Top 5: Cards to Buy, January 2022

Rone

Welcome to a new edition of top cards to buy! It's a new year, a fresh start, and also an opportunity to review the recent past. Let's start with a brief recap of the best Crimson Vow bargains to pick up, then branch out and look at all the cards that haven't spiked yet. It's time to gear up for 2022!

5. Crimson Vow: Looking for New Blood

At this point in time, we are already familiarized with Innistrad: Crimson Vow, the second of our most recent returns to the Vampire and Werewolfs plane after Midnight Hunt. Personally, I rank it lower than its immediate predecessor regarding the amount of cards that have impacted the game. But that doesn't mean there aren't some good picks with potential. Here are five!

Starting at number five, Thalia, Guardian of Thraben is my favorite reprint from the set—a multiformat staple that sees play in Modern, Legacy, and Vintage. Right this moment is the best scenario to buy them for cheap, now that boxes have been opened for over two months. Getting the playset for less than €15 won't last long, especially if the legendary soldier continues to be a Standard staple for the next year. The Mina Harker and the black-and-white versions are also worth investing in, as they likely won't be reprinted in the future.


olivia-price
Price development: Olivia, Crimson Bride

Moving on to number four, another legendary lady, actually the set's face card, Olivia, Crimson Bride seems to me the perfect target to Reanimate in the months to come. It has a very unique attack ability, it will get better as they print new creatures to cheat into play, and if you see the price trend graphic, Olivia is already gaining value as we speak. Being such an iconic card will only increase its price, so my advice is to grab a couple of copies.

My next pick is Hullbreaker Horror, which after its initial spike has stabilized at around the €5 barrier while being the set's most playable new card across formats: already a Standard staple, with some applications in Pioneer, it is timidly showing off in Modern and Vintage sideboards. Uncounterable and with pseudo-hexproof as long as there are cheap spells in hand, it makes for a tough threat to beat in blue mirrors. For all the aforementioned reasons, think about getting your copies in the next few weeks.


hullbreaker horror reckless impulse

My silver medal goes to Reckless Impulse as the cheap common from every set that ends up seeing more play than initially expected. Basically it counts as a Light Up the Stage for two mana, which comes in handy in almost every aggressive red-based strategy, from Standard Monored Aggro via Modern Prowess variants up to Legacy Epic Storm.

Finally, my choice for the must-buy from Crimson Vow is Blood Fountain, a harmless-looking one-mana artifact that doesn't impact the game when entering the battlefield. But it does have hidden applications! Modern Asmoranomardicadaistinaculdacar shells have embraced it as an extra discard outlet alongside The Underworld Cookbook that in the long run can bring back your payoff creatures. Indeed, Affinity variants from both Modern and Pauper include it as well since it increases the artifact count by two for only one mana, plus the Blood token grants some card filtering. On top of that, it works nicely alongside Emry, Lurker of the Loch.


4. Drannith Magistrate


drannith magistrate

I must admit that my next pick is more of a personal hunch. Drannith Magistrate currently seems underplayed, considering all the recently printed or recently prominent cards that involve casting from outside your hand: Expressive Iteration and Reckless Impulse, rebound spells like Ephemerate, Kroxa, Titan of Death's Hunger, Adventure creatures like Brazen Borrower // Petty Theft, Crashing Footfalls and other suspend spells, flashback, Bring to Light, foretell …

Although this white Wizard can be found in white sideboards especially in Modern (Hammer Time, Orzhov Stoneblade, or Death and Taxes), it should get more credit for what it does for only two mana. It comes from Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths, a set released during the first pandemic year, hence with a somewhat lower supply. Pricewise, it currently ranks as the eighth most expensive card from it, right after the Triome cycle and Lurrus almighty, something to be aware of.

In sum, the Magistrate's unique effect combined with its low supply suggests that I get my copies now that it stands at less than €5 apiece. I wouldn't be surprised to see it go up to €10 per copy in the future.

3. Modern Horizons: Sweet Deals


crashing footfalls echo of eons

Did you forget the original Modern Horizons exist? Admittedly overshadowed by its younger brother, the set still offers some underpriced deals. Don't even think about Wrenn and Six, Force of Negation. or Urza, Lord High Artificer. (Hopefully all the chase mythics and rares get a reprint in Double Masters 2022 later this year.) Instead, check out Crashing Footfalls' hilarious price—less than €1 per copy! Or even consider Echo of Eons, which is mainly Legacy material but still hovers around the €10 mark—cheap for a playable mythic from this set.

Indeed, if you check Modern trends closely, blink decks have been overperforming in the past few months, meaning Ice-Fang Coatl is back on the format's menu, in addition to being a staple in Legacy. I will definitely go for the retro frame version from Modern Horizons 2, though, since its current average price stands at the lowest point of €7.50 and I think I can predict a spike in the near future.

Speaking about green-blue (Simic), there is still a card from the Horizon land cycle that hasn't gone wild yet: Waterlogged Grove still sits at an average price of €6.50! You can find singleton copies in multiple strategies—Modern cascade decks like Footfalls and Living End, Infect or Elementals, plus Legacy Lands play some copies as well. This cycle doesn't look to be reprinted in the near future, and sooner or later the Grove will naturally catch up to its colleagues in price.


waterlogged grove eladamri's call

Finally, another card that is regaining popularity lately is Eladamri's Call. It's a way to fetch for silver bullets in Commander or numerous Modern shells like Elementals, Amulet Titan splashing white, or my favorite, Four-Color Blink featuring Yorion, Sky Nomad as its companion.


All in all, the Selesnya tutor allows you to search for the creature you need the most in every scenario, can be brought back via Eternal Witness, and enables a sideboard of singleton creatures to target specific matchups: Think Obsidian Charmaw for Tron or Knight of Autumn against Burn or artifact decks. The MH1 version's price trends below €5. Despite being previously reprinted in Masters 25, I think this card should be gaining some value as it becomes a staple in more strategies.

2. Drown in the Loch


drown in the loch

Let's make a quick mention of a very well-known removal/counterspell for the second place in this ranking. Drown in the Loch nowadays stands as the most popular card from Throne of Eldraine on Cardmarket, at the reasonable price of €1.80 per copy, way more than many of the set's rares. Aside from being a regular Pioneer tool in control strategies, its presence in Modern has been increasing due to Grixis Death's Shadow's rise in popularity during the last month or so. Shadow now is among the top three most played decks in the format.

Indeed, it's a staple in other successful decks like Dimir Mill and to a lesser extent Esper and Sultai Control. So, just in case you haven't purchased Drown for some reason, get a playset now since this card is one of those uncommons that suddenly spike in price some day for no apparent reason—once the supplies run low.

1. Modern Horizon 2: Ad Nauseam Value

This might be the third time around I am mentioning Modern Horizons 2 since its release last summer, simply because it's the best set printed in recent years. The fact that it has redefined both Modern and Legacy as we knew it (and Vintage to a lesser extent) is telling. However, what amazes me is that there are still plenty of cards at very low prices.


dauthi voidwalker yavimaya

But that won't last long, since draft boxes are going up in price, and game stores are running out of supplies. So if there is some specific card you need from the set, the earlier you buy it the better, at least until Double Masters 2022 spoiler season starts. Which cards still stand at reasonable prices? If you ask me, I will start with Dauthi Voidwalker, which is climbing from its previous €7 average price up to €11 as we speak, followed by Yavimaya, Cradle of Growth with a similar increasing price trend.

Closing up the list are a couple of underrated mythics. First there's Subtlety, the cheapest of the Elemental Incarnation cycle, which sees play in a lot of sideboards, especially from cascade strategies. Last but not least my top pick is Tourach, Dread Cantor.


subtlety tourach

In a Modern metagame defined by MH2 removal in the shape of Solitude and Prismatic Ending, Tourach's protection is a superb upside. Hence it has found a place, not only as a sideboard hoser in both Grixis Death's Shadow and Jund Sagavan. Tourach also has become a main-deck choice to fight the white decks while wrecking their hand thanks to kicker. Pricewise there are some copies starting at €3.50 although the trend is clearly moving toward €6, so it's a matter of time before Tourach's price adjusts to other mythics from the set.


Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not necessarily Cardmarket.



2 Comments

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valerio-sorichetti(20.01.2022 23:18)

I would add Sword of Hearth and Home to the list. It's amazing in EDH and currently sitting around 6€.

Rone
RonePro(16.02.2022 19:08)

@valerio-sorichetti

Thanks for yout comment, indeed I miss some Commander material and that sword is amazing pro its current price.

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