The Top 8 Financial Headlines From Mythic Championship VII

Cassie LaBelle draws her Top 8 finance lessons from Mythic Championship VII, plus This Week’s Trends!


It took a while, but Standard is in a great place for perhaps the first time all season. After months of feeling paralyzed while Field of the Dead and Oko, Thief of Crowns warped the format, it was refreshing to see a Mythic Championship so chock-a-block with diverse, interactive, and skill-testing decks. I was feeling a bit under the weather over the weekend, so I made it a point to watch the entire Mythic Championship while resting up.

I don’t think I missed a single round. It was that good.

Of course, this is a finance column, not a “Chas gushes about the state of Standard for 4,000 words” column. So let’s pivot right into the dollars and cents, and get into the Top 8 Magic Finance headlines coming out of Mythic Championship VII.

1. The Bans Worked. Standard Is Diverse Again. But How Much Will It Matter?

At no point during the Mythic Championship coverage did any of the decks in this fairly diverse field seem either totally overmatched or totally overpowered. This is a marked contrast from the last couple of major tournaments, where cards like Field of the Dead and Oko, Thief of Crowns overshadowed everything else that was going on. We can spend hours arguing about which decks belong in which tiers, but all of the popular decks in Mythic Championship VII remain solid choices for casually competitive players and FNM grinders around the world.

From a finance perspective, this type of Mythic Championship usually leads to a “rising tides lift all boats” scenario. Instead of a single card gaining $30 overnight, like Oko after Mythic Championship VI, diverse fields tend to end up with the overall Standard index seeing small but meaningful gains. This is especially true early in the season, allowing the more value-conscious Standard players to dream about several months of viability for their new deck of choice.

Unfortunately, I doubt we’re going to see the overall Standard index move all that much this time around. WotC did finally get Throne of Eldrane Standard into a good state, but this isn’t October 9th— it’s December 9th. There aren’t many tournaments between now and the new year, at which point preview season will begin for Theros: Beyond Death. If you buy into a deck now, you aren’t going to get much time to play it before the format moves on.

If this were early October, hundreds of people would be watching this event and immediately buying into the hottest decks, like Simic Flash and Jund Sacrifice. Some people are still going to do that, but I suspect that most people will instead be paying close attention to individual cards that are getting a chance to shine for the first time — future format staples that had been overshadowed by Oko and friends. Many folks are going to wait for Theros: Beyond Death previews before choosing a new deck, but they’ll want to snap up the new key staples as soon as they can.

Gadwick, the Wizened

One card that might be on the move: Gadwick, the Wizened. Gadwick had a little hype during Throne of Eldrane previews, but he’s been easily available in bulk bins since the middle of October. That should no longer be true. Gadwick looked awesome on camera all weekend, showing up as a four-of in both Izzet Flash and Azorius Control. This card might not have a ton of upside since it’s not a mythic, but it’s currently sold out at $1 and I suspect it’ll end up in the $5 range at some point soon. Regardless, all serious Standard players are going to need to add a playset to their collections after seeing what it did on camera all weekend. You can’t really lose if you buy in now in the $1-$2 range. 

2. Simic Flash Was “The Deck” of Mythic Championship VII

Going into Mythic Championship VII, everybody knew that the metagame would feature some number of Jeskai Fires, Golgari/Jund Sacrifice, Izzet Flash, and Golgari Adventures decks. Beyond that, things were ready for some metagame-focused innovations.

Meta-tuned decks like Simic Flash show up in every major event, but the fact that all three players who brought Simic Flash into the tournament made Top 8 is unprecedented. Granted, Brad Nelson, Javier Dominguez, and Seth Manfield are three of the best players in the world, but it’s not like this was a field of tomato cans. There were loads of world-class players who showed up with all manner of decks.

Novelty matters a lot from a financial perspective. Jeskai Fires has been a known quantity for a while now, so the fact that it did fairly well at the Mythic Championship shouldn’t affect its price all that much. But Simic Flash? I didn’t see the new version with Paradise Druid and Nissa, Who Shakes the World until Brad Nelson wrote about it on Star City Games late last week. This weekend was Simic Flash’s breakout moment, and that sort of performance generally leads to some pretty major price spikes.

This list might look a little weak compared to the Simic decks we’ve seen running around the format for the past couple of months, but that doesn’t mean it’s not going to be a good metagame call going forward. I wouldn’t be shocked to see more folks taking up Golgari Adventures as a way to beat it (more on that later), but Simic Flash is the hottest deck in Standard right now for a reason. Plus, Simic Flash is a cheap deck to build if you were already playing Simic before the Oko ban. Heck, if you had all the pieces for pre-ban Simic Food, you’re most of the way to Simic Flash as well.

From a speculation perspective, however, nearly all of these cards are known quantities. If you didn’t know that Hydroid Krasis was good, where have you been for the past year? I wouldn’t be shocked if it trends back up a little over the coming days, but it only dropped about $5 after the Oko banning, so it’s not like you were getting much of a discount here regardless.

The same is true for Nissa, Who Shakes the world, a card that hasn’t really dropped in price at all since it was printed. At this point, though, it might finally be time for Nissa to really break through and spike toward $10. Nissa was one of the most powerful cards in Standard last season, and it might even be more powerful today. With very few War of the Spark packs being opened these days, put me on the list of folks who are bullish for Nissa’s financial future heading into the next Standard season.

Nissa, Who Shakes the World Lovestruck Beast

I’m also surprised that Lovestruck Beast is still just $2. The card was all over the place all weekend, and nearly every green-based deck is running a full four copies of this card. We’re near peak supply for Throne of Eldraine, and this is the kind of card that will end up costing you $6-$7 this spring or next fall if it continues to see as much play as it is right now. This is about as no-brainer as a spec gets.

And then we have what I suspect will be the biggest financial beneficiary of Simic Ramp’s startling success:

3. Brazen Borrower Is the Most Important (Standard-Legal) Mythic in Throne of Eldraine—and for Good Reason

Oko’s reign of terror has ended, but has Brazen Borrower’s reign of terror just begun?

The troublesome Faerie Rogue began to spike last week, when the Mythic Championship decklists were first posted. That’s when folks got to take a look at the latest round of Izzet Flash and Simic Flash decks, both of which used Brazen Borrower to great effect.

Brazen Borrower

Granted, Brazen Borrower was a bigger part of Izzet Flash’s overall game plan – and that deck didn’t make Top 8. But it did look good on camera all weekend, and I have no doubt that many folks are going to brew it up regardless. Izzet Flash is also a pretty cheap deck to build outside Brazen Borrower, and expensive “bottleneck” mythics in otherwise affordable decks tend to have a lot of room to run. Combine that with Simic Flash’s absurd level of dominance, and you have the recipe for a new must-own mythic rare.

It’s also worth noting that Brazen Borrower is proving itself an excellent card in eternal Magic as well. Brazen Borrower is all over the place in Legacy right now, but it sees enough play in Pioneer and Modern to color me intrigued about its long-term future. $35 is pretty high for this card, but it’s oozing with upside. The card could hit $40-$45 this week, and if one of these decks ends up being on top of the initial Theros: Beyond Death metagame, it’ll hit $50 no problem.

4. Jeskai Fires Dominated Day 1…but It Faltered on Day 2

Jeskai Fires was the most-represented archetype on Day 1, and it also had the best conversion percentage of the Tier 1 archetypes. This is because it preyed on a suite of Rakdos, Golgari, and Jund Sacrifice decks. Based on those numbers, I was a little worried that Jeskai Fires would thoroughly dominate the tournament from start to finish.

That didn’t happen. Most of the Sacrifice decks were knocked out of the event by Day 2, and Jeskai Fires faltered against Simic Ramp and the rest of the Day 2 metagame. As a result, only one copy of Jeskai Fires made it into the Top 8, and the deck’s overall performance was a lot more of a mixed bag than it appeared to be on Friday evening.

As a result, I wouldn’t expect to see too much movement either toward or away from Jeskai Fires over the coming days. It might see a temporary dip in popularity as more people pick up Simic Flash, but the overall metagame is unlikely to end up in a place where Jeskai Fires drops out of the format’s top tier. If you’re holding onto Jeskai Fires staples, your holds remain safe. Teferi, Time Raveler; Cavalier of Gales; and Cavalier of Flame will continue seeing a ton of play in this deck, as are Fires of Invention and Kenrith, the Returned King.

Sphinx of Foresight

If you’re looking for a sleeper spec out of this deck, check out Sphinx of Foresight. This bulk rare is a relatively recent piece of Jeskai Fires innovation, but the fact that Paulo Vitor Damo Da Rosa made Top 8 as one of the biggest proponents of this tech tells me that it’ll probably be adopted by nearly everybody This deck needed a little more early-game filtering as well as another mid-range creature, and Sphinx does double-duty quite well. $4-$5 seems possible for a card that’s currently available for just $0.50.

5. Sacrifice Decks Were the Biggest Day 1 Disappointment

When grouped together, the three Sacrifice variants (Golgari, Rakdos, and Jund) were the most popular metagame choice heading into Mythic Championship VII. When the dust cleared at the end of Day 1, the results weren’t great. Decks with Cauldron Familiar and Witch’s Oven had a worse conversion percentage than any other Tier 1 or Tier 2 strategy, in large part thanks to the deck’s matchup against Jeskai Fires.

If I had to pick a Sacrifice card that might tank in price due to this weekend’s results, it’s probably Vraska, Golgari Queen. The card has been climbing in price for the past couple of weeks now, and I’m not sure it’s going to end up being a key player in the next iteration of these decks. It sees more play in the straight Golgari variant than the Jund variant — and as you’ll see in a moment, I think that’s where the format is heading.

That said, I’m not ready to write the epitaph for any iteration of this deck just yet. There were a lot of Jeskai Fires decks and Sacrifice decks with similar records heading into the last round of Day 1 play, where Jeskai Fires went 5-1 while Sacrifice decks went 1-6. This led to a lot of Sacrifice decks finishing just below the cut and a lot of Fires decks finishing just above it. This means that the overall numbers are a bit misleading, and a larger sample size would have probably lead to fewer Fires decks making Day 2 in place of more Sacrifice decks.

And even still, a pair of Sacrifice decks did make it all the way to the Top 8 — and boy howdy did they do it in style. In fact, let’s talk about that a little more, because…

6. Korvold, Fae-Cursed King Looked Great

Piotr Glogowski and Miguel Da Cruz Simoes both made Top 8 with Jund Sacrifice, the dominant variant (on camera, at least) all weekend long. Both of their decks ran Korvold, Fae-Cursed King, and I cannot overstate just how good a draw it was almost every time it showed up on stream. Jund Sacrifice still doesn’t have the most consistent mana base, but if I had to build a Sacrifice deck after watching the Mythic Championship, I wouldn’t even consider an alternative version. It’s Korvold or bust.

We’ve talked about Korvold several times in this column already, so you know it’s one of the Brawl commanders and not part of Throne of Eldraine proper. That’s why its current retail price is up to $23 with room to run. Korvold has actually lost a few dollars over the past week or so, but its upside is still pretty massive. Everybody who wants to play Jund Sacrifice is going to need two to three copies, and the available supply is almost certainly lower than most other mythics in the set. I wouldn’t be surprised if someone tries to force the issue and buys out Korvold this week, which would lead to a pretty serious spike. At the very least, increased demand should cause this one to creep toward $30.

7. Expect to See a Lot More of Chris Kvartek’s Golgari Adventures Build

Only one copy of Golgari Adventure made Top 8, but the deck looked like an utter blast to play all weekend long. Personally, I’m pretty excited to brew up the Lucky Clover build that Autumn Burchett brought to the Mythic Championship. Ally Warfield showed it off on camera, where she used the Lucky Clover / Smitten Swordmaster combo to impressively kill her opponent out of nowhere.

This wasn’t the build that made Top 8, though — that belonged to Chris Kvartek, who opted to build one of the most aggressive decks in a metagame almost entirely lacking in true aggression. While this strategy might not prove as impressive in the broader Standard metagame, it was definitely a great call at the Mythic Championship and is likely to spawn a series of imitators.

Unfortunately, this is not as cheap a deck as it appears at first glance. Questing Beast is still a $25 card, and Vivien, Arkbow Ranger is a full $18 thanks to the amount of play it was seeing in Pioneer right up until the Once Upon a Time banning last week. Even The Great Henge is $13. This deck is slightly more affordable than Jeskai Fires, but still — expensive decks have less room to grow, and their cheaper cards tend to remain cheaper since you’re bottle-necked by a bunch of $15+ rares.

That said, it’s possible that a pivot toward the Kvartek style of this deck will raise the fortunes of some of these cards while lowering others. Rotting Regisaur is just $5 right now, and as a Core Set 2020 card it has room to grow. Vivien, Arkbow Ranger might seem pricey at $18, but that’s actually low for a mythic planeswalker in a top-tier deck. If this build takes off, Vivien could end up back in the $20-$25 range pretty quickly. It also wouldn’t take much for The Great Henge to hit $20 again, especially since it’s backstopped by casual demand.

Rotting Regisaur Vivien, Arkbow Ranger

On the other hand, Rankle, Master of Pranks and Liliana, Dreadhorde General aren’t in this particular build of Golgari Adventures. Rankle did some work on camera this weekend, but it didn’t make Top 8, and Liliana didn’t really show up at all. Both of these cards might be due for a drop in price, especially since the Autumn Burchett list doesn’t run them either. Their days in this archetype might be numbered.

8. Even After All Those Bans, Simic Is Still Great

Oko? Gone. Once Upon a Time? Gone. Veil of Summer? Gone.

And still we had two different Simic decks in the Top 8.

We talked about Simic Flash being the deck of the Mythic Championship, but Andrea Mengucci’s Simic Ramp deck was also hugely impressive all weekend long. It’s yet another reason why I expect Hydroid Krasis to see a slight uptick in price, and it’s still more evidence that Nissa, Who Shakes the World is due for a financial breakout. These cards are incredibly powerful, and they’re going to find a home (or multiple homes!) no matter how the format evolves.

If you’re looking for other specs in this deck, Cavalier of Thorns and Finale of Devastation seem like the best bets to me. Cavalier of Thorns was as high as $15 back during Core Set 2020 Standard, and it hasn’t seen much play since then. The Cavaliers that see play in Jeskai Fires are in the $8-$10 range, but this one is just $4. Seems like easy potential for a double-up to me.

Cavalier of Thorns Finale of Devastation

By contrast, Finale of Devastation has remained expensive for a long time now due to the play it sees in Modern decks like Devoted Devastation and Abzan Company. The current buy-in is a whopping $15, but that’s backstopped by a lot of eternal demand. If Simic Ramp ends up taking off in Standard, this card should hit $25 pretty easily. Worst case, you’ve got a solid eternal card in your collection that should hit that mark at some point eventually. It’s not a slam-dunk spec considering the cost, but it’s a safe buy for anyone who wants to play the deck.

Despite Simic’s dominance yet again, Mythic Championship VII gives me a lot of hope for Standard’s future. A lot of folks will probably wait until Theros: Beyond Death to see if there’s another Oko situation before buying back in, but I’m hopeful that WotC won’t make that mistake again so soon. At the very least, I recommend taking a look at the current metagame if you’ve been avoiding Standard. It’s quite good…and there’s money to be made, too.

This Week’s Trends

It was yet another slow week for movers and shakers despite the fact that Once Upon a Time, Smuggler’s Copter, and Field of the Dead were all banned in Pioneer last Monday. All three of those cards have lost a couple of bucks since the banning, and all three still have more room to drop.

Once Upon a Time and Field of the Dead see play in Modern, so I don’t expect them to drop all the way down to bulk range, but neither card will maintain their current $12 price tag. $5-$6 seems more reasonable to me, and I’m selling at current retail. Star City Games dropped Smuggler’s Copter all the way down to $4, an aggressive price point for a card that was trading in the $10 range a few weeks ago, but even that seems too high. The card doesn’t really have a home in any format now, and it’ll probably end up back under $2 again soon.

Rhonas the Indomitable

On the other side of the Pioneer ledger, Rhonas the Indomitable started to skyrocket in price late last week as the Amonkhet God began to show up in various green-based decks in the new Pioneer metagame. I don’t know if Rhonas will end up making the cut once the best post-Once Upon a Time brews really come into their own, but definitely understand the desire to own a couple of copies just in case. Rhonas is currently out of stock at $12, and its price chart is still pointing straight up. $15-$20 seems likely by this weekend, with further gains possible if it turns out that Rhonas is actually going to be a significant player in the new Pioneer meta.

In all other respects, the Magic market seems to be settling into its yearly December swoon. Staples prices are down across all formats, and my personal sales are down to a trickle. Expect this trend to continue throughout the month, with prices set to rebound in early January. If you’ve been holding off on buying any expensive cards for a while, this seasonal lull is a great opportunity to snag a discount on pretty much anything you need.

Lastly, it was revealed on the day of the first Secret Lair drop that each Lair purchased would contain a stained glass (!) variant of a War of the Spark planeswalker. Based on the data that’s out there right now, it appears as though each Lair had its own small and specific pool of planeswalkers to pull from. Thanks to the amateur sleuths of Reddit, we were able to come up with a (possibly incomplete) list of which ‘walkers were possible to open in each Lair. I’ll list each card below, along with the current foil (non-stained glass) price for reference:

Bitterblossom Dreams

  • Gideon Blackblade – $15
  • Ajani, the Greathearted – $5
  • Sorin, Vengeful Bloodlord – $5
  • Huatli, the Sun’s Heart – $2

Eldraine Wonderland

  • Gideon Blackblade – $15
  • The Wanderer – $2.50
  • Teyo, the Shieldmage – $2

Restless in Peace

  • Ashiok, Dream Render – $13
  • Jace, Wielder of Mysteries – $10
  • Tamiyo, Collector of Tales – $5
  • Sorin, Vengeful Bloodlord – $5

Seeing Visions

  • Ashiok, Dream Render – $13


  • Ajani, the Greathearted – $5

<explosion sounds>

  • Gideon Blackblade – $15
  • Ral, Storm Conduit – $4
  • Domri, Anarch of Bolas – $4
  • Nahiri, Storm of Stone – $2
  • Angrath, Captain of Chaos – $2

Kaleidoscope Killers

  • Teferi, Time Raveler – $45
  • Nicol Bolas, Dragon-God – $25
  • Ajani, the Greathearted – $5
  • Tamiyo, Collector of Tales – $5
  • Ral, Storm Conduit – $4

Since not all the War of the Spark stained glass planeswalkers are included in the card pool, it’s a near-certainty that they’ll be bundled with something else in the future — the second round of Secret Lair drops, most likely. I also suspect that some of these planeswalkers will be available in the future as well, since they’re just Secret Lair bonuses and not limited to the “only for sale once, then gone forever” restriction.

I suspect that the stained glass variants will be worth more than the regular foils, but there won’t be much demand for the $5-and-lower planeswalkers regardless. I also don’t expect Gideon Blackblade to be all that hot a card, since it doesn’t see much play in Commander or any competitive format. Ashiok, Dream Render is a nice one, though, and I’d be surprised if it isn’t a solid $20+ card going forward. Teferi, Time Raveler and Nicol Bolas, Dragon-God are obviously the big pulls, and they made Kaleidoscope Killers an even better buy than it otherwise was. A lot of Commander players are going to want that Nicol Bolas, and I’ve already seen a few copies selling on eBay in the $80 range. Unless this drop sold a roughly infinite number of copies, I expect it’ll settle in around $60-$80.