Bang for your Buck: Investing in Cards for Dragons of Tarkir – Blue and Black
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. Prices I used are based on the iMTG IOS app, using TCG player.com’s mid-level price range.
Hello and welcome back to Bang for your Buck! Today I’ll be looking at the blue cards currently in standard and what I think will go up and down over the next few months before until the next set comes out. The release weekend for DTK is now underway and green and red seem to be out in force. The only blue decks currently seeing any play are Jeskai Tempo and Jeskai Token decks. People have been testing out mono blue devotion as well as UW/x control decks, but nothing significant has shown up yet. Before we get into what I think will see some movement this season, let’s take a look at the cards I speculated on last time.
Previous Blue and Black Suggestions
- Dig Through Time = I thought it was a good pick up at $7 last time, but it seems like it still has ways to fall. It fell to $6, but I don’t see it going down much further. I think it will see a lot more play in modern and legacy in the future.
- Master of Waves – I said Master of Waves was a good pick up at $3 because of cards in FRF (like Cloudform) and that mono blue devotion was right around the corner. You made twice the money if you bought them 2 months back!
- Thassa, God of the Sea – When I talked about Master of Waves, I also said to keep an eye out on Thassa. She was $4.75 and has since then gone up to $8.25. Another good call.
- Bloodsoaked Champion – I said he would start creeping up and he’s now starting to do so. He’s at $2 now, up from $1.75 last time. He’s seeing more play than just in warrior decks as well.
- Empty the Pits – That was my spec for last time, but it didn’t see much play in control after all. People would rather be playing Treasure Cruise and Dig Through Time in those decks :P. Hasn’t moved from $1 at all.
- Whip of Erebos, Hero’s Downfall, Doomwake Giant – I said to sell all 3 because their price was falling. I was right. Whip and Giant are down 50%, but Downfall is only down $0.50 from last time.
- Thoughtseize – I said to pick them up at $20 and while their price hasn’t changed since last time, could you really feel bad for buying them at this price? This is going to be a great investment for the future.
While I don’t think there is any urgency at the moment, I think it’s a good idea to start picking up Dig Through Time at $6. The card sees play in a variety of formats and its availability will slowly but surely diminish. Yes, Khans of Tarkir was the most opened set of MTG cards ever, but now that DTK is out KTK will be opened less and less and prices will start to creep up again. I expect a lot of KTK cards to start going up again, some faster than others.
Monastery Siege created a little bit of excitement when it was first released into standard. Most players used it for its Khans ability, but the Dragons ability wasn’t totally useless either. I think somewhere down the road in a few months this card could see some real play. At $0.75 I’m fine with buying a play set and sitting on them for a few months. If it sees any play in the future we could triple our initial cost. I’m recommending this as a long term investment.
Cloudform ($0.25) might see more play in Blue devotion decks, but I don’t think the price will go up over $.50. Ensoul Artifact seems like it’s a good buy now at $1.25 as well. It still sees some play in modern Affinity decks, but it could find its way into other decks later on. If you need a playset, get them over the next few months before it rotates.
Frost Walker ($0.25) has seen a lot of play over here in Japan in a variety of decks (Temur especially), and I think its role will become more important in the coming months. This card could become $1 very easily if the right deck rises to power. Pick up a play set now. Stubborn Denial ($0.50) will see a lot sideboard play and I expect UR, Temur, and even UG to be able to easily play it. Counter spells will become important again this year I think, so keep an eye on it.
This is it. This is the last spike Master of Waves is going to have before rotation. It’s almost $7.50 and in these first few weeks of DTK standard he should hold that value. If you don’t plan on playing blue, sell your extras right now. I’m going to hold on 2 two in case these see more play down the road in Modern, but I’ll be selling the others.
Thassa is another card that I don’t see holding her current value of $8.25 for long. Sell while you can. She might see some play in EDH in the future, but I’d get rid of any extras you have now. As with the Master of the Waves, I plan on keeping 2 and selling the others.
I’m an completely dumbfounded that Thoughtseize hasn’t seen any movement overseas from $20 since last time. This card was buy listing for 2500 yen 2 months ago, and it’s not buy listing for 3000 here in Nagoya, Japan. Most stores are selling them at 3500 yen ($30) or more. Grab 2-3 play sets in trade or through Puca trade if you can. Japan knows what’s going on, and the world will catch up in the months leading up to rotation.
I like Bloodsoaked Champion ($2) again in this new standard metagame. BW Warriors gained a lot of new weapons in DTK, and I think he’ll work especially well with the new Anafenza. I also saw him showing up in a new GB dredge build this last weekend and believe he’ll have more applications as the weeks progress. I could see $3 in its future.
Fate Reforged will continue to be opened but I think Crux of Fate ($3.50) will still have some room to move upwards. Thunderbreak Regent seems like too good of a card to not use in standard, and playing it with Crux makes it that much better. I expect UB control to continue to see play, but I wouldn’t put it past Jund (GBR) or Grixis (BRU) seeing play over the next few months either. I expect Crux to inch up to about $4.50-$5 before Origins comes out, but having End Hostilities in the same format will limit its potential.
While I’m not going to push it too hard, I think Soulflayer is a good buy in at $0.80 now. The Chromanticore deck shows how much fun his ability can be, but I think there will be other creatures in the coming sets that will take advantage of him. I plan on getting a play set for under $1 each.
I think Tasigur will hold his value at around $7.75 or so, but we could see another spike from him in April after GP Kyoto. The scary thing about Tasigur is that he can so easily be splashed and has immense value in formats like Legacy and Modern. I expect him to continue to find his way into various decks, and each time that deck puts up good results his value will increase. While this is only my current opinion, I wouldn’t put it past him reaching $10 by the end of June as Modern Masters 2 is released and we have a chance to absorb GP Kyoto’s legacy results. If he drops to $6 he’s an auto buy, but otherwise watch him closely for another spike.
Brain Maggot used to be over a dollar, but now it’s down to $0.25. If cards like Tidehollow Sculler can see play in modern, I don’t see why Brain Maggot can’t (since it’s easier to play). I don’t expect it will show up a lot, but I think it’s worth holding onto your play set or buying one for less than $1.
If you don’t have a play set of Murderous Cut ($.50) then now is the time to get it. It’s so easily splashed and does a great job of killing everything in standard. Black is on its way back and I think Cut could hit $1-$1.50 by summer time.
Liliana Vess ($9.50) is getting a lot of love in sideboards this standard cycle, but I don’t expect her price to stay that high as rotation looms. She’ll still see play casually and in EDH I think, but otherwise I’d start to move any extra copies I have of her and just hold into 1 or 2.
Bile Blight is currently going for $2 and after Theros rotates out I don’t think it will see much play. Get rid of them now while the going is good. Drown in Sorrow ($2.25) is a tough call. I’ve seen it played in modern GB and Junk decks as a countermeasure to decks like Affinity, but I wonder if seeing some sideboard play in black decks will keep its price this high when it rotates. My advice would be to sell them now and pick them up for $1 or less prior to rotation.
Next Time on Bang for Your Buck
I was initially going to just post the blue suggestions, but after seeing how few there were I decided to add on black like I did last time. There simply aren’t enough cards worth investing in for standard. Overall it seems like a good time to do some selling and to get some of the new DTK cards you need or cheap cards from the KTK set. I’ll be back in another few days with my red and green suggestions, so make sure to check back. If you can think of any other cards that might be worth picking up/selling over the next 3-4 months, please feel free to leave a comment down below. Thanks for reading and see you next time.