Insider: [MTGO] Portfolio Reviews

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It's been two months since I started writing this column. Today I'm going to review the specs I have suggested so far, then talk about future opportunities.

Let's start with a number: 22.14%. That is the average profit percentage of all the specs I suggested in my past articles (based on MtgoGoldfish data, and including Deathrite Shaman). Different events had opposite effects on those specs, but things have turned out pretty good overall. I hope you were also able to generate some profits off these calls.

Let's see how it worked out...

Modern Positions

Modern, Modern and Modern again. Need more proof that this format is by far your best friend in the world of MTGO investments?

The vast majority of the targets in my previous articles were Modern cards. If one thing is certain when it comes to Modern, when prices are low you know there's opportunity, and prices will eventually go up--next season, next GP, next PT or the next random event that sheds light on a specific card. With no rotating sets nor sudden changes of the metagame, no positions are more predictable than Modern ones.

Whatever you did or did not do with your Modern specs, remember that the goal was to acquire good opportunities for the next Modern season, between April and June. Selling after a big and unexpected gain is totally fine and allows you to make tix available sooner than expected. Don't worry now about the other cards that didn't move or are going down; their turn as not just come yet.

The Ban List Announcement

A "nice surprise" came with the banning of Deathrite Shaman and the unbanning of Bitterblossom and Wild Nacatl. Several cards got a nice boost, including Knight of the ReliquaryVengevine and Gifts Ungiven.

At this point, I have sold my copies of Knight of the Reliquary at 4.9 tix and my Vengevines for 15.3 tix each. I'm still waiting for Gifts Ungiven to gain a little bit more. Unfortunately, the latter did not benefit from the PT results.

Pro Tour Valencia

As I'm writing these lines, I don't know who will win the PT. My bet? Splinter Twin.

However, with the Top 8 already locked in, here are the observations I make:

  • The Top 8 decks: UWR, Storm, Pod, UR (Blue Moon), 2x Splinter Twin, Affinity, Another Splinter Twin? A good variety of decks shows the B&R changes did their job and eradicated Jund. Concerning the other part of the ban list announcement, not much to see.
  • No Zoo in the Top 8, barely one aggro deck. And despite a strong presence at the beginning of the PT, it seems like all the other strategies totally crushed the cat's much heralded comeback.
  • And a big zero Bitterblossoms! Overall, the faerie enchantment didn't do good at all--if you hold any I would strongly suggest selling. As some predicted, Faeries is not strong enough in Modern, and it seems like Bitterblossom is not as scary as thought.
  • No Gifts decks. Surprising, considering that Gifts control decks are an established, albeit minor, part of the metagame.
  • The PT results remind me of PT Philadelphia (the first Modern PT), before Deathrite Shaman made Jund a house. Looking for some insight of how the Modern format is going to evolve? Maybe we should take a look at how the format evolved after PT Philadelphia.
  • A couple known archetypes stayed a bit under the radar: Tron, Scapeshift and Merfolk. Cards from these decks might be interesting targets.

The PT is a single event dominated by pro strategies. The MTGO Modern world is known to be a little bit different. Expect to see a wide variety of different decks having their share of play online. Any cards that didn't shine at the PT are potentially good pick-ups if their price is low enough.


The finish line for my Modern investments is around April to June. If a specific card reaches its peak sooner than expected, or if it benefits from a tournament appearance to jump through the ceiling, I'll seriously consider selling it.

Amulet of Vigor is a perfect example from the recent PT results. I sold them into the hype this weekend, and I'm not sure if 2+ tix is sustainable considering the deck's results and its presence on MTGO before, e.g. fringe appearances.

As for the cards that haven't shown any strength so far (Mindbreak TrapIona, Shield of Emeria, Lotus Cobra and many others), they still have two or three more months to go.

Speaking of Mindbreak Trap, did you see how successful the Storm/Pyromancer deck was? (It is probably a good time to sell your Pyromancer Ascension by the way.) Mindbreak Trap is an answer almost every Modern deck can play, and its price have been dipping a little bit more during the BnG events. This is a mythic with a 15-20 tix potential and with Legacy applications. You may want to (re)consider it.

New Additions

Considering the PT results and some price drops due to BnG release events, some cards I mentioned in my previous articles might still be attractive now, perhaps even more so.

Want to know more about potential Modern targets these days? Check the Modern index on MtgoGoldfish and sort them by Weekly Biggest Losers. You'll find which cards have recently dipped significantly, which should constitute a good opportunity before the Modern season begins.

Two cards that I have been buying recently: Steel Overseer and Lingering Souls. I think the flashback sorcery is a great target at its current price (especially at GoatBots). Among the cards previously mentioned, Master of the Pearl Trident and the Scars lands have returned to a comfortable buying price.

Standard Positions

PT Valencia influenced my picks here too. These cards are Modern-playable and could be more in demand in couple of months. Because they belong to the Theros set, they are more speculative positions than the other cyclical Modern cards. Again, BnG events made these cards cheaper than usual and therefore very attractive to me.

Anger of the Gods and Swan Song were seen on camera this weekend and could see more play in the future. I also picked up more copies of Nykthos, Shrine to NyxTymaret, the Murder King and Soldier of the Pantheon.

I can clearly see Anger of the Gods following the likes of Slagstorm and reaching 2 to 4 tix next year. Soldier of the Pantheon makes me think of Champion of the Parish, with a 2 to 4 tix potential here too.

I'm ready to hold these cards for a longer term if they don't show strength during the Modern season--they still could be Standard contenders one year from now.


Thank you for reading!

Sylvain Lehoux

6 thoughts on “Insider: [MTGO] Portfolio Reviews

  1. Hi Sylvain,

    As always, great article!

    If ask you to list top 10 targets will increase most for Modern season what card will you choose?

    To me:

    Mindbreak Trap
    Gift ungiven

    Anything else could be?

  2. Basically, every playable Modern card (the one that have been in several decks in the past) that is low now, as compared to its highest, is a potential winner.

    To name a few, Master of the Pearl Trident @<1tix, Lingering Souls @<0.2tix, Darkslick Shores @<1tix, Dismember if it reaches 1.5tix will probably be a good pick up too. Snapcaster Mage has probably a bright future ahead, despite being almost at its all-time highest now.

  3. At their current prices or under, Master of the pearl Trident, Dismember, Lingering Souls or Darkslick Shores are good targets for a good increase (in %) during Modern season.

    Basically, anything that have been played in the past in Modern and that is fairly low now is a good target. Multiply your targets and you are 99% sure to generate profits by the summer.

  4. I also invested in Steel overseers, bought about 36~ now at an average of 1.2 tix over the past weeks. Don’t see why it wouldn’t be a surefire rise. Nice article, enjoyed the read 🙂

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