Jordan Pollack: Amonkhet Quick Hits

I heard that short sentences keep readers engaged. I think I read that somewhere in a creative writing how-to book or something. So here are some quick hits on Amonkhet and the new Standard. Buy these. Sell these. Don’t listen to me, fine. Just move your cards and support your LGS. Help the Magic market, people!


Arlinn Kord 

This card is still in Standard! Its rate is very good for a Standard planeswalker, and Arlinn Kord works very well with the exert mechanic.

I’m waiting for someone to break this card with Glorybringer and Combat Celebrant. (P.S.: Remember Verdurous Gearhulk hype? It’s still in Standard, too.)

Foil Manglehorn

Is 3 mana too much for Vintage? Probably. But I like its abilities and some Vintage games are won by Snapcaster Mage attacking 10 times, so a 2/2 isn’t the worst.


I like this card a lot. I like Stormbreath Dragon a lot more, but that was a mythic. This is a rare. I’m bullish at its $3 price tag, as it’s going to be a four-of in many standard decks.


Walking Ballista 

This card is starting to see play in Modern and Legacy. If you didn’t buy in at $4 like I said, then you probably have to buy in now at $12. Seems fine though, as it’s still a cheap, colorless, rare, efficient dude. Also the foil prices and the foreign prices are through the roof.

Cycling Lands

I am bullish on these in trade. Neutral if buying in cash; $3-4 isn’t the worst for Standard dual lands that will be in rotation for plenty of time. Will any of them see play in Modern? Maybe, but not as a four-of.

Elder Deep Fiend/Distended Mindbender

Yeah these scary cards are still in Standard. There has to be some sort of sultai control or sultai emerge deck lurking. What will it look like? More spells and midrange value creatures? Cryptolith Rite powering the big guys out early? Nissa, Steward of Elements with lots of creatures?

Nissa, Steward of Elements

I’m bearish on this card. I like that it scales, but I can’t justify its $25 price tag. It will go down as more and more packs are opened. Trade this to a little kid for his shock lands he doesn’t use.

Soul-Scar Mage

I am bullish on foils, but it’s not better than Monastery Swiftspear. Not at all. Red one-drops need haste. This card should have haste. It doesn’t have haste. Moving on.

Liliana, Death’s Majesty

I love this card. It does everything I wanted that Ob Nixilis Reignited didn’t. It protects itself or it comes down and reanimates instantly. It can wipe the board in two turns. We were all okay paying five mana for reanimation abilities, but this is better. This is a five-mana reanimate that stays alive and continues generating advantage. This card makes me want to throw every removal spell in standard into a deck with three of these and just grind people out.

Pull from Tomorrow

If U/G Crush of Tentacles is a deck for more than a week (see the Pro Tour where the deck didn’t do anything), then this card could be good. It reminds me of Sphinx’s Revelation without the life gain. That card people wanted four of in a deck. Pull from Tomorrow, maybe only one or two copies. Still bullish at $2. Can’t go wrong.

Gideon of the Trials

$50 price tag. Pass. I’m bearish. Too expensive and people are still ordering these. Great abilities, I get it. Three abilities you can use the turn it comes in? Yeah I guess. Ultimate? Nope.

Enigma Drake

Bullish on foils. I don’t know why. Maybe I am a U/R control deck fanatic at heart. I like the four toughness for Modern and Legacy, where instants and sorceries are super cheap.

Plague Belcher

Bullish on these! I like aggro zombies. Maybe there is a R/B zombies build that could win. This card hits hard as a three-mana 5/4. Its downside isn’t that bad because zombies like dying. Or is that vampires? I always forget.

Jordan Pollack is a Tax Accountant and Magic player from suburban Chicago. He holds an accounting degree from the University of Kansas and is currently pursuing CPA certification. He enjoys watching the Blackhawks and doing manly things such as fixing a leaky sink, grilling, and making sure his girlfriend has everything she needs (and wants).

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Jordan Pollack