By Zane Rowland
With release day less than a month away, Modern Masters 2017 comes out on March 17th, and will be bringing us 249 cards from 8th edition through Magic 2014. Previous Modern Masters sets have been strictly reprints, and we have no reason to suspect otherwise for MM2017.
The following list showcases 10 cards of previously uncommon rarity that I feel the Modern format desperately needs to see reprinted. I have compiled this list using several factors, including a card’s current price, its modern impact, and its playability range, AKA how many different decks it’s played in. So let’s get started!
- Lightning Bolt – $3.30- It’s a card that every MTG player knows, and one of the few iconic cards that have carried over from Legacy into the Modern format. It boasts 10 printings, and in fact, Lightning Bolt is presently the most played card in Modern. While its current price is pretty tame compared to the rest of this list, I have included it because if it doesn’t see a reprint in MM2017 or a subsequent Standard set, I think it will only serve to hurt new players who want to get into the format. No one should have to be paying $5+ for a copy of the most commonly played card in Modern. Please WOTC, keep this card accessible to everyone by keeping the price down.
- Manamorphose – $4.99 -Those of you who know me well enough know that if I’m playing red, I’m probably playing Manamorphose. It’s mana fixing, it’s a prowess trigger, it’s playing a 56-card deck, and it’s another card I can delve away. You don’t lose anything by playing Manamorphose because it replaces itself in both mana and by drawing a card. Originally a staple for storm players, this card sees a fair range of play and has been rising slowly since its reprint in the original Modern Masters.
- Simian Spirit Guide – $6.27-Ah Harambe, we barely knew thee. But we honor thy memory by using your ape spirit mana to cast turn one Chalice’s, turn two Blood Moons and turn three Nahiri’s. Originally printed in Planar Chaos, Simian Spirit guide is a nod to Alliances’s Elvish Spirit Guide. One of the few ways Modern players are able to produce two mana on the first turn, many have argued for putting this ape down for good and making it another casualty of the ban list. Personally, I love the card, and hope it continues to remain Modern legal. I think if WOTC reprints this in MM2017, chances are good this ape will be sticking around for a while.
- Spell Snare – $6.56 – Blue’s anti-Goyf. Spell Snare has been a popular choice with blue mages for years, and saw a reprint in the first Modern Masters. Due to Modern’s relatively low mana curve, this blue staple continues to rise steadily as it’s able to counter a plethora of threats in the format.
- Might of Old Krosa – $9.20- A $9 pump spell? Something is wrong with this picture. But what other card let’s you deal four damage to a player for the price of one mana? I’m here to tell you, not many. Another card on the list that has never seen a reprint, Might of Old Krosa is a staple for Infect players, but has also seen some crossover in Death’s Shadow and Monogreen Stompy. Enough is enough though, and this uncommon has been unaffordable for far too long. If I was a betting man, I’d put my money on Might of Old Krosa appearing in MM2017.
- Lightning Helix – $5 – A brilliant love child of the ever-esteemed Lightning Bolt, and the ever-forgettable Healing Salve, Lightning Helix is just a solid card all around. And shout-out to Raymond Swanland for its beautiful art in the Ajani vs. Nicol Bolas Duel Deck as well as original Modern Masters. Although I don’t mind seeing this card hover around $3, I get a little nervous when I see it creeping up too far beyond that. I want new players and older players alike to have access to this card, and I don’t want to see this great uncommon get too out of control.
- Inquisition of Kozilek – $7.99 – My discard spell of choice. Inquisition is beautifully balanced and a modern staple. Its reprinting in Conspiracy: Take the Crown helped keep it affordable for a while, but the demand for this card continues to rise and even surpass other similar staples, like Serum Visions. That should tell us something about the format. Although I don’t think a reprint is very likely given its most recent reprinting, it would be nice to see.
- Kitchen Finks – $12.23 – This little Ouphe has been a Modern staple for a long time, but probably earned its claim to fame from its synergy in Birthing Pod decks. It’s cheap, efficient, has multiple lives, and gains you life. For such a commonly played creature in modern, Kitchen Finks’s price is way too high. If WOTC doesn’t reprint this in MM2017 it will soon be hitting $15, which will make red mages everywhere rejoice, but leave the rest of us with a bad taste in our mouths.
- Mishra’s Bauble – $21.32 -Wait what, how much? Come again? 21 DOLLARS?! That’s right, Mishra’s Bauble has topped the $20 mark, and it looks like it may stay there. At first glance, Mishra’s Bauble seems like the very definition of mediocrity. It essentially gives you perfect information about your opponent’s or your own next draw, and replaces itself by drawing a card at the beginning of the next turn’s upkeep, a magic mechanic very reminiscent of old school Dominaria. For the longest time, this card hovered around $7 and was extremely niche, yet with the advent of prowess and delirium, this little trinket is seeing a lot more action. Prowess decks, Rock decks, Death’s Shadow decks, and even Jund decks as well as others are main decking Mishra’s Bauble and doing well. If WOTC doesn’t reprint this now, its price will skyrocket to the moon.
- Path to Exile – $11.40 – The 2nd most played card in the Modern format as well as its best removal spell. Although it’s been printed over and over again, Path to Exile’s price tag never seems to stay very low for long. Hopefully, WOTC sees that this card is an auto-include for MM2017 and keeps it affordable to the new players for at least a little while.
Well, folks, those are my top 10 Uncommon picks for what I believe are most needed in Modern at the present time. Do you agree with my list? Anything I may have overlooked? Let me know in the comments below!
© 2017, Patrick Cossel. All rights reserved.