Wednesday, July 23, 2014

My Path to MTGO from Paper and Vintage Masters early trends

Hi Everyone!
Welcome back for another dose of MTGO finance advice and theory!
I played magic back when 4th edition first came out. I remember playing when they still sold revised packs in stores and they were no big deal. I even came across a couple shops that had Unlimited boosters that sold for the premium price of $3.50 (If I remember correctly, retail price was $1.99). I played when Ice Age came out, I remember Jester’s Cap being a $20 card. I remember hearing about the fabled Mana Crypt that I never saw until I attended a MTG card show and finally saw all the amazing cards I had only heard about. I stopped playing for a few years because my local shop closed and it seemed like Magic was dying out. I found another store when I turned 16 and started going there for Friday game night. I played for a couple months until, again, Magic seemed to die out compared to some other card games. A few years later I ran into some friends at a local outdoor shopping center playing Magic in the courtyard area. I reconnected with old friends and joined their play group. We played big group games all night long every Friday. It was great. After 3 months of everyone playing the same deck again and again it started to lose its appeal so we all got a crazy idea, we would check out a FNM tournament. My first tournament outing is another ridiculous story but it was during Onslaught Block, right after Scourge came out. Unfortunately, the shop was far from our houses, some of my friends were students still and some didn’t have cars. We eventually stopped going to tournaments. Our last tournament was right before Time Spiral came out.
The common theme in all the times I stopped playing was that it was hard to find people to play with, and it was expensive and inconvenient, If I wanted to play Magic, the only time was really Friday night and it was hard to find people to trade with (Trading is one of my favorite things about Magic).
After a few more years off, I started reading articles on one day. I kept reading for a year, nearly every day toward the end of the year. It seemed that Magic is better than it ever has been, but that one problem still existed, I didn’t have people to play or trade with.
When I considered going out and buying cards again, I looked into MTGO this time. I decided it was the best bet for me because it was convenient. I could play any format at any time of any day all from the comfort of my home. Sweet deal if you ask me.
I do miss the social aspect of MTG that I get at real life events, but it’s still fun to play online. There is one other reason I really like Magic Online. Vintage Masters.
Vintage Masters gave online players for the first time ever recently the opportunity to play Vintage Magic. I love that there are people to play and trade with and the cards are available and not too expensive to be attainable. Sorry for the long lead in to me loving Vintage Masters.
One other thing that’s much easier to analyze than paper Magic is the economy of MTGO. One really interesting theory I notice in VMA that I haven’t ever seen before in MTGO is an emerging format (I didn’t play when Modern was first introduced). Right now, Vintage is an emerging format on MTGO. It’s so interesting to see how things happen.
Unfortunately, I can’t talk about it in depth yet, because it’s been around for about a month…there is no depth to speak in yet. But, I do want to just mention one trend I have noticed. The cards that are “popular” in Vintage and Legacy (have a look at blue dual lands and Force of Will) seem to steadily going down in price but the “iconic” cards that aren’t popular like scrubland, plateau, and Savannah (duals are icons of the eternal formats, no?) seem to be slowly and steadily going up in price. I don’t know exactly what this says about the health of Vintage on MTGO. 

It’s an emerging market and that’s one of my favorite things to study so I’ll keep everyone posted. Do you notice any trends in VMA card pricing? If you do, go ahead and post in the comments and we’ll chat about it.

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