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Evaluating M10 – Preliminary Valuations Part 2

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As of now, every rare in M10 has been spoiled! No need for fluff, let's jump right on into Blue!

Clone

3u
Creature - Shapeshifter Rare
You may have Clone enter the battlefield as a copy of any creature on the battlefield.
#45/249 0/0

Nothing too exciting to report here. Clone was in 10th Edition and although it's a fantastic card in Elder Dragon Highlander it really sees no tournament play. Bulk Rare, but if the next card turns out to be good, Clone could see some use.

Djinn of Wishes

3uu
Creature - Djinn Rare
Flying
Djinn of Wishes enters the battlefield with three wish counters on it.
2{U}{U}, Remove a wish counter from Djinn of Wishes: Reveal the top card of your library. You may play that card without paying its mana cost. If you don't, exile it.
4/4

Now THAT's a Blue Rare! Strictly better than Air Elemental, Djinn of Wishes is a reasonably-costed big blue flier with one heck of a card advantage engine built in. Granting you three wishes, the Djinn allows you to cheat on spell timing by removing a counter. The only drawback is that you've no control over the card you get, unless a spell like Ponder has set up the top of your deck. There is a world of potential in this card, and the pre-sales are only showing them as marginally better than a bulk rare. This is a pick for a sleeper card, especially if it's being sold as a dollar rare.

Hive Mind

5u
Enchantment Rare
Whenever a player casts an instant or sorcery spell, each other player copies that spell. Each of those players may choose new targets for his or her copy.

This card bends the mind. The truth of the matter is that most blue players are not going to want their opponents to copy their spells. Evoke creatures like Mulldrifter can get around this "drawback", but it seems like this fascinating spell will be relegated to 100-card decks and multiplayer games. You can bet I'll be playing one in an EDH deck, but luckily it won't cost but a dollar at most.

Jace Beleren

1uu
Planeswalker - Jace Mythic Rare
+2: Each player draws a card.
-1: Target player draws a card.
-10: Target player puts the top twenty cards of his or her library into his or her graveyard.

Jace is already a 2nd Tier rare, and he will continue to be one of the staples of card draw in Standard. There is no reason for him to drop below his current price.

Merfolk Sovereign

1uu
Creature - Merfolk Rare
Other Merfolk creatures you control get +1/+1.
{T}: Target Merfolk creature is unblockable this turn.

The new Merfolk lord could be a powerful addition to a tribe that already has some great cards, but his "unblockable" ability just doesn't seem terribly relevant. Compared to the Goblin lord, which will be covered later in the week, it is clear that Merfolk will likely remain a second-class tribe to Faeries. Will have some casual appeal, so it should be a Tier 4 rare in the dollar/2 dollar range.

Mind Spring

xuu
Sorcery Rare
Draw X cards.

Another reprint. Doesn't do much right now, probably won't do much in M10. Obviously you'll love having one in your sealed pool on release day, but as far as speculation is concerned, the card is another low-dollar rare.

Polymorph

3u
Sorcery Rare
Destroy target creature. It can't be regenerated. Its controller reveals cards from the top of his or her library until he or she reveals a creature card. The player puts that card onto the battlefield and shuffles all other cards revealed this way into his or her library.

Ahh! Opposable digits! This Mirage reprint certainly has combo appeal with its Oath of Druids impression, but the best target in Standard will be Darksteel Colossus. Unfortunately, indestructibility isn't the be-all and end-all of protection in Standard that it used to be, so this will probably end up as yet another bulk rare in Magic's best color.

Sphinx Ambassador

5uu
Creature - Sphinx Mythic Rare
Flying
Whenever Sphinx Ambassador deals combat damage to a player, search that player's library for a card, then that player names a card. If you searched for a creature card that isn't the named card, you may put it onto the battlefield under your control. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
5/5

As much fun as the Ambassador Waltz will be to dance, it seems like there are far better ways to get a Bribery effect in Standard. They even reprinted Persuasion as "Mind Control!" A big evasive beater is quite nice to have, but as a Mythic rare it leaves much to be desired. It has zero resilience to removal. Blue decks simply have better things to do with 7 mana, like Cruel Ultimatum. Low-end Mythic.

Time Warp

3uu
Sorcery Mythic Rare
Target player takes an extra turn after this one.

Reprinted from Tempest, Time Warp is a card that always seems enticing but rarely sees proper use. The card will have intrinsic value because of its Mythic rarity and the two magic words of "Extra Turn", but it will be challenging to slot this into a tournament deck in Standard. Regardless, it should see a value above 5 dollars but below 10.

Traumatize

3uu
Sorcery Rare
Target player puts the top half of his or her library, rounded down, into his or her graveyard.

A casual card that always holds its value despite never being played in tournament decks, Traumatize was already in 10th edition. It should keep its value at around 5 bucks.

Twincast

uu
Instant Rare
Copy target instant or sorcery spell. You may choose new targets for the copy.

A reprint that's seen some Standard play in Sanity Grinding, Twincast is a fantastic utility spe
ll. It's currently a Tier 3 rare, and will likely stay that way.

That does it for Blue! To be honest, it looks like Blue got the serious short end of the stick in the rare department. Rumors of the color's death, however, are greatly exaggerated and Cryptic Command remains in the format until October, when Zendikar will bring many more new Blue cards. Unless Zendikar's theme is "uncounterable 1-drop creatures with shroud" and "red card draw spells that cost too little", the myriad of forum complaints about Blue's demise are over-reactions. Don't sell those Cryptics yet! Join us tomorrow when we tackle Black, and one of the more interesting reprints thus far. Your graveyard may not be the safest place to store treasures anymore...

Kelly Reid

Founder & Product Manager

View More By Kelly Reid

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One thought on “Evaluating M10 – Preliminary Valuations Part 2

  1. To be fair, I think a lot of the complaints about Blue aren't that it is "dead" (although there are certainly plenty who have that opinion), but that it is heavily unbalanced compared to the other colors in M10.(the following comments apply to Standard only)Many people respond that most of the Blue power cards don't come from Core Sets anyway, but they forget that M10 is a Core Set unlike any before, because of the new cards. It's scary to think that when Wizards designs new cards for blue, this may be the direction they are headed.Of course, we don't know what Zendikar will bring, and hopefully in a few months Blue will get some power cards. But it sure is disappointing when you've been looking forward for months to what M10 will bring, and you look around and see neo-Crusade, Duress, Lightning Bolt, Great Sable Stag et al, …and there's simply nothing that cool/interesting/powerful for you as a Blue player. Blue's best cards from M10 are cards that are already available in Standard.~Joey Pasco

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