Wizards’ Wild Reprint Policy Has One Major Benefit – Bringing Down Prices of Staple Cards

Which top MTG cards have seen drastic drops in prices thanks to multiple reprints by Wizards of the Coast?

Wizards’ Wild Reprint Policy Has One Major Benefit – Bringing Down Prices of Staple Cards

Magic: the Gathering (MTG) has changed so much in the past few years that it has been tough keeping track of it all. One big change is Wizards of the Coast’s increased tendency to do reprints of chase cards. They launched their very own direct-to-players Secret Lair series (which reprints classic cards with new art), and also release more product that are solely for reprints. The upcoming Commander Masters is a perfect example – the set only consists of reprints and zero new cards.

While all these reprints has the unintended side effect of overwhelming players, it does have one major upside – increasing supply of cards for trade between players. A higher supply logically means a drop in market price, and that’s exactly what has been happening for all the sought-after cards in MTG’s history.

Here we’ll look at 7 top cards that have seen reprints in recent times, and how this new policy has affected their market prices. Huge thanks to the venerable MTGGoldfish, who provided historical prices and comparison here.

Allosaurus Shepherd – Down 75%

Price for Allosaurus Shepherd is down significantly because of one major reprint in MTG's Double Masters 2.

This mega elf-ball was so strong and rare that it cost $100 per card, and ironically could only be found in a set built for MTG beginners (the original Jumpstart). Incredibly the price somehow went up to $200 for a brief period in March 2021. Unlike many other cards that you’ll see below, Wizards did not wait long to add Allosaurus Shepherd into their top priorities of cards to be reprinted.

So far, Allosaurus Shepherd‘s sole reprint comes in the rather expensive Double Masters 2. The huge demand for 2X2 – driven by the inclusion of Textured Foils – meant a considerable amount of Shepherds entered the secondary market. Today, the elf can be had for a reasonable $25, a welcomed decrease for most MTG players. The next reprint may not come soon, but one can always hope.

Wasteland – Down 71%

Wasteland's price has dropped after multiple mtg reprints, a good outcome for the playing community.

Another old, classic card that was and still is so necessary in many formats. However, being excluded from the Reserved List meant a reprint was bound to happen sooner of later.

It appeared in 2016’s Eternal Masters, almost 20 years since its first printing. It also appeared as rarer special reprints, 2 as an Expedition card, and another in the newest Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-Earth as a box-topper. While these special variants mean there aren’t that many copies in the market, it’s enough to see Wasteland‘s price tumble down to the low $20s.

Considering the original Wasteland’s price used to hover between $80-100 before 2016, seeing this massive drop to $20+ can only mean well for the game’s accessibility. However, much like Ensnaring Bridge, if you’d been holding to such old cards in the hopes that it would retain its value, sadly that opportunity is now wasted.

Ensnaring Bridge – Down 60%

Ensnaring Bridge's price has dropped after multiple mtg reprints, a good outcome for the playing community.

A great stax piece in both Commander and other formats, Ensnaring Bridge has been a mainstay since its early days in the late 90s. It was strangely not included in the Reserved List, but at the same time wasn’t reprinted for around 15 years. Its scarcity ensured the bridge would command a pretty high price, going as high as $60 just before 2020.

Unfortunately, that’s where reprints started coming hard and fast. Starting with 2018’s Masters 25, further reprints with Double Masters in 2020 and this year’s Lord of the Rings Universes Beyond set has brough the price down to just below $20.

It’s a fairer price for a relatively powerful card, and for those who require playsets in either Modern Tron or Legacy Painter, this drop in price will be welcomed. Collectors, on the other hand, might feel some regret not selling earlier.

Birds of Paradise – Down 60%

Birds of Paradise's price has dropped after multiple mtg reprints, a good outcome for the playing community.

To be fair, Birds of Paradise has not commandeered an exorbitant price tag since the mid 90s, when Wizards stopped reprinting it for a few years. The BOP’s ability to tap for any colour Mana, and only costing 1 green, makes it such a versatile Creature, especially in multi-coloured Commander decks.

Then the bird got reprinted in core set after core set – 7th Ed, 8th Ed, 10th Ed, M11 and M12. After another lengthy hiatus, modern-time reprints in Secret Lair, Mystery Boosters, and the most recent Dominaria Remastered, mean owning a Birds of Paradise has never been more accessible. A regular print can be found for as low as $6, which means good news for the many Commander players out there.

Considering BOPs used to cost up to the $15-20 range, finding one now for just 35% of that price is amazing progress, and genuinely like paradise. We wouldn’t mind seeing it drop even more, but since BOP has had the highest number of reprints among cards in this list, don’t expect the next reprint to come too soon.

Teferi’s Protection – Down 50%

Teferi's Protection's price has dropped after multiple mtg reprints, a good outcome for the playing community.

Used primarily as white’s “get out of jail” card, Teferi’s Protection is a common sight in many Commander decks that include white. It only costs 3 Mana, and effectively grants you a stay of execution for 1 turn. It was in such high demand that a single copy would cost $50. With a price like that just to fill 1 card out of 100 in a Commander deck, something had to change.

Thankfully, Wizards has included Teferi’s Protection in a whole bunch of reprints since 2020. There was the Mystical Archive variants from Strixhaven. And there was also unsurprising Secret Lair reprint.

But what really has brought the price down to the $25 range is the massive reprint in Double Masters 2, with 3 foil variants in the set. This inevitably led to a drop in the card’s price, even if it’s not as drastic as others on this list. It only shows how important Teferi’s Protection is as a Commander staple. Hopefully, that would also mean more reprints sooner to further drive the price down.

Scroll Rack – Down 75%

Scroll Rack's price has dropped after multiple mtg reprints, a good outcome for the playing community.

Scroll Rack again falls under the same category of “old, powerful, utility Artifact that isn’t on the Reserved List.” It’s a pretty clear trend and a category that Wizards clearly identified as they looked for worthy cards to reprint.

Scroll Rack hasn’t had that many reprints (2 in fact), but because it was in the heavily printed Commander Legends, this deck-sifting Artifact soon became a rather common commodity.

Scroll Rack's price has dropped tremendously despite only 1 major reprint in Commander Legends.

If we look at the original 1997 print from the set Tempest, it was commanding an easy $90 just a few years ago. That’s what 20 years of zero paper reprints can do a Rare card. It was upshifted to a Mythic Rare in Commander Legends, but that didn’t stop the price from going down. Today, an original Scroll Rack can be bought for just above $20, with the reprints slightly lower.

Sensei’s Divining Top – Down 69%

Sensei's Divining Top's price has dropped after multiple mtg reprints, a good outcome for the playing community.

A key card for Commander decks, Sensei’s Divining Top is cheap to cast, can do so much, and even combos off with other cards like Bolas’ Citadel. It had not been reprinted for almost 10 years until 2018’s Eternal Masters, which suppressed its price to a mouth-watering $15.

The price of the original top steadily went up to a high of $80 in early 2021, out of reach to many casual players. Thankfully, with another major reprint in last year’s Double Masters 2, Sensei’s Divining Top has dropped again to $22.

If history were to repeat itself, then expect the Top to gradually appreciate again. Our hope is that Wizards will continue reprinting it over time, be it in Secret Lairs or other Modern/Commander sets. Right now, it’s a fitting, topsy-turvy, 69% drop for this iconic Artifact.

End Step & Notable Exception

As much as we want all MTG cards to drop in price with every reprint, some cards just defy logic and either maintain a strong price, or in certain cases even appreciate. One such card is Mana Crypt – it was also reprinted in Double Masters, at a time when it was already fetching a high $100 per piece.

Because of its ubiquitous use and sustained demand in Commander, Mana Crypt has jumped a huge 80% to $180 today. It’s an astronomical sum for a card that isn’t on the Reserved List and isn’t even legal in most formats. We hope another reprint is coming soon to alleviate some of the price pressure, and follow the trend of the other cards mentioned here.

After playing from Tempest to Urza's Saga block, Ted took a 20 year break from the game before returning to the classic Plane of Dominaria in 2018. His favourite formats are Commander, Draft, and, grudgingly, Standard.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back To Top