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Unstable Q&A with Mark Rosewater
The Dos and Don'ts of Silver-Border Commander
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Modern Prices Discussion
    I feel as Wizards made a mistake on the foil lands. They are way too hard to come by. I'm beginning the long slow process of foiling out all my commander decks, starting with foil full art lands. Problem is, I don't like any of the BFZ or HOU islands, which leaves me the Unhinged island or the Unstable island. I'm not going to pay $70 per island, and honestly, who is? Maybe for Modern, where you run 1 or 2 lands, but really, foil pimping is for commander, and I am hard pressed to see anyone paying that much for these.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Modern Prices Discussion
    Masterpieces are definitely a great way to spend your money if looking for a long term increase in value.

    These join the Reserve List and Judge foils as cards that can't or won't be reprinted. We have not hit the bottom on these yet, as 2/3rds are still in standard. Look for prices to go up very quickly at a moments notice. I'm noticing the hardcore financial guys in my area snatching them up left and right, myself included.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Modern Prices Discussion
    I use the cards as small investments that I can play with while they grow in value. It's more fun than CD's, and the return is greater. While there is no growth in Noble Hierarch or Crucible of Worlds, there is a lot in Reserve List cards and the Masterpiece series, as well as Judge foils. The rest is just the cost I pay to have a hobby.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Modern Prices Discussion
    WotC will have a day of reckoning for putting Iconic Masters in the big box retailers. I've purchased several from Walmart, and I need to explain to my LGS that this is not an indictment of them, I only did so because I get 10% off as an employee (and for the majority, a special 25% off as a one time opportunity). If I hadn't had the discount, I would not have bought any, anywhere.

    But I am a corner case, and LGS losing sales to, of all places, multibillion dollar corporations has to hurt, both the financial and the 'relationship' side. It's hard enough to stay afloat as an LGS, this will have them screaming up their pipeline, it is very real money taken away from them.

    Expect a backlash from the game stores. I do not know what form it will take, but things have really been hard lately, with the change to prize structure at FNM, Iconic Masters being massively overprinted, and general set fatigue. We've had 2 masters sets in 9 months, and we have another 2 coming in the next 9 months. 4 masters sets in 18 months? Conspiracy, Commander Anthology, regular standard sets, Unstable, FTV (which, from all accounts, flopped hard) the flood is relentless.

    If I didn't know better, I would say WotC is going under. Decipher pulled a similar move when they lost the Star Wars license.

    But I still wonder. If they stopped Masters sets after M25, it would take the market 3 or more years to recover from just Iconic Masters. One can only imagine the damage M25 will do.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Modern Prices Discussion
    The era of investing in Modern is over.

    You can still try it, but remember, we still have Masters 25 in the spring and Eternal Masters in the fall. You don't think Ensnaring Bridge, Crucible of Worlds and Engineered Explosives won't be reprinted?

    No one knows where the chips will fall, but I will say that Zen fetches will be reprinted at least once more, likely in Masters 25.

    The only safe place to put your money is in the three Masterpiece sets, Judge foils and the Reserve List.

    Some enterprising souls have begun to notice the foundation id increasingly being laid for a new format that will likely begin with Origins. Good money being dumped into that in anticipation of that announcement in 2 or 3 years. Cards like Tireless Tracker, Cryptolith Rite, and even Attune With Aether will be in demand.

    But Modern is dead as for investing or flipping. The expansion into Walmart tells me Wizards seriously wants to make Modern cheap for entry - or, they are liquidating all their equity in Modern before announcing a new format - and the 25th anniversary may be as good an opportunity as any. Modern will suffer with a new format being announced, but it will not endure Legacy type dwindling.

    I'm moving my money out of Modern into Masterpieces, RL and new format staples. I'd advise others to do likewise.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on Modern Cheeri0s - Puresteel Equipment Storm
    Cheeri0s, I always felt, had so much potential.

    The deck, as it was explained to me, did very well at GP's, converting to day 2 at an amazing rate. There, it died horribly, because people had better removal, and could counter Grapeshot.

    I'm wondering if we can't shift Cheeri0s off the Grapeshot route. It is harder, but I think it is doable, because Retract works so well.

    Replace Grapeshot with Altar of the Brood. With 4 Retract, we have the option to run the table. There's so many ways it can go, Lab Maniac, straight mill with Sphinx's Tutelage, to using Mox Opal and Paradise Mantle to extend to a Paradox Engine to endure we can cast anything, it seems it opens up a lot more options. I'm not worried about a counter, because anything that stops Altar, stops all the other artifacts. Altar is not going to eat a counter T1 or 2, it's viewed as a gimmick card. Yet paired with Paladin and Mentor, it begins doing twice the work. Altar also gets around Leyline of Sanctity

    The key then becomes protecting the Sram/Paladin and Mentor. While cards like Alley Evasion and Clutch of Currents and others work admirably to prevent removal, I'm thinking Turn To Mist works best, since we avoid having to burn 2 mana in recasting the card. And we never lose an attack to summoning sickness. My build is a bit of a mess, and I've just sold all my Opals, so my manabase is not adequate (I do expect Opal to be reprinted in the 25th Masters set) but so long as Mantle has a target, we can Retract even just once for a win. I'd also love to give those prowess monks haste, just for flexibility in using them as a wincon. And Soul Warden for all those tokens, and....

    I'm thinking this may push past the day 2 doldrums.


    Milling Cheeri0s:

    Lands: (15)
    4 Flooded Strand
    4 Hallowed Fountain
    2 Island
    2 Plains
    3 Windswept Heath

    Artifacts: (28)
    4 Accorder's Shield
    4 Altar of the Brood
    4 Bone Saw
    4 Cathar's Shield
    4 Kite Shield
    4 Paradise Mantle
    4 Spidersilk Net

    Creatures: (11)
    4 Puresteel Paladin
    3 Monastery Mentor
    4 Sram, Senior Edificer

    Instants: (6)
    3 Retract
    3 Turn to Mist
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on [Deck] UBx Mill
    I'm interested in 3 Ghost Quarter and 0 Field of Ruin.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Modern Prices Discussion
    Quote from Joban8 »

    Don't quote me, but I'm pretty sure I remember seeing some sort of Modern/Legacy brew from MTGgoldfish that used a set of Idyllic Tutors. Since every card that dude touches spikes, I'd venture to guess that, being a Morningtide rare, Idyllic Tutor spiked and never returned to baseline.

    Leylines, a win fast or lose fast Legacy deck.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Modern Prices Discussion
    The last, my arse. Eternal Masters 2 will be out in the fall. MM4 the following spring (2019)

    As Lion said, cash cow.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on [Deck] UBx Mill
    Quote from Dosequiguy »
    Visions of Beyond is your most important card and you need to not draw it in your opening 7. Surgical on Rack or Affliction buys time against most draws. Not a good matchup though to say the least.

    Also, most 8 rack lists will have creatures in their sideboard to bring in. If you don't think they are playing creatures then Profane Memento makes no sense either.

    Oops, not Momento, Nature's Claim.

    I'm seeing Visions of Beyond as antithetical to the Ensnaring Bridge plan.

    Right now, I'm thinking removal for Mutavault and the creature they sideboard in. Board out Bridge, keep Trap, because we can Trap them after we use Field of Ruin on a Mutavault. Exile their hand disruption. They will yank them away anyway, so we may as well get a 4:1. I'm thinking save the Extractions for when they play Raven's Crime or Blackmail, etc. but Extirpate needs to be used when we can, lest they strip it.

    LotV wasn't a problem, they milled them all, but if she hit the board, I'd have had an impossible time dealing with her. So, optimal sideboard is: Crypt Incursion out, Ensnaring Bridge out, Cage in, Claim in, Hurkyl's Recall in, and any card draw in. Never even entered my mind to bring in the Recalls. Duh.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on [Deck] UBx Mill
    My list went 2-2 last night.

    Working off a failing memory, I beat monogreen Eldrazi 2-0 in the first round, 2nd round I beat a green collected company deck using elves 2-1, lost to a deck I cannot recollect 2-1, and then 8-rack whipped me 2-0.

    Mesmeric orb made no difference the 1st 2 rounds, and then showed up everywhere in the last 2 rounds.

    Not sure how to go about beating 8-rack. they are the antithesis of everything I was trying to do. Boarded out removal, and boarded in Trap, Cage and Memento. Extracted Rack, Shrieking Affliction still nailed me. Extracted Raven's Crime, still too much coming. That's gonna be a tough one.

    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on [Deck] UBx Mill
    I'm not a fan of Ravenous Trap. I much prefer Crypt Incursion.

    I'm tossing around ideas in my head for a deck that focuses on Archive Trap. Now that we have a guaranteed way to force the opponent to search, I am trying to figure out a way to get a T4 mill out.

    What we need in hand:

    2 Archive Trap
    1 Field of Ruin
    1 Fraying Sanity

    What we have to find them:

    Expedition Map (Field of Ruin)
    Sylvan Scrying (Green) (Field of Ruin)
    Trapmaker's Snare (Archive Trap)
    Infernal Tutor (Archive Trap)

    Bitterheart Witch will get a curse when it dies, but her CMC is 5.

    Stuck right about here. How to find the curse without going white for idyllic Tutor.

    The deck would have essentially 12 Archive Traps and 12 Field of Ruin. Probably need 4 ways to find Fraying Sanity to be viable. I suppose we could run it in a hardcore control shell to get time, lets say 4 Darkness and 4 Fog. Or something like 4 Visions of Beyond, 4 Peek and 4 Serum Visions and perhaps 4 Index.
    I'm more partial to the Darkness/Fog angle.
    Here is a decklist for you guys to critique:

    Probably the Glimpses go for more control and card draw.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on [Deck] UBx Mill
    I knew Field of Ruin would change Mill. It forces a search, triggering Trap. The search is not optional. Ghost Quarter could not do that. Path could not do that. You knock them off a color, trigger a search and thus Trap for 2 mana. FoR is a 4 of. They have to respect it, knowing as long as it's on the field, Archive Trap is a constant threat.

    Furthermore, you do not lose tempo. You still get your land. This is even better compared to Ghost Quarter, where you went down a land, and they went up one, or Path, where they went up a land and you did not. It Revolts Fatal Push - AND gets the Swamp to cast it! I think it ends the Esper debate, as the only reasons now to go white are Ghostly Prison and Disenchant. U/B can give viable alternatives at the same cost, Bridge and Set Adrift.

    I still recommend Snapcaster Mage, strictly for the flashback. The chump block can be nice as well. My current updated list, debuting tomorrow at FNM:

    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on [Deck] UBx Mill
    The best card for that, actually, is Altar of the Brood. It's more an EDH trick to stop Top.

    I've often wondered if Mill could use Brood. Oboro as a land guarantees you will always have at least 1 land to play per turn. Ultimately, Mill just does not have enough permanents. I'd love to make a deck that does.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Complain about Legacy Prices & Availability Thread
    Antiquities, Legends and Arabian Nights saw a massive influx of money, between $20,000 - $100,000 in the last 3 weeks.

    There is more coming. Wall Street has noticed, and even lesser The Dark rares are spiking.

    Right now, I think the money is moving very slowly - picking off a few copies a week to avoid spooking the market and encouraging people to increase the price. Eventually, though, someone is going to walk in with $2 million, and we'll be longing for the days of $400 Moat, $300 Diamond Valley, $1200 Tabernacle. It absolutely flabbergasts me that there are Reserved List cards that are still under $1 each. I'm buying RL cards wherever I can, because the money is coming into Magic, and soon.
    Posted in: Legacy (Type 1.5)
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