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By: one million words, Pete Jahn
Jan 16 2015 1:00pm
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State of the Program for January 16th 2015

 In the News:

Fate Reforged Prerelease and Release Info Up: Wizards has posted info on the Fate Reforged Release and Prerelease events. The initial posting said release event drafts would be $10, but that was quickly changed to $15. The posting appears to have some additional typos: for instance the payout of a four round, 16 player friendly prerelease event is listed as 3 match wins = 5 FRF packs, 2 match wins = 3 FRF boosters, 2 or 1 match win = 2 FRF boosters. All prerelease drafts will be FRF / KTK / KTK. Sealed events will include a clan-specific booster (with a foil rare or Mythic), 4 FRF boosters and a KTK booster. Triple FRF drafts will be available during the release events.  Details here.       
 
February Promos Announced: Wizards has announced the promos for next season. The MOCS promo is Goblin Rabblemaster. Nice – an alt art version of a heavily played Standard card that is in the double digit price range (for now at least, but MOCS promos don’t appear in large enough volumes to seriously affect prices.) The Event promo is the FNM art Frenzied Goblin and the Store promo is an alt art Disdainful Stroke. Nice to see my Khans preview card getting some love.  
 
Twitter Discussion on QPs, etc.: Wizards tweeted a reminder that QPs from seasons 5-12 were being erased during last Wednesday’s downtime. ‏@wrongwaygoback replied “can you please suggest to the team that worthless mirrodin warmarks and other pre-Re nonsense be removed as well?” Wizards responded that they would not do a blanket removal, since they had never warned players they could be removed, but that Wizards would be happy to remove them on an individual basis.   To remove warmarks (or other objects) from your account, contact http://wizards.custhelp.com/.  And be nice: the people who will help you get rid of these things were not the people who cluttered up your account with them in the first place.
 
Wizards is Hiring Digital Events Coordinators: If you want to be one of the DECs that can save large events when the program tries to kill them, apply here. You can find this, and other jobs, on the Wizards of the Coast careers page.
 

The Timeline:

This is a list of things we have been promised, or just want to see coming back.   Another good source for dates and times is the MTGO calendar. Here’s what we know, want or are tracking. This list is getting short, mainly because Wizards is so bad at passing on any information about future products or events. They generally have announced these events a day or two before they happens, which means most players never hear about them, and news compilations (like State of the Program) only hear about them too late for them to be included.
 
Item: date it will return and notes
·         Fate Reforged: February 2nd release, prereleases probably start prior Thursday or Friday before that.
·         Legacy Cube: Jan. 14th to Jan. 24th   Legacy Cube is the non-powered Cube.
·         Triple Odyssey Draft Queues: Jan. 14th to Jan. 24th  
·         Leagues (June 2015?) Wizards said leagues will return in 2015.
·         Modern Masters II: May, 29, 2015. Mirrodin through Zendikar. Details here.
 

The Bug Blog Update

The Bug Blog is a weekly post by Wizards covering the most common known issues in MTGO. The blog is published late Thursday or early Friday, and I write this Wednesday, so I will be a week behind.  The most recent one up, as I write this, is from January 8th.    Ponder made the list this week. It has been a “known” bug for six months, but came to prominence when hundreds of people on LSV’s stream watched it bite him. Other new additions: Fade Away from is bugged – it is either Wrath or game crash. More relevant to current game play: if you unmorph during an opponents end step, your lands may appear to remain tapped. It’s just visual – they will “tap” for mana if you click them.   And a final reminder – the invisible disconnect, where it shows your opponent’s clock running when you actually have priority is a thing, again. It was the worst bug in v3, and it’s back. Restart the program to repair, but take a screen shot first. It sometimes takes forever (figuratively) to log back in, so timing out is a real thing. And, if you do time out, file for reimbursement.
 

Opinion Section: How to Handle Collections 

A couple things happened recently that have got me thinking about my MTGO collection and accounts.  Here’s the bullet point list; I’ll explain below:
·         The Twitter discussion on warmarks (see above). 
·         The hour I spent changing cards after importing decklists.
·         Finding I apparently didn’t own a playset of Satyr Wayfinders.
·         The hour I spent moving draft leftovers out of my main account.
·         And, for everything, the endless wasted seconds waiting while my collection updated.
 
Even player rewards promos have caused problems. I strongly support playing matching playsets: if I am playing four Bile Blights, I want them to match.   I do not want my opponent to gain any advantage from seeing one picture when Thoughtseizing and another two turns later when I cast one. And I had made sure that I had one playset of matching copies, but then I apparently earned a promo, and I sold off all my spares – but apparently the stack of four at the bottom of my collection was one promo and three regulars.   With regular Bile Blights over a buck, I’m not willing to buy a new one. 
 
The Satyr Wayfinder was a different issue. I have owned lots of Wayfinders: I drafted them in both Theros and M15. I kept shifting them into my storage accounts, which I let the buybots loose on. However, on my machine, with my 40,000+ card collection and slow Internet connection, there is a noticeable lag between a click and the card moving. I frequently get the “Updating Collection” popup after moving even a single card, and pretty much every time I use the “add all but four to active binder.” It’s a pain. It also leads to misclicks, where I accidentally add 2 of my five copies to the binder. I have occasionally done this with money cards, most recently adding one of my playset of Onslaught Polluted Deltas to the trade binder when I just wanted to add the KTK Polluted Delta I had just drafted. Fortunately, I caught that one, but the combination of lag and the client adding draft leftovers directly into your collection can lead to disaster. I hate that.
 
All of this has led me to considering buying yet another account and adding just the cards I need for constructed to that account. I started wondering if that was feasible, and whether it would be more or less effort than moving the draft leftovers out of my account, especially the random basic lands the client insists on putting on top of my Mirage Mountains and Unhinged Forests. A quick, back-of-the-envelope calculation seems in order.
 
A quick explanation for you youngsters: back in my youth, messages came written on paper enclosed in a paper covering called an envelope. When you wanted to do some quick calculations, you could use one of those leftover envelopes as scratch paper and actually do the math, manually with a pen, on the envelope. So “back-of-the-envelope calculation” means a quick approximation good enough for an initial appraisal. Nowadays, any math is probably done in Excel or on a smart phone, but the phrase endures. It’s like “dialing” a phone.
 
Another consideration: playing constructed from one account and limited from another would mean splitting my QPs, but since I almost never get to double digits in a season, that’s not really my concern. I just don’t have enough time to play. 
 
Anyway, back to the calculation: last weekend, I binged on MTGO. I was trying to burn through my backlog of Theros packs.   I have a dozen draft sets left, so I was entering whatever opened first. I played a half-dozen drafts – interestingly breaking almost even after winning an 8-4 and going 2-1 in all the Swiss drafts.   I also did five Modern Masters drafts this week. So, in an atypically busy week, I added 11 drafts * 3 boosters * 15 cards/booster = 495 cards to my collection. A more typical week probably averages 200 cards, and some of those would be decent cards I would keep. Call it 10,000 cards per year I move out and try to trade away. If I kept the cards I was using for constructed in a separate account, I could just make everything in the draft account tradable and save all the work of moving stuff. That would mean I would save work, provided I didn’t have to move 10k cards to the constructed account. 
 
So how many cards would I have to move? First, I would have too clear out any trash the new account came with.   I haven’t bought an account for a long time, but I think it starts with some basic lands and some cards, plus the new player draft stuff. (Bonus, I could do those drafts, and maybe earn a spare pack or so.)  As a rough guess, I would probably be clearing out 200 cards or so – more if new accounts start with some sort of toolkit cardset.
 
I would be playing Standard, Modern, Legacy, Vintage and maybe some Pauper from that account. Let’s see how many cards that would require.  
 
To start, I would need lands. I would want the special basics I have collected – the Unhinged Forests, Mirage Mountains, Saga Lightning Strike Islands, etc. I would probably need 24 of each - call it 120 cards, plus another 20 each snow-covered lands, because I have them.   Everything else will depend on the decks I want to play. Let’s start looking at that.
 
To approximate the mix of cards, and because I was curious, I decided to sum up all the cards in the decks I featured in the last month, plus any major archetypes from previous weeks. I ended up with a half dozen Standard, Modern and Legacy decks, plus four Vintage decks.   I pasted the decklists into Excel, removed the numbers, then sorted the cards and removed duplicates. Fortunately, Excel makes that pretty painless. Want to guess how many cards the list included?    Magic has over 15,000 individual cards, but the vast, vast majority are not played in any format. After sorting, I found that I could play all those decks, in all those formats, with playsets of just 335 different cards, including all the random oddities in sideboards, like Grindclock and Wipe Away. Those were one-ofs, and the list also includes Vintage Restricted cards, so I am looking at trading somewhere around 1,300 cards once, instead of 200 weekly.  And it will minimize the mistakes.
 
For your enjoyment, here are the cards by format. See if you can guess what decks are included.
 

Standard
Modern
Legacy
Vintage
Abzan Charm, AEtherspouts, Ajani, Mentor of Heroes, Ajani's Presence, Anafenza, the Foremost, Anger of the Gods, Aqueous Form, Arc Lightning, Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver, Back to Nature, Battlefield Forge, Battlewise Hoplite, Bile Blight, Bloodstained Mire, Butcher of the Horde, Caves of Koilos, Chained to the Rocks, Chandra, Pyromaster, Commune with the Gods, Courser of Kruphix, Crackling Doom, Defiant Strike, Dig Through Time, Disdainful Stroke, Dismal Backwater, Dissolve, Doomwake Giant, Drown in Sorrow, Duneblast, Eidolon of Blossoms, Elspeth, Sun's Champion, End Hostilities, Erase, Evolving Wilds, Favored Hoplite, Feat of Resistance, Flooded Strand, Garruk, Apex Predator, Glare of Heresy, Goblin Rabblemaster, Gods Willing, Grindclock, Heliod's Pilgrim, Hero Of Iroas, Hero's Downfall, Hordeling Outburst, Hornet Queen, Hushwing Gryff, Interpret the Signs, Jace's Ingenuity, Jeskai Ascendancy, Jeskai Charm, Jorubai Murk Lurker, Lightning Strike, Liliana Vess, Llanowar Wastes, Mana Confluence, Mardu Charm, Mortal Obstinacy, Murderous Cut, Mystic Monastery, Negate, Nomad Outpost, Opulent Palace, Ordeal of Heliod, Ordeal of Thassa, Pearl Lake Ancient, Perilous Vault, Pharika, God of Affliction, Pharika's Cure, Polluted Delta, Prognostic Sphinx, Radiant Fountain, Raise the Alarm, Read the Bones, Reclamation Sage, Sandsteppe Citadel, Satyr Wayfinder, Seeker of the Way, Shivan Reef, Siege Rhino, Silence the Believers, Sorin, Solemn Visitor, Spectra Ward, Stoke the Flames, Stubborn Denial, Sylvan Caryatid, Temple of Deceit, Temple of Enlightenment, Temple of Epiphany, Temple of Malady, Temple of Silence, Temple of Triumph, Thoughtseize, Tranquil Cove, Treasure Cruise, Triton Tactics, Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth, Utter End, Whip of Erebos, Windswept Heath, Wingmate Roc
Abrupt Decay, Aether Vial, Amulet of Vigor, Ancient Grudge, Arid Mesa, Aven Mindcensor, Azusa, Lost but Seeking, Blackcleave Cliffs, Blood Crypt, Bojuka Bog, Borborygmos Enraged, Boros Garrison, Cavern of Souls, Celestial Colonnade, Chalice of the Void, City of Brass, Copperline Gorge, Coralhelm Commander, Counterflux, Dig Through Time, Dismember, Electrolyze, Engineered Explosives, Engineered Explosives, Faithless Looting, Flooded Strand, Geist of Saint Traft, Gemstone Mine, Ghost Quarter, Ghost Quarter, Glimmerpost, Godless Shrine, Golgari Rot Farm, Goryo's Vengeance, Griselbrand, Grisly Salvage, Gruul Turf, Gut Shot, Hallowed Fountain, Hibernation, Hive Mind, Jarad's Orders, Kira, Great Glass-Spinner, Kor Firewalker, Lightning Axe, Lightning Bolt, Lightning Helix, Lord of Atlantis, Magma Spray, Mana Confluence, Marsh Flats, Master of the Pearl Trident, Master of Waves, Merrow Reejerey, Minamo, School at Water's Edge, Mutavault, Necrotic Ooze, Negate, Oboro, Palace in the Clouds, Overgrown Tomb, Pack Rat, Pact of Negation, Path to Exile, Phantasmal Image, Primeval Titan, Pyroclasm, Reclamation Sage, Relic of Progenitus, Remand, Restoration Angel, Sacred Foundry, Scalding Tarn, Seal of Primordium, Selesnya Sanctuary, Serum Visions, Sigarda, Host of Herons, Silvergill Adept, Simian Spirit Guide, Simian Spirit Guide, Simic Growth Chamber, Slaughter Pact, Slayers' Stronghold, Snapcaster Mage, Soul Spike, Spreading Seas, Steam Vents, Stomping Ground, Sulfur Falls, Summer Bloom, Summoner's Pact, Sunhome, Fortress of the Legion, Swan Song, Temple Garden, Tendo Ice Bridge, Thassa, God of the Sea, Thoughtseize, Thragtusk, Thundermaw Hellkite, Tidebinder Mage, Tolaria West, Tormod's Crypt, Unburial Rites, Unified Will, Vendilion Clique, Verdant Catacombs, Vesuva, Wanderwine Hub, Wear // Tear, Zombie Infestation
Abrupt Decay, Ad Nauseam, Ancestral Vision, Ancient Grudge, Ancient Tomb, Arid Mesa, Bayou, Bloodstained Mire, Bojuka Bog, Boseiju, Who Shelters All, Brainstorm, Burrenton Forge-Tender, Cabal Ritual, Cabal Therapy, Carpet of Flowers, Cataclysm, Cavern of Souls, Chain of Vapor, Chill, Choke, City of Traitors, Containment Priest, Courser of Kruphix, Creeping Tar Pit, Dark Ritual, Daze, Deathrite Shaman, Defense Grid, Delver of Secrets, Dig Through Time, Disfigure, Dismember, Dryad Arbor, Duress, Electrickery, Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite, Empty the Warrens, Emrakul, the Aeons Torn, Ethersworn Canonist, Faerie Conclave, Faithless Looting, Fatestitcher, Flooded Strand, Flusterstorm, Force of Will, Forked Bolt, Gaddock Teeg, Gemstone Mine, Gitaxian Probe, Grafdigger's Cage, Green Sun's Zenith, Grim Tutor, Griselbrand, Horizon Canopy, Hydroblast, Infernal Tutor, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Jeskai Ascendancy, Karakas, Kird Ape, Knight of the Reliquary, Krosan Grip, Lightning Bolt, Liliana of the Veil, Lion's Eye Diamond, Lotus Petal, Maelstrom Pulse, Marsh Flats, Massacre, Meddling Mage, Mental Note, Misty Rainforest, Monastery Swiftspear, Mother of Runes, Night of Souls' Betrayal, Nihil Spellbomb, Omniscience, Overmaster, Past in Flames, Pithing Needle, Polluted Delta, Ponder, Preordain, Pyroblast, Pyroclasm, Qasali Pridemage, Red Elemental Blast, Rough, Savannah, Scalding Tarn, Scavenging Ooze, Scrubland, Shardless Agent, Show and Tell, Smash to Smithereens, Sneak Attack, Spell Pierce, Spirit of the Labyrinth, Stoneforge Mystic, Sulfur Elemental, Sulfuric Vortex, Surgical Extraction, Sword of Fire and Ice, Sword of Light and Shadow, Swords to Plowshares, Sylvan Library, Taiga, Tarmogoyf, Tendrils of Agony, Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, Thought Scour, Through the Breach, Tormod's Crypt, Toxic Deluge, Treasure Cruise, Tropical Island, Tundra, Umezawa's Jitte, Underground Sea, Vendilion Clique, Verdant Catacombs, Volcanic Island, Wasteland, Wear, Windswept Heath, Wipe Away, Xantid Swarm, Young Pyromancer, Zealous Persecution
Ancestral Recall, Ancient Grudge, Black Lotus, Brain Freeze, Brainstorm, Dack Fayden, Dack Fayden, Dark Ritual, Delver of Secrets, Demonic Tutor, Duress, Electrickery, Empty the Warrens, Fastbond, Fire // Ice, Flooded Strand, Flusterstorm, Force of Will, Gitaxian Probe, Grafdigger's Cage, Gush, Ingot Chewer, Lightning Bolt, Lotus Petal, Manamorphose, Mental Misstep, Mind's Desire, Misty Rainforest, Mox Emerald, Mox Jet, Mox Ruby, Mox Sapphire, Null Rod, Past in Flames, Ponder, Preordain, Pyroblast, Ravenous Trap, Scalding Tarn, Spell Pierce, Strip Mine, Time Walk, Tormod's Crypt, Treasure Cruise, Tropical Island, Trygon Predator, Underground Sea, Vampiric Tutor, Volcanic Island, Volcanic Island, Wheel of Fortune, Yawgmoth's Will, Yixlid Jailer, Young Pyromancer

 
That list is hardly complete – for example, I don’t see Birthing Pod in the Modern list, or Sidsi in Standard. On the other hand, I cannot see myself playing UW Aggro, so the extras probably balance out the misses. Doesn’t matter – the point is that it probably would be worthwhile to create a separate account for constructed, and move just the cards I would want for constructed into it. I can always move more cards when I need them, but I certainly don’t need probably 38,000 of the 40,000 cards now in my account. In the old client, being able to look over my collection of 4 of everything (common at least) was nice, and helped with brewing. Since the new client doesn’t really allow that, I don’t see the value anymore. 
      
I’m actually getting excited about this. It solves so many problems that it is probably worth the cost and the hassle. Now I just have to find a name. I could try 1MWords, like my twitter handle. Or “Three Million Words,” because my total paid-for output must be pretty close to that by now. 
 
The fact that Wizards has ignored the collectible of Magic cards in the new client is sad.   I hate having a client so bad at collection management that I will probably need three or four different accounts just to play Magic online. Sure, some of this is first world problems – few players have multiple accounts with 40k+ cards in each. However, I have been drafting for a decade now, and have never found anyone who wants to buy spare Pacifisms, Cancels, or, for that matter, Islands. So I have over 250 Pacifisms and 200+ Cancels. And over 2,700 basic Islands.   
 
And all I need for constructed is maybe 24 Islands and at most 4 Cancels.  
 
Wizards, I know customer service can remove the Warmarks from my account, and I will probably ask them to remove stuff like the M15 battle packs and so forth. Can they also remove spare commons? People have been asking for a shredder for years, but it had never been an option, since someone accidentally “shredding” cards they wanted to keep would be a huge hassle. However, my storage account is now so large I cannot make if all tradable at once. (I wrote about that here, here and here.)  This has become a real problem, and while I may be an extreme example, I cannot be the only one. Dealers must also be having problems. Dealers buy collections, and those collections have things like 9E white-bordered Fishliver Oil and Firebreathing, and those cards have no value. They don’t sell, but they have to sit somewhere. I suspect dealers have lots of old accounts stuffed full of junk like that.   They don’t need my copies – no one does – but I don’t want them either. (Quick check, I have dozens of both of these.)
 
An actual shredder – something that lets a player destroy cards – is not really an option. Players would end up accidentally destroying good cards, in the same way I almost sold off my Polluted Delta. I could also see the potential for problems where someone has a fight with a significant other or friend and that person shreds cards in revenge. Or whatever. To make a shredder work, Wizards would have to make it reversible. For example, players might have up to four downtimes to undo shredding before the cards are permanently gone. That seems reasonable, but I don’t have to program it.   Maybe the overhead of tracking cards that way is too great.    
 
Here’s an alternative – let us donate spare cards to new players.   Wizards could create a specific bot. When we had junk to get rid of, we could trade it to that bot 400 cards at a time. Everything traded to that bot would be pooled, and any new player could get a packet with, say, 2000 random cards from the bot, together with a note saying “these cards have been donated by other players, to get you started.” Wizards could write an algorithm that would ensure that the new player got no more than 4 of any card, and that the good stuff got passed out first. The Wizards repository could hold onto the junk like Fishliver Oil.    
 
What I would love to see is a special Wizards “redemption” thingee that would let me trade 500 cards for a phantom point or two. I would be all over that, but that might be too good.   I could see that causing a lot of the same issues as a shredder, in addition to dumping too many phantom points into the client. And this option would not solve the “I traded away the good stuff accidentally” problem.
 
The real trick is to find a way to get rid of the huge overstocks of extremely low value cards, but doing it in a way that cannot be abused by players and that does not distort the market. Ideally, the bot would know what cards have intrinsic value and only buy the rest. Making that happen, thought, would require some serious AI programming and is almost certainly not worth the effort. It would make far more sense to harness the knowledge of the dealers. Here’s a suggestion to do that: allow dealers (and players) to “redeem” cards for TIX – but at the rate of 100 cards per Ticket. The kicker is that it has to be 100 copies of the exact same card. The dealer, or player with a bazillion more cards than I have, could set 100 copies of 9E Fishliver Oil for “redemption,” and on the next downtime those 100 Fishliver Oils would become one more TIX in that account. And no one is going to accidentally redeem 100 MED4 Tropical Islands.     
 
The economist in me sees real potential in that sort of solution. I don’t know whether 100 copies for a ticket is the right number, or how exactly this would work, but the concept seems really solid. Over time, it would give some value to the older commons. Right now, cards like Fishliver Oil are only priced at $0.02 because selling them for any less would not be worth the dealer’s time and effort. The actual value of those cards is much closer to zero. Allowing dealers to turn them into TIX would give those cards at least a minimal value, and make it possible for us players to sell them. It would also allow dealers to liquidate their stocks of bulk garbage. As I said, I don’t know what the right numbers might be, but I like the concept. 
 
Wizards, I am offering you this idea completely gratis. I’m not claiming any intellectual property rights, both because this sort of solution is pretty obvious and because I want to eliminate any possible objection to taking my suggestion.   We need this. The current client cannot handle collections like mine, but no one wants to buy out my cards. And I cannot practically donate or shred them. So let dealers redeem spare cards, so they can buy mine.
 
Maybe calling this “redemption” is confusing the issue, but what is needed is a way to get large numbers of surplus cards out of the system. Letting dealers turn huge numbers of junk commons into TIX would provide some incentive for them to buy bulk commons and get that part of the market flowing.   Alternatively, let us trade cards for phantom points. 
 
Give us something. Please.   
 
In the meantime, I will probably buy another account and start playing all my constructed from that account. And whining about it publically. That whining will more than offset the extra $10 you will get for the account. After all, I’m good at whining. 
 

Cutting Edge Tech:

Standard:  Last weekend’s MOCS finals was Standard.   The top two decks were both Mardu. They were not identical, but very similar.
 
 
Modern: GP Omaha was last weekend. The finals was a less than exciting match, since at least one player appeared to be pretty tired and making mistakes – and the draws were really one sided. Erik Peters took it down with Birthing Pod, but the second place deck – Amulet – may be the deck to watch out for. Stephen Speck played far better in the Swiss, and the Amulet deck proved explosive. It may be a contender at Pro Tour Fate Reforged. GP coverage is here.
 
 
KTK Block Constructed: Last weekend’s KTK block was large enough to have two players going 4-0. However, you could also claim that only one deck went 4-0, since both 4-0 players played essentially the same decklist.
 
 
Legacy: SCG ran Legacy last weekend. The winning deck was a Temur Delver deck that ran Kird Ape instead of Pyromancer and the non-bo of 4 Goyf plus 4 Treasure Cruise. I don’t see the synergy, but it won. Sure, Kird Ape survives Pyroclasm and stuff like Golgari Charm / Drown in Sorrow, but is that really enough to choose it over Pyromancer, Monesaery Swiftspear or Goblin Guide?
 
 
Vintage:  Vintage Dailies are firing on weekends. They aren’t big, but they happen. This week’s top deck makes me happy, because I have always loved Karn. I played a Karn deck in my very first Sanctioned event, back when Karn, Silver Golem was Standard legal. I used Thran Dynamos to power out stuff like (Urza’s Blueprint)s, then used Karn to turn them into attackers. Good times. 
 
 

Card Prices

Note: all my prices come from the fine folks at MTGOTraders.com. These are retail prices, and generally the price of the lowest priced, actively traded version. (Prices for some rare promo versions are not updated when not in stock, so I skip those.)   You can get these cards at MTGOTraders.com web store, or from their bots: MTGOTradersBot(#) (they have bots 1-10), CardCaddy and CardWareHouse, or sell cards to MTGOTradersBuyBot(#) (they have buybots 1-4). I have bought cards from MTGOTraders for almost a decade now, and have never been overcharged or disappointed.
 
Standard staples: Standard prices shuffled around a bit, but the changes from the last week are pretty small.  Perilous Vault s up – people are seeing the value of UB Control.
 

Standard & Block Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$10.04
$10.04
$0.00
0%
$6.44
$6.78
($0.34)
-5%
$21.63
$20.06
$1.57
8%
$13.88
$13.85
$0.03
0%
$14.68
$14.21
$0.47
3%
$8.18
$7.92
$0.26
3%
$21.49
$20.23
$1.26
6%
$17.38
$17.03
$0.35
2%
$8.41
$9.59
($1.18)
-12%
$7.18
$8.00
($0.82)
-10%
$17.43
$17.45
($0.02)
0%
$21.51
$21.72
($0.21)
-1%
$17.46
$14.99
$2.47
16%
$5.30
$4.83
$0.47
10%
$9.32
$8.91
$0.41
5%
$8.70
$8.68
$0.02
0%
$13.00
$13.19
($0.19)
-1%
$13.56
$13.09
$0.47
4%
$7.58
$17.52
$19.12
($1.60)
-8%
$13.52
$13.17
$0.35
3%

Modern staples:  Modern prices move around a bit, and are generally down since last week. MMA drafts are having a depressing effect on some cards, as is the uncertainty as we wait for the B&R list changes which will be announced next week. 
 

Modern Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$38.25
$39.80
($1.55)
-4%
$16.39
$21.32
($4.93)
-23%
$17.65
$19.38
($1.73)
-9%
$10.04
$12.11
($2.07)
-17%
$9.55
$9.84
($0.29)
-3%
$10.66
$11.36
($0.70)
-6%
$15.55
$16.16
($0.61)
-4%
$16.44
$17.46
($1.02)
-6%
$14.90
$14.21
$0.69
5%
$20.58
$21.35
($0.77)
-4%
$52.15
$52.15
$0.00
0%
$25.62
$25.04
$0.58
2%
$62.66
$62.66
$0.00
0%
$29.55
$28.13
$1.42
5%
$44.59
$46.56
($1.97)
-4%
$35.59
$33.61
$1.98
6%
$23.26
$20.76
$2.50
12%
$33.70
$43.20
($9.50)
-22%
$29.49
$35.14
($5.65)
-16%
$15.56
$14.00
$1.56
11%
$64.08
$68.57
($4.49)
-7%
$19.43
$20.29
($0.86)
-4%
$31.38
$37.40
($6.02)
-16%
$36.46
$30.98
$5.48
18%

Legacy / Vintage: Legacy and Vintage prices are pretty stable this week, except for VMA and some of the cards affected by flashback formats. True-Name Nemesis is down again, but it still costs more, in cash prices, than the precon that contains it. I guess people really hate buying from the store.  
 

Legacy / Vintage Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$58.20
$57.45
$0.75
1%
$159.17
$159.17
$0.00
0%
$38.42
$38.42
$0.00
0%
$29.42
$29.42
$0.00
0%
$29.86
$30.46
($0.60)
-2%
$30.99
$28.73
$2.26
8%
$11.49
$11.59
($0.10)
-1%
$36.81
$36.81
$0.00
0%
$27.28
$26.91
$0.37
1%
$26.85
$28.00
($1.15)
-4%
$27.44
$27.44
$0.00
0%
$17.64
$17.76
($0.12)
-1%
$13.59
$13.59
$0.00
0%
$104.59
$104.59
$0.00
0%
$51.38
$51.38
$0.00
0%
$76.88
$77.97
($1.09)
-1%
$148.15
$148.15
$0.00
0%
$44.51
$45.58
($1.07)
-2%
$32.22
$34.06
($1.84)
-5%
$47.44
$44.92
$2.52
6%
$33.57
$36.20
($2.63)
-7%
$19.25
$20.55
($1.30)
-6%
$32.31
$33.15
($0.84)
-3%
$101.61
$101.61
$0.00
0%

Set Redemption: You can redeem complete sets on MTGO. You need to purchase a redemption voucher from the store for $25. During the next downtime, Wizards removes a complete set from your account, and sends you the same set in paper.   For those of you who redeem, here are the retail prices of one of everything set currently available in the store, excluding sets that are not currently draftable or not redeemable.    
 

Complete Set
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
Born of the Gods
$79.68
$84.96
($5.28)
-6%
Journey into Nix
$118.35
$127.82
($9.47)
-7%
Khans of Trakir
$105.00
$105.51
($0.51)
0%
M15
$155.42
$144.89
$10.53
7%
Theros
$117.14
$115.16
$1.98
2%

 

The Good Stuff:

The following is a list of all the non-promo, non-foil cards on MTGO that retail for more than $25 per card.  These are the big ticket items in the world of MTGO. 
 

Name
Rarity
Set
 Price
Black Lotus
B
VMA
 $ 159.17
Rishadan Port
R
MM
 $ 148.15
Misdirection
R
MM
 $ 104.59
Wasteland
U
TE
 $ 101.61
Mox Sapphire
B
VMA
 $ 76.88
Tarmogoyf
M
MMA
 $ 65.62
Tarmogoyf
R
FUT
 $ 64.08
Liliana of the Veil
M
ISD
 $ 62.66
Ancestral Recall
B
VMA
 $ 58.20
Force of Will
R
MED
 $ 55.59
Griselbrand
M
AVR
 $ 52.15
Mox Jet
B
VMA
 $ 51.38
Infernal Tutor
R
DIS
 $ 48.85
Mox Ruby
B
VMA
 $ 48.36
Time Walk
B
VMA
 $ 47.44
Mox Opal
M
SOM
 $ 44.59
Show and Tell
R
UZ
 $ 44.51
City of Traitors
R
EX
 $ 38.42
Batterskull
M
NPH
 $ 38.25
Force of Will
R
VMA
 $ 36.81
Voice of Resurgence
M
DGM
 $ 36.46
Vendilion Clique
M
MMA
 $ 35.94
Noble Hierarch
R
CON
 $ 35.59
Tangle Wire
R
NE
 $ 34.82
Scalding Tarn
R
ZEN
 $ 33.70
True-Name Nemesis
R
C13
 $ 33.57
Toxic Deluge
R
C13
 $ 33.30
Mox Emerald
B
VMA
 $ 32.37
Undiscovered Paradise
R
VI
 $ 32.31
Sneak Attack
R
UZ
 $ 32.22
Volcanic Island
R
ME4
 $ 32.00
Volcanic Island
R
ME3
 $ 31.76
Vendilion Clique
R
MOR
 $ 31.38
Mox Pearl
B
VMA
 $ 31.25
Daze
C
NE
 $ 30.99
Daze
C
DD2
 $ 30.97
Dark Depths
R
CSP
 $ 29.86
Linvala, Keeper of Silence
M
ROE
 $ 29.55
Scapeshift
R
MOR
 $ 29.49
Containment Priest
R
C14
 $ 29.42
Auriok Champion
R
5DN
 $ 28.31
Intuition
R
TE
 $ 27.44
Lion's Eye Diamond
R
MI
 $ 27.32
Gaea's Cradle
R
UZ
 $ 27.28
Hurkyl's Recall
R
10E
 $ 26.85
Karn Liberated
M
NPH
 $ 25.62

The big number is the retail price of a playset (4 copies) of every card available on MTGO. Assuming you bought the least expensive version available, the cost of owning a playset of every card on MTGO you can own is $ 25,615. That’s down about $275 from where we were last week.
 

Weekly Highlights:

Last week and weekend were pretty good, from a Magic perspective.  I had time to draft. I played a bunch of Modern Masters, and broke almost completely even. I also played a bunch of Theros block, since I am trying to hoard my Khans packs until Fate Reforged is out.   Theros was actually really good to me, except for one 8-4 where I drafted a really good mono-black deck. In that one, my round one opponent dropped a turn three Master of the Feast on the play games one and three, and I never got to play with the deck.  It’s one reason I really prefer Swiss. 
 
The other drafts went well enough. 
 
This weekend will be the paper prerelease, plus some Conspiracy. On Sunday, the Packers will crush Seattle. Looking forward to it all.
 
 
PRJ
 
“one million words” and probably “1MWords” on MTGO
 
 
This series is an ongoing tribute to Erik “Hamtastic” Friborg.
 
HammyBot Still Running: HammyBot was set up to sell off Erik Friborg’s collection, with all proceeds going to his wife and son. So far, HammyBot has raised over $8,000, but there are a lot of cards left in the collection. Those cards are being sold at 10% below retail price. Erik died three years ago, so HammyBot does not include any standard legal cards, but it includes a ton of Masters Edition and Vintage cards, and some nice Modern bargains. 
 

 

15 Comments

Im not a huge fan of the by Paul Leicht at Fri, 01/16/2015 - 13:28
Paul Leicht's picture
5

Im not a huge fan of the Shredder idea but I like the idea of maybe being able to compact what isn't useful. (Sort of like putting stuff in a box and putting that box in your attic which is I imagine how players deal with real life cards they don't/can't sell. I ended up throwing out much of mine.)

If you could compact a card or group/set of cards you could uncompact it as needed but in the meantime they wouldn't clutter your editor/trade windows.

In fact instead of compacting just mark them as "don't include" on searches and they magically disappear. This would mean youd have to be a little careful of what you marked but you could always unmark stuff and you could have a checkbox in all the search areas that says "include marked cards".

I also like the donation bot idea except for the following: WOTC would never do this and Id be afraid that the bot wouldn't work properly if they did... Of course that also applies to any changes they make in the client via the collection issues.

Ah if only they could do stuff with programming without the curse applying its nasty effects.

This could be as simple as a by longtimegone at Sat, 01/17/2015 - 16:01
longtimegone's picture

This could be as simple as a special storage binder, one set so that cards moved to that binder would not display elsewhere in your collection.

I think the Temur delver is by Joe Fiorini at Fri, 01/16/2015 - 18:32
Joe Fiorini's picture
5

I think the Temur delver is supposed to be an updated version of canadian thresh, which was called rug delver for a while. I think the kird ape is more replacing the Nimble Mongoose, but i still wonder why it's better than swiftspear.

and playing with tarmogoyf and treasure cruise takes some advanced planning, i'm always checking both graveyards to see if I can afford to play cruise and what I can and can't afford to delve away.

I have a Izzet Delver deck by Joe Fiorini at Fri, 01/16/2015 - 18:33
Joe Fiorini's picture
5

I have a Izzet Delver deck that splashes for goyf, it's the first legacy deck I made. it is very different from canadian thresh/rug delver/temur delver. it doesn't have the resource denial plan. I want to make that temur deck, but wasteland is too much for me.

I'm exicted for UB control... by Wikki at Fri, 01/16/2015 - 19:28
Wikki's picture
5

I'm exicted for UB control... been playing it since KTK came out, already got my vaults and ashiok playsets. Now all i need is crux of fate playset and an Ugin or two and I'll be set. Gonna draft a lot i think, so hopefully i can grab a couple during that process.

on the subject of matching by Joe Fiorini at Fri, 01/16/2015 - 21:54
Joe Fiorini's picture
5

on the subject of matching playsets, I picked up my four copies of daze one or two at a time, choosing the cheaper ones. I didn't realize the prices shifted a bit, and now I have two of each version, and it's too expensive to replace. so, I'm stuck :(

I play with mixed playsets in by pierakor at Fri, 01/16/2015 - 22:21
pierakor's picture

I play with mixed playsets in Paper mostly because some cards are german and some are english but also because of different artworks. I've only played this way maybe 70 matches but it has NEVER made a difference. I do hate it online when my playsets don't have the same artwork but I doubt it has a significant impact on the game.

I think matching the basic by Rerepete at Sat, 01/17/2015 - 16:52
Rerepete's picture

I think matching the basic lands are most important, as you usually see more of them.

I doubt it has much impact by JMason at Mon, 01/19/2015 - 06:23
JMason's picture

I doubt it has much impact too. It's one of those mantras that gets repeated until it stops being questioned. I suppose in vintage and legacy where games are reduced to 3 or 4 turns and everyone has ways to probe the other players hand then it's conceivably going to change the outcome sometimes. In the formats that get played most though your hand is usually secret and different art is never going to matter.

The other mantra about when to pop a fetchland also needs reviewing. In commander for instance everyone already knows your colours, so fetch in your own turn, not at eot of the person before you.

It was definitely more by Paul Leicht at Mon, 01/19/2015 - 12:33
Paul Leicht's picture

It was definitely more important in the old days when hand denial was a thing. Because seeing what was in someone's hand gave you a ton of information if they didn't match their art. But probably not such an issue these days.

Fetching by Rerepete at Mon, 01/19/2015 - 19:17
Rerepete's picture

In Commander, if it is a ETB untapped fetch (Onslaught, Zendikar, KtK, Mirage) I wait until needed to crack it. If Evolving Wilds, or the like, I wait till just before my turn mostly because you never know if someone "group hugs" with an "everyone draws a card", which may change what basic land you grab.

And Armageddon IS a thing. by Paul Leicht at Mon, 01/19/2015 - 21:45
Paul Leicht's picture

And Armageddon IS a thing.

Armageddon doesn't care if by JMason at Tue, 01/20/2015 - 11:01
JMason's picture

Armageddon doesn't care if you sack your evolving wilds or not. Only difference would be one extra land in the yard.

Indeed! by Paul Leicht at Tue, 01/20/2015 - 12:59
Paul Leicht's picture

Indeed!

You were right. by Algona at Sun, 01/18/2015 - 20:21
Algona's picture

On Sunday, the Packers will crush Seattle." For 55 minutes...