Magic is hard.
I forgot how fast the Standard format can change. I had my Jeskai Heroic combo deck (http://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/04-11-14-heroic-combo/) sleeved up and ready to go. I probably should have checked the meta game or at least updated my deck with some Fate Reforged cards. Not that there are any Fate Reforged cards that would’ve helped me. I miss the days of Caw Blade or UW Delver. I tried to play in FNM this past week. 0-2 drop isn’t something I have had hanging over my head in a long time. I tried to rebound from the crushing blow of the 0-2 with some trades, but sadly that just wasn’t in the cards.
I’ve stopped bringing my personal trade stock into the local game store in an effort to try and focus on the Legacy Hero grind. In the Spirit of fairness, I don’t trade with myself either. The local players are starting to realize what I’m doing but the new people that walk in the door don’t seem to get it.
The story always starts the same way. New guy (let’s call him Richard) asks me why I’m not playing and I explained that I managed to rack up a quick 0-2 record and quickly dropped. Richard quickly asked if I had any trades with me. I slid over my binder for him to take a look at.
Quick aside here. I’ve had a lot of wannabe “Sharks” try and grind me for value. When I called them out on it, they’ve always knocked off the shenanigans and played it straight. There isn’t anything wrong with trying to get that value, it’s about how they try and do it. You don’t push anyone around. You don’t berate them for having bad cards that you’re ‘willing to take off of their hands.’ I could go on… I’m sure you get the idea.
I don’t think Richard got to the second page of my binder before he started in on me. “Where are your good cards at?” “I thought you said you had some cards for trade?” This guy tried every trick in the book. Insulting my prices, knocking my conditions, insulting my collection, insulting my knowledge of mtg finance and my ability to play this game. Funny thing is that while he’s doing this, he’s pulling out cards he wants but that didn’t stop him from offering me $100 cash for everything since I’m “too old for this game”. I just turned 32 on March fifth. I’m pretty sure he wasn’t old enough to drink. I haven’t been berated like that since my ex came to my office to yell at me for trying to sell some cards I picked up for someone that drove 2 hours to meet up with me, but that’s another story for another time. I tried to ignore it and focus on my goals. Sure, he was picking my stuff apart but he had some stuff in his binder that wasn’t priced correctly that I was hoping to pick up. I ignored my instincts. I should have packed it in and moved on but I haven’t had much luck trading lately so I was determined to make something work. I laughed at his banter. I asked him if he’s had a lot of luck with his approach after all I was a grizzled old man who didn’t have a lot of luck. That led him to say one of the dumbest things I have ever heard. “You should watch me trade at a big event. I’m one of the best traders you’ve ever seen but I don’t have time to teach you, unless you want to pay me.” Seriously. That happened. I don’t know how many of you are familiar with Jason Alt but at that moment in time I wanted to be able to snap my fingers and have him appear and explain to this kid why he was wrong. I laughed and asked him how he compared to the other titans of the trade floor. He didn’t answer me, instead he insulted the condition of my foils and offered to get them for $.10 each in bulk since, you know, they’re pretty beat. As I was asking him if he was serious, one of the locals came up and asked me why I was bothering trying to trade with this guy. Richard said “You should be asking me why I’m bothering trying to trade with him.” This was my cue to start picking up my cards and putting them back in the binder and move on. I was done ignoring my instincts. Richard had the gall to grab my hand, with MY cards in it, and tell me “We aren’t done yet!” This was my breaking point. I’ve let this kid berate and insult me long enough. I kept myself from losing my temper completely but I explained that he was exactly what was wrong with magic finance. He was the walking reason why normal players are intimidated by traders and he needed to evaluated his life and grow up. I was only putting up with his toddler antics because I was working on a project for a website and if I wasn’t I would have sent him packing in the first 3 minutes. My tirade wasn’t nearly this nice or watered down. I might have used language that isn’t suitable to print here but I didn’t resort to name calling. I’m still asking myself what he was expecting to gain by treating me like that?
I was able to salvage the night with an amazing Innistrad, Innistrad, Conspiracy draft. Innistrad is by far my favorite draft set by a large margin. How can you make the best draft set better? Adding Swords to Plowshares and Fact or Fiction is a great start! I was lucky enough to open a foil Brainstorm (taken over a Brago, King Eternal) and a Geist of Saint Traft. Easy 4-0 with the UW aggro deck. Playing with a pair of Doomed Traveler from Conspiracy instead of Innistrad was the talk of the table for some reason.
I had the foil Brainstorm for less than 5 minutes before it found a new home. I traded the foil Brainstorm ($60) for a judge promo Command Tower ($25 this was before the spike) a Stoneforge Mystic ($30) and a playset of Jace, Architect of Thought ($8). I’ve been picking Jace, Architect of Thought up since I noticed it in some of the Pro Tour decks and in Caleb Durward’s BUG deck he’s been streaming and writing about. At two to three bucks a copy I feel like it can only go up. Have I ever mentioned that I’m a sucker for penny stocks?
I planned on keeping the Command Tower for my judge promo collection until I saw the price spike after someone was nice enough to post on twitter that there was only five copies left on tcgplayer.com. I traded the Command Tower ($45) and a pair of Conspiracy Swords to Plowshares ($5 for the pair) for a playset of Polluted Deltas from Khans. This is a trade that I plan on looking at in a year from now. I bought a judge Survival of the Fittest sometime around Return to Ravnica for $85 and now it’s almost $300. I doubt Command Tower will see that kind of jump but these promos always seem to surprise me. Khans fetchlands are pretty much the cheapest they’re going to get right now. It will be interesting to see how fast they go back up in price considering Khans was the most opened set in Magic’s history.
I finally had the chance to spend my store credit with Channel Fireball. They’re having a month long Yard Sale and some of the deals were okay. I had $189.15 in credit and here is what I picked up.
- Judge Promo Flusterstorm $79.99
- Textless Nameless Inversion x5 $4.95
- Judge Promo Doubling Season $31.49
- Flooded Strand (Khans) x3 $41.97
- Wooded Foothills (Khans) $9.99
- True-Name Nemesis $19.99
The judge promo Doubling Season is interesting because it was cheaper than the set foil. It is the new art but it shouldn’t be that way. I think there is a lot less Judge promos then there are set foils but I don’t have the data to verify that.
My pick of the judge promo Flusterstorm looks like I really know what I’m doing with this finance stuff but in reality I just got really lucky. I’m a sucker for promos and the price gap wasn’t enough to scare me away. That decision made me roughly twenty dollars in value. I will try and move this promo for a normal, non foil version and use the gained value to help with my deck. It isn’t worth leaving the value on the table in this instance.
Textless Nameless Inversion was a flier based on some combo I read about for Modern that I can’t even remember. They can always sit in my trade binder. New players always seem to enjoy the textless cards as a throw in and they were a buck each.
As for the rest, I was able to complete my two playsets of fetchlands (Flooded Strand and Wooded Foothills) and pick up a True-Name Nemesis for my deck.
Originally I wanted to use my store credit on speculation targets but I felt that sitting on the credit for too long was a waste of resources. Titania dropped $3 a copy but Chalice went up to $10. I haven’t looked at the entire order again to compare but a quick glance at a couple cards showed enough. I feel that I made more without waiting. I will compare everything and show you guys next week.
That’s it for this week. It looked bleak for our hero but in the end it worked out pretty well. Some great trades have really helped lately. I’m super excited to finally have the time to get back to the grind here. I’m thankful that this site gives me the platform to share it with you guys. The feedback I get really helps too. Keep it coming!
mtglegacyhero at the gmail
@somethingsays on twitter
Shout out to my friend Reynaldo Rivera for the sweet art. Check him out at rtype1.netTrack your collection's value over time, see which cards moved the most, track wishlists, tradelists and more. Sign up at MTGPrice.com - it's free!