Funding a Revolution

With every New Year there is also a new year of Magic ready to get started. The winter set this year is Aether Revolt, and with the final spoilers released last Friday, we can finally start brewing for the new Standard. While I won’t go through every card, I will make mention of some trends I expect in the future and some changes in the near past.

Cards of Standard Past

Saheeli Rai

Wait. This isn’t a card that was played in Standard but her luck might be turning around. It started Friday morning as a $5 card, but soon the entire spoiler brought us a fantastic two card combo.

While Felidar Guardian is an uncommon and unlikely to really cause any real financial gains, Saheeli herself is a mythic rather than an uncommon, and people bought it up. Now hovering around $20, Saheeli has seen a huge increase in price without even having a tangible deck come together yet. I’m going to recommend, if you don’t own copies already, to wait until we see what kind of deck comes together to use these cards. It’s probable and possible that you don’t even play 4 Saheeli Rai, meaning you might end up with a lot of useless copies as people start to dump them.

Wandering Fumarole

Another sweet combo brought to us by the insanity that is Aether Revolt is this two card combo. Unlike Felidar Guardian, without any more help the Crackdown Construct really just does its best The Abyss impression. One Slip Through Space and you could kill someone pretty easily on turn five. Unfortunately that’s pretty slow considering Aetherworks Marvel is still in the format and likely to go off on turn four. This is once again a combo that includes a new uncommon so it’s unlikely to really spike the price. Wandering Fumarole is up approximately $0.50 since Friday but I don’t think it’s as poised to take off due to the combo. If Saheeli becomes more popular it could spike to $10 for a weekend so there’s not really a whole lot to lose to grab your copies now if you plan to play with them.

Pre-release Keepers

I’m sure you’ve heard about the fatally pushed uncommon. It’s clocking at $5 in pre-orders but it won’t stay there for long. After you’re done with your pre-release you should also pick these uncommons from your sealed pool:

These are all pretty cheap cards that could all see a bit of play in Standard or Commander. While they probably won’t be breakout $5 uncommons like Fatal Push, you can still save yourself a few dollars knowing where your copies are. Foil copies of Renegade Rallier will be especially good to hang on to because of how great it is in Commander.

Pre-order Pricing

The general consensus has been pretty low for most of the rares and mythics in the set. I’m not terribly interested in pre-ordering any cards at this point but also I’m not really excited to fire sale anything. I think it’s possible we’re stuck in Emrakul, the Promised End winter and none of the cards really pan out. If you’re not interested in playing the cards right away I would probably hold off on any orders until the first tournaments start happening the weekend of release.

Cards of Standard Future

With all this talk of people trying out new combo decks, I’m really interested in a few older cards to see some price rebounds.

Eldrazi Displacer

Eldrazi Displacer gets a good bump with Spire of Industry able to provide colorless and colored mana. The additional value creatures I posted above plus the fact that the Displacer can keep Saheeli and Crackdown Construct from comboing is icing on the cake. We’re not too far removed from the 4-Color Cryptolith Rite value decks that were good in Standard with the pain lands. It was already pretty good in Panharmonicon deck that Seth Manfield was able to Top 8 GP Denver with late last year. Combined with the fact that it’s also a Modern staple means it’s pretty hard to lose buying in now.

Spell Queller

Spell Queller I think will be on the uptick with all of these new combo decks entering Standard. Spell Queller is already pretty good against Aetherworks Marvel decks but with the new counter spells added it gets even better. Disallow gives you the ability to counter the activated ability from Aetherworks Marvel or the triggered ability from an Eldrazi. U/W Flash was already one of the best decks in the format and it gets a better supporting cast of counter magic to help solidify it as a top player. Metallic Rebuke is a huge upgrade over Revolutionary Rebuff which further helps this deck. Spell Queller is a card that was good before this set and should be poised to get better with the new additions.

My last suggestion is just buy anything from Eldritch Moon you might want to play in the next 9 months. It being the summer set has the lowest supply out of any of the sets in Standard and we’ve already seen it can cause some pretty big price spikes when cards get played. Liliana, the Last Hope and Emrakul, the Promised End are both from this set and are already pretty pricey. It’s possible that Eldritch Moon can support some even more expensive rares and mythics as Spell Queller and Selfless Spirit are no longer at their peak.

What’s exciting you the most about the new set? Are you ready for “Splinter Twin” in Standard again or excited for the new vehicles? Did you pre-order any cards from Aether Revolt? Let me know in the comments below!

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