Grinder Finance – Sealed Product and Post Modern Masters

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I’m going to start this article on a bit of a somber note.  News has come to my attention at the time of writing this article that leaves me in a reflective mood.  Satoru Iwata, only the 4th president of Nintendo, died at 55 years young.  It is truly a terrible day in the life of any gamer to see such a revolutionary and dedicated figure in the gaming community pass away.  Mr. Iwata was a gamer first and foremost just like the rest of us.  He was a role model for gamers and business men alike. While you may not play Nintendo’s games, his work is a part of our culture and we will need many more Iwatas to continue to push ahead the future of gaming.

“On my business card, I am a corporate president. In my mind, I am a game developer. But in my heart, I am a gamer” – Satoru Iwata

EN_ORI_ClshPK_SeekeroftheWay EN_ORI_ClshPK_ValorousStance

On a lighter note, we have some great news!  The recent release of the deck list for the Magic Origins clash packs is fantastic! The deck list can be viewed here. The number of valuable tournament staples included in these clash packs is a great opportunity to buy in at a suppressed price.  The reality of clash packs is they are not infinite in number and these are unlike the last few.  They included much better tournament cards for the alternate art foils.  They also included many cards that will be included in decks as 4 copies.  What does this mean for us?  A lot and we’ll discuss it all.

EN_ORI_ClshPK_DromokatheEternal EN_ORI_ClshPK_HonoredHierarch

The last few clash packs (which alternate with event decks every other set now) include two 60 card decks that are meant to be like duel decks.  They are made up of entirely standard legal cards and include 6 alternate art foil cards.  Clash Pack’s retail price is $30 similar to Event Decks but they can be found on Amazon and other similar sites for approximately $20-25.  That means the contents of the deck must be collectively be worth less than $30 in order for this to not be a “good” buy.  Coincidentally, as of this writing, two cards in the package combined have a MTGPrice fair trade value of $32.33.  This means there could be literal basic lands in the other 118 cards in the deck and it would be worth buying.  This is a huge step up from previous event decks that included very little of value outside of one card.

EN_ORI_ClshPK_SandsteppeCitadel EN_ORI_ClshPK_SiegeRhino

Another important thing to note is that the cards that are seeing tournament play from this deck are part of decks that play four copies of them.  This strongly incentivizes people to buy four decks and keep most of the higher value cards.  I think this is a great buy for anyone who doesn’t have four of the tournament staples because you can’t really beat the price. The fact that the deck has such high value cards that are likely to be kept by the player opening the deck means the price drop of these cards won’t be very steep.  Courser of Kruphix was in the last clash pack and saw an initial dip before rebounding back to close to its original price.

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Collected Company by Franz Vohwinkel.
Collected Company by Franz Vohwinkel.

What does this mean for us?  Well if you follow me on Twitter you likely could have bought in early.  I pre-ordered four copies of this deck because it’s just a no-brainer.  There is tons of value and the pieces you don’t need can be easily traded out.  It is important to be on top of supplementary sealed product releases just like these decks as they can also be great opportunities to purchase expensive cards for much less.

Windswept Heath by Yeong-Hao Han
Windswept Heath by Yeong-Hao Han

Well, what if I don’t play standard?  This is great value even for m=Modern players!  Each deck includes 1 Windswept Heath and 1 Collected Company, which are major players in Modern right now. However, I would not suggest Modern players to invest their money in this above other things.  Cards from Modern Masters 2015 are finally out of their rut and all beginning to rise again.  Tournament staples like Spellskite and Fulminator Mage continue to get more popular and supply is very quickly outstripping demand, though this could change very soon.

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fulspell

These charts show that despite being a rare these cards are still in very high demand to combat popular archtypes.  Spellskite is even above its presale price now at just a touch under $20.  Without any real reason for Wizards of the Coast another printing of the card lined up, it’s poised to continue climbing.  The only Modern Masters 2015 cards that may continue to fall are more casual cards that require less copies.  I think the time to buy your Modern Masters 2015 staples is very quickly passing.

If you’re thinking about finishing off cards outside of those sets, it’s still time to keep waiting.  If history repeats itself we should get major spoilers for Battle for Zendikar during Pax Prime (August 28th – 31st).  Wizards of the Coast hosts a party that included the spoilers for allied fetch lands last year.  That date is going to be important to note because if they don’t spoil Zendikar fetch lands during that party, I think it is highly unlikely they will be reprinted at all.  Fortunately, a panic shouldn’t trigger unless they are confirmed not in the set so you will have some time to pick up the remainder of your Scalding Tarns or Verdant Catacombs to finish your deck.  After that you can pretty much wait until December for the best prices.

cryptic

As you can see from this graph, before the reprinting of Cryptic Command in Modern Masters 2015 it had it’s most significant dip in late December into early January.  The best line to look at here is the best buylist price.  If stores are not willing to pay a lot on the card it can be inferred that supply is high and demand is low.  The buylist line is slowly creeping up now after crashing during GP Vegas.  Take a look at the price graphs of cards you’re interested in owning and consider the buylist line as an indicator of future growth.

Thanks for reading and hopefully next week we will have some interesting results after a weekend with Magic Origins to talk about!

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7 thoughts on “Grinder Finance – Sealed Product and Post Modern Masters”

  1. I went the same route with the Clash Pack, not only because of CoCo and Heath, but also because of DroCo, Rhino, Anafenza and the sweet Sandsteppe Citadel. A Playset of those will look great in Abzan!

    As for MM15, I’ll pass. I put my money mostly on the Gods and there long-term potential (unless one of them manages to ride a hype-wave because of some Enchantment or Devotion-Deck. Karametra, Heliod, Nylea and Erebos seem most likely to me, but who knows).

    1. Fuquan, Herald of the Pantheon is a good Origins investment for your Gods and Enchantment strategies. I wouldn’t pass on MM15 if you have the extra big bucks it takes to invest in that set and now is the time. The old printings act as a guide to about how much you’ll make and when.

      Mr. Casale is spot on about this Clash Pack. It’s packed with value. Collected Company and Windswept Heath may see a small dip but they will be $20 ish in no time, and maybe more. These 2 modern staples keep their original art and set stamp as well. One thing no one has bought up is the fact that Wizards of the Coast does not offer the Clash Packs in all the languages they normally do with the sets. The way I see things it’s not so much a ‘reprint’, rather just an extra printing very close to their original set release.

    2. For a player of the game, buying gods is not a very good investment right now. They rotate soon and dont see a ton of play outside of Keranos in Modern. The point of this article is to clue players in to when to buy the cards they need to play with.

      1. While I am aware of the intention of this article, I disagree that gods are no good investment right now. I doubt they dip much further than now (I pick them up for about 1-2€ each) and if they manage to find a home for the last three months of their Standard life, they may have a short boost. In the long term, gods will be quite popular among casuals and EDH players alike.

  2. I don’t think looking to buy these packs expecting financial gains is advisable at all. As of right now, coco and heath could both be easily bought for around 23, and around 20 where i look in fb groups. We cant forget the rule of thumb of buying at tcglow and trading at mid. Buying because thr trade value price balances out isn’t wise because it’s not a rral number for people who dont run a shop looking to sell these. So you will be most likely stuck with a lot of bulk to sell just to break even. It’s better to just buy the power singles once they drop more.

    1. I was not advocating buying them to make money. The point of this article series is to help people that play the game do it for cheaper. You could wait for the cards to drop from this pack but that’s time you are spending not playing with them. That is time that is costing a player money.

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