It’s amazing how far technology has advanced in the past handful of years. Currently my computer resides in a corner awaiting parts to bring it back to functionality once more. I remembered I bought a tiny laptop, nearly a decade ago at this point, so I brought it out to type up this article for you guys. What I figured out is that it’s so slow that I’m better off doing my research on my phone and just using this machine for its word processing capabilities. It’s crazy that we have advanced so far with our phones that this would be true.
Wizards figured out that they needed to break the model for one of their product structures as well. Here’s what info they have given us so far:
“This year, Commander decks return with Commander (2017 Edition) on August 25, 2017. The set features four new tribal-themed, 100 card decks including 56 all-new Magic cards legal in Vintage and Legacy.”
Just like I’m using my phone to write this article, Wizards is breaking their five Commander deck model this year and only releasing four decks. Tribal themes are quite popular with the masses and I’m a big fan as well. Every set that’s released, the writers in the finance community tell you all about why this Dragon or that Zombie and maybe a new Goblin will be a great financial investment because the casual players will eat it up. That’s going to be the same for these four new decks.
What we know so far is next to nothing. Well, luckily for this article, that’s not exactly true. We don’t officially know anything, but thanks to a leak we know that one of the four decks will be Dragons!
As financiers we are well aware how popular the Dragon tribe is with the player population, especially the casual part of the spectrum. I can tell you from experience that I have patrons come in and specifically ask about Dragons. This has happened enough that I try to keep track of what Dragons we have in stock at any given time so I can point out some potential sales to interested buyers. I wouldn’t be surprised if, even if the value of the Dragon deck isn’t the highest of the four, stores have a hard time keeping it in stock.
The next question for me is what are the other three tribes going to be? After the disappointing From the Vault: Angels a couple years ago, I think Wizards may try to right some wrongs and use that popular tribe, but past that, things are a little uncertain. Last year the Commander decks were the four-color variety and 2015 was the enemy colors. We have to go back to 2014, when the mono-colored decks were released, to really get some tribal stuff from our Commander products.
That means it’s likely we’ll get Elves, Goblins, or Zombies. Whatever tribes are chosen, I hope we get some cool new cards with interesting colors. I don’t think we need a mono-white Angel commander deck or a mono-green Elf deck. We’ve had lots of products like that in the past and it’s time for something new.
I think by creating only four decks, Wizards is trying to tell us to expect something new and fresh. The best part about new and fresh is the sales that come along with it, so let’s all hope for an exciting new Commander product. Until we know more, let’s dive into the Dragon leaks and see what we’re working with.
The Ur-Dragon & Ramos, Dragon Engine
Back in Time Spiral a card was released called Scion of the Ur-Dragon. This legendary creature was a popular commander for a while because of its combo potential. This Commander deck utilizes this plot hook and adds some new info with what seems like the marquee of the Dragon deck, The Ur-Dragon. I’m guessing Ur is like his title sort of like the king dragon. I’m not a huge fan of the name, but the card is sweet.
We get a new key word, eminence, which is basically the Oloro, Ageless Ascetic ability applied to more cards. Personally I find this ability to be a bit cheaty and unfair. Everyone else must have their Commander on the field, but with Oloro (and now other commanders), they can just chill in the command zone and you can wrack up advantage by doing nothing. Ranting about mechanics aside, this is obviously a great set-up and Commander players will love it.
The Ur-Dragon’s eminence ability makes all your Dragons cost one less mana and that’s crazy good. Unlike with Oloro, though, you won’t want him to sit in the command zone the whole game. Once he’s in play, you get to start drawing cards when your Dragons attack. Not only that, but, you get a free Show and Tell or Hypergenesis type effect! So you get to draw extra cards and cast things for free every turn. Yeah, I think Commander players are going to love this product.
With The Ur-Dragon as your commander, Ramos doesn’t cost the printed six mana though. He is reduced to a mere five mana. The ability to generate mana might be better suited but the fair thing to do with it is cast a five-color spell the following turn along with The Ur-Dragon. You could also cast Progenitus or any other combo-type cards with your ten mana too! There’s a ton of potential with Ramos but there’s also fair Dragon fun too, and that’s the best combination.
The great thing about these Commander products is that they always produce many options for commanders.
O-Kagachi, Vengeful Spirit
O-Kagachi, Vengeful Spirit will be one of the new options from this product. Despite his terrible name, his creature type being Spirit and Dragon will be fun for some in the Commander crowd. I know I’ve toyed with fun Spirit tribal builds before, so I’m sure others will be excited about this one too. It allows you to get revenge for other players attacking you too, so the players who enjoy the politics of the format will jump on board with this one.
Basically all of these mythic Dragons should hold some value as well. Even if they are only a couple bucks, they should be worth a little and the best ones will draw more demand than that.
Wasitora, Nekoru Queen
The last Dragon on the agenda today is Wasitora, Nekoru Queen. With this Dragon we have yet another ridiculous name, but also a ridiculously cool design.
Cat Dragon? That’s a new one. I guess this is similar to a Manticore but with relevant creature types, so that seems cool. I doubt this commander will be crushing the competitive scene anytime soon, but the fun crowd will love this.
For five mana you get a 5/4 flying, trample creature that makes other players sacrifice creatures. If they have no creatures to sac, you get a 3/3 smaller version of your commander. Seems really fun to me. Not going to break the bank on its price tag most likely though, but any of these commanders are great to have a couple of for the random player who’s interested.
Taigam, Ojutai Master
Last up is a Human Monk that synergizes not only with Dragons but with other strategies as well.
Taigam, Ojutai Master is a huge part of what I love about these Commander products. Not only does it have Dragon synergy, but also combo or control synergy as well.
There are so many different ways you can utilize this commander and if it weren’t a rare, it might be worth some double-digit dollars. You can play it with Dragons to make them uncounterable or you can just play a normal blue-white control strategy with your spells uncounterable. Either route sounds great and will likely lead you to victory. If it cost a mana less, we’d be seeing some eternal play from this guy as well.
So far, none of these cards seem like they will break the bank with their individual price tag, but they look great to generate hype about the Commander decks. What are your thoughts on the Commander applications as well as their possible prices? Let me know in the comments.
Until next time,
Unleash the Dragon Force!