Modern Times - March of the Machine
Hello everyone! Today on Modern Times, we’ll take a look at some of the “high-potential” Modern playables unveiled in
In terms of which battles have Modern potential, Invasion of Ikoria is really the only standout. For and , you can snag a non-human creature with a mana value of X from your graveyard or deck and put it into play. When the battle is defeated, it flips and rewards you with an 8/8 that has vigilance. The immediate combo that is abuzz with this card is that for four mana total, you can dig out a
Aside from the obvious aforementioned combo, you can also use Invasion of Ikoria as a means to search out
As of the writing of this article, Invasion of Ikoria’s market price is around $7. Assuming battles have a trajectory both in power level and in innovation on par with how planeswalkers have evolved since their introduction, it’s likely that we will see higher-potential battles in future sets, thus, I would expect Invasion of Ikoria to actually fall further in price as battles continue to evolve.
|Grist, the Hunger Tide|
|Invasion of Ikoria|
Ozolith, the Shattered Spire is not
Simply put, the value of this card in Modern (now and in the future) is entirely dependent on the adoption it sees in Hardened Scales Affinity decks. If Hardened Scales Affinity can make room for this card, then it will almost certainly see a price point above its current level ($7). On the other hand, Hardened Scales itself is only a $4 card, so I would find it hard to imagine that Ozolith, the Shattered Spire falls anywhere lower than that given its substitutability.
|Ozolith, the Shattered Spire|
|Ozolith, the Shattered Spire (Extended Art)|
Wrenn and Realmbreaker seems to be the biggest question mark of all cards in this set that could see some play outside of Standard. For the same mana cost, the static ability of Wrenn and Realmbreaker gives you half of what
The +1 ability turns a land you control into a 3/3 hexproof, hasty creature with vigilance, which has a lot of fun potential. In theory, Wrenn and Realmbreaker could target
Beyond this, Wrenn and Realmbreaker also synergizes well with the core components of decks like Titanshift or Amulet Titan. Some have speculated this card makes Superfriends decks more compelling, especially since you can go turn two
The problem that Wrenn and Realmbreaker has is that for the decks it has the most potential in - namely Elves and Amulet Titan - it's not obvious what one would cut from the main deck to make room for Wrenn and Realmbreaker. Of all the cards discussed today, this probably has the potential to swing in price the most. My guess is that it will fall to around $15 or so upon release, but if it finds a home in Modern, it could swing upward sharply to well over its current market price.
|Wrenn and Realmbreaker|
|Wrenn and Realmbreaker (Borderless)|
Some Concluding Notes
It felt like the Modern format was sort of grasping at straws for playable cards as this set was previewed, but like most things, only time will tell what and how MOM makes a splash in Modern. For now, however, the aforementioned cards are a terrific starting point for speculation.
As of now, most are very reasonably priced compared to the pre-release asking prices for ONE during its spoiler season. This is one of the few sets I’ve seen in the past few years where the cards with the most potential in Modern have bottomed out before the formal release date! That means the only potential is upward from here on out!
Check out these other articles:
New Horzions: March of the Machine by Matt Grzechnik
History, Restapled: Power Creep Before Dollar Creep by Steve Heisler
The Big Things: World Championship Decks by Harvey McGuinness
Corey Williams is an Assistant Professor of Economics at Shippensburg University in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania. He considers himself a macroeconometrician with his research body reflecting work in applied macroeconomics and econometrics. Corey is an L1 Judge who started playing Magic around Eighth Edition. He enjoys Modern, Commander, cEDH, and cube drafting. Outside of Magic, he loves running, teaching, and the occasional cult movie.