Rewind$4.94 (-79.19%)
Rowan, Scion of War$3.99 (+66.25%)
Food Chain$30.75 (-37.17%)
Sheoldred's Edict$4.69 (-34.86%)
Angel's Grace$2.00 (-33.33%)
The Girl in the Fireplace$10.00 (-33.33%)
The First Sliver$39.99 (-32.79%)
Jeska, Thrice Reborn$13.97 (-30.15%)
Rampant Growth$16.63 (-29.95%)
The One Ring (Borderless)$49.00 (-26.54%)
Mass Hysteria$14.97 (-25.15%)
Questing Druid$3.74 (+24.67%)
Solphim, Mayhem Dominus$8.00 (-23.52%)
Preordain$2.59 (+22.17%)
Alluring Scent$2.72 (-22.06%)
Serum Visions$2.76 (-21.81%)
Rakdos Signet$2.02 (+20.96%)
The Locust God$4.19 (+20.06%)
Inquisition of Kozilek$9.59 (+19.88%)
Mountain (1363)$6.43 (-17.35%)
Mountain (1365)$6.43 (-17.35%)
Mountain (1367)$6.43 (-17.35%)
Treebeard, Gracious Host$5.31 (-17.03%)
Kellan, the Fae-Blooded$3.50 (+16.67%)
Slip Through Space$6.25 (-16.67%)
Gaea's Blessing$5.01 (-16.50%)
Seething Song$2.56 (+16.36%)
Forest - Innistrad Cycle$3.49 (+16.33%)
Hallowed Haunting$19.49 (+15.60%)
Fleshbag Marauder$8.47 (-15.30%)
Mirror March$2.05 (-15.29%)
Ondu Spiritdancer$14.04 (+15.27%)
Swamp (1384)$12.41 (-15.12%)
Forest (1386)$12.41 (-15.12%)
Mountain (1385)$12.49 (-14.57%)
Island (1383)$12.49 (-14.57%)
Blood Artist$2.29 (+14.50%)
Abu Ja'far$43.54 (+13.95%)
Flamekin Harbinger$7.80 (-13.24%)
Grim Hireling$3.60 (+13.21%)
Selfless Savior$2.92 (-12.57%)
Plains (1382)$12.94 (-11.49%)
Spirit Mantle$2.53 (+11.45%)

History, Restapled - The Wilds Bunch

05 Sep
by Steve Heisler

Welcome back for another History, Restapled, a Commander-focused column that attempts to validate a newer card’s status as a staple by looking at how cards that are similar, synergistic, or competing have fared in the past financially.

Wilds of Eldraine looks to be chock full of goodies—some of the most exciting cards for Commander in recent memory. And, as of the set’s pre-release, they’re Commander-legal. Here are a few that caught my eye due to their playability and potential to grow in value, with the caveat that many prices are still settling.

Lich-Knights' Conquest

Holy hell, does this card seem busted or what? It requires a bit of a board state already, but not necessarily one flooded with creatures—though it certainly doesn’t hurt to have a few spare Saproling or Soldier tokens putzing about. If you can get the reanimation count up to three or more, you’ve exceeded the rate Animate Dead, a super staple, provides. Later in the game, when spare Signets abound, this is a one-sided game ender for the mana value of Living Death. And, even at its price upon release, it’s sitting at less than $1. It doesn’t grab creatures from your opponents, but odds are if you slide this card into your deck, you’ll have plenty of corpses to resuscitate.

Mass reanimation effects exceed Lich-Knights’ Conquest in both mana value and price. Rise of the Dark Realms, a seven mana spell printed in Magic 2014 (M14) and Jumpstart, is $17 and hasn’t dropped below $10 since 2019. Command the Dreadhorde, at six mana, is less than $1 but requires a fair amount of life to go wide; later in a game of Commander, it’s likely easier to find a handful of tokens or spare non-creature permanents than it is to pay 12-18 life. The aforementioned Living Death ranges from $3-$10 over multiple reprints and can occasionally bite players in the behinds if an opponent’s graveyard is stocked.

Lich-Knights’ Conquest is only going to get better over time, as stronger graveyard-based cards get printed, and at its current price is practically being given away. It’s a worthy bulk bin purchase and one you’ll be glad you grabbed.

STATUS: It’s a staple, on a steel horse they ride, and it’s wanted, wanted, dead or alive

Bramble Familiar

To the surprise of no one, Adventure cards make for powerful and flexible additions to any Commander deck with the color identity to run them. Many of the new ones fall under multiple color identities, but Bramble Familiar can slot into any deck running green, regardless of what other colors the deck carries. As a two-mana dork, it’s worse than Tangled Florahedron (one of the best), but better than most of the ones with one toughness or those requiring a few jumps through hoops to produce more than one mana at a time. But, of course, Bramble Familiar contains far more lines of text, the sum of which adds up to a resilient reanimation engine that puts permanents right onto the battlefield from the graveyard—in green, no less. It’s also rare in that it enables players to recast the Adventure mode even after the card is on the battlefield.

The price of Bramble Familiar is less than $0.50 and continues to drop. Other great two-mana dorks can’t boast this level of affordability; Biophagus, another banger, is roughly $5, and Bloom Tender is sitting around $11. Hell, even Lotus Cobra, a more niche but still strong option, is $3 after many reprints. It might go without saying, but none of those other cards can bounce themselves or save a monstrous creature from the clutches of the graveyard. Expect Bramble Familiar to find its way into a large variety of decks for its adroitness and potential to set you far ahead of your opponents in card advantage.

STATUS: Elemental-y, my dear staple

Woodland Acolyte

Here’s another Adventure that combines multiple effects across cards into an essential Selesnya toolbox. At its floor, Woodland Acolyte operates as a slightly lesser Reclaim or Priest of Ancient Lore, both modes of which are playable, but it also reads like an Eternal Witness for 2WG that can be cast in stages over the course of a turn for the financial cost of 1/8th of a load of laundry. Sure, both Eternal Witness and its partner Timeless Witness are cheap, but Woodland Acolyte offers redundancy with a particular fondness for blink decks looking to simply draw cards.

Status: Can I get a witness?

Lich-Knights' Conquest
Bramble Familiar
Woodland Acolyte

Release the (Cardboard) Crack-en

With so many playable cards in Wilds of Eldraine, it might become hard to track how all of them are being used in Commander. Please share your experiences with me! You can find me on Twitter with the handle @steveheisler or on Bluesky under the same name. In particular, it would be helpful to know which cards have underperformed against expectations. I have my suspicions of a few, but more field testing is required. Until next time…hope everyone had a great Labor Day weekend!

Check out these other articles:

Keep Rowan, Rowan, Rowan, Rowan. SCION! by Jason Alt

Competitive MTG Finance #1 - Wilds of Eldraine and Bowmasters by Edward Eng

Modern Times - Rakdos Scam, and the Unbanning of Preordain by Corey Williams

Steve Heisler
Steve Heisler

Steve Heisler is a writer and pop culture journalist covering comedy, games, television, film and the tech industry. His work has been published in Rolling Stone, GQ, Variety, The AV Club, Fast Company and the Chicago Sun-Times. He began collecting Magic cards during Fourth Edition and plays Commander and Modern primarily. He also enjoys tennis, the Dark Souls family of video games and supporting live comedy. He lives in Chicago with his cat, Rosie.

More from Steve Heisler:

History, Restapled - True Value

Steve's back to give you more fresh picks for the coveted status of "Commander Staple." This time he's looking at Wilds of Eldraine and Lord of the Rings.

History, Restapled - Lands, Ho; Prices, Low

History, Restapled is giving you a 2-for-1 (actually more like a 10-for-1) with this look at several cards from Lord of the Rings and Commander Masters.

History, Restapled - In Full Swing

History, Restapled is back with a few more picks aiming for the Swingline, including some goodies from LOTR, and an underappreciated card from New Capenna.

Rising of the DayTaunt from the RampartAerial Extortionist

History, Restapled -  Un- For the Money

We're once again checking the staple status of recent cards, with this latest installment of History, Restapled. Here we're looking at one LOTR card, and a few from Unfinity.

Champions of Minas TirithExchange of WordsStrength-Testing Hammer

History, Restapled - Walkers This Way

History, Restapled gives you the scoop on the walkers from All Will Be One. Staples or bulk bin?

The Eternal WandererTyvar, Jubilant BrawlerElspeth, Sun\'s Champion

History, Restapled - Tills, We Meet Again

Steve's back and answering that age-old Commander question: Is it a staple?

Tiller EngineStaff of the StorytellerTiller of Flesh

History, Restapled - March to the Beats

On this edition of History, Restapled, Steve digs into March of the Machine to dash our hopes on one card, then perk us back up with two others.

Wrenn and RealmbreakerKami of Whispered HopesDrana and Linvala

History, Restapled - No Warhammer Time Like the Present

Steve is back, and he's demystifying the staple-status of a few Warhammer 40K cards. Do these cards belong in your Commander decks? Come find out!

Bone SabresPrimaris EliminatorAssault Intercessor

History, Restapled: A Mother’s Love and a Land Reborn

Steve is back to look at some recent cards that are ripe to become favorites of the Commander format.

Skrelv, Defector MitePerennial BehemothConduit of Worlds

History, Restapled: Power Creep Before Dollar Creep

On this edition of History, Restapled, Steve takes a look at some sleepers from recent sets that you should reconsider.

Gix\'s CommandBrazen Cannonade

The information presented on this site about Magic: The Gathering, both literal and graphical, is copyrighted by Wizards of the Coast (a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc.), which includes, but is not limited to, card images, the mana symbols, and Oracle text.
This website is not produced, endorsed, supported, or affiliated with Wizards of the Coast.

Original Content 2023 MTGStocks
Nothing on this site constitutes professional and/or financial advice. Always do your own research