Grinder Finance – How Vegas saved Tarmogoyf

I was writing an article about the Pro Tour and cards to watch but that’s kind boring.  We got the Grand Prix schedule for next year (you can find it here) and it’s great!  There’s one very big event next year much like last year.  Grand Prix Las Vegas will likely be the largest Magic event of the year.  Maybe of all time, topping the previous Grand Prix Las Vegas.  But probably most notably, is this GP Vegas is not format “TBD”.  It’s not even limited.  It’s unlikely there will be any limited release product to headline that weekend.  And that’s great!

Wait were you expecting me to complain that they’re not using that weekend to hold a sealed Modern Masters 2017 Grand Prix?  It’s actually the best possible scenario if there is a limited print run set (like Modern Masters and Eternal Masters) that it doesn’t go to a huge limited Grand Prix.  What has happened in the past and will continue to happen in the future is large portions of the print run can be bought up by vendors and keep prices high on cards that would otherwise stagnate and fall.  Grand Prix Las Vegas 2015 saved Tarmogoyf from that fate.


Look at this price graph.  Tarmogoyf is consistently going down and the buylist price is a miserable $70.  All of a sudden the buylist price spikes and by June 1st it looks like Tarmogoyf bottomed out for a day.  It’s pretty easy to see what happened here.  I have some pictures on my phone from that weekend.

hotlist 1

This sign (which wasn’t even the first one they put out) “saved” the price of Tarmogoyf. When there is a huge room with tons of vendors looking to compete to buy cards on a weekend you best believe they will match each other.  This store’s buy prices were so far and away the best that everyone had to increase their buylist prices to even get a sniff of someone selling them cards.  Sure some stores like Coolstuff probably kept it low and just bought their more casual bread and butter cards but a lot of vendors don’t operate that way.

This also puts a strain on the supply on other online sites because people see these buylist numbers and gain a new appreciation for the value of their cards.  There is definitely a level of consumer confidence in the price of a Tarmogoyf that makes them reluctant to sell them for lower buylist prices.  If Joe Schmoe was thinking of selling the Goyf he cracked in his one pack of Modern Masters 2015 online because he saw vendors are paying $125 for it then it causes the prices of other Tarmogoyfs to increase.  It’s the rising tide lifts all ships effect.

hotlist 2

Later in the weekend they moved down to a slightly more sane $115 – which is still more than you can pay to buy a Tarmogoyf 15 months later!  But the real question now, when you can find Tarmogoyf for $110 on aggregate sites like TCGPlayer, is this still too expensive?  Had a large portion of the available Tarmogoyfs not been opened in Las Vegas what would the price look like?   Maybe it would be like the new Force of Will.  While there is not great data yet due to it’s age, I can say for a fact that Force of Will is trending upward despite an infusion of supply.  It’s possible once again that a store has propped up the low supply artificially raising the floor or perhaps people underestimated how many are actually in circulation.  I’m not sure which it is but I can guarantee it would be light years worse if GP Columbus (the same weekend as the release of Eternal Masters) was an limited print run limited Grand Prix.

Going Forward

I do believe there will be a Modern Masters 2017 and some other weird summer set to sandwich a standard booster set.  I have a feeling it worked out too well for Wizards of the Coast this year not to do it again.  What will be in it?  I suppose that’s anyone’s guess but I’m expecting a return of Sir Tarmogoyfington III as well as a plethora of reprints from Innistrad block.  Liliana of the Veil, Snapcaster Mage, Craterhoof Behemoth, etc are likely to all be mythic rares.  We will likely get this announcement during one of the two yearly announcements (during the release of Kaladesh and the unnamed block following).

Eldritch Moon

Pro Tour Eldritch Moon

I don’t think the sky is falling and I do believe we will find a deck that consistently beats Bant Company.  What that deck is, I do not know but someone will figure it out.  I expect it to be the brain child of Matt Nass and Sam Black but we will see what happens.  At this point most of the cards in Eldritch Moon have already seen huge decreases in price.  I would recommend picking up anything you might want to play before the Pro Tour and then wait until the middle of September to get the rest.  Right before Kaladesh spoilers will be the best time to get in.

3 thoughts on “Grinder Finance – How Vegas saved Tarmogoyf”

  1. The top of your second section regrading MM 2017 and another set sandwiching a standard booster set u said “it’s worked out too well”…what exactly do u mean and how do u/we know it has worked out well??

    And personal opinion (and I’m likely wrong) is that they will NOT reprint tarmogoyf in favor of LoTV and Snapcaster at mythic. Wizards gives us appetizers, not fillet main course, so I don’t expect 2 $100 plus mythics in the next modern masters set. Just my personal feeling, and I think that would be fine except for people who want $50 goyfs.

    GP Vegas announcement already had people at my LGS making plans as we played Standard last night. Cudos to wizards and channel fireball for that

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