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MTG card that breaks infinite combo sees 300% price spike

The Magic: The Gathering card Cursed Totem has spiked in price, as it provides an excellent answer to a dominant new deck archetype.

MTG card art for Cursed Idol

The MTG card Cursed Totem is spiking thanks to a shake up in the Modern meta that’s seen an old combo deck rising to the top. The card has only risen from 50 cents to $2, so it’s still cheap, but foil copies have rocketed sky high, from $5 to $36, an increase of 620%. It’s become more desirable because of its ability to shut down activated abilities on creatures.

To be more specific, Cursed Totem is being utilized by all the decks that don’t have lots of activated abilities. It’s a sideboard tool to combat one specific MTG Modern deck, Yawgmoth Combo. The deck relies on the infamous Yawgmoth, Thran Physician. This creature can sacrifice another to put a -1/-1 counter on something and draw you a card.

MTG card Cursed Idol

Normally, you’d use that counter to kill or weaken something of your opponents, but with this MTG deck you put it on your own critter. You use two cheap Undying creatures Strangleroot Geist and Young Wolf, and sacrifice one while removing a +1/+1 counter from the other (+1/+1 and -1/-1 counters cancel each other out.) Then you can sacrifice the other and take the +1/+1 counter off the first (who’ll have come back thanks to undying).

With this combo going you can draw a ton of cards, paying a mere one life for each. You can use something like Sheoldred to top you up and keep drawing ad infinitum, or Blood Artist to drain your opponent to death.

After powerful cards like Fury and Up the Beanstalk got banned in the recent MTG banlist changes, Yawgmoth has become a top tier meta deck once more. So people need ways of combating it, and Cursed Totem is the perfect answer. Not only does it stop Yawgmoth in his unpleasant tracks, it also handles all the mana dorks hanging about in the deck.

For more Magic: The Gathering price stories, check out this list of the most expensive MTG cards. And don’t miss our guide to all the different MTG formats.