Bang for your Buck: Investing in cards for Born of the Gods – White, Azorius, and Boros
Disclaimer: I can not be held responsible for any poor decisions I make in regards to any cards you might buy in response to my article. I’m going to post my thoughts and plead my case for each card I recommend, and if you agree then by all means head out to your local gaming store or buy cards online and try to snap up some good deals. I’m basing my information off of months of standard gaming experience as well as prices in my area and how they’ve reacted to the ever changing metagame. I can only hope that the decisions I make are good ones and that my gamble pays off after buying the featured cards.
Welcome back to the BNG edition of Bang for your Buck. Cards from the new set will be going on sale this Friday and prices should remain relatively stable until our first big event at the end of the month, Grand Prix Melbourne. Before that we might have some Star City or other events that will affect prices somewhat, but I think that will just be a taste of what’s to come. Therefore, I’m in no rush to finish these articles one day after another. I should be able to finish them by next weekend though in case you’re wondering.
Before I jump into the article, I’d like to first go over which cards I think will have the biggest impact on standard in the coming months, as well as affecting the prices of cards from previous sets. In white, I think Brimaz, King of Oreskos, Eidolon of Countless Battles, Hero of Iroas, and Spirit of the Labyrinth will see some play in white aggro decks. For black I think Champion of Stray Souls, Pain Seer, and Gild will see some play in reanimator and control decks. Green only has Courser of Kruphix, but I think it’s going to make a HUGE impact, especially for midrange strategies. As for red, Flame-Wreathed Phoenix and Satyr Firedancer should find their way into burn decks, and possibly red midrange decks. Multicolor is going to make the biggest splash though (no pun intended), with cards like Kiora, Mogis, Phenax, and Xenagos, God of Revels.
There aren’t as many cards heading into the tier one decks as they did with Theros, however you should expect a transition of many tier 2 decks to tier 1 status in the next few weeks, as well as some decks from fringe to tier 2. I’ll talk about this more as I speak about investing in the various colors. Well, with that out of the way, let’s take a look at last time’s advice.
Previous White, Boros, and Azorius suggestions
- Ajani, Caller of the Pride – Well, I start off on a good call. Ajani has seen increased play in a number of decks (not top ones mind you, but still he’s more popular now), and his value has almost doubled to about $10 from his previous $5.25. Hope you got yours when he was cheap!
- Archangel of Thune – It was $25 when I said it should hold its value (or stay close to it), and it’s at about $22.50 now. That’s borderline as far as a change in prices, but because it hasn’t dropped to value pricing yet, I’ll say I was somewhat right.
- Angel of Serenity – Well, ouch. I really thought she’d see more play in the previous standard metagame, but she’s actually dropped from $5.80 to $3.80. I think that I might still be ranking her rather high because of how good of a card she was in reanimator when Innistrad was legal. My first miss.
- Precinct Captain – I said that it’s value would go up, and it did (slightly). Its previous price was about $1.50, and now it’s just under $2. White continues to be a strong aggro choice, so I don’t think it will go lower any time soon. Yay, another win.
- Renounce the Guilds – I thought it would go up, but devotion really took off and white decks never gained much traction. It lost about 50 cents to $0.50, so mark up a miss.
- Detention Sphere – you think with so many people switching to UW control that my guess of the Sphere keeping it’s value at $3.75 would have been right on, but I guess not too many new players picked up this deck. Most of the people that switched must have already had the card cause it’s at $2 now. Another miss.
- Supreme Verdict – This card was previously at $6.50, and for a time it did hit about $8 during Esper control’s peak, but it’s gone back down to $5. I don’t expect it to stay there long, but it’s still another miss on my part.
- Render Silent – This was my gamble for Azorius, but it stays unchanged at $0.90. I won’t count this as being right or wrong.
- Assemble the Legion – I didn’t wager many bets on cards in Boros colors to go up, in fact I said this card would hold its value. Well it has actually seen a slight increase in value to about $2.50 from $1.75. This was a nice surprise. I guess I was sorta right on this card.
- Warleader’s Helix – My gamble in Boros was the Helix, but being an uncommon I didn’t really expect it to gain any value. It held it’s value, so I won’t count this towards my total.
My guesses this time around were about 50% correct, but if you acted on my advice you probably broke even. Well, we only have a few days until Born of the God’s release date, so let’s get started.
I think this is the one time I’m NOT going to recommend Angel of Serenity. There is a possibility that mono white devotion will see more play in this metagame, but I wouldn’t bet on it. Angel of Serenity needs a deck that can ramp up quickly in white while remaining powerful, but there has yet to be a competitive deck like that and with Stormbreath Dragon a bigger threat in standard, I don’t think it will go up past $4 much. Ajani, Caller of the Pride should hover around $10 until the next set thanks to white aggro gaining even more weapons in BNG.
While it’s not a big rare, I think Chained to the Rocks will see a lot more play in the BNG metagame and will go from it’s current price of $1.50 to about $3. Red/white devotion didn’t explode during Theros standard, but I can tell you that there are going to be a lot more people playing it in the coming weeks. I won a PTQ with the deck, and Chained to the Rock was a key card in many of my wins. With all these indestructible gods running around too, this will be very important removal. Naya control and RBW midrange also seem to make some gains in BNG, and they could also put upward pressure on Chained to the Rocks.
Elspeth isn’t TOO affordable right now at $19, but don’t expect her to stay at this price for long. UW and Esper control play it as their main finisher, but thanks to new scry lands Bant and UWR control look to break into tier one soon as well. In order to do so, they’ll need Elspeth, Sun’s Champion. I think she’ll head up to about $25 or more within a few weeks.
I’m kind of suprised that Frontline Medic is only $1 right now. He has the possibility of seeing some play in white aggro decks, as well as white devotion, so I wouldn’t put it past him to see some more play in Born of the Gods. He won’t go up too much, but I could see him hitting $2 in the next month or two.
Esper midrange/humans and Orzhov aggro saw a lot more play towards the end of Theros standard, and I don’t think it’s the last we’ll see of it. As I stated above, I strongly believe that white aggro decks will become more popular so look for the Sovereign to hit $3 or so, up from his current $1.25. Precinct Captain ($2) is another card that I think will see more play. He works well in just about every white aggro deck (well, non-selesnya ones at least), and he’d be a mainstay of white devotion if that deck every takes off. I expect him to hit $3 before Journey into Nyx. While We’re on the subject of white weenie decks, I’d also like to recommend Soldier of the Pantheon ($2.50). It’s a mainstay of white aggro decks, but even Saito thought it was good enough to put into the sideboard of his UW control deck along with Archangel of Thune. Now that we have the UW and GW scry lands, he’s only going to see more play. I wouldn’t be surprised if he hit $4.
I got burned last time when I said it would hold it’s value, but I would be CRAZY not to tell you go buy this card at $2 now. When UW and Esper control were the only decks in town using it I can understand the card dropping in price, but now UWR and Bant (GWU) will be joining the control fraternity which means lots of players are going to be looking for playsets of Detention Sphere. Finish up your playset while you can get them this cheap. Sphinx’s Revelation ($20.50) is another card that will rise in value to thanks to the addition of two more control decks. I wouldn’t be surprised if it hits $30 again, but with Spirit of the Labyrinth being played as well, it might be more realistic to say it will hit $25 or so.
Supreme Verdict is another card that I think is a buy now at $5. There are suddenly going to be 2 times more control players out there, so supplies are going to run out quick. I believe it will hit the $8 level again, which is what it was at when Esper was at it’s peak during Theros standard.
Assemble the Legion seems to be sitting pretty at $2.50 now, and there is definitely some potential for it to go up in value slightly if UWR control (or midrange) or Naya decks become popular. I’ll gamble and say it will see more play and hit the $3 mark during BNG standard.
I remember when this guy was over $30, but now he’s down at the much more reasonable price of $12. He’s a great card in Red devotion decks, which could possibly see more play now that mono blue devotion is considered tier 2, but he’ll work in just about any red deck. Red aggro could see a comeback thanks to Satyr Firedancer and Flame-Wreathed Phoenix, Naya could be playable again thanks to slightly better mana, and you shouldn’t count out RBW midrange either. There’s nothing worse than facing down a Blood Baron of Vizkopa AND Boros Reckoner. I think the Reckoner will see a slight increase to about $15, so it might not be a bad idea to trade for him or buy him at this price now.
Next Time on Bang For your Buck
I wish I had time to go through all the colors before the new set goes on sale this Friday, but it’s just not feasible for me this week. I am feeling pretty confident about these choices this time around, but what do you think? Do you think there are any other cards that should be in this list or are their ones you disagree with? Whatever you think, I’d like to hear from you so please feel free to leave a comment below. As always, thanks for reading and look for Blue, Simic, and Izzet by Friday!