The Nutt Draw: The Demand Matrix

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It’s that time again for another update to the Demand Matrix. What is the Demand Matrix you ask? Simply put it’s a way to mathematically define the relative popularity of the cards we know and love. I have however written a primer for reference purposes so if you’d like to know more, cast your doe eyes yonder. Primers and Glossary

This time around I’ve actually gone to quite a bit of behind the scenes work in order to recreate all the spreadsheets from the ground up. I’ve finished off the Demand Matrix calculations just in time for this week’s article and (as you might notice from some of the sheets below) I am still working on the primary outputs for both the Set EV and Buy Lists. I hope to have around 15 Buy Lists aggregated into the end results and of course there are some other ideas kicking around the lab. I have also added the relevant results from my Scars of Mirrodin prerelease research to give us a few days jump on the set before it enters Standard.

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There is a lot to scroll through on this one. Jace, the Mind Sculptor is still on top, but the last weeks prerelease prices on eBay have shoved Primeval Titan down to 5th from its customary place of 2nd. This gap is filled with the likes of the Mox Opal, Koth, of the Hammer, and Venser, the Sojourner. Though three of the top four spots going to Planeswalkers is hardly surprising, I would say that they probably won’t all be there or in this order in a couple week. Scars of Mirrodin is trending very high right now in overall value and it can’t keep it up due to some of the more basic tenants of supply and demand. As you can see if you scroll far enough, along with what you have already come to know (and love) in the Demand Matrix covering Standard I’ve gone ahead and added in a Matrix for both the Extended format and for the combined Legacy and Vintage formats (renamed “Eternal” based on comment feedback). Immediately following the writing of that last sentence I became curious and created a list of all the Magic card as well to show how the cards in every format compare against each other. That list is embedded a little lower on the page but before we get to that I’d like to draw your attention to the extended list. Baneslayer Angel tops it out (the M10 version) and although I could spend some time to filter cards printed in Standard out, I decided to leave them in. The M10 version has been trending below that of the M11 version for months now anyway, and it is a valid card for Extended. You might also have noticed that I rotated the sets a few days ahead of their actual rotation. With Elspeth, Knight-Errant taking the number two slot, Noble Hierarch in third, and on down to the M10 version of Garruk Wildspeaker in 10th, there are only two cards in the top ten of the Extended list that are of older cardboard. Mutavault and Damnation appear to be the most in demand cards in Extended that don’t rotate on October 1st. I don’t have a historical chart to display this information but I can tell you that from the data I had saved a month ago, the Mutavault is up in demand, and Maelstrom Pulse along with Vampire Nocturnus has fallen a few places. Due to the large amount of cards nearly exclusively included in the Eternal formats I’ve expanded the list to the top 200 from the 100 which was already expanded on the other lists. Only the recently purchased Black Lotus cards from Beta and Unlimited beat out Underground Sea, Force of Will and Mishras Workshop which then beat out the rest of the Power 9 in demand which, all-in-all, isn’t very surprising. Time will tell but I think that the movement of the top 30-50 cards on the Eternal list are going to be the most interesting to watch.

Below is the list of all the Magic cards I mentioned above.

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As in articles past I’ve also assembled a list that displays the largest in Demand Index changes from the monthly averages compared to the weekly. I’ve worked out a new way to record the historical data so over time this will become more accurate and interesting.

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For technical reasons this list doesn’t include Scars of Mirrodin cards but it will once they are in the main data stream. Vengevine and Gideon Jura fell a bit in the last week which was balanced out by Primeval Titan and Grave Titan both gaining in popularity. For the most part the cards seem to be pretty stable as we move into the Limited season with few outlets for tier one deck lists.

For the last list this week we have the application of the Demand Index values to the Buy Lists. I’ve sorted the list according to those cards which are of the least interest to consumers but still being bought up by online stores. We could all make some cash by delving into the dust covered storage boxes that our significant others complain about.

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There is a lot of potential scrolling on this one. Over the next few weeks I’ll be filling it out with more and more buy lists, but I wanted to have the template and structure in place. As indicated by the titles above empty columns, I’m going to have Starcity Games and Strike Zone on soon. Starcity’s list is still offline right now, but I have Strike Zones downloaded. I have some more tweaking to get the data formatted into the main spread sheets but its coming.

If you have any ideas for how I might associate or use the information I’ve collected but that I haven’t thought of or perhaps presented poorly, let me know. I want to make this all as relevant as possible, and that is going to take a discussion to create, not just an idea.

I’ll leave you with a fancy little motion chart I’ve been playing with. It’s more amusing then useful, but I can see some potential for illustration of concepts within it. It should work with any browser, but some security settings may prevent its display.

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Chris McNutt
Magic Analyst
Level 1 Judge
@fatecreatr on twitter

8 thoughts on “The Nutt Draw: The Demand Matrix

  1. The buylist spreadsheet is amazing, I'm glad that you put so much effort into making these things because it certainly helps a bunch of people including myself. Keep up the awesome work.

  2. It amazes me that Mox Opal is at such high demand. I guess people see the word 'Mox' and automatically think broken (also, I think a lot of people are not seeing the word 'legendary').

    thanks for the lists/graphs… I'll be going to an event tonight at a new venue that I hope to find some new trade-partners at. This will be very helpful.

  3. Trading went really well, thanks largely to the articles I've read here 🙂

    The biggest trade I had at release night was my Mox Opal, Kuldotha Forgemaster, and Precursor Golem (he wanted the Golem and Forgemaster for set completeion purposes) for His Vengevine, Ratchet Bomb, and Wurmcoil promo. All things old, I was lad to be rid of the Opal, and even happier to get 3 cards that are very playable in the format!

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