Dragons in Standard: A Quick Value Survey

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Certainly the defining theme of Dragons of Tarkir is, you guessed it, dragons.

Dragons today are an ordinary thing in MTG--in Standard alone, we have no less then forty-two.

But there was a day when dragons were a rare sight and dragon tribal decks were a tough and often mousy build. From Alpha through the Tempest block, there were only 20 total dragons in circulation--most of which were "unplayable".

So sought after was the big red beast, Shivan Dragon, that dual lands, such as Savannah, were readily traded for them, often, I might add, with delight.

Those days are long past, but the theme of the dragon is iconic. And while they excite our sentimental love of high fantasy, are they going to cut it competitively or economically?

Of the total list of dragons in Standard, the top most valued are Dragonlord Dromoka, Dragonlord Silumgar, Dragonlord Atarka, Dragonlord Ojutai, Thunderbreak Regent, and Stormbreath Dragon.

My question is: will any of these make an impact or keep value?

First off, the Dragonlords. I was shocked that Card Kingdom sold Ojutai for more than fifteen. Typically, cards with the effect "deals combat damage to a player" seem good, but fail to hit the mark in practice . Think of Prophetic Flamespeaker, which debuted with promise. Initially selling for $10, it now barely fetches $2.

As for Atarka -- Last week he was worth about $10 and now we find him at $20.  This doubling is undoubtedly due to the fact that he's now featured in a winning Standard deck. Clearly, he's the favored replacement for Polukranos, World Eater in R/G midrange.  Although to be honest, I wonder if he is truly a big game changer in the long run.

Keep your eye on him as he will likely cap out in the next week or so.  But in the long run, I feel that he will fall out of favor. My feeling is, he hasn't the dynamic for Modern and thus in rotation or before he will drop in value.

Like Atarka, Silumgar saw his price nearly double over the past week.  He was featured in B/BU control deck that placed second at the recent Pro Tour.

I will give a passing note on Dromoka, who could see some EDH play. His uncounterable ability is really nice, and it's nice to have a guard up in a multiplayer game, but he's otherwise underwhelming. I think its value will hover or drop below $3 soon.

One interesting note: the foils of these dragonlords are unexpectedly high due to there being the presence a promo version of them only attainable at the pre-release. These are nearly three times the value of the normal card.  Compare the disparity in promo foil and regular foil price with Wurmcoil Engine.

Thunderbreak Regent is an honorable card.  It's being bought for a relatively high amount, with a 35% spread in Standard, and it has seen his value increase in recent weeks.

It backs up Stormbreath Dragon and curves well with other dragons, and a 4/4 flyer for four is never a bad thing.

And, most of all, any reactions to your dragons results in a pleasant bolt to the face--damage that could put control decks into a bind.

With that said, I think his role is somewhat limited since he is tribal and has a $11 buy price right now. It could be a good time to turn him into a shock or fetch land.

Finally, as a closing thought, has anyone else noticed that the dragons look a little like puppies? Especially, Atarka, World Render with his cute little forearms. They lack do the elegance that other tribal contingency: Avacyn, Angel of Hope and her sisters, Gisela, Blade of Goldnight and Sigarda, Host of Herons, which have held their value nicely.


So which dragons do you like the most? Whether strictly for competition or purely tribal affinity, what are the dragons you want the most?

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