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Investing in Land Staples

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Hello, dear readers.

This week, I'll be talking about some land staples that have very consistent trends on their graphs. By paying attention to these trends, we can make some easy money!

Standard Legal Fast Land Cycle

blooming_marsh

Blooming Marsh is one of the most-played lands in this cycle, as Standard Black-Green decks and Modern Jund/Abzan decks play two to four copies of the card. At the moment, Modern Jund and Abzan have not been showing up in the top-performing decklists, but these two decks are staples in Modern that have 50-percent win rate against the field, so at some point they will reappear in the metagame. When that happens, Blooming Marsh will grow to somewhere between 4 and 5 tix. Picking up a couple playsets for under 3 tix a card should be a nice buy.

Target Buy Price: 2.8; Target Sell Price: 4; Profit per Copy: 1.2

botanical_sanctum

Botanical Sanctum is a four-of in Standard Temur Energy, one of the top five decks in the current metagame. This card has hit 4.5 tix or more at least three times in the past, and it's currently 2.5 tickets per copy. When we are deciding whether to invest in a certain land, we want to think of any other possible decks that will play at least two copies of it. Currently, Sultai Delirium, A.K.A. Sultai Reanimator, with The Scarab God is getting popular, and some version of Modern Amulet Titan is using Sanctum as well. I can see this card going up to 4.5 tix in the near future, and we can probably sell them at 4.2-ish. Its always safe to pick up this card when it's at 2- to 2.5-tix range.

Target Buy Price: 2-2.5; Target Sell Price 4.2; Profit per Copy: 1.7

spirebluff canal

The next card in this category is Spirebluff Canal, which is currently the most expensive land in this cycle. This card has not dropped below 5 tix in the past three months. There are at least four decks in Standard and Modern that play at least two copies of this card in their 75, namely: Standard Blue-Red Control, Temur Energy, Modern Jeskai Control, and Blue-Red Gifts Storm. I don't think we'll see Canal drop in price any time soon, but you can add them to your watch list just in case. Get them when they are below 6 tix and resell them at 8.

Target Buy Price: 5.8; Target Sell Price: 8; Profit per Copy: 2.2

The two remaining lands in this cycle – Concealed Courtyard and Inspiring Vantage, they are less popular and there's lesser room to gain profit:

concealed_courtyardinspiring vantage

If you have plenty of spare tickets and are interested in picking up some long-term specs, these are two that you can consider. However, if you are aiming to gain at least one ticket from each copy of these cards, it's not likely to happen in the next two months.

Cyclical Movement: Creature-Lands

shambling vent hissing quagmire

Of the Standard-legal creature lands, Shambling Vent and Hissing Quagmire are the most profitable ones from the past six months. You can usually buy them below 2 tix and resell them when they are at least 3 tix. This kind of price movement is likely to happen one or two more times before rotation. I'm not quite sure what is going to happen with them after rotation, but since they are Modern-playable (Hissing Quagmire in Black-Green Midrange and Shambling Vent in Eldrazi Taxes), I don't see any reason they will drop below 1 ticket.

Modern Infect

Recently, there's a Sultai Infect list doing pretty well on MTGO:

sultai infect

This deck is probably built to beat the "big-mana" decks in Modern like Amulet Titan, Scapeshift and Tron. It's a bit slower than the green-blue version, which dominated the meta before Gitaxian Probe ban, going more toward control-tempo style. I think this deck is one of the rising decks that is worth investing on. Based on the latest decklist, I suggest to buy in on the following cards:

inkmoth_nexus

Inkmoth Nexus's price went downhill since the Gitaxian Probe ban. Although it still sees play in Modern Affinity, the supply in the market is not low enough for the price to go up again. However, with the Sultai Infect deck appearing among the 5-0 decklists, it's possible that players will start to give this deck a try, and the result is that Inkmoth Nexus will likely to go up to at least 18 tix again soon. I think this spec is pretty safe, because as I said, this is still a staple in the Modern Affinity deck. At 13 tix, it's the lowest price point in the past two years.

Current Buy Price: 13; Target Sell Price: 18; Profit per Copy: 5

pendelhaven

Pendelhaven is slightly narrower than Inkmoth Nexus, only played in Infect and Elves decks as a one- or two-of. As with Inkmoth Nexus, when Gitaxian Probe was banned, this card became almost worthless compared to its previous value. With the deck above appearing in the Modern scene, I see hope again for Pendelhaven. I mean, for a card that has a median price of roughly 16 tix based on the graph, there is a lot of room for the price to grow.

Current Buy Price: 3.85; Target Sell Price: 10; Profit per Copy: 6

Saffron Olive Effects

Seth tweeted earlier that he'll not be around for a week:

saffron olive

This means there might not be any new brews from him until next week.

However, there are a few lands that are very cheap and are potentially used in Saffron Olive's Budget Magic decks or likely to become more popular after the next Standard Rotation:

The Cycling Lands

canyon_slough fetid_pools scattered_groves

These less-played cycling lands are some budget options that we'll likely see Seth use in three-color decks or two-color decks that are in friendly colors. If these lands are used, there's a possibility that they will go up by 0.75 to 1 ticket on MTGO. We can compare these with the other two cycling lands in this cycle, Sheltered Thicket and Irrigated Farmland, which are played in Standard. Based on the others in the cycle, we can assume that when these lands are played in top-tier decks, they can go up to 3 or 4 tix. So, even if these lands didn't increase in price due to Saffron Olive effects, there's still good chance that there are Standard decks that rely strongly on these lands after SOI's show-lands and BFZ's battle-lands rotate.

The SOI and BFZ lands are also very likely to see play in Saffron Olive's upcoming decks, but those lands are rotating in about seven weeks. Minus this week, as there's no Budget Magic, there are only a maximum of six more Budget Magic decks coming out before the mentioned lands rotate. For those specs to be profitable, we will probably need to hit half of them, which is not likely to happen in six weeks' time – at least, I won't be suggesting such risky specs to all of you.

Alright, that's all for this week. Once again, thanks for reading, and I will see you all again next week.

–Adrian, signing out

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