Eternal value

"Preying on the weak" works all the time.

It is no secret that it has become more difficult to make a profit with Magic finance over the years. When the player numbers started to rise significantly six years ago, the surge of new players turned everything into a great investment. Unopened displays, Modern cards, Legacy cards, Vintage cards, Commander cards – you didn't need a lot of expertise for your collection to increase in value, as the demand was just so much bigger than the old print runs. With adjusted print run sizes, lots of reprint sets, and more options for cosmetic diversification, you need to be more selective with your purchases nowadays, if you are aiming to make your hobby less expensive, or to even earn money with clever trading and timing your purchases and sales correctly.

One thing that still works is buying well-established recently reprinted cards when they have reached their temporary bottom price, and waiting for their prices to recover before getting out again. You can never be completely sure that your investment won't be hurt by metagame shifts, or unexpected additional reprints, but if you are aiming for older formats those become less likely.

Eternal Masters may become a bi-yearly institution like Modern Masters, but even if it does, the next EM set (EM18?) would not contain the same cards as EMA did. Masterpieces won't effect non-foil prices, making them irrelevant for your considerations as well. Most EMA prices have stabilized by now, so it is time to pick up your favorite cards, put them in a treasure chest and bury that chest in a secret location for 1-3 years.

Which cards should you prefer? That depends on your budget and on your aims. If you would like to use those card to “trade up” for expensive cards in the future, you should pick more expensive cards, but uncommons and low price cards could easily see better percentual growth rates. The best case scenario is to buy cards you would actually like to play with. After all, I heard Magic is a game as well.

EMA gave us multiple cards for various well-known and successful archetypes. Maybe you want to test a new Legacy deck, play it for a while, but even extract monetary value from those cards after having a good time with them. Here are some of the EMA cards (presorted by archetypes) that I expect to be significantly more valuable in a few years, as they are tournament staples and have been tanked by their reprint to their current temporary low point.


Animate Dead


Shardless Agent

Baleful Strix

Hymn to Tourach

Green Sun's Zenith

Deathrite Shaman


Maze of Ith

Vampiric Tutor

Chain Lightning

Swords to Plowshares

Wall of Omens

I like more than these cards from EMA, but my other picks are still trending downwards, and should be revisited at a later point in time.

4 Commenti

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MKM-Insight(17.10.2016 15:30)

I dont think this format will ever exist. It would not benefit Wizards revenue. The next format that will be made at some point in the future will be smaller than Modern, not larger.

House-of-Cards-OE(13.10.2016 22:53)

Do you think that is is possible to introduce a new format? In forums etc people discuss about a legacy like format with every card in reserved list being banned. Under the lens of this perespective cards like Deathrite Shaman, Chrome Mox, Green Sun's Zenith, Jace TmS which are banned in modern they will suddenly become widely playable. If that happens (a huge IF) these cards will be format staples and everyone will want to acquire them. Just take into consideration that EMA and Conspiracy 2 have offered most of the non reserved legacy staples back to market in reasonable prices. Most of the above listed cards didn't need a reprint, their prices were in chronical low levels and not that much playable. Jace is a 2of in 1-2 decks for example and there were already enough copies from the Worldwake and ftv 20. Entomb is playable in 1 deck and there were copies from Odyssey, Graveborn, Judge Promo.
So what i think is that we should focus in long term investments with high RoI payouts.
Shocklands are limited playable in Modern but if a new format is introduced they will spike in price and demand, as Dual Lands will be banned.
Maybe this way of thinking is totally wrong, but by buying playsets of shocklands, deathrites , chrome moxes , etc it is not that risky.

MKM-Insight(11.10.2016 15:58)

Just because cards are Modern legal doesn't make them Modern Masters material. They were reprinted already in EMA and exactly that makes them extremely unlikely to show up in MM17.
Wizards pick their reprint material wisely, as they don't want prices to crater either. They wait for cards to become scarce and expensive, reprint them, wait for them to rise again, reprint them again, and so on - ad infinitum.

Wall of Omens was selling for 6-7 Euros before the reprint. Now they are at 1,50€. How can you not believe them to go up again in the next 2 years?
Entomb was 25€, now it is 10€. The argument is that these are desirable cards close to their temporary low point, but feel free to stay away from those cards. Not every suggestion is for everyone.

IrenicusShadow(10.10.2016 18:19)


you wrote about Eternal Value and some cards zu buy... And yes Gamble, Vampiric Tutor, Maze, and Hym seem to be reasonable buys - as mana vault, sneak attack and Force of Will and Natural Order.
Cards to strong for most reprints like Duel Decks and Commander Sets - sometimes even banned in this format.

But Deathrite Shaman (at this point banned in modern, but may be unbanned sometime) and wall of Omens? Modern Masters Material?

Daze, Swords, Animate Death, Entomb - Duel Deck cards to be? Now that even Crop Rotation managed it to be in such a Set?

Strix and Agent - Born in commander?

I'm not sure that this cards will ever return any value - maybe as foils?!