The fact that MTG as a brand isn't selling as well as it has in the past whether it be due to Wizards of the Coast / Hasbro's incompetence or proof of a generation gap of younger players more drawn to IP Crossovers compared to older players who are more conservative in their views of the MTG brand staying the same so that it doesn't end up losing it's own sense of identity with the original source material is definitely worth debating. MTG managed to stand the test of time because we've always believed in the notion that the gameplay mechanics and nostalgia alone were enough for the brand itself to stand on it's own but as it turns out that doesn't really seem to be the case here. The reason why I brought up Upper Deck Entertainment's Marvel / DC Vs. System Trading Card Game as an example earlier was because players actually feared of what the game would look like If it strayed too far away from American Comic Books to where it might look unrecognizable to those who play. I couldn't imagine what Vs. System would've looked like If we had crossed that threshold but oddly enough the game was discontinued only to be re-released as a Living Card Game by the same company with minimal success.Quote from Dontrike »I think the biggest thing that bothers me about entire sets of cards that are not Magic related is that it tells us the game can't stand on its own and now they need other IPs to help sell it. It makes the game feel cheap and rake like (look up rake for why I used that word.) If I wanted to play a LotR card game I would have played the actual LotR card game when it was out, if I wanted to play 40k I'd go spend $400 on painting supplies for one miniature.
Another problem I have with Paper Trading Card Games / Collectible Card Games like Universal Fighting System by Jasco games (re-branded as UniVersus) and Weiß Schwarz by Bushiroad is that instead of these licensed properties having their own Paper Trading Card Game / Collectible Card Game with it's own unique gameplay mechanics they're forced to share the same gameplay mechanics with other licensed properties within the same Paper Trading Card Game / Collectible Card Game that plays nothing like the source material they're based upon. It feels too watered down and generic with low learning curves for players who struggle with games being too complicated to learn. Less complexity equals more sales however something too complex won't sell at all as we've already seen with a lot of failed card games within the past couple of decades that missed the mark due to poor marketing and advertising. The sooner the Pay-to-Win business model changes from loot crates to something more convenient that isn't Online / Digital exclusive the better. Unfortunately we haven't found a real solution for it yet especially since now the ongoing pandemic has dramatically changed the paradigm.