This Week in Magic - Week 42

27 Oct
by Jeremy Lichtenberger

We had a somewhat uneventful week, as Modern and Standard are still struggling to establish a solid meta, but unexpectedly we saw quite a few spikes in older cards. It's a brewers paradise out there, so at any moment a random card or group of cards can take over a format. Let's see what kind of movement we had, this week in Magic!

Ice Cauldron

Not that long ago I mentioned Ice Cauldron being the best Commander card you’re not playing, and now it is probably too late to go buy some. While there are a number of ways to abuse this in Commander, I don’t know of anything competitive that is efficient. I don’t anticipate the buyout effects to last too long, even though this is a reserved list card.

Corpse Harvester

Planechase cards usually have an odd premium on price thanks to the amount of product in the system. Corpse Harvester has been up and down in the past, but hasn’t been fortunate enough make the weekly list. For Commander purposes, this is a pretty solid tutor effect/sac outlet, but outside of that environment, this will probably never see competitive play. More than likely this is spiking due to tribal decks.


This is very nearly a fight bear, but at 3 mana Tracker isn’t quite there. In newer formats, this is very lackluster, but in an older only format like 93/94 this thing can pull its weight. Combined with Giant Growth it can take down pretty much any creature printed at the time. Older cards are showing no sign of slowing down, so expect many more weeks and months of seeing them around.

Ivory Tower

I mean come on, it’s Ivory Tower! This was one of the most powerful cards turn 1 back in the day. Nowadays it randomly gets played thanks to the fact that it isn’t on the reserved list and has been printed a few times. This still has game in most any Commander deck, and at 1 mana, it really takes no investment.

Marionette Master

While this isn’t exactly making huge financial waves, it is on an uptick. There are a few combo type decks in Standard that feature Marionette Master as the finisher. While I don’t see this becoming a $10 rare, it is possible to make a decent return just based on the fact of how cheaply they can be acquired. Keep your eye on this in the future.

Treasure Map

Treasure Map plays very well with Marionette Master from the last graph and it also helps smooth out your draws. The flip side isn’t ground breaking, but the treasures that you gain are the real booty. You can use them as ramp, as draw spells or just as combo enablers with the previously mentioned Marionette Master. This probably isn’t good enough for Modern, but who knows?

Foils of the Week!

We had a ton of foil movement this week, starting with a few cards I am fortunate enough to own a bunch of copies of. Early Frost is a card I’ve toyed with in Modern, and if I toy with something, I usually buy foils. Foil Riftsweeper is also something I have sleeved up in my 5c lands deck. It’s a great way to get back exiled cards. Foil Crop Rotation is no stranger to spikes, as it spiked pretty hard before, but this week it has sky rocketed! An ever popular casual card, foil Terramorphic Expanse saw some ups and downs as players try to build efficient 4 or 5 color mana bases on a budget. I’ve always liked the Crypt Ghast and it would seem people are finally moving in on the foils. Lastly, Sunbird's Invocation has been seeing some random Standard play, so it’s only natural the foils would be bought out first.

MTGStocks Mystery Chart of the Week!

Last week we got to see one of Magic’s mistakes in Gitaxian Probe. This week, we’re going deep in the tank for our chart…

MTGStocks Mystery Chart of the Week!

Conversation of the Week!

I’d like to talk this week about how it seems that Wizards has, inadvertently or on purpose, brought brewing back into Magic. Every week there is a list of new brews players have come up with to combat the open meta of Modern and to a lesser extent, Standard. As a brewer, I couldn’t be happier that players can show up to any given event with a labor of love and put up decent to great results. Last weekend we had 5c humans win the SCG Modern event and now it seems that the deck is quickly becoming a contender for being a Tier 1 deck. While this may be a rough time for pros who usually only practice against a known meta, it’s a great time for the average player or grinder who wants to either make a name for himself or prove his deck building prowess.

The best Commander card you’re not playing!

Ulvenwald Tracker I talked about fight bears earlier and this is about as close to a great fight bear as we have access too. In mono green decks, this is a perfect way to deal with pesky creatures in your way. You can bully your way to the top by punching bears in the face!

More from Jeremy Lichtenberger:

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