Orcish Bowmasters LTR Rare 36.15
Dark Depths UBT Mythic 35.66
Breath of Fire PZ2 Common 34.66
Orcish Bowmasters LTR Rare 34.33
Underground Sea ME4 Rare 34.1
Heavenly Qilin PZ2 Common 32.27
Underground Sea ME2 Rare 32.05
Kozilek, Butcher of Truth UBT Mythic 30.87
Reanimate UBT Mythic 30.6
Fury MH2 Mythic 29.9
Armored Whirl Turtle PZ2 Common 29.59
Force of Will MED Rare 28.39
Sheoldred, the Apocalypse ONE Promo 28.1
Ancient Tomb TE Uncommon 27.73
Urza's Saga MH2 Rare 27.65
Avatar - Aeon Chronicler VAN Rare 26.84
Show and Tell UZ Rare 26.81
Cleansing Screech PZ2 Common 25.4
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.

Black Lotus 1E Rare 247.53
Mox Jet 1E Rare 96.4
Ancestral Recall 1E Rare 87.26
The One Ring LTR Mythic 59.9
Time Walk 1E Rare 58.98
Mox Sapphire 1E Rare 57.09
Liliana of the Veil UBT Mythic 55.21
The One Ring LTR Mythic 53.96
The One Ring LTR Mythic 53.49
Mox Pearl 1E Rare 51.21
Mox Emerald 1E Rare 48.29
Timetwister 1E Rare 43.53
Cavern of Souls UBT Mythic 42.88
Agatha's Soul Cauldron WOE Mythic 42.72
Mox Ruby 1E Rare 41.11
Karakas UBT Mythic 40.63
Agatha's Soul Cauldron WOE Mythic 38.47
Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth UBT Mythic 38.2
Demonic Tutor UBT Mythic 36.91
Orcish Bowmasters LTR Rare 36.15
Dark Depths UBT Mythic 35.66
Breath of Fire PZ2 Common 34.66
Orcish Bowmasters LTR Rare 34.33
Underground Sea ME4 Rare 34.1
Heavenly Qilin PZ2 Common 32.27
Underground Sea ME2 Rare 32.05
Kozilek, Butcher of Truth UBT Mythic 30.87
Reanimate UBT Mythic 30.6
Fury MH2 Mythic 29.9
Armored Whirl Turtle PZ2 Common 29.59
Force of Will MED Rare 28.39
Sheoldred, the Apocalypse ONE Promo 28.1
Ancient Tomb TE Uncommon 27.73
Urza's Saga MH2 Rare 27.65
Avatar - Aeon Chronicler VAN Rare 26.84
Show and Tell UZ Rare 26.81
Cleansing Screech PZ2 Common 25.4

 
In Closing

Special thanks to MTGOTraders and PureMTGO owner Heath Newton.  You gave a young dad a lifeline after Starcity fired me, and gave me a home where II could create what I wanted and let me help and influence a lot of great content creators, Community Cup creators and people passionate about Magic: The Gathering. 

To Marie, thank you for taking care of the site, fixing problems I could never fix, and making sure that upgrades happened and things went as smoothly as they could.  You work was super valuable and we could not have done it without you. 

To the creators of PureMTGO, you made every day worth getting up for. From the lowest days of my life to the highest you all were here, creating your hearts out and making things that were important to you.  Getting to work with you all to amplify your voices and passions was my absolute pleasure. You all helped me grow as a human. Thank you for letting me be a part of everything. 

I do not know where I am going next, I may never write another article, or I may bet on myself, but the last 16 years have been an absolute blast.  Maybe I'll continue treatment and beat agoraphobia and be back at my local game stores, or maybe I'll just get a better kitchen table and have fun with that, but I do know that as long as MTGO is up and Daybreak is still doing work, you'll see me on the client, just having a great time. 

I do regret not taking my mental health more seriously.  The panic attack I had from potentially getting on a plane in the Louisville airport that caused me to miss my own Community Cup really upset me and I tried to bottle that up for a long time. 

Godspeed, and take care. 

This series was an ongoing tribute to Erik “Hamtastic” Friborg.  We all still miss you Hammy.