Hold ‘Em & Fold ‘Em #18

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Wizards hit us this week with the Ultimate Box Toppers that go along with Ultimate Masters that will be released December 7. While the new artwork on a lot of the cards is incredible, the reprints in this set will ultimately lead to a significant drop in prices.

As a result, I would like to say this in a way that sounds the least like gloating; but I suggested dumping Engineered Explosives back in July in article #2. And just last month, I highlighted the creature lands from Worldwake as Folds in article #15. So going forward, always be mindful of potential reprints.

However... since this article is focused on the following points, it is fine if you kept a playset of these cards because you needed them for tournaments. But if you were not using them or had extras, you certainly could have taken the opportunity to get rid of these cards before the reprint news happened.

Article Series Main Focus Points

  • Cards that you should hold on to or pick up for tournaments if you need them before they rise in price. These cards are either seeing increased play in one or more formats, the supply is drying up, or they’re pretty far from the next reprint.
  • Cards that you should consider selling or trading away. Their prices are pretty much at the ceiling owing to inflation from speculation, reprint inevitability in the near future, a lull in tournament play, or some combination of these.


Damping Sphere - Dominaria (Foil)

Target Purchase Price

While many people are still focused on Guilds of Ravnica and Ultimate Masters now, this is the time to start picking up foil versions of these since they have kind of flatlined the last few months and even started to drop a little bit more. But here’s the reason to start picking these up now.

Look how many different decks that is. And look at the number of times it shows up in those decks. That’s a lot. It will also probably be a while before this is reprinted, since Dominaria is still in Standard. The demand for this card is pretty high because different decks play this card in multiples. And it is colorless, so it can go in any deck.

Glimmervoid - Mirrodin & Modern Masters (Non-Foil)

Target Purchase Price
Under $10

This is another one of those cards that gets better over time as more cards, specifically artifacts, are printed. But things have turned much more interesting for this card owing to the recent Ultimate Masters news. I would keep a close eye on the set to see if it gets reprinted or not. If it does not show up in the set, I would pick these up if you do not have them.

It mainly pops up in Affinity, but sometimes shows up in other popular decks like Lantern Control and Ironworks Combo.

Unmoored Ego - Guilds of Ravnica (Foil)

Target Purchase Price
Under $5

This is another card to keep an eye on. It’s still very new since it is from Guilds of Ravnica. But it has been popping up in some non-Standard lists already...most notably, Antoine57437’s Abzan Value list.

Although this really isn't a top-tier deck, we can see that the card is an upgrade compared to cards like Lost Legacy because it can hit lands, including lands. And the three mana is much better than Memorcide or Slaughter Games’s four. Thus, this is definitely a card that people will consider moving forward.

Spellstutter Sprite - Modern Masters (Foil)

Target Purchase Price

Lorwyn foils and FNM promos have already spiked. So, if you are looking for these, this version is a pretty good option. This card is crazy popular in Pauper. Just take a look at these numbers!

Delver decks are arguably some of the best decks in the format. Take a look at Mezzel’s Mono-Blue Delver list.

This is probably something a lot of people know about already. However, Yuta Takahashi’s Faeries list that came in 13th at Grand Prix Atlanta might not be so well-known. Take a look at his newest take on Modern Faeries.

Bitterblossom, Snapcaster Mage, Liliana of the Veil, Creeping Tar Pit, and Engineered Explosives will be reprinted in Ultimate Masters too, making this deck slightly cheaper if you want to play it.

Another card to keep on eye on is Hero's Downfall, specifically the promo version. While Assassin's Trophy may have taken some of its market share, it is still a card that is played in almost 20,000 decks in EDH/Commander.


Carnage Tyrant - Ixalan (Non-Foil)

Target Sell Price

If you have these and aren’t playing with them, sell into the demand. This card is running rampant in Standard right now, which is why Star of Extinction has spiked.

However, I would probably keep any foils you have since it sees play in Primeval Titan decks in Modern like Gruul Scapeshift, Amulet Combo, and Through the Breach. Not to mention, decks like these that also play Anger of the Gods are in a pretty decent spot with all the Dredge running around these days. Yoshihiko Ikawa also had two copies in his Tron sideboard from Grand Prix Atlanta.

Karn Liberated is also getting a much needed reprint in Ultimate Masters, giving more people a chance to get into Tron if they want.

Recent Buys

Mass Hysteria - Mirrodin (Foil)

Purchased Price
$5.99; Lightly Played

I mentioned this card as a Watchlist item in article #16. This is still a card for the deck brewers out there. But I decided to pick up a playset because Card Kingdom is buying these for $6 cash. I could just get rid of them if I decide I do not want them anymore. But if something formulates with this card, at least I have a foil set I can play with.

Serum Powder - Iconic Masters (Foil)

Purchased Price

I marked this card as a Hold in article #8 and decided to buy a playset now. It is still popping up in Colorless Eldrazi lists, and I think it can pretty much only go up in price from here. One of the key things about this card is that it always shows up as a four-of in order to maximize the power of its ability. Take a look at Francusaurelius’s list for reference.

Another card to consider picking up is the League promo version of Zhalfirin Void since it sees play in multiples in various decks.

And do not forget about Gemstone Caverns. I listed this as a Fold in article #14. This could easily show up in Ultimate Masters. If you have these and do not need them, I would dump now.

Cloudpost - FNM Promos

Purchased Price

Here is another Legacy card. And I am not sure if we will ever see this card break out in anything other than Legacy. But I just recently realized that there is a promo version of this card and it is pretty cheap, so I decide to pick up a playset.


The Antiquites War - Dominaria (Foil)

Observed Price

This card is starting to show up more in Legacy Artifact decks on Magic Online since you can use it with Force of Will. Take a look at Ark4n’s list for example. But Legacy really is not supported enough to drive demand. We would have to see it show up more in something like Affinity in Modern or some new build; possibly some Tezzeret style deck.

Public Spreadsheet

Stay up to the minute on what I’m looking at on a daily basis via the Hold ‘Em & Fold ‘Em - Public MTG Finance Spreadsheet. Don’t forget to bookmark it, because I update it on the fly so you can see what’s going on as the market moves and before articles about certain cards are published.




Recent Buys


Public Spreadsheet

Hold ‘Em & Fold ‘Em Spreadsheet

Let me know what you think in the comments below. Agree? Disagree? Why? You can also connect with me on Twitter at @edwardeng. I’m also open to suggestions on how to make this series more valuable. Hit me up.

Have fun,

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