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By: one million words, Pete Jahn
Oct 07 2016 11:38am
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 State of the Program for October 9th 2016

Pete’s Back
Hi, I’m back.  The break helped.  And many thanks to the people who filled in while I was gone.  I like what many of you did with the column, and I am looking at stealing adopting many of your ideas.  SotP looked really good in the last couple weeks.
 
That said, I can’t steal all of them.  PureMTGO has a premade interface for uploading articles.  I am limited to the tools in that toolbar.  I love what Procrastination did with the Judge Question, but the toolbar does not appear to support that sort of toggle.  I believe he coded that directly.  In theory, I could do that sort of thing, but I don’t have the skill to tweak it, nor the time.  I know I could make SotP a lot better if I relearned coding, but I just don’t have time.  (I’m already about 15 hours into this article – SotP eats time faster than MTGO.)  My co-worker used to call not having time to do those things that would save time in the long run “being too busy cutting to sharpen the saw.”  Definitely what this is, but the time pressure is real.
 
PureMTGO also has a decklist converter, which formats and inserts links for cards – some of them.  It does not always identify the most recent cards.  In the maindeck, it puts anything it does not recognize into the spells section.  If it does not recognize sideboard cards, it just deletes them.  If the decklist editor does not identify the card, then I have to manually insert the link to the MTGOTraders.com website.  I have not yet learned the code for the pop-outs.
 
I write in MS Word, because I own it and have been using word processing software since I typed the machine code for one into my Commodore 64 back in 1982.  I am far more comfortable in a word processor than in the article editor online.  More importantly, the autosave in MS Word works.  I live in the country, so Internet can be shaky.  After the first couple times I almost finished an article only to have the connection crash and the article disappear, I vowed to never again work in an online editor without autosave.  I always write in Word, then upload, but this does have limitations.  The article interface has some idiosyncrasies when digesting text from Word, and those idiosyncrasies vary by browser.  Annoying.  
 
But I digress.  I really just wanted to thank Josh, Kumagoro42, Xger, TheWolf, and Procrastination for filling in while I was away.   Now, let’s see what I can steal, starting with the full width banner headers.  I think that I can do what using a single cell table.  We will see.
 
In the News
Quick note:  I may repeat some of last week’s stories.  I started writing this before reading last Friday’s SotP.
 
Prereleases up Now!:  Wizards is starting the prerelease events early – they began with the downtime on Wednesday.  This is a trial, but if it goes well, expect this sort of start time going forward.  We likes it.
 
Draft and Sealed Deck Price Changes:   Wizards will be cutting the prices on most current Draft and Sealed deck events, beginning with Kaladesh and moving forward.  Drafts will cost 12 TIX or 120 Play points, and sealed events will cost 24 TIX or 240 play points.  The pricing of flashback drafts won’t change.  These changes are discussed in articles by Worth Wollpert (here) and Lee Sharpe (here).
 
MTGO Treasure Chests:  Wizards has announced that constructed events will now be paying out Treasure Chests in addition to, or as a replacement for, prize packs.  This was announced late last week (kudos to Chris for getting it in).  The announcement was here.  Player reaction was strong.  Partly in response, Wizards has provided more info on what is in the Treasure Chests.  That article is here.  I crunch the numbers below.
 
Changes to Function Keys:  Wizards is duplicating the functionality of the function keys (e.g. F6, F8) with on screen tabs, and alternative keys.  The traditional function keys still work, but Wizards has also mapped the functions to other keys, including those on the number pad.  Onscreen, the functions will also appear on the bottom of your hand, where you can click on them with the mouse.  That function bar toggles on and off.  This may be good, especially for those players who don’t know about many of these functions.  Alli Medwin’s article on the enhancements is here
 
Standard Rotation:  When Kaladesh became legal, older sets (Origins, Dragons of Tarkir) rotated out of Standard.   Standard now includes Battle for Zendikar , Oath of the Gatewatch, Shadows over Innistrad (including Welcome 2016),  Eldritch Moon and Kaladesh.  This includes the cards contained in the Nissa and Chandra paper Planeswalkers decks. 
 
Pack-per-Win Draft Leagues Ending:  Wizards is ending the pack-per-win draft leagues.  At present, the vast majority of players are playing in the 6-2-2 leagues, which are also Swiss format.  The low numbers of players in the pack-per-win league has resulted in long waits for matches, and those long waits meant the pack-per-win leagues were doomed, sooner or later.  
 
Older Draft Formats Ending:  In the past, Wizards offered drafts in all Standard-legal formats.  Going forward, they will only offer drafts in the current block and prior block.  This means, for now, Kaladesh and ROI/EMN.  If you ever sat in an older draft queue waiting for it to fire, you understand why Wizards is making this change.  I spent an hour and 45 minutes waiting for a Khans draft that never fired a while back, then gave up on ever using up those packs.  
 
Twitch.TV Boosts:  Amazon owns Twitch.tv, and now it is adding some bonuses for Twitch viewers and streamers.  Amazon Prime members will now automatically get Twitch Prime.  Amazon Prime members will also be able to subscribe to a channel for free – saving viewers some cash and helping out streamers.  Amazon also promises free skins, exclusive emoticons and so forth to Prime members.  Official announcement here.
 
Windows Vista Not Supported:  The most recent MTGO updates are not compatible with Windows Vista SP2.  If you are running Vista, you will need to update to at least Windows 7.  Rough, but Vista is almost a decade old.
 
Randy Buehler and Magic Broadcasting:  Wizards posted a tribute article that recaps Randy Buehler’s influence on Magic broadcasting.  You can view it here.  I highly recommend the video of the Davis/Maher match, about two-thirds of the way through.   The article is here.
 
 
The Timeline
This is a list of things we have been promised, or we just want to see coming back.   Another good source for dates and times is the weekly blog, while the best source for known bugs is the Known Issues List.  For quick reference, here are some major upcoming events.   In addition, there are either one or two online PTQs each weekend, with qualifiers running the three days prior to the PTQ.
 
Item: date and notes
  • Power Nine Challenge:  Last Saturday of the month, at 11am Pacific.  Next one October 29th. 
  • Legacy Challenge:  Second Saturday of the month, at 11am Pacific.  Next one this weekend.   
  • “You Make the Cube” Voting:  October 17-24th
  • No Downtime on these Dates:  October 12th, November 2nd, 9th and 30th and December 14th
  • League End Dates:  all current leagues ended October 5th.  New leagues end in January.
  • Kaladesh Prerelease:  happening now, on sale Monday.  Product code KLD.
  • From the Vault Lore:  releases online October 10, 2016.
  • Commander 2016:  paper release November 2016.  No MTGO release, but key cards will be released online in Treasure Chests.
  • Aether Revolt:  MTGO prerelease January 27-30, 2017, on sale January 30. Product code: AER
  • Modern Masters 2017 Edition: MTGO release March 23, 2017. Product code: MM3.
  • Amonkhet:  Spring 2017 release
  • Kaladesh Sealed MOCS events:  October 29th, December 4th, 11th, 18th and 30th.  Details here.
  • Standard MOCS events:  November 6th and25th.  Details here.
  • Modern MOCS events:  January 7th and 21st.   Details here.
Flashback Schedule:
Flashback drafts are 10Tix / 100 Play Points / 2 Tix plus product, not Phantom, single elim and pay out in play points:  200 for first, 100 for second, 50 for third and fourth. 
  •  (pause for Kaladesh release events)
  • Triple Innistrad:  October 26 to November 2
  • Dark Ascension, 2 Innistrad:  November 2 to November 9
  • Triple Magic 2012: November 9 to November 16
  • Triple Avacyn Restored: November 16 to November 23
  • Triple Magic 2013:  November 23 to November 30
  • Triple Return to Ravnica:  November 30 to December 7
  • Triple Gatecrash:  December 7 to December 14
  • Dragon’s Maze, Gatecrash, Return to Ravnica:  December 14 to December 21
 
Flashback This Week:  Flashback drafts are in hiatus, since everyone will be drafting Kaladesh.  That set is great, so go to it.    
 
Opinion Section:  Wow, Kaladesh is Sweet!
I had been, over the last year or so, turning into one of those Magic commentators who don’t actually play the game.  Part of it was a frustration with the Standard format, part of that was the annoyance of sitting around waiting for events to fire and rounds to start, and part of that was being really sick of story lines about how something horrible was destroying the world and the population was dying.  Eldrazi Moon was the capper – the store promo poster was a giant Emrakul, all dark and drab grays with streaks of purple, and you put gray zombie tokens all over it as a “reward.”  So depressing and bland.
 
Kaladesh reverses all that.  The colors are bright.  The world is interesting, and the people in it are doing things (things other than dying in pain.)   The storyline is about invention and creativity.  It is an incredibly welcome relief.  I just hope that the next set’s theme is not “all the inventors get Alzheimer’s disease and everything rusts, because Emrakul.”  Enough, Wizards.  Leave us one nice world we could actually come back to.
 
I could also rave about draft queues, but I’m saving that for some future opinion section.     
 
Doing the Math:  Treasure Chests
On to the meat of the article.  Wizards has given us some additional information on the Treasure Chests.  We can crunch the numbers. 
 
Let’s start with the basics.  Wizards is changing the prize payout for constructed events.  Let’s look at a few.  (I pirated these numbers from MTGOGoldfish.)
 
Friendly Constructed Leagues (entry 8 TIX or 80 play points)
Finish
Old Payout
New Payout
5 wins
2 boosters plus 150 play points
8 Treasure Chests plus 80 play points
4 wins
1 booster plus 120 play points
3 Treasure Chests plus 80 play points
3 wins
80 play points
1 Treasure Chest plus 80 play points
2 wins
40 play points
40 play points
1 win
20 play points
20 play points
0 wins
10 play points
10 play points
 
 
Competitive Constructed Leagues (entry 12 TIX or 120 play points)
Finish
Old Payout
New Payout
5 wins
10 boosters, 120 Play Points, 3 QP
6 boosters, 8 Treasure Chests, 180 play points, and 3 QP
4 wins
6 boosters, 120 Play Points, 1 QP
3 boosters, 2 Treasure Chests, 180 Play Points, and 1QP
3 wins
120 Play Points
1 Treasure Chest plus 120 Play Points
The Vintage Daily Events have a similar change.   Those events still pay out the same number of boosters, but fewer play points in return for Treasure Chests. 
 
Let’s look at the Friendly constructed leagues, and at first place.  The change is prize payout in that league is a loss of 2 booster packs and 70 play points in return for 8 Treasure Chests.  The question is whether players are better or worse off.
 
First of all, let’s value those boosters.  The old prize payout paid one SOI and one EMN booster.   A month or so ago, before this news hit, SOI boosters were selling for $2.60, while EMN boosters were retailing for $4.04.  Call the combination $6.60, which is reasonably typical.   Booster prices fluctuate and vary depending on what is being paid out in prizes, but let’s use an average an average retail value of $3.30 per booster.   That would be reduced a bit under the new system, since it will actually cost more to draft with boosters (3 packs plus 2 TIX) than straight TIX (12 TIX), so we should probably round down a smidge but never mind.  Call the value of the reduction in prizes $6.60 plus 70 play points.
 
So what is the value of the Treasure Chests?  Wizards has given us more information on the odds.  Treasure Chests – let’s call them TCs, because my fingers are getting tired of typing Treasure Chest – contain three slots.  Each slot can contain several different things.  Here’s the breakdown Wizards has given us:
 
Slot
Curated Card
Modern Rare/Mythic
Play Points
Commons
Slot 1
19%
51%
30%
0%
Slot 2
5%
16%
0%
79%
Slot 3
1%
1%
0%
98%
 
Curated Cards are cards off a list chosen by Wizards.  The list is 635 cards long.  I’ll talk about curated cards later, but let’s look at play points first.  Wizards has given us a frequency table for play points in the TC.  If the TC contains play points, it will contain some multiple of ten, from 10 to 1000.   The frequency table gives use the odds of each prize payout as a percentage.  Multiplying each possible prize payout by the odds of that prize appearing, and then again by the 30% odds of play points being in the TC shows that the average TC is going to contain about 7.5 play points.  Here’s the frequency table and odds. 
 
Play Pts
Frequency
Odds
Play Point EV
10
500
22.72%
2.27
15
500
22.72%
3.41
20
500
22.72%
4.54
30
300
13.63%
4.09
40
300
13.63%
5.45
80
50
2.27%
1.82
120
50
2.27%
2.73
1000
1
0.05%
0.45
Summing the play point EV gives a total of about 25, or 7.5 when multiplied by the 30% chance of getting a parcel of play points in the Treasure Chest.  This means that the eight TCs in the new prize payout will almost completely erase the reduction in prize play points.  On average, 8 TCS will produce 60 play points. With a reduction of 70 play points in prizes, we are short 10 play points, or roughly $1.  That was the easy part.  Let’s move on to compare the $6.50 value of the lost boosters with the value of the non-play point contents of eight TCs.
 
I could calculate the average value of a modern rare or Mythic, but since the vast, vast majority of all rares cost under a nickel, the handful of Liliana of the Veils get lost in the numbers.  Let’s just assume that the value of a Modern-legal Mythic or rare is $0.05, and the value of the commons or uncommons at just $0.01.  That seems safe enough.  A lot of BOTS buy commons for less than that.  While you could get super lucky and get a Tarmogoyf in the Modern Rare/Mythic slot, it seems safe enough to assume that the average TC gains at most about $0.05 from the non-curated cards in the TCs.
 
Which brings us to the curated cards.  Each slot has a chance to be a curated card.  I went through the list of 635 curated cards.  I have some observations.
 
First, Wizards was thinking about Pauper.  A number of scarce Pauper staples are on the list – cards like Crypt Rats and Flame Rift.   Wizards also added a few cards that are popular with the Commander crowd and so forth.
 
It looks like Wizards chose cards from all the cards on MTGO, except those in Standard and those just rotating out of Standard.   Excluding Standard, along with Khan’s Block and Origins makes sense.  We have those cards.  We have opened many of them, and are still opening them (except maybe Khan’s block and Origins.)  We don’t need TCs to get Standard cards into the system.  As for Khan’s block and Origins, those cards are dropping in price right now due to rotation.  They would make terrible prizes.   I think that Wizards is using the TCs to get cards that are in short supply into the card pool.  From that perspective, it makes perfect sense to me to include only cards from older sets in the Treasure Chests. 
 
It looks like Wizards went through the entire list of cards on MTGO and added pretty much everything that had any value.  I found a handful of exceptions, like Pendelhaven, that missed out, but only a handful.  I know.  I entered the prices for every card on the list.  While doing so, I scrolled through the entire list of cards available on MTGO.  That is over 22,000 cards, not including foils, promos and specials.  That is a lot of cards, and I only found a half dozen cards with real value that are not on the list.  Which makes sense – Wizards will want a little wiggle room.  If they find that some cards crash in value or just don’t work, they can swap those out and swap in Pendelhaven and friends. 
 
I also think I may have found a couple typos – cards that were mistakenly included in the list instead of the card immediately above or below them in the alphabetical list of cards on MTGO.  For example, Stitch in Time is on the list, despite being an almost unplayable $0.15 card.  However, on an alphabetical list of cards, it is immediately adjacent to Stitcher Geralf, which is expensive and was only printed in a Commander set.  Is it possible someone clicked on the wrong card when setting up the list in the article?   I would not be surprised.  Likewise, the list in the Magic Online article lists Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir (Time spiral rare worth $0.49) as being in the set, instead of Teferi, Temporal Archmage (commander set and worth $8.76).   Eiganjo Castle (worth $0.15) is on the list, but one card above it is Eidolon of the Great Revel, which is not.  And Darien, King of Kjeldor is worth $0.15 and on the list, but Daretti, Scrap Savant, is one click away and worth $4.24.  I am also wondering whether having Helm of Possession but not Helm of Obedience is a similar sort of error.   If not, why Helm of Possession?  For that matter, why include Exotic Orchard?  Yes, I wrote the preview article for that card, but it has been reprinted, is not in short supply, and is cheap.
 
But I digress.  Back to calculating the EV of Treasure Chests and curated cards.   As I said, I created a spreadsheet with all 635 cards in the base list.  I then entered the prices, and did the same weighting for the cards that I did for the play points, above.  The result:  the average values of a curated card will be about $5.06, and that is using the list as printed in the article.  If I am right about Eidolon of the Great Revel and so forth, that number would increase slightly, but let’s use $5.06.  Multiplying that by the odds of opening a curated card (19% for slot one, 5% for slot two, and 1% for slot three), the average value of curated cards per Treasure Chest is $1.26.  Add in the nickel or so from the other cards, and we get an average value of a Treasure Chest of about $1.30, plus 7.25 play points.
 
So, the value of prizes under the old price payout for Friendly Constructed leagues was $6.60 plus 150 play points.   If we equate 10 play points to 1 TIX to $1, that’s a total payout for first place of $21.60   The value of the prizes under the new system is 8 * $1.30 plus 8 * 7.25 play points, plus 80 play points.  That total is $10.40 + 60 PP + 80 PP or $24.40.
 
Wow, Treasure Chests are worth MORE that the boosters.  The new prize payout is BETTER than the old one.  At least for first place in a friendly league.  Time for more math, using the same sort of assumptions:  booster pack worth $3.30, 10 play points worth $1.  Note that I am ignoring QPs, since those do not change at all.  I am also not retyping the prize payout for lower finishes, since those are also unchanged.
 
Finish
Friendly Old
Friendly New
Comp. Old
Comp. New
5-0
$21.60
$24.40
$45.00
$44.20
4-1
$15.30
$13.05
$31.80
$28.00
3-2
$8.00
$10.05
$12.00
$14.05
Or if you don’t equate play points to cash (since PPs are not tradeable?), then you get this table.  Remember that the Treasure Chests also include play points.
 
Finish
Friendly Old
Friendly New
Comp. Old
Comp. New
5-0
$6.60 +150 PP
$10.40 + 140 PP
$33.00 + 120 PP
$30.10 + 240 PP
4-1
$3.30 + 120 PP
$3.90 + 101 PP
$19.80 + 120 PP
$12.50 + 196 PP
3-2
80  PP
$1.30 + 87 PP
120 PP
$1.30 + 127 PP
 A whole lot of math later, I don’t see a huge difference.  Players going 5-0 will get more prizes.  Players going 4-1 will be slightly worse off, but anyone finishing 3-2 will make more.  Treasure Chests are now tradeable, and nearly all of the cards inside them should be fairly easy to sell.  The cards should hold their prices fairly well.   We don’t have much data about how many people finish leagues every day, and certainly not how many finish at each level every day, but with 600+ cards, the market should not saturate quickly.  However, if the demand for Food Chains does prove to be really small, Wizards can always swap out Food Chain for Pendelhaven, and so forth.
 
 Overall, I think this is a really good change.  
 
Cutting Edge Tech
Standard:  In the paper world, Kaladesh is legal.  Last weekend, SCG ran the first large event to feature Kaladesh.  We saw a brief appearance of a combo deck, but the deck that sped to the front is one built around vehicles.  The vehicles deck won, and with two more copies in the Top 8.   This is one archetype Wizards built for us -  it is even available in the Chandra precon paper deck. 
 

 

 
Modern:  I ran a Modern PPTQ last weekend.  Most of the usual suspects were there, but one interesting archetype made it to the finals.  The finals players split, so there was no winner, but this deck is at least interesting.


Legacy: 
SCG also ran a Legacy Classic event.   It was not huge (80 or so), and did not feature many new cards, but it was what we had.  Here’s my favorite archetype from those in the Top 8.
 
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 over a decade now, and have never been overcharged or disappointed.
 
Okay, I am going to use the price tables with the cards that were on them in September.  I am going to add Kaladesh, cull these tables, and move cards into more appropriate tables – but next week.  I spent way too much time on the Treasure Chest analysis.  No time this week.
 
Standard staples:  We see what rotation does to card values.  Also, we have some new deck archetypes in the paper world, and those decks are having an impact.   
 
Standard  Cards
Price
September
Change
% Change
$14.54
$15.12
($0.58)
-4%
$6.90
$7.70
($0.80)
-10%
$9.73
$11.95
($2.22)
-19%
Emrakul, the Promised End
$10.92
$8.74
$2.18
25%
$19.57
$17.23
$2.34
14%
$11.43
$6.30
$5.13
81%
$7.83
$6.89
$0.94
14%
$18.23
$28.48
($10.25)
-36%
$14.75
$20.50
($5.75)
-28%
$14.48
$17.05
($2.57)
-15%
Liliana, the Last Hope
$27.13
$33.37
($6.24)
-19%
$11.75
$12.60
($0.85)
-7%
$6.57
$5.55
$1.02
18%
$1.90
$15.56
($13.66)
-88%
Sylvan Advocate
$5.12
$5.10
$0.02
0%
$6.05
$5.72
$0.33
6%
Modern staples:   Modern has dropped a lot since I ran the numbers in late September.
 
Modern Cards
Price
September
Change
% Change
$18.52
$27.94
($9.42)
-34%
$20.55
$23.46
($2.91)
-12%
$19.38
$22.11
($2.73)
-12%
$36.14
$27.40
$8.74
32%
$39.31
$41.35
($2.04)
-5%
$17.74
$25.95
($8.21)
-32%
$15.30
$17.77
($2.47)
-14%
$28.82
$24.94
$3.88
16%
$23.21
$30.31
($7.10)
-23%
$26.61
$29.04
($2.43)
-8%
$28.10
$28.41
($0.31)
-1%
$23.70
$27.48
($3.78)
-14%
$92.47
$104.18
($11.71)
-11%
$25.01
$27.75
($2.74)
-10%
$23.97
$26.58
($2.61)
-10%
$27.65
$29.28
($1.63)
-6%
$42.82
$49.10
($6.28)
-13%
$26.80
$39.49
($12.69)
-32%
Legacy and Vintage:  Legacy and Vintage are also generally down.  Power prices have fallen a lot.  It will be interesting to see if Vintage picks up after the changeover, since Vintage is still paying out mainly in boosters.
 
Legacy / Vintage Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$27.43
$41.42
($13.99)
-34%
$101.40
$115.98
($14.58)
-13%
$21.92
$28.40
($6.48)
-23%
$34.46
$31.65
$2.81
9%
$26.58
$28.81
($2.23)
-8%
$44.73
$46.67
($1.94)
-4%
$46.22
$37.98
$8.24
22%
$18.27
$23.80
($5.53)
-23%
$39.15
$45.05
($5.90)
-13%
$34.82
$34.25
$0.57
2%
$80.87
$85.02
($4.15)
-5%
$20.36
$30.87
($10.51)
-34%
$48.57
$62.65
($14.08)
-22%
$257.11
$242.43
$14.68
6%
$50.72
$51.32
($0.60)
-1%
$53.15
$52.25
$0.90
2%
$21.11
$35.26
($14.15)
-40%
$36.10
$38.11
($2.01)
-5%
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.   Also, one last shot for Khan’s block and Origins.
 
Complete Set
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
Battle for Zendikar
$52.57
$56.84
($4.27)
-8%
Dragons of Tarkir
$53.41
$57.38
($3.97)
-7%
Eldritch Moon
$94.23
$87.26
$6.97
8%
Magic Origins
$51.74
$76.30
($24.56)
-32%
Oath of the Gatewatch
$85.37
$95.60
($10.23)
-11%
Shadows over Innistrad
$62.23
$66.26
($4.03)
-6%
The Good Stuff
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.   The list has shrink since I posted this a month ago.  Back then we had 65 cards on the list.  Now we have about 50 cards.      
 
Name
Set
Rarity
 Price
Rishadan Port
 MM
Rare
 $ 257.11
Black Lotus
 VMA
Bonus
 $ 101.40
Liliana of the Veil
 ISD
Mythic Rare
 $ 92.47
Misdirection
 MM
Rare
 $ 80.87
Engineered Explosives
 5DN
Rare
 $ 54.27
Tangle Wire
 NE
Rare
 $ 53.15
Show and Tell
 UZ
Rare
 $ 50.72
Mox Sapphire
 VMA
Bonus
 $ 48.57
Food Chain
 MM
Rare
 $ 46.22
Exploration
 UZ
Rare
 $ 44.73
Tarmogoyf
 FUT
Rare
 $ 44.60
Tarmogoyf
 MM2
Mythic Rare
 $ 43.73
Tarmogoyf
 MMA
Mythic Rare
 $ 42.82
Engineered Explosives
 MMA
Rare
 $ 42.09
Cavern of Souls
 AVR
Rare
 $ 39.31
Gaea's Cradle
 UZ
Rare
 $ 39.15
Blood Moon
 9ED
Rare
 $ 38.56
Containment Priest
 PZ1
Rare
 $ 38.19
Wasteland
 TE
Uncommon
 $ 38.17
Blood Moon
 MMA
Rare
 $ 38.01
Wasteland
 TPR
Rare
 $ 36.61
Blood Moon
 8ED
Rare
 $ 36.14
Wasteland
 EMA
Rare
 $ 36.10
Back to Basics
 UZ
Rare
 $ 35.59
Infernal Tutor
 DIS
Rare
 $ 34.82
Containment Priest
 C14
Rare
 $ 34.46
Unmask
 MM
Rare
 $ 32.23
Ensnaring Bridge
 7E
Rare
 $ 32.01
Moat
 MED
Rare
 $ 31.62
Lion's Eye Diamond
 MI
Rare
 $ 30.83
Force of Will
 MED
Rare
 $ 30.82
True-Name Nemesis
 PZ1
Mythic Rare
 $ 30.58
Ensnaring Bridge
 8ED
Rare
 $ 29.80
Volcanic Island
 ME4
Rare
 $ 28.99
Ensnaring Bridge
 ST
Rare
 $ 28.82
Horizon Canopy
 FUT
Rare
 $ 28.10
Volcanic Island
 ME3
Rare
 $ 27.80
Scapeshift
 MOR
Rare
 $ 27.65
Chalice of the Void
 MMA
Rare
 $ 27.62
Ancestral Recall
 VMA
Bonus
 $ 27.43
Liliana& the Last Hope
 EMN
Mythic Rare
 $ 27.13
Voice of Resurgence
 DGM
Mythic Rare
 $ 26.80
Undiscovered Paradise
 VI
Rare
 $ 26.79
Grove of the Burnwillows
 FUT
Rare
 $ 26.61
Doomsday
 WL
Rare
 $ 26.58
Mox Opal
 MM2
Mythic Rare
 $ 26.29
Chalice of the Void
 MRD
Rare
 $ 26.06
Twilight Mire
 EVE
Rare
 $ 25.77
Golgari Grave-Troll
 DDJ
Rare
 $ 25.09
Mox Opal
 SOM
Mythic Rare
 $ 25.01
 
The big number is the retail price of a playset (4 copies) of every card available on MTGO. Assuming you bought the least expensive versions available, the cost of owning a playset of every card on MTGO is $ 24,040.  (Kaladesh not included.)   In September, that number was $25,900.  Prices always drop just before rotation, and people always panic sell whenever Wizards announces anything.  It would make a lot more sense to crunch the numbers, first.  Or maybe not sell into a down market.  Or whatever – but I am applying logic to impulsive behavior. Time to move on.
 
Weekly Highlights
The month “off” helped.  Work got a bit less incessant, and most of the garden and fields have been harvested.  More importantly, draft leagues are fantastic.  I can squeeze drafts in any time I have some spare time.  I think I drafted online a half dozen times between January 1st and mid-September, when draft leagues were launched.  Since then, I have done at least a dozen, and probably more, SOI/EMN drafts.   I knew draft leagues would fit my schedule better – I just had no idea how much better.  
 
PRJ
 
“One Million Words” and “3MWords” on MTGO
 
This series is an ongoing tribute to Erik “Hamtastic” Friborg.
 
HammyBot Super Sale:  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 MTGOTrader’s Buy Price.   
 
 

 

15 Comments

Welcome back! by Sensei at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 11:18
Sensei's picture

You were missed

The Lee Sharpe link is missing

fixed, thank you by JXClaytor at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 11:38
JXClaytor's picture

fixed, thank you

Wow, I didn't even think by Cheater Hater at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 12:07
Cheater Hater's picture

Wow, I didn't even think about the possibility of typos in the data--I know the odds are slim, but has anyone opened one of those commanders or Helm of Possession yet? (Eidolon of the Great Revel isn't conclusive since it's a Modern rare)

Also, any particular reason the format price lists aren't hover-capable yet? I'm assuming that's something that will be fixed once the Kaladesh update rolls in (and hopefully the "The Good Stuff" list will get hovers at that point as well).

I found several typos in both by xger at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 13:12
xger's picture

I found several typos in both lists while working on my article. I even noticed a clearly mistakenly missing card (Scalding Tarn, normal version, which was added to the list once I pointed it out). So, I do not doubt in the least there are other errors.

As for the hover links, it has to do with the bolding of the card names while the "(" is not bolded. I've been working on an addition to handle that as well. I can try and push it out to Josh for next week, as well as fixing some other errors

no hover by one million words at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 13:55
one million words's picture

actually, it is because I pasted the links into the table before uploading, because so many of the cards would not work just using (card name). If that function works, including for cards with punctuation, I will go back to using parentheses.

I appreciate all your work. Thanks.

The file I gave Josh to use by xger at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 17:47
xger's picture

The file I gave Josh to use for hover links accounts for everything (as far as I am aware), including puncuation. (Except for Uzra's block which I am fixing soon). You should be able to just use (card name), regardless of card or set (including Kaladesh, and even the masterpieces).

Oh, using just (cardname) by Cheater Hater at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 23:47
Cheater Hater's picture

Oh, using just (cardname) instead of (cardname:set) works with hovers now? When was that added?

Shortly after the new writers by JXClaytor at Sat, 10/08/2016 - 04:19
JXClaytor's picture

Shortly after the new writers guide went up if I recall correctly .

Welcome back, Pete. Hope you by Paul Leicht at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 14:12
Paul Leicht's picture
5

Welcome back, Pete. Hope you are at full steam again. :D

Interesting comment when you by Cauchy at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 14:21
Cauchy's picture

Interesting comment when you write that you are applying logic to impulsive behavior.

As I read it you are saying that the market will go up later so people should not sell out. So you are claiming that you can predict the market. But as I remember your speculation experiment your conclusion was that it could not be done.

Or whatever - I am assuming consistency in logic over time which may not apply ;) time to move on.

I think it has to do more by Rerepete at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 19:11
Rerepete's picture

I think it has to do more with history repeating itself, rather than prediction of the market.

Batterskull is now 16ish (it dropped 7 tix in the last week). Do you think it will stay that low?

sort of by one million words at Sat, 10/08/2016 - 09:58
one million words's picture

I was more commenting on those people whose immediate reaction to a change is to assume MTGO is dying and to sell out, before doing the math to actually analyze the impact of the changes. I was not attempting to predict the market so much as commenting on impulsive actions.

Hi Pete, first of all, by rodrigo at Fri, 10/07/2016 - 22:12
rodrigo's picture

Hi Pete, first of all, welcome back!!

Nice job here. I love read this article every Friday. It's my main MTGO information source!!

I notice that there's something not right with the maths in your last 2 tables.
Let's see...

5-0 finish:
For competitive old says $45, then it breaks in $33+120PP, what is right.
However for competitive new says $44.20, then breaks in $30.10+240PP, what it's not right..
$30.10+240PP should be ~30+24=$54, not $44.

Isn't it?? Or I'm messing it up?

Nice to have you back! The by ricklongo at Sun, 10/09/2016 - 07:04
ricklongo's picture
5

Nice to have you back! The full width banners are a minor addition, but easier on the eyes, which I dig. Props to whoever came up with them.

Welcome back! by mtgotraders at Mon, 10/10/2016 - 09:24
mtgotraders's picture
5
Great article as always. Nice to have you back Pete.