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The Magic Market Index for Jan 12, 2018
Treasure Cruisin' Tempered Steel
The Magic Market Index for Jan 5, 2018
  • posted a message on Is Commander killing Magic?
    Quote from DirkGently »
    Wouldn't it be more accurate to say that both competitive and casual help to support wotc (and by extension, each other)?

    All the info I see says that singles and packaged product are both profitable, but different stores do better with different things (although I welcome more detailed info, and if I remember I might ask my LGS owner). Personally I feel like I blow a lot of money on drafts relative to anything I see constructed players spending, but then I don't buy any singles from my LGSs as they don't usually have the selection I need (I do usually buy my sleeves from them, though, so between that and the drafts I think I do my patriotic duty).
    Competitive play, particularly limited, definitely supports WotC and LGSs as well. Cards are still designed for them, someone is still opening packs for the singles they buy, and they're still buying other products at the LGS. My point was more that they're a smaller portion of the MtG playerbase and don't necessarily spend proportionally more than casual players. I feel that the segment of the MtG population that's willing to go online and discuss the game on a forum is going to overemphasize the importance of it (this entire thread is predicated on the idea that the game is dead if people don't play competitively) so it's worth trying to be a casual voice in the discussion. Statements like "Competitive players are the lifeblood of MTG, they are what drives Standard and Modern in order to make it possible for Casual players to play Commander" are elitist and incorrect no matter which way you slice it. Virtually no one starts as a competitive player. Casual players manage to play the game just fine without any competitive influence.

    On margins, you can get a rough estimate by looking at buying and selling prices online. Grabbing the format staples for standard from mtggoldfish and looking at TCGplayer market buy/sell prices, average margin in USD of the top 10 cards in standard is $1.25, or 142.7%. If you pull out the commons that most players can reasonably be assumed to have (Negate and Duress) to make it a more accurate picture, those numbers are $1.54 and 73.1%. Highest margin is $4.37 for The Scarab God, lowest is $0.31 for Bomat Courier. For constructed events, the only one I go to on an even semi-regular basis is a legacy weekly that pays out 100% of entry fees in store credit (so margins for the event are just those of everything else in store, though it acts a lot like an interest free loan in many cases). I doubt events with less generous payouts are making much more than $1-2/head, or they're likely to have trouble drawing enough of a crowd to make it worth it. Compare that to water, soda, chips, or candy all of which can easily be purchased in bulk on the order of a few USD per dozen or less and sold individually for $0.75-1.00, a profit of $0.50-0.75 (2-300%). Boxes are sold by distributors for somewhere in the $70-80 range, then resold whole for $90-100+ or pieced into packs with MSRP $4 ($144 total, $126 at $3.50 a pack - still $46 profit). Selling a case of water or a box of loose packs arguably makes as much as someone coming in and buying a standard deck complete if you didn't open boxes for the singles, and I know a lot more people who are willing to buy a bottle or two of water each time they play than I do buying full decks in a single purchase. I'm sure there are outliers who do very well on large singles sales. I suspect the majority are relying on high volumes of small sales of a variety of products.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Is Commander killing Magic?
    Commander isn't advertised as a competitive format when the problem is that it's become the only viable format for most players to turn to due to the toxicity of Standard, Modern, and Legacy. As an end result, it ends up hurting all these other formats that are needed to drive growth for local game stores in order to stay in business so that players actually have a venue to play Commander. Casual players need to understand that Competitive players are the lifeblood of MTG, they are what drives Standard and Modern in order to make it possible for Casual players to play Commander.
    I'm pretty sure you have this backwards. Virtually everything that I've read online from LGS owners and WotC employees suggests that casual players are more of a sustaining force than competitive players. On the overall game side, there were somewhere between 12-20 million MtG players as of several years ago, and somewhere in the neighborhood of 500k DCI numbers (can find sources if anyone is interested - there's some guesswork and extrapolation involved). The vast majority of magic players aren't competitive enough to even go to FNM and there's a significant population who don't go to the LGS. I'd be very surprised if there were enough competitive players buying new product, either directly or via secondary sellers, to cover R&D, production, and distribution costs no matter how good constructed formats are. On the LGS side, the items where there's more money being made are sealed products, supplies, and non-MtG items like snacks and drinks. Margins on singles and constructed events are small. EDH players can contribute just as much to a store's livelihood as competitive players, because they're as interested in the higher margin goods as any of the constructed players. Probably more so, with the regular release of EDH precons.

    Even getting past all that, EDH players don't need an LGS to play. It makes it easier to find players, especially if you don't have an established group, and it makes it easier to decide a location for some groups, but there's not any particular incentive to play at a shop much of the time. My group usually plays in a bar. We've also played in houses/apartments, restaurants, and a hospital. I can't tell you the last time I saw a constructed event outside of an LGS or large space reserved for that purpose. If either group is subsidizing the other, it's casual players propping up competitive players.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on [Offtopic] Community Thread
    Quote from motleyslayer »
    does anyone else have varying power level in theri decks/different power level of decks to match their play group(s)? I'd say my Sharuum deck is not like cEDH levels of power but I've put a fair amount into it, Yidris is good but not well tuned (people still find it pretty good though) and Sidisi Brood tyrant which is meant to be silly (and my pretty recent deck which I decided to build for something different).

    Reasons why i did this was because I found myself getting targeted a lot in games because my decks were usually one of the best at the table and one of the main groups that plays a lot of commander around here is pretty casual. Then I realized having 3 decks with different power levels could be kinda interesting
    I mostly just build terrible decks and don't worry about it. I've been playing with more or less the same group for 5+ years at this point, though. We're pretty well dialed in to where we want to be.

    Tried Kopi Luwak (from a place that prides itself on fair trade coffee, so I'm reasonably sure they did their homework on the origin and it was ethically collected) for the first time this morning. It's interesting coffee. It's not particularly good coffee, but it's interesting.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on To what degree do you agree or disagree with this statement: "Commander/EDH is a battlecruiser format"?
    Somewhat agree. EDH gives you more opportunities to play the battlecruiser cards and they're unquestionably more prevalent at most levels of play in EDH than in constructed formats (omitting casual play). Playing them does not excuse terrible deckbuilding, nor is it the only way to play EDH.

    I might still call it a battlecruiser format because they feel like a defining characteristic in most games that I play.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on [[Primer]] Mono-R Control with Jaya Ballard!
    Quote from Zygous »
    Mt thinking is that the most common types of instant and sorceries you are going to see in graveyards are ramp spells, tutors, and removal. Every once in a while, somebody will have a crazy bomb spell in the graveyard to steal, like a Time Warp or Insurrection; but those will be rare. I think that paying 5 for a 2/1 plus Cultivate or 4 for a 2/1 plus Demonic Tutor seems strong. Ofsource, there is only so much I can say about the card until it comes out and we actually get to play with it.
    This is basically my take on it. If it ends up being a semi-reliable Disenchant/Swords I'm cool with that and it doesn't seem like that much of a stretch in a multiplayer EDH game. I haven't even had a chance to play since it was spoiled (no checking out options in GYs), so it may take a bit for me to decide how much I like it, but I'm very optimistic.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day: Rats of Rath
    Quote from Lithl »
    The same reason butterfly eggs hatch into caterpillars, not butterflies. Camarids are the juvenile stage of life for homarids.
    Sure, but this seems like a good opportunity to let gameplay considerations trump flavor (with the full understanding that I'm talking about a period in the game where the rules around this were not well defined). It's basically the same problem I have with nagas in Khans block having a unique type instead of snake.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Pain's Reward
    Quote from Kajarak32 »
    Pain's Reward

    Been thinking about it recently for a few of my decks, specifically one that has a life gain theme. So, what's the verdict? Great, good, ok, bad? Discuss! Smile
    I once paid 30+ life into it to draw 4 cards and then died when my opponent could get around my planned protection. A+ card, would play again.

    It's fine when you're either reasonably sure you're going to win the bidding or can capitalize on an opponent paying more than you, typically by being aggressive enough for the large life payment to matter. It has the potential to be a terrible topdeck when you're behind, which is not where I like my card draw to be. I would personally rate it below Ambition's Cost and Ancient Craving most of the time, behind Night's Whisper/Sign in Blood/Read the Bones almost all the time, and would sometimes even consider Infernal Contract/Cruel Bargain before it if I was sure my manabase could support it and I didn't think the large life payment would matter (for context, I can be reasonably sure that at least a couple people in my group would try and push the life payment on Pain's Reward about that high when possible anyways). I'd have to be very deep into black card draw to play this most of the time.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day: Rats of Rath
    Essential part of homarid tribal strats.

    The homarids are actually not as terrible as I remember them being, though I still don't understand why Homarid Spawning Bed makes camarid tokens. I've even seen Deep Spawn in play before.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Is Commander killing Magic?
    Quote from Xcric »
    i disagree.
    Its just a flavor of magic. I can like cake but hate vanilla cake. For many, even with infinite time and money, they still wouldnt participate in other formats. A good example is that i have a deck for legacy, a competitive one, but i do not go to events. we pick and choose the formats we want to participate in, no one forces themselves to participate in a format they dont enjoy, if you do youre missing the entire point of a leisure activity. Those people would otherwise not be playing magic at all if it meant participating in an event that they dont enjoy vs one they do.

    You can use the example of edh players wont spend their money on limited and that impacts limited, but in reality even without edh they wouldnt be spending money on limited if its not something they have interest in.

    Edh doesnt trump and cancel out interest in other formats. We dont really stop and go well i can only play one so i choose you, we say this is what i enjoy, i dont enjoy this other one.
    That's assuming that EDH is the only format EDH players enjoy. I enjoy EDH and legacy. From time to time, I like to play some limited or some moderns. The constraints on my time are such that I can realistically only go out and play about once a week. I choose to play EDH because that's the format I enjoy most. If time allowed, I would play in the local legacy weeklies as well. I'm giving you a specific example of EDH impacting participation in other formats for at least one player and I doubt that I'm the only person playing the game with some kind of limited resources.

    Again, I don't think it's a significant factor in participation in other formats. I've already made the same point as you earlier in the thread that not all players who play primarily EDH would have any interest in other formats if it didn't exist. I think it's a net benefit for MtG and I don't think it's harming other formats, let alone killing the game. There are still players where choosing to play EDH is impacting their participation in other formats. The only point I'm trying to make is that it's not as absolute as you made it out to be in your initial post.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Is Commander killing Magic?
    Quote from Xcric »
    commander participation has no bearing on other formats, and isnt' detracting from participation in those formats unless your lgs is holdings its commander night the same day as its other format events.
    Commander participation impacts other formats. People have a limited amount of time and money that they're willing to put into the game. I can get out to play one night a week and I almost always make it an EDH night, which means I'm not playing in some other event. Similar logic applies to money. If I'm spending my MtG budget on EDH related purchases, that's money that I'm not spending on constructed decks/limited or whatever. I don't think that EDH play is a significant factor in whether or not someone is going to play other formats but it's misleading to say that it has no impact at all.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Looking for a specific cycle of cards for a deck
    Full list is:Asterisks mark cards that are not modern legal, so you'll want to stay away from those if you're working on a modern deck like the forum choice implies. There are a few other cards with similar and/or related mechanics out there, like Harness the Storm, that could fit into your deck as well.
    Posted in: Modern
  • posted a message on [Offtopic] Community Thread
    Quote from Donald »
    I've had to listen to Georgia fans complaining about losing the national championship all day.
    That's what you get for living in Georgia.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion
    The reason people are going to build Zacama in droves is because of the Timmy appeal. It's a giant three-headed dinosaur. There's a subset of the commander crowd that would build the deck even if the card was significantly worse than it is, interesting build around or no.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Buylist Market Price - an excuse for dealers to rip you off?
    Buylist market price is the average value of what stores on TCGplayer are actually paying for the card. If there's a large discrepancy between that and listed prices, it typically means that stores on the whole don't think the listed price is sustainable or that there's demand at that price, which is generally a safe assumption during and immediately after a spike. TCGplayer listing prices based on what cards are actually moving isn't trying to rip anyone off, it's providing more accurate information about sales. Adding market price for sold cards was a great move to increase transparency and mitigate the price impact of buyouts (also note that market price for Scorched Ruins in your screenshot is only $13, so cards aren't necessarily moving at the listed prices). It makes perfect sense that they would provide that information for buylists as well.

    If you want to get list prices for cards, list cards instead of buylisting them. It's tough to be sympathetic when the price trend of the card over the last month looks like the spoiler below and you're complaining that you can't easily sell into a spike.
    I will admit that I wished their algorithms for calculating market prices were more transparent. It's not clear how many sales or what time frame market price represents, so there's still room for improvement.
    Posted in: Market Street Café
  • posted a message on [Offtopic] Community Thread
    Southern Californian, can confirm that Disneyland is terrifying.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
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